My Waffle House

My Waffle House

We woke up to a steady rainfall and rumbling tummies  Not sure why rain equates to craving waffles on this drizzly morn but it did. I am not a fan of Waffle House because it is essentially a little, yellow box of grease so I broke open the newly acquired, The Love and Lemons Cookbook, by Austin author Jeanine Donofrio, and decided to test drive a new recipe titled Vegan Carrot Waffles. RM groaned behind me as he peered over my shoulder at the title of the recipe.  #WaffleHouse is trending in his mind. My healthy cooking preferences often tests his middle of America meat, potato, vegetable mentality. But I ignored his whimpers because when I reviewed the ingredient list, while vegan, these waffles were also dairy free. And the carrots made sense because who doesn’t love a good carrot cake?

We have two family members whose bodies recently have declared war on dairy in any form. But they still love waffles.  So Mom wanted to give this waffle recipe a shot so when they visit next time we can pull out the beloved Texas shaped waffle maker and whip up a batch. Admit it, how many states are so proud they have a waffle iron shaped to their image? Ok, Colorado, maybe, since it is the state most resembling a square or perhaps, Wyoming? Which one is more Belgian waffle-like to you, dear reader.

Back to the recipe.

In a bowl, combine 2 cups of whole wheat flour, 2 tsp. baking powder, 2 Tablespoons ground yellow flax (I keep a baggie full in my freezer, don’t you?) and 1/2 tsp. of cinnamon.

In another bowl, combine 1 cup grated carrots (about 3 medium size ones), 2 cups almond milk at room temperature, 1/4 cup of melted coconut oil (I pick this item up at Trader Joe’s (TJ’s)), 1 tsp. of your best vanilla, 2 Tablespoons of real maple syrup and a dash of sea salt.

Fold the carrot goo into the dry ingredients and stir until just combined.  Cook the batter in a preheated waffle iron.  They come out fluffy but crisp on the edges.   Serve with maple syrup (and a little bit of butter if you dare), fresh berries and mint from your garden.   A side of bacon can’t hurt especially on such a mucky Sunday morning.  I cook my bacon on a cookie tray in a hot oven.  You may elect to sprinkle a little honey and smoked black pepper on the strips before baking (put down some aluminum foil on the pan first for easy clean up). I like my bacon crunchy too.

This is one hearty breakfast.  A Texas-sized waffle will fill you up.

Now that the sun it out, go out and plow the back forty. It never stays wet and dreary for long in the Lone Star State.

You should check out the author’s Love and Lemons blog for more wholesome, yummy options. Pretty pictures too.







How to stay cool – Tracy’s Tips

How to stay cool – Tracy’s Tips

This time of year in North Texas we really start to heat up.  Temperatures regularly reach 100+ degrees.  This week there is promise of a slight cool front and rain and we can’t believe it.  We never get rain in July so I am very cautiously optimistic about the forecast.  After living in the fort for nearly 27 years, I have developed survival skills for me and my brood to beat the heat of July, August, and September.  Here are my recommendations:

  1.  Make/buy popsicles and lick them slowly until your tongue turns a neon bright color and the surface temperature registers below 50 degrees.  I wonder how one would take a temperature of her tongue?   Did you know that FW now has a store that sells only popsicles?
  2. Go to the movies – Texas movie theatres are so well air-conditioned– reminiscent of trips to the local meat locker with my mom.  Brrr and take a sweater.
  3. Take a cold shower after work – it refreshes you and you feel renewed if you have to go back out in the elements.  You may even want to take a shower over your lunch hour just to make it through the afternoon especially if you have to go out much.
  4. Don’t go outside between 2 and 4 p.m. – just don’t do it.
  5. Happy Hour is 2-4 p.m. at Sonic – you can risk it for a slushy limeade but only if you go in a car with a high functioning air conditioner.
  6. Sleep in your birthday suit.  Have a robe handy in case of emergencies.
  7. There is always 7-11 and their famous Slurpies – watch for brain freeze.
  8. Take a dash through a sprinkler and then stand facing a breeze.  You will get goose bumps on your arms for about a minute.  Repeat.
  9. Crank up the a/c and don’t move.  Read a book and consume copious amounts of iced tea.  Place a fan directed just at you.  Don’t allow anyone to sit on the couch with you – too much body heat.
  10. Drink lots of water and apply ice packs to forehead, under arms and behind knees.  Feels divine and shocking at the same time.
  11. Go on vacation to Canada.
  12. Get an automatic car starter so you can get that a/c running before you get in it.
  13. It is worth it to park in the shade and walk a little farther just so you don’t return to a car steering wheel that burns like hot lava.
  14. Go on a night hike taking with you a flash light and a cup of ice to suck on as you explore the nocturnal activities happening along Ashland.  Hike slowly and in flip flops.
  15. Get up with the chickens, while it is still dark, and water your garden with the hose.  Periodically, direct the hose on your feet and when necessary down the back of your neck.
  16. Soak in any body of water you can find – swimming pool, swimming hole, creek, lake, pond, swamp, reservoir, tidal pool (not likely in North Texas), or stock tank.  Always pack a swimming suit and a towel just in case the opportunity arises.
  17. Go on vacation to Alaska.
  18. Lie on top of your bed covers, directly under the ceiling fan, turn off the lights, and rest for 30 minutes.  Move as little as possible.  This is not a nap but a proven cooling off technique.  Works really well with hot three olds and menopausal women.
  19. I know your dentist tells you not to but go ahead and chomp on some ice.  Chomp on a lot of ice.  Sonic ice is wondrous.
  20. Did I say, Bluebell?  Vanilla bean is my favorite.  Eat ice cream slowly with a glass of ice coffee and work on a jigsaw puzzle at a slow pace.

Stay cool out there and let’s hope for some much needed showers.  Did I just hear a crack of thunder?  Go stand out in the rain!

summer rain 1