Easy Organic Vegetable Stir Fry

Happy Monday, folks! 
Fun fact about me: I absolutely hate cold weather. Fun fact about Joshua: He loves it. I can already tell that there will be an ongoing argument over the thermostat in our house once we're married. Le sigh...

While we don't agree on weather and temperature, we do agree on lots of other things, like the consumption of good food, for example. We both love cooking, and we both love eating! We also both appreciate good Asian cuisine, and when we have the chance to cook good Asian cuisine, and then eat it, it's a win-win.

One of the easiest Asian entrees to make at home is stir fry. You can put almost anything in it, cook it all in one pan at one time, plus it's both carnivore and vegetarian-friendly. 

What you will need: White Basmati Rice,  Organic Low-sodium Soy Sauce, Himalayan Pink Salt, Organic Coconut Oil (we used refined), and the Trader Joe's Asian Vegetable Stir Fry. We didn't add any protein to ours, but feel free to add shrimp, chicken, or egg.

While you can make the entire stir fry in one pan, we decided to set the rice to boil in a separate pot before we began cooking the vegetables. 

Once the rice was cooked, we began with the vegetables. In a wok, or large skillet, turn the burner to medium heat and add about a spoonful of coconut oil. Once the coconut oil is sizzling, add in the vegetables. After the vegetable have cooked for about five minutes, add in a tablespoon of soy sauce and a bit more coconut oil. You'll want to make sure the vegetables don't stick to the wok.

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Once the vegetables are cooked, turn the burner to low heat and add in the rice. Add a bit more soy sauce, and a little more coconut oil. Cook until the rice is heated. 

Turn off the heat, and salt to taste.

The entire meal took about thirty minutes to prepare, and it was delicious, if I do say so myself. Did it taste authentic? Eh, probably not. But it was healthy and organic, which made me feel good about eating it, considering it is stir fry after all.

I've always loved cooking, but since being in a relationship with Joshua, I've learned that I really love cooking with someone. It's makes the process much more fun, plus, Joshua does the dishes afterwards, so I'm totally cool with that. 

Maybe I'll have some stir fry for lunch. Anyone else thinking the same thing?

How To: Make Your Own Vanilla Extract

I read Elsie and Emma's post a while back on making your own vanilla extract, and it was something I kept in the back of my mind in case I wanted to try it someday. 

Well, someday came this summer, and just before heading back to school, my mom and I decided to make our own vanilla extract!  

It's easy as pie, and you only need to ingredients... 

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You will need: Cheap vodka (since you won't be drinking it), a whole vanilla bean, a measuring cup, and a funnel. 

Since our vanilla bean came in that handy little jar, we didn't need to find a bottle to "cook" it in. We got our vanilla bean from the Whole Foods Market. 

You'll need four ounces of vodka, and don't worry, the alcohol cooks out in the process! 

Measure out your vodka, split your vanilla bean down the middle (the long way) making sure it's still in one piece, and then put the vanilla bean back in the bottle of your choosing and add the vodka. Seal it up and let it sit for two months, and then you should have your very own, homemade vanilla extract! 

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This is what it looked like once it was in the vodka. Ours should be about done soaking by now, so I'll have to get a picture of it once I go back home to show you all what it looks like. 

Let me know if you decide to try it! 

Happy Hump Day, friends! 

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3 Foods I'm Dying to Try...

Happy Wednesday, folks! 

Before I get into today's post, I'd like to let you know that I am also guest posting today on Samantha's blog, It's All In The Details. So feel free to hope on over there and read my guide to partying

For some reason, I have been itching to try new food lately. I'm not sure if it's because I'm over American cuisine or if my taste buds have a yearning for greener pastures, but I feel as though I want to explore every foreign type of food there is! 

 

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1. Cajun Food. It's sad, but I've lived in Texas all my life and I've never tried Cajun food. Texas is right next to Louisiana and you'd think I would have had a chance to try it after 22 years but sadly, I haven't. I haven't actually spent any significant time in Louisiana other than to drive through it on my way to another state, so that could be a major factor. That point aside, I've always wanted to try gumbo! And I want to try the authentic stuff. Road trip to New Orleans, anyone? 

