Sunday, March 24, 2013

Raspberry Chia Seed Jam

listening to: Andrew Bird
drinking: chamomile tea

I didn't do too much cooking this week, so I was craving something fresh this morning.  I recently purchased a bag of chia seeds from Trader Joes and have been throwing them in to smoothies and on top of greek yogurt.  I stumbled across this amazing recipe on Pinterest (here) for a raw raspberry jam made with chia seeds and just had to try it!

little loves
Chia Seeds are rich in omega-3 fatty acids, which are found in other plant oils like hemp oil or flaxseed oil.   Chia seeds are also what chia pets are made out of! They become gelatinous when you add water to them, so they are excellent to add to smoothies to add volume and texture to your smoothies.  If you have ever had Kombucha with chia seeds, then you know just how gelatinous they get!

This jam was very simple to throw together.  First, I mashed a container of organic raspberries.

action shot!

Next, I added the chia seeds and some organic white sugar.  You can control how sweet you want to make your jam.  I added about a tablespoon, and it's not super sweet.

And thats it! I ended up spreading it on some toast to try.  It would also be excellent stirred in to some greek yogurt, added in to a smoothie, spread on a sandwich, really anything goes.  I found a cute little jar to put it in too :)

a lovely way to start my sunday
Raspberry Chia Seed Jam
Makes: 1/2c
Time: ~10 minutes

1 container organic raspberries
1 tbsp organic white sugar 
1 tbsp chia seeds

1. Mash raspberries with a fork.
2. Add sugar and chia seeds, stir.
3. Let sit for a half hour.
4. Enjoy! Store in a jar or air-tight container in the refrigerator.

I can't wait to use the rest of this jam throughout the week! If I come up with something crazy that I use it on I will tweet it out on @veggie_ology.  For all of you meat eaters out there, this would be excellent on a toasted turkey or chicken sandwich! 

Don't forget to pin it for later!

Happy Cooking,

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Gluten Free Oatmeal Cookies

drinking: sun brewed tea
listening to: Otis Redding

I've been doing some research on gluten free recipes.  A few of my friends are gluten free, for various reasons, and I have considered going that route myself.  You should do some research in to why people are adopting a gluten free diet, and why more and more people are being diagnosed with celiac disease.  Please note, these cookies are not a healthy cookie by any means (2 sticks of butter.... holy yum). I do, however, bake with mostly organic ingredients!

I have never made a cookie, or any baked good for that matter, without flour.  But these cookies turned out pretty great! I did some research on different gluten free recipes and combined a few ideas. Naturally, I decided to add some chocolate chips.

I made it a special point to purchase gluten free certified oats (from Trader Joe's).   Also, you can find gluten free baking powder! 

This recipe requires grinding a portion of the oats until very fine. I used my regular blender for this, but a food processor would definitely be more ideal.  Well, to be honest, I used my hand blender first but made a huge mess.  Do not do that...

Then adding the rest of the dry ingredients, including plenty of cinnamon and a leavening agent.

Next, using my glorious vintage kitchenaid (grandma's hand-me-down when I moved to Indiana!) I whipped the butter and sugars and added the dried ingredients.

is there anything better than whipped butter and sugar?

After folding in the additional oats and the chocolate chips they cookies were ready for the oven.!
These cookies will be brought to work this week. They make a ton of cookies and are perfect for sharing.

a monster cookie!
Gluten Free Oatmeal Cookies
makes: 2 dozen
time: 10 min prep, 15 min bake

4c gluten free old fashioned oats
2 tbsp cornstarch
2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp gluten free baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
2 sticks unsalted butter, room temp
3/4c sugar
1/2c light brown sugar
2 large eggs
2 tsp vanilla extract
1c chocolate chips

1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
2. Grind 1.5c of the oats until very fine. In a bowl combine ground oats with cornstarch, cinnamon, baking powder, and salt.
3. In a stand mixer, beat butter and sugars until light and fluffy.  Beat in the eggs and vanilla.
4. Gradually add the oat mixture slowly, until combined.
5. Fold in the chocolate chips and the rest of the oats with a spatula.
6. Drop dough in mounds (about 2 tbps) on to baking sheet lined with parchment paper, about 2 inches apart.
7. Bake 15 minutes, or until the edges are browned.  Let bake 2-3 more minutes on baking sheet after you take out of the oven, then move to cooling rack.  Let them cool completely before moving them too much as they will be crumbly.

