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Friday, February 5, 2016

Carrot Cake Cookies


I love carrot cake, but I kinda hate making it.

Why?  Because then I know how much oil and calories are in the thing!  So I keep trying to reinvent the carrot cake, so I can enjoy it without the guilt…well less anyway.

First, I made carrot cake pancakes (twice!) and uh, super delish.  Actually, I want to give those another makeover, now that I think about it – with grated carrots instead of pureed.  Or would the kids mutiny?  Hmmm…more thought is required on that.

The next (slightly) healthier version of carrot cake is the cookie version.  These aren’t greasy (well, any more so than any other cookie), plus there’s oats – those make anything healthy, right?  But the real reason these are healthier is portion control.

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Owl Heart Treats


As a parent, I love Valentine’s Day.  Instead of focusing on the romance (because who wants to find a sitter just to fight crowds anyways?), we focus on family.  Even though we show our love for one another every day, I love having a special day to refocus.

Plus, there are all the treats to take to Valentine parties!! 

This week, Spud & I raided the Valentine section (and kinda some of the leftover Christmas candy, too) and came up with these cutie patootie little owls!

Sunday, January 31, 2016

January Reads


It’s the end of January already!  I didn’t think I’d have much time for reading this month, but with vacations, combined with a few sick days and a couple shorter books, I sure got through a lot!

What are you reading now?


Food: A Love Story | My Review | ★★★★★  (Foodies Read)







Onyx (Lux #2)| My Review | ★★★★












A Dark Lure | My Review | ★★★★   (Kindle First)




Charade | My Review | ★★★  




Tequila Mockingbird | My Review | ★★★★★  (Foodies Read)




Harry Potter & the Prisoner of Azkaban | My Review | ★★★★★     (Read to my Children)










Saturday, January 30, 2016

Food 'n Flix Recipe Round Up


It’s the end of January and now time to round up all of the delicious Food ‘n Flix recipes inspired by the movie Failure to Launch!



Failure to Launch is a Romantic Comedy.  The premise is that Tripp is in his 30’s and still lives at home with his parents…with no plans to leave.  His parents hire Paula, a professional interventionist to simulate a relationship with Tripp to encourage him to move out.  There is a stellar cast, including Sarah Jessica Parker (Paula), Matthew McConhaughey (Tripp), Bradley Cooper (Tripp friend), and the absolute show stealer: Zooey Deschanel (Paula’s roommate).



Now for the delicious recipes, here in the order in which they posted.



Kimberly from Coffee and Casseroles made a delicious Lentil Taco Salad.  Kimberly was inspired early in the film when a piggish (and creepy, in her opinion) Matthew McConhaughey character rolls out of bed and crushes bunch of tortilla chips with his feet.  She made a delicious meal despite an…unappetizing inspiration!



I made my Japanese Pan Noodles with Steak after being inspired by Tripp & Paula’s date to a sushi restaurant.  I don’t eat seafood, but I did spy some noodles in the background and set out to recreate one of my favorites, carnivore-style!



Elizabeth from The Lawyer’s Cookbook made Candy Sushi, also inspired by the sushi date.  While Elizabeth loves sushi, she’s not about to risk purchasing raw fish, so she took a fun and sweet twist to make sushi out of candy!




Heather from All Roads Lead to the Kitchen was inspired by the Champagne Thursday scene (my favorite in the movie!)  She was so creative, making an amazing Champagne Jelly!  Now that’s taking PB&J up a notch!




Camilla from Culinary Adventures with Camilla was also inspired by champagne Monday…er…Thursday and made an amazing Poached Salmon with Caper-Cream Sauce!  Did I mention the cream sauce has champagne in it? 




Evelyne from CulturEatz made her delicious Raspberry Coconut Protein Bars.  She was inspired by the scene when the guys were bicycling and try to feed a chipmunk a protein bar.  Plus these are a beautiful blush pink from the raspberries, so they get the girly treatment too!




Deb from Kahakai Kitchen made was inspired by tacos seen in the movie, the abundance of seafood and a Wikipedia snafu (you have to click over & see what happened!)  She made some amazing Cajun Shrimp Lettuce Wrap Tacos with Remoulade.



Wendy from A Day in the Life on the Farm made Guava Smashers, the only food actually named in the film (other than a ball park hot dog).  Wendy notes that a Guava Smasher is actually a Whiskey Smash with guava juice!  Check out Wendy’s creative way of juicing the guava!



Tanks for participating, ladies!  And if you want to join in next month, we will be watching The Lunchbox hosted by Camilla from Culinary Adventures with Camilla






Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Chocolate Fake-tini #FoodiesRead


I have a great Valentine’s Treat for the kids today!

This recipe came from a super fun book, Tequila Mockingbird (Goodreads review here).  Right away, the punny title appealed to the bibliophile in me.  Plus I do love a cocktail!



The whole book is hilarious and offers recipes (mostly alcoholic) that all connect in some way with a popular (mostly classic) novels.  Though many of the drinks sounded delicious, I reeeaally wanted to make something based off a book I’d already read.  So I added a TON more books to my to-read list and chose the Chocolate Fake-tini, based on Charlie and the Chocolate Factory!

I read Charlie and the Chocolate Factory out loud to my kids last year and they absolutely loved it.  Spud almost cried when Charlie didn’t find the golden ticket the first time and both boys danced around, cheering when he did find the ticket!

My boys love to drink out of fancy glasses (in fact, for part of their birthday celebrations, they get to drink their milk or juice out of a wine glass all day), so they loved being able to have their chocolate milk out of a martini glass!

Sunday, January 24, 2016

Garlic-Herb Tomato Sauce with Italian Meatballs #SecretRecipeClub





I was missing Secret Recipe Club so much in my January month off, that I decided to jump in and help out with Group D!

It was my pleasure to cook from Chelsy’s blog, Mangia.  Chelsy is a certified personal trainer from a close knit Italian family.  She says she learned to roll a meatball before she learned to ride a bike!  Chelsy also specializes in gluten-free versions of her family’s favorite baked items!

I thought about making one of Chelsy’s amazing soups with this reveal – Creamy Broccoli Cauliflower Soup and Roasted Carrot Soup with Bacon Grilled Cheese Croutons (bacon grilled cheese croutons!!!!!!) were both calling me name.  But then I came across homemade tomato sauce and Italian meatballs and I was sold.  I mean, homemade sauce from an Italian?  Sign me up!

Italian Chicken & Pasta Casserole


Dude, my 8 year old chef in training, dreams of someday being on Chopped Kids.  So he asked me to set up a practice for him today.  That way, when he’s old enough, he’ll be all ready to compete!

We set him up with a basket of mystery ingredients and even taped him revealing his ingredients and cooking.  It was adorable!

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