Oh, hello. It’s been awhile hasn’t it, but it’s not like anything has changed . . .

This XKCD comic speaks to our introvert sides.

Here at the Dirty Dish Club we began to quarantine March 13th and other than essential trips out, we kept a pretty strict quarantine all the way through the end of May. We’re still being pretty cautious around these parts, but letting down our guard a little. During our time of isolation, we did a fair amount of comfort baking and stress eating. Now, something I’ve never mentioned on this blog is that in addition to enjoying making food, I am a fitness instructor and personal trainer. If you’ve perused our recipe archives, this may come as a surprise because we aren’t pushing anything “clean” or sharing recipes with an excessive amount of chicken breasts and sweet potatoes. When it comes to our bodies, I am a strong believer in giving ourselves grace. I’m here to tell you – in my professional opinion – that there is a time and a place for comfort baking. Working out absolutely helped me stay sane and kept me from murdering anyone in my house during quarantine, but sometimes when the world is upside down you just need to bake some chocolate chip cookies. I get that. Is this a great pathway to washboard abs? Of course not, but when all your plans get cancelled, you’re forced to home school your kids, the weather is crappy, and the news make you cry I think there are more important things in life. Honestly, most of the time there are more important things than washboard abs. (You can read more about my thoughts on Baking therapy here.)*

As we are pulling ourselves out of quarantine we are trying to return to more healthy eating patterns with a more appropriate ratio of baking. We’re also taking a hard look at the world and our role in it. We’ve been venturing off grid to recuperate and ponder. Social distancing in nature is slowly bringing the inspiration back. We’re hoping this means we’re all in for some inspiring recipes from our camp kitchen this summer. Before we get to that though, here are some of the Dirty Dish Club kitchen approved recipes that got us through quarantine.

Bakewell Tart

This recipe comes from King Arthur flour and was made more than once during quarantine. Noel, a devoted chocolate fan, was very skeptical, but he LOVED it. This is a must make if you’re a fan of The Great British Baking Show.

Fluffy and Nutty Almond Layer Cake

This cake from Serious Eats is so moist. It satisfies both chocolate and nut lovers without one flavor overpowering the other.

Elote Queso Dip

This recipe from Pinch of Yum was another recipe on repeat. It’s dangerous how easy it is to make this cheesy goodness.

Gnocchi Al Forno with Spinach

This recipe is easy and everyone in the family eats it without complaint. This was a big help on days where we just didn’t have anything left to give. Bonus: it’s comforting, but also sneaks in some veggies.

Overnight Waffles

With life being a little more fluid, we’ve spent more time on breakfast than usual. These yeasted waffles from King Arthur flour are everything a waffle should be – crispy on the outside, and soft on the inside. Ran out of yeast? This sourdough version is also amazing.

Burnt Almond Fudge Ice Cream

This custard ice cream is my absolute favorite ice cream. Lately I’ve been roasting the almonds with 1/2 tsp of salt and it takes the ice cream to the next level.

What helped you get through quarantine?

*If you find that stress baking is your norm and not just a now and again thing, please consider seeking help.

Written by Audrey

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