Mini Black Forest Cakes (Happy Birthday Brahms!)

Dessert, Food, Music | May 7, 2015 | By

For some light ambiance – click play. 🙂 ^^^^^^

I have to confess that there’s something I’ve been hiding from you all. Well, not exactly “hiding,” per say – my friends know about it. But people can be judgy, so I’m kiiiinda going out on a limb here by telling you this. And if you didn’t think I was a mega nerd already, this will probably seal the deal for you. OK, ready? Hold on. DEEP BREATHS EVERYONE.

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PB&J Donuts

Donuts are my kryptonite. There are very few things in this world that make me forget that I have self control, and donuts are pretty much all of them.

I usually avoid them for this reason, but while on Spring break earlier this month visiting my cousins in North Carolina, I decided to treat myself to a toasted amaretto donut. Yes, it was as good as it sounds. And in those few, all-too-short minutes of edible bliss, I fell head-over-heels. Of course, the honeymoon was short lived, because I came sugar-crashing back to reality almost instantly. But it was worth it.

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Gooey Cookie Pie for One (Vegan!)

I have a confession to make… I’m boycotting Valentine’s Day. *cue dramatic gasp*

If you’ve been following my blog for a while, you may even recall last Valentine’s Day, when I officially dubbed February 14th  “Violin-tine’s Day.”  (Note to self: Totally making that more of a thing again this year.)

 

 

Now, I know what you’re probably thinking. Sarah, you’re just a crotchety ol’ Scrooge because you’re single on Valentine’s Day. Well, OK, that last part might -technically- be true. In reality though, I’m actually a huge romantic. I’m a total sucker for the cheesiest things! Eating my food and telling me I’m pretty usually does the trick too, though. I’m not difficult to please. (Edit: I can actually be pretty difficult to please. Maybe that’s why I’m single on Valentine’s Day…)

 

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For me though, true romance is unconditional, and there’s something about having a holiday specifically for it that just feels forced. You know wha’m sayin’? I truly believe that showing someone else how much you care should be an all-the-time thing, and needs no occasion. Regardless of how you show it, every day should be like Valentine’s day.

 

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Not to mention, the holiday does kind of put a lot of undue pressure on single folk. I have friends who really dread Valentine’s Day, and THAT makes me sad more than anything. I also get it, because I used to feel the same way.

So that’s why I say, celebrate self-love this Valentine’s Day! Regardless of who you choose to date, marry, etc., only you get to spend your whole life with you. Just like only you get to eat this cookie pie.

 

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Aaaand so, that was my long winded way of explaining why I made you a recipe for one. And it is a reallllly good one. This is the gooiest cookie pie ever, and you’ll never know it’s egg and dairy free.

So I say, make and eat a whole freakin’ cookie pie by yourself this Valentine’s Day (or, any day). Then top it with some dairy-free ice cream, because why the heck not. This cookie pie will be there waiting just for you, because you deserve it. Also, because it’s vegan (and gluten free), that pretty much means it’s healthy by default. Right? Usually wrong. But today, right.

 

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And if you are planning to spend your Valentine’s Day with someone special, you could just as easily double the recipe. Why split a dessert when you can each have your own? Everybody’s happy, and nobody has to fight over who gets to eat what part or who gets the last bite. See? I’m saving relationships everywhere.

 

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Gooey Cookie Pie for One (Vegan)
Serves 1
Because you deserve a dessert all to yourself.
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Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
15 min
Total Time
20 min
Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
15 min
Total Time
20 min
Ingredients
  1. 1/3 cup oat flour
  2. 1/8 tsp. kosher salt
  3. 2 Tbs. dairy free chocolate chips
  4. 1 Tbs. chopped pecans
  5. 1/4 cup unsweetened applesauce
  6. 1 Tbs. pure maple syrup
  7. 1/4 tsp. vanilla extract
  8. 1/2 Tbs. melted coconut oil
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350˚F.
  2. Combine flour, salt, pecans, and chocolate chips in a medium bowl.
  3. In a separate bowl, combine applesauce, maple syrup, vanilla, and coconut oil.
  4. Mix wet ingredients into flour mixture.
  5. Grease a wide, shallow ramekin. Pour batter into ramekin and bake for about 15-20 minutes, or until set in the center.
  6. Serve with a small scoop of dairy-free ice cream of your choice, if desired. (And trust me... You desire.)
The Hungry Musician http://thehungrymusician.com/

Maple Apple Walnut Cinnamon Rolls

Somebody please stop me from eating all of these immediately.

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I made these last night, and as of the exact moment I began writing this post (12:32 AM) I had already eaten two of them.

