Sunday, November 13, 2011

Easy, Healthy, & Delicious Breakfast

OK, so I rarely make an entire meal from scratch. But I do try to make all our meals healthy. Breakfast is particularly challenging because we are usually rushing to get to school on time (typically failing in that endeavor) in the face of a four-year-old's daily protests against totally mundane and completely necessary morning tasks, i.e. putting clothes on, using the potty, eating, walking out the door, and climbing into the car.

Consequently, it is of epic importance that I keep breakfast preparation simple and quick. The following idea falls into that category very nicely.

If I have the time, I juice up enough oranges for two 8-ounce glasses - one for my son and one for me. Nothing like drinking freshly-squeezed O.J. (or, as we call it, "sunshine") first thing in the morning. Otherwise, pre-queezed organic O.J. does just fine.

Before firing up our little Krups "sunshine" maker, I pop a couple frozen blueberry waffles into the toaster oven and warm frozen organic blueberries and raspberries with a touch of organic maple syrup on the stove top. 

Then I slice the crisp and warm waffles with my indispensable kitchen shears (best cooking tool ever), dress with plain organic yogurt, and top with berry compote. Tasty, quick, nutritious. Done and done! Bon appetit!

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Saturday Fun* - Better Late Than Never

Saturday, November 12

Altadena, Eaton Canyon Nature Center: Annual Plant Sale for San Gabriel Mountains Chapter of the California Native Plant Society, 9-2
Los Angeles, Getty Museum: Many activities for families, throughout the day
Los Angeles, Children's Book World: Concert, 10:30
Los Angeles, Craft & Folk Art Museum: CRAFTlab Workshop: Wired Up, 12:30-2:30
Downtown (Little Tokyo), Japanese American National Museum: Free crafts and activities all day, 11-4

I will post more throughout the weekend. Thanks for checking in!

* Please check hyperlinks for details and to confirm activity. Some things occasionally get cancelled for various reasons.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Hankering for a Pear Galette

So I did a little searching online. Part of my goal, too, was to use puff pastry from Trader Joe's idling in the freezer for the past month. Never baked with it before. Truthfully, was equally intimidated and intrigued and enticed by it. Odd, I know.

Anyhoo, I also longed to make something interesting with a bag of organic pears and assortment of other compatible ingredients.

My guys are both asleep, it's daylight savings evening . . . I gained an extra hour and I'm a night owl any way . . . therefore it only makes sense that I should savor that windfall of time with a little fall baking.

The recipe I chose to use as my base guide is from Woman with a Wisk blog. I admired her simple, unfussy approach to something that I've always wanted to try but never thought I'd be any good at.

That slight fear didn't deter me from kicking up the stakes a notch - inspired by a recipe for Pear-Ginger-Raisin Muffins in one of my all-time favorite cookbooks (really a bakebook), Once Upon a Tart.

I actually love (even crave) lots of ingredients in one thing (i.e. cakes, pies, sandwiches, pasta, etc.). I know many folks eschew that concept and prefer less to more. But, for my lusted-after galette, I was aiming to make an earthy, fall-like, rustic pastry that almost eats like a meal.

On I proceeded. Additional ingredients included in my creation are:

A light dusting of ground coriander; at least a teaspoon (probably 2 or more) of cinnamon; pinch of powdered giner; handful of organic raisins; and a smattering of tiny crumbled crystallized dried ginger bits mixed into the sliced organic pears.

I also sprinkled cinnamon along the folded edge of the galette (after I brushed with egg mixture), as, I am of the mind that, the more cinnamon the better.

Aside from above variations, I followed the Woman with a Wisk recipe exactly, making two galettes, since I had so many pears and two frozen puff pastry sheets.

One before baking:

And after:

Not bad for a first try*. And was relatively easy! The kid and hubby are going to love it! (In fact, would be a fun project to take on with my 4-year-old.) I'm enjoying a small sample tonight, complemented by a cup of 2-bag chai tea steeped with lots of cinnamon sticks: fall flavor explosion!

*Practical baking tip: my galettes turned out to be overly juicy/runny. To lessen that, I slit a little hole into the side of each one and carefully tipped it on its side over the sink to drain. I will be serving these in the morning and didn't want them to be soggy by then.

Saturday, November 5, 2011

There's Snow Up In Them Thar Hills!

And Mountain High in Wrightwood (about 90 minutes from LA) is now partially open for business. Most lifts and areas of the park are still closed but it shouldn't be long for those to become operational too.

Plus, the drive up is supposed to be (I've never been but plan to go this winter) beautiful.

Hooray for Winter!!!

Friday, November 4, 2011

Free Concert for Kids in Los Feliz This Afternoon

Dragonfly DuLou is hosting Dan Zanes, AKA "The King of the Family Music Scene," today at 4:00 pm. It's free!