Tag Archives: Food

200th Post about 200 Things About Me

30 Apr

Well here I am at my 200th post. Crazy to think that a lack of employment and a need to complain about life has gotten me here. And by ‘here’ I mean about as broke and weird as I was when I started this, but now with a job that makes me wake up early (I understand that 8 o’clock isn’t really early, but I still hate it)

I decided to celebrate my 200th post by posting 200 random things that haven’t made it into posts and probably never will, but are still pretty significant parts of my life. Included in that are: websites I love, things in general that I hate, places I want to go to, favorites, a bunch of weird stuff.

So check out my list of 200 Erica Things:

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Try This: Easy, Grilled Dinner

30 Mar

Tonight was a tricky night for dinner for Alex and me. It’s Thursday, which is the best day of the week (30 Rock, Community, Swamp People… you get the picture), but it’s also a very, very, very crazy week at work so I’ve been stuck at the office fairly late.

Considering that I love Thursdays so much I really wanted to cook a nice dinner, but I needed to find something that was very quick (my Thursday shows start at 8 p.m. AKA way too early) and still very cheap. So a little searching on the FoodNetwork.com and I found my answer.

It may be a little bit cold for the spring time in New Jersey, but we still decided to celebrate the season and do some grilling. Peeled, raw, extra large shrimp were on sale at the grocery store, and I almost never eat shrimp for dinner, so Alex and I decided to make Bobby Flay’s Gambas al Ajillo. My favorite vegetable in the world, asparagus, is in season so I knew we had to make that too.  I have been dreaming about grilled asparagus wrapped in prosciutto, and once again I turned to my main man Bobby Flay.

Now if you’re having a fancy dinner party or something lavish, stick to Bobby’s recipe word-for-word. If you’re like me and are not trying to buy a million ingredients, simply take your asparagus, snap off the ends, toss them lightly in olive oil, salt and then wrap 3 pieces together in one piece of prosciutto and grill for about 15 minutes. We threw some french fries into the oven as well, but you don’t really need them. Take the fries off the plate and you still have a very full plate! They didn’t really get eaten because everything else was so insanely delicious.

Voila, a dinner that took maybe 25 minutes tops. Give it a try!

Super Easy, Super Quick Craft: My Cheap But Fantastic Valentine’s Gift

11 Feb

Alex and I have decided not to do anything too crazy on Valentine’s Day. We are going away next weekend and we really wanted to save money, so we’re not going overboard on a holiday on the worst day of the week… a Tuesday.

My problem? I love giving gifts. It’s why I love holidays. Oh gosh it’s my favorite thing. So I decided to go out and make a cheap and easy gift for him. My boss told me about this online company called Chocomize, which allows you to build your own chocolate bar with really crazy ingredients like gold flakes and rose pedals and all sorts of crazy spices. Alex loved the site, but he wanted to use his favorite candies, like Nerds, Sour Patch Kids and SweeTarts. The kid loves candy.

So this morning I went out to the craft store and got meltable milk chocolate, then headed over to Five Below to pick out his favorite candies. The chocolate cost about $2 and each box of candy cost around $.89, so it came to about $7 for a gift.

If you’re a candy maker, you might already have a mold to make a chocolate bar, or if you wanted to go out and buy one go ahead, but I decided to save three bucks and use the lid to a small shoe box that I had (from those amazing Target flats I blogged about a week ago). I took the lid and wrapped it in wax paper, then taped the sides down on the underside and voila! A free candy mold!

Next step is melting the chocolate and getting all of your candies ready. Pour the bag of chocolate into a microwave-safe bowl and microwave for intervals of 30 seconds, stirring every time. This takes a lot faster than you would think. For me it took around 2 minutes to get everything completely microwaved, and in that time I had opened all of the candy and gotten it ready. This is actually more important than you’d think: You don’t want the chocolate to harden before you can get the candy in.

Pour the melted chocolate into your mold. To make sure it was all even in the mold, and to get the bubbles out of the chocolate I tapped it against the counter a couple of times. You’ll see the bubbles rise to the surface and then pop! Then comes the fun part: the candy! Just go nuts. How am I supposed to explain how to decorate, it’s all up to you! This bar of chocolate is pretty huge: it used up one full box of Nerds, a bag of Pop Rocks, Spree, Sour Patch Kids and SweeTarts. AKA Alex’s fantasy candy bar.

Pop the candy bar in the fridge for 10 minutes or so, unmold and you’re done! You can put anything into this so that it matches whoever you want to give it to. They also have a ton of other melting chocolates. I almost went with a dark chocolate mint, since Alex loves anything mint chocolate chip, but I figured it wouldn’t go with all of the candies, so I stuck with milk chocolate, but the world is yours! After refrigerating this project took me about 15 minutes. Seriously. And it only cost me $7! It took longer for me to write this post than it did for me to make this gift, and I’m completely thrilled with it. I can’t wait to give it to him, it’s absolutely perfect.

Happy Valentine’s Day!