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Pepita Ginger Oatmeal Chewies

Hiiii!

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Happy August, lovers and friends! It’s my birthday month (weeeeeeeee but also ahhhh) which is both great and absolutely terrifying. Great because: I have fun planzzz ahead of me, August is generally beautiful in San Diego, I’ll finally be 21 (PARTY YEAHHH but actually totally kidding; all I really want is to be able to order a beer out without fear of being arrested), and just because to be quite honest, who doesn’t love birthdays? Terrifying because: I am rapidly approaching the age when the term “adult” is unavoidable (shhhh I’m still in denial), summer is almost over (?!), and school/real life commences again in a short couple of weeks. I have exciting things ahead of me though. Exciting and scary, but exciting nonetheless. I guess that’s “adulthood” (shudder).

Anyways: cookies. Thanks to these, I have molasses in my hair. Though that’s probably not surprising to hear. My mom voiced recently that she’s been craving ginger molasses cookies but I feel like that’s just too unseasonal right now so I kiiinda made my own version of that. They’re not exactly the chewy ginger cookies she was looking for, but I think it was a nice compromise. Not that these are any more summery, really (oatmeal cookies are summery, right…?), but I don’t knoooow ginger cookies just seemed too much like Christmas to make right now. These seemed more appropriate, for no reason in particular. The texture of these cookies remind me a lot of the legendary Cheese Shop oatmeal cookies (you all owe it to yourselves to go get a sandwich and cookie from here stat, assuming you live in San Diego), but with a little extra spiciness added. Plus my lil pumpkin seeds, of course! I loosely based these off of this Green Kitchen Stories recipe with a couple little changes here and there. Check it out, yo:

1 1/3 c. old fashioned oats
1/2 c. coconut oil, softened to room temperature
1/4 c. honey
2 Tbsp. molasses
1/4 c. almond meal
1/4 c. milk
1/2 c. pepitas
2 tsp. ground ginger
1/4 tsp. ground cloves
1/4 tsp. vanilla
A pinch of salt

Preheat the oven to the usual 350°. In a large bowl, mix together all the ingredients (yep, that’s it!) and plop heaping spoonfuls onto a lightly greased cookie sheet. I got 16 cookies total–8 per cookie sheet. Flatten each cookie out as much as possible with the back of a spoon until they’re all thin and spread out. Make sure they’re not too close together; they’ll spread even more when baking. Stick ’em in the oven for about 8 minutes or until the edges are lightly browned. If they spread enough to touch one another, don’t worry! Once you pull them out, use a spatula to gently separate them and shape them a little before they set. Let them cool completely on the cookie sheet before transferring them to a cooling rack. Do this carefully! They’re fragile little guys!

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These cookies are so nice and thin and spicy and chewy and oatmeal-y and lovely. A little different from my usual thick, chewy cookie preference, but still good. Change is good, right? My dad is certainly a fan–he’s already eaten 3 of them. What else is new.

Happy (almost) weekend, loves! Go get yourself some sunshine.

Love, Emily

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Almond Butter Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies

Hi lovers/friends,

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The gluten free baking adventure continues (semi-unfortunately, but c’est la vie, en fait)! Whatever. It’s making me creative I guess. So I have a confession to make. There was something strange about these cookies. They tasted awesome, but there was something a little funky about the texture. I based these off of this recipe buuut they turned out rather different than expected. Maybe it was the natural almond butter, maybe it was the sugar substitute (coconut sugar instead of brown sugar). Who knows! But anyways, they were soft and spongey rather than chewy or crumbly (as I feel cookies should be) and it was throwing me off. The more I thought about it, the more I realized: these should probably be muffins. I would even venture to say that they are destined to be muffins–they were essentially muffins masquerading as cookies. The batter was just soft and runny enough that they would have been perfect; plus, they’re not too sweet to thrive in muffin form. In other words, these cookies could have easily been eaten for breakfast. The fact that they were cookies, however, made that feel wrong. That being said, I did eat a few of these for breakfast anyways. But I will admit that it felt scandalous. So, friends, if you make these, I suggest you forget the cookie sheets and put them straight into your muffin tins. The baking time would probably be a little different, so you’re going to have to experiment and let me know what happens. Or just make them as cookies if that doesn’t bother you, that works too, of course.

