Wednesday, April 30, 2008
The boys have been asking to bake cookies lately. We cook every day, but cookies are infrequent. SO, today, by popular request, we baked cookies. Peanut Butter Cookies. Goooood.
1 c. unsalted butter, room temp
1 c. creamy organic UN-sweetened peanut butter (or a raw nut butter like almond...)
1 c. brown sugar
1 c. sugar (I used raw sugar)
2 1/2 c all purpose flour (I used whole wheat pastry)
1/2 tsp finely ground sea salt
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
Cream together the butter, peanut butter and sugars. Then beat in the eggs.
In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, baking soda, salt and baking powder. Stir that into the batter. Mix well and then refrigerate for an hour or so.
Roll into 1-inch balls and place on a baking sheet. Flatten each ball with a fork - classic peanut butter cookie pattern. Add carob or organic chocolate chips on top before baking if you like that extra something...
Bake at 375ºF for about 10-11 minutes or so. Cool on a rack.
Wednesday, April 23, 2008
We usually bake a loaf of bread once a week or so. When we have time, we do the longer proofing sourdough or 24-hour type of bread. When we are busy, we rely on our bread machine. The boys love to help with bread - they measure, pour, scoop and peek as often as possible during the rising stages.
This recipe is a bread machine recipe that we made this week. It is a slightly nutty tasting sweet loaf, which is good as both a breakfast and a lunch bread. The boys love it toasted with fresh butter and honey, or at lunch as a panini with peanut butter and honey. My husband likes it toasted with nutella!
1 1/4 c room temp milk (you can also use water)
2 Tbsp butter, room temp
2 Tbsp honey (or agave)
1 tsp ground sea salt
3 cups of flour (I use whole wheat)
1/2 c rolled oats
1 Tbsp brown sugar
1 Tbsp ground flax
1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 Tbsp vital wheat gluten (you don't need this if you use white bread flour...only with whole wheat)
2 1/4 tsp active dry yeast
Add the ingredients to your bread machine in the order it recommends. Since I use whole wheat flour, I use the whole wheat setting, of course. It makes a 1 1/2 lb loaf. I like the medium crust setting.
I love espresso with fresh milk, but hemp milk is super tasty - and it has so many good things in it...omega-3's, omega 6's, magnesium, potassium, ascorbic acid, beta-carotene, calcium, fiber, protein, iron, phosphorous, riboflavin, niacin, thiamin, all of the essential amino acids (and more!)...so some days I have this with my espresso - yum!
Friday, April 18, 2008
"In celebration of Earth Day, more than 3,500 grocery stores in 35 states and 20 organic manufacturers are coming together for Go Organic! for Earth Day, a national campaign to increase consumer awareness of the benefits of organic food and agriculture."
Go Organic! for Earth Day has special events, promotions and coupon books which are available at the participating retailers throughout the whole month. Visit the website to find a participating store near you - www.OrganicEarthDay.org.
Sunday, April 13, 2008
Sunday is one of our baking days - usually bread and sometimes something sweet. Today I baked an orange pound cake - it is a great not-too-sweet cake, stores well, and the flavor actually gets better over the few days it takes the family to finish it.
orange pound cake
2 cups sifted pastry flour (I used whole wheat pastry flour)
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp finely ground sea salt
1 c granulated sugar (I used turbinado)
1 Tbsp grated orange zest
2 sticks (1/2 pound) unsalted butter, softened
4 large eggs - room temperature
2 tsp fresh orange juice
1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
optional: I like to sprinkle a few tablespoons of organic coconut flakes over the top before baking...tastes good with the orange, and makes the top nice and crunchy.
Preheat oven to 325°F with rack in the middle. Butter an 8.5- by 4.5 - inch loaf pan.
Sift together the dry - flour, baking powder, and salt.
Mix together sugar and orange zest with an electric mixer at low speed until zest is totally mixed into the sugar (smells wonderful). Add butter and beat at high speed until it pale and fluffy - 3-4 minutes or so.
Add the eggs 1 at a time at medium speed, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed, then add the juice and vanilla. At a low speed mix in the flour mixture until just incorporated.
Pour batter into the loaf pan and spread evenly (tap out air bubbles if needed). Sprinkle the coconut on top.
Bake until golden and a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean - about 1 hour - 1 hour 15 minutes.
Cool in the pan on a rack for about 30 minutes, then run a knife around edge of pan and pop out the pound cake and then let it cool completely on a rack.
You can serve as is, or add more sweetness as desired. Dust confectioner's sugar on the top, or make an orange glaze by mixing confectioner's sugar and orange juice. We like it as is - just right!
When using the rind or zest in a recipe, it is especially important to use organic fruit!
Wednesday, April 9, 2008
Every once in awhile, my husband will mention, that maybe, perhaps, it might be good to make some risotto - doesn't that sound good? And of course it does sound good. I don't often make it - with 2 small children standing at the stove stirring constantly for 20 minutes can be a challenge - but it is always so creamy and delicious. I like to make it with a few variations to give it some extra nutrition AND flavor.
juiced veggie risotto::
1 c arborio rice
1 c white wine
1 onion, diced
2 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
2 Tbsp coconut oil
1 c of juiced veggies: I juiced 2 carrots, 1 stalk of celery, and 1/2 of an orange pepper
3 c stock or broth (I used chicken stock)
sea salt & fresh ground pepper to taste
1/3 c grated good quality hard cheese (asiago, romano, parmesan)
1 Tbsp fresh butter
In a large pot, add the onion, garlic and coconut oil and let cook on high for a few minutes until onions are becoming translucent. Add in the arborio rice, turn down to medium heat, and stir for a minute to coat with oil. Add the white wine, and stir often until absorbed. Begin adding the stock and veggie juice, 1 cup at a time. Stir often, add more liquid only as the risotto needs it (don't dump it all in at once). After about 20 minutes all of the liquid should have been added - pull off the heat, and add the grated cheese and salt & pepper to taste. Right before serving, add in a little knob of fresh butter and stir - it will keep the sauce creamy and glistening.
Instead of using regular celtic sea salt, try using GoMasio. I like the Eden Foods brand with seaweed which contains whole sesame seeds, sea salt, and sea vegetables dulse, nori and kombu. You not only get the minerals from the sea salt, but also the benefits of the sea vegetables and sesame. It makes a good popcorn topping too. Yum.
Friday, April 4, 2008
Every spring I start to crave greens. Guacamole, tabouli, salad, peas, kale, spinach, broccoli, green juice - my body must need something in there!
Tonight I made a salad with mixed greens, peas, steamed kale, and tabouli. AHHHH. Definitely hit the green spot! Tabouli with salad is so good - tangy and crunchy with the crisp greens. So good.
1/2 c dry bulgur wheat (makes 1 cup after combining with liquid)
3 cups parsley, minced
a few sprigs of mint, minced (optional)
1/2 medium onion, minced
1 medium tomato, chopped
4 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
2 Tbsp fresh lemon juice (I like a little more)
2 cloves garlic, press or chopped finely
sea salt and pepper to taste
Place 1/2 cup bulgur and salt to taste in a bowl. Pour 1 cup hot water or broth over the bulgur, stir, and let sit for 15-20 minutes until liquid is absorbed. Squeeze or drain any remaining liquid before combining it with the other ingredients.
Add that to the rest of the ingredients, stir. It tastes best if you put it in the fridge and let it sit together for a few hours to mingle the flavors.
Parsley is loaded with goodness - it is an excellent source of vitamins K, A, & C, and is rich in folate.
Bulgur does not need to be cooked, just soaked to soften, because it has already been steamed, dried and cracked.
Posted by denise at 12:52 AM