Sunday, March 2, 2014

il Lazzarone

If you keep up with The Purple Carrot on Facebook or Instagram, the following is not new to you but if not, guess what?


Yep, this is happening! For years now Erik has been toying with opening a pizza place and even almost bought a building in Kansas City a little over a year ago when we lived there but it just never quite worked out. Fast forward through our move back to St Joe, our house remodel (which is still in the works even though we live there now), a new precious baby aaaand here we are!

This niche restaurant will be an authentic Neapolitan pizzeria called il Lazzarone. (I know, I'm sure the concept is shocking after how little we talk about pizza around here ;) It's not like we road tripped around the US just to eat pizza or anything).

Il Lazzarone: What is the meaning of il Lazzarone, you ask?

There is a lot in our name. The name represents not only a class of people but a way of life. Pizza started out as a peasant food. The il lazzarone or lazzaroni was seen to be this peasant class of people in Naples originating around 1770. Though the lazzarone were poor, they were known for living completely free, content, satisfied. The lazzarone avoided the rat race. They worked but they laughed. They worked but they rested. They worked but they stopped and ate… frequently. The only thing a lazzarone would eat was pizza and melon (accompanied of course by wine). They loved life, they lived freely, and most of all, they seized the moment.

That is what we wish to offer and convey. Come seize the moment, put your day on hold if just for 30 minutes, and come. Come to the table were you can experience both art and authenticity through food, wine and atmosphere.

il Lazzarone will be opening at 1628 Frederick Avenue in Saint Joseph, Missouri.

We’re currently making progress on the work that needs to be completed on the inside and our Acunto oven is on its way here from Naples. Tentatively, we’ll be opening Spring 2014.

Follow along
Follow along with our building progress and updates via Facebook, Instagram and Twitter!

Coming up
Coming up soon is a post on what you can expect to find at il Lazzarone!


Friday, February 14, 2014

Apple cinnamon muffins

I seem to be on a pretty good baking spree lately, much to the delight of my husband (okay, and myself, ha). We had a lot of apples in the fridge and I was looking to make a “breakfast” item so these babies were the natural progression. And we loved them. Perfect for a quick breakfast treat, snack during the day or dessert after dinner!

apple cinnamon muffins3

Apple cinnamon muffins with simple sugar glaze
Adapted from Add a Pinch
*makes about a dozen (I was able to get a few more than a dozen)


  • For muffins
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour (+ 2 teaspoons for coating apples)
  • 1½ teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 2 cups apples, peeled and diced
  • 1/3 cup (half a stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1/3 cup coconut oil, melted
  • 1 cup organic cane sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • ½ cup milk
  • For glaze
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar
  • 2-6 tablespoons milk or other liquid (depending on how quick you’d like it)


  • For muffins
  • Preheat oven to 375º F. Coat muffin or cupcake pans to prevent sticking or line with cupcake liners.
  • Stir together flour, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon in a medium bowl. Set aside.
  • Toss together diced apples and 2 teaspoons of flour to coat apples in a separate bowl. Set aside.
  • Cream together butter and sugar until lightened in color, about 3 minutes. Add an egg, one at a time and then the vanilla.
  • Gently fold in flour mixture, alternating with milk. Stir until just combined. Fold in diced apples.
  • Scoop mixture into prepared pans, filling them about 3/4 cup full. Bake until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean, about 30 minutes.
  • For glaze
  • Stir together powdered sugar and liquid until glaze is formed. Add more powdered sugar or liquid to desired consistency.

*Note: batter will be pretty thick

apple cinnamon muffins

apple cinnamon muffins2



Monday, February 10, 2014

Strawberry layer cake & mini red velvet whoopie pies

A bit overdue for a new blog post!

Winter is in full bloom here in the Midwest with cold weather and snow blanketed yards. Emersyn turned five months old on the 1st and we're getting more and more settled into our new place. Ive had many goodies that I've meant to share and have even taken photos but the actual sharing part is what I've had some troubles with ha.

So in light of Valentine's Day and the month of February, here's a few "red" goodies I've tried lately that we've gobbled right up. First, a strawberry layer cake via The Little Epicurean. Recipe can be found here. We really liked this cake.  It was light, fresh and delicious! A perfect Valentine’s Day treat.


