Tag Archives: local honey

Homemade Oat and Seed Granola

9 Apr Homemade Oat and Seed Granola with oats, salba, chia, pepitas, and flax

As I recently filled you in, I’m on a mission right now to keep The Hubs feeling full while watching his race weight as we continue the countdown to Boston.  This task is far more difficult than one might expect; on one hand he is the most relentlessly driven, self-disciplined person I’ve ever met, yet on the other- as soon as it’s territory he doesn’t have to dominate (read: any and all of the choices on the food he consumes)- he very willingly relinquishes all control.  Don’t read into this as a complaint, I take great pride in the fact that such a capable, intelligent person would entrust his diet to me fully.  It does mean that I have a very important job.

It also mean that my phone features a constant feed of questions about what he can and cant eat.  Which is pretty adorable:

text collage

A donut? Are you serious?

See… adorable.

In order to keep Mr. Adorable away from the donuts on the road to Boston, I try to send a variety of tasty, wholesome snacks along each day to help keep him feeling satisfied.  Granola is the absolute easiest option since it can be consumed a variety of ways- dry as trail mix, sprinkled over yogurt or cottage cheese, layered over sliced bananas and fruit, or in a bowl with alt-milk and a spoon.

For me, granola is one of those foods it makes me sick to think of purchasing because the store bought versions are A) infuriatingly expensive in comparison to their raw ingredients and prep effort level, B) normally contain lots of unnecessary salt and refined sugar, and C) are always lacking just a little something that would make it exactly what you wanted… but that you could easily make at home in the perfect, custom manner.

Chances are, you have the basic raw ingredients hanging out in your pantry just waiting to be used.  See what I mean:

  • 2 cups whole rolled oats
  • 1/2-3/4 cup nuts, coarsely chopped
  • 1/4-1/2 cup seeds
  • 1/3 cup dried fruit (coarsely chopped if using apples or apricots)
  • 1/2 tsp of sea salt or kelp flakes
  • 4-6 tbs of honey or maple syrup
  • 2 tbs of coconut oil

From there you can get fancy with a pinch of this or a dash of that, but in the end it’s really all the same.  It ends up being a great way to use up odds and ends in the pantry- which is far more eco-friendly and budget conscious than buying store bought.

Granola making (and consuming) rarely looks the same way twice in this household, but I do have a favorite framework I like to work around that includes lots of fabulous seeds and other little nuggets of scrumptious goodness.  Give it a go in your kitchen, but don’t be afraid to change it up to your liking.  And- MOST IMPORTANTLY- don’t turn it into something that necessitates a trip to the grocery store… use up what you’ve got in that pantry.

Unless, of course, you aren’t yet someone who stocks oats, seeds, and grade B maple syrup. In that case, get thee to the market PRONTO!

 

Homemade Oat and Seed Granola with oats, salba, chia, pepitas, and flax

Homemade Oat and Seed Granola

  • 2 cups whole rolled oats
  • generous 1/2 cup raw almond, coarsely chopped
  • 1/4 cup pepitas
  • 2 tbs salba
  • 2 tbs black chia seeds
  • 2 tbs quinoa (raw)
  • 2 tbs golden flax seeds
  • 2 tbs shredded, unsweetened coconut
  • 1/3 cup dried cherries
  • 1/2 tsp kelp flakes
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 4 tbs grade B maple syrup
  • 2 tsp local honey
  • 2 tbs coconut oil, melted
  • slash of vanilla extract
  • splash of almond extract
  • generous pinch of sea salt

Directions: Preheat oven to 300 degrees F.

Combine all ingredients in a mixing bowl and, using a silicone spatula, toss well to incorporate.  Spread on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.

Bake for 15 minutes.  Remove from oven, toss, and return to bake for 10-15 minutes more.

Allow to cool completely on baking pan before serving of storing.

*Frequency of tossing during cooking as well as length of cooling time will affect the size of your granola clusters.  If you like chunkier granola, toss less and allow to cool completely undisturbed.

Will keep in airtight container for about 2 weeks in fridge.

