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Bread Dippin & Wine Sippin: Easy Cauliflower Soup

12 Apr

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Craving something with the texture of a fatty or creamy soup? Need something lower in calories? Or maybe you need to sneak in those “daily veggie” servings? Well look no further! This thick and delicious cauliflower soup is just what you need and easy to make.

Ingredients:
1 head of cauliflower chopped
3 cups of water
1 can of chicken broth
2 cubes of chicken bouillon
Spices to taste (I use garlic, lemon pepper, a little season salt, and a dash of cayenne for a kick!)

Add all ingredients to pot. Bring mixture to a boil. When it starts to boil take it back to a simmer and let it hang out there for about 20 minutes (or until the cauliflower is cooked all the way through). Then bust out your blender and purée the mixture and voila you’re done! This makes about three big bowls of soup, so adjust accordingly!

Bread & Wine used in this edition of BD&WS: Slices of French bread (great for dunking in the soup!) and some Franzia Sangria that needs to be gone from my fridge (as always, keepin it classy!).

Until next time mango readers!
❤ Jennee

Bread Dippin and Wine Sippin: Kielbasa and Cabbage and Pierogis Oh My!

8 Nov

Welcome to Bread Dippin and Wine Sippin, the MangoTree’s new cooking column! What’s with the title? My favorite thing to snack on while I cook is some good bread dipped in some kind of vinegar and olive oil. And wine too of course!

Eventually I would love to do cooking videos for these, but that seems like quite the production so we’ll have to see. Today’s recipe is for Kielbasa, Cabbage, and Pierogies!

So here’s what you need:

1 head of Cabbage

1/2 cup of Butter

1 cup of fresh sliced Mushrooms

seasoned Salt

2 cans of Beer

14 oz of Kielbasa

minced Garlic

1/2 Onion chopped

3 tbls of Worcestershire sauce

3 tbls of Balsalmic Vinegar

12 Pierogies

14.5 oz of diced Tomatoes

Shredded cheese of choice

This makes quite a bit! I would say it would serve around 8 people, so adjust accordingly. Or do as I do and make big meals with full intentions of eating the leftovers for a couple days. I imagine this would also freeze well for longer term storage.

Start by throwing the mushrooms and butter into a LARGE pot. I made the mistake of using one that was just a little too small, so I had to transfer everything later. Go big or go home people! Turn the heat up to medium and let the butter melt. In the meantime, remove the outer layers of the cabbage and the core. Chop the rest of the cabbage. Don’t worry about pieces being too big. The cabbage will soften during the boiling process. Which brings me to the next step!

BEER! That’s right, throw the cabbage in with the mushrooms and butter and then pour the two cans of beer over the mixture and stir. If you’re making this for the kiddies or don’t like the taste of beer (in other words, you’re crazy) chicken broth can be used instead. Give it a couple healthy shakes of seasoned salt. The recipe I based this dish off of required two tablespoons, but that seemed like a lot to me, so I just eyeballed it. Bring this concoction to a boil, put a lid on it, and let in simmer down now…

Next slice up the sausage and dice your half onion. Throw that in a frying pan over medium-high heat with some minced garlic (again, I eyeballed. Probably about a tablespoon and a half), and the balsamic vinegar, and Worcestershire sauce. Let that cook until the onions are translucent (approx. five minutes). I also got a little creative at this point and threw in some red pepper flakes, oregano, basil, and lemon pepper.

After the onions go clear, combine the two mixtures in the big pot and stir. Recover the pot and let it simmer for another 10-15 minutes.

Now it’s pierogi time! Boil some salted water and add the frozen pierogies to it. Only boil them for about 4-5 minutes. You’ll know they are done when they float to the top.

After the pierogies start floating, add them to the big pot. Open your can of tomatoes, drain them, and add them to the pot as well. Let this final mixture warm for another 5-10 minutes.

You’re almost done! Scoop the finished dish onto a plate and sprinkle with a cheese of your choice ( I used Monterrey Cheddar) and some parsley flakes.  Voila! Or as they say in Poland- Smacznego!

Race Day: Tyranena Beer Run

5 Nov

Today I’m running 1/6 of a marathon at the Tyranena Beer Run! Tyranena is a small brewery in Lake Mills, Wisconsin. The brewery was founded in 1998 and is located about 50 minutes outside of Milwaukee.

