Perfect Flourless Double Chocolate Cookies (GF)(DF)

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Every now and again I get a strong craving for baked goods. By every now and again I mean every day at 3:00 pm. I usually have some chocolate, but I have been slowly picking away at Easter candy for going on 2 months now and it’s lost it’s novelty. So I adapted my flourless chocolate chip peanut butter cookies to create this delicious blend of rich ingredients. This is so easy and you most likely have all the ingredients you need sitting in your pantry. I know I do at all times.

1 cup creamy nut butter (I used peanut)
½ cup sugar
1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon salt
¼ cup cocoa powder
¾ cup chocolate chips

Combine the nut butter, sugar, egg and vanilla until smooth. Next add in the dry ingredients and lastly the chocolate chips. Spoon tablespoon sized balls onto a parchment paper lined sheet. Bake in a 350 degree oven for 8-12 minutes. Definitely stay nearby and watch these cookies. They usually cook fast and differently in every oven.

These cookies are small and easy to eat so they go fast. I have never doubled the recipe but I am sure it would work fine! Let me know what you think.

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Peach Crisp (V) (GF)

Peach Crisp (GF)(V)

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Peach seasons is the BEST! It is hard to resist grabbing a dozen at the farmers market. The problem is, they all like to ripen at the same time. I love making a peach crisp because it is such a light dessert that I sometimes find myself having it for breakfast! This recipe is so hard to mess up so feel free to make changes to ingredients based on what you have laying around. I adapted this recipe from the Chalkboard Mag’s Peach Black Berry Crisp.

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For the Peach Filling:

8-10 Medium/Large peaches
½ Cup Almond or Coconut Milk
½ Cup Organic Brown Sugar (you can also use honey, maple syrup or turbinado sugar)
¼ Cup Almond Flour/Meal
1 tsp Cinnamon
½ tsp sea salt

For the Crisp Topping:

1 Cup Rolled Oats (Trader Joes GF)
¼ Cup Almonds roughly chopped
½ Cup Almond Flour/Meal
¼ Cup Brown Sugar
1 tsp Cinnamon
½ tsp sea salt
½ Cup Coconut Oil

Set your oven to 375 degrees F

Slice all your peaches and set aside in a large bowl.

In a blender combine all the remaining filling ingredients until smooth. Poor the liquid mixture over the peaches and set aside in your refrigerator.

Combine the second list of ingredients in a bowl adding the coconut oil last. Make sure the coconut oil is worked through as evenly as possible. I used my hands to accomplish this.

Grease your tart pan or casserole dish with coconut oil. Slide in your peach filling then top evenly with your crisp topping. Bake for 30-35 minutes depending on the size of your casserole dish(s).

I used two medium sized casserole dishes (one 8×8 and an oval dish of a similar size). If you have a large casserole dish that works great too! I made one to enjoy at home and one for a get together tomorrow evening. It is up to you!

This is so delicious and a easy to make, you must try before fall arrives!

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Garden Veggie Bake

imageThere is nothing more gratifying than growing your own food. As a novice, every edible veggie I pluck makes me giddy. Yesterday was my first full day home after being away for the weekend so I ventured down to the jungle that is my back yard to harvest my goodies. I was yanking zucchini left and right and finally had a yellow squash ready for plucking. My heirloom tomatoes are cranking out in full force. I think I have had at least two a day, sometimes many more. Everything is better when it is fresh.

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So today I laid out my harvested goodies inspired to create something delicious I could eat on for a couple of days. I got to slicing and before I knew it my veggie bake was steaming in front of me.

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What you will need

4 summer squash ( I did 3 Zucchini and 1 Yellow Squash)
6 small heirloom tomatoes or a container or a small container of grape/sun gold tomatoes
5 fresh basil leaves
2 cloves of garlic
1-2 Tbsp of olive oil
Salt & pepper
1/4 Cup of shredded mozzarella cheese (optional)

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Lightly spray a 8×8 or 9×9 baking dish with coconut oil or olive oil.

Slice your squash into small chunks. If using grape, sun gold or cherry tomatoes slice into halves. If you are using a smaller heirloom you can slice into 2-3 pieces. Mince 2 cloves of garlic and chop 5 basil leaves. Throw all your ingredients in a mixing bowl and toss with olive oil. Season with salt and pepper. Move your mixture into your baking dish and pop into the oven uncovered for 25 minutes.

