baking · comfort food · Cookies · dessert · jam · peanut butter · Sandwiches · snacks · Yummy

PB & J (Cookie) Sammies

I had a to-do list today. It consisted of the following items:

  • Acupuncture for my tennis elbow (ouch)
  • Hang out with Carrie
  • Grab a delicious pastry
  • Buy a frame at Michael’s
  • Get liability insurance for the winter farmer’s market
  • Apply for winter farmer’s market
  • Write a blog post

The first 4 were done easily. I even went so far as to nap during my acupuncture appointment, so I feel as though I was being extra efficient. Then I went online to purchase liability insurance. I wanted to get signed up for my market of choice as soon as fucking possible, as I’m constantly worried that the spots are filling up (they are). I also need to sign up ASAFP because I really want a Sunday spot. If I don’t get a Sunday spot, I’m going to have to arrange things at work to make Saturdays work, and that’s a whole fucking thing. I am not alone in my desire for a Sunday spot, so I need to get my shit together now.  As I’m filling out the forms, it asks for my business name. Fuck.

Fuck fuck fuckity fuck.

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I’m currently registered under Kelsey’s Cakes, the rated G named I chose after the church-run farmer’s market wouldn’t let me use Eat Me Bakery (but it was totally cool for a whiskey bar to sponsor the market, of course). This means that I have to most likely re-register. This isn’t a problem, but it adds time, which I don’t have. So now I’m left sitting and waiting to hear back from someone that might be able to help me out at the Minnesota Department of Agriculture. Bureaucracy.

Those items will not be crossed off my to-do list today. Sigh.

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Hannah had a baby. That baby is Mira, and she is over a year old already. Here she is devouring a PB & J Sammie with reckless abandon. I wish this photo had sound, as she was making adorable little suckling noises… no doubt to make sure she got every last drop of jam. A girl after my own heart.

Anyway, I had my very last market day last Saturday. I mean, not my very last EVER, but my very last for this season. I ended up making these delightful little sandwich cookies on a whim the night before. I knew I wanted to do something with peanut butter and jelly, as they are my favorite flavor combo. No one really uses these flavors much, likely because so many kids are allergic to peanuts now. Outside of that concern, I’m not sure why this classic duo is so often overlooked. I mean, even I only have one recipe that contains these flavors. What am I even doing with my life? Oh fuck, I guess I also made a mug cake recently, didn’t I? Shit. I totally forgot. I guess I’m finally getting my shit together. Get ready for all things peanut butter and jelly! Pro tip: Add PB & J to your vanilla ice cream. You’re welcome.

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PB & J (Cookie) Sammies (original recipe found here)

For the cookies:

1/2 cup butter, softened

1/2 cup peanut butter (I used creamy Jif)

1/2 cup granulated sugar

1/2 cup  dark brown sugar

1 egg

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 cup instant oats

3/4 cup all-purpose flour

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon baking powder

For the filling:

1/3 cup peanut butter

1/3 cup jam of choice (I used homemade raspberry)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line your baking sheets with parchment paper or a silpat mat and set aside. Cream together butter, peanut butter, and both sugars. Add in egg and vanilla and mix well. In a separate bowl, mix flour, baking soda and powder, salt together. Slowly mix into the wet ingredients before finally hand stirring in the oats. Mix until just combined. I used a food scale to get my cookies all the same size. If you’re doing this, I recommend 11g per cookie. If not, about a tablespoon of dough per cookie. I was able to fit about 15 cookies per baking sheet. Once you have all of them lined up on the cookie sheets, use a fork to press them down in a criss-cross pattern. Bake for about 10 minutes. Once fully cooled, add the peanut butter and jam and sandwich the cookies together. To avoid a soggy cookie, make sure to do a very thin layer of peanut butter on the jam side. Shovel them all into your face, without sharing a single one.

Makes about 24 sandwich cookies.

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DO THIS.

Asian food · avocado · Dating · dinner · easy · gluten free · healthy · lunch · quick · Rice · Sauces · snacks · vegan · Vegetables · vegetarian · veggies · Yummy

Vietnamese Summer Rolls and New Pants!

I did it… I retired my private pants. It would have been a sad day, except I now have 2 pairs of the GREATEST PANTS ON EARTH. My boyfriend (that’s right, I said it) refers to them as my “Aladdin pants,” due to their majestic flowy-ness (He was actually mocking me, but I’m sure it was done with love). I had plans with him the other day, and he texted ahead of time asking if we could just stay in. I was like, “Fuck yeah.  I was planning on wearing my fancy sweatpants anyway.” Since my new fancy sweatpants have huge slits up the outside of each leg, I couldn’t actually wear them to his place (it’s too cold for that nonsensical bullshit). That means I showed up in leggings and literally took my pants off in his entryway to put on my new, sexy sweatpants. Yes, sweatpants can totally be sexy (he would disagree, but we’re not asking him). He did agree on their functionality, stating that they are essentially the pants version of “sticking a leg out from under the blanket when sleeping.”

I bought a second pair to keep at his place, so I can stop stripping in his entryway. I’m sure he’s disappointed.

