Easy Everything Bagel Fries

Easy Everything Bagel Fries

HECK YEAH it’s another potato post. Potatoes just happen to be my favorite food, and ever since it’s debut, I’ve been obsessed with Trader Joe’s Everything But the Bagel seasoning salt. Hence, today I share with you these easy oven-baked everything bagel fries.

Easy Baked Everything Bagel Fries

These came about on a Thursday evening as I was trying to use up the last 2 potatoes in a 5-pound bag I had purchased Sunday. A quick math calculation made me realize I average eating about a potato a day. I’m more than okay with this statistic.

Easy Baked Everything Bagel Fries

Anyways, I was texting with my dear friend Caty about her recent appreciation of Everything But the Bagel Seasoning Salt, and suddenly, my own craving for the stuff set in. Fresh out of avocado (my go-to for an Everything But the Bagel Seasoning Salt), I decided to wedge up my taters and make everything bagel fries in the oven.

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Chocolate Covered Plantain Chips

You know what the best section is at Trader Joe’s?

Chocolate Covered Plantain Chips Vegan 3 Ingredients !

Okay that’s a faulty question. Because there is way too much good stuff at Trader Joe’s to pick a favorite product, let alone a favorite section. One time my manager asked me what my favorite products were “right now,”, which I thought was a better question than asking me what my “favorite products” were because that list would be overwhelming.  Right now in this 30 second increment of my life I can say that my favorite section is the candy section. In particular, anything that starts with the three magic words, “Dark Chocolate Covered…”

Vegan Chocolate Covered Plantain Chips Vegan

Yes, all those magical tiny rectangular boxes are full of the bestest things covered in the bestest chocolate. When I’m not eating Gone Bananas by the box, I also love the Dark Chocolate Covered Almonds with Sea Salt and Turbinado Sugar (which inspired this recipe), and the Dark Chocolate Lover’s Bar. Holy balls is their chocolate good.

Chocolate Covered Plantain Chips. Vegan & So Easy!

Another recent favorite Trader Joe’s combination of mine is the epic duo of the Spicy Chunky Guacamole with the Roasted Plantain Chips. A co-worker (hi, SG!) informed me of this dynamic marriage of salty/sweet/crunchy/smooth/spicy and I have been hooked since the first bite. It is love.

Chocolate Covered Plantain Chips  Vegan

I went a little overboard last time I purchased Plantain Chips and bought three bags forgetting that I had two at home. Which left me with five bags of plantain chips. So what’s a girl to do? Dip ’em in Dark Chocolate, of course, and combine my love of Trader Joe’s Dark Chocolate with by dipping their other products in the stuff and calling it bliss.

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So that’s just what I did. I dipped me some crunchy, salty, carby plantain chips in dark chocolate. It’s kind of like chocolate covered banana chips, but better in my humble opinion, because you also get the salty element from the roasted plantain chip. And you know I’m utterly in love with anything salty/sweet.

Chocolate Covered Plantain Chips. Vegan & So Easy !

These are very simple to make and require only a few minutes and 2-3 ingredients depending on your level of fussiness when it comes to them staying not-melty at room temperature (a tablespoon of coconut oil should help you avoid any melty chocolate!) but they work perfectly without it.

Chocolate Covered Plantain Chips. Vegan : So Easy!

I urge you to make these and please know that summer is coming as is a bit less stress and more sanity which means lots more tasty treats and a really exciting baby project coming to your internet waves soon. Until then, please view Millie with an emoji banana.

