Vegan 5 Ingredient Flourless Brownies

Ever since spring has hit, I’ve been super focused on getting healthy and fit. I know, I know….how cliche of me lol.

I’ve been exercising every day for at least 30 mins & eating “healthy” foods. That’s been the number one reason for changing my eating habits, but I also was motivated for another reason.

Recently, I’ve felt like the universe has been sending me signals (I’m not crazy, I promise) in the way of videos and social media content talking about animal abuse. One in particular that stood out to me was a sweet little dog named baby who was abused by a sick person.

I was torn because I sort of wished I hadn’t seen the video, but also I think it needs to be seen so these individuals can be put to justice. If you have a little bit of time, I would appreciate if you would sign this petition.

Long story short, I’ve been more conscious of the foods I eat & I want to attempt to go the vegan route which is why I wanted to share this vegan brownie recipe with you and even if you’re not trying to go vegan, it’s a super healthy recipe for getting into shape.

Vegan 5 Ingredient Flourless Brownies

Vegan 5 Ingredient Flourless Brownies

This was my first time really trying out a vegan recipe and I have to say, it took A LOT of trial and error to get it right. The original recipe which can be found here, had only three ingredients and while it might work and be easy for some people, I found that I had to make some tweaks of my own to get it to the taste that I like.

If you’re like me and love sweets, the original recipe won’t be sweet enough for you, but with a couple additions, I think it’s totally doable.

Last year, I made these brownies which are what inspired me to try out the vegan version.

Vegan 5 Ingredient Flourless Brownies

Vegan 5 Ingredient Flourless Brownies

Another thing I definitely want to stress is that before you get started, make sure you have some sort of nonstick spray or vegan butter because I didn’t and those puppies stuck like cement!

***Update: Please Read***

Given that this is my first time experimenting with vegan recipes and veganism itself, I’m still learning what is and is not considered vegan. After reading a comment from a reader, I’ve found out that my addition of honey is not correct in keeping with vegan standards, so if you want 100% vegan, just leave out the honey and thanks to Jenny, I now know that you can substitute with flax or chia “egg” which is 1 TBSP ground flax or chia and 3 TBSP of water mixed. Once left it becomes a thick gel and it great for binding. Sorry for the misinformation!

 

Without any further ado, here’s that recipe!

Vegan 5 Ingredient Flourless Brownies
Recipe Type: Dessert
An easy & cheap flourless vegan brownie recipe.
Ingredients
  • 3 medium, bananas (the recipe calls for overripe, but I found that mashing them down with a fork in a bowl did just as good)
  • 1/2 cup smooth almond butter, (or any other smooth nut butter)
  • 2 tbps – 1/4 cup cocoa powder (darker cocoa taste’s better)
  • 1/4 cup Stevia in the raw
  • 3 tbsp Honey (I’ve found that it acts as a great glue for holding the ingredients together)
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Grease a 9×9 inch glass baking dish or small cake pan or loaf pan and set aside.
  3. In the microwave (I found this to be the quickest & easiest) melt the nut butter for about a min.
  4. In a large mixing bowl, add the bananas, nut butter, cocoa powder, stevia and honey (make sure you mix well. I used my food processor to mix it together really well.)
  5. Pour the mixture into the greased dish or pan and bake for 20 minutes (depending on how fast or slow your oven cooks.)
  6. Remove from the oven and allow to cool completely before slicing into pieces.

 

Let me know if you try out this recipe and in the comments, tell me your favorite healthy dessert recipe!

 

 

 

 

Valentine's Day Red Velvet Mousse Recipe

Valentine’s day is shortly upon us and whether you celebrate a romantic relationship or a familial one, the meaning behind it remains the same. It’s about showing those that you love your affection for them.

I’ll be honest, Valentine’s day hasn’t been my favorite holiday for a while now. I can’t even count on ten fingers how many times this holiday has come around and I remain single each time. As cliche and cheesy as it may seem, I wouldn’t mind receiving flowers or candy.

Just because I don’t get these things, doesn’t mean I don’t enjoy looking at all the pretty hearts and candy displays at the stores. Red, pink and white go perfect together, in my opinion. Flowers look pretty just about any time and any where.

Whether your celebrating as a single person or as a couple, this Valentine’s day mousse recipe I have for you is the perfect little treat to indulge in on this day.

Valentine's Day Red Velvet Mousse Recipe

Valentine's Day Red Velvet Mousse Recipe

What I love about this mousse is that it’s sweet and satisfying without feeling too heavy on your stomach.

I don’t know about you but after I’ve eaten a box of chocolates, I always end up feeling stuffed and sickly. This mousse is so light and fluffy that you can barely tell you’ve just indulged in a sweet treat.

