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I've been blogging over at Our Sleeping Flowers these days. Still me, and still delicious, come join me!

How was your weekend? I'm pretty sure there were about 10 different kinds of pie at our thanksgiving feast, one being the cream cheesecake that I thought my mother was going to forego for simplicity's sake. She reprimanded herself and made it anyway because she realized it's the beacon of our family's thanksgiving meal, next to the cranberry jello.

After we had relaxed a bit from our hearty meal we bundled up, leaving the dishes unclean, and went to a nearby hill where we went night sledding, everyone except my brother and his sleeping babe. Considering it was barely above zero degrees, yes zero, we lasted about a half hour; we're rockstars.

The next day was filled with shopping, movie watching, visiting with old friends and nibbling on leftovers and pie throughout the day. Before we headed home we stopped by Temple Square to see the lights, is it just me or does it seem like they do less each year?

Saturday we pulled out the Christmas decor, set up half of what we have accrued over the last five years and gave the other half to our local thrift store all the while singing along the rat pack, ella, and nat. We ate a few more bites of cold pie and sipped some hot cider before bedtime. It was a lovely weekend, and I am excited for the next few weeks as we prepare for Christmas. how was your holiday? do you still have leftovers?

check out this list of some of our favorite cookies to get you baking! don't you love this time of year, despite the cold?

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today i am thankful for...

family that live nearby. even though an hour is sometimes too far
earth balance butter. because sometimes coconut oil just won't do
red mittens. and the little hands that fit inside
seeded dandelion heads. because even if they're bare and frozen, she will still pick them and blow
maple syrup. because it's my very favorite
giggling. because even if it's silly, it feels good and shows off my happy wrinkles
pumpkin chiffon pie. because even if i accidentally made it with sweet potato, i just might eat it all
a blue hand knit cowl. because my cousin sister made it and when i wear it, i think of her. and miss her
four wheel drive. because even if it's not supposed to snow, it just might
you. because i love getting your e-mails, comments, and creating long distance friendships with such incredible people.

here's wishing you a lovely holiday.

We will be celebrating this Thanksgiving holiday in an over crowded house with beloved family, a few good movies, and lots of food. We may use my mother's china and silverware, the crystal will likely be filled with mulled apple cider, and the table will definitely be stuffed with the traditional family dishes we love eating year after year. There will be a few dairy free changes made for the babe and I, but I doubt anyone will even notice. We will be enjoying the best company, sharing stories, jokes and laughing a lot. Anyone who has had the fortune of a family dinner with us knows that wit and humor are just as important as dessert.

if you are looking for a few more Thanksgiving recipes to perfect your feast, here are a few suggestions:
jeanne wotring's cranberry jello
buttercup squash risotto
apple and currant sweet potatoes
dutch oven turkey
pumpkin biscuits or pumpkin cardamom rolls
mulled apple cider
sweet potato cake or pumpkin chiffon pie

need table setting ideas?
check out the vintage mixer, or armelle blog for beautiful inspiration.

happy eating!

In honor of the holiday this week, I am sharing one of the recipes from our decadent Thanksgiving dinner class. These sweet potatoes are a little healthier than the usual version served at our family's feast. No marshmallows, butter or brown sugar. The natural sweetness in the applesauce takes care everything, the coconut oil (or butter if you so desire) adds a bit of luxury, and you won't be able to recall what used to top these sweet root vegetables because it was always meant to be cinnamon candied pecans and walnuts.

They may look a little different, but they're still what my grandmother always called them, 'practically dessert'.

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This past weekend, we were without internet connection, so I couldn't wish you well. It felt like Thanksgiving because I was up late prepping Thanksgiving dishes to teach at our seasonal foods class. It was a wonderful class, and the food was perfect for a stormy afternoon. It began with warm winds and dark grey clouds during which we ate some delicious Thanksgiving sides, then in the evening it ended with a dusting of light up the night sky snow.

On friday, the babe and I visited the bijou market, then the antique store next door to it, and are now (just about) finished with our christmas shopping. My sister came over saturday, tagging along to the class and then volunteering to guard the house + home while the babe slept and husband + I experienced the magic of Harry Potter 7, fantastical. Sunday was dark and cozy, and I spent a lot of time thinking about how blessed we are and very little to no time cooking. Now, it is monday; and I finally have my food assignments for Thanksgiving, which is in less than a handful of days. what? Even though I've been looking forward to it, I feel like it snuck up in the night. anyone else?

a few more things::

there is a new events page where I will share dates and info about classes that Melissa and I will be teaching as well as other local and real food events that might be happening nearby.

the week's end zupas post about persimmons and some lovely recipes using them.

and in case you haven't heard, thanksgiving is this week.

do you have your food assignment yet?

there mightn't be any turkey, but I am loving this visual rendition of a thanksgiving feast from hollister hovey.

only a week left, are you ready?

i love this movie.

we have been playing christmas music for the past week, and although i still have mixed feelings about it, it's warming up to me.

i love reading gratitude posts, and that people have months full of them.

i am grateful for grocery stores that give balloons to children.

i just realized that the url for my hello page is misspelled. curses.

i enjoy the sound of my oven when it's preheating.

