Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Chocolate Lover

I love chocolate. I do, I love it. As I've gotten older my taste buds have become a bit more discriminatory. While I will always love a good old milk chocolate Hershey's bar (preferably with a roasted marshmellow and graham cracker!), I so enjoy and appreciate some high quality dark chocolate.

Two weeks ago Ella was going to a birthday party for a school friend and it turned out the party was located right next door to a gourmet chocolate factory store, Antoine Amrani. I knew nothing about it, would have had no clue, if not for the sign saying it sold gourmet chocolates. I stopped in after dropping Ella at the party, took a look around the elegant small store front (the majority of the place is their factory) and of course enjoyed a sample of delicious, delectable dark chocolate truffle.

When I picked Ella up for the party she begged to go in the chocolate store to try something out. I couldn't say no so we went in but there were other people there sampling and actually buying stuff, so no one offered us anything and it felt awkward to be browsing around when it was obvious that my six year old just wanted some free chocolate! So I scouted out the cheapest thing I could buy which was a big square chocolate covered brownie. Of course when I was buying it they pulled out the samples and Ella got to indulge in a yummy taste of truffle - I was so proud of her because she loved it! She's her momma's girl!

Anyway, to make a long short story a little less long...

I waited awhile to break into the brownie. I even thought about giving it away a few times! But eventually I opened it up and took a little bit. Swoon. Seriously, it was so good. A thin coating of chocolate surrounding a rich fudgie brownie - delicious!

I've been taking little tiny bites every couple of days- I really can't imagine eating it all at once, it would be way too rich (ok, who I am kidding, pre healthy-eating-lifestyle I would have totally eaten it all at once.). The other day I broke off a bigger piece than intended so I figured it would be the perfect chance to share the love.

"Matt, you gotta try this gourmet brownie, it's so good..." and on and eventually he agreed and took a bite.

Do you want to hear what he said? I'm still in disbelief days later.

He said it tasted like a Swiss Cake Roll!

I still can't wrap my head around the comparison....seriously.... a Swiss Cake Roll? If you could see my face as I typed that, you would see a look of shock and disbelief!

So anyway, any chocolate lover's out there want to join me in my next visit? It's either that or I take Ella with me!

Friday, April 23, 2010

Random bits

We've been keeping busy enjoying all the beautiful weather we've been blessed with these last few weeks. The girls have spent hours and hours playing with the neighbor boys and there are sidewalk chalk drawings up and down, not only our sidewalk, but the neighbor's as well!

Matt and I are in week 5 of our P90x workout/eating regime. So far so good. I'm definitely sticking with the workout part of it more strictly than the eating. I have been doing well curbing my tendency to snack throughout the day, but when I fall I tend to fall hard. Case in point, I made homemade chocolate chip cookies (what was I thinking, baked goods are definitely one of my weak points) and took them to our small group meeting last night. I lost track of how many cookies I ended up eating!

Another random bit of news. I am slowly coming to grips with the reality that Matt is going to buy a (used) truck. This has been developing for a long while now and I voiced my strong opposition to it, but apparently he has not been persuaded by my fine arguing skills! If anything his obsession with craigslist and other used car sites persuaded me to not make a fuss over it anymore, because after a year plus of it I realized he was not giving up. So I grew up in Central Pennsylvania in a small town where hunter's safety was a required course in middle school and we got off of school for the first two days of hunting season every year and we always got tons of snow every winter - all that time, my family never had a truck. Now, living 15 minutes from the biggest mall on the east coast, smack dab in suburbia, I am soon to be a truck owner. Still can't picture myself cruising around in the truck when Matt's home with the kids and I'm out running errands. I may come to love it, but then again, I may become even more grateful for my minivan!

Finally (nothing like a completely random blog post to catch up on a few weeks of absence)...Ella is definitely one of those kids who gets caught up in having the latest and greatest cool thing. The other day she said something to Matt and me that topped all her other requests...

"Mom, when I'm old enought have a cell phone, I want an iPhone. Just so you know."

Seriously, her words exactly. What do you do with a six year old who says that?! After laughing out loud, I told her that she would have to have a job that would pay for the iPhone......but to myself I said, puh-lease child, there is no way you are getting an iPhone before your dad does! :)

Have a great weekend!

Monday, April 05, 2010

Three Things and more...

