Category Archives: Drinks
Happy Mother’s Day to all who mother, whether it be baby, cat, plant or friends. I wanted to make a post for Mother’s Day that highlighted a food special to my mom. Here’s the list I made:
- Alphabits Cereal
- Chicken with rice and peas
- Tuna Melts
- People Magazine
- Cow tongue sandwiches (She doesn’t eat these anymore, just when my grandfather made them – back in the day)
So you can see my dilemma. How could I choose from such a list of culinary treats? Jy suggested I fancy up a tuna melt with expensive cheese. Then, it dawned on me. Pineapple Upside Down Cake! My mom has always made this cake, probably because she liked how my grandfather made it too. Honestly though, this cake starts with a box and ends with a jar of maraschino cherries. Which the clerk at Sprouts told me are called “Marsh-i-no cherries.”
My brother reminded me that I used to ask for a Pineapple Upside Down Cake for my birthday and that really annoyed him. Why wouldn’t I just be normal and ask for chocolate? He says he doesn’t know if he just doesn’t like the cake because of how it tastes or because I liked it so much. Only a sibling could dislike a food for the simple reason that it was another sibling’s favorite.
In with something my whole family can agree on….booze!
This drink is cool, fruity and sweet. Perfect for brunch, dessert or anytime you want a slice of cake to sip. You’ll need to start with this:
Iced Cake Smirnoff Vodka. You can also experiment with the whipped cream vodka that’s out there too, it’s from Pinnacle and in a deep blue bottle.
- Equal Parts:
- Iced Cake Vodka
- Orange Juice
- Pineapple Juice
- Club Soda
- Maraschino Cherries if desired
- In a cocktail shaker, mix together vodka and juice.
- Pour over ice and top with soda to lighten flavor, if desired.
- Garnish with Maraschinos.
Happy Cinco de Mayo! Or not, if you are reading this post the other 364 days of the year. We all know delicious margarita recipes, but what about something a little different this time?
Whether you want to make this drink for kids, old folks who can’t handle their booze, those trying to shrink their butt size, your Mormon pals or just people who don’t want alcohol, you is gonna like this. Yes you is. They is too.
Of course you can always add Tequila for a Banana Cadillac Margarita or some Rum for a Banana-Lime-Orange Daiquiri. Don’t be afraid to play with this drink, it won’t bite.
- ⅓ cup orange juice
- 1 cup limeade (Santa Cruz Organics is fantastic)
- ¼ cup simple syrup
- 1 banana
- 1 cup ice
- lime for garnish
- sugar or salt for rimming glass, if desired
- Blend all ingredients together until frothy
- Serve cold
This morning, one of my college roommates posted on Facebook and mentioned Philz Iced Mint Mojito. This was not been the first time she mentioned drinking this style of iced coffee, but it most certainly was the last I could stand reading about it. I wanted one!
Jy is off from work today and offered me time away from the kids, so I could be able to drive and pick up my own coffee at the nearest Philz…28 miles away. If it was a straight shot into Berkeley, I would have gone. Between limited parking, afternoon traffic and a bit of laziness, I opted out.
Doesn’t mean I couldn’t try making my own, right?
I added some sprigs of mint to my spice grinder and loaded my glasses up with mint bits. You can use a pestal, or if you are half Meh-hee-cano like me, a moljacete. However you choose to smash your mint is your own personal beezwax.
There are two ways I currently and yes, snobbishly prefer my coffee. Numero uno is Armenian/Turkish/Greek/Middle Eastern style. The second is through a French Press.
For this drink, a press works perfectly. In addition to filling the bottom of the jar with ground beans, I included a hefty spoonful of coconut sugar. White tastes better, but coconut is less processed. Whatchoo gonna do?
This will be an amazing summer drink, friends. It’s over 80 degrees here today and I’m pretending it is June. Summer. Ahh. Swimming, more grilling, flip-flops, late night walks, day trips, beaches, kids home all day with me.
WHOAH. Reel that back in, sista. Let’s enjoy April while we can. Summer camps are pricey and I don’t have a job.
