My absolute favorite pizza is Margherita Pizza – it is just the pure basics: Thin crust, slices of ripe plum tomatoes, mozzarella cheese, balsamic vinegar. So when I saw this recipe for Meatless Monday on MyRecipes.com, I knew I had to share it! This recipe is so simple, it is perfect to put your kids in charge, with an assist from you!
- 1 (10-ounce) can refrigerated pizza crust dough
- Cooking spray
- 1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil, divided
- 1 garlic clove, halved
- 5 plum tomatoes, thinly sliced (about 3/4 pound)
- 1 cup (4 ounces) shredded fresh mozzarella cheese
- 1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
- 1/2 cup thinly sliced fresh basil
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 1/8 teaspoon black pepper
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Unroll crust onto a baking sheet coated with cooking spray; pat into a 13×11-inch rectangle.
Bake at 400 degrees for 8 minutes.
Remove crust from oven, and brush with 1/2 teaspoon oil. Rub crust with cut sides of garlic.
Arrange tomato slices on crust, leaving a 1/2-inch border; sprinkle evenly with cheese. Bake at 400° for 12 minutes or until cheese melts and crust is golden.
Combine 1/2 teaspoon oil and vinegar, stirring with a whisk.
Sprinkle pizza evenly with sliced basil, salt, and pepper. Drizzle the vinegar mixture evenly over the pizza. Cut pizza into 8 pieces. Enjoy!
(Originated from Cooking Light, December 2002)
Everyone loves summer, and with the first official weekend of summer approaching, it is time to break out those blenders and shakers! Simple Solutions Diva has gathered some favorites together for your cocktail menu consideration!
- 6 Mint leaves
- .75 oz Simple syrup (one part water, one part sugar, boiled until thickened. Cool for use)
- .75 oz Fresh lime juice
- 1.5 oz White rum
- 1.5 oz Club soda
- Mint Sprig Garnish
In a shaker, lightly muddle the mint. Add the simple syrup, lime juice and rum, and fill with ice. Shake well and pour (unstrained) into a highball glass. Top with the club soda and garnish with a mint sprig.
Recipe Credit: Liquor.com
Margaritas By The Pitcher
- 10 oz Fresh lime juice
- 14 oz Cointreau (orange flavored liquor)
- 3.5 oz Agave syrup or simple syrup
- 22 oz Tequila
- Lime Wedge Garnish
For this recipe you need a 52-ounce pitcher. First, add the fresh lime juice and then the Cointreau. Have a taste—it should still be a bit tart. You can add a little more Cointreau but not much.
Adjust the sweetness with a little agave syrup (two parts agave nectar, one part water) or simple syrup (one part sugar, one part water) but don’t use more Cointreau, which would change the balance of the drink.
Add the tequila and taste. The mixture should still be intense, because you haven’t added any ice yet.
When a guest wants a drink, pour 3 ounces of the mix into a shaker and fill with ice. Shake, and strain into a stemmed Margarita or cocktail glass with a half-salted rim or a rocks glass filled with fresh ice.
Garnish with a thin wheel of lime. If you have a large shaker or a gallon jar with a screw-top you can shake a whole bunch of drinks at the same time.
Recipe Credit: Liquor.com
- Juice of 2 limes
- 2 teaspoons sugar
- 16 ripe strawberries, cut in half
- 1/2 teaspoon aged balsamic vinegar
- 4 ounces Grand Marnier
- 4 ounces premium vodka
- 8 ounces California Pinot Noir
Combine the lime juice and sugar in a small heavy-bottom saucepan. Bring to a simmer over medium heat, then immediately reduce the heat to very low and simmer about 1 minute. Remove from the heat and set aside.
Divide the strawberries among 4 old-fashioned glasses. Sprinkle equal amounts of balsamic vinegar over them (it’ll be just a few drops in each, about one-eighth teaspoon). Divide the Grand Marnier among them, and muddle the ingredients in each glass.
