Christmas is about a week away and I'm ready to step into "Christmas break" mode! It's funny--not having a final paper due or one more shift to work at the office right before Christmas still makes me giddy. And even though those schedules are no longer a reality for me, I still put myself on a Christmas break. Can you relate? If so, let's celebrate with some frozen peppermint bark...Merry Christmas to us!
Frozen Peppermint Bark
Makes 12 servings
For the base:
1/2 c unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 c melted (not hot) coconut oil
1/4 c honey
1/4 c stevia sweetened chocolate chips
1/4 t peppermint extract
For the topping:
2 T melted (not hot) coconut oil
1 T arrowroot powder
1 t honey
A few drops naturally derived red or green food coloring (optional)
6 honey sweetened peppermint patty candies, chopped (about 1/2 c)
Whisk cocoa powder and coconut oil for the base in a large bowl til smooth, then whisk in honey, peppermint extract, and chocolate chips. Spread onto a flat pan or container (about 8x8"). Freeze for 20 minutes. While base freezes, whisk together coconut oil, arrowroot powder, and honey for the topping in a clean bowl. Lightly color this glaze with food coloring, if desired. Once base has been in freezer for 20 minutes, drizzle glaze over the top, then sprinkle with chopped peppermint patties, gently pressing down so they stick. Freeze for another 20 minutes. Finally, remove peppermint bark from freezer and pop out onto a cutting board. Chop into 12 pieces and store in freezer til ready to serve. When serving, defrost for 5 minutes, then eat immediately.
It's here! Fall has officially begun and as promised last week, I've got a pumpkin recipe that will, if I can be so bold, blow your mind. Sure, I love pumpkin spiced desserts and other sweet recipes, but you know what? Pumpkins are vegetables and they make for delicious savory dishes too. As promised, this chili pairs wonderfully with last week's Cornbread Muffins recipe and if you need to throw it in a crockpot instead of cooking it on the stovetop, that works! Just make sure to brown your onion and ground turkey first, then dump all the ingredients in and set the crockpot for 4-6 hours on low. Without further ado, here you go!
2 T extra virgin olive oil
1 onion, chopped
1 lb organic ground turkey
1 t salt
1 t ground black pepper
1 lg acorn squash
1 (15 oz) can black beans, rinsed
1 (15 oz) can fire roasted tomatoes
1 c pumpkin puree
1 t cinnamon
1 t cumin
1 t chili powder
1/4 t cayenne
1 c vegetable or organic chicken broth
In a non-stick soup pot over medium heat, sauté the chopped onion in olive oil 'til translucent. Add ground turkey and cook 'til most of the pink is gone. As meat cooks, season with salt and pepper. Meanwhile, chop up acorn squash into 1/2 inch cubes, discarding seeds and skin as you cut. Add acorn squash, black beans, tomatoes, pumpkin puree, cinnamon, cumin, chili powder, cayenne, and broth to the pot and stir to combine. Bring chili to a low simmer and cover, allowing to cook for 30 minutes. After 30 minutes, check if acorn squash is cooked through (should be fork tender). Serve warm with organic shredded cheese, plain yogurt, sour cream, or crushed tortilla chips, as desired.
At the risk of downplaying today's recipe, let me just say: I am super excited to share next week's dish with you! It just has to wait 'til it's officially fall to make it's debut though. Is there anyone else out there who's obsessed with waiting 'til September 22 to celebrate the season? I guess I just know if I start diving into all things pumpkin spice any sooner, I'll be crushed by the disappointment of lingering summer weather...
