med pizza better
Can I just tell you how much I have missed reading all your blogs and recipe fabulous inspiration?! So much! Honestly, I do not know how on earth last year I had two businesses as well as maintained this blog. I feel busy right now just with my one business.—Albeit less stressed…

Laughing Cow sent me a big box of their cheeses, which I adore, so I decided it was time to dust of the blog and post this recipe because it turned out to good. I made it again that weekend when friends came over by simply doubling it. It would make a great and different app for the Super Bowl too!

And by the way, I have also been busy here with my little boys and their shenanigans
boys and shenanigans

and with….

Celebrating 8 years of message...and three months of PREGNANCY!

In this picture we are celebrating 8 years of marriage…and three months of PREGNANCY!

Yep-surprise!

Hope you are well.

xo,

Bree

med pizza best

Here’s What You Need: (Serves 1-2)*
1 personal pizza crust or flatbread
2 wedges Laughing Cow Chive & Onion
Handful of kalamata olives, diced
1 artichoke heart, cut into pieces (the kind marinated in water not oil)
Greek Seasoning (I use Penzey’s )
1 large cherry tomato, sliced (I like Campari)
Salt and Pepper
Handful of baby spinach cut into strips
Low fat feta cheese (About 2 TBS)
Olive Oil
med pizza dign in
*To make this for four simply buy a 12′ pizza crust, add 5 wedges of Laughing Cow and then double the other ingredients. Yum!

Here’s What You Do:
Preheat oven to 400. Spread the Laughing Cow over the crust. Top with the olives, tomatoes, kalamata olives,  and artichoke heart . Sprinkle with feta and then season with Greek Seasoning. Drizzle with olive oil and bake for about 12 minutes. Add spinach pieces and then season with salt and pepper. Now try not to eat the whole thing like I did!

Note: Laughing Cow supplied me with their product. However, the opinions here and the recipe are all my own.

breakfast taco best

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Happy New Year My Friends!

I know  it has been way too long. I have missed all of you and your fabulous support, but the break has been much needed. And I am not officially coming back! I just thought I would share this great breakfast taco recipe with ya’ll.

Andy and I went to Curacao in December and oh was it fabulous! I am staring out at a very snowy sky right now and so wishing I was at the National Park in there right now instead–I am sure I would be equally as happy as I look here.

Happy Winter Day to you!

xo,

Bree
Here’s What You Need: (For you!)
1 cup (aka large handful of kale, chopped)*
2 TBS salsa + more for serving
1 egg whisked w/ff milk (Season with salt + pepper)
Forward seasoning from Penzey’s (or any favorite seasoning of yours)
1/4 cup (or so of cooked quinoa*)
Extra virgin olive oil
Corn Tortillas
Salt and Pepper to taste

breakfast taco4

Here’s What You Do:
Heat Evoo in a medium high pan and add the kale, seasoning it generously. Stir it frequently until it starts to wilt slightly (2 minutes or so). Add the quinoa and the salsa and stir for about a minute, adding the egg mixture. Cook for about 2-3 minutes or until the egg is down to your liking-I like mine “well done”. (I usually throw the tortilla on the top to warm it through) Scoop the kale quinoa mixture into the tortilla and top with more salsa. Enjoy starting your day healthfully!
breakfast taco5

*I love the frozen quinoa mixtures from Target! I make one in the microwave at the beginning of the week and toss it into everything as the week goes on. Also, here I used lacinto kale, which I have come to prefer or the green leafy kind.

steak3

Hi Friends!

I am still on hiatus-I promise! I just thought I would quick share this awesome and easy steak marinade with you all. I limit red meat to about 1x per month-max, but when I saw this gorgeous grass fed steak at my local organic grocer, I couldn’t resist. And it is sure did make my husband happy! J

Serve with a great glass of wine and you have an elegant easy dinner in 20 minutes. Yee haw!

Xo,

steak2

Crush peppercorns with the back of a spoon and mix other ingredients for marinade and then rub over steak. Put in the refrigerator for 30 minutes or up to overnight.

Here’s What You Need For the Marinade:

1 TBS all natural organic Worcestershire Sauce
2 TBS extra virgin olive oil
1 tsp Garlic salt
1 tsp whole peppercorns
Splash of red wine

I used this kind of steak:

1lb grasssfed flat iron Sauted in hot olive oil for about @ 6-8 minutes per side.

 

grunau wines

Check out Grunau Wines-Delish!

fajita sauce7

Hello My friends!

My goodness it has been too long!

