Sunday, November 22, 2009

Cream Cheese Frosting

I'm not a huge fan of cream cheese frosting, but I have to say - this recipe was really good! You really need to get the book that I get some of these recipes from! So far, everything I've tried has been delicious!

6 Tbsp unsalted butter, at room temperature
12 oz cream cheese, low-fat Neufchatel cheese, or a combination of both
3/4 C light agave nectar
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
Juice of 1/2 lemon

Using an electric mixer, cream together the butter and cream cheese.
Add the agave nectar, vanilla extract, and lemon juice.
Beat well until smooth and fluffy.

(Recipe taken from "Baking With Agave Nectar" by Ania Catalano [copyright 2008 by Ania Catalano]) 

Carrot Cake

Saraphina hates chocolate (I know - crazy, isn't it?!) so she requested Carrot Cake for her 13th Birthday. I've been trying to reduce the amount of sugar that we all eat, so I gave this recipe a try. OMGoodness! It was so deliciously moist that we had ZERO left-overs when the party was over! The frosting is also on my blog - Cream Cheese Frosting and is made with agave nectar as well. If you try this - let me know what you think! I want more - I only got a half a piece - so I might have to make some more with the extra carrots I have this week!

3 C. finely grated carrots (about 15 medium carrots)
1/2 C. unsweetened shredded coconut
2 C. Sprouted  spelt flour
2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp baking powder
2 tsp ground cinnamon
3/4 C light agave nectar
3 large eggs
1/2 C canola oil
1 C. nonfat plain yogurt
2 tsp vanilla extract
(Recipe calls for 1/2 C. raisins and 1 C. walnuts, chopped - but I don't like either of those in my cake, so I left them out)

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Lightly oil two 9-in cake pans with canola oil spray.
Mix together the carrots, raisins, coconut, and walnuts in a large bowl. In a separate bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, baking powder, and cinnamon.
In a food processor, blend the agave nectar, eggs, canola oil, yogurt, and vanilla extract for about 1 minute.
Add the egg mixture to the flour mixture and stir to blend.
Add the carrot mixture and stir until combined.
Pour the batter into the prepared pans and bake for 30-35 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the centers of the layers comes out clean.'
Let cool in the pan, then invert onto a platter.
Frost the cake with your choice of frosting. (The Cream Cheese Frosting on my blog is excellent and is from the same cookbook.)

(Recipe taken from "Baking With Agave Nectar" by Ania Catalano [copyright 2008 by Ania Catalano])

Friday, November 20, 2009

Spelt Pancakes

3/4 C. All-Purpose Flour
3/4 C. Spelt Flour
1/2 C. blanched, slivered almonds, finely ground
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
1 C. unsweetened applesauce
1/2 C. vanilla yogurt
2 tsp vanilla
1/4 C. skim milk
2 eggs
1/4 C. agave nectar (or honey)
2/3 C. add-in of your choice (chocolate chips, blueberries, strawberries, etc)
Butter or oil for skillet

Mix together flours, baking powder, salt and almonds in a large bowl.
In medium bowl, whisk together applesauce, yogurt, vanilla, milk, eggs and agave nectar. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients just until blended. You may add more milk, if needed. Fold in the add-ins.

Butter a large skillet over medium heat. Drop by 1/4 C. onto the skillet. Flip when bubbles begin to set around the edges of the pancakes. Cook for another 2 or 3 minutes or until pancakes are golden.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Bellagio Chocolate Frosting

8 Tbsp Bellagio Chocolate (found at World Market)
2 sticks butter, softened
1/2 C. Milk (I have found that Whole Milk works best)
2 C. Powdered Sugar

Mix Bellagio Chocolate into softened butter.
Stir milk and powdered sugar with an *electric mixer.
Chill before using.

* You must use an electric mixer or the frosting won't thicken as it should.

You can also use the Mint Bellagio Chocolate for a mint chocolate frosting. I like to do this at Christmas time and we use it as our birthday cake for Jesus!

Crazy Cake (Dairy-Free)

2 C. Flour
2 C. Sugar
½ C. Cocoa (I use regular cocoa)
2 tsp baking soda
½ tsp salt
¾ C. vegetable oil
2 tsp vinegar
2 C. cold water
1 tsp vanilla

(This is called crazy cake because technically, you’re supposed to mix it in the 9x12 cake pan, but I usually mix it in a bowl.)

Mix dry ingredients together and add liquids. Blend and beat very little. (Break up any large lumps of flour/cocoa, but there can be some lumps in it.)
Bake at 350°F for 35 minutes in an un-greased 9x12 cake pan.

Awesome when topped with Bellagio Chocolate Frosting! I make this cake at Christmas as our birthday cake for Jesus.

