IMG_20160714_182852521Beef and Vegetable Stir Fry

Ingredients for the sauce:

1  Tbsp sesame oil

2 garlic cloves, minced

1-1/4 tsp ground ginger

1/2 tsp chili paste

pinch of red pepper flakes

1/2 cup chicken broth

1/4 cup soy sauce (low sodium)

1/3 cup honey

3 Tbsp rice wine vinegar

1/3 cup packed brown sugar

2 tsp cornstarch

2 tsp water

For dish:

Olive oil for meat

Salt, pepper

2 flank steak or other steak, trimmed and sliced thinly on bias

1 head broccoli

2 cups snow peas

1 onion sliced

Saute all veggies in large skillet or Wok, set aside in large bowl. Fry steak seasoned with salt and pepper. Fry only a couple minutes on each side. Add to bowl.

Make sauce by adding all ingredients into sauce pan, bring to boil. Mix water and cornstarch in glass, whisk into sauce, bring up to boil let cook about 3-4 minutes. Stir just enough into meat, save rest for another meal. Can serve with rice or noodles.

IMG_20160714_180119547_HDR

Strawberry Cream Cheese Pie

strawberry cream cheese pie

For the crust:
1 sleeve (10 cracker sheets) graham crackers
2 TBS granulated sugar
4 TBS butter, melted
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Spray a 9″ pie plate lightly with cooking spray.  In a food processor, process the graham crackers into crumbs.  Add in the 2 TBS granulated sugar, melted butte and mix. Pluse a few times to combine ingredients.  Press mixture into prepared pie plate, on the bottom and up the sides.  Bake in the oven for 8-10 minutes to “set” the crust.  Cool completely before filling.
For the filling:
Approx 3-4 cups sliced strawberries, fresh is the only way!
1-8oz. package of cream cheese, at room temperature
1 TBS (heaping) powdered sugar
Beat until smooth then fold in:
1 cup fresh whipped cream
Put this on top of cooled graham cracker crust
Take one third of berries and mash in larger sauce pan with potato masher, add one cup sugar and 3 tablespoons corn starch.
Cook until well thickened add, rest of strawberries, let cool.
Put cooled and thickened berries on top of cream cheese.  Refrigerate for at least 1 hour before serving, to allow the cream layer to firm up a bit.
Add some slightly thickened by beating fresh whipped cream and garnish with more berries if desired.

Coconut Banana Muffins

IMG_20160612_122016

These are the best muffins for a sweeter taste and yummy for a snack. They stay nice and moist for a week if in proper container. Not too mention a good way to use up some over ripe bananas in a way other than banana bread.

Ingredients:

1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour, unbleached

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

3/4 cup ( 2-3) overripe bananas, mashed fine

1/2 cup vegetable oil

2/3 cup organic sugar

1 large egg- room temperature

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/4 cup pecans toasted and chopped

1 1/2 cups sweetened flaked coconut, divided or use unsweetened coconut is you want less sugar in your diet.

Preheat oven to 350°F. Line muffin tin with liners or use spray liberally with a vegetable spray.

Directions

In a medium sized bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.

Whisk together bananas, vegetable oil, sugar, egg, and vanilla in a large bowl until well combined. Fold in flour mixture until flour is just moistened and then fold in 1 cup shredded coconut and nuts.

Divide batter among lined muffin cups and sprinkle with remaining shredded coconut. Bake for 20-22 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center come out clean.

Transfer muffins to a rack and  let cool. Serve immediately with butter or store in an airtight container for up to 3 days.

 

 

Fresh Fruit Salsa with Cinnamon Chips

572b706083e32.image

This is the time of year when there are so many fruits to choose from. Pick up a bunch at your local store or see what your farmers market has to offer. Grab some of your favorite home made jam or purchase that from a local venue too. This is  a great way to incorporate fruit into your diet.

