Author Archives: moki3

looks store bought, tastes homemades, are homemade – Granola Bars

I love granola bars, however, I hate all of the preservatives that you find in all the store bought bars. A few years back, I found a great easy recipe to make your own granola bars. Personally, I think these have way more taste then the ones you would buy in the store. They look exactly like store bought, but tastes way better and does not have all of the “junk” that a store bought bar contains!granola_bars2_web

This recipe allows for a lot of variety in the ingredients that you use. Which is awesome, because you can use the same recipe over and over again! They are also very easy and fast to make!

Granola Bars

3 1/2 cups old fashioned rolled oats

1 cup chopped nuts – i like to use walnuts, pecans, almonds, cashews – but really any selection works

1 cup sweetened or unsweetened flaked coconut

1/2 sunflower seeds

2 1/2 cups crisp rice cereal – rice krispies works just as well

1/3 cup flax seeds or wheat germ

1 cup raisins or chopped dates – or use any dried fruit you prefer

1 cup light brown sugar, packed

1 cup light corn syrup

1 cup creamy peanut butter

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1/2 cup milk

1 – combine the first 4 ingredients and place in a 13 x 9 x 2 -in baking pan and bake for 20 minutes at 425 degrees Celsius. take out and stir every 5 -7 minutes.

2 – in a seperate bowl, combine crisp rice cereal, flax seeds and raisins, add the dried baked ingredients to this bowl – set aside

3 – combine brown sugar and corn syrup in a saucepan and bring to a boil over medium – high heat, stir frequently. Cook for 1 minute. Remove from heat and add peanut butter and vanilla extract, and mix well.

4 – pour this syrup mixture over the dried ingredients mixture and stir until well coated. only pour have the syrup mixture and then add the milk and then finish with the rest of the syrup mixture.

5 – quickly spread this mixture into the 13 x 9 x 2-in baking pan, and press down to evenly spread out the mixture. Let the mixture sit and become firm.

this recipe makes about 36 bars

These granola bars are also very chewy, if you want to add some chocolate, add about 1/2 cup of chocolate chips when you are adding the milk. However, I think adding the chocolate takes away from the healthy aspect of these bars!

However, these bars are to be made unique to each persons taste, so have fun and add your favorite ingredients!

Advertisements

4 Comments

Filed under 1

Chocolate…. Caramel….

A few years ago at Christmas, I made this Chocolate Caramel Candy. This was the most amazing, sweet, crunchy candy¬† square I have ever had. However, I can no longer eat it, because it is a very rich square. My stomach can no longer handle my sweet tooth addiction ūüė¶ squares1

This is a very sweet and crunchy bar, it reminds me of a Snickers bar, however this one is way better. It has marshmallow center with peanuts topped with caramel which is layered between chocolate. Just thinking about it makes my mouth water.  So, if you are one with a sweet tooth, this is for you!

One down side to this recipe, is that it takes awhile to make, because you have to let the different layers sit. Also you have to melt and mix every layer, so it requires you to either do lots of dishes or have lots of pots. Either way, there are dishes to do! BUT, the hard-work is all worth it

Chocolate Caramel Candy (Taste of Home, Dec/Jan ’98)

1 cup milk chocolate chips

1/4 cup butterscotch chips

1/4 cup creamy peanut butter

Filling:

1/4 cup butter or margarine

1 cup sugar

1/4 evaporated milk

1- 1/2 cups marshmallow creme

1/4 cup creamy peanut butter

1 tsp vanilla extract

1- 1/2 cup chopped salted peanuts

Caramel Layer:

1 package (14oz) caramels

1/4 cup whipping cream

Icing:

1 cup milk chocolate chips

1/4 cup butterscotch chips

1/4 cup creamy peanut butter

1 – combine the first three ingredients in a small saucepan; stir over low heat until melted and smooth. Spread into a lightly greased 13 in X 9 in X 2 in pan. Refrigerate until set.

2 РFor the filling, melt the butter in a saucepan over medium to high heat. Add sugar and evaporated milk. Bring to a boil and stir for 5 minutes. Remove from heat and add the marshmallow creme, peanut butter and vanilla. Stir them together and add the peanuts.  Spread over the first layer and refrigerate until set.

