…and my home was exploding with a succulent, fresh fruit. But which one? Ohhh, now there’s the cliffhanger! Because some other things happened first.
Although, on a day off – waffles almost always happen first, don’t they?
I’m trying to wean myself a bit from maple syrup. Not because I’m trying to quit, but because I’m nearing my last couple tablespoons and just like everything else I end up loving, it’s expensive. If only I wasn’t so stubborn and didn’t need to have the real stuff. I hope I’m not the only one who starts using less of something just because they don’t want it to be gone/have to buy more.
Where am I going with this?
I used the same batter as I did Tuesday with the puffed millet and all, though omitted the figs and used honey instead of maple. I think I added a few banana slices and more cinnamon, too.
And then topped with a melted banana (mixed with some cinnamon and golden raisins), sunflower seed butter, earth balance, honey, and honey roasted peanuts. And why yes, I did scorch the first waffle. There were some leprechauns in my cabinet who decided it’d be fun to switch my waffle iron’s toasting level to a 5 (as in, reallyreally dark) rather than the 3 that I typically use.
Luckily, I’ve never been one to discriminate.
Typical Thursday shenanigans ensued, such as yoga, baking, and messing around online. Baking before “barning” is becoming a typical Tuesday and Thursday occurrence. Today I made a batch of Super Charge Me Cookies to bring in to work tomorrow. And to eat when they came out of the oven.
You know, normal stuff.
I used chopped dates for the dried fruit, dark chocolate chips, 1/3 c. white whole wheat (the other 1/3 being the spelt – I ran out after that though) and halved the maple syrup, making up for the rest of the liquid with almond milk. Oh, and finished off the Naturally Nutty Butter Toffee peanut butter that never even got shown on the blog. Mainly because I wasn’t a huge fan of the flavor, so would either use it while baking stuff (granola bars, these cookies, the last cookies) or at night with some pretzels.
I also got a little carried away with a blog makeover. I’m still not certain I like the new look, but I was bored of the old one.
I get bored easily.
Unfortunately, there weren’t any wordpress layouts that knocked my socks off, so I’m a bit stuck.
I cleaned out the horses here and messed with them a bit before throwing together a small sandwich for lunch. Or a really large snack. I’m not sure which. It was only 11:30, but I was mildly hungry and leaving to meet my mom.
I was still feelin’ the PBBH vibe, and opted for a peanut butter, banana chip, honey, and pretzel sammich to meet my every wish and desire. I’d been neglecting this small slice of bread, brushing it off as too small – which ended up being just right for me to be able to pile on the peanut butter.
You will note that not a single veggie made an appearance in this lunch.
Can you tell I need to go shopping?
Either way – this was delicious. The bread was toasted, which made it even more delicious – melty and oozy. That and I’ve been a bit obsessed with putting pretzels in any of my sandwiches lately. You should try it.
Yes – this is what fifteen pounds looks like. It was easily done, considering half the berries are the size of a small meteor.
I think this was the first time we froze instead of baked while picking berries – usually we end up going on the hottest days — but this morning, it was sprinkling off and on, and getting quite windy.
Mix that with how wet the berries are, and we turned the heat on as soon as we got in the car. Our hands were rather frozen.
But, since we’re crazy we still went to that barn.
I drove like I had a 2-day-old child in my back seat.
Any sharp turn or break, and the precious berries would go flying all over my car.
Once we got home from pony play-time, though – I got to work cutting berries while my mom made her biscuits for shortcake. I tried convincing her to mix it up a bit – I saw a recipe for ginger spelt scones somewhere, but she wouldn’t budge from her grandmother’s biscuit recipe.
Some things just can’t be changed, I guess.
I almost made some coconut flour biscuits for myself – but knew I’d want one and then end up just eating the berries, so I didn’t bother.
She did, however – use Xagave!
I was psyched upon seeing all the goodies – thanks, Robin! Can never have too many cookbooks – and there’s tons of great recipes in here. I’ll be sure to review the XAgave as I use it, too. It’s different than typical agaves because it’s the blend of two organic agave nectars – white and blue – which lends itself to being great to bake with, supposedly.
