Watermelon Margaritas – Happy National Tequila Day!

image

Happy National Tequila Day!

Here’s an amazing recipe for Watermelon Margaritas. This will make a small pitcher, about 4 drinks. It’s a great summer  time drink.

3/4 cup Tequila (I used Patron)

3 cups chopped watermelon

1/4 cup of lime juice

2 tablespoons agave nectar

Optional: I also added a splash of limecello to give a little extra hit of lime. (Recipe on blog)

imageimage

Its easy if you toss all this in the blender and mix it. Because I like mine on the rocks and my husband likes his like an adult slushie, I mix his in my Margaritaville machine with ice. Enjoy!

White Wine Sangria Recipe

image

I just wipped up some yummy white wine sangria that I wanted to share with you. I love these 1 quart Ball Mason jars from Hobby Lobby. They cost about $4 and they’re great for this recipe.

Make sure to make this 24 hours in advance so the fruit has time to mix in the wine. You can change the fruit out  to suit your tastes. You can’t really mess this up.

2 bottles semi-sweet or dry white wine

5 cherries chopped in half

1 peach chopped

12 strawberries

1/2 cup orangecello (lemoncello recipe in separate post)

image

Refrigerate overnight. Add 1/4 cup sprite, ginger ale or club soda to each glass. It should be about 1 part sprite to 3 parts sangria. I wouldn’t suggest adding it to the full mixture since it will go flat. Enjoy!

Limoncello Recipe – Old School Italian

A couple of years ago, my husband and I wanted to make Limoncello. He is Italian and it’s quite a traditional drink. Me being not Italian enjoyed it as a martini mixer. Ladies, think Lemon Drop Martinis….yum! I looked online and found a lot of “quick recipes” for it that called for 5 days or less. And after lots of research on old school Italian methods we found the traditional method produced high quality Limoncello. We certainly have taste tasted it with friends who are not Italian and every one loves it!

imageThis batch called for 1.5L of Everclear and about 8-10 lemons, depending on size. Organic lemons are best because they don’t have that waxy pesticide yuck on the outside and since you’re only using the peel, you want the very best. I use a micrograter which I believe I got at Target. You only want to remove the yellow portion, NO WHITE. The more white you put in the more tart and bitter it becomes. Some recipes take a standard peeler and peel the rind off…no. You want smooth and delish and not bitter.

imageNow you’re going to take that micro grater and zest your little heart out.

imageIt should cure in a glass container. I use this one from Wal-Mart for about $6 and I usually tape the lid to give it a good seal. But you can use large Ball Mason Jars, which I’m now using. Now you let it sit for 45 days! Yes, 45 days! A lot of people don’t wait….I know your Momma told you that good things come to those who wait! So wait. It will be worth it.

In 45 days you’re going to strain it.

imageAnd you’re going to make a simple syrup. For 1.5L of Everclear I make 5 cups of water with 4 cups of sugar. You cook until the sugar is clear in the water.

imageAnd then I generally add it until I’m not feeling like I’m shooting out fire from my lungs. You want smooth. On this batch I added it all!

imageTaste testing is the fun part. You then bottle it and store it in the freezer for another 45 days, yes, another 45 days. I buy bottles from Ikea and Hobby Lobby and I’ve also found cute ones from Home Goods that are made in Italy. 1.5L makes 2.5 large bottles that can be mixed in martinis, lemonade, or straight.

imageThis is a great mixer. Some of my friends enjoy it just straight. I like it in martinis but I’ve also found it good in sangria. We are working on a batch of lime right now to try with margaritas. We have friends who literally request us making this. It’s fun making something that people enjoy and rave about. Old School Limoncello, love it!

Summer time means Sangria Time!

One of my summer pleasures is making a great sangria to sit outside on my deck after a long day in the sun, and just have a fire and drink with friends. I’ve made sangria for years and the recipe has changed but this really is the best of them all. Sangria typically calls for Grand Marnier but now I use a really great sweet Jamaican rum. So here’s my fool proof recipe:

3 bottles good red wine

750 ml sweet rum

Simple syrup (3 cups water and 1/2 cup sugar mixed well)

1 quart strawberries

2 peaches

2 cups cherries

2 limes

1 orange

My biggest piece of advice: be patient! Let it sit for a full 24 hours so everything can marinate. Then right before you serve it, pour 1 liter ginger ale and mix well. Serve and enjoy! Try it out. I know you’ll love it!

image

How to Make Beignets

imageNew Orleans is one of my favorite places to visit. As a kid, my family and I traveled from Texas to New Orleans about 2-3 times a year. My favorite place was always Cafe Du Monde for hot beignets and coffee. Beignets are a french donut, powdered with sugar and served hot. They taste a little like traditional fried dough but better.

I love to make them on the weekends and my kids love eating them. They’re pretty easy to make, especially if you use the box mix that is sold by Cafe du Monde. So here is how to get the yummy taste of New Orleans without having to actually travel there.

imageThis box mixed is sold in most grocery stores. I’ve been able to find it in New York. It is generally sold in the ethnic food section where they have boxed and canned cajun foods. There are other beignet boxed mixes that you can use but this is the best.

