My brain is sore from too much grad school

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How is it almost November? Can someone explain this madness to me? I mean, first of all it’s still kind of hot (summer, you can bugger off now… you have officially overstayed your welcome) but also, where did September and October go?! I want them back please.

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And I know the term compost cookies is probably unappealing, but it’s always made me laugh. I suppose you could call these ‘pantry cookies’ but isn’t compost more fun?? Besides… these are hippie enough that the stuff going into them is stuff that usually lurks in the fridge or fruit basket, and therefore is more like… compost! Obviously.

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These cookies get a little crisp on the outside while staying cakey and delicious on the inside. If you want a chewy pumpkin cookie, these aren’t it… but they ARE quite tasty. They store well in the fridge and make for a fast breakfast or a good snack. AND they’re full of healthy fats and good fiber, plus antioxidants. No refined sugar, can be gluten free… the options are endless. Don’t like walnuts? Use something else. Hate sunbutter? Use almond or peanut— These are extremely forgiving cookies.

They’re also super fast to whip together, no muss no fuss. I made them on a lunch break between classes because I desperately needed a brain break — I can only cram facts and knowledge into my brain in concentrated intervals for so long before I start glazing over. Case in point:

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Sometimes, you have to take a break from taking lecture notes for your own sanity.

Making cookies like this reminds me of undergrad when I would run home and make lunch and a batch of cookies in the hour I had between class and work. If that isn’t time management, I don’t know what is.

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Also, I really need to study right now but I am sleepy and brainsore (that’s a thing) and I just want to cuddle on the couch with my novel and a cookie and a nap. But.. le sigh. That is currently impossible because stats and the billion other things I have to do are calling my name and I really should get on that. But at least I shared cookies, so that if your Sunday is less nuts than mine, you can make something delicious out of your fridge compost. Happy almost November! Enjoy your pumpkin goodness.

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Pumpkin Banana Compost Cookies

Vegan, low FODMAP and IBS friendly, gluten free option (just switch the spelt flour for a gf flour of your choice), refined sugar free. And delicious! A Wait are those Cookies original. Yield: 12 cookies.

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  • heaping 1/2 c pumpkin puree
  • 1 ripe banana, mashed
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3 tbsp maple syrup
  • 1 tbsp sunbutter (mine is unsalted)*
  • 1 tbsp almond butter (mine is unsalted)*
  • 1 tbsp unsweetened hemp milk
  • 2 c rolled oats (gf if desired)
  • 3 tbsp spelt flour
  • 1/4 tsp fine sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp ground ginger
  • ~1/4 c chopped raw walnuts and dark chocolate

*alternatively, you can use 2 tbsp of the same nut butter; I just wanted a little variety

Preheat the oven to 350, and line a baking sheet with parchment paper (or 2, if your oven is stupid tiny like mine and normal cookie sheets don’t fit. Rude. Bring on the quarter sheet pans).

This is pretty much as easy as it gets. Bust out a bowl. Mash up the banana with a fork, then stir in pumpkin puree, vanilla extract, maple, sunbutter, almond butter, and hemp milk. In the same bowl, because we’re making cookies on our lunch break between classes today and this needs to be fast, toss in oats, spelt flour, salt, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, and ginger. Stir to combine. Stir in chopped walnuts and chocolate. Make sure the whole thing is nicely mixed, then drop lazy spoonfuls onto your prepared cookie sheet (all 12 should fit onto a standard cookie sheet no problem; these don’t spread). Bake for 15-16 minutes, until the top is lightly browned and mostly firm to the touch. Let cool on the pan for a minute before moving, then move to a rack to cool completely. Store leftovers in a plastic container in the fridge (glass will make them go soft).

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Life is good when your taco runneth over

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FAJITASSSSS!!!!

I know, I know. They’re buried under a mountain of guac. Sorry not sorry, you gotta do what you gotta do…

Please excuse the excessive letters and capitals. I’m not shouting, promise. I’m just reeeeeally excited that I made something resembling a fajita in my own oven. Because I a) love fajitas, if you couldn’t tell and b) thought they might be too difficult or some other lazy excuse. But, I proved myself wrong.

