To Blend / Blood Orange Smoothies

 
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     Good morning! I've recently realized a food philosophy I've been subconsciously following for awhile, and that is focusing on one fruit and one veggie that I really love each season. For fall it's sweet potatoes and figs, for summer it was strawberries and spinach (which is pretty seasonless, but it pairs best with summer produce in my opinion), and spring makes me crave asparagus and honeydew melon! I started realizing this pattern of focusing on basically two produce items when I was deciding what I wanted for smoothies (typically my daily lunch). I landed on kale and citrus, and have been sticking to that for the past couple of months! Kale is so nutrient dense, citrus is highly beneficial this season (looking at you flu), and both keep me feeling great and energized!

     Now, today's smoothie recipe doesn't have kale, because I'm a visual person and really wanted to see how these gorgeous blood oranges blended up. :)  Feel free to add a handful of kale though, as it couldn't hurt! Get the full recipe below!

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Ingredients:

- 1 blood orange peeled and segmented (feel free to use any citrus you like!)

- 1 tsp. of turmeric or a golden turmeric blend (I've been using this one from Moondeli and love it)

- 1 cup of almond milk

- 1 sliced + frozen banana

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Directions:

1. Gather your ingredients and add them to a blender, almond milk first.

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2. Blend on high until smooth and frothy.

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3. Serve in your tallest glass and enjoy (preferably with a little stinker who enjoys vying for the first sip)!

To Make / Grilled Cheese

 
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     Good morning! Last week, I was craving an adultified grilled cheese. Enter: pears + brie! After deciding I needed a grilled cheese in my life, I was searching for seasonal fruits that aren't citrus (I'm currently chipping away at a giant bag of blood oranges - smoothie recipe coming next week!), and realized pears are in season. Score! They're the apple of winter, and go so well with cheese and a little honey. A sweet and creamy perfection! Get the recipe below!

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Ingredients:

- a few slices of brie

- a few slices of fresh pear

- 2 slices of bread of choice (I used sourdough!)

- a drizzle of honey

- mayo

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Directions:

1. Heat a greased skillet on medium, then spread mayo on your bread on the sides that will be grilled. Place your first piece of bread in the skillet, mayo side down, and top with your cheese and pears. Drizzle with honey, and place second piece of bread on top. 

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2. Cover with your skillet lid (this will contain the steam and help the cheese melt faster) and let grill until the cheese is melted. Then flip and let grill for 1-2 minutes, until bread is golden brown. 

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3. Slice and serve with your favorite chips/pretzels!

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Enjoy! 

Thanks for reading, and have a fun Wednesday! I'll be back next week with that yummy citrus smoothie!

To Make / Spicy Cauliflower Soup

 
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     Hi there! I changed up the site yesterday to reflect the new direction I've taken towards posting mostly about food. I'm loving the new site and hope you do too! The new design is much more geared towards the content I've got lined up for this awesome new year, so get excited for some new posts! My first one for 2018 is a delicious and spicy soup from my new favorite cookbook by Half Baked Harvest (thanks mom + dad!!). I'm dedicating a whole post to the book next week, because I can't not share it's contents, but for now I'd like to present you with my adaptation on Tieghan's curried cauliflower soup! I switched out the curry for the Indonesian sambal oelek, as I've never been the biggest fan of curry. Also, I omitted the coconut milk in favor of greek yogurt, as that's what I had on hand! Now, this recipe is only in her book (you can purchase your own copy here), but she has a similar recipe on her blog with squash instead of cauliflower, so I'd highly recommend giving that one a try! In the meantime, see my warming cauliflower soup below: 

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Ingredients:

- 1 head of cauliflower, broken into florets

- 6 cloves of garlic

- 4 tbs. of olive oil

- 1/2 of an onion, diced

- 2 tbs. of sambal oelek

- 1 tsp. of smoked paprika

- sprinkle of cinnamon

- 1 cup of greek yogurt

- 3-4 cups of broth, any kind will work

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Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 425. Roast cauliflower and garlic on a baking sheet for 25 minutes. While the cauliflower is roasting, heat your olive oil in a large dutch oven or pot. When it shimmers, add onion and cook until fragrant, about 8 minutes. Then, add your spices and sambal oelek, and saute for another minute. Add 1 cup of broth, and stir in the greek yogurt, then let simmer until cauliflower is done. 

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2. Once cauliflower is roasted, take your pot off the heat, and let cool slightly. Pour into a blender or food processor, and then add your cauliflower and garlic. Blend until smooth. 

