Steak and Avocado Fajitas

I don’t have steak all that often. As a result, I find myself encountering an intense craving for it every now and then. To my delight, I stumbled upon this recipe for Beef and Avocado Fajitas this past weekend (But for this post, I’d rather refer to it as steak!). I wouldn’t have thought to highlight avocado and steak as the two main ingredients for fajitas; however, I was intrigued and figured I needed to take advantage of an opportunity to eat flank steak!

Step 1: Chop Onions, Carmelize Onions
and Slice Avocados
Step 2: Mix Spices Together and Rub
Them Onto Flank Steak

Step 3: Cook Flank Steak in Pan,
Let Cool and Then Slice
Step 4: Assemble Ingredients Together
Into Warmed Tortilla and Eat!

At first glance, you would think this recipe would need more heat, perhaps in the form of salsas or peppers. But, I was pleasantly surprised by the strength of heat from the spices. Aside from spicy flavors, the avocado and carmelized onions provided a nice splash of cooler flavors. All in all, I really liked this recipe and will look forward to making it again in the summertime!

Cheers!

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Saley

I love crepes – especially because of the versatility to make them either savory or sweet. I have made crepes only one time in my life; however, my crepes did not turn out in as of a tasty concoction as I wanted them to. As a result, I figured I would leave any type of crepe making to the experts.

Through Yelp, I was able to find Saley, a crepe restaurant in the Capitol Hill neighborhood of Seattle and happened to visit it this past Sunday with a few girlfriends. Although the space inside was tiny, the vibe, atmosphere and most importantly, the crepes, more than completed the experience. The server suggested to order the #6 – “The Queen”. As my mind contemplated between savory and sweet, I finally decided to follow the servers suggestion of “The Queen” crepe which was filled with chicken, tomatoes, spinach, cheese and Saley’s secret sauce.

In addition to this delicious crepe, I figured I would complete the meal with a cup of joe for a daily boost of caffeine. Well, the only thing that would have made it truly complete is if we could have been transported to Paris…

Someday!

Cheers!

Strawberry-Almond-Cream-Tart

So, continuing with this past weekend’s trend of using almonds, I found a recipe for a Strawberry-Almond Cream Tart during a recent shopping excursion at the local grocery store. After looking through recipe after recipe in the grocery store magazine aisle, I finally settled upon this one. But, I’m not going to lie, at first glance, I solely wanted to try this recipe because it looked “pretty” and it contained almonds. It wasn’t until after my impulse buy and I was in the car already on the way home that I realized that this would be a perfect dessert for a dinner party: light, summery, and the strawberries I had chosen were actually ripe!

Step 1: Crush Graham Crackers (You
Can Use a Food Processor — I Just Chose
to Smash Them in Bags!)


Step 2: Combine Crushed Graham Cracker
Crumbs With Butter and Sugar 


Step 3: Spray Pan With Cooking Spray;
Press Graham Cracker Crumbs Into Pan 


Step 4: Mix Cream Cheese With Almond
and Vanilla Extracts Plus Sugar 


Step 5: Cut Fresh Strawberries


Step 6: Add Strawberries and
Almonds to Top; Bake and Enjoy! 


Although I altered a few things from the original recipe, I’m happy with how it turned out. I really liked implementing nuts into this dessert because I often don’t ever think to add them to desserts. The key for the best flavor is to toast the almonds and the key to the best construction of this dessert is to use enough cooking spray (I didn’t and had some architectural failure when taking it out of the spring form pan). Anyway, all in all, this is a flavorful dessert that is light and doesn’t leave you feeling too full which is just perfect for summertime!

Cheers!

Baked Macaroni & Cheese With Garlic Bread Crumbs

“It tastes so good, it must be bad.” This thought kept reverberating through my mind while both making this dish (no judgments — I had to sample!) and during consumption. Sometimes, I just get the itch to make comfort food and this past Saturday was no different.

The idea to make macaroni and cheese dawned on me when I happened to peruse down the aisles of the grocery store and spotted one of my childhood favorites in a box: Macaroni & Cheese. Although some of the boxed kinds of Macaroni & Cheese are too die for, I decided to forgo the powdered cheese and unknown-mysterious-overly-processed-can’t pronounce ingredient combination in order to try the “real deal”. However, in making this decision, I knew I would be consuming exorbitant amounts of butter, cream, milk, and cheese in order to delight my taste buds. But, every now and then, I truly believe these types of good (but, oh-so-bad) foods are just absolutely necessary. My final response? Dig in!

