Buckwheat Chia Bread

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Is there ever a day where I’m not trying to dream up a delicious bread recipe that agrees with my body? The answer to that would be, NO. There’s always a solution, it’s just a matter of figuring out how to create it!  I’m not the person that has to have bread every day, but I definitely enjoy it and would like to have something on hand that I can grab when I get the craving. It also has to be healthy, full of nutrients, and without any adverse side effects.

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Much of the breads people consume aren’t made from organic ingredients and are just empty calories packed with chemicals. Modern yeast and the way it’s being commercially used isn’t doing our guts any favors either.  It is now super fast acting and grows in minutes thanks to the addition of additives instead of being slowly risen for hours and even days like it used to be when our great grandparents made bread. It may taste good, but by the time it begins digesting, it’s causing gut issues and inflammation that last long after that initial indulgence.

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This  Buckwheat Chia bread is yeast free, egg free, gluten free, grain free (buckwheat is not a grain!), dairy free, organic, packed with fiber, protein, manganese, calcium, selenium, magnesium, phosphorus, niacin, folate, B6, zinc, omega-3, beta carotene, and is fantastic for the gut. You can even make it completely vegan by exchanging the raw honey for maple syrup. It has a lovely little crunch from the pumpkin and chia seeds and the flavor is fantastic! I ate it plain as a snack yesterday and this morning I made an open faced sandwich for breakfast by toasting it, spreading it with a homemade thick coconut kefir, and layered it with english cucumber, poached chicken, fresh parsley, oregano, and a pinch of sea salt. Delicious! (You can go to my Instagram to see the photo.)

Buckwheat Chia Bread

1 1/4 Cups of Organic Raw Hulled Buckwheat Groats

1/4 Cup of Organic Chia Seeds

3 Tablespoons of Organic Coconut Flour

1 teaspoon of Double Acting Baking Powder

3/4 teaspoon of Celtic Sea Salt

2 Tablespoons of Organic Psyllium Husk Powder

1 1/2 Cups of Filtered Water

1/4 Cup of Organic Extra Virgin Olive Oil

2 Tablespoons of Local Raw Honey

1/2 Cup of Filtered Water

1/4 Cup of Organic Raw Pumpkin Seeds

1 1/2 teaspoons of Organic Chia Seeds

Pinch of Celtic Sea Salt

*Preheat oven to 325 degrees (See note at bottom of instructions) and prepare an 8 1/2 x 4 1/2 (inside measurement) pan with non stick spray or oil and line with a piece of parchment that covers the bottom and goes up the two longest sides with an overlap to lift out the bread.

  1.  Process the groats and chia in a food processor until you get a flour consistency, about 5-10 minutes. There will be visible chia seeds and it will feel a bit grainy.
  2. Add the coconut flour, baking powder, 3/4 tsp of sea salt, and process for 1 minute.
  3. Using the 1 1/2 Cups of water, whisk in the psyllium husk powder and let it sit for a minute or so until gelatinous. Pour into a medium bowl.
  4. Add the extra virgin olive oil and the raw honey and whisk to combine. Add the remaining 1/2 Cup of water and whisk to combine.
  5. Add the flour mixture and whisk to combine. Pour into the prepared pan and spread out very lightly if necessary.
  6. Sprinkle with the pumpkin seeds, the 1 1/ 2 teaspoons of chia seeds, and the pinch of salt.
  7. Bake for 48-50 minutes. Cool for 10 minutes before removing from pan onto a cooling rack. Cool Completely before slicing.

NOTE** I use convection for all of my baking and cooking. If you have a conventional oven you can either raise the temperature to 350 degrees and keep an eye on the baking time, or you can keep it at 325 degrees and it may take as much as 10-15 minutes more baking time. Keep an eye on it!

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Pear & Oat Cookies

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Every now and then I must have an oatmeal cookie. This recipe with the pear was purely experimental because (a) I was craving oatmeal and (b) I had a pear that was perfectly ripe and ready to be eaten. Sometimes it’s just as easy as that to come up with a recipe. Lucky for me, these turned out on the first try (by the way, that doesn’t happen often).

Since I’m the only taste tester home today and my husband doesn’t care for pears anyway, you’ll just have to trust me that these are absolutely fabulous as a snack or a breakfast cookie with a lovely cup of tea or coffee.

