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I flew out to Tennessee last weekend and stayed for the first little snow (2-4 inches was nothing!), but just missed Jonas. The boys were snowed in and apparently Carl is a regular old snow dog! This boy could have survived Alaska!

Before I left Tennessee, I made this slow cooker chili for Q. It is one of my favorite cold weather meals. I probably make it once a week during the winter months. Who doesn’t love a warm pot of chili on a cold day? I love the ease of the slow cooker (dump it and forget it), and how easily this recipe freezes and reheats (hello next week’s lunches). Feel free to add another can or two of beans (Q likes light beans) and even more chicken broth if you like a more broth-y soup. The slow cooker accounts for changes and additions and the chili will still turn out great!

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Snowed-In Slow Cooker Turkey Chili

Serves 6-8

Ingredients:

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 clove of garlic, chopped
  • 1 pound lean ground turkey
  • 1 14.5 ounce can diced tomatoes in juice
  • 1 15-ounce can black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 15-ounce can pinto beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons cumin
  • Salt
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • Lime slices
  • Avocado
  • Sour cream or Greek yogurt
  • Mexican cheese

Directions:

  1. In a medium, heavy-bottomed pot (like a Le Creuset), heat 1/2 tablespoon olive oil over medium-high heat until hot. Stir in the onion, sprinkle a pinch of salt and a grind of fresh pepper over the top, and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onion is softened, about 5 minutes. Stir in the garlic and cook until aromatic, about 1 minute. Add to the slow cooker.
  2. Pour remaining 1/2 tablespoon olive oil into the skillet. Add the turkey, pinch of salt and freshly ground pepper, and cook until brown, 4 to 6 minutes, breaking up the turkey with a wooden spoon as it cooks. (The turkey doesn’t have to be fully cooked, since it will finish cooking in the slow cooker, just browned). Add to the slow cooker.
  3. Pour the canned tomatoes, black beans, pinto beans, and chicken broth into the slow cooker. Add the chili powder and cumin. Add a pinch of salt and a few grinds of fresh pepper. Stir and cover. Cook on high for 3-4 hours. Serve over brown rice and top with a squeeze of fresh lime, avocado, sour cream and a sprinkle of cheese.

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Before Q and I took off for London, we spent a weekend in San Francisco. Well technically we spent 24 hours in San Francisco. Q and I both are big mileage status people aka we like our airline status! Q was going to be short 960 miles if he didn’t take a last minute trip, so we decided San Fran it would be. We took it as an opportunity to visit my aunt, uncle and cousin who live there. We had fun drinks and then a delicious dinner at Wayfare Tavern (highly recommended PS).

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My New Year’s Day treat is always a burger from In N Out. I hardly ever eat red meat, so this is my once a year burger. And I love every minute of it, and then don’t want to eat another burger until next New Years.

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I’m more of a seafood girl, you know what I mean?

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PS this is not a great photo, but the new portobello mushroom salad at Sweetgreen is to die for. Their winter menu is on point.

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I woke up to 60 degrees this morning and Q and Carl woke up to SNOW! Carl actually tolerates the snow quite well, what a trooper!

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I attended a bridal shower this weekend and wore one of my favorite dresses (Kate Spade) with some fun leopard heels (Jessica Simpson).

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London Town

by Koko on January 5, 2016 · 0 comments

in Travel, Uncategorized

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This Christmas, Q and I took a trip over the pond to visit his mom in London! A little known fact about me: I studied abroad in London for 6 months while I was in college, so I have a real affinity for it. We spent just under a week exploring and loved every minute of it. Although much of London was closed during the holidays (they sure do love a good holiday break), we still managed to fit a ton in our short stay.

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We went up The Shard (the tallest building in the UK), rode the London Eye (great views of the city), we ate Indian on Curry Mile (the best Indian), and went to Winter Wonderland in Hyde Park (basically one huge carnival). We got the chance to eat at one of my favorite cookbook author’s restaurants, Ottolenghi, and even saw Star Wars on Christmas Day. We saw a play (The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night), which was fabulous, and ate noodles at Wagamama. We explored the local pub and enjoyed a few pints with the locals (they even allow dogs inside).

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Q’s mom loves in a great neighborhood outside of town called Woolwich Arsenal, which is where the British used to keep and manufacture weapons. It is made up of beautiful old buildings and the area still has canons and old war memorabilia around.

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Ottolenghi, one of my favorite cookbook author’s, has a fabulous restaurant in the East End. It reminds me of Joan’s on Third in LA, lots of salads and side dishes. It’s mainly vegetarian, and the food was fabulous!

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Winter Wonderland in Hyde Park was an absolute blast. There were carnival games, rides, tons of food and drinks. We spent a good 4 hours there and could have stayed all day. Definitely a highlight of the trip.

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Overall, a fantastic trip where we fit in SO much and got to spend some much needed time together!

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Cowboy Cookies

by Koko on December 16, 2015 · 2 comments

in Baking, Recipe

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Every year for the last 5 years I’ve participated in the Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap. I make 3 dozen cookies and I receive 3 dozen in return. It’s always a blast to see what cookies I get and I always try to make something new to give away. I’ve done Chewy Ginger Molasses Cookies, Coconut Macaroons, Black & Whites,  Glazed Butter Cookies and this year Cowboy Cookies!

I love Cowboy Cookies because they are super easy to make with ingredients you normally have on hand. They are sweet, chewy and have a great texture thanks to the addition of oatmeal.

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