Chorizo Queso

August 29, 2014 by Ali

Just when you thought chips and queso couldn’t get any better…

chorizo joined the party.

Oh, and not just any party. The homemade, creamy, flavorful, perfect-for-dipping and nacho-ing queso party. The all-natural, made-with-actual-factual-cheddar-and-fresh-ingredients party. The ready-to-go-in-20-minutes, easy-to-make, and perfect-for-serving-at-an-actual-party party.

NOT, mind you, the usual processed cheese party. No way, Jose. Our old, mysterious friend Velveeta was not invited to this one. So you can rest easy knowing that natural cheeses and ingredients are getting scooped up on those delicious chips.

So what do you think? Ready to partaaaaay?

Read more

Grilled Chicken with Pineapple Avocado Salsa

August 28, 2014 by Ali

We’re 3 days away from September, and I finally went swimming for the first time of the summer last night.

About. Dang. Time.

I used to spend pretty much every single summer day at the pool when I was a kid! In the mornings, I finally “woke up” each day by diving into that chilly water for swim team. (Where, I must point out, I made my one and only notable athletic achievement in life, winning 2nd place in the city of Wichita for backstroke at age 8.) After that, my sister and I would stick around for synchronized swimming. (I have home videos to prove it, where you can also catch a peek of our hair slicked back with gelatin. Yes, it’s what those Olympic swimmers use to literally glue their hairstyles in place.) Then once I became a teenager and was so over those activities, I would head to the pool with friends to lay out for hours and hours and check out the cute lifeguards and get hopped up on sugar from giant Pixie Sticks and work on the perfect tan. Because, of course, I was part of the lucky Banana Boat generation that’s now paying for it today…

Still.

Those summer days are driftin’ away, so I was happy to splash around with friends at least once last night before life gets freezing. So for a fresh and tasty meal before pool time, I decided to make another quintessential summer classic at my house — Grilled Chicken with Pineapple Avocado Salsa.

Read more

Italian Orzo Spinach Soup

August 27, 2014 by Ali

This past Sunday, I woke up on the wrong side of the bed. The Let’s-Be-Unusually-Hard-On-Yourself-About-Everything-Today side of the bed.

First of all, I woke up to the sound of my oven timer beeping loudly at me at 6:30am because Forgetful Here accidentally left my phone (a.k.a. the only “alarm clock” I own) at book club the night before. Lovely. Then I hopped in my car to head to church for early band practice, and got completely annoyed after something crashed in the trunk that I still hadn’t cleaned out the clutter in my car for a few weeks. Then, despite getting to play with the most encouraging and awesome group of guys in our band, I started getting super down about my singing and felt like my voice wasn’t strong enough or versatile enough or simply good enough. And then during church, my mind began to wander into the spiral of project deadlines looming and laundry piled up and friends who I hadn’t seen in awhile and a mega load of dishes waiting in the sink and books I couldn’t find time to read and on and on, and before I knew it, it was like – POOF!

Read more

Chicken Alfredo Baked Ziti

August 25, 2014 by Ali

This recipe goes out to all of you rad parents with kiddos heading back to school this week. You asked for quick and easy recipes in our recent reader survey here. And let me tell you, this one’s a keeper. If you were a child of the 80′s like me, you can even pop it in your Trapper Keeper to hold onto for busy school nights ahead.

Ohhh yeah.

Read more

Easy Blueberry “Cheesecake” Bites

August 22, 2014 by Ali

I made you a new snackity snack!

And I hereby name them “cheesecake bites”. Aren’t they cute?!?

Read more

Lemon Meringue Pie

August 20, 2014 by Ali

Last week, there was a birthday in da house at #neighbornights — my friend, Liam!

Talk about neighbors turned into good friends. I can’t really imagine life in our loft without this guy. Liam is a born-and-raised New Yorker who followed a job to Kansas City and ended up living across the hall from me. And during the past two years that I’ve lived in this building, he has been my #1 neighbor.

Read more

Greek Fish Tacos

August 19, 2014 by Ali

Happy Taco Tuesday!

This day of the week (alright, and practically every other day) is usually reserved for Mexican food in mi casa. But today I’m taking a cue from my friend, Cynthia, and going Greek with these delicious fish tacos. In addition to being quite colorful, they are quite good.

Read more

Tzatziki

August 18, 2014 by Ali

Random fact about me:

I can accurately pronounce Spanish, Italian, French, German, Latin, and just about any other language if needed.

Read more