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Thank you Deer Lord! for sponsoring this post. Grab your new edition of Deer Lord! social party game, available through Target retail stores starting July 30.


I'm a firm believer that game nights should be unassuming get-together's and only need three things: good friends, good food and of course a good game. You'll need to take care of the first one yourself, but today I've got the other two covered.

Have I mentioned before that I come from a family of gamers? Maybe I have, but I might not have described to what extent. Now, I'm not talking video games, I'm talking board and card games. First of all, my brother owned a board game store for over a decade. And my sister? Instead of a library of books, she has a library of games. It's an obsession, and I don't hate it. Needless to say, we know games. And today I'm introducing you to a new favorite!

There is a wide spectrum of games in the world. Some of my siblings enjoy strategy games that take up to 5 hours long (!!!), whereas I prefer party games that are relatively short and exciting, with lots and lots of laughter involved. Which is why this is my new favorite game, I was sooo pleasantly surprised with how much fun it was! In Deer Lord! you dupe and duel each other until someone gets rid of all their cards and is crowned the "deer lord." Dupes are secret missions you try to complete stealthily while the game is in play, either easy stuff like say something in a foreign language, or slightly more difficult like do a handstand. The trick is to make it natural enough that people won't realize it's a mission. The duels are my favorite. You challenge another player to the duel, things like who can fit the most items in their mouth, or who can tell the best joke. That's where things get really rowdy and fun! If you saw my Instagram stories last week (@gina.chong) you'll know I lost miserably at the fitting food in my mouth duel lol. And a duel for who can win a thumb war may or may not have ended in blood...like I said, we take our games seriously ha. The person who can get complete all of the dupes and duels in their hand first wins. At the end I didn't win the crown, but my cheeks were raw from laughing and I had become a fan. Love this game.

Deer Lord! started out in Europe as an independent game, but it got super popular and now it's available at Target! The one at Target is an updated core version that also includes the "Gangsta" and "Broadway" expansions. Highly recommend, guys. Whose checking it out on their next Target run?? While you're there, also grab the ingredients for my party snack recipe: Asian Style Nachos! With Korean flavored pulled beef and some other secret ingredients, I'm pretty proud of these, and here's a tip: they would be just as good over fries. So for your next game night, snag Deer Lord! at Target, grab these nacho ingredients, and get ready for a happy belly and sore cheeks from laughing. Happy gaming!







Asian Style Nachos
  • 6 oz. tortilla chips 
  • 1 lb chuck roast
  • 1/2 cup apple juice
  • 1/2 tsp onion powder
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp ginger, minced
  • 2 Tbsp soy sauce
  • 2 Tbsp brown sugar
  • 1 Tbsp sesame oil
  • 1 cup kimchi, chopped
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 Tbsp gochujang (red pepper paste)
  • 1/4 cup distilled white vinegar
  • 2 Tbsp soy sauce
  • green onions, chopped
  • Kewpie mayo
  • sriracha sauce
  • 1-1/2 cups Mexican cheese
  • guacamole

Directions:

Place chuck roast in pressure cooker or slow cooker. In a small bowl, whisk together the apple juice, onion powder, garlic, ginger, soy sauce, brown sugar and sesame oil. Poor over your roast. If cooking in a pressure cooker, use the red meat function to cook. If using a slow cooker, cook on high for 4 hours or until very tender. When done, use two forks to pull the beef into shreds, and return it to the pot to soak in the marinade until ready for use.

In a small bowl, combine the granulated sugar, gochujang, vinegar and soy sauce. Add the chopped kimchi and stir to coat. Heat a pan over med-high heat. Using tongs, add the kimchi to the pan, shaking off excess liquid. Cook kimchi for 5-6 minutes until the sauce is thick and the kimchi begins browning in spots. Remove from heat.

To Assemble:

Place your oven rack to the highest position. Set oven to a low broil. Place tortilla chips onto an oven-safe pan. Sprinkle with half your cheese, then half your kimchi and a generous amount of pulled beef. Sprinkle again with cheese, leaving just a Tablespoon or two, and follow with remaining kimchi and beef. Finish it off with the remaining cheese and broil until cheese is just melted. Once done, sprinkle with green onions, and drizzle with Kewpie mayo and sriracha. Serve guacamole on the side, and enjoy!


