strawberry loaf!

hello all! it has been SO LONG since I last posted, but this time i pinky promise to never leave like that again…lol mom life had me tied down until recently. as of a few nights ago, my daughter is officially sleeping all the way through the night in her own bedroom and taking two perfectly long naps during the day. HOW COULD I BE SO LUCKY?! my life has changed completely and suddenly I have time again! Time to do me – to bake, read, paint, nap, whatever! Hopefully I don’t jinx it…and I know it wont always be like this, but whatever, let me celebrate 😛

ANYWAY. this past weekend a bunch of my friends and our family’s got together to go strawberry picking at bella’s organic farm on sauvies island. when i pick berries, i get in the zone and then end up with too many berries. enter, strawberry loaf. this recipe will put one whole cup of (sliced) strawberries to use and is seriously SUPER easy to make. you pretty much just put everything together and stir. what you end up with is a moist, fruity cake with a cracked, almost crunchy crust. it is seriously amazing. my husband and i ate an entire loaf today. no shame.

strawberry loaf

WHAT YOU NEED

  • 1 cup strawberries
  • 3/4 cups flour
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/8 cup olive oil
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1 tsp finishing sugar (optional)

preheat oven to 350. grease one 9×5 loaf pan.

slice strawberries and place in medium bowl. sprinkle 1 tbs sugar (from 1 cup) over the strawberries. set aside.

in another bowl combine flour, sugar, cinnamon, salt, and baking soda. add oil and eggs to strawberries, then fold in flour mixture. stir until just combined. pour the mixture into your greased pan. sprinkle finishing sugar on top of loaf if you want to,

bake for 45 min

cool on wire rack

ENJOY!

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yam trio frittata!

I made a frittata. A yam trio frittata. A frittata so delicious, it brought me out of my blogging hiatus. Those who regularly read my posts know, it has been way too damn long! I’ve just been caught up in doing new mom things, like eating take out and not folding my laundry. It feels like things are finally getting back to normal these last couple weeks. My daughter, Nori Luz, is 6.5 months old and is becoming quite the independent woman! More down time for mom!! YAY! Anyway, back to the fritatta! I bought some precut yams at new seasons – a trio pack of purple, white and orange yams. I paired the yams with some goat cheese and grilled onions, poured over beaten eggs and BOOM! delicious brunch addition that looks and tastes like it was harder to make than it was – and when you’ve got your hands full with other things, thats what you want! no one needs to know how easy it can be 🙂

yam fritatta

What you need

  • 4 eggs, beaten
  • 1/2 cup diced yams
  • 1/2 sweet onion, diced
  • 2 tbs goat cheese
  • 1 tbs olive oil
  • salt and pepper

Preheat oven to 400. In a cast iron skillet, heat olive oil on medium high. Cook onions and yams until lightly browned, about 8 mins. Remove from heat. Sprinkle goat cheese evenly around yams. Pour egg on top. Add salt and pepper. Put in oven for 7 mins or until eggs are set. ENJOY!

apple cake!

More often than not, when I bake using fruit, it’s because I bought fruit earlier in the week with the intentions of snacking healthy but ended up choosing junk food instead. I could beat myself up about it, but I’d rather just accept that I’ve got a mean sweet tooth and turn my almost bad fruit into amazing things, like cobblers and cakes. This time around, I made an apple cake. I really love baked goods that can double as a treat and as breakfast – who doesn’t love NOT cooking first thing in the morning? Making coffee is hard enough some mornings. Gosh – it’s amazing how much my morning attitude has changed since having Nori Luz! Mama’s sleepy. And hungry. Oh yeah, about that cake. It turned out perfectly moist, perfectly sweet and perfectly delicious. I really enjoyed biting into soft apple pieces suspended in the cake – I had only had apple pie until now, so it was a new sensation for me but I can strongly say, I was into it. Would I make it again? You betcha.

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What you need:

  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • 2 cups diced, peeled apples

Preheat your oven to 350. Grease and flour a 9″ round pan and set aside.

Beat together your vegetable oil and eggs until frothy. Add remaining ingredients until well combined. Stir in apples. Pour into prepared pan.

Bake for 30-40 minutes. Do not remove from pan for 10 mins. ENJOY!!

cocoa dusted almonds!

