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Entries in almonds (41)

Sunday
Apr132014

Honey Almond Quinoa Granola

Honey Almond Quinoa Granola

The sun is peeking over the horizon when my alarm buzzes in the morning, my bedroom a hazy gray. The dim light makes it feel like a new day instead of a tired continuum of night. This has made all the difference, it seems, in mood and spirit. The long winter is over, the sun is warm once more, and it feels like a weight has been lifted off my shoulders.

I am beginning to feel human again. It is the most glorious feeling.

Honey Almond Quinoa Granola Honey Almond Quinoa Granola

I've been having a hard time finding my voice these last few months. I can hold words in my mind as well as water cupped between my hands. Eventually the water slips through my fingers, as do any thoughts I may have wished to share. For the first time in years, the recipes have slowed. I want to write when I have something to say, not to just fill this space with empty thoughts.

I am certain the recipes will come more often in the future, but for now I need more time to myself: to think, to breathe, to find the words to say. Thank you for being patient and supportive—it means so much.

Honey Almond Quinoa Granola

A few times a year, I make a large batch of granola to last me through a busy week. When creating this granola, I sifted through the cupboards to gather together a few ingredients, missing so many of the common ingredients such as dried fruits or chocolate chips. In the end, it didn't matter. Whole grains, nuts, and a natural sweetener brought this granola together, making it something quite unique.

This may be both the healthiest and most enjoyable granola I have ever made. I hope you feel the same.

Honey Almond Quinoa Granola Honey Almond Quinoa Granola

Honey Almond Quinoa Granola is a whole grain breakfast both filling and wholesome (and gluten-free). The quinoa provides a lovely crunch, with honey for sweetness, and toasted almonds for nuttiness. Over the course of a week, I enjoyed this granola drowned in milk, sprinkled over yogurt, and eaten by the handful for a midnight snack. Healthy and delightful, this is a breakfast you can feel good about.

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Sunday
Mar092014

Almond Cake

Almond Cake Almond Cake Almond Cake

This year I have been about simple food—simple muffins, classic desserts, and hearty loaves of bread. Truthfully, I haven't had the energy for layer cakes or multi-step desserts as of late. The endless winter has taken what little I have left to give. There is no fuss, no frosting, no flair in my cooking. The focus has been solely on flavor and all the many straightforward forms it may come in. A simple goal, perhaps, but one I believe worth pursuing.

This Almond Cake falls squarely under simple food, but nothing about the flavor is plain. The sweetness rings true, a pure blend of almond and vanilla bean that is wholly dreamy in theory and in reality.

Almond CakeAlmond Cake

I made this cake twice over the last two weeks (and would make it again in a heartbeat should the ingredients find their way into my cupboard). The first occasion was on a Monday evening after a long day's work. When it cooled, I wrapped it up tight so I could photograph it the next afternoon, much to my boyfriend's dismay. Once the scent of almond had settled into the apartment, it was hard to ignore the cake on the counter. The next afternoon, once the photographs were finally taken, we split the cake in two, each eating half and calling it dinner. We had no regrets.

The second time I made it and brought it to a family gathering, leaving it unadorned with a jar of raspberry jam to complement it. It disappeared quickly once again, as little slivers were stolen for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. It is a classic cake which can be dolled up for a fancy dinner or left simple for an afternoon treat, but never will it disappoint.

Almond Cake

This Almond Cake is a simple one, the ingredients common and the flavors pure, but it is somehow utterly unforgettable. A jar of almond paste and the seeds from a vanilla bean provide the flavor to the cake's tender crumb. Though the cake in the photographs is slightly overbaked, it still turned out well, the oven providing a toasted almond flavor to the outer edge. The glaze is optional; the cake is lovely enough left bare. However, I do recommend cutting a slice and spreading your favorite jam across the side. It will be memorable.

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Sunday
Feb092014

Chocolate Almond Biscotti

Chocolate Almond Biscotti

My life has been full of simple pleasures lately. Dunking a few Oreos in my weekend cup of freshly ground coffee. A night spent out at the movies, stashing a small snack in my coat pocket (don't pretend you haven't done it). An expensive plate of sushi because life is too short not to enjoy good food. A bottle of Cabernet Sauvignon to accompany a simple spaghetti weeknight dinner.

The pleasures may be small, but together they form a contented moment in time.

Chocolate Almond Biscotti Chocolate Almond Biscotti Chocolate Almond Biscotti

As a first year teacher, I don't have a lot of time to myself. My days are filled with teaching, my afternoons with grading, and my evenings with lesson planning. In the last few months, I have spent most of my time cooped up in my apartment, partly due to the workload, partly due to the frigid, unforgiving weather. These simple pleasures often provide a bright spot of light to an otherwise normal day. Simple, yes, but they add the right level of spice.

Treating yourself comes in many forms. How have you treated yourself today?

Chocolate Almond Biscotti

Chocolate Almond Biscotti is one of the small pleasures I enjoyed last weekend. Biscotti is a simple dessert, though it often appears more complex than it is. The word "biscotti" means twice cooked and that is precisely what these cookies are. Cookies are baked up as a "loaf" before they are sliced, laid on their sides, and baked once more. As the baker, you have the control over how soft or crisp these cookies become, adapting them precisely to your taste.

Dipped in coffee, tea, or a large glass of milk, these cookies are happiness in its pure and simple form.

Chocolate Almond Biscotti

Chocolate Almond Biscotti are crisp and best enjoy while dunked into your favorite beverage. Cocoa powder provides a deep chocolate flavor to the cookies while toasted almonds give them their crunch. A light chocolate drizzle helps to set the cookies off, providing just the right amount of decadence. Whether enjoyed during a stolen moment in the morning or as an afternoon snack, these biscotti bring about a sweet moment to be savored.

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