Millie & Banana Emoji

Yes, I thought this SnapChat was so funny I sent it to myself so I could open it later and lol at my own terrible humor. Yes I do that and yes I’m aware that’s perhaps not normal. But like this guy says, stay weird stay different. (Also yes, I am stalking Columbia’s instagram lately…and yes there might be a very exciting reason !) #staytuned #stayclassy #eatchocolatecoveredplantainchips [side note, you can totally tell which photos have “wet” chocolate, pre-setting, and which ones have “set” chocolate. total color change. goooooey] Prep Time: 5 minutes Cooling Time: 20 minutes Level: Easy Ingredients:

  • 1 1/4 cup plantain chips (I used Trader Joe’s)
  • 3/4 cup chopped dark chocolate or dark chocolate chips (I used Trader Joe’s 72% Dark Chocolate Pound Plus bar)
  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil (optional, but will help prevent meltiness if left out at room temperature)

Directions: 1. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside. In a microwave safe bowl, warm chocolate until melted. Use 30 second microwave increments, and stir after each increment until chocolate has melted. This should take about 60-90 seconds total. Stir in coconut oil until smooth and melted into chocolate. 2. Dip each plantain chip on each side into melted chocolate. Place each on parchment lined baking sheet. Repeat with chips until you run out of chocolate. 3. Place baking sheet full of plantain chips in the freezer  to set, at least 20 minutes. Store in an airtight container (preferably in the refrigerator) for up to two weeks. Enjoy 🙂

Salted Maple Vanilla Cashew Coconut Butter

….the name says it all. Basically everything luscious and wonderful all in one glorious place: a homemade jar of nut butter and very soon your mouth.

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Cashews have been my thing lately. Well, truly, they’ve always been up there on my top 5 fav nuts (along with walnut, pecans, pistachios, almonds, peanuts) for snacking and as a flavoring agent, but lately I’ve recently discovered just how ridiculously versatile they are from a culinary prospective. I’m very excited to start using them in new ways ~ ! Unfortunately for me, my pantry/fridge are almond empty and so I couldn’t make several of the things I’ve been itchin’ to try. So I took what I had once again, and created this concoction.

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The name makes it sound all fancy-smancy because I used the word “salted” but really this is a pretty basic nut butter. I made cashew butter, and instead of adding vegetable oil for viscosity the way many peanut butter recipes call for, I added coconut oil for smoothness, and for the additional flavor and nutritional boost. I thought vanilla would compliment the *~*tropical*~* flavors nicely, and decided to go with maple syrup for a touch of sweetness instead of sugar, and added salt because I really love a good sea salt. (I’m all about the pink Himalayan, hbu?). All of these flavors together was like a really great group bonding session. Everyone brought out the best in one another, and the result was a mild, smooth, sweet-salty, rich nutty delight, with a coconut after-kick.

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Homemade nut butters are fun and truly not very complicated to make. I like them because you can personalize them to your own tastes (I like things crunchy and a little bit salty, and not too sweet) but you can tweak them however you please and see exactly what goes in them (no hydrogenated palm kernel oil for me plz!). All you need is a few basic ingredients, a food processor or blender, and like 10 minutes. 60-80 if you’re highly distractible and have needy dogs and want to take photos for your blog and are having hopeful breakthroughs in what you should do with your life, like I did. Hello friends, I’m crazy.

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Anyways, I’d like to warn you: this stuff is addictive. I made it a lil crunchy because that’s my style. If you ask me, when it comes to nut butters once you go crunchy you never go back. This particular nut butt is absolutely magnificent on top of toast and bananas and on toast between bananas and smeared on chunks of chocolate or with pretzels or crackers or straight from the jar on a spoon or on my fingers (let’s be honest). No matter how you consume it, it’s pretty wonderful. It shall take you from the humid tropics of your backyard in Wisconsin or your tiny studio East Village apartment to a warm yet breezy climate controlled beach in the middle of paradise. Get out the drink umbrellas for your smoothies, children, today’s gonna be a good day 8-).

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Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 0 minutes

Level: Easy

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups raw cashews
  • 3 tablespoons coconut oil
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup (optional)

Directions:

1. Place raw cashews in a food processor or blender. Grind until a fine powder forms.

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2. Add coconut oil at room temperature (semi-solid) into the food processor. Continue blending until contents reach a nut-butter consistency. If you want thicker butter, add less coconut oil; if you want it runnier, add more. I stopped the grinding when it was chunky because I like chunky nut butters, but if you like it smooth, keep blendin’ til you get the smooth butter you desire.

