Sweet and salty dates to start

Sweet and salty dates

Whenever my Mom and Dad used to invite people over for dinner they always made something a little more special out of the ordinary besides the casual potato chips and nuts as a snickity snack before dinner.

Lets just say I grew up with quite the standards when it comes to hosting dinner parties. So the bar was set when I started hosting my own din din parties. 😉 And we so happened to have one last sunday. With a lot of casual snack and somewhat more out of the ordinary. Obvi.

We had homemade mango chutney with tortilla chips or spelt crackers, cherry tomatoes and dried tomatoes, olive, spelt breadsticks with olive tapenade and bresaola and… the nyummie babies below. Which were an absolute success. We ate dates this way in Italy a few weeks ago and I immediately decided to remake these as soon as possible when we got home.

So this was an excellent occasion to do just that. Ready in the blink of an eye and ahmagad they’re delicious!

You’ll need

  • Medjool dates (I took 2 per person)
  • Breasaola (or any other dried meat)
  • Goat cheese

Directions

Pit the dates and cut them in half.

Fill the each date with some goat cheese.

Wrap the meat around and secure with toothpick.

Done!*

Bon appetit,

xo, Kirsten

*you can pop them in the oven for a while to make the meat crunchy and to melt the goat cheese. But I don’t think it’s necessary. Might work in winter, but since our party was at 30°C we went for ‘the colder the better.

What’soup doc?

Creamy sweet tomato soup

When I come home from work, I’m usually starved to dead. Like: “Gimme some food NOW!”

Sadly, when I arrive home from work I (or the boyfriend) still have to prep us a meal from scratch. So, besides some cherry tomatoes or nuts to graze on, there wont be much food avail for my empty stomach. Lets be honest here: cherry tomatoes and two or three nuts don’t really turn a hungry belly into a foodbaby belly. And I don’t want to loose my appetite by snickity snacking too much appetizers before dinner (I mean, I plead guilty, it has happened before).

>> We do, however, always have all the necessary ingredients in house to make us dinner since we decide  on ‘the menu’ a week in advance and go to the supermarket only once a week to buy everything for the next week. We know what’s coming from friday until thursday. I avoid going to supermarkets on a daily base like the plague! Also, the everyday “what are we going to eat ce soir” convo’s aren’t my cup of tea. Oh and by the way, going to a supermarket on an empty stomach makes you buy shitty stuff. Just saying. I know some people find the whole ‘prepping a weekly menu’ über boring, and they want some more surprises and last minute decisions when picking dinner. But this is what works for me and the boyfriend. I can only recommend 😉 <<

But, I’m getting off track, back to the post work hunger prob:

A few days ago, all of a sudden, it dawned on me. I always kind of knew it was going to be the empty stomach solution, but I lazy-ass ignored it. Remaining a whining hangry (hungry + angry) woman cursing at the kitchen timer for being so dang slow (Hangry makes you pretty unreasonable to all things slow, not only to mention traffic jams).

Anyhow. My mom used to do it, my dad did, my grandparents did,… A CUP OF SOUP before dinner! It fills you up a tad bit, but not too much, so you still have room for dinner and you wont eat as much later on, since your tummy’s already filled with a soup layer. Win win if you ask me.

So, we had a little miscalculation in the tomato department last week. Read: I brought tomatoes, forgot we didn’t eat the ones we bought the week before and then I brought us some more tomatoes the week after with a buy one get two deal. Needless to say we had a lot of tomatoes. So what do you do with them besides having a tomato carpaccio with feta for lunch? That’s right! Tomato soup! Yum.

This recipe will rock your world because it’s creamy, sweet and super healthy. And easy peasy to prep on a sunday afternoon so you’re set for the week.

