“Kiss My Kale” Class!
This section is where I will be posting either recipes I have put my own spin on (and will give credit where credit is due) or have concocted of my own! The title of this page may seem a little off putting, but for the sake of professionalism, rather than telling you to “kiss my pale ass” if you do not like a recipe I have posted, saying “kiss my kale class” seems just a little bit more polite .
“Pretty Dope Kale Chips“
(for a lack of better words…this title will have to suffice. I’ll take any suggestions!)
- 2 Stalks of kale (BIG ONES, BRO)
- 1 Tablespoon of grapeseed oil (may substitute olive oil or who knows, coconut oil when melted might be good…but I really think the grapeseed oil was a key ingredient here that I would not suggest substituting!)
- 1/2 – 1 Tsp. of apple cider vinegar (I actually just used the lid of the apple cider vinegar bottle as a measurer and just splashed over the kale however much the lid could hold–no real estimate really, but I would be sure to not go more than 1 tsp.!)
- Squeeze (1-3 times) of lemon.
- 3-5 dashes (or to taste, I think I used 5 dashes) of pink salt (may use sea salt/regular salt).
- Himalayan salt, also known as rock salt, to your liking (it’s optional — I just like to incorporate it whenever I can since this one is actually really good for you!)
- Black pepper to taste
- Ground ginger to taste (1-3 dashes)
- Sirracha (optional – may spritz all over at end!)
- Pre-heat often to 375.
- Get a bowl and drop in the 1 tbsp. of grapeseed oil.
- Take one stalk of kale and rip apart leaves from stem. The shapes do NOT have to be uniform; but they shouldn’t range from itsy bitsy teeny weeny yellow polka dot bikini to larger than life. For an idea of how big (roughly) each of my leaves were, make a circle with your thumb and that pointer finger of yours — my kale leaves in size were a little smaller than that or slightly larger
You will have some very dinky ones in size near the beginning and ends of the stem due to the veggie’s nature. Drop these leaves in the bowl with the grapeseed oil as you go.
- Repeat this process with the remaining stalk of kale.
- Pour the apple cider vinegar and lemon juice over the kale. You’ll be mixing it with your HANDS (yes, hands — it’s the best way to get everything covered!), so don’t worry about trying to pour it evenly over the kale.
- Add in the rest of your spices — pink salt, himalayan salt, black pepper, and ground ginger.
- Make sure your hands are clean (but without remnants of soap! Yuck.) and massage the kale. That sounds awkward, I know, but seriously just massage the fuck oil and spices into the kale already. Do so until the kale leaves have been covered with everything! Should only take a couple minutes at most .
- Lay each kale leaf flat on a pan (I used a pan that was but only square) being sure to not lay them on top of each other. You could also use a cookie sheet, but I think using something like a pizza pan or even a wire cooling rack would work much, much better. Makes them more crispy and less limp (unlike one of my last boyfriends. Woops!).
- Put in the oven for 7 minutes. Keep an eye on them and be sure to check them at 4 or 5 to see how they are doing. I like mine more on the crispy side so 7 was perfect for me!
- Makes one very selfish (but not all that naughty!) serving .
Oh, and if you dare…I added sirracha to mine at the end, glazed it on top of the kale chips. It was a very “hot” experience…totally worth it, though!
“Mouth Party Salad UnDressing”
- ¼ Cup sirracha – DO NOT USE THIS MUCH IF YOU ARE SENSITIVE TO HEAT/SPICE. Even if you like it hot (heh), this was a little too much even for me to handle…that being said, I’d recommend trying 1/8 cup instead.
- ¼ Cup lemon juice
- 2 Tbsp. Pear-infused vinegar (i just wanted to use this because I’ve had it in my kitchen for a while and thought it’d be a good contrast of flavors with the spice of the sirracha. This worked out very well but I’m sure you could use any other type of vinegar too. I think that apple cider vinegar would’ve also done the job.)
- 1 Tsp. of pink salt
- 1 Tsp black pepper
- 1/8 Cup of herbs de provence (I’m sure substituting basil or some other spice would suffice ).
- 2 Heaping tbsp. olive oil
- 2 Tbsp Vegenaise (I have just plain but I recommend purchasing the grapeseed oil one if you don’t already have any on hand—it’s supposedly more nutritious !)
El Processo…sorry, my Spanish speaking skills are non-existent.
- Pour all of the ingredients in a bowl and combine with a whisk, stirring quickly. I was worried about the Vegenaise curdling or separating, but I don’t think it really matters because the oil separates from it anyway so you always have to shake it up before glazing it on the salad.
- Find a container to put your salad dressing in and that about covers it! I got my salad dressing bottle from the dollar store—if you have some Tupperware around though that will work just fine. Grab a spoon to ladle it on! Or just pour out of the bottle.
Funnels are EXTREMELY helpful for pouring in salad dressing into pretty little bottles along with any other liquid–works great for juice made from juicing and home made almond milk!
Now, we couldn’t have a rad salad dressing without something jazzy to follow it up with! That being said, here’s a salad that paired quite well with the dressing.
“Bermuda, Bahamas, Come on Pretty Mama’s Salad” (I title this shit this way just because I can, okay?!)
- 2 Stems of Kale (leaves de-stemmed & put into food processor or cut up very fine)
- 2 Swiss chard leaves (leaves de-stemmed & put into food processor or cut up very fine)
- Bed of spinach (1-2 cups depending on dish size)
- 1 Sundried tomato slice (sliced fine)
- 1 Carrot (chopped –chunky-ish!)
- 5-8 Red grapes (each grape cut in half)
- Salads are pretty basic so I feel like instructions aren’t entirely necessary but basically lay flat a bed of spinach and throw everything on top. Mix together as you please! And there you have it! Enjoy your nutritious salad (which could be full of protein if you wanted to add nuts to it–for this recipe, I think any nut would suffice! Pistachios might be especially nice ).
