Wednesday, 21 June 2017

Lemonade made with Stevia blends



There is something about a pitcher full of lemonade that gets me excited!
Nothing shouts Summer more than  LEMONADE! I can remember hauling the table and chairs down the lawn, with my neighborhood friends and out onto the street to sell our lemonade. I'm pretty sure we charged a nickel a cup, which we would get a few takers, mostly neighbors! Hahaha! But, we were entrepreneurs at 8 years old!

This classic lemonade made with Stevia Blend instead of sugar, has the same great taste, however less calories and low in glysemic index!

Lemonade with Stevia blend

3/4 cup Truvia Baking Blend or Steviacane
2 cups freshly squeezed lemon juice (about 10 large lemons)
6 cups cold water


Combine all the ingredients in a large pitcher, mix well and serve over ice.
Garnish with lemon slices and mint sprigs!


About Steviacane- A 5 calorie sweetner made of pure stevia and  cane sugar. Steviacane has 2/3 less calories than sugar, no chemicals or fillers, and it tastes and bakes like sugar. Stevia is a plant from the chrysanthemum family and originates from Paraguay, South America. It has been used as a sweetener for centuries and has zero calories and a low glycemic index.

Truvia Baking Blend-more info on this blend

Summer starts today! Yay! 

Our annual family trip to Lake Chelan starts on Friday! This has for 30 plus years, signaled the start of Summer! We bought this condo when our children were very young and they grew up going each Summer, as soon as they got out of school!

Now, my son and family bought the condo next door, so that his children can grow up and continue the tradition. And my oldest son and family stays near by at a newer complex that we can easily bike to. Other family members are not regulars, but, come when schedules and traveling works for them. 

Over the years the area has grown, it is not only a recreational area, but has developed into a fabulous grape growing area, over 200 acres of wine grapes and over 30 wineries. The Lake Chelan Valley’s young and lively wine scene is attracting attention from winemakers, grape growers and wine enthusiasts from through-out the region. Many wineries feature live summer music and lot's of savory dining options. There are annual wine weekends that include Red Wine & Chocolate, Spring Barrel Tasting and Lake Chelan Crush. In the Winter there is skiing and snowmobiling very close by.

Needless to say, I'm so excited for Friday to come, can't wait until we hit the road! Our bikes are off the hooks in the garage, the bike rack is on the back of our SUV and our tires are inflated!

We always stop at the Country Boy's BBQ in Cashmere, Wa. and have lunch, and the Anjou Bakery for the best marionberry pie in the world! While there, we pick up a couple chocolate croissants for later! Family tradition is honking the horn through the tunnel just out of Wenatchee, and the game, who see's the lake first when we come down out of the mountains into the valley of Lake Chelan! Once there, of course the squirt gun/water balloon fight, a few outings to Slide Waters and lot's of BBQ! We all have so many great memories here and are creating new ones with our children and grandchildren!



 






Thursday, 15 June 2017

Pasta, Pea and Bacon Salad



I highly recommend this Pasta Salad for your Fourth of July celebration- and any other time you want a quick to make crowd pleaser!

Wednesday, 7 June 2017

Teriyaki Mushrooms


 This is the perfect accompaniment for your steak or mushroom burger! Add chicken for a stir fry one pot meal. Very quick to make and flavor packed!

Wednesday, 31 May 2017

Brussel Sprouts with pancetta




Brussels Sprouts

They are like the proverbial stepchild of the vegetable world.  Some people run  in horror when you speak their name while others hesitate in the realm of distrust when the words “brussels sprouts” are uttered. I don’t know and haven’t quite determined why or why not some adore and others detest this tiny cabbage-like vegetable, but I know one thing – I love them!

Thursday, 25 May 2017

Not so SECRET Sauce!



Just in time for memorial day weekend! This is the sauce you love at that "World Famous Burger place"!  This ideal secret sauce for burgers is a carefully balanced, creamy blend with just enough acid, spice, smokiness, and sweetness. This was developed especially for a burger, but it works just as well as for fries, onion rings, sandwiches, deviled eggs (instead of mayo), and more. I think this concoction is just right, but it's easy to adjust the proportions according to personal taste to create your own house secret sauce.

Friday, 5 May 2017

Cilantro Margarita!

Cinco de Mayo-
The commemoration of the Mexican/French battle is not observed as a national holiday in Mexico. However, all public schools are closed nationwide in Mexico on May 5. The day is an official holiday in the State of Puebla, where the Battle took place, and also a full holiday (no work) in the neighboring State of Veracruz.