You’ll need

  • 1 onion
  • 1 sweet potato (about 200g)
  • 1 leek (only the white part)
  • 1 tbsp of coconut oil
  • 10 fresh tomatoes, peeled
  • handfull of cherry tomatoes
  • 1,5 l of water
  • 1 vegetable broth cube (preferably organic WITHOUT corn starch, or a homemade broth)
  • 1 tsp spicy curry
  • Some parsley or basil
  • salt and pepper
  • pinch of stevia
  • A bay leaf and thyme
  • Optional: some soy or greek yoghurt
Directions
chop the onion, sweet potato and leek finely. Stew them in a big pot with coconut oil.
Cut the (peeled) tomatoes into chunks and add them with the cherry tomatoes to the onion, potato and leek.
Moist with water and the broth cube. Add the spicy red curry too and a bay leaf and some thyme.
Leave to boil the lot for 35 tot 40 minutes.
Remove the bay leaf and thyme, and add a pinch of stevia to sweeten. Mix the soup with a hand blender and add some parsley or basil to finish.
If you want extra cream, you can add a tbsp of yoghurt to each bowl of soup you grab.
Bon pre-appetit!
xo, Kirsten

Dessert for breakfast: healthy crumble

Healthy breakfast crumble

I’m a morning sweet tooth. Bam. It’s out.

Basically that means that as soon as I wake up I crave a huge breakfast which preferably tastes sweet. Like, I’m down with eggs and bacon anytime, but I’ll love you eternally when you bring me pancakes in the morning.

So. We all know what tastes sweet. Desserts. And we all know the saying ‘eat dessert first’, right? Right. Well. What if I told you that you can start your entire dang day with a dessert. And that’s not all: You ladies can start your day with a healthy dessert. Are you also crying from happiness thanks to this discovery? I sure know I was. 😉

Anyways, Crumble might be in my top 3 of all time favorite desserts. But stuffed with crappy flour and loads of sugar and greasy butter, it certainly won’t make my top 3 all time favorite healthy desserts. Enters this version. Totally breakfast appropriate. I fell in love. Obvi.

So, here we are. I’m going to make you one happy ass sweet tooth with this recipe. You are welcome!

You’ll need (serves one)

  • 40g rolled oats (from Quaker. I used gluten free ones)
  • 2 tbsp of buckwheat flour (or spelt flour, or coconut flour)
  • Some raisins
  • 1,5 tbsp coconut oil
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup or honey/agave (or sweetner of your choice)
  • pinch of salt
  • pinch of stevia
  • an apple, peeled and cut into pieces
  • 100g frozen berries

Directions

Preheat the oven to 200°C.

Grease an oven bowl with some coconut oil. Add the fruit to the bowl.

Now mix the oats, raisins, buckwheat flour, coconut oil and maple syrup until you get a greasy, sticky mass. Or soon to be crumble.

Spread the crumble on top of the fruit in the bowl. (don’t mix it, it should be on top of your fruit)

Place the crumble in the oven for about 20 minutes (until the berries boil)

You can or can not add some yoghurt to this too. Just saying.

Enjoy!

xo, Kirsten

The sweetest chick

The sweetest chick

I’m all about healthy marinades. I mean, adding some extra taste to something by adding a good herb combo.. Why the hell not?

This recipe turns plain boring chicken into a super sweet chick. In a good way.

Matched with walnuts, rainsins and apples and (pan-fried) sweet potatoe fries on the side and we’ve got ourselves a Sunday-night-dinner-winner.

Oh and, would you look at my brand new black oven tray (slash tajine, it has a tajine lid. I die. Cooking galore!). Makes it look all the more appealing, if you ask me.

It takes up to an hour and a half to prepare the lot. So as mentioned before, it’s a Sunday dining kind of thing. Since it takes a while to prep. And we don’t like waiting for dindin on busy ass Mondays now do we? You can watch a movie or do a petite Friends marathon while your chick is in the oven!

You’ll need (serves 2)

  • 250 or 300g of chicken breast filet
  • 2 apples (I picked one green, Granny Schmidt and one red)
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 2 tsp cumin
  • walnuts
  • 1 tbsp coconut oil
  • 400g sweet potato

Directions

Preheat your oven to 180°C.

Mix two teaspoons of cinnamon with the cumin, salt and pepper and coconut oil. Rub your chicken with the cinnamon and cumin mixture.

Put the chicken breast in an oven tray and put in the oven for about an hour.

Meanwhile cut the apple in parts. I peeled them too, but that’s optional. If you want a bite, leave the peel. Put the apples in a bowl and add the walnuts and cinnamon. Grease the mixture with some coconut oil.

Add the nut and apple mixture to the chicken in the oven for the last 30 minutes.

Now peel the sweet potatoes and cut into fries. Steam them for 15minutes (I already did this part in the morning). Let it cool for a bit.

Put a pan on a heat and add the sweet potato fries. Bake for a few minutes until golden and brown.

