Sunday, January 24, 2010

Sweet Tooth- Peanut Butter Cups

When the new year is upon us it gives us this little extra incentive to better the places in our lives where we can improve. For some of us that might be traveling more, taking more time for ourselves, and maybe possibly eating better. I bet it's safe to say that eating right is the number one place in our lives we resolve to be better. That's what happened at our house this year, for the most part we do really well, but my sweet loving man has a major sweet tooth. So much so that if I ask him to run to the store he can't help but stop by the bulk candy section, and then tries to unwrap the candies in the pocket of his sweat shirt to not get caught. Seriously. I finally had a come to Jesus talk with him and my mom about there love affair with Red Vines, these two were like animals when it came to this crap, double fisting it. Sorry but candy is not supposed to be an everyday treat, and my sweet husband was partaking in the candy dish at work EVERYDAY! So when January 1 rolled around I asked him to give up sugar for thirty days. I wasn't sure if he could do it the first week he came home with a headache, damn withdrawals. He stayed strong and as far as I know he's been on the straight and narrow. But I didn't want him to feel deprived, all things in moderation, so I thought I would offer him some healthy, creative, responsible alternatives, after all I love that man of mine and I want him to remember where the sweet love resides... at home! So this next is one of the alternatives we have been enjoying.

This first one comes from one of the new cookbooks I got for Christmas, The Kind Diet, by Alicia Silverstone. I was so impressed with this cookbook, it gives options for where ever you are on you conscious eating journey. Billy can't keep his hands off these. Enjoy.

-Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups- a.k.a. Reese's Peanut Butter Cups

1/2 c. Earth Balance butter
3/4 c. crunchy peanut butter (preferably unsweetened and unsalted)
3/4 c. graham cracker crumbs or 10 graham cracker squares
1/4 c. maple sugar, (I used agave nectar)
1 c. grain sweetened, nondairy chocolate or carob chips
1/4 c. soy, rice or nut milk (I used soymilk)
1/4 c. chopped pecans, almonds, or peanuts

1. Line a 12 cup muffin tin with paper liners, set aside.
2. Melt butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. Stir in peanut butter, graham cracker crumbs, and sugar or agave, mix well and remove from the heat.
3. Divide the mixture, about 2 T. per cup among the muffin cups.
4. Combine the chocolate and milk in a small saucepan over low-med heat, stir until chocolate starts to melt. Turn off heat and continue to stir until completely melted.
5. Spoon chocolate mixture over the peanut butter mixture and top with chopped nuts.
6. Place in the fridge to set for at least two hours before serving.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Cosmo Hippie Chef Recipe Alert- Raw Buckwheat Cereal

This recipe comes from my good friend Gwen, she is always sharing her new finds in the healthy food world. I was looking for something new, fast, healthy and portable for breakfast during the week for Billy and I, this hit the mark. It's probably going to be new for you, it was new for us but we love it.

-Raw Buckwheat Cereal-

1/4 c. buckwheat groats (I find these in the bulk section of Whole Foods or Good Earth)
1-2 tsp. sunflower seeds
1-2 tsp. gogi berries

Place all these ingredients in some kind of container with a lid. Fill the container with water just above the ingredients and place the lid on and soak overnight. In the morning drain off the water trying not to spill out the ingredients, rinse 2-3 times with fresh water and drain again. When you've drained all the water off top with these ingredients. Enjoy!

1/4. soy, hemp, rice or nut milk
1 T. pure maple syrup, or agave nectar
1-2 tsp. pumpkin seeds
2 T. coconut flakes
a pinch of nutmeg
a shake of cinnamon
1/2 banana

When strawberries and raspberries are in season I use those with or instead the banana.

Coffee is Love

Coffee is love at our house on the weekend, I say that because we don't drink it on a daily basis so when Saturday gets here we can't wait for our coffee love. I learned during the holiday break that to much of a good thing can be too much including coffee. So for me I'm glad we treat Saturday and Sunday morning as though there a treat and treat ourselves to something sweet and nice. All things in moderation makes us appreciate the love.

This is how we love up our coffee on the weekends, try it for yourself and you'll never want to pay for a coffee shop coffee again.

Fresh brewed coffee
2 tsp. vanilla or spiced chai powder
2 tsp. mocha, vanilla or regular Kahlua
2 T. soy creamer

All of this goes into a single cup, Enjoy!

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Happy New Year- Vegan Eggnog

Wow where does the time go? I hope you all had a great holiday season, filled with lots of love and food. We had a relaxing indulgent one of our own. I'm glad to be back on track and excited for the new year to come. Don't you think it's cool that every year we are given time to reflect and plan for a better year or a better us? The funny thing is that we are given that time everyday to reflect and improve. Isn't life awesome?!

I received two great cookbooks for Christmas and look forward to sharing some new recipes. Here's one I made during the holidays, and I got it from one of the blogs I follow 'Elana's Pantry'.

It's fun, unique and of course delicious. Enjoy.

Vegan Eggnog ( I know what your thinking, try it anyways!)

3 c. almonds
4 c. water
1 T. vanilla extract
2 T. agave nectar
2 T. yacon syrup
2 t. grated fresh, or ground nutmeg
1/4 t. cinnamon, ground
pinch cloves, ground

1. Soak almonds overnight.
2. Discard soaking water and rinse almonds in a deep bowl of water, repeat until water is clear.
3. Place soaked almonds and 4 cups of water in a vita-mix, or a blender.
4. Blend on highest speed for 90 seconds.
5. Strain milk through a fine mesh paint bag, (I used cheesecloth). Discarding solids.
6. Place almond milk in a half gallon mason jar, add vanilla, agave, yacon, nutmeg, cinnamon and cloves, then shake well.
7. Refrigerate until cold and serve.