New Recipe on Jaybird: Sweet Potato Waffles

Sweet Potato Waffles Recipe

Hey foodie friends! If you’ve enjoyed paleo recipes from Humble Foodie in the past, you’ll love these Sweet Potato Waffles made with easy sweet potato puree and a few simple ingredients. You can get the recipe on JaybirdBlog.com, which is where I share new recipes, DIY projects and life experiences.

Old Humble Foodie recipes will stay here for a couple more months, but you should copy and save any you’d like to keep after February 2014. To keep getting new recipes, follow Jaybird Blog and like us to stay up to date:

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Big News

Dear foodies,

Sharing a meal has always been my favorite way to get to know someone. My friends tease me for using the expression “breaking bread”, but I believe there’s something powerful about experiencing the same tastes and the conversation that naturally arises over a meal.

That’s why Humble Foodie has been so special. Kerry and I started this blog in October 2011 as a way to share recipes we love. Since then I’ve been posting recipes and the occasional thoughts or DIY project, and it’s grown into something bigger. Humble Foodie has become a community built on a shared love of food- what a delicious place to be.

But I want to share more. I want to swap recipes and test them out together, but I also want to write about experiences and invite others to join me. I’m looking forward to a big move, some travel, time with family, and exploring places new and old. That’s something I want to write about. And throughout it all, I want to focus on the idea of home–a feeling and a community that you can build in any physical place.

I’m excited to announce that all of this will be taking place on my new blog: Jaybird. If you want to join the new adventure (and keep receiving new recipes!), add the new blog to your feed or subscribe by email. You can also like Jaybird on Facebook and follow on Twitter or Pinterest for even more updates.

And don’t worry–if you’ve pinned or bookmarked recipes on Humble Foodie, they’ll stay right here for the time being. For a preview of the recipes you’ll find at Jaybird, come and see!

Thanks for reading Humble Foodie, and I hope you’ll join me at Jaybird.

Until we mix again!

Alicia

New Obsession: Paleo Burrito

Paleo Burrito from Humble Foodie

With summer fast approaching, I’ve shaken out my picnic blanket and started working on new paleo-friendly picnic recipes. There are plenty of vegetables and ingredients that work as a paleo substitute for classic picnic foods; for example, spaghetti squash or zucchini noodles for pasta salad. Sandwiches are trickier. I’ve tried hearty almond flour pancakes that serve as bread, thin egg-based crepes for wraps, and portobello mushrooms instead of a burger bun. These all taste great, but they don’t always travel well.

Collard greens have come to the rescue for a sturdy stuffed wrap or burrito. These big leaves are slightly thicker than lettuce, wrap well, and can hold hot or cold ingredients. I love to use and reuse leftovers, and having a bunch of collard greens in the fridge means I can always repurpose roast chicken or pulled pork into a tasty paleo sandwich. With leftovers in the fridge, wrapping a burrito takes less than five minutes. Stick a toothpick in it and you’ve got lunch to go!

Today I’m sharing my favorite paleo burrito and wrap fillings. I’d love to hear your suggestions in the comments!

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DIY Gratitude Calendar

Gratitude Calendar DIY from Humble Foodie

Of all the wonderful people in my life, I am the most grateful for my family. My parents taught me to be kind, to assert myself, and to appreciate a good chocolate chip cookie. They are empathetic listeners and seasoned advice givers.

My mom especially has taught me about respect and gratitude. One of my favorite pieces of advice is something she would tell me if I gave her attitude for no reason: “Alicia, it’s okay to be mad or to have a bad day…but it isn’t okay to take it out on me.” Writing that reminds me that I could be a pretty bratty teenager…sorry Mama! This phrase comes to mind whenever I’m frazzled and not acting like my best self. It grounds me to remember her wise words, and I strive to put them into practice every day.

Gratitude is another mindset we both try to practice. When I was growing up, every holiday gift required a thank you note to the giver before playtime. I now appreciate thoughtfulness, whether it’s packaged in a box with a bow or comes as a gesture, and try to recognize others for their kindness. My mom is someone who regularly puts her thoughts into words. She delivers compliments, asks questions, apologizes, and asserts herself in a way I can only hope to emulate.

This year, I’ve put a lot of effort into creating thoughtful gifts instead of buying something for the holidays. When I saw this beautiful gratitude calendar on Stratejoy, I knew it would be a perfect gift for her birthday. We both make gratitude lists, and creating a daily practice of gratitude is a simple way to embrace all the good that comes our way. Here are my simple instructions for making your own gratitude calendar, which you can start any day of the year.

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Weekend Reads // ed. 7

table of cakes

Happy weekend! I’m thrilled to have a whole Saturday to myself…time to hole up in the coffee shop where there are constant hot cyclist sightings, meet my blogging friend Eileen  in person for the first time with our awesome mutual friend Beth, and do some fun datey things.

