Thursday, June 28, 2012


  Who doesn't love a good snack? The afternoon pick-me-up is often the difference between responsibly eating a well-balanced dinner, and shoveling anything you can find in your mouth while you wait for dinner to be done. I'm often the latter and not the former as often as I would like to be, but one way to combat the type of hunger that only an immediate response can provide is to have plenty of great snacks on hand.

  Fresh fruit makes a great snack.  It's really fast and easy, and you get some sugar in a healthy way.
  Aren't these fresh Bing cherries beautiful?
 Another sweet treat I love is one you might not have eaten since you were a kid.  Yes, I'm talking about Ants on a Log.  My version gets a bit of an adult upgrade with almond butter and golden raisins (which I ALWAYS use in place of regular raisins because I think they taste better.)
  My new favorite salty snack is roasted edamame!  My first batch was plain, but I think they would taste great with dried fruit like cranberries or cherries.  Preheat oven to 425 degrees, drizzle one cup of thawed, shelled edamame with about 1 Tablespoon of oil (I used sesame), sprinkle with salt and roast!  Keep an eye on them, and stir them around every so often.  Your edamame should be roasted to perfection after about 20-22 minutes.
  Now for dessert!  Or a little sweet snack.  Another favorite is chocolate peanut butter pudding made with a 'secret' ingredient.  I wrote about it in this previous blog post.  I call these Hillbilly Parfaits, and it's based on a Weight Watchers recipe I found.  Fresh strawberries and tapioca pudding are layered in dessert cups for something that looks a lot fancier than it is, but still tastes great!
  What you need:
  • 2 cups of fresh, hulled strawberries
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 1 large container tapioca pudding
  Take 1 cup of the strawberries and place in a blender with the sugar.  Blend until smooth.  Combine strawberry mixture with remaining cup of strawberries.  Take 4 dessert cups and start with strawberry mixture, then add some tapioca, then more strawberry mixture.  Repeat until all four cups are filled evenly.  Refrigerate.

  The Waldo Canyon Fire has devastated our Colorado Springs community.  We are waiting for the fire to be contained further, and then the rebuilding process can begin.  Wildfires are not something that, in the humid-rich Midwest, were given much of a thought but the reality and danger have truly sunken in.
  Though we have not had to evacuate our home, the threat of possible evacuation does put things into perspective.  What do you take?  What do you leave?  As I ponder those questions, looking around the house, my heart catches at the sight of familiar and precious objects.  Yet I immediately realize that the safety and well-being of the ones I love is truly the most precious possession I have.  Funny, how the threat of having nothing can make you realize you already have everything you need.  Sending warm thoughts to you and yours.  Be safe and love each other.
 Currently reading: Un Lun Dun by China Mieville
                             On Mexican Time: A New Life in San Miguel by Tony Cohan

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