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Marinara

I think you should have two really good red sauces in your repertoire: a meat-sauce and a marinara. I know they are both red sauces. However, I use the meat-sauce for something that is hearty. I use the marinara sauce for a lighter touch. This marinara is great for pizza.

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  • 1 tbsp vegetable broth
  • 1 onion, large, diced
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • Mediterranean Seasoning
  • 6 oz. tomato paste
  • 2 26.46 oz. can/box diced tomatoes (Pomi)
  • 1 29 oz. tomato sauce
  • 2 tbsp maple syrup
  • 2 bay leaves
  • basil, garnish

Add onions, garlic, and sprinkle a generous amount of mediterranean seasoning to a large dutch oven. Cook over medium heat until onions are translucent, add vegetable broth as needed to keep onion mixture from sticking. Add tomato paste to onion mixture. Stir in tomato paste, working the paste into the onion mixture. This takes only 2-3 minutes. Add some more mediterranean seasoning. You want to layer flavor at every step.

Add diced tomatoes, tomato sauce, maple syrup, bay leaves, and some more mediterranean seasoning. Stir occasionally. Turn heat down so the sauce is at a low simmer. Simmer for 2-3 hours. Serve. Eat. Enjoy.

To store in freezer, let sauce cool and transfer to gallon ziplock bags. Make sure you get out the air, close and lay flat. Remember to date your bag, and first in is the first out.

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Thai Sauce/Dressing

This Thai Sauce/Dressing is Amazing. Actually it might be addictive. I’ve used this as a marinade, dipping sauce and dressing. It is very versatile and a good one to keep on hand in your refrigerator.

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  • 13.5 oz. coconut milk
  • 2 tbsp cilantro, fresh, chopped
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup
  • 1 1/2 tsp red thai curry paste
  • 1 tsp ginger root, finely minced
  • 1 lime, zested
  • pinch of sea salt
  • 1 tsp arrowroot

Combine all ingredients in a saucepan. Bring to a boil; reduce heat and simmer until sauce has reduced to about a 3/4 cup. Let cool and transfer to mason jar with lid. Refrigerate until needed.

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Homemade Mayonnaise

Making your own mayonnaise is so much better than buying it from the grocery store. You know exactly what is in it. It only takes a few minutes, and you can add just about any kind of flavor that sounds good to you: Roasted garlic, Chipotle, Basil. The possibilities are virtually endless.

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  • 2 egg yolks
  • 1/4 c apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tbsp dijon mustard
  • pinch of sea salt
  • 1 1/2 c of a neutral flavored oil (light olive oil, avocado oil, even half of each

Place the egg yolks, vinegar and mustard in a blender or food processor.  Turn on machine and very slowly start to drizzle oil. Slowly drizzle until the mixture starts to resemble  mayonnaise. This recipe makes about 2 cups.

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Meat Sauce

I had forgotten how good this smells when this is on the stove for a low simmer. Low and slow is what makes this so good. It lets the flavors meld and develop. This recipe makes a lot of sauce, so use what you need today and freeze the remainder for another night.

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  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1/2 large onion, diced
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • Mediterranean Seasoning
  • 1 lb. ground beef
  • 6 oz. tomato paste
  • 32.5 oz. diced tomatoes
  • 29 oz. tomato sauce
  • 2 tbsp maple sugar
  • 2 bay leaves
  • basil, garnish

In a large dutch oven over medium heat cook onion and garlic until onion is translucent. Sprinkle seasoning (about 1/2 – 1 tsp each time) over onion mixture. Add the ground beef and brown; when the ground beef is browned sprinkle more seasoning and stir. Let cook for about 2 minutes to develop the added seasoning.

Add the tomato paste and cook with the meat mixture. Work the paste into the ground beef, melding the flavors. Add diced tomatoes, tomato sauce; stir well. Add more seasoning, maple sugar and the bay leaves. Cook on low for 2-3 hours. Serve over some vegetable noodles. Butternut squash noodles pair very nicely with the meat sauce. Serve. Eat. Enjoy.

 

 

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Cashew Cream

Some of my recipes have called for cashew cream (Pumpkin Cheesecake, Blueberry-Almond Clafouti), so here is the recipe. You can use this instead of heavy cream. The possibilities are endless.

  • 1 1/2 c whole raw cashews
  • 1 1/2 c filtered water
  • 1 1/2 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • lare pinch of sea salt
  • 3/4 tsp apple cider vinegar

Place the cashews in a bowl and cover them with boiling water. Cover the bowl and soak for 4-8 hours.

Drain and rinse cashews. Transfer them to a high speed blender and add water, lemon juice, salt, and vinegar. Blend the mixture on high until very smooth. You may need to scrape down the sides of the blender midway through blending. Cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours before using or for up to 3 days.

