Sunday, September 30, 2012

136.6…Wardrobe Change

Friday night’s dinner was awesome. Karl Strauss recently opened nearby and my husband decided to pick up dinner there. I chose the Mediterranean Salad (Cucumber, tomato, romaine lettuce, radicchio, red onions, feta, Kalamata olives, grilled flatbread, basil, and Greek dressing).

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The salad was amazing! I ordered it with the grilled chicken and loved every bite!

After dinner we took the kids to meet some friends at a local high school football game. It was their homecoming game and it was pretty fun actually. I went to a really small all-girls high school so I didn’t have the whole football thing. It was fun to watch the homecoming king and queen get crowned as well as watching some crashers dressed like gorillas run across the field during the half time performance while security ran after them.

Saturday morning’s spin class got cancelled so I went with my husband to watch my son’s tennis lesson. While I was there I ate a Nature Valley bar for breakfast. I’m really liking this bar!

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Lunch was a tuna sandwich with pickles. Plain, simple and delicious.

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I took the kids to their scout program and then got ready for our neighborhood’s “couples mixer.” Every quarter someone in the group hosts the mixer at their house. You bring a bottle of wine and an appetizer and always have  a good time!

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There were so many delicious appetizers! Lots of salami wrapped things and caprese type salads.

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I brought my famous Ham & Cheese Puff Pastry which is in the middle below:

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After that party was over, I came home to change for party number two. I don’t think I’ve ever done a wardrobe change in one night before. I guess there’s a first for everything!

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Party number two was a charity event hosted by some friends. We danced the rest of the night away! There was glitter all over the dance floor and now there’s a glitter trail leading from my door to my bedroom. Nice.

This morning all I wanted was spicy eggs.

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Scrambled egg beaters, salsa, Tabasco, green onions and lots of shredded cheddar cheese. Yum!

My sister in law is coming over with her kids soon and then tonight it’s Burger Night at the club! I’m ready for a fabulous burger for sure!!

Have you ever done a wardrobe change in one evening?

Friday, September 28, 2012

135.8…Steak, Sushi and Much More

I have so many delicious meals to talk about! It all started Wednesday night. My husband and I took some friends out to dinner at Mastro’s Steakhouse in Beverly Hills to say goodbye before they move to Nashville. I ordered a glass of Cabernet while we waited for them to arrive. Then the yumminess began.

To start I ordered the Wedge Salad.

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I actually announced while eating this: “I wish I could eat this forever.” The bacon was so delicious….it took all my might not to finish this salad. It was big and I knew there were other delicious items on their way.

We shared a ton (too many) of sides starting with a gigantic bowl of French fries.

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Amazing creamed spinach:

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More amazing creamed corn:

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And the ultimate of sides: Gorgonzola Mac & Cheese:

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I could have just eaten that for dinner.  But no…there was fabulous steak to be had! Fortunately I split one with my husband or it was possible I could have exploded.

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The lone French fry.

And no. We did not stop there.

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Mastro’s famous Butter Cake. This thing is insane. Insane, I tell you!  Let’s just say I slept like a champ that night. :)

Yesterday morning’s breakfast was simple. After the meal the night before, I didn’t need a big breakfast. Toasted English muffin with butter.

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I drove back to San Diego and met Lisa and Annette at Luna Grill for lunch. I ordered the Greek salad with chicken kabob.

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Afterwards I got my nails done and came home to get ready for a Hale Bob fashion show at our club with all my girl friends. We sipped champagne, snacked on some cheese and watched an exciting fashion show for the Hale Bob fall line. I didn’t take any pictures but here’s one my friend Annette took of Dina, Lisa, Lauren and I.

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I did not eat enough last night so I was pretty hungry when I woke up this morning. I opted for a breakfast sandwich made of egg beaters, low fat Swiss cheese and a toasted wheat English muffin.

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I took the kids to school, did some volunteering there for a bit and then met some friends at Love Boat sushi for lunch. I was SO excited. I love that place!

I had a couple pieces of both yellow tail and tuna sushi.

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I also ordered my favorite roll: Wasabi Roll.

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If you have any sinus issues, this is the roll for you. It will clear them right up.

I ran some errands afterwards and then picked up the kids from school. Tonight we are taking them to meet some friends to watch a local high school’s football game. This is something I haven’t done before…should be fun! Enjoy your evening!

Any fun plans for the weekend?

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

137.0…Cheesy Chicken & Rice Bake

Another delicious masterpiece was created in my kitchen last night: Cheesy Chicken & Rice Bake.  It may not look like the prettiest thing but it sure tasted great! What I liked about it was I could throw it together quickly and bake it. It’s no secret…I love casserole type dishes.

