Welcome to my blog!

I am often asked for my favorite healthy recipes and have decided to share them here. All of the recipes use only whole grains and unrefined sweeteners. REAL FOODS! I love to eat healthy foods and I love to share my passion with others. I do not pretend to be an expert and I learn more every day. So, come in, look around, and hopefully you will find something you like!

Thursday, August 4, 2011

The Yummiest Quesadillas Ever

I'm not even kidding. I first had these quesadillas at a local health food cafe. I thought I was going to die right there. Although the cafe has many delicious items on its menu, I never order any of them. Just this quesadilla. So, I thought I would try to duplicate their recipe. And duplicate, I did. You will love me forever if you make these. See? Like this. You will make this face at me...

Unless you're allergic to pine nuts. Then you will hate me.

This is one of those non-specific recipes, too. Sorry.

The Yummiest Quesadillas Ever

Whole grain tortillas (sprouted is best)
Shredded cheese (the cafe uses mozzarella, I used white cheddar, you can use what you want)
Black beans (cooked)
Brown rice (cooked)
Pesto (this is what makes these things so heavenly)

Put one (or two) tortillas on a baking sheet. Sprinkle with some cheese.

Broil just until cheese is melted. Top with the rest of the ingredients. Finish with more cheese.
Broil until that cheese is melted. Put another tortilla on top. Broil again until warm and crispy. Cut with a pizza cutter and serve.
You won't regret it.

Black beans

I have been making a lot of black beans lately. I LOVE them on everything, especially quesadillas and taco salads. Mmmm...

3 c. black beans
9 c. water
3 T. raw apple cider vinegar

Soak the beans in the apple cider vinegar and water overnight. The apple cider vinegar helps to break down the phytic acid in the beans, allowing them to be more digestible and also more nutritious! Be sure to put a towel over your bowl so you don't get any fruitflies in your beans. They like apple cider vinegar.

The next day, drain and rinse the beans. Put them in your crock pot. I usually add water just until the beans are covered. Awesomely specific instructions, eh? Then, add:

3-5 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 - 1 onion, diced
1/2 - 1 jalepeno, seeded and chopped (optional, also leave some seeds if you want more spice)
3-5 t. Real Salt depending on personal preference
1 t. ground pepper
1/4 t. cumin

Cook on low for 6-8 hours. Delish.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011


I realized that I keep mentioning kefir, but many people don't know what it is. It is a cultured milk product. Which is a nice way of saying sour milk. That is not a bad thing, though. Cultured milk has wonderful health benefits. The main one is the probiotics, which restore essential flora to the gut and also helps balance yeast overgrowth. It has antifungal properties as well. It also has a plethera of vitamins and minerals. I drink it raw, either by itself or in smoothies, or I use it to soak my grains. Cooking does kill the enzymes, but does wonderful things to the grains, so I recommend trying to consume raw kefir in addition to cooking with it. I was going to take some pictures of my kefir, but then I found this video by Cultures for Health and thought it would be much better than my attempt to demonstrate. :)
Kefir is so easy and so good for you! Even those who are dairy sensetive can often have kefir with no troubles. However, you can make kefir out of non-dairy milks, too! The grains multiply and I have no shortage, so let me know if you want some! I hope I answered all of your questions.

Note: I use raw milk to make my kefir and it separates into the curds and whey overnight, though in the video they implied that it happens after a much longer time. Don't be surprised if this happens to you. It is fine and nothing to worry about!

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Oatmeal Muffins

I love these muffins. I make them at least once a week. They are very versatile, too. This morning, I had some lovely rhubarb that I chopped and added along with some cinnamon. Mmmm. I have also used cranberries, dried cranberries, blueberries, and, of course, I even like them plain (especially with a little honey butter). I also sometimes play around with cinnamon and cloves, etc. Experiment and see what you like!

They are soaked, so be prepared to mix the grains and kefir (or whatever you choose to use) at least 7 hours (and up to 24 hours) before you want to bake them.

Oatmeal Muffins

2 cups oatmeal
1 cup whole grain flour
1 1/2 cups kefir (or other acid medium)
1/2 cup sucanat
2 eggs
2 tablespoons coconut or palm oil
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoons salt
add whatever mix-ins you choose or not

Mix the whole grain flour, oatmeal and kefir (or other acid medium) and let sit overnight (or for at least 7 hours).

Add remaining ingredients and mix well. Spoon into lightly greased muffin tins (or papered muffin tins), two thirds full. Bake at 425 for 18-20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Enjoy!

Soaked grains.

I have been quite absent lately. I am terribly sorry! I have been oh-so-busy. One of the things I have been busy doing is learning. Specifically, learning about soaking grains. (I am also trying to learn about sourdough. I've been unsuccessful in my sourdough making so far, but I'll keep you posted!) Anyway, here is a little article about soaking grains that explains why you would want to do such a thing. And you do want to do such a thing. The short version is this: By soaking the grains or flour in an acid medium (such as kefir, buttermilk, apple cider vinegar/water, lemon/water, etc.), you allow all the goodness that is in the grains to become available to your body. Grains are seeds, right? The Lord made seeds to have a built-in preservation so that they could store. (Did you know that they found wheat in the Egyptian tombs that was still good?) That built-in preservation (called phytic acid), unfortunately, continues to protect those nutrients and minerals even when in your body unless you do something to break it down so that those nutrients can be absorbed. That something is soaking or sprouting the grains. (But don't do both.) Many gluten intolerant people can actually handle the soaked or sprouted grains, because the process also pre-digests the gluten! Exciting stuff, right? Well, I think so anyway.

