Morning and Evening Teas // What I'm Reading

The chill sand of an early October beach. The quiet still dependability of a flat, grey sky. This is my centre.


The other night Sebastian asked me if I believed in magic. Without hesitation, standing in the bathroom toothbrush in hand, I replied YES! We both laughed and he tried to do the whole "but really" thing, because we both know that I value science and facts and things made out of concrete information. But really, I do believe there is magic everywhere and within so many different things. This is a subtle kind of magic, quiet and unexpected. It is more about the places I can visit - the magic found and gathered within shared stories and natural beauty that creates both community and a world inside my mind for me to escape to. 

I've been trying hard these past few weeks to focus on staying present and living in the moment. Of course that cliché sentiment is easier said than done, but right now it is something I am striving for. To feel good where I'm at, to not always be looking to the next adventure, to feel satiated with my existence right now is something I have always felt good at, but am finding harder to reach these days. I have a persistent need to be hiking, exploring, and seeing new things! 

I have an image in my head: I'm standing at the top of a mountain. Evergreens point upwards from below; deep greenness amidst the thin, grey air. The mist is draining as if through my fingers, a vaporous sky that I can sink into and fill my body up to the brim. This place, where roots touch sky and I am hardly more than a pinprick but I also feel as big as the whole world - it is my happy place. 

I am coasting now - making tea to calm the persistence of a feeling that I should be elsewhere. And it's okay. It's all okay. I'm taking this as a time to find a balance, to see who I am without school, without direction, without the solidity that 18 years of structured education brings.

This book - Wildwood - is one of the places I find solace. I've realized by now that I tend to gravitate towards fantasy and childlike stories of adventure when I need a break from everything. I haven't nearly finished this book, in fact I'm not even halfway through, but I wanted to show it to you because I often think of it as a place to go and disappear. I usually have a book that I keep on hand, not consistently reading, but staggered throughout my other activities that brings a sense of adventure and comfort to me. It's a practice of self care, and it's deeply important to me. Some of the other books I've held in this special place took me a year to get through, and some only a month. It is all dependant, I guess. 

So I'm here, making tea and wishing for rainy days. I am loving the comfort and support that this place and you, my readers, bring. I would love to have you all here with me, drinking tea and chatting about our magic lands together. I would love to know what brings you comfort - books, music, tv, movies, hiking, dancing, singing? <3

This isn't so much a recipe as it is an opportunity for me to share some of my quiet time rituals with you. Tea, no matter the type, always makes me feel better. It must be something to do with all the tea I drank growing up, with family and friends, but it is a constant comfort in my life. 

The teas I am sharing with you today are the products of a lot of experimentation. I think I should say now that I am absolutely not an expert (or even a novice) in herbal medicine, so I won't make any claims about what these herbs will do to help you. I only know that they taste amazing and make me happy :)

I love buying loose leaf herbs, flowers, and spices just to mix and match as a soothing potions practice. It can be so fun to just play around here, so I want you to take these teas as a loose framework for your own preferences. 

The lemon ginger "tea" is something I drink almost every morning, first thing after I wake up. The other two teas I usually prepare in the evening because they feel calm to me. 

Let me know if you try any of them out, I would love to hear what you think! 

morning and evening teas

Each tea makes about 1 cup, but really the measurements are based more on taste preference than any kind of precision. I switch them up all the time, adding more of this or that depending on how I feel. Think of this more as a suggestion or guideline for you to create your own favourite tea combinations! 

When I say boiling water in the recipe (is this really a recipe?) I actually mean water that has just boiled. I usually let the kettle sit for about a minute before pouring over my teas. 


Lemon Ginger Morning Tea

  • apprx. 1 inch piece of ginger, peeled and diced
  • juice of half a lemon
  • 1/2 tsp maple syrup
  • water to fill one mug

Stir together the lemon juice and maple syrup in the bottom of a mug. Place the diced ginger and water in small sauce pan and bring to a boil. Once boiling remove from heat and pour into the mug with the lemon and maple syrup. Sometimes I like to add some cold water to my mug if I don't have time in the mornings to wait for the tea to cool. This works well! 


