June 21, 2019

Fresh Pineapple Margaritas

Happy 1st day of summer!!! This probably comes as no surprise, but HELLO! A margarita recipe. I just can’t help myself. But not just any margarita.  A fresh pineapple margarita! Does anything sound more appealing? I don’t know what I like more in this margarita. The bright flavor of the fresh pineapple puree. ...or the yummy cinnamony sugary rim? 

This is easily my favorite cocktail to make at home.  And maybe for the color alone; it is thee most stunning shade of bright yellow! Fresh pineapple and citrus juice are definitely the key players here so make sure you use freshly squeezed lemon, lime and orange juice to make it extra special.

And the cinnamon sugar rim? Game changer, so don’t skip out on it.  But if you MUST be traditional, a salted rim would be phenomenal.

INGREDIENTS (Makes 1 Cocktail):

½ Cup Fresh Pineapple, Chopped
1 Ounce Grand Mariner
2 Ounces Good Tequila, Silver or Gold, based on your preference
½ Ounce Fresh Lime Juice (About 1 Lime)
½ Ounce Fresh Orange Juice (About ½ Orange)
½ Ounce Fresh Lemon Juice (About ½ Lemon)
Cinnamon + Sugar for the Rim, Plus Cherries and Pineapple for Garnish

Whenever I get ready to have happy hour or cocktails at home, I make sure to make it an EXPERIENCE! To me, that means gathering all of my ingredients, pretty glasses, and garnishes - and setting them up into a lovely arrangement. It just makes me happy.  This also inspires me to create something delicious AND beautiful – which is always a must. 

{To begin making the cocktail, put fresh pineapple chunks and the Grand Marnier into a blender.} 

{Pulse the pineapple and orange liqueur until it makes a delicious boozy pineapple puree.}

{Make sure it's perfectly smooth and blended.  Pro Tip: store any leftover pineapple puree in the fridge for a few days and add it to wine or champagne for a wine cooler or Bellini situation! I could drink this concoction with a spoon.}

{Fill a cocktail shaker halfway with ice.}

{Then add in the tequila.}

{Next in goes your FRESH citrus juice.  Orange, lemon and lime, oh my!}

{Finally, add in your pineapple and Grand Marnier puree. Shake it in the shaker for a good minute or so to thoroughly combine and chill everything.}

{In the glass of your choice, rub a lemon slice around the edge.}

{Dip the glass in a mixture of cinnamon and sugar to coat the rim.  I used 3 Tablespoons of sugar and 1 tablespoon of cinnamon.}

{Pour your shaken and chilled cocktail into the cinnamon sugar rimmed glass. Liquid gold! }

{You should have a nice layer of delicious foam at the top from all that shaking and that is the marking of a GOOD cocktail, in my opinion. :)}

{Garnish with a cherry and a few pineapple chunks and ENJOY responsibly.}

I can't think of a better way to kick of the summer season than with this cold, fruity and refreshing drink. This is literally summer in a glass. I'll take 3, please! 

March 28, 2019

Magical Honey Glazed Shrimp

Hello and welcome to thee most magical shrimp recipe in all of the internet lands! I am ready to knock your socks off with flavor! I have made this recipe dozens of times and every single time, my family goes on and on about how GOOD these shrimp are.  Sweet, sticky, tangy. These are everything glazed and amazing that you would want shrimp to be.  I have had these with rice and a veggie for a well rounded weeknight meal, on top of a salad which took it to the NEXT LEVEL. And I have also had these alone as a snack to munch on with a glass of wine.  If you buy shrimp as often as we do, you will want to have this in your recipe arsenal to whip out whenever you want to treat your taste buds to something scrumptious. 

Ingredients for 2 Servings:
2 Dozen Large Shrimp, (de-veined, tail on or off}
2 Tablespoons Dijon Mustard
1 Teaspoon Lemon Pepper Seasoning
1 Teaspoon Granulated Garlic
1 Teaspoon Granulated Onion
1/2 Teaspoon Cayenne Pepper
1/2 Teaspoon Ground Thyme
1/2 Teaspoon Paprika 
4 Tablespoons Butter 
4 Tablespoons Honey 
1 Tablespoon Fresh Squeezed Lemon Juice (or juice of half a lemon)

{As with all of my recipes, you should always have your ingredients on hand and laid out  so that you are ready to start cooking!} 

{In a large bowl add your shrimp.  Make sure they are clean and patted dry.  Add in the Dijon mustard and mix well, coating the shrimp completely.}

{Next sprinkle on the seasonings: lemon pepper, granulated garlic, granulated onion, cayenne pepper, ground thyme and paprika.}

