Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Buffalo Chicken Fajitas


These. Will. Blow. Your. Mind.


As part of the Foodbuzz Tastemaker Program, I received this product sample at no cost. And I received no compensation for telling you that I like it. I just do. Honest.


Buffalo Chicken Fajitas

ever so slightly adapted from HungryGirl


  • 1/2 c Fiber One Bran Cereal, crushed to crumbs (or breadcrumbs)
  • 2 boneless chicken breasts (about 6 oz each)
  • 2 T egg beaters (or 1 egg)
  • 1 onion, sliced
  • Crumbled Blue Cheese
  • 2 bell peppers, sliced
  • dash onion powder (optional)
  • dash garlic powder (optional)
  • dash of cumin (optional)
  • 1 can black beans, drained and rinsed

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Spray a baking pan with non-stick spray and set aside.

If using cereal, put in sealable plastic bag being sure to remove air. Pound into crumbs using a meat mallet or roll with an empty wine bottle if you don’t own a meat mallet like me. Add garlic and onion powders, give bag a good shake. Transfer crumbs to a plate and set aside.

Now you need to pound those chicken breasts until they are about 1/3 inch thick. Again, use a meat mallet if you have one. If you don’t, use a saucepan and hope your neighbors don’t mind the atrociously loud pounding.

Top chicken with egg substitute/egg. Dip in crumb mixture until completely covered. Place baking pan and bake in the oven until crispy, about 30 minutes. Flip breasts half-way through.

Heat a skillet that has been sprayed with nonstick spray to medium-heat on the stovetop. Add pepper and onion and cook until soft, about 6-8 minutes. I used frozen peppers and it took just a wee big longer. Add black beans when vegetables are mostly done. Sprinkle with a dash of cumin (if desired) and give it once last stir. Transfer to plate.

Once chicken is done and cool enough to handle, cut into strips. Place in plastic container with marinade and toss gently until chicken is coated. Put chicken strips atop vegetables and sprinkle with blue cheese crumbles.

You can serve with cilantro lime rice, as I did, for a more complete meal. I also warmed up a few whole wheat tortillas for serving.

*Serves 2


Friday, May 27, 2011

Not to be corny…


but, you must make these amazing corn fritters! Like, now.


And then eat them atop a big pile of sweet baby greens. With lightly fried Roma tomatoes on top.


And green onions. Those are important too.


Oh and sandwiched between your fritters you’ll want to spread a layer of spicy Greek Yogurt and feta sauce.


The recipe can be found here. The only changes I made were to serve it atop sweet baby greens rather than arugula and I omitted the red pepper.

This was seriously one of the best recipes I’ve made in awhile. I loved the sweet corn in these. Aside from corn on the cob, I don’t know of many ways to prepare corn.

What’s your favorite way to prepare corn/favorite dish made with corn?


Tuesday, May 24, 2011


A few weeks back, Foodzie offered me a chance to sample their May Tasting Box. I gladly accepted because who turns down free gourmet food? Just days later I got this mystery box in the mail and quickly busted it open to see what I could immediately devour.



The enclosed tasting card says:

May is a celebration of longer, sunnier days and the anticipation of summer vacation. Close your eyes, savor a bite of dried pineapple, and imagine yourself on the shore of Kauai. Visit a small café in Bari, Italy where you’ll taste the rich flavors of handmade biscotti. Celebrate long, slow afternoons with the sweet, rich flavor of traditional Southern iced tea. Travel to the shores of California as you snack on one of nature’s salty treasures.

Bon Voyage!


I dug into the lemon poppy seed biscotti first. It was fantastic. It had the perfect amount of crunch and would definitely accompany a nice tea very well. A few days later I tried the authentic almond biscotti which I liked but not as much.


The other day I gave these a go. I’ve never had seaweed snacks before but I’ve seen them at Trader Joe’s and have been curious. I did not enjoy these at all. I ate one sheet and that was enough for me. They were way too “fishy” for me.


These cookies, however, were amazing. They are shortbread sandwich cookies covered with powdered sugar and filled with dulce de leche. Incredible.


I gave these dried pineapple pieces a try today. They are organic and have no added sugar. Initially I wasn’t so sure… I’m not always a fan of dried fruit. But after a few more tastes, I really liked these. They are quite pricey (about $2 for a single serving bag) but on sale I’d pick some up. According to their website they can be found at Whole Foods.



I haven’t tried these two last items. But once I do, I’ll be sure to let you know if either is worth your while.

