Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Pumpkin Squares

As you may have noticed from my last few posts, I am very excited for fall. I know I'm jumping a head of myself, school just started. But the flavors of fall are so warm and delicious I can't help it! I had some pumpkin left over from the waffles I made last week. I didn't want it to go to waist so I made these pumpkin bars. They turned out incredible! The original recipe comes from one of my old collage friends, Michele Fluckiger. I did make a bunch of changes including a different frosting, but I think the changes were delicious. I also love this recipe because it's quick, easy, and it makes tons so I was able to share it with a few neighbors. Enjoy this wonderful fall treat.
Pumpkin Bars
2 cups caned pumpkin
1 1/4 cups evaporated cane juice
4 eggs
1 cup applesauce
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
2 cups whole wheat flour, or Barley flour
1/2 teaspoon xantham gum (if using barley flour)
Preheat oven to 350*F. In a small bowl mix together pumpkin, evaporated cane juice, eggs, and applesauce. In a separate bowl combine baking soda, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, flour, and xantham gum. Add wet ingredients and combine well. Pour into greased and floured sheet cake pan, or cookie sheet that has high edges. Bake for 30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. Cool, frost with Clove Spiced Glaze, and sprinkle with extra cinnamon and nutmeg.
Clove Spiced Glaze
1 1/2 cups organic powdered sugar
1/2 tablespoon coconut oil, solid form
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1-2 tablespoons rice milk
In a medium bowl combine all ingredients well. Spread very thinly over pumpkin squares and sprinkle with ground cinnamon and ground nutmeg before glaze dries.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Garlicky Butternut Squash

How is your garden doing? Mine is doing awesome! I have so many squash that are coming, but not quite ready. I'm getting so excited for more experimenting with them! I loved this recipe. My kids liked it too. My little 2 year old would ask for more and more. I was reluctant to give him more because I wanted to have left overs. :] I took it as a compliment that he liked it so much, and yes I did give him as much as he wanted. This really does have a perfect blend of garlic without taking away from the squash itself, and very easy to make for a side dish. You can cook your main dish while this is baking. I hope you enjoy it as much as we did!!
Garlicky Butternut Squash
2 tablespoons dried parsley leaves
3 tablespoon butter, melted (ICBINB)
1 tablespoon dried minced garlic
1 tablespoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
5 cups butternut squash, peeled and cut into 1 inch cubes, 1 medium or 1/2 of a large squash
1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese, optional
Preheat oven to 400*F. In a large bowl, combine the parsley, butter, garlic, and salt. Add squash and toss to coat. Transfer to a shallow parchment lined 2-qt. baking dish. Bake, uncovered, for 40 minutes. At 20minutes remove from oven and stir gently. Put back in oven and continue cooking for remaining 20 minutes or until squash is just tender. Top with cheese, serve warm and enjoy!

Friday, August 27, 2010

Fun Food Find Friday!!

Our fun food find for today is another meal bar, PRO BAR. I know what you are think, why another meal bar? Well I'll tell you. It's because they are so healthy for you and they are great to take in the car, in your purse, the diaper bag, camping, hiking, 72-hour kits, really there are so many reasons to have a few laying around. Besides variety is always good. These bars are a little different than the others that I've shared with you. For one they are bigger, so more calories. This whole berry blast is 370 calories, so perfect for your 72-hour kits! They have a few more nuts in them so more sustainable energy. In fact this bar has 720 mg of omega 3 fatty acid and 1530mg of omega 6 fatty acid. Extremely important to your health, especially if you are stranded or in an emergency situation. The fruit in these bars is a little more chunky. So that can be a good thing or a bad thing. I like it, my little 2 year old picked out the papaya. These are a little more expensive but it is a little bigger of a bar.
You can find these at any grocery store by the protein bars. Costco just started carrying them too, but I haven't compared prices yet. Happy Healthier Eating!

