Category Archives: review

A Conglomeration

With my new (er, not so new anymore) blogging style, there’s a lot more useless blabber that ends up “on the cutting room floor,” as they say. With me, it’s more like on the bedroom floor and then covered with dirty clothes.
This leaves me feeling relatively out of touch with you lovely people, and I don’t like that! So…here’s some relatively mindless rambling that I deemed relatively useless at one point, and is probably still relatively useless, but I have nothing else to share. So there.
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I still eat pancakes like they’re going out of style. Because I work in phases, I’ve been loving sauteed apple as the topping of choice…though bananas still have my heart.
And are way cheaper.
And I’m welcoming applicants to start up a peanut flour business. I mean, I would think us bloggers alone are reason enough for TJ’s to keep it stocked, but apparently not.
Should we place bets on what the next hot food item will be? I don’t even know where to begin.
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In a traumatic event involving me trying to use Teddie’s right ear as something to hold onto whilst flying over his neck,he is now right earl-less. See?
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I have been loving on salads lately. I think a lot of it has to do with the fact that my mom bought me two huge tubs of lettuce and baby spinach, but we’ll just say that ever since the eggplant bacon caesar salad I’ve been getting cozy with a big bowl of greens pretty frequently.
My favorite salad add-in (save for buffalo tempeh) is red onion. I like to breathe stinky.
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L is the sweetest girl ever, after hearing my grumblings of whole wheat breadcrumbs being nonexistant in these parts. I had no idea what the strangely shaped package my mom brought me contained…
But I don’t think I’ve ever been so giddy about breadcrumbs before. If I was just a little bit crazier I’d had run right out and bought a sweet onion so I could make onion rings, but those football fans that are stocking up on Superbowl foods scare me. That and the Bruins game was starting in ten minutes.
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Speaking of Bruins, Thursday night’s game = four fights and a goal within the first minute. Four fights and two goals within…two minutes, I think? That is all. I love hockey. We won’t talk about today’s game, though.
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iHerb.com has the fastest and most reasonably priced shipping I’ve ever seen. And reasonably priced goods! And if you want to save $5 off your first order, you can if you enter in code WEZ004. Oh, and they always include fun samples! Well, everytime I’ve ordered anyway.
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I received a bunch of fun-sounding salt samples in my last Foodzie box, but I’m really disappointed to report that I don’t think my tastebuds are so delicate to pick up on any differences.
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It occurred to me the other morning, as I was driving to work at 7:00 am, wide awake and so ready for the day, that if I were as optimistic, outgoing and energetic at night as I am in the morning, I wouldn’t even be a real person.
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The other day I was chopping celery with my really sharp knife, and I somehow slid a finger over the top of the blade by the point. I thought I cut myself, and deep enough to warrant stitches or at least a lot of blood, so I dropped the knife and started freaking out, clutching my hand and waiting for blood to start spurting everywhere. It turns out I didn’t even break skin. I can be a little be dramatic. I guess.
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My mom is convinced she wants to take part in Meatless Mondays since she watched Oprah, but wants it to change to Meatless Tuesday so that I can be home to cook for it. Yes, I watched the Oprah episode. If you haven’t seen it, Nicole wrote a good post about it, and I left my thoughts there, too. But, hey, if my mom wants to have a meatless Tuesday, awesome.
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Sometimes, I get asked why I won’t post a recipe from a book.

My answer is simple: I am morally opposed to it.

Cooking is an art-form. Creating recipes is an art-form. Even if a list of ingredients can’t technically be copyrighted (how weird is it that it’s copyrighted and not copywritten?) I know how it feels to have work that you’ve created show up elsewhere without credit. I am talking about my photography, but I view it as the same concept. I know how ripped I get when I see people taking my photos, and I can only imagine how ripped published authors must get when they see recipes they’ve poured their heart and soul into to be published in a book appear on websites where people can go and get them without paying a single penny.

I’m all about supporting the author, not ripping them off. I have too much respect for them than to post their recipes will-nill on the internet. In case you’re wondering, yes, I also buy my music rather than downloading it for free. Again, respect and appreciation.

As for posting recipes from other blogs? Well – I understand that basically everything has been done before. If I see a recipe that is similar to one another but there’s hardly any mention of another recipe, I tend to give the author the benefit of the doubt that there was a similar thinking process. But using a recipe from another blog, saying so, and then posting the exact same recipe on your own blog? Well, I think link-backs are sufficient so that traffic can be directed their way as a sign of appreciation…but I think that’s just one of my little quirks.

