Girl Versus Dough

multigrain sandwich bread

multigrain sandwich bread

This multigrain sandwich bread is the kind of bread that gets me excited about baking bread, you know?

Let me explain. See, in the summer, no one really wants to be baking. We’d all rather be out of doors, out of office, out of kitchen, etc. I get it. I’m with you. I’ve grilled our dinner no less than five times in the last week (would have been six, if not for that random torrential downpour we had the other day when I was JUST about to go out and grill some pork chops. Dernit). Sometimes, the last thing I want to be doing is baking bread when the sun is shining and beckoning me outdoors.

But no matter the time of year, I love bread. This is pretty clear about me at this point, I would hope. And nothing compares to a homemade loaf fresh from the oven. If I could sing, “Glory glory hallelujah!” and dance a jig every time I baked a loaf of bread, I would (maybe I already do this, WHO CAN SAY). So that’s how this multigrain sandwich bread came to be — because I was craving bread (duh), I needed bread for our morning toast and our lunchtime sandwiches (for picnics!) and I felt like this bread was worthy of the sacrifice of just a few short hours in the kitchen so we could eat homemade, fresh-baked bread for days to come.

One bite, and I was in love. It was so worth it.

whole wheat oatmeal chocolate chip cookie bars

oatmeal chocolate chip cookie bars

We have a problem.

My two-year-old daughter? She’s just like me.

Oh sure, she’s got her own unique personality. She’s fun and spunky and sassy and creative and silly and dramatic all in her own way. But she also yells out, “COOKIE!” from the back seat of the car as soon as we drive past the big red bullseye on the Target sign, anticipating the free treat given to her from the bakery counter every time we shop there. Her arms swing up and down in delight at the sight — the mere mention — of ice cream. She’s been asking for a doughnut after breakfast, after lunch and after dinner since last Saturday, when she received one on a special occasion (OK, and the Saturday before that, too). She’s got so much of her own character, and some of her dad’s, too, but that sweet tooth? I take full credit/blame for that.

The truth is, we can’t go long without sweets in this house. We’ve tried, but it just doesn’t make for a very happy home. With two hangry sweet tooth-ed girls under this roof, my husband has learned there must always be a stash of chocolate somewhere, at the very least. So we strive for balance. And this week, balance looks like whole wheat oatmeal chocolate chip cookie bars — one for the babe, and one for the mama. (OK, maybe two for the mama.)

grilled steak and mushroom kabobs

grilled steak mushroom kabobs

PSST — Scroll to the bottom of this post for an exclusive offer from ButcherBox just for Girl Versus Dough readers! Hint: It involves bacon.

This weekend was a blur, and I am so full and happy from it. These grilled steak and mushroom kabobs have much to do with that.

We had friends in town, we grilled, we drank wine, we walked outside, we got sunburns, we ate ice cream and donuts, we played in sprinklers with our babies. We really lived summer this weekend.

We also enjoyed the aforementioned grilled steak and mushroom kabobs for dinner one night, and then the following night ate sirloin steaks from the grill, and then last night had grilled chicken. To say we fulfilled our organic, grass-fed meat-eating quota in a big way is an understatement, and we can thank our friends at ButcherBox for that.

peach pineapple chai smoothie

peach pineapple chai smoothie

What is this? A protein smoothie on Girl Versus Dough? Believe it, folks. And with one sip of this Peach Pineapple Chai Smoothie, you’ll understand why it’s worth talking about.

I’ve said it before — I’m not much of a smoothie drinker. I’ve tried a few times to be that person, the one who glows from within because she drinks all the green/protein/superfood smoothies, but I just can’t. I would rather eat my food than drink it, I guess. Plus, I am never very good at making a smoothie that is not only good for me, but is tasty, too. One is always compromised for the other.

But with this smoothie, there’s a special ingredient that pulls it all together into something I could sip on all day, every day. It’s revolutionary.

green goddess potato salad with bacon & peas

green goddess potato salad

Ladies and gentlefolk, I present to you your new go-to summer potluck dish.

Those of us in the Midwest know the potluck well. In winter, it’s all about bringing hot dishes in slow cookers stuffed in boxes with blankets to keep food warm (I’m serious — at one potluck I went to last winter, about eight of 10 people came bearing blanketed crockpots in cardboard boxes, and it was amazing). In summer, it’s all about bringing food that pairs well with anything that can be grilled. Because in Minnesota in summer, it’s practically a sin to not be outside at all times.

This Green Goddess potato salad with bacon and peas is a natural fit for the latter (though I’d gladly eat it in the winter, too, alongside my warm hot dish from a blanketed crockpot). It’s just like a classic potato salad with hard-boiled eggs, but instead of mayo we use a creamy homemade, herb-loaded Green Goddess dressing, plus some crisp bacon and fresh peas. Bring this to your next gathering and you’ll be the Potluck Queen/King (which I’m pretty sure is better than being anything else, ever).

5 ingredient nutella granola

nutella granola

I’m calling it: Summer is officially here. And with summer comes the need for snacks: snacks for road trips, snacks for ball games, snacks for camping trips, snacks for long weekends at the cabin, snacks for late nights on the back porch under the twinkle lights (in my Pinterest life).

And I’m here for you, for all of the above, with these words: 5 Ingredient Nutella Granola. It’s all you’ll ever need for snackage all summer long.