Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Tasty Tuesdays- Red edition

This Christmas season I've been super into the color red. Lately, food just doesn't taste as good to me if it's not red- or at least Christmas-y in some way.

This is one of our favorites. It is SO good and I love it around Christmas time because of the awesome red color. Add a green vegetable and it's perfect!

Roast Pork with Raspberry Sauce

1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. rubbed sage
1 t tsp. pepper
1 3 1/2 to 4 lb boneless pork loin roast
(I always use two 1.5ish lb tenderloins. I think they're a little more tender (hence the name) and cook faster. But they're also probably more expensive then a regular roast.

1 10oz pkg. frozen, sweetened raspberries, thawed
1 1/2 c. sugar
1/4 c. white vinegar
1/4 tsp. ground ginger
1/4 tsp. nutmeg
1/4 tsp. cloves
1/4 c. cornstarch
1 T. butter
1 T. lemon juice
3-4 drops red food coloring (opt.) I never do this...it's already very red?

Combine the salt, sage and pepper: rub over entire roast. Place roast fat side up on a rack in a shallow, roasting pan. Bake uncovered at 350 for 70 to 80 min (much less if you do the tenderloins- around 45 min) or until meat thermometer reads 160 degrees. For the sauce: Drain raspberries, reserving liquid. Set berries aside. Add enough water or apple juice to juice to measure 3/4 cup. In a saucepan, combine the sugar, vinegar, spices and 1/2 c raspberry juice. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat, simmer, uncovered for 10 min. Combine cornstarch and remaining raspberry juice until smooth; stir into saucepan. Bring to a boil; cook and stir for 2 min until thickened. Remove from heat. Stir in butter, lemon juice, food coloring and raspberries. Serve with roast.

Cranberry Chicken

This is one of those super easy college recipes but I think it's still my favorite chicken and rice dish. At one of the cooking classes I learned a more gourmet version of this but it just wasn't nearly as good.

It smells up the whole house amazingly and again, is red.

5-6 chicken breasts
1 can whole cranberry sauce
1 8oz bottle Catalina French dressing
1 envl. onion soup mix
4 c. cooked rice

Mix cranberries, dressing and soup in large bowl. Dip chicken pieces in sauce then put them in 9x13 dish. Cover chicken with sauce. Bake at 350 for 40 min or until done. Serve over rice.

Raspberry Cream Cheese Danish

This is one of my favorite holiday deserts that my mom has made over the years. I made these for our friends for Christmas this year and it seemed like people liked them too. Brady wolfs an entire one down in a day but then, he eats everything that way.

3 oz. package of cream cheese
4 Tblsp butter
2 c. Bisquick
1/3 c. milk
1/2 c. Raspberry jam
1 c. sifted powdered sugar
1-2 Tblsp milk
1/2 tsp. Vanilla

Cut cream cheese and butter into Bisquick with a pastry cutter. Blend in 1/3 c. milk and knead 8-10 times on lightly floured counter top. Roll into 12x8 rectangle. Turn onto a backing sheet that has been covered with aluminum foil. Spread jam onto the center of rectangle all the way down. Make cuts with butter knife along sides- 2 1/2 inch. Pull each side over, alternating which side goes first. Press edges of top and bottom to seal. Bake at 425 for 12-14 min. or until golden brown. Drizzle the glaze all over back and forth. Glaze is the powdered sugar mixed with milk and vanilla. Let set until glaze has hardened a little. Serve with milk.

**I always make two danishes with this amount of dough. And I don't stick to the "rectangle measurements". Then I just eyeball the jam. I still use the same glaze recipe for each one.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Spoke Too Soon

So apparently the song is just going to keep on playing- must be on repeat or something.

For anyone that doesn't already know, Brady's going to be medical red-shirting this year and will now be starting his senior year NEXT year. In about the first three minutes of the third game of the season Brady tore the main ligament in his foot. He's been in a boot since and using the most hilariously huge crutches you've ever seen.

It's a real bummer. But, we realized that it's not the end of the world and isn't going to ruin all of our life plans. We decided that grown up life goes on forever but college life and basketball don't, so we're actually excited to be around one more year.


Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Same song last verse

Yep. It's basketball season again. Our last one! We're excited for Brady's senior year. USU has won their two exhibition games and now starts their season with BYU at home on Friday. Woohoo!

Here's the latest-

Thursday, October 20, 2011


Following up on a couple of old blog posts-

I finished Gone With the Wind and loved it...until the end. I have never been more upset over any other book or movie (or real life break up of my own--truly).

But I really loved the perspective it gave on the civil war and found a new favorite fictional heartthrob. (In love with Rhett Butler)

I guess I am a gluten for punishment because I immediately ordered the popular sequel Scarlett. If you read Gone With The Wind you have to finish the story with Scarlett. I loved Scarlett. As far as sequels go I thought it a great follow up story that for the most part, stayed consistent to the feel of Margaret Michell's novel.

Now I need a new book-suggestions please! I'm open to anything.

Scarsdale Medical Diet-

The two week diet I tried went pretty well. I broke it 2 days early-so not quite two weeks. I lost 6-7 pounds and it wasn't too hard- not as bad as I thought it would be.

What I liked:
The food was great.
I could eat until I was full at meal times.
It was easy to follow-no weird foods, nothing hard to find or cook.

What I didn't like:
I didn't have quite as much energy.
I wondered if it might have slowed my metabolism down.

After trying the diet, I decided that what would be best for me is to eat the suggested foods, add one more small portion between lunch and dinner, then work out.

I would definitely recommend trying it!

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Not So Tasty Tuesday

So to give myself something to blog about I thought it would be a good idea to post new recipes I've learned every Tuesday. Well I'm not doing that today.

The last few months, my jeans have been getting tighter and tighter until I couldn't even fit into one of my favorite pairs. I was very bewildered by this as I have always seemed to think that I could eat all the yummy food I want and life would go on just the same. I've never heard of successful dieting and let’s face it, exercising is just hard -unless you're playing volleyball which is difficult to do once you've quite playing for an organized team and need to find 12 people that can/want to play. It would always break my heart-almost to the point of weeping- when my friends would decide to waste their life in the misery of eating not that great of food and/or laughably small portions. Even if I wanted to be like all these crazy people I wouldn’t even know where to start. When playing sports I just did what coaches told me to do and didn’t pay attention to the exercises. I guess I could just go outside and run but since I was finagled into running a Ragnar this summer I don’t ever have to run again in this life. And I honestly couldn’t tell you what a healthy calorie intake would be. It could be 200 or 2 million for all I know.

Well I don’t know what made me all of a sudden care enough to want to fit back into these pants since I’m sure I’ve always outgrown things and just blissfully went on to bigger sized clothing. It’s never affected me in the slightest when my BYU soccer sister scowls at my plate and smugly eats her tofu and jicima, and health lectures about our society today have always gone in one ear and out the other since they’re all meant for anyone else to hear I’m sure. Maybe it’s because my husband has the body of a Greek God carved from stone. Maybe it’s because my piano bench has been creaking rather loudly when I sit on it lately. Whatever the reason, my mom gave me a diet and I am determined to see if I can do it. Even if I don’t get an ounce smaller I want to see if I am capable of doing it. In fact, it might be better if it didn’t have any effect so that I can know for certain that my theories on the subject are correct and I can go back to being happy.

The diet is the 2-week Scarsdale Medical Diet that promises you a pound weight loss every day, or a 14 pound drop after the two weeks. My mom swears by this thing and says it’s always worked for her. I’m a skeptic but if I lose just half that I’d be happy and I just want to see if I’m capable of such a thing as a diet.

Today is my first day. I have never in my whole life had celery unless someone else brought it to a function in a bowl overflowing with ranch dressing. Now I know why. It’s disgusting.

Anyway, I’ll let you know how I do and if it works.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Tasty Tuesdays

Cooking is quickly becoming one of my most favorite things to do. This summer my cute husband surprised me with a bunch of cooking classes that I have been loving!

Here are some of the fun recipes I've learned-

Caprese Salad

Now I know this is a very common thing but the way it was served in one of my classes was the prettiest and best tasting way I've had it done.

