PB&J No Bake Protein Balls

pbjproteinballsLooking for a not so sweet peanut butter treat? I have it right here! They seriously taste like little PB&J’s.

What You’ll Need

1 banana- super mashed

1/2 C nut butter of your choice – I went with crunchy peanut butter.

2-3 scoops protein powder – I used vanilla pea protein.

1/2 TSP cinnamon

1 TBSP chia seed

1/4 C dried cherries, unsweetened

Combine all the ingredients well. Scoop evenly into balls. I had about 18. Stored in the fridge, they should last about a week.

Lemon Blueberry Mint Ice Cubes

We are in the middle of a blizzard so naturally I’m making ice cubes. What? It’s important to stay hydrated while watching Hubband and the kid shovel snow. I kid, I do my fair share of shoveling.

I love water. It’s my go to drink. But sometimes I just need a little more flavor and these cubes are perfect for that. I just toss a few in my water bottle every morning. They are also super versatile. You can use any number of flavor combinations.

What You’ll Need

icecubes

ice cube tray

blueberries – or whichever fruit you’d like

lemon juice

mint – I used mint we dehydrated from our garden last summer.

That’s it. Put a few berries in each slot, add a splash of lemon juice, a pinch of mint and freeze. Toss them into your water and enjoy!

icecubes1

Brussels & Potatoes

brussels potatoes On my first trip to Maggie’s Farm last winter, I tasted their amazing brussels sprouts (minus the meat, of course). I’ve been trying to recreate that dish since. What I came up with tonight I think is even better. I threw these ingredients together without measuring but it’s so damn good I had to share.

Potatoes cut into bite sized pieces

Brussels sprouts

Marinade-

2 TBSP grape juice

2 TBSP peanut oil

2 TBSP balsamic vinegar

salt to taste

pepper to taste

Let the potatoes and Brussels marinate for a bit, throw into a pan and roast on 350 degrees for about an hour. I used relatively small Brussels. If you use larger ones, they may have to roast longer. I paired mine with roasted tofu. Enjoy!

Lately 1.15.16

light_blue__yellow_abstract_wallpapersI’m going to do this bullet style since I have a sick kid and I’m up to my eyeballs in SEO.

  • I’ve immersed myself in all things SEO and marketing this week. To say it hurts my head is an understatement. I just want to make pretty things and have the rest take care of myself. But that’s not very responsible or grownup or any kind of how selling works. So I’m shutting up my inner 4-year-old and doing it right.
  • Our chickens are suddenly mega producing eggs. Like we have 7 dozen sitting on the counter. It’s a wonderful problem to have.
  • Shakeology. No, seriously. I resisted buying it for so long. It’s so expensive. But I definitely feel a difference on the days I don’t have it. And it’s true- it really does help keep cravings away. It must be all those super nutrients.
  • Gaiam’s pressure point massager. It really helps with all the squats I’ve been doing lately.
  • Let’s take a moment to recognize the world has lost a few great talents this week. I’ve been listening to David Bowie while binge watching all things Alan Rickman. If nothing else, it makes me pause a moment and be grateful for all I have.

Here’s to a wonderful and relaxing weekend!

Lately 1.8.16

kc4We are finally finding our groove over here. I hope the new year is treating you well. Here are some things I’m loving lately-

Grandma’s say the darndest things. I especially love #5.

Carmen Herrera. She’s my new hero. She kept at her craft and was finally recognized for her talents at the age of 94. Keep working on your dreams people! If for no other reason than it makes YOU happy.

The Miracle Morning. Hal Elrod is a pretty amazing dude. His is an inspirational story. It’s no secret I struggle with time and balance. Does anyone really have this figured out? All I know is, getting up before everyone else, even though morning’s SUCK, is all kinds of beneficial for me. It allows me to enjoy my day without stressing over all the little things that usually keep my brain occupied. Like dirty floors.

Kiddie Crusoe. Emme chose to have her birthday party here again for her 4th birthday. I can’t say enough good things about them. It’s reasonably priced AND they do all the setup and cleanup. Win, win.

Chrome extensions. Are you using Chrome as your browser? No? You should be! I’m loving these extensions- MightyText, Grammerly, and Honey (who doesn’t love saving money?).

Master’s Hammer and Chisel. It’s all kinds of hard and sweat inducing and I find myself craving it on rest days.

What are you loving lately?

January Simplicity

New-Year-Eve-1I find this time of year so refreshing. The non-stop activity of the holidays is winding down and everything shifts back to routines, simplicity, and quiet. Well, as quiet as it can be with a nearly 4-year-old who thinks she’s a werewolf puppy.