Macaroni & Cheese With Garlic Bread Crumbs.

Step 1: Grate Cheeses; Chop Garlic


Step 2: Melt Butter; Whisk Flour &
Mustard; Pour in Cream & Milk




Step 3: Add Sauce to Noodles and Cheese


Step 4: Melt Butter; Add to Olive Oil,
Bread Crumbs and Chopped Garlic


Step 5: Add Bread Crumbs to the Top
of Macaroni; Bake and Enjoy!

“It tastes so good, it must be bad.” Wait, I have a correction: “It tastes so good, it must be bad – but, I’m going to enjoy it anyway!”

The moral of the story: indulge every now and then — it’s a good thing!

Cheers!

Stuffed Tomatoes

Whether in sauce, on a burger, in salads, sundried or whatever other combination, I absolutely love tomatoes. Just think about it, tomatoes already exist in endless combinations of recipes and food concoctions. At least for me, I deem the esteemed tomato to be a staple. But, it seems like I’ve just gotten used to the same tomato-based recipes for the last few months. Plus, in many of my dishes, the tomato was just a side ingredient and not the main hero. So, I decided to find a recipe that was both different and featured the tomato as the main deal: Stuffed Tomatoes (Sunny Anderson from the Food Network).

Step 1: Chop Basil and Garlic; Cut Tops Off
Of Tomatoes and Remove Insides 


Step 2: Combine Parmesan Cheese, Basil,
Garlic, Bread Crumbs, Olive Oil, Salt, and Pepper 


Step 3: Stuff Mixture Into Tomatoes


Step 4: Bake and Enjoy!

I actually really liked this recipe. It was super simple and I loved the tomato as the main feature!

Cheers!

Fresh Lemon Pasta


If you haven’t noticed already, I’m literally all about “ease, ease, ease” and “few ingredients, few ingredients, few ingredients”. Rarely a time exists where I cave and use a recipe that requires over 12 seperate ingredients. That being said, this Tuesday was no different. A friend from college came over to visit my roommate and I. I decided to make a simple dinner and one that would require few ingredients (of course!!).

I had already picked up a lemon at the store a few days prior and decided I wanted to incorporate it somehow. Since I already had pasta on hand, I figured I’d try to figure out some type of pasta-lemon duo. After some glancing around the cupboard, I decided to make Fresh Lemon Pasta as a nice, summery dish.

Step 1: Smash Garlic and Chop Finely


Step 2: Grate Parmesan; Juice and Zest Lemon


Step 3: Combine Zest, Juice, and Olive Oil


Step 4: Combine Cheese, Cooked Noodles, Sauteed
Garlic, and Olive Oil/Lemon Sauce Together; Enjoy!

Although it almost seems too simple, my tastebuds were not disappointed and my wallet was sure happy with me too. As cheesy as that sounds, it is completely true! Anyway, the key to this recipe’s success is lots of garlic (lots!) and playing around with the lemon-to-olive oil ratio in order to make a sauce that includes enough lemon, but doesn’t make your mouth pucker in a sour grin. Next time, I’d like to add chicken or perhaps olives and tomatoes. Until then…

Cheers!

Glorified Cheese Pizza


During one of my last few visits to the store, I happened to pick up a copy of Real Simple. The cover held the infamous “3 Ingredient” featured recipes. I was instantly intrigued. If you haven’t noticed already, I really enjoy making simple recipes and ones that require few ingredients. Therefore, I was extremely drawn towards this issue.

One of my favorite recipes that I saw was for a “flat-bread-esque pizza”. Since I already had puff pastry leftover from making a Rhubarb Tart (as seen here), I knew that this would be the perfect recipe. Plus, whenever has melted cheese and tons of carbohydrates not resulted in a pleasantly awesome situation? Unless something goes drastically wrong, I’d say pretty close to never!

So, I decided to make this recipe. Even though I cheated (I used more than the 3 ingredients as listed in the recipe), I would make this again and again. Real Simple has it right — 3 ingredients (plus a few more minor ones) always wins!

Step 1: Thaw Pastry Dough and Roll Out


Step 2: Cut Tomatoes


Step 3: Layer Cheese and Tomatoes Onto
Puff Pastry; Add Olive Oil, Salt/Pepper, and Spices 


Step 4: Bake and Enjoy!


I absolutely loved this recipe. Although this definitely resulted in just another glorified version of a cheese pizza, it definitely tasted better than a frozen pizza or one from the local joint down the street. The flakiness of the crust just can’t be beat and the authentic gooey-ness was perfection. I’m smitten.

Cheers!