Monthly Archives: March 2012

Scrapbook Saturday-Family Favorites

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Hola!

Spring break has ended on a cool note. Yesterday was pretty chilly, but hopefully today and tomorrow will be a bit nicer! Yesterday I took my oldest daughter to have a physical done so that we can send the paperwork on to her university. It has been a bit emotional this past week for me. I’ve put away the kids stuff into their bins and cried like a baby! All those little things that were used by them have so much meaning to me…It’s been hard knowing that so much time has passed when it just seems like yesterday that they were all babies. But I try to always be a positive thinker and feel that there are wonderful things in store for my children!

On a happier note…food! Family favorites! Everyone has their own personal favorite food and then there is a food that is an all around favorite with my kids. They all super love “Pata de Puerco con Frijoles y Papas” (Pig feet with beans and potatoes). I just want to clarify that I don’t actually use the pig foot in this recipe. I like to use chunks of delicious pork. My mom used to make this and it was one of my favorites and now I make it for my family. I don’t have an actual recipe. It’s more like a bit of this and a bit of that type deal.

I decided to make a scrapbook page that highlights some of my kids favorite things…

I really enjoy cooking for my family and can never say “no” when they ask me to cook their favorite food…I’m a sucker like that!

Horchata is awesome! ItIt’s not kind on the waist but tastes oh so good. This drink is especially good in the summer. I haven’t made it this year yet, but as soon as I do I will post the recipe.

My oldest daughter loves chili mac. I like making it cause it’s quick and easy!

I like using little pockets as embellishments and to place my journaling cards. It also give me a place to hide my ugly handwriting! Does your family have favorites? I would love to know what they are!

Besos,

Flor

 

Skillet Cajun Spiced Flounder with Tomatoes

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Hola!

Happy Friday! What a week. Nothing too thrilling, but just a bit of everything! Sleeping in a bit, cleaning and organizing the basement, shopping for a prom dress, baking, cooking…nothing too thrilling.

As I cleaned and organized the basement I was trying to put things in like order! I put all my dozens of mason jars in two huge boxes…I have some crafts in mind for them already! I am putting together all my lost vases and miscellaneous glassware for some garden projects too! Why buy them when you can make unique pieces on your own? I also boxed up tons of card making supplies to put in a consignment sale in September. I guess even though I didn’t go anywhere spring break was pretty productive!

Why is it that during Lent (if you are Catholic and follow it) Fridays are just so darn hard? It’s only one day a week that we can’t eat meat! We can eat meat every other day of the week…It’s just a mindset I guess. This recipe is very good whether yo make it during Lent or not. . I enjoyed it, but my husband enjoyed it more!

Not only was a it good but it was pretty too!

Ingredients:

  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 4 (6 oz) pieces flounder fillets (or any white fish such as tilapia)
  • 3/4 cup onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3/4 cup diced green bell pepper
  • 2 1/2 cups tomatoes, chopped
  • 1 tbsp Cajun spice seasoning

Directions:

In a deep skillet, cook onion and garlic in olive oil on medium heat for a few minutes until soft. Add tomatoes, peppers and spices, stir and cook until tomatoes are soft, about 2-3 minutes.

Lay fish fillets in the sauce, cover and cook on medium-low until fish flakes easily, approx 12-15. To serve, place fish on plate and spoon sauce on top. Serve immediately.

A delicious mean cannot get any easier than that! I wish I’d had some bread to sop up all the delicious sauce but I didn’t and I should actually be glad. My girls didn’t want fish so they had mac n cheese . I ate my serving. My husband came home late so he didn’t eat with us. but when he ate he sure ate…everything that was left in the pan! I was so mad! The leftovers after he should have eaten would have been my lunch for the next day! Never let a hungry man at alone if you want left overs! Needless to say I forgave him!

Besos,

Flor

Recipe from: http://www.skinnytaste.com

Turkey Lasagna with Spinach & Mushrooms

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Hola!

