Tag Archives: Breakfast

Blueberry and Lemon Muffins. Paleo Style.

17 Jan

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DO NOT BE ALARMED.

This blog and myself have not gone Paleo. Though, that would be a good excuse for my absence. Something like: ‘I hate everything and everyone. You can all just piss off. I am so miserable that I have to give up grains and beans that I might die and this blog is just not worth it anymore’! Now THAT would be an excuse.

Instead, same old – same old. Your girl is busy.

Don’t get me wrong here. I respect those who have made a commitment to a Paleo diet. I know someone who had terrible arthritis and has been Paleo for more than a year now, her symptoms are all but gone. There is no doubt that some people have allergies to food and have no idea that their health problems may be affected by what they are eating. It is certainly worth it to give an exclusion diet a shot if you feel like your health might be affected by an allergy.

With that in mind, I asked for this book for Christmas. See what the fuss was all about.

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I had picked it up once before and thought that the basic nutrition principles were great, something that I would enjoy reading. Really concise and easy to follow. The recipes were also right along my lines of healthy and holistic eating. I do really enjoy the book and will have my way with adapting the recipes to my liking. Not that they need much, they are pretty great.

OK: the goods. These muffins caught my attention in that they would be a low-glycemic-protein-packed-snack-on-the-go type of treat. You know how I roll, this is my thing.

Why you should eat this? 

It’s cold/flu season! What you need now is antioxidants. Blueberries are full of antioxidants and these muffins are not shy of blueberry goodness. In fact, I feel as if the ingredients in this muffin that are not blueberries, are just there to showcase how much blueberry goodness there is in these muffins. Added bonus that the muffins are hearty in egg which makes them packed with protein and gluten-free which makes them low glycemic. Perfect snack to make you feel full until the next meal.

Rejoice in these muffins, guys. They are healthy and delicious.

Blueberry Lemon Muffins

Source: Diane Sanfillipo (Servings: 12)

  • 6 eggs
  • ½ cup butter or coconut oil, melted
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • ¼ cup grade B maple syrup
  • 1 lemon, juice and zest
  • ½ cup coconut flour (I feel like you can use Almond flour or Oat flour if your not going Paleo here)
  • ½ teaspoon sea salt
  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 cup fresh blueberries

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Whisk together the eggs, butter or coconut oil, vanilla, maple syrup, and lemon juice/zest.

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Fold in the blueberries.

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Add mix to lined muffin pan and bake for 30-35 minutes.

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They won’t rise very much, so keep an eye on how brown they get.

Eat warm with a slather of butter or just as they are.

Trust me. So good.

Nichole

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Pumpkin Spice Protein Smoothie

26 Sep

The seasons are changing right?

If I never went outside or didn’t look at a calendar, I would know that it is Fall from the posts on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram about a certain pumpkin spice flavored latte from that one coffee place. People really love that super sweet, cinnamon-y, slightly pumpkin flavored drink.

I’m no fan. Coffee is coffee. Let it be coffee.

What am I a fan of? Well, Fall. And I LOVE me some pumpkin pie. The rich creamy, spicy flavors of a pumpkin pie = pure love. In fact when I make a pumpkin pie (near future), I will post a picture of it and proclaim my love across all social media outlets. Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, all of them. Because that is how you show something you really love it.

** Fall in San Francisco is apparently prime surf season. I literally learn something new about this city every day. These guys look like they can use a smoothie.

Recently I read about a pumpkin spice milkshake (by read, I mean I saw it on the menu at a burger joint) and I immediately thought about this as a smoothie. Frankly, these days, the line is really blurry between milkshake and protein smoothie. I have come to really look forward to my smoothies as a treat. I believe that I actually run at a better (faster) pace because I SO look forward to my reward at the end of the run. It’s this kind of rich and creamy deliciousness that has made me a better runner. Quote me on it.

Oh and in case you guys are keeping track – I did really well at the Giant Race. Now I am training for the Nike Women’s marathon on October 14th.

I know, I can’t believe it either.

Why you should eat this?

It’s better than that latte.

Ok, ok, ok. PUMPKIN!! Get it off your porch and into your smoothie.

Pumpkin is rich in vitamin A, C, and E. Vitamin A is a powerful anti-oxidant and is required by the body for maintaining healthy, glowing skin! So you can go ahead and use the remaining pumpkin puree on your face. This smoothie is so good, you might want to just rub it all over your face too.

No? Just me?

Rich in B-complex vitamins like folates, niacin, vitamin B-6 (pyridoxine), thiamin and pantothenic acid. This smoothie is great source of B vitamins for those who eat little to no animal proteins.

What are we waiting for?

Pumpkin Spice Protein Smoothie (Servings: 1 pretty big smoothie)

  • ½ cup canned pumpkin
  • 1/2 cup almond milk (if using vanilla flavored – skip the vanilla extract)
  • 1 frozen banana
  • 1 tablespoon honey (can also use agave)
  • 1 scoop of vanilla protein powder (your choice – I like hemp protein)
  • 1 tablespoon chia seeds
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg, cinnamon and ginger

Blend it all together and enjoy! Add more almond milk if you want to loosen the consistency, more spices if you want an extra kick. Get some adventure in your life.