“Another Way To Reuse Juiced Pulp: ‘Potato Salad’!”
- Leftover pulp from juicing (this recipe is geared towards juice that is made mostly with vegetables; if you juice mostly with fruit, still keep the Vegenaise but feel free to adjust the flavors to make it more sweet. Perhaps instead of olive oil try grapeseed oil [or cut it out altogether] and add raw honey).
- A few tablespoons of Vegenaise (grapeseed oil kind is best!) — I used three tablespoons for my batch.
- Some oil (I used olive oil) — depends on how much pulp you have left. I used about 1-2 tablespoons.
- Lemon juice (to your liking)
- Apple cider vinegar (I only used a splash, but I would say you could go up to 1 tablespoon)
- Spices to taste (I used himalayan salt, black pepper, ginger, and pink salt).
- Sirracha!! (I went TO TOWN with this because I love it.)
- Take all of those ingredients with your leftover juiced pulp and throw it in a bowl and mix it up using a mixer or to make it more fine, a food processor. That’s pretty much it!
- For the sake of portion control though, I did package them into individual servings. Three tablespoons of Vegenaise = 300 calories roughly and that’s not counting the oil! I try not to count calories too much, but three tablespoons of too much fat could potentially do more harm than good, especially when processed.
“Cauliflower Greenin’ (Like California Dreamin’, get it? ) with Beef Bacon“
- One head (hah) of organic cauliflower
- 3-4 Stalks/branches of raw kale (with the leaves removed from the stems)
- About 5-7 sprigs of raw Italian parsley (with the leaves removed from the stems, with the exception of one whole one for a garniture)
- 1-2 Cups of raw spinach
- 1/2 Of an avocado
- 2 Tablespoons of pasture butter **TO MAKE THIS DISH VEGAN, SUBSTITUTE VEGAN BUTTER OR ADD MORE AVOCADO — different oils may also work!** (In regards to brands for the butter, I used Organic Valley’s; was so much better than any other regular cheap butter!)
- 1 Large garlic clove (pressed or minced; using a garlic press definitely brings out more of the garlic flavor in the “taters” and adds a nice touch to the beef bacon or any other red meat that you may want to use).
- Black pepper (to taste)
- Pink salt (to taste)
Da Process, Biotch!
- Begin with saying Grace. Just kidding.
- It is probably more ideal to bring water to a boil first rather than just throwing the cauliflower and parsley in there with water, just waiting for what feels like an eternity…so if you have filtered water, I recommend filling a saucepan up with it (’cause that tap water is some nasty shit! but this is just a personal preference of mine). Fill the saucepan about 2/3 full.
- While you wait to bring that to a boil, wash the cauliflower and take apart the little tree pieces. The smaller the pieces = the quicker all of them will boil down!
- Once the water is boiling, pop in the cauliflower and also rip apart some leaves from 1-2 stems of italian parsley (optional, but I feel like it helps add just a little extra flavor).Poor wittle sauce pan, you just couldn’t really handle all of the pressure, could ya’?
- BE SURE TO COOK THE CAULIFLOWER ON MEDIUM HEAT. The cauliflower should be done cooking anywhere between 10-20 minutes. I wasn’t really paying attention to time so you have to suffer by constantly poking your cauliflower to see whether or not you can easily break it apart with your spoon/stirring utensil. I was using a wooden spoon and a little oomph was required to break it but my trees weren’t cut down to size as you can tell in the photo. Learn from my fuck ups, Obi Wan.
- While cooking your cauli’, throw in the food processor (or in a bowl if using a mixer, which I tried and failed miserably at hence the photo below, but the food processor will help make a nicer consistency) 1/2 of an avocado, the 1 large garlic clove pressed or simply whole (the processor should do the trick instead of mincing–but BE SURE TO SAVE SOME FOR THE BEEF BACON! Or not, if you so desire.), the remaining LEAVES of the italian parsley, kale leaves, and spinach. Process these bad boys until well-combined. (By the way, I obviously used WAY more greens than photographed below–I just added a few ingredients in at a time so that you could see a little bit of everything for the most part .)
- You should have recently thrown in or throw in a separate pan a couple slices of beef bacon. You really could do any type of red meat or no meat if you want to, but I cooked mine with grapeseed oil, garlic, and black pepper–turned out real delicious!
- Once the cauliflower has been boiled to make it somewhat easy to break apart, drain the cauliflower/italian parsley blend and rinse with cold water.
- Again, I like to use the food processor because it is really quick and easy to use, but you could use a mixer here instead. I must warn you, though, using the mixer was a messy process which is why I resorted to the food processor. See below.
- After scratching the mixer idea, I threw everything I had concocted plus what was already in the food processor back in the food processor. With the cauliflower still being warm even though I rinsed it off (rinsed it off so it was still warm but not blasting hot), I thought the butter would blend butter–which is why I waited until then to add in the butter until now. So, yeah–throw this shit in the food processor along with those 2 tablespoons of pasture butter! () Process these goodies until smooth enough to resemble mashed potatoes or to your liking. Feel free to add in some pink salt and black pepper while processing or afterward to help enhance taste
Save one sprig of Italian parsley for a garnish. I didn’t check the calories/nutrition for the beef bacon, but for all of those mashed “potatoes” — the entire pot is less than 500 calories! I will have at least 2 servings left for sure, so this is definitely one guilt free side-dish. I rough-estimated my calorie findings on the following links listed (thanks ! Myfitnesspal.com is also a great calorie resource to refer to).
