Hungry Hungry Hippie

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Special Sauce

I have been living off salads, but not all are of the lettuce variety.  Broccoli and cauliflower are a-okay to fill in when greens are low.  A while ago I was staring into the fridge with slim pickins looking back at me so I opened the freezer aaaaand…


Broccoli!  Cauliflower!  I tossed them with the measly greens from the garden, hemp seeds, and dried cranberries.

And then we add in…


MAYO on steroids!

Oh.  My,  Gosh.

Pardon the hyperbole but duuuuuuuude.


Sir Kensington’s products were on sale at Nugget a few weeks ago (2 for $5 which is basically 2 for the price of 1) and I’d been eyeing them for a while, so naturally I jumped at the chance to get them for cheap.  [They are now offered online at Thrive Market FYI]


So anyway, I have essentially been dumping this all over everything lately.


Tuna salad is never going to be the same again.


Has anyone tried Sir Kensington’s flavored mayonnaises?  They have chipotle and sriracha flavored mayo!!!  Those are next at bat for sure.  Baseball reference?  What the?!


More new stuff!  The above Luke’s chia see multigrain & seed crackers are allergy friendly (as in safe for my little guy).  Plus they are packed with quality ingredients that I actually want to give my son (and eat myself, duh).

They aren’t very “cracker” like though.  I was surprised when I opened them and saw that they looked like chips.  They don’t taste totally chip like, though.  They are like a cracker chip hybrid.  Hard to describe.  They are smallish and not too salty, so those points are a wash in terms of binge-ability.  And unlike corn chips – which give me regurg when not eaten in moderation – I can enjoy these plentifully without angering my esophagus.  Anyway, flavor wise they are good!  Light and seedy and yummy!




Ingredients: brown rice flour, millet flour, quinoa flour, amaranth flour, potato starch, oil blend (sunflower, safflower, red palm), chia seeds, red quinoa seeds, and salt.


Those pickled carrots turned out AMAAAAZING by the way!  They are super strong, which means Kyle won’t be touching them.  All miiiiine.  :)

The market is thriving

I am obsessed.


First of all, how fun is it to get packages of FOOD!?!

So.  Fun.

Second, how fun is it to stay indoors when it’s hot and you have two young ones.  If only I could skip the grocery store entirely…


So I basically love Thrive Market now.  I highly recommend you all join.  It’s amazing what you can get AND at the crazy wholesale price!  Plus, they blow up my inbox daily with free stuff…I’ve already gotten a FREE jar of coconut oil (used that in four seconds flat) and now a FREE bag of Late July chips.  For no reason at all!?!  Just for placing an order!

Screenshot 2015-07-29 19.54.02

Those Late July chips are amazing by the way.  They are also allergy free and P loves getting them as a rare treat.  He calls them “mama and dada chips”.  As you can see I ordered 8 items and the shipping was free since it was just barely over $50.  Total win.  JOIN!  Do it!  Do it now!!


Aaaaand, now that I’ve told you how miserable this heat has been, how about I show you the time we decided to turn on the oven to make donuts together.


He did so much of this without my intervention and I was shocked they actually turned out!


I mean, lumpy, yes, but edible?


Well, he seemed to think so.


Coconut flour and oil from Thrive, thankyouverymuch.  Allergy friendly products are sometimes so hard to find, and then when you do they are $$$$ so this is honestly the best case scenario.  Now I don’t have to fill the Costco request box every time I go!  Ha!  [PS membership breaks down to less than $5 per month too – way cheaper than Costco!]

Three Thing Thursday

Three breakfasts:

  • smoothies with Vega one with “banola”
  • high fat greek yogurt with nuts and seeds
  • weekend brunch with friends

The first two are my every day options.  I love them and have no desire to branch out.  The last was what we did on Saturday.  See below.


So thick a spoon could rest on it.


After declaring my looooove for Vega over the past few months (years?) on the blog, the amazingly generous Trevor hooked me up with this!!  What!?!  How nice is that?!  My obsession has never been stronger.


