Thinking out loud #2

Confession: I started compiling randomness for this post days ago already in anticipation for another round of Thinking out loud. It’s late already as I’m finally able to use the internet so let’s dive straight into the randomness. Not before saying thanks to our host Amanda, though: Thank you, girl!

Thinking-Out-Loud

1. My family’s taking turns in where we gather to celebrate Christmas. This year we’ll be at my grandparents’ again. If it’s the same for you here’s a reminder of what to expect and get excited already:

Source
Source

2. Oh, and if in addition you’re single during the holidays? Even better (apparently).  [Note Julie from PB Fingers making an appearance!]

3. How about fried cookie dough balls for dinner? It might have actually happened around here on Thursday night. I’d prepared another batch of dough for Traumstücke and stuck it into my parents’ fridge to chill when leaving for an appointment. My mum wasn’t at home when my dad returned from work in the evening ravenous so he figured she’d left him dinner in the fridge. Seeing as my mum had prepared a giant amount of seitan the days before he assumed that would be what was in the mixing bowl. Luckily, he somehow got distracted from actually diving into the cookie dough bowl. Gingerbread-flavoured seitan? Interesting …

Träumchen

4. Call me a moon watcher. No matter how often I’ve seen it already full moon draws me in each time anew. We’ve had it for the past few days and it already had  me almost stumble over a rock lying on the side of the path leading up to our house. Just because I had my head in the stars was watching the moon. But wouldn’t you take every peek at it you can get, too?

5. That being said: Any ideas on how to use this little gem I picked up at the market last week?

Little_squash

6. While I’d noticed the days before that next Friday would be the 13th I’d completely forgotten upon waking up the day itself. It wasn’t until turning on the radio in the car that I was reminded of the fact again. [Side note: Does anybody else get just a little annoyed by radio presenters needing to stress these kind of ‘special’ days just about every 30 minutes? Why not just celebrate another occasion to say TGIF!?]

7.  It’s almost too simple to call it a recipe. But I figured I’d include the Celeriac Apple Stew/Mash mentioned in this week’s WIAW post for a little strange but good action. Given it’s randomness I hadn’t originally intented to post so my measurements aren’t totally exact. Aren’t recipes just guidelines in anyway?  Preparation: Sauté the onion in a small pot. Add celeriac and almond milk, cook until soft. Blend mixing in the spices. Return to the stove and add kale and mushrooms.  Let cook until kale is wilted and mushrooms are soft. Stir in apple sauce, kidney beans and chopped apple to warm through. I topped mine with a dollop of soy yogurt.

Apple_Celeriac

  • ¼ small celeriac root
  • ¼ small onion, chopped
  • ¼ cup almond milk
  • 1 handful of kale, sliced into thin strips
  • 2 mushrooms, sliced
  • ¼ cup of kidney beans
  • ¼ tsp smoked paprika
  • ¼ tsp hot curry powder
  • 2 tbsps of unsweetened applesauce
  • ½ small sweet apple, chopped

8. Not only am I a produce over-buyer but I get special produce anxiety, too. Never heard of that? Maybe because I made the term up. Do you ever buy a certain rare ingredient all excited to use it – only to end up letting it sit around for ages. At worst going bad just because you can’t decide on the one special enough recipe to use it in? That is what I’m calling special produce anxiety.

9. Only two more ‘mandatory’ Christmas gifts to buy! By Monday I was still unsure I’d finish my shopping in time [and announcing this might be knocking on wood …] but now that I’ve even gotten the hardest to buy for person on my list – my dad – covered I feel more relaxed. Fingers crossed my orders will arrive in time!

[Edited to add Rafflecopter was cheating on me so my giveaway is still open today. Sorry!]

10. Stealing a great idea from our host Amanda I added orange zest to my oat bran today. If only it was possible to get all of it from the grater … Any tips?

Zest

And with that I’m off to work again eating said breakfast while typing an article. Wherever you are right now:

Happy Thursday!