According to the brewery website the legend of Tyranena (pronounced Tie·rah·nee·nah) began long ago, in a time before history was written. Legend tells of a foreign tribe that built a series of stone structures and effigy mounds on the edge of a lake they called Tyranena. Today, these structures lie preserved deep under the waters of Rock Lake. No one knows for sure who built them, the purposes they served, how and why they are now submerged, or even the meaning of the word Tyranena.

Today the brewery produces six beers year round (Three Beaches Honey Blonde, Headless Man Amber Alt, Stone Tepee Pale Ale, Bitter Woman IPA, Rocky’s Revenge, Chief Blackhawk Porter) and six seasonal beers (Down’n Dirty Stout, Fargo Brothers Hefeweizen, Scurvy IPA, Gemuetlichkeit Oktoberfest, Painted Ladies Pumpkin Spice, and Sheep Shagger Scotch Ale).  Whoever named these beers is my new hero.

As far as I can tell, this is the fifth year of the race. Me and 1400 other runners will either compete in the 1/2 barrel race (a half marathon aka 13.1 miles) or the 1/6 barrel race (1/6 of a marathon aka 4.3 miles). Obviously I’m only doing the 1/6 barrel, but maybe I’ll do the 1/2 next year!

You have to be 21 years old to race, and upon finishing you receive two beers and a lasagna dinner! Sounds like the perfect setup to me. Wish me luck!

 

I Love Strawberries!

4 Nov

Wanna know why? According to some science people, diets high in strawberries have a positive effect on the human stomach. This includes minimizing the damage of alcohol. Ipso facto, if you eat lots of strawberries, you can drink as much as you want!!! That’s what they meant right?

Cheers to strawberries!!!

Women Everywhere Rejoice! Chocolate and Fashion Together at Last!

2 Nov

The 17th Annual Salon du Chocolat trade show, Europe’s yearly chocolate trade show took place in Paris October 20-24. The trade show featured over 400 vendors showing off their chocolate sculptures, products, and demonstrations. Attendees could also check out the chocolate bookstore and the Cocoa Show (a production during which cocoa-producing countries present traditional music and dances from Bolivia, Brazil, Indonesia and other locales). The best part though? A fashion show where every piece of elaborate and detailed clothing was crafted completely from chocolate!

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I have some questions. Why aren’t these choco-frocks melting? Or cracking? This has got to get pretty messy… On the other hand, if you don’t like your dress you can always melt it down and make a new one. Or have dessert. Your choice really…

The Perfect Superbowl Dish!!! but it’s almost a week late

10 Feb

I’m hoping for a repeat next year, if only to be able to make this amazing looking dip! It’s actually just guac and black beans and queso and cream cheese, but with a little superbowl spice thrown in. It would be interesting to make a desert alternative… but what would you use for the dips? Hmmmm?

Girl Scout’s Cutting Cookie Lineup (Oh God Please Not the Thin Mints!!!)

4 Feb

Everyone’s pinching pennies nowadays, even the Girl Scouts! Which is why they plan on limiting their cookies sales to the “Super Six” next year. These six cookies represent over 77% of total cookie sales (which brought in $714 million last year) and cutting back the number of varieties in theory would make the sale more profitable, or something. There are currently 12 varieties for sale, which means the little girls in green (and blue and brown) will be cutting your calorie saturated cookie options in half!!! Yikes!!! So which cookies made the cut? Did your favorite get the ax???

Of Note (and something I didn’t really know until this year):

Girl Scout Cookies are regional. Not all varieties are available in all areas. Also, the price per box ranges from  $3.50-$4.00. The MKE falls in the middle at $3.75. You’ll only reach the $4 mark in big cities like New York and LA.  Lastly, depending on where you live your cookies may be called different things (insert soda vs. pop vs. coke analogy!). Would you like a Samoa or a Caramel deLite? Yeah, they’re the same thing….

Here are the Super-Six Super-Safe cookies!

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On the chopping block are:

Thank You Berry Munch’s (never heard of ’em, but they sound delish!), Lemonades (mildly sad about this one, a very light and tasty cookie), Dulce de Leche’s (another head scratcher, I was unaware of this cookie’s existence), Thanks A Lots AKA All Abouts(terribly disappointed, it’s like a shortbread only better), Shout Outs (new this year and apparently they didn’t catch, they replaced the little Daisy Go Rounds which also apparently didn’t catch), and lastly the sugar-free, diabetic friendly Chocolate Chips (yawn).