And lastly, re: adaptations and inspirations. I link-back or don’t post the recipe if from a book if I keep mostly the same. C’mon…changing the flour or a couple spices doesn’t make it a unique adaptation. I don’t even think veganizing something with a flax-egg and earth balance makes it an adaptation. When I do that, I say it and link-back to direct people to the basic recipe and instructions. Only when I change a good number of things – say, at least 5 things that aren’t basic flour swaps, etc – will I just re-post the recipe. And even 5 things is a close-call to me. Take, for example, the chickpea recipe I posted the other day. I was tempted to just write out my swaps again instead of re-typing the recipe – but then sort of realized that by the time I wrote out the swaps it was just plain confusing. Had it been a blogger or book, I might have passed on reposting. But it being a free source I decided to just go for it. Am I guilty of the “I swapped the flour, so I adapted it!” label? Well, I can’t say for certain – but I bet if I looked through my baking tabs I’d find one or two back from my beginnings that aren’t quite as unique as I now require. Not hypocritical – I’ve just learned what respect is.

This was not directed at anybody or any certain event!! Just something I’ve been meaning to mention lately, since I’ve been cooking out of books so much lately. I would love to hear your thoughts on it, though. Am I just picky because, being a photographer, I know how it feels and can relate too much to the authors? Maybe. I mean, I feel bad when I give full disclaimer that something wasn’t my idea and someone comments saying “oh my god! you’re so creative! marry me!”

I just want to say “no no no!! I’m a terrible person, I’m not the cool one!”

26 Comments

Filed under baking, musings, random, review, salad, Uncategorized, vegan

Bacon. Mmm, Bacon…

I am in metaphorical foodie heaven.

Also known as…a plate full of my soon-to-be obsessions. I think the only reasons none of this is already an obsession is because I didn’t know it existed up until now. Or last night, if we’re talking onion rings.

Chavez Caesar Salad. With Eggplant Bacon.

And a side of homemade bread. (we’ll get there.) Oh and a couple onion rings. I had a few leftover and am rationing them two at a time so I can savor them over and over. I only have two left.

I already am plotting more excuses to “need” to get groceries so I can purchase a lifetime supply of sweet onions.

Fun fact: for just about the entire duration of my teen-hood, say from junior high to high school, you could bet $5 that whenever I’d/we’d go somewhere to eat, I’d be having a caesar salad or a caesar salad wrap. With chicken. Even after learning it had anchovies. And then something happened…maybe it was a caesar salad burnout. Maybe I was just too lazy to want to make my own once I started saving my pennies and stopped eating out for every meal.

But I finally geared up motivation to make a caesar salad (read: wasn’t feeling too lazy to clean the blender) and it. was. phenomenal. I don’t know how Isa thinks of these things, but seriously – this dressing is the caesar salads I remember.

Except better.

And you’d better believe I was picky about my salads. You’re probably thinking I was healthy even back then anyways, but honestly, for some reason I just had an inexplicable attachment to chicken caesar salads.

And then there’s the eggplant bacon.

Does it taste like bacon?

No! It’s eggplant!

Is it good?

Oh hell yes it is.

I was basically munching on it for the entire hour leading up to dinner. I’m lucky I had any left for my salad. I was never a “bacon-on-my-caesar-salad” kinda gal, but apparently I am an “eggplant bacon on my vegan caesar salad” kinda gal.

And here’s the kicker: I can make all of the above but apparently remembering about the bread I put in the oven is too difficult for my brain to handle.

Not to mention my other rookie mistake of completely forgetting to spray the plastic wrap I put over top while it rose, so of course when I went to pull it off I disrupted the entire top of it, beautifully risen and all.

But ohhhhh hot damn, this bread? Best loaf I’ve ever tasted. Hands-down. And unfortunately for you guys, I can’t give you the recipe.

Neener-neener-neee-ner!

Ahem. I’m sorry. That was incredibly rude of me. But this recipe was so generously passed along to me from a wonderful blogger friend. I’d really love to tell you because these acts of generosity deserve mentioning – but I’m afraid my ugly loaf would be an embarrassment, so instead I will choose to hold off until I make a prettier one.

Which won’t be very far away.

