Category Archives: Grilling

10 Steps to make a Kick-A$@ Pulled Pork on the Smoker

Step-By-Step Instructions on making Pulled Pork on the Smoker

I realize that it’s August 31st, I understand that kids are going back to school and September is literally a day away but I am NOT ready to say goodbye to summer. I’m not ready to say goodbye to beaches and evening walks and Sunday jazz nights and the sound of the ocean breeze blowing the green leaves on the trees.  I’m in denial that Autumn is on it’s way so I figured I would focus on some BBQ today so we can spend a little more time soaking in the joys of summer.

Our friend Blake is the master of all masters at smoking meat and since he’s the expert, I reached out to him to see if he would walk me through his process so I could see how he makes these glorious creations AND so I could share it with all of you. They currently live over an hour away but they’re moving to the next town over in just a month so I’m going to make him smoke meat for us ALL THE TIME now, Blake, you better get your wood pile stocked up!

Seriously though, this is some of the best pulled pork I’ve had, I’ve been to all sorts of fancy bbq places throughout the country and I realize people are very protective an specific about their bbq but Blake makes some killer BBQ.

So today, we’re going to take you through step-by-step foolproof instructions on making a kick a$# pulled pork on a smoker in 10 EASY STEPS. I supplied the Stubbs BBQ and Blake did all the hard work. Here we go!…

Step-By-Step Instructions on making Pulled Pork on the Smoker

STEP 1 – we’re going to start the day before we smoke it with a nice 8lb bone-in pork butt.  You can see it has nice marbling and fat throughout to keep it moist & juicy.

Step-By-Step Instructions on making Pulled Pork on the Smoker

STEP 2 – Inject a marinade into the pork butt.  We used Stubbs Chipotle Butter, if you don’t have that, you can use a mixture of Apple Juice, Apple Cider Vinegar & Salt.

Step-By-Step Instructions on making Pulled Pork on the Smoker

STEP 3 – After you have injected it, cover it with foil and put it into the fridge to sit overnight.

Step-By-Step Instructions on making Pulled Pork on the Smoker

STEP 4 – The day of smoking: Take the pork butt out of the fridge, drain the marinade that is sitting in the container and apply the rub.  Let is settle in (sweat) for about 30 minutes. You can use Stubbs BBQ rub which I love or you can use your favorite mixture of sweet & savory spices.

Step-By-Step Instructions on making Pulled Pork on the Smoker

STEP 5 – Early in the morning, fire up some charcoal. Blake started his around 7AM.

Step-By-Step Instructions on making Pulled Pork on the Smoker

This is the beauteous smoker that Blake uses for his meat.

Step-By-Step Instructions on making Pulled Pork on the Smoker

STEP 6 – Place the charcoal & wood in the smoker along with the pork butt. Blake used Hickory, Apple & Cherry Wood and smoked it for about 6 hours.

Step-By-Step Instructions on making Pulled Pork on the Smoker

This is what the meat will look like after about 4 hours on the smoker. Continue to spritz with apple juice throughout the process for moisture.

Step-By-Step Instructions on making Pulled Pork on the Smoker

STEP 7 – After about 6 hours on the pit, apply the 2nd injection to provide flavor and moisture.

Step-By-Step Instructions on making Pulled Pork on the Smoker

STEP 8 – After you have injected the pork, wrap it in foil and place in the oven at 225 F for about 2 hours.

Step-By-Step Instructions on making Pulled Pork on the Smoker

STEP 9 – Now it’s time to pull the pork! Using forks or prongs or a knife, pull pork apart until shredded and in smaller pieces.

Step-By-Step Instructions on making Pulled Pork on the Smoker

Step-By-Step Instructions on making Pulled Pork on the Smoker

Step-By-Step Instructions on making Pulled Pork on the Smoker

STEP 10 – Pour on the BBQ Sauce! We used Stubbs Sticky Sweet.

STEP 10.1 – Invite all your friends over and watch them devour every last piece.