Slight nutrition content for:
- Raw (keep in mind that the recipe only calls for half of an avocado)
- (specifically from Organic Valley site–remember that this recipe calls for 2 tablespoons)
And your final result is…tastiness!
“Moody Not-Milk Shake“
NOM NOM. Grace? Hungry. Satisfied? Very!
I didn’t measure these ingredients out initially because I was not intending on posting this, so these are rough estimates, but feel free to play around to your liking .
- 3/4 Cup chocolate almond milk (I highly recommend the “Blue Diamond” over “Silk”; I haven’t tried others, but Blue Diamond’s business model is much more ethical [I say this because of Silk's support of GMO's--please take a look at written by Natural News to get informed!])
- 1/4 Cup unsweetened hemp milk
- Scoop of raw liquid cacao (big spoonful–maybe a little over 1 tablespoon.) If you do not have raw liquid cacao around, try using cacao powder (or cocoa powder if you don’t have cacao available to you), however the texture may be different. Or maybe even just rid of the hemp milk and add more of the chocolate almond milk to maintain that consistency .
- 1/2 Teaspoon raw honey
- Small handful of walnuts (about between 4-7, but I’d suggest no more than 7 unless you are feeling experimental).
- 1 To 1 and 1/2 tablespoons of coconut sugar (could omit entirely or substitute with more raw honey–I just really wanted something on the sweeter side).
- 1 To 1 and 1/2 tablespoons of smooth/creamy natural peanut butter (I suggest Parker’s or if available to you, the brand I love that I use is called “The Good Life”. Just peanut butter that is organic and made with only peanuts and salt. I bet almond butter would be a good substitute as well. I am sure crunchy PB will work as well but you may want to throw it in the food processor in case your blender isn’t that much of a champ at blending [mine is a little bitch to work with]).
- Cinnamon to taste (optional — cinnamon is known to help suppress appetite, though, so I throw it in my snacks and teas/drinks as often as I can ).
- 1-2 Tablespoons of brewed coffee (I use a device called a to brew my coffee. The filters are overpriced so this one from Amazon for a few bucks more with the two extra filters is a pretty good deal. Otherwise you may be able to find it at your local health food/wellness store). This bitchin’ contraption helps reduce acidity of the coffee, making it so nice and smooth…mmm! Also, when combined with chocolate, coffee helps bring out more of chocolate’s natural flavors!
- 5-7 Ice cubes
- OPTIONAL – Chia seeds, when mixed with wet ingredients, can become more “gelatinous” — meaning have a kind of jelly, slimy (not the best word but whatever), thicker texture which may be good for smoothies. Try throwing those in in addition to the walnuts (or play around and omit the walnuts by substituting chia seeds–try using 1 to 2 tablespoons).
Methods To Avoid Menstrual Madness:
- Take the cacao, walnuts (and/or chia seeds), honey, and peanut butter and place them in your food processor. If you do not have a food processor, then place these ingredients in your blender FIRST before anything else until well combined. (Well, I guess you could throw the cinnamon in here too if you like ).
- Take this mixture out of the food processor and scrape it into the blender (or leave it in the blender if you didn’t use the FP).
- Drop in 5-7 ice cubes.
- Pour over the ice cubes the unsweetened hemp milk and chocolate almond milk (or just the chocolate almond milk if you want something a little more chocolate-y). Also add the coconut sugar (again, feel free to omit if you like or substitute with more raw honey).
- Add in the cinnamon if you have not done so already.
- Blend that shit together until you have achieved your desired, ideal, perfecto, OPA! type of consistency. (OPA! is a Greek term that Greek people yell randomly…just YouTube it, or something. Actually, don’t. I just tried to do some research to do the work for you and none of the videos I looked at do it any justice. That being said, I’ll just make a video of myself yelling out “OPA!”. In the meantime, you’ll just have to wonder.)
PS–Everything still does taste much, much better in a wine glass.
“Mediterranean Style Cupcakes“
Serving size: I made 24 mini cupcakes and I believe 16 medium-sized ones. You could probably cut this recipe in half and do fine, I imagine.
- 1/2 Cup of BLANCHED almond meal/flour. I bought Bob’s Red Mill from Festival Foods in town for about $11, which is kind of ouch since it was only like 2 pounds…but I don’t bake as much as I used to, so I was content with the purchase. I wanted to buy it to try to make a healthier “fried” chicken the other night and it worked out not too shabbily!
- 1/2 Cup gluten-free flour–I also have this by Bob’s Red Mill brand…I just mixed this with the almond flour because I wanted to use up some of my big 5 lb. bag since I have a feeling it’s going to last me kind of an eternity -_- …
- 1/2 Cup egg replacer – bought this a while back at the co-op in town by the brand “Ener-G”. Egg replacer essentially is just potato starch. I feel kind of silly using this since I could have probably just used eggs but that would vary the results of the recipe if you were to switch it. I just used it because I have had it in my cabinet for a while and also read that potato starch was a good binder when baking with almond meal!
- 1 Teaspoon baking soda (I was a little worried that my cupcakes wouldn’t rise. They have flopped on me before.)
- 1 Teaspoon baking powder (okay, I was more than a little worried that my cupcakes wouldn’t rise ).
- 1 Teaspoon of pink salt or sea salt (I used pink salt since I had it on hand, but I am sure sea salt would be a fine substitute!)
- 2/3 Cup coconut sugar (I dislike using added sugars, but this one seems more “au naturale” than other sweeteners I have come across. I’d like to use stevia but it doesn’t sit well with my tummy.)
WET INGREDIENTS & ITS NOT-SO WET PARTNERS (HAH!):
- 3/4 Cup olive oil (go with cold-pressed & organic).
- 1/4 Cup honey (the type I used was raw & unfiltered, which is not as sweet as typical market store honey).
