Halvah Cookies

Halvah (Tahini) Cookies

Hello everyone! I’ve got a very tasty treat for you today that happens to be a spin on a beloved childhood treat of mine!

Before that, I wanted to quickly mention my new newsletter, Paleo Bytes. I recently sent out the first newsletter and got a great response! I am sending out a monthly-ish newsletter (you will not get emails every time I post – that’s boring) that features fresh content and awesome times. You can sign up on the right sidebar!

You may not recognize the word “halvah”, but don’t let that turn you away. These cookies are incredibly simple to make – only 4 ingredients! If you like tahini (sesame seed paste), you’ll definitely enjoy these slightly sweet cookies.

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Homemade Apple Cider

Homemade Apple Cider

I’m a big fan of apple cider.

Growing up, the minute the temperatures outside dipped below freezing (which, in my neck of the woods, is sometimes October), my mom would deliberately set a big stockpot on the stove, fill it with jug after jug of apple cider, add further flavor with spices, and turn the burner on low, just enough so the cider was almost hot, so we kids could come inside from playing in the snow and enjoy a warming cup of cider as our frigid skin melted. The pot would stay on the stove, continually being refilled, until it was getting too warm for that sort of thing – usually when our subzero winter temps started creeping up to the 20s in February or March.

Once the kids were all moved out, the tradition got shortened, with a duration of while we were home for the holidays. Still, colder temperatures tend to awaken a craving for apple cider. Now that I live on my own and I’ve adopted a real food lifestyle, I wanted a different alternative to the apple cider sold in a jug (made from juice concentrate and additives). With a little bit of research and time in the kitchen, I made an apple cider that definitely satisfies this year’s cravings!

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Chia Energy Bars

Spiced Chocolate Chia Energy Bars

Sometimes I really just want chocolate. I mean, who doesn’t? People that don’t like chocolate, I guess. But those people are kind of weird and you should be a little suspicious of them.

The problem with chocolate, though, is that on its own it’s not super great for you or very filling. I’m not really one of those “oh, I’ll only have one bite of this dark chocolate bar and I’m good” kind of people. I’m not really a “I can’t help myself and I’m going to stuff my face with chocolate” person, either. Perhaps I just like experimenting too much, so I just throw cacao powder at things hoping it tastes good. Well, whatever the reason, I came up with these Spiced Chocolate Chia Energy Bars, and they were chocolatey and delicious enough to share with all of you!

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Curried Delicata Squash

Curried Delicata Squash

First off, Happy New Year’s Eve! Hopefully 2015 is filled with awesome things for you!

I discovered two spectacular components of this Curried Delicata Squash only a few short months ago — curry powder and delicata squash. Weird, right?

I didn’t eat my first curry until I was 24 years old (in 2014), and I can easily say that I was missing out on something wonderful my entire life. I grew up loving squash, but my mom always bought acorn or buttercup squash for us to share, and smaller squash varieties like delicata or sweet dumpling were “gourds” that were bought for decoration. I honestly shudder to think of all the delicious and versatile squash that’s bought to rot each year because people think it looks pretty but don’t know how to prepare it!

Hopefully, this recipe will get someone out there to try eating delicata squash instead of discarding it as a kitchen decoration.

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Browned Butter Sage Sweet Potatoes and Apples

Browned Butter Sage Sweet Potatoes and Apples

In the winter, warm side dishes like these Sage Sweet Potatoes and Apples are total favorites of mine. I mean, is there anything about that recipe name that doesn’t scream comfort food?

Winter can be a struggle for me. Let’s just say that Seasonal Affective Disorder is definitely a thing, and it affects a lot of people whether they realize it or not. I certainly recognize it this winter. I feel incredibly lazy, and most of the time I just want to lie around. It’s just not a fun time.

To make it worse, I live in North Dakota.

That may not immediately inspire empathy, but hear me out. Normally this time of year, we’re dealing with -20 degree weather. Every. Single. Day.

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