Thursday, July 31, 2014

Asian Pasta Salad



What you need:

1/2 package spaghetti noodles (cooked according to package, drained)
4 chicken breasts or rotisserie chicken (fully cooked, cut into pieces)
3 stalks celery (chopped)
3 green onions (sliced)
sesame seeds for garnish

Dressing
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 TBsp Sesame oil
1 TBsp sugar
2 Tbsp Rice Vinegar
1 garlic clove (minced)
3 TBsp mayonaise 
6 TBsp soy sauce





How to make it:

In a bowl whisk together vegetable oil, sesame oil, sugar, rice vinegar, mayonnaise, soy sauce, and garlic until well combined.
Add in celery, half the green onions, and chicken, toss to combine.
Then add pasta, toss to coat.
Put in the refrigerator for 20 minutes to chill.
Sprinkle the other half of the green onions on top along with some of the sesame seeds to garnish.
Then ENJOY!
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Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Chinese Five Spice Cheesecake






What you need:
Crust:
1 cup crushed up Fortune Cookies
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
8 tablespoons butter, chilled and cut into small pieces
1 egg yolk
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 tablespoons water

Cheesecake filling:
2 pounds (4 packages) softened cream cheese
1 1/4 cups sugar
4 eggs
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
6 ounces Baker's white chocolate, melted
1 ½ teaspoons Chinese Five Spice mix plus 1 pinch for sprinkling

Garnish:
Caramel
Fortune Cookies

How to make it:

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
Use a food processor or by hand, mix the crushed fortune cookies, sugar, and salt in a bowl. 
Add the butter pieces and mix until it resembles small pea size pieces. 
Add the yolk and vanilla, and mix until it forms a ball. 
Add the water to help dough come together. 
Form the dough into a disk and refrigerate for 30 minutes. 
Press the dough into the bottom of a springform pan and bake for about 20 minutes until golden brown, remove from oven and set aside. 
For the filling, use a mixer with a paddle attachment. 
Cream the cheese with the sugar on low speed. 
Add the eggs 1 at a time until smooth making sure to scrape the sides of the bowl. 
Add the vanilla and Chinese Five Spice. 
Slowly pour in the melted white chocolate and mix until well combined. 
Pour the mixture into the springform pan. 
Sprinkle 1 pinch of Chinese Five Spice on top of the cheesecake.  
Wrap aluminum foil around the base of pan and up side to protect from water bath. 
Place pan on sheet pan or pan with high sides and fill with 1/3 water. 
Bake cheesecake for 45 - 60 minutes. (Depends on the size of your cheesecake pan, the thickness will be different) 
Cheesecake is done when the center is set, turn off the oven and leave cheesecake inside till cooled.  Take out of oven, to finish cooling.  
When completely cooled, wrap the top with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight. (To avoid cracking, do not open oven door when baking or cooling)
When ready to serve, unwrap plastic wrap.  
Release from springform and place on serving platter.  
Drizzle with caramel, place 3 Fortune cookies in middle of cheesecake and serve.  
Xiǎngshòu!  (Enjoy!)

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Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Summer Bucket List: Farmer's Market

     Usually the Farmer's Market is held on Saturday mornings, but recently they have started hosting an Evening at the Market.  We packed up the kiddos to check it out!  
   
   
     The hubby and I tried out this 138 Sandwiches Food Truck.  It was pretty tasty!


      We walked around looking at all the vendors, there was lots of people selling their handcrafted items, musicians playing sweet melodies, and chefs dishing out their favorite culinary concoctions.

   
     I haven't had a snow cone in awhile, so we got one for the kiddos to share.  I got to have a few spoonfuls, it was yummy!


     Little Miss finished it off!




Kinley loved listening to the music, she was dancing in the street!





We all had a great time...
we went another one, and plan on going to the one next month too!
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Monday, July 28, 2014

Sister Day

     My sister and I had a great sister day while we were down in Texas.  It was nice to leave the kiddos at home with the hubby and MeeMaw while I spent some time with my Sis.  First, we headed over to Tejas Southern Grill for some lunch.  We both ordered the Pecan Crusted Chicken Spinach Salad and I also tried out their White Sangria.  They were both delicious! 



     Then we walked around the Shops of La Cantera looking for a dress for my sister.  When we couldn't find anything she was looking for she brought me over to Lolli and Pops - Purveyors of Sweetness, this AMAZING candy shop full of tasty treasures!


     It was a really cute and quirky shop with lots of sweet seductions.  I think I spent like fifty bucks just on candy!  I couldn't resist, plus I got some treats for the kiddos, the hubby, and some friends.

I definitely need to visit again!


Here's some of the Vintage Candy!


