Drink & Dish: Restaurant-style Watermelon Margaritas

Restaurant-style Watermelon Margaritas I always try to spell watermelon with two Ls. Doesn’t the word mellon have two Ls? Shouldn’t watermel(l)on?? Maybe I just want to find an excuse for my terrible spelling. It’s true. You don’t even need to know how to spell these days. A red squiggly line will do it all for you, and my brain has gotten lazy. I can literally feel myself becoming less intelligent.

Restaurant-style Watermelon Margaritas

I’ve actually learned a lot about how many words I used to spell incorrectly since I started this blog. I always thought avocado was spelled avacado. That’s how it sounds in my head. I also get really confused because every time I type the word fudgy I still get a red squiggly line. So then I try fudgey which is also wrong and looks worse, so I’ll take it my computer has never eaten a delicious brownie, because if it had, it would totally know fudgy is a word.

Restaurant-style Watermelon Margaritas

Good lord, I need a margarita. Specifically the best, thickest, most flavorful margarita I have ever tasted. And trust me, I would never joke, or exaggerate about my margaritas. They are serious business, and these are the best of the best. The secret? Soaking the watermelon in the alcohol and freezing overnight. I had to get out that little push down stick for my vitamix to get everything to blend together. Restaurant-style Watermelon Margaritas

It’s easy for a frozen margarita to taste watered down and flavorless. In fact, I usually don’t order them frozen for this very reason. This margarita contains NO ICE. Simply watermelon, tequila, orange liquor, lime and agave. No overly sweet sour mix, no extra water–just real, bold ingredients. The watermelon flavor is out-of-this-world-good. It tastes fresh, natural, and like biting in to a cold, juicy watermelon. I simply cannot get these babies out of my head!

Restaurant-style Watermelon Margaritas

For our Labor Day episode of Drink & Dish, Nicole and I pulled a Freaky Friday and switched places–I made the drink, and she made the dish: a loaded potato chip dip that is to die for! Crunchy potato chips in a cheesy, creamy dip with all sorts of flavors and textures working together–it is a must try! Check out this latest episode for all the details!

Drink & Dish: Restaurant-style Watermelon Margarita

Prep Time: 12 hours, 5 minutes

Total Time: 12 hours, 5 minutes

Yield: 2 extra-large or 3 medium margaritas

Drink & Dish: Restaurant-style Watermelon Margarita

Ingredients

    For freezing:
  • 1/2 medium watermelon, chopped into 1" cubes
  • 1/2 cup tequila
  • 1/4 cup orange liqueur (triple sec, grand marnier, etc.)
  • For blending:
  • 2 shots tequila
  • 1 shot orange liqueur
  • juice of 1 lime
  • 1 tsp agave
  • For serving:
  • coarse salt
  • extra lime wedges

Instructions

  1. Place chopped watermelon in a large, freezer-safe container. Poor tequila and orange liqueur evenly over chopped watermelon. Cover and freeze for 12 hours or overnight.
  2. Transfer frozen watermelon and any liquid remains from your alcohol to a high-quality blender. Add remaining ingredients and blend until smooth. If mixture is still too thick, slowly add a little more alcohol until you've reached your desired consistency.
  3. Run a lime wedge around the rim of each glass. Place salt on a small, flat plat and press the top of each glass into the salt. Fill each glass with frozen margaritas and serve immediately.

Notes

You may freeze your watermelon up to 3 days if you wish to prepare ahead of time.

If all of the frozen watermelon does not fit into your blender, start with 1 shot of tequila and 1/2 short of orange liqueur and slowly add from there. All blenders and watermelons are different, so start slowly with the alcohol and add as you go.

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Lemon Rosemary Grilled Artichokes

Lemon Rosemary Grilled Artichokes #vegan #glutenfree

I took 5 pictures of artichokes and they all look the same. Forgive me?

Lemon Rosemary Grilled Artichokes #vegan #glutenfree

Actually, I took more like 20 pictures of artichokes which is surprisingly low for me. Usually I take close to 40 photos per shoot until I’m either 100% positive I got the shot I wanted, or I give in to frustration and call it quits, decide I hate photography and I am going to delete my blog. Sometimes I’m a little dramatic.

Lemon Rosemary Grilled Artichokes #vegan #glutenfree

And actually, they don’t all look exactly the same. I moved, like, an inch to the right which obviously makes it a completely different photo. Then I just really liked them all, and I couldn’t choose. Usually I show them all to Steve over and over and over until he tells me which one(s) to delete, but he was boycotting. So that’s what you get. Five pictures of artichokes that all look extremely similar.

