Seedy Crackers


Crunch! Everybody loves a good crunchy nibbly. It seems so satisfying and if it’s healthy, it’s all the better. Ever since I can remember I have loved crunchy things~ the toasted crusty bits of any kind of food like celery, only the outside crusty bits of that very rare croissant,  nuts of all kinds…you name it, if it’s crunchy I am drawn to it.  So, instead of avoiding crackers (because I don’t usually eat grains), I can now indulge with these little crunchy bites. 

 I have a hard time keeping these crackers stocked in our house because they are so popular. They take just a few minutes to put together and bake at a lower temperature for nearly an hour.  Make sure to use organic seeds and psyllium husks, when possible, which will make this way better for you. 

The beauty of making your own crackers is that you can cut them the sizes you want to tailor them to your needs. I often cut them smaller so they last longer around here.

 It is a great snack to eat alone or pare with almond butter, cheese, nut cheese, smashed Avo or use on a cheese meat veggie board. 




Now bake for 25-30 minutes. Remove and cut into desired sizes. 


Pop back into the oven for 20 minutes. Now flip the crackers over with the baking paper stuck to them and peel off the paper. 



Bake about 5-8 minutes more or until crunchy. I break them apart for more even cooking. Sometimes I just turn off the oven to cool, leaving the crackers to cool and crisp in the oven. 

Seedy Crackers 

1 cup purified water

1 Tbl. Psyllium Husks, slightly mounded

3/4 cup Sunflower Seeds

1/3 cup white or black Sesame Seeds (I used organic black sesame seeds)

3 Tbl. Flax Seeds 

1/2 tsp. Pink Himalayan Salt (plus extra to sprinkle on the top)

Preheat oven to 160C/325F

1.  In a mixing bowl or large glass Pyrex measure, add all the ingredients. Stir and let sit for about 15 minutes until the mixture is well thickened. 

2.  Lay a piece of baking paper on the length of  your cookie sheet. Place the seed mixture on the center of the baking paper and spread it slightly with a spatula or back of a spoon into a rectangle. Top with another piece of baking paper. 

3. Using a rolling pin, roll out the seed cracker mix evenly to the edges of the baking paper. 

4.  Starting at one end, carefully peel back the top parchment baking paper to remove it. 

5.  Sprinkle with a little more salt over the top and then pop it into a 160C/325F oven. 

6.  Bake 25-30 minutes till firm,  but not too crunchy. Remove from oven and cut into desired size & shape using a pizza cutter or knife. Return to oven and bake an another 20 mins. 

7.  Remove from oven and flip the baking paper over with the crackers stuck on it. Gently peel the paper off.  Check to test doneness. If not crunchy return to the oven an additional 5 mins. Cool and store in an airtight plastic bag or container.

Note: I often lower the temperature  of the oven to preserve the integrity of the seeds. If you choose to do that you will just need to bake them longer. The healthiest way to make these would be to use a dehydrator which would keep them raw, but seeing as I do not own one of these I try to bake them at as low of a temp as possible. 


Warmly Yours, Jeanenne  

Foodie Mama

Greek Vegetable Bake


I really, really enjoy vegetables, can you tell? Making a nutrient dense meal is important for me to eat, as well as to serve to others. This is an aspect of my passion for food… food that not only fills us, but truly nourishes our bodies.  This Veggie Bake is easy to fix and can be served as a main dish or a side dish. We usually eat this as our main meal since there is  protein in the halloumi cheese.  I happened to have one purple carrot that I added in, but it would have been better to cut it up so it would have cooked faster. One fact about carrots is that they are actually better for you cooked! You absorb more of the nutrients and the beta carotene when carrots are cooked. 

In this recipe you basically mix it all together and pop it into the oven to roast. Super easy and delicious. 



Greek Vegetable Bake 

  • 400 g halloumi cheese, sliced 
  • 3-4 cloves garlic minced 
  • 1 red onion, halved & sliced
  • 1 red pepper, roughly chopped
  • 1 yellow pepper, roughly chop
  • 200 g zucchini, sliced
  • 1 pack cherry tomatoes
  • 500 g (1 lb) pumpkin, cut in chunks 
  • 2 tsp. smoked paprika
  • 2 tsp. ground cumin
  • 2 Tbl dried oreganum or 5 Tbl fresh oreganum 
  • Pink salt 
  • Pepper, freshly ground 
  • Coconut oil
  1. Preheat oven to 180C/350F
  2. Line a roasting pan or 13 by 9 glass dish with baking paper or oil the glass dish. 
  3. Mix dried herbs and spices together in a small bowl. 
  4. Place vegetables and halloumi in the prepared pan and toss with coconut oil to lightly coat. 
  5. Sprinkle veg mixture with spice mix and minced garlic, stirring to coat. Season with salt and pepper. 
  6. Bake 20-30 minutes until veg is tender and halloumi is golden. 

