Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Trent's 26th Birthday

July 18th was a great summer day!
We woke up, studied for several hours for our anatomy lab test. Then we took our three-hour lab together (cute, eh?) working on cadavers and studying muscles of the legs.
Trent's working on his artistic er, abilities. My drawing, although not to scale, is beautifully displayed on the left.

When we left, we were stopped in the hallway. "Trent!" Two voices called from behind us. It was our student T.A.'s from anatomy lab. They had brought Trent some birthday cake! :) We spend so much time in that lab with the T.A.'s and cadavers that we almost feel like family. Darrin and Paige had remembered Trent's birthday and brought some cake and brownies down the hall. We chatted and enjoyed the chocolatey-goodness! How nice! I wish I'd had a camera. There we sat, eating cake out of the Pyrex containers with lab-goggle indentations on our foreheads and smiles on our faces.

We went home and started to prepare dinner: chicken on the grill with potatoes and corn on the cob. I surprised Trent with a charcoal grill for his birthday. He was a grill master and the whole meal was quite delicious! He joked that he received "big boy" presents this year with the grill and the tool set my parents gave him after Sunday dinner the day before.

Marinated chicken on the grill. Yum!
But the day didn't end there! After dinner, I presented him with one last gift: two new t-shirts. We have a running joke that Trent's entire wardrobe consists of UVU apparel, so we're working on diversifying it before we arrive in Kentucky. :) After presents and cake, we played some Rook with Mac and JoAnn. Mac and I lost :( but at least the birthday boy won!

9:30 rolled around and we headed to Megaplex 8 at Thanksgiving Point for Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2. Alex and Kristen, my sisters, joined us for the affair. Good movie and good "closure" according to Trent, who is an avid Harry Potter fan. He cites this day as one of the best birthdays he can remember. I am very grateful for him and the wonderful husband, friend, and person he is. I am constantly amazed at his goodness, patience, and sense of humor through thick and thin. I just adore him.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Summer Cooking

I love to eat delicious, fresh, and flavorful food. I love to make it just as much as I love to eat it! These past four months with my in-laws, Mac and JoAnn, I've had many opportunities to make food for more than just myself and Trent. It's been fun. I'm sure they are used to the same meals (albeit very well-prepared and well-rotated meals) over and over in their 50 years of marriage. It has been fun to prepare meals for them and to have access to their brand new gas grill, too. It seems food and the enjoyment of it knits families together for some of the best summer afternoons. I'd like to share some of those recipes with you in this post!

serves 8 
1 loaf French Bread
1 lb roma tomatoes 
1/4 cup fresh Basil
3 garlic cloves minced 

  • 1. Place the cut tomatoes into a bowl and salt them. Let sit for 10 minutes. 

  • Add the garlic, basil and olive oil, stir to combine and let sit for another 10 minutes.

  • 2. Cut the french bread into thick (1 inch) slices. 

    Grill the slices until just toasted and slightly charred, about 1 minute per side.

    3. Top the grilled bread slices with the tomato mixture and serve immediately.

    serves 4-6
    3 c water
    1 c lemon juice (not lemonade!)
    1 c sugar
    2 c berries (fresh or frozen)
    lemon slices for garnish
    1. Put 1 c of water, lemon juice, sugar, and berries in blender.

    2. Blend until berries are pureed and sugar is dissolved. 

    3. In a pitcher, combine blended mixture with 2 cups water. 

    4. If fresh strawberries were used, add some crushed ice to the pitcher. Garnish with lemon slices, if desired.

    This is probably my favorite lemonade to make right now. It's so easy and I usually use frozen as the flavor is almost the same as fresh and it's cheaper than buying fresh berries. Try whatever berry combinations you'd like! Blackberry-raspberry was so good the other night!

    serves 3-4
    1/4 c soy sauce 
    1/4 c brown sugar
    1/2 tsp ground ginger
    2 tsp minced garlic 
    2 tsp apricot jam
    2 chicken breasts
    8 green onions 
    (cut to use on the skewers as shown below,
     or to be chopped and used in the marinade)
    1. Prepare Teriyaki Sauce: Combine soy sauce, sugar, ginger, garlic and jam in bowl. Cut chicken into 1 inch pieces and add to sauce. Refrigerate for 1 to 4 hours. (I go for 8 hours).
    2. To form kabobs, alternate pieces of chicken and green onion on 8-inch metal skewers. Baste with sauce.
    3. 3 Broil in preheated broiler 6 inches from heat for 10 minutes or until chicken is cooked through, turning skewers 3 to 4 times. Although using the oven is the original directions, they can also be cooked on the grill.
    I've also made this marinade for pork and it was GREAT! 

    I truly love to share foods, recipes, and culinary experiences together. I hope that you enjoy trying these out as they're all so easy to make! I would enjoy hearing feedback as you try the recipes on your own!