- 3 And 1/2 tablespoons lemon juice (this might have been a little too much in my opinion, so try going with 3 tablespoons or even 2 and 1/2 instead. I like tart flavors so it’s fine for me, but might not necessarily be for those who are opposed to tartness.)
- 1 Tablespoon ghee or pasture butter (whatever other butter you have around is fine as well if you’re not too picky. Ghee is just clarified butter which you could make on your own if you already have regular butter around–
- 1/4 Cup unsweetened hemp milk (I’m sure other non-dairy or dairy products would work fine, but I highly advise against adding any more than 1/4 cup of it).
- 2 Medium-sized bananas (for additional and more natural sweetness).
- 1/8 Cup dried rosemary (you may want to try to make these more crushed/fine so that you’re not biting into too big of pieces of rosemary ).
Bring It On, Klingon (I’m Talking About The Directions Over Here)!
- Pre-heat the oven to three-hundred-fiddy degrees! (350 degrees celsius).
- Grab a bowl and stir in with a whisk, fork, or spoon all of your dry ingredients. Once well-stirred, set this bowl aside.
- Gather all of the wet ingredients (and their not-so-wet partner ingredients). For this step I decided to use my food processor because I think it works better than a mixer does, but if you do not have a food processor around, then a mixer should suffice –but you will probably have to mix for longer to ensure everything is well-combined. Otherwise if you do have a food processor, throw all of those bad boys in the food processor and blend until everything is totally mixed together.The wet ingredients just waiting to get it on with their not-so-wet ingredient partners in crime…
- While you are waiting for the wet ingredients to fully mix/process with one another, grab your cupcake pan and place it with cupcake liners (highly recommended!) or else grease/spray it as you normally would.
- Combine the dry ingredients and the wet ingredients. Stir together thoroughly but not for too long (just until well-combined. I used a whisk and it worked out well).**NOTE** The batter may come off a little thick or have some type of texture that seems odd or not very typical of normal batter. Do not be alarmed, it is supposed to be like that for this recipe. You will be fine .
- Pour the batter about 2/3 full into your cupcake liners. If using mini cupcake liners/pan, cook the cupcakes for 19-21 minutes. If using medium-to-larger-sized cupcake liners/pan, then cook for 22-27 minutes. If going past 22 minutes, do check every 1-2 minutes the center of the cupcake with a toothpick to ensure it’s cooking but also to take a look to make sure that the edges of the cupcakes aren’t burning .
I used mini cupcake liners and then medium-sized cupcake liners. The minis did not have to cook as long as the medium-sized ones did. Sorry for the few with the ugly toothpick hole pokes .
SO, after making these cupcakes and taking a bite, they were nice and soft on the inside–I was ECSTATIC! I finally made a cupcake recipe that didn’t go 110% to shit. But now I was terribly confused: WHAT THE HELL DO I PUT ON THIS THING FOR FROSTING? With how intense of a flavor the cupcake was, I wanted to keep the frosting something light and simple. Well, I ended up making the process much, much more difficult than necessary. Hell, I even made two separate batches of frosting! I kept getting so upset because my frosting just would not turn out. I tried to make a vanilla frosting but it sucked so then I tried make a chocolate batch. The chocolate one sucked as well, so I thought I’d add both of them to see if that attempt would prevail. The more I fucked up along the way, the more ingredients I would add in effort to salvage it. Here are all of the ingredients combined that went to hell for making that faulty frosting:
- 3 Bananas
- 2 Tablespoons raw liquid cacao
- 1 Teaspoon olive oil
- 1/4 Cup + 1 tablespoon ghee
- 3 Tablespoons raw unfiltered honey
- 3 Tablespoons pure vanilla extract
- 1/4 Cup + 1 tablespoon almond meal
- 1/4 Teaspoon pink salt
- 1/3 Cup + 1/4 cup (too lazy to do the math at the moment) coconut sugar
- 2 Tablespoons coconut oil (I was starting to get desperate…)
Once I added all of that shit together, I got this–which doesn’t look too bad, but my tastebuds assured me otherwise.
I was beyond pissed off at this point. What the fuck was I going to use as a topping without resorting to confectioner’s sugar? Then I tried to calm myself down and remembered what I told myself in the beginning: “keep it simple, silly!” (I say “silly” instead of “stupid” because it’s not nice to call yourself stupid–something I’m trying to fix because it’s a bad habit I have!). That being said, I tried to think of things that went good with rosemary, lemon, and olive oil–instead of frosting…what’s more simple than making something new? Using something already made! With the texture of the cupcake reminding me of cornbread, I thought of different things that typically go well with cornbread: honey, butter, and honey butter. I slathered a little butter on one side of the cupcake and it wasn’t too shabby. Dipped the other side of the cupcake in a little bit of honey, that was pretty yummy. But then for some reason, cheese came to mind–oh yeah, that’s because I LOVE CHEESE. It’s a serious problem…but rather than processed cheese, I’ve started buying raw cheese instead. Then I told myself, “well, what the fuck–let’s throw some cheese on this!”
Treat the cheese like a filling and either directly insert it (man-handle it or something) into the cupcake or even slice it nicely and place it on top of the cupcake. I wasn’t feeling that fancy.
And who would have thought that a savory and still sweet cupcake topped off with goat cheese would be born? I sure as fuck didn’t. Enjoy, bitches!
Serving Size: I was able to make two glasses, but I had the whole thing to myself since calories were minimal and carbohydrates weren’t too terribly bad.
- 2 Handfulls of spinach (for health and to naturally attain the green color!)
