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Sunday, January 27, 2013

Never Enough Chai!!

I MADE CHAI BUTTER COOKIES. Because I am a slight chai addict, at least I admit it. I just love the flavor of chai. It is spicy and tea-licoius. If you have never had chai, do it. Drink the kool-aid. You won't regret it. I promise!

I decided to make chai butter cookies because I have some chai mix that Goombah's mom made me and I found this recipe on Pinterest (Yes, I am addicted to Pinterest too. follow my boards if you so desire). And my friend Nicole wanted to bake and I thought, "what a perfect idea! I have this great recipe!"

At first, the dough was WAY to dry. When we dried to push down the balls of dough with a fork they broke into dough crumbles. Not exactly appetizing. I thought my cookies were a lost cause. Another baking disaster. ALAS, I added two more tablespoons of butter and voila! Crisis averted.

They were very delicious! They were like shortbread cookies but better because there was chai, duh! They'd be great to eat with coffee, or...dare I say...some hot chai?

Tuesday, January 22, 2013


Spring semester has began and so has a true Minnesotan winter. Today I put leggings under my jeans and a long sleeve under my sweater. I snuggled my feet into two pairs of thick socks and shoved them into boots. I put on my warmest hat and wrapped a scarf tightly around my neck, lifting it to cover my nose (sure prevent that Rudolf red nose experience). I put on my new, long, puffy and blue jacket (Thanks to The Dad) and lifted the hood over my head. My teeny little hands slid into monstrous gloves. And then, I walked to class. It was a great feat. But, today, I beat the cold.

But seriously, it is really freaking cold out. I walked to class in -10 degree weather. WHY DID I EVER CHOSE TO GO TO SCHOOL IN MINNESOTA? (just kidding, I really do love it here). It is just so cold! Thankfully, its forecast-ed to get warmer at the end of the week. It could even snow. I am not the biggest fan of snow, but I'll take it over these freezing temperatures any day. 

ALSO. I have started a new workout routine. I (hopefully) am having a less intensely busy semester, so I decided to put a work out schedule into affect. I figured if I made it a part of my schedule it would keep me from getting bored and wasting my time on..lets say...Pinterest. If all stays simple (HAHA), I plan on sticking to it (at least roughly. I am OK with skipping some workouts, I just want to not skip a week of workouts. That's the idea anyway). Already feeling a bit sore today. Woo! Getting fit!

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Homemade Pretzels!

more like blobs of pretzel, but close enough for me!
Today I took on a great challenge. I decided I wanted to make homemade pretzels. It was ALMOST a success! Almost.... I used this recipe (but only did a half version). I have never made anything with yeast before, so I wasn't sure what to do. I didn't have a fancy mixing machine or a dough hook. I just used an old-fashioned wooden spoon and spatula to mix the dough. Not really sure if that made a difference. I also didn't have plastic rap, so the dough never really doubled in size like its suppose to. ALSO, I added a little bit of flare to some of the pretzels by sprinkling chai mix or hot chocolate mix on the top. They were all really good! If I were to make pretzels again, I would make the chai mix and hot chocolate mix ones and make an icing dip on the side. I am salivating now just thinking about how delicious that would be! Yum! I also think I didn't leave the pretzels in the oven long enough because they weren't crispy enough for me, but that is an easily solvable problem. Congrats to me for trying something new. What will be next? I have no idea!

Monday, January 14, 2013

Mac N' Cheese & Tomato Soup Bake

Finally! I pinterest idea that didn't fail! 

