Blueberry & Avocado Smoothie

by Susan on July 21, 2014

Avocado is one of my favorite smoothie ingredients, because it offers not just the obvious nutritional benefits but also helps create the perfect thick, creamy texture. Neither of my kids are huge fans of the fruit on its own, but have yet to reject a smoothie that contains it.

The secret is to use a really ripe avocado, or you run the risk of it not blending up smoothly. If you use fresh blueberries, add a few ice cubes but skip them if you’re using unthawed frozen berries.

While I used liquid vanilla stevia drops for sweetness, pure maple syrup or raw honey would work well too. As written this one is dairy and refined sugar-free. It yields enough for one really big serving or two kid-sized smoothies.

Blueberry & Avocado Smoothie

1 cup fresh or frozen blueberries
4 ice cubes (skip if using frozen berries)
1 very ripe avocado
1 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk
1 tbs. ground flax
couple drop liquid vanilla stevia
1 tsp. vanilla extract
pinch of cinnamon

Combine in a blender until smooth.

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Grain-Free Blueberry Crumble

by Susan on July 19, 2014

This treat is easy enough to make that I was able to make it up and put it together while making dinner the other night. The kids and I had gone blueberry picking in the morning and it was pretty much a given that I needed to bake something with our berry bounty for dessert!

Arrowroot or tapioca starch work double duty here: in the filling the starch helps it to gel, and in the topping it adds crispness. If you have never used either, cornstarch will work well too (use the same amount).

Our berries were very sweet so I didn’t add a lot of additional sweetener, and opted for pecans and sunflower seeds in the crumble as that’s what I had on hand. You can sweeten to your tastebuds and use whatever nuts and seeds you like with delicious results.

Either butter or coconut oil will work for the crumble topping (using the latter keeps things vegan/dairy-free). This would taste great with an whipped or ice cream topping, but we opted to just enjoy it plain.

I proportioned the ingredients to fill four ramekins. If you want to bake your crumble in a large baking dish I would suggest doubling it.

Grain-Free Blueberry Crumble

filling:
3 cups fresh blueberries
2 tbs. arrowroot or tapioca starch
juice of 1/2 lemon
2 tbs. pure maple syrup
1/2 tsp. vanilla
pinch of cinnamon and freshly ground nutmeg
crumb topping:
1/2 cup total raw nuts and seeds (I used pecans and sunflower seeds)
1 tbs. ground flax
1/3 cup almond meal
2 tbs. arrowroot or tapioca starch
pinch of salt
1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp. ground freshly grated nutmeg
1-2 tbs. palm sugar
3 tbs. chilled butter or coconut oil, cut into pieces

Preheat oven to 350. Grease ramekins or baking dish.

Mix berries with starch to thoroughly coat them. Stir in remaining ingredients.

Pour this mixture into your prepared ramekins or dish.

Add nuts to a food processor and pulse just until they are broken down to small pieces (but not a powder). Add all remaining ingredients except butter or oil and mix again until combined.

Add butter or coconut oil and pulse mixture just until it has been incorporated but chunks of the fat still remain.

Drop crumble evenly on top of blueberry mixture. Bake at 350 for 40-45 minutes or until filling has firmed up and topping is golden brown. Allow to cool before serving.

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Pizza Zucchini Bake

July 18, 2014

I think my kids are a little done with zucchini this week. The boy saw me grating it for tonight’s dinner and asked why we couldn’t switch the week’s theme (he made the good point that we picked fresh blueberries this morning and should really put them to good use). So I think this will [...]

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Summer Squash & Corn Chowder

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I am not a sneaky chef by nature. I like my kids to be aware of the good things they’re eating, especially when it’s a food or dish they claim or believe to dislike beforehand. Sure, sometimes I slip a little spinach or ground flax into a smoothie. And I often up the veggie quotient [...]

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Sausage-Stuffed Zucchini Boats

July 16, 2014

I’m a huge fan of stuffing fruits and vegetables, having made everything from stuffed peppers, mushrooms, squash, tomato and avocado. For some reason I never thought to use zucchini for the purpose, perhaps because they tend to be so skinny. I stocked up on some sturdier squash for this Skinnytaste recipe, and it’s definitely a [...]

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Chicken Pad Thai with “Zoodles “(Recipe Revisit)

July 15, 2014

I’ve been meaning to repost this recipe for a while, and it was a natural fit as I’m featuring zucchini recipes this week. You can make this recipe with all rice noodles or half rice and zucchini noodles (“zoodles”), but my kids don’t even notice when I make it with all zucchini. There are so [...]

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Chocolate Chip Zucchini Muffins

July 14, 2014

I love baking with zucchini because it adds moisture to cakes and muffins without an overwhelmingly “veggie” taste. My kids aren’t the hugest fans of zucchini in its purest state, but have never turned down a brownie or cake that I’ve made with it! Zucchini is especially useful in grain-free baking, as it really helps [...]

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Sriracha & Lime Chicken Salad

July 12, 2014

My kids don’t like spicy foods, so I tried this recipe out one night they were at their dad’s house. I had found it on Pinterest and thought it looked drool-worthy. The marinade of sriracha and lime couldn’t be easier, and added both a ton of flavor to the chicken while keeping it moist too. [...]

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Grain-Free Belgian Waffles

July 11, 2014

I’ve meant to post this recipe for a while now, but vacation, July 4th and camp got in the way. I’m looking forward to next week, when the kids and I have nowhere to be in the mornings and I can make them healthy breakfasts like these waffles. I’m also looking forward to getting my [...]

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Pizza Margherita

July 10, 2014

If you’re unfamiliar, pizza margherita is (in my opinion) the way all cheese pizza should be. Fresh basil, fresh mozzarella… bursting with flavor and as simple as it is mouthwateringly perfect. It seemed like the perfect meal to make on a hot summer day, and I even had a little chef to help me make [...]

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