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2. Mediterranean food. Now, I think I've tried the college cafe's sad excuse for a gyro before, but it didn't sit too well with me. This is another type of food that I want to try authentically. Give me a Greek salad or some lamb kebabs, stat! 

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3. Thai food. I actually went to a Thai restaurant the other day, but I was too chicken to order something new so I just got fried rice with shrimp. But I would absolutely LOVE to try some Pad Thai! Or better yet, I'd love try my hand at making it, though it wouldn't be authentic that way.

When thinking of this list, it was actually difficult for me to come up with international foods that I haven't tried. I'm proud that I have actually tried a lot of international cuisine. The list includes Italian, Caribbean, Vietnamese, and Indian.

What international foods have you guys tried? What types of foods are you dying to try? I'd love to know! 

*All images were found via Google.* 

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Dulce de Leche Deliciousness!

I hope everyone is having a wonderful Wednesday! 

Today, I decided to post my first dessert recipe! It's also my first recipe post in this new space so I'm super stoked. 

My favorite dessert to eat by far is cake. I love it, I crave it often, and I'm pretty good at making it. I absolutely LOVE baking so when an opportunity arises for me to make a cake, I jump on it. Well, if you read yesterday's post, you'll know that my mom had a surprise birthday party recently, and I got to make the cupcakes for the occasion!

I decided on Dulce de Leche cupcakes and I'm going to share with you the recipe. 

The original recipe for the cake comes from Add A Pinch

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You will need: 3 cups flour- all purpose, 2 tsp baking powder, 1 tsp baking soda, pinch of salt, 1 cup (2 sticks) softened butter, 2 cups sugar, 4 eggs, 1 cup buttermilk, 2 tsp vanilla extract

Instructions: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Prepare 2 cupcake pans that each hold 12 cupcakes.  

 

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Next: Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt with a whisk in a large bowl. Set aside.
Cream butter in standing mixer until fluffy, then add sugar. Cream together for about 8 more minutes.
Add eggs, 1 at a time, and cream together after each.
Add flour mixture and buttermilk, alternately, beginning and ending with flour. Combine each addition of flour and then turn the mixer on high to add air to the batter. Add the vanilla extract and beat well. Turn the mixer on high once vanilla has been incorporated for about 10 seconds to lighten batter.

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Divide among cupcake pans evenly and bake for 25-30 minutes until set. 
Allow to cool completely before icing.

To make the Dulce de Leche buttercream, you'll need: 1 can sweetened condensed milk, 2 cups (4 sticks) unsalted butter, 3 1/2-4 cups confectioner's sugar.

First, you'll need to make the Dulce de Leche. It's best to do this overnight, since it takes 8 hours, but I woke up early in the morning and began the process. You'll need to remove the paper label from the can of sweetened condensed milk.
Then, put it in a crock pot and fill the crock pot with water until water covers the top of the can. You may want to place the can on a saucer if you don't want a ring at the bottom of your crock pot.
Next, turn the crock pot on low and set a timer for 8 hours.

You should end up with something that looks like this: 

 

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Now to make the buttercream! 

First, put the four sticks of butter into a large bowl and begin creaming them together. I used a hand mixer for this process.
Slowly add the confectioners sugar.
Then, add spoonfuls of the dulce de leche until you've reached the your desired caramel-y taste. 

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It should look something like the above picture when you're done. Finally, add the buttercream to your cooled cupcakes in any manner you choose and enjoy! 

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Above is my finished product. They were delicious!  

Let me know if any of you decide to try the recipe and if you do and you share it on your blog, please link back here.  

Linking up today with Kimmie

Happy baking, everyone! 

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Get In the Kitchen!

I am home from college for Christmas break, and because I have 3 weeks off before I have to be back, I thought these next few weeks would be the perfect time for me to try out a few recipes I’ve been eyeing.

alfredo

This Alfredo recipe from Emma of A Beautiful Mess looks delicious!

Lofthouse cookies

This recipe for Lofthouse style cookies is one I’ve been dying to try for a few months, especially since I love getting these cookies from the grocery store! Yum!

Eggnogarita

This drink recipe from the Food Network looks heavenly! I’m thinking about it for the New Year’s Eve toast.

I’m excited to get in the kitchen and see how these recipes turn out, and I’ll be sure to document every step of the way, as well as the end result!

Has anyone else been eyeing any recipes?

stillbeingmolly
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