Thursday, October 28, 2010

Napa Cabbage Lettuce Wraps

Napa Cabbage Lettuce Wraps with Glazed Tempeh and Spicy Mayonnaise

I LOVE lettuce wraps!  They're crunchy, salty, messy, and delicious...kinda like an Asian version of the Sloppy Joe, where you know it's good if it's running down your hand!  My sister, Summer, gave me her lettuce wrap recipe, got me hooked, and then I came up with a few alterations of my own!  Thanks sis!  They're so good, that even my husband (a notorious meat and potatoes kinda guy), will eat these and not complain about it!  If you don't try these, you're just plain crazy!

The Spicy Mayo:

4 T. vegenaise mayonnaise
1 T. sriracha (you can find this in the Asian section of your market)

Now, I like things to have a kick, so if you're sensitive to spice, start with 1 t., taste it, and work your way up from there.

The filling:

2 T. sesame oil
1 T. lime juice
2 t. fresh ginger (the fresh ginger in the tube is okay too...sometimes I get lazy and use it)
4 T. low sodium soy sauce
4 T. agave nectar
1 T. garlic powder
1 t. ground ginger powder
1 can sliced water chestnuts, drained and chopped into rough pieces
1 bag of organic broccoli slaw

Whisk together in a saute pan, (except the chestnuts and slaw) and bring to a boil.  Simmer on med/high heat for 1 minute, and add water chestnuts.  Reduce heat to medium and saute for a couple of minutes, so the flavor soaks in. (1-2 minutes)

Add entire bag of Broccoli Slaw and simmer until slaw is softened, yet still crunchy.  (3-5 minutes, depending on your preference)


You can add fresh chopped pineapple to this's really good!

While your slaw is sauteing, cut the bottom of the Napa Cabbage off, and gently rinse leaves, leaving whole.  Spin or pat dry, and set aside for assembly.

Here is your order of assembly:

Napa Cabbage
Slaw filling 
Spicy Mayo

Optional toppings:

Asian Glazed Tempeh (recipe is in another blog post)
Mung Bean Sprouts
Sliced Green Onions
La Choy Rice Noodles
Chopped peanuts or cashews (unsalted for both)
Sesame Seeds

Find some frozen vegetarian spring rolls to complete this meal, and revel in the fact that you're eating a meal that is centered around so many veggies!! (That tastes better than amazing...PLUS you made it!)

Asian Glazed Tempeh

Asian Glazed Tempeh!

"Coconut Macaroon" Energy Balls

Oh man these are good!!  Here's a warning: if you have problems with self-control, it is not advised that you use this recipe!  This is my healthy version of a coconut macaroon, designed because I'm pregnant and I was craving one...however...with pregnancy, you gain weight for just looking at something like that, so I decided to come up with a healthy alternative!

1 T. coconut oil
1/2 c. agave nectar

Put in a pan and bring to a boil.  Boil for a minute or 2, but be careful not to burn!  Set aside to cool somewhat.

1/4 c. walnuts
1/4 c. sunflower seeds
1/4 c. rye flakes (looks like oatmeal, but made from rye)
1/2 c. raw, shredded coconut, unsweetened

Use a little food processor or a spice grinder (coffee grinder) to grind these ingredients into a "powder".  (It won't be completely smooth like flour, but it will no longer resemble whole bits of food either.)

Place in a bowl along with:

1/4 c. raw, shredded coconut
4 T. cocoa powder
4 T. ground flax seeds
2 T. whole wheat flour

Mix together with the "sauce" you boiled above, and mix into a stiff dough. 


2 T. vegan chocolate chips (I use the "Enjoy Life" brand, because they're amazing and tiny...perfect for this)

Mix and let rest for a minute or so, while you grab some aluminum foil to put them on.

Take a teaspoon of the dough and roll into a ball, and repeat with the remaining amount of dough.

I got 15 teaspoon-sized balls. 

If you don't want to wait until the balls set up at room temp, put them in the fridge...and if you're REALLY impatient (like I was), put them in the freezer for a few minutes!!