- strongly brewed coffee
- fresh mint
- sugar to taste
- cream to taste
- brew coffee extra strong – adding sugar to ground beans if desired
- crush mint leaves in glass
- fill glass with extra ice
- slowly pour coffee over mint/ice
- add sugar and cream as desired
Just when I thought it had all been done, I learned about old school coffee. What you are looking at above is Armenian coffee. What makes it Armenian? It was made in a Jazzve, given to me by Lisa. Now, I know what you are thinking….
You KNOW Lisa Whelchel?
No, I don’t. Plus, I’m pretty sure she isn’t Armenian. I tried Googling her nationality and it turns out…she’s, American. Uh, ok. She doesn’t look Native, but whatevs.
I’m talking about the Lisa that I always talk about. You can read more about my wild, stripper-pal Lisa in the following posts. Fine, she’s not a stripper.
Lisa gave me a jazzve. Doesn’t that sound like a band name? You can read more about Jazzve’s at The Armenian Observer. Don’t everyone run over there at once, ok?
If you want the short answer, a jazzve is the most awesome little coffee pot that looks like it should hold creamer. It’s sturdy, it comes in all sizes and it makes coffee smooth and strong enough to kill.
Jazzve’s and all other coffee making pots of this sort are said to work better on gas stoves. But like they say in Kindergarten, “You get what you get, and you don’t throw a fit.”
You know what else they say?
First is worst. Second is best. Third is the one with the treasure chest. Fourth is the one with the hairy chest. Fifth is the one with the Barbie dress.
That’s changed since I was in school. I’m happy to see the word “turd” removed from the rhyme. Way to keep it classy 5 year olds!
Anyway, Lisa says that everyone argues over who created this way of coffee brewing first. I had seen a great Greek Coffee making video on YouTube and apparently, Turkish folks like to call it their own as well. All I can add is, I wish I invented it. It’s awesome!
Here’s what you’ll need to do, once you get your hands on a jazzve. (You can find a link in my amazon store!) You’ll want to use the smallest mugs you have and ideally end up using demitasse cups. (Again, check my amazon store)
- finely ground coffee
- Add 4 ounces of water for every cup you plan to brew, to the pot
- Add 1 heaping teaspoon (use your silverware, not a measuring spoon) for each 4 ounces of water you have added
- If you desire a sweetened coffee, add 1 teaspoon of sugar per 4 ounces of water
- Place your pot over a hot burner and wait a few seconds before stirring the contents
- Put the spoon down!
- Don’t walk away! Wait until you see little baby bubbles forming around the edges of the pot.
- As bubbles form, lift the pot from the heat to settle and then lower back down onto the heat again.
- Repeat until there is a nice set of foamy bubbles covering the coffee. The pot can QUICKLY bubble over, so be careful!
- Gently pour each cup full of coffee and get set for heaven.
I have heard it said that it takes us Californian’s roughly ten days to be sick and tired of winter. I’m a day ahead of the crowd! For those of you in colder climates, I understand how annoying us sunshine state folk are, I really do.
Here is something we can all agree on though, a trip to Hawaii!
I can’t afford to send us all to Hawaii, but I think I can scrape enough money together to maybe ship a shoebox? Not overnight of course, but none the less, it’s going!
While it is a sunny, 40 degree day outside here, I’d love it if some of you would join me for a quick tropical getaway, via smoothie.
To make this tropical smoothie, you’ll need:
- -frozen pineapple
- -kiwis (the fruit, not the people)
- -an apple (optional)
- -coconut cream (optional)
- -coconut or almond milk
Check out these hunka-hunkas I found at today’s farmers’ market!
That is one kiwi, one! I know it might be tough to find sweet kiwi this time of year, but it’s worth it. The father-son duo at the market told me how you can use kiwi to marinate chicken. The enzymes of this fruit break poultry down nicely. Who knew? If you have tried kiwi as a marinade, will you drop me a line? I’d love some tips.
This smoothie was made possible by my Vitamix. Ahh. I topped my cup with some shredded coconut and took a virtual trip to the tropics (without my kids). There is a bit of a peppery flavor to this drink and I’m guessing the kiwi is to blame. Jy and Dallas still loved it and I feel pretty jazzy after sipping mine down too.
