August 31, 2012
I had dinner with a friend last night and as I was driving home, under an almost-blue moon (which is tonight, by the way), with the windows down and the sunroof open, I felt a change in the air. It was the change that comes in the summer when evenings get slightly cooler and temperatures dip into the 60s for the first time. And even though it’s supposed to get a little warmer here for the weekend than it’s been the last couple of beautiful days, I’m eagerly waiting for those nights when I can turn off the air conditioning and sleep with the windows open. Which should be any day now. I hope. As I wait, I’ll just savor these remaining warm summer days and keep sipping on something cold and refreshing like this Strawberry-Mango Smoothie.
Fresh strawberries, frozen mangoes, yogurt and mango nectar are blended until creamy, smooth, sweet and tangy. I prefer to use frozen fruit in my smoothies as opposed to ice because I like the texture of the frozen fruit but obviously you can use fresh fruit and ice instead. Also, if you can’t find mango nectar (which I find in the international foods section of my grocery store), simply substitute orange juice or apple juice. Really, just throw in whatever you want. Smoothies are a sweet ending or a good accompaniment to a weekend brunch, as a way to get a couple servings of fruit in you, or just to cool off on a hot day. Whatever your day brings you, I hope you have fun today or tonight and do something you wouldn’t normally do, something off the cuff and unexpected. That way when you tell your kids/friends your story, you can officially say, “I did it once in a blue moon.”
Have a great weekend everyone!
Strawberry-Mango Smoothies (makes 2 smoothies)
- 1 cup strawberries, quartered
- 1 cup frozen mangoes
- 1/2 cup mango nectar or fruit juice
- 1 6-ounce carton fat-free strawberry yogurt
Place all ingredients in a blender and blend on high for one minute until smooth. Garnish with fresh strawberries or mango slices.
Place all ingredients in a blender and blend on high for one minute until smooth.
Garnish with fresh strawberries or mangoes.
August 30, 2012
I’ve mentioned before that I’m not a big potato eater but if I’m making brunch, it only seems natural to have some kind of potato on the side. I admit I’m a big fan of a certain hashbrown from a certain golden arched restaurant chain but I just don’t allow myself to eat those buttery, greasy, delicious patties. And since I don’t have the first clue as to how to make said hashbrowns or love potatoes enough to really make attempt to make them, I’m settling for simple cubed, fresh potatoes - Lemon and Chive Potatoes.
Quartered potatoes are tossed with olive oil and roasted in the oven until perfectly browned before being tossed with fresh lemon zest and chopped chives. So simple. These potatoes don’t feel heavy and are a cinch to make. If you look at the recipe for these potatoes, you’ll see that I didn’t omit an ingredient but an entire process. I didn’t feel like spending a lot of time on potatoes (sorry, spuds, but you’re just not my favorite vegetable) so instead of grilling them, I roasted them in the oven. If you don’t want to spend a lot of time over the grill or the stove, waiting for the potatoes to get brown and crisp, toss them in the oven instead and take a seat. Enjoy your coffee because you can.
Toss potatoes with 1 1/2 tbsp. olive oil in a medium bowl.
Layer them in an even layer on a baking sheet and bake in a 450°F oven for 40-45 minutes, turning once halfway through.
Return potatoes to same bowl and sprinkle with lemon zest, chives, salt, and remaining 1 1/2 tbsp. oil, then toss to coat evenly.
Overall Rating: Like It
Source: Adapted from Sunset Magazine
August 28, 2012
It’s hard to believe that this coming weekend is Labor Day already. My how time is flying. While it’s sad to say an unofficial goodbye to summer, I’m sure you are like me and welcome a 3-day weekend (if you get one, that is). Long weekends always put me in the mood for brunch so I got started a little early and I’m bringing you some brunch foods to get you ready for the weekend. Eggs, potatoes, fruit and a creamy smoothie are just what I have a mind. Up first, Fluffy Florentine Frittata.
Egg whites are beat until fluffy and doubled in size before being folded into a mixture of yolks, spinach, and ricotta cheese. The end result is a light, fresh frittata that is both filling and healthy. A pinch of nutmeg brings out the flavor of the spinach and a topping of parmesan cheese adds a lovely salty bite. I have to admit, I don’t often make any of Rachael Ray’s recipes and after making this recipe, I’m really not sure why. This was one of the best frittatas I’ve ever had and it was so easy to make. Beating the egg whites is the key to keeping this frittata light. Frittatas have intimidated me before but no more. I will use this recipe every time with all different kinds of veggies.
In a medium skillet, heat the olive oil over medium heat and add the garlic. Cook until softened.
In a bowl, beat the egg whites until stiff peaks form.
In another largers bowl, beat the egg yolks and stir in the spinach and ricotta cheese; season with the salt, pepper and nutmeg.
Fold in the egg whites.
Pour the mixture into the hot skillet and cook over medium heat until just set around the edges, about 2 minutes.
Transfer the frittata to a 400°F preheated oven and bake until golden and fluffy, about 15 minutes.
Sprinkle the parmesan cheese over the top and bake for 2 minutes. Cut into wedges and serve immediately.
Overall Rating: Love It
Source: EveryDay by Rachael Ray