Monthly Archives: September 2013

Italian cupcakes

Italian flavored cupcakes

Italian flavored cupcakes

I wasn’t really sure where I was going with this dish, but I knew I wanted a hearty, but reasonably healthful Italian dinner last night and this is what I came up with… awesome ‘meaty’ Italian cupcakes!  Yep, sounds weird.  Yep, tastes INCREDIBILMENTE DELIZIOSO (thank you google translate)!

In fact, my husband liked this one so much he suggested we put it on regular rotation!  That is pretty good feedback from a guy who isn’t overly keen on quinoa.

The texture of the quinoa and mushroom based cupcake was super meaty–which I LOVE because it makes this recipe so totally versatile. They are absolutely divine served over a spicy arugula salad OR on a bed of sauteed spinach/arugula/kale greens.  Next time I am going to do a gluten free pasta and make meatballs instead, for an authentic tasting spaghetti with meatballs.  I CAN’T WAIT!

Give this recipe a try!  I know you are going to love it as much as we do.


These are smaller cupcakes–making about 20/recipe–served over sauteed greens! YUM!

Servings ~6 large cupcakes

  • 1 c organic quinoa, uncooked
  • 1 jar of your favorite spaghetti sauce
  • 1-2 T EVOO
  • 5 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 6 oz portobello mushrooms, chopped
  • 1 t garlic powder
  • 1 T onion powder
  • salt and pepper
  • pinch chip pepper flakes
  • dash of agave nectar
  • 1 T basil
  • 1 T oregano
  • 1/2 c freshly grated parmasean cheese or nutritional yeast
  • 6 eggs, beaten
  • cooking spray

In a big sauce pan warm the EVOO.  Add the garlic, mushrooms, basil, oregano, and chipotle pepper flakes.  Cook over low until the mushrooms have softened 5-6 minutes.  Add the marinara sauce and cook over low heat for 5-10 minutes.  Stir in the quinoa, cover and continue cooking for about 30 minutes.  Turn off the heat and let cool.  

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.  

Mix together the eggs, agave nectar, salt, pepper, onion powder, and garlic powder.  Add this to the cooled quinoa with the cheese (or nutritional yeast) and stir until well incorporated.  

Put the batter into the greased cupcake tin.  Bake at 400 degrees F for 15-20 minutes, until done through.  Use an individual tart pan for more meatball sized cakes–dropping the cooking time accordingly.  I haven’t done them yet, but probably to 10-12 minutes?  



Sweet potato souffle

Sweet potato souffle--just out of the oven!  YUM!  I wish you could smell it right now!

Sweet potato souffle–just out of the oven! YUM! I wish you could smell it right now!

I planted a LOT of sweet potatoes in the garden this year and am hoping for a big harvest very soon!

In preparation for the digging, I decided I better find/create a few good recipes to help us use up all of those beautiful orange tubers (notice how optimistic I am this morning!).  This one is a Yoga Belly original, vegetarian, very filling, great for breakfast, lunch or dinner, and is super simple to make.  I have made this dish many times and each time it seems to get better!

I am going to start by talking about the crust. There is a very short ingredient list on this one, but the flavor is HUGE!  Plus, the gluten-free crust adds a nice bit of protein, monounsaturated fat, iron, calcium, magnesium, and fiber to your diet.  This crust is so good, it can and SHOULD be used with all of your favorite savory pies and quiches.

A few of my favorite oils!

A few of my favorite oils!

Now let me tell you about the filling.  Eggs and sweet potatoes are the main two ingredients, so that should give you a pretty good idea for how soft the mouth feel is on this souffle.  A high quality oil adds a LOT to the dish, so make sure you use a good, super flavorful oil.  If you know me at all, you won’t be a bit surprised by this comment, but I source most of these oils from TJMAXX or Marshalls, so I can have a nice variety here without breaking the bank.

Helpful hint–store your opened oil in the fridge to keep it from going rancid!

I LOVE truffle oil (not pictured) with just about anything, and it works beautifully here.  I have also used toasted walnut oil and loved every bite!  The rosemary, however, is the star of the dish–so be sure to use fresh, and lots of it.

Take some time to do something special like this for your family–if not this weekend, then very soon!  I promise, you will be so very happy that you did!

Served with heirloom tomatoes fresh from the garden!

Served with heirloom tomatoes fresh from the garden!

Sweet potato souffle

Servings ~6


  • 1 1/2 c almond flour or meal
  • 1/4 c EVOO
  • 1 T water
  • 1/2 t salt
  • 1/2 t baking soda
  • very light dusting of stevia (optional)


  • 4-5 smaller sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/4″ pieces
  • kosher salt
  • a couple of long springs of fresh rosemary — 1/4 cup?
  • 1/2 c good quality Parmesan cheese or nutritional yeast
  • 2 t truffle oil or use your fav oil (I have used both toasted walnut and truffle–both awesome!)
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 2-3 shallots
  • 2 c baby spinach (chopped into bite-sized pieces)
  • salt and pepper
  • chipotle pepper flakes
  • ground nutmeg
  • 6 eggs


Preheat oven to 350 degress F.  

Mix the dry ingredients and then add the wet.  Press into a greased pie pan.  Bake for 15-20 minutes.  Set aside to cool.

Turn up the oven temp to 400 degrees F.


Boil the sweet potatoes in a salted boil for about 25-30 minutes, depending upon their size–until nice and soft.  Drain the water and let cool.

Place the Parmesan  rosemary, truffle oil, garlic, sprinkle of salt, pepper, chipotle pepper flakes, and shallots in the food processor and blend until the garlic and shallots are chopped up into nice small pieces–a minute or two should be just fine.

Once the sweet potatoes are cool, add them to the food processor and mix until pretty smooth.  Add the eggs and mix until well incorporated.

Add 1/2 of the filling to the cake or pie pan.  Add a layer of spinach and sprinkle just a little bit of lemon juice on top of the spinach.  Add the other 1/2 of the filling on top.  Sprinkle the top with a dash of ground nutmeg.

Bake for 45-60 minutes, or until the souffle is cooked through.  Let cool before you serve.