Posts tagged ‘Breakfast’

Blueberry-Cheddar Fritters

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Sometimes the best inspiration for new recipes comes not from a wealth of ingredients, but from a dearth of them. Such was the case when, as I tried to use up my perishables at the end of the week, I found myself with a ton of blueberries, a block of organic cheddar, and not much else.

I searched the web for blueberry cheddar recipes, and found this amazing concoction at Omnomicon (it’s worth clicking just to see the gorgeous picture) and I would have followed it faithfully, but I could not. The original recipe calls for making two batches of pancakes – one blueberry and one cheddar – but I didn’t have enough baking powder or flour for that. I did, however, have more than enough cheese and berries, so they went together into a single batch of pancakes that ended up being absolutely delicious.

Not quite pancakes, not quite fritters, this recipe brought diverse flavours together even better than I’d hoped. The savoury flavours of the cheddar and olive oil stand out while the sugar and vanilla add a subtle depth, and the blueberries add a refreshing burst of sweetness. All that, and they’re just as easy to make as regular pancakes. I hope you enjoy them as much as we did.

Blueberry-Cheddar Fritters
Serves 4 – 6

1½ cups whole wheat flour
¼ cup sugar
1 Tablespoon baking powder
2 Tablespoons ground flax seeds
1½ cups water (or soymilk, if you have it)
3 Tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
¾ fresh blueberries

  1. In a large mixing bowl, mix together the flour, sugar, baking powder, and flax seeds until well combined.
  2. Add water, olive oil and vanilla and stir until just mixed. Note: The olive oil adds a lovely, savoury flavour to the fritters but if you would rather use a lighter tasting oil (like corn or canola or safflower), that would work too.
  3. Fold in the cheese and the blueberries, but don’t overmix.
  4. Lightly oil a skillet or frying pan, and heat over medium-high heat. Add batter ¼ cup at a time for best results.
  5. Cook until the edges of each fritter are solid, and the middles begin to bubble (about 3 minutes).
  6. Flip and cook 2 – 3 minutes on the other side, or until golden brown.
  7. Repeat with remaining batter and serve immediately.
  8. You can also freeze these for later in any freezer-safe container. Thaw them in a pan or toaster oven, but don’t refreeze ones that have already been thawed. This can be dangerous when dairy is involved.

August 15, 2009 at 1:16 pm Leave a comment

No-Fail Fruit Salad

No-Fail Fruit SaladThere’s nothing like fruit salad on a hot summer’s day. It’s refreshing yet filling, and it’s a great way to take advantage of all of the great fruits that come available at this time of year.

This recipe can be used with any fruits you like. The dressing is versatile enough to tackle anything from berries to apples to tropical fruits. Unfortunately, even with the touch of balsamic vinegar in the recipe, the fruits start to brown within about 30 minutes – so make this salad just before you intend to eat it. I find that a half batch a nice meal for two people, and a full batch is great for dinner parties and potlucks.

For potlucks, you can assemble the dressing at home and then bring the fruits with you and toss it all up just before eating time. If you want to eat the salad all week at home, you can mix up the dressing and then toss a bit of it with freshly chopped fruits just before eating. The dressing will keep for about a week in the fridge.

No Fail Fruit Salad
Makes 4 – 6 large servings, or 8 – 10 small ones

6 – 10 cups fruit (depending on how saucy you want your salad to be)
(I used: 2 cups banana, 2 cups pineapple, 2 cups strawberries)

¾ cup vanilla yogurt (or ¾ cup plain yogurt and ⅛ teaspoon vanilla)
1 Tablespoon real maple syrup
¼ tsp. balsamic vinegar
¼ tsp. cinnamon
2 Tablespoons poppyseeds

  1. In a small bowl, combine the yogurt, vanilla (if using), syrup, vinegar, cinnamon, and poppyseeds.
  2. In a large bowl, combine chopped fruit.
  3. Toss fruit with dressing and serve.

June 27, 2009 at 11:29 am 2 comments

Peach Smoothie

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As has probably become apparent by now, smoothies are my favourite way to start the day. They’re delicious and easy to make, they’re full of fibre and nutrients, and they provide a great way to pack the reccomended servings of fruits and vegetables into your day. This particular smoothie is a great way to use up peaches that have gone a bit soft, but you can also use frozen peaches to enjoy this recipe year round. In fact, keeping a bag of frozen fruit around can make it even easier to whip up a morning smoothie, even on busy days.

Peach Smoothies
Makes 1 large or 2 small servings

1 banana (about 1 cup)
2 small peaches (about 1½ cups)
¾ cup orange juice
½ cup soymilk
pinch of cinnamon (optional)

  1. Peel and chop the banana into a few large chunks. Remove the peach pits (you can leave the skin on), and chop the peaches into large chunks.
  2. Combine the fruit, juice, soymilk and cinnamon (if using) in a blender, and blend until smooth. Enjoy!

June 20, 2009 at 11:41 am Leave a comment

Lemon Blueberry Muffins

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I don’t like to brag, but these may just be the best muffins that I have ever made. They are light, moist and bursting with a sweet lemony flavour, while the blueberries provide an occasional mellow, fruity balance. They also rise nicely, creating perfectly golden brown tops on moist, cakey muffin bottoms.

The yogurt in these muffins acts as a replacement for most of the oil that you would find in traditional muffin recipes, making them lower fat without losing the muffins’ moist texture. This does mean that the muffins lack a certain non-stick quality, though, so paper or silicon liners are highly recommended.

