Monday, November 8, 2010

Buh-Bye Blogger

I have officially made the switch to wordpress.

My new site is

Monday, November 1, 2010

I Sceam, You Scream, We All Scream for Ice Cream!

Happy All Saints Day or eve of all Soul's day or post Halloween day -so many things to be celebrated today!
I'm a bit pressed for time but I just wanted to post quickly to tell you about something I made yesterday that was absolutely delicious. Homemade ice cream. But, you may be thinking "I thought you are trying to limit your dairy consumption?" Oh right, oops I forgot. Just kidding!! Of course I remember, Mr.Headache won't let me forget. This was dairy free ice cream!
   So creamy. So chocolately. So coconutty. So delicious
Regardless of if you consume dairy or not, you need to try this recipe! It only consists of 4 ingredients, too. Coconut milk, agave, coco powder, and vanilla. What could be simpler?
Absolutely delectable.

I wish I could take credit for this wonderful recipe, but sadly I cannot. I found it at The Nourishing Gourmet. Recipe here

On another note, I'm working on improving my picture quality. The pictures of the above ice cream were actually taken on my diving board. I find that natural light, as opposed to flash helps the pictures turn out better. But, seeing as I have tons of trees in my yard, sunlight is pretty limited. So the diving board was the natural choice for an ice cream photo shoot.

Any other tips for improving picture quality? Do you ever do silly stuff to make your pictures look better? (I didn't even mention the sprig of mint I added to my ice cream!)

Hope your enjoying this beautiful November day!

-Ann Claire

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Dairy? Kale?

Hey There!

So I've pretty much come to terms with the fact that I"ll never be one of those people who blogs all the time. At least not during the school year, I just don't have the time. I guess I could make time, but that would take away from other things I enjoy doing and need to do. As much as I love blogging, it's just not worth it.

Some friends and I on 80's day and Western Day this past week. This is a big deal as we usual wear uniforms!

I know everyone has different reasons for eating healthfully; my main reason for eating healthy is because I feel much better when I eat well. That being said, for many years I have had a lot of issues with headaches. I'm beginning to think that the cause of said headaches are diet related. So, I'm doing some experimenting to see what food could be causing the headaches. Currently, I'm thinking it may be dairy. I'm working on totally stopping eating dairy to see if the headaches go away. I'll let you know. Aside from the headaches, I'm leery about consuming dairy anyway. The whole idea of drinking an animal's milk seems weird to me and there are so many hormones and chemicals added to the milk that is available in stores today. So fortunately, almond milk and I are already close friends. Coconut oil and I have been growing closer in recent weeks, too.

In honor of my lack of dairy and a salute to coconut oil, I made HEAB's Oreo Truffles and boy am I glad I did! I used coconut oil instead of butter and used chocolate that did not contain dairy. These are so delicious. Seriously, even my mom who doesn't even like Oreos loves these. Even after I blended the Newman O's into a fine powder and added plenty of coconut butter, once hardened the truffles had such a fantastic texture. Overall, I love these little truffles. Thanks Heather!

Served up with a glass of almond milk. Sorry dairy, but I haven't been missing you :)

A few other recent eats

Zucchini and Spinach with Tuna

Quinoa and Turkey Stuffed Peppers

Whole Foods Inspired kale salad.
I had bought kale and couple of times and attempted kale chips without much success. I was beginning to give up hope that I would ever be a kale fan. But, the other day I was at Whole Foods and saw a delicious looking kale salad in their raw/vegan food bar. Having some kale at home that needed using up, I checked the ingredient list and decided to create my own kale salad. The result? I am now a kale fan!

Annie's Guacamole Kale Salad
1 small bunch kale (washed, dried, and torn into pieces)
1 avocado
1/4 of a red onion chopped
Juice of 1/2 lemon
Salt and Pepper
Direction: Mash up avocado with a fork and add the onion, lemon juice and salt and pepper to form a guacamole type mixture. Massage avocado mix onto the kale. Cover and refrigerate for a couple of hours. Serve and enjoy! 

