New Flavors

I received a package from Tostitos as part of the FoodBuzz Tastemakers program.  Frito Lay is trying to change its image from the greasy artificially flavored chips of yesterday to a wider selection of “natural chips”IMG_0912

I got both Fire-Roasted Chipotle and Black Bean and Garlic.  The ingredient list was pretty decent as well.IMG_0913

I’m not a fan of the new law that permits companies to only write “Natural Flavors” when the ingredient is less than a certain percentage of the product.  I would classify these as healthier Cool Ranch Doritos, which I had a serious love for in my previous unhealthy life.  These seriously taste like those chips without the fake green and red flecks all over them.

I wanted to create something different with the chips than using them as a dipper to salsa.

I opted for bean burgers!

I started by crushing up some of the chips in a baggie.

IMG_0914

I mixed the chips with some mashed adzuki beans that I had cooked earlier in the week.  No need to add any other seasoning these chips have enough!

15min each side in the oven at 350 and we are done!IMG_0916

These tasted just like the chips with added protein!  I paired it with a bunch of veggies to balance it out.

IMG_0915

These chip are delicious, and I am glad that many snack food companies are feeling the pressure from the market to create healthier options for consumers.  If you love Doritos and want something you won’t feel as guilty about, try these!

Now I just need to make sure I do not eat them all before Katherine gets here on Friday so we can have chips and Margaritas!


I Am Still Trying To Cook!

I know I have recently been writing only about wedding things and forgetting about food, but I am still trying to eat normally and not let the stress negatively impact the way I was running my life before!  My hope is to have a photographer, caterer and dress by April 3rd…fingers and toes crossed!!!!

Back to the food!

I usually don’t eat much tofu, but I saw it at Whole Foods this weekend and it sounded good.

IMG_0910

I mixed up some olive oil and curry powder then brushed it on thin slices of tofu and coated one side in sesame seeds.  Baked at 350 for 45min – I like my fu crunchy!

Along with my curry fu I roasted and entire turnip and a portabella mushroom.IMG_0911

All together on my wedding vision board!

IMG_0909

I obviously have a lot of space to fill!

What detail at a wedding you have attended made it stick out from others?


Wedding Weekend Adventures!

Weekend successes, well sort of.  I didn’t find a dress totally because the only one I would consider buying is at the top of my price range and it needs some alterations.  I like chiffon, sheath, soft and airy dresses.  They turned off the lights in the salon so that one girl could “see herself sparkle” and it was hard for me to laugh.  Oh and I do not do trains.  Trains + barn wood + dirt = poop on my dress or a snag.  I think we might have made more progress in the bridesmaids dresses by actually seeing the colors of the fabrics and what is out there, and it was definitely a great place to start.

After dresses it was on to Lancaster to hangout with 20,000 quilters – no joke it was the national quilters convention.

We checked out the Central Market to see local bakeries and just to get a feel of the town and then headed over to look at a bed a breakfast for the wedding party to stay in.  Being able to be close to the wedding party was one of Nick’s favorite parts of the other location so we wanted to find that again.

We needed to find a place with 7 rooms, which is kind of hard for B&Bs, but we found one and booked it!

The best part of the place is the porch!

IMG_0907

They also have a nice garden that will be great for pictures and Dave and Gerry (the owners) are totally cool with having the photographer all over their property.  Nick and I have a really nice room with a separate dressing room which will be great for the day of the wedding considering the Rock Ford does not have a dressing room in the barn.  The best part is that it is only 2 miles from the plantation and we found a Marriott for most of our guests to stay in that is 1 mile away and in the middle of historic downtown Lancaster.

Once we had the B&B squared away my mom and I headed over to Rock Ford so that she could see the place!IMG_0904

I love it even more now and I am so excited!  How could I not love a place that has this in the rafters?!!?IMG_0899

When I saw “H” and “N” in the rafters I knew that this would have to be where we got married.

I don’t want to give to many pictures so that guests will not know where they are going exactly, but one decoration I am playing with is origami.  I saw a picture of cranes hanging from the ceiling of a reception and I thought that would be a fun and interesting idea to play with.  I obviously cannot do cranes, but I have been trying to make flowers.  These are what I have came up with – note I would get double sided color paper and get my colors.

IMG_0908

What do you think?  Cheesy? Tacky?  Could we pull them off?

Two weeks until Katherine is here to go to J.Crew weddings with me!


Better In Plan Than Construction

I have seen chard leaves used a wrappers for many things around blogland so I thought tonight would be a good time for me to try it out!

