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Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Caramel Apple Cider

There is nothing like having holiday drinks by the Christmas tree with friends. I can't take credit for this drink. Thank you Ms. Jamie for making these drinks for us. We wanted something festive to help celebrate the end of finals and this drink did not disappoint! So yummmy!!
For the rim, dip the glass in caramel then dip in a mixture of brown sugar, regular sugar, and cinnamon.

For one drink....In a shaker, put one count of green apple pucker, three counts of salted caramel vodka (or regular vodka!), one count of buttershots, one count of caramel apple liqueur (you could go without this but it makes the drink super yummy and sweet), and a half of can of cider (we used down east cider!).

Friday, December 12, 2014

Greek Spinach Pie

I almost couldn't blog this recipe because we practically devoured the spinach pie! I had to hide this last piece in the fridge so I could get a picture of it. This was my first time making spinach pie and I was happily surprised at how easy it was. The phyllo dough was a little finicky to deal with, but overall not so bad!!! I hope you get a chance to try it.

Ingredients:
  • 2 pounds of spinach (1 pound=16 oz bag)
  • 3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 white onion, chopped
  • 1 bunch of green onion, chopped (including the white parts)
  • 1/2 cup chopped parsley
  • 8 oz feta cheese (about 1 cup)
  • 1/2 cup ricotta cheese
  • 2 eggs
  • 18 sheets frozen phyllo dough, thawed at room temperature
  • olive oil
Recipe:
  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  • First, you are going to make the filling. Heat a pasta pan on medium-high heat. Add half of the spinach and cook, tossing occassionally. As the spinach starts to wilt, add the rest of the spinach handfuls at a time. Cook until all the spinach is wilted. Transfer the spinach to a colander. Once cool enough to touch, squeeze out as much of the water as you can.
  • Heat 3 tablespoons of olive oil in a pan. Add the scallion, onion, and garlic. Cook until soft. Stir in the spinach and turn off the heat. Let the spinach mixture cool. Stir in cheeses, eggs and parsley.
  • In a baking dish, lightly coat the bottom of the pan with olive oil. Lightly oil about 12 phyllo sheets on one side and lay the sheets in the pan oiled side up one at a time. Leave some sheets hanging off the side of pan.
  • Spread the spinach filling into the pan.
  • Wrap the phyllo dough hanging over the sides around the filling. 
  • Take the remaining phyllo sheets, and one at a time, oil the sheet and lay on top of the filling. Wrap the edges of the phyllo dough into the sides of the pan. 
  • Oil the top of the pie. 
  • Cut desired pieces now before you bake. Once you bake the pie, the phyllo dough will be crispy and it will be it difficult to cut into pieces.
  • Bake the pie for about 45 minute.

Friday, November 14, 2014

Pomegranate Guacamole

I'm a guacamole addict and while you may think of guacamole as a summer thing, I think of it as a year round thing. In fact, pomegranate guacamole is my favorite especially around the holidays. The red and green colors just pop and are so festive. I think its a perfect holiday appetizer because its light and fresh and is the perfect contrast to all those heavy delicious holiday meals that we love.  

Pomegranates are in season right now which makes them easily accessible, but they can be quite a pain for those who lack patience such as myself. Trying to dig out all of the seeds can be especially frustrating and time consuming, not to mention pomegranates stain your hands bloody red. So here is a little trick...check out the section of your grocery store where they have pre-cut fruit to see if they have ready to eat pomegranate seeds. Yes, it might be a little more expensive but if you've ever tried to de-seed a pomegranate before, I think you would agree that its worth it. Otherwise, goodluck.
Ingredients:
  •  3 avocados
  • 1 cup pomegranate seeds
  • 1 lime, juiced
  • 1/2 of a red onion, chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 tbsp chopped cilantro
  • 1/2 jalapeno, deseeded and diced
  • 1 tsp salt 
  • 1 tsp pepper
Recipe:
  •  Halve and pit the avocados. Spoon avocado into a bowl.
  • Add 1/2 of the pomegranate seeds, lime juice, red onion, garlic, cilantro, jalapeno, salt and pepper to the avocado. Stir gently.
  • Place guacamole in a serving bowl and add rest of the pomegranate seeds on top. 
  • Serve with chips

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Game Day Nachos

A quick snack was needed for game day/sunday fun day so I decided to whip up some nachos since I'm the nacho queen.  I shared my cheese recipe below. It's super easy. I use it for a lot of different recipes including mac and cheese. I'm a cheese lover. Can you tell? Put down the velveeta people and try out my recipe. You'll thank me later. 

