First Impression: Plated Food Delivery Subscription

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I got my first Plated box yesterday and I couldn’t wait to dig in!

First, what the heck is Plated? I hadn’t heard of it before, either. But, I got sent a promo for two free meals and couldn’t resist trying it.

Basically it’s a box of fresh groceries that is delivered to your door based on a pre-determined delivery schedule and serving size. The ingredients themselves are fresh, antibiotic/hormone free meats, sustainable sea food, and local whenever possible. The recipes are designed by actual chefs. Literally, all you need is to pick your delivery schedule, specify the number of servings you need, decide your menu, and very, very basic cooking skills…they do the rest.

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Frittata for one!

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photo 3I needed to use up some eggs I had and could think of only one (sort a) healthy way to do that. Frittata! But, I don’t do well with portion control on my own, so I decided I wanted to make them individually sized (and freezable!).

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After scouring the internet (read: Googled for like two seconds) I came across this delicious recipe from Two Peas and Their Pod.

I followed the recipe exactly (loved the breakdown of the eggs: 5 whites, 2 whole) and the addition of the turkey sausage. I also threw in some roasted red peppers…just cause.

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And, after just 25 minutes (plus prep time) I have a great little breakfast or even dinner (with a fresh salad).

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Highly recommend this recipe for everyone! Enjoy!

Two Easy 10-minute meals perfect for spring-time weather

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Whenever the weather warms…even just a little…my entire diet changes. All of a sudden, the heavy, comforting foods just aren’t all that appealing anymore. Yesterday, I turned down fried food. What?!

And, it doesn’t stop there. Even the **way** I cook changes. Slaving over the stove or having the oven running for hours just isn’t my thing.

So, when the two new me’s collide and I find the perfect recipe…I’m hooked. Lucky for you, I’ve got two this week!

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Ragu alla Bolognese Ricetta Antica

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If you wanna be a great self-taught cook, you have got to do your research. That means cook books, Google, and cooking shows. And, although the quintessential network for cooking, The Food Network, is great mindless television it is certainly not the place to go to **learn** to cook. Sure, you can learn recipes and basic techniques, but if you want know how to cook there’s a much better network to watch.  Continue reading

1st Impression: McCormick Gourmet Recipe and Seasoning Mix

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So, I’m starting a new series inspired by some of my favorite makeup blogs and vlogs. ItsJudyTime does the most wonderful YouTube videos where she tests out a product for the first time. It gives viewers a unique look into what it is like to use that product…for the first time The first impression of any product often yields the more honest opinions since the expectations have yet to be set. Where I’m not totally adventurous in trying new products from the beauty aisle, I am always trying new things from the food store.

For my inaugural post, I’m testing out McCormick’s Gourmet Recipe and Seasoning Mix. It is exactly what it says it is…a mix of different spices and seasonings combined with a unique recipe.

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Best Pot Roast I’ve ever made…EVER!

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I am unabashedly a meat and potatoes girl. Always have been. I remember as a little girl going to my MawMaw’s house. She had a giant pecan tree in her back yard and always had a pot roast cooking. We’d make homemade biscuits together and finish the day off with a slice of pecan pie. Days with her are some of my fondest memories.

And, now that I’m all grown up, all I want is to be as awesome of a cook as she was. Starting with her specialty, pot roast.

I’ve tried tons of times in the past to get it just right, but they always came out dry, stringy/fiberous, and flavorless. I’ve tried it on the stove top (like she did), in the oven, and in my crock pot. Same lackluster results.

…until today!

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It came out juicy, tender, and everything I remember about my MawMaw’s pot roast.

