our full life: march, april, may

Hello again!

I’ve missed this. It’s been a while since I have posted and I am looking forward to writing and sharing some things here! Finding time to keep up with blogging is difficult, but I recently had a surgery that has forced me to rest. So, silver lining, folks!

In March we enjoyed lots of celebrations:

March Collage

  • A beach birthday party for one of our favorite 12 year olds
  • Started two very different, but very good novels: Landline and The Nightingale
  • Went to dinner and a Jose Gonzales concert with one of our favorite couples ever
  • Celebrated 5 years of marriage with my sweet, handsome, enthusiastic, funny, strong, kind husband
  • Spent a weekend away in Las Vegas on the lake, enjoyed a Gordon Ramsey burger, and the best breakfast I’ve ever had at Bouchon Bakery
  • Bret treated me to some shopping and I ravaged the Anthropologie sale rack
  • Date day at VGs, Zumbar, SD Zoo, and El Indio
  • Celebrated EASTER SUNDAY at the Flower Fields in Carlsbad
  • Celebrated my husband turning 30 years old! Whoa…good thing he has the best baby face I’ve ever seen.

In April we enjoyed:

April Collage

  • Co-Birthday 30th Birthday Party for Bret and Steve
  • Beach walks and runs
  • 2 Fountain Valley girlfriend dates
  • Fun celebration work dinner
  • Guy and Girl hang outs with our Jr. High kids
  • Candle making class at Mr. B’s Necessities shop
  • A beach birthday party for one of our favorite sweet 16 year olds
  • Broke my pinky toe playing beach soccer
  • Spanish themed Cooking Club – I made olive tapenade toast and mushrooms sautéed in garlic and white wine
  • Spike ball Sunday
  • My mom came to visit from Idaho! We had a beach day, watercolor night, Community Group, and dinner together at Benihana (her first time hehe).

In May we enjoyed:

May Collage

  • Bret traveled with one of our Pastors to Reno for an Acts 29 Conference
  • Primos tacos and gelato with our Community Group
  • Date Night at Target and The Flying Pig
  • Mother’s Day dinner at my oldest and best girlfriend’s house
  • Book Club meeting for The Nightingale with the best french food spread ever
  • Said goodbye to the palm tree outside our front door…I loved that thing
  • 8th Grade Graduation party with our Jr. High kids – SO fun!
  • Lofty Coffee with Jocey
  • In home massages (late Christmas present for Bret)
  • Memorial Day appreciation and BBQ with friends

Something else that happened in March and is just now beginning to wrap up is an unexpected health update. My GP looked at my neck back in March and she thought my thyroid gland looked enlarged. She ordered an ultrasound which revealed that my thyroid was normal size but they could see there was a mass growing on the right side. I was then sent to a specialist. He did a biopsy and recommended I get it removed due to its large size. The biopsy came back a few weeks later as negative – PRAISE THE LORD! But I still had to consider surgery. I felt the most peace with moving forward with surgery and I am sure glad God directed me that way. Just this last week, they removed the mass and the Doctors laughed to each other when my husband asked how big it was. They said, “That thing was impressive!” So the mass is gone, it’s not cancerous, and I still have most of my thyroid intact. Recovery isn’t fun, but I am so grateful for God putting good doctors around me and for helping me to get healthy. I’m also so grateful for all the people who have prayed for me – God heard all of those prayers. And for those who have brought me flowers and food and cards and blessed me with your company. THANK YOU SO MUCH. My body is in pain but my heart is full.

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Until next month…I hope you enjoyed hearing about “our full life” over the last few months.

xo sarah

i love lists: 10 cookies i want in my belly

If you saw my post last weekend, then you are hopefully still using the list of remedies I gave you for the indian summer we’re still having in San Diego. This heat is brutal. Which is why I’m sitting in front of my fan with a cold drink and about to make sandwiches for dinner.

