Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Cuban Picadillo with Baked Tostones

Anyway, this was DELICIOUS, but I do feel that I should have made some rice and more veggies. Maybe next time I will make some chickpeas or something to go along with them. I was still a little hungry afterwards. 
But here are the recipes for the Cuban Picadillo and Baked Tostones. 


Recipe Adapted from SkinnyTaste
  • 1/2 large chopped onion
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tomato, chopped
  • 1/2 pepper, finely chopped
  • 3 tbsp cilantro
  • 1-1/2 lb 93% lean ground beef (You can use ground turkey if you want, but you may need to use a little more oil to cook it.)
  • 4 oz (1/2 can) tomato sauce
  • kosher salt
  • fresh ground pepper
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1-2 bay leaf
  • 2 tbsp green Spanish olive, sliced.

Brown meat on medium flame in large sauté pan and season with salt and pepper. Use a wooden spoon to break the meat up into small pieces. When meat is no longer pink, drain all juice from pan.

Meanwhile, while meat is cooking, chop onion, garlic, pepper, tomato and cilantro.

Add sofrito (onion mixture) to the meat and continue cooking on a low flame. Add alcaparrado and about 2 tbsp of the brine (this adds great flavor) cumin, bay leaf, and more salt if needed. Add tomato sauce and 1/4 cup of water and mix well. Reduce heat and simmer covered about 15-20 minutes.

Recipe Adapted from SkinnyTaste
Baked Tostones

Servings: 4 Size: 1/4th Cook Time: 30 minutes Old Points: 3 pts • Points+: 4

  • 3 medium (3 cups) green plantains
  • 2 tsp vegetable oil
  • salt
  • Pam spray
Preheat the oven to 400°. Spray baking sheet with cooking spray.

Peel plantains and slice into 1/2 thick slices. Place in a bowl and toss with oil and salt. Arrange slices on the baking sheet. Lightly coat with a little more oil spray on top and bake for 10 minutes or until slightly brown on the bottom. Remove from oven.

Using a tostonera (a press), slightly mash each piece to about a quarter of an inch thick. If a tostonera is not available, insert the pieces between a folded piece of brown-paper and press down using a saucer or the bottom of a glass jar.

Lightly re-spray the baking sheet and place the plantains brown side up onto the baking sheet. Lightly spray the top and bake for another 15 minutes until golden brown and crispy.

Monday, February 25, 2013

Wagon Diaper Cake

Hey guys!
Today is Monday, so it is CRAFTING day!!!!!

My craft today is a Wagon Diaper Cake! =o) I really don't like making traditional diaper cakes because I feel that they are boring. So luckily, Thom on youtube (OFallonMonkey) makes awesome diaper cakes. I attached the video, but she did leave out some parts. I make this cake for the SAC at my school. She is having twins, so I had to make it more neutral. It still turned out awesome!

2 foam poster boards
At least 50 diapers (size two)
4 Receiving blankets
1 spool of 2 1/2 in ribbon
1 spool of 1 1/2 in ribbon
1 teething ring
4 decorative flowers
Hot glue gun (and glue)
Roll from the side

She doesn't show you how to make the wheels, but I think it's because she has the instructions on other videos. If you don't want to sift through her videos to find how to, I am including some pictures.

I rolled the diapers up (open end first), tied them with rubber bands and then put six of them together.
Wagon from the top.
Here is the bottom of the wagon with the axles attached along with the wheels.

Here is the receiving blanket wrapped around the diapers.

One side finished.

Top view

Other side.
Then if you look at the pictures at the beginning, I put ribbons around and then I tapes and hot glued them.
Oh, also, instead of putting a receiving blanket at the "handle" (since mine came in a pack of four), I just used a ribbon. That way I didn't have to use pins to hold it down, and I could just use hot glue. I also didn't wrap the ribbon around the handle.

The rest of the directions Thom does it in the video.
If you have any questions, please let me know! =o)

Friday, February 22, 2013

Posting Schedule

I know that my posts have been a little random, but it was because I wasn't sure what I was going to focus on. But I have seen the trend that I post crafts (mostly painting shoes and baby stuff), recipes, and DIY hair.
So I came up with this schedule so that my posts can be a little more predictable and hopefully I will get more FOLLOWERS as well. =o)
[PLEASE follow me if you haven't already. =o) I would truly appreciate it.]

