Cold-Brew Coffee

Cold Brew Coffee

I feel like we've come to a point in our blogging relationship where I can be open and honest with you about something I'm not proud of... I'm completely dependent on my daily morning and afternoon coffee.  As in cannot function without it.  It's unhealthy in more ways than one, I know, but I love it.  What I don't love is the amount of money I spend on it every month thanks to my penchant for high quality coffee and independently-owned cafes.

Cold Brew Coffee

Enter this homemade cold-brew coffee.  It couldn't be easier to make and saves my wallet (as well as my sanity) in those hot summer months when all I want is to have an iced coffee in hand at all times.  And maybe an ice cream cone in the other.

Cold-Brew Coffee
makes 2-3 servings

1/3 cup coarsely ground coffee
1 1/2 cups water

  1. Combine coffee and water in a 2-cup jar with a tight-fitting lid and let sit at room temperature for 12 hours or overnight.
  2. Strain/filter to remove grounds. (I like to pour the coffee through a coffee filter to make sure I remove all the grounds as well as the silt at the bottom.)
  3. Refrigerate until completely chilled and dilute with water and/or milk before serving as this is a very concentrated coffee. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.


Vegan Strawberry Shortcake

Vegan Strawberry Shortcake

I made these vegan strawberry shortcakes a handful of times last summer and they are always a hit, especially among the non-vegans!  It may have something to do with their inherently lowered standards as soon as they hear the word "vegan," but I like to think the shortcakes are just that good.

Vegan Strawberry Shortcake

I was lucky enough to find some super sweet strawberries at the farmers market that were begging me to slather them with vanilla frosting and sandwich them between two flaky biscuits - what could I do but oblige? If only it could be summer all year round.

Vegan Strawberry Shortcake

Vegan Strawberry Shortcake
from Babycakes by Erin McKenna
makes 12 shortcakes

3 cups white spelt flour, plus 1/2 cup for dusting
1/2 cup evaporated cane juice
1 1/2 tbsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
7 tbsp coconut oil
1 tbsp vanilla extract
2/3 cup hot water
Vanilla Frosting (recipe below)
2 1/2 - 3 cups stemmed and sliced fresh strawberries

  1. Adjust oven racks and preheat to 350 degrees F. Line 2 baking sheets.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, evaporated cane juice, baking powder, and salt. Add the oil, vanilla, and hot water to the dry ingredients. Combine until a slightly moist dough is formed.
  3. Dust the counter generously with spelt flour. Roll the dough through the flour until it is coated on all sides. Gently pat the dough into a 1-inch-thick rectangle and cut out 12 shortcakes with a 2.75-inch round cookie cutter. Place the shortcakes about 1 inch apart on the prepared baking sheets. Bake the shortcakes for 9 minutes, rotate pans, and bake for 7 more minutes. The finished shortcakes will have a slightly golden, flaky crust.
  4. Let the shortcakes cool on the sheets for 15 minutes, or until completely cool. Cut them in half horizontally and spread each side with 1 tbsp vanilla frosting. Spoon 1 generous tbsp strawberries onto one of the halves and top with the second half. Repeat with the remaining biscuits. Store the filled shortcakes in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 2 days.

Vanilla Frosting
from Babycakes by Erin McKenna

3/4 cups unsweetened soy milk
3/4 cup dry soy milk powder
1 tbsp coconut flour
1/4 cup agave nectar
1 tbsp vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups coconut oil
2 tbsp lemon juice

  1. In a blender or food processor, combine the soy milk, soy powder, coconut flour, agave nectar, and vanilla. Blend the ingredients for 2 minutes. With the machine running, slowly add the oil and lemon juice, alternating between the two until both are fully incorporated. Pour the mixture into an airtight container and refrigerate for 6 hours or up to 1 month.


