Oh Sweet Basil http://www.ohsweetbasil.com Reinventing Family Dinner Mon, 16 Jan 2017 09:08:00 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Cinnamon Sugar Pretzels http://www.ohsweetbasil.com/cinnamon-sugar-pretzels/ http://www.ohsweetbasil.com/cinnamon-sugar-pretzels/#comments Mon, 16 Jan 2017 09:08:00 +0000 http://developersatwork.com/projects/g2/new-sweetbasil/2009/07/cinnamon-sugar-pretzels.html Cinnamon sugar pretzels are one of our all time favorite snacks or treats. Adults and kids cannot stay out of the bowl. Trust me! ohsweetbasil.com

Cinnamon sugar pretzels are one of our all time favorite snacks or treats. Adults and kids cannot stay out of the bowl. Trust me! Such a simple snack yet so hard to keep your hands out of. These cinnamon sugar pretzels with white chocolate drizzle are the perfect snack for parties or just watching a [...]

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Cinnamon sugar pretzels are one of our all time favorite snacks or treats. Adults and kids cannot stay out of the bowl. Trust me! ohsweetbasil.com

Cinnamon sugar pretzels are one of our all time favorite snacks or treats. Adults and kids cannot stay out of the bowl. Trust me!


Such a simple snack yet so hard to keep your hands out of. These cinnamon sugar pretzels with white chocolate drizzle are the perfect snack for parties or just watching a movie or if Mom really needs a darn treat!

Heaven knows you need at least one simple thing for a party so that you aren’t slaving away in the kitchen day and night and during the party. That’s a mistake I’ve made, working in the kitchen and running around making sure things are good to go instead of enjoying myself.

This is an odd recipe as it’s oil that you’re going to stir into the pretzels and then use the microwave to bake it all in there. It works. I promise, but it is a little weird to pour oil all over something you want to eat.

We like to add a little extra cinnamon sugar right before we drizzle the white chocolate, but don’t stress if you forget. They are wonderful either way.

During the holidays you can easily change up the white chocolate with food coloring to make these even more festive.

Cinnamon Sugar Pretzels

Cinnamon Sugar Pretzels
Author: 
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
 
A simple, quick snack that kiddos will love to help prepare.
Ingredients
  • ⅔ Cup Canola Oil
  • ⅓ Cup Cinnamon Sugar
  • 1 Bag Mini Pretzels
  • 4 oz White chocolate, melted and colored if you so desire.
  • Extra cinnamon sugar for sprinkling
Instructions
  1. Mix the oil and cinnamon sugar together and toss pretzels in it.
  2. Microwave on high for 2 min stirring every 30 seconds until oil is absorbed (sometimes this takes longer and sometimes a little less time).
  3. Lay out on a cookie sheet and sprinkle with more cinnamon sugar.
  4. Let air dry completely and drizzle with white chocolate. Let air dry again and serve!

Churro Pretzels

If you love churros and you love snacking then these churro style pretzels are your new best friend.

Salted Caramel Pretzel Snaps

Have you ever seen that bag of pretzel snappers at Costco? They are so addicting and now you can make them from home! 

Pumpkin Pie Spice Pretzels

It’s never a bad thing to go pumpkin spice, right?

 

 

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Easy Asian Orange Chicken http://www.ohsweetbasil.com/easy-asian-orange-chicken/ http://www.ohsweetbasil.com/easy-asian-orange-chicken/#comments Sun, 15 Jan 2017 09:10:00 +0000 http://developersatwork.com/projects/g2/new-sweetbasil/2009/10/day-two-of-asian-flava-orange-chicken.html This orange chicken is so darn good!! Even our toddler loves it! ohsweetbasil.com

Do you love takeout but can’t find a good one close to your house? Try our Easy Asian Orange Chicken and sit back for a faux takeout meal! I love sauces. I love to dip in sauces or cover meats in sauces etc etc. It’s just so delicious. A few weeks back we hosted my brother [...]

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This orange chicken is so darn good!! Even our toddler loves it! ohsweetbasil.com
Do you love takeout but can’t find a good one close to your house? Try our Easy Asian Orange Chicken and sit back for a faux takeout meal!

I love sauces. I love to dip in sauces or cover meats in sauces etc etc. It’s just so delicious. A few weeks back we hosted my brother in law’s birthday bash at our house. It was so much fun and way good food. His family has an “easy Asian orange chicken” recipe that all of the kids just love in the family, but it has nothing orange in it (more on that on Thursday) so I decided to make a real orange chicken. We actually ended up loving both the pretend orange chicken and the real deal so both recipes were keepers!

Our favorite side is not one you’ll be surprised by, Fried Rice of course! We’ve got a few recipes but this particular photo is of our Ham Fried rice and there’s a secret that will make it taste just like your favorite takeout, do you know what it is? Plus there’s a video in the post so check it out!

This recipe was found on a new favorite site, Blog Chef but don’t be overwhelmed by the ingredients list. This recipe is super easy and well worth the list of ingredients!

