Archives for January 2014

Peanut Butter & Football

There is this thing happening on Sunday.

I’m sure you’ve all heard of it.

It’s called Super Bowl.

Ya know, that one day per year where good looking guys in skin-tight polyester-type pants run around on green turf and drop kick one another while trying to catch a pigskin.

Yep, that’s American football for ya.

My Dallas Cowboys didn’t make it this year, but I’ll still be watching 🙂

Super Bowl is really about the food.

You know it is.

Especially snack-able foods.

You will find me at the dip and chip table or the dessert table.

That’s where I post up.

Let’s make some mini muffins.

Everyone loves a good mini muffin.

Especially one w/ peanut butter.

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You already know that peanut butter and I are b.f.f.’s.

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Uh, these are the death of me.

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They have a slightly crispy top w/ a gooey peanut butter center.

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These are the perfect snack food.

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They get even better when I top them with a peanut butter glaze.

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Did I mention these are flour-less, gluten-free, vegan, and refined sugar-free?

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Don’t tell you’re friends!

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Hmmmm…watcha think about that, Super Bowl?!

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😉

Double Peanut Butter Mini Muffins
Author: 
Recipe type: Muffins, Snack
Cuisine: American
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 24
 
Melt in your mouth loaded peanut butter muffins topped w/ a creamy peanut butter glaze. Gluten-free, flourless, refined sugar-free, vegan.
Ingredients
  • For the muffins:
  • 1 T. golden flaxseed meal + 3 T. water, mix and let sit 5 minutes until thick
  • ½ c. smooth peanut butter (don't use natural or homemade, recc JIF)
  • ½ c. unsweetened, apple butter (you could probably use apple sauce too)
  • 3 T. pure maple syrup
  • 1 T. pure Mexican vanilla extract
  • ¼ t. baking soda
  • For the peanut butter glaze:
  • ¼ c. smooth peanut butter
  • 2 T. pure maple syrup
  • 1 T. unsweetened, coconut milk (from a carton, not a can)
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Line a mini muffin pan w/ non-stick muffin liners.
  3. In a large mixing bowl, combine all of the muffin ingredients, mixing until smooth.
  4. Drop the batter by rounded tablespoons into each prepared muffin cup.
  5. Bake for 10-12 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into each muffin comes out clean.
  6. Let the muffins cool completely before turning them out of the silicone liners.
  7. For the glaze, whisk all of the ingredients together until smooth.
  8. Drizzle the glaze over each of the cooled muffins.
  9. Enjoy a couple w/ a large glass of milk.

MANGIA!!!

Birthday’s and Pancakes.

I love pancakes.

They are great on any day of the week.

Especially on birthdays.

You should treat your birthday like a national holiday.

It should feel like Christmas.

It should be a day where you sleep in until noon and have your significant other (or your mom 🙂 ) make you breakfast in bed.

Oh, and it better be pancakes.

Because pancakes and birthdays go together like peanut butter & jelly.

Well, at least in my family they do.

Today is my baby seester’s birthday.

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Well, she’s not really a baby anymore being that she is now 24 years young, but you get me.

For as long as I can remember, breakfast was the most important part of any birthday we celebrated in my immediate family.

It all began when my dad started making my seester and I pancakes for our birthday breakfast.

I remember that they were of the Krusteaz buttermilk variety.

But hey, it was the thought that counted.

Or ya know, they could have totally been from scratch and I could be underestimating my dad’s pancaking skills right now.

He has some serious pancake skills.

He is just a bad-ass cook in general.

He would serve us up a stack of pancakes so fluffy and piled high that I couldn’t see what was behind them on the kitchen table.

They were so delicious.

I drowned mine in butter and Aunt Jemima’s pancake syrup.

Because high fructose corn syrup was a staple back then. 😉

My seester and I were enamored by the fact that we could blow out a candle placed diligently in our stack of pancakes.

Who needs a birthday cake when you have birthday pancakes?

My seester’s favorite cake is strawberry cream cake.

So, I smash banged her birthday cake + pancakes into one.

