Thursday, April 25, 2013
There are a lot of things that I just prefer to make at home versus buy at the grocery store – seasoning mixes, salad dressings, dips, and granola.
Now, don’t get me wrong – sometimes grabbing a couple of those things from the store to save time is just what I need. However, granola is a completely different story. I love making homemade granola for many reasons – I can control the ingredients, the flavors, the amount of sugar and fat, oh, and it just tastes better!
Have you ever started making something at home, only to go back to your previous store-bought favorite and realize that it’s not so much your favorite anymore? That happened to me recently with granola. I bought an over-priced bag of granola, got it home, grabbed a handful, only to be disappointed in the flavor. It was just too sweet and they didn’t put any pepitas in!! They are my favorite granola ingredient but they don’t show up in any store-bought varieties.
At that point, I resolved to just continue making it at home, with the flavors and ingredients I prefer, and at a much lower price, too! And then STAR Fine Foods asked me to create a recipe using their California Extra Virgin Olive Oil. I use olive oil every single day but I wanted to come up with something a little different than an everyday dish so I created a simple, classic granola that really allows the smooth flavor of the California Extra Virgin Olive Oil to shine through. And you better believe I added pepitas!
Find the recipe for this Olive Oil Granola and many other recipes at Star Fine Foods’ website!
And enter to win one of five sets of their Balsamic Glazes. I have tried them all and you will love them – they are so versatile!
Wednesday, April 24, 2013
Sometimes the simplest of meals turn into some of my absolute favorites! I hadn’t planned on blogging this pasta but I took one bite and did a quick photography setup because I had to share these flavors with you. I’m a lover of simple, simple pasta dishes. The ingredients in this dish are ingredients that I have in the house all the time and this dish came together so quickly and simply. Served with a glass of wine, it would probably even make a great date night dinner!
Chicken sausage is one of my favorite things, I think. Right now, that is the truth anyway. Especially because I have hard time finding it here. But I found some of the Sweet Italian Chicken Sausage variety and I just started with some basic flavors – tomatoes, green onions, rosemary and feta cheese. I think I really underestimated how well the tangy feta would pair with the flavors of the sausage.
Holy moly – I can’t even explain it. The cheese made this crazy creamy sauce for the pasta and the flavors all worked together so well!
Friday, April 19, 2013
You know one of the first signs of spring and summer in Missouri? It’s when your ice cold drinks start sweating as if they’d just run a few miles. Seriously, it irritates me – it’s just one of those things. Which is why I’m excited, not only to share a new grilled cheese recipe (yes, I am obsessed) but to share a funky drink sweater called Freaker USA.
I learned about Freaker USA through a fun new site called Sweet Relish. Basically what they do is help connect people with cool stuff. You can discover, share and save anything cool you find anywhere on the web. Sweet Relish connected me with Freaker USA and I found out that they love grilled cheese just as much as I do. So to pair with their fun drink sweaters (which, by the way, can fit over any drink container – even a gallon of milk!) with a fun new, sweet grilled cheese recipe. They wrote me this note and I can’t get over how cool they sound!
Thursday, April 18, 2013
Let’s talk Wednesday Ramblings. Have you missed them over the last couple of weeks? I honestly thought I wrote those for myself and a couple of family members who read my blog but a some of you have actually emailed, tweeted and commented asking where they have gone. I really miss them too!
The truth is, my inspiration is in a bit of a valley right now. I was talking to a great friend and she reassured me that it is OK to experience “blogging block”. Like any creative job, there will be times of heavy inspiration and creativity and there will be slumps. So this is me, riding out the slump.
In lieu of a Wednesday Ramblings, I’m instead sharing some shots from my life lately. Lately I have just been trying to figure out my life – what I’m supposed to do, what I want to do and how to do it! But we’ve been having fun exploring, too. Wednesday Ramblings might not continue to be on Wednesdays every week; they might not be called Ramblings; but I promise to continue to share bits and pieces of my life like this – it is one of my favorite parts of blogging!