necessity is the mother of invention {& that's why we're here, friends} we dance to the music, we play in the kitchen & sometimes that means one of us breaks the wine glasses {we're not saying who} the cook is a cubicle-warmer/learning & development specialist by day, & a writer/photographer/kitchen goddess by night who has fun inventing healthy things she can actually eat we seriously both need capes & a kick-ass theme song & the baker is a catering delivery superhero; no job too big or too early or too floral not to come home & make magic with a mixer & an oven we are always gluten-free, dairy-free, & magically delicious now, somebody turn up the music! we're about to get our dance on!

29 September 2008

sangria {a shameless plug}

Where in the world have I been?

Not starving, I assure you. It is most definitely the case that I post the least here, sharing my latest culinary discoveries once inspiration strikes. As I've been dealing with a variety of life issues -- who doesn't have them, really? -- this space has gone (no pun intended) to the back burner. I think it's safe to say that my intent with this space has changed -- I'm going to leave it open and post new things when there are new things to share. Other than that, it's not going to be a priority.

That being said, I have to share this. There is nothing original about it, but I have to share because in the less than three months since I discovered this recipe, I have used it three times.

Strictly speaking, there's nothing particularly healthy about this sweet and tart adult beverage. But we've gotta have a little fun every now and then, don't we?

So here you go: a recipe for a positively delightful sangria.

(And yes, it's totally gluten-free and dairy-free).


31 August 2008

turkey & vegetable soup

I am sad to say that it is already soup weather here. In the meteorological anomaly that is the Pacific Northwest, the last day of August finds us with some ominous looking clouds and tempatures that finally broke the upper forty-degree range around noon. I've just turned on the heat and wrapped myself in an afghan. A steaming mug of tea is waiting for me. Though the calendar might tell me otherwise, I'd like to say welcome to autumn.

And so I find myself craving soup. Today's recipe is modified from one a friend made while doing a detox diet for a few days. It smelled so yummy, I knew I had to make it myself. And of course, I had to make it my own.

Featured ingredient:
I think the only ingredient in this particular soup that hasn't been used here before is kale. Kale is a leafy vegetable closely related to cabbage. With more than 1,300% DV in a single cup, kale is the off the charts with potassium (otherwise known as Vitamin K) and is no slouch when it comes vitamins A and C, either. It is rich in a lot of nutients that studies have shown help lessen the chances of certain types of cancer (ovarian cancer, in particular). And ... it tastes great in soup!!

So without further ado, let's get cooking!!

1/2 large yellow onion, chopped
Chopped carrots
Chopped kale
Chopped fresh broccoli
Garlic, finely chopped
Vegetable or chicken broth
Olive oil
Sea salt

1 lb. ground turkey

Directions: In a large skillet, heat olive oil
Add onion, garlic, carrots, kale, broccoli.
Cook until onions are translucent and other vegetables are softened and cooked down.
Once cooked, transfer cooked vegetables to a large soup pot and cover in broth.
Add salt and pepper, as well as any other spices you'd like
Simmer on low heat for 2-3 hours.
Place ground turkey in warm skillet.
Cook until done and drain fat.
Add to soup pot.

Enjoy with some warm gluten-free cornbread, and yeah ... that's yummy!!

30 August 2008

getting back on track

Based on the lack of posting here, one might think that I stepped out of the kitchen for awhile. Rest assured I'm still eating healthy and delicious food, and I've been eating it with equally delicious people (I hope my girls don't take offense to being referred to as "delicious", but they just are!). Summer is frequently a busy time as -- at least here in the Pacific Northwest -- we shed our fleeces and raincoats and expose our skins to sunlight and warmth, letting the ice thaw in our veins and feel the tingle of summer in our blood. Aaahhh ...

I know it's usually all about my almost-recipes and food in this place (with the occasional exception of poetry inspired by my bodily functions or lack thereof), but I just wanted to mention something that I've overheard and been thinking on lately.

It's the idea of getting back on track.

You know how it is: a health scare, whether our own or that of a close friend or family member, shocks us into "good" or "healthy" new habits. But then it starts to wear on us. Though once frightened enough to adopt healthy habits, the desire to stay within the limits of what we know is good for our bodies slowly gives way to guilt and finally wanes toward apathy. We start to feel hedged in by internal lists of shoulds and should nots. We abandon the list in favor of satisfying ourselves with what we want most in the moment. Out with a group of friends, we don't want to be the one to ask for something on the side or to hold that sauce or ask what the ingredients are. Eventually the motivation and any remaining vestiges of the fear that inspired the initial change lose presence in ourselves altogether and well, it's just so darn hard to do it, so I'm just going to eat and do what I want.

