Eat Happy: Pan Fried Bone-In Rib Eye

Hi there.  Welcome back! We’re doing a weekly series that publishes every Thursday wherein we are cooking through one of our FAVE cookbooks : Eat Happy! If you missed the intro post you can click on over here to read that.

We are starting with the very first recipe and working our way all the way through to the end. We will not be sharing with you the actual recipes that we cook. We WILL be sharing our experience during the whole process and our opinion of the outcome. So thanks for stopping by…and let’s dive in to this week’s recipe shall we?


This week, I was both excited and scared to discover I had this recipe.  Excited because, hello, steak… not to mention I was on my period something fierce and like to eat red meat during that time.  Then there was scared, because I have never cooked a rib eye myself.  Also, after the tenderloin debacle, I worried about my grocery store tab.

All that worry for nothing, y’all.

I went to several stores and none carried truffle salt, so I decided to skip that.  My store also didn’t have a rib eye with a bone, but I decided I sure didn’t care about that.  I’ve never enjoyed cutting around a bone.

That pizza is not part of my meal.  That is for kids who only wanted pizza and have a mom who didn’t feel like dealing with it that night.  Brussels are also not in the recipe, but I felt like eating some.

Listen.  This was phenomenal and stupid easy.  So easy, that I don’t understand what took me so long to try pan-frying a steak!  I can not wait to cook steak again.

Eat Happy : Southwest Style Burgers

Hi there.  Welcome back! We’re doing a weekly series that publishes every Thursday wherein we are cooking through one of our FAVE cookbooks : Eat Happy! If you missed the intro post you can click on over here to read that.

We are starting with the very first recipe and working our way all the way through to the end. We will not be sharing with you the actual recipes that we cook. We WILL be sharing our experience during the whole process and our opinion of the outcome. So thanks for stopping by…and let’s dive in to this week’s recipe shall we?


I was excited to make this one… because who doesn’t love a burger? I know I sure do! 🙂

As always, this recipe was uncomplicated and not surprisingly, I had all the ingredients for this particular one on hand! To say I enjoy southwest flavors is an understatement. They are in regular rotation when it comes to meals I eat.

My least favorite part about making burgers? The getting your hands down in the meat and squishing it around to mix all the ingredients and then form the patties. Anyone else feel the same way??

I pan fried these to get a nice sear on the outside and then stuck them in the oven to finish up.

I think they turned out freaking delicious – and I don’t know why this was my first time making this particular recipe! I’ve for sure been missing out.

I added a fried egg to go along with my burger patties…and it was the perfect compliment. For sure don’t mess up this delicious burger with a bun. It’s unnecessary and would totally screw up that whole “no sugar no grains” thing I’ve got going on when it comes to what I eat! 😉

What do you guys think? Have you ever had a southwest style burger?

Eat Happy: Leek and Mustard Crusted Tenderloin

Hi there.  Welcome back! We’re doing a weekly series that publishes every Thursday wherein we are cooking through one of our FAVE cookbooks : Eat Happy! If you missed the intro post you can click on over here to read that.

We are starting with the very first recipe and working our way all the way through to the end. We will not be sharing with you the actual recipes that we cook. We WILL be sharing our experience during the whole process and our opinion of the outcome. So thanks for stopping by…and let’s dive in to this week’s recipe shall we?


I was looking forward to this meal, because Stuart and I often treat ourselves to some tenderloin steaks on the weekend and I’ve been known to really polish some off.  I got to the grocery store and walked right up to the butcher’s counter like I own the place.  After all, I buy from there a lot.  I told the kid running the counter that I needed the 2-3 pounds of the beef tenderloin, unsliced.  He lit up when he weighed out the meat and wrapped it up.

“He must love his job.  Or maybe he loves beef,” I thought.  Oh, how naive I was.

I took my neat brown-paper-wrapped package, set it in the buggy, and glanced at the price.  Then I picked it up to inspect closer because there’s no way I was seeing the price right.

$55.  FIFTY-FIVE dollars.  For a hunk of beef.  oh, but no big since with my shopper’s card I got it for $50!

Oh boy.

Anyway, I had a brief panic attack, checking all my cards and accounts to make sure I could even buy that and the other stuff I needed, then headed home to put away my prize beef.

