Category Archives: Gluten Free

Lentil Meatballs & Veggies in Spicy Coconut Curry

Wow.  This fierce cold weather feels like the coldest, eyelash blistering cold I have ever experienced.  And they’re threatening tomorrow will be worse.  Doesn’t that mean I don’t have to leave my house? No?!? Ah well in that case I need to make something to eat while I’m at school that I know will warm me up.  Lately it’s been all things lentil meatballs well because I love real meatballs but I don’t love eating meat right now.  Oh and I prefer doing little to no work- enter this recipe and why you will love it once you try it.

stew 2Plus when you make your own “meatballs” you can hide things in them, like vegetables 😉

This looks like a lot of work but it is truly very easy and so worth it so get to it!

Ingredients for Meatballs:

***if you don’t have all these ingredients just find a good curry powder you like

1 cup lentils (I used yellow & brown), (soaked for minimum 6 hours)

1 cup vegetable stock

1 10oz package mushrooms

1-2tbsp coconut oil

1/2 zucchini

1 onion

3 garlic cloves

1 tsp turmeric

1 tsp cumin

1 tbsp curry powder

1 tsp chili powder

1 tsp ground ginger

1 tsp ground coriander

few dashes dried basil and oregano

2 tsp worchestire sauce IF you want to have more meaty flavor

1/2 cup gluten free rolled oats

1 egg

up to 1/4 cup quinoa flour (or other flour to help bind)

*optional 2 tbsp tamarind for sweetness or 1 tbsp honey

meat2

Directions:

-Rinse lentils well and add to pot with 1 cup vegetable stock.  Bring to boil, then simmer with lid on till all liquid is gone.

-Meanwhile, pulse the mushrooms in a food processor and then add to bowl.  Pulse zucchini, garlic & onion and don’t overfill your food processor and make more work for yourself.  I find it’s easier just to do them one at a time.

-Add onions to large pot on medium-high heat and add all the spices.  Saute for 3-5 minutes till soften.

-Add garlic and saute for 2 minutes, careful not to burn.

-Add all the vegetables and saute until softened. Season to your taste and adjust spices as needed.

-Remove from heat and once cooled slightly add egg, lentils, flour & oats.  Your consistency may have more or less water so add the oats and flour in smaller amounts as needed. You can lightly mash half the lentils to help bind also, or do quick spin in food processor.

-Preheat oven to 350 degrees, use 1/8 cup measuring cup and kitchen gloves to roll meatballs. Should make at least 12. Bake until brown all over about 30 minutes. Flip after 15 minutes.

Ingredients in Coconut Curry:

1 onion, chopped

2 yellow & 2 red bell peppers, chopped

1 cup chopped carrots

3 garlic cloves, minced (use the food processor!!)

2 tsp grated fresh ginger

1 tbsp curry powder

1 tsp turmeric

1 tsp chili powder

1 tsp cumin

1 28oz can crushed tomatoes

1 can lite coconut milk (or full fat if you prefer)

1/2 cup vegetable stock

fresh chopped cilantro to taste

*optional red pepper flakes

Directions:

-Over medium-high heat, add 1 tbsp coconut oil to same large pot you used for meatballs & add onion.

-Add all your spices. You should be tasting as you go and adjust as needed.

-Add bell peppers & carrots, stir to coat.

-Add garlic & ginger, stir for 2 minutes.

-Add can tomatoes, coconut milk & veggie stock. Bring to boil and reduce with the lid off for 10-15 minutes.

-Season to taste.  Take your meatballs and crumble into curry and garnish with cilantro.

bite

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New Year, New Granola Bars

Happy New Year to everyone!  Hope you all had a great 2012, I know I did!  New apartment, new school, new blog, new job, quit new job, lots of new recipes & my most favorite part is the shiny little something sitting pretty on my finger 🙂 .  Now how is 2013 going to top that?  I’m not sure but I do know I’m starting with a new granola bar recipe.

Close up

I much prefer a chewy, denser granola bar minus the sugar, soy and other strange ingredients that comes in most store bought. Oh and gluten free at a non-gluten free price. So after you try scouring the stores for something fitting this description you can come back here and make these because they are good and healthy. I plan to only eat one once they come out of the oven and put the rest in the freezer for crazy school days which are approaching fast.

