Monthly Archives: November 2009

One dish meal ya say?!

One dish meal ya say?  Yes please! 🙂

Ahhh friends, Monday night…. so after basically hydroplaning home in Richmond’s 900th rain storm of the season @ at swift 35mph 😉 it ended up being wee bit later than I had planned by the time I got back!!

I knew that there was one thing that couldn’t be skipped however, and that was a meetup with my homegirl Jillian… she wouldn’t bail on me either so who am I to ditch her?  A sleek 20 some minutes of Level 2 shred later and I was feelin’ like a new woman!  Add 15 minutes of ab ripper punishment X into the mix and life was good 🙂

Nothing like a great workout to get into the groove of things, right?!

After all that it was getting late and I knew I only had about 30 minutes between now and our shows coming on tv to get dinner set up and ready…

…. there enters the one dish 30 minute recipe!

Italian Sausage & White Beans inspired by Cooking Light 🙂

Of course, I used some different items than what was called for (broken record…?)

  • Johnsonville smoked turkey sausages, sliced
  • 1 green pepper, chopped
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 can Italian tomatoes
  • 1 can northern beans, drained & rinsed
  • 1 tblsp EVOO
  • dried basil
  • dried oregano
  • salt/pepper
  • stragglers included red wine + Frank’s hot sauce

Saute the onion, green pepper and garlic about 1 tblsp EVOO over medium heat for about 5 minutes until cooked through a bit, salt & pepper too friends!

Then add in the turkey sausages and saute until they brown up nicely and start to fill the house with the most delicious smell (unknown side effect 😉 ??) !!

At this point add the beans, basil and oregano

Then the tomatoes

Guess what else found its way into the dish tonight???  Mwuhahaha sneaky sneaky!

I also added a splash of Frank’s hot sauce …. Italian meets Mexican?  Ole!

All served up

So how was it?  Deelish! 

If you need proof friends:  The Man saw me making this combo and asked directly “ugh so what exactly are we having for dinner, I don’t really like beans like that and probably will just have to pick them out”….. did he pick them out friends?  I’m lookin’ a clean bowl right now, so I’m goin’ to take that as a total win whoop whoop 😛

This meal was really tasty, filling and so fast and easy for a weeknight that I couldn’t have been happier!

Alrighty, gotta jet!  TV time + my man Chuck Bass is waitin’ for me 😉  Have a lovely night friends!


Hello friends!  Back from vacation are we?  Yea yea yea…. tell me something I don’t know 😉

This morning started with me playing the meanest mental trick ever on myself haha… so my phone alarm goes off at 7:10am and I roll over thinking to myself “who set their alarm so early on my day off grrrr!?!?!” until I quickly realized that this was no day off… yea, take that Steph.  The PITS.

Anywho, work has been super productive this morning so that is actually feelin’ real nice I must say.  I have some projects to work on before returning to training next week and I think they will keep me occupied to say the least for the remainder of the week!

Lunch eats consisted of imposter pics leftovers… is someone still savoring vacation here or what? 😛

Coconut Pumpkin Soup

Tarragon Dijon Potatoes w/ Oikos

Oh. Yeaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa.

On tonight’s agenda

  • workout central!  cardio + ab ripper X is in order
  • dinner! look for a new easy peasy creation featuring cannellini beans
  • quality tv!  i.e. gossip girl, ya know 😉

Alright friends, back to the grind (or to the salt mine as my Dad always says??) haha… have a great one! 🙂

Coconut Pumpkin Soup!

Ahhh Sundays… you tease me so!  I get to enjoy all the joy you have to offer, yet always remember that I must go back to work for a full week *gasp!* tomorrow 😛

You win some you lose some as they say, right friends?

Well today was a definite win in my book!  We spent the day working around the house and the weather was amazing here, almost 70 degrees?!  The Christmas tree is lookin’ mighty fine too, however not yet ready for the “big reveal”… soon friends, soon 😉

Onto tonight’s dinner, featuring:

Coconut Pumpkin Soup!