Thursday, August 26, 2010

S'more Cupcakes

These were so extremely delicious!! The idea comes from Wendy Paul and her cook book '10 Gourmet Cupcakes in 10 Minutes'. I think the funnest part about these cupcakes is to see how impressed the adults are and how excited the kids are to eat them. It makes me happy just thinking about their excitement. I hope you have as much fun as I did with this recipe. It's worth it, trust me!
S'more Cupcakes
1 1/2 cup evaporated cane juice
2 cups plus 2 tablespoons LG Flour Mix
1/2 teaspoon salt
6 tablespoons GF cocoa powder
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon xantham gum
2 eggs
1 cup rice milk
GF graham crackers, broken into squares
1 recipe Carob Ganache, cooled so it is thick
In a large bowl, combine evaporated cane juice, flour, salt, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder, and xantham gum. In a separate bowl whisk eggs and rice milk together. Add three cups of the cocoa mixture to the egg mixture and combine.
Preheat oven to 350*F. Pour 1 tablespoon of batter into paper liners in cupcake tin. Place one small sized homemade marshmallow into center. Press the marshmallow down slightly. Bake for 15-18 minutes or until the cupcake springs back when touched. Let cool.
While cupcakes are cooling, place squares of the graham crackers on a cookie sheet. Put one medium sized homemade marshmallow on center of each square. Put cookie sheet into oven. Cook until marshmallows double in size, this will only take one minute. Watch very carefully. On the other squares of graham crackers spread a little of the carob ganache. Place a carob ganache covered square on top of each of the marshmallow covered squares.
When the cupcakes are cooled, spread a small amount of ganache on top of each cupcake (this will help the s'mores to stay put). Then place one s'more on top of each cupcake, serve and enjoy!
Carob Ganache
1 cup low fat heavy whipping cream
1 1/2 cups carob chips
Put carob chips in a bowl. In a medium sauce pan over medium heat, heat whipping cream until it comes to a boil. Remove from heat and pour over carob chips. Stir until chips are melted and mixture is combined well. For thicker Ganache place in fridge to cool. Or just drizzle over desserts.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Wisdom Wednesday!!

School started today for my children. I'm not usually a basket case, but I have been the past few days. I'm usually not stressed either. But I have been the past few days too. With me I don't notice that I'm stressed until it's like this picture and I'm pulling the world behind me, or at least I feel that way. Stress is a funny thing. It really does affect our health a lot more than most people give it credit. Now don't get me wrong some stress is good. Having a little stress gets us to accomplish tasks, finish projects, and so on. What I'm talking about it having too much on your plate. Having to deal with more than what you are used to for a long period of time.
When you are stressed out your body acts like you're in danger and releases hormones that make you breathe faster, increases your heart rate, and gives you that burst of energy you need. The problem comes when that is happening all of the time. If you are stressed for long periods of time it can cause headaches, back pain, intestinal problems, stomach problems, trouble sleeping, and can cause a weakened immune system. If you are already suffering from a health problem increased stress can make the problem worse. Also when you are stressed you make poor judgement choices in the food you eat.
If you have more stress than normal there are ways to help calm your body down. I personally like to take long warm showers. I just sit there with the warm water running on my back, take deep breaths, and think about all of the blessings I have. Take some time for yourself. This is an important one because really if you are stressed out you need to find out why. Figure out where the extra stress is coming from. If you know where it's coming from then you can better problem solve to fix it. Write in a journal. Start a hobby or pick up a old hobby, as long as it's relaxing. Meditate and exercise. Drink more water. Ask for help and talk to someone. Find a way to serve someone. It's amazing the joy that can come from helping others and that helps to relieve your own stress. If one of these doesn't help, try a different one. Just keep trying. Trying to relax and trying to de-stress is the most important thing. So here's to happy healthy de-stressing!!


Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Pumpkin Waffles

I woke up this morning and my kids declared it was waffle day. I thought they had made it up, but sure enough when we turned on the T.V. a kids show was saying, "Happy Waffle Day". So what did we do? We made pumpkin waffles for breakfast. I love these waffles. My mom used to make them on special occasions when I was young. This morning when I was eating them it made me nostalgic for fall. Combined with the apple cinnamon syrup you really can taste the essence of fall. They are so delicious, and very low fat. I know you'll love them!
Pumpkin Waffles
3 cups barley flour, or whole wheat flour
5 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon xantham gum (only add if using barley flour)
3 eggs
1/3 cup organic brown sugar
1 cup pumpkin
1/2 cup applesauce
2 1/2 cups rice milk
Preheat waffle iron. In a large bowl combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, spices, and xantham gum if using barley flour. In a separate bowl, beat eggs with organic brown sugar. Blend in pumpkin, milk, and applesauce. Add pumpkin mixture to flour mixture and stir just until ingredients are moist. Do not over beat. Bake in waffle iron for about 7 minutes. Serve with hot Apple Cinnamon Syrup.
Apple Cinnamon Syrup
1/2 cup evaporated cane juice
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 cup apple cider or apple juice
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 tablespoon butter
In a saucepan, stir together evaporated cane juice, corn starch, and cinnamon. Then stir in apple juice and lemon juice. Cook over medium heat until mixture begins to boil. Boil until the syrup thickens. Remove from heat and stir in the butter until melted. Serve over pumpkin waffles.
For the original syrup recipe go here.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Stuffed Green Peppers

I loved this recipe and so did my children. My 6 year old doesn't like green peppers but he ate this and really liked it! I thought today would be a good time to post this recipe because of all of the peppers that should be ready about now in your garden. And if you didn't plant any they are getting cheaper to buy in the grocery store. Just thinking about this recipe makes me want to make these again for dinner tonight. :] With stuffed peppers I've seen them cut both ways. I think that cutting them lengthwise, like I did in this picture, was the easiest way to stuff and cook them. Just be careful when removing the top of the pepper so you don't remove too much of the pepper. If you remove too much then it won't be in a bowl shape and it won't hold the stuffing as well. No matter what way you cut them they are very delicious.
Stuffed Green Peppers
1 cup water
1/2 cup uncooked quinoa, rinsed
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
2 teaspoons better than bullion
3 large green bell peppers, halved and seeded
1 small onion, diced
1 15 oz can diced tomatoes with garlic and onion
2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
2 teaspoons butter
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1/4 teaspoon Chile powder
1/4 teaspoon dried oregano leaves
1/3 cup Parmesan cheese
Salt to taste
Pepper to taste
In a medium saucepan combine water, quinoa, garlic powder, and better than bullion. Bring to boil, and then simmer for 15 minutes.
Preheat oven to 400*F.
In a large saucepan over medium heat cook onion in butter. Then add diced tomatoes, cumin, Chile powder, oregano, salt and pepper. Simmer until thick, stirring occasionally.
In a pot bring 2 inches of water to a boil. Blanch peppers for 2 to 3 minutes. Set aside in a 9x13 inch parchment lined baking dish.
When tomato mixture is thick add Parmesan cheese and cooked quinoa and combine. Spoon combined mixture into each half of the green peppers. Cover with tinfoil and bake in preheated oven for 25 minutes. Uncover and bake for another 15 minutes or until peppers are al dente. Remove from oven and sprinkle Cheddar cheese on top of each pepper. Return to oven just long enough for cheese to melt, about 5 minutes. Remove and enjoy!

Friday, August 20, 2010

Fun Food Find Friday!!

Our Fun Find for today is Bragg Liquid Aminos. Thanks Molly for asking what it was. I love getting questions. So today I'm answering Molly's question, "what is Bragg Liquid Aminos?". Bragg liquid aminos is a natural soy sauce alternative. It has a great flavor and it really does taste similar to the soy sauce you buy at the grocery store. It is gluten free. It doesn't have preservatives or alcohol and contains 16 amino acids. I use it in any recipe that calls for soy sauce. I also put it on quinoa. When you put in on rice or quinoa, only put a small amount, it is a little strong. When I add it to a recipe I add as much or a little more than called for. Experiment, see how you like it.
You can buy Bragg's at the health food stores.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Lettuce Wraps

