Friday, August 26, 2011

The Heat Is On…

Our thermometer topped out at 107 today, so the pool was a must….
And a “rainbow” smoothie was surely to be on the menu…

Strawberry, Pineapple, and Mango Smoothie
1 cup unsweetened coconut milk
1 scoop vanilla protein powder
1Tbsp flax meal
2 handfuls baby spinach
1/2 cup frozen pineapple
1/2 cup frozen mango
1/2 cup frozen strawberries

Blend all ingredients together in your blender until creamy and smooth!  You can add more coconut milk or water if needed.

The hubs took the day off today…much needed after finishing his 7-week intensive Greek class for his masters!  We are so very proud of his accomplishments thus far, but I honestly can’t wait until it’s all over.  He deserved a special treat, so I made this for a sweet, but nourishing, snack today.
Banana-Carrot Bread (Gluten, dairy, and nut free)
1 1/2 cups gluten-free flour blend (*see below for my favorite blend)
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp xanthum gum
1 tsp cinnamon
pinch of nutmeg
2 “flax” eggs (2 Tbsp flax meal + 6 Tbsp water, let soak for about 5 minutes)
1/2 cup coconut oil
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup maple syrup
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup mashed bananas (about 2 large bananas)
1 cup grated carrots
1/2 cup dark chocolate chips (optional)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Prepare standard loaf pan with cooking spray.  Combine “flax” eggs, brown sugar, coconut oil, maple syrup, and vanilla in a large mixing bowl.  Whisk together well.  In a medium bowl combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, xanthum gum, cinnamon, and nutmeg.  Blend well.  Combine dry ingredients with wet ingredients and mix together well.  Fold in mashed bananas, carrots, and chocolate chips.  Bake for 50-55 minutes or until center comes clean when checked with a toothpick.
 *Gluten-Free Flour Blend
6 cups brown rice flour
2 cups potato starch
1 cup tapioca flour
Yields 9 cups

Dinner was planned and I had everything put together, but what I wasn’t planning on was this wretched heat!  I couldn’t fathom the thought of turning on the oven, so I opted for the toaster oven and cooked dinner in smaller portions.  It was worth the wait…

Cheesy Chicken and Rice Bake (and for myself, Cheesy Chicken and Rice Bake)
2 whole boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cooked and cubed (omit if you want to make it a vegetarian meal)
4 cups cooked brown rice (I used a combination of brown rice, red rice, and black barley)
3/4 cups frozen corn (Trader Joe’s fire roasted corn is fabulous in this dish)
1 15oz. can organic black beans, drained and rinsed
1 cup plain Greek yogurt
4 oz. can chopped green chilis (I used mild)
1/4 cup red pepper, chopped
1/4 cup salsa (I used homemade fire-roasted salsa…recipe to come!)
1 cup cheddar cheese
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  In a large bowl combine all ingredients and mix thoroughly to combine.  Season with salt and pepper if desired.  Transfer to an oven-safe dish and top with extra cheese if you would like.  Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until heated through.

The outside heat wasn’t the only thing I was feeling today.  I’m starting to feel the heat of the school year quickly approaching!  This morning, when I walked into the living room and saw this…
 DSCN0212 all my anxieties and fears were wiped away and the Lord replaced them with a sense of comfort and peace.  Homeschooling is a blessing, not a burden, and I couldn’t be more excited to see what God has in store for us on this new journey.   Here’s a sampling of some of the curriculum we’ll be diving into.


  1. i love that you posted a recipe with coconut milk in it because i just bought some the other day, wanting to try it out as an alternative to dairy. can't wait to try out the dinner recipe as well, once i can begin to eat dairy again. loving your blog :)

  2. thanks heidi! i'll try and post more recipes with coconut milk as i find it a bit more appealing than almond milk. have you every tried "vegan cheese"...i think the brand is Daiya (could be spelled wrong)?