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.
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.
Somebody please stop me from eating all of these immediately.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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
- 1/2 cup warm water
- 1 package (1/4 oz.) instant yeast
- 1 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk, almost boiled
- 1/3 cup coconut oil
- 1/4 cup honey
- 1 tsp. salt
- 1 egg
- 2 c. Whole Wheat Pastry Flour
- 2 c. Whole Wheat Graham Flour (I use Bob's Red Mill)
- 1 Honeycrisp or Gala apple, peeled and chopped
- 1/3 cup walnuts
- 1 tbs. cinnamon
- 2 tbs. coconut sugar
- 1 tbs. honey
- 3 tbs. melted coconut oil
- 2 tbs. melted coconut oil
- 1/4 cup maple syrup
- Preheat oven to 350˚F.
- Dissolve yeast in warm water.
- 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)
- Once cooled, whisk in yeast slurry, egg, and salt.
- In a separate bowl, combine flours.
- 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.
- Let sit in a warm place to double in size, about 1 hour.
- Combine filling ingredients in a food processor and pulse until a coarse paste forms.
- Once dough has risen, punch it down and roll out on a floured surface until about 1/4 inch thick.
- Spread filling evenly over dough.
- Roll the long end of the dough inward to create a log.
- Using a very sharp knife, cut into 16 even slices.
- Arrange slices together into two greased cake pans.
- Bake for about 15-20 minutes, or until golden brown.
- Whisk together glaze ingredients and drizzle evenly over warm rolls.
“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).
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.
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?
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.)
- 1 lb. whole wheat egg noodles, cooked
- 3/4 cup red wine
- 3/4 cup raisins
- 1/2 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
- 1/8 tsp. nutmeg
- 3/4 tsp. cinnamon
- 1 cup pumpkin purée
- 1/4 cup coconut oil, melted
- 1/3 cup coconut cream*
- 1/3 cup honey
- 6 eggs (opt. 3 eggs + 6 whites)
- 1 + 1/2 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
- 1 tsp. cinnamon
- 2 cups organic corn flake cereal
- 1/4 cup walnuts, chopped
- 1/4 cup coconut oil, melted
- 1/4 - 1/3 cup honey
- Cinnamon to taste
- Preheat oven to 350˚F.
- Cook egg noodles according to package directions. Drain completely and let dry.
- 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.
- Combine pumpkin and coconut oil and whisk to combine.**
- Stir coconut cream, honey, eggs, and spices into pumpkin mixture.
- Add raisins and noodles to pumpkin mixture and toss to coat.
- In a separate bowl, combine the corn flakes, walnuts, honey, and coconut oil.
- 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.
- *To get coconut cream, leave a can of full fat coconut milk in the fridge overnight to separate. The cream is the solid part.
- **Make sure your pumpkin puree is at room temperature before adding the coconut oil, or else the melted oil may solidify!