about me

    Emily Malone

    culinary arts grad. nutrition facts lover. vegetarian chef. marathon runner. country music maniac. failed dog trainer. barre fanatic. loving mama.

    Contact Emily

    EmilyBMalone@gmail.com

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    What’s Cooking?

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    5K - 23:28

    10K - 52:35

    15K - 1:38:14

    1/2 Marathon - 1:57:39

    Marathon - 3:50:58

    A Look Back.



Meze on the Mall.

First off, ten million thank you’s to you ALL.  I was absolutely floored to find out that I won the Project Food Blog Reader’s Choice Award again!  It was such a great boost going into the weekend, as I planned and prepared for the next challenge. 

This week’s challenge was called Road Trip, and we were each asked to create a delicious meal that will travel well and still look great. From picnics and school lunches to bento boxes, or any other meal on the go, you need to whip up a entree, side, drink, and dessert to enjoy after hitting the road.  As soon as I read the prompt for this challenge I got really excited.  We prepare meals on the go all the time, so that we can always be sure that we will have healthy vegetarian options.

For our weekend picnic, I prepared a Mediterranean feast for the eyes and the taste buds…

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As part of our challenge, we were each given a handy Project Food Blog cooler to transport our meal to our final destination.

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My goal for our meal was to make it as finger-food and eco-friendly as possible.  Who wants to mess with plates and silverware when you’re eating on the go?  By packing everything in reusable containers, and using serving spoons and napkins from home, we didn’t have to throw anything away and waste unnecessary disposable dishes.

Mediterranean food is not only delicious, it is known for being incredibly healthy, and I decided on a small-bite meze menu for our lunch spread.  For our first course, I decided to take the plunge and attempt stuffed grape leaves (all recipes coming tomorrow!).

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Stuffed grape leaves are one of my favorite things to order at restaurants, but I have never been brave enough to make them until now.  They were much more labor intensive than I was expecting, but the end result was totally worth it.

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Brown rice, toasted almonds, raisins, parsley, mint, dill, lemon juice, and olive oil all wrapped up in tangy grape leaves.  Just as delicious as I had hoped they would be.

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For our main course, I prepared the fixings for falafel pita sandwiches – YUM.  The first filling was delicious tabouli salad.  But not just any tabouli – my favorite quinoa tabouli recipe!

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Traditional tabouli is made with bulgur, but quinoa makes a great gluten-free (and high protein!) alternative. 

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The addition of minced olives to this salad gives it a little extra salty zest that I LOVE. 

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In addition to the tabouli, we needed FALAFELS to make our falafel pita sandwiches. 

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And because I can’t seem to just make anything the traditional way, I made a hybrid of chickpea and sweet potato falafel patties.  The perfect bite size for finger food!

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These were made by combining chickpea flour with whole chickpeas, mashed sweet potato, fresh parsley, flax egg, cumin, coriander, and cayenne pepper.  Delicious!

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I didn’t want our sandwiches to be too dry, so I decided to include traditional Mediterranean tzatziki sauce. 

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But of course it wasn’t actually traditional – I made it vegan by using soy yogurt, and combined it with a whole slew of chopped herbs, lemon juice, and cucumber. 

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To wash it all down, we packed a fruity mint pomegranate spritzer!

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Homemade sparking water (using our Soda Stream machine), combined with muddled mint leaves and pomegranate juice.  So refreshing!

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And last but certainly not least, dessert hides behind the wax paper…

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Baklava cookies!  Yes, you read that right…

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I really wanted to stick with my Mediterranean theme, and every time I thought about dessert I came back to the most traditional of all – baklava.  But the thing about baklava is, you can’t just make a little bit.  You have to make a whole casserole dish full of the sweet stuff!  Couple that with my fear of phyllo dough, and I knew I needed to get creative.

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I ended up making a vegan shortbread thumbprint cookie, and filling the middle with a baklava-type mixture of toasted pistachios, walnuts, and hazelnuts, tossed with honey, vegan butter, and cinnamon.  They were AMAZING.