Oh & how cute is this jar of honey?  The only added sweetness is 1 tbsp honey drizzled over the bars when they are finished baking.

Granola Bars 003

Now although I quit counting calories, carbs and all other things numbers a long time ago, when it comes to bars I always read the ingredients list and make sure it’s not just like eating a candy bar.  So I have provided the “counts” below, but really if you eat healthy & understand what a portion size is I encourage you to not rigorously count & make yourself crazy, it’s quite liberating.  And while I’m sure many of you have wonderful health resolutions, try to  focus on the fact that you can have an abundance of fruits and vegetables without consequences.

Granola Bars 002

Original recipe by Kathy.

Ingredients:

-1.5 cups GF rolled oats

– 2 tbsp sunflower seeds

– 1/4 cup pumpkin seeds

– 2 tbsp chia seeds

– 3 tbsp cacao nibs

– 1/4 cup mixture walnuts and pecans

– 1 egg

– 1 & 1/4 cup unsweetened almond milk

– 1 tbsp cinnamon (yes 1 tbsp)

– 1 tsp vanilla extract

– 1 tbsp coconut oil, melted

*optional, drizzle 1 tbsp honey when pull out of the oven

(I prefer no fruit to avoid too much food combining and blood sugar spikes.)

Directions:

-Preheat oven to 350, mix dry and wet separate, combine, bake 30-40 minutes, & eat!

bar

Makes 9 Servings

Calories: 161

Fat: 3.2g Saturated, 3.1g PUFA, 1.4g MUFA

Carbs: 12.9g

Fiber: 4g

Sugar: 0.8g

Protein: 5g

These bars are high in manganese, vitamin E, copper & magnesium with smaller amounts of zinc, iron & calcium. These minerals work to boost your thyroid, immunity, stabalize blood sugar, red blood cell production and the list goes on & on. So grab a bowl and start mixing to fuel up for the new year!

Asian Buckwheat Soba Noodle & Chicken Bowl

Now who doesn’t love a gorgeous bowl of noodles doused in asian flavors with a bit of crunchy peanuts and grilled chicken?  Throw in some fresh, crisp vegetables and scallions and before you know it there’s an asian invasion inside your mouth.  Wow I am really on a roll lately with bad puns…

I found these noodles at this AMAZING gluten free store that is unfortunately 2 miles away from my house. I say that because it has an incredible selection which makes my eyes bulge and my money disappear.  The appeal of packaged gluten free goodies is often too tempting and I opt not to indulge but some hearty gluten free pasta can be a girls best friend when in a pinch.  Fortunately for the BF though because this was an on the fly meal for him, which he gobbled up faster than I could clean the kitchen.

The saddest part though is that I made this months ago, like maybe in June?? :/ I took the pictures and then left them to hang out on my phone till tonight when I was cleaning through the clutter and all the 1,000’s of apps I have & don’t use.

This is your fairly classic combination of asian flavors and as always make to order for your own taste buds!

Ingredients:

1 serving buckwheat soba noodles (always check for GF if needed. Soba does not guarantee it is GF)

1 carrot julienned

1 serving pre-cooked chicken

2 scallions cleaned and sliced

1 tsp grated fresh ginger

1 clove garlic, minced

2 tbsp tamari

1 tbsp sesame oil

1 tsp oyster or fish sauce

1 tsp red chili flakes

1 tbsp rice wine vinegar

**flavorless or peanut oil to saute, or for lighter version use low sodium vegetable broth

Directions:

-Boil noodles according to directions.

-Mix sauce ingredients, tamari-vinegar.

-Add oil or veg broth to a deep skillet, bring to medium-high heat and add carrots, ginger, garlic.  Saute for 2-3 minutes until carrots soften.

-Add noodles with a bit of pasta water if needed and mix together.  Add your chicken & sauce ingredients & mix till everything is coated and warmed up.

-Remove from heat and add scallions and 1 tbsp crushed peanuts or sesame seeds if allergic to peanuts.

Put in your favorite bowl and eat up!

