Samoa Popcorn

IMG_0384.JPG

Girl Scout cookies, you can’t, not, love them. My top three are Samoas, Thin Mints and Trefoils. Yours?

With it being peak Girl Scout cookie season, I wanted to repurpose the coveted cookies. I’m taking the flavors of Samoas, and actual Samoa pieces and turning it into a decorated popcorn recipe. With the Oscars this Sunday, it will be the perfect snack at my watch party!

IMG_0378.jpg

My sister, Kathleen and our two best friends Jillian and Taylor get together for almost all award shows (and pageants), especially the Oscars. I never do as well as I set out to, when it comes to actually seeing Oscar nominated movies, but you can bet I’ll be in front of the TV Sunday evening filling out my ballot and snacking on all the appropriate snacks. Exhibit A, this Samoa Popcorn.

IMG_0379.JPG

Are you watching the Oscars this Sunday? Hit up your local scout before the big show, so you too, can make this popcorn for your viewing and tastebud pleasure!

fullsizeoutput_6bfc.jpeg

Samoa Popcorn
yields 6-8 cups

Ingredients:
6-8 cups air popped popcorn (I used 1/2 cup kernels and 1 tbsp. coconut oil, prepared in my Lekue popcorn maker)
1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup butterscotch chips*
2 tsps. coconut oil
1/2 cup sweetened coconut
5 Samoas, roughly chopped

Directions:
Line a rimmed cookie sheet with foil. Pop your popcorn and evenly distribute on your prepared cookie sheet.

In a microwave safe bowl, melt your semi-sweet chocolate chips with 1 tsp. of coconut oil in 30 second intervals. Stirring well between each interval to keep the chips from burning. Once melted, set aside. I did 30 seconds, another 30 seconds and then about 10 seconds at the end. In another microwave safe bowl, do the same with the butterscotch chips and 1 tsp. of coconut oil, then set aside.

Toast your coconut in a small sauté pan, over medium heat. Stirring often, until light brown. Don’t take your eyes off of it, this happens fast. Once light brown, take off the heat and set aside.

Now it’s time to put it all together. Using a small spatula or spoon, drizzle the melted chocolate over the top of the popcorn. Repeat with the melted butterscotch. Sprinkle the toasted coconut over the popcorn. Finish by evenly distributing the Samoa cookie pieces. Let sit until the chocolate is hardened, about an hour. Break up the big chunks of popcorn and serve!

*you can use melted caramel instead of butterscotch chips, but I just really love butterscotch and prefer the way it hardens on the popcorn.

IMG_0380.JPG

Annie

My Oscar Ballot is from Studio DIY!

Bites of My Life

This post combines the past two weeks into one big bite. I got home from vacation late last Wednesday and quickly had to jump right back in to work and social life as I knew it. A big work event, busy playing catch up, a besties birthday and a personal to-go list that is becoming miles long has me typing as fast as I can to get through this post to continue tackling the others. A full round up of our trip to Aspen is in the works! It was too good of a trip not to devote a post to. Catch a glimpse in the snapshots below and stay tuned for the whole shebang!

anthro.jpg

-Channeling “back to school” vibes with my new work bag/backpack - that I can’t get enough of!
-Aunts do Aspen! And Elle does Aspen really well. #gimmethosemoccasins
-We were lucky to get to stay in a big house on our trip. We played to our strengths and cooked a few meals at home. After some delicious nights out, we all agreed our dinners at home were the best!
-The reason that brought us to Aspen, Pop’s 60th birthday! His birthday was actually in June, but there are many reasons to celebrate 3 months later!
-The whole fam damily! Not often does the whole crew get to be together, but I sure love when we do!
-I went on a kale salad kick while in Aspen. It seemed that just about every menu had their own rendition, so I took it upon myself to test them out. Like this kale caesar from Ajax Tavern
-I’ll follow up my kale salad note by mentioning that I washed down my healthy salad with fries at pretty much every meal. It’s called vacation! The infamous truffle fries from Ajax Tavern could not go without ordering.
-Just like one of the beautiful trees around me! We had a successful hike through the Maroon Bells.
-Book 12 out of my 12 in a year goal. Went out with a bang with this one. Can’t recommend it enough.
-The best breakfast casserole returns. Might I add, this is always a crowd pleaser. I brought it to a morning tailgate were it was aside donuts and bagels and many people reached for the casserole over the other options.
-Played cowgirl for the day to celebrate our favorite OSU Cowboy’s birthday in Stillwater!
-After a the kale salad craze on vacation, I knew I was inspired to recreate one at home. This kale quinoa goodness is coming your way later this week.

