Tag Archives: eating healthy

Baked potato-kale soup with sweet cornbread

Our very needy no 2 has reached a point where she doesn’t want to fall asleep or relax without somebody holding her all day long. It got to a point when my back said NO MORE! PLEASE!!!

A few days ago our no 2 was screaming her lungs out while I was trying to ignore her. Our no 1 got upset as well just because no 2 was upset!

Seeing that miserable family portrait my husband digged out an old swing chair.

A day later he went out and bought batteries.

I’m saved!

And finally I have two free hands to write posts and comments 🙂

Yeay!

But I need to be fast, these days. Those quite times do not last long.

So,

I made a soup. I made it twice, so far. It tasted better the first time I made it. I think I overcomplicated it the second time, so I’ll share the simplest recipe.

I am too lazy (or I do not have much time these days) to experiment with cooking kale or spinach so I simply throw it into a jar with a smoothie or soup, blend it all together and call it good food.

That’s exactly what I did with this soup. The only thing you have to really prepare here are the potatoes. The rest of the ingredients don’t have to be cooked at all.

Ingredients:

2 medium red potatoes, baked with skins *

1 3/4 cup warm milk,

4 oz cheddar cheese,

1/4 yellow sweet onion, peeled

2 big leaves kale (about a cup)

salt and pepper to taste

plain yogurt (optional for garnish)

1 Tbsp almonds, chopped (optional for garnish)

 

* this soup taste awesome when it’s made from potatoes cooked on the grill (wrapped in an aluminum foil with some salt and butter and cooked on the grill for about 25-30 minutes).

Directions:

Throw everything to a blender and blend the heck out of it. Garnish with yogurt or almonds and serve.

If you want that soup to be very warm or hot it needs to be transferred to a pot and heated up.

I served it with homemade sweet cornbread. I used this recipe to which I added 1/4 cup chia seeds and 1/4 flax-seed meal.

My husband LOVES  Marie Callender’s cornbread so I was hoping for somehow close final effect but it wasn’t that good. The taste was sweet and pretty comforting, I would say, but the texture was too grainy. I think I used the wrong cornmeal. I’m not sure. I will try to make it again but definitely I’m going to use a different recipe. 

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Homemade granola bars


My husband loves to snack on granola bars.

He likes to snack in general. Watching movie – snacking. Bored – snacking. Working in front of the computer – snacking. So he always likes to have things to snack on. Chips, granola bars, pop-tarts, chocolate chips cookies, trail-mix. If for some reason we do not have any of those things he will go through our kitchen cabins every 10 minutes trying to find something. It looks like he has an amnesia and he doesn’t remember that 10 minutes ago he did the same and in those 10 minutes nothing has changed in our kitchen. No snack magically appeared.

One day we decided to try to make granola bars. It’s cheaper and much healthier. Granola bars I made are packed with calories but, at least, I know and can pronounce every single ingredient.

chilling in the fridge before cutting into bars


cut and ready to eat

Ingredients for the granola bars:

  • 1 cup oat flour (or 1 cup oats finely ground in blender or food processor)
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 salt
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 2 Tbsp unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup unpacked brown sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened apple sauce (I used homemade)*
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 cups quick oats
  • 1/2 cup raisins
  • 1/2 chopped mixed nuts (of your choice)

for the glaze

4 oz milk chocolate bar

or

6 oz semisweet (or milk chocolate) chocolate chips

1 Tbsp milk

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 350°; line a 9 x 9 baking pan with a parchment paper, long enough to go up over the sides. Lightly spray with oil.

2. In a medium bowl, whisk together oat flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and cinnamon.

3. In a large bowl, with a mixer cream together the butter and the sugar on medium speed.  

4. Add the egg followed by the honey, applesauce* and vanilla extract.

5. Working by hand, stir in the flour mixture and the oats until just combined and no streaks of flour remain; stir in raisins and nuts.