I also flattened some of them into "cookies" and baked them at 350 for 7 minutes.  Once cooled, they were great little cookies!

Note:  Agave doesn't spike your blood glucose levels like most other sweeteners, and I've paired them with the protein of nuts to stabilize it even more, as well as keep you fuller longer!  Rye is known to give energy, and the benefits of coconut are becoming extremely popular as well!  Chocolate is a known mood enhancer...and the combination of all these ingredients is something you can "trick" your kids into eating as something healthy, veiled as a dessert or treat!

Green Julia Smoothie

This is the most gorgeous smoothie you will ever see!  I ordered this smoothie when I was out with my sister and her husband, because the ingredients were so intriguing...let's just say this...if you need to trick your kids into eating spinach, here's the secret...put it in their smoothie!  Trust me, it tastes so incredible, that you'll be stealing drinks of theirs...I guarantee it!

This recipe will make about a full blender of this smoothie, and between my 2 girls and me, we drink it all!  If you're just doing this for yourself, cut the recipe in half, and have one today and one tomorrow...OR drink one now, and one later!!

What you need:

-2 bananas
-1 can of Thai Organic coconut milk (I don't get the reduced fat, because healthy fats are essential for good brain development, skin, hair, and cell management in your body...if you feel that you get plenty of good fats in your diet, feel free to use the reduced fat version of this milk, HOWEVER, it will be nowhere near as creamy!)
-1/2 c.-1 c. orange juice (something that's 100% juice, no sugar added)
-1 large bag of fresh spinach

Note:  Optional add ins that I use on a regular basis are:  ground raw sunflower seeds (for vitamin e and iron), 1/2 c. raw shredded coconut, 1/2 c. old fashioned oats, 1/8 c. flax seed, or any other kind of frozen fruit you may want to add.

I have actually weaned my kids off of the OJ in the smoothie, but if you're not picky about your kids having juice, that's cool too!  I just figured, if they'll drink it without the juice in it...that makes it even healthier!  Instead, I'll throw in 1 T. of agave nectar to sweeten it.

What to do:

Fill your blender with all of the ingredients except the spinach.  Put as much spinach in the blender as you can, and pulse until almost smooth.  Then add MORE spinach...until the blender is filled.  Pulse, and blend until smooth.  Your smoothie should be a gorgeous green color, and taste like an Orange Julius! (But WAY healthier, and no added sugar!)

Chill in the fridge, or serve over ice if you like your smoothies cold, but it's not necessary!

An idea:

When I have leftover smoothies, instead of throwing them away, I turn them into popsicles for the girls, and they think it's so cool when they get to have a popsicle whenever they want! (Not knowing that their popsicle actually is packed with vitamins, fiber, and minerals...AND spinach!!!)

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Sweet Potato Lasagna

I know, I know...this sounds like a weird combination, and I was skeptical at first too, when my mom told me she had made a lasagna with sweet potatoes!  I almost didn't try it, because I just couldn't imagine any possible way that it would taste good...boy am I glad that I listened to my mom!!  (Do mothers ever lose their knack for being right?!)

The lasagna recipe is really simple (I actually cheat and use the meijer organic sauce instead of making my own! I like the garlic flavor or basil the best, but use whatever your favorite sauce is (read the label first tho, just to make sure it's not loaded with junk!))

You'll need:

8x8 pan
-1 box of lasagna noodles (I use the gluten free brown rice noodles, but whole wheat is fine too)
-2 jars of spaghetti sauce
-3 large sweet potatoes
-1 8oz package of sliced baby bella mushrooms (or your favorite ones)
-fresh spinach
-garlic powder (not salt)
-dried basil, oregano, and thyme
-panko bread crumbs
-extra virgin olive oil
-nutritional yeast (optional)

This is what you do:

Preheat oven to 425

-Peel sweet potatoes and cut into chunks (doesn't matter what size, but the smaller they are, the less time they'll take to roast!)
-Place them on a baking sheet, drizzle with olive oil, and sprinkle garlic powder, basil, oregano, and thyme...I like a LOT of flavor, so I go heavy on the herbs...probably 2 T of the garlic powder, and 3 T of each of the dried herbs.
-Toss the potatoes in the oil and herbs to coat evenly, and put in the oven to roast for 30-40 mins (or until soft enough to mash)
-When they come out of the oven, mash them with a potato masher, or if you don't have that, a fork will do just fine...they don't have to be fact, if there are a few chunks, it adds texture :)
-Chop mushrooms up (you can actually put them in whole if you want...I just like them smaller because they distribute easier!)

-In an 8x8 pan, start by pouring enough sauce in the bottom to coat it (this keeps the noodles from sticking)
-Layer noodles, uncooked (I think you can get 4 in if you overlap a bit)
-Put mashed sweet potatoes on noodles
-Then a good thick layer of spinach (it wilts a ton when cooked)
-Then mushrooms
-Pour sauce on top and repeat the layer again, beginning with noodles
-End with sauce on top (you'll use about 1 1/2 jars of sauce)

-Cover and bake at 350 until the noodles are cooked...I actually over-baked mine, so I'd check it after 1 hr...and then maybe every 30 mins after that!

Now you're going to make the "cheese topping":

1 c. of the Panko bread crumbs
1 T. each:
garlic powder
1 t. salt
pepper to taste
1/8 c. nutritional yeast (optional)'ll find this in a health food store, usually with the supplements or protein's super high in B vitamins and minerals, and gives things a "cheesy" taste. I also use it in smoothies, vegan french toast, and the mac n "cheese" I make for the there are other applications for it if you choose to get it :)

Put that all into a bowl, and drizzle with enough olive oil to get the spices to stick to the crumbs...taste them, if you like the flavor, leave them, if you think it needs more flavor, add more :)

Sprinkle this on the top of your lasagna once it's baked, and place it under the broiler on low until you get a nice golden look to it.

That's it!

Seems like a lot of steps, but it's really quite simple.

Make sure you let the lasagna rest for a bit before serving, so that all the juices absorb and it's not runny!

Here's a great accompaniment to the lasagna...homemade garlic toast!

If you can find the Arnie's brand Multigrain French Loaf, that's be your best bet...otherwise, any type of good multigrain french loaf will do!

Cut lengthwise, and spread generously with extra virgin olive oil.
Sprinkle 1 T of the following on EACH half:
garlic powder
italian seasonings (if you have it, if not, that's fine too)
And then 1 t of salt on each half

Bake for about 5 mins on 350, until the bottom is crispy, then finish under the low broiler until top is golden :)

Vegan Chili

Chili is one of the all time best comfort foods in my opinion!  It's warm, hearty, and has a full, well-rounded flavor that makes your mouth water just thinking of it!  Nothing says fall or winter better than a nice, big bowl of chili, and a side of corn bread!  This is a blend of 2 amazing recipes, from 2 amazing mom, who has been a HUGE inspiration for my love of kitchen (and who also has some of the BEST recipes known to man!)...and my sister, who has been my counterpart in learning to cook as healthy as possible!  Between the 3 of us, we are always trying something new, and then passing it on!

1 med white or yellow onion, chopped
1 full head of fresh garlic, minced (or chopped if you don't have a mincer)
1 fresh jalapeno pepper, chopped finely (if you don't like spicy, skip this, if you REALLY like spicy, leave the seeds in it!)
1-2 c. carrots, sliced (or just buy a bag of shredded carrots and throw them in if you hate cutting carrots as much as I do!!)

Saute this in a little bit of oil with 1 package of low sodium taco seasoning or low sodium chili seasoning, until onions are transparent.

