Blood orange margaritas served on-the-rocks with salt for those who want to celebrate Valentine’s Day and party.Continue reading “Blood Orange Margaritas”
(Updated 8.27.19) slow cooked carnitas are made with tender pork loin that is simmered in flavorful spices all day for an excellent, quick dinner.
If you’ve been following me on Instagram, you probably saw that I posted a picture of pie dough promising a BIG EXCITING RECIPE COMING VERY VERY SOON AND IT’S GOING TO BE THE BEST THING EVER. It’s true, and pie dough will be here soon, but tonight I made super easy and amazing slow cooked carnitas. So I thought I’d just share them real quick!
Now, if you’re still confused about the “easy” part of the slow cooked carnitas description, (because honestly when have they ever been easy?) let me explain. First, you’ll sear the pork. Then, you’ll place the pork in the slow cooker with some other fun stuff. After that, you’ll leave the pork alone while you work and go to school and exercise and unload your dishwasher. Then you’ll shred the pork and broil it until it’s crispy. Next? You’re free to put the slow-cooked, shredded, crispy pork with burny bits in anything you please!
I like to put slow cooked carnitas in tacos, enchiladas, and on tostadas!
My favorite way to eat slow cooked carnitas is the taco method. AKA blistered corn tortillas with plenty of cilantro and queso fresco. However, the burrito bowl option with brown rice, pinto beans, queso, lettuce, avocado, tomato, and salsa is a good option as well. Tonight I went with the burrito bowl option. Mostly because I ran out of tortillas and always have a surplus of brown rice on hand tbh. But in the future I may use the pork in tostadas or enchiladas. (Update: I have, and it’s delicious!). Also, you only need a few kitchen basics to make carnitas. Soooo, wins all around!
slow cooked carnitas are one of my favorite weeknight meals.
I’m a huge fan of meals that are 1. easy 2. healthy and 3. cook all day while I’m at work. That’s mainly why you see so much Mexican food on SSL. But I promise, I don’t only eat Mexican food and not all my meals are made in a slow cooker. I’m sure at one point I’ll get over my homemade Mexican food obsession. But for now it’s just too good, and there’s just too many options! The carnitas are a particular favorite, because they’re slightly sweet from the orange zest. Omg, it’s my favorite part! I know it’s not traditional, but I just love it.
On another note, I have had a huge thing for curry lately, even more so than usual, so we’ll see where that goes. I imagine Thai and Indian will infiltrate SSL in the next coming months even with summer right around the corner.
But for now, cheers to slow cooked carnitas.
Slow Cooked Carnitas
Notes: The searing on this recipe is not totally necessary, since you broil the pork before serving to crisp it up. However, some people prefer the seared pork, so I left it in the directions. You can probably choose *either* searing or broiling. Totally up to you!
*Song of the Day: I Wanna Get Better by Bleachers
It’s happened, guys. I finished my first summer class, and now my brain = alskbxlzkjcgqergldknblddzweksdjclxdssalskdj.
As in, I cannot find the motivation to do anything more than lay in bed watching Gossip Girl and drinking insane amounts of green tea. For the whole entire week. (Also, don’t judge the GG. It’s officially my guilty pleasure).
It is also this resignation of my cranium that has put me in a dark, uncharacteristic succession of intense procrastination that I cannot seem to shake off no matter how acute my anxiety becomes.
Side effects of my procrastination have resulted in me putting off shopping and packing for London until yesterday afternoon (I leave tomorrow) as well as clicking multiple “Read More” links on posts concerning Zodiac signs and guitar tuning (I don’t play guitar). (Yet).
Luckily, I was able to force myself into packing and getting my shit together yesterday/today, and I’m (almost) ready to leave for London tomorrow! Yay!
My new goal is to motivate myself for the two more summer classes I start in London on Monday.
As it turns out, I need to get as much Mexican food into my body as I can in the next day, because Europe has no authentic Mexican food.
There are many European people that have never even had real Mexican (or Tex-Mex for that matter).
It’s the sad truth, and I’m not quite sure what to do with my life except console myself with Indian food and conversations with cute British boys.
(Life is so hard, right?)
1 lb. chicken breasts, cut into thin strips
2 bell peppers, cut into thin strips
1 onion, thinly sliced
1/2 c. olive oil
1 Tbs. balsamic vinegar
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2-1 tsp. onion powder (to taste)
1 tsp. cumin
1 tsp. chili powder
1/2 tsp. paprika
1/4 tsp. oregano
Tabasco, to taste
1 lime, juiced
1/4 c. cilantro, chopped
Salt and pepper, to taste
Place chicken strips, peppers, and onions in a zipper plastic bag or plastic bowl with a lid. Set aside.
In a separate bowl, whisk together remaining ingredients.