See, I fell in love with L’s idea of making mini loaves, so I halved the recipe and just made a mini loaf. My “problem” was that I’d make a normal sized loaf of bread and feel like I had to live off of sandwiches for fear if I didn’t have at least one a day, the bread would get wasted. Mini loaf? No problem.

Except…it’s almost all gone already. Mreh, well.

And as an aside – I need to publicly thank Jenn for being better support than WordPress is. She helped me figure out a way to publish the site I designed in iWeb for my photography! It’s got some kinks, but I feel so much more streamlined now 🙂 This blog’s gotta be next, though!

eventually.

What’s something you accomplished today? It took all morning – but I was so glad to get my site up. Far from done, but done enough to be public, I think. And at least better than what it was! I also did a bunch of schoolwork. Grumble.

Do/Did you have a favorite “restaurant meal”? Something you love to order out, but never make at home? I never made caesar salad (of course, I didn’t make myself anything back then!) but as mentioned – always ordered it out!

[Side note: Ask me how happy I was to have natural, real light to photograph my dinner. Go ahead, ask me! I’m so sick of using flash!]

21 Comments

Filed under bacon, baking, bread, cooking, dinner, food, healthy living, photography, review, salad, vegan, vegetable, vegetarian, veggies

Being Thrifty

Before we get started: I added the super simple and thrifty recipe for the stuffed peppers at the end of yesterday’s post.

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Today, I practiced being cheap. Thrifty, if you will.

I learned a few things.

Like the fact that some of the best pancakes in the world do not actually require the use of milk.

In fact, I can get by just fine – better, maybe – with the use of orange juice and yogurt.

Yogurt-Spice Pancakes for One

  • 1/4 c. + 1 T. flour (I used graham flour)
  • 1 1/2 T. wheat germ
  • 3/4 t. baking powder
  • 1/2 t. cinnamon
  • 1/4 t. nutmeg
  • 2 t. chia seeds mixed with 2 T. warm water, and allowed to gel
  • juice of one large orange
  • 1 t. vanilla extract
  • 2-3 T. yogurt (I used SoDelicious vanilla. aka crack in a cup)
  • butter/earth balance/non-stick spray, for greasing pan

Mix dry ingredients together. Add in chia egg, orange juice, extract and yogurt. Whisk until a thick batter forms. Divide into two pancakes on a pre-heated, greased non-stick skillet. Cook until golden on both sides.

The xtra ground nutmeg gives them that extra oomph of spice that the otherwise plain pancake batter lacks. And the yogurt gives them fluffy texture yet still moist.

But it’s what’s on top that makes them complete: cashew cream, maple cream and cashews. For the “cashew cream,” just mix ~1 T. cashew butter with 1-2 T. yogurt.

For the maple cream, buy it here and prepare to become an addict. I wanted to swim in it this morning.

It prepared me for a day of being cheap while shopping.

See, I spend too much money at the grocery store. I used to be pretty diligent about printing coupons and buying stuff on sale, but recently I’ve slipped. In case you couldn’t tell, because it’s not like I use twenty different flours at a time. hardee-har-har.

I’m not going to be too cheap with myself, but I realized last night how couponing can be such an addiction.

But maybe I’m just belligerent, and chose to see it as a challenge. Yes, I think that’s what it was. So maybe I only saved $8 this time. I’ll try harder next time.

But can I just be a little bit proud of myself for a second? Can I tell you why?

Because I only paid 9 cents (yes, cents) for this bag of sticks and twigs. Now sure, I don’t even know if I like them, but I’ve heard wonderful things about this company, but have always been too cheap to try them for myself. I’ll just make crackers myself! But 9 cents? I can’t make pretzels for 9 cents, people.

Oh, and just to share with you my relatively ridiculous obsession with cashews at the moment, I purchased 2 pounds of cashews today. (At $10, that means it was only $5/lb! oh, no – I really am becoming a bargain freak, aren’t I?!)

And I even decided to make my own hummus instead of paying $4 for my favorite brand.

Recipe a la Appetite for Reduction. I love how it’s basically pure chickpeas. No call for tahini or even very much oil, just pure chickpea bliss. Which is pretty thrifty, too.

I’m sure glad I decided to be thrifty a while back when I had a bitt too much bread on hand, and needed breadcrumbs – but I definitely should have ground them finer.

…so that they would stick to my onion rings!! Okay, when I first saw the O.M.G. Oven Baked Onion Rings in appetite for reduction, I sort of said “oh yeah! onion rings!”