How do you like them apples, eh?

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It all starts with those fluffy little vanilla pancakes up there.

But then comes this creamy, dreamy, strawberry sauce.

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Say what?

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Oh yes.

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I just put your pancakes on a whole notha’ level.

IMG_3897Mhhhhhm.

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Now that is what I am talking about.

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These are birthday pancakes at their best.

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Blow out your candles, sissy!

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Make a wish!

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Happy Birthday SEESTER!

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I LOVE YOU!

5.0 from 1 reviews
Vanilla Birthday Pancakes w/ Strawberry Sauce
Author: 
Recipe type: Breakfast, Brunch, Pancakes
Cuisine: American
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 1-2
 
Fluffy, vanilla pancakes topped w/ a creamy strawberry sauce. Gluten-free, paleo, nut-free, refined sugar-free.
Ingredients
  • For the pancakes:
  • ¼ c. + 1 t. coconut flour
  • ½ t. baking powder
  • 1 T. granulated stevia
  • ½ c. liquid egg whites
  • ½ c. light coconut milk
  • 1 t. pure Mexican vanilla extract
  • For the strawberry sauce:
  • ½ c. + 2 T. coconut cream, i.e. the cream at the top of the can of full-fat coconut milk, you can also buy cans of coconut cream
  • 5 strawberries, hulled, and sliced in half
  • 2 t. pure maple syrup
Instructions
  1. Heat a large non-stick skillet over medium heat and grease with cooking spray.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, combine the coconut flour, baking powder, and stevia.
  3. Stir in the egg whites, coconut milk, and vanilla until a even batter begins to form.
  4. Place the batter by two tablespoons full onto the skillet.
  5. Cook the pancake for 2-3 minutes on one side, then flip and cook for an additional 2-3 minutes or until lightly golden.
  6. Plate the pancakes and repeat with the remaining batter.
  7. For the sauce, place all of the ingredients into a small food processor and blend until smooth.
  8. Pour the sauce over the stack of pancakes and devour!
Notes
If using full-fat coconut milk, make sure that you chill the coconut milk in the can, upside down, overnight. That way, when you open the can, the coconut cream will be on top and be thick and creamy.

MANGIA!!!

Coffee and The Godfather.

I could watch a Godfather marathon on any given day.

Especially Sunday.

It’s like I’m watching a film about my extended Italian family, only without all of the guts and blood.

Well, at least not today.

We usually argue about things that are way less important.

Way, way, back in the day, my ancestors were a mafia crime family, the Matrangas.

We were even involved in the murder of a corrupt New Orleans policeman.

Yep, true mafia…Corleone style.

I’m pretty sure I’ve had a few friends who think my dad is more than a computer engineer, with many of them insinuating that he might be apart of the mafia.

Hah! He’s not. At least to my knowledge 😉

 It feels good to know a piece of my heritage.

If only I could be transplanted right into the heart of Italy and automatically know how to speak Italian.

At least I know how to make muffins.

Yesterday, Sunday…that was definitely a muffin day.

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I was thinking I needed some extra coffee yesterday.

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So I put it, along with some chocolate chips, into a muffin.

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Because you can’t go wrong w/ chocolate and coffee.

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Duh.

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These are a little piece of heaven.

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Plus, they are super fluffy.

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These are the perfect muffins to pair with coffee.

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Caffeine on caffeine?

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You can never go wrong.

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I topped them w/ a mixture of almond butter + coconut milk +maple syrup, stirred together in a drippy, ooey, gooey glaze.

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Mhhhhm.

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I don’t know if it can get any better than that.

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Have a muffin…its Monday.