Easy Asian Orange Chicken

Orange Chicken
Author: 
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
 
This orange chicken is the perfect dish for a family dinner or entertaining a crowd.
Ingredients
  • 2 lbs boneless skinless chicken breasts (cut into 1-1/2” cubes)
  • 1 ½ cups all purpose flour
  • 1 egg (beaten)
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon pepper
  • Oil (for frying)
Orange Sauce
  • 1 ½ cups orange juice and zest from one orange
  • ⅓ cup rice vinegar
  • 2 ½ tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • ½ teaspoon ginger root (minced)
  • ½ teaspoon garlic (minced)
  • 2 tablespoons green onion (chopped)
  • ¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 3 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 2 tablespoons water
Instructions
  1. Combine flour, salt, and pepper. Dip chicken in egg mixture and shake in flour mixture to coat. Deep fry chicken in batches at 375 degrees in a deep fryer (or use a wok) until completely cooked.
  2. Meanwhile, in a large saucepan combine orange juice, rice vinegar, and soy sauce. Blend well over medium heat for a few minutes. Stir in brown sugar, orange zest, ginger garlic, and onion. Bring to a boil.
  3. Combine 3 tablespoons of cornstarch with ¼ cup of water and mix thoroughly. Slowly stir cornstarch mixture into sauce until it thickens. Pour sauce over breaded chicken, and if desired add red pepper flakes.

Baked Sesame Chicken

Oh how we love this saucy, crunchy chicken! It’s just like the one we used to get at a local restaurant!

WonTon Chinese Chicken Salad

I used to love ordering a won ton chicken salad everywhere I went but now I can make it at home!

Asian Crispy Honey Chicken

It’s crispy, juicy and packed with flavor that even the kids love!

 

 

 

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3 Things Every Woman Should Know to Get Fit http://www.ohsweetbasil.com/3-things-every-woman-should-know-to-get-fit/ http://www.ohsweetbasil.com/3-things-every-woman-should-know-to-get-fit/#comments Fri, 13 Jan 2017 09:34:46 +0000 http://www.ohsweetbasil.com/?p=10315 3 Things Every Woman Should Know to Get Fit

3 Things every woman should know to get fit in 2017 and how this woman has lost 92 pounds and is still shooting for more! {I’m so incredibly excited to have Diana from Livy Loves as a guest contributor today. I’ve been following her on instagram for ages and I find her journey so inspiring. [...]

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3 Things Every Woman Should Know to Get Fit
3 Things every woman should know to get fit in 2017 and how this woman has lost 92 pounds and is still shooting for more!
{I’m so incredibly excited to have Diana from Livy Loves as a guest contributor today. I’ve been following her on instagram for ages and I find her journey so inspiring. I believe in these 3 things every woman should know to get fit and I hope it will be a motivation for all of us to take better care of the bodies we’ve been blessed with. She says it best, it isn’t always easy, but it will be worth it and I know we can learn from her.}
Mom to two kids, married and living in Utah. Diana grew up in Southern California and has lived in Utah for 9 years.  She is a graphic designer and runs a shop online called Livy Love Designs.  She has lost close to 100 lbs in under a year and is getting closer and closer to her ultimate goals.  Diana documents her journey on her blog  and instagram  (@livylovestorun) Twitter  Facebook
In early 2013, I knew that I wanted this to be the year that I lost weight.  I knew that I had so much work ahead of me and the thought often times made me intimidated and unsure of myself.  Once I decided to make the steps to achieve my goal, things started to get easier.  I knew I wanted to lose at least 100 lbs.  I have no formal training in exercise or fitness, I just did what I knew and from there researched more about how our bodes and nutrition works and here I am today.
I started walking everywhere.  I took my two little kids in our double stroller and walked all over my neighborhood each day.  I would walk 2-3 miles and sometimes even more.  I am lucky to have several parks in my area so we would walk to the park and then I’d let my kids play, and then we would walk home.  This started to become something I looked forward to because I loved the way I felt after exercise.  I also incorporated a healthy diet which is very important for successful weight loss.  I cut out all fast food, soda, candy, anything that I could buy in a package from the store that was not healthy.  I started to eat chicken, steamed vegetables, almond milk, tons of water (at least 100 oz a day), fruits, turkey burgers, you know very clean and healthy foods.
Of course, it was difficult in the beginning because my body craved sweets.  However, I believe the reason I was so successful is because I let myself have a a cheat day once a week which held me over when I was having intense cravings. Now that I am 10 months into my journey, I can easily control my cravings much better where I don’t really give in.  It wasn’t always that easy, but over time I realized I needed to decide what I wanted more: healthy lifestyle or gaining weight.

 

 

I wanted to share 3 tips that I have for Women who are trying to lose weight this year.

1.  START SMALL

This is my number one tip! You do not need to be cutting out EVERYTHING bad in your diet at first. I feel like if you do, you will only set yourself up for failure.  If you are a diet coke drinker and drink at least 5-6 cans a day, but want to change your habits this is what I recommend.  Try and limit it, to 1-2 a day.  Gradually over time, if you stick with it, your body will get used to the change, but if you take it all away at once, you will be more likely to give up.  In the beginning of my journey, I ate really well, every day of the week except Saturdays.  I worked out Saturday morning, weighed in for the week, then had my cheat day.

I let myself still eat those tasty things that I loved! Over time, it got easier to control my cravings for my cheat day.  Now that I have done for a lot longer, I only give myself 2-3 cheat days a month.  I don’t need it anymore like I used to! I started small in the beginning and now have weaned myself off high calorie food.

