Two delicious recipes for you!

If I gave you a photo of Dakota sleeping in my file drawer, can we call a truce?

Lately I've been you guessed it. Busy.

But I have two resolutions to accomplish this year (and hopefully continue indefinitely). One of them is to floss more, and the other is to write more.

I started my resolutions back in December when I came up with them (I don't believe in waiting until a certain date to start something when it's better to start earlier), and I've done pretty well so far. I floss daily now rather than every couple of days like before (quit yo judging), and I've gotten into a groove with writing in some capacity almost every day. The ultimate goal is to do both daily.

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One of the most common resolutions I hear every year is some form of "get healthy" be it go to the gym, eat less sweets, or eat more vegetables.

If you're trying to eat more vegetables, the easiest way to introduce them into your diet is to get creative. And to try all different kinds.

Ever tried okra?

I'm from the South (well central Florida, which is technically in the South), so okra is pretty easy to come by. The main gripe I hear from people is that okra is gross because it's slimy, but that's a problem with an easy remedy.

Chop 'em and bake 'em. The sliminess is all but gone.

Even after drying the okra out in the oven, they're still not that sexy of a vegetable. So you have to dress them up a little.

I think they'd look great with red. Specifically sun-dried tomatoes.

Maybe a little yellow, too, in the form of a sweet yellow onion.

Yes, I know this photo is terrible. It's hard to focus on my phone when my fingers are covered in olive oil.

Then throw in your green buddies and saute them until they're soft about 5 minutes. Serve them with your favorite Southern dishes like grits (recipe below) and some barbecued meat/meat substitute of your choosing.

Sexy Sun-Dried Tomato & Okra

serves 3, or 2 people who really, really like okra

  • 3 c okra, chopped (ends removed)
  • 1/4 c sundried tomatoes, julienned
  • 1/2 sweet onion, diced
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • salt + pepper to taste
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place chopped okra on pan, seed sides up. Bake for 10 minutes.
  2. In medium skillet, heat olive oil and saute the onions for a couple of minutes, then add in the sun-dried tomatoes and continue to saute until the onions are clear.
  3. Toss the okra into the skillet and saute for another 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.

Goat Cheese + Leek Grits

(adapted from the recipe on the back of Bob's Red Mill Polenta)

serves 4-5 (LEFTOVERS FOR DAYS!)

  • 1 c Bob's Red Mill Polenta
  • 1 c low-sodium chicken broth (veggie works, too)
  • 1/3 c goat cheese
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 T butter
  • 2/3 c leeks, rinsed and chopped (not sure how? click here)
  1. In medium saucepan over medium heat, melt butter and saute leeks until softened. Add chicken broth, 2 c water, and salt and bring to boil. Gradually stir in polenta and reduce heat to simmer.
  2. Continue cooking on low for 5 minutes, then remove from heat. Stir in goat cheese, cover, and let sit for 2 minutes before serving.

Now, back to what I've been up to lately.

In October, I dressed up as Daria and paraded around West Hollywood.

In November, I visited my family in Tampa. My brother had to work on Thanksgiving, so Mia and I paid him a visit at his fire station. My mullet skirt came, too.

And in December, Mike and I began the process of moving in together. He moved a few things in, we painted, and he began building our dining room table (more to come on that later).

Most of the furniture will be coming from my apartment, which I'm leaving at the end of this month. In the meantime, Dakota rests upon what serves as the interim sofa in front of the interim entertainment center.

I'll post more photos as more of the apartment comes along. This weekend we'll be painting the currently-empty master bedroom and finishing up the dining room set.

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Posted in Renovations Post Date 06/24/2016