f4ba68c1cbedb0122ea82653afbd56f3b53077b88b4c4a5f31 Uncomplicated Healthy Living: 2015 http://www.freesearchenginesubmission.infoher-libido.com

Saturday, December 19, 2015

Moving To A New Home

I wanted you to know I have moved to a new home.  I will still be giving you healthy recipes, nutritional information and healthy living tips.  It will just be in a new setting.  So come visit my new home at http://easyhealthylivingsolutions.com/.  Also visit an additional site I will be blogging on at http://mc72542.bargainshop.biz/.  Be sure to bookmark them both.

I want to thank you for all your visits to this blog.  Please move with me and visit me in my new home.  Be sure to let me know what you think of it!

Monday, December 14, 2015

Soy Sesame Broccoli Salad Rcipe

Broccoli marinated in heart healthy sesame oil and sesame seeds added on top.  It is not the overdone broccoli and cheese sauce.  This salad adds a new twist to eating broccoli.  It is cool and crunchy.  The marinade gives it a nice tang that compliments the broccoli's flavor.  Want some new dinnerware to serve it on?  Click here. You will find dinnerware or serving pieces to suit your personal style.  Be sure to pin it.  This is a recipe that can be used all year long!


Soy Sesame Broccoli Salad Recipe

16 ounce bunch of fresh broccoli, washed
2 tbsp. sesame oil
2 tbsp. low sodium soy sauce (see note)
2 tbsp. rice wine vinegar
sesame seeds

Cut tops off of the broccoli and separate into bite size pieces.  Peel the fibrous outer layer off of the broccoli stems and cut the soft inner part into slices 1/2" thick.  Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.  Add the broccoli to the boiling water.  Cook for 2 minutes or till broccoli just turns a bright green color.  Immediately drain the broccoli and rinse under cold water to stop cooking process.  You can also plunge it into ice water if that is easier for you.  Allow broccoli to drain.  While the broccoli is draining; combine the oil, soy sauce and vinegar in a small bowl.  Whisk to combine.  Place the broccoli in a bowl with a tight sealing lid or a zip lock bag.  Pour the marinade over the broccoli and toss to combine.  Place the broccoli in the refrigerator for minimum of two hours, shaking the broccoli and marinade around several times.  Before serving sprinkle liberally with sesame seeds. 

Note:  Soy sauce does contain wheat.  It is a source of gluten.  If you are trying to avoid gluten, use tamari instead of soy sauce.  Also, even using the low sodium soy sauce, you have enough salt that none needs to be added.


Friday, December 11, 2015

Root Vegetable Gratin Recipe

Root Vegetable Gratin takes a long time to bake, but, it is worth the wait.  Turnips, parsnips, carrots and potato come together with cheese and veggie broth to become something irresistible.  I served it with a Sesame Broccoli Salad.  You will get that recipe on Monday.  Right now enjoy this veggie gratin.  Be sure to pin it so you don't loose the recipe!  

turnips, parsnips, carrots, turnip recipe, parsnip recipe, vegetarian recipe, gratin

Root Vegetable Gratin Recipe

16 ounces turnips, peeled and sliced 1/8" thick (see note)
4 ounces parsnips, peeled and sliced 1/8" thick (see note)
4 ounces carrots, peeled and sliced 1/8" thick (see note)
1 onion, peeled, sliced 1/8" thick and separated into rings (see note)
2 large russet potatoes, scrubbed and sliced 1/8" thick (see note)
8 ounces swiss cheese, shredded
1 1/2 cup vegetable broth
1/2 cup bread crumbs (you choose what type you wish)
salt and pepper

Take a third of the turnips, parsnips and carrots; arrange them in an even layer in a 9" x 13" baking pan.  Salt and pepper lightly.  Arrange a layer of half of the potatoes.  Then a layer of half of the onion rings.  Salt and pepper lightly.  Cover with a third of the cheese.  Arrange another third of the of the turnips, parsnips and carrots over the cheese.  Again, lightly salt and pepper.  Arrange the rest of the potatoes and onion rings over the turnip layer.  Lightly salt and pepper.  Top with a third of the cheese.  Layer the last of the turnips, parsnips and carrots on top.  Lightly salt and pepper.  Pour the vegetable broth over top of the vegetables.  Cover with foil.  Bake 2 1/2 hours in a preheated oven at 350 degrees.  Remove and uncover.  Top with the rest of the cheese and sprinkle with breadcrumbs.  Return to the oven and bake uncovered for 30 minutes or until browned and veggies are fork tender.  Eat up!

Note:  To speed up prep. you can use a mandolin slicer.  It keeps all your slices even and that results in even baking.  Mandolin slicers can be used for all sorts of prep work.  It speeds things up and makes life easier for you.  Below is a photo of the one I use.

