First Try at Ribs!!

1 rack of Baby Back Ribs

Lawry’s: Seasoned Salt

Great Value: Organic Garlic Powder

Trader Joe’s Smoked Paprika

Great Value: Organic Hickory BBQ Seasoning

Mrs. Dash: Salt-Free Original Blend

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  2. Clean thawed ribs (I removed some of the fat), then season however you like. I don’t really eat ribs unless they are off of a grill (or unless my grandma cooks them. She insisted I take a rack and they were halfway thawed so I said why not.
  3. To mock that grilled/smoked taste, I rubbed the smoked pap and hickory BBQ on it first, then the seasoned salt, garlic powder, then the Mrs. Dash. Baked for 30-40 minutes (my grandma said 30 but, I did 40 and they still came out fairly well. She also said to use tenderizer, but I didn’t have any so..

Came out delicious, I guess it was all in how well I rubbed in the spices because it tasted like I marinated the ribs over night.  For my first time making ribs, I did a good job. As you can see I don’t have actual measurements for how much seasoning. I am able to measure just by looking (I can obviously tell when enough is enough).

I know that is something I need to work on and I don’t normally eat this heavy. But everything in moderation right? But I do like well seasoned food. In other words, I like to taste my spices and seasonings in every bite. I guess I had a sweet tooth, because after they were finished, I added a hint of brown sugar on top and took the left over oils from the bottom of the pan I cooked the asparagus to coat the brown sugar to I guess caramelize into the ribs. I didn’t taste the asparagus on the ribs at all.

I sauteed asparagus in olive oil, salt, and pepper for about 5-7 minutes.

I also baked corn on the cob provided by my grandma (she provided this whole meal minus the asparagus— found that in the fridge). That recipe I got from pinterest.

The cookies were prepackaged from Walmart, Tollhouse brand I believe, also amazing! This meal was great and if you try it, please let me know how it turned out in the comments.

Bonus Tips:

 

  1. I heard Gordon Ramsey say fat’s only purpose on meat is to help maintain flavor while meat is cooking—it should be cut off and disregarded after cooked (steaks and ribs for example).
  2. My grandma said spraying over your ribs after seasoning them helps to keep them from drying out while in the oven. Indeed she was right!

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Honey Garlic Chicken

Last Saturday Night I made:

Honey Garlic Chicken with Carrots and Red Potatoes 

with Steamed Broccoli and Uncle Ben’s Brown Rice With Cheese and Broccoli

I think it turned out fairly well. It personally could have had more seasoning in the recipe so with the soy sauce I added Goya and Mrs. Dash: Garlic and Herb Seasoning, without going overboard. Additionally, I could’ve left the Steamed Broccoli out as I already had carrots… the Rice too because of the Red Potatoes (laughs). No wonder Tamia was knocked out and I still felt a few hours later..

PS. I love my slow cooker.

Enjoy!

Hawaiian Shoyu Chicken

I’ve been c r a v i n g A slow cooker meal. I was browsing Pinterest when I came across this recipe.

Here’s the ingredients I used to make this meal I forgot to add the organic carrots I purchased from Whole Foods. I needed to use them before they wouldn’t go bad. I thought it’d go well with the dish (and it did).

Serving Size: 6-8

Ingredients:

3 lb boneless skinless chicken thighs

1½ C soy sauce (I used 1 C)

1½ C water

1½ C sugar (I used brown sugar)

1½ tbsp Worcestershire sauce

¼ tsp red pepper flakes

2 in piece fresh ginger, chopped

2 cloves garlic, minced

Sauce (I did not make sauce)

¼ C soy sauce

¼ C water

¼ C + 2 tbsp sugar

I added carrots which I chopped and grated. I marinated the ingredients together in the refrigerator for an hour. 

I cooked on high for 4 hours. So good!

Sautéed Shrimp & Asparagus Over California Jasmine Rice

So I save a lot of recipe tutorials that I find on Facebook, but this one in particular caught my eye because I love shrimp and asparagus. This recipe was quick and easy, two things that are crucial to me because my daughter takes up most of my time! But I thought it was missing something… a carb (laughs). So I picked my favorite, white jasmine rice that I came across after visiting Whole Foods. I will say this, I didn’t follow the recipe to the T. 

Wait, let me explain. I bought all of the ingredients. But instead of reviewing the recipe like I wanted. I jumped up right after I put baby down for a nap (afraid she’d wake up at any moment), and went solely off of memory and it still turned out well.

Prep Time: about 10-15 minutes

1 lb uncooked shrimp 

1 bunch of asparagus 

1 c white rice

1 lemon (for juice)

Fresh ginger

Freshly minced garlic 

It didn’t take long to prep. I say roughly 12 minutes because I had to thaw out my shrimp. To do that I just placed my bag of shrimp into my strainer, and ran cold water over them, tossing them for an even thawing out, until the ice had melted. I didn’t use warm water because I found that higher temperature can begin to cook (pink coloration is an indication of that). I also cut off & disposed of the asparagus ends, and cut the asparagus in half to fit in the pan (rinse them first). I heated 1 tbsp of olive oil on medium heat and tossed my shrimp in with 2 tsp of red pepper, ground peppercorn medley, and a dash of sea salt. I did begin to cook my jasmine rice adding a tbsp of blue bonnet butter & a tsp of lemon pepper for taste. I’ve been taught one of the best ways to cook jasmine rice is to let it cook. Do not stir (I will stir as its finishing up (the bottom will stick if I don’t) when majority of the water is absorbed. If you have any suggestions on how not to burn the rice, please let me know (maybe I should turn my eye down?) in the comments below! This batch I was able to avoid burning by adding a little more water and stirring as it finished cooking down. I also did pre-rinse the rice because I noticed it wasstarchy the first time I cooked it with kabobs (I should’ve blogged that recipe—so good). 

