7 Ways to Celebrate Valentines Day When You’re Single & Red Velvet Cupcakes

11 Feb

Valentines Day is approaching super fast. I’m sure the ones who are lucky in love are trying to figure out what to get each other and are planning the perfect date…. But, what if your not lucky in love and looking at Valentines Day as a sad reminder that you are “Single” party of 1? I’m going to give you seven ways to celebrate and enjoy Valentines day and make it one to remember!

  1. Self- care day: All Day, make it all about you. Even if you have to go to work that day. Dress up, wear that outfit and shoes you’ve been holding onto for that one special event that you don’t even have in your planner yet. Treat your-self to goodies all workday: Starbucks or McDonald’s fries and a coke are some ideas. While you’re at work plan your after work events: Do you want your nails done or maybe a massage? Do it!!! Finally, take your self out to dinner. Yes, everyone will be out and all coupled up and that can sometimes be depressing but, don’t even think about that. Every thought you create on your Valentines Day should be only amazing thoughts about you!! What makes you great? Say it and claim it!!! Are you awesome at baking, do you have great style? Think that! How awesome are you at accomplishing your life goals? Are you crushin’ it? That’s the bomb!!! You should be totally pumped about that! So just make this “ME” Day. Because it’s all about you!!!
  2. Send physical Valentine’s Day cards to everyone that you love (not romantically): Send to your mom, dad, sister, brother, grandparents and/or BFF’s. That’s right, go to the store and buy several Valentines Cards picking each one out especially for that loved one. Then sign the card, address the envelope and stick a real stamp on it and put it in the mail! How classic is getting a hand written letter or card in the mail? How special is the person on the receiving end going to feel? Very. Which in turn will make you feel special too. Send some love in the mail. Boom!
  3. Spend some time with an elderly loved one for Valentines Day: Create a memory with them or listen intently while they share their’s.  That’s really something special.
  4. Create a Valentines Day wish list with your Girls over cocktails or mocktails: So, make your significant other wish list; I’ll start: Intelligent, attractive, motivated, christian and God-fearing, employed or self-employed (making money) and, able to hold a great conversation. That’s just for starters….
  5. Take yourself on that dream date you’ve always wanted to go on: Is it to a fancy restaurant or going to listen to live music in an intimate setting or, is it a trip to the museum you’ve never been to and the little 24 hour coney island/breakfast spot in the college district? Do it girl!! What’s stopping you? Go. Something serendipitous might just happen.
  6. Make a romantic dinner at home: Just for YOU! Make your favorite whatever!!  Get your ingredients from the store and turn on that iPad and stream your best-loved tv  show or movie. Light some candles, pour some wine and enjoy YOU! Celebrate you. Oh! Don’t forget dessert! Try the recipe below for Easy and Delicious Red Velvet Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Icing
  7. Shoot your shot (Take a chance): If he’s single, why not? But, be cool. Just let him know you think he’s pretty dope and you want to wish him a Happy Valentines Day.

 

Easy and Delicious Red Velvet Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Icing

Ingredients for cupcakes

1 package boxed German Chocolate cake mix with pudding

1 cup sour cream

½ cup water

¼ cup vegetable or corn oil

2 tablespoons or 1 bottle (1 ounce) red food coloring

3 large eggs

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Directions

Pre heat oven to 350°. Place 18-21 cupcake or muffin liners in the muffin pans.  In a large bowl mix together the eggs, oil and, water with a heavy wire whisk or electric mixer. Next add in the cake mix, sour cream, vanilla extract and, red food coloring stir together with wire whisk until combined or on low for 30-60 seconds if using mixer (batter may have a few small lumps).

Using a portion scoop and rubber spatula fill each muffin cup with cake batter. You should end up with 18-21 cupcakes. Bake the cupcakes in the oven for 15-18 minutes. The  cupcakes are ready when the tops spring right back when lightly touched on top. Do not over bake.

When the cupcakes are done, remove from oven and cool in the pans for 15 minutes. Remove the cupcakes from the pans and let cool completely; about 1 hour.  In the mean time make the icing.


Ingredients for icing

½ cup or 1 stick salted butter at room temperature

1 package (8 ounces) cream cheese at room temperature

1 pound box confectioners sugar

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

½ teaspoon salt

Directions

In a medium to large bowl blend together the softened butter and cream cheese. Add in half the confectioners sugar and mix on the lowest speed so the sugar won’t splatter everywhere. Next, pour in the remaining powdered sugar and the vanilla extract and mix again on the lowest speed till all sugar is incorporated. Add in salt and stir the mixer on the highest speed for 1 minute to make light and fluffy.

***Feel free to add in some food coloring if desired change the color of your icing for a little flare.***


Happy Valentines Day no matter how you decide to spend it. I hope you get some ideas from this post and try out these yummy cupcakes! Send me a picture in the comments if you do. And, let me know how you did spend Valentines.

If you like this post and/or others, please share with your friends and family. Let me know in the comments if you have questions on any of the recipes or other posts on mouthfuloffood.com.

Thank you so much for reading, liking and sharing,

Kim Cherie

Follow me on FB, Instagram, and Twitter @ mouthfuloffood

Here’s some pictures of the cupcakes being made…..

This recipe whips up in like 5 minutes!

Put the eggs, oil and, water together in a large bowl.

Scramble together lightly.

Add in the cake mix, sour cream, food coloring and vanilla extract.

Stir again until all ingredients are incorporated.

I picked up these silver liners from a cake and candy supply store. And, you can get a portion scoop from your restaurant supply store.

Bake the cupcakes 15-18 minutes. Using a portion scoop makes your baked goods come out the same size.

They should look just like this when done.  Can’t wait to bite into one!!

Now lets make the icing!

In a medium to large bowl mix together the cream cheese and butter.

Mix in the confectioners sugar and vanilla extract.

Stir in salt last. (I need something to cut the sweetness a little)

And, if you want separate a little icing in a small bowl with a drop of food coloring to change the color.

Decorate your Valentine Red Velvet Cupcakes however you desire and ENJOY!!

Bye!