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3. Return soup to pot and add 2 more cups of broth and stir. Simmer over medium heat until soup is heated through, then ladle into bowls and serve with warm naan or buns. Enjoy!

     Thanks for reading, and have a fun weekend! I'll be back next week to talk the Half Baked Harvest cookbook, and to share a golden milk tonic that's been helping alleviate all of the sinus yuck we've been having this winter! 

To Bake / Cranberry Butter Dutch Baby

 
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     Good morning! Cranberry season is still in full force around my house. I had such an excess from making cranberry sauce for Thanksgiving, and it's been a lot easier than I thought to find uses for the leftover sauce, but also for the raw cranberries! I've been adding the fresh cranberries to my daily lunch smoothie, and stirring in the leftover sauce with some greek yogurt to add to my grain or lentil bowls. Today though, I've added my beloved cranberry sauce to butter for this cinnamon dutch baby pancake (recipe adapted from Half Baked Harvest)! It's the perfect amount of sweet for breakfast or brunch, and serves 3-6 people (depending on how many slices you eat :)). Get the recipe below!

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For the Dutch Baby:

- 4 eggs

- 2/3 cup of milk

- 2/3 cup of AP flour

- 2 tsp. of vanilla

- a good shake of cinnamon

- another good shake of nutmeg

- 1/2 tsp. of salt

- 4 tbs. of butter

- syrup for serving!

For the Cranberry Butter:

- 1/2 cup of cranberry sauce 

- 4 tbs. of butter at room temp.

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Directions:

1. Preheat the oven to 450, place 2 tbs. of butter in your cast-iron skillet, and put in the oven to warm. While that's heating, blend your flour, milk, eggs, vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt, and 2 tbs. of butter in a blender. Make sure there are no lumps!

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2. Pour batter into your hot skillet, and place back in the oven. Cook for 20-25 minutes, and don't open the oven or your pancake will deflate! 

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3. While the pancake is baking, mix together your soft butter and cranberry sauce. When the dutch baby is done, spoon on cranberry butter and let melt.

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4. Drizzle with A LOT of syrup. 

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5. Serve warm and enjoy!

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     I, as usual, enjoyed mine with a cup of black coffee (the perfect pairing with a breakfast so sweet!). The pancake was the fluffy, sweet, and buttery confection I was looking for, and I hope you all enjoy it!

    Thanks for reading, and have a fun Tuesday! I'll be back later this week to share about my new gifting philosophy for Bailey this year. See you then!

To Make / GF Pumpkin Tahini Cookies

 
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     Hi there! October means all things pumpkin, and I have a yummy pumpkin tahini cookie recipe for you all today! They're on the slightly healthier side than other cookies, being gluten free and containing nutrient filled tahini. Get the recipe below (adapted from A Beautiful Mess)!

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Ingredients:

- 1/2 cup pumpkin puree
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1 egg
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 heaping tablespoons tahini
- 1 1/4 cups gluten-free all-purpose flour
- 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon (aluminum-free) baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 bag semi-sweet chocolate chips
- 1/4 cup of softened butter

Directions:

1. Mix together the butter, pumpkin, and sugars. Then add in the egg, vanilla, and tahini.

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2. Next add in the flour, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon. Once dough has formed, add in chocolate chips. Scoop out into cookie dough balls, and refrigerate for 30 minutes.  

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3. Either store in fridge until ready to bake, or preheat your oven to 350, and bake for 12 minutes. Serve warm and enjoy!

To Make / Salted Honey Apple Gouda Toast

 
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      Good morning! I have a delicious recipe for you all today, and it's perfect for the season: apple gouda toast (adapted from Half Baked Harvest, I just can't get enough of her recipes)! Topped with sea salt, honey, and rosemary, these toasts hit all of the flavors and are amazing for an easy fall lunch. Get the recipe below! 

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Ingredients:

- 2 slices of your choice of bread (I used my favorite sprouted version from Food For Life!)

- 2 pats of butter

- 2 slices of gouda

- half an apple, cut into slices

- raw honey

- sea salt

- rosemary

Directions:

1. Place a pat of butter on each of your bread slices, then layer on the cheese and apples.

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2. Set your oven to the broiler, and place your toasts on a baking sheet. Broil for 1-2 minutes, until the cheese is melted.

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3. Drizzle your honey on the toasts, then sprinkle your salt and rosemary on top. Eat as is, or mush the two toasts together for a tasty sandwich! Enjoy!

To Make / Homemade Tomato Soup

 
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      Hi there! A couple of weeks ago, my neighbor brought over some surplus tomatoes, and I immediately wanted to make tomato soup. I adapted Half Baked Harvest's recipe, and am sharing it with you all today! Get the how-to below!

