Pantry Project Completition

So remember that time I said I was going to use up everything in my pantry?

Well, I did. Kind of.

There’s some leftover tapioca flour and almond meal and powdered sugar. And corn syrup.

But overall, I went from this:

To this:

I finished up all my traditional ingredients (chips, flour, sugar, etc.) with these recipes:

1. Coconut Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies

Recipe adaptions to use what I had:
-6 TBSP coconut oil + 3 TBSP butter (instead of the other way around)
-1/4 c whole wheat/ spelt flour for the cocoa powder
-Butterscotch chips instead of chocolate
-Whole wheat/ spelt flour instead of white
-A chia egg instead of a chicken egg
-Sweetened coconut instead of unsweetened, and therefore
-Elimination of the brown sugar

….somehow I think the actual version of these would taste a whole lot different. Can you believe I took out all the chocolate? Weird. But these were some of the most addictive cookies I’ve ever made. Most of the sweetness comes from the butterscotch chips & coconut, which I think made it easier keep munching (especially when they’re still warm from the over and you’ve eaten all salty things that day….or maybe that’s just my problem..). The oat/wheat flour/coconut texture really made it a winner.

Two peas and their pod have spectacular cookie recipes, for the record. The above came from their site, as did this next one.

2. Mini Rocky Road Cookies

Recipe adaptions to use what I had:
-Whole wheat/ spelt flour instead of white
-Reese’s peanut butter chips instead of white chocolate
-Nuts were elminiated

I mostly chose this recipe because it called for so much cocoa powder (and thus didn’t have enough for the coconut cookies- whoops). We also happened to have mallow bits in the pantry (they’re not quite as good as Lucky Charm marshmellows, if you were wondering). I also didn’t make them mini- because I was in the mist of moving and couldn’t afford to spend any more time baking.

I can honestly say they were the best chocolate cookies I’ve ever had. They were the type of cookies that actually stayed soft after they cooled without tasting stale (you know, like those “Keeber soft” cookies. Anybody?).

And last but not least,

3. Peanut Butter Cookie S’mores Bars

(unfortunately I packed them up and gave them away before I remembered to take a picture, whoops).

Recipe adaptions to use what I had:
-A chia egg (for the cookies)
-Whole wheat/ spelt (also for the cookies)
-6 oz fluff (I thought my jar was bigger for some reason)
-Elimination of the graham cracker crumbs (so they weren’t technically s’mores anymore, I know, I know).
-“Homemade chocolate” instead of Hershey’s bars.

So what is “homemade chocolate”? In this case, it was a combination of all the chocolate related baking stuff I had left that typically goes in chocolate. Specifically, unsweetened baker’s chocolate, cocoa powder (I made the chocolate itself before the coconut cookies), butter, sugar, and agave. It tasted a little weird on its own (I don’t have a double boiler, so melting everything without burning it proved a little difficult), but it went really well with the cookie base.

The edges got a little crisp, and everything melted together kind of oddly (my fault for the major adaptations, I’m sure). But they tasted incredible – and that’s all that really matters (uh, right?).

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Aspirations & Accomplishments

Ed. 2 of drool worthy recipes and things I’m loving:

1.  Tequila Cherry Tomatoes. I did end up making them and and they were amazing. I’m totally making them again (if I have tequila left after this weekend – though it’s kind my birthday weekend though so there’s a distinct possibility my bottle will be empty).

2. Overnight Steel Cut Oats

I got a giant bag of steel cut oats in May at Big Lots. And by giant bag I mean there are 52 servings in it! My only problem with steel cut oats is that they take 20-30 minutes to cook, depending on the brand. I came across this method last week on The Kichcn (which you should be reading if you’re not – they have relevant tips, tricks, and recipes for everything you can think of!). The trick is to soak the oats overnight in milk just like regular overnight oats. It leaves the oats are still kind of chewy because they don’t absorb all the liquid, but honestly, I love the texture. And one tablespoon of chia seeds sops up most of the extra milk. Perfection.

3. This Zucchini Casserole

I mentioned in my last post that I made a casserole. As much as I hate the word casserole, I loved this recipe. My Nanny a whole bunch of zucchini out to Pittsburgh with my mom and I wasn’t sure how to use it all. Then I found this- which called for 6 cups of the stuff. I used less cheese than it called for and I used crushed up matzoh for the bread crumbs (which worked way better than I expected). It also froze/ reheated way better then…well, most things I freeze/reheat.