Well, it’s Wednesday…time sure flies when you’re on vacation! It’s been pretty quiet this week here at home. Still organizing the basement a bit. I went shopping for prom dresses with my daughter yesterday and she found the perfect one! My daughter is super tiny so I thought we would find a dress that would need to be hemmed quite a bit, but we were lucky and it looks stunning on her! That is the excitement of the week so far. Pretty boring, huh? I did craft a bit last night so that was kind of nice too.

This recipe for lasagna is yummy! Who doesn’t like some kind of pasta?

Look at all that cheesiness. You just can’t go wrong! You can’t even tell that it’s good for you.

Ingredients

  • 11 oz Whole Wheat Lasagna Noodles (No-Boil, Oven Ready), about 18 noodles
  • 1 lb ground turkey breast
  • 1 ¾ cups fat free Ricotta cheese
  • 1 5-8oz bag fresh spinach leaves
  • 1 10oz package baby Portabello mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 cup low fat mozzarella cheese, shredded
  • 2 28oz jars prepared marina sauce (about 6 cups)
  • 5 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 cup fresh basil, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp pepper

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Generously spray a large, non-stick skillet with non-fat cooking spray.
  3. Saute 3 cloves of garlic until softened, about 3-4 minutes.
  4. Add in ground turkey breast, oregano, and ½ the salt and pepper. Cook until turkey is no longer pink, about 10-12 minutes.
  5. Add in mushrooms and cook until mushrooms begin to soften, about 3-5 minutes. Then add in spinach and cook until spinach lightly wilts, about 2-4 minutes.
  6. Then pour in both jars of marinara sauce, turn heat to low. Let simmer about 10 minutes, just until sauce is well-heated.
  7. Meanwhile, in a separate bowl, combine ricotta, remaining garlic, basil, and the rest of the salt & pepper.
  8. With a large, 11 x 15 lasagna dish, begin layering your lasagna. Start with a layer of sauce, then noodles (I used about 6), then ricotta mixture.
  9. Continue layering until all sauce, noodles and ricotta are finished.
  10. Top with mozzarella cheese and aluminum foil.
  11. Bake until mozzarella becomes bubbly, about 30-40 minutes.
  12. Remove from oven and take off aluminum foil. Put back in oven and heat until mozzarella begins to brown. About 5 minutes.
  13. Let cool for 10 minutes before serving.

I had never used no boil lasagna noodles. I will never go back to those other ones you need to boil and almost burn your skin off with! This is quite a healthy meal and the portions were huge. Just like I like them.

Oh, I almost forgot my weight loss update…I wish I had! last week I noted that I had lost 2 lbs. This week it looks like I gained them back. Maybe my scale was broken last week. Or maybe since I weigh myself in the am I was kind of blind and thought I lost 2 lbs? Pretty sucky!

Besos,

Flor

Recipe from http://www.laaloosh.com

Homemade Lotion Bars

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Hola!

I hope e everyone had a great weekend! I had a wonderful weekend! I visited my son this weekend at school for just a few hours. Needless to say he couldn’t wait until I left! Our basement floor is done so I was able to put 99% of my craft room together on Saturday night! I am so excited to start crafting again. I still have about 3 bins full of “non-craft” stuff that I need to organize. For each of my children I keep rubbermaid bins that I put all of their “memories” in and I need to organize all 3 of those “non-craft” stuff into each of their rubbermaid bins. I have such a hard time throwing out stuff that they have made….I am sure I am not the only mom who has a hard time.I just hope that whenever I give each of them their bins that they keep all the stuff I have so lovingly put away for them! Yesterday we went to one of my best friends sons birthday party. We had such a great time!

