Perfect food bar review & giveaway

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This morning I ate my last perfect food bar and I wanted to cry. There really is no better way to describe the nutritious bars than ‘perfect’.

Perfect food bar is a family business that started in the 90’s but the family’s love of health food and healthy living dates back to the 60’s when Dr. William Keith owned  the  health house gym and juice bar. Health has always been at the center of this family and in 1995  Keith mixed his whole food supplements with peanut butter and created “the perfect food bar” .

In 2005 the family put the delicious product on the market and today it is known as the best health food bar around. The bars contain over 20 nutrient rich  organic whole foods including a ton of veggies, nut butters, fruits , omegas and of course honey.  These bars are pure and delicious and contain no preservatives  which is why you can find them in the refrigerator section  of your natural foods store!

I love these bars for many reasons but most importantly is they are a great source of nutrients for my children. It is pretty hard to get kids to eat health food sometimes but these taste like a delicious treat and the kids devour them. They are also gluten free so I know I can bring them to playdates with my daughter gluten free friends and they can enjoy them too.

Perfect food bars come in a few different flavors including peanut butter, almond butter, cranberry, fruit and nut and carob and also come in mini sizes too! My personal favorite is the fruit and nut!  Find them in a local store near you HERE!

Perfect food bar sent me some bars for a giveaway and an awesome  (and super duper soft) shirt and some bars! Entering is simple here is how, enter once or all 3 times:

‘like’ perfect food bar on facebook and let me know that you did

‘like’ Mama Mouse on Facebook and let me know that you did

Comment here and tell me which perfect food bar you want to try! 

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Reader requests:green smoothie & jicama, red cabbage salad

This week I’ve had a couple of requests from lovely readers for recipes and just in time since I was in a lunch funk. I’ve been eating peanut butter & honey sandwiches for days and just have not been inspired enough to make anything else but after my dear readers requests I finally made something different.

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The first reader request was a green smoothie and I just happened to have a green energy pack from energy first. I admit I was a  bit scared to try this green food pack because of past gag worthy experiences but this one  was delicious; I didn’t taste any of the green superfood, just crisp apple and honey, yum!

What you need

  • 1 granny smith apple peeled and chopped, you can leave peel on for more fiber but the smoothie wont be as smooth
  • 3 c orange juice, I used a heaping spoonful of oj concentrate and 3 cups water
  • 2 tbsp raw honey , you can use regular also but raw contains bee pollen and all the nutritional goodness.
  • 1 pack green energy, optional but at only $1.50 a pack it’s worth trying!
  • 1 c spinach
  • 1 banana

How to make it

  • put it all in a blender and process until  it’s all smooth

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Another reader asked me to make a recipe using jicama to satisfy a craving they had and with the spring like weather sticking around a cold jicama salad sounded wonderful. This salad has a ton of cleansing fruits and veggies in it and really fills you up without slowing you down.

My daughter loved it because it was so colorful and I just loved all the flavors. This would be great with fish or grilled chicken but is also great in a big bowl on its own.

What you need

  • half a red cabbage
  • 1 carrot
  • 1/2 a granny smith apple
  • 1/2 jicama
  • 1/2 asian pear
  • handful of spinach
  • 1/4 c dried cranberries
  • sunflower & chia seeds to top
  • 2 tbsp dijon mustard
  • 1 tbsp honey
  • 3 tbsp oil of choice, I used olive oil
  • a bit of water

How to make it

  • mix dijon, honey and oil in a bowl
  • add a bit of water to thin it out
  • chip fruit and cabbage and shred carrots
  • toss in a bowl with honey dijon dressing
  • add cranberries
  • serve over a bowl of spinach
  • top with sunflower & chia seeds

zucchini fries & old bay aioli

zucchini fries & aioloI have been craving fish & chips, not just craving either I have been dreaming about it.  I didn’t want to use my pricey salmon on a deep fried dish and really I just couldn’t handle the grease either. My tummy has been a lot more sensitive since cutting out overly processed foods and I knew if I ate anything deep fried I would be sick for days.

My daughter suggested just making fries for lunch but I was saving the potatoes for my annual St.Patrick’s day calconnan dinner. Finally we both agreed that zucchini fries sounded like the best thing ever and if I made an old bay dip , it might just satisfy my fish & chips craving.

