Spelt Banana Bread Brownies with Brown Butter Icing

Banana Bread Brownies with Brown Butter Icing

This recipe is perfect for when you have some ultra-ripe, black-spotted bananas looking meaningfully at you from your kitchen counter.  Instead of turning them into the same banana bread as last time (as tasty as that is!), try these beautiful, warming brownies topped with the most delicious ingredient of all time: browned butter.

I mean, seriously.  Is there anything better than browned butter?  The answer is NO.  No there is not.  Browned butter is heavenly.

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Are you busy all the time?  Most of the time?  Dinnertime?  Yep, I thought so.

The summer has flown by, and my kids are already getting ready to go back to school.  I swear, before I know it it will be time for the holidays and we will be on to the new year.  The days seem to slip away so quickly!  As I get older, and as my children grow up, I value my time more and more.

Juggling kids and work and chores and shopping can be a daunting task.  Not to mention the ability to actually prepare and serve dinner every day, and those pesky breakfasts and lunches, too.  And I want those meals to be healthy: traditional fats, whole grains, fresh produce.

The good news?  You CAN prepare nutrient-dense meals from scratch for your family — in a fraction of the time. You just need to learn the tricks!  And all 17 of these fabulous bloggers are in the know!

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Individual Berry Crumbles

homemade blueberry buckle

It’s Ramekin Week, so that means that we are making all kinds of delectable treats, sweets, and savory wonders in these adorable little ceramic containers, baked in the oven.  Today are these individual blueberry crumbles.  

I know that a lot of people love chocolate, but give me berries and cinnamon any day!

This recipe is a riff on a traditional holiday recipe that my husband’s family always eats Christmas morning: blueberry buckle.  But I decided to make them individual buckles so that each person could have their own.  Plus, the cooking time is cut down a bit by baking them individually. [Read more…]

Baked Breakfast Egg Cups

baked egg cups

It’s Ramekin Week, so that means that we are making all kinds of delectable treats, sweets, and savory wonders in these adorable little ceramic containers, baked in the oven.  Today are these satisfying savory breakfast cups.

Egg cups are one of the simplest and most elegant ramekin concoctions I have been able to come up with.  And the best part is that you can add in any leftover potatoes, pastas, herbs, or cheeses that you have around.  Use up your leftovers, and get a warm savory breakfast!

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What Does 3,000 Calories a Day Look Like?

3000 calories a day

Now that I am more than 60 days into my concentrated effort to get healthy and lose some weight, I have been asked many times to specify what I eat during a typical day.  People often wonder how I manage to eat 3,000 calories per day.  Yes, I am eating 3,000 calories a day and losing weight.  

First of all, I eat between 2,500 and 3,000 calories a day, depending on how hungry I am.  This post shows how much I eat on a particularly hungry day, mostly likely the day after I went weight-lifting! [Read more…]

Apple Cinnamon Soaked Granola

homemade soaked granola

Homemade granola is about as “crunchy” as you can get!  In fact, every time I make a batch, my hubby has to comment on how I’m such a hippie granola tree-hugging waffle-stomper.  So rest assured that this granola is yummy enough for me to make it in spite of knowing the grief I will get for it!

This granola is packed with goodies: homemade dehydrated apples, organic raisins, warm cinnamon, floral honey, good vanilla, toasted almonds, and shredded coconut.  It’s the perfect real food breakfast, and you can make it in large batches to replace your family’s hankering for cereal in the morning. [Read more…]

How to Make Cinnamon Chips

cinnamon chips chocolate chip only better!

What are cinnamon chips?  Well, they are like chocolate chips only better!  The first time I even knew what cinnamon chips were was during my 3 year stint in Michigan while I worked at a bread store and bakery.  My favorite bread that we made there was a loaf of whole wheat cinnamon bread with oatmeal, dates, and…cinnamon chips!

Most cinnamon chips that you can buy commercially are made with palm oil, white sugar, non-fat dry milk, and an emulsifier like soy lecithin.  Fortunately, my cinnamon chip recipe is only four ingredients, and has a beautiful texture without the aid of any questionable additives.  [Read more…]

My Love Affair with Coffee: An Ode to the Caramel Macchiato

How to Make an Iced Caramel Macchiato better than the coffee shop | OUR NOURISHING ROOTS #coffee #cuppa #cuppajoe #summerdrinks #icedcoffee #naturalsweeteners

I only started drinking coffee a few years ago, and the first drink I had was carefully chosen and recommended to me by my sister: a bonafide coffee aficionado.  The drink she chose for me was a beautiful, honey-colored iced caramel macchiato.  As I sipped it I could feel my inner Italian sit up and take notice.  Coffee is amazing!

To this day the caramel macchiato remains at the top of the list for favorite coffee drinks.  It’s the perfect mix of sweet, salty, rich, and deeply roasted flavors.  The only thing better is making one at home from ingredients that are best quality possible.  My recipe tastes as good as anything you can order at your local coffee shop.