Three things to share with you all today....

First of all, thank you so much for all the input, via comments on the blog and on facebook, regarding the naming of my new venture. Please keep throwing any ideas or suggestions my way!

I would love it if you would weigh on the two ideas that, thus far, I like the most. I won't tell you who suggested them (even though you could go back and read comments and figure it out) but this way you don't have to worry that your opinion will make someone feel bad!

Delectable Dishes It was suggested as DeMontaigne's Delectables, but I changed it a bit, but still leaving credit with the first person to mention Delectable.

Piece of Cake Catering (and more). I really like the tag line that was suggested..."we make all your catering needs as easy as pie." So clever! But does it limit me to coming across as more of a dessert person?

There were many others I liked and I can't even say for sure that these are the only two I'm picking from. If someone suggests something that jumps out at me as really fitting, I'll have to go with it. But these are the ones that have stuck with me all week.

Let me know what you think!

Secondly, we had a wonderful Easter weekend. I know this should be first, but I felt like I owed and update on the whole naming process going on. Can you remember the last time we enjoyed this type of weather over Easter?
I think the last time we had nice Easter weather is probably the last time we took a nice family picture at Easter time. With Matt out the door a few hours before us and home after us, we rarely are all in the same place, sitting still, while still wearing our dress clothes (our dressier clothes probably qualify as most people's regular Sunday attire!)! In fact, just minutes after taking the below picture, both girls spilled orange juice on their dresses and changed the second we walked in the house.

I had the camera handy because the girls had danced in church and I took lots of pictures. But I'm saving them for another post because I have confidence in my ability to download the video I took and post it to the blog. It's only happened once before using our actual video camera (as opposed to a video taken using our regular digital camera) but I really have faith that I am going to find the elusive cord that makes it possibly and share it with you all later this week!

Thirdly I think most people end up serving ham as the main course for Easter and I wanted to share a yummy recipe for those of you looking to use up some of your leftovers. It's super simple and pretty healthy.

Jamaican Ham and Bean Soup

1 TBS oil
1/3 cup chopped onion
2 16oz cans vegetarian refried beans
1 can whole kernel corn with red and green peppers
1 can white shoepeg corn
1 small can chopped green chiles
1/2 cup chunky salsa
1 can fat free/low sodium chicken broth
1 tsp Jamaican jerk seasoning
1 lb cooked ham, cut into 1/2 inch pieces
2oz can sliced ripe olives drained
1/3 cup lime juice.

Heat oil in large saucepan and saute onion 3-4 minutes until tender.
Add next seven ingredients (up to the ham), mix well and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low, simmer five minutes, stirring occasionally.
Add ham, olives and lime juice. *My husband doesn't like olives but he is fine with this b/c they are easily picked out. I usually don't add the whole can. Also, the lime juice is pretty strong, but an essential flavor to the soup. If you are uncertain how you'll like it, just add a bit at a time and sample it. * Cook until thoroughly heated, about 3-4 minutes.

Serve with a dollop of sour cream and lime slice!

I know this calls for a tsp of Jamaican jerk seasoning and I imagine not many of you have it. I bought it years ago for this recipe and have used it for a few others as well. I never mind buying a specialty spice like this since it's a flavor I like and it's still good after all this time. If you're local, feel free to come borrow a teaspoon from me!!! :)

It's a pretty healthy dish, not sure how low carb it is, but it's all good complex carbs so I think it would pass the P90x test....which is the workout and diet plan that Matt and I are currently on week three of. Because of my current weight if I was sticking strictly to the diet plan I would only be allowed one portion of carbs per day. I intend to stick to it, but I allow myself some wiggle room (, you know... Easter dinner!) so I can sustain it over the next few months. The eating plan is coupled with an intense workout plan that I am hating less and less as the weeks go by, but I still miss my quick, but still difficult, workouts with Jillian Michaels! I'm still in the early stages of this and hoping I can see it through to the end.

I think that ended up being more like four things. I wonder if I should go back and change the beginning? Nahhh...then I'd have to delete this sentence and that would be 10 seconds I'd never get back. Ok, I should stop before I head down this road of randomness....

I hope you all had a wonderful Easter! He is Risen! Or as my girls say...He is rose. He is rose indeed! :)

Related Posts with Thumbnails