Today, i am giving away a free registration for our Decadent Thanksgiving cooking class this saturday! If you would like to come, for free!, keep on reading on how to enter. more information about the class here; including the menu. If you'd rather not take the chance, register here.

to enter:

leave one comment on this post to enter, you have until friday morning around naptime (when I get on the computer for the first time of the day)

a few things:
- you have 2-ish days to enter. this giveaway closes friday, november 19th at naptime/whenever i close comments.
- the winners will be chosen at random and announced at the top bottom of this post.
- if you don't respond to me that same day/before the class, your prize goes to someone else; i know that's a short time frame so stay close to your e-mail!
- please leave a reliable e-mail for me to contact you so the previous bullet point doesn't happen.
- you get one extra entry for tweeting/facebooking/blogging. I can only keep track of so many, but also want you to spread the word! tell me in one separate comment that you did so.
- anonymous comments don't count.


congrats!! Jill is the winner! you should be getting an email now-ish.
remember, you can still register for the class here or show up at the door. hope to see you there!

happy weekend!
and thank goodness for 3G.

We love food from all around the world and we're always excited to try new things, as long as it's not still creeping and/or crawling. I love making curry, and hubby likes it too, although it's not his favorite. He doesn't squee for curry but he does squee for masala. Served over steaming rice beside hot tandoori garlic naan and he is in heaven, or rather a reincarnated state of mind.

I'm not sure how authentic our version is, I do know one main difference. This version is made with delicata squash and sweet potatoes, a seasonal and healthier change to the heavy marinated meats that usually fill this dish. With it's healthier changes, it is still as comforting as ever, a delicious meal on a blustery day.

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In addition to watching the weather over the past week (which we do a lot of) we have also been trying out new recipes including winter squash pot pie, pumpkin molasses cookies, homemade (coconut milk) yogurt, and the above pumpkin spice no bakes. They were each fantastic and under par in their own ways, but that's alright, it just means there is more food to be made!

and eaten.

In other news, Melissa and I are teaching another class this saturday, November 19, 2010 at Jacob's Cove farm in orem, utah. We will be teaching you how to use local and seasonal ingredients to make a decadent Thanksgiving dinner.

the menu:

Apple Custard Pie with Fresh Cranberries and Cinnamon
Winter Vegetable Salad with Yogurt
Fennel and Ground Mustard
Apple and Currant Sweet Potatoes with Candied Pecans
Cornbread Stuffing with Walnuts and Bing Cherries

and come hungry!

We will also be teaching a class December 11, 2010: Creating Delicious Holiday Meals. Mark your calendar!

how was your weekend? ours was wonderful, spent watching movies, helping (in the babe's case, hindering) neighbors with big piles of leaves, visiting friends, and watching the rain soak our beighborhood from the warmth of our front room, wrapped in quilts and blankets.

To start off the week I wanted to share this cookbook with you. I know I shared a handful with you last week, but this book is so beautiful. Plus, I love making jam. Not the kind with those small boxes of pectin; I've heard there are squeeze tube varieties now, but have yet to see if it's a valid rumor. Of course I have made jam with pectin before, but I prefer the type made with lush ripe fruit, natural pectins from the fruit themselves, a bit of sugar, gentle and constant heat, time, and a lot of love. The kind that gets just about everything sticky, and necessitates a long soak of every utensil for ideal cleanliness. The same kind my granny and great gran must have made and likely shared with neighbors and friends.

Neighbors and friends that just happened to be all family.

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I am looking forward to this weekend. Among the activities planned, and unplanned, is my little book group gathering. One of the books of choice (of three) for the month was this book by K. Douglas Bassett. Even if you overlook the religious context that it is written under, it has a powerful message about allotting your time to the things that are most important, the relationships and people that surround you. This book inspires me to seek out and dwell on the moments in life that are seemingly unimportant, the moments that are gone in an instant, and only recognized when you are paying close attention.

