Tuesday, April 29, 2014

What To Eat Before You Run a Half Marathon

Dear Turkey,

If you are going to wake up and run a half marathon (note the time on the microwave), here is my suggested breakfast: two 550-calorie muffins and a giant chai:

And here is what you can bake after:

Aztec Chocolate Cookies: a post-run recovery snack,

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

This Bread Will Cure What Ails You

Dear Turkey,

I am really excited about this bread because I only made it yesterday, and someone has already said, "this is my favorite bread ever," about it (and that someone wasn't me). I also love it because it uses molasses instead of regular sugar, and molasses is delicious. This bread is also really easy to make.

I found the recipe on one of those blogs that I was telling you about, where the blogger looks like a model who never eats. I like this blog, though, and she attributes the recipe to our old friend Mark Bittman. The only change I made is that she suggests plain fat free yogurt, and I suggest vanilla full fat yogurt. If I don't have yogurt next time (unlikely), I may use soy milk and cider vinegar, which she also suggests.

1 2/3 c yogurt (or 1.5 c milk and 2 T cider vinegar to curdle it, or 1 2/3 c buttermilk)
2.5 c whole wheat flour
1/2 c cornmeal
1 t salt
1 t baking soda
1/2 c molasses

Grease a loaf pan with canola oil. Mix everything together until just combined. Bake at 325 degrees for 45 minutes. Like most non-butter quick breads, this will be better the next day.

Consider Yourself Cured,

Monday, April 21, 2014

Happy 13 Miles

Dear Turkey,

As a Fake Jew, I celebrate Easter by going to the store and buying all of the discounted Cadbury Eggs that I can find. I also embrace all excuses to eat a lot, regardless of cultural origin. Since we ran 13 miles yesterday, and it was a holiday, I had two excuses (like I need them). 

And I made another installment in my now-famous banana-bread series (I messed with the ingredients a little, here are mine: 2 bananas, 1/2 c honey, 1/2 c canola oil, 1 t vanilla, 1 t soda, 1 t salt, 1 t cinnamon, 1/4 c hot water, 1 3/4 c whole wheat flour, 1/4 c cocoa, bake 325 degrees for 45 mins in an oiled loaf pan):

For dessert (in case the chocolate banana bread wasn't dessert), gelato eaten outside with a mom spoon, a dad spoon, and a baby spoon:

Happy 13 Miles,

Friday, April 18, 2014

Five Minutes + Microwave = I am Ashamed

Dear Turkey,

My mom got me a bag of Rice Krispies at BJs like a year ago and I never used them. So, I brought them back to her house and helped myself to:

1) A bag of marshmallows
2) Half a stick of butter (it calls for 3T but that is obviously for lightweights)
3) Melting it in the microwave
4) Adding 6 c of Rice Krispies
5) At the last minute, stirring in one bag of mini chocolate chips (that keeps the chocolate a little bit chunky)
6) Smoosh-ing it into a pan, going to work, coming back, and: 

This picture makes you think that I am one of those dainty food bloggers that only takes one bite and then takes pictures (those are the ones with their pictures in the "about" section, and they are wearing skinny jeans). Actually, this is Rice Krispy Treat #6. That isn't even a bite, the corner just fell off. 
I know you want one now,

Tuesday, April 15, 2014


Dear Turkey,

I've been reading about smoothies with dates in the them a lot lately, and I knew that I wanted to try making some. But dates are expensive, so I had to wait until I was at my parents' house first.

I made his one after running 12 miles on Sunday. It had 1T peanut butter, 5 big dates, 1/2c vanilla soy milk, 1t cinnamon, 1 banana, and a few ice cubes. I don't usually put ice in my smoothies, but it made it like a Frappuccino, except better:

Hello: Lunch with Dates for dessert:


Friday, April 11, 2014

Hello: Unhealthy Lunch

Dear Turkey,

Today for lunch I had a peppermint hot chocolate. With a side of two salted caramel filled cupcakes:

From this place
Don't ask me what I had for breakfast,

Thursday, April 10, 2014

How do they Make Tapioca Anyway?

Dear Astute Work Friend (aka "Iwasborntobe30"),

Thank you for asking me how to make tapioca, and then finding the answer for me. As we discussed, tapioca is from the yuca plant, but here's how the magic happens:


And now we know,

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Gateau au Yaourt

Dear Pamela Druckerman,

Thank you for writing the awesome book Bringing up Bebe. I read it when my bebe was a few months old, and I've been making people read it ever since. I love learning about how other cultures view parenting (which is why I also liked this book [Mom -- I put these links on here so you can click on them and order these books from the library! just sayin.]). 

