Recipe Redux: Lucky Sweet Corn and Citrus Muffins

Well Hello There!! Long time no see eh? (…as I’ve begun every post since school started. Sorry) This year has been crazy! But I couldn’t pass up another month of recipe making for you!!! I am officially on break – so hopefully I can put forth a couple of posts soon! For now -enjoy these muffins!!

The theme for December’s Recipe Redux was ringing in the New Year with lucky foods!

Good Luck Foods: What will you be serving to get the New Year started with a little luck? Be it black eyed peas and greens, Chinese noodles or even a special family recipe you serve on New Year’s Eve or Day. Please share your good luck dish to start off 2014 in a healthy way.

Well if I’m going to be perfectly honest, I’ve never really done much as far as traditional or lucky foods for NY (except for some sparkling cider in a champagne glass to feel fancy), but of course thats nothing a little research cant fix!

Lets see….lucky foods include: fish (ew), pork (babe), lentils, greens, noodles….ah! Cornbread! And round fruits! I could work with those!

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But, if you know me, I am a baker at heart and a lover of sweets. So cornbread became sweet corn muffins!

We have a satsuma tree out in our backyard, which gives us the bestest, most amazing satsumas ever. Have you ever eaten a satsuma orange straight off the tree? Its divine. This year we harvested over 30 pounds from the one tiny tree. AKA we have (delicious amazing) Satsumas coming out of our ears. Sooo those got put in too.

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Then I added some coconut extract for a buttery flavor, and some chocolate chips because chocolate should always be considered lucky. I mean, don’t you feel lucky when you eat chocolate? Also -what better way to start the new year than with chocolate? There isn’t one. Ergo chocolate is lucky.

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Anyway. I was completely playing around with this recipe. And I have never ever ever had good luck with cornbread. But I created these as my first official baked good of break (which is an important position) and they were a complete success!! My stepdad even ate 3! HAPPYDANCELACEY!!!!!

So pretty -and the house smelled amazing!

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Sweet and buttery from the corn and maple syrup, with the essence and pop of fresh oranges (slash satsumas), brought together with the depth of dark chocolate chips and a hint of coconut. The texture is simply perfect too! Fluffy yet still hearty, like a corn muffin should be! These babies came out amazing. Its a small batch recipe (it makes 7 -LUCKY NUMBER ALERT), but considering the fact that there are only 2 left after 12 hours and a family of three, you miiiiggghhtt want to double the recipe 🙂

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Lucky Sweet Corn and Citrus Muffins

(makes 7)

  • 1/2 C. Spelt flour
  • 1/2 C. fine corn meal (like Masa)
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp orange zest (satsuma, mandarin)
  • 3 T. raw sugar
  • 3-4 T. almond milk
  • 1/4 tsp vinegar
  • 1/2 C. fresh orange juice (satsuma, mandarin)
  • 3 T. maple syrup (could probably sub honey)
  • 1 T. ground flax seed
  • 1/2 tsp coconut extract (or vanilla)
  • 1/3 C. corn kernels (frozen or canned)
  • 1/4 C. chocolate chips
  • orange slices for topping

Preheat oven to 350 F. Grease a muffin tin. Mix together the flour through sugar in a medium bowl. mix together the vinegar and almond milk, set aside for a few minutes to sour. Now mix together the almond milk, OJ, syrup, flax, and extract. Pour into the dry mixture. Fold in the corn and chocolate chips, then distrubute batter into the pan. Bake for 18-20 minutes (tooth pick test!). Allow to cool before eating.

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So we are in agreement then? Lets start the new year with pretty muffins and chocolate!!!

Don’t forget to check out the other lucky recpies this month!

WIAW: Sorta kinda just desserts

Happy WIAW!!

Today is just gonna be a shorty post. as I type it is increasingly late on Tuesday night and I have procrastinated on hw to the point where if its not due tomorrow, its not getting done.  I need sleep and fast!!

At my house, we almost always have some form of dessert around! Between cravings and a love for sweet cooking, this comes as no suprise. Its a daily occurance. We typically keep them on the healthier side, but do indulge now and then! As evidenced by this week’s photos, the dessert monsters are in full force lately. I think we have at least 3 options in the fridge right now….

Moral of this WIAW: Life’s short, eat dessert first. And also for lunch/breakfast/dinner/snack. You know what? Just eat some dessert now kay? (bonus if it has hidden veggies, like most of mine do, and its a healthy habit then right?)

