Red, White & Blue 4th of July Popsicles

This time of year our desserts and/or our afternoon snacks are often something cold and frozen. I try to limit the ice cream or sorbet to treat nights and instead I do homemade fruit juice, fudge or vanilla popsicles, “nice” cream (frozen banana and mixed fruit) or slushies. These are all fun to make, the kids have lots of input, they are always game to eat these plus they are cool and refreshing. When the girls were old enough we started making home made 4th of July popsicles as an alternative to the tri-colored toxic food coloring popsicles served around this holiday (or really any time of year). We start the week before (June 28th this year) and I make a flavor a day. This year I experimented with both cherries and strawberries to see which the girls preferred. They both said in tandem that it HAD to be strawberries for 4th of July popsicles. So not wanting to waste the cherry yumminess, I used this cherry mix to make Canada Day Popsicles (July 1st) adding in some unsweetened … [Read more...]

Vegan Buckwheat Coconut Risotto

When we used to eat out more often, Risotto was one of those dishes that my husband jumped at ordering if he saw it on a menu.  It was always made with butter, cheese and sometimes a cream or milk that put this dish on the “do not eat” list for someone like me with dairy allergies.  When we first starting dating I thought he ordered this because he didn’t want to share his food, which was fine because to me it was just a bowl of rice sometimes topped with a seafood or meat.  It didn’t entice or appeal to me much but I’d be a little curious when I watched his reaction to this dish.  For the good risottos, his reaction reminded me of an Italian operatic “AHHHHHH AHHHHH”!!  Pure delight, satisfaction and culinary bliss.  He would rave about the risotto and savored it with his wine.  Was it really that good?  What makes this rice dish so amazing?  We tried a few times to make a vegan version at home but I was never blown away by it nor could I make a meal of our it.  Rob reported that … [Read more...]

Green Magic Smoothie

Smoothies are a staple in our house.  I love them because they are usually vegan milk based, a beverage one of my daughters will otherwise refuse to drink, and are filled with fresh or frozen fruit and enhanced by a few nutritional powerhouses likes greens, flax, chia, probiotics, plant-based protein, omega-3s and they’re naturally sweetened.  We often make them as a dessert with lots of frozen fruit and ice so they are more ice-cream like than a drink and we make enough that the leftovers become the kids morning smoothies.  I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE morning smoothies!  Not only for myself but for the kids it’s perfect because they sip (or often guzzle) them while we prep the rest of breakfast and it provides them with a bunch of yummy nutrients and the fiber helps keep them full through their busy mornings.  Smoothies are also a great hydration tool.  I have one twin that loves her glass of almond milk every morning, but the other kiddie barely drinks a thing unless it’s sweet.  While she … [Read more...]

Orange Creamsicle Smoothie

Wintertime is sometimes tough in the fruit department with less selection than usual. My kids and I love summer fruit (berries, stone fruit, local melons) and in winter the fruit staples at our house are organic apples, oranges, clementines or mandarins, bananas and if we are lucky the occasional box of organic strawberries. In the smoothie department I have to be a little more creative but get to throw in fresh fruits that the might not otherwise eat on their own (kiwis, pears, etc.). Did I mention my kids can be picky? Plus my kiddies are now at the age where their front teeth are wiggly, making hard fruit like apples harder to eat. Smoothies to the rescue! I make a big bottle of smoothies a few times a week so we have some on hand to drink the in morning or after school. Find they are great for after school when they are sooooo starving. It buys me 5 minutes while I get them unpacked and prep a “real” snack for them. It delivers a good mix of fruit, protein, fats and calcium. … [Read more...]

