BEEN THERE: FROM SKEPTIC TO SO-ON-BOARD AT GRASSROOTS ALCHEMY

I stumbled upon the brand new Grassroots Alchemy while walking down Melrose the other day and  I was first drawn in by this:

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Because Bulletproof is delicious , I thought I would immediately become BFF’s with this new resto. Plus, it’s so cute! AND so close to my house.

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But I have to be honest, after looking over the mostly raw, vegan menu at Grassroots Alchemy in Los Angeles, I was pretty skeptical. I’ve had lots of sounds-good-but-tastes-gross vegan food in the past and was ready to walk out the door… but I could tell The Boy was not going to let me back out– he, the chain restauraunt loving, organic is a scam, pro gluten thankyouverymuch kind of boy, seemed very into trying this place (weird, I know!)

We wanted to share a light bite before getting on with our Sunday plans. So we opted with the Sunflower “tuna” sandwhich (that would be “tuna fish” made out of sunflower seeds)

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And the Superfood Machiatto smoothie (made with almond milk):

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I was still skeptical…

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(my hmm not sure about this place face)

But then, the food came. And I was impressed because it looked pretty delish:

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First up… The Smoothie. It tasted like a this-can’t-be-healthy-milkshake with a the perfect coffee fix. Um, yes please.

The Boy and I sipped that bad boy down way too quickly and then it was over. Like a great Backstreet Boys concert it just went by way too fast and I was sad I didn’t have a time machine to go back sixty seconds to experience this gem again. Or maybe the right move would be to go back 10 minutes and order one for each of us.

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SO not sharing this next time.

Next up… The Sunflower Seed Tuna Sandwich:

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It looked sort of like tuna. And it had that tuna taste… but crunchier and lemon-ier. And it was REALLY good. And I can’t lie to you, I’ve been seriously craving this sammie ever since we went. The brioche (gluten free!) bread was amazing (I think it might be the one from Rising Hearts Bakery that is amazing.com)  and the “tuna” was really and truly good.

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Grassroots Alchemy, I’ve been converted!!

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(Semi) DIY Dinner Party Decor! (and by semi, I mean store bought and self assembled so not DIY at all)

I think I’m officially an adult.

I know as a Jew I officially became an adult when I had my Bat-Mitzvah — which now that I think about it, since I did technically become an adult in 1998, it makes perfect sense that my taste in music is sooo “grown up” (#BSB4EVER)

And I know as a citizen of this great nation I officially became an adult at 18 and then again at 21… but really I don’t think there’s anything adult about drinking until everything spins.

But hosting your first dinner party? That’s a full on admission that you would rather sit around with friends and large amounts of sweets/wine instead of heading to the bars until 4am. And it takes a REAL adult to admit that.

So last week I hosted my very first dinner party. Complete with decor and a pre-set table and things I baked and cooked.  And it took pre-planning and pre-ordering and many trips to the grocery store (and of course pre-looking up the number of the closest pizza place should my food be a total disaster). Soo I’m pretty sure this means I’m supposed to be like discussing stock options and how Taylor Swift is SO terrible but um, stock options are boring and Taylor Swift writes catchy pop songs that I adore dancing around my apartment/blasting in my car/singing in my shower to. I know- so very adult of me.

I had a lot of fun planning the table decor and here’s the truth: Hosting a dinner party might be very adult but on most days, I’m still stuck in 1998 at heart. So I wasn’t about to get all legit fancy up in this thing. While I orginally intended to be fancy and grown up with REAL plates and a lot of things i made myself, I realized, you’ve got to be true to yourself even when you’re throwing a “grown up” dinner party and I’m just simply not that grown up.

Also, I would rather pay a little extra to have something cute that someone else spent making than attempt it myself and have it look like a 8 year olds art project. Not to mention, I wanted something that was easy clean up but still looked cute cause cleaning up, is not my kind of fun.

So here’s what I did:

1) I got disposable plastic gold tablecloths from Target and then spruced them up with these uh-dorable burlap gold polka dotted table runners from Tea & Sugar on Etsy.

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2. I bought these super cute place mats from Target’s Hanukkah Aisle (a very small but impressive aisle)

— As an aside- have you all seen this Mench on a Bench thing? I resisted buying but am seriously regretting that life choice.