As a new mom, I find it much harder to find time to bake treats and cook healthy meals. I often find myself snacking on candy to make it through the day. What I really needed to find is a healthy AND sweet tasting snack that’ll keep me going when I can’t find the time yet to make a real meal – these cocoa dusted almond do the trick. They’re refined sugar free and a great grab and go snack. THe best part, is they require very little prep work – your pretty much just mixing things together. Easy peesy.

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What you need:

  • 1 1/2 cups dry roasted almonds
  • 2 tbsp cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp agave
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • pinch salt

Put almonds into a bowl. Pour agave and vanilla on top and stir, to coat each almond. in a separate bowl combine cocoa, salt and cinnamon. Pour coated almonds into the dry and toss to coat. Pour coated almonds into a sifter and shake a few times. ENJOY!

strawberry rhubarb bars!

Hooray! Rhubarb is in season – or at least it seemed that way at the grocery store…I couldn’t tell you a single thing about rhubarb, besides that it goes well with strawberries. I’m not sure what it tastes like on it’s own, I’m not sure if it is a fruit or a veggie and without being labeled at the store, I would have had no idea it was there. I’m glad I saw it, though, because I whipped up some delicious mix in pan strawberry rhubarb bars! Since you make it all in the pan, there is very little clean up and that means more time to sit and savor! They’re delicious on their own, with a scoop of vanilla ice cream, or make a nice breakfast with some plain yogurt. No matter how you serve them, they’re sure to please!

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What you need:

  • 1 cup oats
  • 3/4 cup flour
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 6 tbs unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 tsp cornstarch
  • 1 tbs sugar
  • 1/2 cup rhubarb, diced
  • 1 1/2 cup strawberries, diced

Preheat your oven to 375. Line an 8×8 pan with parchment. Combine oats, flour, sugar and salt in pan and mix. Pour in melted butter and combine with hands until clumps begin to emerge. Scoop out 1/2 cup of the mixture and set aside. Press the rest down firmly and evenly in the pan. Scatter the strawberry and rhubarb on top of the crumb crust and sprinkle cornstarch and sugar evenly on top. Sprinkle your remaining crumb mixture on top as well. Bake for 35 mins. Allow to cool in pan. ENJOY!

no bake cereal bars!

Since my last post, my life has changed significantly! On April 21, I gave birth to my amazing daughter, Nori-Luz! Since then, I’ve just been getting used to being a new mom, eating a lot of take out and getting little sleep. Its hard to cook myself and husband nice meals when I am constantly feeding our daughter, heck, its hard to even eat a bowl of cereal – enter, the cereal bar. Easy to grab and snack when you’ve only got one free hand and since they’re no bake, a crying baby can’t distract you from taking them out of the oven on time! I made mine with honey bunches of oats, but you could really use any cereal you’d like.

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What you need:

  • 3 cups cereal
  • 1/2 cup almonds, chopped
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened coconut flakes
  • 2/3 cup honey
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened peanut butter
  • 1 tsp vanilla

Grease a 9×13 pan and set aside. Combine cereal, almonds and coconut flakes in a medium mixing bowl. In a small saucepan combine honey, brown sugar and salt until smooth. Remove from heat and add peanut butter and vanilla. Pour liquid mixture into dry mixture and stir. Pour mixture into prepared pan and press flat. Allow to cool completely before cutting into bars. ENJOY!

banana chocolate chip breakfast cake!

Having baked goods for breakfast is always a nice treat, but sometimes they can be too sweet and make the rest of my day sort of crappy. To solve this problem, I made a super lightly sweetened banana cake! It has mini chocolate chips in it and is topped with powdered sugar, but even still, I wanted to put a little honey on it when I ate it for breakfast. I really loved it! My husband loved it too – he has been eating it as a snack as well. He has issues when he eats too many sweets, so it is a perfect treat for him. What makes this cake even better, is that its a one bowl mix – hardly any clean up! WOOO!

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What you need:

  • 1/3 cup oil
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 1/8 cups flour
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 3/4 tsp baking powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 banana, mashed
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup mini chocolate chip

Preheat oven to 350. Grease and flour a 9″ round pan and set aside.

