Why Go Out for Frozen Yogurt

We raved about places like Big Spoon Yogurt in the past, but sometimes creating frozen yogurt concoctions in the confines of your own home can be great too. This can happen easily if you plan ahead during your next grocery trip, or make a quick trip to the store on the way home from school or work.
For the frozen yogurt pictured, all I did was pick up a pint container of frozen yogurt and some fresh raspberries. I topped the yogurt with the raspberries and some mixed berry jelly that I already had in my fridge.
The possibilities really are endless when it comes to what you can top your yogurt with, whether it is candy or fruit.
Continue Reading>>


Favorite Two Websites for Recipes

Each week, when I'm preparing my grocery list for the week, I like to look around for recipes to make it through the next few weeks. There are two web sites that I frequent the most for delicious recipes so I don't have to resort to the same old thing each night.


I know this one sounds like a cheap out, because all you have to do is open a can of cream of something and add some type of meat and vegetable. But this is actually the beauty of it. Take their Tuna Noodle Casserole. All you have to do is boil some egg noodles, and then combine them in a casserole dish with two cans of tuna, a can of cream of celery soup, some frozen peas and throw the mixture into the oven for twenty minutes. On those nights when I'm so tired from school and work, this web site is my saving grace for yummy food that contains very little ingredients.


I somehow stumbled upon this site in my novice days of cooking, and it is a site that I frequent now even after four years of picking up a spatula. It works two ways. You can either browse their thousands of recipes submitted by users, by clicking on whatever type of recipe you are looking for (such as chicken recipe or main dish). Or you can search for a recipe based on one or two ingredients you have on hand. I use this web site to find dinner inspirations at least once a week, which is why it is one of my favorites (like the Baked Ziti posted last week).
Continue Reading>>


First date dining rules

So, you’re on a first date and everything is going great. He brings you flowers, she laughs at all of your jokes and you have so much in common that time is flying by and before you know it, 10 p.m. turns into 2 a.m.

The last thing you want to worry about is whether or not you have something stuck in your teeth or if your breath smells bad, right?

We can fix this little problem.

The first date is all about making a great first impression and hopefully getting that wonderful goodnight kiss or something more if you're lucky.

There are certain rules to follow when your first date involves food.

Rule number one, do not order pesto pasta or spaghetti. The little green pieces of pesto will get stuck in your teeth and you‘ll be chatting away about your annoying roommate with green all in your teeth. It‘s not a good look. Spaghetti was cute for the dogs in Disney’s Lady and the Tramp, but it is too messy for a date. If you have to keep putting the napkin up to your face and you are even a little bit worried about the spaghetti sauce splattering everywhere then don’t order it.

Rule number two, do not order something with a lot of garlic, or a medium amount for that matter. If you’re not sure just ask the waiter. Your date will greatly appreciate this and hopefully get the hint too.

Rule number three, do not order anything that might upset your stomach even a little bit. If your date wants to go to a new Indian place and you want to get lucky at the end of the night, I’d suggest Chili’s.

Some of these rules may seem like no-brainers but sometimes we are so comfortable with ourselves and used to what we like, we forget to think of how it will affect other people. You need to be able to eat and carry on a conversation because that is the whole purpose of a date, whether it‘s the first one with a really hot girl or a family member.

Here are some more helpful hints to help you lock in the make out session at the end of the night.

Try to eat more protein and less bread.

We all get nervous sometimes and eat way too many chips with salsa or bread sticks because we don’t know what else to do but bread along with the rest of your entrĂ©e will feel too heavy and protein will give you energy for whatever it is you will be doing after dinner. Wink, wink!

Like I said, we all get nervous on first dates and along with eating or fidgeting with everything around us, we tend to drink a lot more alcohol than we normally would. This can be a very bad decision if you cannot hold your liquor. You could end up talking about things that you will regret the next day and possibly not even remember. Depending on your size and weight, you should probably only have two drinks maximum.

If you think the end of the night could be a little more than just kissing, there are some foods that can work in your favor. According to Foxnews.com, protein is a good energy source and it also provides an increase in stamina. You can find protein in foods besides meat like beef or chicken, there is also a lot of protein in pine nuts.

Asparagus contains foliate which is necessary for histamine production and histamine is necessary for both males and females to reach orgasm. Oysters are a well-known aphrodisiac and contain zinc which increases libido.

Last, but certainly not least is dessert!

Chocolate is known to release serotonin, which can provide a calming effect in your brain and helps get you in the mood.

Good luck! And remember, just be yourself (unless you love garlic like I do and tone it down a notch).
Continue Reading>>

Different Types of Vegetarians

Girls Next Door blonde bombshell, Holly Madison, poses nude while saying, “I’d rather go naked than wear fur.”

Do I have your attention now?

Madison, along with many other celebrities like Paul McCartney, Alicia Silverstone and the rock n’ roll goddess herself, Joan Jett, have all been apart of spreading information about vegetarianism.

In a time when the percentage of obese Americans couldn’t be any higher, it is no wonder why so many people are choosing to eat more natural and organic foods.
People are not just eating natural and organic but they are also becoming vegetarians.