With the cost of the beef, the pressure to not mess it up was really freaking real.  You know what I’m saying?

I gotta say, once again, Anna did not fail me.  Her recipes are all reasonably easy to follow without fucking it up.

Honestly, the hardest part of this one was the cleanup, because not only was my blender involved, but I transferred the meat a thousand times trying to get the right pan for this project and then once done, the right platter to slice it on.  I did come to the conclusion during the process that I need a roasting pan, new knives, and some other things for the kitchen.

I could NOT get the consistency of the crust just right, nor could I get it to stick to the meat.  I have no doubt that is partially due to the fact that I made a couple of substitutions based on what was available in my pantry (after already spending so much on the meat).  It smelled amazing in the oven though and holy crap, the coating alone tastes amazing.  When I was slicing it, I was eating the pieces that fell off.  I could eat JUST that for dinner.

But listen.  I am just going to put this out there – this is a special occasion dish for us because of the cost.  I am going to venture a guess and say there are probably less expensive tenderloin options.  Mine was just extra fancy, I guess?

Now, the verdict – was it worth $50?

Abso. Freaking. Lutely.  It melted in my mouth and Stuart, who is super picky about how beef is cooked, LOVED it.  We rationed it out over 3 days to stretch our grocery budget.  I will definitely make this again for Christmas or Stuart’s birthday!

I highly recommend making this if you want to impress someone with a fancy meal!

 

Eat Happy: Coconut Crusted Shrimp

Hi there.  Welcome back! We’re doing a weekly series that publishes every Thursday wherein we are cooking through one of our FAVE cookbooks : Eat Happy! If you missed the intro post you can click on over here to read that.

We are starting with the very first recipe and working our way all the way through to the end. We will not be sharing with you the actual recipes that we cook. We WILL be sharing our experience during the whole process and our opinion of the outcome. So thanks for stopping by…and let’s dive in to this week’s recipe shall we?


When I saw that I was going to be making shrimp, I was excited because I love shrimp, but I have also never actually cooked it myself, so there was some intimidation there.  After reading Ashley’s shrimp experience from last week, I was really not looking forward to peeling and deveining them.

Luckily, Kroger had the hookup.  Sure, they were more expensive, but it was a price I was willing to pay to avoid that nasty task.

I was expecting this to be a stressful meal to make, just out of shear intimidation.  However, I poured some tequila, turned on the music, and got to it.

Like pretty much all recipes where you bread or crust something, the most frustrating part was when the coating starts to get super wet and no longer sticks to shrimp.  In other coated foods, I have started doubling the coating so that when the first batch gets wet, I can use the second.  Just a tip for you.

I honestly can’t believe how overall easy this was to cook and how delightful the taste was.  I feel like it’s a dish that I can impress company with, but at the same time, my 4-year-old loved it.

Would absolutely make this again, and kinda can’t wait!

Eat Happy: Almond Crusted Baked Cod

Hi there.  Welcome back! We’re doing a weekly series that publishes every Thursday wherein we are cooking through one of our FAVE cookbooks : Eat Happy! If you missed the intro post you can click on over here to read that.

We are starting with the very first recipe and working our way all the way through to the end. We will not be sharing with you the actual recipes that we cook. We WILL be sharing our experience during the whole process and our opinion of the outcome. So thanks for stopping by…and let’s dive in to this week’s recipe shall we?


When I realized that I was making fish again, I took a deep breath before remembering that Anna Vocino hasn’t steered us wrong yet.  I was definitely excited to go back to the fancy ass Kroger to get the fish, so it made it fun.

I will admit, to save some money and frustration, I took a few liberties with this recipe.  I already had almond flour, but no almond meal as the recipe calls for.  I looked at Kroger but they didn’t have any, so I decided to just roll with the flour rather than make another stop.  Instead of chopping fresh chives, I used lightly dried ones.  And shallots?  I’m not entirely sure what those are because I always just add more garlic instead.

Is there anything more satisfying than a big hunk of good butter melting in a pan?

Yes, there is.  It’s garlic sautéing in said butter. *drool*

Sometime in the middle of cooking, I sat down my champagne glass and it barely tapped the handle of the coffeemaker.  Unfortunately, that broke the glass.  I’m still not sure if I’m more upset about the glass being broken or the champagne wastage.

