Eating Out: The Post Brewing Company

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Last week, Steve and I went out on a mid week date night.  He took me to The Post Brewing Company in Lafayette and it was awesome!  We’ve been trying to explore more restaurants closer to our house, instead of driving all the way into Boulder or Denver.  The Post will definitely become part of our regular rotation.  The deal was sealed for me when I ordered the Moscow Mule picture above and it came in a copper cup.  If you can correctly serve your Moscow Mule in the right vessel, then I’m in.  That means you take your cocktails seriously!  Steve ordered Lemon Mint Shandy, which he had the first time he came here with a friend and liked it so much, he ordered it again.  I had a couple of sips and it was cool and refreshing, perfect for a hot day.  The Post brews their own beer, which I unfortunately cannot speak to how good it is.  (I’ll have to make Steve go back and be a guinea pig.)

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We started with deviled eggs.  These are not your grandma’s deviled eggs with mayo and paprika sprinkled on top.  Nope, these are the deviled eggs that dreams are made of.  There are crispy pork cheeks as a garnish on the eggs, zippy mustard in the filling and it’s served with a horse radish dipping sauce.  A most excellent choice!

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The super great thing about The Post is that most of their menu is gluten free!  I can’t remember the last time I ordered something fried at a restaurant, but here, the crispy chicken basket is gluten free.  Their fried chicken and all their sauces on their dishes are gluten free as well.  This makes me incredibly happy.  I get mighty tired of ordering a salad every time I go out to eat.  I could not stop eating this Crispy Chicken Pieces basket.  It had fried livers, oysters and chicharrones.  The apricot/mustard sauce was a nice accompaniment to the chicken; the acid from the mustard in the sauce cut nicely through the fat of the chicken.

My personal favorite pieces were the pieces of liver.  I ate almost the whole basket, and then spent the night in a fried food coma.  Those pieces were simply perfect-light, airy and crisp.  I also really enjoyed the fried pieces of vegetables that were in there, cauliflower and bell pepper.

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Steve had the fried chicken biscuit, which looked delightful.  We also ordered two sides.  Steve ordered the squash (local squash from Isabelle Farm!) with beer tomato jam and I had roasted beets with kale pesto.  Our server told us that the restaurant tries use as much local produce and products as they can.  We are lucky to live in an area that has many local vendors, so it is nice to see The Post taking advantage of that.

We will definitely be back to The Post!  Their menu changes seasonally, so I’m excited to back and see what new dishes they’ve come up with.  Go check it out!

The Post Brewing Company

105 West Emma St., Lafayette, CO

A Garden on the Prairie

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I have always wanted a garden every since I was little.  I planted carrots right into the rocky, sandy soil where I grew up and was delighted when I found spindly, bright carrots growing underneath green feathery fonds.  I think I also tried to grow radishes, but I don’t remember those being as successful.

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Now that I’m an adult (When did that happen…?) and have my own house with a big back yard, I can grow my own garden!  I have set out on this adventure with no real knowledge and I have learned a lot in the process.  All I’ve learned has been from experience and from the single gardening book I bought.  And it’s been a lot of fun.

Here’s a list of things we’ve grown this year so far:

romaine lettuce I bought six romaine plants and every single one died.  I think the hot prairie sun was too much for them.  They like the cooler weather.

spinach

lacinto and curly kale

broccoli

strawberries Some animal, a rabbit, bird or whatever is out here keeps eating our berries. I didn’t get to taste a single one!

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And this is what’s in progress right now:

squash

pumpkin

egg plant

tomatoes

green bell pepper

cucumber

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Next up will be Autumn vegetables, like beets, garlic, and probably more squash.  It has to cool down a little bit for those though.

It is amazing to me that a little 4×4 raised bed has produced so much life!  When one season’s crop has finished, we pull it up and plant another one.  I thought I was going to have to buy another bed to accommodate all of our plants, but this wee one has been serving us well.  Next year, I will buy another bed and put it under the tree in our yard.  This bed will get more shade and I will plant the more fragile plants there.  But, for now, I’m pretty pleased with my first attempts at gardening.  My younger self would be proud of me.

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Broccoli regrows after you cut out the main floret! Who knew?

This has been my newest interest and occupying my time in my new-ish house.  That and my new dog!

