Sunday, March 30, 2014

Virgin Coconut Oil Candy- Quick and Easy Fat Bombs

This is my newest fat bomb recipe.  I needed a way to get more virgin coconut oil into my diet and my son's diet, but I am low on time.  This took no time at all! These are dairy-free, chock full of coconut, and easy to do. You could substitute carob, if you wish. You can also add a little honey, to smooth out the stevia, if you want.  But I find that honey in fat bombs spike my blood sugar, and make me crave and eat too many.  These should be satisfying.  If you are using another sweetener and feel like you can't get enough, it could be affecting your blood sugar.
PS I am not saying these are the best fat bombs ever, these are good for people used to a low-carb diet, little to no sugar, and like stevia. Makes taking spoonfuls of VCO infinitely easier! Here are my other fat bomb recipes. Also, these may help BF'ing mommies (see below).

Note For Parents (otherwise TMI Alert): I make these "candies" for my little boy to relieve constipation, too.  If you worry about the caffeine in cocoa for your child, use carob. When you use carob, use less sweetener.

Breastfeeding Mamas: These should work as grain-free lactation candies, if you stick to the recipe.  Please let me know in the comments, if you think it does.

Virgin Coconut Oil Candy- Quick and Easy Fat Bombs
makes about 15 very small ones, maybe only 5 big ones.  I used very small silicone molds

4 Tablespoons Virgin Coconut Oil
2 Tablespoons coconut cream
1 Tablespoon fair trade organic cocoa powder (or carob)
1 Tablespoon almond butter
stevia to taste- I used a few drops of liquid vanilla NuNaturals stevia
optional topping: chopped almonds and/or toasted coconut flakes

In a small saucepan on low heat, add the VCO and turn off the heat when it is only halfway melted. Add rest of ingredients (stevia to taste). Whisk with a wire whisk or "stir and smush" with a silicone spatula, until well mixed. The almond butter might take a while.  You don't want to use much heat because you want to keep the virgin properties of the VCO intact by not bringing it above 110 degrees. Using a small spoon, spoon into silicone molds, or small cupcake liners. Top with optional toppings.  Place in freezer until frozen.  You may remove to refrigerator after hardened, if you like.  I keep them in the freezer, but remove them from the molds into a container with a lid.

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Low Carb Green Tea Toasted Pumpkin or Squash Seeds


I made these yummy seeds today! Of course they are gluten free. There are about 12g of effective carbs (carbs - fiber) if you eat the whole cup. I used squash seeds.. and am making a soup with the squash. Of course, using pumpkin seeds will taste even better...

I like the taste of butter in these, but of course, if you are GFCF, use Coconut or Olive Oil

Toasted Green Tea Squash Seeds

1 cup pumpkin or squash seeds
1 teaspoon green tea, about one tea bag's worth- needs to be ground to a powder
3 Tablespoons butter (sub: coconut or olive oil)
1/2 teaspoon agave nectar
1/4 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon sea salt

Rinse seeds and then drain. Remove pulp- using your fingers works best, Spread out on a cookies sheet and dry overnight (will stick to just about anything else so be sure to use your cookie sheet).

When dry: Preheat oven to 250˚F . Melt butter with cumin, green tea, and sea salt. stir over low heat to combine flavors. Mix with seeds in a bowl and add agave nectar. Spread in a thin layer on a cookie sheet and bake for around 1 hour. Toss the seeds around every 20 minutes. When they are golden brown, they are ready. Cool. Store in airtight container, lasts about 3 months.

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Thursday, February 20, 2014

Kitchen Table Bakers Parmesan Crackers Review


As you all know, I LOVE parmesan crackers, and have my own recipe here.  However, Kitchen Table Bakers sent me these lovely parmesan crackers in the mail, as well as their Jalapeno flavor, and they were both DELICIOUS! Especially since I did not have to make them myself! :)  Try them, if you see them, theya re the perfect low-carb healthy snack and kids love them!

Saturday, February 15, 2014

Product Review: Viva Labs Organic Virgin Coconut Oil


Viva Labs sent me some of this coconut oil to review.  Although I am super super picky about coconut oil, I was really impressed with it. This coconut oil is high quality. I have been buying coconut oil for over ten years and have a lot of experience on what is GOOD virgin coconut oil. This is it. Good strong coconut aroma, very very white and solid at under 72˚F, and even certified ORGANIC and GMO-free. I highly recommend it. 

