Sweet Potato Meatballs

Meatballs

INGREDIENTS

  • 2 yams or red sweet potatoes
  • 1 zucchini (optional)
  • 1 lb of ground beef (grass-fed) or ground turkey
  • 2 TBSP Tomato Paste
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • Add 1 – 2 tsp of your favorite fresh herbs – Rosemary, Thyme, Oregano
  • 2 Eggs
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • Pinch Ground Pepper

DIRECTIONS

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line a cookie sheet or rectangular pan with aluminum foil.
  2. Peel the sweet potatoes, cut into large chunks and cook in a steamer or boiling water. Check that they are soft and well cooked using a fork (should take about 15 minutes). Drain water and mash potatoes.
  3. Grate the zucchini on the medium fine teeth of a cheese grater.
  4. Mix together all the ingredients until well blended, and make into balls (about 16).
  5. Cook the meatballs on your lined cookie sheet for 18-20 minutes. Serve over pasta or spaghetti squash with fresh marinara sauce.

*Note: These meatballs freeze very well. Line a cookie sheet with wax paper and space out the meatballs without touching. Put them in the freezer for about 2 hours until they harden. Then put all the meatballs in a freezer-safe container and take them out one at a time when you need them.

Makes 16 meat balls, calories vary depending on type and leanness of meat

Banana Pancakes

For a summer breakfast treat, play Jack Johnson’s Banana Pancakes and whip up these very simple, paleo-friendly pancakes. They are adorably small and snack-able, but satisfying and delicious.

Banana Pancakes

INGREDIENTS

  • 2 ripe bananas
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/8 tsp cinnamon
  • Dash Nutmeg
  • 2 tsp Coconut oil (for the fry pan)

DIRECTIONS

  1. Mash the ripe bananas
  2. Add the eggs and spices to the banana mash mix well
  3. Add  1 tsp of coconut oil to a skillet and heat up to medium-high heat (cast iron works well for even heat distribution)
  4. Drop dollar size amounts of batter on the pan. When the pancakes are slightly dry on the edges and bubbly in the middle, they are ready to flip.
  5. Add more oil as needed between batches of pancakes
  6. Serve with fresh peaches, berries, or almond butter and maple syrup

Makes 24 dollar pancakes, 23 calories each
(Fat 0.9g, Carb 2.4g, Protein 0.9g)

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)

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.
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  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.

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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.

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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!

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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.

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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.

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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.

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

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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.

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

Chocolate Peanut Butter Swirl Coconut Ice Cream

When it comes to dessert , the taste really needs to be worth the calories. Therefore, my general rule is make dessert as decadent as possible, enjoy every spoonful, and be satisfied with a smaller portion.  Dairy ice cream, even in small doses, tends to make me feel a bit sluggish, so I started trying some non-dairy ice creams, and that is how I fell in love with the taste and creamy texture of ice cream made with coconut milk. Unfortunately, this treat also tends to be rather expensive, except for the simple flavors I can find at Trader Joe’s. Thus, with a little creativity, I have sought to make a delicious, calorie-worthy, dessert of excellence. photoINGREDIENTS:

  • Pint of Chocolate Ice Cream made with Coconut Milk
  • 1/4 Cup salted creamy peanut butter

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Set ice cream on counter to soften slightly (the time it takes to get from the store to home is generally the perfect amount of time for the ice cream to soften)
  2. Put ice cream and peanut butter in kitchen aid mixer on a low setting and mix together for 30 seconds.
  3. Scrape ice cream out of kitchen aid mixer, put it back in the ice cream carton, and return to freezer. Ready to Serve.

Makes 4 servings, 340 calories per serving.

OPTIONAL Chocolate Peanut Butter Hard Shell Topping:

  1. Melt 1 tablespoon of chocolate chips with one tablespoon of peanut butter for 30 seconds in microwave. Stir. If not melted, continue to microwave at 15 second intervals until smooth
  2. Pour melted chocolate peanut butter topping directly over ice cream. It should harden within a minute or two.

OPTIONAL Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Cookie:

  1. Follow recipe for Flourless Chocolate Chip Cookies, omitting baking soda and eggs
  2. Microwave for 45 seconds, then pile on the ice cream

Homemade (Dairy-Free) Creamer

Vanilla Spice Almond Milk

When a certain well-known coffee shop recently came out with the delicious Vanilla Spice latte, I was enthralled! The simplicity of a warm vanilla latte mixed with the spicy cardamom was absolutely delicious. After indulging in this sugary treat one too many times, I decided it was time to see if I could recreate my own version with raw ingredients and less processed sugar. And now I cannot get through my morning without it.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1/2 Gallon of Vanilla Unsweetened Almond Milk (or Coconut Milk works too)
  • 1 tsp Cardamom seeds
  • 1/4 cup of honey
  • 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Combine all ingredients in large sauce pan over low-medium heat.

photo 12.  Cover and let it simmer for 45 – 60 minutes, stirring occasionally. The longer it simmers, the more of the delicious cardamom flavor will come out.

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3.  Pour the liquid through a mesh strainer to catch the cardamom seeds.

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

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5.  Serve a healthy portion with coffee (I add 1/2 cup of the milk for a 16 oz cup of coffee). Due to the chemistry of the almond milk and the coffee, curdling does occur sometimes, but the texture and taste should be unhindered.

Makes 8 cups, 60 calories per cup (or 30 calories per 1/2 cup serving)