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Heather’s Pumpkin Pie French Toast became a brunchy-lunch (Yes, I had more. It was delicious)

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Post-run on Sunday I decided to refuel with, well, dessert. Chocolate-pumpkin avocado mousse and a pumpkin scone (twas a mix)

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A new recipe in the works for Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Blondies! They were allllmost there! Just need more sweet, but were awesome topped with pumpkin butter!

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Okay you caught me, I do eat savory food (sometimes) and veggies. Like this (weekly) salad from Dos Coyotes! A rainbow of fresh, local veggies atop beans and corn tortillas plus cranberry salsa. The staff knows our order by heart. Oops 😉

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And this one night when I got really ambitious and made a homecooked meal! We’ve been vegan almost 3 years and this is the first time we’ve made the stereotypical lentil loaf haha! I bumped it up by adding some good spices, quinoa, carrot, fennel, celery and mushrooms, and made 2 batches so 1 is in the freezer for our Thanksliving celebration! Also, mashed potatoes with chickpea gravy and veggies. Comfort food on rainy days at its finest!

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And potatoes. Always

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Ever dipped kabocha in apple butter? Please, please do. Heaven.

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Look! I even had a wheagrass shot at work!

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…and leftover chocolate cake from a potluck for when I got home. #balance 😉 

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This was OK, but not my fav flavors for chocolate. I’m gonna bake with it instead hehehe

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And last but not least, Pumpkin Pie. My mom is trialing our Thanksliving spread, so we currently have an awesome pie in our fridge (love you so much mom!). Buuut I don’t have a pic, so you get the recipe for last year’s Un-Pumpkin pie!

Why do I keep calling it Thanksliving?

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Because we are giving thanks for all life this holiday. On saturday we are going to Farm Sanctuary to celebrate the turkeys that lived and give them a feast of their own! So excited!

ALSO! My laptop died on me (whomp whomp) So I am transfered to my desktop for now, meaning my race recap is further pushed back die to photo storage (sorry). Plus I missed the date to pick winners for my AMAZING GRASS GIVEAWAY, so I am extending it to this weekend! YAY more chances to enter!! Good luck!!

Sweet or Savory??

Living Intentions Review

A little while ago, Living Intentions sent me a few of their amazing raw goodies to review!!

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I received a sample of their Sprouted Flour, Sprouted brownie mix, and two flavors of their raw Gone Nuts!

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Of course, I broke into the nuts within minutes of opening the package and taking pictures. Oops.

Okay, not oops. Mmmmmmmm…..

These were gone in no time.

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Ingredients: Organic Raw Cashews, Organic Clear Agave Nectar, Sprouted Almonds (pesticide free), Organic Coconut, Organic Cacao Nibs, Organic Cacao Butter, Himalayan Crystal Salt, Organic Vanilla Extract and Organic Mesquite Pod Meal.

The white chocolate nuts were delicious, on their own tasting very coconutty and sweet with a hint of salt, and very much like white chocolate when I put some on top of my breakfast oats:) I am usually not a white chocolate fan -its very sweet, but these were divine!

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I liked the clusters of cacao even better!

Ingredients: Sprouted Almonds (pesticide free), Organic Raisins, Organic Coconut Palm Sugar, Organic Blueberries, Organic Coconut, Organic Raw Cacao, Organic Clear Agave Nectar, Organic Unfiltered Olive Oil, Organic Vanilla Extract and Himalayan Crystal Salt.

A smooth dark chocolate coating held together clusters of almonds and dried fruit -it was nutty and fruity and sweet and dark and delicious! My only complaint was the raisins-simply because I’m not a raisin fan though haha!

I usually ‘hide’ my ‘special’ foods (i.e. these nuts) from my stepdad so that I get them all to myself….buutttt I found out after getting these that he knows where my hiding place is. AKA its a good thing I tried them first! Haha  I will definitely be trying more of their Gone Nuts! line!

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Next up were the sprouted flours- which I was super excited about!! I decided to try each of them in both a cooked and a raw recipe, to see how they turned out!!

For the raw cacao brownie cake mix, I made (surprise) raw brownies

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Following the recipe on the back of their package pretty closely

and baked brownies

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Using 1 cup of mix, 1 small avocado, 1 banana, 1/2 T vanilla and a bit of baking powder. They came out super moist but I have to say the batter was better than the finished product (isn’t that ALWAYS the case? 😉 )

Both brownies were very rich and chocolatey, however the mix does have a strong maca aftertaste in both desserts, which took away a bit from the chocolate in my opinion. Other than that I did enjoy the brownies! And they have such better, higher quality ingredients than almost any other brownie mix I’ve seen! Low sugar too!