- 1/8 Cup of cocoa nibs (“chocolate chips” )
- 1 Tsp. vanilla extract
- 1 Tsp. mint extract (**THIS IS VERY STRONG –so be careful to not add too much!**)
- 1 Cup of unsweetened hemp milk
- 1/4 Cup of liquid chai tea latte mix (I thought it would be a good way to sweeten it up–should’ve used 1/2 cup and omitted the coconut sugar, would have tasted sweeter)
- 1 Banana (I suggest using 2 or else freezing 1 banana in an attempt to make it a little more frothy/shake-like
- 2 tsp. coconut sugar (I should have used 2 tablespoons or just omitted this and used more chai tea latte mix)
- 5-7 ice cubes (may omit if you freeze the banana(s) first)
Steps To SUCCESS!:
- Combine the spinach, banana, cocoa nibs, vanilla extract, and mint extract in the food processor (or blender–I did this first so that both extracts blended thoroughly through the “core” of the shake’s ingredients). Also helped to get the cocoa nibs to look even more chocolate-chip-y like. My blender sucks though, which is why I usually use my food processor in addition to my blender. If you have something badass like a NutriBullet or a Vitamix…let me live vicariously through you, please.
- Take your green medley and place it into the blender. Add in the unsweetened hemp milk, liquid chai tea latte mix, coconut sugar, and ice cubes. Blend until desired consistency has been achieved.
Everything tastes so much better when it’s in a wine glass, I promise! Also note the unintentional matching of the green straw and green wine glass…
“Mouth Party Salad UnDressing”
SERVING SIZE: 2 tablespoons
Very Difficult To Follow Instructions:
- Pour all of the ingredients in a bowl and combine with a whisk. I was worried about the Veganaese curdling or separating so I added that in last, but U don’t think it really matters because the oil separates from it anyway so you always have to shake it up before glazing it on the salad.
I got my salad dressing bottle from the dollar store and the funnel from Target (I think)—if you have some Tupperware around though that will work just fine. Grab aspoon to ladle it on!
Now that we’re done with the deliciouso dressing, let’s check out contestant number two, the salad…!
“Bermuda, Bahamas, Come on Pretty Mama’s Salad” (The title is what it is just because I can.)
- 2 kale leaves (removed from stem)
- 2 swiss chard leaves (removed from stem)
- bed of spinach (about 1-2 cups roughly)
- 1 sundried tomato slice cut or chopped up
- 1 medium-sized carrot sliced rings
- 5-8 red grapes with each grape cut in half
I was going to use strawberries instead of grapes, but if you look at the image below you can see that the berries brought along some uninvited fuzzy company. R.I.P strawberries, may you R.I.P. …
Another Set Of Very Tough To Follow Directions:
- De-stem the kale leaves and de-stem the swiss chard. Place both the kale and swiss chard into a food processor (you could cut them up if you don’t have a food processor but it’s very quick at cutting up the greens and makes them into nice little bite-size pieces )
- Grab spinach and place it into the plate. I just made a bed of it so that it’d cover the plate, but as a rough estimate I probably used about 1-2 cups of spinach.
- Put the kale and swiss chard on top of the spinach. Stir it up a little bit.
- Cut up the sundried tomato slice into smaller chunks and sprinkle on the salad.
- Cut up as many or as little ring slices of a carrot and spread that around your beautimous salad dish.
- Take 5-8 red grapes and cut each grape in half. Place on top of salad.
- Drizzle the salad dressing and enjoy the fruits of your labor.
“How To Fix A FuCupCake“
Serving size: This shit is not applicable, this is just an idea I had of how to revive a baking endeavor that went all kinds of wrong but blossomed in the end!
Ladies and gents, I am probably one of the most ANAL individuals when it comes to using up leftovers and not being wasteful…but it’s moments like this when I need to remind myself of the saying “it’s better to have food go to waste, than to waist.” Clever little line that I like very much.
Anyway…sometimes throwing such a concoction out is not an option; like in instances when you offer to make margarita cupcakes for a Mexican potluck for the last night of class. The equation that led to this inventive method to salvage annihilated cupcakes goes along the lines of this:
Lack of finances + Lazy Grace – Time available = Quick thinking, which in turn led to innovative ideas (now I didn’t say smart or awesome ideas; just innovative ones :p).
Anyway…onto the sweet stuff. I have this tendency to not follow recipes; most of this, if not all, is due to my punkass nature. I tried a vegan diet (attempted is actually far more accurate) once upon a time and that is actually where my love for baking came from; who knew that you could make shit taste good with something other than refined sugar, confectioner’s sugar, and canola oil? . I sure didn’t. One recipe book I really enjoyed working from was “Vegan Cupcakes Take Over The World”. I highly recommend it . In the book there is a margarita cupcake recipe; a new way for me to indulge in tequila and not have to fear about my clothes coming off (another life equation I learned the hard way: Grace + tequila squared = negative article of clothing multiplied by amount of tequila consumption).
The type of flour that I had in my cabinet was gluten-free baking flour, which I only worked with one time prior and with a recipe that I actually followed almost all of the directions for. Well, apparently, there are rules to using gluten-free flour that I was unaware of–whoops .
Moral of the story…when I made some substitutions, such as using applesauce instead of canola oil, gluten-free flour instead of all-purpose, etc…the substitutions left the batter almost entirely in a liquid state. Instead of doing the rational thing like measuring out more flour and making accurate ratios of flour to baking soda, baking powder, or whatever, I pretty much said “fuck it” and free-styled it. I basically free-poured more gluten-free flour and organic sugar (which doesn’t make it healthier, but I figured if I was going to use sugar for this recipe that I’d at least get something slightly better than the plain stuff) until I received not the desired consistency, but what I deemed to be “all good in the hood”. So, you can imagine the miserable expression on my face when post baking the cupcakes’ texture resembled that of a baked potato. I shit you not. Literally, if I had some sour cream, I probably could have served it like a baked potato to my classmates and they would not have known. Sure, they might’ve been a little skeptical, thinking “wtf a mini baked potato?” but they would not have known for sure. The top part of the cupcakes were cooked all the way through, though! That baked top was just enough glimmer of hope to give me the most obnoxious idea ever: margarita boat bites.