Pears and oats were meant to be together!

Pear & Oat Cookies

*Makes 14 Cookies

1 Cup of Cassava Flour

3 Tablespoons of Coconut Flour

1 1/2 Cups of Gluten Free Old Fashioned Rolled Oats

1 teaspoon of Double Acting Baking Powder

1/2 Cup of Coconut Sugar

1/4 teaspoon of Sea Salt

1/2 Cup of Dairy Free Soy Free Butter

2 Egg Whites

1 teaspoon of Pure Vanilla Extract

1 teaspoon of Pure Almond Extract 

1 Pear Cubed (1 1/4 Cup)

1/2 Cup of Full Fat Coconut Milk

Preheat oven to 350 degrees (I use convection). Line two baking sheets with parchment and set aside.

Whisk dry ingredients. Work butter in lightly with fingers or cut in with knives (like you would for a crumble).

Add the egg whites, vanilla extract, almond extract, pears , and coconut milk. Fold in and continue folding until the dough comes together and the wet ingredients are distributed evenly.

Place 7 dollops of dough evenly on each sheet and bake for 15 minutes (may take a little longer if not using convection) until edges are crispy and lightly browned. Don’t overcook or the cookies will dry out. 

Apple & Cinnamon Puff Pancake

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This is an incredibly easy, super fast, delicious breakfast! From start to finish we were sitting down and eating within 30 minutes. It’s also very versatile. You could add berries to the top of the batter before cooking, or peaches to the bottom like I did with the apples, add different spices, serve it plain with butter and syrup, add chocolate chips, nuts, coconut, whatever your heart desires.

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Apple Cinnamon Puff Pancake

*Gluten Free *Dairy Free

Makes 6 Servings & Can Easily Be Doubled & Baked in Two Pie Dishes

3/4 Cup of  Dairy Free Milk (I used Malk Almond Milk)

3 Eggs

3/4 Cup of Mama’s All Purpose Almond Flour Blend

1/4 teaspoon of Xanthan Gum

2 Tablespoons of Coconut Sugar

1 teaspoon of Pure Vanilla Extract

2 teaspoons of Ceylon Cinnamon

1 Medium Honey Crisp Apple

3 Tablespoons of Dairy Free Butter

Powder Sugar & Fresh Lemon Wedges to serve

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees (for convection) or 400 degrees (for standard). Place the 3 Tablespoons of butter in a 9 inch pie plate and melt in the oven until sizzling and bubbly. While the butter is melting, core and cut the apple into thin slices.

Remove the pie plate from the oven and arrange the apples in a circle in a single layer around the bottom of the pan. (Overlapping won’t hurt.) Sprinkle 1 Tablespoon of the coconut sugar over the apples and follow with 1 teaspoon of the cinnamon.

Return the pie plate to the oven and bake the apple mixture for 8-10 minutes. While the apple mixture is baking – In your blender, blend the milk, eggs, flour, xanthan gum, remaining cinnamon and coconut sugar, and vanilla until completely combined and smooth.

Remove the apples from the oven and pour the batter over the apples. Return to the oven and bake for 22 minutes.

Slice and serve with powdered sugar and fresh lemon wedges for squeezing.

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Maple & Clementine Doughnuts

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Raise your hand if you like doughnuts. I’m not sure I’ve ever met anyone who doesn’t. The only problem is that for those of us trying to avoid additives, allergens, and just try to keep the abuse to our gut to a minimum…doughnuts in the outside world, aren’t always a good fit.

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If I’m going to indulge a little, I like to have control over my own ingredients. They aren’t perfectly healthy (someone figure out how to make a perfectly healthy doughnut with an avocado, and I’m there) but they are healthi-ER and are made with whole ingredients that everyone can recognize and pronounce.

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I’d been staring at a few clementines in the fridge for a week. They needed to be eaten but why eat them plain when you can try to marry them with something amazing (like maple sugar) and eat them in the form of a doughnut?

I mean, live a little, will you?

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If you haven’t tried maple sugar…oh my goodness, you are missing out. It’s purely made from maple syrup and it has an intense maple flavor. I’ve used it in several cookie recipes as well as candied nuts and it never disappoints. I wasn’t sure if clementine and maple were a good match but they turned out to be the perfect match. 