1. What is your opinion on dairy consumption?
2. Favorite non-dairy recipe?
3. Are you a kale fan?

Have a glorious week!

-Ann Claire

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Score One for the Sweet Potato

Remember last post how I told you I didn't like sweet potatoes? Well, just a couple days after I wrote about that my mom made something involving sweet potatoes that I absolutely loved! What could have possibly gotten this sweet potato hatin' girl to enjoy the previously loathed starch? Thai-spiced Sweet Potato Soup. This stuff was delicious. Creamy, bursting with flavor, the perfect way to fill the tummy on brisk fall evenings.

  • 1 Tablespoon canola or peanut oil (coconut oil would probably work well too)
  • 1 onion -chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic -chopped
  • 2 teaspoons red curry paste
  • 2 pounds sweet potatoes-peeled and roughly chopped
  • 1 cup red lentils
  • 5 cups chicken or vegetable stock
  • 1 cup coconut milk
  • 3 tablespoons fish sauce
  • 2 teaspoons brown sugar (my mom says she thinks agave would work well, will be trying that next time)
  • 2 tablespoons lemon or lime juice
Heat the oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion and cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the garlic and red curry paste and cook for 1 minute, stirring constantly. Add the sweet potato, red lentils, stock, coconut milk, fish sauce, and brown sugar and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium and simmer, covered, for 20 minutes. Remove from heat and allow to cool a little. Puree the soup in two batches in a blender or food processor until smooth. Return to saucepan and stir in the citrus juice. Serve garnished with cilantro.

I highly recommend this soup. It's really so delicious; the Thai seasonings give the soup lots of flavor while the coconut milk and sweet potato contribute to the great creamy texture, not to mention add lots of flavor themselves.

What is your favorite fall food?

I"m really going to try to post more regularly in the future. I made numerous yummy dishes recently that I look forward to sharing with you. I've been experimenting with making homemade whole-wheat bread. I"m still working on perfecting the recipe but certainly be expecting that soon. I'm currently in the process of making some home made nutter butter cups, so I better go check on those. Yum!

Thanks for reading,
Ann Claire

Friday, September 24, 2010

I"m Back!

My goodness it has been over a month since I last posted. Ridiculous I tell you, ridiculous. While I could go on and on providing you a multitude of excuses for why I haven't posted I"ll spare you the boredom of reading about it. For, as a wise uncle once told me "excuses are like feet, everybody has them and they all stink." haha
A few recent eats.....
Black bean oat burger (not to dissimilar for this recipe but simplified and I kinda over blended so I added oats for textural reasons and it turned out delicious), on a bed of mashed cauliflower and topped with guacamole.

Oat flour pancakes topped with smashed strawberries (courtesy of my immersion blender) and coconut butter aka my new love.

My favorite greens topped with carrots, chicken, red onion, and banana peppers (various versions of this have been consumed many times by me in the last month). Also, if you're looking for a totally delicious salad dressing recipe check out Kelsey's Ultimate Salad good.

A new product I discovered that I really enjoy. Dairy free, soy free, nut free, preservative free, pretty much everything free. Heck, I don't even know how you could be allergic to these things. One thing they certainly aren't lacking in is yumminess! Even my dad snuck a few of these out of the freezer.

I highly recommend Sweet Nothings!

Question of the day: Are there any foods you don't like that you wish you did like?  For me, I really really wish I liked bananas and sweet potatoes. Bananas just seem like such a great fruit, so perfectly package by nature and a great base for smoothies and ice creams, a  wonderful topping for oatmeal or perfect just plain, but, by golly I just don't like them! Same with sweet potatoes; I've seen several bloggers post some good-looking recipes involving sweet potatoes that I would love try except for the fact that I don't like sweet potatoes! Do you have any foods like this? I hope one day I grow to like bananas and sweet potatoes. Are there any foods you used to dislike but have grown to enjoy?

Thanks for reading. I promise it won't be another month before I post!
Have a whimsical weekend!

Monday, August 23, 2010

Orange Oat Waffles!

