Tag Archives: berries

Recipe: Salted Chocolate Coconut Ganache Torte with Chocolate Cashew Crust

Chocolate Cashew Crust Ingredients:

  • 2 c. unsalted cashews
  • 1/4 c. cocoa powder
  • 2 Tbsp. coconut butter (or coconut oil; if not worried about dairy, butter might be a good substitute)
  • 1/4 c. maple syrup
  • 2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp. fine Himalayan sea salt

Crust Instructions: Add cashews to food processor and pulse till coarsely chopped. Add remaining ingredients and pulse until thoroughly combined. Press into greased 8″ round (or square) pan (I use Trader Joe’s coconut oil spray and wet my hands slightly to press the crust on the bottom and sides of the pan; you could use a spring-form pan, if desired). Chill in freezer until ready to fill.

Chocolate Coconut Ganache Filling Ingredients:

Filling Instructions: Bring coconut cream to low boil over medium-low heat. Empty chocolate chips into a large glass bowl. Pour boiling coconut cream over chips, let sit for 2-5 minutes, then whisk gently till smooth. Add vanilla and whisk gently until combined. Pour into chilled crust. Return to refrigerator to set and chill for at least 2 hours.

Top with any or all of the following: 

  • 1/4 – 1/2 c. coconut flakes
  • 1/4 c. roughly chopped, unsalted cashews
  • 1/2 – 1 c. whipped coconut cream (or whipped cream, if not concerned about being dairy-free)
  • 1/2 – 1 c. fresh berries (strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, or a combination would be nice; or you could serve this on the side)

Serving Instructions: Serve chilled in small slices or petit-four sized squares. Just before serving, sprinkle with 1-2 tsp. coarse, pink, Himalayan sea salt (if you do this earlier, the salt may dissolve into the dessert). It looks especially nice on top of whipped cream or whipped coconut cream, since it’s a beautiful pink! Serves 12-24 (depending on how large you cut). Bonus: This recipe is gluten free and dairy free! Bon appetit!

Journey Journal: Days 149-151

Day 149: Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Breakfast of berries and peaches topped with granola. Lunch with salad, topped with curried ground beef, bacon, hard boiled egg, carrots, red onions, honeyed almonds, dried cranberries, grape tomatoes and homemade honey mustard dressing. After about a month off, I finally made it back to iVIVA today! I’ve missed it! Dinner of leftover tuna pasta with peas and a side of leftover baked beans. For dessert, I had a frozen lime fruit bar.

Day 150: Thursday, May 30, 2013

Started with a breakfast of granola, blueberries, and soy milk…and coffee, of course. Lunch was another salad (same as yesterday). Had an afternoon snack of a Green Goodness Smoothie from Bolthouse Farms. Went to iVIVA again after work–my favorite part is definitely the sauna. Then I made a dinner of steak (seared on the stovetop then broiled in the oven – recipe here), caramelized onions, penne pasta with marinara and goat cheese, garlic green beans with roasted tomatoes. Finished the evening with some decaf organic coffee with coconut milk.


Day 151: Friday, May 31, 2013

Grabbed a quick bowl of Kashi cereal before heading out the door for work. Lunch was leftover steak, green beans, and pasta. For dinner, we decided to splurge and ended up at Pizza City before taking an evening drive.

I am going to try to do gluten-free and dairy-free for the month of June, so it was nice to have one last splurge before May ends. I’ve definitely noticed a difference since being off of dairy (though I will still, obviously, eat it occasionally–as pictured above).

Beginning tomorrow, I’ll be looking for all kinds of GF-DF recipes! I’m starting here: http://glutenfreegoddess.blogspot.com/2008/09/gluten-free-casein-free-recipe-index.html. And Bryan even agreed to do the gluten-free part with me (he still won’t give up his cheese and butter unless he’s cooking for me). So, wish us luck!

Green Remedies from Good Morning America Health

Check out the video above for great home remedies, including homemade hand sanitizer, honey, garlic, and organic milk.


Two Delicious Salads – One Delicious Dressing

After a few heavy meals over this holiday, we decided to have salad with both lunch and dinner today and, boy, were they good!

Dressing Recipe (courtesy of my Aunt Cheryl):
1/4 c. blackberry preserves (I used Smuckers, of course)
1/4 c. sweet vinaigrette dressing (I used Wishbone’s Lite Raspberry Walnut Vinaigrette)
Melt over medium low heat and whisk together till combined.