Maybe we notice that, once back to our old ways, we start to feel sluggish, tired, or just a little "off". Maybe we don't notice a change at all. The change might be so slow and gradual that we really don't notice it at all.

Far from mocking the line of thinking that says I'm just going to eat what I want, consequences be damned, I affirm that it is one I know well. For the most part, now that I know what my dietary limitations are, I feel free to roam wide and free within those boundaries. Most of the time, they do not limit or constrain me. But I'll admit, there are times when it gets old. I recently lamented to a friend that sometimes I just get so tired of having to maintain a heightened awareness of what I'm putting in my body and then once consumed, maintaining a mindfulness about how it is affecting me. I get tired of how much supplementation I require just to feel normal and to ensure I don't end up in the land of scary and dangerous deficiencies again.

When my girlfriends were here visiting, we had a big dinner on our last night together. I made turkey burgers with grilled onions and all the fixings, sangria, and a variety of salads. The whole evening was just yummy. Spirits were high and the room was rolling with laughter. When it came time to pass around the dessert, I didn't want to ruin flow of things for myself; I took my portion of the banana pudding with whipped cream (dairy and dairy) and crushed vanilla wafers (gluten), which I did my best to avoid. It was delicious. I had only a small portion of what was served to me and enjoyed the remainder of the evening with my friends. Even so, it was a transgression of boundaries that I know and understand well.

I'll spare you the gory details, but today was the first day in a week my body didn't suffer the repercussions of that choice.

I know other food allergy sufferers who, having decided that staying within those limits are just "too hard", eat those things that not only cause them momentary discomfort, but that also have the potential to cause serious deficiencies and in the long run, chronic and painful illnesses like anemia and osteoporosis, and possibly seizures.

I will never forget one day when a friend and I waited in line waiting to order our coffee at Starbucks. I took a long and mournful look at the pastry case and remembered with nostalgia yummies like pumpkin scones and marionberry muffins. When asked if I wanted anything to eat, I told the barista, "I would love to have something, but unfortunately I'm allergic to gluten."

And then she told me a bit of her story. In her late forties, this tall, lean, athletic-looking woman had been diagnosed with celiac disease just six months earlier and had also more recently learned that she had advanced osteoporosis. This is common for celiac sufferers who, unaware of their allergy, eat the gluten that damages their villi of the small intestine, compromising its ability to absorb nutrients effectively.

I always remember this when someone tells me how hard it is to avoid gluten or other foods that might be harmful to them. It reminds me that while it's difficult to stay on track, the consequences of going off track have the potential to cause discomfort in the short term and chronic illness in the long term. Personally, osteoporosis is something I'd rather avoid.

There will continue to be times where I'll have to pass on the homemade bread and say "no thanks" when the dessert is passed around. Sometimes that's really going to stink. But staying on track means in the short term that I'll feel energetic and healthy, maximizing my chances of engaging fully in my own life. In the long term, passing the plate means I'm doing everything in my power to enable my body to remain healthy as I get older.

I know that there are no guarantees. I can't control every factor that contributes to the state of my overall health and I certainly can't stop the aging process. It's humbling and frustrating, but I've got a limited amount of control when it comes to managing my health. I can control my diet and exercise: those are the small pieces I can manage, trusting that the small sacrifices I make in the short term will have long range benefits.

For me, what it boils down to is this: my health is mine alone to manage. Whether I do so well or poorly is up to me.

29 July 2008

o, my remedial colon {a poem that has nothing to do with punctuation marks}

It's true: I have no shame. If you read my post about the smoothies and fiber, then you know exactly what I mean.

Ahem ...

My colon is remedial,
I cannot tell a lie.
Some of you might cringe now
Or roll your eyes and sigh.

I’m giving you fair warning
So if you want it, now’s your chance
To stand right up or turn and run
Without a second glance.

Some girls dream of riches
And others dream of fame,
Or handsome men or shopping sprees,
And them I cannot blame.

Today my dreams are smaller
And simple to the core:
A functioning digestive system,
I ask for nothing more.

I never thought I’d say this,
But I now declare it’s true:
All I want is nothing more
Than to have a normal poo.

