Healthfully Ever After

September Closet Staple, Pantry Staple

Outfit PostsCarlene ThomasComment

Time for another foodie outfit post round up! Here's what I've been loving in September for my Closet Staple: Pantry Staples. After doing this series for two months, I've realized a few things: 

1. I have no hair color definition. I look at these pictures and one day it looks red, one day it looks dark brown, one day it looks ash brown. And all of a sudden I am back to LONG hair after a 'beltway bob'. WTF is going on hair? 

2. It's time to play with more jewelry. I have so many cool pieces from my Grandma and her life overseas as well as my parents and their artist friends. I love basics, but I want to spend a few extra minutes adding the 'icing' this fall. Usually I get worried if I go beyond my staples of stud earrings, my hook bracelet and my rings I'm overdoing it. Probably not. 

3. Whole foods are my staples. Just like a good sweater or blazer, one basic can really round out a way of eating or dressing. The versatility of prepping your own food from scratch is so beneficial and gives you lots of options. 

1. The graphic shirt and Virginia grapes: I saw this shirt and immediately wanted to try it on. In theory it looked amazing, but after trying it on it totally sealed the deal. This is a heavy knit that hangs well. The graphics create a great visual shape AND you can wear it with brown or black boots or a bag. Come on. As for the grapes, we were just lingering in grape harvest season here in Virginia. Grapes are great for a snack, for freezing and throwing in smoothies, adding to salads but also eating with, duh-cheese. These concords have great flavor but are kind of a pain to eat because of the itty bitty seeds.

2. The boyfriend sweater and pumpkins: Truth be told, this sweater was the husband's. Actually, I have three of these sweaters of his that he has graciously let me steal. These J.Crew beauties have been my favorites for years. Even though they're from the men's line, they are the perfect blend of a little cozy and roomy and fitted, especially if you're a little more 'top heavy'. J. Crew actually is now coming out with a woman's version which is called, what else, The Boyfriend Sweater. Here's some advice, buy the men's version which is literally half price. As for the pumpkins...need I really explain? I'm so excited to share some soups, salads, pastas and smoothies (and cocktails) that I'll be making with pumpkin this fall. Remember, it doesn't always have to be sweet.

3. The two tone knit dress and olive oil bread: Damn it Tarjay. This dress totally caught me on a Target run where I was probably going in for something like staples and pasta. Although I shortened the hem a good three or four inches (I'm only 5'4"-5'5"), I am so in love with this easy dress in camel and black. Perfect for a day at the winery and easy to add with black tights for winter. Or, because this dress is likely no longer in stores, buy this awesome graphic camel and black sweater dress. Which being inside a Target will somehow make you do anyway. The bread is an olive oil foccocia I ALWAYS make. This is the recipe I make for our usually bread consumption maybe once a week. Since Melinda from Knead and Know taught me this recipe I have yet to buy 'store' bread. I think we're going on like five months of not buying bread, just making it at home. And it's amazing. My friend Katie and I just signed up for her croissant class this fall. SO EXCITED. 

Curried Fairy Tale Eggplants

Healthy HostessCarlene ThomasComment

The husband and I spent a great weekend at Stone Tower Winery catching up with the girls (and their other halves) that I did my dietetic internship with! It's always so amazing to spend a couple hours relaxing and laughing over Virginia wine on a fall day. That's really as good as it gets. Today I'm sharing another eggplant recipe? I put a question mark there because, really? Eggplant again? Yes. I've got another way I am actually willing to consume this strange produce: curried. Also fairy tale eggplants...cutest name ever. 

Curried Fairy Tale Eggplants
Curried Fairy Tale Eggplants

Fairy Tale Curried Eggplant

/// Ingredients ///

  • fairy tale eggplants, halved
  • chana masala spice blend
  • olive oil
  • salt
  • mint, cilantro, yogurt, apple to serve with brown rice or greens

/// Directions /// Slice eggplants in half. Rub with chana masala spice mix. Drizzle with olive oil. Bake at 350 on a baking sheet for fifteen mins or until soft. You should be able to easily stab it through with a fork or scoop it out with a spoon from the flesh.  Add a little salt and serve with yogurt, mint, cilantro and brown rice. I personally prefer to scoop the eggplants out and eat these without the skin because I'm a picky pants.

I like how warming the spices are in this curry mix without being overwhelming crazy-spicy-hot. Chopped crisp apple is the right balance of brightness and crispness to pair with this kind of mushy dish. 

Curried Fairy Tale Eggplants

Clean Cocktails: Corn Based Drink!

Healthy HostessCarlene ThomasComment
Clean Cocktails: Corn Based Drink! 

Happy Friday! You guys aren't going to believe it (lies-you totally saw this coming), but I've done another vegetable based cocktail: corn edition.  With the last bit of corn season going out and harvest coming in, I've been thinking about how to pull this off all summer. It's amazing. Seriously, I love this cocktail. Go see how to make it for yourself to kick off the weekend. 

This weekend we're hitting a vineyard with the girls I did my dietetic internship with and their other halves. We always pull together a picnic and yes, enjoy lots of Virginia wine. My other 'exciting' weekend project? Taking the dog to the groomer's. Poor Kobe has tons and tons of hair and while we typically only shave him at the start of summer, homedog is getting another buzz to stop the dog fur tumbleweeds from taking over our house. It's the little things.

Clean Cocktails: Corn Based Drink! 

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