Category Archives: foodie, recipe, baking, cooking

Bland Brown Rice, Wheat Pasta…Sazon Is Here! 

Hey guys!  Everyone at one time or another is on a “clean” eating journey, whatever that means to you.  I restart my healthier eating journey about ever 4 days LOL!  Yes commitment is not my strong suit.  And it’s not that I don’t like healthier options, in fact I love healthy foods, I just love the other end of the spectrum just as merch.  The struggle is real.


Taste is a big thing for me! And personally I believe brown rice and wheat pasta is a spawn of the devil.  You can’t debate me on this!  However ya sister friend has a few tips to overcome the battle of  edible tree bark a.k.a. brown rice & pasta.  

No I’m not reinventing the wheel and it may be amateur for the real chefs outchea but there’s some new soul out here who’s ready to go hard in the paint on a healthy food journey and won’t get pass the 1st bite when they’re instantly reminded of what tree bark may taste like.  Then pair it with bland piece of chicken or fish and corner taco shop here I come.  Or at the very least back on the white rice and pasta kick.

Sazon has been a saving grace.  Yes I can sea salt it down to the ground but there’s nothing like a Spanish flavored meal.  There’s multiple Sazon flavored packets, so far I’ve used con azafron and achiote and both are DELICIOUS!  I haven’t used it on my meats…yet, I tend to use a lawrys taco packets for my chicken and for my fish of choice flounder and snapper I bake it with Mrs Dash, lemon pepper and garlic powder, BUT you can easily use Sazon for your meats in fact it’s suggested.   Additional tip: You can easily use a bouillon as well but I’m bouilloned out honey!

but Sazon has given me hope on all things whole grain and wheat and I’m glad because I truly need to clean up my diet more than 3 weeks at a time.  Tired of the food reindeer games I play often!

*For 2 cups of rice I add 2 packets.  

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Alfredo Lovers In The House! Semi Homemade Deliciousness.


Ok along with being the cocktail chick, I’m the “can I get extra” chick!  I’m the “and make that an EXTRA side of sauce, extra bread, extra ice”…and so on and so on.  Yes I’m a basket case and not ashamed 💤💤


Directions:

1 cup of heavy cream 

2 tbl butter

1  tbl minced or crushed  garlic

1 tbl of flour 

Red crush pepper (optional)

1/4 c of freshly grated Parmesan cheese 

Italian seasonings (I used dried Italian seasoning) but fresh is always best

S/P to taste

*Adjust recipe to serving size.  This will cover 1 standard box of pasta (serving size 4)

In a sauce pot bring heavy cream almost to a boil, then add flour and whisk until smooth with no lumps. Reduce temperature to medium low then add butter, s/p, garlic, red crush pepper, then slowly add cheese and whisk til smooth & creamy.  Taste test and add whatever seasoning you want more of.  Let simmer for about 5 minutes (watch/whisk frequently) then WAAAALAH! Pour over pasta, use for pizza sauce (I make a slammin chicken and spinach alfredo pizza), dipping bread sticks etc. 

It’s a standard delicious Alfredo sauce that can be used for anything Italian requiring a white sauce. It also keeps for about a week in fridge our you can freeze for a longer time.

Because that jar stuff’ll kill you man 

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Don’t forget a classy pricey bottle of wine like Lambrusco LOL! Yes its twist cap and damn delicious so shaddup and drank! 

Foodie Reports 

Ok ok ok, I know my food presentation is not the best, HOWEVER this damn dish was! So quick and easy.  So delicious, flavorful and filling.  Yes my family and I got our lives along with a few well worth it calories in this dish. Anything that will feed these crumb snatchers in under an hour is my bff. 

Ingredients:

Box Spanish yellow rice (any brand) y’all know I usually make my own but I didn’t have saffron. I tend to hate box preserved pre seasoned foods BUT…

Hillshire Farm’s Chicken Garlic Sausage 

Sweet Onion

Colorful bell peppers 

1 skillet

25 minutes (45 total if you count dicing, searing & sauté) 

I do sear/sauté meats and veggies about 3 minutes first, then I add and followed the directions of the Spanish rice and 25 minutes later WAHLAH! 

DONE! Literally DONE.  Between the sausage and the Spanish rice all your seasoning is incorporated just right! And trust me I! Don’t! Do! Bland! 

I paired this delicious meal with my favorite veggie asparagus and if you don’t want to make separate veggies throw in broccoli florets the last 10 minutes.  I also made a fresh Caesar salad with freshly grated Parmesan cheese and my DIY Greek yogurt Caesar dressing yummmm and 1 glass of my new favorite ripple Lambrusco red wine TWIST CAP of course LMAO! Now, since it’s rice I didn’t do bread, but that’s always an option. OR you can simply eat this by itself. It’s a meal in 1. 

