The other day I received a package with no return address and a secret admirer was the sender.
My heart leapt with joy because I knew it had finally arrived! My friend–whom I stayed with when I was in New York–had sent me a package awhile ago. I knew it was from her when I read that it was to her chickpea; she’s deathly allergic to them so it was a joke. Isn’t that unfortunate though? To be allergic to chickpeas… Oi!
There was a surprise beneath every layer.
A canister of delicious chai tea and handmade stationary!
I am seriously blessed to be surrounded by such wonderful people. Really and truly, every day I am given so many reasons to smile. From random bump-ins on the street, to constant messages from dear friends, and to comments I get from you all. Speaking of comments, my mom finally left her first reply in my last post! Whenever I’m in Florida we sit around the kitchen table and I’ll read my posts out loud to them. This blog makes them smile
It just so happened that before I opened the package I turned on the burner to heat some water for a cup of tea.
The chai tea was delicious and flavorful with all its spices. I had it with a warm lemon poppyseed Heart Thrive + coconut oil. After the picture was snapped I decided to spread on some cranberry preserves as well. This is the best way I’ve enjoyed this flavor of Heart Thrive. For some reason, it just tasted better this time around.
Dinner was something I was very much looking forward to... more so than usual.
Not too long ago while blogreading I checked up to see if the lovely Angharad was still alive and kickin’. Indeed she was because I saw a new recipe that I knew I had to recreate! Ladies and gentlemen, introducing the spicy black bean burger. This sounded like an amazing recipe to make on a Sunday night, since it’d be convenient to have these available on busy days. That night I had it in a handmade flour tortilla with bell peppers, homemade salsa verde, cilantro, and since I had no sour cream on hand I just used Greek yogurt. This was actually a surprisingly good substitute since the yogurt is thick and tart. As the patties were baking, my roommate and her boyfriend exclaimed how good it smelled. Well now I can say that they taste even better than they smell! Though the truth is, I don’t think Angharad could ever give us a bad recipe even if she tried.
A new twist on my favorite snack as of late.
Instead of using granola I nuked a crumbled lemon poppyseed Heart Thrive in the microwave with some soymilk till it got nice and soft. Then I added white chocolate chips and cashew butter. I am so glad I opened up this glorious bag of white chocolate chips!
Another surprise in the mail from a very dear friend of mine.
I’ve heard so many praises about this cookbook and now I know why!!! There are so many incredible sounding recipes, where’s a girl to start?! Thanks so much Liz! The ideal situation would be to invite every single one of you over and we’d all choose a bunch of recipes, then hunt and gather, and prepare and enjoy a most glorious feast. Imagine that? Being surrounded by that many awesome people and amazing food.
Breakfast on my critique day.
After having my critique (my piece was the only left to be critiqued) postponed three times–I was ready to get it over with! But I knew I had to start the day on a delicious note and the rest would fall into place. I had a bowl of yogurt, mango bits, pomegranate arils, a warm apricot Heart Thrive + coconut oil, and Sunland’s banana peanut butter.
Yeah, I think a yogurt mess was a great decision!
Oh and the crit went really well!!! It’s always nice to hear other perspectives and suggestions. The class actually answered one of my doubts of whether or not I should’ve made the video longer–they wished it was!
I cut a butternut squash and I left for five minutes and look what happened! Whoa!
I had to have another spicy black bean burgers! This time I filled the handmade tortilla with butternut squash, avocado, cilantro, manchego cheese, tomato sauce, and red pepper jelly. Can I get a witness?? This was so pleasing to every kind of taste; sweet, savoury, spicy, tangy, straight up delicious.
Tart fro-yo + One Lucky Duck's raw blonde macaroon = A delicious new take on Sweet-tart!
Couldn't get enough of the butternut!
When I was looking for falafel recipes I stumbled upon a few sweet potato ones. So this led me to making a falafel wrap with butternut squash, cucumber slices, tomato slices, avocado, cilantro, fresh tzatziki, onions, and lettuce. Yum yum yum and more yum!
A very productive study date!
Leftover yogurt pancakes
One of them was a banana pancake and I chopped some dark chocolate on top. Coconut oil, cinnamon, and Apple & Maple syrup was spread on all the pancakes. The other two pancakes were topped with diced apples and confectioner’s sugar mixed with nutmeg. On the side I also made a dip for the apples; a mixture of Sunland’s banana peanut butter and yogurt. I’ve seen this done on some blogs so I thought I’d give it a try–and I shall try, try again. This was good!
Sometimes I like to get up close but never too personal.
Speaking of chocolate, this is what the fig, fennel, and almond dark chocolate bar looks like.
Tried something totally new...
I have never had buffalo wings in my life so when I saw that I had one more Gardein freebie coupon left, I thought I’d give their vegan “buffalo wings” a chance. But I had no idea what they were usually served with. After “researching” it I decided to transform my tzatziki sauce into a ranch dressing by adding some extra ingredients. I also made some Old Bay season yam fries; and steamed some kale, seasoned it, massaged it in olive oil, and topped with avocado slices. Spicy!!! I can’t tell you if these were authentic tasting or not, but I can tell you that I liked them! The texture wasn’t too funky (+ no bones!) and you could taste the vinegar in the sauce, which I didn’t mind. Actually, after looking up some buffalo wings recipes, vinegar is a common ingredient.
Crumbled granola nuggets + soymilk + Cacao Bliss; warmed up in the microwave.
Whenever I pull out my personal casserole dish I swear the stars instantly align!
In the dish: roasted butternut squash and yam (tossed in coconut oil and cinnamon) + avocado + kale + homemade falafel balls + tzatziki mixed with tamarind-date chutney + cilantro. Random and flavorful. I love the sweet and spicy combo of the tamarind-date chutney; it brought the tzatziki to whole other level.
After my last post, the rest of the week seemed to fly by. Something or someone out there is listening! It’s Friday and I have no idea what my weekend plans are. My choices are: go up to Charlottesville or stay snowed in the comfort of my own home. We’ll see, we’ll see. Now if only I could stock up on this no matter how my weekend pans out…
I know a few all of you will appreciate this!
Matilda and I wish you a joyous weekend!