While I’m not suggesting that you turn on your oven, I am suggesting you day dream about the following 10 cookie recipes. Long for them, fantasize about the magnificent flavors, then in a couple weeks…bake them all! You know people will eat them. People love sugar…so just go crazy and bake. I chose to make a list of cookies because they are one of my favorite desserts and are usually pretty simple. These recipes can be trusted…no pinterest fail here!

cookie Collage 1

  1. Smitten Kitchen Black & White Cookies
  2. Barefoot Contessa Salty Oatmeal Chocolate Chunk Cookies
  3. Barefoot Contessa Pecan Shortbread
  4. Pioneer Woman Citrus Butter Cookies
  5. Momofuku Milk Bar Marshmallow Cornflake Cookies
  6. Sarah Theis Chocolate Chip Cookies
  7. Joy the Baker Vanilla Bean Confetti Cookies
  8. White on Rice Couple Brown Sugar Butterscotch Slice & Bake Cookies
  9. Food 52 Salted Chocolate Espresso Brookies
  10. Martha Stewart Snickerdoodle Cookies

cookie Collage 2

#31daysofwriting #write31days

xo sarah 

our full life: week forty & forty one

Hello there! Welcome to the last 2 weeks of our life:

surfer sessionSunset walks with Susie Q. and some surfer dudes.

vital picBouldering with some awesome Jr. High peeps.

protonLast proton therapy (we PRAY!) for this beauty. Please keep praying for Katherine.

loss notesIt is hard to put into words how much the Loss Conference blessed my heart. I will be writing about the things I learned and some relationships I love in weeks to come.

loss lunchMy food theme last weekend was carbs. And boy oh boy, it was delicious!

sunshineYou are my sunshine, my only sunshine.

ctc 10 Coffee & Tea Collective for iced cold brew.

morning timesI love arugula on eggs and iced tea in jars. I also really love my new book : Prone to Wander.

nektar date Nektar date. Love these huge prints.

hs ceilingWork from above.

erosion I love living here.

music prepMusic prep for The Fields. One of my favorite parts of the week.

cooking club 10Cooking Club going strong with this dish. Butternut squash soup topped with walnuts, blue cheese, and granny smith apples.

paradise Bird of paradise for my pleasure while I lounge and read.

rest dayThe perfect Sunday afternoon.

Enjoy & rejoice the week the Lord has made!

xo sarah

our full life: week five

Here’s was what our past full week looked like:

roasted pumpkinRoasted pumpkin with EVOO, S&P, and paprika. I also roasted the seeds on another baking sheet with the same oil and spices. Both are amazing in salads.

brinnerBad lighting…but when Bret is gone for dinner I always make eggs. Breakfast for dinner is not really his thing.

lulubugThe answer is yes. She is the most adorable girl you’ve ever seen.

lovely ladiesSweet love between mother and daughter. I am so glad I captured this.

hawaiihomeBret’s parents rearranged their Hawaiian art work and I really love it!

snack timeFriday snack of pretzels, Nutella, and honey iced chai.

staff stoneStaff get-together at Stone Brewery. I loved my beer…whatever it was called. It was a much appreciated blessing for us.

fruit juicing Prepping lime and pineapple juice for a possible recipe for you all!

turkey 1Post coming at you this week: Thanksgiving in February! Here is Bret carving our turkey (with the help of Pioneer Woman) and drinking a pumpkin ale. He is so good.

I hope this week is a blessing and one that points you back to your beloved Creator.

xo sarah

simple croque monsieur

Croque Monsieur is a very fancy name. The French always make things sound super duper fancy. Although, I wont lie…I do like them for that reason. The simple truth is this: these delectable ham and cheese sandwiches that I speak of are just that…ham and cheese sandwiches.

croques2

Simple ham and cheese sandwiches sold as fast-food or quick-snacks in french cafes. Yes, there is a bechamel…and yes, there is some gruyere in there. Those facts should never scare us away, but lure us in! The best part of all is in the name itself. Croque Monsieur is literally translated as the “Mister Crunch” sandwich. I like that much better. How I would love to go to france and ask for a mister crunch, to-go!

