A VIRTUOUS COCKTAIL #STRAWBERRY/BANANA SMOOTHIE

With just 3 ingredients, I’m set for the morn.

KALE AND BLUEBERRY SMOOTHIE

It was quite a refreshing treat to indulge in a kale/blueberry smoothie. With a handful of  greens(kale), blueberries,  ginger root,freshly squeeze orange juice and splash of water, I allowed my standing blender to do the work.

BLENDED INGREDIENTS FOR KALE/BLUEBERRY SMOOTHIE
BLENDED INGREDIENTS FOR KALE/BLUEBERRY SMOOTHIE

WHO SAYS I CAN’T PLAY WITH FOOD? #RICE/CABBAGE WITH A HINT OF CURRY/CRANBERRIES

The other day, I felt like a kid again. I like to experiment and sometimes take my dishes to different and quirky level. What’s the worse that could occur? I just wouldn’t  try that again.My palate and I were in a colorful and odd place.

Well, that’s what I said to myself as I chopped a few wedges of cabbage to join some sautéed onions in a drizzle of olive oil.

VEGGIES BEING SAUTEED FOR JASMINE RICE WITH HINT OF CURRY POWDER
VEGGIES BEING SAUTEED FOR JASMINE RICE WITH HINT OF CURRY POWDER

I decided to go Mediterranean/Caribbean with my Jasmine rice of choice. I wanted a hint of color to my lily-white rice. After I sautéed and seasoned along my onions, cabbage and garlic, I added rice and allowed the grains to be coated with oil.

I was in culinary heaven as I watched my ingredients transformed to light yellow in appearance. I also added a sprig of thyme, and scallion. It seemed like I was going toss in the kitchen sink. But, I pulled back.

Rice was covered with lid under low heat after adding water. As soon as it came to a fluffy finish, thinly chopped bell peppers were added. I wasn’t finished. I desired a contrast, but cohesive in flavors and decided to toss in dried cranberries.

JASMINE RICE/CABBAGE WITH A HINT OF CURRY POWDER AND DRIED CRANBERRIES
JASMINE RICE/CABBAGE WITH A HINT OF CURRY POWDER AND DRIED CRANBERRIES

All the flavors played off each other. The curry wasn’t overpowering; but, provided a taste that reminded me of childhood and perhaps what would be served in a Mediterranean kitchen. The cranberries took it to another level. They gave a beautiful and contrasting tart-sweet taste to the dish that surprised my taste buds.

I served rice with  grilled citrus shrimp and vegetables along with a serving baked orange-flavored chicken wings. Fresh wedges of seasoned vine-ripe tomatoes completed my dish.

EVERY ONCE IN A WHILE, ONE SHOULD’VE A SCREWDRIVER AFTERNOON #SIESTA

I couldn’t help myself. It was the middle of the afternoon. I was hot and quite weary from my ‘laboring’ as my of us do. Guys, I had an excuse; it’s my day off (well, night off). And, what does one do on their day off? I had to unwind and let my weave down. The other day, a good friend of mine brought over a bottle of vodka. I couldn’t ignore the Grey Goose on my counter. Moreover some fresh Florida oranges were perched in close proximity. You talk about a perfect match!

In rapid fashion, I squeezed a juicy orange and added same to a glass loaded with ice cubes. To that I added a shot (well, it was more of a shot and a half of vodka. I hope it wasn’t two.) Already, I was super-excited and couldn’t wait to pucker-up to this smooth and refreshing cocktail. I did a quick pull with my straw. Yes guys, I love to drink my cocktail with a straw. Hmmm, the taste was just as I thought; quite cool, citrusy and smooth.

As I went for my left-overs of curried chicken,

CURRIED CHICKEN THIGHS WITH STEAMED ASPARAGUS
CURRIED CHICKEN THIGHS WITH STEAMED ASPARAGUS

I spotted some left-over fresh pineapple juice I made over the week-end.20150628_154535 (2)

I had a perfect plan. As I reheated my curried chicken, I fetched pineapple juice. And what do you know? I added a splash and stirred. Oh, by the way, I’m having supper for lunch.  I did a second taste. Guys, I was on cloud nine. It brought back sweet memories when I used to guzzle down a few of these glasses. Oh, but not now! I’m a super conscious gal who believes in a fine balance. One or two I choose to go.

After indulging in my curried left-overs, I reached for my stiff screwdriver (well, perhaps it was more than a screwdriver).  I sipped my way to a better place. With my air-conditioning close to 69 degrees, I reached for my throw, and settled in that sweet spot on my couch. ‘La la’ land was beckoning and I had to surrender.

Cheers!

