Martini Glass Trifles

Okay I have finally assembled the pumpkin gingerbread trifle I have been raving about. (PS…it won the Blogger Secret Ingredient (BSI) Contest that was hosted on Julie’s site.) And I did it in the martini glasses for a fun change of pace. These little individual desserts are so cute and perfect! Check them out:

That's my kind of martini!

So seriously…MAKE THIS! :) I am super passionate about this dessert for some reason, aren’t I? haha! Anyway…off to do more cleaning. The hubs is fantastic…he is getting the Best Mopper Award for sure!

Tomorrow I will post the Crockpot Tortilla Soup I will be making for Christmas Eve. It is definitely a keeper of a recipe and would be perfect in the New Year because it is healthy! You know me! :) Kelly Out!

Busy Busy Busy

Today is going to be a busy day! The hubs and I are going to be CLEANING!! We are hosting Christmas Eve tomorrow night so I must have a sparkling clean house. Thankfully Keith is always willing to help and does his fair share of honey dos! :) Love him!

I am also going to be assembling my trifle today. I am going to do something a little different this year and make individual trifles in martini glasses! FUN! The trifle tastes better if it sits overnight so I will take pictures and post later to show you! I am excited! I also need to boil and shred my chicken today for the Tortilla Soup tomorrow night. I already set my table…look how pretty! Ah, I love the holidays!

Dinner last night was EASY! With all the holiday preparation I have been doing plus keeping my normal work and running (10-12 mile runs everyday) schedule; I haven’t had the desire to cook big dinners at night. So last night we chowed on chicken (simply roasted in the oven with a little olive oil and poultry seasoning) with steamed zucchini and Keith had Amy’s macaroni cheese. Nothing fancy…but it was easy and tasty! Can’t beat that!

Easy Dinner

Are you finished with all your holiday shopping?

I am 100% finished! Yay! But UPS just stopped by and delivered a package that Keith snuck off with mighty quickly!! Hum…wonder who that could be for?!? Happy Wednesday everyone…I will be back later with trifle pictures!! :)

You Just Thought I Was Done…

So you might have thought after my all-day Sunday baking day that I was finished, right? WRONG! Yesterday I made a gluten-free Pumpkin Pie for my hubby (his fave) and Pineapple Meatloaf (another household staple) for dinner. I also made the gingerbread for the Pumpkin Gingerbread Trifle I will be making for Christmas Eve.
 I am also responsible for the Christmas Eve dinner since it is at my house. The menu will be Chicken Tortilla Soup and Tamales! Plus for Christmas Day I am making my traditional Raw Broccoli Salad and a 5-cup Fruit Salad to take to my Mom’s. Okay…now calm down, all of those recipes will be coming in the next few days, but for now let’s stick with the Pumpkin Pie and the Pineapple Meatloaf, shall we?

PUMPKIN PIE (GLUTEN-FREE)

Keith's GF Pumpkin Pie

1 unbaked 9 inch gluten-free pie crust (I use the Whole Foods brand)

3/4 cup sugar

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon ground ginger

1/4 teaspoon ground cloves

2 large eggs

1 can (15 oz) canned 100% pure pumpkin

1 can (12 oz) fat-free evaporated milk

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.

Mix sugar, salt, cinnamon, ginger, and cloves in a small bowl. Beat eggs in a large bowl and stir in pumpkin and spice mixture. Gradually stir in the evaporated milk. Pour into pie shell.

Bake at 425 degrees for 15 minutes. Reduce temperature to 350 degrees and bake for another 40-50 minutes (or until knife inserted comes out clean).  Cool on a wire rack for 2 hours and either serve or refrigerate.

Serves: 8

247.3 Calories; 6.8g Fat (2.3g saturated fat); 55mg Cholesterol; 323.7mg Sodium; 41.2g Carbohydrate; 3.5g Fiber; 29.3g Sugar; 7.1g Protein

PINEAPPLE MEATLOAF

Meatloaf with a Pineapple Twist

1 egg, beaten

1/4 cup steel-cut oats (or 1/2 cup regular oats)

1/2 onion, finely chopped

1/2  red bell pepper (or any color of your choice)

1/4  teaspoon salt

1 pound lean ground beef

8 ounces crushed pineapple, drained

BBQ sauce

Combine egg, oats, onion, bell pepper and salt. Add beef and pineapple. Mix well. Place in a 8 x 8 baking dish and bake uncovered at 350 degrees for 35 to 40 minutes or until meat is no longer pink. Top with BBQ sauce and bake for another 3 minutes.

