Saturday, June 9, 2012

{ So good } Chile Verde Chicken

Tonight's dinner was soooo good I had to share it with you right away!

I made this...

Chili Verde Chicken & Cilantro Lime Rice
{ my newest Hubby and Prince approved creation }

Serves 3-4 (serving size 1 breast & 1/2 cup of rice)

{ INGREDIENTS for chicken }

3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
4 garlic cloves, minced
2 tbsp olive oil
juice from 1 lime
salt & pepper
chili powder
3/4 cup low-sodium chicken stock
7oz can of diced green chiles
1/2 cup of Salsa Verde (I used La Victoria)

{ INGREDIENTS  for rice }

2 1/2 cups water
1 cup Jasmine rice
1/2 tsp salt
2-3 tbsp fresh cilantro, chopped
juice from 1 lime


1.  Season the chicken breasts on both sides with salt, pepper and a very light dusting of chili powder.  
2.  Add the olive oil and garlic to a large skillet, careful not to burn the garlic.  Add the chicken and increase the heat to medium-high.  Squeeze the lime juice directly over the chicken before you flip it the first time.  Cook for 3-4 minutes on each side, depending on the size of your chicken pieces.
3.  Remove chicken from the skillet and set aside.  Reduce heat to medium and add chicken stock to skillet, allow it to simmer for about a minute.
4.  Add green chiles to the skillet and bring to a simmer again.
5.  Stir the salsa verde into your green chile and chicken stock mixture, bring to a simmer yet again.
6. Finally add chicken back into the skillet.  Cover and cook for 10-15 minutes (once again depending on the size of your chicken pieces).  Flip the chicken half way through.
7.  Now it's time to start the rice while the chicken is cooking, combine water and salt in a medium sized sauce pan, bring to a boil on high.  Add the rice and reduce the heat to medium.  
8.  Stir the rice after about 4 minutes, check the tenderness of the rice at this point.  It should still be crunchy, you need to taste the rice frequently to get it to your preferred doneness **do not wait for all of the water to "disappear" or your rice will be MUSHY**  { I've tried many times to cook my rice based on a certain amount of time and it never turns out right, so I've now decided to follow in my parents footsteps and cook it until it gets to the texture I like and I'm at 2:2 }
9.  Once the rice is done, set your favorite strainer/colander in the sink and dump all of the rice and water into it.  Allow the rice to sit for a minute or two and then move it to a serving bowl.  Add the cilantro and squeeze the lime juice over the top, now stir it all together. 
{ hopefully your chicken is done now, too! }

We had some corn tortillas with ours, you could also serve it with some seasoned black beans, too, whatever you prefer { smile }

Here are a few more pics from the cooking process...

Have a wonderful weekend, lovelies!!

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Sunday, June 3, 2012

Another new favorite dinner recipe...

I am about to share one of our new favorite recipes with you...
you MUST make this yourself { ASAP }

Did I mention that they're full of flavor and super low in calories???

Again I got the idea for this meal from the June 2012 Cooking Light magazine, but made some changes to make it my own...  and luckily it turned out just as I had envisioned it!!

Tandoori Chicken wraps with Mint Raita
{ hubby and prince approved, in fact the hubby requested them for dinner again this weekend }

A little bit of this.

A little bit of that.

All wrapped up in one of these...  
Makes for a delicious meal { trust me }

And now enough of the photos and on to the recipe.

Serves 4 (serving size: approx 1/2 cup chicken & 1/3 cup of raita)

3/4 cup fat-free Greek yogurt
2 tbsp ginger, minced
1 tbsp paprika
1 tbsp fresh lime juice
1 tsp chili powder
3/4 tsp kosher salt
1/2 tsp ground turmeric
1/2 tsp ground cumin
1/4 tsp Sriracha chili sauce
3 garlic cloves, minced
2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
Cooking spray

Mint Raita:
3/4 cup fat-free Greek yogurt
3/4 cup chopped English cucumber or seeded cucumber
2 tbsp fresh mint, chopped
1/2 tsp ground cumin
1/4 tsp kosher salt

For finishing the wrap:
baby spinach
sliced red onion

California Lavash wraps/tortilla/Greek pitas (whatever you prefer)

Preheat oven to 450 degrees, move the rack to the middle position or higher in the oven.

