Monday, February 19, 2018

Butternut Squash Soup

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I am just using up the last of the winter squash harvested from the garden last fall. It keeps really well in a cool dark location (like a basement or garage). This soup may be one of my all time favorites with butternut squash. It has simple ingredients that end up tasting rich and complex. This recipe is lightly adapted from this one on Simply Recipes, and their addition of an apple is key! I swapped out vegetable stock for chicken, and added coconut milk. The result is a warming winter soup that is delicious and easy to make.

Butternut Squash Soup


Ingredients:

1 tsp olive oil
1/2 onion, diced small

2 carrots, peeled and diced
1 rib of celery, diced
1 apple, cored and diced

1 butternut squash, peeled seeded and cubed
6 cups water
1 tbsp vegetable bouillon

pinch of cinnamon
pinch of nutmeg
salt and pepper to taste
5.5 oz can of coconut milk

Optional: pumpkin seeds for sprinkling on top.

Directions:

Heat the olive oil in a large stock pot over medium heat. Add the diced onion to the pot and cook for 5 minutes, stirring frequently. Next add the carrots, celery, and diced apple to the pot and cook to let them heat through for another 5 minutes or so. Then you want to add the diced squash, water and vegetable bouillon. Bring the soup to a boil, and then lower the heat to let it simmer for around 30 minutes. You want to cook it until the vegetables and apple are soft and cooked through. Once they are ready, blend the soup with an immersion blender or by processing the soup in small batches in a blender. Once the soup is blended, return it to low heat and add a pinch of cinnamon, a pinch of nutmeg, salt, and pepper to taste. Finally stir in a small can of coconut milk and serve.

Monday, January 29, 2018

Breakfast Fried Rice

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I have been working on this recipe for a long time, and it took many tries to get it just right. I finally went back to basics and used this recipe as a jumping off point. I traded the eggs for tofu, used liquid smoke instead of bacon, and added nutritional yeast as well. We have really been enjoying the resulting savory dish for any time of day.

Breakfast Fried Rice
Ingredients:

2 cups brown rice (cooked according to package directions) or 4 cups leftover rice

1 block of firm tofu

1 tbsp toasted sesame oil, divided
5 green onions, thinly sliced

3-4 tbsp soy sauce or Braggs Liquid Aminos
1 tbsp rice wine vinegar
pinch of cayenne pepper
1 - 3 tsp liquid smoke (to taste)

3 tbsp nutritional yeast
1 tbsp toasted sesame seeds (use black ones for a nice pop of color)

Directions:

Prepare the rice and reserve. Drain the tofu and cut into small strips or squares.

Heat a non-stick frying pan over medium heat and add half of the sesame oil. Fry the tofu in the sesame oil until it browns on both sides. This takes about 20 minutes, and it works best if you don't mess with it too much. Give it some time and then flip it. Once the tofu is done, take it out of the frying pan and reserve.

Add the rest of the sesame oil to the pan and add the rice. Cook the rice until it is heated through then add the scallions. Once the scallions have begun to heat add the seasonings, which are the soy sauce, vinegar, cayenne, and liquid smoke. Toss to distribute the seasonings and then add the tofu back into the rice mix to combine. Top with the nutritional yeast and sesame seeds.




Friday, January 19, 2018

Golden Granola

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Having recently fallen in love with all things golden milk (golden milk overnight oats, golden milk chia pudding, golden milk the drink, etc.), I thought to try the flavor profile with granola. The turmeric has a wonderful almost nutty quality to it which adds a nice dimension of flavor to this lightly sweetened granola. Try this as a cereal, over vanilla soy yogurt, or on top of an acai bowl.

Golden Granola


Ingredients:

3 cups rolled oats
1/2 cup shredded coconut
1/2 cup raw sunflower seeds
1/4 cup hemp seeds
1/4 cup buckwheat
2 tbsp chia seeds
2 tbsp black sesame seeds
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp cinnamon
pinch of ground ginger
dash of nutmeg
1 tsp turmeric powder

1/2 cup maple syrup
1/4 cup coconut oil
1 tsp vanilla

*Optional: crystalized ginger pieces or dried fruit.

Directions:

Preheat your oven to 400 degrees. Combine the dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl. This includes the oats, coconut, sunflower seeds, hemp seeds, buckwheat, chia seeds, black sesame seeds, salt, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and turmeric powder.

Next, pour the maple syrup, coconut oil and vanilla into a microwave safe measuring cup or bowl and heat in the microwave just long enough for the coconut oil to melt so the wet ingredients can be combined. Pour the sweetened coconut oil over the oats and stir well to coat everything evenly.

Spray a large baking dish with cooking spray and pour in the oat mixture. Bake for 25 minutes, and be sure to stir it every 10 minutes or so until the granola is evenly browned. Once the granola has cooled add the crystalized ginger, or another dried fruit to the mix.

9 servings of 1/2 cup each.

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Slow Cooked Steel Cut Oats

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This is a basic steel cut oat recipe that isn't too sweet. It is a canvas that can be topped with just about anything. Try granola, bananas, apples, berries, nuts, chocolate, shredded coconut, seeds or stir in pumpkin or cocoa. This makes a great breakfast that you can reheat throughout the week. Put it in the microwave for a minute or two and then stir in a tad more water or non-dairy milk to make it nice and creamy.