It was a great afternoon hanging out with my sister again.  
We couldn't stay out too long, since the hubby and I were going out with friends that night.

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Saturday, July 26, 2014

Margarita Cookies

Recipe from Love From the Oven

What you need:
Cookies
2 cups all purpose flour (sifted)
1/4 tsp salt
3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter (room temperature)
Green food coloring
1 cup granulated sugar
1 egg (room temperature) 
1 TBsp finely grated lime zest
1 TBsp pure orange extract
1/2 cup sanding sugar
1/2 tsp kosher salt

Tequila Glaze
1 cup confectioner's sugar
1 TBsp water
1 TBsp tequila


How to make them:

Cookies
Mix flour and 1/4 tsp salt in a medium bowl, set aside.
Beat butter and granulated sugar in a bowl of an electric mixer on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes.
Add egg, lime peel, extract, and food coloring, mix well.
Gradually, beat in the flour mixture on low speed until well incorporated.
Divide dough in half, form each into a log about 9 inches long and 1 1/2 inches in diameter.
Wrap in wax paper and refrigerate for 1 hour or until firm.
Preheat oven to 350˚F.
Line baking pans with parchment paper.
Roll each cold dough log in the sugar salt mixture to coat evenly.
Cut dough into 1/4 inch thick slices.
Place on the prepared baking pans.
Bake for 12 to 15 minutes or until lightly browned around the edges.
Cool a bit then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
To make the glaze...
Mix 1 cup confectioner's sugar and 1 TBsp each or water and tequila in a small bowl until smooth.
(or omit tequila and use 2 TBsp water)
Drizzle glaze over cooled cookies.
Sprinkle lightly with some sugar/salt mixture. 
Let stand until glaze is set.
ENJOY!

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Friday, July 25, 2014

Take Me Out to the Ball Game....

     After we took Liam to ComicCon we headed back home to gather the rest of the family and head out to the diamond for a fun filled night of Missions' baseball!  My mom had gotten some really good tickets on Groupon, right down the first base line.  They were so close, a little too close.  We all had to stay alert just in case a foul ball was hit our way or a bat got loose from the batter (which, by the way DID happen that night, thank God it was on the other side!).  We used to go to see the San Antonio Missions all the time when I was younger, so I was really excited to take the kiddos, since it was their first one!  They didn't follow the game much, but Kinley LOVED watching the mascot dance around the stadium. 


We all had a great time!

My wonderful family!


Little Miss watching the B


My sister, nephew and her friend cheering for the Missions!


7th inning stretch...time to sing "Take me out to the Ballgame" and eat some Cracker Jacks!
Oh, by the way...Liam got an official ball from one of the players!


To make it even more fun...I brought some glow bracelets, necklaces, rings, and silly glasses for us all to wear!  They looked cool when it got dark!


Game over.....Missions won, 3-2!


It was another fun night with family and friends.  
Can't wait to take them to another game...but might wait a little bit so they will be older.
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Thursday, July 24, 2014

Daddy's Little Lady


     The other day I had to take some pictures of the hubby for a project I'm working on for the kiddos when he deploys.  After getting his shots, little miss decided to put on daddy's hat so I snapped away and got these ADORABLE pictures.  Sometimes you get the best pictures on an impromptu photo shoot!




Loving all her cutie faces!

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Wednesday, July 23, 2014

My Little Military Brats

     Since the hubby will be deploying for 7 months, I thought I would do a little military inspired photo shoot with the kiddos.  I planned on printing out a bunch of pictures and putting them into a photo album that he can take with him.  I haven't done a photo shoot in awhile, so dressed the kiddos up in his uniform and headed outside.  I think they turned out super cute and something he will treasure while he is gone.




One of my favorites!



This is another one of my favorites.








I ain't gonna lie....it will be a LONG 7 months!  
But having my littles will definitely make the time go by faster.

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Saturday, July 19, 2014

Father's Day Gifts

      Have you ever gone on Pinterest and found a photo idea and thought, "Hey I can do that"?  I do it all the time.  Well, I thought I would give it a try again for some Father's Day gifts.  Of course, the photo shoot doesn't always go as what you plan in your head.  And you have to take LOTS of pictures before finally getting "the one."  So here's some cute outtake photos that aren't "the ones."

I tried recreating the Foot Photo on Pinterest.
They sooooo didn't get the concept and kept giggling or not keeping their feet straight.


I finally had to bribe them with food to get them to somewhat sit still....


Then I wanted to do a picture for their Papa.
But Mr. kept giving me silly faces and Little Miss wanted to roll around.



I finally got a some shots to use, then edited them.  
I printed four 4x6 pictures and put them in a frame to spell out the word "PAPA."


As for the hubby's father day gift...I just had to do some cropping and editing.
Turned out pretty cute!



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