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Posts Tagged ‘food’

Back in October 2012 my Foodie Pen Pal sent me a Vanilla Infusion Kit.

I could not wait to get it going. So I grabbed my Vodka and Vanilla Infusion Kit and got mixing. I was so excited to break this open and Make My Own. I had no idea something like this was even available. All you do to make your own is split the vanilla bean and fill with vodka. Then you store for 4 to 6 months, and BOOM you have your very own 7 year supply of Vanilla.  The key to making it last 7 years is to keep adding vodka to the bottle as you use it.

What makes homemade vanilla extract so much better than “store-bought”? First, you have control over the quality and type of vanilla used in the extract. Using premium grade vanilla beans will provide significantly better flavor and aroma than commercially produced extracts.  Simply take the 7 whole vanilla beans out of your infusion kit, split each bean lengthwise and add 8 ounces of 35%+ alcohol.  Any type of alcohol can be used, but bottom shelf vodka is most common because it will not add any additional flavors to the extract. Bourbon, rum and brandy can also be used. After 8 weeks, the vast majority of the extraction process is complete. For complete infusion 8 months is a typical time frame.  Once the vanilla is ready to use the vanilla beans can be removed, but If the vanilla beans are left in the bottle, the flavor will continue to evolve (just be sure the beans are always submerged in alcohol).

Well….Here is the fruit of my labor, and I love that it only required the labor of fill and wait.

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So I had to test it out!

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I made a Biscoff – Yogurt Vanilla Infused Fruit Dip.

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INGREDIENTS

  • 2  6-ounces Greek yogurt with honey  (can use with any yogurt with or without honey)
  • 2 tablespoon crunchy biscoff spread or any nut butter
  • 1/2 tablespoon infused vanilla extract
  • 1/8 teaspoon cinnamon
  • Add what you like…this recipe is so easy to incorporate YOUR favorite flavors

DIRECTIONS

  1. Mix all the ingredients in a bowl. Serve with sliced apples, berries and assorted fruits.
  2. Store unused portion in the fridge for 2-3 days.

* I have frozen this dip before and it thaws well. Just be ready to whip it up as it thaws to get back the original texture.

 

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I make this little dip often and I have to say that my favorite version is this one. The combination of the crunchy biscoff and my new vanilla extract really gave it a fun crunch and a warm vanilla flavor.

Fruit Dips and Yogurt Recipes of the Past. 

Check ya Later.

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Just wanted to share a post about what I have been up to this summer. To start I am now at a new job! I left my place of employment of 5 years for a new adventure. I am working more hours and am further from home, but I am loving the new responsibilities and learning new skills.  Now on to the good stuff…Weddings, Florida, Food and Fun.

I did some traveling to Florida this summer..Two Trips, and both for weddings! I love weddings.

Our first trip was in May to Key West for our Close Friends daughters wedding.

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I love everything about traveling. The airport, the planes, the anticipation. It all makes me happy. Even when I’m on a flight and experience a delay or a cancellation, I just add it to the excitement of the travel experience. I really just go with the flow. As it so happens there were delays and more delays in both my trips to Florida. So I walked away with flight vouchers from both my flights for future travel! I really see it as a bonus.
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Jeff and I love Key West. We have been there three times now over the years and LOVE it.

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Here we are relaxing in our condo pool in Key West. This is our very own private pool. This is our second time renting this condo just for the private pool. To quote Kid Rock my theme of this  vacation was “Chillin’ the Most”.

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Relaxing.

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Enjoying the sun. Doing what is required on any good vacation.

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We enjoyed Amazing Food. I get so excited about vacations mostly for the fresh fish. Being from Michigan I do not get the quality that I do in Florida for obvious reasons!

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We enjoyed many Key West Sunsets. Utter Perfection.

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We ate Lots of Oysters….Lots and Lots of Oysters.

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We enjoyed lots of dinners out on the town.

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No trip to Key West would be complete with out a slice of Key Lime Pie. Yum.

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Favorite meal was this Delicious Scallops and Grits. Ridiculously good.

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Lots of cocktails.

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and the topper on the vacation cake was the Beach Wedding Celebration.

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With my Honey.

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Enjoying the Moments….that make up any good vacation.

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We acted like Silly Kids.

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My next trip was in June for my Best Friend Jody’s wedding. I went solo. My husband was already obligated to go to another wedding for a family member. On a side note, we had 5 weddings this summer.

Jody lives in Miami and her wedding was on Marco Island. So I flew into Miami and spent a day there, then we drove to Marco Island for some fun and activities.

One of my favorite things was paddle boarding. This was my first time doing it and I am hooked. This was so much fun and such an amazing workout. Must look into getting my own board one day.

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Here is the wedding party getting our pre-wedding cardio workout in.

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Did someone say cake! Look at this amazing cake Jody had made for her wedding. It was beautiful.

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Here is my Best Friend Jody…Well I like to call her my Forever Friend. We just had our hair done.

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Look at the great gift bag my bride gave me for standing up in her wedding. Loved it. She spoiled me.

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Pre-Wedding Cocktail.

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Jody got married on a sunset dinner cruise. The boat was called the Marco Island Princess. It was an amazing venue. Perfect weather, great atmosphere. It truly was a perfect evening. I was a Co-Matron of Honor with Jody’s sister Amy.

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Our friendship theme is “I got your back”. So naturally we had to have a picture back to back.

