end of the week lunchbox meal

What do you get when you’re trying to clean out your fridge for Friday’s lunch because you know you’ll be eating out all weekend? A very random assortment of thrown-together sampler-sized dishes!

My friend is coming to Raleigh for his spring break…and St. Patty’s Day! I know we’re going to be grabbing dinner out {I need to introduce him to Raleigh Times pork nachos!}, as well as probably brunch and late night snacks 🙂

Sooo I was determined to clear out my fridge. Several things went into the freezer, several stayed put for next week, and most went into my motley lunch.

Cherry tomatoes and carrots with ranch dipping sauce

A mini marinated caprese salad

An Italian sausage sauteed with onions and peppers, drenched in Buffalo sauce, and served with potato wedges

A small cup of South African Smoke tomato leek soup {recipe to come!}


Wondering what this South African Smoke thing I keep referring to is? Another Trader Joe’s gem, just like 21 Seasoning Salute! It’s a very well-priced seasoning grinder that, according to the link, “begins with African-grown paprika that is slow-smoked for 48 hours over a sustainable African hardwood called Acacia Saligna, commonly used as barbecue coals. This process enriches the paprika with a smoky, roasted flavor that evokes the South African braai, or barbecue.” It also contains sea salt, garlic and basil.

Image credit

Photo credits 1, 2, 3, 4


an ode to sausages + a review

My sister mentioned that she wanted to eat more protein, so I mentioned that chicken sausages are a good option- which reminded me of one company’s superior social media strategy.

Awhile back, I tweeted this:

And got back this response from Al Fresco, an all-natural sausage company:

Notice that they didn’t say “Next time make it with Al Fresco gourmet sausages.” Just a simple, friendly acknowledgment of my great recipe- but now I associate their company name with sausage recipes. Genius, right?

Because I respect and admire a company with an interactive social media presence, I decided to give their sausages a taste. I bought the buffalo style ones, which are “tangy with medium heat” and gluten-free! Yum- everyone knows my obsession with buffalo. I sauteed the sausage with onions and peppers, placed it on top of gluten-free bread, and drizzled it with Frank’s Red Hot Buffalo Sauce. The only thing missing? Ranch!

Photo credit

So kudos to Al Fresco- you’ve gained a loyal customer from Twitter {see guys? It is important in business}.

For more sausage recipes, check out:

the butternut squash is back

photo credit: thatisyummy.wordpress.com

Or, as they would say on Friends, squatter nut bash.

The delicious recipes I’ve tried:

And the ones I can’t wait to try:

And especially:

and also…

{aka “my new life, continued”}

browsing home decor stores

finding out about a youth entrepreneurship camp…maybe they need volunteers?!

whipping up an amazing sun-dried tomato sausage pasta (recipe to come)

finding this $20 steal, soon to be painted white or stained brown

losing several items when the back of my uhaul popped open mid-drive

an evening of tennis

a new friend to bike with

ridiculously hilarious moments with my sister