Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Pinterest: December style

Guess what?

December is tomorrow! In lieu of the changing of the months, a December-inspired Pinterest post is in order!


Hello December

From Tumblr



This is my kind of Christmas wreath!
I can’t decide if I’m going to make it, or just stare at it on Pinterest … only time will tell.

Better Homes and Gardens



I played “Guess that Christmas movie” with this picture on Facebook yesterday.
It wasn’t very hard! Apparently I’m not the only one who loves Elf.

p.s. this is a free printable in case anyone wants it! click link below

Inviting Printables

free printable (Christmas Cheer)2


One fun part about Christmas is cookie cut outs!
I love this idea, and just may have to conjure up a delicious vegan sugar cookie recipe for such an occasion.
(if you have one, I’m all ears)

The 36th Avenue



And last but not least … Merry Christmas!
It IS December and all, it’s not too early to say it anymore.



If you have Pinterest, have you found any neat December-inspired pins? Do share!


Sunday, November 27, 2011

Homemade ravioli & brownie pumpkin pie

Hello, everyone!

Hope your weekend and/or Thanksgiving was great! The highlight of our Thanksgiving weekend wasn’t typical. Erik made homemade ravioli completely from scratch that was stuffed with a delicious cashew cheese. Though words can seriously not describe, let me tell you …

It.was.amazing!!! I could eat these puppies every. single. day of my life and be completely happy. YUM! My husband is awesome.

ravioli 1 ravioli 2IMG_5336

And one of the random treats I made was Oh She Glow’s pumpkin brownie pie. It’s a dessert that’s perfect for this time of year. I hadn’t baked with pumpkin yet this year(!) so it was an obvious choice to share with you all! I only changed a few things from Angela’s recipe so she definitely gets the credit, but here goes:

brownie pumpkin pie 8

Brownie Pumpkin Pie
Lightly adapted from Oh She Glows


Pumpkin brownie layer

  • 1 cup canned pumpkin
  • 3/4 cup organic cane sugar
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil, melted
  • 3/4 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon arrowroot
  • 1/4 cacao powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda

Pumpkin pie layer

  • 1 cup canned pumpkin
  • 2 tablespoon arrowroot
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/3 cup organic cane sugar
  • 3 tablespoons almond milk
  • 2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice (or 1 & 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon, 1/2 teaspoon ginger, 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg)
  • 1/4 cup vegan chocolate chips, chopped


  • 1/4 cup coconut oil, melted
  • 1/2 cup Sucanat (or brown sugar)
  • 1/3 cup whole wheat flour
  • 3/4 cup walnuts, chopped (or other nut)


  • Preheat oven at 350.
  • Make brownie layer by mixing together coconut oil, pumpkin, vanilla and sugar. Stir in flour, cacao powder, arrowroot, baking soda, seat salt, until completely mixed. Place mixture into greased pie pan and spread out evenly.
  • Make pumpkin layer by mixing together pumpkin, vanilla, and milk. In a separate bowl, mix together arrowroot, sugar, and spices. Add dry ingredients to wet and mix until smooth. Pour and spread out on top of brownie mixture. Sprinkle chopped chocolate over top mixture.
  • Make pie topping by mixing all ingredients together, and sprinkle on top of pie.
  • Bake for about 40 minutes. Next, the original recipe says to chill in fridge for 1 1/2 hours after cooled but I was too anxious to eat it and skipped this step. Still very good, in my book!

brownie pumpkin pie 4brownie pumpkin pie 7

And tonight, I put up a mini Christmas tree in my office. It will be a great motivation for work this week! ‘Tis the season, right??


When do you put up your Christmas decorations?


Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Thanksgiving recipe roundup (vegan style)

Thanksgiving has arrived!

If you’re like me, you plan a little bit last minute, especially when it comes to food gatherings and what you’re going to make. No worries, this post is for you! Here’s a quick round up of some delicious, mostly quick and hassle-free, Thanksgiving inspired recipes.

They contain fresh healthy ingredients and are all vegan. (I promise, no one would ever know it!) Our non vegan friends have tried just about all of these dishes and they were met with rave reviews. So without further ado …

Thanksgiving recipe round up

1. Mashed herb sweet potatoes

2. Roasted vegetable quinoa

3. Pumpkin spice roasted chickpeas

4. Delicious vegan stuffing

5. Quick & easy mini cinnamon rolls (yeast free, doesn’t need to rise)

6. Carrot raisin bread

7. Carrot cake balls

8. Double layer apple upside down cake

9. Cinnamon & nutmeg jelly donut bites

10. Raw apple pie

11. Raw raspberry “cheesecake”

12. Banana cashew ice cream (add some cinnamon and nutmeg to make it even more festive!)

13. Homemade dairy-free hot chocolate

Have a blessed Thanksgiving, everyone!!