1 large jug of V8 (whichever variety you prefer...I typically do the low sodium or the spicy!)
2 large can of petite diced tomatoes
1 can of chili beans (don't drain them, just dump them all in)
1 can of kidney beans (drain them and rinse them before adding)
1 can of black beans (drained and rinsed as well)
1/4 c. agave nectar
1/2 t. cumin
2 T. chili powder
1 T. garlic powder

You can leave the chili as is, and let it simmer for a while on low, stirring occasionally so the bottom doesn't burn...OR you could add some or all of these things:

2-3 zucchini, chunked
1-2 c. of frozen corn
2 c. prepared barley or brown rice

I like mine with a lot of veggies, and when I don't make it too spicy, the kids will eat it this way too!

Top with fresh cut avocado, green onions, tortilla chip pieces, and a dollop of vegan cream cheese (Tofutti Better Than Cream Cheese).

Serve with corn bread muffins with the following substitutions:

whole wheat flour
agave nectar
coconut oil or applesauce
almond milk

(buy the cornmeal, not the pre-boxed mixes, because they tend to add a lot of sugar to those...otherwise, just follow the recipe on the bag)

Try adding in:
1/4 c. chopped jalapenos
1/4 c. thawed, frozen corn

Banana Muffins

Having a batch of muffins (healthy ones) around the house can be a lifesaver!  Instead of grabbing for empty calories when you're hungry and on the go, you can satisfy your hunger with these moist, sweet, hearty muffins, and give your body a boost of high quality energy that will last!

Preheat your oven to 350

3-4 extremely ripe bananas
1/2 c. agave nectar, sucanat, or coconut granules
1 "egg" (1 eggs worth of egg replacer)
1/3 c. applesauce (or coconut oil if you don't want them low fat)

Mash all these ingredients together until they are well incorporated.

1 t. baking soda
1 1/2 t. baking powder
1/2 t. salt (I typically just skip the salt, but do what you want!)
1 T. cinnamon
1 1/2 c. flour (Bobs Red Mill 10 grain or King Arthurs White Whole Wheat)

Mix until the dry ingredients are evenly distributed, but don't'll kill the rising powers of the baking soda and powder!

Load into greased muffin tins...your batter will be pretty thick, don't worry, it's supposed to be!  This recipe should make 12 muffins.

Bake for 20 mins, or until a toothpick to the center of one comes out clean. Leave in the muffin tins for 10 mins before removing them and switching them to a cooling rack.

Note:  Sometimes I add chocolate chips to these :)  When I do, I usually cut the sweetener in half, so just 1/4 c. of sweetener, and then do 1/2 c. of chocolate chips (I use the "Enjoy Life" brand)...if you want to keep them as healthy as possible, but you still want a little chocolate fix, omitting some of the sweetener is a great way to get the best of both worlds!

Angel Biscuits

These little babies are the perfect accompaniment to so many things!  They are no knead, no rise, no fuss rolls that have an incredible flavor!  You're going to LOVE having this recipe on hand!

Preheat the oven to 350

5 c. flour (King Arthurs white whole wheat or Bobs Red Mill 10 grain flour)
1/4 c. agave nectar
1 T. baking powder
1 t. baking soda
1 t. salt
1 T. yeast
1 c. coconut oil (or 1/2 coconut oil, 1/2 applesauce)...softened
2 c. buttermilk

To make buttermilk, take the 2 c. of almond milk and add 2 t. vinegar, or 2 T. of lemon juice.  Let set for a few minutes, until you see it sort of curdle...gross I know!

Mix all of the dry ingredients together, then add the wet.  Stir until it's all mixed together, but don't overdo it...shape into balls, or just drop onto a greased pan.

Bake for 12-15 minutes...Super easy...Super Delicious!


I got this recipe from my friend, Jolene, and seriously ate it every day for over a year!  It makes a lot, so you can portion it and freeze it if you don't think you'll eat it all in time...or just keep it in your fridge, it actually will keep in there for a while!  If you want an energy-packed way to start your day, make this, you'll love it!

Preheat the oven to 350

1/2 t. salt (this can actually be omitted if you want)
3/4 c. coconut oil
1 c. agave nectar
1 t. cinnamon (I add about 1 T...because I LOVE cinnamon!...Nutmeg would also be good!)

