4:04 PM

Almond joy bars!


For the chocolate:

  • 1/2 cup coconut oil 
  • 4 TBSP unsweetened coconut milk
  • 4 TBSP maple syrup
  • 3/4 cup cacao powder
  • For the coconut part:

  • 3 cups organic unsweetened coconut flakes 
  • 1/4 cup raw honey OR 5 TBSP maple syrup 
  • 1 tsp real vanilla
  • 6 TBSP  butter, melted
  • Raw organic almonds, whole or chopped
  • Step 1:

    Toast almonds at 400 degrees in oven for 8-10 minutes (optional-sometimes I don’t toast them, they are great either way.)

    Step 2:

    In a small saucepan on the lowest heat possible, melt the coconut oil and gradually whisk in the coconut milk, maple syrup, and cacao powder. The mixture should be both thick and smooth, but not runny. If it is too dry, add more coconut oil or coconut milk.

    Step 3:

    Line an 8×8 glass pan with parchment/wax paper OR alternatively line a cupcake pan with cupcake liners.

    Step 4:

    Pour half the chocolate mixture into the bottom of the pan. Set aside.

    Step 5:

    In a large bowl, mix together the coconut flakes, honey/maple syrup, and melted butter.


    Step 6:

    Scoop the coconut mixture into the pan.

    Step 7:

    Pour the remaining chocolate over the coconut mixture. Then top with the almonds.

    Step 8:

    Place in fridge or freezer to cool. If you made these in an 8×8 glass pan, then cut them into squares before serving. Enjoy! :)

    12:23 PM

    Cranberry vanilla granola


    Dry:

    8 cups rolled oats
    2 cups unsweetened coconut
    2 cups chopped almonds

    Wet:
    12 tbsp butter
    1 cup honey
    2 tbsp vanilla
    1 tsp salt
    1/4 cup olive oil

    Mix the dry together. 
    In saucepan mix all the wet ingredience over low heat till butter is melted. 
    Add to dry and mix well. 

    Bake at 300 for 30 min, stirring every 5-10 min. 
    Stir in 2 cups of cranberries when granola is out of the oven. 

    I use apple sweetened cranberries from naural grocers! 

    2:26 PM

    Honey whole wheat bread~



    Ingredients:

    2 cups warm water
    2 1/2 tsp. yeast
    1/3 cup honey 
    1/3 cup olive oil
    1/3 cup gluten flour
    2 tsp. salt
    5-6 cups whole wheat flour ( or 3 cups whole wheat and 2-3 cups un bleached white flour) 

    Instructions:

    Combine warm water, honey and yeast. Let stand 10 minutes, or until bubbly. 
    Add salt, gluten flour, oil and 3 cups flour. Mix well, until flour is completely incorporated.
    Add flour till dough cleans side of bowl and is slightly sticky. Dough should not stick yo your hands. 
    Kneed for 5-7 min and plop into a oiled bowl. Let rise for about a hr in a warm room
    Punch down and shape into loaves. Place loaves in heavily buttered bread pans. Let rise till 1" above rim of pan. Bake at 350 for 30 minutes. Remove from pans and place on wire rack. Coat top of loaves with butter. 

    Yields 2 loaves! Enjoy~


    9:57 AM

    Homemade ketchup

    Making your own ketchup is so EASY to make at home and making it yourself allows you to control what goes into it.

    Ketchup is as American as apple pie, that sweet-sour combination on french fries are irresistible and who doesn't love it on their burgers! But have you ever checked the label of your favorite brand of ketchup? High Fructose Corn Syrup is used to sweeten most brands of ketchup although I did find organic Heinz ketchup in my health food store that does not contain HFCS's, but it was half the size at a higher price.

    So I thought it would be fun to try making my own and tested and played around with a few recipes until I found one that I loved with some slight changes using honey as my sweetener.

    Ingredients:

    • 6 oz can tomato paste
    • 1/4 cup honey 
    • 1/2 cup white vinegar
    • 1/4 cup water
    • 3/4 tsp salt
    • 1/4 tsp onion powder
    • 1/8 tsp garlic powder

    Directions:

    Combine all the ingredients in a medium saucepan over medium heat; whisk until smooth.


    When it comes to a boil, reduce heat to low and simmer for 20 minutes, stirring often.

