All posts by EssentiallyErika

Parmesan Roasted Rosemary Potatoes

Parmesan Roasted Rosemary Potatoes

Potato, Po-tah-toe… 

There, I said it. That dirty word anyone on somewhat of a carb-free diet is afraid to say. Whichever way you say it, it’s packed with starch. It’s also one of my favorite root vegetables. Yes, there are tons of other really yummy veggies that are much healthier for you. But, when I’m looking to indulge in a little comfort food, potatoes are my go-to. Well, that and cheese… you see where this is going. Nowhere healthy, but oh-so-good!

Parmesan Roasted Rosemary Potatoes

I’m a firm believer that Parmigiano Reggiano can make ANYTHING better. You’ll see how many ways I like to spin this delicious cheese named after its native town, Parma, in Italy. If you’ve seen my post on Parmesan Butternut Squash Shrimp Pasta, then you know all about it. After all, Parmigiano Reggiano is the only true parmesan. You can tell by the signature along the rind of the cheese.

This is a quick and easy sheet pan recipe. I love baby red potatoes (they are just so cute I could bite them, and I will), they cut my time in half by only having to slice once, right down the middle.

Parmesan Roasted Rosemary Potatoes

I typically mash three cloves of garlic I’ve put through the garlic press (does anyone use those anymore?), sprinkle three sprigs of rosemary, and toss together with two tbsp of olive oil (also straight from Italy courtesy of my best friend currently living in Vicenza). Add salt and pepper to taste and pop it in the oven at 400 degrees for about twenty minutes.

PArmesan Roasted Rosemary Potatoes

Stick a fork in them, they’re almost done. No seriously, once a fork can be inserted directly into the middle, they are ready to come out for just a minute. This is the fun part… grate as much Parmigiano Reggiano as you’d like on these babies. Don’t worry if it gets on the sheet pan a bit, these crunchy bits are delicious! Drop it back into the oven on broil for five minutes, not six, that’s too long.

Parmesan Roasted Rosemary Potatoes
Come to mama…

The earthy flavors of the rosemary and the salty bite from the parmesan are enough to make you cheat… on your diet, relax.  This is a perfect side to any dish, and just the right size for tiny fingers to nibble.

Parmesan Roasted Rosemary Potatoes

Enjoy! Oh, and don’t email me about your diet-cheating habits, I don’t need that kind of negativity in my life.

Essentially yours,

Erika

Thanks to Parmigiano Reggiano for partnering up with me to sponsor this post, and for single-handedly enabling my obsession with cheese. As always, all opinions expressed are 100% my own.

Device-Free Game Night for Kids

Device-Free Game Night for Kids

Thank you Goliath Games for sponsoring this post. Pick up your favorite game today to enjoy the holiday season and beyond!

It’s holiday time!

While our schedules are jam-packed with tons of events, there always seems to be some downtime where we end up spending lots of time at home. Preparing fresh homemade holiday meals from scratch takes a lot of time and effort. This time requires some serious kitchen hours, and it can be stressful trying to get the kids to understand why we can’t go off on an adventure.

This year, I decided to host a “Game-giving” play date for the kids and a couple of their close friends. If we all have to be working hard, it may as well be in good company. The kids were able to play together and spend some one on one device-free time interacting with each other.

We kicked it off old-school by setting up five Goliath Games most popular games. Pop the Pig, Doggie Doo, Shark Bite, Catch the Fox, and Giggle Wiggle. No batteries, no screens! Just good ol’ fashion fun.

If you follow my blog you know I am an advocate for PLAY. The decline in play on a developing brain has far-reaching effects. Setting aside time to unplug and just play in a mixed-age setting is not only ideal, it is necessary. This sort of play requires conflict resolution and compassion. These age-appropriate Goliath Games all require the youngest player to take the first turn. This is excellent for teaching patience and compassion.

Device-Free Game Night

Device-Free Game Night

Each of the games had a fun element of surprise, it was fun to see their reaction and watch as they took part in a good chuckle. Creating an invitation to play by laying out all of the games allowed the kids to mingle and take turns.

Device-Free Game Night

Device-Free Game Night

Once they were done with sitting games, Giggle Wiggle encouraged them to get silly and do what kids do best, start moving! These games provided a gateway to a deeper imaginative play, and as adults, we were able to stand back and enjoy the show.

While the holiday can get busy, and messy, and… well, you know. We have to be mindful of how we spend even our “busy” time and remember to always make room for play.

Device-Free Game Night

 

Essentially yours,

Erika

I was selected for this opportunity as a member of CLEVER and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.

Device-Free Game Night

 

 

 

How To Make Delicious Cheesecake At Home + Giveaway

How To Make Delicious Cheesecake At Home + Giveaway

Some would say I’m obsessed with cheesecake. Okay, I would say I’m obsessed with cheesecake. I’ve always been a huge supporter of dairy and this is quite possibly one of my favorite forms of it.So much so that the cake for my wedding rehearsal was the Tuxedo Cheesecake from the Cheesecake Factory. You know, where cheesecake was invented (duh). I’m pretty addicted to their classic, creamy style. With such a large variety of options to choose from, I practically pack most of my large-portioned dinner away for later just to make room for this creamy goodness.

Delicious Cheesecake

Well, the gods must be in my favor because now you get to take that very same goodness home, and not in a doggy bag! Finally, the cheesecake masters have created a boxed version of this same great taste for fanatics like myself to make at home all the time every once in a while.

The delicious and timeless flavors like Original, Strawberry, and Salted Caramel are available in your home whenever you like. I was excited to learn how simple and easy it was. Pretty much add cream cheese and bake low on 275, it evens comes with its own graham cracker crust! The hardest part is waiting for it to cool off long enough to cut yourself a slice. I work hard to stay as healthy as possible, so I reserve my indulgence for favorites like Cheesecake Factory, and now I can enjoy it in my very own home. And it’s good, we’re talking restaurant-quality gooood.

Delicious Cheesecake

I’m addicted to the Classic Recipe right now because it’s so easy to pair with fall/holiday flavors. I’m loving it so much I’m giving away these three flavors for one lucky winner to try at home for themselves! Simply enter below to win a starter package with the Classic Recipe/ Strawberry/ and Salted Caramel. I know cheesecake lovers like myself are going to LOVE these mixes. It tasted exactly like the famous cheesecake at Cheesecake Factory.

Good luck!

Delicious Cheesecake

 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Essentially yours,

Erika