Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Sweet & Sour Fish Fillets

It's been a while since I had time to actually share a new recipe on this blog. Since I have a little time on my hands today, I will share with all of you a quick recipe that's really easy to make and super yummy to eat. Sweet & Sour Fish, who doesn't like Sweet & Sour Fish, right? Both Kevin and I love this dish to bits. We would usually eat that with a huge plate of steaming white rice. Mmmm mmm mmmmmmmm :D Try this recipe, I hope you will like it as much as we do!
The first thing we must do is prepare the fish fillets. You can pretty much use any type of fish fillet for this dish but I would usually use catfish. It's really affordable and it taste awesome! Start off by cleaning the fillets. Then, add some pepper, garlic powder and salt to some flour and set it aside. Now, heat some oil in a large pan. Once its nice and hot, coat your fillets in flour and drop it into the oil. Remember not to overcrowd the pan.
You know that your fillets are ready once they turn golden brown. Take them out of the oil and set them aside on some kitchen towels.
Now, its time to make the sauce. It's really easy. All you need to do is mix some ketchup, oyster sauce, light soy sauce, white vinegar, sesame oil, sugar and pepper with some chicken stock. You can also add in some chili paste too if you like. Apart from that, I would also add in some syrup from the canned fruits that I would be using later on. There is really no fix ratio in all those ingredients. Some people like it really sour and some people like sweet. The best thing would be just to taste the mixture and continue to adjust the amount until you get the taste that you like. For me, I like it on the sweeter side. Once you are done with the sauce mixture, set it aside.
Alrighty, now we can put it all together. Start off by sauteing one large onion and one green pepper that has been cut into bite size pieces.
Then, add in a can of mixed tropical fruits. Remember to drain away the syrup before adding the fruits in. If you do not like mixed tropical fruits, you could also just use canned or fresh pineapples.
After sauteing the vegetables and fruits for a bit, add in the sauce mixture. Allow it to simmer until it comes to a boil. Then, add in some cornstarch that has been mixed with a little bit of water. This will help thicken up the sauce. Once the sauce has thicken, it's ready to be served. I would usually just add in my fish fillets into the sauce and give it a good mix. You could also place your fillets on a serving platter and pour the sauce over it. Either ways, it will be yummy! You can serve it with some steamed rice or if you like, you could even eat it with noodles. Try it out and let me know if you like it! :D


Tuesday, May 7, 2013

The ZzzQuil Nights Challenge

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of ZzzQuil. All opinions are 100% mine.
I have a question for all of you out there. Do you sleep well at night? I do. Well, for the most parts, I do. I would fall right to sleep the moment my head hits the pillow. HOWEVER, there are certain nights when it’s just impossible to fall asleep. I would spend the entire night, just tossing and turning. The worst thing is getting up the next day. I would feel totally drained and tired the entire day. I was down with a cold a couple of weeks back and had a tough time falling asleep. I took some Vicks® NyQuil® and headed to bed. I fell asleep within minutes and slept through the night! When I woke up, I thought to myself, wouldn’t it be great if they made something that would help me fall asleep and sleep this well even when I don’t have a cold?

Guess what? They do have something like that! I was thrilled beyond words when Socialspark got in touch with me not too long ago and asked if I would like to try a product from P&G called ZzzQuil. ZzzQuil is made by the same people who make Vicks NyQuil. The difference is, it’s for when your only symptom is occasional sleeplessness. That’s right, it’s not for colds, and it’s not for pain. It’s just for sleep. ZzzQuil’s active ingredient, diphenhydramine HCI, helps reduce the time it takes for you to fall asleep when you have difficulty falling asleep, so you can sleep soundly and wake up refreshed. It is also the only over-the-counter sleep-aid medication available in both Liquid (Warming Berry flavor) and LiquiCap® forms. The best thing about it is that it’s non-habit forming as well as safe and effective when used according to package directions! That was exactly what I was looking for! Truthfully, that is one of the biggest thing I was worried about when I was looking at sleep aids. I didn’t want to be addicted to it. ZzzQuil sounded like a dream come true. So, of course I had to try it.

