Slow-Cooker Chicken and Mushroom Farro RisottoFall is arriving in Nashville! The mornings and evenings are becoming delightfully crisp and cool, which is getting me excited for hearty cold-weather food, like stews, soups, and risottos. I recently came across this recipe for Slow-Cooker Chicken and Mushroom Farro Risotto and was intrigued. I love risotto and I really love slow-cooker meals, but I had never tried combining the two. The recipe was doubly intriguing, as it uses farro for the risotto, instead of the traditionally-used arborio rice. For those of you unfamiliar with farro (like I was until recently), it’s a hearty, nutty, wonderfully-textured ancient grain. So, this recipe got me to make risotto in the slow-cooker for the first time AND cook with farro for the first time. Gotta love trying new things in the kitchen!

Everything about this is SO delicious: the juicy, fall-apart tender chicken, the wonderfully flavorful mushrooms/onions/garlic, and the cooked-to-perfection farro, all in a truly divine, amazingly creamy parmesan sauce. I first made this on a night when my husband was not home for dinner, as he’s not a huge mushroom fan, so I didn’t think he’d dig it. After I made it + raved about how much Fearless Baby and I loved it, he asked if I’d be willing to make it again for him to try, too. I did a week later, and even though he admittedly didn’t devour every single mushroom, he said it was one of the best slow-cooker meals (and one of the best mushroom meals) he’s ever had. If this can win over a mushroom-hater, it must be truly amazing, right?! You’ve gotta give it a try + report back!

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Pasta With Carrots, Risotto-Style

by amy on 3 September 2014

Pasta With Carrots, Risotto-StyleIf you’ve followed my blog for any length of time, you know that I’m a HUGE pasta lover. Pasta dinners are pretty much my #1 go-to food, especially if I’m feeding a bunch of people (or want some awesome leftovers for the week). This particular pasta dish – Risotto-Style Pasta With Carrots — is one that I’ve made many times, but never photographed/blogged about until now, because it gets gobbled up so quickly! So, the last time I made it, I made sure to set aside a few minutes to take a couple quick pictures, so I could share it with y’all.

First, onions, pasta, + carrots are toasted in butter, bringing out complex, sweet, nutty flavors. Then, hot broth is added gradually to cook the pasta risotto-style, which results in a creamy, lush pasta. Finally, more butter + parmesan are added, adding even more richness and creaminess to the dish. The original recipe calls for carrots, which I did use here, but my husband (wisely!) pointed out that this would be great with lots of different types of root vegetables. Parsnips, butternut squash, and sweet potatoes would all be a fabulous substitute for the carrots, especially in the fall, when they’re in season. I can’t wait for y’all to try this dish – I promise that you are going to love it!

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Five-Minute Strawberry Cheesecake Mousse

by amy on 24 August 2014

5-Minute Strawberry Cheesecake Mousse {Gluten-Free, Grain-Free, + Vegetarian}

Today, I’m participating in a fun blogger event — the Secret Recipe Club. How does it work? Every blogger is secretly assigned another blog + chooses a recipe from that blog to make. On reveal day (today!), all of our posts go up at the same time, + everyone gets to see who was assigned to their blog, which recipe they chose, + how it turned out. Fun, huh?

I was assigned Natural Noshing, a fantastic blog full of tons of amazing-looking recipes. (Seriously, I bookmarked 9 recipes to try!) I decided to make Nora’s Five-Minute Strawberry Cheesecake Mousse, because it looked scrumptious, I had all the ingredients on hand, and it sounded like something that Fearless Baby would love. So, during Baby’s naptime, I quickly put it together, and sampled a bowl. It was excellent – light, wonderfully refreshing, and delightfully creamy. I loved the flavor of the chocolate shavings with the creamy mousse, so I decided to take it one step further and make a delicious parfait by layering it with chocolate pudding. Mmm. As I suspected, Fearless Baby loved it! And since it’s full of healthy stuff, I felt good about her eating it, too. And for those with dietary restrictions, it’s gluten-free, grain-free, + vegetarian as well. Whoop!

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Asian Sesame Beef Skewers

by amy on 13 August 2014

Asian Sesame Beef SkewersWe live in a part of the country (Tennessee) where we can comfortably grill outside at least 6 months of the year. However, my favorite time of the year to grill is now – the last month or so of summer, when the weather is starting to cool down just a bit. The daytimes are still hot, but the evenings start to get that slight cooler feel of fall. That hints that autumn is just around the corner, and motivates me to use the grill as much as possible while we still can. So, for one of our many grilled-out meals recently, we gave a new recipe a try – these Asian Sesame Beef Skewers. And they were SO wonderful that I wanted to share the recipe right away so y’all can give them a try soon, too!

These skewers were AMAZING. The marinade is wonderfully flavorful and complex. It has saltiness + sweetness from the soy and sugar, some punch from the garlic, ginger, and red pepper, and great depth from the sesame oil. The sticky, delicious marinade caramelizes beautifully on the grill, leaving super scrumptious, charred grill marks. While I thought I made enough for leftovers, these were so tasty that we literally gobbled down every last bite. This fabulous recipe is going on regular rotation in our household + I hope y’all love it as much as we do!

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Raspberry-Chocolate Chip Frozen Yogurt

by amy on 6 August 2014

Raspberry-Chocolate Chip Frozen YogurtWe’re still in the midst of the hot, humid Nashville summertime, and there are few things that are quite as refreshing in hot weather as a frozen treat. Ice cream, frozen yogurt, popsicles and slushies – I love ‘em all this time of year. So, I thought recently, what a perfect time to finally give my new(ish) ice cream maker a try! I looked up a ton of possible ice cream and fro yo recipes, and settled on this Raspberry-Chocolate Chip Frozen Yogurt. Berries and chocolate are one of my all-time favorite combinations, so I had a good feeling that this would be a success.

And y’all, this frozen yogurt turned out SO deliciously. Such a fabulous recipe to break in my new ice cream maker! The naturally-tart raspberries mean that this frozen yogurt isn’t overwhelmingly sweet. The tart berries balance wonderfully with the sweet, rich chocolate chips and the slight tang of the yogurt. The texture is also perfect – not quite as icy as sorbet, but not quite as creamy as straight-up ice cream — it’s about halfway in between, which I love. And did I mention that it’s pretty darn healthy? With less than 150 calories per serving, but 4 good grams of protein, you can enjoy this scrumptious frozen treat without having to feel guilty about it. You can’t beat that!

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