Recipe adapted from Martha Stewart:

  • Serves 6-8

CroquesCollage

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/4 cup of whole milk
  • 2 Tbsp. of unsalted butter
  • 3 Tbsp. of all-purpose flour
  • 3 Tbsp. of fresh thyme leaves, divided
  • Kosher salt & freshly ground pepper
  • 1 long ciabatta loaf (about 1 1/2 pounds)
  • 4 Tbsp. of Dijon mustard
  • 3/4 pound of sliced ham
  • 4 cups of Gruyere cheese (about 8 ounces), grated
  • 1 cup of Parmesan cheese (1 ounce), finely grated

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees with rack in bottom third. Heat the milk in a pan over medium heat until hot, about 5 minutes. Melt the butter in another small saucepan over medium heat; add the flour, whisk to combine, and cook 2 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add 1 1/2 tablespoons thyme, then gradually whisk in milk. Simmer the bechamel 2 minutes, whisking. Remove from heat, and add 1 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper.
  2. Cut the top crust off bread; slice loaf in half horizontally. Fill sandwich with mustard, ham, and half the Gruyere. Toast on a baking sheet until the cheese is melted and the top is golden brown.
  3. Remove from the oven. Preheat broiler. Spread the bechamel on top, and sprinkle with remaining the cheese. Broil until golden brown and bubbling, about 6 to 7 minutes. Remove from the oven; garnish with pepper and the remaining thyme. Let sit 10 minutes before cutting. Enjoy!

Have you ever made a Croque before? Have you ever HAD a Croque from France? Either way, please make these and enjoy all the cheesy goodness!

xo sarah

this abundant list

So…it is here. The big two-five. I’m officially a grown up. Sometimes, my freckles make me look like I’m 17, but not anymore! I’m 25, world. Watch out for all the excitement!

TAL 25

Here is a short list of things I can think of tonight that I would like to see/do/make/eat/read/be this year.

  1. First, take as many pictures as possible. I want to document all our sweet moments like the one above. Squinty eyes and all.
  2. Disney World. I can’t believe it’s happening, but it is.
  3. I want to read Wuthering Heights again. And see the most recently made movie.
  4. I want to walk at least 150 miles this year. Its a small feat…but it’s doable for where my life is at right now.
  5. I think I might dye my hair. Eeek! A vibrant red, perhaps.
  6. S’mores cupcakes and a bloody mary. I will make you in my kitchen.
  7. I would love to diversify my income. A little bit here and a little bit there. Hopefully from the things, and in the areas, that I am most passionate about.
  8. I want to laugh ALOT. I can always count on episodes of New Girl and Parks and Rec to make that happen. And my husband. He is a riot.
  9. Puppy!?! Maybe. Maybe not. Until then, I can just watch CUTE videos.
  10. Chips: kale, sweet potato, beets, bacon, apple. This is happening, year 25.
  11. I would love to see this blog reach many more people for the glory of God. Maybe an e-course is in my future.

That’s the short list. I could probably keep going. I will spare you…and myself.

Until next week, friends, let’s get messy and bold in the kitchen. Let’s have lot’s of coffee dates and movie nights. Let’s make every day count. Let’s pursue every lovely passion. Above all, let’s make much of God in every moment.

xo sarah

cheesy baked penne

Last night we had Bret’s grandparents over for dinner. What a night! It’s so fun to have them over. Here are a few fun facts about Bret’s grandparents:First, we call them Granny and Grampy (so cute, huh?!). Second, they love Jesus and each other dearly. Third, without fail, if you specifically tell Granny not bring anything…she still will. It’s just in her nature and it is incredibly generous of her. I have to fill you in on what came out of the 4 or 5 paper bags she brought over. Granny arrived with an ENTIRE ham, a giant loaf of ciabatta, a whole lemon tart, an almond pastry twist, and a large jar filled with gummy cokes for Bret. And, well, there is more…but I’ll stop there. Oh our sweet Granny, we love you so much!!! You spoiled us rotten and we can’t say thank you enough.

