Cooking With The Undomestic Housewife

SImple but good recipes with a hint of fun facts and nutrition info.

Be-quinoa your day right!! June 17, 2013

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           I have only recently been introduced to Quinoa, but with it’s low-fat, high protein qualities, I have been leaning towards using it more in my everyday life. It’s easier to cook than rice, yet has the same texture and flavor. I have also put it in granola, uncooked. It had the texture and flavor of sesame seeds. I love it. It also keeps me full longer than oatmeal or cream of wheat, mostly because it doesn’t make your blood-sugar spike.

It’s earthy, organic flavor gave me the idea of replacing oats with quinoa; cooking it with milk and adding fruit and cinnamon etc. My next venture will be a Quinoa-pudding, instead of rice pudding.

here’s the recipe. It’s a good weekend breakfast: unless you have about 20 minutes in the morning– then it’s for your everyday. You can also make it ahead of time and put it in the refrigerator.

Ingredients: Serves 2

  • 1/2 Cup raw Quinoa
  • 1 1/4 Cup (skim) milk
  • 1 Tbsp Brown sugar
  • Tsp cinnamon (optional)
  • 1/4 sliced almonds (optional)
  • 1/4 Cup unsweetened Coconut (optional)

You will need:

  • Measuring cups
  • Saucepan (with lid)
  • Spoon

Getting Started:

  • Add the quinoa, brown sugar and milk together in the saucepan, bring to a boil. (Make sure to keep an eye on it though because the milk will overflow if it boils to long.
  • Once boiling, cover the pot & turn the oven to ‘Lo’ or about ‘1’ on the dial and let sit for about 15 min.
  • After 15 min, check the consistency to make sure it’s not too watery still. If it is, let cook longer.
  • You can toss in any additives at this point: Ie. nuts, coconut, dried fruit, cinnamon etc.
  • Wait a couple min and once it has the consistency of oatmeal, it’s done.

I added a scoop of yogurt and banana to mine, but it would be amazing with berries of some kind as well.

Serve warm & sprinkle with love.

Enjoy, Kristi

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Cranberry-Orange scones– Take that Starbucks! You can keep your 490 calories! June 24, 2012

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YUM

When I worked at Starbucks, my absolute favorite thing was setting up the food case in the am. There was a high chance that there was at least 1 cranberry orange scone that was broken upon arrival to the store. And what that means is that it can’t be served to any customer, so we would mark it out and I would eat it. Despite knowing it was 490 calories and god-knows how much sugar/fat, I would devour the entire thing with no remorse or guilt. I’m not sure how they even got 490 calories into that small scone (which, by the way, won’t keep you full for more than an hour), without making it with pure sugar and lard.

I swore to myself that one day I would make a replacement that I was sure would cut the calories (hopefully) in 1/2– or at least make it a little more guilt-free.

And my friends, I think I have found it! Made with dried orange-flavored cranberries, orange zest & juice, mostly whole-wheat flour and Chia seeds, which (I have talked about HERE) are so amazing for you and a great substitute for poppy seeds in cooking/baking.

This is a very versatile recipe: you can (and I have) substitute the ‘flavor ingredients’ (ie. the cranberries & zest) for things like blueberries and white chocolate chips, or raspberries and chocolate chips etc. The possibilities are endless. BUT, if you are going to use a fresh berry, it’s best to make the dough as per normal, but then FOLD in the berries, so you’re not crushing them with the mixer. If you want to mix them in, that’s fine too, but I personally like biting into a piece of scone and getting a mouthful of full berry.

These little gems don’t really need anymore introduction, so without futher adieu, here’s the recipe.

