Friday, December 15, 2017

The Jar of Applesauce in My Fridge :)

I've been keeping an eye on the (mostly) full jar of applesauce in my refrigerator.
I can't remember why I opened it and only used such a small amount.
I wanted to use it before something starts growing in it.
Muffins...that's a good idea!
So I googled "muffin recipes using applesauce"...
and I landed on Mel's Kitchen Café :)
Mel lives in Idaho with her husband, 5 children and numerous animals.
Thanks, Mel, for this easy and tasty recipe!
I tweaked the original recipe in three ways...
I used all organic ingredients.
I used a combination of unbleached white flour and sprouted Spelt flour.
I used unsweetened vanilla almond milk.
Here we go with the recipe :)
 
The finished product!
 

Cranberry Oat & Applesauce Muffins

Ingredients
Use organic whenever possible :)
 
*1 cup of rolled oats
*1 cup of unsweetened applesauce
*1/2 cup of unsweetened vanilla almond milk (or milk of your choice)
*1 large egg
*1 teaspoon of vanilla
*4 tablespoons of melted coconut oil (or butter)
*1/3 cup of Sucanat (raw whole cane sugar)
*1/2 cup of unbleached white flour
*1/4 cup of sprouted Spelt flour
*1 teaspoon of baking powder
*1/2 teaspoon of baking soda
*1 teaspoon of cinnamon
*1/4 teaspoon of sea salt
*1/2 cup of dried cranberries (or raisins)
 
Peeking in the oven to check the progress :)
 
Directions
 
*Preheat your oven to 375 degrees.  Prepare a 12-cup muffin tin with liners...
or grease the muffin cups with coconut oil.
 
*In a medium bowl, stir together the oatmeal, applesauce, milk, egg, vanilla,
melted coconut oil and sugar.
 
*In a large bowl, combine the flours, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, salt and cranberries.  Make a well in the center...and pour in the applesauce mixture.  Blend the two mixtures...but don't overmix.
 
*Place the batter into your muffin cups. 
I transferred the batter into a large glass measuring cup for easy "pouring".
 
*Bake for 15-20 minutes until a toothpick inserted into
the middle of a muffin comes out clean. 
Don't overbake :)
 
*Carefully place the muffins onto a cooling rack.
If you used muffin papers, remove them as soon as possible to avoid wet muffin bottoms :)
You can transfer the muffins to a storage container when they are completely cooled.
 
These won't last long!
 
Recipe adapted from www.melskitchencafe.com
 
 
 
 
 


Friday, October 13, 2017

Early Fall Swiss Chard Harvest!

Our little kitchen garden produced well for us this year...and for a long time!
I do believe, however, that we will be tearing it down this weekend :(
It's hard to believe we are closing in on mid-October.
I'm sitting here in my living room...typing away...with the windows and doors open :)
But I digress...
I went out to the garden yesterday afternoon for my final harvesting of Swiss Chard.
We planted several varieties...and I cut many leaves for our supper.
Swiss Chard (like all of the dark, leafy green) cooks down quite a bit.
I needed a whole, big bowl-full for our meal.
 
Here are my luscious leaves...washed and ready to cut!
 
Using a very sharp knife, I cut away the leaves from the tough stems.
I do not cut and cook the stems, as an acid in the stems can be irritating to some people.
I stacked the half-leaves...rolled up the pile tightly...and then sliced the leaves perpendicular to the roll.  This slicing technique is called chiffonade.
 
Chiffonade!
 
Ready to sauté!
 
I used a bit (1 tablespoon) of olive oil to sauté/steam my chard. 
I put a low heat under my pan...added in the olive oil...and then piled in the chard.  It looked like too much for the pan...but I know what will happen to it :)
I tossed the leaves with two wooden spoons...making sure they got a coating of the oil.
Then, I placed a lid over the pan to start the "wilting" process.
I checked the chard often, as the wilting does not take long....3-5 minutes.
I tossed the chard a few times...turned off the heat....added the juice of half a fresh lemon...and seasoned with sea salt and pepper :)
**You can use balsamic vinegar or raw apple cider vinegar instead of the lemon.
Any acid will cut the bitterness of the chard.
*You can also sauté some garlic before adding the chard.
 
