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Gluten Free Pancake Crash Course

So now that you’ve had this container of gluten-free flour mix sitting in your cupboard for the better part of a month, are you ready to do something with it?

That’s right, after yet another (and even longer) blogging hiatus, we have returned and this time we come bearing gifts…

And by gifts we mean pancakes, of course!

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Because here at Two Saucy Sisters, we believe that thick, fluffy pancakes should be accessible to everyone- including our gluten-free friends! ūüôā

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We decided to go with a basic, plain pancake recipe here to allow you guys to have some fun with it and add whatever you want to them. ¬†Chocolate chips, blueberries, cinnamon and raisins, or maybe for the more adventurous you want to try adapting some of our other pancake recipes- how about banana nut? Strawberry Shortcake? ¬†Pumpkin Gingerbread? ¬†Or why not Chocolate-Banana Upside Down pancakes? ¬†Are you drooling yet? ūüėČ

Of course, we couldn’t just have plain pancakes for breakfast (where’s the fun in that?) so, in the spirit of Fall, we topped ours with a little pear-apple concoction!

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Cinnamon, pears, apples, raisins and a splash of maple syrup goes a looong way, people!

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But before you go running to your kitchen to make these, let’s have a little chat about gluten-free baking. ¬†Well, okay, we suppose making pancakes isn’t exactly baking, per se, but it’s close enough, in our opinions!

The main thing to remember when adapting a recipe to use gluten free flour is that different types of flours have different liquid-holding capacities, so always cut back on the liquid by at least a third, then gradually add liquid in until you’ve reached the consistency you want. ¬†Which leads us to rule #2: when using gluten-free flour, your batter should be thicker than when using standard white or whole-wheat flour. ¬†This is especially true for pancakes if you want them to be thick and fluffy, which is obviously what¬†everyone¬†wants in a good pancake!

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Lastly, you will notice that we added a bit of coconut flour to the batter. ¬†This is not¬†entirely¬†necessary (in fact, our first trial didn’t use it) but it really does help make the pancakes thicker and fluffier. ¬†If you`re worried about a coconutty flavour, fear not because the small amount we’ve added doesn’t change the taste one bit! ¬†Coconut flour is also really easy to find (in Canada you can get it at the Bulk Barn). ¬†But if you decide to leave it out, you may want to cut back on the liquid slightly.

Anyways, now that you’ve been given a crash-course on gluten free pancake making, we hope you enjoy our recipe, and have fun adding all sorts of yummy add-ins to them! ūüôā

Gluten-Free Basic Pancakes

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Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Serves: 2

Ingredients:

2/3 c. High-fibre gluten-free flour blend
2 tbsp coconut flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp cinnamon

1 egg, beaten
1/2 c. milk of choice (add more if necessary)
1/2 tsp vinegar
1 tbsp maple syrup or honey
1 tsp vanilla extract

Directions:

Pre-heat a non-stick skillet or pancake griddle over medium-high heat.

In a medium-sized bowl, combine all the dry ingredients.  Combine the wet ingredients in a separate, small bowl.  Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and stir until just combined.

Drop spoonfuls of batter onto the pan (we found these worked better if we made them a little smaller). ¬†Once you see bubbles start to form and the edges begin to cook, flip and cook for another 2-3 minutes. ¬†Keep warm while cooking the remaining batter. ¬†Top with fruit, maple syrup, nuts, or whatever else you’d like! ¬†(Our recipe for the apple-pear “sauce” is below!)

Apple-Pear “Sauce”

1 apple, diced
1 pear, diced
1 tbsp corn starch or arrowroot flour
1 tsp cinnamon
3 tbsp raisins
1 tbsp maple syrup
1/4 c. water

Directions:

Add all ingredients except water to a small pot and stir to combine.  Add the water and bring to a boil.  Cook on high for 2-3 minutes, stirring frequently.  Turn the heat to low and simmer, stirring every couple minutes, until the apples and pears are cooked and the sauce has thickened.

~twosaucysisters

Have you ever tried adopting a recipe to be gluten-free?  What was challenging about it?