It’s the perfect after dinner treat!

Valentine's Day Red Velvet Mousse Recipe

Valentine's Day Red Velvet Mousse Recipe

This mousse is pretty easy to make, but there are two parts to it. You can top it with anything you want but I added whipped cream.

If you make this for Valentine’s Day, please come back and tell me how it went! I would love to know!

Be sure to check out all my social media icons at the top my my blog to find my social accounts! I’m regularly on twitter if you want to follow me @Echanningblog.

Valentine’s Day Red Velvet Mousse
Recipe Type: Dessert
Recipe from Mccormick.
Ingredients
  • [For Red Velvet Mousse]
  • 4 ounces semi-sweet baking chocolate, coarsely chopped
  • 2 1/4 cups heavy cream, divided
  • 1 tablespoon red food coloring
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • [For Cheesecake Filling]
  • 1 (8 oz) package 1/3 fat cream cheese, softened
  • campaignIcon
  • 1/2 c. confectioners’ sugar
  • campaignIcon
  • 1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3/4 c. heavy whipping cream, whipped
Instructions
  1. [For Red Velvet Mousse]
  2. Microwave chocolate in medium microwaveable bowl on HIGH 1 minute; stir. Microwave additional 30 seconds at a time, stirring until chocolate is smooth and melted. Add 1/4 cup cream; stir until smooth. Stir in food color and vanilla. Let stand 10 minutes to cool slightly.
  3. Beat 2 cups cream and granulated sugar in large bowl with electric mixer on medium speed until stiff peaks form. Gently stir in 1/2 of the chocolate mixture with spatula until well blended. Gently stir in remaining chocolate mixture. Spoon into dessert dishes. Cover. Refrigerate until ready to serve.
  4. [For Cheesecake Filling]
  5. For the cheesecake filling, beat cream cheese,confectioners’ sugar and vanilla in a large mixing bowl until smooth. Fold whipped cream into mixture.
  6. Fill cup or bowl with red velvet mousse as the first layer. Then add in the cheesecake filling. Then add next layer of red velvet mousse. Repeat these steps until you’ve reached the tip of dish and then add any of your favorite toppings.

 

Green Smoothies: 66 Recipes & 7-Day Detox Plan

You may or may not have noticed that I haven’t posted any cookbook reviews on here lately. That’s no mistake, I was getting kind of tired of the same old same old, and let’s be honest a lot of you probably were too. However, I do have a book I’m going to review today¬†and it’s called Green Smoothies: 66 Recipes & A 7-Day Detox Plan By Fern Green.

This smoothie book couldn’t have come at a better time for me or you because, like almost everyone else in the world, we’ve all set out to make January a fresh start which for a lot of people means eating healthy and exercising. And what could be more healthy than a smoothie?

My newest book obsession not only features tons of delicious and very, very easy smoothie recipes, but also recipes for juices, nut milks, and tonics. Great for cleanses or just as a regular addition to your healthy eating routine.

Green Smoothies: 66 Recipes & 7-Day Detox Plan

As you probably noticed in my last post, I kind of am obsessed with smoothies at the moment. They’re good for you and mostly easy to make. With this new book, Green Smoothies: 66 Recipes & A 7-Day Detox Plan, I have even more excuses to continue the obsession and even more information into different ways to add healthy items to my growing smoothie recipe collection.

Green Smoothies: 66 Recipes & 7-Day Detox Plan

As you can see in the pic above, each recipe comes with a small list of ingredients and a short instruction list because let’s be honest here, who doesn’t want a simple and easy recipe! What’s even better? These are all natural ingredients and healthy for you!

Really the only equipment you need is a juicer and/or blender. Throughout the book you will find tips and tricks for juicing and making smoothies and nut milk. There’s even a 7-day detox plan which is perfect for planning for the week ahead, which for me, I personally struggle with this.

If you like minimalistic recipes or even health plans than I would definitely recommend checking this book out.

Green Smoothies: 66 Recipes & 7-Day Detox Plan

In the pic above, is one of the smoothie’s I made from the book. It’s a Coconut Kale Smoothie and it was so delicious, especially since I love coconut so much! You can barely taste the kale in it!

Most of the recipes in this book contain 6 or less ingredients, so you won’t be shelling out too much money when buying the ingredients. I put the rest of the smoothie and blender into the fridge and it should keep until tomorrow.

If you’ve never tried smoothies or juices before, I really suggest just trying it because you might like it more than you think you would.

Thanks for reading and let me know in the comments below, have you tried smoothies or juices before and if so, which were your favorites?

 

***This is a sponsored post. I received this book from blogging for books in exchange for an honest review. All thoughts are my own and 100% my true opinion. ***

New Years Resolution Green Smoothie

A New Year calls for a New Years Resolution Smoothie Recipe!

