Posts tagged ‘honey’
I sure hope you aren’t tired of pumpkin yet! I have a delectable baked dish that can triple as breakfast, a quick snack or a healthy dessert…now that’s a win in my book.
It’s Secret Recipe Club time again this month, and I was assigned Laura’s darling blog, A Healthy Jalapeño. Not only does Laura have a laundry list of recipes I want to try, she seems like “my type of people”…and the way she describes herself as “having no special talents, but I am passionately curious” is one fantastic statement. I searched through multiple recipes that I debated on trying this month, but finally settled on Baked Oatmeal with Pumpkin and Bananas. Not only is this a dish that’s appropriate for pumpkin and holiday season, I was enticed by the layered look and the combination of flavors. Prior to making this dish, I hadn’t combined pumpkin and bananas but I loved it!
Since I can’t leave well enough alone, I made a few changes based on preference and what I had on hand: I swapped out quick oats for quinoa flakes, used maple syrup instead of brown sugar and added maple extract to quinoa mixture. I wound up adding milk to the flakes as well because the mixture appeared to be a little dry for the middle and wanted to ensure it would cook. I also threw in 1/3 cup of pepitas in addition to walnuts (in lieu of pecans) for a little color and to play up the pumpkin flare.
I served this both warm and cold and thought it was delicious! If you don’t like it cold though, I blame it on my cold-pizza and refrigerated leftover fetish :) For a healthy dessert option, I drizzled my “yogurt glaze” over a slice to amp up the protein and to give it a more dessert-like feel.
Baked Quinoa with Pumpkin and Bananas (adapted from A Healthy Jalapeño)
Gluten-free, Oil-free, Dairy-free, Nut-free Option, Vegetarian, Refined Sugar-free
4 medium ripe bananas, (the riper the better) sliced into 1/2″ pieces*
1 (15 oz) can organic pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie)
1 tbsp honey
2 Tbsp maple syrup (or 2-3 tbsp coconut sugar, sucanat, or brown sugar)
1 cup uncooked quinoa flakes (or gluten free quick oats)
1/2 cup chopped walnuts (or pecans) – omit for nut-free and substitute more pepitas if desired
1/3 cup pepitas
1/2 tsp baking powder
3/4 tsp cinnamon
1 1/2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
1/4 tsp nutmeg
pinch of sea salt
1 1/2 cups unsweetened Almond milk, divided (or any milk you desire)
1 egg, whisked
1/4 – 1/2 tsp maple extract (optional)
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
Garnish and serving ideas (optional)
a drizzle of maple syrup or honey
sprinkle of cinnamon or nutmeg
extra pepitas, walnuts or pecans
1. Preheat the oven to 375°. Lightly spray a 9 x 9″ ceramic baking dish with cooking spray or coconut oil (my favorite) or line with parchment paper and set aside.
2. Arrange the banana slices in a single layer on the bottom of the ceramic dish. Sprinkle 1/4 tsp of the cinnamon, honey and cover with foil. Bake 15 minutes, until the bananas get soft (I didn’t cook them until mushy though).
3. Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, combine the quinoa flakes (or oats), pepitas, 1 cup of milk, half of nuts, baking powder, remaining cinnamon, pumpkin pie spice, nutmeg and salt; stir together.
4. In a separate bowl, whisk together the pumpkin, maple syrup, maple extract, maple syrup/sweetener, remaining 1/2 cup of milk, egg, and vanilla extract.
5. Remove the bananas from the oven, then spread the quinoa mixture over the bananas. Next, pour the pumpkin mixture over the quinoa, spreading to make sure to distribute the mixture as evenly as possible. Sprinkle the remaining nuts over the the top.
6. Bake for about 32-38 minutes (mine baked for 38), or until the top is golden brown and the pumpkin and quinoa has set. Garnish with nuts/seeds/yogurt if desired and serve!
*If you aren’t a fan of bananas, try swapping out apples for a different taste.
Orange Chicken (or Beef) is a popular Chinese dish that I don’t usually get to order when eating out. I tend to miss out on the traditional stir-fries and specialties because I ask them to “leave off the sauce” because they typically contain gluten. When I’m in the driver’s seat in my kitchen though, I prefer to prepare dishes that are “off limits” when eating out to jazz up my menu choices…plus, then I won’t feel deprived!
When I was assigned Karen’s Kitchen Stories this month for the Secret Recipe Club, I was drooling over all her homemade bread recipes… but I admit, I was intimidated to try and de-glutenize them while staying true to the original recipe. After reading that Karen participates in Wok Wednesdays, I was sold on both her Velvet Chicken and Orange Chicken recipes! I’ve always been intrigued with the way Chinese restaurants prepare their meats, I never could achieve the same texture or tenderness when using a wok…until now!