Slow Cooked Steel Cut Oats


Ingredients:

1 1/2 cups steel cut oats
6 cups water
1 cup chopped fresh dates (120 grams) or 1/4 cup sweetener (sugar or maple syrup)
1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp cinnamon

Optional: Add 1tbsp molasses, 1/2 tsp allspice, and a pinch of ground ginger for a richer flavor that hints at gingerbread.

Directions:

Put all the ingredients in and cook on low for a few hours (start checking them at around 4 hours. I find that they have a nice texture after 4 1/2 hours. They can cook a lot longer than that, though. You can leave it overnight, but know that without occasional stirring the oats will stick along the edges. With some effort in the morning you can scrape it off and it's not a big deal. I like to cook them during the day on Sunday when I can check on them, and then eat them reheated throughout the week.

For 6 servings.

With chopped dates:                                                 With 1/4 cup sugar:
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Monday, January 15, 2018

Refried Beans From Scratch

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My mother in law recently gave us some new crop pinto beans, and they are so good. The fresh taste of the beans makes it worth the effort to make them from scratch and then fry them up. If you plan ahead for the cooking time in your crock pot, these come together quickly once the beans are cooked through. I find that with these fresh pinto beans, I don't even need to soak them.

Refried Beans


Ingredients:

1 cup dried pinto beans
3 cups water

1 tsp olive oil
1/4 yellow onion, diced (1/3 cup diced onion)

1 tsp liquid smoke
Pinch of garlic powder
Salt to taste

Optional - add a pinch of cumin and a pinch of dried oregano

Directions:

Cover the beans in a slow cooker with the 3 cups of water and cook on low for several hours (older beans can take up to 8, while new crop beans can be done in 4). It is okay to cook them for a long time. On low the water won't evaporate too quickly and you want the beans to be soft for mashing.

When the beans are cooked through, heat the oil in a non-stick frying pan, and saute the diced onion on medium low until it begins to soften. Once the onions are translucent, add the beans to the pan and mash them with a potato masher. Add some of the cooking liquid to get a nice consistency. Keep mashing and adding a little liquid until they are to your liking. Add a tsp of liquid smoke and a pinch of garlic powder. Taste the beans and add a little salt.

Makes 3 cups of refried beans



Wednesday, January 3, 2018

Cherry Chocolate Granola

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This granola is decadent and almost dessert-like. It is great for snacking when you want something sweet, try it on top of yogurt, on a smoothie bowl, or with ice cream. The chocolate and the tart cherries are a perfect match for hearty granola.

Cherry Chocolate Granola



Ingredients:

3 cups rolled oats
1/2 cup shredded coconut
1/2 cup raw sunflower seeds
1/4 cup hemp seed hearts
1/4 cup flax seeds
1/4 cup cocoa powder
1/4 tsp salt

1/4 cup coconut oil, melted
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 cup maple syrup

1/4 cup mini chocolate chips
1/2 cup dried cherries

Directions:

Pre-heat your over to 400 degrees. Combine the dry ingredients (oats, coconut, sunflower seeds, hemp seeds, flax seeds, cocoa powder and salt). Then add the wet ingredients to the dry (coconut oil, vanilla, maple syrup. Mix it well to coat the oats with the oil and syrup.

Spray a large rectangle baking dish with cooking spray and pour in the oat mixture. Bake for 25 minutes, stirring every 10.  Once the granola has started to cool, add the chocolate chips and the dried cherries.

Monday, August 7, 2017

Chocolate Protein Waffles (Gluten Free)

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I have made these waffles every week for the past month and we still want more, so I decided they were worth a post. These go with syrup and are also really good leftover. We have been making them into little waffle sandwiches with sunbutter and banana - yum!

Chocolate Protein Waffles


Ingredients:

2 cups soy milk
2 tsp vinegar

1/3 cup water
2 tbsp ground flax seeds
1 smashed banana

3/4 cup buckwheat flour
3/4 cup oat flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
3 tbsp sugar
3 tbsp cocoa powder
1/3 cup protein powder (chocolate is great)

3 tbsp oil

optional: chocolate chips

Directions:

Combine the soy milk and the vinegar in a measuring cup and set aside to let curdle. Mix the water and the ground flax seeds and set aside to let thicken (it helps to stir it occasionally).

Mix the dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl. This is the buckwheat flour, oat flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, sugar, cocoa powder and protein powder.

Then add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients which are the soured soy milk, flax egg, and the oil. Mix well (a few clumps are fine) and let the batter sit for 10 minutes while your waffle iron heats up. It is important to let the batter sit because the oat flour and the protein powder will soften up and incorporate more as the absorb the liquid in the batter. Also, the baking soda and the vinegar will react to leaven the batter and make it a bit fluffier.

Once your waffle iron is hot and the batter has rested, cook the waffles according to your waffle iron instructions. With mine, I find it works best to cook them a bit longer than indicated by the waffle maker and they turn out great.

This recipe made 14 - 4 inch waffles. The nutritional information below reflects that size waffle.