Someday when I can eat oatmeal again, I’m going to put maple sugar all over it and I’m convinced trumpets will sound and angels will sing.

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I think this recipe could end up being very versatile. We’ll see if I can come up with some other interesting flavors in the future…and of course the staple – chocolate with chocolate frosting.

See you soon! xo

Maple & Clementine Doughnuts

*Grain Free *Dairy Free

*Makes 14 doughnuts

For The Doughnuts:

1 Cup of Full Fat Coconut Milk

1 teaspoon of Apple Cider Vinegar

1/2 Cup of Maple Sugar

1/4 Cup of Coconut Sugar

1/2 Cup of Dairy Free Butter

2 Eggs, separated

2 teaspoons of Clementine Juice

2 teaspoons of Clementine Zest

1/2 teaspoon of Pure Orange Extract

1 Cup of Cassava Flour

1/2 Cup of Chestnut Flour

1 teaspoon of Double Acting Baking Powder

3/4 teaspoon of Baking Soda

1/2 teaspoon of Sea Salt

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and spray two non stick doughnut pans with oil.

Measure the coconut milk and add the apple cider vinegar. Stir and set aside. Cream the sugars and butter in a mixer until fluffy. Add the clementine juice, zest, and extract and mix to combine.

In a medium bowl, whisk the flours, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.

Separate the eggs (I put the yolks in the coconut milk mixture and beat with a fork), and beat the egg whites to stiff peak. Set aside.

Add the coconut milk mixture to the sugar and butter mixture and mix until combined. Add the flour mixture and mix on slow until combined, scraping down sides once or twice. Remove the bowl and fold in the egg whites.

With a small spoon, carefully fill the doughnut pan holes. Bake for 13 minutes. Cool in pan for 5 minutes, then flip the doughnuts (carefully) out onto a cooling rack. Cool completely before frosting.

For the Maple Orange Frosting:

2/3 Cup of Maple Sugar, blended to make powdered maple sugar (you could also just use regular powdered sugar but you will not have the maple flavor)

1/3 Cup of Dairy Free Butter

2 teaspoons of Pure Orange Extract

Pinch of Sea Salt

About 2 teaspoons of Coconut Milk

Whiz up the sugar in your blender and pour into a bowl. Add the butter and salt and mash with a fork until the mixture is smooth, add the extract, and continue mixing. Slowly add in a little bit of coconut milk at a time until you have a medium thick dipping/spreading consistency. You can either dip each doughnut (carefully, they are a bit fragile), or spoon frosting on each doughnut and spread it. **Next time, I think I would go for a bit thicker of a frosting and just spread it on each doughnut. That way it will set up faster and be easier to handle when eating with your hands.

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Beef & Veggie Burritos

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I really like to have a few easy meals in my fridge and freezer for lunches and those nights I don’t feel like cooking a meal with a lot of steps and ingredients. I have found that homemade soups, sauces, tortillas, and now burritos are really helpful to have on hand.

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I made these burritos with beef and veggies but the options are endless! You could go a completely traditional Mexican route, you could make breakfast burritos, make them vegan, use chicken or pork, shredded or diced, you could go completely veggie, Asian, Caribbean, you name it – as far as your imagination and skills will take you.

If you’re short on time, you can also make the tortillas a day ahead or a few days ahead so you can split up the prep time although – these come together really quickly!

 

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Speaking of the tortillas, that recipe also has endless options. You can add all kinds of herbs for flavor. You can also replace the spinach puree with pureed sweet potato, carrots, kale, collards… or beets or sun dried tomatoes, roasted garlic, a combination of different herbs and veggies, or anything your creative mind comes up with.

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*Dairy Free   *Grain Free   *Egg Free

Beef & Veggie Burritos 

*Makes 10 small/medium burritos

Double Batch of My Grain Free Spinach Tortillas

1 lb of Ground Beef

1 Cup of Chopped Red Onion

3 Cloves of Minced Garlic

1 Tablespoon of Oregano

1/4 teaspoon of Sea Salt

Few Grinds of Pepper

…………………………

2 Cups of Chopped Red Cabbage

3/4 Cup of Chopped Broccoli Florets

1/4 Cup of Diced Celery

1/2 Cup of Diced Carrot

3/4 Cup of Diced Red Bell Pepper

1 3/4 Cups of Diced Cremini Mushrooms

2 Cups of Chopped (small) Baby Kale

3 Cloves of Minced Garlic

1 Tablespoon of Minced Fresh Rosemary

1 Tablespoon of Minced Fresh Thyme

1/4 teaspoon of Sea Salt

Few Grinds of Pepper

1 Tablespoon of Avocado Oil

1/4 Cup of Beef Broth

2 Cups of Daiya Cheddar Style Cheese (I like to buy the block and grate it, I think it tastes better and melts better)

…………………………………………………………………………………..

