Sunday, September 28, 2014

Gluten Free Apple Crisp

The kids and I went apple picking at my Great Grandparent's old farm by Hensel, ND.  We stopped to visit my Grandparents for a while and Grandma was making homemade apple crisp. The kids begged to stay at her house for supper and dessert but I already had our meal in the crock pot so I said we could make some apple crisp to eat at home. Thankfully that satisfied them until we got home and I got a reminder that I promised to make one.  So I started whipping this up.  I based it on an old recipe that I had, but made changes to create a gluten free apple crisp that is free of refined sugars.  It turned out delicious on the very first try! The hubby and kids were happy with the result which made me happy. They did eat it warm with a scoop of whipped cream on top.  I just ate it plain.  Very delicious!

You can use other fruits for this recipe too.  7-8 peeled & sliced peaches, 8-9 cups of blueberries or 8-9 cups of chopped rhubarb would be good substitutes.  Adjust your honey topping accordingly.  You can also easily cut this recipe in half and put in an 8x8 square pan.  Just don't forget to reduce the cooking time! If you don't have coconut sugar and don't want to buy any, you can use brown sugar, but that defeats the purpose of it being free of refined sugars.  Completely your choice!!

I know many people who aren't paleo, but require a gluten free recipe.  This isn't a paleo recipe, but a simple gluten free dessert option.  It is also a clean eating recipe.

Gluten Free Apple Crisp

7 to 9 medium sized apples (I used Honeycrisp, but other baking apples or crab apple would work)
2/3 cup butter, softened
1 1/4 cup Coconut Palm Sugar (I have also found some at Super Target)
1/2 cup coconut flour (I use Nutiva Organic Coconut Flour)
1 1/2 cups Gluten Free Whole Grain Rolled Oats (I have also found this at Hugo's)
1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon, plus more for sprinkling
1 1/2 teaspoons ground nutmeg
honey, to your taste

Grease a 9x13 glass pan with butter or coconut oil and preheat your oven to 350.  I like to make my crumb topping first so the apples don't have a whole lot of time to get brown after slicing.  In a bowl cream the butter & coconut sugar then add coconut flour, oats, cinnamon & nutmeg.  Combine with a fork.  Set the bowl aside.  Peel and slice up the apples and arrange on the bottom of the 9x13 pan.  Drizzle honey on top of the apples.  How much you put on is dependent on how tart your apples are and how sweet you want your dessert to be.  I just squirted it right out of the bottle, but I would say I used between 1/4 & 1/3 cup.  Sprinkle the cinnamon over top of the honey.  I also sprinkled this right out of the container but I would say there was about a teaspoon sprinkled over the top of the apples.  Place your crumb topping evenly on top and bake in oven 50 minutes to an hour.  Let cool a bit before you eat.  It's even better the next day re-heated.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014


Every August & September when my husband is out harvesting wheat I take supper out to the guys in the field.

Yes - I know - how I choose to eat doesn't directly correlate with how my family earns a living, but I choose not to get into that type of debate.  I fully support the farming community and I'm sorry if I lose followers because of that, but I have grown up in the Red River Valley where agriculture is the main source of income for so many people and businesses.  I do occasionally eat grains, but because I have found they can give me headaches I just don't eat them very often.  I prefer homemade buns/bread to store bought and whole wheat noodles (if I eat them).  The less processed you can make your food, the better it is.

ANYWAYS - I got off subject.  Oh yeah, taking supper out to the field.  I like to choose something that makes a large batch so I can feed my kids first and then take the rest out to the guys; 4 of them.  This was a great dish to make.  It's an old recipe I had laying around and can be made with either pasta or zoodles (zucchini noodles).  I chose the latter, obviously.  While this isn't a true paleo meal because it has cheese, we don't eat dairy as often as we used to so having cheese occasionally isn't going to hurt any of us.  My food critic son even told me that it was 'actually pretty darn good' with the zoodles. SCORE ONE FOR MOM!  The guys in the field also enjoyed it, unless they're lying to me!!

So - here's the recipe!  Make it how you want, but I highly recommend zoodles.  They really absorb the flavors of the dish and taste so delicious.  Plus you can't even tell the difference!  If you prefer to make this a totally paleo dish, you can use cashew cheese.  There are many recipes online.  I have yet to make it myself so I don't have any to recommend.  This is a clean eating recipe.

If you need a spiralizer for your veggies, I highly recommend this one!!


1/2 a large zucchini, peeled and made into raw noodles (about 6-8 fluffy cups worth - don't pack the noodles into a cup to measure - estimation works well with this recipe)*
1 pound ground beef
1/2 pound Italian turkey sausage (or pork sausage)
1/2 a medium onion, chopped
1 medium green pepper, chopped
5 ounce package of pepperoni slices, chopped (Check the ingredients on your pepperoni!  I use Applegate uncured pepperoni and sometimes add extra pepperoni to the dish just because we like it!)
2 15-ounce cans tomato sauce (or 1 28-ounce can)
1 pint fresh or homemade salsa
4 ounces sliced mushrooms
1/3 cup fresh grated Parmesan cheese
2 cups grated mozzarella cheese

Cook beef, sausage, onion and pepper until meat is browned in a large pot.  After meat is browned add pepperoni, tomato sauce, salsa & mushrooms.  Give a stir and let it simmer a little bit before adding the zoodles stirring to combine.  Then pour half the mixture into a greased 9x13 pan.  Top with 1 cup of the mozzarella cheese.  Add the remaining meat mixture and sprinkle with the rest of the mozzarella and Parmesan cheese.  Bake at 375 degrees for 30 minutes.  If the cheese gets too brown for you, you can cover the dish with foil at some point during baking.

*If you want to use wheat pasta, my original recipe was made with about 3/4 pound uncooked medium shell pasta.  Cook the noodles before you add them to the pasta and stir them in at the same time you would stir in the zoodles.

Friday, September 12, 2014

Dark Chocolate Mocha

It's chilly out today and as I wait for the kids to get home off the school bus I get hit with a bit of inspiration to make a mocha for an early afternoon pick-me-up.  This really hit the spot and was very delicious.  You can make it as sweet as you want. I prefer a minimally sweet flavor to my dark chocolate so I used right around 1 1/2 - 2 teaspoons of honey.  You can sweeten it to your own liking.  I used my immersion blender along with the blender cup to make this.  A regular blender or ninja-type appliance would work as well.

This is a paleo and clean eating food choice.

Dark Chocolate Mocha

8 oz of your favorite coffee
2 tablespoons coconut cream - I use AROY-D Coconut Cream
2-3 teaspoons honey (depending on how sweet you want your mocha)
2 teaspoons cacao powder - I use Healthworks Raw Certified Organic Cacao Powder

Before you brew your coffee, put your coconut cream, honey and cacao powder in your immersion blender cup.  Pour in your hot coffee then use immersion blender for about 20-30 seconds to mix well.  Pour the mocha back into your coffee cup and savor it.