Holiday Open House at Wellspring Holistic Center

 

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Wellspring Holistic Center will host its ninth annual Holiday Open House and Art Show on Friday, December 2nd and Saturday, December 3rd, at 243 East Brown Street, in East Stroudsburg, Pennsylvania. The hours on Friday are from 4 PM to 8 PM, and on Saturday from 10 AM to 3 PM. Friday night will also feature a wine and cheese reception. Event is FREE and open to everyone!

This year we are giving back to our community with Gratitude and Love! Come and enjoy FREE mini- sessions with one of the many talented Wellspring practitioners. There will also be hourly giveaways, and homemade organic, gluten free treats.

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As always, you will be able to shop for your holiday gifts in the serene and peaceful atmosphere of this beautiful holistic center. The art and the crafts have been created by some of the Pocono’s finest artisans. This year we welcome back co-directors of the center, Anita Bondi and Louise Bowman, with hand-made jewelry, soap, salves, tinctures, and organic candles. Returning to the show will be Susan Bradford with her mandalas, baskets, and crystal bracelets and John Lenz with his hand-hooked rugs. New this year will be pottery by PIA and antiques from Susanne Wilson. The mini-treatments that are being offered include many healing modalities, such as, Massage, Reflexology, Reiki, Myofascial release, EFT, Hypnosis, Cranio-Sacral therapy, and more.

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For more information, call 570-421-3708 or check out our offerings and get directions to the center at www.WellspringHolisticCenter.com.

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Breakfast Time …. Part 4

It’s kind of funny, but actually breakfast was never my “favorite meal of the day”.  Growing up I rarely ate breakfast and it carried into my early adulthood. That was until I went to Bastyr University to study nutrition. I learned the value of eating in the mornings but I still had to work really hard on my metabolism so that I would be hungry in the morning.  I am not as good as my husband who can wake up at any time and be ready to eat breakfast, but I will say that almost everyday I wake up with a small pang of hunger.

Breakfast is still not my favorite meal of the day.  I like breakfast foods, but not really early in the morning.  I like omelets but I would prefer to eat them at 10am rather than 7am.  Most days I don’t eat breakfast food but prefer to eat soup or leftovers, especially when I am at work.  However, for the past several months, Sundays have been my day to make waffles.  I am kind of obsessed with them honestly.  I keep trying all different kinds – always gluten free – coconut flour, almond flour, rice flour, bean flours …. you name it.  It’s been fun.  Here is the recipe for my latest waffle – I hope you will enjoy them as much as me!

waffles

Healthy Oatmeal-Nut Waffles

2 c. milk (cow,almond,soy,etc.)

4 eggs

1 ½ c. almond flour

4-5 Tbs. coconut flour

1/3 c. butter melted, or oil

1 Tbs. baking powder

2 Tbs. coconut nectar

1 c. gluten-free oats

1 c. chopped nuts (walnuts or pecans)

Put milk, eggs, almond flour, oil or butter, baking powder and coconut nectar into a blender or food processor. Process until blended. Add 4 Tbs. coconut flour and process again. Check for thickness. The batter should be thick but not overly thick like cooked oatmeal. If it does not seem thick enough, add another tablespoon of coconut flour and process again. Add the oatmeal and nuts and stir to blend or pulse a few times in the blender to combine.

batter

Bake in preheated waffles iron until waffle stops steaming and is golden (approximately 5 minutes depending upon the waffle iron). Enjoy with jam, honey, maple syrup or fruit syrup.

The first day I made them I put almond butter on top, then blueberry puree, topped it with chopped walnuts and pecans, and drizzled on some maple syrup.  Just delicious!

This morning before tennis I had a waffle with almond and pumpkin seed butter, topped with bananas, chopped walnuts and pecans, cinnamon, and coconut nectar.  That was pretty tasty as well.  The toppings are endless….

Breakfast Time …. Part 3

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Breakfast is the most important meal of the day … did I say this already? In our last two posts, Breakfast Time and Breakfast Time … Part 2, we spoke a little bit about why breakfast is important, such as starting your metabolism and setting your blood sugar right for the day.  I was looking at some recipes and came across another good breakfast idea for those days when you are running out the door.  These breakfast bars are easy to make and easy to carry. They are also perfect to carry with you for a late morning or afternoon snack.

I like the versatility of these bars as well.  You can make them with any nuts or seeds that you prefer and also change the dried fruit to change the whole taste of the bar.  I hope you’ll enjoy them!