Truth be told, I think I sort of forgot they existed.

I mean, the last time I was introduced to one was when I still thought vegetables would give me cooties.

As such, the recipe seemed fun, but maybe not one I’d go through the hoops of making.

But then fate happened.

(website being my photo website, i don't refer to my blog as "my website" baha)

Every time I’d pick up the cookbook, it’d open to onion rings.

And then I saw sweet onions on sale at the grocery store.

And then I realized I was thinking about them so much, they worked their way into a conversation. I was debating between making onion rings and getting work done on my photo website.

I chose onion rings.

My method needs help. It will come with time. I blame the breadcrumbs.

And by breadcrumbs, I mean mix of course homemade breadcrumbs and pretzel crumbs.

Don’t ask. It worked. These were damn fine onion rings. I ate them and ate them until my belly could take them no more. And I think I need to go finish the leftovers now. And go back to the store and get more onions to make them all week.

I need a condiment plate/bowl. Do those exist? Like, a single person-sized condiment/dip tray? Because that’d be perfect for my needs.

Oh, and in case you were wondering, this plate pretty much defines my life right now. Dates a la Gabriela (stuffed with almond butter and dark chocolate chips) and homemade pumpernickel with almond butter and/or maple cream.

Even if you, like myself, claim not to be a chocolate fan – you will love these dates. I promise.

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Filed under almond butter, baking, breakfast, cooking, dates, dessert, dinner, food, food blog, healthy living, hummus, lunch, nut butter, pancakes, recipe, review, shopping, snack, sweet potato, vegan, vegetable, vegetarian

Appetite for Reduction: A Review

I feel so refreshed. Rejuvenated. Reassured.

Like I’m running through fields of daisies on a sunny, blue-skied summer day.

errr….what? Okay, so maybe that’s a little bit dramatic. But really, as soon as I read the first two pages of Isa Chandra Moskowitz’s new book, Appetite for Reduction, I just about took a huge sigh of relief.

As you may recall, my last cookbook purchase left me, to put it lightly, underwhelmed. I didn’t waste very long jumping on my computer and finding one to soothe my disgruntled feelings towards said book, and I knew Isa would have something for me. Truth be told, I don’t know why I didn’t just get it from the get-go, because when I saw the same author of my beloved Veganomicon had an even newer book out that had previously slipped under my radar, I was jumping in my seat with excitement.

I realize I could have been playing with fire; after all, Skinny Bitch was a “diety” type book, and here I was buying Appetite for Reduction – “125 Fast and Filling Low-Fat Vegan Recipes.” What am I trying to do here, watch my weight?!

Well, no. But I usually appreciate a health conscious book, and had faith that Isa (first-name basis) would have a much better attitude about it than Skinny Bitch. After all, this is the spunky, funny author from Veganomicon, you know.

Reading the preface, I knew I made the right decision. You can see for yourself – Isa isn’t pushing beliefs on anybody…

…and rather, being healthy to “enjoy food, enjoy life, and do what makes you feel good.” These recipes are not restrictions. They are not “diety.” And the message is not that you need to be skinny to be healthy. It is that different things work for different people, and everybody has her choice. And this just so happens to be what works for her, and boy am I glad…because the recipes she shares in this book?

Phenomenal.

I couldn’t find a single uninteresting recipe, and even though the vegan mastermind has written multiple books in the past, myself already owning two of them, I don’t feel like I’ve “seen them before.” There are classics. There are funky twists on classics. There are new creations and there are comfort foods. And they are good for you.

The feeling I get is that Isa isn’t necessarily trying to make these meals low-fat…but rather, realizing that excess oil, sugar and unrefined carbs are easily replaced – and so, if it’s a benefit to all involved and there is absolutely no loss in the final dish, why not “lighten up”?

It was difficult for me to narrow it down to a single recipe to make, but reading Isa’s explanation of each dish helped. For this Tempeh Helper recipe, she shared her nostalgic memories of Hamburger Helper as a child, and it flashed me back to being younger and helping with boxed dinners, too. With those memories in mind, I knew what I wanted for dinner.

Tempeh Helper! Creamy, “cheesy,” “hamburger”-y deliciousness.

…except, I imagine this to be way “more better,” as they say in these parts. Mo’ betta’ if you’re like me.