The last fun fact about Bret’s grandparents is their refined culinary pallet. They love meat, potatoes and lots of SUGAR. That being said, Granny always makes some pretty delicious feasts. It took me a couple of days to mull over what I could make them. I love raw kale salads for goodness sake. But, ultimately, I landed on a traditional pasta dish. Who doesn’t love Italian?! WHO doesn’t love cheese?! I essentially made this up off the top of my head, and it ended up being SO yummy! I hope you make it for your family and enjoy it as much as we did.
CBP
Ingredients:
  • 1 large rectangular glass baking dish
  • 1 16 oz. package of penne pasta
  • 1 – 1.5 pounds of lean ground beef
  • 1 jar of tomato basil sauce
  • 12 oz. of shredded cheese (I used a Parmesan/asiago mix)
  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil
  • 1 yellow onion
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 1 teaspoon basil
  • 1 teaspoon marjoram
  • Pinch of salt and pepper
Directions:
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Boil water in a medium saucepan. Add penne and cook for 7-8 minutes or until just Al-dente. Strain completely and then transfer the penne to the glass baking dish.
  2. Heat olive oil in a large frying pan over medium heat. Chop the onion. Sauté until the onion becomes translucent and soft.
  3. Press garlic cloves and add to the onions. Sauté for one more minute.
  4. Add the beef. Break it up and then add the basil, marjoram, salt and pepper.
  5. Once the meat is completely cooked through, add the jar if tomato sauce to the pan. Stir well and let it simmer for couple minutes.
  6. Pour the meat sauce over your penne into the glass baking dish. Stir it in well so that the sauce is evenly distributed.
  7. Stir half the cheese into the noodles so it is evenly distributed.
  8. Sprinkle the other half of the cheese over the top.
  9. Place the baking dish in the oven. Bake for 30-40 minutes until the top is browned and bubbly.
  10. Serve immediately. Enjoy!

I paired this dish with KILLER garlic bread by Shutterbean, a garden salad, and mini apple crumbles for dessert (topped with whipped cream, of course). It was such a joy having Bret’s grandparents over for dinner. I enjoyed cooking for them and spending quality time together laughing, sharing, and playing domino’s. We are excited to do it again soon!

Let me know if have any questions about the dish. What are some fun facts about YOUR grandparents?

xo sarah

sweet kale salad

Tonight was a soup and salad kind of night. It’s cold and dark outside, but that doesn’t mean it won’t be warm and bright in our little apartment!

Fact: I really love making soup. Maybe it’s because my husband loves eating soup? Tonight seemed like a great night to try out a new recipe, and it was a huge success (if I do say so myself). It was posted in my this abundant list post from last week, but here it again: White Bean, Escarole and Chicken Sausage Soup. I doubled the recipe so that Bret and I could have it for lunch the rest of the week. Also, I only had one can of cannellini beans, so I added a can of garbanzo beans and it still turned out great! This recipe is definitely worth filing away in my recipe box for another cold day.

BUT, what really made the meal was my Sweet Kale Salad. It was sweet, tangy, crisp and super clean. And even though salad is a cold dish, this one makes your tastebuds happy and warms the heart. Here’s my recipe:

salad 1

Ingredients:

  • 3-4 cups of fresh kale (packed tight)
  • 1 small green apple, cored and chopped
  • 1 medium size carrot, peeled in thin strips
  • 10 basil leaves, pulled of stem and cut chiffonade
  • 1/3 cup dried cranberries

Directions:

  1. In a large bowl, toss all ingredients together.
  2. Drizzle with your favorite tangy or sweet vinaigrette. Homemade dressing is usually the route I take, but for this salad I used one of my favorite store-bought brands – BRIANNNA’S Real French Vinaigrette. YUM.
  3. Enjoy!

Please let me know if you have any questions and, if you try it, let me know how it goes! What is your favorite meal to have on a cold winter’s night?

xo sarah

this abundant list

In the coming year, I will be writing “this abundant list” according to yours truly every week! These lists will include my favorite things, stuff that makes me smile, cry, shout for joy and links to things that make life beautiful, stylish, and fun. So here we go!

this abundant list dec 1

If you didn’t know already, I LOVE food.

I never knew it would happen to me, but I think I am becoming a foodie.

Travel is no longer about the things to see (although, I do love that too), but about the local bakery, farmers market, or hole-in-the-wall diner. Monday night dinners are no longer about just a can of soup for convenience (although it does happen every once in a while), but about the roasts and stews and trying out new cooking techniques.

