Healthy and Sane

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Breaking in the kitchen

February 28th, 2010 · 22 Comments · dessert, Ellie Krieger, pasta, salad, The Best Light Recipe cookbook

Thank you all for being patient with me over the past few days. I really needed to take a little time off to organize the new kitchen and enjoy all the fun activities we had planned for the weekend. I took so many pictures and have so much to share with you. I decided to start with my very first (real) meal in the new kitchen. I think it was a great success! :mrgreen:

I really wanted my first meal to be elaborate. I wanted to spend hours in the kitchen- chopping, mixing, stirring, baking. When my parents in law mentioned they wanted to come visit us this Sunday to see our new kitchen, Adam and I agreed it would be a great idea to cook for them. I browsed through cookbooks to find that “perfect” recipe. Oh, how I missed this!

Since dinner was going to take a while to prepare, I knew I wanted dessert to be quick and easy. Ellie Krieger’s almond/cherry chocolate clusters is definitely one of my go-to desserts. The recipe has only 3 ingredients and comes together incredibly fast. The best part – it’s SO delicious. How can it not be – it’s almonds, cherries and chocolate!! :)


Yes, we started our dinner with dessert. That’s my kind of meal! 😉


While I was making the sauce for the lasagna (oops, did I spoil the surprise? 😆 ), Adam decided to open the champagne my PILs brought.


Real champagne this time. 😀

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The bubbles are so pretty 😀


After hours in the kitchen, dinner was finally ready. I loved that I was able to stay in the kitchen the entire time, yet could 100% participate in all the conversation. The new kitchen is definitely perfect for entertaining!


I used this recipe from The Best Light Recipe cookbook for meat & cheese lasagna. I really trust this cookbook – every single thing I’ve made from it was absolutely perfect (read: tastes like the real thing).

I added some mushrooms to the sauce (when adding the tomatoes) and baby spinach (a few minutes before taking it off the stove and adding the basil) for added nutrients and because I like both (and happened to have them on hand). I think even more veggies would be great – they would bulk up the lasagna and add new flavors and textures.


Some whole wheat toasts, drizzled with EVOO and rubbed with garlic made for easy “garlic bread.”


My plate:


The lasagna was SO good! Seriously, this book never disappoints. My father in law considers himself a lasagna connoisseur and he said this was definitely up there with the best lasagna he’s had. Everyone was shocked that this was a “light recipe.” It was so cheesy and hearty!

On the side, I also served everyone with some escarole with pine nuts (another Ellie Krieger’s recipe). This was great as well. Really flavorful and complemented the creamy lasagna perfectly.


This was a fabulous meal if I do say so myself. 😉 I can’t wait for more delicious and healthy eats coming out of our new kitchen!

What would be the first meal you’d make in a new kitchen?

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Short break

February 26th, 2010 · 1 Comment · Uncategorized

Hi guys,

I’m trying to unpack our kitchen into the new space, so I’m taking a few days off blogging. I promise I’ll be back soon! 😀

Have a great weekend!!!

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The big reveal

February 24th, 2010 · 48 Comments · breakfast, dessert, oats, pizza, salad

First of all, thank you guys for your congratulations on my recent promotion. You are so sweet! Second of all……. the kitchen is done, the kitchen is done!!!!!! Man, I was starting to lose it but it is all worth it at the end.

Let’s remind ourselves what the kitchen looked like before:


That hole on the left wall is the opening to the living room.



Oh yeah, 1980’s all the way! 😆

And now the after pics.






Can you see how open it is now to the living room?

It’s looking a little bare right now. I can’t wait to put all of our stuff back in and make it really ours. For now, it just feels like we are in someone else’s (nicer looking) house. 😉 We couldn’t be happier!!

What do you think? How did we do? 😀

I broke out the new stove by making a… wait for it…. frozen pizza! Hehe, we had no groceries and I actually wasn’t sure that the kitchen was going to be done today. It’s been going to be done “today” for over a week now.


TJ’s wild mushroom black truffle flatbread – my favorite!


I had 1/2 of this. Good thing I’m a good wife because I easily could have eaten the whole thing but I left the rest for Adam.


Adam was a good husband too. He brought me cookies that I “urgently” requested. Sometimes a girl just needs cookies. :mrgreen:


I’m just a model of health here today, aren’t I? I figured it was better to satisfy my craving than eat everything else in the house.

The rest of today’s eats…

2 mini cinnamon buns from Holey Donuts


Instant blueberry oats, 1/2 banana, Barney Butter and cherry preserves


Very sweet but oh so good.


Mixed greens, grilled chicken, dried figs, cucumbers, pears and goat cheese


The pear slices were by far the best part of the salad!


Clif Mojo mountain mix bar


Smartfood popcorn clusters


Too much sugar, not enough fruits and veggies. Oh well. Everyday can’t be perfect, right?

We’re taking my parents out to dinner tomorrow night to celebrate my promotion and the new kitchen, so my next post will be a dinner recap (I have a pizza lunch tomorrow at work – not exactly exciting stuff).

The kitchen is done!!!!!! Sorry, I just had to say it one more time. 😎 Weeeeeeee

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