Speing Clean the Pantry | Simple Bites

Inspiration to Spring Clean the Pantry

Technically it’s still spring, folks, and never too late to do a little kitchen cleaning and organizing.

A well-stocked pantry of wholesome ingredients goes hand-in-hand with great home cooking. If your staples stay clean and organized, family meals can happen more efficiently.

Sounds good, right?

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Rhubarb Cornmeal Muffins | Simple Bites #recipe #rhubarb

Rhubarb Cornmeal Muffins and gaining perspective

I almost didn’t post this muffin recipe because they turned out a little flatter and uglier than I had hoped, certainly not ideal food styling material.

I was experimenting with a new recipe, inspired by my thriving rhubarb patch and spurred on by a craving for a snacking muffin with a tender crumb. Of course I was out of muffin tin liners, and so instead of pretty little round tops, the batter spread across the pan and fused together in the oven.

The taste and texture were there, though. Light and airy, spiced and moist, with tangy pockets of rhubarb, and crunchy addicting edges. What could be seen as a mishap could also be interpreted as a triumph.

Ah, these rhubarb muffins were a beautiful mess – and a perfect example of my life these days. With that analogy, I am bringing them to you, along with far more story than most of you probably care to read. If that’s the case, just skip to the recipe at the bottom of the post, because these muffins are worthy of your fresh rhubarb stash.

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Simple No-Cook Vanilla Bean Ice Cream | Simple Bites #recipe

Simple No-Cook Vanilla Bean Ice Cream

There’s a good reason why it has taken me over five years to post an ice cream recipe in this space: I don’t want to assume that each and every one of you has method for churning ice cream, you know what I mean?

I tend to stick with recipes that can be made with basic kitchen tools and appliances, and an ice cream machine is not a necessity – or is it? Considering we mostly use a second-hand, beat-up churn that I picked up for $5 at a garage sale, I’m gong to take a risk and state that if you want homemade ice cream badly enough, you can probably get your hands on a churn.

Because let’s face it, there is nothing better on a sweltering summer day. Sure you can make a no-churn frozen dessert, like this Fresh Strawberry Granita, but when you can also have the option for Salted Cantaloup Honey Sorbet or today’s vanilla bean ice cream, let the heat wave come.

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Clara's spring picnic

Weekend links and photos

Yesterday was the last big push to get the garden planted, and my sore back this morning is a reminder of work well done.

The rain held off until the last seedling was tucked into the raised bed and then it fell gently, as if to bless our efforts. I’ll share a few garden photos soon, even though it’s just starting to come alive.

This week, I started reading The Secret Garden aloud to the boys before bed. I haven’t read this classic in probably twenty years and I found myself drawn in to Mary’s story all over again. There are so many characters to love: Dickon. Ben Weatherstaff. Susan Sowerby.

As spring comes to our homestead, we’ll be reading about changes at Misselthwaite Manor and how the robin showed the way to the secret garden. It seems apropos.

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Food Revolution Day

Food Revolution Day 2015: What YOU can do to help

Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution Day is tomorrow.

Yes, this Friday, May 15th, 2015 is the fourth annual Food Revolution Day – a day of global action created by Jamie Oliver to engage and inspire people of all ages to learn about food and how to cook it. Once again, I am beaming with pride to be a part in my own small way, and I’ve got plenty of ideas for you should you wish to join in the movement.

The Jamie Oliver Food Foundation uses the power of Jamie’s global voice to shout about important food issues, driving individuals and businesses to take part in impactful change and pushing governments to improve their food policies in support of better public health.

This FRD, Jamie is asking for help – and it’s easier than ever to throw your support behind him.

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