Monthly Archives: December 2016

Pumpkin Coconut Breakfast Cookies

I hope you all had a nice Christmas; it is my absolute favorite holiday! I love the lights, the music, the food, I love acting out the nativity with our family and reading the Christmas story and one of my favorite things is having Scott around for several days in a row. This year we were so pleased that his parents were able to join us for Christmas from NC, and Scott was home for almost a week straight which was heaven on earth!

I am so excited to share this breakfast cookie recipe because I am loving them! It’s more of a quick, grab-and-g0 healthy snack or breakfast, rather than a dessert-type cookie. I freeze almost the entire batch and then eat one or two a day, straight out of the freezer; they don’t require any thawing time. If you don’t freeze them, just know that they are a softer cookie and I think after day two you’ll find they get even softer when stored in a tupperware so you’d probably want to freeze them after a couple of days. I waited a day before I froze mine. For those of you that care, each cookie is 100 calories when you make 36 cookies(I’m doing My Fitness Pal again for a short time which I don’t love, but because of all the yummy Christmas foods we still have around the house, I’ve been snacking way too often so this’ll help keep me in check). I found this recipe in this month’s  Runners World magazine, which was submitted by Elyse Kopecky and though her recipe only makes 20 cookies, I found when I used my cookie scoop, 36 was a more accurate amount. If you make them bigger, then obviously, the calorie count per cookie will be higher.

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Here are the ingredients:

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You can buy almond flour, or you can grind your own if you have a high power blender. I just straight up throw in whole, raw almonds and grind them for several seconds, mix it with a rubber spatula, grind for several more seconds, and it’s done!

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I added raisins and a handful of chopped walnuts but you can leave them plain or add some chocolate chips or whatever else you like.

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I mix all my ingredients together in a large mixing bowl with a wooden spoon.

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 I baked these on my silicone mats. I love these baking mats because of ease of clean up and I love that I can slide the whole mat off the cookie sheet and onto a cooling rack with the cookies all in place and it only takes a second.

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Have them cool completely before storing them in a tupperware or in freezer ziploc bags.

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Have a safe and Happy New Year!

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THE RECIPE:

Pumpkin Coconut Breakfast Cookies
*Makes about 3 dozen

2 c almond flour (I make my own grinding a little less than 2 c, whole raw almonds in my Blendtec)
1 1/2 c rolled oats
1 c unsweetened shredded coconut
2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp sea salt

1 c pumpkin puree
1/2 c pure maple syrup
1/2 c melted coconut oil
optional: 1/4 c raisins, chopped dates, walnuts or chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line a cookie sheet with a silicone mat or parchment paper and set aside. In a large mixing bowl add your flour, oats, coconut, cinnamon and salt. In a small mixing bowl combine your pumpkin, syrup, and oil. Add the pumpkin mixture to the dry ingredients and stir to combine. Add in any optional raisins, nuts, chocolate chips etc and stir until incorporated. Using a cookie scoop, scoop out dough and place on cookie sheet baking for about 25 minutes, until golden(check after 20). Makes 3 dozen cookies.

You can eat these right away or store in a tupperware container for a couple of days. They are also great cold and I like to freeze most of mine and eat them straight out of the freezer (they don’t require any thawing time because they’re a softer cookies).

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Filed under Breakfast, Desserts, gluten-free, Snacks/Sides/Appetizers, vegan

Honey Sweetened Poppy Seed Bread

Christmas is only five days away! We have Scott’s parents coming in town today from North Carolina, Thursday the kids get to play Christmas songs on a grand piano at a local grocery store, Saturday we will act out the nativity and sing lots of Christmas songs, and Sunday after stockings and gifts, we’ll go to church for an hour where Scott, me and Elisabeth will be performing (our church will do all musical numbers with a little narration on Christmas Sunday; no actual classes), and then we’ll come home and have a brunch with cinnamon rolls and egg casserole! So it’ll be a full and joyful week! And I cannot tell you how long I have been dreaming about having cinnamon rolls. I only make them a couple of times a year because 1) they’re time consuming and 2) (and most importantly) I love them SO much that I always eat too many .  Here is my overnight cinnamon roll recipe(who wants to be making dough Christmas morning? not me) if you want to give them a try; they’re all whole grain and SUPER soft and delicious.

We made a couple of different foods to give away as neighbor/teacher gifts, a chex mix and this poppy seed bread which is made with half whole wheat flour and is sweetened with honey and apple sauce. We kept a loaf for our family and gave away three mini loaves and the next day my kids begged me to make more, and this time a double batch because it “wasn’t enough” :)! We love poppy seed bread at Christmas, and all the time!

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THE RECIPE:

Honey Sweetened Poppy Seed Bread
*Makes 2 8×4 inch loaves, or 6 mini loaves

1 c butter, melted
1/3 c unsweetened applesauce
2 Tbsp coconut oil, melted
1/2 c warm mlk
2 eggs
1/2 c honey
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp almond extract
1 c all-purpose flour
1 c whole white wheat flour
1 tsp sea salt
2 tsp baking powder
1 1/2 tsp poppy seeds

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Grease and flour 2, 8×4 inch loaf pans (or 6 mini loaves, or a combo of the two) and set aside. Cream butter, applesauce, oil, eggs, milk, honey, and extracts. Add remaining ingredients and cream until blended but not over mixed. Bake loaf pans 45 minutes (edges browning, tooth pick comes out clean), mini loaves 35 minutes.

