Recently, I needed to start a new commute to my campus. Commuting, obviously, is awful. There is nothing worse than realizing after a long day of classes/work that a hectic drive home stands between you and your dinner. As is life. But to make matters worse I have to pass a Krispy Kreme Donut shop twice a day. It’s not like I simply speed by it either. I am constantly stuck at a light with a Krispy Kreme Donut sign seemingly directly in front of me. I’m a big believer in that when a craving hits it must be obeyed but this doesn’t mean that I can afford to stop for a dozen of donuts every day. So here is my healthy alternative. Trust me they are delicious!
Pear Muffins with a Ginger-Walnut Glaze
When I think about fall produce my mind often goes to classics. I usually think of apple orchards and pumpkins growing on long vines. I imagine butternut squash soup making its first appearance after the warm summer weather. Sometimes I forget that fall is also the season for delicious, fresh pears. So in honor of the end of summer and the approach of fall I am whipping up some fresh pear muffins drizzled with a ginger glaze and sprinkled with walnuts.
Chickpeas in a Turmeric and Coconut Milk Sauce
It seems to me as if fall comes earlier and earlier each year. One reason for this could be because I no longer judge the arrival of fall by how soon the leaves begin to change or by how crisp the morning air starts to feel. Instead my newest indicator of fall is when the first pumpkin flavored product hits the stores. This year I saw pumpkin spiced coffees as early as August! We do love our pumpkin. While I don’t eat pumpkin every single day during the autumn months I have to admit it makes a wonderful addition to some common recipes. This is one of those recipes. Plus it’s made in a crock pot which makes making dinner even easier.
I can’t believe we have already reached the end of summer here in the northeast! I look forward to summer all year round and when I feel it winding down I seriously fall into a funk. I always miss the sunshine, miss the warmth, and really miss the summer inspired foods. This year I am going to hold onto to summer for as long as I can. For starters I am still going to cook like it is still summer and nothing says summer like watermelon salad drizzled with a watermelon vinaigrette.
Recently I came across a bottle of dried lavender that I had bought over a year ago and simple forgot about. I think I original bought it because of the amazing smell of the dried lavender and then forgot about in the back of my spice rack. Not many recipes call for lavender but it can make a wonderful addition to baked goods, as demonstrated by these unforgettable cupcakes!
Spicy Moroccan Chickpeas
I have wanted to travel to Morocco for decades, ever since I was first introduced to the flavorful cuisine way back in High School. This past summer I was lucky enough to take a trip there. While I was exploring the colorful marketplace in Marrakesh, an idea came to me that I should purchase an authentic tagine for cooking. Talk about an impulse buy! It sounded wonderful at the time and in my head I formed the argument that a tagine would make a cool and functional souvenir. I did not take into account that a tagine strong enough to survive in a modern oven would be both be big and heavy. Plus Morocco was one of the first stops on a whirlwind trip that included Spain and Portugal. Over the next few weeks the tagine became like a third carry on item. And I was so afraid of breaking or cracking my new tagine before I ever had the chance to make something delicious in it!
So here it is. The tagine that survived trains, buses, and airport security. Every time I look at this it reminds me of a wonderful time in my life as a young traveler and inspires to eat more Moroccan food, which is always a good thing!
Decadent Dark Chocolate Banana and Peanut Butter Bites
These mini bites are a great dessert or snack! They are so easy to make too! I started these on a Sunday morning, threw them in the freezer and finished later that night. The rest of the week I had a healthy, sweet snack waiting for me whenever I walked through the kitchen!
Total Time: 2 hours (total)
Yield: 25 to 30 bites
I wanted to take a moment to thank everyone who has visited/liked my new food blog over the 1st month! Taking the first steps to enter a change of careers and enter into the field of nutrition has been both thrilling and terrifying. This has been my first attempt at blogging and its been a learning experience and I hope to continue to learn and grow. I am so grateful for all the continued support.
I also wanted to thank my wonderful sous chefs/kitchen cleaner uppers. Kitchens everywhere need more furry, little helpers!