Lavender + Chamomile Tea

  • boiling water to fill one mug
  • 1/2 tsp lavender buds
  • 1/2 tsp chamomile flowers 

Place the lavender and chamomile in a mug (feel free to use a tea strainer or a tea bag). Pour boiling water over the tea and let steep for at least 5 minutes. Drink hot!


Mint + Lavender + Fennel Seed Tea

  • boiling water to fill one mug
  • 1/2 - 1 tsp loose leaf mint leaves
  • 1/2 tsp lavender buds
  • 1/2 tsp fennel seeds

Place the mint, lavender, and fennel seeds in a mug or tea strainer (in a mug). Pour boiling water over the tea and let it steep for at least 5 minutes. Enjoy your cozy sips! <3

Turmeric Spiced Coconut Milk Soup w/ Potato + Spinach // Our Trip To Gatineau

This weekend felt both like a dream of wild colours and new places & like the adventuring reality I have been longing for. On Saturday morning Sebastian and I took the bus from Montreal to Ottawa. Amid the hazy greyness and drizzling skies, we filled ourselves with hot drinks and headed across the river towards Gatineau. 

The feeling of being somewhere completely new and unknown is something I love. Seeing everything for the first time is an experience that is so unique and really only happens once in each place. Your eyes drink everything in while simultaneously knowing you are missing so much. It almost isn't about that though; not about seeing everything and knowing it on a map, but about the feeling you get when you walk through the streets and immerse yourself as best you can. 

We stayed at a beautiful airbnb that was a 5 minute walk from Gatineau Park. Our hosts were a lovely couple - both retired school teachers - who told us stories from their adventures and gave us maps and trails to follow into the park. On that first day, still damp from the rain and sleepily excited, we ventured out on foot into the very tip of the park. As we took our first few steps onto the trail, the clouds swept across the sky revealing steely blue overhead and a bright, warming sun. 

Walking through the park that first day was the beginning of an adventure. We found a secluded lake and walked about an hour and a half in before turning around to get some sleep for the night.

The next day we took the free shuttle into the park and up to Pink Lake. It was breathtaking. We walked along the lake trail and then slowly made our way back through the park, opting for the long and meandering journey on foot, rather than take the shuttle back into town. 

I always find it hard to capture natural beauty in photographs. Even though the trip was specifically for my photography project, I found myself constantly struggling to translate any of what I was experiencing into the images I was making. So often, I find my camera pointing down to the earth. Somehow, capturing the landscape view with the horizon line, lake, and trees doesn't do any of it justice. The solid earth underfoot and small details of the lake are what I tend to gravitate towards, and through the lens of my camera they are otherworldly. 

Monday found me journeying into the park alone. Sebastian set out to Ottawa to get some work done in a cafe, so I packed up my bag with apples and energy bars and hit the trails. This time, I took the shuttle further into the park, heading towards the Mackenzie King Estate area. With my phone turned off and all music devices stored away in my bag, I just let my feet take me where they wanted to go. 

Alone on the trails that day, I really registered the joy that these experiences bring to me. I am the happiest when I am out adventuring, exploring new places, and most importantly walking forever onwards among the trees and pathways. I've decided that in May 2017 I want to take a walking trip through Gatineau Park. I would start in Gatineau near Hull, and make my way through the park on foot until I reached Wakefield. There is so much more planning to come, and details to be worked out, but knowing that I have this adventure ahead of me can sustain my wandering heart for another few months. 

Well. Thank you if you're still here reading this, you are a star <3

The photos to come were all taken on my iPhone. The quality isn't the best, but I really wanted to share something while I wait for my film to be developed at the lab. Hopefully I can share the finished project with you all here in the coming months. Lots of love and wild adventuring to you all! xo

Finally, this soup.

I won't keep you here long, but while I was away I kept dreaming of warm, filling soups and stews. This is a simple and nourishing recipe. The richness of the coconut milk mingles with the spices and substantial potato to bring a flavourful pot full of goodness. 

