Berry Crisp [Vegan]

Chelsea and I enjoy berry desserts that can be eaten with ice cream and miss them during winter when fresh berries aren’t in season. This past summer I picked a few different kinds of berries and individually quick froze (IQF) them to use for winter baking and smoothies. This vegan recipe turns out excellently and is quite delicious with normal ice cream or coconut ice cream.

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Recipe (adapted from Skinnyluscious):

Time: 15 mins prep, 45-50 cooking time

Oven temp: 350 F

Ingredients:

Filling:

  • 4 1/2 cups frozen fruit and berries (peaches and blueberries go especially well together)
  • Juice from 1 lemon (or bottled equivalent)
  • 1/4 cup agave
  • 2 tsp cornstarch

Topping:

  • 1 cup rolled oats
  • 1 cup chopped nuts (we like slivered almonds)
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1/2 cup non-dairy butter (we use Earth Balance)
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp salt

Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 F. Use a 8×8 or 9×9 ungreased baking dish.
  2. Mix filling ingredients in a medium bowl and place in baking dish.
  3. Mix topping ingredients and blend with fingers. The topping should be crumbly and have the texture of wet sand.
  4. Sprinkle the topping over the fruit mixture and distribute evenly. 
  5. Bake for 45-50 minutes until fruit is bubbling and topping is browned.
  6. Serve with ice cream and enjoy!

 

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ENJOY!

Red Curry with Chicken

I’ve made this recipe several times in the past few months and each time I think it gets better. As soon as Fall set in, I was in need of some comfort food. This definitely hit the spot.

As a busy college student, weekends are my food prep time for the week. I tend to make large batches of easily reheatable food that I can grab during the week for a quick meal in between classes and homework. Since moving into our apartment, I have started eating less and less meat. Mostly, this is due to convenience because meat takes a lot longer to cook than veggies and beans. This recipe has chicken in it, but could easily be made without as well.

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Red Curry with Chicken (Adapted from Eat, Live, Run)

serves: a lot!

Ingredients:

  • 1-2 lb boneless skinless chicken breast, cut into bite-sized chunks
  • 1 Tbsp coconut oil
  • 3 cups coconut milk, light or regular (this is about 2 cans, but I use 3 to make more)
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 3 Tbsp red curry paste (use more if you add more coconut milk)
  • 1 head bok choy, chopped
  • 2 red bell peppers, thinly sliced
  • 1″ knob ginger, grated
  • 1/2 lb mushrooms, sliced or quartered
  • 2-3 sweet potatoes, peeled and sliced into 1/4″ thick pieces
  • 1 onion, roughly chopped
  • 1 can bamboo shoots
  • 1 can bean sprouts
  • 1 1/2 tsp sugar
  • 2 tsp fish sauce (I didn’t have this, but it turned out ok)
  • juice of 1 lime (or bottled equivalent)
  • 1 tsp salt
  • cooked rice or quinoa for serving (I prefer brown rice)

Directions:

  1. Heat the coconut oil in a large heavy-bottomed pot over medium high heat. When hot, add the ginger and saute until fragrant — 2 minutes.
  2. Add the chicken and sear until not quite cooked through.
  3. Add the curry paste. Stir the ginger, chicken and curry paste together and continue to cook over high heat for another two minutes.
  4. Pour in the coconut milk and water.
  5. Then immediately add the bok choy, bell pepper, onion, bamboo shoots, bean sprouts, mushrooms and sweet potatoes.
  6. Bring curry to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer.
  7. Stir in the fish sauce, salt, lime juice and sugar. Continue simmering over medium/low heat until veggies are soft. This will take about 10 minutes.
  8. Serve over rice or quinoa.

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ENJOY!

Cinnamon Roll Pancakes

This recipe sounds delicious, it really does, and the pictures on Pinterest look awesome! Making these is a whole ‘nother deal. Enter, Pintrosity baking fail.

As our About Us page details, Chelsea bakes and I cook. Baking is difficult for me because I neglect to read the whole recipe ahead of time and generally fail at going in the order intended. Pancakes aren’t really baking, but require a lot of ingredients and have to be measured to taste right and cook well. 