I also wore these to the AcroYoga retreat last weekend. I brought an entire bag of clothes – probably 3 full outfits. But I only wore these fucking amazing pants, and the outfit I drove in (both there and back). I mean, honestly, why put on something that will make me less happy?

Speaking of acro, my lovely acro friend, Jamie, taught me how to make these rolls. The recipe called for cilantro, but she is a kind soul that would never even think of having such a monstrous thing near me. They are oddly filling, so make sure you’re hungry. Also, we ate them with mushroom and tofu miso soup, which was a nice appetizer with it. They’re crazy simple, and really refreshing in the middle of winter. They’d also be nice in the summer when you don’t want to turn the stove or oven on.

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Vietnamese Summer Rolls

Rice paper

Rice noodles (cooked according to package instructions)

Big leaves of lettuce (I used Romaine, but they were a little too huge)

Avocado, sliced (critical to add because otherwise everything just tastes like crunchy water – you need fat!!)

Carrots/Cucumber/Bell pepper, sliced thinly

Bean sprouts (I forgot, which made me sad)

Siracha

Peanut butter and Hoisin (equal parts, mixed together, for the sauce)

YOU WILL NEED WAX PAPER FOR THIS RECIPE

For the rice paper: Use a large saute pan filled with warm water (NOT HOT) to soak the rice paper. You’ll do this one at a time, and they only need to be soaked for maybe one full minute at most (I kept feeling mine, and pulled it out once it was soft-ish).* Once the rice paper is soft and foldable, pull it out of the water and spread it out on wax paper. You can lay out a few before starting to fill them, but don’t let them sit too long (they get sticky).

For the filling: Start by placing one large lettuce leaf in the center of each rice paper. From there, layer avocado and veggies of choice. Top with a small handful of rice noodles and a heavy squirt of Siracha.

To roll: Fold the top and bottom of the rice paper over the filling. Then choose a side to start at – pull that side of the rice paper all the way across the filling and tuck it under the lettuce leaf. Continue to roll in that direction. The rice paper will stick to itself. It takes a few tries to get it right, but the janky ones are delicious, too, so don’t stress about it.

For the sauce: Mix equal parts peanut butter and hoisin sauce together. I ended up adding a tiny bit of warm water as well, because the sauce was super thick. The sauce adds a much needed fat as well, so definitely don’t skip it.

Serve with the sauce on the side. Race your friend to see how many each of you can eat (it’ll be shockingly few). Make more sauce and eat it on everything.

*There is definitely an inappropriate joke to be made here.

comfort food · dinner · easy · jam · lunch · peanut butter · quick · Sandwiches · snacks · vegan · vegetarian

PB & J + Potato Chips

I went swimsuit shopping today. I walked in there with all this confidence… and was immediately put in my place. First of all, why is it so fucking difficult to get something in my size that isn’t fucking disgusting? I’m tired of hiding under skirts and extra layers to hide my thighs and hold my belly in. It’s exhausting. I just want to wear a swimsuit that is comfortable, and cute. Is that so much to fucking ask?

First, I tried a little online shopping at Aerie. They are my go to source for the best underwear, and they refuse to photoshop their models. Plus! They just signed a plus size model to model their standard size clothing. This is a big deal, guys. Anyway, I thought for sure I’d find something on their website.

I am a naive person. Or maybe just a little dumb. Maybe both. Who knows?

Those fuckers didn’t even have my size at all. Apparently, my boobs are too big to be contained by Aerie.

So I went to Target today. I buy lots of clothing at Target, and can always shop their standard size section (I’m one of those people that can shop in both plus size and standard size… usually). So I walk in, and am overwhelmed by all the options right inside the front door. There are stripes and polka dots, bikinis with cute bows and ruffles, one pieces with these cool sheer stripes, all covering 2 huge walls, plus several racks in the middle of the floor. I went digging, highly optimistic.

Sigh. I’m just so naive.

NOTHING FUCKING FIT.

You want to know how many options they had in their plus size section? There was one rack, and everything on it was a variation of the same black, skirted, one piece. God forbid someone see my upper thighs!

Swimsuit skirts can fuck off. I don’t need to hide behind you anymore!

I like to think I’m bold enough to wear a bikini, and just tell everyone to fuck right off. Clearly, the clothing industry has other ideas.

Fuck you, society. Stop body shaming me.

Also, put some fucking underwire in those swimsuits! WTF?

PB & J + Potato Chips

2 pieces of white bread

Jam of choice (I chose my fancy homemade plum jam, but you do you)

Peanut butter

Potato chips

Assemble sandwich in obvious manner. Then smoosh the sandwich a little bit to crush the chips a bit. Shove in your mouth with extra potato chips.

I think this is the best thing that’s ever happened to my mouth.

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breakfast · easy · Fruit · gluten free · healthy · peanut butter · quick · Smoothie · snacks · vegan · Yummy

Eva’s Peanut Butter Banana Smoothie

I’m constantly trying to be healthier. This is contradicted by my excessive cookie and donut consumption (not to mention my drinking), but I do the best I can (no I don’t).

