Bacon Chocolate Chip Cookies

 

INGREDIENTS

  • 2 cups almond flour or meal
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1 ounce dark chocolate, finely grated
  • 2 strips of extra crispy bacon, broken into bits
  • 1/2 cup mini chocolate chips
  • 3 tbsp coconut oil, melted
  • 3 tbsp honey

DIRECTIONS

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. 
  2. Combine flour, salt, and baking soda. Grate chocolate over the dry mixture, add chocolate chips, and set aside.
  3. Melt the coconut oil in the microwave (30 to 45 seconds), add the honey, and mix well.
  4. Combine the wet and dry ingredients. 
  5. Drop spoonfuls on a cookie sheet and bake for 11 minutes.


Makes 24 cookies, 105 calories each
(Fat:  8 g, Carb 7 g, Protein 2 g)

Apple Pie Oatmeal

As the heaters turn up and the frost lines windows, I love warm comfort foods, especially when they are good for you too! This recipe was originally inspired by Bob’s Red Mill’s cookbook, but I have made several modifications until it finally became my perfect autumn/winter breakfast.

Apple Pie Oatmeal (2)

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 large apple, chopped (Honey-crisp is particularly delcious)
  • 1 tbsp coconut oil
  • 1/2 cup steel cut oats (or 1 cup of old fashioned rolled oats)
  • 1/2 cup fresh pressed apple cider
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/8 tsp ground cloves
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped pecans

Apple Pie Oatmeal (3)Apple Pie Oatmeal (1)

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Put the coconut oil in a medium sauce pan on high-medium heat. When the oil is melted, add the chopped apples and spices.
  2. Saute apples until soft, then add the oats, apple cider, and water. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to simmer until the oatmeal thickens (15 – 20 minutes).
  3. Heat the chopped pecans in a fry pan over medium heat. Stir them frequently and watch them as they burn quickly. Remove from heat when they are slightly toasted.
  4. Once the oatmeal has thickened, add the chopped pecans and serve immediately.

Makes 3 servings, 250 calories per serving
(Fat: 13 g, Carb 33 g, Protein 4.3 g)

Curry Butternut Squash Bisque

As the holidays wind down and the cold months of winter are spread before me, I love the excuse for delicious comfort food at the end of a busy, cold day. This soup is particulary delicious after a day on the slopes, with a cold nose and tired achy muscles.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 large (3 lb) butternut squash
  • 1 large apple, skinned and chopped (Honeycrisp is particularly delcious)
  • 1 large orange sweet potato (or yam)
  • 1 sweet onion, chopped
  • 2 TBSP Coconut Oil (or Olive Oil)
  • 1 – 2 cloves of garlic
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp curry powder
  • 1/2 tsp fresh ground pepper
  • 1/2 tsp Tobasco sauce
  • 4 cups of Chicken broth (or vegetable stock for vegetarian)
  • 14 oz can of Light Coconut Milk (or low fat 2% evaporated milk)

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Put butternut squash in the microwave for 2 minutes. Take it out, cut off the stem, and then cut it half at the waist of the squash. Put the flat edge of the squash down on the cutting board, and slowly cut down to skin the squash. Cube the squash into squares and set aside.IMG_5472
  2. Peel sweet potato and chop into cubes. Steam squash and sweet potato in a basket until it’s soft (20-30 minutes). Set aside.IMG_5473
  3. Heat oil in a large saucepan.  Add chopped onions, apples, curry, pepper and salt, sautéing over medium heat for 15 minutes. Add garlic and sauté for 2 more minutes.
    IMG_5474
  4. Add squash, sweet potato, Tobasco, and chicken broth to the onion base. Bring to boil and simmer for 15 minutes.
  5. Using an immersion blender, puree the soup until it is smooth. IMG_5481
  6. Add the coconut milk to the soup, return to simmer, and the soup is ready to serve. This recipe freezes very well for spur of the moment soup on a cold winter day.IMG_5482

Makes 8 cups, 140 calories per cup.

Pumpkin Pie Custard

Autumn is one of my favorite times of year. The air feels crisp and clean, apples taste sweeter, and my favorite winter squash abounds: Pumpkin! How can you not love a vegetable that makes the most delicious desserts? I use every possible opportunity to incorporate pumpkins into my fall recipes, but pumpkin pie custard has to be my favorite. I eat it for breakfast or as a sweet treat after lunch or dinner. Best of all, it is filling and satisfying but without all the extra sugar and processed flour in pumpkin pie.