I opted to cook an un-fried version of Orange Chicken to lighten up the dish a bit (you know, so I could have more of it!). Taking cues from Karen’s Velvet Chicken post, I used the water velveting technique instead of the oil one…. woohoo! The result was very tender chicken! Turns out you can also prepare other proteins in the same way — beef, pork, shrimp — so I will have to try my hand at that soon.
I made a few adjustments to the orange sauce by subbing coconut aminos for the soy sauce, adding a bit of ginger, using honey instead of brown sugar and using crushed red pepper flakes in place of the cayenne. I also chose to use coconut oil for sauteeing and tapioca starch instead of cornstarch, but either works in this dish! I served the chicken with brown rice sprinkled with green onion and sauteed broccoli, carrots and onions — a balanced, healthy and yummy meal!
Lightened up Orange Chicken (adapted from Karen’s recipe)
Gluten-free, Grain-free, Nut-free, Soy-free, Dairy-free, Refined Sugar-free
For the Chicken
1 Tbsp tapioca starch (or cornstarch)
1 Tbsp canola oil or other neutral oil
1-2 tsp minced ginger
Cooked brown or white rice, or quinoa
- In a large bowl, marinate the chicken in the combined soy sauce, vinegar, oil, starch and egg whites for about 20-30 minutes at room temperature.
- Mix the sauce ingredients in a bowl, whisk and set aside.
- Saute the garlic and ginger in 1 tsp of oil in a saucepan for about a minute until fragrant, add the above sauce, and bring it to a boil. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for about 15 minutes. Add the starch/water mixture and stir until the sauce thickens. Remove from the heat, and cover to keep warm.
- In a 2-quart saucepan, bring one quart of water and 1 tbsp oil to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat to low and add the chicken to the simmering water, stirring to prevent the pieces of chicken from clumping together. Cook until the chicken is opaque, but not cooked through, about 1 minute. Drain the chicken in a colander
- In a wok or large sauce pan over high heat, swirl the remaining tablespoon of oil into the wok. Add the chicken and saute for three minutes or until cooked through. Re-stir the sauce mixture and pour half over the chicken. Stir fry, until the chicken is cooked through and the sauce is slightly thickened, about 1-2 minutes. Toss with remaining sauce.
- Serve immediately with steamed rice/quinoa and sauteed veggies if desired!
Summer is finally here and I am feeling the heat! You know what that means — light, fresh and fruity flavors are popping up in recipes around the blogosphere and in magazines like crazy!
I was delighted when the creative and trendy ladies of EDGE Marketing and Design approached me a couple months ago to come up with a “summery recipe” to be featured in their upcoming issue of their magazine. These women are not only spunky, stylish and creative, but they are beyond talented and know how to run a cutting-edge marketing business. They say “yep, we’re small. but we like to make a big difference.” Nicely stated!
I immediately started brainstorming a unique summer treat that would be worthy of making their fashionable publication. I knew I had to stick to my roots and feature a rockin’ gluten free recipe that wasn’t complicated or require strange ingredients.
Bam, it hit me. How about create a dairy-free ice cream recipe that plays off the flavors of the popular lemon poppyseed muffin? Unique yet approachable and oh-so-refreshing, this vegan ice cream will satisfy your sweet tooth but not weigh you down.
It’s free of refined sugars, gluten, dairy, eggs, nuts and soy. Eliminate the optional vodka (though it produces a more creamy end result), and you have a grain-free Paleo treat…and isn’t Paleo all food rage these days?
I also adapted my pie-crust to create a quick grain-free, dairy-free almond shortbread. Simple, easy and delicious. What’s not to like about ice cream and cookies? Dig in and enjoy the flavors of summer!
Dairy-Free Lemon Poppyseed Ice Cream
Gluten-free, Grain-free option, Vegan, Dairy-free, Nut-free, Soy-free, Quick
1 can of full-fat coconut milk
1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (I used two medium lemons)
1/4 cup agave or your favorite neutral flavored liquid sweetener (honey or coconut nectar)
1 Tbsp gluten free vodka*, optional
pinch of stevia to taste or 1 more Tbsp of sweetener
zest from one lemon
1 Tbsp poppy seeds
lemon zest for serving
Grain-free Almond Shortbread cookies (recipe below), for serving
1. Combine all ingredients in a medium bowl and whisk well until combine.
2. Let chill for 30 minutes to an hour.
3. Pour into your ice cream maker per your maker’s instructions. (I used a Cuisinart 1 1/2 quart ice cream maker and it took about 20 minutes to freeze down).
4. Serve immediately for a soft-serve version or pour into a freezer-safe container and let freeze until hardened. Scoop and enjoy!
Yields 4 cups
*This recipe was tested with Smironoff vodka, but Chopin and Blue Ice Vodka (make sure you buy the blue bottle as it’s potato based) can be used. The vodka allows for a creamier ice cream consistency but feel free to omit if desired.