Rockin’ and Rollin’

We’re pretty sure it has been¬†ages¬†since we’ve talked about pancakes over here- did you think we had given up eating them?

Of course, that would crazy talk!  Who in their right mind would ever give up eating pancakes?

Not us, that’s for sure! ¬†Rest assured, there has been no shortage of pancakes over here, but our pancakes have been looking a little different lately…

You see, we’ve discovered a new way to make pancakes, and quite frankly we may never eat them any other way ever again!

Ladies and gentlemen, we give you the pancake parfait roll-up!

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Seriously people, this is a genius idea! ¬†It’s a fruit-and-yogurt parfait all wrapped up in a thick, fluffy pancake- does it get any better than that?

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This recipe is inspired by an episode of Diners, Drive-Ins and¬†Dives¬†seen while doing hamstring curls at the gym. ¬†That’s right, we watch foodie shows while lifting weights…

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Unfortunately there was no sound to accompany the show¬†(yes, we watch silent foodie shows while lifting weights…)¬†so we have no idea what restaurant was being featured and cannot properly give credit to whoever came up with this fantastic idea.

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But we can share it with the world!

So what is so great about a pancake roll-up? ¬†It takes about¬†half¬† the time of regular pancakes! ¬†Think about it- one giant pancake vs. making a whole bunch of small ones? ¬†Some of you cool kids might have one of those awesome pancake griddles that have enough space to cook a million pancakes all at once, but for those of us who don’t, this is a huge time-saver!

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And the faster you can cook pancakes, the sooner you can eat them. ¬†And of course, fluffy pancake + creamy yogurt + sweet fruit + crunchy granola = breakfast heaven. ūüôā

So go make use of all the delicious fruit that is hitting its prime right now, and make yourself this to-die-for breakfast- you may never eat pancakes the same way again!

Pancake Parfait Roll-Up

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Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Serves: 2

Ingredients:

2/3 c. whole wheat flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp cinnamon (optional)

1 egg, beaten
2/3 c. buttermilk
1 tbsp maple syrup

1 c. yogurt
1 c. fruit of choice
3/4 c. granola

Directions:

Preheat a large frying pan sprayed with cooking spray.

Combine the dry ingredients in a medium-sized bowl.  In a separate bowl combine the wet ingredients.  Add the wet ingredients to the dry and stir until just combined.  Divide the batter in half and pour onto the frying pan.  Cook for 2-3 minutes, or until bubbles begin to form on the surface and the edges begin to firm.  Flip and cook for another 2 minutes, then remove to a plate.  Repeat with the rest of the batter.

Spread the pancake with yogurt then sprinkle with fruit and granola.  Roll up and top with the rest of the yogurt, fruit and granola.  Drizzle with a little maple syrup if desired.

~twosaucysisters

Do you ever watch the T.V. at the gym? ¬†Have you ever seen a recipe from a T.V. show that you’ve tried recreating? ¬†How did it turn out?

Muffin Fix

Muffins are our answer to everything.

Need a quick lunch snack? Muffins.
Want a light breakfast?  Muffins.
Packing for a road trip? Muffins.
Bored?  Why not do some baking to pass the time?  Why not bake muffins?

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Our other answer to everything is chocolate and peanut butter.  Obviously.

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We don’t want to be redundant, or predictable, but our craving for chocolate and peanut butter is just never quite satisfied. ¬†And we were baking these to share with a friend¬†who’s favourite flavour combo also happens to be chocolate and peanut butter, so in our minds the decision was already made!

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So in case you haven’t guessed already, these are chocolate peanut butter muffins.

Make that chocolate peanut butter swirl with chocolate and peanut butter chips.

Whaddup.

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These little beauties are truly¬†decadent. ¬†And they’re the perfect snack to bring along for post-race snacking, Toronto road-tripping, beach-bumming and post-night-out-breakfasting. ¬†All of which took place in a span of 24 hours this past weekend.

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So the real question is: can you ever have too many muffins?  No, no you cannot.  We suppose the other question is: can you ever have enough chocolate and peanut butter?  Again, the answer is no.  And these little snacks are the perfect marriage between the two.  Win-win!

