How to Make High Energy, Low Sugar Cookies: Perfect for packing in a lunch
I don't know about you, but now, only a month into the school year, I've completely lost all the steam I had the first couple weeks of school trying to make healthy, unique lunches everyday. I started out the school year like super mom baking cookies and crackers and creating school lunch bento box works of art and now I'm like; here's some cheddar bunnies, a box of raisins and some apple slices, lunch is served...Read More
How to Make a Grilled Peach Salad
Weekends around our house have been so good lately. There is seriously nothing like lazily preparing dinner on the grill while our daughter plays in the backyard and mom and dad sip on a little bit of the summertime sauce. And the peaches. Dear lord. The peaches. It's like biting into a ray of sunshine (sorry to be so trite, but is there any other way to describe it?). So of course peach fizz cocktails were our relaxation liquid of choice this weekend. And, our salad of choice: Grilled Peach Salad with Toasted Almonds and Goat Cheese. Delicious.Read More
How to Make a Dish that Tastes like Summer: Roasted Tomato and Garlic Pasta with Fresh Basil and Turkey MeatballsRead More
How to Make a Roasted Beet and Smoked Trout Salad with Creme Fraiche, Dill and Red Onions
The way the smoked trout mingle with the beets in this salad turning the edges of the trout a beautiful magenta color and then mix with creme fraiche and red onions turning all of the salad bright pink like a summer sunset is just plain magical. It's also magical how the pairing of the sweet beets with the smoky, salty trout and creamy tangy creme fraiche creates a medley of flavors that will turn your dinner table into a fine dining experience. I picked up my smoked trout from the local farm stand in upstate New York where trout is abundant. But, if you don't have access to local trout, most supermarkets have package smoked trout in the same section that you can find smoked salmon. Promise me you will try this salad. It is seriously one of my finest culinary accomplishments.Read More
Heat Up Your Summer Salad with Grilled Watermelon
Grilling watermelon is not a new thing for me. It was something I discovered last summer when my husband mentioned it to me and about lost my brain thinking about the amazing possibilities that grilling watermelon could bring to my dinner table. My first attempt at using grilled watermelon was the thai inspired Grilled Watermelon and Shrimp Salad which came out AMAZING and seriously wowed my dinner guests. This time around I wanted to make something that featured the watermelon so I created this salad. The warmth and sweetness of the cubed grilled watermelon is the star of the show in this arugula, feta and mint salad and the balsamic vinaigrette plays nicely off the sweetness of the melon, rounding out the flavor of the dish.Read More
How to Make a Roasted Chicken and Roasted Vegetable Dinner
It really doesn't get any better than a cast iron roasted chicken with a side of roasted vegetables on a cold wintery day. I think it's my favorite dinner to make not just because it tastes like warmth and love and cozy cabins, but also because it takes so little effort to prepare. We have a cabin in the Catskill Mountains in upstate New York where we spend our weekends recuperating from the hectic city life and in our freezer we almost always have 2-3 organic whole chickens on hand. We can pick up the chickens from our local butcher, Fleisher's, who sources organic local chickens year round. The farm stand down the road keeps all the root vegetables that you can still get in the winter like squash, potatoes and onions. So on any given winter weekend, you can pretty much count on the Miles family eating this dinner in some variation or another.Read More
Recipe for Honey Cake with Banana Cream, Dark Chocolate and Almonds
This honey cake with banana cream and dark chocolate drizzled all over it has been dancing around in my head for months. I've been measuring cups of honey and pureeing bananas in my sleep trying to come up with just the right ratio of sweetness. I finally decided to give it a try this past weekend because I wanted to take my best friend, Emily, a cake to celebrate the birth of her new baby girl. It also happened to be my birthday weekend, so I made some extra cakes and cream and my husband and daughter built a beautifully wonky tribute of cake for my birthday celebration. All the cakes, perfectly sculpted and otherwise, tasted amazing.Read More
Recipe for Refined Sugar Free Vanilla Honey Cupcakes
