Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Giveaway Winner!

I consulted the random number generator at (I wish I owned that site) and the winner is.....

Stacie! Who wrote on my fb post because the comments section wasn't letting her...  But I added her in chronological order.

Stacie said, "I will try the mini quiches. I will bake the little crusts, make some with potato and sausage to eat and freeze some of the crusts for a "just got home and need something quickly" meal."

That's also a great tip.  Thanks Stacie! Send me an email at with your address and I'll have your package sent out asap!  I'm sure I have your address around here somewhere from Christmas cards... But I've always wanted to say that.  haha.  

Thanks for playing! I am hopeful that myblogspark will send me more give-away items in the near future.  And if you have a blog, check them out.  I get a few emails a week from them and I've filled out a few surveys, but all worth it for a cool giveaway like this one.  

Monday, April 23, 2012

Mini Quiche and a Giveaway!

****************GIVEAWAY ALERT!!!********************** 
What? Alisa's having a giveaway? Yup. Buckle up folks. It's my first giveaway, so I don't know how these things work. 
What's that? You just give things away to people? Oh, yeah, I can do that.  
So I got this sweet package of goodies from Land O'Lakes and MyBlogSpark, and they suggested I head over to for some recipe ideas.  I usually find my recipes on Pinterest or the Food Network website because they have so many ideas.  But has some really great easy, fast, fresh recipes.  I'll definitely go back next time I'm browsing for an idea.  I even found a buttercream frosting recipe I might be trying soon.  Nom.

This time I wanted to make a recipe using the Land O'Lakes eggs that I make a lot, and tweak it a little with some tips I found on this recipe:

I would usually use my own pie crust that I grew up with, but I was STARTVING.  So I took their advice and used a store-bought pie crust and it was EASY.  So easy. I used a cup to cut the circles out. They were the perfect size for the mini muffin tin that they sent me.

I tossed those crusts in the oven at 375 to bake while I mixed up the innards.

2 eggs and 1/2 cup of plain yogurt (instead of the milk they suggest), seasoned with salt and pepper. 

When the pie crusts came out I filled them with tiny broccoli chunks and shredded cheese (my favorite quiche filling EVER).
Then I filled the cups with my egg mixture and popped them in the oven!
All in all they probably took me 25-30 minutes start to finish.  And I fried up some bacon while I waited for them to cook.  

Love the store-bought crust idea.  If you've never tried it, I suggest giving it a shot.  It has a unique taste that I fell in love with camping with my dad.  He would make cherry pies in the dutch oven with those pie crusts and some canned cherries.  Something about the memories made those simple pies my absolute favorite.  The dutch oven flavor doesn't hurt either... mmmm.

 So here's the deal- Leave a comment below before midnight on Tuesday night telling me what recipe from you would like to try. I'll use a random number generator (exciting!) and pick one of the comments.  If there's only one comment, you win.

What do I win? Oh yeah... You win the same thing they sent me! This egg-celent package of goodies.   

 “Disclosure:  The gift pack, coupons, information, and additional gift pack have been provided by Land O’Lakes through MyBlogSpark.”

On another note, my friend Amber had her baby! awwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww. 

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Macarons. Go ahead, Trebek it, I'll wait.

I heard that making a french macaron was very difficult... So I didn't do it.  

Years after they were "all the rage" I decided to give them a try, and I'll tell you why.  I like to try and make food when I have ZERO ingredients for the food I want to make.  Making cookies is always something I want to do when I have NO FLOUR.  

So I was sifting (baking humor) through my ingredients to see what sort of flour-less cookies I could make when I stumbled upon a bag of almonds.  Now, I'm not going to lie... I could have made my life WAY easier by buying almond meal and superfine sugar, but what's the fun in that? So I literally ground the almonds down to flour in my food processor and sifted them 3 times, just to make sure. Then I gave my sugar a spin in the processor to make it "supa fine" like me.  

The finished result was an incredibly fragile shell with NO LEGS.  Legs on a 'ron is the non-smooth area at the base of the cookie.  Where it rises. You want legs...