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With everything prepared, we grabbed a few serving spoons and cloth napkins from the kitchen

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Packed up the cooler…

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And hit the road to our special picnic spot.  Casey was nice enough to be the official cooler transporter since I am still rocking the crutches.

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But I did my part by strapping on a backpack with our camera and picnic blanket.  :)

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We had a special spot in mind, so we made our way to the Metro and headed north towards the city…

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Got the spot and started to set up camp.

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At the base of the Washington Monument! 

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I challenge you to find a better spot to enjoy a picnic.

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With views of Lincoln and the Reflecting Pool in the distance…

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We set up our spread and got ready to dig in!

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Who needs junky disposable cups when you can drink straight out of an eco-friendly reusable bottle?

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First up – grape leaves.

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I am a firm believer that anything with raisins is delicious, but these really were incredible.  I could have just eaten the whole tub of them as my meal. 

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Next up, mini pitas. 

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These perfect little bite sized pitas required no plates.  Just a spoonful of tabouli in the bottom…

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With a delicious sweet potato falafel stuffed inside, and topped with cool tzatziki sauce.

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Casey opted for the full man-sized pitas.

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He was NOT messing around.  :)

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We lunched on grape leaves and pitas and took in all the beautiful scenery.  The leaves are finally changing here in DC!

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We had the perfect weather, on the perfect day, in our favorite city.  You can’t ask for anything more.

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Okay, except for baklava cookies.  Those really pushed it over the edge.  We chowed down on our final course, and then ended up like this…

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Passed out in the sunshine with my favorite person in the world.  I wish we could have stayed there all day!

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Staring at the sky…

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And simply taking it all in…

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Do you see what I see?

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But eventually it was time to pack up and go, and say farewell to the city until next weekend!  Having spent my whole week trapped on the couch, it was such a nice treat to get out and enjoy the city and the sunshine.

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Had it not been for this week’s Project Food Blog challenge, we probably wouldn’t have thought to take a picnic up to the National Mall.  But I can assure you now that this is definitely becoming a regular occurrence. 

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And by using all our own containers, serving tools, and linens – we packed up our picnic without a single piece of waste.  Because, after all, who wouldn’t want to protect views like this?

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Thank you again for your continued support.  You can vote for my entry here!

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158 Comments so far
Leave a comment

Marci     at 6:02 pm

Looks delicious and tasty! And baklava on a cookie? Yum. What a beautiful place to picnic. You’re a winner!

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Evan Thomas     at 6:02 pm

What an awesome place to have a picnic! And those cookies sound delicious, too

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Evan Thomas     at 6:02 pm

What an awesome place to have a picnic! And those cookies sound delicious, too

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Ashley @ Nourishing the Soul     at 6:04 pm

My husband’s family is Lebanese and I’ve always wanted to try making grape leaves. Actually, the first Mediterranean thing I ever made was your quinoa tabouli, which I made a few months ago!

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meg @ the veg meg     at 6:06 pm

Gaaahhhh those cookies own my soul! I can’t wait for the recipes! Everything looks amazing.

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Jessica     at 6:06 pm

those baklava cookies look like they are to die for! I will be making them this week, no doubt about it. Your picnic spot looks amazing! No leaf change in south Florida so luckily I can see it through all you northern bloggers’ pictures :)

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kelli     at 6:07 pm

awesome! this looks so good! and love the views and where you picnicked. It is also amazing how you made all this with your legs injured!!

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JL goes Vegan     at 6:12 pm

Perfect Picnic!!! You, as always, have my vote!

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Annie@stronghealthyfit     at 6:15 pm

Wow, what an impressive meal! I’ve got to try making that tabbouli and falafel !

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Jordan Wandfluh     at 6:18 pm

Wonderful!!! I can’t wait to try all of this :)
I adore stuffed grape leaves.
By the way I don’t want to go all the way back through your posts to find the link to the soda machine. I forgot all about you having one. Do you have a link for me? I think I may put it on my Christmas list!