My pintrocity didn’t involve my normal failures at baking but my substitutions didn’t work out very well. Don’t use margarine spread (from the tub) instead of butter. And I even know that you’re not supposed to do that! Oh well.

This is what the pancake is supposed to look like as it’s cooking. It’s pretty and swirly.

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And this is mine. Whoops. You should still make these and follow the recipe exactly. Substitutions aren’t allowed in baking unless it’s an addition of a delicious ingredient in granola.

Recipe adapted from: Recipe Girl and Life in the Lofthouse

For Pancakes:
1 cup all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup milk
1 Tablespoon canola oil
1 large egg, lightly beaten

(OR use a boxed pancake batter)

Cinnamon Filling:
1/2 cup butter, melted
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
1 Tablespoon ground cinnamon

Cream Cheese Glaze:
4 Tablespoons butter
2 ounces cream cheese
1 1/4 cups powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

DIRECTIONS:
Prepare Cinnamon Filling first: In a medium bowl, mix butter, brown sugar and cinnamon. Scoop the filling into a small zip baggie and set aside. (You want this to rest and ‘set up’ while your preparing the other ingredients. Its best if it gets a little thicker, you dont want it liquidy)

Prepare Pancake batter:  In a medium bowl whisk together flour, baking powder and salt. Whisk in milk, oil and egg just until batter is moistened.  (a few small lumps are fine)
OR If using a boxed mix, prepare according to package directions.

Prepare Cream Cheese glaze: In a medium glass or microwave-safe bowl, heat the butter and cream cheese until melted. Whisk together until smooth, then whisk in powdered sugar and vanilla. Set aside.

Heat a large skillet or griddle over medium-low heat. Spray with non-stick cooking spray. Scoop about 1/2 cup of pancake batter onto the skillet. Snip the corner of your cinnamon filling baggie and squeeze a spiral of the filling onto the top of the pancake. When bubbles begin to appear on the surface, flip carefully with a spatula and cook until lightly browned on the underside, 1 to 2 minutes more. Transfer pancake to a baking sheet and keep warm in the oven while you make the rest of the pancakes.

When pancakes are finished, add the cream cheese glaze and eat!

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And almost nailed it! Still, don’t use spreadable margarine from a tub instead of butter!

ENJOY!

Blueberry Yogurt Soufflé

Each summer my family can’t wait until blueberry season arrives. In the Pacific NW, blueberries start ripening towards the beginning to middle of July and don’t stop producing until mid September. There is a U-pick farm down the street from my house, and we pick berries each week in order to have a constant supply.

My mom is a blueberry fanatic and has saved multiple blueberry recipes from the newspaper for many years. This is one of our favorites and we make it at least once (sometimes more) per season. Beware, there are raw eggs in this dessert, but if you know that your eggs are clean and have been kept either refrigerated or on the counter (but not both!) exclusively, you shouldn’t worry too much about salmonella.

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Ingredients:

  • ½ cup sugar, divided
  • 2 envelopes unflavored gelatin
  • ½ cup water
  • 6 eggs, separated
  • 1 carton (8oz) lemon flavored yogurt
  • ½ tsp cream of tartar
  • 1 cup whipping cream
  • 1 pint fresh blueberries

Instructions:

  1. Butter sides and bottom of a 2 ½ quart soufflé dish (I use a deep dish rectangular Pyrex) and sprinkle lightly with sugar.
  2. Stir together ¼ cup sugar and the gelatin in a small sauce pan. Blend in water and let stand for 1 min.
  3. Cook and stir over low heat until gelatin dissolves, about 3 more mins. Remove from heat.
  4. Blend in yogurt and egg yolks. Transfer to a bowl and chill, stirring occasionally, until mixture mounds slightly when dropped from a spoon. This takes about 25-30 min!
  5. Using a mixer (I use a Kitchen Aid stand mixer) beat egg whites and cream of tartar at high speed until foamy. Add remaining sugar 1 Tbs at a time, beating consistently until sugar is dissolved and whites are glossy and stand in stiff peaks.
  6. In a separate bowl, beat whipping cream until it stands in stiff peaks.
  7. Gently, but thoroughly, fold yolk mixture and whipped cream into egg whites. Fold in blueberries, reserving a few for garnish. Pour folded mixture into prepared dish and refrigerate until completely set.
  8. This dish is best served the next morning after chilling overnight.

