Foodie Friday: Italian Sausage & Tortellini “Stoup”

Even though we’re based in Florida,  I am obsessed with making heavy, comforting, savory meals. Though it is technically a soup, the sausage, cabbage and tortellini makes it heavy enough to ALMOST feel like a stew. Perhaps it’s the start of the new school year and my inner child is yearning for the cooler temperatures (not really…well, maybe a wee bit) but I always start to make this dish in September.

I experimented a lot with this dish because typically I’m not a fan of cabbage but when I omitted it, it lost much of it’s depth. I use sweet Italian sausages because 2 out of three children do not like anything spicy so if you like some heat, bring on the spicy sausage! When I went shopping, I normally look for a very small head of cabbage because I’ll use 1/2 to 3/4 and eliminate the rest. I hate wasting food, but again, I hate cabbage. When I went to the store the other day they only had freakishly large heads…like, 3 1/2 pounds! I couldn’t justify wasting so much food. So I went to the bagged salad area and got a bag of slaw which was the perfect amount. Not gonna lie, I didn’t like the consistency. I want my cabbage to be more coarsely chopped, less fine. It tasted fine. Just wasn’t the same.

Lastly, this goes great with some crusty bread and if you want, some Italian style croutons and/or Parmesan is GREAT on top of it.

This fed a family of 5 with some leftovers.

olive oil

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2 box cartons of Beef broth

b4RKiuSwansonBeefBrothLowSodium32oz

 

3 spoonfuls of tomato paste

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1 onion diced

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2 cloves garlic chopped

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1 very small head of cabbage or half of medium. chopped

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1 package of Italian sausage

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1 bag of frozen cheese tortellini

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Salt to taste

croutons, Parmesan and crusty bread (optional)

Brown the sausages in a frying pan with a splash of olive oil on medium heat. Take your time browning all sides so that it partially cooks inside. Take of the pan and reserve to the side.

Next add a splash more olive oil (if needed) and brown your onions and garlic. While this is happening, start cutting your sausages into bite size disks. Add to the pan.

Next empty both cartons of broth and 3 spoonfuls of tomato paste into a large pot. Bring to a light boil. Add cabbage and onion/garlic/sausage mixture. Reduce heat to medium high. Cook for 5 minutes. Add frozen tortellini and turn off heat. Let it sit for 10 minutes.

I find that when I cook the tortellini over heat on this dish, it gets mushy quickly and I want it to be firm.

Season to taste.

 

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Beautiful Thursday: Truth and Lies About Olaplex

“Olaplex is a bond multiplier containing a single active ingredient, Bis-Aminopropyl Diglycol Dimaleate. Olaplex works by finding single sulfur hydrogen bonds and cross linking them back together to form disulfide bonds before, during and after services. Disulfide bonds are broken via chemical, thermal, and mechanical processes.” ~ Olaplex.com

By Danni Gess

 

In the hair industry, there is a mystical aura surrounding this product. Over the past year we have seen Youtube videos, Instagram pictures and glossy magazine articles that extol the products benefits, but is it really the stuff of fairy dust, unicorn blood and dragon scales or is it just another product promising the world and delivering nothing?

Let me first preface this by saying that I use this product, not only on many of my clients but on myself as well. I am a natural level 5 and have an obsession with being REALLY blonde. Over the years, particularly before I became a colorist, I had pushed limits to try and achieve this blonde including an unfortunate incident where my hair fell out like needles on a old Christmas tree.

For many blondes this is a real thing. Over highlighting, too strong a lightener, flat ironing, can create a big fat plate of spaghetti hair.

Spaghetti Hair :  /spəˈɡedē her/ (n) Hair that has a disintegrated  cuticle which leaves the hair feeling slimy when wet. When dried, this hair typically falls away.

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When presented a new product, I am the first person I test it on. Nothing goes on my client’s head until I am certain that it is a product that will add value to their service. For An addition to a color service starting at $15 ($30 for the take home) I wanted to feel confident that Olaplex is something that will bring results. So, based SOLELY on my own head of hair (though I’ve done hundreds services with the product) here is what it can and cannot do.

