Tag Archives: almond butter

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. ย 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

Three-Sixty

Heyyyy lovess. Early Tuesdays! In case you’ve forgotten ๐Ÿ˜›

I’m so glad we’ve finally got sunshine back – and I hope you do, too! It didn’t start out that way, though – I did not want to get out of bed this morning for anything! I even “slept in” (aka. 6:30 – but I dragged it to 6:45) and was still groggy. The thoughts of having to go to class were not helping my mood, and I woke up with a slight headache. Not a happy camper. But – don’t worry – this isn’t going to be a whiner post! You’ll see ๐Ÿ™‚

After much grumbling and stalling more, I dragged my bum into the kitchen and rocked some cherry oats.

By “rocked,” I mean that the base was equal parts oat bran and rolled spelt flakes, vanilla extract, frozen cherries, trail power, and topped with flax, chia-acai icing, crystallized ginger, dried currants, coconut, and frozen cherries simmered in almond milk and some chopped almonds. Additionally, even I couldn’t deny the fact that this bowl was deserving of a couple dark chocolate chips!

But the real star of the show?

Remember how I mentioned I ordered 3 nut butters from Naturally Nutty way back when I placed my order? Well, I’ve stil only had the White Chocolate Coconut because I don’t like having toooo too much open at one time. Well – I’d be a fool to not use White Chocolate Cherry Almond Butter while it’s sitting in my cupboard! And I was not prepared for what I saw upon opening:

Uhm, are you KIDDING me?! Naturally Nutty, you’ve outdone yourself. I already thought you were simply amazing for your White Chocolate Coconut peanut butter – but can you believe that cherry goodness in this jar?! Me neither. But how did it taste? Oh, you know, no big…just similar to how winning the lottery would taste. I cannot wait to try every single one of their flavors. I need to step up the nut-butter consumption so I have justification to order again soon.

It was so frigid out this morning. I guess not by Vermont standards – but by recent standards, for sure! It’s been relatively warm in the mornings – 25 or so – but not this morning! I snapped these photos as fast I could, and had to microwave the bowl before digging in.

This meant I also wanted to nuke my coffee – and this operation turned into one gigantic fail. Try fitting a square bowl and a cup of nearly full coffee in a microwave (re: a turntable microwave, as most all are) and imagine the outcome when the plate tries to turn and there’s not enough room for both objects. Got it? Okay, if you’re imagining correctly, you’re seeing coffee all over the place. Yeah – not my brightest moment. And given that I was still in a “I hate school.” mood – this did not help.

Eventually, I sat down and generated a list of reasonable excuses to not attend class:

1. It’s supposed to be nice out today.

2. I don’t feel like it.

3. I have better things to do. Like…watch morning talk shows. Or something.

4. I could design my business cards.

5. See numbers 1 and 2, and repeat twenty times.

Enter voice of reason: Jess, you’re going to class. Go get ready.

Eventually, my funk started wearing off and after changing my outfit and trying to get a reasonable hairstyle situated, I decided I was just going to make the best of my day. I mean, I was already up. And what else was I going to do all morning? That’s what I thought.

Still – I would need some motivation on the drive in.

Enter: music...music can either totally pump me up, or totally bring me down. I needed some Jay-Z to kick off my morning commute. Never mind that Eric Clapton’s Layla came on immediately afterwards – it made me happy just the same. More Jay and some Matisyahu kept my mood up as I thought about going for a run after class. Ooooh, a run!

After a boring class, I was still super-duper pumped at the thoughts of going for a run, and my mood had done a complete 360*. I was in the best mood! I credit it to the drive in and making the best of everything. I was almost floating – not to toot my own horn or anything ๐Ÿ˜‰

I did have some quick grocery shopping to do, for some produce and fruits – and fueled with a nanner.

nanner lovin'. can we just look and laugh at my stray hair on the right there for a second, though? kthanks.

haha I’m so weird. Uhhhh – anyways. Grocery shopping happened quite possibly the fastest I have ever done it. No joke – I was so pumped! And I didn’t want to lose my motvation. I was in and out of there in twenty minutes. (Hey – it only took that long because it’s really hard to fit kale in those dang produce bags.)

