Carrot Spice Smoothie

Carrot spice smoothie topped with  homemade granola …mmm!

Carrot spice smoothie topped with homemade granola…mmm!

This delicious smoothie is a great way to start your day with veggies, healthy fat, and protein! It even makes a nutritious dessert.

With about 5 minutes of prep work the day before, this breakfast comes together in just minutes.

Carrot Spice Smoothie
Serves 2

1 1/2 cups carrots, cut into 1/2 inch pieces
2 cups milk, divided
4 dates
2 T. almond butter or pecan butter*
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp ginger
1/8 tsp cloves
1/2 tsp vanilla
Stevia or maple syrup if you want it sweeter

Optional add-ins to boost the nutrition:
1 T. ground flax
1 T. maca powder
1 scoop vanilla whey protein powder
1 raw egg yolk (eggs yolks are safe and super-nutritious to eat raw if you get them from a trusted local farmer who raises his chickens on pasture)

The day before you make this smoothie, you need to do two things:
1- Steam the carrots until tender and then refrigerate.
2- Freeze 1 cup of the milk in an ice cube tray (leave the other 1 cup milk in the frig)

To make the smoothie:
Place all the ingredients in a blender (including the frozen milk cubes) and blend.  Taste and see if it's sweet enough for you.  You can add maple syrup or stevia and blend again if you want it sweeter.  Top with granola (like my homemade granola recipe), whipped cream, or extra cinnamon!

*If you aren't familiar with almond or pecan butter I highly recommend you google how to make it.  It is SO GOOD.  Or you can just omit the pecan or almond butter.  Do not sub peanut butter.

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How to Make Kohlrabi Hash Browns

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Calling all kohlrabi lovers and low-carbers! I have a recipe for you!

Did you know you can make hash browns with kohlrabi? Here’s how:

Kohlrabi Hash Browns

1- Peel and shred kohlrabi (keep in mind that it will shrink to about 1/3 the original amount when cooked, so make sure to prepare plenty).
2- Squeeze liquid out of kohlrabi. I just take a fistful and squeeze it tightly but you can also wrap it up with a cloth and squeeze the liquid out. It is important to squeeze out as much of the liquid as you can so that the hash browns aren’t soggy.
3- Heat 1-2 T oil in a large skillet. Sprinkle the kohlrabi shreds in a thin even layer in the skillet. Sprinkle with salt and any kind of seasoning you like (pepper, garlic, and chili powder are good).
4- Cook until brown on one side. Flip and continue to cook until the kohlrabi is evenly browned and cooked tender. You may need to add a few tablespoons more oil as the kohlrabi cooks.
5- Top with cheese, herbs, salsa, or fried eggs and enjoy!

Note: Although these hash browns will not become as crispy as regular potato hash browns, there are several things you can do to make the texture as similar as possible:
1- Squeeze out as much of the liquid as you can.
2- Use plenty of healthy high-heat cooking oil, such as coconut oil or palm oil.
3- Keep flipping to a minimum. Flip them only enough to keep them from burning.
4- Do not cover the skillet with a lid. This allows the steam to evaporate.

When the oil is hot, spread the shredded kohlrabi in an even layer in the skillet.

When the oil is hot, spread the shredded kohlrabi in an even layer in the skillet.

Grain Free Double Chocolate Banana Muffins- even Ella liked them!

The picture doesn’t do these muffins justice. Trust me- they’re GOOD.

The picture doesn’t do these muffins justice. Trust me- they’re GOOD.

I made a goof on the flour measurement for these muffins while experiencing the early symptoms of “baby brain” but they turned out so well I have adapted the recipe and made them the same way ever since! I shared this recipe with my family and when my mom made them she said that “Even Ella liked them- and she usually doesn’t care for muffins!” Joshua has not made an official comment on them, but I catch him eating them straight out of the freezer (without thawing them!) so he apparently likes them.

One word of advice when making these: do not over bake them! If you aren’t sure whether they are done, it would be much better to take them out sooner rather than later- even if they seem a little under-done.

Double Chocolate Banana Muffins
Adapted from Paleo Running Mama’s Double Chocolate Banana Muffins with Tahini

3 eggs
2 bananas
1/4 cup honey
1/3 cup almond butter (peanut butter would probably work too)
1 tsp vanilla
1/3 cup ground flax
1/3 cup cocoa powder
1/4 cup arrowroot powder or tapioca starch
1/4 cup almond flour
2 T. coconut flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1/3 cup chocolate chips (mini chips are best, but regular size work)

Preheat oven to 350.

Mix all wet ingredients thoroughly (a blender or electric mixer works best).

Gently stir in the dry ingredients until just mixed.

Bake in a greased muffin pan for 15-20 minutes. Baking time will vary depending on the size and type of the muffin pan. Monitor them carefully so they do not overbake! Remove from oven when they are still soft to the touch (not firm!), but spring back when lightly poked.

*Note: I use a non-toxic ceramic GreenLife muffin pan that has slightly larger than average muffin holes. This recipe makes 14 muffins in that size of muffin pan.