Just like Christmas, New Years went by in a flash and I almost blinked and missed it. I’m still in denial that it’s gone. But like most things in life, life goes on, so I’m doing my due diligence and making resolutions for the new year.

I know I’m probably going to get a huge eye roll after I say this, but like most people one of my resolutions is to lose weight. It’s not that uncommon for weight gain to happen especially during the holidays. If you managed to get through unscathed, please tell me your secret.

Moving forward with the resolution of losing weight, I’ve joined a gym and started a healthy eating plan. I don’t do diets because they never work for me. Actually I’m pretty sure they don’t work for a lot of people because diets are designed to fail. Diets are short term and our goals are to keep weight off forever, so as you can see these two don’t fit well which is why I never do them.

Although, I am making a conscious effort to monitor everything that I put into my body. Once you start paying close attention to the things you put into your body, you start to notice the havoc your wreaking on it. Sugar, Carbs, Gmo’s, etc…

That’s why I’m starting to adopt a healthy eating lifestyle instead of going on a diet. It’s more attainable and better for you. My focus for my new lifestyle is plant based, healthy fats and carbs and no sugar or dairy. That’s not that hard right?

Cutting to the chase, the reason I’m doing this post is to share with you one of my favorite recipes for a healthy lifestyle. It’s a delicious green smoothie with all natural ingredients and it tastes good too!

New Years Resolution Green Smoothie

New Years Resolution Green Smoothie

New Years Resolution Green Smoothie

New Years Resolution Green Smoothie

New Years Resolution Green Smoothie

There are a lot of great reasons to love this and other smoothies. Not only are they great for your health and well being but they also help shed pounds quicker than any diet program. This particular smoothie has spinach, avocados, bananas, protein powder, and coconut milk with a few added extras to sweeten it up a bit (naturally) and also smoothes up the texture.

Avocados are loaded with heart-healthy monounsaturated fatty acids as well as having an abundance of nutrients such as vitamin k and c and it also contains more potassium than a banana. Crazy right?

You probably already know all the benefits associated with spinach but I’ll list them anyway. Of course you’ve probably heard before that spinach is high in iron, but did you know it’s packed with many other benefits such as protein, fiber, vitamins A, C, E, and K and calcium and potassium. It’s also low in fat and even lower in cholesterol! Win!

Instead of boring you with the science of it all I will finish off this post by saying that I love this recipe and don’t be put off by the green color or the fact that you’ve heard green smoothies’ taste bad because I promise you that is not the case for this smoothie. I seriously recommend giving it a try!

Thanks for reading and let me know what you think in the comments below! Also a reminder, if you want to follow me on social media check out my social media buttons at the top of my blog bar and they will take you right to them. You can find me regularly on twitter @Echanningblog.

New Years Resolution Green Smoothie
Recipe Type: Green Smoothie
Cuisine: Drink
Ingredients
  • 1 heaping scoop of whey protein
  • 1/2 avocado
  • 1 banana
  • 2 heaping tsp of vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups coconut milk
  • Ice
  • Two Handfuls of spinach
Instructions
  1. Measure out the ingredients first.
  2. Put all ingredients into a some sort of mixer (I used a blender for this recipe)
  3. Blend the ingredients on the chop setting of your mixer so that all the ice is nice a broken up.
  4. Then your done!
  5. Garnish with any toppings you want!

 

Opening The December Jingle Vox Box

As December comes to a close, I want to share with you some of the things I received in my Influenster Jingle VoxBox. It’s always nice to receive “gifts” in the mail, but it’s especially nice when it’s around Christmas time and Influenster didn’t disappoint with this Christmas themed VoxBox.

This months VoxBox was filled with everything from good things to eat, to makeup and skincare products, to cute little stuffed animated toys.

If you’re unfamiliar with what Influenster or a VoxBox is, then you’re in for a treat. Influenster is a campaign program where anyone who loves trying out new products or reviewing them can join and receive free products in what’s called a VoxBox once they’ve completed their survey questions. Influenster then matches you with the right VoxBox campaign that fits closely with the questions you’ve answered.

Opening The December Jingle Vox Box

Opening The December Jingle Vox Box

Opening The December jingle Vox Box

Opening The December Jingle Vox Box

Opening The December Jingle Vox Box

Opening The December Jingle Vox Box

Opening The December Jingle Vox Box

Opening The December Jingle Vox Box

Opening The December Jingle Vox Box

Opening The December Jingle Vox Box

Opening The December Jingle Vox Box

In this box Jingle Vox Box are….

Cetaphil Moisturizing Cream

I love this cream because it’s great for sensitive skin and it really moisturizes well. I usually apply it before bed or if my skin is feeling particularly dry, I will apply it a couple of hours before doing my makeup.

