New Favorite

Fresh Pear Bread

Pears, pears, pears!  I’ve overrun with pears thanks to my CSA shares this fall. They have been absolutely delicious but more than I can eat.

This recipe was simple and resulted in a moist, delicious bread great for a breakfast treat with a cup of hot coffee, tea or hot chocolate.  Due to family tastes, I omitted the nuts, but it would be delicious with walnuts or pecans!

Fresh Pear Bread
Fresh Pear Bread

FRESH PEAR BREAD

3 eggs
1-1/2 cups sugar
3/4 cup vegetable oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
4 cups finely chopped peeled ripe pears (about 4 medium)
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1 cup chopped walnuts (optional)
  • In a bowl, combine the eggs, sugar, oil and vanilla; mix well. Combine flour, baking powder, cinnamon, baking soda and salt; stir into the egg mixture just until moistened. Toss pears with lemon juice. Stir pears and walnuts into batter (batter will be thick).
  • Spoon into two greased 9-in. x 5-in. loaf pans. Bake at 350° for 55-60 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool for 10 minutes before removing from pans to wire racks. Yield: 2 loaves.

Recipe from Taste of Home

Gluten Free · New Favorite · Vegan · Vegetarian

Cruciferous Salad with Spicy Peanut Dressing

Trader’s Joe’s finally came to Denver last year and what fun we’ve had exploring their many wonderful products.  During one of my trips, they were tasting their Cruciferous Crunch Salad with mixed nuts and Spicy Peanut Vinaigrette.  Yummy in the tummy!

trader-joes-cruciferous-crunch-collection

The recipe is so simple, it doesn’t need one.  Chop the contents of the salad mix. Chop about 1 cup of mixed nuts (or nuts of your choice), and top with Trader Joe’s Asian Style Spicy Peanut Vinaigrette dressing. Toss and serve immediately.

It’s simple, delicious, and good for you.  What’s not to like?

Gluten Free · New Favorite · Vegan · Vegetarian

Strawberry, Blueberry and Spinach Salad

It’s salad time, again.  I love salad 365 days a year but with fresh produce and fruit in spring and summer, it’s the best! This salad is so simple and so delicious and you can have it anytime. Experiment with different greens, fruit and nuts and enjoy!

What a yummy patriotic salad to share this Memorial Day weekend.

STRAWBERRY AND SPINACH SALAD

Baby Spinach salad mix
1 cup fresh blueberries, rinsed and drained
1 cup fresh strawberries, rinsed, drained and sliced
1/2 cup chopped walnuts (or pecans)

 Sweet Balsamic Dressing

1.5 Tablespoons balsamic vinegar
3 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon honey
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
Salt & pepper, to taste

  • Blend salad dressing ingredients together and chill.
  • When ready to serve, toss salad with dressing and serve immediately.

Recipe from Faithfulprovisions.com

Gluten Free · Health · New Favorite · Skinny · Vegetarian

Cran-Apple Oat Cake

Gluten-free eating means I rarely eat toast, breakfast pastry, etc.  Sometimes, I just need a carb ‘fix’ and this recipe sounded delicious.  I slightly altered the original recipe and loved the results. The second time I made this recipe, I substituted blueberries for the Craisins and baked in muffin paper/tins.  I’ve shared both versions with good feedback.  I’ll even admit that I didn’t eat all of it soon enough and the last piece was a bit dry.  I thought, ‘why not put almond milk on it?’ like a bowl of oatmeal. It was delicious.

A new favorite for my gluten-free recipe box!

CRAN-APPLE OAT CAKE

2 cup old-fashioned oats
1 cup unsweetened almond milk
3 single-serving packets of Pure Stevia
2 tablespoons unsweetened applesauce
1/3 cup egg whites
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. vanilla
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 small tart apple, chopped
1/2 cup Craisins (original recipe called for cranberries)
1/2 cup chopped walnuts (optional)

  • Soak the oats in the almond milk in the refrigerator overnight.
  • In the morning, combine all ingredients.
  • Spread in greased 9-inch pie plate (or muffin tins).
  • Bake at 350 degrees for 25 minutes.

