Follow Friday: Vina Sananikone

I know, I’ve mentioned her often. Vina. She is my friend, a photographer, a blogger, a media maven, a food enthusiast, a graphic designer…shes is everything. I love her. And you probably will too. She also has WAAAAAAAAAAAAY too many blogs to keep track of. But I will link you to lemonade lists because she just made fried green tomatoes and carolina shrimp sliders that basically would make you want to marry her. Shoot, she wants to marry herself.

End of Summer Vacation

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Its our last big trip of the year. Fall and winter is time to focus, and stay home and be cozy. I can’t believe I was here 6 months ago, and now we are going back. I love it. Bahamas has become our special place.

This time we opted for NO rental car (its too confusing to drive there, we almost died last time) and we are staying on Paradise Island. This is because we ended up driving there everyday last time so this time we might as well just stay there. I’m excited to go back to the island and gets some R&R.

Then when I get back, I will buckle down and start a cooking schedule. Let’s do work son!

Are you guys having any end of summer last trips?

Tuesday 10: Follow Your Dreams

I love all of these quotes. Just reading them again, all in one place is just another bump of inspiration and motivation. My favorite of this set, is “Start where you are. Use what you have. Do what you can.” – Arthur Ashe. This hits home because honestly, you have to start somewhere, and don’t get discouraged if you don’t have what you need to chase your dreams. Nothing is given, so you gotta do your best, because your best is good enough!

What’s for Dinner: Smokey Bleu Pizza

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Do you love pizza? My husband does. And as a die hard teenage mutant ninja turtle fan, I too love pizza. Fireworks pizza in Leesburg, is his favorite spot for his favorite pizza. Its a wood fired pizza with gargonzola, bacon and a balsamic reduction. Since I love a challenge…I tried to recreate it at home. It was a SUCCESS! Here’s how you too can have a fancy pizza for dinner.

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Start off with pizza dough. Let’s be real here, if you wanted to cook this for dinner tonight, you would have bought pizza dough. Because that’s what I did, from trader joes. EO6Ee2A8WH2qAxSn.jpg

Flatten it out. Really thin. I like to make two pies from one bag of dough to ensure a thin crust. Then I bake it slightly, without toppings, to make dinner ready, faster without worrying if my dough is cooked all the way through. While you do this, cook 6 slices of bacon until most of the fat is rendered out. Don’t cook all the way through though!YyOYFE1H9Yx79mqa.jpg

Slice half an onion into these ringlets (is that what they are called?) and caramelize them…in.the.bacon.fat. hz4ZWhRuBCS92zKs.jpg

Sauce up your pizza crust. Again, store bought pizza sauce from trader joes. He’s the man.2r1Vi7Ukwy9XEBpD.jpg

A little mozzarella to give a good base.5cAdWUZv8s8ZIa1v.jpg

Bacon. You probably don’t need a picture of every step, but I was going to make it into an animation, then changed my mind.d6MVSmRFIc5syCxh.jpg

Caramelized onion rings.jnUbbeUDEETEii2P.jpg

Pockets of gargonzola, that will melt into gooey deliciousness. Bold statement from someone who does not like any time of bleu cheese.zSC0MXjAWI3ReIDr.jpg

Something different, but works well. Shrimp. medium sized, pre cooked. bvXAVrppbtMQ9RV3.jpgTop it with a little more mozzarella and sprinkle of fresh rosemary. Because it works. Bake for about 7 minutes. Drizzle balsamic reduction… throw it back in there for another 3 minutes. Serve hot.

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 Smokey Bleu Fancy Pizza
Ingredients

1 packaged of ready to cook pizza dough
6 bacon slices
1/2 sweet onion, thinly sliced
1/4 cup of pizza sauce (more or less depending on how saucy you like your pizza)
1/2 cup shredded mozzarella
1/4 cup of Gorgonzola crumbles
20 medium cooked shrimp
1 TBS fresh rosemary, chopped
Balsamic Vinegar reduction/Glaze

Directions:
Preheat oven to 450F. Roll out the pizza dough into a nice thin crust. Bake for 5 minutes, flip then bake for another 5 minutes. Pull it out and set aside to cool.

Cook the bacon strips until ALMOST done. Most of the fat should be rendered out. Set aside on paper towels to remove excess grease.

Assemble the pizza. Tomato sauce, mozzarella, then the additional toppings. Sprinkle a little rosemary at the end, then bake for 7 minutes. Drizzle balsamic glaze and pop it back in for another 3 minutes.

ENJOY!