Valentine’s Day {Menu} at Home

Since we are expecting a nor’easter (which is the norm around here lately) tomorrow we’ve decided to cancel our reservations at Catch and enjoy dinner at home for Valentine’s Day. Adam will be taking over the appetizers & main course parts of the meal and I’ll be in charge of the drinks + dessert. Here is what is on our menu!

Appetizer:

Fresh Peach Crostini with Whipped Honey Feta & Balsamic Drizzle (via Iowa Girl Eats)

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Main Course: 

Caesar Salad with Heart Croutons (via Martha Stewart)

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Classic Shrimp Scampi (via Brown Sugar)

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Dessert:

Chocolate Covered Strawberries (via The Yummy Life)

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Drink: 

Strawberry Heart Mojitos (via Young Married Chic)

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Eating in also saves money + calories and we could afford to save a little of both right now in anticipation of our 9 day trip to California! 3 more weeks til we’re out of this snow can’t come soon enough… What are you doing for Valentine’s Day? If you’re staying home, what’s on your menu?

 

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The rest of the 4th four day weekend

We didn’t do much, but it was perfect… We’re still catching up on life from traveling non-stop and moving into a new place. Here are snapshots from the weekend.

Beach Day! (ps: worst beach ever)

Beach Day! (ps: worst beach ever)

No weekend is complete without Fro-Yo

No weekend is complete without Fro-Yo

I usually fall asleep during movies...Unless Channing Tatum is in it.

I usually fall asleep during movies…Unless Channing Tatum is in it.

Trader Joe's run. Sucker for those marshmallows!

Trader Joe’s run. Sucker for those marshmallows!

Adding flowers to our back porch

Adding flowers to our back porch

90 degree runs call for a wearing of the fanny pack

90 degree runs call for a wearing of the fanny pack

Summer salads <3

Summer salads ❤

The Track.

The Track.

More Bike Rides. Tip: Do not wear flip flops while riding a bike. You might scrape all of your toes against concrete while riding 25 mph down a hill. Ouch.

More Bike Rides. Tip: Do not wear flip flops while riding a bike. You might scrape all of your toes against concrete while riding 25 mph down a hill. Ouch.

Chicken & Waffles

Chicken & Waffles

Feta, Goat Cheese, Artichokes, Asparagus & Pancetta PIZZA. Drooling.

Feta, Goat Cheese, Artichokes, Asparagus & Pancetta PIZZA. Drooling.

Golf Range

Golf Range

Weekend Stuff

Blueberry Banana Protein Muffins (Clean)

Blueberry Banana Protein Muffins (Clean)

Convinced the husband to take me to J. Crew :)

Convinced the husband to take me to J. Crew 🙂

Juice

Juice

and a salad for me

and a salad for me

Bobbys Burger Palace for him

Bobbys Burger Palace for him

Carwash

Carwash

#OOTD

#OOTD

Saturday Night dinner @ Matt & Meera

Saturday Night dinner @ Matt & Meera

I was healthy all day...

I was healthy all day…

Trying out my new polar ft4!

Trying out my new polar ft4!

Outside of our new place

Outside of our new place

Obsessed with these shorts -- I knew I wanted them before we went in the store and had the woman take them off of a mannequin.

Obsessed with these shorts — I knew I wanted them before we went in the store and had the woman take them off of a mannequin.

#jcrew

#jcrew

Cake Batter Blondies

Cake Batter Blondies

Asparagus Risotto

Asparagus Risotto

Crab cake salad <3

Crab cake salad ❤

Appetizers at a friends

Appetizers at a friends

Favorite Find from TJ's yesterday

Favorite Find from TJ’s yesterday

WIAW – Cadbury Egg Blondies

Happy Wednesday! I have QUITE the recipe for you and just a heads up — it’s NOT healthy 🙂 But first let’s get to WIAW. As always thanks to Jenn for hosting!