Not only  did this recipe satisfy my east coast food craving   but it was surprisingly like fish & chips, I mean it even kind of tastes like fish because of the old bay! This was so yummy and easy to make and the kiddo had a lot of fun helping and getting her hands messy. Next time I am making it for dinner so I can have a pint of beer too, I think then my craving will be truly satisfied.

What you need

  • 3 C panko
  • old bay
  • 4 eggs
  • 1/4 c flour
  • 2 zucchini
  • 1 lemon
  • 1 tsp mustard
  • 1/2 cup of olive oil/grape seed (or veggie oil of choice) mixed

How to make it

Aioli

  • with a hand blender or in an electric mixer put 2 egg yolks and a tsp of mustard
  • turn on mixer and whip up eggs for a few seconds
  • slowly and the juice of half of your lemon
  • slowly add the oil mixture until the aioli thickens
  • put it into a bowl and mix  in 1 tbsp old bay with a spoon
  • put into the fridge to cool until the fries are done

Zucchini fries

  • cut zucchini into wedges
  • put wedges into a bag with the flour  and a and let the kiddo shake it up until the zucchini is coated
  • in a bowl whisk together 2 eggs
  • in another bowl add panko & a bit of salt
  • dip the zucchini  one by one into the egg then into the bowl of panko and coat
  • put on a lightly oiled pan
  • sprinkle the zucchini fries with old bay
  • cook at 350 for about 20 minutes until the panko is crisp on the edges and a fork goes through the zucchini smoothly

Squeeze some lemon on the fries and serve!

Super food parfait

super food parfait: chia, quinoa, yogurt, cashew butter and more

My friend Shae just came back from a trip to Austin, Texas raving about a frozen yogurt hemp seed amazing parfait concoction. I knew as soon as she described it that I had to have one so I set out to try to make one myself. I didn’t want a sweet dessert but a super food parfait sounded like the perfect breakfast.

The great thing about a parfait is that you can literally put ANYTHING you want into it, whatever you have on hand! I happened to have a ton of  dried fruit, nuts and grains on hand since I just did our monthly shopping haul at Winco.  This was a little labor intensive this first time around since I made home-made coconut whipped cream, frozen banana puree and raw cashew butter from scratch but now that I have them on hand it will go a lot quicker tomorrow and the next day and the next. Yup, this is now my go to breakfast treat and I just can’t get enough.

Here are the ingredients I used but feel free to mix it up anyway you want with different fruits, nuts or grains! Let me know how you made your super food parfait! Next time I am going to try a green parfair by adding some spinach or kale to the banana puree and maybe some  mango when it’s in season!

*The night before or at least 4 hours prior to making this put your bananas and can of coconut milk in the freezer if you are using them

What I used

  • Yogurt- I used Nancy’s  vanilla yogurt
  • 1 can of coconut milk
  • home-made raw cashew butter , just throw some cashews and a tiny bit of water in a food processor, voila!
  • 1 cup quinoa
  • 4 tablespoons chia seeds
  • 1 cup of blueberries, fresh or frozen
  • 2 frozen bananas pureed
  • handful of almonds, crushed
  • a few tablespoons date pieces
  • a few tablespoons dried cranberries

How to make it

  • Cook quinoa with half the can of coconut milk plus 1 cup water and a few tablespoon sweetener of choice, I used honey.
  • when done add chia seeds to quinoa and let cool
  • In an electric mixer ofr with a hand blender whip the rest of the coconut milk with a bit of tapioca powder and honey
  • put it in the freezer until your parfait is complete
  • in a bowl or glass layer the quinoa, yogurt, berries, banana puree, cashew butter and dried fruit
  • top with coconut  whipped cream and crushed almonds
  • Enjoy!

Let’s talk about snacks, baby! A Newman’s own organics review

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When I am juggling cleaning, breastfeeding,  and blogging I don’t always have time to whip up a meal for the kiddo so having  healthy  organic snacks on hand is vital.  There are a lot of companies out there and it can be hard to figure out which ones are really good and which ones are secretly owned by companies who  kind of suck.

Newman’s own organics won me over when I started snacking on their Newman O’s. I had a craving for Oreos but didn’t want the gross ingredients.I had  a coupon for  any Newman’s own organic company so I decided to try them out, they were so delicious and the ingredients were all things I have in my kitchen. After that I was hooked and I started making Newman O’s and pretzels my go to snacks.