This fed a family of 4 no leftovers but my kids had seconds.  If feeding more than that or you want leftovers, double the recipe. HAPPY EATING.

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Kid’s Party Food Sure To Be A Hit!


Easy delicious corn dog recipe! Did this about 6 yrs ago now at my kid’s birthday party and it was a hit!  I couldn’t get them out fast enough!  In fact the adults ate just as many as the kids.  It doesn’t have to be just a birthday party food,  you can serve for lunch, play dates etc. but a little goes a long way at a party and rarely do kids NOT like hot dogs. A kid who doesn’t  eat hot dogs are spies and you have to watch them 👀 them closely! Also you can do a healthier dog like turkey, chicken or beef and of course my favorite reason…YOU CONTROL THE INGREDIENTS!! Now LESGO!

*FIRST soak wooden sticks in water 30 minutes prior to cooking (1) box of cornbread  mix (e.g. jiffy cornbread) (2) Follow exact mixing directions on box of jiffy (3) Add 1 tsp of garlic & onion powder (4) Heat a pot 1/2 way  with vegetable oil (5) Lightly flour the hot dogs to remove moisture (6) I cut the dogs in 1/2 if for kids events (plus it fits easier into the pot when dipping corn dogs to fry) (7) Dip and coat lightly floured hot dogs very well in jiffy mix (8) Dip in heated oil and fry 2 min or until golden brown 


Serve w ketchup/mustard, cole slaw, fruit, chips, french fries etc. 
I love Ball Park Beef dogs, Hebrew National Beef dogs or for large crowds I use Costco Beef dogs, Oscar Mayer turkey Dogs, and if that doesn’t matter to you then Dodger Dogs (sold at Costco) are so damn good, I just don’t buy regular dogs anymore but if I did Oh! Yes! Ma’am! I use wooden kabob sticks from .99 store (wooden sticks are optional you can just make mini hand held corn dogs)

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Ben & Jerrys Is The Biz-Nas


Ma’am!  Let me explain this shat to you! I already  love all things toffee, however I’m not the biggest sweet eater, I’m kinda the meat and potatoes type chick, BUT baaaaaaaaybay bay bay bay bay!!!! COFFEE TOFFEE BAR CRUNCH THIS RIGHT HERE!  THIS RIGHT HERE! Will make you


I’ll leave this short & sweet…just if you get a chance, handle your sweet tooth business 

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Lemon Water vs. Cola 

SODA

I know I knowwwwwwww!  Soda, in particular my favorites Pepsi/Coke is THE WORST, but I swear I hear angels singing soon as I get a whiff, sip or a look.  “Hi I’m CocktailsnChatter and I’m an addict🙋🏾”  now don’t get me wrong I can go several weeks, even a couple of months and not touch the stuff, but then a food (e.g. Pizza) or a really bad premenstrual cycle can/will trigger my addiction.  During those times I can actually smell it without it being in my presence.  YOU HEAR ME?!  I can smell it as if I have a glass in front of me.  

Water


The good thing is I absolutely love water in particular flavored water like lemon, cucumber, strawberry, mint etc. a combination of all or anyone alone but YUM YUM YUM!  I’ve always loved water just as much as any dark cola.  A crisp cold glass of h2o puts me in a happy place!  That’s probably the only thing that has saved me from acne/blemishes.  Oh yeah I can take down a refreshing gallon of water like its nothing.   

TRUTH

I’m going to be honest…I don’t see myself EVER GIVING UP COLA! Nope! Some people it’s cigarettes, chocolate,  recreational (medicinal) activities, adrenaline driven activities blah blah blah maybe I am trying to justify my bad habit but oh well…yes I’m aware dark sodas cleans & polishes car batteries and porcelain toilets (ewwwwwwww), but in a tall glass it releases all my endorphins and puts me in a happy place.  Yes, it’s made it harder to lose weight or reduce on bloating but I swear I just can’t walk away and to all my health critics, NO lemon water doesn’t replace the craving so please save that!  I guess the moral of this story is soda is great tasting but bad for you, but you can’t go wrong with lemon water (that was a dumb ass moral but hey that’s all I got LMAO!

My glass is empty so that means I gotta go!  I have a box wine waiting to be tapped 

Party Foods…Lesgo! 

So I’ve slowed down tremendously nowadays but I used to love entertaining and as a courtesy/etiquette you have to set out something for your guests to munch and sip on.  Now at most gatherings unless otherwise stated expect finger foods.  Here’s a secret if you’re between 18-35 years old you will be inundated with wedding and baby showers invites.  You will either be hosting or a guest but you’ll be there in some capacity so you will get real familiar with a party menu.