Honey powder! WHO KNEW?! I saw this cool stuff called honey powder last time I was at Whole Foods, and though it was stupid expensive (Whole Foods ain't cheap!), I had to buy it because I just knew I could do something really cool with it. I pondered the honey powder until I came up with the perfect use: Honey vanilla buttercream frosting! The cupcake batter for these scrumptious vanilla honey cupcakes is super easy to make and comes out really soft and buttery despite the lack of refined sugar. So that problem was solved pretty easily. But how do you make honey buttercream frosting without sugar and not end up with a sticky, gooey mess? I'll tell you! Just use honey powder which you can buy for a whole lot cheaper than Whole Foods online here. Substitute the honey powder for the powdered sugar, add a little raw honey and, viola, delicious honey vanilla buttercream frosting! I'm taking these cupcakes to a toddler Valentine's Day party this afternoon. Now the toddlers can have their sugar induced tantrum free cupcakes and eat them too!Read More
I'm a snacker. Around 2pm I start raiding the pantry for a tasty treat to nibble on. Yes, I know I should grab a banana or an apple or some carrot sticks. But, I still have the mentality of a 7 year old most of the time and "I don't wanna! Nah nah nah!" I want something sweet and savory, crunchy and filling to eat. So I feel like I'm making a healthy compromise between nature's whole foods and a Snickers bar with these chocolate peanut butter bars. Plus they are so handy dandy to throw in your purse or diaper bag for an energy boosting fix. With ground flax seed, chopped nuts, puffed rice and no refined sugar, they are healthy enough to pass as an energy bar. But, the raw honey and peanut butter and carob chips will satisfy those inevitable sweet cravings. Make some up today and put them in your children's lunches or stash a few in your desk and keep the evil candy bars at bay.Read More
These cookies may look healthy, but they taste oh so sinful. They are plenty sweet with the coconut sugar and maple sugar and the chocolate taste is perfection. My husband is a major carob cynic and he could not believe how good they tasted. When cooking gluten free, it is really important to add something to the flours to help with the binding process. Gluten does all of the binding in wheat flour baking. I added xanthan gum to help bind these cookies, but if you can't find it or don't want to make an extra trip to the store, you can use corn starch instead. You should be able to find all of the ingredients I've listed at health food store or Whole Foods. If you don't live near a good health food store you can also order all of the harder to find ingredients online.Read More
Pizzelles are a delicate round cookie that originated in Italy. My grandparents immigrated from Italy and brought the traditional pizzelle cookie with them. My mother has always had a pizzelle iron and has been making them since I was a kid, but they weren't always my favorite cookie as a child because they don't have a lot of sugar in them and are traditionally made with Anise. As an adult, I LOVE them. They are the perfect cookie to leisurely dunk in an after dinner coffee. This year I'm hosting Christmas at my home. As I was going over the cookie menu with my mom, I realized that I couldn't make pizzelles because I don't have an iron. Two days later a Cuisinart Pizzelle Iron showed up on my doorstep in an Amazon box. Mom's are so great, aren't they? I couldn't wait to crack that sucker open and get started on some imaginative pizzelle recipes. I made these whole wheat pizzelles for my daughter, and despite the healthy ingredients, they did turn out rather tasty. But I'm not going to stop with this first batch of pizzelles because I've got visions of pizzelles recipes dancing in my head. Roll them up and make cannolis? Ice cream cups? Orange cardamom pizzelles? The possibilities are endless!Read More
In the evenings, my favorite thing to do (besides watch terrible reality television and eat fudgesicles) is to surf my favorite blogs. While perusing the web, I saw that The Pioneer Woman did a post last week on making healthy freezer dinners. Before my first child, when I actually had an ounce of energy left at the end of the day, I used to make healthy freezer meals for my husband to take to work with him. He never gets to come home for dinner and I feel really bad that he has to eat take out every single night. I still don't have a lot of energy in the evenings, but I figure I could skip one night of the Bachelor to get my fudgesicle eating butt into the kitchen and make up a freezer meal. Cooking this turkey chili is about as easy as it gets. Just throw everything into the pot and let it simmer for about an hour. Easy enough. Portion it out into pint size freezer ziplock bags and freeze flat. That way you can fit more into the freezer and you or your significant other can easily slip it into a briefcase to take to work.
