I have a three teens in my home and I am looking forward to this event. I plan to bring my son whom is about to be 16 and my daughter that is 13 along to listen in. Plus, who could beat winning some gas cards especially when it is almost summer and the gas always goes up this time of year. I got lucky with my oldest that’s almost 18 as he really does not want to drive. However, my 16 year old is all but ready to be a NASCAR driver. I think this little endeavor might help! If your coming to the Drive It Home event let me know in the comments that way I may have the chance to meet you.
Hey friends and local readers, if you live in the DFW area I’d love for you to join me at the Drive it Home Show, presented by the National Safety Council and Allstate Foundation, Thursday, May 23, If you have tween, teen, or are concerned about teen driving safety, it will be an informative (and entertaining!) event. Please feel free to share this post with anyone who might like to attend. Details are as follows:
What: Drive it Home Show, presented by the National Safety Council and Allstate Foundation
When: Thursday, May 23 from 7pm – 8:15pm
Where: Plano Courtyard Theater (1509 H Ave, Plano, TX 75074)
Price: FREE!; no tickets required
BONUS: You can enter in the sweepstakes at the event for a chance to win gas cards and a brand new car!
If you’d like to attend, click here to register and when checking in, let them know that Clever Girls Collective sent you. Hope to see you there!
You can follow along on Twitter at #DriveitHome #CGC
Disclosure: I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls Collective, and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.
On April 17th, a small town named West in Texas was rocked by a fertilizer plant explosion. 15 people lost their lives with almost 200 injured. Many of those that fell were firefighters that were first to the scene. It’s such a tragic event to hit this little Czech/Texan community. With more then $100 million in damage, my fellow bloggers and I decided to #BakeForWest to show our support in hopes to raise awareness for those to donate to help this great Czech/Texan town West, TX.
I live about two hours from West, TX. My sweet V and his parents are Czech. His parents came to Texas more then 25 years ago from the Czech Republic and they love it here. When I witnessed the tragedy on the news I knew I had to help somehow.
In West, Texas is a quaint little shop called the Czech Stop that are famous for their kolaches. It’s right off one of our main highways. The town is well known for its Czech culture and heritage In fact, the Czech Republic is donating monies to help with this community. It may not be much but it is nice of them to put forward an effort to help.
Today, I am using a recipe that V’s mom sent me a few years ago after she baked me this wonderful cake with fresh plums from the tree in her backyard. It is traditionally made with cherries or other fresh picked berries that grow wild in the Czech Republic. I looked everywhere for cherries but they are not in season here yet. I decided to settle on raspberries since they are a berry and one of V’s favorites. Here is my #BakeForWest recipe: Raspberry Bublanina (bubbly cake) in honor for those lost or injured in this horrible tragedy.
If you would like to donate to help those in West, TX you can donate here through the Pointwest bank.
Please take a moment and stop by to visit these other fantastic foodies for their wonderful Czech desserts for #BakeForWest
This plnena paprika polevka also know as stuffed pepper soup has been lurking in my folder for about two weeks now. I held off on it to finish the boards to photograph it on and once I finally photographed it I realized I left thick soup all along the edge and it looks horrible; well to me it looks horrible. The plan to remake the soup continued to be put off since the weather is considerably hot here for this time of year. It probably just best to go ahead and share it. If we end up with another cold and rainy day I can always remake the soup and get some gorgeous shots.
Czechs generally make stuffed bell peppers a bit different then Italians do. My other half and I figured that out the first time we decided to make stuffed peppers together. He is full blooded Czech and well I’m Italian with other heritage but more prone to the Italian as I was raised with that cuisine and values. Czech stuffed peppers are simmered on a stove with paprika, rice, and ground beef while Italian stuffed pepper are baked in the oven without paprika and a small amount of tomato sauce. This stuffed pepper soup is a rendition of Czech stuffed peppers turned inside out to make a soup. Love Czech stuffed peppers with dumplings also known as knedliky. We just had garlic bread at the time but it would have been nice to pair them with this soup.
The board turned out nice in the photograph. I am working on several others and thinking about a DIY post. Anyone that would be interested? The boards I am working on are going to be chalkboard, crackled, and stained. Most of them will be painted with basic cheap acrylic paints you can pick up at any hobby store. Hoping to get the rest of them cut tonight so I can work on them over the next few days. Also in some serious need for heavy poster board. Looks like another run to the Dollar Tree.
And now I am off to cut those boards… well make the other half do it while I eat fresh tortillas with salsa and butter. Guilty pleasure!
Today, I am happy to be a part of Food Bloggers Against Hunger and share with you a simple less then $4 recipe for roasted tomato rotini. Before I pass you on to the recipe I would like to share a story with you below.
