Grilled Asparagus Spears (Paleo/ Vegan)

Spring is here! This week many of us are planting our vegetable gardens so that we can reap the benefits of our hard work. We will not only be able to enjoy our veggies when they are ripe and in season, but also all year long. I love it when our veggies are in season, but I do also freeze them. Spring also means that we can buy fresh Ontario asparagus at our local farmer’s markets! Asparagus is delicious! I used to only eat asparagus steamed. Yes I was boring…

Grilled Asparagus

Shown here with Ribs topped with Honey Garlic Sauce.

The past few years I have been grilling many more of my vegetables. Asparagus is one of those vegetables. I love it when it’s in season, but I do also freeze it.

Grilled Asparagus

Grilled Asparagus Spears (Paleo/ Vegan)

1 lb. asparagus

1 Tbsp. olive oil

sea salt and pepper to taste

Preheat bbq to medium high heat.

Wash asparagus and cut off and discard approximately one inch of bottom (the tough woody part). Toss asparagus in olive oil and sea salt and pepper.

Either spear asparagus first or just place right on the grill. Be sure if its not speared, to place asparagus the opposite way of the grill. Turn after approximately five minutes. Let cook for five more minutes or until desired tenderness has been reached.

Grilled Asparagus

Enjoy!!

Shared On: Allergy Free Wednesday, Healthy Vegan Fridays,

 

Tropical Ancient Grains Breakfast Bowl (Gluten Free/ Dairy Free/ Nut Free/ Vegan/ Refined Sugar Free)

Breakfast can be a challenge. I haven’t been able to eat eggs on their own for almost four years. I try to vary my breakfast options. Sometimes I’ll have biscuits, or sausage patties with veggies or sweet potato bacon hash . Other times I’ll make smoothies or have my chia seed cereal.

Tropical Ancient Grains Breakfast Bowl

After making this delicious tropical ancient grains cereal, I realized that it tasted great served warm or cold. You can make a batch and eat it all week! Great for those busy mornings! It’s also fabulous as a snack!! For added protein you can add some pumpkin seeds to the top after cooking.

Tropical Ancient Grains Breakfast Bowl

Tropical Ancient Grains Breakfast Bowl with Pineapple and Coconut (Gluten Free/ Dairy Free/ Nut Free/ Vegan/ Refined Sugar Free)

1 1/2 c. ancient grains (I use a combination or organic amaranth, quinoa and millet)

1-400 ml. can of low fat coconut milk

1 c. water

1 tsp. vanilla (I use my own homemade)

1-3 tsp. maple syrup (or raw honey if not vegan)

1 1/2 c. pineapple chunks

2 Tbsp. coconut flakes

In a medium size pot, mix together ancient grains, coconut milk and water. Bring to a boil then lower heat to low and cook covered for 18-20 minutes or until all the liquid is absorbed. Remove from heat and let stand for 5 minutes. Then add vanilla and pineapple chunks. Can be eaten warm or cold. Add coconut flakes and time or serving for optimal crunch. Serves 4-6.

Tropical Ancient Grains Breakfast Bowl

Store covered in the fridge for up to five days.

Shared On: Allergy Free Wednesday, Healthy Vegan Fridays, Savoring Saturdays,Sunday Fitness and Food.

Graham Crackers (Gluten Free/ Dairy Free/ Vegan/ Nut Free)

Summer is coming up fast! May marks the unofficial start of summer with both the Victoria Day and Memorial Day long weekends later this month. Summer also means camping, bon fires and smores. Yes I said smores!

How can you have summer without roasting marshmallows and making smores?

Graham Crackers

For the past few years I have bought the delicious commercially made graham crackers that are out there. I have also said to myself for the past few years that I would come up with my own recipe. Well a few of weeks ago I started playing with ingredients. The first couple of times, albeit delicious they were definitely not the proper consistency. Too runny. Then I finally got it down pat. Yes I would be making my own graham crackers this year!

Graham Crackers

My brilliant daughter came up with another suggestion. Melt chocolate ( I use Enjoy Life) and cover one side of the crackers. That way, when you are making smores you already have your chocolate!! Yes I said she was brilliant. Now it depends on how chocolatey you like your smores, as to whether you cover your whole batch or just half.

Graham Crackers

Now, you too can enjoy your own homemade smores!! Maybe next year I’ll make my own marshmallows. 🙂

Graham Crackers (Gluten Free/ Dairy Free/ Vegan/ Nut Free)

1 1/2 c. gluten free flour mix

3/4 tsp. xanthan gum

1 tsp. baking soda

1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon

1/2 c. coconut oil

3 Tbsp. maple syrup (honey if not vegan)

1/2 c. palm sugar

In a small bowl, whisk together flour mix, xanthan gum, baking soda and cinnamon. Set aside. In a medium size bowl, beat together coconut oil, maple syrup and palm sugar. When smooth mix in flour mixture. Your mixture will seem to dry. Don’t let it fool you. It will stick together.