Here’s a list of food/tips that I will be trying out this winter season. Enjoy!

  1. Baby, it’s cold outside. I will be trying out these delicious soups: Roast Lemon Chicken and Rice Soup (I will substitute potatoes for the rice), White Bean, Escarole and Chicken Sausage Soup, Mexican Corn and Poblano Soup. Maybe a cauliflower garlic and split pea too!
  2. Looking for a zesty soup and salad garnish? Try crisping your lemon zest!
  3. Making stock! Save all your scraps from cooking and store in individually labeled bags for the freezer. Chicken, vegetable, beef, or fish stock!
  4. Latkes, anyone?! I’m excited to try these 8 different ways to make them! And Elana’s version are UHH-MAZING.
  5. Tequila is my favorite. And when I saw a recipe for Tequila Punch, I was sold.
  6. We love eating Paleo, so I’m excited to try this real simple Seared Steak with Cauliflower Puree.
  7. So bad…but, SO good. I know Bret will love if I make this Cheese Crisps.
  8. I’m inspired to have a fancy dinner party. I think this extensive checklist could seriously help me. Maybe this complete menu too!
  9. TEA! I am obsessed with this tea and its glittering effect! DIY?!Screen Shot 2012-12-26 at 9.12.59 PM
  10. Homemade Yogurt & Chamomile-Yogurt Panna Cotta! Yes, please.
  11. Always be dessert-ready with an antique glass jar of cookies in the fridge.
  12. Evernote Food is a new app I’ll definitely be trying out on my new iPad Mini. Looks awesome.

That’s all for now. I’ll be busy in the kitchen!

xo sarah

julia child turns 100!

“This is my invariable advice to people: Learn how to cook- try new recipes, learn from your mistakes, be fearless, and above all have fun!” ― Julia ChildMy Life in France

If you know me pretty well, you know that I have a lot of respect for Mrs. Julia Child. Bret knows, and he bought me her first cookbook, Mastering the Art of French Cooking, for my college graduation. It was the perfect gift!

Julia Child was honest, inspiring, and such an incredible chef. I have read bits and pieces about her life and found that she was one dedicated and lovely woman. It popped out to me that this year, on August 15, 2012, Julia Child (if she were still with us) would have been her 100th birthday! I also read that the last meal she prepared herself before she passed at the age of 93 was her famous French Onion Soup. So I got an idea….

I love writing about food, cooking, and getting creative – so I thought, “I know: this year on August 15th, Julia’s real birthday, I’ll celebrate her life through food and have a “Julia Night”: a dinner party with a couple friends, make Julia’s French Onion Soup, and watch Julie & Julia snuggled up on the couch (and then blog about it, of course)! Fun!” However, my plan didn’t go as I had thought. Unfortunately, I got really sick the week of Julia Night and I had to cancel on my friends and cancel on Julia. It was a huge bummer, but I was determined to still make it happen! So, a couple of weeks ago, the husband and I had Julia Night, just us two, and it was amazing! Even though I couldn’t honor Julia on her actual birthday, I know she would understand. I see the kind of attitude she had from the following quote: “The only real stumbling block is fear of failure. In cooking you’ve got to have a what-the-hell attitude.” ― Julia Child

So, what-the-hell, I was a month late, but Julia Night happened anyway! I cooked her famous French Onion Soup, I broiled swiss and parmesan on french bread, I made Caramel Custards, and we drank white wine. It was a celebration indeed! Here are some pictures of the ingredients, the cooking, and the movie watching:

What a wonderful night! Thank you, Julia. Happy 100th Birthday! And thank you for this truly inspiring quote: “Find something you’re passionate about and keep tremendously interested in it.” ― Julia Child

What Julia Child recipes have you tried, or wanted to try? I would love to hear!

xo sarah

a few of my favorite things

Here are a few of my favorite things (in no specific order). Hope they make you smile and inspire you to enjoy this abundant life you have been given!

cardigans, my kitchenaid, fresh herbs, sleeping in, good books, church, fresh flowers,   real butter, tea, doughnuts, praying, chocolate, beach days, husband, pinterest, singing, Jesus, The Bible, magazines, being silly, veggies, board games, chapstick, peonies, candles, friends, diamonds, citrus, kissing, vanilla coke, hawaii, tv, rain & thunder, sushi, Instagram, cleaning, chick flicks, long walks, babies, popsicles, black skinny jeans, freckles, list making, crafting, margaritas, blogging, Trader Joes, coffee, honey…

What are your favorite things? I would really love to hear them! 🙂

xo sarah

roasted miniature eggplant

I was at Sprout’s Farmers Market the other week and there were miniature eggplant on sale: 15 for $1.00! Holy cow!