Fill each glass about two-thirds full with ice, then pour equal amounts vodka over the ice in each. Add one-half ounce of the simmered lime juice to each glass. Pour equal amounts of the wine into each glass, then stir gently and serve.
Recipe Credit: Recipe Adapted by LA Times from bar chef Albert Trummer at Fraîche.
I LOVE asparagus! And grilling it just makes it that much better to my taste buds. You can use the oil mixture in this recipe for any vegetables you would like to grill; adjust the timing based on the thickness of the veggie!
16 stalks fresh asparagus (no canned allowed)
3 tablespoons olive oil
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon each of the following (omit what you don’t like!): Black pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, paprika (I used smoked paprika), and chipotle powder.
1 small block of Parmigiano-Reggiano (enough to get 20-30 slivers of shaved cheese)
1 tablespoon good quality balsamic vinegar (I used a fig-infused balsamic in mine.)
3 tablespoons of crumbled, cooked prosciutto (optional)
Remove dried ends of asparagus. Wash and dry asparagus and place into a large, gallon-sized, plastic baggie.
In a separate bowl, combine the olive oil, kosher salt and the ¼ teaspoons of all the spices. Pour the oil mixture into the plastic bag with the asparagus. Seal bag and coat asparagus with oil mixture. Set aside until ready to grill.
Heat grill and use either a veggie grill tray or a large disposable tin foil tray, to prevent the vegetables from falling into the grill. Once heated, add the asparagus to the tray and grill until cooked to your preference.
Remove asparagus to a serving platter. Drizzle with balsamic vinegar, cheese shavings, and crumbled prosciutto. Serve immediately.
Serves two adults (my kids won’t touch it, so more for me! Yay!)
To find a veggie grill tray, Click Here: Vegetable Grill Tray
Going crazy trying to find the right gift for Mom on Mother’s Day? Stay away from store bought gifts and lean towards more meaningful family time with her, says an informal poll by SimpleSolutionsDiva.com.
SimpleSolutionsDiva.com, the site for simple solutions and ideas for the home, kitchen, garden and more, asked Facebook followers one question:
What would be your IDEAL Mother’s Day Gift to receive? (Just pretend you could have anything without feeling guilty!) Answer Options Were:
- A Store Bought Gift
- A Homemade/Child-made gift
- A Family Experience (like a family outing or Brunch/Dinner out)
- A Personal Service (like a mani/pedi or spa treatment)
- A Day To Yourself (To do whatever YOU want)
Out of 51 responses, 22 people responded Family Experience, with Personal Service a close second, with 17 responses. A Day To Yourself came in at 7 responses, with Homemade/Child-made gift sneaking in 5 responses.
Highlighting, perhaps, the fact that Moms value time, relationships and rest, absolutely no one selected A Store Bought Gift. Far from a scientific poll, the results did offer some fun personal comments from moms:
“A big honkin’ gift card so I could buy all the other things on the list (and the day to myself to spend it)!!!!!”
“I believe I would enjoy the Spa treatment deal since my eye brows now look like caterpillars.”
“I would like a maid, personal chef, nanny, and a driver. Is that too much to ask?”
“Cards and gifts were fun when the kids were little. Now I’d like a day to work on mini/dollhouse projects.”
“When my kids were little I would have cherished the homemade gift, but now that they are much older, and I work full-time plus some, I would love a day to just BE.”
Join Laura Morey, your Simple Solutions Diva, each week on Saturday where she features a new video highlighting simple ideas, recipes, or products that can make life easier. “Keep it simple, make life easier, and enjoy your time.”
I am always looking for simple recipes for foods I know I love. In my book, there is nothing better than apples and brie together. So when I found this recipe on the website, Kasey’s Kitchen, I knew I had to include it! I know it will make SimpleSolutionsDiva.com’s Simple Holiday Survival Video Series in November 2013! It also would be a great little appetizer for kids to make and serve for a Mother’s Day Brunch (with help from an adult, of course!)!
