Shrimp Fra Diavolo

Giada De Laurentis has a winner with this recipe:
Shrimp Fra Diavolo

I served it over pasta (my favorite kind: Rossi), with a salad and a glass of chardonnay. It is the perfect meal, and is quick cooking. Perfect for a late work evening. Which was the case Friday evening.

Saturday started my “free weekend” season. Working at an outdoor wedding venue in Florida, we don’t typically have summer weddings. This is my chance to catch up on my weekends, and travel. This weekend was exactly what I needed. Relaxation and no huge plans.

Saturday, I found myself at a recent favorite, Tijuana Flats, for lunch:

Three tacos and a pile of chips with salsa, queso, and guacamole, with a bunch of hot sauces. This place is so much fun.

Then I found myself in the Chinese grocery store, and I’m really mad I didn’t get some shots of all the interesting things I found 😦 I only took this one picture of the “candy” (if you could call it that), I got:

This candy is the flavor of the Asian fruit “durian”. The lovely cashier did warn me that durian has a “pungent” flavor. I would describe it more as the flavor of dirty socks. I literally spit it out! Awful…and stinky, yuck!

To continue the Chinese theme, dinner was take out:

Egg drop soup (my first time trying…Not a fan), Hunan chicken (yum), and steamed dumplings (my favorite). What a great Saturday!

Sunday was more greatness. Coffee, grapes, and a copy of Whole Living magazine for breakfast. Then an early afternoon workout, followed by a small bowl of instant oatmeal for second breakfast? Then to hang out with my family for Father’s Day. I love hanging out with my loves:

She is fascinated by airplanes.

Did I mention there was ice cream cake?
And a bunch of other goodies:

Turkey burgers, and a nibble of regular burger and hot dog, baked beans, chips, corn,potato salad, watermelon, and tomato.

And grilled pineapple. And everything was delicious. Thanks mom!

That wraps up a wonderful weekend. This is a busy week. A lot of appointments with brides and getting ready to attend a wedding this weekend. It will be fun to be a guest for a change!

Grilled Southwest Style Chicken

I love when inspiration hits. It’s not something you have to think too hard at. It just shows up in your brain effortlessly. I wish I could tell you the secret to finding inspiration. I think for me, it has to do with keeping an open mind and having an “inspiration piece”, which is one item that you can build on. I used this method when I was an interior decorator. I would use a great piece of art work or a fabric and build an entire room from that piece.

Dinner last night was an impromptu Grilled Southwest Style Chicken, at my sister’s house, inspired by a bottle of spicy ranch dressing.

I grilled the chicken for 8 minutes on one side, flipped and spread a little of the spicy ranch dressing on it. Cooked for another 10 minutes, flipped and put on a little more dressing and some cheese, cooked for 2 more minutes.

I served it over some Uncle Ben’s Spanish style rice, which was sprinkled with corn. I topped the chicken with a little salsa and sour cream, and served a salad with tomatoes on the side. It was really good. Even these adorable babies ate some:

I love them.

That was yesterday’s dinner. For today’s eats:

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