I’m weary of the bloating
The puffiness and the pain;
I’d like a trip to the bathroom
That does not involve much strain.

I’d really be quite thrilled –
I might do a little dance
If things would move and once again
I could fit inside my pants;

If I could go to the doctor
And without a second thought
Avoid the fine details
Of my time upon the pot.

If I could just be normal,
“Regular” some might say,
Scarce would I be able
To keep my joy at bay.

I’d tell you all about it,
You would be sure to know
There’d be a lightness in my voice,
And to my face, a glow.

But for now it’s mine to try
Every laxative known to man:
Powders, pills, and flaxseeds
With my fiber-full eating plan.

Miralax and slippery elm,
Psyllium and dried plum;
Smooth move tea and senna leaf
All moved through my bum.

I don’t care where it comes from,
What it is that makes it move,
So long as I am able
To get back into a groove.

On the outside I look healthy,
Young and full of joie de vivre,
But on the inside I think I just had
Birthday number ninety-three.

And so I sigh and moan all day,
Praying for the end
To this profound constipation
Which is nothing like a friend.

I’m swelling to my limits,
The bloating is quite a sight.
If these aids don’t work, I just might need
A stick of dynamite.

And so my dear intestine,
I beg you to cooperate
To get in gear and do your job,
To free the padlocked gate.

I’m doing everything I can
To give what you require,
To be gentle in my coaxing,
To move the stubborn mire.

I’d really be so thankful,
I want it more than wealth
If you would let me live and move,
Enjoying better health.

I guess I’m done, the poem is over
There’s nothing more to do,
But hope and pray and watch and wait
For the perfect number two.


09 July 2008

vegan challenge: berry fiberlicious smoothies

Oh yeah. I'm going there.

There's no skirting around the issue. This is a post about how I got (am getting?) um ... unplugged.

More than you want to know, right?

Before I get to the recipe, I just have to provide the background and inspiration for it. I don't know if anyone else will appreciate this history, but since there is a reason behind every recipe here and this is my blog, I'm going to share it anyway.

Let me just say that in the past two years of having a malfunctioning and especially finicky digestive tract, I've learned a lot about the particular region of the body that I'll refer to as the lower digestive system (more than anyone should have to know, really) and have gotten oddly comfortable discussing the things it does and does not do. It is a major indicator of one's overall health, and especially so when digestive issues are involved. So my family doctor asks about it. My gastroenterologist asks about it. The naturopath asks about it too. Heck, even my chiropractor asks about it. So I've gotten used to paying close attention to its behavior and learned quickly to get over my really squeamy squeamishness about it.

If I've ever brought it up with you and you wish I would just shut up (or if you're reading this thinking good Lord, I wish she would stop), please accept my apologies. It's just that when this thing that wasn't working properly (and hadn't been for a long time) started working, I got a little excited. And like I said, I've gotten used to talking about it.

Wow, am I really writing this? It would seem so.

One of the side effects of my thyroid kicking back into gear again was that things started, uh ... not working quite right in that lower digestive region. In fact, there was barely any activity at all, at least not without a great deal of effort. For a little over a month. (not good)

I was just a little irritated, considering that I already have a fairly high-fiber diet. I have gluten-free steel-cut oats (fiber) with ground flaxseed (fiber), raisins, chopped almonds, and soymilk in the morning. I eat two apples with the skin every day, one in the morning and another before lunch (fiber, fiber). Especially now that they're in season, I eat a lot of raw veggies like broccoli, cauliflower, carrots, peppers, snap peas, etc. (fiber, fiber, FIBER). I eat fresh fruits. I enjoy and regularly consume legumes like black beans, lentils, and kidney beans (hello, HOLY FIBER!!).

And still, no change. What the ... ??

I tried some teas that promised the desired effect and there was a little action. But nothing to write home about (even if Mom had been willing to read such news).

I had a follow-up appointment with my naturopath on Monday and told him that while the thyroid was alive and kickin', things in that lower digestive area were a little ... uh, stopped up. When he put stethoscope to that area, he told me that I had a shocking lack of bowel sounds (who knew??) and subsequently recommended I take psyllium seed. It's the primary ingredient in some of those powdery stir-in laxatives like Metamucil. So I went to my local Co-op and got myself some whole-seed psyllium that promised some terrific bulking action. Oh yeah. Now that sounds like a good time.

