Tuesday, July 22, 2014

What's in my Purse

I really love reading a good what's in my purse/how I organize my makeup/what does my blog notebook look like, etc. Basically anything slightly nosey-type post I'm into it. There's a fascination about peeking into someone else's life and getting a bit of a (literal) snapshot.
So here I have the contents of my purse, all dumped out on this lovely placemat backdrop. I obviously pushed aside the dozens of crumpled receipts, and post-it scrawled lists. No one needs to see those. And we all know they're in there anyways. (can you see my sneaky reflection?)

  • sunglasses - thrifted
  • Maybelline colour whisper in Coral Ambition
  • Avon chap stick with SPF x 2
  • Maybelline Baby Lips 
  • Bobby pins x 2
  • 30 cents change
  • The Board Game Cafe loyalty card (If you're in Vic, check it out!!)
  • my iPod
  • Glasses - Randy Jackson
  • Wallet - Ardene
  • Ballpoint pen
What are the contents of your handbag?

So I actually wrote this post on my phone Friday evening while waiting for my ferry to arrive and take me to Vancouver. Free wifi + a lot of time to kill + Blogger app = score! The magic of the cell phone! Crazy!

Monday, July 21, 2014

Good Morning Monday | 3

All last week I spent on holiday! Not "let's go to Mexico on a holiday", more like, "I have 2 weeks off and I'm going to get everything done that I've been meaning to get done for months!" Type of holiday. Through the week, I did a massive furniture redo (that took me much longer than expected) so expect to see that very soon! If you follow me on Twitter or Instagram you may already have some clues as to what it was.
Mitch and I spent the weekend in Vancouver to see some friends, where we had a mexican fiesta! You bet I brought salsa! There were many pizza stops and two delicious brunches this weekend, my favourite! Check out Slickity Jim's Chew n' Chat. I had the most delicious fig and brie benny!
We spent sunday afternoon travelling back home and then binged on some Lost for the evening.

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Cinnamon and Date Morning Buns

I think I called these Morning Buns for a few reasons. First, cinnamon buns, although we do eat them for breakfast occasionally, we all know thats a terrible thing to do. But Morning buns, whoa! they're meant to be breakfast! Revolutionary.
Second, these buns are made with multigrain flour, that's good for you flour. hearty and filling breakfast treats. (catching, my logic?) Third, these gooey little buns are also made with way less sugar than regular cinnamon buns! Did I mention too, the filling is made from delicious caramelized-sweet dates!? If you don't already know the amazingness that dates possess, you need to give this recipe a go.

These breakfast rolls are far heartier than your average cinnamon bun. Not that any cinnamon bun can truly be "average". The filling holds a rich, salted caramel flavour with a kick of warm cinnamon. And the Multigrain dough gives them a slightly more buscuit-like texture. If your scared by the words "cinnamon" and "bun" in the same sentence let me comfort you by saying right now: No Butter. None. And less than four Tablespoons of sugar in the whole dang recipe. That's probably less than you put in your morning coffee, amiright? Let's make healthy better for you Cinnamon buns!

A little pre-baked goodness.

Ingredients & Recipe
  • 1 1/2 Cups Almond Milk
  • 3 Tablespoons Coconut Oil
  • 3 Tablespoons Brown Sugar
  • A Pinch of Sea Salt
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Brown Sugar
  • 2 1/4 Teaspoons Yeast
  • 1/4 Cup warm water
  • 2 Large eggs
  • 5 Cups Multigrain Flour (white would work as well, for a fluffier, more traditional bun)

  • approximately 20 dates, soaked in water for at least an hour
  • 1/2 cup of the water used to soak the dates
  • sea salt
  • 1 Tablespoon Cinnamon
  • 1 Tbsp Brown sugar (optional)
To make the dough: Warm the milk in a saucepan and add the coconut oil, sugar and salt. Stir until everything is dissolved then remove from heat. You don't want anything to boil just warm enough to let everything mix together.
Dissolve the 1/2 teaspoon of brown sugar in the warm water then add in yeast and let the mix stand for about 10 minutes.
In a very large bowl combine the milk mixture, eggs, and yeast mixture. Add 2 1/2 cups of the flour and beat that for about 7 minutes. With a wooden spoon,mix in the remaining flour 1/2 a cup at a time.
Turn the dough onto a floured surface and knead it by hand until it is smooth. (this took me a long time, and ended up adding in more flour)
Grease the mixing bowl and return the dough to the bowl. Let the dough rise for an hour, covered with a warm damp tea towel, or in a warmer space.