Chocolate Coffee Banana Muffins
Author: 
Recipe type: Muffins
Cuisine: American
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 12
 
Slightly sweet banana muffins spiked w/ coffee and studded w/ dark chocolate chips. Gluten-free, paleo, refined sugar-free, nut-free.
Ingredients
  • 3 ripe bananas, mashed
  • ½ c. coconut sugar
  • ¼ c. extra-virgin olive oil
  • ¼ c. light roast coffee, brewed, and cooled
  • 1 c. liquid egg whites, or 4 large eggs, at room temperature
  • ½ c. coconut flour
  • ½ t. baking soda
  • ½ c. dark chocolate chips
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line a 12 cup muffin pan with paper liners and grease the liners w/ cooking spray.
  2. In a large bowl, combine the bananas, sugar, evoo, coffee and eggs until combined.
  3. Stir in the coconut flour & baking soda until a smooth batter forms.
  4. Fold in the chocolate chips.
  5. Drop two tablespoonsful of the batter into each muffin cup.
  6. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, or until the tops of the muffins are lightly golden and a toothpick inserted into each muffin comes out clean.
  7. Let cool slightly.
  8. Top w/ a mixture of almond butter, maple syrup, and coconut milk if desired.
  9. Devour.

MANGIA!!!

Carats and Matchmakers.

I’ve been watching a ton of Millionaire Matchmaker lately.

Please tell me you’ve seen this show.

That, and el Bachelore…aka Juan Pablo.

Can someone please nominate me for one of these shows?

Just bring me a good looking, entrepreneur, Mr. fix-it of a guy that comes in a package w/ a bow of top, cap-eesh?

I totally wish it was that easy.

I seriously cannot take another day of someone asking me if I am dating, in a committed relationship, married, or have three kids?

Seriously, I just landed my first corporate job this past Wednesday.

How in the world do I have kids already?

Next!

Please tell me you know a guy like the one above. One that’s not 20 years older than me.

Food is totally my boyfriend.

Today, it’s muffins.

You can always rely on muffins.

They are super fluffy, slightly sweet, and always there to listen to every problem you have.

Who needs a boyfriend?

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These muffins are of the banana carrot variety.

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Like I said, muffins…fluffy & slightly sweet.

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I topped mine w/ a little dollop of Greek yogurt.

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Because I do what I want.

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I’m a Greek yogurt kind of gal.

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Greek guys aren’t too bad either.

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It’s Friday, let’s go crazy! 🙂

Carrot Banana Mini Muffins
Author: 
Recipe type: Muffins, Snack
Cuisine: American
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 28
 
Fluffy, slightly sweet, mini muffins chock full of carrots and banana. Gluten-free, paleo, nut-free, & refined sugar-free.
Ingredients
  • ½ c. coconut flour
  • ½ c. granulated stevia
  • ½ t. ground cinnamon
  • ½ t. baking soda
  • 1 large, ripe banana, mashed
  • 2 T. unsweetened, all-natural apple butter or apple sauce
  • ¼ c. light coconut milk
  • ¼ c. extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 c. liquid egg whites or 4 large eggs
  • 1 c. pureed carrots
  • Greek yogurt, optional, for topping
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line a mini muffin pan w/ silicone muffin liners.
  2. In a large bowl, combine the coconut flour, stevia, cinnamon, and baking soda.
  3. Stir in the mashed banana, apple butter, coconut milk, evoo, and eggs until combined.
  4. Fold in the carrot puree.
  5. Drop the batter by tablespoon into each prepared muffin cup.
  6. Bake for 20-22 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into each muffin comes out clean.
  7. Let cool slightly, top w/ greek yogurt if you wish, and devour.

MANGIA!!!

BIRF-DAY CAKE!

My mom’s birthday is today!

She’s pretty much 20 years old.

Well, more like a 20 something year old in her 50’s.

I’m not joking…this woman can run circles around me.

Literally.

On 3-4 days of the week, we run about 3 miles together…this woman kicks my bootay.

Not like I’m trying to compete with her (I love a good, steady, pace), but seriously…no 50 something year old has about a 9 minute mile.

I’m back here at 10:20…maybe 😉

Oh, and then there are the people who always say “Oh, that’s you’re mom, I thought that was you’re sister.”

Seriously, people? You just keep giving her that age-defying ammunition she needs.

If she were my sister, our mother would be like 80 something…not happening.

