Oh Chocolate, My Chocolate: Energy Bites

I love chocolate! Today, rather than invading the left over holiday candy, I thought I should locate my energy bite recipe, to fill my need for sweet! I knew it was one of my first blog posts, so it was easy to locate. If you missed it the first time around, here is your second chance! YUM!!

Love Yourself…Embrace Yourself…Just Be You…

♥Roda

Growing Self

When I contemplate my top 10 favorite things in life, chocolate would probably fall in the top five. That rich, melty goodness that floods my body with warmth and happiness…Awwww, perfection! Chocolate and I have been friends for as long as I can remember…

In elementary school, her name was “Hershey Kiss”. We would always have lunch together, for Mrs. Case, my fourth and fifth grade teacher loved chocolate as much as I did. Feeding Hammy the Hamster, each day before lunch, was my classroom job.  Mrs. Case would leave a Hershey Kiss on my desk, as a token of thanks. She never missed a single day thanking me and I never missed a single day feeding Hammy.

My relationship with chocolate grew to a deeper level in middle school. I wanted to take shop class, like my twin brother. But, I was a girl and therefore expected to take…

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Let’s Get Twisted!

Today I had planned on making my twisted herb bread for dinner, but I could not locate my recipe! Then, I remembered that it was one of the first recipes I posted on my blog! Dinner has been saved! I wish I was able to memorize recipes, but it is just not my specialty. I spend much time taking notes when cooking and always remember to save the final draft! Granted, I am still trying to locate a few things after our kitchen renovation…looks like I will add this recipe to my list of items missing in action!
Enjoy!

Growing Self

Happiness is the smell of freshly baked bread!  I often remind myself that happiness comes from within, but it is always nice to have a friend to help out on those extra challenging days…why not bread!  For me, baking bread is another form of creativity.  How golden brown will the crust be?  What shape do I want to experiment with next?   (I have to admit, creating bread turtles brings out a lot of happiness in me!)  So, for this last winter weekend, before spring approaches, I thought my favorite braided herb bread recipe would be the perfect slice of happiness to share. Now, let’s get twisted!

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For the Love of Brussels Sprouts

I have come to the realization, when I look back on my childhood, why I despised vegetables. Every meal was a collection of three things: red meat, mushy vegetables, and buttered bread.  Eating in general was a challenge for me.  I was one of those kids that had an aversion to texture. If my food had a funky feeling in my mouth, it wasn’t going down.  The hacking, coughing and gagging frustrated my mother to no end. Granted, my dog Tiffany loved that I hated vegetables. She sat at my feet, patiently waiting for the mushy veggies to be delivered from my crinkled napkin. She was the healthiest dog on the block!
I have to admit, it took me years to get over my vegetable issues. Don’t get me wrong, I would eat lettuce, carrots, broccoli, cauliflower… the normal choices. But, it wasn’t until I was in my 30s that I really began to embrace the adventures of cooking and eating vegetables. Being an avid gardener, I was determined to grow them all and I became even more determined to find a way to make them taste delicious! Vegetables were put on this earth for a reason and I would learn to love each and every one of them.

Over the years, I conquered one vegetable at a time. In fact, to this day, there are only a few veggies that are not my favorites.  But, I have to admit, there was that one veggie that was a serious challenge…Brussels Sprouts.

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Keep in mind, it had nothing to do specifically with the vegetable and everything to do with my memories of it.  I am amazed how childhood experiences linger and play such a powerful role in decision-making, even as an adult.   When I think back, it seemed as though my Mother cooked these little “slime balls” weekly!   All I remember is that they were mushy and tasted like dirt. I swore, that when I was an adult, I would never eat Brussels Sprouts again…EVER!

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Well…A few years ago, I told Wifey I wanted to grow Brussels Sprouts. We had just been to a local Italian restaurant and had pasta with Brussels Sprouts.  I fell in love!!!   To top it off, I was intrigued by the artistic nature of this plant. Who doesn’t love a gardening challenge!

I could appreciate its beauty, therefore I had to learn to embrace its taste…but how!?  Then it came to me… There is only one simple ingredient that tastes outstanding with anything! Ready for it… Bacon! Once I fused these two beautiful souls together, my life would never be the same. In fact, I feel cheated out of so many years of not eating Brussels Sprouts. To this day, it is my goal in life to catch up on so many years lost. This little round globe of goodness brings joy to my heart, soul and tummy. Trust me on this one, if you struggle with this vegetable, give it one more try.

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I hope you enjoy this Brussels Sprout recipe as much as I do!  I am heading out to the garden, to pick a few stalks, this morning.  Brussels sprouts love the cold weather!

Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Bacon

Ingredients:

  • 1 T honey
  • 3 T balsamic vinegar
  • 1 T olive oil
  • 2 lbs Brussels Sprouts, cut in 1/2
  • 6 slices of bacon, chopped up in fine pieces
  • 3 cloves of fresh garlic, minced
  • salt & pepper to taste

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees  Lightly oil a baking sheet with olive oil
  2. Whisk together the honey and 1 T of the balsamic vinegar.  Set aside
  3. Wash Brussels Sprouts and cut in 1/2.  Spread them in a single layer, onto the oiled baking sheet.  Add 2 T of balsamic vinegar, olive oil, bacon and minced garlic.  Season with salt and pepper. Toss to combine.
  4. Place in the oven and bake for 12-15 minutes.
  5. Stir in the honey mixture
  6. Serve immediately! YUM!

 

Sharing a little Brussels Sprout love from me to you…

Love Yourself…Embrace Yourself…Just Be You…

♥Roda