The Cooking Runner

HAPPY NEW YEAR TO ALL!


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Smooth running

I am starting fresh before the first of the year. ATS and I have a busy next couple months, a vacation,training, and a military ball… yep gotta look good in an evening gown!!! So I dressed for the weather and headed out the door. IMG_0455[1] I think we need better lighting in our house, currently not conducive to picture taking!

After my run, I made THE BEST SMOOTHIE EVER. My inspiration? Pinterest of course. I did not use a specific recipe but a mix of recipes.

Strawberry Blueberry Banana Smoothie

IMG_0453[1]1 banana

1 single serving container vanilla yogurt

1/2c strawberries

1/2c blueberries

1/4 cup milk

1/4 cup Gluten Free oats

Put all the ingredients in the blender and mix until smooth.

This smoothie is not only healthy, but it keeps you fuller longer. The oatmeal adds some extra yummy stuff!

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Christmas Photo Dump

Nap time!

Nap time!

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HO HO HO!

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IMG_0444[1] IMG_0446[1]Hope Everyone had an amazing holiday season!!! Back to working out and eating right!

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On the sixth day of Christmas, my true love gave to me….

6 geese a-laying….well we are back to the birds again. The geese are prolly not a-laying in my neck of the woods. They are hunkered down in their nests, avoiding the winds. 30-40 mph sustained winds with gust up to 55?! Hello winter!

We are all ready for our Christmas getaway, had to run a couple errands this morning and the checkout girl said, “I hate the weather, it sucks.” My response… “you can’t complain until after Christmas” She said nothing and gave me a death stare. She didn’t even respond back when I told her “Merry Christmas” when the transaction was done…BAhhh humBUG chickie poo. Looks like you are on Santa naughty list this year! …now that is something that sucks!

Getting back to our Christmas getaway…packing for winter weather running…wow, the stuff you have to bring!!!IMG_0427[1]

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This is only half the gifts, (but the amount of glitter everywhere is enough for all the gifts) I took the rest of the gifts when I was in Chicago on Wednesday because we can not fit everything in our car…yeah, and we don’t even have kids!

Icebox Shortbread- Martha Stewart Original Recipe

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*I have to give dibs to Martha on this one…I didn’t change anything about this recipe except the oven temp. These cookies are AMAZING.

Ingredients

  • For The Shortbread

    • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
    • 1 cup confectioners’ sugar
    • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    • 1/2 teaspoon salt
    • 2 cups all-purpose flour (spooned and leveled), plus more for rolling
  • Flavor Variations (Optional Mix-Ins And Coatings)

    • Mix in grated zest of 2 oranges and 1/2 cup dried cranberries
    • Mix in grated zest of 2 lemons; coat with 1/4 cup poppy seeds
    • Mix in grated zest of 2 limes; coat with 1/4 cup cornmeal
    • Mix in 1/2 cup chopped dried apricots; coat with 1/2 cup finely chopped pistachios
    • Mix in 1/2 cup mini chocolate or peanut-butter chips
    • Mix in 1/4 cup finely chopped candied ginger; coat with 1/4 cup sesame seeds

Directions

  1. With an electric mixer, beat butter, sugar, vanilla, and salt until smooth. With mixer on low speed, add flour, mixing just until a dough forms. Stir in desired mix-ins.
  2. Divide dough in half; place each half on a piece of floured waxed or parchment paper. With floured hands, gently roll each into a 1 1/2-inch-diameter log. Dividing evenly, sprinkle logs with desired coating if using, rolling log (to help coating adhere) and pressing in gently. Wrap logs tightly in the paper, and refrigerate until firm, 1 to 1 1/2 hours. (To store longer, wrap log and paper tightly with plastic wrap.)
  3. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Unwrap logs; with a serrated knife, slice dough 3/8 inch thick (if dough crumbles, leave at room temperature 5 to 10 minutes). Arrange slices, about 1 inch apart, on baking sheets.
  4. Bake until lightly golden around the edges, 12-15 minutes. Cool on baking sheets 1 to 2 minutes; transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

*You may have to adjust the fllour amounts so the dough is dry enough otherwise your cookies will spread in the oven from the amount of butter in these cookies.

* My mix-ins were pistachios, cranberries, and Lemon zest.