WIAW GOES GREEN

Breakfast: Burnt Strawberry Protein Pancake {egg whites, protein powder, ground flax, cinnamon, almond milk, strawberries and greek yogurt}

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Lunch: Mason Jar Salad {vegan dijon dressing: (evoo, dijon, agave, water) red quinoa, shrimp, cucumber, avocado & spring mix

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Dinner: Chickpea Pot Pie (cornbread topping) in the crockpot

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Dessert: Cadbury Egg Blondie

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If we’re talking candy, Easter is my favorite Holiday! Reese’s eggs, Cadbury eggs (the hard ones), Chocolate Hollow Bunnies & Peeps — Everything just tastes better in egg form. When I was younger (and had a speedy metabolism) I would eat an entire package a day to myself. Since I can’t do that now, I decided to make a dessert out of them.

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Cadbury Egg Blondies

Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup melted butter
  • 2 1/4 cup packed brown sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 1/2 cup All Purpose flour
  • 2 t. baking powder
  • 1 t. coarse sea salt
  • 1 large bag of Cadbury Chocolate Eggs (hard)
  • 1 cup milk chocolate chips
  • 1 t. vanilla
  • also for garnish 1/2 cup melted chocolate chips

Directions

  • Preheat oven to 350degrees
  • Grease 9×13 baking pan
  • In medium sized bowl combine flour, baking powder and salt, whisking together.
  • In mixing bowl combine butter and brown sugar on low speed until smooth.
  • Add eggs one at a time continuing on low speed.
  • Add vanilla
  • Slowly add the the flour mixture to the butter mixture until just combined.
  • Add 3/4 bag of cadbury eggs and chocolate chips stirring with wooden spoon.
  • Spread batter into prepared pan and bake approx 25-30 minutes until they are set.
  • Toothpick will come out slightly gooey.  Be careful not to overcook.
  • When removed from oven sprinkled reserved cadbury eggs on top and drizzle with melted chocolate.

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PS – I couldn’t resist cutting into these — Wait 30 minutes before slicing. The rest of them didn’t break — Only the one I took the picture of and burnt my mouth with because I’m impatient 🙂

How to make the perfect mason jar salad

Happy Friday!

This week I decided to try the whole mason jar salad trend. I wanted to pack more veggies into my diet and salads for lunch (I usually eat leftover dinner or tuna fish) seemed like my best bet.

I’m not sure why I have a plethora of mason jars in our tiny apartment but I put em to good use this week!

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Salad Creations:

(add ingredients into mason jar from left to right)

1. Shrimp, Quinoa & Arugula Salad: vegan dijon dressing (dijon, evoo, water, pepper & agave) , quinoa, cucumber, shrimp, avocado, arugula

2. Fruit & Goat Cheese Salad: vegan poppyseed dressing (dijon, agave, poppy seeds, lime, water, salt, pepper ), quinoa, strawberries, blueberries, goat cheese, spinach *candied nuts on the side*

3. Asian Salad: vegan asian dressing (lemon, evoo, sesame oil, sesame seeds, salt, water, stevia ), shredded carrots, edamame, sprouts, red pepper, chicken, sesame seeds, mixed greens

4. Greek Salad: vegan greek dressing (evoo, garlic powder, onion powder, dijon, red wine vinegar, basil, salt, pepper), whole wheat pasta, cucumber, tomato, olives, chickpeas, feta, romaine

5. Caprese Salad: vegan balsamic dressing (balsamic vinegar, evoo, salt, pepper ), whole wheat pasta, tomatoes, mozzarella, spinach, basil

6. Taco Salad: spicy creamy dressing (greek yogurt, spicy salsa), black beans, corn, tomatoes avocado, romaine, mexican cheese *crushed tortilla chips on the side*

Really, the possibilities are endless but here are some tips to follow.