The first time I ate at P.F. Chang's was back in the day with my then soon to be husband and his parents. They ordered everything for me. The first thing to come out were their lettuce wraps. I fell in love with them. The crunch of the lettuce with the chicken and rice was simply genius! So of course I told my mom about them. She tried the lettuce wraps also loved them but took it one more step and created her own version. I actually like hers better than the restaurant's. And they're not that hard to make either, don't let all of the ingredients fool you. Try them, you'll love them I know it!!
Lettuce Wraps
2 tablespoons braggs' liquid aminos
2 tablespoons organic brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon rice vinegar
2 tablespoons butter or oil
2 chicken breast fillets
1 cup water chestnuts, minced
3 tablespoons green onion, minced
1 teaspoon garlic, minced
1 head of romaine lettuce
1 -2 cups rice, cooked according to package directions
Special sauce:
1/4 cup water
1 tablespoon rice vinegar
1 tablespoon braggs liquid aminos
1 table spoon ketchup
1/2 tablespoon lemon juice
2 tablespoons evaporated cane juice
Special sauce directions:
Pour all ingredients into small bowl. Stir until cane juice dissolves. Refrigerate sauce until ready to serve lettuce wraps.
Mix organic brown sugar, water, and braggs' liquid aminos together, set aside. Heat 1 tablespoon butter on high and saute chicken breasts for 4-5 minutes per side or until done. Remove chicken from pan and let cool. When you can handle the chicken chop it up into small pieces no bigger than a dime. Add additional tablespoon of butter to the left over butter from the chicken. Then add garlic, water chestnuts, chicken, and onion. Add organic brown sugar/braggs'/vinegar sauce and cook for a couple of minutes.
To eat: spoon a little rice down the middle of one romaine leaf (in the picture I add too much of everything and it was a little hard to eat). Spoon chicken filling on top and drizzle with a small amount of special sauce (a little goes a long way). Roll and eat like a taco and enjoy!!

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Wisdom Wednesday!!

Sugar Addiction
I've talked a lot about sugar. Last week I talked about your blood sugar. I've talked about refined sugar substitutes. On my first Wisdom Wednesday post I talked about the process of refined sugar and then went on to talk about the chemical reaction that sugar has on your brain that makes it addictive. To refresh your memory on that click here. So when I saw this article giving 10 tactics for overcoming your sugar addiction I thought I would touch on the subject again. I really liked his approaches. The only thing that I would change to his article or add to it would be this: when you are trying to get off refined sugars your body can go through withdrawals. I know that sounds funny because you're thinking it's only sugar. But remember it causes a chemical reaction in your brain so your body will crave it. So when you start to get the shakes and your cravings get really intense, grab some protein. The protein will help your body to calm down and your cravings will go away. So remember when you remove sugar from your diet replace it with healthy foods and lots of protein. For the rest of the 10 tactic for overcoming your sugar addiction go here.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Orange Honey Garlic Crock Pot Chicken

Because it was so hot in July I used my crock pot several times. The original recipe I used to get this recipe is for a marinade. But it sounded so good I just had to try changing a few things and making in the crock pot. I loved how it turned out, sweet, a little tangy, with a hint of orange. And you know me I love sweet peppers so I think they make a great addition too, but you don't have to add them.
Orange Honey Garlic Crock Pot Chicken
2 boneless skinless chicken breasts
4 tablespoons braggs' liquid aminos
3 tablespoons honey
3/4 cup orange juice
2 teaspoons minced garlic
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano flakes
1/4 teaspoon paprika
2 tablespoons corn starch
1/2 green pepper, sliced
1/2 red sweet pepper, sliced
1/2 yellow or orange pepper, sliced
1 cup quinoa, cooked according to package directions
In a medium size bowl combine the braggs, honey, orange juice, garlic, oregano, paprika, and corn starch. Place chicken in crock pot and cover with mixture. Cook on high for 5 hours. Remove chicken and slightly shred. Return to crock pot and top with sweet peppers. Cover and cook for another 10 -20 minutes depending on how well done you like your peppers. Stir in peppers before serving on cooked quinoa.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Homemade Hamburgers

