Hungry Hungry Hippie

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Set for a short week

I made these cinnamon banana swirl muffins on Thursday and they are almost gone!

Kyle has been having them for breakfasts, and the kids have been having them for afternoon snacks.  I froze 6 of them, but since the rest are gone, I think I’ll pull them out for Kyle’s work breakfasts this week.  I’m always happy when low sugar things are a hit.  Mega cinnamon flavor on top of suuuuuper ripe bananas always helps decrease the amount of sweetener needed.  And since I was about to roast chickpeas, I used the aquafaba for the muffins thereby making them vegan (no eggs necessary)!

What else have I been up to this fine Sunday?

Shopping at THREE stores.  [OOF]  And lots of prep.

Priority number one was making candied walnuts.  As well as roasting squash.  Because my vegan winter is all I’ve been thinking about.

Check and check!

I also made this granola.   And baked two sheets of bacon (for the birthday boy).  And made Valentine’s Day cards 🙂

The only thing that was on my list that I didn’t get to was baking treats for his class, but I still have Monday for that.  Happy Birthday Abe Lincoln.

I had this before church but my stomach did NOT take to it kindly.  I actually had a weird IBS flare the day/night before that I thought was all resolved, but nope, wrong.  I almost didn’t eat anything because I was feeling borderline and could tell anything I ate wasn’t going to be well received and I should have just listened to my gut (pun intended) because I was feeling pretty blah the rest of the day.

There’s nothing more beautiful than a new jar of jam.

We finished off the previous one with cheese and crackers a few night’s back, but our freezer is super well stocked thanks to the July/August nectarine production.  Chia jam is the EASIEST to make so once the fruit is ripe I go to town and then I’m pretty set for the year.

I don’t even add sugar – just the sweet stone fruit simmered until it’s been reduced to thick gooey preserves.  For lunch the kids had SB&Js with cuties on the side.

And I got my beloved winter salad!

Sadly, this re-aggravated my gut (which had finally simmered down) and the rest of the afternoon was very annoying.

I forged ahead though but definitely wasn’t feeling like much for dinner.  I scrapped our original plan and made noodles to add to leftover short ribs.

That broth is so rich and thick, you can add anything to it and it’s pure gold.  Thanks to the pasta, I was able to stretch the leftovers into a meal for the whole family.  It makes me feel better about the $$$ cost of short ribs when they provide enough for 8 servings.

My stomach felt fine after dinner (I only had a tiny bit of short ribs and broth – no wheat) so hopefully I’m on the other side of the blahs.  I nursed a trilogy kombucha while watching the Olympics later and went to bed early.  YOU GUYS.  Sorry to shout but Costco has 6 packs of GT’s Trilogy!!!  I wanted to buy 3 of them but I stuck with one and am already regretting it.  Good thing I just pledged to brew my own.  I’m saving all my empty jars now.  I need 16.  It’s a tough job, but I think I’ll get there…

Everyday granola

This is the kids’ favorite granola recipe.

Like all granola, it’s SO easy to make.  And it’s much healthier and cheaper than cereal.  In terms of breakfast rotation, I make them pancakes and oatmeal more than anything else.  But the rest of the time, they want granola.

This is a very basic recipe with lots of wiggle room for taste preferences, but for the purposes of our family’s diet, it is VEGAN, GLUTEN FREE, NUT FREE, DAIRY FREE, and SOY FREE.

It has a moderate amount of clusters, but is perfect for kiddo spoons.

And as the chief taste tester, I can assure you, any adult will gobble this up too.  Not just kids!  It’s just fancy enough to entice your taste buds, but doesn’t have too many ingredients to be over the top.

Basically it’s an awesome every day granola.

The kids’ favorite granola [vegan, gluten free, nut free, soy free, dairy free]

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup quick oat
  • 1 cup whole rolled oats
  • 1 cup seeds* (I usually do 3/4 c sunflower + 1/4 cup pepitas)
  • 1/2 cup coconut oil, melted
  • 1/3 cup maple syrup
  • 1 tbsp hemp seeds
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 cup raisins

Directions:

Pre heat the oven to 225 degrees F.

Combine oats and seeds in a large mixing bowl.

Add coconut oil and maple syrup and mix.  Add the rest of the ingredients (cinnamon and vanilla) but not the raisins and stir to combine.*

Pour onto a greased baking sheet and spread out evenly.

