ashley nicole avenue

a journey to healthy balance

Catch-up and LARABAR Review March 3, 2011

Filed under: My Life,Salad Beast,Veggies — ansauls @ 10:11 pm

SURPRISE!!!! I have missed y’all so much and needed to respond to some sweet readers who have requested an update. While it has been a nice break of not photographing every morsel of my food and giving myself some freedom,  I do miss writing. However, my creativity and adventure in the kitchen is back, and I am going to go with that…for now 😉 hehe Y’all are some convincing sweeties! Don’t worry, I’ve been making your recipes like crazy and having oodles of fun reading about your lives. It’s funny, I’ll think of something I’d write about or a recipe I’m craving and one of you will post about it that day. Maybe we’re all somehow connected. I’d like to think so 😉

 As weird as it is to start photographing your food when you start a blog, it’s equally as weird to stop hehe. SOOOO, here’s some fun things I have done in the kitchen.

1. Favorite dinner so far: I had never tried a stuffed pepper with lentils, so I did a yellow sweet bell pepper with green lentils one night for dinner. I added sautéed onion and celery with garlic to the lentil mix for some flava! I’ve done this in the past with quinoa mixed with dried cranberries and almonds. It’s a good dinner for Fall. I have also started treating myself to a 1/2 glass of wine when I make a fancy schmancy dinner (aka not leftovers) if I want it. It’s a treat for being creative and having fun with new ingredients!

2. It’s still important to “set the table for yourself,” even if you’re eating on the go. hehe

3. Favorite breakfast: I made the most amazing pancakes EVER…get this: Peanut Butter Flour, ,maple, dark chocolate chip, banana, blueberry pancakes. It was seriously all my favorite flavors in one. Super healthy, and topped with peanut flour sauce. WOW! If you really want the recipe, let me know. Sooooooo yummy!

4. Favorite lunch: I’ve been wanting to try Socca but keep forgetting to buy the right flour/some of our stores don’t have it around my little town. I was really craving pizza the other day and wanting to clean out the refrigerator before I leave for Disney World!!!!! Soooooo, ta dah!!! Thank-you Carrie for sweet potato Staple Sunday because I DID have a sweet potato.

 I made pizza crust out of my sweet potato, some homemade quinoa flour (another fun new thing for me), and a few other easy ingredients. It was great! I was able to make 3 small crusts to have leftovers on throughout the week. I ended up making another pizza with one and crumbled 1/2 another on a salad beast, and I topped 1/2 with Trader Joe’s Superfruit Spread. So many options here!

The pizza I made was mostly veggies (I promise the crust is under there!)…artichoke hearts, spinach, sun-dried tomatoes, Bragg’s nutritional yeast, Garlic Gold nuggets, mushrooms. I just used the crust, topped it with a little bit of organic pasta sauce sweetened with agave that I needed to use up, then sautéed the veggies with a little EVOO and minced garlic and plopped them on top. Pizza craving…check! And SO much better than delivery or fast food! Watch out, Amy’s Roasted Veggie No Cheese Pizza, Ashley Nicole Pizza is purdy good!!! hehe

That’s just a little of the fun I’ve been having. Creativity is definitely back for me as cooking has been for me 😉 Thank-you so much for your support!!!


EXCITING NEWS!!! Erica from LARABAR sent me some goodies to review. As y’all know, I LOVE LARABAR and am solely loyal to them for at least 1 snack a day hehe

This review gave me a chance to get creative in that LARABAR can be a lot more that just a snack bar…

1. Jocalat (I had never tried a Jocolat before!) Chocolate Mint…My thoughts for this were to use it as a topping on Katie’s Raw Mint Chocolate Chip Milkshake. I mean, it is Girl Scout Cookie Time, and we all have a little girl scout in us somewhere, right? 😉 What a great dessert!!!!

2. Jocalat Chocolate Coffee…I’m thinking “what a good micro-brownie?!”

Microwave Brownie Trick:

  1. Unwrap a Chocolate Jocalat bar, and place on a microwave-safe plate.
  2. Microwave for about 15 seconds, then open the door and turn.
  3. Then microwave 10 seconds.
  4. Open door (to let some heat out) and microwave 10 more seconds if you want it really melty.

Perhaps with a cup of decaf coffee? Hmmmm…yes please!!! This bar would also be great crumbled on a chocolate coffee smoothie or frozen for about 30 minutes to make fudge. So many options here, especially for a girl-on-the-go. I am a semi-homemade kind of girl during the week, and this is a quick yet healthy dessert option. SO worth it!!!

3. Cashew Cookie …like I said, I’m a homemade kind of girl. I read all about your fun desserts but do not make time at 9 p.m. to drag everything out in the kitchen for raw cheesecake or a fun tart; HOWEVER, cashew cookie to the rescue! You can heat this one up with the micro-trick, roll it out to make a “crust” and top it was “raw cheesecake” or any other tart you’d want to make (key lime pie perhaps?!). It’s a quick easy Single Lady Crust that is a perfect, healthy dessert for 1. Try it and let me know what you top it with.

4. Blueberry Muffin…We STILL do NOT have this delicious flavor anywhere around me yet. What a treat from Erica! I ate this one as a “blueberry muffin” for breakfast with a “Purple People Eater” (mixed berry/frozen banana/avocado/almond milk) smoothie. It was fan-tastic!!! Oh, I hope it comes to the stores soon!

In short, have fun with your “LARAs.” I can’t wait to see what Miss Erica sends me next!!! They are so much more than a snack bar. Thanks, Erica!!!

 Leave a comment! I miss y’all!

Love and health,

ashley nicole