1 c. almond butter
2/3 c. coconut sugar
1 1/2 tsp. vanilla
2 large eggs
2/3 c. rolled oats
1 tsp. baking soda
2/3 c. chocolate chips

Preheat the oven to 350°. Throw your oats and baking soda into a little bowl and set these aside for a bit. Next, beat your almond butter, coconut sugar, eggs and vanilla together with an electric mixer until combined, then gently stir in the oats and baking soda. Fold in the chocolate chips last. Place them 2″ or so apart on a greased cookie sheet (or like I said, make these into muffins!) and bake for about 10 minutes until the edges are just barely brown. They’ll look a little undercooked, but they’ll hold together once cooled.

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Obviously it goes without saying that you can make these with peanut butter. I’m just rather partial to almond butter. Or if you really want, you can substitute the chocolate chip for some other mix-in (although I find this a little sacrilegious, personally, but that’s just because I’m probably a certifiable chocolate addict).

Keep being wonderful. You guys are great.

Love, Emily


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Whole Wheat Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Muffins

Hi hi,

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So APPARENTLY there’s a gigantic storm a brewin’. Frankenstorm, if you will. So naturally, my first thought when faced with the harsh reality that we may not be able to leave our homes for three days straight was: I BETTER BAKE SOME THINGS ASAP. I planned on baking a bunch. I have perishables that could be baked into things, so why not use them while I still can, ya know? (There is also a chance that we might not lose power at all and that all of this baking will end up being a little unnecessary…but where’s the fun in that?) But seriously, guys! What am I supposed to eat if the power goes out and all our refrigerated things go bad? Well, muffins of course. And some brownies…but we’ll get to those later. All of my friends/roommates/their parents/my parents are freaking out about being safe in the storm and staying away from windows blah blah blah and my biggest concern is “what’s going to happen if all my food goes bad?! And WHAT AM I SUPPOSED TO DO IF THE POWER GOES OUT AND I CAN’T USE THE OVEN OR THE STOVE?” But really though. What on earth am I supposed to do. Looks like I’ll be living off of dry granola, almonds and room temperature soup for three days. It better not come to that. I will be heated.

My first order of business was to bake something that could kiiind of maybe pass as somewhat healthy, since we were going to be eating a lot of this for the next couple of days. Soooo muffins with chocolate chips? Of course. I loosely based this recipe on this one from allrecipes.com. These really aren’t that bad though! And they’re quite yummy. Just a pretty standard muffin, but it does the trick when a muffin craving strikes. Or as a hurricane survival snack, ya know.

1 1/4 c. old fashioned oats

1 c. milk

3/4 c. plain greek yogurt

1 egg

3/4 c. brown sugar (separated into 1/2 c. and 1/4 c. portions)

3/4 c. semisweet chocolate chips

1 1/4 c. whole wheat flour

4 tsp. baking powder

1/2 tsp. salt

Combine the milk and oats and set aside to sit for a little. Preheat the oven to 400 and grease/line a muffin tin. Add the egg, yogurt, and 1/2 c. of your brown sugar and mix until combined. In a separate bowl, combine your dry ingredients (flour, baking powder and salt) and combine the two mixtures together until juuust incorporated. Fill your muffin tin with the batter and sprinkle the remaining brown sugar on top. I made exactly 12 (rather full and round, but not too full) beautiful muffins. Bake for 18-25 minutes depending on your oven; the original recipe said 20-25 but at 20 minutes mine were already the teensiest bit toasty so I’d recommend you check them a little early!

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Stay safe, east coast buddies! Stay tuned for my hurricane brownies recipe. Let me tell you, it’s a good one.

