"The best times you are going to have in life are at the dinner table and in bed." Old Italian saying. So relax, and enjoy the simple things!

30.1.14

Orange Chicken: Happy Chinese New Year #Foodie Friday

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Orange Chicken: simplelivingeating.com


Happy Chinese New Year 4712 the year of the horse.
A galloping horse may come to your mind which is exactly what this year is about: travel.  I have been enjoying traveling through my cooking. I am really getting a feel for Chinese cooking which is exciting because my family loves it so much.

Since the time I lived in Chinatown in New York City I have enjoyed Chinese New Year. The Red Lantern parade is really something to see. If you live near a city that has a Chinatown try to attend it one year. You won't be disappointed by the costumes and the fireworks.


http://www.demotix.com/news/1026174/chinatown-hosts-chinese-new-year-parade-new-york/all-media http://www.familyvacationcritic.com/blog/index.php/2014/01/san-franciscos-annual-chinese-new-year-festival-parade/http://jeffcable.blogspot.com/2013/03/new-york-city-chinese-new-year-parade.html

There are many traditions involved with Chinese New Year. One of them is giving oranges to friends and family. Orange sounds like the word for gold in Chinese, so when you give an orange you are symbolically giving wealth and prosperity. 


Chow Mein Noodles: simplelivingeating.com

Dishes made with orange are common over this holiday, along with eating long noodles which symbolize longevity. I put both of these traditions together in my Orange Chicken dish.

May this year bring health, wealth and good travels to you and your family. 


Orange Chicken: simplelivingeating.com


Orange Chicken

by Diane Balch
simplelivingeating.com

preparation: 30 minutes                                        Serves: 4 - 6

Ingredients:

sauce:
1/4 cup soy sauce
1 cup orange juice
zest of one orange
1/4 cup of dark brown sugar
1 teaspoon of grated ginger
1/4 teaspoon of red cayenne pepper
1/4 teaspoon of Chinese Five Spice Powder
2 tablespoons of corn starch


1 pound of boneless skinless chicken breast chopped 1 inch cubes
1 red pepper chopped
1 bunch of broccoli chopped
4 cloves of garlic chopped
1 can 5 ounce Sliced Water Chestnuts drained
2 6 ounce packages of Chow Mein Noodles
soy sauce
sesame oil
vegetable oil


Directions:

1) Bring large sauce pot of salted water to a boil for the noodles.

2) Whisk the ingredients for the sauce together in a large bowl.

3) Put the chopped chicken into the sauce to marinade. This can be for a few minutes, hours, or overnight.

4) Heat a large skillet or wok with about 1/4 cup of vegetable oil on medium high heat. Saute the broccoli, red pepper and garlic with 1 tablespoon of water until they start to soften.

5) Move the vegetables to the sides of the skillet/wok and put the chicken pieces into the pan. Do not add the sauce yet. Saute the chicken until it is opaque. A metal spatula works well so you can scrap the bottom on the pan to prevent sticking. 

6) Mix the chicken well with the vegetables and add the sauce. Heat through and cover with a lid until noodles are cooked.

7) When noodles are cooked toss them with about 1/4 of soy sauce and 2 tablespoons of sesame oil… Do this to taste.

8) Serve the chicken on top of the noodles. 




Remember to visit and follow my co-host Adelina at Home Maid Simple to find out what blogger she is featuring this week!!!




Foodie Friday Features:

From: Our Family World

  Pomegranate Avocado & Cabbage Salad
Pomegranate Avocado & Cabbage Salad

Now here is the perfect healthy and interesting starter to you Valentine Meal.




From: The Adventures of MJ and HungryMan

Bulgogi Kimchi Whole Wheat Pizza
Bulgogi Kimchi Whole Wheat Pizza

Hands down this is the most unusual pizza I have ever encountered. I learned about the beef dish Bulgogi and how to use it on a Korean Pizza…way cool.





From: Makin' it Mo' Betta

Special Ingredient Chocolate Pie
I'm giving the special ingredient away it's silken tofu. I used to make this pie when I was off of dairy. It is so delicious and low in calorie. It may even be a bit healthy…try this. 





