Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Quinoa Salad with pears, spinach and chickpeas


If you haven't yet visted the Gluten Free Goddess website yet, I highly suggest you do. I'm not gluten free and don't plan on ever going gluten free, but she has some amazing real food recipes that cannot be passed up. Such as this salad- the pears and apples are so sweet it gives a great contrast to the quinoa and spinach. A great summer salad!

Quinoa Salad Recipe with Pears, Baby Spinach and Chick Peas in a Maple Vinaigrette
*Recipe from Gluten Free Goddess

1-2 cups cooked quinoa (I use rice cooker, otherwise follow directions on box)
2 handfuls of organic baby spinach leaves, washed, drained (I used a full package of organic girl)
1 large ripe pear, washed, stemmed and cored, cut into pieces
1 sweet apple, sliced into pieces
1/2 cup chilled chick peas, rinsed, drained
2 tablespoons fresh chopped parsley
Sea salt and fresh ground pepper, to taste
A handful of pecans, pan toasted and salted to taste
Feta Cheese, crumbled

Maple Vinaigrette Dressing:

4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
3 tablespoons golden balsamic vinegar
2 tablespoons pure maple syrup

Fluff quinoa with a fork and scoop into a large salad bowl.

Add the baby spinach, pear, apple, chick peas, and chopped parsley to the quinoa and fluff.

Whisk together the vinaigrette, pour it over the quinoa salad and toss gently. Season to taste with sea salt and ground pepper.

Just before serving, add the toasted pecans and feta and lightly combine.

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Whole Wheat Puff Pancakes


I pinned this recipe the other day for German Pancakes from Real Mom Kitchen and knew I had to try them. They were very similar ingredients to my Cheesy Bacon Popovers (only sweet) so I was pretty confident I could make them with whole wheat flour. And they are delicious. Just top with a little maple syrup or fresh fruit. I like to add a bit of sweetener to the batter since I'm not adding much to the fresh fruit. They don't look quite as pretty as the all purpose flour version, but they taste great and are better for you.

Whole Wheat Puff Pancakes

1 cup whole wheat flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup milk
6 eggs
1/4 cup butter melted
2 tablespoons honey or sucanat
1 teaspoon vanilla
Zest of one orange

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Blend together flour and salt. Whisk in milk and eggs until smooth. Stir in melted butter, honey, vanilla and orange zest.

Grease two muffin tins (I like to use coconut oil) and fill tins half way with batter. This recipe should make 15-18 pancakes.

Bake in preheated oven for 15 minutes.

Pancakes will puff up and then fall down, just place your fruit in the middle, sprinkle with a little sucanat and enjoy!


*recipe modified from Real Mom Kitchen

Saturday, May 19, 2012

{Old Fashioned} Popcorn

Like most of the American population, we love to eat popcorn when watching movies.

While air popped corn is great, sometimes it's fun to make old fashioned stovetop popcorn.

The boys love to help and they get so excited when the kernels finally start popping.

I used to make it with canola oil, but since I've switched to unrefined oils, I've started using good old fashioned bacon grease.

It gives the popcorn a great flavor so no need to add additional butter, just toss with salt and some fresh grated parmesan and enjoy!













Old Fashioned Popcorn

2 spoonfuls of bacon grease
1/4 cup organic non GM corn
Sea salt
Parmesan, grated (optional)

Put bacon grease and popcorn in saucepan and cover. Heat over medium heat, gently moving pan across the burner for 4-5 minutes or until popcorn pops.

Continue moving pan back and forth so the corn does not burn. Once kernels have slowed popping, turn off heat and let sit to pop remaining kernels. Sprinkle with salt and parmesan cheese.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Simple Strawberry Spinach Salad


This is one of my favorite salads and it's so easy to make. Just toss with a raspberry vinaigrette or poppyseed dressing (this homemade poppyseed dressing is SO good!)

Spinach
Strawberries, sliced
Almonds, sliced
Red Onions finely chopped (optional)

Organic Raspberry Vinaigrette OR
Homemade Poppyseed Dressing

Friday, May 11, 2012

No Bake Cookies



These are my husband's favorite cookies. I knew that if I couldn't find a way to make these using real ingredients, I would fail to have him on board with the whole "real food" thing. He's already concerned that he'll be eating tofu with a side of cardboard when he comes home...

Anyway, these cookies were easier than I thought they'd be- in fact they actually set up every time using honey. With sugar I always failed miserably- either I undercooked and they didn't set up or I overcooked and they were dry and crumbly. I've had success every single time with this one!

No Bake Cookies

1/3 cup butter or coconut oil (I prefer coconut oil)
1/2 cup milk
1 cup honey
1/4 cup cocoa
1/2 cup peanut butter (the real kind- the only ingredient should be peanuts!)
1 teaspoon vanilla
3 cup oats

In a saucepan over medium heat, combine butter, milk, honey and cocoa. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly, and boil 1-2 minutes. If you choose to use coconut oil, which I think gives it a better flavor, heat it for less time, just until it starts to boil up the pan, but don't let it boil over.

Turn off heat and stir in peanut butter. It will take longer for real peanut butter to melt since it's stored in the fridge, so I like to keep the pan on the warm burner, but with the heat off. Stir the peanut butter until mostly melted, then remove pan from heat, and stir in vanilla and oats until well mixed.

Drop by spoonfuls onto parchment lined cookie sheet and refrigerate or freeze until set (about 10 minutes).

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Fresh Tomato Soup


I had quite a few tomatoes in my bountiful basket and had to find a way to use them up quick. Fresh tomato soup was the perfect solution. This recipe comes from Back to Her Roots. My boys loved it and so did I.

1 tablespoon olive oil
1 small onion, diced
2 gloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons whole wheat flour
3 cups chicken broth
5-6 large tomatoes, quartered
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
2 tablespoons fresh chopped basil
Salt and pepper
1/4 cup milk

Heat olive oil and saute onions. Stir in garlic. Add butter and melt. Whisk in flour and cook for 1 minute. Slowly whisk in chicken broth. Add tomatoes vinegar, basil, salt and pepper (I couldn't find any fresh basil- but used dried basil and italian seasoning- not as great as fresh, but still tasty).

Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer 10 to 15 minutes or until tomatoes are tender. Remove from heat and stir in milk. Pour soup into blender or food processor or use an immersion blender until smooth.
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