Saturday, December 28, 2013

Coconut and Chia Pancake

This is probably my final pancake creation of the year…. on Christmas Eve morning, I was looking for something a wee bit different from my normal fare. I love my Vanilla and Cinnamon Coconut Pancakes, and this version and this one too, but just wanted something more…

So I added a spoonful of chia seeds to the batter and they not only made it a bit thicker. but really added a nice taste and a bit of crunch, too.  I used 2 eggs in  my batter, but if you want to save a few grams of fat you could use 1/4 cup of egg whites in place of one of the eggs.  Feel free to double the recipe if you want to share with a friend.

Coconut and Chia Pancakes

Coconut and Chia Pancake
Makes 1 serving
  • 2 fresh eggs
  • 2 Tbs coconut flour
  • 1 Tbs chia seeds
  • dash of vanilla
  • dash of cinnamon
  1. Mix everything together and pour into a non-stick pan set over MEDIUM heat.
  2. Allow to cook about 5 to 7 minutes and then flip over and cook second side for about 2 minutes.
  3. Serve with fruit or your favorite syrup, honey, nut butter or yogurt.
Per serving, without topping.

Made with 2 eggs:
Weight Watchers P+ = 8.
Calories 264; Protein 20g; Carbohydrate 16g; Fat 21g; Fibre 12g.

Made with 1 egg and 1/4 cup egg white:
Weight Watchers P+ = 7.
Calories 220; Protein 21g; Carbohydrate 16g; Fat 16g; Fibre 12g.

Dec 24 chia pancakes 001
The batter is quite thick and you may need to spread it a bit.

Dec 24 chia pancakes 002
The second side cooks much quicker than the first.

Dec 24 chia pancakes 004
Served with some peaches, strawberries and mango….

Dec 24 chia pancakes 005
and yes, a bit of syrup!

Other than the Coconut Pancakes that I have already linked to in the opening paragraph of this post, here are some of the other grain-free pancake recipes I created this year:

Mar 19 Easy Flax Pancakes 003

Flax-Coconut Pancake

There are lots of other pancake recipes in my FEATURE RECIPES  - BREAKFAST section as well.  

There are some with oats, some with whole wheat flour and some grain-free with protein powder.  There are almond butter pancakes, ‘Oreo’ protein pancakes, strawberry pancakes, pumpkin pancakes and banana pancakes… to name only a few.  Something for everyone!  Really. Cottage cheese anyone?

Are you pancake lover too?

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Starring Cauliflower!

Looking back over some of my favorite recipes of this past year, as well as some of the most popular posts, it would appear that cauliflower is one of the star ingredients of 2013.

Cauliflower Star

And I am sure it’s true!  As I type this post, I have been getting up every 10 minutes to tend to the huge batch of Cauliflower Tortillas I am baking this morning, and I am going to be eating Cauliflower and Roasted Red Pepper Soup for lunch later today.  It seems barely a day or 2 goes by without my creating some new dish, or reprising an old favorite… and they often seem to have cauliflower in the ingredients list.

Why do I eat so much cauliflower?

It is such a versatile and nutritious vegetable. It can be enjoyed raw in salads or as a crudite with a dip; it is a lovely veggie to include in stews and casseroles with a wide array of spices; it can be chopped in a food processor to various degrees of puree and used in place of rice, or as a base for pizzas, or as the main stay in tortillas; it can be cooked and mashed like a potato or it can be baked and enjoyed like popcorn.  And not to mention that as a Weight Watcher, cauliflower is considered a zero P+ veggie.

It does have a definite fragrance, aroma, okay… smell… when it is cooking.  But don’t let that fool you. The taste is actually quite delicate and really disappears among other, stronger flavors and spices.  If you think you don’t like cauliflower, I would urge you to give it another chance.

Here is my version of a new Cauliflower Pizza Crust that I found at Gigi Eats Celebrities a short while ago… I am sure it would be delicious the way Gigi posted it too…. and if you scroll on down, you will find links to some of my favorite cauliflower recipes of the year.  Good eats!

Cauliflower Pizza Crust with Chia and Nooch

Cauliflower Pizza Crust with Chia and Nooch
Makes 1 pizza crust
  • 2 cups cauliflower, purreed till quite fine
  • 2 large fresh eggs
  • 1 Tbs chia seeds
  • 1 Tbs mixed Italian style herbs
  • 1 Tbs nutritional yeast
  • 3 cloves garlic, peeled, smashed and minced
  1. Preheat your oven to 375° F.
  2. Cover a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  3. Mix all ingredients together in a large bowl and then spread in a circle (or shape of your choice) on the parchment paper, to about 1/2 inch thick.
  4. Bake for 20 minutes then remove from oven.
  5. Cover with your favorite pizza toppings such as tomato sauce or paste, herbs, onions, mushrooms, peppers, tomatoes, ham, artichoke hearts, and the like. 
  6. Return to oven and bake for 10 more minutes.
  7. Remove to plate and serve.
For the whole crust only.
Weight Watcher P+ = 9.
Calories 279; Protein 25g; Carbohydrate 21g; Fat 20g, Fibre 12g.

