I was a bit delayed on Mr. J’s August snack of the month. August’s theme was #throwback so I recreated Dunkaroos! I don’t remember ever seeing them at my house growing up. Essentially it was a cookie dipped into frosting so I doubt they are worse than another cookie with frosting but alas, they are no more…except for Pinterest. It is very addicting. The cake mix makes it.
1/2 box funfetti cake mix
1 cup Greek vanilla yogurt
2 cups cool whip
Mix together the funfetti, yogurt, and cool whip.
Mix and serve with animal crackers for dipping.
Add a few more sprinkles serve and enjoy!
I served these as single dipper portions…much like the 90s treat? Why, yes! I gave Mr. J I Owe Yous with themes for his birthday to get a year of Snacks/Treats.
June: hot & cold (Ice cream topping basket)
July: shareable (loaded waffle fries)
Aug: throwback (this Dunkaroo dip!)
Tomatoes were sort of a bust this year…we had a culprit nabbing them and the latest ones aren’t getting ripe. Herbs on the other hand…are going like GANG-BUSTERS. I wanted to highlight a few so they became part of my marinade. We grilled the chicken and I served it over some pretty basic orzo…like butter/tomatoes/basil/salt & pepper. The babe loved both the “chick-ken” and was thrilled to have his own bowl of orzo. It kind of was all over him, but Orzo-man was worth it.
I kept the yogurt-ness going with a tzatiki-like sauce to go with it. I don’t have any dill and I wasn’t about to buy more fresh herbs right now so I improvised with mint & oregano. Yay for all. the. herbs. Let’s count ‘em: basil, oregano, mint, & lemon thyme.
6 oz plain Greek yogurt
2 tablespoons Greek or Italian Dressing
2 tablespoons milk
2 tablespoons each: oregano & thyme
5-6 boneless, skinless chicken thighs
1 tablespoon each: mint & basil
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon garlic
1/4 cucumber, with the seeds removed, diced or shredded
1/2 pound of orzo
1 tomato, chopped
1 teaspoon butter
Mix together the 3/4 of the yogurt, milk, oregano, thyme, and add the chicken to marinade for at least 30 minutes. Mine marinated for ~2.5 hours.
Meanwhile, mix together the cucumber, yogurt, mint, oregano, lemon juice, and garlic. Then refrigerate until serving.
Grill the chicken until cooked through.
While the chicken is cooking, boil water for the orzo and cook according to the package (probably 8-10 minutes).
Toss together the orzo, butter, tomato and once it cools a bit, add the basil.
Serve the chicken over a bed of orzo, topped with the cucumber yogurt sauce.
Let’s chat about all the summer foods & flavors we still need to eat:
I definitely need more corn on the cob, plus cooking it and cutting it off the cob (or freezing it off the cob) are great options too. This Heirloom Tomato & Corn Tart is soooo good.
Plus, watching this guy with an ear of corn cracks me up:
Obviously I need more tomatoes: Tomato sandwiches for B, L, D. I loved this ricotta pie with tomato though it seems sacrilegious to cook beautiful tomatoes.
Lobster is a must, I haven’t had any yet but will ASAP
I also need to make some summery cocktails. I have a few in mind…possibly featuring ice tea or lemonade. We’ll see.
I got my s’mores fix last weekend, but there’s no such thing as too many s’mores. I’m sure I will keep featuring the bounty of herbs we’re growing too. Mr. J grills pretty much year-round so that’s not necessarily a must-do. Labor day doesn’t quite mark the end of summer for me since the kiddo’s routine is the same all year but I do look forward to fall.
What’s left on your summery food bucket list?
August feels a bit like a blur. It was too hot for me but our beach vacation was fantastic and I really appreciated having a full week off…something I haven’t done in 1.5 years! I didn’t cook much but I was really happy to whip up quick meals meaning easy family evenings without stress. That also means not as much to blog but throwing something onto the grill and adding an easy side seems like a no-brainer. I cooked a bit this weekend to make up for it (get ready for a really fun burger)!
My fav food I made this month was a Shrimp Scampi Flatbread
I jumped on board the train for overnight oats with a blueberry sauce and I was a fan! I’m sure I’ll make another kind.