And next up, red velvet whoopie pies! These are colored all naturally with beets and adapted from Baking a Moment. Erik’s work was having a cookie contest at work with the criteria being red cookies that were under 100 calories so I went with mini pies!  Each of these whoopie pies are approximately 50 calories each and about an inch round.  They’re also very addictive … yum!


Mini Red Velvet Whoopie Pies
**makes approximately 50 pies about an inch round


  • Cakes:
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 stick unsalted butter
  • 1 egg, separated
  • 3/4 cup beet puree (I roasted two beets in the oven at 400 degrees for 60 minutes then peeled and pureed)
  • 1/2 cup whole milk
  • 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons natural cocoa powder
  • 3/4 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • Filling:
  • 1/2 stick unsalted butter, softened
  • 4 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 1/4 cup powdered sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract


  1. Cakes:
  2. Cream the butter and sugar until fluffy, and then mix in the egg yolk.
  3. Add in the beet puree, milk, lemon juice, vinegar, vanilla, and combine.
  4. Add the flour, cocoa, baking powder, salt, and baking soda and combine.
  5. In a separate bowl, whip the egg white until fluffy and stiff. Fold the egg white into the cake batter.
  6. Drop approx 100 scoops of batter (about the size of a quarter) onto lined baking sheets, and bake at 375 degrees, for 7 minutes. Cool completely, and fill with fluffy cream cheese filling.
  7. Filling:
  8. Whip all the filling ingredients together until fluffy.



Saturday, January 25, 2014

Door to Door Organics

One thing about living in St Joe versus Kansas City that is the hardest for us is ... food! Not only do we miss our favorite spots (Quay Coffee, Westside Local, Little Freshie, etc) but there's not an over abundance of fresh local and organic foods for groceries. We are thankful for the options Hyvee has but so often, I've found their organic produce to be lacking in quality and variety. Along with that, I love being able to purchase local products, especially meat and eggs, which our Hyvee doesn't offer.

We've gotten Door to Door over the years sporadically but for whatever reason, had stopped getting it for a few years while living in KC. Once we came back to St Joe, however, I almost immediately signed up again because we could no longer just swing by Badseed on a friday night, etc. After tagging them in an Instagram post of Emersyn hanging out with these awesomely huge rainbow carrots I got in my box one week …
… I got an email asking me if I'd be interested in reviewing them. I don't really do many reviews on The Purple Carrot these days but this is one company I really do appreciate and love to share!

What Is It?

Door to Door Kansas City delivers fresh organic/natural local produce and food products right to your door in the KC and surrounding areas.
Door to Door Organics 2
How It Works

Each order starts with a produce box that you chose and customize.
You can make 5 substitutions to your weekly (or biweekly) box and shop their whole selection of vegetables and fruit. Their produce is always USDA Certified Organic and sourced locally whenever possible.
After that, you can shop through their ever growing selection of pantry staples. They have a variety of farm-fresh milk, free-range eggs, gourmet cheese, humanely raised meats, sustainably fished seafood, and artisan breads - to name a few.
One of my favorite features is that you can put your order on hold anytime you want for as long as needed so there's no weekly or monthly commitment if, for some reason, you need to take a break from receiving it.
Door to Door Organics
Door to Door Organics 7

I snapped some photos of some of the past couple weeks boxes for some examples.

We get the majority of our groceries through them and they always seem to be growing and improving their selections. They also do a great job of keeping everything cold via their packaging even if it be frozen meat or milk.
Door to Door Organics 6Door to Door Organics 5Door to Door Organics 3 Door to Door Organics 4
Their prices are overall very reasonable and in line with most healthfood stores and I've always been impressed with the quality. Less than a handful of times have I had to contact them with any problems with an order and each time they were quick to happily fix it. I highly suggest giving them a try! I mean, who doesn't want to skip the store and come home to their groceries sitting at your doorstep? Yeah. Visit their website for more details and to check out what all they have to offer! And give them a try!

