Monday, April 30, 2012

Easiest Ever "Baked" Beans

Hi!  How was everyone's weekend?  Mine was busy yet FUN!  On Saturday Noah's soccer team was in a local tournament which had them competing in 2 games.  They tied & won respectively.  He also had a ball hockey game and a hockey try out.  At the end of the day, as I was running him a nice bath, he informed me that every bone in his body hurt.  I reminded him that we tried to talk him out of one of the hockey time slots but he insisted on playing.  He then looks at me all matter of fact and says that just because he is sore doesn't mean that he was complaining.  HA!  His soccer team also played a game Sunday morning but lost so they were put out of the tourney.  Bummer for the boys, but that meant I had the rest of the day to did he!  Here's a group shot of his team this year;

It was a crisp weekend but thankfully sunny and dry! 

Moving on now to the meaning behind the title.....A few months back I was watching Jamie Oliver on the Food Network was I was huffing it on the elliptical.  One of the side dishes he made was a simple, quick "baked" bean recipe.  I've made this many times since, especially when I'm in need of a change from rice/quinoa/mac n cheese (that last one is for the fam).  On Friday I finally remembered to get my camera out and photograph the process!  So; here's how I make it! (You can just click on the link to see the original....remember; this is NOT my recipe!)

1)  Saute 4 slices of bacon.  I normally use reduced salt bacon because that's what I buy for regular in bacon & eggs.  Cook the bacon until it's just about crisp.  At this point it's up to you if you drain off the drippings or not.  Add 2 chopped tomatoes to the pan and stir it up...
I let this cook down for about 5 minutes before adding a 19oz can of white kidney beans, liquid and all.  I'm sure you could use whatever bean you'd like here.  Note that I'm not using the "butter beans" that Jamie uses...

Let simmer over low heat for 15-20 minutes.  The bean liquid will turn into a delicious thick & flavourful sauce.  This batch was paired with BBQ steak, but in my opinion, the beans stole the show!

You can see here how the sauce really thickens up quite a bit.  As far a spices go, I usually just add some pepper and chili powder, but it's easy enough to play around with the flavours you like.

One last thing; does anybody know what this is?  

I fell in love with the colour, bought 2, took them home and when Jason asked what they were I couldn't answer him because I just know know!  HELP!

And with that I am off!  Enjoy the week.....I'll try to pop back in with another post before the end of it.  :)

Bye for now!!

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Things I'm Loving Lately

Hi!  Thought I'd pop in and do a post on a few things that I'm really into lately.  
This spinach & artichoke dip is highly addictive!  I could seriously eat it by the spoonful, but have kept things lady like using carrot sticks and corn tortilla chips as appropriate vessels.  :)  It's also amazing used as a sandwich spread!
I'm sure you can imagine how divine this coconut spread is melted over pancakes or waffles, right??  Oh, so good!  I've also used it in baking and to saute veggies.  It was a little on the expensive side, but totally worth it.
More coconut!  This is the BEST yogurt I've ever eaten.  Unfortunately, I'm not the only one who feels this way because it's becoming really hard to find!  It's a fruit on the bottom yogurt and is thicker than regular yogurt, but not quite a thick as Greek.  I could basically swim in a tub of this and be happy forever.  LOL
I found this Choo-It granola/oat mix at Home Sense and decided to give it a go.  It's chock full of almonds, raisins, coconut, berries, oats, quinoa flakes....texture, texture, texture!  You can eat it hot or cold, mixed into yogurt or by the handful.
Not sure why I've been into this lately, but I've been drinking the grapefruit flavoured Perrier like it's going out of style!!
On to non-food goodies....although I do stick to my beloved coconut here....I've fallen in love with this J.R. Watkins Coconut & Honey Hand & Body lotion.  It's rich, creamy and luxurious, yet doesn't leave a "sticky" feeling like some creams do.    I've only had this a few days and have been using it on my hands at night.  They're already soft!  The reason this cream has seen hand action only is because I'm still using my next favourite product on the rest of my body:
Palmer's Cocoa Butter!  I mean, who doesn't want to smell like chocolate??  Seriously, though...this product is the bomb body lotion.  

So there you have it!  What is your favourite item lately?  I should also note that I bought all these products on my own.  I'm not receiving any sort of bonus for talking about and linking to any of the above items...

Bye for now!!

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Punta Cana!!!

Why hello!  We recently came back from our sunny vacation and I wanted to share a few photos of our week with you!  The weather was wonderful; only one day with rain and the resort was beautiful.  The people in the Dominican Republic are so very friendly.

Bye bye chilly Toronto....hello balmy Punta Cana!!

 The kids very first dip into the ocean!

 I bought this "scuba gear" at the Dollar Store.  The kids (and Jason) used it almost every day.  It was by far the best $4.00 I spent on item for the trip!  LOL

What a relaxing week!  There is something to be said about coming home after a week and sleeping in your own bed, though!  :)

I'm hoping to get back to blogging soon.  I miss posting, but have still been keeping up with all my favourite bloggers!  Truth be told, my life just isn't that interesting right now.  Working and driving the kids around doesn't really make for exciting reading material, ya know?  Noah's hockey season,which is a huge time commitment, is pretty much over until September so I anticipate more free time to dedicate to Krista's Kraving's.  Hope you'll all still be there when I get back on track!!

Bye for now!!