Peanut Butter Banana Waffles

Guys,

I decided to give my waffle iron another shot. I was all ready to break up with it after my chocolate banana waffles were a fail (the batter was too moist for well...anything. And I should've just added more flour, but my brain doesn't work that well at 5 in the morning.

So on Sunday, I stayed home from church and gave it another try. And this time, it was a delicious peanut buttery success! I ate four between Sunday and Monday and left the remaining three for my mum.

So the base for these waffles is filled with plenty of banana, along with a little bit of spice and some creamy dreamy peanut butter. The peanut butter taste is pretty prominent, while the banana is more of a subtle background thing.

They aren’t overly sweet, which is exactly how I like them because that means … more toppings!! I just wish I had some granola to crumble and use as a topping for these waffles! But plain old syrup with a side of fruit had to suffice.

 

PEANUT BUTTER BANANA WAFFLES

INGREDIENTS

For the waffles:

  • 1 ¼ cups all-purpose flour (if you don't have whole wheat flour, just use 2 cups all purpose)

  • ½ cup white whole wheat flour

  • 2 ½ teaspoons baking powder

  • ½ teaspoon salt

  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon

  • ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg

  • 1 cup well mashed banana (about 3 medium ripe bananas)

  • 1 cup milk (I use almond milk)

  • ⅓ cup creamy peanut butter 

  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

  • ¼ cup honey

Serving ideas:

  • additional peanut butter

  • sliced bananas or other fruit

  • drizzled maple syrup or honey

  • chopped raw walnuts

  • granola

INSTRUCTIONS

  • In a large bowl, whisk together both kinds of flour, the baking powder, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg. In a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs, banana, milk, coconut oil, peanut butter, vanilla and honey. Pour the wet ingredients into the bowl with the dry ingredients and mix until combined (the batter will be a little lumpy).

  • Preheat a waffle maker. When hot, pour the recommended amount of batter into the waffle maker according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Cook until golden brown. Repeat with the remaining batter.

  • Serve with desired toppings!

Skinny Cake Batter Smoothie

How funny is it that the day after I wrote a post on how to be productive when you don’t feel like it, I’m about to tell you that I’m taking the whole day to do nothing? After the week I had, I think I deserve one day to do just do nothing. It took me hours to get that post out and not because of writer’s block, because of interruptions.

Work has been hectic this week because one of my co-workers was on vacation. It’s amazing how much harder everything is when you’re short one person (and when everyone else decides to abandon ship and leave you all by yourself for the last two hours of the day). I actually ended up working overtime (something I don’t get paid for) because there just were not enough hours in the work day. So I think I’ve earned a rest day!

I won’t do absolutely nothing today. I plan on finally unpacking (can you guys believe I still haven’t unpacked from my birthday trip?) and playing the Sims while I look for a good movie to watch considering there is no Law and Order or any kind marathon on today.

So given my devil-may-care feelings toward the day, I decided to indulge in some comfort food. But of course because I’m too lazy to chew, today’s comfort food comes in smoothie format. I know I’ve been making a lot of smoothies lately, but they’re quick, easy and satisfying. I don’t have to fuss over a hot oven in an already hot climate, and for the most part, smoothies can be rather nutritious. Including this one! Well maybe not nutritious but at least not fattening!

You know how awesome cake batters can be, but technically we’re not supposed to eat them because of salmonella and what not? Well now you can have a thick, creamy smoothie that tastes just like a Pillsbury French Vanilla Cake Batter without the guilt of calories and germs.

Cake Batter Smoothie

Ingredients

·         1/2 cup Unsweetened Vanilla Almond Milk (or milk of choice)

·         1 cup Lowfat/Nonfat Yogurt

·         1/4 cup Oat Flour (I didn’t have any so I used regular flour)

·         4 packets Truvia (or sweetener of choice; I used regular sugar)

·         1/8 tsp Salt

·         1/2 tsp Vanilla Extract

·         1/4 tsp Almond Flavor

·         All Natural Whipped Cream, for topping

·         1 tbs Rainbow Sprinkles, for topping

 

Instructions

1.      Place all the ingredients in a blender and puree for 30 seconds (add some ice if you want it super thick and frosty)

2.      Pour into a serving glass, top with the whipped cream and sprinkles, and enjoy!

I call this the never-ending smoothie. It took so long to finish, there were times when I thought I was done and it looked like the jar kept refilling. This smoothie will leave you satisfied for hours and is perfect for breakfast, lunch or dessert!

Green "Goddess" Smoothie: Day 1

A wise person once said, "Man cannot live by bread alone. He must have peanut butter."

