Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Purple Carrot Pizzeria

Welcome to Purple Carrot Pizzeria!

Okay, so Purple Carrot Pizzeria only exits in my garage, but let me tell you, it’s something special. If you’ve been around for very long, then you already know my husband is slightly obsessed with pizza, specifically a New York style crust. If you’d like a refresher, you can visit this post about how his journey to perfect crust began, or check out this post for some pictures of his first stage pizzas.

Since this pizza making began, he’s progressed from baking pizzas at the self cleaning temperature in our oven to a real pizza oven, which I talked about briefly here. Not only do we have one pizza oven now, but two. They’re housed in our garage with a gamut of other pieces of restaurant equipment. You see, my husband loves to buy kitchen equipment at auction, fix it up, and keep it resell it.

Thus, Purple Carrot Pizzeria was formed in our garage. Compete with a neon sign hanging up that flashes “Pizza Pizza Pizza”.

Yes, it’s that serious.

pizza 4

Now we can all stare at the delicious pictures.

IMG_6710 IMG_6727pizza 5

By the way, if you ever see any kitchen equipment on Kansas City Craigslist that says something like “So clean even Gordon Ramsay would approve!” then you can be sure it’s being sold by my better half!


March Foodie Photo-a-Day Reminder

Hey everyone!

Just wanted to stop in and remind you all about the March Foodie Photo-a-Day Challenge that starts TOMORROW, March 1st! For more details on participating, please visit this post.

And just so you know, I will be participating daily via Instagram (@purplecarrotkc), The Purple Carrot Facebook page, and Twitter. At the end of the 31 days of March, I’ll do a recap here on the blog.
Thanks to all who are excited, and participating!
Can’t wait to share this food-filled March with you all Smile

Sunday, February 19, 2012

March Photo-A-Day Food Edition

Anyone up for a March food photo-a-day challenge??

I’ve been addicted to the recent random photos a day that have been going on via Instagram, Twitter, Facebook and/or blogs that were created by Fat Mum Slim

So I had a thought it would be even more fun to create a foodie edition for all of us that love all things food related! 


It’s open to anyone who would like to join, and here’s how it works!
  • Beginning March 1st, take a food inspired photo corresponding to the date and cue written next to it. Feel free to interpret the cues however you’d like!
  • Once photo is taken, post it to whatever outlet you’d like whether it’s Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Flickr, Pinterest, a blog, etc and use the hashtag #marchfoodphotos.
That’s it! If you have any more questions, ask away.

I’m excited to share this month of food related photos with you all. Please share with anyone else who might be interested!

Who’s in??  


Feel free to link up your own blog or albums from Facebook, Pinterest, Flickr, Tumblr, etc below! Just add your link, pick a picture as thumbnail and submit. Or leave me a comment with a link and I'll add it for you :) Time to share some photos!

DIY Frame Key Holder

Time for my first official DIY post ever.

Let me start off by saying I do not consider myself to be a crafty person, though I aspire to be one, ha. I have a mom who can do about anything crafty there is to do. Growing up, she managed a fabrics and crafts store, taught craft classes, sewed tons of our outfits, fixes band suits in high school, took in and hemmed prom dresses, etc etc. If you don’t believe me, she has a quilting blog to prove it!

That being said, I hope at least a little bit of that is in my blood, and that someday it will come forth.

But we will start simple.

Very, very simple with a frame key holder, inspired by Pinterest. (I posted this iPhone photo on Facebook and Instagram the other day, so it may look familiar!)


DIY Frame Key Holder

Things you will need:

  • A frame.
    • It’s quite easy these days to find neat vintage or upcycled frames at antique stores. You can either find one already upcycled for you, or simply buy a frame from anywhere and paint it to your likings. I happened to have ordered some already painted frames off Etsy that I hadn’t put to use yet, so this is one of them.
  • A screw driver with appropriate size screw (the box of screw hooks will tell you which size).
  • Screw hooks.


What to do:

  • Take your frame and plan out where you’d like your hooks to be placed. I decided to use four hooks for my frame.
  • Once decided, drill correct sized holes into the frame.
  • After holes are drilled, screw in each hook, and you’re ready to mount on wall and hang keys!

Yes, it’s that easy!

diy 1

To some, they may not even be considered a DIY project due to it’s level of non difficulty, but it was a definite start for me.

Now I need to get pinning and find my next project!

diy 3


Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Baked sweet potato fries

I think if asked to pick one food as my favorite, sweet potatoes would have serious potential for winning.

Since I was little, I’ve absolutely loved them. I used to go to my grandma’s house when I was little, have her cook me the biggest sweet potato she had, and I would douse it in tons of butter and salt.

Don’t worry, I have since reformed my ways and eat them in a bit healthier way. One such way is in form of fries. Who doesn’t love a good sweet potato fry?


dinner 2

I like to chop my sweet potatoes in pretty large chunks. Once chopped, I toss them in a bowl with olive oil and sea salt. They should be lightly rubbed with the mixture, not saturated.

sweet potato fries 2 sweet potato fries2

Place them on a baking pan (I lined mine with parchment paper for easier clean up). Make sure they're not overlapped or they will not evenly cook. Here’s the part you have to pay attention to, lest you burn your sweet potato fries to a complete crisp.