I have the world’s driest, cracked fingers ever!  When my children were little  I had gone to the doctor and the dermatologist and they said I had “mommy hands”. It is supposedly from so much washing, cleaning without using gloves. I just cannot clean with gloves on! I feel like whatever I am cleaning is not being cleaned properly if my hands don’t actually touch it…weird huh? I was given prescriptions by both the doctor and the dermatologist but none of them worked. My fingers get especially cracked (to the point of bleeding) in the winter. I have bought every lotion on the market and nothing has really worked. When I saw this recipe for the home made lotion bar I thought I would give it a try. Of course I had everything on hand!

I was super excited to make these because I was able to use my vintage jello molds to mold these bars into beautiful little works of art! They are so beautiful they look like you can eat them!

This certainly did not “heal” my dry skin but it sure helped! It made my hands soft and felt so much better. I am sure you can use them all over your skin, but I haven’t done that yet.

EVERYMAN’S LOTION BAR RECIPE

1 part vegetable shortening
1 part vegetable oil
1 part beeswax

Melt the shortening and beeswax a double boiler or a little pan in a bigger pan of simmering water. Stir in the vegetable oil. Pour into cups/molds and let cool. Pop out of “mold” and it’s ready to use. The beeswax will fragrance the bars with a nice, light honey smell, or you can stir in a little essential oil before you pour it into the molds.

I used some orange oil in one batch and lavender oil in another batch. They both smell divine. I actually packaged some of these and have given them away as gifts. They were a big hit and people didn’t believe that I had made them! I don’t think I will ever go back to store bought hand lotion again!

Get crafty, people!

Besos,

Flor

Inspired by http://www.littlehouseinthesuburbs.com

 

 

Chicken & White Bean Enchiladas with Creamy Salsa Verde

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Hola Friends!

 

So it’s Friday! And I am so happy because I am on vacation now! It’s been a long week with 2 late nights at work, but thank goodness it’s done! The weather has been awesome this week and I hope it stays like this through next week. I am going to be shopping for prom dresses…again! Not too much going on while I am on vacation and I guess that’s ok! I will be trying to make at least one new recipe a day. No crafting yet since my floor isn’t done yet.

Like I had said in a previous post…Mexican food is my comfort food. Unfortunately there isn’t really a way to lighten up Mexican food and it still be good. I make whatever I can find as a WW recipe that is even close to being Mexican food!

These enchiladas were good and filling! This picture isn’t good at all…

This picture is a bit better…

Chicken and White Bean Filling:

  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 1/4 cup minced white onion
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 can (4.5 oz) chopped green chiles
  • 15.5 oz can Navy beans (or Cannellini beans)
  • 8 oz cooked shredded chicken breast
  • 1/3 can water
  • 1 chicken bullion
  • 1 tsp cumin

Green Chile Enchilada Sauce:

  • 1 tsp butter
  • 1/2 cup chopped white onion
  • 2 tbsp flour
  • 1 cup fat free chicken broth
  • 7 oz can chopped green chile
  • 2 jalapeños, chopped (I used jarred)
  • salt
  • 1/2 cup light sour cream
  • 3/4 cup reduced fat Mexican cheese
  • 8 medium low carb tortillas
  • chopped fresh cilantro or scallions (or both!)

Preheat oven to 375°.


For the Filling:
In a medium pan, heat olive oil on low. Add onions, garlic and saute until soft, about 2-3 minutes. Add green chiles, beans, water, bullion, and cumin. Mix well and cover.Simmer on low 15 minutes. Remove cover, add chicken and cook an additional 5 minutes, or until it thickens and liquid boils down. Set aside.

Green Chile Enchilada Sauce:
In a large nonstick pan, melt the butter over medium heat. Add onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onion softens and starts to turn translucent, about 3-4 minutes. Add flour and stir well. Cook for 1 minute, stirring constantly. Slowlywhisk in the chicken broth. Whisk until the sauce becomes smooth. Cook over medium heat until the sauce boils and thickens, about 4-5 minutes. Add green chiles, jalepeños, and salt to tatse. Cook another minute then remove from the heat. Stir in the sour cream.

