I'm crazy about this horse and I'm fairly certain that he shares my affection because Mitus trots to the fence to greet me whenever he sees me. 🧡 I'm choosing to believe that it has nothing to do with the fact that I bring him snacks. 😅 My visits have become so frequent in fact that I've even started to buy those ridiculously giant bags of carrots from the grocery store so that I can keep a hearty supply of Mitus' favorite snack on hand. 🥕
Last week, I decided to switch things up and I brought Mitus an apple instead of his usual carrot. 🍎 I've never been a horse owner but I've always assumed that horses love apples and I thought Mitus might appreciate some variety in his treats. 🤷🏻♀️ Well, apparently not ALL horses love apples. When I offered Mitus the shiny fruit, he apprehensively took it from my hand, rolled it around his mouth for a solid minute and then proceeded to spit it out on the ground - without even a single tooth mark. 😳I stared at the unblemished piece of fruit on the ground in disbelief, while this 2000 pound horse went back to munching on pasture grass. #isthisnormal?
Maybe I need to take my dinner cue from Mitus. More and vegetables and plants and less fruit. 😅🥗 I'm not really into eating grass but I would certainly benefit from incorporating more lettuce and veggies into my diet. Lucky for me, I've got a garden full of lettuce and fresh herbs, just waiting for me to enjoy. Nothing encourages me to eat more lettuce than when I can go out and pick it from my own garden.
Farro salad with lemon chicken is great as a grain bowl and equally delicious when you serve it over mixed greens as a more traditional salad. Either way you serve it, this is a great salad to add to your spring menu. It's got all the elements of a great, healthy meal that's just as satisfying as it is delicious. 🥒
Farro Salad with Lemon Chicken
1 1/2 cups farro
1 Tablespoon + 1 teaspoon salt
6 Tablespoons olive oil
1 Tablespoon fresh oregano
1 1/2 teaspoons lemon zest
2 Tablespoons lemon juice
3/4 teaspoon pepper
4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1/4 cup pepperocini
1 Tablespoon pepperocini brine
1/2 English cucumber, sliced thin
1/2 cup cherry tomatoes
Serve chicken over farro salad, drizzling with reserved dressing.
In case you were wondering what happened to the discarded apple - it didn't go to waste. This hungry fella was more than happy to gobble it up.🍎 This donkey eats anything - except beets. 😂
I can hardly wait to use this beautiful new appliance. This weekend, I had everything from biscotti, doughnuts and muffins to eggs, cupcakes and sticky buns, waiting for their moment in the sun - aka. my poor overworked oven. 🍩 All I could think about when I looked at the endless trays of unbaked food wrapped around my kitchen, was how great it will be when I can get may baking done, twice as fast. ♨️ No more 5:00 AM wake up calls to start baking when I'm firing up TWO ovens to get the job done. 😉
Biscotti days are notoriously long baking days in this house. The double baked, dunkable cookies are one of our favorites and I always keep a hearty supply in my freezer, so when I bake biscotti - I bake A LOT. It usually takes me between 6 and 7 hours to get all of the crunchy cookies baked, so it's a workout day for my oven. But having biscotti that I can pull out of my freezer anytime I want - totally worth it.
These white chocolate dipped cinnamon chip biscotti (that's a tongue twister😅) are amazing. They're a perfect compliment to a cup of tea and I can control the crunchiness by adjusting the cooking time. I bake it a little longer when I want super crunchy cookies or a little less when I'm in the mood for softer biscotti.
Cinnamon Chip Biscotti
6 Tablespoons butter
2/3 cup sugar
1 Tablespoon vanilla
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
2 cups flour
3/4 cups cinnamon chips
1 Tablespoon cinnamon sugar
2 Tablespoons crystal decorating sugar
2 cups white chocolate, melted
Return biscotti to baking sheet and bake 30 minutes. Let cool.
Dip each biscotti into chocolate and set on waxed paper to set.
Is there any better time to photograph cinnamon chip biscotti than at sunset? That golden lighting really just highlighted the warm flavors in this biscotti. These aren't going to last long in this house. 😂
I'm a planner. Some (most) would say that I'm an "overplanner." 😅 Planning, organizing, list making - I live for that. 📝 I even make lists of the lists that I have to make. 🤦🏻♀️ I don't know how I would get through my day without my lists because I certainly can't rely on my memory anymore. #welcometofifty 😄
I really do enjoy the planning process. I like to plan parties. 🎉I like to plan vacations. 🏝I even like to plan dinners. 🍽 For unexplainable reasons, the one thing that I don't like to plan is what I'm going to eat for lunch. 🤷🏻♀️ It seems strange for a girl who operates with a detailed plan every single day to "wing it" when it comes to the midday meal - but, believe it or not, that's usually the case. For that reason, lunch tends to be my unhealthiest meal of the day. #coldpizzalover 🍕
This week, I'm changing my routine and actually doing some meal prepping for lunches. 😬I prefer the words "intentional" and "planned" instead of "leftovers" when it comes to lunches. When I purposefully prepare extra food for dinner, it somehow becomes much more appealing to me than when I accidentally end up with leftovers.
Honestly, opening the refrigerator at noon on a busy afternoon and seeing a Tupperware loaded with delicious and healthy Quinoa Burrito Bowl was like a little gift. 🎁 This was a super easy lunch to prepare in advance too. I made 4 servings of these tasty bowls - we had 2 for dinner and I put the other two in containers for lunch. It was perfect. I took off the lid, popped it in the microwave for 30 seconds, added some fresh avocado and tomatoes and then dove right in. DELICIOUS!
