In the next week I will be making double batches of:
om/2011/02/magic-black-bean-muffins/”>Black bean muffins
kale tortillas (substituted for spinach)
In the next week I will be making double batches of:
om/2011/02/magic-black-bean-muffins/”>Black bean muffins
kale tortillas (substituted for spinach)
lk-and-almond-pulp-vegan-choc-chip-cookies/”>almond pulp cookies
Cendrines nut free granola
I cant wait for my freezer to be full of yummy, easy, and mostly healthful treats for everyone. I will let you know how it all goes. Happy Spring!
After an outbreak of hives I am experimenting with removing Dair
y from Emery’s diet to see if he is allergic. So. That makes breakfast a big question as we often have “Red River” cereal, a Canadian classic. (which we all adore with blueberries!)
Good thing Emery is happy with noodles for breakfast. I mean what kid isnt? My kids love noodles. I bought Brown rice fusilli, just to switch it up a bit. Always good to mix up the grains instead of all-wheat all-the-time.
I made a pesto sauce with no cheese. It went over well. So well in fact, I had some for my own breakfast as well!
In the blender I put:
Dairy-free kale pesto:
1T pine nuts
1 leaf kale
2 sm cloves garlic
salt to taste
1/2 lemon juice
and enough olive oil to get the whole thing to move.
Pour over hot noodles and enjoy!
(I should add that the measurements are very rough. I didn’t actually measure at all, and I always taste and add more garlic/lemon/salt to taste. ) Oh, and I used Kale because its what I had, but it would scrumptious with basil, or cilantro…
These were inhaled.
So weird I have so
many things to write about, but the only posts that actually get to the blog are recipes. I think thats because I dont want to loose the recipe and I figure this is the safest place for them! (Better than a greasy piece of paper that falls behind the oven…)
I have been making Almond milk. I am trying my best to make as many of our recipes from ingredients I can keep in cold storage, or in the freezer. I am not preparing for the end of the world. But I do detest grocery stores and so I figure if we can keep the regular purchases to fresh veges and fruit at the farmer's market, then I dont really need to go to for groceries. Milk is one of those things that we need when we run out. I love that I can just whip some up in an emergency.
My recipe uses more almonds than many I found on the nets. That's because I like it creamier. Feel free to experiment. There are tonnes of these recipes around.
soak 2 cups almonds in water over night (8hours)
drain almonds and put in a blender. (you might need to make it in 2 batches)
Add 2 cups of water and blend together. Strain through a sieve into a bowl.
>Repeat blending with more boiled water. Keep doing this until you get as much milk as you can without getting it too watery. I make about 4-5 cups of milk from 2 cups of almonds. Keep in the fridge. You can sweeten it with maple syrup if you like, but its sweet enough for us.
ALMOND-PULP VEGAN CHOC CHIP COOKIES
Now, the big question is what do with the pulp. I tried a few recipes, and this one turned out best. I doubled the recipe and still have pulp. I think I'll make more and freeze them. They are cookies, but with all those nuts, they are high in protein and fiber, so not THAT bad. Plus, I can make them without having to go to the store!! BONUS!
1 1/4 cup almond pulp
1 1/4 cup white flour
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp soda
1/2 cup oil
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 tbl vanilla extract
1 cup chocolate chips
1 cup shredded coconut
1 cup pecans
Mix dry ingredients, separately mix wet ingredients. Add coconut, choc chips and pecans. Mix. form into cookie shapes and spread onto buttered cookie sheet. Cook for 18 mins at 350 Degrees F. The boys LOVED these, but please note, Marcel would like you to know that he felt sick after three. Consider yourself warned.
This photo is terrible. I am so sorry about that. Its really a bad thing to represen
t these things so poorly, because, in all honesty, after you make them, you will want to kiss me.
I wrote the recipe on the back of a school letter, which was copied from my friend (Jessica). Her version was on the back of a grocery receipt, because she copied it from her friend (Melanie), whom I contacted, and who, apparently got it from a friend. You see where this is going.
