Recipes

Apple Crisp

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I think my heart has a special portion just dedicated to all things seasonal, maybe about 30% of it. I’d say more, but Harry Potter references do hold quite a stock in there too. A part of this is being that person that dedicates everything to welcoming the autumn season. This includes wearing boots, looking for pumpkins, and yes, baking. I will say that I won’t fall subject to being a pumpkin spice fanatic (the hype for that is TOO much!) but I’m all for apples, cinnamon, etc. I saw Karlie Kloss’s video that inspired me to give apple crisp a try, then post it here in a blog rather than its original video format. The resulting taste was definitely worth it and the hardest part of this recipe was just having to wait while it was in the oven. Have at it!

Ingredients

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Filling –

  • Sliced & peeled apples — 4 cups
    I used about three apples. Maybe four.
  • Lemon juice — 2 teaspoons
  • Maple Syrup — 1 tablespoon
  • Vanilla — 1 teaspoon
  • Ground nutmeg — 1/4 teaspoon
  • Ground cinnamon — 1/4 teaspoon

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Topping –

  • Almond flour — 1/2 cup
  • Oats — 1/2 cup
    The original recipe calls for them to be gluten-free. I don’t really care so I just used regular rolled oats
  • Ground nutmeg — 1 teaspoon
  • Maple syrup — 1 1/2 tablespoon
  • Coconut oil — 1/3 cup
    Don’t have the oil be in liquid form, but also not totally hard. In the middle is perfect.

The original recipe doesn’t list any type of sugar in the topping ingredients, but when replaying the video, it sounds like 1/3 cup of date sugar is added even though it’s not listed. I didn’t add it to my recipe, but I did lightly sprinkle regular sugar on top of the apple crisp before placing it in the oven.

Process

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Place apples in small pan. I did barely spray olive oil in the pan beforehand in fear that the mixture would stick.
  3. Add the rest of the filling ingredients (lemon juice, maple syrup, vanilla, nutmeg, and cinnamon) and toss around till it’s evenly spread over all the apples.
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  4. In another bowl, combine the topping ingredients  except for the oil (flour, oats, nutmeg, cinnamon, and maple syrup) and mix. Add in oil afterward and mix evenly.
  5. Place topping over apples.
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  6. Bake for about 35 minutes.

Enjoy! I was pleasantly surprised by this and from now on will definitely reach for crisp recipes rather than pie. Don’t hate me, but I’ve always been more of a cake girl rather than pie, though this is a happy alternative for me.

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Healthy Banana Bread Muffins

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I’m convinced that certain things aren’t supposed to be “healthy,” like brownies. I’ve tried and failed twice to make those and it was a disaster. Recently, though, I found a recipe for banana bread muffins and I had to give them a try, if only for the sake of not going down without a fight. Chocolate treats may not be my strong suit at the moment, but these baked goods were worth my time. I will say that they’re not the sweetest (note no artificial sugar is involved) but the bread-type consistency is a-ma-zing.

Ingredients (makes 12 muffins):

  • whole wheat flour — 1 cup
  • Oats –1/2 cup
  • Applesauce — 1/2 cup
    * Try to make sure the ingredients are nothing but apples, as many brands use unnecessary sweeteners
  • Plain, non-fat greek yogurt — 3/4 cup
  • Almond milk — 1/4 cup
  • Cinnamon — 1/2 teaspoon
  • Baking powder — 1 teaspoon
  • 1 egg
  • 2 bananas
    * I suggest overripe bananas!

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Gathering the ingredients is pretty much the most difficult part of this recipe, as the process is as simple as…

  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit
  • Combine dry ingredients (oats, flour, cinnamon, and baking powder) in one bowl
  • Whisk egg then combine it with other wet ingredients (yogurt, applesauce, and almond milk) in another bowl

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  • Combine wet and dry ingredients
  • Mash up bananas, leaving them smooth with just a few small chunks
  • Fold bananas in mixture
    * I actually had to look up “folding.” It’s essentially mixing in the bananas by using a spatula/wood spoon and “folding” it instead of stirring or mixing.

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  • Line muffin tin and place batter in each of the 12 muffin liners. The batter shouldn’t overfill any of the muffin liners.

