Friday, May 22, 2015

honey vanilla spritzer

have i mentioned that my two best friends are pregnant?
let's just say that my mockail game is strong right now!

this honey vanilla spritzer is totally different and worth a try.
i served it at marcy's baby shower last weekend
and since multiple people asked for the recipe, i thought i'd share with you all :)

the honey and vanilla definitely make this lean towards a sweeter drink,
think along the lines of a vanilla italian soda.
the amount of lime you add can take this in a completely different direction.
for me, i think i would have increased the lime quite a bit to give it a fresher,
brighter flavor profile, but feel free to follow the recipe exactly for something sweet and refreshing.

and yes, i did try it with vodka - don't judge me!
it was great. also think it might be tasty with tequila.

also: don't be alarmed by the little vanilla beans floating around in your drink!
i think it gives it character :)

recipe via martha stewart

2/3 cup honey
1/2 cup water
1/4 fresh lime juice
4 cups chilled seltzer


1. bring honey, water, and vanilla bean to a simmer in a saucepan.
cook, stirring, until honey dissolves. let cool completely.
strain through a fine sieve (there will be some vanilla seeds).

if the thought of these floating in your drink is not to your liking, 
just strain through a coffee filter!

2. stir in lime juice. divide among 4 ice-filled glasses.
top with seltzer.

for the party, i followed the same directions, but just combined in a large pitcher instead.

Thursday, May 21, 2015

pumpkin pecan granola

i love granola, but just can't justify the super high calorie, high sugar stuff you buy at the store.
for those of you that have tried your hand at homemade granola, you know it's super easy, 
tastes delicious, and is much healthier than the store bought stuff.

i know it's not the time of year you're normally thinking about pumpkin pie spice 
and pumpkin puree, but you'll change your mind as soon as you smell this baking in your oven!

the recipe is easy and delicious.
i've been eating this on top of my oatmeal and yogurt all week.

{this first made an appearance at marcy's baby shower this past weekend!}

recipe via sprouted kitchen

makes about 3 cups

2 1/2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
sea salt
3/4 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
1/3 cup grade B maple syrup
1/3 cup pumpkin puree
2 cups old fashioned rolled oats
1/2 cup raw pecan pieces
3 tablespoons sesame seeds
1/2 cup crimson or golden raisins


1. preheat oven to 325 degrees.

2. in a large mixing bowl, combine olive oil, 1/2 teaspoon salt,
the pumpkin pie spice, maple syrup, and pumpkin puree and whisk to combine.

3. add oats, pecans, and sesame seeds and stir until evenly coated.

4. spread mixture on a baking sheet covered with parchment paper, 
keeping some of the clusters of oats intact.
bake granola until dry and light brown in color, 35-45 minutes,
stirring every 10 minutes, making sure no spots getting extra toasted.

5. remove from oven and allow granola to cool a few minutes. add raisins and toss to mix. 
add another pinch or two of salt if needed. cool completely before storing. 
can be stored in an airtight container for up to 2 weeks.

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

gluten free five spice muffins

i can't say that i've had much experience with gluten free cooking,
but because i have lots of friends with food allergies
AND i'm always up for trying something new,
i tried my hand at these gluten free muffins this past weekend.
they made an appearance at my dear friend's baby shower,
which you'll see on the blog tomorrow :)

i have to admit, i was skeptical...
a sweet potato? olive oil? maple syrup?

you guys - they were pretty freaking good.
in fact, i thought they were delicious!

would make them again in a heartbeat, and would double the recipe next time.

recipe via it's all good

yields 12 muffins

1 large sweet potato
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk
3/4 good quality maple syrup, 
plus 2 tablespoons for brushing the muffins
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups gluten free flour
(if the flour doesn't include xanthan gum, add 1 teaspoon)
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoons baking soda
1 1/2 tablespoons chinese five-spice powder
you can buy this pre-made or mix it up yourself
1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt


1. preheat oven to 400 degrees
prick sweet potato 7-10 times with a knife.
bake until soft (when a knife can cut through with zero resistance), about 1 hour.
set the sweet potato aside until it's completely cool.

2. peel sweet potato, discard skin and mash in a mixing bowl.
whisk olive oil, almond milk, maple syrup, and vanilla into the sweet potato.

3. in a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, 
five-spice powder, and salt. fold the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients.

4. line a 12-cup muffin tin with paper liners and evenly distribute the muffin batter among the cups.
bake for 20-25 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean, 
brushing the tops with the extra maple syrup during the last 5 minutes of baking. 
let the muffins cool before serving



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