Its like a spell, that is so treasured and so valuable it is only passed down in secret. Or orally, or on the back of semi-important pieces of paper.
like a magic spell because after you make it, you cant stop thinking “Man? there's NO flour in these?” or “”But how are they so fluffy?” Magic is really the only logical conclusion.
If you don't eat flour or gluten they will be a godsend. We all eat flour, but my kids have a certain chocolate thing. They ate almost two dozen of these, themselves, last week. These are good because they increase the legume intake by, like, 100%, without the kids knowing. I need to make more.
So. Thank you Jessica, Thank you Melanie.
Now, you can all thank me.
1 can black beans rinsed
1/2 cup cocoa
3/4 cup sugar
1 tsp vanilla
2 Tsp oil
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp cinamon
blend all of it in a blender. Pour into greased muffin tins, bake at 350 for 20 mins.
sorry for the bad photo. I make this for breakfast, and its still dark then. but you get th
e point right?
I have been making this for the past few weeks. Whole grains are healthy and easy to use if you make a big batch at the beginning of the week. Once every one or two weeks I boil 1c. whole grain spelt, 1c whole grain kamut, 1c whole grain wheat. Boil in a lot of water for almost an hour. Test to see if they are soft to eat. Once a couple grains have exploded, the lot should be done. Strain, and store in the fridge for up to 2 weeks. I also add 1c cooked black-lentils to the mix.
I use this mix for many things. I include a cup in my bread, I use it in pancakes, salad, soups, stews, really anything I can.
For the breakfast I do this:
pat of butter
handful of whole grain mix (see above)
1T brown sugar (or any amount you prefer to taste
sprinkle of goji berries
1/2 cup plain yogurt (or you can use vanilla, if you omit sugar in the grain mix)
(Its not rocket science here, but I do find if I put the brown sugar or goji berries in too early they can burn, so watch that, and best to keep those till last.)
Heat a skillet on medium heat, toast your nuts in the butter until golden and smell amazing, Add the sugar, and allow to coat the nuts, and then add in your whole grains and let them all toast together. When all is warm add you goji berries. Eat with a dollop of yogurt.
There are many ways to eat this, my mom makes a warm cereal with vanilla almond milk, you can add other nuts and berries. Let me know how your experiments go.
I am going to try to make almond milk and almond yogurt. I am fascinated by the whole idea of being able to make these products out of raw nuts I can keep in the freezer, and never have to go to the store for milk again. Apparently you can even make almond sour cream. I will let you know how that goes. (Husband already thinks Im “nuts” – no pun intended… for making my own yogurt, and bread, but this would qualify me for a whole new level of hardcore.)
I grew up in New Zealand and on Vancouver Island. I heard an add on the CBC recen
tly asking if you remember patchouli oil, or tie-dye in your childhood. If you did, that might mean you grew up in a hippie family. I always thought I grew up in a hippie universe, but don't remember either of those things. What I do remember is potlucks. We went to a lot of potlucks. No one in my family was a picky eater, worried about foods mixing, or strange exotic flavors. For me the best part of a potluck meal was when the plate was almost empty and all the mixed bits and flavors were left to sop up with a piece of bread.
There would be many various foods, and I dont remember anyone “planning” the potluck – figuring out who would bring what. It was all luck of the draw, and as far as I can remember it was always a success… that is until I got to university and realized most of my friends would show up with a bag of chips or a bottle of pop, instead of a hand-made pottery bowl full to the brim with curried whole grains and raisins.
So, when I made this salad today, it brought me back. Straight back to sitting on a woolly rug, in dim light, in a very hot room, with people talking and bustling, leaning against
a carved cedar chest, and looking out the steamy windows at an Island rainforest.
Making a whole grain salad sounds like a logistical nightmare to me. It wasn't until this past month, where we've significantly changed our diet, that I found I had all the ingredients ready and waiting in the fridge. I made this salad in a couple minutes. I made only one for me as I assumed the kids wouldnt want any. Turns out, the oldest ate half of mine and wanted one of his own… another 2 minutes, then I made a third. Point is: its quick, when you are prepared.
