Friday, July 29, 2011

Friday Foodday!

Hey lovebugs!
Happy Friday!  I'm especially excited today because I leave on my family vacation on Sunday for a week!  But don't worry, TCB will still be here for you everyday next week with some fabulous guest bloggers!  Until then, enjoy these great recipes!

Siracha Chicken Strips
c/o Budget Bytes

 2 boneless chicken breasts
1/3 cup  Siracha hot sauce
1 Tbsp rice vinegar
1 inch peeled and grated ginger
1 clove garlic
1 large egg
1 cup flour
1 ½ cups panko bread crumbs
a pinch of salt and pepper


STEP 1: In a resealable container combine the Sriracha, rice vinegar, minced garlic and grated ginger. Slice the chicken breasts diagonally into 6 strips each and mix to coat in the Sriracha marinade. Cover the container with the marinade and chicken and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.

STEP 2: Preheat your oven to 400 degrees. Set up your dredging station by getting three bowls. Fill the first with the all-purpose flour, in the second whisk the egg and 1 Tbsp of water and in the third bowl place the panko bread crumbs. Also get a clean plate or dish ready to hold the breaded chicken strips.

STEP 3: Taking one chicken strip from the marinade at a time, wipe off the excess Sriracha then dip to coat in the flour, then the egg and lastly the panko crumbs. Make sure all surfaces of the chicken strip get covered with each. Gently place the breaded strip on the clean plate and move on to the next one. This is messy and your hands will get coated so make sure you won't get interrupted before you begin.

STEP 4: Once all of the strips are breaded, place them on a baking sheet lined with foil and bake for 20 minutes at 400 degrees. After 20 minutes, turn the oven on to broil and broil for about 5 minutes on each side. Watch the strips during the broiling process. When they get golden brown, pull them out, flip them and wait for the second side to get golden (about 5 minutes each side). Let the strips cool slightly before serving!

Chicken Stuffed with Spinach and Ricotta

Olive oil
1 bag of fresh spinach
1 garlic clove, minced and 2 garlic whole and peeeled
4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
1 cup ricotta
1/4 cup grated cheese
1 egg, beaten with 1 tablespoon water
1 cup seasoned breadcrumbs


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Heat 1 tablespoon of oil over medium heat. Add in garlic and spinach. Season with salt and pepper. Stir around the spinach until it is coated. Cover the pan and allow the spinach to cook turning it every so often. Once spinach has wilted remove from pan and set aside.
In a medium size bowl mix together the ricotta and grated cheese. Season with salt and pepper.
Cut a slit in the chicken breasts to create a pocket. Don’t go all the way through the chicken. Stuff the ricotta mixture inside the slit. Then stuff it with the spinach. You can mix the spinach in with the ricotta too but I wanted a separate layer of spinach. Season the chicken on both sides with salt and pepper. Repeat with the remaining chicken.
Place the egg mixture into a shallow dish. In a second shallow dish place the breadcrumbs. Dredge the chicken in the egg mixture and coat on all sides. Dip the chicken with the egg on it into the breadcrumbs and coat on all sides. Close the pocket up with some toothpicks by placing them in at an angle. Repeat for each piece of chicken.
In a large sautée or fry pan that is oven proof add in the garlic and about 1/4 cup of oil. Turn the heat to medium. When the oil is hot add in the chicken. Brown on both sides. If needed add more oil to the pan. Once browned place the pan in the oven and cook 15-20 minutes or until the chicken is cooked through and reaches an internal temperature of 165 degrees F.

Southwestern Black Bean Salad
c/o Skinny Taste
1 15.5 oz can black beans, rinsed and drained
9 oz frozen corn, thawed
1 tomato, chopped
1 small hass avocado, diced
1/4 cup red onion, chopped
1 scallion, chopped
1 lime, juice of
3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 tbsp cilantro
salt and fresh pepper

Combine beans, corn, tomato, onion, scallion, cilantro, salt and pepper. Mix with lime juice and olive oil. Marinate in the refrigerator 30 minutes. Add avocado before serving. 

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Shall we Crochet?

I haven't fully gotten on board with the all over crochet look, but I am liking smaller details of it found on pieces.  The trend is nice for summer because the crochet pattern and texture is very breathable.  What do you think of some of these?