Thank you Pitmaster Blake for sharing your secrets with us and to Stubbs for providing the delicious sauces, rubs & marinades.

If you need me, I’ll be on the beach eating bbq, I don’t care what you say, it’s still summer…

 

The Ultimate Loaded Potato Salad

The Ultimate Loaded Potato Salad

Hope you all had a fantastic 4th of July weekend!  I was really hoping to share this one with you before the holiday so you could whip some up for your weekend bbq’s but life got in the way and I had to hog this potato salad all to myself for a few days longer.  I made this for a BBQ last weekend and it was so good that I made up another batch this weekend when we had a party on Saturday.  I decided to do an ultimate classic summer bbq, we served pulled pork, cole slaw, potato salad, caprese salad, watermelon & feta salad and corn on the cob.  Everyone gobbled it up!

The Ultimate Loaded Potato Salad

I’ve made my fair share of potato salads in the past and I make a pretty good one but THIS ONE. I can’t even. It’s seriously the best one I’ve ever made, I may never make another potato salad again.  It’s not healthy, its not even trying to be healthy, its just potato salad in all its glory goodness.

The Ultimate Loaded Potato Salad

When Tom lived in the city, we used to walk to this little bagel shop called Bagel Rising every weekend morning to get our breakfast/lunch (back when we used to do something called sleep-in).  The bagels were good and the sandwiches were awesome but the potato salad! Holy yum.  After tasting that the first time, I decided to give it a try and see if I could replicate it.  I wasn’t ever able to make it taste exactly like their magic recipe but after this one, I’ll never try again, I think it might be better.  This potato salad is the potato salad of all potato salads, if you make it, you may have people bowing down to you hailing you a god sent from the heavens.

The Ultimate Loaded Potato Salad

Ok, I’ll stop gushing now, I guess you get it. Its good. Make it. Now.

 

WHAT MAKES ME HAPPY:

Happy babies.

BabyCharlie

Some of our best friends had their baby boy last week and he’s SO friggin cute.  It never gets old watching a baby sleep, they always look so peaceful and happy!

(Hope you guys don’t mind me exploiting your baby on here but he better get used it, this kid is gonna be famous some day).

The Ultimate Loaded Potato Salad

Allergy Egg
Meal type Side Dish
Misc Serve Cold

Ingredients

  • 2.5lb yukon gold potatoes (washed & finely diced)
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 2 Medium carrots (peeled & roughly cut)
  • 4 scallions (trimmed)
  • 1 1/4 cup mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons pickle juice
  • 1/4 cup diced pickles
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon dijon mustard
  • 4-6 slices uncooked bacon

Directions

1. Preheat oven to 425 F. Place bacon slices on a baking pan and bake until crispy (about 10-15 minutes).
2. Remove to a paper towel lined plate and set aside (reserve a tablespoon of drippings for the dressing).
3. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add potatoes and cook until tender (about 10-15 minutes). When potatoes can be pierced easily with fork, drain into a colander in the sink and toss with apple cider vinegar. Let steam for about 10 minutes.
4. Meanwhile, in a food processor combine carrots, 2 scallions, mayonnaise, pickle juice, pickles, sugar, salt, mustard & a tablespoon of bacon drippings.
5. When potatoes have cooled, transfer to a large bowl. Dice remaining 2 scallions and the bacon and toss with the potatoes. Pour the dressing over the salad and toss to coat well (you may have extra dressing, just use what you need).
6. Cool in the refrigerator before serving.

 

Chicken Satay Marinade

Easy Chicken Satay Marinade

Hey!!!  I don’t have too much time to chat because its been a busy week but I wanted to stop in and share one of my favorite go-to marinades for summer grilling season.  You know that delicious, melt-in-your-mouth chicken or beef you get at Thai restaurants with the awesome peanut dipping sauce?  Well this is it!!  This recipe is from my dad and I made sure I wrote it down when I started cooking on my own.  I’m actually surprised I haven’t shared it with you yet, I searched the blog convinced that I must have but lo and behold! I’ve been holding out on you!

