Thursday, January 5, 2017

Health & Happiness, One Bite at a Time!


It's a new year! A time for taking stock of our lives, and figuring out how to create the change we want for ourselves and our families. Food tends to be a big player in New Year's resolutions. But how do we craft resolutions and goals that are realistic and sustainable? Ones that won't be distant memories by Valentine's Day?

I had the privilege of appearing on WGN on New Year's Day to share a few of our favorite recipes at The Kids' Table: Easy Being Green Dip, Lucky New Year's Soup & Chocolate Cupcakes with Buttercream and Raspberry Sprinkles. These recipes align well with our philosophy - that food should be good. It should taste good, and we should feel good about eating it.

What makes you feel good about your food? Is it eating local? Label-reading? Making more from scratch? Watching your sugar intake? Buying organic? Eating as a family? Cooking with your kids? Upping your veggies? Whatever your food-related wishes for 2017, we hope these recipes can help you in your journey. Here's to your health & happiness - one bite at a time!

Check out our WGN Feature!

Easy Being Green Dip

A surefire crowd pleaser, this dip tastes like a cross between French Onion Dip and Spinach Artichoke Dip. It's packed with dark leafy greens, and loads of protein from its Greek-style yogurt base.

We made some improvements to this long-time favorite of ours:  Easy Being Green Dip

Lucky New Year's Soup

This quick, easy and delicious soup is belly-warming, chock full of veggies and fiber, and completely plant-based. A little smoked paprika adds the depth of flavor that many rely on ham hocks for.

Flashback to New Year's 2016 for the recipe:  Lucky New Year's Soup

Chocolate Cake with Buttercream & Raspberries Sprinkles

I love the ooey gooey element from the chocolate chips - technically making it a double chocolate cake. It may sound (and taste) decadent, but you can feel pretty good about eating it. After all, this cake gets some its sweetness from applesauce and uses half whole wheat flour!

You can try using another fruit or sweeter veggie puree instead of applesauce. Think roasted butternut squash or pie pumpkin, banana, or even roasted beets! Just make sure to blend or mash well, and add a little water if needed to get the consistency of applesauce.

Ingredients
For cupcakes
1 egg
1 cup unsweetened applesauce
½ cup sugar
¼ cup canola or grapeseed oil
1 tsp vanilla extract
3 T unsweetened cocoa powder
1 tsp baking soda
½ cup whole wheat flour
½ cup all-purpose flour
Heaping 1/3 cup chocolate chips

For topping
1 stick butter, softened*
4 oz cream cheese, softened*
½ cup powdered sugar
½ tsp vanilla extract
Crushed dehydrated raspberries for sprinkling

Directions
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 12-cup muffin pan with nonstick spray and set aside.

Crack egg into a mixing bowl. Whisk well to combine yolk and white. Add applesauce, sugar, oil and vanilla and whisk well. Whisk in cocoa powder and baking soda. Add flours and whisk just enough to make them disappear into the batter. Fold in chocolate chips.

With a spatula, scrape batter into prepared muffin pan. Bake until a cake tester or toothpick comes out clean, about 15-17 minutes. Let cool 10 minutes. Carefully pop muffins out of muffin pan. Let cool completely on a rack. 

While cupcakes are baking/cooling, make your frosting. Combine softened butter and cream cheese in your mixing bowl and whisk until well blended. (If you’d prefer, you can use an electric hand mixer or stand mixer.) Sift powdered sugar over the mixture. Use a flour sifter, or a small fine-mesh strainer and gently push powdered sugar through it with a spoon. Add vanilla. Whisk until frosting is smooth and creamy.

Frost with cupcakes and sprinkle with crushed dehydrated raspberries.

--> *Ideally, the butter and cream cheese should be left out at room temperature to soften (1-1 ½ hours). If you're in a pinch, you can do it in the microwave. Just make sure to use a defrost or low power setting so that they soften without melting.
Makes 12 cupcakes

What Kids Can Do (with appropriate tools & adult supervision)
*Grease pan
*Crack & whisk egg
*Measure cake & frosting ingredients
*Mix batter
*Fold in chocolate chips
*Scrape batter into muffin pan
*Sift powdered sugar
*Whisk frosting
*Frost & decorate cake
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1 comment:

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