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Blueberry Cornbread Muffins April 19, 2013

Blueberry Cornbread Muffins

Blueberry Cornbread Muffins

Blueberry Cornbread Muffins
with a hint of lime

Ingredients

– 1 1/4 cup GF ground cornmeal
– Just under 1/4 cup ground flaxseed
– 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
– 1 1/2 tbsp honey
– Pinch of sea salt
– 1 egg
– 1 cup unsweetened almond milk (or chilled coconut milk)
– handful of fresh or frozen (de-thawed) blueberries
– juice squeezed from one fresh lime
-olive or canola oil (just enough to lightly coat baking tray)

Method

1) Preheat oven to 425°F. Combine ingredients in large bowl, mixing well.

2) Lightly coat 8 muffin baking tray spaces with olive or canola oil. You can skip this step if you have a non-stick pan. If you don’t have a muffin baking tray, you can use a regular baking tray and pour the mixture into about 8 muffin foil tins.

3) Bake at 425°F for 15-20 minutes. Mine only took 15 minutes. Enjoy hot and place the rest in a sealed container to store in the fridge. The muffins are great chilled as well. The perfect spread to compliment: earth balance organic coconut spread + fresh lime juice + light shake of salt. Enjoy!

Note: If you are serving these to individuals with gluten allergies, make sure that you purchase ground corn flour that is clearly labeled as gluten-free. While corn is naturally free of gluten, some unlabeled varieties may be processed in a facility that also processes wheat products. For those without an allergy or intolerance, any cornmeal is fine but go for one with a GF seal if anyone eating the muffins has celiac to be certain there’s no cross-contamination risk. 

 

Mighty Matcha Morning Smoothie January 26, 2013

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Mighty Matcha Morning Smoothie
with banana & almond 

Ingredients

-1 large sliced frozen banana (peel, slice into 3-4 pieces, & freeze the night before)
-3/4 tsp matcha green tea powder
-1 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk
-1 tsp soaked chia seeds (optional)
-5-6 slices raw, rinsed white mushrooms (just under 1/4 cup)
-1 tsp chopped frozen spinach (optional)

Method

Blend until smooth. Enjoy creamy & cold.

The consistency will change dramatically if you use a fresh unfrozen banana. I very highly recommend using a frozen one for this recipe to achieve the creamy texture. Buy a bunch of bananas, allow them to ripen (they should have “freckles” and smell sweet), peel them, break them into 2-3 inch pieces and freeze them for a creamy, delicious smoothie starter. I usually use about 1/2 to 3/4 of a banana in a given smoothie but in this recipe you’ll need the whole fruit since it is the star of the smoothie (along with the matcha of course).

Chia seeds can be a fun smoothie addition bringing extra nourishing protein & fiber. Just be sure to soak them overnight in water so they won’t be too crunchy and affect the smoothie’s texture. I just added a teaspoon of the soaked seeds here (so a portion of that teaspoon was water). I soak about 2 Tbsp. and keep this to use throughout the week in a sealed glass container in the fridge.

 

Black Bean Salsa Verde Tacos January 25, 2013

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Black Bean Salsa Verde Tacos
with avocado, grapefruit, & lime

After a long cold day, there are some nights when–as much as I love to cook–I really just want to pull something healthy and tasty out of the freezer to heat and enjoy. With high salt, additives, and other less than optimal ingredients in most frozen meals out there, I decided to make my own.

Pictured here are two of my own black bean salsa verde tacos from freezer to hot-on-my-plate in 3 minutes. Topped with fresh avocado slices.

Make your own!

Ingredients
Makes 12 tacos (6 servings)

-12 small corn tortillas
-3/4 lb dried black beans (soak overnight or at least 4 hours)
-2/3 cup frozen corn
-squeezed juice of 1 fresh lime
-1 fresh avocado or your favorite guacamole
-3/4 cup tomatillo salsa
-fresh cilantro to taste (unless you hate cilantro–some love it, some hate it)
-squeeze juice of 1/4 fresh grapefruit (optional)
– 1/2 scoop PlantFusion Unflavored Protein Powder (optional)

Method

1) Rinse beans and soak overnight (or at least 4 hours). Drain soaked beans and bring beans to a boil (using enough waters to cover the beans) then simmer for 1 hour until soft. Rise cooked beans and drain water.

2) Combine cooked beans and all remaining ingredients (except tortillas) in large bowl and blend with an immersion blender.

3) Take a few tortillas (3-4) at a time, moisten with just a few drops of water, and microwave for 30 seconds to soften. Scoop approx 2 tbsp of your puree into each softened tortilla so that it is full but can still close.

4) Wrap filled tortillas in wax paper to prevent from freezing together or space them out so that they do not touch within sealed tupperware that can be used in your freezer. Freeze tacos immediately to keep them fresh.