Love, Emily


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Hi guyz,

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I had some leftover pumpkin to use (shocker) so I made (my version of) a half recipe of these! These cute little oatmeal cups are basically like a solid form of delicious pumpkin oatmeal. They were quite convenient to grab on the way out the door as a quick snack; I definitely nibbled on a couple of these on the subway on the way to work. Yummy. Even though I only made half a recipe, I’ll post the full one for you guys. Here ya go:

1 15 oz. can pumpkin puree

1/2 c. milk

2 eggs

1 Tbsp. baking powder

3 c. old fashioned oats

1 Tbsp. cinnamon

1/2 tsp. nutmeg

1/3 c. brown sugar

Preheat the oven to 375. Mix all the ingredients together in a large bowl and let sit. Grease or line a muffin tin and fill each muffin spot with the batter almost all the way to the top–since there’s no flour or anything, they won’t rise too much at all. Bake for 20-30 minutes until the centers are firm to the touch and the edges start to look a little browned. Let them cool for a bit before removing them from the muffin tin so they keep their shape!

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These did not take much effort to prepare, but the baking was a bit of a struggle. It took quite a while to get them to bake all the way through…initially I took them out of the oven after about 20 minutes thinking they were done and they were rather mushy. I took them out and put them back in probably 4-5 times; I probably had them baking for at least 35 minutes. They turned out fine eventually though! Patience was key.

Hope you all had a lovely weekend. Go outside and see some fall leaves, New Yorkers! They’re beautiful.

Love, Emily


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Pumpkin Appreciation Post

OKAY HI GUYS.

Hi. It’s been a while. My camera lens shattered–hence the weird blur thing I’ve got going on in the pictures, I’ve been a busy busy girl, etc. Anyways: IT’S FAAAALL, EVERYONE. I absolutely adore fall. I am such a southern California baby; any sort of weather change makes me SO EXCITED. Especially when it involves beautifully colored leaves! And big comfy sweaters! And boots, and tights, and thick socks, and tea, and apples, and crisp autumn air, and scarves, and pumpkin flavored things. I repeat. Pumpkin flavored things. What’s not to love? Come October, I search the city of New York high and low for the best pumpkin themed treats and products (FYI New Yorkers: Stand Burger on E 12th and University has FABULOUS pumpkin milkshakes, and the pumpkin scone that I’ve tried so far is definitely at Alice’s Tea Cup) and I’d say I’ve done a pretty good job with my findings.

By that, I mean that I have been going pumpkin crazy. Literally though. I think my roommates are starting to get a little annoyed by my compulsive need to purchase any product with the word “pumpkin” in it. For example, I have recently eaten/have recently made/currently have in my pantry or fridge:

-pumpkin spice coffee
-pumpkin spice rooibos tea
-pumpkin pancake mix
-pumpkin bread mix
-3 cans organic pumpkin puree
-pumpkin chocolate chunk bars–my favorite (recipe to follow)
-pumpkin spice simple syrup, for coffee! (recipe to follow)
-pumpkin spice oatmeal (recipe to follow)
-pumpkin pie smoothie (recipe to follow)

Now that I actually look at a list it does seem rather excessive…whatever. Sue me. I’m just a girl who loves pumpkin more than anything, that’s all.

Pumpkin Chocolate Chunk Bars:

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You’ll note that this picture was taken towards the end of the life of this batch of pumpkin bars…they go fast. I made this yesterday, so the fact that a 9×13″ pan of them are already in this state is saying something. Apologies for the terrible quality of the photo, the camera lens issue plus the state of the pumpkin bars when I actually got around to photographing them was not idea, but oh well. These pumpkin bars are my absolute favorite pumpkin dessert to make for my family when I go home in the fall/winter. They are much appreciated by my dad and brother especially. I really, strongly believe that you will love them just as much!

