Sunday, September 9, 2018

What's cooking this week?

I haven't done one of these in FOREVER....haven't done much of anything in forever as far as this place goes. In honor of the fact that I very ambitiously planned a week full of yumminess...I thought this was in order. Also, the girls are painting nicely and I thought I'd take advantage of the next four minutes to myself! 
There's paint on Emmy's let me make this snappy....
Sunday: Grandpa's Marinara and salad
Monday: Hummus Pizza
Tuesday: Crock Pot Black Beans and rice

We'll see if I actually follow this plan. The past two months have been so hectic, I would plan and then make changes along the way. That's normal but week by week, it was all so unpredictable that when planning, I gave up on trying anything new. I guess the good news is that there's still a "plan". If there wasn't, I'd definitely be rotating tacos and hot dogs....which isn't too far off from how we've been living since this school year started! 

For today, we are having a home day. We're still in recovery mode since last week and all of the birthday celebrations. Emmy is fighting a NASTY cough, the girls are still tearing into all of their new toys and I'm running into work for a few a simple marinara will have to do! 

Soooo....there is now paint on Emmy's face....I'm gonna's been fun Blogland! (Is this thing even still on?)
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Sunday, July 8, 2018

Cheesy Peach Pizza

Dear El + Em, 
For some reason, in which I do NOT understand....neither of you were digging this incredibly delicious pizza tonight. You both like when I make plain white pizza. You both love peaches. I'm confused, but then again you were both ganging up on Daddy and I today in an effort to drive us nuts. Congrats, you both succeeded in doing so. The rest of us gobbled this pizza up (of course)!!! I will be making this again, and something tells me that you both will have a change of heart as long as you aren't wearing your cranky pants!
Pizza Dough (I buy mine from the bakery section at Publix)
Extra Virgin Olive Oil - 1 tbsp.
Ricotta - 1 1/2 cups 
Parmesan Cheese - 3 tbsp (grated)
1 Clove of garlic - crushed
Fresh Mozzarella - Sliced 
1 Peach - Sliced
Salt and Pepper 
Fresh (or dried) Herbs - basil, thyme, oregano - whatever you have on hand
1 peach - sliced

1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.
2. Roll out the dough. I usually like to make my pizza pretty thin so there's more surface area for cheese!
3. Brush the dough with extra virgin olive oil.
4. In a bowl, combine ricotta, grated parmesan cheese, crushed garlic, salt and pepper to taste, and whatever herbs you have on hand (I save some herbs for garnish when the pizza is done. 
5. Generously put dollops of ricotta mixture on pizza dough.
6. Top with sliced fresh mozzarella and sliced peaches. 
7. Cook for 18-25 minutes. I use a pampered chef pizza stone, and in about 23 minutes my thin pizza crust was nice and crunchy!
8. Sprinkle with additional herbs for garnish and ENJOY!

***Side note - this would probably be amazing with a drizzle of reduced balsamic vinegar! I didn't have any for tonight...but next time! (Ooooooh maybe that's what the girls were missing!!!)
Seeeeee! Ella was VERY excited about these peaches a little more than 24 hours prior! She  literally begged to take them home!
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Monday, April 16, 2018

Rainbow Quinoa Salad

Give me all the quinoa! I love this one because you could make a giant batch and just eat it all week long. Coming from a girl that's not a huge fan of leftovers, that's saying a lot! Maybe it was the microwaved leftover spaghetti every Tuesday that scarred me for life? Sorry Mom! It was incredible the first time around I swear! This bowl of colorful goodness gets better by the day....and no need to heat it up, it's served cold. It's super easy to throw together too! 
Rainbow Quinoa Salad
3 cups of cooked quinoa (I found it best to cook the quinoa the night before and refrigerate it so it was nice and cold before adding the rest of the ingredients.)
As much of the following as you'd like....
Shelled edamame
Halved grape tomatoes
Diced red bell pepper (in retrospect, yellow would have made this more colorful!)
Diced cucumber (seeded)
Sliced red cabbage
Grated carrot
Sliced Almonds
Green onion - thinly sliced
*Toasted sesame seeds - for topping when serving.

1/4 cup of extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 tsp. of sesame seed oil
1 tbsp. of red wine vinegar 
1 tbsp. of rice vinegar
1 tsp. of tahini
1 tsp. of agave
Juice of 1/2 lemon
Salt and pepper to taste

1. Combine all of the ingredients for the quinoa salad in a large bowl and mix well. 
2. Whisk together the ingredients for the dressing and then pour over the quinoa salad.
3. Mix, mix, mix.
4. Serve cold, and top with toasted sesame seeds.