Breakfast Bars

2-c. whole grain flour, gluten-free flour or finely ground filberts, walnuts, or sesame seeds

1 c. finely chopped dried apples, papayas or raisins

1-c. filberts or walnuts, coarsely ground

½ c. concentrated frozen fruit juice or fruit puree (applesauce or apple butter) or coconut nectar

1-c. whole sesame seeds

½ c. sesame, walnut or soy oil

2 eggs or egg replacer (2 Tbs. ground flaxseed +  ½ c. water – blended)

2-tsp. pure vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Use a blender or food processor to grind nuts, grains or seeds to desired consistency. Mix the nuts, seeds and/or grains in a large bowl. In a separate bowl combine fruit, fruit juice or puree, oil, vanilla and egg or replacer. Pour over the dry mixture and stir to make a stiff batter – you may need to add more water or juice. Spread mixture into a lightly oiled baking pan. Bake for 30 minutes. Cool. Cut into squares when done.

Kitchen Experiments- Gluten Free, Grain Free Gingerbread

It has been awhile since I have shared any of the foods that I have been cooking in my kitchen but ever since I made this recipe, everyone has been asking me to share it. I found this recipe in a cookbook that has been on display in my office for quite some time.  This cookbook, Nourishing Meals, was written by a two fellow graduates of Bastyr University , Alissa Segersten and Tom Malterre.

book

When the book was released last year, they sent me a copy for my waiting room and to be honest, I placed it there and never really glanced through it.  I am always talking about food with my clients and frequently inquire as to “what’s for dinner”.  One of my lovely clients, Geri, told me that she was making a gluten free zucchini lasagna with pine nut ricotta that evening from the book in the waiting room.  That recipe sounded very interesting and so I thought it might be time for me to glance through that cookbook and see what I could find.  I must admit that I love cookbooks with photos and this one had a middle section with some very pretty glossy colored photos.  The first thing I spotted was the gingerbread.  I love gingerbread so I flipped to the page and found this recipe.

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What I love about this recipe is that it is made without any flour.  I will give you the recipe from the book but then I will tell you the changes that I made.  It is a very bad habit of mine that I rarely follow a recipe exactly the way that it is written.  Sometimes that is a good thing and other times, not so much!

Gingerbread

1 1/2 cups creamy almond butter

1/2 cup mashed cooked sweet potatoes

1/4 cup blackstrap molasses

1/4 cup maple syrup

2 large eggs

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 tablespoon cinnamon

1-2 teaspoons ginger

1/4 teaspoon nutmeg

Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Grease an 8 x 8-inch baking dish with coconut oil.

Place all ingredients into a food processor fitted with the “s” blade and process until smooth and combined. You can also use a hand held mixer but the food processor is easier and creates a smoother batter.

Pour batter into baking dish. Bake for about 35 minutes. Cool and slice. Gingerbread will be fragile hot out of the oven but will firm up once cooled.

baked

When I saw the ingredients in the recipe I could not believe that it would hold together. But it does and it is delicious.  What a treat – a perfect high protein snack or breakfast.

So, as I said, I made a few changes.  I don’t have a food processor any more, so I made it in my Vitamix. I did not think that the baking soda was going to be enough to make it rise, so I added a teaspoon of baking powder as well. I made it twice because the first pan was eaten very quickly.  The first time I used the amount of spices recommended in the recipe.  However, I like my gingerbread spicy so I increased the ginger to about a tablespoon and added cloves as well, maybe a 1/2 teaspoon.  That did the trick.  It was much more spicy amd more to my liking.  Also, the first time I made it, I used regular almond butter from the jar.  The second time I used fresh ground almonds from Earthlight.  The freshly ground are not as creamy and a little drier so I added a little almond milk to make the batter smoother.

Anyway you make this gingerbread, you are going to love it!  Let us know what you think.  Happy baking!

Kitchen Experiments – Gluten-free Gingerbread

Is there any picky eaters in your family? Are there certain foods that your family swears that they do not like? My husband swears that he does not like buckwheat.  I posted the other day that I had made buckwheat pancakes for breakfast and my husband ate them without a complaint.  As soon as the weather turns cold and the pumpkins and squash start to become abundant at the farmers markets, something inside me screams for gingerbread.  With this in mind, I decided it was time for another buckwheat experiment.

I have been making a buckwheat applesauce cake for several months now and it is moist and delicious and my husband has no problem eating it. I thought that I could probably follow the same recipe but add molasses and spices and make a decent buckwheat gingerbread.  Here is what I did:

1 ½ c. Buckwheat Flour (ground white buckwheat)

½ c. Almond Meal

1 tsp. baking soda

1 tsp. baking powder

¼ tsp. salt

1 tsp. xanthan gum

2 Tbs. arrowroot powder

1 tsp. cinnamon

1 tsp. ginger

1/2 tsp.cloves

1 c. applesauce

¼ c. applebutter

½ c. molasses

1 Tbs. oil

¼ c. water

Preheat oven to 350oF.

Combine dry ingredients in a medium bowl.  In a small bowl, combine wet ingredients.  Place wet and dry ingredients in a food processor and process until mixed.  Pour into an oiled 8”x8” square pan.

Bake for 30 minutes.

Now, for a first try, I must say that this was pretty tasty.  It was a little more dense than the buckwheat applesauce cake, but still not overly dense and not overly sweet.  For me, it was just the right amount of sweetness and spice.  I would have added some crystallized ginger if I would have had some, but I thought I might try that the next time.  Here is how much my husband does not like buckwheat!

gingerbread

I guess it was OK!

