Style spotlight: The denim jacket

There are certain items that every woman should have and a denim jacket is one of them. There is something about a denim jacket that is stylish yet casual. Denim jackets lost their cool after the 90's but they have since made their way back into the fashion world. You can wear them with almost anything from dresses to pants. I wore mine with a long skirt and flats for a relaxed look, perfect for a quick run to the mall.


What I am wearing
Denim jacket: Charlotte Russe (similar)
High/Low Midi Skirt: Banana Republic
Flats: Tory Burch

Ground turkey and Farro stuffed cabbage

If you haven't tried stuffed cabbage you are missing out on a very tasty meal. This dish was something I never thought of making until I saw Food Network Chef Ina Garten prepare it on her show. I find it to be a great alternative to Lasagne especially if you are on a low calorie diet. Imagine biting into a cabbage roll stuffed with meat and topped with a garlicky homemade tomato sauce...delish
 The dish sounds intimidating but it is pretty simple to make. The pictures below will give you an idea of what to expect. Serve it with a nice glass of red wine and enjoy!
1 pound ground beef or turkey
1 large cabbage head
1/2 a cup 10 minute Farro
1 egg
3 cups crushed tomatoes
2 onions
6 cloves garlic
1 medium carrot
1 stalk celery
2 cups chicken broth
1 handful fresh parsley
1 handful fresh basil
1 tbsp dried Italian herb mix
1 1/2 tbsp steak seasoning
1 tsp worcesteshire sauce
salt and freshly ground pepper
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Pulse carrot, 1/2 onion, 4 cloves garlic and celery in a food processor till fine and cook for 5 minutes in a saucepan.
- Add crushed tomatoes and 1 cup chicken broth to the onion mix followed by salt, pepper and dried herbs.
- Reduce heat and simmer for at least 30 minutes.
- Cook Farro per package directions. I used the 10 minute Farro from Trader Joe's
- While sauce is cooking remove core from cabbage and place in a large pot with salted water. Make sure the entire cabbage is in water and boil for 10 minutes.
- Once cabbage leaves are soft, remove from water and separate leaves. Placing them in cold water will prevent them from being too soggy.
- In a large bowl mix ground meat, cooked farro, 1/2 diced onion, remaining minced garlic, egg, steak seasoning, Worcesteshire sauce, pepper and half the parsley.
- Slice second onion and layer slices in a 9 x 13 greased pyrex dish.
- Stuff each cabbage leaf with meat mixture and place each roll on top of the onions.
- Add remaining parsley and basil to sauce then pour over cabbage rolls.
- Cook for 1 hour and serve. I grated a little parmesan cheese and garnished the rolls with chopped parsley before serving.

Smart shopping featuring Plaid and Denim

If shopping was my profession I would have won numerous awards for outstanding performance...well at least that's what I tell myself. A great shopper is someone that can get more for less and still look fab without sacrificing quality. The key is to take your time and avoid paying full price. I seriously don't remember the last time I got something that wasn't on sale. This whole look cost me around $50 for good quality items.
What I'm wearing:
Plaid shirt: TJ Maxx $10
Levi Jeans: Macys sale plus coupon $18.99
Nine West heels: Macys sale with coupon $24.99
Please note items may no longer be on sale, but remember to be patient and don't pay full price!

Easy and delicious braised lamb shank recipe

Now that fall is here I have started making more comfort food like curries and stews. It has always been a tradition of mine to make a slow cooked meal every Sunday. I like to make my Sunday meals early in the morning so that I have the rest of the day to chill. Nothing like relaxing on a Sunday with beautiful aromas coming from the kitchen and the promise of a great meal later. 

I have used this braised lamb shank recipe so many times and its perfect for a cold fall or winter night. Cooking the shanks for at least 2 hours in a wine and herb infused broth is what increases the delish factor of this dish. 

2 medium sized lamb shanks
1/2 cup red wine
3 cups chicken broth
3 tbsp tomato paste
1 cup crushed tomatoes
1 onion 
3 large garlic cloves
1 medium carrot
1 stalk celery
1 handful of fresh rosemary and thyme
salt and freshly ground pepper
1 tbsp flour

- Preheat oven to 350 degrees
- Season the lamb shanks generously with salt and pepper followed by a dusting of flour. 
- Heat olive oil in dutch oven and brown the lamb shanks
- While the shanks are browning pulse onion, garlic, carrot and celery in a food processor. 
- Remove shanks from dutch oven and sautee' the onion mix for about 3 minutes. Return shanks into the dutch oven and add wine.  
- After wine has reduced add tomato paste, crushed tomatoes and cook for another 2 minutes then add chicken broth.
- Add the fresh herbs over the shanks, cover and cook in the oven for about 2 hours. 
- Serve with rice, mashed potatoes or polenta. 

1 simple way to layer with stripes this fall

Yesterday was the first day of fall which is bittersweet as I am going to miss the warm sunny days but at the same time I am looking forward to fall fashion. Fall means layering and what better way to start than with this fab striped dress. I have heard about stripe on stripe layering but I say the best way to layer with stripes is with a bold color. Doing this creates a clean and elegant look. I paired this black and white striped dress with a black blazer and black heels.

What I'm wearing:
Blazer: Club Monaco
Shoes: Jimmy Choo