I love full flavours in almost every dish, and this certainly brings its fair share to the table. The turmeric shines through the coconut milk and potatoes to give this soup an earthy and grounded feel to it. There is a slight heat from the chili powder balanced nicely by the creamy texture of the soup, and a burst of fruity pomegranate seeds for variance and light. It all comes together in about 30 minutes and is really perfect for the coming autumn chill. 

I am so swept up in exploration right now! I want to hear all about what you are doing! Where have you been, what do you dream of doing? Let's all share our stories around this warming pot of spiced, creamy soup <3 

turmeric spiced coconut milk soup w/ potato + spinach

Serves four



  • 2 large russet potatoes, diced
  • 1 cup packed spinach
  • 1 large onion, julienned 
  • 1 tsp coconut oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tsp dried turmeric powder
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 1/2 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1/2 tsp pepper 
  • 1/4 tsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp salt (more or less to taste)
  • 1 can full fat coconut milk (400 ml) 
  • 4 cups water
  • Optional: Pomegranate seeds and turmeric to serve



Heat 1 tsp coconut oil in a large soup pot over medium-low heat. Once the pot is heated add in the onions and cook until wilted and translucent, about 10 minutes (I like to do this slowly so that the onions caramelize a bit).

Next, add in the garlic and spices (except the salt) and stir to form a dry paste. Cook this for another 2 minutes or so and then add in the coconut milk and salt and stir to combine.

Add in the 4 cups of water as well as the diced potatoes and spinach. Bring to a boil and then reduce to an active simmer and cook for 15 - 20 minutes, until the potatoes are soft and a little mushy. 

Either using an immersion or upright blender, purée the soup until smooth. Serve hot dusted with additional turmeric powder and sprinkled with a generous handful of pomegranate seeds. Should keep in the fridge for up to a week, or frozen for about a month. 

Toasted Coconut + Dark Chocolate Buckwheat Granola

Yesterday morning Sebastian and I packed up some cinnamon bread loaf and biked over to the mountain for a quick walk up and around. It was so beautiful. The trees are just beginning to turn and the air has that crisp catch to it, where you can almost see your breath as you exhale. I love just walking, no real purpose or place to be, just a stroll with someone who's company you love and it all flows so naturally. Sebastian and I always agree that we have the most interesting conversations/ new ideas while we're walking places together. There is some magic in the slowness of it all, in the lack of destinations and time commitments. 

Even though I know that I am the happiest outdoors walking around and moving my body, I seem to have gotten caught in the trap of almost entire days inside the apartment. I really HATE the feeling of realizing it's 8pm and I've only left the house once to go grab some groceries or walk around the block. I think because I am taking less classes I rarely have a specific reason to leave the house each day, which somehow morphs into not leaving at all. UGH. Any tips? What do you do as motivation/ reminders to get up and moving?

Our walk this morning made me even more excited for this coming weekend (talked about in this post). We are going to spend all day just exploring and hiking trails, hopefully cozying up with some hot drinks and warm blankets in the evening. 

I have my first exam of the semester on Friday (in nutrition), but I do think my obsessive flash-card-making-project has paid off. It's funny to be writing a multiple choice exam because really the only exams I've taken so far are English exams which involve reading response and analysis type questions. Anyways, wish me luck!

Oh! If you're curious about how my weekend in Gatineau goes I'll be sharing videos and pics on my instagram story, so you should definitely follow along @spiceandsprout <3 <3 <3

This granola! Well, let me say first that I am so surprised that this is the first granola recipe I've ever shared. I will be honest and say that while I love (LOVE) granola, I am very much a steel cut oats in the morning type person. I really need my big bowl of warm, cinnamon and tahini filled steel cut oats to start the day off right. 

This is definitely a breakfast recipe, but it is also a mid-afternoon snack recipe, and ALSO an after dinner treat recipe (and possibly even a wake up at 3am and need some chocolate type recipe). Catch my drift? Personally, I love a sweet granola snack sometime around mid-afternoon when I start to loose energy. Sebastian on the other hand will scarf a bowl of this chocolatey goodness with his morning mug of coffee, so really to each their own :)

I was feeling a little uninspired (read: lazy) this past week and I couldn't really decide what to make for the blog. Then somehow, as ideas are want to do, this little recipe popped into my mind fully formed. I think it went something like Sebastian asking me to pick him up pears from the grocery store and then it all sort of tumbled into my brain with the chocolate a last minute (but NECESSARY) addition. 

