Hi everyone!!!!

As you can see… I’ve been M.IA!

Thank you to all of my loyal followers for sticking with me and following me on Instagram (@pearls_and_paris) & Twitter (@pearlsNparis_xo) since it’s been quiet on WordPress for me.

As you may or not know already, I am pregnant!

Here is a look at our pregnancy announcement while we were away in Europe in May:

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Bonjour from Paris!!! There’s 3 of us in this picture… but one of us is camera-shy until September 2015

This week I will be 25 weeks. The first few months of being pregnant really did a number on me. While thankfully I didn’t experience sickness like so many pregnant woman do, the fatigue was really bad. I just recently started getting my energy back and so I’m making sure I get back into blogging but feel free to follow me on my other social media sites as I update them a lot more frequently throughout the day. As I make this wonderful transition into motherhood, I will also be making a few changes on my blog. First – I need to play catch up. I attended so many fabulous shows during NYFW in February and never got to post about them so I will focus on that as well as get into my normal Beauty & Fashion posts and some collection previews I’ve been to but I also will add a Motherhood section. I will be posting some product reviews and suggestions for expecting mom’s. If any of you have anything specific you would like me to talk about or review – please leave a comment below 🙂

xo

When I first heard of Spaghetti Squash – I just didn’t get it! I didn’t even know if I liked Squash but the thought of using a vegetable (some would argue that it’s technically a fruit) as a pasta substitute baffled me. Could anything be as delicious as regular, carb filled pasta??

I decided to give it a try & this is how it turned out:

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Not only does it look amazing but it taste DELICIOUS! I was really surprised by the texture and I plan to start incorporating Spaghetti Squash into my weekly dinners more often. Anytime I work with recipes I find online, I always substitute ingredients & put my own spin on it so here is the recipe I used to make my Spaghetti Squash with Shrimp.

What You Need:

sharp knife

cutting board

baking sheet or roasting pan

1 fork & spoon

small bowl

pastry brush (optional)

Ingredients:

Spaghetti Squash – I used a 2lb squash, but adjust size to the amount of servings you want.

Olive Oil

Sea Salt

Black Pepper

Butter

Garlic

Herb of your choice (rosemary, basil, thyme etc.) – I used a little ground Italian seasoning

Shrimp

Instructions:

1. Cut your squash in half lengthwise. Be very careful and go slow as it is not easy to slice.

2. Scoop out & discard the seeds. (If you would like to keep the seeds to roast them click HERE)

3. Preheat your oven to 375 °F. Take your olive oil, sea salt, black pepper & herbs and mix them together in a bowl. Using a pastry brush or spoon, brush both sides (top & bottom) of your squash generously and place them on your baking sheet with the opening facing down.

4. Bake for 40 minutes – if you have a larger squash, you might want to bake for an additional 5-10 minutes. When I removed the squash, my top was browned.

5. Remove squash from the oven and allow it to cool for about 5 minutes. Take your fork & go around your squash separating the skin, you will instantly start to see your string noodles. Then just scrape the center the same way and place in a small bowl. Use your fork or your fingers to separate any pieces that do not appear “stringy.”

*Taste the noodles. Feel free to skip the remaining steps if you are satisfied with the taste & do not want to add extra calories with the butter or add shrimp. The taste of the spaghetti with the mixture of the olive oil with salt, pepper & herbs is delicious as is.

6. Heat a pan with garlic and butter – use as much or as little as you would like. Toss in the spaghetti squash and mix for about 2 minutes so it soaks up the butter and garlic then plate.

7. These particular shrimp were already cooked so I just let them sit in room temp water and after I removed the spaghetti squash from the pan, I threw the shrimp in to catch some of the butter & garlic flavor and topped them on to the spaghetti.

Here are the steps with pictures I took while cooking:

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I was surprised at what an easy meal this turned out to be. Next week I will be trying it with a meat sauce but there are endless amounts of possibilities when cooking with Spaghetti Squash. Here are a few other recipes that caught my eye.

Spicy Roasted Tomato Marinara with Spaghetti Squash

Spaghetti Squash & Meatballs

Spaghetti Squash Tostados

One of the major pluses of Social Media to me is the power of sharing. I have come across some of the BEST recipes on pinterest and facebook and when I saw this one I knew I had to share.

Seriously… who doesn’t love Nutella???

nutella

You Will Need:

-3/4 Cup Nutella

-2 Bananas, finely diced  (Pea size)

-20 Wonton Wrappers

-Vegetable Oil for frying

Directions:

1. Dice the Bananas, set aside

2. Put Nutella in a small bowl and stir till softened

3. Take 1/2 tsp of Nutella and 2 pieces of Banana and place in the middle of the Wonton Wrapper

4. Before folding Wonton into a triangle, use a Pastry Brush with water on 2 sides to help with seal

5. Use a fork on the 2 sides to ensure a tight seal

6. Heat oil in a small saucepan so when you put a bundle in, they’ll only take 10 seconds to come to the top

7. They’ll brown on each side within another minute when you turn them

8. Drain on a paper towel, then sprinkle with powdered sugar and eat immediately!!

I cannot wait to try these! For more great recipes check out Cooking with Nonna

I wanted to share with you guys my FAVORITE meal to cook during the week. Not only is it a quick & easy meal to whip up… it’s also DELICIOUS!!!

You have to start off with a package of sausage and a box of pasta. My sausage of choice is usually Premio and while I normally get the mixed (Hot & Sweet) package – today we are working with only hot. My favorite pasta is the Ronzoni Garden Delights! I couldn’t even tell you the last time I cooked with regular pasta.

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I put a large pot of water to boil and then place all the sausage links in a pan with a little water and cover it with aluminum foil.

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I love to really brown my sausage because it brings out a lot of flavor into the pan. I flip the sausage and add a little more water and re cover.

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 By this time, the water is boiling so I toss in my pasta. I then remove the sausage from the pan and slice them and throw them back in for some more browning at a very low temperature.

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Now for the sauce…

A lot of people cringe at store-bought sauce but guess what? I don’t care… my family doesn’t make it homemade and so I’ve had to perfect my favorite one from the grocery store.

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Here she is – The Ragu Robusto! seasoned with chopped tomato, olive oil and garlic. This is by far the best tasting Ragu and with a little help from these:

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 Your family will be begging you to make this dish again soon. I personally am not a big fan of chunks of tomatoes or onions (already in the jar) so I throw the sauce in the blender to chop those pieces up. I then pour the sauce over the sliced sausage (fill up the empty jar 1/2 way with water, shake and pour that in as well) and throw in these seasons on top to taste and stir. I think quick meals should be about convenience so if you do not have some of these — skip them or substitute.

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Cover pan and let it simmer for a few minutes. Remove pasta from the stove and drain.

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I always add a touch of olive oil or butter to keep pasta from sticking together.

That’s it… now dinner is served!

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Quick tip: when storing left overs, keep the sauce with sausage and pasta in 2 separate containers.

Enjoy!!! xo