Sunday, October 21, 2012

How to Make Almond Flour + Muffin Recipe

I really wanted to purchase some almond flour the other day, but a small bag at the local natural food store was $11.50 (plus tax), and I wasn't about to spend $11.50 (plus tax) just so I could make ten muffins.

Instead, I decided to make my own almond flour, which was still a lot more expensive than buying wheat flour, but I was able to save about $4.50 by buying slivered almonds.  I bought three packages from the baking aisle of my grocery store, which was 18 ounces of slivered almonds for $7.00.

I put them, one package at a time, into my food processor.

I processed them until they were a uniform powder consistency, and stopped as soon as I saw the slightest inclination of clumping (I didn't want to accidentally make almond butter).  The result looked like this:

You would get better results from a vitamix if you have one.  The vitamix can get it into a smooth powder within about 20 seconds, but the food processor is going to leave it with a grittier texture.

After I had done all three packages (18 ounces), I had this jar full + 1 additional cup.

That's it.  That's how you make almond flour.  You can do this with whole almonds, too, but there will be little brown flecks from that outer shell covering (it doesn't effect taste/consistency, though).

Now here's a recipe you can use your home made almond flour in!

In a large bowl, combine your dry ingredients.  First, 3 cups of almond flour:

1 tsp of baking soda, and 1 tsp of baking powder:

1/2 tsp of salt (I always eye-ball it from the grinder):

In a separate bowl, mix the wet ingredients.  I put them all in my food processor to ensure the bananas were thoroughly mashed (okay, actually I just hate mashing bananas by hand).

First, 3 eggs:

Then, 3 over-ripe bananas:

1/4 cup of maple syrup and 1/4 cup of honey:

1/4 cup of coconut oil (or butter, if you so desire):

1 tsp vanilla:

Now combine wet and dry ingredients, mixing just slightly until combined.

Distribute the batter between 12 muffin cups:

Bake at 350 for 20 minutes:

The result is REALLY delicious!  I'm so glad I was finally able to try almond flour!  Yes, the texture of the flour is a tad bit gritty, but I didn't mind it at all.  Neither did my kids. :)

Almond Flour Banana Muffins 

3 cups almond flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp sea salt
3 eggs
3 very ripe bananas, mashed
1/4 cup honey
1/4 cup maple syrup
1/4 cup coconut oil or butter (melted)
1 tsp vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350F.  Grease a 12-cup muffin tin.  Mix dry ingredients in a large bowl.  Mix wet ingredients in a medium bowl.  Add wet mixture to dry mixture.  Stir just to combine.  Fill muffin cups.  Bake for 20 minutes.

This didn't occur me until after I was already eating them, but you might want to add a tsp of cinnamon and a couple tablespoons of ground flax seeds!

Saturday, June 30, 2012

Meal Plan: June 30 - July 7

Saturday, June 30:
Breakfast: Fried Eggs and Whole Wheat Toast
Lunch: Oatmeal
Dinner: Crockpot BBQ Chicken, Mashed Potatoes, Garlic Toast

Sunday, July 1:
Breakfast: Sweet Potato Streusal Muffins
Lunch: Pizza Bagels
Dinner: Potato Soup

Monday, July 2:Breakfast: Pancakes, Bacon, Blueberries
Lunch: Cheesy Crackers, Hummus, Cottage Cheese
Dinner: Beefy Enchilada Bake

Tuesday, July 3:
Breakfast: Baked Oatmeal Cups
Lunch: PBJ
Dinner: Taco Rice

Wednesday, July 4:
Breakfast: French toast
Lunch: Sloppy joes
Dinner: Alfredo

Thursday, July 5:
Breakfast: Whole wheat donuts
Lunch: Hot dogs
Dinner: Lasagna Casserole

Friday, July 6:
Breakfast: Scrambled eggs, toast
Lunch: Chewy bars, string cheese, apple slices
Dinner: Hamburgers and homemade french fries

Saturday, July 7:
Breakfast: Waffles
Lunch: Pizza pockets
Dinner: Tuna Casserole

Friday, May 25, 2012

Six Day Meal Plan, May 26th - 31st

Breakfast: Pancakes, eggs, bacon
Lunch:  Peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, applesauce
Dinner:  Crockpot Chili with golden crescent rolls.

