Vegan Cinnamon Rolls

Vegan Cinnamon Rolls

I usually exchange food gifts with a friend. She had one simple request. That simple request was to bake her some vegan cinnamon rolls.

I’ve made many things, but not once did I ever consider making cinnamon rolls, let alone vegan cinnamon rolls.

She gave me a recipe she thought I should try and realized the only thing vegan about the cinnamon rolls was the replacement of butter and milk. Luckily, I already consume a milk substitute, but I had to get introduced to vegan butter.

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Cashew Brittle

I’m obsessed with peanut brittle made by See’s Candies. Each time I go to my local store, the brittle boxes are sold out. My timing obviously isn’t great. Figured I would attempt to make my own brittle. Made it once with my mother…when I was in elementary, so I figured it wouldn’t be that hard :).



1/2 cup white sugar
1/4 cup light corn syrup
1/8 tsp salt
2 tbsp. water
1/2 cup whole or halved cashews (or nuts of your choice)
1 tbsp. butter softened
1/2 tsp baking soda


1. Grease a large cookie sheet and set aside.

2. In a heavy 1 quart saucepan, over medium heat, bring sugar, corn syrup, salt and water to a boil stirring until sugar is dissolved.

3. Stir in cashews. Set candy thermometer in place, and continue cooking. Stir frequently until thermometer temperature reaches 300 degrees F.  If you don’t have a candy thermometer, you can drop a small amount of the mixture into very cold water. If the mixture separates into hard brittle threads, it has reached the “hard crack” candy stage.

4. Remove from heat and immediately stir in butter and baking soda. Do not stir too much. Just until the butter and baking soda is incorporated which won’t take long. Pour the mixture onto the greased cookie sheet. With 2 forks, lift and pull cashew mixture into rectangle (or any shape you can get it into before it cools). Let the mixture cool. Break candy into pieces.

This recipe produces a small batch good enough for one or two people. If you wish to make more, please double or triple the recipe.


I Made Dalgona Coffee Because I’m a Sucker for Java

You may have heard of dalgona coffee via social media. The coffee went viral last week and I decided to give it a try.

Dalgona coffee consists of two tbsps instant coffee (I used Folgers) and equal parts sugar and hot water. I’ve seen some people make it with cold water, but it doesn’t make a difference. Use a hand mixer and mix until the coffee is a whipped cream consistency. If you want it thicker, mix until its a slight mousse texture. Place on top of hot or cold milk (I used almond milk). Feel free to mix together or drink as is. If you enjoy strong lattes, this is for you. If you prefer a light coffee flavor, add more milk.

Dalgona Coffee Shalanjo

Since I don’t have a hand mixer and wasn’t about to whip out my stand mixer for six tbsps of ingredients, I shook everything in a mason jar. Not sure how long it took since I was preparing breakfast while shaking it. It may have taken 15-20 minutes to get it to a whipped consistency. Be prepared for an arm workout.

I enjoyed the dalgona coffee mixed and unmixed. When unmixed, the texture and flavor was a nice compliment to the cold almond milk. A little hard to describe. When mixed together, it becomes a strong latte.

I would only make this again if I had a hand mixer because shaking it in a mason jar isn’t worth the time. Dalgona coffee is purely made for aesthetics and a nice change from regular coffee. Give Starbucks time. They’ll add this to their menu.

Dalgona Coffee Shalanjo2

The History of the Fork

Random word of the day is “fork.”

Did you know the use of a fork was once seen as evil?

The origins of the fork date back to the Eastern Roman Empire of Byzantium but some of the earliest known table forks made their debut in Ancient Egypt. The Qijia, who resided in part of present-day China, also are known to have used forks. The utensil migrated west after Byzantine princess, Theodora Anna Doukaina married the Venetian doge in 1075, brought the utensil to Venice. God-fearing Venetians saw the fork as a monstrosity.

God in his wisdom has provided man with natural forks – his fingers. Therefore it is an insult to Him to substitute artificial metallic forks for them when eating. -St. Peter Damian

split spoon.jpg

In the 16th century during the Italian Renaissance, the popularity of forks began to grow when Catherine de Medici brought along a set of eating forks from her native Florence to France. People also became more aware of hygiene and didn’t want their food covered in filth. Men still preferred to use their fingers as forks were deemed too feminine.

