She’s back and there’s a cookbook review

6168K-vVrEL._SX419_BO1,204,203,200_Hello friends…

It feels like it’s been ages since the last blog post. Between our first trip to Italy, getting engaged, moving and loads of work travel I haven’t done much home cooking. Well, except the trip to Italy which was a cooking trip to one of the most amazing villas with my favorite chef in Seattle and there are MANY blog posts about that. But, for today all I have time to do is a quick cookbook review.

If you thought that yogurt is only for breakfast, you have a lot to learn!  You’ll learn how to use yogurt in appetizers, salads, soups, sauces, marinades, beverages, and desserts. The biggest value of this book was the step by step instructions for how to make your yogurt at home! While I haven’t tried that recipe yet, mostly because I barely have a kitchen, I totally will once I have space to make it! The recipes feature both conventional recipes as well as ethnic and savory dishes and has a nice balance between the two. Books like this help you think more about the ingredients that make up a dish, and how you can completely change a recipe by changing one ingredient.

The pictures were beautiful and inspiring but I most of the recipes are more of the novelty “ made this one time” versus being part of the regular round-up. Stay tuned for a few recipe posts from the book in the coming months.

Please note, I was provided a free copy of this book by Blogging for Books in exchange for my honest opinion.  

Weekend Breakfast: Eggplant and Scrambled Eggs

I love weekends! What’s better than waking up and realizing that the first of two day’s you’ve been looking forward to all week are finally here!

One of the best parts of the weekend, in our house, is weekend breakfast! During the week, breakfast is a chore and provides quite a bit of entertainment while I bang around opening cabinets and drawers in the attempt to find a suitable meal that can be made quickly or eaten on the go.

But Weekends…walking into the kitchen, opening the fridge and creating some delicious weekend masterpiece is nearly a religious experience for me! Today, however, there was little inspiration flowing so I gave creative powers the day off and opted for my simple “go-to” stand by’s of eggplant and and scrambled eggs.

Not only is this meal gluten-free, dairy-free, paleo, low fat but it’s also incredibly simple and quite delicious!

Eggplant & Scrambled Eggs

  • Pre-heat oven to 450
  • Slice eggplant and lay on baking sheet covered with a sheet of Reynolds Wrap Non-stick aluminum foil 
  • Misto Spray olive oil  on the top of the eggplant and season with fresh cracked pepper
  • Cook for 15-17 minutes, or until eggplant is as cooked/crispy as you like
  • When there is about 5 minutes left on the oven timer, scramble one egg with garlic, cayenne pepper, fresh cracked pepper, dried parsley and cook.
  • Enjoy!!

Today I also tried something that we picked up last week and I haven’t yet tried, Reynolds Wrap Non-stick aluminum foil (also available through My Store). We make broiled veggies 3-5 times a week and no matter how much olive oil I lather on the veggies or Misto spray on foil the eggplant ALWAYS sticks! It drives me nuts and has caused a few choice words to escape on various occasions! So, last week we picked up a roll of the alleged “non-stick” foil and today was the day! I was skeptical as I pulled it out of the drawer mentally recounting the countless fights with the baking sheet and foil as it they tried to hold onto my precious eggplant with their sticky powers.

I am quite happy to report that I’m a believer! Foil CAN be non-stick! Ring the bells, sound the horns! That foil worked wonders and I actually liked that it wasn’t quite flawless, as you can see in the photo the end cut of the eggplant stuck to the sheet a bit. Full dramatically narrated product review posted here. This is now a STAPLE of my modest little kitchen! With the tiny space that we have, every utensil, pot, pan and gadget must earn it’s spot!


And on a completely non-related side note… have you ever tried to spell  “utensil” and gotten it right the first time!? I’ll shamelessly admit that it took me a few tries… what a strange word!


Broiled Eggplant

Vegan Coffee Cake



The crumble topping was good, not too sweet and had a balanced cinnamon spice-ness. The cake was pretty simple. I like a more fluffy cake, but in it’s defense, this one did have a ‘melt in your mouth’ quality to it. Overall, it’d say its a solid cake, but it’s not necessarily the most amazing one ever. I’ll be experimenting with different recipes to find the ultimate and will keep you all posted!!



Vegan Coffee Cake
(Adapted from Usually Vegan)

1 cup whole wheat flour
1/3 cup brown sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1/4 c.+ tbps canola oil


3/4 cup soy-dairy milk
1 tsp apple cider vinegar
1/3 cup (half sugar, half honey)
1/2 cup canola oil
1 tsp vanilla
1 1/4 whole wheat flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt



  • Preheat oven to 375°F
  • Grease an 8 in. pan,
  • In a mug, mix  milk for the cake and the vinegar; set aside to curdle (trust me… you’ll know when it’s curdled)
  • Mix dry ingredients for topping well in a bowl. Slowly drizzle in canola oil by the tablespoon, using your fingers to swish around the mixture until crumbs form. Alternate drizzling and mixing until all the oil is used and large crumbs have formed.
  • Mix cake ingredients together. For this recipe, I just threw it all in a bowl and I”m wondering if maybe that lent a hand to the non-fluffy nature of the cake. next time I’ll try mixing the wet ingredients together, including the curdled milk, and separately mix the dry ingredients then combine.
  • Pour the cake batter into the prepared pan. Sprinkle crumbles on top.
  • Bake for 35 to 40 min. or until a knife inserted through the center comes out clean
  • We were supposed to let it cook for an hour before eating it, but let’s be real, who can wait an hour when the house smells like coffee cake!