Tag Archives: vegetarian

Chocolate Chip Cookies {& an arm workout}

how does this blog not have a chocolate chip cookie recipe already? i mean, shouldn’t that be the first post? so here you go, finally, i present to you, a chocolate chip cookie recipe.

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but, this is not an ordinary recipe.  the ingredients that go into it will create the chewiest, most delicious chocolate chip cookie that you have ever tasted. & not only are they incredibly scrumptious, but they are simple to make, & better yet, foolproof.  yes.   f o o l  proof.

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how do i know? {because i’m a fool} the first time i made them, i accidentally added 1 tsp of baking powder, instead of the baking soda that the recipe calls for.  i made a mad attempt to try scooping the baking powder out of the flour i dumped it into…i think i ended up taking out more flour than the actual baking powder {oops}. and then i added the 1 tsp of baking soda in…so who knows what really ended up in there. annnnd even still, the cookies came out flawless.  {they only lasted 2 days in our house. . .yeah,  the recipe yields about 42 cookies}

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oh, and the second time i made them, my brown sugar got a little too much air {dried out} and would not pack down in my measuring cup… so instead of packing down the sugar, like a good baker knows to do, i just filled the cup too full & dumped it on in.  voila, cookies still came out beautifully. see?  foolproof.

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i want to call them “chocolate chip cookie buttons” because they are cute as a button.  these are not the cookies that you put in the oven and a minute later they get super thin & spread out & run into each other, nope, these little guys puff up and come out looking all adorable & petite, like buttons. and that’s especially great for those of us baking at elevation…it’s not easy to make pretty looking baked goods in the mile-high city!

::how cute!  & yep, that's an Idaho quarter::

::how cute! & yep, that’s an Idaho quarter::

lastly, totally unrelated to cookies– check-out the beautiful flowers that matt got me this week {tulips are my favorite!} just had to share because i think they are so gorgeous. {& yes, i know that i am the luckiest girl in the world ♥}

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now, where’s that arm workout? read below, it’s part of the recipe! {& really only for those of us who are lucky enough to not own a fancy shmancy kitchen aid mixer with a paddle attachment…}

Chocolate Chip Cookies

recipe slightly adapted from: Apple A Day

ingredients

  • 2 cups all-purpose unbleached white flour
  • 2 tsp cornstarch
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • .5 tsp salt
  • .75 cup butter at room temperature {1.5 sticks}
  • .75 cup brown sugar {packed}
  • .25 cup coconut sugar {regular granulated sugar can be subbed here}
  • 1 egg {large}
  • 2 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • .75-1 cup milk-chocolate chips

directions

Preheat oven to 350°

Combine flour, cornstarch, baking soda and salt into a small bowl, set aside.

Arm Workout Warm-up: In large bowl cream together butter, brown sugar, and coconut sugar.  {Those of you with a stand-mixer fitted with a paddle attachment can use that here, but you’ll miss out on the arm workout!}

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::the beginning of creaming the butter & sugar::

Blend in egg and vanilla.

The Arm Workout: Add flour mix to large bowl in three parts.  It will feel pretty dry, and at times, impossible to mix, but I promise you that they will turnout!

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOnce all of the flour is fully combined, stir in chocolate chips.

Scoop cookie dough with a spoon and roll into balls. Place cookie dough balls onto baking sheet, about an inch apart.  Bake in a 350° oven for 8-10 minutes. {time may vary depending on your oven}

note: the tops may not brown but you will see the edges turn golden.

Remove from oven, let cool.  See how long you can go from devouring the entire batch {our record is 2 days} … enjoy!

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any comments, suggestions, or questions can be directed to Rachel at: nomushroomshere@gmail.com
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Phases {+ Beet Red Juice}

well, its been quite some time since my last post, i’m glad you’re still here reading!

to start this new “phase” of the blog…i’m going to get a little wordy on you… here goes:

i seem to be a person that goes through a lot of phases.  there are the silly little phases, like my drinks of choice – one week i will drink black coffee and lattes every day and then once i tire of that i’ll switch to hot green tea with honey, or cold fizzy kombucha, or sparkling water, or on and on, but they are always in phases.

and then there are the bigger phases, like this blog — i get really into it for a couple months and post a few times a week, and then i find something else to fill my time {yoga & running} and the blog gets no love. this cycles and cycles with all different hobbies.

and then there are the phases of life.  our family dog died unexpectedly this morning – he was a young 2.5 years old. our hearts are b r o k e n.  currently i’m still in the denial stage, and the thought of going home and him not being there to greet me with a big sloppy kiss and his tail wagging like mad, makes my heart drop.  {he was my parents’ dog, living with them in Idaho}

he really was the best dog, everyone loved him. you would have too.