Honestly I have to tell you that I am considering taking some time off of the blog. As much as I have loved these past two years and have been humbled by the outpouring of support, I haven’t made a single recipe in one of the piles of cook books I have, or in the stacks of  cooking magazines I collect, as I have been too busy on the quest to come up with original recipes. In many ways this has challenged me as a cook, but in many ways it has stunted me. I have always loved the challenge of following a recipe and tasting the fruits of my labor. And frankly I miss some of my favorite recipes from days gone that were not mine-Like my favorite Thai shrimp or roasted red pepper pasta. And as I sit here trying to read my chicken scratch of notes that I make when I cook, I realize in many ways, that I don’t appreciate the cooking process in the way that I did when I just cooked for cooking’s sake. A few more recipes may follow as there are piles of them that have been made and not blogged about, but I ask for your patience as I take some much needed time to step away and drink a glass of wine while making dinner with no worry about getting it done before the sun goes down to snap the perfect picture.
fajita sauce6

Don’t worry—I will be back.

Hugs,

Bree
fajita sauce5

Here’s What You Need:

1.5 cups of quartered tomatillos
1.5 cups sweet grape tomatoes
2 garlic cloves
¼ cup of evoo
½ tsp of smoked paprika
1 tsp of cumin seed
½ tsp Mexican oregan
¼ tsp chili powder
½ tsp of agave
¼ tsp salt

fajita sauce

Roast at 400 for 15-20 minutes, stirring often. Let cool and then blend until smooth. Amazingly creamy fajita or enchilada sauce!
fajita sauce2

Note: I roasted 3 zucchini, sliced; 2 bell peppers of mixed colors, sliced, 1 onion, 1 jalapeno + salt +pepper and 2 tbs of evoo and the sauce to make vegetarian baked fajitas.

There are a whole class of people who get embarassingly excited when Starbucks adds,
” Pumpkin Spice is Back!”
to their chalkboard.
I am definitely in that class.
This time of year I love all things pumpkin.

So, when Thomas’ asked me if I wanted to try their new, limited edition of Pumpkin flavored products, I was like,

“Hello! Of course!”


The bagels and english muffins have been great on their own-the perfect combo of sweet and savory.
But this Pumpkin Spice French Toast Strata really takes the cake. (Sans sugar or cream!)
I came up with it on a lazy weekend morning with my two little guys and they both asked for seconds.
Perhaps some pumpkin spice lovers in the making ;)

Enjoy my friends  and happy early weekend!

HUGS!

Bree

**Please note that this recipe was originally published in 2012 but I tweaked a few things and wanted to share again! :)

Here’s What You Need: (Serves 4)
3 Thomas’ Pumpkin Spice bagels cut into about 1″ pcs
1 tsp vanilla
1 tsp Pumpkin Pie Seasoning (I  used Penzey’s)
3/4 cup of ff milk
3/4 cup of ff 1/2 & 1/2
2 TBS of pumpkin puree*
Cinnamon
1/4 tsp of pecan or walnut pieces (found in the bakers aisle)
4 eggs
1 tsp honey
dash of salt
100% pure maple syrup

Here’s What You Do:
Whisk the eggs together, stirring in milk, half and half, the pumpkin spice, salt and the honey. Stir in the pumpkin  puree and walnuts. Pour the milk mixture over the top of the bagels and use a spatula to press them down so the milk is soaked in. Give a big generous dash of cinnamon over the top. Cover and refrigerate over night.
Preheat the oven to 400. Spray a 8×8 pan with non-stick generously. (Don’t forget the sides!)Stir the bagels up very well and bake for about 30-35 minutes. Serve warm with maple syrup.

Kid Tip:
I don’t think you really need one. This one got the two thumbs up and requests for seconds– even by my picky little one!

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croutonsgood2

Are you and your kids getting excited for Halloween?
I feel like we have so many costumed events these days. When I was a kid it was simple-Halloween on Halloween at night. You didn’t have to look up the day or time or worry about being outside after dark. {My gosh I sound old, don’t I?} I admit-I do love all the events proceeding Halloween that I never had as a kid-Halloween at the YMCA, the Haunted Woods, birthday parties, school parades, etc.
It means that despite my son wanting to be Spiderman I still had an opportunity to “urge” him to be an oompa loompa while his brother was Willy Wonka. I couldn’t stop laughing at my little guy in his green wig ;).
brady and colby halloween
On to the food-I know croutons may seem so boring, but can I just tell you that my kids eat these like chips and every restaurant or store bought crouton pales in comparison-I promise you these croutons were worth their own post!
croutonsgood

Happy Halloween and Big Hugs,
Bree

croutonsgood3

Here’s What You Need:
Hearty bread, cut into cubes (enough to cover a baking sheet in a single=1 small-medium baguette)
1/8 + cups of evoo
Seasoned salt (I like Penzey’s)

Here’s What You Do:

croutons3

Drizzle the bread with extra virgin olive oil and generously sprinkle with seasoning

croutons

Bake at 400 for 10-12 minutes, stirring often

croutonsgood4

Now serve or salad or eat like chips!

