When the yard gives you blueberries, make blueberry syrup!

My husband’s mother has a blueberry bush- and it produces more blueberries than one person may know what to do with it. Luckily, she knows how to make jams and other fun things. However, there are times when we visit and are sent home with a very large tub of blueberries which we put in the freezer until we can find a use for them.

Alas, I found that not only can I use them to make blueberry pancakes (typical mix, just add some blueberries in) but I can now use a LOT to make the syrup as well.

What you’ll need

2 Cups blueberries (any type, just make sure you get rid of the stems and wash them properly before using)

1/3rd Cup pure maple syrup (not the fake stuff if you want to make sure it is gluten free)

1 Small saucepan

What you’ll do

  1. Put the small saucepan on the stove over low to medium heat
  2. Put in the blueberries (especially if frozen) and let them get warm. Stir them around and gently squeeze their juices out.
  3. Once you feel you have most of the yummy juice squeezed out, add the maple syrup.

Now you have a mushy blueberry syrup. Please see below for the next steps I take:

Optional

  1. Use a strainer to remove the blueberries so you just have a syrup left. Pour that over your pancakes.
  2. If you haven’t made the pancakes yet, you can take the blueberries and put them into your batter. Double blueberry goodness!

Let me know what you think!

Julie Conant Wallace

UG Dietetics Student

Breakfast Burritos

I don’t know about you but for me, breakfast truly is the most important meal of the day. When I wake up, I’m starving- which makes sense since the word itself, breakfast, implies a break from fasting from the last meal (or late night snack for some of us). Breakfast or brunch, if you are enjoying the luxury of sleeping in, is a meal that can help propel you through the rest of the day so it’s important for this meal to be nutritious! Some, myself included, believe that breakfast should be the larger meal of the day instead of dinner- but I believe it based on personal preference.

And so, I am sharing a very simple breakfast burrito recipe that is probably very common and extremely easy to adapt to your personal taste.

Breakfast Burrito (Vegetarian)

This version is aimed to be a good source of protein, a source of healthy fats, and low in sugar. Remember to check food labels when grocery shopping if you want to watch the calories, etc. for each ingredient item below:

What you’ll need: 4 servings

  • 4 whole eggs (personal preference: organic, cage-free vegetarian with omega-3 or from a local farm)
  • 4 egg whites
  • 4 tortillas (gluten-free options are available such as rice or corn tortillas; personal preference is a flavored wrap tortilla such as habañero lime from Trader Joe’s)
  • 2 Tablespoons of chopped fresh cilantro
  • 4 oz. can of green chilies
  • 1/8 avocado slice for each burrito or 1 oz avocado, mushed, or guacamole
  • 1/2 Cup of shredded cheeses such as Cheddar, Monterey jack, etc.
  • 1/4 onion

Other options:

  • Plain, non-fat, yogurt (personal preference: greek yogurt) in place of sour cream
  • 1 Cup of fajita-style veggies: green and red peppers, serrano or poblano peppers, olives, mushrooms, spinach, or any vegetable you enjoy
  • Salsa to taste (tomatillo salsa also known as salsa verde, corn salsa, or even a mango peach salsa can add flavor to this dish)
  • Seasonings or herbs such as Adobo seasoning, cumin, pepper, or salt to taste.
  • 3 ounces of lean meat or lean sausage (just make sure to cook it through properly first!)

How to make:

  • With low to medium heat, warm up a medium sized skillet and spray with canola oil spray. If you do not have canola oil spray, just use the canola oil or 1 teaspoon of unsalted butter (personal preference is to use Smart Butter brand)
  • Chop or dice up vegetables to desired consistency and place in medium skillet on low to medium heat until warm- about 5 – 10 minutes for fresh vegetables.
  • In a bowl, you will combine the eggs (whole and whites), green chiles, onion, cilantro, any seasonings you would like such as Adobo seasoning and whisk.
  • Add the egg mixture to the vegetables, stirring until the eggs are cooked through like scrambled eggs.
  • While the eggs are cooking, heat up your tortillas as desired: some people like to put them on a place, put damp paper towels in between, and heat them in the microwave. Another option is to place them in the oven and bake them. You can also warm them up on a skillet.

That was simple! Enjoy and let me know how it turns out for you!

Julie Wallace

Nutrition/Dietetics Student

I claim no credit in this recipe- it’s just healthy ingredients thrown together by trial and error as all of my meals are if made at home. = )

Carrot Cake…Carrot Cake Salad that is!

I love salad. All kinds! But not ones smothered in mayonnaise!

I especially love when a salad that taste like Carrot Cake. The traditional Carrot Salad is a simple mix of shredded carrots and raisins smothered in mayonnaise. That is taking something healthy and putting it in something not so healthy. The typical American Diet.

So what if you replaced the mayonnaise with yogurt and added a few more ingredients to make it tastes like Carrot Cake?

Now you are talking! This carrot salad is a wonderful concoction consisting of carrots, raisins, pineapple, walnuts, coconut, yogurt, and spices! It is great as a side dish or my favorite is to incorporate it into overnight oats (muesli) for breakfast! It is super healthy providing 100 hundred calories per serving, 4 grams of protein, about 3 grams of fiber, and 100% of your Vitamin A requirement for the day, which is necessary for cell growth, healthy vision, healthy hair, and healthy skin! And yes, it can make just about anyone like salad 🙂

Carrot Cake Salad

2 ½ cups of finely shredded carrots

1 6 oz plain Greek yogurt

1 ½  TBS of honey or maple syrup

¾ tsp of ground cinnamon

¼ tsp of ground nutmeg

1/3 cup of chopped and toasted walnuts, pecans, or almonds

1/3 cup crushed pineapple with juice

1/3 cup of raisins

¼ cup shredded coconut (optional)

Combine yogurt with spices and honey. Mix in all other ingredients. Refrigerate for at least 5 hours.

