Apple and Pear Chocolate Hand Pies

by heidi on February 8, 2014

Valentine’s Day. Just knowing that someone loves you should be enough. But…if that’s the case…then why is it so much fun to give, and get, a little love?

Apple and Pear Chocolate Hand Pies

I vividly remember my 3rd grade Valentine’s Day. My doily and construction heart decorated valentine’s box eagerly awaited a valentine, any valentine, from the debonair, brown haired, almost as tall as me, Kendall.

To my relief, his valentine to me was deposited in my gussied up shoebox, along with the same valentine to the other 28 in my class, and it was just about as special as the carbon copy sentiment he gave to everyone else.

It was my first lesson in love: You have to put in the effort to make it special.

This year I’ve already received a warm-up Valentine’s Day Gift Basket from my friends at Harry & David. Once again they’ve proved that they are the experts at knowing how to make the recipient feel special. I wish they’d been around to talk to Kendall…

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Happy Friday friends, and friends of friends and people in front of the screen / tablet / mobile phone who I love / am thankful / adore because you visit this blog and hopefully find something of amusement / interest / tasty to create.

5 Food Blogs I'm Following Now

This week we’re taking a diversion from my usual Friday Faves link / love / lust list.

I’m often asked about new blogs I’ve discovered, who I’m reading now, and where to find inspiration through great recipes and beautiful food photography. So now, on the first Friday of each month, I’ll be sharing some of my favorite food blog finds with you, the blogs I’m reading now.

With the preponderance of food blogs gracing the www, this list is far from comprehensive, and I doubt that even if I had 5,347 Fridays in my lifetime of blogging that I’d ever be able to skirt the surface of the number of food blogs out there that have so much to offer.

Rather, I’m hopeful these short lists will give you some new spots on the web to poke around and be inspired, or maybe remind you of what some of your current favorites are up to.

With that, here’s to another reason to celebrate Fridays and here’s February’s list of 5 Food Blogs I’m Following Now.

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Sweet treats don’t have to be time consuming. They just have to be good. In my book there’s nothing quite as simple, and definitely not as good, as a decadent, rich chocolate. Hit it with a little Chipotle spice and a salty crunch and man oh man, I go weak in the knees. Sounds like every Valentine’s dream, right?

Spicy Chocolate Bark with Chipotle and Almonds

I’ve had a thing for chocolate bark ever since I featured Gerry of the food blog Foodness Gracious in my Holiday Issue of FoodieCrush magazine. Not only does the guy do savory, he also knows his way around the sweet side of the kitchen.

But that wasn’t the first time I fell hard for his confections. The first time I met Gerry was at The Big Traveling Potluck when he handed me one of his luscious specialty caramels. Let’s just say we started off on a very good foot which left me licking my fingers clean.

Spicy Chocolate Bark with Chipotle and Almonds

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$100 Albion Fit Giveaway

by heidi on February 5, 2014

As I write this post for a $100 Albion Fit Giveaway, I’m watching the big—or actually much smaller, leaner and more toned—season finale of The Biggest Loser.

Coincidence? It’s probably more like a get off the old butt and get moving motivator.

Albion Fit Timp Vest

After re-upping the gym membership and making my 2014 diet and fitness goals, I more than welcomed the offer from Albion Fit to check out their workout wear.

The fact that the company is based locally in Salt Lake City and is named after one of my favorite canyons (the wildflowers in the springtime are INSANE) makes my eagerness to try their fitness gear all the more attractive.

And a little workout giveaway doesn’t hurt either.

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Homemade Cheeseburger Macaroni

by heidi on February 3, 2014

I’m not embarrassed to admit it. In our first days of being married—yep, that was just a feeeewww years ago—Cheeseburger Hamburger Helper was totally a favorite of my husband and mine.

Cheeseburger Macaroni

Maybe it’s because my mom rarely made dinner from the box that gave that dang Hamburger Helper version a secret appeal.

Or maybe it was just because it had the basic ingredients that make a comfort food dinner completely craveable: pasta, hamburger and cheese sauce.

We always doctored up the boxed version with sliced onion and mushrooms, it’s not like we could just eat it the cardboard cutout way.

Cheeseburger Macaroni

But when I started reading labels and trying to pronounce words in the ingredient list that I needed to pull out the dictionary for, the boxed version went by the wayside.

But that didn’t mean my craving went away.

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