    Remove from heat and cover until cool. Chill and store refrigerated in a covered container.

    9:52 AM

    Honey corn bread ( has dairy)


    Honey Corn Bread Muffins
     
    Ingredients
    • 2 cups flour
    • 1 cup cornmeal
    • 1½ tsp baking powder
    • 1 tsp baking soda
    • ½ tsp salt
    • 2 eggs
    • ½ cup honey
    • ½ cup butter, melted
    • ¾ cup light sour cream
    • ½ cup milk (I used skim milk)
    Instructions
    1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
    2. Grease or line a standard sized 12 cup muffin tin. Set aside.
    3. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, cornmeal, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
    4. In another bowl, whisk eggs until just beaten. Then whisk in honey, sour cream, and milk until blended. Then slow drizzle in the butter while whisking until combined.
    5. Add liquid mixture to the dry mixture and stir together with a spoon just until combined and all the flour is moist. Do not over mix.
    6. Divide batter between prepared muffin tin. Bake at 400 degrees for 14-18 minutes until golden.
    7. Allow to cool in tin for 5 minutes. Remove and serve.

    9:48 AM

    Coconut milk ice cream



    Ingredients: 
    • 4 egg yolks
    • 1/2 cup honey 
    • 1 (13.5-ounce) can light coconut milk
    • 1 (13.5-ounce) can regular coconut milk
    • 2 teaspoons vanilla 
    Method: 

    In a large bowl, whisk yolks and honey together until pale yellow, 1 to 2 minutes. Add light and regular coconut milk and whisk again until well combined. 

    Transfer coconut mixture to a medium pot and cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until just thickened and mixture coats the back of a spoon, 8 to 10 minutes. Be sure not to let the mixture boil. Remove pot from the heat and stir in vanilla. 

    Transfer contents of pot to a bowl and chill until cold. Process mixture in an ice cream maker according to manufacturer's instructions then transfer to a container with a lid and freeze until firm, about 2 hours more.

    9:42 AM

    Banana pancakes!


    INGREDIENTS
    • 2 cups whole-wheat flour (I use King Arthur’s organic white whole-wheat flour)
    • 2 teaspoons baking powder
    • 1 ½ teaspoons baking soda
    • ½ teaspoon salt
    • 1 tablespoon honey
    • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
    • 1 ¾ cups milk
    • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted + butter for frying
    • 2 ripe bananas, mashed
    • 100% pure maple syrup for serving
    INSTRUCTIONS
    1. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
    2. Make a well (hole) in the center of the flour mixture and pour in the honey, eggs, milk, and 2 tablespoons of melted butter. Whisk together thoroughly, but do not overmix.
    3. Gently fold the mashed bananas into the batter with a spatula.
    4. Heat a griddle or sauté pan over medium-high heat. Swirl enough butter around the pan until it is well coated. Add pancake batter using a soup ladle.
    5. When the pancakes have begun brown on the bottom, flip them over to cook the other side.
    6. Serve with warm maple syrup and a side of fruit. And don’t forget to freeze the leftovers for another day!

    9:29 AM

    Jello~

    Here is a Juice Jello recipe sweetened with honey that is a nice treat.  We do this for a treat since gelatin is supposed
    to be so good for "the gut"
    Juice Jello
    1 cup grape juice ( or juice of your choice )
    Sprinkle 5-6 Tbs gelatin over juice - let dissolve
    Add 2 cups boiling water
    1/3 cup honey
    Mix well
    Add 5 cups cold grape juice (this works with most juice, not just grape)
    Can stir in fruit. Refrigerate.

    9:26 AM

    Honey candy

    2/3 cup butter
    1/2 cup honey
    1 1/2 cups slivered almonds

    Melt butter in saucepan. Add honey. Stir together and add nuts. Bring to a
    low boil over low/medium heat. Boil 7 minutes. Pour mixture into buttered
    8x8 dish. Cool. Cut while warm. Store in refrigerator, but serve at room
    temperature.