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Cheesy Chicken & Rice Bake (Serves 4-6)

Recipe slightly adapted from How Sweet It Is

2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, grilled and shredded

4 cups cooked brown rice

3/4 cup frozen corn

1 15 ounce can black beans, drained and rinsed

1 cup plain Greek yogurt or sour cream

1 4 ounce can green chilies

1/2 cup chunky salsa

1 cup grated cheddar & monterey jack cheese  + more for topping if desired

cilantro for garnish

Preheat oven to 350. In a large bowl, combine all ingredients except for cilantro and mix thoroughly to combine. Make sure the yogurt/sour cream and cheese is stirred in throughout the entire bowl. Season with salt and pepper if desired. Transfer to an oven-safe dish and top with extra cheese if you would like. Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until heated through. Garnish with chopped cilantro.

To make this process easier, you can use rotisserie chicken!

Printable Recipe

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It tastes great with sour cream and salsa on the side. Oh, and don’t forget the hot sauce!

To go with it, I served a simple salad with ranch dressing.  I think I need to get more creative with my salads…they are looking a little sad.

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This morning’s breakfast was a toasted English muffin with peanut butter and a side of strawberries.

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I got packed up and headed towards Los Angeles to visit my dad. On the way, I stopped at Starbucks for a latte.

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I also picked up lunch for the family at El Pollo Loco. I ordered the two piece chicken, flour tortillas, and double cole slaw. Yum!

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Today is my dad’s last treatment (hopefully) and that’s where I am right now. Hope this does the trick!!

Tonight my husband and I are going out to dinner with a couple of friends who are moving to Nashville. I’m looking forward to the dinner but not to seeing them go! :(

Are you a fan of casseroles? Do you have a particular favorite to share?

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

137.2…Pasta Bolognese

We are big pasta fans over here. When my husband gets home from work and asks “what’s for dinner?” and my answer is “pasta”, he almost jumps for joy. When the answer is “pasta and meat sauce”, well, then he goes through the roof.

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Recently Biz from My Bizzy Kitchen (check out her blog-her recipes are awesome!) sent me a recipe for Pasta Bolognese. I had to try it! I’m so glad I did….it was delicious!

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Pasta Bolognese

Slightly adapted from My Bizzy Kitchen

  • 1 ounce cleaned mushrooms
  • 1 1/4 cup white wine
  • 1/4 cup carrot
  • 3 ounces pancetta (I omitted because my husband doesn’t eat pork)
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 28 ounce can whole tomatoes, with juice
  • 1 1/4 pound meatloaf mix (pork, veal and beef) (I just used beef)
  • 1 1/2 cups 2% milk
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste (oops! 
  • 1/2 tsp dried basil
  • salt and pepper to taste

Bring wine to simmer in dutch oven over medium heat; reduce heat to low and simmer until wine is reduced to 2 tablespoons, about 20 minutes, remove to small dish and set aside.

Meanwhile, put the carrots and mushrooms in a food processor and mince.  Set aside.

Pulse the pancetta in the food processor and mince.  Set aside.

Pulse tomatoes until pureed.  Set aside.

Heat butter in dutch oven and add pancetta and cook  until browned, about 3 minutes. Add the carrot and mushroom mixture and cook until softened, about 5 minutes.  Add garlic and sugar and cook for 30 seconds.  Add meat mixture and cook for 1 minute, breaking up the meat.  Add milk and stir to continue to break up the meat and summer for about 18 minutes. 

Stir in tomato paste and cook for 1 minute.  Add tomatoes, wine,  basil and salt and pepper to taste.  Bring to a simmer over medium-high heat, then reduce to medium and simmer until the liquid is reduced and starts to thicken, about 20 minutes.

Printable Recipe

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The sauce was a bit watery but the flavor was excellent! I added some parmesan cheese and red pepper flakes to make the perfect bowl of pasta.

To go with the pasta, I made a simple salad of mixed greens, garlic salt and light Caesar dressing.

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This morning’s breakfast was pineapple Chobani yogurt, Cascadian Farms granola, strawberries and raspberries.

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I took the kids to school, got my hair done (yeah!) and met Lisa and Annette at Wahoo’s for more fish tacos!

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Yes!!! I hope I never get sick of these!

There’s another new recipe happening for dinner tonight….I’m on a roll!

What is your favorite type of sauce for pasta? 

Monday, September 24, 2012

137.0…Weekly Burger Time

Yesterday I kept my lunch light and simple: a turkey and Swiss cheese sandwich.