Ingredients:

You can use any type of fruit you like, this is just a suggestion for combinations you can try.  To make a larger batch just add some more fruit and a bit more jam

2 Kiwi (peeled and chopped)

3 Peaches (chopped)

1 cup Grapes (chopped)

8 Strawberries (Sliced)

2 Tablespoons strawberry jelly (or jam) or other fruit jam

2 Tablespoons brown or coconut sugar

Instructions:

Place all chopped fruit into a bowl

Mix the jelly and brown sugar in a separate bowl until mixed well

Fold the jelly mixture into the fruit

For The Cinnamon Chips
Spread butter on the flour tortillas
Sprinkle cinnamon/sugar mixture on top
With a pizza cutter, cut wedges in the tortilla (triangle shaped)
Bake at 400 degrees for 6-7 minutes or until golden and crisp
Let cool and store in zip top type bag or serve right away with the salsa!

Swiss Chard, Wild Rice salad with Orange Dressing

rainbow chard salad 2

This is an earthy wild rice salad with sauteed shallots, rainbow chard, orange slices (try blood orange if available), dried cherries, sunflower or pinenuts and an orange vinaigrette. In this recipe I used rainbow chard that I had frozen from my garden. Using blood oranges in season makes this a fun and different salad.

Make the vinaigrette first:

1 Tablespoon orange zest, plus about 3 tablespoons juice

2 Tablespoons minced shallot

1 tablespoon Dijon mustard

1/4 teaspoon Himalayan salt

1/2 cup or more extra virgin olive oil

In a pint canning jar, put the orange juice, zest, shallot, mustard, salt and shake until well combined. slowly add olive oil and whisk until emulsified or you can add all the oil and shake very vigorously until well emulsified and thick.

Salad

1 1/2 cups cooked wild rice

salt to taste

1/2 cup sunflower seed or pine nuts

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1 shallot, sliced

1 bunch of rainbow chard, chopped or 1 package of frozen thawed and drained

1/2 cup dried tart cherries

3 medium oranges, peeled and sliced into rounds

2 Tablespoons minced green onion or chives

 

Cook 1 1/2 cups of wild rice according to instructions. Drain and ad 1/4 cup of the vinaigrette to rice in a large bowl.

Over medium heat in a skillet, Add the nuts of your choice and toast ever so slightly. Set aside nuts. Add olive oil to pan with shallots, saute for about 2-3 minutes or until edges are just starting to brown. Add the chard, along with a bit of salt and pepper. Saute until the chard is wilted, add some more olive oil if desired.

In large bowl add rice, and sliced oranges, mix in chard.  Save a couple slices of oranges for each plate.

Plate salad, adding in some oranges, more dressing, top with nuts and green onions.

rainbow chard

Frozen Rainbow Chard from My Garden in Skillet with Shallots

 

Red Cabbage, Blueberry, Garbanzo Bean Salad with Blueberry Tahini Dressing
re cabbage blueberry dressing
I still have cabbage in the fridge from my garden last fall, so I want to get it used up as soon as possible. Luckily the red cabbage keeps very good when wrapped well and kept in the downstairs refrigerator. I love this dressing, it is sweet and tastes great. You could substiitute any berries in season such as raspberries, strawberries or blackberries. Use those same berries in the actual salad and change from red to greeen or Napa cabbage.
Be sure to place the greens on the plate before topping with the mixed salad, if you keep the greens in the salad they will get limp.
INGREDIENTS
  • ½ a red cabbage, very finely sliced
  • 1 cup dried cherries
  • 1/2 cup sunflower seeds
  • 1/4 cup toasted pine nuts
  • 1 can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 2 handfuls of  mixed organic salad greens per plate
  • 1 small handful of blueberries per plate

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Mix up the chickpeas, nuts, red cabbage and dried cherries in a large bowl.
  2. Place the mixed greens in each serving bowl and top with the cabbage mixture and a handful of small blueberries.
  3. Make Tahini dressing and top salad with dressing

Blueberry Tahini Dressing

INGREDIENTS

3 Tbsp tahini paste

3 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice and one lemon zested

1 Tbsp Braags apple cider vinegar

2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil

1/2 tsp. garlic powder

1/4 tsp. himilayan salt or to taste

1/4 fresh ground black pepper, or to taste

small handful of blueberries or at least 6

3 Tbsp pure maple syrup, or to taste

Blend in all ingredients in blender or a magic bullet. Serve on salad. So yummy!