This is a recipe that I got from one of my mom’s magazines however ya’ll know my style and I made some changes before even starting + as I went along (per usual 😉 )

Starting players:

  • 2 carrots, peeled & chopped
  • 1 green pepper, chopped
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 tblsp olive oil
  • 1 15 oz. can pumpkin
  • 1 14 oz. can light coconut milk
  • 1 14 oz. can vegetable broth
  • 2 tblsp brown sugar
  • 1 fresh jalapeno, seeded and finely chopped
  • salt & pepper
  • 1 tsp fresh ginger, minced
  • parsley to garnish

First I finely chopped the onion, green pepper and carrot.

Then I sauteed these guys in olive oil over medium heat for a few minutes until tender.  I ended up adding 1 clove minced garlic towards the end (yea yea yea 😉 )

Meanwhile I combined the pumpkin, coconut milk, broth, brown sugar, jalapeno, ginger, salt & pepper in a large bowl.

Then added this to a saucepan along with the cooked veggie mixture, bringing to a boil.

Upon tasting I just really thought it needed a lil’ “kick if you will — so there I went adding in things that weren’t called for, story of my life (always outta line right 😛 )

About 1/4 tsp of curry powder and a few shakes of crushed red pepper flakes later, this bad johnny was kicked up to a whole ‘notha level!  I then let it simmer away for about 40 minutes uncovered….

… and voila!  Oh friends, I wish you could see how thick & delicious this soup was, and the flavor was so fabulous *le sigh* 🙂  Winner winner soup-time dinner?!

And to make it even better, the whole pot only had about 650 calories total… split that into 4 generous servings (approx. 165 per serving) and you are working with some pretty impressive stats in exchange for such a flavor punch! (KO?!)

We also had some peppercorn pork tenderloin to finish up (best $5.99 spent evah haha) with my new fave TJ’s find!

Oh yeaaaaaaaaaaa 😛

Eaten on our newly festive table of course!

And now I am stuffed and t-i-r-e-dddddd!!!  Time to cozy up in front of the fireplace & Xmas tree for some serious tv time…. it’s been a busy day and gotta rest up for a full week ahead!  I’m kind of ready to get back into the normal swing of things (i.e. regular workouts!) for a bit… call me crazy?! 

Hope you friends have a lovely Sunday evening and see you tomorrow (put your Monday happy hats on?) 🙂

Breakfast of Champions!

Hey hey friends, happy Sunday to you all! 

Is anyone else feelin’ the end of this extended holiday weekend coming near….? Ah well, we still have another day & we are going to make the most of it with some delicious eats, football watchin & Christmas tree decoratin’! 🙂

This morning we started our day with the breakfast of champions!

Savory Oats for her

(oats, cream cheese, egg whites, mozz cheese + frank’s hot sauce wooo woooo!)

Stuffed French Toast for him

(bananas, cream cheese, hazelnut syrup)

I am dying to share this recipe for stuffed french toast that we have been making in our house for about a year now, it was one of the first things I ever cooked for The Man and I think it sealed the deal!  😉

I made this extra decadent this morning however, yum!

  • 2 slices whole wheat bread
  • 1 egg (or use 2 egg whites)
  • splash half n’ half (or use milk)
  • sprinkle cinnamon
  • cream cheese
  • banana, sliced
  • butter or cooking spray
  • maple syrup
  • hazelnuts, chopped & toasted (optional)

Ya’ll this is so easy and really is a “knock their socks off” kinda breakfast 😛

1. Toast hazelnuts in hot pan for about 5 minutes to bring out their flavor.

2. Add to some maple syrup and throw in the microwave for a minute to warm through, let sit while you make the toast to give the syrup a lovely hazelnutty flava!

3.  Create an egg bath for the toast by stirring together the egg, half n’ half (or milk) and cinnamon.

4.  Send the bread for a swim & then throw into a hot pan coated with butter or cooking spray (I used to good stuff for this treat!), cooking until toasty brown on both sides.


5.  Remove from pan & start the “stuffin’!” — first layer some cream cheese (don’t try to spread it, that’ll just be a mess, trust me 😉 ) and then some sliced banana.


