Soothing Lavender Lemonade

Adding lavender to your lemonade is not only tasty, but also a great way to enhance the fantastic medicinal qualities of lavender. Lavender is a wonderfully aromatic herb that soothes the senses.  

You’ll Need

12 cups pure water 

1 cup raw organic honey

5 – 20 drops lavender pure organic essential oil ( I use doTerra )

8 – 10 lemons, peeled and juiced

Lavender sprigs, for garnish

Here’s How:

Combine all ingredients and place in the refrigerator to chill. 

Adjust tartness or sweetness by adding or extracting honey or lemon.

Turkey Pho Gà! A play on a classic. Vietnamese Chicken Noodle Soup.


The morning after. Feeling abundant due to the over indulgence of the holiday and looking for something different to do with your leftover Turkey? Make something light and delicious– a spin on the classic Vietnamese chicken noodle soup! 

The trick to delicious Pho gà is to add a little of each garnish as you eat your way through the bowl, not to dump them in all at once. You will want the herbs to maintain their fragrance, and the bean sprouts to stay crunchy in the soup — good Pho gà is all about aroma and texture. If you add too much – too soon, you’ll end up with wilted, over cooked herbs and limp soft sprouts– which will totally defeat the whole purpose behind the classic dish. 

The other trick to this dish is really good quality stock! Don’t skimp. People painstakingly skim the stock while cooking the chicken for Pho Ga –just to gain a clean clear broth. 

In Hanoi, you’ll find everyone enjoying delicious Pho – anytime of day. Breakfast, lunch or dinner! Pho to Vietnamese is the equivalent of Bugers to Americans– But better!

Ingredients:

1 pound cooked turkey, about 4 cups, shredded

6 whole scallions

1 thumb-sized piece of ginger, peeked and crushed

1 tablespoon kosher salt

3 quarts good quality chicken stock

Fish sauce, for seasoning

1 (16-ounce) package dried rice vermicelli, cooked according to manufactures directions

1 bunch scallions, thinly sliced

1 bunch cilantro, chopped 

Garnishes 

1 bunch Thai basil sprigs
4 cups Mung bean sprouts

4 Limes, cut into wedges

4 Jalapeño chiles, stemmed and thinly sliced into rings

Method:

In a large heavy bottomed stock pot on high heat combine the scallions ginger, stock, and fish sauce. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer for about 35 minutes. Taste for seasoning and add additional fish sauce to season. Add turkey, turn off heat and set aside. (Do not serve the cooked scallions and ginger from this pot)

Prepare the soups garnish and arrange the basil, mung sprouts, lime wedges, and jalapeño slices on a serving platter.

Divide the prepared rice noodles evenly among warmed soup bowls. Top each bowl with about 1/2-3/4 cup of the shredded turkey, then divide the chopped scallions and chopped cilantro evenly among the bowls. 

Ladle the hot stock over the top, dividing it evenly. Serve immediately, accompanied with the platter of garnishes.

The Faux-Re-O! Homemade Vegan Oreo Cookies. Clean ! No additives, preservatives or shelve-stabilizers! 

Aside from the slightly bizarre flavors of the past few years, Kraft Foods – the parent to the Oreo, a Nabisco brand; has a dynasty into the worlds best tasting cookie!  A large corporate box chain foods  company–but, this means highly processed, refined food ingredients. Also, foods contain additives; that might not be so healthy If you are feeding your family clean. Here is my adaption to the beloved, “Oreo” Cookie!

The Faux-Re-O!



Ingredients:

2 1/2 cups AP flour, Yucca flour or GF flour, sifted

1 cup unsweetened Dutch processed cocoa powder, sifted

1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

12 ounces Vegan butter or extra virgin coconut oil, room temp, slightly softened ( extra virgin has minimal coconut flavor)

1 1/2 cups granulated cane sugar

4 Tablespoons of VeganEgg reconstituted in 1 cup water

2 teaspoons pure Madagascar vanilla extract

1/2 cup organic vegetable shortening

Non-stick cooking

Cream Filling ( recipe below)

Method:
1. In a small bowl combine flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl. Whisk to incorporate ingredients well throughout the flour. Set aside.