Grain-Free Almond Shortbread Cookies
Gluten-free, Grain-free, Dairy-free option, Egg-free, Vegan, Quick
2 cups almond flour (I buy mine from nuts.com)
2-3 Tbsp coconut palm sugar or other granulated sweetener
1/8th tsp sea salt
1/4 cup + 2 Tbsp butter, ghee, coconut oil or Earth Balance softened (use oil or Earth Balance for vegan and dairy-free)
2 Tbsp honey or agave (use agave for vegan)
1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
1/4 tsp almond extract
optional add-in: 1 tsp poppyseeds
1. Preheat your oven to 350F. Line a baking sheet with a silpat mat or parchment paper and set side.
2. In a small bowl, combine dry ingredients until combined. Add wet ingredients and stir until a thick dough forms.
3. Refrigerate dough for 20-30 minutes until chilled.
4. Line your counter with parchment paper and place ball of dough. Roll out to 1/2 inch thickness and cut into rectangles (or roll into a log and cut into slices).
5. Transfer carefully using a spatula to baking sheet and bake cookies for 8-10 minutes. Remove cookies from oven and let cool completely before moving as they are fragile when warm. Enjoy!
Yields 15-16 cookies
Grilling and summer go hand-in-hand. Even though we’ve had some pretty stormy (and sometimes chilly) days here in Montana, I have been determined to fire up the grill and get in the summer groove!
My favorite way to prepare salmon is on the grill and I’ve had my eye out on new ways to enjoy my favorite fish. When I was assigned the lovely Bewitching Kitchen for this month’s Secret Recipe Club reveal, at first I was torn on what I wanted to make. Sally’s blog is chock-full of creative recipes – including Brazilian dishes, ethnic recipes and an extensive list of homemade breads – with about 20 different recipes calling my name! I ultimately opted for her Chipotle-Rubbed Salmon Tacos with a unique salsa for a fresh and grill-friendly flare…YUM! I make a few adjustments based on my pantry and preferences…I increased the lime juice a bit and pumped up the seasoning in the rub by adding some sea salt. I LOVE strong flavors so I upped the amount of vinegar a tad and added lime juice in the salsa, but I’ll even add a fresh herb like cilantro next time for that extra punch. I wound up using a small, peeled typical cucumber (instead of English), honey and coconut sugar in lieu of the white sugar and homemade mayonnaise in place of the yogurt to keep it dairy-free.
A note on the salmon– The fattier the fish, the better in my opinion. I ADORE salmon but sometimes the Sockeye variety doesn’t turn out as buttery and succulent as I was going for. Since I was looking for wild-caught salmon, I wound up using Sockeye instead of Alaskan due to availability.
Chipotle-Rubbed Salmon Tacos
Gluten-free, Grain-free option, Paleo-friendly option, Dairy-free, Nut-free, Soy-free
2 Tbsp yogurt, mayo, or sour cream (use mayo or Vegenaise for dairy-free)
2 tsp fresh lime juice
2 tsp chipotle chile powder
2 tsp finely grated orange zest
2 tsp coconut palm sugar (or other granulated sugar)
1/2 tsp sea salt
1 pound skinless wild Alaskan salmon fillet, cut into 4 pieces
1 Tbsp plus 1 tsp extra-virgin olive oil
8 corn tortillas (substitute salad greens or lettuce cups for paleo/grain-free)
1 Tbsp plus 1 tsp extra-virgin olive oil
1 Hass avocado, mashed with a generous squeeze of lime juice
salt and pepper
1 cup finely shredded cabbage
1 Granny Smith apple, cut into 1/4-inch dice
1/2 English cucumber or , cut into 1/4-inch dice
1 ripe tomato, cut into 1/4-inch dice
1/2 small red bell pepper, cut into 1/4-inch dice
1/2 small red onion, finely diced
1 jalapeno, deseeded and deveined, finely diced (optional)
1 + 1/2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
1 tsp agave or honey
salt and pepper to taste
fresh chopped cilantro, optional
1. Prepare the salsa by mixing in a bowl the apple, cucumber, tomato, bell pepper, and onion (if using). Add the vinegar and sugar, season with salt, and reserve. It can be prepared hours in advance to intensify the flavors.
2. In a small bowl, mix the yogurt with the lime juice, season with salt and pepper, and reserve. In another small bowl, combine the chipotle powder with the orange zest and sugar. Rub each piece of salmon with 1 teaspoon of the olive oil and then with the chipotle–orange zest mixture. Let stand for 5 minutes.
3. Heat the tortillas either in a low oven, wrapped in foil, or on top of a flame (my method of choice), until they are softened and heated through.
4. Meanwhile, heat a grill pan. Season the salmon with salt and grill over high heat until nicely browned and just cooked through, about 3 minutes per side. Gently break each piece of salmon in half. Spread the mashed avocado on the warm tortillas and top with the salmon, Apple- Cucumber Salsa and the cabbage. Drizzle each taco with the lime/yogurt and serve right away.