Vege Recipes For Vege Haters

Jannine Myers

Here’s a couple more recipes for the young ones, and these ones, though they contain vegetables, might please even the pickiest of eaters. The first recipe is a Smoked Gruyere Brown Rice Frittata with shredded vegetables.

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Ingredients

1 1/2 cups (approx.) brown rice, uncooked

1 to 2 tbsps olive oil

1 medium onion, finely chopped

2 garlic cloves, crushed

1 medium zucchini, grated

1 medium carrot, grated

mushrooms, sliced (optional)

1/3 cup milk (at least 2% fat)

3 tbsps freshly chopped rosemary or a good dash of dried rosemary

1/2 block of Smoked Apple Gruyere cheese, grated (this particular cheese is rich in taste and gives the frittata a really delicious flavor)

 

Directions

Preheat oven to 350 F. Grease a baking pan that you would use for a round cake or frittata.

Cook the rice and drain well (I cooked the rice in a mix of chicken broth and water)

Heat the oil in a frypan, then cook the onions and garlic until soft, and add the zucchini, carrots (and mushrooms, if using). Cook and stir for just a couple of minutes then set aside to cool.

Once the vegetable mixture has cooled down a little, add the cooked rice, eggs (pre-whisked with a fork), milk, and rosemary. Season with salt and pepper, then stir in half the shredded cheese.

Pour the mixture into baking pan and top with remaining cheese. Bake for approximately 40 minutes. Serve warm with a side salad or other greens (I served it with steamed broccoli).

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The second recipe is what I’ve called “Surprise” Muffins. I made some of these for a friend, and asked her to guess what the yellow pieces of flesh were. She and her husband thought they were either mango or peach, but they were both wrong; I used yellow tomatoes.

Yellow tomatoes are “surprisingly” sweet, and nutritionally they are just as good for you as red tomatoes; the main differences are that they contain slightly less fiber, quite a bit less vitamin C, but more phosphorous, potassium, zinc, sodium, and double the iron.

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Ingredients

1/2 cup oats

1 ¼ cups organic flour

1 cup wheat bran flakes

1 1/4 cups non-dairy milk

12 small pieces of soft, white cheese (any kind)

2 to 3 yellow tomatoes, diced

1/2 cup organic sugar

2 tsps baking powder

1/2 tsp baking soda

1 tsp ground cinnamon

1/2 cup vegetable oil (or half oil, half apple sauce)

3 eggs

2 tbsps golden syrup (or honey, maple syrup)

brown sugar to top muffins

 

Directions

Preheat oven to 365 F. Line or grease a muffin tin.

Pour the milk into a small bowl and add the bran flakes; let the bran soak for several minutes.

In a large bowl, combine the flour, oats, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and cinnamon. In a separate bowl, whisk the eggs, oil, golden syrup, and add the bran/milk mixture; mix well. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients, then add the diced tomatoes and mix until well combined. The mixture will seem a little wet, but that’s okay.

Pour the batter into the prepared muffin tray, top with brown sugar and tomato bake for 20 to 25 mins.

Best to eat warm from the oven, while the cheese is gooey and melted. Enjoy.

Mini Recipes For Mini Wooters

Jannine Myers

We now have budding WOOTers following in our footsteps; well, actually they’re called GLTR (Girls Love To Run), and pronounced “Glitter.” They’ve only been at it for a couple of weeks so we’ll let them get more fully established before reporting on them, but in the meantime here’s a couple of nutritious recipes for your active girls: Pork and Red Lentil Shepherd’s Pie, and Flourless Mini Choc-Nut Muffins.

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Pork and Red Lentil Shepherds Pie

Ingredients

1 tbsp olive oil

1 small onion, sliced

2 cloves garlic

1 medium carrot, roughly chopped

1/2 lb lean pork pieces

1/4 cup flour

1 1/2 cups organic chicken broth

1/2 cup water

1 cup red lentils, uncooked

2 tbsps tomato sauce

1 tsp worcestershire sauce

2 medium sweet potatoes (orange or yellow)

2 tbsps butter

1/2 cup shredded cheese

 

In a frying pan, saute the onions and garlic in olive oil, then add the carrots and let cook for a few minutes. Remove the vegetables from the pan with a slotted spoon and transfer to a blender or food processor. Add 1/3 portion of the chicken broth to the blender, and pulse until the vegetables are minced.

