Chocolate, coffee crunch bars

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When you need chocolate you NEED chocolate so it’s always a good idea to store some for those days when the craving hits hard. This is one of those recipes born out of desperation, during a particularly fierce chocolate craving I gathered up some baking supplies and whipped this up. To my surprise ( and relief) these bars came out amazing and are now my new favorite treat.

This recipe makes quite a lot especially if you cut them into  2 inch squares. Store them in a bag in the freezer for emergencies  but remember to hide them behind the veggies so no one else eats them.
What you need

  • 1 c dark chocolate chips ( Or carob to make this vegan!) plus a handful for good luck
  • 1/2 c coconut oil
  • 6 cups rice krispies cereal, you can get it in bulk at Winco for so cheap!
  • 1 heaping tablespoon of fine ground coffee, espresso grind is best
  • coarse sea salt

How to make it

  • Melt chocolate and coconut oil together
  • in a big bowl mix together  rice krispies , ground coffee and melted chocolate mix until mostly coated
  • throw in your handful of chocolate chips for good luck
  • press into a baking dish lines with wax paper.  I used a deep baking pan for bars but you can do a baking dish for thicker slices.
  • Using a sheet of wax paper, press your bars into the dish gently to help it all stay together
  • sprinkle with a pinch of sea salt
  • put into the freezer for half hour to an hour until hardened
  • cut into pieces and devour!
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Raw fruit & nut bar

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I have been craving  a raw  bar I had many moons ago but I couldn’t remember the name of the bar or what was in it, all I remembered was that it was delicious and I wanted one right now. I just did my monthly winco bulk bin haul so I set out to try to recreate the flavor I was craving.

I may not have perfectly recreated the delicious treat I remembered but I think this might be even better. packed full of yummy seeds, nuts, fruits and even spirulina these raw bars are incredibly good for you.  They were a hit with the family especially after I cut some into heart shapes for the little one.

Next time  I think I am going to make a cashew, raw honey and  strawberry raw bar, yum! Be sure to store these in the fridge to keep them fresh and delicious!

What you need

  • 1 c almonds
  • 1 c dried cherries
  • 1/2 c dried cranberries
  • 1/2 c dates
  • 1 tbsp spirulina
  • 1/2 c hemp seeds
  • 1/4 c flax seeds
  • 2 tbsp raw honey
  • 4 tbsp coconut oil

How to make it

  • Add almonds into the blender or food processor and pulse until it is an almond meal
  • add dates, cherries and cranberries ( leave a handful aside) and pulse until they are chopped
  • add honey, oil and spirulina and blend until a paste
  • add more dates or coconut oil until the consistency is a thick stuff paste
  • put into a bowl and mix in flax and hemp seeds. Chop up remaining fruit and add in.
  • line a baking sheet with wax paper and press onto the pan
  • sprinkle some fruit and hemp seed on top and press in
  • cover top with wax paper and put in the fridge for at least an hour
  • cut into squares and wrap with plastic wrap and store in the fridge.

Southwestern quinoa chili with cheesy polenta

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Yesterday got a gloomy start with high winds and dark skies, so of course I woke up with a stuffy nose. On days when I just want to sip tea and stay in my robe my family still needs to eat and as much as I would love to tell the kiddos to fend for themselves I’d rather not have to deal with the disaster in the kitchen that would follow. The crock pot is a magical invention that allows moms with the sniffles to make amazing meals while laying on the couch watching teen mom, don’t judge me I know you’ve watched it too.

I wanted to make something warm and filling and also something with a lot of leftovers just in case the sniffles turned into the plague. Chili is always a hit with the whole family and there are literally dozens of ways to make it. I have made beet chili, simple turkey chili and now my favorite- southwestern quinoa chili. This chili is not only healthy its super filling and is even better the next day. Try it in your eggs for breakfast, yum!

I hope you enjoy this yummy quinoa chili with cheesy polenta, top with avocado , cilantro and sour cream if you like and freeze any extra for a quick rainy day meal!

What you need

  • 1 lb ground turkey, swap for firm tofu to make it vegan!
  • 2 cans of organic black beans
  • 1.5 c corn, either fresh off the cob or frozen
  • 1/2 c quinoa
  • 1/2 c amaranth
  • 5 cloves of garlic
  • 2 yellow onions
  • 1/4 c chili powder
  • 4 tbsp cumin
  • 1 tsp cayenne
  • 3 8oz cans of organic tomato sauce, no herbs or spices added
  • 1 C polenta
  • 1/2 c mozzarella shredded
  • salt to taste
  • cilantro, lime, avocado and sour cream to top, all optional

How to make it

  • In a pan brown turkey
  • add onions and cook just a little
  • add to crock pot on med/high (mine is from the 70’s and only has high and low settings, I put it on high)
  • add beans, garlic spices, tomato sauce, corn, quinoa and amaranth
  • cook for 4 hours
  • in a pan cook polenta (3 parts liquid to 1 part polenta) , add cheese and mix until melted, salt to taste.
  • Layer chili on top of polenta and add toppings.