Monday, December 20, 2010

5-Ingredient Peppermint Patty Recipe

I have long delayed in posting anything, let alone this promised post of my peppermint patty recipe.  These are a delicious treat for any holiday gathering so this is a timely week to share.  I still need some tricks to make them more attractive and soften more slowly, but I think that would require a candy mold (or perhaps a mini-ice cube tray?) and more work with my chocolate.  For now, these work just fine and are quite simple.  Feel free to adjust it to your liking (more coconut oil, less honey, etc).  This is not chemistry (unless your chocolate seizes, but then you'll just have to put it aside for fudge making and start over).

1 cup E.V. Coconut Oil
1/2 cup Raw Honey
2-3 ounces 100% Chocolate
2 tsp Peppermint Extract
2 tsp Vanilla Extract (or finely grated vanilla beans and a pinch of stevia powder)

Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and place in your freezer.

Begin slowly melting your chocolate and vanilla (or grated beans and stevia).  My picture shows previously melted chocolate for I had made these two days in a row and I had leftover chocolate.

While you wait, mix the coconut oil, honey, and peppermint extract.  I typically use a spoon, but your food processor or a fork would be fine too.  Mix it until there are no remaining clumps of coconut oil (clumping will depend on the temperature in the room and of the utensils).

Spoon 1Tbsp dollops of coconut oil mixture onto the frozen baking sheet.  Then return to freezer.

Make sure chocolate is smooth and well-combined with vanilla extract.  Unfortunately for this post, I was making soup at the same time I was photographing this recipe, and the added moisture in the air caused my chocolate to seize batch after batch until I realized it was the soup and not me (our house was built in the 1920's and has no fan in the kitchen).  I now have some fudge recipes to invent and will have to wait on updating these photos.  So below, you can see my seized chocolate =(

Once coconut dollops have frozen dip them quickly in the chocolate mixture and cover as evenly as possible (I like to put the bumpy side down first, swirl it around, then flip).  Coconut oil transfers temperature quickly, thus it cools and hardens quickly, but will also start melting quickly, so work quickly.  Do not stress, however, for unless your house temp is over 76 degrees f. the coconut oil, even if soft, will still be solid.

Place tray back in the freezer to re-set the dollops and quickly cool the chocolate.  Enjoy!

If taking to a gathering, I typically also freeze my serving dish to help keep them cool in transport.  I like to use my corning-ware for this as I can freeze the lid as well.  Usually, by the time they are being eaten they are the perfect temperature.

I wish I had information on how long these keep but they never last long around here.  You can store them in the fridge or freezer.

This post is a part of Real Food Wednesdays hosted by Kelly the Kitchen Kop and Fight Back Fridays hosted by Food Renegade.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Gluten-free, Dairy-free Desserts

This week was filled with trying to create recipes to provide yummy treats while keeping gluten and dairy (and nut and egg white and soy) free.

Here were my attempts:

I adapted the cupcake recipe I made for my son's birthday last year.  The gluten/dairy free ones are pictured on the right.  I subbed a mix of brown rice flour and arrowroot powder, and used coconut oil and coconut milk instead of butter and milk.  They were quite tasty, but it is important to make sure the gluten-free ones cool completely before eating, or else they are much too crumbly.  Refrigeration helps too.

A coconut milk smoothie is my fall back quick fix for a snack (mind you I am still nursing, so I find myself in need of extra calories throughout the day).  I blend coconut milk, some fresh and/or frozen fruit, and a spoon full of raw honey (not pictured).  This photo was taken on the 4th of July, as it seemed quite festive.

This carob-coconut log recipe still needs work, but it involved buckwheat flour, coconut oil, rapadura, some salt, and coconut flakes.

This morning I decided to attempt some peppermint patties.  See my recipe here.

This post is a part of Tuesday Twister hosted by GNOWFGLINS. What was twisting in your kitchen last week?

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Soaked Granola

This week I experimented with a soaked granola technique I have been thinking about for quite some time.  It worked well.  My family enjoyed it as a snack and also loved it drowned with raw milk as cold cereal (which really never happens here) for the first few hot days of summer.  Now I need to go start a new batch!

Soaked Granola

Oats (gluten-free oats if need be)
Raw Almonds (if you can find them) prepared according to crispy almonds* recipe in Nourishing Traditions
Raw Honey
Cinnamon (optional)
Any other desired ingredients (optional)

Soak oats for 7 hours as follows, 1to1 oats and water, plus 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar, buttermilk, lemon juice, or yogurt (I choose ACV because we are working with a dairy allergy right now, but I also find it does not turn the oats to mush as quickly as yogurt).
The oats will have absorbed most of the liquid, so place them, as is, in your dehydrator (or oven set at 150) until crisp.
Break up oats and place them in large bowl.
Chop up crispy almonds* in desired proportion to oats and add to bowl.
Add handfuls of raisins in desired proportion.
Sprinkle cinnamon generously (optional)
Add anything else that sounds good (unsweetened coconut flakes, other crispy nuts, banana chips, other dried fruits, homemade carob chips, perhaps some melted coconut oil if you want to add some fat content)
Add a large dollop of raw honey, enough to be worked in and make everything a little sticky. (At this point my husband looked at me and asked me if I knew what I was doing because he didn't think I was doing it right.  I gave him a look that suggested he drop the commentary.)
Use a butter knife to cut the honey into the mix.  Cut until everything is well mixed and coated with a thin layer of stickiness.
Place in a 350 degree oven on rimmed baking sheet (parchment lined) for 10 minutes or so (depending on how large a batch you have made and how cooked you would like your granola).
Remove and break up for storage or instant snacking.