What do I use Virgin Coconut Oil (VCO for short) for? I use it to make fat bombs, for good fat intake and weight loss, I use it to make toothpaste, to dilute essential oils for every purpose, for lotion, to oil my bamboo chopping boards, to add to any dish that tastes good with an extra coconut flavor (I use expeller pressed if not)... the list is endless.  What is it good for? Everything. Coconut is a superfood, VCO is one of the greatest things to do for your body.  Do a little internet research if you are interested! Here is a nice poster from Coconutoil.com :



Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Gluten-Free Dairy-Free Oatmeal Kitchen Sink Cookies with Coconut Sugar


I love oatmeal cookies. These came out A-M-A-Z-I-N-G. Also, you all know your oats MUST be labelled "gluten-free" (and cost more than you would like to spend) or they will make your stomach hurt (if you are gluten-intolerant)!  There is some refrigerator time so better start early if you have a craving.
SUBS: I have made these with steel cut and with regular GF oats, they both come out great.  The steel cut oats make them crunchier.  You may sub a cup of sugar or sugar substitute for the stevia and coconut sugar, or use one cup of coconut sugar and omit the stevia.
To make with sugar free chocolate chips, you can use an 85% chocolate bar and chop it up like this (yes that is a link to my very first post).
So I am calling these Kitchen Sink Cookies because they have everything in them except for the kitchen sink.  Substitute all you want but I have to tell you it's FANTASTIC with macadamia nuts and cherries (I had some left over from the chocolate cookies).
Make these small!!!

GFCF Oatmeal Kitchen Sink Cookies
makes about 2 dozen small cookies. 

1 1/2 cups high quality almond flour, like Honeyville (not Bob's RM)
3/4 cup GLUTEN-FREE oats (For steel cut version, I used Arrowhead Mills )
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 cup dried cherries, or other dried fruit
1/4 cup macadamia nuts, or other nuts
1/4 cup dairy-free chocolate chips or chopped 85% chocolate bar
2 Tablespoons sugar-free coconut flakes (optional)
5 Tablespoons high quality EV Coconut Oil
1/2 cup coconut palm sugar - I like SweetTree
1/2 teaspoon NuNatural Stevia or 1/4 teaspoon - to taste of different brand (I don't like any other brand, personally)
1 pastured egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

In a medium sized bowl, blend coconut oil and sugar together until blended.  Add egg and vanilla and mix again.  In a separate bowl, mix well almond flour, oats, baking powder and baking soda, cinnamon, and salt and mix well.  Add the dry ingredients a little at a time, mixing well after each addition.  Add, nuts, fruit, coconut, and chocolate chips and mix.  Cover and refrigerate at least an hour. 
Preheat the oven to 375˚F. Place teaspoons of dough (small!) on an ungreased cookie sheet (no parchment paper needed) and bake 8 - 10 minutes until edges are brown.  Cool on cookie sheet.  Enjoy!!!

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Apple Cobbler - Waste Not Want Not

Hi to all of my friends out there... I am trying to get back to blogging! I have several posts to put up. Here is hoping I find the time to do it.  As you might be able to tell, this is just a hobby for me. (Notice my way-less-than-professional pics! LOL).
You may have noticed that my posts went from low carb to more of a paleo-with-dairy-and legumes style.  I just don't want to consume sugar alcohols anymore.  You can continue to sub it in my recipes.. that is all I ever really changed.  You will still see almond, coconut, and other high protein flour mixtures, easy recipes, and stevia.  But you will also see more usage of honey and coconut sugar. I will leave my old recipes as is though, and you may sub sugar alcohols for coconut sugar or honey.  See my substitution page.  This decision is what has kept me from blogging.  I hate to change my moniker.  So, I hope some of you will roll with the flow.  Thank you all who have stuck with me through this long year of hardly blogging! I plan some changes for the site as soon as I can manage it... to make it better looking and easier to manage.



Finished, with a bite taken out


NO WASTE: Inspired by a video about how we waste so much apple by cutting around the core, I sliced these apples from bottom to top, after peeling them.  Then, I took out seeds and stem, and cut out any other debris.  I left the star core in the slices and you couldn't tell when it was cooked. Then, I sliced each slice in four, approximately. You can see from the pictures how little was wasted! Since I only had 3 apples that got a little soft, I had little to work with. It came out to 4 cups! 

One apple sliced from the bottom up
This is all the waste from 3 peeled apples

NOTES: This apple crumble is based on this lovely recipe from Everyday Paleo. I have used so many versions of it and I am positively in love with it.  I prefer a little anise with plums or apple... a little ginger with peaches... just plain cinnamon with berries.  This recipe is my new fruit cobbler topping, and my favorite recipe lately. I used only 4 cups of apples so I used a deep small dish and had lots of topping.  This topping stretches well- thin for a bigger cobbler, thick for a smaller one. This cobbler is hard to mess up.  You can leave out most of the ingredients, add some, etc and it always seems to work. That's why there are a lot of "optional"s and notes written in.