I called them “bites” because they were supposed to be mini cupcakes…since the top part was the only thing that cooked properly, I scooped out all of what wasn’t cooked and flipped it over–that’s where the “boat” part of the name comes in, the little shape of it and all.
THE TEQUILA is where the margarita part of the name comes in, obviously . In an attempt to make it look kinda cute, I used my pink salt to make a salted rim–and for the frosting, though I did use a good chunk of confectioner’s sugar (okay I didn’t use all of my good and healthy ingredients for this recipe like I should have, I’m sorry) I did not have food coloring around nor did I want to–so I took an avocado and blended it with the sugar, vegan butter (Earth Balance – Whipped Butter, no soy, not sure what is in it actually now that I think about it…but not buying it again because it did weird me out a little bit, it’s like, okay so it’s vegan and doesn’t have soy–WHAT THE HELL IS IN THIS TUB THEN ANYWAY?) and shazam! You have a green-ish frosting for the lime margarita cuppy. I used an entire avocado and still only achieved a light green color, but oh well .
So if you fuck up a cupcake–turn your “FuCupCake” into a boat bite! (Bite because it’s really no bigger than a bite-size, which actually makes it a perfect hors d’oeuvres .
“Relatively Healthy Bakin’ Bacon Eggplant”
Serving size: 2 Awesome Ass Individuals
Prep time: About 15-20 minutes
Total cooking time: 25 minutes (depends on thickness of eggplant and how you cut it; may be more or less a few minutes)
Calories: Who gives a fuck? This is fabulous and the quality of ingredients is superb for the taste factor and for your innards! (AKA, nutrients and shit.)
–One large eggplant
–One tsp. of ghee (type of clarified butter—could substitute any other butter you may have around I’m sure, such as Earth Balance or plain butter or margarine.) or cooking spray for the pan. Ghee is more natural than cookng spray in my opinion, and 1 tsp has 45 calories so…it’s really not all that bad.
–Grapeseed oil (COLD-PRESSED IS BEST & HEALTHIEST! I suggest having the spout that lets out little droplets or else a brush so that you can evenly spread the oil across the eggplant on both sides. Could try using olive oil, but rumor has it that it goes rancid if above 120 degrees. Not sure about grapeseed oil which is why I gave that a try. Also very rich in vitamin E!)
–Small handful of walnuts (more or less depending on your likes/dislikes; really nice garnish that was harmonious with the other flavors!)
–Dried basil (can use fresh, but I’m not sure of the outcome—might be better )
–Crushed Coriander seeds (I used my garlic press to crush them then flaked them on each eggplant slice.)
–Black pepper (optional)
-Himalayan or Rock salt (optional, but I hear the nutritional benefits are good for ya’!)
–Pink salt (way easier to use than grinding a big ol’ rock…)
–Lemon juice (about 1/4 of a fresh lemon)
–Bacon (1 or 2 slices, cut in half to make a total of 4 pieces [2 on each eggplant])
–Raw goat cheese (I used block style sharp cheddar; I’m sure you could mix it up and do shredded cheese or other flavors. Pepperjack may be boss!)
–Kale (2 stalks)
–Spinach (1 big handful for cooking and 1 small for presentation/side salad)
–Grape tomatoes (for side salad–I used four and cut each in half, do what you like!)
–Dressing for side-salad –I used chipotle cheddar, WAS DELICIOUS. Wish I added sirracha to this dish now because I mixed some of that dressing with the eggplant once it was done…nom nom.
–Pasta sauce (1/3 to 1/2 cup–mine was organic port & asiago cheese flavor, however you can adjust to your personal preferences)
–Sundried tomatoes (1/4 cup roughly)
–2 Servings of white wine (for yourself, obviously. It makes cooking so much more fun and inviting!)
Step, Baby, Step, Sex is a …wait, getting off track, my bad.
PS, please do read this recipe at least once through rather than just winging it. I may hate reading recipes, but I’d hate for you to go through all of this labor and then forget something simple which may annihilate the quality of your meal. Awareness is key in cooking AND LIFE! (I learned that the hard way -_-.)
To maintain your interest, here’s a picture I took of myself because I thought it was clever. It’s really not, but I like it anyway.
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees
- Take your eggplant and cut off the stem/leaves. (Rinse it off first, regardless if it’s organic or not. Never know who was touching that eggplant before you picked it up!)
- Cut the eggplant vertically in half. Make sure you cut it directly in half so that both sides will cook properly.
- Spoon out the flesh of each side until you think that you have enough room to lay all of your fixings on there. If you don’t mind cutting through more eggplant while taking bites, then don’t take out much eggplant. However, I find it a rather tough veggie, so I like it on the thinner side—like potato-skin style with just a tad bit more potato! (I did not keep the flesh, but feel free to cook it with your veggie bacon blend. I’ll explain this a little more momentarily.)
- Spray a pan with cooking spray or spread with the 1 tsp. of ghee, which is what I used. Just get down and dirty by measuring out 1 tsp. and then use your hands to rub it in the pan (type of cookie sheet is best). Odds are you won’t be able to get it to spread all across the pan, so just try to get it in the places where you think the 2 eggplant slices will grace its presence.
- Take grapeseed oil (if you have a spout in which it drizzles rather than pours out, which is what I have that worked well for me. Otherwise if you have a brush, just pour some on the center of each eggplant and then spread it across from top to bottom, left to right, on both sides. Hands and fingers work, too!