Now a salad you can enjoy that is delicious + healthy!

If you want to try it in overnight oats, soak 1/3 cup of raw certified gluten free oats in a 1/3 cup milk overnight. The next morning add 1/3 cup of yogurt, cinnamon, 1 tsp maple syrup, sprinkle of gluten free granola (for crunch), carrot cake salad and any other toppings you can think of! This is my all time FAVORITE breakfast!!!

Gluten Free Iced Pumpkin Oatmeal Raisin Cookies

 

That’s a long name right! I was in the mood for baking last Wednesday but also going over to my parents house to hang out with my mom and my nephew Caleb before it was time to head back to the big city for school. This girl would much rather spend her time relaxing in the country of South Georgia but Life University in Marietta is calling my name to FINISH my dietetics degree!

It was also my sister Lara’s birthday and she loves oatmeal cookies. Wouldn’t it be great to deliver her cookies to work on her birthday?!?! But I also had a lot of pumpkin leftover in the fridge from making Pumpkin Muffins….Hmmm….Pumpkin and cookies….Combine!

So this cutie pie, my nephew Caleb, was very willing to help me out as well. Well not really…But he did like banging on the pots and pans as my mom and I worked saying I want a coo coo! He didn’t like them. He ate sugar wafers instead. Seriously….

Everyone else loved them! Especially me…..I know you are dying to make them so let’s start with what you will need

Cream butter and sugar. Add egg, pumpkin, and vanilla (detailed recipe below)

Mix flour, spices, certified gluten free oats, baking soda, and then add raisins + nuts

Add dry ingredients to wet and mix!

Now drop by rounded tablespoon onto cookie sheet and bake away…

Next drizzle icing over your cookies (recipe follows as well)

Then enjoy a balanced afternoon snack…

What?!?!? I had an apple! Ok, ok, peanut butter would have been a better choice than the cookies but hey sometimes you just need a cookie! The key is portion control 🙂

Gluten Free Iced Pumpkin Oatmeal Raisin Cookies

1 cup gluten free white rice flour (or regular all-purpose if not on GF diet)

3/4 cup certified gluten free oats (or regular in not on GF diet)

1/2 tsp baking soda

1 tsp ground cinnamon

1/4 tsp ground nutmeg

3/4 stick of unsalted butter (6 Tablespoons)

3/4 cup packed brown sugar

1/4 cup granulated sugar

1/2 cup canned pure pumpkin

1 egg

1 tsp of vanilla

1 cup of mix ins (I chose 1/2 cup of walnuts and 1/2 cup of raisins. Anything will work: chocolate chips, any nuts, dried cranberries, dates, etc.)

Preheat oven to 350 F and coat a baking sheet with nonstick spray.

Cream butter and sugar with an electric mixer. Add egg and combine. Stir in pumpkin and vanilla.

Mix flour with oats, baking soda, and spices. Add walnuts and raisins or mix ins of choice.

Add dry ingredients to wet and mix well.

Drop by rounded tablespoon full onto cookie sheet. Bake for approximately 10 minutes or until golden brown. (I never time cookies, I just watch them!) Then let cool and ICE!

Sugar Icing

1 cup of powdered sugar

1 1/2 Tablespoons of milk

1/2 Tablespoon of melted butter

1/2 tsp of vanilla

Mix all ingredients well until drizzling consistency. If to thick add more milk. If to thin add more powdered sugar. DRIZZLE AWAY!

You can enjoy them while reading my friend Julie’s blog and checking out my post on Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease.

My Favorite Muffin

My Favorite Muffin

I love to bake! Spice muffins are just perfect for a fall breakfast or snack. and out of all the muffins I’ve made and ever tasted including blueberry, blueberry banana, carrot cake, banana nut bread, apple and brown sugar, raspberry, apple bran, cinnamon streusel, my favorite by far are Pumpkin Ginger Date Muffins! I got this recipe out of an insert that came with a Denise Austin DVD.

I bake them every fall. Ok I bake it a few times a year whether it is fall or not! My whole family loves this recipe as well. The muffins freeze well so you can be completely out of breakfast foods but then open your freezer to see this scrumptious concoction waiting on you. I promise you will be happier than a deer on the day after the closing of deer hunting season. Just kidding. (That’s for you Will)

A few ways to enjoy these muffins:

  • Plain!
  • With coffee or an espresso beverage
  • With cream cheese
  • With almond butter
  • With pumpkin butter
  • With almond and pumpkin butter
  • With a glass of milk
  • Crumbled over Greek yogurt

Ok I will not keep you waiting any longer! Here is the recipe:

Adapted from Denise Austin’s Personal Training System Diet and Recipe Booklet

Pumpkin Muffins

1 cup gluten free brown rice flour or regular all purpose flour
3/4 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1 1/4 tsp ground ginger
1 cup gluten free corn flakes, cheerios, or any plain cereal (or bran if not gluten free)
2/3 cup chopped dates
1/3 cup chopped walnuts
1 1/4 cups canned pure pumpkin
3/4 cup skim milk
1/3 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 cup canola oil
1 large egg

Preheat oven to 400F. Spray a 12 cup muffin pan with non-stick cooking spray.

In medium bowl, mix flour, baking soda, cinnamon, salt, baking powder, and ginger. Stir in dates, cereal, and walnuts.

In large bowl, mix pumpkin, milk, brown sugar, oil, and egg. Add the flour mixture to this mixture by folding in.

Bake for 17 to 20 min or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. I usually get about 18 muffins out of this recipe because I make them smaller but you could just make 12 larger muffins.

Ok I am off to enjoy a muffin! Are you?