Superfood Breakfast Cookies

“I can’t cook! It’s genetic. My grandmother can’t cook, my mother can’t cook. I was raised to believe you eat because your body needs fuel for energy, so I eat super foods.” – Jada Pinkett Smith

Sometimes you just need a grab-and-go breakfast.  Filled with super foods and sweetened ever so slightly with brown sugar and honey,  these cookies might just remind you of our Super Granola, as you can swap in any add ins you like.  Change up your breakfast with these portable and healthy cookies- we guarantee them to be a hit!

Taken from Rachel Ray

3/4 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 cup all purpose flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp salt
2 tbsp butter, softened
1/4 cup brown sugar
3 tbsp honey
1 egg
1/2 cup applesauce (can substitute any pureed fruit)
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 cup oats
1/2 cup bran flakes
1/4 cup sunflower seeds
1/4 cup pumpkin seeds
1/4 cup raisins
1/4 cup chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Whisk together the flours, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt in a medium-sized bowl.

Combine the butter, sugar and honey in a bowl and beat with an electric mixer until well combined. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed. Add egg, applesauce, and vanilla, and beat until well combined. Add flour mixture and beat until well combined. With a rubber spatula, fold in the oats, cereal flakes, sunflower and pumpkin seeds, raisins and chocolate chips until just combined. The dough will be sticky.

Score the dough into four equal portions and, using wet hands, form three dough balls from each fourth, for a total of 12 cookies.

Place dough balls evenly spaced on the prepared cookie sheet. Using wet hands, slightly flatten each dough ball, as cookies will not spread as they bake.

Bake for approximately 14 minutes or until cookies are light brown and soft.

Let them rest on the cookie sheet for 10 minutes, and then transfer to cooling rack to cool completely.

Savoury Fried Brown Rice

“Rice is great if you’re really hungry and want to eat two thousand of something.” – Mitch Hedberg

Fried rice is a great staple dish to know how to make.  We use leftover brown rice to beef up the nutrition in this recipe – we find it gives a nice nutty flavour and holds its texture well.  If you don’t have leftover rice, make a fresh batch and spread it in a single layer on a tray and pop it in the fridge for about 30 minutes.  Cold rice and a hot buttery pan are the key to making the perfect crispy bite. 

Serves 3-4

2 cups brown rice, cooked and cold
one medium onion diced
2 carrots, peeled diced and par boiled
1 cup green peas
6 green onions, sliced thinly
2 eggs
¼ cup low-sodium soy sauce
2 tsp butter
1 tsp oyster sauce
salt and pepper

Heat 1 tsp butter in a hot wok.  Add the eggs and quickly scramble, breaking it up into little bits. Once it is cooked remove it from the wok.  Add the remaining butter and stir in the onions, carrots, peas and sauté for 2-3 minutes.  Add the rice and let it get crispy.  You will hear it sear.  Let it cook for 1 minute.  Add the cooked egg back into the wok, along with the green onions and soya sauce.  Add the oyster sauce.  Season to taste with salt and pepper, and additional soya sauce if you like.



Healthier Waffles

“Waffles are just awesome bread.” – John Green

When you can make homemade whole-wheat batter with the added kick of wheat germ, you might convince yourself to whip up this delicious breakfast treat a little more often!  Cutting up waffles in manageable pieces makes them a perfect finger food for babies.  The batter can be prepared ahead of time and kept in the fridge for up to two days.

Serves 4

½ cup all purpose flour
½ cup whole-wheat flour
2 tbsp wheat germ
2 tsp sugar
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp cinnamon
¼ tsp salt
1 cup milk
2 tbsp butter, melted and slightly cooled
1 egg
2 tsp vanilla extract
1/3 cup water

In a large mixing bowl, combine the flours, wheat germ, sugar, baking powder, cinnamon and salt.  In a small mixing bowl, beat together the milk, butter, egg and vanilla extract.  Pour the wet mixture into the dry ingredients and stir just to combine (lumps are ok, never overmix waffle batter).  Let the batter rest on the counter for 10 minutes.

Turn on the waffle maker and preheat your oven to 200 degrees F.  Add 1/3 cup of water to the batter and stir slightly.  Use a non-stick spray to coat your waffle maker and pour the batter into it (refer to your model instructions for the amount of batter to use).  Keep the waffles warm in the oven while you make the rest.



Healthy Quinoa and Zucchini Fritters

“You don’t need a silver fork to eat good food.” – Barbara Johnson

This is a perfect finger food for foodie babies using leftover quinoa! Each fritter with packed with the wholesome goodness of quinoa and zucchini, and the parmesan cheese gives it a tasty bite! Alternatively, you can serve this fritter as an appetizer with a dollop of crème fraiche.