*For crispy almonds, find raw almonds (preferably skinless), soak in salt water (4 cups almonds, 1 tbsp sea salt, covered with filtered water) for 7-10 hours, then drain and dehydrate until crisp.

This post is a part of Real Food Wednesdays hosted by Kelly The Kitchen Kop.  For other recipes and inspiration, visit the carnival!

Tuesday Twister: Gluten-free dinners and Granola

With my husband out of town for the past 4 days, dinners have not been elaborate.  A couple nights we simply chopped and salted cold (precooked) chicken meat, cubbed some cheese, and ate carrots with baba ganouj on the side.  Read; It has not been picture worthy.  I did remember to pull out the camera a few times over the last week, and here is what I caught.

Brown rice pasta with coconut oil fried shrimp, sprouted lentils, and goat cheese

Sprouted lentil soup with bacon and celery 

Yes, it is summer and I made soup.  I have not been able to drink raw milk with my daughter's allergies, so broth is my only calcium source at the moment!  
Hence good, gelatinous broth was also a part of my last week and incorporated into just about everything.

Onion, cabbage, and beet greens sauted in bacon fat with left over steak slices (don't the beet greens - and reds - add such lovely color!?)

My fun recipe attempt this week was a soaked oat granola (recipe to follow tomorrow)

This post is a part of Tuesday Twister by GNOWFGLINS.  What was twisting in your kitchen last week?

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Nourishing Yumm Bowls with Homemade Sauce

We recently discovered my 10-month-old has a slight allergy to wheat, dairy, soy, peanuts, walnuts, and egg whites.  In my desperation to find something to feed myself in the days after this discovery, I determined to create a healthier version of Yumm sauce.  Cafe Yumm is a popular "healthy" restaurant in my town.  Their sauce is secret.  The best knock-offs I could find online involved soy and canola oil.  Ick.  My recipe received a thumbs up from my husband, but sadly, made me realize I also have to add almonds to the allergy list.

Nourishing Yumm Sauce:

1/2 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1/2 cup almond meal from crispy almonds
1/3 cup nutritional yeast
2/3 cup soaked and long cooked garbanzo beans
1/2 cup water
2/3 cup lemon juice
4 garlic cloves
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp homemade curry blend (freshly ground fenugreek, coriander, fennel and pepper mixed with turmeric powder)
1/2 tsp dried basil
1/2 cup fresh cilantro

Place all ingredients in food processor and blend until smooth.  Tweek as much as you like to taste.

Nourishing Yumm Bowls (an easy to prepare lunch once you have your ingredients prepared in bulk):

Mix prepared basic black beans (according to instructions in NT, i.e. soaked) and prepared rice (also soaked) in a sauce pan to gently reheat.
Remove from heat and place in individual bowls.
Add several spoonfuls of nourishing Yumm sauce and mix well.
Top with diced tomatoes, sliced avocado, creme fraiche (unless you have a dairy allergy), and cilantro.
Optional, add lacto-fermented salsa.

This post is a part of Real Food Wednesdays hosted by Kelly the Kitchen Kop and Cheeseslave as well as Fight Back Fridays by Food Renegade

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Chocolate, Liver and Yumm Sauce, Oh My!

I am long overdue for a report on the happenings in my new kitchen.  Here is a little taste.

Top Row
*Strawberries galore for a catering event at my alma mater
*Salmon and Asparagus
*My own attempt at a more nourishing Yumm sauce (recipe to come soon).
*The homemade Yumm bowl
*Yumm bowls seen with hummus (top) and baba ganouj (bottom)

Middle Row
*Room for many fermenting projects, like souring flour for pancakes
*A collection of culturing wonders: orange marmalade, beet kvass (back), creme fraiche (front), salsa
*Delicious mushrooms and green onions (with a little white wine in the back ground) preparing to become...
*The best way I have ever tasted liver.  I would go so far as to say I actually enjoy this. I can eat it daily.  I should have tried this Nourishing Traditions recipe years ago.

Bottom Row
*Making my own chocolate mouse with coconut cream and raw honey
*Stuffed grape leaves (recipe in NT)
*Coconut milk smoothie (a regular occurrence around here lately)
*Steak "salad," also known as what-to-do-if-you-accidentally-bought-a-lean-steak-you-cannot-chew (see recipe below)

Steak "Salad" Recipe:
1. Unintentionally purchase <4% fat steak
2. Give up on steak you bought, seasoned, and slightly overcooked because you are accustomed to cooking meat with FAT.
3. Store steak in the refrigerator because you have a hard time throwing away food, even food you won't eat.
4. Forget your meal plan the next day, and wonder what is for dinner.
5. Remember tough steak.
6. Slice tough steak very thinly and then cut into 1 inch long bites
7. Drizzle with Extra Virgin Olive Oil and aged Balsamic vinegar, lemon juice, salt, freshly ground pepper, and a tiny bit of flax oil.
8. Eat
9. Marvel at how the added fat from the "salad" dressing allows you to chew and enjoy your previously abandoned steak.