In the meantime, i’s been awhile since I shared my favorite reads. I’ve been working late a couple nights a week and recently took a whirlwind trip to Ohio (where I ate all of these cakes, and they were amazing). I’ve spent the past few days catching up and have found some quirky, interesting, and insightful nuggets of internet gold to share.

And of course, I have a recipe for you too. TRIPLE CHOCOLATE TRUFFLES from PaleOMG! I’ve had a chocolate craving practically nonstop for three weeks (and yeah, I’ve indulged it…did you see those cakes up top?) so these yummy little bites seem like they’d hit the spot.

And on the note of delicious chocolate…hope your weekend is full of fun and friends!

Alicia

Spring Greens Frittata

humble foodie paleo spring greens frittata

Spring is finally here, and though I’m not thrilled about the flash flooding it’s brought, I am over the moon to see tender stalks of asparagus back in the grocery store. Asparagus is a delicious side broiled and dusted with cayenne pepper, and it also makes a hearty green filling for a frittata. Breakfast is the one meal where I don’t always get enough vegetables, so stuffing this dish with as many greens as possible seems like a good solution.

Frittatas, an Italian egg dish, are a lifesaver. They’re easy to make, help use up leftovers, and keep well in the refrigerator for a few days. Though sitting down to a hot breakfast is a wonderful way to start the day, I don’t have time to cook something fresh every morning. I do, however, have time to microwave a slice of frittata and throw it on a plate with salad, sauerkraut, and some slices of avocado. Frittata is a sturdy breakfast dish, so it’s also easy to take a slice on the go when you’re short on time.

paleo whole30 spring greens frittata
I love these pear napkins from Sandalwood Studios.

Whenever I have a busy week, I spend a few minutes on Sunday and Wednesday nights making a frittata. A six-egg frittata is three breakfasts for me, but depending on your household and appetite, you may want to upgrade to one with eight eggs or even go up to a dozen and increase baking time accordingly. One of the hesitations many people have with going paleo or removing processed food from their diet is that making their own meals at home will take too much time.  That absolutely does not have to be the case. Frittata is a perfect dish for those new in the kitchen, new to Paleo, or focusing on clean eating. I tend to stuff my frittatas full of an obscene amount of vegetables, so scale back if you’re into something a little lighter.

Spring Greens Frittata
Recipe Type: Breakfast
Cuisine: Italian
Author: Alicia of HumbleFoodie.com
Prep time: 4 mins
Cook time: 12 mins
Total time: 16 mins
Serves: 3
Tasty spring vegetables and baked eggs make an easy breakfast with great leftovers
Ingredients
  • 1+ tablespoons coconut oil
  • 1/2 bunch asparagus, trimmed and chopped into 1″ pieces
  • 2 teaspoons Herbes de Provence
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup chopped green onions
  • 6 eggs
  • optional: flat-leaf parsley for garnish
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Over medium heat, melt one tablespoon coconut oil in an 8-inch cast iron skillet. Add asparagus, season with Herbes de Provence, salt, and pepper. Saute til the asparagus begins to turn golden brown.
  3. Add green onions and cook for 30 more seconds, then turn off and remove from heat. Allow vegetables to cool slightly.
  4. In a medium mixing bowl, whisk eggs until evenly combined. Stir in vegetables.
  5. Make sure the skillet is evenly coated with coconut oil, adding a little more if necessary. Pour egg and vegetable mixture into the skillet and cook for 5 minutes over medium-low heat.
  6. Place skillet in preheated oven and cook for 4 minutes, then turn on broiler. Broil on high for 2-3 minutes or until the top of the frittata is puffy and golden brown.
  7. Garnish with flat leaf parsley before serving if desired.

 

Homecoming

kenyon homecoming middle path

the entrance to campus as you follow Middle Path

I had forgotten how good it feels to wake up in a beautiful place. This weekend I visited my alma mater, Kenyon College, and received a warm reminder. Walking out of the hotel and onto the tree-lined path that stretches through campus, I felt completely at home. The crocuses had started to bloom a week before, Amish women were selling quilts and baskets, and Adirondack chairs just begged to be sat on. The company of friends and sisters sweetened every cup of coffee.

I always have mixed feelings about returning to such a beloved past home. During my first year as an alumna, I couldn’t quite believe that the community continued to exist without me. This place had been my world for four years, but my departure wasn’t even a blip on its radar. That year, I wanted to be missed. I hadn’t quite found a home in my new life, and Kenyon was the only place I knew I fit in. Even as I recognized the silly selfishness of that feeling, realizing that I was just another transient college student hurt.

women of gambier brunch flowers

brunch bouquets + the history of women at the college + riot grrrl movement

The college community is a strange place where, as much as things change, they seem to stay the same. I realized this year that the community moves on because it has to. Even with the coming and going of members every year, its values and character do not change. New people take up the torch, invest their love and laughter for four or more years, and carry this place in their hearts when they leave.