2. Count your Calories

I know that some people don’t really like this, but if you are just beginning and need some guidance this is free and easy and will help you.  I still count my calories every single day, even when I cheat.  I am far less likely to cheat OVERBOARD if I still count those calories.  I eat 1300 a day which you may think isn’t that much, but I am still trying to lose weight and all those calories are pretty healthy so I eat quite a bit.  I use My Fitness Pal app on my phone which is free.  It will ask you how much you want to lose and by when and will help you calculate how much you should be eating a day.  This tool really has been a huge reason why I have been so successful.

3. Set Goals

Once I started setting goals for myself, that is when I really changed my thinking and weight started coming off.  In February of last year, I could maybe run for 1 minute straight. That’s a huge maybe.  I knew that I wanted to be a runner, but walking was a good workout for me but over time I just built up my endurance.

In June, I signed up for a 5k and was terrified! I could walk 4-5 miles a day no problem, but running 3.1 miles was so scary to me.  My 5k was in August and once I signed up I trained for it.  I ran the entire 5k in 38 minutes which was way below my goal.  The night after my 5k, I signed up for a half marathon in October.  I just kept setting goals for myself.  The next day, I started to train and it was the best thing I ever did for myself during this journey.

My endurance grew leaps and bounds.  Just 6 months before that, I could barely run for 1 minute and then I was now running 10 miles on Saturday mornings.  It just showed me that my brain was telling me that I couldn’t do it, but my body was.  I definitely had to change my thinking and believe in myself.  I want people to know that YOU CAN DO IT! It will not happen over night or in a month, but over time you will see your body change.

Now I have lost 92 lbs, I have lost over 40 inches combined on my waist and hips (I have started to lose count) and went from a size 20 to a size 10.  I am so honest and open about my journey because I have fallen in love with taking care of my body and I want others to feel the same.

I had so many excuses: two kids under 3, a husband gone at work all day, a busy shop owner, and just basically tired at the end of the day.  However, I wanted this for myself more than I could possibly express and I made it happen.  I just want to encourage other women to know that if you want this, you can and will attain it if you change your life around.  You do not need pills, wraps, fad diets, nothing that’s not long lasting.  Just hard work and dedication.

When I first started, mentally I was afraid and scared to start this because I didn’t know if I was ready to make these life long changes.  Food was such a comfort to me that I didn’t really want to give it up.  I knew that if I didn’t, I would just be more unhappier. It was a really hard transition, but I have made it though and feel like now I can accomplish all my goals.  For the first 6 months, I was not sure I could really do this and still doubting myself because I still craved my old ways, but kept going because I believed that it could only get better.  The more I changed my body, the more I changed my mind.

I’ve included photos of some meals that I eat.  They are very basic items that anyone can eat.  I am a very picky eater but have found things that I like and have stuck with them.  I think one of the best things that has happened during this journey is seeing my kids fight over the carrots and broccoli.  I almost have to laugh because it’s great seeing my kids enjoy healthy and nutritious foods.

 

 

 

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Cheesy Asiago Pretzels http://www.ohsweetbasil.com/cheesy-asiago-pretzels-recipe/ http://www.ohsweetbasil.com/cheesy-asiago-pretzels-recipe/#respond Thu, 12 Jan 2017 09:36:26 +0000 http://www.ohsweetbasil.com/?p=15698 asiago cheese pretzels for the perfect hot snack ohsweetbasil.com

Sometimes there’s nothing like hot, cheesy asiago pretzels and a lazy night at home. Or to serve up warm for a holiday or game day party appetizer. When I was in high school there was this awesome breakfast spot that we loved to grab a bite at for lunch. One of my favorites was a [...]

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asiago cheese pretzels for the perfect hot snack ohsweetbasil.com

Sometimes there’s nothing like hot, cheesy asiago pretzels and a lazy night at home. Or to serve up warm for a holiday or game day party appetizer.

When I was in high school there was this awesome breakfast spot that we loved to grab a bite at for lunch. One of my favorites was a cheese log, a bagel stuffed with cheese. For a short amount of time there was one with a little asiago on top instead of in the middle and I instantly fell in love with asiago cheese. When our soft pretzels went crazy last year I decided I just had to make asiago pretzels, and boy were they awesome!

photo by Lori Romney

Why You Should Ditch Valentines Day

Before we get to that, and feel free to skip all of this if you aren’t interested, but Cade and I are coming out with the truth, we don’t like Valentine’s Day. In fact we hate it and want to tell you why you should ditch Valentine’s Day too.

Before I was married I felt like Valentine’s day was either a ton of pressure or singles awareness day and no matter which I was experiencing it was not a fun loving holiday. And then the rest of the year gets to go back to normal and no expectations for kindness or expressing love? That my friends, that is ridiculous. So when Cade and I started dating and the subject of the big love day came up we were both kind of relieved to discover that we both felt like we should spend all year expressing love to EVERYONE around us, especially our loved ones instead of just one day of pressure.

Will You Accept Our Challenge? We Dare You!

So here’s your challenge!! Will you accept it? For the next 30 days will you take a moment every day to express love to those around you? You can be a little more kind at the grocery store, turn off the tv and play a game with your kids, leave a kind note, etc. Nothing extravagant is needed, “moments are the molecules that make up eternity” as Neal A. Maxwell says.

So do we totally ditch Valentine’s Day? Of course not, because it’s another opportunity to express love.

We will post ideas every now and again on our Facebook and Instagram Page so make sure you’re following along!

