Leftover Nut Milk Pulp Breakfast Bars


Combat food waste! I need to improve in this area most definitely, but feel I am getting better and experimenting even more in the kitchen.

Leftover nut milk pulp can add up quickly. I’ve made brownies before, which are amazing, but I like change as well.

My goal here was also to use only one pan. Yes, for mixing and for baking. Success!


  • Leftover pulp: 1 – 1.5 cups
  • Oats: 1/2 cup
  • 1 egg
  • Chocolate chips: 1/2 cup
  • Hemp hearts: 1/4 cup
  • Peanut butter: 1/3 cup (that’s all I had, but it would have been nicer with more)
  • Cacao nibs: whatever was on hand which was about 2 TBS
  • Maple syrup: 1/4 cup

Stir all together and press into the pan.


Bake at 350F for about 20 – 30 minutes.


These were pretty good. I ate them for breakfast and for snacks. They were still quite moist, which was interesting. I’d make them again, but I would make sure to add more oats or flour, or squeeze the nut pulp more, or add in a bit of coconut oil. But I am happy to have avoided at least a little bit of food waste!

Peace and love,


Harissa White Bean Stew


Harissa is one of my favorite spice blends. Here, I’ve mixed my own using garlic powder, dried chilies, caraway, coriander, cumin, and salt. I know it is probably most frequently seen as a paste, but I had never tried it in a paste until recently when the local branch of Cost Plus was going out of business and I picked up a few tubes of it. The tubes are metal, so I can recycle them, and the spice is super tasty!

I recently soaked and cooked some small white beans, I think perhaps navy beans, and knew I wanted to turn them into a delicious dish.

The original recipe calls for this to be slow-cooked, but since my beans were already cooked, I chose not to do that, and this dish was ready in about 30 – 40 minutes.

Other than that, I followed the recipe quite closely.

Saute onion, then garlic in butter, then add in harissa and tomato paste.

I do still buy organic cans of tomato paste, but use so little and so infrequently, that I transfer it into a small glass jar and keep in the freezer.

Add in cumin and paprika and stir until fragrant, then deglaze the pan with a few cups of water.

Add in beans, approximately 2 cups, and 2 sliced carrots along with bay leaves, and thyme.

I found the soup to be quite smoky, and it needed more salty flavor, so I added my homemade bouillon, and you may want to as well. Also add additional water if desired.


I let that simmer, then browned some butter and turmeric, about 1 TBS each, then added in some plain yogurt to stir in. A squeeze of lime was needed to top it all! It was very satisfying, and had a depth of flavor that is sometimes difficult to find with soups.

The light through my window was causing rainbows to appear above the stew, so even though you cannot see the contents, I thought it was fun. 🙂


Peace and love,


Caramelized Vegetables and Orzo


This dish should have served 4. But with my husband and I each taking a bite each time we walked through the kitchen, then serving ourselves bowls of it later that same night, it really only served about 2.5. I think we like this dish!

This does not require only one pan, sadly, because I had to first cook the orzo, but this dish uses nearly all my favorite flavors, so it was well worth the 2 pans. So, yes, first cook approximately 1 cup of orzo to al dente then drain and drizzle with some olive oil.

Chop up purple sweet potatoes (they are available locally for me and are HEAVEN), and let those babies sit in some high smoke-point oil in your biggest and heaviest cast iron pan, then add chopped up yellow onions. Yellow are the best! I used what remained from 2 different onions.

Then chop up a few cloves of garlic and let all of that stay in the pan with very little stirring to get BROWN!

Add some grated ginger, stir that up, then chop up brown mushrooms and let those sit on the hot part of the pan.

Once all these delectable vegetables look brown and caramelized, add in a mixture of 1 TBS oil, 2 TBS soy sauce (or Bragg Liquid Aminos), and 1 TBS balsamic vinegar. Stir now and make sure everything gets coated.

Next, start adding in the orzo and continue to stir until even the orzo looks browned and yummy. Then add in your choice of hearty green (kale, chard, spinach) for just a couple minutes. I chose kale. Enjoy!


Recipe tweaked from this one.

Peace and love,


Sourdough Waffles + Zero Waste Classroom Valentine’s Day


Yet another thing to do with leftover sourdough starter! Make waffles to your heart’s content! These are left overnight to get extra tangy, unlike the pancakes I have made, which are mixed together and used immediately. Of course, I use the recipe from The Perfect Loaf, because he is a trusted source on all things sourdough.

This batter made a large amount of waffles; way more than two people can eat, so I froze the remainder, and just plan on popping them into the toaster when I get a desire. I planned on freezing them in my round life without plastic metal container, but they were a teensy bit too big, so I grabbed a washed out, reused plastic bag that I have just for such emergencies.