Put mixture on top of a 9″ by 13″ piece of parchment paper. Press mixture together. Cover with another piece of parchment paper. Roll mixture out to between 1/4-1/8 of an inch thick. I push the extra bits back where they are needed. Cut your dough into 2″ by 2″ squares. I made 20. Put your dough into the fridge to set for about 30 minutes.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Remove dough from the fridge. Cut your crackers apart so that they will bake as individual crackers. Bake for 9 minutes for 1/8″ and 10 minutes for 1/4″.  Let cool completely.

If you’d like to, melt dairy free chocolate and cover tops of half or all of your crackers to be smore ready!

These freeze well! They can also stay in a sealed container on the counter for up to 2 weeks.

Shared On: Healthy Vegan Fridays, Savoring Saturdays,, Allergy Free Wednesday.Sunday Fitness and Food.

Slow Cooker Pulled Pork (Paleo/ Gluten Free)

Pulled pork can feed a nice big crowd! If you use a pork shoulder or butt roast you can feed your crowd very inexpensively.  I love how pulled pork can be eaten on a bun, on lettuce or just on your plate beside your salad!

I have a habit of cooking the pork roast overnight. The delectable aroma that you smell, wakes you up with such a hunger. I usually go down at about 6 a,m, and start pulling the pork apart just so I can sample some of the oh so tender pork that I’ve been smelling.

If you don’t like the sweetness of Apple Maple BBQ Sauce then, you could also try my Simple BBQ Sauce if you’d prefer.

Pulled Pork with Maple BBQ Sauce

Slow Cooker Apple Maple Pulled Pork (Paleo/ Gluten Free)

1 Tbsp. ground sage

1 Tbsp. 3 Onion Spice Mix

1 tsp. ground cumin

1/2 tsp. black pepper

1/2 tsp. sea salt

5-6 lb. pork shoulder or butt roast

1 batch of Apple Maple BBQ Sauce or BBQ Sauce of your choosing

Mix spice together. Set aside. Remove outer skin from roast. Rub spice mixture all over your roast. Place in 6 quart slow cooker fat side up, cover and set on low for 8-10 hours or overnight.

Place pork in a large bowl and pull meat apart with two forks. Remove visible fat and the bone. Discard liquid from slow cooker. Add meat and Apple Maple BBQ Sauce into the slow cooker and reheat thoroughly. Serve on your choice on buns or can also be served on lettuce.

 

Shared On: Allergy Free Wednesday,

Coconut Chocolate Chip Cookies (Paleo/ Soy Free/ Grainfree/ Vegan/ Gluten Free/ Dairy Free/ Nut Free)

Just so you all know, I have finally made it to Instagram!!! Yes, I am late to the game but I’m trying to figure it out! Definitely going to take a while to fully grasp it!

Please follow me on Instagram so I’m not too lonely there!! 😀

 https://www.instagram.com/sandisallergyfree/

You can also give me some pointers if you see things that I’m doing wrong. LOL

Now back to your regularly scheduled post…..

So a couple of weeks ago I was trying to make a recipe that just would not go as I wanted it to. I always bake my recipes at least three times, before sharing them with you. With that recipe I ended up with three different results. Getting frustrated, I need to just set that potential recipe aside for usually six months to a year. That is what happened with my Lemon Cake recipe. I had been making it a few times and just wasn’t happy with the results, then I tried it a year later tweaking a few things and voila, it turned out great!

Coconut Chocolate Chip Cookies

I was talking to my daughter on the phone while coming up with this recipe. Sometime I just start throwing ingredients into the bowl and see what happens. Everyone loved the first batch, but I thought they were just a bit too much like a macaroon. Don’t get me wrong, macaroons are delicious, but I already have a recipe for them. I wanted these to be more of a cookies texture. So I just tweaked a little bit and these beauties were created!

Coconut Chocolate Chip Cookies

 

When you bake them you have to be patient and let them completely cool and firm up. Believe me, the first time I made them I they just going to fell apart. That is because I like to try them warm to see if they are still great when they cool. I really thought the batch was going to crumbs, but when they completely cooled they stayed together just fine.