#FirstontheFirst- Stuffed Naan with Candied Red Onion

1 Apr #FirstontheFirst- Naan stuffed with candied red onions, currants, garlic, and cilantro

First on the First Kitchen Adventure

Last month’s First on the First (lobster wellington, anyone?!) gave my wallet fits.  And while his month wasn’t a budget buster, it provided challenges of a different kind.  We’re tackling naan which is 1) made with refined white flour, and 2) something I make with some frequency.  Let me expand…

If you are even an infrequent reader you’ve probably gathered that we aren’t a gluten free (or flour free) household at this point, so the “refined white flour” challenge might be slightly confusing.  The Hubs is currently battling an achilles injury less than a month away from Boston Marathon, so we are being very careful about his diet and ensuring that he not put on weight during this change in activity level.  So white flour/white sugar are no-no’s for him right now.  Given his lack of self control when it comes to home-baked goods, it also means it’s a big fat no-no in our kitchen if he is at home.

#FirstontheFirst- Homemade Naan

The thing is, I really didn’t want to explore naan baking with alt-flours.  It just didn’t appeal to me in the slightest.  So I needed to bake naan in our house when The Hubs was gone but there was someone other than just me and Baby Bird around to eat it.

The other problem that presented, however, was that good ol’ white flour naan wouldn’t be a real First on the First for me since it’s a pretty common menu item in our house.  Tikka masala, Indian slaw, and garlic naan fresh off the griddle stand as a pretty satisfying meal around these parts so trying something new would mean moving beyond my beloved basic garlic naan, brushed with butter and topped with parsley.

Since I wasn’t going to waiver on the flour type, I decided to make a stuffed naan… during a playdate so someone would be around to help with the consumption issue.  I originally wanted to stuff it with ground lamb, candied red onions, currants, and cilantro… but our playdate guests were vegetarians so the lamb had to go.  I also decided that I wanted to bake it in the oven instead of on the stovetop grill as usual because it seemed like a safer option with extra sets of tiny hands roaming about.

The mix of daytime guests and vegetarian stuffing ended up being the right mix, because there wasn’t a tray full of baked goods poised to taunt The Hubs when he returned from work.  And the filling was darn good!

When push comes to shove, my preference will still be the standard garlic naan grilled hot and fluffy on the stovetop- somewhere between oven-baking and stuffing the texture changes just a bit- but this was a nice, substantial treat to now have in my repertoire.

#FirstontheFirst- Naan stuffed with candied red onions, currants, garlic, and cilantro

Naan Stuffed with Candied Red Onions, Currants, Garlic and Cilantro

  • half a red onion, minced
  • 5 tbs butter
  • 1 tbs red wine vinegar
  • 2 tbs local honey
  • 2 tbs + 1 tsp white sugar
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • 1 cup warm water
  • 1/4 cup dried currants
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/3 cup cilantro leaves, chopped
  • salt

Directions:  Place a pizza stone in oven.  Preheat oven to 550 degrees F (convection).

In a heavy bottom sauce pan, melt 3 tbs of butter.  Add onions and saute until beginning to soften.  Add vinegar, honey, and 2 tbs sugar.  Over low heat, cook for about15 minutes until syrup is thick and condensed and resembles a chunky jam.

In a small bowl, melt 1 tbs of butter.

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, 1 tsp salt and remaining sugar. Pour egg mixture into the flour and stir to combine.  Pour half of the warm water into the flour mixture, using a spatula to combine.  Add the melted butter and mix again to combine.  Using your hands to knead within the bowl, slowly add the remaining water until the dough becomes well incorporated but not sticky.

Allow dough to rest for 30 minutes.

In a clean bowl, combine candied onions, currants, garlic, and cilantro leaves.  Stir to combine.

Melt remaining butter.

Divide dough into 4 portions.

Working with the first portion of dough, roll out slightly into a circle on parchment paper.  Place 1/4 of the filling mixture into the center, allowing at least a 1/2 inch boarder around the outside.  Dampen the edges of the dough with water and pinch together in the center to seal as though you are drawing up a purse.

Invert the dough, seal side down, and roll out once again to flatten gently.  Brush top with butter and place directly on pizza stone for 4-6 minutes.  Repeat with remaining dough portions.