This recipe incorporated tempeh as the hamburg, and a nooch sauce as the cheesey sauce. The nooch sauce was way mo’ betta’ than the sketchy plasticy, yellow cheese that you get from hamburger helper, and of course the tempeh was much more animal friendly than some ground beef 😉 Not to mention the fact that there are fresh vegetables rather than freeze dried.

What I love most about this book? There is no calling for random, specific ingredients that one would rarely have, or random pre-made ingredients that you’d rather make yourself. This cheese sauce consisted of nutritional yeast (okay, now that I think about it, maybe that is a random ingredient…but I think a lot of vegans are at least in the know of it!) garlic powder, flour, water and a couple other seasonings.

Nowhere in the book was there call for vegan mayonnaise, but if you’d like to make your own, there is a recipe.

I can’t find a recipe calling for vegan cheese,

and nor can I find a recipe calling for vegan cream cheese.

Hallelujah.

When all was said and done, this was a delicious meal, and even my mom liked it. I don’t think she knows what tempeh or nutritional yeast is no matter  how many times I tell her, but sometimes ignorance is best.

After all, it’s only after I’m asked what tempeh is that I’ll say it’s fermented soybeans. If we’re taught all our life to avoid fermented products, how’s it look to someone else when I say I’m eating fermented soybeans?

But that’s irrelevant. Back to the matter at hand.

I can’t sing enough praise for Isa’s Appetite for Reduction, and believe it may be my new favorite. But still, to be fair, I’ll pick it apart in pros and cons, just like I did for Skinny Bitch.

Pros:

  • Wide array of recipes, each feeling like they’re adding something to the pot. You won’t find recipes that have been published a thousand times before.
  • No calling for random, ridiculously expensive or hard to find ingredients.
  • No reliance on products like vegan cheese, vegan meat (except homemade seitan), vegennaise, tofutti, etc.
  • Majority are easy and quick to prepare.
  • Nutritional information, which could be a con for some people, I understand. However, the cool thing is that you aren’t just told calories, protein, fat, sodium, etc. This book also includes iron, vitamin c and other vitamins and minerals, too!
  • Inexpensive. And most of the recipes are, too!

Cons:

  • Show nutritional information for each recipe (see above)
  • No dessert/snack/breakfast recipes, which isn’t too terribly unappealing to me seeing as how I’ve got plenty of other resources and not to mention the fact this is the same woman who authored Vegan Cookies Invade your Cookie Jar and VCTOW, but a healthy snack recipe or two are never overlooked in my book 😉
  • With 125 recipes, there’s 125 new recipes I want to make now, so it’ll take me a year to get around to making everything. (As you can tell, I’m really grasping at straws to find more cons here…)

Do you own this book? If so, what should I make next?!

What’s a childhood meal you remember helping to make?

24 Comments

Filed under review, Uncategorized

I’m Blue (Daba de Daba Di)

It wasn’t a conscious decision on my part…but the theme of the day was blue.

It started with moldy blueberry pancakes…

…packing a blueberry muffin Larabar…

…and then realized my blueberry-filled morning matched my blue hoodie…

…and by the end of the day, I felt like my hands, lips and toes were blue, too!

…Luckily, it just felt that way…which is sort of ironic to say because usually, with any luck, they won’t feel blue, either!

Anyways. You’re probably still confused by the “moldy pancake” mention, so I’ll enlighten you.

They’re buckwheat! Poor buckwheat has been getting neglected on my pantry shelf. And if I’m being completely real with you all, it’s because I wasn’t sure how well the flavor of buckwheat would go with a nut butter, and I don’t like passing on the peanut/almond/cashew butter in the morning.

There, I said it. I base the flavors of my breakfast off of how well I think the nut butter I have in mind will meld with it.

Finally I decided it couldn’t be that bad with some almond butter, and did it up with some blueberry buckwheat pancakes. I am ashamed to admit that I’d sort of forgotten about my love for buckwheat until I was organizing my recipe pages yesterday, and remembered my banana bread buckwheat waffles.

I decided to give blueberries a shot, as I don’t recall ever having them paired with buckwheat, but still topped it with half a grilled banana, almond butter and maple syrup. Real Vermont maple syrup, thank you. As you can see, we take our maple seriously. And you guys always thought I was joking about it.