And thanks to the 100 degree weather, I wake up craving cold and refreshing things right away.

It’s the perfect start to my day…work out…Vega smoothie.  Boom.  Best foot forward.



The only competition is yogurt with (home-made) granola / banola / handfuls of nuts & seeds.  Those are the breakfasts I turn to when we are running late and I have to be out the door like 10 minutes ago…because all I do is throw a bunch of stuff from the pantry into a huge tub of plain greek yogurt.  Not surprisingly, I don’t have many photos of those meals.


Yogurt buddy!  This meal was my first of the day and the second for pattycakes.  Thanks to an early appointment for V and a dead car battery I wasn’t able to eat breakfast until after 11 am, which is wayyyyyyy not good for my hanger management.  P was equally testy (who knows why – he spent the morning with dad at home and at the park) so we both needed some TLC when I got home.  He was super excited to sit at the table instead of his high chair.  I was excited for blood sugar.


Look at that masssssive tub of banola.  The double batches last a week or so.


Sadly I misjudged my banana situation last week and ran out (I freeze them for smoothies and P and K eat them, so sometimes none reach the ripe enough stage to bake with!).


Anyway, when that does happen, I just chuck everything from the pantry into the yogurt and call it a day.  Pecans, walnuts, shredded coconut, and hemp seeds are my latest combo.


Brunch!  We had peeps over last weekend and what I served – rosemary fried potatoes, chicken sausage, and fruit – was specifically chosen to avoid my friend’s pregnancy aversions and honor cravings.


Three thoughts on my daughter:

  • I really hope V isn’t allergic to anything.  Seems an obvious wish for a parent, but it’s one I think about all the time.  I am currently digging raw walnuts and pecans big time and thus far I haven’t noticed her having any reactions to foods I eat.  I’ve eaten everything P is allergic to by now, so fingers crossed her clear skin and lack of regurgitation means something positive.  I guess we will see in the next few months…how is she already getting ready for solids!?!
  • She finally figured out how to suck her thumb (she’s been working on it for a while now) and it’s awesome.  Not that she was fussy or anything before, but now she can self soothe even better.  Plus, it’s cute.
  • She and P are so in love with one another.  They each adore the other so intensely it’s beyond anything I even imagined it could be.  No words can describe the sibling love.  It’s so special.


Sweet stuff

Kyle and I are probably the worst influence on each other because we both have zero self control when it comes to chocolate.  We both have dessert every single night and it’s not even a question of what we are going to have, but how much.


Half of the time I make us stuff…usually cookies or brownies for him and chocolate bark or cups for me.

The other half of the time we buy (massive amounts of) chocolate bars…Kyle and I can dominate a TJs pound plus bar (the dark chocolate with almonds is our fave) in 3-4 nights.  So you can only imagine what our cart looks like for an average weekly grocery haul.

Here are some of what we’ve been enjoying lately…along with some rambling.


I just discovered Lily’s chocolate and I LOVE it.  My mom (errrr…the Easter bunny) gave me a Lily’s chocolate egg in my basket and ever since then I’ve bought a bar or two whenever I go to WF.  It’s stevia sweetened so it’s not as much of a sugar bomb which is ideal since I eat at least half a bar per night.  Also, it doesn’t destroy my gut the way xylitol does.

And more good news!  They sell Lily’s chocolate chips on Thrive Market for way cheaper than you can find them anywhere else!  Yeah, I have totally drunk the Thrive kool-aid.  It’s an awesome company and I’m probably going to end up keeping my membership after the trial is over because the prices are phenomenal and the annual fee isn’t too bad when you break it down ($5 a month).  Beyond that, they do SO MANY promotions that you can always get something free or even more discounted.  Also shipping is free if your order is over $50.  You can get sooooo much stuff for $50.  Oh!  AND they donate a membership to someone else for each paying member who joins.  So legit.  Have I convinced you to get on board yet???


