Green Smoothie ~ An Awesome Breakfast TO GO!

OK, so this is my latest smoothie and I TOTALLY LOVE IT! 

1-2 scrambled eggs
3/4 C plain yogurt
1-2 tsp coconut oil (unrefined, cold pressed, organic)
1/2 frozen banana
1 handful frozen grapes
1/2 frozen orange
1 handful of greens... washed and trimmed, your choice: spinach, kale, herbs, mustard greens etc.  (I love a pinch of cilantro)
optional: 1 tsp almond butter

Making Yogurt at home with a crock pot

Making yogurt in a crock pot by Jen Knight
I make this by the gallon, so I use a large crock-pot.  Make sure that your milk amount matches your crock pot size.  The milk should fill the crock pot up to 1 inch from the top.
  1. In a large saucepan, heat milk over medium heat (or high heat if you never stop stirring), stirring frequently to just below the boiling point (185 degrees). Remove the milk from heat and allow to cool until lukewarm (110 - 100 degrees). To cool the milk quickly, place the saucepan into the refrigerator or a sink of cold water, stirring occasionally to cool evenly. This takes about 20 minutes.
  2. Pre-warm the crock pot.  I plug it in on high for about 5 minutes.
  3. Add yogurt starter to the warm milk, stirring gently to blend. Do not beat or whip. Pour the mixture into the warmed crock pot, secure the lid, and unplug.  Then wrap entire crock & heating base in a beach towel and put into a large cooler and stuff empty space with more towels.  Leave undisturbed and out of drafts for 6-10 hours, depending on tartness and thickness desired. Yogurt should be partially set after processing and will thicken further after refrigeration.  I refridgerate for at least 6 hours before using.
The yogurt starter I use is: DCI #ABY-2C Yogurt Culture from Dairy Connection inc, 501 Tasman St., Suite B, Madison, WI 53714 phone 608-242-9030.  I use about 1/16th - 1/32 of a tsp per gallon of milk so the 100 gallon size I buy lasts me 1.5-2 years and I keep it in the freezer.  The 100 gallon size comes in a small container the size of a perscription medicine bottle.

Katy’s Sweet Salad Dressing

¼ C olive oil
¼ C apple cider vinegar
1 Tablespoon sugar  --> the original recipe called for 1/4 C sugar
¼ - ½ tsp celery salt (depending on how spicy you like it)
¼ - ½ tsp garlic powder (depending on how spicy you like it)
mix in cruet and shake!

Double Chocolate Torte

1 pkg fudge brownie mix (13 x 9 inch pan size) Betty Crocker fudge brownie mix is best, 1 cup (6 oz) semisweet chocolate chips melted
¼ C or ½ a stick butter softened
2 cups whipped cream
1 tsp chocolate sprinkles

Prepare brownie mix according to package directions for fudge like brownies.  Spread batter in a greased and floured 9 inched round baking pan (cake pan).  Bake at 350 for 38-42 minutes or until center springs back when lightly touched.  Cool for 10 minutes.  Invert onto a serving plate, cool completely.

In a bowl, microwave and stir the chocolate and butter until smooth.  Spread over brownie layer immediately, refrigerate for 30 minutes.  Just before serving, top with whipped topping.  Decorate with sprinkles.

Yield: 9-12 servings.  (It is very rich so cut small wedges)

Options in the summer: raspberries in the whipped cream or drizzle with raspberry sauce or caramel

Jodi's Awesome Chicken

This is best when you make it the night before and let it marinate in the fridge overnight.  I did make a few changes to the original recipe, but it is almost exactly like I got it from my dear sister in law.
Put all the following ingredients into a 9X13 glass baking dish:

1 tsp. oregano
1 tsp basil
1 tsp salt
1/4 tsp. pepper
1/2 c. red wine vinegar
1/2 c. olive oil

1c. prunes (cut up)
1/2 c. capers with juice
1 c. sliced olives (optional)
6 bay leaves
1 clove garlic minced

¼ - ½ C brown sugar depending on how sweet you like your chicken
1/2 c. white wine (optional)

Mix all together in pan.  Place as many chicken breasts (cut in half) as will fit.  I usually use 8 boneless skinless chicken breasts cut in half.  Then flip them all over to coat and make sure big chunks remain on bottom of pan.  Marinate at least 8 (up to 24hrs).

Preheat oven to 350.  Flip chicken again.  Bake for 50 minutes uncovered.

Serve on top of buttered couscous (or for a healthier option try quinoa).  You can buy both in the bulk section at whole foods.

Garlic Lime Coconut Chicken with Mushrooms

Garlic Lime Coconut Chicken with Mushrooms – by Jennifer Knight 10-2010
Serves 8
Ingredients:
¼ C white wine
2 Tbl olive oil
2 limes (about ½ cup juice)
8 boneless skinless chicken breasts cut in half
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon pepper
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/2 teaspoon paprika
2 teaspoons garlic powder
1 teaspoon onion powder
1 teaspoon thyme
 2 Tbl corn starch
1/2 cup chicken broth
½ Cup coconut milk
1 can of drained cut mushrooms
2 cups uncooked brown rice

Begin to cook brown rice to serve with chicken

In the bottom of a 12 by 15 baking dish put:
¼ C white wine
2 Tbl olive oil
Juice of 2 limes (about ½ cup)
wisk together in bottom of baking dish

Place 8 boneless skinless chicken breasts cut in half in the baking dish, then flip to coat with wine and lime mixture
In a small bowl mix:
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon pepper
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/2 teaspoon paprika
2 teaspoons garlic powder
1 teaspoon onion powder
1 teaspoon thyme

Sprinkle ½ of spice mixture on top of the chicken breasts, flip and sprinkle the other side of chicken breasts with the remaining spice mixture.

