No Need for A Cup — “Milkshake” Recipe and WIAW

I must say I was aghast at how many of you admitted to disliking superhero movies on Friday’s post. Truly I intended the question to be more rhetorical and expected everyone to agree that superhero movies are wonderful. While I do think that some of you are missing out on what is Chris Hemsworth in metal breastplates and locks of gold, I’m also happy that you feel like you can be honest on here without being judged (I only thought *slightly* less of you Thor-haters πŸ˜‰ ).

While we speak of being honest I must also admit to forgetting quite a few promised posts. Today is just one check off the list of several that I will be knocking down. Starting Monday I have plans to tackle them full force, one each week. Today though is all about the food. Since I tend to only post recipes for baked goods, you may have started to think that that’s all my family eats. On the contrary those make up just one or two days out of the weekend and during the work week their days are dessert-less (aka. much more lackluster πŸ˜‰ ). On Friday I showed you a savory recipe involving beef and vegetables that is much closer to what my mom and dad have for supper each night.

Beef and Zucchini Skillet

Another thing that my dad personally consumes multiple times a week is his smoothie. Oh how the man loves his smoothies! When home I (and my mom) are probably asked four times a day if we will make him one. And only about 25% of the time do we say yes.

I posted one of the smoothies on Instagram two weeks ago but I also want to share a version of it on here. While the smoothies that I make do contain fruit and yogurt, they actually are much more “milkshake” like in taste and texture (at least that’s what my dad has led me to believe!)

Peanut Butter and Banana "Milkshake" (Instagram)

The base of the smoothie always includes one or more bananas and some plain organic yogurt. Most often I also add in nut butter and carob powder as well. Here is the recipe that I have been making most recently:

Banana, Nut Butter, Carob "Milkshake" (Paleo and Vegan)

Banana, Carob, Nut Butter “Milkshake”

Grain/Gluten/Wheat-Free, Dairy/Nut-Free Options, Egg-Free, Vegan Option, Paleo/Primal

Makes about 2 1/2 cups (1 or 2 servings)

Ingredients:

  • 2 ripe bananas, sliced and frozen
  • 2/3 cup plain organic yogurt (use coconut to make this dairy-free)
  • 2-4 tbsp nut butter (just a “big scoop!”) (to make nut-free use sunflower seed butter)
  • 2-4 tbsp carob powder (again, I just add a scoop in, no measuring necessary)
  • optional: a splash of vanilla and a dash of sea salt

Banana Soft Serve

Directions:

  1. Place the frozen bananas in the food processor first and blend until creamy and smooth. You may need to use a spoon occasionally to scrape down the sides of the processor to fully incorporate the bananas.
  2. Next add the yogurt and blend.
  3. Now with my base I add in the nut butter, carob powder, vanilla and sea salt. Give it a whirl until it is all one color and thoroughly combined!
  4. Enjoy πŸ™‚

Note: He also likes them with strawberries which I would add instead of the nut butter (1/2-1 cup frozen). But peanut butter and carob is his favorite combination.

Banana, Nut Butter, Carob "Milkshake" (Paleo and Vegan)

***Although the pictures are in a glass, my dad much prefers I just hand him a spoon with the food processor, blade and all πŸ™‚ ***

Are you someone who can drink your smoothie straight out of the food processor or blender? Or do you always have to serve it in a glass? Have you ever eaten your oatmeal straight from the pan, or a lasagna right from the casserole dish? Or does it just not feel “right” unless you eat your serving from a plate or bowl?

I’m definitely an in-betweener on this. While I feel perfectly fine snacking straight out of whatever I cooked/made my food in, I always have to eventually remove it to a plate/bowl/cup to eat my actual “meal.” Otherwise it doesn’t feel legitimate to me… Am I the only one?

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Before I skidaddle, I want to fulfill my promise from Friday and give a quick review of Thor 2.

sustenance-thor-2

Using one of the most frequent words in my vocabulary, it was AWESOME! πŸ™‚

If you enjoyed the first movie you will certainly like this one as well because there is a lot of character development with Thor and Loki. There is also some great chemistry between Jane and Thor which I adored.

If you didn’t like the first movie, I would still encourage you to watch the sequel. After it was over I was explaining to my friend that I can’t pick a favorite of the two because they are just so DIFFERENT. It’s would be like comparing… a smoothie and a milkshake? ( πŸ˜‰ ) Both are amazing but to compare the two is unfair because they have different qualities that don’t crossover.

