Thank you so much for visiting my blog. This is a story about 1 girl and her journey to make herself and her family healthy spiritually, mentally and physically. Throughout my journey I have successes and "learning opportunities". I share them all here - the good, the bad and the ugly. As I grow and learn, I will share it here.

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Super-Easy Slow Cooker Three-Bean Chili


Super-Easy Slow Cooker Three-Bean Chili
 
I forgot to take a picture of this.  I will add it next time.  This recipe came from our Weight Watchers Weekly (and is where I got the picture until I take my own). 
 
My first thought when I saw this recipe was that I have everything in my pantry to make this except fresh cilantro and lime - and it did not need to be added till the end. I was heading to the store later that morning, so I put in on too cook.  Anything I can make with the staples in my pantry is always a good thing. 
 
This recipe did not require much change.  I did use my homemade taco seasoning mix.  It is great and I know what is in it. 
 
This recipe got a great review from 3 out of 4 of us.  Daniel said it was good, but did not have meat in it.   I can easily see adding meat to this sometimes.  It would change the points value, but if you use the right meat - it remains 0 for simply filling. 
 
This recipe serves 10.  I made two frozen dinners out of it and the rest was consumed yesterday.  We had warm full bellies on this freezing, windy, rainy Saturday.
 
This will now be in our winter rotation.  The lime and cilantro give it a fabulous flavor. 

 

Super Easy Slow Cooker Three-Bean Chili

Serving size for points - 1 1/3 cup

Points plan - 6 pp+/ serving
0 pp+ if doing Simply Filling

I also added a little grated cheese on top. Be sure to add points for cheese.
Daniel said it made great Frito Pie. Be sure to add points for Fritos.
 
Source: Weigh Watchers Weekly Nov. 17-23
Course: Gluten Free Soup/stew/Chili
Serves: 10

Ingredients

  • 1 large onion
  • 1 medium garlic clove, minced
  • 2 (15 ounce) cans black beans rinsed and drained
  • 2 (15 ounce) cans red kidney beans rinsed and drained
  • 2 (15 ounce) cans pinto beans rinsed and drained
  • View All Ingredient....
  • 3 (10 ounce) can diced tomatoes with chilies  (Rotel)
  • 1 (15 ounce) can tomato sauce
  • 1 14 ounce chili seasoning mix  - I used homemade taco seaoning mix
  • 14 oz frozen corn kernels
  • 1 Tbsp lime juice
  • 1/2 cup fresh cilantro minced

Directions

  1. Combine onion, garlic, beans, tomatoes, tomato sauce, and taco seasoning in a slow cooker.
  2. Cover and cook on high for 2-3 hours (or low heat 4-6 hours).
  3. Add frozen corn during last hour of cooking.
  4. Stir in lime juice and cilantro just before serving.

 

Friday, November 1, 2013

Challenge to Blessing


I am crying as I sit trying to decide how to put my thoughts and feelings into words.   This week has been so overwhelming.  It has been filled with joy, love, frustration, anxiousness, anger, sadness, exhaustion, humbleness, honor, praises, terror, lack of sleep,  satisfaction,  happiness all topped with PMS. 

It has been a very difficult start to my year.  There have been so many joyous moments and quite a few frustrating times.  At the beginning of the year I even commented that God must think I am a better teacher than I think I am.  Then things started to look like they were turning around. 

Sunday at church, we had a powerful lesson about GOD IS FOR US.  Those are 4 words that will rock your world and change your life – Rick Atchley.  It does not mean that things will be easy.  But there will be no circumstance that will shake my confidence.   This week put that to the test.  On Monday, I received a new challenge.  As I experienced this challenge this week – I kept saying to God – this is not funny.  Then we were hit with some challenges at home.    Needless to say – this week was frustrating.  Thursday was very rough with both sets of challenges – school and home. 

Friday started off rough at school.  Then I find out the history of my challenge – and anger – no more like rage hit.  How could anyone treat anyone this way.  Tears continue to roll down my cheeks as I think of it.  WHY?!?!?! 