Once home, I grabbed a quick snack

half a bagel thin with Rumi’s and dried apricots. These organic dried apricots I picked up from the co-op are handsdown the best I’ve ever had. I think the ones from the bag I’d been eating previously are a joke, or something. They are so…uh…not dry…and have this awesome, vanilla-y flavor. Heaven. Dangerous addiction. I made a side note that this would make a really good sandwich.

Laced up my choos – and off I went!

I’ve been saying a lot lately how I want to get back into horseback riding and/or running. I decided I want to start and see how I like running. It’s been quite a while since I’ve gone for a run, so I set myself goals:

1. Don’t push yourself so it’s not fun. I want to see if I enjoy this – I’m not doing it for weight loss or anything like that. Simply to get a little more physical exercise in my routine, and enjoy the outdoors and feel good.

2. Start out easy. You don’t need to even run a mile.

3. Walk when you want to. It’s your first time in a while. While I’m not unfit – I’m still relatively active – once again, I want to see if I enjoy this, and if I don’t – I’m not going to do it. There’s plenty of forms of exercise that I do find enjoyable.

In addition – I decided I would just do walk-run intervals. So basically, I didn’t exactly work-out much – I went a little over a mile, but again – did walk-run intervals – but I loved being in the fresh air, enjoying myself. It did get a little unpleasant towards the end, but only because of a n00b mistake: it was pretty windy, and my ears got quite cold. I always have had this problem when running, though. I almost wore a hat, but then didn’t. I think if I were in the sun more, it would have been fine…and I almost drove into town so I could run a little loop – but didn’t feel like going out again. Next time!

Once back, I did some stretching (since, you know, that was oh-so-strenuous…hah) and some quick sit-ups, bicycles, and push-ups. I should have reversed that order – I stretched last. haha.

And then feasted! This is where you realize that I’m really totally awesome, or really totally wacked.

Aw, yeah – look at that waffle lovin’. But what did I concoct this time? oh, you know – just a spinach buckwheat waffle with the lovely Mae‘s humnut cheese…

And hardboiled egg whites, red pepper, and roma tomatoes. Remember when I made these waffles? Well – I made enough dry mix for two meals knowing it would come in handy. I was planning I’d have it for dinner tonight – quick and easy! But got way too excited to wait until then when I thought of this during class ๐Ÿ˜‰ I know spinach is pretty unnoticeable in green monsters (not from personal experience – just from hear-say!) and bought a huge thing of spinach last time I went shopping. Wanting to pump up my waffle and use some spinach – I just blended some handfuls with some almond milk, added some fresh basil and a garlic clove, and added that to the mix in addition to some egg beaters!

I won’t lie – my first bite was cautious. It didn’t smell so hot. It smelled quite spinach-y. I was nervous that this ended up being a drastic fail. Um, no, sir, not at all! No taste of psinach whatsoever. Just deliciousness! I love buckwheat. Although – I do hate how it looks, hah. Wouldn’t these be such a pretty green if it was a spelt flour or WW flour base?! Oh, well. Beggars can’t be choosers. Or something.

Additionally – loved the humnut cheese. I was just going to do hummus and melt some mozzarella – but then I’d realized I’d never tried the humnut cheese, and this would be the perfect humnut cheese vessel! Although – I still don’t have any tahini, so I went without. Ah, well.

So – have I completely weirded you out yet, or not? Heh – sorry guys ๐Ÿ™‚ Love me?

So – this is it from me for today! I’m craving a tempeh-almond butter-jam sammie for dinner – that one from Sunday was delish! So I may do that. And if I don’t…you won’t be missing anything exciting, either way. But it’s way easier for me to not have to worry about blogging Tuesday nights! I hope you all have a beautiful rest of the day, and a great night!!

What’s your favorite music to listen to when you need to get motivated, or “out of a funk”? Or are there other things you do to motivate you?

If you’re a runner – how did you get into it?


15 Comments

Filed under breakfast, cooking, dinner, foodblog, health, health food, healthy living, lunch, oatmeal, recipe

andifeelfine

…anybody? …anybody?

I hope everyone else’s day has been as splendid as mine. I just can’t get over this beautiful weather! I have been in a nonstop amazing mood since this morning.

I thought I woke up wicked late – it was so light out and I had that groggy “slept-in” feeling – but it was really only 6:30! I caught up on some blogs before strolling out to the kitchen and makin’ up a repeat of the other day. Sorry!

carrot-cake oats

Because I am having an affair with carrot-cake oats, and they will never grow old.