These hamburgers are the ones I grew up on, so they come from my mother's amazing kitchen. I think I was 12 the first time she had me mix them up on my own. They are very simple to put together and have wonderful taste and texture. Once you've made these hamburgers you will not go back to just the beef on it's own. They are very delicious!
Homemade Hamburgers

1 pound ground beef
1 egg
1 package ritz crackers, crushed
4 tablespoons dried onion flakes
2-3 tablespoons ketchup
1 teaspoon salt
dash of pepper
In a large bowl combine all ingredients, use plastic gloves if you don't like touching the beef. Form into 4 to 6 patties. Cook on grill until cooked through. Serve on a whole wheat bun with your favorite hamburger toppings.

Friday, August 13, 2010

Fun Food Find Friday!!

Amerlyn Chocolate is our food fun for the day. It is a sugar free, gluten free, dark chocolate. It is very tasty. I haven't used it in very much cooking. We've used it on smores when we didn't have a carob bar handy and they were really good. If you like dark chocolate you'll love this healthier choice.
You can find these at the health food stores in the gluten free sections.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Carob Flourless Cake

I love how this cake finally turned out. This recipe took several tries to get it right, and it was worth it! This cake is so extremely moist and oh so delicious. It isn't too rich or sweet. I love that it has all of the extra fiber from the beans. The pureed strawberries cuts down the taste of the garbanzo beans. I took this to my Aunt for her birthday and stressed to her that it wasn't chocolate, if you think it's a chocolate cake before you bite into it it won't taste the same, and she loved it! I was a little nervous because she is a big chocolate lover. She called me on the phone to ask what it was because she had forgotten it was Carob, and just raved about how yummy it tasted. Really if you get the right carob then it can taste like a dark form of chocolate. So happy healthy cooking with this easy and quick recipe!

Carob Flourless Cake
1 1/2 cups carob chips
1 15 oz garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed well
4 eggs
1 cup evaporated cane juice
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 cup strawberries, pureed
3-4 tablespoons orange strawberry banana juice
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 350*F. Grease and line the bottom of one 9 inch round cake pan with parchment paper. Melt carob chips in double broiler on stove. Combine the beans, pureed strawberries, and eggs in a blender or food processor until smooth. Add the vanilla, juice, baking powder, and cane juice and blend well. Pour melted carob and blend until smooth. Pour mixture into pan. Bake for 40 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool on a wire rack. When cool invert onto a plate. Remove parchment paper and top with Carob Pudding and fresh cut strawberries and enjoy!

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Wisdom Wednesday!!

Blood Sugar

Last month on the Today show they had a segment on blood sugar and how it effects your body and your mood. They were not talking about Diabetics. They were talking about everyone. It really is amazing how much blood sugar effects your body and your mood.
To start off with today I wanted to talk about what blood sugar is. It actually is called glucose. Your body gets glucose from the food that you eat. Not just from the sugar you eat but every food that goes into your body. Your body breaks it down and makes glucose out of it. Some foods it takes your body longer to break down than others. Remember we talked a little bit about gylcemic index? The gylcemic index is a way of measuring how quickly your body breaks down the food into glucose and is absorbed into your bloodstream. Glucose is carried to each of your cells though your bloodstream. Glucose helps your cells to grow and gives them energy. So it's important to your body.
If your blood sugar is too high or too low for long periods of time, it can cause your body harm. Some of the symptoms of your blood sugar being too high include: having to go to the bathroom often, being thirsty all of the time, and losing weight without changing your food intake or exercise routine. Some of the symptoms of your blood sugar being too low include: feeling anxious or being confused, feeling numb in the arms and hands, a shaking or dizzy feeling, being cranky and irritable for no reason, pale or gray skin color, headache, blurred or double vision, tired, sweaty, and being hungry sometimes even after eating a meal. If your blood sugar drops too low a person can lose consciousness or may experience a seizure. If you are having these symptoms often it would be wise to go see your Doctor and get a check up. The only way to truly measure your blood sugar levels is to get it checked out.
The main point that I wanted to bring across today is that when and what you eat are important to your body. And if you know some of these symptoms along with what times and what kinds of food you are eating you can better manage your health. Just as long as you remember to be eating the right kinds of foods. First and most important is to stay away from refined sugars, soft drinks, and things that are not healthy for your body. You could keep a food journal of the foods that you are eating, what times you are eating them, and see how you feel. If you are irritable or really tired in the afternoon maybe your blood sugar or glucose levels are low and you need to eat a healthy snack. It could be you are going too long in between meals. I found it interesting on the segment how they talked about combining different types of food to maintain a more stable blood sugar. One example they use is to combine high-quality carbohydrates with lean protein such as: "an egg-white omelet loaded with veggies for breakfast" or "grilled chicken and peppers in a whole-grain tortilla for lunch". So pay attention to what your body is telling you and what you are putting into your body. Doing this can be a quick fix for a happier and healthier you!! Happy Healthier Eating!


Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Taco Seasoning

I love tacos! I don't care that much for the mixes. I really am trying to rid my self of packets and condensed soups. So when I saw this recipe, I just had to see how I could work with it. I have loved how it has turned out! The first time I mixed up a batch my husband wasn't home so my children said we had to make it when he was home. When I did he like it too! He didn't even add tons of hot sauce to it like he usually does. Which is kind of funny because this mix isn't hot or spicy. If it was my children would not eat it. I think it's the perfect blend and it goes great on Beef or Turkey. My husband said the only difference he could taste between the two is that the Beef one tasted "a little beefier". :] I said, "it's beef it probably should taste beefier." I double this recipe and store it in an air tight container ready to be used.
Taco Seasoning
1/4 teaspoon chili powder
1 tablespoon garlic powder
1 tablespoon onion powder
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano flakes
1/4 teaspoon paprika powder
1 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoons sea salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1 teaspoon cornstarch
In a small bowl, mix together all ingredients well. Store in an airtight container. Two heaping tablespoons of mix equals about one store bought packet.
Turkey Taco's
1 pound Ground Turkey
1 8 oz. can tomato sauce
2 heaping tablespoons of taco seasoning
1 can refried beans
8-10 whole wheat tortillas, or hard corn taco shells, or gluten free tortillas
diced tomatoes
shredded cheese
sour cream
Cook ground turkey on stove until cooked through, drain. Return to heat and add tomato sauce and taco seasoning. Mix well. Cook for a few minutes until turkey and seasoning soak up tomato sauce. Heat refried beans on stove top until warm.
To assemble: take tortilla or hard taco shell, spread a spoonful of refried beans to cover the middle of the tortilla or hard taco shell. Next add one to two spoonfuls of turkey on top. Sprinkle with cheese, top with diced tomatoes, salsa, lettuce, and sour cream. If on a tortilla, roll. Serve and enjoy!

Monday, August 9, 2010

Carob Pudding

I have had a lot of fun experimenting with this recipe. To be honest I had to make it several times to get it where it is today. It was hard to get it to thicken, like a pudding should be. Granted it still isn't as thick as the instant pudding you buy from the store, but it is very yummy and very creamy. The really good thing is with all of the batches that didn't turn out I was able to freeze them in little cups and make 'carob/fudge-cicles' with it. Those were very delicious, my kids loved them too. Beside just eating it on it's own, I've also used this pudding on a few different cakes I'll post later. It really is a nice rich pudding. I hope you like it as much as we do!

Carob Pudding
1 cup evaporated cane juice
5 tablespoons cornstarch
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 cups rice milk
1 cup carob chips
2 egg yolks
2 teaspoons vanilla extract

In a medium sauce pan combine evaporated cane juice and salt. In 1/2 cup of the rice milk mix in the cornstarch. When cornstarch is completely dissolved add to the sauce pan and turn heat on medium. Add remaining rice milk and carob chips. Stir constantly until carob melts and the mixture starts to thicken. Remove from heat. Take a tablespoon of the mixture out and add to the egg yolks and stir, repeat twice. Put mixture back on heat. Slowly add the egg yolks, stirring continually. Cook for another 2 minutes. Remove from heat and add vanilla. Chill before serving, and enjoy!

