Strawberry, Apple + Almond Breakfast Muffins

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* My only advice for these is serve warm and ENJOY!

Strawberry, Apple + Almond Breakfast Muffins ~ Adapted from the What Katie Ate Cookbook

1 1/4 cup self-rising flour

1/2 cup almond meal

1/2 cup superfine sugar

2 tsp baking powder

1 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon

Finely grated zest of 1/2 a lemon (I used a whole, you can’t ever have enough!)

Large pinch of fine sea salt

2 tsp natural vanilla extract

1 stick unsalted butter, melted and cooled

2 large eggs, lightly beaten

1 apple, peeled, cored, and cut into small cubes

6 large strawberries, hulled and quartered

Handful of sliced blanched almonds

1-2 tbsp light brown sugar

Warm water (see below)

 

Preheat your oven to 400 degrees. Line a 12-cup muffin tin with paper baking cups or rounds of parchment paper. In a large bowl mix together the flour, almond meal, superfine sugar, baking powder, cinnamon, lemon zest, and salt. In a separate bowl combine the vanilla extract, melted butter, eggs, and 3/4 cup warm water. Add the wet ingredients to the dry and mix well, then add the apple cubes and gently stir to combine. Spoon the batter into the prepared muffin pan, filling each cup to about three quarters full. Place two strawberry quarters on top of each muffin, then sprinkle with the almonds and brown sugar. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of a muffin comes out clean.

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Oven-Roasted Quinoa + Spiced Apples, Carrots, & Red Onions

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Warm and nutty quinoa mixed with fresh lemon and parsley paired with roasted spiced vegetables. A lovely combination of unusual flavors, the bite of the red onion with the sweetness of the apple all tied together with a hint of cardamom. Serve as a side dish with chicken or fish.

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Oven-Roasted Quinoa + Spiced Apples, Carrots, & Red Onion

1/2 tsp ground cardamom

1/2 tsp ground coriander

1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper

1 tsp salt

3 medium carrots

1 medium apple

1 medium red onion

1 1/2 tbsp EVOO

i cup quinoa, rinsed

zest of 1/2 a lemon + 2 tsp lemon juice

1/4 cup finely chopped flat leaf parsley

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. In a small bowl stir together the cardamom, coriander, pepper, and 3/4 tsp of the salt. Peel the carrots, slice in half length wise then into one inch pieces. Half and core the apple and slice into one-inch cubes. Half and thinly slice the red onion. In a 9 x 13 inch baking dish, add the carrots, apples, red onion and EVOO. Add the spice mixture and stir to combine.

In a 8 or 9 inch baking dish add the rinsed quinoa and spread into an even layer. Place the quinoa and the vegetables in the oven. Toast the quinoa until fragrant and golden, about 8 minutes, then pour 2 cups of water over the quinoa and loosely cover the dish with a sheet of aluminum foil. Cook the quinoa until it looks fluffy, about 15-20 minutes. Remove from oven, fluff with a fork, re-cover with the foil and set aside.

Meanwhile continue to roast the vegetables, stirring occasionally, until onions start to blacken around the edges and the carrots are tender. About 30 minutes total.

Transfer quinoa to a serving dish, stir in remaining 1/4 tsp salt, the lemon zest and juice, then parsley. Serve with vegetables.

* I wrote this recipe down at some point in the last two years and can’t remember where it came from.

~

Apple Yogurt Upside-Down Cake

A Morning Worthy of Cake. Apple Cake.

apple_cake_1I am back! Shall I do a little dance? I think YES. It has been a busy busy past couple of months, the highlight being a romp through the Scottish highlands and Dublin in December. But it is a new year and I can’t wait to start putting more time in here.

This tasty treat is meant for fall, when the leaves are just starting to turn and the first cool breezes make themselves known…but when you have all the ingredients on hand and the exact number of crisp pink lady apples staring at you from the side of the counter…I say go for it. This is the coldest week I’ve experienced yet in New York (I actually NEED one of those face-sweaters..) and this cake is as delicious in the middle of Winter as it is in Fall. Full of warmth and comfort it is meant to be eaten at any time of day, while sitting on the couch, with thirty quilts, a thick pair of woolen socks and a cup of hot tea.