One small package red cherry/grape tomatoes halfed
One small package yellow cherry tomatoes halfed
Fresh basil
8 oz fresh mozzarella PEARLS
Chopped garlic
1-2 shallots very thinly sliced
Salt and pepper
Olive oil
Balsamic vinegar

You can serve this on a loaf of yummy toasted chibata bread or just as a salad which is my favorite with bread on the side.

I've had caprese a lot of different ways but this is my new favorite. The different colors and the small size tomatoes and mozzarella are so pretty. I also think they taste better than big tomatoes and regular fresh mozzarella chopped up. The pearls just melt in your mouth. The shallot was also an awesome addition that I hadn't had before.

My first class was taught by a girl that just got back from Greece and Italy. She gave us some really awesome food but probably my favorite thing was also the most basic thing we had.

There's not even a name for it

Plain Greek yogurt
Honey- the real stuff is best but I found that pretty much anything tastes fine
Your favorite nut- almonds, pecans, walnuts, etc. Pecans are my ultimate favorite

This is SO tasty and makes a really great breakfast or quick snack. I also like to think that it is really healthy if you don't go crazy on the honey and get fat free yogurt which of course probably doesn't taste quite as good.

Avocado Dip

This dip is quite possibly mine and Brady's new favorite dip. The picture doesn't do it justice. I didn't learn it from a cooking class either but from my friend Jessica Omer.

You should all be very grateful that I'm sharing this with you because it is so delicious AND so easy. In fact, I hope Jessica won't be mad that I am exposing this secret because we take great satisfaction from it being deceivingly simple.

One can black eyed peas
One can white "shoepeg" corn- mini or regular
Chopped red onion
Avocados about 3 (more than I did in the picture)
Italian salad dressing- to desired wetness
Salt and pepper- maybe some garlic salt

...that's it. Serve it on a pretty dish with some lovely garnish and people will think its more gourmet than it really is because it tastes so good. When Jessica made this for me I sat there guessing all the things that might be in it- lemon juice, vinegar, olive oil, garlic, oregano?? Nope, Walmart Italian dressing.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

My Summer Reads

Now that I am officially graduated I finally have had some time to read a few books this summer! Here are the books I read and what I thought about them-

These is My Words

I absolutely loved this book. It was recommended to me by my sister who says it is her new FAVORITE book. I don't know if I would call it my favorite book but I did really enjoy reading it and finished it in about two days.

It is one of those "everything books" that combines history, adventure, hardship, happiness, and an awesome romance.

After I finished it I went back and reread my favorite parts several times. I definitely recommend it!

Sarah's Quilt

Sarah's Quilt is the sequel to These is my Words. Some people think it is even better than the first one. I loved These is my Words a little more but still really liked this book. As far as sequels go I'm not usually a huge fan but this one was really well done. It is almost like one big book split into two the way the story picks right up in a good spot and reads the same way.

I also love stories from different time periods so if you're like me, you will really like these two books. It made me realize how blessed we are to have all that we do now and really admire the strength of those pioneers and settlers. I also loved the meaning behind the title. If you read These is My Words you have to read Sarah's quilt after!

The Rescue

WARNING: Beware Nicholas Sparks lovers.

I did NOT like this book. I have never read any of his books before but I liked the movies I've seen that were done of his books (The Notebook, Dear John, Walk to Remember) so I was excited to read it. I got about half way and had to skim the rest which was still a waste of time.

I have decided that either this book was a major flop compared to his other books or the movies made from his books are better then the actual novels. Yes, I know that it says right there on the cover "#1 Bestseller" which to me must confirm that this hurried, unfulfilling love is what people now days actually like.

I'm sure that reading this book right after These is My Words also added to my dislike since it was especially cheap in comparison to that extremely wholesome AND juicy couple from a forgotten time.

What I'm reading now:

Can you believe I have not ever read the book or watched the movie Gone with the Wind? As a lover of Romantic Period movies and the Civil War, I simply don't know how this one slipped through the cracks or how I never had to read it for a class. There's no excuse really.

These is My Words was said to be like a mix of Little House on the Prairie and Gone with The Wind which is what made me think it was about time I read this book.

I am only several chapters into it but really like it so far. Scarlett was really buggin' at first but I think she might grow on me, especially if some studly guy can put her in her place a little.

This one will probably take me longer to finish now that summer is over but I would love some recommendations of other good books to read after so please share!