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After the ceremony I robo-gripped my Jody and gave her the biggest hug I could. I was just so trilled that she found an amazing man to spend her life with. Her husband Ira is the best. It was beyond a special day for me standing at her side as she said her vows. She is like a sister to me and my emotions were overflowing as I looked upon their love and appreciation of one another. It was such a gift to be apart of their special day.

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The happy couple listening to the wedding party speeches.

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Dinner, Cocktails, then Party Time.

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Fun fact….Back when Jody first moved to Miami from Michigan, I went to see her and during my visit she had her first date with Ira, well I actually went on the first date with them. So for me it was like I was apart of their love right from the start.

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Toasting the Happy Couple.

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I love weddings. It always bring me back to how I felt on my Cherished day with my husband Jeffrey 18 years ago. Cheers to Love.

Sure hope your summer has been full of celebration and good times.

Here are some links to previous posts about my Best Friend Jody.

I’m in Miami Trick.

Chicken Soup for your Soul

Have you hugged your Best Friend Lately?

Check Ya Later.

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Just wanted to post some random eats, but also wanted to include a few other foodie type things in it.

Had a great dinner with my family at a local brewery which featured a Michigan Cherry Margarita.

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Ordered an Escargot Appetizer! Yummy. I mean really yummy.

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Got the Sushi Platter.
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Had a craving for some nut butter so I ordered Sarah’s Nutty Butter……My word that is one Smart Lady.  Cannot choose between the Gingerbread or the Caramel Latte so I won’t and I’ll eat BOTH.

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My friend Brooke, made me this super cool Luna Bar Vase.

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Tore up an Edible Arrangement. It had banana, strawberry and green apple in the assortment. Foodie Fun.

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My BF Jody sent me this book on Popsicles and this 4 pc. Spring Garden Measuring Cup Set. I love foodies gifts.

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Drank some Famous Dave’s Adult Punch.

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Crushed this Famous Dave’s Catfish and Ribs Dinner.

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Had a Vodka and Cranberry with friends.


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Just wanted to Share! Foodie Sharing is the BEST.

Check Ya Later.

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So a few weeks back one of my favorite bloggers Annette tackled a question I have long been confused by. How much protein do I need.

With magazines and diets stating the importance of protein in today’s diets, it’s important to know this essential nutrient does a lot more than fill you up. Your body uses protein to build and repair tissues, and it is an important building block of muscles and bones.

So how much protein do women need? According to studies some say most women need between 50 and 60 grams of protein a day, I have even read that active woman need up to 80 grams of protein a day. I used Annette’s method and found that I should be getting 63 Grams of protein per day. Well I wanted to see if I was close in my day-to-day meals so I randomly choose a day and calculated it.

Protein Challenge:

Breakfast: 22 Grams Total

  • Chobani 6 Ounce Yogurt – 13 Grams
  • 3/4 Cup Go Lean Cereal – 9 Grams
  • Fuji Apple – 0 Grams
Lunch: 33 Grams Total
  • Sabra Hummus Singles – 4 Grams
  • Whole Wheat Pita Bread – 3 Grams
  • Hard Boiled Egg – 17 Grams
  • Serving of Pretzels – 3 Grams
  • Mozzarella Cheese Stick – 6 Grams
Dinner: 19 Grams Total
  • 3 Ounces Marinated Lime Roasted Tofu – 8 Grams
  • Roasted Broccoli with 1 tbsp Oil – 3 Grams
  • 1 Cup Nasoya Japanese Noodles – 8 Grams
Snack: Zero
  • Archer Farms Dried Fruit Bar – 0 Grams
Results:
I came in at 74 Grams! 
But here’s the thing, I am not at all happy with the 19 grams for dinner. That’s the one meal I eat with my husband and I know he needs more protein than that, this of course is not our dinner every night, but it is a typical Monday night meatless meal for us. So I think in addition to the tofu, I will start adding an additional protein to this meal.
Another problem I found is that I change-up my cereal and I eat the Kashi Berry Blossoms and that cereal only has 3 grams of protein verse the Golean Crunch that has 9. So just by making a small change like switching cereal flavors and not looking at the protein values I could short myself 6 grams of protein. So all in all this has opened my eyes.

What are the best sources?

Most people with a well-rounded diet eat enough protein, but it’s important to include complete proteins, which contain all nine of the essential amino acids. Sources of complete protein include meat, fish, eggs, most dairy products, and soybeans. Fruits, vegetables, and whole grains are often missing certain amino acids, but they can be combined to make a complete protein meal.

And although meats contain high amounts of protein, be sure to consider how much saturated fat is in your cut. Here are a few good examples of low-fat, protein-packed foods:

Protein source Amount of protein (grams) Serving size
Tuna (yellow fish) 33 4 oz.
Roasted chicken 32 3/4 cup, diced
Lean flank steak 31 4 oz.
Soybeans 21 3/4 cup
Lentils 17 1 cup
Non-fat plain Greek yogurt 15 6 oz.

Some of my favorite foods scored really high on the protein list, here’s a few:

  • Tofu has 8 to 11 Grams of Protein in 4 Ounces
  • Quinoa has 9 Grams of Protein in 1 Cup
  • Veggie Burger has 13 Grams of Protein per Patty
 The great thing about learning new information is this, it’s never too late to make a change, it’s never late to improve your diet. That’s why Healthy Living Blogs are an essential part of my day, they feed me ideas, information, tip and support.
Question of the Day: Do you know how much protein you’re getting in your meals?
Check Ya Later.

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