Wednesday, February 18, 2015

If a Niçoise Salad were a Hipster

... It would be a kale, haricot vert and chickpea salad.

Enough jokes. Let's talk about the tastiest lunch you could make. It's dynamic in flavor and delightfully filling. 

Ingredients:

• Curly kale (enough for one meal)
• 1/4 cup roasted chickpeas (let them roast in the oven with salt, pepper and chili powder while you get the other ingredients together)
• A handful of green beans lightly sautéed in olive oil (you want them to still be crispy)
• 1/8 cup thinly sliced red onions sautéed lightly with the green beans
• 2 tbsp chopped roasted almonds
• Half a lemon
• 1 tbsp olive oil
• Salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

• Wash the kale and set aside. Place the chickpeas on a cookie sheet to roast in the oven with desired spices.
• Start to sauté the beans, for about five minutes. Add the onions and take off the heat.
• Chop almonds.
• Toss all the ingredients into a bowl and cover with the juice of half a lemon, the tablespoon of olive oil and the salt/pepper.
• Toss until the salad is well mixed and evenly coated.


Monday, February 16, 2015

Gilded Hydrangeas

Decorating with flowers in the winter months can be a challenge. While some varieties bloom in colder months and flower shops will provide important selections, I tend to find them pricey and therefore not worth it. 

On the other hand, fake bouquets seem cheesy to me. Occasionally I'll find a silk arrangement that catches my eye, but again, the price is out of the question. 

Bring in dried hydrangeas (I'm sure you've got some in your own yard, if not look around and you can spot some. Ask a neighbor if you can cut a few). Spray paint those things and display them for a funky looking arrangement in your home. 


What you need: 

• Dried up hydrangea blossoms (sorry I didn't get a before picture)
• Gold spray paint (you could do any color, really)

Directions:

• If the hydrangeas are wet from the rain dry them out. If you have time hang them to dry in a warm space. If not, use a blowdryer. That's what I did. 
• Get outside and spray paint the flowers. Do not do this inside, seriously.
• Make sure to get the stems too.

It's as easy as that. 



Saturday, February 14, 2015

Wholewheat Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies

These aren't heart shaped or covered in pastel sprinkles, but they are chock-full of chocolate (he he) and I'd argue that nothing is more loving that chocolate. 

I don't like raisins. I like oatmeal raisin cookies, only because I like the spiced oatmeal part and I bite really fast around the raisins. So I decided to go ahead and bake some with chocolate instead this time. They were good. Read on.

I just copied my current favorite oatmeal raisin cookie recipes and swapped the raisins for chocolate chips. 

Ingredients: 

1 cup melted butter
3/4 cup light brown sugar
2 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 1/4 cup wholewheat flour
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon kosher salt
3 cups quick cook oats
1 cup chopped walnuts
1 cup semi sweet chocolate chips

Directions:

• Preheat oven to 325º 
• Cream butter and brown sugar (about 3 minutes)
• Beat in eggs, one at a time. Add vanilla extract
• Combine flour, baking soda, salt, and oats into wet mixture
• Mix in the walnuts and chocolate chips
• Drop by heaping spoonfuls onto parchment paper lined cookie sheet
• Bake for 9-12 minutes