Breakfast: Baked Oatmeal Cups, blueberries
Lunch: Leftover chili with rice and string cheese.
Dinner: Cheesy Turkey Sausage Stromboli (turkey sausage)

Breakfast:  Fried egg sandwiches, avocado
Lunch: Left over Stromboli
Dinner: Crockpot BBQ Chicken (italian salad dressing, bbq sauce)

Breakfast: Bagels with cream cheese (make the bagels the night before), strawberries
Lunch: Left over chicken
Dinner:  Beefy Enchilada Bake with Homemade Corn Tortillas

Breakfast: Cheerios, scrambled eggs, kiwi
Lunch: Left over enchilada
Dinner:  Easy Alfredo

Breakfast:  Sweet potato streusel muffins, bananas
Lunch: Left over alfredo
Dinner: Cheese pizza: doughsauce

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

May 8: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

This morning for breakfast we had fruity vanilla oatmeal with fruit kabobs.  The oatmeal was really good, and the fruit kabobs were a hit with the 5-year-old, although he requested no yogurt or coconut flakes on his.  My daughter is so anti-fruit it isn't even funny, so she wouldn't touch these, but she liked the oatmeal.

For lunch, we made cheesy crackers and apple chips.

My adorable little helper here, in his Lego Star Wars underwear, measured the ingredients and mixed the dough for the crackers.  I rolled the dough into a log and sliced, then pressed on each cracker with a fork.

These were awesome!  It's pretty amazing that you can make such a delicious cracker with just three simple ingredients.  The kids and I topped them with cottage cheese which I think complimented them perfectly.

At the same time we were making the crackers, we were also making the apple chips.

I put the apple juice on the stove to start boiling and cut the apples into thin slices.  The instructions said not to worry about seeds because they would fall out during boiling, but that was not the case for us so I would recommend removing the seeds.

After boiling, we layed them on cookie sheets and pat them dry, then set them in the oven at 250 degrees.  We were waiting for them to be "dry and brown," and meanwhile we made, baked, and ate the crackers, and it was still another hour before the apples even looked remotely done.

 And after all that waiting, the kids did NOT like them!  Bummer!  I thought they were okay.  I'm just not a huge fan of dried fruit.  Neither are my kids, apparently.

I decided I really really wanted to try making home made ramen.  I mixed up the dough for the noodles and tried to cut them as thin as I could.

Not very thin, huh?  These look more like soba than ramen!

I cooked them in some homemade chicken broth and added soy sauce.

The result: the broth was amazing, I was chugging it.  The noodles were not so great. :)  I don't know if it was the recipe that was a bummer, or if I am just a terrible ramen noodle maker! ha.

For dinner, I had no idea what I was doing.  I kept searching around for recipes, but I didn't have the right ingredients, or the ingredients were heavily processed foods, and I was so tired I didn't want to put a ton of effort into anything. Waah.  I threw a life line out to my facebook friends, and decided to try taco rice per a suggestion.  Of course, none of the recipes I found were entirely "suitable" so I had to wing it a little bit.  Here is what I did:  I browned 1 pound of ground turkey in my cast iron skillet, then added 1.5 cups of chicken broth, 1 can of tomato sauce, cumin, red pepper, and onion powder.  I let that simmer for awhile and meanwhile had brown rice in the rice maker.  When the rice was done, I added 2 cups of cooked rice and 8 oz. of grated cheese.

It was really good!  The kids and I topped ours with sour cream.   I was simultaneously making these sweet potato crescent rolls, which I highly, highly recommend!  

They are very fall tasting... you know, Thanksgiving-ish.  I guess you wouldn't normally pair taco with sweet potato, but whatever.  The kids liked the rolls.  Nobody complained about the taco rice, either.

Friday, May 4, 2012

Meal Plan

Day 1 - Sunday
Breakfast: French toast, scrambled eggs, strawberries
Lunch: Brown rice bears with grapes and edamame
Dinner: Turkey Meatloaf Muffins, green beans

Day 2 - Monday
Breakfast: Bacon, Egg and Avocado Salad with homemade ranch
Lunch: Veggie Humus Wrap
Dinner: BBQ chicken, sweet potato cresent rolls

Day 3 - Tuesday
Breakfast: Fruity Vanilla Oatmeal and Yogurt Kabobs
Lunch: Apple chips, cottage cheese on Easy Cheesy Crackers
Dinner:  Enchiladas, homemade corn chips, salsa