Ramen Remix

Another Thanksgiving has come and gone.  I hope yours was as good as mine.  Taking two days off from papers, studying and all things responsibility was the perfect way to recharge for the last leg of the semester.  Oh and I made my first pie.  Which was also my first gluten-free pie.  Pie crust- intimidating enough not to mention the no gluten part.  And of course I’m going to keep that a secret until after everyone has eaten and enjoyed it.  Thank goodness for King Arthur flour.

 

Luckily this was a success and a pie to make Paula Deen proud.  Pecan Pumpkin Pie infused with blackstrap molasses rum.  Although if I had came up with the original recipe I would probably call it Butter and Brown sugar pie with a smidge of pumpkin. Since it was Thanksgiving though I don’t feel guilty about eating a weeks worth of saturated fat.  Plus the bf really wanted pecan pie so this was my compromise.  I got the recipe here.

20121124-192044.jpgI may have had a bit for breakfast today. Pumpkin and pecans are superfoods after all 😉

 

Switching gears to something a little less artery clogging – my take on one of my old favorite staples, Ramen noodles.  I am even feeling ballsy enough to call this Detox Ramen Noodles since it’s filled with veggies, natural broth and miso.  Sounds pretty contradictoy right?  Well the original is a serious health offender and if you are brave I dare you to check out the video of ramen digestion.  It’s out there- and it’s scary.

20121124-192054.jpgI won’t get into the descriptives of the video but I will talk about how easy and delicious this was.  Plus it is still just as comforting and doesn’t give you an MSG hangover.  Especially with the temperatures dropping it has me craving warm and nourishing meals that I can make quickly.  This has become my new favorite go to for chilly nights and no time to cook.

20121124-192103.jpgFor the noodle sub in I used kelp noodles which I would probably eat everyday if they weren’t a tad costly.  They serve a really similar texture to ramen and if you prefer them softer just add them to the broth sooner.  I like them with texture so I add them once I take this off the heat.  This dish is really simple and versatile so feel free to use your favorite vegetables.

Ingredients:

1/2-1 cup vegetable broth (low sodium, gluten free)

1/2 small onion

1 or 2 garlic cloves (I may have used 5. Yes I have a problem)

handful carrots chopped

2 celery stalks chopped

2 handfuls baby kale or other green veg

1/4 cup sliced bella mushrooms

1 tbsp minced ginger, or to taste

1 tbsp miso paste

Dried herbs (I use herbamare)

Directions:

-Warm broth in deep skillet.  Add onions, carrots, celery and saute till slightly softened.

-Add garlic, ginger, mushrooms & any seasonings.  Saute 2-3 minutes.

-Add green vegetable (baby kale cooks quickly like spinach thats why I added it last.  If you have regular kale it will take longer to cook and should be added with mushrooms.) Add noodles now for softer texture- or

-Take off heat and stir noodles into soup.  Add to your bowl and wait until it is cool enough to eat and then add miso paste.  If you add it to the pan it will kill the healthy bacteria and no longer have good probiotics.

Enough your health boosting Ramen!

Sweet & Spicy Greek Turkey Meatballs

Before I talk about food I have to acknowledge the significance of the storm Sandy and send my thoughts and prayers to everyone affected.  Living in NJ it is especially shocking to just see the incomprehensible amount of damage, losses and lives changed forever- in places that are only miles away.  I feel almost ignorant speaking about this in the comfort of my heated apartment with all modern day conveniences available but I hope during a school break to make time to volunteer for those whom have lost everything.  If you are looking to lend a hand here’s a link How to Help

Now switching gears a bit, a meatball recipe not originally mine but Giada’s that I have been eyeing for a while now.  Her show is one of my selected TiVO series and although they are all re-reruns right now I enjoy watching her because she makes everything look so easy.  Luckily these meatballs were really easy to make and so freaking delicious.  I made some changes by using lean turkey (although I do like lamb 🙂 ) reducing the cinnamon and using gluten-free breadcrumbs instead of couscous. Therefore my result was much denser than hers but we didn’t mind it.

I was weary about all the cinnamon and didn’t want this to turn out badly so I only used 1 cinnamon stick and used 1 tbsp cinnamon in meatball mixture and probably 1/2 tbsp ground cinnamon mixed in with the sauce.  I also used fresh mint instead of dried and next time I might add some more fresh herbs to the sauce since I love fresh herbs.  And yes, they were boyfriend approved.

