Texas caviar

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The Holzmanns are based in the midwest folks. Wisconsin. Born & raised (except for a handful of years of living in CA). Bring on your preconceived stereotypes, we can handle them!

Cheese? Yeah, we love it just as much as you imagine we do. We basically add cheese to anything and everything we make. Summer sausage? Yep. Cows everywhere? Yep. In fact, just last week there was a cow blocking a downtown intersection. Midwest accents? Most of us unfortunately have them. I only recently discovered how bad mine was. Oh yaaaa.

Football? Let’s just say that we take our Packer games pretty darn serious. The day after a Packer loss people are grumpier and the night after a Packer victory, people are the jolliest. And even though we are out our beloved Aaron Rodgers for a few games and we are on our 3rd quarterback, we are still just as pumped up to cheer on our Green Bay Packers every weekend. I have to say that most of the steryotypes you hear about Wisconsin are true and we are proud of them. We love our midwest life. It very much suits our lifestyle and family.

texas caviar

Oh yes, football!

Sunday is all about appetizers in our house. We need game food and mom needs a break from making meals throughout the week. This  Texas caviar is game-time snack approved, even by the kids! And believe it or not, it’s one delicious snack that is really good for you. Those beans are packed with protein and all those yummy veggies are so tasty you won’t believe your eating a relatively healthy snack. The dressing is my favorite part. Red wine vinegar totally makes this dip work. You just have to trust me and try this one. Last time I made a big batch I took it to a housewarming party and it was a huge hit!

Texas caviar
  • 1 can black beans, drained & rinsed
  • 1 can chick peas, drained & rinsed
  • 1 can mexi-corn
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced OR 1-2 tablespoons Tastefully Simple Garlic Garlic
  • 1 medium red onion, chopped
  • 4 roma tomatoes, diced
  • 2 avocados, diced
  • 1-2 handfuls fresh cilantro, chopped
  • ¼ cup olive oil OR ¼ cup grapeseed oil
  • ⅓ cup red wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon italian seasoning
  1. In a large mixing bowl combine beans, chick peas, mexi-corn, garlic, onions, tomatoes, avocados, and cilantro.
  2. Mix to combine.
  3. Next make the dressing.
  4. In a small mixing bowl, whisk together vinegar, oil, and italian seasoning.
  5. Pour dressing over dip and stir to coat.
  6. Store in the fridge for at least 2 hours before serving.
  7. (remember to keep an avocado pit in the bowl to keep the avocados from browning before you serve it)

Thanks for your visit. I promise I will post a pregnancy update soon! I had so many ideas for pregnancy posts this time around but time is always slipping away from me. I promised myself that I would take time to really enjoy the Christmas season this year. I mean really enjoy it and take it all in. Most years we are so busy that it’s here and gone so fast and it really makes me sad because it’s the best time of the year. I vowed this year would be different, and it already is. High five self! That is why I won’t be blogging much this Christmas season, or at least not getting stressed about it.

We are slowly starting to decorate the house together as a family, our elf Wyatt has returned from the North Pole and is up to his usual shenanigans every morning, and we are focusing more on what we can do for those less fortunate than us than on the presents the kids want for Christmas. Words can’t describe the happiness it brings me to see my kids wanting to be involved in helping other children, or picking our something special for someone who would otherwise never get a Christmas present. My wish is that every year we continue to slow down, and take every special part of Christmas in together and that we are more excited about the real reason for celebration. Jesus Christ.



Pumpkin risotto

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Pumpkins are certainly on the brain lately and I love it! I have been trying to incorporate more pumpkin into our diets this month and this recipe has proven to be a winner. Another fun new recipe I tried was pumpkin banana muffins and they were incredibly moist and went over particularly well in our house. Here is the recipe I used with a few substitutions. Anyway, back to the risotto! I don’t make risotto often because it always sounds like a lot of work. I wanted to try it out in the crock pot to see if I could achieve a good risotto but also be super lazy about it. Turns out it worked really well. *and the crowd goes wild for team lazy

pumpkin rissotto

The ultimate lazy cook challenge: could I make a meal out of this without making anything else to go with it? Enter, chicken apple sausage. The apples from the chicken apple sausage and the pumpkin go together so well. Give me anything apple this season, the apples are incredible this year!  You can’t keep us away from the apple orchards these days, especially now that the honey crisps are coming around. Yum. You know that saying an apple a day… keeps the doctor away. Let’s just say we shouldn’t be needing to see any doctors for a long long time.

  • 1-15 oz can pumpkin (not pumpkin pie filling)
  • 2 cups short grain white rice
  • 32 oz vegetable(or chicken) broth
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced OR 2½ tablespoons Tastefully Simple's Garlic Garlic
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil (or grapeseed oil)
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 package chicken apple sausage (Costco carries delicious apple sausages stuffed with gouda!)
  • ⅘ handfuls spinach
  • water as needed
  1. In a large crock pot toss in uncooked rice, broth, butter & pumpkin.
  2. Turn crock pot to high for an hour to let the rice cook.
  3. In a medium sauce pan heat olive oil over medium heat. Toss in garlic.
  4. After about a minute toss onions into pan with garlic. Heat until onions are translucent.
  5. Next, slice chicken apple sausage into small, bite-size slices. Toss into the same pan with the onions and garlic. Heat until lightly browned.
  6. Add sausage mixture to the crock pot, stir and turn heat down to low.
  7. Cook risotto for at least 5 hours or until rice is fully cooked.
  8. Toss in fresh spinach right before serving.

