Monday, April 28, 2014

Fresh Vanilla Chia See Pudding

Well, the CrossFit open came and went this year. A handful of the women at our gym participated. We didn't have any expectations or goals of making it to regionals. We simply wanted to be in the sandbox and play with the big kids. It was awesome. Many of our members found they were stronger than they thought and had skills they didn't know existed. It was also amazing to see the women at our box support each other! So often our worst critiques come from other women, but not at our gym. So at the end of the 5 weeks, my friend and I hosted a brunch to celebrate. One of the ladies brought this recipe and it just about changed my life. So stinkn' easy and so versatile! Not to mention bowl licking good! I have been having fun changing up the ingredients and toppings, and I am sure you will do the same. 

Vanilla Chia Seed Pudding
1 1/4 cups coconut milk
2 tablespoons maple syrup
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/4 cup chia seeds
1. Add ingredients to a bowl or a Tupperware dish.
2. Mix together. 

3. Refrigerate minimum 3 hours or overnight.
*Lemon option: Add 1/8 tsp zest and 1 tsp lemon juice 
Enjoy the pudding alone, or with fruit on top. Canned pineapple makes for an easy addition. Pictured here, I used some fresh strawberries. You really can't go wrong!

Monday, April 21, 2014

Fresh Bacon Clam Chowder

My husband is a big clam chowder fan. Being from the Seattle area enjoying chowder is a rite of passage. Truth is, I have never been a big fan. That is until this recipe happened. My friend posted a seafood chowder and I modified to to a clam version, and of course I added bacon, because . . . bacon. . .obviously. The result brought me to the chowder enjoying side of life, and now I can claim my Seattleite status with pride.
* Compared to some of my other recipes this takes a bit more prep time, but you won't be sorry. It is worth it!

Fresh Bacon Clam Chowder
3 tbsp olive oil
1 large onion diced
3 cloves garlic minced
3 large carrots sliced
1 package of bacon
4 cups chicken or seafood stock
1 can full fat coconut milk
1 tbsp chopped parsley
1 51oz can clams
2-3 tbsp arrowroot powder
salt and pepper to taste
cauliflower mash made from 2 heads of cauliflower (click here for directions)

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. 

1. Line a baking sheet, with a lip on it, with foil. 
2. Lay out strips of bacon on the foil. 
3. Bake for 20 min. 
4. When bacon is done, remove strips from sheet and set the sheet aside so that the grease can cool. This will allow you to wod up the foil and the grease at the same time creating a super ease clean up. 
5. Chop bacon into bits.

1. As bacon is cooking, heat oil over med-high heat. 
2. Add onion and cook for 3-5 min. 
3. Add garlic and carrots and cook a few min more until the carrots just start to soften. 
4. Add stock and coconut milk, whisk until combined. 
5. Add salt and pepper to taste and bring to a simmer for 5 min.
6. Ladle out about 1/2 cup of the juice and add the arrowroot powder. This will allow you to mix the powder completely so there are not any chunks. 
7. Return this mixture back to the pot. 
8. Add parsley, clams and bacon. Bring to a simmer for 2-3 minutes. 
9. Pour chowder into a 9x13 baking pan. 
10. Gently spoon cauliflower mash over the top of your chowder. Some will feel like it is sinking, but some will remain on the top. Smooth out the top as best you can. 
11. Bake for 10 min. 
12. Turn broiler on and broil for 3-5 min. 
13. Let stand for a few min before serving. 
14. ENJOY!!

Friday, April 18, 2014

Fresh Cauliflower Mash

This recipe is so easy I decided to include it in my Friday tips, not as a recipe. It is simple and can be used as a foundation for another meal or as a delicious side. 
*Stay tuned for an upcoming Bacon Clam Chowder that will knock your socks off. 

Fresh Cauliflower Mash
2 heads cauliflower
1/2 cup full fat canned coconut milk
salt and pepper to taste
optional: 2 tbsp butter or ghee

1. Wash and chop cauliflower into large pieces 1-2 inches should do the trick. 
2. In a large pot bring steam cauliflower until tender- about 10 minutes. 
3. Drain cauliflower
4. If you have an immersion blender, put cauliflower back into pot with coconut milk, salt, pepper and butter (if using). Blend until cauliflower is smooth. You may need to add more milk if necessary. (You can also use a hand masher)
5. If you are using a food processor follow simply add all ingredients to the food processor and blend until smooth.