Roasted Tomato Salsa

When we moved to Mexico 5 years ago, it became clear very quickly that there was NO SUCH THING as jarred salsa.  in fact, I’m pretty sure it’s illegal there.

You could buy fresh-made salsa from the deli section of the grocery store, or from the little old ladies down at the mercado, but I decided to learn to make it myself.  It took me a while to get the proportions just right, but now I have a recipe(ish) that my friends and family love!

One of the things I miss most about living in Mexico, is the abundance of fresh and DIRT CHEAP produce.  Going downtown to the mercado each week to buy fruits and veggies is one of my treasured experiences.  Sure, the smell of rotting meat wasn’t the greatest, but bags full of produce that I only paid 11 US dollars for?  So worth it.

charred_tomato_salsa

Another thing I miss (not to be compared with street tacos…not even close), is my gas range!  I was terrified to have a gas anything because I had never lived with it before.  Turns out, it’s not all that scary and is quite useful for burning veggies for my roasted tomato salsa!  But alas, I am back in Texas without a gas range or even a grill, so I have turned to the high broil setting of my oven to get those crispy veggie skins.

cumin_salt_cilanatro

Now this is the part where your very own roasted tomato salsa gets personal.  Some of you hate onions…others of you prefer mild, while others of you prefer hell fire on your tongue.  And then there’s the absolutely hate cilantro crowd, which I was a personal member of until living in Mexico.  There’s no escaping it there – in fact, you’re not allowed to leave the country until you don’t mind cilantro so much and love tequila.  Truth.

blender_salsa

Once you’ve decided on what kind of salsa person you are, all you have left to do is throw your roasted veggies and remaining ingredients into a blender.  It’s seriously so easy, you’ll feel like you’re not even trying.  It’ll still be warm when you first make it, which is my favorite way to eat it.  Hot or cold, serve up your own roasted tomato salsa every time you have company over for a major ego boost with minimal effort.

Peace & love,

Carrie

Ingredients

6 Roma tomatoes, or whichever ones are the reddest that season

1 Jalapeno (or more if you like it spicy – serranos are even spicier)

1 whole onion

Handful of cilantro

1 Tablespoon of salt (more or less to taste)

1 Tablespoon minced garlic (more or less to taste)

2 teaspoons cumin (more or less to taste)

Instructions

Roast the tomatoes, onion and pepper(s) under a broiler or over an open flame.  I broil for 25 minutes.

When veggies are charred to your liking, use a blender to combine all of the ingredients.

Belong, Colossians 3:12

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Knowing Whose You Are

I’ve been struck by the portrayal of princes and princesses in movies over the years.  So often, we see them walking through the villages of their kingdom, being humble and kind to commoners, never mentioning who they are.  We don’t tend to see them as boastful or proud as they encounter people, even though they could easily abuse the authority that they obviously posses. Instead, they are rightfully confident because they know the kingdom and all it’s glory belongs inherently to them.

While this is just the movies, I believe it to be a great depiction of how we would respond to people around us if we were confident in who we belong to. Can you imagine walking around without insecurity or the need make yourself known?  No fear, no competition, no feelings of being an outcast.  It seems like a lofty goal, but can be attained only from knowing whose you are.

I Belong

If I have confidence that I am a child of the The King, then there is no reason for me to flaunt it.  I’m secure in my position of royalty.  I belong to God, and am an heir to His Kingdom.

Amazingly, this doesn’t bring about arrogance because I understand that I don’t deserve this belonging. However, it was granted to me by a loving Father who wanted me as His daughter – He chose ME.

Because I understand that I am chosen and dearly loved, I am free to be compassionate, kind and humble.  That makes this hippie heart happy.

Peace & Love,

Carrie

Fancy Ramen

fancy-ramen

fancy-ramen

I love to cook, but am often working with a tight budget.  Ramen is about as cheap as a meal comes, but who wants to eat that?  I tried a few recipes on Pinterest to “fluff” the ramen, but all of them fell flat.  So I decided to try my own recipe, which is chock-full of veggies and a current family favorite.  It’s cheap, easy and soooo delicious! My teens AND my hubby love it – we call it, Fancy Ramen.

fancy-ramen-noodles

Pictured above are the kid-friendly chop sticks my friend gave to me, but sadly, I can’t even work those.  Where’s my fork?

