Tag Archives: recipes

{3 Ingredient} Apple Fig Fruit Leather

Apple Fig Fruit Leather | Mama Papa BubbaAmidst our packing frenzy, the figs on our lovely backyard fig tree have decided that now is the time to become perfectly ripe.  This poses a problem for a few different reasons…. 1) The tree is big and old and produces a TON of fruit,  2) I’m the only one in our family that truly enjoys fresh figs, 3) Keeping up with the daily picking of the fruit is time consuming, and 4) If I don’t keep up with the picking, our backyard becomes a sticky mess filled with wasps.

In an effort to avoid a waspy sticky mess of a backyard, I’ve been giving away boxes of figs to almost every person I’ve been in contact with, I’ve been adding 3 or 4 to our green smoothie each morning, and I’ve been eating them fresh as my nightly treat, but that just wasn’t enough.  I needed a way to use up a ton of figs all at once, and preferably it would be something that the other members of my family would enjoy too.  Enter fruit leather…

IMG 0516Gracen loves fruit leather, and though it can be a little intimidating if you’ve never made it before, it’s truly one of  the easiest, most forgiving things to make.  And no special equipment is needed!  If you have some fruit, an oven, a baking pan, and some parchment paper, you can easily make your own fruit leather at home.

IMG 0515I’ve made several batches of this stuff already, and it’s getting eaten up like nobody’s business!  Plus I’ve changed my method a little bit and it’s now even easier for me to make my own fruit leather.  Here’s how to do it…

 

Apple Fig Fruit Leather

  • 10 ripe figs, washed
  • 2 apples, cored and peeled
  • 1 cup of water (fresh-squeezed apple or orange juice works too!)

Preheat oven to 125 degrees (or lowest setting) and line a large baking sheet with parchment paper (paper should cover all edges of the pan).

Place all ingredients in a covered pot and bring to a boil.  Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer fruit {still covered} for about 30 minutes, or until super soft.

Pour everything into a food processor or good blender and purée until smooth.  

Pour fruit mixture out onto parchment-lined baking sheet and use the back of a spatula to spread the fruit purée out so it covers the entire base of the pan. Gently shake the pan make the purée as even as possible.

Pop into the oven for approximately 8 hours (I put ours in just before going to bed).  You want to remove the fruit leather from the oven when it’s still sticky to the touch, but not at all wet.  You may find that part of your fruit leather will be done earlier than the rest.  In this case,  you’ll need to remove the fruit leather from the oven, cut off the finished part, and return the still wet to the touch part to the oven for another hour or two.

When finished, simply remove the large sheet of fruit leather from the baking sheet, cut of the excess parchment paper around the edges, and cut directly through both the remaining parchment and fruit leather to create strips.  Roll strips and secure with baker’s twine or washi tape.  Store in an air-tight container or jar.

Enjoy!

 

See our other homemade fruit leather recipes here: 

Berry Banana // Apple Pear Carrot

 

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{3 Ingredient} Swirly Strawberry Creamsicles

Swirly 3 Ingredient Strawberry Creamsicles | Mama Papa BubbaWe’ve been making super simple {and healthy} strawberry creamsicles since Grae was a wee little thing, and they’ve always been a summer favourite.  Today, with our fridge still brimming with freshly picked berries, we made our best version yet with the addition of a simple ingredient… dates!  

IMG 9708I must admit that though I’ve known about the awesome sweetening power of dates for a long time now, I’ve been a little hesitant to jump onboard…  But, I’m so glad I did!  Using them in our cookie dough boys and our wholewheat strawberry shortcake recently has made me realize that they really aren’t all that intimidating.  Simply soak, puree, and use like honey.  Easy enough, right?  Plus they allow these popsicles to be perfectly sweet even though they’re made with plain yogurt.

IMG 9665
Healthy 3 Ingredient Strawberry Creamsicles

(makes 12 – 14 large popsicles)

  • 3 cups of fresh strawberries, cleaned and hulled
  • 4 majool dates
  • boiling water
  • 2 cups of plain organic yogurt, greek or regular

Before beginning this recipe, put the 4 majool dates into a small bowl and cover with boiling water.  Let sit for 15 minutes.