Easy Chicken Satay Marinade

Simply marinate the chicken (or beef) in the marinade for a few hours or overnight and then grill it up and you’ve got yourself some OH SO TASTY chicken.  Its so good you don’t even need the peanut sauce but obviously everything is always better with a little peanut sauce.

Easy Chicken Satay Marinade

The best part about this marinade?  I almost always have the ingredients on-hand.  All you need is fish sauce, brown sugar, oil, curry powder & lemon juice.  Easy peasy!  I was actually out of lemons when I made this last so I used a little powdered lemon with water and a splash of rice vinegar to replace it and it was still awesome.

Easy Chicken Satay Marinade

You can use chicken breast or thighs but I find that thighs are much better for grilling, they stay really moist and have a great flavor.

Hope this becomes a regular in your house too! Enjoy!

 

WHAT MAKES ME HAPPY:

The “Rude” station on Pandora.

PandoraRudeRadio

If you’ve heard that new song on the radio called “Rude” it is seriously jammable (is that a word??, it is now)!  I tried out a Pandora station using that song and it is seriously the best summer music EVA!  Every song makes you want to be in a convertible with the top down jamming out at sunset.  I’m discovering all sorts of new artists through it as well as hearing classics from Bob Marley & Sublime and few throwbacks that bring me back to high school.  Seriously, check it out! #summerlovin

Chicken Satay Marinade

Ingredients

  • 3 tablespoons fish sauce
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon curry powder
  • 1 tablespoon oil
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice

Directions

1. Whisk all of the ingredients together until combined well.
2. Pour into a sealed plastic bag with chicken breasts, thighs or beef.
3. Marinate in the refrigerator for a few hours or overnight.
4. Grill until cooked through.

Sun-dried Tomato & Feta Pasta Salad

Sundried Tomato Pasta Salad

Pasta salad season is BAAACK!  I made this a few weeks ago and it was really good so I whipped up another batch for our memorial day BBQ last weekend.  It’s super colorful and flavorful and a little healthier than those pasta salads made with mayonnaise and eggs.  I basically raided the Whole Foods antipasto bar and then added it all together with veggies, feta cheese & a delicious vinaigrette.

Sundried Tomato Pasta Salad

I was using quinoa pasta for this and I was so scared to overcook it that I think I took it out a little early so the pasta was slightly undercooked but the deliciousness in the rest of the salad made up for it, and you’re not going to do that so let’s pretend it never happened…

It’s kind of bothering me how it looks like there is a pound of feta on top of the salad in these photos, I swear I didn’t put that much on! Oh well, too much feta is a problem I don’t mind having.  When I get feta on my salad at restaurants, they always have this super soft creamy crumbled feta but whenever I buy it in the store, it’s so much harder with larger chunks.  Any favorite brands out there that makes a softer crumbled feta?

Sundried Tomato Feta Pasta Salad

Ok, so I didn’t write specific ingredient amounts for this because it was just obnoxious to try to measure things like onions and chopped peppers but the good thing is that quantities don’t really matter.  Put in as much or as little as you like!  Here’s what the salad includes:

•  Tri-Colored pasta (cooked and then shocked under cold water & drained)
•  Sliced sun-dried tomatoes in oil (the ones I used came with roasted garlic)
•  Finely diced red onion
•  Diced multi-colored peppers (red, orange, yellow, green)
•  Chopped marinated artichokes
•  Crumbled feta cheese
•  Your favorite vinaigrette dressing (I made one with balsamic, olive oil, mustard, salt, pepper & maple syrup)

Sundried Tomato Feta Pasta Salad

The perfect summer salad to bring to a cookout or serve on a weeknight alongside some grilled chicken or burgers 🙂

Hope you all have a great weekend!

WHAT MAKES ME HAPPY:

My summer container plantings.