20121103-121857.jpgI had mine over raw zucchini noodles and boyfriend had his over whole wheat penne. As you can see I like my meatball:sauce ratio about 1:1/4 cup.  I thank the acid reflux angels that were with me when I scarfed this down because I was not going to leave anything in my bowl no matter what. (I sometimes suffer from it when using too much lemon, coffee, eating late at night…etc.)  Even the thought of not sleeping because there is a fire-breathing dragon in my esophagus did not stop me.  Thank you angels.

I can’t wait to throw these puppies on a gluten-free roll with some Daiya mozzarella and piles of sauce.  I plan to also make a vegan mushroom based version of these in the future which I know will be amazing and will keep you posted. 🙂

20121103-121929.jpgGo here for Giada’s recipe

Purple Cauliflower, Carrot & Two Lentil Curry

Some cosmetic changes here- what do you think?  I think I’m pretty content with it considering my severely limited technical skills.  I’m not even going to tell you how much time I spent on it.  I guess I have “Sandy” to thank for this. Or “Frankenstorm” or whatever they’re calling this wicked rain for the next 5 days?!? I hope everyone is in a safe and dry place.  Do I really need to fill my bathtub with water??

I am loving all things lentils right now.  I feel like I need to make up for lost times we should have had together.  So I will do my best not to put up 100 lentil recipes in the next month but I can’t promise anything.  I am the type of person that when I find a new ingredient or a forgotten favorite, I eat it relentlessly until I get sick of it.

I’m loving lots of cauliflower lately too.  It’s such a modest vegetable with its white, lackluster appearance you would never know it is a “superfood”.  Packed with nutrients, fiber and oh this lovely purple variety has anthocyanins which are scientifically proven to eat up cancer cells.  Who doesn’t love that?

So if you’re a regular visitor of my blog you know I’m a huge Indian food fan.  I have spiced up my eggs, sandwiches, and desserts with Indian spices like ginger, cumin, coriander and the latest favorite is fenugreek seeds.  I have mentioned them once before since they are filled with lots of health benefits you would never suspect.  Some health benefits in just 1 tbsp is they have 20% RDA of iron, 3 grams protein, 3 grams of fiber, and trace amounts of copper, calcium, zincmanganese and magnesium.  They have also been used medicinally for hundreds of years to improve those lovely female symptoms, as well as digestive troubles.  It has been clinically proven to help with insulin sensitivity and to have cardiovascular benefits.  So with the endless list of health benefits I have begun to add 1 tsp of seeds to my smoothies in addition to the regulars like turmeric, occasionally red maca powder and matcha green tea powder {typically not all together} With all the other ingredients you can’t even taste in a smoothie but be sure you have a good blender because you wouldn’t wanna chomp down on these tough little seeds.  Alternatively, you could grind to a powder first and then add.

But I digress from this lovely, very easy curry which I made to have ready for lunches or dinners.  It’s what you might call a “one pot wonder”.  Curries may seem quite intimidating with the sometimes lengthy list of ingredients and foreign spices, but it really is such an easy dish to make.  Plus then if you are not a huge spice or heat fan, you can lessen the amounts to suit your taste.  I definitely encourage you to dabble in Indian cuisine if you have not yet tried, it can be extremely healthy and comforting without much skill required.  Did I mention crazy delicious?!? Plus curries are so versatile you can make it with practically any seasonal vegetables.  I used carrots and cauliflower but feel free to use some of your favorites!

To prepare lentils:

1/2 cup red lentils, soaked at least 8 hours

1/2 cup green lentils, soaked min 8 hours

1.5 cups vegetable broth

small handful curry leaves

Directions:   {red lentils cook faster than green lentils, so if you need the “perfect” texture keep them separated from soaking to cooking.  I don’t mind and didn’t notice that one was more/less cooked than the other.}

Rinse them in a colander and check for stones or debris.

Soak them for at least 8 hours in filtered water- {this is not required but I soak all nuts, beans, seeds and grains to reduce phytic acid and make easier to digest}

Rinse again in a colander till water runs clear.

