Organic Coconut Popcorn

Organic non-gmo tri-colored corn kernelsDo you know what’s in that bag of popcorn you put in the microwave? Are you ready for the answer?

1. Diacetyl: It is used a s a flavoring in microwave popcorn. It can obliterate the airways, and lungs if exposed to too much. It was used in World War I, to do exactly that. Factory works who are exposed to the chemical have irreversible lung damage.

Brown University documented three cases of bronchiolitis obliterans (caused by diacetyl) in microwave popcorn lovers. One man, 47, ate three bags a day, and needed a lung transplant. A 56 year old coughed up blood one day, and he ate 3 bags of microwave popcorn a day.

The University of Minnesota reported that the chemical diacetyl, can pass the blood-brain barrier, and weaken the brain’s defenses against the formation of amyloid plaques, causing Alzheimer’s.

2. Perfluorooctanoic Acid: Most manufacturer’s  line the microwave popcorn bags with perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) to keep grease from leaking out. When the bags are heated, they leach the PFOA into the popcorn.

3. Tertiary Butylhydroquinone (TBHQ): This chemical is made from butane, a known toxic gas. Medical studies have reported that just eating 1 gram could cause ADHD in children, asthma, allergies, dermatitis, and dizziness. It’s been associated with stomach cancer in laboratory animals.

Most of the corn in the U.S.A., about 86% is harvested from GMO seeds. We also noted, microwavable popcorn is not sold in health food stores. But you can buy lose non-gmo corn kernels, or in jars, and that brings us to our featured recipe: Organic Coconut Popcorn. Here is what you will need.

heating coconut oil

Heat 3 tablespoons of refined coconut oil in a 3 quart pan over medium heat. Let oil solids melt. From 1/3 cup of organic popcorn kernels, add 4 kernels to heated oil and cover pan with lid. When the kernels pop, remove pan from heat and add the 1/3 cup of kernels to pan in an even layer. Return lid to pan and count to 30. Return pan to heat and wait for kernels to start popping. Once they do, gently shake pan over heat. When you no longer hear any popping remove pan from heat and add popcorn to a serving bowl.

melting butterWith pan still hot, add organic pasture fed cows butter or organic virgin coconut oil, and melt. Next pour over popcorn and mix in. You can also add Himalayan salt, organic smoked paprika, or organic Parmesan cheese.

Organic Coconut Popcornpopcorn pan not burned using coconut oilFollow this method and ever kernel of popcorn will always pop evenly and not burn, not even the pan. You can never say that about those chemical filled microwave popcorn bags.

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Organic BBQ Hot Dogs and Potato Pack

BBQ Hotdogs and Potato PackPreparing your Independence Day (July 4th USA) is always done with either a party, picnic, or a cookout, at which you may try to make easy to have in the backyard, at the park or by the water. Here is an easy and fast way to accomplish that, with our featured recipe: Organic BBQ Hot Dogs and Potato Pack.

You can easily prepare these at home before you leave to the park, or beach. For each serving, you steam 9 to 10 mini colored potatoes (about 40 mini potatoes for a serving of 4), just until a fork can insert with no problem.

preparing BBQ Hotdogs and Potato PackNext, using heavy duty foil, cut a piece 12 inches X 18 inches long. Place a cooked uncured organic all beef hot dog in the center, and arrange 9 to 10 of the small  steamed potatoes around the hot dog. For each packet you will add 3 to 4 tablespoons of diced onion (optional), 1/4 to 1/3 cup of  shredded cheese, of your choice, and pour an organic barbecue sauce over the top.

Foil wrapped BBQ Hotdogs and Potato Pack in a BBQ

Fold foil to form a tent around the food, making sure it is closed tight. Place into your ice cooler, until ready to barbecue at the park or beach.

Foil wrapped BBQ Hotdogs and Potato Pack in a BBQ basketHeat your barbecue grill to medium. Now place your foiled tent wraps in a barbecue basket and place on the warm grill. Close the lid and let the food heat through for about 10 to 12 minutes.

BBQ Hotdogs and Potato PackUsing a pair of barbecue tongs, remove the tent wraps and place each on to individual plates. Open the wraps, top with more cheese (optional) and allow to cool, serve and enjoy.

