Nutella Cookies

I don’t bake much but when I do I try to come up with recipes that are very easy. No need to buy tons of gluten free flours and other expensive ingredients. This recipe is a wonderful chocolate hazelnut cookie with no flour. I made them for a party and it was a hit!

Ingredients:

1 Cup Nutella

1 Egg

1 Cup Sugar

1 tsp Baking Soda

1 Pinch Salt

1 tsp Vanilla

Start by mixing Nutella, egg and sugar together. Add baking soda, salt and vanilla. Now roll the dough into about 1 inch balls. Place on 2-3 foiled cookie sheet. Make sure each cookie if far apart because they will spread out large. Bake for 11 minutes, remove and let cool. Cookie’s will harden as they cool. Enjoy!

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Paleo Meenut Butter

I continue to sample new products that are paleo and fit into a whole30 life style. I have been hooked on nut butter forever. As a kid I loved peanut butter but since peanuts nuts are not considered paleo I have switched to sunflower and almond butter. If your read the ingredients on most nut butter you will find that they normally have sugar and other not so good junk in it. I learned about paleo meenut butter online and was very excited to give it a try.

Meenut butter is a combination of nuts and coconut into a wonderful nut butter. No added sugar and made with all local ingredients. It has a wonderful consistency that is slightly sweet and slightly salty. It worked great in my morning smoothies and  as a snack with carrots and apples. Filled with all the good stuff to keep you going all day. One serving has 5 grams of protein and only 1 gram of sugar! They have great recipe ideas listed on their site include cookies, cupcakes and savory treats.

INGREDIENTS (Quadruple Nut Power): California Almonds, California Organic Walnuts,Pecans, Organic Macadamia Nuts, Organic Coconut; Contains 2% or less of: Organic Golden Flax Seeds, Organic Sunflower Seeds, Sonoma Sea Salt;
CONTAINS: Tree Nuts

 

You can find meenut butter in some stores across the country or buy online at: http://mee-eat-paleo.myshopify.com/ 

They have a great selection of goodies to choose from. Makes a great treat or gift for anyone.

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Eggplant Tower

They other day Jay really wanted me to make some good eggplant parm. But he requested it with little cheese, eggplant be thin and crispy but not fried. I decided to make up an easy gluten free and paleo version. It came out great and we ate the whole thing.

Ingredients:
2 Eggplant sliced into rounds (about 1/2 inch thick)
2/3 Cup Salt
1 TBS Italian Seasoning
2 Tsp Pepper
1/2 TBS Garlic Powder
3 Cups Pasta Sauce
1/2 Cups Coconut flour (or parm cheese)

Start by coating each piece of eggplant with salt. Place salted eggplant in a container and allow it to sit for 2-8 hours. When ready, rinse the eggplant under water to remove salt and allow to dry for a few minutes. Place the dry eggplant on a foiled and sprayed baking pan. Sprinkle the garlic powder, pepper and Italian season on the top of eggplant. Bake at 450 degrees. Then, carefully flip each piece and cook another 5 min. Next, remove the tray and add about 1 TBS of sauce to each piece, sprinkle with 1/3 cup of the coconut flour or parm cheese. Place back in oven for 5 more minutes or broil for 3 minutes. When your ready to eat, stack the eggplant into small stacks and cover with extra sauce. Sprinkle with remaining flour or cheese and serve.

 

 

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Champorado

Every Valentines Day Jay always surprises me with a wonderful well planned meal. Always multiple courses, exotic, unique and excellent. This year the theme  was Mexican and Philippino fusion. He nailed it and the whole meal was amazing. For dessert he made this very special philppino chocolate pudding and it blew me away. In the states we have very few rice based treats but in other cultures rice can be used in many sweet options.

Ingredients:

3/4 Cup Dry Sweet Rice

2 Cups Water

2 Tbs Brown Sugar

1/2 Evaporated Milk

Topping

6 oz Bitter Sweet Chocolate

1/4 Water

Start by placing rice and water in slow cooker. Allow it to cook for 5 minutes and then stir in sugar. Cook until rice machine says its complete and rice is thick, sticky and not watery. When rice is done remove from rice cooker and give it about 10 minutes in fridge to cool. In four small bowls place equal parts of the evaporated milk. It should be about 2 Tbs in four separate glasses. Add equal amounts of cool rice to each bowl and place in fridge.

Now to make topping. Stat by chopping up the chocolate into small pieces and placing in box. Add water and heat. Heat over medium hight heat mixing slowly until chocolate is melted and thick sauce is formed.  Pour sauce over rice and cool the whole thing for at least an hour in fridge. Serve Cold.

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Spicy Avocado Ranch Dip

I was looking for something a little more fun then guacamole. This came out spicy, creamy and perfect for dipping veggies in.