Put 1.5 cups vegetable stock in large pot and bring to boil.  Add lentils and reduce to medium simmer with lid on.  Check and stir.  You may need to add more broth depending on how you like your lentils.

When all the liquid is gone, add curry leaves and pour into a small bowl, set aside.

Ingredients for Curry:

1 tbsp extra virgin coconut oil

1 tbsp butter or ghee

1 tbsp fenugreek seeds

1/2 sweet onion chopped

1-2 cups baby carrots chopped roughly

2 tsp curry powder

1 tsp turmeric

1 tsp ground coriander

1 tsp cumin

2 tsp red chili powder

3 garlic cloves

1- 1 inch piece ginger minced or grated

1/2 can tomato paste

1 head cauliflower, purple or regular chopped

1/2- 1 cup vegetable stock

Directions:

 Use large pot and add coconut oil, butter or ghee.  Add fenugreek seeds and once fragrant add chopped onion and carrot, saute for 3 minutes.

Add dry spices and stir well to coat.

Add cauliflower, garlic, ginger, tomato paste, and vegetable stock.  Stir everything well and put lid on with medium simmer.  Check in 10 minutes for the cauliflower to be fork tender.  Taste and season as you like.

You could add fresh cilantro but I didn’t want it to overpower the curry leaves so I left it out.  You could also make it richer with canned coconut milk which is always delicious.

 

Now all I need is some fresh naan…yummm.

Dark Chocolate Pancakes Topped with Cinnamon Apple & Almond Butter

Yes, Dark Chocolate HEALTHY Gluten Free Pancakes. And as you can tell by the title, the fun doesn’t end there. Slices of cinnamon dusted apple & roasted almond butter. For dinner.

Oh and do yourself a favor and leave your guilt at the door– because this is barely 300 calories. Scouts Honor.

Unfortunately I am not the genius who came up with this recipe- Katie is. I snagged from her Brownie Batter Pancakes which I have made many times, but this time I used buckwheat flour. (I’ll just tell you there is a reason she doesn’t use buckwheat flour for desserts…but I really like buckwheat and I needed to use it up).

I have been craving chocolate like my life depends on it lately and I generally don’t get strong cravings for things. So I had thought earlier today that I will satisfy my craving and find a 70%ish chocolate bar with minimal sugar to eat as a meal. That’s a perfectly good rationale right?

Chocolate really does have considerable health benefits consisting of antioxidants, ability to lower heart disease risk by increasing blood flow and increases your happy hormones 🙂 Luckily I did not impulsively dive for the first chocolate bar and went on through my day because I decided I didn’t want to start on a sugar spiral. Boy am I glad I did because this was WAY better than a chocolate bar. Plus, no sugar crash, no guilt, just a big happy grin at the end of my day. Oh yes, this was my dinner- and I’m not gonna lie I think it might happen again tomorrow.

I used Katie’s ratios for making the pancakes but I use

1/4 cup buckwheat flour

5 tbsp almond milk

1 tsp baking powder

1 tsp vanilla extract

1 secret tsp matcha green tea powder {it’s a secret from your taste buds ;)}

1 packet stevia

4-5 drops vanilla stevia

Then I just fry them up in a smidge of coconut oil as about 5 small or (you can do 2 large). If you stop there with the recipe it’s only about 130 calories. But why would you stop there?

In the past I have used her banana peanut butter to top these off but I am obsessed with all things apples lately- literally have to eat 1 everyday.

Oh and I’m really sorry if this is your first time hearing about Katie’s blog. Not only because you have been missing out on some seriously delicious eats, but now you probably won’t sleep tonight because you are reading all of her posts. Don’t worry we’ve all been there.

Now it’s time to indulge in a sinful but not sabotaging dinn-ert 😉

Sprouted Lentil Loaf with Sweet Potato & Mushrooms, Vegan,GF

Say what? Lentils? Sprouted? Do I plant it?

I am guessing those who are new to lentils and sprouting are thinking some of those thoughts. Well, if lentils and sprouts are new to you, allow me to introduce you. Lentils are a seriously underestimated “superfood”. They are packed with protein, iron, b vitamins, fiber and lovely properties to help balance your blood sugar and lower cholestrol. Yeah I know, you have been missing out on a seriously healthy food. Plus it gets better. When you “sprout” things you can triple the amount of nutrients in them- without lifting a finger. No it’s not exactly magic, but just nature doing its thing.