Today was one of those days that I totally could have used cheesy carbs too. Or at least soft pretzels dipped in this killer cheese sauce. The kids were so busy playing, which was awesome, except that I was trying to get the house picked up and as soon as I finished upstairs I headed downstairs to attack the kitchen. Things were going pretty good, I was getting the dishes put away (I am pretty sure I do a gazillion loads of dishes a day) when I heard a loud bang.

I quickly discovered that the littles had pulled every blanket we own into their room where they were playing with ALLLLLL of their barbies and accessories in their “fort”. And there’s a lot of barbie junk, I promise you that. UUUUUUGGGGGGGGGHHHHH. I know that one day I’ll be older and the quiet, clean house will make me sad and miss their little voices but for now, can’t I just have a clean house for one whole minute? The good news, they are wonderful to help clean up, the bad news, it took an extra hour to get it all put away. Oh the joys of motherhood.

Cheesy Asiago Pretzels

Asiago Pretzels
Author: 
Recipe type: snack, appetizer
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 8
 
Soft asiago cheese pretzels
Ingredients
  • 1½ cups warm water
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 2½ teaspoons active dry yeast
  • 3½ tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 4½ cups all-purpose flour
  • 6 Cups Water
  • ⅔ Cup Baking Soda
  • 1 Egg yolk + 1 tablespoon water
  • Sea Salt For Topping
  • 1 cup asiago cheese, grated
Instructions
  1. Combine the water and sugar in a standing mixing bowl and sprinkle the yeast on top. allow to sit for 10 minutes, until the mixture begins to foam and grow. add the butter and stir to combine.
  2. add the flour and salt together and whisk to combine. pour in the liquid and use the dough hook attachment to mix on low speed until all of the ingredients are combined. increase the mixer speed to medium and knead until the dough is smooth and pulls away from the side of the bowl, about 4 to 5 minutes.
  3. remove the dough from the mixer and place it in a clean, oiled bowl. cover with a kitchen towel and place in a warm spot until the dough has doubled in size, about an hour.
  4. preheat the oven to 450 degrees. line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper and drizzle with a little oil.
  5. fill a large pot with water and the baking soda. bring the mixture to a rolling boil.
  6. meanwhile, place the dough on a slightly oiled counter and divide into 8 equal pieces. roll out each piece of dough into a 24-inch rope, lay it on the counter, then holding each end in a hand make a u-shape with the rope, cross them over each other, bring it down, twist, and press onto the bottom of the u in order to form a pretzel. place onto the parchment-lined baking sheet.
  7. drop the pretzels into the boiling water, 1 or 2 at a time for about 30 seconds, constantly spooning the hot water over the dough. remove them from the water using a large, flat spatula and place right on the oiled baking sheet. brush the top of each pretzel with egg wash and sprinkle with coarse salt.
  8. bake about 10 minutes, pull the pan out and sprinkle with asiago cheese, then bake an additional 2 minutes. Transfer to a cooling rack for at least 5 minutes before serving.
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 1 Calories: 366 Fat: 9.5g Carbohydrates: 56 Sugar: 1.9 Sodium: 680.7mg Fiber: 2.2 Protein: 12.9 Cholesterol: 23mg

Perfect Pretzels 

Cheese Stuffed Pretzels

Jalapeno Cheddar Pretzel Dogs

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Pepperoni Bagel Bites Pizzas http://www.ohsweetbasil.com/pepperoni-bagel-bites-pizzas-recipe/ http://www.ohsweetbasil.com/pepperoni-bagel-bites-pizzas-recipe/#comments Wed, 11 Jan 2017 09:55:42 +0000 http://www.ohsweetbasil.com/?p=22405 Listen, I'm not too fancy to admit that one of my favorite things as a kid were Pepperoni Bagel Bites Pizzas, and now we make them at home! ohsweetbasil.com

Listen, I’m not too fancy to admit that one of my favorite things as a kid were Pepperoni Bagel Bites Pizzas, and now we make them at home! It’s a blast from the past and I’m feelin’ good! When I was a tween my mom and dad drug us to Costco one Saturday and unfortunately I [...]

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Listen, I'm not too fancy to admit that one of my favorite things as a kid were Pepperoni Bagel Bites Pizzas, and now we make them at home! ohsweetbasil.com

Listen, I’m not too fancy to admit that one of my favorite things as a kid were Pepperoni Bagel Bites Pizzas, and now we make them at home!

It’s a blast from the past and I’m feelin’ good! When I was a tween my mom and dad drug us to Costco one Saturday and unfortunately I had not yet learned how glorious Costco is so it seemed like nothing but a chore. I can literally picture the frozen foods aisle in my head.

Now I must back up a moment, there are 5 of us kids and we were spread incredibly far apart in ages. Like, super far apart. My parents really struggled with infertility and I was their miracle baby after they were told they would never have more children. The middle child truly is the best, right? Anyway, two more miracles showed up after me and poor mom must have been so tired chasing after all of us.

Walking down the aisle my mom suddenly told my brother, sister and I would could each pick out something and our eyes became so big with excitement. I chose mozarella sticks, my brother chose pizza rolls and my sister, bagel bites. All three ended up being delicious and I’ve totally got to work my way through them each on the blog.

Cade and I are always trying to think up new ways to use our famous Pizza Sauce and when I passed by the mini bagels at the store I knew immediately that this pepperoni bagel bites pizzas recipe was meant to be.

