Vegan Thai Chili Pizza

Hello all! Sorry it’s been so long since I posted- life ya know?

Anywho! I’ve gotten so many requests for this pizza, so I thought I’d spill my super easy secret recipe! This pizza is bursting with flavor and can be adapted in anyway you wish-that’s the beauty of pizza, and how I came up with this amazing recipe! It’s a snap to whip up and is a go to in my healthy recipe repertoire!

Ingredients:

  • Pizza crust
  • Thai chili sauce (I make my own, but Kikkomans makes a really good Thai chili sauce if you’re in a pinch)
  • Zucchini
  • Greens (spinach, baby greens, kale-whatever you please)
  • Mushrooms (baby bellas work well)
  • Avocados
  • Blueberries-HEAR ME OUT. Much like penicillin, these little gems were discovered by accident and were a product of me being out of pineapple one of the first times I made this pizza. Never the less! These were the most wonderful discovery, and I use them intentionally now!
  • Chili Flakes
  • Hemp Seeds and/or Chia Seeds

First things first!

Preheat your oven to 425°

Prep your ingredients.

Smother your crust with your thai chili sauce.

Use a mandolin or knife to slice your zucchini into thin slices and place on pizza.

Add greens.

Then mushrooms and avocado.

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Bake for 8 minutes and take this piping hot goodness out to enjoy!

Notice how the blueberries get all plump and juicy? Be prepared to be amazed!

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Ohhh!!!

Ahhh!!!

This pairs perfectly with a crisp wine like a Riesling or a Rosé. Feel free to improvise, often this pizza changes based on what I have in my crisper. If you aren’t feelin the blueberries, sliced pineapple or chopped dates make a great addition to the spiciness of the sauce.

I’ve found that rollin with the punches is the key to life-and good pizza.

Hope you all enjoy and have a happy Sunday!

Scorched Earth

Monday Musings:

Oftentimes it seems like you have to go through something to emerge a better person. There are so many “walk through the fire” analogies in literature and it is most likely because this holds true. What remains of our disaster is often the fuel needed to germinate our new way of looking at things.

It’s almost like we are so stubborn that we have to endure hard times to learn a lesson fully & appreciate our very existence in this world-its not ideal, but there you have it. The best people often have a murky past and it is because they have overcome so much that they became the person we know and admire.

Spent this Sunday roaming around the lake and thinking about all the times in my life I’ve gone through a traumatic change that made me the person I am today. Sure, those weren’t fun times, but when I think about the way they had impacted my personal growth and development as a person, I realize I would trade them for anything. Much like a Phoenix, we have to sometimes lose everything and rise from the ashes of our inferno before we can spread our wings.

It’s always easy to be overwhelmed in the situation and think you’ll never get out of it, but I always find that if I look back on my previous triumphs over hardships, I feel much more calm and prepared to handle anything that is thrown at me.

Keep that in mind for your current/future struggles. You are amazing. You are resilient. You have risen from the flames before, and you will do it again.

Lake Lover

I spent the morning at the doctors.

It was one of those super frustrating things where you wait for over an hour to finally see the doctor and they have a 5 minute discussion with you, and then send you on your way with more questions than when you came in.

I understand that doctors have to be super cautious, and warn you of every little thing that could go wrong, but sometimes their enigmatic demeanor  and cryptic diagnoses can leave me with more stress than if I had skipped the doctor in the first place.

That’s neither here nor there, my opinion of the medical model notwithstanding, I needed an escape. And instead of drowning my frustration in empty calories, I decided to take a drive around the lake and take a walk by the water.

I don’t know what it is about large bodies of water, but they’re just so soothing. Maybe it has to do with our spending 9 months in the comforting waters sloshing about in our mother’s womb, or the fact that I’m part mermaid, but I have always found solace in being near water.

So I did just that. I walked around the lake for a bit, taking in the sunshine and counting my blessings. And though life can sometimes throw you curveballs, it’s nice to take stock in what you already have in your life and put things into perspective.

Here’s to counting blessings and silver linings.

Happy Wednesday all.

It’s the little things. 

This weekend was glorious.

It marked the end of the stagnancy of winter and brought with it sunshine, and much needed warm weather.

I celebrated by not wearing 15 layers.

I also spent a good amount of time outside doing various things and driving around the lake with my windows down blaring music. It was a pretty simple weekend but it was absolutely perfect.


Lake Driving

Exploring new places with old friends.

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Westport Café & Bar

Hope you all have a wonderful week! Get out and enjoy the little things that come with the imminent arrival of spring!

Spotlight Feature: My Mom

Moms are kind of magical.

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They have this uncanny ability to be there for you at the most crucial times, offer the best advice (whether or not you choose to listen to it, is up to you), and they have this infuriating knack for always being right.

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My mom is all of these things and so much more. She is my champion, my number one fan and always supports me no matter what I endeavor to do. She brings so much joy into my life and lights up the world within which she operates. She is both my friend and my confidant, she keeps all my secrets and cheers me on. She has been here for me through many ups and downs and her strength never falters. She is a grand optimist and taught me to always look for the silver lining (sunshine) in the world.

