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Dec 11, 2013

Paleo Flourless Chocolate Cake

What do you do when you have a craving for chocolate and you want to eat as healthy as possible? You scour the internet of course hoping to come across that perfect recipe that will please your taste buds. I wanted something tasty and healthy and that would satisfy my sweet tooth and also something that I could share with my toddler.

After looking at some other recipes I wanted a healthier option. So I changed it up to my liking by adding organic ingredients, grass-fed butter, cinnamon and vanilla and organic unpasteurized honey to sweeten it.

It turned out great and I’m excited to share this recipe with you.


INGREDIENTS

6 tablespoons Grass-fed unsalted butter, plus more for pan

8 ounces bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, finely chopped

6 large eggs, separated

1/2 cup unpasteurized organic honey

1 tsp vanilla

1/4 tsp cinnamon

Cocoa Powder for dusting
Sweetened (honey) whipped cream, for serving

DIRECTIONS

Preheat the oven to 275 degrees with the rack in the center. Butter the bottom and sides of a 9-inch springform pan. Set aside.

Melt butter and chocolate in a large heatproof bowl, place glass bowl over a pot with boiling water (make sure the water does not touch the bowl) until completely melted. Let cool slightly. Add cinnamon and vanilla and whisk in remaining egg yolks.

In a large bowl, beat egg whites until soft peaks form. Gradually add in the honey, and continue beating until glossy stiff peaks form. Whisk 1/4 of the egg whites into the chocolate mixture; then gently fold in remaining egg whites.

Pour batter into the prepared pan, and smooth the top with a rubber spatula. Bake until the cake pulls away from the sides of the pan and is set in the center, 45 to 50 minutes.

Cool completely on a wire rack; remove sides of pan. Serve at room temp and top with Whipped Cream and Cocoa Powder.

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Nov 21, 2013 / 1 note

Chicken Pot Pie

My boyfriend is a major lover of Chicken Pot Pie. So I came up with this recipe for him. He and our toddler both love it and it has become a staple in our household every Fall and Winter. I swear when I get a marriage proposal this recipe will have something to do with it! ;)

Chicken Pot Pie

Ingredients

1 pack organic chicken thighs or breasts, sauteed or baked small dice
3 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 stick of butter
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
2-4 cups chicken stock , preferably homemade
2 cups yellow onions, chopped (2 onions)
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup heavy cream
2 cups medium-diced carrots or baby carrots diced
1 (10-ounce) package frozen peas (2 cups)
1 cup of diced celery
1/2 cup minced fresh parsley leaves
1  large russet  potato diced(optional)

1/4 cup white wine

Fresh Thyme about 5 sprigs

For the pastry:

3 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 cup vegetable shortening or cold grass-fed butter
1/4 pound cold unsalted butter, diced
1/2 to 2/3 cup ice water
1 egg beaten with 1 tablespoon water, for egg wash
Flaked sea salt and cracked black pepper

* If you don’t have time to make your own crust any pre-made pie crust will do. I like Trader Joe’s myself. Make sure you get the kind that’s not in a pie dish. You want to be able to roll out the dish to fit individual ramekins or one largeceramic baking dish. I pre-bake the bottom pie crust for about 10 mins before I fill it. 

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Sprinkle generously with salt and pepper. Saute chicken thighs in 2 tablespoons butter and olive oil. Set aside until cool enough to handle, then chop meat into bite size pieces.You should have about 4 cups of cubed chicken.

In a large pot or Dutch oven, melt the butter and saute the onions and veggies and thyme (except peas) over medium-low heat for 10 to 15 minutes, until soft and the onions translucent. Add the flour and cook over low heat, stirring constantly, for 2-5 minutes.Add wine and cook for about 2-3 minutes so the alcohol cooks off. Add the hot chicken stock, Simmer over low heat for 1 more minute, stirring, until thick.You can add more stock to desired thickness. Add 2 teaspoons salt, 1/2 teaspoon pepper, and heavy cream. Add the cubed chicken, peas, and parsley. Mix well. Taste and adjust seasoning if necessary.

