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Dessert, Nosh

Coffee Date Pudding Cake

February 12, 2015
Coffee Date Pudding Cake_1

Today is Adrian’s birthday! I’m not sure if he’d want me to share his age, but if you remember my recent birthday, add seven years to that. (Wink) It’s also Valentine’s Day this weekend, and although Adrian is on the “it’s not a real holiday” side of the fence, we’ll combine the two by observing his birthday as well. I adore the cheesy, lovey decorations. I can’t help myself.

He is a Reese’s lover, so I’m making him this chocolate peanut butter cake on Saturday, when we’ll have a couple friends over to watch the UFC fights, that he of course chose as his way to celebrate. I don’t mind one bit! Having some friends over will get that over the top, but OMG, delicious looking cake gone faster, so you know, we don’t eat the entire thing by Monday.

Coffee Date Pudding Cake_2

 I did still want him to have a treat for his actual birthday though. What’s a birthday without one? So, I made him this Coffee Date Pudding Cake for when we get home from dinner tonight. It’s grain and refined sugar free. It’s dense, sweet, and decadent. The coffee caramel sauce is dangerous. You can definitely just enjoy a spoonful on it’s own as dessert after the cake disappears from your kitchen.

Coffee Date Pudding Cake_3

What you need

  • 2/3 cup almond flour
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons tapioca flour
  • 1/4 cup organic honey or agave
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 cup pitted dates, chopped
  • 1 cup hot, brewed, strong coffee
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 tablespoons almond butter
  • coffee caramel sauce
    • 1 can full fat coconut milk
    • 1/2 cup organic honey or maple syrup
    • pinch of salt
    • 1 tablespoon coconut oil
    • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
    • 1/4 strong brewed coffee

Make it

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Grease a spingform baking pan with coconut oil.
  3. Bake sweet potato in the oven or microwave. Let cool and mash.
  4. In a bowl, cover chopped dates with hot brewed coffee and let sit 15 minutes, then add baking soda.
  5. Mix almond, tapioca flour, and baking powder in a bowl, set aside.
  6. In standing mixer, using the flat paddle, mix sweet potato, eggs, vanilla, and sweetener.
  7. Add in the coffee and dates mixture.
  8. Add flour mixture and continue to mix for 30 seconds or so. No need to overdo it.
  9. Spread batter into greased pan and bake for 45-50 minutes minutes or until toothpick comes out clean.
  10. While the cake is cooking, make the coffee caramel sauce. I used this exact recipe, but added 1/4 cup of strong coffee as well.
  11. Once cake is complete, poke holes (I used the end of a wooden spoon) about an inch apart in the cake.
  12. Pour half of the coffee caramel sauce over the cake and let it soak for at least 20 minutes before serving.
  13. Top with additional coffee caramel sauce if desired. Enjoy!

Note: Cake keeps longer refrigerated. You can just warm with the coffee caramel sauce when ready to serve.

Coffee Date Pudding Cake_4

This recipe was inspired by Martha Stewart’s Sticky Toffee Pudding and Paleo Fondue’s Sweet Potato Blondies

What are your plans for Valentine’s Day this year?
Dinner, Nosh

Lemon & Artichoke Crackling Chicken Alfredo

January 28, 2015
Lemon & Artichoke Crackling Chicken Alfredo_1

I’m really enjoying the kitchen experiments while doing this 21 day sugar detox. It’s fun trying out new recipes and seeing which is a keeper and which we won’t be trying again. Now the mess of said experiments, not so much. Too many dishes!

I thought I’d post a week by week recap of how things are going, but I decided to change the plan (I make my own rules, right?) and do a two-for-one next week and then a final post when this is over. I don’t want to bore you with too many “what I ate posts.” So far though, this little adventure has been interesting and an eye-opener, but I do wish it wasn’t three weeks long. I’m ready to make some changes for the long term and kind of want to skip right to it! But, I know I can’t just yet, so onward we go.

I’ve been scouring the program’s book, Pinterest, and the internet, finding lots of wonderful recipes to try. Most Paleo recipes fit this detox if you omit the allowed sugars and some fruits, so I’ve been really into those too. After this is over, I’ll have a decent collection of meals to keep around for a more balanced week.

The weekends are my favorite for more elaborate meals, so on Friday night,  dinner was inspired by the book’s Chicken with Artichokes and Olives. I had been dying to try out Nom Nom Paleo’s Cracklin’ Chicken and wanted a sauce for the spaghetti squash also on the menu, so that’s how this Lemon & Artichoke Crackling Chicken Alfredo came to be.