This post is a part of Tuesday Twister, hosted by GNOWFGLINS.  What's twisting in your kitchen?

Monday, June 7, 2010

Menu Plan Monday 6-7-10

I am finally back in a full-sized kitchen and still reveling in the fact that I can bring multiple dishes to completion at the same time.  It is a good feeling.  So, along with a return to cooking, I should return to blogging about what I am cooking. Without further ado, here is the plan for the week.

B: Banana, porridge
L:Coconut milk smoothie,
D: Steak with dipping sauce, potatoes, salad with aged balsamic vinaigrette
Prep: Soak oats

B: Banana, porridge
L:Egg yolk, potato, bacon scramble
D:Roast Chicken, coconut rice, Salad
Prep: Make Baba Ganouj, soak chick peas, start Kombucha, start new sourdough mother, soak buckwheat and freshly ground amaranth

B: Pancakes (buckwheat and amaranth) with marmalade
L:Beans and Rice with creamed avocado sauce
D: Spaghetti with brown rice pasta
Prep: Cook chick peas,

B: Coconut milk smoothie
L: Scramble
D: Lamb chops, ginger carrot and chick pea salad
Prep: Make hummus

Friday - In which I am catering a dessert reception in the evening and need to be able to feed myself quickly amidst prep work.
B: Egg yolk and potato scramble cooked in lots of bacon fat
L: Mediterranean feast (baba ganouj, hummus, dolmas)
D: Burger patties with rice and sauteed veggies
Prep: Soak rice AM, soak oats for porridge

Saturday - In which family is in town, and all plans are suspect
B: porridge
L: scramble
D: out?
Prep: Marinate roast

B: Pancakes
L: Leftovers
D: Roast Beef stew, sauerkraut

This post is a part of Menu Plan Monday, hosted by OrgJunkie.  Do you know what you're cooking this week?

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Salmon Dinners and Chocolate Cream Pots

In a very sad turn (and bump) of events, I sent my lap top crashing to our tiled floor last night.  Everything seemed fine, until I tried to shut it down.  It had issues, and I manually forced it.  This morning, there was no contact with the hard drive.

I called several places, only to learn that the only thing SURE to kill a hard drive is a fall (even of only a foot) onto a tile floor.  One guy even told me that was actually how he ensured that hard drives were wiped when he recycles old notebooks.

While that may seem to having nothing to do with my kitchen, that hard drive had some truly lovely photos awaiting you for today's Tuesday Twister.

There was oriental salmon a top buttered and steamed asparagus one night.

There was leftover salmon, coconut soup the next night (with a picture I actually have because I shared it with Facebook - along with the recipe)

On a creative whim, I saved about 5 ounces of the heavy coconut cream from the coconut milk and decided to do something desserty with it.  We ended up with banana-coconut chocolate cream pots (which, yes, I should probably have made with carob)

All of the above were new recipes, and simply delicious (am I the only one that wants to spell that with a "sh").  I wish I had pictures for you as well.  Please believe that I was thinking of you.

To make up for it, here is an attempt at capturing my recipe for the cream pots (which I will figure out how to adjust for carob soon)

Banana Coconut Chocolate Cream Pots

Makes 4

5ish ounces of thick coconut cream, skimmed from a can of whole coconut milk
1 very soft banana
2 ounces unsweetened baking chocolate (I used Dagoba)
2-3 Tbsp raw honey
1 1/2 cups whipping cream
dash of vanilla extract and maple syrup

Add coconut cream and banana to food processor and blend well (or mix well by hand with a fork until smooth). 
Then, place bowl over a sauce pan with a small amount of water. 
Place chocolate and honey in the bowl and bring water to a simmer,  Slowly melt the chocolate into the honey. 
When completely combined, let cool slightly, then spatula mixture into food processor with the banana-coconut cream mixture, and blend until well combined (this might require using the spatula on the sides and mixing again.  If working by hand, simply mix together until smooth)
Then, place whipping cream, vanilla and maple syrup in a bowl, and beat until thick.
Add chocolate mixture to whipped cream gently folding until well combined.
Place in 4 ramekin pots, and enjoy!

(This could easily be made ahead of time and served chilled)

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Clams, Salsa, and Chicken Feet!

I have never eaten clams before (not even chowder), but they were wild caught and looked interesting.  I bought 4.  Anyone who regularly eats clams, probably thinks me silly, buying 4 clams for a full family dinner.  I wasn't sure they would go over well.  I decided to make my own clam chowder, only to discover the recipe I found called for about 14 clams.  Mine did not have 14, but was chowder and it contained clams.  My children enjoyed watching the clams pop open when steamed, and have added the shells to their "nature" basket.

Fermenting salsa.  I almost didn't buy the non-seasonal tomatoes, because they always disappoint me, but we have several Latin American themed meals coming up, and it just seemed like something we might need.  The colors were a good reminder that the growing season IS upon us.  I am thinking about CSA's, are you?

