YUMO school party planning baby!
this banana sunday inspo came from a fellow food ambassador's post on healthy treats for valentine's day school parties. thanks stacy!!!
i whipped up some homemade coconut whipped cream just before the party. no need to ever buy from the store again...seriously, angela from oh she glows is oh so right about wanting to stick your entire face in the bowl.
banana coconut cream sundaes
a few globs of coconut cream (this tutorial rocked! i sweetened mine with organic sugar and honey).
the kids were so cute. they loved the sundaes and i also brought some homemade gluten free/dairy free chocolate chip cookies (which continue to blow the minds of everyone who tastes them). they came up one by one, peeled bananas and ordered up their yummy clean sundaes.
i let the kids indulge in their treats for a bit before i started asking some questions. here is my abbreviated class interview:
me: "ok, everybody, can anyone tell me what whipping cream is made from?"
class: (lots of shouts) "the store...cans...candy...ice cream...milk...COWS" bingo
me: "that's right, but i didn't use cow's milk/dairy milk in this whipped cream! what do you think i could have used?"
class: (stupefied faces) "marshmallows...cats....dogs....giraffes..." ok now they're just getting silly...
me: "well, i'll give you a hint: this cream is made from a fruit that grows on a tree."
class: "apples! bananas! pineapples! COCONUTS!" bingo
it was hilarious, crazy adorable and my first mini lesson to kids about food. i'm hooked.
our valentine's day dinner turned out with family-five-thumbs-up...however, i don't know what i was smoking thinking i could bake my own garlic bread and homemade dessert on top of all of this. no way jose! i'm not that good yet.
my niece claire's favorite dish is tikka masala. she is only 2. so when the kids asked me what i was making. that's exactly what i told them: we're having claire's favorite food! they were intrigued & totally willing to try it. welcome to our family's meal plan miss tikka!!! i followed this recipe to a T.
well isn't this a "crowded" pan. i have always done this and i just read a post discussing the most common cooking mistakes. now i know better and will cook in smaller batches next time...learning, lots o learning going on here.
i forgot to snap a picture of the next step. i used my emersion blender and pureed it up to a beautiful smooth sauce just like the recipe describes.
we needed a little green in the mix, so i made our family's favorite greens recipe: baked kale chips. i didn't have a ton of time, so i used the convection setting at 375 degrees and baked them for 15 minutes. perfect. and i didn't burn em this time! (don't forget to dry them really well before rubbing them in evoo. i now keep some old towels in my pantry just for drying off the kale babies:)
i didn't have garam masala in the house, so i tried this blend to substitute. next time i'm going to make my own homemade garam masala recipe and be all proper about it.
millie's cucumber salad - tweeked
3 cucumbers peeled and sliced thin
1/4 c whole coconut milk (she always used sour cream & i'm sure light coconut milk would work fine here too)
1 T apple cider vinegar (or any vinegar you have on hand)
sea salt & freshly ground pepper to taste
*you must use your hand to mix this up. grandma millie taught me that squishing the cucumber slices between your hands tenderizes the pieces, breaks them up a bit and gets the sauce oh so perfect ...so just clean your hands and do it like grandma please. i always feel like she's right next to me when i make this...i even use her cucumber bowl she passed down to me:) oh lovies.
chris and i are in love with little vineyards winery. we surprised my mom on her 60th birthday with a family trip last june to sonoma county. this was by far our favorite winery. my dad asked the repairman who came to our rental home and he sent us there...gotta dig the local's recommendations. the little's are a musical family. they jam out together at wine events and even named one of their most popular blends simply: band blend. here's the quick back story: the band would practice in the barrel room and secretly tap into the wines. haha. when the winemaker realized his blends were being tapped, he made the sneaky band their own barrel and taped a piece of paper on it: "band blend". it was so popular that they now sell it to everyone. but you know what really sucked us in...how warm, wonderful and funny the staff and family was to talk to. we felt like we were at home chatting with great friends.
last night, chris and i shared a petit syrah that was sooooo smooth and went to very well with this dish. have i told you that mr beer-man never ever used to drink wine?
hip hips for a long weekend!
now i gotta clean up my kitchen...and pick up my box o produce.
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