 Want to check it out for yourself?  Click here and order one today!




Monday, December 7, 2015

Curried Cauliflower Soup Recipe

Cauliflower is often viewed as a lowly, humble vegetable.  It doesn't get the same attention as it's cousin kale.  But, adding it to your diet does give you many benefits.  Digestive system support, cancer prevention, antioxidants and inflammation suppression are just a few of the benefits you get from cauliflower.  This soup, that contains cauliflower, is warm and slightly spicy.  It elevates this lowly vegetable.  It also pairs well with my Cranberry Cornbread.  I'm giving you two ways to make it.  One way is vegetarian and the other is vegan.  You make your choice which to use.  Be sure to pin this recipe.  You will want it all winter long!


Vegetarian Curried Cauliflower Soup Recipe

1 cup diced onion
1 clove garlic, chopped
2 cups sliced, raw cauliflower
2 cups vegetable broth
1 tsp. hot madras curry powder
1 cup fat free milk
2 tbsp. butter
2 tbsp. flour (I use spelt flour)
salt and white pepper

Combine the onion, garlic, cauliflower, curry powder and broth in a medium size saucepan.  Bring to a boil and reduce heat to simmer.  Simmer until cauliflower is very soft.  Remove from heat and allow to cool.  Pour cauliflower into a blender and puree until smooth.  You may need to do this half of the cauliflower at a time.  Return to the saucepan.  In a small saucepan, melt butter over low heat.  Add flour and stir 1 or 2 minutes to combine flour and butter.  Add the milk to the butter and heat over low heat until milk is thickened and bubbles start to form around the edges.  Pour milk into cauliflower and heat until  it is hot and ready to eat.  Salt and pepper to taste.

Vegan Curried Cauliflower Soup Recipe

1 cup diced onion
1 clove garlic, chopped
2 cups sliced, raw cauliflower
1 cup peeled, diced, raw russet potato
3 cups vegetable broth
1 tsp. hot madras curry powder
salt and white pepper

Place onion, garlic, cauliflower, potato, curry powder and broth in a medium sized saucepan.  Bring to boil and reduce heat to simmer.  Simmer until cauliflower and potatoes are soft.  Remove from heat and cool.  Pour into blender container and puree until smooth.  You may need to do this half of the cauliflower at a time.  Return to the saucepan and heat until hot and ready to eat.  Salt and pepper to taste.

I live in a rural area.  We are not able to get ingredients to make a true Indian curry.  We also can't get ingredients to make our own curry powder.  If you have access to the ingredients to make your own curry powder, I recommend doing so.  Also, you may not like the amount of curry I use in this recipe.  Adjust it to your taste.  Have a great week and have fun in the kitchen!
  

Friday, December 4, 2015

Cranberry Cornbread Recipe

It's the time of year that you want to bake.  Warming up the house with the oven and filling the place the delicious smells of baking.  Cranberry Cornbread helps do just that.  Besides the pleasant aroma it has while baking, you get the nutritional benefits of fresh cranberries (more on that later) and whole grains.  The sweet corn flavor and tart cranberries go well with something spicy, like the Curried Cauliflower Soup I served with the cornbread.  I'll post that on Monday.  For now enjoy this moist delicious cornbread.  Pin it so you don't loose the recipe!


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Cranberry Cornbread Recipe

2 cups stone ground organic cornmeal
3/4 cup stone ground organic whole wheat flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. salt
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
1 1/2 cup buttermilk
1/3 cup honey
1/3 safflower oil (you can use olive oil if you want)
1 tbsp. orange zest
1 cup fresh cranberries, rinsed and patted dry

Turn the oven to 425 degrees.  Place a greased 9" round or square pan in the oven to heat.  In a bowl combine the first five ingredients, cornmeal through salt.  Whisk together.  In another bowl combine buttermilk, honey, oil, eggs and zest.  Whisk together until smooth.  Combine the wet ingredients with dry and mix thoroughly.  Fold in the cranberries.  Remove the heated pan from the oven and pour in the batter.  Return the pan to the oven and bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until golden brown.  Remove and let stand for 10 minutes before cutting.

Look for the facts about the nutritional value of cranberries this coming week.  Get cranberries now and freeze them for later use.  Add frozen berries to smoothies and use them in other recipes.  Have fun in the kitchen everyone.

Monday, November 30, 2015

Applesauce Gingerbread Scone Recipe

We all like having something warm and comforting for breakfast in the cooler weather.  Family enjoys the treat of having something straight from the oven.  These scones will fill all your needs.  The usual scone is full of heavy cream and butter.  In these applesauce is used to replace part of the butter and low fat buttermilk is used to replace the cream.  I use spelt flour and whole wheat that is GMO free and organic.  The result is a scone that tastes decedent without the saturated fat content and has good for you whole grains.  Be sure to pin this to use all winter long!

