Thursday, 17 January 2019

Print

Triple Green Smoothie


Ingredients:
1. 1 apple de-cored cut into smaller chunks
2. 1 orange peeled and cut into smaller chunks
3. 1 cup (30g) baby spinach
4. 1 cup (30g) kale
5. 1/2 cup (15g) parsley
6. 1 tsp ginger finely cut
7. 1 tsp flax seeds
8. 1 cup fresh skimmed milk

Directions:
Add all ingredients into a blender and blend until smooth.

Additional Information:

This smoothie contains three greens, namely spinach, kale and parsley. Thus, I name it Triple Green Smoothie.

Although spinach and Kale are both super greens, they complement each other with a different strong concentration of vitamins and minerals. I have done a comparison below based on 100g raw vegetables. Click to enlarge picture:


Therefore, it is good to have a bit of both in your green smoothie. Spinach is very mild, thus, most people are able to accept spinach in their smoothie. Actually, I don't notice or taste much of the kale in my smoothie. Perhaps, I am so used to green smoothie already. If you are new to having vegetables in your smoothie, you can start by adding only spinach. Once you can accept it, move on to adding kale. You will realize that you won't notice any difference. The sweetness from the apple and orange will cover up any vegetable taste :-)

But if you absolutely have to pick up, then choose spinach. They have the most no. of vitamins and minerals, and are more readiness available than kale, if not even cheaper too.

And Parsley is a super herb too. Below is the nutritional information of the triple greens. Click to enlarge picture:

Tuesday, 15 January 2019

Print

Double Green Smoothie

Recipe adapted from Pick Up Limes

Ingredients:
1. 1 ripe banana, peeled, fresh or frozen
2. 1 apple, de-cored and cut into smaller cubes
3. 1 large orange, peeled, quartered
4. 1/4 cucumber, quartered
5. 1 Tbsp (10g) fresh ginger chopped
6. 1/2 cup (15g) spinach
7. 1/2 cup (15g) parsley
8. 1 cup (250mL) fresh skimmed milk

Toppings:
1. 1 TBS (15g) chia seeds

Directions:
Add all ingredients to a blender and blend until smooth. Sprinkle with chia seeds, shake or stir the seeds in, serve and enjoy immediately.

Additional Information:
I mentioned the green smoothie in an earlier post. Apology, this is the only picture I have of it. You probably can guess from the picture, that this breakfast tray was specially made for Daddy FECS, and even a little belated on a weekend (13 Jan 2019). In between a jumping toddler, I only managed to make this very simple breakfast, and it even took me more than an hour!!! Yes, that is life right now for me - very unproductive. And I didn't even made it all myself. The egg was made by our Little FECS - thanks son for saving mommy's day. Life with kids, ya, you don't get anything done, even on a birthday.

Our Little FECS and Baby FECS actually loved the green smoothie... they actually finished most of it that there wasn't much left for Daddy FECS, so I don't know whether Daddy FECS like it or not... aarrrgghhh kids! But then I repeated it again the following day... and they didn't want to drink it. Okie, okie, I got it - good things shouldn't be repeated. Either they had gotten enough of it, or they just wanted to give me face on their daddy's birthday. They didn't like the chia seeds so much. So I will have to alternate between the chia seeds and leave it out on some days.

This smoothie contains two greens, namely spinach and parsley. Thus, I name it Double Green Smoothie.

References:
https://www.pickuplimes.com/single-post/2017/01/11/Cold-Busting-Green-Smoothie
Print

Red Smoothie

Adapted from Pick Up Limes
Ingredients:
1. 1 apple de-cored quartered
2. 1 orange peeled and cut
3. 1 beet root cut into chunks
4. 1 banana
5. 1 tsp flaxseeds
6. 2 cup (60g) baby spinach
7. 1/4 cup (15g) parsley
8. 1 cup skimmed fresh milk

Toppings:
1. A sprinkling of rolled oats

Directions:
Add all ingredients into a blender and blend until smooth.

