Chocolate zucchini cupcakes & chocolate bacon frosting

GEDSC DIGITAL CAMERAToday we got a taste of spring sunshine and I was really in the mood for a picnic. Sadly it was still too cold to actually sit outside so my daughters and I had an indoor tea party with all of their little Russian dolls and these yummy chocolate zucchini cupcakes.

The best part of zucchini cupcakes  ( besides being delicious) is of course getting a little extra veggies in the kiddos diet without a fuss. Luckily my kids love veggies but even they can be stubborn about eating sometimes.  These are lightly sweet and oh so yummy and the frosting has a hint of salty bacon in it making them a little extra special.

What you need

Cupcakes

  • 1 medium-large zucchini
  • 1/2 c coconut oil
  • 1/2 c honey
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 c cocoa powder
  • 1/2 tbsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 2 eggs
  • pinch of salt

Frosting

 

  • 4 tbsp coconut oil
  • 4 tbsp honey
  • 1 heaping tablespoon of bacon grease ( you can use chopped cooked bacon for ‘sprinkles’!)
  • 4 tablespoons cocoa powder
  • 1 tbsp corn starch
  • A few drops of water as needed

 

How to make it

Cupcakes

  • Preheat oven to 350
  • in one bowl mix flour, cocoa powder,  baking powder & soda and salt together and set aside
  • Grate zucchini finely
  • in a bowl mix zucchini, eggs and honey
  • Melt coconut oil
  • Add coconut oil to dry ingredients and mix well
  • add zucchini mixture to flour mixture and mix well
  • add batter to a greased muffin tin
  • reduce oven to 300 and bake for 15 minutes or until done

Frosting

 

  • In a kitchen aid or in a bowl with a mixer whisk together cocoa powder and corn starch until fully blended
  • add coconut oil and honey slowly and whisk in
  • whisk in bacon grease
  • add a few drops of water if needed until consistency is like frosting
  • Place in the fridge for at least 15 minutes
  • (coconut oil may clump together once cooled, just whisk again to blend or not if you don’t care )

 

 

 

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Pulled pork sammie & granny smith slaw

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Summer time is all about  messy foods and not caring about whether or not you are slathered in it because you are just going to jump through the sprinkler or cannonball  in the pool anyway.  One of my favorite messy summer foods is BBQ pulled pork sandwiches, the kind you kind of wish you wore an apron while eating,  finger licking good!

While shopping at Winco the other day I saw they had pork roast on sale  and when I picked it up my husband and I both gave each other a knowing look, BBQ pork time! While the pork slow cooked in the crock pot ( saving us from the horrible heat of the oven)  the kiddos and I walked over to our favorite bakery for some buns.  Topper bakery is about to celebrate 75 years here in our town and their buns are the best I have ever had, light and fluffy but it never falls apart. I don’t even try to make my own buns, I know they wont even compare.

Once the pork cooked I whipped up some home-made BBQ sauce ( next time I am adding blackberries!)  and slaw and we dove into our sammies face first. It was a delicious sticky mess and I ate so much I thought I might burst and by some miracle there was actually enough leftovers for my husband to pack for lunch the next day.

Although there are a lot of ingredients for these sammies I assure you it is all easy peasy and comes together quite quickly  so you wont have to wait forever to stuff your faces full of yum!

 

What you need

Pork

  • Pork roast, I used a 3 pounder
  • 2 cups of chicken broth
  • 2 tbsp oil
  • 2 tbsp salt

BBQ sauce

  • 1 8oz can of  organic tomato paste
  • 1/4 c molasses
  • 1/4 c honey
  • 1/4 c apple cider vinegar  ( I used braggs)
  • 2 tsp chili powder
  • 2 tsp black pepper
  • 2 cloves of garlic finely minced
  • 1/2 onion finely copped
  • 2 tsp salt

Slaw

  • 1/2 of a cabbage
  • 1 granny smith apple
  • 2 carrots
  • 2 tbsp aioli or all natural mayo
  • 1 tsp dijon mustard ( I used horseradish mustard for a kick!)
  • 1 tbsp sugar

How to make it

Pork

  • Place pork in a crock pot with chicken broth, oil and salt and cook overnight, at least 8 hours
  • during the last hour of cooking  drain liquids, saving 1/4 cup
  • add BBQ sauce and 1/4 c of liquids  and let the sauce cook into the meat

BBQ sauce

  • Place all ingredients in a saucepan and simmer for half hour
  • strain or puree to make smooth

Slaw

  • Chop cabbage and apples and shred carrots
  • mix in aioli or mayo,  mustard and sugar
  • refrigerate 1 hour before adding to sammies

Chia, yogurt & applesauce muffins

chia, yogurt & applesauce muffins

 

Look how cute these mini baking pans are!! I tried out these lovely little things from Welcome Home Brands and I just couldn’t get over how adorable they were. Welcome home makes all kinds of cute bake ware and there will be a review soon for sure.