Biscoff Cookies

If you’ve ever tried traditional cookie butter, then you have an idea what this cookie tastes like. I’m not typically one to go for hard cookies but pair these with some milk and they make a nice little treat.

Ore-Ida Tater Tots

I know you’re probably wondering, “where are the cookies?”, in this box you receive a coupon for a free bag of these and all you have to do is go to the grocery store and pick it up. I haven’t picked mine up yet, but will definitely be doing so next time I’m at the store.

Hallmark Itty Bitty’s

Bascially, what these are, are these little miniature stuffed animals made after your favorite animated characters for example.. I received the Olaf one from the insanely popular Frozen films. These are so cute and the perfect gift or stocking stuffer for your little ones.

NYC City Proof 24Hr Waterproof Eyeliner

What I love about this eye liner is the fact that it’s waterproof because none of us want to have our makeup run when we get sweaty or wet. The pencil I received came in the color dark brown, which is perfect for me because black tends to look a little too harsh on my eyes.

KISS True Volume Lashes

I don’t typically wear lashes everyday because I feel like I should save them for special occasions, but I did try the ones that came in my VoxBox today and I was really happy with how natural they looked. Mine were called chic and they blended in perfectly with my natural lashes.

KISS Strip Lash Adhesive With Aloe

There’s two good things about this glue. First, is the fact that it’s made with aloe and prevents irritation which is obviously great. Second is that the glue holds the lashes very well. However, the bad thing about this glue is that it’s black and messy and gets all over everything. I guess I squeezed the tube a little too hard or something, because it shot out of the tube and got all over my clothes and me and stained my clothes black.

Pure Ice Nail Polish

I’ve tried pure ice nail polishes in the past and I love their color ranges. The only problem I’ve found with these polishes is that they don’t last very long. I received the color french kiss which you can tell by the photo above is a dark blue color. I applied this nail polish and the next day it started chipping. That really bugs me!

Don’t forget to check out Influenster and let me know if you’ve tried these products below or if you liked them or not!

 

***I received these products complimentary from Influenster for testing purposes. All thoughts and opinions given are completely honest and my own.***

 

3 Christmas Cookie Ideas For The Holidays

Wow! Christmas is LITERALLY right around the corner & that means it’s time for Christmas cookies!

If you’re like me and this year went by to fast for you, then you’re probably just as shocked as me to know that Christmas will be here soon. Which means less time to shop and less time in general for other things. Cookie swapping is a nice tradition that a lot of us partake in this time of year and it’s a nice way of saying I appreciate you.

I give out cookies to people I love and care about regardless of a cookie swap because I want to show them how much they mean to me and nothing is more genuine, from me, than a freshly baked cookie because I pour my heart into baking. I carefully plan out what I’m going to make and for who and I spend hours, sweating it out in a hot kitchen trying to make the perfect treat.

I know I’m probably not the first person to share their cookie recipe since the start of this holiday season, but I thought I would put my two cents in as well!

3 Christmas Cookie Ideas For The Holidays

3 Christmas Cookie Ideas For The Holidays

3 Christmas Cookie Ideas For The Holidays

For the first cookie I went with an Iced Star Sugar cookie, which was a pretty obvious choice given that iced sugar cookies are pretty popular this time of year. Actually, this was supposed to be a snowflake instead of a star, but the cookie cutter I used obviously didn’t produce the results I’d hoped for. ūüė¶

For the second cookie, I used my favorite holiday drink as the foundation for this cookie. Egg nog is not your typical fave holiday drink and actually A LOT of people really don’t like it, however I really do. It’s definitely an indulgent drink and in my opinion is not meant to be drunk regularly. If you don’t like egg nog, then following along the lines of holiday drinks, you could do the traditional hot cocoa or and apple cider version.

Last but not least is the Salted Caramel cookie. This one was definitely my favorite and you can never go wrong with a dessert that has the words salted and caramel in it’s name. Fun fact (if you didn’t already know) : salt brings out the sweetness of a dessert really well, so even though I already had salted caramel in these cookies I added a little extra sea salt on top just to really bring it home.