In a large mixing bowl, whisk together oil, sugar and eggs. Add in the rest of the ingredients (except for the mini chips) and mix until just combined. Fold in mini chips.

Pour into your prepared pan and bake for 45 mins.

ENJOY!

 

coconut chocolate chip oatmeal cookies!

Uh oh. These cookies I made are gonna get me into some trouble. They are so flipping delicious, I sort of wish I hadn’t tried one yet. They are perfectly chewy, the chocolate chips and coconut flakes are perfectly proportioned and the oats add a nice bit of texture to every bite. I used large flakes of unsweetened coconut rather than sweetened shredded coconut, and I think this gives them a more tropical flavor. The chocolate chips are semi-sweet, but I think dark chocolate could be a nice substitution if you have them!

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What you need:

  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1/2 cup + 2tbs flour
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 1/2 cups quick oats
  • 1/2 cup chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup coconut flakes

Preheat oven to 325.

In a large mixing bowl, cream together butter and sugars until light and fluffy. Add egg and vanilla. In a separate bowl, sift together flour, salt and baking soda and then add to your wet mixture. Mix until just combined – be careful not to over mix. Stir in your oats, chocolate chips and coconut by hand. Spoon rounded tablespoons onto an un-greased baking sheet. Bake for 12 minutes. ENJOY!

brown sugar topped banana muffins!

When it comes to cooking and baking for my husband, he is very easy to please, but when it comes to the day to day stuff – sometimes, i mess up and do things that make him upset. Its normal to have disagreements and to get upset with one another sometimes, but that doesn’t mean it feels good! Luckily, because I am so good at pleasing him with grub I have a way to ask for forgiveness that also takes my mind off of things and makes me feel better too! Earlier today, I was a real sassafras, so I decided to make up for it with one of his favorite treats – banana bread!! This time, I made it into muffins and added a little brown sugar topping that adds a nice sweet crunch to the tops. They’re delightful!! You don’t need to have been sassy to your lover to make these apology muffins, heck – you don’t even have to be sorry – you just gotta be hungry! This recipe will make you 12 muffins.

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What you need:

  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 3 ripe bananas, mashed
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 egg
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 3 tbs butter, melted
  • 2 tbs brown sugar
  • 1 tbs flour

Preheat the oven to 350. Line a muffin tray with paper liners.

In a mixing bowl, mix together vegetable oil, egg and sugar. Add in banana, flour, salt and baking powder and mix until combined. Fill each muffin tin 2/3 full with batter.

In a small bowl, combine butter, brown sugar and flour. Add a teaspoon to each muffin tin and swirl around with a knife.

Bake for 30-35 mins.

ENJOY!

chocolate dipped coconut macaroons!

I absolutely love the combination of chocolate and coconut. For some reason, it tastes like mint to me. I’ve told people about this before but no one ever seems to agree! Maybe I have weird taste buds, or perhaps I have a twisted wire in my brain, but in any case, it’s a flavor combination that never fails! My favorite coconut treat is macaroons. They are so perfect and chewy and easy to make. For this recipe, you’ve gotta get a little sticky, but I think that’s part of the fun! I made these only using six ingredients – shredded coconut, flour, salt, vanilla, sweetened condensed milk and chocolate. In the past, I have used egg whites, but this time, I wanted to try something a little different and faster. What you end up with is a cookie that is hard on the outside and chewy, gooey on the insides. Perfect if you ask me!

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What you need:

  • 1/2 can sweetened condensed milk
  • 2 1/2 cups shredded coconut
  • 1/3 cup flour
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 3/4 cups chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350. Line a baking sheet with parchment and set aside.

In a medium sized bowl, combine shredded coconut, flour and salt. In a separate bowl mix together sweetened condensed milk and vanilla and then pour into your dry ingredients. Mix together using your hands until well combined. Scoop 12 cookies onto baking sheet with a small ice cream scoop, wet hands and roll each one in your hands to make a nice shape. Bake for 15 mins. Cool.

Replace old parchment with new parchment on your baking sheet and set aside.

While your cookies are cooling, melt chocolate in the microwave in 30 second increments, stirring in between, until melted. Dip the bottom of each cookie into the melted chocolate and place on your parchment lined baking sheet. Put in freezer for 20 minutes. Allow to warm back to room temperature before eating.

ENJOY!!