Sunday, September 23, 2012

Fall (?) Weekend

How was your weekend? Ours was wonderful- too quick! I did a little bit of everything- taught at the gym, went out to eat for a yummy meal, went to a wedding, a party, and spent time with family & friends. Good stuff. Wedding attire:


Beach outing:



Kaylin was intrigued by the ocean:



Kaylin and her Ami:


I also got a little time in the kitchen. I made a tasty batch of peanut butter, oatmeal chocolate chip cookies. More on these in another post:


What did you do this weekend? Make sure you enter my cookbook giveaway!!

Friday, September 21, 2012

Weelicious Spinach Gnocchi (Giveaway!!)

Sorry for going MIA! We have a wedding packed September/October and both Kay and I came down with some major ear issues. Luckily, we’re both doing better and are ready for a spectacular weekend (and another wedding!!).

On Thursday night, I was finally able to dive into a new cookbook, Weelicious (disclaimer: I received this cookbook for free):


According to the publisher: “As the creator of, Catherine brings parents daily recipes and tips for feeding picky eaters, as well as recipes that the whole family can enjoy. Now in her first cookbook,WEELICIOUS: ONE FAMILY, ONE MEAL, Catherine offers over 140 recipes that are fast, fresh, easy to prepare, and kid-approved! For more on the book, check out the Weelicious video trailer.”

I have bookmarked a ton of recipes, but decided to make the spinach gnocchi first:


Now, I made two changes…1. I used part skim ricotta and 2. I didn’t utilize a food processor to mix everything up.


I froze half of the gnocchi and cooked the rest:




So…about those two changes- they ended in disaster:


So, instead of boiling the gnocchi, I popped them under the broiler just to warm them through and it worked like a charm. Kay even gave them a go:



Josh, Kaylin & I loved the gnocchi. SO tasty and a totally genius idea!


Do you want to win a copy of the book? Leave me a comment on this post telling me what recipe you usually make when you have to please a crowd. You DO NOT need to have a blog to enter. Leave the comment by Tuesday, September 25 at noon. The winner will be randomly selected.

Are you ready for fall? Although I’d like to live in summer temperatures year round, I do enjoy fall treats. My favorite fall treats include pumpkin, apple, and these Clif Zbars (disclaimer: I received these for free). White chocolate chip brownies? I’m in!



What are you up to this weekend?

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Restaurant Week: Basil & Grill 225

Happy Sunday! I hope you are having a nice weekend so far. I have done a little bit of everything- dining out, cooking, working out (teaching, taking class, and running), and relaxing. This week is restaurant week in Charleston. On Thursday, we hit up Basil. I only got a picture of the wonton soup, but everyone enjoyed their meals:



On Saturday, we dressed fancy for one of our favorite restaurants in Charleston, Grill 225.


Some of the awesome dishes from the table, chopped Caesar salad:


Yonges Island salad:


Filet with onion strings:


Banana bread pudding…amazing:


Kay loved the bread basket as much as I do:


Today is the first official NFL football Sunday. We had a mini get together with turkey and beef burgers, all the fixings, fruit, chocolate chocolate chip cookie dough balls, chips & salsa, peanuts, and roasted eggplant, squash & potatoes:


mmm fruit!

Tell me about your weekend.

Monday, September 3, 2012

Chobani Cheesecake

Its secret recipe club time again!! As a part of the club, each month you’re assigned another Secret Recipe Club blogger to make a recipe from. If you want to join, click here to sign up.

This month, I was assigned Cheap Ethnic Eatz. Evelyne, the author, has been blogging since 2007. Evelyne is an avid cook and also loves her two cats, spending time with family and friends, and trying out new restaurants.

Since we were headed to my Aunt’s for a labor day weekend picnic/celebration of my birthday, I figured I would make the Greek Yogurt Cheesecake she posted.  I made a few changes:

1. I used 1/3 less fat neufchatel cheese:


2. I used Chobani 0% plain instead of Oikos:


3. I made a more traditional graham cracker crust.

Here is my version of the recipe:


  • 1 1/4 cups graham cracker crumbs

  • 3 tablespoons sugar

  • 5 tablespoons butter, melted

  • 6 egg whites

  • 1 pound lower fat cream cheese

  • 1 cup sugar

  • 2 tsp vanilla extract

  • 3 cups Plain (0%) Chobani Greek yogurt

  • Topping options: preserved fruit, fruits, sweets, nuts


1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F

2. Combine graham, sugar and butter.  Press into the bottom and up the sides of a 22-cm (9-inch) spring form pan. Bake for 12-13 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool to room temperature

3. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F

4. In the bowl of an electric mixer, whisk together the egg whites, cream cheese, sugar, and vanilla. Add the Greek yogurt and mix to combine. Pour the mixture into the prepared pan (I didn’t use all of the batter- it was a little too much) and bake for ~45 minutes, or until set. The filling will still look slightly soft.

5.Remove from oven and let the cheesecake stand at room temperature for one hour before topping with preserved fruit, fruit, sweets and/or nuts. Chill for a few hours (or overnight) until completely set.



Finished product:




Along with the cheesecake, I bought cookies and pasta salad to my Aunt’s house:


The cheesecake was a huge hit!


We had a blast at my Aunt’s hanging out, swimming, and just spending family time together:


What are you up to this labor day? After a fabulous birthday celebration yesterday, we’re relaxing!