Archive for the 'Random Tuesdays' Category

Leftover Takeover: Seed Bars Round 2

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I love this shot. It is a baker’s kaleidoscope, and the focus is prime.

This recipe is essentially all the leftover seeds I had in my cupboards + more overripe bananas. They are an extremely easy and healthy snackfast.

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All the kinds of things you need in the middle of November what with the weather and the family and the crazy. For another easy snackfast, see Seed Bars Round 1, which blew my mind this summer. You don’t even have to bake them. Also the first seed bars posts included better quality writing than you have seen out of me for like, the past two months.

Haha better quality writing, as if. Maybe just more writing. We all know that when all else fails, just keep saying more and more words, because that will fix everything, amirite?

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Bye now,

Lauren

Seed Bars

Adapted from Eat Your Greens

1/2 cup whole flax seeds
1 cup shelled sunflower seeds
1/2 cup millet
1/4 cup almonds, roughly chopped
1/4 cup pitted dates, chopped
3 small ripe bananas
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a 9-by-9-inch square pan with parchment.

In a large bowl, combine the oats, seeds, nuts and dried fruit. Place the bananas, vanilla, salt and cinnamon in a bowl and mash until smooth. Pour the banana puree over the oat mixture and stir until all the dry ingredients are evenly moist. Press mixture evenly into the bottom of the pan.

Bake for 30 minutes, until firm and lightly browned on the edges. Let cool completely and cut into 6 bars.

Leftover Takeover: Banana Poppyseed Muffins

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A little reminder of what miniature green things look like for your Monday.

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When life gives you overripe bananas that you can’t finish because you’re busy eating all the Thanksgiving leftovers, it’s time to get to mixing.

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Huckleberry THEREFORE SYMBOL sunken muffins. Decent flavor.

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Post-holiday hanging,

Lauren

Banana Poppyseed Muffins

Adapted from Huckleberry

Thanksgiving Dinner Alternative? Pumpkin Stuffed with Everything Good

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That is the actual name of the recipe, and it is the truth.

It’s already, like, cute and genius to bake a whole pumpkin, but then to stuff it with crusty bread, copious amounts of melty cheese, crispy bacon, savory sausage, sage, thyme, kale, apple chunks and toasted walnuts??

Literally GET OUT.

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You pluck off the top of the wobbly pumpkin, and it’s just like, “Who cares about anything other than this right now? My troubles have flown.”

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And then you dig into it, and everyone just sits in silence because the emotions are profound and overwhelming.

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Also, my friend made a deliciously sweet, smoky butternut squash soup, and it was divine.

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Consider making this gluten free, replacing the bread for lentils, as I did. You can use any combination of stuffing ingredients, too. They are all magic! An alternative to a traditional Thanksgiving dinner?

May you heartily enjoy.

Thankfully,

Lauren

Find the recipe here.

Cookie Swap! Swedish Rye Cookies

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Here’s a sweet little rye cookie to take to all of your cookie swaps this holiday season, brought to you courtesy of the Swedish realm and yours truly.

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It’s a nice departure from Russian tea cakes, no? It has to be cheap to just fly right on over to Scandinavia from Eastern Europe. Everything is so close there.

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More rye flour, because I’m obsessed with its delicious nutty tangy self.

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Sprinkle with some turbinado sugar before putting it in the oven, or dust with powdered sugar post-baking, and enjoy with a cup of something warm. They freeze well, too!

So Europe rn,

Lauren

Swedish Rye Cookies

Adapted from Food52

cup rye flour

cup whole-wheat flour

1/2 teaspoon fine grain sea salt

1/2 cup cream cheese, room temperature

1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature

1/2 cup fine grain natural cane sugar, sifted

Powdered sugar

Line a couple baking sheets with parchment paper.

In a medium-sized bowl combine the flours and salt. Set aside. In an electric mixer (or by hand) beat the cream cheese until light and fluffy, add the butter and do the same, mixing until the two are well combined. Beat in the sugar and mix until well-incorporated. Add the flour mixture to the butter mixture and stir only long enough to combine the two. Turn the dough out onto the counter, knead once or twice to bring it together, shape into a ball, flatten, wrap in plastic and chill it in a refrigerator.