Adapted from The Scrumptious Pumpkin

Make about 12 fritters

2 zucchini, grated
1 tsp salt
1 cup quinoa, cooked
½ cup parmesan cheese, grated
1 egg, beaten
1 tsp garlic, minced
4 green onions, fine chopped
2 tbsp olive oil
Salt and pepper

In a small mixing bowl, sprinkle salt over the grated zucchini. Let this sit for a few minutes and then transfer to a strainer. The salt will help extract the liquid from the zucchini. After 15 minutes, give the zucchini a squeeze to remove all the moisture and transfer to a medium-sized bowl.

Combine all the remaining ingredients with the zucchini. Form into ¼-in thick patties. Heat olive oil in a large pan over medium heat. Cook fritters on a single layer for 4-6 minutes. Flip and cook for an additional 5 minutes.

Lemon Ricotta Cookies with Lemon Glaze

“I suppose I could have stayed home and baked cookies and had teas.” – Hillary Clinton

These cookies are like dainty little cakes. The taste of ricotta is smooth and subtle and the lemon glaze is good even on its own!  Make them as part of your ‘something sweet’ at your brunch table or jazz up your afternoon tea.  They are highly impressive but a cinch to whip up!

Taken from Giada De Laurentis

Makes 44 cookies

2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 stick unsalted butter, softened
2 cups sugar
2 eggs
1 (15-ounce) container whole milk ricotta cheese
3 tablespoons lemon juice
1 lemon, zested

1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
3 tablespoons lemon juice
1 lemon, zested

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

In a medium bowl combine the flour, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.

In the large bowl combine the butter and the sugar. Using an electric mixer beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add the eggs, 1 at a time, beating until incorporated. Add the ricotta cheese, lemon juice, and lemon zest. Beat to combine. Stir in the dry ingredients.

Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper. Spoon the dough (about 2 tablespoons for each cookie) onto the baking sheets. Bake for 15 minutes, until slightly golden at the edges. Remove from the oven and let the cookies rest on the baking sheet for 20 minutes.

Combine the powdered sugar, lemon juice, and lemon zest in a small bowl and stir until smooth. Spoon about 1/2-teaspoon onto each cookie and use the back of the spoon to gently spread. Let the glaze harden for about 2 hours.

Maple Dijon Pork Chops

“You can never put too much pork in your mouth as far as I’m concerned” – Lewis Black

Need a new way to bring a boring piece of pork chop to life? Pull out your slow cooker and you’ll be amazed at what can be accomplished! Pork chops are first seared and then dumped into your slow cooker along with a maple syrup infused glaze.  Serve something green on the side and dinner is served!

Taken from  Eat, Live, Run

2 servings

2 large bone-in pork chops
1 large onion, chopped
3 tbsp pure maple syrup
2 tbsp dijon mustard
1/4 cup cider vinegar
salt and pepper
1 tbsp vegetable oil

Heat up the oil in a large skillet over high heat. When hot, add the pork chops and sprinkle generously with salt and pepper. Sear both sides of chops over high heat (about 2 minutes per side) then transfer to your Crock Pot.

Lower the heat to medium low and add the onions. Cook until onions are just starting to soften then add the cider vinegar, maple syrup, mustard, salt and pepper. Cook for 2 more minutes and then pour sauce over chops in the slow cooker.

Cook on low for 6-7 hours. Serve chops drizzled generously with sauce.

Lemony Garlic Aioli

“I could talk food all day.  I love good food.” – Tom Brady

Bring some flair to your next batch of homemade fries with this basic aioli sauce. We like to toss the garlic in the oven at the same time as the fries, as it emerges with a sweet mild flavour and a beautiful pate-like consistency.

Serves 3-4

1 head of garlic, top sliced off
1 tsp olive oil
1 cup full fat yoghurt
2 tbsp mayonnaise
½ lemon, squeezed
kosher salt and pepper

Heat oven to 425 F.  Place the garlic on a sheet of aluminum foil.  Sprinkle with salt and olive oil.  Wrap the foil around the garlic to make a bundle.  Place in the middle rack of the oven for approximately 45 minutes.

Remove the garlic bundle and use tongs to spread the foil.  The garlic should appear brown and will be very soft.  Using the tip of a knife or small tongs, gently lift each garlic clove out of its peel and place in a medium-sized mixing bowl.  Using a fork, mash the garlic.  Set the bowl aside to allow the garlic to cool completely.

Once cooled, add the remaining ingredients.  Season to taste.

Thinking of Purchasing a Le Creuset Dutch Oven? A Kitchen Tool Review

Do you want to know which tool we think is the prettiest and most useful kitchen tool we own? If you guessed that beautiful enameled French Dutch oven, Le Creuset, then you are right! Le Creuset is the one kitchen vessel we gravitate towards on a daily basis more often than any other.

