Tag Archives: natural foods

Made-from-Scratch Sunday

Now that the holidays are over, my body is in dire need of some healthy food. I can feel it.

No, not diet food. Not low-calorie food. Just homemade, nutrient-packed, scratch-made REAL food. It does a body good, you know. ;) My goal each week is to cook as much as possible on Sunday in hopes that it will take a little bit of the pressure off during the week, when there is just NO time. I’ve gotta feel good about what I’m feeding my boys!

And so begins Made-From-Scratch Sunday! Some recipes will be mine, some will be links to my favorites. If you all like it, it just may become a regular thing.

So I went searching some of my favorite internet spots for inspiration, and they did not disappoint.

My trip to Eating Well Magazine‘s site yielded this Cumin-Scented Wheatberry Lentil Soup:

A peek into my kitchen:

My little man just LOVES lentils!

My pal Lisa at Lisa’s Foods on the Move has given me the kick in the butt I need to get baking with her newest venture: baking her own bread for a year! A visit to Lisa’s blog never fails to center me and remind me of the way I want to be living, so I’m going to embark on her venture with her (sort of…)  I’m not sure I’ll make it the whole year, but I HATE paying money for storebought bread when I can make a fresh loaf myself, at home, so I set my sights on the No-Knead Bread recipe she recommended. Here are the lovely, golden brown results:

I also felt like I needed some rolls to accompany our soup, so I made the recipe that has been stalking me from the back of our bag of flour…(This recipe will be a part of next week’s Made-From-Scratch Sunday…I promise!)

Here’s a preview:

I hate to leave you hanging, but I’m fading fast tonight, and my bed is looking really good. You see, the lovely SaltyTooth mentioned fresh butter in a recent post, and with all this bread around, I felt like I just had to get shakin’! And now, I’m tired! (but my arms are ripped!)

Shake, shake, shake…and shake a little more…

I told you I was feeling inspired…I made butter rosettes! Fancy! And so pretty on homemade bread…

And now, I’m pooped. And a tummy full of warm soup and bread doesn’t help!

But, at the end of the day, I think we just might have the most delicious compost in town.

I hope I’ve spread the made-from-scratch inspiration!

‘Nite, all!

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What’s your favorite thing to make from scratch?

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Filed under Green Living, Recipes & Food

A few comfort foods…

What’s on the breakfast menu this fine, fall Sunday morning?

Grilled almond butter and banana sammitches, with a drizzle of honey! :Dbrushed with a touch of coconut oil for a crispy outside!

Mmmmmmmm……comfort food!

Admittedly, this is not what we usually eat for breakfast. But I came home on Friday to find a large box waiting for me, and when I opened it? 2 loaves of Nature’s Pride bread! (Thanks, Foodbuzz Featured Publisher Program!)

One loaf of oatmeal and one loaf of honey wheat with fiber:

Yeah, it’s kind of weird to get bread in the mail. We don’t eat a lot of bread, and when I do buy it I usually end up giving half a loaf to the birds. But, I found myself determined not to waste my special delivery “Bread-O-Gram!” So, grilled sammies it was.

Nature’s Pride bread has no trans fat, no artificial colors or flavors, and no HFCS. BO-nus! The oatmeal has 1g fiber per serving, the whole wheat, 2g.

In a perfect world, I’d choose an organic bread with tons of fiber, but you know how that goes. I’d say Nature’s Promise makes a darn good loaf.

So, since I had leftover pumpkin from my little punkin pancake recipe, and quite a bit of bread to utilize, I felt inspired to make some Pumpkin Butter! I love the feeling of making use of what’s already in my kitchen. (Makes me feel so thrifty!)

I combined 3 cups pureed pumpkin, 1/2 cup apple cider, 2 tsp cinnamon, 1/2 tsp nutmeg and 1/4 cup pure maple syrup, brought it to a boil, then reduced heat and simmered, stirring frequently, until it reached the desired thickness.

And there you have it! Easy peasy Nature’s Pride bread with homemade pumpkin butter. Good for mommy and daddy, and good for baby! I think warm toast with spicy pumpkin qualifies as comfort food, too.

Actually, after last year’s food restrictions with my gestational diabetes, just being able to enjoy the pumpkin harvest this year is pretty darned comforting! Enjoying it along with my boy is about as good as it gets.

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What’s your favorite comfort food?

….and here’s a simple but loaded question: Do you eat much bread?