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And in return, I got tacos. Mmmmm. With homemade guac falling out all over the place because I always break rule number one and overstuff my fajita or taco tortillas. Whatever, when your taco runneth over, life is good. I seem to have this problem with quesadillas too, their innards are always falling all over the place because I insist on shoving half the vegetable drawer into them, along with obligatory beans. You think I’m exaggerating… but actually not. I have witnesses, they can vouch for me.

Also yes. I do put chia seeds on my fajita-tacos. Because, crunchy.

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Yesterday was another day of food prep, though I definitely didn’t cook as much as last week. Split pea soup (with bacon. natch) is chillin in the fridge for dinner tonight (side note, the slow cooker is fab for these kinds of recipes), and I also did some chickpea-cashew butter- oat bars for dessert, which are pretty fab, and coming to the blog soonish, whenever I can find time and can write some chuckle-inducing thing to accompany them…

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More of this trashed-up dessert coming soon {watch this space for further developments…}.. I was channeling some Jackson Pollack ice cream styling in the above photo. Try it sometime, playing with your food is fab.

This is about as easy as it gets. Chop chop chop toss toss pour spread clank (that was putting them in the oven, ha) tick tick tick ding! boom done. Just like that, though you’ll have to provide your own sound effects…
Though I made these for a food prep day, they would actually be easy for a weeknight meal. The prep work doesn’t take long at all, especially if the chicken is already defrosted, and they finish cooking in about a half an hour, giving you plenty of time to mash up homemade guac.

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Sheet Pan Chicken Fajitas

Gluten free with corn tortillas (which is what I use). Serve with homemade guac (so-called ‘recipe’ below) for a good dose of healthy fats! Recipe serves 3 generously, with leftovers for one. Only slightly adapted from Whole Foods, here.

  • 1 pound of chicken breasts, cut into 1/2″ strips
  • 3 bell peppers, sliced into strips (I used red/orange/yellow)
  • 1 onion, sliced
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 2 tbsp avocado oil
  • 1 tbsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp fine sea salt
  • corn tortillas, for serving

Preheat the oven to 400, and procure a large rimmed sheet pan.

In a large bowl, toss together chicken, peppers, onion, garlic, avocado oil, chili powder, and sea salt, making sure the oil and spices are decently distributed. Spread all this out onto the sheet pan, and bake for 25 – 30 minutes, until the chicken is cooked through and the vegetables are tender. I like to toast my tortillas over the gas burners on the stove, but you can also wrap them in foil, and heat them in the oven during the last five minutes of cooking.

Serve with tortillas, guac, and anything else your taco-loving heart desires.

Homemade Guacamole

I mildly feel like I’m insulting your intelligence by calling this a recipe, so let’s just lay out the basics:

  • 3 large avocados
  • juice of two limes
  • garlic powder to taste
  • sea salt to taste
  • a handful of cherry tomatoes, chopped

No one in my fam is a big fan of raw onions, but I do like them occasionally in guac — let red onions marinate in the lime juice prior to making the guac, which takes away a bit of their bite. I didn’t use them here, but go ahead if that’s your thing!

In a bowl, mash together avocados and lime juice. I like to leave my guac chunky, but you do you. Stir in garlic powder and sea salt to taste, followed by the tomatoes. Store in a covered container in the fridge to prevent browning, and eat on EVERYTHING. This amount serves 3, plus leftovers for one (or at least that’s what happened in my family…).

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Like I really needed an excuse for more nut butter

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So. Pancakes!

It’s been awhile since there have been any pancakes on this blog, which is a mild travesty considering they’re one my fave things. Okay okay, breakfast and all associated breakfast things are my fave but you get the idea. Besides, I used to have such epic once-a-week-designated pancake days with friends back in college that it is just lame that I hardly eat them anymore.

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Realistically, I probably love them so much because it gives me an excuse (as if I needed one) to eat more nut butter. Because… I really don’t feel like I need to justify this?! Actually because flat food surface= naked= needs nut butter or seed butter or coconut butter or all three (or just regular butter. I mean, obviously). And then a ton of other toppings because apparently I like decorating my food. And then playing with it. And then taking pictures. Let’s just pretend I grew up, okay?