Pop strawberries into a food processor (or good blender) and puree until smooth or nearly smooth.  Pour the puree into a glass measuring cup and set aside.

Without worrying about washing your food processor or blender, blend your pitted dates and about a tablespoon of the soaking water until smooth (this may require you to stop the processor and scrape down the sides with a spatula a few times).  Add the yogurt and blend to combine.

Using a large spoon, scoop some of the yogurt mixture into each of the popsicle moulds.  Gently pour enough strawberry puree on top to cover the yogurt.  Continue to layer the two until the moulds are full.  

Freeze overnight and enjoy!

♥ 

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Summer Strawberry Shortcake {with Wholewheat Date-sweetened Biscuits}

Strawberry Shortcake with Wholewheat Date sweetened biscuits | Mama Papa BubbaNothing says summer quite like fresh strawberry shortcake, and since our kitchen is currently overflowing with berries after this morning’s trip to Krause Berry Farms, I thought Miss G and I would experiment with a healthier, wholewheat, sugar-free version this afternoon.  The unfortunate part is that our little old house was sitting at 31 degrees, so turning on the oven to bake shortcakes certainly wasn’t our best plan, but you gotta do what you gotta do when you have fresh berries begging to be gobbled up! ☺

IMG 9613While I don’t mind baking with small amounts of honey and pure maple syrup, our recent {and delicious!} cookie dough boys have peeked my interest in baking with dates {and other sweet fruits} instead of the alternative sweeteners I usually turn to.  I’m happy to report, that our first experiment was a total success!  These shortcakes turned out soft, moist inside, and perfectly sweet!  Plus the tiny hint of coconut flavour from the coconut oil made them even more delicious.  

IMG 9617Brad loved them, and I think Gracen thought she’d died and gone to heaven went she saw a little plate stacked with cake, sliced strawberries, and freshly whipped cream coming her way.  

Here’s the recipe to our new favourite summer dessert….

Strawberry Shortcake with Date-sweetened Biscuits (adapted from this recipe)

  • 2 1/2 cups of wholewheat flour
  • 2 teaspoons of baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon of sea salt
  • 2/3 cup of buttermilk (you can make your own by adding 3/4 of a tablespoon of vinegar to 2/3 of a cup of regular milk and letting it sit for 5 or 10 minutes)
  • 8 tablespoons of coconut oil (in its liquid state)
  • 1 egg
  • 4 majool dates, soaked and pureed
  • 1 1/2 cups of whipping cream
  • 1 tablespoon of pure maple syrup
  • strawberries, sliced

Before starting this recipe, place the dates into a small bowl, cover them with boiling water, and let sit for about 15 minutes.  Remove pits and place dates, along with a tablespoon or two of the soaking water in a food processor or blender and process until smooth {or nearly smooth}.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.   If you’re making your own buttermilk, mix the milk and vinegar together and set it aside.

Whisk together the wholewheat flour, baking powder, and sea salt.

In a separate bowl, mix the buttermilk, coconut oil, egg, and pureed dates until as smooth as possible.

Pour the wet mixture into the dry mixture and stir until just barely combined.  Divide the dough in 8 to 10 balls and bake on a parchment-lined baking sheet for 15 to 18 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean and the tops are slightly golden.

Whip cream until peaks begin to form, then add maple syrup and whip for an extra few seconds to combine.  

Slice strawberries.

To assemble, cut shortcakes in half horizontally, placing the tops aside temporarily.  Place a heaping scoop of strawberries on each shortcake bottom, then top with a generous spoonful of freshly whipped cream, and place the tops back on.  Serve immediately.

Enjoy!