Since we moved back down to Eugene, I no longer have a good source of chicken feet.  However, the farm where we get our real milk and pastured eggs DO kill some chickens from time to time, and I have requested that when they do, they freeze the feet for me.   This means I have to prepare them myself (throw in boiling water for a little bit, pull out, and peel, you could also clip their nails off, but I don't).  Right now, this foot (and several others...though not an even number....hmm?) is simmering in a chicken broth to be the labor drink for a friend's impending labor.  Nothing says let's get ready for a new baby like peeling chicken feet.

Also, my husband was supposed to have a picture from his guys weekend of what they ate for dinner, something about rare steak, butter sauteed mushrooms over french-ed beans, and buttery scallops.  I was so jealous, and all the other guys were worried their wives would be upset to know they ate such "bad" food.  My husband was adamant that I would have been proud (and did I mention, jealous!)

What was twisting in your kitchen this past week? Share it on Tuesday Twister at GNOWFGLINS

Monday, March 8, 2010

Menu Plan Monday 3/8/10

B: Bacon and Eggs
L: Yogurt with raw honey and fresh strawberries
D: Filets of Sole with cream sauce, crocked red potatoes, sauerkraut (though spring is coming, and I can almost taste the seasonal lettuces!)
Dessert: Black bean brownies and whipped cream!
Prep: Feed Sourdough mother, Prepare chicken feet and make broth for a friend's labor and postpartum meal care, grind sprouted wheat berries, make fermented salsa, soak quinoa PM, culture creme fraiche

B: Sprouted, cinnamon-raisin, French toast with 100% pure maple syrup
L: Yogurt with raw honey and sliced strawberries
D: Parmesan, bacon, onion, and herbed cream cheese quiche with sauteed spinach on the side
Prep: Make quiche dough AM (with my own rendered lard! and experimenting with sprouted soft wheat flour), feed sourdough mother, finish chicken broth, make sprouted bread, defrost ground lamb, tend sprouting quinoa

Wednesday (in which dinner must be simple as we have violin lessons in the afternoon)
B: Eggs and heavily-buttered, sprouted toast
L: Left over quiche
D: Spiced lamb with onions, carrots, on top of cooked, sprouted quinoa with a side of sauerkraut
Prep: Feed sourdough mother, defrost beef roast, soak oats with 1tbsp freshly ground wheat, soak chickpeas, start new batch of Kombucha

B: Oatmeal porridge
L: Eggs and heavily-buttered, sprouted toast
D: Chicken enchilada's with tomatillo sauce, soaked rice, homemade re-fried beans, cortido, creme fraiche and fermented salsa
Prep: Soak rice AM, Feed sourdough mother, marinate beef roast in buttermilk, soak wheat berries, cook lemon and orange for marmalade cake, defrost liver, beef, and heart, cook chickpeas

B: Herbed cream cheese omelets
L: Left over enchiladas (if there are any) or yogurt and strawberries
D: Meatloaf (Meat = ground beef, liver, and heart), Carrot and chickpea salad
Dessert: Adapted Marmalade Cake (sprouted flour, sucanat, etc)
Prep: Make sourdough, Feed mother, soak oats with 1tbsp freshly ground wheat

Saturday (in which my mother is in town, and my husband and I get a dinner date for our 6th anniversary)
Brunch: Bacon, Poached eggs, Bearnaise sauce
D: We're out for dinner! 
Prep: Bake sourdough, feed sourdough,

Sunday (in which we come home to the same old simple crocked dinner after church every week)
Brunch: Soaked Pancakes with 100% pure maple syrup
D: Roast beef with carrots, onions, and potatoes
Prep: Feed sourdough mother

Of course, there are snacks of apples, bananas (yes, we're back on bananas, they're just so good), oranges, and cheese.

There is also much drinking of raw milk and much sipping of Kombucha.

There may also be cookie making and who knows what else that might strike my fancy during the week.

What are you eating this week?  For more inspiration, visit menu-plan mondays at

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Menu Plan - not so Monday

A little late this week, but better late than never!

B: Eggs and heavily buttered toast =)
L: Leftover vegetable soup
D: Clam chowder (I'll probably alter this recipe)
Prep: Soak beans AM, soak oats PM, Make Latin American & regular Sauerkraut, Start new sourdough mother, defrost roast, soak wheat berries AM, tend wheat berries PM

B: Oatmeal porridge (soaked with a tbsp fresh ground wheat for added phytase - stay tuned for a post on Phytates)
L: Egg salad sandwich
D: Roast Chicken
Prep: Feed sourdough, cook beans all day, marinate roast, tend sprouting wheat berries

B: Scrambled eggs
L: Yogurt with raisins
D: Dinner with friends (Mexican?  I'll contribute re-fried beans, Latin American sauerkraut, and chismole)
Prep: re-fry beans AM, soak flour for pancakes, feed sourdough, dehydrate wheat berries

Brunch: Pancakes!
D: Spinach and bacon Quiche with Parmesan
Prep: feed sourdough, grind flour & make English muffins

Brunch: Poached eggs and Bearnaise sauce over sprouted English muffins
D: Roast with potatoes, carrots, sauerkraut
Prep: feed sourdough, start roast AM

What's on your menu this week?  Visit Menu Plan Monday for more inspiration

Tuesday Twister - Chocolate chips, Sprouted Bread, and Other Bloggers

With sick kids and a job hunting husband, I needed chocolate this week.   I substituted cacao powder for carob in this recipe, and ta-da!  I have a good supply of chips in the refrigerator (perhaps as once life gets less hectic around here I can shift back to carob)

I finally got around to using all of my homemade sprouted flour to make the sprouted bread recipe Jenny shared on her blog Nourished Kitchen. Yum! I suggest cooking it 5 minutes longer, and/or leaving it to cool in the pan.