5) Take out your delicious tacos as desired, remove all wax paper, and heat on a microwave-safe ceramic or glass plate for 2-3 minutes until fully cooked.

6) Enjoy! I love to top them with fresh avocado or fresh tomatillo salsa.

 

Savory Potato Apple Soup December 16, 2012

Savory Potato-Apple Soup topped with a twist of black pepper and chopped ambrosia apple pieces.

Savory Potato-Apple Soup
with lemon & garlic

Mellow yet tangy–potato & tart apple pair playfully in this cozy soup. Serve it hot topped with fresh chopped apple slices. I suggest using an apple with a sharper, tarter flavor such as an Ambrosia or Jazz apple. Granny Smith would work as well (just avoid a purely sweet apple such as a Red Delicious).

Ingredients
Makes 6 servings 

-~1 lb potatoes (red new potatoes or small russets will work fine)
-3 Tart apples (such as Ambrosia or Jazz)
-4 cups low-sodium vegetable broth
-Juice of 2 fresh lemons
-10 garlic cloves (peeled & chopped)
-3 shallots (peeled & chopped)
-2 Tbsp apple cider vinegar (If you don’t have this, add 1 Tbsp brown spicy mustard instead)
-Pinch of cloves
– 2 Tbsp olive oil (use for roasting potatoes & sautéing garlic)
-1/2 cup water
– 2 Tbsp chopped green onion (optional)
-Pinch of rosemary (optional)
– Salt & pepper to taste (as topping–not mixed into soup)

Method

1) Preheat oven to 350°F. Rinse and chop potatoes into bite-sized pieces. Place chopped potatoes in a large baking tray with 1 Tbsp olive oil. Mix well so that all pieces are coated in the oil. Bake for 40 minutes or until tender at 350°F, stirring every 10 minutes.

2) While potatoes are cooking, peel and chop garlic & shallots. Place on saucepan on stove top and sauté in 1 Tbsp. olive oil, stirring frequently until ingredients have browned slightly. Add a few spoonfuls of your vegetable broth as needed to keep ingredients moist rather than adding more oil.

3) Rince and chop 3 ambrosia apples. Reserve 1/2 apple chopped for soup topping. Add the rest into a large pot on the stove top along with the 4 cups of vegetable broth and 1/2 cup water. Add in all remaining ingredients to your soup pot (other than ingredients reserved for topping), and bring to high heat. Add in your garlic & shallots.

4) Carefully remove roasted potatoes from oven and add to your soup pot. Reduce heat to low. Using an immersion blender, blend all ingredients until soup becomes smooth.

5) Serve hot with chopped apple pieces on top. Add a pinch of salt and pepper on top as desired. Store extra in the fridge to use within the next few days or in the freezer to de-thaw and enjoy weeks or even months later!

Enjoy! Note, I did NOT peel the apples or potatoes because I felt they enhanced the soup’s flavor and texture (and added fiber!). Apples and potatoes are part of the “Dirty Dozen” so these are good items to buy organic.

 

Buckwheat Banana Gingerbread December 9, 2012

Rich Buckwheat Banana Gingerbread

Rich Buckwheat Banana Gingerbread

Buckwheat Banana Gingerbread
with walnuts & fresh ginger

Ingredients

1 1/2 cups Arrowhead Mills Organic Buckwheat flour
1 1/2 Tbsp fresh grated ginger
1/3 cup molasses
1/4 cup brown sugar
3 ripe bananas
1 Tbsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground cloves
1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 Tbsp coconut oil
1 cage-free egg
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking soda
2 Tbsp non-dairy milk (I used unsweetened vanilla almond milk)
1/4 cup chopped walnuts (optional)

Method

1) Preheat oven to 350°F. Combine ingredients (all except buckwheat flour, nuts, & ground spices) in large bowl. You can use a mixer or a hand blender to mix the fresh grated ginger in well with the other ingredients.

2) Mix in the flour and spices until all ingredients are well blended. Mix in nuts using a large spoon (or sprinkle chopped nuts on top of bread batter in pan).

3) Pour mixture into bread pan and bake at 350°F for 40-45 minutes. Test the bread with a toothpick of fork to make sure that full baked.

This was a really fun bread to make. I was craving gingerbread and have been wanting to try something that would complement buckwheat flour (a gluten-free alternative to wheat–which is actually not related to buckwheat despite their similar names–with a distinct nutty taste). Gingerbread & buckwheat paired beautifully together. I really wanted to try this with applesauce but only had bananas on hand so decided to give them a try. Not bad and makes a great bread for those who would enjoy a more complex flavor than traditional banana bread but with some of the light banana sweetness. Enjoy!