Super Orange Juice


Superfood Orange Juice Mary Riley Photography LLC Wentzville Missouri

Good morning everyone!  It was a little disappointing this morning after yesterday’s beautiful “hamster sized snowflakes” fell from the sky.

Kids in the Snow Mary Riley Photography Wentzville Missouri

But, this smoothie will make up for that!

This smoothie was created to use up my favorite super foods in the refrigerator and to keep us all healthy this month.  It seemed many were falling down with the flu or stomach bug, so we threw in our super foods, blueberries and spinach, and made it taste great with my biggest smoothie secret — the rind.

My kids love orange juice.  Most do.  And this smoothie tastes like orange juice!  Why?  Because I throw in half the rind of one orange (cut up into 1″ pieces).  The Vitamix blends that all together into one smooth smoothie.

I serve these often when we make “brinner”.  It’s difficult to find veggies to go with some power protein waffles… but the smoothie has vegetables, fruit and tastes great with the menu.  Plus it is fast and easy with little clean up!

Superfood Orange Juice 2 Mary Riley Photography Wentzville Missouri

**Smoothie Tips**

After many, many days of smoothies I have discovered a few things:

  1.  The blender does better if the frozen fruit thaws for 5 minutes or so.  Or if you are impatient like me, put in the microwave on high for 1 minute.
  2. The banana can make or break your smoothie!  Yeah a banana.  If there aren’t enough sweet components, a banana can make your smoothie awesome.  But if your banana has a lot of brown spots, the banana taste can really overpower everything.  I like my banana yellow with no brown in smoothies.  That way some of the starches have converted to sugars, but the super sweet banana flavor doesn’t overpower the entire smoothie.
  3. If the smoothie is not cold enough – add a cup of ice!  Smoothies taste better cold to me anyway.
  4. If the smoothie doesn’t taste great, add a quarter of a lemon or half of an orange – the rind and all.  This gives the smoothie a clean, fresh taste.
Super Orange Juice
Author: Mary Ellen P. Riley / Whisk Together
Prep time:
Total time:
Serves: 2 large smoothies
Ingredients
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 1 banana, cut in half (optional)
  • 1/2 cup blueberries
  • 2 cups mango, 1″ chunks
  • 2 handfuls baby spinach
  • 1 orange, remove rind and cut orange into fourths
  • 1 half of the orange rind, cut into 1″ chunks (you should have about 3 or 4)
  • 1 cup ice (optional)
Instructions
  1. Add the ingredients as listed or recommended on your blender.
  2. I put my machine on “Smoothie” and hit start. For non-smoothie blenders, start slow. After about 30 seconds, turn the machine up slowly to high. Stop the machine and use a spoon to push items down towards the blades if needed. The smoothie should form a tornado for 30-60 seconds and you will know then it is ready.
  3. Add ice to make it colder. I always add ice especially if my ingredients are not frozen.
Notes
I really like Cara Cara oranges in this recipe for their texture and flavor. Any orange will do as long as it is juicy and looks fresh. [br]If you are purchasing just a few lemons or oranges for smoothies, consider buying organic ones. I am not a huge organic fanatic by any means, but it does make sense to try if you are buying them just for smoothies since the skin is being consumed.

 

 

10 Days of Green Smoothies

Green-Lemonade-2457-on-Whisk-Together

 

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I received the book “Simple Green Smoothies” for Christmas.  The kids and I have been having a blast with finding new green smoothie combinations!

So, this 10 day smoothie challenge consists of 1 green smoothie per day  for 10 days.  The book includes a grocery list for days 1-5 and 6-10.  This is because most produce like bananas would be past their prime before day 10.

Real Results:
1.  I lost 1 pound.  I weighed myself on day 1 and then day 7 just for fun.  Dropped from 138 lbs to 137 without changing any diet or exercise routine.
2.  The kids got their fruit and veggies every day (me too of course!).
3.  We never got sick.  (well the sample size of 3 people is quite small, but hey, it’s a positive!)