Here’s how I did it:

  • 2.5lbs boneless beef chuck
  • 5 carrots
  • I russet potato
  • 1 yellow onion
  • 1 bunch of celery
  • 5 cloves of garlic
  • 1 package of McCormick’s Slow Cooker Pot Roast Seasoning
  • 1 cup Veggie Stock
  • Olive Oil, salt, and pepper
  1. Let the roast sit out on the counter for an hour or so to take the chill off. Season liberally with Olive Oil, salt and pepper on both sides. Sear all sides in a very hot pan until brown and beautiful. (5 mins on first side, 2 mins on other side, 30 seconds to 1 minute on small sides)
  2. Remove roast from saute pan and set to the side while you prepare the veggies.
  3. Peel the potato, onion and carrots. Chop all vegetables (potato, onion, celery, and carrots)  into chunks…about 1-2 inch pieces. Smash the garlic with the back of your knife, peel them, and leave them whole.
  4. In a measuring cup, mix the McCormicks seasoning packet into the cup of vegetable stock.
  5. Transfer all vegetables to the slow cooker. Place the roast on top of the bed of veggies. Pour the sauce over everything. Set the slow cooker to low and roast for 8 hours (or high for 4 hours).
  6. To finish, remove the roast from the slow cooker. Drain off all the juice into a sauce pan and cook with a tablespoon of flour until thickened (maybe 10 minutes). Place the veggies on a serving plate, place the roast on top of that and serve the sauce on the side in your best gravy boat.

Here’s to my MawMaw and hoping I can figure out that biscuit recipe!

Perfect Pad Thai…a recipe

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I love pad thai. Like love in that unhealthy, obsessive sort of way. I could eat it every day. We have a great, highly acclaimed, uber popular Thai restaurant here called Basil. Their pad thai is ok. The pad thai I love is the dirty, gross, comfort food kind of pad thai that you can only find in a hole in the wall restaurant named something silly like Tasty Thai. Basically, the McDonalds of pad thai. 

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But, today I was feeling adventurous and creative and thought I’d try my own pad thai. I went to my trusty “How to Cook Everything” app and there it was…an easy, straight forward pad thai recipe. 

Ingredients:

  1. Rice Noodles
  2. Peanut Oil
  3. Eggs
  4. Garlic
  5. Shrimp
  6. Tofu
  7. Scallions
  8. Bean Sprouts
  9. Nam pia (Thai Fish Sauce)
  10. Tamarind paste
  11. Sugar
  12. Peanuts
  13. Cilantro
  14. Green Chilies
  15. Lime

Ok, so 15 ingredients is kind of a doozy for a quick night meal, but if you prepare everything ahead (slice the garlic, peel the shrimp, prep the bean sprouts, etc) it all goes together really, really fast. 

I was able to find most of the ingredients in my local food store. The sauces (nam pia and tamarind paste) were a no go, though. Instead, I just purchased a prepared pad thai sauce. I was leery. Rightly so. It was ok. 

I omitted the tofu (duh) and replaced it with a small chicken breast.

How to:

  • Cook the noodles by pouring boiling water over them and letting them “steep” for 15 mins. 
  • Put some oil in a skillet and crack the eggs. Scramble the eggs with the flat edge of a fork until you get a crepe of sorts. Remove the eggs from the pan and slice into 1/4 thick strips.
  • Raise the heat to high, add more oil, and add the chicken. When almost cooked through, add the garlic and shrimp. Remove all from the pan and set aside.
  • Add scallions and half the bean sprouts and cook for a few minutes. Remove and add to the protein plate.
  • Put the cooked through, drained noodles, eggs, pad thai sauce and sugar in the pan and cook for a minute or so. Then, add the protein plate and stir all the ingredients together. 
  • Transfer to serving plate, top with peanuts, cilantro, chiles, remaining bean sprouts, and serve with lime wedges.

#nomnomnom It’s delicious. I really wouldn’t do anything different other than trying to make the sauce myself rather than buying the prepared stuff. If anyone knows where I can find Nam Pia and Tamarind Paste (even online) let me know! 

Let me know, also, if you make this recipe. I’d love to know any changes you’d make to this recipe.

Do you love Pad Thai as much as me? If not, what’s one of your favorite restaurant dishes?