Smoked Salmon Egg Cups (with Almond Breeze!)

Happy Tuesday, all! I’m here with a brand spankin’ new recipe for you — one of the extra delicious variety.

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Well, it’s extra delicious if you happen to love eggs, smoked salmon, and dill. If you don’t like any of those things, then you need to change this might not be up your alley, hahaha. I present to you: smoked salmon egg cups!

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Now, as you guys know, I am a notorious breakfast skipper. Or, at least, I was in my past (grossly unhealthy and overweight) life. It always made sense to me to skip it, as the chronic starvation diet yo-yoer that I was told me that skipping a meal = skipping calories which must = weight loss. FALSE. Skipping breakfast just meant my metabolism was sleeping until I crammed a cheesesteak into my mouth at lunch. Skipping breakfast just meant that I was more likely to make bad choices later in the day. So now I say, boo to skipping breakfast.

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Which is where these beauties come in. See, while I really do try my best not to skip breakfasts anymore, I am unfortunately a creature of (bad) habit. Also, I really, really love to sleep. So if my breakfast doesn’t come in grab-and-go form, it usually doesn’t get eaten. Unfortunately, most grab-and-go breakfasts are sugar-laden bakery-style treats (mmmm, heavenly) and since I’m trying to actively cut down on both my simple carbs AND my sugar consumption, those aren’t a very viable option for me anymore. So I put together a recipe for a breakfast that’s portable (and adorable) using just four simple ingredients: eggs, smoked salmon, fresh dill, and unsweetened Blue Diamond Almond Breeze almond milk.

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They turned out great! They’re dairy-free, if you’re like me and tend to experience a bit of… discomfort… when you have milk. You can also use these same ingredients to make an omelette (I do 2 eggs with ~2 tbsp of almond milk for my omelettes) if you’re better at, um, mornings than I am. But you know how much better things are when they come in miniaturized muffin-form anyway, so this really works out for everyone. These would also be fantastic to serve for brunch! Already individually portioned, they’d be right at home next to a pile of silver dollar pancakes and some bacon strips. Nom.

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This recipe makes 12 egg cups, so that’s enough to have two each morning for 6 days! Or three for 4 days. Your choice. They keep in the fridge for up to a week, and while I think they taste just fine cold or at room temp, you can zap them in the microwave for a bit if you like. (Just not too long. Seriously. Not only will they overcook if you reheat them for too long, they will also burn your prints right off for your fingertips. #tested)

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Smoked Salmon Egg Cups

Ingredients:

6 large eggs
1/4 cup fresh dill, chopped
1/2 cup unsweetened Blue Diamond Almond Breeze almond milk (Original flavor)
3 oz. smoked salmon, diced
Salt & pepper to taste

Directions:

1. Heat oven to 350*.
2. In a bowl, whisk eggs, chopped dill, almond milk, and salt & pepper together until thoroughly combined.
3. Spray muffin tin with nonstick baking spray and distribute smoked salmon evenly throughout the cups.
4. Pour egg mixture over the smoked salmon, filling the cups about 2/3 of the way.
5. Bake for 10 – 12 minutes, or until eggs are no longer jiggly. They may expand in the oven, but will deflate once they have been removed from the heat. If you have any issues getting the top to solidify, pop them under the broiler for an additional minute.
6. Enjoy!

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As I’ve said, these are just wonderful. I’ve been having two egg cups with half a high-protein bagel with sunbutter or PB, and sometimes a banana or some grapes. SO delicious, SO filling, and SO good for you! They did come out quite dill-y, which I love, but if you’re not as into that as I am, just scale back the dill a bit. Or you can leave it out all together if you like. I bet they’d taste epic with basil instead, too. Mmm, maybe I’ll try that for next time.

Happy breakfasting!

almondbreezelogoThe above post was sponsored by Blue Diamond Almond Breeze, but all content is 100% my own.

