Monday, October 24, 2016

Maple Roasted Butternut Squash Quinoa Salad with Pecans, Dried Fruit and Gorgonzola

Good morning! How was your weekend? Mine started out cold, grey and ugly but then the sun popped out, the wind died down and it ended up being a beautiful Fall weekend. I spent a lot of time outdoors soaking up the sun, and some time in the kitchen experimenting with a few Fall desserts. 

I also made two soups( which I will share at a letter date) and this scrumptious roasted vegetable salad. During the week I like my meals to be simple and easy and this salad fits the bill perfectly. You can make a big bowl of this salad and eat it, as is, or with greens, you can even add a little protein if you feel like. 

Maple Roasted Butternut Squash Quinoa Salad with Toasted Pecans, Dried Fruit and Gorgonzola Cheese
Adapted from Julia's Album


11/2 cups toasted pecans
3/4 cup dried cranberries
1/4 cup dried cherries
Roasted butternut squash(see below)
1/4 gorgonzola cheese
2 cups cooked quinoa

11/2 lbs butternut squash peeled, seeded and cut into 1 inch cubes
2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/8 tsp. cinnamon
3 tablespoons pure maple syrup

Preheat oven to 400. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil and drizzle with 1 tablespoon of olive oil. In a large bowl combine spices, syrup, oil and squash, mix well then pour onto prepared baking sheet. Bake for 20 minutes until the squash is golden and tender. Set aside to cool.

In a bowl combine the squash, dried fruit, and pecans and cheese, mix well. Plate up a portion of quinoa in each bowl and top with a scoop of squash mixture. 

Note: I forgot to add the cheese. 

Did you make anything tasty this weekend or have any exciting plans? Whatever you did I hope it was fun and relaxing.

I hope that you have a fabulous week.

Saturday, October 22, 2016

Friday Favorites from Love Lola, The Lemon Apron, Veggie Inspired, Collage of Life, After Orange County and More

Photo taken by my sister yesterday in the Midwest. 

Good morning! Happy Friday to you. I hope that your week went well. Mine was very busy and tiring so I am ready to relax. I am hoping that the weather cools off a bit so I can get out and look for some Fall color, so far I have not seen much here.

Image Love Lola

I have been eating copious amount of salad lately so tonight I am going to be feasting on my favorite food pizza. What makes it even better is that it is  pumpkin pizza from Love Lola.  I have a feeling this is going to be one of my new favorites! 

Image from Veggie Inspired

I may have to make these Pumpkin apple and caramelized onion quesadilla from Veggie Inspired as well. 

Image from The Lemon Apron

I will not be making this scrumptious Apple Pie with Cheddar and Thyme Crust this weekend but it is on my list to make for the holidays. This beautiful pie is from a new blog The Lemon Apron that my sister discovered. The recipes, photos and styling are fabulous. 

Image L.L.Bean

This post The L.L. Bean Man from Jeanne at Collage of Life is one of my favorites because not only do we we get to hear about how Jeanne met Mr. H but also because Jeanne is a fellow tartan lover and she has conveniently linked all of the fabulous tartan finds from the new season in one place. 

One of the most beautiful places I have ever visited is the San Juan Islands in Washington state, this week Celia from After Orange County posted about a fabulous vacation rental on Orcas Island on the same island chain. 

Did you find anything interesting this week to share, a book, a movie, a recipe or interesting article? I would love to hear about it so please share. 

I hoe you have a great weekend. 

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Just Curious...Do You Know What Hygge Is?

Good afternoon! I hope that your week is going well so far. We are having a heat wave so the air is back on and the shorts are out. Are you experiencing the same crazy weather? 

In the meantime I am am curious, do you know what hygge is? I have been seeing a lot of books about this subject lately and I was wondering if I was the only one who did not know what it was? 

For those of you who are like me and did not know the meaning of hygge, pronounced hoo-gah, it is basically the Danish concept of nesting. The word roughly translates to cosiness and conviviality, but it encompasses your entire attitude about life. Some say it is hygge that makes the people of Denmark the happiest on earth. 

Although hygge is a concept practiced at any time it really comes it to its own during the harsh winter months. Keep in mind that the winters are long and cold in Denmark, it is dark for 17 hours so making yourself cozy, and happy is one of the best ways to get through it. Candles, dinners with friends and family, slowing down and enjoying life, sharing and appreciating the big and small things in life with those we love, savoring a cup of coffee alone or with others, a good book by the fire wrapped in a warm blanket, snuggling your pups, all of this is hygge. 

If you would like to create a little hygge in your home this winter here are a few things you can do:

Invest in some candles, they say that Denmark it the second largest consumer of candles, Austria is first. 

Slow down and relax, read, and savor your surroundings. 

Get a comfy throw to snuggle in.

Invite friends and family for simple meals, maybe even a pot luck. Remember, it is not about a big production but about being together. 

You can also practice hygge by baking something scrumptious and sharing with friends. 

Bundle up and get out and appreciate the beauty of nature, then come home and enjoy a cup of coco or coffee in a favorite mug. 

What do you think? Do you like the concept? Do you practice hygge already? 

Have a great day! 

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Rhodes Almond Braid Bread

Good morning! I am really excited today because you can find me and a recipe that I shared over on the Rhodes Bread Dough Blog!

Come and check it out if you have time, the recipes is easy and delicious!

Have a great day!

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Monday Musings

Good morning! How was your weekend? Mine was perfect because of its simplicity; beautiful weather, long walks, a trip to the farmers market, a little baking, dinner with new friends and lots of time reading. 

We have new neighbors from Spain and they invited us to meet some of their Spanish co-workers and to have authentic paella. The paella was scrumptious and the company and conversations were enlightening. It is so interesting to me to hear views about our country, the election and of course to learn more about their beautiful country. 

I find that as the  weather turns more to Fall/Winter I am more and more inclined to be at home. Are you the same? Consequently my stack of books and magazines is dwindling, so please share your latest "good reads. "

I am also pinning like a crazy Christmas elf on my nine Christmas Pinterest boards. I am one of those people that love Christmas, the decorations, the music, the Nutcracker, the movie and of course the food, baking and finding the perfect gifts. I am in search of a few new cookies to add to my repertoire, I want to make a buche de noel this year, and I may or may not change up my color scheme. Cataloging all of my "thoughts" on Pinterest is making my life a lot easier. 

What did you do this weekend? Did you relax, read, bake, cook, take a trip, tick a few items off of your bucket list?

Whatever you did I hope it was great and I hope that you have a wonderful week. 

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