Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Chocolate banana pops!

I was pretty surprised how well these went over for dessert last night.  Two ingredients, easy to make, and when frozen they are excellent little popsicles to enjoy on a hot evening!

I'm a big fan of Kitchen Stewardship, and so used her idea, but instead of chocolate chips, we used chocolate syrup!  Yum!!
She had a whole banana for dessert!
\I used a plastic straw to make a cluster of 3 little holes through the banana slices (and then slurped the banana pieces in the straw out and made an exceptionally weird noise!), filled the holes with chocolate syrup, put toothpicks in their sides, and stuck them in the freezer.  The recipe above mentions they will freeze in 10 minutes - not so with chocolate syrup.  Ours didn't freeze well at all, but were still very tastey.  Next time I will freeze them overnight and see if I can't get that chocolate syrup more solid!

Monday, June 27, 2016

Fish tacos

This is a family favorite. So often we get fish  tacos from restaurants and are always disappointed when it's not as good as these!

Ahead of time, toss a chopped red or orange or yellow (a green will do in a pinch) bell pepper with about 1.5 cups chopped mango (fresh or frozen). Add some chopped jalepenos if you want some spice. My girls tolerate a little chopped red or green onion for the 'spice' and its still good like that.  Add some grated lime peel if you have some, a tablespoon lime juice, 1 tablespoon vinegar, and a dash of salt and pepper.  Mango salsa!

Make some coleslaw with half a chopped cabbage (we use a food processor) but we always have leftover! Proportions between mango salsa, slaw, and fish are still a work in process at our house. I hate having way too much of one! Anyway, toss it with some (3 tablespoons) fat free mayonnaise and 1 teaspoon freshly squeezed lime juice til its tastey.

Fish - whatever the store has that's good, we will usually use a cheaper white fish like tilapia, but when we feel fancy we will use a fatty and tender salmon, yum!  Cod or orange roughy are also quite good.

We usually get fillets with the skin on. Lay them, skin side down, on a cookie sheet, and dust with some salt, onion powder, cumin, and garlic powder. Broil in the oven for maybe 10 minutes, depending how thick the fillets are, or until flakey and to your desired level of cooked-ness.

If luck is with you, you can use a metal spatula to scoop up the fish, and get just the fish and not any skin. Or just trim off the skin that comes with it. Cut into bite size pieces and serve hot!

Hard or soft taco shells can all be good.

Saturday, June 11, 2016


Whole wheat pancakes were a staple of my childhood.  Perhaps it was her way of coping with her youngest childhood growing up, but my mom made pancakes for me every morning of high school. Usually with chocolate chips, since my childhood was rough like that.  My childhood home and my own home have two big things in common: we always seem to have some milk that's gone bad, and we always love pancakes!

Adapted from Better Homes and Gardens

1 cup whole wheat flour
1 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 beaten egg
1 cup buttermilk or sour milk
1 tablespoon coconut oil

Combine dry ingredients in a large bowl (extra large if your children are going to be during the stirring.  It helps the flour to not 'escape' so much).  Add the egg and milk, use a whisk to combine.  Heat the biggest frying pan that you have (our perfect setting is just below 'medium') and when it's hot, add the oil.  When the oil is hot, pour the batter in!  My kids prefer smaller pancakes to larger ones.  When the bubbles that form in the cooking cakes pop, then they are ready to flip!

Serve with: jelly, non fat cream cheese, syrup, pureed fruit, fresh fruit, a few nuts

I also like to soak the flour overnight but that's a recipe for another day

This mornings topping options: (powdered) chocolate peanut butter, marmalade, and/or syrup

Monday, June 6, 2016

Powdered Peanut Butter!

It's official!  This stuff:

Is, indeed, just great stuff.
That bottle says it has 90% less fat than regular peanut butter.  I'm not sure how that works.  Do they really add that much oil to regular peanut butter?

Anyway, it's easy to use.  Usually my husband takes some time to adopt a new process in the kitchen.  He sees me do it a few times, he tastes it, tries it for himself... and considers if it's worth the hassle.

Not this.

Two spoonfuls of powder, mixed with one spoonful of water, mix it together, et voila!  Peanut butter than Monica can enjoy.  We finished our first jar in record speed.  It's full of calories and protein and flavor, but NOT fat!  Monica loves it!  She loves it on sandwiches.  She loves it on waffles.  She loves it on apples.  She LOVES it mixed with a little chocolate syrup. 

It's available from Amazon.  We got ours from Azure Standard.

And now I have to decide which is worse, the mess this little one makes breaking into the pantry, or the crying when I pry the Cheerios away from her...