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Saturday, March 24, 2018

Black Bean Quinoa Burger Salad

OMG, a recipe! I'm a little rusty, let's ease into this. I'm tired of feeling guilty every time a new recipe of mine goes unposted! Yes, I've been cooking and not sharing. My bad. Super selfish, I know! Don't get me wrong....most of our weekly menus have consisted of taco nights, pizza nights...the usual. My creative touch has been thrown in there from time to time, but maybeeeee not as much as it used to. Turns out that trying to mom, wife and school counselor (all verbs in this case) at the same time is very time consuming. Time consuming. Energy draining. Rewarding (duh). Did I say anything that indicates I'm tired yet? Oh hey there, I'm tired. Yes, all of these things. 

I'm nowhere near being on my "A-Game" moment to moment has been a means of survival around here for a while now. Hubby and I are nailing it (in my opinion) but it's a mess. An all over the place, mess. Love it, but mamma is tired. Hubs is too....but I couldn't do it without my other half! He rocks...and this is the time of year that he is seriously carrying the team! Okay, you feel me. Turns out the struggle IS real, but we've got this. I'll be over here enjoying the journey, and sharing when possible! 
Soooooooo, here it is! You might be thinking...."where is the meat at, Steph?" Lately we've been doing A LOT of meatless meals for a lot of reasons:
1. It's easier to not have to deal with that part of the meal - it's just a whole thing and frankly my meatless meals take much less time to prepare. 
2. I was trying to do some more budget friendly meals, and while working lots of beans and grains into the rotation it just sort of happened. 
3. I love the idea of a plant based diet. I see us fading meat out more and more...maybe not completely...but it has been happening for a while now. 

There's a new restaurant that opened up in my town, and "YAY" is all I could say. So fresh, so yummy and SO up my alley. They have a salad that is my absolute fave, and inspired this fun little dinner right here. 

I literally have NO measurements so this is a total estimate but you can't mess this up, at least I don't think you can. 
(*Just because I changed the name of my blog, doesn't mean that I's still going to always be - Never The Same Spice Twice).

Black Bean Burgers
2 cans of Black Beans drained and rinsed (I used a can and about 2-ish cups of black beans that I made in the crock pot which I'd say probably equals about 2 cans)
1.5 cups of cooked quinoa
1 cup of whole wheat panko bread crumbs
1/2 tsp. cumin
1/2 tsp. chili powder
salt & pepper to taste

*Mix all of the ingredients together until the beans are slightly mushed up - but still about 40% whole  (how is that for precision?) - add more bread crumbs if you feel like you need it to stick together better. Make burger patties and then grill them in some olive oil on medium heat until slightly browned. 

Greens (I used romaine lettuce and baby kale that I had on hand but use whatevs)
Diced Avocado
Diced Tomato
Diced Cucumber
Red Onion
Sliced Red Bell Pepper

*Assemble in the typical way one would put together a salad. You've got this. 

Red Wine Vinegar
Extra Virgin Olive Oil (I usually do more olive oil than red wine vinegar)
Salt and Pepper to taste

*Whisk it all together and mix it in with the salad. 
**Throw that yummy "burger" on top and you're done! But wait.......

Sriracha Mayo
BONUS - not pictured, but it definitely happened when I went back inside to join the family after taking food photos. Mayo mixed with as much sriracha as you could handle! OMGGGG, drizzle it over the burger....crazy good!

Can you still call this a recipe? I'm going to say "yes" and still pat myself on the back for this one. It's good, it's easy and you can't really mess it up - I promise! Enjoy! 
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Saturday, December 9, 2017

DIY Minty Scrub

The other night, my mom mentioned that she wanted to have a "little something" to give out to her friends at the end of her neighborhood Christmas party. I was thinking of making a holiday themed body scrub and figured this would be the perfect opportunity. Mom's NOT one for crafts, but this is simple enough, and I had most of these ingredients already on hand. Thanks to Amazon Prime, just two days later I had the jars and some extra coconut oil.  On Thursday night, she came over and we made these lovely little scrubs while watching Christmas Vacation. (LOVE having mom live nearby...the novelty hasn't worn off!)

All you need is.....
-Cute 4 oz. glass jars. I LOVE and have ordered these a few times (I made 12)
-2 cups of granulated sugar
-1 cup of pink himalayan salt 
-Fractionated coconut oil - 1 1/2 cups (my fave)
-12 drops of lavender oil
-5 drops of peppermint oil
-Red food coloring (optional)

Mix all of the ingredients together. Add more sugar or coconut oil if the consistency isn't to your liking. Depending on how you tweak the recipe you should be able to fill about 10-12 jars. If you would like to add a little color, then you could add a few drops of food coloring. Usually I skip this step, but mom wanted it a little more red than pink. Now that the messy part is done...time to decorate. What do you have laying around the house? Labels, some stickers, and festive ribbon...these came out just too stinkin' cute! 

You could certainly adjust the scent to your liking too! I was afraid to make these too minty! I'm BIG into Young Living essential oils, and being that these are therapeutic grade, high quality oils...they are potent! In my opinion, adding the lavender helped tone down the mint so that it doesn't leave your skin feeling too tingly! Also, it smells FANTASTIC!

( If you're interested in Young Living oils, just drop me a line! )

*Disclaimer - This product was tested on husbands. 

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