For the pastry, mix the flour, salt, and baking powder in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a metal blade. Add the shortening and butter and mix quickly with your fingers until each piece is coated with flour. Pulse 10 times, or until the fat is the size of peas. With the motor running, add the ice water; process only enough to moisten the dough and have it just come together. Dump the dough out onto a floured board and knead quickly into a ball. Wrap the dough in plastic and allow it to rest in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.

Divide the filling equally among 4 ovenproof bowls or 1 large ceramic dish.. Divide the dough into quarters and roll each piece into an 8-inch circle. Or 1 large piece for one large chicken pot pie. Brush the outside edges of each bowl with the egg wash, then place the dough on top. Trim the circle to 1/2-inch larger than the top of the bowl. Crimp the dough to fold over the side, pressing it to make it stick. Brush the dough with egg wash and make 3 slits in the top. Sprinkle with sea salt and cracked pepper. Place on a baking sheet and bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour, or until the top is golden brown and the filling is bubbling hot.

Nov 21, 2013

Chicken Stew and Biscuits

As always I use the freshest organic ingredients that I can find. This recipe is based off of my Mom’s Chicken a Dumpling Stew I grew up eating. I changed it up a bit and added some stock instead of water for some extra flavor and nutrition and I add some Thyme and Mushrooms and biscuits instead of dumplings. But if you prefer dumplings you can do that in place of the biscuits.. I hope you will enjoy it as much as we do.

Stew Ingredients:

 2 lbs bone in chicken breast with skin whole

1/2 bag baby carrots

1 large onion, sliced or large dice

1 handful chopped parsley

1 bay leaf

Fresh Thyme Boquet Garni ( I did 4-5 sprigs )

2 cups sliced mushrooms

4 1/2 cups homemade chicken stock

2 Tablespoons of flour

salt and pepper to taste

Pat dry the chicken breasts with a paper towel and season with salt and pepper. sauté the chicken in butter or olive oil until the chicken is a nice dark golden brown. After it’s done transfer to the crock-pot. sauté your veggies you want to caramelize them before adding them to the crock-pot. This brings out the natural sugars and gives it so much flavor. When the veggies are almost done and 2 tablespoons of flour and sauté for about 5 minutes more. Make sure you’re flipping the veggie and cooking the flour. After you are done sautéing add the veggies to the crock-pot. Add the thyme Boquet Garni and bay leaf to the crock-pot. Add the chicken stock to the crock-pot (homemade is best) You want to add enough to cover the chicken. I used 4 1/2 cups.

Cook on low for 8 hours. On the last hour removed chicken and shred. Add the chicken back to the stew and discard the bones and the Boquet Garni. Add salt and pepper to taste and the mushrooms and resume cooking. While it is finishing up make the biscuit dough.Use your favorite biscuit recipe. I use this recipe from Smitten Kitchen.

When the stew is done transfer to an oven safe dish or dutch oven. Place the biscuits on top of the stew and bake at 400 degrees for about 15 minutes until biscuits are golden brown. Remove from the oven and enjoy! 

My Favorite Buttermilk Biscuits

Adapted from Dot’s Diner in Boulder via Bon Appetitt

2 1/4 cups (280 grams) all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons to 1 1/2 tablespoons (10 to 20 grams) sugar (to taste, see note above)
1 tablespoon (15 grams) baking powder
3/4 teaspoon (5 grams) table salt
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
9 tablespoons (125 grams) chilled unsalted butter, cut into small chunks
3/4 cup (175 ml) buttermilk

Preheat oven to 400 °F and cover baking sheet with parchment paper. Whisk flour, sugar, baking powder, salt and baking soda in large, wide bowl. Using fingertips or a pastry blender, work butter into dry ingredients until the mixture resembles a coarse meal, Add buttermilk and stir until large, craggy clumps form. Reach hands into bowl and knead mixture briefly until it just holds together.

To form biscuit rounds: Transfer dough to floured counter and pat out until 1/2 to 3/4-inch thick (err on the thin side if uncertain, as the tall ones will literally rise and then tip over, like mine did the day I photographed these). Using a round cutter (2 inches for regular sized biscuits, 3 inches for the monstrous ones shown above), press straight down — twisting produces less layered sides — and transfer rounds to prepared sheet, spacing two inches apart.