{ DIRECTIONS for making & baking the chicken }

To make the marinade, combine the first 10 ingredients in a blender; blend until smooth.
Pour into a ziploc plastic bag, add chicken- make sure to { smoosh } it around in the bag 
to coat all sides fully.  Refrigerate for at least 4 hours or overnight.

Remove the chicken from the refrigerator, and let stand at room temperature for 45 minutes.
This is a great time to prepare the Mint Raita.

I baked the chicken on a cooling rack that I placed on a baking sheet, I also sprayed the
cooling rack with some cooking spray before putting the chicken on it.

Remove the chicken from the marinade, discard the remaining marinade.  Place the 
chicken on the prepared cooling rack/baking sheet, bake for 25 minutes flipping 
the chicken half way through the baking process.

{ DIRECTIONS for preparing the raita }

Combine Greek yogurt, English cucumber, mint, cumin and salt in a small bowl.  Mix 
the ingredients together; cover bowl and refrigerate while chicken is baking.

{ AND putting it all together }

Place your wrap on a plate and then layer the chicken, Mint Raita, baby spinach, and red onion.
Now roll up your wrap and enjoy your delicious, flavorful Tandoori Chicken Wrap!!

All wrapped up and ready to eat!!

Now go and make yourself a batch to enjoy { smile }

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Saturday, June 2, 2012

Not your everyday taco...

I know it's horrible...
I've been a tad distracted from blogging, but it's really a good thing.

I've been baking up some sweet yummies, testing out new { lighter } recipes and 
lastly working on a special cupcake project 
{ I'll share more about it soon }

Oh!  And our household has been consumed with POTTY TRAINING!
And my little genius/prince caught on fast, only two days of accidents.  
Now for tackling overnight and when we're away from home.

OKAY!  Now for the tacos that I made last weekend...

Korean-style tacos with quick pickled cabbage
{ hubby and prince approved }
I found the basic recipe for these tacos in the June issue of Cooking Light magazine and 
made a few changes to make it work better for us.

{ INGREDIENTS for tacos }
Serves 4 (serving size: 2 tacos)

1/3 cup sugar
5 tbsp soy sauce
1 tbsp Sriracha chili sauce
2 tbsp fresh lime juice
1 tbsp sesame oil
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 tsp ginger, minced
1 pound ground beef, 93% lean 7% fat
1/8 tsp kosher salt
8 corn tortillas
4 green onions, chopped
4 tbsp cilantro, chopped
1 lime, cut into wedges


Combine first 7 ingredients in a ziploc bag along with the ground beef.  Marinate 
in refrigerator for 15 minutes, while you make the quick pickled cabbage.

Empty all contents in bag into a skillet and cook ground beef on medium-high heat
until the hamburger is completely cooked.

Warm corn tortillas in another smaller skillet, medium-high heat, for approx. 20 
seconds on each side.

{ INGREDIENTS for quick pickled cabbage }
Serves 4 (serving size: 1/3 cup)

3 cups napa cabbage, chopped
1-2 tbsp cilantro, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 tbsp soy sauce
1/2 cup rice vinegar
1 tbsp sugar
2 tsp Sriracha chili sauce

Place the cabbage and garlic cloves in a medium bowl and 
mix together, set aside.

In a small sauce pan bring the soy sauce, rice vingear, sugar and 
chili sauce to a boil.

Pour the hot vinegar mixture over the cabbage and garlic, toss to coat. 
Let stand for 20 minutes.  In the last couple of minutes, add the cilantro
to the pickled cabbage. 

{ ASSEMBLING the tacos }
Place two tortillas on each of four plates and divide the hamburger mixture evenly
among the tortillas.  Then top with pickled cabbage (divided evenly among the tacos);
lastly sprinkle tacos with green onions and cilantro.
Squeeze fresh lime juice over tacos if you would like to...  I did and it was delicious!

And that's it!  
Quick and easy, with LOTS of flavor...
this recipe has now made it's way into our dinner rotation, it was that good.