Instructions for Foodie Friday linky:

This is a food party please link up only 3 food related posts. Thank you. 

Click on at least 3 other recipes.

SUBSCRIBE TO THE PARTY HOSTS:  BY EMAIL OR RSS... 

or FRIEND ME ON FACEBOOK

SPREAD THE WORD: PIN, FB, TWEET ETC... this party. It is good for you and me.

1) Copy the Foodie Friday Button's html from this website's sidebar.

2) Paste this html to the html page of the recipe you want to link to Foodie Friday. You can also make a word link or post our button on your sidebar.  
 Please link back.
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5) Past your link and type in the name of the recipe, not your name.

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By posting in this party you are giving this blog permission to reprint (with a link to your post) in recipe roundups and featured posts any recipes/articles you share with us.



This post is shared on the following parties:


Tuesday Food:
Hearth & Soul Blog Hop @ 21st Century Housewife
Totally Tasty Tuesday @ Mandy's Recipe Box
Show Me What You Got @ Our Delightful Home
In & Out of the Kitchen @ Feeding Big & More
Tuesday's Table @ Love in the Kitchen
Tasty Tuesday #Anyonita Nibbles
Share your Stuff Tuesday @ Table for Seven

Wednesday Food:

From Dream to Reality @ DYI Dreamer
 Wednesday Whatsit @White Lights on Wednesday 
Fresh Foods Wednesdays @ Gastronomical Sovereignty
Wonderful Food Wednesdays at @ All She Cooks
Look What I Made @ Creations by Kara

Thursday Food:

Full Plate Thursday @ Miz Helen's Country Cottage
Thriving on Thursdays @ Domesblissity


Friday Food:

Foodie Friday @ Home Maid Simple
Friday Favorite (DYI too) @ Simple Sweet Home
Foodie Friday @ Rattlebridge Farm 
Weekend Potluck @ Sunflower Supper Club
Friday Linky Party @ The Pin Junkie 
Freedom Fridays @ Love Bakes Good Cakes
Inspiration Spotlight @ Dear Creatives











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29.1.14

Paris-Brest: Cream Puff Ring #French Fridays with Dorie

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Paris-Brest: Simple Living and Eating


"A giant cream puff, who cares?" was my first thought about making the Paris-Brest. I wasn't even the one who was going to make it. The honors go to my pastry chef daughter.

I thought the story of the dessert was charming.. made to resemble a bicycle wheel to be served at the end of a race from Paris to Brest that has been taking place since 1891… yes, but it was still just a cream puff.


http://gccfla.org/brevet/brevets.html
http://gccfla.org/brevet/brevets.html

Quelle surprise! This dessert was nothing short of orgasmic… a simple puffed pastry dough filled with vanilla pastry cream, who would have guessed it would bring so much pleasure. The cream was not too sweet, not too much vanilla flavor…a perfectly rich consistency. The pastry.. light and buttery with a little flake to it, but not sticky.. just a wonderful eating experience. 


filling the Paris-Brest: simple living and eating


 We didn't even have almonds on ours because of my daughter's nut allergy. I kept cutting another little piece…an another little piece, until the wheel disappeared.


paris-brest: simple living and eating

Thank goodness there was a little bit of dough and cream left over to make cream puffs.


cream puffs: simple living and eating


I can assure you these quickly disappeared too…

Here is a Paris-Brest Recipe… but if you want Dorie's, and you do, you really do… get the cookbook: Around My French Table.


Note: As a member of French Friday's with Dorie I am not allowed to print the recipe. I invite you to take a look at this wonderful cookbook "Around My French Table" if you are interested in this or any other recipe I review. 



Click here to see how the other Dorista's did.