Macchiato literally means “marked”, or sometimes “stained”.  Sometimes called a latte macchiato, the name refers to stained milk since the espresso is added to the milk, swirling to darken it, and not the other way around.  In other words, the emphasis is on the milk.  It is a latte, after all.
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Cheddar Bacon Scones

cheddar bacon scones

There is something about the rich crumbly scone and salty bite of the bacon and cheese that really gets me going in the morning.  Have this sweet and salty wedge alongside some pastured eggs and a small cup of triple-certified coffee or freshly-squeezed juice.  You will feel transported to

I have always been more inclined to choose a savory pastry over any of the sweet varieties.  Don’t get me wrong: I think glazed donuts are one of the most delicious things in the world!  In spite of all my real foodification over the last few years, sugar glaze still gets me every time.  But even sugar glaze can’t pry one of these cheddar bacon scones out of my hand.  I am a sucker for savory in the end.  Every time. [Read more…]

The Anti-Diet Challenge, Day 1

antidietIt’s time to start the Anti-Diet Challenge, woohoo!  You can read about why I am hosting the Anti-Diet Challenge here.  The “rules” are simple, ha!:

  • Eat foods that sound good.  Be intuitive.  Want ice cream for breakfast?  Try it.  See how you feel.  For me, it makes me feel awesome and warm!  And after a while, I lost interest in ice cream, because I didn’t think it was “bad” anymore.  Now I just eat it when I want to, and I don’t worry about it.  And when I do eat it, it’s usually earlier in the day, not at night.  Go figure.
  • Don’t drink anything unless you are thirsty.  For reals.  And in general, drink less in the morning and more at night.  You want to move from less water to more throughout the day.  This one may feel counterintuitive at first, especially if you always have a water bottle and you drink water “because it’s good for you”.  Let it go!
  • Follow the meal outline below.  See how you feel.
    1. Eat starches, sugars, and/or grains for breakfast, without much water content.  This can be foods like pancakes, hash browns & eggs, waffles with berry syrup, leftover birthday cake, maple oatmeal with coconut sprinkles, or anything from my sweet and savory breakfast lists on my recipe page.
    2. Eat a large lunch that includes meat and/or protein and dessert (like cookies, not fruit), and that is eaten before 2pm.  You can make this meal with more water/liquid in it, such as adding veggies or fruits or drinking more liquids.
    3. Eat a vegetarian dinner that includes something more “watery” like veggies, soup, or both!
  • Break the meal outline rules above.  See if tweaking it helps you feel better or worse.  Trust your results.  Try eating protein for breakfast.  Try eating sugar a little later.  Eat a big breakfast instead of a big lunch.  Do what feels right.
  • Embrace sugar and salt.  Your body is made up of water, salt, and sugar.  Throwing that balance out of whack with drinking plain water is not helpful!  For example, I have found that what works for me as an after-workout drink is this: half water, half juice, generous pinch or two of salt.  Viola!  Nice and quenched, and no cold hand and feet after an hour.
  • Work out if you feel antsy.  Take a nap if you are tired.  Can’t wait to run up the side of a mountain?  Get out and go hiking!  Feel exhausted?  Take a nap for Pete’s sake!  Let’s say it together this time: listen to your body!
  • Take your temperature.  Notice what your waking temperature is.  You also may be curious if you temperature goes up after eating a big, warming meal, or if your temperature goes up or down after you get home from lifting weights at the gym.  For me, I noticed that I was getting cold after the gym and I started skipping the gym every other day to take naps instead.  After I wasn’t so tired and I was caught up on my sleep and felt like I had more energy, I would go to the gym and I would feel hotter afterwards.  As in, my temperature would sometimes reach 100 degrees!
  • Sleep enough.  Again, be intuitive.  At this point, I can tell when I am tired by whether or not my feet get cold.  You may be surprised by when your body is saying “go to bed!”  For me, this is around 8pm.  Sigh.

That’s it!  Choose one of these “rules”, or all of them, or some, or change them every day.  Although I do recommend sticking with one long enough to see if it is working for you.


Just pick a bullet point and do it!  Nuff said.

Read Diet Recovery.  Share your favorite quote from the book on today’s post in the comments.

Read Eat for Heat.  Share your favorite quote or “a-ha!” moment from the book in comments.

I will post a daily thread on Facebook and Google+ for you to chat, post photos, ask questions, and so on.

Take a picture of your awesome breakfast and post it on my Facebook and Google+ thread for that day.  Or lunch.  Or dinner.  Or snack of salted ice cream.  (Don’t knock it until you’ve tried it!)  I will be posting daily pictures.  We will see what I come up with.

Test out your toasty body in cold weather like snow and ice.  It’s fun!  And give us a picture.  That’s even more fun!

Side note: I just tested my ability to stay warm when I went to Utah last week with my kids and it was generally 9 degrees all week.  I basically wore leggings with my normal Arizona clothes and put on a hoodie.  It was kind of freakish, actually.  I am noticeably warmer than a lot of people around me.  To the point that people would comment on it sometimes.  So you have that to look forward to: out-warming the people around you in cold weather.  It’s invigorating!

So that’s it!  See you in warm-hands-and-feet land.  I cannot wait to see how we all do!