Foodie Friday: Smoothie

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I love making smoothies for my son Wyatt. He loves them and since he isn’t that great at eating fresh fruits and vegetables this is a good way to sneak many of them into his diet. I am also able to sneak a few more good things into my picky husband’s diet too 😉

Smoothie’s in my house greatly depend on what we have around the house but generally this is what we have and what I use.

Recipe:

Follow this order and the blender tends to blend things appropriately.

6-8 large ice cubes
1 banana (I won’t eat bananas except in smoothies)
Large handful of spinach leaves (I buy Popeye’s bagged spinach)
Medium handful of blue berries (I have frozen bag in the freezer at all times)
2-3 halves of frozen peaches (I skinned and pitted and froze peaches last summer)
4 Cuties/Clementines or 2 regular oranges
Then I pour in whole milk because they’re mostly for Wyatt but you could add 1%,
I probably pour in a cup. If the blender won’t blend I add more milk.

Can you imagine all the vitamins you’re getting in this??!!

I just bought frozen strawberries that I plan to add next time. This summer I’m going to try to freeze more of my own fruit, maybe blackberries and raspberries?

When I think about this, Wyatt drinks over 1/3 of this recipe so he gets 1/3 banana, 1/3 cup of spinach, 1 half of a peach, 1/4 cup of blueberries, over 1 Cutie. That definitely hits the fruit mark and helps get us closer to the vegetable one.

Sometimes I make banana and spinach smoothies. They are green and actually really tasty too. Ice and milk is all you add to those.

Far Away Foods: Dole Whip

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Yes, this isn’t some far away shack somewhere that is serving indigenous food out their kitchen window but this is just as delightful 😉

Dole Whip. That’s really all I have to say. If you’ve had it you know what I’m talking about. Very rarely is it available. I’ve had it at Wallowa Lake in Oregon. Other places I’ve heard have it: Disneyland, Disney World, and Hawaii.

What is it? It is a fruit flavored soft serve that has no dairy in it so Lactose Intolerants rejoice!!! It is light, creamy, and fruity. Who decided this was a great idea for the monthly blog theme! This is just torture!

Far Away Foods: Spaghetti Eis

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Spaghetti, why would you have to travel to Germany for spaghetti? Well, look a little closer, this is no ordinary warm tomato based spaghetti. This is the amazing desert known as Spaghetti Eis or Spaghetti Ice Cream. Yes, those little noodles are all ice cream and the sauce is an amazing strawberry sauce drizzled over the top. It should just taste like vanilla ice cream and strawberry sauce but you know there is something magical when vanilla ice cream is made into small little noodles. It tastes even better!

Far Away Foods: Döner Kebab

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So many foods in Germany need to be imported to Oregon! This food happens to be from Turkey originally. My funny little American brain completely assumed this would be a chain the way Henri talked about “Döner” being his favorite food. I was picturing that was like saying, “I love Nachos Bell Grande” a name of a certain food from a certain chain restaurant. Döner Kebab was so much more! It was in a variety of places, it was in small little cafe’s and food carts.

Döner Kebab is traditionally lamb roasted on a turning spit constantly being cooked by burners that are parallel with the meat.  Meanwhile the meat gets shaved off so each person gets some crispy cooked pieces of lamb. It is placed on a flatbread (couple different variations here) with lettuce, tomato, cabbage, a white sauce, and if you’d like it spicy some red pepper flakes.

It is so delicious and I just looked it up, there is a new food cart in Portland! I’m so excited! It is called Dönerland!

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Meringue Cookies

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Many years ago in high school I was on a meringue kick and I made meringue everything but since then I haven’t made it again. Wednesday, I was having Abby, Mitch, and Molly over for dinner and I remembered it as a fun sweet treat along the lines of macarons which Abby and Molly love so I thought I’d look up some recipes. I made two different ones a strawberry (which were eaten so fast I didn’t get a picture of them) and chocolate. I made them tiny and bite sized. Who knows maybe I might get my act together and make them for Easter? Here are the two recipes I used this time:

Strawberry Meringue Cookies

Ingredients
1/2 cup pasteurized egg whites, room temperature (recommended: Eggology)
1 teaspoon strawberry extract
1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
1 cup powdered sugar, sifted
2 drops red food coloring

Directions
Preheat oven to 215 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper; set aside.

In a large bowl, use an electric mixer to beat egg whites, 1 teaspoon strawberry extract, and cream of tartar on medium speed until frothy. With mixer running, add powdered sugar in tablespoon increments. Add food coloring and continuing beating until stiff peak form. (Careful not to overbeat.)

Transfer mixture to a pastry bag or large zip-top bag fitted with large round tip. Pipe into 2-inch spirals on prepared baking sheet. (I just put it in a zip-top bag and cut a corner so mine weren’t as fancy looking)

Bake in preheated oven for 45 minutes to 1 hour, rotating once. Turn off oven and open door. With meringues still inside oven, let dry out for 10 to 12 minutes.

Remove parchment paper from baking sheet and let meringues cool completely.

Recipe courtesy of Sandra Lee, 2007

Chocolate Meringue Cookies

Ingredients

4 large egg whites, at room temperature
1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup confectioners’ sugar
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa
Directions

Preheat oven to 225°F. Line 2 large rimmed cookie sheets with parchment paper.

Place egg whites in a clean dry bowl and beat with an electric mixer on medium-high speed until foamy. Add cream of tartar, increase speed to high and whip until mixture forms soft peaks. Gradually add granulated sugar and continue beating until whites are stiff and shiny.