I have to say, this was the least stressful meal I’ve made from Eat Happy in quite awhile!  It was quick and easy to prepare and well, tasty as fuck.

I served the fish with tomato slices marinated in balsamic vinegar and topped with mozzarella, baked and and finished with a quick broil.  Delicious!

Eat Happy: Salmon with Lemon Dijon Basil Sauce

Hi there.  Welcome back! We’re doing a weekly series that publishes every Thursday wherein we are cooking through one of our FAVE cookbooks : Eat Happy! If you missed the intro post you can click on over here to read that.

We are starting with the very first recipe and working our way all the way through to the end. We will not be sharing with you the actual recipes that we cook. We WILL be sharing our experience during the whole process and our opinion of the outcome. So thanks for stopping by…and let’s dive in to this week’s recipe shall we?


Well HELLO! So glad you’re back (or new?) to our series. 🙂 Normally, I would have been filled with much fear and trepidation before attempting to execute this recipe. Why? Well. Fish in general is not something that is part of my normal repertoire of meat I cook. BUT – I’ve already tackled tuna two weeks ago. AND last week, Rhonda did a salmon recipe that turned out super delicious (according to her review). Therefore, I was super chill about this whole thing this week.

I’ll just start by saying, this was damn good. I’m for sure going to make this again…definitely for my dad. He really likes salmon, and I’m pretty sure this will impress the heck out of him. He’s a really great cook, and used to always encourage me to learn to cook well and to enjoy it. I never really got on that boat, but when I can impress him with something I cooked, I feel pretty dang good about myself. 😉

Anyway, to the experience at hand.

I ventured to my local Winn-Dixie to retrieve the salmon and other (very few) ingredients that I didn’t also have on hand. Which reminds me. I said this the other day in our NSNG Facebook Group. If you’re cooking recipes from this book and have to buy a bunch of stuff that you think you may not use again. You might be worried that it is extra money not well spent. You’re wrong.  You’ll totally use it again. For me, I really appreciate that. For example : I bought Dijon mustard ages ago and have used it so much while cooking through Eat Happy. Dijon mustard is not a typical staple in my fridge, so when I bought it I thought, “this will just sit in the fridge til it expires and I have to throw it out.” Um. Wrong. I’ve been using it like crazy!

But like I said – I went to Winn-Dixie. I went there once with the littles in tow. They were their usual distracting selves. I’d promised a visit to the trampoline park following this trek through the grocery store – so to say they were waiting on pins and needles is a huge understatement. Every time I grabbed an item, Coop kept asking: “is THAT the last thing???” I mean. Bless my heart. So we check out and leave and I run home to drop the goods off before we head to the trampoline park.

As I’m unloading the groceries – I realize my bell peppers are missing. There aren’t bell peppers in this recipe but I’d bought them for something else. SO – I get back in the car and call the store. They lady is like, “yup. we saw that you left them. Just come back when you can.”

Sooo, we go jump and then I have to break it to my very tired and very whiny children – that yes. We have to go back to the grocery store.

We go check in with customer service to confirm that yes I’m here to retrieve my forgotten bell peppers. Sophie sees a tiny child buggy that she MUST PUSH around the store. I allow her to get that. Now. We’ve got the bell peppers and are about to leave when the sweet lady who checked me out reminds me that I also forgot my lemons.

The lemons!

I definitely needed those for this recipe. SO, I have to tell Coop, who is done with this whole affair, that sorry bud. We gotta make the hike back to the other side of the store to grab those lemons. I also made Sophie put back her buggy. She breaks down screaming and crying. Cooper is going on and on about how he’s just ready to go home and watch rescue bots. I mean. You would have thought I was subjecting them to actual torture techniques.

AND while I’m getting the lemons, Sophie wanders off and finds an apricot that she decides to squeeze until it bursts in her tiny little hand.

I mean. Bless it all.

We did finally get all of the ingredients and make it back home. Compared to my shopping experience – cooking this salmon was a freaking breeze. Really though, it’s a very straight forward and simple recipe that sounds super impressive.  IMO

It’s so damn tasty too. And so damn good for my body. No sugars. No grains. I was satisfied and left feeling great about my choices.

