Category Archives: Desserts

pumpkinbrittle

Pumpkin Seed Brittle

pumpkinbrittle

(This recipe is tree nut free & gluten free)

You carved your pump­kins and saved those pump­kin seeds, and we know just what to do with them! Of course, if you didn’t save them, you can sim­ply pur­chase a bag of shelled, raw pump­kin seeds (also known as pepi­tas) from the gro­cery store.

 

Ingre­di­ents

 

  • Vegetable-oil spray or 1 tea­spoon butter
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 4 ounces (1 stick) unsalted butter
  • 1/3 cup honey
  • 1/2 tea­spoon bak­ing soda
  • 2 tea­spoons to 1 1/2 table­spoons sea salt
  • 1 1/2 cups of raw, unroasted pepitas

 

Pro­ce­dures

 

  1. Line bak­ing sheet pan with parch­ment paper and lightly coat it with veg­etable spray or butter.
  2. Put the sugar, but­ter, honey, and 1/2 cup plus 2 table­spoons water to a large saucepan, and stir together until all the sugar is wet. Cook over high medium-high, but mon­i­tor it care­fully until the mix­ture begins to thicken up a lit­tle bit.
  3. Once the mix­ture turns a medium golden (takes at least 10 min­utes) imme­di­ately remove from the heat, and care­fully whisk in the bak­ing soda fol­lowed by the salt (Caramel mix­ture will bub­ble quite a bit at this point). Switch to a wooden or metal spoon, and fold in the pepi­tas or seeds.
  4. Quickly pour the mix­ture onto the sheet pan, and spread it out over the pan using the back of the spoon before it starts to harden.
  5. Cool com­pletely, then break into bite size pieces and you are ready to enjoy.  Store in an air­tight con­tainer in the refrigerator.
blog-boonanas

Halloween Treats — BOOnanas!

blog-boonanas

If you pre­fer a health­ier Hal­loween treat to serve at home, there are cre­ative ways to serve fruit that is also fun. The whole fam­ily can join in and help make these spooky Boo­nana Ghosts!

These Banana & Coconut ghost sticks are a great alter­na­tive to sugar loaded pop­si­cles.  They are also super easy to make, just pop them in the freezer and they are set to go!  We love bananas because they are the per­fect energy filled snack. They are packed with vit­a­mins and min­er­als that help the body main­tain lev­els of energy dur­ing phys­i­cal activity.

Yields — 4 BOO­nana pops

 Ingredients:

  • 2 large bananas
  • 1 cup of unsweet­ened shred­ded coconut — Spread out on a cookie sheet tray
  • ½ cup of cold orange juice
  • Choco­late chips — for ghost eyes
  • Raisins — for ghost mouths
  • Sev­eral pop­si­cle sticks

 

Pro­ce­dures:

  1. Peel bananas and cut in half. Stick a pop­si­cle stick start­ing on the flat end of the banana 2 inches up. Freeze bananas on a wax paper lined sheet tray.
  2. Once frozen, remove bananas from the freezer and brush them with ice cold orange juice. Imme­di­ately roll them on the shred­ded coconut.
  3. Stick choco­late chips on to the face area for eyes by press­ing firmly.
  4. Stick a raisin to mouth area.
  5. Now you have BOO­nanas to enjoy!
SONY DSC

Ginger Pear Mini Drop Scones with Brown Butter

SONY DSC

Ingre­di­ents

  • 1 ½ cup whole wheat flour
  • 1 cup of oats, finely ground in a food processor
  • ½ cup all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup turbinado sugar (sugar in the raw)
  • 2 tsp bak­ing powder
  • ½ tsp bak­ing soda
  • ½ tsp kosher salt
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • 1 stick of unsalted butter
  • 1 cup of pear, peeled, cored, finely diced (approx 1 medium pear)
  • ¼ cup Greek yogurt
  • ¼ cup cold water

Pro­ce­dure

  1. Set oven at 325 degrees
  2. Brown the but­ter in a stain­less steel pan at medium heat. Remove from the heat when the milk solids begin to sink to the bot­tom of the pan and turn a light brown color. You will notice a nutty aroma which means the solids have caramelized. Pour browned but­ter into a con­tainer and allow it to solid­ify in the refrigerator.
  3.  Mix all of the dry ingre­di­ents: Flours, ground oats, sugar, bak­ing pow­der, bak­ing soda, salt, and ground gin­ger in a large mix­ing bowl.
  4.  Scoop chilled but­ter into the dry ingre­di­ent mix and dis­solve with your hands until the but­ter is the size of small peas. The dry ingre­di­ents will resem­ble slightly humid sand at this point.
  5.  In another bowl, mix yogurt and cold water together, then slowly fold into the dry ingredients.
  6.  Mix only until all of the dry ingre­di­ents become moistened.
  7.  Fold in diced pears into the bat­ter and mix thor­oughly, again mak­ing sure you do not over-mix.
  8.  Scoop out bat­ter into mini cup­cake molds. Fill ¾ of the way up.
  9.  Bake until the tops are a slightly golden color.