- With the eggplant facing up, to your liking load on the black pepper, Himalayan salt (optional), and dried basil. Take your coriander seeds and press them down so they break up a bit. I used a garlic press and then sprinkled them on each eggplant slice. You could try laying them on a cutting board then using pushing the flat side of the knife down on the seeds in attempt to crush them. I tried this, didn’t work for me, but perhaps it will work for you. Sprinkle all of the spices evenly over your eggplant slices.Normally, eggplant looks more fresh than this–apparently I waited a little too long to use it, woops!)
- Once you have finished that, flip the eggplant so that the scooped side is facing down (opposite direction of the picture listed above) so that the skin of it is upward/facing you. Put into the oven and set timer for 15 minutes
- Make sure that the scooped side of the eggplant is facing down first. You want both sides to cook, but you want the fixings to be cooked so that they are upright, facing you. Very important!
- While they eggplant is baking, gather your 1-2 strips of bacon and cut it into 4 pieces. Turn your stovetop on low and cook each on one side (WITHOUT flipping; resist the temptation, you can do it) for 5 minutes.
- While the bacon is working on sizzlin’, cut up your red onion (as little or as much as you like—I used about ¼ of a regular sized onion and cut it into small, bite-size cubes). Throw on top of bacon. Stirring is not necessary.
- Feel free to throw in some more spices if you like—black pepper, Himalayan salt, basil, or mix it up! Ginger might be a good addition.
- Once the 5 minutes are up, flip the bacon on its other side and continue to cook on low for an additional 5 minutes. Push the red onions to the side so that the bacon is directly on the pan.
- While that is cooking, do some prep work by cutting up some sundried tomatoes (I used about ¼ cup), 2 stalks of kale (I just picked these bad boys apart, was quick and easy). Sip on that wine as well.
- Once the 5 minutes is up for this side of the bacon, increase the heat to medium on your stovetop and add in the sundried tomatoes and kale.
- Again, once this side of bacon has cooked for 5 minutes (so bacon should have been cooking for a total of 10 minutes, 5 minutes per side on low heat each time), turn the heat up to medium and throw in the veggies that you just cut up. Cook these and stir regularly for another 5 minutes. Squeeze some lemon juice to help reduce the toughness of the kale and sundried tomatoes. Doesn’t matter if you flip the bacon around or not, I did anyway.
- One or two minutes before the last 5 minutes is up, stir in 1 large handful of spinach (it cooks quicker than the rest of the vegetables, hence the delay).
- After spinach appears to be slightly wilted-looking in appearance, add in about 1/3 to 1/2 cup of your desired pasta sauce. I liked the port & asiago blend that I got, but feel free to experiment!
- Turn the heat off after the 5 minutes is up. Continue to stir for a minute or so you feel it’s necessary (will continue to cook after the heat’s off because the pan is still hot, obviously…so you’re good ).
- Scoop an even amount of your fixing blend equally and evenly into each eggplant slice.
- After you’ve cleared the pan of its goodies, crush a handful of walnuts with your hand and throw them into the pan on medium heat. Cook for about a minute.
- While that’s cooking, take your cheese and place it on top of the eggplant slices. I just cut up a few slices of goat cheese and put a couple on; you could skip the cheese if you want to, it’s just that I have a sick love affair with it so I don’t think that I could do such a thing. I’m from Wisconsin, so naturally cheese runs through my veins.
- After the crumbled walnuts have cooked for a minute or two, evenly place them on each eggplant slice. Use a small spoon if you need to.
- Place the sliced eggplants in the oven for 10 minutes. May want to do more or less depending on how thick your eggplant is (how much or little of the flesh you took out, size of eggplant as a whole, etc.). I did 10 minutes and it was fine, could’ve used a minute or two but didn’t want to risk crazily overcooking my greens.
- Take them out of the oven and top off with some black pepper and Himalayan salt.
- Grab some spinach, cut up some grape tomatoes and put them on the side to make the entree as a whole look all nice and pretty. I used a chipotle cheddar dressing—was delicious and even mixed it with a few bites of my eggplant. Yum!
- Watch Law & Order SVU and see if you can keep your attention span on that moreso than your awesome meal. I had a hard time doing so, hence this additional photo.
“Cranberry Cupcakes with an Almond Frosting“
- ¼ Cup of milk (I used 2%, but normally use unsweetened hemp milk due to personal preferences)
- 3 Cups of fresh, raw cranberries
- 1 ½ Cups brown sugar (measured loosely, not packed)
- ½ Cup distilled water
- ½ Teaspoon of allspice (optional, but did seem to add good flavor)
- ½ Cup white sugar
- 1 ½ Cups 100% whole wheat flour
- 3 Tablespoons corn starch
- 2 Heaping teaspoons baking powder
- ½ Teaspoon salt
- 1 Tablespoon almond extract
- 5 Tablespoons Earth Balance Whipped butter (Probably could use different, but this is my preferred brand and type for all of my baking endeavors) (measure 5 tablespoons, then melt)
- 2 Eggs (I personally prefer organic, free-range brown eggs, but it’s up to you)
- Dashes of cinnamon (optional)
- 1 ¼ Cups powdered sugar (confectioner’s sugar)
- 2 Teaspoons almond extract
- Tablespoons Earth Balance butter
- 1/3 Cup almonds
- 4 Teaspoons sour cream (I used Kemp’s Light, but I wouldn’t recommend going any lighter in fat than that)
- Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees fahrenheit.
- I’ve heard that it’s bad to have excess batter sit out for long, so to spare some time, if you use cupcake liners, grab your cupcake pan and place the liners in prior to doing anything else. This way you’re all set and ready to go when it comes to getting these lovelies in the oven.