SummerPlantings

We don’t really have any land to use for gardening so I do everything in containers and they always work out really well.  I got all of my summer plantings done this weekend, it feels good to get them done.  I did 3 containers of flowers, 1 container of peppers, 1 container of mint (because it always takes over everything anyways) and then another container with basil, chives & parsley.  Can’t wait to get some ripe juicy tomatoes so we can enjoy some of that fresh basil!  I also want to make up a big batch of iced tea with fresh mint! yum!

 

 

Fig, Shrimp, Prosciutto & Blue Cheese Pizza

Shrimp, Prosciutto, Fig & Blue Cheese Pizza

Hey guys! Hope you all had a fantastic weekend!  The gorgeous weather was such a welcome surprise! Is next week really Memorial Day?? Beach days are coming!!

We’ve been having some work done on our house and our patio has been covered with ladders and boards for a few weeks but they finally finished and we now have our patio back!  We celebrated by taking out all of the summer furniture and got our grill ON.  Specifically this pizza which was DA BOMB!

Shrimp, Prosciutto, Fig & Blue Cheese Pizza

You can make it by spreading a thin layer of fig spread (you usually find this near the cheese in your supermarket) on a premade pizza crust, then top with some mozzarella cheese, a sprinkle of blue cheese crumbles, thinly sliced prosciutto pieces and grilled shrimp.  To make the shrimp I just tossed it in a little olive oil and seasoned with salt & pepper before grilling.

To grill the pizza, preheat the grill to 450.  Then keep one side of the grill on high and one side of the grill on low and place the pizza on the low side.  Cover the grill and cook until cheese is melted and the crust is crispy.

Shrimp, Prosciutto, Fig & Blue Cheese Pizza

I found these awesome frozen pizza crusts that are perfect on the grill.  They are thin and crispy and it held up great with all the toppings.

Shrimp, Prosciutto, Fig & Blue Cheese Pizza

This was inspired by our favorite pizza from a local restaurant that is topped with lobster and fig and blue cheese.  We substituted the lobster with shrimp and added some crispy prosciutto.  You might be tempted to just fold it in half and eat the entire thing in one bite, it was really THAT good.

Can’t wait for more beautiful evenings like this so we can grill and eat out on the patio 🙂

 

WHAT MAKES ME HAPPY:

My new logo!

ASunshinyDayLogo

My friend Lesley is a super-talented calligrapher and she hand drew this for me.  I’m in-love with it.  I added the blowing dandelion which I pulled from the photograph on my blog header.  I’m not usually a dandelion lover but the thought of blowing on a dandelion in a field at sunset just fills me with all things happy 🙂

(p.s. you should totally check out her Etsy shop)

 

Pork Tenderloin Medallions w/ Blueberry BBQ

Pork Tenderloin Medallions With Blueberry BBQ

Hey everyone!  So it looks like we’re officially into fall now.  For the first time in a long time I don’t have a What I Ate Wednesday post for you today.  We hosted a dinner party Monday night which completely messed up my ability to realize what day it is and as a result, I forgot to take photos of my eats.  If I can remember today I’ll try to take photos on ACTUAL Wednesday and then I’ll post it on Thursday for you.

WineTasting

We had a great weekend visiting some friends in Newport RI.  Saturday was a beautiful day, we went to a vineyard and listened to jazz music while tasting some wine and having a nice little picnic.

WineTasting2

Not a bad way to spend the day!  I have to say, for a New England vineyard, their wines were pretty impressive.  We can’t seem to do reds very well around here but the whites? Whites we can do!  We bought a few refreshing whites to add to our collection 🙂

OtoBeach

The weather has been absolutely gorgeous lately.  Its definitely been a little cooler than normal but the sun has been shining and the sky is blue as can be.  Gotta love fall in New England!  Can’t wait for our New Hampshire trip to see the foliage and pick a crap ton of apples!