Lemon & Artichoke Crackling Chicken Alfredo

What you need

Cracklin’ Chicken:

(I halved the original recipe and tweaked it a tad. See link below.)

  • 4 bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs
  • 1/2 tbsp. ground sea salt
  • 1 tsp. unsalted butter
  • 1/4 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon coriander

Lemon & Artichoke Bake:

  • 2 cups canned artichoke hearts
  • 1 cup green olives (or a blend of green w/ kalamata)
  • 1/4 cup olive juice from olives
  • Small bunch of scallions
  • 1 lemon
  • 1 tsp. cumin
  • 2 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1 tsp. ground coriander
  • 1/4 tsp. ground sea salt
  • 1 tsp. red chili flakes (optional)
  • 2 tbsp. butter

“Alfredo sauce” 

  • 1 cup heavy coconut cream (I used Trader Joe’s)
  • 2 Tbsp. unsalted butter
  • 4 tsp. almond flour (or the tapioca or arrowroot she suggests)
  • 1 tsp Garlic Powder or more to taste
  • 1 tsp. chili powder
  • 1 tsp. ground sea salt
  • Pepper to taste

Spaghetti Squash

Make it
  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
  2. Slice spaghetti squash in half, lengthwise and scoop out the seeds. Place both halves face down on a baking sheet and cook for 35-45 minutes, or until you can easily pierce through the skin with a fork or knife.
  3. While the squash bakes, grease a casserole dish with unsalted butter or ghee. Add the artichokes, olives, and olive juice to the dish.
  4. Cut you lemon in half. Thinly slice one half and add the juice of the other to the veggies. Lay the slice on top, along with the scallions.
  5. Sprinkle seasonings over casserole and bake for 35 minutes, checking to make sure they are tender enough and adding time if necessary.
  6. Meanwhile, prepare chicken according to the recipe‘s directions, except include the modifications and spice mixture given above. Allow to cool slightly once finished.
  7. In a saucepan, over medium heat, combine the coconut cream, butter, almond flour, and seasonings, whisking the entire time until is thickens slightly and is heated through.
  8. Use forks to scoop and separate the flesh of the spaghetti squash into the saucepan with the “alfredo.” Mix to thoroughly combine with sauce.
  9. Slice the chicken and lay over “pasta” on a large serving plate or in a casserole dish. Surround with the baked vegetables. Enjoy!

Lemon & Artichoke Crackling Chicken Alfredo

 

This recipes was adapted from The 21-Day Sugar Detox: Bust Sugar & Carb Cravings Naturally’s Chicken with Artichoke’s and Olives, Nom Nom Paleo’s Cracklin’ Chicken, and Brittany Angell’s Fettucine Alredo.

 

Dinner, Lunch, Nosh

Paleo Holubtsi (Cabbage Roll) Soup

January 21, 2015
Paleo Holubtsi (Cabbage Roll) Soup

Big batches of soup are the best this time of year. Especially hearty soups. So, when I did my prepping for week one of the 21- Day Sugar Detox, I knew a stock pot of warm goodness was in order. I gave Adrian two choices, one because I am notoriously indecisive, and two because I like to make sure he has something he likes for work, so he doesn’t make a run for Taco Bell or McDonald’s. The response was a no-brainer for him and he chose cabbage roll soup. He is Ukranian and stuffed cabbage is quite a popular meal in his family, so I gave this recipe the Ukranian name for cabbage rolls, Holubsti. Holubsti traditionally has more rice than meat, but since rice isn’t an option right now, I subbed cauliflower to compensate for the texture and I kept a decent portion of meat for the protein. No one likes a hangry friend!

Paleo Holubtsi (Cabbage Roll) Soup
 What you need
  • 2 lbs. meatloaf mix
  • 1 yellow onion
  • 3 cloves of garlic
  • 10 oz. bag shredded cabbage (~ 4 cups)
  • 2 cups riced cauliflower
  • 1 tsp. chili powder
  • 1/4 tsp paprika
  • 1/2 tsp. salt (or more to taste)
  • 1/2 tsp. pepper (or more to taste)
  • 1 28 oz can crushed tomatoes in tomato puree (check for added sugars)
  • 4 cups organic chicken stock
Make it
  1. In a large stock pot, brown meatloaf mix with the onion and garlic.
  2. Drain excess grease and return to pot.
  3. Add seasoning, riced cauliflower, shredded cabbage, and crushed tomatoes. Stir and cook over medium high, for about 5 minutes.
  4. Add chicken stock and bring to a boil.
  5. Reduce heat and let soup simmer for 30 minutes. Enjoy!

