Veg*n Cooking and Other Random Musings: Flax Seeds
Showing posts with label Flax Seeds. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Flax Seeds. Show all posts

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

"Everything" Granola Bars (Vegetarian)

My first attempt at making granola bars was a few weeks ago. It went so-so - hence why I never blogged about it. The granola turned out and tasted fantastic, but it didn't really work as "bars". I pressed them, let them set, and then removed them from the pan to cut them, at which point, it all fell apart. I was a little disappointed, but it was tasty homemade granola, so I enjoyed it as is, and decided I would try again...sometime...

Time got away from me a little bit, I had other endeavors I wanted to try and honestly, I kind of forgot about them, and got into the habit of buying Herbal Oats granola bars from the farmer's market or The Root Cellar to have for work. Then last week, I picked up a granola bar from the local Uprise Bakery (where we usually get our beloved ciabatta from), and it was the best granola bar I had ever had - seriously - so good. So I saved the label with the ingredients listed on it so I could try again, this time using Uprise's combination of seeds, nuts, and other goodies.

I am happy to say that they not only set and held together, they taste almost just like the granola bars from Uprise. These are a lot cheaper than the $2.50 a pop Uprise granola bars, and I was able to use some local ingredients to make them. And we all know that local ingredients make everything better, right? :-)

I have been enjoying these for my breakfasts at work and Brett has been enjoying them at home - though it seems he is also eating them as snacks too. And Brett isn't a huge nut/seed fan, so his eating them for snacks says a lot about how good they are. I think I might start making my own granola bars for work breakfasts - at least until some California clementines become available. Between the months of November and February, Brett and I almost turn into clementines. I kid you not when I say I was bringing 6-10 to work with me a day and eating them all last year at this time. Now I know clementines are small, but that is a lot of fruit! No wonder I didn't get sick very often last winter!

There I go, off on a tangent again. You would figure I talk people's ears off - Brett yes - but pretty much everyone else gets a fairly mute Jennifer. I guess when I am typing my long-winded nature really shows through. If I wasn't so shy and didn't have such "out there" opinions, I would likely talk it up more, but alas, that is not the case, so you all get to deal with my long-winded typing.

The local booty legend:
no asterisk = grocery store
+ = The Root Cellar
++ = The Peace Nook
* = farmer's market
** = CSA
*** = Container or Community Garden
**** = the non-profit buying club, Blue Planet or Purcell Mountain Farms

"Everything" Granola Bars

1/2 cup sunflower seeds
1/2 cup sesame seeds
1/2 cup chopped pecans *
1/4 cup pumpkin seeds
1/4 ground flax seeds
1/2 cup regular rolled oats
1/2 cup unsweetened coconut flakes
1/2 cup chocolate chips
1/2 cup dried cranberries
1/2 cup honey *
1 cup smooth natural peanut butter +
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
1/2 tsp salt

Preheat oven to 400.

Layer all the nuts and oats except the sesame seeds on a baking sheet.

Toast for 5 minutes. Shake pan and add sesame seeds.

Toast another 3-5 minutes, keep an eye on them so they don't burn.

Meanwhile, combine honey, peanut butter, vanilla, and salt over low heat in a small sauce pan.

In a large bowl, combine the dry and wet mixtures.

Line an 8x8 pan with parchment paper.

Spread mixture in pan and press down firmly to get the granola to stick together.

Cool completely and cut into squares (ours made about 12).

Store in an air tight container for 3-5 days.

These rocked and have made excellent breakfasts. Yum!

'Til next time.

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Chocolate Espresso Orange Cookies (and a grocery store wrap up)

I was in the baking mood today, and I had an idea, so I decided to try it out. I made Chocolate Espresso Orange Cookies. This recipe only makes 10 cookies, as I was just trying to see how they would turn out, but they are fantastic! They are rich, soft and cakey, with a subtle espresso and mild orange flavor.

Chocolate Espresso Orange Cookies
1 cup whole wheat pastry flour
1/3 cup cocoa powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp ground flax seeds
2/3 cup organic vegan sugar
1/3 cup plain hemp or rice milk
1/3 cup applesauce
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
1/2 tsp almond extract
2 tsp orange zest (I used one small organic orange)
1 tbsp instant espresso coffee

Preheat the oven to 350.

Combine flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, salt and flax seeds in a medium bowl.

In a small bowl, combine the rest of the ingredients.

Stir into the dry mixture in batches, using a fork if necessary.

Drop by heaping tablespoons onto a cookie sheet (non-stick or parchment lined). Leave about 1 1/2 inches between cookies. Bake for 10-12 minutes.

Transfer to a cooling rack to cool completely.

So, as I'm sure most of you who have read this blog for any significant period of time know (or those who have looked at the recipe index), I like Mexican food. A lot. It's just my thing. If you don't like Mexican food, this blog is probably not for you. :-) Anyways, I have been working on veganizing authentic, traditional Mexican cusine, trying to keep the integrity of the dish (accenting the herb, spice, pepper, etc. the original recipe does), as well as working on creating recipes for more 'fusion' style dishes. I really like this kind of food so it's fun, we'll see how these recipes turn out. I plan on trying a few of the more 'fusion' style ones this week.

I thought I'd end this post with a little 'grocery store wrap up', maybe it'll give you an idea of what's going to be on the menu. The only things not pictured here are corn tortillas and canned black olives. We're pretty stocked up on dried beans and rice.

Let's see, we've got serrano peppers, 2 organic oranges, a tomato, 2 avocados, jalapenos, a lime, a red bell pepper, about 1lb. of tomatillos, organic mixed baby greens, a red onion, 2 organic jewel yams, garlic, a yellow squash, 2 zucchini, a bunch of organic cilantro. 4 organic Pink Lady apples, 2 organic kiwi, and some habanero peppers.

'Til next time!

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Recipe Index and Oatmeal

First off, I want to give a big thanks to Chandelle for giving me directions on how to create a recipe index and encouraging me to do so before I had so many recipes that it would be a hassle to create one. So thanks to the lovely Chandelle, I now have a recipe index! If anyone is ever interested in going straight to a particular recipe, now all you have to do is follow the link on the right hand side of the page!
For brunch today, Brett and I had coffee and oatmeal. Nothing special I know, but we came up with two new (only to us of course) variations.

Apple Cinnamon Oatmeal (this was Brett's)
1/3 cup regular rolled oats
1 cup plain rice milk
1 small apple, peeled, washed and diced
2 tsp ground flax seeds
3 tbsp agave
2 tsbp brown sugar
a few dashes of cinnamon
1 tsp maple syrup
1 tsp vanilla

Mix all ingredients except oats and bring to a boil. Simmer until apples begin to soften. Add oats, simmer for five minutes.

Remove from heat, let stand five minutes and enjoy!

It's purple!

Mixed Berry Oatmeal (this was mine)
1/3 cup regular rolled oats
2/3 cup plain soy milk
2 tsp ground flax seeds
2 tbsp agave
1 cup frozen mixed berries

Mix all ingredients and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for five minutes.

Remove from heat and let stand for five minutes.

'Til next time.