Dear Momma,

3 Feb

Hey everyone,

It’s the beginning of February, it’s the weekend and, it’s also my momma’s birthday today!!! If you are reading this please help me celebrate her. She is nothing less than amazing, beautiful, cool, dope, empathetic, friendly, generous, hopeful, inspirational, joyful, kind, loved and lovable, motivated, notable, outgoing, passionate, quiet, respected and respectful, soft-spoken, talented, uniting, vocal, worthy, x (meaning christian), yearning and, zealous. My mom is all of that and then some!

Let me tell you a little bit about her…..She is the oldest out of 6 kids. The guard and protector of each one who came after her and the two who made it possible for her to be on earth in the first place. Yes, she is a super hero. She is our family’s event planner, organizer and boss……

Side note: Mom is not a big fan of photo ops so, I had to dig hard for the ones we have of her here today.

A few of my mom’s favorite things are: unique jewelry, old school music, the TV show Bonanza, knitting one of a kind hats, scarves and, gloves, reading recipes, cooking and baking, Tom Selleck (her most favorite actor), good barbecue and, home decor inside and out.

Where would I be if it weren’t for my mother? That question I have heard from others and said to myself more than once. Where would I be without her examples? I don’t want to know.  Grateful, is what I am for everything my momma is and, all she has yet to become.

Dear Momma,

Today I want to profess what an incredible woman you are. There are so many things that I admire about you. You are totally devoted to your mother and our entire family.

The desire you have to make your neighborhood and this community a better place is more than noteworthy. Throughout my life you have displayed courage, character, dignity, tenacity, and wisdom. From a classroom to a boardroom, you have never stopped educating yourself. That is a true life lesson. Your visions and ideas for a better tomorrow are now my visions and ideas for the same. I have witnessed you being an agent of change, board member, a chairwoman, a project manager and a program founder all because you wanted everyone to have a great community to work and live in.

Your schedule is always full with meetings and events but, you always make time for your family.  Thank you for caring for us the way you do. Thank you for providing infinite examples on how to keep going no matter what. Thank you for showing me how to be a mother. Thank you for being the calm in my storms. Thank you for being my critic and my supporter, my friend and, my momma.

Thank you for being everything that is you!

I wish you the happiest of all birthdays,

Love,

Kim Cherie

Image

Confirmed. The Best Banana Bread EVER!

28 Jan

That’s right. I have confirmed this at least 6 times. This recipe for Banana Bread is the best. This is not my own recipe; just one I have tried in search of a really good one. And, I found it with this one. The best quick breads and muffins have to be fresh, moist and flavorful.

Before I found this recipe, the one I liked best was at the bakery (King Arthur’s Pasties, here in Flint, Michigan) I worked at almost 20 years ago. After I moved on from there I would still special order a large loaf of Banana Bread without nuts, just for me. (I don’t like nuts by the way; unless, it’s peanuts covered in M & M’s or a Snickers…… I’m just sayin’)….. Ok, back to the subject of Banana Bread:  I really like it. I like it right out of the oven with a pat of butter smeared and melted all over the slice. And, I also like it when I pack it for lunch within a zip lock baggie and give it time to re-create some extra moisture. Not like a hot and sweaty slice of bread but, like a room temperature marination period. IT’S THEE BEST!….. And, don’t knock it till you try it. Again, I’m just sayin’.

So this is another recipe that is super easy. The only thing that you would have to be concerned with here is letting your bananas really ripen or finding some really already ripe ones. FYI, in case you ever need ripe banana’s in a hurry. Go to your neighborhood discount grocery (ex: Sav-a-lot, Aldi); they almost always have ripe, ripe bananas that are ready to be turned into banana bread or banana pudding. And, you can get them for almost nothing. Pick bananas that have brown spots and stems. Those will give the sweetest banana flavor.

Slice 3 to 4 medium to large bananas in a large bowl prior to mashing.

Banana Breads and other quick breads make really good thank you gifts. So, bake some of this good stuff up and send me a note on what you think. Then, put this recipe in your recipe box or binder and save for the next time you need to say “Thanks!”   This is the perfect way to extend your thank you into action with a token of appreciation.

Purchase these disposable bakers online from King Arthur Flour Company or Sur la Table.

You can bake this bread in 2 (8×4 inch) or 1 (9×5 inch) loaf pans. Also, as a option you can bake mini loaves in disposable oven safe loaf bakers. I purchased the ones shown above online from Sur la Table.

All the players are here: butter, sugar, eggs, buttermilk, vanilla, bananas, flour, baking soda and salt.Mash the bananas with a potato masher or electric mixer prior to mixing the other ingredients.

Place the butter and sugar in a large bowl.

Blend the butter and sugar together with an electric mixer.

Add in the eggs and vanilla extract.

Mix in the vanilla and eggs until the yolks disappear.

Add in the buttermilk and mashed bananas.Blend until evenly combined.

Lastly, add in the flour, soda and salt.Stir in the flour just until it disappears.Scrape down the sides of the bowl and fold in nuts if using.

Evenly divide the batter among the pans.Bake in the small baker at 35-40 minutes.

Bake the 8 or 9 inch loaves 1 hour to 1 hour 15 minutes.Serve warm with butter or cool to room temperature and save for later.

 

The Best Banana Bread

*adapted from Gold Medal All Purpose Flour*

Ingredients:

1¼ cups sugar

½ cup butter (1 stick) softened

2 large eggs

1½ cups mashed very ripe bananas (3-4 medium)

½ cup buttermilk

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

2½ cups all purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon salt

1 cup chopped nuts (optional)

Instructions:

Pre-heat oven to 350°.

Spray or grease your metal or glass loaf pans with non- stick spray or shortening. If using disposable bakers skip this part.

With an electric mixer blend together the butter and sugar in a large bowl. Mix in the eggs and vanilla until the yolk of the egg disappears. Add in the bananas and buttermilk, beat with the electric mixer until combined. Stir in the flour, baking soda and salt just until the flour disappears. Scrape down the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula and fold in nuts in using.

Evenly distribute the batter into the pan or pans.

