With the coronavirus pandemic bringing global tourism to an abrupt halt, travel writer Shivya Nath shares her ideas for safe, responsible exploration.We Can’t Travel, But the World Is Still Ours to Explore — Discover
With the end of 2019 quickly approaching, I have fond memories that circle my mind daily. I would like to share that growing up Italian with immigrant parents, many people would make comments that it was like being in Italy when they entered our home. They were right!
However, I was very fortunate to have a family that invited and welcomed everyone into our home. With that we had many traditions that carried over from not only Italy but all over the world. The ethnicity did not end with Italians but with beautiful individuals from everywhere.
With the start of the New Year we believed that eating certain foods would bring luck, health, happiness and of course prosperity. A couple of foods to share with you that I distinctly remember eating on new year’s day were lentil soup and pork sausage or roasted pork. Lentils represent coins, wealth as well as health. Sausage or pork has an abundance of fat which symbolizes abundance and wealth. We also dark green, sautéed broccolini which also represented health and money. Finally, dried figs were served at our house, a sign of wisdom. My mother, Armida enjoyed serving the figs cut in half with a piece of walnut between the halves. Yummy!
Although regions of Italy and the world all celebrate differently, no matter where you are on the globe we all have traditions or perhaps they are fun superstitions. Find yours today and have fun with it for your family. However you celebrate, I wish you much joy and happiness!
Cheers to a Happy New Year!
Sunday Morning Banana Waffles
1 cup of Unbleached White Flour (can be substituted for Whole Wheat)
½ cup of Rolled Oats
2 teaspoons of Baking Powder
½ teaspoon of Cinnamon
¾ cup of Milk
¼ of Greek Vanilla Yogurt
1 teaspoon of Vanilla
1 large banana
2 Tablespoons of Avocado Oil (can be substituted for any oil)
Walnuts or Mini-Chocolate Chips
In a blender add rolled oats, milk, eggs, yogurt, vanilla, banana, oil and cinnamon, blend well. Add in baking powder for a quick spin. Pour batter into a bowl and finally stir in the flour without over mixing. If you would like the add-ins, when the batter hits the hot waffle iron I sprinkle them in as requested by my very distinguished kid’s tastes.
Additional sliced bananas on top with warm honey or maple syrup, whip cream with additional chocolate chips on top or simply eat them with your favorite syrup. Powdered sugar.
Today my choice is Huckleberry Syrup from Montana.
Happy Sunday! Today, I decided to make donuts for the kids. Super easy and a fun recipe that takes only minutes to make. If you do “nut” have a donut pan you can use a mini muffin pan too!
2 tablespoons of canola oil
1 large egg
1/2 cup of milk
1/2 teaspoon of pure vanilla extract
1/3 cup of unbleached granulated sugar
1/2 cup of whole wheat flour
1/2 cup of unbleached white flour
1 teaspoon of baking powder
1/2 teaspoon of salt
1/4 cup of unbleached granulated sugar
1 teaspoon of cinnamon
Preheat oven to 350 F. Grease your pan with non-stick cooking spray of your choice.
In a large bowl whisk together oil and egg until combined. Add the milk and vanilla until they have all come together.
Stir in the dry ingredients, until combined, do “nut” over mix. Fill your pans 3/4 full and bake about 8 minutes or until the donuts spring back.
While they donuts are baking, mix the cinnamon sugar topping in a plate.
Let the donuts cool about 5 minutes in the pan and roll or dip them in the cinnamon sugar.
Simple, fresh Sunday morning donuts! Enjoy… and please share this recipe and all of Creative Caribe’s creations with your friends and family!!!
Zucchini!!! YES…or NO, maybe way too much. It is great when it is in season and so fresh whether it is from a generous neighbor’s garden (thankful), your own garden, a local farmer’s market or grocery store near you please don’t forget to appreciate it, the season is short.
It seems like there is an overabundance for some people who have gardens, but in actually it is a very versatile and easy to utilize vegetable that can be incorporated into savory or sweet recipes with a mild flavor in my opinion.
So on this overcast Sunday morning, here is the recipe that I bring from my kitchen to yours:
Easy and Moist Zucchini Bread by Creative Caribe
1 1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose white flour
1/2 teaspoon of salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 packet of Dr. Oetker Vanilla Sugar
1/8 teaspoon of baking powder
3/4 cup of unbleached granulated sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons of vanilla extract
1/2 cup of Canola Oil
1 1/2 cups finely grated zucchini
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 C). Non-greased glass loaf pan. Baking time is about 1 hour.
