Things I’m Loving Lately: Tea and Trail Mix
So after cleaning my booty off over the weekend, I thought I was going to whip-up a delectable, gluten-free strawberry cupcake storm in the kitchen.
Aww, they look so cute, right?
They were awful.
Not only did they stick to the paper liners but they were mushy inside. Not moist…MUSHY.
Sigh…it was an utter gluten-free fail.
Really, I don’t have any issues with gluten so I don’t know why I wanted to make them gluten-free. I guess it’s because I’ve noticed a lot of people are trying to avoid it so I thought it would be good to create something for the gluten-haters out there but gluten-free baking is tricky stuff! Anyway, today’s post was originally going to be about strawberry cupcakes with vegan whipped cream icing but all I have are pictures of FAILURE.
That’s okay, you win some, you lose some. Instead, I am going to share with you a few of my favorite things. Like to hear it? Here it go…
I am not a soda, pop, coke or whatever-you-like-to-call-it drinker. I try to drink mostly water everyday because I LOVE CAKE! Whoa…sorry. Really though, I much rather eat my calories in the form of dessert than drink a Coke, that’s just how I roll. But water can get a little boring sometimes so I try to mix things up with unsweetened tea. Recently, I found Sunburst Green Tea which has a light citrus flavor, as well as the Black Ginger Peach tea and let me tell you, they both are SO good. I have a large glass pitcher that I fill with water, microwave for 8 minutes, then let the bags steep for a few hours on the counter before refrigerating the pitcher. Then I have tea to take to work for the week. Much better than soda!
#2 Trader Joe’s Happy Trekking Trail Mix
Trail mix and myself are one dangerous combination. I could seriously continue to dump the stuff into my mouth and chew my way through the whole bag within 10 minutes. If the first or second mouthful doesn’t have a piece of chocolate, I have to keep trying until I get a piece. Am I the only one who does this?
#3 Wallaby’s Organic Greek Yogurt
My previous yogurt addiction is now being trumped by this. It has a little bit of fat which makes it perfectly creamy and slightly less tangy than the Oikos. However, the container is a little too small to mix chia seeds into and the sugar content is higher than the Oikos vanilla. But it is nice to mix up the rotation here and there.
#4 Juilen Farel’s Restore Hair Treatment
I tend to get major celebrity hair envy and am often on the lookout for what the secret is to obtaining such satiny locks. Of all the tips, tricks and products I see, the most common advice is to not do anything to your hair at all. Don’t blow dry, curl, flat iron or put any kind of gunk in it. Just go au naturel as often as possible. So during the week, you will find me looking like I stuck my finger in a socket, hiked through the rainforest and then slept in a wind tunnel.
As you can imagine, I was not about to stop there with my attempt to get celebrified hair. I am kind of obsessed fond of Olivia Palermo’s hair and decided to research what she uses for her gorgeous strands. Do you guys remember her from that show, The City? Ahhh, MTV garbage television- good stuff. Anyways, I discovered that Olivia goes to Julien Farel salon in New York and that he makes this hair treatment that is supposed to restore your hair to it’s virgin state. It is also produced through processes that limit or eliminate harmful toxins (good for the environment) and it doesn’t test on animals. Sold!
It’s recommended to use once a week by massaging it into the scalp prior to showering and then to follow by rinsing it out without using shampoo or conditioner. After I use it, I immediately notice that my hair looks much healthier and shinier. I also feel like it’s renewing my scalp in between washing and gives it a nice break from regular shampoos. I have had the same bottle for almost eight months so I definitely haven’t been using it every week, and I honestly don’t think it’s ever going to make my hair look like Olivia Palermo’s, but it seems to work great and I hope to try and use it more regularly to see the long-term effects.
#5 Yes to Cucumbers Eye Makeup Remover Pads
I had been a long time user of Vaseline to remove my eye makeup until I read an article (actually, several) that raise the question of possible carcinogens in petrolatum. There is no hard evidence one way or the other at this point, but my severe paranoia set in so I went looking for an alternative product to remove my makeup. So far, I really like how gentle and convenient these pads are. Plus, they are made with mostly natural ingredients which I love.
