NATIONAL ICE CREAM DAY

I SCREAM, YOU SCREAM, WE ALL SCREAM FOR ICE CREAM! (12 year old in us had to)

This year we're celebrating National Ice Cream Day with one of our favorite homemade treats.  Who said indulging can't be tasty and healthy too? 

Homemade Ice Cream Sundae Recipe below:

  • 1 frozen banana
  • 1/2 cup cashew milk (or almond milk)
  • 2 dates
  • 2 ice cubes
  • 1 tablespoon chocolate Perfect Fit Protein

Place all ingredients in blender and blend until smooth.  Place mixture in freezer for 30 minutes in freezer-safe bowl.  Remove and scoop.  For extra goodness, top with shaved coconut, macadamia and dark chocolate bits.

Voila!

QUICK KALE SALAD

This kale salad recipe is quick and easy to throw together and most importantly, everyone loves it!  I brought this for our Easter potluck and contrary to the popular action of those running away from kale, everyone dig right in! There's so much in it that some may not even realize there's kale at first ;)

Check out the recipe below.  Note that portions of each ingredient may change depending on your taste buds. Have fun with it and throw things in there that YOU love!

  • 4 cups kale, chopped
  • 1 cup shredded carrots, diced
  • 2 pink lady apples, diced
  • 2 ripe avocados, quartered
  • 1 cup quinoa (To prepare, boil one cup water with 1/2 cup uncooked quinoa. Simmer on medium until water is absorbed.)
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries
  • Juice of half a lemon
  • 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil

Toss kale in a bowl with extra virgin olive oil and lemon until marinated.  Combine all remaining ingredients slowly. Leave a few of the ingredients for toppings for that extra pretty appeal. ;)

QUINOA OATMEAL

Sunday brunch this weekend consisted of great girlfriends, a little bubbly, lots of laughs and a POTLUCK!  My contribution was one of my favorite replacements for the popular cinnamon oatmeal dish... quinoa oatmeal.  It's delicious and nutritious! (sorry, had to :)

This is very simple to make and it's a very quick premade meal to whip up in the morning if you're running late:

  • 2 cups water, boiled
  • 1 cup uncooked quinoa
  • 1/2 cup almond milk
  • 1/2 cup chopped dates
  • 3/4 cup raisins (substitute dried cranberries if desired)
  • 2 tbsp cinnamon
  • 2 tbsp flaxseed
  • 1/2 cup walnuts

Preheat oven 350 degrees.  Bring 2 cups of water to a boil.  Reduce to medium and add quinoa.  Stir occasionally until the quinoa is fully cooked and water is absorbed.  From here, place quinoa in an oven safe dish and add almond milk, dates, raisins cinnamon and flaxseed.  Place in oven on medium rack and cook for around 30 minutes or until warm and slightly browned.  Mix well every 5-8 minutes.  Once fully cooked and desired consistency, add walnuts.  Stir and enjoy!

Serves 6.  Stores well in the refrigerator and easily heats up in the microwave or oven for the next 5-7 days.  Yum!

EASY PEASY BRUSSEL SPROUTS

Brussel sprouts galore!! Almost every menu you look at nowadays has delicious brussel sprouts but how do I possibly make this yummy (and healthy!) dish at home?  This recipe will guarantee to please and is the easiest way Stacey has found to whip up this healthy treat!  Check it out below:

  • 4 cups brussel sprouts
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • Garlic powder to taste

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Rinse and place whole brussel sprouts in a glass, oven-safe dish.  Drizzle with extra virgin olive oil and sprinkle with garlic powder as needed.  Mix in the bowl to adequately season the sprouts.  Place in the oven for 20 minutes.  Remove from oven and let cool for 5 minutes.  Once cooled, cut each sprout in half.  Place back in the oven for 25-30 minutes or until golden brown.

Serves 4.  Enjoy!

