Posts Tagged ‘grill’


Well I mentioned it this morning, but tonight I’m kicking off a week-long, Summer Inspired Dinner Series! With bright mornings, warm nights and carefree summer days coming to an end, I thought, what better way to wave goodbye to summer than with a week of dinners that are easy, fresh & celebrate my favorite summer tastes?! 8)

Up first: Baked Tilapia with Grilled Asparagus & Wild Rice!



The tilapia was my second mystery item from Costco 😉 My Mom and I split a big pack for $5 each! I’ve mentioned this before, but Costco is a wonderful place to buy fresh seafood if you live in the Midwest, like me. 🙂

I really love the fresh, light flavor of Tilapia so I simply seasoned my filets with an Old Bay inspired mix. I combined:


  • Dried basil
  • Lemon pepper
  • Garlic salt
  • Cinnamon
  • Onion powder
  • Red pepper
  • Ground ginger
  • Paprika
  • Ground mustard
  • Salt & Pepper (unpictured)

Feel free to add or delete any spices. I just looked online to see what was in Old Bay and used whatever I already had on hand that matched. I combined everything in a seasoning shaker I just happen to own:


Next I seasoned each side of the Tilapia filets with the mix, placed them in a non-stick sprayed oven-safe dish, and topped with a few, wee pats of butter. Then I squeezed a wedge of lemon over everything and put it in the oven at 375 for 25 minutes, or until it was flaky.




Meanwhile, I cleaned up some asparagus and fired up the grill. Hello! Fresh asparagus + grill? Totally summer!


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I let these babies char and rolled them every couple minutes, until they were done.


Finally, I took some help from Uncle Ben and popped a Wild Rice packet into the microwave to heat up. Easy!


When I assembled my plate, I couldn’t help but smile. Easy, breezy dinner for an easy, breezy summer night. Perfect!


I’m so glad I simply seasoned my Tilapia filets instead of breading or sautéing them in oil. It was the perfect amount of spice, and I could taste the fresh fish.


I served lemon wedges on the side for squeezing 🙂


The grilled asparagus were smokey and perfectly cooked. I like my asparagus a little crunchy. How about you?


Wild rice, Ben’s request, was a perfect side dish. This particular product didn’t have a lot of preservatives or funky ingredients. Plus, it was ready in 90 seconds!


Now…what would a good summer dinner be without a perfectly summer dessert?? Nothing! That’s why I made Grilled Pineapple with Vanilla Ice Cream for dessert – wheeee!!!


I just grilled fresh pineapple until they were slightly charred and while we ate, I put them in a gladware container with a lid so they could steam and get soft.


When it was time for dessert, I dished out some vanilla ice cream and placed my pineapple around it.IMG_7478

I don’t think you need me to describe how incredible this was…cool, creamy ice cream + sweet, smokey pineapple…WOW!


Well – I am a FULL and HAPPY lady 🙂 The Summer Inspired Dinner Series is off to a good start if you ask me! Tonight’s dinner met all the requirements: fresh ingredients, insanely easy preparation and TOTALLY the taste of summer! 8)

Stay tuned tomorrow morning for a fun announcement – until then, have a super night!


Do you ever cook fresh fish?

This was actually my first time cooking white fish and it seriously couldn’t have been easier…it was actually easier than cooking chicken because you don’t have to trim it, you can tell when it’s done, etc. Loved it!


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Say that headline to the tune of “Just Another Manic Monday,” and it’ll make more sense 😉 

So why is it Walking Wednesday? Because I’ve walked/ran 6 miles today! My mom and I walked our usual 1.5 mile loop this morning (where I seriously felt like I was in a tropical rainforest there were so many birds chirping – the title of this post was almost Birds Gone Wild!) Then during lunch I took a 2.5 mile stroll and took these pictures.



The first picture is of the beautiful state capitol building of Iowa…and maybe you’re wondering what the second picture is…yes, that’s a picture of the ever elusive Iowa winter feet! After months of being stuffed into wool socks, boots and slippers, they were soooo happy to get out! Look at them – so pale – and naked!

Miles 5 and 6 were taken to the mat when Ben and I ran 2 miles round trip down to the grocery store to pick up some last minute items for dinner. Now, I usually feel like for me personally, exercise has to be done all at once and be strenuous in order to be counted as a “workout.” But, I power walked for each session today, broke a sweat and I really do feel like I accomplished something!

So, what’s for dinner you ask? Well, I went for round two on the grill tonight with BRATS! I’m not going to lie to you – brats are not good for you. Not even a little. However, I choose the freshly made variety from the meat counter at my grocery store so I feel like there are lesser amounts of preservatives in them. Also, I usually only eat one (ok, there was that one time…family if you’re reading, move along) so I feel like its ok to have a good brat-tastic grill out now and then! When I got home from work today, I put them along with some quartered onions and three foamy beers into a big pot to soak while I headed outside to lounge on the deck in the beautiful sunshine and wait for Ben to get home. Ahhh, it was the life 🙂


I served the drunken brats with some mustard & sauerkraut (the ONLY way to serve brats, in my opinion,) and we also had fresh, steamed broccoli and sweet, sweet cantaloupe. Brats are so worth the calorie splurge you guys…the snap of the casing, the smoky grill taste, the tangy sauerkraut – this meal screams summer!! And that makes me happyyyyyyy!!



What’s your perfect grill menu? Mine is brats + grilled corn on the cob + grilled vegetable foil packet + grilled peach with brown sugar and whipped cream. YUM!

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