My Cooking Philosophy


Just another day at the office…


HA – I wish! ;) I had the day off from my actual job, but had a bunch of other stuff to get done today, so I parked it on the couch for a couple hours this morning and got down to it!

(ps: my in-laws got me these Muk Luks for Christmas and they have literally not left my feet since then. I’m not a huge “slipper” girl, but they are fantastic!)


I zipped through all the important stuff while sipping coffee and catching up with the Today Show (is there anything better?!) then dug into the fun stuff like loading a ton of pictures onto the digital picture frame my parents got me for Christmas!


I’m taking the frame to work where I’ll be able to smile at rotating snapshots of my nephew Finn, friends, family and…

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wedding cake-gate. All day long. I could not stop laughing once again over those pictures. Ohhhh, good times with baked goods!


Digital picture frames are such a great thing. I could stare at them for hours!


I finally got my booty up around noon to head over to the gym where my headphones bit the dust. :(


I was all prepared to sweat it out while catching up with House Hunters International, but when I wiggled the end around because the audio was warbled, the whole thing popped off! Drat!


Got to zip through this treadmill routine to the sound of my own huffing & puffing instead:

Time Speed Incline
0-2 4.0 1%
2-5 6.0 1%
5-10 6.5 1%
10-15 7.0 1%
15-20 7.5 1%
20-25 Increase by .1 every minute until you get to 8.0 1%
25-30 4.0 1%
30-35 7.0 1%
34-40 6.5 1%
40-45 4.0 1%
Total: 4.65 miles  

Gosh I hate sprinting at 8.0 mph. I feel like my short little legs are going to spin right off the belt! 8O

I was dripping by the end and definitely ready for lunch once I got home. First I made myself an appetizer of cheese & crackers.


Ben went to TJ’s last week to pick out some goodies for us, and came back with these Multigrain & Flaxseed Water Crackers. MY HUSBAND BOUGHT MULTIGRAIN & FLAXSEED CRACKERS. Rejoice! Go Ben!


He’s also crazy for cheese, and picked up a block of English Coastal Cheddar to pair with said crackers.


Cut and pour.


Loved the crackers, but the jury’s still out re: the cheese. It tasted like a mix of cheddar and parmesan – and I don’t LOVE parmesan. Edible though, for sure.


Chomped while I was waiting for this masterpiece to do its thang in the oven!


That’d be roasted tofu & asparagus with Trader Joe’s Thai-Style Lime Pilaf.


Roasted tofu & asparagus? Bomb. Thai-style lime pilaf? Mehhh???!! It had a little too much lemongrass in it, me thinks. I didn’t hate it, but I didn’t love it. Good texture though. :)


I was very proud of myself for not letting social media get the best of the rest of my afternoon and paid bills, did some freelance work, returned emails and was, in general, very productive! Social media is the biggest time suck of them all.

At any rate, you knew something else was going to be made with that chicken this week – and you’re right! Tonight I made Giada’s Linguine with Chicken Ragu for dinner!


I like Giada’s recipes because her cooking philosophy is pretty much the same as mine: fewer ingredients is better + make it simple & healthy but delicious.


This recipe definitely fits the bill. It starts by sautéing shallots & garlic in EVOO with chicken thigh meat, which I subbed with my leftover shredded chicken.

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After the shallots are soft, you add in a splash of dry white wine, although I had to use chicken broth. My wine rack is full of reds & sweet whites!


(IKEA :arrow: $10!)


Finally you add in a wee pinch of dried rosemary,


and 2 cups of your favorite marinara sauce.

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I think we all know what kind that would be for me… ;)

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Toss with linguine and serve!

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Monday night at my house growing up was spaghetti night, and this totally takes me back. Slow-cooked taste, minimal effort.


Plus, hello, it stands up to the fork test! :D


Photos taken outside because:

  1. It is GORGEOUS out there – in the upper 30s!
  2. It is staying lighter and lighter out in the afternoons which warms my heart to no end. I know it’s the first of January, but I’m so excited for Spring! 8)

In other news, THE BACHELOR IS BACK tonight, and not just any bachelor, oh no, it’s the most hated bachelor of all time – BRAD WOMACK! Muwahahaha!