This sequel was extremely fast-paced and was jam-packed with humor. I don’t think I stopped laughing for more than a minute before Loki made some snarky comment again. Kat Dennings as Darcy Lewis was as hilarious as ever, and the minor characters of Dr. Erik Selvig, the new intern Ian, and of course all of the royalty/warriors from Asgard were wonderful too. The lines were very well written and the back-and-forth dynamic between the characters was perfect. Witty. Visually Stunning….

GO. WATCH. IT.

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Oh, and go check out Jenn’s WIAW party for this week too… πŸ˜‰

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Questions for you:

Just tell me your thoughts!

What I Cooked Up (WIAW)

Good morning and happy What I Ate Wednesday! I’m very excited to share with you all of the things that I cooked up over the weekend for my family members. This time I didn’t even have to break the rules to participate in WIAW because I actually have a food picture for every meal of the day! (Even though they aren’t exactly MY eats… It’s one step closer πŸ˜‰ ).

Thank you to Jenn for hosting WIAW. Be sure to check out the other great bloggers who linked up their daily meals today!

wiaw-breakfast

I feel very confident in saying that there isn’t anything better than a bread-type good for breakfast. Whether it be pancakes or waffles, muffins or bagels, they just have a way of filling that craving that only bread can do. I think that’s probably why there are so many new healthy takes always emerging on breakfast breads. People just love them.

Today I am going to be no different in that here is my newest take on a healthy breakfast bread (adapted from Pencils and Pancakes’ recipe only because I didn’t have all of the ingredients on hand at the time). It’s delicious, high in protein, includes only quality ingredients, and doesn’t contain any added unhealthy sugars! Plus, as always, it’s gluten-free πŸ™‚ For the topping I made a slightly modified (note: sweeter) version of Yeah… Imma Eat That’s frosting recipe. Paired together they are a match made in heaven.

Banana Bread Bake with Nut Butter Frosting

Wheat/Gluten/Grain-Free, Vegetarian, Nut-Free Option, Paleo/GAPS-Friendly, No Sugar Added

Makes 1 large serving for breakfast or 2 smaller servings for a snack

Bread Recipe adapted from Pencils and Pancakes

Frosting Recipe adapted from Yeah…Imma Eat That

Banana Bread Bake with Nut Butter Frosting (Grain-Free with Nut/Dairy-Free Options)

Bread Ingredients:

  • 3 large eggs (preferably organic or cage-free)
  • 1 ripe banana
  • 2 tbsp coconut flour
  • 1 tbsp ground cinnamon
  • dash of sea salt (optional)
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda

Frosting Ingredients:

  • 2 tbsp nut butter (use sunbutter to make nut-free)
  • 1 tbsp honey (or maple syrup)
  • 1/4 cup plain yogurt (use coconut yogurt to make it dairy-free)
  • coconut flour (optional- use if needed to thicken up the frosting if it seems too thin)

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Oil/grease a large ramekin (I used a pyrex 4-cup round bowl like this oneΒ that is around 6 inches in diameter).
  2. Crack the eggs into a food processor and blend until it is one solid color. Meanwhile peel the banana and when the eggs are blended add the banana and blend until smooth.
  3. Then add in the coconut flour, cinnamon and salt. Blend again until fully incorporated.
  4. Now you should add the baking soda, but wait to do this until the oven is fully heated and right before you are ready to pour the batter and bake. You don’t want the baking soda to react and then the mixture to sit for too long. So, once the oven reaches 375 degrees, add the baking soda and blend again for a few seconds.
  5. Pour the batter into the ramekin and place it directly into the oven. Bake for 30-35 minutes until golden brown. The top should spring back to the touch and the edges should begin to look barely darkened.
  6. Meanwhile mix up the frosting in a small bowl. Add a sprinkle of coconut flour if necessary to thicken it up. If using a low fat/fat-free yogurt this may be necessary. Place in the fridge until ready to use.
  7. Let cool for a few minutes, remove onto a plate and top with frosting to serve. (I did not use all of the frosting so you may have some leftover).

Banana Bread Bake with Nut Butter Frosting (Grain-Free with Nut/Dairy-Free Options)

wiaw-lunch

Lucky for you, the rest of the recipes for today’s WIAW have already been posted as well, so no waiting around like usual. This recipe that I made comes from The China Study Cookbook. I shared the recipe excerpt on Monday as part of my (very long) review on the cookbook. Be sure to check it out and make this incredibly easy, vegan meal. And while you’re there, you might as well join the giveaway to win your own copy of the book!