On Day 3 of my visit, nostalgia finally knocked down the tentative barrier I’d put up between myself and my old home. Surrounded by generations of students, staff, faculty, and community members at the annual Women of Gambier Brunch, I felt at once incredibly at home and incredibly awash. Hosted by the women’s center where I lived and worked in college, this event brought together so many things I love about the Kenyon experience: being part of traditions, hearing life stories, celebrating with food, belonging in a nurturing space open to all members of the community.

sisters snuggling

my sisters!

Nothing could have prepared me for how I felt when I saw my sisters. It was our sorority’s alumnae weekend, so I reunited with dear old friends and met the girls who are continuing our tradition on campus. Even though we keep in touch, being together in person felt like we actually caught up. These women watched me grow up and grew up with me. We share absurd inside jokes, sarcastic expressions that translate to love, and an unconditional connection no matter where life takes us.

This weekend was the sum of fulfilling and heart-wrenching. It was a reminder of the relationships that have sustained and supported me through a road that is all kinds of bumpy. It was an embrace I sorely needed. Most of all, it was an affirmation that this place will always exist, in equal parts exactly as I remember and completely different. It was coming home.

Chicken Kebabs over Cauliflower Couscous

Hi there! If you’re new to the Humble Foodie, thanks for dropping by! If you’re enjoying the recipes, projects, and musings, follow Humble Foodie on FacebookTwitterInstagram, and Pinterest for even more pictures and updates. New friends are always welcome.

Spring and summer are the seasons of friendship. As the sun heats up, moods lift and everyone comes out of winter hibernation to plan warm-weather fun. Sunshine sets the stage for a myriad of casual social events, from BBQs to picnics to camping trips. Now that we’ve compared gas and charcoal BBQ grills, hopefully you’re ready to join me for some outdoor fun.

My family owns a gas grill that we fire up often in the summer. Though the smoky flavor imparted by a charcoal grill is phenomenal, the convenience of setup and ease of cleanup make gas a winning option for casual dinners. One of our favorite family recipes for Sunday dinner is chicken kebabs served over couscous. I’ve been working on my Paleo version of couscous for awhile, and I’m excited to share this meal with you today!

chicken kebabs paleo cauliflower couscous Continue reading

Prayer of Saint Francis

I don’t know how to define my faith or if I have one, but I find consolation in the idea that something connects us all. Whether it’s a deity or simply the beautiful, unconquerable human spirit, sending words of compassion into the world brings me comfort when I do not possess understanding. One of the most powerful, healing things that I do in difficult times is pray. It doesn’t matter if the thoughts are directed to a higher power or inward to your own being. I wish you peace.

saint francis prayer

Taking Care

“Take care.”

We often say goodbye to friends and colleagues with this simple phrase, sometimes without realizing the implication: I want you to take care of yourself. Why?

These words express our desire to see our loved ones happy and healthy. What goes unsaid, and often unrecognized, is that care begins with the self. We identify this responsibility when encouraging our friends to “take care”, but when it comes to our own lives, self-care is often the first duty to be sacrificed at the altar of a busy life.

Megan of Pink O’Clock recently wrote on being kind to ourselves and shared a list of the ways she takes care of herself. The little niceties–coffee at a favorite shop, a pause for ten deep breaths in the middle of the day, taking five minutes to make home a clean and inspiring place–add up to bring greater joy and peace in a difficult world. Megan’s post has been on my mind since I read it, and today I want to share the ways I try to take care of myself.

· Making and drinking pour-over coffee
· Cooking lavish dinners just for me
· Choosing a job I love
· Indulging my desire to buy ridiculous floral rompers when thrifting
· Taking myself on dates
· Embracing a challenge
· Reading before going to bed
· Journaling
· Spending time outside whenever possible
· Hosting friends over the weekend
· Taking inspiration from high school students
· Dark chocolate
· Speaking kindly
· Treating myself to 50¢ books from the library
· Writing letters
· Being assertive about my wants and needs
· Reading Real Simple and Martha Stewart Living
· Going to bed early
· Calling and emailing my parents regularly
· Burning soy candles in the evening
· Apologizing when I’ve done something hurtful or wrong
· Single malt scotch
· Crafts
· Finishing what I start
· Unplugging from my cell phone, computer, etc.
· Walking along the beach
· Growing vegetables at home (or at least trying to)
· Picking up unique foods at the grocery store to try new dishes
· Entering conflict with an outcome-oriented mindset
· Smiling as often as possible
· Not making excuses for needing personal time
· Finding a reason to celebrate every day
· New nailpolish
· Ukulele singalongs with Emily
· Brunch with my sisters
· Trips home to Virginia
· Setting work/life boundaries and holding fast
· Trips to Mitsuwa for real ramen
· Silly emails about everything with my high school girlfriends
· Sending thank you notes when called for and just because
· Waking up early on weekends to get things done

The coolest part of all this is that posts by two other bloggers, Meg and Mary, inspired Megan to write her post, which in turn inspired me. I hope the effect will ripple and encourage you to reflect on how you show yourself kindness, whether that takes the form of a journal entry, a private meditation, or your own blog post.

Take care, friends.

Alicia