Next, add the pork to the fry pan and cook for a few minutes (add a little extra oil if needed). Once the meat is brown, add the flour and quickly whisk. Then slowly add the remaining broth, making sure to whisk as you’re pouring so that there are no lumps from the flour. Stir in the water, tomato sauce, worcestershire sauce, and mix well. Add the lentils and vegetable mixture, and slowly bring the liquid to a boil before lowering the heat and simmering (cover with lid), on low for approximately 15 to 20 minutes.

While the lentil mixture is simmering, boil the sweet potatoes until tender. Mash with the butter (and a little milk if too dry).

Fill individual ramekins with the the cooked lentil and pork mixture, to two-thirds full. Top each ramekin with mashed sweet potato and shredded cheese, and top with black pepper. Bake in a 375 F pre-heated oven for 20 minutes.

Flourless Mini Choc-Nut Muffins (super easy by the way)

Ingredients

1/2 cup sunbutter

1/2 cup peanut butter [or use any nut butters you have, either a combination or just one kind]

2 medium sized bananas

2 large eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla (try making your own!)

2 tablespoons of honey

½ teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar

Chocolate chips – a small handful

 

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

Place all ingredients, except the chocolate chips, into a blender or food processor, and blend until well mixed. Pour batter into a greased mini muffin tin. Top each muffin with a few chocolate chips. Bake for approximately 10 minutes.

 

[Taken from this recipe]

Coconut Cacao “Hammerite” Bars

Jannine Myers

Here’s another recipe for those of you who like raw and wholesome “energy” snacks, and if you are as keen on Hammer Nutrition products as I am, you’ll love that I included Recoverite powder in these bars. These are super easy to make, but quite decadent, so don’t eat them all at once; I like to grab one before I exercise, and/or immediately after (to hold me over until I have time to eat a proper meal).

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Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup shredded unsweetened coconut
  • 1/4 cup flax seeds
  • 1/4 cup raw whole almonds
  • 1/4 cup chia seeds
  • 2 scoops Recoverite (any flavor will work – I used Strawberry in these bars and they were delicious)
  • 1/3 cup coconut cacao spread (I used this product, but if you can’t find anything similar, just substitute with something like this organic hazelnut/cocoa spread)
  • 2 tbsps melted coconut oil
  • 2 tbsps agave syrup
  • A dash of sea salt (optional)

Directions

Simple: just pulse all the ingredients together in a food processor until a dough-like consistency is achieved, and then spread out in a rectangle shape on a parchment-lined tray. Cover the top with more parchment paper and place in the refrigerator to set for a couple of hours. Cut into approximately 16 bars and store in a sealed container, either in the freezer or refrigerator.

[About Hammer Nutrition Recoverite: if you’ve never tried Recoverite before, it’s a powder-form recovery drink that has been especially formulated to provide the ideal 3:1 ratio of carbohydrates:protein. The 3:1 ratio is necessary for optimal replenishment of muscle glycogen and muscle tissue rebuilding. Recoverite also contains all natural ingredients, as well as electrolytes and other nutrients beneficial for recovery. Available in strawberry, orange-vanilla, vanilla, and chocolate, it’s a great tasting recovery drink that will tremendously enhance your recovery efforts and reduce post-exercise soreness. For more information on pricing and where to purchase, click here].

A Recipe For Matcha Lovers

Jannine Myers

On a trip to Taipei last November, my girlfriends and I sampled the most amazing matcha cookies; tasting those cookies led to a brief follow-on phase of matcha-flavored cravings. I came home from Taipei, bought some matcha powder and tried a few different recipes. One of the recipes I tried was raw matcha cacao bars; I made them right before I left for New Zealand during the Christmas break and rediscovered them in my freezer last week. I don’t know if it’s because they have been sitting for so long and the bars have been thoroughly infused with the combined green tea and cacao flavor, but the taste has improved significantly from the day they were first made. I’m really enjoying these bars at the moment, and if you’re a green tea lover I think you’ll enjoy them too.

