The Very Best Roasted Asparagus 

Want to know how I know this recipe is top notch? 

Jay and I went for dinner at our friends house and Jay actually liked the asparagus! I've never seen him eat it in 9 years. I've never really been overly obsessed with asparagus myself.
I came across these big fat spears of asparagus in the store with no intention of purchasing but the thought of lemony roasted goodness lured me in. Yes I impulse purchase produce.. that's what foodies do. Let me tell you it did NOT disappoint.

  • Preheat oven to 400 Degrees F 
  • Slice woody ends off asparagus
  • Toss asparagus with... 
  • Olive Oil 
  • Kosher Salt
  • Fresh Ground Pepper
  • Sprinkle of red pepper flake
  • Cook for 10-12 minutes (depending on thickness) less time for crunchy spears 
  • After the bake... 
  • Sprinkle Lemon zest on top and juice of 1/2 a lemon and toss. 
  • Serve! 

I like to serve with a roasted chicken breast since the oven is already pre-heated and I'll throw these in the last 10 minutes of the chicken cooking. If I am going a vegetarian route like tonight I just serve with some butter/lemon/garlic rice or noodles. Even my 2 year old eats these like candy! He calls them Green Fries!

Summer Hair don't care! 

This was potentially the last time getting my hair done by Chelsea. She has been doing my hair for the last 9 years! I basically have virgin hair at this point because no one has touched it except this wonderful angel of a hair stylist. 

I've been rocking the baylage/ombre for awhile now. I'm still not bored of it.. yet.. If your a brunette the question is always light vs. dark? Usually you go light for summer in dark for winter. For summer I am staying with the theme! Lot's of fun summery blonde going on here which is only going to get lighter with time. Hopefully longer too because I've been taking this Sugar Bear Hair Care Vitamins like a saint! If you are on the fence about your next hair appointment I highly recommend going lighter! 

Nail Color: OPI You've Got Nata on me
Dress: Target
Sunglasses ---> Michael Kors Aviators

One evening in 2012 Jay and I were watching Anthony Bourdain in Istanbul, Turkey on TV. Jay said "There's a really good air-fare deal to Istanbul right now want to go?"

I must have watched that episode 3 times before we went. I tracked down Ihsan Aknur who was Bourdain's taxi driver in the episode.

We had the BEST time. Seriously. He took us to all the places he took Bourdain and told us what a good man Bourdain was to him. It started a career for Ihsan Aknur as being "The Best Taxi Driver -ever!!"

Jay and I had such a good time we thought... Let's travel the world! 

So we did.

I woke up this morning to hear the sad news that Bourdain committed suicide. This truly saddens me. He was so rich in experience and had a soothing way of story telling on his shows and in his books.

I just wanted to share our memories (wish it was on better terms) and that watching his show and reading his books really inspired us to travel and not only "travel" but really meet people, have true local experiences, and learn about culture. He will truly be missed by Jay and I.

"It seems that the more places I see and experience, the bigger I realize the world to be. The more I become aware of, the more I realize how relatively little I know of it, how many places I have still to go, how much more there is to learn. Maybe that’s enlightenment enough - to know that there is no final resting place of the mind, no moment of smug clarity. Perhaps wisdom, at least for me, means realizing how small I am, and unwise, and how far I have yet to go."

Suicide is a growing problem in the US. If you need help call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255.

So since having baby JJ I have had to simplify my life and my recipes a bit. I know it's sad. Sometimes simple is best though. The simple life of cooking lets you enjoy your life a little more while your still eating good. The crockpot has been my best friend but let's be honest. We all get burnt out on crock pot meals and there's really nothing better in life than a good piece of baked chicken. I have not always been a big fan of making my chicken in the oven. I always worry it's not cooked enough. Then I end up over cooking the chicken. It will be dry, chewy, and just all around awful. I was surfing around on* and came across this gem. Of course you already know I can't fully follow directions and doctored it up a bit so here it goes... 

You'll need- 
-Boneless skinless chicken breast
-Ritz Crackers
-Fresh Garlic
(For a delicious side veg I love asparagus or a quick mashed potato!)

Here is the trick to getting your breading to stick on the chicken- 
Dry it very well with paper towels. I mean really pat it down well so it's almost sticking to the towels. 

Preheat to 375
Set out your dried chicken breasts and season them with S&P
Crack and egg or two and beat it real good in a bowl. Sometimes a couple drops of water helps beat it nicely.
Crush about 15-20 Ritz crackers on a large plate. Paper plates are great because hey! One less dish you'll have to do!
Spray a glass baking dish with pam. You'll want a dish large enough so the chicken breasts have a small amount of space in between them.

Here's the fun and messy part! 
Dip the chicken in the egg and shake off the excess.
Roll it around in the crumbs and press the chicken into the crumbs or press them onto the chicken. Shake off excess and place in baking dish.
Once you're finished...
Cut up a good amount of butter in cubes using 1/2-1 stick worth. Place them around the chicken in the pan. Zest a little lemon on top and cut a garlic clove into quarters and toss that in there.
Set your timer for 15 mins.
Every 15 mins you will baste the chicken with the melted butter mixture. I baste the chicken until there is no juice left then I put it back in the oven for 40-50 minutes. Serve with a lemon wedge!

I really like to make asparagus with this recipe because you already have the oven preheated and asparagus comes out great in the oven! All I do is line a cookie sheet with tin foil (easy clean up.) Cut my asparagus and roll it in some S&P and olive oil. Sometimes I put some lemon zest on it if I feel like it or soy sauce. Squeezing lemon juice on it after it comes out of the oven is good too! I cook them for 8-10 minutes. Comes out great every time!