 

I have not updated this blog since September.  We went through a very traumatic time during our wedding and it took us a while to recover from it.  If any one at all remember the last time I posted, I mentioned that I started eating a gluten free diet to help with my arthritis.  I felt pretty lost with cooking for a while.  All of this is to say that I didn’t blog for a long time and now I feel like I’m ready again.  I hope to continue to update this.  Writing about food makes me happy.  Cheers!

Finding My Way

Hello.

It’s been a minute since I posted here.  I have been feeling uninspired in my kitchen and exhausted when I get home at night.  I’ve been eating a lot of over easy eggs and toast for dinner.  No complaints here-eggs are one of my favorite foods-but it lacks creativity.  It’s been hard for me to feel creative in my kitchen recently because I decided to make my diet gluten free.  At first, I thought it was something that I would just try out and see how I felt, but after a month of not eating it, it was pretty obvious that I should stop eating it all together.

Gluten-free

I have a sickness that greatly benefits from me not eating gluten.  The symptoms associated with my sickness reduced in their severity and I started to feel the best I had felt in a long time.  I’ve been struggling for the last two months on how dine in social situations, without being that person with the food allergy.  I’ve struggled in my own kitchen, trying to recreate foods that I love but without gluten.  It’s been hard and eye opening.

This feeling of uncertainty in a kitchen is one that I am not used to.  A kitchen is one of the places I feel most comfortable in and the calmest.  A kitchen without gluten scares me and also makes me a little sad.  Most of my fondest food memories are associated with foods that contain gluten.  Cream cheese biscuits for Thanksgiving.  Coffee Cake on Christmas morning.  My mom’s perfect buttermilk scones.  Making cornbread for my dad.  Oatmeal pancakes on Sunday mornings.

I suppose this is an opportunity to rise to the gluten free challenge.  Could I make gluten free cream cheese biscuits?  Biscuits that even other family members would eat?  Almost certainly.  Could I sneak gluten free flour into Christmas Coffee Cake and no one be the wiser?  Probably.  This is also an opportunity for me and my future husband to start some traditions of our own.  As we start our lives together, we could make some new traditions that I will soon have fond memories of.

So, things might look a little different around here.  Don’t expect to see to much wheat floating around.  I’ll probably still bake things with wheat flour for others, but for myself, I will be venturing into the land of gluten free flours.  I’d like to start with pumpkin muffins.  It’s creepy pretty slowing into Autumn here (90 degrees is July weather, not September.  Get it together, Colorado!) and I’ve got spicy pumpkin muffins on the brain.  Anybody have a good recipe for gluten free pumpkin muffins?

Apricot & Coconut Granola

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Granola is one of those foods that I pass in the grocery store and pick up like I’m going to buy it, and then set it back down.  I always talk myself out of it because I know I can make it at home.  The problem is that I never actually get around to making the granola.  Making granola isn’t not complicated and the ingredients are customizable.  Get after it!  For maximum crunchiness and zero burned spots, stirring this every so often in the oven is key.  Chewy and tangy apricots meet sweet coconut and crisp almond slivers.  They’re held together by a mixture of brown rice syrup, honey, olive oil and warm spices.

More nutritious, easy and a dang good breakfast, my granola beats the pants off it’s store bought cousin.

Apricot & Coconut Granola

Ingredients

3 cups rolled oats

1 cup sliver almonds

¼ cup whole flax seeds

3/4 cup dried apricots, sliced

3 tablespoon olive oil

4 tablespoons brown rice syrup

2 tablespoons honey

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

¼ teaspoon nutmeg

½ teaspoon ground ginger

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Pre heat the oven to 400°F.

Line a 9×13 pan wil foil.  Add oats, almond and flax seeds to pan.

In a small sauce pan, combine the oil, brown rice syrup, honey and spices.  Place over low heat for 5 minutes, until the mixture becomes a syrupy consistency.  Pour the warm mixture over the oats in the pan.  Mix together with a large spoon until all ingredients are uniformly coated and sticky.

Place pan in oven and stir mixture every 10 minutes to ensure even crunchiness.  The granola should take 20-30 minutes.  Remove from the oven and stir in sliced apricots.  Allow granola to cool completely before storing in a container.

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The Journey to Five Miles

August 2010

August 2012

October 2012

October 2012

November 2012

November 2012

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December 2012.  The first mile back.

December 2012. The first mile back.

A little further.

A little further.

March 2103.  First 5k.

March 2103. First 5k.

 May 2013.  Memorial Day 5k.

May 2013. Memorial Day 5k.