In the mix was oat bran, rolled barley flakes, and wheat bran, brewed coffee & almondmilk, goji berries, 3/4 carrot – grated, cinnamon, nutmeg, ground clove, ginger, vanilla, and a couple slices of ripe nanner.

On the top was chia-acai icing, dates, crystallized ginger, ground flax, Justin’s Maple Almond Butter, drizzle coconut butter, strawberry-pom jam, and the rest of the carrot, sauteed with raisins, maple syrup, and coconut.

I almost threw in the kitchen sink, but couldn’t quite get it loose. Oh well, maybe next time ๐Ÿ˜‰ I’ve been thinking it’s rather comical that I load up my breakfasts so much that you can’t even see the oatbran and whatever other grain I’m using! Haha…it’s under there. Somewhere ๐Ÿ™‚

I flipped through some magazines while enjoying this beaut, and then cleaned up, spiffed myself up, did a mini photo shoot because I was really bubbly and haven’t held my baby in a while

and thenย set sail for tax-free shopping. Woo-hoo! I decided I’d take you guys with me today, too! You’ll probably be sick of my face by the end of this post. I apologize. But I’d been thinking about how it probably seems like I’m not even a real person behind this computer because I never show my face. This is primarily because it’s tricky to take a picture of yourself when you’re using a camera with a fixed, manual focus lens. And you’re too lazy to switch it, like moi. ย But I love seeing all of your beautiful faces, so hopefully you don’t think I’m a robot anymore ๐Ÿ™‚

Wild Mtn. Blueberry & Vanilla latte. Copco spokesperson.

You’ll probably be sick of my bony, dry, old lady hands by the end of this, too. Oh well. I tend to wait until it’s too late to fix those sorts of things.

AB&J muffin with Justin's Maple AB

Yeah, I’ve still got these muffins and scones, haha. I freeze them right away, and tend to forget. That and I have a large variety of carbs to choose from daily, and unfortuately, out of sight out of mind tends to have a strong affect on me. Sometimes it’s good – sometime’s it’s depressing. Like when there’s a freezerful of these and these.

I stopped at the discount foods store first, and there may or may not be any more boxes of Sugar Cookie tea left in the state of Vermont. I may or may not know who should be held accountable for this. Jus’ sayinnn.’

When I’d reached my finalย desired location, it was time for a refuel before a shopping spree.

I'm supposed to look sad because of the ugly nanner... I'm not sure I was successful.

The rest of my nanner from breakfast, and the plaza in the background. Okay, you only see Dicks. Pretend that’s BB&B and Hannaford.

I was strangely conservative in BB&B, but I am not complaining. I think it’s just because I wanted everything – so I just stuck to what I went there with the intentions of getting – which you’ll see soon enough! They do have so many cool gadgets, and I really wanted to get a bunch of kitchen organizational stuff, but refrained. It’s a lot more expensive there, I could probs go to wally world or something.

Afterwards, I hit up Hannafords for a couple goodies and ran into some old friends. This was weird because I never run into people and I thought they were out west somewhere. So it was a pleasant surprise!

As a side note, I love shopping when you’re in a really good mood – I like being the pleasant customer. Is that weird? I know when I wait on people at work, I love when a happy cheery person comes in. I’m not annoyingly happy, I’m just polite. I think. I hope. You all must think I’ve been sneaking some sort of happy pills lately. aha. Yeah – it’s called sun and spring air!

Afterwards, I hit up the co-op! Again, I was surprisingly well-behaved. I think I have this “go big or go home” slogan. I knew what I went in for, so I tried to stay just to those aisles, haha. I just wanted to get some more almondmilk, and see what they had already packaged for dried fruits and nuts. I was successful ๐Ÿ™‚

But all that shopping made me work up an appetite!

Sick of me yet? That's okay - this is the last one ๐Ÿ™‚

And all I wanted was a big, crispy, juicy, apple! I still had to stop and clean the office on my way home, though, and wasn’t sure it’d tide me but wanted it anyways. For some reason, apples make me really full at first, and then really hungry. I guess it makes sense in a weird way – the fiber making you feel full initially, but then your body realizes it wasn’t that much food? maybe? Anyways, after my cleaning expedition decided it was time for another snack. I planned to stop some places to take some funky photos on the way home, too. Can’t do that hungry, you know ๐Ÿ™‚

Other than the mis-spelling of "sesame," can you really argue with those ingredients?

