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Friday, February 25, 2011

Who Who rocks the house?

I'm on a Modcloth kick today.  I'm looking for some fun home accessories, nick nacs if you will, for Blake and I's home.  We are thinking about putting some floor to ceiling bookcases in our bedroom along one wall and I'm virtually filling them up already.  Here are a few things that caught my eye for the shelves along with a few others just for fun.

I saw this little guy first thing.  He's a piggy bank, or maybe I should call him an owl-y bank...Either way, I thought he would look great perched up on one of the shelves next to, or on top of some books.  At least that's what I thought until I found this a few pages later.

An owl-y light!  I know that my taste definitely is not for everyone, but if you don't like it for yourself how cute of a night light would this be in a child's room?

Speaking of books for the shelves...

I lost it when I saw this coffee table book.  I was laughing and sad at the same time.  Poor brontosaurus.  Anyone still remember all the dinosaur names we learned in grade school?  I loved learning about them.  Mister mister up in the picture was one of my favorites along with the stegosaurus.  Never cared for T-Rex or taradactyls.  Give me the veggie eaters anyday.  Oh Land Before Time...

Then of course I came across some kitchen goodies.

Chip clips-How tweet!  (Was the pun too much??)

Mod tea cups and saucers. 

Love this glass water bottle.

Sandwich or sides lunch carrier.  No more plastic baggies filling up our landfills!

And of course I had to pick out a set of...Can you guess??

S&P shakers!  These would go beautifully with the rest of my collection!

If you see anything you like visit Modcloth's website here and click on their "Apartment" tab to find these goodies and more. 

Have a beautiful weekend!


Xo-Wife of Wright

Thursday, February 24, 2011

I have a crush...

On Ree Drummond.  A.K.A. The Pioneer Woman.  She's funny, she's smart, she cooks food I love, and she's quirky.  I love quirky.  A lot.  She just seems like I could be related to her somehow.  I come from a long line of quirky women, especially on my mother's side.  She is from Oklahoma and lives out on a ranch with her husband and four kids in the northeastern part of the state.  I wish I could visit there, meet her, borrow some funky jewelry, and pet her dog Charlie.  Do I sound crazy yet??  Oh I do?  Well, don't tell anyone, especially not Ree, I want her to like me. 
One of my Valentine's Day gifts from Blake.  You can purchase it here.  

A couple of days ago Ree posted a recipe for Creamy Chicken Spaghetti Cassarole.  She said to make it that night, that you wouldn't be sorry if you did.  I needed to go to the grocery store over lunch anyways so I printed off the recipe and took it with me.  I'm so glad I did.  Blake is even happier I did.  So yummy. 

You can find the recipe here.  Ignore her lovely pictures that she took with a much better camera than mine during daylight hours.  Okay, don't ignore them.  Like I said, they're lovely.  They make you want to dive through the screen fork first and steal a bite.  Just give me a break okay, I'm trying! 

Anyways...this dish is wonderful and will feed a ton of people.  Blake and I have eaten off of it for three days and even sent some home with my mom.  Thanks Ree for such a great recipe!

Xo-Wife of Wright

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

The breakfast sandwich for dinner, what a glorious thing!

Today I thought it appropriate to start with the picture instead of leading up to it.  Just look at this sandwich.  Let me start by telling you what is in it.  I pre-heated the oven to toast the bread a little bit.  While that was happening I made a basic omlette.  Eggs, milk/cream/half and half (whatever you have on hand, it helps make the omlette fluffy and light), s&p, and dill weed.  When the omlette was almost set and ready to be folded I dolloped some marscapone cheese right into the center of the omlette.  I had mixed a little sour cream and capers into it to thin it out some and add some flavor.  When the bagette came out of the oven I smeared one side with the marscapone cheese mixture and the other with some black truffle butter.  I did this just because I had it and everything is better with black truffle butter.  If you don't have any, skip this step, it will be almost as delicious.  Finally before placing the top half of the bread I topped the egg with some smoked salmon.  I love the stuff.  I served the sandwich with some skillet potatoes that were cooked in a little olive oil and simply dressed with s&p and parsley and a nice salad.  Wonderful dinner and very quick and easy to make. 

I encourage everyone to have a breakfast sandwich for dinner tonight.

Xo-Wife of Wright

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

All of that food and all you got was a picture of cupcakes?

It's true.  I catered my first party this weekend and in all the hustle and bustle I took one picture.  This is humorous because I made eight different items.  That's a 12.5% success rate on catching the pretty food for my blog.  FAIL. 