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Melissa Reply:

Not to butt in, but I found the Soda Stream page on Emily’s Amazon store: http://astore.amazon.com/thefrontburnerblog-20/detail/B002SKHQS4

The main product information site is here for the US: http://www.sodastreamusa.com/
and here for Canada: http://www.sodastream.ca/

I’ve started drinking sparkling water lately as an alternative to pop and I’ve been thinking about getting a Soda Stream for awhile. At $1/litre for sparkling water at the grocery store it wouldn’t take too long to pay for itself and I wouldn’t have to deal with all those bottles.

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Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

Ahhh thanks for helping me out Melissa! Honestly, it is our MOST used appliance. Casey is totally obsessed with it. We probably drink 2-3 bottles of sparkling water a day. It MORE than pays for itself.

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Raphael Parker Reply:

Raphael here (from high school!). Great blog!

I just got a soda stream and absolutely love it. I’ve been nervous about making mixed drinks the way that you do in your post, because I thought that it might flavor the bottle that comes with the soda stream. Do you find that your soda has any lingering flavor of whatever drink you made last (e.g. pomegranate-mint)?

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Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

OMG Raphi! WHAT? Awesome! You can’t add the juice before you carbonate it or you get an explosion (trust me). But we haven’t noticed any issue with it tainting the bottles. I just rinse them with super hot water and soap a few times a week. Most often we just do plain sparkling water – I never use the syrups and things it came with. So fun to hear from you. :)

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Errign     at 6:21 pm

Such a cool locale for a picnic, and as always, your food looks amazing. Glad to see you smiling, Emily, hope the crutches aren’t crampin’ yo style too much :)

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Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

I’m trying to bring them back into style. :) Hopefully not for too much longer though…

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Charlie     at 6:24 pm

I love stuffed grape leafs too! :D

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Kristina @ spabettie     at 6:25 pm

and once again, you SO have my vote… this all looks SO delicious, I love stuffed grape leaves, and the falafel + tzatziki look amazing.

I am so happy you got out and did this!! I love how this challenge has been so much more for some people – more than creating amazing foods… having great experiences and making new regular events! Love the always beautiful National Mall… *chills*

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Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

It really has been such a fun project – win or lose. I’ve had a lot of fun coming out of my comfort zone!

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Dynamics     at 6:26 pm

Wow, you put your heart and soul into that meal. You are definitely a true winner! I will continue to vote for you!

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alison     at 6:27 pm

Wow, what a beautiful picnic spread. Everything looks absolutely delicious. And you couldn’t ask for a better picnic spot. It looks like you two went at the perfect time; the Army 10 Miler was this morning and the Metro was a MAD HOUSE. Good luck with the next phase of the competition!

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Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

I saw a bunch of people wearing the 10-miler tshirts walking around the mall. Really hope I get to do that one next year.

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alison Reply:

I hope you can run it next year. It’s an incredible race; I had more fun than I thought I possibly could. Sign up quickly, though. It sold out in 36 hours this year!

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DebZ     at 6:33 pm

What a gorgeous meal! Please, please post the falafel recipe – the deepfried falafels always gross me out, but these look sooooo good! good luck!

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Meghan     at 6:36 pm

another winner! way to go! Looks like a great day!

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Allison     at 6:51 pm

Holy Moly you ROCK! I haven’t voted at all so far (woops.. sorry) but I am now! and I’m voting for YOU. Can’t wait to get the recipes. I’ve been reading your blog for over a year now and you’re an absolute inspiration. Best of luck!

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Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

Thanks so much, Allison!

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Jaime     at 6:51 pm

I’ve never had grape leaves that I’ve liked, but I haven’t given up on them. Not entirely, anyway.

Your lunch looks delicious! I want to make everything. And, more importantly, eat it. I look forward to seeing the recipes so I can hoard them for another time.

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emilyr     at 6:52 pm

LOVE THIS!!! Can’t wait to vote :)

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Marisa @ Loser for Life     at 7:05 pm

OMG Emily! Everything looks amazing! I’ve been looking for a quinoa tabouli recipe- I will definitely try yours!

And total yum to the baklava cookies!

