blueberry swirl muffins – dairy free

Blueberry Swirl Muffins

these muffins.
they’re the personification of
Baked Goodness.
and i’m not a superlative girl,
so forgive me for
doing what some food bloggers
are guilty of:
extolling the virtues
of said food item with
an over abundance of
and eye roll inducing
saccharine drivel.

let’s just focus on
how i treat these treats
like they’re both
a breakfast item

it’s like starting
and ending
my day correctly,
let’s be honest here,
is the best kind of amazing.
superlatives for the win.

Blueberry Swirl Muffins

Blueberry Swirl Muffins – dairy free
adapted from Honestly Yum, who adapted it from The Cook’s Illustrated Cookbook

makes ~16 muffins

2 cups blueberries​, divided​
1 cup sugar
2 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
2 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
2 large eggs
1/4 cup coconut oil, warm/liquid
1 container (6oz) plain vegan yogurt, i used almond dream
1/4 cup almond milk
zest & juice of 1 lemon

Streusel Topping
1 1/2 TBL sugar
1 1/2 TBL brown sugar
pinch of salt
1/4 cup whole wheat flour
2 1/2 TBL warm ​coconut oil

in a small bowl make the streusel topping by combining everything and mix evenly. set aside.
in a small sauce pan reduce 1 cup of blueberries, mashing with a fork and stirring. you want the berries to break down, the sauce to be thick. strain through a sieve if you’re not keen on the skin/pulp. set aside and cool to room temp.
line muffin tin with silicone/paper liners.

preheat oven 425F.

in a mixing bowl whisk the flour, baking powder, lemon zest and salt. in another bowl whisk eggs + sugar until thick and then add in the coconut oil, yogurt, almond milk and lemon juice. now combine the liquid to dry ingredients, with the remaining blueberries. throw in an extra handful if you’re feeling sassy. (i felt sassy). the mixture will be all sorts of fug, but try not to overmix.

fill muffin cups a little over 3/4 way up, these will expand/rise. (HonestyYum filled it up all the way but i didn’t want any overfilling accidents and having to clean it up. that would’ve been a superlative pain in the ass.) spoon about a teaspoon, more or less, of the reduced blueberry sauce on top of each muffin. use a toothpick or some stick-like kitchen tool and swirl the sauce into the batter. finally, top with streusel topping, amount at your discretion.

i was able to eek out 16 muffins with just enough sauce & steusel.

bake 17 minutes​

remove from oven, allow to cool for a few minutes and then remove from pans to cool completely.

will keep for a week, covered, in fridge.


Blueberry Swirl Muffins

other blueberry recipes:
blueberry clafoutis
blueberry jam danishes
blueberry breakfast cookies
blueberry pie smoothie

around 1 year ago:
vietnamese pickled carrots + daikon
vietnamese vermicelli bowl

blueberry pie smoothie – vegan

Blueberry Pie Smoothie

now that the summer
is beginning its wind down
— the days being cooler
— the nights dipping into the 60s
and i can’t decide if the
AC should be kept on or turned off,
we’re finally getting our groove on
with smoothies
and we’re gonna shut the shop down
in a few short weeks
because i don’t want to start
the day freezing my ass off.
figures, right?
it’s a lush time
of ripe peaches
precious leftover blueberries
i’m already lamenting about autumn
and we still have a good 2 months till then!
i’ll shut up now.

last week we picked up running again.
my goals remain the same:
– run safely, no injuries for this girl.
– finish. it may not be pretty but get it done.
after our first run
dw introduced me to a new juice/vegan/hippy/smoothie joint
it is now my new jam
and this smoothie was inspired by them.
(i will admit
that i’m pretty sure i’m negating my run
by consuming their smoothies
but i don’t care.)