Banana Oatmeal Pancakes with Elderberry Blueberry Topping

oatmeal banana blueberry topped pancakes

Ingredients:

3/4 cup old fashioned oats

2 medium bananas, mashed

1 1/2 cups milk

3/4 cup whole wheat flour

1/4 cup all-purpose flour

2 tablespoons brown sugar

1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

1/4 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon fresh grated nutmeg

1 egg

3 tablespoons vegetable oil

1/4 cup chopped pecans, plus 2 tablespoons to garnish

butter, for the griddle or skillet

Toppping:

1 cup fresh blueberries

1/4 cup elderberry jam

Optional: to make thick sauce. Mix about 1 tablespoon cornstarch and 1/8 cup water and stir into bubbling blueberry mixture.

Toasted coconut

Directions

In a medium bowl, mix together the oats, bananas, and milk. Set them aside to let the oats soak and soften.

Preheat a pancake griddle or skillet over medium low heat. Can raise heat a bit, be careful to not burn.

In a large bowl, whisk together the flours, brown sugar, baking powder, kosher salt, and baking soda, cinnamon and nutmeg.

Beat the egg and oil into the wet oatmeal mixture, and then pour the wet mixture into the dry. Stir until just combined.

Butter the preheated surface and then pour the batter out about 1/4 cup at a time.

These pancakes will need to cook a little longer on the first side than most, so wait until the entire exposed surface is bubbly and the edges start to look as though they are cooking through. Don’t put on too high of heat or they get dark. Keep on medium low heat and cook longer as above.

Flip to cook the second side and then remove the pancakes to a plate. Keep in preheated 200 degree oven.

 

Topping:

Put blueberries and jam in small sauce pan, bring to  boil and let simmer until slightl thickened. If you would like them to be very thick, see above on how to make the sauce thicker.

Sprinkle toasted coconut on top of buttered pancakes for eating!

This is a great tasting combination of vegetables. It has a sweetness with the apple chunks, yet a unique flavor with the coconut milk. 

moroccan sweet potato, beans stew

Ingredients

3-4 cups vegetable broth, can use chicken broth
4 cloves garlic, chopped
5 mini peppers (buy the combo pack, use any colors) slice into pieces
2 Honey crisp apples, peeled, cored, diced
1/2 cup salsa verde or green chilies in can
 1 1/2 cups canned tomatoes, or 1 14-oz. can Muir Glen roasted tomatoes
1 15-oz. can chick peas, rinsed, drained
1 14-oz. can coconut milk
1 lime, juiced
1 tablespoon red curry paste, or to taste
A pinch cinnamon and cumin
Himilayan salt and pepper, to taste

Before serving stir in 2 cups baby greens or place in bottom of bowl and spoon in stew. Add some fresh cilantro and Greek yogurt if desired.

Red and Green Holiday Salad with Mustard  Vinegar Dressing

holiday salad

A salad is a must to compliment a meat with the holiday meal. this salad has red, green and white so it is the perfect colors to add to your holiday plate. You will want to make this salad often this time of year as pomegranates are plentiful.

Ingredients

Salad
2/3 cup chopped walnuts or pecans, toasted with organic sugar
1 cup pomegranate arils
3-4 oz feta cheese, crumbled
Dressing
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
3 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
2 Tbsp honey
1 tsp dijon mustard
Salt and fresh ground pepper, to taste
Toast nuts with a tablespoon of organic sugar and set aside. They can burn easily so watch carefully.
  • Whisk all dressing ingredients in a bowl to blend well. Place  pears and pomegranate seeds and dried cranberries in bowl, add 1 teaspoon or two of dressing and let sit a bit to give cranberries some moisture. Add spinach, drizzle with desired amount of dressing then toss to evenly coat. Top with nuts and feta. Serve immediately. This salad will not keep well so eat it up!

Patty pan squash are an under used vegetable. They are more of a summer squash type in taste and texture. I plant them in the garden and they are widely available at Farmer’s Markets.

