Banana Oat Muffins (No Flour!!)

Banana Muffins - the pear and plum

These little muffins are the perfect way to eat oatmeal while driving your child to school.

serving size: makes a dozen muffins

ingredients:

  • 2.5 cups old fashioned oats 
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 3/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 cup plain low fat greek yogurt or keifer
  • 2 eggs
  • a bit less than 1/2 cup maple syrup or honey
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 2 ripe bananas, (the more ripe, the better)
  • Nuts and things (pecans? dried fruit? chocolate chips?)

directions:

  1. preheat oven to 350
  2. grease the muffin tin (I use coconut oil)
  3. Put dry ingredients in the food processor and pulse for 10 sec.
  4. Add everything else except for the “nuts and things” and process till smooth
  5. Fold in nuts and pour into the muffin tins
  6. Cook for 18 min.

Fennel Citrus Salad

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A refreshing salad that is super quick to put together but still looks really fancy. A couple things are key with this salad:

1) The citrus has to be as sweet

2) The fennel has to be shaved thin.

If you’ve got both, perfection ensues. If not, its still worth making, just not as good as it can be .

(makes a small bowl of salad for 2-3 people.)

ingredients:

  • 1 Large Orange
  • 1 Large Grapefruit
  • 1 Bulb Fennel – Shaved on a mandolin – reserve some of the fronds for decoration
  • 1 Avocado, sliced in wedges
  • 1/8 C Olive Oil
  • 2 T Rice Vinegar
  • 1 T Honey (may need more depending on sweetness of citrus)
  • Fresh cracked Black Pepper

directions:

  1. Peel the orange and the grapefruit. Slice in rounds and then separate in to small pieces. Put in bowl
  2. Shave the Fennel and toss with citrus
  3. Cut Avocado into wedges and toss with citrus.
  4. In a separate bowl, combine the Olive Oil, Rice Vinegar and Honey and mix until emulsified. Pour over salad. Add cracked pepper on top and toss lightly to coat.
  5. This one looks really pretty served on a platter, especially if you leave some of the citrus rounds whole for decoration. You may also want to use some of the Fennel fronds for color as well.

Quick Pancakes/Waffles

Quick Pancakes:Waffles ++ the pear and plum

Sometimes you want no fuss pancakes or waffles. These are ours. I’m pretty picky about waffles too and these really work. I based them on another recipe and then tweaked it. Original Recipe here

(serves 4 )

ingredients:

  • 2 Cups All Purpose Flour
  • 3 teaspoon Baking Powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon Salt
  • 1 T Sugar
  • 2 Eggs
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon Vanilla Extract
  • 1 1/2  Cup Milk (I’ve used Cow milk or Coconut Milk – both are great)
  • 1/4 Cup Yogurt (We use full fat Greek yogurt but any kind will work)
  • 1/4 Cup Melted Butter (or 3 T Coconut Oil)

 

directions

  1. Get out two bowls. (The wet ingredients go in the large one and the dry ingredients in the other one.)
  2. Mix up the dry ingredients (Flour, Baking Powder, Salt, Sugar).
  3. Whisk together the wet ingredients (Eggs, Vanilla, Milk, Yogurt).
  4. Pour the dry into the wet and mix until the large lumps are mixed in.
  5. Gently mix in the butter.
  6. Cook on your favorite pancake making pan or waffle iron.

 

Super Quick Quiche

Quick Quiche, the pear and plum

Like, really quick. Like, you wake up and want quiche and it turns out to not be much more work than making pancakes. AND this includes a home made crust. No lie. And theres nary a rolling pin or pastry cloth involved. I know, it just keeps getting better.

~makes one, 9 inch crust~

crust ingredients:

  • 1 Cup Flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon Salt
  • 1/4 Cup Olive Oil
  • 1/4 Cup Ice Water

filling ingredients:

  • 3 – 4 Eggs
  • 1 Cup Milk
  • Swiss Cheese, as much as you like
  • Sauteed Mushrooms, as many as you like
  • Other options: Scallions, Dill, Spinach

directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees
  2. Mix crust ingredients together and press dough into the bottom and up the sides of a pie pan.
  3. So the important part about Quiche fillings is that they are cooked down enough so that you aren’t adding a ton of extra vegetable water to your recipe. Pre cook the veggies! After they’re cooked down,  put them in the pie pan. Also add chunks of cheese now.
  4. Mix up your eggs and milk and pour over everything in the crust.
  5. Bake until firm, about 20 minutes.