Paleo Holubtsi (Cabbage Roll) Soup

Have you tried recreating any family or cultural recipes to fit a new diet or preference? How did it go?
Dinner, Lunch, Nosh

Blood Orange Champagne Vinaigrette

January 14, 2015
Blood Orange Champagne Vinaigrette

Over the holidays, we had champagne for a few occasions at the house because who doesn’t love bubbly? Every time we have it though, we are always left with a quarter of a bottle here, or half a bottle there. Usually I toss it. Flat champagne is no fun. This time though, thanks to good old Pinterest, I had a plan! There couldn’t be an easier way to use it up with absolutely no effort! You can leave the champagne out, in a jar or any container really, leave it uncovered, or add some cheesecloth to keep out bugs in cases of warmer weather, and make champagne vinegar. Then forget about it for anywhere between a few weeks to a few months. See? Easy!

Once the vinegar is ready, you can use it a number of ways. I chose to try it out in a dressing using my favorite produce this time of year, blood oranges. They are so pretty. Sometimes I feel guilty eating them, but then I don’t because they’re tasty too. I snagged a bag of Moro blood oranges, with the most vibrant hues, at Trader Joe’s for $2.49. Sold! I’ve been eating them as snacks, much like my prior obsession with clementines, but really wanted to use that color to make this beautiful Blood Orange Champagne Vinaigrette. It makes eating healthy as part of my resolutions all the easier. Appealing food is just more enjoyable.

Blood Orange Champagne Vinaigrette

What you need
  • 3 Moro blood oranges
  • 2/3 cup champagne vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons whole grain Dijon mustard
  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground pepper

Optional: If you’d like a little less tang, add a bit of honey. I left it out because I like tangy vinaigrettes.

Make it
  • In a bowl or jar, (I used a 5 cup glass measuring cup) combine all of the ingredients and whisk well. You can alternatively whisk everything together and slowly add the olive oil or even blend all the ingredient to emulsify it, but I like the separation and just shake the bottle up before adding it to salads. Keep refrigerated.

Blood Orange Champagne Vinaigrette

Breakfast, Brunch, Nosh

Strawberry & Goat Cheese Baked French Toast

January 7, 2015
Strawberry Goat Cheese Baked French Toast_Table

This cold knocked me down pretty hard. I was out for the count most of the weekend, dragging myself off of the couch for all of four hours to have our friends over to the house to watch the UFC fights instead of our original plan to head to this gastropub we love that airs them. Needless to say, I headed to bed before the main event. I did get to watch four movies in a weekend though and that never happens, so there’s always a positive side, right?

Back on New Years Eve, we had a small get together, and I made up a cheese and charcuterie spread on our table. I used parchment paper as a table runner, then wrote out the names of the different meats and cheeses down the length of the table. I garnished it with some olives, peppers, dried fruit, fig spread, pretzels, crackers, and baguette rounds.

Like always, I had a lot of leftovers, including a freezer bag of the baguette rounds. Once I started feeling a bit better, I headed to the kitchen to do something about them. I was antsy with cabin fever, craving a comforting breakfast, and eager to not waste an entire baguette. Breakfast and creating something new always boosts my mood.

This Strawberry & Goat Cheese Baked French Toast is not too sweet and the goat cheese adds a nice contrast to the dish. Broiling the top gives it an almost caramely texture that I love. Oh, and of course there was bacon.

Strawberry & Goat Cheese Baked French Toast

Strawberry & Goat Cheese Baked French Toast

Strawberry & Goat Cheese Baked French Toast

Strawberry & Goat Cheese Baked French Toast

What you need
  • About 48 baguette rounds (1/2 inch slices)
  • 3 cups unsweetened almond/coconut milk blend
  • 7  large eggs
  • 1/2 Tbsp. vanilla extract
  • 2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1 jar (15.25 oz or ~ 1 1/2 cups) Polaner All Fruit strawberry preserves (or another of your choice)
  • 3 Tbsp. orange juice
  • 4 oz. goat cheese
Make it
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F
  2. Lightly beat eggs, vanilla extract, and cinnamon in a large mixing bowl
  3. Whisk in milk, until well combined
  4. In a greased casserole dish (9×13 or similar), lay one layer of baguette rounds
  5. Spoon eggs mixture over first layer, leaving enough for the next layers
  6. Continue until all bread has been used. Press down lightly on the bread, so that all of the mixture can be absorbed.
  7. You can optionally let this sit anywhere from 30 minutes to overnight to soak up more of the mixture. (I let mine sit for two hours, while Adrian was out running errands)
  8. Before you bake it, add preserves and orange juice to a small saucepan over medium and allow it to thin a bit for pouring (3-5 minutes)
  9. Pour preserves over top of the casserole
  10. Slice or crumble the goat cheese and top the french toast with it
  11. Cover the casserole with tinfoil and bake for 30 minutes
  12. Remove tinfoil and bake for 10 more minutes
  13. Now broil the top until the cheese browns a bit. (6 minutes for how I have it)
  14. Let cool, top with syrup if desired, and enjoy!

