Thursday, December 15, 2011

I'm Back

After a hard couple of months away due to illness, I'm back. I'll be adding new recipes soon. Over the next few days, I want to revamp the blog, and then I'll be creating new and exciting  new recipes to share.

In the meantime please bear with me as I catch up.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Smoothies, Smoothies, Smoothies...YUM!

Smoothies make eating breakfast so easy. With a blender and less than 2 minutes of your time, you can create a wide variety of healthy alternatives to skipping a meal. Here are a few recipes I use often to make some wonderful smoothies that are varied and nutritional. Each recipe is for a single serving. You can adjust recipes to make larger batches if you wish.

Before the recipes, though, I wanted to talk to you about what to do with smoothies. These tips will ensure a great experience for you as you try out your hand at creating the perfect on the go breakfast.

Smoothies should not be made ahead of time. Fresh fruit does tend to discolor and standing can cause a smoothie to separate, leaving you with a less than appetizing drink.
If you use frozen fruits, your smoothies will have a creamier texture and you will not need to add ice.

The thickness of your smoothie can be adjusted. If you find your blend too thin, toss in a little more fruit or ice. If it's too thick, add a little bit of your base liquids.

Flavor combinations are endless! Don't be afraid to try out different flavors or to substitute ingredients for what you have on hand.

If you have allergies like I do, don't assume a store bought smoothie is free of allergens.

If you are making smoothies and they are the primary reason to purchase a blender, go with a less complicated model. All your blender really has to do is crush ice and blend, not pulverize, liquefy, or otherwise pulse. Oster makes great blenders for this purpose for under $25. Stick blenders also do well with smoothies (as long as you thaw everything first) and run around $15.

Spices, used sparingly, can bring your smoothie to life! Just like in baking or other methods of food preparation, spices can enhance the flavors you are blending to create a wonderful taste experience.

SIZE MATTERS! It is very easy to create a smoothie that is very high in calories very, very quickly. To help maintain weight while ensuring nutrition, you should keep in mind that a serving size for a smoothing is 8 oz. I use the cup I am making the smoothie in to measure ingredients so that my smoothies are not over sized and therefore over loaded with calories.The recipes I have included in this post are between 6 and 8 oz.

Variety is key. You will gain more nutrition by alternating ingredients and using seasonal produce.

Vegetables can be incorporated into your smoothies for even more nutrition. Just make sure the fruits and vegetables you pair up are complementary to each other in flavor and texture.

Use Organic ingredients for smoothies whenever possible. The taste difference and better nutrition is well worth the few pennies extra at the grocery checkout line. 

Make it pretty. Appetite and attitude about foods are directly related to your eyes. If it looks good, it IS good. Take a couple of seconds each morning to make your smoothie visually appealing.

AND NOW....on to the recipes!

Banana Medly
Serving Size: 8 oz.
Calories: 215

1/2 cup sliced bananas (Frozen will be creamier, but fresh works well, too)
1/4 cup chopped peaches
1/4 cup sliced strawberries
1 banana slice
1 whole strawberry
1/2 teaspoon honey
Dash of cinnamon
Dash of nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon flax seed
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/2 cup almond milk

In blender, build the base for your smoothie. Blend together almond milk, spices, flax seed, and vanilla. Add fruit and blend well. Add honey, pulsing your blender to mix evenly. Pour smoothie into cup. Slice half way through whole strawberry and the banana slice. Slip these onto the rim of your cup and enjoy.

Blueberry Heaven
Serving Size: 8 oz.
Calories: 380

1/4 cup sliced banana
1/2 cup blueberries
1/2 teaspoon flax seeds
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon honey
1/2 cup coconut milk

In blender, blend coconut milk, vanilla, and flax seeds. Add fruit. Blend until smooth. Add honey. Pulse to mix evenly. Sprinkle a few extra berries on top for garnish if you like.

Tangerine Delight
Serving Size: 8 oz.

2 tangerines, peeled with pulp removed
1/4 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
1/2 teaspoon flax seeds
3/4 cup almond milk

Blend almond milk, flax seeds, and pumpkin pie spice together. Add tangerines and blend until smooth. Garnish with a slice of tangerine if you wish.

Banana Peanut Butter
Serving size: 8 oz
Calories: 439

1 banana sliced
2 tablespoons organic peanut butter
1/2 teaspoon honey
1/2 teaspoon flax seeds
1/2 cup almond milk

Blend almond milk, flax seeds and peanut butter together. Add banana and blend well. Add honey and pulse to mix. Garnish with a banana slice if you wish.

Search for blenders for smoothies

Ok, Back on Track

Well, lately it's been impossible to post in this blog. However, now that I am officially cancer free, I suddenly have a lot more time on my hands and will be posting on a regular basis. I simply wanted to say thank you for those who patiently waited while I took care of me.