Sniffles in the house also means I made a large batch of Nourishing Traditions macaroons.  This is my favorite way to get immune helping coconut into all of our bodies when we confront illness.

This didn't happen in MY kitchen, but I was blessed to be able to attend a fat rendering party with my local chapter of the Weston A Price Foundation and meet Wardeh in person!  She was just as sweet as I imagined she would be. (from left to right, my daughter Penelope, myself, and Wardeh)
Also with us at the fat rendering event was my in-real-life friend, Sarah, who has started her own blog to capture all that she is learning about real food. (Sarah seen here stirring chopped fat...I think beef, but we had beef, lamb, and pork going, so I can't be too sure).

Wardeh also posted about this event with more detailed pictures of the rendering, check it out!

What about you?  What was twisting in your kitchen this week?  This post is a part of Tuesday Twister hosted by GNOWFGLINS (Wardeh, seen above)

Thursday, February 25, 2010

How To Sprout Your Own Grains

Sprouting your grains is quite easy, especially if it becomes part of your routine.  Sprouting neutralizes enzyme-inhibitors and makes your grains more digestible.   While I still recommend sourdough as the most nutrient-dense of breads, sprouted flour is a good alternative if you want a healthy bread fast (on this note, I no longer recommend all versions of Ezekiel 4:9 bread as most varieties use sprouted soy beans, here is more on avoiding soy).  Sprouted flour is also wonderful for treats when soaking flour makes the flavor and consistency too far from the light cookie experience you are hoping for (like real milk's favorite cookie).  Next on my list is to try a sprouted sourdough rye.  Has anyone already tried this?  If I work it out, I'll be sure to let you know.

Step One: Fill jar 1/3 full with choice of grain (this also applies to raw seeds, nuts, beans, legumes, etc). Fill to about twice the height with filtered water.  Soak overnight (7-12 hours).


 Step Two: Cap with sprouting lid (these should be relatively inexpensive, though in a pinch I have used cheese cloth, plastic mesh from fruit bags, and handkerchiefs)

Step Three: Rinse and drain 2-3 times a day, for 2-3 days.  Sprouts are ready with they have reached about 1/4 inch long.
Step Four: Depending on what you are planning to do with your sprouts, move them to refrigerated storage (say if they are beans or lentils and you plan on adding them to salads or stir-frys), or, in the case of making sprouted flour, dehydrate the sprouted grains.  I find these dry fairly quickly.
Step Five: Grind into flour!  I do this with my coffee grinder as we do not yet have a grain mill.  Now you have Bulgar flour which you can substitute in most recipes 1-to-1 for refined flour.  It has a slightly grainier texture, but I have yet to hear anyone complain when it comes to sprouted grain cookies.

This post is a part of Fight Back Friday's hosted by Food Renegade.  Fight back by making it yourself!

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Real Food Trade: Quinoa instead of Cous Cous

I remember my disappointment when I first learned, years ago, that cous cous was actually pasta rather than some lovely ancient grain.  I was naive.  When I rejected refined foods years ago, that meant giving up cous cous, which I had often relied on for a quick side course that was far easier to prepare than rice.

Recently, I did discover the actual ancient grain quinoa.  I had ordered some to try, in bulk, from Azure Standard.  I also had several friends who brought quinoa dishes to share while we were recovering from the birth of our third child.  Of course, I thought they were bringing this new-fangled thing called "KEEN-wah".  I would not like to admit how recently I discovered that the new-fangled "KEEN-wah" and my lovely ancient "Kwuh-NO-ah" were one and the same.  Perhaps I am not the only one who has been confused by this?

The important thing to glean from this Quinoa (KEEN-wah) experience is this:  I now have a cous cous replacement!   The other night my husband brought home some lovely rib eye steak.  I needed something simple to go along side it and I had just finished sprouting some quinoa that I was not sure how I would use.  I decided to prepare it much like I used to do with cous cous.  Namely, I brought a cup of water to boil, added 1 cup fresh sprouted quinoa (I had placed the finished sprouts in the refrigerator rather than dehydrating them), removed from heat, and let sit 5-10 minutes until the quinoa had cooked.  Afterward, I added butter, sea salt, pepper, and herbs to taste.  When the steak was done it was placed a top the quinoa along with some drippings.


This post is a part of Real Food Wednesday's hosted by Kelly The Kitchen Kop and Cheeseslave

Tuesday Twister - English Muffins, Brownies, and Eggs Benedict

Last week we discovered that a friend's recipe for English Muffins worked just fine with a trade for homemade sprouted flour and honey rather than sugar.

I was also inspired to try another friend's recipe for black bean brownies.  Yes, brownies made with black beans.  I first served them with whipped cream (seen left with husband's morning latte - yes, the also make a decent morning treat).  I waited until my husband had finished his second helping before informing him they were made with black beans.  I substituted sprouted flour for the ground almonds, Sucanat for the florida crystals, doubled the cocoa powder as I didn't have chocolate chips, and used baking soda rather than powder  - but WOW were they delicious.