Happiness inducing today: A friend doing me a favour.

Share some randomness with me:

Who’s the hardest person to buy for in your family? Did you already find a gift for that person this year?

Holiday buddies

A family weekend [+ a foodie giveaway]

Happy Monday!

Looking back at the past days I honestly have to assume somebody’s pushing the fast-forward button when it comes to the weekend and slow-motion on weekdays. The past days were packed with activities but I still didn’t get to check off all [fun and not-so-fun] points on my weekend to-do list and now it’s already back to the grind again. Oh well.

No matter how manic our Mondays might be, however, there’s always the weekend to look back at some marvelousness. And if that doesn’t help to cheer you up think of it this way: we’re already well on our way to another weekend ;).

MiMM_new

If you’ve been reading any of my WIAW posts before you might know I’m a fan of spotting themes or patterns in what I’ve eaten. It’s no different in other parts of life so I’m happy to say my last weekend followed an overal theme, too. And the best – in my opinion – at that, too. Just the way I’d hoped for when moving back in with my parents the past days were filled with family activites – and other kinds of families 🙂 …

Family movie night

Okay, so it was just my mum and me watching the movie. But – at the risk of sounding biased – I’m pretty sure it wasn’t my dad’s kind of movie in anway. Don’t you agree?

Movie night with mum

We watched Stuck in Love and I highly recommend it. I’d actually never heard of the movie before and planned on getting Love, Actually. But when I spotted this one at the rental store it just wanted to come along and so it did. The beginning made my mum laugh out loud and ask what kind of movie I’d picked. Luckily, she’ll watch pretty much anything and it ended up being a great one. Perfect for a mum-and-daughter or single girl movie night. With a side of my favourite snacks: Erdnussflips. I’ve mentioned these before and though my mum once claimed she and my dad didn’t enjoy them much they’ve somehow become a staple since I moved in. Sweet coincidence?!

Family [of] holiday buddies

Holiday buddies

Did I mention my mum’s unusual style of decorating yet? While our house sadly isn’t nearly as festively decorated as in past years my mum puts up cute little figurines, ornaments and vases filled with flower arrangements all year. Mostly seasonal or all-year-round suitable ones so let’s agree that the bunny is there to help the dwarf cheer up the slightly unhappily looking Santa, okay?

Family game nights

Something that hadn’t happened in ages anymore. My mum claims she didn’t enjoy them so I’d given up suggesting to play board games – when my dad suddenly asked if I’d like to because he had some more time this weekend. Needless to say I was game!

Cafe International

Seeing how long we hadn’t been playing this game anymore my parents had completely forgotten the rules. It was my job to keep my eyes on them to prevent [most] cheating but some slipped my view. Do anybody else’s parents keep helping each other while you’re playing on your own? Not fair.

Family[-approved] stickers

A good part of my weekend was once more spent writing [long-overdue] letters. Accompanied by a new toffee-scented candle it was most definitely happiness-inducing.

Seasonal stickers

What can I say? I’m five at heart and get excited at the sight of cute little stickers like these ones. But honestly: Wouldn’t you prefer to receive letters covered in reindeers, santas and other holiday-themed ornaments, too? White paper is a sad sight that should only be left for business letters.

holiday-themed

For the family of foodies

It’s time to say sorry. If you read my review of Happy Herbivore Light & Lean you might remember me mentioning a giveaway coming up. And it only deemed on my yesterday that I’d promised to have it up last week already. So: sorry! No more delaying now, though.

HH Light & Lean

For a chance to win your own copy become a member of the family of Happy Herbivore Light & Lean owners leave a comment through the Rafflecopter widget [link below] telling me why you’d like to win the book. The giveaway is open to US and Canadian readers only [sorry!].

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Happiness inducing today: My dad approving of the [vegan] family dinner I’d prepared.

Does your family still have game nights when you meet? Which are your favourite games?

What were some of the last great [romantic] movies you watched?