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When the 20 minutes is up you can add optional mozzarella cheese. Sprinkle over the veggies, cover with tin foil and bake for an additional 10 minutes or until the cheese is melted.

Enjoy!

Raw & Gluten Free “Donut Holes”

Well it snowed for about 12 hours today. I was able to make it to one client but even that was pushing it. So I had a bunch of downtime today, which was nice. I got to have a long workout, take a shower long enough to shave my legs, shoveled out our walk way and my car and I caught up on all workout and nutrition plans for clients. I have probably had 10 cups of loose leaf tea as well. Now that I think of it, I accomplished quite a bit. I share all this because I like to bore you, so lets talk “Donut Holes” (heavy on the nuts, sans dough).

I recently inherited my mom’s super retro food processor. While my boyfriend says is sounds like a lawnmower, I love it. It works well and it has a little sentimental value. Apparently my mom made all my baby food in this bad boy Oyster.

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These little protein bites are slightly sweet and packed with protein and fiber. I wouldn’t put them in the dessert category because they lack the decadence I demand in a dessert. I would call them the perfect pre workout snack or addition to breakfast.

Here is what you will need:
• ¾ cup of almonds
• 12 pitted dates
• 2 tbsp of peanut butter
• 1 tbsp chocolate protein powder
• 2 tbsp of chocolate tahini

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My favorite chocolate tahini. Just 2g of sugar!

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First place almonds in a food processor or vita-mix. Process until you have an almond meal consistency. Move your meal to a mixing bowl. Process your dates for about 30 seconds or until you have a sticky paste. Add the rest of the ingredients including the almond meal to your date paste. Pulse continuously as needed until you everything is combined. Move your “dough” back to the mixing bowl to roll into tablespoon sized balls. I keep my donut holes in the refrigerator but they are perfectly fine covered at room temperature.

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Almonds post processing

If you want to make these a little more dessert like you can add some mini chocolate chips. You may find you need a little honey to help the chips stick.

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Enjoy!

Slow Cooker Chicken & Sweet Pots

Everywhere I look I see delicious fall recipes.  I would love to crank out an elaborate seasonal feast every night, but with my funky work schedule I like to have dinner ready when I get home.  My last client usually ends around or after dinner time so it can be a pain to come home and prepare food.  The crock pot is truly the answer to this dilemma.  This recipe is gluten free, delicious and only takes 10 minutes of prep.

Sweet Potato Crock

Ingredients:

  • 2 large sweet potatoes
  • 1 pound of organic skinless chicken breasts
  • Half of an onion
  • 1 cup of unsweetened apple sauce
  • 2 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
  • Salt & Pepper
  • 1 tablespoon cumin
  • 2 cloves of garlic minced

Directions:

  1. Peel and chop sweet potatoes
  2. Slice chicken into one inch cubes
  3. Place chicken and sweet potatoes in crock pot and season with salt and pepper
  4. Mix onion, apple sauce, apple cider vinegar, cumin and garlic in a small bowl
  5. Place mixture on top of chicken and sweet potatoes, cover and cook for 6 hours on low

Crock Pot Pots

I have eaten this dish a few ways.  On the first night I ate the dish alone.  On the second day I mixed with red quinoa and on the third day I served alongside sauteed kale and brussel sprouts.  It’s tasty, filling and delicious as a leftover.  I found the original recipe via Stock Pilling Moms and look forward to trying more of their slow cooker recipes!

Decadent Peanut Butter Oat Energy Bites

I am not kidding. These things are decadent.  I recently posted on powdered peanut butter and promised a recipe to follow.  Behold, deliciousness made from dehydrated peanuts and a few other clean ingredients! As always, this recipe is gluten free!

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The recipe makes 4 bites.  I had two after lunch…they took care of my sweet tooth.  I found the recipe on Betty Lou’s Inc.’s website  and made a few modifications.  The chocolate chunk was my touch.  It’s not dessert unless there is chocolate.  My philosophy: without chocolate, it’s breakfast.

