Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Mozzarella Basil "Caprese" Biscuit Breadsticks with Tomato Dipping Sauce

The summer caprese salad transformed for fall weather: enter: biscuits!
Also, it is still 95 degrees here, but we can pretend it is fall ;)

These biscuits are the perfect transition from summer to fall. They are cheesy, with a freshness from the basil. And cut into breadsticks, served with a tomato dipping sauce (any tomato sauce will do - jarred or homemade!), they are a great nod to the flavors of a caprese salad.
Any time you can turn a salad into carbs, count me in! HA!

For the full recipe, click here:
Herb Drop Biscuits

Sunday, August 23, 2015

OC Fair with Seester - An Annual Tradition and Fried Food Bonanza

Oh, geez, I meant to post this two weeks ago! Sorry! But the LA County Fair comes to town next month, so I hope you can make your way up there for some of these same amazing treats!

Oh, man, I love the fair! My sister and I go to the Orange County Fair every year to ride the Tilt-a-Whirl, play the ping pong ball and quarters tossing games (by the way are the darts gone?! Someone poke an eye out?! We now throw hacky sacks at the balloons...hmph), and eat our weight in novelty fried food items. Hoorah!!!

Australian Battered Potatoes with Cheese and Ranch - our must-have 1st stop every year!

Hello Chicken Charlie! :)  There are usually three different booths with different fried items.  Goal: find them ALL! I'm seriously so obsessed with trying whatever new food item they have fried each year!

Deep Fried Birthday Cake! Win!

Kool-ickle...A cherry Kool-Aid popsicle with a pickle inside.  I passed on this one, haha.  Also: Chicken Tenders with crushed Frosted Flakes cereal as the coating. I bet that one was actually good!
Not unlike the strange but probably good Krispy Kreme burger.

You guys.  Cheesy Bacon Bombs.  These are a must try!!  Basically a cheese stuffed biscuit with garlic and bacon.  Yup.  Ain't nothing wrong with that!

Oreo Churro! I really wanted to get this.  Too.Full.  Such a let down, haha. I bet it's good!

Then...of course we have to see the...baby goats!! Eeeeee!!!!

Another successful year with Seester at the OC Fair!! Such a fun tradition!

Thursday, August 6, 2015

Burrata & Honey Grilled Peaches over Whole Wheat Gnocchi

Oh, burrata. Nothing says summahtime like burrata cheese and grilled fruit!
And you guys, I finally found whole wheat gnocchi! I've been obses sed ever since I saw this post by Seasonally Jane. She found hers at Whole Foods, I actually didn't see it at mine, but found some in the regular dried pasta section of Ralph's. Makes something indulgent feel healthy.

So, get your packaged gnocchi in some boiling water, and let's get to the peaches.
Now, if you have an outdoor grill, by all means, please brush the peach halves with butter, and grill, flesh side down, for a few minutes until tender.
If you are using an indoor grill pan...well, do the same thing!
Alternatively, you can slice the peaches, and saute them over medium-high heat on the stove in a pan with a bit of butter. All options will yield the same yummy results. When the peaches are warm and softened just a bit, drizzle with honey.

Drain the gnocchi, toss in a bit of olive oil or butter, and plate.
Top with the sliced peaches.
I had some olive tapenade that I tossed with the pasta, but you can slice some green and kalamata olives, or omit. It adds a good flavor.

Ready for the cheese?? OK, so burrata is cream-filled, fresh mozzarella cheese. I know, cream-filled sounds like a Twinkie or something, haha, but it is true.
You want to drain the burrata ball from its packaging, and gently pat dry.
Don't cut it apart until it is plated, as it will fall apart. The inside isn't liquid, it is almost like a soft ricotta cheese. Creamy, pairs great with honey and peaches, and creates a light sauce for the pasta.

Garnish with freshly torn mint leaves, salt and pepper to taste, and a drizzle of olive oil, if desired.

Light, indulgent, summery dinner.

Sunday, July 19, 2015

Healthy Blueberry, Banana & Zucchini Muffins

Good morning!

I usually make pancakes on the weekends, but today it is muffins! These muffins have 3 types of healthy produce, honey and maple syrup instead of sugar, white whole wheat flour, and greek yogurt. Healthy and delish! The perfect way to start a weekend morning.