Make our pizza sauce, open up the bagels, spread a little sauce and top with cheese. We buy bulk mozzarella, shred it up and freeze it in ziplocs. Then we use the pepperoni sticks, chopped into chunks because with that thick bagel bread you need the meat to be a little more substantial.

The really important part though, you can freeze these! We place them all on a big cookie sheet and pop them in the freezer for a couple of hours or over night then seal them up in freezer bags. When you’re ready to eat them just stick them on a pan in the oven and bake until done. I love quick and easy and especially freezer meals!

5.0 from 1 reviews
Pepperoni Bagel Bites Pizzas
Author: 
Recipe type: appetizer
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 24 halves
 
Little mini bagels turned into pizzas that are easy to freeze, perfect for appetizers or snacks and even dinner!
Ingredients
  • 1 Package Mini Bagels
  • Our Favorite Pizza Sauce
  • 1 Pepperoni Stick, cut in small chunks about ¼"
  • 2 Cups Mozzarella Cheese, shredded
  • 1 Teaspoon Italian Seasoning
Instructions
  1. Heat the oven to 450 degrees.
  2. Make the pizza sauce or buy your own.
  3. Open each bagel and lay it on the cookie sheet. Spread a little sauce, about one spoonful on each bagel. Sprinkle cheese over each bagel and top with pepperoni. Repeat for all bagels. Sprinkle a pinch of Italian seasoning over everything and bake for a few minutes or until the cheese is hot and bubbly.
Notes
To freeze, place the pizzas on a cookie sheet and pop them in the freezer for 2-3 hours. Remove to freezer bags and store in the freezer until you need a snack or quick lunch. You can also pop them in the microwave and then in a thermos for hot pizza school lunch!

 

Perfect Pizza Sauce

Pepperoni Pizza

Pizza Pasta Salad

Pepperoni Pizza Cups

Pepperoni Pizza Burger

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Healthy Wild Blueberry Cottage Cheese Pancakes http://www.ohsweetbasil.com/healthy-wild-blueberry-cottage-cheese-pancakes-recipe/ http://www.ohsweetbasil.com/healthy-wild-blueberry-cottage-cheese-pancakes-recipe/#comments Tue, 10 Jan 2017 09:44:46 +0000 http://www.ohsweetbasil.com/?p=22146 Sometimes you just need a big pile of pancakes and these healthy wild blueberry cottage cheese pancakes will fill your belly but not your waistline. ohsweetbasil.com

Sometimes you just need a big pile of pancakes and these healthy wild blueberry cottage cheese pancakes will fill your belly but not your waistline. Growing up I was pretty die hard french toast. My Uncle Richard taught me to do maple syrup, homemade of course and then a dusting of powdered sugar which is [...]

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Sometimes you just need a big pile of pancakes and these healthy wild blueberry cottage cheese pancakes will fill your belly but not your waistline. ohsweetbasil.com

Sometimes you just need a big pile of pancakes and these healthy wild blueberry cottage cheese pancakes will fill your belly but not your waistline.

Growing up I was pretty die hard french toast. My Uncle Richard taught me to do maple syrup, homemade of course and then a dusting of powdered sugar which is probably why I ended up with a few cavities but I forgive him. 😉 Once Cade and I got married we started experimenting with breakfast recipes and ended up with our Saturday morning hot breakfast tradition.

Most often it’s crepes, Cade’s nutella crepes to be exact but we also love our melt in your mouth buttermilk pancakes recipe that you’ll see by the comments, it’s the best in the entire world. Seriously.

The problem is, I don’t want to always be packing in the calories with heavier breakfasts so with all of this cottage cheese pancake craze I set out to make a healthier pancake.

We pulse oats in a blender to make our flour. Then you just add in everything but the fruit and blend away!

We chose to use the low fat cottage cheese and don’t notice any difference in flavor at all. It’s got great protein, light, and those wild berries take it from delicious to farm to table fresh deliciousness! That’s a mouthful. Awkward. 

Healthy Wild Blueberry Cottage Cheese Pancakes

5.0 from 2 reviews
Healthy Wild Blueberry Cottage Cheese Pancakes
Author: 
Recipe type: pancakes, breakfast, healthy
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 8-10 pancakes
 
A lighter pancake and it's all made in the blender!
Ingredients
  • 1⅓ Cup Old Fashioned Oats
  • 1 Cup Cottage Cheese
  • 1 Dash of Vanilla
  • 1 Tablespoon Sugar
  • 4 Egg Whites
  • 1 Large Egg
  • 2 Teaspoons Baking powder
  • ¼ Teaspoon Salt
  • 1½ Cups Wild Blueberries, fresh or frozen
Instructions
  1. In a blender, pulse the oats until they are a fine flour.
  2. Add all remaining ingredients except the blueberries. Pulse until just smooth, do not over blend!
  3. Remove to a bowl and fold in the berries.
  4. Heat a griddle over medium heat and spray with nonstick spray. Scoop ⅓ cup batter onto the pan and cook until bubbles appear and begin popping then flip and cook until golden.
  5. Serve with maple syrup.
  6. Store any leftovers in a ziploc bag in the fridge.

