Kitchen Stories & the Heart of Our Home (+ a giveaway!)


As most of you know, we are getting ready to build our own home. We call it our forever home because it’s the house we plan to live in for the rest of our days. Not many people build their house with their own two hands, literally doing all the work, and not many people build one house they plan on living in always. Moving to the middle of nowhere two years ago was our first step in this journey. We soft opened our hardware store this past fall, and now it’s time to work on something for our family Continue Reading →

Carrot Cake Recipe Roundup – so much more than cake!

PicMonkey Collage

I loved those carrot cake pancakes yesterday so much that I thought a delicious carrot cake recipe roundup would be just the thing for today. The more research I did the more I realized that delightful carrot cake flavor is perfect not just in cake but in all kinds of things like smoothies, cookies, muffins, waffles, and more! Enjoy this fun recipe collection and get inspired by all things carrot cake.

Whole Grain Carrot Cake Pancakes with Maple Cream Cheese Whipped Cream (naturally sweetened too!)

carrot cake pancakes2

I’ve been dreaming of carrot cake for weeks now and have been bugging my dad to send me the recipes he loves. While I’ve been waiting on his reply I’ve been making do with a healthy breakfast version of this delicious spring time treat. Whole Grain Carrot Cake Pancakes with Maple Cream Cheese Whipped Cream are the things Easter brunches are made of. These pancakes are full of spices, just the right amount of carrot, and when you top them with a simple maple sweetened cream cheese and whipped cream mixture you’ll think you are eating cake for breakfast. That’s Continue Reading →

Tomato Basil Cheese Crackers

cheese crackers1

When you have fancy cheese in your fridge, sometimes it’s fun to do something a little special with it. Tomato Basil Cheese Crackers where just the thing my brick of Cabot Tomato Basil Cheddar Cheese needed. This stuff is so good and I have my friends at Cabot to thank for sending it to me. They are so generous in their cheese gifts and I love using their products. That Tomato Basil Cheddar is just the kind of treat you need in your life when you are dreaming of summer gardens but still have to wait for the snow to Continue Reading →

6 Ways to Use Swiss Chard

Fresh rainbow chard from the garden

Spring has sprung in lots of locations and if you are like me, you are thinking about all the delicious things that you’ll be planting and harvesting soon. Swiss chard is on my list to plant this week, it’s a great cold hardy vegetable (here’s a post I wrote about vegetables that don’t mind a little cold). So in honor of spring I thought I’d share 6 Ways to Use Swiss Chard.

Spring Gift Guide (because we all need ideas of what to give!)

spring gift guide

I absolutely love it when someone owns a product that they love and they tell me about it, especially when it comes to gift ideas. I have more than one item in my house that was recommended by someone that I know in real life or online that I just love. I wanted to do this sort of thing at Christmas time but I just didn’t get to it. It’s been on my mind for ages now and so here it is. I was totally burnt out on spending after the holiday season and took a nice healthy break from Continue Reading →

How to Test the Freshness of an Egg


Eggs are a really interesting topic to me right now and I thought I would share some egg tips and tricks with you including how to tell the freshness of an egg. Did you know that your average store-bought egg is 3 weeks old but they could very well be months old. Farmers can hold onto eggs for 30 to 90 days before they are shipped off for “packing” (the information that I found for that number varied a lot, so it’s a wide range). Eggs are several more weeks old by they time they are packed, shipped, and then purchased Continue Reading →

How to Store Fresh Asparagus


Asparagus is in season in California right now which means I can get it pretty cheap since we aren’t all that far from the Sunshine State. I have been loving having a seasonal vegetable to cook with! It’s been so very long. Welcome spring. I bought a 3 pound bag at Costco for $3.99 last week and it was beautiful tender asparagus. The only problem? I had 3 whole pounds of it. So I did some research to figure out how to store fresh asparagus the best. I bought the asparagus on Thursday, stored it properly on Friday, and just Continue Reading →

Roasted Red Pepper Hummus

roasted red pepper hummus recipe

Roasted Red Pepper Hummus is my snack right now. I love the sweetness of the peppers with all that creamy savory hummus goodness. It’s fabulous with fresh veggies, but let’s be honest, I love it best with homemade pita chips or even just tortilla chips. I’ve even been using it as a mayo of sorts in my sandwiches. I would spend tons of money on hummus ever month if our grocery store carried it. I love it! Sabra’s roasted pine nut is my all time favorite and I just tried the hummus quartet from Trader Joe’s and it was great Continue Reading →

Spinach and Mushroom Marinara with (or without) Meatballs

Spinach and Mushroom Spaghetti

Growing up my mom bought spaghetti sauce in a jar and that was fine, but I would to beg her to let me “doctor it up”. I would saute all kinds of things like mushrooms, peppers, carrots, and onion, add the jarred sauce, extra seasonings, and a can of diced tomatoes. Just a few little changes made all the difference to that store-bought sauce and I loved making the change. Now that I’m cooking on my own I’ve realized that making pasta sauce from scratch doesn’t take much more effort than “doctoring” that jarred stuff. The idea is the same, but I skip Continue Reading →