Blueberry Buckwheat Pancakes

1 serving

  • 1/4 c. buckwheat flour
  • 2 T. oat bran
  • 1 T. wheat germ (optional)
  • 1/2 – 1 t. baking powder (to be honest I never measure)
  • 1/4 c. + 2 T. almond milk
  • 2 t. chia seeds mixed with 1 1/2 T. water and allowed to “gel”
  • 1/4 c. fresh or frozen blueberries
  • earth balance or butter, for frying
  • toppings, such as: maple syrup, almond butter, banana

Preheat a non-stick pan over medium heat.  Combine the dry ingredients. Mix in the almond milk and chia egg. Fold in the blueberries.

Grease the pan with a light layer of butter before spooning the batter in two portions onto it. Cook until the sides look like they are beginning to set, and then flip and cook about 3 more minutes on that side.

Top with almond butter, maple syrup and a grilled banana or more blueberries.

Ohhh, buckwheat – how could I neglect you all these weeks?

As for the new Larabar flavor that this sweet & charming young lady hooked me up with?

Well, I’m actually pretty surprised I broke into it right away. Usually things like this I hold onto because I can’t find them, so I have this warped sense of “but I need to cherish it!” similar to how all of our grandparents hold on to every. last. thing. due to the Great Depression.

Or something like that.

But no. There was no waiting. I was too excited. Ironically, I wasn’t even hungry for a snack today but since I’d opened it before leaving home I wanted to at least have a bit of it! So I did, and saved the other half for dessert.

Now. You’d be hard-pressed to find me a Larabar I dislike. Sure, I have my preferred flavors and all – but with how simple they are and given the fact that they’re date and nut based, I can’t say I hate any of them. Not even a little bit.

This blueberry muffin flavor was no exception. But! As with most things in life (gosh darn it!) there is room for improvement. Larabar, I would enjoy a. a stronger blueberry flavor, and b. a little lemon zest. I feel these things will bring your blueberry muffin Larabar to an entirely new level altogether.

Unfortunately, things like this tend to be easier said than done, and here’s where everyone at Larabar is throwing up their arms and asking me if I want to start making them. In which case the answer is surely!

Have you ever tried buckwheat before?

What’s your favorite Larabar flavor?

(and as for putting this song in your head after reading the title of this post? you’re welcome. don’t hate me. please?)

29 Comments

Filed under almond butter, banana, breakfast, buckwheat, cooking, foodblog, health, health food, healthy living, lunch, nut butter, pancakes, recipe, review, vegan

Lists

Apparently, I’m ready to start my own dirty-girl competition.

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Yeah. Needless to say, I needed to go shopping.

Other confession? I’m awful with lists. Sure, I’m great at making them. I’m just terrible at not losing them. Or not remembering to bring them. And without some sort of reminder, I have a hard enough time remembering what happened yesterday, let alone whether I’m out of “salad lettuce” or not.

You know where I’m going with this. I forgot my list when I went to the store after work. It’s okay, though – it’s sort of become a game to me. The “Lets see what I can remember!” game.

It also meant I had to go up and down every aisle in the packed-to-bursting Hannaford’s to trigger memories of what I needed. I totally forgot I needed brown sugar until I saw it in the produce aisle. Don’t ask me what it was doing there, I’m just glad it was.

As a side note: if you go shopping between now and Christmas you might be clinically insane. It’s a madhouse out there, and I’m lucky I’m still alive. In fact, when I pulled in, there were a bunch of firetrucks throughout the plaza with their lights flashing. No one stopped me from going in and no one else seemed too concerned…so you know, just doing my grocery shopping while firefighters and trucks are running around, NBD.

I had to save the squashes and mushrooms and lettuces from the potentially-burning building, you know.

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I went to the co-op before going to the big store, though. I’ve found I much prefer the Rhapsody tempeh over Lightlife, and also needed some bread. Obviously, I wound up walking out of there with more like $37 worth of groceries and not just tempeh and bread, but that’s a story for another day.

This weekend is my mom and I’s holiday baking extravaganza, so I knew I wouldn’t get a chance to bake bread. I intended to get a fresh loaf from a local bakery, but when I saw these was way more intrigued. See, I’ve been on more of a “bread as a side” kick, so thought these Ozery Bakery pita-type wraps would be good to stuff.

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I’m sure the idea is to mimic the Arnold sandwich thins, but with less preservatives and…well, way better taste. I like that they’re not too thin – after buying them I started regretting my decision, thinking it wouldn’t be “enough bread.”