You will need:

  • large Mixing bowl for dry ingredients & a smaller one for the eggs (if you have a mixer, you can use the mixer bowl as the ‘dry’ ingredient bowl).
  • a fork or whisk
  • measuring utensils
  • a knife &/or dough cutter (Technical term?)
  • a grater or zester
  • a cookie sheet (you can spray it, or grease it if you want)

Ingredients (Makes about 8 scones– just depends on the size you cut them):

  • 2.5 cups of Flour; you can use any ratio of whole wheat/ All purpose flour.
  • 2 Tbsp Baking POWDER
  • 1/2 tsp Baking SODA (**try not to get powder and soda mixed up)
  •  pinch of salt
  • 2 Tbsp Sugar (you can either substitute honey(add to ‘wet’ ingredient list), or use brown sugar)
  • 1+ Tbsp chia seeds
  • 1/2+ cup dried cranberries (I used orange-flavored dried cranberries from Sprouts)
  • Zest of 1 orange

filling: Tbsp any kind of jam (I used strawberry, because that’s what I had)

Icing:

  • Mix some of the orange juice (no more than a tbsp or 2) with some zest and powdered sugar until you get the consistency you want. Don’t make it too runny or it won’t stiffen and it will soak into the scone and get everywhere (I made this mistake), so add lots of powdered sugar.

Getting started:

  1. Pre-heat oven to about 375-400 degrees.
  2. Combine all your dry ingredients in the bowl specified
  3. Cut-in the butter with a potato masher (if you don’t have the actual tool for this). Your dough should be a bit crumbly and stuck together at this point.
  4. Beat all your ‘wet’ ingredients together in the smaller bowl.
  5. Add wet ingredients to dry ones and mix together until fully combined. *if you’re using a  mixer, use your dough hook (the one that your husband/boyfriend uses to pretend he’s Captain Hook.)

    dough ball

  6. Once the dough has formed into a ball-shape, flour a surface to dump the dough on to.
  7. knead the dough a couple times and then press into a circle about 1.5 inches thick.
  8. Spread the jam into a thin layer on the circle (don’t take note by mine (below)– I spread a lot and this caused the scones to slip and slide apart while baking)

This is NOT a thin layer *don’t do this!*

9. fold the circle in 1/2 and then slice into triangles. These will grow quite a bit in the oven, so they can be rather small triangles. You should be able to get at least 8 scones out of this.– if you need to pull it a bit longer, go ahead.

Fold in 1/2

10. Place on your baking sheet at least 1-1.5 inches apart and Bake for about 15 minutes, or until golden brown on top.

11. Once cooled, mix up your icing and drizzle over the top of all the scones, sprinkle with love and ENJOY!

~K

 

Free the fat! Pistachio mousse aka. ‘The Satisfier’! April 26, 2012

Filed under: dessert,easy,health,less fat,lifestyle,recipe,treats,undomestic — Kristi bri @ 7:01 pm
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Fat Free Pistachio Pudding

Fat Free Pistachio Pudding

My father in Law loves Pistachio ice cream. I personally, thought that it was one of those ice cream flavors like chocolate-dipped, salted ruffle chip; or like the Harry Potter Jelly beans: good enough to buy and share with 4 people to have a laugh, but not good enough to keep a Costco-sized container in your home. And the small nuts; it’s like they ground them just fine enough so that you can see specks of crunch, but not big enough to actually get your teeth around.  And the flavor: Pistachio? Really? Is that supposed to be the ‘gluten-free’ of Hazelnut/almond pudding?
With this logic, I figured the fad of Pistachio pudding would fade as well. But to be honest: I never buy pudding, so it didn’t much matter to me. Nor did I really think about how it’s probably been out since before i was born. I did, though, at one point have an inkling to buy some chocolate pudding once to make pudding shots– YES, I said Pudding shots; not Jello shots. They are amazing and I won’t get in to the musings of my weekends at this moment (but seriously…we’ll save that for another adult post).

I then saw that a pregnant friend of mine was satisfying some of her cravings with this rogue pudding, but what caught my eye was not that someone was actually eating it willingly (never-mind the pregnancy part), but  the words: “Sugar and fat free”.
***Ding, ding, ding***, I’m pretty sure that sound went off in my head, along with “perfect low-fat after dinner sweet-satisfier!” in Bob Barker’s Host’s fancy voice. And it’s a heck of a lot better than the ice cream I was consuming at 200+ calories. I needed to try it; maybe it wasn’t so bad after all.
When I made it like this (below), I fell in love instantly. Now it’s like the unsuspecting cool-kid; I’m like “what? Pistachio? Psshhht, we go way back!”.

