May 7, 2012

Veggie Loaded Baked Sweet Potatoes

Sorry...this one isn't an exact recipe.

Sweet potatoes
Zucchini, cut into chunks
Yellow Squash (optional), cut into chunks
Carrots, cut into chunks
Red Onion, cut into chunks
Minced Garlic (or Garlic Powder)
Butter or Oil
Shredded Cheese

Bake sweet potatoes. (Try a method similar to this...minus the seasonings.)

Saute garlic (if using minced) in a bit of oil until it gets a bit tender.
Add carrots and onion.Saute until carrots are softening and onion is almost cooked. Add zucchini and squash and saute.

Serve sauteed veggies over baked sweet potato and top with shredded cheese.

May 4, 2012

Refried Beans in a Crock Pot

I have a 6 quart (oval) Crock Pot. I am not sure how to make them in another size Crock if you have something smaller (or bigger) you may need to do some adjusting.

3 bags/boxes (16 oz. each) refried beans - I use 2 pinto and 1 black, but you can use any combination you want as long as it comes out to the same total amount
1-2 sticks butter, unsalted
4 tbsp (1/4 cup) ground cumin - I buy it at Trader Joe's or Cost Plus/World Market...they have the best prices I've found on bottled spices. If I don't feel like measuring I use an entire bottle of ground cumin from one of those's just a bit more than 1/4 cup
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp salt (or more - to taste)
4 tbsp (1/4 cup) parmesan cheese
2 tbsp lime juice

Add rinsed, dried beans to Crock Pot.
Add water to approximately 1" below the Crock Pot line (Crock Pot line = where the lid rests).
Cook on high for 5-6 hours, until they are as tender as canned beans.

{If you want a canned bean substitute, just bag and freeze the beans at this point. You can freeze them in their liquid or just as drained beans. Thaw in the fridge before use.}

Add 2 sticks of butter. (You can use only 1 stick if you like...but the more butter, the better, in my opinion!)

After the beans are cooked you may need to remove some liquid. Since I use an immersion blender the beans get thicker easier than hand mashing, so I keep all the water. I am not sure how it would go with hand may want to remove and reserve a lot of liquid and add some back as you need it.
Stir in spices (cumin, salt, parmesan cheese, and lime juice).


{You can easily freeze any refried beans that you'd like to save for later.}

April 11, 2012

Kale Salad with Honey Mustard Dressing

Honey Mustard Dressing:
1/2 c. Grapeseed Oil (or other oil)
1/4 c. Lemon Juice
1/3 c. Honey
1 tbsp. Mustard

{Makes approx. 10 oz.}

Kale Salad:
10 oz. Kale (large stems removed), chopped into small (bite-size) pieces
8 oz. Organic Dried Cranberries, chopped
1/2 c. - 1 c. toasted pine nuts
1/2 small red onion, chopped very small or minced
2 small green apples, chopped small
3 oz. Honey Mustard Dressing (recipe above)
Pepper to taste

Toss all ingredients together and enjoy. We eat this as a dinner is surprisingly filling. It would be great with some yummy bread, too.

In the salad in the image above I also threw in some chopped raw spinach, diced strawberries, a tiny bit of left over cilantro (chopped), some raw almond slices...and I don't know what else.
It was still yummy. :o)

August 28, 2010

Help with Celiac Disease

I was recently contacted by a reader who has Celiac Disease and wanted to share her story and a great resource for thos who suffer from Celiac Disease:

" I was looking at your Apple A Day website, and I thought this might be a useful addition to your celiac posts.

For the past nine years I’ve been suffering from celiac disease, and even now, I still fight the physical side effects of my food allergies. As of two weeks ago, I learned that: 1) An ambulance ride is not as glamorous or exciting as one might think. 2) Apparently celiac disease knows no boundaries, as I was “saved” by a gluten/dairy-free firefighter, who happens to be from Australia.

I know, right? What are the odds…the joyous, joyous odds…

The reason I’m going into such a lengthy account of my background is because I know first-hand how difficult it can be to accept this sort of lifestyle, and how physically detrimental this condition can be if you don’t adhere to the diet.

To help myself, and other people who are no longer able to eat gluten, I created a resource article that features a list of the best gluten-free restaurants/bakeries, cookbooks, products/brands, support groups, and informational websites that I’ve come across.

I wanted to let you know about this article in case it would be useful to you, or the people who visit your site. (I trust that I can rely on you to bring joy to those who are wallowing in a world of rice cakes a jus…). "

Thank you, Lindsay, for the information!

April 27, 2009

Do You Scream for Vegan Ice Cream?

A new vegan ice cream cookbook out from Cathe Olson. Check it out!

Also from Cathe:


You can get them all on

March 11, 2009

Why Organic? Beware of the "Dirty Dozen"

I don't normally buy everything organic, but I do when I can. There was an article in the most recent edition of Energy Times that told about the "Dirty Dozen" of produce...the fruits and veggies that should be bought organic because of how many pesticides remain on them when not grown organically. You can read the article here.