6.  Stack the other toast piece on top and put it back into the hot pan long enough to warm the cream cheese through so it all gets ooey gooey happy together 🙂

7.  Remove from pan, slice in half and serve with your easy hazelnut syrup on top!  Prepare to have some happy eaters too 🙂

So after breakfast I went on some Christmas decoration shopping adventures and got some great stuff…. including the rest of the stuff to finish the tree up (we ran out of beads and lights haha ooooops!)

I returned home to Lucy Dog going insane barking and The Man with these guys outside… apparently some dogs got loose in the ‘hood and chose our yard as their destination spot hahaha.  Luckily they had a tag with a phone number and after a few phone calls we returned them home safely… they were WILDDDDDD though woah!


After all this adventure it was time to whip up a quick leftover lunch using one of my new TJ’s finds!  (Noticing that all I’ve done is eat this morning, and I’ve only been up since 9am haha?! ah well)

Served with peppercorn pork tenderloin + tarragon dijon potatoes and some green beans w/ soy sauce 🙂


This chutney was AMAZING.  The hint of cinnamon throughout really did the trick for me, back to TJ’s I go to stock up for the holidays… I can see this being used for some holiday meals!

K friends, gotta run!

The Man is currently doing tons of yard work (ummmm it’s 68 degrees out bc that’s normal after a freezing cold day yesterday wtf Richmond?) and I have lots of XMas decoratin’ to do!

Stay tuned tonight for some Pumpkin Coconut Soup on the menu tonight 🙂

Have a great day friends!

Let the Christmas decorating begin!

Hey hey late night friends!?  Sorry for the late post however The Man and I have been busy bees all night gettin’ a start on this

That’s right friends, it’s our very first Christmas tree together and that makes me 🙂  We have a ways to go, however we got a great start tonight!

I also got in a great workout using The Man’s P90X Kenpo DVD… oh yea, kickboxing inspired moves, this sesh was crucial!

But let’s back-track it up to dinner 😛 shall we?

I must have been inspired by today’s Cooking with Herbs class and the tarragon infused vinegar we learned how to make…

… bc tonight I decided to leverage off a recipe from my girl over @SimplySavor for a side dish to go with our pork tenderolin using none other than lady tarragon herself! 😉

Tarragon Dijon Potatoes!

Here were the key players for this lower fat potato dish

  • 2 russet potatoes
  • Oikos greek yogurt, plain, 1 container
  • Dijon mustard, 2 tsp (used the Cinnamon, Apple & Ginger Napa Valley)
  • Dried Tarragon, 1 tsp
  • Salt/Pepper
  • EVOO, 1 tblsp
  • 1 clove garlic (unpictured)

First I washed, peeled and sliced up the potatoes into about 1/3″ slices.

Then I added 1 tblsp EVOO to a hot pan (medium) and added the potatoes in a layer… don’t touch ’em for a few, you want to hear the snap crackle pop, that’s what is going to give the outsides that “crunch”!  

After a few minutes I gave them a flip and also added 1 clove chopped garlic.

At this point I added some water to the pan and covered it so they could steam away and cook through.

In the meantime I whipped up the sauce using the Oikos, dijon mustard, tarragon, salt & pepper.

Once the potatoes were ready, I added in the creamy dijon sauce and let it warm through.  Voila!

Friends, I know it isn’t pretty — but trust me, the flavor was fantastic!  Next time I’m adding some wine or milk in the mix, would have benefitted from some more liquid ‘me thinks’ 😉

We also had a peppercorn pork tenderloin to go with, one of those pre-marinated guys (hey friends, it was a good deal and easy peasy, I’ve never tried one either so I was curious)

Ummm hello yum, nice to meet you.  I will never judge again….

Served buffet style (we love to do that in this house) along with some leftover cranberry apple relish and veggies of course 😛

All nice n’ purty on my plate

Yummy in my tummy (did I just say that for real?)

Anywho, I hope everyone has/had a great Saturday night!… I am tiredddddddd to say the least so time to cozy up in bed.  See ya’ll tomorrow for a fun soup cooking adventure (hint:  pumpkin and coconut are involved!)

Til then, later friends! 🙂

Lavendar Fields Farm!