Sift together flour, salt, baking soda, cinnamon and flour.
Beat eggs, adding both granulated and vanilla sugar, vanilla and oil. Add the shredded zucchini. Finally, take the liquid and add it to the dry ingredients do not over mix. For me, I mix the entire recipe by hand so as to not over mix the batter which takes about 10 minutes total.
Please share the love (and zucchini if you have an overabundance) with your friends and neighbors by reposting this recipe!
Happy Holidays to all! I hope they have been memorable to all of you so far. Although Christmas has come and gone, it is never too late to “let them bake” and share good cheer for the upcoming New Year!
So whatever your Family’s favorite, take some time to let your creativity fly (perhaps a little flour and sprinkles too) in your kitchen and have some laughs. Making the mess is half the fun and your outcome will be purely memorable. Enjoy the moment!
To follow-up with the last post…sharing some more love and ideas!
These are my essentials for a stocked pantry. I don’t meal plan much anymore, instead I have embraced intuitive eating (eating specifically what my body craves that day) and it feels so right. Before, I used to feel hemmed in to whatever I had planned that day to eat. If I ended up feeling like […]
After a long unexpected hiatus…I hope everyone reading this had a wonderful healthy summer, creating memories, having fun and sharing love where ever your travels led you.
With the beginning of the academic year for most, life becomes busier and more chaotic for some. As we look ahead to our busy weeks, I thought the following article is a great reminder to many of us.
Do you start the week with the best of intentions to head to the farmer’s market or grocery store and buy, chop and prep all the produce? To get allll the nutrients from your fruits and veggies and radiate a healthy glow as you conquer the week?
You can sip on this Mango Lassi with Cardamom and Pistachio as a breakfast or Brunch or Lunch or Dinner. No Kidding. This can serve as either a protein packed delicious breakfast in the morning or a delicious dessert in a glass in the evenings. This world-famous drink is filled with probiotic from the Greek […]
Recently, my son had to say “farewell” or “see you later” to one of his dearest friends who had been relocated here in a transient situation like many of us. Their dear teacher gave me permission to bring in some treats, with that….
Thinking and thinking what to bring in???? Something easy to transport, something the kids will enjoy…cupcakes, no! Something simpler. What did this little boy from Thailand truly enjoy, you ask? None other than good old-fashioned chocolate chip cookies. Bingo!
With that I made a giant chocolate chip cookie in a pizza pan, served to the children like a slice of pizza!
Added a little hand-made message and voila, it felt genius but really just FUN!!!!
I used a classic chocolate chip recipe and filled the pizza pan with all the dough. Cooking time varies based on you pizza pan, but approximately 20 minutes or until golden at 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
What else can you tell your nine year old son when he is so sad…It is just CRUMBY to see your friend go! and yes, you will miss him but thanks for technology and the sometimes “small” world where we live, you may cross paths again soon!
With that a BIG HUG….
Nothing says “I love you” on Valentine’s Day like homemade sweet treats. This year, spread the love while getting the kids into the kitchen with one of these family-friendly Valentine’s Day recipes. From hand-rolling rich chocolate truffles to decorating sugar cookies, kids will feel proud of their creations and empowered in the kitchen. Plus, these […]
¾ cups coconut oil
2 large eggs
¼ cup Honey
2 teaspoons of vanilla
1 teaspoon of cinnamon
½ teaspoon baking soda
¾ cup unbleached sugar (if you like sweeter cookies add an extra ¼ cup of sugar)
3 cups of rolled oats
1 cup of unbleached White flour
½ cup of whole wheat flour
½ cup of unsweetened cocoa
Preheat oven to 325 F °.
In a blender process the 3 cups of rolled oats, until you reach a consistency similar to flour. Add coconut oil, eggs, honey, vanilla and cinnamon, blend well. In a seperate bowl stir together sugar, cocoa, flour and baking soda. Add liquid from blender into bowl and mix either by hand or with a mixer until everthing is well combined. The cookie dough will be thick.
On a silicone mate or parchment paper drop 1 ½ inches of cookie dough about 2 inches apart. Bake for 12 minutes .
Makes approximately 36 cookies. Freeze and enjoy whenever you need a chocolatey wholesome snack.
