Garden, Snacks

Guacamole

Spicy Guac

Avocado‘s are something we have never bought or used at home.  I don’t know why. We love guacamole.  We eat it in Mexico all the time.  We order it out when dining at a Mexican or Southwestern restaurant, but we have never made it at home until now.

Fresh Cilantro
Fresh Cilantro

It was so easy and simple to make guacamole.  It was so good especially with our fresh cilantro from the garden. I can’t say the kids loved it.  They do however prefer guacamole vs. avocados solo.

Also, I think back to my childhood.  We never ate guacamole or avocados.  My first experience with avocados was in my early 20’s when I began to travel for work.  It was also when I learned to love so many other different types of food. I grew up in a “meat and potatoes and pasta” kind of family (which was awesome), however we didn’t eat a lot of different kinds of foods.

At our house today, we make the kids taste everything. We eat a lot of different types of food. Our kids have quite a sophisticated palate except Nick, the five-year old, but we are working on that!

Ingredients

  • 3 avocados peeled, pitted, and mashed
  • 3 tablespoons of fresh cilantro chopped (from the garden)
  • 2 Roma Tomatoes (chopped)
  • 1/2 cup of diced red onion
  • 1 tablespoon of minced garlic
  • 1 teaspoon of salt
  • 1 lime (juiced)
  • 1 teaspoon of ground cayenne pepper (optional)

Directions

  1. In a large bowl, mash together the avocados, lime juice, and salt. Stir in cilantro, onion, tomatoes, and garlic.  Stir in cayenne pepper for desired taste. Refrigerate for 2-3 hours.

This is super simple and easy for anyone to make. It was our first time eating the fresh cilantro from the garden too.  Yummy!

Family, Food, Garden

Zucchini Squash Parmesan

 

A family favorite from my Mom
A family favorite from my Mom

When I’m in the mood for a different vegetable, zucchini and yellow squash is always my “go to” vegetable, especially in the summer time.  You can do so many fun things with squash.  Of course, we love to marinate squash and grill it. You can put them on kabobs or eat them raw as a snack with your favorite dip.  My kids are fans of ranch and zucchini, although my kids will eat almost anything dipped in ranch.

This recipe is a long time family favorite from my Mom, Carol DeFrancesco.  With many recipes, I may tweak it a bit for personal preference.  For this particular recipe, I use olive oil to brown and sauté my squash.  My Mom used butter for the most part.   The olive oil seems to be an easier and healthier alternative.  This side dish is great with any meat of your choice.  It’s easy to make, but it does take a little time to sauté the squash so be sure to plan accordingly.

Zucchini Squash Parmesan

  • Servings: 6-8
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Ingredients

Directions

  1. Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a large pan on medium heat. Meanwhile, chop both the zucchini squash and yellow squash in large 1 inch pieces.  (If you cut them too thin, they get mushy.)
  2. Brown and sauté the squash approximately 2-3 minutes on each side.  Once finished, remove squash and add more until all finished.
  3. Next, put all the cooked squash back into the pan over low heat.  Spread the Rotel tomatoes or diced tomatoes evenly on top of the squash.
  4. Season the squash with fresh basil and/or Italian seasonings and salt and pepper.
  5. Last, sprinkle the fresh parmesan cheese all over the squash.  Cover the pan to melt the cheese.  Serve and enjoy!

Like with any recipe, you can alter this to your preference or what you might have at home.  In the past, I always used Italian seasoned diced tomatoes, but then I tried a can of Rotel tomatoes with chiles.  We love the extra kick from the Rotel.

Stay tuned for some more recipes using squash!

 

Food, Garden

Introducing…The St. Louis Cooks!

The St. Louis Cooks
The St. Louis Cooks

Cooking in the kitchen is a family affair at this household.  We love to cook and we try to involve one of the kids in almost every meal.  We are a family of five…Mom (Angie), Dad (Bobby), Melanie (10), Jack (9), and Nick (5).  Do we cook every day?  Heck no, however we do cook several times a week.  Some meals are easy and simple, while others are more elaborate.  At the Sievers home, cooking is fun for everyone! Spending time together in the kitchen, and at the table is important to us, because we live a crazy, busy life full of business meetings, trips, homework, soccer games, basketball, volleyball, dance competitions, and the list goes on.

My name is Angie Sievers.  I’m a midwest girl, born and raised in St. Louis, MO. Most of the time you will hear from me, but the other four will also write some posts from time to time. We may also have a few guest bloggers too.  I love to write so I figured that starting a blog would be the best outlet, and what’s the big deal in adding something else to my “to do list”.

We will feature lots of things that we like to do in this blog.  The emphasis will be on food, but it will also focus on family.  You will hear about our Sievers Sunday dinners which are typically spent at my mother n law’s house.  It’s the gathering place for all the aunts, uncles, cousins, and some friends too. She has a huge back yard with a swimming pool and lots of space for the kids to play. The kids look so forward to our Sunday dinners at MaMa’s house.

We also like to dine out so we will feature some of our favorite local hot spots in and around St. Louis, MO.  I might even add a few places from my travel experiences while on business too.

The St. Louis Cooks have planted our second garden this year.  I was so lucky to have such a great experience with our garden last year.  It was my first time EVER planting seeds.  I grew up a city girl so we didn’t spend much time gardening.  We planted zucchini, watermelon, cucumbers, carrots (which I won’t ever do again), and sunflowers.  We had so much success last year that we have planted another one for the Summer of 2013.  Stay tuned for more on the garden…

Sunflowers in Bloom
Sunflowers in Bloom

I hope you will join us as we share some recipes, our Sunday dinners, some local favorites, and so much more!