Organic BBQ Hot Dogs and Potato Pack

1 pound organic colored mini potatoes

4 uncured organic beef hot dogs

1/2 cup diced organic white or purple onion

1 cup shredded organic cheese, your choice

1/2 to 1 cup of organic barbecue sauce

Divide potato wedges among four pieces of heavy-duty foil (about 18 in. square). Top each with a hot dog, onion wedges and cheese. Drizzle with barbecue sauce. Fold foil around mixture, sealing tightly.

Grill covered over medium heat 10-12 minutes or until heated through. Using a pair of barbecue tongs, remove from heat to individual plates. Open foil carefully to allow steam to escape. Top with more cheese, if desired.

(Recipe adopted from June/July 2013 Taste of Home Magazine – rearranged to fit our pallet)

 

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BBQ Garlic Lemon Vegetable Platter

BBQ Garlic Lemon Vegetable Platter

BBQ Garlic Lemon Vegetable Platter

If only we could include the smell, of those vegetables barbecuing. You’ll just have to prepare this featured recipe to enjoy that smell.

Grilling vegetables is really easy and a lot of fun. Barbecuing gets you outside to enjoy fresh air. Put on a little music and enjoy the view of your garden. If you bbq in the sun, you’re getting your daily dose of vitamin-D as well.

The general rule to BBQ your vegetables is to cut them into pieces that will cook quickly and evenly. All the cut pieces should be of consistent thickness and no more than about 3/4 to 1 inch thick. Most will soak their cut vegetables in cold water for about 30 minutes before grilling them to keep them from drying out.

BBQ vegetables are meant for entertaining, and grilling them brings out their natural sweetness, and the the seasoning mix or marinade adds a real punch of flavor your palate is sure to enjoy every time.

Let’s get started with our featured recipe: BBQ Garlic Lemon Vegetable Platter with a Avocado Greek Yogurt Dipping Sauce. This vegetable platter makes for a great appetizer to keep your guests happily waiting while you finish up the main course.

Avocado vinaigrette and Garlic Lemon seasoningHere is what you will need.

1/2 pound green beans, fresh, trimmed

1 medium sweet potato, cut french fry style, 1 inch thick (option to remove or leave peel on)

1 each red, yellow, purple carrots, medium size, cut into strips, 1 inch thick (option to remove or leave peel on)

2 teaspoons garlic lemon seasoning (we purchased the seasoning at Whole Foods Market)

1/8 to 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

1 to 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

Dipping Sauce

1/2 cup of Cindy’s Kitchen “Fresh Avocado Vinaigrette” (purchased at Whole Foods Market)

4 or 5 tablespoons greek yogurt, with full fat

Seasoned Vegetables for BBQ Garlic Lemon Vegetable PlatterLine your BBQ grill with some aluminum foil, put grill into place, and heat the grill with your favorite method (chips, charcoal, or gas). While waiting for grill to heat, in a large mixing bowl add the oil, vinegar, and seasoning. Next add the cut vegetables and mix until well coated.

After preparing the vegetables (no we did not soak them in water, as the grill is foil lined they are not exposed to the flame) spread out the season coated vegetables onto the hot grill, then turn down fire (if using gas).

Grill the vegetables, turning occasionally, for about 7 to 8 minutes (if using gas). Do not overcook, as the vegetables can dry out, and will become flimsy, which you do not want. You want your vegetables cooked, but still firm and with some crunch.

Remove BBQ vegetables to a plate, and set aside to cool some while preparing the dipping sauce.

BBQ Garlic Lemon Vegetable Platter -close upTo a medium mixing bowl, add the avocado vinaigrette and greek yogurt, and mix until well blended. pour into a smaller bowl that will fit in the middle of a round platter with vegetables arranged around it.

Serve this prepared platter as a side dish or an appetizer to entertain your guests as they arrive, or even put it on your Sunday Brunch menu.

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Breaded Coconut French Toast

Breaded Coconut French Toast

The night before the plan was to have french toast the next morning with slices of sourdough and real maple syrup. The next morning the plan was followed through, but first a cup of coffee was enjoyed and a little of the Today Show.

For their recipe segment, they had featured taking restaurant favorites and making them healthier eating. They took the “Chicken Nuggets” recipe you buy at McDonald’s and made it into a healthier choice, “Coconut Breaded Chicken Nuggets.” Seeing that had given inspiration on how the planned breakfast that included french toast was going to be prepared.

Therefore our featured recipe: Breaded Coconut French Toast, and here is what you will need.

