PB + Jam French Toast

pb-jam-recipe.jpg

It’s a new season in our home in so many ways. The weather is cooling off, we are back in a daily groove for a new school year, and my son is venturing on his own in the kitchen! He is coming into his own independence, and he is expressing it through making some of his own meals. The best part is his initiative to do it on his own, albeit with a little help here and there.

Today, I made a quick and simple raspberry jam to go with breakfast, instead of the usual maple syrup. I’m trying to cut back on sugar for everyone. My little guy wanted French toast with a creative twist. So, he made a peanut butter sandwich and then cut it up into strips to create French toast “sticks”. There’s just something fun about eating a meal without utensils for kids!

Here’s the recipe for both the jam and French toast sticks.

Jam Ingredients:

1 cup organic raspberries

2 Tbs filtered water

1 Tbs raw honey

1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract

Splash of lemon juice

Preparation:

Add raspberries and water to a small sauce pan and cook on medium-high until the berries start to boil. Cook for a few more minutes and stir occasionally, so the berries don’t burn or stick to the bottom of the sauce pan. Add the honey, vanilla, and lemon juice and then mix well. This is when your kitchen starts smelling divine! Let it cook a couple of more minutes and then set aside.

French Toast Ingredients:

2 slices organic whole grain bread (we prefer gluten-free bread)

1 free-range organic egg

1/4 cup plant-based milk

1-2 Tbs organic peanut butter (my guy lives extra peanut butter)

1 tsp pure vanilla extract

2 dashes ground cinnamon

1 dash ground nutmeg

1/2 Tbs organic coconut oil

Preparation:

Add the egg, milk, vanilla and spices in a mixing bowl and whisk together. Preheat a medium-sized pan on medium-high and then add the coconut oil to the pan. Meanwhile, spread the peanut butter on the two pieces of bread to make a sandwich, and then cut into four strips. Dip the sticks into the egg mixture and place into the pan. Cook on each side for 2-3 minutes or until golden brown. I also helped him cook the strips on all four sides. It seems like a bit more work, but they come out really good!

Spoon a few tablespoons of the berry jam into a little container for dipping, or just spread it over the French toast and serve! My son gobbled this up and requested more for tomorrow!

 

 

 

 

 

BERRY BEETIFUL SMOOTHIE

Okay, I could not resist this pun! I recently made a delicious berry + beet juice and the inspiration was from a drink I grabbed from Whole Foods’ juice bar the other day. Beets help purify your liver and blood. And since I have been feeling a bit stagnant, I thought beets would be a good base for a detox juice. These ruby beauties contain vitamins A + C, B6, and folate, not to mention minerals such as potassium, magnesium, manganese and calcium.  Beets are high in sugar. One cup is about 9 grams of sugar, so use them in moderation. I only used a 1/4 cup of my beet juice blend for my smoothie and then diluted it with coconut water. The greens really help offset the sugar content.

And don’t forget to use the leaves of the beet root! I recently discovered that beet greens have more iron than spinach! So don’t discard the leaves when juicing! This beauty elixir was a labor of love since there is a two-step process. First, I made the beet juice and then I used some of it for my smoothie. Use organic when possible! I found the ginger and lemon or lime, help cut the earthy flavor of beets!

Beet Juice Ingredients + Instructions: (Juice these ingredients in a juicer)

2 organic beets, washed and cut into quarters

leaves of the beets

1 organic Granny Smith apple, quartered

1 organic cucumber, cut off ends

1 organic zucchini, cut off ends

1 head of organic romaine lettuce, washed + cut off ends  (I used the prepared one in the 3-pack)

1 organic lemon or lime

1-2  inches of fresh ginger

Pour into a glass jar and seal tightly with a lid. (This helps keep it fresh, longer.)

Smoothie Ingredients:

1/4 cup of the homemade beet juice

1/4 cup coconut water (add more if needed to blend mixture)

1/2 cup organic blueberries

1/2 cup organic strawberries, cut off stems

1/2 frozen banana, cut into large chunks (omit if sugar is an issue)

**If your berries aren’t frozen, you may want to add a little ice for a nice smoothie consistency.

Blend until smooth, in a high-powered blender like a Blendtec.