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I didn’t want to ruin my dinner. I was very excited about it. For the last few weeks, we’ve been going to our club for “Burger Night” on Sunday. You get to build your own burger. I get a different one each time.

Last night we took Joe & Alicia and their kids to experience the fabulousness of burger night.

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The sun was setting and the weather was perfect for dinning outside. It was also perfect for a refreshing glass of Sauvignon Blanc.

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This time I chose the beef burger with arugula, tomato, red onion, garlic aioli and provolone cheese with a side of sweet potato fries.

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Best burger choice yet!! I can’t wait to repeat this one! I really look forward to Sundays and burger night!

This morning I had a toasted English muffin with peanut butter for breakfast.

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No fruit. I’m all out! :(

I took the kids to school and then ran some errands, including Costco (to get some fruit!). I stopped at Wahoo’s for the taco diet.

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By the way…let me me explain how we order the tacos: flour tortillas, fish, extra cabbage, little bit of guacamole and cheese, pico de gallo and the green sauce on the side. I highly recommend them this way.

I picked the kids up from school and now I’m making dinner. A new recipe, no less!! ;)

If you could build the perfect burger, what would be on it?

Sunday, September 23, 2012

136.8…Mexican Pizza

I love pizza. I also love Mexican food. Why not combine the best of both!

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Introducing the Mexican pizza! We had this for dinner on Friday night and polished it off! It was easy to throw together and was delicious!

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Mexican Pizza

Slightly adapted from Annie’s Eats

Ingredients

Pizza dough
1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
½ tsp. cumin
¼ tsp. paprika
¼ tsp. cayenne
3 tbsp. chicken broth, veggie broth or water
3 oz. shredded cheddar cheese
3 oz. shredded monterey jack cheese
1 jalapeño, seeded and diced
¼ cup red onion, finely chopped
1/3 cup tomato, seeded and diced
1/3 cup corn (fresh or frozen)
3-4 tbsp. chopped fresh cilantro
Salt and pepper, to taste

Directions
  • To make the pizza, preheat the oven and a pizza stone at 500˚ F for at least 30 minutes.  Roll out the pizza dough into a 12-14 inch round.  Lightly brush the perimeter of the dough with olive oil.

  • Combine the black beans, cumin, paprika and cayenne in the bowl of a food processor.  Puree until ground into a paste.  Scrape down the sides of the bowl.  With the processor running, add the chicken broth through the feed tube until a smooth mixture is formed.  Spread the bean puree onto the shaped pizza crust in an even layer.  Layer evenly with the cheddar and monterey jack cheese.  Sprinkle the jalapeño, red onion, tomato and corn over the cheese layer.  Season with salt and pepper if desired.

  • Transfer the pizza to the preheated pizza stone and bake until the cheese is melted and bubbling and the crust is lightly browned, about 10-12 minutes.  Remove from the oven and let cool slightly before slicing and serving. Add the cilantro.

Printable Recipe

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By the way, I recommend dipping each pizza bite in ranch dressing mixed with hot sauce. Just a thought. :)

Yesterday my son helped my husband and I make pancakes for breakfast. They were especially delicious!

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I went to a fabulous spin class and then came home. Lunch was a tuna sandwich. There were only the ends left on the bread so I was stuck eating those. They aren’t my favorite but no one else in my house will eat them. I took one for the team.

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Dinner was date night with Joe & Alicia and Delicias! They recently acquired a new chef so we were excited to try it.

Our evening started at the bar with a glass of wine.

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When we were seated, we decided to order an appetizer for the table. We ordered the “Daily Toast” which was grilled bread with a bean mixture, avocado slices and harissa yogurt sauce. Fabulous.

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For a starter, I ordered the Bison Tartare. Another winner. It was a bit spicy and super flavorful.

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For my entree I ordered the Local White Bass (warm summer bean salad, house pancetta, pistou vinaigrette).

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This was the perfect light dish on a warm evening like last night. Loved it!

My husband and I decided to split the Mexican Chocolate Sundae (strawberries, spiced almonds and churros) for dessert.

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There was way too much fruit in there for me so I let my husband have at it. He ate it all just fine by himself. :)

Alicia and I:

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Hubby and I:

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We really enjoyed our meal at Delicias. Props to the new chef!

This morning I just didn’t feel like making anything for breakfast. I’ve been trying to clean/organize the house and just wanted something fast.

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That’s where the Larabar comes in. Love them for a fast breakfast or snack.

I think at some point I will take a break and hit the gym. Enjoy the rest of your weekend!

Are you a fan of the Mexican pizza? Do you have a recipe for one to share?