Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Mint Cocoa Bars with Chia seeds

I'm usually not a big fan of most protein/snack bars.  I just don't like the way they taste.  Most of the time they taste too sweet and too artificial with the exception of a few (Cy & I both like Kind Bars).  So when I saw the recipe for this Cocoa Bar in my CSA Box I was very curious to see how they would turn out with such few ingredients. And you know what? They were delicious!  It was just the right amount of sweetness with the flavor of natural mint chocolate chip - one of my favorites {for ice cream ;)} It's a perfect bite for when you just need a little pick me up.

Now that I know you can make your own tasty snack bars with no refined sugars, the possibilities are endless! My head is swimming with thoughts of coconut shreds, dried cherries, all different kinds of nuts, and on and on...
What flavors would you make?

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Zucchini Hash

A quick post today of another dish Cy & I made for the brunch last along with the Double Strawberry & Basil Tart - a Zucchini hash.
Less carbs than potatoes and can also work as a nice alternative to pancakes ;)

Best of all, it's simple to make.  Just grated zucchini, an egg, some garlic/ginger, and a little coconut flour.

Monday, May 13, 2013

{A Happy Mother's Day} Double Strawberry Basil Tart

I hope everyone had a nice Mother's day! As I become older and finding myself having to juggle more things, I realize more and more how amazing my Mom really is.  To successfully take care of her career, her home and the family is no small feat, and I can only hope to be as strong and productive some day.

 There are many amazing brunch places out here in Los Angeles, but Cy and I decided to cook brunch for my parents this year to show our appreciation - including this Double Strawberry & Basil tart that turned out amazingly well :) I made it because I really love the Double Blueberry tart recipe, and figured if it works for blueberries it must work for strawberries as well.

I made a strawberry & basil jam to spread on the bottom of the tart and simply topped it with fresh strawberries and basil - served with some vanilla creme fraiche, it's springtime in your mouth.

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Almond Chiffon Roll Cake w/ Sweet Potato Cream (Gluten-free)

I'm not sure what is going on with the weather out here in Los Angeles.  It's abnormally hot one day and raining the next! Despite the strange weather, I was able to come up with this recipe, desperate to use up my sweet potatoes from this previous post.   It's a traditional roll cake with some tweaks.  Instead of whip cream, I used pureed sweet potato to make a "cream".  This would be a perfectly healthy way to frost cupcakes, spread on bread, or even to eat just as it is :)

For the cake portion, I used almond flour to make it gluten-free.  I was worried that almond flour wouldn't be able to pull off that light and fluffy consistency of a chiffon cake, but it came out great!

sweet potato "cream" : I actually miscalculated and made it too liquidy but it was still good!
This cake was surprisingly easy and quick to make so I urge you to give it a try if you're looking for a relatively healthy dessert!  The recipe itself I left very loose so that there is lots of room to play with it if you'd like :)

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Black Quinoa Salad with Lemon Avocado & Pistachios

I had a huge bunch of beet greens that I wanted to use when I saw the recipe that came along with our CSA produce box, a Black Quinoa Salad with Lemon, Avocado and Pistachios by Deborah Madison and I immediately decided I would try out the recipe.  I know that lots of good things have been said about quinoa already, but it is an especially good carb for diabetics since it is digested very slowly in the body and won't spike your blood sugar.

I had never cooked with black quinoa before this so I never realized that black quinoa is much crunchier than other quinoa.  At first I thought maybe I misjudged the cooking time!  It makes for an interesting texture and the color adds aesthetic interest, but I think if I were to make this again, I'd mix the black quinoa with some of the other's just a little too crunchy for my personal taste.

However, the dish itself was beautiful and very easy to throw together.  I loved the dressing and it went perfectly well with all the herbs mixed into the salad.

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