Crustless Veggie Quiche

If I would have known how easy quiche was to make, I would have tried a long time ago! My mom and I got a quiche kick a few years ago and she makes them all the time. I wanted to try one without a crust since I’ve been watching my carbs. Here it is in all its glory:

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Prep time: 20 minutes | Cook time: 45-50 minutes

What you’ll need:

  • 2 cups of frozen or fresh spinach
  • 6 eggs
  • 1/2 cup of Half & Half or Milk
  • 1 cup of chopped bell peppers (I like buying the bag of baby bell peppers!)
  • 1 cup of chopped mushrooms
  • 1/2 cup of chopped onions
  • Quiche or pie dish
  • Pink Salt
  • Black Pepper
  • Doc Meyers Hot Pepper Shake
  • 1 tbsp of butter
  • Garlic clove
  • Cheese of your choice! (I used grated Gouda and Sharp Cheddar.)

How to:

  • Heat olive oil in a sauce pan over medium heat.
  • Add in chopped onions and cook down to a golden brown. Add in salt and pepper.
  • Add in chopped peppers and mushrooms and cook down to a simmer with the onions. Add in salt and pepper as you wish.
  • Add in the garlic.
  • In a bowl, mix together eggs and cream or milk. Add in salt and pepper as you wish. Add in a pinch of Doc Meyers Hot Pepper Shake. It’s hot! Less is more!
  • Butter your baking dish.
  • Cover the dish with spinach.
  • Layer the onion, pepper, and mushroom mix over the spinach.
  • Grate some cheese on top of your veggies.
  • Pour the egg mixture on top.
  • MORE CHEESE!!! 🙂
  • Bake for 45-50 minutes at 350 degrees. Once you notice the edges getting a little crispy, it’s perfect!
  • Enjoy!

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Strawberry & Blueberry Whole Wheat Pancakes

My mom is the pancake queen – literally. She makes a huge batch of pancakes at least one weekend a month. During the summer, it seems like it’s every weekend! Apple, chocolate chip, peach, blueberry – she’s made them all! What’s crazy is that out of all the times she’s made them, I’ve never watched! They were just magically there on the kitchen counter when I woke up on a Sunday mornings because she’s the best mom ever!

So I’ve been trying out different pancake mixes, trying to make some as yummy as hers and I’ve found an AMAZING pancake mix! Kodiak Cakes are made with 100% whole grain, which is perfect for me as I am on the Advocare 24-day challenge right now! I need to watch my sugar, carbs, and all the other good stuff! What’s so great about this pancake mix is that the flavor is SO good, you barely need any syrup, if at all!

While I was able to find a super awesome pancake mix, I am still very much riding the struggle bus when it comes to cooking them. My first 3 never turn out. Everything sticks to my pan. They are far from circular – much more blob-like. I’ve basically been cooking up mounds of batter with fruit thrown in. The good thing is they still taste INCREDIBLE.

I added in flax seed to the pancake mix. Why? It adds great texture, plus it’s good for you! It’s rich in Omega 3 Essential Fatty Acids, which are “good fats.” It can help maintain healthy cholesterol and blood sugar levels. Flax seed is also high in fiber! Woot woot!

Here’s how I made these pancakes!
Prep Time: 15 minutes | Cook time: 2 pancakes per pan for about 5 minutes

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What you’ll need:
• non-stick pan or griddle
• butter to grease the pan
• 1 box of Kodiak Cakes Frontier Flapjack and Waffle Mix. This time I used the Whole Wheat, Oat & Honey flavor. Sometimes this brand is on Cartwheel 🙂
• fresh or frozen strawberries
• fresh or frozen blueberries
• dash of cinnamon
• sliced almonds
• 1/4 – 1/2 cup of milled flax seed. I used Carrington Farms Organic Milled Flax Seed.

How to:
1. Follow the directions on the Kodiak Cakes Frontier Flapjack Box!
2. As you’re mixing up the mix with water, add in your desired amount of strawberries and blueberries. It’s okay if they are the frozen. They thaw pretty quickly.
3. Stir in about 1/4 – 1/2 cup of milled flax seed.
4. Stir in about 1/4 – 1/2 cup of sliced almonds.
5. Add a few dashes of cinnamon.

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6. Heat some butter in the pan.
7. Depending on the size of your pan, slowly pour batter into the pan to start cooking the however many pancakes will fit! Mine is only about 2 in a standard pan. My mom however – the pancake queen – has a fancy griddle and cranks out like 8 at a time.
8. Over medium heat, I usually cook each side for about 2.5 minutes or until golden brown.
9. Finish with a little bit of syrup or powdered sugar if you wish! I actually didn’t use any this time!

These are super good reheated! I like to make a huge batch and have them for a few days. Enjoy!

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Roasted Acorn Squash

I love going to the Goshen Market in Edwardsville during the summer and I am always so bummed when winter starts up because the market goes away! But a few weeks back, Goshen Market had a pop-up and there were some fab winter vegetables! I picked up this acorn squash from a super nice local farmer. He sold me on how easy it was to cook. Now I’ve been buying them like crazy at the store! I’ve recently bought some butternut squash, too, and I cook it the same way.