TIP: If the words "to taste" frustrate you because you are not sure how much to use... here is a tip. Eyeball it- if you were going to eat that apple slice, how much honey or stevia or cinnamon would be enough on it? Now do that for all the apples... look at each one or group and add as much of the ingredient would taste right... the proportion. If that doesn't work for you, then try a little, mix, taste, and try again until you think it tastes right.
APPLE COBBLER

3-6 apples, peeled--> this recipe will stretch if you have more apples.  I had 3 apples = 4 cups
cinnamon to taste, about 2 tablespoons 
Anise or ginger, to taste - I used Penzey's 5 spice Chinese Powder but it only contains cinnamon, anise & ginger.
1 1/2 cups almond flour
2 Tablespoons organic grass-fed butter or expeller pressed coconut oil, melted
1 farm or pastured egg- any size egg will work. I usually use a small one.
1/2 cup chopped nuts, I used pecans
1/3 cup coconut sugar, or sub 1/3 cup sugar sub
NuNaturals Stevia, to taste, optional
1/3 cup gluten free oats, optional- You can sub more nuts
1/2 teaspoon gluten free vanilla extract, optional
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
small but deep cobbler dish, or wide but shallow
a medium sized bowl

Peel, then slice apples from bottom to top about 1/4 inch thick.  Cut out any debris like seeds and stems. Then slice each round in fours. You can stack them and cut them, to save time.
Pour apples in dish, drizzle with honey, stevia, and cinnamon to taste.  I used about 1/4 teaspoon NuNaturals stevia, 1 Tablespoon cinnamon, 1-1/2 tablespoons honey for a sweeter cobbler.  Stir together.
In a medium sized bowl, mix almond flour, melted butter or coconut oil, egg, nuts, coconut sugar, oats, sea salt, and vanilla. Add cinnamon and chinese five spice powder or ginger to taste (2:1 ratio of cinnamon:ginger/5 spice).  Mix well, then use your hands to combine it all together in a dough. Now, if using a small deep dish, you can cover it with the dough as if it were a big cookie.  If it is a wider dish, crumble the topping with your fingers over the apples so it will stretch.  It is ok if there is a little space between crumbles. Bake in pre-heated 350˚F oven for about 35 minutes or until apples are bubbly and soft and topping is browned on edges.





Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Bacon Wrapped Stuffed Jalapenos


I've posted these before, but they are pretty far down the How To Have A Gluten-Free Healthy Pampered Chef Party post, so I am re-posting.  We just made these again today. They are sooo easy and soo amazingly delicious!


Bacon Wrapped Stuffed Jalapenos

10 Jalapenos, halved, with insides and seeds removed (the white pith & seeds are the spicy part)
1 block cream cheese, soft
green onions
garlic powder
sea salt & pepper
bacon

In a bowl mix softened cream cheese, chives, and seasoning to taste. Spoon mixture into peppers and wrap with half slice bacon (or a whole if you are a bacon lover!)  and bake them at 425˚F for 20 minutes or until bacon is cooked!

Monday, December 2, 2013

Thick and Creamy Yogurt Making with my friend Melissa

Welcome Melissa, my friend who has graciously agreed to blog here about her genius yogurt making; using pastured gelatin to make it thicker, and healthier.  I hope you enjoy her post! 

Thick and Creamy Yogurt Making using Gelatin!



So, with the help of a good friend, I have finally figured out how to make yogurt of a yummy consistency (THICK and CREAMY).  After perfecting my technique I have decided to share it with the world (ok, so maybe just my facebook friends).

Here goes!
You will need:
1/2 gallon of milk (makes a 1/2 gallon of yogurt)
1 Tbs of Beef Gelatin
1 small container (8 oz) of Voskos yogurt (for starter)
Ice
Crockpot
3 quart size mason jars
Thermometer

First take out your crockpot and fill it half way with water and let it start heating up.

I threw a fit when my husband bought the fanciest crockpot available, but now I am quite happy because it has a thermometer.  I had a candy thermometer and then I washed it in the dishwasher..well you can probably imagine how that went down.  

Your goal is to get the water to 110 degrees.  Since this takes the longest I suggest getting this going first. 


How pretty is milk in glass jars?!? (I did a gallon with these pictures, but in the end I realized that I couldn't fit 5 jars in my crockpot (its the milk plus the 8 oz of yogurt), so one jar went to the chickens. (do it in half gallon size to make life easier).

Pour your milk into a large pot.


Now, this is VERY important!  Add Beef Gelatin BEFORE the milk gets hot!
Here is the one I used, I believe its from grass-fed beef.