♥ 

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Nutrient-Packed Cookie Dough Boys

Nutrient Packed Cookie Dough Boys | Mama Papa BubbaThe other night, I had the absolute pleasure of joining several other Vancouver mom bloggers at Whole Foods for evening with Aspen Clean, a local eco-friendly cleaner and cleaning company.  While there, Whole Foods totally spoiled us with delicious green smoothies, all kinds of yummy nutrient-packed salads, and the yummiest ever {vegan, gluten-free} cookie dough balls.  Our healthy eating specialist, Sarah, made them while we watched, and not only were they quick and easy to whip up, but the giant bowl full disappeared in a matter of minutes – a sure sign of their deliciousness. As soon as I tasted {my first} one, I knew that Grae would just love them.  So today, we got our ingredients and whipped up a batch.  My suspicions were right – Grae did  love them.

IMG 9442Here’s our lineup of ingredients….  Pecans, dates {soaked in water}, coconut, raisins, sea salt, cinnamon, coconut oil, and vanilla.  Now, I have to say that the original recipe includes coconut manna (also known as coconut butter) and not coconut oil…  In fact, our healthy eating specialist explained that coconut oil is just the fat squeezed out of the coconut meat, while coconut manna is the coconut meat and fat combined, making it much more nutrient-rich.  The trouble is, our local grocery store doesn’t carry coconut manna, so we had to improvise.  While maybe not as healthy, the recipe still turned out great!

IMG 9445Anyways, onto actually making the cookie dough boys!  First up, we drained {almost all of} the water our dates had been soaking in and blended them in our food processor.  (Word to the wise, be sure your dates don’t still have the pits in them before blending. Oy.)

IMG 9447We processed them until nearly smooth, but not perfectly pureed.  Because it was such a small batch, it did take several rounds of stopping the machine, scraping down the sides, and then doing it again, but that just meant more jobs for my little helper, which she of course loved.

IMG 9449With the date paste saved in a separate bowl for later, Miss G added our coconut and pecans to the food processor.  Call us lazy, but we didn’t even wash out the processor bowl in between as it seemed like sort of an unnecessary step.

IMG 9453Then we pureed the coconut and pecans until they were meal-like.

IMG 9454Next up, Grae dumped all of the other ingredients (save the raisins) into the food processor with the coconut/pecan mixture.

IMG 9455Then we processed it all until it started to come together in a mass.

IMG 9459Here’s what it looked like when done.

IMG 9469The last step was to mix the raisins in by hand.

IMG 9476With our dough complete, we rolled it into balls using about a tablespoon of the mixture at a time.

IMG 9460And because Miss G is no longer a huge fan of raisins, before mixing them in, we set aside a part of the mixture.  To set Grae’s balls apart from the other, she rolled them in coconut, which was a lovely addition.

IMG 9466The verdict?  Delicious!  They’re sweet and satisfying just like a good dessert, but come sans all of the sugar and fat regular desserts have.  A definite success!

{Nutrient-packed} Cookie Dough Boys

(*this is a Health Starts Here recipe from Whole Foods)

  • 1/4 cup of date paste (we used 5 large majool dates)
  • 2 cups of pecans
  • 1 cup of unsweetened coconut flakes
  • 1 tablespoon of coconut manna (or as we used, 1/2 tablespoon of coconut oil)
  • 1 teaspoon of vanilla
  • 1 teaspoon of cinnamon
  • dash of sea salt
  • 1/2 cup of raisins

Soak the dates in room temperature water for an hour (you can cut down soaking time by using hot water), drain off almost all of the water, and purée the fruit until fairly smooth.  Set aside.

Blend pecans and coconut flakes in a food processor until meal-like.  Add all other ingredients, save the raisins.  Process until the mixture starts coming together in a large mass.

Dump dough into a large bowl and incorporate raisins by hand.  Taking 1 tablespoon scoops, roll the dough to create balls.  Roll in coconut or crushed nuts if desired.

Eat, refrigerate, or freeze.

Enjoy!

♥ 

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A Delicious First {& a Recipe}

IMG 8998IMG 9007IMG 9020IMG 9019This happened tonight…  Miss G’s first ever ice cream cone.  And oh my goodness, did she ever love it.  Before we knew it, all that was left was sticky fingers and a drippy chin and dress.  