You can sprout any seeds like sunflower or even quinoa as well as beans (not outta the can silly- gotta be uncooked) and lots of other things. All you have to do is soak the grain or seed overnight in filtered water, drain and rinse it well the next morning, and let it chill on the counter in a jar or mesh strainer. You can get a fancy sprouting jar but it’s not necessary if you have a strainer. Those lentils sprouted for I think 3 or 4 days, which just means every few hours I rinsed the lentils (which is especially why I like using mesh strainer) and just let it hang out on my counter in the strainer.

So when you are sprouting you are actually re-activating enzymes that had these “enzyme inhibitors” on them otherwise they would be sprouting all the time and go bad very quickly. That is another thing- when you sprout the amount will double in size and they only last about a week so make sure you are going to eat them!

So with all of these sprouts I thought I was going to do a sprouted lentil hummus but then I changed my mind and decided to try a lentil loaf. Which is kinda funny since last week I made a Spinach Turkey Meatloaf even though I didn’t show you guys 😉 Plus I just got lots of great produce like sweet potatoes, carrots and mushrooms so the decision was made! Oh and you know I’m going to tell you this was super easy right? And I don’t think I need to tell you how healthy carrots, sweet potatoes and mushrooms are…

This is the perfect lunch or dinner for the week and if you have a food processor you just made your life a whole lot easier. Oh and did I mention it’s boyfriend approved? Yes I was not even going to ask him to try it but he did- and then took another taste. And then asked if he could have some for lunch. And we know he is a mans man when it comes to all things “loaf” so I encourage you to try this on your picky men. And if you don’t want to put the tiniest bit of effort in and sprout your lentils then just cook them according to the package. There are lots of different kinds so make sure you follow the directions! 🙂

Ingredients:

(If you sprout, take 1 cup raw lentils and follow the sprouting directions– will make 2-3 cups)

**Ignore the broccoli in the photo above, it didn’t survive

2 cups sprouted or 2 cups cooked

1/2 sweet potato, grated

1 cup baby carrots or regular

1 white onion, chopped

3 garlic cloves

1 package preferred mushrooms, I use baby bella

1 tbsp butter or butter sub

1 tbsp olive oil

1/4 cup vegetable broth

1/4 cup cashews

soy sauce

Chili powder, cumin and coriander to taste

Directions:

-Preheat oven to 350, grab loaf pan and lightly spray with non-stick

-Chop mushrooms, carrots, garlic and cashews by placing in food processor and pulsing till roughly same size as the lentil. If its powerful enough do your sweet potato as well, but I grated mine by hand.

-To a large, deep skillet add butter, oil and veg broth to medium-high heat. Add white onion and saute for 2 minutes. Add all processed vegetables.

-Season well with salt and pepper. I also added chili powder, dash soy sauce, cumin and coriander but feel free to season as you wish. (I had wanted to use sage and thyme but I have neither right now.)

-Pulse your lentils to desired consistency, I did it till them were fairly broken up but not completely. Add them to the skillet and continue to taste and season. No perfect measurements with these things just do what taste good 🙂

-Press into loaf pan and cook in the oven for about 15 minutes. {I bet this would be great in muffin tin to make perfect portion size! I would double the batch and freeze the rest!}

– It will crisp the top but the inside will remain soft. If you want a crispier loaf, I suggest using day old bread as you would with bread pudding or how I make regular meatloafs using Stoufers Stuffing Mix. I would use half of the package and just mix it in at the end, you may need more liquid so add small amounts of vegetable broth. ( I can’t vouge for results though I haven’t tried this, just a suggestion)

* I wanted to keep mine gluten free so I didn’t use any bread or bread crumbs.

This would be a great vegan option for Thanksgiving!

I sliced about 7 large slices and have my lunch packed for the week now. Yummy and comforting vegan superfood! I am going to try a BBQ version of this soon so stay tuned! 🙂

I am thinking of making some mashed cauliflower to go with this.  Talk about a nutrient dense meal!

