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Monday, May 26, 2014

Smoothie Craze

We are all trying to stay healthy especially with Summer coming. I have recently lost 60lbs & feel awesome. Like many of you, I have gotten into the whole smoothie/juice craze that has swept the nation. I have always had a passion for my fave Jamba juice which is amazing & very healthy(try it soon if you never have!). The only problem is I don't have a Jamba close by! They did finally came out with frozen smoothie kits you can find in your grocery store. They are a little pricey at $3.69 a bag which gives you 2 drinks & really isn't that bad considering a small juice at the shop costs about $5. Today I am going to share with you my tips for making your own frozen smoothie kits at home. It's really not that hard. All you need is some non-fat yogurt,fruit & veggies, a sheet pan, icecube trays & a few ziploc bags. Whatever you do just use fresh produce! Ok, here we go!

AT HOME SMOOTHIE KITS: Each kit makes 1 8oz drink
Ingredients:
1) 2 cups of your favorite fruits & veggies(my faves are strawberries,peaches & spinach*), rinsed & dried well with paper towel. If possible use a salad spinner for leafy veggies.
2) enough yogurt to fill an ice cube tray
3)fresh lemon juice

Directions:
1) Prepare fruit. Berries can be left whole, stone fruits & banana can be cut in chunks.
2) Mix lemon juice with 6 Tbsp. water in a bowl. Give stone fruit & bananas a quick dip in the water & let dry.
3) Place fruit on a sheet pan & place in freezer until fruit is completely frozen-at least 12hrs. If using spinach or other leafy greens, puree them in a blender with a few tablespoons of water & freeze in ice cube trays.
4) Fill an ice cube tray with yogurt & place plastic wrap on top & place in freezer until frozen.
5) When fruit & yogurt cubes are frozen, place 4oz(mixture of fruit & yogurt cubes) in small ziploc baggies. Label bags!
To make a smoothie,combine 1 4oz bag of your mixture with 8oz juice(I like orange juice) & blend in a blender. You can also use a combination of juice & coconut water if you'd like.

I hope you will all join the juice craze and lets get healthy!

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Quick and Easy 2

Hello All!
Sorry for my absence lately...getting ready for a craft show I'm doing for my jewelry business. Since my life has been so hectic lately, I have needed to reach into my quick & easy recipes quite a few times! Everyone is looking for different ways to cook our favorite things most commonly chicken and the good old pork chop. I remembered this sweet & sour pork chop dish that my father used to make years ago that I haven't had in a long time so I decided to make it tonight-all I have to say is I'm so glad my father & I both remembered what went in it! Hope you all enjoy it as much as I do!
*P.S.-This can be made on the stovetop or in the oven!*

Sweet & Sour Pork Chops
Makes 4-6 boneless chops 1 in. thick
1 1/4c. Ketchup
3 Tbsp. Soy sauce
1 Tbsp. Cider or red wine vinegar(I sometimes like to add just about a teaspoon more)
1 Tbsp packed brown sugar
1 20oz. can pineapple chunks,juice reserved
1 red pepper cut into chunks

Directions:
1) If making in oven heat to 350 or heat your large skillet to medium high
2) For sauce: In saucepan,add all ingredients except the pepper & pineapple chunks & heat just until hot.  Add pepper & pineapple.
3)Brown pork chops in 2 Tbsp vegetable oil & drain.
4) If making on stovetop, return chops to skillet & add sauce. Cook with vented lid until chops are done. If making in oven place chops in baking dish & pour sauce over. 5)Cover with foil & bake until chops are done about 20-22 minutes depending on the size of chops.
Serve over white rice