Now, I'm not one to be put off of odd- or foul-tasting foods if they have legitimately healthy properties. In fact, I'll probably tell you they're positively delicious. The recommendation was to add a heaping tablespoon of the seed to juice, but I thought I'd try adding it to some raspberry tea. I won't lie to you: it was disgusting. With all that soluble fiber, it turned into a gelatinous mixture, like Jell-o that hadn't quite set yet. It was gritty and there was no getting past the musky, earthy taste of the seeds. I could barely control my gag reflex.

So I did my best to find a way to mask it and make the consumption of this not only bearable, but tasty.

And friends, I did it (finally!!, the readers exclaim in unison). Smoothies are a fabulous way to absorb nutrients quickly and a delicious way to enjoy all the summer fruit that's in season right now. I even added some Emergen-C to give it an extra added vitamin boost and a nice citrus-y zing and slight fizz to it.

One of the greatest things about smoothies is that they are very hard to screw up and very easy to make exactly the way you like. And berries (raspberries, blueberries, blackberries, etc.) are super-fabulous in that they're full of fiber in their own right, so I am getting plenty of fiber action in these babies (if I'm doing my math right, about 10-11g for a single serving).

So, without further ado, this is my favorite version of my
Berry Fiber-licious Smoothie:

Frozen raspberries, approx 1/2 cup
Frozen blackberries, approx 1/2 cup
1 heaping tablespoon psyllium seed
Agave syrup (or your favorite sweetener like Stevia, honey, etc.)
Vanilla hemp milk (rice, soy, or almond milk will also do nicely)
1 packet Emergen-C (I used the tangerine flavor)
Splash sparkling mineral water (optional)

And as for alternatives ... I think it's obvious by now, but this recipe will work just fine without all the add-ins (Emergen-C, psyllium seed, sparkling mineral water) and would also work well with regular milk or orange juice. Whatever floats your boat!

Put frozen berries in the bottom of a blender
Add psyllium seed
Drizzle with desired amount of agave syrup
Add Emergen-C powder
Cover with non-dairy milk of choice
Add mineral water (if desired)

Puree until smooth. Pour in a glass and enjoy (entirely without the seedy, gritty flavor ... hallelujah!!).

And uh yeah ... let's just say a couple of these a day and things are on their way humming right along (in fits and starts, just in case you wanted to know). And so now I gulp down my pride and dab away a single tear trailing down my cheek, think ... if I can help just one person ... [sniffles]

{yes, that was a wee bit of sarcasm} :o)

NOTE: Increasing one's fiber intake should be done gradually, and with a lot of water. For some good fiber tips, check out this site.

smoothie photos by kirsten.michelle

30 June 2008

vegan challenge: lentil burgers

As I mentioned in a previous post, I've been challenging myself to prepare meals that (while still abiding within the already gluten-free and dairy-free parameters of this blog, because if I can't eat it, I'm not gonna cook it) are:

  • vegan (no animal products of any kind including: meat, eggs, dairy, casein, honey, etc.)
  • do this while limiting my use of tofu or other soy-based food items
  • the food is tasty & satisfying, and finger-lickin' good (my apologies to the Colonel)
Ilse asked a really good question about the why behind limiting the use of tofu or other soy products. Since it's a darn good question, here's a few [hopefully] darn good answers:

1. It is a challenge, after all. In general, tofu is an easy protein "fallback" in vegetarian cooking (and for good reason: the stuff is incredibly versatile and really good for you!!). I want to broaden my horizons, think outside the box, embrace the challenge aspect of this & see what other options are out there for healthy vegan cooking that also provides the protein our bodies need.

2. Allergy awareness. I know at least a few people now who have soy allergies. Thankfully, I am not one of them, but I wanted to challenge myself to make healthy, delicious, vegan meals that my soy-sensitive friends could enjoy too.

3. Global thinking. I learned from a friend of mine who has Brasilian heritage that a lot of the deforestation in Brasil may be because of the soy crop that is planted there. I think much of this may be to produce alternative fuel, but I still want to be mindful of how I might be contributing to that. There seems to be some debate about whether or not the soy crop is actually having a detrimental effect on the rainforests, but still ... it can't hurt to explore alternative protein options!!

Anyway ...

so, why this recipe?
Something I've missed sorely since learning I cannot tolerate gluten is veggie burgers.