*Always check pan five minutes before timer goes off because different ovens cook differently so it may need a little less or a little more time.

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Filed under Breads, christmas, Desserts

Crock Pot Black Bean Enchilada Soup

December is an abnormally busy month with all the recitals and performances we have added into our already very full schedule, and because of that, I’m finding that the only way we’re going to get home cooked, warm meals is to prepare in the morning or afternoon, which means we’re doing a lot of crock pot meals this month. I’ve taken a few soup recipes we enjoy and made them crock pot friendly, so if you’re a busy and need to prep in the mornings like me, give this one a try. And it is more of a medium heat when it comes to spices, so if you’re more on the mild side, omit the jalapeno and you could even decrease the chipotle chili powder as well, but we love spicy foods, even the kiddos, so we do it all!

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This is fairly easy, and it probably only takes about 10-15 minutes of work. You’ll chop and saute your veggies, and while they’re sauteing, I mix together all my spices and put them into the crock pot, then I put the cooked veggies, tomatoes and a cup of the broth in the blender, blend til smooth, dump that into the crock pot with the rest of the broth, add your torn up corn tortillas and cook it on low all day or on high for about 4 hours.

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Once it’s all done cooking, add in coconut milk and some black beans for texture and extra yumminess! Serve this warm and top with whatever toppings you like; I LOVE avocado so that’s always a must for me, and my kids also add some cheese and tortilla chips.

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Crock Pot Black Bean Enchilada Soup (vegan, gf)
*serves 8

1 Tbsp olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
1 Tbsp minced garlic
2 carrots(12 baby), peeled and chopped
2 stalks celery, chopped
1 bell pepper, chopped
1-2 Tbsp jalapeno pepper, chopped  (canned or fresh; can omit this if you’re more of a ‘mild’ person)
1 1/2 tsp chili powder
1  tsp cumin
1 tsp ground coriander
1 tsp dried oregano
1/2 tsp chipotle chili powder
6 c vegetable or chicken broth
1 14.5 oz can diced tomatoes
5-6, 6” corn tortillas, torn into quarters

salt and pepper to taste
1/2 c coconut milk (full fat from a can; I like the thai kitchen brand)
1 1/2 c black beans

Toppings:
chopped green onions
sliced avocado
cheddar cheese
tortilla chips

In a frying pan, saute vegetables in olive oil over medium heat until vegetables are tender. Chop and saute your veggies, and while they’re sauteing,  mix together all the spices and put them into the crock pot. Put the cooked veggies, tomatoes and a cup of the broth in the blender, blend til smooth, dump that into the crock pot with the rest of the broth, add your torn up corn tortillas and cook it on low all day or on high for about 4 hours.  Add coconut milk and black beans and stir to combine.  Serve warm topped with any of your favorite toppings ( I LOVE avocado).

*You can also make this on the stove; just saute veggies in a larger stock pot and add spices, broth and tomatoes(blending the tomatoes in blender or with immersion blender) and bring to a boil. Tear the tortillas and add them to the soup. Cover and turn the heat down to low and simmer 30-45 minutes or until tortillas are breaking apart. Remove from heat and add the coconut milk and beans.

 

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Filed under crock pot, Dinner, gluten-free, Soups, vegan

Cranberry Ginger Green Smoothie

Green smoothies are a staple in our house. I have had one every morning for the past 6+ years. I have a basic recipe I follow (water, greens, fruit), but it changes slightly through out the year, depending on what fruits are in season etc.

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After Thanksgiving I had half a bag of cranberries leftover that I decided to freeze, not sure what I was going to do with them, and then when I went to make my green smoothie that morning, I pulled open the freezer drawer to grab some frozen fruit and there they were, just waiting to be used. I also cut up fresh ginger root, into small maybe 1/8 inch slices, and freeze those as well. Be sure to keep them in a ‘freezer’ ziploc bag. I’ve had trouble with freeze burned foods when I try to freeze them in normal sandwich bags.

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Start with your water and greens, and blend them in a high power blender until smooth. Then add in your fruit. I use about 10 cranberries which is around 1/4 cup. And here’s my half a lemon with the peel cut off, and my slice of ginger. In the recipe I put the lemon as optional, and that’s because it tastes great with or without, I just love using it because lemons are so alkaline and a great cleanser, but it’s okay if you don’t use it. Blend everything until it’s smooth, which is two, 50-second cycles on my Blendtec.

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I love this Pioneer Woman mason jar I got at Walmart last year. I use it every day. I love the handle because I often drink this smoothie as I’m driving kids to school in the morning and it’s nice to have something to hold onto to…less spills for me this way :). Enjoy!

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THE RECIPE:

Cranberry Ginger Green Smoothie (vegan, gf)

*makes about 40 oz

12 oz cold water
2 handfuls power greens (mixture of spinach, kale and chard. Can do just spinach)
1 stalk celery, cut in half
optional: 1 small handful parsley (parsley removes toxins and metals from your body; great cleanser)
optional: 1/2 lemon, peel cut off (another great cleanser and very alkaline)
1 apple, cored
1 banana, peeled
10 frozen cranberries (about 1/4 cup)
1/8” thick slice of ginger (fresh or frozen)
1 c frozen strawberries
1 c frozen pineapple (or frozen blueberries)

Pour water into high power blender. Add in greens and blend until smooth. Add remaining ingredients and blend until smooth (My Blendtec gets to the consistency that I like in  two, 50 second cycles).

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Filed under Breakfast, Smoothies, vegan