Pour marinade over chicken, peppers, and onions. Marinate for at least 2 hours, or up to 24.
When ready to cook, heat 2 Tbs. cooking oil in a large saute pan on medium heat. Remove chicken, peppers, and onions, and add to saute pan. Discard marinade.
Cook until chicken is cooked through and peppers and onions are soft, about 8 minutes.
Serve with tortillas, and other taco toppings.
I <3 u Mexican food.
I’ll see you in a month.
Make sure to check in for my London posts in the coming weeks!
And while I’m gone, make sure to indulge in some tacos and cheeseburgers for me.
Song of the Day: Bear–The Antlers
I can never really seem to keep up with the holidays.
AKA if I actually write a holiday-themed post before said holiday actually occurs, I’m pretty on top of my game.
Unfortunately, that oftentimes does not happen, and I lay in bed drinking caffeinated tea on a Thursday night at 11:30 p.m. writing a post on chicken. (In other words: Happy Cinco de Mayo).
Plus, it’s finals week(s). Also known as the week where I actually think that my brain is going to shut down in a quite literal sense and I will have to spend the rest of my life lying in bed petting a dog.
But that remains to be seen…
It’s weeks like this that make me have an actual mental breakdown including, but not limited to: crying, hyperventilation, having weird dreams about people, and panic attacks with symptoms that make me think I’m having a heart attack.
(And regardless of your age or health status, having a heart attack is a total logical solution when you’re in the midst of a stress-induced episode).
Really, it’s charming.
Luckily, I have been doing fairly well at keeping my shit together considering I always spend a good two weeks stressing about finals/studying until my eyes sting from exhaustion only to ace my exams and realize I could have slept at least twice as long as I did.
SOS. Please tell me you all do this too. (If you tell me you’re one of those people that can just pass a test without studying or trying, I’ll scream).
It’s these weeks where I really have to find my happiness in the little ways. Luckily for me, I find very great joy in small things like good coffee, hearing an old song I haven’t heard in a long time, and coming home to a crockpot filled with cilantro lime shredded chicken (because let me tell you…it smells amazing).
I’ve made this chicken two weeks in a row, so you know it’s good. I’ve used it for tacos and burrito bowls, but you could also do enchiladas, tostadas, nachos, etc. Whatever shredded chicken treat your little heart desires <3
1 lb. chicken breasts
1 1/2 c. chicken broth
Juice of 1 lime
1/4 c. cilantro, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 tsp. chili powder
1/2 tsp. onion powder
1/4 tsp. oregano
1 tsp. cumin
1/4 tsp. paprika
1/4 tsp. ceyenne pepper
Salt and pepper, to taste
Spray a crockpot with non-stick cooking spray or olive oil. Place chicken breasts in crockpot. Add remaining ingredients. Stir to cover chicken with spices. Cook for 7-8 hours on low or 3-4 hours on high.
If you need me, I’ll be stuffing my face with chicken tacos to ease my worries. So far, it has seemed to work.
Except for the weird dreams about people. Those are (apparently) here to stay. On a side note: many people get uncomfortable when you tell them the details of your strange dreams involving them.
So maybe that’s something I’ll work on next.
But probably not.
Song of the Day: The Moon Song–Karen O and Ezra Koenig
(seriously though, best musical combo ever)
Happy International Women’s Day! I am actually very excited for this day, because I spent it among so many amazing women. I am actually in a sorority at my university, but I normally do not tell people about it. Please understand that under no circumstances am I ashamed of my sorority in any way. I actually think that it is an amazing organization and I am so proud of my sorority!
The reason I do not tell people about my involvement in a sorority is because of how judgmental other people are. Being in a sorority, people automatically assume three things about you: You are dumb. You are slutty. And you are just in college to marry a rich guy.
And when you are actually a young, educated, motivated, well-rounded individual who is working her ass off to get a degree, it really sucks when somebody just assumes that you are none of those things. When I tell people that I am in a sorority, people are normally super surprised. Based on how I look, the activities I am in to, the music I listen to, and all of my interests, etc. etc. people have no idea that I would ever be in a sorority. However, I would love to change the stereotype and help prove that we really are a smart, diverse group of young women!
My favorite part of my sorority is that our main goal is scholarship, and we do a ton of community service.
And tonight, my sorority, along with all of the other sororities and fraternities at our university, had a banquet where we were awarded on things such as scholarship, community service, and philanthropy.
In the end, we won the most awards (including Best Overall Chapter). It was amazing to know that all of the hard work we put in to our sorority paid off, and I am so proud to have these women in my life! I think we’re pretty amazing.
So, yeah. Happy International Women’s Day to my mom, grandmas, aunts, cousins, friends, inspirations, and of course, my sorority sisters!
If these already look familiar to you, it is probably because of thiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiis.