What other gluten free recipes do you guys have? I am new to this way of cooking.. please share!

As always, you can pin this recipe by clicking the button below.  Also, follow me on twitter!

Happy Cooking,

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Caprese Topped Balsamic Portabella

drinking: ice water
listening to: Umphrey's McGee album Live from Beacon Theater

Last night I threw a mushroom in a little pool of balsamic vinegar and hoped to dream up a plan for what to do with it today.  Well, today came around, and I went searching for inspiration with what I already had in my refrigerator.  I didn't want to leave my house on this lazy sunday.

The mushroom turned out absolutely perfect.  Soaked to perfect balsamic goodness...

I decided spinach, tomato, and mozzarella sounded like a lovely, fresh topper to the mushroom! Nice and light atop a meaty,  roasted balsamic mushroom.  

simply delightful...
...and utterly divine
This was super easy to bring together and turned out beautiful! I loved taking these pictures.

Caprese topped Balsamic Portabella
makes: 1 salad
time: overnight marinade, 20 minute cook time

1 portabella mushroom cap, marinated in balsamic vinegar overnight
1 clove garlic, chopped
1/2 c spinach
6 cherry tomatoes, sliced
1/8 mozzarella cheese ball, cubed
1/8 tsp dried basil
1/8 tsp dried oregano
t tbsp balsamic vinegar
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
salt and pepper to taste

1. Marinate the portabella cap overnight in balsamic vinegar, coated completely and the smooth side up.
2. Heat oven to 425°F. Line baking sheet with foil.  Place the cap smooth side down and sprinkle chopped garlic clove all over.  Lightly season with salt. Bake 12-15 min.
3. Make salad while cap is cooking by tossing spinach, tomato, and mozzarella with the basil and oregano.  Add EVOO and balsamic to the salad with a little s&p to taste.
4.  Top mushroom cap with salad and enjoy!

This salad looks gourmet and will definitely impress your friends and family.  It was an excellent meal to end my weekend!  Will you be making it this week? Let me know!

Happy Cooking,

Saturday, March 2, 2013

Jalapeño Margarita

listening to: Lotus album 'Build' 
drinking: this margarita!

After a long 6 day work week I needed a drink!  I have been craving warmer days lately, and what better way to contribute to the winter blues than with a drink that is supposed to be enjoyed on a beach.  I recently read an article about adventurous margaritas (sriracha strawberry... woah) and was inspired to make a version of my own. 

Last summer I made a habanero pepper simple syrup to add to margaritas and it was SUPER spicy.  So this time around I wanted to go a little milder-  I made a jalapeño simple syrup and it turned out perfect. 

Shaken with some fresh squeezed lime juice, agave nectar, tequila, and triple sec and you will not be able to resist.  I may already be on my second one now...

This was the perfect way to wind down after a long week!

Jalapeño Margarita
Makes: 1 cocktail
Time: 2 minutes to combine

2 limes, juiced
1 oz jalapeño simple syrup
1 tsp organic blue agave nectar
1 oz silver tequila
1 oz triple sec

Jalapeño Simple Syrup
2 parts sugar
1 part water
jalapeño pepper, sliced

1. Bring water to a boil, then add sugar and peppers.
2. Turn off heat and let sit until syrup is cooled.
3. Strain peppers from syrup and store in an air tight container until ready to use.
4. Fill shaker with ice.
5. Add all ingredients and shake well.
6. Pour in to glass, garnish with leftover peppers, and enjoy!

My college roomies came to visit a few weeks ago and one of my them gave me these beautiful table linens to use as backdrops for my blog!  I will be experimenting with them over the next few posts.  I love them, thanks Mal :)

Who is going to make a margarita this weekend!? 
Don't forget to pin this for later.

Happy Cooking,