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June 2013

Five.

Five.

10 months and six days (last Sunday) after a freak accident with glass and a partial ruptured left Achille’s tendon, I ran 5 miles.  I was so happy while I was running I waved at every person I passed.

I’ve missed you, running.  Welcome back to my life.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Solo Oat Pancake

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I think I’m not alone when a week day rolls around and pancakes sound great for breakfast.  I think I’m also not alone in my time being precious in the morning.  Who has time to whip up a batch of pancakes during the week?  Between getting ready for work, packing my lunch, trying not to trip over the cat as I feed him, I’m pretty happy if I get some peanut butter and jelly toast for breakfast.

Joy’s got the solution for that midweek pancake craving though, with her Single Lady Pancake.  I mix up the dry ingredients the night before and then in the morning, all I do is add the wet ingredients.  A quick cook in a pan and I’m eating a pancake for a weekday breakfast.  For health reasons, I’ve been trying to limit gluten as much as possible in my diet, so I modified the “Single Lady Pancake” to be gluten free.  It’s worth noting that Bob’s  Redmill All Purpose Gluten Free Baking Flour is amazing.  Almost every time I’ve used it, I’ve had great results with the final product.  It has almost the same consistency as a glutenous product and it tastes good too.

Solo Oat Pancake

Ingredients:

1/3 cup Bob’s Redmill All Purpose Gluten Free Baking Flour

2 tablespoons rolled oats

½ teaspoon baking powder

¼ teaspoon baking soda

pinch of sea salt

a sprinkle of cinnamon

1 tablespoon + 2 teaspoons of unrefined coconut oil

¼ cup + 2 teaspoons unsweetened almond milk

1 medium banana

Preheat a small pan over medium heat.

Combine the dry ingredients, flour, oats, baking powder, baking soda, and sea salt in a bowl.  Whisk the wet ingredients together in another bowl, coconut oil and almond milk.  Add wet ingredients to dry and stir to combine throughly.  Slice banana into thin slices.  Reserve about a third of the slices for topping the pancake.  Add the remaining slices to the batter.

Add about a teaspoon of oil to your preheated pan.  Add pancake batter and spread out with the back of a spoon.  When the surface starts to form bubbles, and a quick peak underneath the pancake shows a golden brown color, flip with a spatula.  Cook until other side is golden brown as well.

Sprinkle pancake with remaining banana slices, as well as any other toppings you like.  I’m partial to maple syrup, blueberries and slivered almonds.DSC03861

If I had buttermilk like Joy calls for in the original recipe, I totally would have used it.  This pancake is perfectly light and fluffy, chewy from the oats and just all around a delicious treat.  Happy Thursday!

Lavender Gin Fizz

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Any one who knows me well, know that my drink of choice will always be a gin and tonic.  Not only is it a Steube side of the family drink, but it’s just down right refreshing.  My dad refers to them as “habit forming.”  It’s not hard to see why; sweet tonic water, a shot of smooth gin with its signature juniper flavor and a big squeeze of lime, all poured over ice cubes makes a drink that will cool off anyone on a hot day.

This summer, I’ll still be drinking gin and tonics, (especially at my aunt’s wedding this weekend!) but I’ll also be adding this drink to my go to list.  I made my sister one of these delightful Lavender Gin Fizzes yesterday evening and she had no trouble polishing it off.  The lavender simple syrup plays really well with the gin, enhancing the herbal-ness of it.  It comes together in no time and you’ll be sipping away on this Lavender Gin Fizz and wondering why everyone’s still complaining about the heat.

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Lavender Gin Fizz

makes 1 drink

Ingredients:

Lavender Simple Syrup:

1 cup water

1 cup granulated sugar

2 tablespoons dried lavender

In a small pan combine water, sugar and lavender.  Bring to a boil and then remove from heat.  Let mixture steep for 30 minutes and then strain the lavender leaves out.  Store in refrigerator until ready to use.

Drink:

1 8 ounce glass (Ball Jars work great!)

1 shot of your favorite gin ( I used Dancing Pine’s gin)

1 shot of lavender simple syrup

½ a shot of fresh lemon, lime or a combination of lemon and lime juice

Sparkling water

Ice Cubes

Add 6-8 ice cubes to your glass.  Pour in the ingredients, starting with gin and ending with lemon juice.  Pour sparkling water over top of mixture, until in reaches just short of the top of the glass.  Stir with a spoon and enjoy!