Bacio and Macardalm Bars

September 22, 2013

These bars are alot like Lara bars and easy to adapt to whatever flavors you like and what you have in your pantry.  I adapted these recipes from

Both recipes can be easily doubled.

Bacio Bars (in honor of Jora who I imagine to be eating Bacio Gelato on a daily basis!)

1 cup hazelnut meal
1 cup dates (soaked if necessary to soften)
1 Tbsp cocoa powder
3/4 tsp good quality salt
2 oz chopped dark chocolate
1 oz raw cacoa nibs
can add 1/8 tsp scant espresso powder
can add a dash of cinnamon or other spices
can add whole nuts at the end if you want some chunks

Add dates to a food processor and pulse until small bits remain.

Add cocoa powder, salt, chopped chocolate, espresso and spices if using.  Mix until well incorporated.

Add more dates while mixing if necessary if mixture is too dry.  You know it is the right texture when you gather a bit in your fingers and it easily forms a ball.

Add cocoa nibs and whole nuts if using and pulse briefly to give some crunch to your bar.

Press into a small flat pan with your fingers or roll with a rolling pin, or flatten with another pan of equal size.  Cut into bars.  Can be refrigerated or wrapped individually and frozen.  Enjoy!

Macardalm Bars (My funny, made-up name for Macadamia, Cardamom, and Almond Bars)

9 mejdool dates
1 cup raw almonds
1 cup raw Macadamia nuts
3/4 tsp good quality salt
2 tsp vanilla
1 tsp or more Cardamom
can add whole nuts at the end if you want some chunks 

Add dates to a food processor and pulse until small bits remain.

Add nuts, salt, vanilla, and cardamom.  Mix until well incorporated.

Add more dates while mixing if necessary if mixture is too dry.  You know it is the right texture when you gather a bit in your fingers and it easily forms a ball.

Adjust seasonings as necessary.  Can add more nuts and pulse briefly if you wants some crunch.

Press into a small flat pan with your fingers or roll with a rolling pin, or flatten with another pan of equal size.  Cut into bars.  Can be refrigerated or wrapped individually and frozen.  Enjoy!

Nut Butter

September 17, 2013

Nut Butter from lyann kemal on Vimeo.

makes 4 
14oz(2boxes)       mix nuts, salted and roasted
1/2 cup                  sunflowers
1/4 cup                  chia seeds
1/4 cup                  flax seeds, whole

  • In a food processor add all nuts and sunflower seeds.
  • Blend till it looks like fine sand. Scrape sides of bowl and don't forget the bottom.
  • Blend again until the mixture is forming a ball. Stop and scrape again. 
  • Turn on processor till the butter starts to break down and looks like peanut butter. 
  • NOTE: your butter will start to heat and smoke, stop machine, scrape the sides, give the machine a little break. 
  • Once it is the consistence you like add the chia and flax seeds. Mix till the seeds are combined. 
  • Add to jar(s). 
A recipe: When I make nut butter I usually make these pancakes for the family. 

Coconut Dulce de Leche

April 30, 2013

I used this recipe on Bon Appétit with a couple of tweaks. I haven't been able to taste it yet because I have been on a month long cleanse. I hear it's good.

Coconut Dulce de Leche
2 14-ounce cans unsweetened coconut milk ( I like Whole Foods Brand )
1 ¼ cups organic coconut sugar
½-⅔ t coarse kosher salt ( I used Maldon )

Whisk coconut milk, sugar, and coarse salt in heavy large skillet over medium heat until sugar dissolves. Increase heat to medium-high and boil until mixture is reduced to 2 1/2 cups, stirring occasionally, about 20 minutes. Transfer sauce to small jars. Cool completely, then cover sauce and chill. Can be made 1 month ahead. Keep chilled.

image via: the lovely blake

Lemon Ginger Dressing + More...