Caramelized kimchi recipe from HERE


I was selected for this opportunity as a member of CLEVER and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.


This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #CampbellsShortcutMeals #CollectiveBias





SHOP THE IMAGE ABOVE BY CLICKING THE PRODUCTS!

You know what's more stressful than going back to school? Going back to school for the first time in five whole years, yup. BUT there's always a good bit of excitement mixed in there, and for me it's just exciting to be able to finally pull the trigger after many many years of wanting to. So here I am, once again prepping for the back to school season along with everyone else, except this time I'm determined to do it right!


Back when I was in college I could not cook to save my life. Nightmares of over-salted (and I mean OVER. SALTED.) pork katsu and inedible kimbap sushi rolls come back to haunt me sometimes. Now that I know my way around a kitchen, I can actually put together a collection of quick, wholesome weekday dinner ideas for those busy nights ahead, and that is exciting. So I'm starting with the easiest of them all: these colorful Mexican Chicken Bowls. These are awesome because the only cooking required happens in your rice cooker, and even the chopping is minimal, yet it's such a hearty dish full of color and texture. It's made real easy with help from a couple Campbell Soup Company products, namely Swanson® Premium Chicken and Pace® Salsa Verde. The chicken reminds me so much of my college days because I literally survived on this home-canned chicken my mom stocked us up on, and was so sad the day that it ran out. That stuff is so yummy and versatile. I paired it all with some V8 +Energy®, which rounds this out to make it a meal any mom would be proud of.


So check out the recipe at the bottom. AND shop the items in this post by scrolling over and clicking in the photo below! So many great, quick meals that can be made with these same products check out more inspo HERE. What are your go-to fast dinners??







The Quickest Mexican Chicken Bowls
Serves 4
  • 2 cups Mexican rice
  • 2 cans (9.75 oz) Swanson® Premium Chicken
  • 2 tsp taco seasoning
  • 1 can corn
  • 1 can black beans, rinsed
  • 1 avocado, sliced
  • 1 pkg (16 oz) cherry tomatoes, quartered
  • 1/2 bunch cilantro, stems removed and chopped
  • Mexican cheese
  • Pace® Salsa Verde


Directions:


Cook rice according to instructions.


Combine the chicken and taco seasoning. Set aside. In a separate bowl, mix together the cherry tomatoes and cilantro and set aside.


Assemble bowls by filling first with rice, then dividing the remaining ingredients equally between four bowls: chicken, corn, beans, avocado slices, and the cherry tomato/cilantro mixture. Serve Mexican cheese and salsa verde on the side so that everyone can add to taste. Enjoy!




Thank you Village Harvest for sponsoring this post. Every day Village Harvest is planting seeds of change and growing possibilities, one bag of goodness at a time.


This summer has been a nonstop roller coaster for me, I can't even make it through two weeks before I have to be on the road again. I've been splitting my time between the Bay and Utah, so it's been quite an undertaking driving between the two so often. My favorite moments are when I get to sit down to a homemade meal because it feels like I have a semblance of normal, like I'm back in a routine again. Yesterday I completed another drive back to Utah, so today I was happy to sleep in, slap on some minimal makeup, make a run to the nearest grocery store, and spend the rest of the day indoors whipping up this colorful meal. That's what I call a good day.

I adore a good stir fry, and this is my favorite combo of sweet, salty and spicy, with a beautiful mix of colors and textures. I love the bright orange-flavored sauce and spoiled myself with an extra-tender cut of beef to put it over the top. The star of this dish, though, is the rice blend. Just look how stunning it is! The pretty summer colors of the veggies just look that much better against the canvas this beautiful black rice blend creates. It's Village Harvest's Organic Antioxidant Blend with black rice, black lentils and black quinoa, and my whole household has become infatuated with it. But I have more than one reason for loving it.

Besides this blend being yummy, fluffy, and pretty to boot, I love the idea of it. See, I actually eat this kind of thing quite often, it's very common in Korea to add a variety of grains and beans to rice to make it healthier. My mom calls it birthday rice. Having grown up poor farmers in post-war Korea, this kind of special rice was only enjoyed on their birthdays, hence the nickname. So I have a fond attachment to birthday rice, and these Village Harvest Organic Benefit Blends are so much more convenient and delicious than any blend I've created. Highly recommend the antioxidant blend I used for this dish, it's fluffy, delish, and sooo pretty. Check out my full recipe below.