Additional Information:
I mentioned about the green, red and orange smoothie as a start to our morning for the kids (and the adults). Our kids like this smoothie better than the green smoothie I made yesterday. Instead of some granola, I sprinkled some rolled oats on top for crunch and to make it more filling. It's actually quite nice, but be careful not to overdo it. I overdone it for the second glass, and got tired of the rolled oats.

I am amazed again, how I don't notice the parsley. The sweetness from the apple and orange completely overpowered the parsley and the spinach :-)

The nutrients from ground flaxseeds are easier to absorbed by the body. Thus, I added into the blend, rather than sprinkle it on top.












Print

Chocolate Milkshake Smoothie

Recipe adapted from Pick Up Limes

Makes 2 large glasses or 4 small glasses

Ingredients:
1. 1.5 cup skimmed fresh milk
2. 2 TBS cacao powder
3. 2 TBS hazelnut butter
4. 1 tsp vanilla powder/ vanilla sugar
5. 1 ripe fresh or frozen banana
6. 1/2 avocado
7. 1 TBS natural yogurt (optional)
8. 1 date for the crunch

Directions:
Add all ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth.

Additional Information:
Notice that the first 4 ingredients are for making chocolate milk. When banana, avocado and yogurt are added, viola... you get a nice and nutritious chocolate smoothie :-) But if I don't have the time, or ran out of ingredients, I will simply just make the chocolate milk.

Btw, if you add more avocado, this milkshake will turn into chocolate pudding - try it too :-) Just adjust the desired sweetness accordingly.

This chocolate smoothie is nice for a weekend treat, when our kids have drank their daily green, red or orange smoothie during the week. When they have drank their green smoothie, they get each a stamp. When they have collected 5 stamps, they each get a chocolate smoothie as a reward :-) If I start on a Monday, they will get a chance to save up 5 stamps for their chocolate smoothie on Saturday :-)

Occasionally, I will want to try to remember to blend in 1/4 teaspoon of cinnamon powder into the chocolate smoothie, because cinnamon powder is very good for health too, although it is important not to overdose it.

The avocado makes it real creamy and rich, but you won't even know that it is there. The same goes for the 1 TBS of natural yogurt, you won't notice that it is there :-)



This chocolate smoothie provides a good combination of healthy fat, protein, carbohydrates and gut-healthy good bacteria from the yogurt.

You can sprinkle some goji berries and chia seeds on it to get in some of the antioxidants, although I prefer my chocolate beverage purely chocolate beverage... again, it is a life habit that I find it hard to change... but I am making this change for the next generation, by introducing them early to our kids, while they can still be molded.

And what about Daddy FECS? He doesn't like cakes, chocolates and sweets. So this chocolate smoothie won't tempt him at all :-) I wish I am half like him. But now, for all the other FECS in the family, we can have our chocolate and eat it... of course, still in moderation.

And lastly, you can also make this real luxurious by using vanilla beans. It will make it absolutely HEAVENLY. But since we reckon that this will be quite a regular treat at home, and since we are not loaded like kings and queens, we will make do with vanilla powder on regular days and only serve it using real vanilla beans to the birthday boy or girl on a birthday :-)

15 Jan 2019 (2Y8M30D): Baby FECS is beaming and getting all excited at getting her first chocolate smoothie. Within minute, the chocolate smoothie is emptied and she aske for a second glass. Like most moms, I wrestle with bad conscience each time she asks for a second helping of sweet treat, feeling torn between wanting to please her kids and letting them enjoy life, and being concern about their long-term life-shaping health habits. In her 2,5 years of age, she had so far only got to try once store-bought chocolate milk. But now I can relax a little, since this chocolate smoothie is sweetened only with fruit.