Before I read your book, I thought that I was going to hate French parenting. But I found out that I'm more of a French parent than I thought. I totally agree that cooking with toddlers is awesome, if messy; I think that my early start with cooking (especially baking) is why I love it so much as an adult. (And by early start, I mean: what's not to love about sitting in the high chair eating chocolate chips and watching your parents bake?)

Now that my youngest constituent is old enough to really "help" in the kitchen, I wanted to try your recipe for Gateau au Yaourt. First of all, I love baking with yogurt. And I love that the yogurt cup is the measuring device for this 1-2-3 cake. 

Here is your recipe: 

  • 2 six-ounce containers of plain whole-milk yogurt (use the empty containers to measure other ingredients)
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 cups sugar (or just one, depending on how sweet you like it)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • Just under 1 container of vegetable oil
  • 4 containers flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • Creme fraiche, enough to dollop (optional)


  • Preheat the oven to 375 F
  • Use vegetable oil to grease a 9-inch round cake pan or loaf pan.
  • Gently combine the yogurt, eggs, sugar, vanilla, and oil. In a separate bowl, mix the flour and baking powder. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients; mix gently until ingredients are just combined (don't overmix). You can add two containers of frozen berries, a container of chocolate chips, or any flavoring you like.
  • Bake for 35 minutes, then five minutes more if the cake doesn't pass the knife test. It should be almost crispy on the outside, but springy on the inside. Let it cool. The cake is delicious served with tea and a dollop of crème fraîche.
Here are my notes: 
- I used a 1-cup measuring cup instead of the 6-oz container and the ratios worked out fine (if I had increased it more, I would have also increased the eggs, etc)
- I used canola oil and that was fine
- Why would you want to only use one cup of sugar instead of two? Oh, because you are French
- I used 3.5 containers of flour and .5 container of cocoa
- I made 24 cupcakes (use cupcake papers), and baked them for 15 minutes
- Next time, I'm going to try it without eggs, since I don't usually have eggs
- I will also probably try it with whole wheat flour, but I know that you are too French to understand why I would possibly want to do that (actually, I really like the taste of whole wheat flour in baking; I'm not doing it because I am a health nut [obviously])

Hasta la Vi--I mean, Au Revoir,

Tuesday, April 8, 2014


Dear Other Countries,

Why do Americans only want the same old boring flavors of stuff? Now, perhaps I am being America-centric, and you guys are all sick of your exciting flavors and just want some strawberry ice cream. 

My favorite flavor of gelato is pear. Pear isn't even that weird, and we actually grow pears here, but I am shocked with food ecstasy if I find pear gelato anywhere except grom.

This is a sesame smoothie. It is delicious. And the Pocky is a much better choice for my waistline than what I had last time

Double tapioca, please
Next time, I am having a mung bean smoothie,

Monday, April 7, 2014

Amish Muffins and Amish Decaf Chai

Dear Turkey,

Greetings from Amish Country. I'm using this typewriter font in honor of the ingredients that I'm going to write about, which came from the Amish store

Turns out, the Amish make delicious whole milk yogurt. My youngest constituent calls it "cow yogurt," because there is a cow on the container. He likes to consume it in very big spoonfuls; he says, "pile of cow yogurt please." 

The Amish also make very delicious and cheap flour. I have never seen stone ground whole wheat flour for so cheap, and it's so light and fluffy, almost like pastry flour (which means it's probably not as as good for you as other whole wheat flours, but this is baking, after all, so I don't care).  

I made my favorite muffins, but replaced the flax with a cup of whole milk cow yogurt, and I used that beautiful Amish flour:

Since Amish people probably don't believe in spending $4 on a chai, I'm going to tell you about the decaf chai that I made yesterday. This is a fun chai to make with a toddler because of the tactile experience of adding the whole spices. 

I put a big mugful of soy milk in a pot and added two decaf tea bags, several cloves, part of a cinnamon stick, a pinch each of whole cardamom, cumin, and coriander. I brought it to a boil and let it stand for 5 minutes. Then I strained it into a mug and added some sugar.

Whole spices, especially cinnamon sticks, are often expensive. But not at the Amish store.

Talk to Ye Later,

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Cake Muffins

Dear Mom,

Don't even bother reading this post. Since you didn't like these muffins, I know that you won't like these muffins. But I like them, even though they taste like cake. Er..maybe it's because they taste like cake. Actually, if you think muffins, you might be disappointed, but if you think dense, chewy cupcakes for breakfast, you might feel like you're on vacation.

I followed this recipe except that I omitted the olive oil, lemon juice, and orange peel. I replaced that stuff with chocolate chips and raspberries (fruit and chocolate: one more reason that you won't like them; are we really related?). I baked them at 350 degrees for 18 minutes (makes 24):

Your loss,