Jersey, when he was a little pup

Jersey, when he was a little pup

so please, hug and love on your pups a little extra today.

other than being in a mourning phase, i am also currently in these phases:

  1. juicing. i was fortunate enough to be gifted an awesome juicer for christmas from my parents {thanks mom & dad}. i can’t stop juicing; orange juice, green juice, beet juice…i just love it. see the bottom of this post for a delicious ‘beet red’ juice recipe…
  2. hot yoga-ing. what more can i say? i stress less, my body feels good, and i love the heat!
  3. running. training for another half-marathon coming up in april.
  4. sparkling mineral water. yep, my drink of choice these days. who knew that there were two types of sparkling water? one chemically carbonated, and one natural — the bubbly natural mineral water is so refreshing. here is the kind i like best.

i hope the above 4 are not really “phases” because i want them in my life forever, but who knows, maybe i’ll kick yoga out for pilates, or substitute running with biking {my knees might appreciate that one!} anyway, i wanted to share that with you…and invite you to think about the phases in your life, you may be surprised to find a few ;)

Now, on to {what i hope is} the long-awaited next NMTK recipe…

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Beet Red Juice!  hold on — don’t run away just yet — even if you hate beets.  i dislike beets almost as much as i despise mushrooms {almost} – and that’s saying a  l o t.  but there’s just something about juiced beets. . .

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maybe it’s the gorgeous color that keeps me from tasting the dirty beet flavor, or the lemon & ginger added in, or the fact that you don’t actually have to chew it, but whatever it is, i actually love beet juice.  and that’s an awesome thing, because beets are a wonderfully healthy root vegetable.

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but, there is one thing to keep in mind when juicing beets — they can turn your urine red. don’t be alarmed {i was!} this may be getting a little too personal, but the first time matt & i  juiced beets, i noticed that my pee {‘urine’ feels really formal here} was a light pink color.  then i went for a run and afterward noticed my pee was a red color and i panicked… just a quick google search will calm you down – i’m no doctor though {and neither is google}, so do your own research or talk to your MD if you’re concerned! ;)

yes, it really is that deep red color with a hot pink foam! gorgeous.

yes, it really is that deep red color with a hot pink foam! gorgeous.

and now, pee color aside… one of my favorite juice recipes:

 Beet Red Juice

an original recipe from: Matt & Rachel’s Kitchen

ingredients

  • 1 red beet with stalks {or if yours don’t have stalks, that’s okay too}
  • 4 stalks celery
  • .5 cucumber
  • 4 or 5 carrots
  • 1 or 2 apples {i find 2 can be a little too sweet unless they are small. we like pink ladies & fujis}
  • 1″ piece ginger
  • .5 lemon

directions

juice beet, celery, cucumber, carrots, apple and ginger according to your juicer’s directions. squeeze half of lemon into juice with citrus hand-juicer.

stir. pour over ice. enjoy!!

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*this recipe is meant for a juicer only. not for blenders, food processors, or the like.

love & miss you like crazy Jersey, may you Rest In Peace

jersey xmas

as always, any comments, suggestions, or questions can be directed to Rachel at: nomushroomshere@gmail.com
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Simple Parmesan Green Beans

i have struggled to find a delicious way to cook green beans.  for some reason, when i sauté them, they’re under-done.  when i roast them, they’re over-done.  and when i steam them, they’re bland.

well finally, i have the answer to quick & flavorsome green beans.

matt & i will be making this recipe for Thanksgiving in place of the usual household “green bean casserole.”

i have never, ever been a fan of green bean casserole . .  who can guess why?

answer: the cream of  m u s h r o o m  soup!  my parents always thought they could sneak it in, but nope, there is no getting those minuscule mushroom pieces by me.  i swear, it’s like i gain eagle-eye power when confronted with green bean casserole.

but these parmesan crusted green beans will be the perfect Thanksgiving vegetable. they’re only in the oven for 7ish minutes, so it’s one less thing you have to worry about timing just right! – my Thanksgiving plan:  i’ll let the green beans roast while i’m carving the turkey.

Simple Parmesan Green Beans

an original recipe from: Matt & Rachel’s Kitchen

ingredients

  • .5 lb green beans, washed
  • .5 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tbsp freshly grated parmesan cheese {no green cylinders of powdered parm, please}
  • dash of sea salt
  • dash of garlic salt

directions

Preheat oven to 400° and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

Prepare your green beans: Snap off the stem ends.

Blanch them.

 

To Blanch:  Boil a few inches of water in a saucepan.  Add green beans to boiling water and boil for 5 minutes.  While green beans are boiling, prepare an ice bath {bowl of ice cubes and cold water}.  After 5 minutes of boiling, remove saucepan and drain, then plunge the green beans into the ice water to stop the cooking.  Stir them around until they are cool {a minute or two}, then drain again.  Pat dry with a paper towel and place in a medium bowl.

