Monday Musings + Chicken Cobb Salad with Blue Cheese Buttermilk Dressing

1. John and I spent a wonderful week with our families (the first half with his folks in Connecticut, the second with mine in Pennsylvania) but I have to say I am looking forward to getting back into the kitchen. I’m itching to try out some recipe ideas I’ve been mulling over, and I am also participating in a recipe contest – the entry for which is due this week.

More details to come.

2. I participated in the first annual Austin to Boston food swap this year, and couldn’t be more psyched to try out the loot sent to me from Kathryn!

Locally made brownies, steel cut oats, sweet potato pancake mix, loose tea leaves, coffee chocolates, and some spicy delicacies were included in the package.

Candied jalapenos?! I’m going to have to fight John for those babies.

3. I finally invested in a dSLR camera!! This beauty was my Christmas present to myself… and it just might be the best $700 I’ve ever spent.

I’m pretty smitten with this camera.

I’m in the process of familiarizing myself with the settings and such; the Rebel T3i a huge step up from my point-and-shoot, and it will most likely take a little time for me to get used to shooting with it. I’m contemplating splurging on a macro lens, (I’m eying the 60 mm f/2.8), but in the meantime I will be using the basic stock lens included in the kit.

Hopefully my photos will be noticeably better in upcoming posts!

4. I’m bringing back an old favorite for today’s Back Burner post:

Chicken Cobb Salad with Blue Cheese Buttermilk Dressing

Crisp romaine lettuce, tender poached chicken, juicy tomatoes, hard-boiled egg, creamy avocado, and – of course – tangy (low-fat!) blue cheese dressing jump onto a plate together for a delicious, nutritious, and filling entree salad.

This would be a great way to counteract all of the holiday indulgences from the past few weeks!

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