Monday, December 30, 2013



1/2 c. extra virgin olive oil (EVOO) or butter
2 medium eggplants, cut into 1 in cubes
2-3 medium zucchini, sliced
1 medium onion, sliced
1 red bell pepper, sliced
3 medium tomatoes, cut into 1 in cubes
1/2 tsp thyme
8 oz goat cheese
Salt & pepper

1. Heat 2 Tbsp of the EVOO or butter in very large skillet or dutch oven on medium heat.  Add in cubed eggplant and cook, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes.

2. Add in 2 more Tbsp of oil or butter and add in sliced zucchini, onion, red pepper, and salt and pepper.  Continue to cook, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are softened, about 5 more minutes.

3. Finally, add in cubed tomatoes and thyme and cook another 5 minutes, until tender.  Simmer mixture another few minutes, until all the liquid has been absorbed. 

4. Serve the Ratatouille with crumbled goat cheese in a bowl and some crusty bread or folded-up in a warmed wrap.

5. Enjoy!!

Sunday, December 29, 2013

GF Chocolate Freezer Tart

I served this chocolate tart for two of my Christmas parties this year.  It is very decadent and sweet, but something you don't have to feel guilty about indulging in! This can be served as-is or with some fresh berries on top or homemade whipped cream.  This recipe was adapted from Real Food Forager.

GF Chocolate Freezer Tart

2 c. almond flour
1/4 c. cocoa powder
1/2 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla extract
3 Tbsp raw honey (preferably local)
4 Tbsp butter, room temperature
Coconut oil, for greasing

2 ripe avocadoes
3 Tbsp raw honey (preferably local)
1/4 tsp stevia
1 large ripe banana
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 c. cocoa powder

1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees.

2. Mix together dry ingredients for the crust in a food processor: almond flour, cocoa powder, sea salt, and baking soda.

3. Add egg, vanilla, and honey to food processor and mix until well combined.

4. Cut butter into small chunks and add slowly into food processor.  Mix until butter is well incorporated.

5. Grease a tart or pie pan liberally with coconut oil.  Cut a piece of parchment paper to fit in the bottom of the tart pan and grease on top of the parchment paper as well.

6. Press batter into the tart pan, spreading evenly and up the sides.  When it is well spread, poke a fork every few inches all over the bottom and up the sides of the tart pan.  Bake the crust for 12-16 minutes at 325 degrees, or until lightly browned.

7. Allow crust to cool completely.  If using a tart pan with a removable bottom, carefully remove the tart onto a serving plate.  Place in the freezer for at least an hour.

8. Prepare filling by mixing together avocadoes, honey, stevia, banana, and vanilla in a food processor.  Add in cocoa and finishing mixing, until well combined.


9. Spread filling evenly in the tart.  Place back in the freezer for at least 4 hours to set well. Cut, serve, and enjoy!

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Elderberry Syrup

During cold and flu season, we take this daily to protect ourselves from the cold and flu viruses going around.  It is super easy to make and will keep in the refrigerator for quite some time.  If you do get the flu, take a dose of elderberry syrup every three hours until symptoms subside.  I have used it and it really works!  We buy our elderberries from Mountain Rose Herbs (they also have some tasty teas!).  This recipe was adapted from the Wellness Mama and Elliott Homestead. Also, make sure to use some local honey, usually you can find some at the grocery stores or health food stores in town.  This is important for the cold aspect of the cold and flu prevention. Merry Christmas and be well!

Elderberry Syrup
(makes about 1 1/2 quarts)

2 c. dehydrated elderberries (see above for where we buy ours from)
8 c. filtered water
2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp whole cloves
2 Tbsp fresh ground ginger
1 c. raw local honey


1. Using a large saucepan, mix together water, cinnamon, cloves, ginger, and berries.  Bring the mixture to a boil. Once it begins boiling, put a lid on the saucepan and drop the heat down to low so it is barely simmering. 

2. Simmer the mixture for 45 minutes, stirring occasionally.

3. Allow to cool to room temperature.  Using a fine strainer, strain out the liquid and squeeze any remaining juice out of the elderberries.  Discard the elderberries.

4. Then, stir in the honey and store in a mason jar in the refrigerator.  I recommend adults taking about 1 Tbsp per day.  Kids can also take it, a smaller dose of about 2 tsp per day.

Stay well this holiday season!

Hamburger Casserole

This recipe came from my mom, it is loaded with veggies and is a very comforting meal. This recipe is another easy casserole that takes about 10 minutes to assemble and then goes straight in the oven. It takes about 2 hours to cook, so keep that in mind. Hope you try it soon!

Hamburger Casserole

1 - 11/2 lbs grass-fed beef
2 lbs red or white potatoes
1 can or 12 oz frozen peas
1 large onion
3 large carrots
3 stalks of celery 
2 cans or 1/2 box low sodium, organic tomato soup
1/2 c. Water or pea juice (if using canned peas)
Sea alt & Pepper, to taste 

1. Brown the beef in a medium skillet over medium heat, breaking up into small pieces until browned throughout.

2. While beef cooks, chop up potatoes in 1-2" pieces, peel and chop carrots, chop celery, and chop onion. 

3. Layer casserole in the following order:

Salt & pepper
Salt & pepper
Salt & pepper
Mix together soup and water (or pea juice) and pour over top
More salt & pepper, if desired

4. Cook at 350 degrees for 1 hour with foil covering and then another hour without the foil.
5. Enjoy!