I’m so excited to be sharing this with you today! I’ve been keeping it under my hat for weeks now!
The time has finally come for me to unveil what I’ve been busily working on all this time:
I HAVE A NEW BLOG!!!
For many, many months I toyed around with idea of narrowing my focus here on YinMom YangMom to strictly baking recipes, but I just couldn’t pull the trigger on it. It seemed to go against the concept of our blog, which is meant to be about all aspects of motherhood. With the help of a a few good friends, I finally saw the light! Who’s to say a girl can’t have it all???
So now I’m authoring two blogs (!). All of my non-baking musings will continue to appear here on YinMom YangMom, while my most fabulousest desserts will have a new home….
So, without any further ado, I’m proud to announce the birth of my new baby:
It would mean so, so, so much to me if you’d click on over and have a peek at what I’ve created, with the help of my good friend Lisa of Sweet2Eat Baking. There is a brand new post there for you to drool over, along with some old favorites from YinMom YangMom.
I hope you enjoy reading it as much as I have enjoyed putting it together! Please give it a warm welcome with all the comments, Facebook Likes, Twitter Follows, and Subscriptions as you can muster!
Happy Summer, everybody! Summer weather has finally caught up to us here at the YinMom YangMom Allie household, and I couldn’t be happier! I just got back from Walmart where I purchased excessive amounts of Summer-related products, including, but not limited to:
Slip N Slide
Insulated Water Bottles
My kids are going to be so happy when they get home from school in an hour or so!!!
But I still do have that hour to fill, and of course my favorite way to do that is by cooking up a treat.
I haven’t been able to get this granita idea out of my brain since I first spotted it on Happy Valley Chow. (Eric is a super talented guy with tons of fabulous food ideas to share, so if you don’t already know him, definitely go get lost in his blog when you get some down time!)
A granita is sort of like water ice or maybe like coarser-textured sorbet. It’s also a bit like shave ice or a snow cone, except, instead of squirting a flavored syrup over ice, you actually freeze the juice/liquid, every so often breaking up the ice crystals with a fork.
I have always shied away from making granita because I thought it sounded like a pain, having to keep at it with the fork every half hour or so. But this idea makes it so much simpler! All you need is a food processor with a cheese-grating blade.
I chose to make a sweet tea granita; it just puts me in mind of Summer! I love drinking sweet tea but for some reason I only think to make it in the summer. Sometimes I use green tea, sometimes black, sometimes I add berries, sometimes citrus, sometimes a handful of mint from my herb garden. I prefer it a little less sweet than they drink it in the South, so if you have a real sweet tooth, by all means add more sugar/honey/agave. Make it your own, yo!
In a medium pot, bring the water and sugar to a bare simmer over high heat. Stir to dissolve the sugar completely. Remove from heat, add the tea bags and lemon slices, and steep for about 15 minutes. Pour the tea into an 8×8″ glass baking dish, and cool completely.
Freeze overnight, or until solid.
Place a hot towel under and around the baking dish, to soften the ice around the edges. Turn the ice out onto a cutting board, and cut into chunks. Process the chunks in a food processor, with the grating blade.
Scoop the granita into serving dishes and serve immediately.
This is such a refreshing treat and so easy to prepare! I can’t wait to enjoy some on the patio with Mr. Allie later tonight while we watch the kiddos tire themselves out with all their new backyard toys!
I can’t believe it’s Memorial Day weekend already!
a) because this school year just went by so incredibly fast, and
b) because it’s gloomy, cold, and raw out there today! It feels more like early March than like the unofficial kickoff of summer.
Well, hopefully it’s nicer wherever you are, and if not, maybe this riff on potato salad, that ultimate summer barbecue staple side dish, will put you in a sunny mood.
Making your own potato salad is not hard. Once the potatoes are boiled, it’s just a matter of throwing in your ingredients! My mom’s traditional potato salad, which I adore, is made with vinegar, mayo, onion, celery, hard-boiled egg, and spices. But for this recipe, I decided to mix up the flavors a bit, and trim some of the fat!