 

These ladies also took on the naan challenge this month:

 

Homemade Gummy Hearts

26 Jan Homemade Gummy Hearts- sugar free and packed with fresh fruit from Go Running, Mama!

Homemade Gummy Hearts- sugar free and packed with fresh fruit from Go Running, Mama!

We’ve got a toddler in the household, so our home runs on the currency of stickers, kale chips, and fruit snacks.  The Hubs hates stickers.  They end up on everything and are a beast to peel off of the tile after he unknowingly grinds them in place on the way out the door for his 5 am run.  I have fingernails, so stickers aren’t my adversary.  I, on the other hand, am opposed to fruit snacks.  Even the organic, naturally flavored ones are just concentrated nuggets of sugar- and that’s not even visiting the food dyes and preservatives in  the supermarket variety.  (Why are these things called “fruit snacks” anyways?  Let’s be real.  Actual fruit- fresh or dried- should be called “fruit snacks” and everything else should be correctly labeled as gummy treats.)  But Baby Bird love both stickers and fruits snacks, so there aren’t getting eliminated- we just needed to find a way to make them better!  Happily, I discovered this homemade gummy bear recipe from Taralyn over at Undressed Skeleton and was eager to give it a try.

Since Baby Bird loves Valentine’s Day and we are on a heart shaped treats kick at our house (check out our amazingly healthy heart shaped cherry kale pops), I though it would be fun to make little gummy hearts that we could also use as better snacking options to give to friends in place of the go-to red dye 40 laden store bought treats (I’ve totally got my good friend Evin and her struggles with food dyes on the mind).  We stayed pretty true to Taralyn’s recipe and the results were fabulous- sugar free gummy treats packed with fresh fruit!

We had lots of great local citrus on hand thanks to our CSA box, and it was nice to intimately know the source of our ingredients!  We had lots of oranges, Meyer lemons, and lovely key limes so I opted for a citrus medley for the strawberry snacks (1/2 cup orange juice, 1/4 cup key lime, 1/4 Meyer lemon) that would be delightfully tart next to the banana snacks (made with a bit of orange juice) with would naturally be very sweet.

Homemade Gummy Hearts- sugar free and packed with fresh fruit from Go Running, Mama!

The process is insanely simple- simmer the fruit, juice, and -in the case of the strawberry snacks- local honey until very soft.  We opted for local honey in place of the stevia in Taralyn’s recipe for two reasons: a) anything to help with Cedar Fever in the ATX, and b) the jury is still out on stevia in this household.

The simmer process was slightly longer with the strawberries than the bananas, of course.

Homemade Gummy Hearts- sugar free and packed with fresh fruit from Go Running, Mama!

Once the fruit is softened, you pop the mixture into a blender and puree until smooth.  Remove the blender cap to allow the mixture to cool slightly and then add the gelatin and process in the blender once again.

Homemade Gummy Hearts- sugar free and packed with fresh fruit from Go Running, Mama!

Pour the mixture into a pan and pop into the fridge to cool for an hour.  The size of the pan you use for cooling with dictate the width of your gummy treats.  I didn’t want ours to turn out too thin, so I chose containers that would give us thicker treats.  The strawberry recipe also makes roughly double the treats of the banana which I feel is an ideal balance of tart to sweet when tossed together!  Baby Bird strongly prefers the strawberry citrus flavor as she tends to enjoy more complex flavor profiles in her foods.

Homemade Gummy Hearts- sugar free and packed with fresh fruit from Go Running, Mama!

For nice tiny hearts, I used a fondant cutter to cut our shapes.  Once you cut the shape, you have to give it a little jiggle to detach it from the bottom of the pan and it will lift up easily as you remove the cutter.

Homemade Gummy Hearts- sugar free and packed with fresh fruit from Go Running, Mama!

Needless to say, they were a huge it!  It was tough to snatch pictures of them before they disappeared.  Baby Bird figured I had momentarily lost my mind because I was allowing fruit snack consumption without even the slightest frown on my face and she was determined to exploit what she assumed was a lapse in judgement as long as possible.

