The Best Homemade Chicken Pot Pie

This is from the Paleo Comfort Foods Cookbook by Julie and Charles Mayfield. My husband swears that it is better than any store bought pie he’s ever eaten.  It is a little time consuming to make but it makes enough to freeze for at least one more meal, maybe even two, so it’s worth the effort up front.

 

For the topping

2 cups of almond flour (I buy blanched almonds and grind in my electric coffee bean grinder, it’s significantly cheaper)

1/2 cup olive oil 1 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon sea salt

For the filling

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 tablespoon garlic, minced

1 1/2 cups onion/chopped

3 cups mushrooms, coarsely chopped

1 cup carrots, chopped

1 cup celery, chopped

2 cups broccoli florets, chopped

2 pound cooked chicken breasts, chopped in small pieces (buy boneless)

3 cups chicken stock

1 teaspoon parsley

1/2 teaspoon black pepper

1 tablespoon coconut flour

Oven should be preheated to 350.  Mix almond flour, olive oil, baking soda and salt in a small bowl.  To make your crust, roll out the dough on wax paper into a sheet large enough to cover the casserole dish of your choosing.  Place in the fridge until you are ready to cover the other ingredients.

Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in large skillet and saute garlic and onion.  Once they have softened, add mushrooms and cook for  few minutes.  Add carrots, celery, and broccoli and continue to cook for another 5 minutes.  when they begin to cook through, add the chicken, stock, parsley, and pepper.  Add coconut flour to thicken mixture and let simmer 10 minutes.  Pour all ingredients into casserole dish and place dough over top.  Bake for 25-30 minutes.

Delicious Summer Salad

I know I’m in the middle of writing my series, I Know What to Do…I Just Don’t Do It but I came across this delicious summer salad and felt compelled to share it with you!

As far as I’m concerned, this is the best time of year when it comes to food.  It is so easy to get the minimum requirement of 5 fruits and vegetables when there are so many choices!  Strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, peaches, nectarines, plums,  cherries, watermelon, cantaloupe, honeydew, corn on the cob,  the list goes on and on!

As a reminder, try to by organic when you can, particularly the thin skin fruits like the berries and the fruits with pits like peaches and plums. Also, look for organic corn on the cob, otherwise it is likely to be genetically modified and therefore may not be as healthy a choice.  If you want to learn more about genetically modified foods, go to www.responsibletechnology.com to read more.

This salad recipe is light, refreshing, easy to make and pretty to look at.  I hope you try it and enjoy it as much as I do!

Mango, Jicama and Avocado Salad

1 jicama-peeled and cut into small pieces (pronounced hee-ka-ma it is a root plant that is crunchy like a radish and a little bit starchy.  Sometimes called the Mexican potato.  You should be able to find it at most grocery stores).

1 mango

1 avocado

Cilantro (optional)

1 tsp. Ancho chili powder (optional)

Jalapenos (optional)

Juice of one lime

Salt and pepper to taste

Cut equal amounts of jicama, avocado, and mango and mix in bowl.  Add a handful of chopped cilantro, salt and pepper to taste.  Drizzle lime juice over it all and toss.  Serve immediately or chilled. Yum!

Taken from the Atlanta Journal Constitution which was adapted from a recipe from “America’s Test Kitchen”.

 

Wow! This is NOT Your Mother’s Cauliflower!

Cruciferous vegetables are very important for your health.  Those are vegetables like broccoli, cauliflower, brussel sprouts, bok choy, cabbage, and kale.  We all know we need to eat them but yuck!  How many times can you steam a head of broccoli?  And brussel sprouts? Most people will wrinkle their noses.  I want to share with you some of the wonderful things that these little gems can do for you.

They are high in Vitamins A, C, and K.  They are also high in fiber.  They also have small amounts of protein and Omega 3 (like salmon) fats. They are a great bang for the buck and the amount of nutrients you get for a serving.