Add 1 Tbs of gelatin to COLD milk


Whisk in quickly, it will dissolve well if the milk is still cold.  


Now you wait for your milk to get to 190 degrees F.  


While you are waiting get a nice ice bath going for your yogurt, I usually empty out the ice bin and add water until there is plenty of coldness to go around.


Once your milk has reach 190 degrees bring to ice bath and stir frequently.


Let your milk come down to 110 degrees (same temp you want the crockpot!).  This doesn't take as long as you would think.  So keep checking.  (Ignore the white soap scum on my sink! eep!) 


Once its down to 110 degrees its time to add the yogurt starter (and you are almost done!).  I use Voskos because I was told to use Voskos and frankly Im scared to try something else.  I use a 8 oz container. If you use a different starter with the same results please let me know! Voskos is not available everywhere (Whole Foods, mostly).


Take your milk out of the ice and add yogurt.


Whisk it in as much as you can, it will still be a bit lumpy but thats ok.


Now pour your milk/yogurt mixture into your jars.  Only 4 quart jars fit into my crockpot so dont do more than 4!  It will make all yogurt, no whey and no waste.


She's ready to grow me some yogurt!


Put jars into the hot crockpot (100 degrees F). Fill it as high as you can without overflowing.


Put the lid on.



Cover with foil. This is where this crockpot is cool.  I poke the thermometer through the tin foil into the water so I can check the temp throughout the day.  


And now cover with blankets!  My husband not-so-fondly refers to this as "my blanket yogurt".

Now here is the real secret to this yogurt making business. You MUST keep the yogurt between 105 and 110 degrees ALL 10 to 12 hours!  I usually check it every few hours to see where it is.  I will turn it on for 5 min (set the timer so you dont forget!) and then turn it off again.  The thicker the blankets you use and the more foil you use the less often you will have to heat it up.  I always start around 7am so that its for sure done by 7pm (almost my bedtime!).  You can do 10 hours though and if you need to add an hour or two to that it should be fine as well.  

Happy Yogurt Making!  Let me know how it turns out!


Some of my own personal cuteness to make your day brighter:


Thursday, May 23, 2013

Whole Food Kids: Orange Creamsicles

It's been very busy over here... but here's a quick summer treat for your whole food eating child or grandchild.  Very easy!  Of course, I don't eat much fruit, but I do give it to my toddler.  No juice, though!  I feel like juice is a highway to diabetes, so I used the whole fruit in this recipe.  He eats grain-free and sugar-free like I do, so this is the first time he's had any kind of popsicle. He loved it!
My toddler has not wanted to eat anything lately... won't touch yogurt or an orange for sure! But this... he loved!!  He kept saying, "Mmmmm!"

Other flavors: replace orange with peaches (frozen or fresh) and replace vanilla extract with almond extract... yummy!!!


Whole Food Orange Creamsicles for Kids
Makes 4-5 small creamsicles

If making 4; 38 calories each, 6g total carbs, 5g effective carb count.

1 organic orange, peel and seeds removed (try not to lose too much juice)
1/4 cup organic whole milk yogurt (does not need to be exact)
liquid vanilla stevia to taste
vanilla extract if not using much stevia
push-pops or ice pop molds
high power blender

Blend orange in blender until completely liquified.  Add yogurt and a few drops of vanilla stevia and taste.  Add rest of ingredients and more stevia, if needed, to taste.  Pour small amounts in each mold and freeze for 2 hours.  Serve on a hot day!!

Saturday, May 4, 2013

May the Fourth Be With You

My Husband tells me that today is Star Wars Day. (lol).  Actually today is my webpage's 4th anniversary!  Thanks for being a part of it!
There are new posts coming soon, as soon as I wrap up some singing projects, hopefully in May.
Stay tuned!
Rachel

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Easy Collard Greens & Pork Stock

Stock.  It's so good for you.  I make many kinds of stock: chicken, pork, beef, lamb, seafood.  And, I sell some locally.  I just bought a beautiful pastured pig from a local farm, and my freezer is full of delicious and good for you pork! To make my pork stock, I use pork bones, some sea salt, black peppercorns, a bay leaf, green onions or onion chives if I have some on hand from my garden, and some odds and ends of vegetable scraps- like onion skins and tops, squash rinds, things like that.  I add filtered water and keep it below the boiling point, and I leave the fat on it.  So this is what I used to make these collard greens.  They were incredible.  If you don't have your own pork stock already made, you can simmer a pot of water and pork bone until reduced, and then proceed with the recipe.  If yours has very little fat, add some stable fat such as pastured lard, or coconut oil to the recipe.  After we ate the greens, we drank the broth.  It was spicy and delicious and so many health benefits!!!  My husband said he hated collard greens but dinner took way longer than expected, so out of desperate hunger, he tried some... then finished it off. He loved it!  THIS is the way to eat collard greens!