We’ve taken down our decorations and have shifted our focus to the new year. While I don’t necessarily create resolutions, I do love setting goals. So here are a few I’m pouring most of my energy into this coming year-

  • Focus on nutrient density. I’m seriously the worst with this. I never get enough protein or veggies. (I KNOW.) The last few weeks have been eye-opening, to say the least. I’ve been tracking my food by nutrient and I’m horrified. Not only do I want to be as healthy as I can be for me, I want to set a stellar example for Emme. This naturally ties into my next goal.
  • Focus on physical activity. I’ve already started this goal and am seeing some pretty amazing results. I’ve been working with a coach and doing the Master’s Hammer and Chisel Program. Warning- this is a TOUGH workout. One month in and I’m still sore most days. I didn’t think I’d like it, but I’m so glad I made the decision to try. I’m loving the variety and strength work. I’ve also learned something valuable emotionally- just do it. Yeah, I know. Seems simple. Just press play. Even if you’re going slow and half assing the moves, you’re still putting in the effort and reinforcing your commitment to yourself.
  • Organize My Businesses. I’ve really let these slide since Emme’s birth. We’re finally at the age we can be independent. I need/want more to my life than just being a mom and she needs more than just me all day, every day.
  • Less Technology, More Play. I struggle with this daily. I’m addicted to my phone and all it can do for me. This year I’m doing my best to treat it like it’s only a phone and not a tiny computer keeping me up to date on every move everyone else makes. If I want to check email, I need to sit my ass down at my computer.

I hope reflecting on this past year has been beneficial and the new year brings you love, joy, and happiness!

Balance

While I don’t necessarily believe there is such a thing, lately I’ve been looking to equalize the chaos. We’ve all spent the last month in some stage of sickness and it’s given me loads of time to think. I’m living most of my life either in a state of what I didn’t get done earlier or what do I need to do later. I’m constantly working to not have to work as hard later. Does that make sense? Or does it just make me sound crazy? Either way, I’m really trying to be more present. How appropriate as we’re coming up on Thanksgiving, right?

It’s all too easy to go through life focusing on the what if’s and when this happens I’ll be happy/stress free etc. But by doing that I’m wishing away huge parts of my life and that isn’t the way to be my happiest. So this week I’m making an effort to focus on (and enjoy!) where I am in any given moment. I want to give my energy and undivided attention to those I’m with. This means less scrolling mindlessly through social media and more doing the things I love. If you celebrate, I wish you a Happy Thanksgiving filled with family, friends, good food, and love.

Canning Apple Pie Filling

theveganfarmer.com applepieIt’s that time of year we amp up the canning and prepare for the winter. It’s apple season which means all the things apple are being canned- cider, applesauce, apple pie filling. Filling is great to have on hand to whip up a quick pie or cobbler. We host once a month family dinners and most major holiday events so lots of pies are being made. It’s also super tasty on toast, in oatmeal, and honestly, straight from the jar. We canned 15 quarts this weekend. This will last us the winter. It’s a large recipe. You’ll need to reduce it for smaller batches.

What You’ll Need

15 lbs apples, peeled and cored

13 C sugar

3 TBSP cinnamon

3/4 TSP nutmeg

6 TSP salt

3 TSP cardamom

3 C cornstarch

9 TBSP lemon juice

30 C water

In a very large pan mix the sugar, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, cardamom, and 15 cups of water. Cook until dissolved. While that’s dissolving, whisk together 15 cups of water and 3 cups of cornstarch. Once the sugar mixture is dissolved, add the cornstarch mixture and stir frequently until it’s boiling, bubbly, and thick. Remove from heat and add the lemon juice.

While all that is happening, sterilize your jars in a water bath. Remove, and while hot, fill 3/4 with apples. Pour in the filling leaving 1/2 inch room at the top of each jar. Slide a knife around to rid the jars of air bubbles. Put the lids on and loosely screw on the bands. Return the quarts to the water bath. Once the water is boiling, can for 20 minutes. Remove the jars. Allow them to cool completely before removing them. Be sure to check each sealed properly before storing. Enjoy!

theveganfarmer.com applepiefilling

Chickpea Salad Sammich

theveganfarmer.com chickpeasandI am incapable of saying sandwich.

One of my favorite meals when I was a meat eater was a tuna fish sandwich with a side of tortilla chips and a cup of coffee.  Yes, I think I was an old man. Sometimes I get a craving for that lunch and I find chickpeas work wonders to satisfy it.

What You’ll Need

1 can chickpeas, rinsed and drained

1/4 C vegan mayo

green onion

1/4 C relish

1 TSP celery seed, or some diced celery

2 TSP mustard

Mash most of the chickpeas. Add the remaining ingredients and stir it all up.  Throw it on a sandwich thin, roll, on top a bed of lettuce and enjoy! Coffee is optional.