Friday, July 25, 2014

Stone Fruit Crisp



I've been holding out on you. I made this crisp weeks ago, and have yet to share it! Summer stone fruits are some of my favorite fruits. If I had to choose a favorite, I'd say it's a tie between cherries and nectarines (I prefer the smoother skin of a nectarine over a peach). I usually devour them fresh before I ever get a chance to bake or cook them (especially cherries), but I made it a point to give this recipe a try. I used cherries and peaches, as that's what I had on hand, but feel free to use any other stone fruits, like plums or nectarines! I altered the original recipe a bit by adding some buckwheat flour and reducing the almond flour, as I didn't have enough almonds. I love how dark and nutty buckwheat flour is, so it was a welcome addition.  Being that it's made with all natural ingredients and is somewhat low in sugar compared to your typical crisp, it makes for a great breakfast! Oh, and so does this one. Enjoy!


Stone Fruit Crisp

Ingredients

Filling
3 large peaches, peeled, pitted, and diced
1 to 1 1/2 cups sweet cherries, pitted and halved
1 tablespoon corn starch
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 teaspoon chia seeds
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
Pinch of salt

Topping
1/4 cup almond flour (almond meal)
1/4 cup buckwheat flour*
1/2 cup oat flour
1/2 cup rolled oats
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
2 tablespoons coconut oil
2 tablespoons agave, real maple syrup, or honey (I used agave)
Pinch of salt, to taste

Directions

Preheat oven to 375F, and lightly grease a small (4 cup-ish) casserole dish.

Combine the filling ingredients together in a large bowl. Stir until fully incorporated.

I used my food processor, as I was dealing with slivered almonds and whole oats to make my own flours. If you go this route, blend together almonds, buckwheat flour, 1/2 cup of oats, and cinnamon. Process until powdery (or close to it). Drizzle in agave and coconut oil, and remaining 1/2 cup of oats and pulse until combined into a dough. Add salt to taste.

If you don't have a food processor and are dealing with pre-blended products, stir together almond flour, buckwheat flour, oats, and cinnamon. Add the agave and coconut oil and mash with a fork until thoroughly combined into a dough. Add salt to taste.

Spoon fruit filling into a casserole dish and level out. Crumble the topping over top of the fruit in an even layer. Bake, uncovered, at 375F for around 30 minutes, checking on the topping after 20 minutes. If the topping starts to brown too soon, you can remove it from the oven and cover with tin foil for the rest of the time. The crisp is ready when the fruit is fork tender and the topping is golden.

Cool for 5-10 minutes before serving. Serve on its own, or with greek yogurt, ice cream, or whipped cream.

*I used buckwheat flour, as I love the nutty flavor. If you don't have buckwheat flour, use an additional 1/4 cup of almond meal instead.

Recipe Source: adapted from Oh She Glows

Monday, July 7, 2014

Blackened Tilapia Baja Tacos


I love fish, but don't think to make it very often! It's silly, considering how healthy and delicious it is, not to mention how quick it cooks. Fish is the perfect summertime fare. A couple weeks ago, I had a mini "day-cation" with my best friend in Sandusky, OH (yeah Cedar Point!). If you follow me on instagram, you may have seen that we had the most AH-mazing fish tacos while we were there. They were seriously stellar. Once I got home, I found myself yearning for more, and that's when I remembered I had some frozen tilapia hanging out in the back of my freezer. These tacos did not disappoint! Honestly, the only thing I didn't like were the tortillas I bought. I don't have the desire to make them from scratch, and all the corn tortillas I buy at the store taste like cardboard (these were from Trader Joe's…ah well). I think I'll just go with flour tortillas next time. Problem solved!




Blackened Tilapia Baja Tacos

Ingredients

1/4 cup low-fat plain yogurt (or reduced-fat sour cream, or plain greek yogurt)
2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
2 tablespoon fresh lime juice
1 jalapeño pepper, seeded and chopped
1 cup thinly sliced white onion
1 1/2 teaspoons paprika
1 1/2 teaspoons brown sugar
1 teaspoon dried oregano
3/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon ground red pepper
4 (6 ounce) tilapia fillets
Cooking spray (or 1 tablespoon canola oil)
8 (6-inch) corn tortillas (I'm going with flour next time..can't seem to find decent corn tortillas!)
1/2 ripe peeled avocado, thinly sliced
Lime wedges, to garnish (optional)

Directions

Combine first four ingredients in a food processor, and process until smooth. Combine jalapeño sauce and onion in a small bowl.

Combine paprika and next six ingredients (through ground red pepper), and sprinkle evenly over both sides of the fish. Spray a large cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat. Add fish to pan, and cook 3 minutes on each side or until desired degree of doneness.

Warm tortillas according to package directions. Divide fish, onion mixture, and avocado evenly among tortillas. Serve with lime wedges.