You certainly can't beat the price.  I would pair this with some green shorts.

Forever 21, Chiffon and Crochet Tank, $23
Now this is classy.  I like the modified v-neck and the uneven hemline.

I really like the gathered skirt on this dress, makes it a bit dressier.

French Connection, Daisy Doile Mini Skirt, $90
Talk about the perfect warm weather navy skirt.  This is divine.  I love the waistband detail as well.

How are you wearing the crochet trend? I must confess, I don't own any pieces yet but I really like the idea of them for summer.

Be fabulous today!

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Ruffled Up!

You all know I have a sweet spot for all things ruffle, and today I found a more subtle way to incorporate it into your wardrobe.  A ruffle sleeve is a more discreet way to add some detail without feeling super-girly.

This top is perfect for summer.  I really like the variation of the stripe direction on the sleeve.

You know, I'm happy the Hills is over because that LC can really dress a woman.  I love this top! And it comes in four other colors.

A fun take on the crochet knit trend.  The tiered ruffle makes a statement.

Neiman Marcus, Ali Ro Flutter Sleeve Dress, $94
I want to wear this now with metallic heeled sandals and then in the fall for an evening out with black tights.

A ruffle sleeve is a little less in your face than an all over ruffle, but I think it adds a nice touch of femininity to any outfit.

Be fabulous today!

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Navy and Silver

Hey lovebugs!
Today I wanted to talk about a color combination that I think is perfect for this heat wave: navy and silver.  This color combo is crisp and makes a statement and in this heat, and sometimes you need a little extra oomph to make that happen in this weather!

Nordstrom, Pleione Tie Neck Smock, $53
Hello elegance.  I love the sleeves on this tunic, I would pair it with earrings like these...

These are so gorgeous.  Not too chunky and just the right about of bling.

I really like the pewter/silver color of this dress, I would pair it with these shoes...

These are so simple and no nonsense.  I would love these for weekends.

Modcloth, Midnight sun dress, $43
You really can't find this kind of beauty for under $50.  This is perfect for wedding season.  I'd pair it with these shoes...

I love the idea of a sweet dress with a side of 'hell yeah she's working those heels!'

So what do you think of this color combination? I think it's so fresh and clean even for being a darker tone.  

Be fabulous today!

Monday, July 25, 2011

Nail Polish Inspired Post!

Hi there lovebugs. Happy Monday to you.  I hope you had a great weekend, and I hope you stayed cool!

Today I thought we would do a nail polish inspired post because they're so much fun.  Today's color is from the OPI Pirates of the Carribbean line: Mermaid Tears.

Anthropologie, Druzy wrap bracelet, $30
I love the ease of this piece.  It's got an airy feel to it.

Ann Taylor, Crossover Front Top, $44
I adore the detailing on this top. And it will be perfect for fall with a cardigan.

Modcloth, Juice Bar Sunglasses, $12
How much fun are these? I love this with pink lips!

Urban Outfitters, Kimichi Laser cut skimmers, $34
I'm picturing these with white skinny jeans and a hot pink pedicure.

What do you think of the color? I really like it for summer, it's such a departure from the neons or pinks.  It reminds me of vacation!

Be fabulous today!

Friday, July 22, 2011

Friday Foodday!

Hey lovebugs! Happy Friday! Any big plans?  This is my last weekend home before I head on vacation with my family so I will be enjoying some time with The BF.

Grilled Pineapple-Avocado Salsa
c/o Cooking Light
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1 pineapple, peeled, cored, and cut into 1/2-inch-thick slices
  • Cooking spray
  • 1/3 cup finely chopped red onion
  • 1/4 cup minced fresh cilantro
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground red pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 serrano chile, minced
  • 1 avocado

1. Preheat grill to high heat.
2. Combine oil and honey, stirring well. Brush oil mixture over pineapple. Place pineapple on a grill rack coated with cooking spray; grill 2 minutes on each side or until golden. Remove from grill; cool 5 minutes. Chop. Combine pineapple, onion, and next 6 ingredients (through serrano); toss gently.
3. Peel, seed, and dice avocado. Add avocado to the pineapple mixture, and toss gently.

