All things legume

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Apparently I’m on a roll with the barz here… this isn’t intentional (and they do get a little redundant to photograph after awhile), but I guess legume-based dessert barz are my jam these days. Who knew.

BECAUSE THEY’RE AMAZING!

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Or maybe because I’m obsessed with all things legume. Whatever, one of my nicknames is Lentil for a reason…

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Also, I inadvertently had ice cream for dinner last Friday night. Sometimes, you just gotta do what you gotta do. See below for photographic evidence. I’ll give you one measly guess which one is mine…

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But back to barz. I’ll address your concern: no, you can’t taste the lentils (much like the time I made red lentil coconut ice cream — you get the earthiness from the lentils but once they’re hangin out with cashew butter and maple, your tastebuds don’t go LENTILS?! WTF?! No no. They’re actually a very neutral flavor. What’s more (because, there’s always more; just like parenthetical asides within a parenthetical aside; redundant much?! Jeez), the lentils add a whambam, no nonsense, whole food protein punch to your dessert, which is just winning in my book). I have other lentil barz on the blog but these are my favorites. They present kind of like an oatmeal cookie, with a similar texture, and I’m all over it.

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ALSO. By virtue of the fact that these are… virtuous… they qualify for breakfast-snack-lunch-snack-dinner-dessert; or some combination to that effect. You know, because LENTILS and OATS and CHOCOLATE. Which also happen to be three of my very fave things. I’m reserving them for dessert, for now… but I may have evened off a sliver to go with my breakfast. I mean, come on… the edge was uneven. You can’t have uneven bar cookies, it’s a crime. Luckily I am very adept (I learned this skill from my similarly-adept mother) at trimming and neatening all baked goods. It’s an essential skill, right up there with smoothing and leveling off the ice cream (though that one, I learned from my gram who was extremely wise in these kinds of things).

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So, barz. Sorry this is pretty much the umpteenth bar recipe on here and about the elevendyith that is made with a legume of some sort, but I’ve just been too lazy for indivudual cookies lately, and big chewy squares of bar cookie with a fork have been very appealing (they’re also fast, excellent when you’ve been out of the house for 12 hours including a workout, you’re famished and a nutrient-dense, satisfying sweet treat is necessary).

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Oaty Cashew Butter Lentil Bars

Vegan, gluten free, refined sugar free, soy free. And delicious! They are lightly sweet and satisfying (both taste testers concurred, and one of them likes really sweet things — I’m looking at you, Vacuum Vati!), so they appeal to a broad range of tastes. Recipe yield is one 8 by 8 pan, and is inspired by Ambitious Kitchen, here.

  • 1/2 c red lentils (dry), rinsed
  • 1/2 c cashew butter
  • 1/3 c pure maple syrup
  • 1 flax egg (1 tbsp ground flaxseed + 3 tbsp water; let sit 5 minutes)
  • 1 tbsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1 c rolled oats
  • heaping 1/4 c cashew meal
  • heaping 1/4 tsp fine sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 c extra dark chocolate chips

In a small saucepan, combine red lentils and 1 cup of water. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer for 15-20 minutes. Lentils are done when soft and all of the water has been absorbed. Set aside to cool. Once they’re cool, puree them with a tablespoon or two of water in the food processor, until smooth. Set aside.

Preheat the oven to 350, and lightly grease an 8 by 8 pan.

In a large bowl, whisk together cashew butter, maple syrup, and vanilla (if your cashew butter is cold, arm strength is necessary… think of it as part of your workout). Once combined, stir in flax egg and pureed lentils. On top of all that, toss in the oats, cashew meal, sea salt, baking soda, and chocolate chips. Stir until combined. Pour the batter into your prepared pan, and smoothy smooth out the top if that’s your thing. Pop them into the oven for 28-35 minutes — 28 will give you gooey bars, and more like 33 will give you dense and chewy ones (I prefer the latter). For the chewy, dense bars at about 33 minutes, the top should be firm to the touch, and a tester should come out nearly clean with a few crumbs.

Store covered in the fridge for extra chewyness (my fave).

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All kinds of random

IMG_2136This feels like it’s going to be one of those posts that is essentially a snapshotlet [ie a smallish snapshot] of my eatings and goings on for the last several weeks, which have been insanely busy.