  •  Keep the dressing on the bottom to make sure none of your ingredients get soggy.
  • Put your hard vegetables (or grains) in second to marinate in the dressing
  • Pack your ingredients in tightly – It leaves less room for condensation!
  • Bring a bowl or a plate (if your work doesn’t provide them) so you can dump out your salad and toss the dressing into it
  • Make ahead on Sunday for the entire week – It will stay fresh til Friday – I promise!
  • If you’re adding nuts, chips or croutons bring them in a separate baggy. There is a high chance they will get soggy.

 

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Follow this rule of thumb to make your own creations!

Questions: Have you tested out the mason jar salad trend? If so, what was your favorite creation? 

Christopher’s Kitchen

In between the indulging we did manage to sneak in a few healthy meals. Saturday afternoon we headed to Christopher’s Kitchen for lunch outside on their patio.

030 I’m so artsy.

Christopher’s Kitchen is a raw vegan restaurant in Palm Beach Gardens. They have everything from fresh juices to tacos to ice cream sundaes. We browsed the menu for 10 minutes before making final decisions. There were so many options to choose from so I wanted to make sure we were making the best choice.

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I went with the Florida Chopped salad. There is something about a chopped salad that makes it 10x more enjoyable. My salad had sunflower sprouts, sprouted garbanzo beans & lentils, kale, romaine, apple, cranberries, herbs, avocado and pumpkin seeds with dijon dressing.

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Fabulous and refreshing.

Adam ordered the baby dragon bowl which had zucchini noodles, broccoli, red pepper, bok choy, cilantro, sesame seeds, almonds, and was tossed in five spice dressing.

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He couldn’t wait to dig in to his vegan lunch 😉

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He surprisingly liked it (a lot!) and finished the entire bowl. It had a nice kick to it and he’s a sucker for spicy foods so I’m glad they had something to please his meat-eating palette.

Good thing the lunch was light because I wasn’t leaving there without trying dessert! We chose the Cinnamon Sundae which was cinnamon maple sauce, candied pecans, crushed caramel bark and bananas w/ vanilla ice cream. Ummmmmmm, can you even handle the description?

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Vegan has never tasted so good and I can now die happy.

I also noticed they had a pastry case inside and mentally noted we needed to stop back in before heading back to New Jersey.

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On our way to the airport I picked up a few sweet treats (for myself) including 1 almond butter ball, 1 peppermint patty and 2 pieces of salted caramel chocolate bark.

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In an attempt to eat something besides dessert for dinner I also bought a freshly pressed juice (watermelon + mint) and an arugula and quinoa salad.

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Another winner in our book. The only thing I wish is that it was a bit less expensive. I don’t mind paying for good quality food but this isn’t somewhere I could eat daily on my food budget!

 

Sunday Stuff 1/27

Peanut Butter S'mores Banana Bread - It was delicious but I put it in a pan that was too small so it overflowed and didn't look pretty.

Peanut Butter S’mores Banana Bread – It was delicious but I put it in a pan that was too small so it overflowed and didn’t look pretty. 

 

Who will buy me a $700 pair of sunglasses?

Who will buy me a $700 pair of sunglasses?

Rainbow Chard, Walnuts, & Pear Salad

Rainbow Chard, Walnuts, & Pear Salad at Whole Foods

 

OOTD

OOTD

Salmon Mango and Avocado Sushi Roll

Salmon Mango and Avocado Sushi Roll 

Trader Joe's

Trader Joe’s 

 

Vegan Broccoli "Cheese" Soup and Cheese Quesadilla

Vegan Broccoli “Cheese” Soup and Cheese Quesadilla

 

Clean Eating Cookies with Almond Milk

Clean Eating Cookies with Almond Milk

Hope your Sunday was as nice as mine!

Sunday Stuff – 1/13

via iPhone

Juice to kick off Sunday morning: Frozen Peaches, spinach, cucumber, kiwi, apple, lemon, broccoli ice & water

Juice to kick off Sunday morning: Frozen Peaches, spinach, cucumber, kiwi, apple, lemon, broccoli ice & water

Tempting cake at church... I passed it up. Whew.