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Apple Yogurt Upside-Down Cake ~ adapted from Small Plates & Sweet Treats

3 pink lady apple

2 tbsp coconut oil

2 tbsp + more honey

2 tsp vanilla extract

3/4 cup brown rice flour + 1 tbsp

1/3 cup almond flour

1/4 cup millet flour + 1 tbsp

1/4 cup tapioca starch

1 tbsp baking powder

1/2 tsp baking soda

1/2 heaping tsp ground cinnamon

1/4 heaping tsp ground ginger

1/4 tsp fine sea salt

3 eggs

1/2 cup packed dark muscovado sugar

1/2 cup whole-milk plain yogurt

1/2 cup olive oil

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly grease a 8 by 8-inch square cake pan (or an 8 by 3-inch round cake pan) and line the bottom with a piece of parchment paper. Core the apples, quarter them, then cut each piece in half once more. Heat the coconut oil, 2 tbsp of honey and vanilla extract in a large saute pan (any soup or sauce pot will work, you may just need to cook the apples for a bit longer) over medium heat. Add the sliced apples and cook for about 10 minutes or until apples are soft but not mushy. Let cool for a few minutes before handling. Arrange the apples on the bottom of the cake pan as tightly as possible and pour any remaining liquid in the pot over the apples.

In a large bowl, whisk together all the flours, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger, and salt. In a separate smaller bowl mix the eggs, dark muscovado sugar, honey (I did about 2 tbsp add more for a sweeter cake), olive oil, and yogurt. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry and stir until combined. Pour the batter into the cake pan making sure that it is evenly distributed over the apples. Bake for about 50min-1 hour, or until a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean. Let the cake cool for about 15 minutes before carefully flipping. Allow to cool before serving. Keep in the refrigerator for 3 or 4 days or freeze.

Serve warm by itself or with a speckled vanilla bean ice cream.

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~ Stay Warm! ~

Apple Tarts

Apple Tarts

I picked up the cookbook, La Tartine Gourmande, a couple weeks ago and am obsessed. I am constantly finding myself flipping through its beautiful pages wondering what I will make next. I have mentioned this before but this book speaks to me, I am in love with everything from the recipes to the images. The one recipe I couldn’t wait to try is Bea’s take on the apple tart. With a strong taste of lemon, spicy ginger, walnuts, and sweet pink lady apple on a thin crumbly crust there is no way one can go wrong.

As spring approaches I am finding myself cooking more with apples and roots, funny the foods you can crave sometimes. I Experimented with a celeriac apple soup earlier this week with hints of sweet potato (also inspired from La Tartine Gourmande)

But lets get back to these delicious tarts. They are supposed to be made into a larger size, so the apple can be fully fanned out. Is anyone else an admirer of fanned food? You can slice almost any ingredient paper thin, fan it out on a plate, and you are instantly a food style master. Try it sometime. Due to a lack of baking supplies I ended up baking my tarts in various sized muffin tins. I thoroughly enjoyed ending up with a large plate full of mini-apple-tartlets.

Apple Tarts ~ {From La Tartine Gourmande, Recipes for an Inspired Life}

I ended up using more almond flour and less sugar. I highly recommend picking up this book…Even if just to make a plate full of apple-tartlets.

Spicy Carrot Ginger Soup

It’s still not to late for soup.

Spicy Carrot Ginger Soup

Spring is around the corner, you can smell it in the air. I find myself daydreaming at work of beach towels and lemonade.

Unfortunately, at least here in New York, the weather has not completely caught up with my mind yet. So pull out that soup pot and take advantage of our last few chilly weeks. This soup is simple and warms you from the inside out, the ginger gives it a spicy kick and when topped with chopped pear the combo of chilled/sweet with spicy is quite pleasant.

This recipe was scribbled down on a piece of scrap paper at work, I cannot remember where I found the inspiration for this wonder, but will update if I come across it again.