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  • Place in oven for 20 mintes.
  • Let cool and enjoy!

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The Best “Easy” Sandwich You Could Make

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Sandwich-making is lost art form. Unfortunately, it’s been buried beneath a ton of sexist jokes and therefore doesn’t get the credit it deserves. Seriously though, I’m convinced I love sandwiches a minimum of four times more than your average person. I’m all for purchasing a better-than-average sandwich but when I make them on my own, I often do go for the ordinary sandwich. This was an exception, though. All it took was buying a 50¢ (go, go, go shawty) wheat bun and it somehow cause me to go above and beyond. Here’s that delicious and so-easy-that-you-don’t-have-an-excuse-not-to-do-it sammich.

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I used:

  • wheat bun/roll/whatever you want to call it
  • sliced turkey
  • 1 egg
  • spinach
  • feta
  • bell peppers
  • avocado (not pictured!)

Everything after is pretty self-explanatory. I made the egg sunny side up (with olive oil) and also placed the cut bell peppers in the pan for a bit after the egg. I typically like less meat on my sandwich and more crunch from the veggies (lettuce, spinach, what-have-you), but after setting up my sandwich I realized I did need two slices of turkey instead of one. After placing the turkey, the avocado followed, and all other ingredients, along with the cooked egg and bell peppers.

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And there you have it: a sandwich that could be given at a fancy shmancy brunch place but you could enjoy from the comfort of your own home. In PJs. Watching Netflix. And that I think is what they call a win-win.

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Natural No Bake Nut Bars

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This blog post is brought to you by an overheated kitchen, anger (due to the heat of course), and deliciousness. I guarantee you the heat and the kitchen are totally my fault, and I hope you don’t encounter it, but the deliciousness is completely credited to a recipe that I recently stumbled upon on the blog by Poppy Deyes. Essentially, my process is practically identical, though I have added a few notes (such as don’t try mixing fresh-out-of-the-oven oats with your bare hands) that a person like me would need.

You’ll Need:

  • Pitted Dates —- 1 cup
  • Honey —- 1/4 cup
  • Almond butter —- 1/4 cup
  • Unsalted almonds (roasted optional), chopped —- 1 cup
  • Rolled oats —- 1 1/2 cups
  • Raisins OR dried cranberries —- 1 handful

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Process:

**IF you prefer to roast the almonds and oats, start by setting your oven to 355 degrees fahrenheit so it can preheat.

The original recipe calls for throwing the dates into a food processor, but I threw them in a blender instead (and had no issue doing this). They end up looking as you’d expect: a squishy, easy to mold type thing.

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Toasting the almonds and oats is an optional step, though I do recommend it. It’s also why I mentioned in the ingredients list that having roasted almonds is optional as I eventually put them in the oven anyway. Beforehand, I had whole almonds and had to mash them into smaller pieces. And yes, I said mash because my patience was not about to be tested by sitting there and individually chopping every almond. I mashed them by placing them in a Ziploc plastic bag, then mashing that bag with the end of a can opener. Not the fanciest option, but it definitely works. Place oats and almonds in the oven until they’re golden on the top, for about 10 minutes.

Afterwards, WAIT FOR IT TO COOL if you want to use your hands to mix ingredients together later. I didn’t think about this and wasn’t able to use my hands because, you know, I don’t have supernatural hands that can withstand an unnatural amount of heat.

Combine the honey and almond butter in a small saucepan over low heat. Mix together. Again, I let it overheat which made the mixture even hotter, so just allow for a warm temperate and remove from heat as soon as the ingredients are properly mixed. Pour that over the nutty mixture in the bowl.

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Stir all the ingredients together and mix mix mix. This is the part I missed out and couldn’t use my hand, but I stirred for a long while before everything was properly combined.

Place mixture in a baking pan, tin, whatever suits your fancy. I lined the pan with foil to make it easier later on. Press mixture down until it’s flat and as even as can be. Obviously, it’s up to you how thin you’d prefer the bars to be.

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Let mixture rest in fridge for about 20 minutes. Then, cut it into bars and you are done!

For storage, I wrapped them in baking paper and placed them in a container so they could sit in the fridge. The paper may not be necessary, but I was afraid they would stick and I figured it would make it easier to grab-and-go.