Blueberry Pie Smoothie

blueberry pie smoothie
makes 4 cups, serves 2-4, depending on how generous or stingy you are

note: i didn’t exactly measure everything. it’s all about consistency, how thick or thin you like it. the first time i made this, i used kefir milk (which, btw, is 99% lactose free and i’m able to consume it without wanting to die. WIN!) and for this post, i kept it all vegan. if you don’t have a blueberry pie hanging around, make with fresh blueberries + honey granola or an oatmeal cookie.

2 slices of blueberry pie
1 container of vegan yogurt (6oz), i used Stoneyfield’s O’Soy Yogurt in vanilla
1 cup vegan milk (more or less…), i used almond milk
handful of ice, optional

if you plan this ahead well, make almond milk ice cubes.

in a vitamix, put in the pie slices and vegan milk. whiz until well blended. add the yogurt and whiz some more.

at this point, it’s ready for consumption. it might be thick so you could eat it with a spoon.

you can thin out with more milk (or water). i like to add ice cubes. dw typically doesn’t drink his smoothie until about an hour after i’ve made it, when he’s sitting at his desk at work so the ice keeps it cool and thins it out a little.

either way, it’s delicious. i like the idea of having dessert for breakfast and having the entire day to burn it off.


Blueberry Pie Smoothie

other blueberry recipes:
blueberry clafoutis
blueberry jam danishes
blueberry breakfast cookies

one year ago today:
homemade goldfish crackers!

homemade bánh cướn chay – vegan rolled cake

Bánh Cuốn Chay

today marks 100 days
since gpa’s passing
as is tradition
dw & i went to temple on sunday

the 100 days milestone
is actually a celebration,
signifying the end of tears,
though mourning is up to 3 years.

from my limited knowledge
a vegetarian diet is typical
during the mourning period
i could be spreading rumors
i’m likely spreading rumors

either way,
i finally figured out
how to make bánh cướn,
meaning rolled cake,
and i veganized it
making a mushroom filling
and a spicy soy sauce to dress it

Bánh Cuốn Chay

homemade bánh cướn chay
adapted from luke nguyen

makes about 18 rolled cakes

note: i’ve tried the steam method, years ago, and my gpa laughed at my attempt. it convinced me that this is the kind of dish that is so much easier to purchase already made. however, i’m a stubborn fool. i made this about a month ago, with fairly good results. i used a huge ass heavy bottom pan that was difficult to handle so the crepe came out thicker than i liked. this 2nd time around i bought a 7 1/2″ non-stick pan which was much lighter and easier to maneuver with. the key is to pour the batter when the pan is hot and immediately lid. if you get into a rhythm, good for you, the process is quite pleasant, despite the tender fingertips. also: exact measurements for the filling and sauce are kinda lacking cus i was working on the fly. sorry about that.

spicy garlicy soy sauce – gluten free

1/2 cup gluten free soy sauce, i use tamari
1/4 cup water
2 generous TBL rice vinegar
2-3 tsp sugar
2 tsp fried garlic OR 1 clove fresh garlic, minced
1 red chili, chopped finely, optional

mix everything together in a jar. this is a taste preference, add more of less of each ingredient and adjust according to taste.

1 container of mushrooms (i used baby bella, though any will do), chopped
3 pieces of dried wood ear mushrooms, reconstituted in hot water, chopped
1 small white onion, diced
5-6 strands of chive blossoms, diced
salt/pepper to taste

in saute pan heat up some olive oil, just enough to coat the bottom. when hot add in the diced white onion and saute until fragrant. season with salt. allow the onions to get translucent. next add in the mushrooms and saute until the mixture has reduced a smidge, season with salt/pepper. i let it go for about 5 minutes on med-high heat. take pan off heat, add in about half the diced chive blossoms and mix. put mixture in bowl, set aside.