And apparently. Rhonda and I love salmon. We had no clue. Thank goodness Anna is around to help us realize that through her amazing cook book. 😉

As I am writing this post, I’m heating up the left overs in the oven to eat for dinner. And I can’t wait for it to be ready!

What about you guys? What are your feelings on salmon? Any mom stories from the trenches of grocery shopping with unwilling kids to share? 😉

Eat Happy: Mango Salsa

Hi there.  Welcome back! We’re doing a weekly series that publishes every Tuesday wherein we are cooking through one of our FAVE cookbooks : Eat Happy! If you missed the intro post you can click on over here to read that.

We are starting with the very first recipe and working our way all the way through to the end. We will not be sharing with you the actual recipes that we cook. We WILL be sharing our experience during the whole process and our opinion of the outcome. So thanks for stopping by…and let’s dive in to this week’s recipe shall we?

When I realized I was going to be making mango salsa, I gotta tell you – I was not excited and made a face for sure.  I don’t love mango.  Okay, I actually can’t stand mango.  I like mango flavored cocktails and stuff, but biting into a chunk of mango?  Naw.

I definitely wasn’t about to peel and cut up a mango, so I took the lazy and more expensive route and skipped that step.

This recipe is seriously as simple as cut up some shit and toss it into a blender.  I mean, it really doesn’t get any easier than that, especially when you’re lazy and buy as much stuff pre-chopped as possible.

It took me probably 10 minutes to make this, including setting up the blender and chopping the ingredients.  It really smelled and looked good, so I had high hopes that it would also taste good.

I am pleased to say, it is DELICIOUS and I did not feel like I was going to gag on a mango!  YAY!

Such a light and refreshing treat for these warm Texas days.  I had some of it on pork rinds then turned it into a lunch by rolling some into turkey and cheese.

This also made a huge jar of salsa and I am looking forward to enjoying a little of it here and there and mostly seeing Stuart enjoy it, since I typically don’t eat fruit and tomatoes anymore.

Do you like mango?  Do you make homemade salsas?  This is a great variety!

Eat Happy: Broccoli Dip

Hi there.  Welcome back! We’re doing a weekly series that publishes every Tuesday wherein we are cooking through one of our FAVE cookbooks : Eat Happy! If you missed the intro post you can click on over here to read that.

We are starting with the very first recipe and working our way all the way through to the end. We will not be sharing with you the actual recipes that we cook. We WILL be sharing our experience during the whole process and our opinion of the outcome. So thanks for stopping by…and let’s dive in to this week’s recipe shall we?


Sooo this week I made Anna’s Broccoli Dip, and let me just tell you that liking broccoli is not required to like this dip. Cause ya know…per usual – I don’t really care for broccoli. It’s honestly really just a texture thing. All those little balls… I just don’t care for a bunch of tiny balls in my mouth. It reminds of grits. I never like grits for that very reason.

But yeah – enough ball talk. Let’s get to the dip!

Dips are my fave. I love a dip. I could eat a dip for an entire meal. In fact, I did that with this dip.

I did have some mishaps while making this dip which actually have nothing to do with the dip itself, just me needing to get my life together. Want to indulge me and let me rant for a bit? I mean. Thank goodness this is a one sided conversation, because I’m gonna do it anyway. 😉

  • Obviously this is Wednesday…and these posts are supposed to go up on Tuesdays. Can we say blogger fail?
  • Broccoli seriously stinks when you steam it. Like my whole house smelled terrible. HOWEVER, I am super glad it stunk because I went to throw out the offending left over broccoli florets and remembered that I had forgotten to take the trash to the curb! So I mean, thank you Anna for helping me to remember to get that full trash can out.
  • Instead of pre mincing my shallot before throwing it in the food processor, I just threw it in there and let the food processor do the work. People. Then my house smelled like raw onion and steamed broccoli. Not a great combination. I lived through it though and got a delicious dip as a result.
  • Prior to getting this post up, I got hit with one of those “throw everything out, clean everything up” moods. Like, I couldn’t function unless I went through the fridge and pantry, mopped my floors, got all the sheets and blankets stripped from the bed for washing….etc. I almost slipped and busted my ass on my freshly mopped floors. So that was fun.