My mom and I’s observations on the use of it in the biscuits? We split a “sampler” hot out of the oven – She mentioned they weren’t as sweet as they usually are, though I thought they were just fine. That and it’s been two years since I’ve had her biscuits since I wasn’t living at home this time last summer, so I wouldn’t remember something like that anyways. I don’t think she used as much as she was supposed to, she mentioned she wasn’t sure how much to use. Regardless – it wasn’t a complaint. My rationing was that the berries are sweet enough that the biscuit doesn’t need to be.
Additionally, I commented that it was much lighter and moister than usual – a definite plus. She said the same thing. I wouldn’t say this to her, but usually I find biscuits to be too dry, and would rather just the berries and ice cream. Not just her biscuits, but biscuits in general. These were pleasantly soft, moist, almost cake-like – but still flaky. Make sense? Probably not.
Dinner? jess, have you lost your mind?
Ohhh, no, my friends.
In fact – this strawberry sauce took inspiration from tons of different sources. First, my mom – ever since she mentioned that she went to a diner that served their sweet potato fries with a raspberry sauce. And then a cherry balsamic sauce in the Xagave cookbook. And finally, Brandi’s recipe for strawberry basil scones.
Maybe a scone recipe as inspiration for my dinner does make me look a little loco, but just hear me out. It was delicious.
- 5 medium sized strawberries, sliced
- 1 dried fig, diced
- 2 T. water
- 1 T. balsamic vinegar
- crushed red pepper flakes (to taste)
- 1-2 T. Xagave (to taste)
- 1/4 t (?) dried basil
- dash garlic powder
- freshly choped chive
- salt and pepper
Simmer the strawberries and figs in the water until beginning to form a gel-like consistency, about 7 minutes. Stir in the Xagave and seasonings, and continue to stir frequently over low heat, about 5 minutes.
Add in the balsamic, and simmer over low heat, stirring frequently, about 5-7 minutes.
It was great over the broccoli and sweet potato fries, and even the butter bean cutlet, much to my surprise. There’s leftover – so expect to be seeing it again soon.
Okay, expect to be seeing mass amounts of strawberries in general over the next couple days. Or weeks. Month, maybe…
I used a homemade peanut butter banana bran muffin for my “biscuit,” and the lack of ice cream encouraged the use of cottage cheese. Slice strawberries, cinnamon, walnuts, and agave finished the loveliness.
…and then a beautiful bike ride. It’s nicer out now than it has been all day!
The Teddie Chronicles
You know the feeling of “it’s my day,”? It’s sort of as obvious as when it isn’t your day – you just know it. And that’s how I felt every time I would think about Teddie this morning.
This was our day.
And it was – he was once again, great. I think he’s really starting to remember everything. I only wish I could know what he has to remember! Anyways – we had our first trot undersaddle, and canters in both directions on the lunge. You can tell he’s pretty unbalanced, so for now just a few strides each direction until he builds more muscle is fine. He’s been doing this strange nicker thing, too – I don’t know if it’s a love noise or what he’s trying to say! He’ll always make it as I dismount, and then turns his head to face me – and occasionally as we’re just standing. At first I was worried I’d hurt him somehow, but now I think it’s more of a friendly thing?
I’m thinking I’ll switch to a mullen mouth bit for him, though. I’m wondering if his small pony mouth is uncomfortable with a traditional snaffle. Any equestrians wanna weigh in?
My mom called about the haffie ponies this morning, too. She made a deal with the person, and looks like we’ll be taking them. I should mention that we’re not dealers or people just looking to make money. We saw these ponies when we were just beginning my hunt for a pony, but passed just to find something a little more “broke.” The mare was sort of just yanked out of the pen, thrown a saddle on and bit, and “ridden.” She wasn’t bad, but she wasn’t stellar – and honestly, had probably never been ridden in her life. We were offered a deal for both of them for a song, but passed. My mom kept thinking about them, though, saying they’d still be a fun project – and once she heard about where they were headed had to act after taking costs and time into consideration.
In the nick of time, too – they were going to be shipped out next week. We intend to bring them back to “civilization,” and find good homes for at least one of them.
So – just wanted to get that out there that we’re not just taking in a bunch of horses to make a quick buck.