In the meantime, I did remove my shrimp after cooking, and adding my favorite, Kikoman’s soy sauce (original recipe said 2 tbsp), but since I added sea salt, I cut that down to 1 tbsp (forgot the soy sauce was needed after I already added the salt). I added the soy sauce immediately into the skillet to blend into the flavors of the crushed red peppers and peppercorn medley. I then added the asparagus, cooking for 2-3 minutes (I wanted the crunch of the vegetable in tact & Voilà! The end result. 

For the original recipe, brought to you by Tasty! of BuzzFeed, click here!

 

 

Meals Gone WRONG (Ep. 101)

I found this recipe on Pinterest after  recently discovering chicken thighs are cheaper than chicken breasts. It was supposed to be Jamaican Jerk Chicken. But due to lack of ingredients (and a lot of times I don’t allow this to stop me from making the dish, I just substitute for something close to it—in this case I should have left it alone), and the fact that it was 3 pm and I hadn’t eaten all day, I decided to half-ass and wing it. Let me tell you what I substituted:

  1. I used Olive oil instead of Canola (it said that or a cooking oil so I used what I had)
  2. Chicken stock instead of chicken broth (again did not have broth and I assumed they were the same— though in the back of my mind, I always questioned if there was a difference… You better believe I found out on this day)

It was so oily! No flavor at all. Turns out the stock and the olive oil were doing the same things. Next time I’ll make sure I have broth. I lightly seasoned the chicken because I thought the stock would act like broth, giving it more flavor. 

The chicken, onion, and potatoes cooked thoroughly but that taste! No.. So I tweaked it.. A lot

I drained tge dish of the excess oils, reseasoned it, and popped it in the oven uncovered then added wild rice to absorb some of the oils still in tact with the food. 

Added some steamed veggies (favorite side) and saved the dish! 

I was scared I would have to throw it out, and being that we are low on funds until I start working (which won’t be for another month), I thought we’d starve! But everyone liked it and I made enough for leftovers. 

Whew!

That’s my horror story. 

Until Next Time (& there will be plenty more),

T.

Smoothies 

I’ve been off of my smoothie game lately! This morning I thought I’d share my breakfast with you guys.
Rise & Shine Smoothie                                                 My ingredients are usually raw, or natural (nothing packeged, or processed) but I decided to go against my normal smoothie guidelines and add a meal replacement in it as well. The breakfast essentials packed a lot of protein. Now that I think about, so did the soy milk (laughs). Oh well, the chocolate flavoring went well with the banana. On a healthy note, it also packed:

  • 21 vitamins & minerals 
  • 13g of protein
  • 2x the calcium
  • 2x the vitamin D

Blueberry-Banana Smoothie
My usual smoothie would consist of 

  • 1 banana (potassium)
  • 1/4 c of blueberries (antioxidants)
  • 3 spoonfuls of Greek Yogurt
  • 1 c soy milk
  • 1 tbsp honey


I’ve been using MyFitnessPal for the past month to keep track of my calories. What I love about this app is that I was able to tailor my plan based off of my input my goals. When inputting my meals, I can scan the barcode of my ingredients and it’ll auto fill the nutritional information. It’ll also inform me it’s nutritional values, when an ingredient is high or low in a vitamin or mineral, and when I’ve reached my macros goal(s), which makes me feel accomplished. Even if I’m preparing a dish, I can create a recipe putting it in as a whole— I cook family sized dishes, and it’ll recalculate the meal as 1 serving.


The MyFitnessPal also offers a sister app, MapMyRun that uses your location to measure distance and time of my workout. Now this one I haven’t used yet. I haven’t ran in sometime, but enjoyed running on a track. Where I live most tracks are connected to the schools and the public is prohibited from using it during school hours. Well yesterday was the last day of school so I have the entire summer to utilize it! I’m excited and nervous at the same time. But I will start running again next week.

Until Next Time,

T.

Now when I cook, I make it count.

  
Since giving birth, I have to find time to do the things I enjoy. I’ve realized how much I took advantage of the little things in life. So I try to have fun when I’m doing normal day to day activities like cooking:

So, I decided one night I’d make dinner (I was very hungry and never have time to do this daily), and this is what I chose to make:

Pan-seered Salmon with potatoes & onions and steamed Brussels 

4 pieces of frozen salmon

Salt & Pepper 

Goya

Smoked Paprika

2 Garlic cloves 

1/3 c chopped mushrooms 

Vegetable oil (ran out of olive)

Butter

Pan-Seered Salmon 

I used frozen salmon so of course I let it thaw over night in the fridge, then I seasoned it with light salt & pepper on one side, & Goya on the other (I’m weird like that). And let marinate for 30 minutes.

Red Potatoes w mushroom, garlic, & onion

I chopped and rinsed 3 medium red potatoes and cooked them in a pan with 3 tsp of vegetable oil (I usually use olive but ran out). I first added the garlic (which burned a little— I forgot it cooks quick should’ve put that in last?) but anywho I cooked it until it was kind of browned and wasn’t translucent. 

As for the Brussels, I bought the bag of steamable vegetables (pop them in the microwave for 5 minutes faced down, added butter and pepper

Voila! Dinner is served.