The great thing about Newman’s own organics is that they are completely transparent about everything that goes into their products. On their website you will find a FAQ’s page where every single ingredient is broken down for you and every question you might have about their products is answered down to how each ingredient is processed.

The best thing about Newman;s own organics is that a proceed of the sales go to  the Newman’s Own Foundation which was founded by Paul NewmanNewman’s Own Foundation has given more than  $370 million to organizations helping those in need around the world. Great food and a great cause? It doesn’t get better than that

Newman’s own organics recently sent me a box of products to try out and although I was not obligated to write a review  but after sampling them all I have zero complaints.  Here  is a review of my top 3  favorites:

Organic microwave popcorn:

Although I don’t usually eat microwaved popcorn I was just gifted a free microwave from a friend and was excited to try organic popcorn. It was wonderful and light and not greasy at all best of all the buttery flavor was not overwhelming.

Peppermints:

I think these are my favorites! I  have been trying to find mints that weren’t 100 different chemical ingredients and these are it! There are 3 ingredients to these mints- organic sugar, organic corn syrup solids and peppermint…that’s it! They were fresh and delicious and melted in my mouth.

Licorice:

Who ever invented these is a genius! I used to love  the name brand strawberry licorice  but when I cut out processed foods from my diet I had to say goodbye to those. These are not only better but they come in fun flavors, like pomegranate strawberry, tangerine, sour apple,  mango, cherry and black licorice. Best of all they are made with REAL fruit!

 

Get coupons here

Turkey chili & gruyere biscuits

turkey chili and gruyere biscuits recipe

It is grocery day here which means we are eating all our leftovers and cleaning out the fridge  so I thought I  would share one of my favorite winter recipes with you. This is a recipe for those  winter days when all you want to do is cuddle under a blanket.  This is a crock pot meal that you can throw together quickly so that you can get back under the covers.  The chili is healthy and packed full of nutrients and the biscuits are flaky and cheesy and delicious, perfect food to warm you up.

My family loves this recipe so much that I made it a few times a month and there are never leftovers. This is pretty much a fool-proof recipe so even if you aren’t too comfortable in the kitchen I guarantee this will come out delicious!

This recipe was featured on Winco’s website HERE

Chili Ingredients:

  • 2 cups ground turkey
  • 1 can of organic black beans
  • 3/4 cup quinoa ( I used red quinoa)
  • 1 can organic crushed tomatoes
  • 2 small bulbs of garlic roasted in the oven (trust me, the mess is worth the flavor)
  • 1 carrot –
  • 1 onion
  • spiced: cumin, chili powder, sea salt, cracked pepper  (I don’t measure these I just add until it tastes awesome)

Biscuit ingredients:

  • 2 cups flour ( I used white but feel free to use a wheat/white combo) 
  • 4 teaspoons baking powder
  • pinch of salt
  • 1/2 cup butter or shortening ( I used smart balance)
  • 2/3 c milk
  • 1/2 grated cheese-any kind will do!  I used Wasatch mountain Gruyere I had leftover from an apple Gruyere pie but  next I want to try  beehive cheese‘s  seahive cheese!

Chili directions:

  • put bulbs of garlic in the oven  at 350 until tender, about 10 minutes. I wrap them in foil with oil)
  • Brown the chili in a pan  with a few tablespoons of olive oil
  • Add onions and cook  until the onions are translucent
  • Transfer to a crock pot, juices and all and turn to high (if cooking on the stove use a small pot on med heat)
  • Dice carrots and add to crock
  • Add can of tomatoes, black beans, quinoa and spices to taste
  • Add roasted garlic
  • Let cook until carrots are tender and quinoa is done. You can tell when quinoa is done because i t will look like it sprouted.
  • While your chili is cooking , whip up some biscuits!

Biscuit directions:

  • Add dry ingredients and mix
  • Add grated cheese
  • Add butter or shortening and blend together with a pastry knife or fork until it is coarse
  • Add the milk and mix until blended
  • Knead on a floured surface around 15 times
  • roll out with a roller and use a cookie cutter to cut shapes (circle or heart), the extra dough a i just rolled by hand and threw in the oven with it.
  • you can grate extra cheese on top for an added crunch
  • cook at 350 for 10 minutes or until lightly browned on top.