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That would be three kinds of butters in one meal. I think I have a problem.

Also cat selfies. Ha.

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And pretty things! Mother Nature is so beautiful she doesn’t need a filter.

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But back to pancakes.

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These have actually become my favorite lunch of leisure lately, especially after some morning jazzercise general sweatiness. This particular recipe is so beyond easy to whip up, it’s stupid. And it contains less than five unprocessed ingredients, good fats, protein, and good carbs…exactly what I want after a workout. AND I can eat them with nut butter, which means I see absolutely nothing wrong with this picture. They are super light and fluffy, not overly sweet, and leave you feeling satisfied and not stuffed or comatose (hello traditional wheat-sugar-gluten-bad fat-undeniably delicious brunch, I’m looking at you).

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Indulge yourself! It’s almost Friday, you know you want breakfast for dinner…

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Banana Pancakes

Grain free, gluten free, refined sugar free, dairy free, paleo. Serves 1, yields about 4 good sized pancakes.

  • 1 banana
  • 1 egg
  • 1 egg white
  • scant 1/4 c zucchini, finely grated
  • 1 tsp coconut flour*
  • optional: a sprinkle each of cinnamon and nutmeg

*I vary this amount according to how much zucchini I use; the batter is runny so a little thickener doesn’t come amiss. However, if you hate coconut or don’t have coconut flour, you can leave it out no problem.

In a bowl, mash the banana like a boss, then whisk in eggs until mostly smooth (lumps are totes fine, these are your pancakes after all so no one can judge your lumps). Stir in grated zucchini, coconut flour and spices if using. Let sit while your prep your griddle or pan: grease pan of choice (I like a flat griddle, a sauté pan is fine) with some organic butter and heat over medium. Once hot, spoon batter out into roughly four pancakes (or go crazy and make silver dollar little bitty ones)… blah blah blah, y’all know how to make pancakes… let the edges solidify and the tops get that bubbly-sheen to them before attempting to flip… let cook until cooked through… plate prettily and serve, preferably with a truckload of various nut/seed butters and some fresh coconut aaannnnd plain yogurt. Mmmm.

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Because, BEETS!!!

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I’m having a moment.

Like, RIGHT NOW.

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Because I just took a bite of my lunch and my insides kind of exploded, it was so good. BEST LUNCH EVER! Okay. Not really, probably, but extremely delicious at this particular point in my life and too good not to share. Because, lunch. Which can unfortunately be extremely boring and sad, if not given the proper attention. I know for me it goes something like this: “going about my day lalala… shmaybe some jazzercise, oooh I think I’ll bake bread! And clean things! And OMG I’M STARVING how is it already noon?? Wander wander into the kitchen, yank open fridge and… ugh. Nothing exciting and I am too starving to seriously consider making something interesting. So… eggs. AGAIN. For the elevendy billionth time. Someone save me from the inevitable scrambled eggs!!!” And then no one does so I eat them anyway. Laaaaame.

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BUT!! Today. Today was different.

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Because there were BEETS in the fridge!!! And I looooove beets [Probably excessively. I have never met a beet salad I didn’t like]. Alas, no goat cheese… but that forced me to improvise with cute my beet-lets. And so. Have you ever shredded a beet with cheese grater?? It’s actually quite fun, they’re easier than carrots and don’t fly everywhere like zucchini. No, I don’t spend ALL of my time grating different vegetables. Just kind of… a lot of it, apparently, enough to make me an expert on inadvertant grated vegetable projectiles. Ahem. Moving on.

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This bowl.

A perfect balance of sweet, savory, chewy, crunchy, eggy, nutty, beety. What more could you want out of your normally marginalized midday meal? Give your lunch (and indirectly, yourself) some love and make it delicious. I promise it makes your day ten billion times better! But seriously. This is super fast, easy and delicious… AND full of whole foods just doin’ all kinds of fab things for your bod.