Even though I loved trying these new (to me) products, I’m not sure I would spend the $20/month to receive one of these tasting boxes in the mail. However, I encourage you to browse the Foodzie site… there are so many unique and drool-worthy products from small companies and artisans.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Whole Wheat Blueberry Donuts


The sun came out. So I made doughnuts. Perfectly logical, right? I thought so.


Recently I remembered these amazing blueberry donuts we used to get at a little lakeside country store we would visit by boat. They were one of the best parts of summer mornings. Mornings when we would wake up while it was still cool and in our layers, eat donuts and watch the sun dance on the peaceful, still water.


Though summer weather seems to be far away… the recent bouts of sun have reminded me that it will be here eventually. But in the meantime I’ll just close my eyes, take a bite of one of these and remember those lazy summer mornings.


{Whole Wheat Blueberry Doughnuts}

  • 2 c. whole wheat pastry flour
  • 1/2 c. sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 t. baking powder
  • 1/2 t. baking soda
  • 1 c. plus 2 T unsweetened vanilla almond milk
  • 2 T olive oil
  • 1 t. vanilla extract
  • 1 c. blueberries
  • pinch cinnamon
  • pinch nutmeg

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Spray doughnut pan with cooking spray. In a bowl, whisk together eggs, milk, sugar, vanilla, oil, nutmeg and cinnamon. Add flour, baking powder and baking soda. Whisk until combined. Fold in blueberries. Transfer mixture to piping bag or large ziplock bag with one corner cut. Pipe mixture into doughnut pans, fill each about 2/3 full.

Bake for 15 minutes, let cool for 5 minutes and then transfer to cooling rack to cool completely.

*makes 12 doughnuts

Optional: Melt 3 T butter/margarine in a dish large enough to dip one side of doughnut. In another dish, mix together 1/2 c sugar and 1 T cinnamon. Dip doughnut in butter then dredge in sugar-cinnamon mixture.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Spring Cure-All


New England folks, what is with this weather?! Enough already, for serious. I’m so ready to disobey dress code and wear my flip-flops to work. Can we at least get a warm-up? Home girl does not like to walk the dog in mittens… in May. Work with me mother nature.


I guess it goes without saying that this weather has me down. I think even more so than the winter blues. At least winter weather is a given. Crappy May weather is just mean. But in any case, I have been feeling under the weather. I thought it was allergies and now I’m thinking it’s a sinus thing. To be frank, it feels like my eyeballs could pop out of my head at any moment. Better hope you aren’t the person I’m in front of should that happen.


Given my current condition I wanted something hearty yet healthy for dinner. And yes I feel crappy but yes I’m also being a bit dramatic. I have this theory that eating massive amounts of vegetables when I’m getting sick will keep it away. Who knows, but I guess it can’t hurt. Last night I ate about a pound of roasted vegetables and tonight I made a pasta dish with roasted peppers and creamy hummus. This one’s a keeper, albeit simple. It’s satisfying and delicious… even if I did have to have a bowl of blueberries with balsamic right after, for the antioxidants of course.

{Spaghetti w/Creamy Hummus and Roasted Peppers}

Ingredients for one

  • 2 oz dry spaghetti, I used Ronzoni Garden Delight
  • 2-4 fire roasted peppers, I used jarred
  • 2-3 T hummus (recipe to follow)

Cook spaghetti according to package. Go ahead and chop peppers while your pasta is cooking. When pasta is done, drain and put into bowl for serving. Mix hummus until fully combined. Stir in peppers at end. Eat entire bowl – you will never get sick again!

{Creamy Hummus}

  • 15 oz can chickpeas, drained with 3 oz liquid reserved
  • juice of one medium lemon
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled
  • 1/4-1/3 c tahini
  • cayenne pepper sauce, I used Frank’s
  • Salt & Pepper

Drain chickpeas of all but 3 oz of liquid. Put liquid aside. Rinse chickpeas and remove skins. This is important for creaminess, if you don’t want to bother – then don’t. Your hummus just won’t be as creamy. Transfer chickpeas to food processor. Add garlic. Pulse until roughly blended. Add lemon juice, tahini, cayenne pepper sauce and s&p. Process to smooth, adding reserved liquid through feed. Refrigerate leftover hummus and consume within 3 days.

And I lied, I cannot promise you will never get sick again if you eat this dish. But you’ll like it, I guarantee that.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Berry Balsamic Crisp


Remember I mentioned my purchases at LeRoux Kitchen? One of them was Wild Blueberry Balsamic. I tried a sample in the store and immediately grabbed a bottle to buy. It’s so delicious I can’t stop thinking of dishes I can use it in.