Ingredients:

  • 1 bag shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1 block gruyere cheese (its a little bit on the expensive side but SO worth it)
  • 1-1/2 cup whole milk
  • 3 tbsp butter
  • 3 tbsp flour
  • chips
  • your favorite nacho toppings: salsa, sour cream, olives, tomatoes, jalapeƱo 
Recipe:
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  • Melt the butter in a sauce pan 
  • Whisk in the flour
  • Gradually add milk and stir until there are no clumps
  • Add cheese. I didn't measure exactly how much cheese I used. One bag of shredded cheese and half the block of gruyere should be enough, but add as much as you like.
  • Spray a baking sheet with nonstick spray
  • Spread out the chips evenly on the baking sheet
  • Pour cheese over the chips
  • Bake the chips for about 5-8 mins
  • Enjoy the nachos with your favorite toppings

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Caramel Apple Martini

I love fall and I am always up for anything apple or pumpkin flavored. I found some caramel apple liqueur at the store and decided to make a caramel apple martini with a caramel graham cracker rim. It is the perfect sweet fall drink. I was definitely inspired to make a fall drink from our trip to New Hampshire this past weekend. The trees were so beautiful and I was lucky to capture the picture below.

 Ingredients:
  • 2 parts Apple Caramel Liqueur
  • 2 parts Kahlua
  • 1-1/2 parts Salted Karamel Vodka
  • Caramel and graham cracker crumbs for the rim
Recipe:
  • Dip the rims of the martini glasses in caramel then in graham cracker crumbs
  • Shake the ingredients with ice in a cocktail shaker
  • Strain into the prepared martini glasses

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Frozen Mango Margaritas

I was away visiting family this weekend and decided to make some mango margaritas. I know that frozen margaritas are a summer drink but I just couldn't help myself. I didn't have my camera on me, but it turned out to be a great recipe so I took the picture using my good old iphone.

The recipe below makes one margarita. Double or triple the recipe to make some more for friends...or for yourself! This recipe would go great with any of your favorite frozen fruits so if mango isn't your favorite, try something else!!

Ingredients:
  • 1 Cup Frozen Mango
  • Handful of Ice Cubes
  • 1/4 Cup Triple Sec
  • 1/2 Cup Tequila
  • Fresh lime juice from 2 limes
Recipe:
  • Simple! Just blend all the ingredients together!!

Sunday, October 5, 2014

Fall Flowers Centerpiece

 I was so happy to be surprised with these beautiful fall flowers this weekend and I decided to arrange them in some vintage bottles that I found at a local antique shop. I love to mix and match different bottles together. 

Every great meal deserves a fabulous tablescape and centerpiece. I hope these pictures give you some inspiration on how you can decorate your table with fall flowers. Its such an easy way to brighten up your table!!
 
I placed the bottles in the center of my burlap table runner. I love the vintage and rustic look of it.
  
I also had these glass bottles from Ikea that matched nicely with the antique bottles. You can purchase the bottles from Ikea here.

Now go have fun decorating your table!!

Saturday, September 27, 2014

Mini Strawberry Cheesecake

My friend Amie had a jewelry party last night and I volunteered to make strawberry cheesecake bars. I was in a rush yesterday and I only had a couple hours for the cheesecake to sit in the fridge before cutting them. When I took it out to cut it into squares, the cheesecake basically turned into a sloppy mushy mess. That's when I admitted defeat and ran to the grocery store to pick up some cookies before the party. When I checked on the cheesecake again this morning, the cheesecake was perfect. Go figure! The recipe turned from being a disaster to a success just by letting the cheesecake sit overnight in the fridge. I should have known better! So take my advice, and make this recipe the night before. It will save you a lot of headache!
 
Instead of cutting the cheesecake into squares to make bars, I decided to use a biscuit cutter to make round mini cheesecakes. They can be a little messy because the tops can slide off, but I think it makes a great look. If you are having a party i would suggest serving them in cupcake liners.