Okay, maybe you’ll argue with the butter – but hey, at least it’s a real food. No complaints over hurr!

Yum. They’re really dense, so I had a little less than half, since I was going to be home in an hour or so for lunch anyways. But I had forgotten how good these are! I can’t wait for one of you luckies to win some – I hope you find them as good as I do! I may be doing another giveaway with them soon, too.

I stopped some fun places on the way home to snap some photos, but haven’t finished sorting through them all yet. Sneak peek? Oh, okay.

After unpacking everything and gettin’ in my cozy pants, all I wanted for lunch was a fried egg sandwich on a chewy english muffin with hummus. Weird lunchtime craving for me, but I followed it.

I must have really wanted some sodium and carbs, because I wasn’t even into the carrots…and I’m always into raw, crunchy, yummy carrots! So, fried egg and english muffin it was. With some hummus, spinach, parmesan, sundried tomatoes, half a dill pickle, and some dijonnaise. Hit. The. Spot. I’m usually all about fresh veggies and letting them sing with minimal bread-age, but I just loved crunching into the english muffin and the crispy & salty fried egg, complimented by the oozy cheese and creamy hummus. Yum!

But of course dessert was in order, too.

You’ll be seeing this often. Puffins, granola, honey apple buttah, almond milk, and the star of this one was some sliced dried turkish fig! The figs keep getting forgotten about in the back of my fridge. A shame, because I love figs as much as I love dates – and you all know how much I love dates ๐Ÿ™‚

overstock (dot com, that is!)

Apparently, my mom had the same thoughts I did while she was out. I may or may not have had one or two throughout the course of the day.

is that...is that...a FOOD PROCESSOR?!

oh, yes. It’s actually a Ninja processor. Apparently, it’s been seen on TV, which makes me unsure it’ll last all too long, but hey. It fits the bill for what I need. And it’s a blender, too! The blender I had was pretty awful, so I killed two birds with one stone on this one. Which is a shame because I like birds.

But what in the hay am I makin'?

Ohh, just a lil’ comethin’ somethin’ that required chickpea flour. I had no chickpea flour. I did have chickpeas. I made a quasi-flour. I do what I do.

The girl's gone mad!

oh yeah, baby! Wafflin’ it up. Should we take bets on how long it is until I use both of these appliances next, now that I’ve made my longed for fawaffle? Hopefully not just a phase.

I pretty much ย just threw everything even vaguely reminiscent of falafel into this and prayed to the waffle gods. Surprisingly, it worked! I thought for sure it’d be a relative fail. Unfortunately, however, I wasn’t really in the mood for falafel – but of course, I had it in my mind, had chickpeas I needed to use, and have been eyeballing fawaffle for months. So, I still had it. I can’t wait to make it when I’m craving falafel! haha.

Although that pickle may have killed my taste buds.

Dessert of puffins, scone, currants, maple AB and granola. Although, in the time it’s taken me to write this post, I’ve already consumed a kiwi-yogurt-and granola parfait. It’s been a couple hours, what can I say?

What is everyone’s favorite kitchen gadget?

and I’ll be picking (randomizing?) a giveaway winner tomorrow – so make sure you’ve taken advantage of the chance to enter up to three times! I’ll probably do it around the time of my usual posting – so early evening-ish ๐Ÿ™‚

Hope everyone has a great night!

10 Comments

Filed under almond butter, almond milk, apple, banana, beans, breakfast, carrot cake, chia seeds, cooking, dinner, falafel, foodblog, greek yogurt, health, health food, healthy cooking, healthy eating, healthy living, hummus, lunch, nikon d90, nut butter, oatmeal, oats, photography, recipe, vegetarian, vermont, weather, whole grains

Almond Butter & Jam Bran Muffins

The other recipe in the running from my late-night recipe hunting? Peanut butter muffins. Except, using almond butter, of course! I still had a tiny bit left of the all-natural, unsalted kind that I wanted to use up. And after making those almond-butter cookies, I can’t get enough of almond-butter or peanut-butter baked goods! I was skeptical of ย my hunt, because as usual, I wanted it to be a nutritious good that could pass as a breakfast or a fulfilling snack. Cause I get a kick out of that. And hey, maybe I could find a recipe for a pb&j bran muffin? Not quite. But hey, since when don’t I adapt a recipe? I found one for whole-wheat peanut butter muffins, and decided to tweak it a bit.ย Here’s what I came up with! They are so. dang. addictive. Please – do no make mini-muffins. You will be popping them in your mouth every time you go near the kitchen. (I learned that lesson early-on in my baking career ๐Ÿ™‚ )

Once again, I’m going to type the recipe exactly as I made it – and make notes at the end.