This weekend I will be paying attention, to the crooked smile and tenderness of my little one, the sarcasm and talents of my life love, and the beauty that is in thoughtful action. You can bet we will be crunching through the leaves a little more than usual, there are too many piles in this neighborhood that need to be organized and disassembled.

panna cotta and mulled cider granita at cafe zupas today.

wishing you attention to detail and beloved fleeting moments this weekend.

For many families, the turkey is the centerpiece at the Thanksgiving table. To me, separate plates of two different shades of meat, and cold turkey sandwiches the days after, are a bit nostalgic. We try to make good choices when it comes to our food, choosing foods that are real, whole, and grown the way nature intended them to grow. There is an ever-increasing number of people who feel similarly, which has been reflected in the amount of heritage and pastured poultry farms that are cropping up, even in Utah.

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The city library is a bi-weekly visit for us. It helps that it's literally down the street. Although as it becomes more frigid, the weeks between visits increase and I use the drive through drop off and underground parking more and more often. I borrow cookbooks all the time, using them to see if they are worth spending the money on. But I have a bad habit of taking the book to the main desk, after I've exceeded my renewal limits, to first check if there are any requests from others, then if not, to borrow it for another 3 - 6 weeks. If you are thinking of buying a cookbook, but want to take it for a test spin, look for it at your local library. Chances are they'll have it, and you might find that you actually hate the cookbook, or maybe you'll love it so much that you'll renew it so often and pay so many late fees on it that you'd have been better off buying it in the first place. Not that I am talking from experience...

These are only a handful of the cookbooks (one food related book) I have renewed more than once, spent weeks on a waiting list for, and admittedly even paid fines for. I hate paying library fines. I read these books like novels. They're worth the publisher's price. I would be surprised if you owned any of these and haven't given them a pet name. or two.

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this weekend was probably the most perfect weekend yet.  We now have a sea of mustard yellow leaves flooding our sidewalk like a castle mote out front, and mixed with today's cloudy skies and rainy streets it's incredibly beautiful. The babe and I spent the perfect amount of time romping through leaves, listening to the crunch beneath our soles. Too bad the mote won't do much to keep away winter much longer.

It has been a few weeks since art weekend, but checking out nicole's recap I saw an image of our class and remembered the brain cramps i got because of all the knowledge i learned. then i wonder if i have been capturing moments and images any better since... see me? i'm in the first bw image trying to remember how to be as graceful as nicole is at eight (?) months pregnant.

I was giving Sheena suggestions for places to eat in san fransisco and when I was telling her about golden gate bakery, and their don tot, I got a hankering. Then I found this post about how they're really as good as 'they' say, and I got homesick for custard. A few weeks ago I made puff pastry for my father so we could make don tot with the molds he got from his hong kong trip, but we never did finish them. I am craving one something fierce now.

how was your weekend?

Our town's farmer's market ended last saturday, the weather is consistently below 70 degrees, the trees are leafless in the canyons, I haven't acknowledged my "garden" for over a week, and they have begun to play christmas music on the radio. not kidding. I especially love the view form our front window. The trees that border its frame are rich with yellow and golden leaves, and I have heard that if you listen very closely you can hear each leaf as it falls. I have had spices and citrus on the stove all week and have smiled each time someone comments on the comforting aroma. Even if winter is rumored to be "on our doorstep", I am enjoying every minute of my favorite season.

As for our weekend, we have a house guest for the week. So good times and a lot of good food is to be had. Speaking of, what do eighteen sixteen year old boys like to do? that is, besides eating double thier weight at every meal. I'm at a loss...

This weekend, fill your home and senses with the aroma of autumn; apples, citrus and spice. today's zupas posts I am sharing a recipe for mulling spices and how to make mulled apple cider.

wishing you a happy and cozy weekend.

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I feel as though the end of the year is a vortex of shrinking time. The days become shorter as we quite literally lose our minutes. I don't think I've ever been excited about losing that hour when daylight savings ends. There are so many things I could have done in that time, even if I can't think of anything at the moment.

It doesn't help that autumn in utah seems to last for a week, until presumptuous winter demands all the attention. Around our home things have been a bit unsettled with guests, gatherings, and a clingy toddler. I have been unfaithful in staying up to date with the challenges of the kitchen cure, but I am slowly and surely making progress. I finished the first challenge: cleaning out my refrigerator/freezer and pantry - love it! I was even opening the freezer to admire the order. Pictures to come! someday.. Even though I'm a bit behind, I will finish before Thanksgiving. Maybe it will become a yearly to do before the holidays. There is something inspiring about a clean and orderly kitchen.

How has your week been? crazy fast too? can you believe it's november?

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