3 Christmas Cookie Ideas For The Holidays

Iced Sugar Cookie Recipe

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup vegetable shortening

  • 1 cup white sugar

  • 1/4 cup milk

  • 2 eggs

  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 3 cups confectioners’ sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract, or more to taste
  • 2 tablespoons milk, or as needed

Directions:

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
  • Beat vegetable shortening, white sugar, 1/4 cup milk, eggs, and 1 teaspoon vanilla extract together in a bowl. Whisk flour, salt, and baking soda in a separate bowl. Slowly beat flour mixture into shortening mixture to make a smooth dough.
  • Roll dough out 1/4-inch thick on a floured work surface and cut into shapes. Arrange cookies on baking sheets.
  • Bake in the preheated oven until cookies are firm, about 10 minutes. Let cool.
  • Beat butter, confectioners’ sugar, 1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract, and 2 tablespoons milk in a bowl with an electric mixer on high speed until frosting is spreadable and slightly fluffy. You can also add any food coloring you want. Frost cooled cookies.
Source: All Recipes

3 Christmas Cookie Ideas For The Holidays

Egg Nog Cookies Recipe

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/4 cups white sugar

  • 3/4 cup butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup eggnog
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Directions:

  • Preheat oven to 300 degrees F (150 degrees C).
  • Combine flour, baking powder, cinnamon and nutmeg.
  • Cream sugar and butter until light. Add eggnog, vanilla, and egg yolks; beat at medium speed with mixer until smooth. Add flour mixture and beat at low speed until just combined. Do not overmix.
  • Drop by teaspoonfuls onto ungreased cookie sheet 1 inch apart. Sprinkle lightly with nutmeg. Bake 20 to 23 minutes until bottoms turn light brown.
  • *Optional – I added green sprinkles for a festive little touch
Source: All Recipes

3 Christmas Cookie Ideas For The Holidays

Salted Caramel Cookies Recipe

Ingredients:

  • 3 cups all-purpose flour

  • 1 teaspoon baking soda

  • 1 teaspoon coarse salt

  • 1 3/4 cups brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup white sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 cups chocolate chips
  • 18 unwrapped caramel candies (such as Werther’s¬ģ), each cut into 6 pieces

Directions:

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
  • Whisk flour, baking soda, and salt together in a bowl.
  • Beat brown sugar, butter, and white sugar together in a bowl using an electric mixer until creamy. Beat eggs, 1 at a time, into butter mixture until blended; beat in vanilla extract. Stir flour mixture into butter mixture until dough is just combined; fold in chocolate chips.
  • Divide dough into thirty six 2 tablespoon-size balls; arrange on a baking sheet. Press 3 caramel pieces into each dough ball.
  • Bake in the preheated oven until edges are golden brown, 13 to 15 minutes. Transfer cookies to a wire rack to cool.
  • *Optional – Sprinkle a dash of sea salt
Source: All Recipes

I hope you all have a Merry Christmas and let me know below if you participate in a cookie swap and if so, what is your go to cookie?

Christmas Decorating & Gingerbread Cookies/ Hot Chocolate Recipes

Hey guys!

How was your weekend?

Mine was great! My mom came over and visited which was the best thing EVER because I live so far from her and hardly ever get to see her. Not only that, but she also decided to help me put up my Christmas decorations and we did some other Christmasy related things as well.

I know, I know…….it’s only November and we haven’t even celebrated Thanksgiving yet, but I couldn’t wait til Dec. 1.. I want more than a couple of weeks to enjoy Christmas!!!

I love all the modern/ chic Christmas themed trees a lot of people are doing this year, but for me personally, it’s all about tradition. I like a traditional themed decor set up with your greens, reds and golds.

(I also want to apologize for the quality of the photos. Still stuck using my iphone camera at the moment)

 

Christmas Pic 2

Starting in my bedroom, I kept with the red, green and gold theme and decided to go minimal with decorations on the mantle and keep the focus on the gorgeous Merry Christmas banner I got from an Etsy shop. I’m really sorry to the owner, I couldn’t remember the name of the shop, but if you go on to Etsy and type in Christmas banner into the search you’ll probably find it.

The silver glittered deer is from Target a year ago and the for the Christmas themed print, I just went onto Pinterest and printed off a cute little Christmas quote I found and put it in a black frame I already had.

Christmas Decor 1

Also in my bedroom, on my dresser, I have a white mini Christmas tree I got a couple of years ago and it has a mixture of green, white, and red balls that I also got from Target.

The noel santa sign I’ve had for a couple of years and I can’t really remember where I got it.

Christmas Decor 5

(Ok, I want to mention that I have a fireplace in my bedroom and living room and they look identical so I didn’t want you to get confused.)

Now, in the living room on my fireplace, I have my three santa stocking holders that I’ve had for a few years and the stockings I think came from Target except for the middle one.

The other little Christmas knick knacks in the background have been in my Christmas storage box for years, so I don’t really remember where I got them.

Christmas Decor 4 - edited

Finally, my FAVORITE part!! My Christmas tree!! Ok, so I know it probably looks much prettier and more put together to have a themed tree with color coordinated balls and decorations, but I’m really traditional when it comes to a tree as well, so I went with a classic tree. Not only is it tradition for me, but I’m really sentimental about this one too.

