There are many different buzz words that explain this phenomenon: flexitarian, semi-vegetarian, and week day vegetarian; where you only eat meat on the week-ends. But anyway you want to say it, you are cutting back on the meat you eat. Some do it for health reasons, animal rights, the environment or all of the above!

Removing high fructose corn syrup and preservatives from our table.
This is my on-line recipe book with my adventures into finding healthy food for my family to eat....
Trying to cook more from scratch with less prepared foods.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Cheesecake cupcakes

3/4 cup graham cracker crumbs
 1/4 cup chopped pecans
3 tablespoons butter, melted
3/4 cup fresh raspberries, crushed
1/2 (8 ounce) package cream cheese
10 1/2 fluid ounces sweetened condensed milk
1 cup frozen whipped topping, thawed

Line a 12 cup muffin pan with paper cup liners. In a medium bowl, combine graham cracker crumbs, crushed pecans and melted margarine, mixing well to blend. Spoon mixture evenly into a 12 cup muffin pan lined with paper cup liners. Press mixture with a spoon to firm bottom.

Puree raspberries and set aside

Beat cream cheese until fluffy. Add condensed milk and 1/2 cup of the raspberry puree and mix until well blended. Fold in whipped topping. Spoon evenly into baking cups.

Freeze for at least 5 hours.

When ready to serve, remove paper liners. Invert cakes onto individual serving plates. Drizzle remaining raspberry puree over cakes. Garnish with a few whole raspberries. Serve frozen.


Fire up the grill!

So yea I am posting a few ok a bunch of grilling ideas and recipes... so why not desert.

Grilled angel food cake or grilled pound cake.

Just butter thick slices of cake and butter both sides. Cook on medium hot grill about 5 to 6 inches away from coals. Watch closely they burn easy. Cook until you see grill marks.

Unlike the TV cooking shows I find that it seems to me that you realy don't need a hot fruit sauce to pour over these. Maybe some cold fruit like strawberries that have made thier own sauce after you add sugar, or some grilled fruit for on top......


Sunday, July 25, 2010

Learn something new everyday...

So this week-end we went to the peanut shop got a big bag of peanuts as we are cracking them Miss Animal Right looks at me and asked why don't they sell cashews in the shell. Hummm I never saw a cashew in the shell. So we went on line to see what a cashew shell looks like.

We find this pepper looking things with what looks like the cashews on the bottom.... how cool is that. Not what we thought we find. Cashew apples or "marañón" what it is called in Panama.  The locals eat the fruit or make jams or wine from them.  It spoils too quickly to be shipped any where else. Many times the fruit is decaying  before the cashew falls to the ground. It is the seed for a new cashew tree.  So in the botanical sense it is a seed, like sunflower seeds... ok whatever I still get them from pea-nut shop!! Not the seed shop.

The oil around the cashew is very caustic. Workers can get rashes from the shell oil. Much like the rash we see from poison ivy.  But the research team from the Institute of Chemistry-CAS and Department of Forest Products and Paper Science-CFNR at the University of the Philippines Los Baños (UPLB) re finding that maybe they could use this natural extract for pest control. Namely termites. The oil is also being researched as an additive to brake fluid to keep it from breaking down. Plus adhesives, paints and varnishes, insecticides, electrical insulation, and anti-microbials, I didn't find a site that said that this is for sure happening. But it could be possible, just don't quote it as that it is being used today.

So  cashews are roasted in the shell to help release the oils and make the shell brittle  keeping the oils from irritating the skin.

Never too old to learn something new..... gotta love the internet.....


Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Hawaiian Bread

3 to 3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 pkg.(1/4 oz.)active dry yeast
1 can(8 1/4 oz.)crushed pineapple
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 cup butter or margarine
1 medium banana, mashed
1 egg, beaten

In large bowl, combine 1 1/2 cups flour and yeast; set aside. Drain pineapple in a sieve, pressing out as much juice as possible. Reserve juice in a 1-cup measure; add water to make 1/2 cup. Pour juice into small saucepan. Add sugar, salt and butter. Stir mixture constantly over medium-high heat until butter softens. Add juice mixture, banana and egg to flour mixture. Beat 1 minute with electric mixer on low speed. Scrape batter from sides of bowl; beat 2 minutes longer at high speed. By hand, stir in enough remaining flour to make a soft dough. Stir in drained pineapple. Cover bowl with towel; let rise in a warm place, free from drafts, until doubled in bulk, 1 to 1 1/2 hours. Stir down dough. Grease a 2-quart casserole with high sides or a souffle dish. Turn dough into dish. Cover with towel; let rise 45 minutes.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Bake until golden brown, 30 to 40 minutes. Cool in dish 5 minutes; remove from dish.