Chocolate Peanut Butter Swirl Muffins

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Prep Time: 20 minutes
Bake time: 20-25 minutes
Makes: 19-24 muffins (depending on the size)

Ingredients:

For the Chocolate Batter:

1.5 cups whole wheat flour
1/2 c. all purpose flour
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 c. white sugar
1/4 c. cocoa powder
1 egg, beaten
1 egg white
1 c. milk of choice
1 tsp vinegar
1/2 c. unsweetened applesauce
1/4 c. plain yogurt
1/4 c. honey
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 c. peanut butter chips

For the Peanut Butter Batter:

1.5 c. whole wheat flour
1/2 c. all purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 c. white sugar
1 egg. beaten
1 egg white
1 c. milk
1 tsp vinegar
1/2 c. apple sauce
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 c. peanut butter
1/2 c. semi-sweet chocolate chips.

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 350F.  Spray two muffins pans with non-stick cooking spray.

In two large bowls, combine the dry ingredients for both batters separately. In two separate smaller bowls, combine the wet ingredients for both batters separately.  Pour the wet ingredients for each batter into the bowls of dry ingredients. (You will have two bowls with two different batters).  Stir both bowls just until everything is combined and there are no dry spots.  Gently stir the chocolate chips into the peanut butter batter and the peanut butter chips into the chocolate batter.

Place a spoonful of the chocolate batter into each of your muffins tins, only filling the muffin tin about 1/3-1/2 full with the chocolate.  Now go along and top the chocolate batter with a spoonful of peanut butter batter.

Using a butter knife, gently swirl the two batters together.  Bake for 20-25 minutes, until the muffins are firm yet still soft.

~twosaucysisters

Do you like muffins?  When you have to make snacks, what are your go-to favourites?

Waffle Hause

So, yesterday our kitchen turned into a bit of a waffle-making factory.

You see, yesterday was an extremely beautiful day in these parts! ¬†It was sunny and warm with a light breeze- perfect for spending an afternoon outdoors (and maybe getting our tan on?) ūüėČ

But we had a race yesterday evening, which meant no sitting in the sun for us!  Talk about torture, right?

So what do you do when you need to distract yourself from the gorgeous weather and the desire to spend the whole day outside?  You make waffles, obviously.  Lots and lots of waffles.

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Why make such a large batch of waffles?  Because you can freeze them and then have fresh, homemade toaster waffles whenever you feel like it!  How great is that?

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Not that we have a problem whipping up a quick batch of waffles on any given morning, but who doesn’t love just popping them in the toaster to have homemade waffles ready in just minutes?

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No muss, no fuss, just light, crispy waffles ready to be topped with whatever your heart desires!

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Strawberries and cream?  Bananas and peanut butter? Berry compote?  These are such a neutral-tasting waffles that you could basically do anything you wanted!  The possibilities are endless!

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And hey, if you just want to go the classic route and throw a little butter and maple syrup on there, we won’t judge ūüėČ

So we didn’t exactly get to enjoy the beautiful weather, but at least now we have a freezer full of waffles, right?

Big Batch Buttermilk Waffles

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Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 35-40 minutes
Makes: 14 large waffles

Ingredients:

3 c. whole wheat flour
3 tsp baking powder
1.5 tsp baking soda
1-2 tsp cinnamon
3 eggs, whisked
2 cups buttermilk
1/4 c. maple syrup (or other liquid sweetener)
2 tsp vanilla extract

Directions:

Preheat your waffle iron.

In a large bowl combine all the dry ingredients. ¬†In a separate bowl combine all the wet ingredients. ¬†Add the wet to the dry and stir until just combined. ¬†Spoon the batter even onto the waffle iron. ¬†Close the lid and allow to cook for 4-5 minutes, or until the waffle is lightly browned and firm to the touch. (Times may very depending on how hot your iron is, so keep you eye on ’em!)

The key to getting a nice, crispy waffle is not putting too much batter on the iron at once. ¬†You don’t want it to be too thin, either, but over-loading the plates will make it difficult to get a crispy waffle.