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3. Add vanilla, sea salt, and maple syrup (optional) into the nut butter and stir gently with a spoon or spatula.

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4. Place nut butter into an airtight container or lidded jar and store at room temperature up to a few weeks. You can also put it in fridge but please be aware that it will cause it to harden a little bit (it will soften as it warms again to room temp).

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5. Enjoy on anything and everything! #healthyfats #PUFAs #MUFAs #yummys

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Homemade Take 5 with a Delicious Graham-y Twist

Do you know what I love? Candy. Always have, always will. I have longtime standing favorites, like the Kit-Kat, which I conquered in the kitchen here, but a more recent candy to hit the scene and secure a place in my heart is the oh-so-wonderful Take 5 Bar.

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In my humble opinion, these beauties are underrated. They are simple in principle (pretzel, caramel, peanut butter, peanuts, chocolate) but perfectly combine the salty-sweet-crunchy-chewy combo, which I consider to be synonymous with the ideal dessert. It’s like a mash up of the Salty Pimp and American Glob minus the soft serve. And y’all know ANYTHING that reminds me of Big Gay Ice Cream is the way to my <3.

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Any sweet treat I like to eat I like even more as a challenge to make in the kitchen. And hence, the homemade Take 5 Bar became this afternoon’s adventure after a lovely hour long stroll with Millie and her Uncle James. She also functioned as a sous-chef/major creeper in the process of making these babies (see below).

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I googled recipes and found a lot of Take-5-like layer bars, but those didn’t satisfy my desire to duplicate down to appearance. The only possible problem I came across while conceptualizing was how to avoid the pretzel topped with the goodies to stay together when I dipped em in chocolate. I decided I needed a base. And then I thought of graham crackers. I love graham crackers, so I decided that adding them to Take 5 Bars would only make them better. I was correct in this idea. Huge fan.

This recipe is not gluten-free, sugar-free, paleo, #fitspro, or antioxident rich. It is, however, delicious. And as much as I am a typically healthy eater I stand by my belief that nourishing your mind and your taste buds is just as important as nourishing your body.

So here is my recipe for Take-5s ft. Graham Crackers. Make these. Eat them. All of them. Top them on vanilla soft serve for best results. *~*drool*~*

Ingredients:

  • 1 sleeve graham crackers (9-10 whole crackers)
  • 1 cup “Snaps” shapped pretzels
  • 1 cup caramel candies (use a nicer kind, like werther’s baking caramels)
  • about 1/3-1/2 cup peanut butter
  • about 1 cup salted peanuts
  • 18 oz chocolate chips (1 and a half bags)
  • sea salt (optional)

Directions:

1. Break graham crackers into quarters. Just follow those handy lines on the squares. I know you can do this. I believe in you.

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2. Unwrap caramel candies. I highly recommend you do not skip this step. Place said caramels in a microwave safe bowl and microwave for about 30-45 seconds on high until *~*melty*~* <3

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3. Use a knife to spread gooey melty caramel onto each graham rectangle. This works best if you set up a nice parchment paper work tray on a baking sheet.

4. Press 2 pretzels on top of each graham rectangle.

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5.Take your peanut butter and spread it on top of the pretzel layer.

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6. Sprinkle 5-6 peanuts on each peanut-butter-covered rectangle.

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7. Pour chocolate chips into a microwave safe bowl. Microwave for 1-2 minutes in 30 second intervals, stirring at each interval until melty and smooth.

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8. Use a spatula or knife to scoop chocolate on top of each bar and smother the crap out of it in with chocolatey goodness.  Sprinkle with sea salt if you are fancy. I am fancy. Not “so fancy,” though. Just the regular type.

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9.Place each on on parchment paper lined tray and freeze until chocolate is set.

10. Eat.

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