The simmer process was slightly longer with the strawberries than the bananas, of course.

The texture is nice a firm- far more similar to an actual gummy bear than a jello jiggler- which is awesome.  Before we tried these, I was a little afraid that they would be more like amped up jigglers.  They have also given me high hopes that I can tweak this recipe to make homemade energy gels for our long runs.  Heck, if I can figure that out I may be able to add another distance race to my schedule from all the savings!

Now if I can only figure out how to make homemade stickers that don’t require Mommy’s nails or a putty knife to remove them from the tile…

Homemade Gummy Hearts- sugar free and packed with fresh fruit from Go Running, Mama!

Strawberry Citrus Gummy Hearts

Ingredients

  • 1 cup fresh citrus juice (at least 1/2 cup orange juice + additional citrus juice of your choosing to create 1 cup)
  • 2 cups diced strawberries
  • 1 tbs local honey
  • 5 packets of unflavored gelatin

Directions: Combine juice, fruit, and honey in a small pan and bring to a simmer.  Simmer until strawberries are very soft.

Pour mixture into blender and puree until smooth.  Remove lid from blender and allow to cool for 5 minutes.  Once slightly cooled, add gelatin packets and process in blender once more.

Pour into a pan (the size of the pan you select with affect the thickness of your gummy treats- I chose 8×8) and place in fridge to set for at least one hour.

Remove from refrigerator and cut into shapes.

Makes 200+ gummy hearts (will vary based on size of pan and size of shapes)

Banana Gummy Hearts

Ingredients

  • 2 ripe bananas
  • 1/4 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
  • 2 packets of unflavored gelatin

Directions:

Combine juice and banana in a small bowl.  Mash banana with a fork and stir to combine with juice.  Add mixture to a small pan to simmer for 3-5 minutes until banana is very soft and slightly golden in color.

Pour mixture into blender and puree until smooth.  Remove lid from blender and allow to cool for 5 minutes.  Once slightly cooled, add gelatin packets and process in blender once more.

Pour into a pan (the size of the pan you select with affect the thickness of your gummy treats- I chose 8×8) and place in fridge to set for at least one hour.

Remove from refrigerator and cut into shapes.

Makes 75+ gummy hearts (will vary based on size of pan and size of shapes)

*These can easily be toted as lunch bag or diaper bag snacks, but since these are made with fresh fruit and no preservatives, store in the fridge until you pack them up to send as a treat.

Calm Down Cookies: Chamomile Shortbread Buttons with Orange Blossom Glaze

14 Aug Go Running, Mama!- Calm Down Cookies: Chamomile Shortbread Buttons with Orange Blossom Glaze

Go Running, Mama!- Calm Down Cookies: Chamomile Shortbread Buttons with Orange Blossom Glaze

This week is choreography camp at the dance studio which means every studio room is jam packed with company dancers from 9 am until 4 pm.  The energy is awesome and Baby Bird was beside herself with excitement when she got to step in and watch the big girls do their dances.  But bless our creative directors’ hearts… they are working like mad women!

Yesterday when we came home from Baby Bird’s combo class, she mentioned that she wanted to make a treat for her favorite instructor, whom she had seen running room from room that morning working on numbers for multiple company categories, to “help her feel better” (I can’t say enough about how much I love that little one’s kindness of spirit) so I suggested we make some Calm Down Cookies!

These little shortbread buttons are delicately scented both from the chamomile and orange blossom water and are the perfect conclusion to a hectic day.  We brought a batch up to the studio last night and I’m hoping Baby Bird’s favorite teacher found a moment to unwind with a cup of hot tea and a cookie or two… or twelve- dancers burn serious calories!

Go Running, Mama!- Calm Down Cookies: Chamomile Shortbread Buttons with Orange Blossom Glaze

Calm Down Cookies- Chamomile Shortbread Buttons with Orange Blossom Glaze

For Cookies:

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 5 high quality chamomile teabags
  • 3/4 tsp coarse salt
  • 2 sticks butter, room temperature
  • 1/2 c confectioner’s sugar
  • 1/2 c granulated sugar
  • 1/2 tsp orange blossom water

For Glaze:

  • 1 c confectioner’s sugar
  • 1 tbs local honey
  • 2 tbs almond milk plus more if needed
  • 1/4 tsp orange blossom water
  • pinch of fine salt

Directions: Empty four tea bags into food processor or burr grinder.  Grind contents until they are very fine.

