Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Tasty Tuesdays: 7 Layer Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars

I know what you're thinking two oatmeal desserts two weeks in a row .. come on Waverly branch out a bit! In my defense,  I was sent the most generous box of chocolates this past Saturday from Pascha Chocolate & I knew that I had to make something amazing with the chocolates that they sent me. In light of it being Thanksgiving this week I decided to choose a "Tasty Tuesday" recipe in honor of the one person I'm most thankful for, my husband, who loves anything with coconut & chocolate <3 We've been together since high school, and let me tell you this man gets better and better every year! These past six months have been pretty crazy since we literally packed up our lives & moved to New York, but I wouldn't trade them for anything. There's no way that I could handle all the challenges and new experiences New York has brought into my life without his love & support. All that mushy stuff being said .. let's get to the chocolate aka the cookie/candy bars that I made this afternoon! Thank you Half Baked Harvest for sharing this scrumptious recipe with me :)

Have any of you ever clicked on the little adds that pop up on the side of your screen? The other day I saw one from Motts saying how you can substitute a 1/2 cup of applesauce in place of vegetable oil in baking recipes .. so I gave it a shot in this one :) Other than the texture being a little different I didn't notice much of a difference & neither did the hubby #winning!

Special thanks again to Pascha Chocolate for supplying me with the most intense and rich chocolate that I've ever had the pleasure of inhaling  eating. Another thing I'm truly thankful for is my health, which a lot of times I take for granted. A small example of something I think a lot of us don't think about is how easy we have it grocery shopping. I can pretty much walk into the grocery store or bodega whenever I want & grab anything off the shelf without having to read through every ingredient. One of my cousins Erin, has a little girl who is allergic to nearly everything, which requires her to make almost everything her daughter eats from scratch to ensure that it doesn't have any contaminants. That being said, I think it's awesome that Pascha Chocolate has created a quality organic fair trade product that is free from peanuts, nuts, dairy, soy, eggs, fish, wheat, & gluten, providing a chocolate fix to those who have to be so very careful of what they consume. Wishing you all a sweet rest of the week & a Happy (early) Thanksgiving!

PS: You still have time to enter the NYC Getaway Giveaway :)

Thursday, November 20, 2014

NYC Trip Giveaway

I have some exciting news for all of you today, you and your #StyleBestie are eligible for a girl's getaway to New York City! Hanes Hosiery is hosting an awesome giveaway, and all you have to do to enter is submit a picture of you and your bestie [[here]]  :) Whoever is selected will be flown to NYC, get to go on a $500 shopping spree, and receive a top drawer full of legwear. Make sure to enter by 12/5/14 & you must be at least 21 years old. See Official Rules for details. Hanes Hosiery was generous enough to send my style bestie Trisha & I each a pair of tights in honor of their giveaway .. so we had a full on photo shoot in Central Park!

Dress-FOREVER 21 (last worn here), Sweater-J.CREW, Tights-C/O HANES HOSIERY, Boots-STEVE MADDEN

When I had to pick a style bestie it was an easy choice, because Trisha & I have a history of "twinning." On several different occasions we've shown up to events wearing similar outfits, & one time we actually showed up wearing the EXACT same outfit :) 

Now it's time for you to go grab your style bestie & enter the giveaway, good luck <3

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Tasty Tuesdays: Thanksgiving Recipes

It's so freakin cold here in NYC .. I mean it's insanely cold outside. That being said, I enjoy baking more when it's cold outside & have been having a lot of fun in the kitchen :) With Thanksgiving coming up I was really excited to be sent a new cook book to review here on the blog! One of my favorite things about Around the Table, is that Martina McBride takes the time to include ideas for different themed food gatherings & even includes playlists for each of them. I haven't always had the best track record with baking cookies, sometimes they end up puffy like a cloud, and other times they end up being really flat and crunchy. I've made her Triple Chocolate Cranberry Oatmeal Cookies on two separate occasions & they came out perfect both times! 

1 cup all-purpose flour
12 teaspoon baking soda
12 teaspoon ground cinnamon
14 teaspoon kosher salt
10 tablespoons (114 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
12 cup granulated sugar
12 cup packed light brown sugar
1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 tablespoon orange zest
1 cup old-fashioned oats
12 cup semisweet chocolate chunks
1 cup milk chocolate chips
1 cup white chocolate chips
12 cup dried cranberries

1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line two 17 × 13-inch rimmed baking
sheets with parchment paper.

2. Whisk together the flour, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt in a
medium bowl and set aside. In a large bowl, beat the butter, granulated
sugar, and brown sugar with an electric mixer until smooth and fluffy.
Add egg, vanilla, and orange zest and beat until blended. Add the flour
mixture and oats and stir until blended. Stir in the chocolate chunks,
1/2 cup of the milk chocolate chips, ½ cup of the white chocolate chips,
and the cranberries.

3. Drop the batter by rounded tablespoons onto the prepared
baking sheets, at least 2 inches apart. Bake for 12 to 14 minutes, or
until the edges are lightly browned. Cool on the sheets for 5 minutes,
then transfer the cookies to a rack and cool completely.