Drizzle olive oil over green beans and stir.  Add parmesan cheese and a dash of sea salt and garlic salt {no more than a dash or 2 needed!} and toss to coat.

Place green beans in a single layer onto your prepared baking sheet.  Bake at 400° for 5 minutes, then turn the broiler on high and broil for 2-3 minutes.

Remove from oven and serve alongside the main dish… enjoy!!

Special Shout-Out: Happy 95th Birthday to one of the world’s best grandmas, hope you had a wonderful day, love you Oma!!

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Peachy Green Strawberry Smoothie

i have always been confused by smoothie “recipes”.  why do you need a recipe? you just put whatever sounds good to you in a blender and then you drink it.  for me, this is some frozen fruit, greek yogurt, a splash of juice, and some water annnd voila! a smoothie is born.

but then i had been seeing these “green smoothies” everywhere — someone had the amazing idea to throw some leafy greens into a fruit smoothie for a veggie boost {& who doesn’t need one of those?}

after a few tries of throwing in added greens with my favorite smoothie ingredients, i believe i finally found something.  and now i understand why there are smoothie recipes in the world… because once you find a good one, you want to share it.

this one is great to start your day with, or to drink after an evening workout…whenever you choose to have one, i am sure that you’ll enjoy it… sometimes matt & i make it on days when we just need some extra vegetables  : )

Peachy Green Smoothie

an original recipe from: Matt & Rachel’s Kitchen

yield: 1-2 servings {we usually drink one each, but occasionally Matt & I will split it}

ingredients

  • 5-6 frozen peach slices
  • 5 xsmall frozen strawberries {or 2 large}
  • 1 large leaf  or 3-4 small rainbow chard, spinach, or kale with stalks removed {we like to use a different one each week, rainbow chard is pictured}
  • 1/3 cup plain Greek yogurt {we like Fage 2%}
  • .5 tbsp coconut oil
  • 3 tbsp orange juice
  • .25 cup cold water
  • optional add-ins:
    • 1 tbsp wheat germ
    • 1 tbsp flax seed

directions

Add above ingredients into your blender and blend until smooth.

{note:  We use our magic bullet, and this recipe fits great in it, but a full-size blender works too!}

p.s. here’s proof that even matt likes it! —

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Gazpacho !

why the exclamation mark after gazpacho? because it sounds better when you exclaim it, gazpacho!!   and, there is some exciting news to be shared: we have a food processor now… ! ! ! !

yes folks, my dearest brother, sister-in-law and nephew purchased me {& matt} a food processor for my birthday… best gift  e v e r.  i have been using it non-stop since the day i got it, all those recipes that required one, and we had to use a potato masher, or our hands instead…and now we can use the real thing!

so with our new machine, matt got the great idea to try some gazpacho! {there’s that exclamation mark again…}

i can’t say that i made it, because really matt was the one that slaved away while i was busy working at home–i just occasionally popped over to the kitchen to snap a few photos of his gorgeous {& delicious} work.  and now i’m the one writing about it : )

it’s such a fresh treat, great for a warm day/evening and would make for an awesome appetizer.  we ate it for lunch served with a piece of whole wheat toast…delicious. never made it before? us either, but sure glad we did…give ‘er a try & let us know how it goes!

Gazpacho !

adapted from: palete/palette/plate

ingredients

  • 3-4 large ripe tomatoes, coarsely chopped
  • 1 red bell pepper, coarsely chopped {we used an orange one, yum!}
  • 1 large english cucumber, peeled & diced {we used a regular cucumber and it worked fine!}
  • 1 clove garlic {2 if small}
  • .5 medium onion, peeled & diced
  • 2 slices whole wheat bread, crust removed and cubed
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp red wine vinegar
  • 1 tsp sea salt, + more to taste
  • freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1 avocado, for topping

directions

In a large bowl, combine tomatoes, bell pepper and cucumber.  Use a measuring cup to scoop out 1 cup of the mix and set in the refrigerator to chill {will be used later}.  Next, add garlic, onion, cubed bread, olive oil, vinegar and sea salt to the large bowl.  Use your hands  {please wash them well first!} to mix the ingredients together, crushing & mushing.  Place the bowl in the refrigerator and allow it to chill for at least an hour.

Once chilled, remove gazpacho in the large bowl from refrigerator and transfer to a blender or food processor.  Puree until smooth, working in batches if necessary. Season with salt and ground black pepper.  Chill in refrigerator again until ready for serving, at least 30 minutes.

Before serving, scoop ~1 tbsp of the chilled tomato/bell pepper/cucumber mix into each serving bowl of gazpacho for garnish and an added crunch.  Slice avocado into small bite size pieces and divvy it up into your bowls…enjoy!

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