Ready to serve :)
 

Why I eat Swiss Chard....

#1  I love the taste of it!
If you're new to the world of dark, leafy greens...start out slow.
Experiment with various cooking methods...and add them to smoothies, soups and stews!
 
#2  Swiss chard is an excellent source of vitamins K, A, C and E.
It is also an excellent source of magnesium, manganese, potassium, iron and fiber.
 
#3  Swiss chard contains plant nutrients that may be cancer protective to the digestive tract.
 
#4  Swiss chard is great for bone health!
It offers a good non-dairy source of calcium and magnesium.
Additionally, vitamin K activates a major protein found in bone structure.
 
#5  Swiss chard is great for vision health!
The beta-carotene in Swiss chard (which is converted into vitamin A) lowers the risk of developing cataracts.
 
#6  The antioxidants lutein and zeaxanthin protects against macular degeneration. 

Enjoy the nourishment of Swiss chard :)

 
 
 


Sunday, October 8, 2017

What I Ate Today!

I thought it would be fun to share what I ate today!
Today is Sunday...offering me the opportunity to take more time preparing my food.
My breakfast this morning was very typical...a smoothie and some additional protein.
 
Using my trusty Vitamix, I combined coconut/almond milk, plant-based protein powder, glutamine powder (for GI tract health), frozen mixed fruit, fresh banana, ground flaxseed, romaine lettuce leaves, almond butter and coconut water. 
 
The almond butter and the romaine leaves made the smoothie so frothy :)
 
 
I finished off breakfast with some of my homemade chicken breakfast sausage. 
I was especially hungry this morning...so I ate both patties :)
Now on to lunch...
 
I'm not a huge red meat eater; but I live with someone who favors it.
So...we put together a pot roast dinner to share today :)
I included creamy Yukon potatoes, multi-colored carrots, onion and baby Bella mushrooms.
It was as tasty as it looks!
We ate a late lunch...so supper for me was on the light side.
 
I placed two romaine leaves, one small avocado and some cherry tomatoes on an Ezekiel sprouted grain tortilla.  I seasoned with sea salt, pepper and basil.
I tend to be the hungriest earlier in the day.
I was quite satisfied with this healthy carb and healthy fat supper!
 
So there you have it...my meals on this October Sunday!
Real Food for Real Health :)
 
 


Monday, August 28, 2017

By request...Zucchini Baked Goods!

I recently posted a picture on my NOURISH Facebook page of my zucchini brownies and cookies.  We've grown some zucchini this summer...and I'll be darned if I'm going to let them go to waste :)
It was requested that I post the recipes for these two goodies.
Of course I said..."You bet!"


Zucchini Surplus Brownies
These moist brownies (on the left) have become a family favorite!
Use organic ingredients whenever possible :)

>Combine thoroughly in a large bowl:
*1 cup of unbleached flour
*3/4 cup of whole wheat or Spelt flour
*1/3 cup of baking cocoa (unsweetened)
*1/2 teaspoon of baking soda
*1/2 teaspoon of sea salt

>Stir into the flour mixture:
*2-21/2 cups of peeled and grated zucchini

>Combine thoroughly in a separate bowl:
*1 beaten egg
*3/4 cup of raw sugar...such as Sucanat
*3/4 cup of brown sugar, packed
*1/2 cup of plain, full-fat yogurt
*1/2 cup of melted coconut oil (combine quickly :)
*1 teaspoon of pure vanilla