 

 

Sources:

 http://money.msn.com/investing/post–some-food-companies-are-dumping-the-natural-label

Chocolate Bark

Dark Chocolate Bark!

Chocolate Bark

 

It’s Feb­ru­ary and love is in the air! This Valentine’s Day, we have the per­fect way to show your love: Say it with choco­late! Dark Choco­late Bark, that is.

 

A healthy dose of tangy dried cran­ber­ries & protein-packed roasted pump­kin seeds are smoth­ered with 65% dark choco­late to cre­ate a treat that you’ll love to share with your kids this spe­cial day! This recipe is gluten-free, nut-free, soy-free, and may be vegan – depend­ing on the type of choco­late you choose.

 

We rec­om­mend using: Divine 70% smooth dark choco­late, which is suit­able for vegetarians

 

Dry Cran­berry, Pepita (Pump­kin Seeds!), and Dark Choco­late Bark Recipe

 

  • 100g dark choco­late bar (3.5 oz bar)
  • ⅓ cup raw pump­kin seeds
  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • ¼ cup dry cranberries

 

Method

 

  1. Toast the pump­kin seeds in a sauté pan over medium heat. Set aside.
  2. Fill a saucepan halfway with water, then bring to a light sim­mer. This will be a water bath used to melt the choco­late. Posi­tion a stain­less steel bowl over the water bath.
  3. Cut the choco­late into 6 equal pieces then place in the stain­less steel bowl, allow it to melt, mix­ing it slowly and fre­quently. Once melted, sprin­kling salt over chocolate.
  4. Pour choco­late over a small cookie sheet that has been lined with parch­ment paper.
  5. Spread choco­late evenly across the cookie sheet until choco­late layer is ¼ of an inch thick.
  6. Sprin­kle pump­kin seeds evenly over choco­late, then sprin­kle cran­ber­ries over choco­late layer mak­ing sure top­pings are par­tially sub­merged into choco­late layer.
  7. Refrig­er­ate until choco­late hard­ens. (about 30 minutes)
  8. Once hard, crack choco­late into bite size pieces. Enjoy imme­di­ately or store in an air­tight con­tainer inside the refrigerator.
Heart Brownie1

February is for chocolate lovers!

Heart Brownie1

Why We LOVE Dark Chocolate

From the sprawl­ing cities of the Aztecs where Emper­ors drank noth­ing but cocoa and cocoa beans were a form of cur­rency, to the cob­ble­stoned streets of Europe, were cocoa was con­sid­ered fit for roy­alty, choco­late has always had its place in society’s culi­nary reper­toire. Today, it is a favorite among chil­dren, adults, and even health pro­fes­sion­als who have long touted its health super-powers.

 

With Valentine’s Day right around the cor­ner, the allure of choco­late will soon be on everyone’s lips. How­ever, not all choco­late bars are cre­ated equal. Lately, there has been a buzz around choco­late as researchers uncover new health ben­e­fits of cocoa. We at Whole­some Tum­mies have dis­cov­ered that there is much to love about choco­late – and dark choco­late in particular.

 

The Good

 

It has long been known that antiox­i­dant com­pounds found in cocoa beans pro­mote heart health. How­ever, a study pub­lished in Neu­rol­ogy explains that the brain may also ben­e­fit from cocoa con­sump­tion. The Har­vard study dis­cov­ered that older patients who were given a cocoa drink rich in Flavonoids, a type of antiox­i­dant, had an increase of blood flow to the brain which helped with work­ing mem­ory tests. This dis­cov­ery is lead­ing researchers to believe that the mighty cocoa bean may help to keep away cog­ni­tive degen­er­a­tive dis­eases such as Alzheimer’s.

 

Besides its known heart and car­dio­vas­cu­lar ben­e­fits, cocoa con­sump­tion can also aid in stim­u­la­tion of the ner­vous sys­tem, facil­i­tated diges­tion, and improved kid­ney and bowel function.