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3. I used mason jars as my vases and these candle holders that I’ve had since my Oprah Show days to break up the flowers.

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4. Then I added some Hanukkah gelt and plastic Hanukkah coins (from Oriental Trading) as accents.

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4. I set the table with these cute chevron plates from Cheeky (available at Target) (and with every Cheeky item you buy, they donate a meal to someone in need, right here in the US!) and yes, I used plastic silverware. This whole table-scape meant easy cleanup which means one very happy me.

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5. And then I (okay okay, The Boy did it!) strung some lights outside and hung up a Happy Hanukkah sign (all also from Target) and the dinner table set up was complete!

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Bring on the guests! and the food!

While I don’t love the look of plastic silverware, I do think for this type of dinner it worked! And the fun plates from Cheeky paired with the patterned runner and place mats really helped add some fun textures/layers to the table! I had a lot of fun creating this look and it’s inspired me to want to host more dinner parties!

More to come on my very first dinner party! If I can do it, really and truly ANYONE can!

xoJ

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When Life Hands You A Messed Up DIY Ombre Cake… Make… Cake Balls!

Happy Hanukah! Or is it Chanukah? Or Hanukkah? I can’t keep up. Leave it to us Jewish folks to not be able to decide how to spell the name of our holiday. In honor of the big H (or CH depending which spelling you choose) I was inspired to throw my very first dinner party… the show I’m working on now made me think I could like totally for sure throw a DIY dinner party where I cooked everything, made every decor and looked like I was a living Pinterest board/Etsy shop.

What I quickly learned: this show has given me false confidence. I’m like one of those people who try out for American Idol thinking I am the next Mariah Carey only to get told by Simon Cowell that my singing would even make deaf cows cry.

Okay so maybe I’m not that bad, but I’ve still got work to do! This whole do-everything-yourself-stuff is NOT easy. Not to mention the lines at Michael’s this time of year. Who knew?! I have mucho more respect for the DIY’ers of the world!

One of the desserts I was most excited to make was a (gluten free) blue Ombre cake (for Hanukkah of course!) that was supposed to look like this (only a smaller version):

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I ordered the food coloring gel and made my four colors in mini loaf pans… and all looked great…

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Until the time came to layer it… and well, I was told it was un-serveable.

And even though I had a million more desserts to serve, I almost lost it (which is why there are no photos…) I was SO excited to make this perfect ombre cake and was not very happy at being told I should just throw it out and what I should have/could have done to make it work. #thankyouCaptainObvious #nowisNOTthetime

I almost gave up… but then I thought WWPD (What Would Pinterest Do?)

And it was right there in my kitchen that I had my very own a-ha moment!

In a fit of determination/rage/I will make this work, I mushed up the entire cake and frosting bowl and decided to make… cake balls! I had never made cake balls before and I had no idea how to do it but I figured mushing up the cake and frosting was a good start. Once the cake and frosting were mixed together, I rolled them up into balls and stuck them in the freezer for 15 minutes to firm up. Then I rolled them in chocolate and decorated them with sprinkles and presto chango my crappy looking cake became yummy looking drops of delish:

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I stuck them in the fridge to set and then plated them for the party:

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and… they were a hit! With a surprise of Hanukkah/Chanukah/Hanukah inside!

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Blue cake balls!

Lesson learned folks, never give up! It’s not over until the cake is served in one form or another…

The party turned out to be a great success and minus this one little setback, I really did have a blast planning/prepping and throwing it! And now, I have an excuse to reattempt the ombre cake! More details on the party to come!

Would love to hear about your favorite DIY dessert or any time you were able to rescue an almost un-rescuable recipe and turn it into something great!

xoJ

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Win It Wednesday! Dairy Free Ice Cream and an ADORBS Apron!

Does anyone else feel like this week is going by slowly?

Maybe it’s because last week was a three day work week and this week is back to regularly scheduled programming or maybe it’s the rain since those of us in Southern California don’t know how to handle anything aside from 75 degrees and sunshine but I’m more than ready for the weekend.

Although I do have to admit, I was SO beyond jazzed for the rain yesterday– yes of course because we need the rain here in California but if I’m being honest, it was mainly because I got to pull out my cute navy rain jacket and boots! and once I was able to find it (it’s only rained about three times since I moved here 2.5 years ago…)  it was a very happy reunion.