Above mentioned English muffins were perfect with nitrate-free bacon, Bearnaise sauce, spinach and a poached egg for a Sunday brunch.  Yum.

This post is a part of Tuesday Twister hosted by GNOWFGLINS 

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Menu Plan Monday


B: Oatmeal porridge
L:  Fried eggs and sourdough
D: Roast, yams, steamed broccoli, sauerkraut
To Do: Feed sourdough mother

B: Yogurt with raisins
L: At friends'
D: Quiche & soup
To Do: Feed sourdough mother, make quiche dough

B: Scrambled eggs, sourdough,
L: Left-over soup and quiche,
D: Curried lentils over coconut rice, carrots vichi
To Do: soak rice in the AM, feed sourdough, start beef broth (third time's the charm?)

B: Fried Eggs,
L: Grilled cheese sourdough, carrots
D: Mystery Meat Loaf (will I chop up some of the beef heart, or just stick with hidden liver?), sauerkraut
Dessert: Berry Pie with Cream
To Do: Feed sourdough, simmer beef broth

B: Yogurt with raisins
L: Egg salad sandwiches, carrots
D: Roast Chicken, potatoes, onion compote
To Do: Feed sourdough, soak flour for pancakes, simmer beef broth

Brunch: Pancakes
D: Left-overs
To Do: Make sourdough, finish beef broth, make yogurt

Brunch: Poached eggs over hashed browns

D: All-day beef stew
To Do: Feed sourdough

As usual we are also drinking delicious raw milk and home-brewed Kombucha.

What are you eating this week?  For more inspiration, visit Menu Plan Monday by Organizing Junkie

Monday, February 8, 2010

Menu Plan Monday

Last week my bone broth never got started (my current kitchen is very limited, and difficult to manage a burner for broth to simply simmer away for days).  Nevertheless, I am going to attempt it again this week.  Last week was also our first week of Suzuki violin, which made me realize Wednesday meals need to be cooking before we leave.  This week I have adjusted.  Also, the eggs Benedict brunch was SO very delicious, I have to make that again this week.

B: Sourdough rye with ample cultured butter, Banana,
L: Yogurt with raisins, fried eggs
D: Chicken burritos, Latin American sauerkraut,
Prep: Start beef bone broth, feed sourdough mother, soak wheat berries PM, marinate stew meat, soak flour for pizza

B: Scrambled eggs, banana,
L: Grilled cheese on sourdough, sauerkraut, apples, carrots,
D: Sourdough pizza,
Prep: Simmer beef bone broth, Make sourdough, tend sprouting wheat berries, soak flour for pancakes
B: Soured pancakes with real maple syrup
L: Egg salad sandwich, carrot, apple
D: Pot-roasted stew served with rice and sauerkraut,
Prep: Finish beef bone broth, feed sourdough mother, dehydrate sprouted wheat berries, defrost pot roast, soak oats with a small amount of freshly ground wheat (for phytase to help neutralize the phytates in the oats), soak lentils, Make quiche dough

B: Oatmeal porridge with cinnamon and raisins,
L: Quiche,
D: Spiced (cumin and oregano) ground beef and liver, sauteed spinach, Roman Lentil Soup
Prep: Feed sourdough mother, ground sprouted wheat berries, soak flour for sourdough pizza, marinate pot roast in buttermilk

B: Fried Eggs and Bacon
L: Quiche and Roman Lentil Soup
D: Roast chicken with sauce, mashed yams, sauteed spinach
Prep: Feed sourdough mother, grind sprouted flour,

B: Cream cheese omelets,
L: Chicken sandwiches, cheese sticks, apple slices,
D: Left-overs from the week,
Prep: Feed sourdough, make sprouted English muffins

Brunch: Poached eggs with Bearnaise sauce on sprouted English muffins with bacon and steamed greens,
Snack: Cheese and apples, sourdough with butter,
D: Beef pot roast with potatoes and carrots,
Prep: Feed sourdough mother,

And, as always, we are drinking ample real milk and brewing Kombucha

What are you eating this week?  For inspiration, or to join us, visit Menu Plan Monday this week!

Monday, February 1, 2010

Menu Plan Monday

Last week, shortly after posting my menu plan, I read a post from Ann Marie at Cheeseslave about How To Cure Tooth Decay.  At first I was completely discouraged, but then she kindly reminded all of us quick-to-comment, discouraged women, that this was advice for people battling tooth decay.

However, it also made me realize that I have settled into the easy routine of porridge every morning.  Porridge every morning was a wonderfully healthful change from extruded, sugared, cold-cereal grains every morning when I began my food revolution 3 1/2 years ago, but I've gotten lazy and oats are quite inexpensive.  Yet, we do not eat enough calcium rich food to be eating the amount of grains that we have been.  My breakfast and lunch plans need help.  We're almost at the end of our peanut butter right now and I do not see myself buying it again for a long, long time.  Who among us, born in the 70's on, does not have tooth decay tendencies? 

With that in mind, here is this Mondays menu plan (and truly, last weeks plan for breakfast and lunch was mainly scrapped).