I have been taking some online courses from GNOWFGLINS (which stands for God's Natural, Organic, Whole Foods, Grown Locally, In Season. Sounds just like my kind of thing, huh?). Awesome stuff. I highly recommend you at least check out their site. They have great information and lots of videos for those of us who are extremely visual learners. :)

So, I just wanted to give you a little heads-up that I will be posting some new kinds of recipes as well! I hope you enjoy!

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Roasted Red Pepper Hummus

One day I went to the store and one of those cute little old ladies asked me if I'd like to try some hummus.  My girls and I occasionally buy hummus for a healthy snack.  I thought sure, why not? 
It was delicious.  I threw some in my cart and took it home.
While we were snacking on it, my daughter started reading the ingredients aloud.  Sugar?  Gum?  Food Coloring?  Seriously?  What happened to my healthy snack?
I started on a quest to find a yummy recipe, and came up with one that slightly missed the mark.  My daughter likes to remind me about that.  So, when I started making hummus again she said, "Are you trying to make good hummus?"
I had her taste test it when I was done. She looked at me with a bit of surprise and said, "It isn't gross." 
So, here it is, my:

"It Isn't Gross" Roasted Red Pepper Hummus

2 cups cooked garbanzo beans
1 roasted red pepper
1 Tablespoon fresh parsley leaves
2 small garlic cloves
2 Tablespoons tahini paste (Sesame seed paste.  I know some people who make their own, which is fine too)
1/4 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon sea salt
2 Tablespoons lemon juice 
5 Tablespoons water
1/4 cup olive oil

Place all ingredients in blender and mix until you have a smooth consistency.  Move to an airtight container, and let it sit in refrigerator for an hour before serving.  Enjoy!

Roasting your red pepper:  (This is how I did it; there are many different ways) Place the baking rack in the oven to the highest setting. Set your oven to broil, and place red pepper directly on oven rack.  Broil until the top of the pepper is black and bubbly; turn over and repeat.  Remove the red pepper and put in bowl of ice water.  Let it cool for a little bit and then remove the blackened skin.  Cut out the stem and seeds, and it's ready to use! 

Potato Leek Soup

So, I had a bag of Potatoes.  And it was St. Patrick's Day.  Why not make a Potato Leek soup?  Personally, I love it, and we've had it every week since then.  So, I hope you enjoy it too!

Potato Leek Soup

2 Leeks 
2 Bay leaves
10 Black Peppercorns
4 sprigs fresh Thyme
2 Tablespoons Butter
4 strips Nitrate Free, High Quality Bacon, chopped
1 Cup Apple Juice
2 Cups Chicken Stock
2 1/2 Cups Water
1 to 1 1/4 lbs Potatoes, diced
2 teaspoons Sea Salt
1/2 cup Heavy Cream (Though I've never made it without, I think this is probably optional...)
2 tablespoons snipped Chives 


Trim the green portions of the leek and, using 2 of the largest and longest leaves, make a bouquet garni by folding the 2 leaves around the bay leaves, peppercorns and thyme. Tie into a package-shaped bundle with kitchen twine and set aside. (Alternately, tie 2 leek leaves, bay leaves, peppercorns and thyme together in a piece of cheesecloth.)
Halve the white part of the leek lengthwise and rinse well under cold running water. Slice thinly crosswise and set aside.
In a large soup pot over medium heat, melt the butter and add the bacon. Cook for 5 to 6 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the bacon is very soft and has rendered most of its fat. Add the chopped leeks and cook until wilted, about 5 minutes. Add the apple juice and bring to a boil. Add the bouquet garni, chicken stock, water, potatoes, and salt and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer and cook for 30 minutes, or until the potatoes are falling apart and the soup is very flavorful.
Remove the bouquet garni and puree the soup in a food processor or blender. Stir in the heavy cream. Serve immediately, with some of the snipped chives sprinkled over the top of each bowl of soup.  I also cannot eat a meal without cheese. So, I sprinkle cheese on top as well.  It's divine.  Enjoy!

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Spanish Rice

This is a recipe that my husband brought into our family. It's super easy and yummy. We eat it as a meal, but it can be a side dish or rolled in tortillas for a burrito. There are versions that aren't out of a can, but sometimes I don't have time to chop veggies.

2 cups uncooked brown rice
1 can black beans
1/4 cup-ish taco seasoning (I buy mine from a spice store--in store usually has yucky stuff in it--so I'm working on my own. Just use whatever seasoning you would for tacos: cumin, garlic and onion powder, cocoa, chili powder, etc.) *
1 small can tomato sauce (or two if you like it more tomato-y)
1 can green chiles
1 small can corn (or use cooked up frozen corn)
1-2 cups cheese (we use cheddar)

Cook up the rice per directions on the bag. (Ours is 2 cups water per cup of rice.) Mix the taco seasoning with the tomato sauce. Drain the black beans and give them a quick rinse. Add all the ingredients together and stir like a madwoman/man. You can add meat if you like or anything else that sounds good. We top ours with avocado, corn chips (Fritos, which are so healthy), and olives, but I can think of lots more that would be good on top. Serves 4-5. Enjoy!

*Note from Jessica:
I thought now would be a good time to share my favorite recipe for taco seasoning. I LOVE it. I got it from allrecipes.com.

  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper

I usually use the whole amount in my tacos (or chili or whatever!), but if you don't, make sure you store it in an airtight container.