Then I was humbled/ honored.  One week in our class and the family is already seeing a difference at home and this challenge loves me and wants to come to school – which is a big change for this precious blessing.   This precious one still has a very long way to go but now I see it for what it truly is - a gift from God -   a reminder of why I do what I do. 

I know there will be many challenges while going through this journey with these blessings I have been given (there are 4 ---- 5 if you count the one at home).   But with lots of prayer, love, smiles, kind words, hugs, and patience we will not survive - we will all thrive. 

GOD IS FOR US!!!!!!!!!!!

How Great Thou Art!  

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Easy Hashbrown Casserole


The original recipe called for cornflakes on the top (for crunch effect). I decided to omit that. My favorite part - no cream of anything in this recipe. 
 
This recipe was soooo easy and quick to put together.  Next time I will add my sausage to it.  This will be great as a side dish or a full meal!!!!! 
 
Source: Adapted from My Blessed Life
Course: Gluten Free Breakfast/Brunch
 
Ingredients
  • 32 oz. shredded frozen potatoes
  • 1 1/2 cups sour cream {I just use an entire 16 oz container of fat free sour cream.}
  • 1/2 cup milk (I used 1%)
  • 1 med onion chopped
  • 1/2 stick butter
  • 2 generous cups shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • pepper to taste optional
Directions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Saute onion in butter.
  3. Mix potatoes and shredded cheddar cheese together.
  4. In a small bowl, sour cream, onion, milk, salt and pepper.
  5. Add to potato mixture.
  6. Mix well.
  7. Pour into a greased 13×9 casserole dish.
  8. Bake 30 minutes.
  9. Sprinkle extra cheese on top and bake until cheese is melted (and slightly browned for my family).
 
 

Sunday, February 3, 2013

Pumpkin Spice Muffins


I think I am finally getting the hang of this.  I love using coconut flour.  It is high in fiber and protein and helps lower points plus values in recipes.  I love using almond flour - but the points are sooo high.  In baking, I am trying to use more coconut flour.  I can eat a muffin that is 2-3 points plus, but 5 pp+ for the same size muffin is too expensive in my world. 
 
The original recipe said that canned pumpkin would not work.  However, I adjusted a few things and omitted a few things to get the ratio to turn out right using canned pumpkin. This is a recipe that you need to "pulse" with your food processor or blender.  It does make a difference. 
 
I had these cooling on the counter when Daniel work up this morning.  He came into the computer room with a great big smile and a thumbs up.  I didn't even need to ask if they were good. 
 
Pumpkin Spice Muffins
 
Serves:  8
Serving size: 1 muffin
Weight Watchers: 2 ppt per muffin
Ingredients
  • 1/4 cup coconut flour
  • 1/8 teaspoon celtic sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 tablespoon ground ginger
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup freshly roasted pumpkin I used canned, original recipe said canned will not work
  • 1/3 cup honey original recipe called for 1/2 cup
Directions
  1. In a food processor pulse together coconut flour, salt, baking soda, cinnamon and ginger
  2. Pulse in eggs, pumpkin, honey
  3. Transfer batter into paper lined muffin tin
  4. Bake at 350° for 25- 30 minutes
  5. Serve
 
Source: Modified from Elena's Pantry

Saturday, February 2, 2013

Three-Cheese Mac' and Cheese


This recipe has the potential to be really great and if you like paprika in your mac and cheese - this is great!  The next batch I will make without paprika!  I also think it needed a little more salt and possibly garlic (I love garlic in almost everything).  The texture is creamy I just don't like the paprika.  I also decided to not bake it with the breadcrumbs (mostly because I did not have any gluten free breadcrumbs).
 
Good news - with a few tweeks, it will be a new favorite. 
 