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Delicious Vegan Stuffing

I’m back with another delicious holiday-inspired side dish!

I couldn’t help but throw this one in before Thursday comes around. We also brought this stuffing to our Monday night Thanksgiving with friends and it was just about as delicious as the mashed herb sweet potatoes, I promise.

Once again, another creation of Erik’s. I’m thankful to have such an awesome husband who cooks amazing food!

vegan stuffing 2

Delicious Vegan Stuffing


  • 1 loaf whole wheat bread
  • 3 medium sized stalks of celery
  • 1 onion, diced and caramelized
  • 1 teaspoon oregano
  • 1 teaspoon thyme
  • 1/4 cup raisins
  • 4 tablespoons coconut oil
  • 2 no salt added vegetable bouillon cubes with 3 cups water (or about 3 cups low sodium vegetable stock)
  • Sea salt and pepper, to taste


  • Preheat oven at 450 degrees. Chop or tear bread into bite-sized chunks. Place on a cookie sheet and toast for about 30 minutes until crispy.
  • In a small pan, caramelize onions in about 2 tablespoon coconut oil until they are completely tender. Stir often, should take about 30 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, chop celery, and in a separate pan, sauté them in about 2 tablespoon coconut until tender. Add bouillon cubes and water (or vegetable stock), sea salt and pepper and cook on low to medium heat for about 15 minutes.
  • Place toasted bread cubes into baking dish. Dump in the onion mixture, followed by the celery and liquid. Complete with raisins.
  • Bake at 450 for about 20 minutes, and yum!

a stuffingvegan stuffing 1

And that’s it.

Who’s ready for Thanksgiving??


Monday, November 21, 2011

Mashed herb sweet potatoes & Monday night Thanksgiving

Happy Thanksgiving!

Okay, I guess I’m a few days early. We spent our Monday night at a Thanksgiving get together with friends. We, of course, never pass up a moment to cook more than we need to, ha, so our contributions were quinoa with roasted vegetables, stuffing, mashed herb sweet potatoes and carrot cake balls. Here’s some photos from all the festivities:

thanksgiving 2 thanksgivingthanksgiving 3

A great night with great friends!

And now a bonus recipe from the night. Erik whipped up these delicious herb mashed sweet potatoes and we absolutely loved them. I would highly suggest them as an easy and very delicious Thanksgiving side dish!

mashed sweet potatoes 2

Mashed Herb Sweet Potatoes


  • 3-4 medium to large sweet potatoes
  • 1-2 large onions, diced and caramelized
  • 4 tablespoons coconut oil
  • 1 teaspoon oregano
  • 1 teaspoon thyme
  • Sea salt, to taste
  • Pepper, to taste


  • Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Peel and dice sweet potatoes, add to boiling water and boil until soft
  • While potatoes are boiling, dice onions and place into a sauté pan on medium to high heat with about 2 tablespoons coconut oil. Stir continuously until tender, then place on low heat and stir occasionally as to not burn until completely caramelized and very tender.
  • Once potatoes are boiled, drain water and using a blender (or masher), thoroughly mix together the potatoes, onions, 2 more tablespoons coconut oil, oregano, thyme, salt and pepper.

mashed sweet potatoes 33

These were awesome! Perfect blend of coconut oil and herbs that makes a perfect Thanksgiving side dish.

What’s your favorite way to eat Thanksgiving sweet potatoes?


Sunday, November 20, 2011

Double layer apple upside down cake

So how was your weekend??

Today we went to church, then I went to a baby shower, got groceries, came home, made some food and here we are!

Where are we, you ask?

Right here:

apple upside down cake 3

I always think upside down cakes are pretty, but had never yet made one. Thanksgiving right around the corner gave me the perfect inspiration!

apple upside down cake 5

Double Layer Apple Upside Down Cake
Makes enough for two 8-inch cake pans


  • 4 apples (I used honeycrisp, but feel free to use whatever you may have)
  • 1/3 cup + 1/3 cup coconut oil, divided
  • 1/4 cup sucanat (or cane sugar)
  • 2 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1 1/2 cup white whole wheat flour
  • 3 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 cup agave nectar (or honey)
  • 2 cups almond milk (or other milk of choice)
  • 1/2 cup raisins
  • 1/2 cup walnuts, chopped


