Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Chocolate Avocado Shake

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Avocado Chocolate Shake

I am sharing this recipe because you need it in your life. It has no dairy, no sugar, and 100% pure creaminess. On those days when your kids are screaming and your house is a mess and you need a cold refreshing treat (that happens to other people too, right?) that isn’t filled with carbs or chemicals or junk, this is what you need. I’m convinced it gets me through half my week.

Ingredients, Chocolate Avocado Shake:

  • 1 c. coconut milk
  • 1 c. ice
  • 1/2 avocado
  • 4 heaping tbsp. cocoa powder
  • 5 tbsp. honey

Puree and add any extra ice as needed. I like mine really cold. I promise it doesn’t taste like avocado. Just like thick chocolate pudding in milkshake form. Go, try it!Avocado Chocolate Shake

 

Avocado Chocolate Shake

Avocado Chocolate Shake

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Brussels Sprout Salad with Bacon, Cranberries, Kale, & Parmesan with Pear Vinagrette

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brussels sprout salad with bacon, cranberries, pecans, + fresh parm w/pear vinaigrette

You will hug me for this recipe only because it is so easy and also delicious. I’m hoping you have a Trader Joe’s nearby. First off, you’ll need a bag of pre chopped kale/Brussels sprout mix which I’ve seen at Costco and Trader Joe’s. These are wonderful because everything is pre-washed and chopped. I’m a believer that I’ll eat more salads if this step is taken care of for me.

Add to that crisp bacon, fresh parmesan cheese, cranberries, pecans, and a pear vinaigrette? Pretty amazing.

Ingredients:

  • 1 bag “Cruciferous Crunch” as it’s called at Trader Joe’s
  • 1 12-16 oz. package of bacon, cooked until crispy and cooled
  • 1 c. dried cranberries
  • 1 c. fresh grated parmesan cheese
  • 1 c. chopped pecans
  • To taste, Pear Champagne Vinaigrette from Trader Joe’s

Mix ingredients and dress. I like to dress about 15 minutes before I eat this because the greens are a little tough and pre-dressing makes it perfect by meal time.

Enjoy!

 brussels sprout salad with bacon, cranberries, pecans, + fresh parm w/pear vinaigrette brussels sprout salad with bacon, cranberries, pecans, + fresh parm w/pear vinaigrette

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Herb & Garlic Zucchini “Pasta”

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herb & garlic zucchini pasta Every recipe from Pinch of Yum is amazing. I can’t get over how she combines such fresh flavors to create healthy meals that are really filling and satisfying. This garlic and herb squash “pasta” dish with toasted pine nuts is so delicious. And filling! We loved it. She originally made this recipe with spaghetti squash but all I had was zucchini on hand so I used a veggie spiralizer to turn it into pasta. I also subbed sharp white cheddar cheese for gruyere. It was a perfect. My changes are noted in the directions.

Another great thing about this recipe is it takes only about 15 minutes total! Enjoy.

Fresh Spiralized Zucchini Pasta

INGREDIENTS

  • 3 medium zucchinis, spiralized into “pasta”
  • olive oil
  • kosher salt
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 teaspoons white wine vinegar
  • ¼ cup minced fresh parsley
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh basil (sage is also yummy)
  • ¾ cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese or gruyere
  • ½ cup pine nuts, toasted
  • black pepper

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. In a large skillet, heat 2½ tablespoons olive oil over medium heat. Add garlic & zucchini and cook for about 5 minutes, until zucchini is softened.
  2. Once zucchini is slightly softened, stir in vinegar, herbs, and ¼ teaspoon salt. Cook for about 2 minutes to heat through. Remove from heat and stir in Gruyère cheese, then top with pine nuts. Taste and add salt or pepper if desired. Top with more fresh parsley.

herb & garlic zucchini pasta

herb & garlic zucchini pasta     herb & garlic zucchini pasta

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Homemade Caramel Sauce

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homemade caramel sauce 

It is so typical of me to post a recipe with all veggies and follow it up with a caramel sauce. I think I have a healthy food with whiplash to sweet foods problem!