Dominican Beans

Dominican Beans from The China Study Cookbook (Vegan and Gluten-Free)

While the recipe makes multiple servings, it isn’t something that you have to eat right away. We saved about half of the beans for my parents to take for lunch for the week. As for the salad on the bottom, I made just enough for two. If you want the prep to be even quicker you could cut up all of the vegetables ahead of time, assemble the salads as needed, and then just heat up whatever portion of the beans you want for the topping. Easy peasy.

Dominican Beans from The China Study Cookbook (Vegan and Gluten-Free)

wiaw-dinner

Egg in a Squash

This recipe is so fast and simple that it’s no wonder that so many bloggers have tried it in just the few short weeks since Meg at A Dash of Meg posted about it. Egg in a Squash is really just what it sounds like. I took half of a cooked dumpling squash (cooked using this method), cracked in an organic egg, and then baked it at 425 degrees for about 35-40 minutes.

Egg in a Squash

Meg’s original directions call for a slightly shorter cooking time, but for this first try I didn’t want to take any risks so I made sure the egg was thoroughly cooked. If you like runny yolks though, follow Meg’s instructions. I will probably try that next time and see how my Dad likes it.

Egg in a Squash

wiaw-dessert

Apple crisp is basically the quintessential fall dessert (along with pumpkin pie, apple pie, etc. of course πŸ˜‰ ). But really, apple crisp was one of my favorite desserts that our school cafeterias served growing up. I’m not sure what they put in it, but man was it good!

No worries with this one though. All of the ingredients are easily recognizable. Originally this recipe was for pear crisp but I just did a little swapping and made an apple version instead (see below the second picture for my alterations).

Apple Crisp (Grain-Free and Vegan)

Apple Crisp (Grain-Free and Vegan)

I did change a few things from the first recipe, but both are equally amazing. This time I used coconut oil in place of the butter/ghee to make it dairy-free as well as vegan. And obviously I used apples in place of the pears (I only needed 5 apples though versus the 6 pears in the original recipe). Also, I covered the apple crisp in foil for about half of the baking time, as well as doubled the time that I left it in the oven so that the apples got cooked completely. Soft and delicious. If you make it, I’d suggest focusing more on the texture of the fruit for how long it needs to be in the oven, and the look of the crisp for whether or not you need to top it with foil so that it doesn’t burn.

Apple Crisp (Grain-Free and Vegan)

And guess what?! I think I can call this another mission accomplished for my Friday Food Finds #13. It’s been awhile since I’ve been able to say that πŸ™‚ I made 3 out of the 5 recipes from that post so it’s definitely a success. I still have my eye on making the other two and I’ll let you know if I try them.

Friday_Food_Finds-13

My Friday post may be a little shortened this week, and my commenting may be somewhat sporadic as well as I have midterms all week long. Today I have a quiz in Statistics, tomorrow I have a quiz in Business Communications and an exam in Music Cultures, and then on Friday I have an Astronomy exam plus an Accounting quiz. Wow. Typing that out makes me realize how busy I really am going to be! While I may not have much time to post on here, I will for sure be keeping my Instagram updated so follow me on there for my latest life updates πŸ™‚

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Questions for you:

Do you like bready breakfast foods?

Have you entered my giveaway yet?

What is your favorite simple meal?

Peanut Butter and Carob Chunk Cinnamon Rolls (WIAW)

Dang it! I was doing so well with balancing school and blogging then it all caught up with me 😦 It’s not exactly that I don’t have the time although that is part of the equation. It is more like I don’t have the brain capacity. Who knew reading about food, workouts and life required an IQ?

Unfortunately I feel as though I have reverted back to burnt marshmallow brain status. Here’s hoping that today’s post will remedy that a little. Please?!!

friday-launch-marshmallow

My mind these days is constantly swirling with horizontal models, orbital periods, blocking variables, and ups-men-throwing-computer-screens (what?!… check the bottom of my post for more on that πŸ˜‰ ). Oh, and let us not forget the honor beats of Native American Grass Dance songs that haunt my dreams.

wiaw-pb-roll-cat-school

Actually, my dream are crammed full of test nightmares, homework scares and the random celebrity sighting… Hmm, as a therapist would say: “What does that say about my life?” That I’m a stressed out college student who spends way too much time on Yahoo! News and Buzzfeed? (for the record, I have determined that reading those articles for the most part does NOT require an IQ).