Salad 1 (You could reduce the amount, but we had a big group here for lunch, so we used a lot):
3 hearts of Romaine Lettuce
2 cans of Mandarin Orange Segments
1/2 Red Onion, thinly sliced
1/2 Pomegranate (arils only)
1 package of Oscar Mayer precooked bacon, cut into small pieces

Salad 2 (inspired by Aunt Cheryl):
1 box of prewashed 50/50 Salad Mix (romaine and spring mix)
1/4 red onion, thinly sliced
1 small package fresh blueberries
1 small package blackberries
1 small bag of glazed pecan pieces
1 granny smith apple, thinly sliced
4 hard boiled eggs, sliced

Our lunch salad was served with noodles and meatballs. Our dinner salad was served with pizza. Both were delicious! And I will make that dressing over and over again.

Recipe: Spinach Bacon Mushroom Quiche


  • 5 oz. (or 1/2 bag) of frozen chopped organic spinach
  • 5 oz. (or 1/2 bag) of frozen mixed organic mushrooms
  • 1/2 lb. all-natural bacon (2 slices whole for decoration on top of the quiche; cut the rest into small pieces with kitchen shears before frying)
  • 4 all-natural large eggs
  • 2 c. organic 2% milk
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. pepper
  • 1/2 tsp. dried thyme
  • 1 1/4 c. shredded Farmer’s cheese (or your favorite cheese: Swiss, Cheddar or Mozzarella would also be good)
  • 1/2 recipe of perfect, flaky pie crust (find recipe here)


  1. Make dough. You make this ahead and chill it if you want, then roll it out when you’re ready to bake. I had 1/2 recipe left from making my chicken pot pie earlier this week, so I pulled that out of the fridge and cut it in half. I rolled out 1/2 into a 10″ round for my 9″ pie plate. Then I took the last portion and divided it into 6 equal parts, rolled them into little balls, and flattened out into about 3″ circles. I put these into a 6 muffin baking dish. (You can do this while your bacon fries, as long as you don’t have the heat up too high where it cooks too quickly.) No need to grease your pans! There’s enough grease in the dough that it won’t stick!
  2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  3. Thaw spinach and mushrooms. Squeeze out excess water (I used a paper towel and strainer for this; you could use cheesecloth if you have it around).
  4. Meanwhile, cook bacon over medium heat. Don’t get it too crispy, since it will be cooked a little more as the quiche bakes. Drain on paper towel lined plate.
  5. Shred cheese (or your favorite cheese: swiss, mozzarella, or cheddar would also be nice).
  6. Whisk milk, eggs, salt, pepper, and thyme together.
  7. Assemble and bake:
  • Combine spinach, mushrooms, bacon, and cheese and disperse in each pie shell.

Shells with spinach, bacon, mushroom, and cheese (egg mixture to the side)

A Closer Look at the Filling

  • Pour egg mixture over top.

Ready for the oven!

  • Just before baking, place 2 whole pieces of bacon in a criss-cross on top of quiche.
  • Bake at 350F. The muffin pan took about 40 minutes, where as the larger quiche took 50-60 minutes. (I started the timer at 30 minutes and kept adding 5 minutes until the tops were golden brown.)

Finished Products!

  • Let cool slightly before eating.

Spinach Bacon Mushroom Quiche

I served mine with coffee, fresh strawberries and blueberries. Yum!

Waiting on the coffee... 3 place settings because my brother is in town for the weekend (he was shocked when I brought him breakfast in bed)!

Breakfast is served! My sister gave me these adorable antique tea services, perfect for today!

Bon Appetit!

Sunday Breakfast: My First Quinoa Experience

Some of you have asked about the quinoa recipe posted earlier this week. I made this recipe and served it to my husband, aunt, uncle, and cousin for breakfast this morning. It was fabulous! I didn’t have enough blackberries for the full amount, so I used all the frozen berries I had and thawed them: blackberries, strawberries, raspberries, and blueberries. I served the nuts on the side, since my cousin’s allergic. Everyone enjoyed it! I was nervous because I’d had several people tell me quinoa was not enjoyable even though it was nutritious. I disagree. This was a great recipe! Enjoy it!

My version: Four Berry Quinoa

Quinoa is considered a Supergrain! It contains carbohydrates for energy, high level of protein, and essential amino acids, especially Omega-3 fatty acids.

Here’s a sample of quinoa nutrition facts:
Ancient Harvest Quinoa Organic Whole Grain – Traditional

Serving Size: 1/4 cup dry (42g)

Nutrition Facts:
Calories 172, Calories from Fat 25, Total Fat 2.8g, Saturated Fat 0g, Trans Fat 0g, Cholesterol 0mg,
Sodium 1mg, Carbohydrate 31g, Dietary Fiber 3g, Soluble 36%, In-Soluble 64%, Sugars 3g, Protein 6g

Glycemic Index: 35