Posting Schedule
Monday:  Crafting (This will range a bit. It depends on what and IF I can get some new crafting in.]

Wednesday: Recipes

Friday: DIY Hair

I will try to keep this schedule as best as I can. But I can promise that I will post something on these days. I didn't add any days from the weekend because they tend to be REALLY busy. If I have time I will try and post at least once on the weekend.

I hope that you have been enjoying my posts!

Leave me a comment if you like what you see, or if you have any requests!

Thanks for reading!!

Have a great weekend. =o)

Unique 4 Strand Braid (Braid in Braid)

I am always on the hunt for cool side ponytail/braid hairstyles, especially in the winter when my hair gets REALLY static y from the dry heat. A plain braid gets boring real fast if you do it everyday. So this was as nice change to the usual.
I wrapped my ponytail holder with my hair and used a topsy turvy ponytail tool to pull the hair back into the ponytail. I will also add the video from bebexoxo since I got the tip from her. 
Wrapped Ponytail Video

My hair ended up coming out a little throughout the day since I have layers. (I totally regret getting them cut so short... but all I can do now is grow them out. =o)) I got a lot of compliments though!

Monday, February 18, 2013

More painted Toms (for Marcie's birthday)

Here is a pair of Toms I painted for my sister in laws birthday. I found inspiration on Pinterest. They look very similar but I added some words... I didn't want it to look too much like a copy of those shoes. Anyway... Hope you find some creative inspiration as well! Enjoy!

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Halupki (Stuffed Cabbage)

 Recipe Adapted from:

Halupki (Stuffed Cabbage Rolls) Recipe

1 large head of white cabbage or 2 small (I like two small because the cabbage is more tender)
2 lbs. ground meat (I use ground turkey.)
1 egg
1 teaspoon parsley
1/2 chopped onion
1 clove chopped garlic
1/2 cup cooked rice
3 cans tomato sauce
1 tablespoon sugar
1 tablespoon vinegar
1 3/4 cups water

Read more at:

~Cut core out of cabbage head and cover with boiling water in large stock pot. Boil cabbage until leaves begin to fall off the head with a little help from you. I stand at the stove and peel one leaf off at a time. Drain leaves. With a sharp knife thin out veins along the spine of each cabbage leaf. Do not cut the vein out.

~Take the leaves from the head (carefully) Mix the meat, salt and pepper, egg, parsley, garlic, onion and rice together.
~Make individual balls out of the meat mixture and roll them up in cabbage leaves.
~In a 5-quart dutch oven, put some leaves of cabbage on bottom of pan.
~Add cabbage rolls on top.
~Mix tomato sauce, sugar, vinegar, and water together.
~Pour over cabbage rolls, cover and cook on medium heat for 1 1/2 hours. Or you can put in the oven at 375, I would just keep an eye on them so the bottom doesn't burn.

Friday, February 15, 2013

Baby girl bow holder

I saw this really cute idea for a bow holder on Pinterest. There weren't much directions so I just guessed at what they did. Enjoy and let me know if you have any questions! =o)

What you need:
1. Picture frame (the one I used holds an 8 x10 picture).
2. 3/4 in. Ribbon
3. Decorations (I found some scrap book stickers)
4. Staple gun (the wood to my frame was very hard and luckily my husband had one)
5. Rubber cement (to help the stickers stay on the frame. This is the glue I highly recommend using, it dries clear and sticks well. The other option is super glue. Don't use craft or wood glue if the frame is a glossed finished frame.)
6. Scissors
7. Tape


Remove the glass and backing from the picture frame. You should be left with just the frame.

I started to measure the length of the open space which was 10 inches, and since I wanted four strips, I marked down every two inches.

Each ribbon I cut was about 11.5 inches long. That way I had enough to fold over so that the ends would fray.

I taped the ends in on both sides so they wouldn't fray.
Then, with the help of my husband, I stapled the ribbon onto the picture frame.
I placed each ribbon in the middle of the lines I drew previously at each 2 inch mark.This is what it looks like from the back.