Friday, August 6, 2010

Fun Food Find Friday!!

As promised, our Fun Food Fun for the day is Nature's Path Organic Pumpkin Flax Plus Granola. I love love LOVE this granola! My kids love it too. If you like to go to Jumba Juice and get their 'breakfast' smoothies that have granola on the top, this is the kind they use too. It has a wonderful flavor and is packed with lots of good things for you including 55% of your daily value of Omega 3's. Sometimes when I get snacky I grab a little bit of this and it help with the cravings.
You can buy this at the health food stores, but it lots cheaper at Costco.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Green Drink

I love "green drink", as we call it in our home. I used to buy Odwalla's form of green drink all the time. Then I decided to make it at home so I could control more of what greens go in it. I love it I have it almost every morning for breakfast. I do share it with my children, but only one glass. It's so funny to me how much they like it and ask for seconds. If the color is a problem for you or your kids try putting it in a dark sippy cup or water bottle, and don't let them see you make it. You will really be surprised at how sweet and yummy this drink really is. One of the important tricks that I've found is that you need to freeze the greens. Well at least I do because I don't have a high powdered mixer. I just have the normal one that my husband and I received when we got married. When they are frozen they blend completely and you don't have little pieces of greens floating around. Also you don't have to add ice that way.
Green Drink
2-3 cups Kale, frozen
2 cups other leafy greens, frozen (I usually use spinach but I have used romaine, Chinese cabbage, and others)
2/3 cup apple juice
1/3 cup pear juice
1/2 cup rice milk
1 banana, peeled
1 cup strawberries, frozen
1/3 cup blackberries
1/2 cup blueberries
2-3 tablespoons honey
Put Kale and other greens into blender. Add rice milk and apple juice. Turn on blender to the highest speed. It will take a few minutes for the greens to blend completely. If your blender starts to struggle add the pear juice or use one of the frozen stems from the kale to push the greens down a little. Once the greens are completely mixed in and smooth, add the banana, berries, and pear juice (if not added before). Blend on high until completely mixed. Once it is all blended taste it before you add the honey, you might not need it. Serve right away and enjoy!
I don't always have fresh berries on hand. If I don't then I just use a frozen medley of blackberries, strawberries, and raspberries. Sometimes I add a whole peeled pair and use what ever juice I have on hand. As long as you are using at least 4 cups of greens to just over 2 cups of fruit you'll be good. Sometimes I even add less fruit and my kids don't notice except for the color is more green than a purple green.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Wisdom Wednesday!!

Fat for Breakfast?!
That is what The Bottom Line's Daily Health News said in their news letter on the 3rd of August. In the news letter they stated that the University of Alabama at Birmingham had conducted a study with mice. They would feed half of the mice a high-fat (45% fat) breakfast and the other half a high-carbohydrate breakfast (10% fat). The mice that were given the high-fat breakfast were given a high-carbohydrate dinner. The ones that were given the high-carbohydrate breakfast were given a high-fat dinner. Both groups did not get lunch so they all got the same amount of calories. Researchers said that they found that eating a high-fat breakfast activated fat metabolism. Those mice had "better metabolic markers--including body weight, glucose tolerance and blood insulin and triglyceride levels." The mice that ate the high-carbohydrate breakfast switched off fat metabolism and actually experienced "weight gain, increased body fat, glucose intolerance and other signs of metabolic syndrome."
Keep in mind that they are not talking about eating bacon and sausage. They are talking about the healthy fats like omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids.
After reading this I thought about what I ate for breakfast and how it made me feel. Most days I have what I call 'green drink' with some granola. (Tomorrow I'll post the recipe for the green drink and on Friday I'll post the granola I eat) On days that I have the green drink I feel full longer, I have more energy, and I don't crave treats (most of the time :]). The greens that I mostly use are Kale and Spinach. In one cup of Kale there is 121 mg of omega-3 fatty acid, and 92.4 mg of omega-6 fatty acid. I usually put in 2 cups or more of Kale in my green drinks. I also put in at least one cup of Spinach. In one cup of Spinach there is 41.4 mg of omega-3 fatty acid and 7.8 mg of omega-6 fatty acid. In the granola I eat there is .7 g of omega-3 fatty acid. I didn't realize how much fat I was really eating at breakfast until I started looking it up after reading their article. So my whole point in sharing what I eat for breakfast is that I agree with this article. It makes since to me. So I suggest taking a look at the food you eat in the morning. See how it makes you feel the rest of the day. Keep a food journal if it will help, especially if you are trying to loose a few extra pounds and always... Happy Healthy Eating!!