If you are like me and your kids are still on holiday vacation, start their day with a little fun that’s simple.
Breakfast the first meal of the day, get them involved. We typically make pancakes once per week. Sometimes they are simple with just whole grain flour other times they may have fruit and chocolate chips in them.
For this particular activity I chose a simple recipe as follows:
1/2 cup of whole wheat flour
1/2 cup of white unbleached flour
2 teaspoons of baking powder
1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon
1 teaspoon of salt
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 egg, beaten
1 cup of 2 % milk or almond milk
2 Tablespoons of coconut oil
Mix all dry ingredients. Make a well in the middle and add all the liquids. Stir until smooth. Let rest a few minutes.
Heat a lightly oiled griddle or frying pan. Pour about a 1/4 cup for each pancake. Cook until golden brown. Set aside.
Grab some cookie cutters and whatever toppings your kids love chocolate hazelnut spread, jams, honey, peanut butter…you get the idea.
Let them cut away their shapes. Top and even sandwich them together for great morning activity to start the day out. Our kids help with the entire process but if you want to limit the mess have the stacks ready to go for when they wake up–Surprise!
The remaining scraps do not go to waste, they become breakfast!
After a bit of a hiatus…I am back.
Something fun and easy you can do with your kids. Maybe “spruce” up your house or brighten someone’s day.
It is my opinion that fresh flowers or greenery always brighten up a space. If you are also like me, well, I am trying to cut corners and expenses. Buying fresh flowers, or cultivating them from your garden or a friend’s is not always feasible especially in different places on the globe.
Do you know that spruce or evergreen tree in your yard? It is a great option to make a simple arrangement and enjoy it’s natural scent.
Try the following:
1 glass vase, recycled glass bottle or an unmatched old glass from your kitchen
Several pine cones, rocks, fabric scraps ( I found felt to work great) or sticks (whatever you find lying around outside or inside for that matter)
Depending on the size of your vase/cup fresh cut spruce or pine (anything green) different lengths to arrange
Place the objects either pinecones, rocks, small pieces of sticks in the bottom of the vase/glass so it is about a 2/3 full. Arrange your fresh cut limbs. The objects you placed in the bottom will hold up your branches. I added water to keep these alive a bit longer.
Voile…easy and inexpensive!
Check out this simple holiday design for more ideas….
As soon as the weather warms up and the days get brighter, we all want to change our eating habits. There’s just something about an increase in heat that makes you want to go for fresher, lighter, and less indulgent food choices. But, at the same time, you still want to be able to enjoy […]
Summer is here, and that means many delicious flavours of ice cream in overload! From chocolate chip to peanut butter-jelly and from blueberry sorbet to strawberry cheesecake, choice in abundance! But as much as I love ice cream, a healthy lifestyle and body means a lot to me as well.
Its almost summer! You know what that means- tons of parties, picnics, and traveling! Let us prepare you for the sunny season with our top ten summer recipes. With everything from savory fish tacos to tart berry sorbet, we’ve got you covered with your ultimate summer menu whether you’re relaxing by the pool or partying with friends all summer long.
Papaya and Mango…YUM!
After a busy weekend of fun. I looked at my counter and yes, there they were looking back at me… very ripe mangos and papaya. This fruit is delicious in its peak, but after that not so tasty fresh anymore. Having you found yourself in this exact situation? Don’t waste it!
After washing the fruit and removing the skin and seeds, I took all the meat of the fruits and chopped them roughly. They were than placed into a sauce pan to cook down slowly until thickened with no residual water remaining in the pan from the fruit. Pureed in a blender and presto, fresh jam with no added sugar. The beauty of most fruits is that they have so much natural sweetness and rich flavor when cooked down in a very ripe state.
I am storing in the refrigerator to use on anything from toast to rice cakes to crackers or as a natural sweetener in baked goods in place of applesauce. You may also freeze if you are not into the process of canning and your refrigerator is overfull at the moment.
Don’t worry, you can do this with any combination of fruits you choose and have available to you at your spot on the globe. We just happen to be in a tropical fruit paradise and eating it up. YUMMY!
Check out these super cute and easy Easter baskets that you can make really anytime of the year and customize for anyone.