The hand painted wine glasses are my most popular post on my website. The other day, I was at Ross and I saw these margarita glasses for $5. I automatically wanted to paint them! Margarita glasses are already so fun, and I thought they’d look super cool with rainbow colors dotted all over them.
I was right.
Also, I thought it would be fun to add some updated instructions/show off how cool these look.
(Really, I just wanted to celebrate Cinco de Mayo early).
(There’s worse things in life).
Materials You’ll Need:
Glass paint (I recommend Martha Steward glass paint)
Lollipop sticks/Q-tips/something to paint dots with
1. Find a surface to work on. I prefer right in front of my TV where I can watch Disney movies and eat French fries.
2. Wipe down the glasses with rubbing alcohol. This just ensures that there is absolutely no dirt or gunk on them.
3. Get your paint ready. I have all of the primary colors + white, and I just mix the colors that I want. Using your lollipop stick/Q-tip/painting stick, paint little dots all over the foot, stem, and the bottom of the cup. You can paint wherever you like, but leave about a 1-inch space below the rim. I paint 1 color at a time so the paint does not dry out. Do all 4 glasses.
4. Place glasses on a baking sheet.
READ THIS NOWWWWWW: Place the baking sheet in a COLD oven.
Turn on the oven to 350* F. When the oven is heated, set the timer for 30 minutes.
When 30 minutes is up, turn off the oven and leave the glasses in there until the oven is COLD again.
Otherwise they could explode and it would be messy and sad )-:
Take the glasses out, wash with warm, soapy water, and then they’re ready to enjoy!
Yay for cute glasses + limes + salt.
(Literally a cool margarita glass with OJ in it).
Go make them for Cinco de Mayo now!
Because nothing is more fun than cool margarita glasses and Mexican food and dancing in your kitchen with your friends on May 5.
Song of the Day: Oxford Comma–Vampire Weekend
“Hey, Sara. Why are you taking pictures of that guacamole?”
“Errrrrrr, uhhhhhm, weeeeelllllllll…..”
I feel like that just summed up my life in two sentences.
That was a quote from one of my roommates. Sometimes it takes a while to openly admit that you’re a food blogger. Not that I’m ashamed. Just that it’s not something that just comes up all the time.
Until your roommate walks in, practically smacking you in the head with the front door while you “rap squat” with a camera pointing directly at a bowl of guac. Don’t know what the “rap squat” is? Check this out here. That should sum it up for you/give you a good laugh.
Anyways, yeah, guac. I’m pretty sure that I’m allergic to avocados considering I never feel all that great after eating them, but I don’t care. Because they’re worth it. Why are they so good?!
This guac has corn and black beans in it, like that really great salsa, except that it’s in guacamole! Yes, please and thank you.
But Sara, doesn’t regular guacamole have tomatoes and onions in it?
Uhm, don’t you have something better to do? Shouldn’t you be watching Netflix or something? I recommend It’s Always Sunny. (No, Netflix is not compensating me for that comment. But I am interested Netflix. Need a cute little redheaded spokesgirl? Sorry, was that conceited?).
But for real, the answer is yes. But I hate raw onions and I forgot tomatoes at the store. You may add them if you want. I just did not have the necessary ingredients with me. Sorry ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
Let’s get started!
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1/2 lime, juiced
1/4 tsp. onion powder
Salt and pepper, to taste
4 drops Tobasco, or to taste
1/4 c. corn (fresh, frozen, canned, your choice)
1/4 c. black beans (I used canned. Make sure to drain and rinse!)
Cut your avocado in half, around the pit. Jam your knife into the pit and yank it out. Just twist a little, it’ll come out. Don’t cut your hand! You can do this guys.
Put the avocado in a good mashing bowl with your garlic, lime juice, onion powder, salt and pepper, and Tobasco.
Smash it with a fork!
Screw the fork, this is taking to long. Use a potato masher.
Oh yeah, I don’t have a potato masher.
The fork works.
Stir in black beans and corn!
Serve with these! They’re way healthier than regular corn chips and they’re way more delicious!
Again, not being compensated. Again, interested.
This should serve 4 regular, healthy sized portions. But we all know you’re going to eat half of it like me. Don’t be like me, kids. Do yourself a favor. Learn portion control.
You know what, avocados are really good for you, eat however much you want.
And let me know how that goes.
1. To find a good avocado, take the little stem off. If it’s green, it’s ripe! If it’s creamy white/tan, it’s not ripe. If it’s dark brown or black, it’s bad!
2. To keep guacamole from going brown and goopy, cover it with water. Then just dump it out and stir whenever you want to eat it. Kind of sounds gross, but it’s not (it’s just water) and it’s better than brown clumpy guac. The reason it works is because food can’t oxidize in water! Yeah, science bitch! (Breaking Bad, anyone?)
Song of the Day: Honestly?–American Football