Keep in mind this recipe is not just great for breakfast, but can also be included as an item on your Sunday Brunch Menu.

The amounts of each ingredient will depend on how many you are serving.

1/4 cup coconut butter, divided

2 large eggs

1/2 cup coconut milk

4 slices of sourdough bread

1 cup dried shredded coconut

Real Maple Syrup

melting coconut butterIn a pie plate mix the eggs and coconut milk. In a separate pie plate add the dried coconut. Next heat a medium sized ceramic coated pan over medium-heat. Add some coconut butter and let melt.

dipping slice of sourdough in egg-coconut milk batterNext take a slice of the bread and liberally dip it into egg-coconut milk batter coating both sides. Next coat both sides with the dried coconut.

cooking slice of coconut breaded french toastNext add the breaded coconut slice of bread into the heated pan. After about a minute and a half turn slice of bread and continue cooking.

Breaded Coconut French ToastWhen all slices of bread are coated and cooked, plate, pour on real maple syrup, top with more dried coconut, and enjoy your Breaded Coconut French Toast for breakfast or brunch.

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Sourdough Bread Day – No Fooling

Sourdough Bread Day - No Fooling

Did you know  the way sourdough bread is prepared helps improve its nutrition value?  The sourdough starter as it is called, pre-digeststarches, making the bread more easily digestible.

Because of this it lowers insulin response, thus improving glucose tolerance. The pre-digested starches helps protect Vitamin B-1 from the damage of the heat will the bread is being baked. The pre-digested starches also break down the gluten, resulting in a bread that gluten-sensitive people can eat.

The process also breaks down phytases which free up minerals for better absorption,  such as zinc, iron, magnesium, copper, and phosphorus.

Don’t be FOOLED into believing folic acid is better for you, as it is the synthetic form of folate, and folate is made in nature and is bio-available to the body.

One medium slice of sourdough has 95 micrograms of folate, which is 24% of the daily required amount needed for good health. Lack of folate in the diet would make you more susceptible to developing cancer, age-related vision loss, hearing loss, and heart disease.

So this April first (2015) enjoy a slice or two of sourdough bread, and We’re Not Fooling.

Grilled Brussels sprouts with baconEnjoy sourdough with – Grilled Brussels sprouts and Bacon

1 pound Brussels sprouts cut in half, cooked, either rosasted or grilled

1/2 pound of bacon, cooked

6 slices of sourdough bread, if using longer slices cut in half

Grill or roast prepared Brussels sprouts. In a medium bowl mix with cooked, chopped bacon.

Warm the slices of sourdough bread, and top with the grilled Brussels sprouts and Bacon.

Enjoy!!

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Turkey Avocado and Dill SandwichEnjoy sourdough with – Turkey Avocado and Dill Sandwich –

4 slices deli smoked turkey

2 eggs fried, yolk cooked

1 avocado, medium, peeled, pitted and sliced

3 or 4 fresh sprigs of dill

1/2 cup fresh baby spinach leaves

Sweet Tomato Chutney – Click here for recipe

Spread sourdough with chutney. Next layer with one or two turkey slices, add fried egg, avocado slices, and top with a sprig of dill and some baby spinach leaves.

Enjoy this sandwich for Sunday brunch, breakfast or lunch.

Stop Fooling around and get to the kitchen and prepare your sourdough bread with either Grilled Brussels sprouts and Bacon or Turkey Avocado and Dill Sandwich.

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Apple Whole Wheat Bread Strata with Cream Cheese Glaze

Apple Whole Wheat Bread Strata with Cream Cheese Glaze

Strata or stratta is a layered casserole dishes founded in American cuisine.

Strata is most commonly found among other prepared brunch dishes or recipes. Strata is compared to a quiche or frittata, made from a mixture which mainly consists of bread, eggs and cheese, including cream cheese.

Some bakers or cooks have even prepared strata with meat or vegetables.

Now for our featured recipe: Apple Whole Wheat Bread Strata with Cream Cheese Glaze, and here is what you will need.

Ingredients for the strata:

1 -24 oz. loaf of 100% whole grain bread

3 medium baking apples, peeled, cored, and sliced into 1/4-inch wedges

8 large eggs

2 cups whole milk

1/3 cup lightly packed dark brown sugar

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon nutmeg

Ingredients for the glaze:

3 ounces cream cheese

2 tablespoons honey

2 tablespoons whole milk

1/2 teaspoon vanilla

 

Line the bottom of a 9 x 9-inch glass or ceramic baking dish with organic parchment paper, and brush the sides with organic unsalted butter.