Recipe by my dear Grandma B!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Peach-Glazed Carrots

16oz baby carrots
2 Tbsp peach preserves
1 tsp dried thyme
2 tsp honey mustard
1/4 C. water

Place carrots and water in a medium pot.
Bring to a boil.
Cover, leaving the lid slightly ajar and simmer for approx 10 minutes, or until tender.
Add the preserves, mustard and thyme and stir gently.
Serve immediately.

Veggie Roast

*1 Beef Roast
*Peeled and cut up carrots
*Potatoes, quartered
Onion, sliced
1/4 C. Red cooking wine
Salt and pepper to taste

Place potatoes and carrots in the bottom of the crock-pot.
Put the roast on top of the vegetables.
Place the sliced onions on top of the roast.
Pour the wine over the roast.
Add salt and pepper to taste
Cover and cook on low for 8-10 hours.

Serve with dinner rolls and a salad.

Recipe by Jen!

Ham & Mango Pita Pockets

1/3 C. Sour cream
1/3 C. Mayonnaise
2 Tbsp minced fresh basil or 2 tsp. Dried basil
2 Tbsp minced chives or 2 tsp. Dried minced chives
1 Tbsp lemon juice
1/8 tsp salt
3 C. cubed fully cooked ham (about 1 lb)
2-3 medium mangoes, peeled, chopped and patted dry (about 2 cups)
6 whole wheat pita pockets

In a large bowl, combine the first seven ingredients. Stir in the ham and mangoes. Spoon about 2/3 cup down the center of the tortilla; roll up tightly. Yield: 6 servings (with pita’s the yield is about 3 servings!)

7-Up Chicken

6 to 8 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves
2 tablespoons butter
1 can 7-Up
1 teaspoon seasoning salt
1 teaspoon parsley flakes

Place chicken in bottom of crockpot. Add butter.
Mix 7-Up with salt and parsley. Pour over top.
Cover and cook on LOW for 6 to 8 hours.

All-American Apple Pie

6 large Granny Smith apples, peeled and sliced
3 Tbsp sprouted spelt flour or whole wheat pastry flour
2 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
3/4 C. light agave nectar
2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
pinch of salt
1 Tbsp unsalted butter or nonhydrogenated butter substitute, cut into small pieces

Preheat oven to 425°F
In a large bowl, toss together the apples, flour, lemon juice, agave nectar, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt, and butter and mix well.
Pour into your favorite unbaked pie crust.
Top with the second crust and seal with fluted edges. Cover the edges with small pieces of foil to prevent burning.
Using a sharp knife, cut 4 slits in the top of the piecrust to allow steam to escape.
Bake for 10 minutes, then lower the temperature to 350°F. Continue baking for 25 to 30 minutes, until the crust turns golden.

Taken from "Baking with Agave Nectar" by Ania Catalano
Copyright 2008 by Ania Catalano

Agave Nectar Scones

My kids love scones for breakfast, but Mom doesn't love what the sugar does to them. So, I have adapted one of our favorite scone recipes so that we use agave nectar rather than sugar. Enjoy!

2 cups all-purpose flour
3 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp cinnamon
4 Tbsp cold butter
4 Tbsp Agave Nectar
2 eggs
6 Tbsp heavy whipping cream or 1/2 and 1/2
1 cup dried, diced apples

In a bowl, combine the flour, baking powder and salt. Cut in butter until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. In a small bowl, combine agave nectar, egg and cream; stir into dry ingredients just until moistened. Fold in diced apples.

Turn onto a floured surface; knead gently 6-8 times. Pat into a circle. Cut dough into 6 wedges. Separate wedges and place 1 in. on an ungreased baking sheet. Bake at 350° for 18-20 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from pan to a wire rack. Serve warm.

Alternatives: In place of the apples and cinnamon, you can use chocolate chips; slivered almonds, 1/2 tsp almond extract, 1/2 c coconut, and 1/2 c. mini chocolate chips; or any other added ingredient that you'd like.

Recipe by Jen!

Monday, November 16, 2009

Doctor'ed-Up Tomato Soup

Do your kids love condensed tomato soup? Do you wish it had just a little more 'umph' to it? Then, try this recipe out and see what you think!

2 Cans Cream of Tomato Soup
1 tsp Tuscan seasoning
1 can (15.5 oz) Diced Tomatoes
Herbed Croutons, if desired

Make the tomato soup as directed using milk rather than water.
Add the seasoning and diced tomatoes; heat through.
Serve with herbed croutons.

Recipe by Jen!

Welcome to my blog!

Well, this is my first attempt at this. Bear with me as I learn the ropes! I'll be adding some recipes this week, so keep checking back! God bless!