Tuesday, January 3, 2012

The Blue Table has moved!

Please join me over at my new domain!

Thank you to everyone for your support! I hope you continue to accompany me on my gluten-free journey!

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Oh My Darlin'

It's a new year, and Minnesnowta is finally being true to itself. Yikes.

I'm not going to lie, I got pretty pumped when I packed several pairs of shorts into my suitcase for my upcoming trip. 

Then I remembered that my legs haven't seen the light of day in months.

Womp womp.

I decided to brighten up this blustery day by trying a new loaf recipe! 

Vanilla Clementine Loaf
makes one loaf
adapted from this recipe

10 clementines
3/4 cup heavy cream
2 tablespoons pure vanilla extract
1/2 cup sorghum flour
1/2 cup tapioca starch
1/2 cup brown rice flour
1/4 cup millet flour
1/4 cup white rice flour
1 teaspoon xanthan gum
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup sugar
1 stick unsalted butter
2 eggs

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Whisk together flours, starch, soda, powder, xanthan gum, salt, and sugar. 

Zest four of the clementines. Juice eight of them. Cut and separate the wedges of the remaining two.

In a separate bowl, combine butter, heavy cream, eggs, vanilla, 1/4 cup clementine juice, and zest. 

Fold the wet ingredients into the dry using a rubber spatula. Fold in clementine segments. 

Pour into a greased loaf pan. Bake for 55-65 minutes. 

I may have sang the song while I mixed up the batter...

I hope everyone had a safe and happy new year!

Mine was a very eye-opening experience and I look forward to what 2012 will bring.

Friday, December 30, 2011

Spinach and Goat Cheese Omelette Wrap

I actually mustered up enough energy today to make myself a real breakfast.

And boy did I need it.

I'm not sure what the traditions are in your family, but one of my mom's traditional holiday dishes is a casserole that has earned the name "heart attack in a dish."

After a serving a two of that, it's nice to follow it up with a lighter meal that provides energy and doesn't require you to wear pants with an elastic waistband.

Spinach and Goat Cheese Omelette Wrap

My friend Lilly suggested that I try using my new iPhone for taking pictures, as opposed to the point and shoot I've been using.

I'd say it was a good suggestion.

This is my kind of breakfast; easy but delicious. I cracked two eggs into a little glass bowl, added about a tablespoon or two of skim milk, and whisked it up with a fork. Then, I added a half tablespoon of oil to a medium-sized pan over medium heat. Pour in the eggs and season with salt and pepper. Allow the eggs to cook for a minute or two, and then flip the omelette if your feeling bold. Sprinkle spinach and goat cheese over the omelette, allow to cook for another minute, then fold the omelette into a little wrap. 


At the moment I'm feeling a little overwhelmed with some much anticipated updates. But, if I manage to get a grasp on things, check in next week for news!

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Slow Cooker Chicken Curry

Welp, looks like all my sweaters are going to smell like I live in an Indian spice market.


Slow Cooker Chicken Curry
Original recipe
Serves two

1 lb boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into bite size pieces
2 tomatoes, puréed
1 medium onion, diced
1 thumb-sized chunk of fresh ginger
3 garlic cloves
8 oz plain, nonfat yogurt

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1 tablespoon curry powder
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
1/2 teaspoon coriander
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon cardamom
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon chili powder

chopped parsley or cilantro for garnish (optional)

1 cup cooked basmati rice

Combine all ingredients (minus rice) and throw them in a slow cooker! 3-4 hours on low!


By far the best results I've had with chicken. 

This Christmas gift is going to keep on giving!

Tuesday, December 27, 2011


To me, one of the most beautiful images in the world is the way honey illuminates the crisp white of an apple. If only my dinky little point and shoot could capture this.

Maybe it's better when kept to my own eyes.

I feel like this photo is a good representation my day: light, sweet, whimsical, with a little bit of spice.

If the next week floats on like today, it would be fine by me. 

Without the obligation of work, I drifted around Grand Avenue for a majority of the late morning and early afternoon. With a chai in one hand and my iPod in the other, I embraced the unseasonably warm weather and moseyed around Saint Paul as if I was in a daydream. Some days the convenience of having  a car is difficult to pass up. But, I wanted today to be different. A trip to the bank almost becomes a privilege when I can take my time, listen to good winter music, window shop, stop and pet someone's dog. 

With the addition of seeing the American version of The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo for under $7, Saint Paul really had it going on today. 

And I would say that Rooney Mara is my new girl crush. Who needs Daniel Craig. 

Tomorrow I'll have to take a break from daydreaming and take my position behind the counter of the bakery once again. But, for now I'm going to snuggle up under the covers, still smiling from the very entertaining Skype session that Lilly and I just shared.