- Rinse the 3 cups of cranberries; lay them on a paper towel (do so slowly, otherwise they may roll off of your work space and pat them dry with a paper towel (mostly dry is okay too).
- Put all cranberries in a medium to large sized skillet on the stove top; also add 1 ½ cups brown sugar, ½ cup distilled water, and ½ teaspoon allspice.
- Stir together all ingredients constantly until all (or at least the majority) of the cranberries have “popped”—you will hear a popping sound indicating that a cranberry has been cooked. Rather than keeping track of the sounds, just look to see if there is a crack/cut in each cranberry. Takes about 10 minutes to cook all of them.
- Grab a bowl and pour in cranberry mixture. Stir in ½ cup of white sugar until well-combined. Set aside to cool. (Scent will be strong because of allspice, but taste is divinely sweet and tart—test it yourself!)
- In a second bowl, whisk together 1 ½ cups 100% whole wheat flour, 3 tablespoons corn starch, 2 heaping teaspoons baking powder, and ½ teaspoon salt. I used a fork for whisking and that worked out just fine.
- Get a third bowl. Combine the 1 tablespoon almond extract, 5 tablespoons earth balance butter (melted), and 2 eggs. Using a blender, make sure the ingredients are well-incorporated.
- Take the cranberry blend and pour it into the third bowl listed in step 6 (it’s okay if it is warm; just as long as it’s not beyond that [aka no “ouch” feeling when you stick your finger in the batter’).
- Use the blender again to mix the ingredients together. Feel free to add dashes of cinnamon to your liking/taste (but it is optional). Do so for about three minutes (longer if you want minimal/small cranberry flesh chunks; less if you want bigger chunks of flesh) or until all the ingredients are well-combined.
- If using mini cupcake liners, put about 2 teaspoons of batter in each cupcake liner. I usually do one teaspoon in each liner, then after having filled all of the liners, repeat by filling each liner with one more teaspoon of batter. (I did not test this using a regular/average-sized cupcake/muffin pan, so you may have to use about two tablespoons for that per cupcake liner instead.) (AND YES I know they don’t look attractive, but trust me on this one: they will look JUST FINE after being cooked and even better when topped off with a glorious whipped up almond frosting).
- Place cupcakes in middle rack of oven and cook for 20-25 minutes. Check at 20 minutes and use a toothpick to see if it is cooked all the way through (mine ended up needed to cook until 25 minutes because I’d take a bite through one and the cake part wouldn’t be fully cooked through, or at least didn’t seem to taste like it did). You take the toothpick and place it in the very center of the cupcake, and if the toothpick comes off clean (no batter/cake-y parts), then it should typically be done.
**Odds are, you will have leftover batter. I ended up making two batches of mini cupcakes, totaling 48 cupcakes. However, I did use more batter for the second batch because I didn’t want to cook another batch.
- Crack open a Stella for all of that tedious labor and work on the frosting while your cupcakes are a cookin’!
- Take the 1/3 cup of almonds and turn it into a very fine, grainy texture using a food processor. (Could skip the food processor and throw the almonds in plastic zip-bag, then take a rolling pin (or maybe your empty bottle of Stella) and roll over the bag, making the almonds as fine as possible (unless you would like chunks of almond in your frosting). Set aside.
- Grab the blender once again and blend together 1 ¼ cups powdered (confectioner’s) sugar, 2 teaspoons vanilla extract, 5 tablespoons Earth Balance butter, 4 teaspoons sour cream, and five tablespoons of the finely processed almonds. Keep the leftover almond sprinkles to use as a garnish over the frosting.
**At first, I thought the frosting was too thick, so I added 1 tablespoon of distilled water—terrible idea! The water not only took away from the aesthetics of the frosting but also made it much more liquid-y, making it difficult to frost on the cupcakes. I considered using milk originally, but I think either way it would still become watered down. Adding more sour cream perhaps would have been a better idea.
“What Ever Do I Do With This Leftover Frosting?: PB Energy Bites”
I’m sure I’m not alone in this, and also I am kind of a prude at times when it comes to minimizing food waste/costs, so I try to use all of my leftovers from baking and use them in “experiments”. I took a peek through my refrigerator noticed that I had some peanut butter left, and since I used almonds in the frosting, I thought why not throw this natural, organic crunchy peanut butter in the frosting mix? I took about ½ cup (start out small, then add more as you please—I just really like the taste of peanut butter) and mixed it together. No blender required—just elbow grease and a sturdy spoon.
Okay, cool, so I had this peanut butter, almond frosting kind of blend…what to do with it now? I had about one cup (maybe a little over) of Uncle Sam’s Unsweetened Cereal to the mix—using once again a spoon and some elbow grease—and then used my fingers (too sticky to roll into balls with my hands) to form into balls. I measured out 1 tablespoon of the mixture to make 1 ball for the sake of portion control. Place that golden glory in the freezer for one hour—and voila! A slightly naughty, but still fairly nutritious (natural peanut butter + unsweetened cereal combined of raw flax seeds, oats, and so on). It’s literally the perfect salty-sweet snack, and something that would be great to take to parties!
Do keep in mind that how much frosting you have left is going to be dependent on how much you put on the cupcakes, so the amount of cereal and peanut butter used could vary. Also, feel free to substitute—might be really good with grape nuts, or maybe even something like chia seeds!
I love making extra food; but I hate wasting ingredients. I needed to use up the cranberries before they got too ripe, there was barely enough sour cream to add to anything else that I could think of, and as for almonds—they seemed like a neutral enough (but still flavorful) ingredient to add to the cranberries to kind of balance out the cupcakes as a whole.
Grab another Stella, a cupcake, kick back the recliner, and watch some good old classy Jerry Springer. Enjoy!