Strawberry & Goat Cheese Baked French Toast

Does a weekend “wasted” frustrate you as much as it does me or do you go with the flow and enjoy the down time?
Breakfast, Brunch, Nosh

Cheesy Grits, Bacon, & Asparagus Frittata

December 31, 2014
Cheesy Grits, Bacon, & Asparagus Frittata

Yay, New Years Eve! Our last day of 2014. I’m really looking forward to good food, good friends, and all the champagne punch I’m going to make. We’re also doing a beer tasting countdown, where we all try one winter beer for each month of the year. It should be a great evening and the comfort of celebrating at midnight in our own home makes it even better for me.

I couldn’t have been more lucky in 2014, but I am still very excited for 2015. In 2014, we bought a new house, got married, and got our puppy, but there’s something about a new year’s fresh start that always brings me optimism and glee. I plan to share my resolutions… but first, I want to bring you breakfast for tomorrow (or brunch, depending on how much punch you’ll be having!)

Cheesy Grits, Bacon, & Asparagus Frittata

So, Adrian goes on kicks with food. He loves having something over and over until he tires of it. We’re very different this way because I would almost never make the same thing twice (unless it’s a breakfast or lunch staple) if it weren’t for him. Now, I try to switch up his kicks, while still giving him what he wants.

Cheesy Grits, Bacon, & Asparagus Frittata

One of his recent benders has been grits. I’ve only recently tried grits for the first time. It was always just a Southern staple to me that didn’t seem all that appealing… that is until I had a taste and actually really enjoyed them! They’re versatile in that you can prepare the dish savory to sweet and I’m definitely a fan of that. Adrian has been enjoying cheesy grits with eggs for our weekend breakfasts, so I wanted to come up with another way to bring them to the table. Hello, Cheesy Grits, Bacon, & Asparagus Frittata and welcome to the new year!

Cheesy Grits, Bacon, & Asparagus Frittata

It sounds kinda weird, right? Trust me, it’s not. The cheesy grits act as a faux crust, putting a classic frittata right over the edge. If you’ve never tried grits before, try them this way. Oh, and you should probably serve it to the guests you’ll be partying with tonight too if they stay over. You can thank me tomorrow morning, after your leftover-champagne mimosa!

What you need
  • 6 eggs
  • 1 cup quick cooking grits
  • 1 1/4 cup sharp cheddar cheese (I used sharp white)
  • 1/2 cup Monterey Jack cheese
  • 1 lb. center cut bacon
  • 1/2 fresh asparagus bundle
  • 1/2 of a large yellow onion
  • 1/2 cup whole milk (or milk of choice)
  • 1/4-1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1 tsp. whole grain Dijon mustard
  • Salt and pepper to taste
Make it
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Prepare grits according to package, but cook 3-5 minutes longer to thicken. Once finished, add 1 cup of the cheddar and the 1/2 cup of Monterey Jack cheese and mix well. Set aside.
  3. Chop bacon and cook over medium in a large pan. Once bacon begins browning, add in the onion, and cook until translucent and bacon is cooked, but not crispy. In the last minute of cooking, add the asparagus.
  4. Remove bacon mixture from heat and drain grease.
  5. Whisk eggs, milk, cayenne, mustard, salt and pepper in a medium bowl.
  6. In a greased pie dish, lay a layer of cheesy grits in the bottom.
  7. Cover grits with bacon and asparagus.
  8. Pour eggs over top and push down any asparagus poking through. Sprinkle the rest of the cheddar on top.
  9. Bake frittata for 30 minutes or until the frittata’s center doesn’t jiggle.
  10. Let cool and serve. Enjoy!