ALASKAN HALIBUT FISH TACOS

Kaitlin and I strolled through our neighborhood farmers market last week and I purchased yummy Alaskan halibut to cook for dinner!  What more do you need on a Sunday night than fish tacos and a little sauvignon blanc?  See this awesome recipe below:

  • 4 extra large kale leaves
  • 2 medium size pieces of Alaska halibut
  • Sea salt & black pepper
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 lime
  • 2 large avocados
  • 1/2 cup plain greek yogurt
  • 1 lemon
  • Cayenne pepper & sea salt to taste
  • 3 medium-sized tomatoes
  • 2 scallions, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup quinoa, cooked

Marinate Alaskan halibut with extra virgin olive oil and sea salt/pepper as desired.  Place on stovetop on medium heat.  Grill on each side until fully cooked, drizzling juice of 1/2 a lime on the fish when grilling each side.

In a blender or food processor, combine avocado, greek yogurt, lemon, cayenne pepper and sea salt.  Blend until smooth.  Once finished, place in a bowl and mix in chopped tomatoes and scallions.  Boil 1/2 cup quinoa, 2 cups water and a dash of extra virgin olive oil.  Once water is boiling, reduce to medium and cook, stirring occasionally, until water is absorbed and quinoa is a light and fluffy, rice-like texture.

Continue to grill fish until fully-cooked.  Once done, use a fork and flake into large pieces.  Add juice of 1/2 lime and carefully stir in a bowl.  Optional: add sea salt and pepper to desired taste.

Scoop halibut onto each of the four kale leaves.  Top with guacamole mixture and added chopped tomatoes.  Serve with quinoa on the side for garnish.  Most importantly, enjoy!

 

BABY SHOWER ZUCCHINI BREAD & JUICE BAR

mimosa bar.jpg

Last weekend was Kaitlin's beautiful baby shower so our girlfriends celebrated the little guy and the beautiful mama-to-be with a ocean-themed party for #AhoyBabyD!  As we all know, food and drinks are super important at any party so our friends and I made everything homemade to ensure quite the hit!  Below are two of my favorite recipes from the party:

 Paired with homemade jams - strawberry, raspberry & grape!

Paired with homemade jams - strawberry, raspberry & grape!

Great Granny's Zucchini Bread

  • 3 eggs
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 2.5 cups sugar (can substitute stevia)
  • 1 tbsp. vanilla
  • 2 cups grated, unpeeled garden fresh zucchini (we added a bit more)
  • 3 cups flour (can substitute almond or coconut flour)
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • .5 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tbsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts

In large bowl, beat eggs until light and fluffy.  Add oil, sugar/stevia and vanilla and blend well.  Stir in grated zucchini.  In a separate bowl, combine flour, salt, baking soda, baking powder and cinnamon.  Blend with zucchini mixture.  Fold in walnuts.

Grease and flour two 9X5 inch loaf pans.  Divide batter evenly between the two prepared pans.  Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.  Makes 2 loaves.  Enjoy!


DIY Juice & Fruit Bar

The juice & fruit bar was the extra special touch paired with the option of sparkling apple cider or champagne to build your ideal mimosa.  You can choose any freshly squeezed juice that you prefer.  Our friend Laura chose cranberry, orange and pineapple juices with fruit options of berries (blackberries & raspberries), strawberries and pineapple.

We had the choice of sparkling water or cucumber mint water as well. Cheers!

girls group pic.jpg
 Brunch food with three homemade quiches - ham & cheese, vegetarian and quiche lorraine.

Brunch food with three homemade quiches - ham & cheese, vegetarian and quiche lorraine.

 The lovely party planners :)

The lovely party planners :)

 Daddy-to-be stopped by!

Daddy-to-be stopped by!

 Light blue Essie party favors!

Light blue Essie party favors!

BASIL MOZZARELLA APPETIZER

Last Sunday was our first official meeting for our latest venture, book club!  Its a great way to get together with girlfriends, chat about how you view the characters in the book and interpret the storyline, what you learned from the book and naturally... it's a great excuse to drink wine and hang with the beautiful women in your life!

A fun and easy way for everyone to contribute is to make it a potluck affair!  Our awesome friend, Lindsey, brought a delicious appetizer that I could not put down.  If the picture doesn't have you running to the kitchen yet, please see the recipe below and how EASY it is to make:

  • Fresh mozzarella
  • Tomatoes off the vine
  • Cucumbers
  • Fresh basil
  • Balsamic vinegar
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • One clove garlic
  • Fresh cracked black pepper
  • Truffle salt

Thinly slice fresh mozzarella, tomatoes and cucumber.  From the bottom up, layer starting with cucumber, fresh mozzarella, tomato and top off with a fresh basil leaf.  Mix equal parts balsamic vinegar and extra virgin olive oil then drizzle across the entire dish.

basil mozzarella_lcools.jpg
book club1.jpg

Mince one clove of garlic and sprinkle on top, followed by fresh cracked pepper and truffle salt.  You can use sea salt to replace truffle salt if needed.