I was able to find Village Harvest at my local Raley's and Safeway, and they carried all of the unique organic blends (Organic Ancient Grain Blend and Organic Protein Blend) EXCEPT this Organic Antioxidant Blend! Such a shame, but you know what you can do when that happens? Have you ever filled out a product request form? I found out about these glorious sheets of paper when I first moved to the Bay a few years ago. If your store doesn't have something you want, fill out a product request form so that they will start carrying it! You can do that for these Village Harvest blends so that you can enjoy birthday rice more than just on your birthday! Let me link you to a form right HERE, you're welcome. One of the cool things about Village Harvest is that they are committed to both environmental and social sustainability. One percent of their profits helps run programs that give back to the farmers and communities where they source their products, and they also donate 1% of their employees' time to charitable causes and sustainability efforts. That to me is the cherry on top of Village Harvest's delicious offerings.

So visit HERE to snag these yummy blends online and check out my recipe below. What favorite dish would you use these organic blends for??








Sweet + Spicy Orange Beef Bowl
Serves 4-6
  • 1lb beef, sliced thin*
  • 1/2 cup cornstarch
  • 1 medium zucchini, sliced
  • 1 medium yellow squash, sliced
  • 1 cup matchstick carrots
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 cup orange juice
  • zest of 1 orange
  • 1/4 cup + 2 Tbsp soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup + 2 Tbsp granulated sugar
  • 3 Tbsp sake
  • 1 tsp ginger, grated
  • 1-2 tsp crushed red pepper
  • 2 tsp cornstarch
  • oil
  • salt + pepper
  • 1 bag Village Harvest Organic Antioxidant Blend
  • roasted sesame seeds (opt.)
  • 3 green onions, chopped (opt.)

Directions:

Cook Village Harvest Organic Antioxidant Blend according to instructions.

In a small bowl, whisk together the orange juice, zest, soy sauce, sugar, sake, ginger, crushed red pepper and 2 tsp cornstarch. Set aside.

Place your beef in a medium bowl and lightly season with salt and pepper. Then sprinkle 1/2 cup cornstarch over it and mix, making sure the beef is coated. Heat a large pan over med-high and coat with about 1 Tbsp of oil. Add the vegetables and cook until tender, about 5 minutes. Sprinkle lightly with salt. Remove to a clean dish. In the same pan, add another Tbsp of oil and brown the beef on both sides, about 1-2 minutes. Remove to a plate covered with paper towels. Lower heat to medium and add 1 Tbsp oil. Saute the garlic for just about 10 seconds until fragrant and then pour in your orange sauce. Leave sauce at a gentle boil until reduced by half. Stir the beef into the sauce and cook about 2 minutes until beef is cooked through. Then add the vegetables and stir to coat. Remove from heat and serve over Village Harvest Organic Antioxidant Blend. Garnish with sesame seeds and green onions (opt.) and enjoy!

*I used a New York Strip, which was tender and excellent. Also can recommend sirloin.

I was selected for this opportunity as a member of CLEVER and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #SootheYourSoreSpots #CollectiveBias 

This summer is turning out to be quite eventful. I've been camping, hiking, road-tripping, visited LA, Vegas and Spokane, ran a half marathon, started a food club, and moved to Utah (partially). Today I get to add another of my favorite summer activities: backpacking!

I was not much of a camper growing up, so I had my first backpacking experience just last summer, and we immersed ourselves in it quickly. It's a perfect activity for us: I love hiking and taking in nature, and he loves waking up to a sky full of stars to take milky way photos. We've learned many things along the way, built up our backpacking supplies, and even upgraded some things. Towards the end of last summer we upgraded our bags, which was one of the more exciting things I've done in my life haha. It's so fun to get a shiny new bag that feels comfortable even with the hundreds of things inside. And this summer I was excited to upgrade our First Aid Kit. I mean look at that thing (you can also click and shop it in the photo above), it is just oh so cute. I packed it up with some key essentials including BENGAY® Ultra Strength Cream. There's a suh-weet deal going on at Target where if you buy 3 participating Johnson & Johnson products you get this Joy Cho-designed First Aid Kit bag for free! And you don't even have to go to the store, the deal will be applied automatically if you do it all online, check it out HERE.

