Salmon To Go

As we make our way into the Spring season, the weather gets a little more warmer and scenery more alive! Who wants to be inside?

Time to start thinking about picnics and food on the go! Maybe some lighter fare..

I know you what me talk a out about Wild Planet Foods, this is another reason why! Their salmon!! Yes, salmon! Another fish that is as popular and versatile as tuna, but a smidge more!

Around the Spring season you tend to see salmon take a forefront with dishes. I love tuna salad and I like to alternate it with salmon. I’ve started from fresh salmon, ok, ok, leftover salmon.

With Wild Planet Foods Wild sockeye salmon it’s as fresh as if I had just cooked it! And since I want to be able to make it quick, easy and on the go, I need a vessel besides Tupperware. Ah ha! I’ve got a package of puff pastry sheets in the freezer!!

So here’s my ingredients:

I made my simple salmon salad of :

2 cans of wild sockeye salmon

One package of cream cheese

2-3 teaspoons Lemon juice

Fine chopped celery

One tablespoon dried dill weed

2-3 tablespoons mayonnaise

Puff pastry sheets

I have an “empanada” mood which has helped in forming my salmon salad pockets.

You could also use a round cookie cutter and fold them over. How many you yield will depend on the size you make. Don’t forget to dab a little water on the edges to seal your pastry. Once you’ve set them on your baking sheet, brush a little egg wash on them .

Bake at 425° for about 15-20 minutes, golden brown. And voilà….

Easy to take to the botanical gardens, or just out to the park.

Hope you like it!!

Special thanks to Wild Planet Foods for sharing their wild sockeye salmon to create this dish!

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Small Fish, Packed Protein

Need something quick and packed with protein? Reach for a can of one of Wild Planet Foods’ different varieties of sardines!!

WHAT?!? Why the face? Have you tried sardines lately? Listen, they’re not the same as they used to be eons ago. They have more versatility and personality now. Which is why I chose Wild Planet Foods brand, they have a great variety to suit every need.

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Now, if you already love sardines, I know you can probably pop open a can and grab some crackers. Yes, I’ve done that; their sardines with the extra virgin olive oil and lemon is perfect for that.

But what if you have never had sardines before, where do you start? Or maybe you need a quick lunch (or snack). I’ve got something simple but yet satisfying. Remember these little guys pack the protein.

Checking the cupboard I found some Naan bread, and with a can of the sardines in marinara sauce…..

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How simple? All I did, besides open the can 😉 I added a dash of Italian seasoning and a small dash of parmesan and mozzarella cheese on top. Into the toaster oven in went.

The finished product…..

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Its makes for a great option if you celebrate Lent, too. Now I’m not saying this will convert everyone into sardine lovers, but it is a great option.

In the past I’ve also used the variety in extra virgin olive oil tossed with some Angel hair pasta and a smidge of pesto sauce.

Sardines have come such a long way, there’s  always a recipe that showcases its great flavor. Who knows who you may “convert”.

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I would like to give a special thank to Wild Planet Foods for their endless support and generosity!

Want more details on what makes Wild Planet Foods a family favorite? Just go to http://www.wildplanetfoods.com

“March”On Moms

There’s so much to being a “Mom” that isn’t just like it’s written in all those baby books. Why? Because everyone is different!! Surprise, right? Sure, family and friends can give great advice, but sometimes you need an unbiased answer to all those questions.

That’s why this month’s “Dish the CFA Tea with Geri B” was meant for all the new moms and soon-to-be-moms……This month’s meeting we were so fortunate to have a very special guest; Sharon Filegar, RNC-MNN,BSN,IBCLC of St. Mary’s Hospital Mother Infant Unit. IMG_2062

It’s just us, so ask all the questions. With 30 years experience, it’s safe to say that Sharon has probably heard it all. And reassures us that though as new moms we feel like aliens- we aren’t alone. IMG_2068

So much to fit into the one hour, Sharon brought some take aways for all the moms.

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Now, you know that at every “Dish The CFA Tea” we have goodies to share! I always bring my new finds to share and sample, and Chick Fil A Short Pump Crossing Family has the Sweet Tea flowing!!

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When you join us at the event don’t forget to sign in to our guest book to be entered in to the raffle- great prizes await!!!

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And special “Thanks!” to Sprout Organic Baby and Toddler Food for the awesome coupons they gave to share with all the attendees! Thank you too, to MomsMeet for connecting us!

It goes without saying, a big hug and thanks to our host, Chick Fil A Short Pump Crossing for their generosity !!

 

So much fun having such wonderful moms gathered in one place! Can’t wait for the April meeting!!

*Spoiler Alert * Time for some Spring cleaning……..

 

February Art Fun!

I’m really enjoying the monthly meetings I have been Blessed to be a part of at my local Chick Fil A (Short Pump Crossing Richmond VA)!!

For the month of February our theme was Art!! And what better way to get those creative juices flowing with the guidance of Painting with a Twist! Step by step, Shauna (owner) guided us through out masterpiece creation.

No previous art experience needed! Whether you can draw a straight line of recreate a Monet, you can paint with Painting with a Twist!