The key is making and having whole grains and lentils ready in the fridge. This has taken me a few years as a mom to discover, but there's no turning back now. I'm sure millions of versions of this salad exist and I cant wait to try them all, but this simple one really took me back, to our neighbour's living room floor.
Whole grain curry salad.
2 handfuls pre-cooked mixed whole grains (I used kamut whole grain and wheatberry)
handful of precooked black lentils
small handful of raw cashews
small handful of pumkin seeds
small handful of raisins
two thick slices of cheddar cheese cut into squares
1/2 kale leaf chopped into tiny bits.
white wine vinegar
1 small crushed garlic clove.
1/4 tsp salt
make dressing to taste. 1 part vinegar 3 parts oil. I made extra for later.
mix it all together and eat yourself, or wait for the next potluck.
I have so much to write about FOOD!!! We've changed our diet to be more focused on Abd'u'l-Baha's advice: to focus on grains, fruit, nuts, berries and vegetables. Though we still eat meat and dairy, I am not basing our meals on them as much as I can. I kept family favorites such as “chicken zucchini kabobs” and “chilli” on the menu, but have added “Red-Lentil soup with lemon” (amazing) “Kale salad and Parmesan fish with capers” (mouth-watering) “lentil toasted almond and greens stir fry”, “wheat berry and fruit breakfast”, and lots of nuts and dried fruit to snack on. Among other dishes…I intend on doing posts on our new favorite meals so hang on for that…
I think the biggest change has been cooking various whole grains once a week, keeping them in the fridge and then trying to use them at every meal. I can mix them with rice with soy sauce
for the kids, or add to pancakes, bread, salad, soup… you name it. I probably eat this more than everyone else…as a lunch either as a salad or stir-fried with crunchy veges and nuts – and a few dabs of goat cheese. Mercy me, so yummy, and I feel like a million bucks. (Hot yoga helps too!)
Im also excited at discovering black lentils. Finally found a lentil that doesnt fall apart, and is rich and beautiful in every dish.
Im still figuring how to make meal planners for everyone I know. The one I made for myself has changed my life.
Also moving to the South West has meant I can easily shop at Community Natural Foods and the local farmer's market. I can go to 3 locations, get all I need, in the same amount of time and money I spent torturing myself at Superstore. (less meat, cheese and dairy means less of a bill too!)
Hippy whole-grain and lentil hugs to you all.
(oh, and we saw a birds nest at Sandy beach park, with little egg shells in it. That place is so great too…)
We went berry picking for the first time this year, at lasix online
erryfarms.com/”>Serviceberry farms, near Strathmore. What a pretty place! We picked a couple yogurt containers of berries. Its not a lot but at this time I am more about letting the kids have fun, than making it a chore. We all ate our fair share too! Anyways, I also have a couple bags of frozen rhubarb in the fridge and wanted to make something right away with the berries. There is something so special about picking and eating all in the same day. I made this recipe by combining a few and so I thought I would write it down so I don’t forget. It was worth remembering. This pie was amazing. Perhaps you will enjoy it too.
Saskatoon and Rhubarb Pie recipe.
2 cups white flour
1 stick cold butter (1/2 cup)
Preheat oven at 425F. put flour in food processor. cut chunks of butter and distribute around the blade in the processor. pulse the flour and butter 8 times. Tip mixture into a bowl, add egg, and combine with a spoon. Slowly add water until it just sticks together. Use hands to combine, and then roll out. This amount should be good for one 9″ pie. Butter your pan! Bake crust 10 mins before adding filling.
2 cups Saskatoon Berries
2 cups Rhubarb (cut into 1″ lengths)
2/3 cup sugar
1/2 lemon’s juice
1/4 cup flour
1/3 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup flour
1/4 cup butter
Combine filling in a bowl. mash together the topping ingredients. Pour filling into the crust and sprinkle topping over. I used the bits of pastry left over for the top. Bake at 425 F for 15mins, turn down oven to 350 F for 45 mins.
yes. this was my lunch. I am making salad every day this week. Probably more than once. It may be rai
ning, but it will be summer on my plate, darn it.
