5 Years

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Hard to believe it's been 5 years. 5 years since Take A Bite staked it's claim in the interweb. I really can't beleive it. 

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This little website has brought me the coolest experiences, some incredible friends, delicious eats, ups, downs, all-arounds. I can't thank you enough for reading my blog posts, for making my recipes, for snapchatting and texting me pictures labeled #takeabite. It's incredible to think that what started out of the dining room of the OU Kappa house has transformed itself into this. Whatever this may be. 

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Take A Bite Quick Facts:

I've written 247 Bites of My Life Posts with another on the way this Monday. 

I've posted 200+ recipe posts. 

This post still remains as my most popular read post, thinking it is much due for an update, seeing as I wrote it 4 years ago. 

These bad boys have made their way to my second most popular post, just as they should. I feel like they are the mascot of TAB. 

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You can see how TAB has evolved by reading my 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 4th birthday posts. 

And it wouldn't be a blog birthday/blogiversary without some Birthday Toast. The stupid easy recipe is linked here

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Thank you for reading friends. It means the world. Here's to 5 more!

Annie

Goodbye To You

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Michelle Branch said it best when she sang, "Goodbye to you, Goodbye to everything that I knew." Goodbye Take A Bite. It's been a stellar 5 years in this corner of the internet with you.

Today is my last day posting at Take A Bite. It took some serious thought and something I have gone back and forth on, then back and forth again, but I'm finally at peace with my decision to close the door on my little food blog.  

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I've loved sharing recipes, bites of my life and the occasional fashion inspo post, but after five years I'm saying goodbye to you. 

I hope you understand. I hope you enjoyed the past few years. I hope you were able to make a couple of my recipes. I hope you still come back and visit (the site isn't going anywhere despite my posting coming to a halt). I hope you still following my life happenings on social media. I hope you keep on taking bites.

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And I hope you aren't too distracted with all the Easter shenanigans to remember that it is also April 1st.  

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Happy April Fool's Day! TAB ain't going no where!! ;) 

Annie 

photos by KGC Photography

 

BB Weekend

Meet my friend Molly. She's my blogger bestie, soul sister, sweet to my savory and this past weekend, my getaway gal. Molly and I met on the internet. Laugh to yourself for a second because I am too. It wasn't in a creepy dating site kind of way, but that's what is so cool about the blog world. The people I have met and discovered since starting Take A Bite has made it so worthwhile. Molly and I found each other through the crazy world wide web and instantly new we could be friends. Our amount of similarities is numerous and the way our brain works is almost telepathic.  

We were strictly internet friends for a while, but claimed each other as blogger besties. Always commenting on posts, sharing blog tips, and swapping ideas. Same age, attended rival schools, are in the same sorority, and have a handful of mutual friends, we knew we would meet up eventually. So far we have caught up at Austin City Limits and OU vs. Texas. This past weekend we met halfway between our two cities. I drove down from Oklahoma City and Molly bussed it up from Houston, to meet in Dallas. 

It was a quicky 24 hours, but we packed in loads of blogger bestie goodness. First stop was at Flea Style that just so happened to be taking place this weekend. Honestly...it was slightly underwhelming, but it was fun going booth to booth checking out the specialty food goods, catchy greeting cards, whimsical home goods and vintage clothes. 

Post Flea Market, I was about to eat my arm. We headed to the Knox Henderson area for lunch. We left it up to wherever the wind blew us and we ended up with rose` and greek noshes from Ziziki's. We were those horribly obnoxious people hovering over our tables and moving dinnerware around to get the perfect shot all weekend. Although, it was nice to not be judged for my obsessive foodgramming... 

After lunch and more shopping a little caffeine was needed. Vanilla lavender lattes from Sip Stir fit the bill. Again with the food pics. I'll let you in on a little secret (this is totally posed), but shhhh don't tell the other bloggers. 

Drinks and dinner were at HG Sply Co. which doubles as my new favorite Dallas restaurant.  

A little salmon curry bowl for me and the cauliflower grit bowl with a quinoa patty for Molls.

The weekend was idyllic, with the addition of a few spaz moments as we called them. A Mega Bus "experience", a slightly dazed shopkeeper, a few wreckless uber drivers, a waiter switcheroo and the icing on the cake...getting my car towed. Tip: don't park in a fire line. This seems simple, but take my advice. I'm now a pro at "regaining your vehicle after getting it impounded." Memories, ya know?

More lattes (the best too might I add) and my favorite meal from Ascension Coffee, made for the last stop on our 24 hour excursion. So much real talk, blog talk, job talk and life talk over the weekend. Thank you internet for helping me find one of my besties! If you haven't already, take a peek at Molly's blog. She brings the words and intellect, while I just bring the food. 

Annie

Live

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Live from Oklahoma City, it's my new site design!!!!! Oh buddy this is a long time coming and I can't believe it finally happened. Isn't she lovely, isn't she wonderful? My sweet little DIY photoshop site I put together 2 years ago was in need of a little updating. 