A few other favorite pumpkin recipes:

*updated Here is the link to the pumpkin caramel apple crisp. The recipe is in a free downloadable e-cookbook under dessert recipes!

pumpkins (2)Speaking of pumpkins, check out our pack this year! In order, Liam’s, Jack’s, Remy’s and baby’s. Pumpkin seeds are roasting in the oven as I type!pumpkins (1) pumpkinsHappy Halloween festivities this week and next, to you and your littles! Remember to follow us over on Instagram for picture updates. I am excited to see all the fun costumes this week.


Cilantro lime quinoa

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What do you do when you are craving Chiptole’s cilantro lime rice, but the nearest one is 40 minutes away AND its 10 pm? You make this. I added the corn because its in season and I wanted to make a meal out of this recipe, and I certainly did. We are trying to keep up with our fresh cilantro that is abundantly growing and since I am a self-proclaimed cilantro addict, we aren’t having any problems doing so. This quinoa is the perfect fill you up meal but still light enough for summer, and the taste is super fresh.

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My beautiful peonies…say it isn’t so! My arrangement only lasted a few weeks and now they are all gone, sooo sad. The fresh bouquets at the farmers market just don’t compare. Our house is just happier when their is fresh flowers on the dining room table, or maybe it’s just mom thats happier. :)

  • 2 cups uncooked quinoa
  • 1 handful cilantro, chopped
  • 1 small bag frozen yellow corn
  • juice of 1 lime
  • 4 cups water
  • 4 tablespoons salted butter
  1. In a large pot combine uncooked quinoa and water.
  2. Bring to a boil, then turn heat on low for 15 minutes, or until quinoa has absorbed almost all of the water.
  3. Stir in corn and butter.
  4. Squeeze lime juice over, and stir.
  5. Throw in cilantro, and stir to combine.




Quinoa veggie salad with lemon basil dressing

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We are on a huge quinoa kick lately thanks to my brother-in-law! He made us red quinoa last weekend with salmon and we are hooked. I can’t get over how good this stuff tastes and the endless possibilities of dishes to serve it in. What really gets me though is how healthy it is for you. Did you know quinoa has twice the amount of protein as meat, per ounce? Pretty crazy right!? This salad has been great to have in the fridge all week for lunch. It is packed with veggies and even more protein with the garbanzo beans. The lemon basil dressing is so light and fresh, you will love this. So what are you waiting for?

Quinoa veggie salad with lemon basil dressing
  • 1 cup quinoa
  • 15 oz. can garbanzo beans, rinsed and drained
  • 3 roma tomatoes, diced
  • 1 orange bell pepper, diced
  • 1½ cups frozen corn, thawed
  • 4 green onions, sliced
  • 2 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 2 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice
  • 1½ tsp. fresh chopped basil
  1. In a medium sized pot, over high heat, pour 2 cups of water and the quinoa.
  2. Heat until a rolling boil is reached, then simmer on low for 15 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, chop up tomatoes, pepper, and onions and layer them in a large mixing bowl.
  4. Add your corn, and beans to the bowl.
  5. Prepare your dressing by whisking together olive oil, lemon juice, and chopped basil.
  6. When quinoa has cooled, add it to your bowl of veggies, pour dressing over the top and mix really well.
  7. Store in the fridge for at least an hour before serving.




Chopped chicken taco salad

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I am obsessed with anything Tex-mex (I am not sure if that is the right description of the flavor my tastebuds crave daily, but what I mean is anything with cilantro, corn, beans, tomatoes & avocados) so as soon as I found this recipe I knew I needed to make it immediately. I must say it rivals my favorite taco salad in town here. Now the only question was, could I get my husband and kids to eat this as a meal, for dinner? Yes, yes I could, and I did. I am a stickler about the kids always eating what we are eating (or at least trying it) and I will not make them something different just because they don’t want to eat it. So I was prepared to be a meanie and force them to finish this salad. But I didn’t have to! Yay for a hassle-free dinner time!

Chopped chicken taco salad
  • 2 cups shredded chicken (rotisserie works the best)
  • 1 green pepper, diced
  • 1 can black beans, rinsed
  • 1 can whole kernel sweet corn, drained
  • 2 roma tomatoes, diced
  • 4 green onions, diced
  • 1 head of iceberg lettuce, washed & chopped
  • ¼ cup cilantro chopped
  • 2 ripe avocados, diced
  • 1 cup crushed tortilla chips
  • ⅓ cup real mayo
  • ⅔ cup plain greek yogurt
  • 1 tablespoon taco seasoning
  • 1 tablespoon ranch dip mix
  1. First make your dressing
  2. Combine mayo, yogurt, taco seasoning, & ranch dip mix. Set aside in fridge
  3. In a very large mixing bowl, start to assemble your salad
  4. Combine: chicken, peppers, black beans, corn, tomatoes, onions, lettuce, cilantro, & avocados
  5. Drizzle with the dressing & toss
  6. Top with crushed tortilla chips and serve