Frozen Yogurt: Where Have You Been All My Life?

Okay, I’m not talking about frozen yogurt from a frozen yogurt store.  I’m talking about actual Greek Yogurt that I put into the freezer with delicious stuff mixed in/on top.  And it’s good.  Roomie said it’s better than ice cream.  I’m not willing to go quite that far, but I do like it as a legit dessert.  And it’s healthy.

My favorite thing is when I can eat healthy food that tastes completely satisfying.  This is one of those times.

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The original recipe can be found here: Strawberry and Pistachio Frozen Yogurt from The Kitchn.

My recipe is a little bit easier, because I cheated.  So if you want one less thing to measure, you can do it this way:

Frozen Yogurt with Fruit ‘n Nuts

Ingredients

  • 2 cups honey Greek yogurt (or one large container)
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup diced strawberries
  • 1/2 cup pistachios

How To

Combine the yogurt, vanilla and salt in a bowl.  Spread the yogurt mixture into your freezing container of choice.  I went with a 9×13 glass baking dish, because it’s what I had.  Roomie tried it with a muffin tin, and it worked beautifully, too.  I might go that route next time.  It would be easier to portion out.

After your mixture is in its freezing dish, add strawberries and pistachios on top.  Put it in the freezer for 4 hours (uncovered).  Then you can break/cut/take out of muffin tin and store it frozen in a sealable plastic bag.  I will say it was hard to cut in the glass dish.  So cut it when you’re hungry and desperately want a snack.  It’ll give you Hulk power.  Worked for me, anyway.

This stuff is tasty.  I think we’ll be enjoying it lots of times this summer, and probably with a wide variety of fruits and nuts on top.

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P.S.  I made this while I was prepping for a big art sale last weekend.  Only put your snack near your watercolor art if your art is covered in plastic wrappers and your snack is very firmly on the plate.  I had a few close calls with yogurt on paper.  Whew.  All for the sake of a good picture.  Next time, I’m eating my snack straight out of the freezer like a normal person.

 

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Warm, Fall Inspiration

Fall is my favorite season.  It has so much going for it–between the crisp weather and the ability to wear comfy sweaters and boots to work, it’s hard to go wrong.  It’s like an invitation to wrap yourself in a warm blanket and just enjoy life for a few months.

But for the past few days, the allergy side of the season has been hitting me and turning me into a tired, groggy mess.  Sometimes life calls for a warm cup of tea and some quiet rejoicing over the season.  Thankfully, I have a husband who encourages me to sit on the porch with a cup of tea.  He’s cool like that.

And there’s a cup of tea for the creative side of things, too:

watercolor from leschosettes.canalblog.com

watercolor from leschosettes.canalblog.com

Happy Otterday!

While we were on vacation, I sold a set of my favorite otter notecards.  It’s the teeny tiny victories that count when you aren’t devoting much time to your artistic craft.

il_570xN.395734437_dvntI mailed them off yesterday and realized that I only have two sets of otter cards left.  Good thing I get to keep the original!

When My Blog Grows Up

I was looking for recipe inspiration today (grocery store day got delayed to Tuesday, so the recipe hunt is on), when I ran into this little gem:

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photo from The Forest Feast (you can get there by clicking on the picture)

Sure, it might just look like a cookbook, but it’s also a beautiful blog.  I love it!  I might not have tested a single recipe, but the photography/watercolor combination is enough to get my vote.  Add trees and food to the mix, and I’m a total goner.  I’ll try a recipe soon.  But today, I just want to say that when my blog grows up, I want it to look like this blog.  Okay, like this blog plus a few pictures of our dog taking naps. 

After I had that thought (about the blog, not the dog), I considered how much time it would take for me to create a watercolor heading for each recipe I post.  Right, that’s why I don’t paint watercolor headings and recipes and such.  You would get a weekly recipe at best, maybe a monthly recipe.  For now, we’ll stick to the marginally attractive options that get food to the people.  Personally, I vote food over perfection. 

It’s nice to see perfection out there in the world though.  [I would like to note that as I typed that last sentence, I dumped my cold leftovers out of their Tupperware, into my lap.  I won’t ever reach perfection.  I might, however, achieve watercolor headings and better photography.  The end.]

We’re also trying a recipe this week from this food blog: The Smitten Kitchen.  Mmm.  Fancy.

Non-traditional Holiday Prep

Of course, since we’re hosting Thanksgiving this year, there were oodles and oodles of recipes to pick and groceries to buy. And of course, I went grocery shopping after work on the one night that involved 37 degree weather mixed with decently heavy rain and large rivers through the parking lot. On top of that, I wore my boots that have a giant hole in the bottom on that day.  Not my smartest set of decisions ever.

But that’s what warm sweatpants are for when you get home.

That covers the traditional preparations.  There were also some non-food creative ventures that happened recently.  A few commissioned paintings allowed me to dust off my watercolor paint brushes.  That was a somewhat scary experience, since the subject matter for one was a bit outside of my normal trees and such.  I like how it turned out though:

photo(1)It’s an antique dive helmet, in case that isn’t obvious.  It’s also slightly brighter in real life.

After the watercolor adventures, there was a furniture painting adventure.  We’ve had this outdoor table and chairs since some good friends moved away several years ago.  I love inheriting furniture from friends, because it reminds me of people I really really like.  I also like that it’s free.

The table and chairs were cute when we got them–orange plastic with red metal legs on the table and chairs.  Unfortunately, sun and rain and potted plants on the table do eventually leave furniture in need of some TLC.  A few years ago, I painted the plastic portion a darker red to match the legs and bring the set back to its former glory.

Fast forward two years, and things were starting to look shabby again.  Now, thanks to two cans of spray paint that I bought years ago, they’ve been transformed into two shades of green that are really quite nice in our living areas inside and out.  Yay!  Furniture that looks brand new!!!

photoNow the munchkin table is fresh and Thanksgiving-worthy.  Thanks for the table, friends.  It is being well loved.

Merry Mid-January

We’re very nearly into the double digits in January, and I’m working my way into the month with our Christmas tree proudly standing in the front window. I kind of like it. It is the prettiest Christmas tree of my adult life, and it’s definitely cheery. Why not leave it up for cool winter nights?

Peanut is hoping the tree will fall soon so that he can see out the window again, but I’m happy with things for now. I’ve got other things to do.

Before mid-January arrived, Scott, Peanut and I got to take quick trips to Blacksburg and North Carolina. This was our greeting at the family farm:

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When we got home, I needed to apply for a new passport ASAP (more on that fun reason soon). I was afraid that when I submitted my old passport for renewal, they might just keep it a la the DMV and old licenses. Fortunately, that’s not how it works. I took a few pictures of my old passport before dropping it off, just in case. I really really didn’t want to lose those stamps.

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While I ran back and forth between the post office and home to get paperwork sorted out, I got a few packs of seeds for our winter vegetable garden. As I was paying for the seeds, the store owner put them into a small paper bag that was decorated with a marker-drawn flower. I loved it right away, and I loved it even more when he shrugged and said, “My granddaughter was here earlier.” A granddaughter-decorated paper bag is the perfect way to start a winter garden, in my opinion.

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What else am I doing? I’m editing things, painting things, and painting other types of things (the first being watercolors, the second being doors and trim and such around the house).
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I’m hoping that my paintings become more than rough drafts of ideas soon. I feel good about that.