B: Scrambled eggs, sourdough rye with ample butter, raw milk
L: Roast beef sandwiches, carrots, apples, raw milk
D: Roast chicken, potatoes "The Way", sauerkraut, sauteed spinach
Prep: Start beef bone broth, feed sourdough mother, make Latin American sauerkraut

B: Yogurt with raisins, banana, raw milk
L: Grilled cheese on sourdough, sauerkraut, apples, carrots, raw milk
D: Shrimp scampi over rice
Prep: Simmer beef bone broth, feed sourdough mother, soak rice early AM, soak wheat berries PM, defrost ground beef and liver for meatloaf

B: Soured pancakes, raw milk
L: Chicken salad sandwich, raw milk
D: Burritos with soaked rice and beans, Latin American sauerkraut, creme fraiche
Prep: Finish beef bone broth, feed sourdough mother, tend sprouting wheat berries, soak lentil, defrost pot roast

B: Fried eggs, bacon, raw milk
L: Egg salad sandwiches, raw milk
D: Meatloaf (with hidden liver), roasted beets, sauerkraut, roman lentil soup
Prep: Feed sourdough mother, dehydrate sprouted wheat berries, soak flour for sourdough pizza, marinate pot roast in buttermilk

B: Sourdough french toast, raw milk
L: BLT's, cheese sticks, apple slices, raw milk
D: Sourdough pizza,
Prep: Feed sourdough mother, grind sprouted flour, soak oats

B: Cream cheese omelets, raw milk
L: Oatmeal porridge, raw milk
D: Left-overs from the week, raw milk
Prep: Make sourdough, make sprouted English muffins

Brunch: Poached eggs with Bearnaise sauce on sprouted English muffins, bacon, raw milk
Snack: Cheese and apples, sourdough with butter, raw milk
D: Beef roast with potatoes and carrots, raw milk
Prep: Feed sourdough mother,

What are you eating this week?  For inspiration, or to join us, visit Menu Plan Monday this week!

Friday, January 29, 2010

28-Day Real Food Challenge

Last year I did a series on bite-sized steps to a nutrient dense diet.  I hope that it provided simple ways to change and form small habits that nourished you and your families.  

This year I have not found a theme to propel me quite yet, but Jenny at The Nourished Kitchen is doing a 28-Day Real Food Challenge for the entire month of February.   Check out her site for more information and sign up!  Please let me know if you do so that I can make sure to look for you during the event.

Do you have real food questions?  Feel free to contact me with them and I would be happy to do some research and get back to you.  Mariannescrivner (at) gmail (dot) com

Monday, January 25, 2010

Menu Plan Monday!

It's been a while, but we've moved and are somewhat settled, so it's back to menu planning!


B: Oatmeal porridge (with cinnamon, butter, and raisins), raw milk
L: Snack board (apple slices, cheese, buttered bread, crispy hazelnuts), raw milk
D: Steak, spiced and sprouted quinoa, carrot salad, raw milk
To Do: Soak oats for porridge, defrost liver, feed sourdough mother, make cookie dough

B: Oatmeal porridge as usual, raw milk
L: PB&Honey, carrots, apple, raw milk
D: Quiche, salad, squash soup, raw milk
To Do: Soak oats for porridge, marinate roast in buttermilk and liver in lemon juice, bake cookies, grind flour, bake bread, soak garbanzo beans, make quiche & pie dough, feed sourdough, soak wheat berries, start a new batch of beet kvass

B: Oatmeal porridge as usual, raw milk
L: Leftover quiche, carrots, apples, raw milk
D: Liver & onions, sauteed spinach, leftover squash soup, raw milk
Dessert: Cranberry pear pie with whipped cream
To Do: Feed sourdough, soak oats for porridge, make sauerkraut, cook garbanzo beans, make sprouted flat bread, tend sprouting wheat berries, defrost ground lamb

B: Oatmeal porridge as usual, raw milk
L: PB&Honey, apples, cheese, raw milk
D: Baba ganouj, hummus, sprouted flat bread, olives, lamb kebabs, raw milk
To Do: Make sourdough, soak oats for porridge, tend sprouting wheat berries

B: Oatmeal porridge as usual, raw milk
L: PB&Honey, Carrots, Raw milk,
D: Dinner at friends'
To Do: Feed sourdough, soak flour for pancakes,dehydrate wheat sprouts

B: Soured pancakes, bananas, cream, raw milk
L: Snack board, raw milk
D: Roast with potatoes and carrots, salad, sauteed Brussels sprouts, raw milk
To Do: Feed sourdough mother

B: Bacon and eggs, raw milk,
L: Roast sandwiches, raw milk
D: Leftovers from week, raw milk
To Do: Soak oats for porridge, feed sourdough mother

What about you?  Do you know what you're eating this week? For more inspiration, visit the carnival

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Raw Milk's Filling Oreo

It is hard to be a raw milk lover who also occasionally craves things like Newman's O's (the organic, tastier version of an Oreo) because there really is something about milk's favorite cookie. I would not like to admit that my husband recently brought home a package that disappeared less than 24 hours later. There are 4 of us who have teeth, so it was not all me, but it did convict me that I needed to come up with a substitute so that my husband does not bring home such atrocities to our normal diet again.