Anyway, my mom is beautiful…not just on the outside, but on the inside.

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She knows best…and usually tells me that she does 😉

I have learned to value her advice over the course of my years on earth.

It’s worked out pretty well for me if I may say so myself.

Some things my mom has taught me…

in no particular order:

1). Love is selfless…my mom is the most selfless person you will ever meet. She is always doing for others, never doing for herself, and always thinking how she can make someone else’s day, month, or year better.

2). Never let anyone touch your eyebrows, this includes, waxing, threading, etc. I learned my lesson when I was younger, and it took me years to grow them out!

Thanks Mom!

3).  Anything can be fixed w/ a coat of paint and a hammer…she is the ultimate interior decorator and has pulled furniture out of dumpsters, off the side of the road, and made them look brand new. That’s creativity, people.

4). Love can hurt…but true love is willing to go to great lengths to survive.

5). True happiness is loving what you do. I have learned this over the past couple ever years, and this statement is truer than ever at this moment in my life. I have found that true happiness lies in my passions for life, not my career title. I’m working on this at the moment…updates soon 🙂

6). There is nothing that a good manicure and pedicure can’t fix.

7). There is nothing that a good bottle of wine can’t fix.

8). You can be furious at someone, yet if the phone rings, it takes you nothing to put a sweet tone of voice on and act like you just won the lottery. THAT IS WHAT I CALL SWAGGER.

9). The cake is always worth the extra calories. Okay, maybe she didn’t physically teach me this one…kind of learned this on my own…but damn, that woman can eat cake like no other.

That’s why I intend to make her gain some weight  jump for joy with this birthday cake.

Now, because my mom loves cake, one type of cake isn’t enough to satisfy her.

She loves them all: red velvet, italian cream, and carrot cake are a few of her faves.

I wanted to surprise her, so here goes nothing.

Y’all…this cake is ONE BOWL.

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There’s Mexican vanilla extract up in this here cake.

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Mexican vanilla is like no other vanilla…it’s pure…and it has a cinnamon like flavor to it.

Then, ya know, I put some cinnamon and vanilla bean up in the glaze.

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Now, what y’all know about that?

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This cake is AHMAAAAZING!

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It literally knocked my socks off.

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The edges are slightly crispy, and the center is super fluffly (super moist, even though I can’t stand that word).

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Oh, and the glaze just seeps right on through the cake like a river of heaven with each bite.

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The cake is purely paleo…the glaze…not so much…it’s okay, I won’t tell!

Are you sold yet?

HAPPY BIRTHDAY MOM! Here’s to another 50+ years of drinking wine and eating cake.

I LOVE YOU!

One Bowl Glazed Vanilla Cake
Author: 
Recipe type: Cake, Dessert
Cuisine: American
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 9
 
A fluffy, melt in your mouth cake infused with Mexican vanilla extract and topped w/ a vanilla bean glaze. Gluten-free, paleo, nut-free, refined sugar-free.
Ingredients
  • For the cake:
  • ½ c. coconut flour
  • 1½ c. organic sucanat
  • ½ t. salt
  • 1 t. baking powder
  • 2 large eggs
  • ½ c. extra-virgin olive oil
  • ½ c. light coconut milk
  • 2 T. pure honey
  • 1 t. pure Mexican vanilla extract
  • For the glaze:
  • 2 c. powdered sugar
  • 5 T. light coconut milk
  • ¼ t. ground cinnamon
  • seeds of 1 vanilla bean
Instructions
  1. For the cake, preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease an 8x8 in. cake pan w/ cooking spray, line the pan with parchment paper, and grease the parchment paper.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, combine the flour, sugar, salt, and baking powder.
  3. Stir in the eggs, evoo, milk, honey, and vanilla until a smooth, even batter forms.
  4. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 45 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean.
  5. Let the cake cool completely.
  6. For the glaze, whisk all of the ingredients together until smooth.
  7. Pour the glaze over the cooled cake and let harden.
  8. Cut into squares and serve.

MANGIA!!!