Salad rolls & healthy peanut butter sauce

salad rolls and peanut butter sauce

Lunches in our house are usually peanut butter and honey sandwiches for the kiddo and salad for mama  but yesterday we were craving something a bit different. Usually I let my daughter make her own lunch  so I wanted something fun for her to be able to create. Spring rolls are not only easy and quick for moms to make but fun for kids too.

I really loved the acai berry raw nut butter added to the sauce, it made it a tad  sweeter and added a ton of antioxidants. At only $1.50 a pack it really is a great way to boot the nutritional content of your meal.

These salad spring rolls can be made with whatever veggies you have in the fridge, even leftover grains!  They are easy to carry and pack and would be perfect for picnics and trips to the park.  My daughter was really excited to eat these and barely noticed she ate a ton of veggies while doing so.  Letting kids create their own meals is great for their self esteem and is a fun way to teach them about food and nutrition.

Let me know if you try it, i’d love to see your results!

What you need

  • spring roll rice paper
  • veggies of choice, I used red leaf lettuce,, carrots, cucumber, tomato, green onion and pear
  • herbs of choice, I used basil but mint would be dreamy
  • 4 tbsp peanut butter
  • 2 tbsp all natural hoison sauce like this-http://www.honestfoods.com/hoisin.html
  • 2 tbsp coconut oil
  • 2 tbsp honey
  • artisana raw nut butter in acai berry, optional but its cheap so try it, there are many flavors to play with!

How to make it

Rolls

  • Use a vegetable peeler and slice your veggies into thin strips
  • fill a large bowl with warm water
  • dip your rice paper in the water gently until the rice paper is soft
  • lay on a plate and place veggies and lettuce and herbs on center of rice paper
  • fold like a burrito tucking the end under all the veggies tightly and the rolling

Sauce

  • in a bowl put  peanut butter and  coconut oil, heat in microwave or stove top (in pot) until coconut oil is melted
  • mix peanut butter and il until blended
  • add honey, hoisin sauce and  artisana raw acai butter and mix until well blended
  • add more hoisin sauce if it is too thick
  • enjoy!

**full disclosure: I was given a sample of a product used in this recipe. I was in no way obligated to use the product or review it. I only use products I love, trust  and have tested.

Ginger corn cakes & coconut syrup

Ginger corn cakes & coconut syrup

I love coconut, not  just for its flavor but for its amazing healing properties. It is cold and flu season and with everyone just getting over being sick I have been trying to add coconut oil to all of our foods to help boost our immune system.

Sunday morning I was craving a warm , sweet and filling breakfast but when I opened the cabinets I realized I forgot to buy whole wheat flour at the grocery store so pancakes and waffles were out of the question. We did however have some cornmeal and coconut milk  and I decided to experiment a bit and see what happens.

These corn cakes were a hit with my family and after eating breakfast everyone was energized and ready to get some projects we have been putting off done. Perhaps the coconut oil and milk gave us an energy boost or perhaps it was just having a belly full of good food.Either way these corn cakes are a much healthier alternative to pancakes drowned in syrup and are a nice fresh and exotic twist to an ordinary breakfast.  Enjoy!

What you need:

How to make it:

  • In a bowl mix corn meal and 1.5 tablespoons of  grated fresh ginger
  • add 2 table spoons melted coconut oil, 2 eggs and 1/3 of the can of coconut milk.
  • Mix together and if your mixture is too dry add a bit of water, I added around 2 tablespoons water
  • Mixture should be  moist but  thick enough to grab and form into balls
  • Heat  about 4 tablespoons of coconut oil on stove, MED heat
  • Form balls of corn meal mixture, a bit bigger than a golf ball, and flatten into patties
  • place in pan and fry until golden brown on both sides
  • Place in a warm oven to keep crisp and warm until your syrup is done

For syrup:

  • In a sauce pan add the rest of the coconut milk and the coconut cream and heat on MED heat
  • In a small bowl put 2 tbsp of tapioca powder and add 4 tablespoons of coconut milk
  • stir to dissolve then add it to the pot
  • add sweetener
  • let simmer until a little thicker, It will still be runny but it will be creamy

Top corn cakes with coconut syrup and cilantro, yum!