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Applesauce Gingerbread Scone Recipe

1/3 cup low fat buttermilk
1/3 cup sorghum molasses (you can use blackstrap if you wish)
3 tbsp. unsweetened applesauce
1 cup organic spelt flour (you can use all purpose)
1 cup organic stone ground whole wheat flour
2 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. ginger
1/4 tsp. cloves
1/4 tsp. salt
4 tbsp. cold butter, cut into small pieces

In a bowl mix together the buttermilk, molasses and applesauce, set aside.  In another bowl mix together the next eight ingredients, the spelt through the salt.  Using a pastry blender, two butter knives or your fingers, cut the butter into the dry ingredients until it resembles course meal.  Add the milk to the mixture and combine using a fork.  You want the dough to be smooth and soft.  Turn the dough out onto a surface dusted with more flour and knead 10 to 12 times.  Cut the dough into two separate pieces.  Place each piece of dough on a greased sheet pan and pat into a 5" circle (both pieces will fit on a large sheet pan).  Cut each circle into 6 equal wedges.  Don't separate the wedges.  Bake in a oven preheated to 425 degrees for 12 to 15 minutes or until hollow sounding when tapped.  Serve them up!

These scones travel well and reheat easily.  As a result it is a recipe to keep on hand for brunch gatherings or just for family.  Any time you choose to make them, I know you will enjoy them!  Get in the kitchen and have fun!

Monday, November 23, 2015

Apple & Extra Sharp White Cheddar Quesadillas

These quesadillas are the perfect snack for your game and parade watchers.  Crisp sweet apples, sharp tangy cheese with a little bite from kale and mustard; they fill your mouth with flavor.  Prep each part ahead of time and they can be assembled quickly.  Be sure to pin this so you have it later!

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Apple & Extra Sharp Cheddar Quesadillas

3 Whole wheat burrito size tortillas
1 tbsp. Dijon mustard
2 tsp. apple cider (you can use apple juice if you prefer)
6 ounces extra sharp white cheddar cheese, shredded
1 honeycrisp or fuji apple, cored and sliced 1/8" thick slices
1 to 2 ounces baby kale, cleaned and stems removed

In a small bowl combine the mustard and apple cider.  Heat a large non-stick frying pan or griddle to medium high heat.  Lay a tortilla flat on your pan or griddle.  Working quickly, spread the mustard over the tortilla.  Top half of the tortilla with 2 ounces of shredded cheese, apple slices and baby kale leaves.  Fold the tortilla over the filling and continue to grill until golden brown.  Turn over and grill the other side until golden brown.  Remove from the pan and repeat the process with other two tortillas.  Cut each quesadilla into four wedges, using a serrated knife or pizza cutter.  Serve them up to your hungry people!

To prep ahead of time; mix the mustard and cider together and store in an airtight container.  Shred the cheese and keep in a zip lock bag.  Slice the apples and dunk them in ice water that has lemon juice mixed in.  Remove the apple from the water, allow to drain, then store in an airtight container.  Clean and prep the kale and store in an airtight container or zip lock bag.  

For other recipes for your game and parade watcher try Corn & Avocado Salsa or Chipotle White Bean Dip.  I won't be posting again till next week.  So, have a great week everyone!

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Meal Prep Burns Calories

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Many people worry about the amount of calories they will be taking in over the holidays.  What we don't always think about is how many calories are burned in the preparation of the holiday meals.  That's right!  You can be burning a portion of the calories you will be taking in just by cooking the meal.  Below is a list of the average amount of calories that you burn preparing each part of your meal.  I found this surprising.  Take a look.  Pin it to show a friend!

  1. Turkey:  Prepping and seasoning, stirring and whisking the gravy.  Calories burned:  122
  2. Stuffing/dressing:  Cleaning and chopping the veggies, sauteing, toasting and taring the bread, mixing.   Calories Burned:  203
  3. Cranberry Sauce:  Prepping and stirring  Calories Burned:  54
  4. Mashed Potatoes:  Cleaning, peeling and cutting, then mashing.  Calories Burned:  54
  5. 2 Veggie Sides:  Cleaning, peeling, cutting, cooking, mixing whisking.  Calories Burned:  135
  6. Dessert:  Measuring, mixing, whisking, beating, rolling, kneading.  Calories Burned:  135

The Total Calories  You Burned:  703 calories

These are just averages.  They also do not take into account any additional items you are making or the snacks you will need to make for the game and parade watchers.  The other thing that is not included is the effort you go through to clean the house, set the table or anything else you are doing for the day.  So don't beat yourself up over what you eat.  You've given yourself a workout just to get to the point you that you can eat.  I hope I have given you something to think about.

