Fourth of July Celebratory Dinner and Dessert

Well, Jesse and I had a pretty chill Fourth of July this year. Normally, we go to Bend to be with friends, ride in the annual ‘Freedom Ride,’ and have a crazy good time. We weren’t able to go this year for a few different reasons, so we stayed in town and did our own thing. We sat outside on the patio, relaxed and ate some good food, but no fireworks … we didn’t really care (we sure could hear ’em around the neighborhood though).

No drinks for me, but Jesse indulged in a few … and a few more! He was celebrating in his own way. Whenever I do choose to indulge in a beverage, it’s usually a small glass of Crispin Honey Crisp Hard Cider (it’s gluten free with no added preservatives or sugar!) or good quality vodka with fresh-squeezed grapefruit juice. One drink is enough to make me dizzy and tipsy (seriously), so generally I never have more than that, but on occasion I’ll have two. I very, very rarely drink though because I don’t particularly like the way it makes me feel. More often than not, I’d rather have a coconut water. I did try a (nonalcoholic) Tiki Juice though, which I wasn’t too impressed with despite the happy look on my face below. It’s made from rooibos tea and has different botanicals added to it – in this case, stress-relieving botanicals. It was the only flavor of the two available that didn’t have added sugar. By no means am I stressed right now (I think I’m the happiest I’ve ever been in my adult life!), but I still wanted to try it. Needless to say, I won’t buy it again. It was basically iced rooibos tea and I’m not a big rooibos tea fan in the first place.

Alisa with Tiki Juice
Me with my not-so-special Tiki Juice.

We had a spectacular dinner of grass-fed tri tip steak, which I pan seared in butter with salt and pepper and then finished in the oven, roasted asparagus, tossed salad made with lettuce from our friend’s garden and homemade vinaigrette, crimini mushrooms sautéed in steak juices and butter, and a dessert of fresh berries with half-and-half 24-hour yogurt (drained to make it even thicker) and a drizzle of honey on top. Oh, there was second dessert too because I found a recipe that I wanted to try pronto … almond butter freezer fudge. Thank you to Theresa Fisher’s blog for that one. It is awesome! Theresa’s recipe calls for peanut butter, but I don’t and can’t eat peanuts, so I used almond butter instead. I used 1/4 cup of honey, rather than a 1/2 (it calls for 1/4 – 1/2 cup) and subbed pure almond extract for the vanilla because I was fresh out. I also added one tablespoon of organic butter to the mixture for added creaminess. For ease of cleanup and cutting, I lined the pan with foil before pouring in the fudge mixture, which worked like a charm. Seriously, this is such an easy recipe and SO FRIGGIN’ GOOD … almost too good!

Overall, it was a pleasant Fourth of July and nice to spend it at home. How about you … what did you do for the Fourth and what sorts of goodies did you eat?

Almond butter fudge mixture
Stirring the almond butter fudge mixture.
Fourth of July feast
Fourth of July feast.
Almond butter freezer fudge
Almond butter freezer fudge.
Berries with half-and-half 24-hour yogurt
Local strawberries, blueberries and raspberries with half-and-half 24-hour yogurt and a drizzle of honey.
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