winter sangria

winter sangria

This post was created in partnership with Dagoba. All opinions are our own.

This year we spent Thanksgiving in Portland, Oregon. It was a treat being in a place that actually experiences rain, and where fall actually feels like fall. Ryan’s parents like to poke fun at us wimpy Californians who overpack our suitcases with thermal underwear, wool socks, and snow hats—ready to brave those bone-chilling 50-degree temperatures. Yes, we may have been the only ones wearing thick arctic coats and heavy ski gloves strolling around downtown Portland in November, but we’re from Southern California where it’s summer year-round, and not used to this strange phenomenon known as “seasons.” Regardless, we had a great trip, enjoyed the crisp Oregon air, and welcomed two new dishes to the holiday table: a simple and sweet carrot soufflé, and a brussels sprout and caramelized leek gratin. Both dishes were an instant hit, and both will be making repeat appearances next year. Much of our time was spent in the kitchen preparing for Thanksgiving, and with the holidays continuing throughout the month, we know how much work goes into throwing a party, so today we are sharing something incredibly easy for all your entertaining needs: a light, bubbly, and refreshing winter cocktail that—like so many things in life—pairs beautifully with a bar of high-quality dark chocolate.

who says that sangria is only for summertime?
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roasted garlic sourdough knots with pecorino

roasted garlic sourdough knots with pecorino

Please excuse our dancing. We do have a good reason: it’s now the middle of autumn and we haven’t seen a drop of rain for months… so we figured we’d try something—anything—to bring forth some much-needed water from the sky for our poor dehydrated city. Hopefully this rain dance will work, and our plants will finally be restored from their pathetically drooping, shriveled state to plump green leaves, bursting with moisture. While we await that day, we’ve been pretending like it’s autumn by playing rainfall sounds as our background music, keeping the air conditioning below 55, and closing all the shades to make the house dark and wintry. We will get our autumn one way or another, and this simulation method seems to be working. We may look peculiar wearing snow hats and sweaters inside our kitchen as we cook, but with the gentle sounds of raindrops from our speakers and frosty air blowing from our A/C, we are now ceremonially set for soup season. Bring on the hoppin’ john, bring on the hot nutella, and let’s get this party started.

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stir-fry veggie lettuce wraps with ginger-garlic tofu

stir-fry veggie lettuce wraps with ginger-garlic tofu

This post was created in partnership with Taylor Farms. All opinions are our own.

One question we are often asked is how we stay so skinny. We may share lots of desserts here on the blog, but we also try to keep the recipes balanced between the sweet autumnal cocktails and cookies that continue to make appearances in our somewhat-balanced household. All kidding aside, it is a combination of factors: heredity (you should see how thin our moms are), hiking, and taking time to eat healthy. Our dinners for the past few months have consisted of mountains of roasted vegetables, sautéed greens, quinoa, and tofu prepared a hundred and sixteen ways. We have been extra creative in the kitchen, experimenting with different techniques to prepare our produce and we have been thrilled with the results. The only downside is it can take a while: when you’re in a hurry and don’t have time to cut and peel loads of sweet potatoes and beets then wait a half-hour while they cook in the oven, you need a quicker—but still healthy—alternative. So we created a delicious and easy weeknight dinner that takes less than fifteen minutes from start to finish, and we’re excited to share it with you today.

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kauai recap: a week in paradise

the breathtaking na pali coastline, from the kalalau trail

This post was created in partnership with The Westin Princeville Ocean Resort Villas. All opinions are our own.

Every time we visit Kauai, we seriously consider moving there. Don’t get us wrong, we love our house and garden here in Eagle Rock, but there’s something enchanting about the idea of living in the tropics—just steps away from the beach, with ocean breezes blowing through our hair as we sip coconuts, eat fresh pineapples, and watch the waves all day. We’ve been home for just over a week and already dreaming about our next trip.

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pumpkin chocolate chip cookies

pumpkin cocolate chip cookies

So we mayyy have stayed out a little too late last night. And we mayyy have had a few too many drinks considering that today was a show day. But we do have a good excuse! Last night, we attended a fun foodie event hosted by The Feedfeed and Simply Organic, held at the magical Hedley and Bennett headquarters in Vernon, California about 30 minutes from our home. As we arrived, each guest was handed an envelope containing a unique spice—Ryan’s was filled with dried rosemary, and Adam’s packet had bright yellow curry powder. Everyone split up into groups according to the ingredient they received, and together we all cooked an epic meal! There were half a dozen stations set up with electric stovetops, food processors, and freshly prepped ingredients, and each group was responsible for a different course. It was great to meet new people in the community and bond with them while making dinner together: Adam’s group prepared a delicious curried butternut squash soup, while Ryan’s table mixed up a creamy hummus topped with rosemary-balsamic roasted carrots. There were over a hundred other bloggers in attendance, and there was plenty of food and wine for everyone. Plus, there mayyy have been an after-party (complete with Zombies) in the Tiki lounge at Clifton’s with our friends Christine, Becky, and Tommy, meaning we didn’t get home until well after midnight. Even though we stayed in bed till ten o’clock this morning and our Gravy live show, Mix It Up With Husbands That Cook started at 11am, we made it just in time. The episode from this morning is now archived on our show page, so you’ll be able to see our performance—despite the fact that a few hours prior, we were in no shape to host a live cooking show. But the episode was a success! Not only did Sylvia make a surprise guest appearance (we cleared it with her agent first), but we whipped up a batch of these melt-in-your-mouth pumpkin chocolate chip cookies that just so happen to be vegan as well. Perfect for all your Halloween parties, please meet your new go-to fall cookie recipe.

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