Cook uncovered at 375 F for 30 minutes, cut into thickest breast to make sure its cooked inside

Pour all juices from the baking dish into a sauce pan and heat to boiling
In small dish mix 2 Tbl corn starch with 1 Tbl water
Gradually add corn starch water to sauce pan, stirring constantly
Add to this
1/2 cup chicken broth
½ Cup coconut milk
1 can of drained cut mushrooms

Boil until reduced by 1/3 or ½ depending on how much sauce you need and how thick you like it

Serve chicken over brown rice and a bit of mushroom sauce on top.
Vegetable suggestions: fresh sautéed green beans, steamed kale, or cooked spinach

If you don’t like brown rice try it with baked potatoes and steamed broccoli and carrot slices.

How to cook chickpeas or garbanzo beans

To cook chickpeas without them turning to mush or having their outside peel come off:

1 C uncooked = 3 cups cooked
I always cook extra to have some in the freezer ready to go!

Boil 2 C uncooked chickpeas in 2 quarts of water for three minutes, cover, and set aside for two hours.
Rinse chickpeas
Boil chickpeas in 2 quarts of fresh water three minutes, cover, and set aside overnight.
Rinse chickpeas
Boil 10 minutes in 2 quarts of fresh water and let sit for a few hours.
Taste to make sure they are done.

Hummus

Jen’s Hummus made in Vitamix blender

¾ C sesame seeds
2 tsp sesame oil + 1 tsp olive oil
3 tsp salt
1/3 cup lemon juice (I use bottled, if you use fresh squeezed lemons cut to ¼ C or less)
4-6 Tbl garlic cloves pre-minced from SAMS, use less (2-3 cloves) if garlic is fresh or you don't LOVE garlic
1/2 tsp pepper
1 tsp paprika
1/8 tsp cayenne
1 C water

mix on high in Vitamix until liquified
add
4 cups cooked garbanzo beans (aka chick peas)
mix on high in vitamix
Add reserve liquid from the chickpeas as needed to make hummus smooth and creamy. I usually add ¼ - ¾ C depending on the day.

When serving: sprinkle with a little paprika for appearance
Serving suggestions: pita bread, or crackers or veggies
Store covered in fridge.

Everyday Whole Wheat Bread

Jennifer’s Honey Whole Wheat Bread
Put the following ingredients in the bread maker in the order listed below.  Make a small well or hole in the top center of the dry ingredients after adding the wheat gluten and put the dry yeast in that well.

1 ¾ C warm water
2 Tbs olive oil
3 Tbs honey
4 C whole wheat flour
1 tsp sea salt
1 tsp wheat gluten
2 ¼ tsp dry yeast

makes one 2 lb loaf in bread maker on wheat setting
can also make on dough setting in bread maker or in kitchen aide mixer then pour into greased glass bread pan, let rise and bake in the oven till browned and hollow sounding when tapped.

Variation: Nutty Honey Whole Wheat
Add:
1 heaping Tbs sesame seeds
1 heaping Tbs sunflower seeds
1 heaping Tbs flax seed meal

Keeping your bread fresh:
Store in airtight container or bag on the counter or freeze it for later use
Do not refrigerate

In my house here is how the bread gets used:
Days 1-2 we eat it fresh or use it for sandwiches
Days 3-4, we use it for toast or French toast for breakfast (it makes the best French toast)
Day 5, it gets made into breadcrumbs to be used that day or it gets frozen for breadcrumbs for a later date

Homemade Tortillas

Whole Wheat Tortillas – Jen 6/2010

Makes about 12 ten inch tortillas

1 ¾ C warm water
½ C olive oil
3 ½ C freshly milled whole wheat flour
½ tsp baking powder
1 ½ tsp salt
1 tsp garlic powder

Put ingredients in bread maker in order listed, start bread maker on dough cycle and let it run till its first long pause. Let stand 10 minutes. Shape dough into a log about 2 ½ inches in diameter on an oiled cutting board. Slice into ½ inch thick rounds (like a hockey puck). Let rest while tortilla press preheats.

Using tortilla maker, place ball of dough slightly off the center of the tortilla maker, close the lid and using the large handle give one firm press until you hear the air start to squeak. Once you hear the squeak, release pressure and open lid. Repeat pressing as necessary to get desired thickness. Open tortilla maker. Cook 30 seconds per side.

Put tortillas on a cooling rack between two tea towels to keep warm and moist.

Pizza Dough in the breadmaker

Jen’s Pizza Dough - makes 2 pizzas


In the breadmaker on the dough setting add the following ingredients in order

1 ½ C warm water (about 100 degrees)
1 ½ TBL Olive oil
3 C wheat flour
1 C white flour
¾ tsp salt
2 tsp yeast
optional: 2 tsp dried oregano

Put all ingredients into breadmaker on the dough cycle
When finished spread dough onto 2 greased cookie sheets (or 2 pizza pans)
Preheat oven to 425 degrees
Cook crust for 7 minutes
Top crust with sauce, toppings, and cheese
Cook again for 7-8 minutes until the cheese has melted

Note about making a totally whole wheat pizza dough:
Try the dough with this combination of flour first. If you like it, then gradually try to convert the 1 C of white flour to whole wheat. For example try changing the 1 C white flour to ¾ C white flour and ¼ C wheat flour and see if you still like the dough. If you convert the entire 1 C of white flour to wheat flour add 1 tsp wheat gluten to the recipe. The taste and texture will change as your convert the white flour to whole wheat.