In less than a week, P&G sent me my very own 6 fl oz sample of ZzzQuil to try out. I totally love the packaging. It’s packaged in a very nice shade of purple (my favorite color!). It also comes with a measuring cup, so it’s really convenient too. I tried ZzzQuil that very same night. I must add that I pleasantly surprised that the Warming Berry flavor tasted really yummy. Certain medications taste so bad, you just dread taking it. It’s not the case with ZzzQuil. It was really tasted good! I headed to bed soon after taking it and I feel asleep without any problems. The best part was, I stayed asleep until the very next morning. Eight and a half hours of deep restful sleep! I woke up the next day all refreshed and charged up. I wasn’t tired or groggy from the medication. In fact, it was quite the opposite. I felt great! I must say that I was glad that I decided to try ZzzQuil out! You guys shouldn’t just take my word for it. You should try it out too. Go ahead, test out ZzzQuil and tweet about your experience using the hashtag #ZzzQuilNight. Also, you should head over to Facebook and ‘like’ ZzzQuil to get all the latest information about it. I did, you should too!

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Argyle Restaurant - Kearny, NJ

Each time we visit our doctor's office, we would park in front of Argyle Restaurant or Piper Cove (his office is located directly across the street), where are there always ample metered parking spots. From the signs outside the restaurant, we sort of figured out that it was a Scottish restaurant. After some research online, I found out that Argyle Restaurant and Piper Cove is actually under the same management. Pipers Cove is a specialty shop that carries all kinds of Irish and Scottish products, from candies to highland regalia, kilts and bagpipes! Each time we passed by, we would say that we need to check it out someday, but we never got around to doing so.
I was looking at some Living Social deals there other day (yes, I do that religiously every morning! :P) and saw a deal for Argyle Restaurant. Only $15 for $30 worth of food. I had some left over Living Social credit, so we ended up paying only $5 for $30 worth of food. A very good deal indeed! After reading some reviews on Argyle Restaurant, I found out that it was featured in the NJ Monthly magazine not too long ago and many claim that they serve the best and highest quality Scottish fish and chips in the whole of NJ! Wow, so yeah, we were really excited to check it out.
We decided to go for an early dinner and the the dining room was practically empty. Just us and two other tables. I guess it's a lunch and late dinner place, who knows. The decor of the place was nothing to shout about, just basic furniture and they had Scottish themed photos lining the walls. However, there was a certain charm to the place. Since it was a Scottish place, Kevin thought that he would try the Shepard's Pie ($14.95). Kevin is a huge fan Shepard's Pie, so he was quite eager to try it. I didn't get a chance taste the Shepard's Pie but Kevin said that he totally loved it! He said that it was really flavorful and yummy. From his almost licked clean plate at the end of the meal, I am guessing it must be really good!
Now, the piece de resistance, my Scottish Surf and Turf ($16.95)! A large portion of Fish and Chips, Coleslaw and a Meat Pie. Firstly, let me start with what I didn't like. The coleslaw wasn't really my favorite, it had a weird taste to it. I let Kevin try a little and he agrees with me. There is just something not right about it. Now that the coleslaw is out of the way, I must say that the rest of the meal rocked my socks off! The fish and chips was really one of the best fish and chips I have ever tasted. The batter was light and really good. Add in a little vinegar, and you will be in fish and chips heaven! For an additional $1, you could get curry on your chips. Trust me, that would be a dollar well spent. The mild curry goes so well with the freshly made chips, mmm mmmmmmmm goood! The meat pie was really yummy too. It's crust was flaky and the meat filling was really delicious. I ate that with some HP sauce and boy oh boy, it was good!!

Overall, we had an awesome meal. I have never been to Scotland before (so that I could compare) but I think we had some really authentic Scottish food that day. It doesn't really matter even if it wasn't authentic, because it was really yummy! The fish and chips was seriously one of the best fish and chips I have ever tried. No wonder so many people swears that Argyle serves the best fish and chips in the whole of New Jersey. I wouldn't go that far (since I haven't tasted all the fish and chips in NJ), but I can say that yes, the fish and chips there is mighty awesome!


Argyle Restaurant
212 Kearny Avenue,
Kearny, NJ 07032
Tel: 201-991-3900
Web: http://argylerestaurant.com/index.html


Friday, October 19, 2012

Life is Sweet with NECTRESSE™ No Calorie Sweetener!

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of NECTRESSE™Sweetener. All opinions are 100% mine.