Mac n' Cheese & Tomato Soup Bake

(I used leftovers that I had)
Mac n' Cheese 
Tomato Soup
 (Prepared with 1/2 can milk and 1/2 can water)
1 cup Cheez-its
A sprinkle of shredded cheddar cheese


Its SO SIMPLE! Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
1. Put Mac n' Cheese in a pan. Spread evenly (I don't have a pan, so I used a small pot, it worked relatively well, but a pan would've been better.)
2. Pour tomato soup over the top of the mac n' cheese. 
3. Crumble Cheez-its over the top of it all.
4. Sprinkle the cheese over the top of that
5. Put in oven for 15-20 minutes (if you use a regular pan it might end up being a bit less. Just make sure you keep it in long enough that the cheese melts but the Cheez-its don't burn.)
6. Scoop it into a bowl. (Depending on your Mac to Soup ratio it could be more soupy or more mac-n-cheesy. Mine was more soupy, because I just used the leftovers I had. I think if you used a full box of mac and a full can of soup you would probably have a mac-n-cheesier meal. But I am a college kid and I didn't want my leftovers to go to waste!) 

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Too Early for Banana Pancakes

Today I learned a few very important lessons:

1) I need to stop looking at Pinterest late at night. I get these great "ideas" for new recipes and they never are as good as I imagine when I am half asleep.

 Last night, while mourning the Packer loss ( :( Still so fresh. Next year Pack! Next year!) and wasting away time on pinterest, I ran into a recipe for "easy" banana pancakes. All I needed was one overripe banana (which I had in my freezer) and two eggs. PERFECT, I had the ingredients and I thought to myself, "Yum, I will make these for breakfast tomorrow." I didn't take into account that my not-yet-coffee-fueled brain would not be able to handle actually cooking a breakfast meal.

2) I should not try to cook anything before I drink my morning coffee.

I burnt the first two "pancakes." Not just crispy black edges, the entire bottom of the pancakes were BLACK. 

3) I should stop trying to make things with bananas. I don't like them, but I keep trying to find ways to incorporate the potassium rich, healthy fruit into my diet. Remember Banana Chips? Yep. I need to stop.

The "banana pancakes" tasted like banana flavored eggs. I don't know what you think about that, but let me tell you, I was not pleased. I could not even take a second bite. Blehk. I still cannot get the taste out of my mind. I guess if you really enjoy eggs and really enjoy bananas, you might think that sounds like a perfect match. I am not fond of either, so I really have no idea what I was thinking. It was awful. 

 Hopefully I will remember these lessons and you will not have to read about my banana fails anymore. No promises.

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Truly A Cheese-head Chili

It has been WAY TOO LONG since I have blogged, for that, I apologize! My fall semester was INSANELY crazy, and I was just as busy as I thought I would be, leaving me little time to do anything advegturous, and how many blogs could I have written about the dining hall food? I am starting off 2013 with the promise to myself and my readers that I will blog this semester and go on adventures in Minneapolis and my kitchen.

Yes. That is a Packer Pillow Pet
 AND NOW, the newest advegture occurred because my ALL TIME FAVORITE TEAM, the Green Bay Packers are playing the San Francisco 49ers in their second playoff game of the season tonight! Of course, a cheese-head at heart, I decided to prepare Amy's vegan black bean chili and Annie's organic shells and real aged cheddar. Because you cannot be from Wisconsin and not enjoy chili and mac n' cheese on game day. I wasn't sure what to expect since I have never experienced chili from a can. FACT: I actually used my can opened for the first time and I even opened the can on my first try. Go me!

While awaiting the game to start, which was like waiting for water to boil, I literally waited for water to boil so that I could make the delicious mac n' cheese. I like Annie's because it doesn't have that artificial flavor or color that other boxed mac n' cheese often has. Plus, the real aged cheddar was the perfect cheese-head chili partner. If you are from Wisconsin, you probably love cheese. Its practically in your blood, probably why they call us cheese-heads, which I am perfectly proud of!

The chili was GREAT! I wasn't sure what to expect, but it was full of flavor, but not overly spicy and the beans were a great meat substitute. I did not feel like I was missing out on meat at all. YUM! I will be making this again for the next game, maybe even....THE SUPERBOWL!? (Fact: I couldn't be more excited for the Superbowl. I am a HUGE Beyonce fan! If the Packers make it, I would be SO FREAKING HAPPY.)

Now that my belly is full, I will watch the game! FINALLY!  GO PACK GO!!