Lemon Blueberry Muffins (Lower Fat)
Makes 12 Muffins

2 cups whole wheat flour
½ cup sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon salt
1 Tablespoon ground flax seeds
¾ cup plain (nonfat) yogurt
1 cup soymilk
1 Tablespoon lemon juice or apple cider vinegar
2 Tablespoons safflower oil (or other light tasting oil, like corn or canola)
2 Tablespoons lemon zest
¾ cup blueberries

  1. Preheat the oven to 400F. Place paper liners in a standard muffin tin (or grease the muffin tin well. Spray with oil and sprinkle with flour to prevent sticking). Set muffin tin aside.
  2. In a large bowl, mix up dry ingredients (including flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and ground flax seed) and combine them well.
  3. Next add the wet ingredients (including yogurt, soymilk, vinegar, oil, lemon zest, and blueberries) and combine them well with the dry ingredients.
  4. Fill up the muffin tins with the batter (fill them almost all the way up to ensure good muffin tops) and bake for 18 – 20 minutes.
  5. Let cool completely before removing from muffin tin or liners. The relative lack of oil makes them especially sticky when they are still warm, but they should come out with no problems once they cool down.

Adapted from 1000 Vegetarian Recipes by Carol Gelles

June 14, 2009 at 12:01 pm 3 comments

Banana Orange Smoothie

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You may think I’m on a bit of a smoothie kick lately, but the truth is that we’ve been having smoothies almost every morning for years. It only just occurred to me to start posting about them. With their combination of whole fruits and protein, smoothies provide vitamins, fibre, and energy to last until lunchtime. They are also delicious.

This morning’s version is pretty simple – bananas, orange juice, soymilk. The maple syrup and cardamom lend nice sweet and spicy flavors, but can be omitted if you don’t have them around. The race cars? They are a metaphor for how you will feel after drinking up – small, plastic and from a Kinder Surprise egg? Full of energy and ready to go? You decide.

Banana Orange Smoothie
1 large or 2 small servings

2 bananas, torn into large chunks
1 cup orange juice
½ cup soymilk
1 tsp. maple syrup (optional)
⅛ tsp. ground cardamom (optional)

  1. Combine ingredients in a blender (I prefer a hand blender like this one for quicker, quieter, more complete blending and easier clean-up – and no, I haven’t been paid to say that). Blend until smooth.
  2. Serve with race cars.

April 4, 2009 at 12:30 pm Leave a comment

Chase-Away-Those-Winter-Blues Smoothie

img_66451Winter is coming to an end and I’m really craving the fresh fruits and vegetables that spring promises to bring. Luckily, I have a big bag of frozen blueberries and a yummy smoothie recipe to tide me over in the meantime.

Chase-Away-Those-Winter-Blues Smoothie
Makes 1 large or 2 small servings

¾ cup frozen blueberries
1 banana, chopped into big chunks
1 cup pineapple juice
1½ Tbsp. coconut milk

  1. Combine ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth.

(Note: wild blueberries are smaller than their cultivated counterparts and may blend more smoothly without being thawed).

March 3, 2009 at 7:06 pm 2 comments

Banana Flaxseed Freezer Waffles

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Happy Valentine’s Day, friends! I don’t know about you, but I feel strongly that almost any holiday is a good excuse for brunch. Valentine’s Day, President’s Day, Sunday; all of these are key brunch-eating opportunities. That’s part of what makes this waffle recipe so fabulous – it makes enough waffles for you to eat on all the days, for at least a week, I’d say. I’m a big fan of making a big batch, eating way too many, and then freezing the rest for later. Wait until they are completely cool and then throw them in a freezer-grade zipper bag and they are ready to go in the freezer. Then toast them and eat them later.

This recipe is adapted (beyond recognition, I should think) from my trusty 1975 edition of the Joy of Cooking. I doubled the recipe, used whole wheat flour instead of white and quadrupled the egg replacers for big, fluffy vegan waffles. If you don’t have a waffle maker, you could make some pretty great pancakes from the same batter.

Banana Flaxseed Freezer Waffles

2 very ripe bananas, mashed (about 2 cups pulp)
2 Tbsp. ground flaxseed
½ cup canola or safflower oil
3½ cups whole wheat flour
1½ Tbsp. baking powder
½ tsp. salt
3 cups soymilk
1 cup walnuts, chopped (optional – see tip below, if using)

  1. In a large mixing bowl, mashed bananas until no large lumps remain.
  2. Add flaxseeds, oil, flour, baking powder, salt and  soymilk. Mix well.
  3. Fold in the walnuts, being careful not to overmix.
  4. Bake in your waffle maker, following the manufacturer’s instructions.
  5. If freezing, let cool completely and then freeze waffles in a freezer-grade zipper bag.

Tip: This simple method makes chopping walnuts super-easy. Place walnuts in a large zipper bag and seal it. Crush the walnuts into small pieces by rolling a sturdy rolling pin (or unopened wine bottle) over the bag. Done!

February 14, 2009 at 7:27 pm 1 comment

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*All entries tagged "vegan" and "gluten free" meet those dietary requirements to the best of my knowledge as long as the vegan or gluten free instructions are followed (where applicable). It is always wise to double-check ingredients (especially when dealing with packaged foods) and to confirm ingredients and preparation methods at restaurants.