Apr 22 2014

Strawberry Mint Tequila Smash Cocktail for Earth Day #client

Disclosure: The Baddish Group provided me with a mini sampler of Casa Noble tequila and a gift card for writing this post. All opinions remain my own. Thank you for supporting the brands that help make this blog possible.

Happy Earth Day!

Around the world, April 22nd has been set aside as a day of action in the fight for environmental protection. Your community probably planned a river or park clean-up. There are often talks about sustainability and how to move forward in a more green fashion. We’re focusing more on our footprint and the ramifications of our actions. It’s a beautiful thing.

Strawberry Mint Smash

Today is also my mother-in-law’s birthday!

Another life-giving force, my husband’s mother calls Earth Day her birthday. This year she is traveling over her birthday, so we won’t get to celebrate in person. I raise my glass in her honor–here’s to many more!

Strawberry Mint Smash

How does Casa Noble tequila fit into this?

Casa Noble Tequila obtained its organic certification from the USDA in early 2009.  According to the USDA website, organic agriculture produces products using methods that preserve the environment and avoid most synthetic materials, such as pesticides and antibiotics. Casa Noble’s commitment to organic agriculture ensures that they’ll be producing tequila for many years to come. The soils are preserved by the process they use, including composting for fertilizer and avoiding environmentally-harmful pesticides altogether. They rotate crops, which helps maintain good soil health, and utilize livestock and insects as natural pest control. Heck, they even manually weed! In the end, you know you’re getting the best tequila possible because of the extra care they’re putting into their operation. It’s no wonder Casa Noble has been around for more than 200 years–and 7 generations–producing tequila. I can’t think of a better base for an Earth Day cocktail than one of their fine products!

Strawberry Mint Smash

Cheers!

Happy day, Mother Earth! Happy birthday, mother-in-law! And thank you, Casa Noble, for providing the perfect tequila for the occasion!

Strawberry Mint Smash

Strawberry Mint Tequila Smash
 
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Borrowing from the popular mojito, this cocktail combines strawberries with mint leaves and lime for a delightful tequila-based drink.
Author:
Recipe type: Cocktail
Serves: 1
Ingredients
  • 3 strawberries, hulled and sliced
  • 6 mint leaves, plus more for garnish
  • 1 ounce agave nectar
  • 1½ ounces lime juice (from about 1½ medium limes)
  • 2 ounces Casa Noble Crystal tequila (for more depth of flavor, you can use reposado tequila instead)
  • ice
Instructions
  1. In the bottom of a 12-ounce glass, muddle the strawberries, mint leaves, agave nectar, and lime juice, crushing the strawberries and mint well.
  2. Add the Casa Noble Crystal Tequila and stir.
  3. Add ice, stir, and garnish with mint leaves.
  4. Sip and enjoy.

You can find Casa Noble in your local package store and online:

Website: www.casanoble.com | Facebook: facebook.com/casanoble
Twitter: @casa_noble | Instagram: casanoble

Casa Noble Crystal tequila

Apr 20 2014

Stonyfield Greek Fuels The Boston Marathon–And The Marathon of My Life #client #stonyfieldblogger

Dislosure: As a member of the Stonyfield Clean Plate Club, I received coupons for free product for this post. All opinions remain my own. Thank you for supporting the brands that help make this blog possible.

Stonyfield official yogurt of Boston Marathon

It’s not easy being a mom.

You constantly feel pulled in a dozen directions at once. And it’s always a balancing act, trying to figure out how to fit in work, family time, and time for yourself. Sometimes you feel like you just can’t take another step…but step you must. You’re being counted on.

I’m not saying being a mom is like running a marathon. Yes, there is the constant trot forward in an attempt to cover ground, make progress, be better than you were yesterday. And both take practice and building endurance. But there’s no finish line in sight. This race goes on forever.

Stonyfield is the official yogurt sponsor of the Boston Marathon this year.

Not only will Stonyfield be handing out cups of yogurt to racers, their families, and race volunteers at the 118th Boston Marathon on Monday, May 21, 2014, but they also sponsored 10 runners who just missed the cut-off to the race. It’s so wonderful that they’re getting another chance at the big day! They also will be giving away a bunch of healthy living themed-prizes on the day of the marathon, including a year-long gym membership – all you need to do is tweet or instagram #StonyfieldSuperFan. That’s a conversation you’ll want to join in!

“Like the members of Team Stonyfield, we felt compelled to participate in this year’s race to show our deep love and support for the city of Boston and New England community,” said Gary Hirsherg, Stonyfield’s co-founder. “We’re so proud of our inspiring team and are excited to be working with the Boston Athletic Association to make this year’s race a celebration of Boston’s tremendous spirit and resiliency.” What a celebration it will be!

Stonyfield Greek yogurt

Stonyfield Greek helps me keep on keeping on.

Too busy in the morning for breakfast? I grab a cup of Stonyfield Organic Greek Yogurt for when I get to work. I’m really digging the Super Fruits right now. Stomach isn’t feeling too great? Up the Stonyfield Greek intake in hopes of finding balance again. There is no stopping for recovery! Baking or cooking, snacking or breakfasting, Stonyfield Greek is there for me. It’s my own little cheering squad contained in a cup. I can do it! I have a lot of miles ahead of me still…

Want to hear more about Team Stonyfield?