Bon appetit.

xo, Kirsten

 

 

Sticky and skinny brownie bars

Sticky skinny brownie bars

When in a hurry and in need of a chocolate, sugary fix but preferably a healthy one: These babies are the answer to your cravings. Raw brownies made with the healthiest ingredients, so they are totally beach – and bikini body proof.

Better to munch on these than to devour the real fat-ass, gross brownie-deal. But I don’t need to tell you guys that, right?

I prepped these the night before and they gave me a warm (mmkay: cold) welcome in the a.m., when I opened the fridge. Sweet coconut chocolate pieces of heaven! I don’t know how I managed to do so, but I kept them in an airtight container in my cool bag the whole dang day and only ate them as a dessert at my mom’s place later that day. That’s right, I love to share my healthy stuff! 😉

 I often bring dessert on my weekly Tuesday night dinners with mom. So safe to say she’s one of the first hand test persons for all my clean, sweet kitchen trials.  Well anyways: She liked them. So they’re mommie proof! 😉

It’s not because they are clean, nutritious and healthy that you get to eat the whole lot, though. Moderation is key, ladies. Unless it’s that time of the month, than go ahead and grab two pieces. I wont kiss and tell. But to the rest of you a petite warning is in order: they’re still quite big on the calorie department. So you don’t get to eat an endless amount. However, you WILL notice a difference if you would devour the same amount of calories from a plain unhealthy brownie (don’t!). Bloated belly much?

Ok, enough with the health bla-di-bla. Without any further ado the recipe to your chocolate happiness:

You’ll need

  • 250g of pitted medjool dates
  • 200g of walnuts (or pecans)
  • 50g raw cacao
  • 50g shredded coconut
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup
  • 1 tsp Himalaya pink salt
  • 2tbsp of water

Directions

Add the walnuts to a food processor and shred them until they turn to flour. Add the dates to the nut flour and mix/shred.

Now add the coconut, cacao, pink salt and maple syrup to the food processor and mix with the walnuts and dates.

Add some water to make them moist.  After a while you’ll receive a big sticky chunk of brownie dough.

Add a baking sheet in a brownie mold and add the dough to it. Press the batter in the shape.

Add some shredded coconut on top to finish and put in the fridge for about an hour, or overnight, like I did.

* Servings: Depends on how big you want your pieces, but I had about 12. According to my calculations that would be about 228 kcal per brownie. Perf with a cup of tea as a small dessert or could work as a 10 o’clock snack (it sure worked for me).

** If you prefer your brownies fresh out of the oven but clean, this recipe might work for you too.

Enjoy!

Xo, Kirsten

Skinny sticky brownies

Clean, green Risotto goodness

Clean Green Risotto

Risotto might be the best way to eat rice. The tastiest way to eat rice too.

But it’s also def the unhealthiest way to eat rice. That is if you plan on using wine, loads of parmesan and cream to prep the risotto.

Gwynneth Paltrow, ex miss Chris Martin a.k.a Colplay’s lead singer, decided you don’t really need those ingredients to make this Italian delight for dinner. This recipe is based upon Gwynneth Paltrow’s recipe.. But I doubled the portions. I mean, I need food to get me going through the day. If I only eat that, I’ll be one cranky hungry bitch. And my boyfriend might wonder when the main will be coming? But if you are a small eater, divide by two or perhaps eat with three.

I also altered some ingredients. And that’s why it’s allowed on cupcakesandbeans. Because I’ll only post something when I altered something and I’ll always link back and never plain copy paste. That being said, here is the yummie green and healthy risotto recipe. Oh, it’s veggie. But feel free to add some shrimp or calarmari. Or don’t. Up to you!

You’ll need (serves 2, about 450 kcal pp)

  • 200g risotto rice (or quinoa if you want. In that case: make sure you cook it first)
  • 1 leek
  • 1 yellow onion
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • Thyme
  • 750ml broth (I used an organic, corn starch free, veggie broth cube)
  • 150g of frozen spinach
  • 200g green peas
  • 1/2 a lemon and lemon zeste
  • 1 tbsp coconut oil (or olive oil)
  • salt and pepper
  • A handful of basil leaves

Directions

Remove the outer leaves from your leek. Cut the white and light green part into small rings. Make sure you rinse it well.

Chop the onion finely.

Prep your broth. I boiled 750ml of water and added the broth cube.