Ingredients:

1/4 c. Spelt Flour

-3/4 c. Whole Wheat Flour

-3/4 c. Wheat Bran

-2 Tbs. milled golden flax

-1 Tbs. Baking Powder

-1/2 tsp. salt

-1/2 tsp. cinnamon

-1/3 c. sugar/evaporated cane juice/stevia

-1 1/4 c. almondmilk

-1/3 c. all-natural, unsalted, unsweetened almond butter

-1 Tbs. maple syrup/honey/agave

-1 egg white

-1 Tbs. butter or buttery spread, melted

-1 Tbs. pumpkin puree/applesauce

-1 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract

-jam, preserves, or jelly of choice

-additional almond butter or peanut butter and almond milk, for glaze

Destructions:

1. Preheat oven to 400*.

2. Combine all dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl, including sugar.

3. In a separate, smaller mixing bowl, combine wet ingredients except for jam/jelly. It may take a bit to get the almond butter incorporated – just do the best you can. It will work out once you combine wet and dry.

4.…which you should do now.

5. Be careful not to overmix – stir just until combined. Spray 12 muffin cups well with non-stick spray (make sure you get them good!) and fill each cup half-way with the batter.

6. Line up your soldiers:

And place a dollop in the center top of the batter.

6. Top with the remaining batter – I actually got a perfect twelve medium sized muffins.

7. Bake for twenty minutes. Once baked, remove from muffin tin and allow to cool. Or just eat half of them warm – that’s a more logical thing to do, really.

Obviously, I’d already helped myself.

Serving Suggestion: Drizzle with a mixture of almond milk and/or greek yogurt and almond butter and additionalย jam or preserves.

What are my thoughts, and what would I do differently?

-Once again, I was pleasantly surprised with the outcome based on all of my changes! I tend to get nervous when baking without any white/all-purpose flour just because I’m afraid they’ll come out dense and ugly, even if they taste fine. These came out quite light, and the peanut butter and bran flavor was quite pleasing. And they smelled like heaven while baking. Yes, heaven. (p.s. good batter here, ladies. and I’m not a batter fan! hey – just had to check the spice prportions!)

They do, however, have a mild-moderately strong bran flavor (which I love) but if you’re on the fence about bran, either cut back on the whet bran and use some oat bran, or cut back on the wheat bran and use more whole wheat flour.

-Because of the wheat bran and all-natural almond butter, they are also not super sweet – you could easily get away with using your normal, slightly sweetened peanut or almond butter. Made like this, they’re fine for me, but again, I don’t like my baked goods super sweet. That and they’re fine with a dollop of additional jam.

-I used maple syrup, but I think honey would be really good too – will use that next time I think ๐Ÿ™‚ Peanut butter, banana, and honey muffins, anyone? Oh, snap.

-Don’t be afraid to use a good amount of jam in the center – I just used a tiny bit, I was nervous it’d get all oozy and messy. I’ll use more next time, though, as this wasn’t an issue.

-One last thing? You could easily do without the spelt flour. After making the scones, I just had a tiny bit left and decided to use it up ๐Ÿ™‚

Based on These nutrition facts:

-110 calories, 6g total fat, 2.5mg cholesterol, 30mg sodium, 115 mg potassium, 12.5g carbohydrates, 3.5g fiber, 4g protein (based without jam, depends on your ingredients and adjustments, too)

next time I think I’d add a nut-topping, maybe some chia seeds, more flax, or…?

just to amp it up a bit. Or try the whole peanut butter-banana-honey idea of course ๐Ÿ™‚

Sooo. I’m off for my lunch date! See you guys tonight ๐Ÿ™‚

15 Comments

Filed under breakfast, cooking, foodblog, health, health food, healthy living, recipe