Join me in cheering them on! They’re all winners already!

Apr 15 2014

Cheeseburger Quesadilla Deluxe #client

Disclosure: As a Sabra Tastemaker, I was compensated for this post, as well as provided with free product. All opinions remain my own. Thank you for supporting the sponsors who help make this blog possible.

Cheeseburger Quesadilla Deluxe

I love my job, but the work week is tough. It’s hard to find inspiration in the kitchen after a full day in the office, followed by a 40-minute drive. By the time I arrive home, all I want to do is park my butt on the couch and relax. I’m spent. Unfortunately, I can’t do this; I have a family counting on me. (Which is probably fortunate, too, because, when left to my own devices, I can be shamefully lazy.) Forge on, I must!

Cheeseburger Quesadilla Deluxe

This quesadilla came from one such night when my husband was working his winter second job and I just didn’t have it in me to prepare the typical meat, potatoes, and veggie meal. I looked at what I had in the fridge–which, thank goodness, was filled with a recent shipment from Sabra Dipping Co.–grabbed the tortillas, and got to work. In no time we had a deluxe treat–something a little more than the usual, but still meeting the fast and easy requirements for Monday-through-Friday. The best part is that you make enough filling for three quesadillas, so you have leftovers to work off of the next time around. Weeknight dinners have been solved. You’re welcome.

Cheeseburger Quesadilla Deluxe

Which meals do you turn to when the week has been long and you’re just too tired to think?

Cheeseburger Quesadilla Deluxe
 
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The filling makes enough for 3 quesadillas, but it's easier to make it and keep it in the fridge than cut it back to ⅓.
Author:
Recipe type: Entree
Serves: 2
Ingredients
Filling
  • 1 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 pound grass fed ground beef
  • 1½ teaspoons garlic powder
  • 1-2 pinches sea salt
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • 1 14.5-ounce can diced fire roasted tomatoes, drained
Assembly
  • 2 10-inch soft flour tortillas
  • 1 cup (roughly 4 ounces) shredded Mexican cheese blend
  • ¼ cup Sabra Spicy Guacamole
Serving
  • 3 Tablespoons Sabra Medium Homestyle Salsa
  • 3 Tablespoons plain whole milk yogurt
Instructions
Filling
  1. Set a 10-inch cast iron skillet over medium-high heat and heat the olive oil in it.
  2. Add the ground beef, garlic powder, sea salt and ground pepper and brown the meat.
  3. Drain the fat and return to the heat, adding the tomatoes. Simmer for 5 minutes, then remove from heat.
Assembly
  1. Heat a 10-inch cast iron pan over medium heat.
  2. Lay out one tortilla and sprinkle ¼ cup of the cheese evenly over it. Spread the guacamole over that.
  3. Place the tortilla in the pan and sprinkle over the guacamole another ¼ cup of the cheese.
  4. Spread ⅓ of the filling over this, then sprinkle the remaining ½ cup of cheese over the filling.
  5. Place the other tortilla on top and heat until cheese is melted and bottom tortilla is lightly browned.
  6. Flip carefully and heat the other side until lightly browned.
  7. Remove to a cutting board or dinner plate.
Serving
  1. Cut in sixths and spread over the top the salsa and yogurt.
  2. Enjoy!
Notes
The remaining filling can be kept in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.

 

Apr 14 2014

Roasted Balsamic Brussels Sprouts

Side dishes don’t have to be elaborate. Sometimes, it’s the simplest things in life that are the sweetest. Today I have one of these simple things: Roasted Balsamic Brussels Sprouts. There are only three ingredients, including the sprouts, and most of the time spent making them is passive–you’re just waiting for the oven to work its magic. While I would happily devour a bowl of these little choux and call it a meal, more realistically, this side will provide 4 generous helpings in addition to your entree. The baking time listed will provide you with baby cabbages with a little bit of bite to them still–they are softened just the right amount, without being overcooked. My son gives them a thumbs up. My daughter was so busy stuffing her face that I couldn’t get a sentence out of her. But when she was done, the plate was licked clean. I think that’s an A+.

Roasted Balsamic Brussels Sprouts

I have tried preparing these with more Balsamic vinegar, but prefer using less. This allows for the sprouts to still shine, while being fully enhanced for your pleasure. Feel free to tweak the ratios, though, if you’d like more Balsamic flavor.

Roasted Balsamic Brussels Sprouts

Roasted Balsamic Brussels Sprouts
 
Prep time
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Author:
Recipe type: Side Dish
Serves: 4
Ingredients
  • 1 pound Brussels sprouts
  • 2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 Tablespoon balsamic vinegar
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
  2. Clean and dry the Brussels sprouts, then cut the bottoms off of them and cut in half lengthwise.
  3. Toss in the olive oil and balsamic vinegar, then spread in an even layer on the prepared baking sheet.
  4. Bake for 25-30 minutes, or until the outer leaves are browned and crispy, stirring a few times during the cooking time.
  5. Serve immediately.

Roasted Balsamic Brussels Sprouts

 What’s one of your favorite simple pleasures?

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