Makes about 4 bites

  • ¼ cup + 1 Tbsp Organic Powdered Peanut Butter
  • 3 Tbsp gluten free quick rolled oats (I used Trader Joe’s)
  • 1 Tbsp + 1 tsp water
  • ½ Tbsp organic honey
  • 2 tsp coconut oil
  • 4 pieces of dark chocolate
  1. Mix Organic Powdered Peanut Butter and oats together in a small bowl.
  2. Add water, agave, and coconut oil and mix until well blended and consistency is like cookie dough.
  3. Roll into small balls.
  4. Chill for about 15 minutes to firm up, or eat immediately for softer truffles.
  5. Store in the refrigerator.

This takes about 5 minutes to whip up (dangerous).  I think I will be making these until I kill my jar of powder.  I ate them before refrigeration when they were soft and creamy like a peanut butter truffle. I am not very patient when a sweet tooth strikes.  Ask anyone who has ever eaten a meal with me, 30 seconds after my last bite I am hankering for chocolate.

Enjoy!

Product Review: Powdered Peanut Butter

NUTS. I love nuts.  Filling, satisfying, crunchy, whats not to love? Nut butter? I’m obsessed.  I often have a big spoon of almond butter and call it a snack or dessert.  It’s indulgent, delicious and satisfying.  I bitch and moan at Trader Joes when the Raw Unsalted Crunchy is out of stock.

Now with peanut butter, I’m a little picky.  Any “Jif like” product contains hydrogenated oils and has a weird filmy texture.  My dog loves it, but it’s not for me.  I do enjoy a good, all natural peanut butter from time to time–mostly in desserts 🙂

Nut butters are high in fat, which for me is a good and a bad thing.  I maintain a pretty plant based diet and sometimes I really need the fat in nuts to satiate my hunger and keep me satisfied.  However, I am a junkie for sweets, so any way to naturally reduce the fat and calories in my sweet treats is worth a try.

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Enter Powdered Peanut Butter.  I saw this product (Just Great Stuff  the Original Organic Powdered Peanut Butter) when I was picking up my dog’s peanut butter yesterday and bought it out of curiosity.  Just Great Stuff is Organic, Non GMO, Gluten Free, Corn Free and Low Glycemic–wohoooo! I also love the short and simple list of ingredients: Organic Peanuts, Organic Coconut Sugar, Sea Salt.

Powdered peanut butter is basically dehydrated peanuts with salt and sugar (sans oil).  This is why the powdered version has 90% less fat.  Since the majority of peanut butter’s calories come from fat, the powdered version has about a quarter of the calories.  A popular powdered brand on the market is PB2.  I saw this product but decided to spend the extra money for organic and GMO free.  Peanuts are a highly sprayed crop, so it is worth paying extra for organic and GMO free peanut products.

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So I mixed up one serving of powdered peanut butter (2 tablespoon dry) with one tablespoon of water to do a taste test after lunch yesterday.  Sadly, two tablespoons dry yields a little more than 1 tablespoon wet, so in reality I would double the calories and fat if you are looking for two tablespoons of creamy peanut butter. The taste is very similar, but the texture and mouth feel cannot compare to a nut butter with natural oil.  I do foresee myself using the powder in desserts, mixing it in my Greek yogurt and adding to protein shakes and smoothies.  I’ve even pondered mixing it with coconut oil for some healthy fat.  Stay tuned, there will be a powdered peanut butter concoction on the blog next week!

In addition to the lack of creamy mouth feel, you miss out on all the healthy fat that clean eaters need to stay energized! This society has a fear of fat, when the real culprit in  Americas’ diet is sugar.  The powdered version yields the same amount of sugar as creamy peanut butter (which is relatively low).   Powdered peanut butter has half the protein when compared to it’s creamy & oily counterpart, another reason to keep the real thing in your pantry.

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If you have not tried powdered peanut butter yet, i recommend giving it a whirl. If you have already added it into your recipe repertoire, tell me how you use it!

Delicious Gluten Free Quiche

quicheI love all things eggs, so when I came across this quiche recipe with a sweet potato crust I had to try it. Saturday night I summoned my partner in crime and the kitchen to help me test and taste.  It’s much more fun to cook when you are drinking wine with a pal while listening to “Buy U A Drank” radio. We have proven this over the past two years. This recipe was tested on a whim so we just used what we had.  Below is our spin on the quiche.