 

2. In the bowl of a stand mixer, or a medium bowl–combine 10 ounces of the vegan butter with the 3/4 cup granulated sugar. Beat on medium-high until combined and pale in color. About two minutes. Scrape sides, add 1/2 the vanilla, and beat an additional 2 minutes.

 

3. Add the VeganEgg and flour mixture in alternate batches. Mix well to incorporate after each addition before adding an additional. Once all ingredients have been added mix until dough forms a ball.

 

4. With a sifter, lightly dust a clean work surface with cocoa powder.

 

5. Turn dough ball out onto the lightly dusted cocoa powered surface. Also dust the top of the dough lightly. Cut in 1/2.

 

6. With a cocoa dusted rolling pin, roll the dough pieces to flatten into 2 – 1/2 inch round disc. Wrap both discs individually in plastic wrap- sealing airtight. Refrigerate flat for a minimum of 1 hour.

 
5. After 1 hour has lapsed – remove a disc from plastic wrap and place on a clean, lightly cocoa dusted work surface. Working while dough remains cold, roll out to 1/4 inch thick. Run the back of a long knife or palate knife under the dough to make sure it is not sticking to the work surface.

 

6. Preheat oven 350’F Degrees. Prepare two high sided baking sheets with parchment sprayed with non-stick cooking spray.

 

7. With a 1 1/2 in round cocoa dusted cookie cutter begin cutting cutting 64 round 1/4 inch round cookies.

 

8. Using a metal spatula – place on prepared baking sheet with minimal movement protecting the integrity of its shape. Work quickly while cold. If dough begins to heat up, place back in the refrigerator to cool again.

 

9. Continue to ball up the cookie dough up and re-roll for more cookies until you’re completely out of dough. Repeat with the remaining disc.

 
10. Bake for 8-10 minutes until they are firm. Remove and allow to cool. Make cream filling.


Additional Cream Filling Ingredients:

4 cups powdered sugar sifted

2 Tablespoons nut milk

 
Method:

1. In a small bowl beat the remaining 2 ounces of the Vegan butter with the vegetable shortening until smooth. Add remaining vanilla extract. ( or cut and scrape one fresh vanilla bean pod * optional)

 

2. Once combine, add sifted powdered sugar and 1 tablespoon of the nut milk. Mix. Check constancy. If too dry, add the additional nut milk to form a thick cookie filling like paste. Set aside.

 
3. Once cookies are cooled, spread the filling on the bottom of half of the cookies and sandwich them with the other half. Slightly squeezing to completely sandwich.
Serve with ice cold nut milk. Or use to prepare Stephen Dimmicks ( from Glossie Girl ) Oreo Cookie Pancakes. Recipe here!

Variation to filling : For chocolate filling add 1/2 cup cocoa powder and 1 /2-2 Tablespoons of additional nut milk to the already blended creamed filling recipe.

Fun P B & J Sushi Rolls The Littles Can Make Themselves!

Kids should be in the kitchen as little as 2-3 years old with supervision! Teaching them and getting them get tactile is so important in so many ways. Here is a good introductory  lunchtime activity to get them involved. Keep in mind, kids are more likely to eat what they prepare! 

 

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Nut Butter and Preserve Sushi Rolls

Ingredients:

2 Tablespoons homemade nut butter, creamy
2 Tablespoons your favorite preserves
2 slices per person of sliced sandwich bread

Method:

With a sharp knife remove the crust from the bread.
Using a rolling pin, completely flatten the bread while carefully keeping the integrity of its shape.
Spread the nut butter and preserves across the bread
carefully role each slice into a tiny little spiral and cut into four evenly sized pieces. serve standing up to reveal the swirls of the PB&J.