Day 4 - Wednesday

Breakfast: Organic whole-wheat cereal, orange-pineapple-vanilla smoothie
Lunch: Homemade graham crackers, banana slices
Dinner: Potato Soup, cornbread muffins

Day 5 - Thursday
Breakfast: Fried eggs, bacon, kiwi
Lunch: Risotto Butternut Squash
Dinner: Hamburgers and homemade fries

Day 6 - Friday
Breakfast: Pancakes, scrambled eggs, homemade turkey sausage,s
Lunch: Peanut Butter & Fruit Roll Up
Dinner: Empanadas

Thursday, May 3, 2012

I have never had banana custard before, much less made it.  But it sounded like a kid-friendly breakfast to me. I mean, it's basically banana pudding, right?

After I blended all the ingredients together, I poured them into glass bowls, set them in a water bath, and baked them for 45 minutes.

I don't think they were entirely done, though, because they were just slightly liquidy in the middle.  The baby ate it just fine, but the older two turned up their noses.  Which was fine, because I loved it, and I didn't mind eating two all to myself at all.  Except that eggs make you sleepy.  Did you know that?  Eggs contain tryptophan.  I went to bed really early that night.

So my custard was a fail for the kids, but I had high hopes for lunch: salmon patties.  I had planned on buying canned salmon and making my own patties, but then I found these:

Wild salmon patties made with organic vegetables!

From a local and sustainable source!

I fried them in a cast iron skillet with a little olive oil and served them with avocado.  Three salmon patties and two organic avocados fed all four of us.  The kids actually ate the salmon, pretty impressive.

For dinner last night, I tried to make popcorn chicken, but it basically came out as chicken nuggets.  Served with mashed potatoes.

Oh, man.  I have to tell you about this smoothie I made today.  It's really basic, but it tasted exactly like an orange julius.  It was like a perfectly creamy probiotic orange julius!  I simply blended milk kefir with raw milk and fresh squeezed orange juice and added vanilla and oh my goodness.  Delicious.

And tonight... tonight for dinner I made a lasagna casserole and threw together these no rise dinner rolls.

This casserole was reeeally easy (I don't know why, but I don't like cooking or layering lasagna noodles...) and reeeally yummy.   The rolls were okay, definitely good for a quick "on the spot" side.  I smothered them in really creamy pastured butter & the kids were in heaven.

Monday, April 30, 2012

Cinnamon Rolls, Oatmeal, Pizza Pockets and Chocolate Milk

On Sunday morning, I happened to be woken up rather early by the baby, which gave me a chance to bake these bad boys before anyone else woke up:

That, my dear people, is a delicious array of whole wheat cinnamon rolls, sweetened with coconut palm sugar.

And now here they are smothered in ooey gooey frosting (made from homemade powdered sugar, which was made from unrefined sugar).

This was my first time making cinnamon rolls with whole wheat flour.  I was nervous they would taste too... wheaty.   But honestly, by the time I was biting into my fourth one I couldn't even taste the wheat anymore. So gooooood.

On Monday morning, I made the kid's and I some peanut buttery banana oatmeal stuff.  I cooked the oats in a mixture of milk and cinnamon, then added honey, maple syrup, peanut butter and banana slices.

This was a risky breakfast.  First of all, because my kids don't really like oatmeal.  Secondly, because my kids don't like bananas.  How frustrating is that?  It's something I'm trying to change, by making them eat it.  Is that horrible?  I actually sat at the table and spoon-fed my 5-year-old.  I told him he was a robot and every bite he ate was an "energy deposit" and I would do something comical (like a failed hyper-blast, or an out-of-control zig-zag, etc) and he was laughing so hard, he didn't even notice he ate more than half the bowl.  I win.

We had pizza pockets for dinner.  They are so easy to make.

This is the dough, which I made out of 3.5 cups of flour, 1 cup of plain yogurt, 1 cup of melted butter, and a tsp of salt.  Mixed well, then separated into small balls.  I think the rest is pretty self-explanatory.

Baked at 350 degrees for 25 minutes. I made a very simple salad to go with it.

I have no idea why, but after this meal I really needed some chocolate.  I decided to make some chocolate milk, and realized I haven't shared how I make it yet.

I start with 2 cups of milk:

And add 2 tablespoons of cocoa and 2 tablespoons of honey:

Blend on high for a few minutes and that's it!

This chocolate milk is darker and richer than what you buy in the store, and is definitely much fuller-flavored than something you'd mix up with artificial syrup!