I do know that many people cringe over eating these vegetables.  I love cauliflower, but I get tired of eating it steamed or chopped raw into a salad.  I have made mashed cauliflower before, it makes a great mashed potato substitute, and decided I wanted to make it again for lunch.  I have to share a secret with you:  I am not a great cook!  I am a “read the recipe and follow it” kind of girl.  I’ve never mastered that art of ” a little of this and a little of that”.  So, I decided I’d better not go from memory but find a recipe on-line.  I found a great one and I am sharing it with you today!  This did not take long to make and it was so delicious.  I cut the recipe in half, since I only had one head of cauliflower, but I still had enough for two meals, so it was worth  the little bit of effort .  This recipe is now going to be in my weekly rotation.  I hope you like it as much as I do!

Cauliflower “Mashed Potatoes”

Serves 4

2 medium-sized heads of cauliflower, washed and chopped into
florets

1-2 tablespoons
melted coconut oil*

2 tablespoons nutritional yeast (optional)

1/2 teaspoon sea salt

Fresh black pepper to taste

Herbs to taste (I like rosemary and thyme)

*Note: I say go for two tablespoons of coconut oil – it’s practically the only calories in the whole dish, and coconut oil is comprised of medium-chain fatty acids that your body metabolizes instead of storing as fat. Of course,  you can also use another
fat like Earth Balance or olive oil if you prefer, but I’ve found that coconut oil gives these “potatoes” the buttery, crave-worthy flavor that sets my recipe apart from all other iterations.

Steam the cauliflower florets until very tender (I’m talking almost-dissolve-at-your-touch tender…). Puree cauliflower in a food processor or high-speed blender until smooth, occasionally scraping down the sides. Add in coconut oil, nutritional yeast,
sea salt, pepper, and optional herbs. Continue pureeing until desired consistency is achieved (a couple minutes). Add any additional salt and pepper to taste. A food processor is probably the best option for this recipe, as most blenders will have trouble pureeing the cauliflower without additional water (not the end of the world – I sometimes add a couple tablespoons of water to assist in blending anyway – but you shouldn’t have to do so). If you have a high-speed blender such as a Vitamix, which I used for the batch pictured, it works great, and results in an almost unreal silky-smooth texture. I like it both ways, so experiment!

Post-pureeing, you can also pour the cauliflower  into a casserole dish and stick it in a 350° oven for 20 minutes, or until golden-brown on top. Not only does the cauliflower develop a nice, crispy top to play off the velvety texture, but it looks pretty to boot! If you’re not serving it immediately after preparing, you’re going to have to reheat it anyways, so what have you got to lose?

Copied directly from : http://prideandvegudice.com/2010/12/27/the-best-mashed-cauliflower/

No Butter Needed Corn on the Cob

This week has been my spring break. I finished a class and decided to take a week off from school. Somehow, the week has sped by and I did not get my blog out. If you recall, my New Years resolution was to write a weekly blog. I do not want to break my promise so I am writing my blog a few days late. Better late than never!

The days are longer and hotter and it’s time to break out the grill again. We love having friends over on a Saturday night to just hang and cook out. I am sending you this wonderful Corn on the Cob recipe to get the BBQ season started. We make this all summer long and our guests always ask for the recipe. I hope you enjoy it as much as we do!

No Butter Needed Corn on the Cob

1 tsb. Fresh lime
1 tsp. ground cumin
½ teasp. Sea salt
¼ tsp. ground black pepper
2 tsp. extra virgin olive oil
6 ears of corn, in husk (we take ours out because we like the corn blacker)
2 limes cut lengthwise

Heat the grill or preheat oven to 500 degrees
In small bowl, whisk together the lime juice, cumin, salt, pepper and oil
Prepare corn, one ear at a time. Pull off and discard outside leaves. Pull back remaining leaves, carefully until you see kernels. Pull off the silk and brush kernels with oil mixture.
Smooth leaves back in place, one by one until ear is covered. Arrange the corn on the grill or place them in the oven. Roast for 15 minutes. If you are using a grill turn the ears 2-3 times. Not necessary to do if roasting in the oven. Serve corn immediately, accompanies by lime wedges which you can squeeze on the corn for more flavor.
Taken from http://www.aicr.org/information/recipe

Roasted Chickpeas

My sister in law served these as a finger food appetizer. They are yummy! Easy and inexpensive.
1 14.5 oz can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1 teaspoon olive oil
¼ teaspoon salt
5 dashes cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon cumin

1) Preheat oven to 425°F.