There are probably a thousand different ways that you could make this, but this is our favorite recipe.

fancy-ramen-shrimp

Saute a 1/2 pound of shelled and deveined shrimp in a tablespoon of butter, in a non-stick stir -fry pan, or any saute pan.  Remove from pan once cooked through, about 3-4 minutes.  Crack 3 eggs right into your pan, and scramble them up until cooked through, then remove from pan.  Please note that if your budget is running really tight, you can omit the shrimp, or add another meat.  Eggs are always  great way to economically add protein to this dish.

fancy-ramen-veggies

Pick a stir-fry kit from your local grocery store, in whatever flavor you like.  This is your no-fail step for success because all of the veggies and sauce for your recipe are in one bag!  Also grab a bag of shredded cabbage for this dish.

easy-ramen

Throw half of the bag of cabbage and the whole bag of veggies (set the seasoning sauce aside) into your stir-fry skillet tat has been coated with a bit of olive oil.

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While your veggies cook, boil two packages of ramen noodles, in any flavor.  Trow away the seasoning packets, you won’t need them.  You can also buy plain ramen from specialty stores if you desire.

ramen-veggies

After the veggies have cooked down to your desired tenderness (we like ours a bit crunchy),  add in the other ingredients.

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The cooked noodles.

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The scrambled eggs and cooked shrimp.  Also add in sliced green onions, and toss with the sauce packet.

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Serve and enjoy!  This dish really couldn’t be easier, and if you have a veggie-lovin’ family like I do, then your Fancy Ramen is sure to be a hit!  And don’t be afraid to try your own variation – different meats, no meat, a different variety of veggies, or even your own home made sauce. There really are so many possibilities if your feeling adventurous!

fancy-ramen-dinner-with-shrimp

 

Peace & Love,

Carrie

Fancy Ramen

Ingredients

  • 1 T Butter
  • 8 oz. Shrimp, peeled & deveined
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 T olive oil
  • 1 package of Stir-fry vegetables with sauce
  • 1/2 package of shredded cabbage
  • 2 packages ramen, any flavor (discard flavor packets)
  • 3 green onions, thinly sliced

Instructions

  1. Melt the butter in a stir-fry skillet, over medium-high heat.
  2. Cook the shrimp until pink, 3-4 minutes; remove from pan.
  3. Crack the 3 eggs right into the pan and scramble until fully cooked; remove from pan.
  4. In a separate pot, bring enough water to cover the noodles to a boil; add in the ramen and cook till tender, draining the water when finished.
  5. Add the olive oil to the pan and let it heat up.
  6. Add the veggies and cabbage to the heated olive oil and let them cook down to desired softness, stirring occasionally.Remove from heat.
  7. Add the noodles, cooked shrimp, cooked egg, sauce packet from kit and the sliced green onions to the veggies and toss until well blended,
  8. Serve & enjoy!
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fancy-ramen

Sunday Blessing 3-6-16

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james-1-17

Even our very breath is a gift from God.  Spend some time thanking Him today for the good things in your life, even if you’re facing personal trials.  

Peace & Love,

Carrie

Succulents in Vintage Coffee Cups

succulents-coffee-cups

succulents-coffee-cups

Yesterday, I decided to plant some succulents in vintage coffee cups, that I purchased at The Salvation Army for just forty cents each.  There was something about the cups that I thought was cool, but I wasn’t sure what I was going to do with them.  I remembered that Miss Mustard Seed had a blog post last Summer about  putting house plants in some of her vintage dishes, and thought that would be a good use for these coffee cups.

coffee-cup-planters

Now, I’m not a “houseplant” person because it’s just one more thing to try and keep alive.  Succulents, however, are next to impossible to kill – seriously, you could not water them for like, a year, and they would still be kicking.  Maybe not a year, but you get the idea.  You can also break a piece off of one and re-plant it somewhere else and it’ll take root and flourish.  On top of all of that, succulents are adorable in my opinion, so I ran to the local florist to grab a few.

decorating-with-succulents

In 10 minutes, I had the perfect, decorative greenery to place around my house.

decorate-with-succulents

succulent-in-cup

succulent-in-coffee-cup

Placing succulents in vintage coffee cups and other dishes is a pretty, and easy way to add no-fuss greenery to your home!

Succulent-coffee-cup

If you have pics of your stylish greenery, please send them my way! I’m always looking for inspiration.

Peace & Love,

Carrie