Everything in balance 

We’re heading into a Minnesota winter, which always makes me want to hunker down…and eat. Combined with the tendency to overindulge at the holidays, and exercise less (no outdoor pool 😔), it’s easy to put on a few pounds.

Instead of trying to “will” my way through it, I’m resolving to take a new approach to embracing and accepting winter. When it comes to health habits, I am working “adventures” into our lives—trying new foods and restaurants, varying my exercises (I did starfishes this week at the gym!). Gotta do something to keep it interesting!

So 2 cool food discoveries this week:

  • Bulletproof coffee. Read more about this fad, which celebs like Jimmy Fallon and Gwenyth Paltrow swear by. It’s creamy, rich and nutty—with grassfed butter and coconut oil blended into it. I was flying high afterwards and see why people use it for a meal replacement (at 250 calories per serving it’s definitely an indulgence). The healthy fats are good for your brain and I definitely felt full afterwards. (FYI, Here in MN the restaurant Agra Culture sells it if you don’t want to track down the somewhat unusual ingredients).
  • Pomegranates. I have bought just the juice previously, had pom-flavored chocolate, cranberries etc, but I had never bought a fresh one until Fresh Thyme opened up near us this week and I was curious. Cutting it open, I quickly became fascinated with these little jewels and felt like a little monkey digging them out. It was truly fun. Tossed them on salads for some beauty and crunch. The boys were glad this superfood didn’t involve kale.

A reminder that food is fun, especially when you slow down to really experience its sensory aspects and keep an open mind. That, and Everything in balance. I’m justifying the coffee with pomegranates and starfishes. 🌟 

Food Travelogue: Seattle/Tacoma

Pike’s Place Market

Alec and I recently visited Seattle and Tacoma for a tour of a few colleges. I have always loved the area, in fact it’s where Matt & I honeymooned. The culture and people feel a lot like Minnesota–friendly, outdoorsy and full of an appreciation for art and sense of place.

We had less than 48 hours so we didn’t do much other than visiting the campuses in Tacoma and downtown Seattle. I was quite surprised by how different the two cities are–again, it felt like Minneapolis vs St. Paul. Tacoma is definitely a “big” town that feels small. Lots of local stores, independently owned, beautiful art throughout the city (a glass museum that I wished we’d had time to visit). Of course, gorgeous views of Mt. Rainier and Puget Sound. Alec was annoyed by the number of times I said “Look another rainbow!” It does rain A LOT, but at least it’s not snow 😉

The area is known for its coffee and beer, and actually a growing winemaking and craft distilling (whiskey primarily) community. I hope I get to go back soon for more grownup sampling. We stuck to coffee and what goes great with coffee? Breakfast foods! Some food highlights:

  • Breakfast biscuits with spicy remoulade at Biscuit Bitch (who could resist a name like that!)
  • Chocolate sandcastle donut, a chocolate cinnamon sugar combo. I’d go back to try salted caramel.
  • Bacon cheddar waffle at Red Elm Cafe in Tacoma. The 2 sisters who recently opened this charming spot were so friendly I wanted to hang out all day.

I’m very grateful Alec gives me excuses to travel and eat! 😊

Sparkling mint coldpress coffee

Summer Sunday mornings are one of life’s luxuries. We’re all together and while the boys sleep a little later, I get breakfast ready. We have a lovely little bakery down the street and so today I picked up some treats. 

My treat is caffeine 😉

I have been spending a ridiculous amount of money on coldpress coffee lately. It’s far less bitter and acidic since it never touches heat, which means a lot of noncoffee drinkers even enjoy it. 

If you’re not familiar with coffee, just know that “cold press” or “cold brew” uses a steeping technique vs “iced coffee”, which is typically brewed normally (hot) and then poured over ice. In both cases, the strength of the coffee is usually doubled as it gets water and ice added after it cools.

I’ve been playing around with the ratio and this morning tried a couple tweaks based on reading about coffee trends.  The nice part is that if it’s too strong for one drinker, you can simply add more water. 

These flavors are a riff on mint juleps. I normally drink black coffee, but found this really was better with the muddled sugar/mint. Feel free to sneak in some bourbon 🙂

Sparkling mint coldpress coffee

  • 8tbsp ground coffee
  • 3c still water
  • Sparkling water
  • Handful mint sprigs
  • Sugar
  • Milk, cream (as you enjoy)

Pour water over coffee grinds in french press. Steep for 12 hours in fridge. Press coffee. Muddle 2-3 mint sprigs with 1tsp sugar. Pour 4 oz of coffee over and stir to combine. Top with sparkling (2oz if you prefer strong coffee). Top with ice and milk, cream as desired. This is roughly 8 cups of coffee total.