Monday, November 29, 2010

Whole Wheat Honey Cut-out cookies

I made these cookies for Thanksgiving mostly to test how they would work out for Christmas cookies and they were pretty good. The orange gives them a great flavor and is a nice change from traditional sugar cookies. I suggest using my Cream Cheese/Honey Frosting recipe (click here) and then enjoy decorating!
Whole Wheat Honey Cut-Out Cookies
1/2 cup unsalted organic butter
3/4 cup honey
1/4 cup orange juice
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 cups traditional whole wheat flour
1/2 T flaxmeal
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
Beat the butter, sugar and salt in a medium bowl, then add the orange juice, vanilla, flour and baking powder. refrigerate for about 30 minutes.
Bake @ 350 about 8-10 Min until edges are golden

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Turkey Enchiladas Verde

Assuming I have turkey leftovers I plan on using them for what I usually do with chicken; Enchiladas Verde. Super easy, pretty healthy, and great to put in your freezer for a later date.

8 Corn tortillas (I use trader joes variety since they have a pretty pure ingredient list)
1 Can Black beans- rinsed and drained
1 Cup frozen corn
1 Cup shredded turkey
1/4 white onion chopped
Chopped cilantro
1 clove garlic minced
1 T Cumin
salt and pepper to taste
1/4 Cup Organic Sour Cream or Yogurt
1 Jar Salsa Verde (again, I used Trader Joes)
Shredded cheese to top (optional)
1. In a large skillet heat EVOO. Add onion and garlic. Saute about 5 min. Add corn, beans, cilantro, cumin, salt and pepper, and turkey. Heat, stirring frequently, about 5 min.
2. In a separate bowl mix sour cream and salsa verde
3. Heat corn tortillas wrapped in a damp papertowel in the microwave about 20 seconds.
4. Fill tortillas with bean/turkey mixture
5. Pour sauce on top, garnish with cheese.
6. Bake @350 about 30 min

Monday, November 22, 2010

DIY Monogrammed Fabric Storage Box

If you're a mom you know just how many diaper boxes you go through. Why not up-cycle them? I was in need of a new book storage box for my living room, so I created this frugal piece of loveliness;

Empty Diaper box (any box will do)
pillowcase or piece of material large enough to cover
No Sew Fabric Glue
Letter Stencil
Black Sharpie
Cut and fold material to fit box
Glue Material onto box
Tape stencil onto box and fill in desired letter
                                                                                 That's it! Enjoy your new storage box!

Friday, November 19, 2010

Turkey Day the Heartland Hippie Way

Below is our 2010 Thanksgiving menu along with my preparation timeline. Preparing as much in advance gives you the chance to truly enjoy the big day. Also, KEEP IT SIMPLE. Many people prepare far too much and far too many dishes. Instead focus on quality ingredients and fewer dishes. I used almost all organic ingredients and made everything from scratch for the first time this year. I can't wait to enjoy it all!
Appetizers: organic veggie/olive tray with yogurt "ranch" dip Recipe Here
Main Meal: 
Free Range Turkey
Fresh Triple-Sec Organic Cranberry Relish Recipe Here ( i did research and substitute with triple sec instead of the pricier Grand Marnier)
Sourdough Apple Cranberry Stuffing Recipe Here (not sure if I'll use sausage or not)
Mashed maple/soy sweet potatoes
Balsamic Glazed Asparagus
Hard Cider Gravy Recipe Here
Dessert: Pumpkin Cheesecake Recipe Here with homemade whipcream Recipe Here 

Thanksgiving timetable
Weekend Before: 
finalize your menu
purchase groceries
make sure you have all necessary equipment/tools/dishes, etc.
prep homemade whip-cream and freeze in dollops (this is amazing people) Freeze instructions here 
Prepare cranberry relish and refrigerate
Prepare yogurt dip and refrigerate
Make Pumpkin Cheesecake and refrigerate
Make Stuffing and refrigerate
If you got a frozen turkey begin thaw
Prep Sweet potatoes and refrigerate in crockpot container
Prep Veggie Tray
Thursday-Show Time: 4:30
thaw whip cream dollops
Prep asparagus
set table
12:15 PM- turkey in oven. Pull potatoes from refrigerator and let sit for about an hour
1- put potatoes in slowcooker set on low. stir often
2:30- bring veggie tray, cranberry sauce, stuffing, and asparagus to room temp
3(approx)- Turkey out of oven (you will want the turkey to rest about 45 min before you carve.
Guests arrive
3:30- cook stuffing
4- carve turkey, make gravy, put asparagus in oven
4:30- Give thanks and eat!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Tasty Tom- Our Sustainable Star of the Table