Okay, I had eaten three. But I didn’t eat enough dinner last night. ALSO, I hadn’t yet photographed them, so I had to get rid of all the ugly ones. See? It’s ok. I was doing you a favor… Yeahhh.1

I have been dying to make a healthy version of cinnamon rolls since birth, basically. I LOVE cinnamon rolls. In college, one of my roommates would make those amazingly delicious and crazy easy cinnamon-rolls-in-a-tube for special occasions. You know, the ones with the dough that you have to wear protective eyewear to open because the package is GOING to explode? Yeah, you know. SO good.

Unfortunately, those don’t exactly fit into an unprocessed lifestyle, and my goal is to make everything as delicious as possible while also using “real-food” ingredients. And so, these were born. And they are STILL gooey as all heck. 

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I threw some apples into the mix, because I’m still a li’l bit stuck in autumn and am not loving this weird transition into winter. It has been raining like crazy in NYC for the past few days, but it has been FREEZING. It might as well be snowing. Except that it’s not, so instead of making snowmen in the park and getting days off from school, I’m getting soaked by tsunamis of cold taxi puddle water on my way to class. Do I look amused to you? (Imagine that you can see me, and that I look unamused.) The change in seasons is always a weird time on the East Coast, but cinnamon rolls are for all the time. So, let’s just call these seasonal and be done with it.

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Since I didn’t want to use powdered sugar, these do not have your typical “icing,” but they are soaked with a maple syrup glaze, which I think is probably the next best thing. They’re SO delicious warm, with a piping hot cup of coffee or tea on the side. Also, when I was looking for recipe inspiration, I saw that Chocolate Covered Katie put raspberry jam IN her cinnamon rolls. So, obviously, I put some raspberry jam on a warmed up roll for breakfast, and my life was changed. Like, really forever.

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The fact that I have a pan and a half of these in my kitchen is really dangerous. Anybody want to help take some of them off my hands?

I’m kidding. Don’t. I want all of them. <3

Maple Apple Walnut Cinnamon Rolls
Yields 16
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Prep Time
1 hr 20 min
Cook Time
20 min
Prep Time
1 hr 20 min
Cook Time
20 min
Dough
  1. 1/2 cup warm water
  2. 1 package (1/4 oz.) instant yeast
  3. 1 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk, almost boiled
  4. 1/3 cup coconut oil
  5. 1/4 cup honey
  6. 1 tsp. salt
  7. 1 egg
  8. 2 c. Whole Wheat Pastry Flour
  9. 2 c. Whole Wheat Graham Flour (I use Bob's Red Mill)
Filling
  1. 1 Honeycrisp or Gala apple, peeled and chopped
  2. 1/3 cup walnuts
  3. 1 tbs. cinnamon
  4. 2 tbs. coconut sugar
  5. 1 tbs. honey
  6. 3 tbs. melted coconut oil
Glaze
  1. 2 tbs. melted coconut oil
  2. 1/4 cup maple syrup
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350˚F.
  2. Dissolve yeast in warm water.
  3. In a saucepan, heat almond milk on medium heat until almost boiling. Reduce heat and add coconut oil and honey, whisking until melted. Remove from heat and transfer contents to a large bowl - let cool until a bit warmer than room temperature (so that the coconut oil is still a liquid)
  4. Once cooled, whisk in yeast slurry, egg, and salt.
  5. In a separate bowl, combine flours.
  6. Slowly add flour to wet ingredients until completely combined and dough can be handled. Extra flour may be added. Knead dough for a few minutes with floured hands.
  7. Let sit in a warm place to double in size, about 1 hour.
  8. Combine filling ingredients in a food processor and pulse until a coarse paste forms.
  9. Once dough has risen, punch it down and roll out on a floured surface until about 1/4 inch thick.
  10. Spread filling evenly over dough.
  11. Roll the long end of the dough inward to create a log.
  12. Using a very sharp knife, cut into 16 even slices.
  13. Arrange slices together into two greased cake pans.
  14. Bake for about 15-20 minutes, or until golden brown.
  15. Whisk together glaze ingredients and drizzle evenly over warm rolls.
Adapted from Chocolate Covered Katie
The Hungry Musician http://thehungrymusician.com/

Pumpkin Spice Noodle Kugel (Dairy Free)

Dessert, Food, Recipes, Sides | October 10, 2014 | By

“By posting this recipe I am entering a recipe contest sponsored by the National Pasta Association and am eligible to win prizes associated with the contest. I was not compensated for my time.”

As a born-and-raised member of a Reform Jewish family, I know how and what it’s like to consistently leave family events in pants that are suddenly 3 sizes smaller. Especially after Yom Kippur, which was last weekend. 