  1. It CAN protect your hair from unneccessary damage….when used responsibly. When I do my roots, I am using Olaplex. There are times when, inevitably, the lightener overlaps onto my previously lightened hair. In the “old days” this would create some hair breakage. Luckily, having a short funky haircut helps with this because it goes unnoticeable. However, now I can honestly say I have no breakage. To the point that I’m seriously considering growing my hair out, which I will only do if I have healthy hair.

  2. Olaplex is NOT a conditioning treatment. My hair is still dry. This does not shock me. Not once have I read that Olaplex claim it is a conditioning treatment or a mask. So if your stylist is claiming it will put moisture in your hair…refer him/her to this blog.
  3. Your hair will NOT be Teflon after using it in a chemical service. Olaplex has strengthened my hair over time because I use the #3 home care product. Olaplex IS going to give extra insurance when lightening your hair BUT when you get home and style with heat and exposure to environmental elements, your hair gets damaged. If you need to strengthen your hair, maintain what you invested in by using the number #3 at home product. It last about a month (I have short hair so it lasted MUCH longer)
  4. Olaplex works BUT if you are putting olaplex/lightener onto spaghetti hair and expect a miracle, I have a bridge I can sell you! Do yourself a favor. If you have mushy overprocessed hair, go to a salon, do an Olaplex treatment, purchase the at home #3 and a good mask. Stylists, when they come back in a month, not only will you be able to SAFELY work with their hair but you will have a client for life!
  5. Alas, It is NOT made of unicorn blood, fairy dust nor dragon scales. It’s just science which is equally awesome. However, don’t get confused. It ain’t magic. When people start claiming it can do stuff that it is not designed to do, it makes my job difficult. Not only do I wind up having clients that are disappointed when rainbows and sparkles aren’t glinting off their noggin, but as an industry, it creates a culture of mistrust.

Lastly, I have a little bit of friendly advice for my fellow stylists. I understand that we all learn differently and sometimes having someone TELL you how to do something seems reliable but seriously, not everybody knows what they are talking about. AND you are the person that suffers the consequence if you do not use the product correctly. Personally, I did this crazy thing called “reading the directions” and “research”. You’d be shocked at how awesome these two actions can be!

Have you used this product? What was your experience? Have questions?

COMMENT! LIKE! FOLLOW!

Lipstick Lust

By Misti Blu Day

 

1) NYX Soft Matte Lip Cream in Monte Carlo: High pigments and soft with lasting wear that does not crack or peel. This line is my favorite matte series.   Shop

2) Sigma gloss in Lip Vex: The Lip Vex contains a smooth, creamy finish and long-wearing shine for versatility and everyday glamour. Paraben-free. Shop

3) Revlon Color Burst Matte Balm in Audacious: Another great matte series that does not flake unless you are like me and wear it for days. If that is the case I suggest with any lipstick to apply a chapstick basecoat so your lips do not dry out. And instead of reapplying, wipe off and start over or any product it will get cakey and gummy overtime. I love the bright pigment. Perfect orangey shade to mix it up. Shop

4) Baby Lips by Maybelline in Crystal Kiss: This is my go to basecoat to prevent drying out my lips and also for evening, before bed wear. Lipcare is important to maintain moisturize so that you are able to wear highly pigmented lip colors on the daily. Shop

5) MAC Lipstick in Rebel: I go through this color like I do my hot sauce. I am already almost out again. I love this rich plum shade. Hands down my alltime favorite.   Shop

Street Style Saturday-Psychedelic Summer

Electric Oranges is Carly Sinigoi and Sarah Starling from Brevard County in Florida. It is a pop up style shop filled with vintage, up cycles and modern couture apparel straight from the Sunshine State. Their collection features items that span several decades and their tastes are impeccable and fun.

  

Danielle Gess, Theresa Lanno and Misti Blu Day where the hair and makeup team for this shoot. We got ready at The Big Bang Studio and took this set outside of the studio. Photos are by Misti Blu Photography and of course wardrobe and styling by Electric Oranges. We came together to collaborate on a few ideas. Stay tuned for our Street Style Saturday, which will be dedicated to sharing these delicious shoots as well as including information on how to track down Electric Oranges.