I am sure that most of you would have noticed that in the past year or two, Kevin and I have been trying our best to start eating healthier and exercising more. We have been incorporating more fresh fruits and vegetables into our diet as well as cut back on unhealthy food. One of the biggest change take we took in this effort to live a healthier lifestyle was to try reduce or even eliminate our sugar intake.  Now, this was a big task for us, because we both have a sweet tooth. So, we had to rely on no calorie sweeteners as a substitute. Yes, I know, you must be saying, hang on. I heard that certain sweeteners are bad for you? Also, some taste really horrible. How can you even put up with that? Well, let me tell you this. If you are thinking that, then you must have never heard of NECTRESSE™Sweetener!
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From the maker of Splenda Sweeteners, NECTRESSE Sweetener is unlike any other sweetener in the market. It is the only 100% natural sweetener made from fruit, monk fruit extract, to be exact. Monk fruit is a small green melon that has grown on lush vines in remote mountain regions in Asia for hundreds of years. It’s deliciously sweet and when combined with the perfect blend of other natural sweeteners, it brings us the rich sweet taste of sugar, without all the calories. That’s right, not only is it 100% natural, it also has zero calories per serving too! NECTRESSE Natural No Calorie Sweetener is 150 times sweeter than sugar and can be used in cooking and baking to add natural, zero calorie per serving sweetness in our favorite beverages and a delicious variety of foods. I had a chance to sample it a while ago and I must say, I am hooked! I use it all the time now. I would use it to sweeten my drinks, especially my iced tea and hot chocolate. Also, I would sprinkle a little on my cereal every morning. It definitely gives it a little extra sweetness, minus the calories! Apart from that, I would also use it in my baking. Boy, I sure made a whole lot of stuff with it. I tried baking an apple pie, various cakes and even some apple turnovers.  In fact, let me share with you my all-time favorite Apple Turnover recipe, that I tried making with NECTRESSE.

SIMPLE APPLE TURNOVERS


Ingredients
  • 1 store bought puff pastry
  • ½ peeled, cored and cubed apple
  • 1 single serve packet of NECTRESSE Sweetener
  • 1 tsp flour
  • Some cinnamon
  • A pat of butter
  • Store bought Icing (optional)
Preparation
  1. Preheat oven to 375. Mix the apple with NECTRESSE Sweetener, flour and some cinnamon.
  2. Place puff pastry dough on a baking sheet.
  3. Put the apple mixture on one side of the puff pastry. Top it with a pat of butter.
  4. Fold dough in half and crimp the edges with a fork.
  5. Put it in the oven for about 40 mins or until the crust in nicely brown.
  6. Once it has sufficiently cooled down, you can drizzle some icing over it and serve. The icing is entirely optional.
* This recipe makes a single serving of Apple turnover. Make as many as you like!!

Can’t wait to try this recipe with NECTRESSE? Well, you can! Just visit www.Nectresse.com/free-sample to sign up for your very own FREE sample of NECTRESSE™Sweetener! I am very sure that you will love it as much as I do. Oh and you know who else loves NECTRESSE? Lisa Ling! That’s right. I’m not the only one that thinks that NECTRESSE is awesome. Check out what Lisa Ling has to say about it in the video below. So, what are you waiting for? Watch the video, share it with your friends and go get your free sample of NECTRESSE today!

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Sunday, September 16, 2012

Check Out Kmart's Big Layaway Giveaway!

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of Kmart. All opinions are 100% mine.

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Summer is almost over and the kids are all back in school. You must be thinking, finally, I have some time to relax and enjoy some ‘me time’. Sure, you most definitely deserve it but don’t forget, it’s also time to start prepping for the holiday season. It might seem a long ways off but really, it’s not. Only 15 weeks left before the holidays! With so many things to do and so many gifts to buy, you would want to get a head start in the prepping. If you are anything like me, I’m sure you would agree with me that you wouldn’t want to be one those last minute shoppers. If you wait til the last minute, there wouldn’t be anything good left, well, maybe except those really expensive stuff that is out of your budget or out of season stuff that nobody wants anymore. After all, the early bird gets the worm, right?

I don’t know about you but I have already been eyeing some holiday gifts that I will be placing them on Kmart’s free layaway this year. Those golf clubs and necklace would make excellent gifts for my family, don’t you think? Check out the big screen tv. Doesn’t it look awesome? Boy, I can imagine my husband’s face when he sees that under the tree come Christmas morning. Talking about TVs, I remember this one time when we saw a really nice TV for sale but we couldn’t get it because that store didn’t have layaway and we didn’t have enough extra money at that time to get it. An opportunity to grab a good deal was lost, just because that store doesn’t have layaway. From then on, I always made it a point to shop at Kmart. Why? Well, they have the best layaway program, hands down.