I'm officially one week into Junior year! Wahoo!! Overall, it has been really good. It's great getting to see some people I hadn't seen in a while. I'm a little worried though because all the teachers say junior year is the most difficult academically. The teachers encourage us to be in extracurricular activities and sports and all these different things but when are we supposed to do these things and complete all the homework/studying necessary to be a good student? There are so many things I want to be involved in, but it's just hard to find the time and still maintain good grades! That's my rant for the day.

On to some food. A few weeks ago I decided I wanted waffles. Yes, it was dinner time, but so what? I googled a few waffle recipes, even went so far as to print one out. However, recipe following and I just don't get along. For me, cooking is a creative outlet and how creative can you be when following a set of instructions? I'd heard many other bloggers talk about  oat flour but had never tried it myself; I decided this needed to change. Into my trustee little Magic Bullet went a bunch of oats and some flax seed. The base of my waffles was formed.

Upon opening my fridge, I realized I was all out of almond milk which I was planning to use as the liquid in my waffle batter. Orange juice caught my eye, so I decided what the heck, why not  use OJ as my liquid?

Cinnamon and a few other ingredients were added and it was show time.

I poured the batter into my waffle iron, closed the lid and anxiously awaited the completion of my waffle cooking. And then I realized....I had not greased/sprayed/buttered the waffle iron. Oh no! Needless to say, this was a bit of a disaster and took a while to clean.

Yet, even after I was finished washing the waffle iron, one thing was still on my mind: I wanted to eat some waffles. I had a little batter left, enough for a mini waffle, so I sprayed the pan and poured it in. The results were very good so I mixed up some more batter and cooked up some more waffles. I made several waffles, but was waiting to eat the last one I made so it would be nice and fresh. I had just enough batter left for one more waffle so I poured it in. A few minutes later I opened the waffle iron and realized I had forgotten to grease the pan, again! Luckily, this time wasn't nearly as bad as the pan had already been sprayed when I was cooking previous waffles. In fact, I was able to salvage most of the waffle. But still, you'd think I'd learn from my first mistake!

Mistakes aside, these waffle were delicious and I couldn't stop thinking about them. So a few days later, I decided to make them again. I remembered to spray the pan this time and even made enough that I was able to freeze some and now can just pop them in the toaster for an easy weekday breakfast...or dinner, whichever.

Spread with cashew butter and a little orange agave dipping sauce (I've never been a fan of syrup).

These waffles are so good! I wish I had an exact recipe to share, I may try to come up with one to post in the future. I can tell you that the following things went into the mix

  • oats (blended to a flour consistency)

  • flax (also blended)

  • orange juice

  • eggs

  • cinnamon

  • vanilla

  • baking soda
I encourage you try your favorite waffle recipe, but substituting oat flour and using orange juice and part of the liquid. It adds a really nice flavor and a little sweetness without being too sweet.
When I make them in the future, I plan to add some orange zest as I think it'll boost these waffles to an even higher level of flavorfulness.
When you don't have all the ingredients for a recipe you want to make do you improvise or wait until you can get the ingredients called for?

Whats the biggest mishap you've ever encountered while cooking/baking?

I hope you are having a magnificent Monday.
-Ann Claire

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

School Fuel

Most likely I am currently getting ready for my first real day of school. Gotta love prescheduled post. I was a little misleading in this post when I said  I would be starting school Monday. While technically yesterday was my first day of school, we didn't actually go to class or anything. On the first day we pretty much just get our locker assignments and books, take pictures and go. Seriously, I would have been out of there by 10 am if it wasn't for student council duties. So today I is my first day that we actually go to class and what not.

What will be my mid-day fuel this first day of school?

An Ezekiel pita spread with a mix of mashed avocado and lime juice and stuffed with chicken, spinach and lots of tomato. Carrots and a pear to be spread with homemade walnut/cashew butter round out the first day of school meal.

A great start to completing goal #3 of incorporating more fresh fruits and veggies into school lunches.

What is your favorite portable meal?

Wonderful waffle adventures coming soon :)

Have a beautiful day.

-Ann Claire