Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Summer Salad Series Week 5

This weeks salad involves a little more work in the kitchen but it's worth it. 
For starters it is a stunning salad and delicious.

This recipe came from Southern Living.

First up was the marinade for the onions. I did this a day before I made the salad, this is amazing!!!! 

Cutting the watermelon into a thick round slice wasn't as easy as I imagined but I eventually got it! 

Dressing ingredients, this is a great dressing. It will be a staple around our house from now on. 

 Toss together the greens, feta, onions; drizzle on some dressing and then top with pepitas!!

There you have it! Watermelon Steak Salad.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

mirror mirror on the wall

Our camp bridal room was in need of a full length mirror. Lucky for me there was an old bathroom mirror hanging around camp. I got some pine boards from home depot, cut and stained them and voila...a custom mirror. 
Staining wood is my new favorite DIY project. I can't wait to stain more wood, next up will be a headboard. 
My original plan was to use a vinegar and steel wool stain which didn't work out, lets say I could have posted some "nailed it" pictures of just how horrible it was. 


I'm so happy with the results. It's just what we needed to fill that corner.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Summer Salads Week 4

This week I tried something I found in Guy Fieris Diners Dives and Drivin's cookbook.
 Asian Slaw with Spicy Thai Vinegarette .
Here are a few adjustments I made to make it a little easier. I used broccoli slaw instead of all the cabbages and olive oil instead of peanut oil.
For leftovers the second day I added tuna, super healthy and delicious. 

For the salad you will need:

1 cup finely shredded green cabbage
3 cups finely shredded red cabbage
3 cups finely shredded napa cabbage 
1/2 cup green onion, sliced 
1/4 cup red bell pepper chopped small 
2 cups carrots, shredded 
salt and pepper 

Spicy Thai Vinaigrette (use 1 cup)
1/3 cup rice wine vinegar
2 tsp fresh lime juice (to taste)
2 -3 tbsp chili-garlic sauce
1 1/2 tsp honey
1 tsp minced fresh ginger, peeled
1 tsp minced garlic
1 tbsp fresh basil, chopped
1 tbsp fresh mint leaves, chopped
1 tbsp fresh cilantro leaves, chopped
1/4 tsp black pepper
1 1/2 tsp toasted sesame seeds
1/2 tsp ground coriander
1 tbsp toasted sesame oil

salt to taste 
1/2 cup peanut oil (or corn oil)


Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Summer Reading List

One of my goals this year was to read more so I thought by posting a summer reading list it would help me stay encouraged to keep reading. I am guilty of starting books and never finishing them. I am determined to stop doing that, so here it is my summer reading list!! 


The Kitchen House: This was recommended by one of my favorite bloggers Emily over at Jones Design Company . That is pretty much all I am going on. Plus the explanation sounds really interesting. 

Jane Eyre: I picked this up for a quarter at a garage sale and have always wanted to read it. For that price how could I pass it up. I finished it and loved every second. It was a bit of a challenge because of the old fashioned language but I made it through...ha 

Battlefield of the Mind: This is my first Joyce Meyer book and I am really loving it. She is honest, to the point and talks about her own personal experiences, a powerful read for anyone. 

Start: A friend of mine is reading this she heard about it on Dave Ramsey's radio show so I know it is going to be great. The cover says it all "Punch fear in the face, escape average, do work that matters. 

Pretense: I have read a few Lori Wick books before and I found this book at the same garage sale I got Jane Eyre. It's about two sisters, forgiveness and the bonds of family. Sounds like the perfect makings of a Christian fiction novel :) 

Pride & Prejudice: Another classic that I can't remember the last time I read probably in high school. There is something about these classics I can't get enough of. 

Anonymous: This book is amazing!! I started it awhile ago and put it down because it was a little more than I could handle at the moment. I am determined to finish it this summer. Here is the premise of the book:
We all experience times of hiddenness, when our potential is unseen and our abilities unapplauded. This book redeems those times by reminding us that though we often want to rush through these anonymous seasons of the soul, they hold enormous power to cultivate character traits that cannot be developed any other way!

There you have it my summer reading list. What are you reading this summer? 

xo Ash 

Friday, July 11, 2014

Summer Salads Week 3

The Pioneer Woman's 

This is not a recipe that I would normally make because I don't normally eat bacon. Although lately there has been something about bacon...ahhhh bacon. Since I love the Pioneer Woman I thought I would try her take on this classic salad.

Check out this hilarious clip from one of our favorite comedians Jim Gaffigan, all about bacon.


Here's what you'll need: 
3 Whole Eggs 
7 slices thick-cut peppered bacon
1 small whole red onion
1 package white button mushrooms
3 tbsp red wine vinegar 
2 tsp sugar 
1/2 tsp dijon mustard 
dash of salt 
8 ounces baby spinach 

Hard boil your eggs.
Fry the bacon until crispy.
Drain the fat into a bowl and reserve. 
Slice the red onion very thing and add to the skillet.
Cook slowly until onions are caramelized.
Remove and set aside.
Slice mushrooms and add to same skillet.
Cook until caramelized and brown 
Chop the bacon. Peel and slice the eggs. 
Make the hot bacon dressing.
Add 3 tbsp of bacon fat, vinegar, sugar, dijon and salt to a small saucepan or low heat.
Whisk together and heat until bubbly. 
Add the spinach to a large bowl. 
Arrange onions, mushrooms and bacon on top.
Pour the hot dressing over the top toss to combine.
Arrange the eggs over the top and serve. 

Here's a few things I would do differently next time: 
I would not use any bacon fat for the dressing. 
I would use some olive oil or avocado oil in it's place
I would leave the onions raw.
Other than that the flavor is awesome and the salad delicious.

How are you liking the salad recipes? 
Any suggestions on what I could make next? 


Summer Salad Week 2

This weeks salad can be served warm or cold.
Red Potato & Green Bean Salad 

2 pounds red potatoes 
6-8 ounces of green beans 
1/4 cup olive oil 
4 tsp whole grain mustard 
1 tbsp honey 
2-3 tbsp red wine vinegar 
-Season to your liking-



Thursday, July 10, 2014

Summer Salad Series Week 1

Every summer I am always on the hunt for new healthy salad recipes. I thought it would be fun to share what I'm cooking up in the kitchen.

I will post a new salad each week for the rest of the summer.
Lately I have been obsessed with lime and cilantro combinations. There are two recipes here. I have made both and it's so hard to narrow down my favorite. Try them out and let me know which one you like the best. 

Sorry I didn't take pictures of mine...I get so excited to eat I forget :) 

This is so good!!!! The mix of cayenne pepper and a small amount of sweetener is amazing!! Note I used Sucanat in place of sugar. 


Next up is a similar salad. There are more veggies and more work but its worth it. I felt like I was chopping cilantro for a year. 

Both websites have such wonderful and healthy recipes on them. 
Until the next salad!