15 Jan 2019 (9Y10M10D): It's rare I get to take a picture of our Little FECS nowadays, as he is growing up and along with it, growing increasingly camera-shy. But today I managed to get a snap :-)

But he promised me though that he will allow me to record a video of him demonstrating Montessori Maths long division using racks & test tubes, so I hope it will come true... :-)
Print

Chocolate Milk


Makes 2 glasses

Ingredients:
1. 1.5 cup skimmed fresh milk
2. 2 TBS cacao powder
3. 2 TBS hazelnut butter
4. 1 ripe banana fresh or frozen or 1 tsp vanilla powder (optional)

Directions:
Add all ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth.

Additional Information:
This chocolate milk is relatively healthier, as it does not contain any sugar, except from the banana. Besides providing the sweetness, the banana also makes it extra creamy. Chocolate milk is a rare treat at our home, but that might be changing... if you absolutely cannot do without sugar or dislike banana, use 1 tsp of maple syrup or add 1-3 dates in place of the banana.

Monday, 14 January 2019

Print

Green Yogurt

Recipe adapted from Pick Up Limes
Serve 4

Ingredients:
1. 1 ripe banana, peeled, fresh or frozen
2. 1 apple, de-cored and cut into smaller cubes
3. 1 large orange, peeled, quartered
4. 1 TBS (10g) fresh ginger chopped
5. 1/2 cup (15g) spinach
6. 1/2 cup (15g) parsley
7. 1/2 cup (250mL) natural yogurt
8. 1 TBS (15g) mixed seeds such as chia seeds

Directions
1. Add all ingredients to a blender (except yogurt) and blend until smooth.
2. Prepare your bowls with natural yogurt in it.
3. Pour some of it on top.
4. Sprinkle with mixed seeds and raisins and serve :-)

Additional Information:
I made this today. I am very surprised that we can't taste the parsley at all. I also save a portion the green yogurt into a small glass container that goes into the lunch boxes:

Sunday, 13 January 2019

Print

J's Lunch Box

 14 Jan 2019:  Baby FECS and Little FECS each has this lunch box for tomorrow

1st layer clockwise from left: rye bread topped with no-bake peanut butter oatmeal cookie, grapes, prunes & red pepper bells, strawberries, blueberries & strawberries, carrots & cucumber sicks and smoked salmon sprinkled with dill on rye bread

2nd layer clockwise from left: Green yogurt sprinkled with cranberries, edamame drizzled with olive oil, salt & dried basil, pears, sweet peas,  1/4 piece of left-over no-bake nutella oatmeal cookie (the mouse, i.e. me, has broken half of it and ate it :-P) and almonds, raisins & goji berries
Print

J's Lunch Box

11 Jan 2019

Top from left: Left-over broccoli lagsane sprinkled with cheddar cheese and fried onions, edamame drizzled with olive oil, salt and dried basil, carrott sticks

Bottom from left: Mixed nuts of almonds, pecans, walnuts, goji berries and dried fig and cucumber (second layer not shown), baby spinach, blueberries (second layer not shown), rye bread spread with homemade nutella enriched with sunflower seeds and sliced apples (second layer not shown)
Print

Quick & Nutritious No-Bake Peanut Butter Oatmeal Cookies



Ingredients:
1. 2 TBS peanut butter enriched with sunflower seeds
2. 1 TBS rolled oats
3. 1 tsp maple syrup (or honey or sugar)

4. Decorate with dried cranberries (optional)
5. Decorate with vanilla sugar (optional)

Directions:
1. Add all ingredients, mix them together and press it into cookie size.
2. Top with dried cranberries (optional)
3. For those with extra sweet tooth, sprinkle with vanilla sugar (optional)
4. Ready to serve or refrigerate overnight

Additional Information:
Here is another quick and nutritious snack idea for lunch boxes made with oats. I top it with dried cranberries, which is Baby FECS' favorite. For Baby FECS who is a sweet tooth, I also sprinkled it with a touch of vanilla sugar. It is now ready to go into the lunch boxes for the kids for tomorrow morning :-)

It can also serve as topping for Danish rye bread:



Pictorial Illustration:


1 tsp maple syrup (or honey or sugar)

1 TBS rolled oats

 Mix them together and press it into cookie size.