Now it’s time for me to go clean. Not sweep and put away laundry clean. This is the big stuff. I’ve been useless the past few days with a killer cold and the three males of the house took that as a sign to fling ape poo, leave toy bombs and let our home go south. Not like beautiful, historic mansion south. Like, Honey Boo-Boo’s poor cousin who hopes to get some of HBB’s TLC money south. Bad, real bad.
There are plenty of pumpkin smoothie recipes to be found, most of them taste somewhere between a spoonful of plain pumpkin puree and plain pumpkin puree with twelve cups of sugar mixed in. Can I challenge you to give my version a whirl? With a good sweetness balance and a thick, creamy texture, this is the closest thing I have found to sucking up a slice of pumpkin pie.
Which, I will be the first to admit, is they way I wish to spend the remainder of fall.
- 2 cups almond milk
- 6 dates (medjool), without seeds
- 2 T. maple syrup (not pancake syrup)
- ½ tsp. pumpkin pie spice
- 1 cup canned pumpkin
- ¼ cup pecan pieces
- 2 handfuls ice
- Blend until smooth
You can find dates in the produce or bulk section of most stores. Don’t buy the dried kind in the raisin aisle, they won’t blend up the same. You need to juicy, brown sugar-like sweetness of the fat guys.
You are also gonna need a super powered blender for this smoothie, like a Ninja, Vitamix or BlendTec. If you don’t have one, try it in your food processor. If you don’t have one of those, go to Target. The pecans and dates will need the power of a major blender to turn into itty bitty chunks (if you have a Ninja) or be pulverized into liquid (Vitamix).
Ooh, guess what?! I can totally stop whining about the camera on my phone now. I found its secret features, that help take much, much better photos. Check it.
We are in serious recovery mode over here after a late in the day trip to the Jelly Belly Factory yesterday. The four of us ate so much sugar, that we couldn’t even drive home without stopping for some type of un-sweetened food to balance our bodies out. Chancing having the tired kids melting down was not much of an option, so we stopped at the first available “food” joint, McDonald’s.
After a couple of naps and some snacks for dinner, my parents came over to see the boys. With ice cream and cones in hand. There were more jelly beans, a taste of pumpkin fudge and a long night ahead.
Both boys woke up crying during the night. Dallas couldn’t get back to sleep for an hour. He had crazy demands he was screaming, like, “I want something to eat, then drink, then a story,then a song, with Daddy.” Jy would try to go to the kitchen, but couldn’t make it out of the room without Dallas screaming for him and flopping around like a fish out of water.
We are trying to slowly come out of our fog today. Having a kitchen full of Jelly Bellys and candy corn hasn’t helped us make a clean escape. I’m off to do some Sunday crafting and cooking, which is what people who are done with their online classes and volunteer positions do! Free time is the best thing I have ever discovered. If you don’t have some, you should totally get some, it is fabulous. Like Max.
Can’t think of turning on the oven? Too hot for the crockpot? Try making a granita! What is a granita? It is Italian for “little old grandma.” I’m lying, it’s not. Granitas are icy, semi-sweet desserts. This treat can be enjoyed any time of the day, but I am digging it for breakfast! This recipe is gluten free and full of healthy stuff. Take a peek!
Almonds: Low in saturated fat, high in Vitamin E, calcium and magnesium, all cancer haters
Chocolate Almond Milk: full of calcium, vitamins A, D & E
Dates: Contain fiber, antioxidants, vitamin A, beta-carotene, iron and potassium
Cocoa Powder: serious antioxidant power (more than acai, blueberries, red wine or green tea)
You could easily keep blending your granita until the chunks of ice are more like specs. I had one kid asleep while I made this and opted for a shorter blender time.
Ok, so you see how the glass in the photo is a big 16 ouncer? You could easily split this shake/icy treat/chunky meal into two servings. You teeny-tiny chicks out there might want to. One Chocolate Almond Granita is 538 calories, which is definitely a meal. I don’t think 500 calories spent on a fulfilling breakfast is awful, as long as you keep the rest of the day in check. I’d be willing to bet a shot or two of espresso might bump this recipe up a notch too!
