Cherry Galette

Hello from Indianapolis! I was just here last week for work, but I’m back again, this time for the Girls Junior Volleyball National Championships! The team I coach qualified back in April, and it’s finally time to show our stuff. Making it here means we’re one of the top 36 teams in the country in our division, which is a pretty remarkable feat. We had a long season (tryouts were back in November), but I’m excited to see how well they can do. And I’ll be glad to have my evenings back…for a little while, at least. I’ll be in Indy through Sunday night, which means prep for our 4th of July celebration on Monday needs to be short and sweet. Enter this gorgeous cherry galette. Tart and sweet with huge chunks of cherries and a kiss of almond extract in an incredibly flaky crust. I’m obsessed.

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Green Jello Salad

You read that right: Jello salad. If you grew up outside the Midwest, that combination of words may send you running for the hills. This one is particularly odd. Lime Jello. Melted mini marshmallows. Crushed pineapple. Cottage cheese. Cool Whip. All you sophisticated types have already closed the window, I’m sure. But for those of you who are still here, you’re my people. It’s a skill, really, turning something called green Jello salad into a serious side dish instead of something relegated to the back corner of the dessert table. (Yes, Jello salad is a side dish–maybe a snack–but never dessert. There’s still real dessert to be eaten.)

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Spinach and Artichoke Dip

Heyyy summer, I’ve missed you. If this weekend was any indication, you’re going to be pretty rad this year. We did a whole lot of roof sitting, pool lounging, water balloon launching, beverage consuming, delicious food eating, and friends and family hanging, and I could not have been more pleased. I love a good weekend scheduled in advance, but when a weekend of basically no plans turns into one of the best we’ve had in a while, I’m grateful that we don’t have much on the books for the rest of the summer. The only thing missing from this weekend? Some solid snack choices. I made guacamole Friday night for an impromptu Mexican feast, but the rest of the weekend plans were so last minute that snacks fell off my radar. In the future, I’ll be more prepared and whip up a batch of this spinach and artichoke dip for us to munch on.

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Fudgesicles

What’s better than a popsicle on a hot day? A chocolate popsicle on a hot day. Fudgesicles are something deeply ingrained into my childhood memories. The chocolate delights of my youth are nowhere close to these. We always had plenty of frozen treats to chose from (I definitely come by my sweet tooth naturally, and my mom keeps a well-stocked freezer), and real ice cream always stole the show for me. Which meant by the time we ran out of chocolate chip and cookie dough, the fudgesicles were slightly freezer burnt, strings of chocolate turned gummy and sticking to their paper wrappers. It didn’t stop me from devouring them.

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Pretzel Dogs

I’m finding it difficult to share about food today. If you’re reading this, it means you spend time on the internet and have unquestionably heard about the devastating shooting in Orlando. The largest mass shooting in American history. 50 people dead. The weight of that is staggering. It’s heartbreaking and confusing and makes everything seem dark. Why is there so much hate in our world? That’s a hard reality to come to terms with, but we must persevere. We cannot accept a future in our country where one man can hold his beliefs in higher regard than the lives of innocent people and act on it in such an incredibly terrifying way. Talking about birthdays and film festivals and pretzel dogs on a day like today may seem small and insignificant, but I refuse to allow the hatred of one man to stop me from thinking about things that make me happy. I am not directly affected by the shooting. I have no friends or family directly affected. But an act like this should affect us all, and it should affect us deeply. I could not publish today’s post without acknowledging the loss felt by so many. Love one another. Love without question and without asking for anything in return. Love because we want others to accept us for who we are, so we must do the same for them. No one is without flaws, but who you love will never one of them.

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