The Best Bruschetta

I love Pioneer Woman’s blog and constantly find myself gravitating towards her recipes. Maybe it’s her snarky humor or her love of butter– I’m not sure– but I feel as though her kitchen is one I’d want to visit at some point in my life.

This bruschetta is the “best” for a couple of different reasons. First, cherry tomatoes (in my opinion) pack so much more flavor than other, larger ones. So we’re already on the right track by starting with delicious red and yellow nuggets of goodness. Second, minced garlic is an important, and often neglected element of a good bruschetta recipe. Giving the ingredients time to marinate with the garlic allows for some crazy good things to happen in that bowl. So if you’re making this, be sure to make it ahead of time because YES, wait time really does make a difference.

By the way, don’t tell Giada but I served my bruschetta on top of a toasted whole wheat English muffin. And I’m not sure England and Italy have worked so well together since before King Henry VIII. (Sorry for that… I’m in the middle of watching season 2 of The Tudors; couldn’t help myself).

Oh and one more thing… I added goat cheese on top because, well, it’s goat cheese. And it’s delicious. And it can make even the best bruschetta that much better.

Strawberry Pretzel Salad

I’m not quite sure why this is called a salad as it is most definitely a dessert. This is my go-to for parties, holidays, or just a quiet dinner at home with friends. This bad boy also won me a Target gift card at a Christmas party back in December, so it’s got the friend stamp of approval. I made a version of this recipe and find that the colors and salty sweet flavors make it a must-have dessert year-round. Try switching out the Jello colors for different holidays (green for St. Patricks Day, red for Memorial Day, pink for Easter… the world is your box of flavored gelatin). A few tips:

1. Add a teaspoon of real vanilla to your cream cheese mixture.
2. Make sure not to over bake your crust or it will become like cement! (Not that I’m speaking from experience or anything)
3. Wait to assemble your layers until everything (crust, cream cheese filling and Jello) has come to room temperature.
4. I find it’s best when eaten cold so the layers hold their shape.

Enjoy! x

The Green Smoothie Project

A few weeks ago I went to a Green Smoothie Girl presentation hosted by Robyn Openshaw here in Dallas. Robyn promotes a healthy, whole food lifestyle and has a pretty incredible story of how adjusting the way she ate impacted her health in dramatic ways. While I’m a long way from adjusting my eating habits to purely whole foods or converting to 60-80% (or more) raw, I decided the one thing I could commit to doing differently was adding a green smoothie to my daily routine. I have been faithful to my commitment for the past 3+ weeks and have already noticed some encouraging changes. Aside from simply feeling like I’m doing something good for my body every morning, I have quite literally cut my coffee intake in half due to increased energy and have experienced better digestion and hydration throughout the day.

If you want to learn more about a whole food lifestyle or start making your own green smoothies, check out Robyn’s website here.

Here is my current green smoothie recipe:

1/4 pound of kale
1/4 pound of spinach
3 cups water
1 banana
1/2 apple
2 tsp. flaxseed oil
3-4 whole, pitted dates for sweetness
(optional) 1/4 cup frozen berries