Enjoy!

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Favorite Breakfast

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Often times, the best things are also the simplest. I don’t know why I’m surprised by this, as it holds true time and time again. The same can be said for this breakfast, which is the easiest thing to make while also being my favorite thing to eat in the mornings

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The process is simple: make an over medium egg while leaving some bread to toast. For the egg, I prefer to use olive oil, then cracking one egg white on the pan. Over the egg white, I also crack one more whole egg, then add salt and pepper. Once the egg is done, I use the pan for whichever vegetables I can find in the fridge. I will say my favorites with this breakfast plate are bell peppers and zucchini.

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Also, excuse my poor, burnt pan. We can’t come to terms with how much heat it can take. Anyway, Once the toast is done, I add avocado to it, and soon, the veggies are done as well. And done! Easy breezy. Easy peachy? Whatever the saying is, easy and delicious! Of course, my favorite part comes afterward. Sometimes, I add all the ingredients on the toast, though I do usually enjoy them separately.

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Chocolate Cookies

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After hearing raves about it, I stole this recipe from Tanya Burr’s blog. The only issue was transferring everything over to American units and finding my way around certain ingredients. The recipe ended up being more than simple with a bit of tweaking of my own. I’ve included both ounces and cups measurements to make it easier

Ingredients

  • Butter – 7/8 cup ≈ 7 ounces
    Although the original recipe doesn’t call for either, I used salted butter.
  • Baker’s sugar – 1.25 cups ≈ 10.5 ounces
    Original recipe calls for “caster sugar,” which essentially is British lingo for extra fina sugar. Look for sugar labeled “extra” or “very fine,” or “baker’s sugar.”
  • 1 large egg
  • Coco powder – 1/3 cup ≈ 2.6 ounces
  • Self-rising flour – 1.2 cups ≈ 9.7 ounces
    US grocery stores do carry “self-rising” flour, but regular flour could also be used as long as it’s combined with 1/2 teaspoon of salt and 1 1/2 teaspoons of baking powder.
  • 1 large bar of white chocolate for baking
  • 1 large bar of milk/dark/bittersweet chocolate
    Original recipe makes adding one more milk chocolate optional, though I found adding just one to be more than enough.
  • Optional: dash of milk

Also needed: parchment paper.

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Method
Preheat oven to 390 degrees fahrenheit.
Mix together butter and sugar ( I just used a wooden spoon to do this).
Crack in the egg.
Mix in the rest of the dry ingredients: coco powder and flour.
If mixture looks too dry, add a bit of milk.
Add in broken pieces of chocolate bars to the mixture with your hands.
Line baking trays with parchment paper. I found that this recipe works wonderfully with huge cookies, so be generous with your handfuls when placing them on the tray. I was able to make a total of 13 cookies – a baker’s dozen!
Leave cookies in oven for 11 minutes. The original recipes stresses this point, as the cookies will not look done, but they are! Leaving them longer will make them harder than they need to be.
Wait for them to cool for 30 minutes (if you can!).
Enjoy!

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Easy & Healthy “Ice Cream”

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Please, please, please don’t be fooled by the lack of color in the picture above; this really is about the most cheerful dessert you can make in less than 5 minutes! So easy anyone could’ve thought this up (as I’m sure they have) but go ahead and take the credit while you’re putting this together in the blender. All you’ll need is:

  • 1 frozen banana (I recommend an overripe one for it to be sweeter)
  • Nut butter (I used almond)
  • Trader Joe’s Dark Chocolate Nibs (the secret ingredient!)

The measurements for these ingredients is really up to you. If you’re wondering, I used about 1 generous tablespoon of almond butter and about half the container of the Dark Chocolate Nibs. Just mix all these ingredients in a blender and voila! You may want to only do half the banana first with the full measurements of the other ingredients, then blend in the other half once it’s mushier. Wow. Never though I’d use “mushier” in a sentence. The Dark Chocolate Nibs really do make all the difference! Of course the dessert is still good without them, but they do help. If there isn’t a Trader Joe’s in your area, you could use a dark chocolate chip alternative, though these are a lot closer to actual cocoa versus the store candy, so get it as natural as it can be with none of that milk chocolate stuff. Happy blending!

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