Returned in Full-Force

My mom used to make fish for dinner several times a week when I was growing up.

I went through a phase when I was so sick of fish in high school. Of course I made what my mom prepared, but I would cringe when I found out fish was on the dinner menu.

Fast forward to college and when I would come home to visit, all I wanted was a homecooked meal that included fish.

Maybe my craving stremmed from the fact that I didn’t eat fish away from home since I had a meal plan in college and didn’t really trust the fish prepared on campus. Or maybe I now wanted fish because we moved to Florida and the fish we ate was super fresh and often caught earlier that day during one of my dad’s spearfishing trips. Either way, my love for fish retured in full-force.

These days I don’t make fish all that often because it can be pricey, but when I saw beautiful filets of trout on sale at the grocery store yesterday, I had to pick some up.

Trout

Fish is not only delicious and nutritious, but it’s also easy to prepare, which may be what I like most about it!

I prepped the trout by sprinkling a seasoning of Nature’s Place lemon, basil and thyme that Ryan’s mom gave to me after I complimented a dish she made that used the yummy spices.

Spice Things Up

This flavor combo is perfect for poultry, red meat or fish. Gotta love the versitility!

To cook the fish, I placed it on a baking sheet lined with foil and sprayed with cooking spray and broiled it for approximately 10 minutes, until it flaked with a fork.

Fishy Fishy

Ready for Eatin'

Along with the fish, I enjoyed a mixture of lentils with sauted onions and carrots.

Lentils, Carrots, Onions

Dinner!

I went back for another small piece of fish because it was so delicious!

I really need to start integrating fish into my diet more regularly. It’s too good to continue to ignore.

  • Do you like fish?
  • How often do you eat fish?

Jump Start

You guys posted so many fabulous lookin’ recipes last night that I just couldn’t resist making one tonight! 😀

Sophie from Yumventures, posted a recipe for the most amazing-looking sweet potato hash with poached eggs, and when I realized I had nearly every ingredient already on hand, I knew I just had to make this recipe tonight!

Consider this meal a “jump start” on the Reader’s Recipe fun!

I made a couple of changes to her recipe because I’m not very good with spicy food (so no jalepeños in my re-creation), but for the most part, I followed her recipe exactly.

While boiling the sweet potatoes for the sweet potato hash, I sauteed the onion and pepper until they were tender.

Sizzlin'

I combined half of the sweet potatoes with the onion and pepper mixture, while mashing the other half of the sweet ‘taters with plain Greek yogurt (I didn’t have sour cream) and a little bit of sugar (I didn’t have agave nectar).

Potatoes + Veggies

Mashed Up

Once the mixture and spices were all combined, I formed the mixture into patties and tried them up until they were brown and slightly crispy.

Sweet Potato Hash Patties

I topped the sweet potato hash patties with a dippy egg and dug in.

Dinner is Served

Oh WOW this recipe is delicious. Thank you, Sophie!!!

Sweet Potato Hash with Poached Eggs (recipe from Sophie, aka Yumventures)

Ingredients:

  • 2 sweet potatoes, diced in ~1/2 inch cubes
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 green pepper, diced (I used a red pepper)
  • 1 jalapeno, diced (I omitted this)
  • 1/4 cup light sour cream (I used plain Greek yogurt)
  • 2 teaspoons agave nectar (I used sugar)
  • Cilantro
  • Salt, pepper, and garlic powder
  • Poached egg (Mine was dippy)

Directions:

Boil the diced sweet potatoes until fork tender. Drain.

While potatoes are boiling, sautee onion, green pepper, and jalapeno until cooked.

Add half of the sweet potatoes to the onion-pepper mixture. Mash the other half with the sour cream and agave nectar, then add to the rest of the ingredients.

Mix all of the ingredients together, along with the salt, pepper, and garlic powder, mushing the whole cubes of potatoes as well, until everything is well combined. Scoop out into a bowl. Form patties out of the mixture and pan fry until they become brown and crispy on the outside.

Top the sweet potato hash cakes with a poached egg.

Reader’s Recipe Selection

After looking at every single recipe and clicking every single link, Ryan and I decided we’ll be making Kelly’s Rosemary Chicken and Zucchini. (I wouldn’t be surprised if we make more than one of the recipes you guys submitted!)

Watch for this recipe to pop up on the blog within the next week. When I post about this recipe, you can comment with additional recipes (or the same recipe you already submitted!) that you think I should try the next week.

I’m already feeling more creative! You guys sure know how to get a girl out of the “cooking the same meals” slump!

Oh, and by the way, it’s FRIDAY tomorrow!!!

Rainy Day Dinner

Is is just me or do rainy days make you want a warm dinner that makes your whole house smell fantastic?

With the chilly, rainy weather outside, Ryan and I decided to make a hot, aromatic dinner of Italian sausage with peppers and onions.

Sausage, Peppers and Onions

Our friends Pete and Merri made this dish at their Super Bowl party this year and Ryan and I loved it.

Thankfully Pete shared his recipe with me today and I was pleased to see that it was super easy. You know I love simple recipes!

All you have to do is cut Italian sausages with scissors (do not use a knife or the meat will come out of the casings) and put the meat into a 2-inch baking dish (sprayed with cooking spray) with sliced onions and peppers. You can then top it all with olive oil, salt and pepper or omit all the spices since the Italian sausage is very flavorful on its own. Easy, right?

We let the sausage and peppers bake at 375 degrees for about 45 minutes, stirring the mixture every once in a while.

Yummy

Our apartment smelled like heaven!

I enjoyed my sausage and veggie mix on a big piece of Joseph’s lavash bread.