20131026-082548.jpg

INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 x 15 oz cans of Fresh Pumpkin
  • 1/2 cup Raw Honey
  • 1 tbsp Pumpkin Pie Spice (1-1/2 tsp cinnamon, 1/2 tsp ginger, 1/4 tsp cloves)
  • 4 Large Eggs
  • 14 oz can of Light Coconut Milk (or low fat 2% evaporated milk)

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Preheat oven to 425° F.
  2. Lightly grease glass bakeware with butter (one 13″ x 8″ dish, or several smaller dishes)
  3. Mix together pumpkin, honey and spices (KitchenAid mixer will work well!). Add the eggs. Last, pour in the coconut milk.
  4. Pour the liquid into your greased dishes. Place in the middle of the oven and bake for 15 minutes.
  5. Reduce heat to 350 degrees and bake for 40 – 60 minutes (depending on the size of your pan). The custard will be done when you can shake it and the middle does not jiggle (or insert a butter knife in the middle and see if it comes out clean).
  6. Let the pumpkin cool completely (overnight is ideal) and serve cold, either as breakfast or a dessert.

20131026-082530.jpg

Makes 12 servings, 100 calories per serving.

OPTIONAL Alternative Serving Ideas:

  • Top custard with nonfat vanilla greek yogurt as a creamy topping.
  • Serve custard with a plate of ginger snap cookies for a sweet dip at parties.

Pumpkin Custard French Toast

This recipe could also be called “Pumpkin Coffee Creamer Reclaimed.”   Essentially, I add a couple eggs to the pumpkin creamer that is already well-stocked in my fridge, and we have some delicious pumpkin french toast batter!

20131026-082757.jpg

INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 cups Pumpkin Coffee Creamer
  • 2 Large Eggs
  • 8 Slices of Bread (slightly stale brown rice bread or New Cascadia Honey GF bread works well!)
  • Ground Cinnamon

DIRECTIONS:

1.   Preheat griddle to high (or 400° F). Add 1 tsp of butter to grease the surface.

2.   Preheat oven to 170° F.

3.   Whisk eggs and blend with pumpkin creamer in a flat bottomed bowl or dish.

4.   Soak each slice of bread for 30 seconds in the batter.

5.   Place bread on preheated griddle and sprinkle cinnamon on the top.

6.   Cook bread for 3 minutes, or until the bread is browned and crispy.

20131026-082809.jpg

OPTIONAL Topping Ideas:

  • Almond Butter
  • Maple Syrup
  • Toasted Pecans
  • Vanilla Nonfat Greek Yogurt
  • Pumpkin Nonfat Greek Yogurt
  • Sauteed apples with cinnamon

Pumpkin Coffee Creamer

When pumpkin lattes are released early each fall, I am the girl who is standing in the front of the line at the coffee shop. I love them! But they do have a fair amount of sugar, processed ingredients, and (surprise!) gluten. Yikes! As necessity–or desperation–is the mother of invention, I had some trial and errors in my kitchen until I created a pumpkin coffee creamer that is delicious, satisfying, and made with solid, gluten-free ingredients.

20131026-082638.jpg

INGREDIENTS:

  • 32 oz Vanilla Almond Milk, Unsweetened
  • 32 oz Coconut Milk, Unsweetened
  • 7.5 oz (1/2 can) Pumpkin Puree
  • 3/4 cup Raw Honey
  • 1/4 cup Mulling Spices in Satchel (or 1 tbsp Pumpkin Pie Spice)
  • 1 tsp Vanilla extract

DIRECTIONS:

1.   Combine ingredients in a large sauce pan over medium heat.

2.   Stir periodically, allowing ingredients to simmer for 45 – 60 minutes.

3.   Remove spice satchel, and pour the liquid through a mesh strainer to catch the pulp.

photo 2

4.   Pour the strained liquid into a glass jar and store in your refrigerator.

photo 3

5.   Serve a healthy portion with coffee (I add 1/4 cup of the milk for a 16 oz cup of coffee).  Shake well before each use as the pumpkin may to settle.

20131026-082651.jpg

Makes 2 quarts, or 32 servings of 1/4 cup, 35 calories per serving.

Chips and Dip … Revised

From book clubs to movie nights to prayer groups, I love inviting people to come into my home, drink wine and be together. While there is something profoundly delicious about the standard “chips and salsa” fare for such occassions, I have added a few additional dips and and dippers to add color and diversity. This is not so much “cooking” as it is an idea for a quick way to create a vibrant, colorful spread for a party.

Book Club Chips & Dip

DIPPERS:

  • Tortilla Chips (look for the 3 – 5 ingredient chips: corn, oil, salt, touch of lime)
  • Mini Bell Peppers, halved with the tops cut off
  • Jiama, skinned and cut into flat strips, spritzed with fresh lime and chili powder

DIPS:

  • Guacamole (fresh avocados, garlic, salt and pepper, and some fresh salsa)
  • Fresh Salsa
  • Cowboy Caviar (available pre-made at Trader Joe’s or Costco; bell peppers, black beans, and corn)