Here is a bit more on Food Bloggers Against Hunger:
Food Bloggers Against Hunger was created by Nicole from The Giving Table in response to the new documentary, A Place at the Table. Today, April 8, 2013, food bloggers will donate their posts to raise awareness about the film, issues of hunger, and ask their readers to send letters to Congress to protect SNAP funding and make anti-hunger legislation a priority.
A Place at the Table premiered on March 1st, 2013. This documentary from Participant Media—the same studio that brought you Food Inc.—follows three families struggling with food insecurity, and sheds light on the very real problem of hunger in America.
Please refresh is video doesn’t pop up
My first child was born when I was 16, two weeks away from my 17th birthday. He was my perfect birthday gift. With plenty of help from my grandmother, I moved on to get my GED and got a decent job alternating schedules with my grandmother; so my son would never have to go to a daycare. I was a single mom.
Then a few months after giving birth to my son I met Mike. This brilliant full of life individual that I fell passionately in love with at first sight. Another few months pass and with great surprise I find out I am expecting my second child. Mike was immediately excited and got a job at a local ice cream joint. After the baby was born I went to work as a photographer. We eventually got our own apartment. We had two incomes but we still didn’t have enough to afford to pay for the food. We decided to go out and look for help, something that most people fear. We got SNAP which then was called Lone Star and we received WIC. Both programs helped with baby food and formula but still did not cover all food costs for the four of us.
At least we both had creative imaginations and a love for food. We shopped sparingly by buying in bulk such as: rice, pasta, and flour. We bought cheap packages of meat at the meat market, in which, we broke down in to small amounts to last the entire month. Ramen was a necessity in our home. The cheapest pasta you could buy and add a tad of chicken and small handful of spring onions creating a delicious dinner to us. We eventually made enough money to support ourselves.
In 2000, he passed away while I was pregnant with our daughter. I once again needed help with food. Only this time I learned how to make food stretch. That scrapes made great stocks and lemons, grapefruits, and orange peels were easy to make candy out of for the kids. Luckily, three years later I would meet another man, my V, that would step in to help me with the kids and to follow my dreams. The kids are all now beautiful teenagers and the middle one works in a restaurant. Not everyone can be this lucky. More then 50 million people are food insecure (no means to have a constant nutritious meal).
To this day I still make some of the recipes we created to save on food costs. Continuously buying bulk foods to stock in the pantry never knowing when we could end up with out money for food. Always playing it safe I bought a deep freeze and I over stock it just like my pantry. These are not bad practices to always make sure if you lose a job or become short on money that you will still have food to last; even in a natural disaster or power outage the food that is needed will be there.
So, how can YOU (and all of us) help?
- Find a screening of A Place at the Table in your city.
- Watch A Place at the Table on iTunes or Amazon.
- Tell Congress to change their priorities and fund Federal nutrition programs that are crucial for hungry children. (sign the petition in the previous link)
My recipe that will feed 5 people for under $4 total.
With March Madness in full swing it is time to get your game day recipes on! LG Do March Right is asking all of us to share our game day recipes for a chance to win a trip to Atlanta for two to the playoff games. You can enter to win on their Facebook page above. One of the game day recipes I make at home is my Slam Dunked Onion! Of course I shared it on the LG Do March Right Facebook page and your more then welcome to look for it in the recipes album and like away!
March Madness in my house generally consists of my son, Chancelor, watching the Boston Celtics as much as possible paired with quick fried recipes. Probably should implement some healthy recipes but it is our excuse to eat fried food
This recipe is a knock off of the famous fried onion recipes that grace many steak restaurants in our area. Generally, this is the appetizer before you have steak. Slam Dunked Onion is makes enough to go around for five people. We usually have a guest or two over and still have plenty. It’s my opener and then I serve up some brisket tacos with all the toppings.
What recipe would you submit as your #LGDoMarchRight game day recipe? Do you plan to enter to win the trip for two to the final four? Let me know what recipe you submitted in the comments so I can hop on over and have a look!
So far a few of the recipes look absolutely amazing! Monte Cristo Poppers, Muffuletta Bites, Dill Pickle Dip, and Jambalaya Stuffed Mushrooms. I will be watching along for these nifty ideas for #LGDoMarchRight March Madness game day recipes.
Here is the recipe for my Slam Dunked Onion. If you would like you can follow along on Twitter at #LGDoMarchRight. Here is my video on how to hand cut the onion to make it into the blossom.
This game-time recipe has been submitted for LG’s Do March Right Tip-Off Challenge.
