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August 21, 2014 Post a comment

Chocolate Mint Matcha Smoothie.

Chocolate Mint Matcha Smoothie. by Knead to Cook.

Chocolate Mint Matcha Smoothie.   Totally vegan.  This smoothie was inspired by a Thrive recipe.  I’ll admit, Matcha is growing on me as I wasn’t a big fan when I first tasted it.  It really is such a powerhouse that I kept incorporating it into my smoothies and now I tolerate it.  It’s different from green tea because the leaves are crushed into powder form and you consume them (hello kryptonite) v. tea leaves which are just steeped.

Amongst its many benefits, matcha…
Is packed with antioxidantsincluding the powerful EGCg.
Boosts metabolism and burns calories.
Detoxifies effectively and naturally.
Calms and relaxes.
Enhances mood and aids in concentration.
Provides vitamin C, selenium, chromium, zinc and magnesium.
Fights against viruses and bacteria.
Is rich in fiber.
Lowers cholesterol and blood sugar.
Does not raise insulin levels.

Okay with that being said, adding other flavors to it makes it, in my opinion, way more tasty.  I love this smoothie and I have it in my post workout rotation of smoothie breakfast choices.  Plus it’s chocolatey which makes the start of any day awesome!  My kids also love it so I’ll go out on a limb and say that it’s kid-approved.  Now where to find Green Tea Matcha Powder?  Some tea shops will have it.  I found it at the grocery store in the specialty tea aisle, online but be aware, it is pricey.  Thankfully you don’t use that much in recipes because it is so powerful.  Just wanted to share.
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August 20, 2014 Post a comment

How to prepare tempeh by Knead to Cook.

How to prepare tempeh by Knead to Cook.

It’s been one of those foods that I love when I go out to vegan restaurants but just couldn’t get as tasty at home.  Tempeh is made from soybeans.  Quite popular throughout the world but gaining more popularity in the U.S.  Tempeh is packed with manganese, protein, fiber, phosphorous, B2 and magnesium – so a nutritional powerhouse of sorts for vegans and vegetarians alike.  It’s a firm texture and is so versatile – absorbing spices and marinades alike.  But don’t let it scare you… it’s easier to cook than you may think.

So over the last year I’ve asked friends how they cook it.  I’ve gotten a wide variety of answers and suggestions, all of which I tried but never loved.  Trial and error.  Soybeans to me have a bitter bite that I just don’t favor.  But it bothered me how much tastier it was in restaurants and I started on my mission to make it palatable, if not wonderful at home.  My husband and I both love tempeh… and were both thrilled with this recipe.  I hope you give it a try.
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August 18, 2014 Post a comment

Maple balsamic sage roasted figs by Knead to Cook.

Maple balsamic sage roasted figs by Knead to Cook.

Maple balsamic roasted figs.  

I’m so excited to be back to blogging!  The last two weeks have been a crazy blur to say the least.  As many of you know, I had my third and final finger surgery.  3 pins and a bone fusion.  I keep the pins several months (they make me bionic – ha ha) and I now have a removable cast that I wear 23 hours a day.  I’ve returned back to my fitness routine, albeit in a milder form to get myself back in gear.  Yesterday was my first sojourn back onto my bike and admittedly, I’m addicted to it.  It felt so freeing to be back out, wind in my hair and just free.  We rode 28.2 miles.  Smiles for miles – literally.

This weekend Bill and I also returned to the farmer’s market for our grocery shopping.  I excitedly discovered one of my favorites – figs and joyfully bought a basket of them.  I think you either love or hate them.  I fall into the love category for sure.  This recipe is a wonderfully sweet treat that is very versatile.  You can use these as a side dish, as a dessert or to top your favorite vanilla ice cream.  I love serving these at parties as well and they’re always a favorite.  You can’t go wrong with this recipe – totally full-proof!  I pinky promise.

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August 10, 2014 Post a comment

Zucchini Blueberry Oat Muffins.  Vegan.  Gluten Free by Knead to Cook.

Zucchini Blueberry Oat Muffins. Vegan. Gluten Free by Knead to Cook.

Zucchini Blueberry Oat Muffins.  Vegan and gluten free!

I whipped these yummy muffins up on Sunday when I was overloaded with both blueberries and zucchini.  I thought it would make a fun combination because zucchini doesn’t have a strong flavor and wouldn’t compete with the blueberries.  Zucchini also adds so much moisture that it would be a great pairing… and it was!  The texture of gluten free muffins and cookies isn’t like traditional gluten based flours so be forewarned but these had even my most picky family members clamoring for seconds or thirds.  Super moist, these little sweeties are perfect for breakfast, your tea or coffee break or as a snack.

For those of you who follow me on IG or Twitter – my finger surgery went relatively well with only one of the 3 pins breaking during surgery.  Surgery concluded with 3 intact pins and a bone fusion that took about 1.5 hours.  I’ve been banned from working out (minus walking) until my appointment on Thursday.  Fingers crossed that I get the green light to start running again.  Since Friday’s super duper antibiotic shot that lasted about 3 minutes, I am feeling human again!  Thanks for all of the wonderful emails, texts, flowers, and prayers! oxo

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August 3, 2014 Post a comment

Cauliflower Rice Chickpea Almond Salad.