Monday, July 19, 2010

A Ok Sauce

0h Yea the vegetarian loves the taste of A Ok sauce know by another brand name so I found this. We can always use a recipe like this for after we run out

1 c. ketchup
1/2 c. onion, coarsely chopped
1 clove garlic chopped
1/4 c. water
1/4 c. Worcestershire sauce
1/4 c. lemon juice
1/4 c. white vinegar
2 tbsp. soy sauce
2 tbsp. brown sugar
1 tbsp.  mustard

 Simmer uncovered for 30 minutes. Stir occasionally. It should have the steak sauce thickness.  Cool. Strain into bottle or jar. Refrigerate.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Hawaiian Iced Tea

4 orange pekoe tea bags
1 quart of almost boiling water
1 quart of cold water and ice
1 cup  pineapple juice
1/2 cup of simple syrup or 3/4 cup (or more to taste)  of sugar

Place the tea bags in the almost boiling water. The secret to great tasting tea.
Steep for 2 to 4 minutes. Remove tea bags. Add sugar if using.
Add cold water and ice. Pour into pitcher.
Add pineapple juice and simple syrup.
Chill for a hour before serving.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Simple Syrup

Simple to make!! 

I part water
1 part sugar

Pour water into a sauce pan add sugar.
Heat until sugar is dissolved.
Cool and then bottle.
Will keep for a month in a glass bottle in the refrigerator.
Use in drink recipes.
To sweeten Ice Tea. Iced Coffee.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Grilled Fruit?

I saw some  recipes for grilled fruit and it peaks my interest.  Yea I have done the fruit with meat  skewers before but never thought to grill fruit by itself.  I have to experiment with this....

 First I look around the  web. Some of the things I learned are basic things.
Firm fruits like apples, pears, and pineapple are suppose to be easy to grill. Where softer fruits like mango, papaya, peaches, and nectarines are just heated and need to be watch closely. Bananas, pineapples, peaches, plums, apples, and pears can be cut in half, pitted or cored, and grilled
  I have made banana boats where we put some marshmallow and chocolate pieces in the banana cut lengthwise. Wrap with foil and place in the coals for about 10 minutes to melt the marshmallows and chocolate.  Very sweet.

First thing many people do is marinate the fruit in a liquid. Many times it is a liquor.  Guess that would be for adults only meals.  Tequila pineapple rings anyone? Even Tequila Orange rings. Juicy fruits like citrus  grill better when  cut into thick slices.

After grilling there are different things that people sprinkle on. The most popular is  brown sugar or cinnamon and sugar. But you can use whatever you like.  I have seen recipes calling for hot sauce.  Ok. Tech just might like that....

Do you grill fruits? What is your favorite grilled fruit recipe?

Monday, July 12, 2010

Ice Cream Sandwiches


1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted, plus more for pan
1/2 cup sugar
1 large egg
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup all-purpose flour (spooned and leveled)
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
2 pints ice cream (any flavor), softened

1.Preheat oven to 350. Butter a 15-by-10-inch jelly-roll pan; line with parchment paper, leaving a 2-inch overhang on the two shorter sides.
2.In a medium bowl, whisk together butter and sugar until combined; whisk in egg, vanilla, and salt until combined. Add flour and cocoa, and mix just until smooth. Spread in prepared baking pan. Bake until cake is dry to the touch and edges begin to pull away from the sides, 10 to 12 minutes. Cool completely in pan.
3.Using paper overhang, lift cake onto a work surface. With a serrated knife, halve crosswise. Place one half of cake, flat side down, on a large piece of plastic wrap. Spread with ice cream, then top with remaining half of cake, flat side up. Return ice-cream sandwich to baking pan, and wrap tightly in plastic. Freeze until firm, about 2 hours.
4.Unwrap sandwich; using a serrated knife, cut into 8 rectangles, wiping off blade between each cut. Serve ice-cream sandwiches immediately. (To store, wrap individually in plastic, and freeze up to 1 week.)

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Favorite Pizza Dough

2 1/4 teaspoons of yeast
¼ cup of warm water

1½ cup flour
1 teaspoon salt
¼ cup warm water

Mix together. Add:
½ warm water
1 cup flour

knead on floured board until mixed.
Place in large oiled bowl. Turn oiled side up. Cover and let sit one hour 15 minutes.

