Tag Archive for 'dairy free'

PB&R Chocolate Chunk Cookies

I’ve been in hibernation mode. Taking a planned break to just have fun cooking and spending time with people I miss engaging with regularly. I remember as a child looking at my grandparents in awe of how many friends and acquaintances they had. The list of contacts seemed endless and my daughter made a comment over the weekend that reminded me of that feeling. I understood her perspective and the sheer awe of the network.

The last few years have taught me one thing loud and clear- spend time only with those that are worth your time. Laugh and smile and make everyday fun. There is a lot we have to be grateful for…don’t waste a minute of it wishing your life could be otherwise.

When I was sick a few years ago, one of my good childhood friends was also sick. Separated by great distances I remember he called me from his hospital bed while I was in mine. We laughed and cried and while our conditions were vastly different our mindset was indeed similar. This past week, after years of only being able to connect by phone and text, we met for a coffee, a walk, and a very long talk. While our lives are incredibly different, our views on life were nearly identical.

1) Never taking one conscious moment of any day for granted; we were given a second chance. Not everyone is lucky enough to have a second chance. How we both managed to get so very lucky I’ll never know. For now, it really doesn’t matter how or why, just that it isn’t squandered.

2) Never say no to opportunity, no matter how crazy it may seem.

3) Spending time with those you enjoy.

4) Appreciating the beauty around us.

5) The fight is better than the alternative. Fight for life. You can live every day- you can only die once.

This is a recipe I played around with this past week—low in glycemic sugar, gluten-free, and just the right hint of sweet. It was the perfect sweet cheat for a few people in my life that don’t often get to indulge in sweets! Need to make it vegan? Well, that is easy as swapping in your favorite vegan butter. We joked that these cookies are practically “free”; refined sugar-free, gluten-free, and dairy-free (if you so choose)! Need to make them nut-free? No problem, substitute in your favorite spread.

As a connoisseur of peanut butter and jelly desserts, I’ve long been searching for a recipe that would combine peanut butter and jelly in a cookie. These cookies take their flavor cues from the lunch-box favorite or at least my version of it where chocolate is included! This thick chunky cookie is not overly sweet, and if you are a fan of the PBJ (peanut butter and jelly) sandwich then it will be a recipe you want to keep close at hand. Any jam or jelly can be substituted for raspberry.

PB&R Chocolate Chunk Cookies

1/3 cup unsalted butter or vegan butter, softened

1 cup gluten free flour blend

1 tsp baking soda

½ tsp salt

2/3 cup peanut butter

1 tsp vanilla

1 cup coconut sugar

2 TBS almond milk

½ fresh raspberries, well mashed

½ cup semi-sweet chocolate chunks

Directions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.

Add butter, peanut butter, vanilla sugar, and milk into a large mixing bowl. Beat with an electric mixer until the mixture is fluffy.

Sift flour, baking soda, and salt. And combine with peanut butter mixture by hand. Then fold in chocolate chips and raspberries.

Drop walnut-size cookies (2 TBS) onto a baking sheet and flatten slightly. Bake for 12-14 minutes. Store in refrigerator.

Warm Chai Coconut Koloa Coffee Rum Mylk

chai mylk down shot

There is some sort of strange energy that prevails once the end of the year hits. It’s as if we think we have to somehow squeeze everything into those remaining months. It feels like a continuous time crunch with no apparent end in sight. Yet, somehow I am happy to have this experience this year. I’ll take every last bit of it. I don’t want to miss a beat. Last year I could only wish to be going to parties and seeing family and friends, so I am reminded to manage the swells of activity that exist and to find the fun in the little moments. Continue reading ‘Warm Chai Coconut Koloa Coffee Rum Mylk’

Pumpkin Chestnut Cornbread

pumpkin cornbread w-pumpkin

I really have no excuses. I tried to come up with one, however there is just no point. In the vein of transparency I will stick to the truth. Sometimes, despite how very well I am doing health wise, day-to-day life becomes all too consuming and I can’t pull out from under it. For me writing and recipe development is like an old friend. It is what nourishes my soul and satisfies my creativity; yet in the throws of a busy life filled with activities and obligations things can really become borderline >if not completely< overwhelming. So here I am, hat in hand, asking you to accept that I am doing the best I can to stay connected to you. Continue reading ‘Pumpkin Chestnut Cornbread’