She’s already planned our next two flavours too – pumpkin with cinnamon first, and then strawberry afterwards.  There’s bound to be plenty of ice cream in our future.

 

{Healthier} Creamy Coconut Ice Cream with Candied Coconut Sprinkles

Ice cream:

  • 1/2 cup of whipping cream
  • 2 cans of coconut milk (we used full fat)
  • 6 tablespoons of pure maple syrup
  • 1 tablespoon of pure vanilla

Whisk all ingredients together in a large bowl, then place in fridge to cool for a couple of hours.  Process in an ice cream machine for 20 minutes and put into the freezer for a few hours to set.

Sprinkles:

  • 1/2 cup of unsweetened shredded coconut
  • 1 teaspoon of pure maple syrup

Put both ingredients into a jar or bag and shake well.  Spread coconut out on a baking sheet in a thin layer.  Roast at 250 degrees until crunchy and golden brown.

Enjoy!

For more healthy-ish desserts, click here.

♥ 

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Healthier Peanut Butter Oat Cookies

Healthier Peanut Butter Oat CookiesGracen and I have experimented with making many different versions of healthier peanut butter cookies – cream cheese ones, two ingredient ones, banana-based ones – but sadly, none have ever turned out really well.   Late this afternoon, however, when she randomly declared that “We should make cookies! Yummy no sugar ones that Gracen can have – YEAAAAAAAAH!”,  we came up with our first batch that actually taste like real peanut butter cookies.  Only they’re much healthier. ☺  Here’s our new go-to peanut butter cookie recipe…

Healthier Peanut Butter Oat Cookies (based off of this recipe by Weelicious)

  • 1/2 cup of coconut oil
  • 2 tablespoons of good honey
  • 1 cup of all-natural peanut butter
  • 1 large egg
  • 3 tablespoons of pure maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon of pure vanilla
  • 1 1/4 cups of wholewheat flour
  • 1 cup of old-fashioned oats
  • 1 teaspoon of baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon of sea salt

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment.

Using a mixer, cream the coconut oil and honey together until smooth.  Add the peanut butter, egg, maple syrup, and vanilla and mix again until smooth.  

Add all of the dry ingredients to a separate bowl and whisk to combine.

Add the dry ingredients to the wet ones and mix just until combined.  Scoop out 1 tablespoon balls of dough and flatten with a floured fork. (For an additional nutrition boost, you could roll the balls in chia seeds or hemp hearts before flattening.)

Bake for 9 or 10 minutes, then cool and serve.

Enjoy!

For more healthy-ish desserts, click here.

♥ 

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Healthy Breakfast Banana Split

Healthy Breakfast Banana Split | Mama Papa BubbaBased on my beginning Toddler Food posts, this breakfast is an old favourite, but for one reason or another, I haven’t made it in a very long time.  I guess I kind of forgot about it.  But the other day, when Miss G’s breakfast request involved only one stipulation – something with bananas – it was the first thing I thought of.  I made her her first breakfast banana split in a long time, and she absolutely gobbled it up.  When lunch time rolled around, she requested another and convinced me with a “But Mama, I looooooooved that banana split.  You made it soooo yummy.”  I finally drew the line at dinnertime when she requested a third, but she’s had it for breakfast several times since.  

Breakfast Banana Split Ingridents | Mama Papa BubbaIt’s such a simple morning meal, but it’s healthy, can be made a ton of different ways, and almost tastes like dessert for breakfast. ☺  They change from one time to another, but here’s our usual line up of ingredients…  1/2 a banana cut lengthwise, plain organic greek yogurt (you could use sweetened yogurt if that’s what you’re used to), some almond butter (any nut butter would be delicious), a strawberry sliced up, and something to serve as sprinkles (today we used unsweetened coconut, but we’ve also used chia seeds and hemp hearts). 

IMG 8276This morning, I set out the ingredients as a little ‘build your own breakfast’ station and Miss G assembled her own banana split.  Just as we’ve done together previously, she laid the banana pieces down first, added a couple of big scoops of greek yogurt, topped them both with almond butter and strawberry slices, then sprinkled the whole thing with coconut.