Coconut Chocolate Chip Cookies

 

Coconut Chocolate Chip Cookies (Paleo/ Grainfree/ Vegan/ Gluten Free/ Dairy Free/ Nut Free)

1/3 c. coconut oil (softened)

1/4 c. maple syrup (or honey for non-vegan)

1 gel egg** (or 1 regular egg for non-vegan)

1 tsp. vanilla (I use my homemade)

1/3 c. coconut flour

1/2 tsp. baking soda

1/8 tsp. sea salt

1 c. unsweetened shredded coconut

1/2 c. dairy free chocolate chips ( I use Enjoy Life brand)

Preheat oven to 325 degrees

Cream together coconut oil, maple syrup, ‘egg’, and vanilla. Mix in coconut flour, baking soda and sea salt. Stir in shredded coconut and chocolate chips.

Roll dough into small one inch balls and place on parchment paper lined baking tray. Flatten or your cookies will be baked little balls.

Bake for 9-10 minutes. Now here’s the tricky part. You have to let these cookies “Totally” cool. I am talking a good half hour. If you don’t then they just fall apart. If you want to speed up the process, then cool them in the fridge.

Store in a sealed container on the counter for up to 5 days. Freezes well. Makes between 20-24 cookies.

**To make a gel egg mix together 1 Tbsp. ground chia with 3 Tbsp. water. Let sit for five minutes. Add in when egg is called for in recipe.

Shared On: Allergy Free Wednesday, Healthy Vegan Fridays, Gluten Free Fridays, Savoring Saturdays

One Ingredient Cashew Butter (Paleo/ Gluten Free/ Refined Sugar Free)

So, as I said before, I was going to share recipes of some of my basics that I’ve been making for quite a while. This is one of them, homemade cashew butter. There is only one ingredient… Can you guess what it is? Of course, it’s raw cashews!

Many other commercially made cashew and other nut butter have many ingredients. If you make your own then you decide what goes in. For me, I only use cashews. I always use up my cashew butter within one month, so I know it lasts that long. I’m not sure how much longer.

Homemade Cashew Butter

One Ingredient Cashew Butter (Paleo/ Gluten Free/ Refined Sugar Free)

2 cups raw cashews

Pulse cashews in a food processor. Every 30 seconds to a minute stop and scrap down the sides. It will seem like forever, but within about 10-12 minutes you will have nice creamy cashew butter. If you’d like your cashew butter a little thinner then add 1 teaspoon at a time of a neutral tasting oil, blending thoroughly.

Homemade Cashew Butter

Store in glass jar. Makes one cup.

 

Shared On: Allergy Free Wednesday, Gluten Free Fridays, Savoring Saturdays, Healthy Vegan Fridays, Sunday Fitness and Food,

3 Onion Spice Mix (Gluten Free/ Sodium Free)

Happy April showers! Well they are better than snow and April showers are supposed to bring May flowers. Right? Well I sure hope so! Even though this winter was no where near as harsh as some other winter, the cold dreary weather has sure been hanging on. My poor crocuses keep dying off before of the layers of snow. Oh well… Hopefully spring is finally in the air!

Alright I’m done complaining! Years ago I would buy many different types of spice mixes. Unfortunately, many of them either have gluten or yeast in the them or are filled with sodium. Now I make pretty much all my own spice mixes. Here is my taco seasoning. Yes I will continue to share more as time goes on.  After your mixes are made it is very easy to go into your cupboard and grab them, just as you would with the commercial varieties.

3 Onion Spice Mix

3 Onion Spice Mix (Gluten Free/ Sodium Free)

1/3 c. dry minced onion

1/3 c. onion powder

1/3 c. dried chives

Mix all your spices together in a bowl. Store in a jar or sealed bag for up to six months.

Shared On: Allergy Free Wednesday

Black Bean & Veggie Bowl (Gluten Free/ Dairy Free/ Vegan)

So we have Meatless Mondays. We have people telling us that we should have a bunch of protein at breakfast time. We are always looking for something different for lunches. We are also looking for a dish that we can feed our vegan friends.

Black Bean & Veggie Bowl

This dish is everything rolled into one. It is packed with tons of protein along with great vegetables and wonderful flavour! Have it for any meal of the day!

Black Bean & Veggie Bowl

Black Bean & Veggie Bowl (Gluten Free/ Dairy Free/ Vegan)

1 Tbsp. olive oil

1 medium sweet potato- peeled and diced

1 medium carrot- peeled and diced

1 medium onion- diced

1 medium pepper- dice (your choice of colour)

2 c. cabbage- chopped

1 handful of spinach or kale ripped into small pieces

1 tsp. ground cumin

1-19 oz. can black beans- drained and rinsed

sea salt and pepper to taste

In a large skillet, add olive oil sweet potato and carrot. Saute on medium heat with lid for five minutes, stirring every couple of minutes. Add in onion, pepper, cumin and cabbage. Mix well. Saute for another ten minutes. Add kale and beans. Cook for five more minutes then serve. Leftovers can be kept in a sealed container in the fridge for up to three days.