2) Place chickpeas on baking/cookie sheet. Roast for 10 minutes. Shake the pan. (Do not spill on kitchen floor.) Roast another 10 minutes.

3) In a medium bowl, combine chickpeas, oil, salt, and spices. Stir well to combine.

4) Spread chickpeas back out on baking sheet. Roast between 5 and 15 more minutes, until they’re browned and super crunchy. Serve.

Approximate Calories, Fat, and Price Per Serving
135 calories, 4.3 g fat, $0.15

Calculations
1 14.5 oz can chickpeas: 500 calories, 4.8 g fat, $0.50
1 teaspoon olive oil: 39 calories, 4.5 g fat, $0.03
¼ – ½ teaspoon salt: negligible calories and fat, $0.01
5 dashes cayenne pepper: negligible calories and fat, $0.02
1 teaspoon cumin: negligible calories and fat, $0.02
TOTAL: 539 calories, 9.3 g fat, $0.58
PER SERVING: 135 calories, 4.3 g fat, $0.15

http://cheaphealthygood.blogspot.com/2008/04/roasted-chickpeas-wrong-way-right-way.html

A Really Yummy Gluten Free Muffin Recipe

A friend of mine recently shared a cookbook with me called The Paleo Comfort Foods Diet by Julie and Charles Mayfield. The cookbook is visually beautiful. Each recipe is accompanied by a short explanation of where it came from with tips and hints at the bottom of each page. The right hand side is a beautiful, full page picture of the recipe.

In case you’re not familiar with the Paleo Diet, it is a diet that believes that we should be eating what our ancestors were eating during the Paleolithic period. This was the era before agriculture when we were hunters and gatherers. Basically, people following this diet eat fruit, vegetables, nuts, seeds and animal proteins, specifically wild and grass fed. They do not eat dairy, grains or legumes, refined salt or oils. I know, it sounds rather limiting but this cookbook shows you how to eat this way in a delicious, colorful way. You would be amazed at how well you can eat by eating these foods.

I will admit many of the recipes are lengthy. My husband joked that some of them seemed to be geared to keep him in the kitchen for a while! However, what we have found is that they are well worth the effort. Each one we’ve made has been delicious and there is usually a significant amount left over which means easy lunches for the next few days and less time in the kitchen over all!

I am sharing one of the muffin recipes with you. I have been gluten free for many years and have tried many recipes and commercial products and these are by far the best. They make for a hearty snack or a great addition to my morning egg for breakfast. I encourage you to step out of your comfort zone and try these recipes; they are not difficult and well worth the effort to have homemade muffins. The first batch of Morning Glory muffins disappeared hot out of the oven between me, my husband and my son! And the house smelled heavenly!

I hope you enjoy them as much as I do and I strongly recommend you checking out The Mayfield’s Cookbook. http://paleocomfortfoods.com/

If you would like some help in implementing a new way of eating, Paleo or Mediterranean or just doing something different, please contact me at Vicki@yourhealthystructure.com for a free 30 minute consult. I am happy to work face to face, on the phone or by skype.

I’d also like to announce that I have just joined The Parkaire Consultant Group. We are a therapy group that specializes in ADD, ADHD, OCD, Tourette’s, Bi-polar and more. I will be there 1-2 days a week. Check us out at our website: http://parkaireconsultants.com/

I will also continue my private practice and working at Talbott Recovery Campus once a week.

Morning Glory Muffins
These are gluten free, delicious with a touch of sweetness and very filling. Makes a great snack or addition to an egg for breakfast.

