Pure Happiness and More (Eggnog)

October 29, 2010

Pure Happiness

We’ve been sick. Ever since we changed our eating habits almost 2 years ago, we just don’t get sick very often. And when we do, we’re only sick for a day or two. Maybe I was patting myself on the back a little too much for our greatly improved immune systems. I dunno. All I know is that I got sick and this thing has hung on for over 2 weeks. And worse, now my husband has it. I know it’s not just us. My son has had it for 4 weeks now and my stepson had it for 3 weeks. Whatever “it” is, it’s a hanger-on-er. And I’m ready for it to leave. One of the worst things about being sick (right behind feeling so crummy), inevitably we fall off our food plan wagon in one way or another. This “sick” hit right in the middle of our great grain(less) experiment. So, on a day when I was really not feeling well and had no supper plan whatsoever, I broke down and made beans and rice. At least the rice was brown, even if it wasn’t soaked. And at least the beans were organic, even if they came in a can. It still beat the drive thru by miles and miles. Ever since that day, I haven’t done so well with the whole grain-less thing. We had oatmeal for breakfast one morning (it WAS soaked) and for dinner one night I made tostadas. I had ordered these sprouted corn tortillas from the food coop (telling myself it was for company food – wink, wink).
sprouted corn tortillas
Forgetting I had some homemade tallow in the fridge, I fried the tortillas in coconut oil till they were crispy. Spread some refried beans on them, topped with some raw milk cheese (flavored with garlic and herbs), and some chopped lettuce and tomato. I have to admit, it was pretty yummy and a real hit with the grandkids.
tostadas
For the most part though, I’ve tried to stick with what we were doing. One thing I do when I need to eat something and don’t feel like cooking is to have some raw milk cheese and crispy cashews or pecans.
cashews and cheese
Another thing I finally tried after talking about it for a year or more is making homemade eggnog. Who knew it was THAT easy?! It makes for a great pick-me-up when I don’t feel like eating, much less cooking. I just take two egg yolks…
2 egg yolks
one cup of raw milk, one teaspoon of raw honey, hit it with the immersion blender for about 20 seconds, sprinkle with some nutmeg and enjoy!
yummy eggnog
I’ve tried adding homemade vanilla and a couple of other things, but I think I like the simple version best. However, the most awesome thing about this eggnog is that my grandchildren love it! I’m so thrilled to get some raw milk and fresh eggs into them! I had stooped to buying some chocolate milk syrup at the health food store in an attempt to get them to drink the milk. I mean, it was working, but how great is them drinking it without the syrup?!! In fact, my grandson instantly dubbed it “Pure Happiness.” He’s so awesome! 🙂

Wanna know what I think is pure happiness?

This:

Devin and Kaitlyn

This post is part of Fight Back Fridays blog carnival. You can also find me on Facebook. Just click on the link above, right hand side that says, “Follow Me on Facebook!”

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GF (Nut Flour) Bread

October 8, 2010

Grain-free slice

I’m going to a money-management seminar tomorrow and was trying to figure out what to take for lunch, when I remembered this grain-free bread I used to make quite a bit before spelt came into my life. I used to make it with almond flour, but since I only had 1 cup of almond flour, I had to sub with hazelnut flour. (I used 1 cup of each) Hazelnut is cheaper right now than almond flour; my money management skills must be on the right track!
Of course, if I really wanted to use the best ingredients, I would have ground up my crispy pecans and used them, but couldn’t muster up the extra energy today. Curious about “crispy nuts?” This is a good blog post about them, as well as this one. When I dug up the recipe, I was happy to see how many eggs it took. Our egg and dairy farm has an abundance of eggs and I keep buying a bunch, so I can give them to my grown kids to take home. (They’re so cheap and nutritious) However, if I’m not watching, my spare fridge ends up with an over-abundance of eggs. This recipe will take care of that in a hurry!

Nut Flour Bread

2 cups nut flour (almond, hazelnut, pecan, or a mix)
1/2 cup coconut flour
1/2 cup grated sharp cheddar cheese
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon all purpose seasoning
1 teaspoon gelatin (flavorless kind, optional)
1/4 tsp sea salt
10 eggs
1 1/2 sticks of butter (1 1/2 cups)
Extra butter for pan

Preheat oven to 350o. Grease a loaf pan with butter and set aside. Measure butter, cut into slices and melt, either in the preheating oven or on top.
butter melting
In one bowl, add nut flour(s), coconut flour, baking powder, salt, seasoning, gelatin if using, and mix well.
Ingredients
I love Mountain Rose Herbs All Purpose Seasoning!
All Purpose Seasoning
In a separate bowl, whisk eggs until well mixed.
Pastured eggs
(Pastured, of course!)
Slowly add melted butter, whisking continuously. When well blended, add to flour mixture, whisking until all is blended.
Egg and flour mixtures
The batter will be very moist. Spoon into greased loaf pan.
Bread batter
Bake for 40-45 minutes or until very golden brown outside and toothpick (or knife) inserted in center comes out clean. (It won’t be clean and dry, because of the butter, but it will NOT be goopy in any way) Remove pan from oven and cool for 10 minutes.
Bread cooling
Remove loaf from pan and continue to cool on a wire rack.
bread cooling
Refrigerate overnight to reduce crumbling. (I put mine in a gallon size Baggie) Of course, you can cut a slice while it’s still warm and slather some grass-fed butter all over it. (See picture at top of post) Just in case it doesn’t already have enough. Butter, that is. 😉

Note: I used to use parmesan cheese in a plastic container. You know, the powdery kind? Not sure how good that is, but if you have a good source, that would work well. The Kerrygold sharp cheddar I used worked fine. Also, you can bake this in a 12-cup muffin pan, distributing evenly. Don’t remember how long I baked them, but I would guess start checking them at 20 minutes. These make nice little rolls for things like salmon or egg salads.

