August 30, 2015

Shrimp with Garlic Butter Caper Sauce

Shrimp with Garlic Butter Caper Sauce

1 Pound of shrimp that has been shelled and deveined
6 tbs. Butter
1 tbs. Olive oil
4 Cloves of garlic minced
1/ 4 Cup of chicken stock
Splash of white wine
Salt & Pepper
Crushed red pepper and Parmesan cheese for topping.

Heat the olive oil in a skillet over medium high heat. Add shrimp, salt and pepper. Cook for approximately 3 minutes then set side in a bowl. Add garlic to skillet and cook for about a minute stirring frequently. Add chicken stock and splash of wine. Bring to boil and then lower heat and let sauce reduce for about 2 minutes. Stir in butter and melt. Add the shrimp back into the skillet along with as much parsley and capers you like. Serve over cooked spaghetti noodles and top with crushed red pepper and Parmesan to taste.

August 25, 2015


Last month my sister had a birthday party...a Paella party! She had Paella Valenciana, a San Diego catering company that specializes in authentic Paella, cater her party. In case you don't know what Paella is, it is a rice dish from Spain that is cooked on an open fire in a large pan called a paellera. The rice is seasoned with saffron and some traditional ingredients added to the rice are chorizo, chicken, shrimp and mussels. Other things can be added like duck, crab and even lobster!

The preparation takes a couple of hours. you first heat oil in the paellera, add any meats and veggies, add seasonings and water, bring to a boil and then add the rice and finally any seafood. The finished product is delicious!

I was a little upset that we were late and I did not get to see the cooking process from start to finish, it's like cooking art!

We also had some Jamón serrano and Manchego cheese...

and my sisters gorgeous carrot cake from Extraordinary Desserts.

Hope you had a good one sis!

August 24, 2015

Loosemeat Cheeseburgers

Penelope's dinner tonight was loosemeat cheeseburgers. I thought I would try something a little different and see what she thought. She loved it!

Loosemeat Cheeseburgers

1 lb. Ground beef
1/4 Cup water
1 Package of dry onion soup mix
1/4 Cup Ketchup
1 tbs. Mustard
Garlic Powder
Salt & Pepper
Shredded Cheddar cheese

Brown ground beef, season with salt and pepper and then drain. Add water, onion soup mix, ketchup, mustard and garlic powder. Stir and simmer for a few minutes. Spoon loosemeat onto Kaiser rolls and top with cheese. If Chris were home he would also add a ton of pickles on it. Enjoy!

August 17, 2015

Mary's Secret Ingredients Box Review

Last month I was given the opportunity to review Mary's Secret Ingredients. Mary's Secret Ingredients is a "culinary surprise" subscription box. These seasonal boxes are filled with a variety of food finds. From snacks you can start munching on immediately to ingredients and recipes to create tasty meals. Some boxes will also contain small kitchen tools to add to your kitchen arsenal. I received the Summer box and was very pleased with not only the presentation but with the items that were included.

Chipz Happen Cinnful Sweet Heat- Similar to a bunuelo but made with corn, this GLUTEN FREE tortilla chip is like traditional cinnamon and sugar with a little heat of cayenne.

Delta Blues Rice Rice Grits- Delta Blues Rice Grits: Delta Blues Rice Grits are a delicious and versatile byproduct of the rice milling process.

Love Grown Foods Chocolate Power O’s- Made with navy beans, garbanzo beans, and lentils, Power O’s are a powerfully nutritious cereal and a great way to power up your day!

Rufus Teague Touch O’ Heat- Touch O’ Heat Barbeque Sauce: Rufus spiced it up a bit with this one. He always said, “A touch of heat will let you know it’s there”.

SpeeGee Co. Speegee Spatula- Speegee Spatula: The Speegee was designed to accomplish any task that the spatula could, plus a whole lot more!

Villa De Patos Maguey Sweet Sap- The starting light amber color is ideal to use as an everyday sweetener, and the dark, rich brown color adds a one-of-a-kind flavor in sweet and savory dishes

Obviously I love learning about and trying new products and Mary's Secret Ingredients is a great way to be introduced to gourmet and artisanal foods that you would normally probably not see walking your supermarket aisle. Not only does each box include a description of the items packed inside but upon receiving your box you will get recipe and meal ideas using the products, via your email. If you absolutely love something, you can easily purchase it via Mary's Marketplace.  Each box is worth approximately $30 or more but your subscription box will only cost you $25.95. What's more? Not only will this carefully curated box feed you and your family but you will also be standing with Mary as a proud supporter of Feed The Children.

My favorite thing inside the summer box was Rufus Teague Touch O’ Heat barbecue sauce. I received my box prior to the 4th of July and when I saw this sauce I knew exactly what I was going to do with it...make ribs!

Delicious, mouthwatering, fall off the bone ribs! We started these off in the oven at 250 covered with foil. Then moved them out o the grill to finish cooking on in direct heat with the grill cover down for another hour. 30 minutes prior to these being finished we slathered on Rufus Teague. This sauce was a big heat at our 4th of July barbecue, everyone asked about it. It is smoky and has a little spicy kick with a hint of sweetness. YUM!

So after reading all of this you may still be wondering who is Mary?

Mary is a lifelong food lover. For three years she has authored the internationally recognized food blog: LOVE-the secret ingredient. Every week she shares her love of great food and her passion for creating delicious and healthy recipes to give you inspiration in answering the age-old question, “What’s for dinner?”