I mentioned snacks for the game and parade watchers.  The next recipes you will be getting are for snacks.  So keep an eye out for them! 

Monday, November 16, 2015

Spinach Bake

Casseroles are an easy way to make veggies for large dinner parties.  You can put them together ahead of time, then just stick them in the oven.  The problem is, many are full of high sodium condensed soups as well as fat.  They actually have little veg. in them.  I wanted to give you a veggie filled, low fat, low sodium option.  It is just as easy to put together.  You can make it ahead of time.  But, it is packed with nutritious dark leafy greens.  Try it out and it just might become a new tradition at your dinner parties.  Be sure to pin it for use in the weeks to come!


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Spinach Bake

1/4 cup coconut oil (you can use butter if you prefer)
1 large onion, diced
30 ounces spinach, cleaned and torn (you can use frozen, thawed and drained)
1 cup bread crumbs. divided use (I make my own with gluten free bread)
1/2 cup chopped pecans
1/2 cup fat free half & half (use plant based milk in you prefer)
1/2 tsp. nutmeg
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. pepper

Melt coconut oil in a deep, large pan.  Add the onion and saute until tender.  Add the spinach and stir to wilt.  When spinach is wilted, remove from heat and add 2/3 cup bread crumbs, pecans, half & half, nutmeg, salt and pepper.  Stir to make sure everything is thoroughly combined.  Place in a greased casserole dish or a baking pan.  Sprinkle the top with the remaining bread crumbs.  At this point you can store it until the day of the dinner party.

Bake in a preheated 350 degree oven for 30 to 40 minutes if baking immediately.   If you are taking from the refrigerator to the oven, bake 60 minutes or until the center is hot and bubbly.

This can easily be made into a brunch recipe.  Toast English muffins.  Place half of an English muffin on a plate, top with a spoonful of the spinach bake.  Add a poached egg on top.  Drizzle with a little browned butter.

Enjoy your week and have fun in the kitchen!

Friday, November 13, 2015

Twice Baked Sweet Potatoes

Sweet potato casserole is a tradition in many households at this time of year.  It can be full of processed sugar and fat.  The taste of the sweet potatoes themselves is sometimes lost.  Twice Baked Sweet Potatoes are the perfect alternative.  You get the true flavor of the sweet potato along with all its vitamins and antioxidant benefits.  It also isn't as much work as a casserole!  In the recipe below I used sweet potatoes approximately 7" long and 3 1/2" in diameter.  The amounts I give are for each potato.  Remember with a potato this size a serving would be a forth of the potato, not a whole potato.  Try these for yourself and I am sure you will want these to be your new tradition.  Pin it for use in the coming weeks!



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Twice Baked Sweet Potatoes

Sweet potatoes, unpeeled, scrubbed clean (figure 1/4 to 1/2 per person)
2 tbsp. sorghum molasses per potato
1/4 tsp. pumpkin pie spice per potato
1/4 tsp. salt per potato
1 tbsp. butter, melted per potato
1/4 cup chopped pecans, toasted, per potato

Pick the sweet potatoes with a fork three or four times on different sides.  Place them in a swallow baking dish or on a sheet pan.  Bake in a 350 degree preheated oven for 60 to 90 minutes (it depends on the size of the potatoes) or until the flesh gives under gentle pressure.  Remove from the oven and allow to cool.  Slice the potatoes in half lengthwise.  Scoop out the center of the potatoes leaving an 1/4" shell.  Place the potato flesh in a bowl and add the sorghum, pumpkin pie spice, butter and salt.  Beat at low speed with an electric mixer till ingredients are blended together.  Fold in the pecans.  Spoon the mixture back into the shells.  This portion can be completed a few days in advance.  Refrigerate in an airtight container until ready to bake or continue on.

Place the potatoes in a shallow baking dish or on a sheet pan.  Cover with foil.  Bake in a preheated oven at 350 degrees for 20 minutes.  Remove foil sprinkle the top of the potatoes with addition chopped pecans.  Bake for an addition 15 to 20 minutes or until completely heated through.

These are a great addition to your fall and winter menus.  I know you will enjoy them.  Have fun in the kitchen everyone!
   

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Dinner Party Planning - Minimize Stress in five steps


We love our family and friends.  But, no matter how much we love them being a host for a dinner party can cause a ton of stress.  Stress not only effects us physically, it also effects us mentally and emotionally.  It can rob us of the joy of having those we love around us.  So what do we need to do?  Plan and then implement that plan.  Below are five steps take to host a great dinner party.  Pin this plan for use over the next few weeks!  Print it out!  Check off each part as you go.  Everyone will wonder how you made it look so easy!