Any of JELL-O’s Sugar-free, Fat-Free puddings have only 100 calories per…wait for it….drum-roll…BOX. That means if you follow the instructions to a T: fat-free milk and all, you can eat the entire box and only gain 100 calories and 0 grams of fat!
Unfortunately, this recipe is not followed to a T, but there’s not much more to worry about .

There’s also other flavors in this magical fatless dessert, such as: Chocolate, Vanilla, White chocolate, and Creamcheese (these are the only ones I remember for sure).
My favorite part is where you use less milk than required (as on the box)– about 1/2 in fact, maybe a little more. The consistency will be much thicker and more gelatinous ( I hate that word ‘gelatinous’ it reminds me of when chicken fat solidifies…).

Having quick company, or just lazy? Layer any of these flavors with some ground up graham crackers, or vanilla wafers and some fruit and you have yourself an awesome low-fat dessert for even the pickiest bunch.
I made the White chocolate flavor with the recipe below and added it to a graham-cracker pie crust I acquired from the dollar store with some sliced strawberries sprinkled about. My husband ate the whole thing! And it only cost about $2.00 to boot!

Wanna add just a few more calories? Mix  a little real cream cheese with the cream cheese pudding (using the 1/2 milk recipe), add to a graham cracker crust and you have probably just cut the calories from 1400 cal cheese cake  to 200 or less cal cheesecake!

Tangent-to-tangent and back to the beginning; here is the recipe for the Pistachio (or any other flavor) Pudding/Mousse:

Need:

  • Small mixing bowl (or large soup bowl)
  • Hand/stand mixer or whisk (depending how much you feel like cleaning)– a fork will work too.
Ingredients: Serves about 6 depending how you serve it (ie. with fruit/cookie crumbs or not.
  • Your choice of pudding flavor (I recommend the Pistachio).
  • 3/4-1 cup of Milk– Obviously Fat-free has less fat than the rest. But as per the box: “Pudding will not set with soy milk.” I don’t know about coconut or almond.
  • 3/4-1 cup Cool whip (again: obviously low-fat has less fat)
To do:
  1. Put the cold milk into the bowl you want to use,
  2. Sprinkle the contents of the pouch over the milk while mixing. If you’re using a fork to try and whisk this, only add small, evenly spread sprinkles at a time. It thickens very quickly, so, unless you have the wrist of a porn star, just dumping and stirring will create more clumps. **I apologize if you are a pudding eater and make pudding regularily: you will already know all this. I am still just an ignorant  ‘grasshoppa” when it comes to this.
  3. Once you’re done stirring, but it’s not completely set, scoop a huge dollop of Cool-Whip into the bowl and mix (keep in mind: too much Cool-Whip will take away from the flavor.
  4. Stick it in the fridge to let it set, or put into the serving dishes with accouterments or pie crust then let set.
When you’re ready to eat (at least 5 minutes later), either eat out of the pre-prepared dishes, or scoop out of the mass-produced bowl– or just eat straight out of the bowl.
But don’t forget to sprinkle with love and enjoy!~
 

When The Pineapple Became A Veggie. April 3, 2012

Filed under: chicken,cooking,easy,food,Fooooood!,health,lifestyle,recipe — Kristi bri @ 7:46 pm
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Pineapple, chicken and wild rice.

First off, let me apologize for the quality of this photo; yes it was taken in a tupperware, on it’s journey to becoming leftovers. I did not think to take a photo, because honestly, I didn’t think it would be all that great. But it was great, cheap and just so darn easy to make.  You do however, need a crockpot… and chicken…and a can of Pineapple…and a handful of wild rice… and something to do because you won’t have to spend your time making this; see the magical crackpot   –although it could be considered a ‘crack’pot as it’s so wonderful you just want to use it all the time. Maybe I will start calling it that!

Anyways, the magical CROCKpot does ALL the work! Even my husband can do this (especially when you forget and only remember on your way to work at 6:15am) and he did in fact do 96.8% of the work.

I don’t have any cute little discovery story for this one, I simply looked in my fridge and thought “chicken…again…hmmm..oh, I have a can of diced pineapple, which I cleverly picked up from the dollar store; making this meal cheap as chips, as the English would say! Then I remembered that I have the Crackpot.

