Brownie Bomb

“Everything can be taken from a man but one thing: the last of the human freedoms – to choose one’s attitude in any given circumstances.” Viktor Frankl

I like connecting with friends and learning what rituals people have adapted to make their time at home more enjoyable. What is your ritual? For me it’s having tea in the morning with my husband (english in the early am and green in the late am), long walks listening to a book, cooking, blogging, organizing, talking with my family and friends, evening pool time with the kids, and playing Words with Friends. Whatever it may be we are all having mixed emotions about what’s going on in the world and doing our best to make the most of the situation. 

Now onto these amazing healthy no bake brownies that my daughter created the other day. It’s a fun project to do with the kids. 

No Bake Brownie Cookies

For the Cookies

  • 3/4 cup rolled oats
  • 1 tablespoon ground flaxseed meal
  • 1 tablespoon cocoa powder
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 tablespoon almond butter
  • 1 tablespoon melted coconut oil
  • 1 1/2 tablespoon maple syrup
  • 2 tablespoons dark chocolate chunks or chips

For the Glaze

  • 1/4 dark chocolate
  • 1 teaspoon coconut oil
  • flakey salt to taste (for sprinkling on top of the cookies)

Directions

Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. In the food processor or blender, grind oats to a flour like consistency. Add salt, flax, and cocoa powder and mix to combine. Add the almond butter, coconut oil, and maple syrup mix to combine. Lastly, add chocolate and pulse to combine. The batter should resemble a textured cookie like batter consistency. Using a small cookie scoop, scoop the dough and form into cookie shapes by rolling into balls and lightly pressing them down (see above picture). Chill in the freezer while you make the glaze. Combine glaze chocolate and coconut oil in a bowl and melt until smooth. Take your cookies out of the freezer and dip each cookie halfway into the glaze, sprinkle with flaky salt, and set it on the cookie tray to dry. Put the cookies in the freezer to set for 1 hour. 

Enjoy!

Bing for the Bang

Just like Sylvana Ward I’ve been wearing my fleece jacket around the house and on my morning walks to stay cozy warm. Her cute Anine Bing just so happens to be on sale here along with the Sierra pullover here and here. I have been rotating between my Patagonia  Synchilla and my Donni  leaopard pullover (also on sale). Also on the radar is this new Alo Stadium Zip hoodie that arrived at Nordstorm

 

Simple Slaw

Sunday night I made Ga Nuong chicken (see Banh Mi post for chicken marinade), asian slaw, and udon noodles. It was a really simple dinner that everyone loved. Below is my asian slaw recipe. 

Ingredients

  • Purple or green cabbage thinly sliced 6 cups
  • 1 cup chopped kale
  • 3 pealed and thinly sliced carrots 
  • 1/3 cup cilantro

Dressing 

  • 3 tablespoons rice vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons peanut oil (or substitute another oil if you don’t have)
  • 1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
  • 1 tablespoon minced ginger
  • 1 teaspoon of sugar  (I don’t love a sweet dressing so I leave it out)
  • 2 teaspoons chili paste
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce

Combine cabbage, kale, carrots, and cilantro in a large bowl. In a separate bowl mix together all your dressing ingredients. Simply add the dressing to your slaw and toss to coat. 

For a simple no fuss asian noodle dish just boil your udon (or any noodle you have in the pantry) noodles and drain. Then add 1 tablespoon of sesame oil and 1 tablespoon of soy sauce and toss to coat. Sprinkle with sesame seeds. 

 

 

 

Pretty in Pink

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My current uniform as of lately has been an Aviator Nation hoodie, Alo workout pants, New Balance sneakers, and a soft tee. There’s something comforting about being in soft clothing. As the day goes on I’ll switch to chinos and a cashmere sweater….I haven’t worn jeans in awhile. When the weather warms up in Los Angeles I may switch to a cotton dress like this cheerful one by SZ Blockprints

 

 

Home Sweet Home

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Staying at home this past week has made me appreciate cooking even more, and sitting down and having a meal together as a family. I’ve enjoyed setting the table with nice plates (Year & Day is 25% off at Verishop also check out this), placemats, napkins, napkin rings, and simple flowers from the yard.

