Monday, February 9, 2015
During my growing-up years, my family never ate avocados. I don't think I even knew what one was, if you want to know the truth.
But somewhere in my adult years, I had my first taste of guacamole and I loved it. It wasn't something I had often, but when I did, it was always a treat.
Several years ago, however, I developed some sort of sensitivity to avocados. One day after eating half of one for lunch, I had horrible stomach cramps and nausea for the next 8 hours. Didn't associate it with the avocado, just thought it was some sort of bug I picked up.
A few weeks later, the exact same thing happened. I realized the avocado connection and made the sad decision to eliminate them from my diet.
One time 2 years ago, I had a small bit of guacamole with a Mexican meal, like just a tablespoon or two, thinking that such a small amount surely wouldn't bother me. Same thing happened. Stomach cramps and nausea for 7-8 hours. Guacamole is definitely out of the picture for me. Boo.
So when I saw a recipe for Brocomoli on my assigned Secret Recipe Club blog for the month, I just had to try it.
I had the pleasure of browsing around Learning Patience this month, where Corey blogs about running and fitness, dealing with Type 1 diabetes, world travel, and of course, lots of food!
I would love to try her Maple Glazed Pork Tenderloin, Grilled Romaine Veggie Salad, and I actually have the ingredients waiting in the fridge to make this luscious Mascarpone Cheesecake with Almond Crust.
But the Brocomoli was too tempting. I whipped it up in about 15 minutes and dove in. It's delicious!
Okay, so the kids didn't go crazy for it, but Grant and I declared it a real winner. Grant was skeptical at first, and although he won't replace guacamole in HIS diet for this dip, he was really impressed at how tasty it is and especially happy that I can have it too. :)
We ate it with crackers and corn chips, and Corey suggested using it as a spread for sandwiches too, which I'm sure would be great.
from Rebekah's Family, Food, and Fun
1 small head of broccoli, cut into florets (use organic if possible)
juice of half a small lemon (I forgot to buy a lemon, used 1 T. bottled lemon juice)
zest of half a lemon
4 ounces low fat cream cheese
1/4 cup sour cream
1 small bunch of green onions, diced
1 tsp. onion powder
1/8 tsp. garlic powder
1/8 tsp. cayenne pepper
1 clove garlic
1/4 tsp. sumac (optional - I didn't use)
Salt and pepper to taste
Steam broccoli until tender.
Combine all ingredients in food processor and blend thoroughly.
Store in the refrigerator and enjoy!
Note: Can be served hot or cold. Serve with crackers, chips, pita bread, as a spread for sandwiches, etc.
Source: Learning Patience
Monday, February 2, 2015
Personal note first:
Our Christmas was lovely and we've been particularly blessed with good health this winter - for which I am exceedingly grateful. I don't know how many of our friends have suffered through the flu. We do not get flu shots...but we do take lots of Vitamin D and C, try to eat healthy, get plenty of rest, and take probiotics.
My newest health kick is water kefir. I bought some grains from someone at our Azure Standard drop-off and have been brewing it ever since. We flavor it with fruit juice and call it homemade soda. :) The kids and I drink some every day and I'm convinced it's helping us stay healthy. What an inexpensive way to get probiotics!
Next step is milk kefir. I'm a little hesitant about it, since I've heard it's runnier and more tart than plain yogurt, which none of us like to begin with....but I guess you can make smoothies and not notice the taste too much. I'm still deliberating on that one.
So I'm a little late in posting....but I made these scrumptious cookies for an exchange before Christmas and just fell in love with them.
Featuring a soft and chewy texture, a slight coffee flavor accentuating the chocolate, and a sweet peppermint kick in each bite, this is a fabulous recipe for Christmas, Valentine's, or anytime you're craving a sweet treat.
Too bad they don't have probiotics too.....or I'd make them a lot more often! :)
Peppermint Mocha Cookies
from Rebekah's Family, Food, and Fun
Yield: about 30 cookies
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 large egg plus 1 egg yolk, at room temperature
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 teaspoon peppermint extract
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
2 Tablespoons instant coffee granules
2 teaspoons cornstarch
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups peppermint baking chips, plus more for garnish if desired
1/2 cup chocolate chunks
1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips for garnish, if desired
Preheat oven to 350°F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper or silicon sheets
In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter and both sugars on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Beat in the egg and egg yolk, and then the vanilla and peppermint extracts.
In a separate medium bowl, sift the flour, cocoa powder, instant coffee granules, cornstarch, baking soda, and salt together. The coffee may not go through the sifter - if so, just dump in with the flour.
With the mixer on low, gradually add the dry ingredients, beating just until combined. Mix in the peppermint baking chips and chocolate chunks.
Using a medium cookie scoop, portion the dough onto the prepared baking sheets, spacing the cookies about 2 inches apart. Press a few peppermint baking chips and semi-sweet chocolate chips on top of each cookie ball for a garnish if desired. Bake for 10-11 minutes, or until the edges of the cookies are set.
The centers may look underdone - but don't overbake! Transfer the baking sheets to wire racks and let the cookies cool for a few minutes, then remove the cookies to the wire rack to cool completely.
Store in an airtight container at room temperature. These cookies will stay chewy for at least 3 days after baking.
Source: adapted slightly from Tracey's Culinary Adventures