But in this recipe, you have the perfect combination of protein and healthy carb. The pineapple is also filling and healthy (if you choose the right can– not the one filled with sugar, preservatives and possibly corn syrup.), read your labels.

OK, lets get down to it: It’s best to start this process in the morning, or noon.

Ingredients:

  • Chicken breast (2-4), or, if you’re like me and accidentally pick up chicken tenders, that’s fine too.
  • 1 Can of diced (or sliced will work too) Pineapple, including the JUICE– if you have fresh, that’s just as good– Ah*snob*em.
  • About 1 cup of water
  • 1 cup of rice (I used wild, but whatever you want is fine)
  • Cayenne pepper and S&P

Things you will need: 

  • A Crockpot aka. crackpot (or slowcooker)
  • A spoon
  • A can opener (if you can’t just tear the top off of your pineapple can)
  • a book, or drink, a job, or just some free time.

Directions:

  1. Put everything in the crackpot. I would add the rice 1/2 through or at least 2-3 hours before eating, but I don’t think it will hurt to have it in there for the 8-10 hours.
  2. Put the lid on.
  3. Plug in and Turn the crackpot on to LOW (if your starting it at 8am’ish; HIgh, if you’re starting it later, like noon, or want it for lunch)– now that I think of it, maybe not a good idea to start drinking at 8am–…or is it?  🙂
  4. At dinner time turn it of and scoop out your serving

When it’s finished, everything is perfectly sweet and savory and the pineapple no longer resembles a fruit–TRAITOR!! And goes perfectly with everything, all in the same bite.

Sprinkle with love and ENJOY!

XO

Kristi

**If you’re a reader of this blog, I apologize for the delay in my posts, I’m a horrible blogger. But Alas, I have been photographing more of my cooking and have 2-3 more recipes to come!!

 

Chocolate Dipped, Peanut-Butter-filled Pretzel squares…Fewf, what a mouthful!…Literally July 18, 2011

Filed under: baking,dessert,easy,food,health,lifestyle,treats — Kristi bri @ 5:30 pm
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When I first discovered peanut butter pretzels, it was a fateful encounter at Sprouts. We were picking up some meat for a bar-b-que, but I was starving NOW. Sitting at the check-out was a pre-packaged bag of these little puppies. I thought “pretzels, that’s a good-for-you (kinda) snack; peanut butter? I love peanut butter!!!–SOLD to the hungry girl at the check-out. I made it juuust long enough to pay for them, but not long enough to get us out of the store.

After that bag was finished (2 hours later), that was the sad and unfortunate end of the love affair— until we met again at a Kroger in Dallas a year later. Not only were they in a massive container, but at $5.00 they were cheap and only 140 calories & 7 grams of fat (for a serving of 10). How could I say “no” to saving my money AND my waist-line! Little did I know these little gems were going to become a staple in my household. Even my husband who doesn’t like peanut butter will go through about four handfuls of these in 1 sitting.

One day while munching on some, I noticed a similarity to the pretzel M&M’s (which I’ve only had once… so I don’t know how I came to this conclusion) and wondered how I could recreate the flavor fully. EUREKA: Chocolate dipped! And they would be a perfect addition to a gift for a friend’s birthday a few days later. I set out to get chocolate.

Ps. Hershey’s bars from the dollar store work well and are a lot cheaper than normal grocery store.

The only concern/problem I had was whether or not the chocolate would stay firm once it cooled (and wasn’t in the refrigerator)–if someone knows the trick to this, please comment.

Ingredients: Serves as many as you want–1 Hershey’s bar will easily cover over 30 pretzel nuggets.

  • Peanut Butter filled pretzels.
  • Chocolate- helps if it’s at room temperature. (About a 1/2 cup of chips, 1 Hershey’s bar, baking chocolate, white chocolate etc. etc.)

What you need:

  • A pot of boiling water (pots usually don’t come WITH boiling water, so you might need to make that happen…just sayin’)
  • A bowl that is big enough it can rest on top of the pot without touching the water. (see below) I don’t know what this technique is called but it’s used by Chocolatiers when tempering chocolate so it doesn’t burn etc. (?)
  • A spoon (normal size–like you’d eat cereal with).
  • Either some sort of baking sheet with wax paper on it, or I didn’t have wax paper, so I covered a cutting board in saran-wrap. (this is to put the finished product on to cool and it helps if you can fit it in the fridge.