 

The Bad

 

After learn­ing all of the won­ders that the hum­ble cacao bean can carry, nobody wants to think about the draw­backs of indulging in delec­table choco­late treats. But nowa­days cacao is mixed with high amounts of sugar and fat to cre­ate the ubiq­ui­tous choco­late candy bar. If you’ve ever tried a tea­spoon of cocoa pow­der, you under­stand this is done in part to mask the nat­u­rally bit­ter taste of cocoa.

To avoid the unhealthy amounts of fat and sugar found in most choco­late bars, we rec­om­mend choos­ing bars con­tain­ing more than 65% cocoa con­tent (dark choco­late bars) and avoid added ingre­di­ents such as arti­fi­cial fla­vors, tof­fee, nougat, and caramel as these add to the sugar amount. Or try adding unsweet­ened cocoa pow­der to baked goods and smooth­ies to add a burst of choco­late fla­vor with­out the extra calories.

We LOVE choco­late here at WT! This is why all of our choco­late WT Cre­ations have a healthy dose of cocoa pow­der and/or dark choco­late mixed in so that all of our WT kids can reap the ben­e­fits of the mighty cacao bean! For Valentine’s Day this year, try our whole wheat WT heart shaped brown­ies. They are sim­ply made, and absolutely deli­cious.  You will fall in love!

 

HOW IS CHOCOLATE MADE?

  1. Cacao pods are har­vested from cacao trees grow­ing in the tropics.
  2. The beans from inside those pods are placed in pits or wooden bins, cov­ered with banana leaves, and left to ferment.
  3. After fer­men­ta­tion, the beans are dried in the sun for about a week.
  4. Dried beans are shipped to a fac­tory, where they are first sifted and roasted.
  5. The beans are then cracked and win­nowed, leav­ing the bit­ter but edi­ble cacao nibs.
  6. The nibs are crushed and ground into a thick paste called choco­late liquor. Choco­late liquor has a strong, bit­ter taste, and a grainy texture.
  7. To make what we know as choco­late, man­u­fac­tur­ers then add sugar, cocoa but­ter, and vanilla, yield­ing a sweet but still grainy mixture.
  8. Finally, man­u­fac­tur­ers run the mix­ture through a series of steel rollers to refine the tex­ture, and may add more cocoa but­ter and soy lecithin to cre­ate choco­late bars as we know them.

Sources:

http://circ.ahajournals.org/content/119/10/1433.long

http://pharmaxchange.info/press/2013/07/pharmacognosy-and-health-benefits-of-cocoa-seeds-chocolate/

onegreenplanet.org

An Easy Fall Treat

pumpkin-pudding-parfait

 

Fall is here! Why not take advan­tage of the all the pump­kins this year and turn them into a quick, deli­cious fall treat?

 

Hal­loween Pump­kin Pud­ding Parfait

Serv­ings: 8 · Serv­ing Size: 4 oz  Calo­ries per serv­ing: 260

 

Ingre­di­ents:

  • 1 tsp cornstarch
  • 1 cup pump­kin, Canned
  • 1 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1/2 cup dark brown sugar, packed
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp gin­ger, Ground
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 6 ea. rec­tan­gle gra­ham crack­ers, roughly, crum­bled (optional)

 

Instruc­tions:

In a small bowl, dis­solve corn­starch with 1 tsp. water.

  1. In a medium saucepan over medium-low heat, com­bine pump­kin, 1/2 cup cream, brown sugar, maple syrup, add spices and salt.
  2. Cook, whisk­ing con­stantly, for about 5 min­utes or until sugar dis­solves. Stir in corn­starch mix­ture, bring just to a boil, then imme­di­ately reduce heat to low, and cook, whisk­ing con­stantly, for 2 minutes.
  3. Strain through a fine-mesh sieve into a large bowl and cool com­pletely in the refrig­er­a­tor. (about 2 hours +)
  4. Whip remain­ing 1 cup of cream and vanilla extract until firm peaks form.
  5. Fold 1/3 of whipped cream into pump­kin mix­ture, then fold in remain­ing cream until no streaks remain. Divide half of mousse among serv­ing bowls or glasses and sprin­kle with half of cookie crumbs. Repeat with remain­ing mousse and crumbs. Cover and chill 4 hours before serving.

Optional gar­nish: Whip 1 cup of cream with vanilla extract to stiff peaks. Place whipped cream in a pip­ing bag and pipe a dol­lop of cream onto the par­fait. Sprin­kle with rough ground cin­na­mon sticks.

blog-smoothie

New Menu Highlights

blog-smoothie

We have been hard at work all sum­mer long prepar­ing for our excit­ing Fall 2013 menu! We even added a full-time team mem­ber to our grow­ing com­pany in order to focus our ener­gies on the very impor­tant topic of recipe test­ing. Wel­come, Marysol!