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sarah (the SHU box)     at 7:13 pm

hi emily! i’m so late on catching up up with everything, but i’m so sorry to hear about your injury — and i think you are doing an amazing job rising to the challenge of fighting through it!

i also wanted to say this picnic looks absolutely delightful, both for the company and the food :)

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Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

Thanks Sarah! It has been a long week to say the least. Doing my best to move on and keep smiling. Missed you guys this weekend in Charlottesville!

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Megan (Running Foodie)     at 7:14 pm

So great! Those baklava cookies are on my list :)

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bitt     at 7:17 pm

Yum! I love that it’s all vegan and a lot of gluten-free choices. Hope you post the recipes.

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chelsey @ clean eating chelsey     at 7:20 pm

You totally deserved your award! This post was amazing – and that food? To die for!

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Carrie     at 7:20 pm

Cant wait for these recipes!!! I made your Butternut squash black bean chili in the pumpkin this weekend and it was sooo cute and tasty :)

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Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

So glad it turned out – yum!

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Kath     at 7:21 pm

Your falafels look delicious! Love the sweet potato addition.

And what a FANTASTIC picnic spot!

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Alayna @ Thyme Bombe     at 7:27 pm

Great looking picnic spread. Very excited to get your falafel recipe!

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Lisa     at 7:28 pm

It all looks delicious!! I can’t wait to try out these recipes.

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Emily     at 7:33 pm

Y’all are so precious and this looks like the perfect day! …sans, crutches of course. I love your nail polish!!!

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Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

Thanks! It makes me feel fancy. :)

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Jen     at 7:34 pm

What an amazing picnic spot! And the meal looks absolutely incredible. Not that I ever expect anything less from you :)

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Cynthia (It All Changes)     at 7:37 pm

That is a perfect place for a picnic.

The picture of Casey’s glasses with the reflection is pretty amazing. Such a great shot!

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Lauren @ laurenINlawrence     at 7:38 pm

WAY awesome. I can’t wait for the baklava cookies recipe :)

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Krystina (Organically Me)     at 7:43 pm

So beautiful! Those grape leaves look amazing. :)

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Maya     at 7:51 pm

I LOVE that you made a zero waste picnic. And the baklava cookies sound absolutely inspired! I hope you’ll be sharing the recipe!

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Stephanie     at 8:04 pm

Looks amazing, as usual! Can’t wait to see the sweet potato falafel recipe later this week. Yum!

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Rachel     at 8:05 pm

LOVE the picture with the reflection in Casey’s sunglasses!! How cool!

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Katharine     at 8:43 pm

I can’t imagine a better picnic spot! How gorgeous!! I’ve never made Mediterranean food but I am definitely going to check out the recipes.

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Kamaile     at 8:47 pm

Can’t wait for the RECIPES! Emily, you made me even more excited to visit your great city and run the MCM.

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Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

AWESOME! I will be out there cheering! :)

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Miranda     at 8:59 pm

Amazing!! Wonderful food and pictures, it was like I was there!!

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Lee     at 9:03 pm

Everything looks delicious, especially those cookies. I love baklava!

I hope your leg is feeling better.

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Ashley     at 9:08 pm

Beautiful!! All of it! :) The spread sounds perfect. I am most interested in the grape leaves and those COOKIES. I think you did a FABulous job turning baklava into cookies. Wow!! You’ve blown me away again. Lovely photos of the picnic as well!

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Tricia B     at 9:23 pm

No wonder you won the challenge – you do a great job and everything looks delicious. You make me wish we had headed to the City this weekend – looks like a good day for it. Enjoy your week – and best wishes on quick healing!

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Rachel     at 9:27 pm

Love all of this and can’t wait for the recipes!! You definitely get my vote again!

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Gabrielle     at 9:29 pm

Great post, and yummy looking picnic! Fantastic photos too, as always. :)

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Shauna     at 9:42 pm

Love it and you look amazing !!! :-)

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Eva     at 9:45 pm

awesome — so glad you are continuing with pfb despite the fact that I’m sure it was so painful to make all these amazing goodies.

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Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

Just took me two days instead of one. :) I am SO slow!

