Tuesday, August 25, 2015

dairy-free ice-cream-maker-free bananaberry ice cream

For the life of me, I can't find where I got this recipe. Forgive me if it's from your blog, but I have absolutely no clue about its origin. I wrote it down some time ago and finally got around to making it.

Why didn't I do this before?

You'll need:
  • 2 bananas, frozen and sliced
  • 1/2 cup frozen berries
  • 2 T. almond milk
  • 1/2 t. vanilla
Do this:

Blend the berries and bananas in a food processor till slushy, then add the milk and vanilla in and swirl again till it's smooth and creamy.

Then dig in! I ate it while reading To Kill a Mockingbird

I doubled this recipe for four people, but we had leftovers and I froze a couple small portions for the Beans, which they consumed enthusiastically after a long bike ride the next afternoon.

Friday, August 14, 2015

zingy gluten- and dairy-free apricot crumble

More oven usage! Yippee! I'm so excited to have my oven up and going and working for me. It's been a long time since I had one.

This was last night's just desserts.

You'll need:
  • 1 15-oz. (425 g) can of apricots (save the juice!), or fresh if you have them
  • lemon juice, for sprinkling
  • 1 cup oats
  • 1/2 c. almond flour
  • 1 t. cinnamon
  • 1/8 t. nutmeg
  • 3 T. Okinawan black sugar (or regular brown)
  • 4 T. melted coconut oil
  • 1/8 t. salt
  • 3 T. chopped crystallized ginger
Do this:

Drain your apricots, reserving the liquid. Chop the apricots into bite-sized pieces, and lay in the bottom of a pie plate or other oven-proof dish. Sprinkle a little lemon juice over the top to add zing!

For the topping, add your oats, almond flour, cinnamon, nutmeg, black (or brown) sugar, salt, and crystallized ginger to a bowl, stirring till mixed. Then drizzle over the melted coconut oil and squish it in with your fingers or the mixing spoon.

Sprinkle the topping over the apricots, then bake at 180 C/350 F for about 30 minutes, till the topping is crispy and a wee bit browned and the apricots are bubbly and luscious. 

Thursday, August 13, 2015

simple savoury summer "parfaits"

This is so quick, easy, and refreshing for summer. Takes about two minutes to put together, tops. An easy side to go with a main dish of hot weather. (If you eat dairy, some chopped mozzarella would be a superb addition, methinks.)

Layer sliced cucumbers, chopped tomatoes, and fresh basil in a glass, sprinkling a tiny bit of sea salt on each layer as you go. Then whisk a teaspoon of extra virgin olive oil with a teaspoon of balsamic vinegar and a pinch of sea salt, then pour over a couple of cups.

I like to stripe-ify my cukes with a veggie peeler before slicing. More fun that way!

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

natural pain management (with help from my kitchen, of course)

At the suggestion of my friend Julie, I'm jotting down a few ways that we naturally manage pain round these parts. My sister and I were hit by a drunk driver in a hit-and-run car accident when I was eighteen, and I've been dealing with neck and back pain ever since. My husband Stephen also deals with pain as he sits at a desk and works on a computer for a crazy number of hours every day. Some of these suggestions came out of his research and some were recommended to us.
  • Walking. We try to do this as often as possible, and up and over mountains is even better.
  • Using our trampoline (or rebounding, as it's now called). We've got a mini one, and I do at least 500 jumps at one time, making up different crazy ways to dance, jump, and swing my arms. It really does bring me joy!
  • Pete Egoscue's book and/or CD called Pain Free. We couldn't do without our maintenance routine, and when we have specific pain (neck, back, shoulder, knee, etc.), there's a chapter for each part of the body and stretches specific to those areas.
  • Boswellia and curcumin: natural herbal anti-inflammatories that work like magic. Curcumin is also called turmeric, so make lots of curry and throw tons of that great stuff in there.
  • Gelatin: this stuff is wondrous. One of our sons has ligament laxity, and as a result of taking gelatin every day, he's now really strong and his ligament laxity seems nonexistent. No more wobbly body for him. Also, I used to wake up during the night, hardly able to move or turn over because of my lower back pain. After we started taking gelatin, I haven't had this problem at all. I heat up a half a mug of veggie/fruit juice (I actually just use water for me) and dissolve a packet with 5 grams of gelatin in each one at breakfast time, just once a day. You can put gelatin in when you're cooking your rice or a stew, or you could actually make some homemade jello with fruit juice.
  • Seven-minute workout: this workout right here. It's grand! (No gym required.)
  • Swimming and sitting in Japanese hot tubs work great, too, when you can indulge.
Don't be a pain! Be pain free, using some of these low-cost and low-maintenance solutions. 

Monday, August 10, 2015

oven's maiden voyage: roasted taters

What could be better than digging potatoes yourself and then blessing them with a roasting in your new oven?
Once we finally figured out how to get our oven off "demo" mode (it had been the floor model so it was on that special non-cooking mode--we had to call the appliance shop and they didn't know either, then had to research and call us back), we could then roast those taters

Here we are digging them up just a week ago in the mountains of Kanazawa:
Simple, really: dig and cook.

You'll need:
  • scrubbed and chopped potatoes
  • olive oil
  • sea salt
Do this:

Every oven is different, but I tossed our taters with olive oil and chunky sea salt, then roasted them at 200 C/400 F for about 30 minutes, then turned up the volume to 230 C/450 F for another 13 minutes, and finally, I turned on the grill function for an extra 5 minutes to brown them a bit.

Such fresh-tasting taters, with no mealiness or dryness. 

Saturday, August 8, 2015

the creamiest goatmeal

We call it goatmeal round these parts, and here's how I make it.

You'll need:
  • 1 cup oatmeal (I think mine is the quick-cooking variety)
  • 2 cups milk (I use 1 c. soy milk and 1 c. almond milk, but you're welcome to use dairy, or even goat's milk!)
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/4 c. dried cranberries
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 t. nutmeg
  • 1/2 t. cinnamon
  • 1/4 t. ground ginger
  • 1/4 t. vanilla extract
  • for topping: coconut oil and honey
Do this:

Cook your oatmeal according to the package directions. I throw everything except for the toppings in the pot at the beginning, because I like my cranberries plump.

After it's all creamy and hot and ready, pour a little melted coconut oil and honey on each bowlful. I served ours with boiled eggs, Japanese in-season white peaches, and some sausages.