Cauliflower Schwarmas

A little middle eastern delight for your lunch or dinner.  Gobbled (and seconds requested) even by my (getting pickier) six year old.

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  • One large head cauliflower, chopped into bite size pieces
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp ground cumin
  • 2 tsp ground coriander
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ground cardamom
  • 1/4 tsp ground cloves
  • 1/8 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1/8 tsp ground allspice
  • 2 tsp granulated garlic
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne (or as you wish depending on desired heat level)
  • ground black pepper (about 1/2 tsp)
  • optional: 1 Tbsp oil

Fixins:

  • pitas
  • hummus
  • chopped cucumber
  • chopped tomato
  • lemon tahini sauce (I used the second version tonight – either is fine)

In a large saute pan, add cauliflower, water and salt.  Cook on medium, covered, for about 10 – 15 minutes or until tender, stirring occasionally.  Add all spices (and optional oil) and cook 2 minutes more.

Recommended assembly.  Take whole pita, slather with hummus, add cauliflower, top with cucumber, tomato and a drizzle of lemon tahini sauce.  Fold and enjoy!

Tweaked a tad from this recipe.

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Goatless Goat Cheese

This “cheese” makes a great cracker spread or is fantastic in a salad.

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  • 1/2 cup raw cashews, preferably soaked in warm water an hour or 2 in advance, then drained
  • 1 – 2 Tbsp lemon juice (juice of 1/2 lemon)
  • 1 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1 Tbsp coconut oil
  • pinch of salt
  • water, as needed (about 1/4 cup)

In a blender (high speed blender like a Vitamix would be best), combine all ingredients, added as little water as possible and blending until smooth.  (Let the blender run a couple of minutes to get it as smooth as possible.)

Place a standard coffee filter in a colander and place on a plate.  Pour the cashew blend into the coffee filter and place in the fridge.  Allow to chill and drain any additional water.  (The less water you have to add, the less that needs to drain.)  Once the consistency of a soft cheese, transfer to a container in the fridge until you need it.

Banana Nut Granola

A delicious granola to snack on, eat like cereal or top your favorite non-dairy yogurt or ice cream.

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  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • 2 Tbsp coconut oil
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 banana, mashed well
  • 3 cups rolled oats
  • 3/4 cup chopped raw walnuts
  • 3/4 cup chopped raw pecans
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 Tbsp cinnamon
  • 2 tbsp flax seed

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a small sauce pan combine maple syrup and coconut oil and gently heat on low until melted.

While that’s heating, combine oats, walnuts, pecans, salt, cinnamon and flax seed in a bowl and stir well.

Once the coconut oil has melted, add vanilla and banana to the sauce pan and stir well.  Pour liquid mixture over oat mixture and stir until well coated.

Prepare a baking pan with parchment paper.  Spread granola mixture over pan (if it’s too crowded, use 2 pans to help it crisp up better).  Bake 23+ minutes or until slightly browned and crisping up, breaking up and mixing around about half way through.  If you need to bake longer, check every minute or two as it can burn quickly.  Allow to cool on pan.  Once completely cool, transfer to glass bowl and store covered.

Vegetable Rice Soup

A delicious soup that is an easy crowd pleaser.  Add some bread on the side and you’ve got a great meal.  Consider doubling it to stock your freezer with some yummy soup!

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  • 1 onion
  • 5 cloves garlic, minced
  • 6 1/2 cups water/broth, depending on your salt preference – I did about 2/3 broth, 1/3 water
  • 1 can white beans (I used unsalted)
  • 3/4 cup brown rice (uncooked)
  • 2 (15 oz) cans diced tomatoes or 2 lbs of tomatoes, chopped
  • 2 stalks celery, chopped
  • 2 carrots, chopped
  • 2 cups mushrooms, chopped (optional – my daughter prefers without)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 tsp marjoram
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • 1 bunch Swiss chard, stems discarded; leaves chopped
  • 1/4 – 1/2 cup fresh basil, chopped

In a soup pot, saute onion for about 5 minutes.  Add garlic and saute a few minutes more.  Add all other ingredients except Swiss chard and basil.  Bring to a boil and simmer until rice is tender (about 45 minute – 1 hour).  Add Swiss chard and simmer 5 more minutes.  Add basil.  Stir well and serve.

Based on this recipe.

Chocolate Chocolate-Chip Scones

These are delicious.  A nice balance of sweet and not-too-sweet.  A great dessert that doesn’t feel decadent but is still a great chocolate fix!