Ingredients:

2 Small Avocados

1 Cup Yogurt

1/2 Lime

1/2 Cup Fresh Cilantro

1/2 tsp Salt

1/2 tsp Garlic

1 tsp Oregano

1 tsp Parsley

1 tsp Sugar

1 Jalapeño Diced ( leave seed if you want extra spice)

 

Using a food processor mix together avocado, cilantro, lime and jalapeño. One mixed well add yogurt, salt, garlic, parsley, oregano and sugar. Pure until smooth and serve cold.

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Carrot Halvah

My love for carrots with never end, I have been addicted since I was little. I make juice, bread, cake and even pasta with them. I have even been told that I have turned slightly orange form the large amount of carrots I can eat in a week. I was introduced to this desert at a great Indian wedding. Its could be compared to a carrot pudding.

Ingredients:

2 lbs Carrots
2 Tbsp oil of any kind
2 Tbsp light butter (earth balance if vegan)
1 tsp salt
1 Tbsp honey
1/4 cup Splenda
1/3 cup brown sugar
1 tsp Cinnamon
1/2 cup yellow raisin
4 Tbsp walnut meal or any crushed nuts you have around
1/2 Tbsp corn starch

The first step is to grate carrots fine. This can be done with a hand grater or simply in a food processor. Place carrots in pan with oil and sauté on low until carrots begin to become translucent. Adding the butter a few minutes into cooking. It’s important to watch them and not to let the carrots brown. Next, add the almond milk, sugar, cinnamon, cardamom, corn starch and salt. Allow the mixture to simmer low for at least 30 minutes string occasionally. The mixture will begin very liquid but the goal is to have it reach a rice pudding like consistency. After 30 minutes add half the walnut meal, all the raisins and continue to cook for about 10 more minutes or until desired consistency is reached. When complete, allow to cool and serve with remaining walnut meal.

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Roasted Persimmons

I love using seasonal food that I find in the market. Once summer rolls around the colors of the new stuff is always eye catching. Persimmons are a great side to any dish. They look like an orange tomato but when cooked, tastes like a sweet potato. This recipe is super simple a great one for kids.

I must admit I took this recipe from my boyfriend. He is an amazing cook but does not cook very often. Any dish he makes is always something to remember.

Ingredients:

3 Persimmons (cut into 1/8th chunks)

1 Tbsp. Olive oil

1 Tbsp. brown sugar

1 tsp. salt

1 tsp. pepper

Mix all the ingredients in a bowl. Place on a foiled pan and roast at 450 degrees for 15 minutes or until chunks begin to become golden brown.

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Moussaka

Between my mom and Jay I have seen many forms of Moussaka, it is the number one item they order when we eat at a greek restaurant. The best way I can explain it is as a Mediterranean lasagna. I never really tried it until recently and was shocked by what I had been missing. The blend of spices like cinnamon with beef and the creamy sauce was just a wonderful combination. I needed to replicate it both gluten free and a little more guilt free then the normal restaurant version. I promise it won’t disappoint!!!

Ingredients:
1 eggplant
2 medium potatoes
1 can diced tomatoes
1 pound lean ground meet ( beef, turkey, chicken or lamb)
1/4 cup red wine
1/3 chopped white onion
1/4 almond milk
4 oz of low fat cream cheese
2 1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp ginger
1 tsp nutmeg
Salt and pepper
1/4 cup grated parm cheese

The first step is to microwave the potatoes whole for 3-4 minutes. The goal is to begin the potato cooking process but not to make them to soft. Allow the potatoes to cool completely and slice thin ( the thinner the better). Next, slice the eggplant into think rounds, again the thinner the better. Coat the rounds with a heavy dusting of salt and allow it to sit on a baking sheet for a bit, until you begin to see the eggplant start to release some water (could take about 15mins.) While the eggplant is sitting begin to make the meat mixture.
Begin by browning the meat with chopped onion. Drain the liquid and add tomatoes, tomato paste, wine, nutmeg, 2 tsp cinnamon, ginger, salt and pepper to taste.
To make sauce simply combine milk, cream cheese, pinch of salt and 1/2 tsp of cinnamon. Microwave for 10-15 seconds and mix well until smooth. Set aside.
Now it’s time to assemble the mosuka. Spray a baking dish with non-stick spray. Place a layer of half the eggplant on the bottom. Above the bottom layer place half the potato rounds. Then a layer of half the meat and top meat with all the parm cheese. Repeat the layers of eggplant, potato and meat. Top the whole dish with an even layer of cream cheese sauce. Cook on 350 degrees for 25 minutes cover with foil. After 25 min remove foil and broil on low for an additional 5 minutes until the top layer begins to brown.

Makes about 6 servings. Pair very well with a fresh Greek salad.

Enjoy!!!

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