Breakfast

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Make a Healthier (and easy!) Pancake

It’s been a while since I’ve eaten a pancake.  Ok, quite a while, actually.  Although gluten-free pancakes are pretty easy, grain-free is a different story, especially for those of us who find almond flour too tough too handle.  Then I saw something online (I think it was on Facebook) about making pancakes from eggs and a banana.  Seriously!  Well, I was so curious I just had to try it.  It works!  I’ve made them a few times now, and I have been pleasantly surprised.

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The recipe is easy – 2 eggs, beaten + 1 smushed banana.  That’s basically it, although I usually throw in a dash of cinnamon and a couple drops of vanilla, just because.  As you can see in the picture, they aren’t as thick as a “grainy” pancake, more like a thicker crepe. Still yummy, especially smeared with almond butter.  (Fair warning:  a pretty strong banana flavor so if you aren’t crazy about banana, this recipe might not be your favorite).

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Turkey Clafouti

Although this has an unusual name, it’s very much like a crustless quiche and is another great basic dish that can be used with countless different ingredients.  For years I have made a Plum Clafouti which is one of my all-time favorite deserts, but I had never seen it used with savory ingredients.

I originally saw this recipe on one of my favorite blog sites, Mark’s Daily Apple. Click over to Mark’s site to see the full explanation, and to see the original recipe which is a Chicken Curry Clafouti.  Since I’m not a curry fan, I decided to go in a different direction.  You could easily use this recipe with chicken, salmon, sausage, etc. but I am always looking for another way to use turkey, so tried this with some leftover turkey breast I had in the freezer.  I used a spice mixture that was specifically for turkey, used mostly for Thanksgiving dinners, I’m sure.  It made the house smell heavenly!  Give this a try using your favorite combinations and let me know what you come up with!

A few quick notes: I had come challenges with the clafouti getting brown too quickly, so make sure you keep a very close eye on it and start checking it at 25-30 minutes (recipe calls for a 45 minute cooking time).  I also think next time I’ll try reducing the oven temperature from 400° to 350° so it doesn’t brown as quickly but still cooks through.

Muffins!

Any of  you who have been attending the Healthy Priority get-togethers, or have just been hanging around with me lately, know that I’ve been really excited about making grain-free/sugar-free (and therefore low carb) baked goods that are really tasty.  Now, I am sure that people who are used to eating those small cakes that pass for muffins at your local grocery would be used to way more fat, sugar, and carbs.  But for the rest of us who try very hard to feed our bodies foods that help and not hurt, having these muffins are a real treat!

These two have been the favorite recipes so far.  Both come from Elana Amsterdam’s fabulous cookbook called The Gluten-Free Almond Flour Cookbook.  It’s been mentioned on this site lots of time because it has become somewhat of the gold standard for baking with almond flour.  If you are interested in healthy, grain-free and low-carb baking, go buy her book!

Both of these recipes have been used and changed a number of times already.  These are the basic recipes, but try experimenting to make them your own.  One change is that I sometimes have used melted butter instead of the grapeseed oil just for a bit of richness.  I’ve used dried cranberries instead of blueberries in the Banana Blueberry recipe, and I’ve only tried the Cinnamon Apple Muffins using unsweetened apple butter in place of the agave nectar in the original recipe.  I might try applesauce next time, and maybe add some raisins?  You get the idea – be creative!  If you guys come up with some good variations, let me know in the comment section below so we can all share!  And don’t forget – these muffins taste fabulous with a spread of nut butter on them.  My favorite right now?  Homemade Macadamia Nut Butter.  Yum!

BANANA BLUEBERRY MUFFINS

  • 3 cups blanched almond flour
  • 1/4 tsp. sea salt
  • 1 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 2 tbls. grapeseed oil
  • 3 large eggs
  • 2 cups (4-5) mashed very ripe bananas
  • 1 cup frozen blueberries

Preheat oven to 350°.  Line 12 muffin cups with paper liners.  In a large bowl, combine the almond flour, salt, and baking soda.  In a medium bowl, whisk together the grapeseed oil and eggs.  Stir the wet ingredients into the almond flour mixture until thoroughly combined.  Stir the bananas into the batter, then fold in the blueberries.  Spoon the batter into the prepared muffin cups.