3 – For the caramel layer, melt the caramels and whipping cream over low heat, stirring occasionaly until melted and smooth. Spread over the second layer – the filling. Refridgerate until set.

4 – For the icing, melt chocolate chips and peanut butter in a saucepan over low heat and stir until melted and smooth. Spread over the caramel layer. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour, to ensure everything has set.

Store this dessert in the fridge. This makes about 8 dozen 1-in squares.

There is lots of work involved in making this square, but it is a crowd pleaser and won’t disappoint at the all important Christmas parties coming up.

Enjoy !

Leave a comment

Filed under 1

Fromagerie des Basques

This past summer I had the amazing experience of doing the Explore Program. A great opportunity, if any of you have the chance to do, take it. You will not be disappointed. I spent 5 weeks this past summer in Trois-Pistoles, Quebec. This is a small town of about 4,000 people. It had an amazing view and was right on the St. Laurent River and it had the best cheese ever!

fromagerie_ext

The Fromagerie has so many different types of cheeses it is insane. While down there, we made a local trip to the Fromeragie. If you do not like cheese, they had amazing ice cream as well. One really cool thing, is that they have a huge window that allows you to see into the factory and you can see how the cheese is made. Unfortunately for me, the day my class took the tour of the factory, I was sick, however I heard it was pretty cool.

Some of my favorite types of cheese I liked was the the cheddar¬†fum√© au bois d’erable (which is smoked fume1maple syrup cheddar cheese), ok this sounds weird, but tasted really good.

 

 

 

 

Another type all of us students enjoyed was Kwick-Kwick cheese. The first time I tried it, I didn’t like it, but assaisonneafter a second attempt, I loved it. It is very firm pieces of cheese, since it is the curd. There are many different flavors to choose from – BBQ, pepper, bacon, tomoto and basil and original. My favorite is the BBQ or the bacon flavor. This also made it an easy and quick snack as well.

 

 

Unfortantely, being back out in Alberta, it is almost impossible to obtain these cheeses. However, if I get the chance to go back, I am definitely making a stop at the Fromagerie. If anyone has the chance to go to Trois-Pistoles, don’t forget to check out the Fromeragerie.

1 Comment

Filed under Travel

Tasty Vegan Snack Bars – Yes, it is possible!

ok… I will be honest with you, I am not a vegan or a vegetarian or planning on becoming one. I love meat just to much. However, I do occasionally enjoy having a vegan snack bar. I stumbled across these one day when I was shopping at Naturista’s, here in Lethbridge. This is a relatively new locally owned Health Food Store.

So one day when I was in there shopping for a new water bottle – thanks to BPA’s. One of the employee’s at Naturista’s asked me if I have ever tried a vegan snack bar. At first I was a bit skeptical, however, I thought there is always a first for everything. To my amazement, they are actually quite good.

Some of my favorite vegan snack bars are:

Bumble Bar – ok the name is kind of weird, but the bar’s¬†are quite good. There are mimg_1918any different flavors to choose from, however my favorite one is the Chocolate Crisp. It is a sweet blend of sesame seeds, crisp brown rice and peanuts. I find that this bar is great alternative to a regular old chocolate bar. I have also tried there new one, Cherry Chocolate, however, the mixture of cherries, chocolate and sesame seeds didn’t sit so well.

 

 

Healthy Addictions bars Рthey got their name right with this one! So far I have only tried the Coco Bliss img_1916flavor and it was quite addicting РI now have a craving for another one! This bar is vegetarian and made with raw ingredients such as Рcoconut and agave syrup. This is a soft chewy bar with raw agave syrup in the middle and the outside is made of raw cocoa with raw agave syrup. It has a sweet taste, again it made a nice alternative to a  chocolate bar.

 

The Simply Bar – this bar kind of reminds me of a rice crispy square, but available in more flavors. It is aimg_1931-2 natural bar with low calories and lots of protein – 17g. WOW!!! However, this bar is not my favorite. I find that they are a bit dry and sometimes hard. Again, they come in lots of different flavors – I have only tried the Lemon Coconut, and I didn’t really like it. However, I would try another flavor such as the Cocoa Coffee or the Chocolate Peanut Butter.