This post is shared on the following food/craft parties: 


Tuesday Food:
Hearth & Soul Blog Hop @ 21st Century Housewife
Totally Tasty Tuesday @ Mandy's Recipe Box
Show Me What You Got @ Our Delightful Home
In & Out of the Kitchen @ Feeding Big & More
Tuesday's Table @ Love in the Kitchen
Tasty Tuesday #Anyonita Nibbles
Share your Stuff Tuesday @ Table for Seven

Wednesday Food:

From Dream to Reality @ DYI Dreamer
 Wednesday Whatsit @White Lights on Wednesday 
Fresh Foods Wednesdays @ Gastronomical Sovereignty
Wonderful Food Wednesdays at @ All She Cooks
Look What I Made @ Creations by Kara

Thursday Food:

Full Plate Thursday @ Miz Helen's Country Cottage
Thriving on Thursdays @ Domesblissity


Friday Food:

Foodie Friday @ Home Maid Simple
Friday Favorite (DYI too) @ Simple Sweet Home
Foodie Friday @ Rattlebridge Farm 
Weekend Potluck @ Sunflower Supper Club
Friday Linky Party @ The Pin Junkie 
Freedom Fridays @ Love Bakes Good Cakes
Inspiration Spotlight @ Dear Creatives

28.1.14

Feng Shui for Westerners: Having a Harmonious Living Space #Simple Living in Practice

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http://www.aidecworld.com/cosmology/feng-shui-for-homes-and-small-businesses/
http://www.aidecworld.com/cosmology/feng-shui-for-homes-and-small-businesses/


It is almost Chinese New Year, so I wanted to share a Chinese Simple Living idea with you. It is call Feng Shui which is the art of arranging a living space in a way that will promote the most health, prosperity, and strong personal relationships.

I learned about Feng Shui years ago when I sold real estate while I was in graduate school. I was selling a condominium complex and people from China and Japan would often comment about how good the Feng Shui of the property was… not knowing what they were talking about I had to agree that it was a most pleasing location: right on a river, most units faced South and had sunlight all day… yes, the Feng Shui was wonderful.

So what I'm trying to say is that you don't have learn the technicality of Feng Shui in order to take some advice from it's principles and beliefs. Here are a few.

1)  Eliminate clutter. Clutter stagnates the energy of your home. When my home is in disarray I feel confused and disoriented. It is harder to make decisions when I can't find things I need. If you are trying to get out of the door, not being able to find your stuff stagnates you for sure… So get rid of the things in your house that you aren't using, and make a "place" for the things that you keep, so you don't waste time trying to find them.


2) Don't start to cook until your kitchen is clean. Bad energy will go into your food and it won't be as nourishing. The process of preparing a meal creates mess, and if you already have a mess in your kitchen you are just going to make it worse. It is harder to find the right ingredients and have the room to prepare the food well… so yes, the meal will not come out as good, and that can't be as healthy for you as a meal that was prepared without stress in a clean organized environment.


3) Bedrooms are for sleeping and sex only. Having a TV, computer or even worse.. your work space in your bedroom does not promote relaxation. Studies have been done over the years that show that the light from TVs and especially from computer screens can off set your circadian rhythm, making it harder for you to have quality sleep. Seeing your work space, and what you need still to do before you go to bed is detrimental to good rest… You are literally sleeping with your work. So, pack up the electronics and the desk and move them out of the bedroom.

If you are interested in learning more about Feng Shui I found the following books very interesting:








27.1.14

Greek Yogurt: Stonyfield's NEW flavors: "You gotta try this #StonyfieldGreek!" #Healthy Eating #Weekly Menu Plan

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Stonyfield Greek Yogurt w/ Granola: simple living and eating


Product provided by Stonyfield. Opinions are 100% my own.

Most mornings I start my day with Stonyfield's Greek Yogurt over granola. I love the indulgent creamy texture of Greek yogurt and the scrumptious flavor choices offered by Stonyfield. I was already a fan of their Blueberry, Strawberry and Superfruits flavors now Stonyfield has added Black Cherry and Cafe Latte to their line of Greek yogurts.

