Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Vegan Oatmeal Carob Cookies

I wanted to make oatmeal cookies, but after looking through all the recipe books at my house (sadly the rest are still at my moms house) I couldn't find one. I was wanting chocolate, but I wanted something a bit different. After searching in my pantry for things to put in my cookies I noticed a lovely container of carob. "Hmmm," I said to myself, "I wonder if that would be good. I think their is instant chocolate oatmeal, so it should be good." Thus I preceded to type it into google. To my somewhat surprise I found a recipe for Vegan Oatmeal Carob Cookies. You can finde that recipe here. I switched out the brown sugar for 1/2 cup fructose and 2tsp maple syrup (you can use molasses. I just didn't have any), the soymilk for an almond alternative, and the vegetable oil for light olive oil (doesn't have the olive taste, and I can get it cheep in bulk).  They turned out pretty good, but I think that next time I will add 1/4 cup of apple sauce just so that they come out a bit fluffier and a little more moist. 

Monday, July 23, 2012

Just a little bit to say, "Hey, check this out!"

My friend Audrey is a stay at home mom, and like many others is crafty and would like to sell some of what she makes. She has receiving blankets, burp clothes, and travel wipe cases for good prices. She also can customize them. You can find her Etsy shop here. She doesn't have much up yet, but she is working on it, so check out her shop if you or someone you know is expecting or already has a baby. Have a great day everyone, and I'll be posting some super yummy healthy recipes soon.

Friday, July 20, 2012

What I have bean up to this week


Figuring out how to make: spirally pasta. photo.JPG roll into sheets,(I use a 5, my pasta roller goes up to 8) and cut then twistphoto.JPG

Making lunch for Jacob: photo.JPG Qinoia, chopped cucumber, shredded carrot, cilantro, orange juice, dulce (or salt) , pepper.
Making grilled cheese with mustard and tomatoes: photo.JPG
Embroidering a rose to make a clutch:photo.JPG
Brewing oolong and Ginger Ale:photo.JPG  photo.JPG
Foraging plums and apples: (plumbs seen above) 
Making trips to the post office: photo.JPG I thought the light made it look like we were in an alien space ship. lol
Having fun outside: photo.JPG (yes those sunflowers are at least 8ft tall and they hardly get watered.)
Visiting friends: photo.JPG Played cards with my cousins and then watched Breakfast club.

Some songs I like to listen to while cooking:


Monday, July 16, 2012

Recipes from Friday

Wednesday we got a case, that's right, a case, of big ripe tomatoes, for free. Oh ya! There is a nice place in Utah called Castle Valley, and in this nice little place is a boarding school/farm. My Father-in-law has bean there helping with maintenance and working on the farm. He was back for a couple of weeks, but when a lady that works there too came here and picked him up, we got a very nice present. Here is a little of what I did with them.
Made quiche, 
  • Ingredients:

  • 3 eggs, 

  • 1 cup milk, 

  • 1/2 bunch cilantro, 

  • few Dashes of hot sauce, 

  • 1/4 cup chopped onion

  • 1-2oz green chilies,

  •  1/4 cup cheese if desired. 

  • dash salt,

  • 2tsp cumin. 

  • 12 medium to large tomatoes hulled. 

Put some oil around the tomatoes, and place one in each muffin tin cup. Mix ingredients together, poor into hulled tomatoes. (1/2 to 1/3 full) Bake at 400 for 45min-1hr. (time will depend on moisture content, may take longer than 1hr)
Made Lasagna cups.

What you will need:
  • A muffin pan
  • Lasagna recipe of choice, and ingredients for that recipe (I used a red sauce with olives, asiago, and mozzarella.)
  • 1 package of wonton wrappers (48 wrappers) 
Preheat your oven to 375 and oil your pan. Put one wonton wrapper in the bottom of each cup, and assemble your lasagna according to your preferred recipes instructions, making sure that the wonton (noodle) layers have the points facing so that they aren't right on top of each other. This will make it look and stay together better. I did a wonton, the sauce, grated asiago, wonton sauce etc, until on the top i did sauce, mozzarella, tiny bit of asiago, and no wonton. Bake for 20 min and then let them cool for 10 min. once they cool, they will come out of the pan easily. 