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Actually, it was a good first attempt.  I think that the next time I make it, I will try to add a little more baking powder to give it more lift. I also think that I might try making it will eggs instead of the arrowroot powder and try to get a little more fluffiness out of it.  On the whole, I would say it was a successful experiment…especially for my husband!

Kitchen Experiments – Buckwheat Applesauce Cake

I had no idea when I started to experiment with recipes for this ALCAT diet how to bake things without eggs. I always imagined that the baked items would not be as light and fluffy as their egg counterparts, but I will admit that I was wrong!  This is the third, fourth or fifth time that I have made this recipe over the past six months and I am thrilled every time I bake it and see it rise to the top of the pan.

The other thing that I am thrilled with is the flavor of buckwheat flour that is freshly ground from raw buckwheat groats.  (I think that I have mentioned in a previous post that I bought a Vitamix machine specifically so that I could grind my grains into flour and I am not sorry that I spent the money.  I love it! When I eat my freshly baked item and I think that I made it all with the freshest ingredients that I could find, it really makes me quite happy!  It’s the small things that do it for me!)

raw groats (Raw Buckwheat Groats)

Buckwheat flour that you buy at the store must be ground from toasted buckwheat because it is very dark in color and has a very distinct flavor.  I tried making 100% buckwheat pancakes with flour from the bag and they had a very strong buckwheat flavor that really did not appeal to me.  It was only when I saw the raw buckwheat groats at Earthlight Natural Foods that I realized there were the raw and the roasted.

Buckwheat is not wheat, nor is it related to wheat nor is it even a grain or a cereal. It is gluten-free and derived from the seeds of a flowering plant so technically I think that you would consider Buckwheat a fruit. This is a great recipe to make in a pan like cornbread or in muffin tins.  It is a very tasty breakfast bread delicious when spread with almond butter.  Enjoy!

buckwheat cake

Buckwheat Applesauce Cake

1 ½ c. Buckwheat Flour (ground white buckwheat)
½ c. Almond Meal
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. baking powder
¼ tsp. salt
1 tsp. xanthan gum
2 Tbs. arrowroot powder
1 tsp. cinnamon
 
1 c. applesauce
¼ c. applebutter
½ c. sweetener (Agave Syrup, Maple Syrup)
1 Tbs. oil
¼ c. water

 Preheat oven to 350oF.

Combine dry ingredients in a medium bowl.  In a small bowl, combine wet ingredients.  Place wet and dry ingredients in a food processor and process until mixed.  Pour into an oiled 8”x8” square pan.

Bake for 30 minutes.

Kitchen Experiments – Granola in a Crockpot

I am all about having the right tools in the kitchen to make life easier. When I counsel people on how to improve their diets a common complaint is “I just don’t have time to cook good meals!” My first response to this is: “what kind of tools do you have in your kitchen?” This makes all the difference in the world! I do not think that I could cook without my pressure cooker, rice cooker and crock pot. OK, I could, but it would take me a lot longer.

A few years ago I really wanted to use my crock pot more so I bought several cookbooks. Who knew you could make so many things using a crock pot. I was thinking soups, stews, meats, but granola?  I never would have thought!  Well, if you think that you do not have time to make homemade granola because you don’t have time to stand around the kitchen waiting to turn the granola every few minutes so it won’t burn – pull out your crock pot and give this a try!

It was so easy.  If you have a favorite granola recipe or something sitting on the back burner waiting for you to have time, pull it out and let’s get cooking!  Basically what I did was put my dry ingredients in a large bowl.  I used gluten-free oats, pumpkin seeds, coconut, black currants, and maple sugar.  The recipe also called for milk powder but since I can’t have milk products yet, I used brown rice protein powder instead to give it an extra boost.  The next step was to turn the crock pot on high and melt/heat the liquids for 30 minutes.  I did not have that much time so I decided to heat the liquids on the stove in a small pot.  I used agave syrup and 1/2 cup of oil, instead of 1 cup and used 1/2 cup of applesauce as well. Once it was heated through, I poured the liquids over the dry and mixed it until everything was coated.

granola

I did preheat the crock pot while I was preparing the ingredients.  I had it on high for maybe 15 minutes.  It seemed pretty hot when I added the oat mixture.  Here comes the easy part.  I cooked it on high for 1 1/2 hours with the lid off, stirring once every 30 minutes.  After the hour and a half, I turned the crock pot to low, placed the lid on it, and left it for 3 hours.  The recipe had said 4 hours but when I came home after 3, it seemed pretty well cooked.  I removed the lid for another 1/2 hour to cook off some of the moisture and then it was done!

cooked granolaI allowed it to cool and then placed it in an airtight container.  The next morning I had delicious granola with oat milk for breakfast!  Boy, that was easy!