Friday, September 27, 2013

This weeks food prep

Calzones, red pepper hummus, baba ghanouj, a very strange almond spread, zuchinni/apple/carrot muffins and bars (iced for fun), apple pie millet (ready to go in the slow cooker), breaded tofu "pumpkins", and a bunch of market fresh vegetables! Oh, and home made pitas in the centre!

This week's lunches were a breeze thanks to a few hours of prep on Sunday. I still had time for a run, a hike with the family and other mum duties. It is so worth it! 

Check out for more inspiration. I've also been freezing half the lunch items so my boy doesn't tire of them. Getting a nice frozen variety now, he can choose the night before and I'll pull out a tamale or calzone. It's going well, I'm totally going to keep it up!

Monday, September 23, 2013

Millet is the New Oatmeal!

Millet is one of the most easily digested grains, and one of the most non-allergenic. Long thought of as bird seed in North America, millet seems to be making a comeback in this gluten sensitive time. The internet has claims of the grain having high anti-oxidant activity and being one of the only alkalizing grains available. It is also a pre-biotic, like most fibres, and feeds the healthy bacteria in our gut allowing them to flourish.

All that aside, it is tasty and I am a promoter of diversifying the diet and including a variety of many different foods, including grains (thinking beyond rice, wheat and oats.)

This tasty recipe is easy to throw together before bed, and is ready for you when you wake up. It is a good amount for a 3.5-4 quart slow cooker, if yours is too big, double the recipe and freeze some or use it within a few days.

Apple Pie Millet

1/2 cup millet
1 1/2 cups water
1/2 cup applesauce or a pureed apple
1/4 cup apple juice
1 tsp vanilla
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 cup raisins
1 apple, peeled and chopped

Lightly oil the slow cooker to prevent sticking. Then mix together all ingredients. Cook on low overnight (8 hours). In the morning top with milk of choice, pecans, pumpkin seeds, brown sugar, maple syrup...whatever you like.

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Apple Upside Down Baked Oatmeal!

We have been lucky enough to get free apples! After processing the fruit and tomatoes of the past month, I wasn't even sure we should head out to Summerland for a second round of apple picking, but having grown up in Manitoba where amazing, organic and free apples are VERY hard to come by (well, crab apples are pretty tasty...) we couldn't pass up the opportunity. Many jars of applesauce later, plus at least two apple crisps, several batches of apple/zuchinni muffins and a few rounds in the dehydrator I used the inspiration of Chocolate Covered Katie to come up with this recipe. We also got an apple corer and the apple rings it makes are inspiring many other recipes (I'm dreaming up apple ring/oatmeal cookies, apple pancakes, apple upside down cake...)  
I followed a basic baked oatmeal recipe and made a few adaptations:
Per ramekin:
lightly grease the bottom and sides. Add an apple ring from a peeled, cored apple to the bottom of each ramekin. Add 1/4 tsp Earth Balance or butter, and 1/4 tsp brown sugar, and dust with cinnamon. In a bowl, mix together (for each ramekin):
1/2 cup oatmeal
1/4 cup applesauce
1/4 cup milk of choice
1/4 tsp vanilla extract
a dash of salt
a dash of cinnamon
a touch of liquid sweetner
Then press onto the top of each apple ring. Bake at 375F for 15-20 minutes, then on broil for another two. Remove from the ramekin and place upside in a bowl. Add milk, chopped nuts, cinnamon, maple syrup, raisins, chocolate chips (whatever you like) to taste.
I double this and fill three ramekins for my little boys and me.
1/2 Tbsp nut butter, butter, Earth Balance or coconut oil


Monday, September 16, 2013

A Couple of Nut Free Granola Bars!

I'd wanted to post a trio, it just sounded better. But my third bar wasn't perfect. Delicious, but not perfect, so I'll keep working on it.

Bar #1

2 cups oats
1/4 cup wheat germ
1/4 cup chia seeds
2 Tbsp coconut 
1 cup flour
1 cup date purée
1/4 cup coconut oil, butter, or Earth Balance
1/4 cup honey, agave, or maple syrup
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/4 cup pumpkin seeds
Cinnamon to taste
Chocolate chips to taste

Mix it all, pour into a 9x13 parchment lined pan. Bake at 350 for 20 minutes. Cut into bars, then cool.

Bar #2

1 1/2 cups flour
1 cup oats
1/2 cup wheat germ
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
Dash of salt
3/4 cup dry sweetener ( brown sugar, coconut sugar)
3/4 cup coconut oil
1 cup milk or non- dairy milk of choice
1/4 cup chia
1 teaspoon vanilla
Chocolate chips to taste

Mix wet ingredients, add dry. Bake in a greased 9x13 pan at 350 for 25-30 minutes. Cool and gently slice. It's delicate! Freeze individually wrapped.

