I have two tween boys, and the sheer volume of food that they can put away really makes me fear for the teen years. What is going to happen when they hit their real growth spurt? We go through snacks like nobody's business around here, and because of my reluctance to purchase many packaged items, I am always baking something for them to nosh on. Lately I've been focused on making snacks that are high in protein, so the boys are satisfied for more than twenty minutes at a time and so I can go for more than one day between baking marathons.
Where I live, it has been a rainy, cold summer. I have been inundated with photos of friends in other parts of the country, in pools and waterparks, trying to keep cool during these past few hot months. I will admit to feeling pangs of jealousy, as I turn on the oven to make pizza, not being concerned if the house temperature goes up a few degrees, because I am wearing fuzzy slippers and a long-sleeved shirt.
I know how it is; I really do. Summer can be packed with activities; maybe the kids are at camp while you're frantically trying to get your work done in time to pick them up, maybe you spent the day at the splash pad with a preschooler and a toddler and now feel like you're on the verge of collapse, maybe you took the tweens to the amusement park and you feel like you lost your mind in the process. It's hot, you're sweaty, and the last thing you feel like doing is making dinner.
Every once in a while, a new plant-based product comes around that piques my interest. Normally, I'm fairly immune to the charms of packaged foods proclaiming that they are vegan, dairy-free, egg-free, gluten-free, high in fibre, high in protein, high in iron, chock-full of Vitamin C, Omega-3-enriched, and/ or filled with magical unicorn dust and granulated rainbows. But every now and then, something catches my eye and I feel the need to try it.
The other day I was at the grocery store, and I noticed this product:
This recipe was born from two very different dining experiences, in two very different places.
Last year my husband and I were in Las Vegas, celebrating a friend's 50th birthday with three other couples. The guys were out doing manly things (car racing) while us ladies hung out by the pool. We ventured inside to grab some lunch and I had the most incredible arugula and quinoa salad, with slices of sundried tomatoes. I thought about that salad incessantly for months after and tried to recreate the dressing, without huge success.
If there's one thing I've learned in life, it is that people have strong feelings about potato salad. Here's the thing: I have never liked potato salad. I do not like boiled potatoes, and COLD boiled potatoes are even worse. It doesn't matter what kind of dressing is used or what else is in the salad, I have a very strong aversion to it. This has caused much angst for the people in my life who do like potato salad, and who want to convert me.
Several years ago, an intoxicated man snuck into the Calgary Zoo after hours and climbed into the Siberian tiger enclosure. The man scaled a 15 foot fence, complete with barbed wire, and then jumped over the second safety fence so that he was directly next to the tiger enclosure. The startled tiger snagged the man's arm with his claw, which resulted in a loss of that arm.
A few weeks ago I was in my favourite local grocery store, and I noticed they had a number of items on sale in the "Baking Needs" aisle. I am a person who loves to bake and who also likes a good sale - I may or may not save my grocery receipts just to show my husband and/ or mother just how much I received in promotional discounts on any given day. What can I say, I like praise.
You know those moms who look totally put together at school drop-off? The ones who are wearing coordinated, stylish outfits, with blow-dried hair and lip gloss? The ones wearing wedge heels at the playground; I repeat, heels at the playground, for the love of god?
Don’t you hate those women? I mean, how much time do they have on their hands anyway? Who has time to doll themselves up like that for school drop-off? Can they hear their children crying for them over the sound of the blow dryer?
I have a confession to make: I am one of those moms.
I absolutely love pasta. Pasta Night happens weekly at my house, and it is one of my favourite nights of the week. For one thing, pasta is quick and easy to prepare, and for another, everyone in my family loves it. You just cannot get better than that!
Who among us hasn't snuck a bite of the cookie dough when it is raw? A bite of raw cookie dough is one of the great pleasures of making cookies - but if there are eggs involved, it is also one of the great risks. Wouldn't it be nice to eat raw cookie dough without the fear of salmonella?
I'm glad you agree that it would; enter this recipe for Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Drops, made with chickpeas. I normally think of chickpeas as a savoury dish - probably everyone else does, too - but they actually work very well as a base for a sweet treat.