Anyways, enough rambling. What I am really saying is that this is a fairly inexpensive and completely satisfyingly delicious granola recipe. It's hard to beat the toasted coconut and chocolate combo, and with crispy maple roasted oats and buckwheat groats, I think it's fair to say this is a keeper. 

I'd love to know if you try this out. Shoot me a message or tag me in your instagram if you make it to let me know how it goes! xo 

toasted coconut + dark chocolate buckwheat granola

Makes approximately 3 1/2 - 4 cups

I love to eat this granola with a good splash of cashew milk and some sliced pears, but really any sort of plant milk/ fruit combination will be good here. I can definitely see getting down with some vegan coconut yogurt and sliced plums <3 <3 <3



  • 2 cups rolled oats
  • 1 cup buckwheat groats
  • 1/2 cup coconut flakes
  • 1/2 cup pumpkin seeds
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • pinch of salt
  • 1/3 cup maple syrup
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil
  • 50g chopped dark chocolate (half of a regular chocolate bar)



Preheat the oven to 300. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside. 

In a large bowl mix together the oats, buckwheat, coconut flakes, pumpkin seeds, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt. Add the maple syrup and coconut oil to a small saucepan and put it on over medium heat, stirring until just melted. Remove from heat and pour into the bowl of dry ingredients. Mix together until incorporated and spread granola mix evenly onto the baking sheet. 

Bake for 30 - 35 minutes until golden brown, stirring halfway through. Let cool for about 15 minutes before adding in the chopped chocolate. I like to add the chocolate while the granola is still slightly warm so that it melts onto the oats and buckwheat, but if you prefer separate pieces of chocolate you can wait until it cools completely. 

Should keep in an airtight container at room temperature for about two weeks - it can last longer but it won't stay as fresh (ANDDD lets be real, there is NO WAY it will possibly last that long without being eaten (!!!) ). 

Smokey Lemon Paprika Fries w/ Creamy Miso Dipping Sauce

This post was created in partnership with Amano Foods

When this colder weather comes I inevitably turn towards stories, fiction, other worlds to get lost in. I wonder sometimes if this need for the familiar and the fantasy is a lack on my part, that I don't feel comfortable inside my own brain world and so I seek out others. It's almost enticing to believe this, a sense of complete nostalgia and safety will always be there to blanket my mind if I need it, but I don't think it is really true. 

I think it's all about learning other brains, new brains, different spaces and lives that exist and can open up a million trillion facets of my own self to get lost in. It is a reminder of how small and how large every human is - not that this is something I ever think I will be able to comprehend, but it plants seeds and little twinkling explosions of thought that reverberate and bump into old, new, and just forming ideas. 

Sometimes I like to think about ideas, floating like transient objects through the world that are nudged and prodded until they're picked up and examined. And sometimes I like to think that my thoughts are all my own, which I know they can not possibly be. I don't know! 

I am heading to Gatineau in a couple of weeks to take photographs for a final project. I'll talk about it more when I get back, but it is based around a kind of walking meditation and an absence of direction or intentional actions. I am looking to get lost in my own mind while keeping it wide open to the new space around me. We will see how it goes. I'll tell you all about it. 

I've been re-listening to Harry Potter on audiobook because it is my forever comfort world to get lost in, and playing Taylor Swift while making batches and batches of no-bake cookies (my fave recipe ever). I feel good, cozy, vibrant, and always a little unsure. 

So, I made fries because they are warm and delicious and always a reliable source of goodness. 

Another delicious and comforting thing? This creamy miso dipping sauce. 

I am really excited to share this today, not only because the fries are so GOOD and everyone should make them, but also because this dipping sauce is now a forever addition to my fries, just amazing! 

I've never been a fan of mayo (to be honest I really dislike it) but I've always felt like I was missing out on the creamy french fry dipping option. Don't get me wrong I love ketchup, but it can get a little old, ya know? 