One Week in Advance:

  • Assemble freeze ahead foods.  Such a casseroles.  Do you have bread dough you can make and freeze?  Or pie shells?  Anything you can think of that can be made in advance and frozen do it.
Four Days in Advance:

  • If you are serving meat, begin thawing it in the refrigerator.  Allow 24 hours for every five pounds.
Two Days in Advance:

  • Prep any veggies you will need.  Making Creamy Baked Kale?  Wilt the kale now.  Making Five Spice Turnips & Carrots?  Dice and blanch the veggies now.  Store in the refrigerator in zip-lock bags or sealed containers.
  • Prepare sauces, dressings, and dips, again keep them in sealed containers in the frig.
  • Toast nuts for baked goods or salads.  Making Pear & Cranberry Salad?  Make the dressing and toast the nuts now.  Store in the Frig.
Day in Advance:

  • Prepare individual size desserts or hand eaten items, such as Applesauce Cookies or Almond Meringue Shells .  Store in airtight containers
  • Peal and cut potatoes.  Place in a large bowl of water and refrigerate until ready to cook.
  • Remove frozen bread dough from freezer.  Allow to thaw in frig.
Big day:

  • Cook or roast the meat
  • Heat the frozen foods.
  • Assemble the appetizers
  • Serve the meal buffet style.  This keeps you from having to do place settings and name cards as well as a seating chart.
  • Have disposable containers on hand for leftovers.  You can send some home with the guests or save them and eat them latter.
Now that you have your schedule under control, you may be worried about overeating.  We all have days that we overindulge.  However, you can make some good choices about what to serve, then you will not be feeling as guilty.  Instead of the traditional sweet potato casserole, try my Twice Baked Sweet Potatoes that will be posted Nov. 14th.  Instead of the green been casserole try the Creamy Baked Kale mentioned above or my Spinach Bake that will be posted on Nov. 16th.

Don't let stress rob you of your joy!  Don't let it have negative effect on your health.  With a good plan in place you can do anything!

  

Monday, November 9, 2015

Oat Topped Baked Apples

Do you know someone who is diabetic?  Are you trying to find healthier alternatives for desserts this season?  This recipe can help.  Baked apples are simple way to have a dessert that is full of nutrients and still satisfies your desire for a sweet ending to your meal.  The oats and nuts just bring the nutrition level up a notch, while adding another flavorful element to the dessert.  Be sure to pin it to use later on this season!

apples, apple recipes, oatmeal recipes, dessert recipes, diabetic recipes, thanksgiving recipes, Christmas recipes

Oat Topped Baked Apples

2 large honeycrisp apples
juice of 1/2 lemon
1/2 cup steel cut oats
2 tbsp. almond flour (ground almonds)
1 tbsp. coconut sugar
1/4 tsp. cinnamon
1/8 tsp. nutmeg
1/4 cup chopped pecans or walnuts
3 tbsp. melted coconut oil (you can use butter if you wish)

Scrub the apples.  Slice in half and core.  Slice a small amount off the skin side of the apple so that it will sit level core side up and not wobble around.  Brush the cored side of the apple with the lemon juice.  Place the apples cored side up in a shallow baking dish.  Sprinkle lightly with salt.

In a small bowl combine the remaining ingredients.  Work the coconut oil through the dry ingredients.  You don't want anything dry.  Top each apple with 1/4 of the oats.  Press the oats into the cored center of the apples and cover the top of each apple.  Pour water into the bottom of the baking pan 1/8" deep.  Cover the pan with foil.  Bake in a preheated 350 degree oven for 30 minutes.  Remove the foil and continue baking until apples are tender.  Each hot or room temp.

Do you want to add a creamy element to your dessert?  Try Frozen Greek Yogurt or Honey Vanilla Custard Sauce to top you baked apples.

Why use honeycrisp?  They have been proven to keep their shape and have a firm texture when baked whole.  Others that keep their shape and have a good texture are rome, jonagold, and spartan.  While granny smith do well in pies, they turn to mush when baked whole.


Friday, November 6, 2015

Five Spice Roasted Turnips & Carrots

Many people view root vegetables as very humble veggies.  In the fall these veggies can contribute to the rainbow of colors on your dinner table and also provide an abundance of healthy nutrients in the process.  They are versatile and personally I think they are yummy as well.  With very few ingredients you can elevate your root veggies to a new level.  Don't forget to pin it for future use!