Dec 4 Cauli pizza crust 001
Mix everything together in a large bowl.

Dec 4 Cauli pizza crust 003
Spread out to about 1/2 thick on baking sheet that has been covered with parchment paper.

Dec 4 Cauli pizza crust 004
Bake for 20 minutes then top with your favorite goodies and pop it back into the oven for 10 more minutes.

Dec 4 Cauli pizza crust 005
Remove from oven and serve.

Printable Recipe

Here are some of my other favorites from the past year…

Cauliflower and Roasted Red Pepper Soup

Low Carb Tortillas

I make these a lot and always have several in the freezer, ready to eat.  They can be left on the counter or thawed in the mike.

Cauliflower Rice

Another real favorite in my kitchen. I only eat rice now if I am having sushi, so some version of this Cauliflower Rice has become a staple.  It can be done so many different ways.

Cauliflower Coconut Soup
with 4 different spice options

Easy Curried Vegetables

Are you a cauliflower fan too?

Would love it if you would leave a link to your favorite cauliflower recipe here in the comments.

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Pork and Zucchini Meatballs in Lettuce Cups

I was really excited to try this recipe when I found it in Chatelaine Magazine a  short time ago… we love all of the ingredients in this recipe so I was pretty sure we would love the final result… and we did.  I made a couple of minor changes so will list the ingredients I used, and the N.I. that I calculated, too.

Pork and Zucchini Meatballs in Lettuce Cups is an easy weeknight dinner. It all comes together very quickly and the biggest decision will be what to serve with it. I made up some fried rice for The Captain and he was really happy with the result!

Look for the leanest pork you can find.  And if you can, look for some Bibb lettuce. The cups will be smaller. I had Romaine on hand so used that. I also used a sweet chili sauce and fat free Miracle Whip instead of mayonnaise… if I had homemade mayo on had, I would have preferred that.

We ate only half of the meatballs and I saved the others for lunch later this week.

Pork Meatballs in Lettuce Cups

Pork and Zucchini Meatballs in Lettuce Cups
Makes 4 servings (4 meatballs each)
  • 1 pound ground pork
  • 3/4 cup shredded zucchini
  • 1 tsp Chinese 5 Spice powder
  • dash of salt
  • 2 tsp coconut oil
  • 8 lettuce leaves
  • 2 Tbs mayonnaise
  • 2 Tbs sweet chili sauce
  • 1/4 cup shredded carrot
  • 2 Tbs mirin or sushi seasoning or rice vinegar 
  1. Mix the ground pork, shredded zucchini, Chinese 5 Spice powder and dash of salt together in a bowl.
  2. Place the coconut oil in a large skillet over MEDIUM-HIGH heat.
  3. Scoop the meat mixture out in 2-Tbs size meatballs and set them in a single layer in the skillet.  You should have 16 meatballs.
  4. Brown the meatballs on all sides then cover and reduce heat to LOW.  Leave to cook about 7 or 8 minutes till juices run clear.
  5. Arrange 2 lettuce cups on each of 4 plates.
  6. Combine the mayonnaise and chili sauce in a small bowl.
  7. Combine the shredded carrot and mirin in another small bowl.
  8. When the meatballs are cooked, place 2 in each lettuce cup and top with chili-mayo and carrots to serve. 
Per serving of 4 meatballs in lettuce cups with sauces.
Weight Watchers P+ = 9.
Calories 347; Protein 20g; Carbohydrate 7g; Fat 26g; Fibre 2g.

Dec 18 Pork meatballs 002

Dec 18 Pork meatballs 003

I was pleasantly surprised that  The Captain was game to pick up the cups and eat them with his fingers… but a knife and fork is certainly not out of the question… they are messy but delicious!

What do you think?  Is this something you might try?

Thursday, December 12, 2013

#MapleVoxBox for Canadian Influensters

Last week I received my first Influenster Vox Box in the mail…had almost forgot I enrolled to be a product sampler!

Dec 4 Maple Leaf Vox Box 002

The #MapleVoxBox

This box was sent to Canadian Influensters and I was quite pleased with the contents:
  • Skinny Cow Milk Chocolate Flavor Heavenly Crisp
  • Skinny Cow Milk Chocolate Dreamy Clusters
  • NYC New York Color Big Bold Curl Mascara
  • NYC New York Color Big Bold Plumping Lip Gloss
  • Broadway Nails imPRESS Press-On Manicure
  • Montagne Jeunesse Clay Spas
  • Ice Breakers Duo
The Captain took the Skinny Cow treats for a test drive and really enjoyed them both… and I am loving the NYC mascara.  I haven’t tried the the gloss or nail art, or the clay facial yet…saving them for a Christmas treat... and we both really like the raspberry-flavored Ice Breakers.

All in all a thumbs up for the #MapleVoxBox from the two of us.

If you are interested in joining Influenster and getting in on some free samples, click on the Influenster logo on the right side bar.