What to do:

  1. Boil the water (As afore mentioned),
  2. Place the bowl on the pot at an angle (so the chocolate is contained in the corner)
  3. Keep moving the chocolate around so it melts evenly
  4. Once melted, you can attempt to “dip” the pretzel nugget in the chocolate, but I found it easier to use the spoon and use a spreading action to get it on there.
  5. Place the “dipped” nugget on your cooling surface.
  6. Repeat until all desired pretzels are covered–or you run out of chocolate.
  7. Place in fridge until chocolate is hardened.

Notice the pot in the bowl.

If you’re feeling ambitious and maybe this is  a nice party favor or something, try dipping the corner of them in the opposite colored chocolate and/or rolling them in a topping like Graham crackers, sprinkles, peppermint candy (for Christmas) etc.

Sprinkle with love and ENJOY!

 

Acorn Squash: The Ninja Veggie January 22, 2011

Filed under: cooking,easy,food,health,recipe,Soup — Kristi bri @ 6:36 pm
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Acorn Squash Quarters

If you don’t know what an Acorn squash looks like; just imagine what the offspring of a pumpkin and Acorn would be, except green with streaks of orange.  Not a lot of people cook these, or use them–or know what they are; they can be intimidating in the grocery store. I happen to think they’re one of the best winter vegetables and so durable. They last for a few days in the refrigerator (After being baked) and they make an excellent soup if you have any left over (see below).

Acorn squash is fat free and full of fiber, calcium and potassium. They have virtually no cholesterol and barely any (natural) sodium. They have anti-oxidants and are a good choice for an anti-inflammatory option. There is not a lot of sugar in the Acorn Squash, which makes it kind of bland without toppings such as salt and pepper etc. Also, the seeds inside the squash can be scooped out and made like pumpkin seeds for a snack. The skin is full of nutrients, but not a lot of people eat it.  If you’re on a no-starch diet, or no carb diet, be warned that these are abundant in squash.

I made this side-dish with a turkey Meatloaf (recipe coming). The left-overs were also used– cold– in a  salad.  You can cut them any way you want, but I quartered mine. Some people will half the squash and stuff them. You can also sprinkle them with flavors other than what I used. Curry flavors and other strong spices would be a good option.

Ingredients:Serves 4-6+, Time: aprox 40 min

  • 2 Acorn squash
  • Aprox. 2 Tsp Olive oil (for brushing over the squash)
  • S&P
  • Aprox 1 Tsp Nutmeg (for sprinkling over the squash)
  • 1 Tsp Garlic Salt (optional)

You will need:

  • A Big Strong knife (it’s hard to cut through when it’s uncooked)
  • A baking sheet (lined with aluminum foil to make clean-up easier)
  • *If you want to bake the seeds after, you’ll need a spoon to scoop and a bowl of water to let them soak in overnight (recipe coming)*

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 300-350
  2. Microwave the squash/es for about 40 sec to 1 min to soften the squash making it easier to cut.
  3. Cut them in half lengthways and scoop out the insides *put innards into your bowl of water– if baking the seeds*
  4. Brush/rub with olive oil
  5. Turn them face down on the baking sheet and put them in the oven– this will help them steam themselves.
  6. After about 15-20 min, check them and see if they’re soft enough to slice one more time (making it quartered).
  7. Flip them on their  back and sprinkle with the S&P, Garlic salt and/ nutmeg (or your choice of flavor)
  8. Bake another 20 min. At this point, you can broil them if you like, it will crisp them up–but keep an eye on them so they don’t burn. You can tell they’re done when you can easily pierce them with a fork and the fork will slide out easily too.
  9. Serve warm and with the skin. You can eat the skin, but I normally peel the skin off .

If you want them  made into a soup follow the same steps, or use your left-overs. Remove the skin, bring to a boil with some chicken/beef stock and blend until smooth. You can add any other vegetables to this if you like.

Don’t forget to sprinkle with love.

