Is it just me or do women’s bathing suits seem to be getting smaller and smaller with each passing year?
Maybe it’s just that I prefer to believe that they’re getting smaller than the alternative…
Although my 12-year may insist that it’s just that fact that she now wants to wear one of the itsy-bitsy pieces of spare cloth that has me objecting so strongly to their obvious decrease in stature! There may be some truth to that…
Since the pressure to look good in these miniscule bikinis starts somewhere around New Year’s with the yearly onslaught of New Year’s Resolution crap and only gains steam as summer approaches, I’m always on the lookout for ways to reduce calories without sacrificing flavor.
I found this new Light Cider from Michelob ULTRA that’s sure to be welcome at any bikini clad summer party. Or not bikini clad if you prefer…
Doesn’t it just scream drink me?
While I typically think of cider as a fall drink, Anheuser-Busch has really made this a win-win for summer. This crisp and refreshing mild cider is great alone or poured over a tall glass of ice. And it makes a pretty killer Apple Cider Sangria, if I do say so myself… It’s not only less sweet than a traditional hard cider but it also has 1/3 less calories.
Being that it’s naturally sweetened and made from hand-picked apples I knew it would be the perfect complement to a nice light dinner with sliced Braised Fennel and Green Apples. The mild sweetness and tang in the cider really enhances the flavor of the fennel.
If you prefer to make this as a side dish, or vegetarian, simply omit the Chicken and Apple Smoked Sausage and substitute vegetable stock in place of chicken stock.
As an added bonus, it can all be made in just one pot, which leaves more time for hanging out at the beach in that bikini. Although on second thought, maybe that’s not such a good thing…
1 large fennel bulb
2 tbs. vegetable or canola oil
1 – 12 oz. pkg. chicken and apple smoked sausage links (or 4 links)
1 c. onion, roughly chopped
1 tbs. garlic, minced
1 green apple, cored and thinly sliced
1 c. chicken stock
2 tsp. fresh thyme
Salt and Pepper to taste
Cut of the fronds and stalks of the fennel and set aside for another use. Remove the core of the fennel bulb and set aside with the fronds and stalks. Cut the remainder into 2” x ½” strips. One large bulb should yield approximately 3 cups of fennel. Set aside until ready to use.
Heat the oil in a large Dutch oven over medium heat. Add sausage links and brown lightly. Once browned, remove the sausages from the pan and set them aside.
Add the onions to the pan, and cook 2-3 minutes. Add garlic and continue cooking till the onion is soft and translucent, about 5 minutes.
Stir in the fennel strips and the sliced apple, and cook till tender-crisp, approximately 10 minutes.
Deglaze the pan with the hard cider, simmering for 2-3 minutes to burn off the alcohol.
Add the chicken stock and thyme and return the sausages to the pan, making sure to nestle the sausages at least halfway down into the liquid.
Simmer for 15-20 minutes until the fennel and apple are soft. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
For more information, visit the sponsor’s site.
Which favorite summer meal or activity do you think would go best with Michelob ULTRA Light Cider? Check out the Michelob ULTRA Light Cider page on Blogher.com to see what other bloggers think!