If your holiday was anything like my holiday, you’ve been inundated with sweetness. It’s January 7th and I am still nibbling from a variety of leftover holiday cookies, chocolate gifts and doggy-bag desserts, not to mention the glasses of wine, eggnog and seasonal lattes that carry us through the holidays. The combination of 1) being too busy to exercise and 2) eating too many treats for the month of holidays, often results in a few extra pounds tipping the bathroom scale. This week I am tossing the remaining sweets and getting myself back to the gym. I plan to stave off my cravings for sugar with this recipe, completely sugar-free, dairy-free, flour-free and, according to my friend Susan, simply delicious! –Michelle
Sugar-free ‘New Year’s Resolution’ Banana Bars
3 mashed bananas
1/3 c apple sauce
2 c oats
1/4 c almond milk
1/2 c raisins
1 t vanilla
1 t cinnamon
Bake at 350 for 15-20 mins
Did you know that Oregon is the main producer of hazelnuts in the U.S.? For the holidays we like to gift hazelnuts as a locally-grown, organic treat from the Pacific Northwest. One of our doctors recommends this recipe for fans of hazelnuts from Sunset magazine, January, 2014.
Browned butter and hazelnut mashed potatoes
3 lbs potatoes, unpeeled, cut into 1-inch chunks
1 c hazelnuts, coarsely chopped
½ c unsalted butter
1 c milk, warmed to steaming
1 container (7 oz) plain Greek yogurt
2 t salt
½ t black pepper
Boil potatoes in a large, covered pot until soft (15 mins).
In a large frying pan, cook hazelnuts over med. heat, stirring often until fragrant (5 mins), add butter and cook another 5 mins until butter is golden brown, pour into a bowl and set aside.
Drain the cooked potatoes and mash them while hot. Add milk, yogurt, salt & pepper, mashing to blend. Transfer to a serving bowl and spoon half the hazelnut butter over top. Serve the remaining hazelnut butter in a gravy boat.
Serves 8, 30 minutes to prepare.
384 cal per serving, 55% (212 cal) from fat; 8.9 G Protein; 24 G Fat (10 G Sat.); 35 G Carbo (3.4 G Fiber); 511 MG Sodium; 38 MG Chol
And finally, here is a simple way to bring a burst of springtime to your closed-up rooms. Try this easy and resourceful idea for creating Natural Room Fresheners:
Karen plans to clean-out her spice cabinet in the coming weeks and to use the old spices to freshen up the house. Rather than pitching them into the garbage, she likes to add the spices to a small pot of water on the stovetop and to let it simmer.
Keep in mind that spring is just around the corner. And to those of you still digging your car out of the snow, we hope these tips for the season can warm your cold days and give you a sense of the brighter days ahead.