 

Melt in Your Mouth Buttermilk Pancakes

Whole Wheat Buttermilk Pancakes

Buttermilk Syrup

Meyer lemon Syrup

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20 Minute Cheesy Pesto Pasta http://www.ohsweetbasil.com/20-minute-cheesy-pesto-pasta-recipe/ http://www.ohsweetbasil.com/20-minute-cheesy-pesto-pasta-recipe/#respond Mon, 09 Jan 2017 09:02:43 +0000 http://www.ohsweetbasil.com/?p=23197 Need dinner on the table in 20 minutes? We've got a 20 minute cheesy pesto pasta recipe that's quick and easy to make and it's a great special diets recipe. ohsweetbasil.com

Need dinner on the table in 20 minutes? We’ve got a 20 minute cheesy pesto pasta recipe that’s quick and easy to make and it’s a great special diets recipe. If you’ve got a need for vegetarian or gluten free recipes this is a great dinner option. You can add chicken to make it a heartier [...]

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Need dinner on the table in 20 minutes? We've got a 20 minute cheesy pesto pasta recipe that's quick and easy to make and it's a great special diets recipe. ohsweetbasil.com

Need dinner on the table in 20 minutes? We’ve got a 20 minute cheesy pesto pasta recipe that’s quick and easy to make and it’s a great special diets recipe.

If you’ve got a need for vegetarian or gluten free recipes this is a great dinner option. You can add chicken to make it a heartier dish, but it’s actually really fantastic with just grape tomatoes. Heck, you could even throw in chopped zucchini which would also be yummy. In fact, I think I will next time.

Gluten free is easy as well, just use gluten free pasta or zucchini noodles (also known as zoodles). We love any way to use up zucchini come the summer months.

Our favorite way to serve pesto pasta is actually straight from the pan. I know, that doesn’t seem very classy, but the pan is sizzling hot and to bring it out and serve it straight into bowls really is so fun and it keeps everything fresh and fragrant versus putting it into a cold serving bowl.

We started with our Classic Pesto recipe. It’s our favorite and I think it’s the toasted garlic that really takes things over the top. We actually add a little more to the pasta as well. it’s ridiculous, but true. Garlicky, cheesy noodles are kind of awesome.

Speaking of the cheese, we keep it simple with a cup of shredded low moisture, part skim Mozzarella, but you could certainly use fresh Mozzarella, you just have to be mindful of the water. Low Moisture Mozzarella is packaged like normal cheese and is a drier variety, whereas fresh mozzarella is packaged with the water and a little of that water is going to come out in the cooking, which with pasta can make things a bit gloopy with the pesto.

I don’t know how healthy pesto pasta is considering that you dump a full cup of cheese in there, but it’s certainly better for you than a lot of other dishes out there. It’s fresh, simple and a really fast pasta to serve as a main dish.

20 Minute Cheesy Pesto Pasta

20 Minute Cheesy Pesto Pasta
Author: 
Recipe type: Pasta, main dish
Cuisine: Italian
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4
 
Need dinner on the table in 20 minutes? We've got a 20 minute cheesy pesto pasta recipe that's quick and easy to make and it's a great special diets recipe.
Ingredients
  • ½ Teaspoon Olive Oil, Extra Virgin
  • 1 clove Garlic Minced
  • 1 pound Angel Hair Pasta
  • 1¼ Cup Pesto (Prepared)
  • 1 Cup Mozzarella, Shredded, Low Moisture, Part Skim
  • 2 Cups Grape Tomatoes, Halved
  • ½ Teaspoon Black Pepper
Instructions
  1. Prepare the pesto according to the recipe provided.
  2. Prepare the pasta according to package instructions.
  3. In a large skillet, over medium heat, add the oil and garlic and stir continually until fragrant, about 20 seconds.
  4. Turn the skillet down to medium low heat.
  5. Drain the pasta, and add quickly to the skillet along with the pesto, and grape tomatoes. Give everything a quick toss and add the cheese, tossing the noodles with tongs.
  6. Serve the pasta and top with a fresh crack of black pepper.
Notes
Gluten free pasta or zucchini noodles can be used in place of pasta.
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 1 cup

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Pesto Meatball Panini

Toasted bread, juicy meatballs, fantastic marinara and pesto and gobs of cheese make the ultimate sandwich.

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Tender Slow Cooker Whole Chicken http://www.ohsweetbasil.com/crock-pot-roast-chicken/ http://www.ohsweetbasil.com/crock-pot-roast-chicken/#comments Sun, 08 Jan 2017 09:00:00 +0000 http://developersatwork.com/projects/g2/new-sweetbasil/2011/11/crock-pot-roast-chicken.html This is the easiest way to enjoy a juicy, rotisserie like chicken by only using a crockpot. Slow cooker whole chicken that anyone can make! ohsweetbasil.com

This is the easiest way to enjoy a juicy, rotisserie like chicken by only using a crockpot. Slow cooker whole chicken that anyone can make! This slow cooker whole chicken is dedicated to all of my favorite friends that claim that they can’t cook (Heidi). I bet you a million dollars that this will turn [...]

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This is the easiest way to enjoy a juicy, rotisserie like chicken by only using a crockpot. Slow cooker whole chicken that anyone can make! ohsweetbasil.com
This is the easiest way to enjoy a juicy, rotisserie like chicken by only using a crockpot. Slow cooker whole chicken that anyone can make!

This slow cooker whole chicken is dedicated to all of my favorite friends that claim that they can’t cook (Heidi). I bet you a million dollars that this will turn out perfect for you.