>Stir the egg/yogurt/oil mixture into the flour mixture and blend.
>Spread the batter into a coconut oil-greased 9 x 13 baking dish.
>Sprinkle the batter with 1 cup of dark chocolate chips.
>Bake in a 350 degree preheated oven until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean...about 35 minutes.
#theseareaddictive

*Recipe adapted from Simply in Season by Mary Beth Lind & Cathleen Hockman-Wert


Zucchini Cookies
The combination of raisins, walnuts, cinnamon and ground cloves is so tasty :)

>Combine thoroughly in a large bowl:
*1 1/2 cups of whole wheat or Spelt flour
*1 cup of unbleached flour
*1 1/2 teaspoons of baking powder
*1 teaspoon of cinnamon
*3/4 teaspoon of sea salt
*1/2 teaspoon of ground cloves

>Stir into the flour mixture:
*1-1 1/2 cups of peeled and shredded zucchini

>In a separate bowl, cream together:
*3/4 cup of very soft/melted butter
*1/2 cup of raw sugar...such as Sucanat
*1/2 cup of brown sugar, packed
*Add in 1 egg...and beat until fluffy :)

>Combine the creamed mixture with the flour/zucchini mixture.
>Add in 3/4 cup of raisins and 3/4 cup of chopped walnuts.  Stir well to mix.
>Drop onto cookie sheets lined with parchment paper.  Greasing your hands with a bit of coconut oil will enable you to easily form your dough balls.  You can flatten them with the back of a fork.
>Bake these cookies as soon as they are mixed.  If the batter sits, it will get watery.
>Bake in a preheated 375 degree oven for 10-12 minutes.  I switch the oven rack positions of my cookie sheets at the halfway mark.  That seems to produce more evenly baked cookies that are browned just right!

**This recipe makes 2-3 dozen cookies...depending on the size.

Recipe adapted from Simply in Season by Mary Beth Lind & Cathleen Hockman-Wert

Enjoy the summer bounty of zucchini with these popular recipes!


Monday, July 3, 2017

Creamy Broccoli Slaw!

Nothing says crunchy and creamy...and summer...like broccoli slaw!
You can certainly substitute the broccoli slaw with a traditional cabbage slaw :)
The allure here is in the tasty dressing that covers the crunch.
This recipe is easy, delicious and nutritious...
What more can you ask for?
 
This picture does not do the taste justice!
 
Ingredients
Choose organic whenever possible :)
 
*1 large bag of broccoli slaw (12-16 ounces)
 
*1/4 cup of full-fat, plain yogurt
(I used Stonyfield Organic.)
 
*1/4 cup of organic or homemade mayonnaise
(I used Hellman's Organic Roasted Garlic Mayonnaise.)
 
*3 tablespoons raw apple cider vinegar
 
*2 1/2 teaspoons raw sugar
(I used Sucanat.)
 

*1/2 teaspoon of sea salt
 
*black pepper to taste
 
Two Quality Flavor Components!
 
 
Assembling the Slaw
 
*Blend all of the dressing ingredients until you have a super-creamy mixture :)
*Pour the dressing over your slaw blend...and incorporate it with a fork.
*Chill for at least 30 minutes before serving.
 
Optional Slaw Additions
 
*slivered almonds
*cashews
*raisins
*water chestnuts
*chopped green onion
 
I would make this again in a heartbeat :)
 
Recipe adapted from www.eatingwell.com
 


Tuesday, June 13, 2017

5 Ingredient No-Bake Granola Bars!

Hey kids!  As promised in my you tube video...here's the recipe for those easy and yummy granola bars :)  I've been putting them in my husband's lunch...and he's loving them!
I believe that I mentioned in the video that I put pecans in them.  Actually, they were almonds.
But I think any kind of nut or seed would work well :)

Here are the 5 basic ingredients!
You will need:
*1 full cup of pitted dates (I used medjool.)
*1/4 cup of honey
*1/4 cup of creamy, salted peanut butter with no added sugar
*1 cup of chopped unsalted almonds
*1 1/2 cups of rolled oats
**Optional Ingredients: chocolate chips, raisins, coconut, sunflower seeds, etc.