Recipe adapted from Briana-Thomas

Gluten Free · New Favorite · Vegan · Vegetarian

Mango and Avocado Black Rice Salad with Cilantro Lime Vinaigrette

One of my New Year’s Resolutions was to prepare meals primarily from my pantry and freezer until I had whittled down the food on hand. A large bag of black rice, from Costco, has been sitting there with no great recipes, until now.  I swear I hear Angels sing when I read this recipe.  It is a great salad, side dish and good enough for dessert, too. Black rice has a nutty flavor and texture which pairs beautifully with the other ingredients.  Also check out the history of black rice.

MANGO & BLACK RICE SALAD WITH CILANTRO LIME VINAIGRETTE

1 1/2 cups organic black rice
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 large ripe mango, diced
1 small ripe avocado, diced or sliced
1/4 cup roasted almonds (I used chopped pecans)
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
1/2 cup diced red onion
For the Vinaigrette:
1/4 cup freshly squeezed lime juice (about 3 limes)
1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon honey (agave nectar if vegan)
1/4 teaspoon Kosher salt
1 clove garlic, minced
2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
salt and pepper to taste
lime wedges, to garnish
  • Rinse rice in mesh strainer. Add to medium saucepan. Add 2 3/4 cups water and a pinch of salt; bring to a boil. Cover, reduce to a low simmer, and cook until rice is tender and water is absorbed about 30-40 minutes. When rice is done cooking, remove from heat and transfer to a bowl. Cool for 10 minutes before adding dressing.
  • While rice is cooking prepare the dressing: Combine lime juice, olive oil, garlic, honey (or agave), cilantro, and salt in a food processor. Process for 15-30 seconds or until dressing is combined. Once rice is done cooking and has cooled a bit, stir in dressing. Cover bowl and place in fridge for an hour or until cool and you are ready to add in the rest of the salad ingredients.
  • Before serving, toss salad again with dressing and fold in cilantro, mango, and red onion. Pour into cold salad bowls and top with roasted almonds and avocado. Garnish with a lime wedge or extra cilantro if desired. Enjoy!

Recipe by AmbitousKitchen.com

Family · Family Favorites · Home · My Roots

Oatmeal Cake just like Mom used to make

Oatmeal cake with broiled topping is truly a walk down memory lane. My Mother didn’t make this cake often, but when she did, it was a treat.

This time I decided to bake the cake in two 9×9″ pans and freeze one for later…or so I thought. While the cakes and topping were cooling and while I was trying to settle grandson, Evan, into his afternoon nap, the dogs decided to sample one of the cakes. I was so unhappy, I didn’t take the time to snap one of those naughty dog photos!

Luckily one cake remained and it was delicious! The cake is moist and the crunch topping is so yummy.  Top with a dallop of whipped cream.

Thanks, Mom for a great recipe.  And to the dogs…I’ll choose to say nothing.

OATMEAL CAKE

1 cup quick oatmeal
1 1/2 cups boiling water
1 1/2 cups flour plus 2 tablespoons flour
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup white sugar
1/2 cup shortening
2 eggs
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon baking soda

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Grease 9×13″ (or two 9×9″) cake pans.
  • Mix together oatmeal and boiling water. Let stand 20 minutes and cool.
  • Mix flour, brown sugar, white sugar, shortening, eggs, salt, cinnamon and soda. Add cooled oatmeal.
  • Bake for 30-35 minutes. Prepare topping while the cake is baking.

TOPPING:
1/4 cup milk
1/2 cup brown sugar
6 tablespoons butter
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup chopped nuts
1 cup coconut

  • Bring all ingredients to a boil. Spread topping over cake while cake and topping are hot.

  • Put cake and topping under broiler and let topping brown.

Serve warm with whipped cream.

New Favorite · Skinny · Vegan · Vegetarian

Wilted Spinach and Pine Nuts

My vegan menu continues and I wanted to have wilted spinach but with the protein of nuts.  It’s easy to forget how much spinach wilts down when cooking.   I used a 6 ounce box of spinach and the wilted spinach would serve 2 people as a side dish.

