Top 10 Summer Snacks

Two kids at home for summer, full-time, and I find myself buying more food than I ever imagined. ย They are 5 and 3, almost 3, how much food could they possibly eat?! A lot.

They usually wake up at the crack of dawn ravenous. Carter wakes me up by saying, Maaaaam, hungry. Chloe follows by asking whats for BreafffKist. Adorable.

We serve two snacks per day, 10am and 2pm.

  1. String Cheese and apple slices
  2. Cornbread muffin and banana chunks sprinkled with ferry dust (Quick Bunny Chocolate)
  3. Blueberry muffin and strawberry slices
  4. Watermelon and feta cheese
  5. Hard boiled egg and toast
  6. Waffle slices with Sunbutter
  7. Avocado and tomato with olive oil and salt and pepper
  8. Yogurt tube with seasonal fruit
  9. Popcorn and string cheese and pear slices
  10. Goldfish and grapes

Hope you have a great week – we made it to two parks before 11am today and the kids had a ball! ย One of the many reasons I love our neighborhood, lots of parks and bike paths.

 

 

 

20 min Shrimp Scampi

When Justin Timberlake and Megan Trainor are blaring from Pandora, you know there is some serious dancing going on! After dancing at the library yesterday the party came home.

We met another group of friends at the library yesterday and it was a ball. Chloe had some pretty fun moves, and they are posted for you to see on Insta. The rain kept us inside and our library kept us busy. The summer reading program has them totally engrossed in reading, both of them!!!

Yesterday’s meal was dance friendly; you could easily dance and cook and not ruin anything.

Here’s what we did.

Shrimp Scampi + Broccoli + Angel Hair Pasta

Ingredients

1 # frozen shrimp, peeled and deveined (look for responsible fishing, Whole Foods/Metcalfes have great fresh seafood).
1 package Campbell’s Dinner Starter, Shrimp Scampi Flavored
2 heads of broccoli
1# box angel hair pasta (or rice/couscous/etc)
Salt and pepper
Room temp. Butter
Season salt

Directions
1. To quickly thaw frozen shrimp, place in colander under cold running water. Or place them on a grill pan for 30 minutes to thaw before use. When they are mostly thawed, place them in a bowl. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Set aside.
2. Boil water for pasta, cook accordingly.
3. Heat a large pan with high sides over medium to high heat. Swirl evoo or 2 tbsp butter. Add your shrimp and cook 3 minutes on each side, until light pink and curled up (don’t be scared, grease will spatter and spit, and your pan will look like shit). Add the sauce mix and scrape the bottom of your pan good to deglaze. Cover and turn heat to low.
4. While shrimp and pasta are going, rinse broccoli and cut up. Place into glass pyrex pan with 1/4 cup water. Microwave on high for 4 minutes (more or less time depending on how much broccoli you have).
5. Drain pasta and broccoli. Set aside. Add butter and 4S season salt (Penzeys) to the broccoli. (You actually need 1 tsp of butter to aid in the digestion of Vitamin A + D from broccoli).
6. Assemble the shrimp over pasta and broccoli next to it.
7. Yield= exactly 4

Enjoy your weekend!

Delicious Flavored Water

We are supposed to be drinking water. Everyday. All the time. The number of ounces you should consume is your total weight divided in half. The thought is daunting. How will I even come close? Water is so…..BORING!

Below are a few ideas to make your water lightly flavored and fun for summer. Now your water tastes a little sweeter and is pretty to look at! Plus, (if you’re goal oriented like me) it’s kind of fun to drink the water so I can eat the fruit inside my glass! Just like eating the olive last from your dirty martini. Or something like that…

Enjoy, stay cool today!!

image

Honey Garlic Shrimp

Back to the grind. I’m in the middle of making out our menu for the week, and subsequent grocery shopping list, and found this recipe. Lucky for me, I already have all of these ingredients, so less to shop for!  Now to decide on the Children’s Museum, Zoo, or Olbrich for tomorrow’s morning adventure….

BTW, making steamed broccoli and wild rice for the sides.

Honey Garlic Shrimp
1/3 cup honey
1/4 cup soy sauce (I use reduced sodium)
1 Tablespoon minced garlic
optional: 1 teaspoon minced fresh ginger
1 lb medium uncooked shrimp, peeled & deveined1
2 teaspoons olive oil
optional: chopped green onion for garnish
Directions:

Whisk the honey, soy sauce, garlic, and ginger (if using) together in a medium bowl.

Place shrimp in a large zipped-top bag or tupperware. Pour 1/2 of the marinade mixture on top, give it all a shake or stir, then allow shrimp to marinate in the refrigerator for 15 minutes or for up to 8-12 hours.

Cover and refrigerate the rest of the marinade for step 3. (Time-saving tip: while the shrimp is marinating, I steamed broccoli and microwaved some quick brown rice.)

Heat olive oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Place shrimp in the skillet. (Discard used marinade.)

Cook shrimp on one side until no longer pink– about 45 seconds– then flip shrimp over. Pour in remaining marinade and cook it all until shrimp is cooked through, about 1 minute more.