To keep busy we have been playing backgammon, making friendship bracelets, and I just ordered a tie-dye kit for the girls (tanktee, & sweatshirt for tie-dying).

Chicken Marsala Recipe

This is one of my classic recipes that I have been making for years. It’s simple, healthy, and delicious. 

Ingredients

  • 1 1/4 pounds boneless pounded chicken breast
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • fresh black pepper
  • 1/2 cup all purpose flour
  • olive oil
  • 1 cup sliced mushrooms
  • 1/2 cup white wine (doesn’t have to be marsala)
  • 1/2 cup veggie or chicken broth 
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley 

Preparation 

If your chicken is not already pounded place chicken between 2 sheets of plastic wrap and pound to about 1/2 inch thick. Spinkle both sides evenly with salt and pepper. Place flour in a shallow dish. Dredge chicken in flour, turning to coat, and shake off excess flour. 

Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. Add chicken cooking until it’s golden brown and then flipping to brown the other side. Remove chicken from the pan. Add mushrooms, wine, broth, and lemon juice to the pan. Reduce heat and simmer for 10 mins until the mixture is reduced to about 2/3 cup. Return chicken to the pan, turning well to coat and cook for an additional 5 mins. Sprinkle with parley and ready to serve. 

Pan in the above picture is the Le Creuset braiser.

 

Reflections

Yesterday marked the 2 year anniversary of my first blog post (Spring Break Swag). It has been a fun two years learning, being creative, and doing something that I love. This has not been a typical week by any means but there are definitely some take-aways. Monday morning I got up early and made it to the grocery store by 7:00 am. I was rushing and a bit panicked trying to get whatever I could at the store. When I walked out of the store I just wanted to get in the car and get out of there as fast as I could. A women in the parking lot rolled down her window, and asked if I could take a picture of the beautiful rainbow and send it to her. She said she didn’t have her phone because she was in such a rush to get out of the house and get groceries. We both took a moment to stop and gaze up at the rainbow which I wouldn’t have done if she hadn’t stopped me. We exchanged numbers and texts and both stopped to enjoy something beautiful in this very stressful time. This week I have stopped and taken time to appreciate the little things I might not have done a week or two ago. 

Now onto some fashion….

SALE ALERT! Nordstrom Rack is offering 20% off sitewide. I picked up several L Space bathing suits for the girls (also found this cute tweed blazer). Lots of great deals to be had at J. Crew including my favorite PJ Set (whole site is up to 35% off). Lastly, I was doing some home essential shopping at Target and got the softest sports bra that was only $12.99. That’s a wrap for the week! 

XOXO

Julie

Caesar is a Crowd Pleaser

This simple eggless Caesar Salad recipe is a crowd pleaser! 

Caesar Salad Dressing 

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup grated parmesan 
  • 1 small garlic glove
  • a couple dashes of Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/8 cup lemon juice
  • 1/8 white wine vinegar 
  • 1 teaspoon of salt
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup canola or grape seed oil 

Combine the first 6 ingredients into your Cuisinart and blend until smooth. Once that’s done slowly add your 1/4 cup olive oil and then the remaining oil. Continue to blend until it’s smooth and emulsified like the above picture. 

I use any leftover french bread or sourdough bread for the croutons. Cut into small size cubes and spread them out on a baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil, salt, and pepper. Toss to coat and bake them in the oven at 325 Fahrenheit until firm and golden brown. 

Chop up your romance lettuce, add your croutons, and dress your salad! 

 

Let’s Get Cozy

The hoodie & jogger set is currently a big trend. Grace from The Stripe was wearing an affordable one from Amazon hoodie & jogger. Jennifer Meyer was sporting a more upscale version from Danzy hoodie & jogger. Target has a tie dye cost friendly version here & here. Lastly, Reformation’s version here & here.

Chili Tonight

fullsizerenderI have been making this slower cooker chili for 18 years it’s based on the Wendy’s recipe (I’ve tweaked a couple of things). It’s so good and easy! It makes a lot so you will have leftovers. A nice way to switch up the leftovers is to serve it over pasta. 

