Snacks

Curried Socca

This curried socca is a terrific side dish or appetizer! I really enjoy having an option that is just as satisfying as bread but much healthier. I love to serve this along with my peach chutney or, you guessed it, my salsa verde. Both options are delicious! If I make the salsa verde, I actually make it a little more “mint heavy” as mint and curry are long-time good friends. I found this recipe in one of my absolute favorite cookbooks, “At Home in the Wholefood Kitchen” by Amy Chaplin. I love this cookbook and keep coming back to it for guidance and inspiration in my day to day cooking. This Socca is delicious and naturally gluten-free, it won’t cause the bloating that so many of us experience after eating glutinous products. Hope you enjoy making it and pairing with tons of yummy foods like grilled meats and veggies. This recipe makes about 6, 9-inch socca. Enjoy! Ingredients: 3 cups chickpea flour 2 ¼ teaspoons sea salt 3 cups warm filtered water, divided 2 tablespoons melted extra virgin coconut oil 2 tablespoons ghee, plus more for cooking socca 2 teaspoons black mustard seeds 5 teaspoons homemade curry powder (or high-quality organic store-bought) 2 onions finely sliced Directions: 1. Mix the chickpea flour and salt in a bowl and whisk to combine well. 2. Pour in 1 ½ cups warm water and whisk until completely smooth, then add the remaining water and coconut oil; whisk again and set aside. 3. Warm 2 tablespoons of ghee […]

Poppyseed Yogurt Breakfast Bread with a Lemon Drizzle

What is not to love about lemon and poppyseed?  One of my very favorite quick breads comes from and 80’s recipe that limited the fats but elevated the sugar.  This bread is made with far less sugar (and a natural sugar source), healthy fats and to top it off is made with whole grain.  I used a Monkfruit powdered sugar for the lemon glaze which keeps the sugar load even lower.  It has been a big hit over here in the Gleeson household.  Hope you enjoy it as much as we do!! Ingredients: 1 cup coconut sugar 2 medium lemons, zest and juice ½ cup whole milk plain yogurt 3 large eggs, at room temperature ½ tsp vanilla extract 1 ½ cup sprouted spelt flour ½ tsp salt 2 tsp baking powder ½ cup avocado oil 2 TBS. poppyseed 1/2 cup Lankanto monk fruit powdered sugar   Directions: 1.Pre-heat your oven to 350F  with a rack in the middle. 2. Grease a loaf pan with butter or coconut oil spray and line it with a strip of parchment paper.   3. In a medium mixing bowl, combine the sugar with the zest of the two lemons (reserve the lemon juice for the glaze). 4. Add in the yogurt, eggs and vanilla extract. Mix to combine.  5. In a large mixing bowl, combine spelt flour, poppyseed, salt and baking powder. Combine into the wet ingredients until just incorporated. Finally add in oil until just incorporated. The batter should look smooth and glossy. 6. […]

Freezing and Storing Summer Produce

I just love the flavors of summer produce: tomatoes, basil, bell peppers, hot peppers, cucumber, blackberries, blueberries, peaches and so many more! When I am in the middle of winter I find that I crave those fresh sunny fruits and vegetables and have found a way to have those year round. I buy up as much as I can afford each week and freeze them. It’s way more fresh and cost-effective than buying frozen veggies and fruit at the grocery store. It’s best to buy fruits and vegetables in the summer as they are always less expensive in season. Also, when you freeze them yourself you know exactly where they came from and that nothing was added in the freezing process. As summer sets in, remember that colder weather will come and you will long for these delicious foods. So buy a little extra each week, you’ll be surprised how much it adds up and you can stash away for the winter. Here is my method: Berries: Put berries on a parchment paper lined cookie sheet, make sure they are not touching and freeze. Note: I first freeze them on a cookie sheet to make sure they don’t clump together. Much easier for grabbing just a handful for smoothies etc. Then date, label and move to a quart size bag. I keep adding to the bag each week until full and freeze as many bags as I can over the summer. Use in desserts and smoothies. Peaches: Peel and slice. Place single layer on […]