Repeat the process until all the waffles are done. ¬†Lay the waffles out and allow them to cool. (As some of the first ones start to cool you can start to stack others on top of them with wax paper between each waffle). ¬†Once the waffles are cool, place them in an air-tight ziplock bag, keeping the wax paper in between them. ¬†If they start to get a little soft as they sit, don’t worry because you’ll be toasting them later.

When you want to eat them, remove however many you want from the freezer and pop them straight into the toaster.  Then top with whatever you like!

~twosaucysisters

Do you like waffles? What are your favourite waffle toppings?

1 Year Recap: Recipe Round-Up

In light of our recent one-year blogiversary celebration, we thought it would be appropriate to do a recipe round-up of some (emphasis on the “some”) of our favourite/most popular recipes from this past year. ¬†Since we can’t just choose a few, though, we’ve broken it down into categories. ¬†Enjoy!

Breakfast

Since breakfast is pretty much our favourite meal of the day, we had a lot of trouble choosing our favourite recipes, but here are the ones that made the cut:

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Chocolate-Banana Upside-down Pancakes

We made these for a crowd a few weeks ago when our family had a giant garage sale along with a few other types of pancakes, but these were the hands-down favourite.  This just confirms in our minds that everyone loves chocolate, peanut butter and banana.

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Banana-Stuffed French toast with English “Cream”

After making this stuffed french toast recipe, we’re not sure if we can ever eat regular french toast ever again. ¬†And as if that’s not enough, we also have a blueberry-lemon version and an apple pie version to satisfy all your stuffed french toast needs!

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Banana Waffles

If pancakes aren’t your thing, well, you’re crazy, but maybe the satisfying toasty crunch of waffles is more up your alley? Regardless, you should make these right away. ¬†Added bonus- make these in the morning and your house will smell like delicious waffles right through into the afternoon!

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Orange Strawberry Banana Pancake in a Jar

Ever since our very first peanut butter banana pancake in a jar,¬†we’ve made countless varieties of the genius creation, but this particular version quickly rose to the top as one of our favourites. ¬†Probably because it’s so pretty- just look at those bright colours!

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Red Velvet Buckwheat Bake 

We love buckwheat bakes, but not only was this one of our all-time favourite versions, this was definitely a reader favourite too! ¬†And who doesn’t want to eat red velvet cake for breakfast?

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Peach Raspberry Overnight Oats Parfait

Summer is on it’s way, which means so is summer fruit! ¬†You can be sure that overnight oats parfaits will be on the breakfast menu for us now that the weather is warming up, and as soon as peach season hits we’ll be re-making this wondrous parfait!

Lunch

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Pizza Crepes

It’s pizza¬†and¬†a crepe at the same time. ¬†What more needs to be said?

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Szechuan Chickpea Patties

Peanutty chickpea goodness all wrapped up in one delicious vegetarian burger. Yum!DSCN5182

Chipotle Chicken Wraps

Creamy spicy chicken inspired by one of our favourite on-the-go store-bought lunches.  A healthier version of an old stand-by?  Yes please!

Dinner

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Baked Salmon with Strawberry Basil Rice Pilaf and Strawberry Avocado Salsa

This dish is summery, pretty, healthy and delicious. ¬†You really can’t ask for anything more now can you?

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Caramelized Onion BBQ Chicken Pizza

Pizza is the perfect food. ¬†And if it’s possible to improve on perfection, then this pizza definitely did! ¬†We loved it, our family loved it- ladies and gents, we have a winner!

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Noodle Bowl

Countless variations of these were consumed to ward off the chill during the extra-long winter we had this year.  Highly recommended when you find yourself in need of a comforting bowl of warmth on a cold winter night!

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Slow-Cooker Pulled Pork

We do not love pork, but we¬†love¬†this meal! ¬†But if pork really isn’t your thing, maybe pulled chicken would suit you better?

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Sweet Potato Mango Lentil Curry

Nothing beats a hearty bowl of curry, but this meatless variety that’s full of veggies, sweet potatoes and chunks of sweet mango really takes the cake!

Sides

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Caper Cranberry Tapenade

These sweet-and salty crisps are perfect for a little appetizer. ¬†Highly recommended for all those summer dinner parties you’re planning on having ūüėČ

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Home Fries

Everyone loves home fries, and these ones use a simple trick to make them nice and crispy every time.

