Thursday, July 31, 2014

August Desktop Calendar

I am super in love with August's desktop calendar. It's pretty and happy and sunshiny and BROWNIES.

Frosted Coconut Milk Brownies, to be exact. They are absolutely as tasty as they sound.

The only problem is the intense chocolate craving I get when I look at it. Which is every time I open my laptop. Which is a lot, since I'm blogging and other such activities (ahem, having fun in Cape Town) full time.

To set this photo as your desktop calendar, click the photo for your desktop size to open it in a new tab, then right click the photo and save it to your computer. You can then set it as your desktop! The one above is for a 1280x800 desktop (a 13 inch Macbook). Here are some more desktop sizes.




iPhone 5:

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Peanut Butter S'mores Popcorn

I haven't written much about it because I don't usually have an excuse to, but I really, really love popcorn. Like a lot. Like I probably eat it four nights a week a lot. It's a problem.

Air-popped popcorn is my favorite thing in the world and I can talk myself into believing it's healthy that way, but here in Cape Town I've had to stick to microwave, since we didn't want to buy an air-popper we'd have to throw away in a year. I knew I'd have to make some sacrifices when we moved here, but that's a pretty big ask...

Oh wait, I'm getting gorgeous beaches and views of Table Mountain when I step out my front door in exchange. I guess it'll be okay.

This decadent creation came about because I had leftover marshmallows after making rice crispy treats for our belated Fourth of July celebration/anniversary dinner (more to come on that later) and needed an excuse to use them. I saw s'mores on Pinterest and started craving them, and somehow this idea struck.

And peanut butter needed to be included. Because peanut butter and chocolate are best pals. And because peanut butter.

This is super easy- it comes together in about ten minutes- and fun and different from usual buttery popcorn for movie night. You may need a few extra napkins, though!

Peanut Butter S'mores Popcorn

Serves 3-4

1 bag microwave popcorn or 5 cups air-popped popcorn
2 cups marshmallows
1/4 cup chocolate chips
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 cup peanut butter

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (180 degrees C). Grease a large baking sheet.
2. Cook popcorn according to package directions. Toss popcorn with marshmallows and chocolate chips. Spread out on the baking sheet and evenly sprinkle with salt. Make in preheated oven for 7-10 minutes or until marshmallows and chocolate are soft.
3. While the popcorn is baking, add the peanut butter to a microwave safe bowl. Microwave on high for 1:30-2 minutes, stirring every 30 seconds, until the peanut butter is thin enough to pour.
4. Remove the popcorn from the oven and pour peanut butter over it, distributing evenly.

Sunday, July 27, 2014

SA Sunday: Wine Tasting in Stellenbosch

South Africa produces some amazing wine. Like, really, really good. So good, in fact, that it's turned two staunch beer lovers into wine enthusiasts. We drank wine occasionally before moving here, but now it's our drink of choice.

Hey, hey. I'm not saying we prefer it to beer. We love them both equally. Beer, it's not your fault. Wine is just really affordable here (I'm talking $5 for a totally solid bottle) and we never knew just how good it could be. Pinotage has changed my adult beverage world. But the craft beer market in South Africa is coming along and we still love a good pint.

Friday, July 25, 2014

Chicken Tikka Masala

Pizza has got some serious competition for warm comfort food that I over eat, now that I've discovered the beauty of Indian food. Not that I hadn't eaten it before, but I'd never cooked it myself before we came to South Africa.

Malaysian and Indian style cuisine is very popular here, including a creation straight out of Durban, South Africa called "bunny chow", which is unbelievably tasty. And has nothing to do with rabbits. It's a hollowed out loaf of bread or roll filled with curry. And I will be attempting it myself here, soon.

This recipe came about because I was making lots of curries, and Fiance kept asking why they weren't orange like the tikka masala he'd get from Gandhi's in Portland. So I took a crack at whipping up my own tikka masala.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Easy Lemon Chicken & Veggie Bake

This chicken is stupid easy. Like, really, really easy. I'm just considering it a part of the "back to basics" theme I've been running (see: Easy Crusty Bread and Simple Breakfast Hash). That'll be changing soon: I've got some seriously tasty Indian and Ethiopian recipes up my sleeve.

This dish is great for a weeknight meal: you can prep the whole thing the night before or that morning and then throw it in the oven when you get home. It also makes a great meal for friends who are moving/having a baby/just had surgery/don't want to cook/etc. because it reheats so well.

Sunday, July 20, 2014

SA Sunday: South African Safari!

WARNING: This is a long blog post. I wrote way too much. But there are tons of pretty pictures of super neat African animals to make up for it.

I never thought I'd get to say this.

Fiance and I went. On. An. African. Safari.

Just another incredible reminder of how cool our lives are right now and how fortunate we are to be having this experience in South Africa.

We got to host two of our good friends from the US for a couple of weeks and play at being tour guides, so we thought it would be really fun to do our first safari with them. We unfortunately didn't have the time or the cash to go all the way out to Kruger, the big National Park in South Africa that's home to most of the country's safari animals, so I started researching our options in the Western Cape (where Cape Town is located).

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Scones

I've developed a nighttime snack habit that is not good for the pre-wedding diet. Peanut butter chocolate chip oatmeal cookies will be my downfall. I probably make a small once a week for a late night treat, and enjoy the few leftovers with my coffee the next morning. Tasty, but dangerous. I love the good ol' peanut butter and chocolate combo more than ever.

The Cinnamon Apple Scones I made a few weeks ago have made me fall in love with the bready morning treats, and I decided to make some peanut butter chocolate chip scones because that sounded like a more justifiable way to get my sweet tooth fix and still call it breakfast.