Never had acorn squash before? Here’s what you’ve been missing out on, according to organicfacts.net:

  • boosts immune system
  • prevents certain cancers
  • improves vision and skin
  • strengthens bones
  • regulates blood sugar and cholesterol
  • improves digestion
  • maintains proper circulation
  • tons of vitamins and minerals

So it’s basically AMAZING!

 

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Here’s how I cooked it! Prep time: 10 minutes | Cook time: 35-45 minutes

What you’ll need:

  • Baking pan
  • 1/4 cup of water
  • 1 acorn squash
  • olive oil
  • pink salt
  • black pepper

How to:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Rinse off the acorn squash.
  3. Slice the squash in half so that you can lay it flush (or almost flush) with the baking pan, skin side up.  I cut each half in half again. So 4 pieces total. Cut off the top and the bottom ends. It’s super difficult to cut! You’ll need a serious knife.
  4. Scoop out the seeds.

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5. Brush some olive oil onto the squash. Sprinkle pink salt and black pepper. Use however much you want!

6. Pour water onto the baking pan. You need water to get the squash cooking. You don’t need to completely cover the baking pan, just enough to get the squash to start sizzling!

7. Place the squash face down (skin side up) on the baking pan.

8. Bake in the oven for 35-45 minutes. Do a taste test if you aren’t sure if it’s done. It should have a consistency similar to a sweet potato!

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I eat it right out of the skin with a fork! Dice it up if you are sharing it with others. If it gets mushy when you cut it, put it back in the oven for another 15 minutes or so to get it a little bit more crispy! You may need to toss some more olive oil on it. Then serve!

If it’s not quite sweet enough for you, add a little brown sugar or even some balsamic! Experiment with flavors!

YUM!!!

 

 

Painted Anchor Window

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I hoard old windows. I have been buying them at flea markets, antique stores, and even swap and sell Facebook sites. I plan to clean them all up and paint something unique and pretty on each one. It’s hard to part with them all because after I paint them I usually want to keep them for myself, but there is no way I can hang anything else on my walls. The beautiful weather this weekend had me in the mood to go outside and start painting some! I had pinned a cute little pallet board with an anchor on it a while ago, and decided to mimic the anchor on one of my windows. After all, anchors are kind of like the new mustache. Anchors aren’t anything necessarily appealing in real life, but slap it on curtain or a necklace or a window and suddenly it’s a lovely design trend.

Some tips when painting on windows:

• Have some q-tips handy for quick fix-ups and smears that may happen.

•Have a clean water cup to dip q-tips or a towel into and then use to wipe off paint if you mess something up. You can even just scratch the paint right off!!! Mistakes are super easy to fix on the glass.

I started with a white base and freehanded the anchor directly onto the glass. I am a fan of eyeballing everything. Rulers are not my friend. Whatever looks like the middle to me is the middle 🙂

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I then started to mix some blue strokes in. I used some of the blues straight from the bottle, but I also mixed a few new shades of my own. 

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I added some browns along some edges to make the anchor pop. Then I painted some dry strokes along the wood on the other side of the glass for a border effect. And voila! All done. Now I just need to add some wire on the back to hang it.

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Weekend of Thrifting

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Nicer weather means it’s flea market time! I stumbled across my new favorite store in Maryville called Vintage 159. They were having a flea market outside the other day and I stopped by. There’s something so fun about looking through a bunch of old things and trying to think of a use for them. The first thing I noticed was this funky looking shelf. It’s the long, brown wooden shelf in the photo. The guy selling it was not even sure it was a shelf. He said he had never brought it out before because he didn’t think anyone would buy it. I plan to pain it and them decorate it with some old bottles and flowers on every other opening.

I picked up a few flour sacks, too, finally. I see them everywhere and I finally got a good deal on some nicer ones. I have no idea what I am going to do with them yet, I have just always wanted some. The windows are going to be added to my growing collection. I hoard old windows and slowly, but surely, will start to finish painting them for decoration. I have a done a few before and they turned out really pretty!

I saw the old, rusty, wheel on my way into the shop and had to buy it. It was so cheap! Only like $10. I figured I can do something with that, too, and get an Anthropologie look for way less. I found the fabulous suitcases inside Vintage 159. I could spend hours in that little store. They had the coolest items. Old, new, refurbished, redone, painted, destroyed, vintage, EVERYTHING. The prices were unbelieveable. I plan to turn the suitcases into displays for jewelry and accessories.

Now I just need to get to painting and selling! But I always end up wanting to keep everything for myself 🙂

2015 Grammys: Snoozefest until Kanye acted like Kanye

I look forward to The Grammys every single year because of my love my music. Even though The Grammys fail to recognize hundreds of talented and deserving artists, it is still the one night of the year that the industry brings all genres of music together under one roof. Music is a common thread among people of all races, cultures and beliefs and we all share the love for this creative outlet.