Pork Tenderloin Medallions w/ Blueberry BBQ

I don’t have any special recipes to post today but I figured I would share this easy dinner idea I cooked up a few days ago.  I cut up a pork tenderloin into medallions, seasoned and grilled them.  Then I simmered some blueberries with BBQ sauce and served the grilled medallions with the blueberry bbq.  It was a super quick dinner and SO delicious!  I served alongside grilled sweet potatoes and a spinach tomato salad.

 

WHAT MAKES ME HAPPY:

Tailgating!

Tailgating

We tailgated at a polo match this weekend in Newport.  It was my first polo match and it was a lot of fun!  We munched on baked brie, cheese, salami & crackers, fruit & veggies and other yummy eats.  Hope we get to do this again soon, it was a great time!

 

 

 

 

 

Grilled Peach & Goat Cheese Orzo Salad

Grilled Peach & Goat Cheese Orzo Salad

Holy Crapper, today is messing with my MIND!  It’s 60 degrees out right now with a chill in the air that is TOTALLY making it feel like fall.  I went down to make myself lunch and found myself craving soup and comfort food.  AHH, I’m not ready for summer to be over yet!! I had to keep checking the calendar. It’s July 26th Mai-Lis. Repeat after me, it’s only July 26th.  Your summer is not over yet, flip flops are still the footwear of choice and you still have a handful of amazing beach days left!

Grilled Peach & Goat Cheese Orzo Salad

People need to just chill out with the fall clothes and back-to-school displays, can we please just enjoy our summer without skipping ahead a few months?  We only have 3 real summer months here, and now they want to tell me that fall is upon us when its only halfway over? UM NO! Not fair!

Grilled Peach & Goat Cheese Orzo Salad

Well, if you’re one of those ready to whip out the pumpkin spice and apple cider, you can just leave now.  We will have plenty of time for that when it’s ACTUALLY fall.  For now, over here at A Sunshiny Day, we’re going to live in reality and talk about warm summer nights and foods like grilled peaches and pasta salad.

Grilled Peach & Goat Cheese Orzo Salad

This was another salad that I made for the party this weekend, and another salad that I have about 20 pounds of sitting in my fridge right now.  I’m trying but there’s only so much pasta salad you can eat in one week!  Even if it is a friggin’ delicious salad with sweet grilled peaches, goat cheese and peach vinaigrette.

Grilled Peach & Goat Cheese Orzo Salad

Enjoy!  Oh – and happy SUMMER! YAY!!!

 

WHAT MAKES ME HAPPY:

Fresh warm towels.

warmtowel

One of the awesome things that came along with Tom when we moved in together 4 years ago was this towel warmer.  It’s so awesome on cold days to grab a nice warm towel for your shower.  Kind of crazy that just a few days ago I was taking ice cold showers to cool off and now I’m talking about cozy warm towels, but hey – that’s what you get living in New England.  Warm towels make it all better 🙂

Grilled Peach & Goat Cheese Orzo Salad

Serves 10-12
Allergy Milk
Meal type Salad, Side Dish
Misc Serve Cold
Occasion Barbecue, Casual Party

Ingredients

salad

  • 4 Large peaches
  • 1lb orzo (cooked & chilled)
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes (diced)
  • 1/2 cup green onions (diced)
  • 1/2 cup crumbled goat cheese
  • fresh basil (for garnish)

dressing

  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • salt & pepper

Directions

1. Heat the grill to medium-high heat. Slice the peaches in half and remove the pits. Lightly spray the peaches with oil and grill for a few minutes until nicely charred.
2. Place a half of one peach in a blender or food processor. Add the other dressing ingredients and blend until smooth.
3. Chop the remaining grilled peaches and toss with the salad ingredients. Pour the dressing over the salad and stir to coat evenly. Serve with more crumbled goat cheese and fresh basil.

