Sunday, May 20, 2012

Cucumber Salsa

This is an interesting little recipe that I stumbled upon. My little helper has volunteered to show you which ingredients you will need:

1 Cucumber
1-2 Avocados
1 Lemon
1/2 Green bell pepper
2T. Fresh mint leaves, chopped
2-3 Scallions or green onions
6 oz. feta cheese (but goat cheese would be tasty, too)
Garlic Chives (see previous post), or minced garlic
1t. each: Salt, Pepper, Cumin
Your favorite hot sauce, to taste
Cherry tomatoes, halved (optional)
Fresh corn (optional)

Chop it all up and mix it together. Stick it in the fridge for about an hour to give the flavors a chance to blend.

This makes a really good summer salsa for chips or tacos, but you can also just eat it as a salad (maybe add another cucumber if you're doing a salad). The thing I like about making salsas is that you can adjust the recipes to make it however you like it. If you like more avocado, add more avocado. If you don't like bell peppers or would rather have a red one, make the change. So feel free to go crazy with this recipe.

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Garlic Chives?

So you know how you have the whole garlic bulb, but you don't use the whole thing before the middle cloves get those green sprouts that pop out? Well I do. And I typically end up throwing those away. That's not going to happen any more. Here's what you can now do with the unwanted, overgrown garlic cloves:

1. Dig a little hole in the ground that's about 1 inch deep.
2. Put the clove in the ground and cover it with dirt.
3. Water every day or so and wait for little sprouts to pop up.

Voilà! You have your self some tasty garlic plants that you can use like you would use chives. Put them in a salad, or mashed potatoes, sauteé them with some broccoli and lemon then top it with some freshly grated Parmesan. Or use them in the salsa/salad I will be posting about later. So many options, so tasty.

One thing to remember: These won't continuously sprout, so you'll have to replace them every so often. But seeing as how my garlic clove problem is recurring, this is no problem for me, and hopefully not a problem for you either.

Thursday, May 3, 2012

"Breakfast" Cookies

Okay, I found this recipe in a magazine and tweaked it a little bit. They were gone before I had a chance to take a picture, so I'm using the picture from the magazine (I'll make them again soon - probably on Monday -and repost the pics. Update...these are the real thing now).

Anywho, the magazine labeled these as "Breakfast Bites," only they taste just like the Little Debbie Oatmeal Cream Pies to me - they just don't taste as fake and they are a thousand times better for you. Here is the recipe. Try it and let me know if you think they're better than Little Debbies:

1 C. White whole-wheat flour (or 3/4 whole wheat and 1/4 white)
1/2 t. baking powder
1/2 t. baking soda
1 t. pumpkin pie spice
1 t. cinnamon
1/4 t. salt
1/2 c. canola oil
1/2 c. packed brown sugar
1/4 c. granulated sugar
1 egg + 1 egg white
1 c. old fashioned oats
1/3 wheat germ or flax seed or combination of both
1+ c. finely shredded carrots (3 small-medium)
1/2 c. currants (like little raisins)

8 oz. (1 block) reduced fat cream cheese
2 T. Maple syrup
2 T. Powdered sugar

1. Preheat oven to 350°F and line 2 cookie sheets with parchment paper
2. In a small bowl, stir together first 6 dry ingredients. Set aside.
3. In a large bowl, combine oil, sugars and eggs - mix to combine. Add the rest of the ingredients (including the dry ingredients) and stir until a ball of yummy cookie dough goodness forms. Seriously, this is some of the best cookie dough I've ever tasted.
4. Drop rounded dough (a heaping Tablespoon sized) on to the baking sheets, then slightly press down with your palm. Cook for 10-12 minutes until cookies begin to brown. Let stand on the cookie sheet for a minute then move to cooling rack.

5. For filling: cream together the cream cheese, maple syrup, and powdered sugar for 2 or so minutes with a mixer. Using a rubber spatula, place the filling into a plastic bag. Cut the corner and squeeze filling onto cookies, then make your sandwiches.

6. Wrap individual cookies in plastic wrap (or baggies) and refrigerate. Try not to eat them all in one day.