Best Banana Bread Ever

Banana Bread

Hey guys! I'm sorry I've neglected you, it's been forever since I've written a food post. I've been suuuupppper busy with work and school stuff and there's more stress to come so don't be alarmed if we go another few months without speaking, just know that I miss you and am anxious to get back to a regular posting schedule :)

Aaaanyways, this is a recipe that I've been meaning to post for a while now (at least a year) and haven't gotten around to it, but the day has finally come! It's my favorite banana bread recipe ever, and I've definitely tried my hand at quite a few. It's from (pretty much my favorite) cookbook, Flour. Everything I've made from that book has been awesome, I'd absolutely recommend adding it to your bookshelf if you haven't already. One piece of advice on this recipe - don't omit the walnuts. I usually detest nuts in my banana bread but for some reason they go so well with this version.

Banana Bread

1 1/2 cups (210 g) unbleached all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp kosher salt
1 cup plus 2 tbsp (230 g) sugar
2 eggs
1/2 cup canola oil
3 1/2 very ripe, medium bananas, peeled and mashed (1 1/3 cups mashed/about 340 g)
2 tbsp creme fraiche or sour cream
1 tsp vanilla extract
3/4 cup (75 g) walnut halves, toasted and chopped

  1. Position a rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 325 degrees F. Butter a 9x5-inch loaf pan.
  2. In a medium bowl, sift together the flour, baking soda, cinnamon and salt. Set aside.
  3. Using a stand mixer fitted with the whip attachment, beat together the sugar and eggs on medium speed for about 5 minutes, or until light and fluffy. On low speed, slowly drizzle in the oil. (Do not pour in all at once! Adding the oil should take about 1 minute.) Add the bananas, creme fraiche/sour cream, and vanilla and continue mixing on low speed just until combined.
  4. Using a rubber spatula, fold in the flour mixture and nuts just until thoroughly combined. (No flour streaks should be visible and nuts should be evenly distributed.) Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan and smooth the top.
  5. Bake for 1 - 1 1/4 hours, or until golden brown on top and the center springs back when you press it. Let cool on a wire rack for at least 30 minutes, then remove it from the pan to finish cooling.

The banana bread can be stored tightly wrapped in plastic wrap at room temperature for up to 3 days. For longer storage wrap tightly in plastic wrap and freeze for up to 2 weeks; thaw overnight at room temperature.


Versatile Blogger Award


I'm so excited right now, Sara from Redhead Cuisine has honored me with the Versatile Blogger award! I feel so humbled that people even read my blog, and to be given an award for it is just beyond anything I ever expected when I started. Thank you Sara!

The official rules for accepting this award are as follows:
  1. Add the award to your blog
  2. Thank the blogger who gave it to you
  3. Mention 7 random things about yourself
  4. List the rules
  5. Award to 15 bloggers
  6. Inform each of those 15 by leaving a comment on their blogs or on Facebook.

Sooooo....7 random things about me? Here we go:
  1. I'm left handed.
  2. A lot of people know I'm from hawaii but not many know that I was actually born in Ohio.
  3. When I'm not baking I like to knit.
  4. My two favorite foods are salmon sashimi and braised pork belly.
  5. I'm returning to school in the fall to get a degree in Dietetics.
  6. I baked my first cake when I was 3...with the help of my mom of course :)
  7. I own over 200 bottles of nail polish :/

Selecting just 15 bloggers to pass this award on to was tough, I read so many amazing blogs these days, it's hard to keep up!

I guess that's it, thanks again Sara! :)


Hazelnut Biscotti [TWD]

Hazelnut Biscotti

I'm so bad about posting these challenge posts on time lately! Ah well. I thought these were just okay as far as flavor and texture goes, but I really liked how fast and easy they were to make. I doubt I'll ever make them again, there are definitely better biscotti recipes out there... I did like the cool little trick I learned for removing the skins from hazelnuts - all you do is add some baking soda to boiling water and boil the nuts until the water turns black. You just keep taking a nut out and testing if the skin rubs off easily, once it does they're all ready to be de-skinned (is that a word?).

As always, the recipe for these can be found on this week's hosts' blogs, here and here, as well as in the Baking With Julia cookbook.