 
Smokey Three-Cheese Mac' and Cheese
 
Serving Size: 2 cups
Weight Watchers: 10 pp+ per serving
 
Source: Veg Power! - Weight Watchers cookbook
Course: Gluten Free Main Couse
 
 
Ingredients
  • 1 pound brown rice pasta original recipe called for whole wheat
  • 3 cups fat-free milk
  • 3 tablespoons gluten free flour blend original called for whole wheat flour
  • 4 oz reduced fat cream cheese cut into cubes
  • 1 cup reduced fat cheddar cheese shredded
  • 1 cup smoked mozzarella shredded (I used regualar mozzarella)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 cup gluen free bread crumbs oringinal recipe called for panko bread crumbs
 
Directions:
  1. Cook pasta according to package direcions, omitting salt if desired.
  2. Preheat broiler. Spray 4 quart flameproof casserole dish with nonstick spray (olive oil spray) - I did not do because I was making just plain mac and cheese
  3. Meanwhile, whisk together milk and flour in large saucepan until smooth. Set over medium high heat and cook, whisking constantly, until mixture comes to a boil and thickens, about 4 minutes, about 4 minutes.
  4. Remove from heat, add cream cheese, cheddar, mozzarella, paprika and salt. Whisk unil smooth.
  5. Stir in pasta.
  6. Eat or bake - We ate it at this point - this is a Kim addition to the recipe
  7. Transfer mixture to prepared casserole dish. Sprinkle evenly with crumbs; spray crumbs lightly with nonstick cooking spray (olive oil spray).
  8. Broil until crumbs are lightly browned, 2-3 minutes.
  

Veggie Jambalaya


 
I recently bought Weight Watchers new Veg Power! cook book.    Scott has been asking for different ways to serve veggies in our diet - so I thought this would be a good book to purchase.  I tried to look it up on Amazon and on the Weight Watchers site and could not find it.  I purchased my copy a the Hurst Weight Watchers store site (where I go to meetings) off of Grapevine Hwy between Madel's and Tom Thumb.  I feel most Weight Watchers stores and meetings will have it. 
 
This is the first recipe I tried and it was great!  We like a bit of more "kick" so next time I will increase the cayenne pepper just a little.  Daniel even added a little stinky cheese (Parmesan cheese) to the top of his - I tried one bite and it was a nice addition.  The serving size is 2 cups - yes 2 cups.  I could only eat one! 
 
 
Veggie Jambalaya
Veggie Jambalaya
 
Serving size: 2 cups -
Weight Watchers - 10 pp+
Source: Veg Power! - Weight Watchers cookbook
Course: Gluten Free Main Course
Serves: 1

Ingredients

  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 4 celery stalks thinly sliced
  • 2 carrots thinly sliced
  • 2 onions chopped
  • 1 red bell pepper diced (I omitted this due to family not liking bell peppers)
  • 4 garlic cloves minced
  • 3/4 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 2 cups water
  • 3/4 cup long grain rice (I used brown rice)
  • 3/4 cup red lentils picked over and rinsed
  • 14 1/2 oz can stewed tomatoes
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 10 oz frozen corn kernels thawed
  • 1/4 cup parsley chopped

Directions

  1. Heat oil in large saucepan over medium-high heat.
  2. Add celery, carrots, onions, and bell pepper.
  3. Cook, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are softened, 8 minutes.
  4. Add garlic, thyme, and cayenne, stirring constantly, 1 minute.
  5. Stir in water, rice, lentils, tomatoes, and salt; bring to boil.
  6. Reduce heat and cover.
  7. Simmer, stirring occasionally, until rice and lentils are tender, about 20 minute.
  8. Add corn and cook 5 minutes longer.
  9. Stir in parsley.
 

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Gluten Free Applesauce Muffins


Ok - tried this one again.  I used Namaste Gluten Free Perfect Flour Blend (I buy mine through amazon) and increased the eggs from 2 to 3.  It did not change the point plus values.  They worked great!!!!!!!  I have only tried this with the muffins - not the bread (may have to increase the cook time for bread). 
 
