Friday, June 29, 2012

birthday 28

june 26:
being that last year's birthday wasn't so great, i was really looking forward to this year's...even if hubs didn't get home from work until 7:30pm :/

i knew he had to work all day and would be home late so i figured i would fill up my day full of things i loved to do...

nails:
every year i get my nails painted with OPI cajun shrimp.  it's such a pretty summery red/orange color and since it usually lasts into fourth of july, it's perfect for both.  the tradition started with celebrating my birthday in new orleans a couple years ago.  this year i decided i was going to change things up a bit and go with a different shade of red.  "i'll take gel polish #26!"  and wouldn't you know, the guy brings out...cajun shrimp, of course.  i guess the tradition continues...cajun shrimp it is.

shopping:
after my mani & pedi, i headed straight to the mall.  what goes better with freshly manicured nails than a new michael kors watch?!  i have had my eye on this one watch for months now...drooling over it every time i saw it online, buying clothes that would match the watch that i did not yet own and making several trips to the mall to "try it on."  well, since it's my birthday i figured i would treat myself (along with the collection of birthday money i received from my parents...thank you, thank you!!!) ahhh finally, it's mine and i'm in love with it!

crafts:
let's face it, being that bracelet "stacks" are all over pinterest, they are obviously so in right now.  well, that thought process transpired into searching blog after blog, a trip to hobby lobby, a trip to home depot, back to hobby lobby and quite a few hours of sitting on my living room floor pumping out bracelets.

i'm not going to lie, i did feel a little awkward for a second buying string that i used to buy with my sister when we were in daycare.  and then, what was even more embarrassing was my husband coming home to tell me that he remembered seeing girls make friendship bracelets with the same string back in "grammar school." :/
whatever, that's what's in right now and in my opinion, my stack came out pretty fab if i do say so myself. :)

dinner, finally!
so of course we go to our fav little pizza place, grimaldi's!  so delishious!!!

caprese:
pizza ~ our fav combo:
pepperoni, mushroom & olive
and last but not least,
dessert:
sticky toffee cake = omg, amazing!!!

all in all, bday was a great day...couldn't be happier :)

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Wednesday, June 27, 2012

tinga chicken: "slow cooker sundays"

slow cooker sunday's:
tinga chicken
3 hours cook time

ingredients:
chicken (i used 3 breasts)
24oz jar of salsa
1 packet taco seasoning
1 small onion
2 jalapeno
fresh cilantro

directions:
cut chicken breasts in half.  dice onion and jalapeno.  throw all ingredients into slow cooker and cook on low for 2 hours. 

after 2 hours, remove chicken and shred with 2 forks.  the chicken should almost be cooked all the way and should pull apart very easily.  cook for another 30 minutes to an hour depending on the chicken. i don't know if my slow cooker cooks extra fast but every time i use it to cook chicken it only takes 2-2 1/2 hours at the most.   
remove and serve when ready.

this chicken can be used for so many different meals.  we did chicken tacos.  i topped it with sour cream and fresh cilantro.  this recipe is super fast and easy and sooo yummy!

...

leftovers:
chicken enchiladas

ingredients:
large tortillas
shredded cheese (i used a mexican blend)
1 can enchilada sauce
toppings of your choice

directions:
place chicken in a line down the center of each tortilla.  spoon a small amount of enchilada sauce over chicken.  top with cheese.
  fold outter flaps of the tortilla to roll it up.  place upside down in dish so that the tortilla stays rolled.  once all tortillas are in the dish, pour remaining enchilada sauce over and top with cheese again.
bake in oven for 20-25 minutes on 375 degrees.

this meal is great for leftovers.  it takes no time and even though the chicken is considered "leftover," it really seems like a whole new meal.  i had to work monday evening so i was not able to be home for dinner.  i didn't have much time so, unfortunately, i was not able to make my own enchilada sauce like i wanted to. but, the can worked just fine and because of that, it took me maybe 10 minutes at the very most to prep this meal.  it was so easy to whip this meal together and have it ready and waiting for my husband when he got home, what a nice surprise :) 


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Monday, June 11, 2012

shrimp creole: "slow cooker sundays"

slow cooker sundays:
shrimp creole
5 hrs cook time

ingredients:
1 lb cooked shrimp
2 links andouille sausage
1 red bell pepper
1 green bell pepper
2 ribs celery
1 small onion
1 can stewed tomatoes
1 can tomato paste
1 tsp minced garlic
salt & pepper
tony chachere's creole seasoning
oregano
zesty table blend
rice (i used brown)

directions:
dice bell peppers, onion and celery.  add to slow cooker along with stewed tomatoes, tomato paste and minced garlic.  slice sausage and add as well.  add a generous amount of all seasoning, cajuns like their food flavor full. :)

cook on low for 4 hours.  stir occasionally.
add shrimp after 4 hrs and cook for another hour.

pour over bed of rice (mostly done with white rice but i used brown) serve when ready.

this was my first true "cajun" dish and with my husbands approval, it was great.  he was super excited to have andouille sausage and in his opinion, that really made it a home run!
i found ours in the fresh meat section at the grocery store, most should have it. (same place i got the shrimp)

...

leftovers:
this makes a pretty generous amount.  freeze what you don't eat and reheat on a lazy day :)


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Sunday, June 3, 2012

bbq hawaiian chicken: "slow cooker sundays"

slow cooker sundays:
bbq hawaiian chicken
2 1/2 hours cook time

ingredients:
6 boneless skinless chicken breasts
2 green bell peppers
1 red onion
1 pineapple
honey bbq sauce
tony chachere's creole seasoning
zesty table blend seasoning

directions:
cut the skin off the pineapple and dice.  put into a large bowl, add a little salt and stir.  dice bell peppers and red onion.  add to pineapple.  pour most of the bbq sauce into bowl.  add 1/2 cup of water, small amount of honey, zesty table blend, and tony's.  stir together, add chicken and marinate for an hour or so.

slow cooker:
remove chicken and veggies from marinade and place in bottom of slow cooker (leave juice in bowl.)  season chicken again and drizzle remaining bbq sauce over chicken.  pour marinade into slow cooker and cook on low for 2 1/2 hours. 

remove and serve when ready!

leftovers:
asian chicken tacos

i reheated the chicken and shredded it by pulling it apart with 2 forks, super easy.  the ingredients i used in the tacos were chicken, pinapple, asian coleslaw and cilantro.

coleslaw:
coleslaw kit (i made my own dressing)
greek yogurt (non fat)
1 splenda packet
juice from 1 lime
cilantro
asian sesame dressing

i didn't really proportion this out.  i just made the dressing by trial and error.  add a little, taste, add, repeat...until you like it.  add to cabbage mix and slap it on the taco...delish!

...
the chicken came out sooo juicy and tender.  loved this one!  next time i might try this without marinading it before and see how that turns out. 
what made this slow cooker sunday dish even better...
my fav sunday shirt :)
happy sunday!

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