Sunday, 30 April 2017

Crispy Cheddar Smash Potatoes!




These Crispy Cheddar Smashed Potatoes are a simple and delicious side dish to any meal!  They're cheesy, buttery and so flavorful!

Saturday, 22 April 2017

How to make 'Crispy Smash Potatoes"



Barbecue season is here in Arizona, however, just around the corner- for those in the northern states. I say this, as this potato is a great side with burgers, steak and chicken! You make these in the oven, so actually even if you are not ready to fire up the "Q", you can make this easy delicious side!

Tuesday, 18 April 2017

Chicken Tarragon Salad




 There are many things I like about this recipe...first off is the fact that I made it, instead of getting it from a store.  That's not to say that there's anything wrong with chicken salad from a store, but I always like to have control of my chicken pieces, which equates to no fat, grizzle or bones.  I just love all the flavors in this recipe, the apples and celery....yum! The second thing I appreciate is that it's not overly "dressed", which translates into a lot of mayonnaise.  I think you will really like this dish, and if you look closely, you will see the almonds, tarragon, celery, apple, red onion, and dried cranberries! Do you like my Mom's baker?  It is a Guardian circa 1950's!

Friday, 14 April 2017

Easter Tablescape





One of the guarantee's of an unforgettable Easter holiday, is to set the right tone for your Easter dinner tablescape. When you are planning to host your Easter dinner, the first thing to do is to remember that it is Spring now, so the best options to decorate the table are fresh flowers, green grass and porcelain rabbits and eggs. To create a beautiful tablescape or tablescapes for your guests, you don’t need to spend large sum of money. Instead of paying a fortune for decorations of your dinner table, maybe you can choose to DIY them. 

Tuesday, 4 April 2017

Sweet Potato Pancakes



This week I am on a wonderful retreat to my favorite spa with my daughter! Pearl Laguna is a retreat I have been going to for a little over seven years now. It is a hiking, yoga and cleanse retreat. Fits me perfect! Work hard from 7 AM to 1 PM with morning yoga and a rigorous hike, followed by a 20 minute weight session or a pool class. Then its lunch and relaxation with a different mask each day and a luxurious massage. In between, I use the infrared sauna, take a nap or lay by the pool. After a relaxing afternoon, we do a evening yoga class and dinner. This year I brought my daughter with me and she is really enjoying revitalizing after having two children over the past 3 plus years.

Monday, 20 March 2017

Brooksters



Think- thick chocolate chip cookies, wrapped in a devilishly tight hug of decadent, dark brownies. Yes, beware - this hand-held treat may just blow your mind!

Saturday, 11 March 2017

Bailey Irish Cream Tiramisu- eggless





It's almost St. Patrick's day and I have a easy recipe that you will love!!

This is a quick Tiramisu Recipe and is perfect for any occasion!  The  ladyfingers are soaked in Baileys and coffee then layered with mascarpone whipped cream. It will be your new favorite no-bake dessert! Twenty minutes of preparation time and then just pop it into the refrigerator over night or at least 6 hours!

Tuesday, 28 February 2017

Herb Vinaigrette -Jamaica Inn's Chef Maurice




We are back from our island paradise in Ocho Rios, Jamaica....boo hoo! I love it there so much! Wee Bear says it's the only time in the year, I truly relax. He is right, I sit and sip coconut water in a lounge chair and stare lazily out to the sea. I enjoy watching the fishermen go by, the "Big Birds", who land in our tree and dive into the ocean right in front of me to catch a fish. I love taking my raft and heading down our stairway to the ocean and floating along with the waves. I love getting massage on our veranda, going to the local salon for a pedicure and manicure and talking to the locals about life in Jamaica. One of my very favorite things to do while in Ochi (local talk), is "Releasing the Sea Turtles". We were lucky enough this year to participate in the release. They are usually being hatched in August and September, but, this year there was a late group of 94! I wrote more about this below today's recipe. 

Saturday, 18 February 2017

Woodland Baby Shower ideas!

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When Emily approached me about partnering with her to give "Sweet One", my daughter-in-law a baby girl shower....I instantly said, "Yes"! From there it just went "Wild"! Emily and I had so much fun creating a animal forest scape throughout the living, dining and family rooms! Here is how we did it!

Thursday, 16 February 2017

Pork Tenderloin in Lime Sauce

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 This is one of Wee Bear and I favorite dishes! And, I recently had requests by two of my adult children to make this deliciousness for them! I had no idea that Tink loved this dish and TT requested me to make while we are on a our annual ski/snowmobiling trip this year. It is really pretty simple to make, and I was surprised it wasn't already on the blog! 