My notes about the smoothies:
1.  If the ingredients were not available fresh, I bought them frozen from Trader Joe’s.
2.  Blackberries were very tasty 🙂  They are on sale in many stores right now.
3.  To make a smooth smoothie, make sure to let the blender form a tornado and blend that for about a minute.
4. Put in the ingredients from first to last:  liquids (water, almond milk), spinach/leafy greens, nuts/flaxseed, chunks of fruit, ice.  This order blends the liquid properly and allows the heavier fruit to fall and blend into the smoothie.
5.  Add ice to make it cold.
6.  Spinach about to go bad?  Freeze it!  I add mine to freezer bags all of the time.  It is easy to blend, keeps the nutrients from breaking down and I don’t have to worry about having spinach on hand each week.
7.  Use orange peel or lemon peel for a citrus zing!  I love this trick and it really cuts down on the bitterness of the greens.  This is the trick for our Green Lemonade.  I had to increase the orange peel to a 1.5″ square.
8.  Kids love grape juice?  Try blending red grapes in the blender with some water.  Totally natural!  Add some spinach and they may not even notice it’s there.
9.  Use pint jars with lids for easy storage.
10.  No time in the morning?  Pack the recipes in bags, jars or containers at night!  Then, all you have to do in the morning is dump some water and the contents of the bag into the blender.  Stick in a straw and you are on your way out the door!
11.  To replace a meal or use after exercise:  I usually add about 1/2-1 cup of Greek yogurt.  Rolled oats is another great option.  Cooked beans are another great choice that you do not notice in the smoothie, but provide lots of fiber and protein.

Things I Didn’t Follow in the Book:
1.  I used water and not coconut water.  The coconut water at Aldi I purchased had 13 grams of sugar per cup.
2.  Instead of avocado or grapes, I used an apple.  Apples are cheap and I had them on hand.  🙂

 

 

Simply Green Smoothies at Amazon

Don’t need another cookbook?  It is at our local library – so it may be at yours, too!  Our library system has 7 copies.

Website to Sign Up for the 30 Day Smoothie Menu is here.

Mango Smoothie
Author: Mary Ellen P. Riley / Whisk Together
Ingredients
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 cups baby spinach
  • 2 cups strawberries
  • 1 cup chopped mango
Instructions
  1. Add the ingredients to the blender in the order listed. Blend for 2-3 minutes or until smoothie. Feel free to use frozen spinach, strawberries or mango! They are all delicious. You may want to thaw them in the fridge overnight or the microwave to blend properly.
  2. Add ice if you wish for a colder smoothie!
Notes
Recipe from Simple Green Smoothies

 

smoothie day 2

The following photo was for a smoothie containing red cherries and green spinach.  The result is naturally brown.  Because back in preschool I learned red + green = brown.  I have no idea how the photo in the book turned St. Patrick’s Day green if blended according to the recipe.  It was still tasty though!

20160101_114501

 

 

 

day 7

Cranberry Apple Cake and Merry Christmas!

 

Cranberry Cake- Christmas

Firstly, I wanted to wish you all a very Merry Christmas.  No, I am not blogging on Christmas morning 🙂  These blog posts are usually written and then scheduled for the morning.

Some of us are busy.  Some of us may finally have the time to sit and read a blog post instead of going off to work.  So, I decided to post this cake which may save someone if they need a quick dessert or breakfast to bring to someone’s house this holiday weekend.

Cranberry Cake-Whisk Together

 

Why I love this recipe:

1.  All of these items are usually on sale together and in season at this time.  (Aldi was selling bags of fresh cranberries for 25 cents each!)
2.  I have used this recipe for breakfast and dessert and snack.
3.  You can make this the day of or the day before you need it.
4.  It is a little like a pie… but without the need for a pie crust.
5.  Kid approved too!  My kids love this and eat it whether I make it the original way or the “healthier” way.

Cranberry Cake-on Whisk Together

Recipe Notes:  I have made this recipe 4 times in the past two weeks and the following are my observations:

Freezing fresh cranberries yields great results.  As mentioned above, I found bags of fresh cranberries at Aldi for 25 cents each.  I stocked up and froze them in ziplock freezer bags.  To use them, I thaw them in the fridge first overnight.  I am sure you could use them frozen and just watch the cake baking time – it might take longer to bake with frozen cranberries.  I do this all of the time with frozen blueberries.

Keep in mind, I have lowered my tolerance for sugar/sweets.  So, the original brown sugar content was too sweet for me and I lowered it to 1/4 cup.  Some reviewers of the original recipe complain that the 1/2 cup of brown sugar is not sweet enough.  I believe this is all your preference and what you are used to.