AND I got to wear leggings and an oversize sweater to work!

It’s the little things, folks.

And since it’s the little things that make us happy, I wanted to spread some cheer this Wednesday… we are at the halfway point. Friday, you’re thisclose to being here. We will be throwing back tequila shots and tearing up the dance floor stuffing our faces with paleo pumpkin bars while watching Shark Tank in our pajamas saying TGIF before we know it.

But until then we still have Wednesday.

And now, we have Win It Wednesday!

In honor of my recent foray into cooking lots and lots and lots of dairy free/gluten free/paleo friendnly desserts, I wanted to giveaway two great items to you!

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First up: Dairy-Free Ice Cream by Kelly V. Brozyna a fab book from the fab blogger of The Spunky Coconut-- this uh-mazing cookbook has countless pages of delish desserts (and not just ice cream!) that will make you say “bring it on, brain freeze. And cookies. And brownies. And cookie dough ice-cream.”

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You can make things like this:

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and this:

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and this:

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and this:

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Cookie. Dough.

And as long as I’m giving away something for the kitchen, I thought why not give away this totally adorbs Jessie Steele Apron? I mean, pink polka dots and gray ribbons? It is so adorable it’s motivation enough to want to cook/bake/make dairy free ice cream for hours on end so long as you get to wear this cutie pie (mmm pie) while doing it!

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How to win? It’s simple! Just head to my instagram page and start to follow along! Like the photo with the picture of the giveaway items and I will randomly select two winners (one for the book and one for the apron) next Tuesday at 6pm PST!

And while you’re at it, share your favorite dairy-free dessert with me!! I’m always looking for new ones to try out!

Happy almost Friday!

xoJ

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Paleo Off The Shelf: Breakfast Wins

Hello there! Happy Monday to you!

So I know it’s Monday and I know I usually do some sort of “Made It Monday” post but I’ve gotta be honest here– after 21 days of Sugar Detoxing, 2 days of full on Thanksgiving cooking (including making my first turkey!!) and a full four days of sugar re-toxing I really just don’t have it in me to head into my kitchen and whip up some Paleo magic

But after a few days of we-are-BFF’s-for-life with sugar, I do need some healthy things I can “make” in a flash.

The old pre-cooking/blogging/no sugar me was all about picking up/ordering foods that were good and good for me but where other people put in the blood, sweat and (sugar free) tears and I just… ate them. Those days were much simpler. I had so much more time to shop on Etsy and watch Castle (yes, I know I’m the only twenty something who watches that show)

So in order to get back the “old me”  I’m heading back to the shelves… it’s really where I feel most at home… I get some sort of thrill watching my bank account get depleted while shelling out big bucks on tasty health food items knowing that 1) these things will taste great and I didn’t have to do any of the cooking for so much tastiness and 2) I’m helping small businesses with a big commitment to health and wellness.

So here are my two latest and greatest discoveries for my Paleo Off The Shelf Finds!

I got these both from Amazon… First up Paleo Flakes from Julian Bakery.

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I love cereal as a late night snack (and who doesn’t love a good “Breakfast for Dinner” night?!)  but truth be told, I was expecting these to be… not that good seeing as it’s only one ingredient: coconut.

But paired with some unsweetened almond milk, they have the perfect crunchy to sweet ratio and make the perfect anytime snack! (warning, they are may-jorly addicting! but since they have a heft price-tag ($8.99 per box), it helps to exercise (ha!) some portion control!)

Next up: Mikey’s Muffins
I didn’t defrost these correctly… at all… but brushed with a bit of avocado oil and a pinch of sea salt and these were incredibly satisfying and tasty! So I can only imagine how great they would be if I did it the right way. And with only 95 calories and only six WHOLE REAL FOOD ingredients, it’s an English Muffin I can feel good about! ($6.95 — four muffins per box)

I’m excited to try out the other flavors (toasted onion and cinnamon raisin)

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Got any good new finds to share with me?! Let’s hear!

xoJ!

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HOLLA FOR CHALLAH!!! (PALEO-IFIED!)