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Eva Reply:

but you did it! you are so much stronger than you think ;)

voting for you now! ;)

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Valerie @ City|Life|Eats     at 9:50 pm

That looks awesome. I love picnic-ing around there – another good spot in DC that is not on the mall but very scenic is the area around Freedom Plaza :)

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Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

Ohh good to know! We will check that one out.

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Katie @ Healthy Heddleston     at 9:52 pm

LOVEEEEE where you decided to have your picnic!!

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Lindsay     at 10:09 pm

This meal looks SO delicious!! So many of my favorite things! I can’t wait to try your quinoa tabouli…

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Lisa (bakebikeblog)     at 10:14 pm

oh my – this post is positively wonderful and I am hungry just LOOKING at all those culinary treats!!!

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Emily     at 10:19 pm

Beautiful job Emily! What an awesome menu, I can’t wait to try out stuffed grape leaves! All the dishes look divine :) Good luck!!

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Ravenous Rowie     at 10:26 pm

Beautiful meal! I love your twist on each traditional recipe! YUM!

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Amy K @ Onehealthypeanut     at 10:29 pm

Holy moly! Can not wait for the recipe to the baklava cookies! They are one of my favorite desserts but I never make them. Yumm!!! What a great idea :)

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freja     at 10:36 pm

you seriously outdo yourself every challenge. i don’t see how you can’t win this!

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sassy molassy     at 10:58 pm

Awesome pics! Quite the trek to take your little picnic there on public transportation w/ crutches.

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Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

Oh man, it really was. The hardest part was the metro to the monument – those city blocks are LONG! :)

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Monica     at 10:59 pm

What a fun day!

And if at all possible I would like to go ahead and make a reservation for 2 – just so if and when you decide to share all these dishes with the general public, I can have guaranteed seating within the first week of your restaurant being opened. :)

Good luck in this next round! You will do awesome!

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Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

Hehe DONE! Marked you in the books. :)

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Susan     at 11:09 pm

That picnic looks amazing! Can’t wait for the grape leaves recipe. My BF just bought me the Soda Stream and I just love it!

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Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

It is hands down our most frequently used appliance.

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Nelle @ Living Cliche     at 11:15 pm

What an amazing looking meal! I love Mediterranean food as is, but I think that all of the little twists you added make it even better! I am also terrified of phyllo dough and traditional baklava recipes, so I’m excited to see how your version is done. Sounds awesome.

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Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

Not to mention phyllo dough is pricey and so fragile!

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Kristen @ Kristen, Sweetly     at 11:31 pm

So glad to see that you got to spend time outside. I hope you’re feeling better. :-) And, a la Stephanie Tanner: “how rude!” about keeping us hanging for those recipes! Haha.

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Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

Ahh I’m sorry! I thought it would make the post 4,000 times longer to include all the recipes.

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Stacey     at 11:45 pm

*Stomach growling furiously* I’m totally voting for you! Count me in :) Love how creative you are in the kitchen! The scenery looks gorgeous my dear

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Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

Haha thanks!

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Amber K     at 11:58 pm

Ok, I am incredibly awe-inspired by this entire idea! Vegan items, gluten-free items, and TASTY items? You’ve outdone yourself! A girl on crutches to boot!

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Claire (Low Impact Fashionista)     at 12:01 am

You are so cute! This looks like a really fun adventure, and the food looks aaaamazing. OF course I am immediately drawn to the cookies :) I never thought of putting Quinoa on pita with tzatziki sauce but its a great idea!

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maya @ finding balance in tokyo     at 1:59 am

What a fantastic theme! I love the idea of using mini-pitas, I am definitely going to put those on my must-try list, since I can’t buy them over on this side of the world. :D

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whitney     at 7:07 am

My family is greek so this meal is right up my alley. Perfect!

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Caroline     at 7:15 am

You’ve nailed the perfect picnic. Everything looks delicious.

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SAL     at 7:49 am

You are truly talented–and you can write! I wish the NYT would hire you to write for their food section!!

[Reply]

Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

OMG – me too!