Put a pan on a heat with some coconut oil.

Add the onion and leek and leave to simmer for five minutes. Now add the garlic and thyme and stir well with the onion and leek mix for another two minutes.

Add the risotto rice and the juice from half a lemon. Stir for three minutes and make sure your rice doesn’t stick to you pan in the meanwhile.

Add a big dash of broth to the mixture and stir well. Repeat the process until the risotto is cooked and you’re out of water. This is a tad bit time consuming, but it’s so very worth it. It takes you up to 15minutes in the end. Rough guess.

Add the lemon zeste, spinach, peas and basil to the pan and mingle with the other ingredients. Your vegetables will warm through the risotto.

Add some salt and pepper, to taste.

 

Bon appetit health birds!

xo, Kirsten

Bodylicious Protein Pancakes

Protein Pancakes

If you are anything like me and follow millions of health blog and Instagram profiles you might have been introduced to some ‘protein powder’ pictures and posts. Either in a plain boring shake/smoothie form or maybe in mouth watering pancakes or cupcakes versions.

Usually it states that if you want a ‘toned body’, you’ll need a lot of protein… Stating that they seem to make your muscles grow like it’s nobody’s business. Assuming you did an exhausting workout first, that is. Proteins don’t make miracles happen, they can’t make anything grow if you don’t train ‘them’ first. (sadly, I know)

I usually get proteins from chicken, fish, lentils, quinoa, eggs and yoghurt. Like most of us plain mortals do. You know. A plate filled with some greens, proteins, carbs and healthy fats is the usual healthy thing to do. But, I was triggered with the protein powder quick fix option a while back.

We so happened to have a big (and I’m talking huge) pot of ‘One Whey Protein Powder’ gathering dust in our kitchen cabinets (a leftover fitness thing from my boyfriend). We had it, so there really wasn’t an excuse for me not to try it.

So one morning, after a 5K run, I made protein pancakes based on a recipe from Tone It Up. And boy were they tasty. Yeah. Healthy pancakes, we all know I’m game for these kind of things.

Meanwhile, I learned that ‘One Whey PP’ is a shitty product. Read: they use all kinds of nasty ass processed stuff to make the powder. Even aspartame. Yuk. Not really something that fits my ‘clean eating’ way of life.

Luckily for my healthy-ass there are brands out there that produce all natural and organic, stevia based powders. Ideal for your post workout smoothies, pancakes and cupcakes. Mine is a Vegan (no cow milk stuff in this one, grrrreat) version from SunWarrior that has a vanilla smell and taste to die for. Vanilla pancakes: yum!

If you don’t care to follow the protein craze you can easily substitute the protein powder with plain flour or nut flour in this recipe.

Another thing I want to have said: do not fear turning into a bulky, man-looking, female-fitness athlete after using a scoop of protein powder every once in a while:

You’ll need to do a whole lot of fitness, for several hours, like 24-7, on a daily base before you’ll even remotely look like one of them. Woman don’t tend to gain muscles that easily because these babies need testosterone. And guess what: us ladies don’t have all that much testosterone going on inside of our bod. And if you do see a lady with huge arms and legs, you bet your ass something fishy is going on there!

You’ll need (serves 1, about 350kcal)

  • One ripe banana
  • 2 tbsp almond milk (or any milk you like)
  • 1 tbsp of sparkling water
  • 2 egg whites
  • 15g protein powder
  • 5g flaxseeds (or 20g protein powder if you skip these)
  • cinnamon (to taste)
  • 1 tbsp of coconut oil (for baking)
  • Fruit and toppings (maple syrup, sugar, yoghurt, chocolate spread,…)

Directions

Mix the banana or mash with a fork until you get a batter.

Add some almond milk and egg whites. Add some sparkling water (trust me, this will make the batter so good and fluffy)

Now gently mix through the protein powder and flaxseeds until you get a thick batter. Add some cinnamon.

Heat a pan on a high heat. Add some coconut oil. Make sure your pan is really heated.

Add two to three tbsp of the batter to the pan (think American pancake sizes). Bake for a few minutes on each side. Usually when the batter starts to boil a bit it’s time to flip. Repeat until you’re out of batter.

Now add your favorite toppings. I usually add some heated frozen berries, a big tbsp of maple syrup (yum), and some yoghurt.

Pancake LOVE!

Bon appetit!

xo, Kirsten