Quinoa Burrito Bowls
1 cup quinoa
2 cups water
1 Tablespoon olive oil
1/4 cup onion, minced
1 clove garlic, grated
1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
1/4 teaspoon chili powder
1/4 cup fresh lime juice
1 cup shredded lettuce
1 chicken breast
Monterrey Jack cheese, shredded
Pico de gallo
Sour cream or crema
fresh cilantro, chopped
Add any additional toppings that you like.
Slice grilled chicken and add to the top.
My goal when I look for a new recipes is to find that elusive intersection between healthy, delicious, and doable. It’s easy to find recipes with one or two of the three. But coming up with a recipe that falls into all three categories feels downright impossible sometimes. We've all tried "healthy" recipes that tasted terrible and delicious recipes that were ridiculously complicated. 🍱 Quinoa Burrito Bowls meets all the criteria for a good recipe. It's super healthy. It's amazingly delicious AND it's totally doable. The trifecta!
Last week, I was happily cruising along baking cupcakes, decorating cookies and crafting cakes when all of a sudden ... these pictures pop up on my phone.
Not gonna lie - my heart wasn't prepared for this. 😢From the time that she was a in elementary school, this wise soul was emphatic about the fact that she was going to grow up and become a teacher. 🍎 There was never any doubt that teaching children is her passion. And here we are, all these years later - getting ready to watch her receive her well earned teaching degree. 🎓 #alltheemotions 😁😟🥰😊
I'm coping with all of the emotions of my youngest child graduating from college in the most healthy, logical and rational way --- with carbs. 🥯😂 I know that a toasted asiago cheese bagel smothered in cream cheese isn't going to stop the tears from welling up in my eyes but it does put a smile on my face. 😭😁 Obviously, there are better ways of dealing with my emotions and I'm going through the process of exploring healthy outlets but some days --- I just need a bagel. 💁🏻♀️
My awesome daughter in law and I made these amazing cheese filled bagels together.🧀 It's always more fun to cook with a partner and having a fellow carb lover in the house was the perfect excuse to make homemade bagels. 😉
1 and 1/2 cups warm water
2 and 3/4 teaspoons instant dry yeast
4 cups bread flour
1 Tablespoon + 1/4 cup barley malt syrup
2 teaspoons salt
1/2 cup asiago cheese, shredded
1 egg white beaten
1 Tablespoon water
Bake bagels 20 minutes at 425. Allow to cool 20 minutes on baking sheet then transfer to wire rack to cool completely.
This wasn't my first batch of homemade bagels but it was probably my best. I would rate it a 10/10 on taste but an 8/10 on appearance. I can't seem to get that nice smooth exterior on my bagels like the ones that you would see in a bakery. Anyone have any advice for me? Send me all your bagel tips and tricks, please. I need an excuse to make more bagels. 😅
Who said redesigning my kitchen would be all fun and games? 😂We've only just begun the process and --- trust me, it's been a wild ride. Remember 2 days ago when I professed my love for a certain slab of granite that I was just SURE was destined to become countertops in my new kitchen? 24 hours after finalizing our decision - my countertop dreams were shattered. 😭 Why did I have to fall in love with the most expensive piece of granite in the entire warehouse!?! We were willing to stretch the budget a little for the right granite but this particular slab was not just a little but waaaaaay out of our budget. 💸
So, the great granite search continues. As of today, I've visited no less than 9 stone warehouses and I've seen hundreds of potential countertop slabs. I still think that there's a specific gene that one uses to look at a rock and visualize it as a surface in their home. A gene that I'm convinced, I don't have. 🤷🏻♀️Ironically, I can look at a potato and see ALL kinds of delicious possibilities. 🥔 I can look at a piece of fabric and see a dress. 👗I look at a rock and I see a rock. 😅 Apparently, that lacking gene is specific to rocks. 💁🏻♀️
It's a good thing that there are granite experts, who possess the gene, who can help me in my search for granite countertops. People who can point out the fine details in each stone. Things like marbling, veining and luster. When viewed through the eyes of an expert, it's easier to see the unique qualities of each stone. It's hard to deny the presence of God when you really stop to look at the undeniable beauty of these rocks that are being excavated from within our planet. 🌎
I think I've been granite shopping too long because I'm starting to see granite qualities in my baking now. 😅 The contrasting light and dark colors, the uniqueness of each piece and the beautiful design on top. Too much? 😂😂 Clearly, I need to take a step back from the great granite search for a little while. Maybe I'll just take a break and focus my attention on baking - something that doesn't involve making monumental decisions. 💁🏻♀️
Black and White Biscotti
12 tablespoons butter room temperature
1 ⅓ cups of granulated sugar
½ teaspoon salt
3 teaspoons baking powder
2 tablespoons vanilla extract
4 large eggs room temperature
4 cups all-purpose flour
¼ cup Dutch-process cocoa powder
1 teaspoon espresso powder
1 cup mini chocolate chips
½ cup melted dark chocolate
2 Tablespoons melted white chocolate
Line up biscotti on baking sheet and bake 30-40 minutes.
Pipe a line of dark chocolate down the center of each biscotti. Use a small knife to spread to the edges. Pipe 5 white dots down the center of each chocolate covered biscotti. Draw a toothpick through the dots to create a heart pattern.
This biscotti was amazing. If you're looking for a perfect recipe that appeals to both chocolate AND vanilla biscotti lovers, this is IT! If only choosing countertop granite was as easy as choosing a biscotti recipe. 😂 (I can't help it. 😅)
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