I was honored that one of my best friends Carrie and her husband Brendan asked me to cater a party at their house after their son James was Baptised on Sunday.  There were about 30 people to cook for and Carrie wanted heavy appetizers.  I settled on these dishes with Carrie's approval:

Tri-Colore Orzo Salad
Roman Tomato Salad
Italian Kabobs
Polenta bites with Pesto Chicken
Salmon Pizzettes
Parmesan Frites
Fruit Kabobs
Mini Chocolate Cupcakes with Cream Cheese frosting

Didn't all of those dishes look amazing??!!  Oh you couldn't see them, right...Well, didn't they all SOUND amazing??!! 

All in all I think it turned out really well.  I found myself very relaxed while preparing everything and was so happy that my estimates on quantity of food for the amount attending were pretty much spot on.  I think everyone enjoyed the food and I know I enjoyed having my ego stroked a few times when people found out I was the one who had prepared everything.  I wasn't able to walk through narrow doors for the remainder of that day due to the size of my noggin. 

Drumroll please.............

72 of those bad boys, plus a mini cake.  Cute right??

And here's the man of the hour with his parents and God-parents Ashley Model and Juan Pinzon.  What a wonderful day!  Congrats Parker's, God-parents and especially James.  Love you all!

Xo-Wife of Wright

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

He loves me, Ceelo loves me not...

I love St. Valentine's Day.  I know a lot of people think it's all propaganda created by card, flower, and candy companies, but you know what I say to those people?  #1.  You are saying this because you yourself are single and can't stand all the love going around.  In turn I would say share the love with everyone, you don't have to have a significant other to enjoy the day.  #2.  You are not single but have a spouse/significant other who does not like the holiday.  See what I would suggest from reason #1. #3.  You are a bitter and half glass empty type of person and we should not hang out.  I have no suggestions for you.  Here is a little bit about St. Valentine courtesy of Wikipedia

"The first representation of Saint Valentine appeared in the Nuremberg Chronicle (1493); alongside the woodcut portrait of Valentine, the text states that he was a Roman priest martyred during the reign of Claudius II, known as Claudius Gothicus. He was arrested and imprisoned upon being caught marrying Christian couples and otherwise aiding Christians who were at the time being persecuted by Claudius in Rome."

Poor Valentine.  He was just trying to marry Christians who wanted to marry and mean ol' Claudius had to go and ruin it.  So that's the backstory.  Not too shabby of a guy right?  

In addition I would like to credit my parents with giving me a healthy view of what St. Valentine's Day should be about.  Sharing your love for everyone, not just romantic love.  They always made sure I had Valentine's every year and a special day.  My mom still puts out two construction paper placemats that I made in school for St. Valentine's Day when I was about 8 or 9.  Ate off of them on Sunday in fact.  Thanks Mom and Dad. 

Before the day came I baked lots of goodies to share.  I boxed up packages for Blake's parents, his sister and brother in law, and my mom.  I kept some back for any friends we might see over the holiday.  The day of Blake and I celebrated all day long and in to the evening.  He made me breakfast in bed.  We had yummy breakfast burritos.  I made him this for lunch:

Chipotle Cheddar Chicken Mac and Cheese with Bacon Crumbles

It was delish.  Leave me a comment if you would like the recipe. 

For dinner we had reservations at Saii for sushi.  We had our first date there 3 and 1/2 years ago.  I even pulled out the same blouse I wore back then and sported it for nostalgias sake.  We had a wonderful meal and funny enough my best friend Carrie and Brendan ended up two tables down from us.  Fun coincidence and made for some mini chats throughout the meal.  We left stuffed and went home for a couch picnic.  Blake still had his gifts to open and when he was done we shared a wonderful bottle of Pinot Grigio courtesy of Blake's parents, some chocolate, and a movie.  Perfect ending to a lovely day. 

On a less cheesy note.  Ceelo loves me not.  Did anyone else catch his dog puppet flipping off the camera at the end of his performance?  I guess he got the real lyrics in after all...

Xo-Wife of Wright

Thursday, February 10, 2011

W.O.W. Look-a-like: A little Chili's when it's chilly...

We encountered another snow day yesterday and I, of course, spent most of my down time figuring out what I could create in the kitchen.  I will preface this Chili's remake by saying Blake and I do not eat out at Chili's very often 1. because it's not good for you 2. it's always crowded with "mall folk" and 3. there are SO many better places to eat.  That being said every once in awhile when we're lazy and craving grease it fits the bill.  Our go to appetizer is their Southwestern Eggrolls.  They are an eggroll filled with blackbeans, corn, red bell pepper, chicken, cheese, a blend of southwest spices, etc.  They are deep fried and served with a spicy ranch.  Good-yes.  Good for you-NO.  Because of our love for these little nuggets and my urge to be able to eat them I came up with these. 