2 ½ cups almond flour
1 tbl. Cinnamon
1/2 teasp. salt
2 teaspoons baking soda
2 cups carrots, grated
1 large apple, peeled, cored and grated
1 cup shredded coconut
1 cup raisins
3 large eggs
2 tablespoons honey (optional)
½ cup coconut or avocado oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1. Preheat oven to 350 and grease a standard size muffin pan (12 cups)
2. Combine almond flour, cinnamon, baking soda, and salt in large bowl. Add carrot, apple, coconut and raisins and combine well.
3. In separate bowl, whisk eggs, honey, oil and vanilla extract together.
4. Pour this mixture over your dry ingredients and mix well. This batter will be thick.
5. Sppon out into muffin pan and place on middle or upper rack for 40-50 minutes for large muffins or 20-30 for smaller ones.
6. When toothpick comes out clean, they are done.
7. Cool muffins 8-10 minutes and remove from rack to finish cooling.

Variations: Add in teasp. of orange zest. Replace raisins with cup of chopped dates. You can also make a loaf with this batter. Either one large or two smaller ones. Bake 45-60 minutes.

Tips: The smaller you can grate the apple/carrot the better. Muffins are moister if you can let the batter sit for 30-60 minutes before spooning into muffin pan.

***I have saved some money by using an electric coffee bean grinder to grind blanched almonds. Takes a little more time but it is 50% less expensive than buying the almond flour ground and packaged. I use my Cuisinart for grinding the apple and carrots and that works great. I’ve made this recipe twice now and both have yielded 18 muffins-Vicki

By Julie and Charles Mayfield
From the Gluten Free Paleo Comfort Food Cookbook

Gluten Free Raw Cookie Dough Bites

Gluten Free Raw Frozen Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Bites

These tasty little guys are a bit time consuming to make.  If you have a quiet afternoon, they are fun to do but they are a bit labor intensive and the ingredients can be a bit pricey.  However, don’t let that scare you.  These are one of the best raw desserts I’ve ever made!   They are rich and decadent but you are still eating foods that are good for you!  Nuts, coconut oil, honey, YUM!  You can cut them into bite size pieces and this batch will last quite some time (if you can control yourself)!

Chocolate chips

2 tbl. Coconut oil

½ cup carob powder

½ cup raw cocoa powder

4 tbl. Agave nectar (I used honey throughout this recipe)

1 teasp. Vanilla

Dough

1 ¾ cups cashews, ground into a nut flour (I used our
electric coffee grinder)

¾ cup oat flour (I used coconut flour for a gluten free
version)

2 tbl. Agave or honey

2 tbl. Maple syrup

¼ cup coconut oil

Pinch of sea salt

Chocolate coating

(I actually had to double this to do the double dipping.  Keeping it warm also helped.  I had the bowl sitting in another bowl with hot water)

¼ cup coconut oil

¼ cup raw cocoa

2 tabl. Agave or honey

1 tsp. vanilla

Directions:
1. Prepare raw chocolate chips by combining above chocolate chip ingredients.  They will be doughy.  Spread out on a flat pan or
plate and put in freezer for at least an hour. (Don’t make the mistake I did and use wax paper, it sticks!).  Then, cut into small chips. These soften quickly and are easier to handle when cold.

2. Next, prepare the cookie dough filling by combining cookie dough ingredients, mixing chocolate chips in.  Form into a slab about 1/2 “ thick and freeze for 15 minutes.

3. Once frozen, cut into small bar sizes (enough to take 1-3 bites out of) and skewer each one with a small toothpick.  Prepare chocolate coating by combining all coating ingredients in a small bowl.

4. One by one, dip each bite into chocolate, place on a flat tray and freeze for 1-2 minutes. Dip again in chocolate and top with chopped cashews, coconut flakes, cocoa nips or other desired toppings. Freeze until frozen.  I would
suggest taking out the toothpicks while still a bit soft after dipping before last freeze.

These should keep in the freezer for some time.

Makes 24 bites or more.  Preparation time: 1 hour.

This recipe was sent to me.   It says VegWeb.com submitted by http://vegweb.com/index.php?action=profile;u=152555.  However, they give credit to Oh She Glows.com. (http://ohsheglows.com/2009/05/03/raw-chocolate-chip=-cookies/)

 

Lentil Soup Recipe

Lentil Soup Recipe
This is an easy, deeply satisfying soup, especially on a cloudy, cold day.   Smells amazing while cooking too!

