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  1. Wednesday, February 8

    THANK YOU! And KitchenAid Blender Giveaway Winner

    Before I get to the KitchenAid hand blender giveaway winner, I need to take a moment to say THANK YOU! Thank you all for your blog birthday wishes and the unbelievably nice things you said in all your comments on the birthday post. I read each and every comment and was smiling ear-to-ear for days. So, thank you thank you thank you!

    On to the winner…

    Rachel, who said, “Happy blog bday!”

    Thanks, Rachel! I hope you enjoy the beautiful blender!

    Thanks again for all of your sweet comments. And big thanks to KitchenAid for such a fun giveaway!


  2. Sunday, February 5

    Week 263 Menu

    I’m in Utah this weekend surprising my grandmother for her birthday (she was super surprised!). The mountains are still majestic. The fry sauce is still darn good. And my sister-in-law made me pancakes for breakfast this morning. Life is GOOD. 😉

    Menu time! I have a few repeats from last week…it was kind of a rough week trying to get work done and get ready for my trip, so I didn’t get to the store and dinners did not go as planned. Those weeks happen, I suppose! Gotta roll with the punches…

    MONDAY:
    – Grandma’s Birthday!
    – Nate will be in charge at home with the girls

    TUESDAY:
    – Eat out (this is the day I get back, so moving eat out night up)

    WEDNESDAY:
    – Chicken & Broccoli Penne
    – Salad and bread

    THURSDAY:
    Chili

    FRIDAY:
    Stuffed Peppers
    – Salad

    SATURDAY:
    Chicken Soup with Rice

    SUNDAY:
    – Leftovers

    Time to share your menus for the week!

    And…GO PATRIOTS!!!!!!!


  3. Saturday, February 4

    Silk Milk Challenge Wasn’t a Challenge At All

    The week is almost over and I am happy to report that the Silk milk challenge was a success! I was able to use Pure Almond Vanilla and Soy Vanilla Light in place of regular milk with no problem. In fact, the challenge has opened up the world of “alternative milk” possibilities to me and I am looking forward to trying other flavors, especially more nut milks and rice milk!

    I knew during the challenge I needed to try baking something that I normally use milk in.  I make waffles and pancakes all the time, so I definitely wanted to see how one of those recipes would work subbing out the milk. I decided to try the Pure Almond Vanilla in waffles.

    The waffles were delish! My friend Wendy sampled them with me and we both agreed they were great. I used the Pure Almond Vanilla because I thought the almond would make for a nice flavor in the waffles. The waffles cooked a little differently than normal and never got very brown, which surprised me. But the texture was great and Wendy and I both liked the subtle, not overpowering almond flavor of the waffles. I will definitely make them this way again…and of course I’ll share the recipe with you below!

    While I’m sure I’ll use cow’s milk again, especially when Owen is less sensitive to it, I am really happy to have discovered some alternatives. I really liked the Soy Vanilla Light and Pure Almond Vanilla that I used this week. Obviously these two milks are both sweetened and have a vanilla flavor. They worked well with my current needs, but I can see that they may not work with everything. As I mentioned before, after having tried these milks and really enjoying them, I’m excited to try other flavors and varieties based on different recipes and uses. And all of your suggestions over the week have been super helpful – thank you! I definitely count the week as a success and look forward to further expanding my milk horizons…

    Silk Milk Challenge Wasn’t a Challenge At All
     
    Fluffy Almond Milk Waffles!
    Author:
    Recipe type: Breakfast
    Cuisine: American
    Ingredients
    • 2 cups all-purpose flour
    • ½ teaspoon salt
    • 2 teaspoons baking powder
    • 2 cups Silk Pure Almond Vanilla milk
    • 2 eggs
    • 4 Tablespoons butter, melted
    Instructions
    1. Whisk together the flour, salt and baking powder. In a separate bowl, whisk together the eggs, butter and Pure Almond Vanilla milk. Add the wet ingredients to the dry and mix. Cook as you normally would in a waffle iron. Enjoy with lots of butter and syrup!

    This post is sponsored by Silk through Martha’s Circle. All opinions are my own.

     


  4. Thursday, February 2

    Island Pork with Sticky Coconut Rice

    My friend Jessica had us over for dinner a few weeks ago and served Island Pork with Sticky Coconut Rice. People. PEOPLE. You are going to love me (well, Jessica) forever for introducing this recipe to you. I am head over heels for this dish.