In a separate bowl, sift confectioners’ sugar with cocoa to blend. Working in thirds, sprinkle cocoa mixture over egg whites and gently fold in until thoroughly incorporated. Transfer to a large ziplock bag. Seal bag, pinching out excess air. Snip off a small piece of one bottom corner of bag. Pipe out meringues through hole onto cookie sheets, forming small “kisses,” about 2 inches in diameter. Bake for 1 hour, until meringues are firm and dry. Turn oven off and let meringues sit in oven for 15 minutes.

Let meringues cool on sheets on wire racks, then gently peel kisses off parchment paper. Store at room temperature in an airtight container.

 

Additional information

After sitting on the counter for awhile they got sticky so I looked up more information about keeping them fresh. I found out this, “Made primarily of sugar and egg whites, meringues are hydroscopic. This means that they absorb moisture from the air and will start to soften and ‘weep’ after just a few hours on the counter.” (The Kitchn) so I rebaked the cookies for 20 minutes, let them dry in the oven for while and then packed them in zip-top bags. It is amazing you can bake and re-bake them because all you’re really doing is drying them out!

 

 

Far Away Foods: Pommes Frites and Curry Sauce

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So a very normal snack when I was in Germany was Pommes Frites (French Fries) in a little paper cone. The best part was a curry sauce that was drizzled on top. It was so good and really was the best thing I’ve ever had on french fries. I liked the mayo too. I’ve never been a fan of ketchup with french fries and you don’t have to worry about that in Europe ha ha!

I miss these so much!!!

 

 

Far Away Foods: Munich

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I can’t tell you the number of times I have thought, “I wonder how much a trip to Munich is right now?”, in connection to the little sausages I’m about to talk about. I of course look at the price of a trip fairly consistently because I miss my second family there, (love to you Ingo, Ute, and Henri) but these little sausages mmmmm….

So it had been a long day of touristing in Munich (should be considered a sport) and Ingo, Ute, and Henri and I were very hungry. So we stopped at this place. Nuernberger Bratwurst Gloeckl am Dom. Near the Cathedral, Frauenkirche.

Yes, there really are places in Germany that look exactly like you expect places in Germany to look and they are in abundance in Munich. It is really amazing! We walked in and this is what the interior looked like:

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These aren’t my pictures sadly, it was late at night when we ate there and not a single picture turned out. It is such a cozy little place and only dimly lit.

We ordered on the menu that you can now see at their website here is a direct link to downloading the menu in English.

Ingo helped me order the original Nuernberg sausages with either sauerkraut or potato salad. I can’t remember which because I remember trying other people’s sides as well.

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They also had horseradish as a side but it was different than any horseradish I’ve ever seen. I found a picture;

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These sausages are truly the best sausages in the world. Just looking at this picture makes my mouth water like you can’t believe. I’ve tried to get them at our local German Deli but they don’t sell them there. I miss these so much and writing these posts is just cruel and unusual punishment!

Far Away Foods: Wings! For Burgers?!

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So several years ago I was alone for the first time in the big city of L.A. More specifically Marina Del Rey which is a stones throw from Venice Beach. I finally ventured down to the beach by myself and I was starving. I stopped at this place on the beach and got a burger. Little did I realize it was going to be the best burger I had ever eaten in my life!!!

I know, I know, it was because I was starving and there was no one else there to be a witness so it probably didn’t even happen.

Years later, partly because I was so hungry to have this burger again, Jake and I finally ventured all the way to Venice Beach and we got to the spot where I remembered it being. We looked around and all we saw was this place called The Wings- Famous Chicken Wings. I suddenly felt like perhaps I’d experienced a “How I Met Your Mother” moment when Marshall can never find the place in New York  where he had the best burger in the world. Feeling panicky I decided to walk into the chicken place. As soon as I walked in the door I smelled the smell,recognized the decor, and even think I recognized the cook.

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Apparently when I was so hungry the first time I had never realized it was a chicken place. ANYWAY, yes, Jake agreed, it was the best burger ever. I can’t even explain why. I remember it being juicy with a toasted bun but beyond that all I can say is: It was perfect!

Journaling about a Toddler

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As a parent of a toddler I wrestle with what to document and what not to. I think I have documented everything sufficiently through short videos created on Snapchat so at least my Timehop app gives me updates of everything we have done on any given day; a year ago. What should I take a step further in documenting?

I’ve decided I’m going to document him as a reader. Yes, the fact I’m a teacher is clearly showing through but I thought it would be fascinating to watch how a reader truly develops because I’ll get to see it with my own eyes.

I honestly wish I’d started sooner. I’ve already missed documenting when he started knowing when a book is upside down, turning pages, making connections, and lots of other small things that make someone a reader but I think I’ll start now.

What would you/did you/are you documenting about your children? What in retrospect was the most helpful?

Doc Club- Living on One Dollar

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This is totally a by proxy review. I have actually not seen this movie but Jake brings it up so much in conversation that I’m going to be watching it soon. Perhaps not before the end of the month so I figured I should write about it now.

Living on One Dollar follows the journey of four friends as they set out to live on just $1 a day for two months in rural Guatemala. They battle hunger, parasites, and extreme financial stress as they attempt to survive life on the edge. An unimaginable reality for most young Americans, the challenges they face are real and plague over 1.1 billion people around the world. While the friends quickly learn there are no easy answers, the generosity and strength of Rosa, a 20 year old woman, and Chino, a 12 year old boy, give them resilient hope that there are effective ways to make a difference.

This is a family friendly film, Jake saw it while looking under Children and Family Section of Netflix. Never can start too soon teaching Wyatt empathy for those around us.

Available on Netflix – 56 min. (ha ha 56 days, 56 dollars, 56 minutes Kay will enjoy that!