Pasta with Italian Chicken Sausage, Peppers and Escarole
c/o Skinny Taste

  • 12 oz Ronzoni Smart taste pasta (or whole wheat or low carb)
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 red bell pepper, chopped
  • 5 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 lb Italian chicken sausage, removed from casing
  • 1 medium head escarole, rinsed and torn into bite sized pieces
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmigiano Reggiano
  • 1/4 tsp crushed red pepper
  • salt and fresh pepper to taste
Rinse escarole and tear into bite sized pieces. 
Cook pasta in a large pot of salted water. Reserve 1 cup water before draining.
While pasta water boils, heat a large non-stick skillet on medium heat. Add olive oil; when hot add onions, peppers, garlic, salt and pepper.   Cook until soft, about 4-5 minutes.  Add sausage, breaking up with a wooden spoon and cook until golden, about 6 to 8 minutes.  Add escarole, cover and cook 2 minutes; remove the cover, stir and cook about 3 more minutes or until wilted. Adjust salt and pepper to taste.  Add cooked pasta, red pepper flakes, reserved water and Parmigiano Reggiano, toss well and transfer to a large serving bowl. Serve immediately.

Fresh Peach Ice Cream
c/o Kitchen Bellicious

6 large very very ripe peaches
1 3/4 cups sugar
2 cans evaporated milk
2 cans sweetened condensed milk
2 cups of milk or half and half
1 1/2 TBSP vanilla
1 tsp salt

Peel, cut and peaches. Place peaches along with the vanilla, sugar and salt in a food processor or blender and blend or pulse for a minute until peaches are all mashed up. Transfer to a large mixing bowl. Add in the sweetened condensed milk, evaporated milk and regular milk ( if you have the ice cream machine with the steel cylinder bowl then pour as much milk as needed to reach the fill line). Cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes. Freeze in your ice cream machine according to the manufacturers directions.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Butter Yellow

Hey lovebugs!
Today I'm loving rich, buttery, yellow. Something bright and cheery to brighten your way to the weekend.

I just love the pleating around the waistline.  The print is just the right size.

You know I'm a sucker for sequins.  I'd pair this with a black suit for during the week and a pair of black shorts with heels with the weekends.

Oh Kate, you know simple perfection like no one else.  I picture these on my mom's dresser and I get to wear them on a very special occasion.

DSW, BB Kimmie Flat, $37
I really like the flower with this soft yellow hue.

Yellow isn't always mellow, in fact this buttery color is just what I need to give me an extra pep in my step!

Be fabulous today!

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Natural Bangles

Bangles are all the rage right now, but sometimes the jingle jangle on my arm gets a little old.  How about trying a bangle with a more natural texture? Oh and they offer a quieter option to the metal bracelets.

Forever 21, Vibrant Island Bangles, $3!
These are SO much fun.  They also come in yellow and light blue.

These are just so sweet.  Like a sundress wrapped up into a bracelet.

Ralph Lauren, Embellished Wooden Bangle, $35
I absolutely love these bangles.  They are so sophisticated but in the least flashiest way.

Need Supply, Mali Africa Bracelets, $14
Talk about color! This goes with everything: a maxi dress or shorts.

I really like the different materials in these bangles.  Try some out in resin, wood, enamel, or fabric.

Be fabulous today!

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

It's Hip to be Square

Right angles, straight lines, crisp and clean.  I'm loving a square print right now!  Check out these picks.

American Apparel, Vintage Silk Square Print Shift, $65
Ok, so the model looks miserable, but this color and groovy print is just perfect for some metallic sandals.

I'm loving this blouse now with a white pencil skirt for work and then in the winter with a yellow cashmere cardigan.

Sorry the picture isn't great, but I love this for errands on the weekend or a trip to the park with a book for the afternoon.

Canvas, Madras Scarf, $13
This is nice for a cooler summer night.  I'm picturing it with chino shorts and a t shirt.

I really like the square print because it's a fun take on stripes.  Be careful with the size of print, make sure it is in proportion to your size.

Be fabulous today!

Monday, July 18, 2011

Geometric Hoops

Let's talk hoops.  Not basketball, earrings.  But not just your normal circles, I'm talking geometric hoops, something more alluring to the eye.

Dainty, delicate, and just a touch rocker right?