Carrot Cake Cupcakes

I had bought a huge bag of organic carrots with the intention of making a fresh juice with my girls each morning mixing in the remaining veg from our garden but such plans didn’t happen! One of my babes got what we thought was just the flu but turned out to be pneumonia!! Needless to say, I didn’t have much energy to make juice, nor did I have my usual eager little girls to drink them. So we turned our garden greens into salads and smoothies and decided to add the carrots to nearly everything we cooked. We made carrot cake oatmeal, carrot fries and these delicious carrot cake cupcake muffins which everyone happy had the appetite for. Yumm!! Like many of my recipes intended for the girls I packed these cakes full of nutritional goodies. My little sickie didn’t eat much this week, but managed to devour a few of these sans (without) icing. CARROT CAKE CUPCAKES 2 cups gluten-free flour mix 1 tsp baking soda 1 tsp baking powder 1 tsp cinnamon ¼ tsp all-spice ¼ tsp ground … [Read more...]

Chocolate Veggie Brownies

I have made my uber healthy-protein packed brownies for the kids before sometimes these concoctions haven’t passed the friend test. Meaning my kiddies will eat them, but their friends who are used to commercial brownies weren’t as keen on them.  So, like many of my creations, I tried to tweak my recipes to make something more “normal” while still keeping to my healthy cooking goals (real food, no gluten, no dairy, low sugar, with optional eggs and nuts).  After a few tries I hit a home run as one tester reported back with these ones! Not only are they dense but moist and very chocolaty (plus it contains 2 veggies) my kids and their friends went nuts for these. Needless to say I didn’t tell the friends these delights contained spinach! This dessert is surprisingly quick to make, low in calories and high in taste and feel like a decadent treat! Chocolate (Veggie) Brownies 2 flax eggs (2 tbsp flaxmeal + 6 tbsp warm water) or 2 egg whites (optional) 1 cup spinach, fresh ½ cup … [Read more...]

Pomegranate Kanten

Tonight I realize I need to go grocery shopping very badly. I am out of nearly everything and have nothing for the most important part of dinner.... dessert!! Oh, no! Luckily we still had a few pomegranate seeds, a little cherry juice and vegan milk.  Literally not much else though.  Brainstorming with what I could do with these meager items, I remembered a dessert hubbie and I used to on a regular basis at one of our favorite restaurants in Union Square, Souen.  Souen is a macrobiotic restaurant that we used to go before we had kids, almost every week after work.  It was near my favorite yoga studio so I loved going out for an uber healthy, clean macrobiotic meal after a great class.  They had always had such delicious food these simple but incredibly delicious desserts.  Kanten a pudding like dessert was one of our favorites. Kanten is a staple of a macrobiotic cuisine. It’s an easy, quick to make dessert, made with agar flakes and fruit juice. It’s essentially a gelatinous … [Read more...]

Fig Bars

We have been so busy the past few weeks…or months.  I feel like summer flew by quicker than any other summer.  Summer time is usually when I do new recipes with all the wonderful, seasonal, fresh fruits and veg but this year I haven’t had much time to really go through my favorite blogs or websites or experiment very much.  I’ve been relying on my old favorites given I know so many of them by heart and they are usually really quick to make.  Rob was also away a lot this summer so when it came time to packing lunches and snacks for camp I wanted to pack things I knew the kids like.  I’m often surprised by what they don’t love.  I have made cookies or other sweets in the past that they were like “ehhh” about things the adults loved.  So given all this, not many new sweet creations or treats came out of my kitchen lately. I am a HUGE fan of The Sprouted Kitchen.  Her site and book are so beautiful and the photos are incredibly beautiful, delicate, and sooooo mouth-watering.  I have … [Read more...]

Cherry Cafoutis

This year Mimi’s (or “Maman’s” as us grandkids always called her) would have been 101.  She passed nearly 5 years ago now but every year I remember her and all the joy she brought into our lives.  One of my daughters has recently begun asking a lot of questions about Mimi. What she was like?  Did she ever meet them? Do I miss her? While we did live far from Mimi I spoke with her often on the phone. We also skyped with her so she could see the girls when they were so tiny! She couldn’t get over it, seeing the girls from so far away. A woman of her generation could never have imagined such a thing as video conferencing. Her amazement was almost as wonderful as her excitement to see my little babies. My girls were her first great-grandchildren and sadly the only ones she had a chance to meet.  We took them overseas to see her when they were only 8 months old. I was very sleep deprived and exhausted from a VERY busy time at work and the early morning feeding times with the girls but … [Read more...]