Smoothie Bowl

For Christmas 2015, “Santa” bought Matt and I a nutribullet.  I have become slightly obsessed with smothie bowls because of it.  They are delicious, you can add all kinds of toppings, it’s healthy and yummy!  Allergy season has kicked in and I add a little local honey (which is supposed to help).  Here’s the recipe, all ingredients are organic:

1 banana (can be frozen)

1 small handful of frozen strawberries

3/4 c unsweetened coconut milk

1 large handful spinach

1/2 handful kale

1 tbsp honey

Throw ingredients in your nutribullet (or blender will work) and blend away.  Pour in your bowl and add whatever toppings you like!  I add about 2 teaspoons of the super seed and ancient grain blend from Trader Joe’s (it has sprouted buckwheat, flax seed, quinoa, hemp, chia and amaranth), shredded coconut, almonds, and fresh berries.  Enjoy!

Organic Chocolate Chip Plumalicious Ice Cream

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I’m a huge ice cream lover, but it’s been a while since I’ve had ice cream in a cone.  We were in Fort Bragg last week and stopped at a place called Cowlicks where I got black rasberry chocolate chip ice cream in a waffle cone.  When we got home and I did my weekly shopping I just had to get some cones but could not find a flavor comparable to what I had at Cowlicks……so naturally I made my own.  In this recipe I use local Brentwood Plums and all organic ingredients.  It tastes just as refreshing and heavenly as it looks.

Ingredients:

2 cups plum preserves

2 cups organic heavy cream

1/3 cup organic cane sugar

1 tsp vanilla extract

2 tbsp honey

1 cup chocolate chunks or chips

Directions:

1. Stir together cream, sugar, vanilla extract and honey to a saucepan and cook on medium until sugar is dissolved.

2. Add plum preserves to a blender and add 1/4 cup of cream mixture in with the plums

3. Blend on high until it is a smooth, creamy consistency

4. Add blended ingredients into a large bowl

5. Add cream mixture into bowl with plum preserves and mix together well

6. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and refridgerate at least 4 hours

7. Once refridgerated at least 4 hours, remove from fridge and mix in chocolate chips

8. Poor into your ice cream maker and mix according to your ice cream maker directions (mine is about 25 minutes)

9. Store in a sealed container in the freezer or devour it right away, your choice 😉

Apricot and Plum Preserves

I am so lucky, my Aunt and Uncle live locally on an orchard so I always get a ton of plums and apricots from them!  Too many to eat, so I can them.  It’s really easy, here are the steps:

-Wash, cut and pit fruit

-Place in large pot over stove

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-Add sugar.  For me, I filled an entire pot and only added about a cup of sugar.  Other recipes I found added up to 6 cups…WAY too much in my opinion but it’s up to you.  For the apricots I also added about 2 tbsp honey

-Add the juice of 1 lemon

-Bring to a soft boil and boil for about 3 minutes.

-Pour preserves into sanitized (I just run mine in the dishwasher) mason jars with fresh never before used lids.  After sealing you should hear the lid “pop” which means it’s officially sealed and no air is getting in.

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Store preserves in cupboard.  Once opened store in refrigerator.  Enjoy!

 

Hibiscus Cooler

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What you’ll need:

Glass gallon drink dispenser
1/2 cup dried organic hibiscus leaves
1/2 cup chopped mint (I used pinnapple mint)
1/2 cup chopped cilantro
1/2 cup sliced organic strawberries
1-2 organic oranges, sliced
1/8 cup honey
5-6 whole cloves
5-6 whole green cardamom, crushed

Instructions:

Place all ingredients into glass gallon jar. Fill jar with filtered water. Let it brew in the sun for about 4 hours. Enjoy!

*You can also add chopped apple, dates, raisins if you’d like your drink sweeter.

Cherry, Almond, and Fig Energy Bites

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Cherry, Almond, and Fig energy bites

Ingredients:

1 cup dried cherries
1 cup almonds
1 cup (12-15) figs
1 tbsp honey
dash of cardamom
dash of cinnamon

Directions:

Place all ingredients into a food processor. Mix until ingredients clump together into a large ball. Lay out a large piece of saran wrap and place ball on the saran wrap. Form into a square shape, about 1 1/2 inches thick. Cover completely and refridgerate for 4 hours. Cut into square and enjoy!

Another Walk in my Garden…Spring is Springing!

My garden is coming along great!  The artichoke plants are huge, no artichokes yet but I am hopeful we’ll get some this year.  We are enjoying eating the broccoli and I am also allowing them to flower so that the seeds spread.  Same goes for the Bok Choy, it’s pretty much gone but the flowers are spreading seeds.  Here are a few pictures from today:

First artichoke plant

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Broccoli flowering away!

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These are peas, they are growing up a trellis.  The flowers are beautiful and the kids often go back there to pick some snacks 🙂

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Calendula (and St. Francis in the background)

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Tigerella Tomato plant just transplanted outside last week

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Matt’s scorpion peppers (supposedly the hottest peppers on the planet) just transplanted last week

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Ok this basket is from the dollar store!  Gardening does NOT have to be expensive, we start everything from seeds which makes it much cheaper (plus teaches you patience and the satisfaction of fully enjoying the garden you have nurtured from the start).  I did cheat with the basket though, flowers were purchased from Lowe’s for like $3 so this whole basket cost me about $5.

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Just a little “after the rain” walk in the Garden

I love the smell outside after it rains.  And now that we’re in a full on drought here in CA, I am ever so much more appreciative of the rain.  Here are a few snapshots from today.

A ladybug on my arugula 🙂  We love ladybugs in our garden just as much as we love earth worms.  By the way, arugula grows really well here in Brentwood.

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Italian Romanesca Broccoli.  Seems to be doing well!

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Butter Lettuce.  Also thrives well here in Brentwood

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Telephone Pole Peas.  These grow tall!  This spring we will be buying a tall trellis to let these go wild because as of now they are taking up a lot of space in our garden bed!

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