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Why do I say that Kmart is the best? Well, let’s take a look at the chart above. I’m going to show you a comparison of Kmart’s layaway program vs other retailers like Walmart, Best Buy and Toys R Us. Right off the bat, you can see that none of them comes even close to Kmart. Kmart is the only retailer who offers layaway for their full range of merchandise. Not only that, there are no minimum item or transaction amount. Kmart always strives to put the customer first. That is they offer services that makes the customers life easier. For example, there is a online layaway option that allows you do your shopping from the comforts of your home. You can also pay online and pick up at the store or if you are shopping for a loved one in another state, you can shop at a Kmart nearest to you and they can pick it up from another state. How cool is that? I do not see Walmart, Best Buy or Toys R Us doing all that!

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If that is not good enough of a reason to play an item or more in Kmart’s layaway, here is one reason why you most definitely should. Just like us, Kmart is also prepping for the season of giving and to coincide with this time they are launching “Kmart's Big Layaway Giveaway”. What that? Well, how that works is that there will be is one layaway giveaway at each store, once a week. This will go on every week, from 9/9/12 through 11/17/12. All you need to do is put your purchases on layaway and every week, you will stand a chance to win your remaining balance paid off! I don’t know about you but I am surely really excited about this giveaway and hope that I will be one of those weekly winners! So, what are you waiting for? Now's the time to place those gifts you've been eying on layaway and also get the chance to win some great prizes at Kmart! Remember, it ends on 11/17/12.

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NMEDA is the key to FREEDOM!

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of NMEDA. All opinions are 100% mine.

Imagine this. You wake up, hop out of bed, get ready for work and before you know it, you are running down the stairs, jumping into your car and driving to work. For many of us, it’s an everyday routine. It takes about 25 minutes or so to do all that. We do not even think about it. However, for a certain group of people, it’s not all that easy. Yes, I am talking about people with disabilities and their caregivers. Living with disabilities is hard. It takes a lot of time and effort to move about, just to get ready for the day. Don’t even get me started about getting ready to head out to places. Even though I am not disabled, I get it. I understand. Guess what? I am not the only one who does. There is a whole group of people that are dedicated to making life for people with disabilities a whole lot easier.

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What am I talking about? What group of people? Well, I am talking about NMEDA (National Mobility Equipment Dealer Association)! NMEDA is a non-profit trade association of mobility equipment dealers, manufacturers, driver rehabilitation specialists and other professionals dedicated to expanding opportunities for people with disabilities to drive or be transported in vehicles modified with mobility equipment. Originally started as an association of mobility equipment dealers in the state of Florida, membership opened in 1989 on a national level and the National Mobility Equipment Dealers Association was formed. The organization promotes and supports individual members engaged in the modification of quality transportation for people with disabilities. Currently with 600+ members nationwide, all of the members are required to adhere to the safety standards of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and to follow the guidelines set by NMEDA. The guidelines, which are actually a living document providing detailed recommended practices on equipment installation and modifications, are updated yearly.

Now that you know all about NMEDA, let me tell you about the Quality Assurance Program (QAP). The QAP is a recognized accreditation program for the mobility equipment industry. It was developed to promote quality, safety, and reliability and is the only program of this in this industry. In short, a QAP designation enhances vehicle modification and mobility equipment installation in a manner consistent with the highest guidelines available.

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You might be thinking, whoa, hang on. Is it really that important for those with disabilities to have a Wheelchair Accessible Vehicle? If so, what is the correct one for me? Well, of course it’s important. Just like how a soccer player needs his soccer boots or how a football player needs his helmet, a person with disabilities needs a vehicle that allows him to be as mobile as can. There are many transportation solutions out there, from minivans, trucks, wheelchair and scooter carriers, lifts, ramps, hand controls to transfer seats, to the person must find one that best fits him. All NMEDA QAP dealers offer in person individual evaluations. This way, with their years of experience and personal touch, they would be able to recommend the best possible solution for you. Not only that, they also offer 24 hour local emergency assistance, on-site sales and support. If you buy a vehicle online on through a non NMEDA dealer, you probably will not receive the same service.

So, what are you waiting for? Head out to NMEDA’s website to learn more and visit a NMEDA QAP (Quality Assurance Program) Dealer for mobility solutions Program) dealer today! Remember, transportation is the key to freedom and NMEDA is the key to quality transportation.