Spread about 1/4 cup of the enchilada sauce on the bottom of a 9×13″ baking dish.Fill each tortilla with 1/3 cup of the chicken/white bean filling. Roll the tortillas and place seam side down in the prepared baking dish. Continue filling remainder of the tortillas.

Pour the enchilada sauce over the top of the enchiladas. Top with cheese. Cover with aluminum and bake 20-30 minutes, until the enchiladas are hot and the cheese is melted. Remove from oven and top with fresh cilantro or scallions.

These are a far cry from the enchiladas I grew up eating, but they were delicious, filling and healthy. Real Mexican enchiladas use corn tortillas and are lightly fried in lard (I use vegetable oil). Isn’t everything better with lard? Lard just gives food a delicious flavor that you don’t get with vegetable or olive oil. But for the sake of health I have never even bought lard! Unfortunately, I didn’t have any cilantro on hand  to sprinkle on top of the enchiladas when I made them so they look kind of naked…sorry about that but they do!

Enjoy your Friday!

 

Besos,

Flor

Recipe from: http://www.skinnytaste.com

 

Get Well!

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Hola!

It has been beautiful here in Chicago for about a week…maybe a bit more! I am just hoping that we don’t get hit with any cold weather. Next week I will be on spring break! I can’t wait! I don’t have any plans as usual! I will be spending my time organizing my craft area and being kind of lazy I guess!

I don’t know why so many people are so sick. Everyone is sick,  adults and children alike. The flu is going around and so are different viruses…not fun! Maybe the change in weather? The hot weather coming in? We have been lucky here at my house.

Our craft group got together  a week ago and our theme was “Get Well”. I look forward to meeting for coffee and exchanging cards or projects with my friends every month. I so look forward to that little outing! Everyone’s cards and projects were awesome. They are a truly talented bunch of ladies! This was my card…

I love the vibrant colors and the simplicity of this card. It was a bit of stamping, but well worth it. The stamping on the card looks like designer paper. I was inspired to make this card by one of the designers for Papertrey Ink, but I forgot which one! I love Papertrey Ink. They have awesome stamping supplies. If you want to check them out you can go to http://www.papertreyink.com

So last week I ate quite a bit remember? The darned buffet? I weighed in and I have lost 2 lbs. I don’t know how much longer I can do this…I have to make it a life change. Once my husband gets the veggies in the garden going I hope it will be a bit easier because I will feel that I “have” to eat the veggies!

Have a wonderful day!

Besos,

Flor

Supplies: Stampin’Up!

 

Corned Beef and Cabbage

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Hola!

I hope everyone had a fun weekend and a great St. Patricks Day! My plans didn’t quite work out as expected. I was a bit sad. My husband and I were supposed to go on a date on Friday but we ended up going to the darn buffet! My son was home for spring break last week so they wanted to go out to eat. I don’t think I need to tell you that I overate, but I did! My husband says “We didn’t force you to eat” For real? It’s a buffet…They didn’t even have a salad bar…only lettuce…really? So I am never going to that buffet ever again! I am done! and darn my husband and his support! So we thought we would go out on Saturday, but that didn’t work either..I really need him to finish the basement floor…so that was what he was doing…and is still doing…He made up our date and buffet issue by buying me a pair of new gym shoes! I am ready to hit the street for my walking! I hope I get to start this week…we’ll see if my plantar fascitis doesn’t make me stop walking.

Friday night I put the corned beef in the crockpot so it would be ready for Saturday at lunch time.

The meat was delicious. I have to admit that I wasn’t too crazy about the vegetables! Even my girls really enjoyed the meat. They devoured it. I thought we were going to have a lot of leftovers, but the meat shrinks at least 30-40%. I was amazed at the shrinkage! Next year I will make two corned beefs.  If you have never tried corned beef you really should!

Besos,

Flor

Recipe from http://www.allrecipes.com