{Mix well to coat the shrimp.}

{Over medium heat, in a hot non-stick skillet, add your butter.  Let it melt and brown for about 2 minutes. The butter will start to smell nutty, which is what you want but be very careful not to let it brown for too long, butter can burn very quickly!}

{After about 2 minutes of the butter browning, add the honey to the pan and stir. You have to move very quickly, this will burn easily, so keep stirring while you add the honey.}

{Next, add the coated and seasoned shrimp to the honey butter mixture.}

{Let the shrimp sear for about 2 minutes per side. The honey butter glaze will bubble and coat the shrimp as they cook. YUM!!}

{Be sure to coat each and every shrimp in the magical honey glaze! Careful not to overcook the shrimp though, this will only take a couple of minutes! Right before taking the shrimp out of the pan, squeeze half of a lemon on top of the shrimp. It's the perfect finishing touch.}

These are sweet and tangy with a kick - so flavorful and satisfying. Honey + Brown Butter is the perfect combination to make them sticky and crave-worthy. You may want to double this recipe - they will disappear the minute you put them out for serving. :) 

xoxo, thanks for reading! 

February 13, 2019

Healthy and Hearty Vegetable Soup with Kale

I would like to introduce you to the most surprisingly simple soup that will be your go-to when you want a warm and comforting bowl of healthy goodness.  I have made this soup more time than I can count and each and every time it gets better.  This is the soup I whip up when I need to get back on track with eating right. Sort of like my "reset" soup.  It's packed with veggies and the seasonings are simple but significant. I always have these items on hand at home so preparing it is a breeze; which is key for me when I want to make my old faithful recipes.

Kale is one of those magical ingredients that add texture and flavor to salads and soups.  I love that it brings a heartiness to the soup and retains its texture even after reheating and enjoying the soup until it's gone. And believe me you are gonna want to slurp every drop. My sister makes it regularly as well and have always mentioned how this soup just gets better every single time she eats it!

I've eaten it for lunch with a salad or sandwich and for dinner with grilled cheese. I've even eaten it as a snack when I just need something to hold me over until the next meal instead of grabbing chips!Another benefit, besides the comfort of knowing that you are getting in your veggies, is how it does wonders for your digestive system.  Let's just say this soup will keep things moving. :)

It comes together in about an hour, so if you have the ingredients on hand - get a big pot going and prepare to be satisfied!

As you can see, I cannot say enough about this wonderful soup! Let's get to the recipe:


2 Tablespoons Avocado Oil {or olive oil}
2 Medium Sized Celery Stalks, chopped
2 Medium Carrots, chopped
3 Cloves Garlic
2 Tablespoons Tomato Paste
3 Cans Broth of your choice {I used chicken} + 1 can water
1 Cup Crushed Tomatoes
1 Tablespoon Salt {more or less to taste}
1 Tablespoon Black Pepper {or less to taste, I like it peppery with a kick}
1 Tablespoon Granulated Garlic
1 Tablespoon Onion Powder
1 Teaspoon Lawry's Seasoned Salt
1 Teaspoon Crushed Red Pepper Flakes
1 Tablespoon Italian Seasoning
2 Tablespoons Balsamic Vinegar
2 Cups Brussels Sprouts, chopped
4 Cups Kale

{Start by washing and chopping your veggies.  You can honestly use any combination of vegetables you want - as long as you start with the holy soup trinity of celery, carrots and onion.}

{In a large Dutch oven {heavy pot with a lid} add in your oil and begin to sauté the celery, carrots and onion over medium heat. Sprinkle lightly with salt and pepper.  For me, it is important to season in layers.  This is how you maximize flavor!}

{After a few minutes, add in your minced garlic.  Sauté until just beginning to brown.}

{Next add in the tomato paste.  Mix well to coat the veggie mixture.}

{Pour in the three cups of broth and one can of water.}

{Mix well to combine and let it come up to a small simmer.}

{Next, add in your crushed tomatoes.  I love the richness that this will bring to the soup!}

{Sprinkle in your seasoning and stir.  Taste and taste again, adjust the seasonings accordingly!}

{Add in the balsamic vinegar.  I can't tell you exactly what this adds to the dish, but it gives such a unique flavor!}

{Next in goes the chopped brussels sprouts.  I have also added cabbage here in place of brussels to switch things up and it was delicious!  Broccoli would also work, or green beans.  Any veggie would, really.}

{Lastly add in the kale and mix well to combine. It will start to wilt and soften as the soup cooks.}

{Reduce the heat and let simmer for an hour or so.  The soup will thicken and get rich as it simmers. SO flavorful and delicious!}

{Serve with crackers, if you wish.  Or with a grilled cheese sandwich.}

Or simply enjoy it as is, it's like a healthy hug in a bowl. :)

xoxo, thanks for reading!