Enjoy! Share your pics with us using #yourbeautifulstory

BANANA WALNUT PERFECT FIT MUFFINS

Two years ago upon launch, I was introduced to Perfect Fit Protein and my baking life has changed ever since.  Not only do I use it to make delicious coconut pancakes for breakfast every morning, but I now substitute Perfect Fit for flour in all of my favorite baking recipes.  It's raw, organic, gluten-free, vegan and most importantly, delicious! If you're a fan of banana walnut muffins, you have to try one of my favorite recipes below:

  • 2 ripe bananas
  • 1/2 cup almond milk
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1/2 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/3 cup melted coconut oil
  • 1/2 cup almond flour
  • 1 cup vanilla Perfect Fit Protein
  • Walnuts

Set over to 350 degrees.  Lightly spray muffin pan with coconut oil.  Combine bananas and almond milk and mash bananas until smooth.  Add honey, pure vanilla extract and coconut oil and mix completely.  Slowly stir in almond flour and Perfect Fit Protein until completely blended.  Toss in walnuts to your desire and mix.  Using a spoon, scoop batter into prepared muffin pan.  Place in center oven rack for 15 minutes or until lightly golden brown at the top.

Let cool and serve a party of six.  Bon appetit!

banana walnut PF muffins baked.jpg

TOMATO AVOCADO SALAD

tomato avocado salad.jpg

Looking for a delicious side dish for dinner or a great option to bring to a BBQ?  This tomato avocado salad is sure to be a crowd-pleaser!

  • 1 cup grape tomatoes, halved
  • Juice of half a lemon
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 cup chopped cilantro
  • 2 avocados, chopped
  • Sea salt to taste

Mix together grape tomatoes, lemon juice, extra virgin olive oil and cilantro in a bowl.  Add chopped avocado and stir carefully until all ingredients are well mixed.  Add sea salt to your desired taste, normally about 1/4 teaspoon is enough.  Easy to make and great for summer!

HOMEMADE GRANOLA

Breakfast is the most important meal of the day so it's important to try out new recipes to kick off your day in a healthy way!  Homemade granola is awesome because you can make it your own, be creative by adding your own twists to satisfy your palette and it lasts for about two weeks.  Try out this recipe below as a guideline and feel free to adjust measurements for what tastes best to you!

  • 2 cups whole grain oats
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts
  • 1/2 cup chopped pistachios
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans
  • 1/2 cup chopped cashews
  • 1 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
  • 1/2 cup raw clover honey
  • 1/4 cup warm coconut oil
  • 2 tablespoons Stevia
  • 1 tablespoon sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • Optional:
    • 1 cup dried cranberries
    • 1 cup dark chocolate bits

Preheat oven to 300 degrees.  Combine all ingredients in a bowl with the exception of dried cranberries and dark chocolate bits.  Mix well to combine ingredients.  Spread on a baking sheet and place in pre-heated oven.  Stirring the mixture every 10 minutes, bake at 300 degrees or until golden brown.  Once golden brown, remove from the oven and add dried cranberries.  For a chocolate twist, replace dried cranberries with dark chocolate bits.  Let cool in baking dish until crispy then place in an airtight container. 

As my personal favorite, serve with vanilla greek yogurt and top with strawberries.  Enjoy!

CHOCOLATE AVOCADO PUDDING

Ingredients:

  • 2 ripe avocados, peeled
  • 1/4 cup cacao powder
  • 1/4 cup raw honey
  • 2 tbsp. Stevia all-natural sweetener
  • 1/4 cup almond milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Unsweetened shredded coconut
  • Strawberries

Place ingredients (minus the garnish) in a high-speed food processor and blend to desired consistency. Cool in refrigerator overnight. Sprinkle with coconut and strawberries for garnish and serve. Voila! Serves 2.