Thursday, June 30, 2011

Pina Colada Smoothie

I found this recipe on 100 days of real food.  The original post is here.

1 1/2 cups frozen pineapple chunks
1 1/3 cups coconut milk

Blend until smooth and enjoy.

I did not think ahead to have my pineapple frozen so I just threw in a big can of cut up pineapple and one small can of coconut milk and a bunch of ice to make it more of a frozen drink.  It probably could have used a little more pineapple (or, really, it just needed some really yummy fresh pineapple) and the ice watered the flavor down, so I would definitely recommend freezing the pineapple first.  However, even with all the substitutions, it was still so very yummy on a very hot afternoon.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Best Salad Ever

This is one of those "recipes" that I can't believe I haven't posted yet.  It is my. favorite. salad. ever. ever. ever.   You all have probably had something similar, but I just wanted to post it on the off chance that someone out there is missing out!

Slivered Almonds
Sliced Strawberries

Combine these items in whatever quantity suits your fancy and try not to eat the whole bowl.  I usually eat a serving bowl size of this salad.

I'd love to find a good recipe for a dressing that's similar to this vinaigrette.  

My other favorite salad?  Nuts about Berries from Zupas.  If anyone has any idea how to duplicate that salad/dressing, I would love any tips.  It is so good!

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Granola Bars

I have been making all of our snacks and doing all of our baking for the week on Mondays for the past month or so, and I have loved it!

It's so nice to get it all done at once, and it actually ends up making less mess in the long run, because I can reuse measuring cups and pans for certain things.  Once I clean things up on Tuesday morning, we are ready to play for the week!  I will admit though, this week I didn't do it and I wish I had.  Storebought snacks are so expensive if you are going to buy snacks that are good for you.

I bought this ebook and it has some good recipes in it and has been a helpful resource.

This granola bar recipe is in there and we have loved them.

I made them with a little cocoa powder and peanut butter.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

No Refined Sugar Strawberry Freezer Jam

Hello all... this is the easiest peasiest jam on the planet.  It literally took me 11 minutes from start to finish to make 2 batches.  I made a ton of the less-sugar strawberry jam a week or so ago, but then I decided I wanted to do some with agave instead.  So this is what I did.

2 lbs. strawberries

1-1 and 1/2 cups agave

1 pkg. less sugar or no sugar pectin

3/4 cup water

Pour the agave into your blender pitcher.  I did 1 and 1/2 cups, but I think it would have still been sweet enough with just 1 cup.  Cut the greens off the top of your strawberries (no need to cut them up more) and throw them into the blender.  Heat the pectin and water in small saucepan until boiling and boil for one minute.  Pour the pectin mixture into your blender.  Pulse a few times in the blender until you have the consistency you want and all ingredients are well mixed.  Pour in containers and let sit for 24 hours or until they set.  Freeze or refrigerate or eat immediately like I did.

Man, I love my blender. :)

Monday, June 20, 2011

Gluten Free? that I have learned so much about so many different kinds of grains and how to use them, we are going on a one month detox diet.  No dairy, no refined sugars, no gluten, no meat.  Any gluten free ideas for me?  I have done some research, but it's nicer to have some recommendations.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Soaking Grains

I don't know how many of you already do this, or at least know about it, but soaking grains was brand new to me up until about a month ago.  Since then, I have done a lot of research and started to incorporate it into our existing routines.  I have found this page to be the most informative and it has a lot of great resources for recipes, etc. as well.  I love that she breaks down how to soak different kinds of grains so that you can take an existing recipe and figure out how to turn it into a soaked version.  Especially if any of you have digestive issues, this might be helpful!  We have made soaked tortillas, soaked whole wheat bread, soaked cereal, etc.  Plus, it's another great way to use Kefir.  A word of advice on the cereal, though... you can taste the acid medium, so it's best to use plain kefir or something more bland than lemon juice or apple cider vinegar if that's going to bother you.  I even made my own whey...seriously easy.  I'll post more later if any of you all are interested.

Here's a good soaked tortilla recipe

Here's another

Here's a good resource for recipes, many of which are soaked, from my newest favorite blog.

And another good resource for recipes, many soaked, from my other newest favorite blog.

Here's a soaked whole grain bread

And here's the same soaked whole grain bread (minus the millet) adapted for bread machine.

Soaked homemade granola

Soaked granola bars

Happy soaking!

Monday, June 13, 2011

Barley and Veggie Soup

This comes from my cousin, Jamie's friend.  I wanted to post it so I could find it again easily.  This one is a keeper!  Jamie served it to me for lunch the other day and I loved it, so I had to make it again for dinner tonight.  Both Jamie and I did not add the milk at the end and it was still deelish.  