Why spend money on expensive store Easter baskets when you can create your own fabulous designs? Stuck for ideas? Lucky for you, Good Housekeeping has a selection of baskets for everyone on the Bunny’s list! Easter Baskets
How many times have you found yourself with too many over ripe bananas to eat? Good timing this time. You may have guests over the Spring/Easter vacation staying with you or you may want to prepare ahead for a Sunday brunch, these bananas are not going in the freezer for smoothies this time.
I have derived a quick, easy, sugar and yes, fat free muffin or bread if you prefer, just adjust baking times accordingly. Take a look below and try this new one fresh out of the kitchen today!
Anytime you try one of the recipes please do not forget to share the love by passing it along and any feedback you have for me is always welcome. Happy Baking….
Honey Choco Chip Banana Muffins
4 small, Ripe Bananas
¾ cup Honey
½ teaspoon Pure Vanilla Extract
1 teaspoon Cinnamon
1 teaspoon Baking Soda
1 cup White Whole Wheat High Protein Flour (or any other whole grain or wheat flour you choose)
1 cup White Unbleached Flour
1/3 cup Milk Chocolate Chips
Preheat oven to 350 degrees Farenheit.
In a large bowl place ripe bananas and mash with fork. Add eggs, honey, vanilla, cinnamon and mix at médium speed until a smooth consistency is achieved. Add flour, one cup at a time at low speed when well combined stir in chocolate chips. Spoon batter (or use an ice cream scooper) into a lightly sprayed or lined cupcake pan for approximately 18 minutes or until golden. I filled the cupcake liners only half way to make medium sized muffins. Makes approximately 24 medium muffins.
More Carrots! Growing up, this brightly colored, happy veggie reminds me of Spring. Even today, I really enjoy the simplicity of eating carrot sticks dipped in peanut butter as when we were kids. The other ingredient in the recipe below that reminds me of the season upon us is white chocolate. Feeling overly creative recently, I starting mixing keeping my friends who are gluten intolerant at heart. The end result…
Gluten Free Nutty Carrot Treats
1 1/3 cups Garbanzo/Fava Gluten Free Flou
2 cups Rolled Oats
½ cup Natural Peanut Butter, or your preference of seed/nut butter
½ cup Raw Unbleached Sugar
½ teaspoon Baking Soda
½ cup Honey
1 teaspoon Pure Vanilla Extract
1 cup Grated Carrots
½ cup of White Chocolate Chips or Raisins
In a blender grind the rolled oats until they are the consistency you like and place in a large mixing bowl with flour and baking soda. Whisk all dry ingredients together. In the same blender add eggs, peanut butter, honey, sugar and vanilla. Blend for about 30 seconds. Add grated carrots and continue to blend until smooth. Pour the liquid into the dry ingredients and mix well. Finally, stir in the chocolate chips or raisins. Spread mixture onto a parchment or silicone lined 9” x 13” pan for best results.
Bake at 350 degrees Farenheit for approximately 18-20 minutes. Cool and cut into bars or squares. Makes approximately 36 squares.
Store in the freezer for a quick snack for lunches or after school or on your way to work in the morning.
Tasty observation… I took a few out of the freezer for a snack and noticed they seemed more flavorful and moister.
Local carrots. Giant, sweet in flavor and colorful.
Since we are so fortunate to have an abundance of produce in our area of the world, it is extra convenient to incorporate into our diets creatively. The recipe below is easy to make ahead and freeze for a quick snack any time of day. Great for little hands that enjoy mini cakes with a healthy twist. “Popability” for adults, easy to pop in your mouth and eat on the run. After baking and cooling, I typically place 2-3 mini cakes in a plastic snack bag (or small containers) and place in a larger freezer container so they are ready to go. A prepackaged snack.
Carrot Honey Mini Cakes
1/2 cup of Coconut Oil
2/3 cup of Honey
1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract
1 teaspoon Cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon Ground Ginger
2 teaspoons Baking Powder
1/4 teaspoon Baking Soda
1 cup of Finely Shredded Carrots
1 cup of Whole Wheat Flour
1 cup Non-Bromated/Bleached White Flour
In a large bowl beat oil, honey, eggs, vanilla and spices. Stir in carrot. Add all dry ingredients and mix until well combined. Do not over mix. Spray your mini cupcake pans with oil or organic cooking spray. If you have small cupcake liners that would be even better to eliminate any extra clean up. Spoon the batter into each cupcake cup until approximately ¾ full. Makes approximately 36 mini cakes.