I know!! You'd think those would be safe, right? But all those veggie burgers you see in the grocery store contain wheat flour and/or whole grains (including wheat) to act as a binder and to improve the texture. I have made a tofu-based version a few times that only took four or five attempts to perfect and satisfy my rigorous standards, but after some tweaking, I think I'm enjoying this recipe even more!!

totally-good-for-you ingredients:
2/3 c. green lentils (or your favorite lentil variety)
2 c. vegetable broth (I prefer No Chicken Broth by Imagine Foods), or water
2-3 tbsp. of your favorite salt-free herb blend
1/2 finely chopped yellow onion
2 tbsp. wheat-free tamari (or soy sauce, or worcestershire if you can handle gluten)
2/3 c. sunflower seeds (raw and shelled)
rice flour
olive oil

bring broth to a boil, add herbs
after lowering to medium heat, add lentils
cook until almost all the liquid is absorbed (about 15 minutes)

place in blender or food processor
add chopped onion, tamari sauce
puree until mixture reaches desired smoothness
** you may need to add a bit of additional liquid to ease the pureeing process**

NOTE: don't worry about the lentils being pureed until perfectly smooth. So long as it's a bit "doughy", you're good to go!!

empty lentil mixture into a large bowl
pour in whole sunflower seeds, stir well into lentils
add and fold in rice flour a few tablespoons at a time until lentil mixture sticks together well and forms a nice ball, not sticking too much to your hands (I think I used 2/3 - 3/4 cup).
with your hands, separate into balls and press into desired size of patties

in a large skillet, add a good pour of olive oil and heat skillet to medium heat
add lentil patties to skillet and cook on both sides until lightly browned and slightly crispy on the outside.

make 4-6 patties, depending on size.

Enjoy on a bun or by itself, with avocado slices (I ate mine before i took this photo!!) or your favorite condiment and a side of healthy veggies.

Making it your own? Tell me how you improved upon it!!

more more more ...
  • See another delicious recipe with lentils here.
  • Check out the health benefits of lentils here.

23 June 2008

vegan challenge: orange tofu stirfry

Can I just say yum?!

Far be it from me to toot my own horn, but I must say this dish had me making noises usually reserved for good, long massages and hot baths on a cold day. This dish totally brings the yum!!

NOTE: As the header of this post suggests, I am undertaking a self-imposed challenge to cook within the following parameters:
  • the food is vegan (no animal products of any kind including: meat, eggs, dairy, casein, honey, etc.)
  • do this while limiting my use of tofu or other soy-based food items
  • the food is tasty & satisfying, and finger-lickin' good (my apologies to the Colonel)
  • also stay within the gluten-free parameters of this blog (duh!!)

So without further ado ...

The ingredients in this dish are pretty much all repeats of others that have been used previously, so I won't repeat myself. Suffice it to say this is something that your body will thank you for and that will have your tastebuds begging for another bite.

tasty ingredients:
firm tofu (1 package)
wheat-free tamari
grated orange peel

red curry paste
large green bell pepper, chopped
1/2 large red onion, chopped
carrots, cut into medallions
fresh cilantro
olive oil

easy as gluten-free pie instructions:
after opening package of tofu, drain and cut into cubes, place in a bowl
cover well with tamari sauce
grate orange peel into bowl from about 1/2 large navel orange
cover and place in fridge, allowing to marinate for a minimum of 2-4 hours (or ideally, overnight)

** and I will just say ... tofu is an amazing sponge when it comes to flavor, so the longer you let it marinate, the more bang you're going to get for your buck.**

heat oven to approximately 400 degrees
place cubed tofu on cookie sheet and place in oven, stirring periodically until most of the liquid is cooked away (about 15 minutes)
**this step is entirely optional, but makes the tofu cook faster when preparing the stirfry**

in a large skillet, heat olive oil to medium-high heat
chop veggies: carrots, pepper, and onion and place into hot skillet
add tamari
stir frequently, cooking until onions are translucent
if veggies are done before tofu (see next step), set heat to low to keep warm
add fresh cilantro to veggie mixture and stir in just prior to serving

in a separate skillet, add olive oil and put burner on high heat
add tofu and about 1 tsp (or more, to taste) of red curry paste
cook tofu until golden and crispy on the outside

to enjoy:
place veggies in a bowl and top with tofu.
grab your fork & dig in!!

20 June 2008

cucumber lime salad

happy first day of summer!!

Summer is my favorite because I can snatch up all sorts of fresh and fragrant produce at the Co-op and at the local Farmer's Market. Seriously ... it's a shame there's not some kind of widget I could install so you could smell my kitchen right now. I just came home with bags full of delicious fresh produce. Mmmm ...

