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Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Double Chocolate Muffin Tops (GF Vegan, oil-free, refined sugar free)

My mom told me she was craving chocolate so I decided to indulge her with a delicious yet nutrient-dense dessert. These muffin tops are allergy-friendly, fudge-y, and have a light molasses flavor. These beat Vita Tops any day! They're even picky 3-year-old approved ;)

Double Chocolate Muffin Tops (GF Vegan, oil-free, refined sugar free)

Yields: 12 | Time: 1 hour

Dry:
3/4 cup oat flour
3/4 cup almond flour
1/4 cup cocoa powder
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp pink salt

Wet:
1 cup date paste (7 large medjools *175g* and 1/4 cup+ water)
1 flax egg (1 heaping tbs golden flaxmeal + 3 tbs water)
1/4 cup blackstrap molasses*
1/3 cup plain applesauce
3 tbs choice plant milk
1.5 tbs coconut sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
72 chocolate chunks**

* If you don't like the taste of molasses, date syrup is a nutritious alternative
** I recommend Enjoy Life brand

Mix the flaxmeal and water in a small bowl. Add the dates to a small bowl of water to soak. Wait 10 minutes.
Preheat oven to 350F/177C.
Pit the dates and add to a small food processor with water. Blend until smooth.
Sift all the dry ingredients into a mixing bowl.
In another bowl, mix all the wet ingredients gently with a spoon.
Pour in half of the dry ingredients, fold, pour in the rest and fold again until incorporated.
Add a tablespoon of batter into each muffin mold (use a silicone tin so there's no sticking).
Add six chocolate chunks to each muffin and top with the remaining batter.
Bake for 26-28 minutes depending on how fudge-y you want them.
Remove from the oven and let cool/rest for 20 minutes.
Squeeze the molds gently from underneath before popping the muffins out.
Serve with a tall glass of cold plant milk!

Enjoy :)

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Nutrition facts (per muffin):
Calories: 160
Fat: 5.8
Sat: .5g
Protein: 3.5g
Carbs: 26g
  Fiber: 4g
Manganese 29% DV
Magnesium 12% DV
Potassium 14% DV
Copper 14% DV
Calcium 9% DV
Iron 12% DV
Selenium 5% DV





Update: Since these were such a big hit I decided to make them again but I realized halfway through I was out of dairy-free baking chips. Using my quick thinking I threw in some peanuts instead and they were fab! Good for those lovers of chocolate and peanut flavors together - but who isn't?

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Chole Bhature (GF V HCLF)

I love Indian night at our house! My dad and I love a good curry. My mom? She can't handle the heat. If you can't either then don't make this dish because cutting back on the heat would be chipping away at the foundation of the dish.

Serves: 3-4 | Time: 25-45 minutes

Main ingredients:
3 cups cooked chickpeas
1 cup fat-free coconut milk 
1 tsp cumin powder
1/8-1/4 cayenne powder
1/2 tsp turmeric
1 tsp garam masala
1 tsp amchur/mango powder
1/2 tsp black or pink salt
1 cup filtered water

Paste ingredients:
1 pint of grape tomatoes
1/2 medium red onion
1/2 inch ginger
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp green curry paste

Tempering spices:
2 bay leaves
2-3 whole cloves
a pinch of asafoetida/hing
1 tsp cumin seeds or 1/2 tsp ground cumin
2 inch cinnamon or 1/2 tsp ceylon cinnamon
2 green cardamom or 1/8-1/4 tsp cardamom powder
2-3 black peppercorns or 1/4 heaping tsp black pepper

Garnish:
1/4-1/2 cup chopped cilantro
Lemon slices

Soak 1-1.5 cups of dried chickpeas overnight. Cook for 30 minutes and strain. Alternately use 2 cans of precooked chickpeas. Rinse and drain those, if using. Set aside.
Blend the ingredients for the paste in a food processor, set aside. If, like me, you're sensitive to onions then you might want to pre-cook the onion.
Add the tempering spices to a hot pan and stir for a few minutes. Pour in the paste and bring to a simmer. Stir in the chickpeas.
Add the spices, water and coconut milk. Stir and cover. Simmer for 15 minutes.
Serve with coconut or plain basmati rice and garnish with chopped cilantro. This is also great with flatbreads. I steamed some carrots which my mom said was a nice touch.

