Pumpkin Bread to Warm the Soul

How was everyone’s weekend? Mine was pretty darn nice and I have to admit, I didn’t take too many photos. Here’ the weekend recap!

Saturday

Dana, Moose, and I hit up the neighborhood for a 3 mile run. The temperature was low to mid 50’s so I dressed in capris and a long sleeve wicking top. It was a bit cool run at first, but I warmed up quickly and it eventually felt perfect. The run felt great too and I can confidently say I can comfortably run 3 miles again. Now, it’s time to progress on the mileage!

After our run we made our way to the local farmer’s market to pick up some veggies I needed for an appetizer I was making for a get-together that evening.

I made a white bean dip served with crudités (fancy word for an appetizer with veggie sticks right?). I cannot believe I did not take one photo of this dish, but at the same time I’m not surprised since I was kind of running around like a crazy person trying to get ready.

To make the bean dip I added all ingredients into the food processor (unsure of exact amounts):

  • 1 minced shallot and 1 minced garlic clove sautéed in 1-2 tablespoons of olive oil
  • 2 1/2 cups white beans (I used northern)
  • lemon juice from half a lemon
  • Olive oil
  • 1/4 cup cilantro
  • salt and pepper
  • garlic and onion powder

I whirled this up and it turned out to be a nummy and creamy white bean dip. I served it with a tray of veggie sticks: carrots, zucchini, celery, and red bell peppers.

Here is a small plate of it:

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The big dish of it was WAY prettier.

We met up with three of my college friends (one being my bridesmaid Haley), their husbands and two babies. We had a blast hanging out, eating amazing food, playing with the babes, going nuts with Catch Phrase, and seeing Grace’s beautiful home.

I loved every second of it. She lives about an hour and a half from us so we called it a night at around 8:30 so we could make it home in good time. You all know I need my sleep, plus the pup still needed to eat dinner.

Sunday

We ran our standard Sunday morning errands after eating breakfast, reading the paper, and drinking our coffees.

I was thrilled to have had very few plans for Sunday. I need these days to just “be.” I’m struggling with this whole relaxation business however. I find that when I do have time to just relax that I can’t because I feel too guilty about relaxing. It’s a vicious cycle.

I feel like I should be folding the laundry or doing food prep or cleaning or running errands. I am working on getting this idea out of my head because relaxation and doing nothing is important for all of us.

You know what I like to do to relax? Bake.

I actually made this loaf up on Friday when I had about an hour time frame to bake the bread, shower and get ready to go meet up with my mom so that experience wasn’t as much for relaxation as it was I felt I needed to make the bread RIGHT THEN AND THERE! I get so stubborn sometimes. Where are your time management skills, Melanie?! But really, I do enjoy baking.

Either way, I whirled up a batch of grain-free SCD-friendly pumpkin bread. It turned out magnificent if I do say so myself. Once again I forgot to snap a photo of the entire loaf, but here is a shot of about half the loaf. I’ve been eating it for breakfast everyday. I told you I love this stuff….

**Recipe at bottom of post and is now in a printable version!**

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Slather the bread with apple butter, nut butter, honey, a light coat of butter, or eat plain. Any way you have it you’re sure to enjoy! Remember that most SCD breads do not rise well due to some limiting factors in ingredients, so you usually render a more flat, dense loaf. Yes you can be on the SCD and still eat bread! Wooo!

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Let’s see, the rest of the day was spent with some odds and ends around the house and then a bomb dinner. I won’t be sharing it with you until tomorrow but let me tell you it is one you won’t want to miss. My hint is that it involves acorn squash.

Also, I forgot to mention that one of my wonderful readers commented on my post about the cinnamon apple sauce I made the other day and said that she makes apple butter in the crock pot! I just had to try this so on Friday afternoon I started up a batch in the crockpot.

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Come this afternoon, it should be done! I’ll let you know how it turns out. Thank you, Amanda! I even bought the cans to store the apple butter and everything!

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I am off to get a workout in, and then I’ll be out on the prowl in search of a dress for that wedding I mentioned. Thank you for your comments about that orange dress I found but unfortunately they don’t have the dress in my size which of course means I won’t be ordering it. It wasn’t meant to be apparently. Cross your fingers for me that I find one today. I absolutely despise trying clothes on in the fitting rooms. I get so hot and worked up.

One more thing…I bought this amazing coffee yesterday at my favorite store in the whole world, Target.

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I make it last a long time but only adding in one scoop of it to regular coffee. It is so smooth and buttery and I LOVE it. It was a good buy.

Again, this post became rather tangenty. I apologize for that and for the lack of photos. I promise there will be more tomorrow. Have a magical Monday. Catch up with you soon.