Serve shrimp with cooked marinade sauce and a garnish of green onion. The sauce is excellent on brown rice and steamed veggies on the side.

No Bake Mini Cherry Cheesecakes

Father’s Day is Sunday and the kids know Doug’s favorite dessert is Cherry Cheesecake. This recipe is easy enough that they can make it for him! Since we are attending our annual summer fundraising event Saturday, I’m a little tight on time for food prep. We are going to keep it real simple. I found this recipe and hope it works!

MINI CHERRY CHEESECAKES
Ingredients
1/2 C Graham crackers
1/4 C melted butter
1/4 C sugar
8oz cream cheese
1+1/4 C milk
3.4 oz vanilla pudding
1 can cherry pie filling

Directions
1. Preheat oven to 350 (optional) and prepare cupcake tin with liners.
2. Combine Graham crackers, butter and sugar in food processor or blender. Divide mixture into cupcake tins. Bake 5 min or freeze for 5.
3. Beat cream cheese until fluffy with electric mixer. Beat in vanilla pudding and milk slowly. Divide mix into the cupcake tins over the crust. Refrigerate 10 min.
4. Top with cherry pie filling.

Have a great weekend!

Crispy Shrimp & Asparagus with seasonal fruit salad

wp-1466083658832.jpg

When it’s 90 and humid, the logical thing to do is keep cool by swimming. Especially when you have a pool in your backyard. The kids and I were all ready to take advantage of our pool yesterday. But when we went outside to open up the pool gate, there was a friendly, hairy little critter floating across the pool, no longer living. It was gross. He was big. I think it was a big squirrel. So. Instead of telling the kids about it, which would have turned into screaming from both of them, I just said the pool was too dirty to swim and we would try again tomorrow. We got out the good old stand by, the 4 foot wide snap up pool that we have had since Chloe was 1 years old. This pool had seen better days, but alas, it still works. And if it isn’t broken, don’t fix it! Next to the mini pool we set up the water table with toys. The kids had a ball. We cooled off and enjoyed some juice boxes before heading back inside. It was really hot yesterday. And as much as I didn’t want to turn on the oven, I did.

Here’s what we quickly made after having swim time + baths for everyone (I was exhausted at this point).

Crispy Shrimp + Asparagus

Ingredients
1 box frozen shrimp (you could use fresh as well, and dredge them in flour, egg and panko but I didn’t want to)
1 bunch Asparagus
1 half of a watermelon
1 pint blueberries
1 box mix greens (I like organic girl)
1 carrot
1 lemon
1 handful of tomatoes
1 avocado

Directions
1. Preheat oven to 425*
2. Get out two rimmed baking sheets and line with aluminum foil.
3. Rinse Asparagus and bend each stalk to break away the woody parts. The Asparagus will naturally break off where it’s supposed to. Place onto the baking sheet and drizzle with evoo and salt and pepper. Place into oven for 40 minutes.
4. Prepare salad.
5. Slice watermelon
6. When the Asparagus has only 10 minutes left, add the shrimp to the oven on a rimmed, lined baking pan. Cook for remaining 10 minutes or until golden brown.
7. Enjoy! Yield – 4

Off to little gym, dentist and hair cuts! Never a dull moment ๐Ÿ˜ƒ๐Ÿ˜ƒ๐Ÿ˜ƒ

Sweet and Sour Meatballs

Ahhhh. Summer. The time where you try to balance the outdoor fun activities with maintaining the house, a little. Or in my case, barely. I’ve got to admit, this has been the best summer so far. The kids are at a great age to FINALLY do fun things without a million interruptions; blow out diapers, nursing every few hours, two naps a day, just baby stuff in general. We have taken FULL advantage of the nice weather so far. And we are grateful for the time and resources to be able to do so.

Anyway, yesterday was busy with errands and then water table in the afternoon. Dinner had to be quick.

Sweet + Sour Meatballs

Ingredients
2 heads of broccoli
1 package of organic chicken meatballs sweet and sour flavored
1 cup jasmine rice
1 red bell pepper
1 can or fresh chunks of pineapple
1 cup brown sugar
3 tbsp flour
1+1/2 cup water
1/4 cup white vinegar
3 tbsp soy sauce

Directions:
1. Cut the broccoli into small pieces and place into 8×8 pyrex pan. Add 3 tbsp water and set aside.
2. Place a non stick sauce pan on the stove top and add one cup of rice, a swirl of evoo, sprinkle of salt and fill the pot with water, until it is just above the rice. Boil on high until water reduces just below the rice and looks bubbly. Turn the burner to LOW, cover and let sit for 15 min.
3. While the rice is steaming, add the sugar, flour, water, vinegar and soy sauce to a large pan with high sides. This will make a very yummy sauce. It should thicken nicely. If not, turn up the heat and keep whisking.
4. Add thawed meatballs to the mix. Sprinkle in the pineapple and chopped bell pepper. Simmer for 10 minutes stirring often.
5. Pop your broccoli in microwave for 3 minutes.
6. Fluff rice.
7. Serve the mixture over rice and the broccoli on the side.
8. Yield – 4
Enjoy!!

We are off to the botanical garden today!!๐Ÿ˜ƒ