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Hope     at 8:06 am

What an amazing picnic! The food looked delicious! I want to try everything that you made! You and Casey are so adorable. You can just tell how in love the two of you are. :)

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Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

Aww thank you! He’s okay. :)

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Alexia @ Dimple Snatcher     at 9:23 am

I adore everything your picnic idea! And now I want a falafel sandwich…mmmmm. And I love how everything is meatless.

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cookeatlove     at 9:29 am

What a fantastic spot to picnic. Sending you a heart.

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Canadian     at 9:35 am

You are so creative!

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Colleen     at 9:41 am

It looks like you had a beautiful day for your lovely picnic.
This is a great place to buy reusable utensils for on-the-go meals :)

http://www.to-goware.com/store/cart.php?m=product_list&c=7

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MaryBe     at 9:50 am

Loved the photos, especially the one of your husband. That is award winning. Really sums up all that is important doesn’t it?
Can not WAIT for the recipes. And WHEN will you have a cook book out?? You need to do one
This post will earn you another Reader’s Choice for sure

[Reply]

Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

Trust me, I would LOVE to do a cookbook! Find me a publisher. :)

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Nicole of Raspberry Stethoscope     at 10:09 am

So jealous of your picnic location! What kind of water bottle is that? Super cute.

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KellyC     at 10:14 am

I am so excited about how you are advancing and winning special recognition in the PFB challenge. I’ve been scouting the competition and I really think you will go all the way. Can’t wait for your recipes. I love the mini-ideas because they work great for children who take lunches and leave half of everything normal size uneaten.

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Whitney     at 10:41 am

Wow, this post was nicely done. You really have a talent and should definitely take advantage of it to the fullest extent, both writing and cooking! Have a great week! :)

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Joslyn @ missfitbliss     at 10:45 am

Wow that looks like a lot of fun! And I really like the idea of keeping your picnic eco-friendly.

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valerie     at 10:56 am

You have my vote. I loved this post, heck I love your blog.

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colleen     at 10:57 am

Everything looks and sounds amazing. Need to try my hand at those grape leaves.

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Karen     at 11:04 am

Hi Emily
Just wanted to say thanks for the inspiation. I am in the UK and looking to get into running. I wondered what your diet and eating tips were for running. Did you follow a particular eating plan during your marathon training. Many thanks and looking forward to more posts.
Karen

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Natalia - a side of simple     at 11:07 am

Love this. You radiate with joy even amidst your recent trials :)

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sippitysup     at 11:38 am

Kudos to the “Green” quality (in more ways than one) of this challenge. GREG

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skinnyrunner     at 12:01 pm

gorgeous looking meal, day, and scenery! love how everything is mini and bite size.

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Lindsey     at 12:34 pm

Em,
Can we add this menu to this year’s Topsail dinners? I can’t decide what looks more delicious. Awesome picnic!

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Mom     at 12:56 pm

Nice job! :)

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tina     at 1:01 pm

omg, love this! and you totally inspired me- i have some leftover sweet potato gnocchi dough that will totally work with some chickpeas for falafal- yum!!!!

and your picnic is adorable- i was briefly in DC this weekend, and thought of you- actually ran past the wash monument on saturday morning- thought to see if you wanted to meet up but assumed you weren’t up for it- shoulda looked for you in the park ;)

glad you are getting out of the house! good luck this round- i’m voting for you right now!

[Reply]

Dorry     at 1:15 pm

Yay! Another FABULOUS entry! Everything looks perfect and I love that you focused on having zero waste at the end of your picnic. As big picnickers, Billy and I need to be more conscious of our waste…we use too many paper towels! But we’re working on it. :)

Good luck with this round!

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Amelia from Z Tasty life     at 1:33 pm

you have a Soda Stream machine? sooo jealous. GREAT theme. I want one of those falafels :)

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Ana     at 1:36 pm

Omg, I cannot wait for the recipes Emily!! We love Mediterranean food at our house and I have been thinking of making the stuffed grape leaves for so long. Can’t wait to try your recipe, as I am sure it will be amazing (like all the other recipes I tried from your blog!). Truly cannot wait! And the chickpea patties look delicious too!
Awesome location for a picnic, and you guys went on a beautiful day, look at the sky, super nice!
Ana

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Sarah (Going on Goals)     at 2:03 pm

Your picnic looks amazing! and what a great location. I can’t wait to try your cookie recipe.