    You can add whatever you think would be good to this, it doesn't have to be
    slivered almonds, it can be chopped almonds or pecans, we add pumpkin
    seeds, golden raisins, sesame seeds….makes it different every time

    The thing about this recipe is that 7 minutes of boiling is different from
    stovetop to stovetop. I have gas heat and find that 7 minutes of anything
    but very low boiling is too much and the candy gets brittle. If you like
    hard candy to suck on, boil it higher and for the whole 7 minutes and pour
    it onto a cookie sheet and break it when it gets hard. If you like it
    softer, boil it on as low heat as you can and maybe just for 6 minutes. You
    have to experiment using your own pans, and heat source. Hard or soft, it
    still tastes good.

    9:23 AM

    Mini maple muffins



    1 1/4 cups rice milk or regular milk
    2/3 cup pure maple syrup
    2 eggs
    3 tbsp melted butter

    2 cups whole wheat flour
    2 1/2 tsp baking powder
    1 tsp cinnamon
    3/4 tsp salt
    1 cup chopped walnuts( optional )

    Combine wet ingredients using a whisk. 

    In a separate bowl mix dry ingredience

    Add both mixtures together

    Bake at 350 for 12 min. For regular size muffins bake for 20-25 min

    12:15 PM

    Toddler chicken nuggets


    2 chicken breasts
    2 eggs
    1/3 cup finely grated Parmesan cheese(optional)
    1/3 cup bread crumbs 
    1/2 tsp onion powder
    1/2 tsp garlic powder
    1/2 tsp salt
    1 tsp parsley
    Melted butter for drizzling 

    INSTRUCTIONS:
    Boil chicken breast till almost fully cooked
    Cool
    Blend chicken in blender with 2 eggs till slightly chunky.
    Roll into balls and flatten to desired thickness.

    MIX:
    Bread crumbs
    Parmesan cheese
    And seasonings 

    Roll chicken balls in breading mixture. Place on buttered baking sheet and drizzle butter over top if you want them more crispy

    Bake at 400 for 20 minutes. Turn half way through cooking for more crispy chicken. 

    10:53 AM

    Creamy Coconut/almond milk


    1 cup raw almonds
    1 cup unsweetened coconut 
    2 tbsp raw honey
    1 tsp pure vanilla

    INSTRUCTIONS:
    Soak almonds in cold water overnight. 
    Blend 1 cup almonds with 3 cups cold water for 1-2 minutes. 
    Strain through cheesecloth and squeeze to get out as much as possible. 

    Blend 1 cup of coconut with 3 cups hot water. Add 2 tbsp of raw honey or maple syrup and 1 tsp vanilla. Blend on high for 3 minutes. Strain through cheesecloth. 

    Blend the two together and store in a jar in fridge for yo to 4 days!

    2:05 PM

    Yummy Peanut butter balls

    I don't use much peanut butter as it is very hard to digest and our liver does not do well with it. 

     These are a very healthy snack that all of us love!!!

    6 cups rolled oats
    1 cup honey
    1/2 cup cocoa powder or carob powder
    2 tsp pure vanilla
    1 1/2 cups peanut butter
    1 cube melted butter

    Mix all together and roll in finely shredded unsweetened coconut or finely blended almonds! 
    I usually double or triple the recipe so that you can store lots of them in the freezer! 
     

    1:48 PM

    Honey Caramels

    Honey Caramels


    1 cup Honey
    3/4 cup Heavy Cream or coconut milk
    1 1/2 teaspoons Pure Vanilla Extract
    2 Tablespoons Butter

    Combine honey and cream in a sauce pan and bring to a boil. Stir occasionally while it cooks. Continue cooking until the mixture reaches soft ball stage.
    The easiest way to do this is with a candy thermometer, though you can test it with other methods. Remove pan from the heat and immediately stir in vanilla and butter. Stir until butter is completely melted and combined. Pour into a generously buttered 8 by 8 dish or smaller if you want thick large caramels. Having your dish properly buttered is important for easy removal of the caramels once set. Place in the freezer to harden for 30 minutes. Cut into squares or scoop out with a spoon and enjoy!
    Keep left overs in the fridge or freezer. If you are going to take these caramels with you traveling, be sure to keep them cool! They will melt in high humidity and hot temperatures and will be hard to eat.