6. Spoon oats onto prepared baking dish, flattening to make even. Bake for about 23-25 minutes, or until light brown at the edges. They will seem soft and undercooked, but once they cool they will set completely.

7. While the granola cake is cooling melt over double bath and constantly stirring the chocolate bar or chocolate chips with 1 Tbsp milk.

8. When everything is evenly melted and there is no remaining pieces of chocolate pour the mixture over the top of the granola cake and spread it around with a knife.

9. Let it cool overnight or in the fridge for a few hours.

10. Cut into desire pieces.

The first time I made it I forgot to add the oats at the end and we ended up with mushy mixture with granola like taste that we had to eat with a spoon.

The second time I used regular oats instead of quick and for my taste it came out too dry.

Next time I’m going to try out this recipe: no-baked chewy granola bars. Will see which one are better 🙂


* to make an applesauce just enough for this recipe
:

In a saucepan, combine peeled, cored and cut into small cubes 1 apple, 3 Tbsp water (I always use orange juice), 1/4 tsp cinnamon. Cover, and cook over medium low heat for 15 minutes, or until the apple is soft. While cooking check if more water (juice) is needed. If yes, add 1 Tbsp. Allow to cool, then mash with a fork or potato masher.

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Recipe adapted from Skinny taste.

Homemade french bread with creamy spinach soup

Yesterday I woke up with a dilemma. I wanted to bake something but I wasn’t sure if I prefer sweet over savory. I got a new recipe for oatmeal cookies but… I kinda crave good fresh bread (all the time). Then I remembered that my oven is terribly dirty from the day before. My potatoes casserole (the only word I can describe that dish with) overflowed and made an awful mess inside the oven.

I turned on the self-cleaning mode which takes 4:30 hours. My dilemma found a natural solution. I couldn’t bake anything… and I knew that after noon my energy level takes huge dive to the abyss but, it was still morning and I wanted to make something to eat for myself as my headache started to poking me a little. There was nothing special in the pantry or in the fridge that I wanted to eat… . With this pregnancy I am so picky with food it’s just crazy. I want very specific things and if they are not at the house I won’t eat anything else… . It wasn’t that way with my first pregnancy.

One thing, though, have called me every single time I opened the fridge (and even when it was closed). Spinach! It was a few days old spinach as I bought it with the plan to make stuffed with spinach and mushroom crepes. Days went by and I actually lost my craving for those crapes and didn’t have any “B plan” for my spinach.

So yesterday, while the oven was getting clean I decided to make spinach soup. I looked for a good recipe on google and I found this one. It was really quick to make.

This recipe calls for fat-free everything…, but I do not have those things in my kitchen. I do not like to spend my money on something that looks like milk but taste like water… .

For this soup I used whole milk, and regular vegetable broth. Instead of baby spinach I used 1 bunch of not so fresh regular spinach, and I substituted the onion for a few green onions. That’s it! Super delicious and creamy spinach soup.

I garnished it with extra green onion and plain whole milk yoghurt.

JUST DELICIOUS!

I ate two bowls… dreaming about having fresh baked bread with it…

…and my dream came true. After my oven was clean and ready to use I decided to make super easy french bread so I could enjoy my soup even more. Luckily I had some left overs for the dinner for my husband to eat because after making that bread I was done for the day!

Just a few minutes and the dough was ready.

For the full recipe go here. It’s a great tutorial (video) how to make it.

For some healthy kick I enriched the dough with fresh chopped basil and whole ground flaxseed meal (about 1/2 cup).

At the end I forgot to brush it with egg white and cut the top before baking… It still came out great, though.

Today I used it to make bruschetta with cheddar cheese, tomatoes and green onion for my husband’s lunch. He LOVE IT! I didn’t have the time to take a picture of it… but I assure you it looked and tasted (in my husband’s opinion) great!

Ah… and my daughter loved that bread. Fresh and warm… She ate 3 slices 🙂

Now is my turn to have a bowl of my soup and a few slices of bread. It looks like tomorrow I’ll have to bake another loaf 😉

Have a great weekend!

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