Some new items we are pleased to announce include:

Sun­but­ter Brown­ies
Our creamy sun­but­ter (nut-free and made from yummy sun­flow­ers) com­bines with rich vel­vety cocoa to cre­ate a choco­lately match made in heaven!

Inside Out Cup­cakes
Our newest line of WT Cre­ations, these del­i­ca­cies con­sist of a health­ier cup­cake for­mula that is then injected with a yummy, icing-like filling!

Smoothie Day Fundraiser
What do the names Choko Loko, Very Berry, and Banana Blue have in com­mon? They are all final­ists in our Cre­ate a Smoothie con­test. We are test­ing a vari­ety of smooth­ies to see which ones YOU like best! Get on to the Whole­some Tum­mies Face­book page and place your vote today!

Side Items
More fresh sides to choose from – we are increas­ing our num­ber of fresh side items so your child has a hard time say­ing no!

Entree items cur­rently being tested include:

  • Taquitos
  • Ravi­oli
  • Cal­zones
  • Crispy Chicken Sandwich
  • Buf­falo Chicken Sandwich

Here’s to keep­ing our menu fresh, nutri­tious, and exciting!!!

Chef’s Corner: Cranberry Coconut Muffins

A deli­cious healthy treat recipe from the Whole­some Tum­mies Cor­po­rate Chef. Com­plete with the sweet­ness of coconut and the tart­ness of cran­ber­ries. Whole wheat flour gives it that extra punch of pro­tein. Who needs sup­ple­ments when you eat nutri­tious foods? cranberrymuffins

Health ben­e­fits of coconut? Improves heart health, high in dietary fiber, low glycemic index, reduces sweet crav­ings, improves diges­tion, quick energy boost, and gluten free.

And now cranberries.…Antioxidant-rich, pre­vents plaque on teeth, pre­vents stom­ach can­cers and ulcers, increases good cho­les­terol (HDL), reduces
bad cho­les­terol (LDL), pre­vents tumors, wards off breast can­cer, and blocks uri­nary track infections.

Enjoy with a tall glass of milk!

Cran­berry Coconut Muffins

Yields approx­i­mately 12 muffins

Ingre­di­ents:

  • 1 1/2 cups fresh cran­ber­ries or 1 1/2 cups frozen cran­ber­ries, rough chopped
  • 1 1/4 cups sugar, divided
  • 2 table­spoons chopped crys­tal­lized ginger
  • 1 tea­spoon cinnamon
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1 1/2 table­spoons bak­ing powder
  • 1/2 tea­spoon salt
  • 1/2 cup coconut oil, softened
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 cup milk or 1 cup unsweet­ened coconut milk
  • 1 cup chopped flaked coconut

Direc­tions:

  1. Pre­heat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Toss cran­ber­ries with 1/4 cup of sugar, gin­ger and cin­na­mon in a bowl; set aside.
  3. In a mix­ing bowl, com­bine flour, bak­ing pow­der, salt, and remain­ing 1 cup sugar.
  4. Mix in coconut oil. Com­bine eggs with milk; stir into flour mix­ture until just
  5. moist­ened. Gen­tly fold in coconut, orange zest and cranberries.
  6. Do not over mix.
  7. Fill paper-lined muf­fin tins two thirds full.
  8. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes

Don’t be afraid! Make Your Own Pie Dough!

Hol­i­day Bak­ing – Home­made Pie Crust (it’s eas­ier than you think!)
There is one sim­ple recipe that will make any hol­i­day a breeze. You make it once, store it in the refrig­er­a­tor or freezer, and can use it in a dozen dif­fer­ent ways: pie dough.
We know, this sounds like some­thing many of you would NEVER attempt on your own. Work­ing with dough is messy and only “pro­fes­sional” chefs do that, right?  We are here to dis­pel that myth! Home­made pie dough is not only eas­ier than you think, but the taste and qual­ity is incom­pa­ra­ble to chemical-laden, store bought alter­na­tives. Home­made dough is incred­i­bly ver­sa­tile too.
Instead of fuss­ing with a rolling pin, press chunks of the dough into a pie plate and fill with your favorite fruit or meat mix­ture. For some­thing more rus­tic, cre­ate a free-formed pie by rolling dough into a ¼-inch thick, 12-inch round. Place fruit fill­ing directly in the mid­dle and fold the edges of the dough up and over the filling.
The per­fect pie dough is char­ac­ter­is­ti­cally an oxy­moron — flaky, crispy, lay­ers com­press under your teeth and melt into a ten­der, tasty bite.
An impor­tant tip for begin­ners: Keep it Cold:
Regard­less of the fats used in any recipe, the fat must remain cold at all times. To give the fat a fight­ing chance in your warm kitchen, place the fat in the freezer for a min­i­mum of 30 min­utes before using, chill the remain­ing ingre­di­ents in the freezer for at least 10 min­utes before mix­ing, and use ice water instead of room tem­per­a­ture water. Cold fat will pro­duce a flaky crust by cre­at­ing small pock­ets of air between the lay­ers of flour as it melts in the oven.
 