    1:44 PM

    Berry coconut almond bars

    INGREDIENTS:




    For the crust
    • 5 dried dates, pitted
    • 1 cup almond butter
    • ¾ cup unsweetened coconut
    • 2 tablespoons raw honey
    • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
    • pinch of salt
    For the toppings
    • 2 teaspoon coconut milk
    • ½ cup raspberries
    • ½ cup blackberries
    • 1 tablespoon raw honey
    • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
    For the toppings 
    • 1 14 oz can of coconut milk (placed in refrigerator overnight), only use the cream on top, leave behind the coconut milk at the bottom
    • 1 tablespoon raw honey
    • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
    Instructions
    1. Place dates in food processor and pulse to break down into pieces.
    2. Then add almond butter, coconut, honey, vanilla extract and salt and pulse turn on to blend until ingredients are well combined.
    3. Line a bread pan with parchment paper, add ingredients from the food processor and press down until even throughout. Place in freezer while finishing the rest of the ingredients.
    4. Scoop out the coconut cream that has settled at the top of your canned coconut milk and place in the bowl and back in the fridge.
    5. Place 2 teaspoons of coconut milk that is at the bottom of the can, into a small saucepan over medium heat.
    6. Add raspberries, blackberries, honey and lemon juice in the pan and mix together. Let simmer for less than 5 minutes or until the berries become just slightly soft. Let cool.
    7. Now mix together the coconut cream, honey, and vanilla extract in the bowl that you placed in the fridge.
    8. Once the berries have cooled, finishing the layers. Add the coconut milk mixture on top of the crust, spread out evenly, then pour the berries on top, once again evenly.
    9. Place in the freezer for 1 or more hours to harden. Serve.
    10. Store berry bars in the freezer (otherwise the coconut milk with melt, if you put it in the fridge, trust me I learned from my mistakes ;))

    1:36 PM

    No Bake granola Bars

    Healthy Granola bars




    INGREDIENTS
    • 1 cup packed dates,or prunes 
    • 1/4 cup honey
    • 1/4 cup creamy salted natural peanut butter or almond butter
    • 1 cup roasted unsalted almonds, loosely chopped
    • 1 1/2 cups rolled oats 
    • 1/2 cup shredded unsweetened coconut.
    • optional additions: carob chips, dried unsweetened fruit, raisins....

    INSTRUCTIONS
    1. Process dates in a food processor until small bits remain (about 1 minute). It should form a “dough” like consistency. (mine rolled into a ball)
    2. Optional step: Toast your oats in a 350 degree oven for 15-ish minutes or until slightly golden brown. Otherwise, leave them raw – I just prefer the toasted flavor.
    3. Place oats, almonds and dates in a bowl – set aside.
    4. Warm honey and peanut butter in a small saucepan over low heat. Stir and pour over oat mixture and then mix, breaking up the dates to disperse throughout.
    5. Once thoroughly mixed, transfer to an 8×8 dish or other small pan lined with plastic wrap or parchment paper so they lift out easily. (A loaf pan might work, but will yield thicker bars.)
    6. Press down until uniformly flattened. Cover with parchment or plastic wrap, and let set in fridge or freezer for 15-20 minutes to harden.
    7. Remove bars from pan and chop into 10 even bars. Store in an airtight container for up to a few days. I kept mine in the freezer to keep them extra fresh, but it isn’t necessary.

    1:27 PM

    The Joys of sleeping on the floor!

    Right after Christmas we got our first sickness in over a year, the kids had croup! It was pretty mind but still required steamy showers during the night. We were up several nights in a row with coughing little ones who wanted lots of cuddles. At first i was very frustrated and just wanted to sleep. But as the days moved on, I started to enjoy sleeping on the family room floor. I got to spend some sweet time reading, telling stories, watching movies, and just relaxing with the kiddos. Meanwhile I sold our bed...yes I know, usually one would get a new one first but I was waking up to sore and tired that I wasn't sleeping on it anyway. It also made it more of a priority to get a new mattress since the old was gone{I know how to work these things}. Well, after 6 weeks of floor and couch we got a BED, yay!

    It was like honeymoon all over again :) My husband has been so sweet to help with so many things. What would I ever do without him?? I guess I wouldn't and that is why The Lord blessed me with such a great man in my life. He loves, serves, and cherishes the children and I every day!

    We also got tyler his first pet!!! he is super excited and loves on this little guy so much.




    To end this blog I want to say thank you to everyone involved in our lives. Your such a blessing to us!
    until next time, 
    Sarah