Thursday, February 13, 2014

Because we're happy!

Some people go to work and sit in a cubicle. Others set out to the job site and work day in and out on construction, or engineering. Me? I work in a bakery, and while that may not sound like anything special to a lot of people, it's everything to me. I have 2 best friends as co-workers (and my boss), a fantastic FOH crew, and I make sweet treats all day.
As all my fellow NY-ers know, we have had one brutal winter! By the way, thanks for the forecast yesterday guys... 3-8 inches. Let's try 12-15! Woohoo! I've been watching the regulars at the bake shop come in, grumble, and gripe about the weather. They shuffle out to their cars and scrape the ice that locks them out of the comfort of their heated seat warmers, only to skid on the sludge in the parking spaces before finally getting on their ways. They smile briefly while holding their perfect coffee and soft pastries, or while chit chatting with myself or coworkers, but if there's anything I've learned while working in the restaurant hospitality business, it's that if your customers aren't happy. You CERTAINLY are not either. So...what is a bake shop filled with charismatic people to do during the off time of snowy days? Try and make their customers, and the world, be happy! So here, I present you with the first official music video of Blondie's Bake Shop! Remember, smile!

Thursday, January 23, 2014

We can resolve these resolution problems.

It's January! Ah yes.  A new start, a new year, and another reason to jump back into that gym or high intensity workout routine that leaves your muscles twitching and your hands filled with tootsie rolls, trying to get that blood sugar back up.  I can't keep resolutions. I try, I really do, but by the time I've juiced the last bunch of kale I'm pretty much over the whole ordeal.
Instead, I've adapted a new way of eating that has taken months and months to hold on to. Less sweets (HA, well I try my best with that one...), no red meat, tons of fresh fruits and veggies, and NO soda. Is it a huge ground breaking ideology? Nope! Which is why I think it would work for absolutely everyone. You can substitute your own rules, maybe you don't want any sugar at all but absolutely love your steak and pork loin. Hey, that's cool! Just keep it healthy my friends.
I've also learned that when you start your day healthy, you're much more likely to keep it that way. So on that note:

I grew up with oatmeal and cream of wheat. Every. Single. Weekend.
 It was great and warm and I really appreciate that my parents allowed me to grow up in a household of minimal takeout and a plentiful amount of healthy meals, but now I'm at the stove, and we're about to switch things up.
Quinoa is new on the health food scene, new in popularity, and has taken center stage with big brand veggie burgers and salad enthusiasts everywhere. Why? It's gluten free, packed with protein, dietary fiber, magnesium, iron, and dreams.
Why then are we stopping at salads and burgers? Let's get this "superfood" into the most important meal of the day! I'm talking about hot quinoa breakfast cereal, and it's awesome.
This cereal will help you relax the cravings that may attack you throughout your day, and satisfy the sweet breakfast desire that so many of us have. We can't all be bacon and egg people! Gosh.
On with it then.

Quinoa! The new breakfast of champions.
You'll need for 2 servings

2 cups of vanilla almond milk
1 cup of rinsed quinoa
2 tbs of brown sugar
1 tbs of real maple syrup
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1/2 tsp vanilla
Fresh berries for serving. I used raspberries.

In a medium saucepan, heat the almond milk to a simmer. Stir in the quinoa, sugar, maple syrup, cinnamon, and nutmeg. I say stir, because I used a whisk the first time around and it was a nightmare. I test so you don't have to deal with the issues. You're welcome.
Bring this to a boil and then down to a simmer, cover for 15 minutes. You'll notice at this point that most of the milk has been absorbed, and that's exactly what you want to see. Stir in the vanilla and cook, stirring occasionally for another 10 minutes. Your breakfast is ready! Woohoo! Serve with extra almond milk splashed on top and fresh berries.

Resolutions are doable! I think I can, I think I can...