Yields: 4 servings

CALORIES 235.9; FAT 8.6g (3.4g saturated fat); CHOLESTEROL 118.1mg; SODIUM 138.6mg; CARBOHYDRATE 13g; FIBER 1.4g; SUGAR 7.1g; PROTEIN 26.6g

 

Christmas Bake Day

Yesterday I spent the entire day at my mom’s house doing our Christmas baking!! It was so fun but we were pooped afterwards! Especially my mom…she did most of the work..such a good mom! :) So here is what we made:
Candied Pecans
Praline Pecans

 Hello Dolly Bars

7-Layer Bars

 The Classics

Sugar Cookies

Texas Trash

Jim’s Favorite!

Cherry Berry Oatmeal Cookies

 Cocoa Drops (these are my favorites!!)

 Chinese Haystack Cookies

Peanut Butter Classics

 

We also made fudge but I forgot to snap a picture of it! :( Boo!

But it wasn’t all work…we played some too!

My laughing Mama!

Self Portaits are BEST!
Tasting Time!

All in all it was a GREAT day!! Cheers!  

“I Have An Addiction, Sir!”

That is one of my all time favorite lines from Sex in the City….used when Carry is referring to her smoking habit! :) So what are you addicted to? You have the devil on one side and the angel on the other…two sides of the same coin! What things do you love that cross that boundary?

Here are 3 of mine:

  1. I absolutely love GTS Kombucha! It is so good and super good for you…hence the angel…but it is SO DANG expensive ($3.59 a bottle)…hence the devil.
  2. Raisins or pretzels (the angel) covered in dark chocolate (the devil)! Nestle Flipz and Raisinettes are my favorite movie watching candies!!
  3. An angel of a nut, the pecan, baked in a devilishly good pecan pie!! I need my own this Christmas! :)

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HOW ACTIVE ARE YOU?

Do you have a hard time being motivated to work out? Check out this quiz, Barriers to Being Active, provided by the CDC (Center for Disease Control and Prevention). It will show what barrier you need to overcome to start on the road to being a more active individual! Pretty cool! Speaking of active…check out this cute photo of Keith! Can you guess what he is about to do??

Mountain Biking Ready!

The “Still Perfect” Day-After!

I have three words for everyone this morning…14 and 0!!!! I love my Colts! Can you actually believe I stayed up and watched the entire Indy/Jacksonville game? It was a nail biter but in the end the Colts stayed perfect! Yay!!

Who is your celebrity crush?

Mine is most definitely Peyton Manning and Keith’s is Drew Barrymore.

Dinner last night was salmon. Now I must admit that I am not a huge salmon lover and usually when I make salmon for Keith (he loves it) I make myself another kind of fish (typically orange ruffy, tilapia, or ahi…those are my faves). But last night all we had was salmon…so salmon I ate. :) But I figured I might as well make it as tasty as I could, right? And here is one of those recipes that actually makes me enjoy it! I served it alongside steamed broccoli and cauliflower and I will admit it was a tasty little meal! :)

BALSAMIC GLAZED SALMON

4 pieces salmon filets

2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

2 tablespoons honey

1 1/2 tablespoons Dijon or grainy mustard

2 teaspoons sesame oil

1-2 teaspoon sesame seed (optional)

  

Preheat oven to 450F.

Place salmon, skin-side down, on a foil-lined baking dish.

 In a bowl, stir vinegar with honey, mustard and oil. Spoon over salmon.

 Sprinkle with sesame seeds, if using.  Bake in centre of 450F oven until fish flakes with a fork from 11 to 12 minutes.

 Serves: 4

424 CALORIES; 13.4g FAT (2.1g saturated fat); 165mg CHOLESTEROL; 276mg SODIUM; 9.1g CARBOHYDRATES; 0.2g FIBER; 8.8g SUGAR; 63.7g PROTEIN

 Happy Friday…I hope everyone has a great day!!

GF Product Reviewst

Happy Thursday! Sheesh…I can’t believe it is already Thursday. Where has the week gone? Let’s start with dinner last night. It was an easy one: Applegate Farms organic turkey burgers on gluten-free Udi bread and some organic Alexia french fries that I bake in the oven. Served up with a side of steamed broccoli and we were good to go!
 

 

Okay so on to the important part of the post! It is no secret that Keith and I eat mostly gluten-free. When I say mostly, I mean we live about 90% gluten-free. We eat mostly raw and natural foods but when we do turn to processed foods we try to go the GF route. With that said, there are a lot of gluten-free products on the market and quite honestly some of them taste REALLY bad! Well I figured to save some of you the trouble I would give you some of my top GF foods that really taste excellent!! Consider these your Kelly and Keith tested and taste approved!! I know the list looks long but remember all of these things are eaten in MODERATION.  Try to stay as raw and natural (fresh fruits, veggies, and proteins) as possible!!

Also go to my post on Gluten-Free Dining Out for a complete list of Austin restaurants that offer gluten-free menus! Yay! Or go to the Gluten Free Registry and just type in your zip code to find restaurants, bakeries, caterers, and grocers in your area!