4. In separate small bowls, microwave the remaining ½ cup milk
chocolate chips and ½ cup white chocolate chips at high power for
1 minute, stirring after 30 seconds. Using a small spoon, drizzle
the melted chocolate over the cookies. Let stand until the chocolate
sets, about 1 hour. (Can be made 2 days ahead. Store in an airtight
container at room temperature.)

Another recipe that I tried out from Around the Table was the Asparagus with Toasted Almonds. I've never "shocked" vegetables before, but it was a nice alternative to sautéing vegetables like I usually do. Toasting the almonds made the whole kitchen smell good, and thanks to this recipe I am now obsessed with shallots :) The recipe is listed below along with some pictures of the final product! Both of these recipes are easy to follow, and would be great additions to any Thanksgiving Feast .. Enjoy <3

·      1⁄3 cup sliced almonds
·      11⁄2 pounds fresh asparagus spears, ends trimmed
·      1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
·      1 large shallot, thinly sliced lengthwise
·      2 tablespoons unsalted butter
·      1⁄4 teaspoon kosher salt
·      1⁄4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1. Heat a small, dry skillet over medium heat and toast the almonds for 3 to 4 minutes, shaking the pan regularly, until light golden brown. Transfer to a plate to cool quickly.

2. Fill a large bowl with ice and water. Bring a large pot of generously salted water to a boil. Add the asparagus and let the water return to a boil. Cook 2 to 4 minutes, depending on thickness, until bright green and crisp-tender. Drain and plunge the asparagus into the ice water to shock, or stop the cooking.

3. Heat ½ tablespoon of the olive oil in a large saute pan over medium heat. Add the shallot and cook until it begins to brown. Turn heat to low, add 1 tablespoon of the butter, and cook 8 to 10 minutes, or until very soft and evenly browned, stirring often. Remove the shallot from the pan with a slotted spoon and set aside.

4. Turn the heat to medium-high and add the remaining ½ tablespoon of oil and the asparagus to the pan. Cook for 3 to 5 minutes, turning often, until heated through. Add the remaining tablespoon of butter, and the salt and pepper, tossing the asparagus to coat as the butter melts.

5. Place the asparagus on a warm serving platter and sprinkle with the reserved shallot and toasted almonds.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Review: Rocksbox

Long time no talk! It's definitely been more that a New York Minute since I've written any fashion related posts on Pich & Roor, but don't worry I've got a fun jewelry post lined up for today :) I'm sure all of you are familiar with all the different monthly box subscriptions that are floating around for snacks, makeup, dog toys, etc. you name it there's a box for it. I've always been curious about signing up for a monthly box subscription, and thanks to Rocksbox I got my first "present" as I like to call it in the mail! Before I got my first Rocksbox I completed the survey which allowed the stylist to get an idea of what style jewelry I like, I entered my address, & viola a few days later I got 3 cute pieces of jewelry at my door in a sweet little box tied up with a bow <3 The concept behind Rocksbox is that it's a risk free way to test drive jewelry before committing to purchasing it. One of my favorite things was the fact that I got to try out pieces that I normally would've shied away from in the past, which was an easy way to step out of my jewelry "comfort" zone. I loved the little personalized note inside, and was pleasantly surprised to see that the stylist picked 2/3 pieces that were totally me, all from a quick 2 minute style quiz :)

My favorite piece from this first Rocksbox was the House of Harlow 1960 "Sunburst" bangle. I've literally worn it every day since I received the package, and it goes with every single item in my wardrobe! It's super sturdy, I don't have to break my hand to get it on & off, and I've received a ton of compliments on it :) The other two pieces I received in my first Rocksbox were earrings from Gorjana & a necklace from Material Fix. I can't wait to see what three pieces they're going to send me next! If you're interested in getting your first month of Rocksbox free, use code: F1R16512 at checkout <3 Happy Humpday!

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Tasty Tuesdays: Crock Pot Beef Stew

As soon as the temps begin to drop I go into crockpot cooking mode! There's nothing better than a rich savory stew or soup when it's chilly outside, and I'm so excited to share this simple and delicious beef stew with you this afternoon :) When I saw this recipe online for beef stew that had over 1,000 reviews I figured it was worth a shot. This recipe is so simple, that there's really no possible way to mess it up, which is my kind of recipe! Below are a couple of the changes that I made to the recipe. I used 1.5 pounds of stew meat from Trader Joe's that had already been chopped, a carton of beef broth, 5 carrots, 3 stalks of celery, & I doubled all the seasonings (you can adjust the amounts to your liking). I didn't have any worcestershire sauce so I skipped that, and instead added a cup of red wine I had laying around :) Other than those small changes, I followed the recipe verbatim & was very happy with the results!  

Since I added more broth to my version, I had a lot of leftovers which I bagged up and froze for another time. The picture above is from this afternoon when I reheated a freezer bag. After reheating the soup this time it was a lot thicker. This stew does take at least 4 hours to make if you cook it on high the entire time, so make sure to plan it in advance. 

Another crock pot meal I've got down to a science is chili, and you can see the complete recipe here. More important that stew, is that today is Veteran's day! I'm so grateful to all the brave men & women who have served our country, & who are still currently serving <3