For a brunch party I made these biscuit cups with sausage gravy. Adorable and perfectly portioned!
The Little One:
He loved the beach! It was really fun and just. so. easy. I loooove this tiny town we go to because the beach is huuuuge and being able to walk to the beach allows us to come and go. We pretty much went in the morning, popped back to the cottage for lunch & naps and then back to the beach until dinner. After the little one was asleep, it was time for Olympic viewings and ice cream runs. The best.
He’s been eating up a storm and loving to be outside, especially on the swing set. He loves having his own bowl and spoon. He got his very own ice cream cone on vacation and he ate corn on the cob. So fun! He’s talking even more.
This Year’s Goals:
The Year of the: Seasonal Decor: ehh, I missed this month
do something a different way: no, I probably didn’t
drink more water: I need to do better outside of work, at my desk I do well.
make more interesting side dishes: these Prosciutto Wrapped Asparagus were fun
cook more soups & sauces: Does jazzed up gravy fit?
watch more movies: none this month it was all Olympics, all the time.
make working out a higher priority: I ran a 5K! That was HUGE for me.
I didn’t really mean to disappear but ohh well. It happens. I had visions of returning from vacation, making one quick thing the weekend after vacay which I’d blog. It just didn’t happen.
Then, I did make something to blog the other night but it wasn’t amazing and it “crisped” too much in the oven so it really wasn’t photogenic. There goes the 2nd thing I had planned for the blog this week! It was a roasted tomato/basil/mozzarella/garlic/truffle oil calzone. Tasty, but not so pretty.
In other news, the beach vacay was so wonderful. The Little One was so happy in the sand, being able to walk right into the ocean, and finding hermit crabs. He thought the crabs were turtles (which is our fav word he says) so “turt-tle” they were. The little one got his very own ice cream cone for the first time and ate corn on the cob. We ate nightly ice cream and watched a lot of Olympics…complete with Olympic bingo I found!
I didn’t cook anything during vacation but brought some lunch things like Mexican Street Corn & quesadilla stuff as well as Sesame Peanut Noodles. Both were easy to prep the sauce in advance and bring the rest to just assemble onsite. I like them as leftovers too.
Then, we got back Friday evening and had the whole weekend at home which totally got us back into the normal groove before returning to work/daycare. I’ll say, how much rest do you need when you’re 1.5 years old and returning to days of water-play, snacktimes, naps, and stories?
Saturday morning I ran a 5K. Cra-zy. I wasn’t sure I’d be ready but I did and I’m so proud of myself. It was hot, I was definitely struggling, but I ran the whole time and wasn’t last…my two goals! 10am mid-August is hottt. My ap said 3.6 miles but whatev. Seeing Mr. J and the little one by the end got me there. I have more work to do before attempting another but it was good.
Now I’m on a mission to eat all the summer things before labor day. Go!
I’m jumping on board the over-night oats bandwagon- it might have been pulling out of the station but I caught it just in time. I saw some tips to make better overnight oats and was thinking I should give them a go. Who doesn’t need a fool-proof healthy breakfast? Also, this is all about the toppings which I can totally get on board with- despite never getting jazzed about oatmeal.
It has to be Old Fashioned Oats and you need 2x the liquid as the oats. I made 2 servings to see how it was. Spoiler: loved it. I foresee all the possibilities. I also might mix up some mini ones to be dessert for when I’m craving that sweet-treat.
1 cup old fashioned oats
2 teaspoons flax seeds (optional)
1 teaspoon honey
1 teaspoon brown sugar
1 cup yogurt
1 cup coconut almond milk (or any milk you like)
1 cup blueberries (+more for topping)
2 tablespoons honey
1 teaspoon cornstarch
Toppings: a few blueberries, chopped fresh pineapple, coconut, nuts, or whatever you like.
Mix together the oats, flax seeds, honey, brown sugar, yogurt, almond milk, and divide into 2 bowls/jars/containers and cover.
Let sit overnight.
In a small saucepan, cook blueberries, honey, and cornstarch over medium low heat for 5-10 minutes. Cool and store until serving.