Lemon Rosemary Grilled Artichokes #vegan #glutenfree

Grilled artichokes. Uuugghh…you guys. They are THE BEST. I could eat a whole grilled artichoke for dinner and be totally content. They are huge, filling, healthy, and they force you to eat slow and enjoy the experience. They are not an impatient food, which makes it a little strange that I enjoy them so much, because we all know I am an impatient person. They are a process. The cooking part is a piece of cake. Boil, remove the weird hairs (I know…I wish they made hairless artichokes, like pitted dates or hairless cats…), grill, voila! Then you get to take your time. One leaf at a time, until you get to where all the action is–the heart!

Lemon Rosemary Grilled Artichokes #vegan #glutenfree

Once your artichoke has been cooked, you scrape the inside of each leaf with your teeth, then discard the leaf into a side dish. Repeat with all of the leaves until you get to the heart, then pick that baby up and chow down! If you’ve never tried a whole artichoke, seriously, you must! And the lemon and rosemary?? To die for. A totally impressive meal that is more time consuming to eat than it is to cook!

Lemon Rosemary Grilled Artichokes

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 25 minutes

Total Time: 35 minutes

Yield: 4 servings

Serving Size: 1/2 artichoke

Lemon Rosemary Grilled Artichokes

Ingredients

  • 2 large lemons
  • 2 large artichokes
  • 1 sprig rosemary, finely chopped
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • salt and pepper

Instructions

  1. Cut off the stems of each artichoke leaving about 1" of stem remaining. Slice off the top quarter of each artichoke to create a flat top. Fill a very large pan or dutch oven with water and juice from one lemon. Add a pinch of salt if desired. Bring water to a boil, and add artichokes. Boil for about 15 minutes, until softened. Remove, and let stand for 5-10 minutes until they have slightly cooled.
  2. Slice each artichoke in half, and use a spoon to remove the choke (the part in the center just about the heart that looks like little hairs--they will scoop right out). Drizzle each half with 1/2 tbsp olive oil, then zest remaining lemon over the artichokes (I used about a tablespoon of zest). Season with rosemary, and a pinch each of salt and pepper.
  3. Grill artichokes over medium heat until browned and softened, about 5 minutes per side. Serve immediately.

Notes

Some people wish to trim the spiky leaves on the outside of the artichoke before cooking. You may do this, but I find it to be a waste of time. I find that they soften when cooked, and if they don't I simply discard them after cooking.

Often the first layer or two of the artichoke won't have any of the good stuff. You may with to discard the first several leaves. When you get to the good ones, the "meat" will scrape off easily.

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Lemon Crinkle Cookies

Lemon Crinkle Cookies

Hi friends! I can’t believe this week is almost over. It has been a whirlwind over here. I’ve been back in town for just a little over a week, and I’ve started a new job, adjusted to a new 4am alarm, and tried to start setting up a new routine. It has been great, and challenging, but mostly great! Also, yesterday I had the honored of being featured by one of my favorite bloggers. I answered several questions about my weight loss and running journey. Head over and check it out if you want to learn a little more about me. :)

Lemon Crinkle Cookies

Anyway, let’s talk about food! Cookies, specifically. Perfectly tart and sweet, melt-in-your-mouth-soft lemon crinkle cookies. Uggghhhh, you guys…I can’t even explain to you how good these cookies are. They rival those Paradise Bakery gems that I’ve been obsessed with for years. They make you want to convert to lemon desserts forever.

Lemon Crinkle Cookies

The combination of the lemon Greek yogurt + coconut oil = cookie texture perfection. Thick, soft and lightly chewy–you will never miss the butter!

Lemon Crinkle Cookies

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 10 minutes

Total Time: 50 minutes

Yield: 1 1/2 dozen

Serving Size: 1 cookie

Lemon Crinkle Cookies

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups white whole wheat flour
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • dash salt
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 3 tbsp coconut oil, melted
  • 5 tbsp nonfat lemon Greek yogurt
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup powdered sugar

Instructions

  1. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda and salt. Set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, beat together sugar and lemon zest until fragrant. Add coconut oil, yogurt, vanilla, egg and lemon juice. Beat until combined. Add flour mixture and beat until just combined. Cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
  3. Preheat oven to 350. Line baking sheet with silpat or parchment paper.
  4. Place powdered sugar in a large shallow bowl. Roll dough into approx 1" dough balls. Roll in powdered sugar to coat completely, then transfer to prepared baking sheet. Repeat with remaining dough.
  5. Bake for 10-12 minutes until edges gave just set. Allow to cool completely on baking sheet. Store in a loosely covered container for 5 days.

Notes

Plain yogurt may be substituted if lemon is unavailable.

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Creamy Greek Yogurt Slaw

Creamy Greek Yogurt Slaw

You know, for the longest time I never ate coleslaw. I always thought it was really gross. Cabbage and mayo?? I’m really not sure where the appeal comes from, but Steve and my mom are both huge fans (weirdos), so one night when I was grilling up some hot dogs, I decided to try to make some coleslaw that was actually appealing.