Ingredients 

  • 1 pound ground beef, chicken, or turkey
  • 1 can tomato sauce
  • 1 can kidney beans (with juice)
  • 1 can pinto beans (with juice)
  • 1 cup diced onions
  • 1/4 cup celery chopped
  • 1 1/2 chopped tomatoes
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 1/2 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon of salt
  • a dash of your favorite hot sauce to add some spice

Brown your meat in the skillet. Place your meat in the slow cooker along with all the other ingredients and let it cook for 6-8 hours on low. 

Serve with shredded mexican cheese and your favorite tortilla chip. 

If you don’t have a slow cooker All Clad makes a nice one. All-Clad Slow Cooker Amazon, $179.

 

JW

Happy Hump Day! This hasn’t been a typical week. The kids started remote schooling so we have somewhat of a schedule now. I have been trying to exercise each day,  long walks, at home yoga classes, and a lot of cooking. Yesterday I made a point to get out of my workout clothes and get dressed for the day. It felt really good to get ready even if I was just going to run a couple errands.

I asked my instagram followers what they would like to see on my blog. The results were a mix of fashion and food so that’s what I will continue to do. 

You all know how much I love Leatherology. They make quality accessories for a great price, and I can’t resist a handprinted monogram. Leatherology just sent me the new mini Elizabeth bucket bag. It’s really lightweight with a ton of space inside. It has an interior hook to hold your keys, magnetic closure, and three straps to choose from. It’s a beautiful bag for the price…LOVE!

SALE ALERT! Nordstrom is offering 25% off site wide. Somethings to check out are my favorite Alo workout pants, Aviator Nation sweats, and sweatshirt. Shop the whole site wide sale here.

Shopbop is having an up to 70% off sale. Some things to check out are this Farm Rio Wrap DressXirena Wrap DressXirena Tatum DressBanjanan PJ Set, and Clare V Tote. Shop the whole sale here.

XOXO

Julie

 

 

 

Sweet Treat

 

Peanut Butter Chocolate Bars

Recipe created by Baked with Love By Ivy

Peanut Butter Layer:
2/3 cup rolled oats
1/2 cup peanut butter
2 tsp maple syrup
4 soaked dates (soak them in a hot water for 15-20 minutes)
2 tbsp coconut full fat coconut milk (from the can)
Pinch salt
Chocolate Layer:
6 tbsp full fat coconut milk (from the can)
1/2 cup dark chocolate
2 tbsp shredded coconut (optional but we like the added texture)
2 tbsp cacao nibs (also optional but again nice texture)
Pinch salt
Topping:
1/2 cup dark chocolate
1 tsp coconut oil
Flaky salt to taste (to sprinkle on top)
Directions:
Grease a standard sized loaf pan with coconut oil. Then, line it with parchment paper leaving the sides long so you are able to pull the bars out of the pan when they are finished. You can use a clothespin on each side of the pan to secure the parchment like we did in the picture. In a food processor, grind up oats until they reach a flour like consistency. Add the rest of the peanut butter layer ingredients and blend until smooth. Press the mixture to the bottom of your lined loaf pan and put in freezer to chill while you make your next layer. For the next layer, heat the coconut milk in a medium sized bowl in the microwave for about 45 seconds. While the coconut milk is heating, chop your dark chocolate. Add the dark chocolate to the heated coconut milk and stir until smooth and fully combined. You can always pop it back in the microwave for a few seconds at a time if it is not melted all the way. Stir in the coconut and salt. Pour this layer on top of your peanut butter layer, then sprinkle cacao nibs on top. Let it set in the freezer for 30 minutes. To make the last layer, combine the chocolate and coconut oil in a bowl and heat in the microwave until fully melted. Pour this layer on top of your other two layers. Top with your desired amount of flaky salt. Let the bars set in the freezer for 4-5 hours or overnight. After they are done setting it the freezer, use the parchment on the sides of the pan to release the bars from the loaf pan. Cut into 8 bars. Enjoy!
Notes:
*In the picture we used a half sized loaf pan, so we simply cut the recipe in half. This recipe will make enough for 8 bars and is made perfectly in a standard sized loaf pan.
*Extras can be stored in the freezer.