Made stuffed tomatoes
  • 8 medium-large tomatoes, hulled (removing pulp and seeds)
  • 2 cups of bread crumbs
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1/2 bunch of chopped basil (you can use 4 tbsp of dried)
  • 1/4 to 1/2 cup olives, chopped (black, kalamata, or any other you think will be yummy)
  • 1/4 to 1/2 cup Asiago or Parmesan 
  • Salt an pepper to taste
  • olive oil
Preheat your oven to 425. Coat the outside of the tomatoes in oil, and place each one in a muffin tin, ramekin, or in a high walled casserole dish. Mix the bread crumbs, garlic, basil, olives, half the cheese, and the salt and pepper together in a bowl. fill each tomato with the mixture and put a bit of cheese on the top of each. Bake for 30-40 minutes. 

Friday, July 13, 2012

Broccoli and Rice (or quinoi) casserole

I don't know if you have seen a recipie floating around, naimly on pintrest,  with this picture,
Doesn't it look good? I thought so, and decided to make one. You can find the recipe here. However, when I looked up the recipe, I was saddened to see bad ingredients. I was expecting the caned soup (though hoping it wasn't their) but not the mayonnaise (apparently the original recipe had more!) or the splenda/sugar. I didn't think people still used splenda, didn't stevia take over yet? It's so bad, like bowel problems bad, and so many others. You can read more about aspartame here
Since I didn't want to go to the store for a can of soup with who knows what in it, I decided to look up a recipe for a substitute (not realizing their was one at the bottom). I found that here. And as always, I had to alter quite a bit of the recipe to make it healthier.
I was going to use quinoi in a salad later, so I decided to go with rice because I had never even had the original casserole at all. 

Here is my version.
For the soup substitute- makes a substitute for 1 14 1/2 oz can of condensed soup
  • 2 tbsp of butter or you can use peanut, sunflower, grape seed, or other good oil. (I used peanut)
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 1 tsp Tamarie or Soy sauce (you could also use braggs liquid aminos)
  • 1 tsp of garlic or Spike (Muti-purpose, good for everything seasoning. you can find this at a helthfood store. I found it at city market too)
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • pinch of salt (you can leave the salt out because the soy sauce has plenty)
  • Pepper to taste
  • 1/3 cup finely chopped broccoli 
 In a saucepan, sauté the brocolie in the butter/oil until the broccoli is tender. Add the flour, and seasoning, (Tamarie, garlic) Slowly whisk in the milk, and Bring to a boil. Stir until thickened. You can add the broccoli later if it is going into something that will cook for a while, and just combine the four with the oil. This will make it so that you can brown the flour just a bit, adding more flavor. Use mushrooms instead of broccoli if you want a cream of mushroom soup, Use 1/2 cup of chicken stock and only 1/2 cup of milk, and chicken instead of broccoli for cream of chicken soup. You can add more milk to make an actual soup.

For the casserole- 
  • One 10 oz can of soup, or homemade version (you can use 14 oz)
  • 1/3 cup yogurt or sour cream (I like yogurt)
  • 2 tablespoons milk
  • 1/4 to 1/2 cup of shredded white cheddar, pepper jack, or other cheese
  • 1/8 to 1/4 cup shredded asiago or parmesan cheese (plus a bit more for the top)
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp pepper and salt if needed
  • 2 cups cooked broccoli
  • 1 1/2 cups  cooked quinoa or rice

To cook quinoa or rice:
  • 3/4 cup quinoa or rice
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

Rinse quinoa/rice. In a small saucepan combine the quinoa/rice, water, and salt.  Bring to a boil, reduce heat to low and cover.  Cook for 18-20 minutes, or until fluffy and the white ring/tail is visible (for the quinoi). For the rice cook until the rice is tender and their is no more water, about 20 to 25 min.  Fluff with a fork.
Preheat oven to 350 and coat a shallow (8×8 in or 5-6 cups) casserole dish – or individual ramekins – with oil or butter.
In a large bowl combine the soup, yogurt/sour cream, milk, shredded cheese, , pepper, (salt) and nutmeg. Stir in the quinoa/rice and broccoli.
Spoon mixture into the dish or dishes.  Sprinkle a couple of tablespoons of Parmesan or asiago and bake for 35-40 minutes (20-25 minutes for ramekins) or until bubbly on the edges and golden.  Makes 8 generous 1/2-cup servings.
Again the recipes that I went by (and altered) are casserole, and soup. The first link also has a recipe for the soup at the bottom of the page. This recipe turned out great, and from what I've heard the originals taste amazing too. Have fun cooking, and if you try alterations I would love to hear about them. 

