the new brag

A lot can happen in a week (and a few days)…

I quit my too-far-away-from-home-and-$20-in-tolls-a-week desk job and am now a full-time unemployed writer. Yes! I can finally get back to what I do best: job hunting. I’ve become quite good at it the past couple years. I’ve had lots of practice. I may have found a part-time gig at a Whole Foods but… we’ll see. Wouldn’t that be too good to be true!?

Among other things… I plan to write more and cook more, especially now that my amazingly fit and fantastic personal trainer (who’s also helped me lose 10 pounds and tight glutes) just GAVE me her KitchenAid Mixer…!?!?! WHAT?!?!

I know, I know. INSANE. But, really, she insisted she never uses it and gets more use out of her Jack Lalane juicer than the monstrosity that is now boasting amazingness on my counter as I type. (on my new Mac might I add!) You’d think after quitting a job, I wouldn’t deserve all this wonderfulness.. but as they say, can’t have the sweet without the sour.

Enough gloating for one post.

My new best friend and trainer tells me I can’t eat 2 hours before I start training. I am ravenous and almost eating my empty Publix water bottle by the end of our session. I usually get in the car and can’t wait to get home and woof down a peanut butter and jelly sandwich (’cause thats what I’ve been craving after workouts). Last night I was hungry for beef… mushrooms… red wine…. all those hefty flavors and protein. I found an awesome little recipe from the recent Rachael Ray magazine and thought, hmmm…. I’ll make something like that! It was called “Steak with Red Wine Sauce” by food contest extraordinaire and multi-winner: Christine Riccitelli. Thanks for the inspiration Christine.

Post-Workout Skirt Steak with Red Wine Sauce & Spinach and Herb Couscous
1 lb. skirt steak
4 oz. white mushrooms, cleaned and sliced
1/2 cup red wine
about (as Rach would say, “eyeball it”) 1 cup chicken broth (or beef – I only had chicken)
1 shallot, minced
2 garlic cloves, minced
3 tablespoons flour
1 tablespoon dried rosemary
1 box herb couscous
1 hefty handful of baby spinach
s+p, to taste

Steak:
Drizzle about 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a large skillet and drop in the shallot. Heat the pan to medium and let shallots cook until tender. Add one clove of garlic and cook until fragrant. As the shallot and garlic are infusing the oil and rendering,cut the steak into bite size pieces (remember: against the grain!) and lightly season with salt and pepper. In a medium bowl combine the flour, rosemary and season heavily with salt and pepper and combine. Toss the steak in the flour and shake off excess flour before adding to the skillet with the shallot and garlic. Let the steak brown on one side before adding the chicken stock and red wine. Bring to a boil, put a lid on it and turn the heat back down to medium. Add the mushrooms and let simmer for 10 minutes.
Couscous:
When the steak is halfway done, prepare the couscous according to the directions. Add the remaining garlic and before serving, toss the spinach and just let it wilt slightly. (It should be bright green).


Quite lovely!

Easter dinner was a nightmare. I don’t even want to bother. Let’s just say I have tried and tried and I cannot make cheesy, hashbrown casserole. But I wanted something semi-sweet afterward to lift my spirits and threw together these little monsters:

Had some leftover croissants and semi-sweet chocolate chips and voila! 🙂 (I don’t pretend to be a culinary genius).

And finally, my husband is like totally amazing. He’s such a… I don’t even know. He’s more domesticated and neat and tidy than I am and loves to do little things to make me happy, never wanting in return. While I was washing dishes the other day he started putting together a little window-box herb garden right outside the kitchen window so I can pick fresh herbs while I’m preparing feasts 🙂 Complete with chives, parsley, basil and these flowers I don’t know the name of. He does.

enjoy your lovely Spring days! (and your meals)
C

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