This chicken was so tender that I could not even lift it out of the crock. Can you see where I tried and the chicken totally fell apart? I’m serious, I finally lifted it out and all that was left was a pile of bones. The bones were no longer in the carcass shape either.


The chicken is delicious and you could add whatever spices or sauce suits  your fancy. I reaaaaaaaally wanted a rotisserie, but this recipe is seriously just as good. Cross my heart.

I only want to remind you of two things,
1. Defrost your whole chicken the day before. It will take at least all day in the fridge to defrost. You can buy a fresh one if you are too nervous that you wont defrost it all the way.
2. Remove the giblets. Don’t be scared. Just reach in there and pull it out. You don’t want those baked in there.

If you do not have fresh garlic or thyme, don’t run to the store, just use dry thyme and garlic powder. Probably 1 Teaspoon powder.

Slow Cooker Whole Chicken

5.0 from 1 reviews
Crock Pot Roast Chicken
Author: 
Recipe type: main dish
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 1 Whole Chicken
 
An easy, no fuss way to enjoy a flavorful whole roasted chicken that turns out as juicy as rotisserie by only using a crockpot
Ingredients
  • 1 Whole 4-6 lb chicken, giblets removed
  • ½ Teaspoon Fresh Black Pepper
  • ½ Teaspoon Fresh Thyme (or 1 Ts Dried)
  • 1 Clove of Garlic, minced
  • 1 Teaspoon Onion Powder
  • 2 Teaspoon Paprika
  • 2 Teaspoon Kosher Salt
Instructions
  1. Take the whole chicken and rinse it inside and out with water. Pat dry and set aside.
  2. Mix together all of the seasonings in a small dish.
  3. Using your fingers, gently lift the skin over the breasts by sliding your fingers up towards the neck to separate the skin and meat. Rub the spice mixture all over the chicken, over the skin and underneath right onto the breast meat. Place the chicken in a crock pot on low for 8 hours.
  4. Once the chicken is done, remove from the crock pot and serve with potatoes, and veggies. There is plenty of liquid if you wish to make a gravy. Just heat the liquid in a pot and mix a little cornstarch and cold water. Once the liquid is boiling add a little to the cornstarch so it heats it up a bit, and slowly add it to the liquid, whisking vigorously. Season as needed.
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 1 Breast or a few slices of chicken

 

Ham in a Slow Cooker

Did you know you can make a whole ham in the slow cooker?!

Asian Sticky Slow Cooker Ribs

These are the most tender, flavorful ribs and they are cooked in a slow cooker, not the grill!

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6 Thigh Exercises for Thighs Like a Dancer http://www.ohsweetbasil.com/6-moves-for-thighs/ http://www.ohsweetbasil.com/6-moves-for-thighs/#comments Fri, 06 Jan 2017 10:42:08 +0000 http://www.ohsweetbasil.com/?p=10321 thigh workout ohsweetbasil.com

These are my favorite 6 thigh exercises for thighs that are toned and lean. If you want 6 thigh exercises for thighs like a dancer this is it! {All photos taken by the talented Luke Isley. Please check out the amazing dancers on his site. I’m blown away by them} And now onto 6 thigh [...]

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thigh workout ohsweetbasil.com

These are my favorite 6 thigh exercises for thighs that are toned and lean. If you want 6 thigh exercises for thighs like a dancer this is it!

{All photos taken by the talented Luke Isley. Please check out the amazing dancers on his site. I’m blown away by them} And now onto 6 thigh exercises.

We are a fan of trying to be healthy and strong and since starting at Cardio Barre with these lovely trainers above I have noticed that these 6 moves for thighs like a dancer do work and change your legs and glutes completely. I’ve never been so toned and tight and I can’t wait to get it back!

It’s always best to start with a light warm up. you could do a 5 or 1o minute jog, jumping jacks, or just dance to some music. Please consult a dr before doing any of these moves and remember two things:

1~Keeping your bellybutton pulled into your spine will help to strengthen your abs while working out

2~ Don’t worry about height and not being able to do all the reps as much as doing the move the best you can and start with lower reps, pushing as hard as you can until you can move up to all the reps. You’ll get better with time.

Most of us don’t have a barre at home, so whether you do this at the gym with a barre or in your home at the counter top you can still get great results. 

6 Thigh Exercises

Perform this short thigh series 3-6 times a week for beautifully shaped thighs.

1. Straight Leg Extension: 32 reps each side

Place your hands on the counter top or hold onto the barre and while keeping your arms and legs straight, bend over at the waist for a flat back. Lift your left leg straight behind you, toes pointed and belly button to spine. Lift and lower the leg a few inches (do not take your toes to touch the floor, this is a small movement) making sure that you are using your thighs and glutes and not your back to lift. Do 32 reps on each side.

2. Angled Leg Extension : 32 reps each side

Extend your leg out, level with your back, but pointed at the corner of the room so it’s at an angle. Point your toes and pull the bellybutton into your spine. Lift and lower the leg only a few inches for a total of 32 reps (up and down is one rep) on each side.

3. Touch Down Toe Lift: 32 reps each side

 Extend the leg directly behind you and level with your back. Point your toes and pull the belly button to spine then slowly lower the leg until the toe touches the floor and lift back up. 32 reps on each side.

 

 4. Leg Lifts: 32 reps each side

Sit on the mat, leaning back onto your right forearm with your left knee bent, up on your toes next to your bum. Extend the right leg out, point the toe and lift and lower the leg for 32 reps. Repeat on the other side.