I bought a giant bag of carrots this weekend so I knew I wanted to use them in the wrap, now I just need a protein – enter the lentil!

First I washed the chard leaves and cut them in half (these are massive).

IMG_0884

I peeled two carrots and filled the leaves with them equally.

After the carrots I added the lentils and a special sauce.IMG_0885

Nutritional yeast, tomato sauce and hot chili sauce – this is where I went wrong because this sauce is too watery.  Next time I would use tomato paste instead of sauce.IMG_0886

Wrap it up and serve it up!IMG_0887

I would like to roll these a little better next time.  Ashley seemed to have a lot of luck with her breakfast chard leaves so I am going to her method out next time.  Either way the leaves were a nice shell and not bitter at all, there was just way too much water.

WEDDING UPDATE

Nick and I have booked an venue!

We are getting married at the Rock Ford Plantation in Lancaster PA!  I have looked into pricing for invitations (we plan to make our own), I should be better two quotes from caterers soon and I am going dress shopping this weekend!  Our color is parrot/wild apple (I think) with Maryland wildflower colors as our accent colors.  I wanted a fall orange but then realized I didn’t want to limit myself because you never know what they will have in September!

Lots of stuff going on this weekend besides dresses.  My mom and I are going to Rock Ford to check out the actual measurements and logistics of where things will take place.  We are also going to check out hotels and B&Bs in the area!  So exciting!!!!


Panacea

Every year my mom and I take a trip to escape the winter blues.  Last year we went to Sanibel Island and this year we made our way down to Costa Rica.  We wanted to stay some place that was NOT  a resort (I despise children on vacation) and we wanted something that was actual “eco-tourism” – a word that gets used way too much these day.  What I found was seven days of pure bliss at  Panacea de la Montana.  I loved how the owners interacted with their guests and wanted to get to know them.  The three owners each had a special place on the mountain and seemed to work in perfect harmony.  It was a great day starting with yoga at 7 with Mary, breakfast at 9 made by Debbie, at 10 you had the option to head to the beaches, go on another adventure or just sit by the pool and relax.  Lunch was at 1 followed by water aerobics at 3 taught by Debbie and dinner at 6:30.  For all the time in between you were able to do whatever floated your boat and they were more than willing to set you up on a more personalized look at Costa Rica – we rode horses at their friends ranch and went on an off road beach tour with another local.  If you are looking for a great place to relax and be treated like the best guest ever, you should seriously check out the Panacea.

This is our adventure through pictures…lots of pictures.

Enjoy.

La Cabina – Amistad – no tv, phone or internet – none needed.

IMG_0804

IMG_0802

IMG_0805

IMG_0803

La Playa – Tamarindo – day one.

IMG_0812IMG_0813IMG_0806IMG_0809IMG_0811IMG_0815IMG_0818

Mom hanging out in the pool and the view from the hammock on our cabina at sunset

IMG_0820IMG_0821IMG_0822

Local Flavor –Debbie made us breakfast, lunch and dinner EVER day.  It was amazing local vegetarian food.

IMG_0825IMG_0827IMG_0882

IMG_0838IMG_0836IMG_0844IMG_0851IMG_0861IMG_0867

Local wildlife

IMG_0874IMG_0868IMG_0869

IMG_0859IMG_0856IMG_0843

IMG_0842IMG_0828IMG_0870

Adventures – Estuary tour, horseback riding, hiking

IMG_0853

IMG_0857

The pineapple there was amazing!IMG_0839

IMG_0840

Hike up the major hill in my vibrams…do not tell my orthopedist!IMG_0832IMG_0833IMG_0830IMG_0831

Costa Rica is hot!  Bring some SPF and a hat.

Beautiful things –

IMG_0837IMG_0834IMG_0824

IMG_0845IMG_0847IMG_0848IMG_0849

IMG_0873

IMG_0872

yeah we got crafty! (2 above are mine, one below is my wedding motto!)IMG_0860

IMG_0871IMG_0862IMG_0863IMG_0864

Where we spent most of our time when we were on the mountain.

IMG_0865IMG_0875IMG_0876IMG_0878

Beautiful beaches that we were only able to see thanks to Tinica who showed us the way.

IMG_0866

Back stairs to the cabina aka serious glute workout.

 

IMG_0879

Final sunset in Costa Rica.  I hope the people who are developing it at all angles realize the mistakes people have made in developing other countries and try and treat the land with respect.  I am worried about Costa Rica, but it is nice to know there are good people looking out for the place.

Namaste.IMG_0826

Hi Peter, Mary and Debbie!  I hope you all are doing well!