Dec
18

Do you have a holiday morning tradition? This year I’m celebrating with Tony and his family; we’ll each be bringing a brunch dish on Christmas morning. I haven’t decided what I’ll be making yet: french toast, pancakes, mini cinnamon rolls or banana bread. I’m definitely leaning towards the homemade mini cinnamon rolls; what do you guys think?

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Dec
14

Do you love sugar cookies? I do. Except I’m more of a fan of the soft version from the store. You know the kind that’s loaded with thick frosting and simply melts in your mouth when you take a bite? Gahhh, must resist.

Since I have a few friends and family members who are gluten free, I started thinking about what kind of cookies they’d be enjoying this holiday season. I feel like there aren’t too many festive recipes out there and that’s a real bummer. I know many of my readers are gluten free or love to bake for their GF family/friends, so I thought I’d introduce a gluten free product that I’m loving.

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Dec
11

Are Christmas cookies taking over your life? They aren’t for me just yet but I’m right around the corner from a MEGA bake-a-thon and quite honestly, I’m a little frightened by how many I may consume. You know the peanut butter blossoms? MY FAVVVVV. So classic, so peanut-buttery… just give me a few and a big glass of chocolate almond milk. Or hot chocolate with whipped cream. Why must the holiday season be so tempting?

Of course, I’ve really been trying to not go overboard with the sweets. I think I say that almost every Christmas; certainly this year will be better (I hope!).

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Dec
08

I’m back in Minnesota this week enjoying some time with my Mom. She’s making me pour over  coffee right now. Outside the trees are bare, the wind is cold and well, basically it’s freezing. But alas, this is where I grew up and I’m happy to be spending time with her.

As I mentioned before, the reason for my visit was based on the fact that my body has been super crazy lately; we’ll be visiting a few doctors and a chiropractor to get things figure out. I was able to go for a 2 mile run on Saturday, but I’m eager to start running longer distances and doing yoga again (I may try today!). Fingers crossed!

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Nov
25

Oh hey, it’s me. And apparently I’m the only blogger around who hasn’t made an extensive list of EVERYTHING you need to make for Thanksgiving. Perhaps it’s because I’ve never been that into the traditional Thanksgiving meal up until a few years ago; before that my Thanksgiving consisted of Mom’s stacked enchiladas, posole, spanish rice and empanadas.

The only thing traditional we had was pumpkin pie (because I requested it of course). And who could get sick of those kind of leftovers? Not me.

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Nov
20

Thanksgiving is in a week. But instead of providing you with an extensive list of what you should absolutely make for the big T-day, I bring you stuffed peppers. Ummm with a homemade sloppy joe filling, quinoa and cheese. Sometimes I do not know why I do the things I do; they just seem delicious.

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Nov
17

There’s a part of me that says Thanksgiving isn’t really Thanksgiving unless we’re serving pumpkin pie for dessert. You may feel the same. A few years ago, I started incorporating other desserts into our menu; for both my creative pleasure and because I got the sense that not everyone is as outrageously nuts over pumpkin pie as I am. To those people: LIKE WHAT DO YOU MEAN YOU DON’T EAT IT FOR BREAKFAST THE NEXT DAY?

Brain does not compute.

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Nov
15

Hello you lovely souls. I’m sitting in a beautiful, cozy king bed writing to you from Hilton Head Health, a fitness and wellness resort in Hilton Head, SC. This past week has been so refreshing for me in more ways than I can fathom to write about. Sometimes you just can’t put into words what you feel when your heart is steady and content.  I feel beyond lucky to be invited here; the inspiration in wellness classes, new friends and being a little more vulnerable has left me with a realization that I must let go of my fears of judgement when it comes to blogging and being more personal.

My goodness can you believe AK has been cooking for a little over 3 years? I’ve written here about my life experiences, career changes, moving, relationships, friendships and my ever growing obsession with Zac Efron.

What I haven’t included is my real and constant battle with food; certainly it is the love of my life (questionable due to Tony).  I don’t want this post to become too heavy, but do want you to know that this blog will change and grow, just as any human being does. And as any relationship goes, I hope we’re in this together; that you’ll still come to AK to make my recipes because they certainly are not going away. I’ll just be writing more about this journey I’m on.

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Nov
10

Hi. How was your weekend? I have to admit that I was so incredibly lazy. I literally watched Vampire Diaries on Netflix for over four hours yesterday. Oh and did I mention that my apartment isn’t really unpacked yet from the move? Tony and I attempted to put some things away but apparently I have wayyy too many kitchen appliances and hardly enough cabinet space. I think I need to get a prop table and maybe a cabinet for extra storage. I love when I actually have a reason to visit HomeGoods!

Yeahhhh…. so basically total procrastination over here.

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Nov
02

Last Thanksgiving I was in charge of making gravy, salad and pie. Heck, if I could make the entire Thanksgiving spread I totally would. As exhausting and overwhelming as it would be, I feel as though bringing everyone together though food I made would be completely worth it. In fact, one of my favorite parts about being a cook and baker is seeing the reaction of people’s faces once they taste a dish I’ve made. Cooking for others always feels like it’s my way of letting them know that I truly care and appreciate them; there’s just something magical about it. In a sense, it’s actual gift giving; cooking and baking require thought, love and time.

I have no doubt that some of you feel the same, especially those of you who LOVE to bake.

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Oct
16

I went to Trader Joe’s yesterday around 4pm and literally almost went insane. First of all, never go to Trader Joe’s between the hours of 3-5:30pm. Trust me guys, your car will most likely be hit by red shopping carts (happened to me), children will run into with mini shopping carts, you will be blinded by a sea of Hawaiian shirts and it will take you a good hour and a half to get a total of 10 things.

After that you may hear that bell they clink at the check out lane ringing in your ears for a good 5 hours after. You may even have dreams about it (also happened to me).

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Oct
08

Last week I spent some time up in Chicago searching for an apartment. And after checking out about 15 different places, I finally found one that I absolutely adore! It’s super vintage and will fit all of my furniture which I’m pumped about. But do you want to know the absolute BEST part about my new place? It has a DISHWASHER. Hallelujah!

I’ve spent the past year washing every single dish and it was literally my nightmare. Also, this apartment building allows me to have cats, which OMG YES I’m going to be a cat lady and I can’t freaking waitttttt. I keep begging Tony to bring me to the animal humane society just so I can’t pet all the sweet little animals.

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