…The BSI: Orange Winner is…

I’m going to pull a Brandi and not tell you the winner right away.

I had a TERRIBLE time figuring out what recipe to pick! They all sounded SO incredible, the pictures were fantastic, and I seriously could not decide. I also didn’t want to pick my winner based on whose blog it came from. I’d be far more likely to pick a friend’s blog, or a new blog I thought could use traffic… I originally enlisted Adam’s help to pick the winner, but he flat out said “I’ll be no help, I don’t have a great palate!” So then I called my sister. Some of you know this, but my sister is one of the pastry chefs at Tru Restaurant in Chicago. Tru is one of the fanciest and highest rated restaurant in Chicago, and by far, one of the best meals I’ve ever had in my life. I went once many years ago before my sister worked there, and it was unbelieveable.

Sorry, tangent… So I called my sister. I had her go look at all of the recipes, and let me know what she thought. Our conversation went something like this:

Leigh: Ooh cardamom, I like cardamom.

Me: Yeah, its good.

Leigh: OH orange stir fry? YUM!

Me: Yeah, thats good too.

Leigh: Ok, I really like this one.

Me: Which one?

Leigh: [tells me her pick for BSI winner]

Me: Ok, cool, thanks. I’ll write about you on the blog now!

Leigh: Oh really? Ok!

You’re all DYING now, right? It’s driving you CRAZY!

Alright, I guess I can tell you now.

The BSI: ORANGE Winner is:

Beadie from What I Ate Yesterday with her recipe for Orange-Miso Tofu Stir-Fry!!!!!!

My sister had SUCH wonderful things to say about your recipe! She said that the baked tofu was something she’d never made, and she loved that your recipe included miso, balsamic vinegar, AND sriracha. She added that it was creative!
So, Miss Beadie, you will have to let me know your 3 Penzey’s picks, and everyone else, you’ll have to check Beadie’s page for HER BSI announcement tomorrow!

Congrats Beadie!!

xoxo,

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A Day to Remember

Today was a fantastic Valentine’s Day! I remember thinking during many a Valentine’s Day in college that I’d never love V-Day, I’d just think of it as “Singles Awareness Day” for my entire life. Today was the kind of V-Day that I’d always hoped for!

Rather than boring you with all the details, I’ll show you the day in pictures!

I hope you all had a wonderful day too, whether or not you celebrated Valentine’s Day! The winner for the sushi scarf will be announced in the morning and comments are now CLOSED! Don’t forget to get your BSI entries in by tomorrow night!

Have a great night all!

xoxo,

I Just Wanted To Say…

A valentine for each and every one of you!

A valentine for each and every one of you!

Thank you all so very much for welcoming me into this lovely blogging community! I’ve loved each and every minute of it, and I love each and every one of you!

Adam and I are off to a romantic dinner OUT! I’ll be back later hopefully with pictures if the light is good enough, and tomorrow morning with the sushi scarf winner!

Fun and Fabulous Friday!

Today was a fantastic end to a very long week. I had far too many days where I was up too late and got up too early, and with the full moon on Tuesday, my students were INSANE!

I left work today at 2:15 and made a 45-mile drive southeast to my old stomping grounds to pick up Jenn and another blog reader for my first-ever Blogger meet up! I was SO EXCITED! I spent most of my drive out there antsy and nervous… what if they don’t like me?! What if I’m overdressed? What if they laugh at my food? Then, I met them, and PHEW! They were SO very nice and normal! We headed down to the Chicago Loop to Thai Spoon and Sushi and met up with Rose. She too was so nice and fun! It was really nice to hang with a group of girls.

Let me tell you, there was a LOT of tofu on our table! I got sushi (of course) and my Friday night treat of a Diet Coke.

Yup, Friday Night Sushi!

Yup, Friday Night Sushi!

Also on the table was age-dashi tofu (a Japanese fried tofu dish), fried tofu sticks with peanut sauce, and 2 types of pad thai, one with tofu! The sushi was great, and the conversation was even better!

After dinner, our reader friend took a pic of the 3 bloggers:

EatingBender, OnALobsterPlacemat, imadedinner (thats me!)

EatingBender, OnALobsterPlacemat, imadedinner (thats me!)

After dinner, we dropped Rose off at another restaurant to meet up with her friends, and we headed back to the suburbs. On the way home, I stopped at a childhood favorite (ok, its still a favorite) restaurant to get carry out for Adam. This place is one of my favorites for an exceptionally inexpensive dinner out, and it’s fantastic Mediterranean food. If you’re ever in the Chicagoland area, you MUST go to Pita Inn! (Don’t forget your promise, Jenn!) ANYWAY, I got Adam his food, and got a small babagannouj (roasted egplant dip) for me.