Bake 8 inch loaves 1 hour,

Bake 9 inch loaves 1 hour 15 minutes,

Bake small bakers 40 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

Immediately run a butter knife around the perimeter of the metal or glass pans. Cool the loaves in metal or glass containers 10 minutes.  Loosen sides of the loaves from pans, remove from pans to cooling rack or place on a platter and serve warm with butter.

Don’t try to resist, answer the calling of The Best Banana Bread. You’ll thank me after.

Let me know what you think in the comments, or on social: Facebook, Twitter and Instagram @ mouthfuloffood

Hit me with your questions too! I’ve got answers for cooking, baking, being a mom and life. I’ll be sure to get right back!

Have a great week!

Kim Cherie

12 Books for 2018

21 Jan

This year I have curated a list of books to get me through 2018. I have compiled this list mostly from my obnoxiously long Wish List on Amazon. I promise I add something to my wish list at least once a week. It is comprised of cookbooks, novels, self help manuals, spiritual readers and, some non book items that I have a desirable interest in.

I decided on creating this list after I had been asked more than once how many books am I going to try to read this year. I did not have a definite answer because I had never thought about completing a certain number of books in year. I had no reason to. I read all the time, picking books that interest me when learned of through author interviews, book review or, word of mouth. I have noticed several book reading challenges posted on social media suggesting to read up to 52 book this year…. Well, maybe one year I will read 52 books in a year but, not this year. On that, I am certain. This year I have committed to 12 books. Out of this list not one is a cookbook. I have excluded them from this list because I actually browse a few cookbooks a week from the collection acquired between my mother and I.

And, for the record I have already knocked out books 1 & 2 for 2018 which I will list and share why I enjoyed them. Books 3-12 will be read in no certain order.

Here we go!

1. The Perfect Find by Tia Williams: Jenna Jones is 40 year old female who is finding her way back after a break up and loss of her career. She meets Eric a hot young thang at a party one night and they totally connect. They find out they actually work together at her new job. They both try very hard to remain professional and resist each other while working very closely together on assignments but, the temptation is so heavy. There is also the drama at work: her boss is his mother (she can’t find out that anything ever happened), she’s also Jenna’s nemesis. Jenna’s ex-fiancé is possibly trying to win her back and more. Jenna and Eric, you will enjoy them both. (Book 1 done)

2. Year of YES by Shonda Rhimes: Who would’ve thought the Queen of Thursday nights would actually be an introvert whose desire was to alway be behind the camera and out of sight all together? I wouldn’t have guessed it. Who would’ve thought she would reject almost all invitations from glamorous people to elegant events? That was Shonda Rhimes before her Year of YES. Challenged by her oldest sister’s gripe that Shonda never says yes; she takes a journey out of her former self, into self love and discovery, found real happiness, blessings and her new true self. (Book 2 done)

3. You are a Badass – How to Stop Doubting Your Greatness and Start Living an Awesome Life by Jan Sincero: The description says “A self-help book for people who desperately want to improve their lives but don’t want to get busted doing it”. I have seen this book on the books shelves of every store that sells books over the last year. Which says to me this must be a good book. I love good books on self-improvement. I’m excited to dig in. Who wouldn’t want to read a book telling you how awesome you already are?

4. The Last Lecture by Randy Pauch: So, this book has been on my Mental Book List for so many years. Probably before I could create a list on Amazon which is how this one slipped by. I’m pretty sure it was mentioned in Shonda Rhimes book which jogged my memory. 2018 is this books year for my personal story hour. I remember that this book was getting a lot of press years ago. I remember them saying that Professors normally give or are asked to give a “last lecture” on their mortality and consider what matters most to them. In this case, this professor; Randy Pauch was really facing his own mortality and giving his “last lecture” being terminally ill from cancer sharing what he thought was the most important things in life…..What would you say if you only had a little time to say it? What would you share with those who are listening about getting the best from life?

5. I almost forgot about you by Terry McMillan: Another read that got lost in my mental library. Essence magazine shared an excerpt when this book was being released and I totally wanted to know more about the main character Dr. Georgia Young. I just remember her thinking about her life and what has become of it. She seemed lonely and unhappy which is always a good premise to an amazing love and empowerment story. With Terry McMillan you can always count on a page turner.

6. Power of Broke by Daymond John: The creator of international FUBU brand the title speaks for itself. It speaks to me. Being broke can spark motivation & innovation. I hope reading this book will give me both.

7. Girl Boss by Sophia Amoruso: I tried to read this book summer 2017. I didn’t finish. I’m putting it on my list because I want to know her story. Starting her Nasty Gal business when she was almost broke by purchasing classic, retro clothing and accessories from resale shops and selling them on eBay for profit. And, away she went! Now she is a millionaire probably several times over. This is probably actually going to be #BOOK 3 2018

8. Don’t Settle for Safe by Sarah Jakes Roberts: I need this book RIGHT NOW! Don’t settle for safe. My life right now. Talk to me Sarah!

9. Meternity by Meghann Foye: This is not a typo.. The main character Liz is taking time off from work when it is presumed she is pregnant because she is experiencing nausea at work due to her overwhelming workload. Going all the way with this rouse it will be exciting to find out if she gets away with it in the end.

10. The Butler Speaks – A Return to Proper Etiquette, Stylish Entertaining & The Art of Good Housekeeping by Charles MacPherson: Confession: I love etiquette books. Of the 3 – 4 large impressive lifestyle manuals I have read; each one teaches on how to be in social situations, how to prepare, and how to be gracious. Things that are not always taught anymore. Things that should be taught forever-more. I look forward to reading what the butler has to say. I’m already giving this a permanent space on the book shelf.

11. After the Dance- My Life with Marvin Gaye by Jan Gaye: I remember when Marvin Gaye died. I didn’t know who Marvin Gaye was but, I remember him dying. I was in the car with my mother going to Detroit and the Radio DJ was talking about the death of Marvin Gaye…Its funny what stays with you from when you are a kid. From then on I knew Marvin Gaye. Which is why I want to read this tell all from his wife Janis.

12: How Strong Women Pray by Bonnie St. John: What more is there to say? One of my desires is to learn to pray better and more often. I want prayer to become natural and habitual for me. I desire a constant connection with God on both the good and bad days. I want to be a prayer warrior!