Chinese five spice, turnips, carrots, root vegetables, healthy recipes, healthy diet recipes, clean eating recipes, healthy living
Five Spice Roasted Turnips & Carrots

3 medium sized turnips
3 large organic carrots
1 tbsp. olive oil
1 tsp. Chinese five spice

Peel and cube the turnip into 1/2" cubes.  Peel and slice the carrots into 1/2" slices.  Place the veggies in a sauce pan and cover with water.  Bring to boil and reduce heat to simmer till crisp tender, about five minutes (you don't want them completely cooked).  Remove from heat.  Drain and rinse under cold water to stop the cooking process.  Allow to sit and drain till dry.  This part can be done up to 2 days in advance of roasting.

Place a sheet pan in a cold oven and turn the oven up to 425 degrees.  While the pan is heating, toss the veggies with the oil and five spice to completely coat.  Place in a single layer on the hot sheet pan and place the pan on the lowest rack of the oven.  Allow to roast for 15 minutes, remove and toss the veggies around on the pan.  Return to the oven for another 15 to 20 minutes or until veggies are tender and browned.  Salt and pepper to taste.

You can use this method with any root vegetable.  Try different types and different seasonings.  As always enjoy your time in the kitchen!

Monday, November 2, 2015

Pear & Cranberry Salad

This salad is simple enough to make that you can have it for a light supper anytime, yet is elegant enough to use as a starter for a more formal meal.  You can also use it as a side on a festive occasion.  It gives you bright fresh flavors to go with the more homey, comforting foods we tend to eat in colder weather.  With a rainbow of fruits and veggies on this plate one one can question the health benefits of this beautiful salad.  So eat up! Also be sure to pin it for latter use.

Pears, pear recipes, cranberries, cranberry recipes, salad recipes, thanksgiving recipes, Christmas recipes, vegetarian recipes
  

Pear & Cranberry Salad

1/4 cup unsweetened apple juice
2 tbsp. safflower oil
1 tbsp. apple cider vinegar
1 tbsp. balsamic vinegar
1 tbsp. onion pulp (see note)
2 bosc  pears, peeled, cored and sliced
8 ounces mixed greens (I used bib and red leaf lettuce), cleaned and torn
1 cup unsweetened dried cranberries
1 cup chopped pecans, toasted
2 ounces of your favorite blue cheese, crumbled

Whisk together the first 5 ingredients, juice through onion, in a small bowl.  On 4 salad plates, arrange the greens.  Top each with half of a sliced pear.  Sprinkle the cranberries, pecans and cheese over top of each.  Lightly salt and pepper each.  Drizzle the dressing on top.  Your salad is ready to eat!

Note:  You can use your food processor or mini chopper to make onion pulp.  Place some onion in the processor and pulse until it is made into pulp.  By doing this, the onion disappears into the dressing and contributes to the overall flavor of the dish.

I used bosc pears because they still have a firm texture even when fully ripe.  You can try this with fresh cranberries as well.

     

Friday, October 30, 2015

Creamy Baked Kale

With the cooler temperatures comes the desire for food that is warm and comforting.  This kale dish fills that desire.  It is filled with the health benefits of kale and immune boosting onions.  You also get plenty of protein from low fat dairy and egg whites. So, it can become the center of your meal.  Try it out for yourself.  Make sure you have it for the future by pinning it.

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Creamy Baked Kale

16 ounces cleaned, chopped kale
1/2 cup diced onion
1 clove garlic, minced
1 tbsp. olive oil
1/4 cup water
1 cup non fat milk
1/4 spelt flour (you can use all purpose)
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper
1/8 tsp. nutmeg
4 ounces cheddar cheese, grated, divided use
1 cup low fat cottage cheese
2 egg whites

In a large pan heat the olive oil over medium heat.  Add the onion and garlic.  Saute till translucent.  Add the chopped kale and allow it to wilt.  Add the water and reduce the heat to low.  Cover and allow the kale to steam until tender.  Approximately 15 minutes.  Set aside and allow to cool.  This portion can be completed  a few days in advance.

Combine the milk, flour, salt, pepper and nutmeg in a sauce pan over low heat.  Whisk until thick, 2 to 3 minutes.  Set off the heat and add half of the grated cheese and the cottage cheese.  Whisk till the cheddar is melted.

In a small bowl, beat the egg whites till soft peaks form.

Squeeze all the moister you can out of the kale and combine it with the cream sauce.  Fold in the egg whites and place in a greased baking dish.  Bake in a preheated oven at 350 degrees for 35 to 40 minutes.  Remove from the oven and top with the rest of the shredded cheese.  Place back in the oven and bake for another 20 to 30 minutes or until set and the cheese is beginning to brown.

Enjoy!

You can use other greens if you would like.  Or try a different cheese.  As always, make it your own.  Have fun making something new and be healthy!