Trust me, so good.

Nichole

Gluten Free Banana Protein Pancakes

31 Aug

Well, I’m still hungry.

Here is what I came up with last night in a moment of desperation. That moment was about 11-ish. In case you missed my last post (ahem, how dare you) I am training for a half marathon and my metabolism is off the charts.

I know what it feels like to be Michael Phelps. Minus all the gold. Ok, perhaps I just know a little about what it is like to have Michael Phelps’ metabolism. And his long wing span, my arms are really long.

Anyhow, these pancakes are good. They were especially good as a guilt free midnight snack. Don’t limit your pancake consumption to weekend brunches, folks. Live a little. These pancakes are a dense and gooey version of the classic. Banana filled, with a nutty texture, sweet and cinnamon-y. Good. AND good for you. Full of protein, omega 3’s, potassium, fiber, and gluten free.

Golf claps.

I like my pancakes with fruit preserves (jams, jelly, marmalade, you get the idea) and fresh fruit. By all means you can put butter and maple syrup on these … and if the mood stikes you – NUTELLA (food of the gods).

 

Here I had them with guava jelly and almond butter…mmmmm.

Why you should eat these? 

Bananas are one of our best sources of potassium, an essential mineral for maintaining normal blood pressure and heart function. Since the average banana contains 467 mg of potassium and only 1 mg of sodium, a banana a day may help to prevent or reduce high blood pressure.

Potassium is also one of the most important electrolytes, which helps to regulate heart function and fluid balance. Very important for athletes (yes, I’m an athlete).

You shouldn’t need more reasons to eat these. Sugar free, gluten free, full of goodness, and so easy.

All you’ll need.

Gluten Free Banana Protein Pancakes (Servings: 6)

  • 2 small bananas
  • 2 eggs
  • 3-4 tablespoons oat flour (Can use ANY flour)
  • 3 tablespoons of protein powder (I like Hemp, can use any or none at all)
  • 1 tablespoon (or more) Coconut Milk (Can use water, milk, or almond milk)
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

 

 

Add all ingredients to a food processor and blend. Check consistency, depending on the flour you use, you may need a little more liquid. Add in a tablespoon at a time.

 

Heat a pan with oil or butter. I used coconut oil, it is a high heat oil and it imparts a sweet nutty flavor that I like.

Let the pan get hot, then add your batter. Turn down the heat to medium to medium low. The key here is slow and low. Cook on this side for about 7-10 minutes.

 

The pancake will get brown around the edges, then like a normal pancake, they will form small bubbles. Flip.

 

This side will take another 7-10 minutes to cook. Guys, they’re worth the wait.

Serve hot.

Eat happily, brush your teeth, and go to bed. I know I will.

Trust me, so good.

Nichole

 

 

 

Mostly Muesli

7 Mar

Last year when I was eating my way though Italy,  there were times when I became desperate for something that resembled fiber. In a country full of pasta, rich meats, pasta, overly braised greens, pasta, and bread…. there it was, my morning solace: muesli. I loved to say that breakfast in Europe is mostly muesli (tongue twister).

Don’t call it granola.

Europeans will not know what you are talking about and then you will really have NO fiber. You’ll have to go chew on a cardboard box, believe me, I considered it. Fast forward to now and I rarely say granola anymore, it makes me sound worldly and well traveled. Honestly there is not a big difference in the two. I find that store bought granola tends to be more crunchy than store bought muesli. Muesli as an American adaption is more of a cereal and granola a more snack-on-the-go or yogurt topping.

This recipe really allows for all of those purposes. I make a big batch and keep it stored in an air tight container. I eat it with fresh fruit and almond milk like cereal. I also have it over yogurt, and keep it in a baggie for on-the-go-snacking. Its a really versatile recipe. This version is an ode to my Hawaiian roots. Lots of honey toasted coconut and dried pineapple. I sometimes go with raisins and cinnamon. Maybe even cranberries and yogurt (or white chocolate) chips. Let your imagination run wild, when you find a variation that you love, you may never buy boxed cereal or granola again.

Why you should eat this? 

Whole oats are an excellent source of  thiamine, iron, and fiber. Fiber is helpful in reducing cholesterol levels in the bloodstream. Oat products in general also contain beta-glucan, which may help people with Type 2 diabetes control their blood glucose level, and might also help stimulate the immune system to fight off bacterial infections. ** If you have diabetes, for this recipe, you might want to forgo the dried fruit. Dried fruit tends to be high in sugar content.

