A Symphonic Night

Happy Sunday!

I had such a great time yesterday that I just couldn’t wait until tonight to share it with all of you! First of all, yesterday was my hair trial for the wedding! I sent the hairdresser a few pictures of what I was thinking about doing, as well as brought about 9 different hair accessories, and it came out just perfect! My mom and two of my bridesmaids AND my flower girl were there, and my mom took a bazillion pictures… here’s just one (sorry about all the self-pictures I’ve been posting lately!)

almost finished...

almost finished...

We all went out for lunch afterward (and I loved having my hair all pretty!), then I hurried home to pick up Adam’s sister for a quick grocery shopping trip before we went to an outdoor concert. We rushed around the store grabbing ingredients for our picnic menu for the night, and then set to work at home putting everything together.

After an adventure to find parking, we rode the shuttle bus to the front gate:

The main gate

The main gate

We had lawn seats, so we looked around for a little while to find a good spot to sit. It’s always good to find a spot with a landmark that’s easy to find, so we sat directly under this:

it was one heck of a landmark!

it was one heck of a landmark!a

We played “follow the butt” all night whenever we left our spot! We started out with an appetizer of guacamole, fresh salsa and tortilla chips.

Thanks for the action shot, Riv!

Thanks for the action shot, Riv!

We had exciting beverages:

More like regular...

More like regular...

Then Rivian and I had made chicken caprese sandwiches, tightly wrapped in foil, and served to the boys in super classy bags:

They loved the bags :)

They loved the bags :)

The sandwiches consisted of 2 small chicken tenders we sauteed in garlic, olive oil, salt and pepper, 1/2 of a large ball of fresh mozzarella, 2 thick tomato slices, and loads of fresh basil:

Italian goodness!

Italian goodness!

Then, we had a little treat: tiny bite-sized chocolate covered cakes that were FAR more delicious than we had anticipated when we bought them!

YUM!

YUM!

We simply had a blast!!!

Adam and I (see the pretty hair??)

Adam and I (see the pretty hair??)

Rivian and Alex (they're getting married in September!)

Rivian and Alex (they're getting married in September!)

I finished off the night with a cup of coffee, and proceeded to take the longest route home EVER. All in all? A fantastic night!

Have a fantastic Sunday all! I’m off to condo-shop with a friend of mine downtown and enjoy the beautiful day!

Posted in family, Italian | Tagged , , , , | 8 Comments

Cute Food Saturday!

Welcome back to the 20th installment of Cute Food Saturday! I cannot believe that it’s been this many weeks already… but as long as you keep checking it out, the more I’ll post! You can visit past installments by clicking here.

Let’s get started!

I love this little cactus chick :)

I love this little cactus chick :)

Cake? Purse? Yes please!

Cake? Purse? Yes please!

NO CLUE how exactly this was done

NO CLUE how exactly this was done

Just because its pretty...

Just because it's pretty...

Name that video game!

Name that video game!

Its Me...Mario!

It's Me...Mario!

awwwww

awwwww

Happy Birthday, MizFit!!!!!!!!!!

Happy Birthday, MizFit!!!!!!!!!!

Thanks for reading!

Posted in Cute Food Saturday | Tagged | 9 Comments

Old School & Loving It!

Happy Friday all! Sorry for my absence yesterday, but Adam and Lizz and I were out at a VIP theater seeing Harry Potter! What made this theater VIP?

  • Gourmet food
  • liquor
  • no one under 21
  • free popcorn
  • free valet parking

My pictures from last night would’ve ended up big black squares, since we ate our dinner during the movie! My turkey burger and MGD 64 were fantastic!

Tonight, was 007/James Bond day at camp, so after much deliberating about a costume, I came up with wearing one of my favorite dresses and being a Bond Girl. What do we think?

Shaken, not stirred

Shaken, not stirred

The rest of the day was fairly relaxed, and we went on an hour-long nature hike in the afternoon. The kids decided that the barn we passed was haunted, and that there were bears in the forest that could climb trees and jump down on them. It was a fun adventure!

After an inordanately long commute, I came home with every intent of going to the grocery store with Adam and then cooking dinner. But I made the mistake of sitting down. After I sit down, there’s no getting me to do anything worth anything. So what did we do? We went to a neighborhood Greek-owned restaurant that we frequent on Saturdays for breakfast. Old Bridge is one of those places whose decor hasn’t changed since the early ’80s, water and soda and beer are served in the same glasses, and entire dinners are $9.95. I grew up going to similar places with my dad, and Bridge (as we call it) has a major nostalgia factor for me. So tonight, my dinner was far from gourmet, organic, healthy, or natural. It was creamy, fried, salty, and sugary and I loved every bite of it.

Started with clam chowder with crackers

Started with clam chowder with crackers

Dinner was salmon patties with some creamy dill sauce stuff

Dinner was salmon patties with some creamy dill sauce stuff

Shared this cake with Adam for dessert

Shared this cake with Adam for dessert

Not gourmet. Not at all. Far too salty. Delicious! And the best part? It was served to me by a lovely waitress named Pat who kept my Diet Coke refilled (yup, had that too!). I had no clean-up, no dishes, no prep…just what I needed! It’s back to cooking next week, but for now? I’m good with this.

Make sure you come back tomorrow for everyone’s favorite: Cute Food Saturday!

Posted in dinner out | Tagged , , | 8 Comments

Gimme Music, Sweet Music…

There’s been something in the works, behind the scenes, here at What’s For Dinner for the last, oh, month or so.  No, it’s not more foodie jewelry. I’ve been working with SonicTap to help my recipes and dinners go from mere words and pictures on a computer screen to a full experience.

