August 2013 Recipes
August went by in a blur, and in many ways the end of August usually marks the end of summer. However, given the heatwave in San Diego, summer is still going strong.
Here’s what I made this month:
Skinny Chocolate Peanut Butter Graham Fudge Pops (vegan, GF) – 80 calories
No-Bake Samoas Cookie Granola Bars (vegan, GF)
Fudgy Chocolate Brownie Microwave Mugcake with Vanilla Glaze - Make in under 5 minutes
Noteworthy Events and Reflections
Aruba - We went to Aruba for half the month. We were going to stay the whole month like we do every year in August, but came home early because we’re moving. The trip was planned before we knew we were for sure moving, and we needed to find a new place, start packing, and do all that fun stuff that needs to happen before a move. Fun stuff, yeah. Sure.
We had a great couple of weeks in Aruba. We went on a Sunset Sail, soaked up time at the beach, I got in some great long runs along the beach, I tended to all kinds of honey-do things at my house there, and we shared lots of special moments and laughter with our 6-year old before another school year starts. More beach pics here.
Weekend Things - We’re moving soon. Packing is a never ending job, but the new place will be so worth it for all the reasons mentioned.
Pertaining to the recipes, I made a ridiculous amount of peanut butter recipes. A whopping 9 of the new recipes this month contained peanut butter, peanut butter chips, peanut butter cups, peanut butter candies, or some form of peanut butter.
You’d think after writing a cookbook with over 100 peanut butter recipes, I’d be sick of it or run out of ideas. Quite the contrary. I think I love it more now than I did when I was writing the book, and new ideas come to me all the time. To the point I have to consciously not make more and work in a variety.
Normally I plan out my content a few weeks in advance so that I showcase a variety of recipes; breads, cookies, cakes, a token savory, smoothies, and so forth. And I try for a mix of flavors from chocolate to peanut butter to fruity. But due to the craziness of my month, I didn’t plan my content out very well, and apparently my brain was in full-on peanut butter mode, and I just kept making things with it. You’re not complaining though, right?
By default, peanut butter is a very forgiving ingredient to worth with, especially in my limited Aruban kitchen, and it’s also great in no-bake recipes, and the stars aligned for an abundance of peanut butter recipes.
I also made a lot of bars (six) plus 1 recipe for brownies. I love bars, blondies, brownies and anything I can bake in a pan because it’s so much faster, easier, and less fussy than making individual cookies.
There was only 1 new cookie recipe this month, an all-time low. Normally it’s 3-4 per month. But the Reese’s Pieces Peanut Butter Cookies with Peanut Butter Buttercream were some of the best cookies I’ve made all year, and are highly recommended.
I made a couple Skinny Recipes – Fudge Pops and a Margarita Fizz, as well as Gluten-Free 2-Ingredient Bars that taste every bit as good as their gluten-containing competitors.
The drinks I made – the Malibu Sunset and the Margarita Fizz – make me happy when I look at the colors. They’re so cheery and bright.
The bars I made make me cringe when I look at the beige, yellow, dingy, and darkness of the photos. My house in Aruba has horrible lighting. The house was built to keep the sunlight out to keep the house cool, but it’s horrible for photography where you want the light in. I’m hypercritical of my images and want them to convey how good the food really tasted.
I made 3 cakes - Peanut Butter and Strawberry, which tastes like PB&J but I don’t think people could get their mind around the flavor combo because it’s hardly been pinned, but it’s one of the best cakes I’ve ever made. The Browned Butter Cake was excellent, but the photography doesn’t do it justice. The final cake is the Microwave Mugcake, and it’s a new recipe from this week so I’ll have to wait and see how it does.
All in all, given that I was ‘on vacation’ for half the month, and have been in packing hell for the remaining half, I’m proud that I post every day or 6 days a week. I love my blog and my readers and thanks to everyone who stops by. I appreciate you guys!
Previous 2013 Recaps
What did you do or make in this month that was memorable?