This recipe really makes a meal, if you wanted protein add some pre-cooked Italian sausage or use some leftover chicken and just stir into the rest of the ingredients before stuffing.

Quinoa Stuffed Patty Pan Squash

QUINOA STUFFED PATTY PAN SQUASH

Ingredients

cooking spray

6-8 pattypan squash (6 if they’re large, 8 if they’re smaller)

1 tbsp. olive oil

1 small onion, diced

1 garlic clove, minced

2 tsp. cumin

1/2 tsp. dried oregano

2 small tomatoes, diced

2 ears of corn, kernels removed

1/2 c. vegetable broth

1 1/2 c. cooked quinoa (which is about 1/2 c. uncooked)

1 chipotle pepper (fresh from the garden or use 1 tsp dried)

salt and pepper to taste

3/4 10 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese

1/4 c. coarsely chopped parsley

Instructions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 9 x 11 baking dish with  cooking spray.

First, hollow out your pattypan squash. Slice off the stem end, then scoop out most of the insides. You want about a quarter-inch shell remaining. Discard as many of the seeds as you can, but reserve 1/2 cup of chopped squash insides. Place the pattypan squash in the baking dish.

Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion and garlic; cook until softened, about 5 minutes. Stir in cumin and oregano and cook 1 minute more. Add reserved squash insides, tomato, and corn and saute for 3 minutes, then stir in broth, quinoa, chipotle pepper, and adobo peppers, 2 teaspoons or more if you want it spicier). Continue to cook on medium-high heat until most of the liquid has evaporated. Remove from heat and stir in 1/2 cup cheese and season with salt and pepper.

Divide filling into pattypan squash. Pour 1/2 cup of water into bottom of baking dish, then cover dish with aluminum foil. Bake for 20 minutes or until squash is tender. Top with parsley and more cheese before serving.

Salted Caramel Cashew Bars

cashew bars

Who doesn’t love caramel and salt? I used raw cashews in this recipes and sprinkled with sea salt.

If you can’t find rice syrup you can substitute corn syrup but not my favorite ingredient to use. Rice syrup is usually in the whole or natural food section. This makes a 9×9 pan double for 9×13 as in my photo above of my bars. If you want to keep for more than a few days, put in fridge but let warm up before eating so caramel is soft.

Ingredients:

Shortbread crust
¾ cup unsalted butter, softened
⅓ cup powdered sugar 
1-½ cups all purpose flour- spoon lightly into cup and level with knife
¼ tsp baking powder
Salted Caramel
1 cup  organic granulated sugar
3 tbsp rice syrup or light corn syrup
⅓ plus 1 tablespoon cup heavy whipping cream 
3 tbsp unsalted butter
1 tsp vanilla extract
½ tsp coarse sea salt (plus more for sprinkling)
Toppings
1-1/4 cup  raw roasted cashews- roast in skillet and sprinkle with a bit of kosher salt.
Shortbread crust
Pre-heat oven to 350°F.  In a 9X9 inch pan,  Spray bottom and sides  throughorly with vegetable spray and set aside. Cream together butter and sugar. In a separate bowl, mix together flour and baking powder.
Beat the dry ingredients into the wet for several minutes until it is no longer crumbly and forms a dough ball.
Using your hands, press the dough into the bottom of the 9X9 pan. Works easier if you wet palms slightly.
Bake for 15-20 minutes, until edges are just starting to brown. Allow to cool.
Salted Caramel
In a heavy-bottomed medium saucepan, stir together the sugar and rice syrup. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat.
Once the mixture becomes liquidy and begins to simmer, do not stir. Allow to simmer for 4 or so minutes, until it turns a dark amber color. If it starts to caramelize faster on one side than another, gently swirl the pot to mix. 
Stir in the butter, and gently pour in the cream, vanilla and salt, this will bubble, stir with a clean spatula. Continue to cook, stirring occasionally, for another two or so minutes until it thickens slightly.
Stir in half of the cashews. Pour the caramel/cashew mixture over the cooled shortbread crust. Tilt the pan to get the base completely covered. Scatter additional cashews and sea salt.
Allow to cool for 30 minutes and store in airtight container.
cashew bars

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