Make tortillas and cool.

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Saute the first block of ingredients and set aside. Then, saute the cabbage, broccoli, celery, carrots, bell pepper, mushrooms, kale, garlic, and herbs in the 1 Tablespoon of avocado oil. Season with salt and pepper, add the first block of sauteed ingredients and stir together. Add the 1/4 cup of beef broth and stir. (I use grass fed lower fat ground beef…if you are using a high fat ground beef, you may not need to add the beef broth for moisture).

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**If you are making these to eat immediately, then you’ll want to quick heat your tortillas in a frying pan as you assemble the burritos. I just heat a frying pan on medium high and heat the tortillas for a minute or so on each side. Then, add the filling and top with cheese, fold it up and serve. You can use any type of pan to heat and crisp the tortilla and do not need oil.

**If you’re meal prepping these for the freezer, then you’ll want to cool the ingredients completely before assembling. Then, assemble one by one and wrap each in a piece of parchment, layering the burritos in a freezer bag.

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To reheat you can either wrap them in foil for a softer burrito or leave them naked for a bit of a crunch on the outside. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees and bake for about 30-35 minutes turning once.

You will have a few plain tortillas left over. They store well in the fridge for a few days or for a month in the freezer. If freezing, place a piece of parchment between each tortilla and stack. Double bag and freeze.

 

 

 

Holiday Ideas ~ My Favorite Kitchen Tools

I have always had a deep love for kitchen time and everything that goes along with it. Even washing dishes! Standing next to my mom or aunt dipping my hands into hot, sudsy water in my grandma’s kitchen (she of course didn’t have an electric dishwasher), and sitting at the kitchen island watching her cook, are some of my most relaxing and most cherished memories. The majority of my favorite family memories take place in my grandma’s house, with lots of family present and wonderful food. I wanted that same experience for my own family while our son was growing up and even now with only two of us, the kitchen is the heart of our home.

Of course, technology has come a long way since my childhood. We have an abundance of appliances and kitchen tools that make our lives easier and meal prep faster. I have a pantry and drawers full of gadgets! As I think back to my childhood, a large turkey roaster was the only “extra” fancy appliance I can remember my grandma having. She used it for roasting turkeys of course, but also for making huge batches of salty Chex mix during the holidays. Then, the “Fry Daddy & Fry Baby” hit the market, and her deep fried doughnuts were an absolute taste of heaven. Such good memories!

Below are some of my kitchen favorites. Any of them would make great gifts for your loved ones!

Multiple Blade Spiralizer $24.99

Such a simple way to make zucchini noodles and much more! It’s easy to clean and I really like that it suctions to the counter for safety.

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Zacfton Slicer & Shredder $23.99

Our son bought us this cheese grater for Christmas one year and we absolute love it! Comes with different blades for all of your needs, easy to clean, and suctions to the counter.

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Euro Cuisine Yogurt Maker $29.99

I’ve had this yogurt maker for years and it works great every time!

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KitchenAid 7 Cup Food Processor $74.99

I make pesto in mine, chop nuts, grind meat for lettuce wraps, you name it – makes life so much easier!

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Hamilton Beach Belgian Waffle Maker $42.53

We use ours at least three times a month. Perfect waffles every single time.

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Non Stick Covered Wok $55.99

Our son bought me this wok one year for Christmas and I really like how versatile it is. Also love the easy clean up!

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Lodge Dutch Oven $59.99

I think the value and quality of Lodge products is really impressive. Yes, you can buy LeCreuset if you have the budget but Lodge works just as well and comes in all kinds of beautiful colors shapes and sizes too.  I use mine regularly and have never been disappointed!

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KitchenAid Stand Mixer $189.99

I’m pretty sure everyone knows the value of the KitchenAid Mixer! It’s fabulous and has all kinds of cool attachments to meet your needs. I’ve had mine for many years and it’s still going strong. I also purchased the ice cream maker that goes with it and I love it!