IMG 8282Breakfast is served!

♥ 

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Toddler Food: What Miss G Eats {31}

Toddler FoodIMG 8714Breakfast // Plain organic yogurt with Anita’s Organic ancient grains breakfast boost.

IMG 9281Breakfast // Ezekiel cinnamon raisin toast with all-natural peanut butter.  Berries.  Chinese pear slices.  Satsuma slices.

IMG 9141Breakfast // Crispy brown rice cereal with chia seeds, sunflower seeds, cinnamon, and almond milk.

IMG 7941Breakfast // Plain organic yogurt with strawberry slices, almond slices, and chia seeds.

IMG 9617Lunch // Wholewheat couscous with steamed asparagus, edamame, baby green peas, feta, and herbs.

IMG 8208Lunch // Grilled chicken, spinach, and brie on wholewheat flax seed bread. Green grapes.  Red pepper slices.

IMG 8256Lunch {for 2 on the go} // Homemade carrot zucchini muffins.  Almond butter, oat, hemp heart, and chia multi-grain roll-up.  Baby cucumbers.  Avocado. Orange pepper slices.  Seedy crackers.  Apple slices.  Grapes.  Mango.  Mixed raw nuts.

IMG 8252Lunch // Quick Gracen-made pizza (all-natural apple chardonnay chicken sausage, orange pepper pieces, asparagus chunks, and grilled onions).

IMG 8185Lunch // Mixed brown rice bowl with grilled corn, onions,  peppers, black beans, fresh avocado, fresh mozzarella, and sour cream.

IMG 8750Lunch // Baby potatoes, asparagus, snap peas, cucumbers, green onions, and chickpeas in plain yogurt and dill.

IMG 8929Dinner // Mexican black bean salad.  Asian noodle salad.  Edamame salad.

IMG 7940Dinner // Sweet potato hash, asparagus chunks, grilled onions, spinach, and all-natural herb and garlic chicken sausage with a dollop of sour cream.

IMG 8110Dinner // Grilled coconut chicken.  Avocado chunks.  Rocket and harvest grains salad.  Strawberries.

IMG 8219Dinner // Wholewheat roasted veggie calzone.

IMG 8292Dinner // Wholewheat spaghetti with ground turkey and tomato basil spinach sauce.  Roasted beets.

IMG 9618Dinner // Grilled chicken.  Warm beet salad.  Warm baby potato salad.

♥ 

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{Healthy} Tropical Fruit Popsicles

Healthy Tropical Fruit Popsicles | Mama Papa BubbaWith 1/2 a crate of mango in the fridge and our supply of banana fudgesicles and avocado kiwi pops dwindling after last week’s burst of hot weather, Gracen I set out to make a yummy new batch of popsicles this afternoon. And yummy they are! The combination of mango, pineapple, coconut, and lime makes them taste just like something you’d sip on vacation while sunning on a gorgeous beach… Delicious!

IMG 9668Here’s our lineup of ingredients… Pineapple chunks (we used frozen because it’s what we had on hand, but fresh would be even better), mango chunks, a lime, one ripe banana, coconut milk, and Grae’s addition – unsweetened shredded coconut.

Juicing LimeWe began by juicing our lime and threw both the juice and the pulp into our food processor…

IMG 9676Along with everything else, except the shredded coconut.

IMG 9681Then we blended everything up until completely smooth while this little monkey gave our food processor some love.

IMG 9683Next, we added the shredded coconut and gave the mixture just a couple of pulses to mix it in.  At this point, we had a little taste test and decided to add in a teaspoon of good honey because our mango was very tart (totally optional, of course).

IMG 9686Now while it does mean dirtying another dish, I always like to pour our popsicle mixture into a large measuring cup before filling the moulds.  It’s so much easier and quicker than clumsy me attempting to pour straight from the food processor.  Of course, if you use a blender, this won’t be an issue.

