Monthly Archives: September 2014

Tempeh Portobello Potstickers

Tempeh Portobello Potstickers | real food. home made.


  • 48 wonton wrappers
  • 1 T sesame oil
  • 8 oz tempeh, crumbled
  • 6 oz portobello mushrooms, chopped small
  • 2 T ginger, minced
  • 1 cup cabbage, grated
  • 1 cup carrot, grated
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 T liquid aminos
  • 3 green onions, chopped
  • 1 T rice vinegar
  • coconut oil for frying


  1. Prep all of your ingredients.
  2. In a large frying pan or wok, heat the sesame oil over medium heat.  Add crumbled tempeh, mushrooms and ginger.
  3. Once the tempeh starts to brown and the mushrooms are wilted, add in the cabbage, carrot, and garlic, and cook for a few minutes.
  4. Add in the liquid aminos and rice vinegar.  Then the green onions.
  5. Remove from heat and let cool.
  6. Prepare your workstation!  Fill a custard cup with water, and prepare a clean dry surface.
  7. Lay out one wonton wrapper at a time, fill with about a tablespoon of filling, dip your finger in the water to wet the edges of the wrapper, and then pinch the edges together so they stick.  Repeat 48 times.  (Or if you’re like me, do 8-10 at a time).
  8. Use this time for meditation.  Meticulous potsticker stuffing will be only as annoying or as rewarding as you make it.
  9. Heat a bit of coconut oil in a large frying pan or electric skillet over medium-high heat (let’s just go ahead and say 7, can we say 7?)  Add 8-10 potstickers to the pan.  When they reach your desired level of golden brown, add a splash of water and cover with a lid to give them a little steam.  I turn off the heat at this point.
  10. Cook the rest of your batches and then you will finally finally be done!

Hope the party guests tonight like my new concoction!

Optional Dipping Sauce:

  • 1/4 cup rice vinegar
  • 1/4 cup liquid aminos
  • 1/2 garlic clove, minced
  • 1/2 t ginger, minced
  • 1/2 t sesame oil
  • 1/4 t red pepper flakes
  • 1 t chopped green onion


Filed under Appetizers, Potluck, Vegetarian

Peanut Butter Sriracha Omelette

Peanut Butter Sriracha Omelette | real food. home made.

Hopefully you are not skeptical at all about this breakfast invention of mine.  If you have ever spent the night at my house, there is a good chance you’ve been served a “peanut butter omelette”, which I consider my “super protein breakfast”.  The sriracha takes it up a notch!  You’ve got to try it!

Peanut Butter Sriracha Omelette


  • 2 organic pastured eggs
  • 1 T natural peanut butter
  • drizzle of sriracha (to taste)
  • sea salt and black pepper
  • small morsel of grass-fed butter


  1. Melt your butter in a small skillet.  Crack 2 eggs into the pan, smash the yolks and whites so that the two eggs become one even egg layer.  Grind salt and pepper on top to taste.  Cover the pan with a lid and cook until most of the egg is set – you will know when it is time to flip!
  2. Flip the egg over, turn off the heat, and let it finish cooking for about 30 seconds.
  3. Transfer to a plate and drizzle sriracha over one half, and spread peanut butter over the other.  Fold the two halves together to create the “omelette”.

You will enjoy this I promise!   I am not much of a cheese person, and the peanut butter here acts as the cheesy element that most people enjoy with eggs.  Yummmmmm!!  Nutritious and delicious!  Guaranteed to keep you full until lunch time.

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Filed under Breakfast, Paleo, Vegetarian

Pesto Pasta with Brussels Sprouts and Apple Chicken Sausage

Pesto Pasta with Brussels Sprouts and Apple Chicken Sausage | real food. home made.

This is a fantastic quick, simple recipe to have in your arsenal.  In a pinch, grab some sausage and brussels sprouts on your way home from work and you can have a delicious dinner on the table in no time.  I almost always have pesto, parmesan, garlic and a variety of whole wheat pastas in stock at home.  One time, the store had no brussels sprouts, so I roasted up some zucchini “coins” instead.  That was okay, but nothing like the brussels sprouts.

Pesto Pasta with Brussels Sprouts and Apple Chicken Sausage


  • 1 lb brussels sprouts, trimmed and sliced in half
  • 3 T extra virgin olive oil, divided
  • 1/2 t each of sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 12-16 oz whole wheat orecchiette or Tinykada brown rice pasta or pasta of choice (I use 14 oz)
  • 4 chicken & apple sausage links, sliced medium (or any other sausage that you like, just make sure you recognize all the ingredients on the label)
  • 5 cloves garlic, sliced thin
  • 1/2 cup pesto (I never dirty a measuring cup, just spoon in however much you prefer)
  • 1/4 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese, plus extra for serving


  1. Preheat the oven to 400º.
  2. Slice brussels sprouts, and add them to a bowl with 2 T EVOO and the salt and pepper.  Mix gently and spread them out on a baking sheet lined with aluminum foil.
  3. Bake for about 30 minutes, or until sprouts are tender and crispys are crispy.
  4. Cook your pasta according to package directions while slicing your garlic and sausage links.
  5. When pasta is cooked, add it to a large bowl with the pesto, parmesan, and the finished brussels sprouts.
  6. In a large skillet, heat 1 T of olive oil over medium-high heat and cook your sausage links until they are browned.  During the last minute of cooking, add in the garlic.
  7. Add your garlic and sausage to the bowl with the rest of the ingredients, stir together, and then serve!