Creamy Greek Yogurt Slaw

I’m pretty much convinced that Greek yogurt is the cure for all things. I have never made a dish and then thought “Man, it would have been so much better if I had left off the Greek yogurt.” Perhaps I am weirdly obsessed, but it really is a magical food.

Creamy Greek Yogurt Slaw

So I made coleslaw, which I thought I hated. But then I loved it. Steve was a little confused by the texture. He said coleslaw is usually more runny. That sounds gross. Thick, creamy, delicious, and packed with protein and veggies–now it really is the perfect side for your summer grilling!

Creamy Greek Yogurt Slaw

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Total Time: 5 minutes

Yield: approx 10 servings

Serving Size: 1/2 cup

Creamy Greek Yogurt Slaw

Ingredients

  • 2/3 cup nonfat plain Greek yogurt
  • 1 tbsp honey
  • Juice from 1/2 medium lemon
  • 2 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • pinch each salt and pepper
  • 5 cups coleslaw veggie mix*

Instructions

  1. In a large bowl, whisk together yogurt, honey, lemon juice, vinegar, salt and pepper until combined. Stir in coleslaw mix. Serve immediately or keep refrigerated in an airtight container for 3-5 days.

Notes

*Feel free to use fresh cabbage and carrots (or whatever shaved veggies you'd like) to create your own mix. I bought a bag at the store because it was easy, but I'm sure it would be even better with fresh produce!

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Thai Chicken Kabobs

Thai Chicken Kabobs

Is there anything more fun than food on a stick? I mean, sure, eating it can be tricky and you run the risk of stabbing your husband while playing swords with your food (because that’s a totally normal and acceptable thing to do, yes?), but really, how many foods can you make into a sword anyway?

Thai Chicken Kabobs

I’ve actually never made kabobs before this one, and let me tell you, I am in love. I loved having my chicken on my veggies all on one stick. I loved how fun they were to eat and dip in the peanut sauce, and I also loved how food on a stick meant there were next to no dishes to clean up. Seriously, I hate cleaning almost as much as I love cooking.

Thai Chicken Kabobs

The chicken marinates in the peanut sauce to soak up all that delicious Thai peanut flavor, then gets grilled up with your veggies and dunked in lots more peanut-y deliciousness as you eat. You end up eating a lot less of the calorie-dense peanut sauce than if you were to eat traditional Pad Thai. Not to mention getting rid of the noodles and adding a bunch of veggies gives you all the flavors of classic Pad Thai with a fraction of the calories, and sticking it all on kabob skewers to grill up gives them an awesome summery touch!

Thai Chicken Kabobs

They are topped off with fresh cilantro (my favorite food–I don’t care if you say it’s an “herb”, it’s still my favorite) and drizzles with sriracha for an extra spicy kick. Of course, those are option if you’re one of those weirdos who doesn’t like spicy food, or worse, you have that genetic “mutation” where you don’t like cilantro. Have you heard about that? Apparently it’s a genetic thing where to some people it tastes like soap. So glad I pulled the long straw on that one. ;)

Thai Chicken Kabobs

Prep Time: 1 hour, 15 minutes

Cook Time: 5 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour, 20 minutes

Yield: 9 kabobs

Serving Size: 3 kabobs

Thai Chicken Kabobs

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup peanut butter
  • 1 1/2 tbsp fresh lime juice
  • 1 tbsp coconut aminos or soy sauce
  • 1 tsp sriracha + extra for drizzling
  • approx 1/2 cup water, divided
  • 1 1/2 lbs boneless skinless chicken breast, cut into 1" chunks
  • 1 large red bell pepper, cut into 1" chunks
  • approx 1 cup sugar snap peas
  • 1/2 red onion, cut into 1" chunks
  • fresh cilantro, optional

Instructions

  1. In a medium bowl, whisk together peanut butter, lime juice, coconut aminos, sriracha and 1/4 cup water. Remove half the mixture (eyeball it), cover and set aside.
  2. Add 1/4 cup water to remaining mixture. Whisk to combine. Continue to slowly add water until it has reached the consistency of a marinade. I used about 1/4-1/3 cup. Place chicken and marinade in a large freezer bag or medium tupperware and marinate in the refrigerator for 1 hour (alternately, feel free to do this step up to 24 hours ahead of time).
  3. If using wooden skewers, soak skewers for 30 minutes before cooking (if you use metal, this is not necessary). Alternately place chicken, bell pepper, onion, and snap peas onto your skewers (you will most likely have room for about 2 of each) close together, but not crowding.
  4. Grill on medium-high heat until chicken is cooked throughout, about 5-7 minutes. Sprinkle with fresh cilantro and drizzle with srirach. Serve immediately with remaining peanut dipping sauce.

Notes

You may wish to heat the peanut sauce before serving. It can get quite thick while it sits, so microwaving for about 15 seconds and adding a tablespoon of water should get it back to your ideal consistency.

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