April 17, 2013

Lemon-Ginger dressing 
1/4 C olive oil
lemon, juice
1 tsp lemon zest or 1 inch slice lemon skin
1 carrot or bell pepper (optional)
2 Tb nama shoyu (or tamari, shoyu)
1 inch piece of ginger
1 garlic clove
1/2 - 3/4 C raw cashews (depending on how thick you'd like your dressing)

1/2 C water
1 Tb Dijon mustard
1/2 tsp dry mustard powder
1/4 tsp salt

-Blend all ingredients together in a high powered blender such as a Vitamix. Salt more to preference.  Delicious on everything - grains, salads, any veggie, etc.  Wonderful on a kale salad with mango, red bell, and grated carrot.

Strawberry Fruit Leathers: I follow this recipe but keep the strawberry seeds.  I did 5 pints of berries + 2 TB honey and that was plenty sweet for my kids:

Anytime Bars

April 15, 2013

Again, a concept favorite.  So easy and nutritious and great to pop into the lunchbox!  These come out crunchy/chewy/sticky depending on how long and hot you boil the sweetener.  If they are too sticky, just keep them in the fridge.  The rice crispies make them...well...crispy!  You could try another cereal too.  Customize these bars however you like.  Next time I plan to add some spices to them - cardamom and coriander maybe?  Cinnamon is always a pleaser!  Try some cayenne for a little kick.  To make it more Lara Bar-like, you would swap dates for the sweetener, leave out the rice crispies, throw everything into the Vitamix and voila!

These were adapted from a recipe here -

Anytime Bars
- 1 cup nut butter
- 1 cup liquid sweetener (I like rice syrup and maple syrup.  Honey is also good.  When I used agave they were super-sweet!)
- 1 1/2 cups or more nuts and/or seeds (almonds, pecans, walnuts, macs, brazils, sunflower, sesame, pumpkin, etc.)  I used brazil nuts, macadamia nuts, sunflower seeds and pumpkin seeds.
- 1 cup unsulphured dried fruit (cherries, cranberries, blueberries, apricots, pineapple, coconut, Elizabeth's homemade raisins, figs, etc.)  I used tart fruit such as cherries, cranberries, and then a few blueberries for variety.
- 2-4 cups GF brown rice crispy cereal.  I used unsweetened Erewhon Organic Crispie Brown Rice.
- 1/2 teaspoon or more salt - to your taste (I like a little hint of salt in my sweet treats.)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- spices if you like

Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.

Pulse nuts and seeds in a food processor to coarsely chop.

Pulse dried fruit in a food processor to coarsely chop.

In a LARGE pot, heat liquid sweetener over medium low heat until boiling.  Stir often to prevent scorching and to keep the heat evenly distributed.

Stir in nut butter and heat until it bubbles.  Cook for about 1 more minute.

Stir in salt and vanilla.

Use a large spatula to mix in nuts, dried fruit and cereal.  Coat all ingredients well.

Scrape mixture on to the parchment line baking sheet.  Place a piece of parchment paper over the top and press down.  Use a rolling pin to smooth the top of the mixture and spread it evenly on the sheet using the sides of the baking sheet to help you get an even thickness to the bar.  Shape the sides if you like.

Place covered in refrigerator for about 2 hours before cutting.  Wrap each bar and store in a covered container in the fridge.


Secret Chocolate Truffles

April 14, 2013

I adapted this recipe from OMG! That's Allergy Free? blog.  A true nutrient-dense treat!  They are even better when dipped in bittersweet chocolate!  Make sure they are well-chilled to before rolling.  They freeze well too.

The recipe is written as more of a concept than specific amounts - adjust to your taste...

1 cup baked Garnet or Jewel Sweet Potato/Yam puree
3 rounded tablespoons Cacao powder + extra for coating
3 Tablespoons Raw Honey or Maple Syrup (Or, you could use 3 dates, which would thicken the truffle even better - be sure to soak if too dry.)
1 Tablespoon Extra Virgin Coconut Oil
1 teaspoon high quality vanilla
1/8 teaspoon salt
Cinnamon/Cardamom/chili - whatever spice you feel like adding

(If you have a VitaMix, no need to sieve or mash - just throw it all in together.  If using a food processor, you make need to sieve the potatoes and skin/pre-mash the dates.)