Notes: Lemon yogurt is increasingly hard to find in the grocery store these days, so lime yogurt can be substituted. Add a tsp of lemon juice to your water in step 2 to get the lemony flavor though.

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Review: Forgiven by Rebecca Brooke

Source: Amazon.com
My rating: 4 out of 5 stars
Introductory synopsis via Amazon.com:
What happens when one moment changes the course of your entire life? Do you sit back and accept it, or fight to live the life you choose? Caleb Jacobs has a past that has haunted him for two years. Knowing he can never forgive himself for the events that led to his departure, Caleb chooses to live a quiet life—concentrating on school, sports, and shots. But when he is paired with Angie for a history project he realizes that no matter how much you try to hide from your past, one way or another it will find you.
Angelina Powers knows what she wants from life. Growing up with only an alcoholic father for company, Angie learned early on in life that you can only count on yourself. But that doesn’t stop her wishing for her white knight. She’s confident, happy and focused…until she meets Caleb. So how will she feel when her potential white knight turns out to be more of a black shadow?

Me: I randomly picked this book up while I was browsing for something to read over the long holiday weekend and can’t say enough about it. This is a very sweet, new adult romance, with a lot more depth than I started out looking for in a lazy read. Honestly though, I couldn’t seem put it down after getting a glimpse into the these two characters. Angelina and Caleb both have dark pasts that they are reluctant to reveal to each other. Taking place in a college setting, this romance weaves around the reluctance that these two people have to enter a relationship with their baggage, despite their obvious attraction. I liked how both characters were well developed without ruining any of the mystery to the story. I also loved their strong  and stubborn personalities. It was a nice change of pace from the timid and shy heroes and heroines I’ve seen lately.

The pace never slowed in this book and I ended up finishing it in one sitting while I was curled up on the couch. In addition to Angelina and Caleb, the supporting characters in this novel we’re excellent and added a lot to the plot. I especially loved Angelina’s friend Emily’s “spitfire” personality as it contrasted well with the two main characters personas, who were much more reserved with their thoughts at times. I also noted that this is the first book of the Rebecca Brooke’s Forgiven Series and I’m really excited for the next installment. I’m hoping the next novel focuses on Caleb’s fried Josh who appeared to be running from a troubled past that was hinted at, but not revealed in this novel.

This book stayed true to its title as the characters learn to forgive themselves and those in their past.  Overall I thought Forgiven was an fantastic novel and dealt with some very tough issues very elegantly. I would definitely get your hands on this one if your looking for a great romance!

Cobbler

Cobbler is an awesome, easy summer dessert that perfectly compliments many meals. It is easy to customize to your personal taste and can be made with any type of fruit. I enjoy eating fresh berry cobbler the most and it is even better served with a scoop of ice cream on top.

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Oven Temp: 425°F

Cook Time: 25-30mins

Cobbler Topping:

  • 1 ½ cups flour
  • 3 tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 4 ½ Tbs butter, melted
  • 3-4 Tbs sugar
  • 1/3-1/2 cup milk

Cobbler Filling:

  • Blueberries, mixed berries, peaches, apples or any other fruit. Addition of sugar is recommended for tart fillings.

Mix flour, salt, baking powder. Add melted butter and mix. Slowly add milk until dough is a softer consistency than biscuit dough. Fill bottom of a 9×13 baking dish (or any dish similar in size) with fruit of your choice to about 1” deep. Mixing varieties gives good flavor. Take the dough in little handfuls and pat it down on top of the fruit to “cobble” it together. Sprinkle the top with a little extra sugar and cook for 25-30mins until delicately browned on top and fruit is cooked through.

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Enjoy!