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NEW YEARS EVE ENTERTAINING WITH LA VAQUITA

First off, I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday with family and friends. Today is the first day I pulled out my computer in 5 days! I honestly cannot remember the last time I have ever done that. It felt so great to unplug and really enjoy quality time with my family in Arizona.  We are headed back to Dallas today and I am excited to start prepping for a little New Year’s eve get together at our house.

With a little help from La Vaquita, I am sharing my three go-to appetizer recipes that will be a hit at any get-together and how to host a stress-free New Year’s eve party.

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COOKING DETAILS: HEALTHY BANANA MUFFINS

Healthy Banana Muffins

In effort to start baking and cooking more at home, I took this Sunday (while my husband was watching football) to test out a few new go-to recipes for the week.  First up on my list was these easy banana muffins.  They are the perfect quick breakfast when you are on the go in the morning.  Reheat them all week and spread a little almond butter on top for extra protein ;)

Head to the bottom of the post of the full recipe.

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COOKING DETAILS: LAST NIGHT’S DINNER

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The first week of every year I feel refreshed and ready to tackle the new year with a fresh outlook.  Last year I said I was going to cook more at home and this year I am determined to make that happen.  My plan: Ease into cooking 4 nights a week at home (because let’s be honest by Friday I am going to need a glass of wine and probably a cheese board-even though I am not supposed to have it).  I recently found a great clean eating guide that helps with portion control while still enjoying a well balanced diet.  Year after year, I say to myself I am cutting carbs and eating only fruits and veggies to cleanse my body. About 2.5 days into my cleanse I cave and order a pizza and it all goes down hill from there. Well today, I  hit 2.5 days and I am still feeling good thanks to my plan to not deprive myself of the foods I love. Instead, I have been enjoying smaller portions once a day.

ROASTED VEGETABLE ROTINI

Yields 4 servings

1/2 box of Whole Wheat Rotini

3 large carrots

1 red pepper

1 yellow pepper

2 broccoli floretes

1 carton of cherry tomatoes

1/2 red onion

Obviously this recipe can be adjusted to using any veggies you love (these are some of our favorites and what I had in the fridge).

Step 1: Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.

Step 2: Roughly chop all veggies so they are approximately the same size and lay flat on a baking sheet.  Take 1/2 tablespoon of olive oil and drizzle on veggies.  Add salt and pepper as desired. Place baking sheet in the oven for approximately 15 minutes or until vegetables are lightly browned.

Step 3: Boil pasta until al dente (approx. 12 minutes for whole wheat). Drain pasta and place into a large bowl.

Step 4:  Take veggies out of the oven and toss into pasta bowl.  Add 1/2 tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil and balsamic vinegar to taste.  Add a little fresh parmesan cheese to taste.

We added grilled chicken to this recipe for extra protein.

What are some of your cooking goals for this year?  I would love to hear! Also, if you have any great, easy recipes send them my way :)

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