Shared On: Allergy Free Wednesday, Gluten Free Fridays, Healthy Vegan Fridays, Savoring Saturdays, Sunday Fitness and Food, What’s For Dinner

 

Ginger Sesame Oriental Cabbage Salad (Paleo/ Grain Free/ Gluten Free/ Dairy Free)

Yes spring has started which means that bikini season will be here before we know it. Hmm, that means less bulky sweaters more salads… So you’re quite tired of the regular salads. So am I. I’m tired of just having mixed greens with veggies. So I figured that I could make some oriental salad, but it’s not very healthy with those ramen noodles, besides the fact that they aren’t gluten free. No worries, we’ll just leave them out. Don’t you worry, this salad has so much flavour and crunch that you won’t miss them.

Ginger Sesame Oriental Cabbage Salad

This salad has also been made into a super healthy salad by using half kale with the cabbage. The ginger sesame dressing tastes fantastic! Now you can easily take this salad to a gathering and listen to everyone rave about how delicious it is! You can also chop up all the vegetables on Sunday so that you can enjoy this salad all week long. Just don’t add the almonds or dressing until that morning.

Ginger Sesame Oriental Cabbage Salad

Ginger Sesame Oriental Cabbage Salad (Paleo/ Grain Free/ Gluten Free/ Dairy Free)

4 c. chopped cabbage

4 c. chopped kale

4 green onions- sliced

1 medium carrot-peeled and grated

2 ribs of celery- chopped

1/3 c. sliced almonds

1/2 c. ginger sesame dressing

Mix all the vegetables together in a large bowl. If making the whole salad to consume in the next couple of hours mix in almonds and dressing. Store salad in sealed container in the fridge for up to five days.

Ginger Sesame Oriental Cabbage Salad

If you’d like to enjoy this salad at work over the next five days then do not add dressing or almonds until that morning. In the morning, put a little dressing into the bottom of your lunch size container, top with almonds. Do not mix until you’re ready to eat.

 

Shared On: Allergy Free Wednesday, Gluten Free Fridays, Healthy Vegan Fridays, Savoring Saturdays, Sunday Fitness and Food

Lemon Cake With Lemon Cashew Icing (Gluten Free/ Dairy Free/ Vegan/ Refined Sugar Free)

Spring is in the air and Easter in this Sunday! For some reason spring and lemon seem to just go together. I think that it’s the freshness of the lemon that makes me think of spring. We went for a wonderful walk along the creek behind our house yesterday. You can just start seeing little bits of green popping up.

Lemon Cake with Lemon Cashew Icing

Everything starts to grow in the spring. Everything becomes new and fresh! Spring flowers are poking up out of the ground to show that all of nature is coming alive again! I see the dove and robins that will be mommas soon with their big bellys.

As I said, I really do associate lemon with the freshness of spring. Whether you are sharing this cake with your family at your Easter meal, or just having a piece with a friend, enjoy. Enjoy all that it and spring have to offer!

Lemon Cake with Lemon Cashew Icing

 

Lemon Cake With Lemon Cashew Icing (Gluten Free/ Dairy Free/ Vegan/ Refined Sugar Free)

To make Lemon Cake:

1 1/2 gluten free flour mix

1 tsp. baking powder

1 tsp. baking soda

3/4 tsp. xanthan gum

1/4 tsp. sea salt

1/2 c. coconut oil

1/2 c. unsweetened apple sauce

2 eggs (or two gel eggs if vegan**)

juice from lemon (1/4c.)

zest from one lemon

1 1/2 c. xylitol (or desired granular sugar of choice)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees

In a small bowl, whisk together gluten free flour, xanthan gum, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Set aside.

In a larger bowl beat together coconut oil, apple sauce, eggs, and sugar. Then add dry mixture. Beat until smooth.

Pour batter into greased baking pan. Bake for 40-43 minutes for 9″x13″ pan or 26-30 minutes for 8″ pan or until tooth pick comes out clean.

Let cool and top with Lemon Cashew Icing. Recipe below.

To make Lemon Cashew Icing:

1 c. raw cashews soaked in water for at least four hours

juice from lemon (1/4c.)

zest from one lemon

1/8-1/4 c. water

Drain water from cashews. Place all other ingredients into high powered blender. Blend until very smooth adding extra water if necessary.

Lemon Cake with Lemon Cashew Icing

Frost your cake as desired. Keep remaining cake in a sealed container on the counter for up to two days. Freezes well.

Lemon Cake with Lemon Cashew Icing

**To make two gel eggs mix together 2 Tbsp. ground chia with 6 Tbsp. water. Let sit for five minutes. Add in when eggs are called for in recipe.

Shared On: Allergy Free Wednesday, Gluten Free Fridays, Savoring Saturdays, Healthy Vegan Fridays, Sunday Fitness and Food