***Enter the word "purple" at checkout on your first order and receive a $10 discount!***

PS: Dear D2D, please add Oddly Correct coffee, Little Freshie pops, meat from Local Pig, aaaand Kalona SuperNatural milk to your selections. Thank you ;)

Sunday, January 5, 2014

Tartine fruit galettes

Hello, 2014!

Hope everyone had a great Christmas and New Year! Emersyn is now 4 months old and she had a great first Christmas.

I haven't posted as much as I'd like to here but I have been trying to bake at least once a week and have gotten into a nice groove getting dinner made efficiently these days. We recently got this Tartine cookbook filled with awesome baked goods, pastries, etc.

IMG_2007 IMG_2008
Tartine is a widely popular neighborhood bakery and cafe in San Francisco. While we haven't been there, one only has to see pictures to realize how awesome their breads and pastries are. I'm on a mission to bake as many of these recipes as I can and first up ....
Fruit galettes

The cookbook is filled with beautiful photos and very detailed and easy to read instructions even for the more complicated items.

We filled our galettes with sautéed apples and pears and paired them with homemade vanilla ice cream. 

Uh, YUM! It's taken us about all our willpower not to eat every one of these mini galettes in less than 24 hours.

They literally may just be my favorite tasting dessert I've ever made. The dough came out absolutely delicious with just the right amount of crisp and flakiness. I used two different kinds of Caputo 00 flour as we have a few giant bags lying around for Erik’s pizza making and it really seemed to work out perfectly.

I can't wait to make them in the summer at the peak of berry season! Tartine comes highly recommended by The Purple Carrot household and I'm already excited to make the next thing ...


Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Easy roasted vegetables

I think my all time favorite way to eat vegetables is to simply roast them. Without fail, they always taste good and you can mix and match about any veggies together to create a delicious roasted combination!

It's a colorful, filling go-to side dish that really only requires chopping, a little seasoning and placing them in the oven. 

Easy Roasted Vegetables

  • Chopped vegetables of choice 
  • I used:
  • Rainbow carrots
  • Fingerling potatoes
  • Sweet potatoes
  • Broccoli
  • Celery
  • Zucchini squash
  • Mushrooms
  • Large red onion
  • Extra virgin olive oil (or try coconut oil for a fun different flavor profile)
  • Salt and pepper, to taste

  1. Preheat oven at 375 degrees.
  2. Chop vegetables.
  3. Mix chopped veggies together with salt, pepper, and enough olive oil to lightly coat all veggies.
  4. Place flat on baking sheets, place in oven for 45 minutes to an hour.
  5. Stir/flip veggies at least once halfway through.

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Pumpkin coconut pie

Now that Thanksgiving has come and went, I'm having a hard time believing it's December and Christmas is so very close!

Despite the increasingly cold weather and darker evenings, I can't help but love winter in the Midwest around Christmastime. The snow, hot beverages, cuddling up in warm blankets, a cozy fire, yummy food, etc. One such ingredient of the season being pumpkin!

I made this pumpkin coconut pie for Thanksgiving and we both liked it so much I'm definitely going to be making it more throughout the holiday season!

I don't typically enjoy pumpkin pie all that much but the addition of coconut milk really gave it an extra punch that made me love this version.

Pumpkin Coconut Pie

  • pie crust of choice
  • 1 15-ounce can pure pumpkin
  • 3/4 cup coconut milk, stirred (the full fat kind in a can)
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten 
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice


  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees
  2. Place all ingredients into a large mixer or bowl and mix well
  3. Pour mixture into prepared pie crust
  4. Bake for about 45 minutes or until pie is set up and slightly jiggly in the middle 
  5. Let pie completely cool before serving


Friday, November 29, 2013


Happy belated turkey day!

Hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving full of family and good food! 

It was just us for our Thanksgiving meal this year but we still went all out with turkey, roasted veggies, mashed potatoes, corn bread muffins, pumpkin coconut pie, homemade vanilla ice cream and cashew ice cream. Needless to say, we'll be eating lots of turkey in the next few days. Logically, the pie was first to disappear.

I haven't had a chance to post "after" pictures of our house yet because we're barely moved in and have little furnishings. However, here's a Thanksgiving sneak peak of our kitchen.

