Sunday, October 7, 2012

Cara's Birdseed Granola

Combine in large bowl:
1/2 c. each: old fashioned oats, crisp rice cereal, cornflakes, steel cut oats
1/4 c. each: barley flakes, rye flakes, quinoa, oat bran, buckwheat groats
1 T. each: hulled millet, poppy seeds
spices as desired: cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, etc.

Combine and toast for 5-15 minutes in a 275 degree oven:
1 T. sesame seeds
1/4 c. - heaped - sweetened coconut flakes

Combine first two mixtures

Microwave until at a rolling boil: (1+minute)
1/4 c. olive oil
1/2 c. honey
1 t. flavoring (vanilla, almond, etc.)

Pour this over the first mixture, and stir to coat

Bake at 300 for about 1 hour (when it starts to brown is when I take it out of the oven, usually), stirring every 15 minutes.

While baking, combine and set aside:
1/4 c. pumpkin seeds (they were green, so I think they were raw)
1/8 c. - heaped - each: raw, chopped walnuts, pecans, almonds

Add whatever nuts, seeds or dried fruits you like to the baked granola
allow to cool, stirring every so often to avoid clumping
store so that it stays dry.

For my first batch, I used some hulled barley as well as both some hard and soft wheat berries.  One of these is really hard to chew, so I didn't include them in the recipe.

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Oh My Carrot Cake

I started here:

2 c. all purpose flour
2 t. baking powder
1 1/2 t. salt
2 1/2 t. cinnamon
4 eggs
1 1/2 c. vegetable oil
2 c. white sugar
2 3/4 c. shredded carrots
1 (8oz) can crushed pineapple, drained
3/4 c. chopped walnuts
1 c. flaked coconut

I cut the recipe in half and still made 12 muffins.

Here's my recipe:

Mix together:
1/2 c. unbleached flour
1/2 c. whole wheat pastry flour
1 t. baking powder
3/4 t. baking soda
1/2 t. salt
1 1/4 t. cinnamon

Separately, mix:
2 eggs
1/2 c. unsweetened applesauce (one of the single serve containers)
1/4 c. olive oil
1/4 c. honey (maybe a bit more?)
1/4 c. white sugar
3 shredded carrots
1/2 c. coconut

Combine two mixtures, bake at 325 for 35 minutes.

Verdict: this is a keeper.

Veggie Quesidilla

Today's invention!  I opted to serve the kids quesidillas for lunch, but wanted some veggies with mine.

So, I included steamed broccoli, thin wedges of tomato and some ham chunks.  Jeffry's included some onion.  Mushrooms would have been good too.

Very tasty.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Bread Pudding

In bread machine:
(1 lb. loaf)
5 oz. rice milk
1 egg
2 T. butter in small chunks
2 oz. honey
1/2 t. salt
2 c. whole wheat flour
2 c. white flour
1/2 package active dry yeast

Once it was baked, I cut it into 1 inch pieces and baked those for 15 minutes at 350 to dry them out. Otherwise, make the bread a day in advance and let it dry out.

Heat oven to 350
In saucepan over medium heat until butter is melted and milk is hot;
1 c. rice milk
2 T. butter

1/4 c. sugar (I can't remember if I used brown or white)
3/4 t. cinnamon
3/4 t. nutmeg
1 egg

Coat 3 c. bread in with the cinnamon mixture, then add the milk mixture. Pour into ungreased casserole dish, place that in a 9x13 pan and fill with 1 inch of boiling water.

Bake for 40 minutes.

Meanwhile ....
In heavy saucepan, stir constantly until it boils
1/2 c. brown sugar
4 T. butter
2 T. brandy

(I don't recall getting the sauce to not be gritty, but nobody's complained.)

Monday, August 6, 2012

Zucchini Carrot Muffins

1 1/2 c. whole wheat pastry flour
1 t. baking powder
1/2 t. baking soda
1/4 t. salt
1/4 c. flaxseed
1/4 c. chopped walnuts
1 shredded zucchini
1 shredded carrot

1/2 c. honey
1/4 c. brown sugar
1 egg
1/4 c. plain yogurt (I used Greek style)
1/4 c. canola oil

Combine two mixtures, add nuts if desired.

Bake at 350 for about 30 minutes, until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

Note: I did this with only 1 c. flour initially, but it was too soupy.  If you cut down on the liquid ingredients (reduce the amount of oil, etc.), you can cut down on the flour too.

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Taco Bean Soup

In a saucepan:

1/2 c. salsa (I use Salsa Lisa)
1 chopped tomato
1 c. taco beans (see recipe here:
1/2 c. water

Bring to a boil, then simmer for a while.

Serve with guacamole, sour cream or plain yogurt, shredded cheese, onion, taco chips, quesadillas, etc.

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Taco Beans

This one is for Tracy ....