Bake for 60 minutes.

Add the raisins once the granola has cooled.  Break up clusters as you want.  Serve and enjoy!

*My seeds are usually salted and roasted so I don’t add any salt to the granola, but if your seeds are raw then add 1/2 tsp salt to the granola when you add in the cinnamon.

Toasted oat perfection in the works.

Can we all just pause a minute because this guy is turning FIVE TODAY!

Guess what he requested for breakfast?  Bacon.  Of course.  And this granola.  😉

Family class

Are you guys watching any of the Olympics?  We have been tuning in over the weekend when we remember (while the kids are napping).  I don’t get into the Winter sports as much as Summer ones, but it’s still cool to have on in the background.  There’s still a buzz of excitement that comes with it, even if I have no more than 5% of my focus on it.

Anyway, our Saturday started off in a super special way!!

Family stroller strides class!

In honor of Valentine’s Day, the dads got to join in our workout and it was SOOO FUN.  I was really excited for Kyle to see what SS is like.  It was a packed class too, with so many of our friends and their families there.  At the end we took photos at the kissing booth and let the kids play at the park while the adults had coffee and hung out.  It was a GORGEOUS 65 degrees out and made me super excited for Spring.  This winter has been very mild and while I know that’s not good for the Earth, I’m very happy to avoid sub 50 temps.

No better way to kick off the weekend in my opinion.

By 1130 the hunger pangs were turning our little monsters into major grump faces, so we hit the road.  We stopped at sbux on the way home and then I fed everyone before showering and getting lunch for myself.

Still trying to get rid of fridge scrapings, I used up the last of the mac nut crusted salmon.

I massage kale and shredded carrots in the spicy peanut dressing from TJs and then added avo and roasted cashews.

After lunch it was time to get my prep on!

I’ll share more about everything I did to get myself set up for the week later…for now, though, I’ll carry on to dinner.

Kyle was in the mood to grill, so we had steaks with roasted potatoes and Brussels with some leftover bearnaise sauce that I had in the fridge.

All the yes!  Last meal worthy dinner right here.

I know it’s not super exciting, but roasted Brussels would definitely be on my plate for my last meal.  Probably salmon too.  And then every single chocolate thing I could get my hands on.

No chocolate on this night though.  I researched kombucha making for the hundredth time, while sipping on a bottle of kombucha.  Time to start collecting my bottles for when I do my own brew!

Friday night in

Leftover night!

This goat brie is so good!  Creamy and mild and the perfect pair to the Jillz crackers.  We had almonds, dates and nectarine jam too…the sweet and savory contrast.

Kyle had rye wasa crackers.

Since dinner was so random and snacky I had a bunch of chocolate for dessert.

And then wound up feeling a little sick…oops.  Fail.

I’m going to try to get my sweet tooth back under control by taking a little hiatus from desserts.  Going forward.

I did stroller strides on Friday morning and skipped breakfast because my stomach was feeling off.

For lunch I made use of my prep – sautéed Brussels and a champagne vinaigrette – which I added to massaged kale, half an avo, candied pecans, and dried cranberries.  I can’t wait to roast more squash this weekend!  The salad was good, but missing that one extra ingredient to put it into amazing territory.

I was supposed to go out for dinner and drink with some girls but couldn’t make it in the end.  Luckily I had a gobble meal to the dinner rescue.

I loved the idea of this miso soy Buddha bowl as soon as I saw it on the menu.  I usually don’t go for the vegan options on gobble, but this one was unique enough that I decided to do it.

Also I saw that the tofu was Chinese five spice flavored and thought it was going to be HODO SOY brand (which I love!) and I was right!

I wasn’t sure if the kids would like it (they did) so I made extra tofu just in case (also using HODO SOY which I randomly happened to have on hand – usually I just buy the TJs or the Nasoya organic ones depending on what store I’m at).

The combo of carrots and edamame with an Asian sauce fits…but adding in beets and red onion?  Well I was slightly skeptical, but it was really delicious!

Quinoa for days!

Like I said, the kids ended up liking the five spice tofu, but I started them off with the plain Hodo Soy one.

Lime wedges, cilantro and avo on top…looking fancy fancy for sure.

This is what I love about gobble.  I’d never merge all these ingredients and yet, it worked out great.  The kids didn’t know what to make of the beets at first.  P loved them but V was wishy washy. P and I were happy to help take a few off her plate though.

