color tip :)

in order to add a little color to shrimp pad thai...

add some limes for squeezing and some oranges for eating! mmmm


shrimp alfredo pasta

ingredients (serves 2):
1/2 lb fusili (or any medium sized pasta: penne, farfalle, etc)
a bit of butter
handful of button mushrooms, cut into eighths or fourths
8 oz alfredo sauce (for me it was 1/2 the jar)
handful of [precooked] shrimp, each cut in half so they're still fat, not long
5 fresh basil leaves, chopped
parmesan cheese (for garnish)

bring a pot of water to a boil, add pasta, cook as directed. on medium heat, add butter to a skillet, then mushrooms and sauté until almost finished. reduce heat to medium low and add alfredo, cook until warm. lastly add the shrimp until warm (you don't want the shrimp warming the whole time or else everything will be extra shrimpy).
add the sauce to the pasta. then add basil, mix throughout. last add the parmesan and any leftover basil for a garnish.


mmm zalsa

"zalsa" is kind of an inside joke because for some reason my father-in-law always calls salsa, "zalsa." it's always good for a laugh :)
my husband looooves this salsa and he is picky when it comes to salsa. he says it has a lot of flavor (and i agree). and it's not too spicy--- but has just the right amount of kick :)ingredients:
-1/2 small jalepeno chili or 1/2 chipotle chile in adobo sauce (remove seeds and mince finely) You can buy the chipotle chili canned and keep extras on hand in the fridge instead of having to remember to buy the jalepeno pepper each time.
-1/4 small red onion, peeled and root end removed, chopped
-1 small garlic clove, minced or pressed
-2 tablespoons fresh cilantro leaves
-1/2 teaspoon salt
-pinch ground black pepper
-2 teaspoons juice from 1 lime
-2 small ripe tomatoes (about 3/4 lb), each cored and cut into eighths, or one 14 oz can diced tomatoes drained

Pulse all ingredients except tomatoes in food processor until minced, about 5 one second pulses, scraping sides of bowl as necessary. Add tomatoes and pulse until roughly chopped, about two 1 second pulses. Enjoy!

courtesy of my brooke friend! (thanks)


apricot & pine nut rice pilaf

i helped make this for my gma's 90th birthday celebration dinner... and even though we made a huge batch and it maybe didn't turn out perfectly... i knew i wanted to try the recipe again. it's really good. mmmmm
ingredients (serves 4):
1/4 cup pine nuts
1/2 cup butter (1 stick)
1/2 onion chopped fine
2 cups rice (i used jasmine)
3 1/2 cups chicken broth
1/2 cup apricots, dried and cut small

brown pine nuts in butter and remove from pan. saute onion in remaining butter and add rice when onions are soft. saute for 1 to 2 minutes. add broth and cook on low heat for 10 minutes (sometimes a little more), covered. add pine nuts and apricots and cook for 10 more minutes, stirring as necessary.

courtesy of my sister, k--- via her foody friend.


a basil tip

i learned a little tip while we were in italy...

and maybe everyone else knows this but me... but i thought it was cool :)

when you pick the leaves from your basil plant, pick the smaller leaves at the top of the plant. like so:
it helps with the growing process :)

happy summer!! click here, here, here, esp here and here for some good fresh [mediterranean style] basil recipes!


quick [yummy] waffles

i'm back!!! sorry for the long absence.

recently we got a new waffle maker. new as in: our first waffle maker. i was pretty excited. it's small and round--- so this recipe is for that sort of waffle maker. just so you know :)

ingredients (makes 6-8 waffles):
3 eggs
1 cup milk
1/2 cup melted butter
1 Tbs vanilla (optional)
2 cups flour
1/2 tsp salt
1 Tbs baking powder
2 tsp sugar
i also added a handful of frozen triple berries from costco. mmmmm

beat eggs in a bowl until thick. beat milk, melted butter and vanilla into eggs. in a separate bowl, combine remaining ingredients. sift into egg mixture, and mix well. bake as directed.

finished product with fried egg. nice breakfast.

courtesy of the oster manual that comes with the waffle maker :)