Beetroot Not-So- Ho-Hummus

IMG_6916

Isn’t it peculiar how sometimes we perceive the direction of our lives to be mandated by a fortune cookie, horoscope, a face-up penny or a ‘sign’ like 1:11pm or or knocking on wood? The list can be seemingly endless. I can’t tell you how many tunnel wishes I’ve made over the years- saving those wishes for the REALLY BIG moments when Continue reading ‘Beetroot Not-So- Ho-Hummus’

Red Lentil Coconut Curry Soup

FullSizeRender

Life has a funny way of boosting you up when you least expect it. And that in itself is inspiring. While this was not the recipe I anticipated posting this week, I couldn’t resist. And on this day of Hearts I wanted to share the LOVE.

Last week I had noticed that a new friend of mine, Judith, was listed in an email as the primary contact for our daughter’s school fundraising soup lunch and Lenten festivities. On numerous occasions over the past four months she had helped our family throughout my diagnosis, surgery and recovery. In hopes of somehow helping her, I stepped out of my ‘recovery comfort zone’ and took a bold step by offering to make a pot of lentil soup for the lunch.

Continue reading ‘Red Lentil Coconut Curry Soup’

Nut & Grain ‘Life Changing’ Bread

The privilege of a lifetime is being who you are.— Joseph Campbell

nut grain bread close up

It’s all part of the journey. That’s what I remind myself- the good, the bad, the frustrating, the happy moments- it is all part of the journey. Life has an odd way of taking you out of the every day autopilot trance and pushing you into those – oh too real moments. Moments when you notice every vein on your hand, feel the sun’s shadow cross your face and hear a whisper of the wind as it catches your eyelashes. You know, you really just know, that you are alive.

This week, I am alive. Every vein, every breeze, every scent that crosses my path goes noticed. Continue reading ‘Nut & Grain ‘Life Changing’ Bread’

Raw Double Chocolate Nut Carmel Mousse Slice

nut slice

There is no denying the beast within. The Bowl Licker chocolate fest continues. There is not much that needs to be said about this raw chocolate slice. It fits all of my new passions- raw, vegan, chocolate, nutty, refined sugar free, gluten free, dairy free and totally satisfying. The challenge is trying to keep it from disappearing. Continue reading ‘Raw Double Chocolate Nut Carmel Mousse Slice’

Blackberry Topped Strawberry & Fig Smoothie with Cardamom Chia Pudding

IMG_9511

One of my favorite family weekends is Labor Day weekend in Mt. Shasta, as we kiss summer goodbye. I find the Blackberry Festival to be particularly charming and oh-so-reminiscent of my childhood.

I soak up the sound of music wafting through the sea of purple clad people, aptly dressed in their colored festival t-shirts, gingerly gripping their blackberry infused beers. The squealing children in the background can be heard amidst the backdrop of games like the water balloon toss, potato sack races and Continue reading ‘Blackberry Topped Strawberry & Fig Smoothie with Cardamom Chia Pudding’

Bountiful Fig Bowl

white fig bowl single

Looking for a work/life balance? I know I am. And in my quest for balance and enlightenment I am always excited when I come across antidotes in magazines or realize observations from my everyday life. Regardless of where I pull my inspiration from, I am always appreciative that these moments invite me in to take stock of where I am. I am not always in a good place, but I try to pull myself above it.

I recently read an article on the healing attributes of kindness. My ‘ah-ha’ moment was Continue reading ‘Bountiful Fig Bowl’

Fudgiest Peanut Butter Smoothie

PBM 3 shot .JPG

This week’s episode of ‘I am not cooking!‘ is brought to you by my faithful blender.

I am a newly converted blending addict. There is no way around it. No matter how much I dream about a nice hot meal I keep on blending. Fortunately it is summer so it’s slightly less noticeable. >she tells herself in affirmation< Continue reading ‘Fudgiest Peanut Butter Smoothie’