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Friday, December 12, 2014

Banana Date Muffins (GF Vegan, soy free, oil free)

Ever find yourself with a lot of ripe bananas? Sure, you could freeze them and make ice cream or a smoothie, but why not do what mom did? Make banana bread! Minus the eggs, milk, and who knows what else ;)

Yields: 14 muffins or 12 muffins and 2 ramekins | Time: 40 min

1/2 cup buckwheat flour*
1/2 cup coconut flour
1/2 cup millet flour
1/4 cup brown rice flour
1 tbs baking powder
2 tsp ceylon cinnamon

4 very ripe bananas, mashed
1 cup plain applesauce
1/2 cup plant milk
1/4 cup + 2 tbs water
8 pitted medjool dates
2 tsp vanilla extract

* I buy coconut and brown rice flour, but it is healthier to mill your own. I have a coffee grinder that I use to make millet, buckwheat, teff, and other flours.

Preheat the oven to 400F/205C
Sift together the dry ingredients in a bowl. In a small food processor, add the dates and water. Blend until smooth. In a large mixing bowl, mash the bananas and add all the wet ingredients. Stir. Add half the dry ingredients to the wet, stir, and repeat. Stir well as the mix will be thick.
In a silicone muffin tray, spoon in the mix. I filled them almost completely because gf banana muffins don't rise as much as others. Brush two ramekins with coconut oil and add the remaining batter.
Bake for 30-32 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Let cool (about 30 minutes) before removing.
Enjoy with a refreshing glass of plant milk!

Adapted from:

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Monday, December 8, 2014

Coconut Carrot Curry (GF Vegan)

For those that need a good soup to warm up with this cold weather, try this creamy curry full of vitamins and warming spices.

Serves: 2-4 | Time: 40 min

13 med-large carrots
1/2-3/4 onion, chopped
1 can light coconut milk
2 cups vegetable broth
2 stalks of celery with leaves
2 large roasted red peppers
3 dried bay leaves
1/2 tsp celery seeds
1/2 tsp mustard seeds
1/2 tsp nigella sativa
2 inches organic ginger
1/2 tsp green curry paste
1/2 tsp TJ dry chili paste
1/4 tsp tamarind
1 tsp curry powder
1/2 tsp turmeric
1/4 tsp black pepper
1/4 tsp garlic powder
1/4 tsp garam masala

Grab a large pot and place over medium heat. Add just enough water to cover the bottom. When it begins to sizzle, add the bay leaves, mustard seeds, celery seeds, and nigella sativa (black cumin/kalonji). Temper for a few minutes and make sure the seeds pop. Add the veggie stock and cover.

Wash and peel (if necessary) your carrots. Dice roughly. Chop your onion as well. Mince your ginger. My mom is not a fan of how ginger tastes and my dad doesn't like the little strings you get from it sometimes. My trick is to place the ginger inside a tea leaf steeping spoon and place it in the broth for 5 minutes as it heats up. I then toss half the ginger and keep the rest. You can modify this however you want.

Now add the carrots and onions to your pot and cook for 20 minutes. We're not using a lot of stock because I don't want the end soup to be too thin and I don't want the taste of the coconut to be overwhelmed. However, you can add more liquid towards the end if you prefer it thinner.

Make sure the carrots are soft enough to blend. Remove the bay leaves and add the coconut milk, roasted red peppers, and spice pastes. I enjoy spicy food - not too spicy, but I don't mind a little burn - but if you don't then omit the chili paste. I'm using a stick blender because I'm too lazy to transfer to and from a food processor. Blend until relatively smooth (or leave it a tad chunky if you prefer). Cook for an additional 5 minutes.