Have a wonderful weekend, lovelies!!

FYI, more yummy "hubby and prince approved" recipes to come...

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Saturday, May 26, 2012

Can you say DELICIOUS? { seriously! }

The other night for dinner, I made what may no be titled my NEW favorite chicken recipe...

Chicken Scallopine with Sage and Provolone
{ both Hubby and Prince approved }
FYI...  I used Giada's recipe as inspiration...

3-4 servings
(depending on the size of your cutlets)


6-8 boneless, skinless chicken cutlets, pounded thin (my cutlets were about 2 ounces each)
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
5 sage leaves, chiffonaded*
1/3 cup grated provolone cheese
3 tablespoons olive oil
2 tsp Sriracha hot chili sauce
1/2 cup chicken stock
1 (24-ounce) jar of Barilla Napoletana Roasted Garlic pasta sauce
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
{ *see below for special directions }


Place the pounded chicken cutlets on a clean work surface, narrow end facing you.  Season chicken with salt and pepper.  Sprinkle some of the sage on piece of chicken.  Sprinkle each piece of chicken with some of the shredded provolone cheese.  Roll up the chicken and seal with one or two toothpicks.

Warm the olive oil in a large, heavy skillet over medium-high heat, then add the chicken.  Brown the chicken on all sides, 1-2 minutes per side (depending on how thin you pounded your cutlets).  Remove the chicken from the pan and set aside.

Add the chicken stock and simmer for 2 minutes while scraping up the brown bits from the bottom of the pan.  Add the Sriracha chili sauce to the jar of Napoletana pasta sauce.  Then add the spiced up Napoletana pasta sauce to the reduced chicken stock in the pan. Simmer for 5 minutes to let the flavors marry.

Return the chicken to the pan. Simmer the chicken in the tomato sauce for 7 minutes. Turn the chicken over and simmer until cooked through, 5 to 7 minutes.  (Cooking time may vary depending on how thin your chicken cutlets are.)

Remove the chicken from the pan. Season the tomato sauce with salt and pepper. Spoon some of the tomato sauce onto each plate.  Place the chicken over the sauce and serve immediately with your preferred pasta { our fave is spaghetti }
Remember to remove the toothpicks before eating.  

{ *What is chiffonade? }

Chiffonade is a special cooking technique for cutting herbs and leafy vegetables, like sage and basil, into thin strips.
1.  Stack the sage leaves on top of one another.
2.  Roll the stacked leaves lengthwise into a tight roll.
3. Now cut across the sage leaves and you now have thin strips of sage, like so...

picture via The Pioneer Woman

And that's, that!!  

If you decide to try your hand at making this, please let me know what you thought of it.

Have a wonderful Saturday, lovelies!!

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Saturday, May 19, 2012

The prince's 3rd birthday recap 2 { all about the yummies }

As I promised in my first recap of the prince's birthday party...

a post all about the yummies we served for lunch { smile }

I had originally planned to make all of the yummies that I mentioned here, but reality kicked 
in a few weeks before the party and I decided that 
{ one } it would have been too much food, what with the pizzas I was planning to also serve 
{ two } it would have taken way too much time to make all of it.  

Enough background, here's what I decided to make and serve...

{ first }
anti-pasto skewers
And... this is an actual picture from the party.
{ thank you, Heather }

I got the idea from here and made a few changes, some of them on-the-fly...
{ left out the tortellini }
{ used plain/unmarinated mozzarella balls }
{ served artichokes & pepperoncinis (mild Greek peppers) on the side }

{ second }

(picture & recipe to come in a future post)

But for now here's a run-down of the ingredients that I use...
{ avocado }
{ garlic }
{ shallots }
{ jalapeno }
{ tomato }
{ fresh squeezed lime juice }
{ salt & pepper }

{ third }
watermelon salad
Picture & recipe via
Again, I made a few changes to this recipe
{ used blackberries instead of blueberries- it's what Costco had available }
{ did not add the additional lemon zest & mint leaves as pictured above }

This salad was DELICIOUS and I will be making it as much as possible while all of these ingredients are in season.
Seriously you've got to make this one!