  

Monday, October 26, 2015

Roasted Potato Salad

The salad recipe I promised.  This is the other item I took with me when we did our volunteer work this weekend and it is another recipe that works well for gatherings.  It can be made ahead of time or eaten right out of the oven, your choice.  It is simple to make and you don't have to worry about refrigeration when carrying it with you to another location.  Keeping the skins on the potatoes gives you the maximum nutrition they have.  You also have the immune boosting power of onion and the vitamins contained in flat leaf parsley.  The first photo does not show the flat leaf parsley because you don't add it till the last minute.  This is a recipe to keep around for winter or summer, so pin it to one of your boards.

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Roasted Potato Salad

4 medium sized russet potatoes
1 large sweet onion
olive oil or melted coconut oil (your choice, you can also use safflower)
1/4 cup white wine vinegar
1/4 olive oil
1 tbsp. fresh squeezed lemon juice
1 tbsp. dijon mustard
2 tbsp. fresh minced tarragon (if using dried use 1 tsp.)
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. pepper
1 cup fresh flat leaf parsley leaves

Scrub, dry and cut potatoes into 1/2" cubes.  Peel and slice the onion in half vertically.  Then slice the halves vertically into 1/4" slices.  Toss the potatoes with just enough oil to coat.  Place in a single layer on a sheet pan.  Using the low rack of your oven roast the potatoes in a preheated oven at 425 degrees for 20 minutes.

While the potatoes are in the oven, combine the vinegar, oil, juice, mustard, tarragon, salt and pepper in a small bowl.  Whisk to combine.

Remove potatoes from oven and turn the potatoes using a spatula, tossing them around somewhat.  Coat the onion with oil the same as the potatoes and add them to the sheet pan.  Return the pan to the low rack of your oven for another 20 to 30 minutes or until potatoes are golden brown and onion is cooked.  Remove from oven and using a fork or potato masher break up some of the potatoes.  Don't completely mash them.  Place them in a bowl and add 1/2 of the dressing, tossing to coat all the potatoes.

From this point it is up to you how to proceed.  If you are serving it hot, add the rest of the dressing and the parsley, toss to coat and distribute the parsley.  Now it is ready to serve.  You can leave it and serve it at room temp., adding the rest of the dressing and parsley just before serving.  You can also allow the potatoes to cool and place them in the refrigerator.  When ready to serve add the rest of the dressing and parsley, toss to coat and serve it cold.   

Serve it as you wish.  Below is another photo showing it on a persons plate, so you can see it with the parsley added.  Have a good week and have fun in the kitchen everyone!

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Saturday, October 24, 2015

Pumpkin Spice Loaf Cake

I am going to be doing some volunteer work with some friends this Saturday.  One of my friends is bringing a grill and after we finish the work, we will eat.  I had cooked pumpkin in the freezer from when I did the biscuits.  So I have made this loaf cake.  There is no processed sugar.  You have the goodness of pumpkin as well as flax and nuts.  Have fun this weekend, I will be enjoying mine!



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Pumpkin Spice Loaf Cake

2 1/2 cups organic whole wheat flour
1/2 cup ground flax seed
1/2 cup almond flour
1 tbsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. ginger
1/8 tsp. nutmeg
1/4 chopped pecans
1/4 chopped sugar free dried cranberries
1 tbsp. fresh squeezed lemon juice
1/4 cup safflower oil
1/2 cup maple syrup
1/2 cup sorghum molasses
2 eggs, separated
1/4 cup buttermilk or yogurt (I used buttermilk)
2 cups pureed pumpkin

In a large bowl whisk together the first 9 ingredients (flour through nutmeg).  Add the pecans and cranberries.  Toss to coat with flour.  In another bowl mix together the lemon juice, oil, syrup, molasses, egg yolks and pumpkin.  Add the wet ingredients to the dry and mix thoroughly.  Beat egg whites until soft peaks form and fold into the batter until you can not see any white streaks.  Pour batter into a greased 9" x 5" loaf pan.  Bake in a preheated oven at 350 degrees for 60 minutes or until a pick comes out clean.  Remove from oven and allow to cool for 10 minutes.  Remove from pan and allow to cool completely on a wire rack.  Then eat!

You can glaze it if you want.  You can also change the fruit and nuts you put in the batter.  Make it your own.  On Monday I will post the salad I made.  Be sure to watch for that.  Again have a good weekend everyone!

Monday, October 19, 2015

Apple & Cider Vinegar Greens

Last Monday I gave you the Pumpkin Biscuits.  These are the greens that went with the biscuits.  They have apple to add some sweetness and the cider vinegar makes the greens tender and mild.  No one can argue the nutritional value of dark leafy greens, it is just finding new and exciting ways to serve them that can be difficult.  Try this new way of serving them Today!

