Old-fashioned things make me happy

Yes, I have a penchant for old-fashioned, retro, nostalgic, vintage or whatever you want to call them thingies. Here’s a  tour of SOME of the things that make me happy, make me smile, and make my heart go pitter patter just a little faster:

1) Vintage/retro aprons.

Gosh darn, I love ’em. I love to cook and I love cute little aprons. They make me feel official, like Betty freaking Crocker…..not to mention the cute appeal. I hope to have an amazing apron collection one day. Here’s an apron that I have my eye on for Fall. Oh so adorable.


2) Old Movies. 

As a little girl,  I was completely mesmerized by films such as Roman Holiday, Sabrina, Casablanca, It’s a Wonderful Life, Miracle on 34th Street, Breakfast at Tiffany’s.  <Sigh> I would like to thank these films for my life-long, unrealistic expectations in the romance department. “Louis, I think this is the beginning of a beautiful friendship.”


3) Retro Cookbooks. This is another collection I’m working on. I’d love to have a HUGE bookshelf in my kitchen filled with old, vintage cookbooks. That would be so cool.


4) Old-fashioned candy stores. Need I say more.


5) Claw foot tubs


6) Old-fashioned diners. 

 It probably comes as no surprise that my favorite show on the Food Network is “Diners, Drive-ins, and Dives”.


7) And I want one of these…


Or maybe this one…



I could go on and on but I won’t torture you any longer. So, there you have it….it’s official…I was born about 40 years too late.

I will leave you with a song by one  my favorite singers…just seems appropriate for this post.


Steph’s Scrumptious Chicken Enchiladas

Ooooh, these are so very good!!! I tweaked this from a wonderful recipe that I found online a few months ago. I have made a few adjustments here and there and I think they are just about perfect. I will warn you…it’s a time-consuming recipe, with quite a few steps, but it is NOT difficult and is well worth the effort!! They are so yummy.

RECIPE: Chicken Enchiladas

Serves 5.


Evil. Pure, unadulterated, delicious evil. haha


2 pounds boneless,skinless chicken breast – cut into chunks
1 (10.75 ounce) can condensed cream of
chicken soup
1 1/4 cups sour cream
1/4 teaspoon chili powder
1 tablespoon butter
1 small onion, chopped
1 (4 ounce) can chopped green chilies,
1 (1.25 ounce) package mild taco seasoning
1 bunch green onions, chopped, divided
1 cup water
1 teaspoon lime juice
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teasoon cayenne (optional)
1/2 cup canola oil
10-12 corn tortillas (not flour tortillas)
3 cups Cheddar cheese, shredded, divided
1 (10 ounce) can enchilada sauce
1 (6 ounce) can sliced black olives (optional)
1. Place the chicken in a large pot and add water to cover. Bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce the heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer until the chicken pieces are no longer pink, about 15 minutes. Shred chicken by placing two forks back to back and pulling meat apart. Set the shredded chicken aside. Meanwhile, combine the cream of chicken soup, sour cream, and chili powder in a saucepan. Bring to a simmer over low heat, stirring occasionally, then turn off the heat and cover to keep warm.


Heat the butter in a skillet over medium heat. Stir in the onion; cook and stir until the onion has softened and turned translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the shredded chicken, chopped green chilies, taco seasoning, half of the bunch of chopped green onion, and water. Allow to simmer for 10 minutes. Stir in the lime juice, onion powder, garlic powder, and cayenne; simmer for an additional 10 minutes.Meanwhile, heat the canola oil in a small frying pan over medium high heat. Once oil is hot, place one corn tortilla in oil for a few seconds until golden brown and flip over for a few more seconds. Remove and set aside on a plate and pat with paper towels. Repeat with all the corn tortillas. Note: watch the tortillas carefully because they will brown quickly and you don’t want to over cook them (you want to still be able to bend them).
3. Preheat an oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Stir 1 cup of the soup mixture into the skillet with the chicken mixture. Spread the remaining soup mixture on the bottom of a 9×13 inch baking dish.
4. Fill each tortilla with chicken mixture. Sprinkle Cheddar cheese over the chicken filling before folding the tortillas, reserving half of the shredded cheese for topping the enchiladas. Fold tortillas over the filling and place seam-side down in the prepared pan.
5. Pour enchilada sauce evenly over the enchiladas. Cover with the remaining 1 1/2 cups of Cheddar cheese. Sprinkle the reserved chopped green onions and the sliced olives on top of the cheese. Bake in the preheated oven until filling is heated through and the cheese is melted and bubbling, about 30 minutes.

Grilled Sesame Flank Steak

Ah, I love the aroma of an asian marinade….soooo amazing.
RECIPE: Grilled Sesame Flank Steak
Serves 4.
1-1/2 lb. flank steak
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon soy sauce
2 tablespoons canola oil (plus more for the grill)
1/4 cup minced fresh ginger
1-1/2 tablespoon minced garlic
3 tablespoons rice vinegar
2 tablespoons Asian sesame oil
1-1/2 tablespoons light brown sugar
2 teaspoon cornstarch
1 tablespoon sesame seeds, toasted


1. Season the flank steak with 1 tsp. of the salt and  pepper. Mix 1 Tbs. of the soy sauce, 1 Tbs. of the canola oil, 2 Tbs. of the ginger, and 1 Tbs. of the garlic in a large zip-top plastic bag. Add the steak and turn and massage it in the bag to cover it with the marinade. Refrigerate for at least 4 hours or overnight (my preference).

2. Heat 1 Tbs. of the canola oil and the remaining 2 Tbs. ginger and 1/2 Tbs. garlic in a small saucepan over medium heat until the ginger and garlic sizzle  and just begin to brown around the edges (about 3 minutes). Add 1/3 cup water, the remaining 1/4 cup soy sauce, and the rice vinegar, sesame oil, and brown sugar. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. In a small bowl, whisk the cornstarch with 2 tsp. of water and stir it into the soy mixture. Cook until it returns to a boil and thickens slightly, about 1 min. Remove from the heat and set aside.

3. Heat a gas grill to medium high.  

4. Clean and oil the grill grates. Grill the steak,covered, until it has good grill marks, 5 to 6 min. Flip and reduce the heat to medium. Cook, covered, until the steak is done to your liking, 4 to 5 minutes for medium rare (cut into the steak to check). Transfer to a large cutting board, brush with about a third of the sesame sauce, and let rest for 5 minutes.

5. Slice the steak thinly and serve with a drizzle of the remaining sesame sauce, and a sprinkling of sesame seeds.



I’m Back!

I know, I know, I haven’t posted  in a while! Yep, call me a slacker! Ok, I’ll admit it…I’ve been stuck in a rut lately.  A big contemplating-my-future-what-the-heck-do-I-want-out-of-life type rut.  To be honest, after weeks of pondering, I still don’t have it all quite figured out but I’ve done a lot of soul searching and I think I’m getting closer. I hope.