Thursday, October 31, 2013

Baby Mousetrap Halloween Costume

So I'm OBSESSED with Halloween, so it's only fitting that I have to come up with the most creative / cute costumes for B Man :)  It was his 1st Halloween and all!!  How cute and awesome is this?!

Mouse costume
Toy Cheese
Black Duck tape
PVC piping
Gold spray paint
Furnace Coil
Red Paint

Halloween Craft

I had to post this cause it was so cute and so easy!!!  Just need some waterproof finger paint and your kids foot :)

Friday, October 11, 2013

Sweet Potato Burrito

So Brody is 9 months old - and I'm looking 9 months prego still.....and because I won't make time to work out (I justify that I need to be with Brody when he is awake since I'm a working mom....) - I figured I can concentrate on what I eat and see where that takes me!  This was UBER healthy (prior to that dollop of sour cream!) - and it was really really really good!!!  Ross said "this would be really good with chicken" - go figure...but it was really good even without meat!!  MAKE IT and pray I shed lbs!!

Serves 4
2 medium sweet potatoes
1 1/2 to 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon smoked hot paprika (or chipotle powder)
1/4 teaspoon cayenne
sea salt and black pepper
4 to 6 whole wheat tortillas
2 roasted red peppers (I used jarred)
2 cups cooked black beans or 1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
1+ cup shredded Jack cheese
Avocado Salsa Verde
2 ripe avocados from Mexico
1 cup mild salsa verde, jarred
2 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
1 to 2 teaspoons fresh jalapeño, deseeded and roughly chopped (optional)
1 lime, juiced
1/4 cup packed cilantro leaves
up to 2 tablespoons water, to thin as necessary
sea salt, to taste (optional)
1 1/2 cups chopped romaine lettuce
1 small red onion, finely chopped
finely chopped jalapeño (optional)
sour cream

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit. Scrub and peel the sweet potatoes. Chop them into large, bite-sized chunks, about 1 to 1 1/2-inches wide/long and 1/2-inch deep. Toss the sweet potatoes with the olive oil, cumin, smoked hot paprika, cayenne pepper and salt and pepper. Make sure they are lightly coated in oil on all sides. Pour the sweet potatoes onto a large baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Arrange the sweet potatoes evenly in a single layer. Do not overcrowd. Bake for about 45 minutes, flipping the sweet potato chunks halfway, until they are golden and caramelized around the edges.
Make the avocado sauce: in a food processor or a good blender, combine the avocado flesh, salsa verde, garlic, jalapeño (skip this if your salsa is spicy) and lime juice. Blend. Add the cilantro and blend again. Add water to thin out the sauce if desired; the sauce should glop easily off a spoon. Taste and blend in some sea salt or add another squeeze of lime if necessary. This sauce should taste like a real kick in the mouth; you’ll know you’re done when you can’t stop going in for another spoonful of the stuff.
Make sure the oven is still on at 450 degrees Fahrenheit.* Place your tortillas on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. In the middle of each tortilla, put down a couple strips of roasted red pepper, then pour 1/3 cup black beans down the center and top it all with 1/3 cup roasted sweet potato chunks. Sprinkle 1/4 cup or more of jack cheese on top. Pull one edge of the tortilla over to the center of the burrito, then pull the opposite edge over to overlap a bit. Gently roll the burrito over. Repeat with remaining burritos. Bake your burritos for about 5 minutes on the middle rack, until the cheese is melted and the tortillas are lightly crisp.
Carefully transfer each burrito to a plate. Smother it in avocado sauce, sprinkle with ample romaine lettuce, some chopped red onion, jalapeño if you’d like and a dollop of sour cream. Go at it with a fork.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Beef with Broccoli

Winner, winner - beef dinner!!!  Ross said "I can't even tell the difference between this and Chinese take out" -- what what!!!  This was sooooo easy - and soooo yummy!!  The Rons loved it too!!!  Huge hit!  Made this with brown rice!!!

1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1  tablespoon low-sodium soy sauce
1 tablespoon water
2 tablespoons veggie oil
1 1/2 lbs flank steak, sliced into thin strips

Whisk together the baking soda, sugar, cornstarch, soy sauce, water and veggie oil in a large bowl.  Toss the steak with the marinade to coat.  Cover and refrigerate at least 1 hour, then proceed below.

1/2 cup low-sodium soy sauce
2 tablespoons brown sugar
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons flour
1 tablespoon sherry
3 tablespoons veggie oil
2 heads broccoli, crowns only

In a small bowl, stir together the soy sauce, brown sugar, garlic, flour and sherry until smooth.  Set aside.

In a large wok or saute pan, heat 2 tablespoons of veggie oil over high heat until shimmering.  Add broccoli and saute 3 minutes, stirring often.  Transfer broccoli to a plate.

Reduce heat to medium-high.  Carefully add the remaining tablespoon of oil to the hot pan.  Add the marinated meat and half of the sauce mixture and saute for 3-4 minutes, stirring often,until the meat is cooked through and no longer pink.  Stir in the broccoli and remaining sauce.  Saute for 1 minute more - serve!

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Creamy Brie & Mushroom Pork Chops

Um YUMMY!!!!  This was sooooooo good!!!!!!  I don't even know if I need to say anything else....I loved it, Ross loved it, N-Ron loved it!!!!  Make it!!  (We did white rice under it - perfection!)

Makes 6 servings: OBB
6 lean pork loin chops, trimmed of excess fat (about 1 1/2 pounds)
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/4 cup flour
1 1/2-2 cups sliced mushrooms
1 large white onion, cut in half and cut into 1/4″ slices
2 cloves garlic, minced

2 cups low-fat milk
3 ounces low-fat cream cheese
1 teaspoon kosher salt
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper
1 tablespoon butter 1 tablespoon olive oil
4-5 ounces Brie cheese, trimmed of the rind (don’t kill yourself getting it off, but you want most of the rind gone) and cut into 1/2″ cubes

Rinse the pork chops in cool water and pat them dry with a paper towel. Set aside. In a small bowl, whisk together the flour, garlic powder, onion powder, salt, and pepper. Roll each pork chop in the seasoning mixture and set aside.

Preheat oven to 375. In a large oven-safe skillet, heat the tablespoon of oil over medium-high heat, swirling the pan to coat with oil. When hot, add the pork chops and cook until golden brown on each side. Transfer the pork chops to a plate and set aside. Add the butter to the skillet (try adding 1/2 tablespoon at first and add more if you need to). When it’s melted and bubbly, add the onions, mushrooms, and garlic and saute until the mushrooms are tender and the onions are starting to caramelize.
While the onions are cooking, combine the milk, cream cheese, salt, flour, and coarsely ground black pepper in the jar of a blender and blend until smooth. When the onions have finished cooking, add the sauce mixture and cook until bubbly and thickened. Remove from heat (or turn it to very low) and add the Brie cubes and stir to combine. When the sauce is smooth and the cheese is melted, add the pork chops and cover with a lid. Place the covered pan in the oven and cook for 15-20 minutes or until the sauce is bubbly and the pork chops have reached 165 degrees F. Serve over rice or with boiled baby potatoes.