Coconut Flavored Scones

Breakfast, Desserts | March 17, 2016 | By

Coconut Flavored Scones

When I was in Ireland, there wasn’t a day I didn’t indulge in a scone. A mix between crumbly pastry and dense cake, scones were the quintessential food item that just screamed “Irish” to me. So, what better thing to share on St. Patrick’s Day than my take on the traditional scone: Coconut Flavored Scones.

Though my research shows that scones are not native to Ireland (Scotland claims to be the home of the scone), someone obviously forgot to tell the Irish people that since scones are available on almost every breakfast menu, bakery counter and even convenient store. And, even if you ate one every day, you would hardly get tired of them — they come in almost every flavor combination available. My favorites were baked with cherries and other seasonal berries; they were so delicious I almost want to go back just so I can buy more cherry/berry scones.

Now that vacation is over, I’ve gone back to something that more closely resembles my normal diet — restricting my sugar intake, increasing my veggies and all-around trying to eat more healthy. This means, no more Irish scones — full of butter, whole milk and refined white flour.

That’s where this coconut flavored scone recipe comes into play. I replaced the white flour with whole wheat, sour cream for yogurt and swapped out the butter for coconut oil. To add an extra coconut taste, I performed my final swap: replacing whole milk with coconut milk.

Coconut oil is like the champion of superfoods. Not only is it great for your heart and can assist in things like weight loss, it also makes your kitchen smell amazing when you cook with it and your body feel great when you use it as a body lotion or hair mask for a little extra TLC. I always try to buy organic to make sure that none of this superfood’s superpowers are lost to things like pesticides or additives used to improve shelf life. After all, what’s the point of using a superfood if you are going to cancel all the goodness out with junk? (If you are interested in swapping some of your kitchen ingredients for coconut oil, check out this link here for a free 15 oz jar of organic Nutiva Coconut Oil from Thrive Market. Listen to me when I say Hailey and I wouldn’t just recommend anything unless we wholeheartedly believed in it. Thrive Market’s mission is very similar to our own — to make organic, healthy living easy. Now how could we not stand behind that?)

Anyways…back to the coconut flavored scones. Even after all the swaps, the scones came out even better than some of its Irish rivals. Better yet, I don’t have to feel as guilty indulging in one of these every once in a while.

I hope you enjoy this recipe! Cheers!

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A Taste of Dublin: Gallagher’s Boxty House

A Taste Of | March 14, 2016 | By

Gallagher's Boxty House

As I mentioned last week, I recently went on my dream trip to Ireland. I’ve been planning this trip since I was a teenager and let me tell you, it was everything I thought it would be and more.  On one of the last full days in Dublin, my mom and I decided to visit the main “must-sees” — Kilmainham Gaol for a short history lesson on the 1916 Easter Rising, the National Museum of Ireland to peek at the bog people, Temple Bar to see this popular nightlife spot and this boxty house.

Boxty is a traditional Irish pancake made mostly of grated and mashed potatoes. It can be cooked in various ways (boiled, on a griddle, fried, etc.) and can be served plain or with a mixture of toppings and stuffings. Basically, boxty is one versatile, fluffy pancake. 

Since we only wanted a quick bite to eat so we could continue exploring Dublin, my mom and I decided to order light and share. The portions are more than enough to keep one person full, so sharing two dishes and a bottle of Guinness was super satisfying. And, with dishes between 15-20 euros, I’d consider this a reasonably priced find for Dublin. Note that if you are looking for a breakfast boxty, plan on eating late. Like most other restaurants (and sights) in Ireland, things open late and close even later.

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Teriyaki Salmon with Cauliflower Rice

Main Dishes | March 9, 2016 | By

Teriyaki Salmon with Cauliflower Rice

Hi everyone! After a very busy, travel-filled February, I’m back to blogging. Last month, not only did I get to spend a week in NYC for work (and catch up with Hailey), I spent 10 days in Ireland on a little mother-daugher trip. Though I instagrammed a ton of pics from our trip, I’ll be posting a little recap from each city in the coming weeks, so be sure to check back in.

When you’re basically living out of a suitcase for a month, it is a little hard to make sure your fridge and pantry are properly stocked. That’s where I had to get a little creative in my cooking, and where I first got the inspiration for this recipe: Teriyaki Salmon with Cauliflower Rice.

Salmon is a great freezer friendly fish option — I usually have one or two filets stashed in my freezer at any given time — and cauliflower rice is a great healthy alternative to white rice. If you can’t find it in the grocery store, it’s really easy to make with just a few pulses in the food processor. Then, just add a couple veggies and a sauce and you’ve got a 10-minute, no-fuss dinner. 

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Fresh Vietnamese Spring Rolls with Peanut Sauce

Sides & Starters | March 7, 2016 | By

Vietnamese Spring Rolls

So I guess this recipe may be a little out of season…but I think I’m just way too anxious for spring to start. We’ve had a couple random seasonally warm days here in NYC this February (interspersed with some snowy ones), and it has gotten me dreaming of summer. Fresh Vietnamese spring rolls are one of my favorite healthy snacks, and they obviously get better with fresh, seasonal ingredients, a.k.a in the summer time. That being said, I believe there is no reason they can’t be replicated in winter as well!

The best part about fresh spring rolls is that you can literally add any kind of veggie, seafood or meat you desire. I love having a mix of brightly colored veggies in mine, like shredded carrots, purple cabbage, red peppers and green onions. The colors show through the translucent rice-based spring roll paper, making them fun and festive. I’m also an herb queen with this recipe – I throw in tons of fresh herbs like cilantro, mint and basil. 

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Valentine’s Day Cake Truffles

Desserts | February 14, 2016 | By

Valentine's Day Cake Truffles

Happy Valentine’s Day!! Hailey here, after a long hiatus from the blogosphere. Business school has turned out to mean much more work than I anticipated, but with the internship recruiting season behind me, I am excited to have more time to blog. This is officially my first post since the beginning of fall semester, and I have to say I’ve really missed it! The longer I live in New York the more I feel that I am conforming to the NYC lifestyle which involves minimal cooking and lots of eating out, so I am going to make a conscious effort to reduce these bad habits. 

Last night one of my girlfriends hosted a “Gal-entines Day” dinner to celebrate love among friends. She cooked a fabulous meal, we drank wine, we watched Justin Bieber music videos…ok maybe I shouldn’t admit some of these things. But I was really excited to try out a Valentine’s Day Cake Truffle recipe that I sort of made up, but took inspiration from cake pops. I really don’t like cake pops very much — they are adorable but always taste way too sweet and dense. I started this recipe with my favorite white cake batter, but cut the sugar in half since I knew I wanted white chocolate on the outside. :) I also improvised a white buttercream frosting to condense the cake truffles a little bit and help them stick, but also added much less powdered sugar than typical icing. 

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