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Red Beet, Roasted Corn and Zucchini Hash, with Egg and Avo

A Wait.. Are those.. Cookies original! Straight from my brain box, don’t say I didn’t warn you. But seriously… make it! Gluten free, full of antioxidants, and vegetarian. Serves 1 [adapt amounts as needed! It’s ridiculously forgiving]. This could also be a really good breakfast, if you’re weird like me and crave veggies in the am. Super fast as well, provided you’re using precooked beets.

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  • 4 steamed and peeled beets, shredded on the large holes of a grater
  • 1/2 a large zucchini, shredded
  • small handful of fire roasted corn
  • small glug of good quality olive oil
  • 4-5 pecans, chopped
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 of a perfectly ripe avocado, cubed
  • salt+pepper to taste

Heat olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. Once the oil is warm, toss in shredded beets, zucchini, and corn. Sauté for a few minutes, until the veggies soften but are still just a bit crunchy. Season with salt and pepper, and toss in chopped pecans. Turn off heat and let sit for a second. Make your egg (simultaneously, in separate skillet if you’re a talented multitasker) however you like (I like a runny yolk for this but mine broke, so it cooked through. Wah). Top beet hash with egg, cubed avo, and more salt and pepper. Devour like no one’s watching, it’s that good! Or maybe I was just super in the mood for beets. Either way, enjoy your lunch!

Oh… one last thing. Obligatory New Year’s Day eating: cabbage with BACON (!!!), black eyed peas with BACON (!!!) and hot sauce. All my southern heritage in one bowl.

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What to do with quite demanding vegetables

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I have very demanding, rampaging vegetables on my counter.

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Cue late summer, bountiful garden harvest booty sitting in the kitchen yelling at me. Sort of. As much as a vegetable can ever yell at you, which is actually very little… except when it isn’t. Which is what’s happening right now as two extremely spotty, very disgruntled looking bananas clamor for my attention [helloooo, can you SEE how spotty we are?! Obviously you should make us into banana bread] right next to several massive, rando summer squash things that sprung from the compost and are slightly less delicious than zucchini. Who of course want to be made into zucchini bread. Or I guess technically that would be ‘random green-squash-variety bread’, but don’t tell them that. They were giving me enough dirty looks for a vegetable as it is. And threatening to roll all over the place and off the counter. Rude little suckers, aren’t they?!

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So I did what any sensible person would do when confronted by mass amounts of demanding produce…

I made BANANA ZUCCHINI BREAD. So there, clamoring veggies and spotty bananas. You have a baked goods home now, please leave me alone?!

Except don’t because having an excess of produce is probably the best thing ever.

At least in my life, it is.

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I had a friend over the other day and as I opened up the fridge, she goes, “Oh my god you have the most produce in your fridge I’ve ever seen!!” bahahha. Best situation ever. You can NEVER have too much fresh stuff. Even when it starts haranguing you to make it into things. Homemade chicken stock does that too, there are several jars in there wanting to become soup but ick it’s a thousand degrees outside and I already ran the oven like an idiot so no.

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I’ve just realized the amount of grammatically (no autocorrect, not dramatically) incorrect things in this post… too bad!! Studying for the GRE means I don’t have to be coherent in my personal blog space.

I told you I was pretty much five years old on the inside, right?! Well yeah. Case in point. But hoooomg was it delicious.

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So anyway. It’s hot and if you have an abundance of late summer produce, bake away! regardless of the fact that it will make your kitchen nastily hot. Don’t sweat it, just have a dance party in there while you’re baking and it will be like you’re sweating on purpose. Clearly I’m a genius.

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Banana Summer Squash Bread

I baked this in an 8 by 8 pan just to be different, though a loaf pan is totes fine too. Yield is about 9 good sized squares from the square pan. Can easily be adapted to be gluten free with all oat flour. Refined sugar free, whole grain, and vegan. Hooray! Also you get sneaky veggies, and who would say no to that?! The recipe is adapted from Hummusapien, here!