Let's go through some new features and some of my favorite parts of the site. The Recipe Box feature in the right sidebar, so cute, right? All my recipes neatly categorized with themed pictures to organize them. The About page too, all my favorite things in one place. How great is the Instagram widget in the footer of the site? And finally make sure to subscribe via email (found in the right sidebar) to get Take A Bite sent straight to your inbox. I'm using a new service now that will make email posts look much prettier!

Last summer I started doing research on switching from blogger to a new hosting site. I would do research then realized it was to hard, then a few months later I'd do it again and realize it was too hard, then so on and so on. With 400+ posts I wasn't about to put 2.5 years of work on the line with the easy chance I would mistakenly delete it all somehow in the process. This summer I did a little more research and found blogging guru Bobbi, and realized with her help, it wouldn't be so hard to switch from Blogger to Squarespace. After some consultation with Peyton and Madison and hearing how much they have loved their Squarespace site I knew it was time to take the plunge.

Peyton and Madison are angels and took the ropes on all the design work. They took ideas I didn't even know I had and turned them into all of this! They are serious design angels. 

Huge kudos to Bobbi from Ready to Blog for taking all the techie ropes and peacefully transferring all my years of work to this beautiful new site. Ditto to Peyton and Madison for creating all design aspects and making the site look better than I could have wished, as well as to Peyton for being my Squarespace help center! She has an answer to all of my questions.

Stop in, stay a while, take a bite and enjoy!

  Annie  

Guest Post: Keen for Quinoa

I'm handing the ropes over to my foodie friend and sorority sister Noel today! She is a foodgrammer, loves to cook and like myself, obsesses over food. She makes me drool at everything she posts on her Instagram, so I asked her to come up with a recipe to share on Take A Bite! 

Hey guys, Noel here. I am a simple food lover. When I go to bed at night, I plan my breakfast. When I eat my breakfast, I plan my afternoon snack/ lunch. But I am thinking about my dinner ALL day. While I currently have no food blog, I have a daily struggle on whether to start one. You can, however, find me on Instagram--->@food_onmy_mind

I am 100%, without a doubt, keen for quinoa! I try to incorporate it into every meal, breakfast, lunch or dinner.  When Annie asked me to do a guest post, I had no clue what recipe I would give her.  But obviously I wanted to do something quinoa! However, a typical quinoa meal for me consists of cooking the quinoa separately and topping it with something or other.  So I wanted to make something where the quinoa and whatever else I added to it was one, single entity.  Annie and I tossed around ideas and we settled on Quinoa Avocado Black Bean Burgers!

Yes, all that goodness was put into one, single (vegetarian) entity.  I had made black bean burgers before, and had never been successful so I was nervous to test these babies out.  However, these particular BBB’s were made with special tender, love, and care (and I have since gained a food processor, which helped, A LOT).  

I invited a few friends to join me in taste testing and for the first time in my black bean burger career, I was successful.  I did learn that my original recipe was a bit spicy (I love spicy as much as I love quinoa), so the one you’ll find below has been modified to a lower spice level.

Now, I was really back and forth on what to put on my BBB.  So naturally, I made two combinations of toppings and ate half of each burger. 

Burger 1:  Dijon mustard, feta cheese, heirloom tomato, and alfalfa sprouts.

Burger 2:  Spicy mayonnaise (homemade), blue cheese, heirloom tomato, and spinach.

For those of you who are spice maniacs, like me, burger 2 is for you.  It was spicy let me tell you!  I will admit though, burger 1 was my favorite.  The combination of feta and alfalfa sprouts with the BBB was mouth watering.  I even made it into a salad the next night.

Black Bean Burgers
yields 6 burger patties

Ingredients:
2 cans black beans, rinsed
1 cup cooked quinoa
1 avocado, cubed
1 shallot, diced
2 tsp. ground cumin
½ tsp. cayenne
½ tsp. smoked Paprika
1 tsp. hot sauce of choice
1 egg white
zest and juice of lime
salt and pepper
*1/2 cup of cilantro would also be a great addition

Directions:
Reserve 1/2 cup black beans and set aside.

Add the remaining beans, shallot, spices, lime zest, juice and hot sauce into the bowl of a food processor, fit with a steel blade. Process until the mixture is the texture of a very chunky puree. Transfer this mixture to a mixing bowl. Add the remaining beans, avocado, cooked quinoa and egg white and stir together. (Turn so not to mush avocado) *If adding cilantro, do it at this step.

Shape the mixture into 6 patties and chill in the fridge for at least 1/2 an hour, or more.  Make sure patties are thin, so that they cook through. Heat a skillet over medium heat and add the patties to the pan. Cook them until browned, about 3-5 minutes per side. Serve on salad, with a bun and toppings, or in lettuce wraps/pocket bread.

Recommended toppings:
Tomato
(Extra) avocado
Raw onion or sautéed white onion
Alfalfa sprouts
Arugula, spinach
Feta, blue cheese, Parmesan
Spicy mayonnaise
Dijon mustard
Salsa
Fried egg

Happy reading and happy eating!

Noel