Pumpkin Bread to Warm the Soul
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Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
(Grain-free, Gluten-free, SCD-friendly) Makes 2 loaves
Ingredients
  • 3 c. almond flour
  • 1½ Tbsp. cinnamon
  • 1 tsp. nutmeg
  • ½ tsp. all spice
  • 2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 2 c. pumpkin puree
  • 1 ripe banana
  • 3 eggs
  • ⅓ c. egg white (or 2-3 large egg whites)
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • ⅓ c. honey
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350°. Lightly grease 2 standard size bread loaf pans; set aside.
  2. In medium bowl combine dry ingredients; set aside.
  3. In large mixing bowl blend together wet ingredients.
  4. Slowly add dry ingredients to wet. Mix until just combined.
  5. Pour batter into loaf pans.
  6. Bake for 60 minutes or until toothpick inserted into center of loaf comes out clean.

Game Day Recipe Recap

Morning!

MMMm breakfast was a bowl of greek yogurt with honey, banana, and Peanut Butter Multigrain Cheerios. It has to be a good day because I had a good breakfast right? One can only hope!

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Quick recap from yesterday. Later in the afternoon after going through some bins in the basement, we turned on the puppy bowl for Moose. His kind of Super bowl.  He was really into it, see him watching the “game”?! Love this photo so much.

I spent a whole lot of time in the kitchen yesterday whipping up our Super Bowl snacks and Dana did an awesome job keeping up with the mega dishes!

At game time I plated up some goodies for myself: chicken bites, bean dip, guacamole (recipes below), sugar snap peas, Blue Corn with flaxseed tortilla chips, and home-made zucchini and potato chips. I went back for seconds of some more chips and guac.

I didn’t really tune in to the game until the half time show (way to go Madonna!) but then watched most of the last half.

Anyway, here are my Super Bowl recipes. I tried keeping everything healthy. Enjoy!

Baked Chicken Poppers

Baked Chicken Poppers

Ingredients

  • 1 boneless skinless chicken breast, cut into bite sized pieces
  • 3/4 cup Fiber One Original
  • dash of onion powder
  • 1/3 cup egg white
  • salt and pepper to taste

Directions

1. Preheat oven to 400°F; coat baking sheet with cooking spray (I laid aluminum foil down first, then sprayed it for less clean up)

2. Break down Fiber One in food processor until ground; pour cereal onto plate; add a dash of onion powder

3. Pour egg whites into small bowl and line up assembly line (L to R): chicken, egg white, cereal, pan

4. Drop chicken one at a time into egg mixture, then coat in cereal, and place on baking sheet. Repeat until all pieces are coated.

5. Spray chicken with cooking spray; sprinkle with salt and pepper.

6. Bake for 20 minutes.

Serve with warm with honey  mustard, ketchup, barbecue sauce, light ranch, or your favorite dipping sauce. These were really good–I wasn’t sure how they would turn out but they were winners!

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Green Chili Bean Dip

Green Chili Bean Dip

Ingredients

  • 1/2 small white onion, diced
  • 4 oz can diced green chilies
  • 16 oz can reduced sodium pinto beans; rinsed, drained
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 1/4 cup salsa
  • salt and pepper to taste

Directions

1. Saute onion until translucent

2. Add chilies, beans, garlic powder, and cumin; mix to combine

3. Remove from heat; place in food processor

4. Process until smooth; adding salt and pepper to taste

5. Pour into bowl; stir in 1/4 cup salsa

Serve hot or cold with tortilla chips, sugar snap peas, or your favorite veggies

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Guacamole Salsa (with peas)

Guacamole Salsa (with peas)

Ingredients

  • 1 cup peas, food processed to smooth
  • 1 ripe avocado, diced
  • 1 cup corn
  • 1 lime, juiced
  • 1 Roma tomato, diced
  • 1/4 cup red onion, finely chopped
  • 1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
  • 1 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/4 tsp cumin
  • 1/4 tsp onion powder
  • salt and pepper to taste

Directions

Mix ingredients until combined. Chill before serving. Serve with tortilla chips. SO GOOD!

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I did baked up some home-made potato chips and zucchini chips for the game as well. We used the mandolin to cut thin slices then baked at 425° for I don’t know how long. We actually had to keep adjusting the temperature of the oven because we couldn’t get the chips to cook evenly. They tasted awesome but because of the experimenting with the temperature and not knowing exactly how long they baked, I won’t be able to give you an exact recipe. Sorry bout that! I’ll get ya next time.

In the midst of all of the super bowl snack prep, I also whipped up a batch of tomato soup for a weeknight dinner this week, as well as some energy balls, and pulled chicken for Dana’s lunches this week (and probably my lunches too). I told you I was a busy lady in the kitchen today!

I will share those recipes later this week. I didn’t want to bombard you with 5,000 recipes right off the bat Monday morning. 🙂

What a wonderful weekend. I am so happy I got to spend so much time with my honey. I felt like we had a very productive weekend. I’ll check in with you all later! Happy Monday.