Homemade Yogurt

I love making yogurt at home! Buying high-quality yogurt at the grocery store is expensive and its much more cost effective to make it myself. Plus yogurt at the store is more processed, they have to in order to make it stable for transportation and to sit on the shelves for a little while. As many of you know, I really enjoy the simplicity of making these things on my own but I encourage my friends and clients to start where you can and work from there. You’ll be surprised, like I was, that many things you buy are easier to make than you think! I invested in a yogurt maker for $35 and it has been worth every penny! I also know that the Instant Pot, which is all the rage right now, can do this function as well.  Yogurt is easier on the digestive system than other forms of dairy as it contains lactobacillus acidophilus which helps replenish healthy gut flora. Having healthy gut means you have a healthy immune system that can fight off invaders like bad bacteria. The process of making yogurt also naturally breaks down lactose and pre-digests casein, which can cause gut disturbances. If you are allergic to milk, give homemade yogurt a try as its all around much easier to digest. Many people who are lactose intolerant have no trouble with homemade yogurt. I love to have this for breakfast topped with in-season fruit, nuts and my granola. Yummm.  Here’s what you’ll need:  A half gallon of raw whole […]

Rich and Creamy Ricotta

This recipe comes from Smitten Kitchen and I find it is my favorite recipe for ricotta cheese. It is so easy to make and because I use raw milk the flavor is unbelievable. If you can get raw milk I highly recommend it. Raw milk has all the enzymes and healthy fats that normally get taken out in the pasteurization process. They help your body digest the milk cultures and usually won’t cause tummy trouble, even for the lactose intolerant. I’m a big believer in raw milk mostly because it makes this ricotta so ridiculously good! There are so many yummy ways to eat it, we have it as a topping for crostini, with lemon zest, rosemary and honey, dolloped on a pizza or pasta and sometimes just as a topping with jam on your morning toast. There will be more recipes to follow using this delicious cheese. It’s one of those recipes that I think about and crave and get so happy when I can make it! This recipe makes about 1 cup of ricotta. Ingredients: 3 cups raw whole milk, or organic whole milk 1 cup organic heavy cream ½ teaspoon coarse sea salt 3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice Directions: 1. Pour the milk, cream and salt into a 3-quart nonreactive saucepan. Attach a candy or deep-fry thermometer. 2. Heat the milk to 190°F, stirring it occasionally to keep it from scorching on the bottom. 3. Remove from heat and add the lemon juice, then stir it once […]

Ricotta, Honey, Lemon and Herb Crostini

This crostini recipe is terrific for entertaining. Combine my homemade ricotta, some honey, lemon and thyme on a toasted baguette and you will go to heaven it’s so good. We love serving this to friends when they come over. Its refreshing and decadent tasting all at the same time. The ricotta is so creamy it does really well with the honey and lemon zest to cut through it. I also love to add thyme, but you could do rosemary or even mint if you wanted to. A little note on the bread. I don’t eat white flour often at all but when I do I make sure to either buy high-quality fresh baked bread or I make it myself at home. If you are absolutely grain free, this ricotta would taste delicious on pears, apples or strawberries as well. Enjoy this recipe, there are so many ways to build a delicious little appetizer when you have fresh, wholesome ingredients. Have fun mixing it up! I can almost guarantee that this ricotta will make an appearance in other recipes later on.  Here is a quick little guide for assembling these crostini that are bound to impress. Ingredients: Thinly sliced baguette, or homemade bread Homemade ricotta cheese Olive oil (I use olive oil taproom) Fresh garlic clove, peeled Zest of one lemon Raw honey Fresh thyme or rosemary, finely chopped 1. Slice the baguette and place on an oven proof tray and drizzle with the olive oil. Bake at 350 until the bread […]