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WILTED SPINACH AND PINE NUTS

1 large bunch spinach, about 12 cups leaves
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon salt, divided
Ground black pepper
1 tablespoon pine nuts, toasted

  • Sort through spinach, discarding stems and bruised or yellow leaves. Wash spinach in plenty of cold water; if it’s sandy, wash a second time, then spin dry.

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  • Heat oil in a large sauté pan over medium-high heat.
  • Add garlic and lemon juice and sauté for 1 minute.
  • Turn the heat to high and add the spinach, 1/4 teaspoon salt and a few pinches of pepper. Wilt the spinach, tossing with tongs to coat the leaves with the hot oil and garlic. (The water left on the leaves after washing will help it to wilt quickly.)
  • Toss in the pine nuts and add salt and pepper to taste. Serve immediately.

Recipe from:  Whole Foods website

New Favorite

DUMP CAKE…decadent and sinfully simple

Dump Cake is NOT a low cal dessert but it is easy and delicious. My buddy, Jan, again shared this recipe with me. Somehow this recipe escaped me all these years and I wanted to research it’s origin. Research points to the original Heloise for this recipe, although I couldn’t confirm nor deny this fact.

What I can confirm…this is a decadent pleasure to enjoy ‘once in a blue moon.’

DUMP CAKE

1 can (21 ounce) cherry pie billing (or apple)
1 (20 ounce) can crushed pineapple
1 box yellow cake mix
1 stick margarine
1 cup chopped pecans
whipped cream

  • Place pie filling and pineapple in 9×13″ cake pan.
  • Sprinkle on top 1 box yellow cake mix.
  • Slice 1 stick margarine and place over cake mix.
  • Sprinkle 1 cup chopped pecans over the top.
  • Bake at 350 degrees for 50 minutes.
  • Serve with whipped cream and enjoy every bite!

 

Family Favorites

Cranberry Bread…tart, sweet and warm from the oven!

Cranberry Bread was a favorite of mine back in the day.  I would make several loaves to give as gifts for the holidays when I young, single and fancy-free in St. Joe, MO.  I’m glad to have this recipe back on my radar screen.  The kids loved it.  The tartness of the cranberries complimented by the sweet dough is wonderfully delicious warm from the oven with butter.

The bread freezes well to make ahead for holiday gifts.

CRANBERRY BREAD

2 cups flour, sifted
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon soda
1 cup sugar
2 tablespoons margarine, melted
3/4 cup orange juice
1 beaten egg
1 cup raw cranberries, chopped
1/2 cup chopped nuts (pecans or walnuts)

  • Sift the flour, baking powder, salt, soda and sugar. Add the orange juice, melted butter, then add beaten egg.
  • Mix well and add the chopped cranberries. Put into greased loaf pan and fill half full of batter.
  • Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour. Cool for 10 minutes and then run knife around the pan to remove loaf.

 

New Traditions

Cereal Snackeroos

Cereal Snackeroos

Last month I found myself staring at a new box of Honey-Nut Cheerios in the pantry.  The cereal was purchased for guests who decided they liked yogurt better.  Oh well…surely I can invent a creative treat…result was Cereal Snackeroos.

This treat was a hit with family, neighbors and older folks at an assisted living center.  Get creative…what’s in your pantry?

Cereal Snackeroos

3 cups Honey Nut Cheerios®
3 cups Honey Nut Grahams
1 cup Honey peanuts
1 cup diced orange candy slices (or gumdrops)
1 cup chocolate chips
1 cup Karo syrup
2/3 cup sugar
1 cup peanut butter

  • Mix the ingredients above in a large bowl.  Butter 9×13” pans.
  • In a small saucepan, combine white Karo and sugar.  Bring to boil.  Take from heat and stir in peanut butter.  Stir until smooth.
  • Pour over cereal mixture and toss to coat mixture completely.  Pour into buttered pans and let cool.  Cut into squares.  You can decorate the top of each square with an orange slice, if desired.

Snack on!