Rachel Roy, Hematite tone squares, $26
I really love these with an LBD or a deep v neck.

Very simple like a hoop but this shape elongates the face.

Urban Outfitters, Tribal Point Hoop Earrings, $20
These are perfect for a breezy maxi dress, just enough bling.

I'm loving the simplicity of these earrings but these offer a little more edge.  Perfect for summer sweet dresses.

Be fabulous today!

Friday, July 15, 2011

Friday Foodday!

TGIF!!  What are you up to this weekend? I'm heading to PA with The BF for a graduation party.  Here's to sun, shopping and sales for everyone!

Berry Yogurt Popsicles
c/o Skinny Taste 
For the purple:

  • 1 cup blueberries
  • 1/2 cup blackberries
  • 6 oz fat free blueberry yogurt
  • 1 cup crushed ice
For the white:
  • 14 oz fat free vanilla yogurt
  • 2 tbsp agave or sugar
  • 1 cup crushed ice
For the pink:
  • 3/4 cup raspberries
  • 3/4 cup strawberries
  • 6 oz fat free strawberry yogurt
  • 1 cup crushed ice
Blend each color smoothie separately in a blender and set aside.

Pour the first color into the popsicle mold 1/3rd of the way and freeze for 30 minutes. Remove from the freezer and insert the sticks, then freeze one hour.

Add the white yogurt into each popsicle mold 1/3 of the way and freeze an additional hour. Add the purple smoothie and fill it to the top of the mold and freeze until ready to eat. 

Summer Risotto
c/o Stephanie Cooks
1/2 pint grape tomatoes, sliced in half (about 1 cup)
1 zucchini, sliced in coins and cut in half
Olive oil
Salt/garlic powder
1 tsp. olive oil
1 tsp. minced dried onions
1 cup arborio rice
4 cups broth (chicken or vegetable)
1 cup pecorino romano cheese, freshly shaved

1- Preheat the oven to 350. In a small dish toss the tomatoes and zucchini together. Drizzle olive oil over the mixture, season with salt and garlic powder. Bake for 45 minutes or so.
2- Meanwhile, bring the broth to a boil and lower the heat to a simmer.
3- In a large skillet, heat the 1 tsp olive oil and add the onion. Once it's hot, add the rice and stir well. Once it begins to lightly toast, add 1 cup of broth and lower the heat to medium/low. Allow the rice to absorb the broth. Once it's absorbed, add another cup. Continue until all broth is added.
4- When the last cup of broth is cooking with the rice, remove the veggies from the oven and stir into the rice mixture. Add the cheese, stirring well. Season with salt and pepper.
5- Allow to continue cooking until most of the liquid is absorbed. Serve hot. 

French Apple Dessert Square
c/o Annie Bakes
1 cup Bisquick or Jiffy mix
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 cup butter or margarine
Fruit Mixture:
6 cups sliced, peeled, tart apples
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 cup Jiffy or Bisquick mix
1 cup sugar
1 cup milk
2 tablespoons butter margarine, melted
4 eggs, beaten

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Lightly spray a 13 x 9 pan with cooking spray.  In medium bowl, mix 1 cup pancake mix and the brown sugar.  Cut in 1/4 cup butter, using a pastry blender, until crumbly; set aside.  In a large bowl, mix apples and cinnamon; spoon into pan.  IN a medium bowl, stir remaining ingredients until well blended.  Pour mixture over apples.  Sprinkle with streusel.  Bake for 45-55 minutes or until knife inserted in center comes out clean and top is golden brown.  Cool 30 minutes before cutting squares.  Store in refrigerator.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Shoulder Sweeping Earrings

Dangling earrings.  Sophisticated, elegant, and so chic.  I'm loving this style for a perfect summer evening.

Max and Chloe, Palm beach dangle earrings, $85
I love this color, it really pops with any hair color.

A little rocker no?  I'm loving the hard edges of this simple earring.

I like these because they are antique-y in style but modern in color.

Max and Chloe, Biu Bijoux orange chevron, $43
Ok I know this is the second Max and Chloe pick, but come on, these earrings are so fabulous.  They're like a statement piece beyond my wildest dreams.

So instead of layering on necklaces, try a big earring.  They're bold and functional for any occassion.

Be fabulous today!