Well, it’s been 2017 for the majority of a month already!  I’ve decided that 2017 is going to be my best food year yet.  It’s time to get organized!  I’ve started planning out what I’ll be cooking every weekend during the week and buying the groceries ahead of time so I don’t have to think about what to make AND grocery shop the day-of, which can be an energy killer.  It’s been easy to do and has felt freeing.  And it has given me time to make more things!  I’m really excited about it.  I have so many ideas about things to make; this year I’m getting efficient and making them all happen.

 

My other, probably more important goal is to be more intentional in every thing that I do.  I guess the planning of meals goes with that, because it means that my weekend time is well spent (not at the grocery store).  I want to spend free time doing the things I love like cooking, not running extra errands that could have been avoided or figuring out what to do.

 

 

Happy end-of-holidays, everyone!  Who has baked up a storm in the past month?  I certainly have.  I wanted to share the treats I’ve made lately and particularly these melting snowmen cookies.  They take time, but if you break up the cookie baking and cookie decorating into different days, they’re relaxing and fun to make.  And heart-warmingly cute!  I meant to post the recipe earlier since clearly these are Christmas/holiday cookies, but since they’re snowmen I suppose you could make them anytime it’s snowy.  🙂

fresh-fruit-oat-breakfast-cookies-5

 

These breakfast cookies are loaded with bananas, fresh fruit and oats.  In proper breakfast cookie form, they have only nourishing ingredients.  Peanut butter replaces the butter/oil of a traditional cookie and provides some protein, and they are sweetened with honey.  These cookies are completely whole grain and dairy free.  The honey and peanut butter hold the dough together so there’s no need for an egg.

 

easy-cheesy-baked-eggplant-5

 

This breaded baked eggplant with marinara, Greek yogurt/sour cream, fresh basil and Parmesan (or whatever veggies and cheese you have on hand) makes a great weeknight meal.  It requires minimal effort; just slice up one large eggplant into ~3/4″ slices, dip the slices in egg then bread crumbs, bake for 10 minutes, flip and bake for another 10 minutes, add the toppings and bake for 10 minutes more.   Dinner served!

 

Easy Tomato Bisque Soup

 

I love tomato bisque soup.  The creaminess, the tangy tomato, the hint of fresh basil all work together to create a deeply satisfying dish.  It can be a main meal with a little bread and salad on the side, or it can serve as a complement to a grilled cheese sandwich.  This easy tomato bisque recipe comes together in minimal time and with minimal effort since it uses canned crushed tomatoes that don’t need to stew as long.

Chicken soup using homemade, simple, no-waste chicken broth

 

There’s nothing quite like a bowl of brothy chicken soup to warm you up when it’s cold, soothe you when you’re sick, and generally make you feel strong and nourished any time. If you’ve been making homemade soup but it has never tasted quite as amazing as you’d like (like me), here is the solution.  This recipe tastes so good with basically no spices — just a little salt and pepper and a couple of bay leaves for the broth.  It’s proof that simple, good ingredients really don’t need dressing up; they can stand on their own.

 

Homemade Oreo Cookies with Peppermint Frosting

 

Tomorrow is St. Patrick’s Day!  These homemade “Oreos” with peppermint frosting are the perfect treat to bring to work, school or a party to celebrate.  (They’re also the perfect treat any time!)  The cookies are like a dark chocolate version of Oreos.  You can make them crunchy like real Oreos or leave them a bit softer; it’s up to you.  The peppermint frosting is creamy, sweet and refreshing and brings that festive greenness. 🙂