Meanwhile, mince the celery. I like to add this towards the end to add a little texture to the soup. If you want a smooth soup then you'll want to add this before blending. Add the remaining spices and cook for 5 minutes. Taste and adjust spices accordingly. I didn't use too much curry powder because I want to be able to taste all the different components of the soup.

Spoon into bowls and allow to cool a bit before enjoying. Sprinkle with the celery leaves from an extra treat! This soup is perfect served with flatbreads or over basmati rice.

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Saturday, November 29, 2014

Blueberry Banana Teff Porridge (GF Vegan)

I've found a new breakfast option that's perfect for that winter weather! Personally I love a warm bowl of porridge when it's cold outside, and it's a lot cheaper than a fruit-centered meal.
This recipe features teff. The world's smallest, mineral-rich grain. I ordered a bunch to make injera (shown here) and now I'm experimenting with other recipes.
There are many variations for this teff porridge, but here are two of my favorites.

Serves: 1 | Time: 20 minutes

Blueberry Banana

3/4 cup unsweetened plant milk
3/4 cup frozen blueberries
1/2 cup whole grain teff
1/2 cup filtered water
1 tbs maple syrup*

2 small bananas, sliced
10 pecan halves, chopped
1 tbs raw hemp hearts

* make sure it's pure

In a medium sized pot, mix together the teff, plant milk, water, and maple syrup. Place over a medium heat, covered, and stir every 5 minutes.
Meanwhile, chop the bananas and ready your toppings. In the last 2 minutes of cooking, stir in the blueberries.
When thick, pour the porridge into a bowl. If you like a thinner consistency, 15 minutes should be an adequate cooking time. Top with your goodies. Enjoy!


Red, White & Blue

3/4 cup unsweetened plant milk
1/2 cup whole grain teff
1/2 cup filtered water
1 tbs maple syrup

6 raw pecans/walnuts
1 tbs raw hemp hearts
1 med banana, sliced
4 strawberries, sliced
10 blueberries

Follow the above instructions, using your brain to make the necessary changes/additions ;)

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Sunday, November 23, 2014

Spelt Berry Salad (Vegan, oil free, raw option)

I made this salad for a party today and it was a big hit with even some picky eaters. I lucked out!

Serves: 3 | Time: 10 min

2.25 cups sprouted spelt berries
2/3 cup chopped pecans/walnuts
1/2 cup dried cherries
1/4 cup 100% juice*
1/2 large apple, diced
2 celery stalks, sliced
3 tbs red wine vinegar
Salt & pepper, to taste

* I used a cherry and apple juice mix

Wash and soak 1.75 cups of spelt berries. Drain and let sit on the counter under a cloth for 36 hours, with one to two rinses. If you would like to eat these raw, I would recommend sprouting them for at least 48 hours (with an additional rinse).
Add to a pot with 4 cups of vegetable broth. Bring to a boil and then simmer for 55 minutes. Drain off any excess liquid and add the grains to a bowl. Add the fruit juice and vinegar, then chill the grains in the fridge (or bring to room temperature).
Chop all the ingredients. Add to a serving bowl with the cooled grains and dried cherries (sub chopped dates, if you prefer). Toss.
Add a crack of pepper and salt. Also pairs well with this feta cheese but I'm too lazy.

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Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Ethiopian Extravaganza (GF HCLF Vegan)

We're off!



Ethiopia is an ethnically and ecologically diverse country on the east coast of the African continent. Evidence suggests that it was from here that Homo sapiens set out for the Middle East and beyond. So let's return to our roots with a bounty of simple, healthy food.