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Easy Greek Salad

Even if you’re not having a Greek-themed feast you should make this salad! ¬†Tangy and colourful, it’s a nice break from a traditional garden side-salad.

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Slow-Cooker Baked Beans

Baked Beans in the slow cooker are an easy way to enjoy the tasty side dish with hardly any effort.

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Roasted Fall Veggie Salad

Roasted vegetables are one of the best things in the world- no exaggeration! And yes, we realize that asparagus is not a Fall vegetable, but that is a minor detail.  We made a roasted vegetable salad and it was the Fall, ergo Roasted Fall Veggie salad.

Dips/Spreads

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Apple Butter

Quite possibly one of the easiest recipes in the entire world with only four ingredients and two steps (ok 3 if you count chopping the apples).  And no added sugar- just pure apple-y goodness!

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Salsa Chipotle Hummus

Obviously you knew a hummus recipe was bound to make it on to our list. ¬†And to be honest, we put up this recipe not because it’s our favourite, but more as a representation of¬†all¬†our hummus recipes, because how can you really choose just one when they’re all incredible? ¬†You can’t.

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Beet and Feta Bean Dip

Ok, so this dip is very similar to a hummus recipe- but it is¬†so good that it needed to be recognized all on its own. ¬†Even if you don’t like beets we bet you would like this dip! ¬†It doesn’t really taste like beets, and it has an amzing bright pink colour. ¬†Who¬†wouldn’t¬†want to eat bright pink food?

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Chai-Spiced Blueberry Jam

Fresh blueberry jam with a spicy twist.  Slather on toast, pancakes, waffles, or eat straight from the jar with a spoon.  However you go about it- you must try this jam!

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Cafe Latte Almond Butter

Its a rich, creamy almond butter that tastes like coffee- Java lovers unite!

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Vegan Cheese Sauce

This sauce is so good you’ll want to put it on everything. ¬†And we promise no one will ever know there’s no cheese in it.

Snacks

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Fig Newtons

These are the best when you need a quick pre-run snack, or you need something small to tie you over until your next meal. ¬†And they’re whole wheat, sugar-free, and delicious!

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Kale Chips

Quite possibly the most addicting snack ever.

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Chocolate Chip Lentil Granola Bars

Want a hearty, chewy granola bar?  Add lentils- simple as that.

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Roasted Chickpeas

If you’re in need of a crunchy snack, nothing will satisfy that craving better than these chickpeas. ¬†We recommend you never allow your pantry to be without a jar of them.

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Lemon Coconut Muffins

Muffins are always fantastic snacks, and these ones are some of the softest, most pillow-like muffins we’ve ever had. ¬†The lemon adds some zing and makes them almost refreshing, if it’s possible for a muffin to be that way!

Desserts

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Chocolate Fudge Black Bean Brownies

We’ve had several people make this recipe and rave about it! ¬†But if you’re in the gluten-intolerant crowd, never fear, our gluten-free red velvet brownies are sure to squash any brownie craving.

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Chewy Ginger Snaps

Don’t wait for the Christmas season to make these, they’re too tasty to only have once a year!

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Pumpkin Rice Pudding

Here’s another one that should not be held off until the appropriate season. ¬†Because really, is there truly a season for delicious, thick and creamy rice pudding? ¬†We like to think that sort of thing is a year-round treat.

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Vegan Zucchini Bread Cheese Cake

Who ever said vegans can’t have cheesecake has clearly never tried vegan cheesecake. ¬†Oh well, their loss!

We also want to give honourable ¬†mention to our chocolate cake from our anniversary post. ¬†We didn’t include it in today’s round-up because we just wrote about it, but it needed to be mentioned!

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So there you have have it- quite possibly the longest post ever written, but maybe the most delicious? ūüėČ

We hope you find something on this round-up that catches your eye, and that you have been enjoying the recipes we’ve been posting all year. ¬†If there’s something that you’d like us to make, please feel free to leave a comment or send us an email (twosaucysistas@gmail.com) – we love hearing from you!