Every single ornament and balls has a significant meaning and memory attached to it. From my birthday, to my first Christmas, to a family trip, this tree holds so many wonderful memories that I couldn’t imagine my tree being any other way.

Probably the only new thing on this tree is the tree skirt, because something happened to my other one and I had to go out and buy this one.

Fun little fact: every year, we always go pick out one new ornament to place on the tree.

Christmas Decor 7

These are not just some random mice I threw in here. These are my absolute favorite Christmas odd and ends that I love discovering every year when I open up my Christmas storage container.

My mother has held onto these for so many years now, and there origin is a mystery to me, but I adore them!

Christmas Pic 8 - edited

On to the best part of the season!! Cookies!!!

My mom and I decided since we were feeling all festive, we would bake some cookies and there is nothing more that I love this time of year than gingerbread cookies!

These cookies we so soft and chewy and full of deliciousness….you could feel the warmth of the season every time you bit into them.

*Side note* – I may have been inspired to make these after using the Lush Yog Nog soap.

 

 

Gingerbread Cookies
Recipe Type: Dessert
Ingredients
  • 6 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 tbsp baking powder
  • 1 tbsp ground ginger
  • 1 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1 tsp ground cloves
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 cup shortening, melted and cooled slightly
  • 1 cup of molasses
  • 1 cup of packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
Instructions
  1. Sift together the flour, baking powder, ginger, nutmeg, cloves, and cinnamon; set aside.
  2. In a medium bowl, mix together the shortening, molasses, brown sugar, water, egg, and vanilla until smooth.
  3. Gradually stir in the dry ingredients, until they are completely absorbed.
  4. Divide dough into 3 pieces, pat down to 1 1/2 inch thickness, wrap in plastic wrap, and refrigerate for at least 3 hours.
  5. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  6. On a lightly floured surface, roll the dough out to 1/4 inch thickness.
  7. Cut into desired shapes with cookie cutters.
  8. Place cookies 2 inches apart onto an ungreased baking sheet.
  9. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes ( It may be sooner depending on how fast your oven cooks, my cook in 7 minutes).
  10. When the cookies are done, they will look dry, but should still be soft to the touch,
  11. Make sure to let completely cool before icing.

 

Christmas Pic 7 - edited

This hot chocolate is the perfect thing to warm you up and delight your taste buds when it’s nippy out.

I added a Hershey’s chocolate candy cane for an extra Christmasy touch. Yum, Yum YUM!!!

Ingredients:

1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder

3/4 cup white sugar

a pinch of salt

1/3 cup boiling water

3 1/2 cups milk

3/4 tsp vanilla extract

1/2 cup half and half cream

Directions:

Combine the cocoa, sugar, and pinch of salt in a saucepan. Blend in the boiling water. Bring this mixture to an easy boil while you stir. Simmer and stir for about 2 minutes. Watch that it doesn’t scorch. Stir in 3 1/2 cups milk and heat until very hot, but do not boil!!

Remove from heat and add vanilla extract. Divide between 4 mugs. Add the cream to the mugs of cocoa to cool it to drinking temperature. For a last touch, I added whipped cream and a sprinkle of cinnamon, but you can add any topping you want such as marshmallows.

Enjoy!!

 

Thanks for reading!! Happy Holidays!! Tell me your favorite Christmas tradition below!!

 

Olympia Provisions: American Charcuterie (Cookbook Review)

Hey guys!

I’ve got another cookbook to review for you today and the obsession continues….

My newest cookbook is slightly different from the others for two reasons. 1. The difficulty level on this one is slightly more advanced. 2. This one is mainly about meats and the process of preserving them, plus there’s no desserts whatsoever in this book, which if you know me, you know I love desserts and that makes me a little sad.

Olympia 2

I have to point out the fact that this book is gorgeous. Even the front cover is stunning. Each page of this book is filled with yummy recipes and beautiful pictures.

If you’re like me and you are an amateur in the kitchen, then this book is gonna be super advanced for you. Especially if your knowledge of slicing and preparing meats is almost non existent. Still, it’s worth checking out because the recipes are so delicious, even if you managed to mess up a little bit with the meat, you’re still gonna be coming out with a tasty concoction.

Also, Elias Cairo and Meredith Erickson (the authors of this book) guide you step by step with instructions to everything from meat making safety tips, charcuterie tools and equipment to how to scale using percentage charts and information about nitrate & nitrite. And of course we also get a little back story on who they are and how they started.

Olympia 3

But enough about that. Let’s get on with the recipes shall we?

Here are some of my favorites.