I’ve used plain Chobani 2% Greek yogurt, in place of the mayo. It’s so super creamy and rich tasting, you’d swear it was sour cream! And when I think of sour cream and potatoes, my mind goes right to that favorite guilty pleasure: Loaded Baked Potatoes. With the addition of some crumbled bacon, broccoli, shredded cheddar, and scallions, you get all that delicious flavor with a whole lot less fat, and more protien to boot!
1 bunch (about 8) scallions, roughly chopped, green part only
1 cup shredded low-fat cheddar cheese
1 cup low-fat Greek-style yogurt
additional salt & pepper (optional) to taste
Cover the potatoes in cold, salted water, and bring to a boil. Boil until fork-tender, about 20-25 minutes.
Drain the potatoes and chop them coarsely. Place the warm potatoes in a large bowl and sprinkle with vinegar, salt, and pepper. Toss to coat.
Slice the bacon and place it in a cold pan. Cook over a medium low heat until the fat has rendered and it’s brown and crisp. Remove from the pan with a slotted spoon, and drain on paper towels.
Add the bacon, broccoli, scallions, cheese, and yogurt to the potatoes and toss to coat.
Season with additional salt and pepper, if needed.
Are you ready for summer? Personally, I am super-psyched for warm sunny days, swimming, walking the boards, and long, lazy barbecues on the patio! This dish will definitely be on the menu, once the sun comes out from hiding!
Hi, friends! It’s been a while since I’ve posted…. sorry about that! Mr. Allie and I took the kiddos to Disney for a week! It was so much fun and so exhausting! Lol. We had four days just outside of Orlando (one day per park: Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Hollywood Studios, and Animal Kingdom), and then two days were dedicated to travel. It was a fabulous trip and we did it on a tight budget. I’m thinking about maybe devoting a post to it if you think that’d be interesting??? We know lots of people who do Disney pretty frequently, and they plan everything to the nth degree, but the idea of that just totally freaked us out! This was only my second time there since I was a kid, and I just had no idea where to begin. Mr. Allie and I kept remarking to each other that it felt like such a rite of passage for us to be there with our children. I think we may have been more excited about it than the kids were! After having been there, and experienced what it was all about, we now know how we’d maybe do things differently, that is, plan it a little more. Not that we had a bad time or anything! It was truly a blast and the only possible improvement would have been to do less backtracking around/walking and riding more rides!
I had every intention of coming home and jumping right back on the blog train, but once we settled back in and unpacked/washed everything, I decided to take a little time just to recharge my batteries. I think I really needed it! Just before we left I was feeling like I was spinning my wheels, but over the last week I’ve gained a lot of clarity and a lot of inspiration.
One of the main sources of inspiration came from the folks at Chobani. Shortly after we arrived home, we received a shipment that contained mass quantities of Chobani Greek Style Yogurt! I’ve loved Chobani for a while now, and have used in it lots of recipes. But now that my fridge is bursting with the stuff, I knew I needed to come up with some more great ways to use it.
I make oven fries all the time, and I especially love to do them with sweet potatoes! They are super-nutritious (read more about that here) but I particularly love them for their flavor. I always prefer to pair them with more savory flavors, to contrast with their natural sweetness.
If you toss the sweet potato fries with some heart-healthy extra-virgin olive oil, sprinkle them with sea salt, and roast them on a lined baking sheet, they come out so crispy-caramelized and roasty!
They are perfect for dunking in this flavorful horseradish dijon dipping sauce! I also add a little garlic powder and agave nectar, to fat-free Greek-style yogurt, along with a big bunch of fresh chives.
I just love how that sharp flavor plays against the caramelly sweet potato!
If everything goes according to plan, then by the time you are reading this post, I’ll be in sunny Florida, living vicariously through my kids as they take in all the magic of Disney!