We consider this beautiful Dutch oven best suited for making braises, soups, stews, and even homemade bread! We love the fact that it so easily transitions from your stovetop to oven. You will rarely find yourself in a predicament where everything has stuck to the bottom because it allows for even heat distribution. Its coating with enamel is a testament to its durability. This technology allows you to brown very easily, which is so necessary for flavor production when making stews or braising. Every cook likes an appliance that cleans up easy. Your Le Creuset Dutch oven just requires hot soap and water!

Once again, this essential piece of cookware comes with a hefty price tag. Some might complain about the weight of the pot, however we feel it be a sign of its strength and durability. Other consumers happen to prefer brands such as the Staub for its design and lid handle. Of course, there are so many affordable brands out there as well, from Mario Batali to Martha Stewart. Although reviewers say they tend to discolor and chip faster, so be sure to do your research to determine where they are made. Ultimately, our Dutch oven is proudly displayed on our stovetop, getting multiple uses throughout the day, and we wouldn’t think to have it any other way!

Here’s a fabulous dish you can make today using your Dutch Oven:

Beef Short Ribs

“I cook with wine. Sometimes I even add it to the food.” -W.C. Fields

There really is nothing better than a one pot dish that warms your soul.  This recipe is not only a great low carb entree, it’s also perfect for entertaining. The slow braising in the oven is key here as it allows the meat to simply fall right off the bone.

beef short ribs
Braised to perfection…

Adapted from Ina Garten’s Beef Short Ribs

Serves 6

6 beef short ribs, trimmed of fat
kosher salt
freshly ground pepper
1/4 cup good olive oil
1 leek, cleaned and large-diced white part only
1 1/2 cups chopped onion (2 onions)
4 cups large-diced celery (6 large stalks)
2 carrots, peeled and large-diced
3 garlic cloves, minced
2 tablespoons tomato paste
2 cups of dry red wine
Fresh rosemary sprigs
Fresh thyme sprigs
6 cups beef stock

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.  Place the short ribs on a sheet pan, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and roast for 15 minutes.  Remove from the oven.  Reduce the oven temperature to 300 degrees.

Meanwhile, heat the olive oil in a large Dutch oven and add the leek, onion, celery and carrots and cook over medium-low heat for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.  Add the garlic and cook for another 2 minutes.  Add the tomato paste and wine, bring to a boil and cook over high heat until the liquid is reduced by half, about 10 minutes.  Add 1 teaspoon salt and 1 teaspoon pepper.  Tie the rosemary and thyme together with kitchen twine and add to the pot.

Place the roasted ribs on top of the vegetables in the Dutch oven and add the beef stock.  Bring to a simmer over high heat.  Cover the Dutch oven and bake for 2 hours or until the meat is very tender.

Carefully remove the short ribs from the pot and set aside.  Discard the herbs and skim the excess fat.  Cook the vegetables and sauce over medium heat for 20 minutes, until reduced.  Put the ribs back into the pot and heat through.  Serve with the vegetables and sauce.

Strawberry Stuffed Muffins

“Oh yeah.  It’s the best part.  It’s crunchy, it’s explosive, it’s where the muffin breaks free of the pan and sort of (makes hand motions) does it’s own thing.  I’ll tell you.  That’s a million dollar idea right there.  Just sell the tops.” – Elaine, from Seinfeld

Strawberry stuffed muffins.  Have you heard of anything better? Tyler makes these muffins kid friendly, as you have the option of making mini muffins or regular ones.  We opted for the adult version, but don’t worry, your child will still be satisfied! The tablespoon of baking powder is key here, as it creates that beautiful muffin dome and the strawberry inside each one is a nice and juicy surprise!  Happy Valentines Day to you!

Taken from Start Fresh by Tyler Florence

Makes 12 *

2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1 cup granulated sugar
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 eggs, lightly beaten
1 cup whole milk
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
12 medium strawberries, halved
1/2 cup confectioners’ sugar
2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice

Preheat oven to 400°F. Line a 12 cup muffin tin with paper liners. In a large bowl, whisk together flour, granulated sugar, baking powder, and salt. In a large measuring cup, whisk together eggs, milk, butter, and vanilla. Add milk mixture to flour mixture and stir just until well blended. Scoop batter into prepared muffin cups, filling each 2/3 full. Top each with 2 strawberry halves. Bake muffins until tops are golden and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, 18-20 minutes. Cool in pan for 10 minutes before glazing. In a small bowl, mix confectioners’ sugar with lemon juice (add a little milk to reach consistency if needed) and stir until smooth. Drizzle muffins with glaze and allow to cool completely.

*To make 24 mini muffins, bake for 10-12 minutes and top each muffin with a strawberry halve.