Saturday, 11 February 2017

Valentines Day Lunch Box






The countdown to Valentines Day is on — and one of the things Mom or Dad can do to celebrate this love-filled day is make a special lunch for her/his tot. Whether you're packing a lunch box or serving your little one at home, these sweet Valentine's Day lunch ideas will have your kiddo head over heels by lunchtime!

When Valentine's Day is on a school-day, send your little Valentines out the door with a sweet lunchbox full of love. Plus, hopefully surprising them with some fun, but healthy, Valentine's lunch options in their lunchbox will help to counteract all of the sugar they're sure to have at their class party!


 Whether your little one likes proschuitto and cheese or peanut butter and jelly, you can cut the bread into a heart shape and make his/her favorite sandwich. 

Friday, 10 February 2017

Chocolate Shortbread Hearts




Years ago this recipe was taught to me in a Eva Kenly class. I have made them nearly every year since for Valentines day. It's been my go-to recipe for Chocolate Shortbread Cutouts ever since. It's the easiest recipe ever and the taste is heavenly! Now, years later, my daughter, and now my grand daughter is making these delicious hearts...this pictorial is my daughter Tink(Holly) and grand daughter, Madison Lee (my name sake). Four ingredients, very quick to make and bake!

Wednesday, 8 February 2017

Hidden Heart Pound Cake- JJ's


 

 A whimsical treat, easy to bake!

 

How cute is this? I just start smiling as I am cutting through, giddy about how every time it turns out perfect ! This cake is solid and moist, heart is as plain as day and the color not compromised.

Saturday, 4 February 2017

Coconut Macadamia Nut Chocolate Chip Cookies

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A friend of mine, and fellow golfer/sewist told me of this recipe, she said it was her favorite cookie. I thought it sounded a lot like a Mrs. Field's cookie I once had and liked. I asked her to email it to me! 

Monday, 30 January 2017

Superbowl Wingfest- 5 preparations for wings!





Americans eat 1.33 Billion chicken wings at Superbowl 50......yes, that is 1.33 Billion with a B!  With the second most important eating day upon us there is no hotter time of year for chicken wings!

Wednesday, 25 January 2017

Cinnamon Fireball Wings!

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 Your favorite Cinnamon Whisky and chicken wings? Football never tasted soooo good! Cinnamon whisky tastes great in a mixed drink, or even straight up.....but, I'm not here to tell you how to drink your whisky. I'm here to give you the most epic football "hot wings" you will ever serve at a big game!

Wednesday, 18 January 2017

Franks Red Hot Healthy Wings


A few years ago my daughter, Tink, made us a pizza using Frank's Hot sauce. She marinated the roasted chicken in Frank's and used the marinated chicken as one of the toppings.... I loved it!! Hense, this healthier recipe using Frank's! Enjoy!

Saturday, 14 January 2017

Teriyaki Wings- Healthier

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The play off games are beginning for professional football....and we want to have our favorite wings! But, we made a New Year's resolution to eat healthier. I have the solution! This is the third recipe in my "Healthier Wing Series"! Get the Wet One's out, or at least some damp paper towels, these oooey goooey wings will delight your taste buds!

Saturday, 7 January 2017

Baked Tuscan Bread Soup

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Wee Bear and I have spent a lot of time over the years in Europe on vacations, whether it be skiing, cruising, road trips or just renting a house for a while. By far our favorite soup is a Tuscan vegetable soup. In Tuscany it is called Ribollita which in Italian means reboiled or reheated and simply refers to it as left over vegetable soup. It is delicious in cold weather and light enough in calories that I can safely put it into the "Figure Friendly" category, sans the bread! The recipe looks humble, however, this recipe blew us away! Just look at these pictures! The soup is gently simmered and baked and the bread ends up almost like a dumpling, breaking apart in the savory broth. Wee Bear had to stop between spoonfuls and proclaim how much he loved it!

Friday, 6 January 2017

Coriander Lime Wings

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Here is the 2nd recipe in my series on healthy chicken wings. This one reminds me of my time in Jamaica, the lime brings back good memories from our "Pig's, Limes and Pepper's" business! The Caribbean flavor is a take on "Jerk" seasoning, but mild. 

Monday, 2 January 2017

Spicy Sweet Chicken Wings- Healthier

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Chicken wings and football...nothing beats it! What's a Super Bowl without chicken wings? They go hand and hand with a cold beer. However, these little fried bites can wreck havoc on your waistline, especially if you are having them every Sunday!!