Adapted from: Cooking a la Mel

2 ripe bananas – well mashed
2 eggs
2 tsp vanilla
1/2 cup greek yogurt
¼ cup honey
¼ cup maple syrup
zest of ½ a lemon
1 1/2 cups white whole wheat flour
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1 tsp cinnamon
1 1/2 cups zucchini, grated

1 1/2 cups fresh blueberries


In a large bowl, beat together the mashed bananas, eggs, vanilla, and yogurt. Add in the honey, maple syrup and lemon zest.
In a separate bowl, mix together the flour, salt, baking powder, baking soda, and cinnamon until well blended.  
Slowly add the dry ingredients to the wet.
Fold in the zucchini and blueberries.

OK, time out. 3 things.
First, Do as I say, not as I do, because I thought I'd try putting the blueberries at the bottom of each muffin cup instead of blending them into the batter.  Terrible idea. it turned out more like a cobbler, not a muffin.  Add them to the batter :)
Second, I have to confess, only half the time do I really mix the dry ingredients separately, and then add them gradually. The rest of the time I totally add them all straight into the wet ingredients, mix the salt, cinnamon etc. into the flour best I can, and then gradually fold it all together. Lazy. Basically turns out the same. 
Third, I used my Vitamix to blend everything, instead of a hand egg beater. Both work great.

Anyway, once you have your batter incorporated, pour into greased muffin tins and bake at 350 degrees for 25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.

Perfect for breakfast, but also as a snack or dessert!
Happy Weekend :)

Monday, July 6, 2015

Yogurtland New Flavors in Stores Today! #‎YogurtlandSweetTreats‬

I was invited to preview these new items, and was compensated with a goodie bag, gift card, and all I could eat frozen yogurt ;)

Yogurtland invited me to attend a preview at their Corporate location in Irvine of their new Candy Crush game inspired frozen yogurt flavors that debut in stores today!

I'm probably the only person who doesn't play the Candy Crush game on my phone, so I wasn't sure what the inspired flavors would be like!

It was such a fun event! They had lots of samples for us to try, including toppings, plus a photo booth, prize wheel, and a tour of their flavor mixing lab!

Two of my fave flavors are the first to debut! Look for them beginning today, July 6th - July 19th in your local store!

Not only does the Maple Donut flavor taste just like a real doughnut, but they offer mini glazed cake doughnuts on their toppings bar to compliment the flavor! Now you can have your frozen yogurt, and eat your cake (donut), too! ;)  So delicious!!! You have to try it!

The Orange Fizz Sorbet, along with the Lemonade Lake coming out in August, were so summery and refreshing! And they have cute Swedish fish to top this flavor!

Throughout the summer, they will release the other flavors:
Blue Raspberry Sorbet - July 20
Chocotastic Sorbet - July 20

Salted Caramel Gelato (so yummy!!) - August 3
Candy Clouds - August 3

Lemonade Lake - August 17
Cupcake Carnival - August 17

Butterscotch - August 31
Minty Meadow - August 31

The fun thing about the Candy Clouds cotton candy flavor, was they totally made it taste like real cotton candy, and not that fake blue "cotton candy" flavor we are used to.

That is the cool and unique thing about Yogurtland is that they buy the real food item when creating new flavors, so that they can get the flavor just right.  They use real food flavors to re-create a more authentic tasting product! I love this.  They also test their probiotic levels several times during the yogurt making process, to make sure those stay intact.
So, basically. A heath food ;)  That's what I tell myself as I'm eating that sugary donut, ha!!

I had so much fun in the Photo Booth with my good friend Mary, from the blog Let's Play OC.  She has all the insider details on so many fun things going on in Orange County!
Check her out on Instagram here, and here, too!

 Spinning the prize wheel! :)

It was such a treat (pun intended!) to tour the corporate office lobby! They had a whole wall of all their flavors, past and present. I found my long lost all time fave, Carrot Cake! ...Bring it back!! ;)

Be sure to follow Yogurtland on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter for even more details on today's kickoff of these Candy Crush flavors!!

Follow the hashtag this summer to see everyone's creations, and be sure to tag Yogurtland when you go in to try these yummy new summer flavors!
#YogurtlandSweetTreats   #YogurtlandCandyCrush