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Posts Tagged ‘Fruit’

For the last two weeks, my weekday breakfasts have been almost identical.

Going to bed late and getting up exceptionally early to work on reports has lead to a lack of creativity around the breakfast table desk.

At least this easy, regular breakfast is still full of flavor and nutrition to get me going in the mornings.

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My new favorite: Maple Vanilla Granola with fresh soy milk.

I’m planning on making another double-sized batch of this tomorrow.

I adapted Jessica’s recipe a bit because maple syrup is so expensive in Germany. A 50/50 combination of maple syrup and golden syrup work really well together. I want to try maple syrup and agave nectar next.

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Bowl full of fruit: watermelon, strawberries and a peach.

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Coffee with soy milk in my Dutch mug.

Even though my life is less hectic with reports being finished, I’m not willing to give up this breakfast combination quite yet.

What can I say, simple suits me.

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PC242533 Who needs bacon when broccoli salad looks and tastes this good?

Vegetarian Broccoli Salad

2 servings

Ingredients

  • 1-2 cups broccoli florets
  • 1/4 cup raw pumpkin seeds
  • 1/4 cup dried blueberries, cranberries and/ or cherries
  • 2 tbsp mayonnaise
  • 1/4 tsp. sugar

Method

  1. Toss together the broccoli, pumpkin seeds and dried berries in a bowl.
  2. Stir together the sugar and mayonnaise until the sugar is dissolved. Pour the mayonnaise mixture over the broccoli mixture and… well, mix until evenly coated.

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I could not sleep last night. My mind was fighting with itself, making lists, planning lessons, and organizing my classroom.

For over 2 hours, I tossed and turned, unable to sleep.

Sleep eventually came but I woke up on my first day back at work feeling exhausted. Luckily, only the teachers and assistants are in this week!

Breakfast helped get me out of bed.

P8168439 2 egg omelet with spinach and soft goat’s cheese.

I got to school early and started to work right away. Before long, work was interrupted by catching up with my dear friends and colleagues- hearing all about the wonderful adventures they were on this summer.

I munched on grapes for a mid-morning snack.

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Lunch was leftover veggie stir fry from last night.

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I stayed at work until 5 then came home and ate the peach before going to the grocery store.

It’s Quiz Time!!!!!!

Can you identify this vegetable?

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How about from this angle?

P8168450 Ok, I’ll give you a little clue…

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If you guessed celeriac or celery root…

 You Win!!!!!

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For two weeks now, I’ve been unable to find just the celery, so today I bought the whole kit and kaboodle!

Celeriac is rumored to be a fantastic root vegetable. Great roasted or in soups, but I’ve not yet tried to cook this ugly duckling.

I was, however, able to use the celery in my dinner.

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Spicy Lentil and Tomato Soup

Adapted from Easy GI Diet

Serves 4

Ingredients

250 g (8 oz.) red lentils

1 Tbsp. olive oil

1 large onion, finely chopped

1 garlic clove, finely chopped

1 large celery stick, finely chopped

1 can chopped tomatoes, drained

1/2 tsp. paprika

1-2 fresh red chili peppers, finely chopped

1/2 tsp. ground cumin

2 1/2 cups vegetable stock or water

salt and pepper to taste

fresh parsley or cilantro to garnish

Method

  1. Place the lentils in a bowl and cover with hot water. Set aside. Heat the oil in a large saucepan and gently fry the onion, garlic and celery over a low hear until softened.
  2. Drain the lentils and add them to the vegetable pan along with the tomatoes. Stir well. Add the chili, paprika, cumin and vegetable stock and season with salt and pepper.
  3. Cover the pan and simmer for 30-40 minutes, or until the lentils are soft. Add a little more water or vegetable stock if the soup becomes too thick.
  4. Garnish as desired and enjoy.

Calories: 288, Protein: 18g, Carbohydrates: 28g, Fat: 2g

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This soup is so good! Spicy, fresh and clean tasting.

While eating it, I was struck by the wonderful knowledge that the taste is created by the combination of only real, nature-made food. There’s nothing like eating fresh, whole, real food.

When I thought the meal couldn’t get any better, the fresh German bread jumped in.

P8168462 The bread of the week at my local bakery.

Before I leave Germany, I must take a bread-baking lesson. That way, no matter where I go in the world, I’ll be able to bring one of my favorite things about Germany with me and share it with others.

While making the soup, I heard the loudest, most blissful purring coming from the office area.