2 c. flour

1 Tbsp cinnamon

1/2 tsp. nutmeg

1/2 tsp. ground ginger

1/2 tsp. ground cloves (if you have it! I omitted)

1 tsp. baking soda

3/4 tsp. salt

1 c. (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature

1 1/4 c. sugar

1 large egg, room temperature

2 tsp. vanilla

1 c. pumpkin puree

12 oz. semisweet chocolate chunks (or chips, but preferably chunks)

Preheat the oven to 350. Grease a 9×13″ pan and set it aside. In a small bowl, mix together the dry ingredients (flour, spices, baking soda, and salt) and set this aside. In a large bowl, cream together the butter and sugar until fully combined, then add in the egg and vanilla it all together. Next, add the pumpkin puree to your butter and sugar mixture and mix well. This will look a little curdled and funky; you didn’t do anything wrong! It’ll all come together in the next step: gradually mix in the dry ingredients to the large bowl a little bit at a time, stirring constantly. Once completely combined, dump that entire bag of chocolate into the batter, mix, and pour into your prepared pan. Bake for 30-35 minutes (mine took the full 35, plus even a couple extra for the middle to set) until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Voila! There ya go.

Prepare for these to be eaten very quickly; they’re pretty wonderful.

Pumpkin Spice Syrup:

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See that mason jar of gritty-looking, thick, brown liquid? Yep, that’s what you’re making! I understand it looks highly questionable, but let me tell you. It is delicious. I adapted this recipe from this one for a pumpkin spice latte, but since I do not have an espresso machine (I wish), I just pour it in my coffee and it does the trick just the same! It’s my own version of the obscenely expensive–but equally addicting–Starbucks pumpkin spice latte. It certainly does the trick!

1 c. water

3/4 c. sugar

1 1/2 Tbsp. pumpkin puree

2 tsp. cinnamon

1/2 tsp. nutmeg

1/4 tsp. ginger

Combine all of the ingredients in a medium saucepan over medium-low heat, stirring every once in a while. Do so for about 10-15 minutes; it should thicken a little but it will do most of the thickening once you take it off the stove. Once it has cooled enough, you can strain it if you’d like to get rid of some of the gritty situation caused by the spices that will inevitably settle to the bottom, but you don’t have to! I don’t mind the spices, nor do I have a strainer or cheesecloth on hand, so I just stuck it in a mason jar in the fridge and called it a day.

Pumpkin Spice Oatmeal:

Sorry guys, no picture! This was just done on a whim since I had extra pumpkin puree that I needed to use (as was the pumpkin pie smoothie). It’s a super simple recipe. You could probably figure this out for yourself, but here ya go anyways

1/4 c. cooked steel cut oats

2 Tbsp. pumpkin puree

1 Tbsp. brown sugar

Cinnamon, Nutmeg, and Ginger to taste

Mkay guys, all you have to do is mix this all together. Maybe add some dried cranberries or whatever else you like (I did that plus some walnuts, it was delicious).

Pumpkin Pie Smoothie:

Also no picture for this one. Apologies. This was DELICIOUS. I am absolutely in love with my banana smoothies, so this pumpkin version nearly killed me. In a good way. Death by pumpkin deliciousness.

1 frozen banana, broken up into pieces

1 scoop whey protein powder

2 Tbsp. pumpkin puree

2 Tbsp. old fashioned oats

Cinnamon, nutmeg, and ginger to taste

1 c. milk

Ice (optional)

Blend this all together, and there ya go! The oats add a nice “pie crust” kind of taste; and honestly this is just all around delicious. I want one right now, but I don’t have an open can of pumpkin puree (blasphemy!). I can imagine blending some dark chocolate chips into it would make it a pretty fabulous healthy dessert…think about it…

For all of you who do not understand what the “big deal is” with all this pumpkin stuff: shame on you. Pumpkin is magical and wonderful in every way. It is the epitome of FALL FLAVOR. I will definitely be making more pumpkin things soon (pumpkin snickerdoodles have been on my radar recently, along with my eventual pumpkin apple crumb pie eventually for my Thanksgiving masterpiece), so pumpkin fans, stay tuned. It’s going to be a great fall for food.

Love, Emily


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Cinnamon Oatmeal Cookies

Bonjour mes amis,

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Okay. Just. Okay listen. I just ate three of these cookies in a row. I can’t be stopped. These are JUST SO GOOD. I want to be surrounded by the smell of them always. The apartment smells like cinnamon heaven. I can’t rave about these cookies enough. I really can’t. They were perfectly chewy without being undercooked; honestly they were just the epitome of cookie goodness.