4. Vegan Caramel Glazed Baked Donuts

I came across these vegan caramel glazed baked donuts this morning. I may have actually drooled on the keyboard. I’ve been following Namely Marly on Pinterest for a while but some reason never checked out her blog. Until today. I cannot  believe what I’ve been missing. She has recipes for southwestern hummus & a vegan Philly Cheezesteak –  and those were just posted in the last few weeks!

5. I’m making brownies for myself for my birthday this year. A pantry version of this from Eat, Live, Run I’m thinking. We’ll see what jumps on the shelf when I get home tonight.

6. When I get a kitchen back, I really want to look into homemade vegan cheeses. The whole idea is really interesting to me. The Naked Kitcten posted this awesome recipe for feta cheese made from tofu. Vegan mac n chz is also on my to-cook list.

7. New food finds!

I discovered these two last weekend. We were getting food for a trip to my friend’s cabin. Apparently I can’t go anywhere without veggie burgers and hummus. I had never even seen either of these flavors before- and they were both incredible! (Especially together- seriously, you can put hummus on almost anything).

There definitely weren’t whole olive in the hummus I bought though.. wtf Sabra? 😉

Alright well I’m going to stop making everyone hungry now. Birthday brownies coming at you soon!

No Bake Cookies (more oats)

Not only are no-bake cookies good for hot days, they super convenient for times when you want to make something but the oven is already occupied. Like the other night, I was making a zucchini casserole (my Nanny had mad squash this year so my mom brought me some- biggest zucchini’s I’ve ever seen). And as soon as I popped it in the oven I was craving cookies. So took a quick look at my pantry project board (I love/hate how much I use Pinterest) and decided to make No Bake Chocolate Almond and Coconut Cookies.

I made a couple of substitutions- Cookie butter instead of almond butter because I was out, and I figured more sugar would be better than sunflower seed butter. I also only had sweetened coconut- which kind of worked out because I didn’t have enough enough honey. I think in total it I used a 1/3 c agave/ honey mixture.

Initially, I was concerned I just made chocolate granola. And while that would have been a little disappointing, I do love me some granola. But after they firmed up in the fridge they were much more cookie-like. They’re also delicious and filling! Yeah, a cookie that’s filling. Not real sweet- but I think that makes them taste more dark chocolate-ly (fine by me any day).

Extra awesome thing about this recipe- I only got two bowls and two measuring cups dirty somehow. Bam. And the entire thing took maybe 20 minutes.

And I didn’t even burn the casserole (which was also tasty, if you were wondering

 

Baked Cherry Oatmeal

With only a handful of exceptions, I have eaten oatmeal in some capacity every day for the last six months. I wasn’t trying The Oatmeal Diet or anything crazy, believe it or not, I actually just really like oatmeal (seriously though look at that diet- it’s like the Special K diet but worse!). There’s something really satisfying about it, and no matter how hungry I am, it always fills me up (for an hour or so, anyway).

To change up my oatmeal addiction, I decided to experiment with baked oatmeal. The first kind I made was this Pumpkin Pie Baked Oatmeal from Budget Bytes. And lemme tell you, It. Was. Bomb. The epitome of dessert for breakfast, really. But I was looking for something that was a little healthier, and a little more breakfast-y. And that’s when I came across Muchin with Muchkin’s Healthy Black Forest Baked Oatmeal.No added sugar, and vegan! Not to mention chocolate.

It took me a while to get around to making them (and the recent heat wave consuming the east coast did NOT help), but I am SO glad I did.

Ingredients:

I used frozen cherries I had in the freezer. The recipe called for chocolate chips, but I was out so I substituted the white chocolate (those obviously weren’t vegan, but I think everything else was!).

Another thing I like about baked oatmeal is the one bowl mixing method. Less dishes makes a dishwasherless girl very happy.

Conveniently, the recipe also only make 6 cakes, so I technically only had to clean one tiny muffin pan. I say technically b/c the first time I spooned the batter into the pan I forgot to spray it. At least I realized it before they went in the oven!

And viola! Unfortunately turning my oven for a half hr increased the temperature in my apartment by 5-10 degrees. Whoops. Though honestly, I was so happy with my breakfast every day this week, it was kind of worth it.

They were delicious cold (which is nice when you break a sweat walking into work from the car – done with the heat complaints now, promise). They didn’t get dry like the pumpkin oatmeal had (a little milk fixed it, but I’m all for enjoying my food with the quickest prep possible, especially in the am). The white chocolate and cherries gave them a perfect level of sweetness (though I barely sweeten my oatmeal – I’d suggest sprinkling them with sugar if you only like sweet oatmeal).

I think I may try a different fruit next time- strawberries maybe? We’ll see. I have plenty of oats to use.