ANYWAY, today's recipe can be enjoyed with a number of dishes and is super versatile. I love serving these muffins with a whipped honey butter, but you could also go the savory route and add a little cheddar with minced jalapeño to the top. They're gluten free and very mild in flavor, so your sensitive tummies or picky eaters will likely count these as a win! Here we go:
Whole Grain Cornbread Muffins
Yields 1 dozen muffins
1 c brown rice flour
1 c organic cornmeal
1 T baking powder
1/4 t salt
2 organic eggs
1/2 c organic salted butter, melted and cooled
1/4 c honey
1 c organic buttermilk
1 c organic corn (previously frozen and defrosted is great)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and prepare a standard size muffin tin (grease or line with parchment cups). Melt butter so it can begin cooling and set out all other liquid ingredients. Into a large bowl, whisk together brown rice flour, cornmeal, baking powder, and salt. In a separate bowl, beat eggs. Add melted and cooled butter, honey, and buttermilk and whisk to combine. Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients and combine thoroughly. Lastly, fold in corn and spoon mixture into muffin cups. Bake for 20-23 minutes, until edges begin to brown and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
This soup is wonderful for the transition from summer to fall. Tomatoes are obviously a star of the summer garden and yet, a warm bowl of soup welcomes cozying up celebrate those colder months. And while this soup will be best with in-season homegrown tomatoes (I cannot lie), you could easily make it year round with store bought tomatoes or even canned (use two 28oz cans of fire roasted tomatoes and skip all the steps involved with blanching and broiling). So however you decide to tackle this recipe, enjoy the ever-comforting art of stirring that soup pot!
Garden Fresh Tomato Soup
12 medium ripe tomatoes of any variety
1/4 c olive oil, divided
2 T balsamic vinegar
1 t salt, divided
1 t black pepper, divided
1 sweet onion, chopped
3 carrots, chopped
1 t dried basil
1 t red chili flakes (optional)
1 1/2 c raw cashews
1 quart vegetable broth
Large handful fresh basil
Bring a large pot of water to a rolling boil. Preheat your broiler to high and set out a large, greased cookie sheet. Score each tomato by making an X anywhere on the skin. Gently drop each tomato into the pot of water and return to a boil. After 2-3 minutes (or when tomato skins begin pulling away from flesh), remove tomatoes with tongs and set aside to cool slightly. Once cool enough to handle, peel each tomato and slice in half (discarding any remaining stems/cores), placing on the cookie sheet. Toss sliced tomatoes in 2 T olive oil, 2 T balsamic vinegar, 1/2 t salt, and 1/2 t black pepper. Broil for 5-10 minutes, or until tomatoes begin to darken and bubble.
Meanwhile, empty your water pot and return to the stove over medium heat. Add remaining olive oil and sauté chopped onion and carrots until veggies begin to caramelize. Then, add in remaining slat, pepper, dried basil red chili flakes (if using), and cashews. Stir to combine and continue sautéing this mixture for 5 more minutes (use a splash of vegetable broth here and there if bottom of the pan requires some deglazing). Lastly, add in vegetable broth and broiled tomatoes (with all their juices). Stir to combine and bring to a simmer. After 5 minutes of simmering, puree the soup 'til smooth by transferring to a blender or using an immersion blender. Lastly, stir in fresh basil 'til wilted. Serve immediately and top with extra basil, red chili flakes, parmesan cheese, or a drizzle of olive oil, as desired. Store leftovers in the refrigerator for up to 1 week or in the freezer for up to 6 months. Enjoy!
When the end of summer rolls around, I am eager to see the weather cool down (I know I'm not alone in this), but I'm not as eager to say goodbye to all the produce that's been readily available for the past few months. Don't get me wrong--I adore fall produce (and we'll celebrate it plenty here on the Nourished! Recipes page in just a few short weeks...don't you worry). However, nothing really compares with the bold flavors of summer. I would say that summer produce, unlike any other time of year, sings on it's own. What I mean by that is while we may need to dress up squash with oils, spices, and proteins in the winter and while we may need to roast asparagus with garlic and lemon in the spring...come summer time, items like tomatoes, stone fruit, berries, melon, and avocados are amazing on their own.
Now that I've declared my love for summer produce for the thousandth time this year, I'm squeezing one more peach recipe into the arsenal before the close of this marvelously sunny season. And while peaches are one of those fruits that stand on their own quite nicely, we will be dressing them up a bit for the sake of today's dish. I can't wait for you to taste this Peaches and Cream Oatmeal! Now when I say cream, I'm actually referring to the creaminess of the oat milk you'll use in this recipe. I find oat milk thick and delicious (not particularly on its own, but in a recipe--yes!). And while you can certainly swap the oat milk for dairy and the flax eggs for actual eggs, this baked oatmeal serves as a lovely vegan option on its own. In fact, serve it with a dollop of coconut cream if you want to really play up the dish's name. Enjoy!
