Snackin’ on a Sunday

Hey there! So, this past Sunday turned out to be one of those good ol’ lazy days. I stayed in my comfy clothes all day, sorted some laundry and scrolled through all of my social media accounts. With all of this energy exerted (ha!), I worked up a little hunger. I came up with this midday snack, just something to nibble on a few hours before dinner. 

You ever browse your fridge or pantry for something “good” and sorta end up disappointed? Or is that just me? Grocery shopping isn’t a joy of my life, so I only go when I really need to. However, Sunday was different. I actually had some good ingredients to throw a nice little charcuterie (Google this word, it’s also fun to say) plate together. 

Hopefully, this can give you some ideas of what to make for your own charcuterie plate/platter–perfect to enjoy alone, with your love or to entertain friends and family. The options are endless and creativity is key…and of course presentation. 

Ingredients used (pictured above): Salami bites, Prosciutto, Havarti cheese, Cheddar cheese, almonds and Raisin Rosemary crisps 

Happy Snacking! 

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Foodie Chronicles: Spaghetti Squash

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On my last supermarket trip, I noticed an entire display of Spaghetti Squash. After hearing so many good things about it (mostly the healthy factor), I decided to give it a try.  Of course, I sourced Pinterest to figure out how to even begin cooking the squash. I landed on the Eat Within Your Means blog, which provided detailed, step-by-step directions. Here’s what I did:

Step 1: Preheat oven to 375 degrees

Step 2: Slice squash into rings and discard seeds (unless you want to save those to roast for a tasty snack)

Step 3: Place squash rings on a cookie sheet lined with foil–Bake for 45 minutes

Step 4: Remove from oven and cool for about 15 minutes

photo 1Step 5: Peel away the squash skin and use a fork to separate the squash strands (which surprisingly turn out looking like real spaghetti pasta!)

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Step 6: Prepare your favorite sauce and serve on top of the spaghetti squash (I went the easy route and made ground chicken and paired it with a traditional jar spaghetti sauce)

Step 7: Mixed 1/4 cup of part-skim ricotta cheese with 2 tablespoons of grated parmesan and Romano mix with a pinch of salt and black pepper and topped the sauce with it.  Also, used some parsley for added garnish.

Delish!

Please try this simple recipe out and let me know your thoughts!

Easy weeknight meal: Summer Stir Fry

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Last night, I came across the cooking site “The Comfort of Cooking” (via TheNest.com) which has some really tasty-looking recipes accompanied by some amazing imagery (I really need to upgrade to a better camera-DSLR, maybe?). Coming home from the gym, I always feel like I’m starving. So, I looked for something easy to throw together for dinner and the ‘Summer Stir Fry’ popped up. Who doesn’t love a good stir fry, especially one with fresh, healthy ingredients?

Luckily, I already had all of the ingredients on-hand (happy dance!) :

  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 25-30 whole shrimp, peeled, deveined, tails left on
  • 2 whole zucchini, sliced on a slight diagonal
  • 2 ears corn, kernels sliced off
  • ½ cup grape tomatoes, halved
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • Chopped fresh herbs, such as parsley/basil/cilantro, if desired
  • **Crushed red pepper flakes (Not a part of the recipe, but I added since I love spicy food)
  • **Jasmine rice or Brown rice (This wasn’t included in the recipe either, but I added for a little more substance)

To see how to make this delicious recipe, click here.

I am happy to report the dish was very easy to prepare, it’s super colorful and full of flavor. This recipe yielded more than enough to bring for today’s lunch. This will definitely be added to my list of quick and easy meals — very pleasing to the taste buds.

What are some of your favorite recipes, that are easy to pull together quickly? Please share!

(Image taken by Alexis Young)

Wedding planning, Sangria & Caprese!

First things first, the wedding planning was not for me (insert smirk here), but it was for one of my very good friends. It was a blistering hot Saturday afternoon outside, but inside my cozy domain, it made for a very chill day. The bride-to-be, and a fabulous mutual friend of ours, my wonderful Mother and myself, recently gathered around my dining room table to hash out some important wedding details. I threw together an assortment of light snacks — fruit, salami, select cheeses and pita crisps along with chocolate-covered pretzels for something sweet. We also had salsa and guacamole with tortilla chips and…fresh caprese salad (deliciously prepared by the fiance of the bride-to-be). The cocktail du jour was a homemade red sangria, which turns out to be one of the most easily prepared, crowd-pleasing beverages. (In addition to my homemade version, there are also many bottled sangria versions sold in stores, which we also tried!)

Many magazines were strewn about, items from the to-do list were crossed off and more importantly, many laughs took place. Truth be told, wedding planning appears to be a bit daunting, no matter the size of the guest list.  However, with a few good friends, great food, a little music and a refreshing summer beverage, it was actually a stress-free, hilarious afternoon.

Have you ever been a part of a wedding and/or wedding planning?

(The collage above was created from some pictures I took from that afternoon)

*Images taken by Alexis Young

Blueberries + Cake = a fantastic breakfast entree

While perusing through Pinterest (my new obsession, along with 18 million other people in the world), I came across this delectable looking Buttermilk-Blueberry Breakfast Cake.  Although I am not the biggest baker around, this recipe seems easy enough. I will try it out and report back soon…promise.

Looking for this wonderful recipe? Visit Alexandra’s Kitchen website. Whether you’re a novice or expert with creating tasty delights, there are some amazing looking recipes that are worthy of experimenting in the kitchen on Alexandra’s Kitchen site. So break out that mixer and stainless measuring cups and get to baking!

What’s your favorite breakfast recipe that requires baking? What are some of your baking secrets or techniques, that you care to share?

P.S. Find me on Pinterest! (Lexofhearts)

Image Source – AlexandraCooks.com