Cooking, Baking & Cocktail Shaking

Slice of Life Saturday’s ~ Go Away Winter!

It’s Saturday… Can I get a woot woot?

Squirrel is off in the woods somewhere trying to catch dinner–I won’t hold my breath. That was a touch mean, wasn’t it? The thing is, he loves to fish, but he never actually catches anything. Mama needs some bacon in order to fry it up in the pan. You feel me?

No fish. No dinner. Well, that’s not exactly true. I’m not going to starve on account of Squirrel not being able to hook a dang trout. Our meal will just have to come from the store instead.

While Squirrel is out getting in touch with Mother Nature and his wild side, I’m enjoying a little alone time. Just me and a glass of wine. Oh, and the two wild beasts giving me the stare down from across the room. I’m just going to look the other way, pretend they’re not there.

I wish I had something exciting to report. However,  I got nothing. I’ve been caged up like an animal inside my house, staying warm and dry. This winter has been brutal. Polar vortexes (is that the correct spelling?), arctic blasts, a bazillion inches of snow. My puny body isn’t built for the cold.

I’ve been walking around the house wrapped in layers of warmth since December. It’s a survival tactic I learned from Squirrel. If you get hot, you peel off a layer–kind of like an onion. Only I’m a good lookin’ onion. I’ve learned how to hide my layers. Squirrel, on the other hand, wears basketball shorts over thermal pants and fancy sweaters over t-shirts. If you saw him like that in the real world, you would do a double take before high-tailing it in the opposite direction.

The only exciting thing happening around these parts is food, lots and lots of food. And booze. Let’s not forget about the booze. Booze wards off cold, especially bourbon. Bourbon warms your innards.

Squirrel and I recently discovered bison. There’s a local farm 30 minutes from our house. Bison are said to be dangerous animals, and from the looks of the 7,000 volt fence that keep the bison from wandering off, they must be. However, they’re so cute—huge, but cute. When we visited the farm, they were all huddled up together in the middle of the field. Tell me that isn’t adorable. I wanted to pole vault over the fence and pat them each on the head.

Speaking of meat, I gave it up for lent. I’ve been doing surprisingly well. If I could get my brain to forget about steak and burgers, I would take the plunge into vegetarianism. I’ve been eating a lot of hearty salads, kale and spinach smoothies, and roasted veggies. I have even gone so far as to borrowing a few vegetarian books from the library. I also follow several vegetarian and semi-vegetarian blogs. My favorites are Oh My Veggies, Dishing up the Dirt, The Roasted Root, Cookie & Kate, Oh She Glows, and Sprouted Kitchen.

I got bored one day and set up a kitty photo shoot with my main man Watson. He wasn’t exactly what you would call thrilled, but, I give him credit, he tolerated the camera in his face longer than I anticipated.

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I tested several recipes this winter. Only, I can’t remember which recipes I tested and who’s site they were from. I’m sorry.

The handful I  do remember trying were very good. Here’s a list:

Cinnamon Sugar Bagels from A Kitchen Addiction- These are good bagels. The outside is chewy. The inside is soft and slightly sweet with swirls of cinnamon sugar love. Definitely a must try. I still have two waiting for me in the freezer.

Roasted Tomato Salsa from Simply Scratch- I can’t say enough good things about Laurie. She really is an amazing cook, writer, and photographer. I stalk her almost every day. This salsa is so fresh. If you ever find yourself with the winter blues, make salsa.

Ravioli and Italian Sausage Skillet from Damn Delicious- If you’re looking for a quick meal that comes together in less than 30 minutes, this is it. Oh my gah, the cheese. There is so much melted cheese goodness happening in this dish. Make it!

Hippe Bowls with Secret Sauce from Dishing up the Dirt- Don’t you just love the name? It’s what attracted me to this dish. Anything with the word “hippie” in has to be delicious. You know what… It is. This recipe is amazing. It’s all about the sauce. The combination of tahini and nutritional yeast is just perfect. One bowl will fill you up and keep you energized.

Chocolate Chip Cookie Energy Bars from Shutterbean- They taste like a cookie, but they’re not a cookie. Either way, this not-so-cookie bar really does taste like a chocolate chip cookie–a healthy, protein packed chocolate chip cookie that’s totally guilt-free. Sold to the cookie-loving gal in the front row (that’s me).

Please excuse me while I inundate you with random photos:

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Go away, snow!

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A lot of reading happened this winter. If you love reading about food, this is the book for you.