I love this time of year more than any other time of year mainly because of the abundance of fresh vegetables and fruits. I get so overwhelmed with all of the fresh veggies and fruits at the farmer's stand that I sometimes find my fridge full of items that I'm not sure what to do with. Luckily, I grew up with an Italian momma and I'm able to make a pasta dish with my eyes closed. Recently, I bought a bunch of kale and didn't know what to make with it so I looked up kale pasta recipes but couldn't find anything that looked appetizing. So, I came up with my own recipe that you can throw together in a jiffy for a healthy and quick family meal.
Today I have a super simple and delicious recipe that you can serve throughout the summer. Watermelon and mint should be available all summer at your local farmer's market. It is such a fresh and sweet combination of ingredients that you will love having it as a side dish or a desert with many dinners.
I don't know about you, but I crave a burger on about a weekly basis. Now, if I ate a beef burger on a weekly basis I would have to get my big butt to the gym a whole lot more than I currently make it there. So instead of letting the beef burger get the best of me, I like to substitute with healthy ground chicken. A weekly chicken burger has curbed my burger cravings, kept my waist line at a reasonable circumference and (bonus) fulfilled the toddler-will-eat entree requirement for one night a week. I like to add basil, garlic and Worcestershire sauce to my chicken patties to give them a little zip. Enjoy!
As promised, I am rolling out recipes for some of my favorite family meals. This one is a huge hit with my toddler because it has "noodeeze" and turkey meatballs. She isn't so keen on the tomatoes, but I reserve those for my husband and I. Also, the finely chopped greens that end up on the "noodeeze" are a great way to sneak some greens into her picky little mouth. Ramps are only around in the spring and early summer so get em while the gettin' is good!
I've been looking for a way to get my picky one and half year old to eat a healthy breakfast that isn't limited to cheerios and apple juice. She likes oatmeal but god forbid you try and take away an iota of autonomy from her by *gasp* spoon feeding it to her. I have tried baking some of the oatmeal breakfast bars for babies I've seen online, but they are bit too crumbly and mushy and the taste is rather bland. Cookies are pretty much a sure fire way to get any kid to eat so I came up with these low sugar oatmeal raisin cookies that look and taste like the real thing but are actually just a bowl of oatmeal dressed up in a cute little cookie outfit. Even my cookie monster couldn't tell the difference and we had a very peaceful breakfast this morning sans the force feeding, screaming and food throwing.Read More
Ever since I discovered that Ruby loves cheese crackers, I have been researching recipes for homemade cheese crackers. I found this recipe for Carrot Sticks from the fantastic website Weelicious. I modified the recipe by adding more cheese and salt and incorporating paprika which created a cheese cracker with the healthy bonus of carrots and a good amount of cheesy flavor.Read More
Coming up with a 70's themed party favor wasn't easy. We wanted to avoid the trappings of a chintzy favor like the mirror ball key chains and smiley face doodads that you usually get at a 70's theme party. Emily came up with the idea of giving our guests trail mix so that when they "hit the trail" at the end of the night they would have something to munch on. Plus, trail mix seemed like the perfect 70's snack. Katie came up with the idea of using awesome yellow and orange vintage tupperware containers to serve the trail mix in. The trail mix was a huge hit and our guests loved the vintage tupperware. Part of the magic is using equal parts of all of the components. This way each bite has a bit of everything. We ended up calling this treat, "Even Steven Trail Mix".