You can’t get 15 of anything for $1.00 these days, so I snatched some up!
However, once I got home I realized I had no idea what to do with them. And, like usual, I visited one of my favorite sites for inspiration: Pinterest!
It’s so fun to take the beautiful and delicious ideas on Pinterest and make it for real!
I found a recipe for Oven Roasted Mini Eggplant that was simple, but looked pretty tasty.

This miniature eggplant dish would be great as a vegetable side dish to dinner, an appetizer served with a dipping sauce and paired with cheese, or on a slice of fresh baked artisan bread with EVOO. I adopted what I loved from the original recipe and modified the rest to my liking. Here it is:

Ingredients:

  • 15 miniature eggplant
  • 2 Tbsp of EVOO or oil of choice
  • 1-2 tsp of kosher salt
  • 1-2 tsp cracked black pepper
  • 1 tsp garlic powder

Directions:

1. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees F.

2. Rinse each miniature eggplant in a strainer and pat dry. Then poke all sides of each eggplant with a fork.

3. Place eggplants on a rimmed baking sheet. Drizzle with oil, then sprinkle with salt, pepper, and garlic powder. Toss together to coat each eggplant evenly.

4. Put in your oven for 30-40 minutes for roasting.

5. Serve hot, room-temperature, or cold! I prefer hot.

*Note: The color on the miniature Eggplants changes to a reddish brown after they have been roasted. This means they will not be as visually appealing, but still just as tasty. These would be great dipped in balsamic vinegar, olive oil, and oregano!

What deal or special ingredient have you taken a chance on lately? I’d love to hear it!

xo sarah

our first camping trip {part 3: camp meal-planning made simple}

Cooking away from home can be tricky.
Cooking healthy away from home can be almost impossible!
However, I was very determined to make it happen, so I am writing today to share some of the things that worked for me when planning out the menu for our big trip!
Below, you will find a full menu with options for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and (of course) dessert! These meals are simple, healthy, and delicious! What more could you ask for while camping?

I did my shopping at 3 different stores for these meals:

  • Sprouts for all produce
  • Trader Joes for meat, eggs, bread and fun snacks
  • Vons for the “just add water & shake” pancake mix and s’mores supplies.

Most of these meals are very self-explanatory and you can add your personal twist however you would like! But make sure to look for a couple helpful recipes down below too. Enjoy!

Breakfast

Day 1: Pancakes, Berries, Canadian Bacon

Day 2: Scrambled Eggs with Homemade Bacon Bits, Skillet Garlic Potatoes, Oranges

Day 3: Pancakes, Chicken Apple Sausage, Berries

Day 4: Oatmeal w/Walnuts and Cranberries, Oranges

* Each breakfast paired with a hot cup of french press coffee of course!

Breakfast made easy and delicious!

Lunch

Day 1: Trader Joes Pre-Packaged Salad or Sandwich

Day 2: Canadian Bacon Sandies, Baby Carrots

Day 3: Leftovers of anything you need to get rid of

Day 4: Lunch out!

Dinner

Day 1: Garlic Sausage & Veggie Foil Dinner

Day 2: Vegetable Soup (Made ahead of time), Rolls

Day 3: Pasta with Sautéed Mushrooms, Green Beans

Day 4: Hot Dogs, Potato Salad, Corn on the Cob

Dessert

Day 1: S’mores

Day 2: Watermelon

Day 3: Banana Boats

Day 4: Watermelon or other fun snacks

RECIPE:  Garlic Sausage & Veggie Foil Dinner

Note: Before you leave for your trip you should par-boil your potatoes until a fork can just barley poke through the surface. This will help the cooking process along while your out camping!

