Basil Mint Lemonade – May Foodie Pen Pal Reveal

Exciting stuff! This month I actually GOT something from my newest foodie pen pal ๐Ÿ™‚ She sent me a recipe that she recently posted on her blog for Basil Mint Lemonade AND everything I would need to make it! Including a pitcher and two cups… sugar… lemons, basil, mint… Everything!

I waited until I went to visit my family and then made the lemonade for a nice Memorial Day treat ๐Ÿ™‚

I’ve included the original post from Smitten Foodie where you can find the recipe and a beautiful picture of her lemonade!

The following is “Lorna’s simplified version of how to make fantastic lemonade”. Enjoy!

First you need to wash and peel several lemons, trying very hard to only get the yellow part and none of the white.

To make the simple syrup combine the basil leaves, mint, lemon peel, sugar and water in a medium pan and bring to a simmer. Take the syrup off the heat and let it the flavors get all infused together for about an hour (or longer if you feel the need to take a Sunday afternoon nap).

My sister Abby was my assistant photographer/chef! She did a good job putting up with my bossiness in the kitchen. Actually – she does pretty well putting up with all of my bossiness ๐Ÿ™‚The next step in the lemonade adventure is to find a man with strong hands (aka Dad) or use a lemon juicer to squeeze all of the many lemons and limes needed for this refreshing drink!

Last but not least – combine all ingredients, add water and… Enjoy!

Thank you Connie for this fun package of goodies!

A few extra thoughts about this recipe:

We discovered the fact that the addition of the lemon/basil/mint simple syrup is an out-of-this-world addition to iced tea! Seriously – I think I like it better then the lemonade. The basil is what really does it. SO good.

That’s all!

(OOPS! Totally forgot to add info about the Foodie Pen Pal program! Be sure to go check out The Lean Green Bean and get all the details from Lindsay here —-> Foodie Pen Pals)

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Hooked on sandwiches

Sorry I’ve been gone so long :-/

Thought I’d take a moment to try to make your mouth water! Check out what I’ve been eating recently…

– Multi-grain bread, toasted with butter

– Creamy goat chevre

– Sliced turkey breast

– Spicy sprouts

– Sliced tomato, cucumber and red bell pepper

A little salt and pepper and… Voila! Best Sandwich Ever!

Got some mail

I got my first ever package from the Foodie Pen Pals program! More specifically from my May foodie pen pal. Thanks Connie! I can’t tell you anything right now except – I’m pretty sure this will be delicious ๐Ÿ™‚

Stay tuned for the reveal day on May 31st when I can tell you all about the great box of tastiness I got in the mail. I love getting mail! You know… other then the bill type…

In the meantime – check out The Lean Green Bean for more details on the foodie pen pal program! You should do it ๐Ÿ™‚

Dinner with the girls…

My family has scattered to the four corners of the earth. Well – more like the 2.5 corners of the earth. My brother got on a plane to Korea last week and most of my family moved to the middle of Washington on Sunday. It has been a tiring and emotional couple of weeks. I hate saying goodbye, however temporarily or short term. Thankfully two of my sisters are staying on this side of the state, and my best friend Ayla is sticking around for a little while.

One of our goals for the summer is to make dinner together once a week. It will be a challenge because we all have pretty different schedules – but we’ve already succeeded once! Last night we had the welcome addition of the youngest member of Hannah’s host family join us…

For dinner I made fresh gluten-free, corn-free pasta! Ayla actually did all of the hard work, she rolled it all out while I worked on the sauces.ย Gluten-free dough is much more delicate then regular dough but as long as you pay attention and work a little slower – there shouldn’t be any problems. The nice thing about it is even if it does fall apart you can just squish it back together and start over!

The recipe I used for this pasta is an adaptation of a recipe from the Gluten-Free Girl – Shauna Ahern.

Note: When working with gluten-free flours and adjusting recipes, it is important to use weight instead of volume to measure them. That is why I have the weight of each flour in this recipe. I also used only guar gum instead of a combination of guar and xanthan gum because xanthan gum is a byproduct of corn.

Homemade Gluten Free Pasta

Ingredients

  • 1.25oz amaranth flour
  • 1.25oz millet flour
  • 2.125oz potato starch
  • 2.5oz quinoa flour
  • 3 tsp guar gum
  • 1 tsp fine sea salt
  • 2 large eggs
  • 4 large egg yolks

Directions

  1. Whisk the eggs and egg yolk together in a small bowl.
  2. Combine the dry ingredients in a medium bowl, make a well in center and pour in the whisked eggs and egg yolks.
  3. Stir all ingredients together with a fork until mostly combined.
  4. Using your hands, knead remaining dry ingredients into the dough until it is completely incorporated. (You will know the dough is complete when it feels kind of like play-dough.)
  5. After making the dough – tear the dough into golf ball sized pieces, flatten with your hands and dust with a little millet or quinoa flour to limit the stickiness.
  6. Use either a pasta maker or a rolling pin to roll the dough into thin sheets. Roll each piece as thin as you can before it starts to tear.
  7. After rolling the dough out, use either a knife (or a pizza cutter) or the fettuccine setting on the pasta machine to cut each piece into ribbons of pasta.
  8. Toss the cut pasta with a little flour so that it won’t stick together when you are ready to cook it. Always cook pasta in a large pot with plenty of salted boiling water. You want the pasta to be able to roll around freely and not stick to itself. Salt the water until it tastes like sea water. That gives your pasta extra flavor! This pasta is done cooking very quickly so you want to check it after it’s been cooking for just a few minutes. You don’t want it to be over cooked because it will just turn to mush. When done, drain it and add a little olive oil to prevent it from sticking.

To top the pasta I made two different sauces. The red sauce was made with canned grape tomatoes, tomato paste, sauteed garlic and onions, white wine, spinach, diced zucchini and sea salt. Delish ๐Ÿ™‚ I also made a seafood sauce that used two cans each of Trader Joes crab and shrimp (including the juices), lots of butter with sauteed garlic, onions, leeks and mushrooms, as well as white wine and sea salt. At the very end I added half a pint of heavy cream and kept it on the heat just long enough to get hot.

Even Hannah liked this sauce and she doesn’t like seafood! We also sauteed some asparagus in butter and salt and ate that on the side.

All in all it was a great evening, especially because we were able to Skype with the family and get a tour of the new house!

I wonder what we’re having for dinner next week?

Save The Storks

As many of you know, I live and work as the Resident Manager at a maternity home for needy women.

The vision that Save The Storks has for this country really hit home with me when I watched this video. I am without words to explain how this makes me feel. We NEED to put one of these buses outside of every abortion clinic! And we need to revamp pregnancy centers everywhere so they can handle the outcome…

And the Winner Is…

The winning commenter of Eye of the Sword is… Caroline Rose Farris! Congratulations Rosie ๐Ÿ™‚ I guess it’s good for you that you were the ONLY person to leave a comment within the required time frame. Come ON people! Time to give these family members of mine a run for their money…

You can read my review of the book that Rosie just won here, and after reading the review you can vow to enter the next book give away I have ๐Ÿ˜‰

You can also check out my sisters blog –ย  The Writing Challenge. Enjoy!