I started a new 8-5 office job that will go until I leave for camp/grad school so I am readjusting to having a very consistent schedule. Which is GREAT except totally foreign because all of my jobs ever involved totally random and non-consistent schedules. And also standing. Lots and lots of standing. Which wasn’t my favorite until I began sitting all day, at which point I discovered that standing is pretty great. ANYWAY. Expect to see possibly slightly less on the blog until I can get settled into my schedule. But I shan’t be disappearing entirely… this girl’s gotta eat.

SO, let’s see. What randomness can I share today..

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I love it when people I love have birthdays, since it means I get to cake it up for them. Here’s the latest: chocolate cake with mocha buttercream.

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Thisthisthisthisthis!!!!!

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Jill and I got crazy and made red lentil, coconut milk and walnut ice cream and it was possibly the earthiest, maple-y, walnut-y, weirdest ice cream ever. But also very delicious. And weird. Did I mention lentils?! Because hahahahhahha I am one of the only few who would love lentils in ice cream. Trust me, it works! Recipe here.

SKIING!!!

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I finally got to spend quality slope time with my K2 babies. It was absolutely wonderful and gorgeous and hilarious and exhausting and amazing. And then I had a malt and all was right with the world.

BEACHING!!

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Because, February??! Uhh yeah. It doesn’t make sense to me either but it was sunny and warm and then cloudy and raining but there was delicious bread and scones and cheese and butter and a picnic and Elliott… a perfect day. Capped off by dinner at a kombucha bar/macrobiotic kitchen and then a sundae [whiskey bread pudding ice cream+ caramel+ a fudgy brownie and a metric ton of sprinkles] the size of my face. Because… I’m actually five.

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My dessert is massive. Teehee. The pie is E’s. I’m not THAT piggy, sheeeesh.

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I know, I know… horrible food photography for this next one but just go with it. FUDGYYYYYYY!

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IMG_2153Happy, gorgeous Saturday and delicious eats. Doesn’t get much better than that!

So called weirdness is now accepted normalcy

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Shut the front door. A SAVORY thing?!

No.

Can’t be.

But wait… it is!!!

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ENCHILADAS!!!

Or more accurately…

Lentiladas!!

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So dubbed by my work besties when I trotted these babies into work the other day all ecstatic like “guys guys guys!! I have homemade enchiladas for lunch and guess what?! They’re vegan and made with lentils!!” and they all looked at me with ‘well duh!!’ expressions, closely followed by some comments to the effect of “since when would we expect YOU to bring normal enchiladas with you?! That would just be weird and we’d be concerned”. Typical. You know, I might even love my work peeps more than lentils. Which is unfortunate as my last day there is the 30th of this month [I am moving on to beekeeping (!!!), more on that later]… I will miss you, loyal work peeps who proudly nicknamed me Lentil! Good thing we can still hang out like real life friends…

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So anyway. I brought lentiladas to work and everyone expected it. Obviously my weirdness has just become normalcy.

I also made naturally green cookies (to be posted shortlyish) and no one even batted an eye. My work here is done.

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Vegan Lentiladas with Salsa Verde

Vegan, gluten free (with gluten free tortillas, mine were corn+wheat). Fast, totally accessible for a weeknight dinner. I used store-bought salsa and enchilada sauce—next time I might try making my own sauce and not being such a bum. But whatever. The leftovers are excellent reheated– my yield was about 10 enchiladas, which made plenty of delicious leftovers. The recipe is slightly adapted from Hummusapien, here!

  • 1/2 c raw cashews, soaked for at least 2 hours(ish)
  • 3/4 c dry green lentils+2 c water for cooking
  • 1/2 c salsa verde + extra for serving
  • 1/2 a bell pepper, diced (mine was yellow)
  • 5-6 good sized white mushrooms, sliced and sautéed in a bit of olive oil
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 2 double handfuls of mixed greens (Mine was chard+kale+spinach)
  • 12 corn blue corn tortillas
  • 16 oz green enchilada sauce*
  • avo!! for serving. Obvi.

*this was the size of the jar I had—-it was delicious and was definitely not too much liquid. If you have an 8 oz can, that is also fine.