 

1 onion chopped

1 tabl.  olive oil

2 carrots, diced

2 stalks of celery, chopped

2 cloves of garlic, minced (I used more)

1 teasp. Dried oregano

1 tsp. dried basil

1 bay leaf

1 (14.5 oz) can of organic diced tomatoes

2 cups dried lentils

8 cups of broth or water

½ cup spinach or kale, rinsed and thinly sliced

2 tbl. Vinegar

Sea salt and ground black pepper to taste

In a large soup pot, heat oil over medium heat.  Add onions, carrots, and celery;  cook until onion is tender.  Stir in garlic, bay leaf, oregano, basil, ook for 2 minutes.

Stir in lentils, add liquid and tomatoes.  Bring to a boil.  Reduce heat, simmer for at least 1 hour.  When ready to serve, stir in the greens and cook until they wilt. Stir in vinegar and season to taste with salt, pepper and ore vinegar if desired.

Taken from http://allrecipes.com/recipe/lentil-soup/

Gluten Free Coconut Muffins

Coconut Muffins Gluten free
–from reubencarolyn@gmail.com

www.allianceforaddictionsolutions.org

3 organic eggs

3 tbl. Melted butter

2 tbsp. coconut milk

3 tbs. raw coconut crystals (I found this at Whole Foods.  Your health food store may have it too)

¼ tsp. unrefined salt (I use Celtic sea salt)

¼ teasp. Organic vanilla extract

¼ cup sifted coconut flour

¼ tsp aluminum free baking powder

Preheat oven to 400 degrees

Blend together eggs, melted butter, coconut milk, coconut
crystals, salt and vanilla.  Sift coconut flour together with the baking powder into the mixture.  Stir until there are no lumps. Spoon batter into muffin tin.  I find these stick, even if you use coconut oil in the tin, so lining with paper is a good option.  Otherwise, I just scrape out what’s left and eat the crumbs!

Bake 12-15 minutes until toothpick comes out clean.

Makes 6 delicious low glycemic, gluten free muffins!

100 calories, 7 grams of carbs, 3 grams of fiber

Carrot-Ginger Soup With Cashew Cream

3 pounds carrots washed and cut into 1 inch pieces

8 cups of cold water or vegetable broth

1 teasp. sea salt

2 tbl. olive oil

2 c. chopped onions

2 teasp. grated ginger

1/4 teasp. curry powder

1/8 teasp. cumin

1/8 teasp. cinnamon

1/8 teasp. ground allspice

1/8 teap. ground coriander

1 small pinch of red pepper flakes

1/8 teasp. maple syrup (optional)

Cashew cream

1 cup raw cashews

1 cup water

2 teasp. fresh lemon juice

1/4 teasp. sea salt

Pinch of freshly grated nutmeg

In a 6-8 quart pot, heat the olive oil over medium heat, combine the carrots and the water.  cover and bring to a boil over medium high heat.  Add the onions with a pinch of salt and sautee until golden.  Add the carrots, ginger, curry, cumin, cinnamon, allspice, coriander and red pepper flakes and stir to combine.  Deglaze the pan with 1 cup of water or brtoh adn then add the remaining 7 cups of liquid with 1 teasp. of salt.  Cook until the carrots are tender, about 20 minutes.

In a blender,puree the soup in batches. Blend until smooth.  Add additional liquid to reach the desired thickness.  Return to the pot and add the maple syrup and reheat slowly. 

To make the cashew cream, grind the cashews in a mini food processor or nut grinder. If you have a vitamix you can skip this step.  Put the water in a blender.  Add the ground cashews, lemon juice, salt and nutmeg. Blend until very smooth. to serve ladle the soup into bowls and drizzle the cream on top.

Serves 8-10

Remember to put a towel on top of the blender lid before you turn it on.  Do not fill the blender more than 2/3 full!

Carrot-Ginger Soup with Cashew Cream from Rebecca Katz, Recipe from One Bit at a Time

I was given this soup through my school.  I have made it countless times. The blend of flavors are wonderful and it is a beautiful bright orange.  The cashew cream is a must!