January 27, 2015

Low Carb BLT Lettucewich Lettuce Wrap with Sriracha Mayo


As I get closer to having baby Stella and my belly grows bigger and bigger, I am trying to be more aware of what I am eating. Lt me tell you it's not easy for a foodie like me to cut out sweets and carbs but it sure does help when you are big and preggers! Sandwiches are a fave in my house so I came up with this BLT Lettucewich which is simply a BLT sub sandwiched between two pieces of crisp lettuce instead of bread. Surprisingly, I didn't even miss the bread! It was juicy and savory and filled me up and it was Low Carb too! I jazzed mine up by adding sliced avocado and spicy Sriracha mayo and served it with a side of roasted veggies. 

Ingredients: 

Makes 2 sub lettucewiches
  • 6 slices thick cut bacon
  • 4 large Romaine lettuce leaves
  • 1 tomato, sliced
  • 1 avocado, peeled and sliced
  • 2 tbsp Mayo (I recommend Duke's)
  • 1 tbsp Sriracha (or to taste)
  • salt/black pepper, to taste

Directions:

  1. I like to cook my bacon in the oven at 350 degrees for about 20 minutes. I place the strips on a rack set on top of an aluminum foil lined baking sheet. This way they are not greasy and get nice and crisp. Remove from oven and let cool.
  2. Mix together mayo and Sriracha in a bowl and spread on insides of lettuce leaves.
  3. Lay 3 slices bacon on a piece of lettuce then top with tomato and avocado slices. 
  4. Season with salt and pepper and top with other lettuce leaf. Now you have a BLT Lettucewich!
  5. Repeat with remaining lettuce and toppings. 

Good quality thick cut bacon is key for a tasty BLT!
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place the bacon strips on a rack set on top of an aluminum foil lined baking sheet. Bake for about 20 minutes or until crisp. 
Remove from oven and let cool.
Wash four pieces of large Romaine lettuce leaves.
Mix together mayo and Sriracha in a small bowl.
 I do 2 parts mayo to one part Sriracha.
Spread generously onto lettuce leaves.
Peel and slice up your toppings. We used juicy tomato and ripe avocado.
 Onion slices are also delish!
Add your thick cut bacon to the lettuce.
Then add your tomato and avocado and salt and pepper.
Truth be told I am not a fan of tomatoes {except fried green tomatoes, of course!} so I just had lots of avocado with my bacon and lettuce. My BLA was just as tasty!
Add the top lettuce leaf and you have got yourself one tasty BLT Lettucewich!

January 25, 2015

Macaroni Grill Copycat Rosemary Bread and Roasted Garlic baked in the Crock-Pot

Being Italian {and just being a foodie in general} I love carbs! Pasta, potatoes, and especially bread!
I have made rolls and biscuits before but surprisingly I have never made a loaf of bread. When I came across this recipe for fresh baked bread in the Crock-pot {my very favorite kitchen appliance} I knew I had to try it! I love fix it and forget it Crock-pot cooking! 
This Rosemary Olive Oil Bread reminds me of the hearty bread served at Macaroni Grill. Crispy on the outside and soft and warm on the inside. Even better I made some roasted garlic to serve with it!
Safe to say this bread was a hit in our house and was devoured in one sitting! 
Hope you enjoy as much as we did.

Ingredients: 

For bread:

  • 3½ cups all purpose flour
  • 1 packet dry active yeast (2¼ teaspoons)
  • 1¼ cups warm water
  • ¼ cup fresh rosemary, chopped
  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt

For roasted garlic:
  • one head of garlic
  • olive oil

Directions: 

  1. In a large bowl, mix together the water, yeast, and sugar. Let sit 10 minutes. The mixture should become bubbly.
  2. Stir in half of the salt (1/2 teaspoon), half of the rosemary (2 tablespoons), the 3 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil, and all of the flour. Mix until fully combined. Work it together with your hands, if necessary.
  3. Lightly grease a large bowl and place the dough in. Cover it with a kitchen towel and leave the dough in a warm, draft-free area. Let it sit and rise for 1 hour.
  4. Remove the dough from the bowl and gently roll it into a ball on a floured surface. Let it sit for another 20 minutes.
  5. Set the crock pot to high. Line the crock pot with two pieces of parchment paper, leaving at least 2 inches hanging out of each side of the crock pot. Place the dough in the crock pot and sprinkle it with the remaining salt and rosemary.
  6. Drape paper towels over the top of the crock pot and then place the lid on. This should capture any moisture that would sit on the lid and prevent it from dripping back onto your bread.
  7. Cook the bread for 2 hours, and remove from the crock pot. It will most likely still be a bit pale on the outside. It tastes great this way, but I like to put mine on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and put it under the broiler for a quick 3 - 5 minutes to get a crunchier, darker crust.
  8. Let cool before slicing. Serve with extra olive oil drizzled on top. 
  9. I serve with roasted garlic (recipe below) and flavored oil for dipping. 