Picnik collage

I decided for the Wild Blueberry Balsamic’s inaugural use I would make a berry crisp for two one. I did share, I swear. But trust me, you will not want to. And I also ate 1/2 before dinner and the other 1/2 after. I think it would make a perfect breakfast too, no?

{Berry Balsamic Crisp}


  • 1/2 c. frozen blueberries
  • 1/2 c. frozen strawberries
  • 1 t. arrowroot powder (or corn-starch)
  • 2 T. old-fashioned oats
  • 2 T. whole wheat pastry flour
  • 1 T. dark brown sugar
  • 1 T. maple syrup
  • 1/4 t, cinnamon
  • 2 T. butter, divided
  • 1 t. Wild Blueberry Balsamic (or regular)
  • 1/4 t. vanilla extract

Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees.

Put the berries in a bowl and cover with arrowroot powder, toss until coated and absorbed. Add balsamic and maple syrup to berries.

In another bowl, mix together oats, flour, sugar, cinnamon, vanilla and 1 T. melted butter.

Put berry mixture in small oven-safe dish. Sprinkle oat-flour mixture on top of berries until evenly covered. Cut other T of butter into little pieces and sprinkle on topping (optional).

Bake for ~25 minutes.


Thursday, May 12, 2011

Two Blondes Walked Into a Bar…

Actually a brewery. Last weekend en route to visit family and friends in Maine, I picked up my buddette (budette?) Shari at South Station. We made it to about Portsmouth before we needed food (& drink) and the pup needed out of the car. We chose Portsmouth Brewery for lunch.


{My upper-level people-watching perch}


{x2 (one for me and one for Shari)… mmm, refreshing}











{deliciousness to share}











{for me}


{for my buddette (budette?)}











Overall, we were pretty happy with our meal. While Shari took a phone call, I wandered into LeRoux Kitchen where I proceeded to drop dollar bills on more Olive Oil and Balsamic. Be on the lookout, I’m already in love with my purchases.

If you’re in the area, check out Portsmouth Brewery… and if you’ve been to Portsmouth and have any recommendations for great grub and libations, leave ‘em here!

Monday, May 9, 2011

Another Way I Like My Vodka…


I enjoy a good cocktail from time to time. I’m not a Tequila girl, I’m intimidated by Whiskey and I may have drank too much Rum back in college. But Vodka, I can handle. In small doses. This Vodka sauce though, I could eat a bathtub full of the stuff. It’s that good, I swear.


Paired-up with delicate spaghetti squash? Yes, please. What’s even better? This version of Vodka sauce is lightened up. Does it taste like it? No. It doesn’t. Not at all. In fact, it’s still creamy and rich and packed full of flavor. And because you are eating it over spaghetti squash (which is RIDICULOUSLY good for you), you can go ahead and use your thick slice of garlic bread to wipe your bowl clean.

{Vodka Sauce}

Slightly adapted from Cooking Light

  • 1 T olive oil
  • 2-3 shallots, chopped
  • 1/4 t crushed red pepper
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1/2 t salt
  • 1/2 c vodka
  • 1/4 c vegetable broth
  • 1 can italian-style diced tomatoes, undrained
  • 1/4 light cream
  • 3 T fresh basil, chopped
  • grated parmesan cheese, for topping

Heat oil in large non-stick skilled over medium-high heat. Add shallot to pan and sauté until tender (about 4 minutes or so). Add garlic and sauté for another minute. Add vodka and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer until liquid is reduced by about half. Stir in salt, broth and tomatoes. Bring to a boil and then reduce heat. Simmer for about 15 minutes. Remove skillet from heat and let cool slightly.

Place tomato mixture in food processor, process until smooth then return to pan. Mix in cream and cook sauce for an additional 2 minutes over medium heat, stirring constantly. Remove from heat and stir in basil. You may either mix pasta (or spaghetti squash) with sauce or spoon sauce over already plated pasta. Garnish with additional basil (if desired) and freshly grated parmesan cheese.

Serves 3-4

*For the spaghetti squash, simply pre-heat oven to  350 degrees. Cut the squash in half lengthwise. Scoop out seed and goop from the middle. Place halves cut side down on a cookie sheet sprayed with Pam. When squash is done, the flesh will be easily scraped into “spaghetti” shreds with a fork.


