Vegan, Gluten Free, Soy Free, and Sugar Free Blackberry Almond CobblerRead More
Well hello again! As I mentioned in my last post, I decided to take a step back from consistent blogging, but would update occasionally with really good recipes and other exciting news! So here I am, about to share both!
The first bit of exciting news is that I have partnered with Airbnb to create a Vegan Cheese Tasting and Making Workshop. I'm super excited about this because 1.) Airbnb Trips (Experiences) is a new program that was just launched in Portland and I'm so grateful to be a part of it, and 2.) I love teaching people about the various ways to create delicious vegan meals using all natural whole foods. So if you're planning a trip to Portland in the near future, check out my workshop calendar to see if a class will be offered while you're here!
The second bit of exciting news (and definitely the most important!) is the birth of my son, Bennett! He came into this world on April 27 weighing 8 pounds, 9 ounces...phew! He's chunky, healthy, snuggly, and just perfect! We will definitely be busy as we adjust to having two kiddos, but we feel so blessed and thankful to have two healthy vegan children.
And lastly...this granola recipe! I made this about five times in the last couple weeks of my pregnancy, so that should tell you how easy it is to make (and how quickly it gets eaten!)! Just picture me hobbling around my kitchen, trying not to bump my belly into everything...yep, I'm glad I'm no longer 40+ weeks pregnant! Anyways, what I love about this granola is that it can easily be adapted depending on the ingredients you have in your pantry, or the flavors that you are craving, or the season and time of year. Feel free to add some spices (cinnamon, cloves, ginger, etc.) or go with a more indulgent and rich flavor with the peanut butter (this was my favorite!).
And now that I've shared the latest, I'm going to go soak up some more baby snuggles.
I have broken my silence to bring to you this rich, silky, sinful vegan peanut butter chocolate pie. I first introduced this pie to my husband a few months after we started dating, right around Valentines Day. I guess I wanted to impress him or something...boy how things have changed!!
Back then we weren't vegan, and neither was this pie. Far from it, actually! So after some adaptations and substitutions, this pie has been reborn into a delicious vegan pie that is arguably better than the original version!
Usually people designate certain recipes for certain times of year, associating them with holidays or annual celebrations. I definitely associate this recipe with Valentines Day, which is why I have waited until now to share it with you! I think I have that association partially because of the time I made it for my husband for Valentines Day that year, but also because it is the perfect pick-me-up pie. What does that even mean!? You see, I spent a great part of my life living in the tundra that is Western New York, where most years winter started around Halloween and didn't end until early-mid April. That is a long time to be cold. The beginning of winter isn't so bad because you had the holidays to look forward to and everyone is cheerful and happy to see snow again and spend time with friends and family despite the frigid temperatures. But then January hit and people grew tired of it, and then February hit (usually bringing a major snow storm with it) and many days I just wanted to give up. Or flee to Hawaii. To me, February always sucked. It was dark, ridiculously cold, and just blah. My cabin fever and seasonal depression started to set in big time, and all I craved were warm days and sunshine.
Making this pie, only to be devoured by me and only me (ok, maybe I shared a little!), was just the kick in the butt I needed to get through the next few weeks of winter. And then I felt obligated to hit the gym of course! It sounds kind of sad and slightly pathetic when I write it down, but its the truth and I can sense that many people around me are ready for warmer air and blooming flowers right about now. If you can relate, I urge you to make this pie, cut yourself a huge slice, and know that Spring is coming!
Well hello again! It has been a long time since I've had the chance to sit down and write a blog post. Many apologies for that! But thank you and welcome to my new subscribers who have signed up for blog updates in my absence.
To say the last 3 months have been busy would be an understatement. Those who know me well know that when I take on one major life change, I tend to take them ALL on at once. So since late August, I found out I'll be having another baby (due April 2017!), moved to a new house, renovated that new house to include a new kitchen, became a board member for a great local non-profit called NW Veg, and started a second (and temporary) Airbnb, with a few trips out of State mixed in there. Phew! I've finally had time to settle down....just in time for the craziness of the holidays to begin!
And then there was the election results, which have come as a huge shock to myself and my family. I (we) have spent the last couple weeks trying to process what has happened and what it means for our future. I don't want to get political here, but I bring up the election because it has influenced a decision I have made in the last week. I've decided to take a step back from recipe creation to use my free time to volunteer with organizations that could use my help in the wake of recent events. As much as I love sharing the goodies that come out of my kitchen with you, its time for me to focus my energy elsewhere for the time being. I will still be posting new recipes from time to time, but it definitely won't be as frequently as it was in the past.
But in happier news, I'm excited to share a photo of my new vegan kitchen, along with this post-Thanksgiving recipe. The Thanksgiving Leftover Tart!! This tart was just incredible, flavorful, and so filling. I couldn't think of a better way to use up your leftover Thanksgiving side dishes! You may purposefully want to save some leftovers just to make this!
I'd also like to wish the American followers a wonderful Thanksgiving filled with happiness, love, and kindness.
This past weekend, I took a trip to the Olympic National Forest in Northern Washington State. Oh my gosh, was it beautiful. We hiked along the Hurricane Hill trail, and for most of the hike there were snow topped mountain peaks that extended into the distance for miles, and on the other side of the trail were panoramic views of the Strait of Juan de Fuca. The scenes were breathtaking, and I can't imagine a better way to spend my 30th birthday. Plus, what a better way to make yourself feel young on a day you generally feel old than hiking up to what felt like the top of the world.
Before I left on my weekend getaway, I had the craving for banana bread. Rather than making a traditional banana bread (which don't get me wrong, plain old banana bread is incredible!), but why not mix two well known favorites like peanut butter and banana. Its obvious that the pair go well together, but I wasn't quite sure how it would translate in a loaf of bread. Well I can confirm that the combo works well together as the two main ingredients in this quick bread recipe, and the only thing I'd change next time is to add some cocoa powder!