I add a drop of doTERRA lime essential oil to my smoothie. It really adds a deeper citrus flavor and compliments the beet and ginger flavors!

Enjoy!

 

WATERMELON + LIME POPSICLES

Watermelon Popsickles

July is National Watermelon Month and I have been wanting to make these for a while, so this is an opportune time for a nice, juicy popsicle! I had a sweet, ripe watermelon and wanted to add a little zing to it, so I added a fresh lime. You could also add a couple drops of lime essential oil to really bring out the lime flavor!

Watermelon doesn’t just taste good, it also has some great health benefits! This delicious fruit contains lycopene, a powerful antioxidant. It’s about 92 percent water, so it is a great way to stay hydrated. Watermelon also contains Vitamins A, B6 and C, magnesium and potassium. The lime helps digestion, blood sugar levels, constipation and even heart disease!

This was an easy treat to make so you shouldn’t spend too much time in the kitchen. And it’s kid-approved so it makes a great healthful treat.

Ingredients:

4 cups of ripe watermelon

1 lime

Dash of sea salt

2 drops of lime essential oil (optional)

Preparation:

Add all of the ingredients into a blender and puree. Pour into the popsicle containers and freeze overnight. Enjoy this cool, refreshing treat the next day!

 

GARAM MASALA BEEF + VEGETABLE BOWL

Do you ever get in a cooking “funk” and get bored with your regular weekly cooking ideas? Well, this recipe was a result of overcoming my cooking doldrums, and it seemed to go over quite well with the family! I wanted a different flavor than just my usual garlic and onions, so why not Indian flavors? My first Indian dish experience was in DC with my husband, when we were first dating. The fragrant spices, with a hint of heat, cooled down with rich, creamy coconut milk. Ahhhhh!!!!

I didn’t use coconut milk in this dish. I didn’t want a creamy sauce with the beef. This dish is a great high protein-low carb meal and even GAPS-friendly. I will be making this recipe again!

 

Ingredients:

1 1/2 lbs ground beef

2 cups green beans, trimmed

1 large sweet onion, diced

1 container baby bella mushrooms, diced

3 large carrots, diced

1/2 cup bone broth

5 garlic cloves, minced

3/4 Tbs garam masala

2 tsp sea salt

1 1/2 tsp cumin

1/2 tsp turmeric

1 head of cauliflower, riced (I also get mine pre-cut at Trader Joe’s in the produce section)

Preparations:

In a large pan, saute onions on medium-high heat for a couple of minutes. Add beef and brown for a couple of minutes and then mix in garlic and spices. Let cook for about five minutes then add the green beans and cook for another 5 minutes. Next, add the mushrooms and bone broth and cook for about 3-5 minutes, until the mushrooms have cooked down. The last thing to add will be the riced cauliflower. The cauliflower takes on whatever flavors you have in your dish, so I like to mix it thoroughly. If your carrots and green beans are still a little too crunchy, just cook the mixture a little longer for your desired texture. I don’t like mushy vegetables, so these times worked well for me.

SIMPLE SUMMER PARFAITS

Summer is around the corner and the weather is confirming this with hot and humid days! I am finding myself choosing cooler foods and yoga as exercise to help endure this weather. I found an amazing yoga studio here in North Palm Beach called Power Yoga Tribe. The community is like family and the instructors/owners, Preston and Christen have some serious love and talent for yoga! Preston’s birthday was coming up and I love to cook for others, so I created a quick and easy summer parfait. I just used a cute little mason jar and layered my cultured yogurt recipe with fresh organic fruit. The cultured yogurt has an amazing taste compared to store-bought and it provides amazing benefits for your gut health.

You can store the parfaits in the fridge for several days but mine were gone the same day. This makes a quick and easy snack that even your kids will love! There are so many things you can do with yogurt in the summer. Keep checking back to see other great recipes I am creating for my family.

Ingredients:

1 cup cultured yogurt (you can use store-bought)

1 tsp raw honey or pure maple syrup

Dash of cinnamon

1 cup of blueberries, raspberries or diced strawberries (whatever you prefer!)