Spicy Carrot Ginger Soup

Olive oil

4 large carrots, peeled and chopped

1 small onion, chopped

1 minced garlic clove, or 1 to 2 tsp of already minced garlic

3 tbsp diced and peeled fresh ginger (use less if you don’s want your soup to have a kick)

1 cup cubed peeled butternut squash

1 peeled and diced apple (I used pink lady)

4 1/2 cups vegetable broth

1 1/2 tsp salt (or to taste)

12 ounces coconut milk

diced pear

In a large soup pot heat about 2 tsp of oil (I used olive oil) over medium heat. Saute carrots and onion until soft, then add the garlic, ginger, butternut squash, and apple. And continue to saute for another couple minutes. Add broth, and salt if desired, reduce heat to medium-low and simmer covered for around 45 minutes, or until vegetables are tender. Blend, then stir in coconut milk and add any additional spices to taste. Serve hot topped with fresh cut pear.

Have a lovely Sunday ~

Pomegranate~Oat B-fast. a.k.a. Dessert.

This mornings Breakfast was so heavenly it shouldn’t be allowed … or should more often maybe 🙂

Pomegranate~Oats

You better bet I had a frozen banana ready and waiting for this mornings breakfast.  I even put my normal ‘lazi-ness’ aside and removed the soft serve from the blending cup and into a stylish mug.  A result of Saturday I dare say.  This was an amazing combo, the graham crackers were from Trader Joe’s and are a bit thicker then normal ones, which is for the better 🙂

Pomegranate~Oats
4-8 ounces pomegranate kefir [up to you on consistency]
1 frozen banana
splash of vanilla extract
lots of cinnamon
1/3-1/2 cup raw rolled oats
1 tbsp peanut butter
1 tbsp chia seeds
2 cinnamon graham crackers [broken into pieces]
Blend banana with cinnamon and splash of vanilla extract, empty into dish.  Top with kefir, oats, graham cracker pieces, and chia seeds.  Then garnish with a bit of shredded coconut, cacao nibs, and more cinnamon, it is up to you 😉
Mix ~ Enjoy

After running some errands I decided to stop by whole foods.  Again.  I blame this on not having access to one till last month so I’m trying to make up for lost time.  ALSO there are samples galore on the weekends, a college girl on a budgets dream.  Everything from wild caught breaded fish with organic ketchup and raw granola to locally made yogurt and a frozen chili chocolate cheesecake that should be illegal.

After perusing for an hour or so the salad bar lured me to its never ending variety and I ended up coming home with dinner B-)

Mixed greens and spinach….

Roasted Sweet Potato things = God these were good.  Has anyone ever had sweet potatoes that they haven’t liked?

Chili tofu and balsamic tofu

Roasted garlic cloves, edemame, shredded squash and zucchini, some spinach and orzo, some asian cabbage with sesame

Who knew tofu was so camera friendly?

Green and kalamata olives galore ❤

I swear this salad bowl was not the size of China, I have a bad time resisting putting one of everything in there though – crazy combinations result.

Tonight I wanted to try some new booty from my recent grocery trip.

Apple.  Sliced thin and wonderful.

Justin’s chocolate hazelnut butter.  I bought some individual packets of this brand because if truth be told…I have way to many open nut butters right now but have never tried Justin’s before.  If only there were sample sized packets like these of everything!  A solo eaters dream…..

Next up was a new Jam.  Having just used up the jar of apricot I purchased Raspberry today.  Probably one of my favorite flavors.  A spoonful on top of 4 oz of brown rice crisp [another of today’s purchases I can’t wait to have fun with] and a splash of pomegranate kefir.  I love to use splash as a measurement… anyways this hit the spot.  I swoon for raspberries of all forms. 🙂

Too much flash

Seeds are always a plus in jam…

Song of the day: “An Honest Mistake” – by The Bravery

One of my favorite songs by them.

And Keep Posted!!! – I will be having a giveaway coming up 😉 so don’t miss out.

Pad See Ew Please

So This morning started off with a long awaited Green Monster!  An Almond Butter, Banana, Pomegranate green monster to be exact.