IMG 9691After I fill the moulds, Miss G’s job is to place a ‘stick’ in each one.  When she was done, she desperately wanted a popsicle to eat (particularly, “the green and blue one on the riiiiiight”) .

IMG 9687Luckily, the disappointment that came with me telling her they’d need to sit in the freezer for several hours first was kicked to the curb with the offer of drinking up the leftover mixture, smoothie style.

IMG 9781Healthy Tropical Fruit Popsicles

  • 3 small mangos
  • 1 cup of pineapple
  • 1 banana
  • 1 cup of coconut milk
  • juice and pulp from 1 lime
  • 2 tablespoons of unsweetened shredded coconut
  • honey (optional)

Juice lime and add both the juice and pulp to a food processor or blender.  Blend until smooth.  Add the shredded coconut and pulse just long enough to mix it in.  Taste your mixture and add a small amount of honey if desired. Pour into moulds and freeze for several hours.

Enjoy!

♥ 

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Toddler Food: What Miss G Eats {30}

Toddler FoodIMG 6099Breakfast // Plain organic yogurt with homemade granola and frozen blueberries.

IMG 6435Breakfast // Scrambled eggs.  Fruit salad.  Wholewheat oatmeal flax pancake with all-natural peanut butter.

IMG 6681Breakfast // Hot oatmeal with almond milk, fresh blueberries, and chia seeds.

IMG 7143Breakfast // Wholewheat sourdough french toast with all-natural peanut butter.  Plain organic yogurt for dipping.

IMG 6336Breakfast //  Plain organic yogurt with homemade granola, fresh blackberries, and fresh strawberries.

IMG 7159Breakfast // Scrambled basil parmesan eggs.  Sweet potato hash.  Pink lady slices.

IMG 7626Breakfast // Plain organic yogurt with fresh mango, unsweetened coconut, and chia seeds.

IMG 6677Snack // Edible rainbow made out of strawberries, sharp cheddar, yellow peppers, edamame, blueberries, and banana slices.

IMG 6682Snack // Roasted garlic parmesan chickpeas.

IMG 6338Lunch {on the go} // Steamed beets.  Cottage cheese.  Blackberries.  Satsuma slices.  Pistachios and cashews. Yellow pepper slices.  Baby carrots.  Unsweetened banana slices.  Organic yogurt-covered raisins (the queen of all treats in our house!)

IMG 7636Lunch // Potato leek soup with chickpeas, baby green peas, and fresh parmesan.

IMG 6479Lunch {on the go} // Avocado.  Banana coins.  Seedy crackers with sharp cheddar.  Cashews.  Apple sandwiches filled with almond butter, oats, and chia.  Baby carrots.  Broccoli florets.

IMG 7845Lunch // Wholewheat pita pockets filled with almond butter, banana slices, and chia seeds.

IMG 6412Lunch {on the go} // Strawberries.  Blackberries.  Starfruit.  Mini wholewheat flatbread.  Seedy crackers.  Avocado.  Miniature chickpea patties.

IMG 7998Dinner // Lentil & veggie pasta and cheese.  Steamed broccoli.

IMG 6335Dinner // Coconut encrusted chicken.  Roasted sweet potato.  Roasted Brussels sprouts.  Steamed beets.

IMG 6557Dinner // Ravioli soup with fresh parmesan.  Roasted broccoli.

IMG 6575Dinner // Roasted sweet potato, cauliflower, beets, and carrots with pan-fried onions and all-natural apple chardonnay chicken sausage.

IMG 6729Dinner // Baked potato.  Barbecued chicken and veggie skewers.  Green salad.

IMG 6744Dinner // Baked spinach pasta and cheese with turkey and green peas.

IMG 7631Dinner // Chicken and bean ‘soft tacos’ with sautéed peppers, cheddar, avocado, and black beans on the side.  Sour cream and green salsa for dipping.

IMG 7775Dinner // Homemade pizza (roasted veggie and barbecue chicken).  Spinach salad with apples, feta, and sunflower seeds.

See all of our Toddler Food posts here.

♥ 

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