This is what it looks like from the front. Noe it's time to decorate as you'd like. =o) This is the fun part!!!                             

And this is the final look. Simple, but beautiful!!! The strips on the side are borders for scrapbooking. I glued two different ones together. The other decorations are stickers, but I needed to use rubber cement because they wouldn't stick to the glossed frame. I also will add some ribbon to the top so that I can tie it in a bow and hang it. You can also use picture frame holders.

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Mint Chocolate Chip Cookies

As Girl Scout Cookie time approaches.... I have ordered by cookies but have not received them yet... and ice cream season is not at it's peak, these cookies are a GREAT way to satisfy that minty chocolaty craving we all get.

I actually found this recipe from Rachel Ray. This is probably one of the only recipes that I like from her. She actually used a store bought chocolate chip cookie mix, but you know I don't like to take short cuts. =o) Baking is all from scratch!

To make these cookies I actually combined Rachel Ray's recipe, the Nestle Toll House cookie recipe, and a little spin from me. (Nestle Toll House always reminds me of the Friends episode when Monica is trying to figure out Phoebe's Grandama's cookie recipe....hehe)


They are sssoooo yummy!!!

Mint Chocolate Chip Cookies


  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour (I use 1 cup white whole wheat flour and 1 1/2 cups of all purpose white flour)
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 cups (12-oz. pkg.) NESTLÉ® TOLL HOUSE® Semi-Sweet Chocolate Morsels
  • 1-2 teaspoons pure mint extract (You can add more if you like it minty, but don't add too much!)
  •  5-10 drops of green food coloring. (You can add more or less, depending on how green you want your cookies.)


PREHEAT oven to 375° F.

COMBINE flour, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon in small bowl. Beat butter, granulated sugar, brown sugar and vanilla extract in large mixer bowl until creamy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Gradually beat in flour mixture. Add mint extract and green food coloring until desired result. Stir in morsels. Drop by rounded tablespoon onto ungreased baking sheets. (I use a small ice cream scoop to portion out my cookie dough You can find it HERE, I think I have the 1.25 scoop, you don't want it too big.)

BAKE for 9 to 11 minutes or until golden brown on the bottom. Cool on baking sheets for 2 minutes; remove to wire racks to cool completely.

PAN COOKIE VARIATION: Grease 15 x 10-inch jelly-roll pan. Prepare dough as above. Spread into prepared pan. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until golden brown. Cool in pan on wire rack. Makes 4 dozen bars.

dough as above. Divide in half; wrap in waxed paper. Refrigerate for 1 hour or until firm. Shape each half into 15-inch log; wrap in wax paper. Refrigerate for 30 minutes.* Preheat oven to 375° F. Cut into 1/2-inch-thick slices; place on ungreased baking sheets. Bake for 8 to 10 minutes or until golden brown. Cool on baking sheets for 2 minutes; remove to wire racks to cool completely. Makes about 5 dozen cookies.

* May be stored in refrigerator for up to 1 week or in freezer for up to 8 weeks.
** I also use the scoop to freeze any cookies I don't want to bake at the moment. Place them on a cookie sheet lined with wax paper and place in the freezer for about 15 minutes. Take them out and place in a freezer safe bag. Make sure you label with instructions. I like to defrost my cookie before I bake them.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Jalapeno Popper Baked Chicken

 My husband LOVES jalapeno poppers, but I really don't make them. Over the summer I was obsessed with this blog SkinnyTaste. She has a lot of cool interesting recipes that don't make you feel too guilty eating. =o) (I also got the Guinness cupcakes from here).
 I came across this interesting recipe and I just HAD to try it. Cheese + Spicy + Chicken... it couldn't be bad! =o)
Just an FYI before you make this, (or anything with Jalapenos), is to make sure you know the spiciness of the peppers. They tend to differ a lot depending on the season, plant, even where you got it from the plant. The way I usually tell is that when I cut into it (I cover my left hand with a glove since the oils from the pepper really irritate my skin) I can smell the spiciness. It is a very stinging smell. If I don't get that "stinging" sensation, I usually put more peppers in.