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Luckily, that was not the case at all. I had one lightly toasted, smothered with hummus and then packed with tempeh bacon, herb salad, roasted reds and tomato slices.

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And now I’m sipping tea while pondering whether I really want to tackle that homework I intended to do tonight. I actually intended to get out of work early so I could hit the store and get home sooner than usual – but by the time I could leave work and battle the crowds, I didn’t get home until I usually would be, anyway!

What kind of bread is your favorite – thick and hearty, wraps, pitas, bagels, english muffins?

17 Comments

Filed under bread, dinner, lunch, review

Always Room for Something New

There’s always room and opportunity to try new things – usually, it’s just a matter of whether we want to venture out from our usual routine and just go for it.

I’ll be the first to admit it – I’m one to get stuck in food ruts. It doesn’t help that by now, I tend to know what kinds of foods I like ad what I dislike.

But busting out of ruts? Quite fun! I mean – it doesn’t mean your diet needs a complete makeover. Just twists to your favorites; thinking outside of the box!

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Cranberry-Orange oatmeal? First thought – no thanks. I like bananas in my oatmeal, not citrus fruits. Upon completion? Oh my God, I must have this again tomorrow.

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  • 1/3 c. quick oats
  • 1/8 c. oat bran
  • 2 t. chia seeds
  • 1 c. almond milk
  • 2 T. homemade cranberry sauce
  • zest of half an orange
  • juice of one orange

Microwaved, and topped with:

  • a drizzle of maple syrup
  • orange zest
  • cranberry-orange nut sauce
  • walnuts
  • almond butter

and then, there’s mixing up lunch.

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I realize this doesn’t look appealing – but rather than being all about sandwiches lately, I’m all about using the bread as a side to some sort of comfort dish. Like Italian Sweet Potato Gratin.

I’m not sure if this has more to do with the passing of a sandwich craze, or the fact that my bread isn’t big enough to create any sort of reasonable sandwich.

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And sometimes, instead of bread – some sort of cracker for dipping into hummus. Or pretzels. because Gabriela said it best – pretzels trump crackers when it comes to hummus dipping. My favorite is Snyder’s.

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I’m loving hot apple cider lately as a warm-me-up beverage. I can’t have more than one cup of coffee lately, and though I love tea – sometimes something sweet is nice!

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I’ve raved before about Sahale Snacks, but these cashews are a new flavor to me…and definite winners.

I had the thought the other day to try and make a nut butter from one of their nuts – but I don’t think a bag could last that long!

I’m always bringing snacks like this to keep at work in case I get a minor case of the munchies – but lately they’re coming in more handy than usual. I dream of having the luxury to sit down and calmly eat a banana and peanut butter these days – there’s just no time before another customer walks in the door! Today I about shoved a half a banana + peanut butter in my mouth all at the same time because customers suddenly flooded us.

Of course, I realized after that that was a really bad idea because then I just had a mouth full of banana and peanut butter. Attractive.

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New fruit? Check. I’ll eat anything that is buy-a-5lb.-bag, get one free.

Please don’t offer me a five pound bag of avocados. Blech.

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And you know you’re really a little wacky when you spend your evening debating salad blends. A good wacky, though. This fresh herb salad caught my eye, and sounded interesting. Why not try? I really enjoy it…just one problem:

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The dill is too overpowering! I guess that’s sort of the point, though. It is, after all – an herb salad.

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Yes, my mushroom obsession is still in full-swing. Not only to they taste pretty good in a salad – does anything smell better than mushrooms and onions sauteeing in a bit of olive oil?

Okay – maybe if there were garlic in that equation it would smell better, but for some reason I just wasn’t feelin’ that tonight.

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And for a brand-spankin’ new dessert courtesy of Foodzie?

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An Effie’s oatcake. I wasn’t sure what to expect because I don’t know that I’ve ever had a oatcake – but these are far superior to any sort of cracker/packaged cookie I’ve had previously. I was going to spread jam on it per suggestion, but I’m glad I tried it plain first. Even though I am a self-proclaimed “dipper” doing such with these oatcakes would just hide their delicate flavor and texture given to them by real butter. The oatmeal adds a lovely nutty flavor, too. If these oatcakes are this good – I can only imagine what their nutcakes taste like!

What about you – what’s something new you’ve tried/done/made lately?

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Filed under breakfast, dinner, lunch, oatmeal, review