These are excellent slathered with freshly ground peanut butter and warmed up maple syrup. How convenient that both of those items are readily available in bulk! Even at the local WinCo, I see both of these items. It’s actually funny because I brought a glass jar to WinCo and filled up with peanut butter knowing they don’t accept reusables and just accepted my fate of paying for the weight of the jar, but it still ended up less expensive than a jar of Adam’s peanut butter! It was $3 and some change for a pint.

Maple syrup is not cheap, and I use it sparingly and enjoy every last drop.


I made these on the weekend, because even though they are adorable heart shapes, I did not have any time to make these for my sweetie during the week. Instead I was busy making these for my students.

Want to know what I did for my Kindergartners this Valentine’s Day?

I got the idea to make them breakfast for Valentine’s Day, so I brought in eggs from my hens and a batch of easy waffle dough, not the one pictured, but one that was more simple to mix together in the morning before school. I also brought my waffle iron, huckleberry syrup that I’ve had forever (it’s an Idaho specialty), homemade honey-strawberry jam, and peanut butter. A parent brought cut up strawberries, and another brought clementines.

Every morning, my students go to another teacher for half an hour, so I set about making the waffles and scrambling eggs in a plug-in skillet that I keep at school. It took me almost exactly 30 minutes to make the whole batch, which was about 10 or 11 waffles. I gave the students 2 heart pieces, some scrambled eggs, their topping of choice, and fruit, all in reusable dishes I keep and wash at school. I am fortunate to have 2 sinks in my classroom as well as convenient plug-ins and some counter space.

I had half the class eating from bowls and plates, while the others put together some fun puzzles that kept them engaged. As soon as the first half of the kids were done eating, and I had washed and dried the dishes, I had them switch. It really only took about a half hour for them all to be done. It was fun, easy, and I kept it zero waste.

There were also some heart shaped pretzels for them that were bought in bulk. I tried to ask them to just do a card exchange, but many parents ignored that request and sent in whole class Valentine cards. The kids had fun and didn’t have too much sugar, which was a feat in itself.

Unfortunately, I do not have any pictures of that day because I was honestly rushing around the whole time trying to coordinate everything. Not unusual on a daily basis as my kids are 5 and 6. 🙂

Peace and love,


Rice and Beans: simple and sustainable


A simple dish of rice and beans.

The details are: the beans are Peruano, soaked overnight, cooked with the ends of an onion and the ends of two carrots, plus two bay leaves, and about two teaspoons of salt.

The rice is long grain rice, tossed and heated in some olive oil, then cooked with water, and sprinkled with the juice of a fresh lime and cilantro.

The combination is delightful, especially with some added cumin, salt, and pepper.

All ingredients were bought in bulk or sans packaging, which is exactly what I want from every meal for the remainder of my life. Sadly, that is probably not going to happen.

My husband and I met up with his grandmother so she could see him for his birthday. We met at a Mexican restaurant + grocery store that has tasty food, but it seemed impossible to avoid the plastic cups the salsas came in, plus an unexpected plastic spoon in each of the bean dishes. It was disappointing and I found myself more stressed out about the waste and forcing myself to enjoy my meatless tacos.

I want to be able to ask for the things that are better for the environment, but I don’t want to appear that I am pushing my ideals and morals onto others; especially at a place that traditionally employs and serves an underrepresented and oftentimes disrespected minority population in my town.

So, I didn’t request anything special, except no meat on my tacos.

But this gave me resolve to make even more food at home, cook from ingredients that I know are less wasteful, do not torture animals, and give fair pay for fair work.

This long weekend has been a good representation of that desire. I have made ginger beer, sourdough bread, sourdough starter waffles, harissa white bean stew, lacto-fermented mustard, mayonnaise with my own hen’s egg, rice and beans, and I’m about to make sourdough crackers, tortillas, and feta. I have also sewn a bento bag, sewn up some bean bags from school that were broken, and am currently working on an apron to wear at school to hold all my important flash cards because my students cannot afford to never not be learning in this climate.

Peace and love,



Hummus from Whole Ingredients

I wasn’t sure what to do when my jar of tahini ran out. I was sure I wouldn’t be able to make tahini, and I didn’t want to buy that expensive as hell ingredient made from dirt cheap sesame seeds, nor did I want yet another glass jar.

As it turns out, tahini is quite easy to make. I knew it would be simple, but wasn’t sure if my ninja chopper could handle it. It certainly cannot make nut butters, but other jobs are a dream.

So I lightly roasted some sesame seeds and gave them a whirl in my chopper with a bit of added olive oil. Turns out, my puny chopper can handle this job! There are still visible whole sesame seeds, but it doesn’t bother me at all. The overall effect tastes and feels right. I think sesame seeds are small enough to blend easily and the olive oil helps with the smooth consistency.