5. Flex Foot Leg Lift: 32 reps each side

Sit up tall with your legs straight out in front of you. Stretch your arms toward your toes and then fall over to the floor on the right side so you are bent in half. Flex both feet and lift the top leg up and down for 32 reps then repeat on the other side. Want to really work that outer thigh? Angle your toes down to the ground and lift and lower with food still flexed.

6. Bent Knee Crossover: 32 reps

Bent knee and up on your toes for this one. Cross the other leg back and forth over the shin bone engaging and

working the inner thigh. Pretend like you are playing the violin with your legs. Make sure your toes are pointed and do 32 reps on each side.

More Workouts From Home

 

Ab Workout

No matter what is going on in life everyone can spare ten minutes for a quick ab workout. I especially love this one. 

Glutes Workout

It’s time to get that booty lifted and tight and this is the way I’m going to do it for the next 3 months. 

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The Secret to Ham Fried Rice http://www.ohsweetbasil.com/secret-ham-fried-rice/ http://www.ohsweetbasil.com/secret-ham-fried-rice/#comments Thu, 05 Jan 2017 10:24:56 +0000 http://www.ohsweetbasil.com/?p=10368 You don't have to even leave your kitchen to have restaurant worthy Chinese food. This is the secret to ham fried rice faux takeout style. ohsweetbasil.com

You don’t have to even leave your kitchen to have restaurant worthy Chinese food. This is the secret to ham fried rice faux takeout style. My mom is probably a lot like your mom, she sacrifices the heck out of everything to make sure that we all have what we need and taking the time to [...]

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You don't have to even leave your kitchen to have restaurant worthy Chinese food. This is the secret to ham fried rice faux takeout style. ohsweetbasil.com

You don’t have to even leave your kitchen to have restaurant worthy Chinese food. This is the secret to ham fried rice faux takeout style.

My mom is probably a lot like your mom, she sacrifices the heck out of everything to make sure that we all have what we need and taking the time to teach us everything she knows so that one day we could walk on our own as kind, contributing citizens. Most of all she just loves us dearly and what more could we want, well other than her cheesy ham and potato bacon bake or busy day casserole?

There’s only two things Mom ever wanted other than the gift of us kids not fighting for one whole day (or nothing at all, as she often said for holidays), and that was hot french fries or a meal at The Great Wall, her favorite restaurant.  I may not know how to recreate her favorite Won Ton soup, but I can help out with the secret to perfect ham fried rice.

Actually there’s a story about Safeway too, but I’ll leave that for the upcoming Sesame Chicken post. And do stay tuned because I believe it turned out pretty fantastic. Anyway, Mom really never asked for anything even if we begged and pleaded, but she would finally speak up around her birthday or anniversary and mention that “mmmmm, that won ton soup at the Great Wall does sound good.” Off we would trek to a little Chinese restaurant  and we would gather around the table to order and look forward to looking at who we were on the Chinese calendar.

I’m the rat. I always hated that. I never thought that the strengths and weakness didn’t really fit me. Do you know what you are on the calendar? You can find out here if you’re curious. I’d love to know what you are and if you think it fits you. But back to the rice, the secret to perfect fried rice is actually to use 1 to 2 day old rice. Trust me, it’s the best way to ensure that your rice absorbs all of that flavor and fries up nicely in the pan. So, start with the rice a day or two ahead (which is why I love that I can use it in one meal, make extra and have my next meal started already) then just cook up some carrots and peas and toss in the chopped ham.

Next, you’ll want to whisk up a little sweetened soy sauce mixture and then once you’ve “fried” your rice in a little oil just add the sauce, stir and the remaining ingredients. Last, sprinkle a little green onion to brighten the whole dish and voila! Now how much do you love that you can make perfect rice by using leftovers?! Get on this recipe my friends. You’ll love it!

The Secret to Ham Fried Rice

 

5.0 from 1 reviews
The Secret to Ham Fried Rice
Author: 
Recipe type: side
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 6-8 servings
 
Ham fried rice and the secret to making it perfect
Ingredients
  • 1½ cups peas
  • 1½ cups carrots, cubed
  • 2 cups ham, chopped
  • 2 eggs
  • 4 cups cooked rice
  • 2 tablespoons oil
  • ⅓ cup soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoons brown sugar
  • ½ teaspoon white sugar
  • ⅛ teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1 pinch crushed red pepper
  • 2 green onions, chopped for garnish
Instructions
  1. to 2 days prior cook your white rice, we prefer Calrose
  2. Steam the carrots and peas and set aside. In a small fry pan add a little oil and heat to medium heat. In a small bowl, lightly whisk together the eggs and add to the pan, lifting and tilting the egg and pan until all of the liquid is touching the pan and cooking and none is sitting on top of the egg. Carefully flip and cook until set. Remove the egg and chop.
  3. In a small bowl, whisk together the soy sauce, sugar, ginger and crushed red pepper. Set aside.
  4. In a large saute pan, over medium heat add the rice and oil, cooking until hot and the rice is beginning to pop. Add the sauce mixture, stirring to combine. Add the eggs, ham, carrots and peas and stir until heated through. Top with green onion and serve immediately.
Notes
Make sure you make your rice at least one day ahead, cool, place in a bag or tupperware in the fridge to store.
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 1 cup

 

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