{ fourth }
brie tarts
Picture & recipe via Plain Chicken
These were AMAZING!  
I was told to give these a very high rating on Pinterest!! { they were that good }
Again... AMAZING!!
You've got to make these, too!

{ fifth }
the drink...  strawberry lemonade
Picture & recipe via
Use whatever berry you prefer or have on hand in the recipe...
strawberries at Costco are much more budget friendly than raspberries.

AND...  instead of making my own lemonade with the simple syrup mentioned in the recipe
I used Newman's Own Lemonade.

Another "you must try" recipe!

{ desserts }

In yesterday's post I listed the desserts that I made, but here are the links to the recipes 
{ in case you want to try them yourself }

{ train sugar cookies*** }
*My inspiration for the look of these cookies.
*I used this recipe for the sugar cookies this time, but have also used this recipe.
*Royal icing recipe.

And before I forget...

a big THANK YOU to those who helped pull this party together.

Mom Woods { for letting us use your beautiful home for the party }
Mom { for helping put together everything the day of the party }
Hubby { for making sure we didn't settle for non-Thomas balloons & marking the route to the party }
Dad { for lightening up the mood in the car when stress levels were high }
Lacey { if it wasn't for you those brie tarts would never have been made }

Have a wonderful Saturday, and trust me you've got to try these recipes!!

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Friday, May 18, 2012

The prince's 3rd birthday recap { finally }


AND...  as of tomorrow it will be two weeks since the prince's 3rd birthday party and this mommy is finally getting around to telling all of you about it.

First things first...
No.  I didn't forget to post about it, we've just had a busy two weeks.

Second...  how about a picture of my sweet birthday prince!!

Third...  the dessert table { before I forget to share it with you }

I made the bunting out of newspaper and craft paints.
{ It says, "Carter is three"... in case you don't have x-ray vision to see through the balloons }

{ Cherry vanilla cupcakes* }
{ Train sugar cookies* }
{ Chocolate chip cookies* }
*all made by me

{ you may remember when I shared the inspirations for this party here }

And finally on to the party fun!!

The coloring station.

Thomas trains to play with or for some... { teething toys }

Of course there were presents to open...
{ reminder for next year...  do cake before presents because after having opened all of the presents someone didn't want to even blow out the candles on his cake }

My boys = { LOVE }

Last, but not least a few pictures of the cuties that we got to spend the day with...

{ best buddies, sharing in their love of choo-choos }

Seriously.  Those blue eyes. { LOVE }

And for those wondering what was served for lunch...

You'll have to check back this weekend for the details.
{ FYI, the food was eaten before I could remembered, to get any pictures }

But... there were some amazing recipes that I used and everyone LOVED them, 
so come back this weekend to see which ones they were!

Have a FABULOUS Friday, lovelies!!

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Sunday, May 6, 2012

Some photos I forgot to share...

I was organizing photos on the computer tonight and realized I hadn't shared a few of the projects I completed for some new additions to my extended family...

For sweet, adorable Madeline Esta { Maddy }...

{ a little quilt and some coordinating wall hangings }

{ close-up of the wall hangings }

And then for precious little Evelyn Rose { Rosie }...

{ some appliqued onesies, burpclothes and bibs }

Have a wonderful week, lovelies!

Coming soon... recap of the prince's 3rd birthday party!

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Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Cookie baking with Grandma and Mommy.

And we're still on vacation { YAY! }

We just got back from spending the night at Grandma's house...  all of our little family including the puppy dogs got to go, usually it's just the hubby and the prince.

We had a wonderful time... 

some cookies were baked { by the prince, with help from Grandma & Mommy }

{ stirring the ingredients }

{ learning how to break an egg...  into the bowl }

{ more stirring... he's such a good stirrer }

{ this would be the face you get when you ask him to smile }

{ Mommy & the prince }

Lots of toy cars were played with, possibly by everyone... definitely the prince.

 And a certain prince played until he couldn't play any longer...

{ aren't they sweet?! }

We're hoping the weather clears up in the next few days so we can make a trip to the zoo
{ cross your fingers for us }

Have a wonderful week, lovelies!

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