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Half Marathon Update!

Well, the Wine Country Half Marathon was this weekend. I spent the day before cleaning up a huge paint mess that my four year old and his buddy made for me. It was insane the amount of paint they got everywhere. I also spent the week before canning/freezing and drying which meant a lot of time standing on my feet. Felt like shopping. Ugh.
I also spent the night before wondering if I'd done enough to prepare for the day. And why didn't I eat more on the day before? Oh, right, the paint mess. I spent a good portion of the day on my hands and knees scrubbing green paint out of a carpet!

But I did it!! I achieved my modest goal of breaking two hours (1:58:54!). I completed all my runs as scheduled except the last 40 minute run when I couldn't tear myself away from 50 lbs of tomatoes!

The day started off quite rainy so I made the call to leave the family at home and go alone. I met a wonderful woman, the owner of "Living Water Vineyard" and spent the hour before the race with her. I can't wait to try her wine, reviews of their certified organic wine sound great! (There's also a carriage house on site where you get a bottle of wine and a lovely place to stay.)

The beginning was a lot more uphill than I had imagined and I'm just thankful I live in Glenrosa and almost always do hill training. My first 6 miles were great, I ran them in 49:14 (my best pace ever!).  But I started to fade in the last few miles. My hip had been bugging me most of the week before, likely a canning injury. But as I neared the last mile I was so close to my goal I knew I had to push.

The event was followed by a wine and music festival. But I was cold and wanted to hit up the Farmer's Market for our weekly produce haul and one of Master Bakery's cinnamon buns. So I didn't even have a sip of wine, just headed out to the car and off to market. Sweaty and happy!

Today, I'm already wondering what's next. I'm making my new training plan and searching for events. I feel like with a proper rest week prior to the event, I could push it even more and I can't wait to try!
Took me a while to figure out this giant medal is a coaster! Cute idea!

Monday, September 2, 2013

Back to School lunchbox prep

I've been inspired by other RD's spending a bit of weekend time preparing food for the upcoming week. ( Well, school starts tomorrow so I spent some time this weekend making food for the lunch box. Earlier in the week I made a couple of healthy granola bars too, nut free so they can go to school but more substantial and less sugary than store bought bars.

Cooked millet ( the new oatmeal-a future post dedicated to millet is coming), Desi's Favourite Yellow Sauce (carrot, 1/2 cup cashews, salt, 1 tsp apple cider vinegar and water to blend), roasted cherry tomatoes, roasted chickpeas, cocoa date balls, millet bean balls, zucchini apple muffins and Tofu Stromboli. 

I'm learning about hyperlinks, so for now, please scroll down for recipes and links! This is a long post- trio of granola bars is coming soon! (cocoa date balls)

Millet bean balls

1 cup cooked millet
1 cup cooked white beans
1 cup steamed vegetables (broccoli, carrots, green beans, onion, garlic- whatever)
1/2 cup ground pumpkin seeds
2 Tbsp soy sauce
2 Tbsp Arrowroot powder
Onion powder, garlic powder, chilli powder,basil, oregano- whatever you and your kids like)

Mash it all together,chill if you want it to be easier to roll. Roll into balls, place on a greased cookie sheet and bake at 350 for about 30 minutes,turning a couple of times till browned and dry. The kids stole four when I was folding towels!

Tofu Stromboli- the dough recipe comes from "Vegan Lunchbox Around the World"

For the dough:
1cup + 2Tbsp warm water
1 Tbsp yeast
1 tsp sugar
2 Tbsp olive oil
1/2 tsp salt
2 1/2-3 cups flour

For the filling:
1/2 block tofu
1 cup kale
1 Tbsp lemon juice
Dill, garlic, onion,basil and salt to taste

Add yeast and sugar to warm water. Let rest 10 minutes. Add oil. Add 2 cups flour and salt, mix well adding more flour until dough forms, then sprinkle with flour and knead about five minutes, adding flour as needed to keep dough from sticking. Let rise covered in a greased bowl about an hour. 

While dough is rising, blend filling ingredients in a food processor.

Roll out dough into a rectangle and spread with filling, then roll it up pinching the sides. Place in a greased loaf pan or on a cookie sheet, for a flatter bread. Bake a 375 for30 minutes, until loaf is browned and sounds hollow. Slice and freeze individual slices.