I made these chia, yogurt and apple sauce  muffins for breakfast for home and for the hubby to take to work. I have so much yogurt right now that I have been trying to pt it in everything and what is better for breakfast than yogurt? These are super yummy and slightly sweet and are awesome with a scoop of yogurt and a bit of honey.

Speaking of honey do any of you watch Duck Dynasty? Can I just say that I love Miss Kay and I want to be her when I grow up? She is the sweetest and a woman who knows how to cook frog legs and makes jam with honey is a woman I want to be like.  So, I will leave you all with a  couple quotes from Miss Kay to get your day started right:

“Food is the language. I know how to speak it.” and  “Your not a proper woman unless you own a goat or two.”

I hope you enjoy this recipe!

What you need

  • 1 c Greek yogurt,I used Nancy’s greek honey yogurt
  • 4 tbsp chia seeds
  • 1/2 c apple sauce
  • 2 eggs
  • 3 c whole wheat flour
  • 2 tbsp coconut oil
  • 1/2 c unbleached sugar or honey
  • 1 tbsp real vanilla extract
  • 1 tbsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • a few tbsp raw sugar for top

How to make it

  • Mix chia seeds and yogurt and put in the fridge to sit for 3 hours, chia seeds will absorb moisture and puff up
  • in a bowl whisk yogurt, apple sauce, vanilla, eggs , sugar or honey and coconut oil together
  • in a separate bowl mix flour and baking powder and salt
  • fold in wet ingredients to dry
  • spoon into oiled muffin tin, half full
  • sprinkle top with raw sugar
  • bake at 350 for 20 minutes

 

Fig, raspberry & goat cheese pastry

fig, raspberry goat cheese pastry

I have been on a sweets kick, that and every time I try to photograph my savory dishes I can’t seem to get a good photo.  I don’t know why but when ever I try to photograph dinner it just does not look as pretty as it tastes. Perhaps it is the time of day and the light  or my family pacing behind me waiting  patiently to eat; What ever it is, it stinks and I wish I could have shown you all the salmon, goat cheese and chard tart I made for late lunch but I can’t.

At least I was able to snap a few photos of this pastry before it was devoured by the girl child and the mischievous dog! This pastry was a last-minute sweet tooth concoction and It was so yummy. This is a good quick sweet treat and would be so good with a scoop of yogurt for breakfast  or ice cream for dessert… or in bed  while watching reruns of  project runway in your jammies.

What you need

  • puff pastry or handmade if you are  champ try this recipe
  • 1/4 c  figs
  • 2 tbs raspberry jam
  • 2 tbsp honey
  • 1/2 c goat cheese
  • 2 tsp orange zest
  • 1 tbsp orange juice
  • 1 egg  white
  • a few tbsp of raw sugar or regular sugar

How to make it

  • thaw pastry dough or make your own like a boss…or someone without hungry kids
  • finely chop figs
  • mix goat cheese and honey together
  • add orange zest and juice
  • mix in jam and figs
  • cut pastry dough into  4 inch long rectangles
  • place a heaping spoonful of the mix into center of dough
  • fold over and press edges with a fork
  • brush egg whites onto top of pastry
  • sprinkle with sugar
  • bake at 300 for about 10-12 minutes

Review & giveaway: Really raw honey

raw honey

I have a bee obsession, I always have. Bees are amazing creatures and without them we wouldn’t have  most of our favorite foods..not naturally anyway. Bees are a vital part of our ecosystem and mass-produced honey is putting them in danger.

Local US companies like Really Raw Honey are changing the way people see honey and advocating environmentally sound beekeeping. Not only is their honey pure, unprocessed deliciousness but it has all the good stuff most mass-produced honey manufacturers take out like bee pollen, honeycomb and propolis.

Really raw honey is all natural and harvested by a collective of bee keepers committed to saving the bees. When I opened my jar it was like smelling pure concentrated spring. Raw honey is super creamy and is easily spreadable for sandwiches but I love to add it to smoothies and protein bars, check out one of my recipes HERE.

The flavor of this honey is super rich unlike that of processed honey and you can really taste the wildflowers. IF you want to try Really raw then check out their online store HERE but even if you decide not to buy please try to remember to buy local honey to help save the bees.