Hawaiian Muesli   (8 servings)

  • 6 c. of Rolled Oats
  • 1 c. raw sunflower seeds
  • 1 c. slivered almonds
  • 1 c. unsweetened shredded coconut
  • 2 tbsp. raw sesame seeds
  • 3/4 c. honey
  • 4 tbsp. vegetable oil (or coconut oil, my fave)
  • 1/4 c. dried pineapple, diced
  • 1/4 c. dried turkish apricots
  • 1/4c. unsweetened dried cranberries

*** If you do not normally shop in the bulk section at health food stores, this is a good recipe to start with! Bring your list and get to exploring the bins. It is easy and you will save a lot of money by shopping for just the amount that you need.

Preheat the oven to 300 degrees

Put rolled oats into a large bowl. Add sunflower seeds, slivered almonds, shredded coconut and sesame seeds. Stir to combine. Set aside.

Heat honey and oil in a saucepan over low heat.

Pour the warm honey mixture over the dry ingredients and stir until they are well coated.

Spread the mixture on across two baking sheets and bake for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. The mix should get a nice color brown, like a tan.

Remove from the oven and allow to cool.

You don’t get to rest during this time. MEANWHILE, dice up your dried fruit. Like this.

And like this.

When the oat mixture is cool, add your dried fruit.

Give a big stir and voila! You will love it.

Share the health and enjoy!

Sweet Potato Hash

30 Jan

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I know exactly what you should make for breakfast. Sweet Potato Hash. So good. Everyone tells me so and I believe everything that I hear when it comes to my cooking. By everything, I mean everything GOOD. If you have any dissent, I just assume that you have a terrible palate and there’s not much I can do with that.

I digress.

So the hash, its warm, sweet, spicy, deliciously comforting for chilly SF mornings. Well, any morning really. In particular, those ones where you maybe had a few too many cocktails the night before. You can pretty much match it up with anything that is breakfast like. In a quick pinch I will go with a fried egg on top, the gooey yolk running through the potatoes is incredible. It would be irresponsible of me to not have tried this with bacon, crazy amazing of course. Alongside pancakes, french toast, steak and eggs, Bloody Mary? Unbelievable. Let your imagination run wild. Also, let your hot sauce run wild. No really. I’m talkin’ Cholula, Tapatio, Tabasco…. you know the deal.

My devotion to this hash is a labor of love. As with anything to do with sweet potatoes there is a good deal of commitment involved, peeling, chopping, blanching…. don’t let this put you off. You can make this in huge batches, might as well, let it cool and freeze it in plastic bags. It will be worth your time. Trust me.

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Sweet potatoes (the orange fleshed ones with brown skin) are rich in anti-oxidents in particular beta-carotene, have proven to actually improve blood sugar regulation in Type-2 diabetes, and are a great source of fiber.

So eat up!

Sweet Potato Hash

Serves (4-6 )

Quick note: I like to use Coconut oil, I love the mild sweetness that it imparts, I know not everyone is that loyal to an oil (uhhh, that can be a future rap song). Use any high heat oil that you have, grape seed is a good one, even an organic canola. Olive oil is not a high heat oil, for this recipe you really want to brown the hash, so its nice to get to a high heat and not have the smoke that Olive oil or butter might give off.

  • 2-3lbs Sweet Potatoes , Orange Fleshed Ones, Diced
  • 1 Onion, Diced
  • 1 Red bell , Diced
  • 1 Green Bell, Diced
  • 4 Garlic Cloves , Minced
  • 1 Jalepeno, Minced
  • 2tbs Coconut Oil
  • Salt and Pepper

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Set a large pot of heavily salted water to boil. Roughly dice everything. I like the potatoes to be different shapes and sizes, so that there is a bit of difference in texture.

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Ok don’t dice the garlic. Mince that sucker and don’t be shy. If you like garlic. ADD. SOME. GARLIC.

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In the same spirit of the garlic. If you like jalepeno. ADD. SOME. JALEPENO.

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Chef tip: Prep everything beforehand and have it ready for action. We call it: Mis en Place (French for everything in place) or meez in the business. I’m sure the French totally appreciate the way we American cooks chop up their language.

When the water is boiling rapidly, throw all of the poatoes in and give a quick stir. Let them return to a boil about 5 minutes, not much longer, drain and set aside. (No pictures of this because it is a quick process where I needed both hands. Sorry about it).

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Add oil to the pan at about medium heat. If you have a big batch of this, you will want to divide this into 2 or more pans. You really want to not crowd the pans too much, a nice single layer in each pan will pretty much guarantee that you get nice even brown.

Browning = the good stuff.

Sweat onions for a few minutes, add a bit of salt at this point, add garlic, bells, and jalepeno and let sauté for a good 5-8 minutes. The onions should be translucent about now. Add in the potatoes. Stir a bit, then let them sit at medium heat.

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Again, browning = the good stuff.

Stir everything around a couple times to get some of the smaller potatoes to mash and really mix in the flavors. Let it sit some more. Take a nice long sip of that bloody mary. Update your Facebook status (Making breakfast y’all!!)

You really can’t go wrong at this point. If the pan begins to turn black, GOOD!

Test the tenderness of one of the larger chunks of potato to make sure that it is ready. Finish with a good long grind of fresh black pepper and a good amount of salt.

Enjoy!