It is 7oz of water to every 2 cups of mix. I throw it in my mixer with the dough hook just until lightly sticky. Then I sprinkle the counter with flour and start rolling it out. Sprinkling a little flour on your flattened dough before rolling helps the roller not stick.

imageYou score it with a knife into squares and rectangles.

imageIt does not have to look perfect. Beignets are all perfectly imperfect.

imageHeat your oil until you see it churning in the pot, usually on med-high for 10 minutes before the first batch. Drop them in. They will sink and then rise within 6-10 seconds to the top. Baste them with oil until they bubble up and flip them over. Each batch should only take a couple of minutes until golden color.

imageRemove from oil onto a tray lined with paper towels to soak up any oil and then immediately sprinkle with powdered sugar. You can see a pink polka dot dresses little girl loaming in the background of this photo patiently waiting to eat some! lol

imageServe hot and enjoy!

image

Review of 310 Nutrition Shakes – Part 1

UPDATE: There is a Part 2 for 310!

This will be a multiple blog post of my journey of using 310 Nutrition Shakes in order to shed a little weight from the holidays. I’ve also included a discount code to try 310!

imageI love a good protein shake as a breakfast or lunch supplement. I have never really done two meal replacements using them. I usually buy EAS from Target in chocolate and I always thought it tasted pretty good. There’s been a lot of social media buzzing over 310 Shake recently – I’ve heard it was amazing at helping shed weight and an incredible nutritional makeup. So it’s good for you too!

So I compared the ingredients of 310 Shake against my old shake mix (EAS) and I was pretty surprised. 310 had half the carbs, no saturated fat, less than 1g of sugar, triple the amount of vitamins (sometimes five times the amount), even 30% of your daily biotin! Hello, beautiful hair! 🙂 It also had a whole list of amino acids that mine didn’t have any of. All of these things I took into consideration since I was going to be paying triple what I normally pay. But I have to say that the makeup of 310 blows away my old shake mix that I “thought” was really good for me. And now it makes me kind of go, “What in the hell was I drinking?!” It kind of looks horrible when you put them side-by-side.

imageI started one week ago and I’m still unable to fully commit to two shakes a day, every day, because let’s be honest, I’m starving! When I’ve done two shakes a day, I get pretty hungry by 2pm. And dinner isn’t until 5:30 so then I want to start snacking. I expected to be fuller for longer because I usually am with my old one. And I’ve also added the 310 Thin which is an additional supplement. It’s supposed to act as an appetite suppressant, taking one capsule twice a day. Well, if it is working than I can’t imagine what my hunger would be like without it. But I will say that when my body is burning fat and calories, I usually am ready to eat house and home. On days where I’m dieting but not really hungry anyway, I know my body isn’t burning too much. So I’m gonna work through the hunger and eventually make it consistently to two shakes a day, every day and not just sometimes. I mean my poor body went from holiday cookies and carb overload to just shakes for most of the day, so it is a big shift. Lol

So my favorite recipe is this:

1 cup almond milk

1/2 cup water

1 tablet of 310 Thin opened and put in the shake

1 scoop chocolate powder

half a frozen banana

(You can also add a little cinnamon to this recipe too!)

imageimageimage

And blend away! The taste is really good. I don’t feel like I’m forcing myself to drink it in any way. In fact, it’s usually gone in the first 60 seconds. It only takes a couple minutes to make. I really like the frozen fruit in mine but if you don’t have any or don’t have time to use a blender you can use the 310 Shaker cup so you can run out the door. I personally need the ice component so if I don’t have fruit then I would just use a handful of ice. And I pour it into one of my Starbucks Venti cold cup tumblers which is the perfect size for it.

imageA second recipe that I have tried is:

1 cup almond milk

1/2 cup water

1 tablet of 310 Thin opened and put in the shake

1 scoop vanilla powder

1 cup frozen strawberries

There are a lot of more elaborate recipes on the 310 site but I don’t want to get into some of them because I don’t want to add added sugars like honey. But there’s one with frozen cherries that sounds good. So look for my next 310 entry for different recipes that I’ve tried. Now, here is a discount code for you to try 310 Nutrition. You save $10 off any product order for the month of January. Chocolate is my favorite powder 🙂

image

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip and M&M Cookies

image

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip and M&M Cookies

1 cup pumpkin puree

1 cup dark brown sugar

1 stick margarine

2 tbl white sugar

1 egg

1 tsp cinnamon

1 tsp baking powder

1 tsp baking soda

1 tsp salt

Half a bag of chocolate chips

Pumpkin spice M&Ms

These cookies kind of came together on their own. I had some leftover pumpkin purée and had bought some pumpkin spice M&Ms that I was trying to figure out what to use with.  These cookies came out delish!

Preheat to 350 degrees. Let margarine come to room temperature.  Add sugars, salt, cinnamon, baking powder and baking soda and blend until creamy. Add egg and mix. Add pumpkin and mix. Add chocolate chips and mix. Spoon out  onto cookie sheet. Add M&Ms. Bake for 12.5 minutes. Makes 30 cookies. Enjoy!