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How to Freeze Pesto

A common breakfast in the Anderson household is a fried egg on Ezekiel toast. My husband made this for himself in his bachelor days but now that I make breakfast for him, I’ve made it a little more “gourmet” by adding a spread of basil pesto on the toast. This change was accepted without comment and I never knew that the pesto made any difference until one morning when the basil pesto was gone and I served the fried egg on toast (without pesto). My breakfast patron lifted the steaming egg to peer suspiciously at the buttered toast underneath. “What happened to the basil pesto?” he asked in a jilted tone. I laughed in bewilderment. “How could someone feel so entitled to his special treatment after only a few months of marriage when a fried egg on plain toast served him just fine BEFORE?!”

Well, I learned a lesson. If you want a happy husband, make sure you don’t skip the pesto on his fried egg on toast.

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Did you know that you could freeze pesto to enjoy the flavor of fresh herbs all winter long?

One common method is to freeze the pesto in ice cube trays, but that can take too long to thaw if you want to use it in like… 5 minutes.

I’ve got a way to freeze pesto that’s better than freezing it in ice cube trays.

How to Freeze Pesto

1- Line a baking sheet with waxed paper or parchment paper. Spread the pesto in a thin layer. Freeze.

2- Remove from freezer and break pesto into pieces.

3- Place in a zip lock bag and freeze!

To use, simply remove a chunk from the freezer for a few minutes to thaw.

Pesto ready to freeze.

Pesto ready to freeze.

Frozen pesto broken into pieces.

Frozen pesto broken into pieces.

Homemade Ranch Dip or Dressing

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One of my self-imposed resolves as a housewife is to avoid buying anything from the store that I can make homemade. Hence my recent attempt at replicating Costco fudgsicles that looked AND tasted like mud (Thankfully my husband is still eating them and as soon as they’re gone I can try another batch!)

This homemade ranch dip is something I frequently pack in Joshua’s lunch to go with whatever veggies I have on hand. He must like it because at one point he asked for a 30% increase in the amount of dip when I pack it (my dip to veggie ratio wasn’t quite high enough).

During the winter, I make it with dried herbs, but this week I was able to make it with the fresh herbs that are now available!

I personally like to use yogurt and mayonnaise in a 1:1 ratio for the base, but I think any combination of yogurt, mayonnaise, or sour cream would work.

This recipe is really quite versatile!

Homemade Ranch Dip or Dressing
1/2 cup plain yogurt
1/2 cup mayonnaise (we like avocado oil mayonnaise)
1/2 tsp dried dill or approximately 1 T. minced fresh dill
1/2 tsp dried parsley or approximately 1 T. minced fresh parsley
1/4 tsp garlic powder (I have not tried it with fresh garlic yet)
1/4 tsp onion powder or 1 T. minced green onions
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper

Mix everything and refrigerate. Best to let the flavors meld for a couple hours before serving.

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Not-Greek Tomato Cucumber Quinoa Salad

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I’m not Greek. I don’t like olives. And I’ve never even seen My Big Fat Greek Wedding.

So- I make no claims that this is an authentic Greek salad. All I’m saying is, “It’s GOOD.” And you should make it.

Not-Greek Tomato Cucumber Quinoa Salad

1/4 cup olive or avocado oil
1 T red wine vinegar (balsamic or apple cider vinegar would probably work too)
1 T lemon juice
1 tsp honey
1/2 tsp salt
1/8 tsp garlic powder
1/8 tsp black pepper
2 T. minced oregano

1/2 cup quinoa (measured dry), cooked and cooled
1/2 of a cucumber, chopped
2 tomatoes, chopped
1 green onion, minced (white and green part)
1/4 cup feta cheese

In a small container, mix the dressing vigorously (I shook mine in a jar).

In a large bowl, mix the veggies, quinoa, and feta. Drizzle the dressing over top and mix evenly to coat. Serve and enjoy!

I prefered mine served at room temp rather than chilling it, but it can certainly be made ahead of time and kept in the frig.

Makes 3-4 servings.

"Really Good" Egg Casserole- High Protein and Low Carb

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My recipe names sometimes come from comments that people make about the recipe.

In this case, I told my husband this egg casserole was going to be a blog recipe and he needed to “judge” it. His response was, “It’s good!” I told him his critique was insufficient and that he needed to be as critical of my cooking as he is of his own cooking. He elaborated his original statement by saying, “It’s REALLY good!” Hence the name.

I originally created this recipe this winter when I was low on groceries and the only thing I had in the frig was eggs, cottage cheese, and some veggies. It turns out be a great meal for pregnancy because it’s high protein and low carb- just what I need!

The whole recipe has almost 100 grams of protein, so divided by 4 servings, that’s 25 grams per serving!

The veggies and meat can be omitted or substituted with anything you like, making this a versatile use-what-you-got recipe!

“Really Good” Egg Casserole
2 green onions, chopped (white and green part)
1 cup ground beef sausage (recipe here)
1/4 cup sundried tomatoes
A couple kale leaves torn into small pieces
6 eggs
2/3 cup cottage cheese
3/4 tsp salt
1/8 tsp pepper
1/4 tsp garlic powder or 1 garlic clove minced
1/2 cup shredded cheese

Preheat oven to 400.