Ingredients

  • 2 medium sweet potatoes
  • olive oil
  • 1 bunch of spinach
  • 5 spring onions
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • 1/2 green bell pepper
  • 6 eggs
  • 1/4 cup of shredded garlic & herb grass fed cheddar

How to

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees and spray/grease a casserole or pie dish with olive oil
  2. Thinly slice the sweet potatoes then place them at the bottom of the dish and around the edges, fill the gaps the best you can
  3. Bake in the oven for 15 minutes. When finished reduce heat to 375 degrees
  4. While the crust is baking saute the garlic, spring onions, spinach and bell pepper for about 10 minutes. Set aside
  5. Whisk together eggs and mix in 3/4 of the cheese then set aside
  6. When the crust is out and the oven is reduced to 375 degrees, mix together the sauteed vegetables and egg mixture
  7. Pour the mixture into the crust and bake for another 40 minutes
  8. Sprinkle your remaining cheese (and maybe some extra) on top. Don’t burn your tongue!

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Our quiche came out perfectly when cooked for 40 minutes.  We served the quiche with an ear of corn and roasted crispy asparagus. The sweet potato crust was way more flavorful than your basic quiche crust. It really made the dish.  The sweetness of the potatoes really balanced out the herb-y and savory egg mixture.  If you have left overs, it is still yummy the next day! Amanda heated her left overs up in the microwave the next day and I ate it cold, it’s tasty either way.  It’s really good with red wine, just try not to drink at breakfast.

This is a great post workout meal, especially if you are not much of a meat eater.  Eggs are packed with protein and amino acids, and you will stay full thanks to their omega 3-fatty acid content.  Did I mention all the vitamins found in yolks?  Give it a whirl, it’s cheap and easy!

In this recipe the spinach, asparagus and spring onion all came from From the Farmer Dc which you can learn more about on last week’s blog post! My grass fed cheddar cheese was picked up at Reston’s Smart Market.  If you have not been yet this year, I recommend you go.  They have a few new vendors (two of which who offer gluten free goodies) and the produce is great!

If you have an questions, leave a comment!

From the Farmer: DC’s Best Farmers’ Market Delivered

Doc1A couple of weeks ago one of my clients told me about a new service she had subscribed to which delivered fresh, local produce to her door step once a week.  As a rabbit with a busy schedule, I knew it was something I would have to try.  Not only is From The Farmer convenient and sustainable, but it reasonably priced!  I signed up to receive half a bushel per week, which cost me $35.   The delivery is dropped off on your front stoop between 12 am and 7 am.   This morning I was welcomed by a insulated bag full of delicious local produce as I stepped out for my morning run at 6:15 am.  Here is what I got in my delivery:

• Pink Lady and Fuji Apples
• Asparagus
• Bunched Beets with Tops
• Spinach
• Asian Mustard Mix
• Spring Scallions
• French Breakfast Radishes

The great news is, a half bushel is more than enough to get me through the week.  I will definitely have plenty of greens for salads, sautes and green smoothies.  I love that this service provides where each piece of produce comes from along with suggested recipes (in e-mail form).  This will definitely help me mix up my diet, pulling me from my kale and sweet potato rut.  Below is an example of the preview e-mail I received three days prior to the delivery.

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While you do not choose the produce you receive, you can go in and modify your order 48 hours prior to delivery. If there is an item you do not particularly like, swap it out for something else available.  I personally love the variety offered and the opportunity to mix up my diet.  The company delivers to the DC and Baltimore Metro areas.  I live in Reston and was excited to see they deliver to my neighborhood.  Below is a photo collage of my morning delivery:

image (3)I unzipped the bag to find it packed full of fragrant, colorful fruits and veggies.  Bright pink radishes, yellow and red apples, deep burgundy beets and vibrant greens!  If you don’t need a delivery, there is no charge to you to skip a week.  You are billed at the end of each month after all your deliveries are tallied.  There is no fee to join or to cut off the deliveries.  This is a commitment free way to try a new avenue for receiving your weekly produce. It doesn’t hurt that the produce you receive is local and much more nutrient dense than anything you will find at a supermarket.

If you are in the DC or Baltimore area, sign up to receive your produce basket.  If you have a family to feed, order a bushel or two! You can even throw in a loaf of bread.

http://fromthefarmerdc.com/

From the Farmer LLC is a weekly farm-to-consumer delivery company with an emphasis on fresh, high-quality, local produce and an added dedication to connecting farmers with their consumers.