Barley & Veggie Soup

2 TBSP butter
1 large onion
½ Cup oat flour
4 Cup chicken stock
3 cloves garlic, minced
4-6 carrots, diced
½ large cauliflower, diced
1 head broccoli, diced
1 Cup water
1 Cup barley (soaked overnight)
1 tsp  basil
1 tsp oregano
1 tsp salt
½ tsp pepper
½ cup milk

Saute butter & onion in pan. Add flour and stir until it browns up. Slowly add 2 cups chicken stock while stirring. Allow to thicken before adding additional cups of stock. Add remaining vegetables, soaked barley, & spices. Simmer on low for 15-40 minutes (gets better with time). Stir in ½ cup milk about 10 minutes before you are ready to serve.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Chick-en Nuggets

As in chickpea Chick-en Nuggets!  We got this recipe from Super Healthy Kids and it was a huge hit!  Cory actually loved them, and Jocelyn literally ate every single thing on her plate which doesn't happen very often.

1 Can Chick-peas (Garbanzo Beans)
1⁄2 onion 
1 clove garlic 
  Parsley
1 tsp cumin 
1 tsp salt 
Dash pepper 
  1 egg
1 TBL olive oil 
1 tsp lemon juice 
1 cup bread crumbs

Mash Beans
Use food processor for onion, garlic and parsley
Mix beans with onion mixture with a spoon
Mix seasonings, egg, oil, and lemon juice. Add to bean mixture.
Slowly fold in bread crumbs and combined until dough is easy to handle.
Use small layer of olive oil in a pan. Shape dough into chicken nuggets and cook on pan until browned. Cool and let dry on paper towel.

©2011 Super Healthy Kids. Amy Roskelley provides resources on feeding your family healthy food. Visit Super Healthy Kidsfor more ideas 

I thought it would be fun to do a healthier version of a fast food meal for our Friday night meal, so I served them up with some oven fries.  I know, I know, not exactly well rounded... not a green veggie in sight...but it was a special occasion kind of meal.  Besides the fact that my pan was too hot and I practically burned the outsides, we all were fans.  They are quite tasty and it doesn't hurt that they actually look like chicken nuggets too. And I used my blendtec to make the bread crumbs from homemade bread, so there was no HFCS or preservatives.  (why do store bought bread crumbs need that junk?)

And speaking of beans...I've been putting up beans in the freezer like a maniac.  I'm embarrassed to admit that up until January, I literally had no idea what to do with a dry bean.  We never, ever ate beans growing up (except a can of refried beans here and there for tacos), let alone having them start from a bag of dry beans.  A little research and a few slow cookers later, my freezer is full of black and pinto beans and chickpeas in one-can-sized quantities. Just a little step towards being more frugal and eating more healthy.

Oh, and my friend showed me this site that I am going to try some things from this week.  The subtitle is: where healthy tastes could you not like a site like that?!

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Banana Chocolate Muffins

I made the healthy version of these muffins this week and they were delicious!  They were so delicious, we actually had them for dessert.  I made mine with the stuff in parentheses except I did raw sugar instead of the cane juice. The recipe is from Talkin' Chow, Playin' House.  Click here to find the original post.  Here is the recipe:

1 1/2 cups all purpose flour (whole wheat flour)
1 cup granulated sugar (evaporated cane juice)
1/4 cup cocoa powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
3 medium ripe bananas
1/3 cup vegetable oil (grape seed oil)
1 egg
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
(1-2 tablespoons flaxseed)

In a large bowl, combine the first 6 ingredients.  In a small bowl, combine bananas, oil and egg.  Stir the wet mixture into the dry ingredients in the large bowl just until combined.  Fold in the chocolate chips.  Fill greased or paper lined muffin cups 3/4 full.  Bake at 350 for 20-25 minutes!  Recipe makes about 1-2 dozen.

100% whole wheat bread machine bread

I have a favorite bread recipe that I usually make, but it's only half whole wheat, so I just did a google search for a fully whole wheat bread recipe for my bread maker this week.  It is nothing super fancy, but is a good staple and it doesn't taste cardboard-y.  It is good for sandwiches and the like.  The recipe is from and is as follows:

  1. 2 Instructions for my machine are: Add all ingredients in the order listed. (I combine the water and powdered milk and heat them in microwave on high for 30 seconds before putting in baking pan and then add the remaining ingredients.).
  2. 3 Insert the baking pan into the oven chamber and lock the pan.
  3. 4 Select Whole Wheat setting and 2 pound loaf.
  4. 5 Press start.

If you have a machine that makes something different than a 2 pound loaf, go to the original recipe here and you can put in whatever loaf size you want and it will give you the correct amount of each ingredient to add.

Friday, June 3, 2011


Hi everyone...