There was warm pita bread too!

There was warm pita bread too!

Then Adam and I split the cupcake that Jenn so generously got for me, and I’ll be hopped up on the sugar for a while!

HOW freaking cute is that?!

HOW freaking cute is that?! Thanks Jenn!

ALSO, there was a package for me when I got home from my mom! She’s on a short vacation visiting her husband’s family, but still managed to send me a Valentine’s present! There was a bright green ProFlowers box on the counter, and when I opened it, there was the most GORGEOUS bouquet of pink, red, and white tulips! Thanks Axor 🙂

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Now, some blogger business!

  • Are you having a hard time coming up with BSI recipes? Check here for some inspiration! Don’t forget to get your BSI entries in by SUNDAY, FEBRUARY 15!!!!
  • I’ll be picking the winner for my 100th Post Giveaway TOMORROW evening at 9 p.m. CDT, and the winner will be announced Sunday morning, so get those entries in!!! I know you want to win the cutest scarf in the world 🙂

Thanks for such a fun night ladies, I had a seriously great time. It was worth every minute of time and every ounce of gas!!!

Where the Buffalo Roam…

Ok, that title is kind of morbid…sorry Veg*ns!!!

I made buffalo burgers tonight, using the same recipe as the turkey burgers from the other night and remembered the bread crumbs! They were absolutely fantastic, and had a nice little kick to them. My favorite thing about cooking buffalo is that it’s similar in nutrition to chicken breast, rather than ground beef.

As a side dish, I made a simple cucumber salad with red wine vinegar, olive oil, salt, pepper, and a little sugar. It was delicious! I also had half of a small avocado, and sweet potato fries.

AMAZING burger!

AMAZING burger!

And now…A FEW ANNOUNCEMENTS!

  • Don’t forget to get your BSI entries in! The deadline is SUNDAY, FEBRUARY 15!
  • I finally decided on a prize for the BSI contest! The winning entry will receive his/her choice of 3 herbs/spices/blends from my FAVORITE spice store, Penzey’s. Go peruse their online store, figure out what you want in case you win, and I’ll order for you upon selection!!
  • You need to enter my 100th post contest! Go to this post and leave a comment. Those of you with blogs, do me a favor (not a requirement) and please link back to that post on your blog! I know more than 34 people want the amazingness that is that sushi scarf!

Have an excellent night all! I’m off to have more sweet potatoes and watch my favorite shows! I’m SO VERY EXCITED for tomorrow night!

My 100th Post Giveaway!

Ok, it’s really my 102nd, but who’s counting??

You’ve seen over the last 3 months (Has it really been that long?) that I have a HUGE obsession with all things sushi. My fiance and I go for sushi as often as we can afford, heck, we even got engaged over sushi! I’ll even go to the grocery store and get sushi for breakfast sometimes! I love the detail that goes into making sushi, and all the thought that goes into the flavors in the different rolls we get. I love the ritual of making it, the skill… ok, and the cute little table things that the sushi comes served on, the chopsticks, the tiny little dishes that the soy sauce goes into… get it? I freaking love sushi.

I also love my other random hobby (besides cooking and blogging), crocheting. I love zoning out with a hook and some yarn and just going nuts. Heck, I even crocheted a hat for my Secret Cupid! I decided a while back (just ask Beadie) that for my first giveaway, I would somehow combine my two hobbies.

What?? Crocheting and SUSHI?!

So I decided to make this scarf for you all to attempt to win (rules below).

100% handmade!

100% handmade!

It’s a nice long scarf, perfect for the coldest of days, or for those of you in warmer climates, I know you like to ski, or visit colder climates occasionally, so you’ll still want to enter.

BUT WAIT!

This scarf has a secret. When it’s rolled up, it successfully combines 2 of my favorite things:

IT'S SUSHI!!!

IT'S SUSHI!!!

It’s fat-free, salt-free, wheat-free, rice-free, gluten-free, vegan-friendly, completely and utterly wearable SUSHI! And the best part my lovelies? I made it. I can’t make edible sushi to save my life, but I can certainly make wearable sushi!

You want this scarf? Just leave a comment below!! If you have a blog and want to link back to this post, you can, but it’s not a requirement.

I’ll use random.org to pick a random number on Saturday, February 14! As much as I love my Canadian and other international readers, I’m a teacher and can’t afford the shipping to countries other than the U.S, so this is open to U.S. readers only.

Oh, and by the way, we had pizza for dinner.

Thin crust with mushrooms, green peppers, and sausage. YUM!

Thin crust with mushrooms, green peppers, and sausage. YUM!

Don’t forget to get those BSI entries coming!