Bring to a light boil and simmer for a few minutes

Remove from heat and add 1 t. of vanilla.

4 c. old fashioned oats...not quick cook
1 c. barley flakes (looks just like oatmeal, but made from barley)
1 c. wheat bran
1 c. oat bran
1/2 c. wheat germ

Optional add ins:
raw shredded coconut (HIGHLY recommended!  Coconut helps your thyroid function properly, AND helps your even though it's high in fat, it doesn't make you fat!)
walnuts (chopped)
almonds (slivered or sliced)
sunflower seeds
flax seeds (ground up)
dried fruit (no sugar the label!)

*Note:  all nuts and seeds and ingredients are to be used in raw, unsalted forms, as unprocessed as you can find them.  Visit your Health Food store and get all the ingredients there...this will help you make the healthiest granola possible!

You're going to mix the glaze with the cereal part, and whatever add ins you chose, make sure it's all coated evenly...the glaze should be pretty sticky.

Spread over 2, heavily sprayed 9x13 pans, and bake for 30-40 minutes...checking often, and stirring so that it doesn't burn. When it's done,  cool completely in the pans, stirring occasionally so it doesn't all stick together. 

Done!  Now you have about 22 c. worth of breakfast!

Note:  Although this is very healthy, it is very high in fat...good fats...but try to limit yourself to having only 1/2 c.-1 c. in the morning, so your body has a chance to burn it off throughout the day.  It's easy to want to keep eating it, because it's so darn good!  Like I said above, I ate this every morning for over a year, and never gained 1 lb (without working out either) although it's loaded with calories and fats, they are high quality, and your body will recognize the difference between this and a donut!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

"Beef" Stroganoff

I LOVED my mom's recipe for this growing up (back in the days where a "fat gram" and a "calorie" were as foreign as "paying bills" and "laundry techniques"!)...I have managed to come up with a recipe that brings all of the comfort that this dish has to offer, without ALL of the guilt that follows!  Just so you know...this isn't one of my figure conscious recipes, although it is way better for you than the original!  (This is one of those "impress your husband meals")

7 oz of mushrooms (I used 1/2 shitake and 1/2 portabella), chunked largely
1 pkg of Smart Strips, Beef (you can certainly omit this and just add more mushrooms), chop into smaller pieces
1 Lg yellow or white onion chopped

Saute in 2 T "butter" (read the blog on substitutions) until onions are translucent, and mushrooms are browned.  1 T of garlic powder and fresh cracked pepper to taste.

6 T Marsala cooking wine and simmer for a few minutes
1 c. unsweetened almond milk
1 t. ground mustard
5 T.  Tofutti Better Than Sour Cream
3 T. Tofutti Better Than Cream Cheese (the yellow one, not the white)
2 T. Garlic powder (not salt)
2 T. fresh crack pepper
2 T. Vegenaise...vegan mayonaise (not the nasoya brand)

Simmer for 15-20 minutes, until it gets a tad thicker.

Boil a box of Eden Organic Garlic Parsley Noodles for 2 minutes, strain, rinse, and add to sauce until the noodles have finished cooking. 

I like things to have an extra kick to them, so I added a dash of cayenne pepper to it too!

If your mixture gets too thick, you can add a little more almond milk and a little more mayo!

Serve with some mashed potatoes, a side of steamed broccoli, and homemade garlic toast...YUM...I think I'll be making this again, very soon!

Note:  Homemade garlic bread is impressive to those who never make it, and WAY better for you than the salty, buttery slab of bread that you'll get most's how I make mine:

I ALWAYS buy the Arnie's Brand Multigrain French Loaf...why?  Because it tastes amazing, the texture is unbeatable, and they don't use any preservatives in their baked goods!  If you don't have Arnies breads in your grocery store, I'm'll just have to buy any loaf of whole grain french bread you can find!