The evening was particularly boring, to say the least, until the last award. But let’s rewind to some of the show’s earlier performances. AC/DC started the evening, which was odd to me. Hi, how old are you? Their prime has long past. I was not into it. Madonna was Madonna and she did everything I thought she would. I really feel like I can’t criticize her because she basically created nearly every female pop artist after her. Ariana Grande had a super boring ballad. I cannot stand that girl. She does no annunciate her words when she sings. It’s like she sings with peanut butter on the roof of her mouth.

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Ed Sheeran was really great with John Mayer, but it was another slow song. I was hoping he was going to do “Don’t” or “Sing” and then John Mayer would have done some cool, funk riffs, but oh well, it was still great. Gwen Stefani showed us all that she should not sing anything except her own No Doubt or solo career songs. Paul McCartney with Kanye and Rihanna was so uncomfortable. It felt super fake and forced. You had the living Beatle legend looking classy with his guitar, yet his mic seemed to be off. Then Kanye is over on the other side grabbing himself, while Rihanna awkwardly flaps her arms around and bobs to the song. Sometimes genres really shouldn’t collide and this was a great example. Just thinking about that performance again makes me cringe.

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Annie Lennox and Hozier were spectacular. They were the perfect duo with their strong, powerful voices. “Put a Spell On You” was SUCH a good mix with the dark lyrics of “Take Me to Church.” That was probably my favorite performance of the night. Sia’s “Chandelier” was another one of my favorites. I love love LOVE this woman and her music. I understand her unique artistry and loved that Maddie was there again to perform with her. Kristen Wiig was definitely a shocker, but I kinda liked it. Lastly, from my list of memorable performances, was “Stay With Me.” When you put Mary J. Blige with Sam Smith you know that something beautiful is about to be created and it was UH-mazing.

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Back to the most interesting part of the evening: the Album of the Year Grammy. The gut-wrenching feeling of Kanye running up to steal Beck’s thunder like Taylor was felt across America. How rude, disrespectful, immature, low, and just all around ridiculous of Kanye to ALMOST do that again. I was not laughing, I was in shock. It was almost worse by not actually saying anything right then and there and just scurrying back to his seat. The attention went to him and that’s what he wanted, in my opinion.

I know a few Beck songs here and there from his past records. I did some more research on him and listened to the winning album, Morning Phase. I have nothing but mad love for that guy. People were comparing his win to Martin Scorsese finally getting Best Director with The Departed after so many years of great films. Beck has 12 studio albums and now 5 Grammys after last night’s 3 wins. He’s no stranger to the art of music, much like Kanye would like to believe. Some of the quotes I was reading from him were just plain ludicrous. “…I am here to fight for creativity,” “Beck needs to respect artistry and he should have given his award to Beyoncé, and at this point, we tired of it.” Let’s just applaud for a moment because my oh my, Kanye is a man of undeniable intellect, I mean after all, he did name is child North West. Beck played every instrument on Morning Phase. He is a master of mixing and creating new sounds to combine genres to create one uniquely his own. Let this be a Grammy celebrating his entire music career thus far. As much love as I have for Beyonce, Beck is truly a musician, not just a performer. John Legend commented on Kanye’s view of Beck’s win and I have to say I totally agree with him. “While his win may have been a surprise to many, it’s not because he’s not a great artist deserving of recognition. All of the other nominated artists, including Beyonce, are incredible in their own right, and arguments could be made for any of them deserving to win.”

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And my very last note on the evening: I really hope LL Cool J does not host again next year. I cannot name one thing that man does other than host the Grammys.

Red Carpet Fashion: 2015 Critic’s Choice Movie Awards

Amy Adams

Amy Adams

I love this color on her, but there is nothing exciting about this dress at all! The shoes look uncomfortable and her hair looks like she threw it up in the limo on the way. Not my favorite Amy look. The Golden Globes gown was so beautiful and I cannot wait for her Oscar look. I hope it looks better than this.

Angelina Jolie

Angelina Jolie

I love this gown and I think she looks beautiful. I am concerned about how thin her arms look. Eek.

Emily Blunt

Emily Blunt

She looks absolutely stunning. The red is a gorgeous color on her and it compliments her ombre hair so nicely.

Felicity Jones

Felicity Jones

There is something super lovely about this gown. It is such a pretty goth looks and it looks great on her. I love this look.

Jennifer Aniston

This is questionable. I still don’t really know what to think. If it was black I feel like it would like 100x better.

Jessica Chastain

I am not really getting this look either. The Barbie pink lips have got to go. The dress is pretty but I feel like it’s wearing her and it should be the other way around.

Keira Knightly and James Righton Keira Knightly

Keira Knightly and James Righton

How adorable are they, seriously. They both look so good. Keira Knightly’s gown is definitely my favorite of the evening. It is so her and so beautiful.

Lelie Mann and Judd Apatow

Leslie Mann and Judd Apatow

She manages to be at EVERY single award show it seems like. She always has the most fun looks and this dress is one of them. I love it, shoes and all.

Rosamund Pike

Rosamund Pike

I really did not like her Globes gown and this one is just not my favorite either. It looks so harsh and heavy. I really hope she goes all out for the Oscars.