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Thursday, September 13, 2012

Insalata Caprese aka Caprese Salad

It's been a while since I shared any recipes with all of you, so I figured I'll just share something really quick and easy to make. This is the perfect summer time salad, when fresh tomatoes are in season. Insalata Caprese (or better known as Caprese Salad here in the States) originated from the region of Campania in Italy. An interesting fact that I found from Wikipedia is that this salad is sometimes called Insalata Tricolore, referring to the three colors of the Italian flag. Interesting. Anyways, I simply love this salad because it's really yummy to eat and really simple to make. It takes less than 10 minutes to put everything together. Here's how you make it.
Start off by washing a few large tomatoes. It's always good to choose the juicy ripe ones. Slice up the tomatoes and set them aside.
Next, you would need some fresh buffalo mozzarella cheese. Remove the cheese from it's packaging (it's usually sold, soaked in water) and slice it into pieces.
Then, it's time to put it all together. Arrange the tomatoes, fresh mozzarella cheese and fresh basil leaves on a plate. Just alternate the tomatoes and cheese, with random basil leaves all over. Now, traditionally, one would just drizzle extra virgin olive oil on top and you are set to go. I changed it up a little and combined 1 part extra virgin olive oil to 1 part balsamic vinaigrette. Drizzle that over the salad and top it up with some freshly cracked black pepper and some salt. All done! Now, wasn't that easy? =)

Monday, August 13, 2012

Back to School Savings with Dollar General

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of Dollar General. All opinions are 100% mine.

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Can you believe it, we are almost half way through August. Soon, the kids will be back to school and this only means one thing, it’s back to school shopping time! I know many parents and guardians who do not look forward to this at all. Not only do you have to put up with crowds at the mall but you always end up spending way more than expected. Trust me; back to school shopping doesn’t come cheap! In today’s economy, every little bit of savings helps.

For those of you who are in the midst of getting ready for some back to school shopping, I’ve got some awesome news to share with you. Did you know that you can save big with Back to School Saving from Dollar General? That’s right, I’m talking about big time discounts. For those of you who don’t know, Dollar General Corporation is the nation's largest small-box discount retailer. They make shopping for everyday needs simpler and hassle-free by offering a carefully edited assortment of the most popular brands at low everyday prices in small, convenient locations. Therefore, Dollar General is an excellent option to save big on both back to school and back to campus shopping. There is a variety of items at everyday low prices to help cross off items from the Back to School Lists!

This year, both Kevin and I are very much involved in getting my little sister Ashley ready for college. We have been going around shopping for the best deals, to get her ready for college. After comparing prices, we came to the conclusion that Dollar General really gives you that bang for your buck! We could get all kinds of school supplies as well as stuff for her dorm room there. It’s basically a one stop shop! We managed to pick up almost everything on her list, from stationary to towels, hangers, food containers to even her alarm clock and cordless phone!

The savings from Dollar General is really good to begin with but I’ll let you in on how you can save even more. How? Well, you can save even more with the changing Back to School mobile coupon available for mobile phones by scanning the embedded QR code below this post. If you phone doesn’t allow you to scan, you can also get extra savings by texting "bts" to 34898 from your mobile phone. It’s that awesome? So what are you waiting for? Go ahead and start saving big today!

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Saturday, August 11, 2012

Italian Sausage with Peppers & Onions

Yessss, I know I haven't been blogging for a while. Yesss, I know. In my past few posts, I said that I will be blogging more but I have yet to do that. Sooo, here's what I am going to do. I am going to pretend that there wasn't any break in my blogging and just carry on blogging like usual :P How's that? LOL! Anyways, it's been a while since I shared any recipes with all of you. So, here's a quick one that's really simple to make but super yummy to eat. I would make this on days when I am really lazy but still want something home made and hearty. Try it, this recipe is definitely a keeper.
Start off by browning 6 links (about 4 oz) of sweet Italian sausages in a large pan. If you like it spicy, you could use hot Italian sausages too. Make sure you brown all sides of the sausages. Once it's done, remove it from the pan and then set them aside.
Using the same pan, add in some green peppers and onions. You could also add in some yellow and red peppers too if you like.
After sauteing for a bit, season with some basil, oregano, black pepper and garlic powder. Then, add in a can of diced tomatoes. I used diced tomatoes that has been seasoned with Italian herbs but you can pretty much use just any regular diced tomatoes.
Mix the tomatoes with the rest of the ingredients then add in about half a cup of red wine. If you like, you could also use Marsala wine. Remember to try and get as much of the burnt bits off the bottom of the pan. You'll be surprised how much flavor that adds to the dish.
Give everything a good mix and return the sausages into the pan. Allow it to simmer for about 15 to 20 minutes, until all the sauce is reduced and it's good to go! How easy was that? I served that up with some penne pasta but you can pretty much serve it with anything. Pasta, rice, potatoes, Italian bread....anything that you like! Try it and let me know how it turns out! :D