Ingredients: The Original Sprouted Super Flour (Organic Sprouted Buckwheat, Sprouted Almonds (pesticide free), Organic Mesquite Pod Powder, Micro-Fine White Chia Powder and Agave Inulin), Organic Cacao, Organic Coconut Palm Sugar, Organic Raw Sun-Dried Cane Juice Crystals, Organic Coconut Flour, Organic Coconut, Raw Brown Rice Bran & Germ, Organic Maca Powder and Himalayan Crystal Salt.

And last but most certainly not least, was my favorite product of the package! The raw Super Flour!

Ingredients: Sprouted Organic Buckwheat Flour, Sprouted Almond Meal (pesticide free), Organic Mesquite Pod Powder, Micro-Fine White Chia Seed Powder, and Organic Agave Inulin.

Made out of sprouted grains and super foods-it was slightly sweet and delicious -I could eat it by the spoonful.

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First I made a batch of almond-peach pancakes, and they were divine! The super flour had a wonderful taste and texture-the almond meal in the flour gave these pancakes a ‘crunch’ , taking pancakes to a whole new level!!
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I followed the recipe on the back of the package for their raw ‘oatmeal’ cookies, using almonds instead of walnuts and adding some ginger, then I dehydrated these for a few hours. Oh my goodness were these amazing! They tasted like actual oatmeal cookies, but with the ginger they also tasted like gingersnaps! I would so make these again!
And finally, I made up my own recipe
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For (almost) raw cookie dough truffles -but you’ll have to wait for another post for the recipe!!! 😉 Can I just say these were awesome though?
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In all, I loved my samples from Living Intentions -even the packaging! Basically my mantra when cooking. I can’t wait to try out more products from this amazing company! Thanks Living Intentions!
And guess what? You can too!! Through the end of August Living Intentions is offering $5 off purchaces of $30 or more with the coupon code LIVINGAUG13 . Visit shop.livingintentions.com to take advantage of this awesome opportunity! Hurry, and try the Super Flour so you can make the truffles -coming soon 🙂

Recipe ReDeux: (Not So) Chunky Monkey Jars

I just signed up to be a member of Recipe ReDeux, and when I got the email I found out that I had 3 days before the first link up. AHHH!!! So exciting but AHHH!!

This months theme was “Raising the Bar on Food in a Jar”, and immediately my mind started inventing what I could make. I didn’t want to go the usual OIAJ route (I know I know. Its hardly normal to the “real world” to eat breakfast out of a peanut butter jar. But its too usual for me). I wanted to make something awesome for my first recipe redeux. Also, I wanted to bake (baking therapy is important to me). And I wanted chocolate pudding. So my thought process went a little like this:

Thinking. Thinking. Hmmm I really like the PB-Chocolate-Banana combo -chunky monkey is it?…Now turn that into a jar recipe…..barrel of monkeys…Chunkey Monkey Barrels…Chunky Monkey Jars!

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Well, this is chunky monkey’s health conscious cousin. You know, the one who buys health magazines and owns a gym membership.

She’s not so chunky, but every bit as delicious-if not more so. She is also infinitely more well-put together, and prepared and balanced. She is ready for breakfast or dessert. Or both.

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A dense peanut butter banana muffin, a thick and rich chocolate mousse, and a sweet and sticky peanut butter mousse all layered together with fresh banana slices.

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Decadent enough for dessert, yet healthy and balanced enough for breakfast!

Chunky Monkey Jars

serves 4

For the banana bread layer:

  • 2/3 C whole spelt flour
  • 3 T. peanut flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1-1/2 super ripe, medium bananas
  • 1/2 T. nut butter
  • 1/4 C. nondairy milk + 1/2 tsp vinegar
  • 1 T. raw sugar
  • 3 T. stevia baking blend (or more sugar)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

Pre-heat oven to 325. Lightly grease the insides of four small (8-10 oz) jars. In a medium sized bowl, mix the flours, baking soda and powder, and salt together. In a small bowl, mash the bananas then add the rest of the liquid ingredients. Mix until well combined. Add liquid to dry ingredients, and mix until just combined. Scoop batter evenly into the jars (about 1/4 C per), place jars on a cookie sheet, and bake for 20-25 minutes (toothpick test!) Allow jars to cool COMPLETELY before filling with mousses (can put in fridge once they are cool to the touch)

For Chocolate Mousse

  • 1 ripe avocado
  • 3 medjool dates
  • 2/3 c nondairy milk
  • 1/2 T. vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp instant espresso powder (optional)
  • dash salt
  • 1/4 C. dark cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp stevia extract

Place all ingredients in a high powered blender and blend until smooth. Keep in fridge until ready to use!