**note: The crust is yummy but very plain and might be better with rosemary?

Strawberry Shortcake

Shortcake ++ the pear and plum

This is a dense and perfect shortcake. It’s just a little bit sweet, making for a simple and lovely strawberry shortcake. (sometimes I eat it for breakfast. Ok. I always eat it for breakfast when its in the fridge). It’s my Grandma Leona’s recipe and as I found out tonight, and the last 3 times I’ve made this, if you use any mixers other than your hands, it wont come out right. (ie. too fluffy) So dig in people and get ready to cook vintage.

ingredients:

  • 2.5 Cups Flour
  • 2.5 teaspoon Baking Powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon Salt
  • 1 T Sugar
  • 1 Egg
  • 1 Cup Milk (I’ve used cows milk or coconut milk – no difference for me)
  • 2 T Butter

directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 375°
  2. Blend together the dry ingredients in a large bowl.
  3. In a smaller bowl mix together Egg and Milk.
  4. Cut 2 heaping Tablespoons of Butter into pieces and drop into the dry ingredients. Knead it into the flour with your fingers until you cant find anymore lumps.
  5. Slowly add wet to dry, mixing until combined.
  6. Oil a 9″ baking dish and put the dough in. Smoosh it down if it doesn’t settle by itself.
  7. Cook for about 20 – 30 minutes or until the top is golden brown.
  8. Serve with any kind of fruit and cream!

Chia Almond Date Bars

Chia Almond Date Bars

Not only a yummy snack but also a way to occupy a 2 year old inside when theres a snow storm outside. Just dumping ingredients into a food processor and pressing buttons. Perfection. Also, the ingredient possibilities are endless! Expect some additions to this post.

3.29.13 Recipe updated and overhauled. I nixed the Raisins and added dates instead. Also added Pecans and Coconut Oil.

ingredients:

  • 1/2 Cup Almonds
  • 1/2 Cup Dates
  • 1/4 Cup Pecans
  • 1 tsp Coconut Oil
  • chia seeds (for the top)

directions:

  1. Dump the almonds into the food processor and process for a minute.
  2. Add the dried fruits and process until everything is chopped fine and sticks together when you press it.
  3. Form into bar shape or roll into balls. Pour chia seeds on a plate and press into them.
  4. Store in the fridge.

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tags: Energy bars, snacks, toddler activity, cooking with kids, kids in the kitchen, kitchen aid food processor

Chia Pecan Granola Bars

Chia Pecan Bar

These are based on my fabulous friend Kathy’s granola bars. I’m always searching for fast breakfasts because well… ahem… breakfast bores me to death. (yea, I’m working on that).  These, on the other hand, make me excited to eat in the morning.

note: While very customizable, the big thing to remember when choosing additions to this recipe is watching the balance of sweetness. Dried fruits are super sweet – nuts, not so much.

ingredients:

  • 1 T Coconut Oil
  • 3 T Nut Butter [I used my homemade Sun Butter]
  • 1 Banana, mashed
  • 1 T Real Maple Syrup
  • 2 Cups Oats
  • 1/4 Cup Almonds, chopped fine
  • 1/4 Cup Pecans, chopped fine
  • 2 T Chia Seeds
  • 5 Whole Dates, chopped (around 1/3 Cup)

directions:

(You’re not going to cook anything, we just need it all warmed up so its easier to mix SO we’re going to do all our mixing in a medium sized saucepan, on the lowest heat)

  1. Put Coconut Oil, Nut Butter, mashed Banana and Maple Syrup in the pan. Mash until its all combined.
  2. Add in Oats and mix well to combine.
  3. Add Almonds, Pecans, Chia Seeds, Dates and mix up really well.
  4. Push mixture into an 8×8 square glass pan and refrigerate.
  5. Put them in the fridge until they are ready to be cut into bars. Store in fridge.

(future ideas: apricots, honey, sunflower seeds, coconut flakes, sesame seeds, wheat germ, almond butter)

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tags: Snacks, Breakfast, Healthy Bar, Breakfast on the go, DIY Granola Bar, Chia Bar, Energy bar, protein bar,

Sweet Cornbread


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Basic. Easy. Awesome. I did cut down on the sugar (imagine that) and i feel like its perfect…. not cake and not plain bread. Y.u.m.

(Original from here)

(Makes one 8 inch cake or a dozen muffins)

ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cups flour
  • 1/3 cup sugar [original recipe said 2/3]
  • 1/2 cup cornmeal
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/4 cups whole milk
  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1/3 cup oil [we used Safflower Oil – next time try Coconut Oil]
  • 3 tablespoons butter, melted

directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F Grease 8-inch square baking pan or cast iron skillet. [ARG! My skillets are too large and too small so i used an 8 inch pyrex. Not nearly as exciting as an iron skillet.]
  2. Combine flour, sugar, corn meal, baking powder and salt in medium bowl. Combine milk, eggs, oil and butter in small bowl and mix well. Add to flour mixture and stir just until blended.
  3. Pour into baking pan or skillet. Bake for 35 minutes or until wooden pick comes out clean.
  4. Cover in homemade butter and you are the happiest person alive.

