Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Mexican Meatball Soup

Once and a while, I watch the Today Show in the morning.  It feels like an indulgence to have the TV on while I should be doing things like cleaning or exercising.  I don't know if they do a cooking segment every day but I sometimes get lucky and see something really great being made.

Back in February, Marcela Valladolid was on the show and she made a meatball soup called Beef albondigas.  It looked like something my husband would love so I wrote the recipe down.  I looked at it several times over the next few weeks and decided a few things were missing.

So...here is Marcela's recipe but with my own touch to it.

Mexican Meatball Soup
adapted from Marcela Valladolid's recipe

1/2 pound ground beef
1 pound ground pork
1 clove of garlic, minced
1/2 cup cilantro, chopped
1 egg
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1 tablespoon salt
1 teaspoon pepper
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1/3 cup white onion, finely chopped
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1/2 cup carrots, finely chopped
1 cup celery, finely chopped
14 oz can crushed tomato
6 cups of chicken broth
1 bay leaf
1 teaspoon cumin
1-2 serrano chile
1 cup frozen corn
1 cup cilantro, chopped

In a large mixing bowl, mix the ground beef and pork, cilantro, egg, salt and pepper by hand until everything is mixed together.  Using a spoon, measure 1 tablespoon of meat mixture.  Roll into meatballs and set on a plate.

In a large pot, heat vegetable oil on medium heat.  Add onion and tomato past.  Add carrots and celery.  Saute until soft and 3 minutes.  Add chicken brother and crushed tomatoes.  Bring to a boil, add meatballs, bay leaf, peppers and corn.  Simmer for 30 minutes or more.  Season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve with warmed tortillas.

Makes 6-8 servings.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Buick Discovery Tour Swag Bag

Congrats to Macey, swag bag winner extraordinaire! 

Keith and I had an amazing time at The Buick Discovery Tour on Sunday.  We test drove cars and had a culinary experience like no other!  To read all about it, click here to visit The Young and The Relentless.

Keith is giving one of my lucky readers his swag from the event.  Here is what you get!

  • An autographed copy of How to Roast a Lamb by Michael Psilakis.
  • May 2013 copy of Food & Wine Magazine
  • 3.5 oz bar of dark chocolate with a touch of sea salt.
  • All of the recipe cards from The Buick Discovery Tour.

Don't forget to follow my blog so that you don't miss the recipes when I make them....and to find out if you're a winner!

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Monday, April 15, 2013

illy latte macchiato

I love coffee.

I like it hot, I like it cold.  I like it black, I like it sweet.

I mostly like it dark and loaded with cream!

I also like coffee on the go.  Especially when I'm on a road trip and I'm in Kansas and I don't know when I'll see a Starbucks again.

illy issimo latte macchiato is coming on my next road trip with me. This would also be perfect to stash in your purse when you're chaperoning a Kindergarten Field Trip and you need a shot of caffeine!

It's smooth and delicious and only 110 calories.  It's also all natural with 100% percent Arabica coffee; sweetened with beet sugar and has zero preservatives! 

If you try this lovely beverage and decide that you love it and can't live without it, you can buy it on Amazon.  What can't you buy on Amazon these days?

Disclaimer: I have not been compensated for writing about my love of illy coffee.  I love coffee and I don't care who knows it.

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Gluten-Free Tea Party

My dear friend and PTA Co-Chair is having a baby boy in a couple weeks.  She didn't want a baby shower so instead my friend Heather and I decided to have a small gathering of our friends and drink some tea.  There were also Mimosas because it was the weekend and weekends are made for champs and orange juice.

Jennifer's 6 year old daughter was diagnosed with Celiac Disease in January and she was going to be attending the party with her her mother so I wanted to make sure we had things that she could eat.