Well, there it is….my reading to do list 2018. I’m sure that there will be several books released this year that will try to capture my attention and squeeze their way onto my 2018 list; and some of them succeed. But, for now this is it and I’m so excited to dive into books 3-12.

What books are on your list this year? This month?

What books do you recommend for my future lists?

Let me know! Leave a comment on the blog or on FB, IG and Twitter @ mouthfuloffood

See you next time!

Kim Cherie

******PHOTOS #2-12 SHARED ON THIS POST ARE VIA AMAZON.COM******

Image

Oh So Easy Buffalo Chicken Dip with Warm Pita Wedges

14 Jan

 Buffalo Chicken Dip. Quick and easy to make on short notice.

I fell in love with Buffalo Wings almost 25 years ago. I can’t remember where I had them first T.G.I. Friday’s or Applebees?? But, I knew I was in love with the hot sauce soaked chicken wings dunked in ranch dressing….OOOOOOHHHHH! Just the thought of the of the fresh hot wings served with ranch dressing, celery sticks and fries. I think me and one of my friends would go out for wings once or twice a week after we got off work. Prior to that I had never had or even heard of Buffalo Wings. It was probably my favorite menu item for the next 2 years. Week in- week out. I even learned to make them at home. I baked my wings in the oven and made the sauce mixture on the stove top. Dipping the wings in the sauce and then baking for a few minutes more to create hot sauce cured chicken wings. Soon after, I became a mother and my craving for hot sauce decreased. It was still liked but, not loved so much.

  Wings photo courtesy of istockphoto.com

Anywho, every now & then I may still order hot wings hoping to grab a taste of what use to be. Hanging out late nights at the Applebee or the TGIF… those were my favorite things. And, when I am just having a down right craving but do not desire the messiness of hot sauce hands I make this super easy, super quick Buffalo Chicken Dip. Seriously, it couldn’t even be any easier. Every ingredient is in a package you empty the packages into the bowl and measure out a couple of sauces and bake. I cant express how easy this is to make. This dish is especially for the one who does not like to cook and the one who can not cook but wants to make a good impression as a guest to a girls night or game day party. You can serve this dip with chips, veggies, in a bread bowl or, with pita wedges as I do here today.

 Pita Bread tastes so good when it is warm and soft.

I first had this dip when my mom ordered it from a caterer for a party we were having. Instantly, it was another favorite. I think it was the combo of the warm spicy ranch laced chicken being hugged by warm pita wedges. What else could I do but fall in love?

Soon after I was in search of recipe. The online recipe reflected that making this number would be effortless but, worthy of a slot in my recipe box.

Try it out for your next get together or even better Super Bowl LLII – Sunday, February 4, 2018

So simple ingredients. Just go to the store and grab em’; stir and bake!

Recipe Adapted from Franksredhot.com

BUFFALO CHICKEN DIP

Ingredients

2-3 cups shredded cooked chicken

1 8oz package of cream cheese

1/2 cup hot sauce

1/2 cup prepared ranch dressing

1/2 blue cheese crumbles

1/4-1/2 cup finely chopped green onions

warm pita wedges

Sliced celery sticks

 I have to say it doesn’t look so pleasant in this state, but just wait for the finished product.

Instruction

Combine all ingredients (**except** pita wedges and thinly sliced green onions) in a medium or large bowl. Stir it all together until evenly combined. Transfer to a 1 quart baking dish.

Bake for 20-30 minutes at 350 degrees until warmed through.

Stir in the green onion.

Place pita wedges in another baking dish and cover with foil. Bake the wedges 10-20 minutes until warmed through.

Transfer the dip to a serving bowl and and the pita bread to a complementing platter.

Garnish with sliced celery sticks.

Serve dip and pita warm.

Now we have some pimento cheese looking concoction but I promise it is not.

Bake in the oven and stir in the green onions last. I was using them as a garnish but, it tasted so good I mixed them right in.

 Transfer to a serving bowl and plate or platter, garnish with the celery sticks and serve warm.

Thank you for stopping by. Until next time,

Kim Cherie

Hey you! Shoot me a comment and tell me what your favorite party dip is?

Connect with me on Facebook, Instagram and, Twitter @mouthfuloffood

 

A Recipe for Goal Getting….

7 Jan

Happy January 2018!

Here we are 7 days into year 2018…..How excited are you excited for the next 12 months? Do you have BIG PLANS, GOALS, WISHES AND, TO DO LISTS?…..I do!…. I always do. I have ideas, lists, plans, goals and a never-ending to-do lists. And, I don’t just have them for the new year, its an ongoing theme and thing with me. Seriously, just ask my sister. She is my immediate go to when the ideas and plans start running through my brain simultaneously. It’s quite frequent when I call or text her my next “Great Idea” and, she kindly always listens and responds with her support (I love my sister). We are Best Friends Forever.

The problem is, I rarely come through with the follow through. My “Great Idea” may become what I would say is “difficult” for me or “takes too much time”, “gets expensive” or worse, I become fearful, get discouraged and give up altogether. This happens ALL THE TIME. When this does happen, I am filled with personal disappointment and shame for not getting IT done. Giving up has somehow become my life story. But this I declare, is not how I want my story to read.

Over the last few months and a little bit possibly longer, I have been thinking heavily on how to push past my fears, failures and the oncoming obstacles? I’ve asked myself, “how do I focus on me, committ to myself and gain momentum to successful goal getting for 2018 and beyond?” “How do I get back up again after I fall? How do I keep going and create my best life?” These were my real life questions to which I am fixated on getting the answers to.

Now, I hope that my words here don’t come across as a pity party or sob story that I see myself as a failure all around. No, it’s not like that. It is far, far from that. Yes, I do get down on myself. But, I don’t stay there. I have recognized my shortcomings and now finding ways to overcome them. The above statements are the results of a self-audit, a up close and personal self check. A life review. What I did, what I didn’t, what happened and, what I’m going to do now to succeed at my goals. My history of having these great ideas, making plans and not following through stops here!