Cauliflower Rice Almond Chickpea Salad by Knead to Cook.

Cauliflower “rice” almond chickpea salad that is vegan and gluten free.  Meatless Monday, packable lunch or side dish idea.

So happy to be back from vacation.  We so needed a break from the summer routine, swimming, tennis and day-to-day duties.  Exploring another country was a lot of fun and I always love learning another language.  I enjoyed so much vegan cuisine along the way and takeaway so much inspiration from pretty much everything we experienced.  I was thrilled to still train while on vacation, it’s a sanity thing for me.  Not that I don’t love my family but everyone in one hotel room all week together – this girl needed a bit of sanity time.

We arrived home late Friday and that evening was filled with laundry and decompressing.  Saturday Bill and I got back to our routine of hitting up the farmer’s market early and just walking around downtown.  Stocked up on lots of goodies and enjoyed our fur babies with some lovely walks.  Sunday, we decided to drive out to an Amish area and ride our bikes.  We got up nice and early (5:30 am), loaded the bikes up and headed out.  We rode our furthest distance yet – 31 miles!  This is huge for me considering I just started riding about 1.5 months ago.  This was my third ride clipping in.  Now, Bill told me this was a “rolling hills ride”.  Ummmmm yeah, NO!  It was totally uphill the entire time.  Okay, I may exaggerate a bit but holy hills man my legs were ON FIRE!  I did manage to ride through a covered bridge which left me with a bit of pause before I entered – seeing the open slats in between the wood and considering how thin my road bike tires are (insert here:  tire stuck, me flying off my bike fear) oh and the Jetta that couldn’t wait for me to ride through alone… Survived that.  Lots of horses and buggies carrying the Amish off to church.  Lots of horse reminders on the road to dodge. Cows grazing.  Sheep. Pigs.  Goats.  I saw it all, loved it all.  Overall, my speed was good- according to Bill and I don’t care because I didn’t fall (yay) and again – further distance yet!

Post ride we came home and took the dogs for a walk.  I whipped this dish up to eat this week.  I’m having my 3rd surgery on my finger Tuesday.  Bone fusion and pins.  Lots of paranoia after last year’s debacle when I got a staph infection.  So prepping food that I can grab easily while my hand is splinted. I also can run for two weeks – however walking has been given the green light.  My doc also thought my bike in a trainer would be good.  Praying that’s so! So if I’m a bit MIA – you know why.
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July 24, 2014 Post a comment

Cherry Sage Toasted Quinoa by Knead to Cook

Cherry Sage Toasted Quinoa by Knead to Cook

After a busy morning and what seemed to be endless doc appointments, I was thrilled to get home and cook something and wait for it…. blog about it!  Seems like a rare event lately.  Summer is just so hard with crazy schedules.  My day started out with an early doc appointment so I got an early workout in – 4 fast miles (see below) and then weights.  After that was swim, tennis and then the orthodontist.  Running lunch/dinner to my daughter who is lifeguarding all day… does this sound familiar?  Well swim season ends Saturday (my daughter qualified for a championship meet in backstroke) and after that – we are on vacation!   I cannot wait to breathe for just a moment in time.

This afternoon is quiet in my house.  I wanted to whip something up with all of the cherries I’ve been buying ($1.99 lb) and I cannot resist!  I thought this recipe sounded perfect and it turned out so good… I keep sampling it and need to stop!  I have a food problem, actually, I have an eating problem.  I cannot stop!  Would make a great breakfast – yes, just add a touch of maple syrup or you can eat it for lunch or as a side for dinner.

Okay so without further adieu…
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Peanut Butter Coconut Cookies. Vegan. Gluten Free.

Peanut Butter Coconut Cookies. Vegan. Gluten Free. By Knead to Cook. Peanut butter coconut cookies that are vegan AND gluten free – not to mention oil-free.  These cookies turned out perfecty.  Protein packed and so delish!  These will not last long in my house.  So it’s a brand new week.  Actually it’s the last week … Continue Reading »

Vegan Gluten Free Chocolate Chip Muffins.

Vegan and gluten free chocolate chip muffins?  Why YES!!!  Summer baking just doesn’t happen in my house… I hate turning on the oven when it’s hot out but thanks to this lovely polar vortex we are experiencing – the doors and windows are open to let the fresh, cool air in!  It is perfection.  Can … Continue Reading »

Strawberry Salsa. Vegan. Gluten Free.

Strawberry salsa is vegan, gluten free and screams of summer!  I could eat salsa day and night.  I eat it right out of the bowl, with taco chips or on my favorite spoon – displayed here.  Ha!  We had our last regular season swim meet last night during a lovely thunderstorm and that ended (due … Continue Reading »

Massaged Kale Salad. Vegan.

  All hail the massaged kale salad.  Kale has become increasing popular and trendy but this is one trend that nutritionally needs to stay around.  The nutritional benefits to kale are astounding. Kale is low in calorie, high in fiber and has zero fat. Kale is high in iron. Kale is high in Vitamin K. Kale is filled with … Continue Reading »