I have developed this habit of eating snacks instead of meals lately. I don’t know how this happened… I’ve never been the type of person to substitute a snack for a meal. I mean, more food versus less food? More food always wins. The other night I literally ate a handful of tortilla chips before collapsing into bed. Since when does 150 calories of chips count as a meal to me? It’s all very confusing.

Today for lunch, I ate half of a veggie wrap. HALF. I’ve never eaten half of anything. Except a pizza. I always eat half a pizza.

This may not surprise anyone, but I’m a recovering binge eater. I didn’t have the words to describe what I was doing until about a year ago, but I’ve known that I “emotional eat” occasionally (or, when I was in college, a LOT). It’s been mostly under control for the last few years, but I still indulge a lot (which is not the same as a full on binge). This eating half of something, and saving the rest for later is completely new. I’ve done that on occasion, but not without it being a real struggle for me. Lately, I’ve actually been recognizing when I’m full, and then (gasp) not eating any more. 

When did I become such a balanced human being?

I’m wondering if it has to do with all the yoga, and being more aware and accepting of my body. This is why I’m so adamant about loving your body, and encouraging others to love their bodies. There’s no one way to look. We’re all different, and there is nothing wrong with that. Shaming each other only creates anxiety and eating disorders. No one really wants to cause that for someone else, right? Unless you’re a real asshole. In which case, go fuck yourself. I’m not listening to you.

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I also used to obsessively count calories, which I realize contradicts a binge eating disorder, but is true nonetheless. One of my go-to foods during the calorie counting phase (do “phases” last for years?!) was this banana peanut butter smoothie. My friend (and former cafe coworker), Eva, made it for me. Her original recipe is a bit simpler, but this is still a very quick “meal,” and I’ve added some more nutritional value (back then I was only worried about it being the least amount of calories possible). I no longer pay attention to caloric intake, but choose to eat whatever I want in moderation. And I always try to add extra nutrients to my food via chia seeds, flax seed, nuts, an added veggie, etc.

Also, sometimes I want mac and cheese for dinner… and that means I get to have it. Anyone who says otherwise can fuck off.

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Eva’s Peanut Butter Banana Smoothie

1 banana (or two, for added creaminess)

6ish large ice cubes

1/2 cup almond milk

1 large spoonful of peanut butter (This is something I used to measure obsessively – don’t do that! Just throw in a big spoonful and be happy!)

1 tablespoon flax seed meal

1 tablespoon chia seeds

Throw it all in a blender, and blend until smooth. Sometimes I add berries. Sometimes I omit the peanut butter and add a lot of berries, and some OJ. Do what you want.

Don’t let anyone tell you that you’re not awesome just the way you are.

 

baking · cake · Cheesecake · chocolate · comfort food · dessert · peanut butter · Yummy

Butterfinger Cheesecake

I am exhausted.

I went to the grocery store the other day, and had all this baking shit to buy. The shopping basket was overflowing. I got half way through my shopping, and decided I couldn’t carrying anything else, so I went home. Does that ever happen to you? Like, I just no longer had the energy to even carry my groceries.

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I’ve been meaning to post this recipe for weeks, but then I thought I’d wait, because all I’ve been posting is sweets. I promise that’s not all I’m eating – but it’s the holidays! Baking is mandatory. The other cookie and cake recipes will be shelved for the time being – this is my last dessert recipe for awhile.

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So. Butterfinger cheesecake came about for a coworker’s birthday at the beginning of the month. She requested cheesecake. When I asked what kind, she thought about it for a moment, then shouted, “Butterfinger!” as if it was the best idea she’d ever had.

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My cheesecakes are always baked in a pie pan. Why? Because I’m not fancy enough for a spring form pan. Fuck that shit. I wouldn’t even know how to use it. Pie shaped cheesecake is just as good. Don’t judge me.

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Butterfinger Cheesecake

For the crust:

1 1/2 cups chocolate graham cookies (I used Simply Amy Bunny Grahams)

1/3 cup sugar

1/8 teaspoon salt

3 tablespoons butter, melted

2 tablespoons peanut butter, melted

Whisk melted butter and peanut butter together. Mix all ingredients together, and press into the bottom and up the sides of a pie pan. Fill immediately, or refrigerate to use later.

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For the filling:

2 (8oz) packages of cream cheese, softened (please don’t use a low fat variety – that’s gross)

3 eggs

2/3 cup sugar

A splash of vanilla

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Beat cream cheese in a mixer, until light and fluffy. Then add eggs, one at a time, vanilla, and sugar. Mix well, until everything is fully incorporated. Pour into prepared crust. Bake for 40 minutes. The center should still be slightly jiggly, with edges slightly browned. Let cool before adding the topping.

For the topping:

1 1/2 cups Butterfinger bars, chopped

1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

1/2 cup heavy cream

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Sprinkle the candy over the cake in an even layer. In a small sauce pan, bring cream to a boil, and immediately remove from heat. Place chocolate chips in a small bowl, and pour in the hot cream. Let sit for 2 minutes. Stir together until chocolate is fully melted. Drizzle over the top (or glob, in my case). Refrigerate until ready to serve. If you’re lucky, you have leftover candy that you get to eat in private. Maybe top it off with a salad, because, you know, balance.