I don’t really take photos when I make bark anymore because I make it almost twice a week now.  I realize that frequency is kinda insane, but I truly believe the coconut oil is helping my gut like nothing I’ve tried before.  [TMI warning] As a lifelong IBS-C sufferer, I can firmly state  that second to following a low FODMAP diet, coconut oil is making me regular in a way that nothing else has ever ever ever been able to.  And I’ve tried everything.  I mean, way back when HHH started, it was to sort out a diet that worked to manage my IBS.  Since then it has morphed into much more, but tweaking my food choices to minimize symptoms has always been at it’s root.  In large amounts coconut oil can be a little bloating, but it’s a short lived bloat and I’ve found that if I eat it at night, it’s gone by the morning and my digestive system is almost like a “normal” person’s.  I hope it continues to work and isn’t some hormonal thing that is exclusive to this postpartum phase.  We shall see…in the meantime, it’s a delicious excuse to eat lots of coconut oil chocolate.


The other major source of coconut oil in my life is home-made crackers.  I make them once a week and have them with lunch almost every day.  Basically, I alternate the days I eat crackers with the days I eat bark so I don’t overload my system with coconut oil.  The crackers are so addictive it’s hard to stop so I only make them in batches that will last a week.  But, truth be told, they are so easy to whip up I have a hard time not making them as frequently as I make bark!


I used to buy unsweetened puffed corn (Arrowhead Mills brand) for P when he was a baby in place of sweetened “puffs” but lately I can’t find them anywhere.  While he eats them very sparingly now, I do continue to buy them to keep them in a tupperware in the car.  I combine them with dried fruit to make a trail mix of sorts that serves as a car snack distraction for P.  I know they still make the puffed corn but all the stores near me are out and you have to order in bulk online.

All that is to say, I’ve been buying GF (rice) chex mix to fill the void.  It’s more processed (duh) and has sugar in it, so that sucks.  But then I get to use it in my bark, so that’s fun.


These cookies were from Nigella’s cookbook Nigella Kitchen that I got from the library a couple weeks ago.


Kyle always always always wants cookies in the house.  And then he blames me for having cookies in the house.  I lose.


These lasted him a really long time though.  I was impressed with his self control.  It’s not something I could have done.  They had butter though so he didn’t have to share with anyone else.


Needless to say, he was pretty pleased.


And then WF had a #onedaysale that I just couldn’t resist.  I swear they knew what they were doing when they scheduled it for the week that the temps spiked to 105.


I mean?  What did they think I was going to do???

I bought an almond milk flavor and a coconut milk flavor.  I can’t recall which was which but one was butter pecan and one was chocolate.


More bark.


We had friends over for brunch last weekend and they brought the most massive bag of Ghirardelli ever.


Kyle doesn’t know it yet but I have no intentions of sharing this  😉

Good thing I finished my box of See’s candy because the pantry can’t hold much more chocolate than it currently has.  I know I will come up with a solution somehow…I just know it.

The weekly menu

This week’s menu starts off with some of last week because I got home from Tahoe to an empty fridge and decided to do the grocery shopping for the remaining (two) days of that week and this one all in one swoop.

Inspired by my latest library haul (cookbooks), I made several Gwyneth recipes.


[In terms of reviews, I LOVED “It’s All Good” so much I ended up buying it for myself on Amazon Prime Day (for a stellar discount).  I’ve made a handful of the recipes already and I have decided to challenge myself to cook through the entire book.  It shouldn’t be too hard because the recipes all look and sound delicious, nothing is super complicated or elaborate (but still call for techniques and ingredients I may not otherwise try), and they are completely suitable for our family’s diet.  I know she gets crap for her elitist diet (and way of life), but I kinda think Gwyneth is awesome.  Yes, she has access to the freshest and best quality ingredients, but I don’t think we should fault her for choosing organic and local because of it.  If I had acres and acres of my own land I’d grow everything too.  In reading her inspiration for the cookbook and background, I can totally get behind her healthy choices.  Plus, she isn’t dogmatic about things.  Yes, the recipes are mainly dairy and gluten free, but there is the rare inclusion of both at times (with subs noted); and a few recipes call for soy.  By contrast, Practical Paleo is not worth buying in my opinion.  I photocopied the spice blends but beyond that, it’s mostly really really basic cooking stuff (I hesitate to call them recipes because they are the kinds of things I’d make on my own and wouldn’t bother posting about because they seem so common sense).  The book might be good for people who are newly embarking on a journey of eating real (whole) foods, especially those who are just stepping foot in the kitchen for the first time.  But a lot of the recipes are, like, meat with salt and pepper.  That’s a slight exaggeration, but only slight.  Some of the breakfast recipes look good but 99% of them include eggs (and not just 1 egg – like 6+ eggs!) so that’s that.  What should I get from the library next?]