Top with pizza sauce, toppings and cheese. Bake at 450 degrees for 25 minutes.


1 package activated dry yeast
1/4 cup lukewarm water (110 to 115 degrees)
1 cup milk
2 tablespoons vegetable shortening
1 teaspoon salt 2 teaspoons sugar
3 cups flour 1 teaspoon baking powder
Vegetable oil for deep frying

Makes about 36 sopaipillas.
Add yeast to warm water, stir to dissolve and set aside. Bring milk to a boil in a small saucepan over medium heat; remove from heat and add shortening, salt, and sugar; cool to lukewarm. Stir in yeast mixture. Sift flour and baking powder together over a large bowl. Pour liquid ingredients into the dry and work into a soft dough. Turn onto a floured board and knead well until smooth and elastic, about 10 minutes. Cover dough with a towel and let rest for 20 minutes. Heat vegetable oil in a medium saucepan over high heat until it reaches 400 degrees. Roll dough to a 1/4-inch thickness and cut into triangles or squares about 3 inches across. Fry in hot oil, 2 or 3 at a time, until browned on both sides. Remove from oil, drain on paper towels, and repeat with remaining dough.
. For dessert, sprinkle while still hot with cinnamon and sugar or serve with honey.

Fried Apples

• 6 large tart green Granny Smith apples
• 1 teaspoon lemon juice
•• 1/4 cup brown sugar
• 1 teaspoon salt
• 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

. In a large skillet, add a small amount of vegetable oil heat until warm not smoking.
 Pour apples evenly into the skillet. Sprinkle with lemon juice, brown sugar and salt.
 Cover and cook over low heat for 15 minutes, until apples are tender and juicy.
 Sprinkle with cinnamon.


Sweet Onion Dressing

A copy cat recipe that I changed for my families dislikes...

• 1/2 cup corn syrup
• 1 tablespoon onion, minced
• 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
• 2 teaspoon white vinegar
• 1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
• 1 teaspoon brown sugar
• 1 teaspoon buttermilk powder
• 1/4 teaspoon lemon juice
• 1/8 teaspoon salt
• 1 pinch black pepper
• 1 pinch garlic powder

 Combine all ingredients in a small microwave-safe bowl.
 Heat mixture uncovered in the microwave for 1 to 1 1/2 minutes on HIGH until mixture boils
 Whisk well, cover and cool.

No  artificial sweeteners or preservatives... like the name brand

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Cowgirl Beans

Note: It is just like the recipe for Cowboy beans but vegetarian style for my "cowgirl"

1 can kidney beans
1 can white beans
1 can pinto beans
1/4 onion minced
small can tomato sauce
1/2 cup ketchup

1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup cold coffee
1/2 cup BBQ sauce

Saute onion in a little vegetable oil. Lightly drain beans, keep some liquid.   Add beans and coffee. Add tomato sauce, ketchup and brown sugar.
Stir and bring to a simmer.

 Add BBQ sauce right before serving. 

Can add vegetarian bacon bits.


Friday, July 2, 2010

Citrus Cleaners

De-greaser Spray

7-8 citrus Peels
2 cups of water

Slice peels into strips and boil in the water for 1-2 minutes or longer. Let cool. Bottle. Works great in the kitchen.

Citrus Vinegar Cleaner

Citrus peels
White vinegar

Place your peels into a jar. Cover with white vinegar. Shake occasionally. Strain and use straight for greasy messes. Use diluted for windows, laundry whitener, floors and surfaces.

Enzyme cleaner

1/4 cup sugar
1 1/4 cups water
3/4 cup citrus peels

Found this at Just Life

Mix sugar and water together in a tight fitting bottle.
Use a air tight plastic container. One that can expand;
Add citrus peels.
Place in a well ventilated area out of direct sunlight. Open once a day for the first month to release the gasses. Push the peels down too. Let sit for 3 months.

The enzyme will turn a dark brown. If it turns black some sugar to start the fermenting process. About the same amount you use to start the enzyme. Plus there maybe a white, black or brown layer on top. That is just the yeast. If the container isn't air tight you might even see flies or maggots. The enzymes will dissolve them.

After the 3 month fermenting strain through cheese cloth.

I am going to try this for those animal accidents, seeing how the product from the pet store also says "natural enzymes"
Plus it is a natural pesticide and insecticide! I have to try that for the garden and inside the home.....