7.01.2015

Blueberry Banana Greek Yogurt Muffins with Coconut Sugar


Blueberry Banana Greek Yogurt Muffins- yields 12 muffins




Ingredients:

2 ripe bananas- mashed
1 cup coconut sugar
1 egg
1/3 cup applesauce
1/3 cup Greek Yogurt (either 0% or 2%)
1 tsp vanilla
¼ cup EVOO
½ tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp baking soda
½ tsp baking powder
2 cups whole wheat flour
1/3 cup fresh blueberries
½ cup chocolate chips (optional)

Directions:

1.)  Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
2.)  Combine all ingredients until smooth.
3.)  Bake 30 minutes.


Hooray! Summer has officially arrived here in Chicago! At Jolly Oak, we have been working diligently on designing and producing new products to enjoy.

With sunshine more abundant, so is one of our favorite fruits, blueberries! This recipe is a fun activity for the kiddos, and the bonus is that it turns out the most delicious muffins! These muffins are healthy enough for a protein packed breakfast and yummy enough for dessert!


3.26.2015

Avocado Toast with Egg Whites and Veggies


We are early risers in my family, which has its positives on school days but negatives when I want to sleep in. Since my house is up before the sun rises, we always eat breakfast! And since it is proven breakfast is the most important meal of the day, (because skipping it affects mood, weight and over all well-being) feed your family breakfast!

Top 3 Excuses for Skipping Breakfast:

1.)  I’m not hungry. Give yourself a little time after you wake up and start with a small nutritious breakfast. That way, when you see a muffin or doughnut, you can resist your growling stomach.

2.)  I’m trying to lose weight. This does not “save” calories! It is the reverse. In a study published by The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition last year, eating a quality breakfast is important for weight control. When you skip breakfast, many overcompensate later.

3.)  There is no time. Some healthy breakfasts do not involve much prep. Try mixing Greek yogurt, granola and berries. Or make a smoothie for on the go. Blend 1 cup almond milk, a handful of blueberries and ice, Vanilla Vega Plant-Based Protein Powder, and a handful of kale/spinach. *Jolly Oak is offering our granola in 12oz bags for a limited time for $2.99. Go to www.jollyoak.com to buy your favorite flavor before they sell out!



If you have time, here is a healthy, delicious and satisfying breakfast one of my friends recently taught me (who learned it from her trainer, Greg Hahaj at GH Fitblab):

Avocado Toast with Egg Whites and Veggies

Ingredients:

1 piece Ezekiel bread
¼ fresh avocado
1 slice fresh tomato
4 egg whites- whisked
your favorite veggies- we used broccoli and onion
salt and pepper to taste
1 tsp EVOO or olive oil spray

Directions:

1.)  In a pan over medium heat, spray olive oil spray or a tsp of EVOO and add veggies. Sprinkle on salt and pepper. Sautee until somewhat tender- about 5-7 minutes.
2.)  Pour in egg whites and cook 4 min on one side, flip when half way cooked and then cook other side.
3.)  While eggs are cooking, toast Ezekiel bread.
4.)  On toasted bread, using a fork, mash the avocado onto the toast. Layer with cooked eggs. Finish with sliced tomato.

3.08.2015

Vegan Banana Pineapple Bread


No one was happy in my house about losing an hour of sleep today and rushing out the door to my son’s basketball playoffs. To lift everyone’s sprits, we baked!

I had ripe bananas and cut up pineapple and thought that might be a naturally sweet nutritious combo! My daughter and I mashed and stirred. I thought I was going to get away without adding any chocolate, but at the last minute, she insisted on chocolate chips. That was definitely the right call! This is now my FAVORITE banana bread recipe! Simple and healthy ingredients that taste so good!



Vegan Banana Pineapple Banana Bread

Ingredients:

2 ripe bananas- mashed
1/2 cup diced pineapple
½ cup white sugar
1 ¾ cup whole wheat flour
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
1 tsp vanilla
½ cup applesauce
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1 tsp cinnamon
*3/4 cup chocolate chips optional

Directions:

1.)  Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2.)  Combine all ingredients until smooth.
3.)  Bake for 45-50 minutes.

3.05.2015

Simple Hamentaschen Cookies


My kids begged to bake hamentaschen cookies after school today. I have never baked these and was intimidated by the task of making the dough. I looked up a couple of recipes and settled on this one for its simplicity and because I had all of the ingredients. These cookies also double as delicious butter cookies if you want an easy butter cookie recipe.

My kids had fun softening the butter to room temperature by squeezing the sticks of butter until they felt mushy. They only cracked one egg on the floor and turned the mixer to its highest speed exploding flour everywhere! Waiting for the dough to chill completely was the hardest part for them. Despite my apprehension and the mess we made, these turned out AMAZING!



Ingredients:

¾ cup unsalted butter, softened to room temperature (3 sticks of butter)
2/3 cup white sugar
1 tsp vanilla
1 egg, room temperature
1tsp grated lemon zest
2 ¼ cup white flour, plus extra flour for making the hamentaschen when it starts to get sticky
¼ tsp salt
1-5 tsp water

Directions:

1.)  Slice butter into squares and then add to mixer bowl. Add sugar and vanilla. Mix at low speed.
2.)  Add egg and lemon zest and mix.
3.)  Slowly add flour and salt and mix on slow speed. If the dough seems too crumbly, add a little water.
4.)  Make a giant ball of dough, wrap in plastic wrap and place in refrigerator overnight. Or if you have kids helping, you can divide the dough into equal giant piles and wrap separately.
5.)  After completely chilled, remove dough from plastic wrap.
6.)  Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
7.)  Roll dough to about ¼ inch thick or as thin as you can without ripping it. I found it easiest to roll dough into balls and then flatten into thin circles on a parchment paper lined baking tray.
8.)  Take whatever filling you prefer- Nutella, chocolate chips or jam and place 1 tsp in the middle.
9.)  Fold the edges into triangles and bake 22-27 minutes or until golden brown.