Bob’s Red Mill GF Pizza Crust flour works great for muffin recipes! I use it is carrot muffins and they turn out perfect every time!
Thanks so much for the tip Jessy! I’ve tried the Bob’s Red Mill GF corn bread mix and love it so I’ll have to check out the pizza crust flour too. I would have never thought to use it for muffins!
I once was considering attempting to make a gluten-free carrot cake from scratch for my friend who is gluten intolerant, and then I saw the huge list of ingredients that required, and I decided to buy one instead. :P
I did try to go gluten-free for a while though I don’t have any particular sensitivities against gluten, but then I realized I like bread and pastries too much to give them up. Plus, it just lead to me binging on the bread/pastries, so I went back to eating normally.
Wallaby organic is SO good. I switched to buying their yogurt after I decided that Siggi’s price wasn’t worth it anymore. (If you haven’t tried Siggi’s Icelandic yogurt yet, you should. It’s my favorite. But it is pretty expensive.)
I know, I could never give up gluten. I feel for those who have to. I haven’t tried Siggi’s before but maybe I’ll splurge on one to try it out!
Lol, those muffins looked so good in the tray! Aw what a let down. I tend to go full gluten when I bake, just because it’s what I’m comfortable with, but I’ve been wanting to try some gluten-free recipes lately. And thanks for the hair tip- I don’t even know what to do with my hair at this point, so I think some back to basics revitalizing might be just what it needs! Have a great weekend :)
It was my first time attempting gluten-free baking so I’m sure it gets easier with time. Hope you have a great weekend too! :)
Such a bummer the muffins didn’t work out! They looked really could while they were still in muffin pan. I hate when stuff like that happens! I do try to eat gluten free as much as I can, but they’re certain thinks I just can’t give up…like my kashi granola cereal! :-)
It was disappointing but life goes on! ;) Gluten is so hard to give up, I don’t think I could unless I absolutely had to!
That trail mix sounds amazing!! However, if I purchased that I would likely eat the entire bag in one sitting! ;)
It is amazing! I have been trying my best to savor it! ;)
I’m totally with you on preferring to eat my calories rather than to drink them! Unless it comes to a soy latte… but that is a rare treat and to me it is a dessert ;) I actually had a GF baking success last night! My only blogger fail was that I forgot to photograph it… I’ll have to make them again this weekend so I can share the recipe with everyone because it was delicious!
Ooh, I am excited to see what you made! I’m glad one of us success without gluten! ;)
Awwr sorry to hear about the baking fail! I hate it when that happens. Gluten-free baking can definitely be tricky – I don’t think I’ve ever really quite gotten it right. Thankfully I don’t have a problem with gluten and don’t have to avoid it. And I usually prefer to eat my calories as well – unless we’re talking cappuccinos… I’m more than willing to drink those :D
I have been trying to eat a little less gluten after a few discussions with my doctor about my stomach problems. I don’t avoid it but it there is a simple GF substitution I will usually make it. I prefer to eat my calories, I think its more satisfying. In terms of drinking calories I like to make my smoothies into thick smoothie bowls so its more like eating than drinking and will never turn down a good coffee drink.
sorry about the muffins lady! on a lighter note I too am obsessed with the TJ’s trail mix. Can’t get enough!
I loved The City when it was on even more than The Hills :) I love all Olivia’s outfits not just her hair. That hair treatment sounds amazing.
Sorry about your baking fail. I’ve just been told I need to avoid wheat as much as possible.
I definitely prefer to eat my calories than drink them.
Bummer about the cupcakes!! And I need to get my hands on that makeup remover! I love using pads instead of a cream!
That TJ’s trail mix is my favorite! I was just considering making the “trek” out there to get some today!
Haha, yes, it is certainly worth the “trek”. ;)