Cheesy Grits, Bacon, & Asparagus Frittata

 What are your plans for tonight? Have you already made a list of resolutions for the new year?
Dinner, DIY, Monday Musings, Recently

Monday Musings: Fancy (Without the Fuss) Gift Wrapping Ideas

December 22, 2014
Countdown to Christmas

Two and a half days until Christmas! Yippee! I’ve been keeping track with this nifty Christmas Countdown. The Christmas gifts have been bought, the decorating is done, the cookies have been baked. Ahh, feels nice to be in a good spot. The only things left to do are spot clean the house, prepare for our Christmas guests, and wrap, wrap, wrap! I’ve collected a bunch of fancy gift wrapping ideas to keep things interesting before ripping the presents apart!

  • First is a gift wrapping tutorial by Apartment Therapy to show off your awesome skills. This is one thing I have never quite gotten down, but I’ve always hoped my gift receivers would think my extra folded paper in the creases under tons of tape was charming. Gift bag anyone?
  • Speaking of bagging those presents, I thought Paper and Stitch’s super easy Ink Blot Gift Bags were the perfect flare to add along with the tissue paper and bows.
  • Looking to use up all those last inches of paper left from last year? A Beautiful Mess came up with wonderful ways to use scraps for creative gift wrapping!
  • DIY Acrylic Gift Tags from Design Sponge are a great way to personalize your presents with style.
  • Mashable has 25 ways to hand-personalize all your goodies! The first one uses washi tape… See, I told you it was amazing!
In other news
  • I tried this trick for falling asleep faster, and though I don’t know if I beat the minute mark, it definitely had me snoozing way sooner than usual!
  • Happy Winter Soltstice! The shorter and shorter days cut into my productivity, so I am welcoming the longer days to come! Here’s a bit of science behind our seasons.
On the menu

And just for fun, I spruced up one of Archer’s latest photos because we’re both nuts about Christmas!

Archer Santa

 

 

I hope you have the happiest of holidays! Do you have any neat wrapping ideas or embarrassing Christmas photos of your pets to share?
Breakfast, Brunch, Dessert, Nosh

Darling Clementine Skillet Cake

December 18, 2014
Candied Clementines_2

A tradition I adore, but isn’t typically practiced in my area, is finding a clementine in the toe of your stocking on Christmas day. They are the cutest little gifts and fit perfectly in the palm of your hand. How sweet!

Darling Clementine Skillet Cake

Did you know clementines are the result of an accidental pollination between a tangerine and sweet orange, found by Father Clement Rodier in the gardens of his orphanage in Algeria?

Darling Clementine Skillet Cake

I was interested in how the Christmas clementine tradition began and was brought back to the story of Saint Nicholas, formerly Bishop Nicholas, of Turkey. There are many variations, but if you haven’t heard them, the story goes there was a man with three daughters, too poor for dowries to marry them off. Bishop Nicholas was known to be a generous giver. He visited the home at night and threw a bag of coins (sometimes pictured as gold balls) down the chimney, landing them in the stockings left to dry on the fireplace. These coins became represented by the clementines children find in their stockings today.

Darling Clementine Skillet Cake

This lovely tradition is one I plan to bring to my family when we have children. (Even if they won’t be as excited about it as I will be!)

Darling Clementine Skillet Cake

I have been buying clementines all season and wanted to find a use for them other than snacking on them whole. I’ve also been wanting to try out different creations in my new skillet, so without further ado, here is my Darling Clementine Skillet Cake. Oh, my darling, clementine!

Darling Clementine Skillet Cake

Candying the fruit is surprisingly easy and it comes out wonderful!

Darling Clementine Skillet Cake

What you need
  • Candied clementines
    • 2 clementines, washed, ends removed, and thinly sliced
    • 2 oz. Cointreau (or another orange-flavored liqueur)
    • 1/4 cup water
    • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 3 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 3 clementines, peeled and pureed (about 1 cup)
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2/3 granulated sugar
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp ginger
  • 1/8 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp lemon zest
Make it

Candied Clementines:

  1. Combine Cointreau, water, and sugar in deep frying pan
  2. Over medium heat, stir mixture until the sugar is dissolved
  3. Add the clementines to the pan in a single layer
  4. Allow the clementines to cook until the syrup evaporates some and the clementines begin to crystallize, flipping them halfway through (this will take about 20 minutes start to finish)
  5. Remove clementines from pan and place on greased dish to cool

Cake:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees
  2. In a cast iron skillet*, melt the butter and remove from heat
  3. Sprinkle the brown sugar on top
  4. Arrange candied clementines over the brown sugar
  5. Mix the dry ingredients in one bowl and the wet in another
  6. Add the wet ingredients to the dry
  7. Blend well, either by hand or in a mixer
  8. Pour the batter over the clementines and brown sugar
  9. Bake at 350 for 25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean
  10. Let cool for 10 minutes, then run a knife around edge if it needs to be loosened
  11. Cover your skillet with a large plate and flip

*I used a 12-inch skillet. If you are using a 10-inch, increase the baking time to about 40 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Then, let sit for 20 minutes before flipping the cake over.