Brad got a bad rap at the end of his season, but he’s probably my favorite Bachelor of all time. He seems the most sane and with it out of all of ’em.

I’ll admit, when he rejected BOTH girls on his final show, I was outraged.

“What an idiot!” I shouted, as my blood began to boil. “Who does he think he is?!

Now that I’ve had some time to reflect, I clearly realize that he did everyone a favor. Why would he keep dating a woman – or worse, PROPOSE – if he didn’t feel anything for her?

Leading Deanna on was crap, for sure, but I feel bad for the guy. He was just trying to do the right thing.

At any rate, I am jazzed to see the premiere tonight. Looks like from the previews that the women on the show didn’t know Brad was their Bachelor and one of them gets a little slap-happy.

Like, she literally slaps him.

This is going to be good.

‘night! :D


Have you ever had to make an unpopular decision, even though it was the right one to make? Who’s your favorite Bachelor of all time?

What’s your cooking philosophy?

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  1. I will gladly take that cheese off your hands. It sounds just up my alley!

  2. Kris Porter 01.03.2011

    Kristin! Where did you get that wine rack? I’ve been searching for a neat wine rack for my sister-in-law and they seem to be almost impossible to find!

  3. Candy 01.03.2011

    Send me your cheese. LOVE that stuff! Are you excited that Whole Foods (aka Whole Paycheck) is cruising DeMo? Yay!!

  4. The Bachelor is the only show I watch; I am so pumped for it tonight! I’d have to say my favorite bachelorette of all time was Trista, probably because she actually fell in love with Ryan and they are one of the few couples who got married!!

  5. Digital picture frames are so cool and I love your wine rack!

  6. Daisy 01.03.2011

    I was awaiting your take on the bachelor!! I didnt watch his season so all i could think is what an A** and I was going to boycott. ok, you’ve convinced me I should watch :)

  7. jane 01.03.2011

    too bad we dont live in the same town-we’d be fast friends, honestly does it get better than coffee and the today show??? also i laugh out loud with how seriously you discuss reality tv shows. and im not laughing at you, but with you because i feel the same way :-)

  8. Danielle 01.03.2011

    I also got a digital picture frame and I love it!

  9. Sarah 01.03.2011

    Your lunch looks delicious! I wont be watching the bachelor because the new movie Craiglist Killer is on lifetime! bahh, can’t wait!

  10. I love digital picture frames, too! Going to invest in one very soon! I need to get myself to work up to 7mph on the treadmill. I think I’d fall on my face on 8! Haha! Oh, and cheese and crackers is the BEST SNACK EVER!

  11. spenser 01.03.2011

    Poor Brad!! He is bring put through the ringer and its only the first episode! Totally agree that he did everyone a favor by not proposing to either girl if his heart wasn’t in it. This is going to be a good season!

  12. My philosophy is similar to yours. Simple, tasty, and healthy.
    During the school year, add speedy to that list as well.

    I used to watch The Bachelor with my roomie. Now my husband insists we watch the Orange Bowl instead. Men… ;)

  13. Stephanie 01.03.2011

    Digital frames are the best! They make great presents for parents/grandparents. :)

  14. erica 01.03.2011

    i have only watched 2 seasons of the bachelor, the andrew firestone & andy baldwin seasons….i was heartbroken when their relationships didn’t last. i stopped watching since. hahaha.

  15. Lauren 01.03.2011

    I love Giada’s philosophy as well. Although I do believe some of her cooking philosophy may be to look as drop dead gorgeous as you can while cooking and it will make the food taste better. ;)

    SO I just saw like 5 min of the Bachelor and I had NO idea what a scandal last season was. Juicy!!!!

    Have a good night hun.

  16. Healthy Honey 01.03.2011

    I knew I liked you!!! ;) I agree 100% with your Bachelor comments!!!!!! Brad is my all-time fave Bachelor, and I couldn’t believe everyone had such a problem with his choice the first-go-round. He did the right thing by not proposing… unlike all the rest of ’em who propose under pressure and then head for splitsville soon after.