After dinner my sister came to spend the night because they were breaking up their drive on the way to Tahoe.  For that reason I was happy my girls night was off because I haven’t seen her in a while.

The kids were in RARE form that night.  P is going through something that I won’t bother to put on the internet, but suffice it to say, there’s a lot of emotional stuff that (we think?) goes along with oit.  We are only told to look out for the obvious symptoms, but the same kind of thing happened with dairy.  His body is going through a lot and it’s impossible for us to understand, so I’m just trying to get through this phase.  IT IS EXHAUSTING.

TGIF my friends.

Salads of winter

My mantra.

Although Kyle wishes I could just eat without putting so much pressure on myself to have THE BEST meal every single time I feed myself.  I do too, if I’m being honest, but that’s just one of my quirks!  I want my food to be the most amazing delicious awesomeness and no amount of discussion is going to shake that from my system.  I know it’s insane but it is what it is. ANYWAY.

Hey Urban Remedy!  It’s been a while!  I grabbed The Vegan Caesar on Friday when we were at WF after P’s oit.

I dove in head first come Tuesday.

Plus some crackers on the side.

These are definitely my favorite crackers right now.  They are on par with Mary’s Gone crackers, but different.  They’re a little like stoned wheat crackers in flavor, but without the grains, obviously.

And then, because that wasn’t quite enough (I must have done stroller strides this morning) I had some of this PEANUT BUTTER rice crispy treat.

It was huge, with pretzels, chocolate chips, marshmallows, and OMG was it gooooood.

NOM NOM NOMNOMNOMNOM.

Dessert mid-day?  Uhhhh, ok?!  This was another thing I got at WF.  Maybe I’d been thinking about it so long that I couldn’t get it off my brain.  In any event, I finally gave in and had half of it.  I wasn’t super impressed with the first bite, but next thing I know the addictive sugar hit my blood stream and I was 15 more bites in…the struggle is real.

Gobble meal for dinner!

The package hadn’t yet arrived when we left at 3:30 for gymnastics so I knew I was going to have to be on my A game when we got back home at 5:30 to get dinner on the table in a timely manner.  As soon as we were unloaded from the car and the kids were settled I grabbed the dinner kits and got to work.

Thank goodness gobble is fast.

It still took 20-30 minutes, but it’s pretty impossible to make a full meal any faster than that.

This was the pan roasted culotte steak with a veggie hash and lemon tahini dressing and it was really good.

The lemon tahini dressing is what really sold me when I saw it.  Also, it had a bunch of unique veggies that I would never buy on my own.  Like endive!  I love endive, but the kids weren’t that into it (understandable).  Kyle’s meh on it, too, but it loses much of it’s bitterness when it’s sautéed so I was hopeful the rest of the fam would go for it.

Following the steak timing instructions lead to a p e r f e c t l y cooked steak.

Ah-mazing meal.

And then, before I knew it, my sweet tooth hit me.  UGH.  It’s like a whack a mole.  You think you got it tamed and under control and then it pops it’s head up again.  Hiiiii, you neeeeeed me.

Heaven.

Tea and sweets and then zzzzzzz.

The next few days were super bizarre so I don’t have many food pics.  My friend and I did a babysitting swap because we had kindergarten info nights (on different nights) so rather than pay for someone to watch our kids we just alternated with the others’ kids.  I don’t have dinner pics as a result.

Made a little parfait thang for myself on Wednesday morning.  My home-made cashew yogurt is officially gone. 🙁

Lunch of champions.  AGAIN.  Can we just start calling this Elise’s Winter salad?

The next morning I had the heel piece of my instant pot loaf with cashew butter.

I biked P to school so it was eaten on the later side, before V and I went to open gym.

I was out of squash and roasted nuts, so I had to do something different for lunch (womp womp).  I forgot about this kewpie dressing!  It’s as finger licking good as I remembered it being!  Such awesome roasted sesame flavor. Definitely a good consolation salad.

I massaged the dressing into the kale and then added in half an avo too before topping it off with leftover macadamia crusted salmon.

Photos don’t do it justice!  It was goooooood.

Once again, no dinner pics.  I had dessert though.  Again!  Note to self: get sweet tooth back under control.  In other news, my kombucha spending has blown up the budget so Kyle has agreed to let me brew my own!!!  WEEEE.  Send me ALL THE DEETS!!!