I made egg salad and cucumber sandwiches.  I'm about to reveal the two secret ingredients to my world famous egg salad.  Are you ready?  After chopping up the eggs...add a small squirt of Dijon mustard and a sprinkle of sugar.  I made the cucumber sandwiches with whipped cream cheese and very thinly sliced cucumbers.   I love the UDI White Bread and it worked out great!

My friend Heather hosted the party with me and she took my Gluten-Free Theme and ran with it! She made cupcakes, they are from a mix but she added lemon extract and they were delicious! Her chocolate chip cookies were the best I've ever had!  She also found a great assortment of GF chips and other snacks for the kids.

A fruit and veggie tray provided by our friend Debbie and the party was complete!

The china we used for the party was purchased on Ebay when I was pregnant with my son.  I wanted a Tea Party Shower so badly but my gay brother in law ended up hosting my shower because I didn't have any friends and it didn't work out.  This china will always remind me of my first pregnancy and I love using it.  Perhaps I should use it more often....like on a random Tuesday.

Shipley's Do-nuts

Have you heard about Shipley's Do-Nuts?  If you live in the south you probably have.  Apparently, they have been around for 76 years.

When I travel I really like to eat things that are local and that I can not get in my home state.  Like I told you before, my folks have lived in Texas for 16 years and somehow I hadn't heard of Shipley's before.  I think my family was holding out on me. 

My sister ran to the closest Shipley's with my daughter on a beautiful (but cold) Sunday morning and my daughter was enthralled!  She thought that the store was pretty and that the selection was vast.

The person that helped them, handed her a bag of donut holes for free.  She was very excited to open the bag when she arrived back at her Grandparents house because the girl has never seen a do-nut hole before!

I've eaten a lot of do-nuts in my day.  They are one of my favorite treats and many of my childhood memories revolve around these wonderful dough pastries.  Shipley's Do-Nuts are the closest to the do-nuts of my childhood that I have ever come across. 

I was so happy that my kids were able to experience them and now we have a do-nut memory from Grandma and Grandpa's house. 

Do you have a favorite donut shop from your state? 

If you would like to try Shipley's you can find their locations on their website.  They are also on facebook and twitter.

Disclaimer: I was not paid to write about Shipley's Do-Nuts, but if given the chance I would blog for donuts.

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Cooper's Old Time Pit Bar-B-Que

My Mom and Dad moved to Dallas from Colorado in 1997.  I've visited them several times over the last 16 years but we've never been to Ft. Worth.  You might find this hard to believe but I used to be a red-neck.

When my parents moved, I was living on a 660 acre ranch in a little community on the Pawnee Grasslands.  I had cows, dogs, cats and a huge garden.  I drove a truck and hauled water into my house from the stock tanks when my well caved in.

In other words, this isn't my first rodeo!

I knew my kids would enjoy the real cowboy experience and I was right!  Within 20 minutes of hitting main street, my kids had a stick horse, a cowboy hat and a couple of us had sat on a cow.

We knew for sure that to top off our real cowboy experience, we wanted some good bar-b-que! There were many place to choose from but we went the place with PIT in it's name.

We were not disappointed!  Cooper's Old Time Pit Bar-b-Que was exactly what we wanted and I was thrilled that we'd picked this place without even doing any research.  I went by the seat of my pants which is totally unlike me.  I'm a planner.

We walked in the door to find the pit and a list of meat that was available for purchase by the pound.  Keith and I both really like ribs so I got the pork and he got the beef.  The kids meal came with a choice of brisket or sausage.  Both of my kids loved their choices and wanted more!

Once your meat is selected you walk into the dinning room but first you get to pick a couple sides to go with your meal.  All meals come with beans and bread but you can buy some other goodies like potato salad, corn, pickles and mac and cheese with jalapenos and bacon.  For dessert there is a selection of cobblers.  We got the peach and it was wonderful!

To wash it all down you can choose a soft drink or pop, depending on where you're from or a ice cold beer.

Can I interest you in a Hot Jalapeno Pepper?

Cooper's Old Time Pit BBQ on Urbanspoon