I noticed NO discernible difference between using all-purpose flour and white whole wheat flour.  Again, my family is used to eating almost all whole wheat/whole grain products.  So, again I think it is all what you are used to.  If you want to try white whole wheat, go for it!

My butter and applesauce notes-
#1 First try was with all butter:  of course it was delicious!  Nice buttery background flavor to the cranberries.  The top had a slight crunch with cake like interior that melts in your mouth.
#2 Second try was with 4 Tb. melted butter and 4 Tb. applesauce.  I couldn’t tell much difference.  The finished product tasted very similar.  The texture was slightly more gummy than the airy all butter #1 cake.
#3 Third try was with all applesauce:  it was delicious too!  The cake part was a little more gummy as is typical with substituting applesauce for oil or butter in most recipes.  The slight crunch on the top was gone completely.  The taste was very good and you definitely taste the cranberry.  The butter flavor was gone… but without eating the pies side by side, I didn’t miss it.

For serving guests, I make version #1 because it is delicious and decadent.  If I make this recipe for close friends or family, I go ahead and make version #3 because it is more economical as well as fewer steps in the recipe.

Cranberry Cake-6010 on Whisk Together

Even the pie pan is drooling because this tastes so good!  🙂

Cranberry Apple Cake and Merry Christmas!
Author: Mary Ellen P. Riley / Whisk Together
Ingredients
  • 12 ounce bag of fresh cranberries, rinsed and drained; or a bag that was frozen and thawed
  • 1 Granny Smith apple, cored and diced (you can peel it too if you like)
  • 1 and 1/8 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/4-1/2 cup brown sugar (1/4 cup for a tart cake, 1/2 cup for a sweet cake)
  • 2 oranges
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup + 1 Tb. sugar
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted and cooled; or 1/2 cup applesauce
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 1/4 cup sour cream or plain Greek yogurt
  • 1 cup all purpose flour or white whole wheat flour
  • 1/4 tsp. kosher salt
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
  2. Spray a 10″ or 9.5″ ceramic or glass pie pan with cooking spray. Set it on top of a rimmed cookie sheet or rimmed pan.
  3. In a large bowl, toss together cranberries, chopped apple, 1 tsp. cinnamon and brown sugar. Zest the 2 oranges to get 1 Tb. of orange zest. Now, cut them in half and squeeze out 1/4 cup of orange juice. Pour into pie pan.
  4. In another large bowl, beat the eggs with a mixer for 2 minutes on medium-high. Add 1 cup sugar, butter (or applesauce), vanilla and sour cream (or Greek yogurt). Beat on medium until mixed together.
  5. On low or “stir”, add the flour and salt. Mix until it just combines. Pour this batter over the fruit.
  6. Mix together the other 1 Tb. of sugar and 1/8 tsp. of cinnamon. Sprinkle on top of the cake batter.
  7. Bake 55-60 minutes. The top will be a pretty golden brown.
  8. Wait for this cake to cool an hour or two. I like mine cold from the fridge similar to how I like to eat apple pie. Or, warm it up. Or serve while warm with whipped cream or vanilla ice cream. Or simply serve for breakfast or quick snack.
Notes
Recipe adapted from Ina Garten “How Easy is That?”

 

100 Calorie Fruit Pizza Bites

Mini Fruit Pizzas on Whisk Together

 I am so encouraged and inspired by all the wonderful readers on Whisk Together and Money Saving Mom following my How I Lost 33 Pounds and Kept It Off for 3 Years.  A lot of great ideas in the comments as well.  I tried to keep the blog post down to the essentials.  Everyone is different and has different motivations and tricks.  What works for one person might not for another, but these tricks worked for me and they may for other people as well.

To the new followers:  You will notice a difference in photos and number of posts now than if you view my previous blog entries.  We recently sold our house and living in an apartment with one large window blocked by our sectional!  No light and no kitchen space leads to different output.  The house should be done in early September though and back to rolling out the meal plans and recipes like usual!

Tips and Motivation:
1.  Buy or use a food scale.  If you notice boxes at the store use weight (ounces) and not volume (cups) in order to package their food.  This is because food shifts while in transit and completely normal.  But, the thing is that the nutritional facts are often also in weight measurements as well.  A food scale just made everything easier to get my plate and less messy.  Less mess is always good and my prime reason for weighing my baking ingredients!

