Bites of My Life

Last week my parent's jetted off to SoCal (JELLY) and I stayed back to make sure their house didn't go up in flames. It didn't, so I think I did okay. I felt like I was on a mini vacation getting to pack up a bag and relocate living quarters for the week. Despite waking up in their dreamy abode, my patience was tested with their attention seeking puppy. We were both pushed to the limit, but we made it out alive! Visits from close friends and the addition of lot's of rose` made my puppy patience subside a bit. 

The last week/weekend of August was a great one. Wine nights, a going away party, CPA celebrations, a bridal shower and banana bread baking rounded it out. Now it's almost September. HOW?

-Matcha Monday.
-Bites alongside Bon Appetit page views.
-If you didn't know, dates are nature's candy. So sweet and sinful, add some crunchy AB on top and your sweet tooth is cured.
-So much love for last week's recipe. Turns out I'm not the only one who loves sweet potatoes and figs!
-#GabetheBabe quickly turned into #GabetheMenace when I got put in charge of him.
-While house sitting for my parents, I took the time to dig through my mom's old family recipes. These cream cheese walnut brownies reminded me of an after school 4th grade snack!
-Friday's are made for best friends, rose, and epic charcuterie boards.
-This breakfast. 1/4 avocado, 2 scrambled eggs with spinach, harissa sauce all over a pile of spinach.
-SB can final return to reality post CPA mayhem! 
-Bridal shower bites.
-My bridey to be! So much fun getting to shower you!
-Sister got her gallbladder taken out over the weekend. When I asked her if she needed anything, she said the only thing she was craving was banana bread. Overripe bananas already in the freezer to the rescue! Whipped up a late night batch of my banana bread (with cinnamon added this time)!

Annie

Roasted Sweet Potatoes & Figs

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We all know I love figs. I also have a mad crush on sweet potatoes. I dreamt up this recipe while trying to come up with as many was as I could to include figs in a recipe. I turned to the world wide web for more inspo and it seems that someone beat me to the chase. Not just anyone, but the great Yotam Ottolenghi (Yo-TAm Oh-toe-LEng-he) of Plenty, Jerusalem and more. We are big Jerusalem fans in my family. Thank you for that Claire and Mike. 

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Roasted sweet potatoes are such a staple. Throw my favorite fruit with it and you have an insane side dish. So easy, but impressive. Just what I'm about. 

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Roasted Sweet Potatoes with Figs adapted from Jerusalem 
yields 3-4 servings

Ingredients:
2 large or 3 medium sweet potatoes
2 Tbsp. olive oil
salt and pepper
red pepper flakes (optional) 
4 figs, stems removed and quartered
2 green onions, whtie and green part sliced on an angle
2 Tbsp. balsamic vinegar

Directions:
Preheat your oven or toaster oven to 475 degrees. (I've been using my toaster oven like crazy in this summer heat to avoid heating my whole house and to avoid an extreme electricity bill).

Slice your sweet potatoes into wedges. Slice in half lengthwise, then in half again, and then again, so you get 8 wedges from one potato. Place the wedges on a roasting sheet and toss with olive oil, salt and pepper and a sprinkle of red pepper flakes.  Roast for 20-25 minutes, flipping them halfway through. 

When your potatoes are almost done, it's time to start making the balsamic reduction. In a small sauce pan, bring the balsamic vinegar to a boil. Reduce the heat and let simmer for 2 to 4 minutes. The balsamic with thicken. You will know when it easily coats the back of a spoon. If it gets too thick you can add a few drops of water to thin it out. 

Arrange the potato wedges and fresh figs on a platter.  Sprinkle over green onions and drizzle with the balsamic reduction. 

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Annie

Sweet Potachos

I ate the whole pan. I thought I would just throw that out there at the beginning to give you a pre-cursor for how amaze these are. I'll also let you know that I thought these would be a huge fail, but they blew my expectations out of the water. Step aside tortilla chips, sweet potatoes just upped you.

Veggie chips can be a little tricky so I did my research to give you the best tips! Cutting your sweet potatoes super thin is key to get them to crisp up and hold all of your toppings. A mandoline makes it so easy, but if you don't have one just do your best to cut them as thin as possible. I'm slightly obsessed with my new mandoline (I got this one from Kuhn Rikon), and it is the main reason I came up with this dish.   I've been looking for any kind of veggie I can slice up thin. I'm weird. 

Tips:
-slice super thin
-bake on foil lined baking sheets
-coat the foil with oil, toss the sweet potatoes in oil too
-wait to salt until they are done baking
-let them finishing crisping with the oven door propped open and the oven turned off
-if some burn a little, that's even better (in my opinion)!!