For the roasted garlic:
  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. 
  2. Slice the top off your head of garlic and peel any loose papery skin off the garlic. 
  3. Place each head of garlic on a small piece of foil and drizzle a teaspoon or so of olive oil over the top. 
  4. Wrap in foil and set it on the center rack in the oven. 
  5. Roast until the head of garlic is soft and golden brown, about 40 minutes. Too see if it's done poke with a fork to test if the garlic is soft.  
  6. Carefully remove from the oven and let cool. Unwrap and use your fingers to squeeze the roasted garlic out of the clove or use a fork the pull out the garlic from the cloves.
  7. Spread on warm bread and enjoy!
Mix together yeast and sugar in a bowl. 
Add water and let sit for 10 minutes. 
The mixture should rise and become bubbly.
Fresh rosemary smells and tastes amazing in this recipe.
Stir in half of the salt (1/2 teaspoon), half of the rosemary (2 tablespoons), 3 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil, and all of the flour. 
 
Mix until fully combined. I use a rubber spatula at first then mix with my hands.
Lightly grease a large bowl and place the dough in. Cover it with a kitchen towel and leave the dough in a warm, draft-free area (I place on my stove with the oven on low heat). 
Let it sit and rise for 1 hour.
Remove the dough from the bowl and gently roll it into a ball on a floured surface. 
Let it sit for another 20 minutes.
Set the crock pot to high. Line the crock pot with two pieces of parchment paper, leaving at least 2 inches hanging out of each side of the crock pot. Place the dough in the crock pot and sprinkle it with the remaining salt and rosemary.
Drape paper towels over the top of the crock pot and then place the lid on. This should capture any moisture that would sit on the lid and prevent it from dripping back onto your bread.
Cook the bread for 2 hours, and remove from the crock pot. 
Meanwhile I roasted a large head of garlic drizzled with olive oil in the 
oven at 400 degrees for 40 minutes. 
Roasted garlic makes the best spread for homemade bread!
What goes best with fresh baked bread? Homemade soup!
I made this recipe for Crock-pot Chicken Noodle Soup. 
Place on a lined baking sheet, brush with a little olive oil, and put it under the broiler
 for a quick 3 - 5 minutes to get a crunchier, darker crust.

Let cool before slicing. 
 
Serve with extra olive oil drizzled on top.

I like to serve with a dipping bowl filled with flavored olive oil 
and fresh roasted garlic for spreading.
Homemade soup and fresh baked bread with roasted garlic.
Now that's a tasty winter meal!
Throw back to the last time I ate at Macaroni Grill! I was preggers with Ava and visiting my family and friends in Florida. Here I am after a tasty lunch with my friend Connie. You bet we enjoyed some Macaroni Grill Rosemary Bread! So glad I can make it at home now too! 

January 24, 2015

Gift Ideas from Dylan's Candy Bar and a Valentine's Giveaway

I have a mouthwatering treat to share with y'all today!
 How about a Valentine's Candy Giveaway from Dylan's Candy Bar?!
Scroll down to the bottom of this post to enter to win!
Let me take a minute to talk candy. I have a serious sweet tooth and I love all the sweet treats this time of year. Last year, I came across Dylan's Candy Bar, which has a website and numerous retail stores, all dreamed up by Dylan Lauren {Ralph's daughter!}. Naturally, I checked out her decadent delights online and I couldn't look away! The colors, the tasty concoctions, the chocolate! I love that even though I am not near one of her retail stores {but when I am you better bet I will check it out!} I can still browse and order all her products on her site.
Speaking of her website- Check.It.Out.
Not only is it fun and colorful but oh my gosh everything looks delish! 
And it's not just candy.{Even though there is enough candy to feed an entire Army. For years. Through the zombie apocalypse.} She has stationary, beauty products, even clothing available- all candy themed of course! 
My lips would never be dry again if I had this Brownie Batter Lip Balm
I am dying over these adorable fleece Candy Explosion PJ Pants
I love the combo of sweet and salty. 
These varieties of Chocolate Popcorn are calling my name! 

Another thing Dylan's Candy Bar has are recipes featuring some of their products.
Here are a few of my faves!
One Pumpkin Cheesecake to Rule Them All 
featuring the 
Honey Graham Cracker Spread.
Holiday Cookie Butter Pancakes

featuring
 Honey Graham Cracker Spread,
Chocolate Cookies & Cream Spread, and
 Vanilla Snickerdoodle Spread.

 Now let's get back to that Valentine's Giveaway I mentioned!
Check out Dylan's Candy Bar's Valentine's Day Page filled with goodies for you and your sweet.
We have teamed up with the sweet {literally} people at Dylan's Candy Bar and we are giving away a product of your choice {up to $40} from this page! 

Here are some of my faves:
Mini Fondue Kit 
Signature Valentine's Day Tackle Box
P-U! Love Stinks Gift Set

Sweetheart Valentine's Day Gift Set

Disclosure: This is a paid post written by me. All opinions are mine.
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