Recipe source: adapted from Cooking Light, March 2011

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Overnight Chia Oat Parfaits


I love preparing breakfast the night before. My puffy eye'd self doesn't have to worry about anything but my morning coffee, which can also be programmed to be ready when I get up (though..it's summer..let's be real..I haven't programmed my coffee maker in about two months). I've heard about overnight oats for some time now, but never had enough forethought to make it. Thankfully, I came across this recipe one night, and got up and prepared it immediately. It was nummy, healthy, and very filling! When kept in a mason jar, this little parfait travels well, as evidenced by my most recent road trip. I obviously used strawberries and bananas, but feel free to use whatever fruits you have on hand. A parfait full of red and blue berries would make for an adorable 4th of July breakfast! Enjoy!

Chia Oat Parfaits

Ingredients

1/2 cup oats (I used quick cooking, but you could also used rolled oats)
2 tablespoons chia seeds
1 cup almond milk (I used original as it's slightly sweetened)
Optional: 1/2 up to 2 teaspoons agave, honey, or real maple syrup*
Fresh fruit: obviously, I used strawberries and bananas…num!

Directions

The night before, combine oats, chia seeds, milk, and sweetener (if using) in a mason jar or air tight container. Seal, and place in the fridge overnight.

In the morning, layer in a glass or mason jar with fruit in between.

This recipe yields two servings.

*I used half a teaspoon of agave, and it was sweet enough for me. I may even leave it out next time, as the fruit is usually sweet enough for me.

Recipe source: adapted from Pure Ella

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Pasta and Grilled Zucchini Salad

Lately, I've been obsessed with grilled zucchini. Sprinkled with a little Tony's and lightly brushed with olive oil is my favorite way to make it. I add grilled zucchini to veggie wraps, or just eat it by itself...I never tire of it's smokey goodness. When I saw this recipe on Smitten Kitchen, I knew immediately I had to try it. I also knew right away that I wanted to grill my zucchini instead of fry it. There's already a good bit of olive oil in the homemade pesto, and the flavor of grilling your veggies versus frying them can't be beat. 

It may seem like there's a lot of steps involved, but it actually came together pretty quickly. There's very little chopping, and it's pretty easy to multi-task. From start to finish, it only took me about 30 minutes. Not bad at all, and the end result is worth it! I'd like to say it gets even better the next day, but I went on a mini vacay the next day, and Chris ate the rest. Obviously, he thought it was pretty nummy. Can you blame him?


I didn't think so.

Pasta and Grilled Zucchini Salad

Ingredients

Cooking spray
3 medium (or 2 large) zucchini, cut into 1/4 inch thick slices
1 1/2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
3/4 cup fresh or frozen edamame or peas
2 cups basil leaves, coarsely chopped
1/4 cup parsley leaves
1/3 cup olive oil
9 ounces pasta (stozzapreti, penne, etc.)
Zest of 1 lemon
1 1/2 tablespoons capers, chopped (mine were pretty big)
7 ounces buffalo mozzarella, torn into chunks
Salt and pepper

Directions

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.

Meanwhile, lightly spray grill with cooking spray. Grill zucchini slices over medium high heat, about 3-4 minutes per side, turning once. Transfer to a large bowl, sprinkle with salt and pour vinegar on top. Set aside.

When the water is boiling, cook pasta until al dente, adding the edamame during the last 3 minutes of cooking if frozen, or during the last 1-2 minutes if using fresh. Drain and rinse under cold water; set aside.

While the pasta cooking, combine half of the basil and all of the parsley and olive oil in a food processor or blender. Process until smooth, then season with salt and pepper. 

Transfer pasta back to the empty pot, or a large bowl. Add zucchini and any juices, basil-parsley oil, lemon zest, capers, and mozzarella. Gently stir together, then season generously with salt and pepper. Right before you serve it, stir in remaining basil leaves.

Recipe source: adapted from Smitten Kitchen who adapted it from Plenty by Yotam Ottolenghi

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Tropical Green Monster


Hello there! Yes, it's been a while. I unintentionally stepped back from this space over the past month, and I think I know why. I feel like I get into cooking ruts, especially at the beginning of each season (well, except for maybe fall and winter...soup is my jam). Over the past few weeks, I've tried to simplify what I cook and how we eat, not to mention try to eat healthier whole foods. That's not to say I won't be baking this summer (I have a batch of these in the freezer for when my sweet tooth kicks in), but I am trying to cut back on sugar, and the more fruits and vegetables I eat, the easier that is to do.  Expect some healthy veggie-full recipes in the near future!

I've been obsessing over smoothies this summer, averaging at least four a week! Strawberry banana is my fave when I want an all fruit smoothie, but this one is probably my favorite green one. Green smoothies aren't new to me or probably many of you, but this one is worth sharing. I got my inspiration from a recipe I saw on here on Eat Live Run, which I also recommend. SO good! Like all smoothies, the proportions and ingredients are up to you, so use this as inspiration! The measurements below are rough measurements. I hope you enjoy this green treat as much as I do! :)

Tropical Green Monster

Ingredients

A handful of fresh spinach
Roughly one cup chopped frozen mango
1 banana 
1/2 cup light coconut milk
Squeeze of lime juice
Water (or coconut water), if needed to thin it out to desired consistency 

Other add-in ideas: 
Frozen pineapple (omg so good!)
Chia Seeds
Fresh mint
Fresh ginger

Directions 

Place all ingredients in a blender and process until smooth. Serve immediately.
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