Well, here are my finished chicken poppers. =o)

I forgot to take pictures BEFORE we ate them... sorry! =o)

They were DELICIOUS though.

Even though I only put 1.5 jalapenos in, it was still SUPER SPICY!!
When I made this recipe, I actually had REALLY spicy peppers so I only used about 1 and a half. I also do not take the seeds and the ribs out, I feel that the a lot of the flavor is taken out when you do that. So I usually just gauge it by my nose. =o) Plus, I love spicy!


Recipe Adapted from: Skinnytaste

Cheesy Jalapeño Popper Baked Stuffed Chicken
Servings: 4 • Serving Size: 2 stuffed breasts • Old Points: 9 pt • Points+: 9 pts
Calories: 371 • Fat: 17.5 g • Protein: 42.7 g • Carb: 11 g • Fiber: 1.5 g • Sugar: 0.6 g
Sodium: 355.8 mg (without salt)


  • 2 slices center cut bacon, cooked and crumbled
  • 3 jalapeños, chopped (Depending on how spicy they are. I usually use the whole jalapeno, I don't like taking the seeds out. I think I used 1.5 because they were so spicy.)
  • 3 oz 1/3 less fat cream cheese, softened
  • 4 oz shredded cheddar jack (Sargento, you can use reduced fat if you'd like, but I just want the real thing. And I think it tastes better.)
  • 2 tbsp chopped scallions
  • 4 thin sliced skinless chicken breast cutlets, 3 oz each
  • 1/2 cup Italian seasoned whole wheat breadcrumbs
  • 1 1/2 juicy limes, juice of
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • salt and fresh pepper
  • olive oil non-stick spray 


    and dry chicken cutlets, cut the chicken in half and slightly pound out till about 1/4 inch thick. Season with salt and pepper.  Preheat oven to 450°. Lightly spray a baking dish with non-stick spray.

    Combine cream cheese, cheddar, scallions, jalapeño and bacon crumbles in a medium bowl.

    Lay chicken cutlets on a working surface and spread 2 tbsp of cream cheese mixture on each cutlet. Loosely roll each one, secure the ends with toothpicks to prevent the cheese from oozing out.

    Place breadcrumbs in a bowl; in a second bowl combine olive oil, lime juice, salt and pepper.

    Dip chicken in lime-oil mixture, then in breadcrumbs and place seam side down on a baking dish. Repeat with the remaining chicken. When finished, lightly spray the top of the chicken with oil spray.

    Bake 22-25 minutes, serve immediately.

Saturday, February 9, 2013

Blue hair!!!!!

I decided to get my hair dyed... I haven't dyed it in a few years... But I thought today is the day. I have wanted to get it blue forever! But I didn't want it to be too crazy.
Luckily my hair stylist knew exactly what I wanted!
Here it is!!! And he curled it for fun!

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Sock Curls

I am totally on a no heat curling hair streak! =o)

Since doing the cocoon curls, I had really high hopes for no heat curling techniques. I have not perfected the cocoon curls yet, but I thought I would give another technique a try. And searching through youtube, I found SOCK curls!!! haha...Who knew that socks had more purpose than keeping your toes warm!
They are SUPER easy, and who doesn't have socks just lying around! =o) I was going to use my husbands socks, but then I thought about where those socks have been! Ewww.....Even clean I hate touching them, and putting them in my hair was a big NO, NO! But luckily, I have a few pairs of tube socks (thin ones). You really want to use socks that aren't too thick and long enough so that you can tie. 

So here is a picture of my hair all done right before I went to bed.
 And this is the picture after I woke up, took a shower, and changed.
 Now onto the unveiling!

 This is after I "tuffed" it out a little bit pulled some of the curls apart. I also put a barrette in because my hair was SO poofy!

Why can't I have curls like this all the time?!?
This is what my hair looked liked when I got home. My curls did fall, curse my straight Asian hair =o), but it did keep nice waves. Just they aren't the fun curls I had this morning. But it is Winter and my hair gets SUPER staticy, so it got really annoying during the day. Playing with it all day really didn't help either. =o)

Sad face...