Vacation in a Glass

Hi dee ho, friends! Guess what? We got SNOW here last night! Finally! I mean, technically it had snowed like twice before, but this time it really stuck and is pretty and causing traffic issues all over the metropolitan DC area. Hooray!

Now, as we recently learned (re-learned?) I spent a good deal of my life growing up in Canada. So, I really like snow. I actually like winter a lot. I’d rather be curled up in a warm blanket than sweating my buns off in the August humidity any day. Of course, that isn’t to say that I don’t get my fair share of the winter blues. I’ve actually been having a touch of the SADs lately (Seasonal Affective Disorder), truth be told. Which essentially means I’ve been even moodier and more emotional than normal. (The horror!) And also means I’ve been fantasizing about hopping on a flight to Miami pretty much every other day. (I think writing my second book by the poolside sounds kind of nice, don’t you?)

Unnnnfortunately, the reality is that I have no money and even less vacation time, and probably won’t be able to swing the weekend vacation of my winter dreams. So when I was tasked with creating a recipe for Blue Diamond Almond Breeze Almondmilk (my favorite!!) I knew exactly the direction I wanted to go in.

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A smoothie that is meant for those mornings when I suck at eating breakfast, and also for when I come down with a bit of the winter blues. Two birds, one stone, that whole thing.

Oh yeah, and because it’s me, I made it all healthy and crap. 😉

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The concept is pretty darn simple. Throw the ingredients in a blender and go to town. If you have a really nice, high-speed blender like a Vitamix or Ninja or something, all the better!

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Also, if you have a high-speed blender, you can use frozen fruit ingredients instead of fresh ones and give this smoothie more of a milkshake-like consistency. But that’s not quite as winter compatible, given that it’s already been below-freezing this week.

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Healthy Tropical Breakfast Smoothie

Ingredients:

1 cup Almond Breeze Almondmilk Coconutmilk Blend (THIS IS MY FAVORITE THING EVER, BTW)
1/2 cup pineapple chunks + juice
1/2 a banana
5 – 8 strawberries
Generous handful of spinach
1 cup ice

Directions:

Dump into a blender. Blend.

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Pretty simple, huh? Of course, the addition of the spinach means that the smoothie turns into a terrible mucky color, but I promise you can’t taste anything spinach-y WHATSOEVER! Nutritional stats look like this:

Calories: 200, Fat: 3 grams, Carbohydrate: 40 grams, Fiber: 6 grams (!), Protein: 3 grams

A little high on the carb front (cause it’s got fruit, which equals sugar) but a surprisingly awesome amount of fiber and a little bit o’ protein to boot. Not too shabby for a delicious breakfast smoothie, IMO! And of course, there’s the part where it tastes really yummy, too.

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Also, I got bangs.

The above post was sponsored by Blue Diamond Almond Breeze, but the photos, words, and, most importantly, opinions are all my own.

Winner, and Still Champion!

So in yesterday’s awesome, bubbleriffic excitement over my book release, I totally spaced on the fact that I was also supposed to pick the winners for the Blue Diamond Almonds special seasonal flavors giveaway! Sorry!

So, without further adieu, here are the winners!

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Congratulations Heather and Sarah!

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Email me at [email protected] with your mailing addresses, and I’ll ensure the goods get sent your way!

Have an awesome Vampire Diaries Day Thursday, everyone! And don’t forget to pick up your copy of Terra, hehe. 😉

Get Your Good Going (Giveaway!)

GOOD MORNING! Er, I mean, good afternoon. Ha! I got a little behind on my posting schedule today, but I promise that I’ll make it up to you because I’ve got an AWEXOME (yes, it’s so awesome that the S has been replaced by an X) giveaway for you all!

Now, this probably bears discussing in more detail later, but the reason for my tardiness is because I spent the morning at the orthodontist. Yep, I am considering joining the adult braces club. I had braces when I was 12 – 13, but my teeth have still shifted a ton since I got them off way back when (much to my parents’ chagrin). So, I went in for a consultation.