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Ingredients:

- 3 ripe tomatoes

- half an onion

- 1 cup of milk

- 3 tbs. of pesto

- 3 tbs. of olive oil

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Directions:

1. Preheat your oven to 425, and roast your tomatoes and onion drizzled in your olive oil for 20-30 minutes.

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2. Once roasted, place your tomatoes and onion in a blender and add your milk. Blend until smooth.

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3. Pour your blended soup into a large pot, and heat over medium high until bubbling slightly, then add in your pesto, and heat until warm.

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4. Whip up a grilled cheese, and serve with your soup. Enjoy!

For Sweet Potatoes / A Skillet

 

     Hi there! My love of sweet potatoes is still going strong, so I wanted to share a great brunch/breakfast option today! The savoriness of sweet potatoes is welcome at any time of day, for me. Especially if you throw an egg on it, along with crumbled goat cheese. Check out the recipe below!

Ingredients:

- half a sweet potato

- 2 cloves of garlic

- 2 tbs. of olive oil

- 1 tsp. of smoked paprika

- 1 tsp. of cumin

- 1 egg

- 1/2 cup of crumbled goat cheese

Directions:

1. Cube your sweet potato, and mince your garlic (I use a garlic press, highly recommended!).

2. Saute your garlic in olive oil for 1 minute, until fragrant. Then, add in your sweet potatoes and spices. Cook covered for about 15 minutes over medium high heat, or until sweet potatoes soften.

3. Crack an egg in the middle of the skillet and let fry, covered, until top of yolk has whitened (about 5 minutes). Remove from burner and top with goat cheese. Enjoy!

To Make a Smoothie / Kale-Apple

 

       Hi there! There's not much more refreshing than a crisp smoothie. Smoothies are one of the best ways to get the vitamins and nutrients you need from veggies and fruits, and are probably the best choice for those who don't really like vegetables. Just throw some kale in your smoothie and it will still taste like fruit! I drink them regularly, and am about to introduce them into Bailey's regular diet. Check out one of my current favorite recipes below!

Ingredients:

- a handful of kale

- half and apple, sliced

- a peeled banana, sliced

- 1 cup of almond milk

- 1 tbs. chia/flax seed blend

Directions:

- Place all ingredients in a blender, and blend until smooth.

2. Pour into a tall glass, and enjoy!

To Make Soup / Cauliflower

 

      Good morning! I made the tastiest soup a couple of weeks ago, and I have the recipe for you today. It's a roasted cauliflower soup with smoked paprika and cumin, adapted from this recipe at Joy the Baker. I ate all of it within two days, it was so good! Get the recipe below.

Ingredients:

- 1 head of cauliflower

- 1 clove of garlic

- half an onion, diced

- 1 tsp. of cumin

- 1 tsp. of smoked paprika

- 2 tbs. of olive oil

- 2 cups of chicken bone broth (or any kind of broth to make stock!)

- 3 tbs. of butter

- 1/4 cup of greek yogurt

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 375, and season your cauliflower with cumin + smoked paprika and drizzle on olive oil. Place on a baking sheet, and roast for 25 minutes.

2. Warm more olive oil in a soup pot and cook onions for about 5 minutes, then add in your garlic, roasted cauliflower florets, and broth. Simmer over medium heat for about 15 minutes, then slowly puree in a blender in batches until smooth. If you try to do it all at once, the heat from the soup will become too pressurized with the blender lid on and will push the lid out when you turn it on, so be sure to do it in batches.

3. Return the soup to the pan, and stir in greek yogurt. Pour into bowls and enjoy!

To Make a Quesadilla

 

     Good morning! A couple of weeks ago, I stumbled upon this recipe from A Beautiful Mess, and had to give it a try. I'm a big fan of sweet potatoes, and have tried them in Mexican dished before, like enchiladas, so I knew I'd love the flavor. I've since made these quesadillas multiple times and still am loving it. I think next time I'll throw in some black beans and corn salsa for an extra kick, but for now try out the recipe below!

Ingredients:

- 1 sweet potato, cubed

- 1 tbs. diced red onion

- 1 cup of spinach

- 1 clove of garlic, minced

- 1/2 tbs. of cumin

- 1 tbs. of olive oil

- tortillas

- shredded cheese

- any toppings you like! Sour cream, avocado, + cilantro are always good options.

Directions:

1. Preheat your oven to 425, and roast your cumin-topped sweet potatoes and onions for 30 minutes. Once those are roasted, saute your spinach and garlic in a small pan for about 5 minutes, and if you're using a quesadilla maker, preheat it. If not, check out Emma's technique for making quesadillas at the link above!