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Vitamix Blender $299.95

I know that price tag is frightening, but I promise you that a Vitamix blender is worth every single penny. I can’t believe how many years we wasted money on cheap blenders that couldn’t handle the work. We make smoothies in it regularly as well as grinding groat seeds for buckwheat flour. So easy!

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Instant Pot $99.95

This is not the scary pressure cooker from your childhood! Simple to use and extremely versatile. Even though I’ve used ours many, many, times I am always amazed at what it can do and how quickly it can do it!

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Retro Electric Kettle $39.99

I am absolutely in love with this adorable retro kettle! I really dislike having a tea kettle on the stove. They get dirty and have to be moved to make room. Electric kettles have a base that plugs in so you can put it anywhere you want. The kettle releases from the base to fill and pour.

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Omega Masticating Juicer $295.00

Another kitchen appliance that is worth its weight in gold! This masticating juicer removes every possible ounce of juice from your veggies and fruits. It’s not loud and obnoxious either and is easy to clean!

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Fluted Biscuit Cutter Set of 5 $16.95

I love all of the different sizes! I use them for biscuits and cookies.

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Fat Separator $14.99

No more skimming fat off of soups, sauces, and gravies with a spoon. This makes it so simple. The fat settles at the top and you just pour it right off leaving what you want underneath.

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Ice Cream/Cookie Scoops Set of 3 $16.99

These come in handy for more things than you would think.

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Set of Three Fine Mesh Strainers $12.99

More little gadgets that I find myself using all the time!

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KitchenAid Immersion Blender $74.99

I’ve had mine for years and use it for making creamy soups and gravies and amazing fruit sauces. This one comes with all kinds of fun gadgets too!

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Potato Ricer $23.99

This tool makes the lightest, fluffiest, potatoes you will every eat! You can leave the potatoes riced or you can rice them and then whip them up for creamy mashed potatoes. You can also rice cooked carrots, beets, whatever you like!

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Digital Food Scale $18.99

Sometimes the measuring in baking needs to be exact. This food scale is easy to use and works great!

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Maple Walnut Shortbread

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National Cookie Day sneaked past me yesterday while I was out doing my Christmas shopping. Not to worry though, cookies are tasty every day!

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I haven’t had shortbread in years and this maple walnut shortbread was delicious with my cup of morning tea. It’s so simple too – you could easily whip these up on short notice as a tasty gift or when company arrives unexpectedly and you’d like something sweet and flaky to serve with hot beverages. The maple extract adds amazing flavor your guests will love!

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 Maple Walnut Shortbread

1/2 Cup of Dairy Free Butter

1/3 Cup of Powdered Sugar

1/2 teaspoon of Pure Maple Extract

1/4 teaspoon of Pure Vanilla Extract

Pinch of Sea Salt

1 1/2 Cups of Mama’s Almond Blend All Purpose Gluten Free Flour

For The Frosting:

1 1/4 Cups of Powdered Sugar

1 teaspoon of Pure Maple Extract

Pinch of Sea Salt

2 Tablespoons of Almond Milk

1/4 Cup of Finely Chopped Walnuts

Preheat oven to 325 degrees

For the shortbread, cream the butter and sugar together. Add the extracts, sea salt, and flour and blend on low just until incorporated and the dough comes together. Lightly flour a piece of parchment, pat the dough into a circle, and roll the dough into about an 8 inch circle, smoothing the edges with your fingers. Using a sharp knife, cut the dough into 16 triangles. Press a fork lightly along the edges. I also used a scalloped cookie cutter for more design on top of the cookie. (Or you can use cookie cutters and cut out shapes, or roll the dough into a rectangle and cut squares…) 

Transfer the shortbread dough WITH the parchment onto a baking sheet and bake for 30 minutes. Remove from the oven and run a sharp knife down the previous cuts. Let the shortbread cool completely, then move to a wire cooling rack for frosting. 

For the frosting, whisk the sugar, extract, sea salt, and almond milk until smooth and of drizzling consistency. Drizzle each cookie and sprinkle with walnuts one at a time (otherwise the drizzle will set and the nuts won’t stick). 

Serve with hot tea, coffee, or hot buttered rum (recipe coming soon!).

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