2.  Go to sleep in your workout clothes if you need to.  If you need to workout in the morning and have trouble getting motivated, go to bed in your workout clothes.  It’s a great motivator, reminder and time saver in the morning.  When I used to exercise more at night, I wore my workout clothes all day to remind myself.

3.  If you lapse in your exercise or calorie intake, just start over.  Don’t think about it.  It’s a new day.  Just get back doing it again.  Easier said than done… I know!

4.  You WILL be hungry.   I have heard this complaint from some others that they didn’t like to diet because they were hungry.  Of course you are!  Your body loves homeostasis.  Your body wants to stay the same and in order to do that, it wants a certain number of calories to maintain that weight.  When you eat fewer calories, you are forcing the body to go out of homeostasis.  That’s why I roll my eyes at these diets that promise you won’t be hungry.  Of course, hunger is all relative and each person is different.  Hunger is a powerful tool your body uses.

How do you avoid hunger?  The things I tried were drinking lots of water and tea.  Chewing gum.  Finding a new hobby to work on.  Exercise during my hungriest time – evening – to keep me busy.  Eating almost zero calorie foods like celery.  Taking a multivitamin.

Mini Fruit Pizzas_1 on Whisk Together

**Book Update**  The new book I’ve been reading is Talk Like Ted by Carmine Gallo.  I taught public speaking for a few years and found a lot of the information very helpful.  There are some GREAT ideas like “practice”. Seriously.  The people that prepare for TED talks practice a lot and make their talk look so easy.  If you haven’t heard of TED talks, they are 18 minute presentations on “ideas worth spreading”.  You may have seen or heard of the most popular talk by Sir Ken Robinson on how “School Kill Creativity.”  The book is an excellent resource for anyone that has a public speaking engagement or in sales.  He suggests to use humor in your speech and  to create “wow” moments like when Bill Gates unleashed mosquitos during his malaria presentation.

Mini Fruit Pizzas_5 on Whisk Together

**Recipe Update**
The last recipe, Summer Vegetable Tian, was quite healthy.  So, I thought I would add this one to the blog because it was so successful.  I have also started coding all the nutritional information for future posts for myself and also for my husband because he started Lose It last week.  This recipe is the same as my Homemade Fruit Pizza  only I put them in a mini-muffin pan for portion control.  The toppings and ideas would also be delicious on those “Brownie Bites” they sell in stores – a super easy and quick makeover for a delicious store bought treat.

Mini Fruit Pizzas_3 on Whisk Together

I also love the fact that these treats have NO artificial colors or flavors.  View the cookies I made with just some strawberries and blueberries.  Recipes can be cute without resorting to artificial stuff!

Calories: 101;  Fat: 4.9 g; Carbs: 13.6 g; Sugars 9.4 g; Protein 1.4 g   (Calculated using 1 cup blueberries for topping)

Mini Fruit Pizzas_4 on Whisk Together  Mini Fruit Pizzas_6 on Whisk Together

100 Calorie Fruit Pizza Bites

Ingredients

  • For the Crust:
  • 1/2c. butter, soft
  • 3/4c. sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 1 1/4c. flour
  • 1 tsp. cream of tartar
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • Topping:
  • 1 pkg. neufchatel cream cheese, soft (8 oz.)
  • 1/2 c. sugar
  • 2 tsp. vanilla
  • 1-2 cups sliced fruit: strawberries, blueberries, kiwi, pineapple, mandarin oranges, fresh cherries, blackberries, raspberries, mango, etc.

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven 350 degrees.
  2. In a great big bowl, cream butter, sugar, egg and vanilla. In a not so big bowl, combine flour, cream of tartar, baking soda and salt.
  3. Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients gradually and mix until it makes a dough. Shape the dough into a log and wrap in plastic wrap. Think cookie dough log at the grocery store. Put in the fridge for 30 minutes or so.
  4. Spray a mini muffin pan with baking spray or cooking spray. You need two pans, or reuse your 1 pan.
  5. Cut the log into 1" disks. Cut those disks into fourths. You should have about 30-36 cookies. Place each cooking into the muffin well and press down slightly.
  6. Bake 12-16 minutes. Rotate halfway through baking. Remove when the edges just start to turn golden brown.
  7. After about 5 minutes, press the tops with your fingers or indent with a spoon just to make sure the top isn't doming. After 10 minutes, remove from the muffin pan and allow to cool completely on a wire rack.
  8. For the topping: Beat the cream cheese, sugar and vanilla together until smooth. Put into a pastry bag or a plastic freezer bag with the corner trimmed off with scissors. Squeeze and top each cookie with the cream cheese. Top with fruit. Store in the fridge until serving.
http://www.whisktogether.com/2014/07/14/100-calorie-fruit-pizza-bites/