In preparation for this family vacation, my kitchen and I worked some serious overtime! I wanted to be sure to bring you this recipe today, because Mother’s Day is one of my favorite holidays (naturally ), and y’all know how much I love to give a home-baked gift.
This one’s gonna be short and sweet, 1) because I have made macarons so many times before on this blog (scroll down and you’ll see), and 2) because I’m trying to pack up a family of four for a week in Florida, people!
The idea is simple: when I think of Mothers Day, I think of mimosas! I’m not sure how it came to be, but in my family, it’s tradition to head out for brunch. I don’t make a habit of imbibing before lunch on any other day of the year, but for some reason on Mothers Day I feel like I have a free pass to get looped on o.j. and champagne….!
I am completely ridiculously inconsistent. I change my mind at the drop of a hat. My husband frequently says, “you sure don’t mind changing your mind” .
All throughout my life, I was CERTAIN that when the time came for me to get older, and start getting wrinkles and flab, I would accept it. I would grow old gracefully. (I am not afraid, however of a little preventative maintenance, and also not opposed to surgery if I can afford it and do it in moderation.) So I’ve never really been overly afraid of looking older.
Well, that is until about 2 months ago. I turned 34, and it’s like something switched inside of me, and I found myself terrified at the prospect of aging.
Suddenly I’m frowning at my frown lines, and worrying about the way my jaw is starting to look a little different, more like my grandmom’s, who is BEAUTIFUL let me just say, but… grandmom’s…
So the dabbling began. I did research. I am into natural stuff. I hate gross artificial fragrances. I have skin that starts out dry and gets oily by the end of day. Sometimes it’s a little flaky and oily at the same time, which is the WORST. I wear makeup, and I want to be able to wash ALL of it off without hurting my skin.
I found a few really lovely things that I plan to share (and offer for a giveaway, below!), starting with a cleanser. I can honestly say this cleanser has solved a lot of problems for me. It’s made by Sibu Beauty, and it makes me happy.
Being the natural-product-making mad scientist that I am, I really like the fact this one is natural. I get requests to make facial cleansers, and I’d like to someday, but do you know much work and money goes into new product development? OMG Let me tell you, it’s a lot. I can’t just wave my magic wand and POOF, cleanser (YET, we’re doing some R&D on a magic wand, which will soon be available on Etsy… just kidding).
But I digress. This stuff has a few ingredients that I had to Google, but from what I found the preservatives and agents pretty much come from corn, coconut, fruit sugars and/or fennel, and are considered generally safe, bonus!
I also really like that it has Sea Buckthorn Berry in it, because that’s actually one of my favorite skincare ingredients. This berry contains a large concentration of Omega 7′s, which are incredibly beneficial for skin. You can read about Omega 7′s on the Sibu website, here: http://www.sibubeauty.com/omega_7.php
Lastly, and importantly, it works well. It has little beads of something nice that give a very gentle exfoliation, it smells nice, it doesn’t quite foam, but doesn’t quite not foam. It feels good, and my skin looks clean, shiny and smooth, and not irritated in any way. It looks healthy, like you just had a good run. I like it.
It’s helped me to change my mind again, I don’t mind getting older. Yes I do. No I don’t…
SO, now for the important part. You can win one of your very own. There are multiple ways to enter, which you will do with this handy-dandy little widget from Rafflecopter, below. You MUST either like Sibu on Facebook, or follow them on Twitter. The tweeting option gives you a bonus chance to win. Good luck!
Even if we weren’t coming up Cinco de Mayo, I think I’d still want to be eating something Mexican-y this week. Something about this time of year, with the warmer temperatures beckoning al fresco dining, I just can’t help but crave the intensity of those kinds of flavors.
This is not the kind of Shrimp Cocktail that typically comes to my mind. And it’s not really the kind of Mexican food that comes to my mind, either!