I find that whenever I’m in a funk, the one thing that makes me feel better for the time being (guaranteed!) is cooking or baking. Put me in a kitchen with some music and some essential ingredients and for every moment that I am mixing and creaming and sifting, I am a happy, happy girl.

1/2 c. butter, softened

3/4 c. dark brown sugar

1/4 c. sugar

1 tsp. vanilla

1 egg

1/2 tsp. baking powder

1/2 tsp. baking soda

1 tsp. cinnamon

1/4 tsp. salt

1 c. flour

1/2 c. oats

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Preheat the oven to 350. Lightly grease two cookie sheets (I used coconut oil) and set them aside. Cream the butter and sugars together in a bowl until they are combined, then add your egg and vanilla and mix until they are combined as well. Next, stir in the baking powder, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon. Now, add the flour, but do this SLOWLY. You want to mix as little as possible (while still combining the ingredients of course), otherwise the cookies will be less chewy, more tough and weird. Just do a little at a time (half and half works) and mix until JUST combined. Finally you can add your oats and, again, mix only until it’s just combined enough to roll into dough. Place on a cookie sheet at least 2″ apart (I got 2 dozen cookies out of this batch exactly) and bake for 8-10 minutes until the edges are lightly brown and the middles are still a little doughy-looking. Take them out of the oven and let them sit for a few minutes to set. TRY TO RESIST THE TEMPTATION TO EAT THEM RIGHT AWAY, I promise they will still be warm in a few minutes, but they won’t fall apart. Enjoy warm, preferably with a glass of milk.

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Ugh now I want another one. I’m gonna have to make these cookies again and again and again. They are too good.

Love, Emily


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Strawberry Honey Oatmeal Bars

Hi friends!

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Let me just say. These are fabulous. So summery and yum. I love honey, and in this recipe it just adds such a nice sweetness and that distinct honey flavor UGH it’s wonderful. These were nice and easy to make and so so great. No weird ingredients or anything; with the exception of the rather surprising amount of jam, you might even have all of this stuff in your kitchen already (I did)! I found this recipe forever ago on Pastry Affair and I’ve been meaning to try it for ages. It was well worth the wait. Although if I made it again, I would have put a liiiittle less salt (maybe 1/4 tsp. instead of 1/2); I’m not a huge fan of saltiness in baked goods and I feel like personally, it was a bit too much. Also, since I didn’t have any whole wheat flour, I just used a full cup of all purpose. Honestly if you’re eating something like this, is the half a cup of whole wheat flour really going to make a difference in terms of its healthiness? I feel like probably not. Slash I just don’t really care. Dessert is dessert, right? If/when you make these bars, my word of advice would be to eat at least one while they’re still warm. It’s like a little strawberry cobbler square…I bet it would be absolutely fantastic topped with a scoop of vanilla ice cream. OH the possibilities.

6 tbsp. unsalted butter, room temperature

1/2 c. brown sugar

1 egg

1/4 c. honey

1 1/2 c. old fashioned oats

1 c. all purpose flour

1/2 tsp. baking soda

1/4 tsp. salt

1 c. strawberry jam

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Preheat the oven to 350 and lightly grease an 8×8″ pan. Cream together the butter and sugar in a large bowl. Once combined, add the egg and the honey and mix. Next, stir in the oats, flour, baking soda, and salt to make the batter. Press 3/4 of the batter into the bottom of the pan. This batter will be pretty sticky, so good luck getting it off your hands if you’re using them! (I used the back of a spoon to help me out here.) Now, spread all of the jam on top of this layer. It may strike you as a lot of jam…I was a little grossed out by the amount. When I was spreading it I felt a little like I was spreading pizza sauce, which was a little disconcerting. But it turns out fine, I assure you! Once spread, crumble the rest of the batter on top and stick it in the oven for 25-30 minutes until the top is slightly golden brown. Let it cool a couple minutes before you cut it (I know, waiting is hard) and enjoy!

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LOOK AT THAT OOEY GOOEY GOODNESS. I wish I could somehow share with you how delicious my entire house smelled after I baked these. It was pure foodie bliss.

Happy baking!

Love, Emily