Here's where I got the idea:

Soak 2 lbs. beans (of your choice) overnight  (I used pinto)

In slow cooker:
2 cans of unsalted sweet corn (that seems to be an oxymoron)
1 chopped sweet onion (all I had on hand, or wanted to bother chopping)
2 rounded teaspoons minced garlic (I get the stuff in the jar)
1 heaping Tablespoon chili powder
the rest of the jar of cumin (just kidding!), 1 1/2 Tablespoons cumin
2 teaspoons oregano
1 Tablespoon (or less?) salt (I used sea salt)
1 1/2 teaspoons pepper
1 teaspoon Hickory Smoked Salt
6 cups water

Cook on High for at least 4 hours.  You may want to have the lid off to let some of the liquid evaporate, or just use less to begin with. (smiles)

See how sassy I get when trying to explain my "dump" cooking?

Monday, May 28, 2012

Banana "Ice Cream"

A friend said she gave her kids ice cream for breakfast one day.  I had to check it out.  Banana "Ice Cream" is pureed frozen bananas.  I melted peanut butter and drizzled it over the top, then sprinkled some mini chocolate chips on it.  Guilt free dessert for myself and the Littles (our two younger kids).  We'll probably be doing this again (and again, and again).

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Grandma's Birdseed Bread

My mom makes wonderful rolls and cinnamon rolls from a recipe she got from my Grandma Dorothy Maude (Isn't that a great name?)

However, being a health-nut wannabe, I'm changing it up.

In breadmaker:

1 1/4 c. WARM rice milk
(the original calls for a mixture of milk and water, which I suppose could be all milk with the various percentages of milk that we have now)
1 egg
1/4 c. butter in small pieces
1/4 c. honey
(the original recipe uses sugar)
1 t. salt
1 3/4 c. whole wheat flour
1 3/4 c. unbleached all purpose flour
1/2 c. oat bran
(the original recipe is straight up white flour)
1 package quick rise yeast
1/2 c. birdseed mix 
(this is a mixture of whole groats, rye flakes, wheat flakes; as well as flax, poppy, sesame, sunflower, millet and pumpkin seeds)

I set the machine on the "dough" cycle, and once the machine had made the dough, I shaped it, let it rise until double, then baked it at 375 for 25 minutes, maybe a bit longer.

Note: the dough was sticky, so I added a bit more flour just to shape it.  I think adding too much flour is part of the reason I've not succeeded with a soft loaf previously.

We really liked it.  I finally made a bread that was soft, sweet and kinda healthy.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Gallo Pinto

I'm loving some of the recipes I'm using with my students.  Teaching cooking is making me venture out more than I did before.  Here's a link to a recipe from Costa Rica:

Monday, February 13, 2012


I'm trying this:

I did substitute 1/2 of the flour with whole wheat.  I also used the bread machine to mix and proof the dough.

They're okay.  Not as soft as I'd like, but that's probably my fault.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Baking Day

Zucchini Bread:

Banana Bread:
I've blogged this one before, but it's oh, so good, that I just had to do it again.

Monster Cookies:
My daughter brought the recipe home from her aunts with strict instructions not to tell Heidi.  So I am sorry but I cannot share the recipe.  There are recipes on the web, but they seemed a tad bit different than the one I used.

Peppermint Bark
I melted some white chocolate chips in a double boiler, added some crushed candy canes and poured the mixture into my silicone muffin "pan".  After refrigerating, I melted some dark chocolate chips and spread that on top.

I'm still working this one out, so will try to remember to post it at a later date.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Flaxseed Muffins

I started at:

And ended up with:

2 c. whole wheat flour
1 c. oat bran

1 1/2 c. flax seed
 - - side note, mixing these together brought to mind the images from when I was growing up in Africa and we sometimes had weevils in our flour - -
3/4 t. nutmeg
1 1/2 t. cinnamon
1 T. baking powder

1/8 t. baking soda

1/2 c. honey
1 3/4 c. milk (I used rice milk and used about 1 T. lemon juice in an effort to create buttermilk)
1 c. chopped pecans

325 for 20 minutes.

I baked the first dozen and tasted them.  They were okay.  Not too sweet (it is a muffin after all, not a cupcake).  I'd add more honey next time.

For the second dozen, I added a cup of my leftover cranberry sauce from Christmas.  (see #5
This set had to bake for an hour and still weren't done.

Now that I think of it, some vanilla or almond would be good, and maybe less nutmeg.

Grains and Dips

Today's Quick Lunch:
Multigrain crackers from Trader Joe's
Multigrain Tostitos

Salsa Lisa (mild)
Roasted Red Pepper anda Artichoke Tapenade from Trader Joe's
Guacamole (see below)

1 avocado, mashed
1 clove garlic, minced
1/8 c. (approximately) sweet onion, minced
lime juice

Chicken Salad

It's a meat day!  I usually only eat meat every other day.  It's still easier for me to come up with meat meals than it is for me to come up with meatless ones.  So, as lunchtime approached today, I felt I had more options.   What to do?  Pita bread that I made last night as well as humus, but today, I can do something with meat .... hmmm.  I have chicken chunks in the freezer, so I can do chicken salad.  No celery .... oh well, I'll just use onion and ...... craisins.   Very good.

I think it was about...
1 c. chicken
1/4 c. mayonnaise
1/4 c. minced sweet onion
1/2 c. craisins

I served it in the fresh pita bread with some baby bok choy  and Campbells new Harvest Orange Tomato Soup.  I didn't think the soup was all that, but that might be because I'm getting to the point where I want to steer away from processed foods, I don't know.