Good night, blog world. 

(I apologize for lacking a recipe in this post - I'll brainstorm something to try in my new slow cooker for tomorrow!)

Monday, December 26, 2011

Boxing Day Banana Bread

I feel like I've seen many Christmas decorations in my lifetime that are inscribed with the word "peace."

Are everyone else's holidays peaceful? Am I doing something wrong?

Yeah, didn't think so.

Having a peaceful holiday when working in customer service and housing two teenage brothers and a puppy in your apartment doesn't seem realistic. However, it was a fantastic Christmas with my colorful family, and there was no shortage of love and generosity.

After a refreshingly slow morning shift, I came back to my empty apartment. Casper is staying in Omaha for now since I'll be leaving for Mexico next week. I miss his endearingly obnoxious presence, but the silence was a good opportunity for some reflection. It truly is hard to believe how much can change in a year.

While curled up in the fetal position on top of my quilt (ideal thinking position), I thought about happiness.

After ringing up dozens of overpriced cookies over the past couple weeks, I would often say "Happy holidays!" when dropping change into the palms of frenzied customers.

What makes a holiday happy?

Might need to pull myself back from that one. I'm a little too sleepy to dive into definitions of happiness. But, I will say this: During the holidays, I'm happy when my brothers get along and say "thank you" to my parents after opening presents. I'm happy when I cry from laughing during a game of Apples to Apples because the Helen Keller card always wins the round, guaranteed. I'm happy to serve my family a meal that I'm proud of and to have enough leftover mashed potatoes to last me until the new year. I'm happy to spend twice as much time wrapping presents because all I have is glue and not enough cash for scotch tape. I appreciate friends and family who reach out during Christmas, even if I haven't seen them all year.

I'm happy for all of the Christmases to come, and for who and what they will bring.

Jeez, I am cheeseballin' it up today.

(Healthier) Gluten-Free Banana Bread
adapted from Joy the Baker
makes one loaf

Gotta love having a family that leaves behind ripe bananas.

If you haven't noticed, I have a newfound love for banana bread. I love quick breads in general, and eating banana bread for breakfast puts a little pep in my step when I'm walking to work at 5 AM. However, I decided if I'm going to keep devouring it like I do, I should omit the chocolate chips, etc.

But, I don't feel like I'm sacrificing anything with this!

1/2 cup sorghum flour
1/2 cup tapioca starch
1/4 cup millet flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon xanthan gum
1 cup old fashioned oats
1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
3 large bananas, mashed
2 eggs, beaten
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
3 teaspoons grapeseed oil (or any other oil)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

1/2 cup chopped walnuts (optional)

Whisk together flours, starch, soda, powder, salt, cinnamon, xanthan gum, oats, and brown sugar. Set aside.

Combine bananas, eggs, vanilla, and oil until smooth.

Fold wet ingredients into dry using a rubber spatula. Mix until ingredients just come together and there aren't any flour chunks hiding in the batter.

Pour into a prepared loaf pan. Bake for 45-50 minutes, until top is firm.

In other news...

Things are about to get serious up in here.

Sunday, December 25, 2011


Well, here we are.

Louie and I are currently sharing some breakfast; I'm having a banana and he's gnawing on a bone.

Breakfast of champions.

After a long and early day at the bakery yesterday, I was hoping that I'd get to sleep in a bit this morning...

That wasn't going to fly with this one.

Despite an exhausting shift, Christmas Eve was pretty fantastic! My family arrived around four in the afternoon. Whenever they're here it seems as if my apartment shrinks in size. My brothers, who have now surpassed me in height, flop around in a fashion that makes it sounds like there are ten additional people in the room.

Dad's making bad jokes and attempting to get me to watch the trailer for The Hobbit, Mom is pointing out my missteps in cleaning the apartment, and the boys are being true 8th graders by rolling their eyes at every other word my parents say.

The gangs all here!

Rosemary Chicken with Baked Apples
adapted from Elana's Pantry
Serves 4-5

Hey, I roasted a chicken!

It was pretty good, too.

This was really simple. All I did was gave the chicken a little massage with rosemary butter, placed it over four sprigs of fresh rosemary in the pan, drizzle balsamic vinegar and grapeseed oil over it, then stuff cored and sliced apples around the edges. Bake at 350 for an hour and a half to an hour and forty-five minutes. 

The menu also included garlic mashed potatoes, oven roasted carrots, and some rolls from the bakery (for the non-gluten-free side of the family).

This certainly wasn't traditional by any means, but I'm so happy that my family is up here and I'd say that last night was a success!