Peaches and Cream Baked Oatmeal
3 c chopped peaches, divided
3 flax eggs (1 flax egg=1 T ground flaxseed + 2 T water, whisked)
2 c oat milk
1/3 c maple syrup
2 T oil
2 t vanilla extract
2 1/3 c old fashioned oats (use certified gluten free if necessary)
2 t cinnamon
1/4 t nutmeg
1 t baking powder
1/3 c pumpkin seeds
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9x9" square baking dish and sprinkle in a little over half of the chopped peaches to cover the bottom. In a mixing bowl, whisk together flax eggs (important to make flax eggs first as simply adding flax and water to the wet ingredients will not yield the same results), oat milk, maple syrup, oil, and vanilla extract. In a separate mixing bowl, mix together oats, cinnamon, nutmeg, baking powder, and salt. Add wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and whisk to combine. Fold in pumpkin seeds and pour batter evenly over peaches. Top with remaining peaches and bake for 45-50 minutes, or until center is no longer wobbly and edges have turned a nice golden brown. Cool for 20 minutes before serving in squares. Once fully cooled, store covered in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
Chia pudding is not only a lovely sweet dessert, it’s also a healthy snack full of fiber! Once you try the recipe this way, explore your own combinations of flavors by swapping out the frozen fruit, natural liquid sweetener, and other flavor add ins with your own ideas. It’s supremely versatile.
⅓ c honey
¼ c cocoa powder
1 (13-14 oz) can full fat coconut milk
½ c chia seeds
3 T cacao nibs
1 t vanilla extract
½ c finely chopped frozen cherries (I prefer organic, dark sweet cherries)
Heat honey slightly (about 10 seconds in microwave) so it is easier to whisk and add to a large bowl. Whisk in cocoa powder ’til smooth, then add in coconut milk (whisk in a little at a time, avoiding clumps). Finally, add remaining ingredients and whisk to combine. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours (this will thicken your pudding). Serve cold.
If you like this recipe, hit me up for the Vegetable Explosion menu for a week's worth of vegan meals!
It's recipe sharing time again! Today I want to put some white bean chicken chili on your tables. This dish is SUPER simple but does not compromise on health or flavor. Isn't it exciting when a dish fits the bill on all three accounts? Enjoy, friends!
White Bean Chicken Chili
1 T olive oil
1 sweet onion, chopped
2 organic green bell peppers, chopped
Generous pinch sea salt
Pinch black pepper
1 t cumin
1 lb organic ground chicken
8-10 oz jar good quality salsa verde
1 qt organic chicken broth
2 cans white beans, drained and rinsed
In a large soup pot, saute onion and bell peppers in olive oil over medium heat 'til onions are translucent. Season with salt, pepper, and cumin. Add ground chicken to the pot and break up with a wooden spoon. Cook until pink color is nearly gone (chicken will finish cooking during the simmering process). Add salsa verde, chicken broth, and white beans to the pot. Bring chili to a simmer and leave simmering, uncovered, for 20 minutes. Serve warm with organic white cheddar cheese and organic whole milk yogurt, as desired.
Gluten free baking is rarely foolproof...it usually takes a few tries when developing a recipe to come up with the perfect texture, temperature, and baking time. I've been pretty excited about the combination of sour cream and cranberries for the past month, so when I needed a new recipe for my gluten free clients, I looked to inspiration from the Minimalist Baker. The "bones" of her blackberry cornmeal muffins provided me with some ideas for how to turn my new flavor combination idea into an awesome muffin! So here you have it:
Gluten Free Cranberry Sour Cream Muffins
For the cranberry sauce:
12 oz raw cranberries
Juice of 1 navel orange
1/4 c honey
1 t allspice
For the muffins:
2 T honey
1/2 c coconut sugar
1 1/4 c organic, full fat sour cream
1 c cornmeal
1 c oat flour
1/4 c almond meal
Pinch sea salt
1 1/2 t baking soda
In a small saucepan, combine all ingredients for the cranberry sauce. Bring to a slow simmer and allow to continue simmering for 20 minutes, until cranberries have burst and sauce begins to thicken. Strain sauce over the sink and measure out 1 cup (depending on how large your orange was, the sauce may produce slightly more that a cup...reserve any extra for a homemade salad dressing or something!). Set aside to cool.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees and greese a 12 cup muffin tin. In a large bowl, whisk together eggs, honey, coconut sugar, and sour cream. In a separate bowl, combine cornmeal, oat flour, almond meal, sea salt, and baking soda. Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients and stir to combine. Fold in cooled cranberry sauce thoroughly. Spoon batter into muffin cups (not quite to the brim) and bake for 25 minutes, or until edges begin to brown and centers are set. Turn out onto a cooling rack to cool before serving. Enjoy!