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  • 1 1/4 cups spelt flour (or whole wheat pastry flour)
  • 2 cups oat flour (I make my own from rolled oats using a food processor)
  • 2 Tbsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 4 Tbsp cocoa
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup chocolate chips
  • 4 Tbsp maple syrup
  • 5 Tbsp unsweetened applesauce
  • 1 cup unsweetened original almond milk (or other non-dairy milk of your choice)
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla

Combine the dry ingredients (1st list) in a large bowl and mix well.  In a small bowl, whisk together the wet ingredients (2nd list).  Preheat oven to 400.  Add wet ingredients to dry and stir until just combined.

Prepare a baking sheet with parchment paper.  Using damp hands, form scone shapes of your favorite size and shape (about an inch thick).  I was able to make about 14 cupcake size scones.  Bake for 16 minutes.  Cool a bit and enjoy warm!

Sweet Potato Coconut Energy Cookies

This clean, healthy cookie is great for a end-of-dinner treat or in place of an energy bar when hiking/biking/running.  And, if you use GF oats, it is gluten free!

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  • 2 Tbsp flax meal
  • 5 Tbsp warm water
  • 1 cup sweet potato mash without skin (I roasted a large whole sweet potato, pierced several times, for 400 degrees for about an hour and it yielded 2 cups of mash)
  • 1/2 cup melted coconut butter **See Chef’s Note**
  • 2 Tbsp melted coconut oil
  • 3 Tbsp maple syrup
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1/2 cup almond meal/flour
  • 1/2 cup oat flour (you can blend/process your own)
  • 1 1/2 cups rolled oats
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped raw unsalted walnuts
  • chocolate chips

Combine flax meal and water in a small bowl and allow to sit.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Prepare a baking sheet with a piece of parchment paper.

In a medium/large mixing bowl, combine sweet potato, coconut butter, coconut oil, maple syrup and vanilla.  Stir well.  Add the flax meal/water mixture.  Stir well.

To the liquid mixture, add all remaining ingredients except chocolate chips and stir until combined.

Drop tablespoon sized blobs onto the baking sheet, pressing down slightly.  They won’t change much in size, so you can crowd them a bit.  Press 4 chocolate chips into the top of each one (a great job for a kid!).  Bake 15 – 17 minutes or until slightly browned and not super soft.  Cool for 2 minutes on the baking pan and then transfer to a cooling rack.  Keep refrigerated so that they last a few days.

**Chef’s Note** – You can buy coconut butter at most natural food stores, maybe some grocery stores, in the nut butter section generally.  OR, if you have a Vitamix or high powered blender, you can make your own for way cheaper!!  Buy a bag of shredded unsweetened coconut.  Dump it into the Vitamix (I use a 1 lb bag) and blend, increasing the speed slowly up to high and tamping regularly.  In a minute or so, POOF, MAGIC, you will have liquid!  Continue to blend for another minute or more so it gets nice and smooth.  Store in a glass container in your cabinets.  It will harden upon cooling.  When you want some, just cut out how much you want and heat it up in a glass bowl (microwave for 30 sec works for a small serving).  Delicious as a dip with apples (add cinnamon, too!), on toast with banana, or on dates for a decadent treat.  AMAZING.

Based on this recipe.

Gluten-free Corn Bread

This was delicious and paired nicely with Joe’s Chili.  You wouldn’t have guessed it was gluten free!

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  • 2 Tbsp ground flax meal
  • 6 Tbsp warm water
  • 1 cup almond milk (I used unsweetened original)
  • 1 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1 1/2 cups corn meal
  • 1 cup oat flour (I processed rolled oats to make this)
  • 1/4 cup almond flour (you could process almonds to make this)
  • 1 Tbsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/4 tsp paprika
  • 1/4 cup melted coconut oil or oil of your choice (you can taste the coconut if you use coconut oil)
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup

Combine flax and water in a small bowl.  Combine almond milk and vinegar in a 2 cup measuring cup or medium bowl.  Set aside a few minutes while you prepare the next step.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  In a large mixing bowl, combine corn meal through paprika and stir well.

Dump the flax-water mixture into the almond milk mixture.  Add melted coconut oil and maple syrup.  Stir well.  If your coconut oil solidifies, heat up a bit.

Add the liquids to the dry mixture and stir until combined.  Prepare your pan (I used a glass pie pan) with a light greasing.  Pour mixture into the pan and bake about 20 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.

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Based on this recipe.