A Piece of Cake…

A piece of cake.  Not always!  I love working in the kitchen!  Decorating cakes is something I have recently branched out into.  When health food takes priority, food coloring disappears from the “edible” list.  I haven’t done much with other natural colorings, but when it comes to chocolate, its easy to create many different shades.

By using cocoa powder and ground coffee in my buttercream icing, I could come up with several different shades of brown.  Perfect for a guitar!

Chocolate chips make a wonderful addition!

Coffee and cocoa are, (in my opinion), awesome and edible food colorings.

This has me thinking……  What colors should I try next?  Hmmm…..

Coconut Oil Really is AMAZING!!!

Coconut oil really is AMAZING!!!  It has real power!  Not only is it a super food, it’s a super cool food! 🙂  As I was scraping some coconut oil out of the jar last night, it started sparking.  No kidding!!!  Yeah, that innocent looking coconut oil, sparking!  Each time I scraped the coconut oil with the spoon, a white spark would illuminate the area surrounding where the spoon scraped.  It was so cool!  I tried to capture a video of it to share, but unfortunately the camera couldn’t pick it up.  Who would have thought that coconut oil could do that!  Coconut oil is amazing!  It keeps surprising me with what all it can do!:)

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Chocolate Chip Cookies

Chocolate chip cookies are a favourite in our house.  This classical cookie is delicious and easy. Here’s my favourite recipe for chocolate chip cookies.

1 1/4 cup Olive Oil

1 7/8 cup Brown Cane Sugar

1 1/2 tsp. Vanilla

3 Eggs

1 1/2 tsp. Baking Powder or substitute

1 tsp. Salt

1 1/2 cups Chocolate Chips (this amount may vary)

3 cups Flour (or as much as needed to reach cookie consistency)

Mix the oil and sugar together, add in the rest of the wet ingredients.  Mix flour, salt, and baking powder together separately.  Mix the dry and wet ingredients together, then add chocolate chips.  Bake cookies in a 400* oven for 10 minutes or until done.

Baking Powder Substitute

img_0931[1].jpgSome people are allergic to corn.  Unfortunately, baking powder contains corn.  Here’s a simple substitute for baking powder that I have used in many recipes.

2 TBSP Cream of Tartar

2TBSP Arrowroot powder

1TBSP Baking Soda

Mix it up and use as a replacement for regular baking powder.  Enjoy fluffy food again!

 

Do Allergies Make You Miss Out? Not anymore with these substitutions!

Do you feel like you can’t eat because of those annoying and painful allergies?  Allergies seem to be able to make you miss out on so much, but not any more with these substitutions.  Substitutions, when done right, can transform your world!  Here are a few.

Dairy

  • Ice Cream.  Check out this dairy allergy free recipe for coconut milk ice cream here.
  • Cheese.  Try this substitution for cheese.
  • Butter.  Coconut oil makes a great substitution for butter, both as a spread, and in baking.
  • Milk.  Coconut milk or almond milk are great alternatives for milk allergies.
  • Whipped Cream.  This is a trickier one, but it can be done.  Coconut milk is again the substitution.

Corn

  • Baking powder.  Did you know that baking powder has corn starch in it?  Try this simple substitute.
  • Icing sugar.  Icing sugar also has corn starch in it.  Just take a cup of cane sugar, whiz it in the blender, add a tablespoon of arrowroot powder, and use as a normal icing sugar.
  • Corn is hidden under many names.  Maltodextrin, found in many foods, is often corn based.  Make sure you know the “secret names” and watch for them on the ingredient lists as well.

There are many allergies and many substitutions out there.  If you have any questions, or foods you are wondering about substitutions for, you can ask them in the “comment” section and I’ll see what I can do.

Top Ten Super Healthy Foods

Here’s a list of ten super healthy foods.

