Salmon Tacos with Ricotta and Avocado Cream

P1000595 copyLast week Tim and I had the most delicious meal. He made blackened salmon and I made a cream that perfectly complimented the flavors of the fish. We put it in a flour tortilla with a little cilantro and then we ate every bite because it was so good. This will definitely be a frequent summertime supper at our house. It was so quick and easy.

The cream was a result of last minute thinking and whatever we had in the fridge and holy cow it was yum. I was originally going to make creme fraiche but I’d never made it before and didn’t realize that it needed a million (12-16) hours to set and I only had 30 minutes. Oops! The recipe makes about 6 tacos so this was two meals for both of us.

Here is the recipe!

Makes six tacos

Ingredients: 

4 fillets of Wild caught salmon

Blackened cajun seasoning (we used whole foods brand)

1 TB raw butter, grass-fed butter or coconut oil

6 flour tortillas

Cilantro

For the cream: 

1 avocado peeled and cubed

1/2 cup of ricotta cheese

1 TB of cilantro

1 TB lemon juice

Instructions:

Sprinkle the salmon with blackened cajun seasoning. Cook salmon in the butter or oil in a preheated skillet on medium high heat for about 6 minutes on each side.

While the salmon is cooking, put the ingredients for the cream into a food processor and blend until creamy.

Place salmon in a warm tortilla with a dollop of the cream, or two, and sprinkle with fresh cilantro.

Tim warmed the tortillas by putting a little more butter in the skillet and frying on both sides for a minute. This was delicious because they were a little crunchy but he has an awesome metabolism and I don’t so there’s that.

Let me know if you make this! You won’t be sorry.

Di

 

 

 

Coconut Oil and Butter in my coffee?

I’m currently drinking one of the best cups of coffee I’ve ever had. Seriously. It has totally made my morning even better! And what did I do? I added 1 tablespoon of coconut oil, 1 teaspoon of raw butter and 1/4 teaspoon of vanilla! I poured two cups of brewed coffee into my blendtec blender and added all of the other ingredients and blended on high for 20 seconds. Voila! Best. Morning. Ever.

I got the recipe here: http://wellnessmama.com/5673/the-only-way-i-drink-coffee/

You should definitely try it.

XOXO,

Di

Mint Iced Tea Recipe!

In honor of the first day of April and the beautiful weather and sunshine, I decided to share a refreshing favorite of mine and it’s so easy to make! I like to brew up this tea whenever I have a craving for Coke. It’s just a little sweet, a little minty and a lot delicious. 🙂

This is all you need:

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8 Black tea bags

1  Spearmint tea bag, or two! You can also use peppermint tea but spearmint is more subtle and refreshing if you ask me.

I use Plantation Mint

And then a little something sweet. I used a tablespoon of raw honey. But stevia is good too. Or add sugar if you’re feeling a little crazy. It’s your life.

Start by bringing two cups of water to a rapid boil in a small saucepan.

Remove from heat.

Add all of the the tea bags.

Let steep for 5-6 minutes.

Remove tea bags and pour tea into a large glass container.

Add sweetener of your choice while it’s still hot.

Then add 6 more cups of water (room temperature is best) and allow to cool.
Pour it over some ice and grab a cute straw and you’ll forget that coke even exists.

And you’ll forget that winter was just a few weeks ago.

What are some of your favorite summer refreshers?

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XOXO,

Di

 

 

Cookin’ Ain’t Easy

I had a crazy expectation when I got married. I expected that I would find delicious recipes and cook these amazing meals and my husband would love every bite.

Expectations are always setting me up for disappointment.

Why, you ask? It’s not because I’m a bad cook. I mean sure I’ve tried a few new recipes that have failed but I know my way around a kitchen.

Tim is an incredibly healthy eater. I like to be blissfully ignorant about the diet coke and sugar free creamer I drink. We are total opposites in the grocery store aisles.

Tim can eat a raw cucumber for breakfast and think it’s the most delicious meal he’s ever had while I feel like I need a bowl of cereal, a banana, and two cups of coffee to get me through the morning.

This has become such a struggle for me because I never know what to cook for him.

I guess the struggle is that unhealthy habits are hard to break. Tim has read so many books, articles, nutrition labels and really has a grasp on what he should and shouldn’t be putting into his body. While my only guidelines are to not eat a lot of bread or drink pop.

The harsh reality is that we live in a world where the food industry doesn’t have our best interests at heart. Drinks and foods with artificial sweetener (aspartame) becomes formaldehyde when it’s processed in our bodies. This information has honestly stopped me from drinking the amount of coke zero I used to drink. I’m not a doctor and I’m not passionate enough about this to write a three page rant and make everyone stop reading my blog with one post. But my husband is. And he’s smart. And he’s really healthy. And always has a ton of energy and is always happy. I think there’s something to that.