- 1 Green Apple (I love Granny Smith), thinly sliced
- 1 small brie round, sliced into thin wedges
- 1 roll of crescent rolls
- 1/2 sweet vidalia onion, thinly sliced
- brown sugar
- cooking spray
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Saute onions in cooking spray until translucent. Add a sprinkle of brown sugar and set aside.
Roll out crescent dough, separate into pieces (it is usually perforated for you).
Lay 2 slices of apple, 1 slice/wedge of brie and small spoonful of onion mixture onto dough and roll it up.
Place onto lightly greased cookie sheet and bake for 10-12 minutes, until golden brown.
Serve on their own, or try it with a dab of cranberry relish! Enjoy!
Yes, I know, it may be a tad too early to be dreaming of the beach (not in Florida, but i don’t want to make anyone jealous!), but I found these cool little cup/beverage holders that would be perfect for the beach!
They are called TurtleBacks, and they are nifty little plastic beverage holders that nestle into the sand. Prevents beverages from tipping over PLUS you don’t get sand all over the cup or bottle!
The products start at $5.00 (for a plain one), $6.00 with a symbol (like the orange one above), and for $10.00 you can even have them customized with a logo or saying (50th Birthday Party Anyone?)! Perfect way to enjoy your summer at the beach!
I LOVE Thai food, especially Pad Thai, but I never try to make it at home. Well, now I have a recipe that is easy and I’m going to try out! It is from Kasey’s Kitchen website (a very cute website worth checking out!). Hope you enjoy it, too!
- 2 Chicken Breasts, ground or chopped
- 1 Package Rice Noodles or Thai Noodles (Kasey used Nasoya’s Pasta Zero noodles)
- 1 Egg, scrambled
- 1 Tbs. Peanut Butter
- 1 Tbs. soy sauce
- Dash of sweet chili sauce (optional)
- frozen edamame
- green onions, chopped
Cook the chicken through in a little wok oil or coconut oil. Cook your noodles according to their package directions and set aside. You want them to dry out a little bit before adding them into your dish.
Add in your scrambled egg and let it cook with the chicken.
Add peanut butter, soy sauce and a drizzle of honey for the chicken and eggs. Mix thoroughly and then add a bit of water to thin out the sauce. At this point, throw in the edamame and let simmer.
Add in noodles and a little sweet chili sauce if you would like.
Pile high in a large dish, top with sliced green onions
We love our pets, and Simple Solutions Diva has been on the lookout for great solutions for our pets. Here The Diva’s Round Up For Popular Pet Products, starting with the dogs in your life (Click on photos for product information):
A squeaker Toy with an On/Off Switch! How many times do you wish you could make your dog’s favorite toy stop squeaking? Well this is the toy for you! From dog toy maker, Kong, this squeaker can be turned off when you want it off! Click the photo to the left to see where to get the toy.
Fido A Fast Eater? Slow Him Down With This Bowl - This food bowl design will get your pup to slow down at mealtime, instead of gulping or inhaling food. Prevent Bloat, the second leading killer of dogs in the U.S., behind cancer.
Car Covered In Canine Fur? This is the simplest solution, yet! Surefit, the slipcover company, offers this reversible pet cargo mat. Fido enjoys the back of the car, and you are happy to keep the fur to a minimum!
Surf’s Up For Fido - Enjoy spending time with your pup by the pool? Give her a place to lay down that’s not overheated by the sun. This doggie bed is from Frontgate Catalog, and is a perfect item to place by the pool.
Challenge Your Kitty With Catnip – The Four PawsSuper Catnip Crazy Pants has catnip sewn into the INSIDE of the pants. A sure fire way to entertain your kitty AND you!
Fun For Your Feline Friend – The Twitch, Interactive Cat Teaser Toy will keep your feisty feline entertained for hours!
A Cool Place To Chill - We all know how our cats LOVE to sleep in sinks. Well now, you can give your furry friend a cool place to lay down and not have to share your bathroom sink!