 

You guys know that I'm a foodie at heart. I love food, I love making food, taking pictures of food, eating food (not necessarily a fan of sharing food though). So what could possibly possess me to start a detox? Considering this is my birth month, I want to look extra special! (That's not vain, right)? Over the Christmas break, I engorged on sweets, like, everyday. It made my skin break out horribly. While I got most of the breakouts under control, there's still some fine bumps just underneath the surface of my skin that you may not be able to see, but you can definitely feel. And that is no bueno! Remember my face mask attempt at clearing my skin? Well I did that again this morning as a way to attack the acne from both inside and out.

My original plan of action was to drink one for breakfast and lunch and then eat dinner. That got switched around when I remembered I can't go the whole day without eating. In fact, as I type this I'm getting heartburn. So I decided something that would be more effect (considering it's my first ever detox) would be: smoothie, lunch, smoothie. That way, I can slowly get my body used to it. I really don't know what to expect to happen, but I always plan for the worse. I didn't want to go whole heartedly into something I did limited research on. And I'll be the first to admit when I'm wrong (depends on the circumstances). But I would never lie to you guys. In fact, the only reason I picked this recipe is because you can still eat real food while drinking it. It works as either a meal replacement or as part of a meal. So that gives me hope that I actually can do this. Because the Hunger is real!

So here's how it really went down.

I was so hurt when someone brought in at least 8 plates of pancakes and sausage links and left it in our office, for OTHER PEOPLE to eat! No one offered us a single bite and the smell danced so enticingly over to my desk. But did I break? No sir! I wanted to. I really did. But I stayed strong. I'm sure you're wondering what kind of super smoothie this could be that I turned away from Pancakes!

Side Note: No one told me before hand that it would be more effective if I chopped the kale first. I definitely should've known to do that. Because I didn't, the smoothie was chunky and I do not like chunks of anything in my mouth. That's why I buy smooth and creamy peanut butter, hello! This would've been amazing had I done that first. I had to go to the cafeteria (perks of working in a school) and ask to use their strainer. I got all of the liquid out and I tried to eat the solid mix left behind but it just didn't work with my taste buds. I will definitely try this again tomorrow (probably with spinach instead of kale).

I got the recipe from CHowDivine.com. I left out the flax/chia seeds because I just don't have any. I also only had iceburg lettuce and not romaine lettuce and I used brown sugar instead of the Stevia, because if this is supposed to be an all natural smoothie, I'm not going to use a substitute or "artificial sweetner". Plus I heard Stevia tastes horribly and I am not wasting an investment. She swears that this detox smoothie does wonders for her skin, so I'll stick to this for a week, with the detox face mask every other day, and I'll give you guys my progress next week.

Green “Goddess” Smoothie Recipe


Can be a meal replacement or added to a meal. Yields 2 12 oz servings.

Ingredients
3-5 romaine lettuce leaves
1 BIG handful of baby kale
5 sprigs of parsley
1/2 large lemon or 1 small lemon
1 small red apple
1 small banana
2 TB ground flax seeds (or combination of flax and chia seeds)
1 cup of water
4-5 ice cubes
1 tsp of brown sugar (optional)
1/2″ ginger (optional)
1/2 – 1″ cucumber cylinder (optional)

Directions

  • Add romaine, kale, parsley, lemon, apple, ginger, cucumber, and water to the vitamix or blender. Close the lid tightly. Slowly turn up the variable up to 10. This should just break down the contents. It will look slightly lumpy. It should only take about 10 seconds using the variable knob for the contents to break down in a vitamix.

  • Add rest of the ingredients to the vitamix or blender. Turn the vitamix or blender on. If using a vitamix, turn the variable knob to 10, then to high. Blend on high for about 45 seconds – 1 minute until completely smooth. If you are using a different blender, it may take longer.

  • Cook’s Note*:

If you plan to drink this on a regular basis. Try to change the ingredients from time to time. For example, use spinach in place of kale, skip the banana, or use a pear in place of an apple. Using a few chunks of frozen pineapples really gives this a tropical flavor. I usually cut up 2 or 3 pineapples and freeze it in freezer bags for smoothies. I find that this smoothie is most effective (for your skin) when the banana is not used, but that will affect the taste and texture. It will be healthy either way. 

I use a Ninja Blender for this smoothie. Kale leaves will be difficult to pulverize if the blender isn’t powerful enough, and the texture of the smoothie will be less than desirable.

Don’t blend for too long. The smoothie will get warm.

If you are a newbie to green smoothies, it may be easier to drink if the consistency is thinner. You can adjust the water to make it thinner (or thicker) depending on your preference.

Are you guys thinking about detoxing? I definitely would suggest getting the facts before starting. For example, what would work best for your problem area, what's good for your budget, best times to start and how long it should last. I thought this smoothie would give me energy but I literally just finished drinking it and I am sleepy! Also, no word yet on how this will treat my stomach. I'll get back to you on that as well.


XoX,

Olivia

Christmas Cupcakes

Christmas is in the air! I'm so excited!

