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Easy sautéed zucchini and mushrooms

It is the perfect day to post an easy recipe. My boys and I have been enjoying the Minnesota heat, so we have not had time for much else! I have so many wonderful recipes to share with you all, and they will come in the next few days. For now, here are some easy peasy delicious veggies!

I am the only person in my home who enjoys side dishes such as this one. Yay for me! 

Slice 1 large zucchini (ends removed) into 1/4-inch slices. 

Heat 4 tablespoons of extra-virgin olive oil in a skillet over medium heat.

Add the sliced zucchini plus an 8-oz. package of sliced mushrooms (yum).

Cook, tossing occasionally, for 5 to 7 minutes, or until the veggies begin to soften. I tend to like them on the slightly crunchy side, but the amount of cooking time is up to you.

Add salt and pepper and toss. Serve warm! Enjoy this heat!

Printable recipe: Easy sauteed zucchini and mushrooms


Giveaway winner announced!

Thank you to all of you who took my poll and entered the giveaway! I'm glad that none of my family members feel obligated to read. :) 

Commenter #46 was randomly selected as the winner of a $50 Visa gift card. 

Congrats, Brittany H! Email me your mailing address and I will put your $50 in the mail!


Blackeye pea salad

Before I get to a recipe today I would like to tell you how proud I am of my 5-year-old, strong-willed, SMART, funny little boy who has a very special heart. He was diagnosed with Tetralogy of Fallot, Pulmonary Atresia and MAPCAs at birth. So far in his 5 years, he has undergone 3 open heart surgeries and 8 heart cathetrizations, and a half-dozen non-heart-related surgeries, as well. His trials have put life into major perspective for our family. We adore this boy, and we are constantly amazed at how far he has come, and how strong he continues to be throughout it all!

Today we walked 3+ miles to honor him, and the many other kids like him who were born with heart defects. It was a special day! We had a few friends join us for the walk, and that made it even more special. A lot of money was raised today for a very good cause. We were thrilled to be a part of it!

With that said, we are all tired tonight. The boys are fast asleep and I am relaxing on our porch with a glass of wine before heading to bed myself. Real quick, I want to share another delicious summer salad with you all! This can double as a salad and salsa, and many other things, honestly. Spoon it over a burger or a wrap or a sandwich or a green leafy salad.

Want to read more? Head on over to Jeff's Plate, where you can find the rest of the details. My good blogging friend Jeff is getting married next week, so he asked me to write a guest post on his blog while he helped out with wedding details. Of course I said yes! I adore his blog and his food and his friendship, too, of course.

Head on over and wish Jeff and his fiance congratulations! 

Printable recipe: Blackeye pea salad


A poll and a $50 GIVEAWAY!

I am looking to gather valuable information so that I can better please you, my readers! If you would like to be eligible to receive a $50 Visa gift card in your mailbox, all you have to do is:

1. Take the poll at the bottom of this post.

2. Leave a comment on this post telling me that you took the poll.

That's it! Your input is appreciated!

I will randomly select a winner from the comments section of this post on Monday, June 25th at noon.


For additional giveaway entries, leave separate comments for any or all of the following:

- Follow me on Pinterest.

- Follow me on Twitter.

- Follow me on Facebook.

- Follow my RSS Feed.

 Good luck!


Why do you visit this blog? free polls 


Ice cream cookie sandwiches

We have had some steamy hot Minnesota summer days in the past week. Summer! I love it! We have been trying to squeeze in all kinds of summer activities, you know, in between sicknesses. I am hoping the remnants of this congestion that I have will be the last of our family sickness for a while.

On our agenda for the next week: sidewalk paint (Elijah is sooo excited about this), setting up the blow-up pool in our yard and McDonald's ice cream cones (a recent potty treat that we haven't redeemed yet). This past weekend we checked off the following from our summer-fun list: running around outside with cousins while dodging Nerf bullets, driving pink Jeeps and enjoying ice cream sandwiches. 

These ice cream sandwiches were a hit with the kids for our Father's Day gathering last weekend. I heard all kinds of Mmmm-ing and Yummm-ing and slurping going on.

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. Generously spray two 8x8-inch baking dishes with cooking spray (more on this in a bit).

Cut a 16.5-oz. tube of refrigerated cookie dough (at room temperature) in half. Press each half into the bottom of each prepared baking dish.

Bake in the preheated oven for 15 minutes. Remove and let the cookie squares cool completely.

While making my first batch, I learned that it is really really hard to get a giant square cookie out of a glass dish in one piece. For my next batch, I used one glass dish and one aluminum dish. Once the cookies had cooled, I cut down the sides of the foil dish with scissors and easily loosened the cookie from the bottom of the pan with a metal spatula. I had no cookie breaks!

No matter what method you use, even if your top cookie does break, it's not the end of the world. I was able to piece mine together just fine and trust me, nobody eating the final product will notice! 

Keep the other square cookie in the pan and top with half of a 1.75-quart container of softened vanilla ice cream. Smooth the ice cream with the back of a spoon to make even.

Slide the other cookie right over top of the ice cream. If you use my aluminum pan trick, this step is super slick.

Cover the dish with foil and freeze for a minimum of 3 hours. Remove from the freezer and cut into 9 equal squares. It helps to let it sit out for just a few minutes before cutting the squares, but don't let the ice cream get too soft.

If you're feeling crazy, pour some mini chocolate chips into a small bowl and dip the sides of the sandwiches into the chips.

Wrap each sandwich in plastic wrap and place back in the freezer until ready to serve!

Get as creative as you wish! Use strawberry ice cream with sugar cookie dough, or chocolate ice cream with peanut butter cookie dough or use M&M's instead of chocolate chips. 

Most importantly, enjoy summer!

Printable recipe: Ice cream cookie sandwiches