Darling Clementine Skillet Cake
What’s your favorite holiday tale? Do you have any traditions you’ve always admired?
Dinner, DIY, Monday Musings, Recently

Monday Musings: DIY Gift Ideas

December 15, 2014
Monday Musings

10 days ’til Christmas! So exciting, but I still have lots to do. My face can be found under procrastinator in the dictionary, that’s how bad it is. I have my decorating done and have been watching lots of Christmas movies and baking lots of goodies, but just haven’t gotten on board with the shopping yet, and that’s kind of important now that we’re under the two-week mark! It’s been gray and chilly lately and we’ve had some back-to-back holiday parties, so when I have time to spare, the movies and baking just won over the crowds this time of year. I also need to come up with a dessert for Christmas Eve to bring to my mom’s and I need a menu for somewhat late plans to host overnight guests on Christmas day. Eek!

Even with only ten days to go, I want to stick with adding some personality to my gift choices by making a few myself, so I hit up my Pinterest (Let’s follow each other!) and looked through my recent favs. These are great ideas if you are looking to add some charm to your presents this year too.

DIY Gift Ideas:
  • I love this tutorial for DIY Marquee Letters. I want to make them for myself for a makeover project in 2015, but know that these would definitely be popular for many of the girls on my list!
  • This little Gift Wrapping Starter Kit is perfect for college goers or those on your list who just moved into their first place.
  • A Simple Light Up Shadow Box would be a lovely gift for almost anyone, since you can use a fond memory photo or a couple’s photo that you adore for your friend or family member.
  • Washi tape is so versatile and can be given as a stocking stuffer to make this, this, or these awesome wall accents!
In other news:
  • The last sequential date in at least twenty years landed two births at 10:11 on 12/13/14! There were also many, many weddings. How neat!
  • Lena Dunham’s gift to Taylor Swift was just too cute not to share. I need to find an affordable option like it on Etsy for my pet-loving friends!
On the menu:
  • I saw this Honey and Lemon Roasted Pork Loin yesterday and meant to make it, but my pork loin didn’t thaw early enough for me to marinate it as long as I wanted to… So, tonight it is!
 Are you already set for Christmas or do you have items on your list left to tackle yet? 
Drink, Nosh

Salted Peanut Butter Latte

December 11, 2014
Salted Peanut Butter Latte_1

My coworkers and I love sneaking off to Starbucks once in a while on our lunch break. Who couldn’t use a mid-week-pick-me-up? So, last week, I tried the Chestnut Praline Latte and loved it. I love most of their lattes though… except mochas. I can’t even rationalize this with myself because I’m obsessed with chocolate, but not mochas. They just never do it for me.

On our way back to the office, my friend Kate made a great point. She is the ultimate peanut butter lover and wanted to know why Starbucks didn’t offer a peanut butter latte? At first, it sounded weird. Peanut butter and coffee? I could totally see a peanut butter mocha being popular because everyone loves Reese’s, but again, I’m not a fan of the mochas. I got thinking and knew I just had to try making one. That’s where this Salted Peanut Butter Latte comes in.

The sauce is the star in this recipe. It has a caramel consistency, but an obvious peanut butter presence. Add the salt and you have a new level of peanut butter infatuation. I recommend trying it in other dessert recipes too or maybe even top your pancakes with it. I plan to use it in blondies!

Salted Peanut Butter Latte Recipe CardTips:

  • Feel free to use any milk you’d like. Whole milk will be the creamiest, but if you’d like a lighter version, skim milk or almond milk will work just as well.
  • If you are not using espresso, substitute about  1/4- 1/2 cup (1/2 if you like 2 shots normally) of strong coffee in its place.
  • If you are unable to steam the milk, just heat it up on the stove top or in the microwave. It will still be yummy, you just won’t get the foam on top to lay the syrup drizzle on, but that’s what whipped cream is for!

Warning: This will come out caramel-y and sweet. It is just as addictive, if not more addictive, than eating peanut butter straight from the jar with a spoon.

What’s your favorite hot beverage to indulge in?