Glee Live! (and yes, I acted like a 12 year old girl...)

Tuesday, June 28, 2011 - 
At the beginning of June, bestie and I made our way downtown to Conseco to see Glee Live!    I think the television show is just amusing and the people are extremely talented in both dance and song.  I didn't really know what to anticipate with the show, but it really was concert.  I haven't really been to a 'pop' show before, but I can imagine this is as close as I will get, screaming girl fans and all that jazz.  It was a great girls night - really an amazing show - here are a few photos and videos for your enjoyment.

I know they are slightly younger than me (and yes, I mean slightly!), but these boys still make me (and the twelve year old girls) swooon...

I have to admit, I 'gleeked' out like a 12 year old girl when the Warblers surprised the audience.  Fantastic.

Hope you enjoyed!

Coconut French Toast with Grilled Pineapple

Tuesday, June 21, 2011 - 
I love having breakfast for dinner.  Pancakes, bacon (mmm...popovers), eggs - I love it all anytime of the day.   I was flipping through the June issue of Cooking Light and came across the Coconut French Toast with Grilled Pineapple.  Well, we had just a bought a pineapple!  Hubs loves pineapple, and he is a coconut fan too, so I thought we'd give it try.

  • 1 c. light coconut milk
  • 1/4 c. sugar
  • 1/4 c. skim milk
  • 3 large eggs
  • French bread, sliced (about 1/2 inch thick, though it says 1/4)
  • Pineapple, sliced
  • 1/2 c. sweetened coconut (I omitted this - didn't have any on hand)
The recipe was quite simple, one of those, "I should have thought of that!" type of easy recipes.  I began by whisking together the coconut milk, sugar, milk, and eggs.  I soaked the French bread slices and then browned on a griddle until done.

While I was doing that, hubs sliced up the pineapple and grilled it until it had some great marks.  I plated the French toast while hubs cut up the pineapple to top them.  Since we didn't have any coconut, I couldn't flake this on top.  Another great idea would be to add some toasted almonds on top, giving it a nutty crunch.

The French toast was great, subtly sweet with a nice crust.  A light but extremely flavorful dish, a serving was only 394 calories (serving is three slices).  This would also be a great brunch idea for the summer - outside on the patio - nom!

A Meal of Bacon

Thursday, June 16, 2011 - 
I had been craving a popover since my friend's wedding back in February.  Okay, you may ask yourself, how does someone just start craving a popover at a wedding?  Well, this is because Maggie and Paul had their first date at Judie's in Amherst, and Judie's is locally famous for their popovers.  So when I think of their history, Judie's is part of that history.

I, like many omnivores, love bacon.  Salty and crispy, with a salad or a dessert, bacon can be used in just about anything.   We were making a spinach and hot bacon salad for dinner (a different version than this, I reverted back to my original style) and I thought...bacon popovers!  I knew I couldn't make them Judie style - large and abundant, but I could make a smaller version quite easily.

  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup milk (I used skim)
  • 1 tbls. vegetable oil
  • 1 c. flour (all purpose)
  • salt
  • bacon

A basic popover is quite easy to make, then you can jazz it up anyway you like.  I mixed up the eggs, milk and oil before beating in the flour and a dash of salt.  I poured the simple batter into a greased muffin pan (to ensure they all bake evenly, I filled the empty spots with water) and then sprinkled crumbled bacon top.  These baked for about 20 minutes in the oven (set at 400 degrees), maybe a little less, but right around the time they are golden brown and puffed up.

Hubs hadn't had a popover before, and he gobbled multiple popover 'muffins' up that evening.  I love the texture, almost spongy but extremely airy.  And the bacon gave them the perfect salty and savory flavor I was looking for.

Any other thoughts on how to dress up a popover?

A Wedding in Elmhurst

Wednesday, June 15, 2011 - 
One of my best friends (who was also one of my bridesmaids) married her the love of her life at the beautiful and historical Wilder Mansion in Elmhurst, Illinois.  It couldn't have been a better day - beautiful, bright, sunny and full of love.

The mansion was gorgeous, full of nooks that had beautiful character.  One room was perfect for the personalized ceremony as the couple became Mr. & Mrs., another perfect for the couple's first dance and delicious cake cutting, another for appetizers and mimosa's.  A room for every perfect touch of the perfect day.  And when you add a beautiful bride, a glowing groom, friends and family, the mansion becomes complete.

I couldn't be more happy for Desiree and Jordan - they both were glowing with affection for one another.  It was one of those weddings where you know the couple is perfect together.  You know they'll grow old together, loving each other more and more as the years go by.

Congratulations Desiree & Jordan.  Honored to be part of your day and celebrate your love!

