Homemade Hot Chocolate

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Special thanks to Yahoo! for sponsoring this post! Happy December! Today is the day The Einkorn Cookbook officially releases, so if you haven't ordered your copy yet, now would be a great time to do so---go ahead, I'll wait---and once you've got a copy in your hands this winter season, why not cuddle up with it alongside a glass of homemade hot chocolate? It's a myth that making homemade hot chocolate has to take longer and/or be more involved than making the packaged kind that comes in a box. Have you believed this? Don't. To put together your own, real-foods, deliciously rich and creamy hot chocolate, here are the pantry staples that you need: milk (raw milk or coconut milk are our favorites), cocoa powder and a sweetener (honey or maple syrup work great). You mix the three of them together, proportions according to your tastes, and have a hot, chocolatey beverage ready in 10 minutes or less. In today's version, I added a bit of cayenne pepper and a dash of salt, but those … [Read more...]

Spiced Pepper and Onion Vegetarian Tacos

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The last few months, alongside moving and a kitchen renovation and getting ready for The Einkorn Cookbook's launch, I've been jetting back and forth to the Chicago suburbs. One of our family members has been in and out of the hospital, so there's been a lot of talking to doctors, feeling angry/depressed/confrontational about the lack of real food in hospital cafeterias, sitting in rooms waiting, listening (a lot of listening) and laughing at the funny ways my parents introduce us to nurses, doctors and friends. ("They drink kombucha. Do you like kombucha?") Sitting in hospitals tends to be the kind of thing to make you feel powerless, like there's nothing your hands can do, but I've found some of the best things my hands do are release their grip and trust. That, and make food. When everything else is in crisis, people still need food to eat. And, maybe this is our finally working kitchen talking, but being able to cook and prepare your own food is such a privilege. One of the last … [Read more...]

Triple Berry Salad with Sautéed Shallots and Walnuts in a Cayenne-Honey Vinaigrette

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This year's CSA started Monday with a first week loaded with lettuce (baskets and baskets of lettuce!)... there was so much lettuce, in fact, that our farmers were giving it away, as much as you could take, whether or not you have the larger, family-sized share (we don't). It was hard for my frugal heart to take only two heads (even in addition to the kale, pokeweed, catnip, etc.), but it was easier when I unpacked our bags at home and tried to figure out how two of us would eat so many greens before they wilt. It almost goes without saying that we've been eating salads ever since. Salads with goat cheese and pesto, salads with a hodge podge of vegetables or fresh strawberries (from our other farmer!) and salads like this triple berry one we had tonight. At its heart, this is a simple combination, but the shallots and walnuts add a more complex, savory note that reminds me of Thanksgiving, and then the whole thing gets kicked up even further with the cayenne-honey oil/vinegar on … [Read more...]

A Berry Date Smoothie with a Kick (+ Giveaway)

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UPDATE: The winner is Lindsey Hepler! Thanks everyone for entering, and congratulations to Lindsey! THIS THIRD WEEK OF AUGUST HAS BEEN a night on Nashville's walking bridge, traffic whooshing by on the distant interstate, a ferry boat passing beneath, my head against Tim's shoulder while I tell him, "You know, if I lived a thousand years on the planet all by myself, I'd never figure out how to build a boat like that," and us moving to the other side of the bridge to keep watching it, following it, mesmerized by the turning showboat gears like little children looking at a train; a twilight picnic next to soccer practice, SUVs dropping off and picking up preteens, moms calling out I love yous to their running kids just as the golden hour fades; spiders' webs so big, constructed around our back door overnight, that I shriek when I see them, even though the streets are sleeping in the early-morning sunrise; long-distance phone conversations with wise voices; surprise hydrangeas; … [Read more...]

Beet and Lettuce Salad with Green Onion Vinaigrette

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Tim and I got a new bathroom ceiling this week. First, we got a massive ceiling bubble that Tim had to pop with a knife, straddling the toilet and the tub, a five-gallon bucket in his other hand while water shot from the ceiling cyst like milk from a cow; but then, beginning Wednesday and ending, hopefully, right around the time this post publishes, a nice handyman named Jim patched and worked and painted things, and our ceiling looked like a ceiling again. I'm not afraid to use the bathroom anymore, and I don't have to drive down the street to White Castle to sneak into the ladies' room, so obviously things are looking up. Also, Monday night and Tuesday night, like rewards for the days we'd survived and laughed through, the two of us sat down to matching plates piled high with salads like this one. Even I have to admit it's hard to complain when your plate is full of this. … [Read more...]

Creamy, Comforting Tortilla Soup

Of all the reasons for blogging, there's no contest, the greatest fringe benefit is the people, this amazing community of thoughtful individuals who are interested in other people's stories and find enjoyment in good food (and sometimes even become real-life friends, inviting us into their homes). Does it get old to hear we're so thankful for each of you out there? Because we are. We're so inspired by other bloggers, and we're so blessed by those of you who read here. In fact, just as we get to know certain bloggers by following their sites, we've found we get to know certain readers by their consistent comments---we start to remember so-and-so as the one who likes gluten-free recipes or the one who always has something encouraging to say. One such reader is the ever kind and supportive Marie Matter of the Little Kitchie blog, who inspired today's recipe for creamy, comforting tortilla soup so good, I had tears in my eyes while I ate it yesterday, and not just because of the kick of … [Read more...]

Crockpot Thai Chicken Curry

I realize two days before Thanksgiving is not exactly the ideal time to post a Thai chicken recipe, not when the majority of cooking America is, at this very moment, abuzz with turkey, mashed potatoes, dinner rolls and pumpkin pie. But, forgive me, I have this habit of assuming all of you out there aren't so different from me, and so I figure maybe you're also two days away from attending a delicious Thanksgiving meal in another state, one that's so completely out of your hands, you already know all that will be expected of you is to show up, maybe chop a vegetable or two. In that case, finding another Thanksgiving recipe is not the pressing issue on your mind, but, what to make for dinner tonight, the night before you fly home, is---and so here's something easy and quick. The truth is, even if I were in charge of the meal on Thursday, that would only mean remaking a dozen or so of the same dishes my family eats every year: turkey and potatoes and green beans, maybe a gelatin … [Read more...]