Lean Green Mommy Machine

Thoughts on health, wellness, living green and motherhood


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Gluten Free Dinner: Pizza and Chocolate Chip Cookies

I’ve been off wheat for about a month now. Some days are easier than others. Pizza day…that’s been torture.
I’ve tried a few recipes that were flops. An almond flour crust was just soggy and nasty. A quinoa crust I couldn’t even top and try to turn it into a pizza.
Don’t get me started on the cauliflower crust. gag. And I like cauliflower!
Well my awesome neighbor has also been trying out gluten free pizza crusts and has been at it for a bit longer than myself. She mentioned a recipe she felt was pretty good and I decided to give it a try.
Joy!
This pizza crust was actually…crust-like! I admit I haven’t tried a multitude of crusts partly because I haven’t been at this long and partly because I’ve hesitated buying the many ingredients that gluten free baking often requires.
This recipe had very few ingredients and I had them all except the xanthum gum, which my neighbor happily gave me.
The recipe is from Gluten Free Cooking School.
I was short 1/3 cup of brown rice flour so I subbed in almond flour for it. (This website is how I knew I could do that and it would be ok) I also used different seasoning. That part is personal and you can season it how you want. I used salt, garlic powder and Italian seasoning.
Even my husband tried it and said it was good and the whole family would eat it and never know. Yay! I get pizza again and it can still taste good.
Hubby didn’t enjoy the Brussels sprouts I put on my pizza though.

Yummy!

After we all enjoyed our pizza I let the kids have a chocolate chip cookie. I had made a big batch of them for my 6 year old’s soccer snack on Saturday but then constant rain flooded the fields and soccer was cancelled.
Those cookies were torturing me. I wanted one SO badly. Soft and gooey and baked just right.
Curse you gluten!! (can you see me shaking my fist in the air?)
Anyway, I started thinking about how I had made a mug cake before (thank you, Pinterest) and it was really quite good. I was sure there HAD to be a gluten free chocolate chip cookie in a mug recipe. Certainly not too much to ask, right?
Well I found this gem and it was delish! I doubled it thinking it was far too little and I may have done myself in there. It tasted very cookie-like and was just what I needed to finish my Friday night. The recipe is written vegan. I happen to love butter so I replaced the applesauce with an equal amount of butter (it really helps to have cooking knowledge to know what ingredients are for and how to swap them!) and my yogurt was dairy. I didn’t measure my chocolate chips, I just added until it looked good.
I needed to cook it slightly longer than it says but it was still quite fast. It was really good!

Clearly, I'm no food stylist.

Clearly, I’m no food stylist.

I finished it all off with a glass of Moscato and I was one happy, gluten free, camper!

Aren't my wine glasses gorgeous?!

Aren’t my wine glasses gorgeous?!


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Candy Unjunked!

I was at the grocery store yesterday picking up a few random items we needed. As I walked down the coffee and tea aisle to get coffee filters I noticed a small cardboard display stand off to the side. It had candy in it but I had never seen this kind of candy before.
It is called Unreal Candy. I could see from the display that their tagline is “Candy Unjunked”. Being that I prefer natural things and avoid chemicals in our food I had to take a closer look to see just how unjunked this candy really is.
Looking at the label I found that Unreal Candy contains:
No corn syrup
No partially hydrogenated Oils
No artificial ingredients (that’s flavors or colors, people!)
No GMOs
No preservatives
Low glycemic index

So right now you are probably thinking, as I did, are you sure this is CANDY?? I had to purchase a few to try for myself. They have 5 products: the equivalent of plain M&Ms, the equivalent of peanut M&Ms, peanut butter cups, a candy bar like Milkyway, and a candy bar like a snickers. I chose peanut butter cups (my husband’s favorite candy) and candy coated chocolates (like M&Ms).

Hubby and I tried each kind of candy. I wanted his opinion as I tend to give healthy and natural products a bit more leeway because I WANT to like them.

Let me tell you, we both LOVED these candies. My Reese’s addicted husband actually was very happy with these PB cups and found them worthy of taking the place of his beloved candy. They were really delicious and didn’t have that fake food taste. You know, that waxy chocolate after taste, that super high sugar content (er, HFCS actually) that makes your teeth ache as you chew? None of that! And am I the only one who actually tastes the food dyes on M&Ms?? They have always been a fave candy of mine but since I cut food dyes out of our house I can actually taste them when I eat them (and they do NOT taste good, in case you were wondering).
The candy coating on the chocolates is colored with things like beet root juice and purple cabbage juice. I just think that is fabulous! And as you can see from the picture the colors are earthy and somewhat jewel-like. They’re quite pretty.
I recommend you look into Unreal Candy to see the difference for yourself. Now that I have had two of their 5 products I’m thinking I need a few more things from the store… 😉


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Product Review: Re-Play Utensils

I’m no one to believe babies need a zillion tiny products just for them. I fully believe there are several marketing geniuses out there laughing their heads off as they roll in our money as we hold useless contraptions that we were told we HAD to have to care for a baby.
That being said, I do find some items in the adult world NEED to be scaled down to suit toddlers. One of these things is utensils. If you have ever watched a 2-year-old struggle to manuever a large fork into her mouth you understand. It’s sort of like she is pole-vaulting instead of eating macaroni and cheese.
There are dozens of brands and styles of kid-sized utensils. I am certainly not an expert or even highly opinionated on any of these being better or worse. There are designs that are supposed to suit certain ages, help food stay on better, curve this way or that to accommodate the fist-hold of a toddler. I haven’t dug into all of this. We just have some small forks and spoons and we use them.

But I recently got the opportunity to try out some kid sized utensils from Re-Play. I signed right up. Not because I can’t resist something free, no matter what it is (that’s my big sister!). Not because they have some genius design that gets the food into junior’s mouth instead of on his shirt (promise all you want, a kid is a kid). These intrigued me because they are…recycled!
Re-Play products are made of recycled milk jugs! They use curbside collected HDPE plastic to make their utensils, bowls, cups, and divided dishes. They are also made in the USA and BPA, phthalate and PVC free. Even their packaging (which is wonderfully minimal) is made from recycled material.
They feel fairly lightweight while still feeling sturdy. My daughter used the spoon this morning to eat her daily oatmeal. I do like that the handle is a bit wide and the scoop of the spoon was a great size (not as big as a grown up one but not so tiny she can barely get any food on it).
So if you are going to buy kid-sized utensils, bowls and the like anyway, why not feel good about buying ones that are better for the earth and your kiddo. I may have gotten mine for free but I will totally be buying more things from Re-Play.

*Disclaimer: I was not paid to write this.  They did not give me the free utensils conditionally on a good review or any whatsoever.  I am reviewing this product from my own desire to do so and I genuinely like what they are doing.


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A Blog is Born

There are 3 things that I tend to be very passionate about in my life:

  • Healthy Living
  • Being kind to our environment
  • Motherhood

And so, a Blog is born. Lean Green Mommy Machine. I hope for this to be a place to share my journey and hopefully inspire others to be a little more lean, a little more green and survive the day as a mommy!

S