Thanks for joining me for another Nine Favorite Things post.
Happy 2020, happy January! Hope you all had a great New Years’ and are slowly easing into this brand new year (and decade for that matter).
I’ve spent this past week taking things a bit slower than normal. I’ve also been working to get ahead on new content in hopes of really starting the year off right. With the holidays these last two weeks, everything has just been so much slower. Emails slow down, the phone hasn’t been constantly ringing, and I’ve finally had time to test new recipes, photograph them, brainstorm, and do the things I love most…like spending New Year’s morning making Asher chocolate chip pancakes (I used the recipe in HBH Super Simple) and this hot cocoa. It’s been so nice. I feel very ready and excited to not only tackle the week ahead, but the year ahead as well. I have a very good feeling that this year is going to be a GOOD year.
How about you all? Are you feeling refreshed after the holidays? Are you excited for a fresh start and a new year? I know it can be hard to transition from holiday mode back to real life, but I’m hoping HBH can be a fun outlet for you all. Speaking of which, I LOVED SO MUCH reading all of your comments on last Sunday’s favorite’s post. Your (very kind) feedback and suggestions for not only new recipes but also new content (beyond recipes) are so helpful for me. Thanks so much to everyone who took the time to leave me your thoughts, ideas, and sweet, sweet messages!
In case you missed it, this past week I shared the 25 most popular recipes of 2019 as picked by you all. These are the recipes that you guys made most this year. I’m so excited that the number one recipe was one I thought would, of course, be a flop. Can you guess what recipe it is?
Coming up this week. It’s the first full week of HBH healthy January 2020 and I’m sharing out some new healthy, but cozy, favorites. We’ll be starting off with a cozy bowl of soup. Then the most colorful and flavorful (non-boring) salad. On Wednesday we’ll have a new vegetarian dinner that’s my personal favorite. And, of course, a chocolatey treat to end the week. So many delicious and healthy recipes to come.
Lastly, if you’re catching up on blog posts from the week, be sure to sign up for our daily newsletters. They’ll help you to stay up to date with everything that’s happening here, as well as fun content you’ll only get via email. And of course, if you’re meal planning today, don’t forget to check out my menu below (it’s #9 on the favorite’s list).
1. Favorites from 2019 + why I’m so excited for 2020.
This past year has been huge. We hit one million followers on Instagram, put out a New York Times Bestselling cookbook, I got to meet so many of you in person, traveled back and forth from NYC to LA, stopped in Chicago, appeared on Good Morning America, The Rachel Ray Show, and so much more. Here are some of my favorite memories taken straight from my Instagram stories archives.
Celebrating Women’s Day with The Little Market.
Filming with Chriselle Lim.
Good Morning America!
Celebrating HBH Super Simple in LA.
Tapping Hallmark Home & Family.
New York Times Best sellers list!
Shooting with Anthropologie and little Asher.
Tapping The Rachel Ray Show.
For 2020, I’m most excited to continue to grow Half Baked Harvest with new projects and by further connecting with you all. Growth not only the blog, but on Instagram, and by traveling for more events and cookbook signings (a bit more on that below). I have such big goals and dreams for HBH. I’m excited to try to make more of them come to life this year!
Question: what’s everyone most excited for this year? Do you have any new goals?
2. the most popular recipes of December.
Most popular: One Skillet Creamy Sun-Dried Tomato Chicken and Orzo
This recipe was made VERY last minute, right before heading to New York. I needed one more recipe to fill out our content for the coming week. I’d been toying around with the idea of a creamy skillet chicken with sun-dried tomatoes but wasn’t sure I wanted to make it. But then, at the eleventh hour (literally) I wrote out the recipe and starting cooking. As soon as I started cooking, I knew I had made the right choice. This skillet dinner is SO GOOD. Truly one of those all-in-one dinners that everyone at the table will love. Great for a weeknight, but equally fancy enough to serve up at your next holiday dinner. You can’t go wrong with this warming skillet dinner.
Runner-up: One Pot Creamy French Onion Pasta Bake
This one has been a long-time favorite. There’s nothing not to love. Think French onion soup…but with the addition of pasta, creamy sauce, and melty cheese. The true secret? A little bit of wine, to keep those classic French onion soup flavors. Every last bite is delicious.
Also have to mention: Pull-Apart Garlic Butter Bread Wreath
Soft, buttery, garlicky, and perfectly salted (salted butter is KEY). I’m talking roll your eyes back and eat all the bread before you even look at dinner, kind of delicious. Dramatic, but true.
3. Favorites from the Anthropologie 25% off home sale…
4. favorite questions of the week.
q: are you planning on producing more cookbooks?
a: Yes. There will be more cookbooks!
q: what’s your favorite instant pot recipe?
a: from the book… I love the Instant Chicken Gumbo, the French Onion Soup, and the mashed potatoes. From the blog… I’m currently pretty obsessed with my Instant Pot Pesto Zuppa Toscana.
q: do you plan on doing a cookbook tour for HBH Super Simple?
a: Yes, we are working on putting together a small tour for the spring. What cities should I travel to?
5. newest videos.
One Pot Chicken and Sage Dumplings…the coziest bowl of creamy soup for snowy January nights.
Sweet and Savory Cheesy Bacon Wrapped Pastry Twist…salty + cheesy + a touch spicy. And just a bit addictive.
6. currently loving and wanting.
loving…this serum by Vintner’s Daughter and this cream by Augustinus Bader (mixed with my go-to face oil by Biossance). Both are pricey, but I have been using each almost two weeks and have noticed a HUGE difference in my skin.
loving…this cozy sweater. It. Is. So. Soft!
wanting…this cozy and affordable wool coat.
loving…Violet Grey. So many beauty products, complete with info on how to use them and editor’s notes as well. SO HELPFUL.
wanting…to try out this setting powder. A makeup artist used it on me and I’ve been wanting it ever since.
loving…this basic sweatshirt. I have been living in this recently.
7. a few links i am loving…
the ultimate Trader Joe’s clean eating shopping list…healthy or not, these sound delicious.
bartenders have the best dry January advice…if you love a cocktail, but need a break after the holidays.
artist Zoë Buckman’s Brooklyn loft…the most creative, pretty home.
7 areas to clean and purge for the new year…if you need to start the year fresh.
what happens to your body when you cut out processed foods…get ready for an energy boost.
Karlie Kloss travel beauty routine…is so good.
9 green recipes that you’ll actually want to eat…healthy, but delicious and all so colorful.
the 20 top-rated hand creams on Amazon…all under $20.
28 veggie sandwiches to make this week…lunch just got so much better.
inside Tan France’s Salt Lake City home…that closet though.
Cameron Diaz had a baby…now we need a photo.
7 winter work outfits that work every time…just in case if you need some outfit inspo.
8 ways to not look hungover…if you are still recovering from the holidays.
the Bon Appétit test kitchen’s gear of the year…buying that food coloring.
the top baby names of 2019…I’d pick Emery for a girl and Elijah for a boy. You?
8. What I am Ordering from & Other Stories…
9. this week’s dinners…
Tuesday: Slow Roasted Moroccan Salmon (recipe in HBH Super Simple)
Wednesday: No-Guilt Broccoli Fettuccine Alfredo
Sunday Baking: One Bowl Chocolate Chunk Chai Banana Muffins
Finally, check out all the past Nine Favorite Things posts here.