It was very basic in the beginning. But, within the hour, two brushes and three paint colors later my painting came together and had its own personality.

I won’t be opening a gallery any time soon. But my family loves it and I had a blast making it.

That wasn’t the only thing that morning…… Harlequin Books/Harper Collins Publishers sent a great art mystery read….. all about a family owned Goya painting that’s been stolen. Don’t you just enjoy a great mystery? This book and others from the book club portion can be found at:

http://www.harlequintradepublishing.com

When you think of art you tend to think of France… and look L’Occitane joined us too!

Did you know that you can grab your gals and have a mini “spa party ” at your local L’Occitane? All attendees get a special discount on their purchases and you can choose which “spa like” treatment you would all like to participate in. I’ve done one a few years ago- it was a blast!! They take care of the refreshments too!

Speaking of refreshments…. we all love to snack. I’m an expert at that – hahahaha!! In the theme of “art” the deliciousness company sent their Mozaics chips! All 5 flavors! They are popped veggie and potato chips. Packed with 4grams of fiber, great flavor and their sea salt flavor only contains 7 ingredients. They show that you don’t have to jeopardize great taste and quality to have healthier options.

As with each meeting, all attendees get their free Chick Fil A sweet tea, or a different beverage upon request.

Once again great times spent at Chick Fil A and the community.

Special thanks to:

deliciousness for the fabulous Mozaics chips

L’Occitane Stony Point for the samples

Harlequin books/Harper Collins for the amazing books they send per month for the raffle

Shout out to Painting with a Twist- Richmond VA for being a great part of the event!

Always…. a huge thank you and hugs to Chick Fil A Short Pump Crossing for sponsoring and hosting “Dish the CFA Tea with Geri”, along with being a great supporter of my blog.

More details about the March meeting coming soon!!

They’re Back!

Remember last year when Maggianos had Kids Cooking Classes? Well, they’re back and as fun as ever!

Why do we love them so much? Because kids learn a life skill while having fun! And “Foodies” are starting young these days. Don’t underestimate the kiddos- many of them have great palates just waiting to show their stuff.

The class breaks it down to a full meal from salad start to dessert finish.

With these classes they’ll learn time management. How? They start by making dessert! Since dessert needs to be baked, they teach how you can complete the meal while dessert is baking. What are they baking? A yummy apple crostata!

Hands on makes it fun and helps them get a feeling of independence.

So as their first creation is baking- it’s on to the salad!

Everyone loves the Maggiano’s house salad dressing.

While the kids are working in the chef game the parents get a lovely breakfast treat.

The class isn’t over yet! We still have to make the main course- lasagna!!

Chef Patrick takes them step by step through out each dish. And yes, he goes table to table to answer any questions or add addition guidance.

The entire meal that the mini chefs have created are packaged and bagged to be easily taken home to enjoy.

What? They don’t get to eat it there? Nope!!! Because this is Maggiano’s, and they have lunch for our star chefs in the making (yes, parents do too).

And it is from start to finish- delicious!!

So stay tuned for the next set of classes. Contact your nearest Maggiano’s for when their classes take place. Tickets can be purchased through Eventbrite.

Special thanks to the Maggiano’s Short Pump Richmond staff for these great classes

And a special shout out to JAMM_SHOTZ for the great photos!!

Me and my Kitchen Gadgets

I love to cook, I love to experiment and try different cuisines. But when it comes to baking, I wish I could bake every day- though my husband says if I did he wouldn’t be able to fit out the door- HAHAHAHA!!

I’m not an experienced baker or a step away from having a bakery. I just love to bake- it is my zen!

With that being said, it takes a lot of restraint on my part to buy all those neat baking products and tools. Recently, there was a baking tool set, for some reason, I couldn’t resist!

While browsing Williams Sonoma on a recent trip to the mall…. I found the cutest thumbprint cookie cutters!! I know, it’s not that hard to make thumbprint cookies…. but, again it’s hard for me to resist. And home I went to make some cookie dough.

Why am I fascinated with them? They’re like cute little stampers!!

Too cute!!

And in an instance I have a tray full of “fancy ” cookies.

Now for the filling….. as you’ve noticed, I’ve been fascinated with the new Baileys Original Irish Cream baking chips from Clabber Girl. So, why not!

I made a ganache/ icing type filling for the cookies and piped them on.

It’s fancy, like a decadent treat! I may (or may not) have mentioned before, these wonderful baking chips are NON-alcoholic but still have that great Baileys flavor we all love.

Ready for any gathering or even put them in a pretty container as a gift!

Until we bake again!!

Spruce up Shortbread

I love simple cookies like shortbread, or another cookie I found called Amish cookies- just like a shortbread just thinner.

They’re light, but sometimes they can be a little …. boring. I need something to spruce them up!

From my last article I shared a recipe using these great new baking chips from Clabber Girl, Baileys Original Irish cream baking chips. Well, I figured I’ve got some left, and I have some heavy whipping cream- to the double boiler!!!

These chips melt so beautifully, love the shine it gets.

And there it is, a nice chocolate ganache….

My shortbread is boring no more!!!