Wednesday, April 28, 2010

My take on Food and a Burger recipe...

It’s no secret that I am a self-proclaimed foodie. Well, actually, Brian and I both are. We just LOVE food. Add this to the fact that I am a Food-Network-a-holic, and we entered DANGEROUS TERRITORY when we got married. After the big move, I pretty much baked everything delicious that I’d been dying to try in order to assure my new Husband that I could keep his belly full… and well… a few months later we were freaking out that we had to go home for Christmas and have people see the weight we’d gained. It was not pretty. Thus the dieting began, and now I feel like we’ve got a pretty good handle on balancing the comfort food and Paula Deen deserts, with flavorful chicken dinners that won’t cause the scales to tip. Most of the recipes I make are from the fabulous Rachael Ray… I’m pretty sure we are supposed to be related somehow (LOVE that girl). I also looove to indulge in sweets and those recipes come from Miss Paula, Giada DeLaurentiis, and most recently the Pioneer Woman, Ree. You MUST check her out! I’m pretty sure I’ll need an entire post just to describe the awesomeness that she is.

So after starting this blog, I’m wondering where in the world to start? As I look over the looong list of recipes I’ve made, I get hungry… So I think I’ll go whip up some Chicken Tacos and Guacamole and get back to ya’ll.

Just Kidding… that was so rude of me. I’ll leave ya with a RR open-faced burger recipe that was DELISH…. Bri had two... and those puppies were BIG. You’ll find if visit this page again, that I NEVER follow a recipe exactly, so if you need that kind of by-the-book cooking, sorry Charlie.

Long Boy Tex-Mex Burger by Rachael Ray

Patty Ingredients:
2 6-inch long oval-shaped rolls (I used panini rolls from Trader Joe’s)
2 pounds ground sirloin
Salt and pepper
A palmful of cumin
Half a medium onion, grated with a micro plane/ cheese grater
EVOO (A staple in all my cooking… splurge on the good stuff- it’s worth it)
4 Slices of Sharp Cheddar Cheese

For the Pico de Gallo:
4 small Roma/Plum tomatoes, seeded and finely chopped
1 jalapeño pepper, seeded and finely chopped
1/2 small red onion, finely chopped (We left this out... not big on raw onion)
A big handful cilantro (Looove this stuff)
Juice of 1 lime (Give it a good roll on the counter before you juice it)
Plenty of Salt

My Guacamole Recipe
4 small ripe avocados (The brown super soft ones)
2 vine ripened tomatoes (Seeded and finely chopped)
2 jalapenos (Seeded and finely chopped)
Small bunch of Cilantro (Finely chopped)
Juice of a lime
Dash of Garlic powder
Dash of Cumin
Dash of oregano

You can use a food processor for the avacado, or if you like it chunky (like me) just grab a fork and give it a good mash. Add the rest of the ingredients and stir. Grab a chip and give it a taste to adjust salt/seasonings.

Split the rolls and put them under the broiler for a few minutes to get them nice and toasty.

Put the meat in a large bowl with salt, pepper, cumin, and grated onion. Take off your rings and mix it all up! Form 4 thick oval-shaped burgers, each about an inch thick and about 6 inches long. Put some EVOO in a large skillet and cook for about 7 minutes on each side. (You can also grill these burgers… but our lovely apt complex doesn’t allow them… ridiculous) Melt cheese over the burgers during the last few minutes of cook time.

Mix up the ingredients for the Pico de Gallo.

Place each burger on a bun half and serve open-faced, topped with guac and pico.

Now take a big messy bite and say Mmmmmm!

P.S. I'm gonna make a link under "In the kitchen" to each new recipe I blog about so you can find them easily.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Not just Blog Stalking anymore...

I’ve recently been doing a lot of what I call “Blog Stalking.” After discovering the vast and exciting world of Blogs, I now follow about a dozen of them and spend some time each day [okay, sometimes way too much] on my little pink laptop reading about other couples/families and gaining encouragement, inspiration, laughs and some GOOD recipes! After a while, friends starting saying; “Why don’t YOU start a blog?” To which I grimaced and inwardly thought “And WHY would I want to put myself out there like that?!” It was another month or so of feeling like I could die from lack of purpose out here in SoCal before I decided that maybe I DO have something to offer to the blog world… SO HERE GOES NOTHIN’…
I suppose that since my profile is so short and sweet, I should give a background as to WHY my pretty little Midwestern head is wayyyyy out here in the land of Sun and Sand.

On June 12th of last year, my recently graduated Fiancé and I tied the knot, at our home church and had a beautiful reception down the street from where I grew up. We then flew to Orlando for a week long Honeymoon at Walt Disney World… It was what I’d dreamed of my WHOLE LIFE. My fairy tale was coming true and Prince Charming and I were riding off into the sunset (or in circles on “It’s a Small World”) Anyway…

The wedding was wonderful, the honeymoon was bliss, and we had two days to get our booties to San Diego so Brian could start his Computer Engineering Job! My amazing Daddy and Bri (I never call him Brian) packed up the cars and a U-Haul and started the trek across the country. Meanwhile, I said my goodbyes to my dear family and friends and hopped a plane heading west. (I don’t do well on long car trips)

Ten months later, we’re still here and still sooo in love (it’s a little sickening actually.) The first few months I spent setting up house… swiping that Pottery Barn card and adding my little touch on our rented 2 Bed/2 Bath abode. After having a nasty case of homesickness and starting to wonder what to do with myself, I found a job babysitting twice a week for a wonderful family and our first friends here in San Diego. Just recently, those dear people decided that it was time for them to move to LA (2 hours north of us), which left me wondering once again; “What am I going to do with myself?” Before moving to California, I always had a job. I worked as a teenager, and all through college; as a Summer Camp Manager, Full time Nanny, After-school program worker, and Youth Specialist. I’ve loved working with kiddos because, well, it’s what I’m good at (and they’re so darn cute!) But my passion in life was never fulfilled by any job I’ve had. From as far back as I can remember, all I’ve ever wanted to be was a homemaker, devoted wife, and stay-at-home Mom. Soooo I’ve decided to not resist God’s calling for me any longer… and here we are. I’m going to write about the 70 some odd new and different recipes I’ve made for Bri and I over the past months, and I’m going to chronicle the crafty sewing projects I’m working on(just got my first Singer… sooo excited!) and I’m going to journal about my very different life out here on the west coast. Most importantly, I hope ya’ll will stop by from time to time to see what I’m up to.

Love, Candace