Thank you so much for the amazing ourpouring of support and encouragement last week. Your thoughtful words truly comforted me. <3
I especially enjoyed hearing about your favorite family recipes! A few of the mouth-watering treats mentioned included: deviled eggs, veggie curry, enchiladas, baklava, spice cake, Southern tea cakes, sticky rice dumplings, spaghetti bake, chocolate chip cookies, red velvet cake, mac n' cheese, potato rolls...!!! Can you all come cook for me? Our grandmothers sure are/were culinary savvy!
*Wouldn't it be fun to compile a cookbook dedicated in their honor? Hmm...something to think about.*
If you'd asked my opinion about nut butters a year ago, I would have said something like this:
"Peanut butter, peanut butter and more peanut butter, please!"
But times are-a-changing, my friends!
New love: ALMOND, PEANUT & CASHEW BUTTER.
Almond butter may be so 2010, but ALMOND PEANUT & CASHEW BUTTER is where it's at in 2011!
I found this jar of nut butter bliss during a Target shopping adventure with my ex-roomie, Jen, the other night.
I was so excited, I wanted to dip my finger in the jar while we were shopping. Fortunately, throwback boxes of Cinnamon Toast Crunch--my favorite childhood cereal--distracted me enough to prevent me from making a mess in the store.
This is AMAZING. Go by yourself a jar (or two, or ten).
After shoving several spoonfuls into my mouth, I began dreaming about the delicious treats I could make with my new nut butter, and suddenly remembered a recipe I'd clipped in Oxygen Magazine a several months back: Almond Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies.
You may remember that I fell hard for almond butter brownies a few weeks ago. Well, the flourless nut butter baked goods affair continues.This time with Almond, Peanut & Cashew butter.
I ate four cookies fresh from the oven. I don't recommend doing this. These cookies crumble if you don't let them cool for 15 minutes.
The almond butter almond peanut & cashew butter cookies contain no flour. Just nut butter. And chocolate chips. And sucanat. (+ a few other ingredients, of course)
This was a my first time baking with sucanat, so I did a little research:
It turns out that Sucanat is basically pure dried sugar cane juice. Unlike refined and processed white sugar, it retains its molasses content, which accounts for the brown color (and molassesy taste). It can be used as a substitute for brown sugar, however unlike regular brown sugar, sucanat is grainy instead of crystalline. Of all major sugars derived from sugar cane, Sucanat ranks the highest in nutritional value, and contains a smaller proportion of sucrose than white cane sugar.
The sucanat lended a deep, rich, molassassy flavor and golden color to the cookies.
Unfortunately, The typically-trusty Pink Pig didn't ring loud enough when the second batch was ready, so a dozen charred cookies were thrown into the trash. :(
Frozen yogurt + nut butter + cookies definitely made for an indulgent evening. But some days are like that! I can eat healthy, balanced meals tomorrow ; life is too short to not enjoy yummy treats when given the opportunity.
And speaking of balance,it's finally time for me to answer your first "Ask me anything question." Thanks so much for submitting questions! I'll be answering them all over the next month or so.
Q: "Tell me about your workout routine."
A: I rarely discuss fitness, so I'm glad I have the opportunity to share my exercise philosphy with you!
When I first began blogging, I was trying to scale back the amount of time I spent working out, as I'd pretty much married myself to the gym. You can read about that here.
Since then, my views regarding fitness have transformed dramatically! I definitely believe that less is more, and have seen positive changes in my body since adopting a more well-rounded routine ! I 100% believe in taking a rest day, as our bodies need time to heal after rigorous training.
That said, I still LOVE to workout. I love the invigoration I feel during and after a long run; I love the commraderie of a group class (I just started BOSU!!), I love the strength I feel after curling dumbbells; and I love the "me time"--that precious "zone-out" time that allows me to reflect.
However, if workouts cease to be enjoyable, I know that I'm getting burned out. That's when it's time to take a break or switch things up.
Currently, this is what my routine looks like (more or less). :-)
Monday: Elliptical cross trainer: 50 minutes; Ab work: 5 minutes
Tuesday: HIIT Treadmill intervals: 30 minutes; Total body weights: 20 minutes
Wednesday: BOSU class!! (core, cardio and strength): 50 minutes
Thursday: Elliptical cross trainer: 50 minutes; Ab work: 5 minutes
Friday: HIIT Elliptical: 20 minutes; Total body weight workout: 30-40 minutes
Saturday: Whatever I feel like! (gym, run outside, weights)
Sunday: REST (sometimes I do yoga, pilates or take a long walk)
And last but not least...The GIVEAWAY winner!!
The winner is.......
ALLY from Oats and Spice!!
Congrats!! Please e-mail me your address, and I'll send the goodies your way!
Ok, that's all for today...
Oh, wait...one more thing:
Have you tried these?
You probably think I only eat sweets. Ha. Maybe I do!