It’s Friday! And it’s the day after Thanksgiving. And while most people are super thankful for the adorbs sweaters and boots and purses they got on super-sale (hey, I’m all about that, too) this post too-much-turkey-day I’m thankful for something else– Challah. That is Paleo. Because bread.  Jewish eggy delicious bread. The rest of the world has Christmas, and we have Challah. And ever since going gluten free, I just haven’t been able to find anything that tastes like the Challah from the days of yesteryear. Until Now:

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I MADE THAT!

But first… how was your Thanksgiving? Mine was fabulous, thanks for asking. I held out on anything sugar until the night before Thanksgiving where I tried out one of the Paleo chocolate chip cookies I made from Primal Bakeshop‘s mix and holy yumminess it was good. And then yesterday I rejoined team sugar full time. Between cranberry sauces and mashed sweet potatoes with marshmallows and 12 thousand desserts, it was like The Twenty One Day Sugar Detox never happened!

Until today, where I’ve pretty much felt like I’ve been hit by a truck all day long.

A truck load of sugar, that is. See even my jokes are suffering. I’m struggling today folks. But those Pumpkin Bars are calling my name… what to do? what to do?

Any who back to this gem we call Paleo Challah. I saw the gorgeous recipe pop up on my Instagram feed around Rosh Hashannah- the recipe was created by paleo guru and fellow Member of the Tribe- ZenBelly and I wanted to try it ever since. I had bought all the ingredients back in September but never got around to making it.

Then on Wednesday night when I was in full fledged baking for Thanksgiving mode and already had three different desserts going, all at the same time, I somehow thought that would be a GREAT time to make the Challah.

I was very very wrong about that… and my kitchen looked liked this:

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(True Life, I ain’t no ordinary food blogger #messykitchen)

But you know what I wasn’t wrong about? This delicious thing we call a Grain-Free Challah! Holla for Challah everyone!

You can get the full recipe here!

I started with three different size bowls:

First bowl- 1 tbsp dry activated yeast, 1 tbsp honey, 1/2 cup warm water and set it aside until it gets “foamy and active” (note, I had NO idea what that meant until it happened… still a newbie “chef” up in here)

Second bowl: 8 eggs mixed with 1/4 cup honey and 12 tbsp melted ghee

Third bowl: 1.5 cups Almond flour, 1 and 3/4 cups Tapioca flour, and 1 and 1/4 cups of Potato Starch along with 2 tbsp of Psyllium Husks and 1/5 teaspoons of sea salt:

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I first combined the dry mix with the liquid egg/honey/ghee mixture, then when my yeast was foamy like this:

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I added it to the mixture:

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and blended it up for about two minutes:

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Until it looked like this:

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Then I covered it and set it aside to rise for about 75 minutes (until it doubled in size):

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After the 75 minutes, the dough was thicker and had risen so I preheated my over to 350 degrees and poured half the batter into one large loaf pan and split the remaining half into four mini ones (which I greased with coconut oil):

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I baked them for ten minutes and then took them out and brushed them with a tablespoon of the egg/honey/ghee mixture that I had previously set aside before mixing:

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And then I put them back in the over for ten more minutes until they bounced back when I pushed into the bread.

Then I took them out and waited for them to cool…

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and by that I mean I waited 30 seconds before cutting into one… (I’m never good at the whole waiting to cool part)

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It smelled like challah…

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And it tasted like it too! I couldn’t believe it! and even my non paleo eating family liked it!

This is as close as it gets to real deal challah that is not only gluten free… but paleo too?! Um, yes please.

How pretty!

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Challah! (Is Delicious!)

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A Shabbat Shalom Indeed!!!!

Hope you all had a fabulous, gluttonous Thanksgiving and an even better weekend ahead!

xoJ

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WHEN FOOD LOOKS UGLY BUT TASTES GOOD… A STORY IN KITCHEN FAILS

Happy Monday!!

It really is a very happy Monday because today marks the first day post 21-Day Sugar Detox! I can’t believe we made it! Honestly, it went by pretty fast (for me at least… pretty sure The Boy feels differently) and I feel inspired to keep it up. Well at least until Thanksgiving.  Because, pumpkin pie. And apple crisp. And cookies…

I can say now, post 21DSD that prior to starting this, I wasn’t entirely convinced that your cravings for sugar could go away. But I (shockingly) really don’t crave a lot of the things I missed in week one! I know, I know, I’m annoyed with myself for saying that too.