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Coconut Quick Bread

I started experimenting with a more Hawaiian tasting bread to use for snacks or breakfast. As allergy free flours do not react the same as wheat, it took a little bit of work to find the right mix of ingredients. Each experimental loaf was good, but didn't quite have the depth I was looking for. However, the third time really is the charm. Here's a wonderful, full flavor bread that is moist, bold, mild, and everything in between. The personality of this bread is amazing. Even I was impressed with the results--and I'm hard to impress.

Coconut Quick Bread

2 1/4 cups GF all purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon coconut oil
1 teaspoon almond oil
1/2 teaspoon sesame oil
1/2 cup butter, softened
3/4 cup evaporated cane juice
2 tablespoons molasses
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 teaspoon black walnut extract
2 eggs
3/4 cup coconut milk
1 1/2 cup shredded coconut.

In a medium bowl, mix together GF flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Stir in shredded coconut. Set aside

In a large mixing bowl, beat butter, coconut oil, and evaporated cane juice until fluffy. Add eggs and beat until well mixed. Stir in almond oil, molasses, vanilla extract, and walnut extract.Add coconut milk until well mixed.

Add the GF flour mixture to the liquid mixture. Stir until well mixed.

Use a small amount of almond oil to grease a loaf pan. Sprinkle with flour and coat pan. Pour batter into loaf pan and bake in a 375 F oven for about 45 minutes or until wooden toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean. Allow baked loaf to cool in pan for 20 minutes. Turn out onto a flat surface and invert onto plate. Allow to completely cool before slicing.

Note: If your oven tends to dry out baked goods, you can set a pan of water in the oven while baking. This will allow you to bake in a moist heat and yield softer baked goods.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Steak Pita Tostados

1 large steak
Mesquite seasoning (can be purchased in the spice aisle.)
1 onion
1 clove garlic
1 red bell pepper
1 yellow bell pepper
2 tablespoons olive oil

2 cups shredded lettuce

1 cup fresh salsa (see blog post here for recipe.)

Tortillas (see blog post here for recipe.)

Cut onion and bell peppers into julienne strips. Cut steak into thin strips. Mince garlic. In a skillet, warm olive oil. Add steak, garlic  and vegetables. Sprinkle with Mesquite seasoning to taste. Cook on medium heat, stirring frequently, until vegetables are tender/crisp and meat is done.

On a plate, place a tortilla. Spoon meat mixture on top of tortilla. Add shredded lettuce. Top with Fresh salsa. Serve. Makes 6 servings. 

Friday, June 25, 2010


Living in Texas, having tortillas is almost a requirement. We eat them in just about everything, from soups to tacos. Having celiac disease says tortillas are out of the question. As I am also stubborn, I have developed my own tortilla that uses my allergen free flours to produce a tortilla I can sink my teeth into.


2  1/2 cups gluten free flour mix of your choice
2 tablespoons butter, melted
1/2 teaspoon coconut oil
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon sea salt, finely ground
3/4 cup lukewarm goat's milk

One additional tablespoon butter for cooking tortillas

In a large bowl, mix all ingredients together. This will result in a slightly sticky dough. Turn out on a well floured surface and need for 5 minutes. Separate into 10 balls. Let dough rest for about 45 minutes. Roll out each ball as thin as possible. (almost paper thin). Place one rolled tortilla at a time in a lightly buttered skillet set to medium heat. Turn tortilla when it begins to bubble. Remove from heat when tortilla is lightly browned on both sides.

Note: Tortillas cook quickly. Be careful not to over cook. Also, these freeze well. make a large batch to have on hand.

Note: Rolling thicker tortillas results in a wonderful pita type flat bread that is wonderful for sandwiches of all types. I purposely made these for steak gyros with superb results in flavor and texture. 

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Seared Flounder with Stuffed Mushrooms

I used to love making stuffed mushrooms. However, the way I used to make them wouldn't fit what I can eat now. So, I did a little work on the recipe and created a great stuffed mushroom with seared flounder that works great as a filling summertime meal.

Stuffed Mushrooms (serves 2)

4 large baby portebella mushrooms
3 tablespoons butter
1/4 cup diced tomatoes
1/2 cup soft goat's cheese
dash lemon juice

Wash mushrooms and scoop out stems. Set stems aside on a cutting board. Melt butter in a skillet on medium heat. Saute mushroom caps in the butter.  While mushrooms are sauteing, chop mushroom stems. In a bowl, mix soft goat's cheese, tomatoes, and stems. Add lemon juice. When mushrooms are just tender but firm, remove from skillet. Fill each cap with the cheese mixture equally. Place in broiler for 5 minutes. Serve immediately.

Seared Flounder (serves 1)

1 flounder fillet (thawed)
Lemon Pepper
Lemon wedge
Sea Salt
2 tablespoons olive oil

In a skillet, heat the olive oil on medium heat. Place fillet in skillet. Add lemon pepper and sea salt to taste. Place heavy metal spatula over the fish. Turn fillet after about 3 minutes. Replace heavy metal spatula. Remove from pan after about 3 minutes. Serve with lemon wedge.