If you are still unsure why eating pastured meat is so much better for you than conventional, go here.



Easy Collard Greens, Southern Style
Feeds 4 a a side dish or 2 as a snack

3 cups homemade pork broth with fat
   OR
4 cups of water simmered with ham hock or pork bone until a golden color (reduced in half) and a few Tablespoons of stable fat added to it - pastured lard or coconut oil

1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes, optional.  This will make it spicy.
1 bunch of organic collard greens, rinsed well and torn into smaller pieces

Pour broth into a quart pot with red pepper flakes, and add greens on top. The greens will be much higher than the broth, that is ok.  Simmer, stirring frequently, until greens reduce enough so that they are in the broth.  Keep cooking until soft.  Take pieces out and cool to try frequently.  When done, drink the broth after or dip in some cheese biscuits! Yum!


Sunday, February 24, 2013

Homemade Vanilla Extract, GMO & Grain Free

I go through a lot of vanilla extract over here.  So, I got a great deal on vanilla beans online (do a search and you will, too!) and made my own. It is so easy! Most people use vodka, but I do not. This is why.  First, I do not believe that Celiacs can drink vodka and grain based alcohols. Why? Because I never have been able to.  They have always made me sick.  The two alcohols that do not bother me are rum and tequila.  And guess what? Neither of those are grain based.  Vodka is almost always wheat based. Sure, you can buy potato vodka if you want. But, potatoes are still considered grain-like (reactions in body).   My second reason is that I am trying to completely cut out GMOs.  So I want to stay away from anything that is made from GMO (wheat, potatoes, grains) even if it is denatured and not problem causing for gluten intolerants (which I do not believe).  Of course, it is up to you.  There is very little vanilla extract in any recipe.  I used rum made in Louisiana from Louisiana cane sugar. I am reasonably sure that the cane sugar grown here is GMO free, from the research I have done.  So I made more than 1 1/2 pints of vanilla extract for less than $17.  Next time, I am going to buy organic vanilla beans! (I wish I had thought of that the first time).
In my picture you can see I forgot to cut the beans to make them less tall.  I'll have to do it later.  I'll post a picture later to show you the color change!
March 26 note: still not ready.  So, at least 6 weeks!!
UPDATE: It worked! Took 3 months!  Maybe more vanilla beans will do it faster next time? I'll have to post a new picture later.


Just made: not ready yet!




Homemade Vanilla Extract
makes one 750 ML bottle

1 bottle of cane-sugar rum made in US or Cuba
9 organic vanilla beans, mine were on the small side


Open rum bottle.  Slice the vanilla bean pods length-wise and use the knife to scrape out the inside seeds.  Scrape the seeds on the knife inside the lip of your rum bottle.  Cut vanilla beans in half to make them half as tall.  Drop them into the bottle, and try to push the seeds into the bottle as you are doing it. Re-cork the bottle and shake well.  Store in a cool dark place for 6 weeks.  Don't let the liquid go below the vanilla pods.  Refill as necessary.  The vanilla beans will last longer than one bottle's worth of rum.

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Twice Baked Parmesan Crackers




I love to make these crackers.  It took me forever to post it because sometimes they just wouldn't crisp right and I just couldn't figure out the cause.  The humidity, maybe?  Then I discovered if you bake them twice, they are even better.  We tried the ones Whole Foods makes and they are delicious but cost $22 a pound!  So I made my own, and I like them better.  These are so easy to make and my toddler looooves them (no goldfish for him!!).  I hope you enjoy this recipe. Please post if you do!

Use real cheese, not the kind of parmesan that comes in a shaker ;)

Twice Baked Parmesan Crackers

shredded parmesan
grated parmesan
parchment paper
metal baking sheet

Preheat oven to 300˚F.  On a metal baking sheet lined with parchment paper, spread out enough shredded parmesan to cover the sheet but in a lacey pattern.  You want "holes" (like the pattern of lace), so that it is not too thick.  Then, fill in the "holes" with grated parmesan, and sprinkle a little all over.  Bake for 20- 40 minutes (depending on how thick you made it) or until it is golden brown all over the top.  Take out and let cool to room temperature, on the baking sheet.  When cool, test to see if you can break off a piece, near the middle: does it come off crisp, or is it bendable?  If you are lucky, sometimes one time baking is enough.  Otherwise, if it is a little bendy, bake again, at 300˚F for about 20 minutes until crispy.  Let cool, break off in pieces, and store in an airtight container.  If they get soft, re-toast to crisp them up again.