For the Crust:
1/2c. butter, soft
3/4c. sugar
1 egg
1 tsp. vanilla
1   1/4c. flour
1 tsp. cream of tartar
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. salt

Topping:
1 pkg. cream cheese, soft (8 oz.)*
Optional: 1-2 teaspoons of lime or lemon zest  LOVE this addition!!
1/2 c. sugar
2 tsp. vanilla
2 cups or so of sliced fruit: pineapple, strawberries, blueberries, kiwi, peaches, mandarin oranges, etc.)

Directions:
1. Preheat oven 350 degrees.  In a large bowl, cream butter, sugar, egg and vanilla.  Combine flour, tartar, baking soda and salt.  Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients gradually and stir until it makes a dough.  Shape the dough into a log and wrap in plastic wrap.  The shape is just like the cookie dough logs at the store.  Put in the fridge for 30 minutes or so.
2. Spray the mini muffin pan with baking or cooking spray.  Cut the roll at 1″ increments.  Then, each of those circles cut into fourths.  This is the messy part.  It’s okay. Put each 1/4 cookie into the wells.  Bake 12-16 minutes.  Rotate halfway through baking.  Remove when the edges just start to turn golden brown.  
3. Beat all of topping ingredients together except fruit.  Pipe onto cooled cookies using a pastry bag or plastic freezer bag with corner trimmed off.   Top with sliced fruit.
 

Batidos (Fruit Shakes)

Batidos on Whisk Together

 

This recipe is from the Caribbean and Latin America.  Traditionally, the batido or “fruit shake” is made with any tropical fruit like pineapple, banana, mango, papaya, guava and passion fruit.  In the photo, I used strawberries because we had a lot of them to use up before going moldy.  Frozen fruit can be used instead of fresh – just eliminate or decrease the amount of ice.  For those eliminating sugars, you could of course eliminate the sugar added or replace with honey, agave, etc.

Kid approved, healthy and fast!

Batidos (Fruit Shakes)

Ingredients

  • 3 1/2 cups ripe fruit, chopped for blender
  • 2 cups ice
  • 1 and 1/2 cups cold milk
  • 1 T sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • pinch salt

Instructions

  1. Throw everything into your favorite blender and blend until smooth.
http://www.whisktogether.com/2014/06/29/batidos-fruit-shakes/

Batidos – “Fruit Shakes”

3 and 1/2 cups ripe fruit, cut for the blender
2 cups ice
1 and 1/2 cups cold milk
1 Tb. sugar
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
pinch salt

Blend and drink!

I’m Back & with Mango Bread!

Mango Bread on Whisk Together

 

Hey Everybody!!!!  So… I’ve been doing this blog 3 years.  THREE years.  Non-stop through anything and everything.  That is until I sold my home.  It’s like a 24 hour job!  Cleaning 3 times per day, packing half of the house into a truck and then a storage unit, touching up inside and out.  Wow!  I would say it is more stressful than getting married, but just a little less stressful than having a newborn baby.  I did get 5 hours of sleep at night in a row – which is way better than having a newborn.  Why sell?

Well, we always wanted to have more land and hubby wanted a workshop.  This subdivision we found gave us more land (that we don’t own… but it’s a park and a giant creek so little chance of building there) and an extra garage gives hubby his workshop.  After discussing it a couple days, we put money down on the lot, put our house up on the market and sold it in EIGHT days.  Yes, eight.   I think we could have sold it sooner, but we had a huge ice storm opening weekend and then school was closed the following Monday as well.