  • Preheat oven at 350 degrees. Peel and chop apples.
  • In a warm saucepan, melt together 1/3 cup coconut oil and 1/4 cup sucanat. Add chopped apples and stir until combined. Let sit on low heat while you mix together the cake batter.
  • In a large bowl, mix together dry ingredients (flour, baking powder, cinnamon). In a smaller bowl, mix together wet ingredients (vanilla, coconut oil, agave, milk). Add wet ingredients to the dry and mix. Stir in raisins.
  • Lay out 1/4 of the apple mixture into each 8-inch cake pan (using in total 1/2 of the mixture; each cake pan is a double layer)
  • Complete first layer in each pan by pouring in 1/4 of the flour mixture into each 8-inch cake pan (using, again, 1/2 of the total mixture). Top each cake pan with 1/4 mixture of chopped walnuts (1/2 in total).
  • Repeat the last two bulleted step layers using up the rest of the apples and flour mixture. You will basically end up with two double layered 8-inch cakes.
  • Bake for 35 to 40 minutes. Once out of the oven, let cool for about 15 minutes, and flip cakes over, and layer on top of each other.

Notes: This recipe is the perfect denseness for an upside cake and best served warm right out of the oven. I suggest cutting out two pieces 8-inch round parchment paper and lining your pans with them. It ensures easy cake flipping. Enjoy!

apple upside down cake aa appleapple upside down cake 1 apple upside down cake 2apple upside down cake 7apple upside down cake 8

Who’s cooking for Thanksgiving this year, and what are you making??


Saturday, November 19, 2011

BADSEED's Pre-Thanksgiving Market

Hey you guys!

Hope everyone’s having a great pre-Thanksgiving weekend! We’ve been busy (in a good way) and I’ll have some delicious recipes coming at you in the next few days. You can always check out The Purple Carrot’s Facebook for recipe teasers, too. (hint, hint)

Anyways … thought I’d stop in and share a bit of our weekend with you via photos. First, we met up at BADSEED with some friends on Friday night. In case you aren’t familiar, it’s our favorite local farmers market. (I’m confident the pictures will show you why!) I snapped some photos since it was their big pre-Thanksgiving market with extra vendors. Love it!

And here we go …

badseed 1badseed 3badseed 4badseed 11badseed 12badseed 15

I tried my first official roasted chestnut while there too.

Oh. my. goodness.

So. so. good.

They’re also local and organic, from Chestnut Charlie’s in Lawrence, Kansas. I highly, highly recommend trying roasted chestnuts if you never have, especially from Chestnut Charlie’s. You will not regret it!

badseed 17badseed 16

(You can see a few more pictures on my Facebook).

After stocking up on some delicious produce (and chestnuts) we ate at Blue Koi, got some dessert at Mudpie and headed home for the night.

So there you have it!

Who’s ready for Thanksgiving?


Friday, November 18, 2011

Coming up in KC

Happy Weekend!

And not just any weekend, but the weekend before Thanksgiving! The festivities have begun and the holiday season is here to stay. I plan on posting a few more Thanksgiving’ish recipes before the big day arrives so be on the lookout the beginning of the week! But first … some current happenings in Kansas City:

Coming up in KC

  • Tour d’Italia: In case you missed out on the first round, which was November 15th, the Tour d’Italia has one more night, November 29th. It’s a dinner featuring a collaboration between SPIN! pizza, Chef Michael Smith and Cellar Rat Wine that is benefiting Harvesters. If you hurry, you can still catch a seat for dinner on the 29th. Tickets are $39.50 each and include 4 courses, 4 wines and a $10 donation to Harvesters. Seatings are available from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Click here for more info or to get your ticket!
  • Gram & Dun: Kansas City’s “original gastropub”, Gram & Dun, from Bread & Butter Concepts will be opening on November 22nd on the Plaza.
  • Plaza Lighting Ceremony: Speaking of the Plaza … their annual lighting ceremony is this Thursday on Thanksgiving evening. Pre-show performances begin at 5:15.
  • BADSEED Pre-Thanksgiving market: Saving the best for last, be sure to stop by BADSEED’s Thanksgiving market tonight. A great time to stock up on local food for your Thanksgiving meals and there will be extra vendors tonight just for this occasion! Starts at 4, goes ‘til 9.

Eden Alley

And for the rest of this blog post … a quick week night dinner at Eden Alley. After running some errands and not getting done until about 8:00, cooking didn’t seem like fun so we stopped by Eden Alley before going back home.

We started by sharing a bowl of potato dill soup. It was good, I liked the dill flavoring in it a lot. I might have to make a dill inspired soup sometime myself!

potato dill soup

Erik got the avocado vera cruz:

vera cruz

And I’m always a sucker for sweet potatoes (especially the week before Thanksgiving!) so I got my semi-usual sweet potato burrito.

sweet potato burrito

And now … the weekend. We’re headed to BADSEED with some friends tonight, should be fun!

What are you doing this weekend??


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