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Filed under Product & Service Reviews, Recipes & Food

Mommy and Me Recipe: Fall Veggie Crisp

Since returning to work full-time, I’ve learned one thing for sure: Anything I can do on the weekend to help myself out during the week makes me my own best friend when workdays kick my butt. So, Sunday has become the day to cook!

Today, I made this yumminess with some of the last garden tomatoes, to be delivered to my father-in-law…

…and these belated birthday cupcakes for my very understanding husband…

(although I do admit to using this, enhanced with some applesauce and dried cranberries:)

Also in the lineup: the filling for our favorite Quesadilla Casserole, so the huz can just layer it with tortillas in a casserole dish tomorrow night and bake. What a team we make! :D

But my favorite creation of the day was a new Mommy and Me Recipe

So many fall veggies, so little time…what to do? For some reason, fall makes me crave a crisp, crumb topping on everything, and apple crisps are so last week. So, why not a veggie crisp? 

My handy dandy food processor made quick work of 1 butternut squash, 1 large sweet potato, 3 parsnips, 5 carrots and 1/2 large sweet onion. (Nice, even slices make for nice, even baking!)

I set aside some of each veggie to be baked for little man, and added just a little water. (Hold the onions and broth, please! At least for now…) 

I poured one can of  low-sodium veggie broth into the dish until it was about 1/2″ below the level of the vegetables. 

The “cross your fingers and hope it’s good” topping consisted of: 1 cup whole wheat bread crumbs, 1/3 cup old fashioned rolled oats, a Tbsp of amaranth (just because :) ), a light handful of chopped, fresh parsley, rosemary and thyme, and a sprinkle of sea salt.

Both dishes were baked at 375 degrees for about 40 minutes, covered (or until the broth bubbled up through the crumbs and veggies were soft.)

I just love filling the house with the scents of fall, and this recipe did just that. It was easy, yet satisfying and comforting, and made use of lots of different veggies. It also made lots of beautiful puree, although the orange was INTENSE, so I added a bit of applesauce to take it down a notch. (Just sounded good to me, and baby boy seemed to agree!)

Which brings me to my Bonus Tip of the Day: When baby flings a big spoonful of pure orangetasticness onto your white carpet, try a little bit of Lulu’s in the Fluff!

Good as new! ;) Let the workweek begin!

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How do you balance home and work life? Do you do anything on your days off to help yourself out on busier days?

Does the onset of fall make you crave anything specific? 

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Filed under Parenting & Family, Recipes & Food, The Everyday

Simple, Beautiful, Whole Foods

I don’t eat whole foods exclusively, but I definitely take advantage of their wonderful simplicity whenever I have the opportunity.

One of my favorite things about eating whole foods is the appreciation I’ve gained for natural, beautiful, single ingredients

Like these tiny little organic potatoes I purchased from a local farmer…

There was a time when I would have fiddled with these potatoes, adding ingredients until they were unrecognizable.

No more.

Now, I know that letting these babies shine on their own, roasted with just a touch of olive oil and sea salt, is what appeals to me most.

Sometimes, a single, perfect ingredient can really help take a few others to a whole new level. 

For example, the beautiful bright red tomato from our garden that, when combined with our basil, garlic and yellow pear tomatoes (along with a bit of fresh mozz) took our quickie pizza from merely “good” to “Let’s make another one!”

And once in a while, a very special magic happens, and a few of these simple ingredients that are so perfect on their own come together to create a whole foods masterpiece. (Which is exactly what happened when I checked my inbox and found this Guacamole Salad recipe from Katie at Health for the Whole Self. Thanks, Katie! I just happened to have all the ingredients on hand, although in different colors…)

In case you haven’t noticed, eating clean, natural, whole foods makes me downright giddy.

The only thing that makes me giddier (giddier?!) is the hope that I can pass on an apprecation for whole foods to my boy.

On that note, I’m off to the garden to go find some more! It’s a stellar September day, with a little sun and a little breeze, and there are lots of butternuts and beets in the garden, waiting patiently to be roasted for this little one…who, incidentally, turns 10 months old today! 

He’s far cuter than my computer, so today I’m all his.

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Do you try to incorporate “whole foods” into your everyday diet? Is there a whole ingredient (veg, fruit, grain, etc.) that, in it’s simplicity and perfection, you just LOVE?


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Filed under Green Living, Home & Garden, Parenting & Family, Recipes & Food