Go Running, Mama!- Calm Down Cookies: Chamomile Shortbread Buttons with Orange Blossom Glaze

In a mixing bowl, whisk flour and salt.  Using a fine sieve, sift ground tea leaves into bowl and whisk contents together.  Set aside.

Go Running, Mama!- Calm Down Cookies: Chamomile Shortbread Buttons with Orange Blossom Glaze

Using an electric mixer, beat butter, confectioner’s sugar, and orange blossom water in a mixing bowl on medium speed until pale and fluffy.  Reduce speed and add flour mixture in two additions until just combined.

Empty remaining tea bag into food processor of burr grinder.  Grind contents until they are very fine.  In a small bowl, whisk ground tea leaves and granulated sugar together.

Divide dough in half, placing each half on a sheet of parchment paper.  Roll each half into a log about2 inches in diameter.  Sprinkle half of the granulated sugar mixture over each log and roll again to coat the exterior of each log with the granulated sugar.

Wrap each log in parchment paper and freeze for one hour.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Remove a log from the freezer and slice cookies 1/2 inch thick.  Place on a baking sheet lined in parchment paper about one inch apart.  Bake for 13-15 minutes until just beginning to brown on the edges.  Remove to cooling rack positioned over parchment immediately.

While cookies are baking, whisk almond milk, honey, and orange blossom water in a shallow mixing bowl to make glaze.  Whisk in the confectioner’s sugar in three additions and mix until smooth.

Go Running, Mama!- Calm Down Cookies: Chamomile Shortbread Buttons with Orange Blossom Glaze

While cookies are still warm, dunk the tops in glaze and return them to the cooling rack to set.  If  glaze thickens, thin with more almond milk and whisk until smooth.

Makes about 36 cookies.

Go Running, Mama!- Calm Down Cookies: Chamomile Shortbread Buttons with Orange Blossom Glaze

Get to Know Your Grains: Quinoa (Cinnamon Quinoa Lunchbox Bars)

12 Aug Go Running, Mama!- Cinnamon Quinoa Lunchbox Bars; clean, healthy snack or breakfast on the go

About eight years ago I was exposed to quinoa at Walt Disney World while staying at Animal Kingdom Lodge.  Boma, the African buffet restaurant on property, served a hot quinoa breakfast porridge every morning and even without knowing its nutritional prowress I found it to be a delightfully tasty alternative to normal breakfast cereals.  I knew I just had to have it as a morning meal option in my own home.  Anyone who has been to WDW knows that they do customer service right so when I asked about how it was prepared, the chef provided me with the preparation method and recipe.

When I returned home, I did a little research on this mystery grain and quickly learned that it was quite the super grain.  Along with preparing quinoa in the mornings I started seeking out other ways to enjoy it.  At that point I was living in Houston and the fabulous Monica Pop would sell a red quinoa salad (that I have often tried to copy, yet have never managed to get quite right) at the T’afia farmers market that became a common staple for me.  I also started making a quinoa and flax granola occasionally that- looking back- seemed very forward thinking despite the fact that my friends made fun of me for taking time to home make a seedy little granola.  It’s probably one of the biggest contributors to my crunchy hippie reputation amongst my NFL dance friends.

By now I think most everyone is familiar with quinoa and has used it at least once in their kitchen- even if it’s simply been in place of rice as a side dish.  And however you might use it, you’re doing your health some serious favors.  Nutritional evaluations of quinoa lead most dietitians to classify it as a complete protein.  It’s high in antioxidants, phytonutrients and the flavonoids quercetin and kaempherol- higher, in fact, than the celebrated cranberry.  It contains eight essential amino acids yet is low in fat.  It is gluten free.  It’s easy to prepare and store for midweek meals.  No wonder it’s considered the “Mother Grain.”

To be frank, practically the only way you can go wrong with quinoa is to pronounce it phonetically.  Stop with the “kwin-oh-uh”… it pronounced “Keen-wah.”