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20121021-144832.jpgI am loving fall right now, how about you?

Raw Sweet and Salty Mocha Almond Cacao Truffles

Quite a wordy title eh? Well I could probably use another 1000 different adjectives and it still wouldn’t do these truffles justice. If you are a chocolate, sweet, salty, coconut, nutty, chewy, crunchy, mocha, did I mention chocolate?- Lover, then you are at the right place because these are insanely good. And easy, which can mean trouble. So if I’m referring you to- slim down this recipe to 1 serving {1/4 cup almonds and figure out the rest} But if your like me and you are attempting to test your will power by putting these in the freezing and repeatedly saying I will only eat 2 at a time, then by all means start making these!!

20121006-123736.jpgI rarely ever make treats like these for myself because they can be very high in calories, fat, carb, and sugar dense. But awhile back I bought raw cacao beans because I wanted to make my own raw treats and actually try what real chocolate taste like. Let me do a favor and tell you- it is the most bitter taste ever. Just the smell can blow you out of the water after grinding the beans into powder. But there are some really great health benefits to real raw chocolate, which you have probably heard 1000 times. Or if your like me it is my justification to eating a lot of bitter chocolate. {covered in honey might I add :)}
 
Oh and I apologize, I cannot figure out why it won’t let me un-italicize, wordpress just doesn’t like me today- maybe because it can’t eat truffles…;)
 
Ingredients:
2 cups ground almonds
1 cup raw cacao powder
1/4 cup unrefined coconut oil
1/2 cup honey or agave
1/4 cup cold brewed coffee
3 dates
1/4 cup goji berries
 
Garnish:
1/2 cup coconut flakes
2-3 tbsp coconut sugar
1 tsp himalayn sea salt
 
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Directions:
-Soak goji berries & dates in hot water for 10 minutes to soften
– Grind almonds in food processor if whole to almost meal-like course
-Add everything else & pulse together till you get a sticky, rollable consistency.
-Grab a cookie sheet & cover with parchment paper
-Grab a small bowl & stir together your garnish
 
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-Take 1 tbsp and roll into a ball with your hands (yes, it’s a messy and delicious job) and then roll in garnish. Place on cookie sheet & once finished place in freezer if your using within a few hours or leave them in the fridge in air tight container layered & lined with parchment. I would estimate they keep for a few weeks in the fridge but use your own disgression.
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These bites are packed with MUFA’s from the almonds, lauric acid from the coconut oil, vitamin A & C from the goji berries and antioxidants from cacao!

I use mercola because he cites info from peer reviewed studies.  Now why is it not itializicing here?! Ahh techonology…

Maple Pumpkin Granola, Gf Sugar-Free

I just love catching the first few signs of fall. The chilly nights, leaves starting to change and my favorite comfort foods popping up at farmers markets. Enter pumpkins, apples, squash and why not some fellow regulars like kale and broccoli. But we’re not hear today to talk about anything green. Today it’s all about crunchy, nutty, good for you granola with lots of pumpkin.

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That’s one thing I particularly love about pumpkin is that under that orange versatile sweetness is actually is a superfood packed with vitamin A fiber and it’s low calories! Not too mention it’s so versatile.

So for whatever reason when I think of fall granola is something that comes to mind and I always prefer to make it since store bought is typically loaded with sugars and preservatives. Plus it couldn’t be cheaper or easier to do!

This recipe is very basic which I’d how I typically make my granola so it is go with most things, but feel free to add walnuts, sunflower seeds, raisins, or even some dark chocolate 😉

Also I never eat Splenda but this is an exception when I use sugar free maple syrup but go ahead and use the real stuff for a true maple flavor.

Ingredients:
3 cups dry rolled oats
1 cup pumpkin purée
1/2 tbsp cinnamon
1 tsp ginger
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup sugar free maple syrup, or preferred sweetener

Directions:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees

Mix everything, spread onto tinfoil lined baking sheet- maybe 2
Bake 20 mins or till nice and crunchy

Feel free to add nuts, seeds, raisins or chocolate!

Oh and just wait till I tell you about that green smoothie it’s my new favorite with 1 secret ingredient you won’t believe us delicious until you try it!!

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