So ANYWAY – despite all those things I made it here to my computer with the most yummy broccoli dip I have ever tasted. I had planned on sharing this with my mom….but it may not make it to work tomorrow. Sorry mom! 🙂

It’s super easy to whip up. Mine turned out more green than the one pictured in Eat Happy, but I kind of like it that way. I thought about how it would make a cute festive Christmas Holiday dip since it was so green. I also added some chili flakes to the top for a little more heat. As Anna suggested in Eat Happy, this dip would be great with fresh veggies, but all I had on hand were pork rinds which are also serving as the perfect vessel for this dip!

So good.  You guys so need to purchase this book and make this dip! It is seriously yummy and seriously good for you. Why? Cause: no sugars and no grains! 🙂 🙂

Thanks for stopping by today!


If you want to read through our other Eat Happy posts…I’ve got them all lined up for ya!

Eat Happy: Goat Cheese Stuffed Mini Peppers

Eat Happy: Kale Chips & Deviled Eggs with Greek Yogurt

Eat Happy: Cheese Biscuits

Eat Happy: Sausage Stuffed Mushroom

Eat Happy: Tzatziki Dip & Almond Meal Pita Chips

Eat Happy: Super Guac! & Smoked Salmon w/ Coconut Flour Blini

Eat Happy: Prosciutto Wrapped Peaches & Cheese Crisps

Eat Happy: Goat Cheese Stuffed Mini Peppers

 
Welcome back to our Tuesday post, where we share our experience with cooking through the best cookbook on earth: Eat Happy! If you missed the intro post you can click on over here to read that.

We are starting with the very first recipe and working our way all the way through to the end. We will not be sharing with you the actual recipes that we cook, because you should be buying the book to support the author.  However, we will be telling you about our experience with the process, as well as our opinion of the outcome.  Let’s do this.

I was really excited to do this recipe.  I love cheesy anything and love working with mini peppers.  I underestimated this simple little gem though.

As usual, I had grocery shopping misadventures when preparing for this recipe.  There were NO regular bags of mini peppers left like I usually buy.  There was ONE bag of organic, which doesn’t have as many peppers but I had to just roll with it.  It left me wondering though, what in the fuck is happening mid-March that everyone needs peppers?!

After a WalMart, a Target, and a local grocery store, I still couldn’t find the specific goat cheese the recipe requires.  I had to stop in the grocery store to look up what’s so special about that cheese.  I discovered that it’s made creamy like a spread, instead of crumbled like the one I could find.  I decided to just roll with it.

The cheese was a little difficult to get into the peppers and had just as much all over my countertop, but it was fine.  They smelled absolutely DIVINE while they were cooking!

I didn’t realize until I pulled them out of the oven that I forgot fresh herbs, so I foraged around in my spice cabinet and emerged with my finest dried parsley.

Absolutely could not stop eating these and had to force myself to save 3 for Stuart to try.  100% will be making these again…soon.

Eat Happy: Cheese Biscuits

Hi there.  Welcome back! We’re doing a weekly series that publishes every Tuesday wherein we are cooking through one of our FAVE cookbooks : Eat Happy! If you missed the intro post you can click on over here to read that.

We are starting with the very first recipe and working our way all the way through to the end. We will not be sharing with you the actual recipes that we cook. We WILL be sharing our experience during the whole process and our opinion of the outcome. So thanks for stopping by…and let’s dive in to this week’s recipe shall we?

This recipe is also made to where you can make cheese straws, which are a good ole southern tradition, but I did not have time for an extra step so I went with a good ole biscuit shape.

I hate, hate, hate grating or shredding cheese but I avoid the extra fillers in most shredded cheese if I can manage taking 5 extra minutes to do it myself.  I also happened to already have block cheese and it needed to be finely shredded, so I just went for it with my hand grater.

When I got the dough ready, I was 100% convinced that it was not done correctly and I had to just roll with what I had going on.  It was much wetter than anticipated.  These bitches smelled AMAZING while cooking.  The kids were just watching the oven, waiting for them to be ready.

When they came out, I was a little confused over how flat they were, but upon looking in a Facebook group where most of the members cook from this book, I realized that wasn’t uncommon.  The most common solution seems to be to add more almond flour, which I will try next time.

And there will be a next time, like probably tomorrow… the kids woofed them down in 30 seconds and begged for more.  Easy and delicious and they will make the perfect addition to a lot of our regular meals.