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She has also known hardships. She has spent much of her adult life dealing with severe health issues and last year, had the added complication of battling TWO separate cancers on top of everything else. The hand she was dealt has not been easy. It’s hard to see someone you love so dearly, someone so completely selfless, deal with debilitating pain every minute of every day. Yet she soldiers on. Her smile never wavers, her head stays held high, she walks with confidence, and her chipper attitude is contagious- even on her worst days.

I hope one day to have even half of the optimism and joy for life she has.

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(Birthday lunch on The Plaza)

This past week we had the immense pleasure of bringing in her birthday with her. This was a milestone birthday, and a day we didn’t know if we would see this time last year when she was receiving her cancer diagnosis.

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(mushroom lasagna with truffle oil at my new favorite restaurant Gram & Dun)

This year has been full of ups and downs and has shown me just how precious time with your loved ones-especially your mom- actually is.

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(there was a suprise mini-snow storm, it didn’t photograph well, but we enjoyed it immensely! it seems like it always snows on her bday-just more of her “momma magic” I guess…she then proceeded to have an impromptu photo shoot with me after lunch-always the encourager that one)

Yesterday she had her one year scans to detect if the cancer she so recently beat is still eradicated from her body; it was a day of fear, but also a day to remind us of her strength and eternal optimism. So I encourage you today to take stock of the blessings you currently have. Look at the loved ones in your life who are your support system. Appreciate every second you have with them as life can be hard and cruel sometimes. Remember to look for the sunshine and know the value of the things that truly matter in life. Keep the sunshine in your eyes.

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Update: as if she could be anymore wonderful, I got home tonight to find this waiting for me from, you guessed it…



My mom! 

Seriously love this lady more than words could ever convey.

Weekend Details

Weekend Roundup on a Tuesday because my weekends are always a little too packed.

Saturday

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Red lips and an amethyst necklace.

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It snowed all day, so after work I went to Caribou and sat by the fire to read and watch the snow fall.

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Honey Hazelnut Latte and a French Novel.

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After work I had a friend’s bridal shower to attend and the set up was lovely!

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The theme was wine tasting, so as you can imagine it was a hit.

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Various cheeses and such.

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My plate (dinner) consisting of bread and cheese.

Sunday

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Mocha Latte at my new favorite local coffee shop Post Coffee.

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Perfect Pancake with peanut butter, chia seeds and blueberries.

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Perfect sunset after a snow storm.

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Have a lovely week all!

Also Happy Birthday to my awesome brother!

Your Best Self

Today I want to talk about being the best possible version of yourself.

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In this technologically driven society we live in, it’s easy to be over exposed to those with so called “perfect lives”. We see the constant updates on social media, hear about the exciting things others are up to, and in turn, we naturally compare our own lives to theirs. Obviously we are going to fall short when we know the raw details (including the ups and downs) of our own lives and are only exposed to the edited and abbreviated version of others. When we make any comparison of our own lives to others, whether it be an upward or downward comparison, we are cheating ourselves and those we look at with judgmental eyes by only looking at what is presented to us instead of the whole story.

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 *I think there’s an important distinction to be made between comparing yourself with others and trying to be more like them (which is often depressing as you are denying your true self), and holding someone in high esteem as a role model of sorts-the trick is to be aware of how you are viewing the person. Are you trying to mimic them and live like they do? Are you bitter or envious of them? Or are you merely inspired by them and seek to better your life by taking cues from them?

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Once you become aware of this tendency you realize how destructive it can be-I was having this conversation with a good friend the other day, (lets call her J) and she pointed out that you just gotta live YOUR life. It sounds so simple, but I’ve used it as my mantra for the past week and it has made the biggest difference.

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Every time I felt the slightest twinge of envy or jealousy creep up, I would repeat that mantra back and I instantly became intent on bettering myself as opposed to focusing on what I didn’t have.

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Which brings me to being the best possible version of yourself.

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I think its easy to become complacent in our daily lives-we get busy, we have routines, we make unhealthy easy choices, instead of difficult ones that mean a better future for us and our loved ones. We lose sight of childhood dreams and sometimes put ourselves second to the point of losing our identity. We get so caught up in the nuisances of life, that we lose sight of the big picture.

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Being your best self, to me, means constantly challenging yourself, never stop learning, always look for the bright side of things (the sunshine), never taking yourself too seriously, and always maintain the mindset that you can never be done with the project that is you.

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Which is why I am making this the year that I scare myself silly. I’m going to backpack Europe. I’m going to strike up conversations with strangers. I’m going to work on nurturing relationships I currently have and challenge my loved ones to be their best self. I’m going to explore places in my home city that I’ve always wanted to, but have been too afraid to go alone. I’m going to turn off my phone and get lost somewhere. I’m going to try and teach myself French in 3 months. I’m going to go to live shows and poetry readings, and get back to the theatre. I’m going to a ballet class tonight because I used to dance as girl and miss it so! (pics to follow, as I’m sure they’ll be hilarious)

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The point is this-never stop trying. Always challenge yourself. Look at your life with fresh eyes and realize that we only get one shot to be great.

 Live YOUR life- and make it your best one.

Update: went to that ballet class and had SUCH an amazing time!!! Chase your dreams people!

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