Bake at 450 for 15 minutes. Turn fries over, and bake again for 10 minutes. Repeat this step two or three more times depending on how brown you want them. I like to get mine as close to burnt as possible without actually burning them into the above mentioned “complete crisp”.

sweet potato fries

We had our sweet potato fries with brown rice and lentils topped with sautéed kale and onions, served with a large portion of guacamole. If you put a bite of everything in your mouth all at once, the combination is delicious!

dinner 1

What’s your favorite way to eat a sweet potato?

Also, any tricks to getting baked sweet potato fries perfectly crispy?


Monday, February 13, 2012

Simple Citrus Guacamole

Guac, anyone?

I absolutely love avocados as of about a year ago. Before that, I just didn’t really got into them for some reason or another. But now, they are fabulous! And there’s so much you can do with them.

Of course one of the simplest and most delicious ways to eat an avocado is via guacamole! Eat it with rice and beans, eat it with salads, eat it with chips, eat it on burritos, it’s just as delicious each and every way!


This is our very simple guac recipe with little ingredients that’s great when you just want a quick edition with dinner or lunch. In the most delicious way, it has a perfect hint of citrus that gives it great, fresh flavor.

Simple Citrus Guacamole


  • 2 large avocados, peeled & pitted
  • Juice from 1/2 lemon
  • 1/3 medium onion, diced
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons sea salt


  • Throw all ingredients into a blender or food processor, and blend until smooth. Feel free to leave in some chunks if desired.

Note: Feel free to add some cilantro for an extra kick of flavor!

IMG_6657guac 33

Next up, Valentine’s Day … who loves it, who hates it??

Either way … have a great day, everyone!


Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Avocado & banana fruit smoothie

Today, I’d like to introduce you to my newest favorite smoothie.

I’m sorry to admit that I just now tried the addition of avocados in smoothies. I’m now convinced it’s the secret to the perfect creamy consistency!


Avocado & banana fruit smoothie


  • 1 ripe banana (good frozen or not)
  • 1/2 avocado, peeled and pitted
  • 1 cup fresh or frozen fruit (strawberries just may be my favorite!)
  • 1 tablespoon sweetener (honey, agave, dates, coconut sugar, etc)
  • 3/4 cup water or almond milk


  • Throw it all in a blender, blend until smooth, and enjoy!


What are your favorite must-have smoothie mix-ins??


Sunday, February 5, 2012

Rice & Lentil Loaf

Hope everyone has had a wonderful weekend!

Who didn’t watch the Superbowl?

I didn’t! I’m sorry, it probably makes me lame and uncool but please, don’t hate me because of it.

Moving right along, I thought I’d share a delicious dinner we had last week. I wanted something different, so I went with a rice and lentil loaf. I had never made one before, because let’s be real, they sound a little bit scary and don’t always look all that appealing. I wasn’t sure what to expect, and was pleasantly surprised.

lentil loaf 1

We ate our lentil loaf with sautéed veggies and sweet potato fries (complete with homemade ketchup). I always, always love sweet potato fries, and it was a perfect side to the loaf.

lentil loaf 5 lentil loaf 3

Rice & Lentil Loaf
Inspired by Vegetarian Lentil Loaf Recipe


  • 1 1/2 cup lentils (I used green lentils, but any will work!)
  • 3 1/2 cups water
  • 2 cups cooked brown rice
  • 2 medium onions, diced
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/2 cup ketchup (plus a little more if you wish to top your loaf with ketchup before baking)


  • In a large pot, cook lentils in the 3 1/2 cups water for about 30 minutes, or until tender. Drain and half mash them (it’s okay to have some chunks left)
  • Sautee the diced onions for about 7 minutes in the olive oil.
  • Place the sautéed onions with the mashed lentils, add your cooked rice, sea salt, and ketchup. Mix together until combined.
  • Transfer mixture into a greased loaf pan, and bake for about 1 hour, and let cool for about 15 minutes before slicing.

Note: Cooling is important to help keep the lentil loaf in tact.

lentil loaf 4

It was a delicious dinner, and I think I’ll definitely be making this rice and lentil loaf again.

lentil loaf 2


Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Simple Fresh Salsa


Hope everyone is doing well! We’ve definitely been feeling global warming or something here in Kansas City, especially the past few days. It seriously feels like spring and it’s just the beginning of February! I love it.

It’s funny, yesterday my friend who lives in California text me saying her weatherman had just said “it’s going to be a cool one today but warming back up tomorrow (cool is a high of 69)”.


I said, yeah, it’s going to be extremely warm here with a high of 66! Funny how different perspectives can be.

Okay, I’m not actually here to talk weather. I’m actually here to talk salsa. A slightly unconventional version, but oh-so-fresh and delicious! Here we go.

salsa 2 salsa 3

We love eating this salsa on tacos, with salads, atop some cold quinoa, etc. It’s quite versatile!


Simple Fresh Salsa


  • 4 medium sized tomatoes, finely chopped
  • quarter to half an onion, finely diced
  • 2 stalks celery, finely diced
  • 1/2 bell pepper, finely diced
  • 5 mushrooms, finely diced
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
  • juice of 1 lemon


  • Chop everything very finely, and throw it all together!

Note: This is obviously a very mild salsa, if you like it hot, feel free to throw in a couple jalapenos and it’ll do the trick!

salsa 4

Very simple, very fresh, very delicious!


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