Bake sweet potatoes in a covered baking dish at 350 degrees until very soft.  Cool slightly and remove skins. 

Combine all ingredients and mix until very smooth. Taste, adjust flavors and remix.

Cover and refrigerate at least 2 hours or until quite firm.  Scoop out 1 teaspoon truffle mixture, form into a ball, roll in cocoa powder or finely chopped nuts.  Refrigerate in an airtight container.

These will last about 2 weeks in the refrigerator.

Simple Lemon Rosemary Salt

April 10, 2013

Nothing fancy over here. 
Really simple: zest lemons, sprigs of rosemary and salt. I used Hawaiian salt and coarse sea salt. Bottles from World Market.

Romesco Sauce

Piquillo peppers are traditionally used in Romesco Sauce, but I didn't have access to any. If you have some on hand use them instead of the roasted red peppers I used. The sauce will be slightly sweeter.

I like to use Romesco on almost anything. It's kind of like a Spanish pesto. When I make it I will go crazy trying it on stuff. I would say it's best on roasted potatoes or cauliflower, scrambled eggs, fish, chicken, pork and sandwiches. If you discover a new way to use it share it on here. I would love to know.

Romesco Sauce from Salad for Dinner (great cookbook)

1 (12-ounce) jar piquillo peppers or roasted red bell peppers, drained
1/2 cup almonds, toasted
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
2-3 garlic cloves
2 teaspoons of smoked paprika
1/2 teaspoon of kosher salt

Toast the almonds dry in a heavy pan until dark brown and fragrant .

Purée all the ingredients in a blender until smooth. Season with additional salt to taste. Will keep for a week or slightly longer in the refrigerator.

Tangerine Marmalade

February 10, 2013

The tree outside my kitchen window was overflowing with tangerines, so I decided to finally try making tangerine marmalade.  It was so easy and tasted so great, I know I'll be making it every long as our tree keeps producing.  :-)

Tangerine Marmalade

8 c. sliced tangerines (halved and seeded)
4 c. water
1 kg sugar (about 5 cups)
4-5 meyer lemons, halved

Combine tangerines, sugar and water in a large pot.  Squeeze lemon juice into the pot and then add the used lemon halves.  Bring to a boil and let the marmalade cook away for about 30 minutes, then reduce heat to medium and continue boiling until the mixture is thickened (about 15-20 minutes more).  The mixture will continue to thicken as it cools.  Press the lemon skins to release the natural pectin and then remove the halves from the pot.

I put my batch of marmalade in jars and stuck them in the refrigerator, but you could also, obviously, preserve them.

(By the way, I highly recommend spreading this marmalade on Smitten Kitchen's Cream Biscuits!)

{our generous tree}

GAPs Ketchup and a really good Probiotic Apple Relish

February 8, 2013

So I don't have photos of the recipe I brought and the other recipe I wanted to bring - but I will share both here.  For those that attended the first Pantry Party, I promise the ketchup will turn out better than the one you took home if you follow the proportions below!

Word to the wise: I quadrupled the Ketchup recipe to accomodate our numbers and, despite cooking it ALL DAY, it didn't reduce in time and I ended up with 20+ jars of something more akin to cocktail sauce.

Oh well. Everyone was a good sport.

GAPs Ketchup (from Internal Bliss - the GAPs cookbook)

In a small saucepan, combine 1/2 C White Vinegar with 5 whole Cloves, 1 Bay Leaf, 1 Cinnamon Stick, 1/4 tsp whole Allspice, and 1/4 tsp Celery Seeds.  Simmer on low for 30 minutes.

Meanwhile, in a large pot combine 2 lbs Tomatoes (roughly chopped or crushed by hand), 1 Onion chopped, 1 1/2 tsp Salt and 2 cloves Garlic minced.  Cook on medium-low heat until onions are very soft ~ 40 min.

Strain spices out of the vinegar and add the infused vinegar to the tomatoes and stir.  Puree in a blender or with a stick blender right in the pot.

Heat the sauce to reduce to desired thickness (about 2 hrs).