Annie

Bites of My Life

August 2018: fasted month ever? Y or N? Anyone else feel like we hopped, skipped and jumped right over August. I can't believe September starts this weekend. In preparation for a very busy fall, I spent this weekend laying low aka in bed by 9pm Friday and Saturday night. Despite the early bed times, I didn't skip on the eeeeeats. Take a bite below. 

bites267.jpg

-Crock-pot dinner win! I put 2 chicken thighs with seasonings and 3/4 cup water in my crock-pot Monday morning. Wrapped 3 sweet potatoes in foil and placed them right on top of the chicken. Put it on low while I was at work all day. Came home and shredded the chicken then topped it with guac, salsa, red onion, jalapeño all on the perfectly cooked sweet potatoes. A similar meal found here.
-Breakfast for dinner! The go-to when I don't have any other food in the fridge.
-Blender Bombs, who's heard of them? Excited to start using them today!
-May the #TacoTour commence! Dad and I have instilled a new Friday lunch tradition scoping out all the best taqueria's in OKC. Full round up to come after we add more to our list. First stop was at Taco San Pedro.
-Popcorn dipped in sriracha/mustard. A snack hack that started because of my roommates senior year of college. I still love this odd combination.
-Pool party board! All goods are from TJ's and were eaten at our Saturday pool party in less than 5 minutes. Along with all the other dips, hot dogs, etc. #FriendsWhoEat.
-Post photoshoot at our restaurant on OU's Campus Corner, pre Arbonne Healthy Happy in Norman, had me caught enjoying lunch on campus! 
-Healthy Happy with two girls I'm lucky I get to work alongside.
-Taste testing macarons Sunday night. See why in my post here.

Annie

Bites of My Life

My favorite part of early fall is when the afternoon stays warm, but the mornings and evenings are slightly chilly. Perfect early morning walking weather, preferably with a cup of coffee in hand. A walk a day keeps the doctor away!

Last week/weekend was spent snuggling with my niece, embracing football games and food ;), unapologetically getting my first pumpkin spice latte (almond milk + 1 pump PS), seeing Home Again (HIGHLY recommend) and then followed by a Miss America watch party. 

bites 219.jpg

-Officially Pumpkin Green Smoothie time! One of my favorite smoothie recipes ever. 
-A version of my go to "loaded salad." Apple, rotisserie chicken, roasted sweet potato, red onion, mix of lettuce and homemade balsamic dressing. 
-Still working on my spaghetti squash 4-ways post. This week was shrimp scampi spaghetti squash!
-One with the weights and a new personal record!
-Gabe and I still aren't besties but we are pretty good at taking pictures together!
-Mom and dad's equals unlimited homemade lattes with their Nespresso and my new favorite Milkadamia nut milk. 
-A Mexican spread for the OU vs. Ohio State game. Made a big batch of my Crock-Pot Carnitas with all the fixings and tons of chips and dips. 
-Sister Sunday at Midtown's Commonplace Books
-A throw whatever is in the fridge into a bowl kind of lunch. Results = leftover cold spaghetti squash, cherry tomatoes, roasted red pepper, parsley, red onion, capers and a drizzle of olive oil, salt and pepper!

Annie

p.s. don't miss last week's recipe post for my Double Chocolate Pumpkin Seed Cookies

Turmeric Chicken Zoodle Soup

Yesterday a friend told me I was going to turn into a zoodle. I think this is a rather valid statement. Since I got my spiralizer for Christmas it's been zoodle this, swoodle that (sweet potato noodle...YUP). It's pretty Pinterest of me to be going veggie noodle crazy, but I'm not ashamed. Veggie noodles are genius and have been a life savor for January Whole 30. 

I made a variation of these Lemon Artichoke Zoodles last week, have these Creamy Spinach Sweet Potato Noodles on tap for dinner and this Turmeric Chicken Zoodle Soup is lunch for the week. It's time to invest in a spiralizer. I promise you will find more ways to use it than you think. I have this Kitchen Aid spiralizer and it just clips into my stand mixer and the motor does all the work. 

This Turmeric Chicken Zoodle Soup is way too clever. There is no need to bog it down with starchy pasta noodles when you can ramp up the veg wtih zucchini noodles! The turmeric addition gives it that quintessential yellow color and is just an added boost to what people think of as a cold curing meal. Turmeric is an anti-inflammatory meaning it helps soothe sore muscles, stomach aches, helps with cramps and bloating, and is a natural detoxifier of the gut. Warning, be careful when using turmeric because it can stain everything! Wash your pots and pans immediatly after using.

Turmeric Chicken Zoodle Soup adapted from Damn Delicious
yields 4-6 servings

Ingredients:
2 Tbsp. olive oil, divided
1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1/2-inch chunks
salt and pepper
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 onion, diced
3 carrots, peeled and diced
3 stalks celery, diced
1/2 tsp. ground turmeric
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1/2 teaspoon dried rosemary
4 cups chicken stock
3 medium-sized zucchini, spiralized
Juice of 1 lemon
1 sprig rosemary
2 Tbsp. chopped fresh parsley leaves

Directions:
Start by dicing your chicken, veggies and spiralizing your zucchini. This soup comes together quick so you want everything ready to go!

Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a large stockpot or Dutch oven over medium heat. Season diced chicken with salt and pepper. Add chicken to the stockpot and cook until golden, about 6-8 minutes. 

Add remaining 1 tablespoon oil to the stockpot. Add garlic, onion, carrots and celery. Cook, stirring occasionally, until tender, about 5-6 minutes. Stir in turmeric, thyme and rosemary until fragrant, about 1 minute.

Whisk in chicken stock and 2 cups water; bring to a boil. Stir in zucchini noodles* and chicken; reduce heat and simmer until zucchini is tender, about 3-5 minutes. Stir in lemon juice; season with salt and pepper, to taste.

Serve garnished with rosemary and parsley, if desired.

*If you are meal prepping this soup and plan to keep it in the fridge during the week, wait to add the zucchini noodles. Spiralize your noodles and store them wrapped in a paper towel in a tupperware in the fridge. Add a handful of noodles to each bowl of soup and reheat in the microwave. No mushy noodles!

Annie