Instead, mine rose in cracks all over the place, but once it's in your mouth, you can't taste the difference.  
Forgive my horrible photography... I try to get creative and it gets bad.

I put some plain ol' frosting in the middle.  Nothing special.  Packed them up for my Aunt Linda's birthday.  

*Word to the wise:  write "fragile" on the box... she reached her hand right in there and crushed the poor macarons.  

French Macarons 
Recipe by THE Martha Stewart
  • Yield Makes 35 macarons


  • For the Macarons

    • 1 cup confectioners' sugar
    • 3/4 cup almond flour
    • 2 large egg whites, room temperature
    • Pinch of cream of tartar
    • 1/4 cup superfine sugar


  1. Pulse confectioners' sugar and almond flour in a food processor until combined. Sift mixture 2 times.
  2. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Whisk whites with a mixer on medium speed until foamy. Add cream of tartar, and whisk until soft peaks form. Reduce speed to low, then add superfine sugar. Increase speed to high, and whisk until stiff peaks form, about 8 minutes. Sift flour mixture over whites, and fold until mixture is smooth and shiny.
  3. Transfer batter to a pastry bag fitted with a 1/2-inch plain round tip, and pipe 3/4-inch rounds 1 inch apart on parchment-lined baking sheets, dragging pastry tip to the side of rounds rather than forming peaks. Tap bottom of each sheet on work surface to release trapped air. Let stand at room temperature for 15 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 325 degrees. Bake 1 sheet at a time, rotating halfway through, until macarons are crisp and firm, about 10 minutes. After each batch, increase oven temperature to 375 degrees, heat for 5 minutes, then reduce to 325 degrees.
  4. Let macarons cool on sheets for 2 to 3 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack. (If macarons stick, spray water underneath parchment on hot sheet. The steam will help release macarons.)
  5. Sandwich 2 same-size macarons with 1 teaspoon filling. Serve immediately, or stack between layers of parchment, wrap in plastic, and freeze for up to 3 months.

Cook's Note

Piping the perfect macaroon takes a little practice. Treat it as you would a rosette, bringing the pastry tip to the side of the circle, rather than forming a peak, to finish.

Monday, April 2, 2012


Today is my boyfriend's birthday! So I took him on an overnight trip yesterday to Omaha.  I was shocked to hear that it was only 2 hours away.  (I know, geography was never my strong suit) 
Literally the only picture we have together...

We were pretty hungry, so we searched for a Steak and Shake... Strangely enough, the only one in Omaha was permanently closed.  So, on a whim, Arnold looked to see if there was a Five Guys in Omaha. AND THERE WAS!  That's how excited he was... I'd never been there, so I was just hungry-surprised.  

So lunch was a delicious burger with a zillion toppings and peanut oil-fried french fries...  I don't usually like fries, but there was something about those crunchy little guys that drew me away from my juicy burger.  

After lunch, we headed to the ZOO!  It was one of the most exciting moments of my life... I love the Zoo.  
We saw some giraffes and their week old babies! 

Arnold is going to be mad I said this, but he thought they were fake... He kept thinking everything was fake! 

The rhino was a big hit.  He was HUGE, and he got up from his nap for a photo opp.  
 We went to a show at the IMAX theater at the zoo, mostly to cool off because it was around 90 degrees! It was a scorcher.  And that's no April Fool's joke. 

After the zoo we checked into our hotel because we were exhausted and wanted to rest and shower before dinner. 

Dinner was at an Italian restaurant in the Old Market district called Vivace.  My friend from work had recommended it.  Glad she did. It was delicious! The bread they served was out-of-control.  

I loved the Old Market area.  There were interesting buildings and cool little shops.  We went in a few, but most of them were closed because it was Sunday night. 
 This wall might be the best photo I've ever taken... I'm a horrible photographer. 
 After doing some research, I think Omaha might be a future destination for me.  There is a sweet pedestrian bridge that I'm dying to ride, and the bartender at a bar we stopped in said there are tons of bike trails leading away from it on the Iowa side.  (Because that's how we roll... Get it?)
Photo from