Kik Alicha (Split Peas in Turmeric Sauce)

Serves: 4 | Prep Time: 5 min | Cook Time: 45 min

3.5 cups of water
1 cup dried split peas
1/2 med onion, minced
1/2 tsp ground turmeric
1/2 tsp granulated garlic
1 inch ginger or 1 tbs ginger paste
1/4 cup chopped cilantro (optional)

Add 3 cups of water and the rinsed split peas to a pot. Cover and bring to a boil. Crack the lid and reduce heat to medium-low. Simmer for 45 minutes.
Meanwhile, sauté your onion in a little water for 5 minutes. Add the spices and cook for another minute. Add to the cooked peas with the rest of the water.
Sprinkle in the cilantro in the last few minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste.


Atkilt Wot (Cabbage Stew)

Serves: 4 | Prep Time: 10 min | Cook Time: 30 min

1/2 head cabbage, shredded
5 gold potatoes, julienned
3 large carrots, julienned
1/2 med onion, chopped
1/2 cup veggie broth
1 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp black pepper
1/4 tsp turmeric
1/8 tsp sea salt

Chop all your veggies. In a large, nonstick pan add the cabbage and cook for 5 minutes on a medium-high heat. Add some veggie broth and the rest of the vegetables with your spices. Stir and cover. Cook for the remaining time, over medium heat, stirring every 5-10 minutes. Add the remaining veggie broth as needed.


Beet Salad

Serves: 4 | Prep: 5 min | Cook: 5 min

1 can of sliced beets
Juice of 1/2 lemon*
2 inches of jalapeño*
1/4 tsp garlic powder
Salt & pepper, to taste

* I used a lime
** I used a serrano pepper

Drain the beets. You can also use fresh beets, but I didn't have any. Add to a small bowl with the lemon juice. Cut off a piece of your pepper. Remove the seeds and mince. Add to the pot and cover. Cook on medium-low for 5 minutes.


Injera

Yields: 8 flatbreads | Inactive time: 24+ hours | Cook time: 40 min

3 cups teff flour
4 cups filtered water
1 tsp pink rock salt

I milled my own flour from whole grain teff. Because it is the world's smallest grain the amount of grain to flour is almost exact.
Whisk the teff flour and water. Cover with a tea towel secured with a rubber band. Store in a warm part of the kitchen for at least 24 hours (up to 5 days).
Add salt and whisk. Heat a non-stick griddle or tava. Pour roughly 1/2 cup of batter onto the pan and swirl. Cook for 5-6 minutes on medium-low heat. A large lid can be placed over the griddle to help steam the bread.
Injera does not need to be flipped. Yay! When the bread starts to pull away along the edges it is almost ready. Cut 8 squares of wax paper. Place one on a plate and use a spatula to transfer the injera.
Repeat with the remaining batter until you've made all the flatbreads.


To serve, use the injera as you would a plate. Arrange three circles of food around the plate. Roll a second injera in case you need extra. Tear of pieces of the spongy bread and use it as a spoon to scoop up the food and sop up any juices.

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Thursday, November 13, 2014

Roasted Veggie Ricotta Pizza (GF Vegan, soy-free option)

My mother loved the lasagne I made last week so much that I started toying with the idea of a lasagna pizza. I've never heard of a pizza with ricotta on it before, but I didn't see any reason why it wouldn't work so I tried it out. No disappointment here! It was a little messy, so we ate with a fork and knife, but if the pizza had a thick crust it would've been sturdy enough to eat with your hands.

Bon appetit!

Yields: 2 14" inch pizzas | Time: 45 min

Ricotta:
1 package silken tofu*
3 tbs nutritional yeast
3 tbs fresh lemon juice
3 tbs fresh basil leaves
1.5 tsp garlic powder
1.5 tsp onion powder
1 tsp himalayan salt
1/2 tsp black pepper 

Toppings:
1 roasted sweet pepper, sliced
1 cup cubed butternut squash
2 cups of broccoli florets
1 small zucchini, diced
1 small onion, minced
3/4 cup pizza sauce
3 tbs chopped basil 

Parmesan:
1/3 cup roasted salted cashews
3 tbs nutritional yeast flakes
1/4 tsp himalayan pink salt

* firm tofu works too but you have to add 3 tbs of water
** for those with soy allergies it is also possible to make this using cashew ricotta, but it's very high in fat, so I'd recommend making this alfredo cauliflower mash instead.

