Helloooooooooo! Happy happy HAPPY Friday. I was able to sleep with my window open last night, and I woke up in a freezing room snuggled cozily under my comforter, just the way I like it. Fall is finally here. It’s my favorite season, for sure. I love Halloween and hot cider and leaves that change color, and I especially adore all things pumpkin- pumpkin bread, pumpkin pancakes, pumpkin pie, pumpkin lattes, pumpkin oatmeal, pumpkin patches- the list is endless.
I have an absurd amount of studying to do this weekend (BOO!), because my first A&P test is on Tuesday. Not only is my first lecture exam that day, but my first lab practical is that afternoon! Ridiculous, because the lab and lecture do not go hand-in-hand as one might expect. Really it’s like taking two totally separate classes.
(Ok, enough sulking. Tonight we’re sneaking away to meet my sis and her man at the Spiral Diner, so I have that to look forward to.)
Anyway, I have tons of food pics to share! I also have next week’s menu figured out, which I’ll post at the end. You know there is lots of pumpkin involved.
Lately I’ve been in a bit of a breakfast rut, and Wednesday morning I was saved by this post from Angela at Oh She Glows. After drooling over her incredible make-ahead oatmeal creations, I immediately headed to the kitchen and got cooking. Her recipe for steel-cut oatmeal is extremely tasty, and I’ll be making it this way from now on!
In 30 minutes I had 4 glorious servings of thick, creamy, cinnamon-y steel-cut oats ready to go.
I planned on using this oatmeal to make some of Angela’s amazing breakfast creations this week, but I couldn’t get pumpkin off my mind. Since I’m not one to deny my cravings, here is what I’ve eaten the last two mornings:
Mother effing PUMPKIN PIE OATMEAL.
I just reheated a serving of the make-ahead oatmeal, stirred in half a cup of canned plain pumpkin puree, a little stevia, some pumpkin pie spice, and topped it off with a spoonful of SunButter and sprinkle of cinnamon.
It was so good I almost cried. Hello, fall.
Wednesday’s lunch: chopped veggie salad topped with homemade garlic hummus, shelled hemp seeds, and Brianna’s poppyseed dressing.
Yesterday’s lunch: big bed of kale topped with leftover vegan nacho veggies, re-fried beans, cilantro, salsa, and nacho cheeze sauce. (Ho boy, this was really good.)
THE BEST cherry smoothie!
Blend together in a blender or food processor:
- 1 large frozen banana (the riper the better… riper? More ripe? Where’s my Gram when I need her?!)
- 1/2 – 1 cup frozen cherries
- 1/2 – 1 cup vanilla almond milk (depending on how thick you want your smoothie to be- I like mine so thick I have to eat it with a spoon)
That’s it! Blend and enjoy. The cherries and banana provide natural sweetness, and it takes about 2 seconds to throw together. This is why I always keep frozen overly ripe bananas in my freezer.
Alright. Are you ready for something totally crazy? While procrastinating a bit on Wednesday I came across this recipe for Deep Dish Cookie Pie. You know I’m a sucker for all things dessert, especially anything containing chocolate. Intrigued, I decided to create this divine-looking treat. As I scanned the ingredients list, I discovered that this pie contains a secret ingredient: BEANS.
I’d heard about baking with beans before but had never tried it. Katie’s recipe sounded incredibly easy and I happened to have everything except for the beans on hand, so I ran to the store for some white beans and got my bake on.
At this point I was a little nervous. The batter looked good, but how would it taste? I asked E if he wanted to lick the spoon, and his eyes rolled back into his head as he exclaimed, “Mmm. That’s really good cookie dough!” (Of course I didn’t tell him there were beans in that cookie dough.)
I followed the recipe exactly, except that I used 1/4 cup less brown sugar (1.25 cups instead of 1.5) and had to bake my pie for an extra 5 minutes (40 instead of 35).
It came out beautifully- looked and smelled amazing.
But how did it taste? Can a flour-less, gluten-free, fiber and protein-packed vegan dessert like this really taste as good as it looks?
The answer is YES. The kids freakin’ loved it! Like, so much so that when I asked them if they wanted some the next night, E’s response was, “You mean that cookie dough pie that we had last night? Oh YES YES YES YES YES, please!”
I enjoyed a slice for dessert on Wednesday night and it really was amazing. I heated it in the microwave for a few seconds and then topped with a scoop of vanilla bean coconut milk ice cream. Making that pie was a very, very good idea.
Some dinners this week…
This is a great recipe to make for tofu skeptics. It’s really, really tasty!
Ready to press…
I actually pressed the tofu on Wednesday. After a few hours of pressing I put the slabs in the container with the marinade, gave it a good toss and then stuck it in the fridge overnight. Easy.
Then all I had to do last night for dinner was cook the tofu and make the guacamole! So simple, and so delicious. I’ve made these tacos before and broiled the tofu like the recipe says to, but last night I opted to fry the slices in a little olive oil instead, for added crispiness. The tacos turn out really good either way.
Whole-wheat tortillas, guacamole, fried tofu, cabbage, salsa, red onion and cilantro.
Sadly, there aren’t any leftovers. :( I really like that tofu.
As usual, M brought dessert:
She made Mama Pea’s Chocolate Cherry Chunk Dough Balls, except she made them better by subbing pistachios for the cashews and almonds and used dark chocolate with almonds and sea salt in place of the chocolate chips. (In a word: BRILLIANT.)
Holy balls, they were good. We enjoyed them with a little vanilla bean coconut milk ice cream, and it was glorious.
Here is this week’s menu!
Tonight: Spiral Diner!
Sunday: Mama Pea’s Spicy African Peanut Stew
Monday: Oh She Glows Cheezy Summer Pasta (my way of saying good-bye to summer!)
Tuesday: Daily Garnish’s Sweet Potato and Lentil Chili (hello, fall!)
Wednesday: Mama Pea’s Vegetarian Pad Thai (from the Peas and Thank You cookbook)
For Sunday’s breakfast, I’m going to satisfy my pumpkin needs once again by making Mama Pea’s Vegan Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls. Oh my gah, yes. I plan to make the rolls on Saturday afternoon like I did with the blueberry ones last time. That way I can just pull the rolls out to rise an hour before everyone wakes up on Sunday morning and then bake before eating.
And if that isn’t enough pumpkin for ya, I’m going to make Oh She Glows Pumpkin Butter Swirl Butternut Pecan Bread. I think it’ll make good breakfasts, snacks and maybe even dessert for the week ahead (maybe heated and topped with a little ice cream? YES!?).
And there you have it. I should probably go study now.
What are your plans for the weekend?
I’ll be studying and consuming all things pumpkin.
Have a good one!