  1. Coconut Oil-Coconut oil is beneficial for almost anything.  Coat dry skin with coconut oil to soften and moisten your skin.  Use it internally for many things as well.  Coconut oil is full of vital medium chain fatty acids that are extremely important.  Coconut oil is one of those “use for anything” foods.
  2. Apple Cider Vinegar-Apple cider vinegar is similar to coconut oil in how beneficial it is.  Take a teaspoon of apple cider vinegar, then a teaspoon of raw honey right after to clear out a cough.  If your fighting a cold at any stage, it is a big help.  Apple cider vinegar can be used to help almost anything.
  3. AvocadoAvocado is an amazing food.  Like coconut oil, it contains similar health properties.  Slice a somewhat unripe avocado up and have on bread.  Or make a veggie dip or salad dressing.  See Super Salad Dressing under the Baking/Cooking category.
  4. Honey-Honey needs to be raw.  Raw honey has so many health benefits.  It will sooth the throat, or even help with seasonal allergies!  You can even put it on a burn to heal it scar free!  Raw, organic honey is very beneficial in many other ways too.
  5. Kale-Kale is good for many things.  It’s a super green.  It’s bitter flavor goes great with mustard on a sandwich.
  6. Yogurt-Yogurt has bacterial culture.  Sounds gross, doesn’t it?  The bacteria in the yogurt is very beneficial though.  Organic yogurt is a good brain stimulant as well.
  7. Garlic-Yes, that smelly garlic is extremely healthy.  Garlic is a good antivirus food as well as a spice.
  8. Onion-Onion is a lot like garlic.  It is also good for the immune system.
  9. Raw Nuts-Raw nuts are good protein.  They are good for many things. 
  10. Oatmeal-Oatmeal, also know as porridge, is a great start to the morning.  Oatmeal is good for the heart and a number of other things.  It can even help stabilize blood sugar levels.

Eating healthy is both beneficial and tasty.

Dairy Allergies

What drove us to healthy eating?  A large part of that was allergies.  Dairy is the number one allergy for us.  There is quite a difference though between being lactose intolerant and having a dairy allergy.  Milk is composed of four major parts, caseinates, whey, lactose, and lactase.  Casein is the main protein that is formed by caseinates interacting with alkali.  Whey is another milk protein.  It is the runny liquid that appears after the curds have been separated out.  Lactose is different.  Lactose is the sweet part of the milk, made up of glucose and galactose.  And finally lactase.  Lactase is the enzyme that splits the lactose into its two parts.  As you can see, people who are lactose intolerant can’t have the lactose portion, but that is only a portion of what milk is made up of.  Lactose intolerant people can still have milk products that have the lactose.  Don’t get me wrong, people who are lactose intolerant do have a serious problem.  The milk allergy in our house includes all of the milk.  This means no milk, cheese, or anything with dairy in it.  We have found one form of dairy that my younger siblings can have though.  Organic Old Cheddar Cheese.  Why this?  The milk in this cheese is unpasteurized.  The pasteurization process done to milk changes, and yes ruins, the milk so that they are allergic to it.  Thankfully as they grow older, they have started to outgrow a lot of the allergies.  But if pasteurization can do that, then is it actually good for those of us who aren’t allergic?

Christmas, IN COMING!!!

Christmas must be the fastest time of the year.  I’m positive time doubles it’s speed for the month of December.  Between shopping, baking, making presents, and everything else, the days become a blur.  Yep, Christmas ends up coming quite quickly.  For me, I like to ssttrreettcchh the Christmas season out a little.  It sometimes sounds weird, shopping for Christmas presents in the fall, but often there’s more variety earlier in the year.  It also gives me more time in December to do some Christmas baking.  When Christmas arrives, I can sit back and enjoy time with the family.  But in the mean time, the oven is begging me to use it.  Watch out, Christmas is IN COMING!!!

What’s your favourite part of Christmas?

Zucchini Cheese

Fall is a busy time.  Preparing for winter takes up a lot of that time.  Harvesting gardens also takes some time.  But what do you do with all the zucchini?  Of course you can add it into lots of things, but how about zucchini cheese?  Here’s a recipe I found that works great.

1 cup (7 oz.) Zucchini

1/4 cup Water

1 TBSP Coconut Oil

1 tsp Lemon Juice

Salt

1 1/2 tsp Agar powder

Steam the zucchini and water for five minutes, drain the water off.  Throw it in the blender along with the rest of the ingredients, and whiz.  If you want a cheezy sauce, it’s ready to go.  If you want cheese, throw it back in the pot and cook it for a few minutes.  Take it out of the pot and pour it very thinly onto a 9×13 parchment paper lined pan.  Let it set in the fridge for a couple hours or until firm.

Have fun and experiment!

Cinnamon Oatmeal Cookies!!!

Spicy, sweet, and simply yummy cookies!  Cinnamon, oats, and cookies go great together! Here’s a recipe for Cinnamon Oatmeal Cookies.

1 1/2 cups Oil

4 cups Sugar

4 Eggs

1 tsp. Vanilla

5 cups Flour

5 cups Rolled Oats

2 tsp. Salt

3 tsp. Baking Soda

2 tsp. Ginger

2 tsp. Cinnamon

Mix the oil and sugar together, add eggs, vanilla, and oats, then mix.  Mix dry ingredients, then add them gradually to the wet stuff.  Freeze as much dough as you want wrapped in plastic wrap and tinfoil, then shape rest into cookies and bake at 350F for 10-12 minutes.

Have fun and experiment!