Edited to add: I was inspired to serve my Vodka sauce over spaghetti squash by Jess over at The Saucy Kitchen.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Pea and Sausage Risotto


My roommate’s last graduate school class is tomorrow night. Therefore, Thursday has been coined the beginning of our “operation bombshell”. Have no fear, that essentially means we won’t allow ourselves to eat 2 dozen Chocolate Chip Buckwheat Cookies in 2 days. Though if you decide to make them, good luck not eating at least 5 straight out of the oven. Since I’m not taking any classes this semester, I’m merely sympathy snacking. I don’t want her to feel bad for eating more cookies than me, you know? I’m a good friend like that.

We might even get crazy and shake the dust off of Jillian’s Yoga Meltdown. The two times we did it were pretty entertaining. Or I may just stick to the gym. Catching up on world news while I get my sweat on is more my style. And my attention span stinks. I need people and things to look at to pass the time. We’ll see.

What I’m getting at is that this risotto dish was incredible easy, reasonably nutritious (I know, I know… there is SAUSAGE in it) and modifiable. Soy Sausage or chicken sausage could easily replace the Hot Italian Sausage I used. I also used very little oil and mostly water to cook the risotto. And because it was so tasty, I won’t omit it from my “operation bombshell” menu. Whatever that means.


{Pea and Sausage Risotto}

Inspired by Cinnamon Spice and Everything Nice


  • 2-3 links hot italian sausage (I used 3 leftover links… already cooked)
  • 1 red onion, diced
  • 2 T chipotle olive oil
  • 4-5 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 t dried basil
  • 3/4 arborio rice
  • 4 c vegetable broth (I used 1/2 c veg. broth with 3 1/2 water)
  • 1 c frozen peas
  • salt and pepper
  • freshly grated parmesan cheese, for serving

If your sausages are uncooked, brown them in a skillet over medium heat. If you wish, you may break them apart and cook crumbles. I chose to slice mine.

In a large sauce pan, saute onion in olive oil. When tender, add garlic and saute until fragrant. Add rice and basil and cook for several minutes. Continue to stir often.

Add about 1/2 c broth and bring to simmer. As rice absorbs broth, add more at about 1/2 c at a time. When you have about 1 c of broth remaining, add in cooked sausage and frozen peas. Add remaining broth until absorbed.

Taste test risotto to make sure rice is tender and not undercooked. Serve immediately with freshly grated parmesan cheese.

Makes 4 servings.


Sunday, May 1, 2011

Lunch at Tossed and Strolling in the City

Boston was beautiful yesterday. The sun was shining, there was a slight breeze and despite a few looming dark clouds, it was a dry day. Earlier in the month I was invited to try Tossed, a counter-service restaurant in the Prudential Center. Tossed boasts garden fresh salads, crepe wraps, sandwiches and smoothies. I popped in around 1 PM, looked over the menu and ordered the Tarragon Chicken Salad Sandwich:


I chose to have it on ciabatta bread rather than the multi-grain bread. This is how my made-to-order sandwich looked:



Do you see that lettuce?! Seriously?!!! A little disappointing. The chicken salad WAS very tasty… the Tarragon really came through and I was happy with that. However, I was disappointed with the lettuce and the amount of chicken salad compared to the single leaf. There was TONS of chicken salad… perhaps a bit too much, but that may just be a personal preference. Though it was tasty, it was also mayo-heavy… so if you don’t care for mayo, do not order this sandwich.

The meal was rounded out by a small bag of Cape Cod Potato Chips and a bottle of water. The other unimpressive thing about Tossed, the prices. I felt that they were a bit steep considering the other options in the Prudential Center Food Court for sandwiches and salads. This meal would have set me back $10. Salads were priced similarly… definitely not something I’d be able to order on the regular. With that said, I am grateful that I had the opportunity to try Tossed and tell my readers about it… if you’ve been there and have any menu recommendations, please let me know!

The Shops at Prudential Center
800 Boylston Street
Boston, MA 02199 |
View Map

Phone 617.424.TOSS (8677)
Fax 617.424.1677

Hours of Operation
Monday – Friday 8am to 9pm
Saturday 11am to 9pm
Sunday 11am to 7pm

After lunch, I took advantage of the nice day and strolled around Newbury and Boylston Streets. The crowds were out in full-force! It was a perfect day for window shopping.



I picked up some fun stuff at Anthropologie and Boston Olive Oil Company. If you are ever in the area and have never been, check out the Boston Olive Oil Company! They have SO many great varietals of Olive Oil and Balsamic. I picked up some delicious treats… you’ll be seeing them soon I’m sure!

Hope you all had a fantastic weekend and are enjoying the Spring weather.