Chocolate + Date Oat Bars

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I am a 19 year old frat boy.

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In that I have been living like a stuffed pig this week.

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Garr was traveling this week and I was bound and determined to get the house spic and span after several weeks of both of us traveling.

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The laundry basket overflowing with three clean loads I’ve yet to fold tell a different story. I literally just dug through it to get some clean workout clothes for yoga tomorrow. I am ashamed of myself. Yet here I sit. Writing this. Instead of doing my chores. The irony. I was also going to clean all the bathrooms. I managed to put my hairbrush under the sink and contact solution in the drawer. The end. I also had big plans to sweep & mop on my lunch break. Did I instead read The Bachelorette spoilers? You better believe it. I even only ran Felix (roomba) once in 4 days. That is literally unacceptable! He’s used to a daily workout. I’ve reached a new level of lazy if I cannot *press* his button. I’m blaming it on the full moon. It’s sucking my energy for its weird lunar purposes.

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I have at least showered every day and for that I applaud myself.

 

Time: 2 hours (prep + cooking) | Serves: 12 bars

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups of whole wheat flour
  • 1 cup of rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup of granulated sugar
  • Pinch of S
  • 1/2 cup of vegan butter, melted
  • 12 oz. of pitted dates
  • 1 tsp. of vanilla extract
  • 1 cup of vegan semisweet chocolate chips

How to:

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  • Coat a 9×13 baking dish with cooking spray + top with a sheet of parchment paper
  • Meanwhile, combine flour + oats + sugar + S
  • Slowly stir in melted butter until combined
  • Scoop 2/3 of the mix into the bottom of the baking dish + pat into a flat layer
  • Pop in the freezer while you make the filling
  • In a food processor, combine dates + vanilla + pinch of S + 1/2 cup of hot water + process on high until smooth
  • Transfer to a bowl + fold in chocolate chips
  • Spread date mix on top of the oat base
  • Top with leftover oat mix + pat down
  • Bake for 40 minutes or until golden brown
  • Let cool for an hour + pop in the freezer for a bit to set
  • Cut into bars + serve! Or individually wrap them + pop back in the freezer for snacking throughout the week
  • Fasten on your bib, partner, there are going to be some serious crumbs

 

Adapted from here!

Mango + Tempeh Curry

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On my ever-expanding journey to become a better person, I’ve decided to stop complaining.

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For a week. I’m only going to stop complaining for a week.

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Baby steps, people.

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I was listening to K-Love on the way to yoga the other morning and was inspired by one of the sweet preachers who basically told me to get my act together and stop complaining all the time because I have everything I could ever need. Like, OK when you put it that way. At first I was like man this is going to be a piece of cake. I’m not really a complainer. I mean, I’m pretty self-deprecating, but I don’t really complain. Or so I thought… Man, I started evaluating my thoughts a little more closely and I whine about EVERYTHING. The weather, money, not having enough hours in the day, my face, my hair, my love handles, etc. You name it, I can probably find something pretty negative to say about it. It’s a gift really. But I’ve actually done pretty well the last 48 hours! Perhaps I’ve turned over a positive leaf!

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Then I had to call my internet provider and complain about my bill so alas I’m starting my week of no complaints fresh tomorrow.

 

 

Time: 45 minutes (prep + cooking) | Serves: 3-4

Ingredients:

  • 1 package of tempeh, cut into cubes
  • 1 tbsp. of coconut oil
  • 2 tbsp. of soy sauce
  • 1 red onion, diced
  • 1 red bell pepper, diced
  • 2 tbsp. of garlic, minced
  • 1 tbsp. of ginger, ground
  • 1 mango, diced
  • 1 1/2 cup of coconut milk
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • 1 tbsp. of curry powder
  • 1 tsp. of crushed red pepper
  • S+P, to taste
  • 2 cups of brown rice, cooked
  • Cilantro, for serving

How to:

  • Heat coconut oil in a large skillet over medium heat
  • Add tempeh + soy sauce, cook for 5-6 minutes or until browned slightly
  • Add onion + some S+P, cook another 3-4 minutes
  • Add pepper + garlic + ginger, cook another 4-5 minutes
  • Meanwhile, combine coconut milk + lime juice + curry powder + red pepper + S+P
  • Stir in coconut milk mixture + mango, bring to a boil, reduce heat + simmer for 15 minutes
  • Serve hot over brown rice with some cilantro
  • Using a funnel to avoid spillage, pour mango + tempeh curry into mouth + guzzle it down like a champion

 

Adapted from here!

Lemon Tarts

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In a galaxy far, far away lives the version of myself that used to be fun.

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There was a time when I was the life of the party!

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That’s a lie, my social anxiety has always kept me from obtaining that title.

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But I could hang! I mean, in WA, Garr and I used to start a Saturday with a fab brunch & spend the next 8 hours exploring & shopping & eating & listening to live music & doing photoshoots & stumbling upon random festivals & strolling by the water. Fast forward like 1.5 years & Garr and I go to Raleigh for the day, thinking it’ll be like our wild Seattle days. NAHT. We kick things off with brunch, old faithful. Turns out, this place makes all vegan desserts. Mmkay. So we order a peanut butter pie. At 11am. MISTAKE. We immediately need to be tucked in for a nap. But we must persevere! We decide to walk around downtown and find some coffee. This helps but only momentarily. We’re fading. It’s 12:30pm. We try to shop but nothing is catching our eye. We try to stop and grab a drink at this really hip restaurant but there are no seats at the bar. The world is conspiring against us! We’re at a crossroads, we can power through or we can embrace our aging, failing bodies and ditch the downtown scene, go to Trader Joe’s and go home for a siesta. 

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Got to TJ’s in time to snag ALLLLL the cauliflower gnocchis. Holler.

 

 

Time: 3 hours (prep + baking) | Serves: 12 tarts

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cups of unsweetened, shredded cocount
  • 1 cup of whole wheat flour
  • 1 tbsp. of coconut sugar
  • 1 tbsp. of brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup of coconut oil
  • 1 cup of raw almonds, soaked overnight or placed in a bowl + covered in boiling water, letting soak for 30 minutes-hour, drained
  • Juice of 2 lemons
  • 2 tbsp. of agave
  • 1 tsp. of vanilla extract
  • Pinch of turmeric
  • 1/4 cup of coconut milk
  • Pinch of S
  • Blueberries + raspberries for serving

How to:

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  • In a food processor, combine coconut + flour + sugar + 2 tbsp. of the coconut oil + the S, pulse until well combined + sticks together
  • Scoop a tbsp. of the crust mix in lined muffin tins + press flat
  • Bake for 10 minutes
  • Meanwhile, rinse out food processor
  • Add remaining coconut oil + almonds + lemon juice + agave + vanilla extract + turmeric, process + slowly pour in coconut milk, process until smooth + creamy
  • Scoop 1-2 tbsp. of lemon filling onto each crust + smooth it out
  • Freeze for 2 hours
  • Serve chilled with fruit on top
  • Take a giant bite out of a tart + smile as wide as the dent you made in it + snap a selfie with your tart + make it your profile picture

 

Adapted from here!