Why here? Why now? Because, I’m so tired of sitting on the side lines of life and watching my counterparts live out loud. Because I have seen how God gives me concepts to bring to life and when I don’t use what he has given me; he passes it on to another. I’ve witnessed these things more than once or twice and again I am disappointed with myself. Saying that could’ve been me doing this or being that… or saying “That was my idea”… “(That I did nothing with).”

Well, pretty much I am done giving away my gifts from God. And, as I say this I know that I have got to be purposely intentional with everyday of my life and, be mindful of what did or did not work in the past…… But, why didn’t my visions, goals and life blueprints come to fruition? I wrote them all down and put them in my planner time after time. I should’ve been knocking it out the park. Why wasn’t I successful at goal getting? I did not know.

Until now?… I have always had the main idea of goal setting but, I did not have the process down of “GOAL GETTING!” Goal Getter, YES! Get to the the finish line and grab that goal by the horns. And, it is as simple as writing a recipe; for SUCCESS. What do I mean by write a recipe for your goals? Just that. When you read a recipe you basically have 2 parts: the ingredient list and the instructions to have a great outcome for your dish. For successful goal getting we are going to use the same formula.


Example Goal: Drink 8 glasses of water per day

Ingredients/Needs: Water, Glass or water bottle

Instructions/Process: Set evenly a spaced interval timer on your watch or smart phone for intake reminders


At this point in the goal setting and getting we are on task. We have our plan and we have what we need. All that’s left is to just do it.

Bottom Line: Know your destination and have good directions on how to get there.

2018 I’m doing things differently! Won’t you join me?! …..Become a GOAL SETTER AND A GOAL GETTER. We will be challenged, we will be discouraged, we will be all kinds of fearful. But, we must PERSIST. We must not give up. And, if by chance we do give up, just pick up where we left off and KEEP GOING.

What recipe for goal getting will you write for January? For 2018?

How will you persist?

Talk to me, let me know here on @ mouthfuloffood.com or on Social: Facebook and Instagram @mouthfuloffood

Filed under: Things that matter

Until next time,

Kim Cherie, Goal Getter

Image

Favorite Cookbook Friday #10 & No-Roll Sugar Cookies

18 Aug

 

What do I think of when I think of Sugar Cookies? Christmas! Now I know we have approximately 4 months till Christmas but, for me sugar cookies with sprinkles and/or icing makes me desire snow and Christmas trees…. I know, I know don’t say the “S” word.

 

Anyway, during the holidays Sugar is my favorite flavor cookie. It’s probably my daughter’s favorite anytime, which is probably how I came across this recipe. I don’t always have time to chill and roll out sugar cookie dough. So, I looked for a no-roll sugar cookie in one of my many cookbooks and found this one. When I first found this recipe many years ago I had to read it several times because I didn’t see eggs included in the recipe. That really had me confused. I thought, is this an error? No eggs? This can’t be right?…. Right?……Wrong. After testing the recipe I saw that it was not a mistake. That means this is good news for all cookie dough lovers. This cookie dough is safe to eat uncooked! YAY!!! BRAVO!! BRAVO!! ALL HAIL EGGLESS COOKIE DOUGH!!!

I like this cookie because it’s easy to make and no rolling it out. The recipe instructs you to chill the dough. I haven’t tried it with out the chilling but, you do have to bring it almost a back to room temperature to easily scoop the dough with a portion scoop. I would recommend trying a 1/2 dozen without the chilling and see how they turn out. Otherwise, follow the recipe as is. This sugar cookie is tasty, whether baked until just done or baked a little longer for a crispier bite. I prefer this cookie on the crispy side as opposed to my other cookie favorites. Roll the cookies in white, colored sugars or other sprinkles. Press the dough out with the bottom of a glass greased with shortening and bake at 375 degrees.

IMG_0216

 

No-Roll Sugar Cookies

Ingredients:

1 cup granulated sugar

1 cup powdered sugar

1 cup butter softened

1 cup vegetable oil

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

3 1/2 cups all purpose flour

3/4 cup cornstarch

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon cream of tartar

1/2 salt

granulated sugar, colored sugars and sprinkles

 

Directions:

In a medium bowl combine the sugars. In a second medium bowl combine the flour, cornstarch, salt, baking soda and, cream of tartar. Lightly mix the flour mixture with a fork and set aside. 

Beat sugars, butter, oil and vanilla in a large bowl with an electric mixer on low to medium speed. Stir in remaining ingredients except the granulated and other sugars for rolling. Transfer the cookie dough to a medium bowl and cover and chill until firm or about 2 hours.

Pre-heat the oven to 375 degrees. Shape the dough into 1-inch balls using 2 spoons or a portion scoop. Roll the dough into the sugars or sprinkles and place on a parchment lined cookie sheet. Press the cookie dough down with a greased bottomed glass. Bake in the heated oven 6-8 minutes until set but not brown. Immediately remove from cookie sheet to wire rack to cool (if you can wait that long).

 

 

IMG_0234

Questions and comments welcomed! Give me a shout when you try this or any other recipe on mouthfuloffood.com

Thank you for stopping by!

Kim

 

Image

Creamy Coleslaw with a Few Special Guests

30 Jun


Just in time for Fourth of July fun, family and food, I wanted to share this coleslaw recipe with you. Coleslaw is one of my favorite cold salads. My favorite times to have it is when I can eat it with either with a barbecue dinner or a fish fry with spaghetti and hushpuppies. Either way I’m happy. This recipe today was shared with me from my friend Latina. I met her at church and we bowled together on the same league for a couple of years. Latina gave me a sample of her coleslaw years ago when she came to pick up a cake I had baked for her. I think it was a carrot cake with cream cheese icing I made for her that year. Well, I was immediately delighted when I tasted it. It was creamy, sweet with raisins and apples. I love apples too! So, I was sold…..


It wasn’t until years later probably just 2 years ago when I finally texted Latina and asked her for the recipe. She replied back and happily texted back with the recipe.  I make coleslaw all the time now for dinner with pulled pork sandwiches, and family functions, and everyone loves it. I mean they really love it.  I made it last year for our annual family event last year I ended up giving the recipe out at least 3 times from that event.