Anyways, back to the caramel. If I were you, I’d look in your fridge for these simple ingredients and make this caramel sauce. Now. I have to admit I ate a cup of it. With nothing on it. All I did was googlehow to make caramel sauce” and this amazing recipe from Sally’s Baking Addiction came up. Hers calls for salt which I omitted because I like a little salt on top of my caramel but not in it.homemade caramel sauce   

Ingredients, Homemade Caramel Sauce:

  • 1 cup (200g) granulated sugar
  • 6 Tablespoons (90g) salted butter, cut up into 6 pieces*
  • 1/2 cup (120ml) heavy cream

Directions:

  1. Heat granulated sugar in a medium saucepan over medium heat, stirring constantly with a high heat resistant rubber spatula or wooden spoon.
  2. Sugar will form clumps and eventually melt into a thick brown, amber-colored liquid as you continue to stir. Be careful not to burn.
  3. Once sugar is completely melted, immediately add the butter. Be careful in this step because the caramel will bubble rapidly when the butter is added.
  4. Stir the butter into the caramel until it is completely melted, about 2-3 minutes.
  5. Very slowly, drizzle in 1/2 cup of heavy cream while stirring. Since the heavy cream is colder than the caramel, the mixture will rapidly bubble and/or splatter when added.
  6. Allow the mixture to boil for 1 minute. It will rise in the pan as it boils.
  7. Remove from heat. Allow to cool down before using.
  8. Cover the caramel tightly and store for up to 2 weeks in the refrigerator. Warm the caramel up for a few seconds before using in a recipe.

homemade caramel sauce2015-04-14 14.25.22

  homemade caramel sauce

homemade caramel sauce

Monday, April 13, 2015

Sweet Potato, Kale, & Corn Chowder

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sweet potato, corn, + kale chowder

Lately I’ve been fascinated with all the people who have changed their lives and chronic health problems through diet changes. I’ve even heard European doctors talk about how plant diets can cure cancer. I’m no doctor but I sure feel better when I’m eating a meal made of pure veggies rather than bag of Cadbury Mini Eggs. Lately I’ve been trying to make more all veggie meals. This one caught my eye immediately. A healthy chowder made of all veggies + veggie broth, with a little salt, pepper, and cinnamon. In my opinion the cinnamon makes this meal! It really adds a deep flavor to the sweet potatoes. I love sweet potatoes. And leeks are amazing. They have this really subtle onion flavor that isn’t overwhelming. I couldn’t believe how full my husband and I were after eating this soup! It is so hearty and so delicious. Perfect for a rainy day here in Portland.

Sweet Potato, Kale and Corn Chowder from A House in the Hills:

INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 medium sweet potatoes, cut into 1/2″ cubes
  • 2 shallots, diced
  • 1 medium leek, cleaned and sliced (round)
  • 1 bunch of curly kale, chopped
  • 3 cups of frozen or fresh corn
  • 3 cloves of garlic
  • 3 cups of low sodium vegetable broth
  • 3 cups of water (more to preference)
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt (more to taste)
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil

DIRECTIONS:

  1. In large, heavy bottomed soup pan sauté diced shallots and coconut oil over medium/low heat until softened.
  2. Add garlic, sweet potatoes, sea salt, pepper, cinnamon and sauté an additional minute.
  3. Add vegetable broth and water, cook utnil potatoes are easily pierced with a fork.  Add leeks and cook an additional two minute
  4. Use an immersion blender (or transfer to a standing blender) to rough puree the soup.
  5. Add kale, corn and cook until kale is softened.  Add additional salt and pepper to taste.

sweet potato, corn, + kale chowder

    sweet potato, corn, + kale chowder

 sweet potato, corn, + kale chowder

 

sweet potato, corn, + kale chowder

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

It’s All Greek to Me – Greek Burgers with Homemade Tatziki

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Homemade Greek Burgers with Tatziki | It's All Greek to Me Food Blog Tour #OneYrGreek | Shan Made

Happy Thursday! I am celebrating Greek style today as part of a one-year anniversary blog tour for Debbie Matenopoulos’ cookbook  It’s All Greek to Me. I’m thrilled to be a part of this #OneYrGreek food blog tour and to share the amazing recipe I reviewed for it.