Also, have you read about cows milk lately? If not, you should. The words ‘pus’ and ‘cows blood’ might stand out.

Listen, the purpose of this blog post isn’t to ruffle any feathers. I’m just your everyday, gluten-loving, sugar-eating, don’t-care-if-it’s-organic gal. But I have started a journey of educating myself and being more aware of the chemicals I’m eating. I’m starting to transition into a lifestyle change of eating better. I’ll let you know what changes I see.

What are some shocking things you’ve learned about food?

Carrots and Cucumbers,

Di

 

 

Homemade Chicken Caesar Salad

Okay so I am enjoying the most delicious lunch today! Chicken Caesar salad! I’m literally eating while I write this I can’t hear my own thoughts because I’m chewing on a crouton.

Last weekend we went to dinner at the Cheesecake Factory with some wonderful friends and Tim and I split the Chicken Caesar salad. It was delicious and amazing and I’ve been wanting it for dinner again all week. So I took matters into my own hands and went to see if The Pioneer Woman had a caesar salad recipe, she did. That’s always the first step in my kitchen, making sure whatever I’m cooking has a Pioneer Woman recipe. Anyway, I found her recipe and immediately got to work making croutons. So easy and delicious. Then I followed her recipe for caesar dressing and was so relieved when I realized I didn’t have to touch anchovies. I’m okay with the idea of them being in the dressing on a salad that I order. I just don’t think I can stomach the process of putting them in my dressing at home. Okay enough about that. I basically followed her recipe step by step except for the whole romaine leaves. I chopped mine up and tossed it in the dressing and a little olive oil. That way I could have some today too. I also made some chicken and it was super easy. I just used the same pan that I cooked the croutons in, splashed in little olive oil and tossed in the chicken on medium heat. I sprinkled a little Lawrys seasoned salt on both sides and cooked the chicken breasts for about 15 minutes. Then sliced it up and put it on the salad!

I’m terrified of killing my husband with undercooked chicken so I usually overcook it and it’s gross, but not last night! It turned out great. And no one died.

This meal was so easy and so delicious. I absolutely love the dressing and the homemade croutons. Tim said they were the best croutons he ever had. I agreed! Thanks Pioneer Woman!
20140306-112358.jpg#TBT because I just ate that whole thing while I wrote this.

K love you bye!

Christmas Cookies!

My mom LOVES Christmas. She always did the best job at making this time of the year so special for us. One of my favorite things she did with us was baking sugar cookies! We’d get out the amazing metal cookie cutters and cover the kitchen table in flour, then we’d roll out the dough with Grandma’s glass rolling pin and the fun would begin! (The stars were my favorite so we always ended up with lots of those.) Then mom would whip up her incredible buttercream frosting in red and green and we’d try not to eat every single cookie we decorated. She stored them in the fridge which was my favorite part because it think they’re the best when they’re cold.

It always seems like I run out of time and I have to skip the baking part of the Christmas season but this year I refused to skip it, so we baked them on Wednesday and I stayed up super late Thursday after a Christmas party decorating them. I used royal icing because I knew some cookies would have to travel. I was looking for sugar cookie recipes and came across the pioneer woman’s sugar cookie post. She’s my hero so if she has or suggests a recipe for something I want to make, I go with it every time. Here’s what I used:

almond sugar cookies

royal icing

I used a piping bag and outlined the cookies with icing then thinned it out a bit and spread it on the rest of the cookie. Decorating is my favorite part!!

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They turned out beautifully and were a real crowd pleaser! I loved the hint of almond in the sugar cookie dough.

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Paint Horses and Cupcakes

Saturdays are my favorite days. I get up early to meet my friends Chance (the paint horse) and Laura (my riding teacher) for my barrel racing lesson. Then, as if it couldn’t get any better, I pick up my BFF Bella for our weekly adventure to the donut palace where she fills me in on all of the first grade happenings over chocolate milk and sprinkle donuts..it’s the best. Then I usually go home and take a nap, but this past saturday I baked some cupcakes instead! And it was fun! My gal Tanielle (We call Danielle ‘Tanielle’ after spring break 2008, which was later shortened to ‘Tans’, because who has the time to say every syllable in life?) well anyway, she turned 25 last week so we were going to be celebrating her birthday and what’s a bday party without cake!?

Strawberry and Chocolate Mint, both with marshmallow fluff buttercream frosting.  YUM.  Now I know what you’re all thinking..how did you get the mint flavor Ms. Key Ingredient? Well world. I’ll tell you. It wasn’t easy. Just kidding. I chopped up Andes mints and folded them into the batter, and they melted while they were baking, and when they came out of the oven the flavor was so minty and so chocolatey all at the same time! Wham Bam. Happy Birthday Tans.