Bake for 35-40 minutes, until the muffin tops are golden brown and a toothpick inserted into the center of a muffin comes out clean.  Let the muffins cool in the pan for 30 minutes, then serve.

CINNAMON APPLE MUFFINS

  • 2 cups blanched almond flour
  • 1/2 tsp. sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/4 cup arrowroot powder
  • 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup grapeseed oil
  • 1/2 cup agave nectar (I used unsweetened apple butter)
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tbls. vanilla
  • 2 medium apples – peeled, cored, and diced into 1/4″ cubes

Preheat the oven to 350°.  Line 10-12 muffin cups with paper liners.  In a large bowl, combine the almond flour, salt, baking soda, arrowroot powder, and cinnamon.  In a medium bowl, whisk together the grapeseed oil, agave nectar, egg, and vanilla extract.  Stir the wet ingredients into the almond flour mixture until thoroughly combined, then fold in the apples.  Spoon the batter into the prepared muffin cups.

Bake for 30-35 minutes, until the muffin tops are golden brown and a toothpick inserted into the center of a muffin comes out clean.  Let the muffins cool in the pan for 30 minutes, then serve.


Portobello and Pesto Egg Scramble

Becky contributed this to our Healthy Breakfast ideas:

In a medium saute’ pan, cook 1 sliced portobello mushroom cap with 1/4 cup chopped red onion in 1 tsp. olive oil until soft, about 5 minutes.  Whisk 4 egg whites with 1 tbls. water and add to pan.  Scramble mixture over medium heat until eggs are no longer runny.  Add salt and pepper to taste.

Just before removing from heat, fold in !/4 cup shredded part-skim mozzarella (or omit for a Healthy Priorities breakfast) and 1 tsp. prepared pesto.  Serve with 1 slice of toast (hopefully GF or grain free!)

Healthy Vegetable Quiche

I’m so glad we now have a healthy alternative to the standard quiche recipe.  Yes, I agree, those yummy quiche recipes that we’ve used since the 70’s are fabulous – and also full of creme, cheeses and don’t forget all the carbs in the crust!  So here is one option that is not only a healthier option, but so easy.  We love easy!!

ALMOND FLOUR CRUST

This recipe is based on the recipe found in Elana Amsterdam’s fabulous cookbook, The Gluten-Free Almond Flour Cookbook that I have been raving about.  She includes fresh herbs or scallions in her recipe.  The following is the basic recipe and you can decide if you’d like to add more flavor to it depending on your quiche filling.

  • 1 1/2 cups blanched almond flour
  • 1/2 tsp. sea salt
  • 1 tbls. minced fresh herbs, scallions, etc.
  • 1/4 cup grapeseed oil
  • 1 tbls. water

Preheat oven to 350°.  Combine the almond flour, salt and herbs in a large bowl.  In a medium bowl, whisk together the grapeseed oil and water.  Stir the wet ingredients into the almond flour mixture until thoroughly combined.  Press into a 9″ tart pan or pie pan. (Hands work best for this task).  Bake for about 15 mins, until golden brown and remove from oven.  Let cool before filling.

QUICHE FILLING

  • 5 eggs
  • 3/4 cup rice or almond milk (unsweetened)
  • Approx. 1 1/2 cups of filling ingredients (mixture of veggies, combination of meat and veggies, etc.)
  • 1/2 onion, roughly sliced (to fit in food processor)
  • 1/2-3/4 tsp. salt (depending on taste)
  • 1/2 tsp. pepper
  • Fresh nutmeg

1.  To prepare veggies, use shredder attachment for food processor.  Shove a chunk of cauliflower, small bunch of broccoli , two or three carrots, and onion half through the shredder until you have small veggie “pellets”.  Lightly steam veggies, or saute in a bit of coconut or olive oil until they soften.  (I have also put the veggies in raw – without sauteing – and it worked fine, they’re just a bit crunchier).

2.  Whisk eggs, rice/almond milk, salt and pepper together until completely combined and smooth.  You can also add any spices or fresh herbs at this point and combine well.

3.  Place approximately 1 1/2 cups of the prepared veggies into the pre-baked pie crust.  Pour quiche filling over the veggies.  You might shave a bit of fresh nutmeg on the top for a bit of extra flavor.

4.  Bake in a 350° oven until set – about 25-30 minutes (but keep checking to be sure since all ovens and pans are different).  Let cool on a wire rack a bit before serving.