My plan was to catch up on some sleep, blogging, comments and the works this weekend but then I forgot about a trip that I was taking. And I may have forgotten to mention it on here too however, in my defense it didn’t seem extremely important to mention it since I went on the same trip last year.

Yes! On Saturday and Sunday I went to the Stratford Shakespeare festival again in Canada! Recap coming next week most likely on Monday (or Wednesday if I can find any food shots of other people’s exciting meals on my phone).

If I have no food to share from the trip though I guarantee that I’ll have something fabulous to write about from this coming weekend when I get to go home. And BAKE. And see my family. And BAKE. And go to a wedding. And…

Bake some more. πŸ˜‰

wiaw-pb-roll-ecard-baking

Priorities people! I have almost run out of my arsenal of recipes because I haven’t been in a kitchen for almost three weeks.

Note that I said almost though and not completely…

wiaw-pb-rolls-collage

Peanut Butter and Carob Chunk Cinnamon Rolls

Grain/Gluten/Wheat-Free, Dairy-Free, Egg-Free/Vegan Option, Nut-Free Option, Paleo/GAPS-Friendly

Makes 9 Cinnamon Rolls

wiaw-nut-butter-cc-rolls-cooked-full

Ingredients:

  • 2 eggs (or 1/2 cup ground flaxseed + 1/2 cup water)
  • 1 ripe banana, mashed
  • 2 tbsp honey (or maple syrup to make this vegan)
  • 2 tbsp coconut oil, melted
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 2/3-1 cup coconut flour*
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 recipe for carob chips
  • “Peanut” butter filling: 2-4 tbsp honey + 1/4 cup nut butter*

Carob Chunk Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup carob powder
  • 1/2 cup melted coconut oil

wiaw-nut-butter-cc-rolls-cooked-side

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. In a small bowl mix up the carob chocolate ingredients and then pour half of the mixture into a small pan to freeze. Set the rest aside.
  3. Combine the egg (or flaxseed + water), mashed banana, honey, coconut oil, and vanilla until well combined.
  4. Then add the 2/3 cup coconut flour and mix well. The dough should be easily formed into a ball but not sticky. Add more coconut flour as necessary to get the proper consistency.
  5. Next mix in the sea salt and baking soda.
  6. Take the dough and place it on a sheet of parchment paper to roll out. I found that using my hands to mold the dough was best and formed a large rectangle that was about 1/4 inch thin approximately.
  7. Mix up the “peanut” butter filling and spread it out evenly over the dough rectangle.
  8. By now the carob mixture should be frozen solid in the freezer (takes about 15-20 minutes on average). Remove the carob bar from the freezer and break it into small chunks.
  9. Sprinkle the carob chunks over the “peanut” butter filling then carefully roll it up. It may be a little difficult if you used the egg version of the recipe, but once it is rolled up you can just form it together with your hands and piece together any tears or holes.
  10. Slice the roll into 9 pieces and place them on a baking sheet covered in parchment paper. Bake for 20-30 minutes or until golden brown (this time is really dependent on if you use eggs vs. flaxseed, how wet your dough is, and the strength of your oven).
  11. Then taking the remaining half of the carob mixture and drizzle it over the rolls. (You can make a DIY pastry bag like I did by pouring the mixture into a ziploc bag and slicing off the tip).

wiaw-nut-butter-cc-rolls-cooked-topped

*Recipe Notes:Β I made this recipe with eggs because I have had a few people ask me about replacing the flaxseed mixture in my other two recipes with eggs. I found that this made the a wetter dough so I had to increase the coconut flour and even doing so made the dough much more difficult to handle. Next time I will probably just go back to the tried and true vegan version! The “peanut” butter for this recipe can be replaced with any type of nut butter that fits your dietary needs. I would recommend sunbutter for the most “peanut”-like taste. Almond butter would work as well!

wiaw-collection-rolls

Just in case you missed my past two cinnamon roll recipes, here they are:

Coconut Flour Cinnamon Rolls

cinnamon-rolls-single-done

Apple Chunk Cinnamon Rolls

wiaw-apple-cinnamon-roll-baked

Now that it’s almost fall I need to get on making some Pumpkin cinnamon rolls!

***Thanks Jenn for hosting WIAW yet again!!***

I almost forgot! Here is the video that I referenced above about the computer monitor-throwing man:


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Questions for you:

Do you like cinnamon rolls?

What kind would you like to try next?

Is your brain like a burnt marshmallow?

What did you do this past weekend?