I think they kept all the iconic ones, do any of the cuts upset you? Also please share your favorite cookie and cookie rationing/hoarding stories. I have friends who keep Thin Mints in the freezer with the goal being that they last until the next selling season (when in fact they only last a few weeks, maybe a month tops!).

By the way- despite all my Thin Mint talk, Caramel deLites are my favorite 🙂

Cupcakes by Chanel

20 Jan

These fashionable cupcakes were designed by a Swedish prop designer and they look absolutely delicious and amazing. I love how they perfectly match the aesthetic of each design house, especially the Louboutins!

Mmm $400,000 Tuna Yummy Yummy

13 Jan

A giant bluefin tuna was sold to a wholesaler for a record $396,000 at the first fish auction of the year in Tokyo. The big fishy weighed 752.4 lbs. He (or she) will be cut up by the wholesaler and sold to upscale sushi restaurants in Japan and Hong Kong for about $2,600.00 per pound. That will be one expensive tuna melt, certainly more expensive than:

10 Food Trends to Watch

12 Jan

Like fashion, food has seasons. For every “it” color or hairstyle, there is an “it” fruit or cooking method. Does everyone remember when bottled water was all the rage? Or the acai or pomegranate crazes? Well last week the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel published a Top 10 List for food crazes that are on the rise. Some of them are pretty interesting…

1. FORAGED FOOD is the new organic produce

The local/organic food movement has held my attention for a few years now, and as much as I’d like to make that lifestyle adjustment, I haven’t been financially capable. So just when I’m ready to start making real money, the foodies go and change it on me! Now food found out in the wild is the new hott thing.

2. BITTERS are the new home brew

This takes the home-created cocktail one step further. Now your home-created cocktail is filled with homemade ingredients.

3. BACKYARD BEES are the new urban chickens

I would love to have both home raised chickens and a beehive someday. My retirement is going to be interesting. Lol.

4. BROWNED BUTTER is the new butter

First butter was king. Then margarine dethroned it. Then all the preservatives and mystery ingredients caused the more natural butter to reclaim its throne. Now the sexy spread is browned butter, butter that has been caramelized over medium heat. Browned butter imparts a delicate, nutty taste and pairs well with brown sugar, which is why it is all the rage for baked goods.

5.GRASS-FED BEEF is the new free-range chicken

This is nothing new. If you want a taste of some grass fed beef go to Sobleman’s Tall Grass on Farwell. Muy delicioso!!!

6. ARTISANAL HOT DOGS are the new panini

7. THE SCIENCE AND TRAVEL CHANNELS are the new Food Network

8. RECIPE APPS are the new cookbook

Duh. This was bound to happen in our increasingly mobile world. Recipes are particularly useful while you’re at the grocery store- no more forgetting ingredients!

9. HOME PRESERVES are the new home gardens

Another thing I’d eventually like to take up is home-canned foods. I’ve been eating homemade pickles my whole life and I’d love to try it myself!

10.GLUTEN-FREE is the new nut-free

I went through a period where my doctor thought I was allergic to gluten (turned out to be acid reflux) but anyways, I’m glad to see this is trending because almost all food has gluten in it. Now people with Celiac Disease will have options!!!

Chocoholics Unite!

29 Dec

Found a recipe I’m dying to try for Chocolate Mousse. It only calls for two ingredients: chocolate and water. Sounds like one of those too-good-to-be-true/ easier-said-than-done kinda things, but as soon as I get to the grocery store, I’ll be giving this one a whirl!

The recipe also encourages you to experiment with adding a little booze to the mix. Amaretto, Grand Marnier, Bacardi Razz??? The possibilities are endless! And hopefully delicious!!!

Auto/USB Heated Coffee Mug

29 Dec

Yesterday I wrote briefly about a brilliant gift idea, but this little gadget probably beats it out. It’s a coffee mug that plugs into the cigarette lighter adapter in your car to keep your beverage warm and toasty while you drive. BUT WAIT! THERE’S MORE! Then when you get to work, you can plug your mug into any USB to maintain that oh so wonderful temperature throughout the day. Unfortunately, I could only find it available for purchase in bulk, but I’m sure you know 50 coffee drinkers anyway, so no big.