Note: 

-If halloumi is not available you may substitute with feta cheese, sliced. 

-Experiment with different vegetables to your liking, like eggplant, cut carrots or cauliflower. I used 1 purple carrot in this recipe. 

-Optional: If not eating Paleo, you may want to add 1/2 to 1 can of rinsed and drained chickpeas to vegetable mixture before you add seasoning. 

Have a fabulous day! 

Warmly yours, Jeanenne

Foodie Mama 

I Love Scones! 

 

Anyone that knows me knows how much I LOVE scones. It’s kind of like my signature thing to make…and eat.  There’s this place in my heart that just loves England/Great Britain and the whole tea & scone culture from there. That’s how I’ve come to adore scones and tea…more on the tea part later.  My grandkids know that I am always up for making a mess…uh, I mean scones with them:)  In fact, that’s always on their list to do when they come over.

Now mind you, not any scone will do. It needs to be crisp on the outside, tender and flaky on the inside. Oh man, I am drooling just thinking about biting into one with butter or whipped cream slathered on each bite. Mmm. My husband took me away for our anniversary last weekend and the place we stayed had the most divine scones ever! I indulged in one both mornings, eating it painfully slow to make the goodness last. With us eating mostly grain-free, this has kind of curbed my traditional scone making habit. I made these when my niece, Sophia came to South Africa a couple of weeks ago. Now days I usually make the  grain-free versions,  but the real thing is my absolute favorite. In this recipe you will see the flours that I use.  Traditionally, white flour is used and works perfectly in this recipe, but I prefer to use some healthier alternatives when using grains… just to up the health value a bit.  You will notice that these are darker and they are a little heavier than the white flour version.  Be looking for the grain-free scones coming soon.

Typically, scones are served with Devonshire cream, whipped cream, butter and/or preserves. I kind of lean towards the salty side so I love them with butter and Devonshire cream.  Terry likes jam and cream on each bite like a true British chap. Is your mouth watering yet?

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Traditional Scones

3 cups white flour (I use: 1c spelt flour, 1c rolled oats, 1/2 c buckwheat, 1/2 c white flour)

3 tsp. baking powder (non-aluminum)

3/4 tsp. baking soda

3/4 tsp. pink salt

1 tsp. cinnamon

2 slightly mounded Tbl. sugar or xylitol sweetner

6-8 Tbl /100-115 g cold butter (it’s up to you)

3/4 cup milk- if using only white flour then you may need a bit more)

optional: 1/4 c mini chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 200C/400F.  In a bowl or food processor combine all of the dry ingredients except the chocolate chips,  If you are using the oats then you will need a food processor to process them into a flour.  Bowl method: Mix all the dry ingredients together in a medium sized bowl.  Cut in cold butter with a pastry blender or you can rub it in using your fingers until coarse crumbs.  Food Processor method: put all the dry ingredients into the processor, except chocolate chips.  Process until well combined and the oats, if using,  are now a flour.  Add chunks of cold butter.  Process again until mixture is coarse crumbs.  At this point both methods are the same.  Put the crumbly mixture into a medium sized bowl if it has been in the food processor. Add chocolate chips, if using.  Make a well in the center of mixture and add the milk all at once.  Fold in the mixture with the milk, being careful not to over-mix the batter.  This is the secret of flaky, tender scones.   If you have chosen to do the mixed flour combinations then the mixture will be more dry.  It just needs to be wet enough to hold together. Pour the mixture out onto a cookie sheet or pizza pan.  Gather it into a inch thick flat round disk in the center of your pan. This can take some pressing because it is a more dry dough.  Take a long knife and cut the flat circle of dough into fourths. Next cut each quarter into 3 wedges to equal a total of 12 wedge-shaped scones.  Carefully, separate each wedge using a floured knife and a small spatula so that the scones are not touching each other. Keep dipping your knife in flour between cuts to separate the scones.  Brush each scone with milk using a pastry brush.  Bake for 12-15 minutes or until nicely browned.  Remove from oven and use a spatula to carefully slide under each scone in case they stuck a bit from the milk that dripped when you brushed them before baking.

