Monday, July 30, 2007

Martha Stewart's Soft Chocolate Chip Cookies

Leave it to Martha to perfect the chocolate chip cookie!Ingredients:
1 1/4 c. all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp. coarse salt
1/4 tsp. baking soda
7 Tbsp. unsalted butter, room temp
1/4 c. granulated sugar
1/4 c. brown sugar
1 large egg, room temp
1 tsp. vanilla
3 Tbsp. sour cream (I used light!)
3/4 c. semisweet chocolate chips
3/4 c. milk chocolate chips

1. Heat oven to 350 degrees.
2. Whisk together flour, salt, and baking soda.
3. Beat butter and sugars with a mixer on medium-high speed until pale and fluffy, 3 to 5 minutes.
4. Beat in egg and vanilla. Reduce speed to low.
5. Add flour mixture in 2 batches, alternating with sour cream, and beat until just combined.
6. Stir in chocolate chips by hand.
7. Cover and freeze for 10 minutes.
8. Using an ice cream scoop or large tablespoon, drop dough onto baking sheets lined with parchment paper (don't skip this!), spacing 2 in. apart. Flatten slightly. Bake until centers are set and cookies are pale golden brown, 12 to 14 minutes.

This only make 2 dozen cookies, but I'm sure you could double the batch if necessary. Yum!

*Note: This has been corrected so the sugar amounts are right!

Thai Chicken Saute

Here's a great recipe that's light and only takes 20 minutes to prepare! It's from the Cooking Light magazine, and we've made it about 3 times already.


1 (3 1/2-ounce) bag boil-in-bag rice
1 1/2
pounds chicken breast tenders
tablespoon cornstarch
tablespoon fish sauce
teaspoons canola oil, divided
cup sliced onion (we like to use green onions)
2 teaspoons bottled minced garlic
teaspoon bottled ground fresh ginger
cup light coconut milk
2 tablespoons Sriracha (hot chile sauce, such as Huy Fong)
THIS IS HOT!! We only use 1-1.5 tbsp!
tablespoon sugar
tablespoon fresh lime juice
tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
lime wedges

Cook rice according to package directions, omitting salt and fat. Keep warm.

Toss chicken with cornstarch and fish sauce. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add chicken to pan; sauté 5 minutes. Remove chicken from pan. Heat remaining 1 teaspoon oil in pan. Add onion, garlic, and ginger to pan; sauté 1 minute. Return chicken to pan; cook 1 minute or until done. Stir in coconut milk, Sriracha, sugar, and juice; cook 45 seconds or until thoroughly heated. Sprinkle each serving with 1 1/2 teaspoons cilantro. Serve chicken mixture over rice with lime wedges.

4 servings (serving size: 1 1/2 cups chicken mixture, 1/2 cup rice, and 1 lime wedge)

CALORIES 403(24% from fat); FAT 10.8g (sat 3.1g,mono 4.3g,poly 2.4g); PROTEIN 42.6g; CHOLESTEROL 108mg; CALCIUM 32mg; SODIUM 650mg; FIBER 0.5g; IRON 2.4mg; CARBOHYDRATE 31.4g

David Bonom , Cooking Light, MARCH 2007

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

FINISHED, well two days ago...

So I finished the last Harry Potter book Monday night and was EXTREMELY impressed with the ending! That's all I will say simply because I do not want to risk ruining it for anyone else! I have been compulsively discussing it with my labmate, S of the Redevetter duo, and we both agree that it's kind of crazy to think that it's all over! Now I'm even more excited for the final 2 movies to come out - even though I know it will be awhile yet! With all of the Harry Potter excitement going on, my hubby decided that he is going to start reading the 6th book - he tried reading the first book a couple of years ago, but couldn't get into it. Now, however, he's seen all of the movies and he's anxious to know what happens next! He got the main storyline for 6 out of me after we saw the 5th movie, however, I've kept the ending of the final book to myself so as not to ruin the suspense! Yeah for good reading!

Monday, July 23, 2007

Leinie's Brewery Tour

So I took a break from reading the new Harry Potter book to go to Chippewa Falls, WI to tour the Leinenkugel's Brewery with a couple of our friends. If you like brewery tours, this is probably one of the better ones I've been on - the brewery is over 140 years old with the original brewery still standing! They've since added on a new brewery, but the original remains, along with the barn that was used to store the horses that drew the carriages that carried the beer out to the thirsty lumberjacks of the area. They also have the Leinie Lodge, a huge log cabin-like building that houses a sampling bar and TONS of merchandise - including foam oranges and lemons that say either Leinie's Sunset Wheat or Leinie's Summer Shandy - odd, but original. All in all, I was pretty impressed with the setup, although we only got two free beer samples - and they were pretty small. I guess I've been spoiled by other tours in which there was more (or even unlimited) sampling!

Friday, July 20, 2007

So excited for Harry Potter!!

I can't believe the FINAL Harry Potter book is coming out tomorrow! I'm planning on heading to Target to pick up a copy in the morning (no, I'm not crazy enough to wait out the lines at midnight!). Then I'm kicking my husband out of the house for a bike ride so that I can spend a couple of hours reading!! I just hope it ends well....I'm interested to see how J.K. Rowling finally put an ending on such an AWESOME series!