 

turkishtaco2
Have you gotten on the food truck bandwagon?!
I wish I lived closer to the city for one reason-To take advantage of the food truck craze! I love all the creative combinations you see-Mexican and Korean fusion; Chinese tamales, etc. You dream of it and they have created it.
I first discovered food trucks two years ago when my sister and I were in Austin, TX.
Here she is diving into our order of fried avocado. Brilliant, ay?!
maddy food truck
I live in a small town which of course has its advantages as well. I drive past llamas to get to my house for goodness sake– and I call that a perk!
Anyway, I have been making up all sorts of tacos in the spirit of the food trucks and these Turkish Tacos are one of many random combinations I have created.

I hope you enjoy them and stay warm this chilly fall day!

xo,
Bree
turkishtaco3

Here’s What You Need: Serves ~ 3 but easy to double!

3-4 Sweet Italian Sausages Links; casings removed (Chicken preferred to cut down on fat! Smart Chicken makes a great one)
Penzey’s Turkish Seasoning*
1 cup of chopped kale (I think lacinto or black kale work best)
Handful of pitted kalamata olives
~1 TBS of kalamata juice
1 medium/small tomato, diced
Pitas*
Crumbled feta cheese
Extra virgin olive oil
Hummus or Greek plain yogurt (optional)
turkish tacos
Here’s What You Do:
Heat about 1 capful of evoo over medium high heat. Add in Turkish seasoning (about a palmfull) and the sausage. Use the back of a wooden spoon to break up the sausage and stir it around, cooking until the sausage is browning and cooked through. Set the sausage aside and add the kale along with the tomatoes and the olives and their juices to the pan. Add another dash of Turkish seasoning and salt and pepper if you choose. Cook for about 2 minutes or until the kale stars to wilt slightly. Assemble each taco with a dollop of hummus or yogurt, the sausage, kale mixture and then a good dash of feta cheese. Enjoy!

While I am making dinner...

While I am making dinner…

Kid Tip:
I usually deconstruct my meals and use the little plastic plates with compartments. For this one I gave the boys some meat and  pita with hummus and some fruit. Baby steps ;)

*The Kangaroo pita pockets that are already cut in half work great for this. Bake them at 400 for about 7 minutes. They are especially good if you spray them with non-sick and add seasoned salt to the outside.
*I highly recommend you get this seasoning-It’s great in hummus and pretty much in anything! If you don’t have it on hand and still want to make these, go ahead and create your own mix using these spices and at least it will be close! (salt, garlic, cumin, Tellicherry black pepper,  oregano, sweet paprika)

orange chicken

As my kids get older they get pickier. Frankly I find it a little irritating that their requests stay the same-hot dogs, pizza, mac n’ cheese…
But I have to remind myself that our palates evolve and expand as we get older. So even though I may end up serving a couple hot dogs on the side, I still do try to expose the boys to different foods. And once in a while they surprise me like with this Orange & Curry Glazed Chicken. My five year old have three helpings. Yay!!

Fall hiking!

Fall hiking!

…So when you feel completely dejected that your kids once again turn up their noses and push away their plates before even trying something- don’t give up! Ask that they have at least one “no thank you bite” and maybe there’s that 10% chance that their grimace will turn into a smile of delight ;)

BTW-Thank you to the awesome teachers at the YMCA for introducing us to the “no than you bite.” Love it!

Happy chilly fall day!
xo,

Bree

Here’s What You Need: Serves 2 adults and 2 small kids (So double if you want more!)

2 TBS orange marmalade
1 TBS honey
1 TBS soy sauce (low sodium)
2 TBS evoo + more for sauteing
1/2 tsp curry powder
3 chicken breasts
Salt and pepper
orange chicken4

Here’s What You Do:
Make sauce by whisking the first 4 ingredients. Chop the chicken into bite size pieces and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Add 1-2 capfuls of evoo to a pan over medium high heat. Add the chicken and cook for about 6-8 minutes, flipping once*. Add in the sauce and cook for 4 minutes more or until it becomes thicker. Spoon the extra sauce over the chicken. Serve with basmati or Jasmine rice and cilantro.
orange chicken3

*In order to brown the chicken, if you have more than three breasts cook the pieces in batches. Otherwise they will steam.

Bandi2

Would you rather wear a beret or a fannie pack for the rest of your life?

