Author Archives: Anne-Marie Nichols

About Anne-Marie Nichols

Anne-Marie Nichols is a Social Media Consultant and Healthy Food & Lifestyle Blogger who helps busy moms and their families with healthy recipes and lifestyle tips.

Enter the Swap It or Top It with Mushrooms Contest!

Enter the Swap It or Top It with Mushrooms Contest! Learn more at This Mama Cooks! On a Diet - thismamacooks.com

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Tweet #shopcartons and help donate a tree!

Learn how every time you tweet #shopcartons you can help donate a tree! At This Mama Cooks! On a Diet - thismamacooks.com

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Happy National Drink Watermelon Day! #DrinkWatermelonDay

Happy National Drink Watermelon Day! #DrinkWatermelonDay at This Mama Cooks! On a Diet - thismamacooks.comAccording to the National Climatic Data Center in Asheville, NC, July 24th is the hottest day in the contiguous United States. That’s why the National Watermelon Promotion Board has declared today the first-ever “National Drink Watermelon Day”!

Since watermelon is 92% water, it’s the perfect ingredient to make refreshing beverages or dishes that boost your hydration. You can check out my watermelon recipes for some ideas or find more recipes and serving ideas at watermelon.org or on their Facebook page.

What’s your favorite way to enjoy watermelon?

Facts about watermelon nutrition at This Mama Cooks! On a Diet - thismamacooks.com

Banana Cardamom Crème Brûlée

Banana Cardamom Crème Brûlée at This Mama Cooks! On a Diet - thismamacooks.com

I was sent another wonderful recipe to share with you from The Hundred-Foot Journey. This time it’s for one of my favorite desserts, crème brûlée. The recipe was created by Chef Bal Arneson, who you might know from her appearances and shows on the Cooking Channel and Food Network.

I’ve made one substitution. The original recipe calls for milk and I’ve seen many crème brûlée recipes that use cream, too. However, you can use coconut milk or cream, rice milk, almond milk, or even soy milk to make it. Coconut cream would be really decadent and would compliment the other flavors perfectly.

However, a vanilla flavored soy or almond milk would be really delicious, too. Since a flavored milk would have added sugar, you may want to back off a bit on the sugar you add to the milk.

A note on blow torches for crème brûlée. Forget the fancy ones for cooking! They’re expensive, and aren’t very reliable. A friend of mine who's a professional baker even had one blow up on her! Instead, go to Home Depot and get a blow torch kit. They’re about $25 and you can use them for other projects around the house, too.

New The Hundred-Foot Journey featurette!

There’s a new two minute long video featuring a short interview with The Hundred-Foot Journey movie producers, Oprah Winfrey and Steven Spielberg. Check it out!

You can connect with The Hundred-Foot Journey at:

Also, be on the lookout for the ‪#‎My100FootJourneySweeps‬!

Banana Cardamom Crème Brûlée at This Mama Cooks! On a Diet - thismamacooks.com

Banana Cardamom Crème Brûlée

Recipe by Chef Bal Arneson

Ingredients

  • 2 cups coconut cream or milk
  • 6 tablespoons sugar, divided
  • 1 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 1 teaspoon fennel seeds
  • 4 ripe bananas
  • 4 egg yolks

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 300 degrees F.
  2. Pour the coconut milk into a medium saucepan and add 1 tablespoon of sugar, cardamom, fennel seeds and bananas, mashing them into the milk.
  3. Turn the heat to medium high. When it comes to a boil, turn the heat off and cover pan with a tight fitting lid. Leave to infuse for 15-20 minutes.
  4. In a medium bowl, beat the egg yolks with 1 tablespoon of sugar until thick and pale.
  5. Using a fine sieve, strain the hot milk and slowly pour it into the yolk mixture while whisking constantly to prevent the eggs from scrambling.
  6. Pour the mixture back into the saucepan and cook over low heat until the mixture is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon – about 3-5 minutes.
  7. Pour the mixture into 4 shallow crème brûlée dishes or ramekins.
  8. Place the dishes in a baking pan large enough to accommodate them all. Then pour enough water into the pan to come halfway up the dishes. (This is called a making a bain marie or a water bath) Be careful not to splash any water into the crème brûlée dishes!
  9. Bake for 30 minutes or so until set but still slightly giggly. If the dishes aren’t set at this point, continue to check them every 5 minutes until they are done.
  10. Remove from the bain marie water bath and let cool slightly on the counter top. Then place the dishes in the refrigerator uncovered for about an hour.
  11. Remove from refrigerator and sprinkle 1 tablespoon of sugar evenly on top of each crème brûlée. Melt the sugar with a blowtorch or place under a broiler until the sugar has caramelized. (Make sure to keep a close eye on your dishes as not to burn them!) Serve immediately.
Prep Time: 30 Minutes
Cook Time: 1 Hour
Servings: Serves 4
  • Serving size: 1 dish

Recipe and photo used with permission.

What makes you sparkle? #SparkleWithDASANI

Dinner out at Viva! makes me sparkle! At This Mama Cooks! On a Diet #SparkleWithDASANI #ad

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Avocado Coconut & Watermelon Ice Pops

Cool down with some Avocado Coconut & Watermelon Ice Pops at This Mama Cooks! On a Diet - thismamacooks.com

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Win a $100 Regal Entertainment Gift Card!

Win a $100 Regal Entertainment Gift Card at This Mama Cooks! On a Diet - thismamacooks.com

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First you clean and then you heal with Puracyn® OTC Wound & Skin Care

First you clean and then you heal with Puracyn® OTC Wound & Skin Care. Learn more at This Mama Cooks! On a Diet - thismamacooks.com #ad

It’s been a busy summer for us! We’ve been running around to various camps, over to the golf course and to the club pool, over to friends’ homes, and even a few trips out of state. When we’ve been home, it’s been non-stop with neighborhood parties and the kids having friends over to play or have sleepovers.

Along the way, Lucie and Nathan have picked up the usual collection of “owies” such as sores from constantly scratching bug bites, scrapes from who knows where, and the time that Nathan came back from the lake retreat looking like a bag of pork rinds. (So much for reminding him to use lots of sunscreen.)

That’s why I have a big collection of first aid supplies throughout the house, my car, and even my purse such as aloe vera gel, adhesive bandages, ice packs, ankle wraps, ibuprophen, cotton swabs, antibiotic cream, and so on. One product I recently added to my on-the-go first aid collection is Puracyn® OTC Wound & Skin Care, which is available in the first aid aisle at Meijer, Rite Aid, Walgreens and other retailers nationwide in 4-ounce bottles for a suggested retail price of $14.99.

The benefits of using Puracyn® OTC Wound & Skin Care

Puracyn® OTC Wound & Skin Care is a unique solution of electrochemically treated saline for cleaning and healing wounds, including cuts, abrasions, irritations and lacerations. It’s great for when you’re at the park or beach or anytime you’re away from a clean or easily accessible source of fresh water to clean a wound. You just spray it on the cut or scrap, apply a bandage, and you’re all set. It’s not greasy, too.

Sure there are water fountains at the park, but try to get your 11-year-old’s knee in one. (Like you’d even consider it. Not exactly proper – or easy!) Plus, don’t you feel a little icky trying to clean a scrape in a not-so-clean public restroom?  Or maybe you’re hiking and only have water from the bottle you’ve been drinking out of – not exactly sterile.

Puracyn® OTC Wound & Skin Care won’t burn or irritate the skin, so your younger child won’t be scared when you’re trying to clean their “ouchies.” That’s because Puracyn® mimics compounds naturally produced by the body, making it an ideal aid in wound cleaning and healing.

And if you’re coming back from the beach or pool and don’t have ability to shower off any owies before you leave, you may want to give them a spritz and reapply any bandages that have fallen off. I don’t know if your kids get itchy after swimming in the pool, but mine do. And it’s a rush to get them home and in the bath before they start itching those darn bug bites and cuts and making them 12 times worse and possibly infected!

Favorite Summer Firsts with Puracyn OTC Wound & Skin Care. Learn more at This Mama Cooks! On a Diet - thismamacooks.com #ad

Puracyn® Favorite Summer Firsts Giveaway

To help spread the word about the benefits of keeping Puracyn® OTC Wound & Skin Care in your first aid kit this summer, Puracyn® is giving away four summer themed prize packages on Facebook to help you have fun at the beach, on a camping trip, at a backyard BBQ, and more! Winners will also receive a first aid kit including a Puracyn® OTC Wound & Skin Care product. You can enter the Puracyn® Favorite Summer Firsts Giveaway here.

Puracyn®’s Favorite Summer Firsts Giveaway is going on until July 24th and one winner will be chosen and announced on Facebook at around 12:30 P.M. EST each week on Thursday, July 3rd, 10th, 17th and 24th to win one of the four prize packages. You can learn more about the Puracyn® Favorite Summer Firsts Giveaway at www.facebook.com/Puracyn.

This is a product-provided, sponsored conversation that contains affiliate links. I received one 4 oz. spray bottle of Puracyn® OTC Wound & Skin Care and a branded first aid kit. All opinions, text and experiences are my own.