Instant Energy


My family isn’t nearly as sporty as Lisa’s but that doesn’t mean we don’t appreciate a good, portable, high energy snack. A friend of mine found this recipe on Detoxinista and although the name of the site made me think these would be way too green and healthy for us, they just taste great. Honestly, they taste like cookie dough. Click here for the recipe, and then keep ’em in the freezer for a quick boost.

Peanut Butter and Jam After School Cooky Bars

pbj bars

Third grade.

Third grade was walking to school with Anne, April, Nicky, and Jennifer; it was my mom back at work full time. Third grade was Miss Gibson and her flame of red hair, her long nails, her “math minutes,” and a big project on Alaska. And third grade was coming home after school, my parents still at work for a couple hours, and making PB&J cracker towers with my brother, seeing who could make the tallest stack, laughing as we stuffed the crumbling towers into our mouths.

Feeding the Animals

by Caroline

All of these posts are always about feeding animals, of course, but today I’m not writing about the one who complains about quesadillas again or about whom I wonder if he’ll ever eat a cooked vegetable again.

Today, I am writing about my favorite creature of habit, our hamster, Waffle, a sweet, fluffy little critter that has become a quiet and unobtrusive member of the family. She eats like a bird — literally, a mixture of nuts and seeds (although her habit of stuffing them, six or seven at a time into her furry, elastic cheeks is not very bird-like.) We augment with fresh vegetable scraps –apple peelings and the ends of carrots — and she holds them delicately between her paws and nibbles them, a tiny compost machine.

It never occurred to any of us to do more for her (and honestly, I might have shot down any requests for more elaborate hamster meals, given the energy it takes just to feed the other animals in the family) but then a friend gave the boys this:

And we were all so charmed, we did this:

Making one raw vegetable pizza and one parsley bouquet:

And Waffle took it all apart and ate it like this:

Homemade Nutella or, Because it’s there

by Caroline

I guess I feel about recipes the way some people feel about mountains. It’s there in front of you, so why not give it a shot? There is really no pressing need to make nutella (you could push it and say there’s no pressing need to eat nutella, but I won’t go so far), but when you find a recipe that looks so easy, and promises a result so delicious, why not? Besides, it’s summer. And in summer, we say yes.

1 cup hazelnuts
1/4 cup cocoa powder
1/2 cup powdered sugar
3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
3-4 tablespoons vegetable oil

Preheat the oven to 350. Spread the nuts on a baking sheet and toast them in the oven for 10-11 minutes, or until fragrant. Wrap them in a kitchen towel and rub them to remove the skin; use your fingers as they cool and do the best you can — it won’t all come off. Let the nuts cool.

Grind the nuts in the food processor until smooth, about 3 minutes. Add the remaining ingredients and continue blending until smooth and spreadable.

This keeps at room temperature for three days, apparently, or in the fridge for two months, but we wouldn’t know.