Heat your oven to 350° F degrees. Lightly flour a work surface and roll the dough out to 1/4-inch thickness. Cut into shapes with the cookie cutter of your choice. Place on the prepared baking sheets an inch apart, and bake for six or seven minutes, just until cookies are fragrant, and getting a bit golden at the edges — avoid over-baking or they will come out on the dry side. Allow to cool, and dust cookies with a bit of powdered sugar.

A de-seeded sparkling pomegranate cocktail for mythology lovers and the generally lazy

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This cocktail is dedicated to everyone else in the world who finds de-seeding pomegranates tiresome and unfulfilling. Even with the “hit-with-a-ladle-into-my-hand-over-a-bowl” trick up my sleeve, 9/10 pomegranates are more enjoyable left in Greek mythology.

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This was super refreshing and sparkly, but with a nice autumnal complexity, perfect for this seasonal transition. The only real prep work is the pomegranate reduction, which is simple enough, and the whole thing batches nicely. If you want to make it for a crowd, grab a pitcher.

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Sparkling,

L

Sparkling Pomegranate Cocktail

Adapted from Serious Eats

1 cup 100% pomegranate juice (reduced comes to about 6 tablespoons or 3 ounces)

4 ounces sweet vermouth

2 ounces fresh juice from 2 to 4 limes

16 ounces sparkling wine, Prosecco, Cava or Champagne

4 orange twists, for garnish

In a small saucepan, bring pomegranate juice to a boil over high heat, then reduce to a simmer and cook until reduced to 3 ounces (6 tablespoons), 10 to 15 minutes. Let cool. Store in an airtight container up to 1 month. In a pitcher, add the pomegranate reduction, vermouth and lime juice. Top with sparkling wine and gently stir to combine. To serve, divide between 4 glasses filled with ice. Express orange oil from twists over each drink, then add twists to each glass to garnish.

Task Attraction: Millet Banana Bread

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One conversation I had with a group of friends went approximately like this:

“Would you still hang with me if I was 20% less smart?”

And some dude said, “I don’t know, Lauren…would you be able to cook 20% less well?”

Whatttttttttttt? CHECK. YO SELF. (Actually, I just blinked a little bit.)

Now before all my girls get all up in a huff (because all the dudes are like, “Fair questions, fair question.”), I would just like to present that it is probably not totally anyone’s fault that this question has to come up.

I mean, let’s be real. There is a thing called task attraction, which means that you find someone attractive based on their abilities, like being able to cook. And, when combined with the reward theory of attraction, which means that you are attracted to those who in some way make you feel good, the whole cooking thing can be a devastating combination. I get it. Baking is my half-joke version of how to win friends and influence people, as you well know.

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And I mean, yeah it’s attractive if you’ll mow the lawn and fix the car and do crazy hang time bball shots or whatever other “guy” things you do that make my life better. But I would still hang with you if you did those things 20% less, no question, because there are other important things in life that you’re about!

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I’m not sure I’ve explained very well why I’m kicking you out of my house right now, but will still be friends with you later, but there it is. Task attraction, guys. It’s real.

Lauren

Millet Banana Bread

Find the recipe on smitten kitchen. I opted for 1/4 cup maple syrup instead of 1/3 cup. This is really good banana bread.

Dang it, Huckleberry Round II – Nectarine & Brown Sugar Muffins

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So the blueberry muffins from Huckleberry that wouldn’t dome?

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NEITHER WOULD THESE.

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It could still be my fault. I will still be trying every other recipe in the cookbook.
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L

Nectarine & Brown Sugar Muffins

Adapted from Huckleberry

1 cup whole wheat pastry flour (or regular)

2 tablespoons white whole-wheat flour

3 tablespoons poppy seeds

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon baking powder

2 tablespoons oat flour

1/2 cup Greek yogurt

2 tablespoons whole milk

3/4 cup olive oil

1/2 cup dark brown sugar, packed

1/4 cup granulated sugar

1 teaspoon salt

4 tablespoons butter, melted

1 tablespoon vanilla extract

1 large nectarine, chopped into small chunks

Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit, and line a muffin tin with 12 liners.

Whisk the dry ingredients in a large bowl. Whisk the wet ingredients in a medium bowl. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry, whisking together until just combined. Fold in the nectarine chunks.

Fill the muffin cups about 2/3 full, then sprinkle with the reserved crumble. Bake for 20-25 minutes, until the muffins are browned and spring back slightly when touched. Allow muffins to cool before removing from the pan.


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