Monday, July 21, 2014

Banana Bread

Hi friends! 

It's been a busy few weeks. How is it the end of July already???  I'm all geared up to start my fellowship in 2 weeks! Which reminds me, I need to tell you all why I picked this field of medicine. Soon!

In the meantime I wanted to share a new banana bread recipe that I stumbled upon. 
We had a few bananas that were a bit too ripe, and on our nightly dog walk Garret asked if I would make some banana bread. Unfortunately, we didn't have any eggs on head. But no fear! It's easy to sub flaxseed for egg in most recipes. 

To do this, all you need is a small bowl, ground flaxseed, and water.
Use 1 Tbsp flax + 2-3 tbsp water.
Mix together and let sit for about 5 min.
The mixture will sort of gel together and act as the binder in your recipe instead of an egg.
Easy peasy! 

It's great for baking for vegan friends and for those with egg allergies! 
Or, if you are like me and decide to bake at 9 at night and don't feel like running to the store 😉

This particular recipe comes from the lovely Dana at Minimalist Baker. I've tried a ton of her recipes and none of them disappoint! 

I added Enjoy Life chocolate chips and used less honey since the bananas were super ripe (errr almost black).
Since we try not to do a lot of added sugar, I frequently will cut the sugar by a 1/4 to 1/2 in most recipes i find. Most of the time you can't even notice! 

What do you like to add to banana bread? I bet blueberries would be awesome in this one!



Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Coconut Lime Blueberry Smoothie

I don't know exactly when my coconut obsession started, but I'm pretty sure it's here to say. Add lime, and I'm in heaven. Maybe it reminds of a nice island vacation?

I am a big fan of smoothies for breakfast, snacks, post-work out, etc. However, they can be a big sugar bomb if you aren't careful. There are tons of smoothies with juice as a base, but often times I think they are too sweet, so I tend to stay away from those. Especially those you can buy pre-bottled or at a smoothie shop. Too many use frozen yogurt, lots of juice, and who knows what else.

I would rather save money and make my own at home. Using the whole fruit helps increase the amount of fiber you get, and helps keep most of the nutrient value intact. I love adding lots of mix-ins to up the fiber and omega-3/healthy fat content. You can use chia seeds, hemp hearts, or ground flaxseed. It helps give the smoothie a bit more staying power than fruit only.

This smoothie gets its creamy texture from coconut milk and banana, and lots of antioxidants from ripe blueberries. It's filling, not too sweet, and tastes like summer!
Hope you enjoy!

Coconut Lime Blueberry Smoothie
serves 1

1 cup coconut milk (I used 1/2 from a can, and 1/2 from a carton)
1 large handful blueberries
Juice from 1/2 a lime
zest from 1/2 a lime ( you can omit but I think it adds so much flavor)
1/2 banana (more ripe = more sweet)
1 tablespoon flaxseed
ice (optional)

blend all ingredients together, add ice at the end if desired.

What is your favorite kind of smoothie?

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Weekend Update

Why is it that weekends go so much faster than the rest of the week? It seems that is even more true in the summer. Oh well! We made sure to soak up all the sun this weekend . On Friday we met up with friends and family to see Dave Matthews, and it was great as always. Music is so much more fun to listen to at an outdoor venue!

Yay DMB!
P.S. If you like in Ohio and have never been to blossom for a concert. what are you waiting for??

On Saturday I had to work in the morning, and then we did some shopping for a bathroom remodel and grilled outside at home in the evening.
Sunday was spent doing yardwork and then playing beach volleyball. We almost got rained out, but luckily got in all our games. We went 1-2 which is pretty amazing for our team :)

Speaking of outdoors, I've got a recipe for a refreshing summer drink for you to try! 

Cucumber Margaritas
serves 1
3 baby cucumbers, peeled
Fresh lime juice from 1 lime, to taste
1.5 oz blanco tequila
1. 5 oz triple sec or cointreau
agave or simple syrup to sweeten if needed

first, peel and blend cucumbers with a small amount of water. You will get a gorgeous green colored puree that smells amazing.
add all ingredients to a shaker with ice.
shake it!
serve over ice

enjoy responsibly :)

How amazing is that color? All from fresh ingredients with no added preservatives or scary ingredients from a mix. It was so refreshing! I hope you will try it, let me know what you think! I am already dreaming up different purees to make next.