The other day I had a wicked craving for bruschetta for dinner. I wanted a huge pile of it on top of delicious crusty bread. Except there were two problems: 1. I was fresh out of tomatoes and 2. I didn’t have delicious crusty bread handy. Womp Womp. And then I tried to convince myself that it was all for the best because it probably wasn’t great for me to eat a crap ton of crusty bread anyway. I just couldn’t get the thought of bruschetta out of my mind though so back to the kitchen I went to see what I could come up with. I had chicken and I had a lot of peaches.
So Peach Bruschetta Chicken. When I first thought about it, I was all like, “really? it seems weird. But it also sounds like it could be really good!” So there was only one way to find out, right?! And I was pleasantly surprised because this dish totally works. It’s really like you are just eating grilled chicken with peach salsa on top. I was actually more curious about how the peach topping would work with the cheese on top of the chicken, but again, it just works. I just think it’s so pretty with all of those luscious peaches on top! Make a big salad on the side and this is the perfect summer meal!
I’ve been on a frozen yogurt kick lately and while we love going out to our favorite frozen yogurt place, it can really add up! My ice cream maker has been begging for me to put it to use since the summer started and it was finally time to bust it out! I love making homemade ice creams, but I don’t always want to spend so much time prepping a custard base and all that jazz. This frozen yogurt is incredibly easy to prepare and doesn’t require any preparation on the stove top, you just simply mix a few ingredients in a bowl and it goes right into the ice cream maker! I went with vanilla because it’s the perfect vehicle for any topping from fruit to nuts, chocolate, caramel sauce, etc…Oh and I couldn’t forget a vanilla bean. Is there anything more gorgeous than those specks of vanilla bean?!
There are a number of things that my husband and I miss about living in Tallahassee. It’s a much smaller town compared to Phoenix obviously, but it had its charms. It was my home for 11 years while I completed both my undergraduate and graduate degrees so obviously we miss being around so many crazy Seminole fans! We miss the weather with rainy summer days and cold winter nights. We miss how quick and easy it was to get around. And then there are the restaurants. Our favorite burger place? Monks. Everybody loves Monks and it’s mostly because of their burgers.
I guess if I had to say I had any pregnancy cravings, I would say burgers might be one of them. I definitely get cravings for red meat. It must be the iron. I learned early on in this pregnancy that I could not stand taking prenatal vitamins with iron as they were making me feel really sick so I had to find vitamins without it. Now all my iron has to come from food. Enter burgers!
I am really excited today because I get to share one of my favorite shortcut food products with you guys! I have been a fan of MorningStar Farms for years now. Their variety of veggie burgers have been a staple in my freezer and make for the perfect lunch and snacks! Although I am not a vegetarian, I do like to go meatless when I can and I love how easy MorningStar Farms makes this for me. I’m always in a rush out the door in the mornings and even when I’m working at home, I often need to eat a quick lunch so just having to go to the freezer is a lifesaver!
The other reason I love MorningStar Farms is because I can eat their products and am not left feeling guilty afterwards because they help me maintain a healthy-eating lifestyle.
One of my favorite products is the Original Sausage Patties. There are so many ways to use them up for breakfast, lunch, and dinner! Obviously, I use them the most for breakfast though and am sharing two of my favorite recipes today plus one more way you can incorporate them into your dinner!
Ok, so this post is going to be all over the place I fear, but it’s long overdue!
The First Trimester
I knew pretty quickly that I was pregnant. I’m always right on time (tmi?!) so when Aunt Flow didn’t show up on schedule, I took a test the next day. It said yes, but it was one of those ones with the plus sign and it wasn’t totally clear so I needed more convincing. We made a quick trip to Target and got three different tests (yes, three), got home, and then waited. It was the longest 3 minutes ever. We had all of the tests lined up in a row on the bathroom counter and just waited for an answer. After they all came up positive, we freaked out! Well at least I did. When you first learn that you are expecting, a lot of thoughts go through your mind: “I better call the doctor to make sure”, “what if the tests are all wrong?”, “should we tell our family?”, “when should we tell people?!” So many things. I figured we should first confirm what all the tests said. I got into the doctor’s office bright and early the next morning. They have you take a test there and then there is more waiting. When the nurse finally came in, she handed me a stack of papers about being pregnant, what to eat, what not to eat, medicines I could take, etc.. I was like, “So am I pregnant?!” I’m horrible at keeping a secret from family so after a quick chat with my husband, we decided to tell our parents right away. Lots of excitement and freaking out!
I would sum up for the first trimester with three words: Nausea, exhaustion, and fear. I know a lot of women suffer from horrible morning sickness in the first trimester and I consider myself pretty lucky because I only actually got sick once, but had all-day nausea from weeks 5-8 that was pretty debilitating for me. Going to work was really hard because I didn’t want to tell anybody yet, but I was feeling so horrible. I pretty much lived on chicken noodle soup, saltine crackers, and ginger ale. I had to have a stack of saltines next to my nightstand to munch on every morning before I started moving around and continued to eat them all throughout the day. I barely cooked anything. Blogging was also really tough. Luckily, I had a good build up of recipes saved so I tried to post when I could, but looking at photos of certain recipes totally grossed me out even though I know they were good recipes. I was also ridiculously exhausted to the point where I wasn’t sure how I was going to function at work.
We shared the big news in waves. Family obviously knew first along with a few close friends. I had to tell my boss at 6 weeks because the nausea was affecting my schedule at work and I didn’t want her to think I was slacking off. I wanted to wait until we were out of the first trimester to share the news with the rest of our friends and co-workers. I work with a bunch of fun ladies so once I hit 14 weeks, I brought in some cupcakes one day and told them that I brought them a treat for working so hard and put a bunch of these cupcakes on the table that had little babies on top.
I thought they would get it right away, but apparently they thought I was calling them a bunch of babies…sigh…that’s only slightly true, btw.
This week can be summed up with the following two words: baby registry. I cannot believe how overwhelming it is to put together a baby registry as a first time parent. I mean, I have a lot of experience with babies and children. I know all about their development as a developmental psychologist. But as far as which stroller is best or which type of bottle, it’s just too much. Why are there so many different types of bottles?! A lot of people say registering for a baby is so much fun, and while I can kind of understand that, I also just someone else do it for me or I just want to do it all while sitting on my couch. I owe you guys a big baby/pregnancy update so I promise to write one up this weekend!
Alright, enough about baby stuff. Let’s talk sweet potato fries (I know, what a strange transition…). I really don’t like to turn on the oven too much during this time of the year, but we love to do fancy sandwiches or burgers on Saturday nights and sweet potato fries just always seem like the perfect side dish! These fries are baked saving you both fat and calories, but there is no sacrifice in flavor! In fact, these guys are even more flavorful than regular fries thanks to the zesty spice mixture of chili powder and cumin with a pinch of cayenne!
My name is Stephanie. I started this blog because I like to cook and I wanted a place where I could share my recipes with family and friends and improve my cooking skills. Why the name Eat. Drink. Love.? Well, I think this is what life is all about!