A (Fresh) Mexican Fiesta

Tuesday, June 14, 2011 - 
I've been craving Mexican.  Maybe it is the weather warming up and the thought of chips and salsa on the balcony with a margarita in hand.  I love the spicy flavors that are cooled with guacamole and citrus.  Fresh Mexican food - amazing.

Rather than a meatless Monday, we opted for Mexican Monday.  I, like my friend Michelle over at Fun & Fearless, had found a quick and easy recipe for roasted salsa in Everyday Food (visit Michelle's site for a step-by-step, or check out the June issue!)  I gathered the ingredients and whipped it together - fresh, amazing and quick.  I spiced it up a bit more and added a bit more garlic, but it really was amazing.  I'll definitely make it again.

Our main item was going to be chicken taquitos.  Hubs seasoned some broth and poached a few chicken tenderloins.  Once they were poached, we shredded it with forks and then added some of the salsa I made.  Cumin and Monterey Jack cheese were mixed in before being rolled in corn tortillas.  We baked them in the oven while we finished the grilled corn and black bean salad.

The salad was a creation of our own - just threw some things together.  I sauteed up an onion with garlic and added the black beans.  While I was doing that, hubs had grilled a few cobs of corn that he stripped down and added to the mix.  A tomato and some cilantro, this cooled down in the fridge while everything else came together.

It was a light and refreshing meal.  I love summer and all the fresh ingredients that make meals like this satisfying!

Disney World Continued...

Monday, June 13, 2011 - 
This post is extremely delayed.  As I mentioned, work is extremely busy right now.  Sometimes life gets busy.  It just happens.  With work, I've been working at home in the evenings as well to ensure all is set for our upcoming event.  That means, not as much time for blogging.  But alas, I'm slowly getting back into it (though I can guarantee I'll be better in July).

Just wanted to share a few more photos from Disney.  We really had a great time with our close friends Sean and Melinda.  We visited Animal Kingdom, Magic Kingdom, Hollywood Studios, Blizzard Beach and, my favorite, Epcot.  Lots of great food (which you can ready about over at City Nom Noms), entertaining rides and amusing shows - building on memories and making new ones.  I love Disney, I can't help it, it is the happiest place on earth after all!

We also went to Universal Studios for some Harry Potter love.

It was really hard to come back - I'm still having withdrawals.  For some reason, it was really hard to come back.  Not the normal "I don't want vacation to end" but different - like what's next?  I guess we'll see...

The Zoo: A Break in the Life of a Busy Person

Wednesday, June 8, 2011 - 
Yup, I've been very busy at work.  My big event is coming up and I've been working day and night.  I love it though - I really love what I do.

And because I've been working so much, I'm hoping you can help me and a friend enjoy a night off.  We have entered a competition to win tickets to the Indianapolis Zoo's annual event - Zoobilation.  It is an eating frenzy, full of Indy's best food, complimentary drinks and entertainment.  A black-tie gala, everyone dresses up only to wear flip flops with their outfit (you are walking around the zoo people...)
That's me in 2009 at Zoobilation with a delish Red Velvet cupcake, compliments of The Flying Cupcake

To help out, I just need you to 'like' our comment (look for Melinda Mettler) and Qdoba Indy's Facebook page.  That is it - no donation, nothing.  Just a simple click of the finger!  If you aren't a social media happy person (or if you want to pass this around to friends who aren't - please do so, pimp us out!), here are some basic instructions:
  •  Visit (If you are not logged into Facebook, it will ask you to do so at this time.)
  •  At the top of the page, click the "Like" button next to Qdoba Central Indiana.
  •  This will take you to the page for Qdoba Central Indiana. 
  •  On the left hand side of the screen, click on the "Wall" button.
  •  Find MELINDA STARBUCK METTLER's comment on the wall (it may be near the top or farther down the page, depending on how many people keep posting).
  •  Click "Like" underneath my comment.
That's it - nothing more!  I would appreciate any and all of your help!  Pass the word - we are currently in third place.  Contest ends tomorrow (Thursday) at 10:00 a.m. eastern standard time.

Thank your help - hopefully we get to attend and I can recap all the food love for you!

Disney's International Flower & Garden Festival - Part 2

Thursday, June 2, 2011 - 
Future world had some great flowers, but I really loved all the flowers from the World Showcase - the characters matched the country so it made it a little bit more fun to me.  Here they are:
Outside of Norway - fun troll!

Panda's in China

The Lion King characters in the 'South African' region
Snow White and the infamous 7 in Germany
Not made out of flowers, but Tangled was represented during the festival in Germany as well
Lady & the Tramp - Italy
Aladdin in Morocco

Beauty, Belle & the Crew in France
The princesses were between France and the United Kingdom.  All were beautiful - was happy to see them!