Ingredients:

  • 2-4 squares of 1-foot foil
  • 4 garlic chicken sausage
  • 1 red bell pepper
  • 1 yellow bell pepper
  • 1/2 red onion
  • 4 baby potatoes – I used purple potatoes!
  • (remember: parboil at home before you leave!)
  • 4 Tbsp cold butter
  • 4 cloves of garlic
  • dash of red pepper flakes
  • season with salt & pepper

Directions:

1. Make sure fire is hot and ready to cook with.

2. Chop all veggies and potatoes into bite-size chunks.

3. Slice sausage in 1/4 inch thick slices.

4. Mince or mash garlic cloves.

5. Cut butter into little cubes.

6. Lay foil squares flat on a table and place even amounts of sausage, veggies, and potatoes into each piece of foil.

7. Scatter butter, garlic, red pepper flakes, and S&P even throughout each foil square.

8. Bring opposite corners of foil square together and seal together tightly. Make sure nothing will leak or fall out and that the seal is secure.

9. Roast on campfire grill for 15 minutes. Turn every 5 minutes.

10. Enjoy a healthy and hearty campfire meal! And treat yourself a glass of bordeaux if you can!

RECIPE:  Skillet Garlic Potatoes 

Note: Before you leave for your trip you should oven-bake your potatoes. Wash each potato, rub with kosher salt, wrap in foil and bake at 375 degrees for 30 minutes. This will help the cooking process along while you’re out camping!

Ingredients:

  • Cast iron skillet
  • 3-5 russet potatoes (remember: oven-baked ahead of time!)
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 2 Tbsp butter
  • Season with salt and pepper

Directions:

1. Make sure fire is hot and ready to cook with.

2. Mince garlic cloves.

3. Slice potatoes into 1/4 inch think slices.

4. Melt butter in cast iron skillet. Add garlic shortly after.

5. Add potatoes to skillet.  Season with S&P. Turn every couple minutes.

6. Your potatoes will be done in 5-10 minutes. They will turn golden brown and the garlic will get crispy!

7. ENJOY!

RECIPE:  Vegetable Soup

Note: This soup is made entirely ahead of time at home. Bring the serving sizes you need in an airtight container to place in the cooler. The soup can be warmed in a pot over the fire and served with rolls.

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup of dried beans (I used black eyed peas)
  • 1 cup of red or gold potatoes, cubed
  • 2 medium leeks, rinsed well and chopped
  • 3 medium carrots, diced
  • 3-4 red plum tomatoes, cubed
  • 1 zucchini, cubed
  • 1 1/2 cups green beans, cut into 1 inch pieces
  • 1 cup fresh or frozen peas
  • 4 cups of vegetable or chicken broth
  • 1 tsp thyme
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 tsp granulated garlic
  • season with salt and pepper

Directions:

1. In a large pot, cover your beans with 6 cups of water. Cover and bring to a rolling boil.

2. Drain and rinse the beans. Return the beans to the pot and cover with 12 cups of water.

3. Add the thyme and bay leaf and bring to a rolling boil. Reduce heat to simmer.

4. Add potatoes, leeks, carrots, tomatoes, and broth. Simmer uncovered for 30 minutes.

5. Add the green beans and zucchini, and cook uncovered for 20 min.

6. Add the peas and cook uncovered for 5 minutes, or until soft.

7. Stir in granulated garlic and season with S&P.

8. ENJOY!

RECIPE:  Banana Boats

Ingredients:

  • 1 banana per person
  • 1 foil square per person, measured
  • chocolate chips/square from a hershey bar
  • marshmallows

Directions:

1. Make sure fire is hot and ready to cook with.

2. Carefully cut open each banana without cutting through to the other side.

3. Stuff with chocolate and marshmallows to your liking!

4. Wrap each banana up in the foil so there is a tight seal.

5. Cook over the fire for 5 minutes. Eat with a spoon and enjoy!!

Thanks for reading, friends! I hope you enjoyed this 3 part series of our first camping trip! Please don’t hesitate to ask me about any of these menus or recipes!

xo sarah