For Peanut Butter Mousse

  • 1 C. cooked chickpeas
  • 6 oz (1/2 package) silken tofu
  • 2-3 heaping TB Peanut Butter (or almond, sunbutter)
  • 1/2 C. peanut flour/PB2
  • 1 date
  • 1/2 a ripe banana
  • dash salt
  • 3/4-1 tsp stevia extract
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla or peanut butter extract

Place all ingredients in a high powered blender until smooth. If it is too thick, add some nondairy milk. Too thin, add more nut butter, peanut flour, or a pinch of xanthan gum. Keep in fridge until ready to use!

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For assembly! Once the jars and muffins are completely cool, top muffins with a layer of one flavor of mousse, then a few banana slices (if you wish), and top it off with the other flavor of mousse (There may be extra of the peanut butter mousse)! Serve right away, or put a lid on it and keep it in the fridge for later!

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These are awesome because they are perfectly portioned for a quick breakfast or a healthy dessert, and can be made a day or two in advance! Also, it comes in a jar, which as everyone knows, means they taste better than your average, un jarred parfait. For bigger portions (maybe more large-meal sized??) split into two or three peanut butter jar sized jars!

Good thing this makes four! I made these for my family of three for dessert, and may or may not have finished the last one the next morning for breakfast 😉 I’m just a crazy monkey I guess!!

A Cake To Remember

Forgive me lovelies, for I have slacked.

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I haven’t posted, I haven’t replied to your comments, I haven’t read your blogs -shoot I haven’t even turned my computer on since Sunday!

I even made this a whole week ago, and didn’t even tell you about it (unless you follow me on instagram)

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But I had a legitimate reason. Senior year started in full throttle. Up at 5:40, school at 7:45, home at 3:00, and homework until 11.  I haven’t even had time for a run, movies, or even baking! And you know, baking is incredibly therapeutic for me.

So I decided to come back with a recipe, for a mind-blowingly delicious cake. I hope you’ll forgive me?

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Making this cake, last week, was absolute bliss. The measuring and mixing, the baking and blending.

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The scent of warm chocolate swirling through the air as the cake cooled.

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Then the assembly.

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When I can just lose myself in the repeated swirls of frosting, taking photos between each step

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looking for new, artistic angles to capture my edible medium.

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Of course, I felt incredibly hipster too, creating an incredible vegan cake while wearing my cute, thrifted high-waisted shorts, waiting to go shopping at the consignment store and planning my activist club.

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But the big plans were at the back of my mind, as I decorated this beautiful cake, my creation, in the soft summer sunlight. It was peaceful.

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And then came time to cut the cake. My best friend came over, and we sliced beautiful slices, laughing about how this cake was the ultimate ‘cravings cake’ (In case you missed it, last week all I wanted was cookie dough. And chocolate)

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We sat down with our cake, watched a girly movie, and laughed our last summer weekend away.

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This cake, THIS CAKE.

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Thin yet fluffy, light and moist, perfectly chocolate cake layers

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Filled with a sweet, buttery, incredible cookie dough filling.

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And finished off with a silky chocolate frosting.

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Double Chocolate Cookie Dough Cake (or, ultimate cravings cake. Or, therapist cake)

serves 10

For the Cake:

  • 1 1/2 C. Whole Spelt Flour
  • 1/2 C. Cocoa Powder
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2/3 C. maple syrup
  • 1/2 C. unsweetened applesauce
  • 1 T. white or rice vinegar
  • 2-3 tsp instant espresso powder
  • 1/2 T. vanilla extract
  • 3/4 C. water
  • 3 T. almond milk (or use iced almond milk coffee 😉 )

Preheat oven to 350. Grease two 9-inch circular cake pans. In a medium bowl, mix flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder and salt. In a large bowl, mix together remaining (liquid) ingredients well. Add flour mixture to liquid mixture in 2-3 batches, mixing well each time, until your cake batter is smooth. Pour evenly into the two pans (they will be thin in 2 pans, this is on purpose) and bake 18-24 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean. Wait 15 minutes before inverting onto a cooling rack. Make sure cake is completely cooled before frosting

For the Cookie Dough Filling:

  • 2 cans of garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed.
  • 1/2 C. dates
  • 1/3 C. almond milk
  • 3-4 T. nut butter of choice
  • 1.5 T. vanilla extract
  • 1 T. baking soda
  • 1 T. baking powder
  • dash salt
  • 2 T. coconut flour (Optional)
  • Stevia to taste (start with 1 tsp and increase as needed)
  • 3-4 T. ground flax
  • 1/3 C. oats
  • 1/4-1/3 C. chocolate chips (chopped smaller if you wish)

