A salad and some cookies, lucky you

In past posts I’ve talked a lot about how much I like to cook, but I’ve never actually shared any recipes. I don’t know if it’s that I’m feeling particularly generous right now, or if I’m just waiting for my nail polish to dry (which is apparently my new thing)… or if I’m just sick of hearing myself talk about my life – but I’ve got two wonderful recipes for the interwebs tonight. And I’m pretty proud of them, because they are both entirely original creations. I had the house to myself this weekend, so I took full liberty to blast my Aretha Franklin and turn the kitchen into a complete mess. As you all know, I am absolutely horrible at naming things – it stresses me out, and I usually end up with a case of instant regret as soon as I come up with something – therefore do not judge the names of these creations. And if I happen to call them by something else later on, just pretend you didn’t notice.

Sarah’s Summer Roasted Potato & Carrot Salad (serves 4)

So I had these really awesome potatoes, and I was trying to think of fun ways to use them. Given that it’s the middle of summer and insanely hot, the first thing my mind jumped to was a good old potato salad. Then, I thought about ALL the MAYONNAISE. Not happening. So instead, I made up this beauty which can be served at room temperature or chilled. It’s definitely a far cry from your typical southern potato salad, but it has a fresh, kickin’ flavor, awesome colors, and is much healthier.

12-15 small purple/blue potatoes (I think mine were purple peruvian or all blue) sliced into wedges (I did sixths)

3 large carrots either thickly sliced or cut into matchsticks

1 shallot, nearly minced

1 clove garlic, minced

6 sprigs each of thyme and parsley, leaves removed and finely chopped

1/3 cup sliced almonds

2 tbs olive oil

1 tbs truffle oil (If you don’t have any you can use all olive, but I recommend it!)

2 tsp balsamic vinegar

1-2 tsp dijon mustard

kosher salt and cracked pepper to taste

To begin, preheat the oven to 400, and line two baking sheets with parchment paper (oil the sheets if you have none). Slice your potatoes and carrots, and spread evenly on separate sheets. Bake the potatoes for around 30 minutes, adding the carrots in for the last 15. Once they’re both done, transfer to a serving bowl, stir in 1 tbs of your olive oil, and put them in the fridge for an hour or so – this salad is best at room temperature.

Now toast your sliced almonds and set aside so they get a chance to cool as well.

Prepare the dressing, mixing together the rest of the oil, the vinegar, and the dijon. Add your dressing to the potatoes and carrots. Chop your shallot and garlic clove and throw those in too.

Right before serving, stir in your freshly chopped herbs and toasted almonds. Don’t forget the salt and pepper. Enjoy!

Unfortunately I did not take a picture of this salad… which means many people will not try it. Your loss, folks, your loss. I did however take a picture of some fries I made earlier in the week with the same potatoes, so you can kind of get an idea?

Note: not the salad.

Everything Banana Bread Pudding Drops (makes 28)

These, my friends, are like no cookie I have ever made. Why? They have no flour, no sugar, they’re vegan, and they are almost fat-free. GROSS, I know. But they’re actually REALLY delicious. The texture is kind of like bread pudding (hence the name) – very moist and chewy, but not at all grainy. I call them everything drops because you could probably load them up with anything you want, and it would be awesome. I chose dried cherries, chocolate chips, and pecans – but I can imagine some other really fabulous options. In fact, I’ll probably try some out pretty soon.

1 and 2/3 medium to large bananas, ripe and mashed

1/2 c applesauce

1 and 1/8 c quick oats

1/4 cup almond milk

1/2 tsp vanilla

1/2 tsp cinnamon

pinch of salt

pinch of baking soda

4 tbs vegan mini chocolate chips

1/4 c dried cherries, finely chopped

3 tbs finely chopped pecans

Preheat your oven to  350 and chop/mash away! Dried cherries are too big whole, so I definitely recommend cutting them up to currant size. So uh… now you basically just mix everything together. Line some baking sheets with parchment paper, and use a tablespoon to drop batter onto the sheet. Bake for 15 minutes and let cool (but only a little bit).

They didn’t photograph so great… but still, yum.

Well I just feel like a little June Cleaver now.

Some other things I’ve made recently:

A peach cobbler that elicited this reaction.

Dinner for my mom’s birthday.

I didn’t make these… but I DID get them at the farmer’s market.

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