I realize that pumpkin is a fall food for many people, but I really enjoy it during every season. This baked pumpkin oatmeal recipe turned out great.
The only modifications I made were a substitution of walnuts for pecans, and I baked it in a 9″x9″ pan. This would be a great dish to make for a breakfast or brunch party!
For our annual Thanksgiving potluck dinner with friends, I brought these mini meatless meatloaves. They were really tasty and filling, and went well with the stuffing and roasted vegetables and other typical Thanksgiving foods.
I used this recipe, but doubled it to make 15 muffin-sized “meatloaves.” I followed the recipe, and for the open-ended parts of the recipe I used one can of black beans and one can of canellini beans, a mixture of zucchini and carrots, and Glutino gluten-free breadcrumbs. I used a food processor rather than chopping everything super-finely and mashing it all together. One major difference from the recipe was that I had to bake these for more than 30 minutes, but I’m not sure if that was due to altitude or imprecise measurements on my part.
These mini meatless meatloaves are great for bringing to a potluck, as they will work for many dietary restrictions, and are easy to serve since they are already in individual portions. I highly recommend labeling them though, because it’s not obvious what kind of food they are when you look at them. I think some people may assume they are a dessert food since they look muffin-like, and it could be an unpleasant surprise to bite into one of these when you’re expecting a sweet muffin flavor. If you’re expecting something savory, though, these are awesome!
I went to Phoenix, Arizona for a few days in October for a conference. First of all, the short flight from Denver to Phoenix was beautiful. As we flew over the mountains in Colorado, I could see Great Sand Dunes National Park.
Shortly after arriving at my hotel, I went for a walk to Nami, a vegan ice cream and pastry shop. The menu was full of enticing options, but I settled on a decadent “fluffernutterin tSoynami.” This amazing vegan and gluten-free treat was made of swirled chocolate and vanilla soy/coconut soft serve ice cream with peanut butter, banana, rice mallow fluff, and toasted marshmallow syrup stirred in.
Throughout most of my conference, I ate at or got take-out from Kaleidoscope Juice. Despite the juice-centric name, this restaurant has all sorts of great food. The protein bowl with tofu, brown rice, and ginger miso dressing was fantastic, and so was the gluten free protein waffle with fruit and coconut whipped cream.
I also enjoyed several kinds of Kaleidoscope’s gluten-free muffins (almond, blueberry, and pumpkin) and one of their smoothies. It was a relief to find a restaurant in downtown Phoenix that worked so well with my dietary restrictions.
Does anyone still have carrots from their garden or CSA? This carrot bread (recipe from Erin McKenna’s cookbook Bread & Butter) was delicious.
Between the carrots and walnuts in this bread, it feels like a pretty nutritious snack!
Here’s a brief summary of the Halloween party we had last year, for a crowd of mostly three-year-olds (with a few older and younger siblings joining as well). We had a number of activities for the kids set up around the house:
- drawing and Halloween stickers
- silly monster craft (see below)
- stick the nose on the monster game (see below)
- spider web game
- monster bowling
And for fun, yet relatively healthy, party snacks we had:
- pumpkin mini muffins
- orange and black fruit (cantaloupe and blackberries)
- cheese slices cut into pumpkin and ghost shapes (see below)
- apple cider
This easy and delicious apple pie was adapted from this recipe.
I made my life easier by using a store-bought gluten-free crust. While pre-heating the oven to 350°F, I mixed up the filling (ingredients listed below) and spread it around the pie crust. Then I mixed up the crumble topping (ingredients listed below) and sprinkled it over the filling. I baked the pie until the crust and crumble began to brown and the apples were tender (about an hour).
- 4 cups apple, sliced thin (I used a mixture of Granny Smith and Gala apples)
- 2 tablespoons maple syrup
- 1/3 cup chopped walnuts
- 1 tablespoon all-purpose gluten-free flour
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 tablespoon Earth Balance
- 1/2 cup rolled oats
- 1/2 cup almond flour
- 8 tablespoons brown sugar
- 1/4 cup oil
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
Yogurt bark is a light, refreshing, and potentially healthy treat (depending on your toppings). I found this idea here, and there are so many ways you can tweak this simple idea for your mood or occasion.
I started with some plain soy yogurt, mixed in agave nectar to taste, and then spread the yogurt on a wax paper-lined baking sheet. Then I topped the yogurt with sliced strawberries, blueberries, and mini chocolate chips, and put the baking sheet in the freezer. After a few hours, the yogurt bark was frozen and ready to be eaten.
The frozen soy yogurt is pretty hard, so you’ll need to allow it to thaw for a few minutes before trying to cut pieces for serving.
It’s always a good time for no-bake cookies and bars, but summer is the season when I appreciate them the most.
I mostly followed this quick and simple recipe, with a minor substitution of replacing the 1/2 cup honey with 1/4 cup agave. I made these bars in a 9″ by 9″ pan. I really enjoyed the little bit of crunch that came from the shredded coconut. One consideration if you’re serving these bars on a hot day: because of the significant coconut oil content, when these bars get warm, they can get goopy and melty.
This lemon ice cream was so easy to make and delicious!
- 1 can full-fat coconut milk
- 1 frozen banana
- 3 tablespoons agave
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
- pinch of salt
- lemon oil to taste
Blenderize the above ingredients, transfer the mixture to your ice cream maker, and serve with sprinkles if you’re feeling fancy!
A chocolate peanut butter smoothie is one of those things that is so delicious, but so hard to look appetizing in a photo.
I had gum graft surgery in November, so for two weeks I was on a mushy-food-only diet while my mouth healed. This smoothie was great for liquid nutrition for those two weeks, but I like it so much that I still have it for breakfast a few times a week. It’s super simple: a banana broken into a few pieces, enough nut milk to cover the banana in the blender, a big glob of peanut butter, and a spoonful of cacao powder. Bonus: if you use a frozen banana, this smoothie tastes like a chocolate peanut butter milkshake!