apple butter

We had a bunch of apples and they were coming to that point where something had to be done with them. I knew they weren’t going to be eaten on their own as I really only like the tart green apples. As much as I enjoy apple pie, I just wasn’t in the mood to make one. It had to be something new. So despite the fact that it’s not really the season for apple dishes, I thought it was finally time to try my hand at apple butter.

I blended the apples into a sauce, and simply cooked it down with a bit of sugar and some spices in my slow cooker. 24 hours later I had creamy, delicately sweet apple butter. I didn’t get all fancy and preserve the jar, I just popped it in the fridge as there’s only enough to last about a week (less at this rate).

As a complement, I made some simple English muffins so I wasn’t just eating the butter out of the jar. I love the combination of the savory muffin and earth balance with the apple butter. I think it would also be great stirred into some oatmeal or in the middle of a layer cake. Yes please.

With summer fruits around the corner, maybe I’ll get daring and try my hand at some jellies and jams.

Austin food and drink

With a schedule full of film watching in Austin, I didn’t expect to do a ton of restaurant sampling. Shawn, on the other hand, plotted out the best places to go based on everyone’s recommendations. Thank goodness for a husband that balances out my movie madness, since some of the meals were not to be missed.

Possibly my favorite of the restaurants was Bouldin Creek where I had two of the most delicious breakfasts. The first, a vegan benedict, was so good I insisted we go back another day. I’m not sure exactly how they prepare their tofu, but it is amazing: seasoned and lightly coated in nutritional yeast. Their potato cakes are also worth a mention as they’re far beyond any hash brown I’ve ever had.



I was also a big fan of Veggie Heaven. In particular the tangerine mushrooms were the kind of thing I crave often. It is the sort of dish I see on a menu in many places but never lives up to what I’m imagining in my head. Yet, these saucy & perfectly breaded mushrooms were everything I hoped they would be. The steamed buns were also very good. Let’s not forget the bubble tea, it was the best.

We also happened upon this adorable place that had just opened called Hillside Farmacy. There were only a couple of vegan options on the menu, like the soup of the day, which happened to be carrot cardamom, but the interior is lovely and they have Stumptown coffee and a bar. It’s definitely worth a visit just to check out the beautiful renovation they’ve done of the space, and of course, have some coffee. I wanted to live inside this shop.

Not only does Austin have some lovely vegan friendly restaurants, there are also some very nice bars with mixed drinks I love. The drink menu and atmosphere at the East Side Show Room was by far my favorite. And of course, as I mentioned before, Austin will now be known to me as the first place I ever tried boba and subsequently fell in love with it.

Even though we’d visited Austin before, it was great to go to a completely new set of restaurants and food trucks. Can’t wait to go back and try some more.

airstream living


When we visited Austin for SXSW we decided to do something a little different in terms of lodging. By the time we looked for a place to stay, all the hotels were booked and we had to search for other options. I started perusing Airbnb, looking for anything in town, when I came across this airstream. Just looking at the photos, I was sold.

It was remodeled on the inside in a modest modern style. There was a small kitchen and a desk in the front, while the bed was tucked away cozily in the back. It was a really nice place to spend the rainy mornings of our trip.

While it isn’t someplace I’d want to live, it inspired both Shawn and I for a potential office space, or maybe a guest room. We absolutely spent a few hours researching vintage airstreams to put in the backyard of our future fantasy home.


Would you ever put an airstream in your driveway or backyard even?

mad men party



Well, the Mad Men premiere party was a success. I managed to make all the dishes on the menu we planned (despite my kitchen sink breaking the day before, sad times). On top of that, Shawn set up a photo booth and made some awesome Mad Men masks.

I loved the episode and it was nice to have all the characters back. More so, it was fun to watch with friends and I was super happy that everyone dressed up. I see more tv theme parties in our future. A Twin Peaks marathon has already been discussed.

asparagus & broccoli risotto

This week, after seeing two recipes for risotto show up in my blog reader I thought to myself, maybe it’s time I try to make some myself. Despite needing a bit of attention on the stove, it was very simple to make and so rewarding to eat. One of my favorite meals is rice & broccoli, and this risotto is basically just the fancy version of that. This dish will easily impress any dinner guest.

I followed this recipe and just subbed out the zucchini for broccoli and asparagus (and of course, left out the pesto). It was creamy and so full of flavor, I just couldn’t get enough. I might have to make risotto all the time now. I’m ok with that too.