Before Latina shared her recipe with me I really didn’t want to make coleslaw, even though I like it a whole lot. I didn’t want cut up a lot of cabbage. Well, now that I know that cutting up a some cabbage isn’t hard to do. I could do it anytime. With this recipe that I am sharing with you today you won’t blink an eye because you can buy the packaged coleslaw mix and the prepared coleslaw dressing in the jar right next to it at the grocery store. Viola’, mix in you own special guests, refrigerate, and there you have some delicious coleslaw. Believe me. You won’t be sorry.

Creamy Coleslaw with a Few Special Guests

Ingredients:

1 bag pre-shredded coleslaw mix

1 Red Delicious Apple chopped with skin on

fresh lemon juice from half a lemon

1 cup raisins or Craisins

1/2 cup partially drained crushed pineapple

1 teaspoon poppy seeds

1 cup jarred coleslaw dressing or more to taste

1T sugar (optional)

1 cup walnuts (optional)

Instructions:

Place chopped apple in a medium size bowl in the lemon juice and toss to keep from browning. In a large mixing bowl pour in the coleslaw mix. Add in the raisins, partially drained crushed pineapple, poppy seeds, chopped apple, and walnuts if using. Next pour in 1 cup coleslaw dressing and stir all ingredients together till completely combined. Taste and add sugar if needed. Transfer the coleslaw to a serving bowl, cover, and chill 4-6 hours or overnight and serve.

You  may add in more dressing a little at a time if needed also until desired consistency is achieved. A little goes a long way with this recipe.

**Be aware** The coleslaw will gets creamier as it sits. It may not look creamy enough when first mixed but the mixture will develop as it refrigerates.

 

What cold salads do you like at your summer cookouts? Do you make a winning summer dish? What is it? Let me know in the comments!

Thank you for reading Mouthful of Food!

Happy 4th of July!! See you next time!

Kim

Like me on Facebook @ Mouthful of Food

Follow me on Twitter and Instagram @ Mouthfuloffood

Email me @ Mouthfuloffood@gmail.com

 


 

 

 

My Unexpected Incredible Texas Food Tour: Part II

16 Jun

img_2318Here is the sign welcoming me to my sister’s beautiful house.

 

Seven days is not enough…Taking on two Texas cities calls for at least one week in each city. Nothing in the Houston Area is quick and around the corner from what I can tell. Here are some notes/advisements I thought I could share when planning a big trip:

  1. Do a lot of research on places of interest to you.
  2. Create a daily to-do list and a plan of attack.
  3. Map out destination locations and plan your tour according to distance and proximity. (If  there are events, places, and restaurants of interest in the same or close area plan to see those on the day, permitting there is no conflict with dress code or other requirements.) Doing this will allow you and your companions to cover more ground in less time on your trip.
  4. Start early in the day on your adventure.
  5. Find out in-advance which places are difficult to get into, will most likely will have a wait, and/or requires pre purchasing tickets.
  6. Parking? How much does it cost? Is it close to your event or destination?
  7. Last but not least… If you are planning for public transportation such as Uber or Lyft verify that it these services are available in that area. (Trust me.)

**Following these pre planning steps should insure you and your accompaniment a smooth and successful time on your trip.**

Here I am enjoying the night air at Cowboys and Indians..
Continuing on our tour……..

Have you ever been to Central Market Gourmet Grocery Store?….This lovely place houses everything noteworthy for making your breakfast, lunch, dinner or event the best of the best. I love, love, love grocery stores… Not just any grocery stores though. I love the kind that inspire me to cook great food or try new ingredients because their ingredients look good enough to eat right there in the store. Isn’t that good looking food when you just want to create something delicious on the spot?  From domestic and exotic produce like baby pineapples and kumquats and dragonfruits to cheeses of every flavor and texture, and $17 dollar jams and jellies too. (That is not a typo and I did not buy it. I wanted to though.) The meat department would make you flip it starts from one wall and ends on the other just for the fish and seafood and on the other side is the beef, pork and poultries and its wall to wall too!. Then there is the dried spices and herbs section, it is pretty cool to offer such a broad spectrum of flavors and be able to purchase just what you need. No need to buy a whole jar of anything there if you will never need it again or just want to sample it for your dish. You can just buy what you need. If lived in this area, Central Market Grocery and I would be on a first name basis.

Baby Pineapples and more are available at Central Market. 



Other Amazing things inside Central Market

  • Pre prepared fresh ingredients for soups for quick dinners (packaged and bagged ready for easy pick up)
  • The bakery section has an infinite number of baked goods and fresh breads ready to eat.
  • The Cheese section. That’s all I have to say about that. Cheese is everything.
  • Chef prepared hot foods and cold food selections.
  • Cooking Classes. Yes. Yes. Yes.
  • Healthy Living Department
  • Housewares, Dinnerwares, and Cookwares

I could’ve stayed there for one full day, just creating ideas in my head….One day I will. Next time you’re in Texas look for Central Market. You won’t be sorry.

Central Markets shopping bag gives hints to all the awesomeness inside the store.
On Friday during my Houston/Austin Texas takeover we visited Bourdreaux’s a Cajun restaurant and bar. It was early evening and not very busy in the bar section so we sat there and ordered Frozen Hurricanes. I also ordered a basket of Hushpuppies with jalapeno’s. Hushpuppies are especially delicious when they are hot just out of the fryer…  Bourdreaux’s served the fried cornbreads with butter. That was new for me. I eat butter always on cornbread, but never considered it for my hushpuppies.. I continued to think further on it. Why not honey butter or why not just honey? That would be delicious…. Savory hot fried cornbread rounds with honey or maybe even a good maple syrup?….. Ok, let me calm down…… I will have to try it at home……In the mean time these hushpuppies make the grade.

 Frozen Hurricanes…..

From Boudreaux’s we ventured on to what is know as “The Flat” a Houston area bar/grill music venue. This hidden gem gave me a bohemian vibe just from the lighting and ambiance…  The DJ kept the mood right with music that switched from Hip Hop to R & B without pause keeping us music lovers satisfied. It was still early evening and not a whole lot of patrons, but I appreciated the atmosphere and the beats. The outdoor patio area still had more to offer with the rhythmic sounds playing outside too. The perimeter was enclosed with wooden fencing and lined with planted trees and various greenery. Lighting the early night would be white lined lights. It was beautiful. This place was perfect for a girl like me who appreciates intimate music lounges. No disappointments here. Good music. Good people. Good Vibes.
The Flat offers coffee options too I see!