For those unfamiliar with this Jewish holiday, it’s the “Day of Atonement.” We fast for 24 hours to repent, and then consume two days’ worth of calories once the sun sets and the day is officially over. I never QUITE understood that. I mean, doesn’t it kind of defeat the logic of having just said you’re sorry for every bad thing you did during the year, to then go and eat ALL the things?  Also, nowhere in the Torah is it written that “you shall each consume one too many sesame bagels with whitefish salad, and half of a brisket.” But, overeating tends to be one of our greatest (?) talents, and this tradition is certainly no exception! And of course, any occasion to eat all together as a family is also one to celebrate (translation: …overeat).

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When I heard that this month’s sponsored contest for the Recipe Redux was being hosted by The National Pasta Association, I think “excited” was an understatement. Everyone loves pasta – literally. I can’t think of anyone who doesn’t. I personally love pasta, because you can do SO much with it. It’s quick, easy, versatile, and helps you get in your carbs! I like carbs.

It’s apparently National Pasta Month this month, and I can’t think of a better way to celebrate than by eating a ton of pasta. So, when my mom called to tell me we would be hosting this year’s break-fast and she wanted me to cook, I knew exactly what to do.

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Noodle kugel is one of my favorite Jewish cultural dishes of all time. It’s a casserole type of thing made with egg noodles, eggs, and usually cream or cheese with a buttery streuselesque topping. Basically, a custardy, egg noodle crumble, which can be sweet OR savory. Awesome, right? Now, we’re trying to thin things out a little bit, so some exchanges had to be made, but the recipe still kept ALL of its flavor. It was indeed quite awesome.

For this dish, I decided to go into FULL ON yoga-pants-and-Uggs-wearing, top-knot-sporting Autumnophile mode. You guessed it: Pumpkin Spice. It’s like, so Fall, I legit can’t even. What’s better than pumpkin, spices, pasta, and a flaky, nutty, golden crust? WITH RAISINS THAT HAVE BEEN COOKED IN BOOZE SPRINKLED ALL THROUGHOUT? …How about all of those things in a dish that you can feel good about?

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If it were acceptable to hug a kugel, I would hug this one. If it were acceptable to marry a kugel, I would marry this one. (Take note scruffy Jewish doctors, circa 6’0″ – you have some competition.)

 

Pumpkin Spice Noodle Kugel
Serves 16
A healthier twist on a classic Jewish dish!
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Prep Time
30 min
Cook Time
45 min
Total Time
1 hr 15 min
Prep Time
30 min
Cook Time
45 min
Total Time
1 hr 15 min
Ingredients
  1. 1 lb. whole wheat egg noodles, cooked
  2. --
  3. 3/4 cup red wine
  4. 3/4 cup raisins
  5. 1/2 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
  6. 1/8 tsp. nutmeg
  7. 3/4 tsp. cinnamon
  8. --
  9. 1 cup pumpkin purée
  10. 1/4 cup coconut oil, melted
  11. 1/3 cup coconut cream*
  12. 1/3 cup honey
  13. 6 eggs (opt. 3 eggs + 6 whites)
  14. 1 + 1/2 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
  15. 1 tsp. cinnamon
  16. --
  17. 2 cups organic corn flake cereal
  18. 1/4 cup walnuts, chopped
  19. 1/4 cup coconut oil, melted
  20. 1/4 - 1/3 cup honey
  21. Cinnamon to taste
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350˚F.
  2. Cook egg noodles according to package directions. Drain completely and let dry.
  3. While noodles are cooking, bring wine, raisins, and spices to a simmer in a large saucepan. Lower heat, and stir occasionally until wine is thick, syrupy, and completely reduced. Remove from heat.
  4. Combine pumpkin and coconut oil and whisk to combine.**
  5. Stir coconut cream, honey, eggs, and spices into pumpkin mixture.
  6. Add raisins and noodles to pumpkin mixture and toss to coat.
  7. In a separate bowl, combine the corn flakes, walnuts, honey, and coconut oil.
  8. Grease a large, shallow casserole dish with coconut oil or nonstick spray. Add pumpkin noodle mixture to the dish, and sprinkle the corn flake topping evenly over the noodles. Bake for about 35-45 minutes, or until the mixture is totally set and the topping is golden brown.
Notes
  1. *To get coconut cream, leave a can of full fat coconut milk in the fridge overnight to separate. The cream is the solid part.
  2. **Make sure your pumpkin puree is at room temperature before adding the coconut oil, or else the melted oil may solidify!
Adapted from Jenessa's Dinners / Meal and a Spiel
Adapted from Jenessa's Dinners / Meal and a Spiel
The Hungry Musician http://thehungrymusician.com/