  17. Kayla 01.03.2011

    Those slippers look awesome. And totally jealous of your day off. I really want to try tofu but am so afraid of it, maybe I need to hop over to Iowa and have you make me some :P

  18. Bridget 01.03.2011

    Unpopular decision…….I have distanced myself from a toxic “friend”. I have paid the price for it because now some others are distant to me but my life is BEYOND better and literally stress-free. I walked away knowing that life is too short to be manipulated. Sorry, long answer.

    Fave bachelor……haven’t been able to stomach that show. Having very limited TV time puts me in the 30 min comedy category like The Office, Arrested Development (RIP), and 30 Rock. I like to laugh!

    Cooking philosophy……..simple, healthy, feeds 5 or more. :)

  19. Totally agree with you on the bachelor thing – it may have been unpopular but it was probably the right thing!

    I haven’t watched all the seasons, but I love Trista & Ryan. And I hate Jake.

  20. i love Giada’s style too…and even if it’s not healthy, enjoy the heck out of it anyway :)

  21. Cindee Ellenbarger 01.03.2011

    Oh we just bought a bottle of that same Gascon Malbec. Can’t wait to pop it open. A friend recommended it. We will see…

  22. All that food looks so good! I could eat cheese & crackers ALL day.

    The bachelor seems like kind of a douche. I wish I had a favorite one?? But they all seem like they get pretty bad…maybe all the fame gets to their head.

  23. dmcgirl 01.03.2011

    Hi IGE~

    My philosophy is easy and fast and as healthy as that can be as well as weightwatcher friendly.

    When you have kids, life gets a little more complicated. ;-)

    Sometimes just getting dinner on the table in 5 minutes is my ONLY philosophy!

  24. The “sunny” pasta pics outside are refreshing to see after a bunch of dark, winter photos.

    Can’t wait for The Bachelor – 5 minutes!

  25. Rose 01.03.2011

    I’ve always wanted a digital frame – so glad you like yours. I might have to purchase one!

  26. Anna @ ciaotochow 01.03.2011

    My mom and I have snuggled up on the couch every Monday night for the past million seasons of the Bachelor – it’s our date night! (We even had your ham, turkey & apricot paninis and roasted brussel sprouts for dinner tonight to fuel us up for the marathon t.v. watching event :)) I really loved the Trista/Ryan season (perhaps because they actually are still together?!)…but I must say I find Brad pretty darn attractive. Can’t wait for the rest of the season!

  27. Hope 01.04.2011

    That wine rack is awesome! It’s so cool looking! I love Giada. I definitely need to try this Giada recipe. I love the Bachelor! I am hooked on that show and the Bachelorette. I always watch it. I think my most favorite season was when Trista was the Bachelorette and she picked Ryan. That was just the most romantic season! :)

  28. MOM 01.04.2011

    Like Bridget I made the unpopular decision to also permenantly distance myself from a supposed “friend” (from a group of friends) that I was her target and toxic to me and then my family. It was/is hard because only certain people see her for what kind of person she really is.
    My cooking philosophy? Make something easy and healthy-if it has more ingredients than I can skim through in a few seconds-it’s off the list to make!

  29. Julie S. 01.04.2011

    I think Brad is hot, too. I also really liked that doctor (he has his own show now)… was his name Dr. Stork??? I liked Jessie, too, but he kind of got tainted also after he dumped Melissa on nat’l TV & went back to #2, but he ended up marrying her so he obviously made the right choice – just kind of came off as a douchebag the way he handled it.

  30. That sounds so good!
    And I only started watching the Bachelor recently so I didn’t see his season but from what I can tell, you’re right… yeah, it sucks BIG TIME for those girls but he did what was best for him AND them in the long run. Sometimes you have to do what’s right for you, no matter what others say.. because YOU are the one who has to live with the decision!

  31. Jessica 01.04.2011

    Yum your tofu lunch looked really good! Totally agree with you on the bachelor thing too, I am so jazzed to watch it today on tivo!

  32. Cass 01.04.2011

    keep your eye on that slapper….i believe she sticks around for quite a long time :)

  33. Pamela 01.04.2011

    Our cooking philosophies are basically the same, and I love Giada’s linguine with chicken ragu – it’s been in my file for years!

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