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Ingredients

1 2/3 cups pitted dates
1/3 cup cacao powder
2 /3 cup raw whole almonds
2 tbsp matcha powder
2 tbsp coconut oil (make sure you melt it if it has solidified)
1/3 cup unsweetened, shredded coconut
2 tbsp agave nectar
2 tbsps cacao nibs
Directions
Put all the almonds into a food processor and pulse into roughly grounded pieces. Next, add the remaining ingredients to the food processor and pulse until completely combined. Once all the ingredients are thoroughly combined, transfer to a piece of parchment paper and use your hands to press the dough into a large rectangle or circle about 1 inch thick. Wrap in saran wrap or parchment paper and chill on a baking tray in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours before cutting.
Cut into desired size of bars (or use a cookie cutter for fun shapes!). Lightly dust with a bit of matcha powder. You can store the bars (layered between parchment paper if you want to avoid them sticking together) in your refrigerator, or do what I did and keep them in the freezer (I have been taking a few pieces out each morning and letting them sit at room temperature for a couple of hours). Enjoy!

A Double Energy-Snack Recipe Post

Jannine Myers

Keeping All The Athletes In The Family Fueled

This week has been a busy one for my 12-year old; she’s been spending extra time at her dance studio rehearsing for a pretty major showcase event next week. With all the hours she’s putting in at the studio, I wanted to make sure she has snacks on hand that will nourish and fuel her. In addition to the fruits, nuts, cheese, crackers, and Clif Kid ZBars that she likes, I made her some peanut butter/chocolate chip muffins. She’s an active kid, so a few extra calories and fat won’t hurt.

As for me, I’m kind of carb-loading this week in preparation for a trail race (I don’t really need to since it’s only 19k, but any excuse for extra carbs…..), and instead of a sugary snack I went for salted baked baby potatoes. Super easy to make, these potatoes are awesome!

Check out the recipes below!

baked potatoes

PB&ChocChip Muffins

1 cup brown rice flour

2 tsps baking powder

1/4 tsp baking soda

1/4 cup finely-shredded unsweetened coconut

1/4 cup chopped walnuts

1/4 cup chocolate chips

1 cup almond milk

4 tbsps peanut butter, melted

 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a muffin tray with cupcake liners (makes 8 or 9 muffins). Add all the dry ingredients to a large mixing bowl and combine. Stir in the melted peanut butter and mix. Finally, add the almond milk and mix to an even consistency. Fill the cupcake liners and place the muffin tray in the oven. Bake for approximately 15 to 17 minutes. Let cool and enjoy.

[Adapted from recipe posted by NourishNotPunish]

Salted Baked Baby Potatoes

8 baby potatoes

3/4 tbsp olive oil

Sea salt and black pepper

Goats Cheese

Mango Chutney / Pesto / Marmalade / Relish – your choice

 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Scrub and clean the potatoes and put them in a medium-size bowl. Add the olive oil and salt and pepper to the bowl and mix well so that the potatoes are nicely coated. Place potatoes on a baking tray, and bake for approximately 30 minutes. Remove from the oven, then cut a slit in the middle of each potato and fill each slit with a small piece of goats cheese. Bake for a further 3 to 5 minutes, just until the cheese is slightly melted. Top your potatoes with your choice of chutney, pesto, marmalade, or relish. Enjoy.

Lychee Coconut Muffins

Jannine Myers

Here’s another recipe that came about as a result of wanting to use up lingering ingredients; this time it was a can of lychees that I had intended to use some time ago but never got around to it. The end result was a deliciously moist “lychee-coconut muffin.”

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I decided to go with a combined coconut flavour since I always have coconut on hand and I also had some Chobani Coconut Blended Greek yogurt in the refrigerator. A little organic muesli thrown in the mix gave it a really nice texture and taste. I have to warn you though – these are not a low-calorie/low-fat muffin, but they do taste good and they contain a good amount of protein and calcium (approximately 5g protein and 33mg calcium).

