stranger things perler beads.

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My son is obsessed with stranger things. he watched the series twice in a two week span. We had some pretty scorching hot days here the past week or so, so indoor activities it was! We were searching around on the internet for some perler bead ideas and came across something like these and just started sorting the colors and making these come to life. Is it just me, or is sorting all those colors pretty theraputic? Can’t wait for the new season to start oct 27!

 

 

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green velvet cupcakes.

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A few weeks ago I took my son to see green day, so that called for some GREEN VELVET CUPCAKES!

Basically to make these, take your favorite red velvet cupcakes, and swap out the red food coloring for green!

Make sure to top with cream cheese frosting! 

 

asian green beans and kale.

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This is an easy dinner or lunch, full of flavor! You can sub with other green vegetables too – i made it one time with broccoli because I ate all the green beans and wanted more! I served it with white rice, and felt like I was eating chinese take out. I made some tofu to go along side it, and included the recipe below as well.

Green beans, trimmed and washed
Kale
1-2 T soy sauce
1 T siracha
3-4 cloves garlic, minced
Slivered almonds
white rice
Coconut oil

Add about a tspn or so of coconut oil in a skillet. Add green beans and kale and cook for a few minutes. You want the green beans to still have crunch – Add the minced garlic, and cook about a minute more. Add the soy sauce and siracha and cook about another minute or so. Serve with rice, and top with slivered almonds.

TOFU
12 ounces extra-firm tofu, pressed
2 tablespoons soy sauce
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon siracha

Cut the tofu into triangles and Marinate in the above ingedients. I put in airfryer for about 10-12 minutes at 370 degrees. Alternately, you can bake in oven 400 degrees, 15 minutes, flip and bake 10 minutes more.

bourbon apple pie.

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I made this pie for fourth of july this year, and it will be perfect for fall once we go apple picking and have plenty of apples to use up. My husband is a bourbon drinker so we always have some on hand. I served this with some vegan vanilla ice cream and it was out of this world delicious! Bring on fall!

Recipe adpated from here.

1 prepared pie crust

Filling
6-7 apples, sliced thin
juice of 1 lemon
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
2/3 cup lightly packed brown sugar
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon allspice
1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
pinch freshly grated nutmeg
pinch of fresh cracked black pepper
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
2 tablespoons bourbon
2 dashes bitters
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Crumble
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 cup old-fashioned oats
2/3 cup granulated sugar
large pinch of salt
6 tablespoons earth balance, cut into chunks
1/2 cup coarsely chopped pecans
  1. To make the filling, in a medium bowl toss together sliced apples, lemon juice, and granulated sugar. Let it sit for 20 minutes. Add brown sugar, flour, spices, pepper, salt, bourbon, bitters, and vanilla. Toss to evenly coat the pears in the mixture but try to be gently enough as to not bruise the pears too much.
  2. To make the crumble, in a medium bowl whisk together flour, oats, sugar, and salt. Add the earth balance chunks and, using your fingers, work the earth balance into the flour mixture. Quickly break it down into the mixture until well incorporated. Add the pecans and toss to combine.
  3. Place a rack in the center of the oven and preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Set aside.
  4. Get your pie crust ready – Toss a handful (about 1/2 cup) of the topping mixture into the apple mixture and mix gently. Dump the fruit mixture into the pie crust. Top generously with topping mixture. Place on the prepared baking sheet and place in the oven. It’s important to use the middle rack because if the pie is too close to the top of the oven, the pecans will burn quickly.
  5. Bake for 20 minutes then reduce the heat to 375 and bake for another 30 minutes until golden brown and bubbling.
  6. Remove from the oven and cool for 3 hours before serving. This will allow the juices to thicken and rest.
  7. Serve in generous slices with vanilla ice cream.

bucatini with kale and ricotta.

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This pasta was so delicious! and so easy to throw together. I had never had bucatini before this dish, but you can definitely make it with any kind of noodle. Any reason to add Kite Hill ricotta to my dinner is a good meal to me, and dont be shy with the garlic!

Cook pasta, adding kale during last 10 seconds. Drain, reserving ¾ cup of the pasta water.

Heat oil and garlic in a large skillet over medium, stirring often, until garlic is lightly golden, about 4 minutes. Add pasta and kale, Parmesan, red pepper flakes, and reserved pasta water; cook, tossing, until sauce thickens and coats pasta, about 3 minutes. Squeeze fresh lemon juice over pasta. Season with salt and pepper. Top with  kite hill ricotta, and more vegan parm.

#thekindnessrocksproject

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Let me tell you about the kindness rocks project.

The goal is to promote random acts of kindness to people who are least expecting to find it. Paint some rocks that make people smile – add #thekindnessrocksproject to the back of the rock (i found paint them first, then do details in sharpie once rock is dry works best), and go leave them around your neighborhood for others to find.