Add 1/4 C Honey to sweeten - taste and adjust vinegar, salt and honey as desired.

Apple Chutney (from
*I really wanted to bring this but ran out of time.  It's so yummy and good for your gut!

Apples, peeled and chopped; to fill a quart jar (6 or so)
Juice of 2 lemons
2 Tbl honey
1/2 cup raisins*
2 inches hot chili pepper, fresh and de-seeded (I use a jalapeno)
1 tsp fennel seeds

Mix all ingredients, place in large jar.  Pack gently to start to release the juices.  If needed, add filtered water to cover the fruit.  Cover and leave at room temperature for 2 days, transferring to the fridge for up to 2 months.

Discard the chili pepper after 2 days, before it goes into the fridge.

*I dehydrate my excess CSA grapes and can attest that homemade raisins are in a class by themselves.  I HATED the little red box my mother always packed in my school lunches.  I didn't even think I liked raisins until I started making them myself in an effort to not let a glut of produce go to waste.  Anyway, I don't dehydrate all the juice out of them, just until they're still plump, and then I store them in the fridge.  Super-sweet and juicy.


January 22, 2013

I made this butterscotch from Smitten Kitchen blog. The only difference is I cooked my for about 20 minutes.

Lemon Curd

January 21, 2013

This lemon curd has vanilla beans and paired with gluten free banana bread. 

adapted from the art of preserving

1/2 cup lemon juice, freshly squeezed, 2 to 3 lemons
zest of 2 to 3 lemons
1/4 cup sugar
3 eggs
1/2 cup butter, cut into small cubes
1/2 tsp  flakey salt, Salt Farm #04 Cyprus 
1 vanilla bean, opened and scraped (optional)

  • In a small heavy pan add the lemon juice, sugar and eggs. Mix to combine, using a whisk.
  • Turn stove on to medium heat. Keep stirring and add 2 pieces of butter at a time. 
  • Once the butter is melted add 2 more butter pieces while stirring. Watch this step very carefully. It can curdle very quickly.
  • Repeat till all the butter is in the pan and the liquid has thicken. It should cover the back of a wooden spoon. 
  • Stain the lemon curd through a sieve.  
  • In the lemon curd add the salt, and vanilla.
  • Add them to little pots to give away or eat right then and there! 

Palm Springs Style Granola

January 19, 2013

Makes about 9 cups


6 cups rolled oats 
2 cups raw sliced or slivered almonds
1 cup dried unsweetened coconut
1 cup sesame seeds
1 cup raw pumpkin seeds
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon, or to taste
Generous dash of sea salt
½ cup maple syrup
¼ cup olive oil
½ cup of coconut oil
1 cup dates, chopped and pitted


Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl, combine oats, nuts and seeds, coconut, cinnamon, and salt.

On the stove in a small pot combine the sweetener and oil and bring to a boil. Immediately remove from heat and add to the oat mixture.

Place on a sheet pan lined with parchment paper and put in oven. Bake for 30 minutes or a little longer, stirring frequently. Be careful the edges do not burn.

Remove from oven and add the dates. Cool. Store in a sealed container.

Grain Free, Gaps Friendly Granola

January 17, 2013

I brought two types of Granola to our pantry party this past week. I will post both recipes.

2 cups of raw sunflower seeds
2 cups of raw walnuts
2 cups of raw almonds (sliced, whole or a mix of the two)
1 cup of sesame seeds
1 cup of raw pumpkin seeds
1 cup of raw shredded coconut
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon, or to taste
½ teaspoon ground ginger
Generous dash of sea salt
1/2 cup maple syrup
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/4 cup unrefined coconut oil

Mix everything but the maple syrup and oils. Gently heat the maple syrup and oils on stove top to melt the coconut oil. Pour syrup/oil mixture over the mixed dry ingredients. Spread out on cookie sheet lined with parchment and put in a 150 degree oven for 6-12 hours. Stirring every hour or so.

* You could use crystalized ginger or fresh ginger. Also you don't have to cook on such a low heat. You can do it at 350 degrees for 30 minutes. Stirring every 10 minutes or so.