Look what I found.

P8168454 Two very loving, very cuddly kitties.

They make my heart melt… numerous times per day.

Happy Monday, all!

p.s. make the soup, it’s so simple

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I beg you… please make this recipe this weekend.

Putting this recipe together takes no more time than making a sandwich.

The combination of simplicity yet decadence is probably sinful.

A few weeks ago, I bought a roll of puff pastry with the intent of making this recipe.

I love the name of puff pastry in German. It is called Blätterteig, which when translated means leaf pastry. The layers are certainly dainty and light like a leaf. oh, and I also love that a roll of Blätterteig only costs 89 cents.

Today, I opened the fridge, saw the roll of puff pastry, an assortment of fruit that needed to be used and cream cheese.

And the light turned on!

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Easy Danish Pastries

Ingredients

  • 1 roll puff pastry
  • 1 block cream cheese
  • 1 heaping tablespoon powdered sugar
  • splash of vanilla extract
  • 1 egg white, whisked
  • toppings such as strawberries, blueberries, slivered almonds, poppy seeds

Method

  1. Preheat oven to 350 F (176 C.) Unroll the puff pastry and cut into 6 even pieces.
  2. Space the pastry out on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper and brush the edges of the pastry with the egg white.
  3. Put the cream cheese, vanilla, and powdered sugar in a bowl and cream together using a rubber scraper.
  4. Put about 1.5 Tbsp of cream cheese mixture onto each pastry square and spread out, leaving a half-inch border around the edge. Top with chosen fruit, nuts or seeds.
  5. Bake in the preheated oven for 15-20 minutes or until the edges are puffed and golden brown.

Before and After

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These would be great for brunch, afternoon tea, baby or wedding showers, an easy gift, or just because.

Really, so simple yet such a delicious and impressive outcome.

P7318035 Poppy seeds

And for a little American patriotism…

P7318032Red, white and blue. 

Now go forth and bake! You won’t regret it!

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Vacations have many purposes.

It’s not all about doing, going, seeing.

Vacations can also be about reading and relaxing.

Because of this, I don’t feel guilty in the least bit for the way I spent today.

I did absolutely nothing.

Luckily, in doing my nothingness, I ate, so at least I have that to share with you.

Here goes!

Breakfast

P7287963 Plain yogurt

Raw oatmeal, ground flax and hemp seeds.

Blueberries, strawberries, peaches and red currents.

Drizzled with agave nectar and sprinkled with cinnamon and coconut flakes.

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Lunch

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Whole wheat pita bread with horseradish hummus

Red cabbage, tomatoes, cucumbers, sprouts and sweet potato falafel.

Junk food cheeze balls (at least they are baked!) and the rest of my peach

Most of my day has been spent reading a book my brother recommended.

In my relaxing, I decided to read while taking a bath.

All was well until I got out and realized while drying off that my left arm felt like it was on fire.

When I looked in the mirror, my entire left shoulder was bright red and there was a bright red line running down to my elbow. The skin was raised and swollen. It looked like I had a huge scar running down the back of my arm.

Upon further investigation, I realized that the medicated muscle pain bath serum had leaked.

Now this stuff is strong. On the bottle, it has a huge warning with very specific requirements for how much of the medication (one small cap) is to go into how much water. It also says the exact temperature the water should be and how long to stay in the bath.

Now, when you use this stuff as recommended, your skin does turn sun-burn red for about 10 minutes after the bath and it feels all prickly and itchy.

The concentrated medication must have gotten wet when I filled the bath and then leaked back into the tub, via my body. About an hour after my bath, the redness and swelling started to go away. Now, everything is back to normal, but it was kind of scary.

I’d be lying if I said that I didn’t take pictures and think about putting them on here. But, common sense wins! I really don’t want nearly naked photos of myself on the internet, so you’ll just have to use your imagination. Think scar. Big, red, puffy, scar then you’ll have it.

Back to the food!

Afternoon Snack

P7287981 Date with peanut butter, times 2!

(Yes, I do realize there is a piece of fuzz/ cat hair on the date. No, I didn’t realize it until just now. Delectable!)

Dinner

I was going to make the couscous stuffed tomatoes like before, but then decided to change from Northern Africa influenced couscous to Italian influenced couscous. So basically, I didn’t use the same recipe at all. I guess I ought to share the new version as it was even better than the first!