Recipe Source: roxanashomebaking

Ingredients:
  • 1 1/2 cup graham crackers crumbs
  • 4 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 3 packages (8 oz each) cream cheese, room temperature
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup strawberry pie filling (Note: you can use any pie filling you like. The original recipe was made with a blueberry pie filing.)
Recipe:
  • Preheat the oven to 325 F. 
  • Line a 13 X 9 baking pan with parchment paper leaving some paper hanging off the sides.
  • Mix the graham cracker crumbs with the melted butter and press evenly on the bottom of the prepared pan. Place in refrigerator.
  • In a mixing bowl, combine the cream cheese and sugar. Mix until light and fluffy.
  • Mix in one egg at a time to the cream cheese mixture. 
  • Stir in vanilla extract.
  • Remove the cheesecake crust from the refrigerator. 
  • Pour 2/3 of the cheesecake filling into the pan.
  • Spoon the pie filing over the cheesecake layer.
  • Cover the pie filling with the remaining cheesecake mixture. Make sure that you do not stir the pie filling and cheesecake mixture together. You want separate layers.
  • Bake the cheesecake in the oven for 50 minutes or until center is set. 
  • Turn the oven off, open the door and let the cheesecake cool down in the oven for 1 hour.
  • Remove the cheesecake from the oven and refrigerate overnight.

Friday, September 12, 2014

Classic Peanut Butter Cookies

I was craving something sweet last night so I decided to make these peanut butter cookies. I love to make peanut butter cookies because I usually already have all the ingredients on hand. This is the perfect classic recipe. I hope you enjoy them as much as I did. Oh, and don't forget the milk!!

Recipe Source: Food Network

Ingredients
  • 1 cup sugar, plus extra to roll the dough in
  • 1 stick of butter
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup peanut butter (I used chunky but any peanut butter you like will do!)
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1-1/2 cups flour
Recipe:
  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees
  • Spray cookie sheet with pam
  • Cream together butter and sugar in a large bowl
  • Add the egg and vanilla, mix until combined
  • Stir in your dry ingredients: salt, baking soda, and flour
  • When dough is combined, roll dough into 1 inch balls, then roll in sugar
  • Place dough balls on baking sheet
  • Flatten dough balls with fork creating a criss cross shape
  • Bake for 12 minutes

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

One Pot Vegetarian Chili

This is quite possibly the easiest chili recipe EVER. Sometimes my best meals result from being too lazy to go to the grocery store and trying to cook something based on the things I already have in my kitchen. I haven't been to the grocery store in a few days so I was only working with canned food and things in my freezer. Thankfully, I came up with this chili and it was pretty yummy!

Ingredients:
  • Bag of frozen onions and peppers (bought in the frozen food aisle)
  • Taco seasoning packet (have 2 of the packets on hand just in case you need some more flavor)
  • Corn Starch
  • Can of corn (15 oz)
  • Can of black beans (15oz)
  • Can of pinto beans (15oz)
 Recipe:
  • Spray a deep pan with pam and place on medium to high heat
  • Pour in about 3/4 of the frozen onions and peppers
  • While the onions and peppers are defrosting, rinse the black beans and pinto beans in a strainer
  • Pour the beans into the pan with the onions and peppers
  • Pour the entire can of corn into the pan including the liquid
  • It should look liquidy at this point but thats good!
  • Sprinkle in the taco seasoning and let the mixture boil for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally
  • In a small dish, mix a tablespoon of corn starch into water
  • Pour corn starch mixture into the pan, stirring frequently
  • If the corn starch does not thicken the chili to your liking then you can add some more!
  • Serve with your favorite chili toppings

Friday, August 29, 2014

Picnic in the Park

At the beginning of the summer I made a checklist of all the activities I wanted to do over the summer. I was really excited about having 3 months off from school and I wanted to make sure I enjoyed every second. Well...it didn't go exactly as planned. As the summer went on and I got busy with my internship, I slowly started to forget about the checklist. One of the things on my checklist was to go on a picnic. There is a beautiful park right by my house and I wanted to take advantage of it. Since this weekend is the unofficial end of the summer I figured it was now or never so off to the park we went!! It turned out to be the perfect night. I hope these pictures give you a little inspiration on how you could spend the long weekend!



My Blog Was Stolen!!!