I don't ever know if you want me to send out emails for this information or just post them on the blog, but here it is one way or the other, and let me know if you'd rather I just send emails.  And sorry this is long.  Feel free to ignore if you prefer, I just wanted to share some of the research I've been doing in case it helps any of you.

I just had a really in depth conversation with the specialist that has been helping my family to get well (and doing a great job at it) about some important issues and I thought you might be interested.  We asked him how we can avoid getting these same health problems in the future, since we are working so hard at detoxing our bodies and getting us well.  We don't want to keep having to go back every month, and keep getting rid of this junk if we can avoid getting it in the first place.  It's cheaper and so much better on our bodies.  His answer, in short, "It depends on what you eat."

So I probed.  If we're paying him, I want to know how I can take our health into our own hands and not have to pay him so much, although I do love him and what he's done for us.  I told him what we've been trying to do... nothing artificial, cutting out most dairy and meat and replacing it with fresh fruits and vegetables, trying to make everything from scratch, incorporating lots of healthy grains, growing our own food with no pesticides, etc. etc.  What more can we do?

Remember the section in Food, Inc. on Monsanto?  The soybean giant that has control over most of the soybeans grown, which are all GMO (Genetically Modified Organisms).  I was a little disturbed about that section of the movie, and I know I've shared with you before that that is why we don't do soy milk.  Well, apparently they have bought up a bunch of other companies and now almost all grains that are available in regular stores are GMO. Grrrr!!!

Why is this a problem?  For a few reasons, but this page explains a lot if you are interested.  This is another page that explains why you should avoid GMO foods.  Here's some tips to help you avoid GMO's.  There's a ton of reading material out there on the internet and many have written books.  It's not hard to find, which is why I'm shocked that I didn't know all this before. I mean, I knew GMO's were bad for you, but I had no idea how prevalent they are.  These are all from the same site,  but seriously, there's a ton out there. There are many countries that won't allow any GMO foods and there are whole non-GMO zones in Europe, which is why some people go on vacation to Europe and all of a sudden start feeling better.  Here's an interesting article about non-GMO countries.

I was so proud of that 8 grain cereal that we looove at our house and now I am just frustrated and feel like there's nothing safe to eat anywhere you go.  I know there is, it's just sad that it takes such constant vigilance (Thanks Alaster Moody...) just to keep your family healthy.  And don't worry, I haven't gone insane and I don't take my own food with us everywhere we go, but sometimes I feel like that's the only way to keep it out!  The specialist we've been working with said the same thing...he pretty much takes his own food with him everywhere he goes.  He put Cory on a one month cleanse, and it's going to be rough to get all that junk out right now, but we will do our best.

Oh, and our garden?  Unless you specifically by non GMO seeds, they are GMO.  Double Grrr!!!  We do have some heirloom tomatoes that the seeds date back to pre-GMO days so those are good.  We have already found some good sources (like this one) for non GMO seeds for next year, but until then...

Obviously, this should all be taken with common sense.  Most people, including us, can't afford to get rid of all of that junk completely.  And obviously eating food grown in your own garden is better than getting it at the grocery store, even if the seeds are GMO.  At least it's fresh and you can eat it so quickly after harvesting that most of the nutrients are still there.  A good tip is that if you can't smell it (it doesn't have much fragrance), it isn't very nutrient dense.  Think, plasticky tomatoes at the grocery store.  And obviously it's still better to eat the multi-grain hot cereal for breakfast than Fruit Loops.  I hope this hasn't come out as alarmist, but I am concerned about it because I've seen first hand what happened when you let this stuff build up in your body for years and years.  This is just taking healthy eating to the next level.

I still have a lot of research to do, but from what I've read, you're mostly safe if you buy organic.  Honeyville farms are non-GMO for the most part.  Here's a link to their supposed GMO policy.  It's not official, but it's consistent with a lot of other things I've read about their company-take it for what it's worth.  Also, Bob's Red Mill's website states that, "All of our products come from identity preserved seeds. This means the seed planted in the ground is non-GMO. We simply can't guarantee against cross pollination due to natural occurrences such as wind drift, so we do not label our products GMO-free."

In good news, though, both Cory and Jocelyn have moved up to the next level of detoxing (finally!) which we attribute to doing the alkaline water.  The last time we saw the doctor, there was still some bacteria that was hanging on and we couldn't move forward until we got it out.  We started drinking the alkaline water the next day and we've been on it a month.  We saw him again this week and all that stuff we've been trying to get out for 6 months is gone and we are moving forward!  Yay!!  If any of you have access to it, we obviously are big fans, although we haven't had to fork out the money for the machine which makes it easier.

I also had a good conversation with him about vaccinating kids, but that's for another day.