Anywho– last weekend, The Boy and I let cooking take over our lives. We spent the ENTIRE weekend Costco’ing and grocery store shopping and cooking so that we had food prepped for the entire week. It started out all fun and games… I was a Martha Jewart with my “Not Sweet Donuts” and he, a full fledged Mario Jewtali whipping up tomato sauce and ketchup from scratch (I know, right?!)

But then it overtook the entire weekend and we both vowed never again. Cooking a meal together here and there… good. Cooking for hours and hours on end? That’s where all relationships go to die a slow (cooker) death.

So this weekend was supposed to be all actual fun and games. But somehow, I kept getting sucked back into the kitchen. The raw cauliflower and broccoli in the fridge was begging to be roasted. And the 1/2 can of pumpkin and green tipped banana that was about to turn ripe? I mean what was I supposed to do? Just let it them sit there? There were Not Sweet Donuts to be made, people! I TRIED to relax, really I did.  But I kept hearing the coconut butter in the pantry saying “make me into a truffle, woman!”

I don’t know who I am anymore!

For my final #21DSD cooking fest, I really wanted to try these veggie patties from the 21 Day Sugar Detox book. Diane Sanfilippo (the creator) says they make great “buns” for burgers and are also great on their own so I figured they seemed both easy and yummy.  And since there were carrots in the fridge (okay, I may or may not have gone out to buy said carrots) I really had no other choice but to whip these patties up.

AND the total prep time said 10 minutes and it was just a few simple ingredients… So I took it to the kitchen!

I shredded up 4 cups of carrots and zucchini. But that part alone took seventeen years. I was already feeling defeated but I am not a quitter (well I did quit the piano in like 4th grade. And tennis)

So I carried on…

I mixed up three eggs beaten with 1/2 tsp salt, 1/2 tsp pepper and 1/2 tsp garlic powder and then mixed in 1/4 cup of coconut flour until it became dough like:

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And then I tried to squeeze out the excess water in the veggies which turned into one hot orange mess. After that, I added the veggies to the mixture:

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I added coconut oil to the skillet and added 1/4 cup of the mixture in blobs on my pan over medium-high heat:

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All seemed to go well… Until it was time to flip… and they completely fell apart…

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(Not to mention they were burnt… #oops)

And at the end once plated, the “patties” looked like this:

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And not like THIS:

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Hmmm.

Take note dear readers: I am an honest woman. It would’ve been easy to just not post this blog at all– and never share this mess of a veggie patty kitchen fail but I’m not one of those bloggers whose food looks all gorgeous and amazing and like you want to eat it SO badly that you’re embarrassingly wiping the drool from your face while looking at your instagram feed. I want you know that I don’t have a full plate of food porn on the first try… because this blog is all about trying and failing and trying some more… like that inspirational quote that is on like all of those greeting cards and kitchen magnets and stuff.

I want you to know that I fail. A lot. And this was one big hot plate of fail. #aintnoshame

The good news? They tasted good. Like really good! So maybe it’s more of a veggie hash than a patty?

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The next day while at a local natural market, Jimbo’s in San Diego, I saw they had already shredded up carrots and beets and zucchini and I thought maybe I wold have better luck. So I tried again… because well you know that quote…

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and these ones stayed together more! Success!

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but then… they also burned! Fail.

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Sooo not quite sure what the answer is here– other than don’t judge a food by it’s burnt and mushy appearance…because really they do taste great!

I do think it that its time to hang up my apron for a minute and take a weekend or two to just have actual outside of the kitchen fun and games.

I grabbed the leftover shredded veggies this morning to add to a my salad and found this note inside from The Boy:

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I think he’s ready for his non-cooking-picky-ordering-almond-latte-drinking GF back.

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THIRSTY THURSDAY… HOT CHOCOLATE THE PALEO/NO SUGAR WAY

It’s the most wonderful time of the year!

Sweater Weather!

While most of the country has moved far beyond sweater weather and into frozen tundra status, Southern California is finally seeing a cool down that allows me to finally break out my favorite clothes of the year: adorbs boots, cozy sweaters and cute jackets!

We had taken quite a long break but that made the reunion that much more exciting!

The other day at work, we taped our primetime holiday special and the set was decorated like we too lived in the frigid parts of the country, complete with “snow” (cotton that looks like snow- ah the magic of TV).