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Garlic Steak Marinade

My family ate these steaks so fast I didn't get the chance to take a picture. They were very yummy! Even my children who normally don't like steak ate these with no pleading from me to finish their food. I really didn't change much from the original recipe, found here. Enjoy!
Garlic Steak Marinade
1/4 cup white vinegar
1/4 cup bragg's liquid aminos
3 tablespoon minced garlic
2 tablespoons honey
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 teaspoon worcestershire sauce
1 teaspoon onion powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon liquid smoke flavoring
2 steaks
In a medium bowl mix all ingredients, except for the steak of course. Place steaks in a shallow glass dish and cover with the marinade, turn to coat. Cover and put in fridge for 4 hours and up to 2 days. Every hour I turned my steaks over to make sure they were getting enough soaking on both sides. Cook on grill for 7 minutes on both sides, or until desired doneness. Discard leftover marinade.

Monday, August 2, 2010

Whole Wheat Key Lime Pie Cupcakes

Just over a year ago I saw Wendy Paul on T.V. for the first time. She was introducing her new cup cake cook book, 101 gourmet cupcakes in 10 minutes a day. I had just started cooking with cupcakes so when I saw her I was even more inspired. I bought her cook book that day and I have loved it ever since. If you like to bake with cupcakes you need this cook book. I have spent a lot of time taking her ideas and trying to make up healthier versions. I've made several different ones, some are gluten free and some are not. I'm excited to start baking them again. Here is the first one I'm going to share with you, it does have some things in it that I'm still trying to see if I can change like the sweetened condensed milk. I was talking to a woman the other day that said she knew how to make her own. When I get that recipe I will have to start experimenting with it that's for sure.
I really didn't take pictures of the cupcakes I made all last year because I hadn't thought about this blog yet. But that's okay I don't mind remaking them. :]

Whole Wheat Key Lime Pie Cupcake
2 cups whole wheat flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup sugar
3 eggs
1 cup fat free half and half
8 tablespoons key lime juice
1 can sweetened condensed milk
2 cups heavy whipping cream
1/2 cup organic powdered sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 350*F. In a medium sized bowl combine flour, evaporated cane juice, baking powder, and salt. Next add eggs, half and half, and 4 tablespoons of the lime juice and mix well. In a separate bowl combine the 4 remaining tablespoons of lime juice with the sweetened condensed milk. Pour 2 1/2 tablespoons of batter into 18 pre paper lined cupcakes. Next divide sweetened condensed mixture between the cupcakes, about a tablespoon per cupcake. Then use the batter to fill the cupcakes to 3/4 of the way full. You will have some batter left over. You can make plain lime cupcakes with the left over batter. Cook for 15-20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean or the cupcake bounces back after lightly touching it. Cool on a wire rack.
While they are cooling, in a medium size bowl mix heavy whipping cream until it becomes thick. Then add organic powdered sugar and vanilla. Continue mixing until stiff peaks form. Pour into a zip lock back and close. Cut a hole on one of the corners and squeeze out whipped cream in a circular motion on top of each cupcake. Can top with zest of a lime. Enjoy!