Vegetarian seems to be a very confusing word and topic for some people.
When I tell people I’m a vegetarian I often get the response “ So does that mean you don’t eat cheese or eggs either?” or “Why? Is it because of animal cruelty or you just don’t like the way it tastes?”

There are so many questions because so many people know nothing about being a vegetarian or the different types there are and why.

According to Dictionary.com the definition of vegetarian is “A person who does not eat or does not believe in eating meat, fish, fowl, or, in some cases, any food derived from animals, as eggs or cheese, but subsists on vegetables, fruits, nuts, grain, etc.”
But it doesn’t stop there because there are many different kinds of vegetarians out there.

Lets jump right in there and start off with Lacto vegetarian.

A Lacto vegetarian eats dairy products but they do not eat eggs or anything made with eggs like pancakes, bread, cookies or cake.
Lacto-ovo vegetarians eat dairy products and eggs just not meat of any kind.
A Pesca vegetarian eats dairy, eggs and seafood only.

The last one and the one that confuses almost everyone is the dreaded Vegan.
Yes they have tattoos that say vegan and they do not wear or buy anything that is animal related like leather shoes or fur coats, but they are regular people too, I promise.
The vegan is the most extreme vegetarian there is.
They do not consume anything that was made with eggs, milk or anything else that has a face.

So you might be thinking, “What do they eat then?”
In a country that prides itself on diversity with numerous fast food and chain restaurants to choose from, we have yet to make it easier for Vegans or even regular Vegetarians.
There are stores and some restaurants in big cities that support vegetarianism but let me tell you, it’s not easy for them.

Think about how hard it would be if you were lactose intolerant and everywhere you go you have to explain your dietary restrictions like when you go to a dinner party or casual BBQ.
It is even harder for vegetarians and especially hard for vegans.
Luckily there are many different foods that can substitute the protein and other nutrients in meat.
Tofu, beans, nuts, peanut butter and seeds are a great source of protein for vegans.

For Pesca vegetarians they can add tuna or other fish to their diet for protein and Lacto-ovo vegetarians can add eggs and cheese to the list for meatless protein.
Although it is surprising how many food products there are, essentially for non meat eaters, that are made with tofu but look like a chicken nugget.

What’s up with that?!
Who knows, maybe it makes them feel cool because they can still eat a “chicken” nugget too.

Vegetarianism is sweeping the nation and you might even have a friend that is a vegetarian and not even know it.

The point is, next time someone tells you they’re a vegan or vegetarian you will be able to sympathize with them and have a better understanding of where they’re coming from.

This is only scratching the surface, so for more information go to Peta.com or chooseveg.com and I bet you’ll be surprised at the amount of information they have and how many celebrities are supporters of the vegetarian movement.

Peta.com also has tons of yummy vegetarian recipes available for you to try and experiment with like their recipe of the week Caramel-Apple French Toast, so get cooking!
Continue Reading>>


Baked Ziti

Here is a delicious recipe for baked ziti that I found on cookingspot.com. I was looking around for a new recipe to try the other night, and came across this super easy recipe. It is full of tomato-y and cheesy goodness. It is one of many recipes from Cooking Spot that has not let me down.

I edited the recipe slightly to suit my tastes. Instead of the oregano and basil, I used 2 tsp. of Italian seasonings, which you can find in the spice aisle. I also used 4 cloves of garlic.

2 tablespoon(s) , olive oil
1 whole , medium onion finely chopped
2 whole , garlic cloves minced
1/2 teaspoon(s) , dried oregano
1 teaspoon(s) , dried basil
1/8 teaspoon(s) , pepper
16 ounces , ziti cooked and drained
1 cup(s) , shredded mozzarella cheese
28 ounces , tomatoes crushed

The directions say to:

Saute the onion and garlic in the olive oil for 5 minutes. Add the crushed tomatoes and spices, and bring to a boil. After this, simmer for about 20 minutes. Put the pasta into a casserole dish, stir in the tomato mixture, and then sprinkle with cheese. Bake for 30 minutes, and then enjoy. Continue Reading>>


The Joy of All-Natural Peanut Butter

Peanut butter and jelly sandwiches bring back memories of elementary school lunches, where mom would pack this ubiquitous sandwich, crusts cut off, in your lunch box. As a college student, though, peanut butter can still come in handy as a way to fill yourself up and keep energized throughout the day, because it contains healthy fats and is high in protein. It is time for a change though, and this comes in the form of natural peanut butter.

Compared to most brand name peanut butter, natural peanut butter is a good choice because most brands of natural peanut butter, like Adam's, contain only one ingredient: peanuts. Other brands contain sugar and partially hydrogenated oils (to keep the peanut butter smooth and soft), extra ingredients that are unnecessary because natural peanut butter is actually quite tasty and doesn't need to be doctored up with these unhealthy ingredients.

Here are two tips for anyone looking to try natural peanut butter:

1. Stir the crap out of your peanut butter once you open it. You'll notice a layer of oil at the top, which when stirred in, gives the peanut butter that nice creamy texture.

2. Refrigerate the peanut butter right away, unless you want to repeat step one every time you want to have PB&J or ants on a log (celery spread with peanut butter and topped with raisins). The natural oil from the peanuts will separate from the peanut butter when warm, so the refrigeration will stop this.
Continue Reading>>