To drop biscuits: Drop 1/4-cup spoonfuls onto baking sheet, spacing two inches apart.

Both methods:Bake until biscuits are golden brown on top, about 12 to 15 minutes. Cool slightly, then serve warm, with butter/jam/eggs/bacon/sausage and gravy or any combination thereof. Happy weekend!

 http://smittenkitchen.com/blog/2013/03/my-favorite-buttermilk-biscuits/

 Definitions used in the recipe:

 Boquet Garni

Pronunciation: bo-KAY gar-NEE
Noun
Herbs, typically encased in a cheesecloth bag, used for flavoring a stew or soup.
Nov 12, 2013

Healthy Chocolate Chip Cookies

One thing to know about me is that I am indeed a cookie fiend. And it looks like I have passed my love of cookies onto my son. I make almost all of our baked goods from scratch and am always experimenting trying to come up with healthy delicious baked goods for my family.

Today’s experiment was a success and my family loved them and I hope yours will too.

Makes 1 dozen (12) cookies

Ingredients:

2 Cups Blanched Almond Flour

1 Cup of Einkorn AP Organic Flour (you can substitute with your flour of choice) If you want to use Coconut Flour only use 1/4 a cup.

1 large egg

1/4 Tsp Salt

1/2 Cup Unpasteruized Organic Honey

1 Tablespoon Vanilla

1/2 Tsp Cinnamon

1 Tsp Baking Powder

1/2 a stick of room temp Gras-fed Butter

1 Cup Dark Chocolate Chips

Directions:

Mix all dry ingredients and set aside. In another bowl mix butter,egg, honey and vanilla until fully combined. Add to dry ingredients, mix everything together and add Chocolate Chips.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line baking sheet with parchment paper. Scoop out dough and shape into balls. Place them down on the parchment paper and press down and flatten just a little.

Bake for 12-15 mins depending on oven, I did mine for 12 min.

Enjoy!

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Nov 9, 2013

Roasted Butternut Squash Soup

Fall is truly my favorite time of year. There is nothing like warm delicious comfort food. This is a recipe I was playing around with and it turned out delicious. I hope you enjoy it as much as my family does. 

Ingredients: 

1 medium to large Butternut Squash Roasted

1 bulb of garlic roasted

1/2 large yellow onion chopped

6 sprigs Fresh Thyme 

4 cups Veggie or Chicken Stock (homemade is best)

Salt and Pepper to taste

1 Tsp Grated Fresh Ginger

2 tablespoons gress-fed butter

Directions: 

Start by cutting the butternut squash in half and removing the seeds. Rub with olive oil, thyme and salt and pepper, Lay cut side down on baking sheet and roast at 350 degrees for an hour or an hour and half until fork tender. 

Peel away the outer layers of the garlic bulb skin, leaving the skins of the individual cloves intact. Using a knife, cut off 1/4 to a 1/2 inch of the top of cloves, exposing the individual cloves of garlic. Place in some tin foil and drizzle with olive oil and wrap up tight. Place in the oven and roast until the butternut squash is done. When the squash is done remove squash and garlic and set aside. 

Now sauté your onions and ginger and thyme in the grass-fed butter until tender. When the squash is cool add to the pot along with roasted garlic, for the garlic start with four cloves and add more to taste, add salt and pepper to taste. Add the stock and simmer for about 20 mins. Transfer to blender and puree until smooth. If the soup is still thick you can add a little more stock or water until desired consistency is reached. 

Serve and enjoy!

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Recipe by: Emma de Kruyf

Nov 6, 2013

Honeyed Apple Peanut Butter Tart

So I came up with this combo for an Instagram contest. The original recipe for the Honeyed Apple Peanut Butter Tart came from www.picky-palate.com/2010/08/30/honeyed-apple-peanut-butter-tart.  I changed it up a bit and decided to to a gluten free Almond crust and made some other changes like using grass-fed butter and adding the Honey Caramel Sauce and Dark Chocolate. I think we have a winner! 

