One-Pot Stop: Cauliflower-Parsnip Soup

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Once the mercury dips even the tiniest bit and a cool breeze flutters across my face, I want absolutely nothing to do with the crisp, refreshing salads and tart, juicy berries of summer. All I want is something warm and cozy to snuggle up with against the chilly winds of fall. While the change in diet may be delicious, it isn’t exactly waistline-friendly.

I tend to gravitate toward greasy sandwiches, cheesy pastas, and hearty meat dishes. Anything that can be whipped up easily and can be stretched across a few meals is ok in my book. I …

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Five Ingredient Feast: Grilled Watermelon Salad

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A scorching late-August or early September day slowly fades into a balmy summer night, and the smell of grill residue lingers in the air. Your bathing suit is infinitely damp from spontaneous cannonballs in the pool and your stomach begins to growl after a full day of sun-soaked bliss. Grass clippings from the latest mow stick to your bare feet as you wander toward the picnic table in search of a snack. Dad just threw the burgers and hotdogs on the barbeque, you can hear them hissing against the hot metal grates. Your eyes dart past the cooler of ice …

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Money Mindful Meals: Eggplant Rollatini with Fresh Mozzarella and Goat Cheese

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Money saving tip of the week: Indoor herb pots.

Last week I was wandering around the produce section of Wholefoods in search of rosemary and stumbled upon a stand of bright green rosemary and basil plants. I was faced with the decision of buying a few rosemary springs in a plastic container for $1.99 or a bountiful rosemary plant for $3.99. Needless to say, I chose the rosemary plant. And I decided if I was going to be watering one plant, I might as well be watering two plants, so I decided to buy a basil plant too.

I didn’t …

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Money Mindful Meals: Zucchini Tomato Casserole

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Last month I purchased a bike in hopes that I would get some exercise, save money on gas, and have fun roaming the city of Chicago on my new toy. I have ridden my bike less than 8 miles since date of purchase, and thus have accomplished none of the above.

The single bike ride that I have taken so far was to the farmers’ market–and I hope to ride there more before the summer ends. It was because of this trip that I learned to make Zucchini Tomato Casserole.

As I was rummaging through some tomatoes at a small …

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DIY Raw Nut Butter

Image via Angela Liddo

Or, that one time I killed my mom’s vintage food processor.

Nut butter is an essential for any kitchen. I like to spread it on toast, plop it into smoothies, swirl it into baked goods, and admittedly eat it by the spoonful. The decadence is unparalleled by any plant food. Peanut butter has a certain childhood sweetness to it, while almond butter has some grown-up heft. Coconut butter is creamy and exotic, and cashew butter is a great alternative to classic nut spreads. Traditional roasted nut butter is still good for ya, but for the greatest health benefits you’ve

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In Season: Tomatillos

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I scream, you scream, we all scream for…salsa verde! Ay ay ay! I know I’m not the only one who gets excited over salsa verde whenever I go to a Mexican restaurant. Tangy, fresh, and a little zesty…how can you resist?!

If you love salsa verde, thank the “little tomatoes” called tomatillos. I was first introduced to these small, green fruits covered in paper-thin husks when I made chicken enchiladas verdes. After instantly falling in love with these cute lil’ fruits, I incorporated them into recipes other than typical Mexican dishes. Trust me, there’s nothing …

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Dorm Room Bar: Jazz in the Garden

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This is the first time I’ve ever believed a beverage could hold its own in a food fight.

See, the thing is–I’m just really not much of a beverage kinda gal. Sure, I enjoy a good thirst quencher from time to time, but on a day-to-day basis, I’m all about a simple bottle of water. Fork trumps straw any day.

It’s a fact of life, I tell ya. But every now and then, a drink so mind-blowing comes along that you find yourself at a fork in the road. Do I drink my calories, or do I eat them?

I …

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Money Mindful Meals: Baked Tortilla Chips and Roasted Garlic Guacamole

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A few weeks ago I mentioned that I would be eating less processed food and cooking basic items myself. Over the last few weeks I have baked bread, churned ice cream, and stocked my fridge with heirloom tomatoes, red onions, and leeks from the farmers’ market. I’ve found that I am cooking with a lot more vegetables and less meat, and have become addicted to Mark Bittman’s The Food Matters Cookbook. I have cooked Pasta with Rich Leek “Pesto”, Not Your Usual Steak Fajitas, and these Beet “Sandwiches” from his cookbook. This week I’m expanding my repertoire …

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Eat Under $10: Chipacado Cookies

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Dish: Oatmeal Chipacado Cookies aka vegan oatmeal avocado chocolate chip cookies
Serves: A crowd. This recipe makes 2 dozen cookies, so it’s great for your friends or to devour by yourself. Over the course of a week. Maybe less. Definitely less.
Good For: They’re cookies. They are good for any situation.
Shopping List: 1/3 cup vanilla unsweetened almond milk ($2.39), 3 tablespoons ground flax seed (36 cents), 1 cup mashed, firm avocado ($1.29), 1 cup dark brown sugar ($1.29), 2 cups old-fashioned rolled oats (72 cents), 1 cup semisweet vegan chocolate chips ($2.50), 1/2 cup chopped …

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Money Mindful Meals: Saffron and Pistachio Ice Cream

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This past week has been one heck of a week. Part of the week I was swamped with adult-stuff and the remaining part, I spent remembering what it was like to be in college again. My conclusion: college is awesome.When else do all the good parts of childhood and adulthood meet in one place?

…I can name one other “place”: Saffron and Pistachio Ice Cream. It combines the soft creaminess of  ice cream (which I used to stir into a melted, soupy cream when I was little) with sophisticated saffron and pistachios–a delicious intersection of childhood and …

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