What came out of this consultation, you ask? Why, the knowledge that braces are HOLY CRAP SO EXPENSIVE OMG. But I got a few different options, with different prices attached to those options, so I basically just need to decide how much my vanity is really worth. But given how many self-portrait photos I post to this here blog, I’m gonna guess it’s probably worth a lot. Hahahahaha.

Hokay. So. With the holidays approaching, and all the changes going on in my life right now (my book, a new position at my (day)job, exciting changes in my family, all that stuff!) I’ve got a lot of good going on right now. But keeping all the good stuff in the forefront of my mind when it’s cold and dreary and our heating bills are skyrocketing and my weight loss efforts are going turtle-slow… it’s not always the easiest thing.

Which is why it’s extra important for me to ensure I’m doing all that I can to make those not-as-good things better. There’s not much I can do about the weather, but I can certainly combat the cold with my fuzzy sweaters, Santa hat, and miniature schnauzer bedwarmers. In terms of my weight loss, well, it’s the holidays, and I’ve already admitted that maintenance–not loss–is my main priority right now. But that doesn’t mean I want to lapse out of control completely (I don’t want a repeat of last year’s 10-pound holiday gain!).

Doing things like ensuring I’ve got appropriate foods to eat in between cookie exchanges and holiday parties is a pretty important part of that process. Lucky for me, I’ve got that covered right now, too. I was contacted by Blue Diamond Almonds a couple of weeks ago to see if I was interested in doing a sponsored post and giveaway! Naturally, as someone who is already a huge fan of their products (Blue Diamond Coconut Almondmilk FTW!!!!!) I gave them a RESOUNDING yes! Their current campaign is all about “Get Your Good Going,” and, well, here we are!

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They sent me a can each of their brand new flavors: Rosemary & Black Pepper, and TOASTED COCONUT. Firstoff, let me just say that these are literally like crack almonds. Like, almonds that are equivolent to crack cocaine. (Granted, I’ve never actually done cocaine, but I imagine that it evokes a similar feeling… and addiction.) I have always been a huge proponent of nuts (haaaaaaaaahahahaha, please never take that line out of context, bahaha) as a healthy snack component. They are SO good for you, SUPER filling, and, um, oh yeah, delicious. These two flavors are certainly no exception.

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You get 28 almonds for 160/170 calories (depending on which flavor), which is actually a lot of nuts (yes, I’m laughing again, and yes, I’m a 14-year-old boy). The pic above depicts 28 if you combine both flavors… unless I can’t count. Which might be possible. Both of new flavors are sold exclusively at Target, and I swear. They are just, urrrrrgh, so good. SO GOOD! And in order to help get YOUR good going, too, we have a fun giveaway! Huzzah!

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Two (yes, two!) of you will receive one can each of the Rosemary & Black Pepper AND Toasted Coconut almonds. To enter, simply leave a comment saying how you get your good going during the winter months!

As always, you get extra entries for liking my blog on Facebook, following me on Twitter, and tweeting/posting/blogging about this giveaway.

And hey, since we’re in book-release-countdown-mode too, you get an additional entry if you go like my author page on Facebook as well!

Entries for all! Make sure you come leave separate comments on this post for each thing you do, cause that’s how the giveaway selector plugin thing I use determines who wins. Two random winners will be selected on Wednesday, December 12th (book release day!)

The above post was sponsored by Blue Diamond Almonds, but the photos, words, and, most importantly, opinions are all my own.

One last thing: since we’re in the season of giving and all, I wanted to throw out a quick mention: reader Nicole recently reached out to me with a request that I think is really wonderful. Nicole’s friend, Rhonda, has a grandmother who was recently diagnosed with Stage 4 cancer. The doctor says that this Christmas will be her last, and so Rhonda is asking for people to send holiday cards to her grandparents for Christmas. I thought this was a really sweet, touching thing, and wanted to spread the word. If you’re interested in sending a Christmas/Hannukah/Kwanza/Christmahanukwanzakkah card to Rhonda’s grandparents, the address is here. Mine went in the mail yesterday!