Well hello again friends!!!  It’s been a while eh? 😉

Hope everyone is enjoying this nice, long extended weekend (it’s only Saturday whoop whoop?!) 

I feel like I have totally left you guys hanging since Turkey Day, but I needed a lil’ technology break & decided that time with my family & boyfriend was in order… I know ya’ll understand! 

Gotta share with ya’ll the highlights of yesterday’s eats though… 😛

Shredded turkey BBQ – in a barbecue, red wine & balsamic vinegar sauce blend that was a superfab way to reuse the turkey day feast!

Also some homemade peanut butter cookies featuring this guy & agave nectar (we ate them before the camera found them 😉 I’ll make ’em again soon, promise!)

Peanut Butter with Sumatra Cinnamon and Raisin

So onto today, which has started off fantastically as well 🙂  It’s sunny & chilly out which made for a perfect morning to spend at Lavendar Fields Farm, a local farm that also offers different cooking classes and the such.  They have fantastic herbs, 250 types of USDA certified organic to be specific…. and the farm is only about 15 minutes down the street (so weird that I live 15 minutes from both a city and a farm right?)

This morning I met Mom & Sis there for a Cooking with Herbs Class!

It’s such a cute place friends, the family has been on the farm for 6 generations and some of them are Australian so their accents are to die for!  They literally open their house up to everyone and have a huge indoor/outdoor garden, shop, etc.  It’s absolutely lovely 🙂

So onto the class, where I learned SO MUCH about herbs that I never knew. 

They really are such a fabulous way to add fantastic flavor to your cooking with no fat and with added health benefits… did you know that parsley is one of the healthiest herbs you can eat fresh — 1 cup offers more beta carotene than a carrot, more calcium than a glass of milk, more iron then 3oz. liver (ew), Vitamins C & K?  WOW!

We also learned how to do a tarragon infused vinegar (easy peasy friends) and the smell of this was FABULOUS.  I want to make this very soon (it would make a lovely gift too!) and use in on salads, veggies, etc….

Hello sista!

We sampled some absolutely yummy deelish Lemon Balm MiniMuffins topped with cream cheese & (get this) lemon flavored sugar!

Lil’ sis got the recipe and has announced that she will be making these for the holidays (she’s the baker of the family!)….  I will of course ensure this happens by not allowing her to come home from college if she doesn’t 😉 haha

There were also some fresh herb butters and cream cheeses to be sampled… what an easy fun way to fancy up the norm right?!

It was a fantastic way to spend the morning, and I know that I will be heading back there very soon! 🙂

Afterwards I did a little shopping for Christmas Tree goodies (p.s. If you are in Richmond, Ben Franklin is having some fantastic sales!)… I’ve never had my own tree before and The Man & I are so excited that we get to share one this year in our very own home!  ❤ We have a certain theme we are going for, which will of course be revealed once we get it all together 😛

Lunch eats needed to be easy, light & healthy… nothing Ukrops couldn’t handle!  Veggie Bean soup + Salad topped with everything under the sun.

Ahhh felt good after all that turkey day food to get back to some normalcy!

This afternoon’s plans include the week’s meal planning, WORKOUT (I’ve been a bad fanatic :() and picking up any needed dinner supplies…

…. once The Man gets off work we are spending tonight Christmas Tree decoratin’ and having a cozy dinner by the fire which is scheduled to include Pork Tenderloin (no more turkey please haha).

See you friends tonight and have a most wonderful Saturday 🙂

Hello & goodbye?!


Sorry to leave you guys hanging, but it’s been a serious shopping & relaxing day around here with some great leftover eats included… however my camera is currently on it’s Turkey Day vacation but we’ll be back tomorrow!

  • Turkey, Cranberry Apple Chutney & Cream Cheese Sammies
  • Shredded Turkey with red wine barbecue sauce

Check back in tomorrow friends… because I am headed to a special Cooking with Herbs Event and you know there will be recaps!!

Hope to see my girl @EatingBirdFood there too 🙂

Have a wonderful Friday night friends (ummm best Friday night ever right?!?!?!)