This sauce was born out of my partnership with Amano Foods. I've worked with Amano before and loved creating dishes inspired by their amazing products, but I think this dipping sauce is a recipe where Amano's Shiro Miso really takes the stage and shines. The salty umami of the miso gives it a deep, textured undertone while the tahini makes the whole thing come together into a creamy dreamy sauce. 

I love the versatility of working with miso, and the unexpected pop it can give to a dish. I always have a container of Amano's miso in my fridge, and most of my sauces seem to incorporate it in some way (I am totally addicted!). 

The fries. I almost forgot! Look, if the fact that they were all gone about five minutes after I put my camera down doesn't convince you, then I'll elaborate. They are smokey sweet, just a little salty, popping with bursts of lemon, and crispy as can be. Pure bliss and perfection with every bite (not even exaggerating). I think I finally got it down, this home-baked fry thing, and I am never turning back. 

I'd love so much if you gave this recipe a try! You can tag me on instagram @spiceandsprout or send me a message to let me know how it went. Lots of love and hugs and cozy french fry days <3 

smokey lemon paprika fries w/ creamy miso dipping sauce

Serves 2 - 3 (honestly Sebastian and I DEVOURED these right after I finished shooting and had no trouble eating them all, but some of you might have a little more self restraint ;) ) 

I find that the sauce is pretty much perfect for the amount of fries here, so if you make more fries, also double the sauce recipe! 

This post is sponsored by Amano Foods. All opinions are my own and I think that their products and company are totally awesome! 



Smokey Lemon Paprika Fries

  • 2 large russet potatoes, scrubbed
  • 3 tbsp sunflower oil (or other vegetable oil)
  • 1/2 tsp salt 
  • 1/2 tsp pepper
  • 1/2 tsp smoked paprika 
  • 1/2 tsp lemon zest
  • plus a squeeze of lemon after they are baked

Creamy Miso Dipping Sauce

  • 2 tbsp shiro miso (or your favourite miso)
  • 2 tbsp tahini 
  • juice of 1/2 lemon 
  • 1 tsp honey or maple syrup
  • 1/4 tsp smoked paprika 



Preheat the oven to 450 and line a baking tray with parchment paper.

Slice the potatoes into thin (about 1/4 inch) fries. Toss the fries with seasoning and oil in a bowl and then lay them out on the prepared baking sheet. Bake in the oven for 35 - 45 minutes, flipping halfway through. The baking time really depends on your oven, so check them at the 35 minute mark and take them out once they are golden brown and crispy. 

To make the sauce whisk together all of the ingredients until creamy and smooth. 

Serve hot. Squeeze some fresh lemon over the fries, sprinkle some smoked paprika, dip a fry into the sauce, and thoroughly enjoy the amazing experience! 

Roasted Chickpea + Mushroom Veggie Bowls w/ Wild Rice

The days are fluctuating between late summer and early fall, never quite settling into either position. I like the variance, but really I am just craving those crisp fall days where I get to wear jean jackets and scarves. The leaves are beginning to turn, and I am once again awed by the golden fierceness of the trees as they begin to change. 

This is my last semester of school - of my undergraduate degree. It is funny, because as I've probably told you I'm studying photography in school and my degree will ultimately be a BFA. In this very last semester however, two out of three of my classes are science related. I am so excited! 

In the past year or so, my interests have shifted. It's not that I don't want to continue to create and study art, because it is still such a huge part of who I am. My education in fine arts and english literature has been amazing in so many ways, and I wouldn't trade it if I could go back. The thing is, I allowed myself to open up and think hard about what I really wanted to be learning. I know that somewhere in the back of my mind I've always been interested in biology and bodies, nutrition, anatomy etc. but I never took it seriously in school because I had some rigid idea/mantra that I was an english student, not a science student. Where does that even come from? 

Now though, I am finally following what I want to do. I am taking an introductory biology class and a fundamental nutrition course. I know that everything I am learning is very basic, but I really feel like I've found the thing that I am excited about! It's been a long time since I actually looked forward to reading a textbook - sorry, I mean I've NEVER looked forward to reading a textbook. Until now. 