 
 
Makes 12 muffins
Serving Size: 1 muffin
Weight Watchers: 3 pp+ per muffin
 
Source: adapted from Heavenly Homemakers
 

Serves: 1

Ingredients

  •  1 1/2 cup Namaste Gluten Free Perfect Flour blend
  • 1/2 t. baking powder
  • 1/2 t. baking soda
  • 1/4 t. sea salt
  • 1 t. cinnamon
  • 1/2 t. nutmeg
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1 cup applesauce
  • 3  eggs

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Mix dry ingredients.
  3. Make a well in the center and add honey, applesauce, and eggs.
  4. Stir well.
  5. Pour into a bread pan (sprayed with Pam) or stone or into 12 muffin tins (sprayed with Pam)
  6. Bake for 45-55 minutes for a loaf, 20 minutes for Muffins until a toothpick inserted in the middle of the loaf/ muffin comes out clean.
Source: adapted from Heavenly Homemakers

Saturday, January 5, 2013

Granny's Gluten Free Breadmaker Bread


I got my first bag of Namaste Perfect Flour Blend at Health Hut on Harwood Road in Bedford, TX. However, I found that it much cheaper online - still costly - but much cheaper.   

When I first started the bread - I kept thinking it is too wet, it is not going to be good. But I just let it go through the entire process. Glad I did - this bread is great!
 
Granny's Gluten Free Breadmaker Bread
 
Source: Namaste Foods
Serves: 1

Ingredients

  • 3 1/2 cups Namaste Perfect Flour Blend
  • 1 1/2 cups milk
  • 1 tablespoon cider vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons oil
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1/2 cup Arrowroot starch (or cornstarch or tapioca starch)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 tablespoon yeast

Directions

  1. Combine wet ingredients and place in breadmaker.
  2. Combine dry ingredients (except yeast) and add to breadmaker.
  3. Make well in top of flour mixture and add yeast.
  4. Close breadmaker.
  5. Bake on medium crust, 1 to 1 ½ lb or gluten free bread setting. (Settings vary by breadmaker). With mine - I did 1 ½ lb setting.
  6. Cool completely before slicing.
 

Paleo Pancake


First note:  I do not do Paleo.  However, I am not far from it.  The big thing for me is that they have many great recipies. Many who do gluten free, use many different kinds of flours and starches and use a lot of sugar.  I am trying to stick to mostly almond and coconut flour with a limited amount of starches and only honey or maple syrup as sweeteners (considering another- but the jury is still out on that one). 
 
The website I found this recipe on called it the best Paleo Pancake ever.  When I first mad
e it I say - "Yeah Right!"  This is good, but not the best.  As I tell my scholars "If you can't make a mistake - you can't make anything."  So I kept trying.  Funny thing this time - the recipe did not change at all - only how I did things changed.
 
Third times a charm!

First batch came out good, but a little grainy, very difficult to turn and fell apart - more like pancake crumbles. 

Second batch, I "sort of" sifted (with a spoon slowly adding to measuring cup) and they turned out better. They were not as grainy but still fell apart - but not as bad as the first batch.  

This morning, I used my sifter.  This batch turned out much better.  They were not grainy, and held together like pancakes.  I will be freezing the extra for ready made breakfasts next week.  I will update to let you know how they do with freezing.
 
Now I can say this is the best gluten free (Paleo also) recipe  I have tried yet! 

But I had a lot of learning to do. 
 
Lessons learned:
  • sift coconut flour - it makes a difference in texture
  • when it says beat eggs until frothy- beat eggs until frothy
  • turn down heat a little and cook a little longer
  • if it looks like it will not turn over - cook a little longer
  • the batter is very thick - but will melt with heat (from coconut milk) - see picture
This is what pancake batter looks like when "plopped" on griddle
 
 The Best Paleo Pancake Ever
 
Weight Watchers pp+ values (gotta love ww math)

1 pancake = 2 pp+
2 pancakes = 3 pp+
3 pancakes = 5 pp+
4 pancakes = 7 pp+
 

Ingredients

  • 6 eggs
  • 1 can coconut milk (I used light)
  • 2 Teaspoons vanilla
  • 1/2 Tablespoon baking soda
  • 1 Tablespoon honey
  • 2 Teaspoons cinnamon
  • 3/4 Cup coconut flour

Directions

  1. Beat the eggs until they're frothy.
  2. Mix the remaining ingredients together.
  3. I thought it was a little dry, so I added water.  Next time will probably use butter or coconut oil. 
  4. Cook on a griddle.   When you pour the batter, try to keep the cakes small. If they're difficult to flip, cook them a bit longer.
From:  Hivelogic