Ingredients

1/4 cup Bobs Redmill GF 1-to-1 Baking Flour

1 3/4 cups Bobs Redmill GF All Purpose Baking Flour

3/4 cup organic muesli

1/4 cup unsweetened finely-shredded coconut

1/2 cup coconut flour

1 tsp baking powder

1 tsp baking soda

dash of salt

1/8 cup agave syrup

1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk

1 egg, beaten

1/4 cup coconut oil, melted

1 8-10oz. can lychees, drained and chopped into small pieces

handful of chopped walnuts

1 tbsp mixed sugar and shredded coconut

Directions

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Line a muffin tray with cupcake liners.

Combine all dry ingredients in a large bowl and mix. In a smaller bowl, combine wet ingredients and mix thoroughly. Add to the dry ingredients and mix until just combined. Add the lychees and gently blend in, but don’t over-mix. Pour batter evenly into the 12-lined muffin cases, and top with a few walnuts and a light sprinkling of sugar and shredded coconut.

Bake in the oven for approximately 20 minutes. Allow to cool, and enjoy with your favourite tea.

Honey Bran Rock Cakes

Jannine Myers

This week’s recipe came about out of necessity – well, sort of. I had a few bags of various types of flour in my pantry, and all almost empty. Rather than dispose of them, I decided to combine them all and bake something that I thought I might like; the end result was what I have decided to call my “honey bran rock cakes.”

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Have you ever had savoury rock cakes by the way? With cheese and onion soup mix? They’re delicious! But these honey bran rock cakes are not bad either, and if you’re into healthy then these are definitely the better choice. Made with a good-tasting honey (I used Heavenly Organics Himalayan Raw Acacia Honey), and Bob’s Red Mill Wheat Bran, these semi-sweet rock cakes are great for those of you looking for a healthy snack with a little extra fiber.

Ingredients

1/4 cup brown rice flour

3/4 cup gluten free all-purpose flour

1/2 cup gluten free whole wheat flour

[Note: this recipe is not intended to be gluten free – I just used gluten free flours because that’s what I had left in my pantry; the wheat bran obviously contains gluten]

1/2 cup Bob’s Red Mill wheat bran (or any other brand)

1 tsp baking powder

1/4 tsp baking soda

1/2 cup honey (your choice)

1/4 cup coconut oil (I actually used a little less than a 1/4 cup)

1 egg

1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk

 

Directions

Preheat oven to 375 F.

Mix milk and bran and let sit for at least 5 mins.

Combine coconut oil and honey, and melt in microwave.

Sift together the flours, baking powder, and baking soda.

Combine flour mixture with bran mixture, honey mixture, and beaten egg.

Place by teaspoonfuls on a greased baking sheet.

Sprinkle with shredded coconut and sugar.

Bake approximately 10 minutes.

Allow to cool before serving.

A Is For Autumn And Apples

Jannine Myers

It’s Autumn now and along with the obvious seasonal changes such as temperature and length of days, we’re also seeing new fruits and vegetables at the local farmers’ markets and grocery stores. Last week I picked up a bag of fresh green apples, and I couldn’t resist using them to make a spiced apple loaf with chunks of raw ginger.

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When I was growing up, I always remember seeing health charts at school and at the doctor’s clinic with a picture of an apple, followed by the caption “An apple a day keeps the doctor away!” If only staying healthy were that simple, but actually, apples do contain many nutrients that make them worth eating on a regular basis.

Here are just a few reasons why apples are good for you:

  • Apples are a low-calorie, high-fiber food; in other words, you can eat apples for a guilt-free sweet snack, and their fiber content will leave you feeling full for much longer.
  • One apple counts for about 1 cup of fruit; the recommended daily fruit intake is around 2 cups for adults on a 2000-calorie diet, so an apple a day meets half the daily fruit requirement.
  • Apples are a great source of immune-boosting Vitamin C.
  • Apples contain quercetin, and interestingly, research suggests that quercetin may help to improve endurance and lead to other fitness gains. The jury is still out but so far the data revealed looks promising. [Read this article for more information]

So even if you don’t feel like chopping up apples for baking purposes, enjoy eating them as they are!