I just can't get over how cool it all is! Seriously, when you start getting down to a microscopic level and looking at atoms and molecules and the structures of cells, the world changes. Of course I knew about all these things before this class (AHEM high school science...) but studying it now is making me look at everything in a new light. 

It is still really the beginning, only the third week of classes, but I am looking forward to sharing my progress in these new classes with all of youuuu :) Is there something you've always wanted to study, but haven't? Or are there some of you that began pursuing other passions later on in school/ life? I want to hear about it all <3 

Just a quick side note, but I really wanted to share this post that Renee of Will Frolic For Food wrote about her #realdietstory and being in the #exvegansclub. I don't know if I have all the words to respond to it in a full and meaningful way, but I think she is such an amazing lady and I am so inspired by her honesty. Food is such a controversial topic, and to be able to express everything she did is really amazing. Go check it out, and lots of hugs to anyone who relates <3 <3 <3 

Alsoooo just generally check out her blog because it is awesome and I am obsessed! 

This recipe! I hope you're not bored of my rambles yet... Heh. 

I've been making this roasted chickpea/mushroom dish a lot lately, and I thought it was time to share its deliciousness. It was kind of a mistake the first time I made it/ me just being really lazy. I didn't want to fry up the mushrooms separately and risk having another dish to wash (!!!) so I just threw them in with the chickpeas and popped the whole thing in the oven. Voila! Pure magic.

The earthy taste of the mushrooms totally envelops the chickpeas so that when you take a bite it is a warm, creamy, spiced to perfection little explosion. The chickpeas really take on a mushroomy taste, in the best possible way. I could honestly just eat the chickpeas and mushrooms on their own and be happy, but I decided I'd better make a real meal out of it for you folks :)

The asparagus was a last minute addition because it looked so perfect at the store, I knew I had to add it in. I love the way the balsamic caramelizes the asparagus, so that it is crispy and a little sweet when it comes out of the oven. The cherry tomatoes add a juicy splash of freshness, and the spinach and rice a grounding base. 

This is so simple, and everything can be made while the rice is cooking. Let me know if you give it a try! <3 

roasted chickpea + mushroom veggie bowls w/ wild rice

Serves Two

I decided to go with a simpler sauce for this recipe because of the amazing flavour brought out by roasting the vegetables. If you want something more complex than drizzled tahini, I recommend the sauce from this recipe!

I love wild rice in this recipe because it has a deep, nutty flavour. However, if you already have cooked grains in the fridge or prefer to use a different type of rice, feel free to use what you have on hand. 



Roasted Veggies + Chickpeas

  • 1/2 bunch thin stemmed asparagus, trimmed (olive oil, balsamic, salt + pepper to season)
  • 1 can (540 ml) chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 4 - 5 large cremini mushrooms, thinly sliced
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1/4 tsp chili powder
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • salt + pepper 

To Serve

  • 1/2 cup wild rice, throuroughly rinsed
  • handful of spinach per bowl
  • 10 heirloom cherry tomatoes, sliced lengthwise 
  • drizzled tahini 



Preheat the oven to 400. Combine 1/2 cup wild rice and 1 1/2 cups water in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil and then reduce to a simmer, cooking covered for 40 minutes, or until tender and done. Remove from heat when done and fluff with a fork, then let sit covered for another 10 minutes.  

Toss the asparagus with apprx. 1 tbsp olive oil and balsamic, salt + pepper to taste. Lay it out on a baking tray so that each piece is flat on the tray. Toss the chickpeas and mushrooms together with cumin, chili powder, olive oil, salt + pepper. Place on a baking tray or other non-stick pan (I used an 8x8 baking dish because I only have one tray). Roast the asparagus in the oven for 10 minutes, and the chickpeas/mushrooms for 25, tossing halfway through to make sure they don't stick. 

To serve place the rice, spinach, cherry tomatoes, roasted asparagus, and chickpeas and mushrooms into each bowl. Drizzle desired amount of tahini over each bowl (I like to add more when I am halfway through the bowl). Serve immediately! 