Ok…here are the dinners I made our family.


This bacon was for P, but I used the fat to sauté greens for myself (Kyle was in the city for work stuff and not eating at home).


I added kale and shredded brussels sprouts in rounds as they simmered down.  I deglazed the pan with a splash of water once or twice too, but otherwise it was just bacon fat and salt in there (and MULTIPLE servings of kale).


I made a hippie bowl (similar to the “rice cream sundae” bowls a la Gwyneth’s book) with quinoa, kale/brussels, and salmon.


While I was taking a photo of my bowl P said “mama, please take a picture of my dinner!”  Oh the cuteness!  Squeal!  Future foodie in the making.  :)


He had a bowl of quinoa too.  Plus heaps of fruit.  And who knows what else, but a lot of it I’m sure.  I keep meaning to do a “what I ate” style post for him but then I fear other moms may fall prey to the comparison thing.  Still, I like getting new ideas for toddler meals so I’m considering it.  He has a voracious appetite so the portions may seem surprising.  Like, he can out eat me no problem, and that is saying a lot.


I specifically made extra greens to have them left over for the week’s lunches.  I am still super smitten with brassica fam.


The next night I grabbed some pork belly from the freezer and put it in the crock pot.


I added frozen green beans for the last 30 minutes or so…just in time for them to heat up…then I tossed them in the extra sauce and served it all over rice.


Done and done.

Look what Kyle brought home for meeeeee…


I know the box shape by heart, so obviously I tore it open as soon as the kids were down.


See’s are just so freakin’ easy to inhale.  This box lasted me 4 nights and that was me practicing MAJOR self control.


Gwyneth recipes comin’ atcha!


This was salmon with Lee’s sriracha and lime paired with the Vietnamese salad.  I used Organicville sriracha instead of making my own because the yield for her recipe was an insane amount of sriracha that seemed unnecessary when I already had the bottled stuff on hand.


I was SHOCKED that P ate this salad.  The dressing has a lot of fish sauce in it, as well as fresh ginger and lime juice and yet, he was totally into the broccoli and carrots and celery (dressing and all!).  Mega win!  I tweaked the recipe to use veggies and greens I had on hand, but I’m sure bok choy (as called for) would be great too and I plan on making it again.


P also ate the fish, which wasn’t too spicy despite the sriracha.


I love cilantro and lime.


Another day, another recipe for the Paltrow Project (PP).  [That’s what I am now dubbing the mission to cook every recipe in “It’s All Good”]


Being the planner that I am, I knew I had another PP recipe slated for later that week that called for the same combo of herbs, so I made both at once with the mini food processor.  Two dinners, one clean up.


First, turkey meatballs.


Without egg or breadcrumbs, I was a little nervous about how these would turn out, but they were a HUGE hit.


Another win for the Paltrow Project since they were a hit with the toddler as well as the adults.


Gwyneth would be proud since I made my own tomato sauce too with the tomatoes from “the farm”.


I had no idea what I was doing, but figured herbs, salt, and a dash of sugar were the simplest way to go.


And then I let it simmer simmer simmer away until it reduced and turned into a nice flavorful sauce.


I did the meatballs in two batches and ended up sharing far more than I wanted to with my little guy.  He also ate a bunch of rice (it’s our family’s carb of choice) but was a no go on the tomatoes.


FYI, I used dark turkey meat (thighs) for this, because they have more flavor and lean turkey is often too dry.  I found the meatballs totally flavorful and perfect and wouldn’t change a thing.