Here’s the other part that may of may not freak you out. This has 39 grams of fat. WAIT, wait! Don’t leave yet. 36 grams are unsaturated, they are your healthy fats you find in avocados and salmon. Just a not for extra measure, fat doesn’t make you fat. In fact, it makes you full!
I should note that this was inspired by Celiacchicks.com who do an unchocolate? version!
Here’s what ya do.
Blend together -
- 1/2 cup raw almonds
- 1 T. unsweetened cocoa powder
- 3/4 cup chocolate almond milk
- 3 pitted dates
- 2 cups ice
It’s Friday, friends! How about a cocktail recipe? I never party it up here on Food It Forward and a rainy, Friday afternoon seems to be the perfect opportunity. Especially a Friday afternoon before taking a toddler to get his photo taken at the mall.
Have you heard of Veev? I held a Veev party last year and taste tested a few mixed drinks with friends, using the Acai infused spirit. One bottle is close to $30, so it isn’t something I would buy often. Luckily, I had a bit left from the party and gave a new recipe a try.
Veev is great for sangria, margaritas, lemonade and now cider!
- 2 part Veev or other acai spirit
- 3 parts apple cider
- 1 part POM
Pour over ice and enjoy Friday along with me! Today is short and sweet, but come back tomorrow for some (extra long) thoughts on wheat. You might want a drink for that post, too. Nothing says party time like wheat!
Days like today, I could really use a DeLorean and 1.21 gigawatts to get back to this morning. My kids sucked my time away like I was a giant Pixie Straw today. If I’m not cooking for them, I’m cleaning up after the cooking or wiping their ketchup chins. They eat all the time, they are always hungry. I can’t believe I don’t have two fat Maury Povich babies. I should be on stage defending myself by saying, “If I don’t give him the Kentucky Fried Chicken, he cries!”
Alas, they are both asleep and I am just now able to sit down and talk to you. Ah, you. Have I told you lately that I love you? When I cook for you, there are no crumbs or sticky condiments to wipe up afterwards. Thank you for not complaining that ___________(insert any food) has little _________(insert any color here) spots or specks. Of course I love my children, but sometimes I wonder if they have a bit of Tasmanian Devil or woodchuck DNA. Well, only Max seems to have the woodchuck tendencies of chewing crunchy fruits or vegetables into little diced bites, before spitting them all back out onto the plate.
We were going to talk about more road trip food today, make that tonight.
The first thing I am always wanting when I hit the road is, a giant coffee. My mind is in vacation mode and has already decided that a Venti mocha is an acceptable road companion. It isn’t until an hour or so later, when the only things I can think of are bathrooms and spin class. While the caffeine and sugar help to pop my sleepy eyes open, they also play games with my nerves, which are stuck in the seated position for the foreseeable future.
What works well? A coffee smoothie! You get the caffeine, but you prevent the crazy rave from visiting your nervous system by adding in some protein. Quick 90210 insert here…
Whenever I talk about raves, I am reminded of the episode of Beverly Hills 90210 (the O.G. of 90210′s) where the kids of West Beverly hit a convenience store to get the secret rave address. They are only privy to the information if they brought the secret prop, an egg. My friend Karla would always giggle about this episode.
- 1 cup cold brewed coffee
- 1 small banana (frozen)
- 1 scoop whey protein powder
- 1 cup chocolate milk (can be almond or other type if desired)
- 1-2 T. creamy peanut butter (depending on your love of the p.b.)
The hardest part of this drink is remembering to freeze the banana the night before. Brew your coffee stronger than you typically drink it. Even better, if you have a Keurig, use the iced drink setting. If you don’t have the coffee brewed a bit stronger, it will be watered down by the rest of the smoothie and you’ll end up driving through Starbucks anyway. This is enough to make 1 big, fat drink. If you are travelling with another adult, make an extra, I promise they will want to share. And I don’t share drinks.