My neighborhood has a facebook group so when you are ready to drop off rocks, you can let others know, or when you find a rock you can post it to the group.

We sent one batch out into the wild a few weeks ago, and have been on the lookout for more since – no luck in our neighborhood, but last weekend when we went to the city we  parked in a parking garage and after i hit the button at the elevator i looked down and….

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This was waiting for us!

We plan to make more rocks this weekend and spread more love throughout our town!
Let me know if you are planning to join along!

 

emoji party.

Milo is turning 8 this year, and he wanted an emoji themed party! I created this invite a few weeks prior to the day.

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We had 22 kids come play broomball at the local skating rink. I made cake and cupcakes, and the goodie bags had emoji pez, plush emoji keychains and emoji fruit snacks packaged in a little yellow bag.

Milo will only eat cupcakes that I make, but loved this idea to turn cupcakes into a cake. 14 cupcakes fit on this tray, and I had to do a batch and a half of frosting to get it to cover the “cake” nicely. I used fondant for the eyes and smile. Then we had some poop cakes too. Both were a hit with the kids. some even wanted TWO cupcakes! I used recipes from vegan cupcakes take over the world

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The party was chaos, but the kids had alot of fun!

ricotta stuffed portabellas.

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I am obsessed with Kite Hill products, especially the ricotta cheese. I have made lasagna with it, and I also have topped some polenta with it. I had half a tub left, and was trying to figure out what to do with it, so I decided to stuff some portabellas! I whipped this up and ate it for lunch and felt like I was eating something so fancy!

2-3 portabella mushrooms
1/2 tub kite hill ricotta
fresh spinach
vegan parmesan
garlic
Vegan sausage (I used field roast and diced it up)
Pasta sauce
salt and pepper
balsamic vinegar (optional)

Chop your spinach. Add to ricotta: spinach, vegan sausage, garlic, salt, pepper. Lightly toss your portabella in a little bit of balsamic vinegar (optional); season with salt and pepper. Fill portabella with ricotta mixture, top with some vegan parmesan and bake at 400 degrees for about 25 minutes.

Top with spaghetti sauce and enjoy!

spaghetti carbonara with shitake bacon.

 

spag.jpgI had seen this recipe floating around on the internet for quite some time now, and added it to my list to make. Glad I did. this was EASY and delicious. We served some roasted broccoli with it. You would think you slaved for hours making this dish – when it really comes together in no time!

SHIIITAKE BACON

  • 1 pound shiitake mushrooms,
    trimmed and thinly sliced
    (about ¼ inch thick)
  • 2 T olive oil
  • 2 T soy sauce
  • 1 tspn maple syrup
  • 1/2 tspn liquid smoke
  • 1/2 teaspoons sea salt
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

PASTA CARBONARA

  • 1 pound long pasta
    (spaghetti, linguine, fettuccine)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 14 ounces soft tofu
  • ½ cup water
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 2½ teaspoons sea salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • Chopped fresh Italian parsley for garnish
  • vegan Parmesan Topping

For the shiitake bacon:
Preheat the oven to 375°F.

Mix together the ingredients for the mushrooms. Slice mushrooms long-wise and thin and coat with liquid. Spread them on  a large rimmed baking sheet and bake for about 30 minutes, turning frequently with a spatula, until lightly browned and crisp.

For the pasta:
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add pasta and cook according to package directions. Drain and return to the pot.

Meanwhile, heat oil in a medium skillet over medium heat. Add onion and let cook until soft. Add garlic and let cook a few more minutes. Remove from heat.

In a blender, combine onion, garlic, tofu, water, lemon juice, and salt. Process on high until very smooth, about 2 minutes.

Add sauce to pasta and toss to coat. Season with pepper and add more salt to taste. Let pasta sit for about 5 minutes to allow sauce to thicken slightly. Top with shiitake bacon, parsley, Parmesan topping, if using, and serve.

 

nutty granola.

NUTTYGRANOLAJust another granola recipe I sort of improvised and want to remember – This is great on yogurt with some berries and agave!

2 cups coconut flakes
2 cups oats
1/2 cup pepitas or sunflower seeds
1/2 cup hemp seeds
1 1/2 tspn cinnamon
1/2 tspn salt
1/3 cup coconut oil, melted
1/3 cup maple syrup
2 T nut butter

Preheat oven to 300 degrees.
Mix together all the dry ingredients in a big bowl.
In another bowl, mix together the melted oil, maple syrup and nut butter.
Pour the wet mixture over the dry mixture and mix until everything is well coated.

Spread out on baking sheet and bake 15 min.  Remove and stir and bake 10 min more. Let cool and store in airtight jar.