Really Raw Honey was generous enough to offer one of you dear readers a jar of this amazing superfood for you to try. Win your jar by following these simple steps:

1- ‘like’ mamamousesays on facebook

2-Check out http://www.reallyrawhoney.com/ and comment with something you learned

Raw honey & peanut butter protein treat

honey peanut butter protein treats

As a nursing mama it is super important to have a quick and easy protein snack on hand. I spend a lot of time nursing and a most of that time is in a rocking chair far away from the kitchen.  I made this recipe to keep on the table next to me for when I inevitably become ravenously hungry and no one is around to fetch me a snack and I am just to tired to try myself.

Of course the kiddo, the dog and the husband saw my tasty treat and snagged a few and  it quickly became a house favorite. Packed full of protein and yummy raw honey sweetness,  it really does taste like candy but I assure you it is powerful protein magic.  These are quick to make so if you are juggling kids and dishes and giant dogs  you can whip these up in no time, hand over a few to everyone and  get a few moments of peace.

They are great for hikes or post workout , snacking while nursing  or silencing the brood.  They will stay  fresh in the fridge for weeks (or freezer for a cold snack)  so go ahead and double or triple the recipe!

What you need

How to make it

  • mix all ingredients together except cocoa powder
  • roll into balls
  •  put into the freezer for half hour to firm
  • drop half of the balls ( or all if yo love chocolate!)  in a bowl of cocoa powder
  • try not to eat them all in 3 seconds, good luck

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

Chocolate hazelnut milk & banana ‘ice cream’

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It’s been warm and sunny lately and there is nothing better than sitting on the porch on a warm day eating ice cream. It’s been a long winter so as soon as the snow started to melt I threw some bananas in the freezer  for ice cream. The other day Pacific foods sent me some chocolate hazelnut milk to try, and after one blissful sip of the best chocolate milk I’ve ever tasted, I knew I needed to freeze some for ice cream before it was all devoured.

A few days later  I was wearing a sundress and  baking on the front lawn and after a few minutes of sweating my daughter and I gave each other a knowing look….ice cream. This recipe is super easy and came out so wonderful. It was quite warm so it kept melting but I put it in the freezer and a few hours later it was just like a store bought frozen treat.

The best part of this recipe is that your kids can eat it up  and not bounce off the walls, drive you bonkers and crash. It stays fresh in the freezer and after a couple of days was still scoopable  and creamy and did I mention delicious?

This hazelnut milk is the creamiest non dairy milk I have ever tasted and it was thick like real milk as well. I am usually a fan of hemp milk but I think I might have just been converted.  I am sure you can use any chocolate milk for this recipe but if you can I suggest giving hazelnut milk a try.

What you need

  • 1.5  cups frozen chocolate hazelnut milk 
  • 1/2 c cold chocolate hazelnut milk
  • 4 frozen bananas
  • 2 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/4 c honey

How to make it

  • The night before or at least 4 hours prior freeze your bananas and 1.5 c hazelnut milk in Ziploc bags
  • put everything in a blender
  • puree until smooth
  • serve as soft serve or put in freezer for a couple of hours for firm ice cream

Curry honey, chocolate & hazelnut baklava

curry honey hazelnut chocolate baklava

My absolute favorite chocolate bar of all time is definitely Theo’s coconut curry bar , it is sweet and spicy and creamy  and just perfect. I wanted to make baklava but I also wanted that sweet spicy combo and  suddenly it came to me…why don;t I just add curry and chocolate  to my baklava? After harassing all of my friends to see if this was a good idea or a horrifying idea I finally decided to make it.

I really wanted  to add coconut  to this but my daughter recently decided that coconut is gross and refuses to eat it, I suppose I could have added it anyway  so I could hoard all the treats to myself but  I decided that might be mean. Next time however I am adding coconut and little miss can just  start liking coconut like the rest of the universe or miss out on yum.

These came out so yummy which sadly meant that they were gone in 10 minutes. As I am writing this post I am desperately craving a bite and there isn’t anymore phyllo in the house…le sigh. These are wonderful with coconut bliss ice cream or coffee!

Makes a 9 x 9 pan of  9 pieces of baklava

What you need

  • 1 package of phyllo dough sheets or home-made if you are feeling awesome
  • 1 cup hazelnuts
  • about 1/4 c chocolate I used Newmans own organics dark chocolate bar
  • 1 c honey
  • 2 tbsp curry
  • 1/4 c melted coconut oil

How to make it

  • cut phyllo sheets to size of dish
  • grind hazelnuts in processor just a tad, don’t grind to powder
  • chop chocolate into pieces
  • layer 8 slices of phyllo, brushing coconut oil between each slice
  • sprinkle chocolate & hazelnut on phyllo
  • layer 8 sliced, repeat until the pan is filled
  • mix honey & curry
  • cut baklava into squares and pour half the honey over it
  • bake at 300 until brown on top
  • pour rest of honey over top

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!