Are you a fan of decorating all year round or just seasonally for the holidays?

A naturally sweet celebration [Blogiversary giveaway]

Thank you so much for all of your sweet comments and wishes on my first blogiversary! It’s been an amazing time getting to know all of you so here’s to more months and years to come!

So yesterday was all about the most important part of blogging: the community. You! Today is about something else that’s awesome about blogging …

Bread pudding

Food! The second best aspect of blogging was and is broadening my palate with an amazing range of new foods – and talking about them obviously. New foods to me at least. I might have walked past it at the store a million times without noticing [sorry, almond butter]. At other times I had been reading about those foods on blogs forever yet had the hardest time ever finding them. One of those ingredients would be stevia. When I first heard of it I wouldn’t believe people saying it was an all-natural alternative to sugar that tasted just like the real deal. Memories of the artifical sweetener my grandma used for her tea came up … brrrr. Let’s not even get there … thanks, I’ll take my tea unsweetened. Nothing will ever stop my sweet tooth from raging, though, so I was super excited when NuNaturals offered to send me some of their products to try. Only when I picked up the package I was surprised to be spoiled with sweetness.

Stevia

And because a birthday calls for a party that’s what we’re going to have today. Come on, use your imagination. It’s the day between two awesome blogger parties [Marvelous in my Monday and What I ate Wednesday] which I naturally can’t and don’t want to rival. But there are cake and presents nonetheless. Are you in? Great!

Bread pudding

Okay, about that cake … I’m admittedly not the hugest fan of it. Give me ice cream any day but keep the cake – unless we’re talking ice cream cake. But I digress … So no cake but with my previous savoury bread pudding in mind I created a sweet version perfect for dessert, as a snack or even breakfast because – you guesse it! –  there’s no added sugar in it.

Sweet Blueberry Apple Bread Pudding

  • ¼ cup fresh blueberries
  • ½ medium apple, chopped into bite-sized pieces
  • 3.5 oz silken tofu à blend with three drops each NuNaturals Vanilla and Orange liquid stevia [or use more Vanilla stevia and add 1/2 tsp orange zest]
  • ½ tsp cinnamon
  • ¼ tsp ground ginger
  • Pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
  • ½ seedy whole-wheat roll, stale or toasted [microwave trick]
  1. Blend the silken tofu with the stevia and spices.
  2. Mix blueberries, apples and silken tofu with about half of the toasted bread cubes.
  3. Pour mixture into a single-serving casserole dish and top with the remaining bread cubes.
  4. Bake in the preheated oven for about 20 minutes at 350 °F until the top looks slighty puffy.
  5. Serve as is or – recommended – with your favourite nut butter.

Sweet

I know you might be thinking “Okay, but where are the presents?!” so there you go. When I told NuNaturals about my blogiversary they offered to let me give four of you one bottle of each of the Lemon, Vanilla Stevia and Peppermint Flavored Stevia Liquids plus a 50pkt. box of their NuStevia White Stevia Powder packets. There are four ways to enter and the giveway will run until next Tuesday. It is open worldwide but NuNaturals can’t ship to PO boxes. Good luck!

Click on the link below to enter! The mandatory entry is to leave a comment telling me your favourite uses for NuNaturals stevia. You need to confirm you commented through the widget.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

But even if you don’t win you can still use the they can receive discounts on all orders placed via NuNaturals’ website by using my discount code. Just enter the DISCOUNT CODE ;  BLG1213  when you get to the checkout page and you’ll receive – 15% DISCOUNT on your entire order. This discount remains effective until  December 31, 2013. So birthday presents for everybody, right :)?!

Disclaimer: While NuNaturals sent me their products free of charge all opinions in this post are my own and I wasn’t compensated by the company in any way.

 

Happiness inducing today: Reading all of your comments on yesterday’s post. I knoow … I’ll stop gushing, promise!

Tell me: Cake or ice cream or …? Which flavour?

Have you ever had sweet bread pudding?

What made you happy today?