 

 

 

 

 

Maple Bourbon Flank Steak

Maple Bourbon Flank Steak

Ok, so I’m about to talk simultaneously the most manly thing (bourbon steak) and the most girly thing (frolicking with hundreds of pretty fabrics).  If you’re having a hard time focusing on fabrics with a pile of steak in your face, you might as well skip down a few paragraphs.  If you like fabrics & patterns and are a pillow freak like me, then stay right here.

Zimmans

I just got back from this AH-mazing fabric store in Lynn.  I love finding these diamonds in the rough.  I used to live in New Bedford and for a town that gets a bad rap, they’ve got some pretty amazing little places.  Well this little (or should I say HUGE) gem is certainly one of the redeeming qualities of Lynn.  For those of you who don’t live in Massachusetts, let’s just say that Lynn doesn’t really have the best reputation.  The saying goes “Lynn, Lynn, City of Sin, You never come out the way you went in.”  Yah, I’ll just leave it at that.

So I probably already mentioned this before but I have a slight pillow obsession.  By slight obsession, I mean I might need to start a pillows anonymous group, its kind of a problem.  We have closets stuffed with pillows.  Our guest bed currently has 7 pillows on it, the two couches in our living room have 10 pillows…I could keep going but its a little embarrassing.  SO, rather than stop purchasing pillows all together, I’ve started just buying fabric and sewing new cases for them so that it seeeeems like we have new pillows, but we don’t have to find more storage for pillow graveyards.  So I took a little trip there tonight and was once again completely overwhelmed because its literally filled with amazing fabrics from the floor to the ceiling.  After wandering aimlessly for about 45 minutes, I finally decided on a nice coral fabric for the pillows on our new patio.

zimmans2

I’ll share some pics once they’ve been sewn and the patio is all set up.  Can’t wait to see it all come together!

Maple Bourbon Flank Steak

Ok, let’s pump some more testosterone back up in here.  Steak. Grunt. Bourbon. Chew Tobacca, Chew Tobacca, Chew Tobacca Spit.  Have you heard that country song?  So catchy! Damn, stuck in my head already.

Maple Bourbon Flank Steak

Ok, no chewing tobacco, that’s nasty.  Just delicious, tender, grass-fed flank steak marinated in a maple bourbon marinade and grilled to PERFECTION!  I love cooking with whiskey, despite the fact that I hate drinking it.  Fortunately I have a husband who likes it so we tend to always have some on-hand.  If you’re not a whiskey person but you want to cook with it, remember you can always buy the nips at the counter.  That way you don’t have some massive bottle sitting around of something you’ll never drink.

Maple Bourbon Flank Steak

I got this steak at the farmer’s market from a local farm & it was SO good.  Flank steak is great, just marinate it overnight, grill it up, let it sit so all those yummy juices get pulled into the meat and you’ve got yourself a pretty amazing simple dinner.

Maple Bourbon Flank Steak

You’ll want to thinly slice the flank steak against the grain of the meat to make for the most tender pieces.

Enjoy!!

 

WHAT MAKES ME HAPPY:

The smell of dark roasted coffee beans.

CoffeeBeans

MMMMMM, how good is that smell?? Love it!  If you ever go to the store and see all the smelly hole things pushed in on all the coffee bags, you’ll know I’ve been there.  Just kidding. Maybe.

Maple Bourbon Flank Steak

Allergy Soy
Meal type Main Dish
Misc Serve Hot

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup bourbon
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
  • salt & pepper
  • 1 flank steak (1-2 lb)

Directions

1. Mix all of the marinade ingredients together in a bowl. Pour into a bowl or plastic bag with the flank steak and marinate for 8-24 hours.
2. Heat the grill to medium heat. Cook until it reaches your desired doneness (about 6-8 minutes each side) 130-135 degrees F.
3. Remove from the grill and let it sit for 5-10 minutes before serving. Slice into thin slices against the grain of the meat.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Grilled Swordfish w/ Garlic Basil Tomatoes

Grilled Swordfish w/ Garlic Basil Tomatoes

So we don’t have much on this little island we call home.  No traffic lights, no grocery stores, no chains (except Dunkin Donuts because you can’t be a town in Massachusetts without a DD, but this doesn’t really help me since I’m a Starbucks girl).  But one awesome thing we do have?  A fish store.  An awesome little fish store with local, fresh-off-the-boat seafood.  A place where we can stop by after a long day at the beach and pick up fresh lobsters & steamers.  I wait all winter for this little gem to open back up!