If your like me you’re tired of the spaghetti, meatball, fried chicken (well maybe not the chicken lol) menu, tasty but dated, tired and BORING.  Now don’t get me wrong being a southern gal at heart I love a hearty meal, but with age I’ve classed it up some and pay great attention to detail, presentation, variety and taste.  So I started with the sherbet punch that I’ve always called the “church pernch”.   YES, it is liquid diabetes but if you’re up for it then go ‘head and get your entire life!!  Now if you’re trying to preserve your limbs then nothing beats a refreshing pitcher of flavored water! Cut up some fresh fruit, mint and cucumber, throw it in some fresh water and I promise you there won’t be a dry mouth in the building!

Get into some of these fresh ideas 




Now at the end of the day for my $25 Target gift card I’ve given to the guest of honor I want to be chewing on something so whatever you’re serving I’m going to plate it up and chew like nobody’s business, but it’s been nice seeing the new ways people are serving up party foods.  These are just a few ideas but there are so many creative people and there’s a menu for everyone.  So if your vegan, vegetarian, pescetarian etc. there’s new ways to serve great tasting party foods!

Theres a few goals when planning a small party or shower menu.  Right off the bat is cost effectiveness, feeding a crowd of any size can be costly so watch your coins, make smart choices and start buying a little at a time in advance.  Another is you want your guests to be satisfied.  No, hosts are not trying to serve you a full on Sunday dinner, but your host does not want to hear your stomach growling while opening gifts either. Chile you know they’ll talk about you on FB like a dirty dog to!  Making a little go a long way is a good thing so buy foods that can stretch, is satisfying and flavorful.  You also want as little clean up as possible.  Funny because I’m learning many guests appreciate foods that keeps their fingers and clothes clean.  So K.I.S.S. (Keep It Simple Sweets) 

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  • Who doesn’t love a good chicken salad 
  • A mean deviled egg with bacon toppings is always a crowd pleaser 
  • Need I say more? Mac & cheese wins the crowd everytime 
  • 7 layer dip in individual serving sizes…BRAVO 
  • I love veggies and with most people a side of ranch is a perfect match so why not serve it up for your guests already prepared 
  • Sliders & potato chips will get you an applause.  Two American favorites (the picture is shredded beef sliders)
  • CEVICHE!! You see that on the table with a bowl of tortilla chips and you know God is in the building.  THE END

Please share some of your party food ideas with CocktailsnChatter  

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Semi-Homemade Taco Salad Time


Now anyone who knows me knows Mexican food is my favorite and I could eat it all day!   Living in SoCal doesn’t help either.  Literally you can find an above average Mexican food spot in any city or neighborhood (at least the places I go).  Homemade is always THE best so if you have a homegirl, neighbor, coworker etc. then hit them up, but if not there’s always a stand, truck or hole in the wall that will give you life everlasting through a taco and some ceviche real quick like!  Now based off my blog site name y’all know I’ll slap ya mama behind a good margarita.  Anyone feel me?  Hands anyone🙋🏾

Well I was on Pintrest (as usual) and stumbled across “taco salads” which isn’t that big of a deal but it was the “make your own tortilla shell bowl” that really caught my eye  😁.  I love semi homemade so this recipe is semi because I’m not making the tortilla from scratch but homemade because I fried up the bowl myself *hashtag* #winning!  After reading the instructions I saw it was super simple so now I’m really all in.  I don’t measure and loosely follow directions so I’ll just leave the link  creatingthroughlife.com 

Yes, I used ground turkey meat, ONLY because I was fresh out of carne asada and I didn’t thaw out any chicken.  Plus I think a ground meat, though not standard Mexican meat, will work well for a taco salad or a 7 layer dip so there are exceptions to the authentic rule…at least in my house.  I used refried beans, black beans, corn (fresh off the cobb), shredded taco cheese and cojita cheese, fresh lettuce, tomatoes and scallions.  I love green salsa so I topped it off with that and a dollop of sour cream.  Please wipe the drool.

After You fry the shells please please please let them drain.  Just turn them upside down (I used a wired rack) because greasy shells are no bueno!  In fact because I am health conscious I will search for how to bake them the next go round.  Nonetheless fried, died, laid to the side they were so BOMB!  Every calorie I collected from that fried shell was worth it LOL!  Just fill them shells with your ingredients and layer them in any order you want.  No rules apply and you can make it your own.  I did forget to add fresh avocados oh well just know that’s another nice added ingredient.  I seasoned it with cumin, chili powder, s/p, garlic powder, onion powder.  I also added red & sweet onions to my turkey meat while cooking.  Now to simplify it…you can just add a taco packet (I love Lawrys brand) and you can add a little verde sauce to the meat as well while cooking.  I also season my beans while heating up.

It’s a heavy and depending on what you pile on it can be a fattening meal so be careful.  I’ve learned portion control though I don’t always follow that rule but I know when to apply it and this was that time.  I just didn’t have time to take a 4hr nap mid day.

What’s your favorite Mexican dish?  Do you like this this recipe?   Let me know and LIKE – COMMENT-SUBSCRIBE