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You can see their next pop up here:

  
October 10th 9am-5pm

Rehab Vintage Revival
Highland Ave, Downtown Eau Gallie
Large variety of vendors

Foodie Friday: Simple 4 Ingredient Broccoli Aioli Pasta

There was a point in my life that I was a dedicated vegan. It lasted a good four years and I was probably the healthiest I ever was but I was in a part time job and was able to commit the time to making fresh, tasty, nutrient dense foods.
As I fell into the fast paced world of full time jobs, school aged kids and messy houses, my commitment waned and I had resorted to quick meals.

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This particular recipe had survived the “change of life” due to its simplicity, flavor and my children’s desire to eat it. By cooking the broccoli with the pasta the flavors all get infused, the shell pasta becomes little cup holders of deliciousness and the broccoli medallions gives an added texture that is surprisingly delightful.

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Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 15 minutes

1 bunch of broccoli
2 tablespoons olive oil
3 small to median cloves of garlic
Shell pasta or Barilla Collezione shell pasta.
Salt to taste

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Start a large pot of water to boil.
Cut of the heads off the broccoli and peel the tough outer skin of the stems (with either a peeler or a knife) cut the stems to create disks/medallions and throw in the pot.
Next, chop the broccoli heads into small bite size pieces and throw in pot with the stems.
When the water begins to boil and the broccoli has taken on a slightly brighter hue, add the pasta in to the pot as well, stirring occasionally to ensure nothing sticks.
Follow manufacturers directions for time cooked (personally, I like al dente)
While its cooking, take two to three garlic cloves, peel off outer layer and smash with the flat of your chopping knife the chop into tiny pieces.
As pasta finishes cooking, get a large measuring cup and reserve about one cup of the water that the pasta/broccoli mixture cooked in. Set aside. Then drain pasta and return to pot.
Heat olive oil in pan and add garlic. When the garlic just starts to really sizzle, turn off heat. Cooking too long can create a slightly bitter taste.
Pour over pasta and add the reserved cup of water. Season with salt and Stir well.
Serve with some shredded Parmesan.

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Tell us what you think!

Beautiful Thursday – 30 Day Cleanse?

By Misti Blu Day

 

Sorry in advance, but I just cannot jump on whatever current cleanse or fitness bandwagon is “in” at the moment. It is not that I would rather shove a cupcake in my mouth over a packet of intensly flavored nutrition and yellow number 5 that will make me shit my brains out all morning… Wait, maybe I would rather eat the cupcake.


I just cannot wrap my head around artificial flavored packets to pour into my water and then try to sell the brand off to my friends.  I do not like sweets very often and the flavores for the packets and shakes are always desserty. Slim Fast is the original gangster. Then we had shakeology. Now, Advocare. But first… To each their own! I am not knocking it. It just in not for me.


When I get on a health kick I simply just do healthy things like take vitamins, drink lots of water, eat healthy, exercise. Occasionally I will load up a smoothie with Green Vibrance, which I get at the local health food store.


I put it in my smoothie, also loaded with blueberries and spinach, bee pollen, kefir and whatever other healthy shit I have on hand. I call it the Darth Vader smoothie because of the color. It is actually quite delicious and for someone who cannot do breakfast, it works!


Honestly, the last time I made a smothie was quite awhile ago. I just started trying to get in shape again. The point of this post is to inspire myself and others to get back on the health kick. What works best for me is to ease into it, otherwise I feel like a failure the first mistake or set back I have. Plus, changing your lifestyle can make you drag your feet because it can be overwhelming, which is why I started the 30 day challenge to ease yourself into a healthy lifestyle.