TRANSFORMED MY PINEAPPLE INTO A VIRTUOUS COCKTAIL##PINEAPPLE/GINGER COCKTAIL

FRESH PINEAPPLE SLICES
FRESH PINEAPPLE SLICES

I hate when that happens. There I was feeling good (maybe, a little over the moon) about my find. Yes guys, I fetched yours truly (I thought at the time) a superb specimen, on sale, (well, that’s what they said) for  $1.50. I couldn’t complain. Though it was not ripe; I had fantastic hope. And, that’s the thing about wholesome produces from nature, sometimes I’m  lucky to obtain a perfect one and a few times I’m disappointed.

But, what can I say? As long as it’s coming from Mother Earth, I’m ecstatic. Anyway, back to my dear pineapple. Brought the beauty home and proudly placed it on my kitchen counter as I usually do with fruits. In less than a few days she started permeating my space. Hmmmm, I knew the time was at hand. She was ready to be utilized in my fashion. I couldn’t wait to peel her.

I’m not tooting my horn; but, I do think I’ve mastered peeling a pineapple. Within a few minutes, I was able to peel and discard of the skin from my golden goodness. By now, the juice was dripping on my cutting board. I couldn’t wait to taste the beautiful flesh. I was anxious. I could sense  my heart beating a tad faster. What the heck! This is just a pineapple.

PEELED PINEAPPLE
PEELED PINEAPPLE

And then, I snipped and placed it to my mouth. Guys, at first taste, I didn’t believe. I thought, “maybe, my taste buds were playing tricks on me.” So, I sampled once more. I was so disappointed. How could a perfectly good-looking specimen turn out to be such sour grape? Dejected, I placed my slices in a tupper ware in the refrigerator.

Two days later (today), I revisited my golden one. I still had hope. And so, I grabbed my cutting board once more and decided to make a virgin cocktail from a few slices of my pineapple. In addition to that I reached for root ginger and fresh Florida orange juice along with cold water.

INGREDIENTS FOR PINEAPPLE/GINGER COCKTAIL
INGREDIENTS FOR PINEAPPLE/GINGER COCKTAIL

After a quick chop of pineapple and ginger, I placed same in my standing blender along with water and orange juice. For me, there was no need for sugar or any sweetener because the orange juice provided natural sugar  for my cocktail. ‘Big-up’ to my standing blender, it yielded a smooth finish. Pineapple and ginger cocktail was garnished with fresh pineapple and ginger root.

Guys, I felt vindicated. My golden wonder came through for me. I was on cloud nine.I got more than my money’s worth.  Salud! By the way, I’ll be grilling the remainder of my pineapple slices. This action should bring out the natural sugar within. Yippee!!

WHOOPIE!! IT’S THE WEEK-END, AND, I THINK I DESERVE A SCREWDRIVER!

INGREDIENTS/APPARATUS FOR SCREWDRIVER
INGREDIENTS/APPARATUS FOR SCREWDRIVER

Ready or not, the week-end is here. Guys, it’s Friday. And, I do think I’ve the right to let loose just a wee bit and let down my hair(well, my weave). What’s a week-end if one cannot enjoy a cocktail?

Been sometime since I’ve gone here. Used to be my fave. What brought me here? Have no idea; but, sometimes odd things just ‘pop’ in my mind. For heaven’s sake, it’s TGIF! Thought I deserved a stiff glass of screwdriver. Gosh, used to chug down quite a few of these ‘back in the days.’  But, yours truly have evolved and moved on to wine once in a while. Love me a glass of pinot grigio, cabernet sauvignon, merlot, etc.

A screwdriver drink is basically, vodka and orange juice. I understand the drink got its name from stirring with a screwdriver. Can’t say if it’s the flat head or slotted screwdriver. I made a dash for my screwdrivers. You never know when a gal needs a few of these tools.

FLAT HEAD AND SLOTTED SCREWDRIVERS
FLAT HEAD AND SLOTTED SCREWDRIVERS

There was no way I was planning to stir my screwdriver with these tools, but, I wanted to nab the inspiration. Then again, you never know.

Some drinkers chase their screwdrivers with orange soda. However, that wasn’t in my plan when I had perfectly good and wholesome juicy oranges from the sunny state of Florida. I fetched me a glass (well, it is more of a stemless wine glass). I rubbed the rim with a combination of sugar and salt after wetting the rim with orange juice. Rubbing the rim with citrus juice allows the sugar/salt to stick.

Guys, it was time, I stacked my glass with some ice cubes, juiced an orange and fished out the pits. I took a taste; oh, it was so sweet!  I poured the golden and smooth juice in my glass and topped it with a couple of shots of vodka. Then, it was time. Instead of my screwdriver, I went for my fancy stirrer.

Guys, I took I sip. My screwdriver tasted quite smooth and ‘virtuous’. I thought of adding an extra shot, but then I remembered that this drink is a ‘creeper’. I was quite comfortable with one drink.

Shortly after that, I made my way to ‘lala land’. I do think I’ll revisit this drink every once in a while. Salud to this  ‘old pal’, screwdriver.