Like many other moms with young children, I have to be creative when it comes to vegetables. Not only does our food have to have a lot of flavor, but it should preferably be the consistency of baby food. We seem to be much more successful when they are either pureed as a condiment, frozen or mixed into a drink. Recently, I tried combining applesauce and pumpkin to make a frozen treat that tastes like pumpkin pie. We have now made several batches. The boys all love it! I don’t get upset when they ask for seconds or thirds and they get to have a naturally sweet treat. I would call this success a win for all parties involved!
Happy weekend! Our family cannot get enough pork! We found our favorite pork recipe in a modern translation of a 16th century French cookbook and served it for our wedding reception. But that is a recipe for another day. This recipe however is an variation using beer and rosemary. We made the photographed meal earlier this week and ate it two nights in a row. Pork is one of the few leftovers my family will eat and not complain about. The smell of the garlic and rosemary roasting on a cold, snowy, miserable day is a wonderful treat at the end of a long day. Continue reading
Following a trip to our local library, my husband brought home Isaac Hayes’ cookbook, Cooking with Heart and Soul. His recipe for Superbowl Sunday Beer Glazed Ham looked like something we would heartily enjoy. We first tried it using a Christmas ale and studding the ham with cloves. The beer was a little overpowering and while delicious, we decided that we were not big fans of the cloves. The next time we made it, I used a large bone-in ham. The bone-in ham was half the price and we have the ham bone as an added bonus for making soup or peas/beans. Instead of the cloves, we used paprika and a light lager beer. This time the result was perfect for our family’s preferences. A departure from the traditional beer-glazed ham recipes I found, it is nonetheless delicious! Taz is enjoying his leftover ham sandwich as I am writing this post.
I have always loved Bay based fragrances and last winter a friend asked me to create a bay rum combination that included lime. I may have enjoyed it a little too much. This holiday season, when I needed teacher gifts, I pulled out this essential oil combination to make a neutral, naturally scented shea butter soap. Continue reading
Saturday morning our family woke up to this outside.
When Taz woke up and saw all the snow, his response was, “Yay, snow! Does this mean we can have hot cocoa now?”. I had already planned on making up the hot cocoa for our Christmas gifts and for the snowy day, so we made up a batch of my personal favorite hot cocoa mix. My side of the family has requested that I include this particular recipe in their Christmas baskets for the past several years. I gave my mom and sister a sneak peak yesterday and they agreed that this is the perfect warm me up cup of hot cocoa. For me, a cup of warm, spicy cinnamon hot cocoa is the perfect way to enjoy the snow. It reminds me of childhood – thawing out in front of the fire with my hot cocoa after coming in from sledding or playing in the snow with my sister. The boys have been begging for me to make this everyday for the past week.
In my opinion, this rich milk chocolate with spicy cinnamon and the warmth of a dash of cayenne pepper is the quintessential hot cocoa mix! Continue reading
Two ladies on my gift list LOVE salted caramel chocolate! I already have our traditional hot cocoa mix ready to go for Christmas gifts, but this year I thought I would try something a little different to mix things up a bit. Continue reading
Over the summer, I started looking at ways to add more coconut oil and omega-3 vitamins into our diet. There has been some research into using omega 3 to treat autism spectrum disorders and it had been suggested by a nutritionist friend of our family’s (source). While reading through breakfast recipes on one of my favorite blogs, I came across this recipe for Chia Seed Engergy Bars. We thought the recipe with just dates, was little on the sweet side so I incorporated apricots as a sweetener and to add extra potassium. Thank you to Katie at wellnessmama.com for for incorporating both the coconut oil and omega-3 elements into one bite sized, healthy, easy to prepare pick me up that we all enjoy, even the baby! My husband and I both use these first thing in the morning to help get us going and keep us going all morning long. The older boys can eat an entire batch just between the two of them! Continue reading
What to do with a container full of torn and shredded turkey? This is the question I was faced with when my mother brought over a container of Thanksgiving leftovers. I made it into a hearty turkey stew that even the boys enjoyed garnished with a little shredded Parmesan. Quick and easy, this meal can be prepped in about 10 minutes and only takes about a half an hour to cook. Continue reading
We had two very excited little boys this morning when they woke up to find our yard covered in snow and no school. As a treat, I decided to make a sweet breakfast bread. I didn’t have any overly ripe bananas on hand but I did have about half a quart of leftover Cranberry Chutney. I altered my grandmother’s banana bread recipe by making a few substitutions and adding extra eggs for a higher protein content. It was a hit so I thought I’d share.
Our family has a Thanksgiving tradition of assigning a dish to bring for our gathering. Every year for the past decade or so I have made cranberry chutney. The recipe has changed a little over the years but this year I think is the best change I’ve made. It is kid friendly (without the liquor, baby friendly with maple syrup not honey), approved and uses a natural sweetener that even baby Pidge can enjoy. Given all the antioxidents and good nutrition in the ingredients, I have absolutely no guilt in allowing the boys to eat this with their turkey dinner or as a treat before then. As I was making this batch up last night, Pidge was my helper. He and his brother, Dragon, had to try each ingredient as I was adding them and then once everything was mixed, fussed until I gave him some to try. The two of them proceeded to polish off the chutney in the photo of the finished chutney (it was a small bowl).
This Cranberry Chutney recipe is suitable for those following natural foods diets, including the Paleo Diet. Continue reading