  • 1 c oat flour [I grind my own in a food processor]
  • 1/2 c whole wheat pastry flour
  • 1/2 c almond flour
  • 1/2 tsp fine sea salt
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 2 tbsp ground flaxseed+6 tbsp water
  • 1 c mashed, overripe bananas (the super spotty ones that are being annoying on your counter)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tbsp raw coconut nectar
  • 1 c grated summer squash variety, squeezed [I use a paper towel] after grating to remove moisture
  • 1/3 c extra dark chocolate chips

Preheat the oven to 350 and lightly grease your pan of choice (I used coconut oil, as always).

In a smallish bowl, whisk together flax and water and set aside to gel for your flax egg. In a large bowl, whisk together oat flour, whole wheat, almond flour, salt, baking powder and soda, and cinnamon. In a smaller bowl, mash bananas and stir in vanilla extract. Pour wet into dry, add flax egg, and stir until mostly incorporated. Fold in grated squash and chocolate chips. Spread the batter into the prepared pan, and bake for about 30 minutes, until a tester comes out clean (the time will be closer to an hour for a standard loaf pan). I found that a tester came out clean in mine at 20 minutes, but it would have been way too gooey so I stuck it back in for another 10—your call if you like SUPER gooey bread. I turned mine out onto a cooling rack immediately, but watch for breakage. Store in the fridge for super freshness! I like mine cold anyway, preferably with a good smear of almond butter.

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Cookies n’stuff.

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Excuses? No, not really.

I don’t have much to say for myself.

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Except that it’s FRIDAY which means…

I missed cookie Thursday, so obviously we need to have cookie Friday. Duh.

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Besides that, I am officially UN spotty AND I have tonsillitis no longer. What what! Clearly cookies are a necessary celebration. Besides that, I riffed on the lentil cookies again and these were too unusual and good not to share. I got the idea since I wanted to figure out another gluten free cookie based on lentils that could be chocolate free for my choco-free friends (Jill, these are for you!).

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I promise to do something savory or NOT a cookie some point soon. I mean, ideally my next post but my food life is unpredictable so no guarantees.

In other random food news (such is my life: a string of food-events. Breakfast! Snack! Lunch! Snack! Dinner! Snack!), Mutti had a birthday last week, which meant deliciousness at Boulevard and high tea. Which also meant a food coma ensued. Sooo worth it. Apparenlty there are also going to be a thousand pictures in this post, sorry I’m not sorry I reeeeealllyyy like photography (or whatever it is that I do)!!

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Truth:

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Additionally, did you know that eggs+sautéed mushrooms and spinach+chopped walnuts+chopped dates+a small sprinkle of parmesan is unaccountably delicious? Because it is. Promise. Hey!! This is savory. Mostly… Do I get any points for that??

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But anyway. Cookies. The reason we’re here in the first place. Happy allergen free cookie Friday! Proof that everyone can (and should) enjoy a cookie (or five) :)

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Peanut Butter Lentil Cookies

Lightly sweet, as I prefer my ‘snacking’ cookies (as opposed to full on indulgent dessert). Full of protein and fiber, as well as a host of other minerals and nutrients and such (phosphorus, manganese, Vit B6), they’re also gluten free, vegan, and refined sugar free. I’ll snap to that. Recipe modified from the chocolate-chocolate chip lentil version from last week, here. Yield: 15 cookies (maybe would have been 16 if I could have stopped eating the dough, oops).

  • 1.5 c green lentils, cooked
  • 1/3 c organic salted peanut butter (mine was chunky)
  • 1/2 c rolled oats
  • 1/4 c pure maple syrup
  • 1.5 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/4 c unsweetened shredded coconut
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 c dark chocolate chips**
  • 1/8 c raw cocoa nibs**

**replace with carob for chocolate-free cookie fabulousness!

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If needed, precook your lentils (1/2 c dry=1.5 c cooked).

Preheat the oven to 350, and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

These are beyond easy (thank goodness for that because excuse me but who wants to make complicated cookies when they want cookies NOW?! Yes, that’s what I thought): Toss cooked lentils into the food processor, and process until mostly smooth. Add in peanut butter, oats, maple, vanilla, coconut, and baking powder, and pulse until it’s all combined into a big, deliciously thick mess. Stir in chocolate chips and cocoa nibs (I just take out the blade and use the bowl of the food processor). Drop by the tablespoon-sized ball onto the prepared cookie sheet, and bake 12  minutes until the tops are just firm. Let cool for a few, then move to a cooling rack to cool completely. Or just devour them immediately; why bother taking up fridge space for storage?!