Say it with me- “Keeeeeen-waaaah.”

Now go eat some!

Nutritional Information (1/2 c prepared quinoa)-

  • Calories- 111
  • Total Fat- 4 g
  • Sodium- 7 mg
  • Carbohydrates- 19.5 g
  • Fiber- 2.5 g
  • Protein- 4 g
  • Vitamin E- .6 mg
  • Thiamin- .1 mg
  • Riboflavin- .1 mg
  • Niacin- .4 mg
  • Vitamin B6- .1 mg
  • Folate- 37.5 mcg
  • Calcium- 16 mg
  • Iron- 1.4 mg
  • Magnesium- 59 mg
  • Phosphorus- 140.5 mg
  • Zinc- 1 mg

Go Running, Mama!- Cinnamon Quinoa Lunchbox Bars; clean, healthy snack or breakfast on the go

These are perfect for my toddler’s snack during dance camp because they pack a protein punch!  If you’re making them for adults, up the flavor factor by tossing in some additional baking spices.  You can also toss in raisins to make them more similar to traditional granola bars for bigger kiddos.

Cinnamon Quinoa Lunchbox Bars

  • 2 1/2 c quinoa, prepared and at room temperature
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tbs flax meal
  • 6 tbs water
  • 1/3 c almond milk (I’m crazy for Califia Farms)
  • 1/3 c grade B maple syrup
  • 1 tbs local honey
  • 1 tbs cinnamon (ceylon is the best bet for use in this quantity)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • pinch of salt

Directions: Preheat oven to 370 degrees F.

Line an 8×8 baking dish with parchment paper.

In a small mise en place bowl, mix flax meal with water and allow to congeal.

In a mixing bowl, whisk eggs and flax meal mixture.  Reserving quinoa, add remaining ingredients and whisk once again.

Add quinoa and mix well to combine.

Pour into parchment lined baking dish and bake for 25 minutes.

Allow to cool 10 minutes in pan before removing on parchment to a cooling rack.

Once completely cool, cut in  a 2 inch grid to create 16 bars.

Unjunked Blueberry “Pep” Tarts with Coconut-Macadamia Nut Butter and Maple Glaze

17 Jul Go Running Mama- Unjunked Blueberry "Pep" Tart with Coconut-Macadamia Nut Butter and Maple Glaze

When it comes to planning to ensure our nutritional needs are met in this household, I deal with considerable inner conflict- As an active mom with an equally active husband and daughter I want to live by my inborn desire to graph, chart, and color coordinate our weekly menu guaranteeing all our nutritional needs are fully met and no food will go to waste:  As a hippie momster locavore foodie I want to live only by what’s freshest and most exciting, ingredients that speak to me at a moments notice or flavor combinations that engage my senses most fully when they are accidental discoveries.  Though it would probably be easiest on my sanity if I took a hardline stance and invested fully in only nurturing my type-A side, the hippie drippy lala in me seems to be guiding our family palate this summer to enjoy what the universe is offering at a moments notice.  Happily, I’m learning that the universe is just as opposed to wasting food as serious Jenn.  I’m also learning that the universe has some killer ideas about snacking awesomeness!

While in WIlliams Sonoma recently, I stumbled upon a Toaster Pastry Press that was on sale for $2.50.  No, I didn’t put the decimal in the wrong place- that is actually $2.50!  Obviously the universe was insisting I purchase that press because A) I love embarking on fun food adventures that my toddler can join in as well, and B) anytime anything is marked down to $2.50 in Williams Sonoma you would be completely crazy not to purchase it!  I set it aside knowing it would be just perfect for a rainy day kitchen adventure sometime.

Fast forward to the past 48 hours in Austin where, tut tut, it’s looked like rain (hint one…).  The arrival of our weekly CSA box provided a most welcomed diversion for a homebound toddler who was delighted to discover a pint of local blueberries inside.  “These are good for making!” she declared (hint two…).  As I started running through recipes in my mind to see what clever, toddler-friendly item I could conjure I remembered the local whole wheat flour we had received last week and the super duper exciting pastry press.  Okay, Universe… I give in!  Toaster pastries it is!