    The rub for the pork is savory and the glaze is sweet and the flavors all complement each other in such a lovely way…and there is just enough heat. Enough that I can taste the kick, but not so much my kids wouldn’t eat it. Quite the opposite, they loved it, too. The technique yields a perfectly cooked pork tenderloin – tender and juicy. And the sticky coconut rice? Again, it just pairs so nicely with the pork…and, seriously, I could eat it for dessert. Yum yum yum. Last selling point…the recipe is quite simple to prepare and doesn’t require any super fancy ingredients. I personally just had to pick up some pork and coconut milk at the store – everything else was already in the cupboard!

    Without further ado, the recipe!

    Island Pork
     
    Someone named Mary Fetzer gave Jessica this recipe. The pork preparation originally comes from an Epicurious salad recipe. You could bop over to their website to check out the salad, but I really loved the pork served with the rice.
    Author:
    Recipe type: Main Dish, Pork
    Ingredients
    • For the pork:
    • 2 pork tenderloins, 2¼ – 2½ pounds total (they generally come in one package together)
    • 2 tablespoons olive oil
    • Rub:
    • 2 teaspoons salt
    • ½ teaspoon black pepper
    • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
    • 1 teaspoon chili powder
    • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
    • Glaze:
    • 1 cup brown sugar
    • 2 tablespoons finely chopped garlic
    • 1 tablespoon Tabasco
    Instructions
    1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
    2. Mix “Rub” ingredients, then coat pork with spice rub.
    3. Heat olive oil in an ovenproof 12-inch heavy skillet over moderately high heat until just beginning to smoke, then brown pork, turning, about 4 minutes total. Leave pork in skillet.
    4. Mix glaze ingredients. Pat onto each tenderloin and roast in the center of oven until instant read thermometer inserted diagonally into center of each tenderloin reads 140°F, about 20 minutes. Remove from oven and let pork rest 10 minutes in skillet. Slice into ½″ – 1″ slices and serve over sticky coconut rice, pouring some of the remaining glaze over the pork and rice.

     
    Sticky Coconut Rice
     
    Author:
    Recipe type: Side Dish, Rice
    Serves: 6
    Ingredients
    • 1½ cup jasmine rice
    • 1 15-oz can regular or light coconut milk
    • ⅓ – ½ cup sugar (I actually now do more like ¼ cup sugar and it’s still plenty sweet. add between ¼ – ½ cup to your own taste!)
    • 1 cup milk
    Instructions
    1. If rice is not pre-rinsed (the bag will tell you if it is), rinse with cold water until water runs clear. Put rice in a medium sauce pan and combine with coconut milk, milk and sugar. Bring to a boil, stirring regularly, then reduce heat to low and cover pot. Simmer for about 25 minutes (could take up to 45 minutes depending on the rice). Stir regularly.
    2. Rice and pork may be served with fresh, cubed mango, but this is optional (although I am certain it is delicious!).

     


  5. Wednesday, February 1

    Silk Milk Challenge is on its way!

    I’m a few days into the Silk milk challenge and so far so good!

    At the start of the week I held a milk tasting with my 4-year-old Anna. She is the primary milk drinker in our family. She’s actually kind of obsessed with the stuff. I figured if anyone should test these new milks out with me it should be her!

    I poured us each a glass of the Pure Almond Vanilla and the Soy Vanilla Light milks and we dove right in.

    • Jane’s analysis: Both milks are yummy! I don’t know what I was expecting. Strange Textures? Weird aftertaste? Well, we had none of that. The flavors of both milks were subtle and the sweetness was just right. Thumbs up!
    • Anna’s analysis: “Mmm…chocolate milk.” Yes, the milk is actually vanilla and not chocolate, but that reaction means it’s a definite thumbs up from Anna!

    Here are a few other ways I’ve been using the milk:

    • I can finally eat my bowl of granola and flakes each morning! I’ve really missed my granola, which isn’t too sweet to begin with, so the sweetness of the Soy Vanilla Light is a perfect combo with the cereal. There are definitely some cereals that would not go well with this milk, but for my granola it works great!
    • Have you ever had almond hot chocolate? Yeah, me neither. Until now. I heated up the Pure Almond Vanilla milk, added some of my best shaved chocolate and it was delicious. The texture was good and I liked the subtle almond flavor paired with the chocolate.

    Like I said, so far so good!  The new milks are serving me well!

    This post is sponsored by Silk through Martha’s Circle. All opinions are my own.