I go with beret every time.

That’s how unbelievably dorky I believe fannie packs are.

Until I met the BANDI.

Brilliant. They lay flat on your body so you can hide them. But why would you when they are so cute!? I honestly don’t know what I did before mine. Anytime I run I wear it so I can carry my phone or my keys. Love! And I guess so does Hoda on the Today Show! ;)
baNDI TODAY

Below is an interview with one of the gifted owners of BANDI as well as a fabulous giveaway. Take it away Beth Koenig!

1. So who is BANDI Wear?    BANDI Wear is our company and BANDI is our brand.  We make pocketed accessories for stashing your small stuff while on the go.  We are 2 moms from Cincinnati Ohio who had an idea and decided to run with it :)

BANDI Beth
2. How did you come up with the concept?  It came out of a need we both had.  Bev is a walker and I am a runner.  We were both looking for a way to hold our phone, key, cash/ID while out doing activities.  Nothing on the market that we could find satisfied our desire for cute, comfortable and sleek.  While playing around with some colorful stretch fabric one day, the solution to our problem was born.
3. What has been your proudest moment to date? We get to experience that moment time and time again.  We attend many fitness expos as our belts are great for running or working out at the gym among other things.  The number of times women have stood in our booth with hand over open mouth shrieking because they have just discovered a product that is cute and will greatly simplify their lives; is always rewarding.  We hear comments like “Why didn’t I think of this! and You should be on SharkTank” over and over again!  As we are taking this interview, we are on the eve of being featured on the they  Friday segment of Kathie Lee and Hoda!  We can’t believe it! (Since my interview with Beth–they were. Yay!)
Bandi
4. Where is your product manufactured?  Our belts and headbands are proudly made in the USA.  We have a terrific factory near where we live that employs mostly individuals who are in some form of rehab.  They’re good people and do great work for us!5. Is it challenging having two business owners? Not so far!  We have been working together for almost 3 years now and have never had any issues or personality conflicts.  We both bring different things to the table which we respect about each other and we are flexible and open to each others’ ideas.
6. How did you juggle your work/personal life?  Basically, we don’t.  We work almost around the clock.  So far, we are still able to work from our homes enabling us to still get some face time with our families.  And fortunately we both have husbands and children who love to cook, so nobody is going hungry!
Bev and Beth-BANDI'S founders

Bev and Beth-BANDI’S founders

7. And most importantly, where can we find Bandiwear? BANDI belts and headbands are available at various running expos coming up this fall and will be posted on our website.  We have a growing retail base and we sell online through bandiwear.com and Amazon.com (search BANDI)
BANDI Belt

BANDI Belt

BANDI Headband

BANDI Headband

You, my friends will have BANDI love too, so get in on this great giveaway for a headband AND  belt! How you say?!
-Go to www.bandiwear.com and tell me below which pattern of each you love the most.
-Like Skinny Mommy on Facebook: www.facebook.com/skinnymommyllc
-Like BANDI on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/bandiwear

avocado flatbread

Hey friends! How are you?
” I made this recipe originally for a Culinary.net post, but thought I would share it again as the abundance of zucchini is still upon us!
Also, I hate to admit that I have been making a lot of repeats lately as I am in the craziness of my fall Spanish classes getting underway for Futura.
I hope you enjoy this fun way to use your zucchinis and stay tuned for more soon!

Have a beautiful sunny day!

Bree

Here’s What You Need: (Serves 1 to 2, but easy to double with two flatbreads and double the ingredients!)1 flat bread (I like Target’s Archer Farms Garlic Naan)
1/2 avocado
Lime
1 small zucchini, sliced
1 small ripe tomato, diced
Dash each of: chipotle, Mexican oregano, paprika Sea salt + Pepper
Extra virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon of green onions, diced

Here’s What You Do:

Preheat oven to 400°F. Drizzle oil in pan and heat over medium high (about 1 teaspoon). Season zucchini with sea salt and pepper and add to the hot pan for two minutes. Flip for two minutes more and then add tomatoes for 2 minutes.

Meanwhile, put the flat bread in the oven for 4 to 5 minutes, or until warmed through.

Smash the avocado and spread onto the flat bread using a wide knife. Squeeze half the lime over the top and the pour the zucchini mixture over the top.

Season with a dash of chipotle, Mexican oregano, paprika and another lime wedge. Sprinkle the onions over the top. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Kid Tip:
Okay, so my kids probably wouldn’t like something piled high with zucchini, so I would serve the bread warm with the avocados for dipping and save their zucchini to go on the side where I would serve them with toothpicks to make them fun finger foods!

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