About ten years ago I enjoyed the trip of a lifetime, to Cancun in January (!). It was glorious! We stayed in a beautiful resort, where a sliding glass door led us from our suite right onto the white, sandy beach. There were wild peacocks roaming the gardens. And in the afternoons, we’d wander over to the pool deck and order lunch while basking in the warm sunshine. This dish quickly became my favorite, and once I had discovered it, I had to have it every last day we spent on that amazing tropical island.
I was so thrilled when, years later, I came across the recipe in my local newspaper!
It comes together in a heartbeat and it can totally be made ahead. In fact, it gets even better as it sits.
It’s meant to be an appetizer but once I have it in front of me, I lose all self control and make a meal out of it. Mr. Allie and I often enjoy it as a light supper.
Before we get to the party, I’d like to just take a minute to thank everyone for hopping on over during the month of April, to party with me! I’m so very happy to have had the opportunity to make some new bloggy friends! I really enjoy looking at all of your gorgeous posts every week (and drooling, lol). Thank you all for the follows and likes! I will continue to visit you on your blogs and I hope you’ll do the same.
And big thank yous also go out to Lisa for allowing me to co-host. It’s truly been a pleasure!
Welcome to Sugar & Slice Sunday Link Party
The only place where you can party on a Sunday and feel fresh on a Monday!
Do you guys remember a whiiiiiiiiiiile back when I posted a two-fer recipe for roast chicken? Both of those recipes are phenomenal, btw, and if you are looking for a great way to gather friends and/or family around the supper table, roast chicken is IT!
A-henny-who, at this time of year I am always in the market for something light, cool, and refreshing, and kinda healthy, for lunch or for a light dinner. With my oldest now in tee-ball, it’s nice to have something we can pack up and eat at the game, or just quickly stuff in our faces after we get home.
So, I thought it might be nice to share a kind of offshoot recipe, inspired by my “Faraway Place” chicken, in cold salad form!
If you’ve ever enjoyed curried chicken salad, then you’d probably like this one too. It’s similar in that it has that earthy spice flavor, but in this preparation it’s even more pronounced. Rather than using a pre-made spice blend (such as curry powder), this dressing relies on a mixture of individual dried spices and fresh herbs. And, it’s lower in fat and calories, with mayonnaise being replaced by low fat, high protien Greek-style yogurt.
That being said, again I must now give a disclaimer: I am not Indian. I am no expert on Indian cooking. I did not grow up eating Indian food. Even now, as an adult, I do not eat much Indian food (there just aren’t a whole lot of Indian restaurants in my neck of the woods;)). I first discovered what I’ve titled “Faraway Place” chicken in a local publication a few years back. Unfortunately, the author was not cited, so I am unable to credit him or her. It was not titled “Tandoori Chicken.” I did not know what it was, or where in the world it was from, until I googled the ingredients! So, as you can see, I make no claims that this recipe is authentic in any way. I just know it’s really tasty, and different, and the flavors are super exciting!
Start with some cooked chicken. You could use a rotisserie chicken from the supermarket, or just some leftover cooked chicken, or, I just poached up a couple of boneless, skinless chicken breasts in simmering, salted water, for about 30 minutes, or until no longer pink inside. You can dice the chicken, or try this fabulous method, which works perfectly and I am totally in love with.
In a small bowl, combine the yogurt, agave, lemon juice & zest, ginger, and spices.
Add in the chicken, almonds, raisins, and parsley, and toss to coat.
Serve in lettuce cups, whole wheat wraps, or on a croissant.
There are any number of ways this can be served: on a croissant, in a lettuce wrap, in a whole wheat tortilla wrap, or straight outta the ol’ mason jar if you are on the go.
Garlicky yogurt, spiked with bright citrus, warm paprika and ginger, and earthy cumin, cinnamon, and turmeric, contrasted with crunchy almonds and sweet raisins, with a fresh hit of verdant parsley! No matter how you slice it, this chicken salad is like no other! So light and healthy, and full of such interesting and complex flavor!