On Tuesday I made this potato salad swapping in sweet potatoes for the yukon golds and adding broccoli just because.


Cold (make ahead) dishes are key for Tuesdays when we have soccer until late.  I accidentally overcooked the potatoes so they ended up like a mash as opposed to a chunkier potato salad (which is what I was going for), but oh well.  Still tasted good.


Don’t forget the cilantro!


Kyle had his with pork sausage, while P and I shared applegate hot dogs.


Does mine look like a (sad?) face?  I ended up sharing my hot dog with P so he had 2.5 and I just ate a few more servings of the sweet potato dish instead.  I didn’t really care.


Paltrow Project recipes above and below… I know what you’re thinking.  It’s something along the lines of, geez, that cookbook must be amazing for her to cook 6 recipes from it in one week!?  To which I would say, YES!  You hit the nail on the head.  Nothing is super revolutionary about the above quinoa, but it’s just different enough from a more boring version I would make on my own that makes it special.

The recipe I used from the book was actually for risotto (with peas and greens), but we had just had rice with her meatballs recipe a couple days prior so I thought I’d do quinoa instead.


I served the perfect herb chicken with it (which was super quick and easy since I’d already chopped the herbs in the food processor back when I was making the meatballs).  A little lemon juice and zest and olive oil and boom.


Our family is now at the double baking dish amount of food for dinner and my daughter isn’t even eating solids yet…I am amazed and floored by this and have a feeling the two ovens in our kitchen will be very necessary as these bottomless pits approach their teenage years.


P liked the chicken as long as there weren’t any major chunks of rosemary.  He ate a whole one straight from the garden a while back and it kinda made him iffy on rosemary.  I use it in cooking all the time though, so I know he likes the flavor.  Whole branches?  Not so much.

He didn’t like the quinoa at all though, which I kinda knew would be the case.  I saved him plain quinoa which he happily ate instead after trying a few bites of the one with peas and greens.  I think it was the green onions that put him off.


The next night was supposed to be a Mexican salad bowl but I didn’t have time to prep the individual components (nap fails and such) so I pulled salmon from the freezer to pan fry instead.


All I did was cook it in olive oil and coconut aminos for a quick sear on high heat.  Then flipped it, turned it to medium/low, and let it cook for a few more minutes until it was barely cooked in the center.  Kyle came home later, so I waited to do his until just before he ate (which is why you only see the filets for P and I above).


I had mine with asparagus and leftover quinoa, Kyle had his with quinoa no asparagus, and P had his with plain quinoa.


Kyle said it was like something he’d order at a restaurant.


In other words, it was really really good.  Costco salmon, I tell ya what – don’t knock it til you try it.  Also, coconut aminos. Quickly becoming a staple in our pantry now that I know it’s safe for P.


Friday was a kinda off day for me and I struggled to keep it together.  Luckily I have good friends who boost me up and I salvaged my mood with a quickie afternoon play date.  It also kept me from making bad food decisions.  Instead of a less healthful and more $$ route, I pulled this salad together with stuff we had on hand.


It wasn’t the planned meal, but I wasn’t in the mood to make the planned meal, and this was a great backup.


You know how I looooooove Brianna’s poppyseed dressing after all.  :)


Perfectly portioned for two.


P had the melon and avo portion of the meal but seems to be over shrimp for the time being.  I can’t fault him for being moody with his food or getting in ruts and then ODing because that’s kinda my MO.  And I can’t blame him for being stuck with my genes.


Finally the weekend!  After a fun brunch with our friends and a late lunch, neither Kyle nor I wanted something too heavy or elaborate for dinner.  Enter kale.  I’d say my diet at this point in time is 30% kale, 30% chocolate, and 40% “other”.

I massaged the kale down to half it’s size then doused it in Caesar dressing.


Then rounded it out with diced chicken (which P had too) and nooch (for me).  Kyle’s portion had parmesan because he does dairy.


Phew!  That was a LONG ONE!!!!