After eating FAR too many Newman's O's FAR too quickly, I read the packaging to see just how bad it was. The package marketed their unusual choice of fat - organic palm fruit oil - which they state "Is lower in saturated fat than butter and has no cholesterol" (which they thought was a good thing). This was my "aha!" as to why I devoured SO MANY. They were not filling. The body registers fullness based on nutrient and fat content. A cookie should be rich, so that you do not eat eight and then call upon massive will power to stop! I decided I would make our own oreo's - and they would have butter!

Without further ado, here is my recipe (containing 3/4 pound of butter) (I ate two, with a glass of raw milk and was well satisfied):

Raw Milk's Favorite Cookie

Makes: 25-40 cookies depending on size.

The Cookie

  • 1 1/4 cup sprouted flour
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder (you could also use carob powder, but then add 1 tbsp chocolate extract with the egg and butter)
  • 1 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt
  • 1 cup Rapadura (or sucanant)
  • 1/2 cup plus 2 tbsp butter, room temperature
  • 1 large pastured egg
  1. In a medium-sized bowl, mix the sprouted flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, sea salt, and Rapadura.
  2. Beat in the butter and the egg. Continue mixing until dough comes together in a mass.
  3. Take rounded teaspoons of batter and place on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet approximately 2 inches apart.
  4. From here you have options. You could use moistened hands and slightly flatten the dough. I used our hand tamper for the espresso machine and placed another buttered sheet of parchment paper (or a free butter wrapper, since there were plenty about) on top of the cookie and gently smooshed them flat. This also allowed me to make them all approximately the same size (judging by the tamper).  A small glass with a flat bottom would work for this as well.
  5. Bake for 9 minutes at 375 F. Set on a rack to cool.

The Filling

  • 7/8 cup (14 tbsp) room-temperature butter
  • 1 cup arrowroot powder
  • 1 cup raw honey
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract (or for other flavors, try 1 tsp vanilla plus 1 tsp peppermint, chocolate, hazelnut, or orange, etc.)
  1. Place honey and arrowroot powder in a medium bowl and slowly mix together. When well blended, add butter and mix with an electric mixer until smooth. Then blend in extract.
  2. To make a cookie, add dollops of cream into the center of a cookie. Place a similarly sized cookie on top of the cream. Lightly twist and press to work the filling evenly to the outsides of the cookie. Continue this process until all the cookies have been sandwiched with cream. (note: the filling will set up better when chilled - if you can wait for it)
  3. Enjoy!
  4. Store extra in refrigerator or freezer (Be sure to save some to enjoy with homemade raw ice cream!)

This post is a part of Fight Back Fridays hosted by Food Renegade

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Spinach & Portabella Fettuccine

Here is a lovely local and seasonal recipe we created tonight.

Spinach & Portabella Fettuccine with Spinach Salad on the side

Time: 30 minutes
Serves: 2 (+ 2 small children)

Pasta Ingredients:
4 Tbsp butter + more as you feel inspired
1 Large leek chopped
1-2 Cloves garlic chopped or minced
1/2 Bunch spinach, washed, trimmed, coarsely chopped
2 Portabella mushrooms, sliced and coarsely chopped
Sea Salt
1-2 Tbsp Balsamic vinegar
Sprouted fettuccine (or other preferred noodle) (we use a small quantity per topping)

Salad Ingredients:
1/2 Bunch spinach, washed, and trimmed
1 Carrot thinly chopped
Handful crispy walnuts (soaked, and raw roasted according to the recipe in NT)
Small handful cranberries
Chevre (soft goat cheese)
Balsamic & extra virgin olive oil
Sea Salt and pepper to taste

Melt butter in saute pan over medium heat, add leek and let soften.
Add garlic, let saute one minute.
Add spinach and saute until just wilted
Add Portabella mushrooms and saute until soft
Season with sea salt to taste and toss.
Drizzle with balsamic vinegar, toss, and set aside, off heat, to amalgamate.
Bring water to boil and prepare pasta according to instructions.
While waiting prepare salad by tossing ingredients together
Toss with spinach and mushroom "sauce" and dust with Parmesan


This post is a part of Real Food Wednesdays hosted by Cheeseslave and Kelly The Kitchen Kop

Local portabella mushrooms - $3.45
Local, dried, raw cranberries - $.80
Local, organic, leek - $1.10
Local, organic, spinach - $3.00
Sprouted fettuccine - $1.00
Butter and seasonings - $.80
Local walnuts - $.10
Chevre - $1.00
Total - $11.25 - Which fed 2 adults and 2 children
(I feel compelled to note that this seems over-priced to me. We enjoyed a gift certificate to a local foods program, and have thoroughly enjoyed it, however, I think the prices are quite high compared to my usual sources)

Saturday, January 9, 2010


Sorry for the blog silence! We are in the middle of moving. Soon I will have reports on what's twisting in my new, temporary, TINY kitchen. I will not be thwarted.

Until then, let me know what your food resolutions are for the new year? I think I'll be joining Alex in trying to only eat meat of known origin (MOKO), as well as documenting every dollar we spend on food.

Last year I enjoyed doing the series on bite-sized steps to a nutrient dense diet. What would you like from Prepare To Eat in 2010? Feel free to let me know, or contact me by email at Mariannescrivner (at) gmail (dot) com.

Happy New Year!


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