Yes, you read it right. My blog was stolen! It has been a frustrating summer trying to figure out what happened and if I could get my blog back. After I realized that I couldn't, I began the process of transferring EVERYTHING from my old blog to this new domain.

The cliff notes version of the story is that my blog domain name went up for sale in June. I was unaware that my credit card to automatically renew the domain was incorrect and someone bought the domain name right from underneath my nose. They then wanted me to pay $500 to buy it back!!! Um no thanks! I'd rather go on a shopping spree at JCrew. Sooooo I've transferred everything to girlsgonefood.org. This is our new home.

The feeling of starting over has definitely been hard after I've put so much work into this blog and I finally felt like it was going somewhere!! This is a new beginning though and I have hope that it won't take long to get back to where we were before! Thanks for being patient!! New exciting posts to come soon!

 

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Clean Eating Taco Salad

Surprise, surprise! Here is another taco dish, but this time in the form of a salad. I've been on a kick lately and I can't help it!! This is a guilt free taco salad. It is perfect for lunch or for a light dinner! I don't really have any measurements for this recipe just because you can put on this salad whatever you would like. These were the ingredients that I already had in my fridge so I went for it!
Ingredients:
  • ground turkey
  • lettuce
  • salsa
  • cucumber
  • avocado
  • black beans
  • corn
  • tomato
  • spices: cumin, chili powder, onion powder, garlic powder, red pepper flakes, salt, pepper
Recipe: 
  •  Brown ground turkey in a pan and drain fat.
  • Add spices to your liking (i like to use a lot of cumin to give it some mexican flavor)
  • Assemble salad with the ground turkey and your favorite toppings. Use salsa for dressing.

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Healthy Tacos

I always love talking to new readers about my blog. Today's post is dedicated to my newest reader (Hi Ericka!). We had an entire convo this morning about pico de gallo. Thanks for inspiring me to put up this post today!
This post is especially important to me because I L-O-V-E tacos, and I take tacos VERY seriously. Taco Tuesday is by FAR my favorite day of the week. I would only post a recipe for tacos if it met my standards. These tacos are awesome because they are super healthy for you (Disclaimer: they are healthy to my standards hahah. I'm not a nutritionist by any means. See my post on bacon wrapped tater tots for a reference hahah). I made some great subsitutions to this recipe to make these tacos healthier but still taste amazeballs!! Instead of a taco shell, I used a fiber one wrap (which is only 80 calories) and cut the wrap into 4 taco shells. Then, I used ground turkey instead of ground beef and plain chobani instead of sour cream. Top it off with pico de gallo and some hot sauce and you've got some delish tacos!!

Ingredients
  • 1 lb ground turkey
  • chopped onion 
  • chopped pepper
  • taco seasoning packet (Note: I used McCormick mild taco seasoning...try to find one that is low sodium)
  • fiber one wraps
  • your favorite toppings: pico de gallo, hot sauce, chobani, cheese, lettuce, jalapenos, olives

Recipe
  • Spray a pan with nonstick cooking spray and saute peppers and onions.
  • Once cooked, place the peppers and onions on a separate plate.
  • Spray pan again with nonstick cooking spray, and brown the ground turkey.
  • After draining the excess fat from the pan, add the peppers and onions to the cooked ground turkey meat.
  • Stir in taco seasoning mix and water (follow the directions on your seasoning packet).
  • Cup up the fiber one wrap into taco shells (I cut the wrap like a pizza, one wrap making 4 shells)
  • Add taco meat and your favorite toppings to each shell.

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Wakeup Breakfast Smoothie

Most Sunday mornings I like to start the morning off right with a healthy breakfast. After all the takeout that I consumed this past Friday and Saturday, my body was especially ready for some healthy goodness this morning.
This is one of those smoothies that you will look forward to drinking. It tastes super yummy and makes you energized for the rest of your day. I originally got the recipe from Dr. Oz's 3-Day Detox Cleanse. If you are interested in checking out the entire cleanse, you can go to Dr. Oz's website here.

Ingredients: (for one smoothie)
  • 1 banana
  • 1/4 cup spinach
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup raspberries
  • 1 tbsp almond butter
  • 1 tbsp flax seed
  • 2 squeezes of lemon
Recipe:
  • Blend all ingredients together. Easy peasy lemon squeezy!!


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