Enjoy

 

Recipes to come: Baked Acorn Squash seeds & Turkey Meatloaf (packed full of veggies)

Turkey meatloaf

Turkey meatloaf

Roasted Acorn Squash seeds

 

 

Mazo ball soup for EVERYBODY! October 11, 2010

Filed under: cooking,easy,food,health,lifestyle,recipe — Kristi bri @ 12:09 pm
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Mazo Ball soup

Mazo Ball soup

 

The first time I ever even heard of Mazo ball soup was when I took a three day trip to LA and my Father-in-law took my husband and I to Nate ‘n’ Al’s delicatessen. They kept talking about how good the Mazo (which to me is pronounced ‘maht-za’) ball soup was. I hesitantly asked what was in it and they described it as ‘a bowl of broth with a ball of ‘maht-za’ in it’.

“Like a big ball of cheese?” I asked, thinking ‘maht-za’ was short for Mozzarella. Even though this was probably a silly question, my mouth was salivating at the thought of a fresh ball of cheese in broth but torn at the thought that it could potentially be a melting ball of heart attack in a bowl.

Finally they described it as a boiled bread and the flour used to make it was called Matzo. I was relieved and intrigued. I ordered one–with vegetables (an option you have when you go to Nate ‘n’ Al’s). Ever since then I was hooked. Pretty much all Mazo ball soups taste the same to me, but Nate ‘N’ Al’s is always better.

Manischewitz Mazo ball soup Mix

At the grocery store in the ‘specialty/international’ section, they have mixes for this soup. like Manischewitz’s and  I’ve always been hesitant to buy one thinking that the Mazo balls would be hard to make. Finally a friend bought one and I inquired with her. Once feeling confident I could too achieve this Jewish delight, I bought two. They’re cheap as chips, therefore a very cost-wise meal.

In an effort to make the soup a little more hearty, I added some veggies to the  broth–also because that’s what Nate ‘n’ Al do.

The box comes with two packages–as long as you buy the ‘Mazo Ball AND soup mix’ (yes, there is one that is just the matzo balls) and then all you need is

  • 2 eggs
  • 2 Tbsp of oil (olive or canola or vegetable or soy etc. etc.)
  • 2 1/2 Quarts, aka. 10 Cups of water
  • 1-2 Normal Sized Carrots- sliced into 1/2″ or less pieces.
  • 1-2 stalks of celery- sliced the same as the carrots (see the first picture above)
  • A mouth.

If you do happen to only pick up the Mazo Ball mix, the broth is essentially just chicken stock, so if you have some of that lying around, you can use it (but use it as a concentrate and make half of your amount ( 5 cups) water).

Directions: Are on the package, but I’ll lay them out here:

  1. Since you have to let the Mazo ball batter sit for about 15 minutes I make that first. In a bowl big enough to hold about 4-5 cups, whisk the eggs and oil together.
  2. Add the package for the Mazo Balls to the oil and the eggs (I added a  bit of S&P, but I don’t think it’s necessary). Mix thoroughly and stick it in the fridge for a few minutes.
  3. Slice up your carrots and celery.
  4. In a humongous pot (that has a lid)–remember it has to hold 10 cups of water at least– add the soup package to the 10 cups of water.
  5. Add the veggies, and bring to a boil.
  6. If the water is boiling and the Mazo mix has been in the fridge for about 15 minutes, take it out; it’s time to make the mazo into balls!
  7. The package says to wet your hands when making the mazo into balls, and unless you have a shortage of water–do it–trust me, this stuff is sticky!
  8. The package also says to make the balls about 1-1 1/2 inches. I made them about 2+ inches because I thought they would be too small and I didn’t know they were going to swell up like  hot air balloon; ie. about 3-3 1/2 inches.
  9. You have to boil everything for about 20 minutes. This is a good amount of time; the veggies soften and the Mazo boils.

This makes enough for about 3 hungry people or 4-5 as a side dish. It’s very filling and oh-so-tasty! I was reading the ingredients for the Mazo balls and I think if you wanted to make this from scratch, all you would need is Mazo flour, oil, egg and some salt and pepper, along with the chicken stock and water for a broth. But don’t quote me on that– I only married into a Jewish family.

Don’t forget to sprinkle it with love and enjoy

Kristi