Mix the ingredients for the ricotta well with a fork or potato masher and set aside.
Chop the veggies and steam the onion, broccoli and butternut squash for 20 minutes.
If you don't have jarred roasted peppers then you can make one (or a ton) by simply deseeding a pepper and placing it skin-side down on a tray and baking for 40 minutes at 400F.
For these pizzas I used pre-made thin crusts from Trader Joe's. Typically I pre-bake my crust for at least 10 minutes before adding the toppings, but it wasn't necessary this time.
Smear on a thin layer of tomato sauce, spread the ricotta with a spatula/spoon, sprinkle on the basil, veggies and parmesan.
Bake the pizzas for 24 minutes at 400F.

Enjoy :)

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Saturday, November 1, 2014

Carrot Cake/Banana Bread Fusion! (GF Vegan, oil free, refined sugar free)

Carrot Cake Batter

90g large carrots
60g medjool dates
3 large ripe bananas
1 tbs ceylon cinnamon
1 tsp vanilla powder/extract

Soak your dates for 5 minutes while peeling the bananas and carrots. In a food processor, blitz the carrots to a fine mince. Pit the dates and add to the food processor with your bananas, cinnamon, vanilla, and blend until smooth. You can easily make this a smoothie by adding some coconut water, orange juice, water, or non-dairy milk.


Carrot Cake/Banana Bread Baby
Serves: 2-4 | Time: 1 hour

2 cups Carrot Cake Batter
1 cup gluten-free flour*
1/4 cup organic raisins
1.5 tsp raw coconut sugar
1.5 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/3 cup water

* I used oat flour but brown rice also works well

Preheat your oven to 375F.
In a small mixing bowl, mix the dry ingredients. Scoop up two cups of the batter with a measuring cup and mix it in with a fork.
Add your water and fold into the batter until the consistency is cake-like.
Add half of your batter to an un-greased 8x8 ceramic or glass dish lined with parchment/baking paper. Sprinkle the raisins in. Add the rest of the batter and smooth with a spatula if necessary.
Sprinkle the coconut sugar on top. Place in the oven and bake for 45 minutes. Turn off the heat, crack the door, and let cool before cutting.
It is normal for the cake to be somewhat moist and dense, which is typical of a banana bread.

Enjoy :)

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Thursday, October 9, 2014

Quick Cabbage Soup + Sumo Fries (Courtesy of my BF)

It's getting cold and that calls for warming recipes. This soup is very simple and satisfying. The veggies and grains give a pleasant texture while the delicate, complex broth holds everything up.

Quick Cabbage Soup

Serves: 4 | Time: 30 min

1/2 head cabbage, shredded
8 cups homemade veg broth
1 black parsnip, thinly sliced
2 colorful bell peppers, diced
1 cup precooked millet or rice
1 inch ginger, finely diced
1/2 cup unpacked cilantro
1/2 large lemon, juiced
1 tbs ground turmeric
1 tsp chili flakes

In a large stock pot over medium heat, add your vegetable broth and spices. Cover and bring to a rolling boil. Meanwhile chop the ginger and vegetables. When ready, add the remaining ingredients and cover. Cook for 20-25 minutes at a soft boil, stirring occasionally.
Add the millet, lemon juice, and cilantro. Stir and simmer for an additional 5 minutes.