The kids had mostly the same, only each item was separated into different bowls.
The great thing about this salad that I NEEDED to share was this:
After all the salad making, there’s always bits of leftover lettuce, greens, half a lemon,a piece of kale, a bit of onion… bits and pieces. Instead of trying to find millions of tiny tupperwares, I put them all in one big one. Then today, after toasting the pecans in olive oil (mmmmmm pecans) I quickly fried up all the lettuce and bits from the bin. Yup. I FRIED the lettuce. They do it in China, so its cool OK? Then I mixed these toasted bits in with crispy cold romaine lettuce and uncooked fresh herbs. sprinkled on nuts, added feta cheese, a boiled egg, a chopped tomatoe, a little raw onion, drizzled on my homemade dressing and OH MY GOODNESS! It was drool-y good.
I also baked some ciabatta buns. fresh. So there was warm buns to go with it. I felt like spoiling myself. I use the recipe from here. I have made them so much its actually easier to make my own than go to the store to buy buns. Only I do have to be prepared as I make the dough the day before.
But once again, this was the clincher for me. fresh bun with warm, fresh, dressed salad? need I say more?
Some random but possibly interesting facts about salad around here:
consumed in this family.
I am designing a meal planner for families, and am gathering recipes for a recipe book to include. This is a little project, that I have been doing on the side for a while. I am gathering family favorite meal recipes – the ones you make over and over.
I dont need very detailed or edited write-ups, but if you could take a couple minutes to write the ingredients, and what you do, I would so appreciate it.
I will test all the recipes, and the ones that I can actually make, I will publish in a pretty booklet. (max around 20…) Those recipes that make the book, will get a free one, and a discount on the meal planner. – see the pic of the planner!
email your recipe back at
Thanks all! I really appreciate it! and I cant wait to start cooking!
So. I want to talk with you about something. Its such a huge topic I am not sure I can bring it up like this, on a random Wednesday and expect to not get you all frazzled. But I can't hold it in any longer.
I am obsessed with finding the best and most efficient way of feeding my family.
So, now you know. Its not really about art, or creativity, but food is so intwined with our very being, that it is impossible to ignore. One can be so creative and inspired by food. Also, when food is taken care of, we have health, energy, and motivation to do more. I feel like there must be a way to do this, to eat well, while leaving room in our day for other stuff. Like glueing, pasting, cutting, drawing, pasting, visiting, playing recorder, and well, all the other invaluable things we must get done, daily.
Now, about this. I think I am missing something. Mothers have been doing this whole cooking and feeding thing for a long time. Why do I find it so complicated. I feel like I need a BA in resource management to make sure my fridge is stocked with food that is not going to rot, and that is healthy, that the three year old will eat, that I find appetizing, and that can be made into three meals, every single day of the week. Theres no weekends here folks… no. this is a job that just keeps on truckin' and if you cant keep up, well, you may find yourself, with a scarf over your face so no one sees you, at the drive thru, buying a MacDonald's Angus Burger. Dont say I didn't warn you. (And no. That was not me, but my evil Doppleganger, who, at times, craves such things… evil
. I tell you!)
So. Man. This post is getting long.
Another thing, for another post – “grocery shopping when you are hungry, with two hungry kids, who scream a lot.” I dont care what high stress job you have, CEO, brain surgeon, pilot, nothing comes close to this. nothing. And I hear you, thinking in the back of your mind “why didnt you eat before you go shopping, so you can do it calmly and peacefully?” This is where I get all wiry. “WE DONT HAVE ANY FOOD IN THE HOUSE! WHY THE HECK DO YOU THINK WE ARE GROCERY SHOPPING!!!”
As you can see. I have issues. So, I have been designing my own little apparatus for the perfect meal planning, grocery shopping resource management, process. Its still in the works. It needs tweeking. Its not an easy task I have set up for myself.