Soften your dates by pitting them and putting them in a mug, then cover them with the almond milk and microwave them for about 40 seconds. In a food processor, add beans through stevia and blend well until smooth. Add flax, process, and adjust your sweetness and saltiness until the flavors suit you (I put a lot of vanilla, baking soda/powder, and sweetness in because those are the main flavors of cookie dough and I like them to be prominent). Once you find your balance, pulse in the oats, then the chocolate chips. Keep in fridge until you are ready to ‘frost’. Don’t worry-this makes extra on purpose 😉

For the Frosting/Pudding

  • 3/4 of a large ripe avocado (or 1 whole small)
  • 1 ripe banana
  • 1/4 C. pitted dates
  • 1 C. canned pumpkin (or cooked sweet potatoes/squash)
  • 1 T. vanilla
  • 1 C. almond milk
  • 1/4 C. peanut flour or PB2
  • 2/3 C. dark cocoa powder
  • 2 tsp instant espresso powder
  • 1 tsp stevia (additional to taste)
  • dash salt
  • 1/2 T. xanthan gum
  • 1 tsp arrowroot powder/cornstarch

Put all ingredients in a high speed blender until very smooth, adjust to taste, and keep in freezer or fridge to set. Make sure this is completely cool before frosting cake (sometimes the blender heats it up while blending).  I know this seems like a lot of ingredients, but trust me its delicious and really easy!

To assemble cake: Place one cake layer on a flat surface, spread a thick layer of cookie dough filling on top, and top with the second cake. Press it down flat and use a knife/spreader along the edge to make sure the sides and cookie dough are smooth and even. Spread the frosting on top. If you want to make the truffles on top, add a few more oats/ tbls of flour to leftover cookie dough filling and roll into small balls for decorating 🙂

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Decadent enough to be my next birthday cake, yet wholesome enough for breakfast.

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Or lunch, which I actually did.

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One of the biggest things I am going to miss about summer is the endless free time to do whatever I wish, just because. And for the last weekend of summer, I was able to spend a few hours of bliss.

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Pure, sweet bliss.

This cake recipe has been submitted to

the veggie nook

 

because its a cake, but its actually good for you 😉

MIM(last summer)M

Le sigh….today marks the beginning of my last week of summer vacation…made even worse by the fact that this is my last summer vacation as a child in the public school system. Yep. 7 more days until I am a senior -where did the time go?!? Oh well, at least this weekend was a really good one!! (Also go visit Katie to see the marvelousness of blogworld!!)

I’ve been making the most of my last few lazy mornings, lounging in jammies with a large mug of hot drink and blog reading…photo-204Granted its still at 8 in the morning (early for the average teenager, but I am not the average teenager. I wake up at 7:15 onmyown)On the morning that this was taken, I discovered a new favorite blog…The Oatmeal Artist   .I swear, even though I’ve been on a smoothie bowl kick lately due to the lovely heat of Sacramento summers, the second it cools down I am making every single one of her recipes!photo-205Unfortunately I also have been forced to actually write the first essay I’ve written since, oh, May. Ha I’m meeting up with a friend today to finish our summer homework together.photo-207But back to the marvelous! I am finally getting my driving hours in! On Friday my daddy picked me up and I drove 2 hours north for lunch, then another hour up to a pretty dam, then back home -longest drive of my life!! But I didn’t kill anybody! Whoo!!!! This picture is just because I find it extremely humorous how small I am. The seat has to go all the way forward and up and upright for me to drive, and I often forget to put it back afterwards. AKA nobody can sit (slash get in the car) there after me 🙂photo-206Marvelous is finally finding heart shaped sunglasses!!! I’ve been on the search for them for months, and I finally found them -as the last, super discounted pair at Delia’s for $3!photo-208Also marvelous? Coming home to big packages addressed to me!! Something is in store for you guys soon!!!photo-213Chocolate cake, just because!! Well, my older sister and her boyfriend are doing the 21-day vegan kickstart, and 2 weeks in they miss dessert. So we had them over for lunch and a baking day (Since I am the head baker in the family, I gladly took Brie under my wing 😉 ) Its funny, after being vegan for so long the little tricks I take for granted, such as a flax egg or avocado mousse, that are simply magic to a new vegan! Afterwards we watched Vegucated with them, and then discussed human rights and equality etc. Its funny because we grew up in a very conservative family, yet all 3 of us kids are becoming more liberal and activist-y. Its fun! hahaphoto-211Speaking of activism, I forced persuaded my mom to buy reusable straws and they came!! We got some normal, and some with little spoons on the end! I love them!! I also went clothes shopping at a consignment store and today we are going to Target and I’m planning on getting another trash bin for compost 🙂 I’ve been in save-the-earth mode since YEA Camp haha! On a slightly related note, yard sales rule. I got a table, pretty bowl, and ice cream dish for $1.25!photo-210This stuff. Have you tried this? Its bomb.com !! Haha but really, it tastes awesome, plus its not chock full of sugar and twenty thousand ingredients like most iced coffees, its literally espresso, almond milk (almonds, water), and sugar, and the stats are not bad -like 10 grams of sugar which is no more than you would find in most sweetened plant milks! I made ice cream with it.photo-212Yesterday was raw-some (Bahaha I’m punny…) We went to a Sac vegan chef challenge planning meeting at Maria‘s house and she made some raw wraps and raw brownies (and I also ate too much watermelon…again) while we mapped this year’s challenge out (its gonna be good this year!!), then we all went to a raw restaurant called The Green Boheme for dinner for Jed’s (team veg captain) birthday – my mom and I shared the tortilla soup and raw enchiladas -delishphoto-209The birthday boy and his raw ice cream sandwich (with a not raw candle 😉 ) Happy Birthday Jed!!So that was my weekend, and now I’m off to make the most of my last week of summer vacation as a child…I know I’m being dramatic but I am a dramatic person haha!!
And don’t forget to enter the Journey Bar Giveaway!!!!!!!! You have 2 more days!!!!!!