 2. Top with dried cranberries (optional)

3. For those with extra sweet tooth, sprinkle with vanilla sugar (optional)

4. Ready to serve or refrigerate overnight in lunch box

Saturday, 12 January 2019

Print

Quick & Nutritious No-Bake Nutella Oatmeal Cookies



Ingredients:
2. 1 part rolled oats

Directions:
1. Mix them together and press it into cookie size.
2. Refrigerate overnight to set them (or you can also eat it immediately :-))

Additional Information:
This is very fast to make and great for lunch boxes. I made my cookie quite dense with oats, as you can see from the picture. It actually still tasted very good and very chocolaty. But if you prefer more of the chocolate portion, reduce the amount of oats accordingly.

Personal Journal:
I am reluctant to add any store-bought chocolate biscuits or the Danish chocolate pålæg into our kids' lunch boxes. All these years, I have never once done so, and J is coming to 10 years old this year. But I can feel that the day is closing in on me, unless I do something, especially with Baby FECS, who is only 2.5 years old, but has a sweet tooth already. My chances of succeeding with her is quite slim, but I don't want her to develop a taste for the commercial sugary milk chocolate pålæg, but at the same time, I do not wish to keep chocolates away from her. Thus, I am trying out this easy homemade snack option. It actually tasted really good and the kids love it as occasional sweet treat.

Pictorial Illustration:

 1 part rolled oats


Mix them together and press it into cookie size.
Print

Steel-cut Oatmeal

Oatmeal made of steel-cut oats
Ingredients:

1. 1/2 cup steel-cut oats (70g)
2. 1 cup fresh skimmed milk
3. Salt to taste

Directions:

1. Add 1/2 cup steel-cut oats into a pot.
2. Add 1 cup fresh skimmed milk and a pinch of salt to taste.
3. Bring to boil slowly on medium heat (no. 4 on my stove), stiring occasionally.
4. Once is starts boiling lightly, let it cook for approx. 3 minutes. Or you can even remove it from the stove now and let the remaining heat in the pot continue to cook the oats.
5. Remove from stove and if you have the time, let it rest for 5 minutes to absorb all the liquid from the milk, otherwise, it is good to serve now.
6. Serve it in a bowl on its own or with some chopped nuts and seeds. You can also add some berries or fruit or even drizzle a bit of honey, if you have a sweet tooth :-)

Additional Information:

I recently discovered steel-cut oats from watching a Brightside youtube video, and have fallen madly in love with it. It tastes SO SO good - has a chewy texture and a nutty taste to it. Why didn't I discover it earlier!!! As a result, our kids are starting to like oats again. Recently, I have had a bit of a challenge getting our kids to eat their morning oatmeal, as they got so tired of rolled oats and its mushy texture. Thus, this discovery couldn't have come more timely :-). What a saviour :-)

Steel-cut oats is basically whole oats that are cracked, but not flattened like rolled oats, and thus it is less processed. The picture on the left shows steel-cut oats and the picture on the right shows rolled oats. 

Left: Steel-cut oats                                 Right: Rolled oats

Steel-cut oats retains the same amount nutrients as rolled oats, if not even more. You basically cook it with one part steel-cut oats and two parts liquid, whether it is cooking it with milk or water. But cooking it with milk, even with skimmed fresh milk, makes it so much creamer than cooking it with water. Add just a little salt to taste and it is delicious on its own :-)

If I have carving for full-fat fresh milk, I sometimes cheat a little and cook it with full-cream fresh milk, but most of the time, skimmed fresh milk is good enough for me. Or I will scoop a port of the cooked steel-cut oats and eat it with some milk poured into it and add some chopped nuts and berries.

The only draw-back is that steel-cut oats is 3-4 times more expensive than rolled oats, and is only found in the health food stores in Denmark. But I reckon that as it becomes more common, it will soon be introduced in the supermarkets and the price will go down.