Lucky You

Happy Saint Patrick’s Day! We can all use some positive energy, good luck, and protection right now. One way to get it is with these beautiful boho Golden State Beauty horseshoe wall hangings. Each horseshoe is custom made by the designer herself Malibu native Krisha Garvey. You can check out her Etsy shop here or custom order them directly through her instagram account here (DM for orders). Hang them on your wall, front door, or display them on your coffee table. Made with love!

Homeward Bound

Homeward Bound

Life this past weekend has changed for many of us. Our busy weekends have now slowed down which means a lot more time spent at home. This weekend consisted of a lot of cooking, long walks, closet organizing, and time spent with my family. I will try and share interesting things I find a long the way and please share with me as well.

  1. Shades of Pink Tablecloth Goop, $285.
  2. Manduka Yoga Block Amazon, $20. I tried a yoga class at home and realized I didn’t have a yoga block. A friend suggested I try an app called Glo which has over 4,000 workout classes on demand.
  3. Falcon Enamelware Bake Set Goop, $115.
  4. Marble Initial Coaster Wiliam Sonoma, $29.95.
  5. Pink Mini Prep Cuisinart Amazon, $32.99.
  6. PJ Salvage Tie Dye Jersey Sweatshirt Nordstrom, $62. It’s been rainy in LA and all I want to wear are cozy sweats.
  7. PJ Salvage Tie Dye Jersey Sweatpants Nordstrom, $62.
  8. Caraway Ceramic Cookware Set Goop, $395.
  9. La Double J Dessert Plates Goop, $350.
  10. Manduka Pro Yoga Mat Amazon, $96.
  11. Clare V x Anthropologie Platter Anthropologie, $58. Also love these dinner plates that just came in.
  12. Wilton Candy Melts Pot Amazon, $24. This came in handy when I made Goop’s Banana Bonbons. We dipped bananas, apricots, and pretzels.  Our toppings consisted of chia seeds, slivered almonds, cacao nibs, and sea salt. Fun project with the kids.

 

 

Oven Baked Chicken Parmesan

Oven Baked Chicken Parmesan 

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 lbs thinly pounded chicken breasts
  • 1 box woven wheat crackers or Triscuits (panko breadcrumbs also work)
  • Fresh basil or italian parsley
  • 1/4 cup parmesan 
  • 1 cup tomato sauce
  • Mozzarella cheese
  • Salt & pepper to taste
  • Olive oil 

Take your woven wheat crackers, parmesan, fresh herbs, salt & pepper, and blend it in a food processor until it resembles fine breadcrumbs. If you are using panko you can skip this step. Pour your bread crumb mixture into a rectangular baking dish. Take your thinly pounded chicken and place it in a bowl. Drizzle it with olive oil until it’s fully coated. Line a baking sheet with brown parchment paper. Take your chicken and dust it with your breadcrumbs until it’s fully covered. Then place it on the baking sheet with parchment. Once all your chicken is breaded place it in the oven at 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Once it’s looking golden brown flip each piece of chicken. When it’s completely cooked, add a little bit of tomato sauce to each piece and sprinkle with mozzarella cheese. Let it cook for a little longer until the cheese is melted and bubbled. 

Vegetarian option substitute cauliflower steak for the chicken. I usually make both since one of my daughters is a vegetarian. 

Trench Talk

Trench

  1. Cropped Trench Coat Cuyana, $325. Love a cropped trench especially with all this rain we are having in LA.
  2. AGOLDE Nico light wash Revolve, $165 dark wash Shopbop, $165.
  3. Ganni Cotton Poplin Puff Sleeve Intermix, $145.
  4. Ray Ban Oversized Square Frames Net-a-Porter, $165. So many cute Ray Bans this season check them all out here.
  5. Sophie Ratner Diamond Charm Studs Goop, $280.
  6. Dream Ballerina Slipper Mansur Gavriel, $375. Love the Hermes orange!