Sunday, February 3, 2013

Healthy Chocolate Mints


When making some new fat bomb variations, I came up with an icing of sorts on accident, and it suddenly occurred to me that I could make fat bombs in the shape of Andes chocolate mints... it could be like healthy candy.  After all, isn't that what "fat bombs" are?  For those of you who are coming across this low-carb term for the first time, "fat bombs" are just little healthy bombs of good fat- usually grass-fed butter or virgin coconut oil or something similar mixed with other healthy items- cocoa, stevia, coconut butter or nut butter for instance.  They kill carb cravings by giving your brain what it needs- good fats!  Your brain is made up of 65% fat, did you know?  So here is my recipe, I hope you enjoy it.

Personally, I think a silicone brownie pan is a must for this recipe. But if you don't have that, just carefully line a regular pan (use glass instead of metal if you have it) with parchment paper so that the chocolate does not stick.

Healthy Chocolate Mints

Chocolate:
3 Tablespoons cocoa powder, sifted makes life easier
2 Tablespoons coconut butter
2 Tablespoons grass-fed butter
3 Tablespoons grass-fed cream
2 teaspoons honey (optional)
6 Tablespoons virgin coconut oil
1/4 teaspoon NuNaturals Stevia (if subbing, start with half as much, NuNaturals is less sweet)
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
silicone baking pan or parchment paper lined (bottom and sides) glass pan, about 8x8

Prepare your baking pan wither with parchment paper or if silicone, place on a metal cookie sheet to prevent spilling.  On low heat in a saucepan, melt cocoa powder, coconut butter, butter, cream and honey until well incorporated. Use a wire whisk if you are having problems with clumping cocoa powder.  Once warm and mixed, turn off heat and add virgin coconut oil and stevia.  Stir until blended. Add vanilla and stir.  Pour half the mixture on the bottom of the pan and make sure it is evenly distributed on the bottom.  Place pan (and cookie sheet, if using) inside freezer for 10 minutes or until hardened.  Make the filling during this step, and set aside the other half of chocolate.

Filling:
1 Tablespoon coconut butter
1 Tablespoon grass-fed butter
1 & 1/2 Tablespoons grass-fed cream (or 4 & 1/2 teaspoons)
1 teaspoon raw honey (optional)
3 Tablespoons virgin coconut oil
1/8 teaspoon NuNaturals Stevia (if subbing, start with half as much, NuNaturals is less sweet)
a few drops of peppermint oil.  I used Young Living Brand.  Go slow!
silicone spatula

On low heat in a saucepan, melt coconut butter, butter, cream and honey until well incorporated.  Once warm and mixed, turn off heat and add virgin coconut oil and stevia.  Stir until blended. Add peppermint oil 1 or 2 drops at a time, tasting after each one, until desired mintiness is achieved.  When chocolate in pan is hardened, pour on top with a silicone spatula ready... it will start to harden as it touches the chocolate.  You need to make sure it completely covers the chocolate as evenly as possible. Return to freezer for 5-10 minutes (unless it already hardens and you don't need to).  Pour the rest of the chocolate from the pot on top.  Return to freezer for 10 minutes, then place in refrigerator for 20 minutes.  Carefully release onto large wooden board or marble slab if you have one and cut into rectangular pieces with a sharp knife.  Place candies into a container and keep in fridge to keep them hard.

    

Thursday, January 31, 2013

Blueberry Pancake Jam



Here's a nice change for your pancakes.  I originally posted a blueberry sauce with xylitol, but I thought I could make it more natural.  Blueberries are low-g.i. and I consider them a good fruit for low-carbers. They have a sweetness already, in my opinion.  This make a loose jam or a thicker sauce.  I made them for my toddler, with bite sized pancakes (I used this recipe).  You can sweeten to taste.

Blueberry Pancake Jam
Makes about a cup.  Stores for about a week, but can be frozen.

1 1/2 cups frozen organic blueberries
filtered water
1 Tablespoon arrowroot powder (can use cornstarch but you'll need more, and won't freeze well)
stevia or honey to taste (I have used 1/4 tsp honey)
whisk
blender
flour sifter so starch doesn't clump
sauce pot
glass jelly jar

With blueberries still in the measuring cup, pour enough water in the cup to cover them and let sit 5 - 10 minutes.  Pour into blend, and blend until thoroughly mixed.  Pour into a pot over high heat until mixture boils. Reduce heat to low and let it reduce to a third or a half. Sift in arrowroot powder and whisk immediately until blended.  Sweeten to taste.  Pour on pancakes and leftovers can be refrigerated in the glass jar for up to a week.




Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Gluten Free Low Carb Chocolate Chocolate Chip Muffins

Here are some amazingly chocolatey muffins... not very sweet (you can add more sweetness if you like) but very good! Perfect little to-go breakfast with a hard boiled egg.. if you are having some chocolate cravings! It feels totally decadent to eat one of these for breakfast but each one only has about 7 net carbs.


Gluten Free Low Carb Chocolate Chocolate Chip Muffins
makes 6

3 eggs, separated
2 Tablespoons butter or virgin coconut oil, melted
2 Tablespoons cream or coconut milk
1/4 cup erythritol (or 3 Tablespoons sugar sub, or 1/4 cup honey)
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract, gluten free
1/4 cup cocoa powder
1/4 cup coconut flour (sifted)
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 of a 3.5 ounce 85% chocolate bar, I used Valrhona, chopped  into chips (directions on this page)

Whip egg whites and set aside in fridge or cool place. In a separate bowl, mix egg yolks, melted butter, cream, vanilla, sweetener (erythritol/honey/sub), and salt. Stir in cocoa, and erythritol. Combine coconut flour with baking powder and sift into batter, stirring quickly so that there are no lumps. Fold in egg whites (go here for tips on doing this in such a sticky batter). Add chips.  Pour into greased muffin tins, the batter should make 6. They won't rise that much, so you can fill each tin to the top. Bake at 375 degrees for 15 minutes. It's okay if the muffins still look slightly dark on the top in the middle of the muffin when you take them out, they will not be undercooked, but will stay moist. Enjoy!!!
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Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Gluten Free Pancakes


2013 UPDATED recipe: no agave!
I love pancakes, don’t you? I think this recipe is easy enough to make without getting too crazy with ingredients. You could actually leave out the vanilla and erythritol/sweetener if you wanted to make it even easier. As for milk, you can substitute water or sparkling water (for more volume). I actually used my cultured raw milk, which is like buttermilk. You’ll see in my picture I used blackberries, but any kind of berries will work. You only need a few, so it shouldn’t bother your carbs or G.I.
Now for the syrup… you can use your own judgement. To give you a clue on how natural sweeteners add up, here are some G.I. counts.


Sugar 60 - 65
Pure Maple syrup 54
Honey 58
Coconut Palm Sugar 35
Erythritol 0
Stevia 0


Sometimes when I want maple syrup, I boil butter and a splash of maple syrup in a pot. I let it boil up and caramelize before pouring just a touch on my pancakes. But do what you feel comfortable with. Some ideas: For truly low G.I., you could melt butter with 2 – 3 berries, and pour it on top and serve with whip cream, instead of using syrup. Smush the berries a bit and it will make a fruit syrup. Blueberry Syrup with xylitol, Strawberries and cream topping, or Blueberry Jam topping. Happy pancaking!


Gluten Free Pancakes
 serves 2 
 ECC per serving: made with 6 TBLSP cream: 1.7 ECC, with milk: 8.75 ECC per serving, with coco milk: 2.75 ECC

2 organic eggs
4 - 6 Tablespoons organic milk, cream, or coconut milk – I used cultured raw milk
2 Tablespoons melted butter or high quality coconut oil
1 cup high quality Almond Flour like Honeyville (or could be grainy)
½ teaspoon baking soda
¼ teaspoon sea salt
1 Tablespoon erythritol (or honey, or a little stevia)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
a few berries (optional) (adds 3.5g carbs per Tablespoon)
water


Beat eggs until fluffy. Add 4 Tablespoons (¼th cup) milk/cream and melted butter. Add flour, baking soda, salt, erythritol, and vanilla and beat again to incorporate air in mixture. If mixture is too thick, add the other 2 TBLSP of milk. If still too thick, add a little water until it's looser.  Heat oil in skillet on medium. Spoon batter into rounds in skillet, trying to spread each one out a bit, so that they are not too thick. Quickly drop a few berries (if using) on each pancake. Turn to lower heat.  Pancakes will bubble, then the bubbles will break, leaving holes- this is when you know the pancakes are ready for turning. Make sure the middle is cooked before flipping.  Almond flour pancakes brown quite a bit on the bottom so keep your heat low and cook slowly.  Flip and they should be cooked through pretty quickly.

Saturday, January 19, 2013

BEST Fat Bombs



I love fat bombs.  They really help me stay on track.  And, since I have been WAY off track lately, and it's time to start all over, fat bombs are really saving me. What are they? Basically, they are little chocolate (in this case) truffles that are primarily made up of good fat, used to stop cravings for carbs in their tracks.  The virgin coconut oil gives you energy, and helps regulate your thyroid and adrenals, which is a bonus.  The fats from coconut oil, and especially from pastured grass-fed cow's butter will really satisfy you.  Since good fat is good for you, helping your brain and your body, these will actually help you burn fat if you stay away from the carbs.