While the new house is built, we are living apartment life.   I have 1 window to take photos with and that window is mostly covered by our sectional couch.   So, I can stop taking photos of food… or just bear with me for 5 months.  🙂

**RECIPE**

This recipe is for Mango Bread – a recipe I found at King Arthur Flour.  I had some thawed out mango and wanted to make something different from it.  Now, the bread tastes nothing like mango.  It would taste great savory or sweet like as French Toast or as a ham sandwich.  So, if you received mangoes as a gift, in your produce basket, or just tired of mango – then you may want to try this recipe and use them up!

Mango Bread
Recipe Type: Bread
Author: Mary Ellen P. Riley / Whisk Together
Ingredients
  • 1 1/4 cups puréed mango (1-2 large, ripe mango, peeled and puréed in a blender or food processor)
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons vital wheat gluten (optional)
  • 1 cup King Arthur 100% White Whole Flour
  • 2 cups King Arthur Unbleached Special Bread Flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons regular instant yeast
Instructions
  1. Add everything to the bread machine per the instructions. For my Oster machine, I add the liquids first. Then, I add everything else but the flour and yeast. Add the flour in one big heap. Poke a hole in the top with my finger and add the yeast into the hole.
  2. Hit “Dough Cycle” to make just the dough, or hit “white bread” cycle to make and bake the bread. This time I decided to try baking the bread and it worked great!
  3. If using the dough cycle, bake the bread in a 9×5 bread pan at 350 degrees for 25 minutes covered with foil, and then 15 minutes uncovered.

 

 

Mango Blueberry Greek Yogurt Parfait

mango blueberry yogurt_2 on Whisk Together

Book Update:   I just finished “The Drunkard’s Walk:  How Randomness Rules Our Lives” by Leonard Mlodinow while reading through his other new book “Subliminal”.  For the record, we were camping with our church this weekend and after a few hours I realized reading “The Drunkard’s Walk” may be interpreted as a self-help book and not a mathematical model.  Hmmmm….

I really didn’t think “The Drunkard’s Walk” would have anything to do with positive psychology at all, but actually the conclusion makes some very clear connections.  His parents were victims of the holocaust in Europe and came over to the United States to start a new life.  To make the long story short, his mother’s sister and husband tried to stay protected as the husband was a Jewish policeman.  However, for some reason the Nazis turned sour on them and led them to the gas chambers while his mother stayed alive.  From page 219:

“…but Sabina’s death still haunts her… To her this story shows that it is pointless to make plans…  But more important, my mother’s experience has taught me that we ought to identify and appreciate the good luck that we have and recognize the random events that contribute to our success.  It has taught me, too, to accept the chance events that may cause us grief.  Most of all it has taught me to appreciate the absence of bad luck, the absence of events that might have brought us down, and the absence of disease, war, famine, and accident that have not – or have not yet – befallen us.”

mango blueberry yogurt_1 on Whisk Together

Recipe Update:

Yeah, it’s simple.  I’ve been working on making instant pudding mixes in my kitchen which will be posted this week.  Instead, I wanted to post one of my “go to” meals for me and my two year old, Juliana.  We often eat this for lunch because:  1.  It’s fast, 2. It’s yummy, 3. It’s loaded with protein, vitamin C, vitamin A, antioxidants and calcium, 4.  You can make it lower in calories simply by reducing or removing the granola.  I ate TONS of yogurt while trying to lose weight and I know it works (Sept. 2010: 200 lbs.  and May 2011: 135 lbs.)

Mango Blueberry Greek Yogurt Parfait
2 servings

2 cups plain greek yogurt (I use the Fage brand because it is so cheap at Costco)
1 cup diced mango (I use frozen Trader Joe’s; or you could use fresh peaches here, too!
1/2 cup blueberries
1/4 cup Trader Joe’s Mango Passion granola (or your favorite granola)
1-2 tsp. honey, optional

1.  Divide the greek yogurt between two tall glasses or large bowls.
2.  Top with the fruit.
3.  Add granola.
4.  Drizzle honey if you like!  The granola is usually sweet enough for me.

Fruit Salsa and Homemade Tortilla Chips

I have been making tortilla chips at home for about 10 years now and from the comments on the web it seems to be a brand new thing.  Back in the day when the hubby and I had little money, I would buy cheap flour tortillas and bake them into tortilla chips.  I’m not sure they were that much healthier, but they were yummy!  Stacy’s Pita chips company has a new sugar and cinnamon chip that you can buy or make to go with this.  I love my fruit, so I’d eat this any time.  Great for an appetizer or side dish at a BBQ, party, shower, etc.