Cook yo’ lentils! I always use dried, as they’re super cheap in the bulk section and are very easy to cook—-bring water to a boil, dump in lentils, and simmer for about 20-25 minutes until they’re soft. Aaaaaanndddd… done!

Drain soaking cashews. In a food processor, process soaked cashews and 1/2 c salsa verde until nearly smooth. Add in lentils, diced bell pepper, sautéed mushrooms, sea salt, cayenne, and cumin. Process until combined. Add in mixed greens and process a bit more till everything is incorporated.

Preheat the oven to 350, and locate some kind of 9 by 13 pan. Pour about half of the enchilada sauce in the bottom of the pan. Take each tortilla and fill it lengthwise down the center with filling. Roll it up, and place it seam side down in the pan. If it breaks, who cares? It’ll be covered in sauce anyway…
Once all the tortillas are filled and nestled in next to their friends, pour the rest of the enchilada sauce evenly over the top. Bake for 30 minutes, and let cool for a few before serving. Serve with extra salsa and avo! Store leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge.

Jessie thinks they're awesome too…
Jessie thinks they’re awesome too…

Cookies n’stuff.

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Excuses? No, not really.

I don’t have much to say for myself.

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Except that it’s FRIDAY which means…

I missed cookie Thursday, so obviously we need to have cookie Friday. Duh.

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Besides that, I am officially UN spotty AND I have tonsillitis no longer. What what! Clearly cookies are a necessary celebration. Besides that, I riffed on the lentil cookies again and these were too unusual and good not to share. I got the idea since I wanted to figure out another gluten free cookie based on lentils that could be chocolate free for my choco-free friends (Jill, these are for you!).

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I promise to do something savory or NOT a cookie some point soon. I mean, ideally my next post but my food life is unpredictable so no guarantees.

In other random food news (such is my life: a string of food-events. Breakfast! Snack! Lunch! Snack! Dinner! Snack!), Mutti had a birthday last week, which meant deliciousness at Boulevard and high tea. Which also meant a food coma ensued. Sooo worth it. Apparenlty there are also going to be a thousand pictures in this post, sorry I’m not sorry I reeeeealllyyy like photography (or whatever it is that I do)!!

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Truth:

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Additionally, did you know that eggs+sautéed mushrooms and spinach+chopped walnuts+chopped dates+a small sprinkle of parmesan is unaccountably delicious? Because it is. Promise. Hey!! This is savory. Mostly… Do I get any points for that??

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But anyway. Cookies. The reason we’re here in the first place. Happy allergen free cookie Friday! Proof that everyone can (and should) enjoy a cookie (or five) :)

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Peanut Butter Lentil Cookies

Lightly sweet, as I prefer my ‘snacking’ cookies (as opposed to full on indulgent dessert). Full of protein and fiber, as well as a host of other minerals and nutrients and such (phosphorus, manganese, Vit B6), they’re also gluten free, vegan, and refined sugar free. I’ll snap to that. Recipe modified from the chocolate-chocolate chip lentil version from last week, here. Yield: 15 cookies (maybe would have been 16 if I could have stopped eating the dough, oops).

  • 1.5 c green lentils, cooked
  • 1/3 c organic salted peanut butter (mine was chunky)
  • 1/2 c rolled oats
  • 1/4 c pure maple syrup
  • 1.5 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/4 c unsweetened shredded coconut
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 c dark chocolate chips**
  • 1/8 c raw cocoa nibs**

**replace with carob for chocolate-free cookie fabulousness!

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If needed, precook your lentils (1/2 c dry=1.5 c cooked).

Preheat the oven to 350, and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

These are beyond easy (thank goodness for that because excuse me but who wants to make complicated cookies when they want cookies NOW?! Yes, that’s what I thought): Toss cooked lentils into the food processor, and process until mostly smooth. Add in peanut butter, oats, maple, vanilla, coconut, and baking powder, and pulse until it’s all combined into a big, deliciously thick mess. Stir in chocolate chips and cocoa nibs (I just take out the blade and use the bowl of the food processor). Drop by the tablespoon-sized ball onto the prepared cookie sheet, and bake 12  minutes until the tops are just firm. Let cool for a few, then move to a cooling rack to cool completely. Or just devour them immediately; why bother taking up fridge space for storage?!

