So, I have this idea for a new series of posts. I’m calling it “Website Wednesday.”
If this little series goes according to plan, every Wednesday I will feature one of my favorite food blogs. In my post I’ll list and describe the best recipes I’ve tried from the particular site, give any background information I can offer, and generally sing its praises.
I regularly follow an ever-expanding host of positively brilliant food bloggers. These people consistently concoct culinary creations of incredible beauty and exceptional flavor, and they take astonishingly appealing photographs of what they cook, too. Combining their food content with personal antidotes – from deeply profound to lightheartedly clever – they never cease to amaze me with their ingenuity. The bloggers I will feature are the ones like which I aspire to cook and write. I hope you’ll love them as much as I do.
So, without further fangirl verbosity, I present to you my first feature on Website Wednesday:
I wish I could remember when and how I discovered Eat, Live, Run. I believe it was sometime while I was in Peru, foolishly flipping through pages of food blogs overflowing with delectable dishes I had no way of cooking. Or maybe I found it through Tasty Kitchen, one of my favorite source for recipes of all kinds. Who knows. Regardless, I am very glad I did.
Eat, Live, Run is written by Jenna, a happy-looking, blonde Le Cordon Bleu graduate living in California. Her posts are full of bubbling enthusiasm for yoga, for whatever she’s cooked lately, for life, and for food photography. If you need proof of her passion for any of those pursuits, I would recommend her book, White Jacket Required. I asked for and received it for Christmas. It’s an easy read that describes Jenna’s decision to attend culinary school, details some of her adventures therein, and explains how her decisions and a personal tragedy brought her to where she is today. I breezed through it in a few hours, and finished with a better picture of the person behind some of the food I like best.
Speaking of the food I love, the food on Eat, Live, Run is a good balance: healthy entrées and sides full of vegetables as well as decadent cakes and cookies baked with the perfect amount of butter and flour. And whatever the dish, the flavor is always perfect – I think that’s Jenna’s greatest cooking talent: her feel for flavor.
Here are the recipes from Eat, Live, Run that have made it into my “favorites” food folder:
- Graham Cracker Torte: I’m pretty sure that this is the first ELR recipe I ever made. It blew my mind. It’s a cake made with crushed graham crackers, layered with rich whipped cream, and drizzled with caramel sauce with a hint of orange. Whoa, is it good. I’ve made it two or three times, and each time my brothers or myself have carefully cleaned the cake plate with our fingers to make sure not one drop of that incredible caramel sauces goes to waste. Also, I leave short notes to myself about recipes I’ve tried; the note for this one tells it all: AMAAAZING!
- Thai Red Curry with Kabocha Squash: This creamy curry is bursting with limey flavor. I simplify the recipe a bit when I make it – butternut instead of kabocha squash; eggplant instead of tofu; lime zest instead of kaffir lime leaves and thai basil – but I keep coming back. It’s just so good.
- Dairy-Free Stuffed Shells: This is one of Jenna’s recipes that was posted on PBS’s food blog, for which she writes (such a cool job!). I love the creaminess of the shell filling and so does my family. You’d never guess that the shells are stuffed with tofu rather than cheese. Simply brilliant. The only thing I’d change is the amount of salt – it’s a bit too salty.
- Whole Wheat Chocolate Chip Sweet Potato Pancakes: Another repeat winner here. I made these in California during my jobternship and then again several times since I returned. Sweet potato and chocolate is a combination to die for, especially in a pancake. Of course, I use all whole wheat flour instead of half white as the recipe calls for.
- Tofu Banh Mi: This marinated tofu sandwich is a tasty combination of Asian-inspired sauces and slaws piled on crusty bread. It was just plain good. Even my dad liked it, and he first tried it back in the days when he was exceedingly skeptical about tofu. He’s come to accept it since then, thankfully.
- Greek Yogurt Cheesecake with Peaches and Honey: This is recipe holds the special place as the only cheesecake that I can honestly say that I like. I dislike the combination of sweet and cream cheese, so naturally I dislike all cheesecake. Since this one is made with greek yogurt, though, I can finally enjoy both wonderful versatility of cheesecake and the flavor! Plus, it’s not so dense, so you can eat a bigger slice. Hurray! When I made this over Christmas break I topped it with a cranberry-raspberry compote instead of peaches and honey. Everyone at our New Year’s Eve party loved it.
- Crock Pot Pork and Apples: I made this also while over Christmas break and was immensely pleased with it. I had told Mom I would make dinner but was leaving for an afternoon of running errands, so I threw the ingredients in the crock pot in less than 15 minutes, turned it on high, and returned home several hours later with my main dish already cooked and waiting. The apples and onions had softened to sweet perfection and the meat – I used some of our goat steaks – was incredibly tender. And everything had the slightest tang of mustard. Yum!
- Elvis Granola: This granola. Oh man. It is pure peanut butter deliciousness. With chocolate. Oh yesss. I can’t stop making it. Last semester, when I had no access to peanut butter for a couple of months, it was my peanut butter stand-in. And when a sudden chocolate craving hit me the other day, this granola saved me again: I picked the dark chocolate chips out of it to satisfy my chocolate need. This semester it has a permanent place in the rotation of granolas I bring from home and eat for breakfast. The only thing I change when I make is to use applesauce instead of canola oil and to add a bit more peanut butter. You guys, you have to try this. You must.
Elvis Granola from Eat, Live, Run.
There you have it, people: my first Website Wednesday feature. I really do hope you’ll go check out Eat, Live, Run, if by some miracle you haven’t heard of it already. I love that site dearly.
Also, I apologize – sort of, not really – for the astonishing amount of alliterations that abound in this post, especially near the beginning. I don’t know what overcame me, but it sure was fun.