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Italian Couscous Stuffed Tomatoes

Ingredients

  • 6 tomatoes (I only used 3 and had a ton of stuffing left over)
  • 1/3 cup instant couscous
  • 1 Tbsp. bruscetta seasoning mix (mine was from Aldi)
  • 2/3 cup boiling water
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 2 spring onions, chopped
  • 1 tsp. capers
  • heavy drizzle of olive oil

Method

  1. Cut the tops off the tomatoes and scoop out the seeds and flesh inside the tomato, reserve for later. Turn the tomatoes upside down on a paper towel to drain any excess liquid.
  2. Heat the oil in a non-stick pan. Add the garlic, spring onions, capers and tomato juices. Cook until the onions soften.
  3. Mix the bruscetta seasoning (probably just a mixture of Italian seasoning, salt, and dried tomatoes) with the dry couscous. Pour the boiling water over and mix well before covering tightly for 5 minutes.
  4. Mix the cooked ingredients with the cooked couscous and stuff into the prepared tomatoes.
  5. Microwave on medium power for 3-6 minutes, depending on the size of your tomatoes or bake in the oven at 350 degrees for 20-30 minutes.

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I ate one stuffed tomato, along with the remaining stuffing. The other two will be my lunch tomorrow!

I also ate this:

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Mixed green salad with another hunk of pan-cooked cheese and balsamic glaze.

Then it was back to my book with a glass of red wine.

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Oh, and chocolate blueberry cake. I can’t forget the cake.

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Because, eating, reading and relaxing are what vacations are for!

Oh, I just remembered! I did do something today… I cleaned the toilet.

I did have plans to do the whole bathroom, but I only got as far as the porcelain thrown.

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Today I ventured to the adorable town of Linz am Rhein.

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Not because of the timber framed houses

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or the picturesque German squareP7277958

or even the beckoning barrel wine cellar.

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My trip to Linz was to see a friend.

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A very pregnant friend.

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A friend who should have had her baby 6 days ago.

That’s right, my colleague, who we threw a baby shower for, still hasn’t had her baby.

Now, since I never travel empty-handed a love any cooking challenge, I used this opportunity to help my friend out.

You see, she was expecting to be able to eat sweets by now, free from gestational diabetes.

Once the baby comes, she can go back to her normal eating habits, but since the baby isn’t here, no sugars, no fruits, no potatoes, no fun.

Until today that is!

After seeing Angela’s Raw Energy Cookie Bites, I knew I had to try it.

After a few substitutions to bring down the sugar levels even more, I was left with a moist, nutritious, sweet cookie. One that my friend even enjoyed.

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Raw Fruit, Nut and Seed Cookies

Ingredients

– 1/4 cup almonds

– 9 prunes, pitted

– 5 apricots, pitted

– 1/2 Tbsp sesame seeds

– 1 Tbsp sunflower seeds

– 1 Tbsp pumpkin seeds

– 1 Tbsp chia seeds

– 2 pinches of sea salt

– 1/2 tsp. cinnamon

Method

  1. Put the almonds and prunes into a food processor and turn it on until the mixture is finely chopped and sticky.
  2. Toss in the apricots and pulse a few times to chop them up.
  3. Combine all ingredients in a large bowl and mix well with your hands.
  4. Press the mixture into a tablespoon measuring spoon. Press until the “cookie” is firm, pop out and repeat to create 10-11 cookies.

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Nutritional Information per Cookie: 71 Calories, 4g Fat, 20 mg Sodium, 9g Carbohydrates, 2 g fiber, 4 g sugar, 2 g protein.

Thanks, Angela. You made one pregnant lady very happy today!

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Summertime in Germany is hot this year.

When I go to bed, I’m hot.

I wake up throughout the night because I’m hot.

My first though in the morning is, “I’m hot.”

In my sleep deprived mind, hot= tropical.

Tropical= fruit.

Hot and hungry= tropical fruit breakfast smoothie.

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Vegan Tropical Fruit Smoothie

– 1 ripe peach, pit removed

– 2 handfuls fresh strawberries, stems removed

– 1 frozen banana

– 1/2 scoop Vanilla Sun Warrior Protein powder

– 1/2 tsp. maca 

– 2 heavy glugs of orange juice

 

Put everything into a blender and whip it up until creamy and smooth.

There may be no ‘tropical’ fruits in this smoothie, but you’ll get the idea once you taste it.

Now sit back and act like your raised body temperature is due to an exotic holiday.

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