Saturday, July 19, 2014

Black Raspberry Picking and a Yummy Crisp

The kids and I went black raspberry picking at a local farm this week.  We are all about u-pick farms and try to do as many as we can each year including black raspberries, red raspberries, blueberries, strawberries, and apples.  I think I had the most fun on this trip as the kids quickly got tired of being poked and scratched by all the thorny bushes but I would still call the day a big success.  We got lots of black raspberries. Enough to snack on, freeze some, and make a yummy crisp for dessert!


As always, I now turn to Pinterest when I am in need of a certain kind of recipe.  I found this great recipe for a peach (which we also had laying around) and black raspberry crisp.  It was super easy to throw together and made the house smell so good.



After dinner tonight, we topped it with some vanilla ice cream and it was de-lish!!!! I just love all the fresh fruits and veggies that come with summer time!


Peach and Black Raspberry Crisp

Fruit Portion:
6 medium to small size peaches (or 4 large ones)
1/2 pint black raspberries
2 T. corn starch
1/3 c. sugar
1/4 t. cinnamon

Crisp Topping:
1/2 c. room temperature butter
1/2 c. flour
1 c. light brown sugar
1 c. old fashioned oats
1/4 t. cinnamon

Method:
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Peel and slice peaches. Mix corn starch, sugar, and cinnamon. Toss sugar mixture with peaches and black raspberries. Put fruit mixture into 9×9 pan.

In a mixing bowl, mix thoroughly (with two hands) the butter, flour, brown sugar, oats, and cinnamon together. Cover peaches and black raspberries with oat topping by crumbing the topping over the fruit.

Bake for about 35 minutes or until the crisp topping is a golden brown and the fruit juices are bubbling. Enjoy alone or add some vanilla ice cream!

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Happy Easter!

Happy Easter from my kitchen....to yours!!!






Sunday, March 16, 2014

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Creamy Spinach Artichoke Dip

A fellow Paleo friend shared this recipe with me last week.  When I first read the recipe I was a bit skeptical. I honestly didn't think it would be possible to make a good tasting spinach artichoke dip WITHOUT using mayo and cheese! I already had some raw cashews on hand so I was ready for the experiment.  I'm all about healthy eating right now so I was anxious to try it.  

The results?  It was pretty darn good!!! I first tried eating it with cucumber slices (because corn chips are not Paleo or good for you) but it just wasn't the same.  I needed to splurge a bit and dip with some good, salty chips. We have to cut ourselves a little slack, right? Hey, at least the spinach dip was healthy!  

The cashew cream was super easy to whip up with a food processor and I'll definitely be making this again soon.

Thanks for the recipe, Katie!!!


Creamy Spinach-Artichoke Dip (Paleo and Vegan)
Source: Paleo Spirit

Ingredients

- 2, 10 ounce boxes frozen, chopped spinach
- 2, 14 ounce cans or jars of artichoke hearts
- 1 T. extra-virgin olive oil (I used extra)
- 1 small onion, diced (about 1 cup)
- 2 or more garlic cloves, minced
- 1 1/2 t. sea salt
- 1 t. onion powder
- 1/2 t. garlic powder
- 1/2 t. black pepper
- 1/4 - 1/2 t. cayenne pepper (to taste)
- 1 T. lemon juice
- 1 1/2 - 2 c. (approximate) cashew cream*

Instructions

1.  Defrost the spinach and squeeze out the excess water. Set aside.
2.  Drain and roughly chop the artichokes.
3.  Saute the onions in the olive oil until translucent, about 10 minutes. Add the minced garlic and cook for another minute.
4.  Stir in the chopped artichokes, salt, onion powder, garlic powder, black pepper, and cayenne and heat through.
5.  Add in the spinach and lemon juice and stir until heated through.
6.  Stir in the cashew cream*.

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*How to Make the Raw Cashew Cream

Ingredients

- 1 c. raw cashews (whole cashews, not pieces)
- fresh, filtered water

Instructions

1.  Rinse the cashews well, place in a bowl with enough water to cover them by about an inch. Cover the bowl and soak the cashews for a MINIMUM of two hours but preferable overnight.
2.  Drain the cashews, rinse under cold water and place in a food processor with 3/4 c. of fresh, filtered water. Process on high for several minutes, stopping to scrape down the sides, until you have a very creamy texture. You can add up to 1 c. of water, depending on the consistency you like.

Makes about 1 1/2 to 2 c. raw cashew cream.