You can learn more about Mary and her "secret ingredients" and even sign up for the Autumn box which will be shipping out next month here.

The featured product{s} in this post were provided to me free of charge. All opinions expressed in this review are my own and not influenced in any way by anyone.

August 12, 2015

SweetLeaf Water Drops Review

I have another SweetLeaf product to share with you courtesy of Moms Meet.

SweetLeaf's Water Drops are liquid water enhancers made with Stevia. They contain no artificial ingredients and have zero calories and carbs making them a great alternative to sugar filled beverages. These come in 4 flavors; Lemon Lime, Peach Mango, Raspberry Lemonade and Strawberry Kiwi. Each 2.1 fl.oz bottle contains approximately 32 servings. It really depends on how sweet you want your water. One small squeeze will give you just a hint of taste while a couple more drops will give you a flavorful sweetened drink. The bottles are small enough that you can toss in your bag for flavoring your water while on the go.

My favorite flavor of the bunch is the Peach Mango. I only put 1 or 2 drops in my water because I just like to get that fruit flavored essence. Penelope loves Water Drops and I would much rather have her drink a tall glass of water with a couple of drops of SweetLeaf then a kid friendly drink that is loaded with sugar. I know several people who as crazy as it sounds, do not like to drink water. I believe SweetLeaf Water Drops is a great way for them to get their daily water intake and enjoy it at the same time.

SweetLeaf Water Drops can be purchased online at

The featured product{s} in this post were provided to me free of charge. All opinions expressed in this review are my own and not influenced in any way by anyone.

August 02, 2015

Fit & Fresh Review

You all know I love creating bento lunches for Penelope, but this last school year I was a little discouraged because Penelope no longer wanted me to make her a bento for school. It's not that she doesn't love her "surprise lunches", she still asks for them when we are home, it's just that she was not happy with the actual bento boxes. You see all the other kids in her class carry lunch bags. So of course like any other 7 year old she wanted what her friends had. Needless to say I caved and went out and bought her a lunch bag and then proceeded to put her sandwich in boring plastic bags like everyone else... And then I was introduced to the perfect solution!

Fit & Fresh Kids Bento Lunch Kits with Insulated Bags are the perfect compromise. She gets to her carry her lunch and I get to play with it, and it's all hidden away in a cute little lunch bag that's almost like everyone else's

 The Kids Bento Lunch Kits have one main container with a sandwich sized compartment and two smaller compartments. The two smaller compartments each hold a small half cup container. The main container lid holds two ice packs to keep your child's meal fresh and cool for meal time. The whole kit comes enclosed in an insulated chiller bag in awesome prints your child will love! Plastic containers are microwave, freezer, and top rack dishwasher safe. Inner Bento Pods are removable, and includes (1) Blue and (1) Yellow.

The people over at Fit & Fresh picked the perfect kit for Penelope. She loves the design of this bag.

Here are a couple of shots of what the inside looks like with the plastic cover removed. I love that these ice packs are stored away in the lid to keep items cool.
And here is her first ever lunch in her new Fit & Fresh Bento Lunch Kit.

Grapes, raspberries, seaweed snacks, chocolate chip mini muffin, pistachios, veggie chips and a turkey and cheddar sandwich on sourdough. As you can see you can fit more then enough food for a little belly in this kit. Penelope is so excited for school to start so she can show off her new lunch bag!

You can find this and other Fit & Fresh products perfect for back to school online.

The featured product{s} in this post were provided to me free of charge. All opinions expressed in this review are my own and not influenced in any way by anyone.

Mustard Girl Review

Mustard Girl are artisan mustards made in Pleasant Prairie, Wisconsin. Created by Jennifer Connor the mustard girl herself, these delicious mustards are all-natural, gluten-free, kosher, low sodium and low calorie. Mustard Girl is all about "all American" mustards.

a symbol to remind us to  believe in our own mustard seeds, and to never give up, so we can plant the seeds for a better tomorrow. 

or as Jennifer likes to call it, her "Spread the Sunshine" philosophy which is all about giving back to the community and helping others. In fact a small portion of proceeds from Mustard Girl sales go to local non-profit organizations that benefit women and children.

I was sent all 5 Mustard Girl flavors to review; Dijon, Stoneground DeliSweet n Fancy Yellow, Sweet n Spicy Honey and Zesty Horseradish. I was as "keen as mustard" to try these. Who doesn't like mustard? It goes great on so many things. Sweet n Fancy Yellow on an all American hot dog, Zesty Horseradish on a roast beef sandwich, Dijon marinade on some juicy pork chops, Stoneground Deli on a ginormous sub and Sweet n Spicy Honey on good ol' crispy chicken tenders.

Let me tell you, these mustards "cut the mustard'! They are good quality, creamy and tasty. We used the Sweet n Fancy Yellow most in my household, it is the most versatile and kid friendly. My husband enjoyed the Stoneground Deli  it was zesty and the added texture from the mustard seeds makes it extra special. My favorite was the Dijon, I love it on sandwiches and use it as an ingredient in homemade salad dressings. You can find some great recipes using Mustard Girl on their website.

To find out where you can purchase Mustard Girl visit the link here.

The featured product{s} in this post were provided to me free of charge. All opinions expressed in this review are my own and not influenced in any way by anyone.

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