NOW I GET TO THE POINT OF THIS POST! (please, read on, or if you just scrolled to this point, you can start here. sorry)
So, as a research project into my own design for the perfect grocery management apparatus, I have been trying out the one month of easy dinners from “Real Simple” magazine – October 2009 issue. I am doing as per the instructions. No cheating. the heading claims that it is “your stress-free plan for delicious weeknight meals”. Well. I am in week 2. I cant say yesterday's grocery trip was stress free, but I have discovered some new recipes, and well, spent a lot on groceries. I am still phoning grocery stores the find “hominy”. Stress free? I think not…
So much to talk about, and really we didn't even get into the main question on everyone's minds “how much is an air-mile really worth?”. This and more in our podcast, which will be posted this friday. Please listen to it. Please log-in and comment. I really want to know your secrets!!!
I know that routines are important. I try. Our evening routine has been in good form for the last couple of years, but we have been struggling to build a morning routine that we can stick to.
This week, I think we finally nailed it… well, for as long as it lasts.
Mornings consist of a bath for the kids, me getting myself and them ready, daddy making breakfast, all eating together, then Marcel, and me do the dishes, with Em on the Back, while daddy gets ready for school.
Its a subtle, but well fabricated little dance where we get tired bodies, dressed, fed and ready for the day, while maintaining a sense of calm and quiet. Its taken a while to get here. I hope it lasts.
I did a little designing this weekend. I forgot how to do it its been so long! Turns out – I needed a brush in my hand. I was drawing and sketching, but feeling so stunted until I put a huge piece of paper on the board and just got wet paint and swished my way to some ideas. Thats how-ya do it!!!
In other news, Marcel has decided upon his new favorite food: Risotto. Yup. Its quite funny the way he says it so casually, to his four year old friend. “Do you want to come to my house
for Risotto? Risotto is my favorite. I like it with lots of cheese… Do you like Risotto?” Im sure that she doesn't even know what it is. But she liked it. I made the cauliflower one from “Jamie's Italy” for the second time. We use de-alcoholized wine, just to be sure, and boy, it sure goes down well with the kids. Its actually not that hard to make, and you can make a lot of it, and have it for a couple of days. It has lots of veggies, and cheese for protein, and well, with a kid who wont eat much, its been great. (Oh, and if you are actually going to make it, I forgo the anchovy sprinkles, and parsley, for the kids, but for us it sure tastes great…)
I hope to do a lot more posts like this. I am so excited to be learning about cooking over an open fire, that I can’t help but want to share what I learn. I am so fascinated by the concept of roughing it, but eating well. My designer spirit wants to create the ideal camp-food experience. Getting all the food to fit in the car and coolers, being minimal and economical with ingredients, but making it all taste amazing has become a little bit of an obsession for me. Oh, so many things to obsess over…
So, I have discovered the wonders of dry foods. Having two small coolers, that only keep cold a couple of days, it has become so important to have dry foods that will keep for longer, and take up no room in the cold storage department. I have discovered the wonders of bringing some simple dry baking ingredients, that can become bread, sweet treats, pancakes, bannock, or flat breads. (Although, my hippy side can get a little carried away. The last trip I brought a mix of Quinoa and Amaranth flour for our baking needs. Unless you have eaten this mix, and like it, I would suggest mixing it with 3/4 parts wheat flour, as it has a strong flavor… and nearly got me cut off from the whole food prep department…) But the cornbread was awesome…REALLY awesome. So easy and convenient, I will be making it a camping trip staple…
just go easy with the heat on that dutch oven. Those things are HOT. ’nuff said.
From this website:
Braué’s Golden Southern Cornbread
– From Uncle John’s Original Bread Book by J. R. Braué. 1969 printing.
1 cup yellow corn meal
1 cup flour
1 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons sugar
3 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 cup oil or melted shortening
1 cup of milk or water
Dump dry ingredients in a gallon zip-lock bag and mix. At the camp site add wet ingredients and mix in the bag. Do not mix too much or the cornbread will be tough. Grease oven. Bake at 400 degrees for about 25 minutes.
I would suggest letting the corn flour sit in the wet mix for a while to soften the kernels. Eat plain, or with honey.
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