 Breads

  •  Best Sandwich Bread:  Udi Bread. This bread is so fluffy and tasty and the best part is that you don’t have to keep it frozen!!! It tastes great right from the pantry.
  •  Best Breakfast Bread: Glutino Cinnamon Raisin Bread. You have to keep this frozen but it toasts nicely and is delish!
  • Best Bagels: Glutino Bagels. These are AWESOME! They are large so you can easily only eat half and be totally content!
  • Best Pizza Crust: This is a toss-up between Udi’s and Whole Foods Gluten Free brand. Both are good for different reasons. If you want a cracker type crust go for the Udi’s but for those of you who like a little more fluffy crust go for Whole Foods. Both rock!
  • Best Pasta: Tinkyada Brown Rice Pasta. They have a huge product inventory with all kind of noodles for whatever pasta dish you want to make!

Chips/Crackers/Snacks/Cookies:

Best Cereal

  • Keith’s pick: Leapin Lemurs (KIDS CEREAL!) by Nature’s Path. This cereal is a mixture of chocolate and peanutbutter puffs. I think they are okay but they taste gluten-free to me.
  • Kelly’s pick: Mine is a toss-up between Multigrain Puffins by Barbara’s Bakery or plain old KIX cereal by General Mills.

Best Bars:

Best Baking Mixes:

  • Best Pancake (all-purpose mix): Pamela’s! One word: WOW!
  • Best Brownie Mix: Namaste. These brownies are amazing. We always have a batch on hand and we just keep them in the freezer and pop them in the microwave to heat them back to gooey goodness
  • Flour: Bob Red Mill’s All Purpose Baking Flour is great for most recipes! Anytime you see a recipe that calls for all-purpose flour you can always sub this in! I do!

Also remember to READ your labels for your soups, condiments (ketchup, mustard, BBQ sauce, salsa, you know) etc. and look for it to say Gluten-Free. Unfortunately, most things are gluten-free by product brand rather than by product. For example Sara Lee turkey lunch meat is gluten-free but that doesn’t mean that Oscar Meyer is. Confusing, yes!

You can ALWAYS email me with questions about certain products and I will help you decifer if it is gluten-free! I hope this is helpful for everyone! 

 Alright…time for my lunch! PEACE OUT! :)

Even More Cookies?!?

It’s the holidays people…so forgive all the cookie posts! :) But I want to be able to provide you guys with alternatives to traditional fat-laden holiday desserts! These cookies are AWESOME! I got the recipe from a sweet woman, Pam, who is a member of a weekly healthy recipe & cooking email I am a part of. So add these onto your holiday baking list…you will NOT be disappointed! With that…I hope everyone is having a Happy Hump Day!

CHOCOLATE COVERED CHERRY COOKIES

1½ cup flour

½ cup unsweetened cocoa powder

¼ tsp salt

¼ tsp baking soda

¼ tsp baking powder

½ cup softened butter

1 cup sugar

1 egg

1 ½ tsp vanilla

1 10 oz jar maraschino cherries

1 6 oz package semi sweet chocolate chips

½ cup sweetened condensed milk

 

 Combine flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a large mixing bowl.  Set aside.

 In another bowl, beat butter and sugar on low-speed until fluffy.  Add egg and vanilla and beat until blended.

 Gradually add in flour mixture until smooth.

 Shape into 1 inch balls by rolling a small amount of dough between your palms.  Place on an ungreased cookie sheet.

 Using your thumb, make an indentation in each ball.  Drain cherries, reserving juice, and cut cherries in half.  Place  half of a cherry in the indentation of each cookie.

 For frosting: In a small sauce pan combine chocolate chips and condensed milk.  Heat over low heat until chocolate is melted.  Add 1 Tbsp and 1 tsp of reserved cherry juice and stir.  Spoon about 1 tsp frosting over each cherry, spreading to cover the cherry.  If frosting gets too thick, add a little more juice.  Note:  Frost the cookies before baking.

 Bake cookies at 350 for 10 – 12 minutes.  Cool on a wire rack.

 Makes 48 cookies

Per Cookies: 87.7 CALORIES; 3.3g FAT (2.17g saturated fat); 11.48mg CHOLESTEROL; 30.5mg SODIUM; 12.1g CARBOHYDRATES; 0.7g FIBER; 7.8g SUGAR; 1.25g PROTEIN

I’m sending these to Susan, from Food Blogga for her Christmas Cookie Roundup! Click here to find out how to submit your own recipe (hurry, time’s running out!), and click here for the roundup and more ideas!

 

Holidays! Holidays! Holidays!