Last night was amazing, I had some great dances and even did a few moves … IN THE AIR … I will definitely be finding that partner again 😀  Needless to say I slept well afterwards.

I awoke ready to get my green on.

Almond Butter, Banana, Pomegranate Green Monster :
1-2 tbsp chia seeds
lots of cinnamon 😉
2 extra large handfuls of fresh spinach
frozen banana – broken into pieces
1 tbsp almond butter
4-8 ounces pomegranate kefir – depends on desired consistancy
topped with a swirl of almond butter and Udi’s artisan granola

This was like a peanut butter and jelly sandwich in liquid form.  It was a heavenly combination, refreshing, party in my mouth.  I will be making this again soon! 🙂

Song of the Day:  “Elephant Gun” by Beirut.

I came across this band a little over a year ago and fell in love.  They are without a doubt on my list of bands to see live.  This particular song was the one I chose for my reel on my website as well.

At work today I came across a photo link from a performance I did back in February with my college’s swing dance group.  I didn’t even know these existed!

BSA Dance Photos

I am the one wearing the tiny black hat. 😉 Kind of weird to be browsing through videos on you tube and come across a slideshow of yourself, though …

Lunch and dinner were Pad See Ew.  I waitressed at a family owned Thai restaurant for 2 years and got to eat for free while working!  I was spoiled rotten in the category of Thai food.  So I was so excited to go for Thai with the office.  The portions were so big that I easily made dinner out of it.  Two birds with one stone 😉

I asked them to make my tofu ‘soft’ tofu – which means they cook it with the rest of the meal instead of deep frying it first.  I like the tofu better this way, it takes on a bit too much of a spongy texture when fried + is better for you.  Two stones again? 😛  It was just the way thai noodles should be with a good bit of vegetables in the form of broccoli, cabbage, onions, and bean sprouts.

After a 45 min trip to the gym I had an amazing apple.

A very photogenic apple 🙂  Do you find that an apple sliced thin like potato chips is more appetizing then one normally??  I found it to be so.  A thin, crisp burst of apple goodness with every bite.

Still Craving something else I turned to the mini peanut butter and jelly sandwich.

Trader Joe’s organic creamy peanut butter with apricot jelly on small rice crackers.  Why I love small rice crackers? – The serving size is about 35-40 crackers!               .. in love –

You can eat them open faced…

Topped with dried cranberries…

Or as an actual sandwich 😉

PB & J can be too much fun, on your night off.

What’s your favorite way to eat Peanut Butter and Jelly?  Do you prefer a different nut butter?

– Sweet Potato Fries –

I slept horribly last night :/

My stomach was not agreeing with something I ate yesterday, or maybe it was the combination.  Wish I knew so I don’t do it again….

B-fast this morning was something fast because I woke up late again.  So into a bowl went some coconut milk kefir, a chopped banana, and some Udi’s granola.  This granola is realllllly good, my Uncle brought me back this bag from Colorado and I’m savoring it 😉

I ended up meeting the fam again at the last minute for lunch where I had a black bean burger and sweet potato fries.  🙂  No matter where I am if sweet potatoes are on the menu, in any form, the chances are pretty very high that I’ll order them 😉

It was blackbean-mazing to say the least.

OHHHHHHHHH the Glory of the Sweet Potato Fries …

In my sleep deprived state I planned on coming back home and just going to sleep.  Instead I read a bit, Outlander series – I’m addicted right now, had a large apple with peanut butter and a bit more granola.

By some crazy act of god I was completely energized after this……Maybe it was the peanut butter, I’m gonna have to watch that stuff 😉

So I went to the ‘mini’ gym downstairs for about 40 mins.  Story of my life:  I was not even on a machine 60 seconds when the plastic shell covering on the side just falls off to the floor.  This was a HUGE piece of plastic.  I just stared at it.  Picked up my stuff.  And moved to next machine like nothing happened.  Haha.  Yeahhh.

What are some of your favorite go too energy foods?  Peanut butter, it’ll never get old. 😀