How?

SonicTap is run by the man known as Ren Man to MizFit readers, and what he’s done is taken meals, recipes, workouts, etc. and made the perfect music playlists to go with them. Are you confused? I thought you might be… so I bring you the man behind SonicTap to explain it all.

Dining vs. Eating: Dining is an experience you seek to satisfy a desire, to fit a mood, to share a moment.  Eating is something you do to fill your belly.  Dining is more than the sum of its parts.  Meatballs and marinara can be something you eat in front of the TV… or you can set it atop handmade pasta on good china, paired with a medium bodied red and some candlelight.  Setting is as important to the experience as the food itself, and music is a key ingredient of setting; music is the final ingredient to a great meal.  Are you rolling out pasta and mincing vegetables for a Bolognese sauce?  Try some Louis Prima.  Serving your creation atop a checkered tablecloth?  Maybe the Rat Pack captures the sentiment.  Are you grilling something spicy for a gathering of friends?  Serving sleek appetizers over cocktails?  Cooking all afternoon for a large Thanksgiving meal?  Just like a crowd-pleasing white wine goes best with your Thanksgiving turkey, there is a perfect playlist match for every meal.

For most of us, finding the time match the right music with the food we are serving is too complicated and time consuming.  We’re already spending so much time in the kitchen preparing the perfect meal, who has time to search for the right accompanying sound?  That’s where Sonic Tap comes in.  The Sonic Tap service provides professionally designed playlists for any dining experience (along with playlists for exercising, road trips, or just listening and enjoying).  Sonic Tap is powered by DMX, a leading providing of commercial music services to restaurants, hotels, health clubs and retailers around the world.  Sonic Tap takes more than thirty years of music programming expertise to produce thousands of professionally designed playlists.  So, whether the cuisine you’re serving is Italian, French, Japanese, Chinese, Hawaiian, Irish or good old American comfort food, we’ve got the perfect playlist to turn that food into a dining experience.

So, try it out! Want to see the perfect playlist to go along with my Orange-Glazed Spicy Baked Tofu? Click here! There are more playlists to come to go with more recipes, and explore SonicTap! There are playlists for just about anything…browse by Designer to find your new dinner mix, workout mix, or heck, just a “driving in the car to work” mix.

As I was eating my BBQ salmon salad at Champps last night, I realized exactly how much music really does influence the dining experience. I was in a great mood as some of my favorite songs were playing, and I swear, this salad tasted SO much better than normal.

Mmm... BBQ-y goodness

Mmm... BBQ-y goodness

Thanks SonicTap for hookin’ up the tuneage (sorry, Pauly Shore moment)!

Have a great Thursday!

Posted in dinner out, friends, guest post | Tagged , , | 14 Comments

Splash Landing

I was a BIG winner at camp today! We had two counselor contests, and while I always participate, I rarely win. Today, however, was my lucky day! I won first place in the splashdown contest after this jump off the 10 foot high-dive:

I can't believe I just posted this picture...

I can't believe I just posted this picture...

And then my group won for “most creative” for our “TP Your Counselor” contest for making me this beautiful wedding dress!

Maybe I should trade for this one?

Maybe I should trade for this one?

It was great for my girls, because while I just got bragging rights, they got to get 2 treats from our “treasure chest”! When I got home from this productive day, Adam and I set about making pizza to put on the grill. The final product was good, but the process? Kind of a joke!

Now, when I was about 16, my good friend Mary and I started a tradition of making grilled pizzas as soon as it was nice out. She’d make the dough, and as vegetables in our respective moms’ gardens grew, they would become the toppings. We’d always use olives and feta cheese too. Mary’s house was the first place I remember having kitchen disasters, but also some of my best cooking memories were there with her. She larned to cook much the same way I did: with her mom.

What I forgot today, though, was that Mary and I would put the naked crusts on the grill, THEN top them once they were partially cooked. What did I do today (despite Adam-who’s-worked-at-two-pizza-places’ advice)? Definitely topped the pizza dough then tried to get it on the grill. It didn’t happen. I ended up putting the (not greased enough) cookie sheet on the grill and cooked it that way. It came out delicious (though hard to get off the pan!), and was topped with:

  • pizza sauce
  • low-fat mozzarella
  • fresh spinach
  • black olives
  • fresh tomatoes
  • fat free tomato basil feta cheese
  • drizzle of olive oil

It was easy and fantastic, and something I’ll be trying again soon, in the correct procedure order. Oh, and did I mention it was GORGEOUS?!

It was "just" frozen crust. Next time: homemade!

It was "just" frozen crust. Next time: homemade!

After dinner, I decided to finally use up the frozen bananas I have had in the freezer for a week to make Gena’s infamous raw banana soft serve.  First step: scrub out the food processor. Next step: pulse frozen bananas til creamy. Then: eat!

I topped it with the last of my almond butter packets:

delicioso!

delicioso!

I do agree with both Jenn and Heather that it is absolutely a delicious treat! My only gripe is that it needed to be 2 bananas to be anything substantial. Oh well, it was fantastic! Thanks Gena!

In other exciting news, one of my photos was accepted on Photograzing! See it here! I hope its not the last…

OH! And the girls saw Steve today… he says “bbbrrrrtbbttttt”. He also has a new friend whose name I can’t remember. It was something like Klooby or something similar.

Since it’s the exact middle of the summer (well, as of noon tomorrow), all this work is catching up with me… I’m off to bed THIS early! Happy almost hump day!

Posted in friends, grilling, Italian, simple recipe | Tagged , , , | 21 Comments