Enjoy with butter, whipped cream, jam, Devonshire cream and of course tea!

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I know that this pan is old and rustic,  but it is my traditional, well-used scone tray along with my grandmother’s teapot.

I hope you fall in love with this English tradition like I have.  In our home it has always been a time to gather our family or friends together, have scones and tea, but most of all to enjoy time with each other.

Warmly, Jeanenne

Foodie Mama

Chocolate Protein Balls


Chocolate Protein Balls are quick to make and a yummy afternoon snack  or after dinner treat. I first made something like this when my friend, Gail sent a package to me here in South Africa several years ago. I was so excited to receive a package from home that I didn’t really care what was in it! Upon opening it, I discovered a recipe and all that  I needed to make Nut & Date Protein balls. I was delighted! She really sent me such a thoughtful gift. Thank you Gail!  After making these a few times,  I decided to develop my own recipe that was lower in carbs and higher in healthy fats. I must say these little treats can be quite addicting.  Yummers!




Chocolate Protein Balls

1/2 cup Walnuts

1/4 cup Sunflower seeds, raw

2 Tbl. Vanilla protein powder, slightly mounded

3 Tbl. raw Cacao or cocoa powder

2 Dates pitted, fresh or dried

1 1/2 Tbl. Coconut oil

3-4 tsp water

Flaked coconut to roll balls in

Place walnuts, Sunflower seeds, protein powder and cacao powder in a small food processor or power blender like a vita mix. Process until crumbly. Add dates, cut in fourths, and coconut oil. Process again to breakup and incorporate oil and dates. Next,  add water starting with 2 tsp and blending. Check mixture to see if it will hold together by smashing tablespoon amount into a ball with your hands. If it still seems too dry add another tsp of water. Roll into 12-14 balls. Then, if desired, roll balls in unsweetened coconut flakes pressing to adhere. Place in a covered container and refrigerate till firm. Store in fridge.

Tip: I’ve used AIM Vanilla Pea Protein powder and Genuine Health Fermented Vegan Protein in vanilla. Another good option is Wazoogles Vanilla Sky Superfoods Protein Shake or Arbonne Protein Shake in vanilla. 

I like mine without coconut, but My Man likes it with the coconut. You could also coat them with crushed nuts.

Happy Snacking!

Warmly,

Jeanenne ~Foodie Mama

Chocolate Banana Pudding


This Chocolate Banana Pudding can fake out even the most avid sweet eater into eating a healthy dessert.  My friend Dan is a big, pretty imposing, Aussie-Figian guy that has a heart as big as the whole of Australia. Just to give you a better picture of him, many people mistake him for being a popular rugby player because of his build.  Dan knows that what I serve him is not always as it appears…which I think, scares this big guy just a bit.  His typical words to me when he eats at my house are, “so Jeanenne, what are we looking at here?”  I chuckle and refuse to tell him until he has at least tried it and sometimes I never tell him.  Dan liked this among other dishes I tried on him.  This dessert is rich tasting and satisfying.  My husband has a  giant sweet tooth and this is his go-to healthy treat that he regularly eats.



Chocolate Banana Pudding

2 large avocados or 3 small

1 medium banana, fairly ripened

4 Tbl. raw cacao or cocoa powder

1 Tbl. raw honey or maple syrup (add more if you like it sweeter)

1 tsp. vanilla extract

1/4 tsp. cinnamon

1 can coconut milk refrigerated over night

1/4 tsp. vanilla extract

Place peeled avocados in a food processor and blend to smooth.  Add banana and process till smooth again.  Next add cacao or cocoa powder, honey, vanilla extract and cinnamon.   Process till smooth and glossy. Taste and adjust sweetness if needed.  Divide into individual dessert cups.

To make the coconut whip cream: carefully scoop out some of the coconut cream from the top of the refrigerated can of coconut milk or coconut cream.  Place it in a small bowl along with 1/4 tsp. vanilla extract and whip with a whisk till it is fluffy.  You may want to sweeten it, but we like ours just as it is.  Top each chocolate pudding with the coconut whip and a sprinkle of cinnamon. They will last in the fridge about 4 days.


I hope you enjoy this guilt-free treat!

Warmly,

Foodie Mama