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Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups all purpose gluten free flour, plus 1 tsp
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • dash ground cloves and ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil
  • 2 tablespoons agave syrup
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 3/4 cup apple juice, unsweetened
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 chunk of fresh ginger, finely chopped (about 1 tsp)
  • 2 cups apple, peeled, cored and diced
  • 1/2 cup pecans, coarsely chopped

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350ºF. Grease a loaf pan with a little butter.
  2. Add flour, baking soda, baking powder, and spices to a large bowl and mix to combine.
  3. In another large bowl, add the oil and sugar. Using a mixer, mix on medium speed until well combined. Add the egg, agave syrup, apple juice and vanilla, and mix until combined. Reduce speed to low, and gradually beat in the flour mixture, being careful not to overmix.
  4. In a medium bowl, toss together the chopped ginger, diced apples, chopped nuts and 1 tsp flour until combined. Fold fruit and nut mixture into the batter.
  5. Pour batter into prepared loaf pan. Place pan on baking sheet, and bake until a tester inserted in center comes out clean, about 60-65 minutes. Transfer pan to wire rack and let cool for 15 minutes before removing it from pan and letting it cool completely on a wire rack (although, it tastes best when it’s still warm from the oven).

Try Eating Purple Foods For A Greater Antioxidant Effect

Jannine Myers

Purple fruits and vegetables are known for their high antioxidant content, and the reason we should all want to eat foods with lots of antioxidants is because they help to combat the aging process and keep us looking younger and healthier!

Additionally, the purple pigment in foods such as eggplant, purple cabbages, blackberries, and blueberries, all contain certain flavanoids that offer protection from certain diseases, including some cancers. With so many different kinds of purple fruits and vegetables to choose from, there’s no reason why you can’t get more of them into your daily diet.

Here’s a recipe to get you started; it’s a baked purple sweet potato and blueberry mash:

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Ingredients

  • 2 purple sweet potatoes, peeled and cubed
  • 1/8 cup coconut oil, 1/8 cup organic unsweetened soy milk
  • 1/2 cup frozen blueberries
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons softened butter, unsalted
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon, plus extra for garnish
  • 1/4 cup walnuts and some shredded coconut for garnish
  • Plain organic yogurt

Directions

  1. Heat oven to 400F. Boil sweet potatoes for about 15 minutes, then drain.
  2. In a blender or food processor, pulse all the ingredients, including the cooked sweet potatoes (but excluding the blueberries). When the mixture is well combined, add the frozen blueberries and stir.
  3. Divide between 5 ramekins. Sprinkle with shredded coconut and walnuts. Bake for about 10 to 15 mins.
  4. Serve with yogurt and a dash of cinnamon.

 

This Week’s Farmers Market Buys – Part Two

Jannine Myers

Another purchase I made at the farmers market last weekend is a bag of yomogi leaves.

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I first learned about the yomogi plant (known in other countries as mugwort) a few years ago, when I asked one of my Japanese friends why yomogi mochi, or kusamochiseemed to be so popular. Apparently, the yomogi plant grows everywhere in Japan, and because it’s so abundantly available, it’s commonly used to make mochi.

While yomogi leaves are great for making delicious rice cakes, they can also be utilized in many other ways and they are actually believed to contain significant anti-inflammatory effects. One way I use yomogi leaves is by adding them to my smoothies; the leaves do have quite a distinctive taste but I don’t find it unpleasant at all.

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Ingredients

Yomogi leaves – a decent handful

Fresh ginger – cut a generous piece

Grated carrots – 1/4 cup

Frozen (small, or half) banana

Frozen strawberries – 1/4 cup

Camu camu powder – 1 tsp

Chocolate protein powder (I use Vega Protein Smoothie Choc-A-Lot) – 1 scoop

Almond milk -1/4 cup

Water – 1/2 cup

Throw everything in a blender and process till smooth and creamy.

If a “yomogi smoothie” doesn’t sound like it’s for you, then you can always try some kusamochi; I bought this one with the sweet azuki beans inside and coated with kinako powder – yum!

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