My daughter and I decided for our #RedCarpetReady night in preparation for the Oscar’s tomorrow night that we would gladly enjoy some Wholly guacamole on our burgers while watching an old Oscar movie ‘Rocky’. It’s just a timeless classic. She invited her friend Jade to join us.
We dug in to the Wholly guacamole and topped it onto our burgers. She and her friend Jade tried the classic and I tried the spicy. Love the heat in that guacamole; definitely a good kick! My daughter’s friend, Jade, has never had a guacamole burger that she could remember and thoroughly enjoyed it. We sided the burgers with chips and Wholly salsa. The Red Pepper Mango is super sweet and not necessarily my favorite. I enjoyed the traditional version of the salsa. The girls loved the Avocado and Spicy Pico salsa.
Now it’s after the movie and we are about to head up and paint my daughter’s room turquoise. Immediately after I plan on having a Daily’s Cocktail in strawberry daiquiri flavor. Love these! They are super inexpensive and easy to just pop into the freezer. Especially on a night where the whole house is on the go they are the perfect end. I might have to save me some extra for Oscar night when the awesome Twitter chat is on going. If you would like to join in follow and tweet to @dailyscocktails and @eatwholly on Twitter using the hashtag #redcarpetready!
Pictures will follow tomorrow morning!
What’s even better is I am giving one of you a chance to win:
• Four Wholly Guacamole and three Wholly Salsa products in a variety of yummy flavors. It will be hard to pick a favorite!
• A $20 Walmart gift card to pick up an assortment of Daily’s Cocktails Pouches (plus whatever you need for your recipe). The recent addition of three new light flavors (Light Pink Lemonade, Light Mango Passion Fruit Daiquiri and Light Margarita) make a total of 13 tempting flavors to choose from!
• Promotional items from both Daily’s and Wholly Guacamole
• Your very own red carpet!
To enter just use the Rafflecopter below! Don’t forget to comment the blog as your first entry to tell me “Which Wholly guacamole do you enjoy and how you would share a Daily’s cocktail?”
*Disclosure: Wholly and Daily’s Cocktails is providing one winner with a cooler gift pack (stuff listed above). I was not reimbursed for writing this post and all opinions expressed here are my own.
This is my review for Hip Hop Dance Experience Wii review.
My daughter, Menya, is the main Wii player in the house. Guess that means she’s the one that likes to move it! (Madagascar pun totally intended) When her friends come over they are always playing the Wii. It is very common to hear what sounds like a herd of elephants upstairs and loud music. I have since implemented them playing the Wii downstairs where I am comfortably an ear shot away.
My daughter proceeded to go through every song checking out especially the ones she knows. She’s a hip hop fan and said only hip hop fans would like Hip Hop Dance Experience game. The dance moves are a bit more difficult then other such dance games on the Wii. It will take more time and focus to get the moves down. There just not easy to reenact Which would be the reason why I think this game is rated teen not only for the inappropriate songs but the difficultly of the moves.
I would not suggest this game for teens. I would suggest this game for adults. It would be great at party where you serve up a few daiquiri’s for everyone to enjoy, loosen up, and dance their tales off. Not too much to drink though as I said before the moves are not the easiest around. It would be nice to see more on screen hints. If your a dancer you’ll love this game.
My daughter and her friend loved the front and back views but at first they were confused if it was two people or one. Over all it’s a fun game but lacked on level of easiness for the player. I’d give it 4 stars!
Before I tell you how to win the Calphalon digital convection oven you must first read all about my strawberry banana french toast I baked up in my very own Calphalon digital convection oven that they so sweetly sent me.
For years I bugged the other half to buy me a convection oven to use endlessly for easy dinners. What I LOVE about this convection oven is the size. It fits a small pizza or a 9×13 cookies sheet. Yes, you can bake cookies in it in the summer without heating up the entire house. How brilliant is that in Texas’ super hot summer heat!
The oven is perfect for teenagers that have light cooking skills. On more then four occasions now my teenagers have used it to make their dinners while the other half and I headed out for date night. They love it too! The convection oven has custom time and temperature settings for bagels, pizza and cookies. The pull out crumb tray makes it a breeze to clean. It takes reading the manual and playing with the settings to get use to and remember how to work it. I already have it aced though!
Below the recipe is the giveaway but first here is a look at one of the easy make head or do the day of breakfast recipes we baked up in the digital convection oven.
Please follow the instructions on the Rafflecopter below in order to enter to win the Calphalon digital convection oven. It is mandatory that you comment the blog in order to be entered to win! Don’t forget that you can tweet about the giveaway daily through the Rafflecopter for extra daily entries! If you share it on Pinterest let me know in the comments for another extra entry.