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On the fifth day of Christmas, my true love gave to me….

FIVE GOLDEN RINGS!!!!  (yes those are shouty caps) Finally, we are done with the birds! On the fifth day of Christmas I went downtown Chi-town,IMG_0409[1]  got a Mimosas and Mani Pedi’s with mom and my sister  M. We went to Mani Pedi on Southport. GO THERE Mon-Wed, buy a pedicure get a mani FREE!!! Ask for Min Jin, SHE.IS.AWESOME.IMG_0410[1]Then M and I went shopping on Michigan Ave. My favorite store yesterday? By far Lululemon, I want everything in that store! We went to Watertower to eat and shop. This awesome Lego creation was between the escalators.

Made out of Legos!

Made out of Legos!

We found Foodease Resturant Market. One word YUM. They had a salad bar, $8.19 per pound. Which, yes, reading that it seems expensive. But I do not power load on the dressing. So my salad was $5.00 and it was HUGE. They also have select restaurants around Chicago come in and make food, pre-made sandwiches, bottles of wine, SUSHI!!!!, fruit, and even gluten free items! They also sell quite a few local ingredients as well… BONUS!!!!  recommend it!

pic from Foodease website

pic from Foodease website

Ok here is your cookie recipe!!!!

IMG_0406[1]Spritz Cookies

1 C softened butter

1 C powedered Sugar

1 Egg

1 1/2 tsp Cpt Morgan spiced rum

2 1/2 C flour

In a blender, m ix butter and sugar. Add egg and run, beat until combined. Add flour. Mix until just combined. If the dough is too sticky, add alittle more flour. Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and chill for about 15 minutes. Using a cookie press, press out different shapes. Bake cookies at 375* for 6 minutes. These cookies will burn super fast.

 

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On the fourth day of Christmas, my true love gave to me…

4 calling birds, 3 french hens two turtle doves, and a partridge in a pear tree… Or I could just give you a recap of one fun as hell races I ran this weekend!!!

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via whoville Facebook page

It was a 5k fun run, it was not timed. The race supported a great cause, Wounded Warrior, and the shirts were long sleeve Patagonia tech t-shirts…AMAZING!!!!!  My new race running buddy (she just doesn’t know it yet) ran with me for the first time!!! K- I am compiling a list of 5k’s…

27888_3450570842544_1031094536_n32365_4958421959836_363621966_nApparently I need to soak my vest in some Bright White, it is lookin a little dingy next to good ole’Santa!

Oh Yeah…Can’t forget Whoville Gangnam style!!!!

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taken by Rudy Malmquist of Mindutopia

Once again not my picture, but check out the video! and check out more pictures from the race here!

Packet pickup was so convenient. Parking was a breeze. Starbucks coffee and hot chocolate. Lots and Lots of Christmas goodies…

These people need to write a manual about putting on a race. There were a lot of people running and you would have never known it. It was FANTASTIC…way to go WHOVILLE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

WE ARE DOING THIS NEXT YEAR…AND YOU SHOULD TOO!!!

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On the third day of Christmas, my true love gave to me…

Three french hens, two turtle doves, and a partridge in a pear tree.  Who ever wrote this song must really liked birds…A lot. what the heck? Although, 3 french hens would be nice if they laid eggs like the eggs that come from Knot Yet Farms!!! They are super super yummy, with rich flavorful centers and fabulous white. Sheesh I think I am in love! They make Meijer store bought eggs taste like water, disgusting.

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Carmelitas

2c Flour

2c Oats

1 1/2 c brown sugar

1tsp baking soda

1 1/4c very soft butter

carmel butterschotch ice cream topping

1 bag dark chocolate chips

1/2c chopped pecans

Combine flour oats sugar soda and butter in mixer and mix until crumbly. Save three cups and put the rest of the mixture in a lasagne dish. press down with the back of a spatula and bake in a 350* oven for 8-10 minutes. Remove crust from oven and sprinkle the bag of chocolate chips over the crust, followed my the pecans and finally drizzle the carmel butterscotch over that. You will use about a 1/2 c syrup. Sprinkle the reserved three cup mixture on top of everything and bake for another 18 minutes. cool 1 hour and then stick in the fridge for 1-2 hours.

