Whenever the hubby is out of town, quick & easy is the name of the game when it comes to fixing dinners for myself. Since I had a huge bunch of zucchini sitting on the counter and no one but my little self to feed, that’s pretty much what I had three out of four nights last week.
After perusing recipes for about ten minutes, my stomach’s growling definitely put in a vote for something without a lot of prep work. I couldn’t find anything that seemed to satisfy the bill so I ended up throwing this together out of desperation.
Not really knowing the end from the beginning, I just sliced up the zucchinis and started sprinkling on whatever tickled my fancy from the cupboard. They ended up turning out really delicious and I ended up using what I thought would be a “side” for my main dish. The spears came out slightly crispy on the outside but still soft inside which was great since I wasn’t really going for a “french fry” effect. The seasoning is simple but complimented the squash well. Well enough that I decided it was a recipe worth adding to my cookbook and sharing with the hubby when he gets back in town.
Simple. Quick. Delicious.
Yep, that’s a recipe that belongs in my house.
In our little apartment we have two skylights. I absolutely love skylights. Someday I’d like them in my kitchen. But that’s definitely a dream for some day in the distant future. In the meantime though, I’ll be satisfied with the two little ones we have in our studio. And at the moment, I’m immensely enjoying the sound of a light, persistent rain hitting those windows. I love that sound. But rather than go on about my love for rainy days, I have some exciting news to share…
We’re buying a house!! I am so excited I can hardly stand it! It’s our first home so of course we are pretty dang stoked about the whole thing. And you know what I’m really excited for? A bedroom door! I know sounds strange, but you must understand… we have been living in a studio apartment for the past year and a half and it has been the most amazing blessing to be able to save up money and bond together in this little matchbox 😉 but I’m going to be absolutely tickled to not see my kitchen sink from my bed. And actually have a kitchen. With more than three cupboards and 21 inches of countertop space. And no carpet! Yes, our “kitchen” is carpeted. Do you know what it’s like operating a kitchen under the stress of trying not to let any little thing drip on the floor because you’ll be stuck with the ominous task of scrubbing it out for hours?? Let me tell you, a real kitchen is going to be Ah-mazing.
Of course, it needs a little updating. But that’s part of what I’m so excited for. We get to personalize it and fix it up to our liking! I feel a bunch of home improvement projects coming on which doesn’t scare me in the least. I grew up with that sort of thing since my father is a general contractor (the best one you’ll ever find) and one of the many things he taught me was how to be handy with a screw driver. Yes, I know what a philips head is and I know what a pain it is when a bolt get’s “stripped”. I also know that primer is key and under no circumstances should you remove tile without heavy-duty gloves (a lesson I learned the hard way and have scars to prove it).
We close and move in less than a month and I am counting down the hours til I have a bedroom door. And a garage. And a yard. And no carpet in my kitchen!!!
And to celebrate that glorious announcement, I’d to share with you these absolutely scrumptious Oatmeal Butter Pecan Cupcakes I made this holiday weekend. They aren’t exactly “festive” in the sense that they aren’t red, white, or blue, and no little patriotic flags poking out of the frosting but, they’re insanely delicious and what’s more American than a mouthwatering cupcake? See? Totally festive.
I had beautiful plans for a buttercream frosting but fate wasn’t on my side and it was a bit of a flop so I rushed to the store and bought a can of Duncan Hines new whipped cream cheese frosting. I’m actually really glad my frosting didn’t pan out the way I thought it would because if it had I might never have found this new creation! The frosting was light and airy, not too sweet which is usually a huge problem for me with store bought frostings. This one went perfectly with my cupcakes and I will definitely be using it many more times in my baking adventures.
These cupcakes turned out better than I had imagined in my head. The aroma alone was enough to make my mouth water. And just look at them. So moist and beautiful. Ah. Go make some. Please. You will be glad you did. Happy Memorial Day!
PS. I just love zebra print anything. I can’t get enough.
If you wish, you may opt to garnish the tops of these beautiful cupcakes with chopped pecans!
I’m feeling very under the weather today. A pounding headache the size of Texas, a runny nose, sneezing constantly. . . pretty miserable really.
Needless to say, real cooking is not in the cards for me today. Is it bad to have cereal for all three meals? Because that seems to be the extent of my menu. And this smoothie.
And I could actually taste it! My cereal tasted like nothing at all. Which was really disappointing since I dearly adore my cereal. But this smoothie was a perfect pick me up. And look at that color. Gorgeous.
There’s just something about a churro that screams CARNIVAL to me. When I was growing up, the carnival would come to our town once a year in the summer time and I still remember the first churro I had there. My mother bought a churro for me and two and my brothers to share for fifty cents. (I’m pretty sure the most recent churro I had set me back four dollars, talk about inflation huh??)
I also remember making my brothers ride the Tilt-a-Whirl with me three or four times in a row right after that churro. They didn’t have the solid stomach I have I guess because they both fought over the nearest open garbage can immediately afterwards. I don’t know if they have the same happy memories of our churro that I do. But for me it was wonderful, and that cinnamon-sugar combo became iconic for me. When my mother made me toast for breakfast with cinnamon and sugar sprinkled on top, it became Churro Toast.
When I made this popcorn I had that carnival churro in mind. The flavor combo was delicious and after a little tweaking with the ingredients, I achieved that perfect chewy-firm texture you get with a real churro. I’m hooked, this Churro Caramel Corn is sooo addicting. If you like churros, do yourself a favor and make a batch of this, pronto.
Ah, I’m finally over the worst of that nasty head cold I caught last week. And I can officially taste my food again. Which is making this monday feel more like a tuesday, very much less daunting.
A few things I’m thinking about today:
How sweet my mother is- she gave me the most heartfelt and thoughtful note this weekend for no real reason at all and it made my day.
Tylenol and the many bonding experiences we’ve had together.
Darius Rucker’s song “Wagon Wheel”. It’s stuck in my head and I’m 100% okay with that.
Cantaloupe and this Tex Mex Quinoa Bowl I’m having for lunch. So easy, so delicious. And a great way to use up leftover mexican ingredients in the fridge from the weekend. I’m loving having a bowl of quinoa already cooked and waiting in the fridge for the week so I can just grab some and add it to any dish in a hurry. And of course there’s that added bonus that it’s super super healthy and good for you. Lots of protein. Which is much needed after a brutal 40 minute sweat session at the gym this morning.
Just look at those beautiful peppers. Mmmmm….
Thanks to Katie at Healthy Diva Eats for hosting Marvelous In My Monday!