Bake at 350 degrees Farenheit for 10-12 minutes or until golden.
Gluten & Sugar Free White Chocolate Cranberry Bars
2/3 cup of Coconut Oil
1/3 cup of Honey
2 large Eggs
2 teaspoons of Vanilla Extract
1 ½ cups Rolled Oats
1 ½ cups of Garbanzo and Fava Flour
1 teaspoon of Baking Soda
¾ cup of Dried Cranberries, chopped (or your preferred dried fruit)
¾ cup of White Chocolate Chunks or Chips, chopped
Preheat oven to 350 degrees Farenheit. In the blender pulse the chocolate and cranberries together to chop them into smaller pieces that are easier to disrtubute in the batter. In a seperate bowl mix oil, honey, eggs, and vanilla. Mix the rolled oats with the liquid, add baking soda and flour combining thoroughly. Finally add your chopped dried fruit and chocolate. Use a parchment lined, 9”x13” pan to bake for approximately 18-20 minutes or until Golden. Cool completely in pan before cutting. Makes approximately 48 small squares, but they can be easily cut into bars and stored in freezer. Portable and crispy.
One problem, I can’t stop eating them with my coffee!
Pure Love Granola Bars
Pure Love Granola Bars are made with whole grains and kiss of chocolate to leave you satisfied. They are gluten free and nut free. Super excited for you to give it a try, your family will be glad you did.
4 cups of rolled oats
3/4 cups of unsalted, ground sunflower seeds
1/4 cup chia seeds
1/2 cup of milk chocolate chips (semi-sweet or dark whichever is your preference)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/2 cup of honey
1/4 cup of coconut oil
In a large microwave proof bowl or on the stove top (which I prefer) add honey, coconut oil, vanilla and warm up so they are a nice thin consistency for about a couple minutes on medium heat. If using a microwave start with 30 seconds, depending of the strength of your oven. Leave the pot on the warm burner stir in chia seeds, ground sunflower seeds, baking soda, cinnamon, salt and finally add the rolled oats. When everything is blended nicely add the chocolate chips and stir until they are completely melted coating all the other ingredients.
Pour mixture onto a 9×13″ cookie sheet lined with parchment paper and spread evenly with the back of a rubber spatula. After the mixture is spread evenly cover with a sheet of wax paper, use a rolling pin to smooth it out. Remove wax paper and bake for approximately 15 minutes or until dark golden on the edges at 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Leave in pan to cool for 30 minutes before cutting into bars. Makes approximately 30 bars.
For small hands, I sometimes cut into small squares, but be creative. Store them in the freezer for freshness. Great snack for both kids and adults!
With an insatiable thirst for adventure and travel, the one thing that has always grounded me is the love for cooking. The kitchen is where many of my fondest memories were shared with my Mamma, Armida.
The kitchen is where we (she) created magical foods. I say magical based on the amount of friends and family fed not to mention the unbelievable quality that came out of my Mamma’s kitchen. She always used the best ingredients. Her dedication and attention to detail were seen in her natural talent, it was a gift.
However, it is not only the food, but the conversations had while prepping, washing and cooking that resonate in my heart. You can not recreate what is gone, but carry those fond memories with you and share the passion ingrained in you without ever having known it was there all along.
It is for the smiles that cooking, eating and sharing bring to whoever and wherever you are in the world that I have created this blog. I want to share the LOVE!
If you’re looking for the perfect vegan valentine’s day dessert, this is it! This chocolate orange avocado mousse for two comes together in 30 minutes and makes for the perfect dessert 🙂Vegan Chocolate Orange Avocado Mousse (for two) — Lifestyle of a Foodie
With the change of seasons still upon us in different parts of the world, let’s remember to change it up and have some fun!
We sometimes get stagnate in the kitchen or at the table especially with the kids by constantly reminding of table manners and good eating habits. What if we said instead, let’s add some color to our worlds and play with our food?
This could go very bad or very good. Here is how we made it go very good at breakfast time recently. Make your favorite waffle or pancake recipe in whatever shape, perhaps offer a topping or several, many options of colorful fruits and berries. This is what we came up with…
Design and images produced by our two lovely little chefs! Any meal of the day is great because it engages your kids with what goes in their body and that should be a positive not a negative. It allows them to have some creative freedom and helps them learn that colorful foods are exciting and can taste great too. Whatever you do, have fun and enjoy the ride!