 

Greek2

 

If you are looking for Greek recipes, cooking tips, advice, inspiration, and a visual foray into the wonderful country of Greece, including its food & people, then you must pick up this book! It is more than just recipes, but a catalogue of experiences and stories through a beautiful place, Debbie Matenopoulos who is full of energy & love for Greece and its food.

 

OneYrGreek

 

Before I begin with the recipe, I have to say these were some of the best hamburgers I’ve ever had. The mixture of fresh herbs, especially the mint, with the lemon juice, and the wonderful addition of bread into the meat (please tell me why I haven’t thought of this before), made for a flavorful, aromatic, and oh so juicy burger. I’d call it a Greek meatball burger. I am still thinking about the way the parsley smelled with the lemon juice and mint. Such a delicious flavor combination. With some fresh tomatoes and tatziki, + a yummy bun you have a perfect meal that is fresh, easy, and wonderfully Greek.

 

Homemade Greek Burgers with Tatziki | It's All Greek to Me Food Blog Tour #OneYrGreek | Shan Made

My favorite part of cooking these burgers is that they are baked, not grilled or fried, so the prep work is extremely easy and they are all ready at the same time. While the burgers were baking I was able to get my kitchen cleaned up, other ingredients prepped, and the dinner table set. Win.

Homemade Greek Burgers with Tatziki | It's All Greek to Me Food Blog Tour #OneYrGreek | Shan Made

Traditionally, these hamburger patties are fried, but Debbie’s baked version is light, healthy, and flavorful.

It’s All Greek to Me, Greek Hamburgers or Keftethes (kef-TEH-thes):

  • 1 cup day-old bread, crusts removed, cut into 1/2-inch cubes (about 1 to 2 slices)
  • 11/2 pounds lean ground beef or turkey
  • 1 medium yellow onion, finely chopped
  • 3 tablespoons finely chopped fresh Italian flat-leaf parsley
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon finely chopped fresh mint
  • 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice (about 1/2 lemon)
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 large eggs
  • 3/4 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour

It’s All Greek to Me, Homemade Tatziki, (dza-DZEE-kee):

  • 1/2 Seedless English cucumber, peeled
  • 1 tsp. sea salt, divided (plus more to taste)
  • 2 c. plain Greek yogurt
  • 3 cloves garlic, peeled and mashed into a paste
  • 1/3 c. extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 Tbsp. red or white wine vinegar
  • 1 Tbsp. minced fresh dill

Directions, Greek Hamburgers:

  1. Soak the bread briefly in a bowl of water until wet all the way the through. Squeeze the bread to remove excess water and transfer to a large mixing bowl. Add the ground beef or turkey, onion, parsley, oregano, mint, lemon juice, olive oil, eggs, salt, and pepper, and knead with impeccably clean hands until well combined. Cover the bowl and refrigerate for 1 hour.
  2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly oil a large baking dish.
  3. Shape the meat mixture into individual patties, about 1-inch thick and 3 inches across. Spread the flour out on a large dish. Dredge each patty in the flour to lightly dust both sides and shake off any excess flour. Neatly arrange the patties in the prepared baking dish. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes. Serve immediately with Tzatziki on the side, if desired.

Directions, Tatziki:

  1. Coarsely grate the cucumber using a box grater or food processor, and toss with 1/2 teaspoon of the salt. Place the grated cucumber in a fine-mesh sieve set over a bowl, and drain for 10 minutes. Working in batches, a handful at a time, squeeze as much remaining water from the cucumber as possible, transferring the drained cucumber to a medium mixing bowl.
  2. Add the rest of the ingredients along with the remaining 1/2 teaspoon of salt, and mix well. You can serve the Tzatziki immediately, but I prefer to let it sit in refrigerator for 2 to 3 hours so that all of the flavors blend and come alive. Tzatziki will keep for up to 5 days in the refrigerator, but be warned: the garlicky flavor intensifies as time passes!