2. Smash your cooked sweet potatoes onto one of the tortilla shells. Add the onions, spinach, and shredded cheese. Cook in the quesadilla maker for a little under 10 minutes, or until its browned on top.

3. Once quesadilla is finished, slice, top, and serve. Enjoy!

Recipe adapted from A Beautiful Mess.

To Make a Limeade

 

      Good morning! Today, I'm sharing a recipe for homemade cherry simple syrup that I've been using to make cherry limeades. Previously, I've never been a fan of cherries, but they were recently in season, and I figured if I wanted to change that, now would be the time. They had some great ones at the market, and I ended up loving the syrup in the liemades. It was perfectly sweet and tart. Get the recipe below!

Cherry Simple Syrup: Yields a small jar full

Ingredients:

- half a bag of cherries

- 1 cup of sugar

- 1 cup of water

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Directions:

Step one - Chop and pit all of your cherries, it's a little time consuming, but worth it!

Step two - Boil your cherries with your water and sugar for about 20 minutes. Strain into jar and store in the fridge.

For the Limeade:

- Combine your syrup with sparkling water and lime juice in a glass and stir. Add some ice and enjoy!

To See What's in Season

 

        Hey there! It's Earth Day today, and I realized it's the perfect opportunity to talk about what's in season so far this spring! We live down the street from our city's farmers market, and I try to take Bailey every weekend. Columbia has a pretty big farmers community, and it makes sense considering most of the land surrounding the city is wide open and fairly flat. It also helps that the closest city is 30 minutes away. I like living in a place that isn't completely taken over by suburbs. That being said, the emptiness makes for beautiful farms, nurseries, and wineries! It's really helped me to eat local and fresh foods. So let's get on with what's in season! 

     Spinach is my number one food to buy at the market. There's always an abundance of the leafy veggie, and I use it in many ways. Smoothies, on a sandwich, in pasta, with eggs. The possibilities are pretty endless, and it's essential for a clean diet. It's so rich in vitamins and nutrients that I try to incorporate it in as many places as possible.

     Asparagus is typically one that I only buy once, and I didn't even buy this bunch, Brett's mom picked some up and had leftovers! I usually only use it as a side for dinners, but the other day I used it in a salad by combining spinach, asparagus, strawberries, and lemon juice. Let's just say it definitely made me like salads a bit more!

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       Strawberries are another one that we buy quite a bit. Bailey loves to snack on them (she calls them "rawberries") and I love them for a dessert, in a smoothie, and just to have as a snack with Bailey! Like I said above, I put them in a salad, and it made the salad 10x better.

     Mint is an awesome seasonal herb I've been trying out lately! I've been putting it in smoothies and cocktails, and it's so refreshing. It's excellent with strawberries, and mango too! Mint is very strong though, so you only need about one sprig of leaves for whatever you are making. So far, no regrets though! Have a great Friday!

To Make a Kale & Shrimp Skillet

 
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     In keeping with the seasonal feel of this month's recipes, I made an effort to search out what is most yummy this time of year. Kale was at the top of my list. It can be put in so many dishes, and the taste is so versatile, I knew I wouldn't have a problem working it in. I haven't always loved the taste, but once I tried fresh kale in a salad I was sold. I just didn't care for the kale chips, it was mostly a texture thing. Anyways, this spicy Shrimp and Kale skillet seemed perfect for a quick and hearty meal that is always needed during the work week. It makes excellent leftovers too. Those sweet potatoes though, I don't think they could be any more photogenic. I added our signature seasoning to them while they were cooking and it didn't disappoint. Sriracha is a nice addition to most dishes, and it went perfectly with the shrimp, like a spicy cocktail sauce. I will probably just be dipping the shrimp in some for lunch tomorrow. Go ahead and give the recipe a try below!

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Ingredients:

- 1 sweet potato

- 1 pound of raw shrimp

- a handful of leafy kale

- 1 tbs. olive oil

- 1 tsp. cumin

- 1 tsp. corriander

- 1 tsp. oregano

- 1 tbs. parsley

- 1/2 tbs. rosemary

- 1 1/2 tbs. Sriracha

Directions:

Step one: Heat a swirl of olive oil in a medium size skillet over medium high heat and add sweet potatoes. Season and cook for 15 minutes.

Step two: Add Kale and cook for another 5 minutes. Remove from pan and set aside.

Step three: Cook shrimp in pan until pink on both sides, combine with sweet potatoes and kale. Enjoy!