We're not used to have a giant dining room but recently got this large funky table off of Craigslist. So naturally we had to have fun with the fact it was just Erik, Emersyn and I sitting at it.

So grateful for our first Thanksgiving as a threesome! 

A few recipes from our Thanksgiving meal soon to follow! :)

Monday, November 25, 2013

Toasted coconut oatmeal bars

And we're back!

After a crazy year with lots of change and few blog posts, The Purple Carrot is hoping to make a comeback! We're moved into our new house, Emersyn is about 3 months old now and I'm officially a stay at home mommy. #Thankful

I quickly discovered there's not much extra time in the day with a newborn to take care of, ha.  But we've got a bit of a routine these days and I'm figuring out how to get a few other things done slowly but surely like house cleaning, cooking, baking etc. 

Therefore here we are! 

Erik and I tend to spend way too much money on prepackaged bars because let's face it, they're so easy to just grab and go. But it does hurt spending almost $2 on a bar when you could make a whole pan of them for about the same price! 

We also have an over abundance of shredded coconut right now by accident (hello, accidental subscription on Amazon) so I set out to use some of it up while saving some money. Success!

Toasted Coconut Oatmeal Bars

  • 1 cup unsweetened shredded coconut (I used finely shredded)
  • 3 cups all purpose gluten free flour (or flour of your choice)
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup coconut oil, melted
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract 
  • 1/2 cup sunflower butter (or nut butter of your choice)
  • 1/2 cup almond milk (or milk of your choice)
  • 2 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
  • Optional: extra shredded coconut and drizzle of honey for topping

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. 
  2. Spread coconut on a sheet pan and toast in the oven while prepping ingredients, stirring to make sure it browns evenly and watching closely to see it doesn't burn. Remove from oven and set aside.
  3. In the bowl or a stand mixer, beat the coconut oil, brown sugar and vanilla until thoroughly mixed.
  4.  Add the flour and salt and mix until combined and comes together in clumps. It will be crumbly. 
  5. Add oats, nut butter, toasted coconut, and milk and mix until incorporated.
  6. Press dough into a greased 9x13 baking pan. Optional: top with a layer of shredded coconut and drizzle of honey for extra flavor and texture.
  7. Bake for approximately 20 minutes, or until golden brown. Let cool completely before slicing.

These taste like more of a dessert or snack bar rather than breakfast but who doesn't like dessert for breakfast anyways? Any time you eat them, they're delicious!

Emersyn is sensitive to when I eat wheat and dairy so I've been having to avoid both while breastfeeding and these happily fit the bill! Word on the street is, coconut oil is also very good for mom and baby, too. Bonus! 


And happy almost Thanksgiving! What item are you most looking forward to on the dinner table??

Monday, August 19, 2013

One week until ...

Hello there!

It’s been almost two months now since I’ve checked in to The Purple Carrot so I thought it was high time I do so!  I haven’t really even posted a whole lot on Purple Carrot Kids that much the past few months … time has flown by.  For instance, our little girl is due in SIX (6!) days. 

As I said on Purple Carrot Kids, my last day of work was this past Friday, I figured it would be good for me in the midst of all the chaos to have a week to chill out, do some last minute things and focus on baby.

photo (6)
House Updates

Our house is moving along very well despite the fact that it’s not ready to move into just yet.  Most of our kitchen is installed, we’re just waiting on the appliances and some more cabinets to be put up.  Let me tell you, it’s making me so excited to have my own kitchen once again and to be able to dust the cobwebs off of The Purple Carrot!

38 weeks[6]

Aside from the kitchen likely being completed and appliances being here beginning September, some flooring needs finished along with all the window and floor trim, doors, some more lightening installed, some painting, etc etc … fun “finishing” touches like those.

A few random pictures of the current day status:

IMG_1135 IMG_1137IMG_1150 IMG_1154IMG_1140 IMG_1161IMG_1156 IMG_1165

Now to meet our little girl any day now and finally be able to move in shortly after … we’re getting so close!

Thanks for your patience, blog world, hopefully we will be back very soon …


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