This month the Stonyfield Clean Plate Club is partnering with Justin’s Peanut Butter, a small batch nut butter company dedicated to community involvement and sustainable practices while creating delicious, high quality products.
Justin’s products are available online and in grocery stores nationwide. Since first bite several years ago, I’ve been a fan of Justin’s Maple Almond Butter. It’s a jar in my normal rotation for eating with carrot sticks and apple slices, or making adult “ants on a log” smearing a spoonful onto a piece of celery and adding dried cranberries or blueberries. And I can officially report that Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups make a great treat after a long shopping trip. [Thanks, Target check out aisle.]
When it came time to combine the super powers of Stonyfield and Justin’s, I decided to pair Stonyfield Plain Greek Yogurt and Justin’s Honey Peanut Butter. PROTEIN POWER!!!
This recipe is ridiculously simple and can easily be customized depending on your needs. [Next time I want to add coconut flakes and chai seeds!] It is a colorful, FREGGIE-FILLED side dish that makes a great table addition at your end of summer picnic. The leftovers keep really well in the fridge, making this one of my favorite recent bring-to-work lunches, too. Toss in some diced grilled chicken and serve with mixed greens: office lunch upgrade!!
Honey Peanut Butter Yogurt Crunch End of Summer Picnic Salad
½ cup Stonyfield Plain Greek Yogurt
2 Tablespoons Justin’s Honey Peanut Butter
2 Tablespoons honey
3 cups diced apples [I prefer a small dice for this salad]
2 cups shredded carrots
½ cup golden raisins [we love Trader Joe’s California Gold Raisins!]
In a small bowl, whisk together yogurt, peanut butter and honey until well combined.
In a large bowl, toss together diced apples [I used a mix of granny smith, gala and red delicious!], shredded carrots, and raisins.
Poor yogurt mixture over salad ingredients and fold until well coated. Store in refrigerator until ready to serve.
This month Stonyfield Clean Plate Club is partnering with sustainable clothing brand prAna to ask what we are craving this summer! You know I love a seasonal goal list, so I spent some time this thinking about what has the potential to bring me JOY this summer and created a 2016 #SummerCravingsTo Do List for myself.
Here are the things I’m craving this summer and will myself to make time for before autumn arrives…
#SummerCravings To Do List
Sway my way at outdoor concerts. Is there anything better than being outdoors warm evening listening to live tunes as the sun sets into sweet summer nights? I think not! Thankfully, there is a park very near by that has a variety of amphitheater performances all season long. I’ve also seen a handful of local bars hosting outdoor shows, too. I could get down for jams with cider and pub food! Who’s in?
Get away from my Weekend Leggings routine. I’m uber thankful for this month’s partnership with prAna giving me the chance to take a pair of the Kara Jean our for a spin. These pants come in a variety of solid colors and prints, too; my pair is indigo. I love how soft and stretchy these low-rise slim-fit jeans are, but my favorite two features are the length [perfect for my fellow tall ladies!] and the beautiful design detail on the button. The Kara retail for $89 regular price, which is a bit outside of my normal clothing price-point for a pair of jeans, but I’ve seen them on sale for $59.50 which is much more my style. For a chance to win a pair of Kara Jeans for yourself, leave a comment on this post telling me what’s on your #SummerCraving To Do List!
Pack a breakfast picnic. Who says picnics can’t happen in the morning? We’ve got a great location a couple blocks from THS HQ; just close enough that even a pre-work day breakfast picnic would be do-able!
Sip on Shugarmom’s Summer Slush is a summertime staple. We recently picked up new rainbow colored lidded containers that will be perfect for storing batches in the freezer!
Create some more s’mores! Can we talk about these 9 fancy-them-up s’more recipes? [Side note: I really dig the stuff that is shared on the Shari’s Berries blog, and this is yet another example of that.]
Venture to outdoor Happy Hour with my co-workers. There are a handful of locations in Schenectady with great patios and there is one specific location I’m really looking forward to visiting – Centre Street Pub. I’ve visited inside for trivia a handful of Tuesday evenings, but I’ve yet to take advantage of the outdoor space which I’ve heard has a great vibe and includes yard games like corn hole. I also know of some rooftops in need of a visit soon; I’m looking at you Nico’s.
Build a time capsule. Shameless reminder of these “Let’s Make a Time Capsule” instructions from #THS30Days.
Enjoy COLD foods. Fresh fruit and yogurt for breakfast, stacked sandwiches for lunch, crunchy crisp salads when it comes time for dinner and endless frozen treats for dessert. I’ve been collecting some refreshing meal ideas here: Summer Yums
Add more tarty citrus drinks. Fresh squeezed lemonade is one of the BEST nostalgic summertime treats, and lately I’ve been all about lime beverages after trying [and falling for] this Stewart’s Fountain Classics Key Lime soda on a whim. I’m all about tart, sweet, citrusy drinks right now. As a matter of fact, lemon and lime tarty goodness totally inspired my smoothie creating in the kitchen this month.
juice from one medium lemon [approx. 2 Tablespoons]
Add ingredients in order listed to single-serve blender cup. Pulse until well blended. Enjoy!