By the 18th century, the upper-class began carrying forks as part of their utensils set. During the industrialization period, the middle and lower-class gained access to the “split spoon.”

In 1633, John Winthrop, a founding father of the Massachusetts Bay Colony received a case of utensils accompanied by a note stating, “for the useful application of which I leave to your discretion.” At this time, the proper use of a fork was still unknown. Once the Americans grew accustomed to the fork, their dining etiquette was critiqued by international users. Everything from how Americans held the fork and whether or not the tines should be facing up or down as you ate the food was a source of controversy.

The popularity of forks blossomed and several variations were created.

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So the next time you use your fork, take a closer look. It had a long journey to become a staple in our lives.


’90s Candy You Probably Forgot About

A friend and I were reminiscing about our childhoods and landed on a lengthy candy conversation. We were naming candies we used to love, forgot about, and wished we had at that moment. When we thought about the sweet treats we used to eat, we quickly realized our teeth should have fallen out a long time ago. Let’s take a walk down memory lane.

**I know some of these still exist and/or were in production before the ’90s.**

Bubble Jug


Remember the powder we shook into our mouth that turned into bubblegum? We already had packs of bubblegum, so why anyone thought it was a good idea to turn it into a powder is beyond me.

Life Savers Holes


Life Savers Gummies already existed, so maybe the company was trying to prevent waste by selling the holes they punched out of the ring gummies. I remember having these a handful of times before they quietly disappeared from stores.



Whenever I could afford these, I considered them an upgrade from Now & Later. THESE were delicious, but my circle of friends would try to sell or swap out the lemon flavor. Why does the lemon flavor always get the bad rap?

Mega Jawbreaker 


The mega jawbreaker never made any sense to me. It took forever to finish a normal jawbreaker. Why would anyone want to buy a mega-size only to lick it for five years? OK, maybe not five years, but you get the point. My friends used to break it into pieces with a hammer.

String Thing

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You were either a Fruit Roll-ups or String Thing fan. String Thing, in my opinion, was long Twizzlers, but with better flavor.

Push Pop Candy

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I told my friend this was the best candy invention ever. The idea that kids were constantly running around playing and needed a candy that could retract back into its packaging and placed in their pocket was amazing.

Now and Later Candy

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These were my go-to! One mini pack cost 25¢ and a long pack cost 50¢. For the longest time, I never knew there was an “and” in the name. I referred to them as Now Laters.

Candy/Bubblegum Cigarettes and Cigars

I remember my first pack of smokes. When you blew into the cigarettes, the sugar would act like smoke. They would never sell these to kids today for obvious reasons. Good thing I knew smoking was bad growing up. I can see how this could have led to kids wanting to smoke. Yikes!

Laffy Taffy

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My mouth watered when I thought of these. If I didn’t have enough money for Now and Laters, Laffy Taffy was my next option. I think they cost about 10¢ a piece.

Sugar Daddy and Sugar Babies

I can go on forever about candy from my childhood, but I’ll end it on this teeth buster. I didn’t eat these that often because the feeling of my teeth being ripped out wasn’t pleasant.

Button Candy

button candy

I’m going to be 100% honest. This had to be one of the dumbest candy ever! The struggle to get a “button” off without peeling the paper was a struggle. I can’t count how many times I either tossed the “button” or ate it with the paper on because I didn’t want to waste candy. To make things worse, they weren’t even good.

If you ate any of these candies as a kid and still have your teeth, kudos! I know I didn’t list every candy. If your childhood favorite isn’t on the list, list yours in the comments.



Random Word Challenge: Bacon

Random Word of the Day: Bacon

I couldn’t help but laugh when this word appeared. This is day two of my random word challenge. It seems like it’s going to be interesting. 😀 OK, let’s talk briefly about bacon.

Remember when people put bacon on and in everything the way they do Flamin’ Hot Cheetos now? Well, they still do. I’m all for a nice crispy piece of bacon, but bacon milkshakes and bacon ice cream was going too far. OK, I’ll admit I did have a breakfast ice cream that included maple flavored ice cream with bits of waffles and bacon. It wasn’t bad, but the soggy bits of bacon distracted my tastebuds from fully enjoying it. If a bacon milkshake sounds interesting to you, here’s a recipe. Honestly, I may try this milkshake myself. It looks good. No shame here.