(For corn muffins, spoon batter into muffin cups 2/3 full. Bake for 18-20 minutes or until wooden pick comes out clean. Cool for 5 minutes before removing from pans.)

 

Horchata

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Horchata is great to have in the fridge because you find uses for it all day long… coffee creamer, added to oatmeal or your morning cereal,  in smoothies or just a protein rich snack. But BEWARE. This looks like milk but it is not. Do not go to take a sip of this and think milk or milkshake. I did and it was almost a deal breaker. BUT when I finally started appreciating it for what it was, I loved it. Also its vegan and gluten free. win-win (win)

original recipe here

(Makes about 7 cups)

ingredients:

  • 1 cup raw cashews (or use raw or blanched almonds)
  • 2/3 cup white rice, uncooked (medium or long-grain preferred)
  • 2 1/2 cups water + 3 cups water
  • one 3-inch cinnamon stick [We used two]
  • 2/3 cup sugar, or to taste* [We only used 1/3 cup and it was perfect for us]
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract (increase to 1 teaspoon, or to taste, if you love vanilla)

directions:

  1. In a large blender canister, Vita-Mix canister, or large bowl combine cashews, uncooked rice, 2 1/2 cups warm tap water, cinnamon stick, cover and place in the refrigerator for 8 to 12 hours.
  2. Remove canister from the refrigerator, remove the cinnamon stick, and blend the mixture for 2 to 3 minutes on high speed, or until blended as smoothly as possible.
  3. Add sugar (to taste), vanilla extract, 3 cups more water and blend again for 2 more minutes, or until mixture is as smooth as possible.
  4. Let the blender mix sit for about a minute. (all of the solids will sink to the bottom). Then blend again for an additional minute.
  5. If desired, strain horchata through a sieve or cheesecloth [The Almond mush at the bottom of our first batch was a bit grainy for drinking but was lovely in oatmeal so if you strain it, keep both components.]
  6. Serve immediately as is, over ice, or refrigerate and serve chilled, shaking before if mixture has separated. Horchata will keep in the refrigerator for 3 to 5 days; use common sense.

Notes from PearAndPlum:

FIRST time through we made this with almonds (which is the the traditional way) and it was great.

SECOND TIME, we tried cashews and it was a much smoother drink. We also added 2 cinnamon sticks instead of the 1 it calls for and sweetened it with a combo of honey and sugar instead of just sugar.

NEXT TIME we may also use some lime zest?

Notes from original recipe: *I used traditional recipes as reference for the sugar (and they use more than I did). You may wish to start with 1/3 cup sugar, and increase from there if you prefer something less sweet. You can use another form of sweetener, to taste. All amounts are to taste. If you are serving over ice, it will also water down and become less sweet, something to keep in mind. This is a sweet beverage; it’s not supposed to be “barely sweet”; it’s supposed to be sweet. The Mexicans are not shy with sugar; they pour sweetened condensed milk over sweet potatoes as I witnessed in Mexico City. If you prefer a thinner horchata increase the amount of water, to taste, or strain it. Whatever blender you use, blend, blend, blend. Depending on type of blender used, and taste preferences, strain if desired.

tags: almond milk, cashew milk, gluten free, homemade nut milk, mexico, oatmeal, rice milk, smoothies, vegan, drink, breakfast, snack

Sweet Potato Breakfast Pizza

BreakfastPizza

I often see pictures of food and then, too lazy to really read all the steps in the recipe, I make up my own version. I use what I have available and do whatever I think I need to do to get it done as fast as possible. This is one of those and it turned out really really good (they dont always).  I used our large iron skillet to cook the pizza but i would imagine a pizza stone would work just fine. (Original recipe here.)

My recipe makes one personalized sized pizza.

ingredients:

  • 1 Sweet Potato
  • 1 Clove Garlic, minced
  • 1/4 onion, minced
  • about 9 oz of store bought dough (about 1/2 bag) [No time for homemade.  I’m hungry]
  • a little coconut oil to grease the skillet
  • some black beans [as many as you want on your little pizza]
  • a little parsley
  • 1 green onion, chopped
  • grated cheddar cheese [as much as you want]
  • 1 egg

directions:

  1. Saute the sweet potato with garlic and onion in a small pan.
  2. Meanwhile, in a large oiled cast iron pan, make dough into a pizza shape
  3. Put cooked sweet potatoes, black beans, parsley and green onions onto the dough
  4. Grate cheddar over the top
  5. Crack an egg in a dish (in case of shells or a nasty egg. You dont want this last step to ruin your dinner)
  6. Create a little nest of ingredients and pour the egg in.
  7. Bake at 400 for about 20 minutes.  I kept checking the bottom of the pizza to make sure it could stay in longer and let that guide my cooking time.

 

tags: breakfast, dinner, vegetarian, cast iron skillet