Adapted from Gimme Some Oven

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Filed under Dinner Ideas

Spinach Quinoa Flax Balls

Spinach Quinoa Flax Balls | real food. home made.


  • 1 cup red or white quinoa (or blend of both)
  • 1 3/4 cups organic free-range chicken broth
  • 2 boxes of frozen spinach, defrosted and water thoroughly squeezed out
  • 1 yellow onion, diced
  • 5 tablespoons melted butter (grass-fed)
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 t ground black pepper
  • 1/2 t sea salt
  • 3 T tomato paste
  • 1/4 cup almond flour
  • 1/4 cup oat flour (make sure oats are gluten-free if allergic)
  • 1/2 cup ground flaxseed
  • 6 eggs, beaten
  • 1/3 cup parmesan cheese


  1. Bring quinoa and chicken broth to a boil, cover, reduce heat, and cook for 20 minutes.
  2. Make your flour mixture by adding a handful of almonds and a handful of old-fashioned oats to a food processor and grind – Make a 1/2 cup of flour total.
  3. Mix quinoa, flour, and all other ingredients together in a large bowl.
  4. Refrigerate for an hour or overnight.
  5. Preheat oven to 350*
  6. Grease baking sheet with coconut oil or butter.
  7. Roll mixture into balls and bake for 20-30 minutes.

These are so pretty!  If you use red quinoa, the red and green colour scheme make them perfect for bringing to Holiday parties!

Adapted from Lauren Kelly Nutrition

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Filed under Appetizers, Gluten Free, Potluck, Snacks, Vegetarian

Rosemary Salmon Risotto

Rosemary Salmon Risotto | real food. home made.

This creamy risotto is perfect for a cool fall evening.  Haven’t made risotto before? Don’t fret!  It is not as difficult as you think.  The trick is to have all your ingredients prepped, measured, and ready to go at a moment’s notice.  As I was making this yesterday, it came time to add the wine and I couldn’t find my wine bottle opener.  Talk about a risotto disaster!

Rosemary Salmon Risotto

Serves: 4

  • 1 pound salmon, preferably wild-caught
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 fresh 6″ rosemary sprigs, chopped
  • sea salt and black pepper
  • 3 T grass-fed butter
  • 1 shallot, minced
  • 1 cup of chopped mushrooms (shiitake or any you prefer)
  • 1 cup arborio rice
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine
  • 4 cups chicken stock or broth (organic & free-range, preferably homemade)
  • 1 bunch fresh asparagus, top 2/3 of each stalk chopped into thirds then blanched
  • 1/2 cup frozen peas, thawed
  • 1 T fresh lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup sun dried tomatoes, chopped
  • 1 additional chopped rosemary sprig
  • 1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan or Pecorino cheese (or a blend)
  • freshly ground black pepper, to taste


  1. Preheat oven to 425º
  2. Mince garlic and 2 rosemary sprigs.
  3. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper, set the salmon skin side down, and season with garlic, rosemary, salt and papper.
  4. Pour chicken stock in a pot and bring to a boil.  Keep a ladle nearby.
  5. In a separate pot of fairly large size, heat your butter over medium heat.
  6. Add shallot, mushrooms, and a pinch of salt, and sauté for 1-2 minutes.
  7. Add the rice, and cook another 4-5 minutes, stirring constantly.
  8. Add the wine, and stir until almost all liquid is absorbed.
  9. Add one ladle full of stock at a time, stirring intermittently, waiting for the previous liquid to be absorbed before you add the next.  You are going to have to stir quite often.  Not constantly, but often.
  10. When the stock is half gone, roast salmon for about 12-14 minutes or until it is flaky.
  11. When the stock is almost gone, add your asparagus, peas, sun-dried tomatoes, additional rosemary and lemon juice to the rice.
  12. Continue stirring and tasting your rice until it is no longer chewy.
  13. Remove your pot from the heat and stir in the cheese.
  14. Garnish with freshly ground black pepper.
  15. Top with salmon and enjoy.

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Filed under Dinner Ideas, Gluten Free

Grass-Fed Corn Dog Bites

Grass Fed Corn Dog Bites | real food. home made.

This advertisement came in the mail yesterday, and I burst out laughing.  I am going to start collecting these prime examples of our country’s sickening problem with food.  We are equating the word “protein” with “corn dog”?  How did we let this happen?  Protein is one of the prime building blocks of life, I feel so sorry that the word has to appear so large alongside this abominable “edible food product”.