Cheers to a great year!

~twosaucysisters

See a Need, Fill a Need

Does anyone remember the movie Robots?

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There was one line from that movie that always stuck with us- it was Rodney’s motto, “See a need, fill a need!” ¬†Don’t you think that’s a great rule to live by? ¬†We sure do, and that’s what we try to do when we create recipes. ¬†Find out what people want and need and make a recipe that fulfills those requirements.

And that is precisely how these muffins came to be…

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You see, a family member of ours recently underwent knee surgery (Heather, I think you’ll be able to relate to this…) and has been on some serious pain meds for the past few days. ¬†Anyone who has ever had to go through this kind of thing before knows what kind of side effects medications like these can have…

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To put it a little more eloquently, this family member of ours has been experiencing some… difficulty with, you know… “moving things along”.

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The pain killers combined with the fact that he’s pretty well couch-ridden and can’t do a whole lot of moving around to (ahem) “shake things out” has left him with a little difficulty staying, well,¬†regular.

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This family member is also used to being very active, so now that he’s being faced with several months of significantly decreased amounts of exercise, he’s also put in a request that sweets and unhealthy snacks be kept at minimal levels around the house. ¬†(Did we also mention that this particular individual has quite the sweet tooth, and is somewhat lacking in will power? ;))

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He also likes to snack. ¬†A lot. So we knew what we had to do- create a snack that’s full of fibre, but is low in sugar, and unhealthy fats, and of course it has to taste good, too!

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And thus, the super high-fibre date n’ raisin mini-muffin was created! ¬†We decided to make these mini, because that way if he feels like he needs a little snack, he doesn’t have to commit to eating an entire muffin. ¬†But of course, these would be just as delicious if they were full-sized, all you’d have to do is bake them a little longer!

So what makes these high fibre? ¬†They have wheat bran, oat bran, rolled oats, and whole wheat flour. ¬†They also have dates and raisins, which are also good sources of fibre. ¬†So when all’s said and done, one of these mini muffins has 2 grams of fibre, which, considering their size, is quite a bit! ¬†And if you were to make them into large muffins, they’d be about 3 times the size, which would put them at about 6 grams per muffin!

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You could even amp-up the fibre content even more by adding some ground flax seeds and chopped almonds to these muffins- something we would’ve done if we hadn’t been all out!

And as for the taste? ¬†Well, we realize that you don’t often hear people saying “yummm… fibre…” but we promise you will love these! ¬†Everyone in our family loved these- in fact, we just made these yesterday, and we’re already thinking we’ll have to make another batch pretty soon…

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Mmmm fibre! ūüôā

Date-Raisin Mini Muffins

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Prep time: 15min
Bake time: 10-12min
Makes: 30 mini muffins

Ingredients:

1 c. whole wheat flour
1 c. bran
1/2 c. oat bran
1/2 c. oats
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp salt

1 egg
1/2 c. yogurt (any kind will do, we used strawberry!)
1 c. milk of choice
1 tsp white vinegar
1/4 c. maple syrup

1/2 c. dates
1/2 c. raisins

Directions:

Pre-heat oven to 350F.
Combine milk and vinegar and set aside for 5min (to make “butter milk”).
In a large bowl, combine the dry ingredients. In a separate bowl, combine the wet, only adding the milk after having sat for 5 min.
Pour wet ingredients into the dry along with the dates and raisins and stir until just combined.
Fill greased mini-muffin tins with the batter.
Bake for 10-12 minutes.

~twosaucysisters

Have you ever had a surgery and experienced difficult side effects after wards? What did you do to overcome those difficulties?

We’re Baaaack! (And we Brought Chocolate)

Hi everybody! Long time no-see!