To make hummus:

Cooked chickpeas: 1 – 2 cups

Garlic cloves: 1 – 3

Salt: a pinch to a teaspoon

Olive oil: 2 – 3 Tablespoons

Paprika: 1/2 – 1 teaspoon

Cumin: 1/2 – 1 teaspoon

Lemon Juice: 1/2 – 1 lemon

Water: as needed for consistency

Blend all together in appliance of choice for a few minutes, scraping sides as needed and adding water as needed.


Peace and love,


Sourdough Starter Pancakes


A typical breakfast for me is quick and leaning towards healthy. However, on the weekends, I allow a morning of lounging and enjoying a scrumptious, nutritious, yet high-calorie meal.

These pancakes use up any leftover sourdough starter that I have accumulated after making my weekly bread. I’m planning on doing a more thorough sourdough bread post soon!

The ingredients are ones I typically have on hand and, best of all, can be customized.


This batch was made with homemade cashew-almond milk, eggs from my hens, and other store bought ingredients, all available in bulk.

I use this recipe from my favorite sourdough baker.

This time, I left out the yogurt knowing I’d be topping the pancakes with yogurt later.

There is some sugar in the dough, which gives more leeway to add tart toppings, which is just what I did.


Yogurt, homemade cherry jam, and homemade apple butter were chosen for toppings.

The sourdough starter acts not as a leavening, but as a flavor for these delicious treats.

This is one of my favorite ways to combat food waste.

You’ll need

  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup milk of choice
  • 1.5 cups sourdough starter / discard
  • 1.5 cups flour
  • 1 tsp each baking powder, baking soda, and salt
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup melted butter or coconut oil

Mix all ingredients together in 1 bowl to cut down on dishes.

Cook on a hot skillet and enjoy!

Peace and love,


Grapefruit / Pomelo Cleaning Vinegar


One of the recent fresh fruit snacks my students received was pomelo! They were delicious and the kids loved them! I decided I would cut or peel them for everyone so I could save the peels to make cleaning vinegar.

All I did was make sure any pulp was removed and placed as many as could fit into a half gallon mason jar. Then white vinegar was poured over. I’ll let it set on the counter for a couple weeks, then strain and bottle to use for an amazing smelling cleaner! Essentially almost free, yet somewhat fancy.

This works with any citrus peel, and the peels will need to be composted after being removed from the vinegar.

Peace and love,


February Groceries


This is not going to be my entire month’s groceries. When I share pictures of my groceries, it is usually because I just happen to get a photo, or there happens to be natural light available still (I live in the north).

I also do this with hopes that there are ever people who live in my area who want to shop zero waste style and can find inspiration on where to get food.

One of my favorite places to get food is a couple blocks from my house at a Mexican grocery store. They don’t question my cloth bags and I don’t ask them if it’s going to be a problem. I have gotten beans, dried chilies, vegetables, herbs, and even some coconut desserts from there. And I don’t think I ever spent more than $10 at a time.

I went to Cliff’s Country Market specifically to get more half & half and yogurt in returnable bottles. I have been to Cloverleaf Creamery in Buhl, Idaho, and I know that they take care of their cows, but I still feel conflicted over my dairy consumption, which is very minimal I think. I also get my produce there when I can as it is usually local and quite often organic. Their entire store is all about non-GMO products. It’s the best. I wish everything else they had was in bulk bins and I talk to them about it whenever I visit.

Then I drove to my favorite winery to fill up a growler of wine. I figured I might as well get it in bulk because it will stay good in my Klean Kanteen growler.

After that, I stopped a few blocks from my house at a Mexican restaurant to ask for chips and salsa in my stainless steel.

I’ll try and take photos this whole month of any other groceries I buy and list where they came from to help out any local folks. 😉

Peace and love,


Crochet Soap Saver


There’s an untold amount of pleasure experienced by using up all the last bits of something old and getting to use something new. In this case, it’s a bar of soap. I love using bar soap in the bath and shower, and I usually like to get a different type of scent each time I go to buy a new bar. I love cutting my own at my local health and herb shop. I get to smell and touch the soap before purchasing, which is also underrated.

These tiny pieces are difficult to wash with and often get lost in a bathtub. I knew that soap savers existed, but didn’t think it was necessary until this last go around. There are hoards of patterns to be found online. The one I used can be found free of charge here.

Mine did not end up looking like the one pictured, but it will do the job. It can also double as your regular shower scrubby.  I haven’t crocheted in a long time as I have been enjoying knitting more. This was done with 100% USA grown cotton, which is what makes sense for a shower tool.


I can hang it on my ring in the shower to let it dry between uses. I didn’t make it very big because I didn’t want to put a whole piece of soap in there, just scraps.

It honestly took me about an hour to make, and like I said, I am out of practice.

Give it a try if you like, or if you are really interested, leave me a comment and we could arrange something.

Peace and love,