  I'm excited! This year will be my first "natural" Thanksgiving. Mr. Tom is the leading role of the show, so your turkey choice is a very important part of the meal. Did you know that most conventional US turkey's have been made to grow so quickly and unnaturally that they are unable to reproduce without human intervention?
  This year we casted a Ferndale Market Sustainable-Free-Range Turkey for the part. Yes, the turkey will cost a bit more (about 2.39/pound), but we only purchase once a year so it's a price we feel is worth paying. I realize that heritage breed turkeys are even more ideal birds but these run around a hundred bucks each.
We are what our food eats. Here's the job description for my family's ideal Tasty Tom:
     * Raised with the ability to feast and freely roam pastures as God made them to do
     * Not injected with hormones, saline, or, anything else unnatural
     * Consumes a natural diet
     * As locally grown as possible
If you're torn between "organic" and sustainable turkey, I'd suggest going with sustainable. Although sustainable farmers do not have to follow USDA organic guidelines, they usually exceed them and support the local community as well (besides you see how well the USDA does at their jobs...just read food news).
To purchase one of these healthy turkeys you may order online Here or search for a farm near you Here.

Useful Information:
Ferndale Market

Sustainable Table Turkey Article

Eat Wild

Friday, November 12, 2010

Friday Night Lite - Black Bean Burgers

Decided to try homemade black bean burgers for the first time. Most of the pre-made patties are full of stuff you don't need. Especially when they're so easy to make yourself! Serve them alongside Mama's Homemade Oven Fries (Click Here) and garnish with guacamole for a great Friday dinner.
Black Bean Burgers- Recipe adapted from
  • 1 (16 ounce) can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1/2 green bell pepper, cut into 2 inch pieces
  • 1/2 onion, cut into wedges
  • 3 cloves garlic, peeled
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon Thai chili sauce or hot sauce
  • 1/2 cup bread crumbs (i used oatmeal instead)
  • 1 T flaxmeal


  1. If grilling, preheat an outdoor grill for high heat, and lightly oil a sheet of aluminum foil. If baking, preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C), and lightly oil a baking sheet.
  2. In a medium bowl, mash black beans with a fork until thick and pasty.
  3. In a food processor, finely chop bell pepper, onion, and garlic. Then stir into mashed beans.
  4. In a small bowl, stir together egg, chili powder, cumin, and chili sauce.
  5. Stir the egg mixture into the mashed beans. Mix in bread crumbs until the mixture is sticky and holds together. Divide mixture into four patties.
  6. If grilling, place patties on foil, and grill about 8 minutes on each side. If baking, place patties on baking sheet, and bake about 10 minutes on each side.

I suggest refrigerating these in advance for easier assembly. You can also freeze pre-made patties.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Deals to sweeten your Monday

Here are a few links to some more great coupons. Happy Monday!

Pacific Natural
Coleman Natural (take the survey and get great coupons)
Kiss My Face Beauty Products

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

"Green" Clean Products = Waste of Green

   Don't be fooled by many of the "Green" cleaning products out there. The government does not regulate the claims made on these products and many have been found to emit hazardous chemicals. The "Household Product Labeling Act" (thank you Minnesota Senator) is in the process of being reviewed by the senate and would require companies list all ingredients on these products.
   What should you use? VINEGAR! 48 hours conducted a study and confirmed that vinegar actually kills 99.9% of bacteria. Many people are concerned with the strong scent, but once it dries not only does the smell dissipate, it actually absorbs other foul odors (we use it to absorb nursery odors as well).
    Click on the first link below for information on cleaning with vinegar and start saving your green!
How to use vinegar for almost anything:
Article about toxic green products:
48 Hours Vinegar/Heloise Article:

Monday, November 1, 2010

"Do you want your kids to be part of the experiment?"- Dr Oz

Some people can't seem to understand why I'm making all these changes in our household. Just how many studies or  prominent public figures will it take to get the message across?Government has all this information yet isn't doing much of anything to stop it. It is YOUR responsibility to protect your family and reduce their exposure.
Below is a link to an article with Dr Oz regarding the disturbing early puberty rates among our nations females. Diet, obesity, and chemicals are all possible culprits. Watch the video segments and take time to seriously evaluate your lifestyle.
Call me granola, call me crazy crunchy, but I sure as heck don't want my kids to be part of the "Experiment"