Caffeinated Bliss: Perky Jerky

17 Dec

Spending the past week (no literally, I didn’t leave. I brought a change of clothes with me for work the next day) in the library has really made me appreciate all things caffeinated or energy boost related. Why can’t everything we ingest be caffeinated?

Well apparently, someone else agrees with me and created Perky Jerky, which is basically the product of a Red Bull doing the nasty with an actual bull. Here’s the product description from the Perky Jerky website:

Put simply, we’ve created the most tender and tasty beef jerky, flavored with Guarana to provide a jerky experience you won’t find anywhere else. All natural, no MSG, no preservatives, low carbs: Perky Jerky provides lasting satisfaction with no crash, no sugar rush, and no bloating. Just a great, portable and satisfying snack to boost you to the next level no matter what your pursuit.

Sign me up! All of that sounds amazing! And Guarana fruit contains twice the amount of caffeine as a coffee bean, despite their comparable size, which is awesome!

Now I couldn’t think of where I had heard of Guarana before; I just assumed that it was from one of the many energy boosters I’d tried over the years. Then I realized which blast from the past contained this magical extract: Bawls– an energy soda I hadn’t had in years! Now I have two things added to my grocery list!

Fight Your Cold With Booze

26 Nov

So excited to try some of these… If you’re feeling under the weather, going out and having a good time is the last thing you want to do. I say nay!

Five Holiday Cocktails

25 Nov

I’m lacking in Thanksgiving-inspired content, so I’m shamelessly borrowing two holiday posts from Apartment Therapy.

Follow this link for yummy holiday cocktails you can mix up to get you through the day…

Things I Plan to do When I Graduate Part 2

19 Nov

When I moved out of my parents’ house, I immediately loved having a kitchen of my own (and my roommates were fans most of the time as well). I love cooking! And baking! Especially from scratch…

Baked Tilapia with California Veggies over Wild Rice

The Famous Mexican Lasagna

So when I read this article in the Journal Sentinel about making your own kitchen staples from scratch I was so intrigued. The problem, as so many students who also have to work practically full time on top of classes can atest to, is that I have very little time to do these things. Between work and classes and homework and trying to maintain a social life, if I manage to get a spare moment, I’m probably catching up on sleep and not even thinking about making my own peanut butter.

Fortunately all of that can change in one month! Making fresh butter and peanut butter and granola sounds so interesting. And I’ll know exactly what goes in my creations! No additives or preservatives or extra mystery ingredients or over-processing!

Maintaining a local/organic diet and cooking for my family everyday is something I long for. It is the only way to fix the broken food system, however I’m just not financially able to make those decisions at this point… Hopefully that changes shortly after graduation as well 🙂

My attitude towards food was completely revolutionized by the Environmental Media class I took (JMC-ers look into it!) last spring. It added a number of books to my reading list… Which leads into next week’s segment of “Things I Plan to do When I Graduate”

But for now…

30 DAYS LEFT

Spooning While Writing Has Never Been So Easy…

17 Nov

Aww did you think I meant “spooning?” Look at me luring you to my blog with sex! So misleading…

I actually just wanted you to see these cool eating utensil pen caps that you can use to multitask on your lunch break! Fun Fact: the caps are completely sustainable and the wrappers they come in are designed to be compostable as well! Found on Design Spotter.

A Better McRib

15 Nov

So I had never had a McRib sandwich until about a week ago. It was pretty Meh, I honestly don’t see what all the hype is about. I’ll give it another shot, but while eating it I couldn’t help but think “I’ve had waayy better pork sandwiches.”

So when I saw this post detailing specifically how to make a better McRib sandwich, I thought I’d pass it on in case anyone else was feeling as disappointed as I was. If I end up making it I’ll re-review the McRib concept and update you accordingly 🙂

Robert Downey Jr: Making Monacles Sexy Again

13 Nov

Not sure if the anthropomorphic nuts are creepy or cool. You be the judge!

PS: Mr. Peanut is voiced by Iron Man himself in case you couldn’t tell!

Shoot A Brew

13 Nov

Probably one of the coolest things I’ve seen in a long time:

For $295 your tailgate could be the hottest spot in the parking lot! The coolest cooler you’ll ever see holds 24 12oz cans plus ice, has a waterproof remote control, standard wheels and handle and of course an automatic tossing device that reloads in 2 seconds…

You can only pre-order them due to high demand, but here’s the link!

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