Honeyed Apple Peanut Butter Tart

1 batch Almond Flour Crust

heaping 1/2 Cup creamy peanut butter or Almond Butter

2 Tablespoons honey, warmed plus 4 Tablespoons for drizzling

2 apples of choice, sliced thinly

Powdered sugar for dusting

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Make Almond crust and par-bake for 10 min and set aside. Warm peanut butter in a microwave safe bowl until liquid like.  Drizzle in 2 Tablespoons of honey, stir then spread evenly in tart  shell leaving 1/2 inch border around edges.  Layer apple slices neatly over top of peanut butter, coat with with warm honey and a tablespoon of melted grass-fed butter, then bake for 30-35 minutes or until pastry is lightly browned and puffed around the edges.  Let cool completely then drizzle with additional warm honey caramel sauce and dark chocolate, and if desired and powdered sugar.  

 For the Almond Crust 

 Ingredients:

1 1/2 cups almond meal or flour

1 pinch sea salt

1/4 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

3 tablespoons coconut, walnut or melted grass-fed butter

1 tablespoon maple syrup 
 
Preheat the oven to 350’F.

Place a rack in the middle of the oven.

In a mixing bowl stir together the almond flour, sea salt, baking soda and cinnamon. Break apart any lumps with your fingertips.

In a small bowl, stir together the vanilla, oil, maple syrup and water. Add the oil mix to the flour and stir the dough together with a rubber spatula until thoroughly combined.

Turn the dough onto a 9-inch pie plate or tart pan. Flatten the dough slightly with the side of the rubber spatula to begin to spread it towards the edges of the pan. Using your fingertips, continue pressing the dough, making sure to press it all the way up the sides of the pan. Make sure the dough is pressed evenly and is a uniform thickness across the bottom and edges.

Place the tart on a sheet pan and bake it for 10 minutes if you are par-baking it. For a fully baked crust, total baking time will be 20-25 minutes, or until the crust is an even golden brown. Take care not to let it get too dark.

Remove the tart shell from the oven and let it cool slightly. If you are using the crust fully baked, let it cool completely to room temperature before filling.

For the Honey Caramel Sauce:

½ cup honey

3 tablespoons grass-fed butter

3 tablespoons whipping cream

½ teaspoon salt 
 
Stir ½ cup honey and butter in a clean dry saucepan. Add honey and stir to combine. Place saucepan over medium heat, and heat stirring frequently until the honey has melted.

Let boil until it reaches 310 degrees F. Remove from heat and add whipping cream (mixture will bubble vigorously.) Stir to combine and add salt. Stir and let cool before serving. 
 

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Oct 3, 2013

Pumpkin Pancakes

It’s my favorite time of year! I just adore the Autumn and Winter months. The cold crisp air, bundling up, the changing leaves (even though I’m in So Cal) scented candles, the smell of delicious things baking in the oven, the impending Holidays and all that is Pumpkin! 

I was searching online for some Pumpkin inspiration and I came across this Pumpkin Pancake recipe from Martha Stewart. 

http://www.marthastewart.com/271839/pumpkin-pancakes

I wanted more Pumpkin and little bit more spice so here are the changes I made as well as adding the Maple Cream Cheese and Whipped Cinnamon and Pumpkin Spice Cream. 

Ingredients:

2 1/2 cups of AP Flour (Pastry Flour works too) two

2 tablespoons sugar

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon each, ground ginger, and salt

1/8 teaspoon nutmeg 1/8 tsp All Spice.

A pinch of ground cloves

2 tsp ground cinnamon

1 tablespoon Pumpkin Spice.

1 tsp Vanilla

1 cup Pumpkin Puree 

1 cup of milk ( I use Whole Milk)

1 Egg

2 Tablespoons of melted butter (I use Grass Fed)

Directions:


In a separate bowl, stir together 1 cup milk, 6 tablespoons canned pumpkin puree, 2 tablespoons melted butter, and 1 egg; fold mixture into dry ingredients. Melt some butter in a skillet over medium heat; pour in 1/4 cup batter for each pancake. Cook pancakes about 3 minutes per side; serve with butter and syrup.

Makes 8 to 10.


For the Cinnamon and Pumpkin Spice Whipped Cream:

Heavy Cream whipped to soft peaks
Dash of Cinnamon and Pumpkin Spice

Set aside. 

