April 26, 2013

GAPS pretzel recipe

Posted in appetizers, child-friendly, GAPS friendly, snacks tagged , , , at 11:14 am by Jordan

GAPS pretzel recipe, linked to from Heavenly Princess

Heavenly Princess

3 gifts reflecting

my partner-in-blessing’s glasses, catching the light
the joy of the Lord reflected in the life of an older woman
reflecting upon powerful conversations

3 gifts fragile

100-year-old poetry books
china passed down from great-grandmother
grain-free pretzels (recipe)

4:24gfpretzels

a gift cloth, steel, wood

culturing yogurt covered by flour sack towel
semi truck delivering good food to many families
half-barrels holding squash and watermelon plants

3 gifts moving

stories of redemption, perhaps too personal to share here
You Are More (video)
that God, His son not sparing, sent Him to die – I scarce can take it in

A Holy Experience

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February 25, 2013

Boats with crackers for sails {GAPS}

Posted in appetizers, child-friendly, GAPS friendly, side, snacks tagged , , , , at 8:17 pm by Jordan

cracker boat

A slice of stuffed pepper – recipe here – with triangular crackers for sails.

A couple days ago, I decided to take inspiration from this recipe and make some GAPS crackers. Mom sprouted some sunflower and pumpkin seeds, then dehydrated them, so that was my base.

The first batch:
I put a cup of sunflower seeds into the food processor with a half teaspoon salt and blended until it was a dense flour (as per the recipe above…). While the processor was running, I drizzled in some water – probably about 2-3 Tablespoons – until it seized up in a ball. I skipped the sesame seeds, because we’re not ready for the added texture yet. I tasted the dough, and it seemed very salty. I figured, they’re crackers, and the majority of my family likes salt a lot, so I left the dough as it was.
I took the ball out of the machine and put it on an Excalibur (dehydrator) Teflex sheet. I flattened it some, then topped it with another Teflex sheet and rolled it thin (1/8″ or thinner).
I decided that since the dehydrator was still running for the coconut yogurt we were making, I would try dehydrating the crackers rather than baking them. So I scored the crackers right on the Teflex sheet and put them into the dehydrator (110°F). After about an hour, I flipped them over onto a mesh sheet to speed the drying process. (Sorry, I didn’t really take note of how long they were in before they were done – we just checked periodically and pulled them out once they seemed completely dry,)

Verdict on first batch:
The crackers did not taste as salty as the dough – so these were great! Dehydrating makes them dense and hard, as opposed to crispy, so they kinda stick in your teeth. The whole family loves them though!

The second batch:
I decided to make some more, this time with pumpkin seeds added to the mix. I used exactly the same method as above, except that I added 1/2 cup pumpkin seeds at the beginning, and consequently had to use a little more water. The pumpkin seeds gave the mixture an interesting texture, but it held together and rolled out fine. These also went into the dehydrator.

Verdict on second batch:
Just as tasty (and with the same texture) as the first!

The best batch (IMO):
A little later in the afternoon, I was doing some baking, so I decided to whip up another batch to try in the oven. I used a mixture of sunflower and pumpkin (I didn’t measure this time), and added some fresh rosemary and a tiny sprig of sage at the very beginning. The flour blended up beautifully even with the added moisture from the fresh herbs. I drizzled in the water a little faster this time (which meant more water went into the flour before it seized up), since the first two batches of dough seemed a bit too stiff to me. It worked well, and I rolled out the dough between two Teflex sheets again. Then I realized that I couldn’t simply slide the Teflex sheet onto the pan and into the oven like I had with the dehydrator. I took a chance and quickly flipped the sheet onto a stoneware baking sheet – it worked! the crackers stuck just enough to successfully make it onto the stone, and I was able to peel off the Teflex easily. I then scored the crackers and baked them for about 20 minutes at 350° – until they began to turn golden brown (or, at least what would have been golden brown if they hadn’t have been green from the pumpkin seeds and herbs!)

The verdict?
Super tasty crackers – especially great with avocado and sour cream 😉 The baked variety are much lighter and crispier. They don’t stick in your teeth!

February 24, 2013

4-Ingredient Zucchini Bread {GAPS}

Posted in appetizers, bread, breakfast, child-friendly, dessert, GAPS friendly tagged , , , at 8:16 pm by Jordan

4-ingredient zucchini bread

Alongside the stuffed peppers we ate yesterday, we served this zucchini bread. It has sort of a neutral-savory taste which makes it good with almond butter, honey, or yogurt (breakfast!) or with butter or sour cream (lunch or dinner).

This just might be the simplest zucchini bread recipe you’ve ever seen!

Ingredients:
6 eggs
2 cups almond flour
2 cups zucchini, shredded
1/2 teaspoon salt

Blend the ingredients together with a fork and pour it into muffin tins, a loaf pan, or (as pictured) a 9″x9″ pan. Bake 20-30 minutes at 350°.

Could it be even simpler? Yes! You can simply cut 2 cups worth of zucchini (about 2 small) into chunks and throw it into the blender or food processor with the eggs. After that’s pureed, add the flour one cup at a time, and if it doesn’t mix all the way, finish mixing with a fork.

February 14, 2013

Valentine’s Treats! {GAPS}

Posted in appetizers, bread, breakfast, child-friendly, dessert, GAPS friendly, side tagged , , , at 11:43 am by Jordan

For Valentine’s day, we made a couple special treats: heart carrots and pancakes! They were well-recieved by all (especially when the pancakes were served with a thin layer of raw honey).