This post is part of Fight Back Fridays blog carnival.


GF Pizza

October 5, 2010

gf pizza

Continuing on our gluten/grain-free journey, I revisited a recipe from my low carb past. I was making spelt flour pizza for the grandkids and thinking of what I could make for us with some leftover ground beef, when I decided to see if I could remember how to make this grain-free pizza. It was pretty tasty. Don’t know what I’d do without my milk, cream, and cheese, for sure! Next time I might tweak it a little. I think one of the key things is to let the “crust’ cool completely before assembling the pizza. It seemed a little quiche-like, which I didn’t remember. Maybe I’ll figure it out by the time I attempt it again!

GF Pizza

Ingredients for crust:

1/2 cup cream cheese (I used homemade from raw milk)
Three medium eggs (pastured, of course)
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/3 cup heavy raw cream
1/2 teaspoon oregano
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
2 cups grated cheese of choice (I used Kerrygold sharp cheddar)
Olive oil to oil the pan(s)
1/2 cup pizza sauce (I used Muir Glen + a little homemade ketchup)
Grated cheese and assorted toppings

Directions:

Preheat oven to 375o. Oil a 13 x 9-inch baking dish or (2) 9-inch pie plates. Beat cream cheese and eggs until smooth (although using my homemade cream cheese it never gets truly smooth). Add heavy cream, Parmesan and spices; combine well. Add remaining grated cheese until just mixed. Pour (scrape?) into baking dish or evenly into the 2 pie plates.

Bake at 375o for about 30 minutes or to desired brownness. Let cool completely.

I let the other one get a little darker, which turned out better, but didn’t get a picture.

Prior to assembling pizza, I loosened the crust all the way around the edges, which may or may not have helped, but the slices came out easily.
To assemble pizza spread with pizza sauce, then add grated cheese and toppings of choice. I used the leftover ground beef (grass-fed, always!) and the last of the bell peppers from the garden. I went a little heavy on the ground beef on the second one and would have liked more toppings (onion, black olives, etc), but we were running late, so I made do.
ready to bake
Return to oven until cheese is melted and toppings are warm. Enjoy!
Tasty!

This post is part of Hearth ‘n Soul Blog Hop and Tuesday Twister.


GF Green Enchiladas

October 2, 2010

GF green enchiladas

We’re full swing into our gluten-free diet and for me, grain-free. My husband is almost grain-free, except for the little bit of oats (soaked and dried, as per Nourishing Traditions) in his “Thinking Man’s Breakfast.” It’s been a challenge at times, but well worth it, as my husband’s blood sugar levels are steadily dropping into a normal range and I’ve lost a few pounds. I’ve been reading some interesting things about the possible connection between food allergies and genetically modified foods.

A lot of stuff from my low carb days is coming back to me. I’ve managed to sub almond flour in things like salmon patties and meatloaf. I made coconut flour pancakes for breakfast one morning. And, I remembered what I used to do when tortillas were off the menu. It’s really very easy and we think the taste is comparable. Of course, the longer you go without grains, the better the faux stuff tastes! Anyway, I use a very basic crepe. In fact, it’s so basic, it’s simply eggs. (Need I even say pastured?!) I call them fauxtillas (pronounced, foh tee uhs).
🙂
I figure 2 fauxtillas per egg and, for us, 2 fauxtillas is a serving. Put them in a bowl and whisk them well. For added flavor, sprinkle a little ground cumin and garlic powder into them. Oil, then heat a small frying pan on medium heat till hot. Put approximately 2 Tbs of eggs into pan and immediately swirl it all around the bottom of the pan until the bottom (only) is covered. This will be like a super duper thin omelet. It will cook fairly fast, so watch it closely. Once the top has little bubbles and seems somewhat dry, but before bottom starts to turn brown, carefully slide it out of the pan onto a plate.
Crepe
Continue until all egg is cooked, stacking the fauxtillas off-center (not directly on top of one another) to help prevent sticking.

Take a fauxtilla (is that name becoming obnoxious?) and lay it on a plate. Put a layer of green enchilada sauce with hamburger meat (grass-fed, of course!) in the center of the crepe. (Better?)
Sprinkle grated cheese on top of the meat, carefully fold each side of the crepe over it and turn, so that the seam side is down.
filled fauxtilla
Take another crepe and lay on plate:
Second crepe
More meat in the center:
More meat
More cheese:
More cheese
Fold and turn, then cover these burrito-looking things with more green enchilada sauce and a sprinkle (or two!) of cheese. You can also add in some diced onion if you like, but I was rushing. Alternately, you can lay these in a baking dish, cover with sauce and cheese, and bake at 350o for about 15 minutes, rather than fixing them individually. Garnish with salad or sides of your choice, like faux Spanish rice made with grated cauliflower, and enjoy!

GF green enchilada 2

This post is part of Fight Back Fridays blog carnival.