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Tonsillitis=antibiotics=spottiness. Excuse me WHAT?!

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Cookies.

For when you start with tonsillitis and then end up with an allergic reaction to amoxicillin, AFTER the entire course is done.

I mean, COME ON.

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Dear body: Okay. I get it. You are no longer tolerant of things ending in ‘cillin’, and given that I’m not crazy about antibiotics anyway (unless its a dire situation, ie. can’t see tonsils on account of too much gunk), I promise promise not to take any more of the ‘cillin’ family. Next time please can we just use our words and you can TELL me that you don’t like something, rather than SHOWING me how much you hate it with a massive out break of red spots? Okay thanks. Love, soul residing in currently very spotty environs.

Because I really really really hate being spotty. Cookies might not even assuage how much crap this is.

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Now I’ve had several bendadryl and am somewhat struggling to complete my sentences. Because… I really wanted to spend my weekend looking like a red and white spotted cheetah. NOT.

Le sigh.

Since my friends all know me so well, they naturally suggested cookies. So I made myself cookies because that’s apparently what you do when your bipedally locomoting meat vehicle decides to throw a massive fit and make you unfit for viewing by other humans.

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But true to form, of course I made weird cookies. I mean, I’m stuck at home being spotty so why not get weird?! Benadryl makes me weird anyway so let’s just get weirder, right?! Except weird is my normal because a) you already know I put lentils in everything and b) I’ve already subjected you to green flecks in my cookies so this is really just riffing on an old theme…. of my habit of putting green stuff where it probably doesn’t belong. Too bad. I’m spotty and I like it and therefore … obviously it belongs there. I think my life is complete now: I have successfully put lentils and power greens into a cookie and made them taste good. WHAT.

On the plus side, my tonsils look normal now!

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Powerhouse Cookies

Fudgy, chocolatey, and… full of greens?! Gluten free, vegan, refined sugar free. High in protein, low in sugar. Not too sweet. So freaking easy since all you really get dirty is your food processor and a spoon. Yield: I got 19 cookies, on the smaller side (but not too small). Recipe adapted from Homemade Hearts, here!

  • 1.5 c black lentils, cooked
  • 1 c mixed power greens (mine was kale, chard, and spinach)
  • 1/2 c rolled oats
  • 1/4 c unsalted almond butter
  • 1/4 c pure maple syrup
  • 1.5 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/3 c unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp fine sea salt
  • 1/4 c extra dark chocolate chips + 1/8 c raw cocoa nibs

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If needed, precook your lentils (1/2 c dry + 1 c water until soft).

Line a baking sheet (or two) with parchment paper (I used one. lazy.). Preheat the oven to 350.

In a food processor, whizz lentils and greens until uniformly blended (though there should still be a bit of texture to it). Toss in oats, almond butter, maple, vanilla, cocoa powder, baking powder, and salt, and blend to combine, scraping down the sides of the food processor as needed. Remove blade, and stir in chocolate chips and cocoa nibs. Drop by the rounded tablespoon onto the prepared cookie sheets, and bake for 13 minutes, until the top is just slightly firm. Remove and let cool on a rack. Store in an airtight container in the fridge!

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A Bulk-Off of Epic Proportions

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Okay peeps, here’s what’s up.

I challenged myself to a bulk-off.

And no, this has nothing to do with my copious amount of musculature (ha).

Actually, it means that I have to use ALL the grains/beans/legumes in my pantry that I’ve acquired though major stalking of the bulk section before I buy any more. Simple. They’ve just gotten a wee bit out of hand lately, which means I have to step up my grain-legume game.

And this happens to be exactly what I’m doing.

Bulk bins:0, Hayley: 1 (or maybe two. I’ve gotten through three bags o’stuff in 2 days, I think that counts for two points).

Bag one: leftover hazelnuts —> dark chocolate hazelnut butter. I mean, OBVI. Why on earth would I make anything else?! Except this time I used 80% dark chocolate so it’s naaaaiiiiccceeee and dark. Mysterious. Bitter, some weirdos out there might say… But I say whatever. To each his or her own bitter. {to be found here if the photos made you drool}.