Preheat oven to 350

Cut loaf lengthwise so you have 2 long halves
Spread liberally (and I mean slather) coconut oil or olive oil on both halves (obviously on the inside...just in case you were wondering)
1 T of garlic powder on each half (or 2 to each half depending on how much you like garlic!)
1 1/2 t of salt on each half (use sea salt if you can...the kind where you can actually see the minerals in it)
fresh cracked black pepper to taste

Bake for 5 mins and then finish on low under the broiler, until the top gets a little brown

It's that easy!  Now, if you're feeling fancy, here are some ways that you can change that up:

1 T oregano to each side
1 T basil to each side
1 T italian seasonings to each side
a sprinkle of cayenne pepper (for spicy bread)
a sprinkle of crushed red peppers (for mildly spicy bread)

you can do all of these at once, along with the original recipe up above, or just do 1 at a's up to you!

Pumpkin Bread

Tis the season for all things pumpkin!  Here's a really simple recipe that I made the other day!  (Trust me, you'll want to double it!)

Preheat oven to 350

1/2 c. coconut oil (or applesauce)
1 1/2 c. coconut granules or sucanat

Cream together until sucanat or coconut granules are dissolved

8 oz pumpkin...add to the above and mix

2 T egg replacer...unprepared (don't premix it in the water like you normally would, just toss it in)...mix with the above

Mix together in a separate bowl:

1 1/2 c. flour (I used the Bobs Red Mill 10 grain flour)
1 1/2 t. baking soda + 1/4 t. more
3/4 t. baking powder
1 t. cinnamon (I actually used 2, because I LOVE cinnamon!)
1 t. nutmeg
1 t. pumpkin pie spice (optional, but that's what I used, otherwise, you can just omit it)

Add the dry ingredients to the wet, mix, but don't over mix.  Your batter will be very thick...don't worry (because I did!)  It all turns out in the end.

Grease 1 bread loaf pan with Pam spray, load it up, and bake at 350 for approx 60 mins!  (Toothpick the center to check "done-ness"...if it's clean, take the loaf out, and let rest for 10 mins before removing from pan onto the cooling rack.  If the toothpick doesn't come out clean, put the bread back in for a few more mins and re-check it!)

A quick and easy spread that would be amazing for this once it's sliced up:

1/4 c.  Tofutti Better than Cream Cheese (get the one in the yellow container, not the white, because the white one has hydrogenated oils...bad!)
2 T of Agave Nectar
1 T cinnamon (or 2 if you really like cinnamon!)

*taste this, if you want it sweeter, add more agave, if you want more cinnamon, add can't really mess this up!

mix all together and spread liberally! (Note: if there are leftovers, this is also amazing on bagels in the morning!)

A Little Background on Healthy Eating

I'm not a doctor or a nutritionist, but I've done some research on things that are healthy and definitely not!  Here is a list of things that you'll probably not find in my recipes (unless they're hidden deep into some product in an insignificant amount):

white sugar
brown sugar
high fructose corn syrup (or as it's now called "corn sugar")
white flour
hydrogenated/partially hydrogenated oils
meat what the HECK do I use to cook/bake with?!  You are about to be introduced into the wonderful world of substituting ingredients!  Once you know what substitutes are "healthy choices" (as my 4-yr-old would phrase it) will be able to use all of your favorite family recipes, with a healthier twist!

-Sugar Substitutes are not hard to come by:
-sucanat or coconut sugar are great in cookies
-agave nectar is so awesome on pancakes, in breads, muffins, sauces, salad dressings...ect...versatile and low   glycemic...use it!
-100% Maple syrup and honey are also choices that some may use...I personally think there are healthier options

Flour Substitues:
-Bob's Red Mill 10 Grain flour (amazing!) it's finely ground so it's great for baked goods
-King Arthurs White Whole Wheat Flour (it's not white flour, it's wheat flour made from a white wheat berry, rather than the red)  It's more delicate in texture, so it won't be as heavy as a regular wheat flour
-King Arthurs Whole Wheat Flour