I’ll never forget when I first saw a bacon bouquet. My first thought was people are crazy. After giving it some thought, I wouldn’t be mad if my man gave me one of these instead of roses. I’d laugh my ass off, but I sure would eat it.

bacon bouque

If you want your own bacon bouquet, here’s a recipe that includes chocolate.

Alright, now I’m craving bacon. Let me get up and workout to take my mind off of food.




Unique Coffee Drinks You Can Make at Home

With so many varieties of coffee in the world, why settle with using sugar and cream? Introduce your tastebuds to something new with these unique coffee drinks you can make at home.



A popular coffee in Northern Italy, bicerin is made with hot chocolate, dark espresso, and steamed whole milk or sometimes cream. You can also use milk alternatives. Recipe: Salt & Wind



If you’re looking for a dessert coffee, the “affogato al cafe” or “drowned in coffee” in English, is made with Italian espresso and chocolate or vanilla gelato. Feel free to experiment with different gelato flavors for more options. Recipe: Eataly



Barraquito is popular on the western coast of Spain and features layers of coffee, hot milk, condensed milk, cinnamon, lemon zest, and liqueur. The primary recipe uses 43, but you may also use Tía María liqueur. Recipe: Tenerife

Oatmeal Latte


Enjoy your breakfast and latte in one cup! This unique recipe will have you wondering if you should scoop or sip. Whichever you prefer, just enjoy this two in one latte. Recipe: How Sweet Eats



Try the flavors of Hong Kong with this Yuanyang coffee. This coffee has aromatic espresso but elevated with the flavors of milk tea. It has a rich, balanced flavor that isn’t too sweet. Recipe: The Spruce Eats

Vietnamese Iced Coffee

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Instead of adding milk or half & half to your iced coffee, used sweetened condensed milk for more flavor and sweetness. Recipe: Steamy Kitchen

Snickerdoodle Latte

Snickerdoodle latte

The flavor of a snickerdoodle cookie in a cup? Yes, please! Creating this latte is way easier than the cookie recipe. House of Yumm provided additional latte recipes including Nutella, pumpkin spice, and salted caramel using the same base recipe. Score! Recipe: House of Yumm

Quick Food Review: Burger King’s Impossible Whopper

I’ve had the Impossible burger a couple of times from The Cheesecake Factory and fell in love with the plant-based alternative. Approximately a month ago, I found out Burger King also had their version and I gave it a try yesterday.

Not impressed.


The patty was perfectly shaped leading me to believe they receive their Impossible patties frozen. The patty was thin but the diameter of a standard Whopper. The patty had no seasoning except for the charred flavor from their grill. The texture was even different. There were reports that Burger King replacing Impossible Whoppers with actual beef. If you’re hardcore vegan, Burger King grills the plant-based alternative on the same grill as their other meats. You would have to request your Impossible Whopper be grilled separately and hope they follow instructions. I’m not a hardcore vegan, so I didn’t mind.

If I had to guess, The Cheesecake Factory must get their Impossible “meat” delivered ground because the patties are never the same size. I’ve had one patty from The Cheesecake Factory that felt like it weighed 5 lbs. Yes, that’s an exaggeration, but it was a hefty burger. Due to it possibly being ground may allow The Cheesecake Factory to add additional seasoning before grilling.

I won’t purchase the Impossible Whopper from Burger King again. If you’ve never had the Impossible substitute, order elsewhere and hope the patty is fresh and not frozen.

A friend discovered a plant-based alternative at her local Gelson’s market packaged ground. This news prompted me to research and discover Impossible will be sold in local grocery stores worldwide. I look forward to purchasing it!

What’s the Difference Between Ales and Lagers

The first step in learning about beer is to understand the difference between ales and lagers. Ales and lagers are the two main classifications of the beer family. Ales are considered traditional brews, that are generally more robust as they are rarely filtered while Lagers are usually heavily filtered with much cleaner presentations due to the cold lagering period. The difference has nothing to do with the alcohol content or the color. It all begins with the brewing process.

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3 Major Health Benefits of Eating Fish

Apart from being delicious and easy to prepare, there are amazing health benefits of eating fish. It’s one of the healthiest food options to choose from and the nutritional benefits are a great excuse to start indulging. Here are three reasons why you should start incorporating fish into your diet.

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