I don’t know if it was the fake snow or the Christmas trees, but mother nature got the hint and she gave us one very chilly night. So while we were taping for hours outside, everyone was happily sipping on hot chocolate and I had a total case of HCE (Hot Chocolate Envy)

I was left to my own devices… sipping on hot water and pretending it was hot chocolate. But even I, who used to (okay I still do) pretend I could sing– (I use this little anecdote to prove that I have a very vivid imagination), couldn’t convince myself that my mug of hot water was in fact, hot chocolate.

So last night while still battling the sniffles, and still in the sweater weather spirit, I decided to make my own, 21 day sugar detox friendly version

First: I took 1 cup of light coconut milk and 1/2 cup of full fat, 1 and a half cups of water, 1/2 cup of cocoa powder (unsweetened of course), 1/2 tsp of vanilla and some cinnamon and whisked it all together. Then I put it on the stove over medium heat and let it simmer:

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Once the cocoa was fully dissolved, I poured into a mug:

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And of course, enjoyed the piping hot drink with a truffle:

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It only took a few minutes to make (sweet!) and it’s a richer and bittersweet cocoa than your typical chemically pouch of cocoa.  Post 21dsd I would maybe add the slightest touch of honey or maple syrup to sweetened (probably 1/2 tsp per mug)

There was a lot left over so I stuck it in the fridge and decided that adding a bit to my morning coffee seems like a pretty genius idea!

Paleo Mocha anyone?!

We are entering the final days of this! three more full days to go! I can’t believe it! Although I have to say I think I may keep it going… at least until Thanksgiving… then all bets are off.

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(No) Sugar, (Pumpkin) Spice & Everything Nice… In These Delish Pumpkin Spice Donuts!

We are entering the home stretch of the 21 Day Sugar Detox… compared to week one, week three seems like a breeze. No more headaches, my skin keeps getting clearer, my sleep keeps getting better.

I do have a cold but I think that’s from the fact that I work in very close quarters where my co-workers are sneezing on me about every 30 seconds.

And I can really and truly say my cravings for sugar really just aren’t there. Yes, I still want treats and snacks but the “not sweet treats” fill that “sweet” tooth. I’m a huge creature of habit and this has made me realize how many sweet things I was eating just because it was a routine… even if it was healthy… there are certain things I would eat daily just because I was used to eating them daily and not because I was hungry for it or even wanted it.

And while less than one week from now, this whole “I’m a changed person” mantra may be thrown by the wayside as I’m  elbow deep in a sugar laden pumpkin pie (mmm, pumpkin pie), for now I’m committed to the last days of these 21. And so instead of sugary ooey gooey pumpkin pie, I have not at all sugary Pumpkin Spice Donuts:

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No, these aren’t your Dunkin, Starbucks or Tim Hortons Pumpkin Donuts variety. There is in not a morsel of sugar (clearly), no frosting (hashtag duh) and no artificial pumpkin anything about them. But before you go clicking out of the browser, I promise you these are actually good! (not to mention they don’t contain a days worth of calories in what can be consumed in just a few bites)

I have to admit that even I wasn’t expecting much given the last pumpkin “treat” I tried to make on this detox tasted more like feet (or what I would imagine feet to taste like- can’t say I have much experience there), but these were actually really quite delicious.

They had enough sweetness to taste like a treat (only using one green tipped banana). Dare I say, I would even make these post 21DSD. And for those of you who aren’t convinced, you could add a bit of honey or maple syrup to sweeten them just a tad while still keeping them paleo and refined sugar free.

Ladies and Gents… it’s Pumpkin Donut Time!

First I pre-heated the over to 350 degrees and then added all the “wet” ingredients into a bowl (2 eggs, 1/4 cup pumpkin, 1/4 cup plus 2 tbs full fat coconut milk, 1.5 tsp vanilla, and 1/2 tsp of apple cider vinegar and whisked it all together:

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Then I added 1/2 cup almond flour, 1/4 cup coconut flour, 1/2 tsp of baking soda, 2 tbsp Pumpkin Pie Spice, and 2 tsp cinnamon:

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And mixed it up until it became a well combined dough:

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Next, I greased my donut pan with coconut oil and placed the mix in a plastic bag and snipped off the corner:

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And then squeezed the dough out in a circle until it was about half full:

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I sprinkled each donut with some unsweetened shredded coconut and popped them in the over for 30 minutes:IMG_1304

And when the buzzer went off, they looked like…. this!