Chocolate Cherry Matcha Shake

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So you may remember how I mentioned that we are in the middle of a heat wave.

I have hardly left the house for the past couple of days, instead we have been cleaning.

You can only take so much cleaning.

We (meaning my mother and I) needed an afternoon pick me up -something cold and energizing…

My mom wanted matcha. I wanted chocolate (I’ve been in an Eat ALL the chocolate!!! mood lately)

But would chocolate and green tea be good together????

We debated for a good 5 minutes -chocolate matcha or peach matcha? Chocolate or peach? Peach or chocolate?

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We went with chocolate.

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Life is rough.

Chocolate Cherry Matcha Shake

serves 2

  • 1/2 cup Dark Chocolate almond milk, frozen (about 6 ice cubes)*
  • 1 C. frozen dark sweet cherries
  • 1-1 1/2 C. non dairy milk
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 T. dark cocoa powder (or 3 T. regular)
  • 1 1/2 T. Matcha green tea powder
  • 1/4 – 1/2 tsp stevia, or other sweetener (to taste)

Blend everything up!! Thats it:)

*We have taken to keeping a stash of almond milk in ice cube trays in the freezer for creamier smoothies and the like:), and just so happened to have a bit of chocolate almond milk in the freezer. If you don’t have the chocolate almond milk, just add a bit more cocoa powder and sweet 🙂

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This was perfect! Cool, creamy, and refreshing, the dark, rich chocolate balanced perfectly with the grassy freshness of the matcha, plus a hint of fruity sweetness from the cherries!

A little bit of heaven in a glass

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Now off to tackle the dusting…

MIMM: Hot Hot Hot!!!