Charcuterie Plate

Everyone needs to have a recipe in their back pocket that is elegant and beautiful when entertaining. In my case, I prefer something like this charcuterie plate. It’s not really a “recipe”, in the strictest sense of the word, but I don’t really enjoy constraints in case you haven’t noticed. So allow me to share my guide to building this gorgeous platter. It features my homemade pimento cheese as well as the ricotta crostini I shared this week. There are times when I enjoy making something visually beautiful to eat, it stimulates my creative side and brings me happiness in a way that simply filling my belly cannot. I try and make my charcuterie platter with plenty of bright, beautiful veggies and serve some seed or whole grain crackers instead of only white. I find the options are endless and the flavor combinations much more interesting to my taste buds when I add fresh elements to a charcuterie plate. I love the bright colors of cucumbers, tomatoes and cherries and sprigs of herbs; all fantastic options for the conscientious eater. My guests love it because it looks and tastes amazing and I can rest easy and enjoy myself knowing that I have many wholesome options before me. Sometimes the extra effort it takes to make something beautiful is just as enjoyable as actually eating the food. You are in charge of what you put in your body and can have fun entertaining without getting off track! Below are the different […]

Sourdough Bread

I enjoy making homemade bread from time to time. It’s not something I do every week but I probably make it about once a month. I’ve been tweaking this sourdough bread recipe for many years. Sourdough bread is fairly simple once you get the hang of it. A little note, you will need a sourdough bread starter, which I also have a recipe for and will post later this week. The starter recipe is not complicated but makes more sense if you already have a bread recipe to refer back to. I like sourdough bread because it’s much easier to digest than other forms of homemade bread. Sourdough has higher quantities of lactobacillus than other bread, which, you may remember, is the same type of probiotic found in yogurt. This is in the raw dough and doesn’t actually make it through the baking process, however, it does leave behind lactic acid. Lactic acid helps balance out phytic acid, which is found in lots of bread and inhibits the absorption of other nutrients. The lactic acid helps to make sure that the phytic acid is in balance and your body can digest the bread more effectively. Another note on lactic acid, it makes this bread naturally lower on the glycemic index. Overall, if you feel bloated after eating bread, then you may feel much better with a little homemade sourdough. I also like to add flax seed to this recipe. You all know how I feel about flax! Its such a […]

Easy Tomato and Red Chili Salsa

At home, I refer to this recipe as “my easy salsa” because it really is so simple to make. It’s my favorite go-to salsa since it only takes a few minutes and uses all fresh ingredients which make the flavor out of this world. I am giving you many variations here and all of them are great! Making your own salsa is so much better to me than store-bought, you can skip out on all the preservatives and add flavor. I’ll take that! This recipe can be made with fresh or canned tomatoes and any type of hot pepper or chili you prefer. Also, I use up my cilantro stems in this recipe so that I am not wasting any part of cilantro. The stems actually have more flavor than the leaves so this is a great way to use them up since you are going to be pureeing all the vegetables together. Ingredients: 3 large tomatoes or 5 plum tomatoes or a full pint of cherry tomatoes (if it is winter and you don’t have fresh tomatoes you can use a 28 ounce can of San Marzano tomatoes) 2 cloves of garlic ½ tsp. of dried chili de arbol (or any other dried chilis you like) or 1 whole jalapeno or habanero. ¼ cup cilantro stems (or leaves if you prefer) ½ tsp. Sea salt Directions: Put all the ingredients in your blender (I use a Vitamix) and depending on the consistency that you want you can either pulse […]

Homemade Greek Yogurt

I wanted to do this as a separate post especially because this is such a popular style of yogurt!  I love the flavor of my homemade so much better than the store bought and besides, it is remarkably cheaper. First of all, if you haven’t read the post on homemade yogurt, that is the perfect place to start. Greek yogurt is a secondary process once you have made a batch of your own regular yogurt. This process produces a thicker, creamier yogurt which I personally use to replace sour cream or cream cheese.  The longer you allow it to strain, the thicker it will be. Directions: 1. Set a strainer over a bowl lined with a coffee filter or cheesecloth or a greek yogurt strainer.  They carry this brand at Kitchen and Company and can also be used to make yogurt cheese. 2.  Empty your homemade yogurt into the strainer and cover 3. Let sit until it is as thick as you want it. I usually let mine sit in the refrigerator for at least 24 hours.  It comes out thick and creamy.  4. What you will have left in the bottom is the whey. When strained, it will keep indefinitely in the refrigerator and can be added to your smoothies, used to make sauerkraut and sourdough bread. Eat up and enjoy your greek yogurt! I use it as a sour cream replacement and also on its own as a filling breakfast or snack. I top with my homemade granola, fresh fruit and raw honey!    Enjoy!!         […]