Dinner

For dessert I enjoyed a chocolate mint Attune bar. I received a package of these in the mail from the company today and was excited to try the bars. 

Mint Chocolate Attune Bar

Mint Chocolate

It was so stinkin’ delicious! I gave Ryan a bite too and he agreed. 

I’ll do a full review on the bars once I try the various flavors. 🙂

Off to keep warm by cuddlin’ on the couch watching Friends on DVD with Ryan. Good night!

Homemade Butternut Squash Soup

I am so proud of myself! This was my very first attempt at making any kind of soup other than chicken veggie soup without a recipe to follow as a guideline.

And… drum roll please… it turned out great!

Tonight I made homemade butternut squash soup. Not only was it so easy, but it was delicious, too!

Butternut Squash Soup

I wanted to use the mashed butternut squash I baked last week because I was afraid it would go bad if it sat in my fridge too much longer so I figured tonight was a good night to attempt butternut squash soup!

I started by dumping half of a bag of baby carrots and half of an onion into the food processor.

Carrots and Onions

I processed the veggies until they were almost smooth.

All Whirred Up

I then put the butternut squash flesh in the food processor to blend it until it was free of any lumps.

Blended Butternut

I sprayed a pot with cooking spray before dumping the carrot and onion mixture into the pot and letting it sizzle for 3 – 5 minutes. I then added the butternut squash and stirred the mix regularly for about 3 minutes.

Thick Veggies

After adding 2.5 cups of chicken broth, the mixture became more soupy. I let it simmer on low for about 10 minutes so all the flavors would come out to enhance the soup.

When it was done and Ryan and I both enjoyed every last slurp of this soup!

Yummy

Hooray for a successful first attempt at butternut squash soup!

I’m off to girl’s holiday movie night! Enjoy your Monday night everyone. 🙂

Acorn Squash Salad

Is a salad a salad without lettuce or leaves? I’m thinking yes because there’s chicken salad, tuna salad, fruit salad… all without lettuce.

Therefore my lunch today merits the term “salad.” 🙂

The base of my salad was a roasted acorn squash. Last night as I was makin’ pasta for dinner, I let the squash roast at 350 degrees face down on a cookie sheet sprayed with cooking spray for approximately 30 minutes.

acorn squash

Roasted Acorn Squash

I then cut a grid into the flesh and scooped out cubes of the squash.

I topped my squash with sauteed onions, portobello mushrooms, yellow squash and creamy goat cheese.

acorn squash salad

Acorn Squash Salad Topped with Goat Cheese

acorn squash salad 2

Thursday's Lunch

I also added a big ol’ scoop of cranberry relish to this mix to round out my meal.

acorn squash salad with cranberry

Squash Salad with Cranberry Relish

I love leaf-less salads!

What’s your favorite kind of salad?

Onion Overload

Onions are delicious and add so much flavor to any dish that needs a little oomph. Case in point: a boring turkey sandwich.

Throw in an onion bagel and some sauteed red onions and your boring lunch staple is transformed!

onion turkey bagel

Turkey on an Onion Bagel

Today’s lunch was a simple turkey bagel sandwich prepared on a fresh Alternative Bagel onion bagel with red onion, feta cheese, spinach, plum tomato and dijon mustard.

bagel

Holy Turkey!

Simple, easy, delicious.

Gemma Ward Quits Modeling Amid Weight Criticism

The latest news on the fashion front? Gemma Ward, the beautiful healthy-looking 22-year-old Australian supermodel, decided to quit modeling this week following attacks from the media about her weight gain.

Here is the picture that spawned the weight attacks:

gemma-ward-skinny-chunky-240tp110909

(Photo from StyleList.com)

Call me crazy, but this looks like a healthy woman… not someone with even a teeny ounce of a weight problem. And we wonder why girls are always questioning their appearance rather than embracing their bodies…

Click here to read more about Gemma in my latest Examiner article.

A Fetchin’ Good Night

Orthodontist Appointment and Wedding Talk

I left work a little early today for an invisalign appointment with my orthodontist. Yes, I am 24 and am going through braces (albeit clear ones) for the first time.

My orthodontist is awesome (she went to Haaaa-vard) and is a fellow bride-to-be. I ended up staying after my appointment for half an hour or so chatting with her and oogling over Orlando wedding photographer’s photo albums online. All the wedding talk made me super excited for this weekend when Ryan and I head to St. Petersburg to stay with my parents and check out some venues. We’re not sure whether Orlando or St. Pete will be our location of choice, but I am ready to start lookin’ at some places!

Entertaining the Pup

Sadie was ready and rearin’ to go when I got home. I tossed a load of laundry in the washing machine and leashed her up for a trip to the dog park.

dog park sign

Don't Forget

I loved that sign posted on the doggie bulletin board. Nice and to the point. Pick up the doodie people!

Sadie took off and found a ball within 2.5 seconds of our arrival to the park.

sadie with ball

"This is the best ball EVERRRR!"

She enjoyed several rounds of fetch and lots of time in the lake.

sadie swimming

Just Keep Swimming, Just Keep Swimming...

sadie fetching

Got it!

I love watching her run around and just be a dawg!

sadie

Regal Sadie

Dinner

Dinner was a remix of leftovers. I used the roasted butternut squash and onions from last night’s butternut and apple pizza and tossed them with broccoli florets and portobello mushrooms.

veggies

Lots of Veggies

I added some yummy egg noodles to the mix to create a tasty pasta dish.

pasta bowl

Pastafied

Yum!

Tonight I’m off to continue checking chores off my to do list… laundry, dishes, paint my nails… fun!