Blaked Southwestern Eggrolls

Num, num, num!  They turned out really well.  The only thing I would change is that I would flip them half way through the cooking time so that one side didn't cook slighly darker than the other. 

Since I was home all day yesterday I took the time to take pictures of all of the steps.  Having daylight helps tremendously with this.  They aren't all perfect, but they certainly help you get the idea of how making them works.  The mixture contains cooked diced chicken, bacon, corn, black beans, red bell pepper, jalenpeno, spinach, pepper jack cheese, cumin, chili powder, cayenne, garlic powder, s&p.  Cook the diced bacon first until crispy, remove it from the pan.  Add the diced chicken and cook through.  To the chicken add 2/3 of a cup of corn and drained and rinsed black beans.  Add 1/2 diced red bell pepper, 1 diced jalepeno, and one package of frozen spinach that has been defrosted and squeezed of all excess water.  Add bacon back in.  One teaspoon each of chili powder and cumin.  Dash of cayenne, garlic powder, s&p.  After everything has cooked together for 5-7 minutes over medium heat remove the pan from the heat and stir in a cup and a half of shredded pepper jack cheese.  Allow mixture to cool slightly and start stuffin'!  Here is the mixture after it has cooked all together:

Place the eggroll wrapper in front of you laying so that it looks like a diamond.  Next place about 3 tablespoons of mixture in the middle of the eggroll wrapper. 

Fold the corner closest to you over the mixture.  Pull the two sides in over the first flap.  It will look like an open envelope at this point.  Wet the top corner with a little water and roll all the way up.

Place a cooling rack on a parchment lined cookie sheet, spray with non-stick spray, and place the eggrolls.

I like to use a cooling rack on the cookie sheet so that the heat in the oven can circulate all the way around the eggrolls.  No one wants soggy rolls.  Bake at 400 degrees for 12-14 minutes flipping half way through the cooking time.  I served them with low fat avacado ranch and it was delish.  These would have been perfect for the super bowl, but we already had too much on the menu.  I would dare to say that any time you need a good appetizer to share these would be much appreciated. 


Xo-Wife of Wright

Monday, February 7, 2011

Ding ding, Round 2!

Hello all!  I know I have been M.I.A. for the past week, but I couldn't help it.  Just look what happened!

Nothing about a foot of snow on the ground was motivation to get on the computer.  Being stuck at home in the snow WAS motivation to cook a lot though.  Here's how I kept myself busy while hubby was still working from home. 

Day One:  Breakfast

We were warm and cozy on Tuesday morning while the snow was coming down.  What better motivation to get up than a warm plate of biscuits, turkey sausage gravy, eggs and bacon.  Got the blood flowing, or slowing.  Your choice...

Day One:  Mid-Afternoon

Pomme Frites a.k.a. French Fries.  I had never made them at home before.  Did it the right way with oil and double frying.  Very time consuming and probably wouldn't do it again without a small fryer instead of adjusting temperature in my dutch oven over and over again.  Made a nice little Pesto Aioli to dip them in.  Yum.

Day Two:  Dinner

I had a can of whole San Marzano tomatoes in the pantry as well as the ingredients for a soffritto to get a nice sauce started right.  A soffritto is the aromatic flavor base for most Italian sauces.  In this case I used onion, carrot, celery, and garlic in olive oil.  I also added a bay leaf.  These things scent and flavor the entire dish.  After that it's simply adding the pureed tomatoes and letting the sauce reduce and the flavors combine.  Toss with hot al dente pasta and top with parmesan and parsley. 

Yesterday for the super bowl I slow cooked a pork shoulder for pulled pork and made Smoked Sausage, Wild Rice and Corn soup.  Both were very tasty, but alas I forgot to take pictures.  Eek!  I will post the soup recipe tomorrow.  It made a ton, as did the pork shoulder.  I know what Blake and I will be eating all week!  I guess it's a good thing though because Round 2 of Snowmegedon 2011 is due to start tomorrow evening.  It's the darndest thing I've ever seen.  I plan on making one last grocery trip tonight so that I can play with a few new recipes if the storm hits.  Snow is not good for your waistline, but it sure is tasty!

Xo-Wife of Wright