Grilled Swordfish w/ Garlic Basil Tomatoes

One night last week I went for a run with a friend and we decided to cook up a quick dinner after so I picked up some fresh cod at the fish store and we make a big salad and a garlicky tomato sauce with fresh basil for the fish.  It was so delicious that I decided to do a little repeat this week.  They had local swordfish on sale for $12.00/lb so I got a big filet to grill up for dinner.  It was so tender, flaky & delicious and this simple tomato mixture was the perfect topping for it.

Grilled Swordfish w/ Garlic Basil Tomatoes

I’m not going to post an exact recipe for this one since it completely depends on what type of fish you’re using and how many people you’re serving but its SUPER easy.

I cooked my swordfish on a grill pan since it was a MONSOON outside and the actual grill was not an option.  They were pretty thick so they took about 5-6 minutes on each side to cook through.  When I made the cod, I seasoned it with salt & pepper and then coated in a little flour so it would crisp up, I cooked it in a little olive oil, about 3-4 minutes each side.

While you are cooking the fish, simply heat a little olive oil in a pan and add some sliced onions and cherry tomatoes.  Cook for 5-10 minutes until the tomatoes are soft & juicy.  Add the garlic and cook for another few minutes seasoning with salt & pepper.  I used 5 cloves, minced but you can adjust depending on your garlic tastes.  Right before serving, toss a bunch of fresh basil into the sauce and stir until slightly wilted.

Yum. It’s like summer on a plate.

Enjoy!

 

WHAT MAKES ME HAPPY:

Sunny Mornings.

otomorning

I absolutely love waking up to the sun shining through the window.  I’ve never been one a person who can sleep in a pitch black room with thick shades drawn.  I would prefer to wake up with the sun and not wake up all confused, not sure if its 11:00 at night or 11 in the morning.  I have a hard time sleeping in hotel rooms sometimes because they are just too dark!

Give me the sun!  Oto follows in my footsteps, he’s a sun worshipper too 🙂

 

 

 

 

Mixed Grill Salad

Mixed Grill Salad

Guess what? Summer’s coming. At least I think it will. Someday.  We seem to have been caught up in a 50 degree time warp but for now I’m going to look outside at that beautiful sun and imagine it’s 80 degrees out there. Pretend with me will you?

Mixed Grill Salad

The farmer’s market will be opening soon which means lots of fresh produce and lots of amazing salads.  My lunches usually consist of leftovers or a HUGE spinach salad.  I try to switch it up a lot so that I don’t get bored with the same thing.  For this one I decided to combine two of my favorite things: salads, and mixed grill.  I love throwing a whole bunch of stuff on the grill and getting a little bit of everything.

Mixed Grill Salad

I grilled up some pork tenderloin pieces seasoned with herbs de provence, spicy chorizo, onions, peppers and zucchini and topped off with some goat cheese and a basic vinaigrette.  My usual dressing consists of olive oil, white balsamic vinegar, honey mustard, parmesan cheese, salt & pepper.  It is super easy and completely addicting.

 

WHAT MAKES ME HAPPY:

My new hydrangea.

hydrangea

I’m so excited about the new blue hydrangea that my Mom brought me when she visited last week.  I’m going to try SO hard to keep this one alive.  My last attempt was not too successful.  I made the mistake of planting it in front of the house and Oto decided it looked tasty and he took out the only flower with one big gulp.  I’m not the most talented gardener but I’m certainly going to give it a try!  The herbs and other flowers will be going in next week, I can’t wait to have an endless supply of fresh basil and thyme.