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Bag two: farro —> um… cooked farro!! It’s delicious, nutty and almost sweet, and goes really well with anything else lurking in your fridge. My lunch today was chicken+farro+peas+avo. Excellent. Besides that, it cooks quickly: combine 1 part grain to two parts water, bring to a boil, and then simmer for 15-20 minutes. It should still be ‘toothsome’ when cooked… you know, like good-chewy. And don’t forget to rinse your grains before cooking them! Farro is always a little dusty.

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Bag three: LENTILS! Natch. —> mo’lentils. Except this time they got tossed in with sautéed onions, mushrooms, peppers, and greens+basil and oregano. Mmm. Din din. Over farro for leftovers!

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Also, I discovered a really fab new lunch! And it’s stupid easy (exactly how lunch should be. I’m generally starving. Why on earth should it be complicated?!)

IMG_6354Basil Chicken and Veggies on Toast

  1. Acquire some diced chicken {cooked, pretty please}
  2. chop up some mushrooms and mixt greens
  3. heat good quality olive oil in a skillet over medium with a cube of frozen basil or some fresh stuff if it’s in season
  4. toss in veggies once the whole shebang is hot, and sauté until they’re nice and soft
  5. Mix in chicken so it gets all basily
  6. toast a whole wheat english muffin, and grate some parmesan over the top once it’s toasty. Alternatively, mash an avocado over the muffin—also incredibly delicious (if not better)
  7. pile up an obscenely tall pile of chicken-veggie over the muffin halves, and pretend you can actually eat it with your hands. Laugh nicely at yourself when you try… and then procure a fork and eat like a civilized human. Or something.

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I also utilized some bulk buckwheat groats in my bulk challenge —> they are currently residing in the crust of some no-bake, gluten free, vegan, refined sugar free lemon-coconut bars. Hooray!! Those are chilling, and as such there are no pictures… yet. If they’re good, I’ll share!

Happy Random Thursday. Why is it so hot here?! This is like summer weather and it isn’t summer yet and I’m not prepared and therefore am whiny. Whine whine whine. I think it’s snack time, that might curtail the whining.

Hellooooo, lemon bars, are you ready yet?!

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A snapshot of my random (and undeniably fab) life

Welcome to Random Friday! I have several nice lifeish photos hanging out on my phone and they need a home. And I figured I would accompany them with several hilarious anecdotes about my life, because… well, why not? My blog, my rules. And besides, I’ve heard y’all think I’m funny so I thought I’d brighten up your Friday. Ready… GO!

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Purple nails and letters from Avis deVoto and Julia Child. Because I’m awesome. And because this is the pile on my end table: reinforcing my own stereotype or something?!

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I love it when my chocolate loves me back!

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Somehow yesterday morning I managed to get roughly 1.5 cups of raw (which then became cooked) spinach, half a zucchini, a carrot, a quarter cup of wild blueberries, and a quarter cup of applesauce into my oatmeal. If that isn’t impressive, I don’t know what is… take that, five-a-day! I think this is a new record, even for me…

Of course there was also the obligatory chia seeds, almond butter, shredded unsweetened coconut, cinnamon, nutmeg, and a teeny bit of maple. Maybe a little bee pollen. And yes. There were, in fact, oats in there too. Sadly it was too delicious and I ate it too fast for there to be a picture. Next time..

Mmmm. And it was DELICIOUS. Naturally. I don’t bother starting off my days with undelicious things. Why bother? Life is way too short for that.

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And then I added lentils to my go-to quinoa cakes. INSPIRED. Why has this never transpired before?!

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AND THEN. I’ve been replacing whole wheat flour with lots of other favorite alternatives lately… but my favorite is sprouted quinoa flour in this banana bread. It’s already my fave bbread recipe, but it gets that.much.better with quinoa flour. Besides, I get rave reviews from several of my gastronomically-inclined peeps so I know it’s not just in my head…

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Crystalized ginger is really pretty.

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And the obligatory cat-napping photo… Jessie doesn’t want you to disturb her napping human! Alternatively… the napping human is hogging too much of the pillow…

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Wise kitty of the forest.

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