Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Weekend Wrap Up!

Hello friends! It's Tuesday morning... but it feels like a Monday... I have always loved a "short week"! Even better is we have no after school activities today and we are having Shrimp Tacos for dinner (sharing that recipe below). Oh Happy Tuesday!

Here's a little look into our long weekend......

My goal on Saturday was to pull out my Fall and Halloween stuff to decorate. I had two really excited helpers that fizzled out on me and headed outside to play. Despite losing my decorating team, I managed to get the job done. Here's a peek at our mantle...

We had plans for an Oktoberfest at a friend's house and I made a cheddar beer dip to bring along. I thought soft pretzels would be a great dipper...and they were! But holy cow...they were a little more involved than I expected. After making the dough, then letting it rest, I had to roll out and cut into pieces. The pieces went into a baking soda water bath, then brushed with an egg wash and sprinkled with sea salt before popping them in the oven. I will definitely make them again now that I know what to expect. My only issue is they are best when eaten warm. That makes it a little tricky if you are bringing them somewhere. But they were still delish and I linked the recipe I used here.
I also had some chunks of pumpernickel & veggies in case of a #pretzelfail

We had such a fun night! Maybe too fun...Sunday morning started slowly...with coffee and a backyard fire

Ella was off to a friend's birthday party and we laid low with some football and made chili for dinner. A Buffalo Bills win and homemade chili made for a pretty perfect Sunday!

The kids and I visited our local cider mill for apple cider slushies and fresh apple donuts. What a treat!! 
I do love Summer.. but the Fall is pretty great too!!

We are serving up Shrimp tacos tonight! Simple and delicious! Build your own taco bar is a family favorite.. for two reasons.,,,,

1. You can build your own- kids love being hands on and "creating" their dinner
2. I recreate Chipotles' rice... with a little healthier twist.

As for the tacos.. I switch it up all the time... shrimp, chicken, pork, ground turkey, steak, tilapia, mahi.., I will pretty much put anything in a taco!! 
Shrimp tacos. I just grill the shrimp and then toss with a pinch of taco seasoning. 

The "Chipotle" style rice is quite simple.
1. Steam brown rice
2. Add one can of rinsed black beans & 2 TBSP of chopped cilantro
3. Sprinkle with salt (I use pink himalayan salt) and the juice of half a lime. Add more or less of these two pending on your taste.

Here's a pic of a pulled chicken taco bar. I lay out a bunch of toppings and let everyone build their own.

 A few tips to keep the taco bar "better for you"

1. I always use plain Greek yogurt in place of sour cream....nobody notices the difference. 
2. Put out extra veggies.. I usually put out tomatoes & sweet peppers. The kids will just munch on them or add them into their tacos. Always good to get in some extra veggies
3. I use very little of a seasoning pack to keep the sodium down. You can also make your own. I add extra cumin if I want to up the flavor a bit.
4. Slaw is a great topping for fish tacos and gives you another vegetable. I use red cabbage finely sliced. Make a simple dressing with plain greek yogurt, lime juice, chopped cilantro and salt & pepper. Mix together with the cabbage and it's a great addition to the taco bar.

Well that's a little bit of life lately for us! This week I'll be sharing some tips on meal planning and fall organization. Hope to see you soon....there's always room for one more at our Family Table.

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