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Food this month (so far) mulberries and pasta

Our bike while we were waiting for our neighbor to help pick berries.
Almost everyone stared at it as they drove past.

 Mulberries are so great for making jam. If you include a few unripe ones, they will add pectin so you don't need to add your own. Plus the ripe berries are so sweet, you hardly need to add any sugar. I made mine with some apricots which made it a bit more tart.

I love making hash and eggs. They taste so good with any spices, whether they be curry, western, Mexican,  or any other flavor your in the mood for. If you cook your eggs sunny side up, the yolks will be like a gravy. SO tasty!

 We went to the Korean restaurant by my house for the first time. The food was so good! They had the best everything. Unfortunately they were in a terrible location, so they didn't get eniough business. They closed 2 weeks after we tried it, but at least we were able to go back right before they closed. However they did inspire me to try out some different recipes, so their might be a few coming up soon.

Easy White sauce and noodles:
2 - 4 servings 5- 10 minutes
2 tbsp butter (or peanut or gape seed oil)
2tbsp flour
1 cup whole milk (or nut or rice milk)
salt and pepper to taste

Melt butter in a saucepan over low heat; stir in flour. Stir and cook for about 2 minutes. Do not brown. Gradually stir in milk and continue cooking the sauce over low heat, stirring constantly, until it begins to thicken. Season with salt and pepper. Toss with cooked linguinefettuccine, or other pasta, my favorite is bow tie (I like how it holds the sauce). Also you might want to add some chicken or salmon. The salmon adds color and tastes fantastic! 

For some more flavor, add tomatoes, basil, and olives. Or try adding some mexican seasoning. I really like adding herbs de provence. I love the lavender in it. Their are so many difrent ways you can take this.If you add meat to it, you might want to consider cooking it with a rub from a seasoning that you want in your sauce. Just remember to go light with the seasoning in the sauce if you put a lot on the meat, or light on the meat if you put a lot in the sauce. 

This is something that I make for a quick dinner. Their is no need to spend much time over on it. 

For an Alfredo sauce try this: 
2 - 4 takes only about 10 minutes to make.
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1/8 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 cups grated Parmesan
  • 1 teaspoons grated lemon zest
  • Pinch freshly grated nutmeg
  • Salt and freshly ground white pepper
Stir the cream and lemon juice in a heavy skillet. Add the butter and cook over medium heat for about 3 minutes. Add the rest of the ingredients and toss with fettuccine. 

Monday, July 9, 2012

Sewing and painting.

 I oiled my sewing machine the other day, and then I got the sewing fever. I made a two skirts. One I made with a piece of fabric that I cut some trailing bits off, sewed some pleats to make it fit better, and put some elastic in the back so that it can be worn as a dress or a skirt.
The other skirt I made was from a round table cloth. I folded it from the center so that it was a cone (or A) shape. Then I cut the center so that it would fit around my waist. I hemmed it up and put some lace on it. It was a bit to big so I put a button on and some lace ribbon on another side far eniough away so that it would fit when put around the button.

In the craft room I was tired of walls that weren't painted, so I took some acrylic paint and watered it down so that it was a better consistency for wall painting. In the first picture I used a towel rack for some of my scarves that I use on a more frequently. In the second picture I had broken a mirror, and I really liked it, so I decided to turn it into a chalk board. 

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Do you make it?

If you are one of those people who like to make various products instead of buying them, or you want to start making more from home I suggest you check out this nifty book called Making It, radical home ec for a post-consumer world, by Kelly Coyne and Erik Knutzen. This book has most everything to get you started on the right foot. it shows how to make olive oil lamps, Bathroom and kitchen necessities, (soap, tooth powder, styling gel, herbal remedies, stocks, breads, condiments, etc.) basic mending, making vinegar, composting, chicken coops, and quite a lot more.

They also have a great book on Urban Homesteading called the urban homestead. I found this book very helpful. Here is a link to this book at amazon.com.