Sunday, March 9, 2014

Guilt Free Chocolate "Ice Cream"

My kids love eating ice cream after dinner. They don't have it too often around here as we try to keep it as a special treat. While we were eating dinner, I told the kids we were going to have some "healthy ice cream" tonight and they were so excited and all for it!  

We've made "ice cream" before out of frozen bananas but this recipe has a little different twist. Adding in some almond butter and cocoa powder for a chocolate version.

The kids were anxious to help create this concoction and their bowls were completely empty within minutes!


Kid tested...mom approved!!!



Guilt Free Chocolate "Ice Cream"
Source: www.isavea2z.com

4 or 5 frozen bananas
1 T. almond butter
1 T. unsweetened cocoa powder
1 T. (or more) coconut milk

Cut up bananas and freeze them overnight or longer. Put the frozen bananas into your food processor and mix until you see finely shredded banana pieces. Add almond butter, cocoa powder, and 1 T. coconut milk.  Add in more coconut milk until it's the consistency you want. Serve immediately.

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Healthy Spaghetti

I discovered something new tonight....spaghetti squash. Why have I never cooked with this before?!?! It was so easy to prepare and once it's fully cooked, it just peels off in strands that look just like spaghetti.  It definitely holds true to it's name SPAGHETTI squash.

So tonight I gave it a try, not sure of what to expect. Spaghetti squash has a naturally buttery flavor and the texture completely fooled my taste buds.  I did not miss the standard, highly processed, pasta noodles that I would normally serve with spaghetti sauce. I loved it and can't wait to find other recipes to use this wonderful squash in!


This is what it looks like after it's been roasted.  I took a fork and the "spaghetti" strands just flake off.


It only takes a couple minutes to get all the strands out and onto your plates.  Then top with your favorite spaghetti sauce and be prepared to be fooled.  What a great meal! I'm so excited I discovered the spaghetti squash!


Healthy Spaghetti
Source: Adapted from www.isavea2z.com

1 lb. hamburger or sausage
Jar of spaghetti sauce
Spaghetti squash

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Slice spaghetti squash lengthwise down the center, remove seeds and roast cut-side down for 40-45 minutes.  (You'll know it's done if you can easily poke your fork into it.) Flip cut-side up when roasting is complete and allow to cool slightly before harvesting strands with a fork by scraping with the grain until the squash is cleaned.

Brown hamburger or sausage and drain grease. Add your favorite spaghetti sauce and season with extra Italian seasoning to your liking. Heat through.

Serve warm sauce over the spaghetti squash.

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Paleo Chocolate Chip Cookies


For the last week and a half, I'm proud to say that I've cut out 90% or more of processed foods from my diet. I've noticed great results not only on the scale, but more importantly in my energy level! I've been eating lots of proteins, veggies, fruits, raw nuts, etc. and it's amazing how full I feel throughout the day now.  For instance, instead of sugary cereal, I've been eating eggs with spinach for breakfast. If I get hungry after lunch, I'll snack on some nuts or fruits/veggies and it easily gets me through until dinner time. I've been baking a lot with almond flour and coconut flour as well as making yummy smoothies with organic frozen fruit, bananas, a little honey, and almond milk.

Every now and then I will have a craving for something sweet and that's when I'll grab one of these. I've experimented with several Paleo chocolate chip cookie recipes and this is by far my favorite! They taste great right out of the oven and also freeze well. I'll make a batch, eat one, and put the rest in an air-tight container in the freezer so I can grab one here and there throughout the week.

My daughter will usually help me make these cookies and I had to laugh the first time we made them.  I told her we were making "Healthy Cookies". When I went to pull them out of the oven she said, "Those don't look like cookies!!!!" So don't let the looks of them fool you. They taste great AND are good for you!


Paleo Chocolate Chip Cookies

3 T. Coconut Oil, melted
2 T. Honey
2 t. pure vanilla extract
1 T. unsweetened almond milk
1 c. blanched almond flour
1 1/2 T. coconut flour
1/4 t. Celtic sea salt
1/4 t. baking soda
1/4 c. high quality chocolate chips (I've been using 1/2 dark chocolate and 1/2 carob chips to make them even healthier)

Preheat oven to 350. 

Beat wet ingredients in one bowl. Mix dry ingredients in another bowl.  Mix dry with wet and fold in chocolate. 

Line cookie sheet with parchment and scoop rounds tablespoons onto cookie sheet. 

Bake 9-10 minutes. Cool and store in air-tight container or freeze. Makes 10 cookies.