Some of you have probably been wondering where we’ve been the last few days, since it’s been a¬†full week since we last posted, but we promise we haven’t suddenly given up blogging, and we have good reasons as to why we’ve been missing in action. ¬†Well really, we have one reason, and it is that we’ve been¬†crazy¬†busy this past week! ¬†Ok, so we realize that’s a somewhat lame excuse, but perhaps if we give you a run-down of our lives these last few days you’ll have a better understanding…

Tuesday: Exam #3 (nailed it, by the way ;))
Wednesday: Exam #4 (last exam of the year- hellooo summer!)
Thursday: Mini road trip to Toronto to celebrate a couple of birthdays with a chocolate-making party (yes, that happened- more on that later)
Friday:¬†Mini road-trip home from Toronto then PACK. (We’re moving houses for the next school year- it’s amazing how much random and useless stuff you accumulate after only two years in a place!)
Saturday: Up super early to volunteer all day at a track meet, rush home and quickly pack up last-minute stuff, throw it in the van and rush home to baby sit.
Sunday:¬†Spring cleaning/un-packing (read: gut all cupboards, closets, and bedroom, get rid of¬†everything¬†you don’t need/use/wear and then fill them all back up again with stuff from London house)

So, as you can see we’ve been a little pre-occupied with life these last few days- some of it boring, some fun, and some completely overwhelming and exhausting! ¬†In fact, neither one of us has hardly been on our computers at all! ¬†We’ve missed Simple Sunday,¬†and¬†Heather’s Meatless Monday (sorry, Heather…) but now that our lives are starting to settle down somewhat, we will be back to a more regular posting schedule.

And as a sort-of apology for our prolonged absence, we bring you chocolate!

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Chocolate pumpkin bread, to be more precise. ¬†And yes, we know that making pumpkin bread this time of year is completely out of season. ¬†The thing is, that if we didn’t¬†tell¬†you there was pumpkin in this loaf you would never know it! ¬†So it’s really more like chocolate bread, and is chocolate ever out of season? ¬†(The answer would be no, it is not)

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And while we’re on the topic of chocolate, we think that this is the perfect time to fill you in on the chocolate-making party we attended in Toronto. ¬†(Pretty good segue, don’t cha think? ;)) ¬†A couple of the girls on the team have birthdays right around the same time, so we decided to combine them and move our celebration to Toronto for a fun little change of scenery. ¬†One of the girls found this amazing business that sends a Chocolatier to your home and teaches you and your guests how to make chocolate!

First, our lovely instructor Cocoa Kelley (don’t you love that name?) gave us a brief history on chocolate. ¬†It was first made by the Ancient Incas and Myans, who used the cocoa beans to make a drink called “Chocolotal” (please forgive us if we misspelled that!) Fun Fact: in ancient times, before be-heading someone, they offered them a drink of chocolatal to help them relax. ¬†So considerate of them, right?

Anyways, after the little history of chocolate was over, plenty of chocolate making/eating ensued, and of course we got to bring quite a large stash home with us!

Best. Party. Ever.

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So now that we’ve got you thinking about chocolate, you’re going to go and make this delicious, chocolate (and pumpkin) filled bread, right?

Right ūüėČ

Chocolate Pumpkin Bread

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Prep Time: 15 min
Bake Time: 45 min
Serves: 12

Ingredients:

1 c. whole wheat flour
1/2 c. all purpose flour
1/4 c. cocoa powder
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
2 tsp coffee granules (optional- intensifies the chocolate flavour)
1 tsp cinnamon
1 c. pure pumpkin puree (not pie filling)
1/4 c. coconut oil, softened
1/4 c. date paste
1/4 c. maple syrup
1/3 c. milk
2 eggs, beaten
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 c. chocolate chips

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 350F.  Spray a loaf pan with non-stick cooking spray.

In a large bowl, combine the first 7 ingredients (all the dry ingredients). ¬†In a separate bowl, beat the eggs. ¬†Add the pumpkin, coconut oil, date paste and maple syrup and stir until smooth. ¬†(There may be a few lumps from the coconut oil- that’s ok). ¬†Add the milk and vanilla and stir again until the mixture is smooth. ¬†Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and stir just until everything is combined. ¬†Add the chocolate chips and give it another quick stir, until the chips are evenly distributed and there are no dry spots in the batter.

Pour the Batter into the prepared pan and bake on the centre wrack for 45-50 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the centre comes out clean.

~twosaucysisters

Have you ever been to a chocolate-making party? ¬†What is the coolest party you’ve ever been to?