Both of these smoothies are fabulous, but the Straw-Cherry Limeade Smoothie blasted to the top of my favorite smoothies list so much so that it has replaced my previous go-to morning blend [Pineapple Coconut Cherry] which I haven’t made since first sipping this new fav!
Hey, you!! Don’t forget: For a chance to win a pair of super soft, hella-flattering prAna Kara Jeans for yourself, leave a comment on this post telling me what’s on your #SummerCraving To Do List! I’ll choose a winner at random after Wednesday, June 15th so be sure to enter by then!
February is known for a lot of important annual celebrations and fun holidays, and 2016 is turning it up on the party front thanks to Mardi Gras, the Super Bowl, and Chinese New Year joining the regulars: Ground Hogs, award shows, and you better not-forget-it-even-though-its-been-over-for-10-days-VALENTINE’S DAY. It was a no brainer when I heard that Stonyfield is partnering with Divine Chocolate to celebrate love this February that I should use it as an opportunity to celebrate something that I love, too.
Divine Chocolate is co-owned by the 85,000 farmer members of Kuapa Kokoo, the cooperative in Ghana that supplies the cocoa for each bar of Divine. As owners, they get a share in the profits, a say in the company, and a voice in the global marketplace.
I was inspired by something I love very much when day-dreaming-up this recipe: US PRESIDENTS!!! Totally on point since February is also host to several important days in Presidential History, including but not limited to the best holiday to the world of THS – President’s Day!! Though it’s not an off-of-work holiday for my office, the past several years I’ve tried to bribe my coworkers into celebrating with me by bringing in POTUS Day treats for the group.
Here’s a ramble-y explanation of how this recipe came together: I have made a few variations on one of FDR’s favorite birthday cakes in the past; a recipe featuring the mighty “with their powers combined” WOAHS! of rich chocolate and smooth coffee. And I’m well experienced in using Greek yogurt in baked goods, and the Stonyfield Smooth & Creamy Whole Milk yogurt I keep well stocked in my fridge [I use it in cooking ALL THE TIME] was sure to make the same moisture magic.
When it came to the major flavor players in this POTUS loaf game, the coffee and the vanilla, I went with two favorite powerhouses. A favorite bean of so many people we know, including my Dad who gifted us this batch, Raven’s Brew was a must for the coffee element. This coffee is so silky smooth with a deep, dark flavor, which seemed like a great pairing for the chocolate in the cake and the Divine milk chocolate featured in the topping.
As for the vanilla, years ago we were gifted some Watkins extracts and flavorings from a regular visitor to the coffee shop, and since then the brand has been a go to for pure vanilla. Using quality spices and ingredients really take your dishes up a notch.
This loaf cake is a simple recipe, but what really knocks it out of the park is the ganache. The process for making the topping couldn’t be easier, and yet adding it totally elevates the cake loaf. Using a decadent, quality chocolate like Divine brings the topping to A+ status in my book. Just look at that chocolate, glazy goodness!!!!
Chocolate Java New Deal Celebration Loaf with Milk Chocolate Hazelnut Ganache
6 T unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 1/4 C sugar
2 eggs, beaten
1 3/4 C all purpose flour
1/2 C cocoa powder
1 1/2 t baking powder
1/2 t baking soda
1 t salt
6 oz. plain, Whole Milk Stonyfield yogurt
1/2 C brewed STRONG coffee, chilled
1 t vanilla
2 Milk Chocolate Hazelnut Divine Chocolate Bars, chopped into small pieces [I cut each tiny square into 2-3 pieces]
1 c heavy cream
PREP STEP: make sure your butter is at room temp and your coffee has been brewed and chilled.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Prepare a loaf pan by lining with parchment paper.
Cream butter and sugar. Add the beaten eggs and fold together. This is your batter base.
In a separate bowl, whisk flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, and salt together.
In another bowl, whisk yogurt, coffee, and vanilla.
Alternating between the two and adding about 1/3 of each mix at a time, fold the dry mix and wet mix to the batter base. Mix until just combined.
Pour batter into the prepared loaf pan. Bake for 1 hour.
Remove from the oven; cool in pan for 15 minutes.
Remove from pan and place on rack; let cool completely.
Make the ganache:
Put chocolate pieces in a heat proof bowl, while heating the heavy cream on the stove over medium low until it’s slightly simmering.
Pour cream over chocolate and let stand 6-8 minutes.
Whisk until smooth.
Cool completely, whisking on occasion.
Once ganache is cool, immediately spoon over top of loaf.