Happy Monday!!!First of all, I want to give a BIG HUGE CONGRATS to Katie, the lovely diva who hosts this marvelous party, and her beautiful baby boy, Rocco. What a wonderful gift to be given! I wish the whole family the best! 😀This past weekend has been a marvelous one!!With one exception…photo-2Heat. Wave. uuuuggghhhhh. It was all weird, cold and rainy exactly one week ago, and by Wednesday the temperatures were scorching again! This is day 4 of 105+  heat, and its funny because we can’t wait for 9pm, when it reaches a nice, cool 90 haha!photo-180Of course, warm evenings are made all the more enjoyable when outside, and we finally got lights up on our gazebo!! Its so nice to just relax and stare at the lights like a moth enjoy the pretty lights!!photo-177Luckily it doesn’t start heating up until about 9 am, so its finally gotten me back in the habit of early morning runs! Wake up, grab a nut butter stuffed date and off I go! There is no better time to run than first thing in the morning, the air is still (relatively) crisp, scented with dew and sprinklers, and the only sounds are the birds singing, and your feet hitting the pavement in tune with the earth’s heartbeat (like that? Can I be a poet like you now TGITO?? 😉 )photo-3Basically. Otherwise its too hot.photo-172And when I come back from the early morning runs, I have time (and motivation) to make fancier breakfasts!! This morning I made my mom and I blueberry cornmeal pancakes topped with fresh farmers market peaches! So good!Speaking of running, didn’t I ever tell you guys???photo-179I am officially signed up to run my first ever Half Marathon this October!! Whoo!! I’m sooo excited!! I’ve been wanting to run a half before I graduate basically since I discovered I actually liked running freshman year, and its finally happening! This is such a great testimonial to myself too, that I am finally in a place where I can run and be stronger, not weaker, from it. Its a symbol of the test I’ve had in high school, and that I can conquer anything I put my mind to. I am stronger than I gave myself credit for for so long, and I can tackle mountains (well, hills, but San Fransisco is crazy hilly so if you add them up, its a mountain. kapeesh?)photo-178Also Marvelous are Starbucks dates….with myself. But hey, if it motivates me to do my summer reading (I’d so much rather read books of my own choosing…). I heard from Amanda that if you order Starbucks cappuccinos dry, you get them perfectly foamy (my favorite part). She was right! Soy cappuccino, decaf and dry-I drank the coffee part and then added a dash of cinnamon to my cup of foam. Lets just say that I was that weirdo in the corner reading and eating foam with a coffee stirrer. #foamobsession #sorrynotsorry 😉photo-174Marvelous still are farmers market hauls -especially at the end of the day so everything is even cheaper! We got that gigantic bag of peaches for only $2, and they are super ripe-almost jam like. I have to cook with them before they go bad!! We also found a beautiful head of crisp romaine, chinese spinach (its so pretty! Purple and green!), a pomegranate balsamic grill sauce, and fresh, handmade vegan ravioli! I’ve never had fresh pasta so I’m excited.photo-173A marvelous, refreshing,  and simple salad for dinner (squash on the side) of Farmers Market romaine and tomatoes, plus cucumber, celery, red onion, avocado, tempeh, chickpeas, and a honey mustard dressing and lemon pepper (post photo). I’ve never had a crisper salad than one fresh from the farmers market that morning!photo-176And perhaps most marvelous of all? Its girls week! My stepdad is with his dad and cousin in Washington state this week, visiting museums and baseball parks, so my mom and I have had the house to ourself. Its officially Chocolate and Chickflicks week around here! Perfect for my newfound obsession with chocolate avocado mousse and Friends reruns. So with cool morning runs filled with deep thoughts, farmers market runs, and daily chocolate, life could not get any marvelous-er 😉Have you been caught in a heatwave this week?Whats your marvelous today?

WIAW!!

AAHHH! Its my 100th post!!! this is cool! I have a recipe coming for you soon 🙂

In other news happy Wednesday!!

 

Lets get to the eats!

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Vanilla cinnamon oats topped with strawberries and almonds

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Tropical smoothie (froz mango, bloobs, tropical VEGA, spinach) topped with granola

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Mixed banana berry smoothie topped with strawberry raspberry granola. These are my new favorite thing after eating an acai bowl almost every stinkin day in Southern California

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Of course, I could never let a perfectly good OIAJ opportunity go to waste! Peach, apple, blueberry oats with (homemade) almond butter

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My family had a spring roll bar for lunch the other day! Carrots, beets, cucumber and local 5 spice tofu. I had more than this, don’t worry 🙂 It was just a pretty picture! And delicious in peanut sauce.

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Uhh, duh. Kabocha…What were you expecting? 😉

 

 

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On Fathers day I made a picnic for my dad and step siblings! I brought the fixins for sun butter and jelly sandwiches, grapes, carrot sticks, and freshly made chocolate chip cookies using this recipe. They were just slightly under baked and perfect 🙂

 

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Please, please tell me you’ve tried dipping grapes in nut butter. Its delicious and tastes like straight up PB&J. Especially if its peanut butter and those really dark, sweet purple grapes. Heaven. Ignore the nasty napkin 😉

 

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We had a vegan BBQ/Pot luck the other day! An assortment of spanish rice, quinoa salad, pasta salad, fruit and fresh veganic veggies, and a veggie dog. I think I am officially past the whole “transition foods” stage of veganism, because I didn’t really like the veggie dog. Any of that fake stuff-fake meat, fake cheese, etc just doesn’t appeal to me. I’d rather eat real food, thats not trying to be something its not. Superficial vegan food 😉

 

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Soy ice cream on the other hand, thats perfectly fine with me 🙂 Especially with brownies and peanut butter cookie dough bites!

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Very rarely does a container of figs actually make it home. Everytime we buy them, my mom and I go through the whole display to find the most ripe ones, make our own little basket full, and eat them all on the car ride home. Its like a tradition 😉 Also this fig was huge. I had to show you guys.