Unpack the bread, and use all of the slices less the ends. Cut the crust off each piece, and set the crusts aside.

Line the bottom of the prepared baking dish with half of the crust-less bread. Layer apple slices on top of bread, and layer remaining bread slices over the apple.

In a medium bowl, mix the eggs, milk, brown sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Whisk until well incorporated. Pour the egg mixture over the apples and Apple Whole Wheat Bread Strata with Cream Cheese Glaze - slicebread. Cover the baking dish with aluminum foil, and refrigerate a 1 to 2 hours, or longer (If you wish you can remove strata after refrigerated time, leaving foil over dish, and let set for 30 minutes before baking).

Heat Oven to 350 degrees.

If you haven’t already done so, remove strata from the refrigerator, and place into heated oven with foil still over the dish.

Bake for 35 minutes, if the strata was room temperature or for 45 minutes if coming straight from the refrigerator. Remove foil, and bake for additional 15 minutes.

In a small sauce pot over medium heat, mix cream cheese, honey, milk, and vanilla. Continue to stir until cheese is melted and glaze is formed. Pour glaze over warmed strata. Spread glaze with back of a wooden spoon until evenly distributed.

Let sit 10 minutes. Sprinkle with organic powered cinnamon, and serve with apple slices and blueberries if desired.

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Baked Beets and Sweet Potato Chips

Baked Beets and Sweet Potato Chips

Our featured recipe or snack can be considered a vegetarian or vegan snack. But please don’t shy away, if you enjoy eating meat and vegetables, this is a snack for you as well.

Benefits of the Featured Root Vegetables

One ounce of beet and sweet potato chips has 1.37 milligrams of vitamin-E, which helps protect your cells from the damage of oxidation, which otherwise can increase your risk of heart disease and cancer. This amount of vitamin-E is 9% of the 15 milligrams of vitamin-E you need each day. Veggie chips also have small amounts of iron, potassium, vitamin-C and vitamin-K.

If you do buy your veggie chips prepackaged, you will find they are baked with canola oil and 101 milligrams of sodium, unless you buy sodium free chips. Even if the canola oil is non-gmo and cold-pressed, it is still a omega-6 oil. This fatty acid can cause inflammation and in time bodily pain in the areas were the inflammation persists.

You could make a healthier snack by baking your own veggie chips. Making your own veggie chips is a smart way for you to create your own nutritious snack. It is really simple, just drizzle olive oil or avocado oil over thinly sliced vegetables, such as beets and sweet potatoes. You can sprinkle them with dried herbs, spices and Himalayan salt (optional) and roast them until they’re crunchy.

Here is what you will need for the featured recipe snack:

2 medium sweet potatoes

3 small beets

1/2 cup avocado oil

Preheat oven to 400 degrees

washing and preparing root vegetables for Baked Beets and Sweet Potato ChipsWash your root vegetables thoroughly. Then cut off ends to make flat.

thinnly slicing root vehetables for Baked Beets and Sweet Potato ChipsNext, using a mandolin on thin slice, pass root vegetables over slicer, until all are sliced.

avocado oil to coat root vegetablesNext, place sliced root vegetables into a large bowl and add 1/2 cup of avocado oil and toss till vegetables are well coated. At this time you can add other flavors, like sugar and cinnamon, or a little Himalayan salt, if you wish. The flavor is your choice, so be creative. Note though, these root vegetables do bake up sweet. Adding a flavor is just a added delicious bonus.

placing prepared root vegetables on a grill rack over a cookie sheet to bakeNext, place a wire rack onto a cookie sheet. Place slices over wire rack. It is okay if they are touching. Now with my first batch, I found out the sweet potatoes bake in less time, were as the beets need longer baking. Contrary to the image, bake your beets first for 30 minutes. Then bake your sweet potatoes next for 20 to 25 minutes. If the sweet potatoes bake beyond 25 minutes, they start to burn.

Baked Beets and Sweet Potato Chips

When chips are done, remove from oven and put aside to cool. Once all baked chips have cooled plate and serve. Place left overs in an air tight container. Beware if you have others in the house at the time of baking your chips, you will not end up with, what you started with. Just a little hint. Enjoy!!

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