**full disclosure: I was given a sample of a product used in this recipe. I was in no way obligated to use the product or review it. I only use products I love, trust  and have tested.

 

Printer friendly version HERE: http://www.edwardandsonsrecipes.org/?p=4516

Beehive & beet quiche

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My favorite part of cooking and sharing recipes is using local ingredients and knowing my yummy dish is supporting a local family. Beehive cheese is hands down one of my favorite local businesses to support, their cheeses are incredible and they have won several international awards.  One of my favorite flavors is the apple walnut smoked cheese, it is perfect for any savory dish and my favorite dish to put it in is quiche.

Once upon a time I thought quiches were  processed cheese filled , greasy pies you devoured at family reunions and potlucks and then one day someone made me a fresh herb quiche. Mind…blown. I have no idea why I ever bothered to look up quiche recipes or try to make  a healthier version sooner. lesson learned, don’t judge food by a potluck.

Thankfully the past 6 years I have been in quiche heaven and I now eat quiche at least every couple of weeks. My favorite quiches are the simplest ones and this one was a hit with the kiddo. The girl child LOVES beets, not because of their  awesome flavor but solely because they turn her food hot pink.

This quiche is super easy to make and has very few ingredients so it is perfect for those lazy  late mornings when all you want to do is throw a few ingredients together and be done. I let my daughter help me make the crust in this one since  the baby decided she must be held in the sling, I think it turned out lovely considering a 5-year-old made it!

What you need:

  • 5 eggs, I used the beautiful eggs from my friends hens in the photo above
  • 4 tablespoons half & half
  • 2 tablespoons yogurt, I used nancy’s organic
  • 1 beet sliced thin
  • 1/4 C grated and some chunks of beehive apple walnut cheese or any cheese you prefer but this smokey flavor is really amazing.
  • 1.5 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 C + 1 tablespoon butter or all natural margarine, I used Smart balance
  • 3-4 tablespoons cold water
  • salt and pepper to taste

How to make it

  • Preheat oven to 275
  • Saute beet slices until a bit sift
  • Mix flour with a pinch of salt
  • Add smart balance and blend with your hands until crumbly
  • Add a little bit of water at a time until you can form the dough into a ball
  • Roll out and place crust in a pie dish
  • Fold edges over and trim off excess dough and set aside
  • In a bowl whisk together eggs, half & half and yogurt until nice and fluffy
  • Add grated cheese and gently mix
  • Gently pour into pie dish with crust
  • Add cheese chunks
  • Place beet slices on top
  • Cook for 20 minutes until top is firm and cheese bubbles a little

 

Quick and easy creamy potato soup

soup.jpgI had  all four of my wisdom teeth removed yesterday and with a swollen face and lots of after surgery pain I needed something easy to eat. I probably should have gone grocery shopping before hand but since I was a bit unprepared all I had in my house was a whole lot of yogurt and 1 carton of ice cream my husband ran out and purchased for me. When take out miso soup just didn’t cut it  and my husband was out running errands, I had to get out of bed and find something to make quickly.

This recipe turned out amazing and I ended up eating 3 bowls and feeling so much better. A little but of yummy food can really change how you feel in an instant. If you are sick, just got your wisdom teeth out or just need a  quick and easy soup to make then try this out.

Now I am heading back to bed with a full belly and some ice packs.

What you need

  • 4 red potatoes, unpeeled**
  • 1 whole yellow onion
  • half a head of  cauliflower
  • 3 cups of chicken broth
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 4 table spoons sour cream
  • 4 cloves of raw garlic
  • salt to taste

How to make it

  • In a pot add chopped potatoes, cauliflower onion,butter and chicken broth and boil until potatoes are soft
  • add veggies and broth to a blender, add  tad extra water or broth if needed
  • add sour cream, raw garlic and some sea salt
  • blend!

All done! I like to top mine with cold sour cream, I just love Nancy’s sour cream so much.

**why unpeeled potatoes? When compared ounce for ounce, potato skin has more nutrients that the rest of the potato. Potato skin contains B vitamins, vitamin C, iron, calcium, potassium and other nutrients. Potato skin also provides lots of fiber, about 2 grams per ounce.

PS: I love my new Grandway potholders! Check them out and expect giveaways soon! http://www.shopgrandway.com/