I'll admit, I think today's recipe could use some perfecting. Some fresh basil maybe? Or would cilantro be better? How about some freshly-grated ginger?? I'll try it out and let you know, how does that sound?

As you have probably guessed, we've got some crisp and cool cucumbers in this recipe, as well as plenty of other fresh produce. And just what makes them so cool?

Cucumber: The reason you'll see these covering the eyelids of the tragically chic and well-to-do spa-going types is that they contain Vitamin C and caffeic acid which help reduce puffiness and swelling. The skin of the cucumber is chock full of fiber and minerals like potassium, magnesium, and silica too (which is an essential component of healthy connective tissue). The potassium/magnesium/fiber combo present in cucumbers has also been shown to help reduce blood pressure.

tasty fresh ingredients:
2 large cucumbers, peeled & chopped
1/2 c. finely chopped red onion
1/3 c. pine nuts
1 can white kidney (cannellini) beans
1/2 shallot, finely chopped
1 dry pint cherry tomatoes, sliced

simple lime vinaigrette:
1/4 c. olive oil
1/4 c. fresh squeeze lime juice (about 2 limes), or bottled lime juice
pinch sea salt
fresh ground pepper
whisk together well in a small bowl.

oh-so-easy directions:
if desired, peel cucumbers and chop into desired size & add to large bowl
drain beans & add to bowl
add all other ingredients: onion, shallot, tomato, pine nuts
dress with vinaigrette

cover & chill for about 2 hours, or ideally overnight.

salad photo by kirsten.michelle

19 June 2008

check it out!!

All sorts of baked-in ooey-gooey goodness going on over at Confectionery Conceptions ...

WARNING: Buckets may be required.

09 June 2008

yo ho!! yo ho!! a pirate's life for me ...

Late last week, Kaari and I were both in agreement that we needed a lazy day.

Our timbers were thoroughly shivered, you might say.

And what better way to spend a lazy day at home than to invite Johnny Depp and Orlando Bloom to the party?

Our mission:
1. Stay home.
2. Wear pajamas all day.
3. Make it through all three Pirates of the Caribbean movies.
4. Eat pirate-appropriate food while doing it (that also happens to be gluten-free and dairy-free).

Arrr, mateys!!

Every good pirate starts her
day with Starrrrrrrrbucks. Arrr ...

... and really bad eggs
(aka, "breakfast")

For our breakfast, Kaari made gluten-free pancakes with chocolate chips. Sticking with our pirate theme, we christened them Black Pearl Pancakes.

Arrrr ...

Black Pearl Pancakes
1 cup rice flour
1 cup soy milk
1 egg
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt

Mix it together with yer pirate hook or a whisk will do just fine, whatever floats your boat or pirate ship.

Pour the batter onto the hot skillet and add a few chocolate morsels (aka Black Pearls) and "avast"... you have yourselves some tasty Black Pearl Pancakes for you and yer mateys.

Arrrr ... do I sound like a swashbuckling, Buccaneer baker to you?

Treasure Chest Snacks
Because we were nibbling throughout the day, we really didn't have much of a lunch. But we did have some seeded treats appropriate to our Caribbean theme. Using the same recipe that is posted here, I used chopped dried papaya, chopped dried pineapple, coconut shreds, pumpkin seeds, flax seeds, and sunflower seeds.

We also had also plundered some slightly-less-than-healthy booty because hey ... pirates wouldn't be pirates if they followed the rules all the time.

Pieces of Eight Seeded Treats

Mix all ingredients in a large bowl and coat well with brown rice syrup.

Add a splash of tropical-flavored juice.

Bake for 20 minutes at 300 degrees.

Once cooled, cut into desired size and turn over.

Bake for another 10 minutes and 300 degrees and allow to cool.

World's End (because if you're headed to Davey Jones's locker, you might as well have a good time on your way down)

Drink up, me harties, you're home!!

What pirate party would be complete without rum?? These fizzy orange drinks may be a bit too foofy for Jack & his crew (it's probably written somewhere in the pirate code that rum should not be mixed), but they do contain the required pirate ingredient, so in my mind ... they pass!

{Girlie} Pirate Drinks

1/2 c. rum
1/4 c. coconut-pineapple juice
3/4 c. carbonated mango-orange juice
Splash of lime juice
Shake well with ice.
Serve in chilled glasses and pour it down your gullet, you scallawags!!

pirate day photos by kirsten.michelle