Why eat grass-fed dairy? Here's a good article, explaining about CLA, the anti-cancer fat only found in dairy from grass-fed (naturally fed) cows.  Check it out at grassfedtraditions.com, if you don't know about it!

My first two fat bombs.. chocolate and lemon, were both dairy free, by the way, so if you can't have dairy, go on over to those two posts.

I made these with peanut butter, but I also tried a batch with coconut butter (ground coconut like nut butter, I used Artisana brand which is yummy).  Sometimes fat bombs separate in the freezer, leaving a white top to your fat bomb. This happened to my coconut butter version a few days ago, and it was even better... so no worries. I suspect I added 2 extra Tablespoons of coconut oil on accident, when my toddler sweetly distracted me.

I use either mini muffin papers, which I lay inside a tin mini cupcake pan.  However, if you have a mini -muffin silicone pan, that is even easier.  I like HIC brand, it has no silicone smell/taste to baked goods.
I used NuNaturals stevia, which is half as sweet as other brands.  So start with very little and work up to taste- your taste buds might be different than mine.  Write down how much you used and which brand (also post here!) so you will remember what you did for next time- then it's faster to make.

Best Fat Bombs Ever
makes around 16

2 Tablespoons grass-fed butter like Smjör or Kerrygold
3 Tablespoons grass-fed cream
1 Tablespoon raw honey (optional)
3 Tablespoons cocoa powder
2 Tablespoons organic peanut butter OR coconut butter
6 Tablespoons virgin coconut oil
2 Tablespoons ground nuts, I used pecans
1 Tablespoon shredded coconut
1/4 teaspoon NuNaturals powdered stevia, or very little of another brand, to taste
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
silicone mini-muffin pan or regular with mini paper baking cups or silicone molds

First, if your coconut oil is not at a liquid state, you should melt it without destroying its virgin state. I heat a pan of water with a candy or meat thermometer until it gets to 120˚F.  Then, I turn it off and set the jar of virgin coconut oil in it and let it sit until it's melted inside.

In a medium saucepan over low heat, melt butter, cream, honey (if using), cocoa powder, and peanut butter (if using).  Use a whisk to mix all together, if necessary.  Turn off heat and add in coconut oil, coconut butter (if using), nuts, coconut, and stevia (to taste, start out small). Stir until all mixed in together, then add vanilla. Pour into molds/pan/papers and freeze for 10 minutes (if using a silicone pan, put on a cookie sheet so it won't bend and spill).  Then, transfer to refrigerator for 15 minutes.  Pop out of silicone molds or pull them out by the cupcake papers and store in refrigerator in a sealed container.  Eat whenever you have a carb craving!!



  


Tuesday, January 15, 2013

"Breaded" Bay Scallops

This is a recipe from a friend that I updated to gluten-free.. this is an appetizer portion for two, but you can easily increase the portion. You may use herbed butter, or just regular butter.  I've done both.  You can also add a little lemon juice at the end, but I like ours without.

Melissa from Satifying Eats has a new cookbook, that is great! I love it!!  I highly recommend it. It is really a complete grain-free sugar-free cookbook, with everything you can think of. For this dish, I used the Bread-less Bread Crumbs from her book. There is a similar recipe on her blog, that I linked to, below (parsley omitted, although sounds like it would be tasty if you have them!).

I apologize for the picture- my camera seems to be needed a battery replaced, it didn't focus correctly and the scallops didn't last long enough for another picture!!  They are so tasty!

Half the recipe - a generous serving!

Gluten Free "Breaded" Bay Scallops

serves 2-3 as an appetizer

1/2 lb bay scallops
2 Tablespoons Kerrygold herbed butter or plain butter [grass-fed/non GMO like Kerrygold or Smjör]
splash white wine (optional but yummy. alcohol will likely cook off)
2- 3 Tablespoons Breadless Bread Crumbs from Satisfying Eats

Preheat the oven to 400˚F.  In a small baking dish or pie tin, spread around a few thinly sliced pats of butter. You can use a little more than 2 Tablespoons, if you like. Place dish in oven to melt butter.  Remove, and add a splash of white wine.  Put your scallops in a single layer on top, and stir to get the butter all over the scallops, but keep them in a single layer.  Sprinkle the "bread crumbs" lightly on top of the scallops.  Bake for 12 - 18 minutes until done - scallops will be opaque, and breadcrumbs golden.   Serve immediately.

Let me know if you enjoyed this recipe and any tweaks you made to it, and how it came out! Thanks!!

If you are on Facebook, join the discussions with us! I hope to post recipes more often, but have been very busy lately with singing, teaching, and most importantly... Mommy-ing!!