Also, here are some better shots of the wedding cake mom and I made this summer. Thanks Brittany Wood Photography!!

Here is the cake…

The cake and I…I just had to get a picture with the cake in the barn. 

So that’s all.

Di.

cake pops and cupcakes.

Well, it’s official. I am the worst blogger ever. I mean can I even consider myself a blogger? I think I have to blog at least 10 times a year to be an official blogger. Well, tonight is the night for my spring 2011 post. I just really feel inspired. Nothing makes me want to write more than the threat of a “rain-wrapped” tornado that I keep hearing about on the news. What is a “rain-wrapped” tornado anyway?

Anywho. I made cake pops this past weekend for the bake sale at church and they didn’t turn out too bad. I won’t post a picture because I only took an instagram and it will just make my designer friends upset that I even bothered to put up a picture that I took with my iPhone. But I made some. And they were cute. I put pink sprinkles on them and tied little yellow bows around them.

I also made some cupcakes for our Easter supper on Sunday. They are hummingbird cake with cream cheese frosting. While I was baking them, I felt like I was on one of those cupcake challenge shows where the people are racing against the clock and their challenge is to make like 8 different flavors of cupcakes and build a crazy display for the cupcakes. The only difference for me was that my challenge was baking while dancing to Mary Mary and getting ready to go to dinner with friends. Now for those of you who aren’t familiar with hummingbird cake, you had better get that recipe and get to bakin’. In my quest to be a southern belle, I feel like these little cupcakes gave me like 150 southern points on my southern belle scorecard.

(Photo Cred Brittany Wood)

Speaking of southern belles, Country Strong is FINALLY on dvd. AND Friday Night Lights has begun. PTL. April is the best month ever. (Segues are clearly my strong suit)

Okay well I better go and figure out where my “tornado safe place” is in this old house. Pretty sure we don’t have one but I’m gonna need to tell my nana that I thought through my emergency storm plan.

XOXO

Baking.

Guess what I’m doing right now…

I’m baking a cake of course!  It’s for my cousins Brittany and Sam.  The happy couple have very close January birthdays and so we celebrate them together 🙂  For their cake, I am going to make some sweet buttercream frosting and slice up some fresh strawberries put them in the middle.  Simple and YUM.  And it smells sooo good!  I’ll show you the finished product once it’s frosted.  OH and don’t tell them, I want it to be a surprise!

The timer is beeping!  Gotta go!

Di

Cakeventure.

So lately I just haven’t been able to find the time to blog about my recent cakeventure…cake+adventure=cakeventure.  I mean between all of my travels/reading/netflixing/working/reading other blogs etc. when’s a girl gonna find the time?

First things first, HAPPY FALL.  It’s here people.  The leaves are on the ground, the house smells like christmas, and I dug my flannel jammies out from the bottom of my dresser drawer.  So put away your bathing suit and your weird romper thingy, it’s time for apple cider and bonfires.  Oh and camping.  I love camping.

Second order of business…a couple of my new favorite things…

 

The Hunger Games…this is the first book of the trilogy…I’m on the 3rd book now.  It’s so good!  I can’t put it down.  So what if my little 14 year old brother saw this audiobook on my iphone and said “Oh, I love The Hunger Games!’. It’s true…the more books I read, the more I realize that I am in fact on the same reading level as the 14 year olds.

 

 

 

 

Friday Night Lights.  My new favorite show.  I’m on season four…it’s getting really good and Tim Riggins is really handsome.

 

 

 

So, other than reading childrens books and watching a show about high school drama, I do in fact make time for more productive things.

Presenting..my very first wedding cake…

Ta-Daaa!  I made this cake for some friends of mine who had the most incredible rooftop wedding in downtown Nashville last month.  The top layer was a butter cake with mocha frosting, the tall middle layer was chocolate on chocolate with mini chocolate chips and the bottom layer was butter cake with buttercream frosting and fresh strawberries between each layer…my favorite.  Of course it was covered in fondant and there is a ribbon around the bottom of each layer..which is kind of hard to see thanks to my silly little camera.  The wedding was amazing!..beautiful ceremony, great friends, fun dancing, and plus I caught the bouquet!  UhOh!

Now I know what you’re probably thinking…how did she get it to the venue??  The answer…

Well, my best friend Chelsea Jo and I assembled it at the venue.  But before we took off, I stuck this magnet on the back of my car.  It was really very funny…people honked and waved and I’d like to think that they drove a little more carefully through the streets of Nashville thanks to me and my magnet.  Now that is what I call a CAKEVENTURE folks.  Sometimes I just stick it on my car now even though I’m not delivering cakes..it’s fun and it says that I demand respect.

Sincerely yours forever,

Di