A Busy Day’s Dinner – Crock-Pot Pork Tacos

This Week.

porktacos

Fast & Easy Crock-Pot Pork Tacos – I’ve made these beasts before and they are delicious!

Thankfully, I’m starting to get really busy again. I start school up tomorrow, continuing to write and work on The Real Sweetheart, still exercising and working on some side projects for the Draper-in-laws. Oh, and Blair and I are dog-sitting a Golden Retriever pup for the next 10 days!

I’m pretty sure after all is said and done I’m going to be pretty exhausted! I’m still excited though. These are conditions that I work best in and I’m excited to see the outcomes!

That being said, life still continues and dinner still needs to be made. So to make my life a tad easier today, I brought out my trusted Crock-Pot!

Tonight’s Busy Day Dinner? Citrus Pork Tacos, with a big ole glass of Coca-Cola to wash it all down.

First, get some:

  • Pork – any cut
  • Grill Mates Marinade (Baja Citrus and Mojito Lime ~ I use both)
  • 1 can of chicken broth (this seems weird, but it’s purely used to add some more flavor)
  • 1 orange
  • 1 lime
  • Corn tortillas
  • The toppings (sour cream, tomatoes, cabbage/lettuce, onions, cheese)

Then:

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  1. Follow the directions on the the marinades and mix it together in the Crock-Pot ~ I omitted the oil the Grill Mates call for the second time I made this.
  2. Add the Pork and orange/lime slices
  3. Mix everything together!
  4. Put it on low for 4 hours ~ I honestly think this depends on your Crock-Pot, but this is the perfect time and temperature for me!
  5. Once everything is cooked through, cube up the pork and place it back into the “juice” to enhance the pork even more
  6. Fry up some corn tortillas, add the meat and toppings and enjoy!

Something we do here is sprinkle some Parmesan cheese onto the tortilla after frying it up. It adds a little salty taste to the tortilla and sucks up the excess oil. It adds the perfect finishing touch!

Lauren

Easy Soda Bread Recipe

Soda Bread.

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We had a combined Saint Patrick’s Day celebration and birthday dinner for my dad on Sunday. Both he and Blair loved the Soda Bread!

I don’t know about you guys, but Saint Patrick’s Day is a big deal in our household. We go all out. Corned beef & cabbage, red potatoes & carrots, Guinness chocolate cake and homemade Soda Bread. It’s seriously all too delicious.

Now I’ve been watching the women in my life make corned beef since I can remember, but it was when I was in elementary school that I can first remember having Soda Bread. I went to a private Catholic school and there was an Irish family that went there – like really really Irish! Since the school was small, we were always doing cool little activities. And this one year Alexandra’s dad, Mr. Dent, came in and told us how to make Soda Bread in his Irish accent. I must of been in first grade, but I still tell people about that day. Now married, it was my turn to make Soda Bread on my own and it was quite the daunting task!

I searched around for the perfect recipe. However, most of them had raisins or were sweet and I was just wanting a classic Soda Bread recipe. In the end, I tweaked a couple of recipes to make the perfect one for us.

Our recipe calls for these four ingredients:

  • 3 1/2 cups of All Purpose Flour
  • 1 teaspoon of Baking Soda
  • 1 teaspoon of Salt
  • 12 ounces of Buttermilk
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Right before I bake the bread, I like to sprinkle some flour on top to create an even more rustic looking bread!

Then you:

  1. Whisk together the flour, salt and baking soda.
  2. Create a “well” in the center of the dry ingredients and pour the buttermilk into it.
  3. Use your hands (cover with flour first!) and fold the buttermilk in with dry ingredients. *It will create a biscuit-like dough.
  4. Wash and re-flour your hands.
  5. Pick up the dough and place it on a floured cookie sheet.
  6. Going from the outside in, fold the dough together into a ball shape. *As you can see in the picture, the dough ball won’t be fluffy like other yeast risen doughs.
  7. Flatten the dough ball till it is 1 1/2 inches tall and cut a deep cross shape into the top to allow the dough to “breathe”.
  8. Cook for 20 minutes at 450°, then for another 20 minutes at 400°.
  9. Place on a cooling rack and enjoy!

Since I doubled the amount corned beef and cabbage we had, I knew we were going to have leftovers. The great thing about this bread is that it takes practically 5 minutes to throw together. So even though the first loaf disappeared on Sunday, I could quickly whip up another one for leftovers on Monday. Definitely a “must keep” recipe that will be added to the rest of the Draper household traditions!

Lauren

DIY: Mickey & Minnie Valentine’s Day Card

Valentine’s Day.

After searching the last couple of weeks for the perfect Valentine’s Day card for Blair, I gave up. I couldn’t find one… I know there are tons of cards out there, but most of them are too cheesy or just dumb, so I decided to make one myself.

Now, Blair and I are HUGE Disney fans. We love everything Disney – Blair even proposed to me at Disneyland! So it made sense to me to make something Mickey and Minnie related for Valentine’s Day…

To make a Mickey and Minnie Valentine’s Day Card, you’ll need:

  • A blank white card with an envelope *You can buy a pack of them at Walmart.
  • Black Sharpie
  • Red scrapbook paper
  • Scissor
  • Pencil
  • Glue stick
  • Images of a Mickey Mouse silhouette and a Minnie Mouse bow *I used simple ones I found off of Google – You’re just tracing the basic shape so they don’t need to look wonderful.
Valentine Card

Simply adorable!

To make the Mickey Card, just:

  1. Trace the Mickey silhouette onto the blank card with a pencil
  2. Carefully cut along the tracing

Then, to make the Minnie Bow:

  1. Trace the bow shape onto the piece of red paper
  2. Cut out
  3. Outline the bow shape with a Sharpie *Time to get creative! My bow is far from perfect, but I looked at a few bows online and just mimicked the outlines I saw.
  4. Glue the bow onto the inside right ear

Finally:

  1. Put your special message inside the card. Just make sure it is something from the heart!

After finishing this project, I literally got butterflies in my stomach. It makes me beyond happy and I’m so excited to watch Blair open the envelope and see this. I know he’ll LOVE it and I can’t wait to give it to him!

Lauren

Update: He LOVED it!