Valentine's Treats! {GAPS}

I found a heart shaped carrots tutorial through Pinterest, and added a step to make it GAPS-legal. After cutting the hearts, I boiled them for about 30 minutes so they’re nice and soft. (I like to drink the left-over water – it’s sweet!)

To introduce egg whites, we made squash pancakes:
Blend 4 eggs and 1/2 c butternut squash in the Vita-mix (or blender). Cook at a low heat in coconut oil or animal fat. Be careful not to brown too much (for GAPS). Optional – cut with cookie cutters.

February 4, 2013

How to make sauerkraut, by Daniel (age 7) {GAPS}

Posted in appetizers, child-friendly, GAPS friendly, side, soup tagged , at 6:24 pm by Jordan

Daniel helped make a batch of sauerkraut last night, and Moriah photographed him. He wrote these instructions specifically for other children his age – all his own words (so maybe you should take them with a grain of sea salt ;)).
While we can’t eat the fibrous solids of the sauerkraut until Stage 3, we’ve been enjoying small amounts of the juice in soups and broth. A food processor makes preparing sauerkraut so easy! We’re very grateful for ours, gifted to us by our buying club which Mom runs.

danSK01

Step 1: Cut the cabbage in small chunks. Use a small dull knife so you don’t cut yourself.

danSK02

Step 2: Fill up the food processor with chunks of cabbage. They should be about the size of a tennis ball. Read the rest of this entry »

June 26, 2012

Posted in appetizers, breakfast, child-friendly, dessert, drinks, snacks tagged , , , , , , , , , at 2:57 am by Jordan

I posted about green smoothies on my blog today 🙂 Here’s the reblogged post…

Heavenly Princess

Our family has been enjoying “green smoothies” for some time now, so called because of their content, not their color. The smoothie in the picture is a green smoothie, loaded with spinach and other greens, but it’s bright pinkish-purple! The secret to getting this gorgeous color is simple. Just use lots of berries, and add some raw (or frozen) BEET! You can’t really taste it, but it’s so good for you!

Basic Recipe for Green Smoothies

(You must use a Vitamix or Blendtec to get everything liquified without burning out your blender!)

Blend well 3 c. cold water plus a few handfuls of greens and sprouts (up to 6 c. line). Add frozen and fresh fruit until filled to the top and blend until smooth. We also throw in other ingredients, such as fresh mint, celery, carrots, hemp protein powder, ginger, avocado, cacao nibs, hemp, chia or flax seeds, just to…

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January 31, 2011

Vita-mix pesto

Posted in appetizers, sauces tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , at 11:30 pm by Jordan

I originally learned to make pesto using the recipe in the Vita-mix cookbook (a Vita-mix is I high-power blender, seen in the picture above). I read more about it in a book titled Pesto, and found that it’s not a science in the least. So now I make it like this…

1-2 cups of herbs – whatever is available! Basil is thought of first, parsley is a good filler, use about 1/4 cup with basil. I’ve used a mixture of Cilantro and Parsley, and my sister’s favorite is basil with a couple Tablespoons of Rosemary. You can also add other greens (lettuce, chard, etc) as filler, particularly when using very strong tasting herbs that need to be mellowed (cilantro, Rosemary, etc.) Oregano is a wonderful addition to Basil pesto.

1 cup of nuts. Pine nuts are traditional, and work best because of their high oil content. Walnuts (my personal favorite) are a close second for the same reason. You can also use pecans, almonds, or any other nuts, really. Just be aware that ‘crispy nuts’ (roasted or Nourishing Traditions recipe) will be chunky, rather than adding to the creaminess of the sauce.

1/2 cup Parmesan cheese or sesame seeds. The seeds are a great substitute for Parmesan cheese (ground in a coffee grinder, you can use it just like the powdered cheese – for pesto, you can use whole seeds). The only difference we’ve noticed in the pesto is that when we use real cheese, we don’t add as much salt as we do with the seeds.

Garlic to taste! The batch pictured above uses 3-4 cloves of a native variety. It was SO good!

A couple Tablespoons of lemon juice (optional because I often forget!)

Place all of the above ingredients into the Vita-mix, roughly in order (greens first, nuts next, everything else after that). Pour olive oil over that until you can see that it’s made it way to the bottom (about 1/2 cup, maybe?). Put the black part of the lid on, leaving off the clear part so you can continue to add oil. Start the Vita-mix on Variable 1 and slowly turn up to about five. Add olive oil as needed to keep things moving. When it’s moving nicely, you can stop adding for a thicker consistency, but I usually add more if we’re not planning on using it as a spread (thinner is better for uses like pasta sauce). Continue blending on a medium Variable speed until it looks good to you! (some people like it creamier than others).

September 14, 2010

Creative Watermelons

Posted in appetizers, dessert tagged , , , at 4:54 pm by Jordan

September 11, 2010

Calzones

Posted in appetizers, main dish, side at 4:43 pm by Jordan

July 28, 2010

Mom and Dad’s date~fruit and vegetable platter

Posted in appetizers, child-friendly tagged , at 8:19 pm by Jordan

Semi-straightforward, but a creative way to serve fresh fruits and vegetables nonetheless! a fancy arrangement is perfect for datenight, but children also love more whimsical “pictures” (try making a clown face or flower garden!).