Veggie Quinoa Breakfast Bowl

There are times when magical things are created out of desperation. When a lack of the usual ingredients leads to the unearthing of dusty jars and bottles buried in the depths of cupboards or stored on the highest shelves. Sniffing and tasting lead to modest, then less modest additions, followed by a dash of this and that, until a perfect balance is achieved. The end result is a new, inspiring dish. A reminder that creating food for yourself and others is an amazing, empowering experience.

And then there are the days when I eat oatmeal.

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Beet Hash Breakfast Wrap

Happy New Year, everyone!

The start of a new year is an interesting thing. In the past, I’ve found this time a little……annoying. There’s all this talk of resolutions and exercise and salads, to the point where it can seem pushy, and perhaps a little deluded. But this year, I don’t really mind it so much, and I’m not even sure why. Maybe it’s because this year, I have some serious goals. Ones that will require focus, sacrifice, and, dare I say, resolve. Or perhaps I’ve come to appreciate this cyclical experience we all seem to share — one which becomes increasingly apparent as our calendar year ends and a new one begins. After the chaos and glitz and indulgence of the holidays has faded away, it seems only natural to take a moment to reflect and detox (physically and mentally), and ponder what the next cycle might bring. Perhaps I’ve come to appreciate how comforting it can be to know that — though our reflections on the past and hopes for the future may differ — we are all still looking both backward and forward together. Or maybe I just really need a salad. (Scratch that last “maybe” — I could definitely use a salad. Many salads.)

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Savory Kale, Garlic, & Cauliflower Purée Pop Tarts

A few things occur to me as I begin to write this post. One, this main photo looks an awful lot like the monster cookie stack picture from two posts ago — derp. Two, these pop tarts, while very deserving of being shared ASAP to avoid depriving the world of the recipe a moment longer, have nothing to do with Thanksgiving. Three, just over a week ago I began a weekly rewind series with a mission to begin posting more frequently than once a week. And here I am with a new post……one whole week later. (My focus was derailed mid-week by circumstances beyond my control. But I’m back on track, and I’m ready to make up for lost time by cramming in two posts, back-to-back. So today, we talk pop tarts. Then tomorrow, a slightly belated weekly rewind in the form of a Thanksgiving round-up!)

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Pumpkin Doughnut Muffins, Filled with Nutella

Yup. I warned you these were coming! As if pumpkin doughnut muffins weren’t tasty enough on their own, I needed to fill them with nutella. Sometimes cramming as much delicious as possible into one treat just seems like the right thing to do.

This decision, quite frankly, was for my own good. Apparently I have this problem with nutella where, uh, I can’t stop eating it. I don’t even want to tell you how much had disappeared by the end of this photo shoot. “Oh look, there’s some excess nutella on this plate, might as well clean it up with my fingers.” “And oh no, now this knife is covered in it too. I certainly wouldn’t want to waste it by washing it down the sink!” “Oh and of course I will eat this bread covered in nutella.” That went on for 20 minutes. I spent the next half an hour cursing my lack of will power and the serious serious stomach ache it had caused, while slowly sinking out of my chair, onto the floor. At that moment, I never wanted to see nutella again. I even managed to climb back up into my chair to put out a call to local facebook friends to please PLEASE take some off my hands. But the nausea soon subsided, and the nutella cravings returned.

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Homemade Nutella

I am kind of freaking out at the moment. In a good way. Freaking out because I have a ton of posts lined up, and I want to show them all to you NOW. I sat at my computer this morning, downing coffee and staring at all of my unpublished image folders, contemplating which one to choose. Should I sneak some syrup from one of the three shrubs that are steeping in my pantry at the moment, and photograph it before the season has passed for its star fruit? Or should I snap some pictures of the recently bottled homemade version of everyone’s favorite spicy sauce? They were all so tempting, but this nutella won out in the end. And that’s because there’s a follow-up post. One that involves nutella contained within something. And pumpkin. And maybe also the words “doughnut” and “muffin.” OH YES. Pumpkin fever is upon us, and I’m ready to embrace the madness. So please, join me — let’s loosen our belts, hide our scales, and ready…set…TREATS!

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