Brunch {Because Mimosas}

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(You can get this amazing sweatshirt over here on Etsy)

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Okay okay, I don’t ONLY love brunch for the mimosas. I love brunch because WHO DOESN’T?? I also love hosting things, as you may know, so I recently said to myself, “Meghan, you should host a brunch.” So I invited a few lady friends over, made breakfast casserole, and set a pretty table.

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But THEN I got so wrapped up in chatting with the ladies I didn’t really take any food or chit chat photos – Sorry!! Alas, I hope this provides you with a little bit of brunch-set-up inspiration. I set the bar up as well, and I promise, OJ and champagne did make an appearance…bar1

Caprese Salad

Any big plans this weekend? End of summer cookouts, perhaps? Or good ol’ fashioned potlucks?

Let me give you the easiest, peasiest dish ever for you to bring to your next gathering: Caprese Salad. It is EXACTLY as it sounds, and everyone will truly love it.

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You need just a few simple ingredients:

  • Mozzarella
  • Cherry or grape tomatoes
  • Basil
  • Olive Oil
  • Balsamic vinegar

Now don’t hate me…but I’m not giving your “real amounts” here. Sorry if that is a problem…but basically, you need equal parts of cheese and tomatoes. Dice your cheese and half your tomatoes – you should have a pretty even ration of the two. Next, roll several basil leaves together and chiffonade your basil to get these nice pretty little strips. Mix this all together with about 1-2 tablespoons of olive oil, and a generous drizzle of balsamic. Mix it all up with a little salt and pepper and let it sit in the fridge a little while. Give it a taste, and if you don’t get enough tang from the balsamic, mix in a little more.

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So this is my quasi-recipe of the day…I made it in a bit of a hurry so didn’t measure anything out – sorry!! But truly, enjoy these last weekends of summer, and make some yummy, fresh foods!

Super Hero Cake Balls

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They always look completely homemade, by hand, but I just love making them. And recently, my friend Annie asked if I could make some cake balls for her son Carter’s Superhero themed 4th birthday party. My response? Of course! Always!

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I had such a fun time making these. Cake and icing from scratch is the key – when you use store-bought, ESPECIALLY canned icing, they are just WAY too sweet. I mean, don’t get me wrong: these little buggers are as sweet and rich as you can get. But when you use canned icing, it’s just over-the-top-not-even-tasty sweet. And really, whipping up some icing is not the most time consuming part of this process, by any means.

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I lucked out finding a few little extra touches, like these cute star candles and those sugar letters to spell out his name. The colors were red, blue, yellow, and green, but I pretty much only added green via the cupcake wrappers, letters, and one of the candles. It was more of an accent anyway!

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Fun, right?? Annie also had someone make a layered super hero cake and both were a great success. My cake balls may look handmade, but they taste AMAZEballs (see what I did there).

Happy Thursday!

Oreo Chocolate Chip Funfetti Cookies

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I mean…you can already tell that they’re amazing, right? These cookies were the perfect homecoming treat for my hubster when he finally made his way back to Columbus.

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These are totally, melt in your mouth, over the top sweet, best of all worlds, type cookies. MAKE THEM FOR THE PEOPLE YOU LOVE!!

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When your process looks like this, you know it’s going to be perfection:

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A word to the wise: don’t eat them all by yourself. Don’t even eat four of them. You will feel gross. Not that I know.

Buffalo Chicken Alfredo with Sweet Potato Noodles {Paleo}

Made it. Ate it. Loved it.

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Buffalo Chicken Alfredo with Sweet Potato Noodles by Brittany Angell. Check it out.

Seriously, this meal is hearty, flavorful, and leaves you feeling OH SO HAPPY. I highly recommend a few extra dashes of buffalo sauce. And with your sweet potato noodles – I just boiled them instead of cooking in more oil. This brings the fat level down a tad. Make this even if you don’t really “eat paleo!!”

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Zoodles + Turkey Tomato Sauce {Paleo}

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Sorry for the iphone photos. I was feeling lazy.

I say “sauce” but really, it’s meat and tomatoes…just the way I like it :) Something about a super chunky tomatoey topping to my pasta has always made me feel at home. And these days, as I am trying to cut back on my pastas and other “evil sugars” (with only marginal success, mind you) I am all about experimenting with noodle alternatives. There is the soba noodle and the spaghetti squash noodle and the sweet potato noodle (spoodle?), and now I’ve discovered the zucchini noodle = zoodle.

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So first, the zoodle. SUPER EASY. They have fun and fancy tools out there, like this spiral slicer, which would probalby make it even easier than it already is. However, I just used a simple Julienne Peeler to create my zoodles. You can boil, steam, or stir fry these, just like any other veggie. I boiled them just to get them as tender and pasta-like as possible. You could literally do anything with these guys. Okay fine, maybe not literally, but ALMOST.

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And then, my “sauce.” This makes 4 generous servings. I learned that when you turn a zucchini into zoodles, one zucchini ends up being about a serving. So if you are really wanting 4 servings, get 4 zucchinis and thank me later.

Turkey Tomato Sauce {Paleo}

Ingredients:

1 medium onion
2 16 oz cans of diced tomatoes (Go flavorful here. I used one with garlic and basil, and one “hot” with green chilis)
1 lb lean ground turkey
salt and pepper to taste
ZOODLES!

Directions:

1. Chop your onion and saute over medium heat in a little olive oil or cooking spray until it starts to brown. Add your turkey and cook until browned (season with some salt and pepper along the way). Finally, drain your tomatoes and add to your onions and turkey. Let this all simmer a while to get the flavors melded.

2. Meanwhile, boil your zoodles (or spaghetti or whatever) and then cover them in the meaty tomatoey goodness. YUMS!

How easy is that?? A hearty yet summery meal. And honestly, the best part about spaghetti and meatballs is the meatballs, obviously, so this kind of fills that craving for you. Let me know if you try out zoodles and what you think!

Cucumber Avocado Salad Dressing {Paleo}

So THIS dressing is definitely a winner. Far more delicious and creamy than the others I have tried. Whip this sucker up, add some salt and pepper to your liking, and keep it in the fridge! Yummmmms.

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Cucumber Avocado Salad Dressing

Blend all of the following ingredients until smooth and creamy. Add salt and pepper to taste and chill it in the fridge. Enjoy!

  • 1 avocado, peeled and pitted
  • 1/2 english cucumber
  • 1 cup spinach
  • juice of 1 small or 1/2 large lemon
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 green onions, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3/4 cup water
  • salt and pepper