Friday, June 28, 2013

Daniel & Andrea's Visit: Summer Heat

A week from today actually, we had one of Sam's best friends, Daniel, visit along with his beautiful girlfriend, Andrea for a few days. It was a total blast, however, with them also came the SUMMER HEAT. It was a little brutal to say the least, so we eagerly looked for activities to do to escape it. It was an eventful 5 days as we experienced luxury movie seats, paradise beaches, island adventures, delicious cuisine, and lot of great conversation. We were so blessed to have them come out here, as Daniel sure does know how to liven up the party- thanks Daniel! We also, enjoyed a sweet little mini-vacation in our hometown, even while working to give them a tour of this picturesque place. We were sad to have them go, but I'm sure they were glad to get out of this crazy heat too, they were champs! Below is a few pictures of their stay here in La Paz.

The best part about the arcade was that it was nice & cool-- score!

We really had such a nice time & hope that they can come visit soon, perhaps just not when its not 100+ degrees out! It meant so much to us that they would come out to see us & we are so grateful for their friendships. God is always so good in encouraging & loving us through others.
 "Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing."

 1 Thessalonians 5:11

Friday, June 14, 2013

Quinoa Beet Burgers

These patties are so fun as they look just like a red juicy beef burger, but completely meat-free & packed full of protein. These beauties are full of nutrients & flavor, simply delicious plain or spruced up with all your favorite fixings -- tomato, avocado, mushrooms, all wrapped in leafy greens or a bun, you choose. They are simple & can easily be frozen so you can just heat back up & have a great healthy, meal all ready. Seriously, one of y favorites I have made yet, enjoy!

Quinoa Beet Burgers: (6 patties)

1 cup garbanzo beans
1 cup quinoa, cooked
2 medium-sized red beets, cooked*
1 tablespoon coconut or olive oil
1/2 onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 large egg
1/2 cup oats, lightly pulsed
3 tablespoons chia seed
1 small lime, squeezed
1 tablespoon vinegar
1 tsp cumin
salt & pepper
* Beets: boil water, remove skin with a knife, chop into large chunks, place in water, cook for 10 minutes until soft, & drain.

  • Preheat oven to 350F degrees. Line a baking sheet & set aside.
  • Place garbanzo beans, beets oil, onion, garlic, lime juice, & vinegar in a food processor. Pulse until a smooth consistency is reached.
  • In a large bowl, toss in quinoa, chia seeds, oats, & seasoning. Add wet mixture + the egg, fold together until thoroughly mixed. Should be a thick wet consistency, if it is too dry add a tablespoon of water at a time.
  • With your hands, mold the mixture into 6 patties. Place on baking sheet & cook for about 15-20 minutes on each side. 

Monday, June 3, 2013

Samie's Grad & Farewell Party

After much discipline, determination, hard-work, and perseverance, my twin sister, Samie graduated from UCSD. Although it may have been a long season, filled with too much studying, late nights, and a roller-coaster of emotions, she accomplished it, learning a few things along the way ;) 

Now that she has officially closed this chapter of her life, she already starts a new one today, except over on the East Coast @ Johns Hopkins for graduate school, in hopes to pursue her dream of becoming a physician.
(You can read more about all this here.)

 We are so proud of you sis, what an inspiration & motivation you are-- we love you! Here is a few images re-capping her party, it was so much fun to celebrate her & all her accomplishments. You will BE great!




Southwestern Pasta Salad 
w/ Avocado Cilantro Dressing
1 bag of tri-color noodles
1/2 cup frozen corn
1 cup shredded carrots
1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
1 red bell pepper, chopped
1/2 red onions, diced
1 can black beans, rinsed
1/4 cup chopped cilantro
1 cup mexican cheese blend, shredded

2 ripe avocados
1/4 cup plain Greek yogurt
1/4 cup pasta water
2-3 tablespoons fresh lime juice
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon white vinegar

2 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
1 teaspoon oregano
1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
salt & pepper

  • Cook pasta according to package directions. Let cool. Add remaining ingredients, gently toss together. 
  • Make sauce by combining ingredients in a food processor until smooth. Mix into pasta salad until well combined.

Salami Pressed Sandwich 
w/ Arugula Pepita Pesto:
french bread
sun-dried tomatoes
provolone cheese

2 cups arugula, packed
1/3 cup olive oil
1/4 cup feta cheese
1/3 cup roasted pepitas
1 garlic cloves

  • Grind pesto ingredients in a food processor until smooth.
  •  Layer sandwich as a whole loaf. Wrap tightly with saran-wrap & place in fridge overnight with a heavy book to weigh-down & press. 

Turkey Pressed Sandwich 
w/ olive oil:
french bread
cheddar cheese
sun-dried tomatoes
onion, sliced
olive oil

  •  Layer sandwich as a whole loaf. Wrap tightly with saran-wrap & place in fridge overnight with a heavy book to weigh-down & press. 

Spicy Garlic Siracha Hummus:
Our older sister made THIS recipe, which was a big hit. Had perfect combination of flavors with a little heat.

Chai Tea Cupcakes
w/ chai spice frosting:

Same recipe used @ my older sister's BRIDAL SHOWER, click here for the recipe. 
NOTE: Used powdered chai spice for the  flavor instead.

Homemade Coconut Paletas 

(spanish for popcicles): makes ~20

NOTE: I did not measure, these are simply rough estimates.
1 can coconut milk (full fat)
3/4 bag of sweetened shredded coconut
6 cups vanilla ice cream

  • Blend ice cream & coconut milk together. Add shredded coconut, stir to mix. Pour in freezer popsicles molds for 3 hours. Remove & Repeat.

Oreo Paletas: (makes ~20)
6 cups vanilla ice cream
2 cups milk
1 bag oreo cookies

  • Place in a blender & pulse until mixed. Cookies should reach a fine consistency to freeze well & hold shape when removing from mold. 
  • Pour into molds, freeze for about 3 hours or until solid. Remove & Repeat.