Pumpkin Spiced Whiskey Hot Chocolate // And A Party!

pumpkin & peanut butter's virtual bridal shower! <3 

We are celebrating Liz's bridal shower! Every recipe (or virtual party snack as I like to call them) features either pumpkin or peanut butter, two of Liz's favourite foods. Over the past year, I've followed along with Liz's blog and all of her beautiful creations - seriously, if you've never been to her blog you have to check it out, I find so much inspiration from her recipes and photography! I love reading her anecdotes about being a teacher, the awesome food adventures she has, her PUPPY, anddddd her upcoming wedding! I feel so lucky to call Liz a friend, and love that we all get to celebrate with her in this online space. The amazing ladies Alexa of Fooduzzi and Lucia of The Food Wright put this whole thing together, and I couldn't be more excited to join in the party!

Community and food have always gone hand in hand for me. I have such fond memories of the times I've spent with family and friends in the kitchen - chatting over glasses of wine, sneaking spoonfuls of soup from the pot on the stove, laughing about life, and sharing stories. In a way, this food blogging community can feel like the biggest and most eclectic potluck/ kitchen party I've been to, with people sharing every dish imaginable and telling the kind of stories that make you feel close to someone you've never met. This virtual party is such a good example of the friendships that are made, even through the computer screen. It is pretty cool that we come together as a community to support our friends from such distances. I feel so lucky to be a part of it all.

So, lets all raise a glass (or really a mug of this pumpkin spiced whiskey hot chocolate) to Liz! Congratulations to you and Nate, I can't wait to follow along on the adventures <3 


virtual bridal shower // virtual snacks!

Fooduzzi - Homemade Pumpkin Spice Peanut Butter

The Food Wright - Pumpkin Spice Quinoa Granola 

Fork in the Kitchen - Pumpkin Spice Baked Brie 

Nourished The Blog - Gluten-Free Baked Pumpkin Donuts

Nommable - Honey Apple Peanut Butter Tart

Joy Food Sunshine - Mini Vegan Pumpkin Pies (No-Bake) 

While trying to brainstorm ideas for Liz's shower, I knew that I wanted to focus on the cozy aspect of the coming months. I think there are some people who try to hold on to the tail end of summer - stretch out those gleaming days as long as possible before submitting themselves to the bundled layers and crisp autumn air. 

I fully embrace it. Fall is one of my favourite times in the year. It is the perfect balance between bright golden sunshine and the crisp, cool breeze on skin. There is something about feeling warm in cold places that just can't be compared. I love to leave the windows open at night and cuddle deep into my blankets while I breathe in the cold, fresh air. A feeling I readily await all summer long to experience. 

Following along with the cozy indulgence of fall, I thought I would make some kind of pumpkin peanut butter truffle. Maybe balls of honey sweetened peanut butter, rolled in spiced pumpkin, and dipped into a smooth velvety dark chocolate? Or possibly some kind of maple roasted pumpkin with sage leaves, caramelized onions, and toasted walnuts. Mmmmm. See? I think autumn is going to be pretty great. 

Finally though, I settled on a drink because what is more comforting than a warm, frothy, spiced (and spiked) mug of hot chocolate? The whiskey was a last minute addition, but let me tell you, it totally makes the drink! Of course, if you are making this for children, or if you prefer not to consume alcohol, the pumpkin spiced hot chocolate on its own is still amazing. Butttt, for that extra little high vibey goodness, I'd definitely recommend boozing it up ;) 

Big cyber hugs out to everyone who made this happen, and lots of love over to Liz! Congrats, girl <3 

pumpkin spiced whiskey hot chocolate

Make one mug full - can easily be doubled <3



  • 1 cup unsweetened coconut milk (or other plant milk)
  • 1/2 cup water (or more plant milk)
  • 2 tbsp cocoa powder
  • 2 tbsp pure pumpkin purée
  • 2 tbsp whiskey 
  • 1/2 - 1 tbsp honey (maple syrup or agave if vegan)
  • 1 tsp coconut oil
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/4 tsp ground cloves
  • pinch of salt



Heat the coconut milk and water in a small saucepan over medium heat. Let it come to a simmer but not boil, then remove from heat and pour into an upright blender. Add all of the ingredients to the blender and blend on high for about 30 seconds, or until smooth and combined. Serve hot!