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MMM pumpkin donuts (they smelled fantastic):

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Even though the recipe says it makes 6 donuts, I had leftover dough so I put the rest of it in a mini loaf pan too… how cute! If you don’t have a donut pan you could easily make these in mini loaf pans or even cupcake tins:

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And now for the taste test!

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The Boy and I were in agreement that these were delicious! And exactly what we needed to get us through the final week!

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Wednesday Wins: A Day 10 Update and Two Sugar Detox Recipes That Taste Amazing!

Day 10 and I’m getting really into this sugar detox thing.

As a general standards & practices in my normal not detoxing life, I try not to weigh myself on the regular because it’s a mutual hate-hate relationship with that steely plate of judgement. But I weighed myself on day 1 of this detox so that I could get a whole picture on if the benefits would outweigh (quite literally!) the negatives of giving up the white powdery goodness. And although I promised myself I wouldn’t step on the scale during these 21 days, (especially because I really didn’t do this detox with weight loss as my intention),  I woke up this morning thinking “maybe I’m eating too much fat” and convinced myself that I’ve perhaps gained weight while sacrificing the sweet stuff.

Um, hell to the no.

So in a momentary Oh-No-I-Did-Not-Give-Up-Sugar-Just-To-Gain-Fat-By-Eating-Fat  I stepped on the scale and watched the numbers like I was a contestant on the Biggest Loser — minus the tight spandex biker shorts and the commercial break that leaves you hanging.

I held my breath… and then looked down…. and I’ve lost three pounds!

Once again, this Diane chic really knows her stuff. Honestly, I feel full and satisfied by incorporating a healthy amount of healthy fats into my meals and snacks. I do think I am eating too many nuts… but between the weight loss, the clearer skin and the better sleep, the proof is in the (chia seed) pudding that this thing is working!

You know what else is working? This no sugar extravanagza has made The Boy into a chef! It’s like this detox has been his Bar-Mitzvah of cooking.  It’s turned him from a boy who would just plop raw chicken on a baking sheet and bake it as is (gross, plain and dry) to a man who seasons, sautés, makes sauces from scratch and is giving ME pointers for recipes I should try.

So yesterday, he informed me that he made the Chocolate Truffles from the “Not Sweet Treats” section of the 21 Day Sugar Detox cookbook and that they were in his words “delicious!”

And since he is a tough critic and brutally honest, especially when it comes to treats (the smoothies I made us other day were a bust) I knew they had to be good. So last night I whipped them up. The book offers up two options, but I made a hybrid combo with my own little twist and they did not disappoint!

How I made it:
In a bowl I combined 1/4 coconut butter softened and 1/3 cup almond butter, then I added 2 tablespoons of cocoa powder, 1/2 tsp of vanilla, 1 tablespoon of cacao nibs and a few shakes of cinnamon. I mixed it all up and stuck it in the freezer for three minutes. Once they set, I scooped them into little balls and rolled them in unsweetened coconut and stuck them back into the freezer (it made 13 truffles total)

And they looked like this!

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And for the taste test:

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Big fan. Huge. Really satisfying and delicious and the cacao nibs added a nice crunch!

Although you wouldn’t know it from this blog, it’s not just the sweet stuff that is proving to be satisfying. Earlier this week I tried my hand at “Faux-caccia” I love the name and I love the dish…

It’s a few simple ingredients- some minced garlic, eggs, coconut flour, coconut oil, basil, rosemary and oregano!

The dough was a bit hard to work with to get it to be even and not break apart:

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And then… I realized a quarter way through baking that I forgot to put in the oregano… Oopsie!

So I improvised… and by that I mean, I took it out of the oven and smushed some oregano into the dough. Mario Batali does that too, right?!

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Pre-sace it looked like this (and it smelled great!):

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And then I added a sauce made of just tomato paste, water, garlic, salt, pepper and oregano and baked it for ten more minutes and when it came out it looked like this:

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Bellisimo!!

And this was amazing! I made it a second time this week and doubled the sauce the recipe calls for to make it even yummier… and it was. Oh folks, it was gooood.

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“Chocolate” and “Pizza” on a Sugar Detox? Who would have thought?!

Not this girl!

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