Pie dough
Serv­ings: Makes one (1) dou­ble crust batch; top and bottom
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Bake Time: Varies, depend­ing on the filling
Allergy Info: Soy-free; con­tains wheat, dairy
Ingre­di­ents:
2 –1/2 cups all pur­pose flour
pinch of kosher salt
2 table­spoons sugar
20 table­spoons but­ter, frozen
1 tea­spoon apple cider vine­gar, cold
Water
Direc­tions:
Mea­sure all crust ingre­di­ents and place in the freezer for 15 minutes.
Com­bine flour, salt and sugar in a food proces­sor and pulse sev­eral times to mix. If cre­at­ing the crust by hand with a pas­try blender, whisk the ingre­di­ents in a large bowl until incorporated.
Break up the but­ter with the food proces­sor or pas­try blender.
Add the vine­gar. Add one table­spoon of water at a time, puls­ing to incor­po­rate, or blend­ing with a pas­try blender, until the dough begins to come together, but is still dry, and you see a vari­ety of pieces of fat. The fat should be in very small pieces, medium pieces and larger pieces, but no big­ger than a nickel.
Pinch some of the dough in your hand. If the dough sticks together and does not crum­ble in your hand, the dough is ready. If the dough does not stick to itself, add another table­spoon of water, pulse or mix, and pinch the dough together again. Repeat until the dough holds together with­out being overly wet. Dough should be slightly crumbly, but hold together when pinched.
Remove dough from the mix­ing bowl and trans­fer to a work sur­face. Divide the dough into two equal parts and gen­tly shape into two flat round discs. Wrap in plas­tic and refrig­er­ate for at least one hour, or up to two days.
No mat­ter the fill­ing, the dough should be baked at 400 degrees Fahren­heit; the smaller the por­tion, the shorter the cook­ing time. Appe­tiz­ers will need about 12 to 15 min­utes, while 9-inch pies may require up to 40 to 50 minutes.

In Season: Watermelon

Water­melon is a vine-like veg­etable, related to cucum­bers and squash. Not only does water­melon quench sum­mer­time thirst with its high water con­tent, it also acts as an anti-inflammatory agent, with the abil­ity to calm symp­toms that con­tribute to con­di­tions like asthma. Water­melon is very low in calo­ries, with zero fat and cho­les­terol. It’s high in fiber, vit­a­mins A & C and is a good source of potas­sium. And like toma­toes, pink water­melon con­tains free-radical fight­ing lycopene that pro­tects your cells from damage.

While wedges of water­melon are often served in the sum­mer, we like to puree the pulp and freeze it for cool treats when the weather is hot. Because water­melon is so sweet by itself, the only thing needed to make home­made ice pops is the water­melon, a paper cup, and a craft stick.

Water­melon Ice Pops

Yields: approx­i­mately 10 ice pops (depend­ing on the size of your cups, you may yield more or less)
Prep time: 10 min­utes + 6 hrs. freeze
Allergy info: soy-free, dairy-free, gluten-free

Ingre­di­ents:
1 (4 to 5-lb.) organic seed­less water­melon
12 paper cups or tall par­fait glasses (tall shot/dessert glasses)
Plas­tic wrap or foil
12 ice pop sticks

Direc­tions:
Remove col­ored flesh from the water­melon rind. Dis­card seeds, dice water­melon flesh. In the bowl of a food proces­sor add diced water­melon; pulse until smooth. Place a fine mesh strainer over a large bowl. Pour water­melon mix­ture into strainer. Using a spoon or spat­ula, press water­melon mix­ture through strainer; dis­card any seed pieces and large pieces of pulp.

Pour water­melon evenly into cups; cover tightly with plas­tic wrap. Using a sharp par­ing knife, make a small slit in the mid­dle of the plas­tic wrap. Poke ice pop sticks through plas­tic wrap.

Place cups in freezer. Freeze at least 6 hours; serve frozen. Store in the freezer, cov­ered, up to 3 weeks.