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Dinner for 7

This is probably the only week of the entire year where I will think, “Nooooo it’s Thursday already!”  I am so sad that there are only two days left of my vacation :(.  Yesterday was another glorious day on the beach, the water warmed back up and we were actually able to tolerate it for more than 30 seconds.  My uncle and cousin borrowed a kayak from some of our beach neighbors and went on a little ocean adventure.

It was hilarious to watch them tip over and try to get back in the kayak, a good 10 minutes of entertainment.  To beat the heat, my sister and I drug our chairs down to the water and sat at the edge of it.  The breeze coming off the ocean really helped to keep us cool.  As of right now, I’ve finished two books and am about to start book number three.  You really cannot beat reading on the beach in my opinion.  Here are some other pics from the beach yesterday.

bf and I

beach horse shoes

abandoned kayak

Then I took on the task of cooking dinner, including appetizer, for the entire family.  On the menu?  Spinach and artichoke dip, sweet potato fries, taco salad, and grilled Caribbean Jerk chicken.  All of my favorite things, and everything was a hit.

Gorgonzola Spinach and Artichoke Dip

  • 2 10 oz boxes chopped frozen spinach
  • 1 box frozen artichoke hearts (I used 1 can)
  • 3 tbsp butter
  • 4 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 3 tbsp flour
  • 1 cup chicken stock
  • 1 cup milk
  • salt and pepper
  • pinch of nutmeg
  • 1 cup Gorgonzola crumbles
  • 1 1/2 cup shredded Parm

Defrost the spinach, and then wring out the water.  Melt the butter in a large pot, add the garlic and stir for 1-2 minutes.  Add the flour and combine for 1 minute more.  Whisk in the stock and milk, add the pepper, salt, and nutmeg, and allow to thicken.  Remove the pot from the heat and add the Gorgonzola cheese.  Stir in the spinach and artichokes, 1/2 of the Parm cheese, and then transfer to a casserole dish.  Cover the dip with the remaining half of the parm.  Cook at 400 degrees for 10-12 minutes and serve.

I served some Stacy’s pita crisps and tortilla chips with it.  For the sweet potato fries, I added some olive oil, cinnamon, and nutmeg to a plastic bag and then added the sweet potatoes and shook it up.

Spread out onto two baking sheets, and cooked at 425 degrees for 30 minutes.  Some people use Paprika and not nutmeg, but I really enjoy the cinnamon/nutmeg combo.

ready for eatin!

Then I got to work on the taco salad, while the men took care of the chicken outside on the grill.

brownin the meat

grill grill grill!

taco salad

This taco salad is so easy and delicious.  All you do is brown some ground beef with a packet of taco seasoning, and then add it to some iceberg lettuce.  This also had two tomatoes, and some Monterey Jack cheese.  We use a Light Katalina dressing, but Ranch is good as well.  You can also add in some crushed up tortilla chips, but since we ate a lot of them with the dip, we left them out this time.  Dinner was a success, and we ate almost everything.  I am not cooking for the rest of the week now, haha.

This morning, my sis, bf, and I went out for another run.  We did another 3 miles, which brings my vacation workout total mileage to 9 miles so far!  If you take into consideration that I did exactly 0 miles of running on my last vacation, this is a big improvement.  Alright well I’m off to make some lunches, pack up the cooloer, and head to the beach!  I hope everyone has a great Thursday!

19 Responses

  1. I have GOT to make those sweet potato fries.

    Sorry your vacation’s coming to an end – now I can stop being jealous of you every day! 😉

  2. I think you totally earned the right to not cook the rest of your time there… that meal looks AWESOME. I love taco salad…

  3. love your hair in the picture where its curly!

    and thats some amazing food. enjoy your last bit of vacation!

  4. So glad you’re enjoying your vacation!!! Have a great time for the last few days…I hate the end of trips :-**(

  5. Noo! I don’t want your vacation to end!! But the dinner looks great!

  6. So fun! I am glad you are having a great (and well deserved) vacation! I love your hair curly…I wish mine did that. I end up getting some nasty half curl/half wavy friz ball from hell! ha! 🙂

  7. You are my kind of girl!! That spinach dip looks heavenly and you just can’t beat sweet potato fries!! Glad you’re soaking it all up and enjoying your vacay!! 🙂

  8. Aww that is such a pit in your tummy feeling, I hate vacation endings! But you are THERE and I am behind my work desk! lol I would give anything for just a weekend to get away but I have to wait till August for that 😦

  9. Mmmm, taco salad! Gotta put that on the list of things I want to make now that I’m eating meat again. Your dip looks awesome too!

  10. Everything looks delicious. Especially the taco salad. I’ll have to make that soon. Enjoy the rest of your vacation.

  11. Love your bikini! The sweet potato fries look yummy!! I always use butternut squash, but I’ll have to try sweet potatoes!

  12. You and your bf are such a smashin’ good lookin couple 🙂 and congrats on the mileage 🙂

  13. That meal looks so good!! I need to try that spinach and artichoke dip.

    Its always so sad when vacations are over. I keep trying to convince my boss to pay me to stay home, but he just wont do it!

  14. 9 miles on vacation is very impressive. So far, Ive done 3. It might not get any higher than that!

    I love reading on the beach too. What books did you read?

  15. Where is you blog?? I have been living vicariously through your vacation! Can’t wait to hear more details about your trip!
    I have ONE vacation every year in OCMD .. lil nervous can’t lie .. first time with out my ex bf. Parts of me think I am nervous/scared bc I am not over him 😦
    Anxiety over vacation? who does that?

  16. 9 miles on vacation? that’s ballin. i usually do 0.

  17. […] Made a huge dinner for my entire family […]

  18. […] the stove and make dinner.  When I was at the store on Sunday, I picked up the ingredients for my favorite salad of all time and couldn’t wait to stuff it in my […]

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