We so have another two months of warm weather left in Southern California, but today I'm sitting in 73 degree overcast bliss and allowing myself to dabble in autumn plans...
These plans include publishing a second edition of A Nourished Holiday and, of course, sharing more recipes here! As I type, I've got a batch of rustic applesauce simmering on the stove. Making applesauce is my favorite way to use up the questionable looking apples from an orchard haul (though a trip to such an orchard may still be weeks off). Apples are just coming into season right now, so enjoy this super quick and simple recipe that's packed full of fiber.
12 sweet apples, preferably organic, partly peeled (it’s ok to leave a little on for texture) and trimmed of any really crummy spots
2 c organic spiced cider (100% juice)
2 t cinnamon
Core and chop apples into 1” pieces. Dump all ingredients into a large soup pot and stir to combine. Simmer for 30 minutes, stirring halfway through. Then, strain juices (save them for a sauce or double strain them and drink as spiced cider!) and you’re left with a pot full of spiced, soft apple pieces. With a potato masher, mash apples until you have a smooth-chunky consistency. Serve hot or cold, plain or with fried food (like potato pancakes).
For baby food, cut the cinnamon in half and puree apples after straining. Keeps well in the freezer for up to 6 months.
The last time I posted on the blog, I focused on the amazing summer fruit available right now in our part of the world. Vegetables took a back seat for the day, but today, I want to give you a recipe for something that may be in season where you live--spaghetti squash! Technically, June is the end of spaghetti squash season here in California (though many grocery stores carry it year round), but I still love this as a summer recipe because spaghetti squash could easily be substituted for a number of spiralized vegetables...zucchini, yellow squash, carrots, peppers...If you've never heard of spiralizing, check it out here!
Zucchini would be my first choice as a substitute because of it's prevalence in our area in June and July. In fact, here's a photo of our vegetable garden at the peak of summer harvest (and fortunately, surviving this insane heat wave). Whatever vegetable you choose to use in this recipe, I hope you enjoy it!
Spaghetti Squash with Turkey Meatballs
20 turkey meatballs (recipes below)
1 large spaghetti squash
Approx ½ c water
2 c good quality marinara
Cut spaghetti squash in half lengthwise and scrape out seeds. Place one half in a heatproof dish, cut-side up. Fill the cavity with water and replace other half over the top (as if you’re putting the squash back together). Microwave for 10-15 minutes (flipping squash over every five minutes and checking for fork-tenderness). While squash cooks, begin to prepare meatballs. Once squash is cooked, drain any remaining water and with an oven mitt, hold the shell of each half and use a fork to scrape out spaghetti “noodles”, and set aside in a clean bowl. Once meatballs are straining, add spaghetti “noodles” to the meatball pan. Add in marinara, then the strained meatballs and allow flavors to marry for 5-10 minutes, over low heat. Serve warm and top with additional parmesan, if desired.
Makes 20 meatballs
.75 lb organic ground turkey
1 cage free egg
1 slice whole wheat or whole grain, gluten free toast, chopped/crumbled into very fine pieces
1 T dried Italian herbs mixture
½ t sea salt
½ t ground black pepper
¼ c finely shredded fresh parmesan cheese (organic, if possible)
2 T extra virgin olive oil
In a large bowl, combine all ingredients with hands and form 20 equal sized meatballs. Wash hands. Cook meatballs in a large skillet in 2 batches (1 T olive oil allotted for each batch) over medium low heat, until browned on every side and cooked through (no pink when one is cut open). Set to strain over a paper towel and wipe skillet down before moving on to the next step.