The tree is decorated, there's actually some presents under the tree, and even though all of my family won't be here, some of my cousins will be able to make it and as you all know, one of my best friend's is here!

So to celebrate, I decided to make some Christmas themed cupcakes!

Christmas Cupcakes

December 20, 2014

Christmas is in the air! I'm so excited!

The tree is decorated, there's actually some presents under the tree, and even though all of my family won't be here, some of my cousins will be able to make it and as you all know, one of my best friend's is here!

So to celebrate, I decided to make some Christmas themed cupcakes!

Christmas Cupcakes.jpg

These are so easy to make and personalise. To be honest, it's not much of a recipe. You can cheat by using a white cake mix to save money and ingredients. I added white chocolate chips to mine for added sweetness. It actually tasted like candy!

To make mine vegan, I skipped the eggs, and used applesauce for moist and healthier cupcakes. Once you've mixed the cake mix, separate it into three bowls. Add green food colouring to one, red food colouring to the second and leave the third one plain. Then alternate pouring the mixture into your baking cups. I used, poinsetta baking cups. They're so cute and make your cupcakes look expensive and fancy!

If you're looking for an easy to make holiday recipe, this is the one. They simply scream Christmas! If you want to get extra fancy, you can decorate it with icing and sprinkles. You're going to enjoy eating these just as much or even more than making them.

Merry Christmas!

XoX

Olivia

McCormick Eggnog Truffles

McCormick didn't provide me with the materials needed for this recipe, but this is a paid post. The opinions I share about this recipe are my own and McCormick did not tell me what to say or how to say it.

Sleigh bells ring, are listening?

I'm so glad, you can't hear me singing!

A beautiful sight,

We're happy tonight.

Eating in a winter wonderland.

There's only 10 days until Christmas so I got started a little late.

I shouldn't be eating any more sweets after all the birthday cake and ice cream I've been shovelling down lately. 

But it's the holidays! And I've been working out!

(Sort of....)

You all know how much I love baking in the holiday season so when McCormick reached out to me and chose my blog to try one of their amazing recipes, I couldn't turn it down!

This is actually my first truffle. You don't believe me?

Check out my recipes, I'll wait. See, told ya. I've never made truffles before.

In fact, it took me about a year to figure out what a truffle really was. 

But now I think I've got it.

And you'll be surprised how easy it is to make.

Especially since it's a no bake recipe.

WHAT?! NO BAKE?!

And it requires only a few ingredients.

I've got you hooked now don't I?!

Yeah, I knew it!

I'm warning you though, these truffles are MEGA sweet. It's like any old piece of candy (in level of sweetness and texture) but that's where the similarities end.

This really is a tiny piece of Christmas heaven!

Instead of the imitation rum that was suggested, I went ahead and used real rum. Because it was only a capful, you probably won't even notice that it's there. But it does add to the flavour!

So watch your sweet tooth!

I get the feeling a lot of you will be best friends with your dentist after eating these!

(Diabetics limit to one or just stay away)

Overview

Eggnog Truffles make a great holiday or hostess gift. Package the truffles in a holiday tin between wax paper.

Ingredients

Serves:

Makes 2 dozen or 12 (2 truffle) servings.

1 pound white baking chocolate, divided

4 ounces (1/2 package) cream cheese, softened

1/4 cup confectioners' sugar

1/4 teaspoon McCormick® Nutmeg, Ground

1/4 teaspoon McCormick® Imitation Rum Extract (I used real Bakara Rum)

Additional McCormick® Nutmeg, Ground , for sprinkling



Directions


  • Melt 8 ounces of the chocolate as directed on package. Beat cream cheese, confectioners’ sugar, nutmeg and extract in large bowl with electric mixer on medium speed mixer until well blended and smooth. Add melted chocolate; beat until well mixed. Cover. Refrigerate at least 4 hours or until firm.

  • Shape into 24 (about 3/4-inch) balls. Place on wax paper-lined tray. Refrigerate until ready to dip.

  • Coat only 12 truffles at a time. Melt 4 ounces of the remaining chocolate in small microwavable bowl on MEDIUM (50% power) 1 1/2 minutes, stirring after 1 minute. Using a fork, dip 1 truffle at a time into the melted chocolate. Tap back of fork 2 or 3 times against edge of dish to allow excess chocolate to drip off. Place truffles on wax paper-lined tray. (If there are any “bald” spots on truffle, cover with melted chocolate that remains on the fork.) Sprinkle truffles with nutmeg. Repeat with remaining 4 ounces chocolate and remaining truffles.

  • Refrigerate 1 hour or until chocolate is set. Store truffles between layers of wax paper in airtight container in refrigerator up to 1 week.

Nutritional information

(amount per servings)

Total Calories: 252

Sodium: 71mg

Fat: 16g

Carbohydrates: 24g

Cholesterol: 24mg

Protein: 3g

Fiber: 0g