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Caramel Sauce

I do not know anyone who does not like a caramel sauce. You really have to look at the ingredients. Most have high fructose corn syrup  or refined sugar – Yuck. It is amazing how easy this is to make. There  is no reason you can not have your caramel sauce anytime you want.

I used this sauce with some sautéed bananas to top my almond cake. Just thinking about it makes me want more cake.

  • 1/2 c coconut milk
  • 1/2 c butter/ghee
  • 1/2 c honey
  • pinch of sea salt
  • 1 tsp vanilla

In a heavy medium saucepan stir together coconut milk, butter, honey, and salt. Bring to boiling over medium-high heat, whisking occasionally. Reduce heat to medium heat. Boil gently for 10 minutes more. Remove from heat; stir in vanilla. Transfer sauce to a mason jar. Let cool for 15 minutes. Cover and chill for up to 2 weeks. Let stand at room temperature for one hour before serving.

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All-Purpose Seasoning

I like to make up different seasonings to add a new dimension to the flavor of the dish. Each mix I make gives a dish a new flavor profile, making it unique. So far I’ve shared my Mediterranean and Southwestern. Today its the quintessential All-purpose mix. Hope you enjoy the flavor.

  • 2 tbsp Italian Seasoning
  • 2 tbsp Himalayan Salt (optional)
  • 1 tbsp onion powder
  • 1 tbsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp dried mustard
  • 1/2 tsp ground pepper

Measure all ingredients into a mason jar. Shake. Sprinkle. That’s it. Try it on any protein or vegetable you like. This seasoning will transform your dish.img_0601

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Almond Meal/Flour

Yesterday, I told you not to throw out the almond pulp leftover from the almond milk you made. Now it’s time to do something with the pulp. The almond meal is great to use for toppings. One of my favorite uses for the meal is for fruit crumbles, mmm. I just might have to make one tonight. What a good idea. I’ll let you know how it turns out. Okay, back to the almond meal.

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  • almond pulp leftover from making almond milk
  • parchment paper
  • sheet pan for oven method
  • dehydrator

Set your oven to the lowest setting that is allowed. Mine only goes down to 170 degrees.

Line a sheet pan with parchment paper. Spread the almond/date pulp in a layer on top of the parchment paper. Put pan into the oven. I put it in even if it’s not at temperature. Let it roast in the oven for about an hour. Stir meal, and spread out over pan. Turn off oven and leave pan in oven.

After about an hour I check the pulp for moisture. I like it to be soft, but not wet. This is when I turn back the oven if needed, and repeat. When the meal is at the moisture level you want, transfer to a container that you can seal. I like to use mason jars.

 

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Almond Milk

This is for those that don’t do dairy, for whatever reason. I’ve tried different almond milks both homemade and commercial. I like this one the best, and it is so easy to make. Having patience is the hardest thing. This almond milk has nothing in it that is fake or bad. Yay!

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  • 1 cup of raw almonds
  • 7 c of filtered water, 3 c and 4 c
  • 1 tsp of pure vanilla extract ( I make my own)
  • stevia, liquid, to taste
  • cheese cloth or a nut milk bag

In  a container (a large mason jar works nicely) add almonds, 3 cups of filtered water. Cover container and set in refrigerator a minimum of 8 hours or up to 24 hours. This is the patience part.

Drain almonds, then place into blender or food processor.  Add remaining water (4 c) into blender/food processor. Blend on high-speed for about 4-10 minutes. This depends on the power of your blender/food processor. Mine takes about 4 minutes.

This next part will require cheese cloth or a nut milk bag. For a while I used cheese cloth, but I have to admit, the nut milk bag is much easier all around. You will also need a large bowl.

Place nut milk bag into large bowl, pour almond liquid into nut milk bag. Squeeze out liquid into large bowl. It should produce about 4 cups of almond milk. Add vanilla. Transfer to a container with a lid, and store in the refrigerator. Don’t throw away the pulp, you can use this to make toasted almond meal. Uses for the almond meal in tomorrow’s blog.

Remember to shake up milk before using, it will separate, because it doesn’t have any bad stuff (gums) in it.

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Mediterranean Seasoning

Seasoning is probably the most important thing you can do to enhance the flavors of whatever you are cooking. It’s important to season as you go.This helps to build layers and depth of flavor. This seasoning mix was the very first one I made, and is probably my favorite. It can be used on any protein, vegetable, and sauce. I basically throw it in a mason jar, shake, and sprinkle.

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  • 2 tbsp Himalayan salt (optional)
  • 2 tbsp Italian seasoning
  • 1 tbsp onion powder
  • 1 tbsp garlic granules

Like I said earlier, add all the ingredients into a mason jar, shake so all the ingredients are well incorporated. You’re done.