The patio in the back of  The Flat.
From the flat we Uber’ed to Cowboys and Indians. A Tex- In kitchen. Get it? A Texas, Indian Kitchen A blend of Texas American food with the flavors and spices of India is what the description advises. Cowboys and Indians offers a variety of dishes for meat eaters, vegetarians and vegans too. Offering traditional burgers, fries, and salads and american desserts for the Cowboy appetites and if you desire Indian tastings you would be happy to see Butter Chicken Tikka Masala, Lamb Vindaloo, Beef Coconut Curry and more. Being semi full from the hushpuppies I decided to go with the Beef Samosa’s (flaky  pastries filled with ground beef and onions). I opted out of the offered dipping sauce for traditonal barbeque sauce. Mi hermana (my sister) offered the no meat option of this same dish.  Hers was filled with curried potatoes and peas. She also had the crispy fries.

Cowboys and Indians a Tex-In Kitchen menu

Beef Samosa’s: Tasty!!
We sat outside in the covered patio section, the weather was threatening to rain and the sprinkles were beginining when we arrived but with the patio being covered there were no worries of being saturated by the water. So far I can say that I love the option of being able to dine outside at a lot of eateries. This is one my favorite things in Texas.

 Me again, in the covered patio section of Cowboys and Indians.

Lastly on this weather perfect Friday night we made our final appearances for the evening at The Alley Kat bar. The music was pumping as soon as you hit the door. The source was unknown. People were enjoying the sounds, the drinks and each other.  Out of all the places we checked out tonight, this place had the largest turnout.  The Alley Kat was like a maze to me. There was an upstairs featuring live music, and a separate downstairs section with more music possibly coming from a sound system, and outdoor seating protected from the immediate outside.  The best part of Alley Kat was the female singer. I did not catch her name and I am still disgruntle over it… I just remember her singing like Chrisette Michele covering an India Arie song. She was great. Her performance to me was definitely worth that stop.

On my to do list while in Texas:

  1.  Sprinkles Cupcakes
  2.  In -n-Out Burger
  3. The Breakfast Klub

Confirmation. It was meant to be.

Number one was done. Number 2 was getting checked off on Saturday, and number three I didn’t think was going to happen. Katrina was not interested in going to The Breakfast Klub which is quite a hike from the home base, you’re almost always guaranteed a wait and with limited hours of operation (so we thought) it was looking like a “no go”. I had given up on eating at the Zagat rated restaurant. While walking through the maze of The Alley Kat bar a sign was posted noting The Breakfast Klub is now open from 10pm-3am. YES! YES! YES!.. There’s still a chance!…… The Alley Kat sat right behind The Breakfast Klub.  I was destined to be there after all….It was fate….. Again, so I thought. My belly had been feeling queasy and full since the Hurricanes and I could not even consider just doing just a tasting here; where they were once voted one of the best breakfasts across america. I wanted to have a full scale smorgasbord tasting. The menu boasts of pancakes, wings and waffles, katfish and grits, biscuits and gravy, eggs and more!!!! I am heartbroken. No Breakfast Klub for me. Not tonight. Not this trip….

 Today I am recovered from my Hurricane belly. I miss those wings and waffles I haven’t met yet. I was so close…..Yet, so far.

Making the painful decision to abstain from breakfast for dinner; we decided to head to the homestead and prepare for tomorrow. Austin Texas our weekend adventure!

Texas Foodie Adventure Locations: Part II

Central Market Gourmet Grocery: 3815 Westheimer Rd, Houston, Tx 77027                  Phone: 713.386.1700

Boudreaux’s Cajun Kitchen: 17595 Tomball Pkwy, Houston Tx 77064                                Phone: 713.463.0099

The Flat: 1701 Commonwealth St., Houston, Tx 77006                                                             Phone: 713.360.7228

Cowboys and Indians Tex-In Kitchen: 1901 Taft St., Houston, Tx 77006                            Phone: 713.485.6724

The Alley Kat Bar & Lounge: 3718 Main St., Houston, Tx 77002                                             Phone: 713.874.0722

The Breakfast Klub: 3711 Travis, Houston, Tx 77002                                                               Phone: 713.528.8561

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

My Unexpected Incredible Texas Food Tour: Part I

2 Jun

I’ve just recently returned from my first visit to Texas. I went by airplane to Houston to visit my sister for 1 whole week. This trip included my first plane ride since I was a 14 year old and, prior to that I had only flown once.  I was a complete novice at this whole airport and airplane thing (buying tickets, picking a seat, paying for bags, checking in, printing a boarding pass)…. whew! Can’t someone put me to sleep and wake me when I arrive? No such luck with the help of an anesthesiologist though. I was fortunate enough to have worked over night before the flight. Sleep was in order after all once we reached flying altitude. I slept all but thirty minutes of the flight when the captain announced we were making our decent into Houston. Yes! I did it!  I got on a plane and did not have to be sedated by choke-hold from air marshals due to my heightened anxieties.

This is me waiting to board the plane in Detroit after numerous delays.

 
The plane had a flat tire.

 
I got off the plane so excited… So excited to be on the ground, so excited to see my sister, her 2 dogs, and the city she decided to make her home 10 years ago.  I am so extremely proud of her. She is such a self-starter, so driven, determined, and focused. In this one week she inspired me and motivated me without even trying.

My sister was waiting for me with this wonderful sign when I got off the plane.

 
So, upon my arrival to Houston we immediately wanted food. My sister drove us to Guadalajara Hacienda, a Mexican restaurant. I went there with my mind on one thing. QUESO and CHIPS… welp, mostly queso. I was hoping for a hot and spicy melted cheese bowl and warm chips. I didn’t even get that far. After they seated us in the beautiful outdoor patio section, we were greeted with red salsa, chips, and a white and green cream sauce they called “Creamy Cilantro”.  Let me tell you, I was skeptical and hesitant to try it, but I’m so glad I did.  The dip was served cold, flavored with cilantro and spicy jalapeño with a sour cream and mayonnaise base. This amazing dip closed all my thoughts of Queso cheese for the next few days. I ate all of that dip by myself and then requested more. The server was so generous he brought me enough for 2 days of snacks. Pure delight was my state of mind. It was so yummy? Why have I never had this before? Is this only available in the southern Mexican restaurants? Who know’s, but I have to learn how to make this at home…STAT! My sister and I enjoyed a delicious dinner after the chips and dips. All I have to say is Guadalajara Hacienda, I will be back!