Fruit Salsa
yield about 8-10 servings

2 kiwi, peeled and diced
2 apples – like Golden Delicious or if you like tart ones, Granny Smith – peeled, cored and diced
8 ounces raspberries
1 lb. strawberries, sliced
1 Tb. white sugar (or more if you have fruit that is not as sweet)
1 Tb. brown sugar (optional)
3 Tb. fruit preserves like strawberry, raspberry, apricot, etc., slightly warmed in the microwave

4 flour tortillas
1/4 cup sugar
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 Tb. melted butter OR butter spray

1.  Mix all of the fruit in a great big bowl.  Toss with the sugar and preserves.  Cover and put in the fridge for 1 hour at least.
2.  To make cinnamon sugar chips:  preheat your oven to 400 degrees.  Cut the tortillas into triangles using a pizza cutter.

3.  Place tortillas on a greased cookie sheet or silicone mat on cookie sheet.  Mix the sugar and cinnamon together in a small bowl.


4.  Brush or spray butter onto the tortillas.  Sprinkle cinnamon and sugar on top.  Bake for about 10-15 minutes.  They should be crispy and mine are usually just turning brown a little around the edges.  Cool and eat with the salsa.

Regular Tortilla Chips

flour tortillas
cooking spray like olive oil, canola oil, etc.
Tony’s Creole Seasoning, or your favorite

1.  Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Like in the recipe above, cut the tortillas in triangles with a pizza cutter.  Lay on a greased cookie sheet.  Spray with cooking spray.
2.  Sprinkle seasoning and bake until lightly golden brown.

Fruit salsa recipe from Allrecipes.com
Tortilla Chips is my own recipe

Fresh Fruit Tart

These are my favorite dessert at French shops.  Although here in suburb of a suburb that is hard to come by now.  So, I made my own!   Here is the yummy fruit tart recipe I put together.  Normally, the filling is a custard which requires the stove and instead I cheated with a yummy cream cheese filling that requires no cooking.  It still tastes great and that is all that matters.  Plus the crust is completely from scratch.  You know exactly what is in it, though it may not be the most healthy of choices 🙂  That’s okay.  I still think I’ve lost weight because I quit eating processed food.

Fruit Tart
yield 4  – 4″ tarts

Crust:
1 and 1/4 AP flour
1/3 cup powdered sugar
1 tsp. vanilla (or almond extract)
1/2 cup melted butter

Filling:
6 oz. cream cheese, softened
1 Tb. lemon zest
1 Tb. lemon juice
1/4 cup sugar

Topping:
fresh kiwi, strawberries, blueberries, etc. sliced thin

1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Mix together the flour and powdered sugar in a bowl.  Add the vanilla and melted butter and mix until combined.  This is like a shortbread dough, so expect it to be thick.  Scoop about one heaping 1/4 cup of mixture for each tart pan.
2.  Press mixture into the pan and around the sides evenly.  Dock with a fork on the bottom (i. e. poke it).  At least 6 pokes with a fork all the way to the bottom.  Bake until lightly golden brown – about 9 minutes.  The tart is done when it is light golden brown.  Don’t let the edges get too brown.
3.  While those cool on a cooling rack, mix the cream cheese, zest, juice and sugar together with a fork or mixer.  Once the tarts are completely cool, divide the cream cheese mixture between the 4 tarts evenly and spread with a knife or pipe it with a plastic baggie cut on one corner.
4.   Decorate with fruit on top.
5.  Put in the fridge about 30 minutes to let the cream cheese firm up a bit.  If you are going to eat them over a period of time, keep everything separate and then assemble about 30 minutes before serving.  The fresh fruit does not look or taste as “fresh” even cut the day.  Cut the day of and you will be fine!

If you want to make this into a single 9″ tart, simply increase the baking time to 20-25 minutes on the crust.

Original Wilton Crust Recipe for the 4″ Tart Pan is:

6 Tbs. butter, melted
2 and 1/4 cup granola, crushed
6 Tb. flour
2/3 cup brown sugar
1 and 1/2 tsp. cinnamon

Oven set to 325 degrees.  Mix all the ingredients up and pat into the tart pans.  Bake 5-6 minutes.

Crust recipe found in Dierberg’s magazine March 2012 issue
Filling recipe by Wilton

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