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Good food from the Tiki Party

Just wanted to share a GREAT recipe from the tiki party - my friend, Stacy's, spinach dip! So simple, but completely scrumptious!!

2 pkg. Lipton soup mix
2 c. sour cream
2 c. Hellman's mayonnaise
1- 10 oz. pkg. frozen spinach

Combine first three ingredients; add spinach immediately before serving.

Also - Uncle KT's now-infamous pasta salad made a showing (check it out in her blogs of April 2007), along with some pretty spectacular bean dip!!

Thanks for all of the good food - and for sharing your recipes!

Friday, July 13, 2007

Tiki Party Pics

As promised, here's some good indicators of how the party went!

Thursday, July 12, 2007

RIP: Chevy's Downtown Mpls

My college roomie was in town a couple of weeks ago and we headed downtown Mpls for a quick bite at our one of our favorite restaurants - Chevy's - before she had to head to South Dakota. We got there only to find out that CHEVY'S HAS CLOSED! This is a complete travesty!! Quite possibly one of the BEST restaurants in the cities - good food, yummy free chips and fresh roasted salsa, and AWESOME margaritas - I can't believe they didn't survive the black hole that is downtown! And if they can't survive, who can?? I've included some pictures of lab birthdays at Chevy's - we still have the sombrero hanging in our lab!

Facebook mania!

So I just broke down and joined Facebook. My good friend, Soni, just joined and I said to myself, "If Soni can be on this thing, I guess I can handle it!" However, a few things I've noticed about Facebook, all of which are keeping me pretty skeptical about the whole thing -

1. People I wasn't even really friends with in high school want to be "friends" on Facebook. Why? Are we going to spontaneously become friends now? It seems to be more about collecting people than actually communicating with them.

2. Also, is there an unwritten rule about having to 'confirm' everyone that wants to be your friend? What if I don't want to be "friends" with someone - and thus let them see my photos and stuff?

3. And, on the whole unwritten rule thing - evidently you're not supposed to post anything on your own wall - others can post comments to you, but to respond to them you have to post on THEIR walls (even though facebook does allow you to post on your own wall...).

4. Finally, the whole picture for your profile is odd. I mean, it makes sense so that people can see who you are, however, should it be of just you or you and others? I made do with a pic of me from my friend's bachelorette party - in which I cropped the other two girls out. I'll post it here, let me know what you think. Maybe I'll try to find one of my hubby and I...

Tiki Party '07

Yeah! We survived the Tiki Party! It was a big success - we finished off the Premium keg by 11 pm(!) and ALL SEVEN LITERS of margaritas!!! Considering all of the drinking, it was amazing that nothing was broken and no one was sick! :) Evidently our friends can all hold their liquor. We partied hard - including multiple games of tippy-cup (ah, the good ol' college days) and a well-won bet by the ladies that resulted in a few male party members to strip down to their skivvies (also reminiscent of a few college parties involving the track team...). All in all it was a good night. Those of us that were around the next morning had coffee, egg bake, and Bloodys and commented on how we only made it to 2am - unlike last year in which we went until 4! - we must be getting old. I'll post pictures when I get them!

Friday, July 06, 2007


Tiki time is upon us! The big party is tomorrow night and I'm semi-anxiously trying to get everything ready. I took the day off today (4th of July on a Wednesday really throws a wrench in experiments!), so I'm working on getting food ready and cleaning the house. Although there is a tiki theme to the party, we're not going all out - but I did find this awesome tiki hut beverage dispenser for margaritas! I infused almost 2 liters of tequila with blackberries and raspberries for the margaritas, and I figured out that I technically have enough tequila to make almost 7 LITERS of margaritas! Between that and the keg of Grainbelt, we should be set! :)

Thursday, July 05, 2007

Leinie's Sunset-Glazed Grilled Chicken

Here's a recipe we tried out for supper on the 4th - perfect!

10-12 pieces of chicken (cut for grilling)
2 bottles of Leinenkugel's Sunset Wheat beer (measure out 1/3 cup and set aside for sauce)
3 Tbsp. canola oil
1 cup finely chopped onion
2 Tbsp. minced garlic
10 oz. can mandarin oranges (save 1/3 cup liquid and finely chop oranges)
4 Tbsp. pure maple syrup
2 Tbsp. soy sauce
1/4 tsp. ginger
1/2 tsp. pepper

1. Salt and pepper chicken and place in gallon-sized plastic storage bag.

2. Pour all Leinie's Sunset Wheat beer, minus 1/3 cup, into bag with chicken and refrigerate overnight.

3. To make grilling sauce, saute garlic and onions in canola oil over medium-low heat until onions become lightly-browned and translucent. Add 1/3 cup liquid from canned oranges, plus chopped oranges to onion mixture; continue to saute until juice is reduced. Turn heat to low and add maple syrup, soy sauce, remaining Leinie's Sunset Wheat beer, ginger, and pepper. Simmer for 10 minutes.

4. Place chicken on grill and baste with grilling sauce until done.

5. Enjoy the other 4 beers you had to buy when you purchased the six pack for this recipe! (Okay, I added that direction, but it is essential to the process!)

More recipes available at Leinie's website.