Go Running Mama- Unjunked Blueberry "Pep" Tart with Coconut-Macadamia Nut Butter and Maple Glaze

My little one has never had a pop-tart-esque pastry before, so I didn’t really have to “compete” with a familiar comfort item but I’m not one to try to duplicate icky food by making more nutritious versions of ickiness.  What’s the point of that?  It just disappoints those who find the original comforting and doesn’t add anything to the party for those who want a really tasty snack instead of a copycat of bland and dissatisfying comfort food.  My daughter is a big fan of graham crackers, so I decided to tweak our homemade graham cracker recipe for the dough.

Go Running Mama- Unjunked Blueberry "Pep" Tart with Coconut-Macadamia Nut Butter and Maple Glaze

We obviously had to use the blueberries for the filling, so I whipped up the same honey-sweetened reduction I use for homemade fruit yogurt.  I also remembered I had some leftover coconut-macadamia nut butter I made this weekend to serve dolloped on top of a tropical fruit salad that would make a lovely addition.

The end result?  Totally stellar yumminess brushed with maple syrup.  I’m not sure there will be any left for breakfast!

My daughter is obsessed.  As she frantically signed “more” to me, her mouth filled with the final bite of her pastry, I made the mistake of colling them Pop Tarts.

“More Pep Tart, peeeease,” she pleaded.

More Pep Tarts it is, Dear.

Go Running Mama- Unjunked Blueberry "Pep" Tart with Coconut-Macadamia Nut Butter and Maple Glaze

Unjunked Blueberry “Pep” Tarts with Coconut-Macadamia Nut Butter and Maple Glaze

  • Coconut-Macadamia Nut Butter (recipe below)
  • 1 1/2 c blueberries
  • 3 tbs local honey
  • 2 tbs water
  • 1/2 tsp almond extract
  • 3 1/3 c whole wheat flour
  • 1/3 c wheat germ
  • 1 scant tsp coarse salt
  • 4 tbs grade B maple syrup
  • 2 tbs almond milk
  • 8 tbs olive oil
  • 3 tsp vanilla
  • 3/4 tsp cinnamon

To make blueberry filling:

In a small saucepan, heat blueberries, honey, water, and almond extract over medium-high heat and bring to boil. Stir frequently and simmer to reduce by half using a wooden spoon to crush berries that do not pop on their own.  Reduce heat to medium if necessary.  Once reduced, remove pan from heat to thicken.

To make pastry dough:

Add flour, wheat germ, salt, and cinnamon to a mixing bowl and whisk to incorporate.   In a separate bowl, combine maple syrup, almond milk, olive oil, and vanilla.  Mix well to combine.  Make a well in the dry ingredients.  Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix until well combined.  Mixture will be crumbly.  Turn out onto a baking pan lined with parchment and roll dough into a rectangle to cover baking sheet about 1/8 inch thick.  Chill at least 30 minutes.

To assemble “pep” tarts:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

If using a toaster pastry press, cut dough according to press instructions.  If using a pastry or pizza wheel, cut dough into 3×4 inch rectangles.  In the center of every other square, place 1 1/2 tsp coconut-macadamia nut butter and 1 1/2 tsp of blueberry filling.  Cover with dough and crimp edges with pastry press or fork tines.  Chill for at least 10 minutes.

Bake in oven for 14-16 minutes.  Using a pastry brush, glaze each pastry with grade B maple syrup immediately after removing pan from the oven.  Allow to cool on pan for five minutes before transferring to cooling rack.

Makes 6 pastries

Coconut-Macadamia Nut Butter

  • 4 c shredded coconut
  • 2/3 c raw macadamia nuts
  • 1 tbs grade B maple syrup
  • coconut oil (to suit personal texture preference)

Directions: Add first three ingredients to food processor and process for 10 minutes.  Scrape sides of bowl and check consistency of butter (should be similar to nut butter, although slightly drier).  Continue to process if needed.  Add coconut oil by the teaspoon is texture and consistency is to dry for your liking and you desire more spreadability at room temperature.  Store in an airtight jar.