Sumo Fries

Serves: 2-3 | Time: 3 hours

Basic recipe:
2 cups corn meal or grits
6 cups water
1/2 tsp salt
Extras:
1 tsp garlic powder
1/4 tsp cayenne

In a large pot, add 5-6 cups of water. Cover and put over a high heat. Pour the corn meal into a measuring cup and add the salt or spices to a small bowl. Get a whisk ready, as well as an oven mitten.
When the water is boiling, pour in the grits slowly while stirring. Cook for 5-7 minutes, adding the spices halfway through. The polenta will thicken and when the bubbles pop you may get splashed - this is why the oven mitten comes in handy. You can also turn the heat down to medium low to help combat this.
Pour into two medium-large glass, ceramic or non-stick metal pans. Long, shallow pans work best.
Refrigerate for 2-8 hours.
When ready to bake, preheat the oven to 425F. Turn the polenta out over a cutting board and cut into your desired shape. I like to make "fries."
Line two large baking trays with Silpat mats. Lay out the chips Bake for 30-45 minutes. Serve with soup, greens, and more!





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Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Veatballs + Corn Spaghetti Review (GF Vegan, soy free, oil free)

These Italian style veatballs pair well with various sauces and are simple to make. Plus they're packed with nutrients! I hope you enjoy them as much as my family did :)

Prep: 30 min | Cook: 45 min | Makes: 14 veatballs

1 cup cooked black rice
1/2 cup cooked millet
1/4 cup gf rolled oats
1/3 cup chopped pecans*
1/4 cup organic corn meal**
1 heaping tsp Italian seasoning
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp onion powder
1/2 tsp sweet paprika
1/4 tsp mustard powder
1/4 tsp ground cumin
1/4 tsp black pepper
1/4 tsp sea salt
2 tbs fresh lemon juice
2 tbs pure maple syrup
1 tbs + 1 tsp tamari***
1 tbs veggie broth

* If you have a nut allergy, you can use 1/3 cup of sunflower seeds instead.
** If you don't have corn meal, you can use brown rice or chickpea flour. Any flour works if you're not gf!
*** I buy low sodium Tamari because it's GF, but you can use soy sauce if you don't mind, or make your own vegan version of this sauce.

Cook your rice and millet, if you don't have day old grains in the fridge. In a pot, add all of your ingredients except the maple syrup, vegan cheese, and corn meal. Stir over a medium-low heat for 5 minutes until the spices are well combined.

Preheat your oven to 400F. Add the heated mixture to a large food processor, then sprinkle in the corn meal and vegan cheese. Pulse blend a few times. On a low speed, turn the machine on as you pour in the maple syrup. Don't overmix - you should be able to tell when it is beginning to come together.

Line a medium-sized baking sheet with a Silpat mat. Remove the blade from your food processor and get a spatula ready. Spray your hands lightly with water and begin to form your meatballs. They should be about 1.5-2 inches in diameter. If they are too small, they will not stay as moist.

Bake for 15 minutes, turning halfway through if you desire a more even browning (they will cook through either way). Turn off the oven and crack the door, letting the balls rest for 10 minutes. This is the perfect time to cook your spaghetti!

I recently bought 10 pounds of Heartland GF spaghetti and am very impressed by the texture. Most gluten free pastas stick together or fall apart, but this one cooked up very nicely and tasted good too.

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Friday, September 12, 2014

BBQ Sauce and Two Stellar BBQ Recipes (GF, low fat)

This BBQ sauce is a healthier alternative to store bought ones out there, it's easy to whip up, and it is also guaranteed to be vegan. It can be enjoyed on burgers, for dipping, and much more.

For the sauce, you'll need:

1 can (6 oz) tomato paste
3/4 cup of filtered water
3 tbs raw coconut sugar
1 tbs Worcestershire sauce*
2 tsp apple cider vinegar
1 tsp thai red chili sauce
1/2 tsp garam masala
1/2 tsp onion powder
1/2 tsp garlic powder
3 drops liquid smoke

* I buy this vegan one but there are also options on Amazon

Combine all the ingredients in a medium-sized pot and whisk. Cover and turn heat to medium low, simmer for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. The sauce will thicken over time.