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Tonsillitis=antibiotics=spottiness. Excuse me WHAT?!

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Cookies.

For when you start with tonsillitis and then end up with an allergic reaction to amoxicillin, AFTER the entire course is done.

I mean, COME ON.

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Dear body: Okay. I get it. You are no longer tolerant of things ending in ‘cillin’, and given that I’m not crazy about antibiotics anyway (unless its a dire situation, ie. can’t see tonsils on account of too much gunk), I promise promise not to take any more of the ‘cillin’ family. Next time please can we just use our words and you can TELL me that you don’t like something, rather than SHOWING me how much you hate it with a massive out break of red spots? Okay thanks. Love, soul residing in currently very spotty environs.

Because I really really really hate being spotty. Cookies might not even assuage how much crap this is.

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Now I’ve had several bendadryl and am somewhat struggling to complete my sentences. Because… I really wanted to spend my weekend looking like a red and white spotted cheetah. NOT.

Le sigh.

Since my friends all know me so well, they naturally suggested cookies. So I made myself cookies because that’s apparently what you do when your bipedally locomoting meat vehicle decides to throw a massive fit and make you unfit for viewing by other humans.

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But true to form, of course I made weird cookies. I mean, I’m stuck at home being spotty so why not get weird?! Benadryl makes me weird anyway so let’s just get weirder, right?! Except weird is my normal because a) you already know I put lentils in everything and b) I’ve already subjected you to green flecks in my cookies so this is really just riffing on an old theme…. of my habit of putting green stuff where it probably doesn’t belong. Too bad. I’m spotty and I like it and therefore … obviously it belongs there. I think my life is complete now: I have successfully put lentils and power greens into a cookie and made them taste good. WHAT.

On the plus side, my tonsils look normal now!

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Powerhouse Cookies

Fudgy, chocolatey, and… full of greens?! Gluten free, vegan, refined sugar free. High in protein, low in sugar. Not too sweet. So freaking easy since all you really get dirty is your food processor and a spoon. Yield: I got 19 cookies, on the smaller side (but not too small). Recipe adapted from Homemade Hearts, here!

  • 1.5 c black lentils, cooked
  • 1 c mixed power greens (mine was kale, chard, and spinach)
  • 1/2 c rolled oats
  • 1/4 c unsalted almond butter
  • 1/4 c pure maple syrup
  • 1.5 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/3 c unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp fine sea salt
  • 1/4 c extra dark chocolate chips + 1/8 c raw cocoa nibs

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If needed, precook your lentils (1/2 c dry + 1 c water until soft).

Line a baking sheet (or two) with parchment paper (I used one. lazy.). Preheat the oven to 350.

In a food processor, whizz lentils and greens until uniformly blended (though there should still be a bit of texture to it). Toss in oats, almond butter, maple, vanilla, cocoa powder, baking powder, and salt, and blend to combine, scraping down the sides of the food processor as needed. Remove blade, and stir in chocolate chips and cocoa nibs. Drop by the rounded tablespoon onto the prepared cookie sheets, and bake for 13 minutes, until the top is just slightly firm. Remove and let cool on a rack. Store in an airtight container in the fridge!

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Thursday = cookies. Clearly.

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Happy Cookie Thursday (which is almost Friday and therefore almost the weekend)!!!

It also happened to be genie pant Thursday. Whatever. My Thursday needed a little sparkle and purple genie pants were obviously the apparel of choice for work.

So anyway, cookies.

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I was in a sorority in college. Or rather, I still am a member of said sorority, but I lived in the house for two years during my undergrad. I know, I know. You’re shocked. YOU, you say?? My hippie-granola-genie-pant-wearing self in a sorority?! Yep. Better believe it. Thankfully, Willamette is teensy and liberal arts, and therefore has a really different (in a good way) Greek system. My house was full of eclecticaly hilarious and awesome individuals, so I fit right in.