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Toby     at 2:03 pm

This all looks so delicious! So delicious that I delurked AND got an account on FoodBuzz in order to cast my vote for you.

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Ashley M. [at] (never home)maker     at 2:18 pm

Very timely — just last week, Stephen was spooning a million stuffed grape leaves into a container at Wegmans, and I said to him: Ya know, there’s probably a way we can make these. I was planning to look for a recipe this week. Can’t wait to try yours!

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Maryann     at 3:11 pm

Emily,
You’ve done it again. All your efforts will pay off. You’ve got my vote!
Looks like your doing pretty good. And keeping your leg elevated like you should.
Lancaster Co PA Gal

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Jean@RoastedRootsandPumpkinSpice     at 3:53 pm

AH, I wish I went to this picnic. I especially want to try your falafel patties. Looks like Casey is enjoying every bite!

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lauren     at 4:40 pm

I am thinking we should’ve skipping Mai Thai in Old Town & had lunch with y’all on the mall :o)

Looking forward to meeting-up next time!

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amy     at 5:03 pm

I am generally not a fan of baklava, but those cookies looked so delicious! I can’t wait for the recipe, I will definitely be testing them out. I hope your leg is feeling better :)

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Amanda @ bakingwithoutabox     at 5:24 pm

Way to rock those crutches! I remember picnics on the Mall. Always good times with my friends. Love those cookies! Gotta make some of those.

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Clare @ Fitting It All In     at 5:56 pm

What a CUTE way to enjoy falafel and pita!

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Rachel     at 6:11 pm

You have my vote, hands down!! Such a unique idea for a picnic, I love it!! and those cookies…look delish!! i cannot wait for these recipes!! Sending tons of good vibes and karma your way!

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Dee     at 8:06 pm

YUM, YUM, YUM Emily! I love mediterranean food! I love how you make each and every dish your own! I’m totally voting for you! :)

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Tiny Urban Kitchen     at 8:53 pm

Congrats on winning Reader’s Choice AGAIN! This post is totally making me miss DC (I was there during cherry blossom season this year). That is such a perfect picnic spot!

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Peter @ FotoCuisine     at 9:18 pm

I went to High School in Wheaton, and we just brought the whole family up to DC for summer vacation this year. Love that town and lots of great places to eat! (And, I have to say I’m a sucker for tzatziki)

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Lisa     at 10:39 pm

Awesome menu- and what a great location for a picnic.

Sending you a vote.

Lisa.

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ALAINA     at 10:59 pm

As much as I want to try those baklava cookies, the sweet potato falafel cakes are calling my name….mmmmm!

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Melanie     at 9:06 am

Love the food, and the picnic, everything is very impressive. What is most impressive though is that your gold nail polish hasn’t chipped yet!

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Lori Lynn     at 9:35 am

I’m a patriot! You definitely have my vote.
LL

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Dana     at 10:36 am

This is definitely my kind of picnic. Love the Mediterranean Theme!

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Tracey     at 10:39 am

Great post! I love Mediterranean food! It is absolutely one of my faves, but I also have been afraid to make my own stuffed grape leaves. Can’t wait to try your recipes! Hope you are feeling better. Hang in there!

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Tracey     at 10:39 am

Great post! I love Mediterranean food! It is absolutely one of my faves, but I also have been afraid to make my own stuffed grape leaves. Can’t wait to try your recipes! Hope you are feeling better. Hang in there!

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Teri [a foodie stays fit]     at 10:59 am

oh my gosh, that whole meal looks amazing!!! I’ve had stuffed grape leaves once and wasn’t a huge fan but I bet I’d like yours! And when do we get that baklava cookie recipe??? YUM!

[Reply]

Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

cookie recipe posted today! :)

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Heather     at 10:59 am

I was like “Heck yeah, Mediterranean noms! Alright, I can get behind this…” And then I saw Baklava cookies and passed out from excitement.