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On the second day of Christmas, my true love gave to me…

Two turtle doves, and a partridge in a pear tree…

Well once again, there are birds again, yep…. although turtle doves are gorgeous birds, I don’t have those either. BUT,  I have the recipe to the good ol’ Puppy Chow. While this is not MY recipe per se, I do tweak it, (would you expect anything else?!) The original recipe came from the Chex website.

Puppy Chow

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9 cups rice Chex

1 bag Dark chocolate Hersey chips

1/2 cup peanut butter

1/2 stick cold butter

powder sugar

(Since our microwave decided to take a crapt, I had to make this on the stove.)

Measure out 9 cups Chex, (it is just about a large box) Put the Chex in a very large bowl.

Melt chocolate, PB, and butter (chopped into pieces) in a pot over low heat. Stir continuously to avoid burning.

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Once melted, pour over Chex and mix until all are coated with chocolate.

Using a Tupperware-type container with a lid, pour some powdered sugar in the container, then add some chocolate Chex, and shake it up!

Repeat until all Chex are coated!

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Speaking of puppies and all… If you are looking for a charity to support this holiday season, please think of AUCADO rescue in Michigan. An amazing rescue, for amazing dogs, run by amazing people!!! Check it out!

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On the first day of Christmas, My true love gave to me…

A partridge in a pear tree…

Ummm………….Well,

I don’t have a partridge, (birds are really messy in the house) or a pear tree…(I live in Michigan=too cold). BUT, I do have the recipe to the yummy cookies I made with my neighbor!!!  Here you go mom  🙂

Best Ever Christmas CookiesIMG_0380[1]

Dough:

4C Flour

1lb Large curd Cottage Cheese

1lb Butter

*Drain Cottage Cheese. Mix all ingredients together and store overnight in Refrigerator.

Nut mixture:

1 1/2 c brown sugar

1c crushed pecans and walnuts

2TBS cinnamon

Divide gough into 8 pieces. Roll one piece out at a time to mimic a pie crust in shape. Brush with melted butter. Sprinkle nut mixture over the butter. Leave about 1/2 inch edge clean around entire circle. Using a pizza cutter, cut into 16 pieces. Roll each triangle into a crescent shape cookies. Place on a parchment paper covered cookie sheet. Bake at 375 for 8-10 minutes. Watch the cookies the last two minutes, they burn fast.

Coffee Drizzle:

1c powdered sugar

1TBS butter

Enough coffee to make a liquid glaze.

Dash of cinnamon.

Mix all the ingredients together. Once the cookies are cool, drizzle coffee glaze over the cookies. Allow glaze to set up. Store cookies in an air tight container. Cookies will only last about two days (well in my house anyways) They will last about 2 weeks.

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Juicing

Juicing day 1… Well the morning was great, I made and drank a juice every two hours until 2pm. I thought for sure, it would not be a big deal if I did not drink another for the next 4 hours. Well, I was very wrong. About 4 pm, I started to feel really light headed, but I was not hungry. Since I was not at home, I had to eat something. I felt amazing until I missed by 4pm juice. Major problem with home juicing…SO TIME CONSUMING. You need to have 3 days off at home so you have time to make the juices or make them all in the morning. So I will try this again after the holidays when I can stay home all day! I did take juices to work to hold me over though!

On the positive side, most of the juices I made were AMAZING!  *Note: I have combined many recipes from many different sources*

Cranberry mixer:

1 1/2 c Cranberry, 1 Orange,2 handfuls Carrot, Beet, Cinnamon- This was ok I am not a huge beet person and I could have done without the beet but still pretty good.

 

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Apple Lunch

1granny smith apple, 1 large cucumber,  about an inch of fresh ginger- This was my favorite. I also put ice in a blender and mixed it to make a slushy, very yummy!IMG_0377[1]

Those were the two juices that I would make again. I will be trying a juice detox again…after the busy holidays!!! It may be a good way to start the New Year!!!

I had my annual cookie day with my awesome neighbor… I am not sure what to call the cookies we make… The greatest Christmas cookies…EVER.IMG_0380[1]

 

We finally decorated our tree last night!!!IMG_0371[1]

ATS came home super late from work last night, had something to eat, then said “Ok lets decorate the tree”  ummm OK! IMG_0375[1]

The dogs love the tree too!!!

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SkinnyRunner

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