Preparation:

Add a heaping spoon of yogurt to the jar, enough to cover the bottom completely. Add choice of fruit, enough to cover the yogurt. Keep alternating yogurt and fruit until you fill the jar. I topped mine off with fruit for a visual effect. Cover tightly and store in the fridge.

Do you have any great ideas for yogurt? Please share and post to our community!

 

 

SAGE + BUTTERNUT SQUASH FRITTATA

Frittata

I wanted to explore some new breakfast recipes and butternut squash is a GAPS-friendly ingredient, so I incorporated it into a frittata. To make it fun, I spiralized the butternut squash. It also made it easier to spread it out evenly in the pan. Sage seems to compliment this winter squash well and the goat cheese really brings everything together. And of course bacon goes with anything and my husband requested it in the recipe.

We didn’t miss the crust since this dish had so many great flavors and it was quite satisfying. Carbs are one of my biggest weaknesses. So anytime I can make my tastebuds happy sans carbs, I feel I have conquered the craving monster!

Ingredients:

1/2 butternut squash (non-bulbous end), peeled and spiralized

6 pieces bacon (nitrate + msg-free)

6 eggs, beaten

3 oz goat cheese

2 cloves garlic, minced

6 sage leaves

1/4 tsp sage powder

Salt + pepper to taste

Preparation:

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Cut the bacon into small pieces and cook on medium-high until almost done in a medium-sized cast iron pan (or one you can put in the oven).

Next add the minced garlic and cook for about a minute.

Then add the squash and saute for about 3 minutes.

Add half of the goat cheese in tiny dollops over the mixture.

Mix in the sage powder, salt and pepper into the eggs and mix well then pour over squash mixture.

Add the remaining goat cheese over the mixture and place the sage leaves on top.

Bake for about 20 minutes or until golden on top.

 

CREAMY CAULIFLOWER + MEATBALL SOUP (GAPS-FRIENDLY)

This recipe is our family’s new favorite dish! I could make this every week and my guys would be happy. The combination of the meatballs and hearty veggies, can satisfy anyone. You really don’t miss the carbs. I used my homemade bone broth to make this dish really gut-healing and flavorful. I also added more water since you cook the meatballs in the soup and I wanted a large batch for leftovers. You can adjust the water to how much broth you prefer in your soup. Cooking the meatballs in the broth makes them moist and the veggies come out perfectly tender with a little crunch in the kale!

I pureed some of the cauliflower to add more depth to the broth. This recipe is adapted from a meatball recipe in the cookbook “The Heal Your Gut Cookbook“. If you are looking for great GAPS recipes, this is the book to have in your kitchen. I made a huge pot for leftovers. Cook once, eat twice!!!

Ingredients:

1 lb organic ground beef

1 lb ground pork (organic if possible)

2 eggs

1 qt homemade beef bone broth

3 cups filtered water

1 head cauliflower, chopped

1 bunch of kale (about 8-10 large leaves), chopped

4 carrots, peeled and chopped

1 8 oz container baby bella mushrooms, sliced

1 large sweet onion, sliced

5 cloves garlic, minced (divide in half)

2 tsp sea salt

2 tsp dried oregano

1 tsp dried basil

1 tsp ground pepper

Preparation:

Cut all of your vegetables before you begin this dish. You can even cut them the night before or earlier in the day to save time.

Add a little broth to a very large stock pot, just enough to saute half of your garlic. Cook garlic on medium-high for a couple of minutes until it becomes fragrant. Add the rest of the broth and turn up heat to bring broth to a boil.

In a large bowl, combine beef, pork, eggs, other half of minced garlic, all of the spices and mix well. Make about 1 inch meatballs and place on a tray. I use a small ice cream scoop to make my meatballs.

Once your broth is boiling, add the cauliflower and cook until fork-tender. Next, turn down heat to medium-high and puree half of your cauliflower. I use an immersion blender and just blend some of the cauliflower.

Add the meatballs one by one to the pot. Next add the carrots, onions, kale and mushrooms. Cook for about 20 minutes. Add more salt and pepper to taste. The broth and meatballs already have a lot of flavor, so we didn’t need to add more seasoning. Enjoy!