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I like big biscuits, and I cannot lie.

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Move over beef, there’s a new meat in town.

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Does my computer case look like a bed? No, no it doesn’t.

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I’m a wee bit in love with my new Starbucks Verismo brewer. Review and giveaway coming soon!

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The only jelly beans for me.

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I ate my weight in homemade bread over the winter.

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When fifty pounds of sugar shows up at your front door, you know it’s going to be a good day. Thank you, Dixie Crystals.

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Kitchen after I destroy it.

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Shhh, don’t tell Squirrel he’s famous. The man loves his condiments.

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Working on my lady guns.

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My new favorite way to hydrate after a workout.

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Maddox conveniently lays on top of my yoga mat as I’m using it.

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Mocha coconut iced coffee–there are no words.

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Prepare for salad.

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I don’t mind if I do. Thank you, Gallo Family Vineyards!

10 Responses to “Slice of Life Saturday’s ~ Go Away Winter!”

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    1
    Tina Muir — March 29, 2014 at 6:55 am

    Totally agree! Go away winter! I think it is almost gone….I hope!

    I am so with you on bison, whenever I see it on the menu, I try to get it, especially burgers. So good! As an elite athlete it is also great for me nutritionally! Will help your workouts :)

    Your bread looks amazing! I have been making homemade bread too, but still in the phase of trying out different recipes, have not found an absolute favorite yet! Do you have a really good one?

    Reply

    • Jennie replied March 29th, 2014 at 8:08 am

      Hi Tina! We are so in love with Bison. The steaks are amazing, but they have to be cooked medium/medium rare or else they’ll be dry. I have a homemade roll recipe that can easily be turned in to a loaf of bread. So easy, so delicious. The bread pictured above is the same roll recipe, only I made it in to a loaf. It’s located under the breads/muffins section of the recipe index. Have a wonderful weekend!

      Reply

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    Laura Dembowski — March 29, 2014 at 8:23 am

    I actually think it’s vortices but I hope to never talk about a polar vortex again so I don’t think it matters. I have barely left the house either. I really need the weather to get better. It’s so depressing and at this point has got me down. I have always wanted to try bison. Glad to hear you like it!

    Reply

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    [email protected] — March 29, 2014 at 8:40 am

    Oh I love these posts! And so excited to check out these new blogs! I’m totally jealous of your yeast party [oh, that might not have sounded right]. Dunkin donuts might be on my to do list this weekend now – I heard they have all new sugar free syrups. And I think wine and jelly beans might be my new snack!

    Reply

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    Kayle (The Cooking Actress) — March 29, 2014 at 9:28 am

    omgosh this winter needs to STOP!

    and I love the mental image of Squirrel in his layers! ha!

    and you brave girl giving up meat for Lent, you’re way stronger than I am!

    Reply

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    Lindsey @ American Heritage Cooking — March 29, 2014 at 11:38 am

    Lol! You computer bag does actually look like cozy, quilted cat bed! Or at least, I’m pretty sure my feline friend would think so!

    I do love reading books about food, restaurant owners, bakers, cookbooks, or really any book with a foodie protagonist…guilty! I’ll be picking up that book tomorrow!

    Reply

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    Choc Chip Uru — March 29, 2014 at 5:30 pm

    That’s because Maddox is so cute, and adorable he is allowed to do what he wants :D
    Ugh your winter sounds awful, hope it leaves soon!!
    And Watson sounds too cool to look thrilled but I bet he was ;)

    Cheers
    Choc Chip Uru

    Reply

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    Melissa — March 30, 2014 at 2:16 am

    Fun post :) Happy Saturday to you! Love the way you’ve given up meat for Lent and incorporated more kale and smoothies into your day. I’m not vegetarian, but sometimes I drop the meat and it’s easier than I think (and my grocery bill goes down!)

    Reply

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    Amber @ Fit Foodie Runs — March 30, 2014 at 8:59 am

    I have to be honest – I’m not big on coconut water..but with pineapple, I think I might give it a try!

    Love your Slice of Saturdays – miss you. Thanks for the smiles this morning, Jennie!

    Reply

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    shannon — April 8, 2014 at 9:28 am

    you just listed a bunch of blogs i need to follow, so thank you for busting my laziness and getting my booty in gear! ugh…so many things fall through the cracks when you’re trying to do too much. :)
    look at you getting your workout on! good for you! and my dog does the same: yoga mat = instant bed.

    Reply

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