I’m pretty sure I was hypnotized and could not think beyond my taste buds. Therefore, I do not have any optics for Creamy Cilantro…. Stay tuned for pictures of my copy cat version!

 

 

The menu for Ooh La La Dessert Boutique. Several pages of dessert options available.

 

On day 2 in Houston we visited Ooh La La Dessert Boutique. Walking in I was immediately impressed with the ambiance of this place. It was a larger space for a bakery but, not too big. There is enough space for both hungry customers waiting to make a to-go purchase and for customers who want to sit and enjoy their tempting treats in store. The food cases enclosed tall layer cakes, cheesecakes, creme’ brûlées, cookies, and cupcakes of all different flavors. Also on the menu were coffee drinks and lemonade. I decided to order 2 cupcakes, Nilla Nilla (vanilla) and Bunny Boo (carrot). My only disappointment occurred when I ordered my Bunny Boo cupcake. I very clearly asked if there were nuts in the cupcake. The young man said no nuts were in the cake. Turns out there were nuts hiding inside there. The cake was tender, moist and a pinch spicy…… with nuts. I was deceived. Anyhow, I ate around the nuts and then advised the same young man; indeed there were nuts in the cupcake and had I had a food allergy, that could have been very hazardous. I took my other cupcake home for later.

Bunny Boo Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Icing
Tasty carrot cupcake after the first bite.

 
After I had my event with the life threatening carrot cupcake, we drove to another part of town for lunch. Crab cakes for me. Sushi for my sister, Katrina. All I have to say about this stop is she is the winner of picking the right entrée/sushi roll. A vegetable tempura roll with fried asparagus and sweet potato rolled and topped with tempura served with wasabi and ginger. It was tastier than my crab cakes. I wished I ordered it….. Whomp, whomp….. Don’t look back on your past Kim, you’re not going that way.

 

 

On to the next…..cupcakes!

Sprinkles Cupcakes!  Cupcakes, Pupcakes, and Ice Cream too!!!
Sprinkles may I please have four more cupcakes to go! In this box at least…..

 
Our last and final stop of physical face stuffing for the day ended in cupcake heaven. It’s not named that, but that’s what I’ll call it….Yes we hit 2 cupcake bars in one day. So what? Who’s counting the cupcakes anyway? (I think I bought 7 total between the 2 shops. But, that’s between you and me.) Sister had told me about this cupcake shop named Sprinkles that offered delicious cupcakes including a vegan Red Velvet cupcake and a traditional version too. I accepted the challenge. I’ll take the vegan Red Velvet the traditional Red Velvet and raise you 4 more various cupcakes. This Houston location has a small store front with what looks like a very large kitchen in the back. In the display case at Sprinkles you will see cupcakes, pupcakes and, happiness all around. I was totally absorbed in this place with a self titled theme song playing in the background that I did not hear the retail associate talking to me….. I only remember placing my order for our cupcakes and paying for them before I heard the words that have me contemplating my life’s meaning….. “The cupcake ATM is in the back.” Wait. What did she just say? The associate was talking to someone else but the words were meant for me.  She said it again. “It’s open 24-7.”  I wasn’t dreaming. I must see this on demand cupcake deployment machine, NOW!  My sister probably thought I was having a mental breakdown at this point, as I say “Please drive me around to the ATM.”
…..And, there is was: A true story. Cupcake heaven for sure. Magic in a box. A cupcake ATM.

This is not a drill!! A cupcake ATM is a real thing. We are at DEF CON 1. DEF CON 1. Cupcakes prepare to be annihilated……..

 

 

So, you know I had to use it. I did. I didn’t need any more cupcakes to take home with me. I saw a nice lady coming by the ATM and offered to buy her one to see how it worked. She accepted. I ordered the flavor of her choosing by touch screen, paid with a debit card and watched it work. Neatly placed in a brown cardboard box for 1, it came down the ATM and laid flatly on the surface ready to for consumption.

All I want to know is who is the genius behind this awesomeness? Is it possible to get one installed at any address? (Asking for a friend.)

How is this happening?….. Push a button and dessert comes out?…. This is the end of life as we know it, to say the least.

 
After I got home and calmed down from all the excitement, I was able to test my Red Velvets. The traditional cake was yummy moist red cake with light notes of chocolate with cream cheese icing. Again, I was impressed.  Testing the vegan version was the true test though. For months I have been hearing about this vegan alternative and how delicious it is. It was my turn to judge it. With skepticism swirling around my taste buds. I took a bite and thought “this can’t be right”. “Let’s try that again.” The same exact deliciousness I received from the first bite is what I got again. Fresh moist red cake with  hints of cocoa with a vegan cream cheese icing…..You know what? I like it better than the traditional Red Velvet. Who knew?

Vegan Cupcake on the left. Traditional Red Velvet on the right.

 
The first two days of my Texas adventure were already winners. How could it get any better?…. Just wait, because it does.

I’ll tell you more soon!!

Have you ever been on a foodie adventure?

What places are on your foodie adventure checklist?

 

Texas Foodie Adventure Locations:

Guadalajara HaciendaMexican Restaurant: 27885 I-45, The Woodlands,             Texas 77380                                                                                                                                 Phone: 281.362.0774 (4 Texas Locations)

Ohh La La Dessert Boutique: 770 W. Sam Houston Parkway N. Suite 500 Houston, Texas 77024                                                                                                                                 Phone: 713.465.6338  (3 Texas locations)

Sprinkles Cupcakes: 4014 Westheimer Road Houston, Texas 77027                        Phone: 713.871.9929 (Nationwide with 4 Texas locations) 

 

 

 

 

%d bloggers like this: