Chipotle Fried Shrimp with Tostones Vinagreta

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #VivaLaMorena #CollectiveBias

Every time I feel like eating shrimp I always invite my mom and sister to help with the preparation. We tend to always use our same recipes but this time I wanted to add a La Morena Chipotle kick to it! My mom and sister love spicy Mexican food so when I told them my plans they quickly came over.

I love when all three of us are in the kitchen because all we do is laugh and remember the times we had together when we were younger. My mom, sister and I are super close so we do enjoy simple things like finding any excuse to get together and cook a meal. My husband and brother-in-law happily take over our combined 3 toddlers while we have fun in the kitchen.

I wanted to kick up our traditional fried shrimp with tostones by creating a chipotle ketchup to dip the shrimp in and a jalapeno spiced vinagreta to go over the tostones. When I want a spicy kick I always turn to La Morena products because they have that Mexican traditional flavor and I can find them in my neighborhood bodega (corner store).

To make the Fried Shrimp: Season some bread crumbs with adobo, sazon, garlic powder, onion powder and pepper. Then dip the shrimp in some whisked eggs and then into the seasoned bread crumbs. Fry the shrimp in some hot oil until they are cooked perfectly. Make sure not to over cook or you will have rubbery shrimp.

To make the Tostones: Take some green plantains and peel them. Cut them into one  inch long slices and soak in salted water for about 30 minutes. Drain and pat dry. Fry in hot oil until both sides are a golden yellow. Take out and smash down. Place back into the hot oil and fry on both sides until they are a deeper golden yellow.

To make the Chipotle Shrimp Sauce: Take the chipotles in sauce, ketchup and sofrito, seasonings and place into a little blender. Blend until smooth.

To make the Vinagreta: Dice some fresh tomatoes and white onion. Finely mince some of the La Morena jalapenos and garlic. Combine the tomatoes, onion, jalapeno, garlic, vinegar, olive oil and lemon juice. Let sit in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes.

Fried Shrimp and Chipotle Sauce with Tostones Vinagreta
  • 1 pound of shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 1 1/2 cups of bread crumbs (we use Italian seasoned) add more seasonings if you like.
  • 2 eggs, whisked 
  • 3 green plantains
  • 2 tblsp La Morena Chipotle in Sauce
  • 3/4 cup tomato sauce 
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tblsp sofrito
  • 3 green plantains
  • 3 plum tomatoes
  • 1 small onion
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp vinegar
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • 1/2 tblsp finely minced La Morena jalapenos
  1. Dip the shrimp in the eggs and then into the bread crumbs. Fry the shrimp in some hot oil until they are cooked perfectly. Make sure not to over cook or you will have rubbery shrimp. 
  2. Peel the plantains and then cut them into one inch long slices and soak in salted water for about 30 minutes. 
  3. Drain and pat dry. Fry in hot oil until both sides are a golden yellow. Take out and smash down. Place back into the hot oil and fry on both sides until they are a deeper golden yellow color. 
  4. Take the chipotles in sauce, ketchup and sofrito and place into a little blender. Blend until smooth. 
  5. Dice the tomatoes and white onion. Finely mince the jalapenos and garlic. 
  6. Combine the tomatoes, onion, jalapeno, garlic, vinegar, olive oil and lemon juice. Let sit in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes. 

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Exercise Cards To Help You Get That Workout In!

So we have been having freezing and frigid weathers here in the city. I went outside a couple of days ago and my face actually hurt from the wind chills! That was enough to keep me indoors until this weather get better.

I do miss taking my little walks with my toddler and going out to the store or supermarket to get last minute groceries or housewares. Window shopping is one of my favorite workouts but with these weathers I am really missing out on those calories burned. I have my YouTube Workouts all scheduled in my Weight Loss Planner but I still feel like I should do more since I am not getting my daily walks in.

I have all of these workouts on my Exercise Pinterest board and haven't really used them because it gets kind of difficult to look at it on a laptop screen and scroll through the instructions especially when I am doing floor work. I decided to take the ones with the best picture tutorials and make exercise cards that I would do throughout the day.

To make them I saved the image of the exercises from the website first. Then I opened it in my favorite image editor and copied the top three exercises and pasted onto a new image. Then I selected the bottom three exercise and pasted it onto another image. I used the print layout to place both images on one sheet and printed it out.

Then I took out my trusty laminator and laminated the whole sheet. I carefully cut out each exercise and punched a hole in the upper left corner. I repeated it with each exercise and threaded them all onto a ring clip.

I placed my exercise cards where I could easily see them and set my alarm to go off every 90 minutes. Every time I completed one I put it back on the ring facing towards the back. When all the cards were turned over I knew I was done.

The exercises were pretty fun to do and my toddler joined in. Since she liked exercising with me I made her, her own set of exercise cards I found at TeachMama.

What are some of the ways you like to exercise when the weather is too cold to go out?

Protect Your DLSR Investment with a Camera Coat

**I received the product below free for my review. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be a good fit for my readers. All opinions are 100% my own.

Even though we weren't supposed to exchange gifts on Christmas my husband surprised me with an amazing gift! He knew one of my goals of 2015 was to take better pictures on this site so he got me a sweet Canon Rebel T5i. You might remember the post I wrote on it but I never dreamed I would own one! It has been about a month and a half and I am totally in love with it. If you are on the fence about getting a DLSR I say go for it because it's totally worth it!

The day after getting my camera my husband told me to go out and get a camera bag for it. I waited on that because I wanted to make sure I was going to keep the camera before I bought one of those expensive bulky bags. I am glad I waited because I got the chance to review a Camera Coat and I love it!

The Camera Coat video says it all for a DLSR owner! I didn't want to have to carry an extra bulky bag with me because I still carry a baby bag. (When you are on the go with a toddler you need toys, stickers, snacks and juice!). With all of this snow and slush and ice I didn't feel comfortable carrying my Canon outside because it is truly an investment and I want to be super careful with it. I love that the Camera Coat is so sleek and waterproof.

One of my favorite features of the Camera Coat is the little clip that attaches to my strap. It makes it so easy to get my camera out of the Camera Coat to take those quick little perfect shots of my daughter. I love that it stays hanging right from the strap and I don't have to worry about it dropping on the floor or losing it.

Check out the Camera Coats site to see the different sizes and patterns they come in. You can follow them on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram to stay up to date with all of the newest products and designs.

Do you own a DLSR camera? What's your favorite photography tip?

Two Piece Toddler Pajamas From Adult Shirt Tutorial

I love to sew especially for my daughter, but fabric can get expensive so I get a lot of my fabric from discounted clothes. As soon as I hit a clothes store I check out the clearance section. The larger the piece the better the fabric. I recently went into my favorite discount store and found these huge long sleeve shirts for $1.99. In looking at the sleeves they looked like the perfect size for pant legs. I quickly grabbed a few and added them to my fabric stash.

With these super chilly NYC days I decided to make my daughter a super warm two piece pajama set out of the shirt. First I cut off the sleeves at the seams and then cut the side seams of the shirt. Then I carefully cut the neckline.

To make the pants I followed my tutorial for Toddler Flannel Pants. The length of the sleeve was the perfect size for the length of pants I needed. I subtracted the hem allowance on the pattern and matched it to the hem of the sleeve so that the hem of the pants would already be finished.

To make the shirt I took a pajama shirt that fit my daughter well and used it to make a pattern. First I folded the shirt in half and folded back the sleeve and traced it onto a piece of paper. I added 1/2 inch seam allowances to the sides and armholes of the shirt. Then I traced around the folded sleeve and added 1/2" at the top of the sleeve.

I lined up the bottom of the shirt pattern with the bottom of the adult shirt that was folded and cut all around. I did this twice to get the front and back of the shirt. I did the same with the sleeve pattern and cut two out. Then I took the two shirt pattern pieces and sewed at the shoulder seams using a 1/2" seam. Then I pinned the sleeves to the armholes and sewed in place using a 1/2" seam.

Next I measured the neck line of the toddler pajama shirt that I used for the pattern and added 1/2"the measurement. I then used that measurement to cut the neck binding from the adult shirt I cut earlier. Pin ends together and sew using a 1/4". Open seam and flatten. Pin around the neckline, right sides together and sew all around using a 1/4" seam. Finally sew the sides of the shirt using a 1/2" seam. To finish, I used my pinking shears to go over all of the raw seams.

Super Quick Gluten Free PB & J Vanilla Parfait

This post is sponsored by Walmart and Sverve. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be a good fit for my readers. All opinions are 100% my own.

Last week we brought in some Van's PB & J bars to my daughter's dance class and the girls loved them! When I first gave it to the little girl that was gluten free she looked at her mom to get the OK. When her mom told her it was OK and opened it, she quickly grabbed the bar and took a bite. She then ran to her dance mates and they all sat on the floor and happily ate their bars. I loved seeing her eat the same snack as all the other little girls and not to have her own substitute.

Then it was time for the girls to start their lesson so us moms went downstairs to have our usual coffee chat. I shared with them about the Gluten Free event at Walmart and they were just as surprised to hear about all of the gluten free choices they offered. We all decided to bring in gluten free snacks from now on so that nobody would have to feel different.

Since my daughter loves them so much herself I keep a couple of boxes on hand so she can have them outside of dance class. She loves strawberries and blueberries so it was a perfect fit for her. I love that they have oats and peanut butter to give a little bit of fiber and protein in her diet. To bump up the protein I decided to crumble the PB & J bar and put it on top of a peanut butter vanilla yogurt parfait.

To make the parfait I took some Greek yogurt and added a little bit of almond milk to thin it down a little bit. Then I added some PB powder, honey and vanilla. I layered the yogurt with berries, banana and the crumbled PB & J bar and it made a delicious breakfast.

Gluten Free PB & J Vanilla Parfait (Printable Recipe)
  • 1/2 cup plain nonfat Greek yogurt
  • 2 tblsp almond milk
  • 1 tsp honey (more if you your yogurt sweeter)
  • 1/4 tsp vanilla
  • 1/2 tblsp peanut butter powder
  • 1 Van's PB & J bar 
  • 1/2 banana
  • 1/4 cup black berries
  1. Crumble the PB & J bar and set aside. 
  2. Combine the yogurt, honey, vanilla and peanut butter powder and mix well. 
  3. Slice the banana and wash the berries. 
  4. Add some yogurt into a cup then a layer of bananas and then a layer of PB & J crumbs. Add another layer of yogurt, blackberries and then crumbs. Top with the rest of the yogurt and the rest of the crumbs. 

Head on over to the Walmart Page to find out the other varieties of gluten free products they offer.

The Best Beginner Exercise YouTube Videos

So I am finally getting back into my workout flow. I haven't been to the gym in a while and with this weather I don't plan on going anytime soon. It's cold, icy and full of slush right now in the city so I tend to hibernate. I still want to be active and get some workouts in so I turn to my favorite free way with YouTube.

If you do a search on YouTube for exercise for beginners you get over 3 million hits! There are even big names like Jillian Michaels and Denise Austin to videos of Zumba gym classes to videos of small trainers trying to get their name out. Here are my favorites:

Disco Sweat My favorite of Richard Simmons. I LOVE him because it is so entertaining and inspiring. He knows just the right thing to say to keep you going even if you want to quit. (Embedding was disabled for this video)

Quiet Cardio Workout
One of my favorites ways of breaking a sweat without disturbing my downstairs neighbors.

START! Walking at Home 3 Mile Walk
I love doing Leslie Sansone's walk videos because it's super easy to do and you still break a sweat!

Easy Zumba Class. Of course I had to add Zumba which I can't even call exercise because I have so much fun doing it.

Full Body Resistance Band Workout. My favorite way to get my strength training in because resistance bands are so portable.

Total Body Workout with Stability Ball for Beginners. I love doing exercises on my stability ball because it works out places that a regular dumb bell can't get to. Plus it's fun!

BONUS: Zumba Wii Game: Even if you don't have a Wii you can still workout just like you did. Who cares if you don't get the points!

It also makes it extremely easy to view it on my big TV in the living room so I use a chromecast and the YouTube app.

Do you use YouTube to workout? Which ones are your favorite videos? 

Purex PowerShot Makes My Laundry Me Time Easier!

Purex provided me with a free sample to give an honest review. All opinions are 100% my own.

So I think I am in the minority when I say I like to do laundry. I have to go out to the laundromat a couple of blocks away because we rent so having a wash/dryer was not an option. Going out is a little escape of me time without the toddler and husband. So I have my husband help me down with the laundry while I take down the shopping cart and bag of laundry essentials.

Since I am a Purex® Insider I get to try their newest products. I am one of the first to try out their new PowerShot Ultra Concentrated easy measure liquid detergent . The ultra concentrated part means the bottle is smaller so it's easy for me to fit in the back of my shopping cart. The best part of the PowerShot Detergent is the cool little way to measure and pour the detergent into the washing machine.

I really never took the time to look at the little measuring lines in the tops of the detergent bottles to get the right amount. I would fill it to the top and carefully dump it in. I would always spill a little at the top of the machine or even my hands and would have to always go to the laundromat sink to clean up. With the new PowerShot feature of the bottle all you have to do is flip the bottle and the correct amount will go into the reservoir of the top. Then you just flip the top and pour it in. As you turn the bottle back another dosage is conveniently  poured back into the reservoir for your next load.

Another thing I love about the PowerShot is that it measures out exactly how much you need. You don't have to guess or use those little hard to see lines like on a regular laundry detergent bottle. I can already see myself saving money as I am using the right amount instead of just filling up the cap like I normally do.

Not only is it no mess and easy to use it also cleans really well and leaves your clothes smelling really good! Are you ready to try the Purex PowerShot no-spill detergent bottle? Enter below for your chance to win a coupon for a free Purex PowerShot!

a Rafflecopter giveaway No purchase is necessary to enter. One US entrant per household. The Winner will be contacted by email and given 48 hours to respond before a new winner is chosen. The sponsor will be responsible for product shipment to the winner of this giveaway.

Easy Valentines Day Glitter Heart Tutu Tutorial

As soon as I found out how easy it is to make a tutu out of tulle I quickly starting working on one when I found out my sister was having a girl over three and a half years ago. It was so easy to make and extremely affordable compared to the prices in those little online boutiques and stores.

Making a tutu is super easy were you just take strips of tulle and knot them onto elastic. First I started by buying yards of tulle and cutting out the strips. If you have ever cut tulle before you know how long the process can be because it slips. My strips never came out even but it was OK because the fluffiness of the finished product hid all of that.

Then I came across another amazing method of cutting the tulle strips by buying the tulle in rolls and wrapping it around a piece of cardboard the length you want. Genius!

To make a tutu for my 2 1/2 year old I measured from waist to knee at  15 inches. I took a piece of cardboard that was just as long by 12 inches wide. Then I wrapped away until the roll was gone. Then I took a pair of sharp scissors and cut across the bottom loops of the wrapped tulle. I then took some pink tulle and repeated with about half of the roll. Set the strips of tulle aside.

Measure around the waist and add 1/2". Take the elastic, overlap the ends and sew with a sewing machine in 3 different spots with reinforced stitches.

Take the elastic loop and place it around the piece of cardboard you used to wrap the tulle. Fold the tulle strip in half and place the loop in the elastic like shown and thread the end pieces through the loop. Continue until you have filled the elastic loop with the tulle strips all around. I did a pattern of two white stripes and one pink strip.

Print out the Hearts Template and pin on top of the red glittery felt. Cut out all of the hearts.

 I placed the hearts randomly around the tulle skirt and pinned them in place. Using a sewing machine, stitch back and forth a couple of times on each heart.

I slipped it onto my sweet little cupid and around and around she twirled with it. She loved it so much that I let her wear it at dance class!