Great job!

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natalie (the sweets life)     at 12:54 pm

just voted—this is FABULOUS! I wish I had been on this picnic :) Hoping you post recipes for everything! (maybe you have, I’m a little behind on my google reader!)

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Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

Cookie recipe was just posted, and the others will be up tomorrow!

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Tamicka     at 1:25 pm

I love meditteranean food so when I saw this spread my mouth began to water. I cannot wait to see the recipes for this meal. I don’t know what looked more tasty, the grapeleaves or those baklava cookies. YUM-O. Great job!

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Tamicka     at 1:25 pm

I love meditteranean food so when I saw this spread my mouth began to water. I cannot wait to see the recipes for this meal. I don’t know what looked more tasty, the grapeleaves or those baklava cookies. YUM-O. Great job!

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Sues     at 2:38 pm

Mmm now I’m totally craving stuffed grape leaves!! Everything looks pretty awesome…. and the cookies are to-die for!!! Good luck!!! :) :)

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RhodeyGirl     at 3:25 pm

Just voted for you- good luck!

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Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

Thanks Sabrina! You totally inspired the grape leaves.

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Katie     at 5:29 pm

Your nails are still done! Can you PLEASE make us this meal?! Are you coming down for Thanksgiving…maybe we should have a Mediterranean feast instead. I’ve never really liked turkey all that much!

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Emily @ The Front Burner Blog Reply:

haha YES! I have not been lounging in chlorine for a week. :) And double yes on the Mediterranean feast – I’ll make the grape leaves!

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Emily @ The Front Burner Blog     at 5:43 pm

haha YES! I have not been lounging in chlorine for a week. :) And double yes on the Mediterranean feast – I’ll make the grape leaves!

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Kathy     at 9:39 pm

My daughter and I can’t wait to try these recipes. You continue to inspire us! You have our votes!

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meaghan (the decorated cookie)     at 10:52 pm

yay DC! I’m in DC, too, and I always forget to use my own city as a backdrop. Kudos to you! Hope to join you up there in the next round :)

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janet     at 8:22 am

This is a wonderful picnic meal! I hope you share all the recipes, the falafels look great! :)

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jen cheung     at 11:08 pm

Congratulation for making to challenge #6!!! You’ve got my vote again this round! Congrats & Best wishes to making to next round :)

Have a great week
jen @ http://www.passion4food.ca

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suki @ [Super Duper Fantastic]     at 11:52 pm

what a delicious picnic! :D i’ll have to look into that soda stream! sounds like an easy way to get some sparkly!

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Liren     at 8:42 pm

I love how PFB has introduced me to new and amazing blogs! Your entire menu is wonderful, but the clincher was the Baklava cookies! Absolutely fantastic :)

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Megan     at 1:39 am

Hey!

I absolutely adore you blog. It’s become my go-to place for good recipes. You’re also the reason my hubby bought me a rice cooker for my birthday. I was very specific about the one I wanted too. :o)

The real reason I’m commenting is because those falafel patties look delicious, but I’m not sure what the amounts of each thing should be and I couldn’t find the recipe on the blog. Any suggestions?

Thanks!

[Reply]

Emily Malone Reply:

I never posted the recipe, I’m sorry! I will remake them and post it again! They were really good.

[Reply]

Megan     at 1:39 am

Hey!

I absolutely adore you blog. It’s become my go-to place for good recipes. You’re also the reason my hubby bought me a rice cooker for my birthday. I was very specific about the one I wanted too. :o)

The real reason I’m commenting is because those falafel patties look delicious, but I’m not sure what the amounts of each thing should be and I couldn’t find the recipe on the blog. Any suggestions?

Thanks!

[Reply]

Sarah     at 5:40 am

All your food looks absolutely delicious!! I was wondering if you had posted the recipe for the falafel patties as I couldn’t find it in the recipe index? Thanks :)

[Reply]

From Washington to Washington. | Daily Garnish     at 12:00 pm

[...] while I will surely miss sunny picnics under the Washington [...]

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