Tempting cake at church… I passed it up. Whew.

Husband snapping pics of us walking around in Hoboken

Husband snapping pics of us walking around in Hoboken

Red Dragon Crunch Roll at Whole Foods

Red Dragon Crunch Roll at Whole Foods

Major Grocery Shopping today!

Major Grocery Shopping today!

Salad with buffalo cauliflower from Peta's website.

Salad with buffalo cauliflower from Peta’s website.

Um. Get these.

Um. Get these.

How did I manage to pick the ugliest color for my gel manicure??

How did I manage to pick the ugliest color for my gel manicure that will last 3 weeks?? Ugh.

 How was your Sunday??

Tramonti in NYC

Last weekend my brother Keith and his girlfriend, Brittany, came up to visit!

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We both went our separate ways while roaming the city but had plans to meet up for dinner at the restaurant, Tramonti. My brother was the one who suggested this restaurant and it was a good recommendation! Thankfully, we made reservations because the restaurant was tiny and NYC was crowded.

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Don’t you just love NYC during Christmas?

After trekking through Rockefeller center where a million other people were, we sat down at our table.

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1/2 bottle of prosecco for me. Don’t mind if I do.

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You are also greeted with a warm bread basket and olive oil / vinegar for dipping. My favorite!

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Adam and I split a salad that was on the specials menu which consisted of spinach, green apples, goat cheese, candied walnuts and a light dressing. I wasn’t a fan of these particular nuts (twss?)- they were too chewy. I was all over that goat cheese though!

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For dinner, I ordered another “Special of the Day”. Butternut Squash Ravioli in a butter and sage sauce. VERY delicious!

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Keith and Brittany split the gnocchi and a Caesar salad which they said was phenomenal.

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It’s no shocker my husband had to order the most expensive thing on the menu – Veal chop, mashed potatoes and broccoli rabe. Since the only thing left on his plate was a bone – I think its safe to say he enjoyed it as well!

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Paparazzi break while we wait for dessert!

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Adam and I chose the ricotta cheesecake and vanilla ice cream. The ice cream was no joke. I think they may have put more than a pint in our bowl!? The cheesecake was amazing… Not too sweet, which was great because the Ice Cream was a nice balance.

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Keith and Brittany went with tiramisu and chocolate ice cream. Clean plates all around!

We were going to head to Rolf’s  after dinner but well…we’re kinda old and were exhausted after a big meal! It’s probably best we didn’t attempt to go there because I heard there was a huge line out the door. Old people need sleep…

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5 more days til Christmas!

Questions: Have you seen the Christmas Tree at Rockefeller Center? It’s so beautiful but extremely packed. I would suggest going the weekend after they light it – Not the weekend before Christmas (like us)

 

Sunday Stuff – 12/16

Trader Joes weekly shopping trip

Trader Joes weekly shopping trip 

 

Lunch - Romaine, Artichoke Hearts, Cucumbers, Pine Nuts, Feta, Veggie Burger & Greek Dressing

Lunch – Romaine, Artichoke Hearts, Cucumbers, Pine Nuts, Feta, Veggie Burger & Greek Dressing 

 

Painting wrapping paper

Painting wrapping paper 

 

Snack - Beet, Carrot & Spinach Flax Chips, Vegetarian Refried Beans, Mexican Cheese & Peach Salsa with a dollop of Plain Greek Yogurt

Snack – Beet, Carrot & Spinach Flax Chips, Vegetarian Refried Beans, Mexican Cheese & Peach Salsa with a dollop of Plain Greek Yogurt 

 

Getting really good at painting my own baby nails

Getting really good at painting my baby nails

 

Sweet Potato Chili with more chips, mexican cheese and greek yogurt

Sweet Potato Chili with more chips, mexican cheese and greek yogurt

 

Watching Football in front of the Christmas Tree

Watching Football in front of the Christmas Tree 

 

Read the Description. No words.

Read the Description. No words.