You can get information on the pesticide residues on other foods here. (Click here for a printable shopper's guide.)

If you care to get a free online subscription to Energy Times, you can do so here.

March 6, 2009

Sweet Potato and Black Bean Enchiladas

Sweet Potato and Black Bean Enchiladas

Grapeseed oil
2-3 teaspoons dried minced onion
4 teaspoons dried minced garlic
2 cans (15 oz. each) black beans
2 cans (15 oz. each) sweet potato puree
1 cup water
2 tablespoons cumin
2 tablespoons taco seasoning (or chili powder for a bit more spice)
Chopped cilantro
Shredded cheese
10 whole wheat tortillas

1. Put dried minced onion and dried minced garlic in a small amount of water until "puffy". (Or you can skip this step and use a fresh onion, diced, and 3-4 cloves of fresh garlic, minced.)
2. Heat oil in a skillet over medium/high heat.
3. Cook onion and garlic until fragrant.
4. Add black beans, water, cumin, and taco seasoning to skillet.
5. Cook, stirring often, until most of the water has evaporated and the spices have made a paste/sauce.
6. Put some bean mixture and sweet potato puree in each tortilla. Add a pinch of chopped cilantro and a pinch of shredded cheese.
7. Roll each enchilada and line them up in a slightly oiled baking pan/casserole dish.
8. Top the rolled enchiladas with shredded cheese and chopped cilantro (and any left over sweet potato puree or bean mixture you may have).
9. Bake in a 350 degree oven (preheated) until enchiladas are heated through and cheese is melted. Tortillas may be a bit brown and crispy.
10. Top with sour cream and guacamole, if desired. (I make a simple guacamole with mashed avocados, salt, garlic powder, lemon juice, and lime juice.)

Yummy and inflammation free!!!

March 2, 2009

Food allergies

In reading many things about autoimmune disorders and anti-inflammatory diets, it seems that it all boils down to what foods in particular you may be allergic to that can set off your symptoms. I recently had a blood test to determine what foods I may be allergic to (I am hoping this will be a quick route to the things that can be discovered through something like an elimination diet), and I wanted to share some information I found about how they do allergy testing via blood. You can read up on it at

March 1, 2009

What's a gluten?

I've been hearing a lot about Celiac Disease and gluten-free diets. I know that gluten is found in wheat, but wasn't sure what else contained I thought I'd look it up. Gluten-free and wheat-free are not the same thing. A gluten-free diet excludes more than wheat...and actually some gluten-free products may not be wheat-free. Here are some foods that contain gluten and should be excluded from your diet if you are told to eat "gluten-free" (unless of course they are prepared and labeled as "gluten-free"):

Baked goods
Baking mixes

In addition to that, there are some lesser known ingredients that may contain gluten:

Autolyzed wheat protein
Brewer’s yeast
Dextrimaltose or maltodextrin
Textured vegetable protein
Vegetable starch or meal

Look out for some of these foods that may contain those ingredients:

Malt vinegar
Malted cereal or farina cereal
Baked beans
Salad dressing
Stock cubes or bouillon
Cold cuts

(Information in this post was taken from WiseGeek and other websites.)

February 28, 2009


I had some of the ingredients on hand for stroganoff (and they needed using before they went bad), but wanted to make a dairy-free version. (And from my limited knowledge of glutens, I believe this can also be gluten-free if you just substitute a gluten-free flour for the one I used.) Of course it is not as creamy as regular stroganoff that uses sour cream and milk, but I really liked how it turned out.
Here is the recipe:


Grapeseed oil
1 pound ground turkey (I like the kosher kind from Trader Joe's)
1 teaspoon dried minced garlic
2 teaspoons dried minced onion
1-2 cups chopped mushrooms (I chop the mushrooms because my kids don't care for them and this keeps them at a similar size as the cooked ground turkey)
3 cups rice milk, almond milk, or a combination of the two (I used a combination)
8 tablespoons whole wheat flour (toasted*, if desired)
3 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
1 pound Brown Rice Pasta Fusilli (from Trader Joe's), cooked and drained

1. Place dried minced garlic and dried minced onion in a small amount of water until it plumps up. (You can substitute with 1-2 cloves minced garlic and about 1/2 of an onion, chopped.)
2. Heat a skilllet and brown the ground turkey with the garlic, and onion. I cook in a cast iron skillet and use a very lean turkey, so I added some Grapeseed oil to my skillet to keep it from sticking.
3. When the turkey is almost browned, add the chopped mushrooms.
4. When the turkey is fully cooked, add the rice/almond milk to the pan, stirring occasionally.
5. When the "milk" is warmed, whisk in the flour. Stir often until sauce is thickened.
6. Add Worcestershire sauce and stir.
7. Add cooked pasta and stir to combine. Serve warm.

*To toast the flour, place it in a dry skillet and heat until it is slightly darker than normal. This just intensifies the flavor a bit.