Top with blueberry sauce, blueberries, pineapple & enjoy!
I loved these! I think 2 was a good start. I don’t always want a million servings to eat the same thing every day. I was very into the alternating textures of the oats vs the blueberry sauce vs the fresh blueberries vs the acidic pineapple. I think my next one might be more nut/toasted coconut/nutella.
I know mason jars are cute, but bowls or containers seem way easier to eat out of. I also fully endorse mixing it all up and then letting it sit. The mason jar & the layers would be more instagram-able but the ratio and texture is better when mixed.
See ya after vacay!
Every veggie can benefit from some prosciutto! I loved the hands-off-ness of this side for a fresh & salty side. They’re just so easy and could easily pop onto the grill. I baked them since they were going with some seared scallops which were cooking inside anyway.
Asparagus spears (I doubled them per prosciutto slice)
Trim the ends of the asparagus and preheat the oven to 375-degrees.
Wrap the asparagus in prosciutto at an angle. (I doubled the asparagus per prosciutto slice).
Bring the balsamic to a low boil in a small pan for about 5-8 minutes until it gets thicker.
Bake for 15 minutes, turning halfway. Cook until the asparagus gets tender and the prosciutto crisps.
Remove the balsamic from the heat and allow to cool to room temp where it will become syrupy.
Drizzle with balsamic reduction & enjoy!
It isn’t really asparagus season but I was wanting this and it was great. The little one gobbled some and had scallops for the first time!
There are so many breakfasts to share with you! This one is a few weeks old but I was trying to spread them out (there’s still another to post!)! For Dad’s bday I made sausage gravy with biscuit cups. They were so fun and there’s very little cooking involved! I made mini ones to join the many other brunch items being served. They were tasty and just so cute! Make the biscuits in advance and the sausage can be made ahead too!
Ingredients: Makes 20 mini biscuit cups
1 package of 10 biscuit Juniors
1 package of breakfast sausage, with the casing removed
1 package country gravy
(milk according to the gravy)
1 cup coffee
Preheat the oven to 350-degrees. Flip a mini muffin tin upside down and spray with non-stick spray.
Pop the biscuits open and carefully divide each in half. Lay each half of a raw biscuit onto an inverted muffin well and skip every-other one so they don’t run together.
Bake for 4-5 minutes in two batches.
Pan fry the sausage. Cook through and drain the grease.
Prepare the gravy according to the package in the pan from the sausage. Reduce the milk called for by 1/4 and substitute with coffee. Add in lots of cracked black pepper then the sausage.
Serve and enjoy!
They were really cute! I liked the gravy to get spiced up a bit since I didn’t make it from scratch. Keep an eye on those biscuits! As halfsies they cook quickly. They’d work well with jumbo ones on a regular size muffin pan too.
I was home to make lunch and was thinking about Shrimp Scampi but it seemed a bit much for lunch so I made it into a flatbread with a scampi-like sauce. I loved it and it was the perfect fit for a surprisingly quick lunch with the flavors without messing with dough or even boiling water. Cooking the shrimp and making the sauce in that same pan makes for a lot of flavor and was just so easy.
1 garlic naan
2 tablespoons butter
1/4 cup clam juice
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon dijon mustard
1 teaspoon garlic
cracked black pepper & salt
1 teaspoon chopped chives
~2 tablespoons grated Parmesan
1 teaspoon thyme
Toast the flatbread.
In a skillet over medium heat, melt the butter and sprinkle with salt & pepper. Cook and flip once and cook for a few minutes per side.
Remove the shrimp and add in the clam juice, lemon juice, mustard, & garlic.
Whisk and bring to a low simmer. Add in more black pepper and chives.
Spread the sauce onto the naan and top with Parmesan and shrimp.
Sprinkle with the thyme and return to the oven for another few minutes.
The sauce was veryyy flavorful. The clam juice, lemon juice, dijon, and garlic are fo-real. For pasta I’d probably save a bit of the starchy water to thin it out a little. I was so glad I made this one & got the flavor I was thinking about. It was easy to make a single serving and was a great reminder how quickly some classic flavors can take shape.