Sweet Potato Nachos
serves 1-2 depending on how hungry you are

Ingredients:
1 medium sized sweet potato, thinly sliced
olive oil
sea salt
1/2 cup Mexican blend cheese
1/2 avocado, diced
1/2 cup leftover carnitas meat ;)
red onion, cilantro, plain greek yogurt, salsa

Directions:
Preheat your oven to 325 degrees. Line 2-3 baking sheets with foil. Pour about 1-2 Tbsp. of olive oil on to each foil lined sheet. Use your hands to spread it around and cover the whole surface.

Using a mandoline or a really sharp knife, thinly slice your sweet potato. Place in a bowl and toss with another tablespoon of oil. Place each piece of sweet potato on a cookie sheet. Make sure they don't overlap or touch. Place all of the cookie sheets in the oven on separate shelves. Bake for 15 minutes, rotating which pan is on top after 8 minutes. Cook the last 7 minutes. Pull the sheets out and flip over all of your sweet potato chips. Sprinkle with a little bit of salt then place back in the oven. Turn off the oven and crack open the door. Let the chips dry out for about 20 minutes. 

Once your chips are crispy, pull them out and load onto a small baking sheet. I used my toaster oven because it is small and perfect for one batch of nachos. Layer the chips in an even layer, then sprinkle on half of the cheese. Top with the carnitas meat and then the rest of the cheese. Broil for about 5-10 minutes until your cheese is melting. Pull out and top with diced red onion, cilantro, avocado, salsa and plain greek yogurt as a sour cream replacement. 

Snap pictures of these to your friends and make them really jealous. 

My roommate took one bite, and said "ya, you need to make those a lot." I have another sweet potato in my pantry just waiting to be mandolined and made into sweet potatchos. 

Annie

Bites of My Life

Hello food coma. Holy cow there is still so much spinach artichoke, queso, mexican sweat (don't ask) and buffalo chicken dip just chilling in my tummy post Super Bowl snacking. Oh and cookie butter popcorn, chocolate chip cookies and a Hickory Farms meat and cheese board. Do I regret it? no. Does my body regret it? yes. But one can never regret an event where food is the MVP. 

Last week was nice. An easy ease into a new month. New recipes got posted, a new grocery store in the neighborhood opened (I'm a sucker for a good grocery store) and Mr. Groudhog didn't see his shadow, so I'm happily looking forward to spring coming a bit sooner. 

-I love putting warm oatmeal in an almost empty jar of AB, but this plastic Barney Butter container couldn't quite handle the heat.
-Loving power balls for a post-early morning workout snack before I'm ready for breakfast. Posted the whole recipe for these Pecan Spice Power Balls on instagram.
-An epic clean out the fridge meal. Grated sweet potatoes hash with baked eggs and avo.
-CCC recipe round 4!
-Cookie Butter Popcorn is my everything right now. It was a hit at my Super Bowl Party, but is also perfect for any holiday just switch up the sprinkles.
-Can't wait to try the Blue Hill beet yogurt I brought home from Uptown Grocery. Most turned their nose, but I'm all about the weird flavors. Sweet potato and butternut squash sound so good too, but I think I'll pass on tomato and parsnip.
-Weekend breakfasts are a little unbeatable. AB toast with bluebs and hemp hearts with a soft boiled egg that turned out hard boiled.
-Crock pot spinach and artichoke dip was my contribution to the Super Bowl feast. 
-Stay tuned for a second post coming later today. I have a special surprise with this one you won't want to miss. 

Annie

Baked Egg Sweet Potato

A quick recipe post because I couldn't wait to share it! I am lucky enough to work pretty close to home, so I love when I have the chance to run home for lunch instead of shoveling in a sub-par salad at my desk. 

I've had this image of an egg baked in a sweet potato floating around in my pool of recipe ideas for a while. Yesterday I was able to sneak home for lunch and finally got around to making it. It's the same idea as baking an egg in an avocado.

A little coconut butter, salt and pepper then a runny baked egg make this the most satisfying lunch. If really helped me get over the mid day hump of hump day.

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Baked Egg Sweet Potato

Ingredients: 
1 sweet potato
1 egg
coconut oil
salt
pepper
red pepper flakes

Directions:
Cook your sweet potato to your desire. I like wrapping it in foil and placing in the crock pot on high for 4 hours or low for 6-8 hours. You can bake it wrapped in foil at 400 degrees for 40-50 minutes. Or the easiest, by popping it in the microwave for 10 minutes. 

If you cooked your potato in the oven, keep it on. If you didn't, preheat your oven or toaster oven to 400 degrees. Once your potato is cooked, make a cut across the top and open your sweet potato. Scrape the insides. Keeping it all in the skin, mix a pat of coconut oil, salt and pepper with the sweet potato insides. Create a little well in the potato. Crack the egg right into the potato. Place it back in the oven and bake 10-15 minutes, or until the egg is set. I like my egg running so 10 minutes was enough. 

Top with a little more s&p, and some red pepper flakes for heat!

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Annie