2011 and Chai Tea Latte’s

Happy New Year Everyone!!

I sincerely hope everyone had a wonderful holiday season. One of these days I’ll get pictures up of my Christmas festivities. I really can’t believe it’s already 2011.  Crazy, huh? A few changes I will be working on this year that could potentially affect the blog:

  • I will be posting more regularly ( probably 3-4 times a week)
  • Every weekend (or at least the weekends I have time) I am going to make something homemade that I might normally purchase. Bread, crackers, pasta, and beef jerky are on the top of my list
  • I plan to further limit my dairy consumption
  • There are other things too, but I”ll inform you of those as they come along

Moving on. For Christmas, a very kind friend gave me a little teapot that you put loose tea grounds in. She also gave me a bag of chai tea grounds.

 Both of which I have been enjoying very much! One of the grocery stores I went to in Colorado gave free Starbucks if you spent over $50. I rarely go to Starbucks, but it was free so I couldn’t resist! I ordered up a chai tea latte. It was  enjoyable, although a tad too sweet. Today I decided to recreate this beverage!

I begin by heating a mug of almond milk in the microwave until it was nice and hot.

While it was heating, I put a spoonful of tea grounds into my teapot

I poured the hot almond milk in and let it steep for a couple of minutes

I then poured it back into my mug and added 2 packets of stevia before enjoying my delicious beverage.

Delicious. Dairy free, sugar-free, and quite inexpensive. Take that Starbucks!

Of course, if you don’t have a cute little teapot, you could easily do the same thing with a bag of chai tea.

Are you a fan of Starbucks? What about chai tea?

 

Food for Warmth

Hello There!

First off, I want to thank you all for your super sweet comments on my last post. I love hearing your thoughts about why you eat healthy. Not a single one if you liked the idea of eating nothing but Twinkies (Suprise, suprise).

Any who, today I have been cold, cold, cold all day. No idea why as it’s not particularly cold outside. But, for some reason I’ve been very cold. And we all know that when cold, there is nothing better than warm food. This afternoon I enjoyed a nice mug of hot chocolate while doing some reading for school.

I make hot chocolate by mixing 1 part chocolate Silk almond milk with 1 part unsweetened vanilla Almond Breeze (the chocolate silk is good on its own but way too strong and sweet for me).

A short while later I was craving some warm food. A creamy chowder sounded delightful. Of course, a trip to the grocery store was not in order, so I decided to go with what I had on hand. There was a large ham in my fridge and about 8 cans of corn in my pantry, both ingredients that I thought I could work with. And so I began….

First I sautéed some onions in olive oil and then added some  whole-wheat flour and almond milk to make a roux. Shortly later ham cubes, corn, some seasonings and more almond milk was added.

I then discovered some broccoli in my freezer so naturally that made an appearance in my soup.

A bit more simmering and it was time for dinner.

Creamless Creamy Corn Chowder

1/2 T olive oil

1/4 of an onion chopped

1 large clove garlic chopped

3 T whole wheat flour

1 3/4 cup unsweetened almond milk

1 can yellow corn

1/2 cup cubed ham

1/2-1 cup Brocoli*

1 t Herbes De Province

Chipotle Tabasco ( I used about 1/2 teaspoon)

Salt and Pepper to taste

*If broccoli is frozen, place in a microwave safe bowl, cover with plastic wrap and cook in microwave for one minute before adding to soup.

Saute onion and garlic in olive oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat. When onion is softened add flour and drizzle in 3/4 cups almond milk. Let simmer 30 seconds. Add remaining ingredients. Reduce heat to medium-low and let simmer for 10-15 minutes. Serve and enjoy! Yield: serves 2-3

And a note to all your vegans, the ham really isn’t necessary. I would have been perfectly happy with just the corn and brocoli.

Served via a large coffee mug, because I”m convinced food taste better when eaten out of a mug.

 

I love cooking like this: I decide I want to make something and just do it. No planning, no recipes, no trip to the grocery store.

What is your favorite cold weather food?

Have a wonderful week!

-Ann Claire