For the Maple Cream Cheese:

1/2 stick Cream Cheese (room temp)
Maple Syrup to taste

Use a hand-whip and whip until smooth. There might be a few bumps. If so who cares it is in between the pancakes anyways and tastes delicious. If you want to get crazy use a metal spoon after whipping and squish those suckers. Layer the cream cheese mix between pancakes and top with maple syrup and Whipped Cream. 

Also I would have added some toasted Pecans or Walnuts if I had them on hand. But alas it was not my fate this fine morning. 


Also if you really want to take this bad boys to a whole other level you could drizzle some caramel sauce on them too. 


Enjoy!

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Oct 3, 2013

Quinoa Meatball Bake

So I was going to make a baked Ziti but I didn’t have any Pasta in my cupboard! Damn, what was I going to make with all the leftover meatballs!? What did I have was some organic Quinoa. 

So I decided to give it a go. It obviously has a softer consistency then Pasta but the flavors are there. My boyfriend said it tasted like Lasagna. 

So here is what I did.

Meatballs about 2 cups chopped

Boiled quinoa 1 cup

Chopped Parsley, a small handful

Sautéed onions and garlic( 1/2 small onion and a couple cloves of garlic minced or pressed)

Your favorite Spaghetti or Marinara Sauce ( start with half a jar and add from there to desired consistency) 

Mozzarella cheese 1 cup and additional for sprinkling on top

Salt and Pepper to taste

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine all this in a bowl and pour into ceramic baking dish. Season with a little more salt and pepper top with additional cheese and baking about 30 mins until golden brown and bubbly.

Enjoy!

Sep 21, 2013

Gluten Free Berry Muffins

For the life of me I can’t remember where I got this recipe. But mad props to the original creator of this recipe.  I altered the recipe a bit and this is what I ended up with. My toddler loved them. I hope you will too. Enjoy! 


Makes 1 dozen (12) muffins

Ingredients:

2 1/2 Cups Gluten Free Organic Oats
(old fashioned not quick cooking)

1 cup plain low fat Greek Yogurt

2 Eggs

1/2 cup Baking Stevia or 1 cup sweetener of choice that measures like 1 cup of sugar 

1 1/2 tsp Baking Powder

1/2 tsp Baking Soda

1 1/2 Cups Strawberries or Berries of your choice diced, and patted dry + (optional 1/2 cup of preferred berries to place on top of muffins)

Optional 1 tsp lemon juice and half zest from half a small lemon.

Directions:

1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Line muffin pan with silicone or foil or paper liners, (or just use a silicone muffin pan.)

2. Place all of the ingredients (except the strawberries) in a blender or food processor, and blend until oats are smooth. Pour mixture in to a medium sized bowl, and stir in strawberries. Divid batter and fill up your muffin tins.
Divide the remaining 1/2 cup diced strawberries over the top of each muffin. (This step is optional, but it really makes the muffin burst with color and flavor.)

3. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean. 

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Sep 7, 2013

Mini Breakfast Frittatas

I love making these! They are so simple, healthy and delicious and are so versatile. You can pretty much add whatever you want.

This Frittata puffs up like a souffle, which makes for an impressive presentation. While this recipe is written ‘for one’ it can easily be multiplied to serve more.

 

Ingredients:

1 egg

2 Tablespoons cheese of your choice (I love Gruyere)

A general handful of fresh spinach

1/4 small onion sauteed 

1 piece of bacon

1 tablespoon milk ( I use organic whole milk)

Salt and pepper to taste.

 

 Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

 Place 7 (or 8)-ounce ramekin on rimmed baking sheet and place in oven. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

While oven is heating, in a large bowl, whisk egg, 1 tablespoon cheese, milk, salt and pepper. Set aside.

Spray a non-stick skillet with cooking spray and heat over medium heat. Add onion and bacon and cook until bacon is golden and onions are caramelized (5-6 minutes). Add spinach and cook until wilted (about 3 minutes), stirring occasionally.

Add spinach, bacon and egg mixture to egg mixture.

Remove baking sheet from oven and coat each dish with cooking spray. Immediately pour egg mixture into dish and top with remaining 1 tablespoon cheese.

Bake until Frittata is puffed up and golden brown, about 15 minutes it should be firm to the touch. Serve immediately.

Enjoy!

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