Again, all of these bars can be bought right here in Lethbridge, Alberta at Naturista’s. I would also assume they could be purchased at any Health Food Store.

4 Comments

Filed under Vegan/Vegetarian

Round Street Cafe

This is one of my new favorite cafes to go to in Lethbridge. For those of you who know Lethbridge, their is round_street_cafe_sizednot a whole lot of good Cafes. However, this one, I just love it. The food is great, the atmosphere is relaxing and it is a great place to people watch.

What makes Round Street Cafe different from the rest, is that the owner, actually comes around and chats with everyone and their employees are extremely nice. One thing that is different is that a portion of the employees have physical or mental handicaps. The owner, who was a former Teachers Assistant, worked with people who have disabilities. She said that they also need jobs and here they can come and work for as many hours that is perfect for them. This is great!

The food is amazing and made with fresh local ingredients when possible. The pastries are baked fresh each morning. My favorite, is the blueberry muffin. Also, their sandwiches are quite filling, where you have the option of getting a half sandwich or a full sandwich. I love to eat, and personally a full sandwich is to much. So, i would recommend the half sandwich. My favorite lunch choice, is a half sandwich with the soup.

If you haven’t been to this cafe yet, go out and try it, you won’t be disappointed!

Round Street Cafe is located at 427 5th Street South, Lethbridge. They are open Mon – Fri 7am to 6pm, Saturday’s from 9am to 5pm and closed on Sundays.

Leave a comment

Filed under Restaurant Reviews

Harvest Haven

Over the past couple of years, my family and I, have been making the switch over to organic products. However, I do agree with the argument made in the post, Organic my A$$, you do need to be careful in where you are buying the¬†products from. However, I have found that Harvest Haven, a locally owned and operated store just outside of Lethbridge, Alberta has a wide variety of organic products. Also, what they can’t grow on their farm, they will purchase from other local farmers in the area or within Canada and if necessary they will buy from abroad.

The livestock that are raised right on the farm are done so in a low stress environment and they slaughter only one animal. They do not do mass production, so the only downside they will not always have full stock of the meats. However, this is also a positive because you know the animals are not being mass produced. They sell, beef, buffalo, lamb, chicken and turkey. They also sell, fruits and vegetables, dairy and grain products and dried fruits, nuts and seeds. My favorite thing to buy, is the strawberries in the summer and also their steaks.

One thing, I really enjoy about buying from this store, is that I know that I am getting excellent quality foods, the staff are really helpful and willing to answer any questions that you have and also I like to support the local farmers.

Harvest Haven is opened Sunday through to Friday from 9am to 6pm. They are located at  RR 8 РSite 22 РComp 1, Station Main, Lethbridge, AB, T1J 4P4.

1 Comment

Filed under Organic

The Blood Type Diet

OK, lets be serious, fad diets are always hard to follow and once you loose the weight, are you actually going to keep it off? I am not into dieting, but I came across this one and it is actually sounds¬†kind of convincing and it might actually work. The Blood Type Diet was discovered and researched by Peter J. D’Adamo, who is a naturopathic doctor. His idea, is that lectins, which are food proteins react differently with each blood type. Therefore, certain foods are more beneficial then others.

D’Adamo research involves studying the evolution of blood types and the foods that were around during the discovery of the certain blood type.

So exactly what type of foods should we eat? Well,

  • Type O – should have a high protein diet and restrict grains, breads and legumes.
  • Type A –¬†benefit from a vegetarian diet. However, some exercise would also be beneficial.
  • Type B – are considered to have a strong immune system and a flexible digestive system. Their diet should consist of low fat dairy products, meat and produce. However, it is¬†advised that a Type B should stay away from wheat, corn and lentils. Moderate exercise is recommended.
  • Type AB – has a sensitive digestive tract therefore would benefit from a seafood, tofu, dairy and produce diet. However, try and avoid chicken, beef and pork. Also, some exercise would be beneficial.

This diet actually makes sense because our blood type is classified based on the presence or absence of certain antigens, such as proteins, carbohydrates, glycolipids and glycoproteins. Therefore, if we eat foods that is compatible with our blood, which is important for the transport of nutrients, oxygen and waste, ideally we should be healthier!

Leave a comment

Filed under Fad Diets