You gotta try these new flavors. I adore the taste of cherry and this yogurt just pops with tart cherry taste. I was surprised at much I enjoyed the coffee flavor of their cafe latte. I've made it my mid-morning coffee break snack.. with a few pieces of dark chocolate, I am transported to a cafe in Paris…

Stonyfield caffe latte greek yogurt: simple living and eating


I've been praising the creamy texture and exceptional taste of these yogurts, but I know I am buying a lot more when I purchase Stonyfield Yogurt. I know my family and I are not consuming pesticides and added hormones that are present in non-organic yogurt.

stonyfield greek yogurt: simple living and eating

It can be hard to eat all organic foods, but every article I've read about the values of eating organic always emphasis the importance of eating organic dairy products. Buying organic milk, butter, and yogurt are a top priority for me and Stonyfield is the company I trust. They have been around for over 30 years and their reputation is stellar.

So give their products a try… for the taste and for your health and well being. 

To learn more about Stonyfields products and the importance of eating organic dairy products go to:
Visit Stonyfield.com, follow them on Twitter.com/stonyfield or find them on Facebook.com/StonyfieldFarm. 


Weekly Menu Plan:


Sunday: Italian Sunday Gravy w/rigatoni and salad

Meatless Monday: Onion Quiche with Tomato Salad

Tuesday: Trader Joe's Mahi Mahi burgers on Brioche Rolls with Cole Slaw

Wednesday: Spiced Chicken with Collard Greens & Roasted Potatoes

Thursday: Shrimp w/ Garlic Olive Oil sauce over Black Linguini and Arugula Salad

Friday: Breaded Tilapia with Israeli Cous Cous and Zucchini

Saturday: Chickpea Patties with Stonyfield Yogurt Tzatziti and a Greek Salad.

This post is shared on:




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23.1.14

Steamed Mussels: Moules Mariniere #French Fridays with Dorie #Foodie Friday

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Steamed Mussels: Moules Mariniere: Simple Living and Eating


It's a Dorista Foodista post. The day I recovered from my cold I left for a cross country ski trip with my family. I have been doing laundry for the last two days. Let me tell you when you XC ski you sweat right through to your coat, everything, gloves, hats, etc. need to be washed, so I haven't had a lot of blogging time this week.



The skiing was amazing. Perfect XC weather. Temps in the 20's, clear and bright.. a little dusting of new snow… all that you can ask for. I was still a bit wiped out from my illness, so I spent a little more time reading by the lodge fire than the rest of clan. I highly recommend the place we stayed: The Garnet Hill Lodge: well priced, gorgeous trails, good food. 



On the topic of good food… mussels ranks as one of my family's favorites. Since my kids were toddlers they have been fascinated with dissecting steamed mussels. Why I never prepare them at home I don't know? They are inexpensive, and most fish shops will sell them to you debearded and scrubbed; so all you have to do is steam them in your favor sauce.

I grew up in a beach town in Connecticut, along with being Southern Italian we ate mussels all of the time, usually the sauce was a Marinara with tons of garlic.


http://www.anothertravelguide.com/eng/europe/belgium/brussels/connoisseurs_guide_/the_incredible_taste_travels_of_sirmais/culinary_babel_of_brussels/


I didn't really fall in love with mussels until I went to Brussels. 

Yes, mussels in Brussels are exceptional. 

There are many street kiosks that serve over stuffed pots of mussels with your choice of sauce along with french fries. Moules and pommes frites are everywhere to enjoy.


https://www.frieze.com/issue/article/questionnaire-laure-prouvost/
This is literally how full the pots of mussels are that they serve in Brussels.

Dorie's moules mariniere is a classic way to prepare mussels. It is basically a chicken broth and white wine sauce seasoned with some shallots, garlic, and onions with a little bit of thyme and parsley. I recommend cutting Dorie's mussel portion in half, but doubling her sauce. My family likes to have lots of juice to dip crusty bread into…I think they like this as much or more than the mussels. Dorie's recipe was tasty but not exceptional.