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Apple & Cider Vinegar Greens

1/2 cup peeled, diced granny smith apple
3/4 cup water, divided use
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
1 lb. greens of your choice (I used turnip), cleaned and chopped

Place the diced apple in a deep frying pan that has been heated over low heat.  Saute the apple for 1 to 2 minutes to release some of the juices.  Add 1/4 cup of the water and cover the pan.  Allow the apple to cook in the water for 5 minutes.  Add the greens and allow to wilt.  Add the cider vinegar and the rest of the water.  Allow the greens to cook 20 to 30 minutes or until tender and the liquid is gone.  Add more water if needed.  Salt and pepper to taste.  Serve them up!

The trick to this recipe is doing it all over low heat.  As I stated I used turnip greens, but this will work with any other greens.  Such as, collards, beet, mustard or even kale.  Have a good week and above all, have fun in the kitchen!

Saturday, October 17, 2015

Eggplant Casserole

Eggplant casserole is not a thing of beauty.  You can't do much to make it beautiful.  But, if you like eggplant, it will be a thing of beauty in your mouth.  I told you all last Monday that a friend had given me baby eggplant.  This is what I made with them.  This is an entire meal in a pan.  You have protein from eggs and milk.  Cornbread is in it as well, along with your veggies.  Have a good portion of green veggies on the side and your set.  So, don't hold its looks against it, just enjoy every mouthful.


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Eggplant Casserole

1 large or 2 medium eggplant (I used 6 baby eggplants)
1/2 cup diced onion
1/2 cup diced green bell pepper
1/2 cup diced red bell pepper
1 clove garlic, minced
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1 8" x 8" pan of cornbread (see note below)
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper
1/2 tsp. poultry seasoning
1 cup milk (you can use plant based milk or cows milk)

Peal, cube and steam the eggplant till soft.  Mash with a potato masher.  You want it still to have some texture and pieces of eggplant.  You want about three cups of mashed eggplant.

In a frying pan heat some coconut oil or olive oil over medium heat.  Add the onion, garlic and bell peppers.  Saute till tender.  Add the onions to the eggplant and mix together.  Add the eggs, salt, pepper and poultry seasoning and mix in.  
Break the cornbread into small bite sized pieces.  You want 2 1/2 to 3 cups of small pieces.  Fold the cornbread into the eggplant.  Place in a greased casserole pan.  Carefully pour the milk evenly over the top of the eggplant.  Bake in a preheated 350 degree oven for 45 to 50 minutes or until hot and bubbly.

Note:  You want to use cornbread, not Johnycake.  What is the difference?  Sugar, Johnycake adds sugar to the cornbread recipe.  True cornbread does not contain sugar.  You also want to be sure to use organic, stone ground corn in your cornbread recipe.

To maintain the nutritional value of the eggplant, steaming is the best way to go.  If you want, you can cook it in a small amount of water.  Be sure to safe the cooking liquid to add to soup or sauces.  You can change this up by adding different veggies in the recipe.  You can also top it with shredded cheese before baking.  Make it yours and have fun in the kitchen!


Monday, October 12, 2015

Pumpkin Biscuits

This is a recipe I have made with sweet potato in the past.  I had to try it out with pumpkin.  The addition of pumpkin or sweet potatoes raises the nutritional value of biscuits and also adds a pump of flavor.  I have some friends that are moving and had to clear out their garden at the place they are leaving.  So I was given baby turnips and eggplant.  These biscuits were paired with oven roasted baby turnips and braised turnip greens.  Can you tell I am from the south?  Eat these with whatever you wish, just enjoy them!

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Pumpkin Biscuits

2 cups spelt flour (you can use organic all purpose as well)
2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
5 tbsp. cold butter cut into small pieces
1 cup pureed cooked pumpkin (fresh or canned)
1 tbsp. honey
1/3 cup milk (use whatever kind you wish)

Mix together the flour, baking powder and salt in a bowl.  Using two knives or a pastry cutter, cut the butter into the dry mixture until it resembles course meal.  In another bowl combine the pumpkin, honey and milk.  Add the wet ingredients to the dry and mix just until moist.  

Turn the dough out onto a floured surface and knead lightly 5 or 6 times.  Roll or pat dough to 3/4" inch thick.  Using a biscuit cutter (you can also use a glass)  cut into biscuits.  Gather the remnants of dough together and roll again till dough is used.

Place biscuits on a greased cookie sheet and bake in a preheated 400 degree oven for 15 minutes or until when tapped they have a hollow sound.  Serve them up!

As I stated I usually have made this recipe with sweet potato.  You can do the same.  It is a great way to use leftover baked sweet potato.  If you want a quicker way to cut into biscuits, roll your dough into a square 3/4" thick.  Using a knife cut into squares approximately 2" x 2".  Yes, you will have square biscuits.  But, you know what?  They taste just as good as round. Have fun in the kitchen everyone!

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