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Have you ever heard of a Santa Clause Melon? Its like a cross between cantaloupe and honeydew, and it looks like a green football on the outside. Anyway, I found it at WF and its delicious. I had it on a salad with Braggs Braggberry dressing (blueberry, raspberry, acai, gogi, grape, and ACV. Totes recreating it)


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Our weather was super weird a few days ago, and it went from 90’s to 60’s and raining in 2 days. Now its in the 90’s again and will be 106 on Monday. Ouch. Anyway, I just so happened to be sick on the rainy day, so I spent all day on the couch reading and ate a mug of split pea soup for lunch. If only I hadn’t been sick I would have been so cozy!


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Later that afternoon I decided I didn’t like being sick. I now believe in the healing powers of rest and green smoothies. I made a huge smoothie with santa clause melon, lemon, ginger, celery, cucumber, parsley and power greens lettuce mix. I tell you what, this sick affected my whole family for 3-4 days, and I was only sick for one. All Hail the Smoothie!!!

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Movie snack! Apple, puffins and almonds with warm vanilla milk (almond milk, stevia, and vanilla extract. A slightly healthier version of the vanilla milk I grew up making (read cows milk and spoonful upon heaping spoonful of sugar. Like sickly sweet. I know, great for a 5 year old before bedtime) and like better than hot cocoa!) I had this while watching Warm Bodies, which I highly recommend!!


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Island Portabella burgers with grilled pineapple and baked sweet potato fries on the side. This was delicious 🙂
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And here we have baked japanese sweet potato topped with cheater baked beans and coconut bacon, plus a side salad. How to make cheater baked beans: We followed Happy Herbivore’s recipe but on stovetop, and using kidney beans plus corn. Since we weren’t actually going to bake them, we mashed the beans a bit and that thickened the whole dish up quite nicely! This was really really good!

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And last but not least, a bit of a sneak peak of that recipe I will be sharing shortly!! Doesn’t it look good???

Hehehe:)

Had any weird weather lately?

Whats your latest breakfast obsession?

And sometimes its WIAW

Happy WIAW!!

Looking over some of my recent eats, I’ve come to the conclusion that allthetime sometimes I have some very, well, interesting eats. And sometimes its best not to question them.

Sometimes….

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…you feel like making an actual meal (pasta and veggies with a dairy free cheese sauce, recipe up soon!!)

But sometimes…

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…Its just frozen pizza night (new gluten and dairy free vegan pizza on the shelves, with a few extra veggies for good measure)

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…but you’ll probably make a salad too. (spiralized carrots and candy cane beets with peach vinegar and honey mustard)

Sometimes…

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…you eat a reasonable amount of squash. But more than likely you’ll go back for more and never learn your lesson (cough cough bloated cough cough don’t care)

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…you might also eat large amounts of melon. I didn’t take pictures of the watermelon I had too…

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…or fresh summer fruit in general.

Sometimes…

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…You get a little creative in your breakfasts (nuts instead of nut butter omg.)

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….but often you will go back to your tried and true. (especially if it’s caramel macchiato almond butter)

Sometimes…

photo 1-70…You hate being out of lettuce and therefore out of your lunch salad routine, but instead of being creative you just use frozen spinach instead. and then get a tad annoyed that all of your sauces are on the potato and not the spinach. #thestruggle 😉

Sometimes…

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…you are cleaning up from lunch and have a ‘hmm what would happen if…’ moment resulting in a little BLT* action that is so good you make it again and document it. Aka leftover apple slice + cucumber + coconut bacon is delicious. Even when you are full. This would be a good sandwich. *BLT-Bites, licks and tastes

Sometimes…

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…you get excited because its like Raley’s knew it was your birthday. (I spy banana bread in the near future)

Sometimes…

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…it takes a few tries to make a birthday cake…

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…so you just decide on a DIY strawberry shortcake instead 🙂

Sometimes…

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…your desserts seem well put together (farmers market fresh strawberries with farmers market granola on top of a vanilla cream concoction)

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… and you eat chocolate pudding in an acceptable manner

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…And sometimes its best not to question what you were thinking. (for the record, chocolate, cinnamon cereal, and cantaloupe is actually pretty good. then again, its chocolate, cinnamon, and melon. when aren’t those delicious?)

Sometimes…

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…edible birthday presents are awesome

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….but its the non-edible ones that are the best. ( I named him Stefan 😉 and yes, Stefan is an oven mit. It makes taking cookies out of the oven intense.)

Whats the best birthday present you have ever gotten? 

Any strange concoctions you’ve come up with lately?