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Tuesday, July 1, 2014

FOOD-Black Bean Avocado Brownies

avocado brownies
http://cajuncouponer.com/2013/08/17/avocado-and-black-bean-brownies-recipe-and-giveaway/

I was very curious about these brownies and was excited to try them. I kind of thought that they were going to be one of those unexplained phenomenons where they tasted just like regular brownies and everyone would be shocked to learn of their ingredients. 

Well...no such luck. I took the first bite (with big expectations) and was horribly disappointed. They tasted like chocolate flavored bean bars. I think eating them right out of the oven was the problem. As they cooled and I tried more, they started to grow on me! 

My daughter liked them and thought they were normal brownies, but my son wasn't fooled and wouldn't touch it (ever since, he's refused any brownie!).  

I kind of enjoyed them after they had chilled in the fridge for a bit and they tasted kind of good! I don't think I'll probably make this recipe (linked above) again, but I'm glad I tried it, and we ate the entire pan!





I substituted truvia sweetener for the sugar and brown sugar to make it THM friendly, so that may have affected the outcome also.

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Food Trick-Baked "Hard Boiled" Eggs

http://foodisablessing.blogspot.com/2012/05/tip-tuesday-5-bake-your-hard-boiled.html?m=1

I wanted to try baking my eggs this year to color for Easter. It worked surprisingly well. They did get the weird brown spots on them (not sure if the eggs were dirty or my oven somehow got some gunk on them?), but I put them in cold water after taking them out of the oven and most of the spots rinsed off.





My kids had a great time decorating them and eating them over the next few days!



I will probably try this method again, though I did notice that they were a little harder to peel (also mentioned in this blog). I helped the kids so I was able to keep most of the egg in tact.

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

FOOD- Sweet and Salty Chicken

http://foodforahungrysoul.blogspot.com/2009/10/simply-great-chicken.html

I needed a quick and easy recipe for chicken for supper and I saw this while browsing through my Pinterest Food board. It tasted great! My husband wasn't a big fan, but the kids and I really enjoyed it!


Sweet and Salty Chicken

About 3 1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken
1 ( .7 ounce) packet of dried Italian dressing mix
1/2 cup brown sugar, packed

Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
Grease a 12 inch x 9 inch pan and set aside (can line dish with aluminum foil if preferred as the sugar tends to caramelize while baking).

Dip and press the chicken pieces into the mixture, coating front and back and place into your prepared pan, topside of the chicken facing up. Any extra coating that remains can be sprinkled over the chicken.

Cook for 50-60 minutes (I did about 45 minutes because my chicken pieces were a little smaller).







Friday, April 25, 2014

THM- 2 Minute Chocolate Muffin in a Mug - S

Muffin in a Mug
http://training6hearts4him.blogspot.com/2013/04/lowcarb-muffin-in-mug-mim.html

I have really been enjoying my first month making the changes in the Trim Healthy Mama plan. I was pleasantly surprised when I tried this chocolate muffin in a mug. 

It took less than 2 minutes to throw all the ingredients in the mug and mix them up, and put it in the microwave for a minute (I did a few seconds more to make sure).  I was shocked that it actually worked and tasted good! I am excited to make it with different toppings and experiment with it more. 




Monday, April 21, 2014

FOOD-Guest Post-Venetian Macaroni and Cheese

Macaroni and Cheese
http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/giada-de-laurentiis/macaroni-and-cheese-recipe.html?oc=linkback

My eating habits have changed over the past few weeks since I've started following a Trim Healthy Mama lifestyle (watch for interesting recipes as I experiment with them). But luckily I have some people who are willing to submit their delicious, creamy, comfort foods and will let us know how they turned out. 

Jen shared this great recipe that she tried and it looks wonderful! 


Venetian Mac-n-Cheese by Giada De Laurentiis
Ingredients

Butter, for greasing dish
12 ounces wide egg noodles
2 cups heavy cream
2 1/2 cups whole milk
2 teaspoons all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt, plus more for pasta water
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 cups (packed) grated Fontina
3/4 cup (packed) finely grated Parmesan
3/4 cup (packed) grated mozzarella
4 ounces cooked ham, diced, optional
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh Italian parsley leaves

Directions

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F.

Butter a 13 by 9-inch glass baking dish and set aside. Cook the noodles in a large pot of boiling salted water until tender but still firm to bite, stirring frequently, about 5 minutes. Drain well, but do not rinse.

Whisk the cream, milk, flour, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and pepper in large bowl to blend. Stir in 1 cup Fontina, 1/2 cup Parmesan, 1/2 cup mozzarella, ham, if using, and parsley. Add the noodles and toss to coat. Transfer the noodle mixture to the prepared baking dish. Toss the remaining 1 cup Fontina, 1/4 cup Parmesan, and 1/4 cup mozzarella in a small bowl to blend. Sprinkle the cheese mixture over the noodle mixture. Bake until the sauce bubbles and the cheese melts and begins to brown on top, about 20 minutes.

Let stand for 10 minutes before serving.

nfIc1i342UadnH421GielkAY3fm7Tujc_lg.jpg

She said that she used chopped garlic from a jar instead of fresh, and forgot to top it with cheese. It looks scrumptious to me! 

She also noted, "I've only made this once, but a family friend makes this every 4th of July for us. It's kind of expensive to make, but I think you could easily make this instead of going out to eat. Be prepared for 2nd's or 3rd's."

I'm sure my family would love this for supper one night! 

What other ingredients would you add? 

Thursday, April 10, 2014

FOOD-Roasted Brussels Sprouts

BrusselSprouts08
http://www.livingwellspendingless.com/2013/11/20/parmesan-roasted-brussels-sprouts/



image
http://www.thelittlemomwhocould.com/2013/12/18/roasted-crispy-garlic-brussels-sprouts/


I had no idea I was a fan of brussels sprouts...until TODAY! These were so good that I had to stop myself from eating all of them and was able to save just a few for another time. They were a hit with 2 out of the 3 little kids (though the 1 year old ate one raw, so his approval may be a little questionable). 

I kind of mixed both of the above recipes together. I put olive oil on a cookie sheet (with edges) and cut the sprouts from top to bottom as thinly as possible with my paring knife. I mixed them around for a bit and sprinkled them with sea salt, garlic salt, and pepper.

I threw it in the oven (at 400) for 20 minutes, stirred them around and put them in for another 10. I sprinkled parmesan cheese on them at the end (I think you're supposed to use fresh, but I only ever have the shaker). They came out perfectly! I was so shocked at how good they tasted, and I can't wait to make them again!




Please comment with any other ideas you have for flavors/different techniques! I would love to try it next time!


Monday, April 7, 2014

Guest Post-DIY Wedding Shadow Frame With Name

https://www.groopdealz.com/deal/customized-burlap-prints---free-shipping/4508

Tracy from MN submitted an amazing wedding gift she made for a very special couple using the above link as inspiration, but putting in her own unique twist. 

She said, "I used the Silhouette which is very similar to a cricut. They had monogram letters that were 50 cents in their design studio so I bought the "S" and then put their names and wedding date in using the silhouette program. You can use any color vinyl. I went with black to match the frame.

I bought a shadow box at JoAnn's Fabric and cut the burlap to fit and glued it on inside."


I attended this wedding as well, and it may have been the most fun and hilarious wedding I have ever been to (the couple is very fun-loving, so I should have expected as much). I loved every minute of it! Her wedding decorations were so neat and this gift went right along with the theme (shown below).