Duck Confit & Rillettes

Olympia 4

 

Quail En Gelee

Olympia 5

Sweet Cream Biscuits

Olympia 9

Parsley Pecorino Sausage

Olympia 6

Winter Density Romaine W Anchovy Vinigarette

Olympia 11

Rabbit Ballotine

Olympia 10

Hand Pies

Olympia 13

Op's Frankfurter Specials

Olympia 7

This was hands down my favorite page out of the entire book. I love a good hot dog but these here are not just any old regular hot dog.

There are 19 different hot dog varieties to try and each one sounds and looks more delicious than the last.

Op’s Frankfurter Specials:

  1. Reuben
  2. Hound
  3. Greek
  4. Etouffee
  5. Mac n cheese
  6. Chile Relleno
  7. Sonoran
  8. Broccoli and cheese
  9. Sweet and Sour
  10. Rapini
  11. Poutine
  12. Pickled Egg Salad
  13. Caesar
  14. Portland
  15. Breakfast
  16. Chicken Fried
  17. Creamed Corn
  18. Philly Cheese Dog
  19. Enchilada

Cherry, Basil, & Chevre Crostini

Olympia 12

 

This book is a meat lover’s dream. The recipes as well as the photos look and sound mouth watering and there’s plenty to enjoy in this cookbook/autobiography.

Interested in buying this book? Click here.

Again thank you for reading my review of my latest cookbook and leave me a comment below telling me your first impression of this cookbook.

Xo Echanning 3

 

***This is a sponsored post. I received this book from blogging for books in exchange for an honest review. All thoughts and opinions are completely my own.***

 

 

Lush Christmas Favorites!

Happy Holidays guys!

Ok, so I know it’s a little early for that, but to be honest, I probably won’t be posting when it’s actually Thanksgiving and Christmas, so I thought I would go ahead tell you now.

While everyone else was in a not so great mood yesterday, I was in a really great mood. That’s how it usually happens. So, in the spirit of being in a great mood, I thought I would share with you some Lush goodies that arrived yesterday and if you’re a christmas lover like me, then you’re gonna love this!

Ok, so yesterday was one of those days where it was cold and rainy, but I loved it! I put on my comfiest sweater and leggings and headed out to town. First stop Trader Joe’s where I picked up a couple of healthy items (but who cares about that, am I right?) and something not so healthy. What I’m talking about ladies and gentlemen, is the very famous Trader Joe’s Cookie Butter. But not just any old cookie butter, I’m talking delicious and completely addicting cookies n’ creme cookie butter. I need to have a serious talk with the person who came up with this.

So basically, cookie’s n’ creme is a bunch of oreos mashed up and ground into cookie butter form with that delicious creme. Well, technically they call it an cocoa biscuit, but let’s face it’s oreos. Ok, enough about the cookies and creme.

The next place I headed was Michael’s because I’m obsessed with that store and they have pretty much anything you could ever want in there. Speaking of having everything you could ever want, to my surprise they had a can of rose gold spray paint. Yes, I said ROSE GOLD SPRAY PAINT!!! You know I had to pick up a can too. I pretty much went on a rose gold spray paint spree on all my little trinkets and knick knacks and I loved every second of it!!

I could tell you where I went after that, but I don’t want to bore you because it’s just a bunch of boring adult stuff….i.e. bills etc…

When I finally arrived home, I was so happy to see that the UPS guy had stopped by and dropped off my Lush package that I’ve been waiting on forever. I immediately went inside and opened it up.

 

Christmas Lush pic 3

As you can see I got 4 products from Lushs’ christmas range and I displayed them not so subtly in front of some of my christmas decor which I’m going to do a post on later this month or the first of next month. Lush has so many more christmas products but I only chose 4 of them because, well it just so dam expensive. I wanted to buy so many of them and some of the ones I really wanted we’re out of stock, so I was so sad but I am happy with the ones that I did get.

Christmas Lush- Snow Fairy

First product I want to talk about is their Snow Fairy Shower Gel. If you’re ¬†familiar with this product you know that it’s limited edition and only comes around once a year. I’ve heard of the hype for this product and when I was deciding on which product to try, I thought I would give this one a try. As a gel, I think it does a great job, however, I don’t like the smell too much. I know a lot of people love this scent, but to me it smelled a little bit like that bubblegum cough medicine you used to get as a child or pepto bismol. If you like the smell of medicine, then you won’t see a problem with this, I do not.

Christmas Lush - Snow Angel

Next is the Snow Angel Bath Melt. I think this is my first time trying a bath melt. It’s not that I don’t like bath melts, I just usually gravitate towards the bath bombs and bubble bars. This bath melt is infused with cocoa butter, rose, benzoin, and cassie absolute. I love the smell because it reminds me of marzipan. It such a lovely scent and I can’t wait to try it.