Now you're ready to....
1.  Place your chopped almonds and rolled oats on a cookie sheet and toast them in a 350 degree oven for 10-15 minutes. 
**Allow the oats and nuts to cool before blending all of the ingredients.

2.  Process the dates in a food processor until a "ball" of dates is formed.

3.  Place the oats, nuts and dates into a large mixing bowl.

4.  Place the honey and peanut butter in a small saucepan over a low heat. 
You want the 2 ingredients to warm and blend into an easily pourable mixture :)

5.  Pour the honey and peanut butter over the oat mixture...and mix well!
I used a fork to blend in all of the dates...and achieve an even mixture of all the ingredients.

6.  Line a square baking dish with parchment paper. 
Now spoon the complete mixture into the pan...
and press it down evenly into the pan.
**I put some coconut oil on my hands to make this job easier :)

7.  Cover the dish with wax paper...and place it in the fridge for at least an hour.

8.  Remove from the fridge and lift the granola square out of the pan...and off of the paper.
**I let my bars sit in the fridge overnight. 
The whole square lifted easily off of the parchment paper.

9.  Using a large knife, cut your bars any size you wish.
**I am storing my bars in a covered container in the fridge...
but they are going fast!

If you cut the square into 10 bars...each bar will provide 4 grams of fiber and
6 grams of protein!

Great for a snack on-the-go!

Recipe credit goes to www.minimalistbaker.com

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Traditional Indian Dal...a stew with flair!

Dal is an Indian stew made with lentils, veggies and some choice spices.
I think it's yummy!
Indian dishes are often spiced with cumin and turmeric.
It is the combination of beans and veggies, these spices...
and creamy coconut milk...that make this dish a nice change from the ordinary :)
I thought I would show you the finished product first!
The recipe is really quite quick and easy.
This type of dish freezes nicely :)
On with the directions...
 
 
Here are some of the ingredients...list and amounts to follow :)
Use organic whenever possible.
 
Here are some more ingredients!
 
And here are the rest of the ingredients!
 
 
You will need....
*1 tablespoon of virgin coconut oil
*3/4 teaspoon of ground cumin
*3/4 teaspoon of ground mustard
*1/2 cup of diced onion
*1 large, minced garlic clove
*1 teaspoon of ground turmeric
*1 teaspoon of (additional) ground cumin
*1 large, diced carrot
*3 medium, cubed red potatoes
*1 1/4 cups of uncooked (rinsed and drained) red lentils
*3 cups of water
*7 ounces (1/2 can) of coconut milk...usually found in the ethnic aisle
*1 cup of chopped tomatoes
(I used a can of Kroger's roasted diced tomatoes, drained.)
*1 teaspoon of sea salt
 
Directions...
1.  In a small stock pot, heat the coconut oil over a medium heat.  Add the 3/4 teaspoons of cumin and mustard...and sauté for one minute.
2.  Add in the onion and garlic...and sauté until the onion is soft...about 4 minutes.
3.  Now add in the turmeric, the additional cumin, carrots and potatoes...and sauté
a few more minutes.
4.  Add in the lentils, water, coconut milk and tomatoes...stirring well to combine.  Bring to a boil, cover and simmer for about 45 minutes.  You'll want the lentils to cook and soften...but you don't want them to completely fall apart. 
*Red lentils will cook up more thoroughly than green lentils.
5.  Season with the sea salt when you are finished :)
 
Can't you just smell it??
 
All done cooking!
 
Meanwhile...in another pot...cook up some organic brown rice...
And there you have it...a cozy stew full of nutrients and energy-boosting carbs!
Enjoy :)
 
Recipe adapted from...
The Whole Life Nutrition Cookbook
by Alissa Segersten & Tom Malterre, MS, CN