Once the burgers are done, place on buns and top with tomatoes, tatziki and any other fresh herbs or veggies you’d like. Prepare to fall in love, Greek style.

     Homemade Greek Burgers with Tatziki | It's All Greek to Me Food Blog Tour #OneYrGreek | Shan Made      Homemade Greek Burgers with Tatziki | It's All Greek to Me Food Blog Tour #OneYrGreek | Shan Made

Homemade Greek Burgers with Tatziki | It's All Greek to Me Food Blog Tour #OneYrGreek | Shan Made

Amazon rated this cookbook as one of its top books in 2014! I love reading the reviews about how authentic Debbie’s food really is! Go here to purchase It’s All Greek to Me. And see other food bloggers on the #OneYrGreek tour below. Enjoy!

Greek3

Monday, April 6, 2015

General Conference Printables

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LDS General Conference Printables // Hand Lettering Printables // Shan Made

As you may know from reading my blog in the past, twice a year our church holds a General Conference to address the millions of members around the world. We receive modern day revelation and teachings about being better people, living our beliefs more fully, and overall to feel inspiration and hear uplifting words. I am so grateful for the help and comfort of General Conference twice each year. Here are some lettering quotes I put together, available as free downloadable printables here on my site. Whatever your beliefs, most of these messages are great inspiring ideas to improve ourselves.

Click each image to be directed to a PDF for printing. Each printable is sized as an 8x10, but you can scale as needed for printing.

LDS General Conference Printables // Hand Lettering Printables

LDS General Conference Printables // Hand Lettering Printables

LDS General Conference Printables // Hand Lettering Printables

LDS General Conference Printables // Hand Lettering Printables

LDS General Conference Printables // Hand Lettering Printables

 LDS General Conference Printables // Hand Lettering Printables

 LDS General Conference Printables // Hand Lettering Printables  LDS General Conference Printables // Hand Lettering Printables

LDS General Conference Printables // Hand Lettering Printables

LDS General Conference Printables // Hand Lettering Printables

LDS General Conference Printables // Hand Lettering Printables

LDS General Conference Printables // Hand Lettering Printables  LDS General Conference Printables // Hand Lettering Printables

LDS General Conference Printables // Hand Lettering Printables

LDS General Conference Printables // Hand Lettering Printables

Monday, March 30, 2015

Chipotle Copycat Guacamole

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Copycat Chipotle Guacamole
Usually I think I can just throw together some ingredients when it comes to guacamole, and have it turn out well. After a couple of tries with that and the guac just being okay, I decided to look up Chipotle’s delicious guacamole recipe. I found it on PopSugar with a collaboration they did with Chipotle here.Turns out I should have done this long ago. This was the best homemade guacamole I’ve ever made. I couldn’t eat enough of it. Next time you need some guac, try this recipe (and make lots ;) I was a little skeptical of the lemon juice, but trust me it’s delicious. They called for serrano chiles which I didn’t have so I substituted a jalapeno instead.
Ingredients, Chipotle Copycat Guacamole:
  • 3 large avocadoes
  • 1 tbsp. citrus juice (lemon & lime combined – fresh juice)
  • 1 1/2 c. cilantro, chopped fine
  • 1/2 red onion, diced very thin
  • 1/2 jalapeno, diced small (remove seeds unless you want it really spicy)
  • 1/2 tsp salt (add more if needed)
The recipe calls to mash the citrus juice in with this, but I prefer to pour it over the diced onions for about 5 minutes. I really think this helps cut down on the bite of the raw onions in the recipe. After onions have sat in the citrus juice for 5 minutes, roughly mash the avocadoes with a fork (leave some chunks!), then add remaining ingredients, including onions. Serve immediately! Also, I like my avocadoes chilled beforehand so my guac is cold. Is that strange? Also I topped mine with extra cilantro because I love it.
  Copycat Chipotle Guacamole
 Copycat Chipotle Guacamole
 Copycat Chipotle Guacamole
 Copycat Chipotle Guacamole
 Copycat Chipotle Guacamole