To make the Filling: Blend the soaked dates, along with 1/2 cup of the reserved water, in a food processor until smooth.

To Put it all together: Roll the dough out to a 9x13 inch rectangle and spread your date filling onto the dough. Sprinkle with the cinnamon and an optional sprinkling of brown sugar. Roll the dough, from the longest side, into a log. Grease a large pie pan or 9x13 inch baking pan, and sprinkle the bottom with cinnamon.
Cut the buns into 14 pieces, and place into the greased pan. Let rise for an additional 30 minutes or more. At this point you can preheat the over to 350 F.
 Drizzle or brush the top with additional coconut oil, mixed with date water (or water and vanilla if you've tossed it already) to keep the buns from drying out as they bake. Bake for about 25 minutes or until browning on top.

after, mmmmm.

What's a guilty morning treat you wish could be a liiiiitle bit better for you?

Monday, July 14, 2014

Good Morning Monday | 2

How was everybody's week? The weather here has been absolutely beautiful and I'm spending every minute that I can outside in the sunshine. Lots of lunches on the balcony, evening walks looking at the character homes in our neighbourhood, trips to the beach for slack lining, and sun bathing.

I'm still, even after 6 months of living in our neighbourhood, realizing what a beautiful area we live in. We can walk to two different beaches from our apartment! And there are so many meandering neighbourhood with old homes, beautiful gardens, and cute little coffee shops to walk to; every evening walk is a completly different route still. 
Its been nice to keep it simple yet social this week. Were busy in the nicest way possible. 
What were the highlights from your weekend?

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Sesame & Sunflower Seed Carrot Falafel

This is a recipe that sparked from not wanting to go grocery shopping twice in the same day. Does anybody ever want to do that? But I really wanted something healthy, new, and different to eat. Enter carrot falefels.
I'm not sure how they can really be called falafels considering there's no chick peas in these guys at all... But they're shaped like falafel! And they fit well into pitas!
I had originally wanted a raw lunch (that wasn't a salad, so boring to me lately), but like most unorganized people, I don't have 6 hours to spare or a dehydrator to crisp food for me - so oven it is! 
This recipe is actually (very) heavily adapted from a recipe in the book Choosing Raw, a link to the original recipe can be found here. Seeing as a I had very few of the recipe's ingredients (I basically got as far as "I have carrots. I need to use them up.") this was a bit of a (successful!) adventure.

Ingredients & Recipe
makes about 12-15 falafels
  • 1/4 cup of sesame seeds
  • 1/4 cup sunflower seeds
  • 1/2 cup tahini 
  • 1 1/2 cups of finely grated carrot
  • 2 Tablespoons of onion, finely chopped
  • 2 teaspoons of apple cider vinegar
  • 2 Tablespoons of chopped pecans
  • 1/4 teaspoon cumin spice
  • pinch of salt
  • 1/4 to 1/3 cup water
  • 1/4 cup fresh parsley
  • 2 Tablespoons chopped green onion or chive
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
Pulse sesame seeds, sunflower seeds and tahini in food processor until it all forms one paste. Add grated carrot, onion, apple cider vinegar, pecans, cumin, salt and some of the water. Mix on low, stopping to scrape the sides as needed, until it gets as smooth as you think it will get. If the mix is too crumbly to deal with, add in water a bit at a time until you are satisfied.
Add the fresh parsley and chives and pulse until well combined.
Form the dough into small balls or patties and place on a lightly greased or parchment paper-lined baking sheet. bake for about 7 minutes, then flip and cook for another 5 or so. You don't want any of them too brown.
Serve in pitas, in salads, in lettuce wraps, or as a side. They're surprisingly versatile! I garnished mine with green onion, sesame seeds, avocado and chipotle dressing - flavour for days!
These will keep for 4 days in the fridge, or can be frozen raw and cooked at a later date.

If you make these please let me know know they turned out, or how you made them your own!
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