Dairy Substitues:
-Unsweetened Almond milk (Blue Diamond)...this is great in mashed potatoes, gravies and sauces, or creamy soups because there are no sweeteners
-Regular Almond milk (I don't typically use the vanilla for anything)
Now, soy milk can be used interchangeably with Almond milk, but for unresolved conflicts over soy, I choose Almond...I personally am not a huge fan of rice milk, but if you like it, you can use it!
-Coconut Milk (I think Thai Organic in the can is what I use, but any organic brand works...The canned kind is SUPER creamy and not watered down at use that kind)...this one I'll use in a lot of Indian recipes, curries, and smoothies!

-Egg Replacer....there are 2 kinds that I've used:  Ener-G and Bobs Red Mill...both have produced amazing results in my whatever you can find, you can use :)

-Applesauce (sounds weird I know), but if you're striving to bake something low fat...cookies, bread, muffins, brownies...this stuff is a miracle!  Note:  this will slightly change the texture of your baked goods...not too much in breads, but especially in cookies (I'll typically do half applesauce and half coconut oil for cookies) 
-Coconut oil (do get organic here)...this little beauty is an amazing oil substitute...use it in baking, frying (if you must), stir frys, homemade garlic bread, on top of bagels, pancakes...basically anywhere you'd use butter!
-Earth Balance Buttery Spread (I get the soy has the red label, not the green)...Warning:  this stuff is DANGEROUSLY amazing! Use in any recipe that calls for butter for amazing taste and texture...just know that there are healthier've been warned!

-Tempeh (a fermented soy product...that no matter what people say bad about soy, somehow this product is still healthy!)...I'll used this as a ground beef substitute, not because it tastes like it, but because when it's crumbled and cooked into what you'll be cooking, the chewy texture will be an amazing (super high protein) surprise, even to the toughest critic.

So those are the basic substitutions that you'll find in my for meat, most of the time you can just leave it out, but for those who need to transition away from meat, there are a few soy-based products that I have experimented with, and they'll be noted in my recipes where applicable!

Having the tools and knowledge to eat healthy is like having a cheaters guide to a test!  Learn these, and commit them to memory, then have them on hand in your kitchen...that way you'll never be "forced" to cook something unhealthy, when what you intended was to produce something healthy!

Welcome to a non-blogger's blog :)

Hello to all and welcome to my attempt at blogging!

 For those of you who don't know me (or much about me), I am an approaching 30 yr old, stay-at-home mom with 2 adorable girls (and another 1 on the way!)  My love affair for cooking, baking and anything food related (besides doing the dishes afterwards!), has taken a journey to the healthy side.  When my first daughter, Sofia, was born, I knew that I wanted to do everything within my power to raise her with an appreciation for healthy food, so she wouldn't have the love-hate relationship (and its effects...aka weight gain) with food that I've had!  After doing a bunch of research over the course of a year, I arrived at the conclusion that the best way for me to keep my family healthy is to feed them a primarily vegan diet.  (I say "primarily" because if you adhere to the strictest of rules in the vegan realm, you are really limited to what you can use...and since my desire is for health, and not due to my love of animals (not an animal hater, just to clear that up), my interpretation is to leave out all animal-based products in my cooking/baking).  However, judgment is not passed from me to you for the way that you're choosing to eat...I'm pretty laid-back, and pretty accepting, so read this with an open mind, because you're here for some reason!

I've never blogged before, but my goal in this is to help give people easy to follow, very understandable recipes, so that your families will be able to appreciate healthy food for what it can be, and not the tasteless plate of raw vegetables that most (husbands) are picturing!  My OTHER goal is maybe a tad see, I have a lot of people requesting my healthy recipes lately, and rather than typing them out for each of those individuals, I am hoping to "blanket recipe" people, in an effort to save time! (Don't judge me!)

So that's it...that's why I'm doing this:  I'm very passionate about raising healthy families, AND I don't have the time (or energy) to reply to EVERY recipe request sent my way!  Take that for what it's worth, and again, welcome!