One of the wonderful benefits of this blogosphere is making friends with fellow bloggers. I have many blogger friends (some of whom I’ve had the fortune to meet in person) that I’ve made in the last year and a half. Another benefit, testing recipes for the friends coming out with cookbooks or those who want someone else to try their recipe out before posting it on their blog. The only thing I love more than developing my own recipes that I dream up in my head, is testing recipes for friends.
September 12th, 2011, Hallie Klecker of Daily Bites released her first cookbook, The Pure Kitchen. I started following Hallie on her blog last Spring and immediately fell in love with her Carrot Cake Bites. I dislike carrot cake. I think it’s more the cream cheese frosting on the carrot cake that I really dislike. But, if you presented me with carrot cake or zucchini bread, I’d choose the latter. Hallie’s Carrot Cake Bites made me love carrot cake. Okay, not really carrot cake, but lets just say, I’d be willing to give carrot cake a second try.
I eagerly volunteered to test recipes for The Pure Kitchenbecause I love Hallie’s whole foods approach. Her recipes are straight-forward and easy
to make. I tested Fiesta Guacamole, Black Bean & Quinoa Patties, Meatballs with Quick Braised Collards, and Berry Bowls with Fudgy Pecan Crumble. The Fiesta Guacamole goes wonderfully with the Black Bean & Quinoa Patties. Her Black Bean & Quinoa Patties inspired me to stop thinking about how to make black bean burgers and start playing around with black beans and veggies. The Meatballs with Quick-Braised Collards was the first time I fixed collard greens and I thoroughly enjoyed them.
The Berry Bowls with Fudgy Pecan Crumble with ridiculously quick and easy to make. In fact, Chaz was eating ice cream or something and I just wanted something sweet. So, I got up and made the Berry Bowls with Fudgy Pecan Crumble a day earlier than I planned. I took leftovers to work with me for snacks because it’s so much more than a super healthy dessert. It’s a super healthy snack, too!
I received my copy of The Pure Kitchen today and the most difficult part of going through it, is trying to figure out which recipes I want to try for my menu next week. And not just
dinner recipes, but breakfast and desserts, too! My mouth is watering just looking at the pictures of the dishes I tested. I have a feeling I’ll be using The Pure Kitchen for my meal planning for quite some time.
You don’t have to be gluten-free to enjoy Hallie’s recipes. You just need a desire to want to eat healthier whole foods. If I was still able to eat gluten and just doing a whole foods diet, I would definitely buy The Pure Kitchen. Oh wait. I did!