However, corn dogs are not inherently bad.  I believe that as long as you make a dish home made from quality real food ingredients, nothing is off limits!  Not even corn dogs.  Following is a recipe for mini corn dog bites – they are an excellent appetizer to bring to a superbowl party, or any other gathering under the sun (except maybe a vegan potluck).

Grass-Fed Corn Dog Bites | real food. home made. 

Grass-Fed Corn Dog Bites

Yield: 36 mini-muffins


Now, contrast that list with the State Fair corndog ingredients:

Grass-Fed Corn Dog Bites | real food. home made.

When reading the labels on packaged food products, ask yourself the question: “Are these the ingredients I would use to make this item”?  If the answer is no, which it will be more often than not, do not risk it.  Remember, your body is not a garbage can.


  1. Preheat oven to 375º
  2. Whisk butter and sugar together, add eggs, then buttermilk, whisking them all together.
  3. Whisk dry ingredients in a seperate bowl: cornmeal, flour, baking soda and salt.
  4. Combine wet and dry ingredients.
  5. Spray a mini muffin pan with coconut oil.
  6. Add a glop of batter to, then press a hot dog section into the center of, each cup.  Each cup should be nearly full but not quite.
  7. Bake for about 15 minutes or until cornbread just starts to brown.
  8. Let them cool for as long as you can stand it, and then transfer to a tupperware to bring to the party.
  9. You can serve these at room temperature, or re-heat them in the oven for a bit at serving time.

Grass-Fed Corn Dog Bites | real food. home made.

Now that’s a fun source of protein I can get behind!

Adapted from Iowa Girl Eats

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Filed under Appetizers, Potluck, Snacks

How to Eat Real Food While Traveling

How to Eat Real Food While Traveling | real food. home made.

While on road trips or during traveling in general, it can be hard to find real food options. There are a lot of fast food and vending machine options, and not much available in terms of real food. In the airport, you can often find a variety of dried fruits and nuts in the book and magazine shops, and sometimes coffee shops will sell apples and bananas at their counters.

When I take road trips, I always bring a homemade “trail mix” concoction with me, and you will find me munching on it while sitting at the table at Wendy’s with my fast-food approving comrades. Don’t worry about looking silly, you will actually look smart.

I don’t like to order even the salads at fast food restaurants.  Just for example, I looked up the ingredients in Wendy’s Asian Cashew Chicken Salad and found:

Chicken Breast, Water, Seasoning (sea salt, maltodextrin, natural flavors, yeast extract, onion powder, garlic powder, sugar, gum Arabic, dextrose), Modified Corn Starch, Sodium Phosphates. Rubbed with Paprika and Spice.  Iceberg Lettuce, Romaine Lettuce, Spring Mix (baby Lettuces [red & green romaine, red & green oak, red & green leaf, lolla rosa, tango], spinach, mizuna arugula, tatsoi, red chard, green chard), Fire Roasted Edamame, Cucumber, Red Bell Peppers.  Cashews, Onion Garlic Seasoning (onion powder, garlic powder, salt), Canola Oil, Soy Lecithin, Sea Salt, Paprika, Cayenne Pepper. Water, Brown Sugar, Corn Syrup, Rice Vinegar, Chili Garlic Sauce (salted chili pepper [chili peppers, salt], garlic, sugar, rice vinegar, water, modified corn starch, acetic acid), Soybean Oil, Miso (water, organic soybeans, rice, salt, koji starter [aspergillus oryzae]), Lime Juice (water, lime juice concentrate, lime oil), Soy Sauce (water, soybeans, salt, alcohol), Cilantro, Ginger, Mustard Seed, Sea Salt, Garlic (dehydrated), Spice, Natural Flavor, Roasted Garlic, Guar Gum, Xanthan Gum, Extra Virgin Olive Oil, Red Pepper (dehydrated), Yeast Extract, Oleoresin Rosemary, Citric Acid. CONTAINS: SOY.

That is far too many ingredients for me.  Plus, I don’t like giving these companies my money.

When I get where I’m going I will stock up on my essentials.  Luckily in L.A. it was easy to find my favourite brands.

How to Eat Real Food While Traveling | real food. home made.

There solves the breakfast problem.  I always have to have my peanut butter banana toast within a half hour of waking up, or I get grumpy.  “Going out to breakfast” always takes so long; by the time everyone is finally showered, dressed and ready to go, and then you wait for a table, it is lunch time anyway!  Lunch and dinner are usually eaten out during vacation, and luckily in L.A. everything is free-range, grass-fed, and organic!

We had so much fun on our trip, I can’t wait to go back again someday.  My favourite part was probably the availability of real food.  Here in Michigan, the term is hardly, if ever, used.  I don’t even have any real foodist friends, do I?…..

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Filed under Nutrition, Snacks