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But… what does this have to do with cookies? Well actually… I seem to have retained an ingrained habit of cookies on Thursdays. And for this, I can blame thank living in the house. Our chef made cookies at lunch every Thursday the two years I lived in, and after I moved out my senior year, I sort of kept that up (although I made them probably way more frequently than just once a week, let’s be real here). But nowadays, I seem to have fallen back into the Thursday routine! Which is fab, because if you think about it, Thursdays are a perfect day for cookies. Because it’s not quite Friday and the weekend, and you might need a little pick me up or something, you know? What better than a cookie? And then besides, once the batch is gone, it’s weekend time! Hooray!

Mine shall tide me over until I leave on my yoga retreat this weekend, ahhhh… or rather, let’s make that ommmmm….

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Triple Threat Almond Cookies

Thick and a little chewy-crumbly, these cookies are lightly sweet and salty. They remind me a little of salted almond-chocolate, but minus the chocolate (sorry if that makes no sense at all). Gluten free, vegan, refined sugar free, and full of healthy fats. Yield: 10 cookies. I adapted the recipe from La Gallette, here!

  • 1.5 c almond flour
  • 1/4 tsp fine grain sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 2 tbsp maple syrup, grade B
  • 2.5 tbsp melted unrefined coconut oil
  • 2 tbsp unsalted almond butter
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • scant 1/4 tsp almond extract
  • 1/3 c raw almonds, roughly chopped

This is maybe the easiest thing ever. Preheat the oven to 350, and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

Combine the dry ingredients in a large bowl. Toss in wet ingredients, and stir to combine, followed by the almonds. The dough doesn’t come together like a typical cookie dough, but you should be able to form balls of it when you squash it together. Roll into about a tablespoon-sized ball, flatten slightly, and place on the cookie sheet. Repeat… obviously… and try not to eat all the dough (which is fab, by the way). Bake for 12 minutes, let cool on the sheet for a minute, then move to a cooling rack. They’re a little crumbly, so be aware when you’re moving them. Mine have all disappeared so I can’t really speak to how well they store… but I usually store things made of almond flour in the fridge if they’re going to hang around for awhile.

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It’s Saturday and my brain has fallen out, has anyone seen it?

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Jazzercize, kelp noodles, and ecstatic dance.

That was my Wednesday.

You know, I kind of don’t even surprise myself anymore. Ha. Not that I’m predictable by any means, buuuut whenever I do something weird now it’s not weird. It’s just normal. Weird is my normal.

And I am SO okay with that.

Welcome to my weirdness. Not that you weren’t inundated with it already anyway—I make sure that enough of it makes it onto the blog so you can get a sufficient picture. Just in case you were at all unsure…

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But you LOVE my weirdness! Which is why you’re reading this anyway. Or just skip to the recipe if you’ve had enough weirdness for one day, it’s fine, we can still be friends.

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And one more thing. I just got off work and I need to get this off my chest. PLEASE KEEP YOUR DEMON CHILDREN OUT OF MY STORE.

Whew. Okay. I feel better now. But seriously. I like children. Really, I do. But I most definitely don’t appreciate them running screaming through the store and slamming things. Or attempting to slam each other into the bathroom door. Excuse me but WHERE IS YOUR PARENTAL UNIT?! And why aren’t they attached to you?? This is emphatically not babysitting, thankyouverymuch I am not paid for that so… no. Just no. There were two spectacular specimens of demon children in the store today that were completely unaccompanied and unsupervised for a good half an hour… really people? If you have children and take them shopping, please keep them attached to your person so that I don’t inadvertently drop kick them out of my section. Okaythanksherearesomestretchypantsbye.

Now I really feel better. And if you’ve stuck with me this long, here’s the reward for your waiting: a kelptastic noodley bowl! Yay!

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Kelptastic Noodle Bowl

Gluten free, vegan, and stuff. Like low carb, whatever whatever blah blah but really? It’s just delicious. Trust me. Recipe is from the depths of my brain and stomach. I was hungry, so this happened. Eeeeasillyyyy adaptable so use whatever you have on hand, but this particular combo is my favorite. In the pictures I used leftover chicken but I actually liked it better with black beans, so use whatever you have/like. I got three lunch servings (for me) out of a package of kelp noodles—probably would be enough dinner for 3.