Week One:

  • No Booze! FML right? It is pretty tough considering that most activities seem to revolve around drinking but just stick to it. Let your friends know so they don’t come over with a bottle of wine or ask you to meet them at the pub this weekend. I reached out to Facebook friends about doing non-drinking activities after spending my week at home being antisocial and was pleasantly surprised at how many people were down! Kayaking, bike rides, painting, a good old fashioned movie… The options are limitless!
  • Drink 16oz of water when you wake up. I am an advid water drinker but mostly later in the day and at night. I never drink water in the morning unless it is an extra large iced caramel macchiato with extra caramel drizzle, please!
  • That is it for week 1. I lost 6 pounds just from that. I did a 1 minute wall sit and about 20 squats per day. Since I was not having my typical shots of Jameson on Tuesday and Saturday, I rewarded myself with wings and cupcakes in bed.  

Week Two

  • I am going to continue everything from week one but no eating after midnight add this routine everyday:


Week Three: 

  • Breakfast. No eating after midnight began last week. I think that was my favorite time to eat! RIP midnight snacks! Breakfast was never a thing for me unless it was at noon. If you are not a breakfast person first thing in the morning then go the smoothie route. Breakfast means Break (the) Fast from going all night without food. It is very important.
  • Continue steps from week one and two. Notice that we are weaning ourselves into a healthy lifestyle!?
  • Cut out all fried food and lower your sugar intake. I replaced my iced loaded caramel crack coffees with herbal tea.  

Week Four:

  • Continue ever from week 1-3 and make sure you are drinking plenty of water.
  • At this point, you may reward yourself with a glass of wine or a cold beer. Everything in moderation! Going back out to the bars and doing shots will not keep the weight off. Some people allow themselves a “cheat day.” Icall mine Sinning Sunday.
  • Become more active. In addition to the daily home workout, go on a brisk walk, go kayaking, whatever works for you.
  • Stay healthy. Do healthy things. Think healthy thoughts.

Good luck!

Wanderlust Wednesday – Michigan with Theresa Lanno

Beer • Football • Camaraderie 

Those are the 3 words that describe Michigan and it’s pretty awesome to feel a part of it. It is ranked #5 for the most breweries in the nation. I went to one called Olde Peninsula and had a flight.
From left to right:

  
Sierra Rose Raspberry out of Grand Rapids

Monks Sour Ale 

Cider Boys Draft

Obren Wheat Ale

All Local! My favorite was the Raspberry. 

    
Tacos from Old Burdick’s Bar and Grill

BEEF TACOS: Barbacoa beef, queso fresco, lettuce, pico de gallo, creamy chipotle sauce. 

   
 
The BEST fried pickles I have ever had at Olde Peninsula Brewpub in Kalamazoo. On Saturday and Sunday they have brunch specials till 2pm. I ordered the Irish Dubler.

 

Michigan goes from suburbs to city life within 10 minutes. My boyfriend’s mom lives on the most beautiful peaceful lake in Battle Creek, called Lake Pine. Simply Gorgeous! 

  
  

  
15 Minutes up the street, I was sitting on a rooftop in Kalamazoo looking over the most beautiful city ever. A college town,  but classy fun and unexpectedly inexpensive! The Wild Bull was my favorite bar by far. If you’re in your early 20s you will love Grotto or AFB (Another Fucking Bar).

  

They do something a “shotski” Everyone takes a shot at the same time off of a ski! It was entertaining and really messy, but a must try. Duh! 

  
If you live in Michigan, you love Michigan and you most likely love football! It’s very endearing. The camaraderie is nothing like I have ever seen! It just is was it is! I’m learning little by little but the big rivalry seems to be State or Michigan and they take it SERIOUSLY! Oh, and if you like Ohio state don’t tell anyone! Oh yeah, ask for “pop” not “soda.”  Everyone  loves Mountain Dew and everyone will take out their hand to show you were they live. 

  
  
My trip to Michigan was the best of both worlds, I loved it! Awesome nightlife, peaceful lakes, and great people. Everyone is so nice. I had 4 girls come up to me to say that they like my hair or that I was pretty! That doesn’t happen in Florida ever. After dinner, at my boyfriend’s mother’s house, her neighbor brought us a fresh raspberry pie right from her garden! She told me she brings her stuff every week. I would do nothing but eat here. All the food was amazing! 

  

So yes, I’ve become “a little smitten with the mitten.”