My favorite way to prepare mussels is the Beligum way in a sauce of their famed Chimay Beer



Steamed Mussels: Simple Living and Eating

Belgian Mussels

by Diane Balch
simplelivingeating.com

preparation time: 10 minutes                                 serves: 2 - 4

Ingredients:

2 pounds of scrubbed debearded fresh mussels
1 tablespoon of butter
1 shallot chopped
4 cloves of garlic chopped
1 teaspoon of salt
1 teaspoon of pepper
1 teaspoon of rosemary
1 teaspoon of thyme
1/4 cup of fresh parsley chopped
1 cup of vegetable broth
1 cup of Chimay or other Belgian beer


Directions:

1) In a large stock pot heat the butter on medium high heat. Saute the shallot and garlic until limp. Add the seasoning and heat the herbs for about a minute.

2) Add the beer and vegetable broth to the pot and bring it to a boil.

3) When the liquid is boiling add the mussels. Stir them up in the sauce and cover them. Lower the heat to a simmer and let the mussels steam for about 4 minutes. 

4) Open the pot and stir the mussels. They should mostly be all open. If not cover the lid and let them steam for another minute or two. Do not eat any mussels that did not open. 

Serve with crusty bread for dipping and crisp french fries. 





Remember to visit and follow my co-host Adelina at Home Maid Simple to find out what blogger she is featuring this week!!!


Foodie Friday Features:


From: Lou Lou Girls

Homemade soft pretzel bites
Homemade Soft Pretzel Bites

Your Superbowl party will be a touchdown with these chewy salty bites.



From: Cooking on the Front Burner

Lemon Chicken Orzo Soup
Lemon Chicken Orzo Soup

Chicken soup is so great for colds and winter weather…add some tasty and vitamin C rich lemon and your have a super winter soup.


From: Ma Niche

Koffiebroodjes: Dutch Sweet Rolls
Koffiebroodjes: Dutch Sweet Rolls

A buttery ginger roll filled with cream and raisins.. perfect for a special breakfast. 



Instructions for Foodie Friday linky:

This is a food party please link up only 3 food related posts. Thank you. 

Click on at least 3 other recipes.

SUBSCRIBE TO THE PARTY HOSTS:  BY EMAIL OR RSS... 

or FRIEND ME ON FACEBOOK

SPREAD THE WORD: PIN, FB, TWEET ETC... this party. It is good for you and me.

1) Copy the Foodie Friday Button's html from this website's sidebar.

2) Paste this html to the html page of the recipe you want to link to Foodie Friday. You can also make a word link or post our button on your sidebar.  
 Please link back.
3) Copy the link to the recipes you want to add to Foodie Friday, not your homepage. 
4) Click on "your next" on this page.

5) Past your link and type in the name of the recipe, not your name.

6) Choose how you want to download the photo.
By posting in this party you are giving this blog permission to reprint (with a link to your post) in recipe roundups and featured posts any recipes/articles you share with us.



This post is shared on the following parties:


Tuesday Food:
Hearth & Soul Blog Hop @ 21st Century Housewife
Totally Tasty Tuesday @ Mandy's Recipe Box
Show Me What You Got @ Our Delightful Home
In & Out of the Kitchen @ Feeding Big & More
Tuesday's Table @ Love in the Kitchen
Tasty Tuesday #Anyonita Nibbles
Share your Stuff Tuesday @ Table for Seven

Wednesday Food:

From Dream to Reality @ DYI Dreamer
 Wednesday Whatsit @White Lights on Wednesday 
Fresh Foods Wednesdays @ Gastronomical Sovereignty
Wonderful Food Wednesdays at @ All She Cooks
Look What I Made @ Creations by Kara

Thursday Food:

Full Plate Thursday @ Miz Helen's Country Cottage
Thriving on Thursdays @ Domesblissity


Friday Food:

Foodie Friday @ Home Maid Simple
Friday Favorite (DYI too) @ Simple Sweet Home
Foodie Friday @ Rattlebridge Farm 
Weekend Potluck @ Sunflower Supper Club
Friday Linky Party @ The Pin Junkie 
Freedom Fridays @ Love Bakes Good Cakes
Inspiration Spotlight @ Dear Creatives








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