I have reasons for choosing BENGAY® Ultra Strength Cream for my kit. On my first backpacking trip I was not so prepared. We hiked up a mountain in Tahoe and it was a gorgeous hike where we trekked through snow at the top and laughed when I clumsily fell into a river. But I didn't prepare myself for the high altitude and also had an old, uncomfortable backpack. The high altitude meant some altitude sickness, and I found myself climbing out of the tent at 2am to throw up (sorry TMI), and the uncomfortable backpack made for some mighty sore shoulders. So for me, backpacking equals sore shoulders, marathons equal swollen knees, gym lifting sessions equal achy joints...you get the point. BENGAY® Ultra Strength Cream is perfect for all of those things, it soothes, relieves and eases your sore spots, and it's a must in my cute new First Aid Kit. Oh, the know-how you learn as you become more experienced! I gathered all of the know-how I possess and created a backpacking checklist so that you don't forget anything or have to learn the hard way like me! Check it out below.

And make sure you take advantage of the First Aid Kit deal at Target before they run out of those cute bags! Here's a tip: the deal includes the 4 oz BENGAY® Ultra Strength Cream but not the 2 oz FYI! Shop for your Johnson & Johnson items HERE or click on my above shoppable image! What summer adventures would you take this cute First Aid Kit on??






Click my checklist below for a printable version!


So easy to get this awesome deal online:


©Johnson & Johnson Consumer Inc. 2017 The third party trademarks used herein are trademarks of their respective owners.

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, INC. and The Coca-Cola Company, all opinions are mine alone. #ColorMeHydrated #CollectiveBias

Hydration Headaches. Anyone else deal with these ALL the time?? I feel like my entire life is a battle against staving off these headaches, no joke. Towards the end of college I started getting headaches almost every other day. I had no idea where they were coming from, so I would just pop a pain reliever, cover myself in blankets as if I could hide from the pain, and try to sleep if off because it usually disappeared by the time I woke up. They became even more frequent as the year went on, and there were a couple of occasions it was so bad I was dry heaving over my toilet. See, the head pain is not even the worst part, the accompanying nausea is. This continued, with me making several theories over why, until one day someone suggested it might be dehydration. Um, whoa nelly! Why hadn't anyone told me before?? The pieces all fit together after that. It's true I've always had trouble getting enough liquids, and always wondered why my hubby had such an overactive bladder. Turns out it's quite normal to be going to the restroom that often....who knew. Fast forward to today, and I am so much better at predicting and avoiding these headaches now that I know hydration was the key. For example, travel, especially air travel, always dehydrates me so I try to drink as much as I physically can when on the road. Or I just wrapped up a half marathon so I was very careful about drinking before, after, and every two miles while training. Also, I've learned the art of chugging, a skill that took years to attain. One reason I was getting dehydrated all the time was simply because sometimes I just don't want to drink water. Sometimes it tastes bad to me, I can't help it. So I hydrate however I can, and one of my favorites is vitaminwater. It's yummy and also contains vitamins and electrolytes, a win-win.

Recently I did a little hike to Point Bonita Lighthouse, which is in Sausalito just north of San Francisco. Such a beautiful, interesting hike along the coast. It takes you through a rock tunnel made by Chinese immigrants, which is only open for 3 hours a few times per week, and you weave along the gorgeous sea cliffs until you make it to the lighthouse, the only lighthouse accessed by a bridge. I took along my vitaminwater ZERO as my hydration of choice and it was a lovely afternoon activity. What kind of stuff do you guys like to do to stay active?

vitaminwater makes a perfect companion for all your activities, and right now you can unlock a secret deal at Target to get 15% off. This is what you have to do:
1) Visit Target
2) Take a "shelfie" (a selfie in front of the vitaminwater shelf)
3) text your image to 89000 to receive the hidden Cartwheel offer link for 15% off a 20oz vitaminwater

Cool huh! Check out my "shelfie" at the bottom. What flavor will you use your shelfie offer on?? My favorite is Squeezed. Check out other ideas and tips on how to stay hydrated with vitaminwater ZERO HERE.












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