In a 6x8 or 8x8 glass plan, layer the veggies and meat evenly.

Mix the eggs, cottage cheese, salt, pepper, and garlic. Pour over the veggies and meat. Top with shredded cheese.

Bake for about 25 minutes. Remove when the cheese is golden brown around the edges of the pan but the center is still soft to the touch. It may seem underbaked, but it will firm up as it cools.

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Here are the veggies and meat ready for the eggs to be added.

Here are the veggies and meat ready for the eggs to be added.

Hot out of the oven!

Hot out of the oven!

What customers are saying about our free range eggs

The dark gold yold is a good indicator that the chicken is raised outdoors and is able to forage for bugs and greens.

The dark gold yold is a good indicator that the chicken is raised outdoors and is able to forage for bugs and greens.

One thing I have noticed since raising chickens myself and also selling free range eggs from other farms for the past 5 years, is that once someone tries farm fresh free range eggs, they have a hard time going back to typical grocery store eggs.

One friend, David, says he can't enjoy an omelet at a restaurant anymore after making his own with farm fresh eggs!

Warning: Farm fresh eggs may spoil your enjoyment of restaurant eggs (except for Josiah’s coffeehouse, where they buy their eggs locally). :)

When I asked a few customers why it was important to them to buy free range eggs from a local farmer, they give 3 reasons:

#1- Flavor and “looks”

“We love the free range eggs! The taste and flavor is so much better than the bland, tasteless eggs from the store. The dark yellow yoke looks healthy and full of nutrients unlike the pale store eggs. The store eggs seem so fake after seeing all the different color eggs we get in our carton each week. The kids always like checking out what colors we get each week. We got a speckled one this week so it brought on lots of squeals of delight!” - Rebecca D.

“There is a distinct difference in the color and flavor of eggs from free range chickens compared to store bought, commercialized, mass-produced, caged hens that are fed pesticide infested grains.” - Dottie N.

“We choose the eggs in large part because they just taste better! Oh and they are just plain prettier, inside and out!” - Kristin S.

“I've honestly never been a big egg fan, but eggs from pasture raised chickens don't taste "egg-y" to me. They taste buttery, rich.” Deb H.

#2- Health benefits

“Healthier chickens produce healthier eggs. Amongst other nutrients that are found in higher levels in free range chickens, is vitamin B12 -- which is the one nutrient many vegetarians (like me) have a difficult time getting in their diets.” Deb H.

“We like the health benefits of the eggs from an Omega fats and cholesterol standpoint, and the easy and more cost effective source of protein that they are.” Kristin S.

“Eggs are a good source of protein. I look for eggs from free range chickens. It is important to me that the chickens are allowed to forage for plants/greens, seeds, insects and worms (which is their natural food source).” Dottie N.

#3- Buying from a local farmer you trust

“I do very much like to support local producers as much as I can. That is very important.” Kristin S.

“Factory egg-laying operations are cruel. The more educated I've become about the horrific short lives the layers lead, the more we insist on eating eggs from happy chickens who have been allowed to wander around in the sun and fresh air, eating bugs, worms, plants, etc (when there isn't a foot of snow on the ground).” Deb H.

Cool Lemon Dill Cucumber and Quinoa Salad


Cool Lemon Dill Cucumber and Quinoa Salad

1/2 cup quinoa

Cook the quinoa and cool for several hours before making the salad.  If you need instructions, go here.

2 T. plain yogurt
1/2 T. lemon juice
1/2 T. honey
1/4 tsp salt

Mix the dressing ingredients together and set aside.

1 cucumber, cut however you like
1/4 cup minced green onions (during the spring) or purple onions (summer/fall)
2 T. minced dill

Cut up your vegetables and mix with the quinoa.  Incorporate the dressing.
Serves 2-3.

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I used our spiralizer to cut the cucumbers into spiral ribbons, but you could chop them with a knife, too.

I used our spiralizer to cut the cucumbers into spiral ribbons, but you could chop them with a knife, too.

Herbed Chicken Salad

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Inspired by the idea of making pita pockets with my new sourdough starter, I decided to make chicken salad to go along with it. After three days of anticipating a chicken salad sandwich, I was really craving it, and this recipe did not disappoint when I made it Tuesday evening after a full day of packing orders and making deliveries! It only made 2 servings though, so in the future I will double it to have enough for leftovers.

Herbed Chicken Salad
Serves 2

1/3 cup mayonnaise (I use avocado oil mayonnaise)
1/3 cup plain yogurt (you could probably substitute sour cream if you prefer)
1/2 T lemon juice
1 tsp mustard
1 tsp raw local honey
1/2 tsp salt
1 T. minced fresh dill or 1/2 tsp dried dill
1 minced green onion (white and green part)
2 1/2 cups chicken, diced

Mix everything and serve! I especially liked mine served with cucumbers inside the pita pocket- a crisp, juicy addition to a flavorful filling inside a homemade sourdough pita pocket.

Leave a comment if you make it!

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