*Disclosure: Calphalon is providing one winner with a digital convection oven. I was not reimbursed for writing this post and all opinions expressed here are my own.
Next week we are heading into Part 1 of 2 episodes in the Top Chef Seattle season finale. The strangest thing is all I can think about is Last Chance Kitchen. Who won between Lizzie and Kristen?
Kristen is an extremely creative chef and won a few rounds against some amazing chefs such as Stefan. However, Lizzie has a style of cooking that reminds you of home and Europe all in one. Her spaetzle looked amazing! The winner between the two will compete with Sheldon and Brooke in the final competition. Who do you think won Last Chance Kitchen?
Content and/or other value provided by our partner, Bravo.
From the previews for Part 1 of the season finale it doesn’t look good for Brooke. Tom is consistently asking Brooke to plate the dishes and she’s having trouble getting on board. Tom is expediting for Brooke and Sheldon at the Craft, which is Tom Colicchio’s restaurant, in Los Angeles. This seems to only make the competition tough as Tom is breathing down both their necks to make the perfect dish.
Another preview shows us Brooke and Sheldon cooking for their families. Brooke’s son mentions the bagels are nasty. Kind of funny as my kids will be the first to throw me under the bus with my cooking. I think it has to do with all the new things I make them try when I am trying to perfect them. They are my guinea pigs. Also, they eat so much of my cooking it has to get old.
Sheldon is making a slab of ribs I would love to sink my teeth into. Grilled food is one genre of food I truly enjoy!
Brooke is a talent chef! See marries food well. I would just like to see the underdog make it through to the top. Sheldon has no proper schooling and has worked his way from the bottom to get into the competition. I think that screams something unique. Even one of my favorite dishes so far features a dish created by Bart Vandaele and Sheldon Simeon Green Forest Breakfast Sandwich: Eggs, Cheese, Pancetta, Bacon & Spinach. This is something I could have on a stick for breakfast every morning. The only thing I might add is some syrup or salsa.
Who do you think is going to pull it off in the finale to win Top Chef Seattle? My verdict is Sheldon but if Lizzie comes back in that might be a big toss up. Kristen just dominates and I am not sure if I would like to see her in the finale.
Three of most memorable moments for me in this season is Sheldon and his pine needles, Josh and the birth of baby Georgia, and Brooke’s fear of flying in a helicopter. While I share that same fear I would never let anyone film my freak out! She’s a trooper!
Don’t miss Part 1 of the finale this week on Wednesday or the finale on Wednesday, February 27 @ 10/9c!
Disclosure: I am a Bravo-sponsored blogger. All opinions are my own.
This is my recap in Top Chef Season 10 Episode 14 Kings of Alaska.
I have to say I was disappointed to see Stefan go as he was growing on me after Bart left. I would seriously eat at either of their places as I find their food enticing. With that being said, crunchy pork is normal and the judges need to know that. If they are going to judge cuisine then maybe we need a judge with a European stand point through out the whole season.
The quick fire included for the four chefs needed to whip up a perfectly cooked crab recipe. Brook’s was very simple. Josh went very southern with a crab succotash which did not impress since he was cooking succotash for a succotash snob. Sheldon decided on a miso soup with pine needles which I thought was very creative. Lizzie made a crab frittata which looked wonderful but in the end was said to be overcooked. Everyone is picky about eggs though and the way they like them cooked.
For the elimination challenge, each chef had to whip up some sourdough and make use of salmon. Here is a list below of the dishes that were created.
Sockeye Salmon & Seafood Broth with Mustard Seed Caviar & Dill Sourdough by Brooke Williamson
Citrus & Beet Glazed Salmon Slider with Poppy Seed Butter & Pickles by Elizabeth Binder
Roasted Garlic Sourdough Soup with Sockeye Salmon & Black Olive Croutons by Joshua Valentine
Green Tea & Chive Sourdough with Smoked Salmon & Pea Soup by Sheldon Simeon
To be honest, I think Lizzie’s is something I would serve at home with friends at a BBQ and sounds absolutely delicious! The roasted garlic soup Josh whipped up was knocked down on the amount of garlic. I LOVE garlic so the more the merrier. I also loved how he worked the bread into the croutons which is not a familiar thing in the south to put croutons in your soup. Smoked salmon and pea soup sounds like a wonderful winter meal though I think it might have been poorly executed. Over all I think I would have picked Josh or Lizzie in this elimination not whom the judges picked. Guess you will have to watch the show to find out who was eliminated. If you watched it let me know who you thought should have won.
Here is the episode guide. Don’t forget to catch up before next weeks season finale!
Disclosure: I am a Bravo-sponsored blogger. All opinions are my own.