  • 1 package kelp noodles, rinsed and cut into smaller pieces
  • two good handfuls of white mushrooms, chopped
  • 1 bell pepper, diced
  • 1 can of black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 3 small Persian cucumbers, diced
  • 3 tbsp almond butter (mine was salted)
  • 1 tsp freshly grated ginger
  • a good splash of coconut aminos (roughly 1 tbsp)
  • 1- 2 tbsp bragg’s liquid aminos*
  • 1 avocado, diced

*I use this to taste at the end—it depends on how salty your almond butter is or isn’t

Rinse and cut up kelp noodles so they’re a little more manageable. Toss all diced veggies into a steamer and steam until tender. In the bottom of a bowl large enough to hold all your veggies and noodles, whisk together almond butter, ginger, and coconut aminos. Add several tablespoons of warm water to thin out the sauce, then toss noodles, steamed veggies, beans, and cucumbers into the bowl and stir to combine, until sauce is evenly distributed. Salt and pepper as needed, and top with avocado. Devour immediately, obviously.

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Lemon+curd=heaven, Just sayin’ (even though this post is actually about chickpeas)

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I’d like to announce two things.

One. I very nearly almost just fell off my balance ball that I’m currently sitting on. As in, I got up and when I tried to sit down again it had rolled away. Luckily, since I am of superior intelligence (no comments please), I outwitted it and somehow managed to land back on the rolly round thing. HA.

Two. I think I ate my weight in lemon curd today. Ugh those scones are just SO GOOD and then the lemon curd is just SO GOOD ALSO and I just.can’t.stop. I mean, it would be such a shame to waste any, right??! Right. Lemon+curd=heaven. Just sayin.

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And three. Even though I only said two, too bad. Aerial yoga! It’s fun!! Just hangin’ out on a casual Tuesday night.

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But also.

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Chickpeas! Or alternatively garbanzo beans. Or whatever. Regardless, they’re delicious. And a hefty source of protein and fiber. Nothing to quibble over here, they’re clearly good for you. I’m absurdly obsessed with this lunch. Varying my diet? Ha. As if. I feel like I’ve eaten this for lunch the last several days in a row. Minus today, of course, when apparently I ate scones and lemon curd for lunch (reference above picture if you were at all confused about my devotion to anything that combines the words lemon and curd in the same sentence).

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But anyway. This makes a fab lunch or dinner, and can be thrown together in less time than it takes to actually eat it, which in my book is a plus when I return from yoga and needfoodnow. Also, this is one of those fabby dishes where you take whatever is lurking in your fridge, and voila, lunch! Love that. Almost as much as I love lemon curd and very nearly but not really falling off my balance ball.

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Chickpea Vegetable Sauté in Pumpkin Mustard Sauce

This recipe comes from my grey matter, and the depths of my fridge. Serves one, unless you mega increase ingredients. This is how I usually make it, with preferred ingredients, but feel free to substitute in whatever you have lurking about. Gluten free, dairy free, vegan, high protein, high fiber.

  • 1 stalk celery, chopped
  • 1/2 a zucchini, chopped
  • 4-5 button mushrooms, chopped
  • 2 good handfuls of greens (mine are usually chard+spinach+kale, or arugula)
  • a good glug of extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/3 c chickpeas, if canned–drained and rinsed
  • 2 healthy spoonfuls of pumpkin puree
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • a few squirts of stoneground mustard, to taste
  • sliced avocado for topping
  • chopped nuts for topping (I like cashews+walnuts)

Heat the glug of olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. Toss in celery, zucchini, mushrooms, and greens, and sauté them for a few minutes until the veggies begin to soften. Add chickpeas, pumpkin, and salt and pepper, and let cook until everything is heated through. Pour out in to a bowl, and stir in mustard. Top with avocado and chopped nuts! Diced cucumber is also good as a topper if you happen to have that around.

This makes great leftovers too, I’ve taken it for a work lunch more times than I can count.

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