Are you an Influenster?  Have you received any vox boxes?

Wednesday, December 04, 2013

Cauliflower and Roasted Red Pepper Soup

Following along the ‘cauliflower’ theme I seem to have going this week, I decided to pair it with my favorite red vegetable… roasted red peppers.  I love them so much… they are rich in flavor and add a touch smokiness to anything I serve with them.

Do you like to do your own red peppers in our oven or barbecue? I have purchased them… in huge glass jars… the shiny roasted red peppers in the big glass jars always lure me in. I did purchase one once, but could not finish them. Alas, the last half of the jar went to waste, and I always thought they weren’t quite as tasty as the ones I do myself.

I have a post about roasting red peppers… check it out here….

And then clean a head of cauliflower and make this awesome soup!  Thick, naturally creamy and rich.  All it needs is a bit of salt and pepper to your own liking, and you have a hit on your hands.  If your family thinks they don’t like cauliflower… don’t even tell them. That is how I have The Captain loving it… shhhhh…. don’t tell.

Of course I like to use my own turkey or chicken broth too… if you like, use a vegetable broth for a vegan soup.  It’s all good.

Cauliflower and Roasted Red Pepper Soup

Cauliflower and Roasted Red Pepper Soup
Makes 5 servings
  • 2 tsp coconut oil
  • 6 ounces chopped white onion
  • 5 cloves garlic, peeled,smashed and minced
  • 1 large head cauliflower
  • 4 cups chicken stock.
  • 4 medium red pepper, roasted
  1.  Remove the leaves and large centre stem from the cauliflower.  Separate into florests, wash, and set aside.
  2. Melt the coconout oil over MEDIUM heat.
  3. Add the onions and garlic.  Saute until translucent, stirring occasionally, about 6 minutes.
  4. Add the cauliflower and chicken stock. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 45 minutes until cauliflower is soft and cooked through.
  5. Remove from heat, and then add roasted red peppers.
  6. Purree and  then season with salt and pepper before serving.

Per serving.
Weight Watchers P+ = 3.
Calories 85; Protein 4g; Carbohydrate 14g; Fat 3g; Fibre 5g.

Nov 30 Cauli and RRPepper Soup 1 001
Getting everything into the pot…

Nov 30 Cauli and RRPepper Soup 001
And when it’s cooked, puree with your immersion blender.

Sunday, December 01, 2013

Cauliflower Coconut Soup, 4 Ways to Spice it Up

Since I gave up eating grains at the beginning of year, I have been eating a lot of cauliflower!  Lots and lots of Cauliflower Rice and cauliflower-based Low Carb Tortillas.  I had almost forgotten that it is a tasty vegetable to be enjoyed as such.

The Captain has gotten into the habit of buying huge heads of fresh cauliflower whenever he finds them in our local markets, so I am now trying to come up with different ways to use them up!  And because he thinks he doesn’t even like cauliflower himself, I am trying to find ways for him to enjoy it too.

This soup really fills the bill.

Use a veggie broth if you want a vegan option... I like to use homemade turkey broth in mine.

Cauliflower Coconut Soup
Makes 4 servings
  • 2 tsp coconut oil
  • 4 cloves garlic, peeled, smashed and minced
  • 6 ounces chopped white onion
  • 1 large head fresh cauliflower
  • 3 cups chicken stock
  • 1/2 can (200 ml) coconut milk 
  1. Cut the stem and leaves off the head of cauliflower and then break into florets. Wash and set aside.
  2. Melt the coconut oil in a large soup pot over MEDIUM heat and then add the onions and garlic.
  3. Saute about 10 minutes until the onions become translucent, stirring occasionally so they do not brown.
  4. Add the cauliflower and chicken stock.  Simmer for 45 minutes or until cauliflower is cooked through and soft.
  5. Remove from heat and stir in the coconut milk.
  6. Puree with immersion blender or in batches in regular blender, and add a bit of salt to taste.
  7. Serve plain or season to your liking.
This soup is creamy, thick, rich… no strong flavor of cauliflower or coconut, at all.  Just delicious and lovely on your tongue!  I made up a batch of plain soup and then each time I ate a bowl, I changed up the seasonings to see what I could come up with.

The first bowl I ate quite plain, with a bit of fresh cilantro and salt and pepper.

Nov 16 cauli soup 001

I added some crumbled bacon and freshly ground pepper to the second bowl.

Nov 8 cauli soup with bacon 001

I ate the third bowl with a few dashes of curry powder mixed in.


And the fourth bowl, I sprinkled with nutmeg and cloves… a bit of a holiday feel.


The Captain tasted each one and agreed that he would actually like to have a bowl for himself.  Guess I had better get another batch on the stove soon.  His other comment was that it was similar to a potato soup… that is how creamy and thick it is.

And I should add, that it also freezes quite nicely... doesn't change the texture at all.

Per serving.
Weight Watchers P+ = 3.
Calories 128 ; Protein 7g; Carbohydrate 15g; Fat 6g; Fibre 5g.