Some measurements that suit our family:

1/4 cup fully leveled off = 35g = 0.5 dl = 1 person
1/3 cup fully leveled off = 50g = 1 persons
1/2 cup fully leveled off = 70g = 1 dl = 2 persons
1 cup almost leveled off = 140g = 2 dl = 4 persons


Half-cup steel-cut oats

 1. Add 1/2 cup steel-cut oats into a pot.

 2. Add 1 cup fresh skimmed milk and a pinch of salt to taste.
3. Bring to boil slowly on medium heat (no. 4 on my stove), stiring occasionally (takes about 5-10 mins)
4. Once is starts boiling lightly, let it cook for approx. 3 minutes. Or you can even remove it from the stove now and let the remaining heat in the pot continue to cook the oats.
5. Remove from stove and if you have the time, let it rest for 5 minutes to absorb all the liquid from the milk, otherwise, it is good to serve now.

 Now it's done :-) Could you see the whole grain in-tact and not mushy. Adjust the the thickness and consistency as desired by adding some milk.

6. Serve it in a bowl on its own or with some chopped nuts and seeds. I like to add sunflower seeds.

You can also add some berries or fruit or even drizzle a bit of honey, if you have a sweet tooth :-)

Friday, 11 January 2019

Print

Easy Peanut Butter Enriched with Sunflower seeds

Ingredients:

1. 1 jar peanut butter
2. A handful of sunflower seeds

Directions:

Just hand a handful of sunflower seeds into the peanut butter. It can store for months in the fridge. 



Additional Information:

I still can't get enough of sunflower seeds, and here is another tasty way of getting sunflower seeds into our diet, especially for C. I have made this batch tonight ready for breakfast tomorrow.

I am inspired by this Youtube video by Pick up Limes, an incredible young lady. Watch it :-) 

Print

Easy Homemade Nutella Chocolate-Hazelnut Spread Enriched with Sunflower Seeds


11 Jan 2019: Homemade Nutella spread on rye bread enriched with sunflower seeds for the tea time with the kids.

Ingredients:

1. 1 jar hazelnut butter
2. 2 TBS cacao powder
3. A handful sunflower seeds
4. Vanilla sugar to taste

Directions:

1. Remove some of the hazelnut butter that you bought from the jar.

2. Stir in 2 TBS of cacao powder (I find it easiest to stir in such a jar with a pair of chopsticks... maybe because I am Chinese..., I use chopsticks as tools for many things)

3. Add in the sunflower seeds and sitr (optional, but sunflower seeds adds so much crunch and nutrients. And C doesn't like sunflower seeds, unlike J, but she would eat them if they are added to nutella)

4. Add vanilla sugar to taste (I can do without it, but the kids like it sweet. For us, 3 tsp is sweet enough). You can substitute vanilla sugar with 3 tsp of maple syrup.

If you really want to make it luxurious, use real vanilla beans (crushed with sugar to bring out the flavour), and add it to the mixture.

Storage:

Can keep for weeks outside the fridge and months in the fridge.


9Y
Additional Information:

C is a bit of a challenge. While J insists of eating rye bread with no butter, and didn't mind having vegetable puree spread on his rye bread through his early childhood, C goes only for the sweet stuff even as a toddler. So I have decided to try out making homemade Nutella for a healthier choice made from pure hazelnut butter and cocoa powder. 

I added sunflower seeds to the Nutella. Sunflower seeds is a understated super food. It contains more nutrients than most nuts, taste like nut, but a lot cheaper than nuts. I usually only buy the organic ones, but it still costs only a fraction of the price of nuts.

Many recipes use hazelnuts. I would love to try it someday, but for now as a super busy mom, this easy quick recipe using nut butter is more doable with our current family situation.

Since I have some skimmed milk powder, I also added 2 tablespoons of it. But it is totally unnecessary.

References:



11 Jan 2019 (9Y10M6D, 2Y7M25D): Some approval from the kids for the homemade Nutella butter :-) And C is eating her sunflower seeds... hurray :-)
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

My Favourite Books

Montessori Materials