200 g rice flour
60 g tapioca flour
1/2 tsp salt
600ml (approx. 2 1/2 cups) cold water
oil – veg or canola

add above ingredients in bowl, whisk until combined.

in the pan that you’re gonna use, drizzle some oil to coat the pan. i use a clean rag or paper towl to spread the oil evenly around the pan. the temp is around med-high.

pour a small ladleful of the batter (aim for 2-3 TBL), rotating the pan to cover the base with a thin layer of the batter. immediately cover with lid and allow to cook for about 30 seconds.

have a prepared well-oiled tray/cutting board/plate ready.

remove lid and flip the noodle sheet onto the oiled surface. set aside the pan on a cool burner (though if you’re working with a partner, you can keep on cranking out the sheets)

scoop a TBL or so of the mushroom filling on the sheet, fold the top over, fold the 2nd sides in and then fold top side again to shape a roll.

repeat process until everything is used up, make sure the pan is well oiled between takes. sometimes there’s more filling than the there’s batter, or vice versa. it happens.

top with fried scallions and fried garlic, garnish with the rest of the diced chive blossoms and dress with spicy soy sauce.

additional accompaniments: sliced cucumbers, cilantro, mint, lightly steamed bean sprouts.


Bánh Cuốn Chay

my other vietnamese dishes:
vermicelli noodles (bún thịt nướng)
chicken noodle soup – phở gà
pickled carrots & daikon
beef stew – bò kho

confab | current reads

nephews - reading time

august is here
summer is almost over

i could cry

let’s talk books

i don’t read as often
as i’d like
and i made the decision
this year that
there are so many, many, many
books & reading materials
out there
that should it not hold my attention
i will dump it.
life is too short
time is too scarce
to muddle through shitty words

currently on my kindle:
Guy in Real Life by Steve Brezenoff
The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt

currently on my bookshelf:
On Such a Full Sea by Chang Rae-Lee
Califia’s Daughter by Leigh Richards (reread. because good books deserve to be read over & over & over again)

1K project
networking for introverts
woman in the rainy season

and you.
what are you reading?

nephews - reading time

homemade thai iced tea

Homemade Thai Tea

it was a much anticipated week –
one that would bring
joy & laughter,
likely some self examination
(indeed, much reflection)
along with ample weather indecision:
storms & sunshine abound!
for 7 days dw & i hosted
our nephews,
jewel of boys,
long limbed and boisterous,
sweetly affectionate (still.)
(ps. please always be affectionate.)
infinitely curious
boundlessly active.
and so to add to all that frenzied energy
i made thai iced tea
because you know,
adding caffeine + sugar to all that
seemed like a good idea.
plus, it’s one of Q’s fave beverages.

thai iced tea

thai iced tea
serves 2-3

note: i am not a tea connoisseur, so i emailed a new fave blogger, Bonnie of Thirsty For Tea for some tips. bless her heart, she was so patient with my incessant questions. under her tutelage i bought the tea from teavana, because the three regular cafes and supermarkets i went to didn’t have what i was looking for. also, don’t be alarmed that the finished product doesn’t have a neon orange hue to it. i did all the freaking out for you. i was worried that i messed the recipe somehow. apparently, thai restaurants and cafes/shops that serve thai iced tea use a mix or add the color artificially. i didn’t know, now i do, and so do you. you’re welcome.

4 cups water
4-6 tsp thai black tea
3-4 tsp simple syrup (just water + sugar, i keep this on hand always in the fridge)

i brewed the tea in my coffee press. bring water to a boil. meanwhile, measure out the desired amount of tea. the package says 1-1.5 tsp for every 8oz/1 cup. i didn’t want too strong of a drink, as Q is only 12 and i’m not sure about giving kids too much caffeine or whatever.

pour boiled water into press carefully. allow to steep for 2-3 minutes. i may have let it go for 5 minutes, i was busy making dinner. carefully press down the plunger. pour the tea into a carafe or in my case, a jar. allow to cool. refrigerate.

to serve, fill a glass with ice. pour tea about 2/3 of way. sweeten with simple syrup to taste, top with half/half or non-dairy milk.


Homemade Thai Tea