Sloppy Joes

Serves: 2-3 | Time: 30-45 min

To make the sloppy joes you'll need to freeze a package of firm tofu overnight. Let it thaw during the day and then cut open the package. Drain over the sink, squeezing out as much moisture as you can. The tofu will be very spongy and the water should come out readily (no need to press). You can use a sieve to catch any crumbles.
Over a pot, tear the block of tofu into bite-sized pieces, almost like scrambled eggs. If the middle is still frozen then microwave for 30 seconds.
Pour the sauce over the tofu and stir gently until well coated. Let sit for 15-30 minutes to marinade.
Turn heat to medium and cook for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Serve on warm Ezekiel english muffins or homemade buns with lettuce, pickles, and cheese.



































Hawaiian BBQ Pizza

Makes: 16" pizza | Time: 2 hours

For this pizza, I made the BBQ sauce above, the only difference being I replaced the water with pineapple juice. As for a base, I used Bob's Redmill GF Pizza Crust. However, you can use whichever recipe you like for pizza dough.

Toppings:
1/3 cup baby bella 'shrooms, sliced
3 roasted sweet peppers, sliced
1/2 vidalia onion, thinly sliced
1-2 green chilies, coined
1/2 cup pineapple tidbits
1/4 cup cilantro (optional)
1/4 cup water (or more)
1 tbs raw coconut sugar
1 tsp garlic powder

Chop all of your toppings. After you prepare the dough, bake it on a pizza pan for 10 minutes at 425F.
In a large, non-stick skillet over a medium heat add the onions. Cover and cook for 5 minutes. Add some water if things are looking dry. Sprinkle the coconut sugar on top and stir. Cook for a few more minutes.
Top the pizza with BBQ sauce and caramelized onions. If using cilantro, sprinkle it onto the sauce. Add the green chilies, sweet peppers, and pineapple.
To your pan, add the mushrooms with the remaining water and garlic powder. Cover and cook for 5 minutes. Sauté for a few minutes, stirring regularly, as the mushrooms begin to brown. Add to the pizza.
Bake the pizza for 25 minutes. To add a nice golden color, finish it off with the broiler.

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Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Homemade Pita Bread

Homemade Pita Bread

Yields: 6 pitas | Total time: 2h 10m

Ingredients:
1 cup warm water
2.5 tsp pizza or active dry yeast
1.25 cups all-purpose unbleached flour

1.5 cups whole wheat or bread flour
1 tsp fine sea salt
1 tsp raw cane sugar
2 tsp dried Italian herbs
2 tsp EVOO (optional)

Equipment:
Mixing bowl
Rolling pin
Clean board
Shallow bowl
Silicone tongs
Baking sheet or stone

Instructions:
In a glass measuring cup, add one cup of warm water and 2.5 tsp of yeast. Stir and let rest for 5 minutes.
In a mixing bowl, add your flours, herbs, sugar and spice. Make a well in the middle.
Pour the yeasty water into the mixing bowl and stir with an oiled wooden spoon. A shaggy dough will form.
Turn out onto a clean board and oil your hands. Knead the dough for 5 minutes. It will come together very nicely.
Transform to an oiled bowl and cover with a cloth. Place in a warm oven or spot for 1.5 hours.

When risen, set your oven to 450F. Add a rectangular pizza stone beforehand, if using, otherwise wait to use a baking sheet.
On a lightly floured surface, turn out your dough and knead a few times. Tear the dough into six even pieces and roll quickly into balls. Sprinkle a little all-purpose flour into your shallow bowl. Flatten each ball slightly and dip both sides into the flour.
Use a rolling pin to make six 8-inch circle about 1/3 inch thick. It is possible to cook some while rolling the rest. Bake two at a time for 3.5 minutes on a hot pizza stone (or baking tray). There is no need to flip. It's awesome to watch them puff up!
I have a gas stove, so as they came out, I held them over the flame for 15-30 seconds on each side to get a nice color. Store them in a tortilla basket or pot so they stay warm as the rest cook.

Serve with baba ganoush and hummus or stuff with Israeli salad and couscous. There are many ways to enjoy these simple, delicious pita breads!

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