Christmas Lush - Cinders

I love, love, love this bath bomb!!!! It has one of my FAVORITE christmas scents……cinnamon. It’s such a nice smell and it feels like you’ve walked into a winter wonderland. I actually used this last night in the bath and it made my bath so cozy and delicious smelling! It turned my water a pretty gold color and it was weird because as I sunk into the water, I thought I heard a crackling noise and I was right! It was the “cinders” in the cinders bath bomb. It kind of sounded like how pop rocks sound in your mouth. It comes as no surprise, since I love the scent so much, that this bath bomb is infused with cinnamon leaf oil. I definitely recommend trying this before the christmas season is over.

Christmas Lush - Yog nog soap

Last, but definitely not least, is the yog nog soap. I had a hard time deciding whether to get the soap or the bath bomb because they have the yog nog version for both, but I ended up choosing the soap because I thought, well I already have enough bath bombs as it is and the soap will last me longer. There’s a very close race between this soap and the cinders bath bomb because they both smell so delicious and look amazing and remind me of christmas. Keeping with the christmas theme, the yog nog soap smelled like gingerbread cookies. YUM!!!! When I used it in the bath I felt like I had just been transported into a christmas bakery in a christmas village, it was so good!! This soap is infused with scents of clove bud and ylang ylang essential oils. As far as the soap, it made my skin feel really hydrated and moisturized. Again, another product I would recommend you trying before the christmas season is over.

Trader Joe's 2

Ok, so this isn’t a lush product, but I had to show that cookies n’ creme cookie butter I was talking about before. Doesn’t it look dreamy?!?? I don’t know what I love more, Trader Joe’s or Trader Joe’s christmas shopping bags. Also, the people who worked there were so lovely and nice.

Now that you’ve seen some of my favorites, tell me what yours are or tell me what you’ve got going on for Thanksgiving! Thanks as always for reading and I look forward to reading your comments below!!!

 

             Products Mentioned:

              Snow Fairy Shower Gel

             Snow Angel Bath Melt

           Cinders Bath Bomb

         Yog Nog Soap

¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬†Trader Joe’s Cookies N’ Creme

Xo Echanning 3

Citrus: Sweet & Savory Sun-Kissed Recipes (A Cookbook Review)

I may not blog on a weekly basis anymore, but one thing you can be sure of is there will always be new cookbook reviews on Echanning. I received my current one on my doorstep a couple of days ago and I soon as I opened the box, I devoured each and every recipe on each and every page. As you can probably already tell by the title, these recipes are all citrus themed and while I don’t think citrus is in season right now (I could be wrong), I still think there are plenty of delicious recipes that you could try out this fall and winter.

Citrus- Sweet& Savory Sun-Kissed Recipes

I don’t think I’ve ever met a citrus-y food that I didn’t like. Citrus desserts happen to be my favorite type of desserts. I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE lemon merengue and key lime pie. Those are my Achilles’ heels. So, you know when I opened to page 51 of this book and saw a recipe for key lime pie, I was jumping for joy!

What I especially love about this book, is that the ingredient list is small and the ingredients aren’t that hard to find and you could actually pick up most of the ingredients at any of your local grocery stores.

I could try and describe all the recipes in detail to you, but I’m sure you would much rather see some of the recipes for yourself, right?

Below are some of my favorites. You also may notice as you look through my photos that I sort of picked favorites, the favorites being desserts over savory food. Hope you enjoy!!!

 

Lemons!!

Citrus 20

Ok so, I know this isn’t a recipe but this photo of lemons was too beautiful not to add.

Burnt Sugar Meyer Lemon Tart

Citrus 23

Blueberry Ricotta Pancakes W Lemon Cream

Citrus 21

Lemon Gateau

Citrus 22

 

Limoncello

Citrus 24

Tropical Granola W Candied Lime

Citrus 25

Turkish Yogurt Cake W Lime Syrup & Pistachios

Citrus 26

Lime & Chile Salted Almonds

Citrus 27

Cara Cara & Blood Orange Salad W Ricotta Salata

Citrus 28

Orange & Rosemary Polenta Cake

Citrus 38

Orange Blossom Macarons

Citrus 29

Valencia Orange Bread & Butter Pudding

Citrus 30

Breakfast Crepes W Candied Tangerines

Citrus 31

Candied Chocolate Mandarins

Citrus 32

Grapefruit & Gin Marmalade

Citrus 33

Dark Chocolate Waffles W Maple Kumquats

Citrus 34

Ok, so now that you’ve seen some of my favorites, tell me below what your favorite citrus foods are. If you want to know where you can purchase this cookbook, click this link.

As always, Thanks for reading!

***This is a sponsored post. I received this book from blogging for books in exchange for an honest review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.***