Happy Tuesday!! I had an awesome 10 mile run this morning (although it was EARLY!!)  I was on the treadmill at 5:00 a.m. because I had to get finished and rush to the dentist by 8:00! Verdict: PERFECT TEETH! Yay! Dinner last night was nothing special…I revisited my fish sandwich because it was easy, healthy and convenient.  Also yesterday I finished my annual “Holiday Letter!”

Do you have any special holiday traditions? On mine and Keith’s first Christmas together (as a married couple) I wrote him a personal “holiday letter” that just recapped our year. It has become a tradition that every year I write Keith a holiday letter and I read it aloud to him every Christmas morning. It has become a sweet moment that we share…just us. I So now that I finished, I am SO excited to read it to him next week!

 Question: What is your own special holiday tradition?

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BREAKOUT RECIPE: HOLIDAY APPETIZER

Spinach Artichoke Dip

1 package (10 ounces) frozen spinach
1 bag (14 ounces) frozen artichokes
2 8 ounce packages light cream cheese
1 T lemon juice
1 small onion, minced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/3 c parmesan cheese
1/2 t red-pepper flakes
1/2 t oregano
salt, pepper to taste
nonstick cooking spray
(Optional garnishes: minced red bell pepper or chopped tomatoes)

Spray a medium pot with nonstick cooking spray. Add garlic and onions and cook over medium heat until they’re translucent, about five minutes.

Put thawed and drained frozen spinach in food processor and pulse a few times to chop. Add artichokes and pulse a few more times. The mixture should be chunky.

Add spinach and artichokes to pot, along with cream cheese, oregano, red pepper and lemon juice. Heat until bubbly, then add parmesan cheese and salt and pepper to taste. Garnish with red bell pepper or tomato (if desired) Serve immediately.

Number of Servings: 20 (2 tablespoons)

65.9 Calories; 4.2g Fat; 13.3mg Cholesterol; 192.3mg Sodium; 3.8g Carbohydrate; 0.9g Fiber; 3.8g Protein

Running Rules

Here are some running rules and information from Runner’s World magazine. As a runner I thought these were VERY appropriate and something I think everyone should read. :) haha…enjoy!

RUNNING RULES OF THUMB

  1. If you see a porta potty with no line, use it. Even if you don’t need to.
  2. If you have to ask yourself, Does this driver see me? The answer is no.
  3. If you have to ask yourself, Are these shorts too short? The answer is yes.
  4. 1 glazed doughnut = 2 miles
  5. You rarely regret the runs you d0; you almost always regret the runs you skip.
  6. Not everyone who looks fast really is, and not everyone who looks really slow is.
  7. Nobody has ever watched Chariots of Fire from beginning to end. Not even the people who made it.
  8. You can never have too many safety pins on your gym bag.
  9. Running any given route in the rain makes you feel 50 percent more hard-core than covering the same route on a sunny day.
  10. If you care even a little about being called a jogger versus a runner, you’re a runner.

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PASS GAS, NOT JUDGEMENT!

Runner’s ingest a fair amount of healthy foods, which produce gas in the GI tract, where it can not stay forever. Especially when that GI tract is bounced and jostled. Passing gas while running is excusable and inevitable, but…

  • You may not mock another runner for having passed gas, unless he/she has previously mocked you for the same.
  • If a runner has taken pains to mask flatulence, pretend nothing has happened.
  • It’s fun to pretend that the gas you expelled is propelling you forward, like a little booster rocket.

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A PR IS A PR FOREVER, BUT…

You may advertise a personal record (PR) time, or otherwise claim it as your own with no further explanation for two years after setting it. After two years, however, it becomes uncool to tell people, “My marathon PR is 3:12″ without providing a disclaimer – e.g., “My marathon PR is 3:12, but I ran that 63 years ago.”

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EXPAND YOUR SENSE OF FUN

As a runner, your definition of fun – which might have once included water parks, screwball comedies on DVD, and scrapbooking – must be, well, let’s just say broadened and might include:

  • Waking up at 5:30 a.m. to run 10 miles
  • Running in blistering heat
  • Running in the rain
  • Running in 400-meter circles
  • Feeling as if your lungs are about to explode
  • Paying good money for the priviledge of turning your toenails black
  • Any combination of the above

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“LOOKIN’ GOOD!” …AND OTHER RUNNERS’ LIES

Lying is NOT something we normally endorse. But it’s perfectly acceptable to tell a runner that he is looking good at mile 19 of a marathon when, in fact, he looks like an insomniac who’s trying to sneeze, and is confused because someone has switched his running shoes with replicas of concrete. The go-to lie is “Lookin’ good!” Or you could say, “If I weren’t sp awed by the apparent ease with which you’re navigating this course, I might be angry with you for nearly knocking me unconscious with your awesomeness!” The key is to say something. Even a zombie appreciates encouragement.

 Have a good night everyone…be back tomorrow!

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