Sharing the Wealth.

I’ve got a serious problem.

My brain is wanting to do things my body simply cannot keep up with. My cooking/baking/kitchen creating is out of control! I am in so much pain right now (and every night) from standing in the kitchen so long every day making muffins, dinners, snacks, pancakes… you name it. Chopping, dicing, kneading, pureeing, mixing, grating – the ridiculous list goes on and on. I can’t help myself! It’s a severe form of nesting, I’m most positive.

I can’t stop.

Meanwhile, my back and my heels and my hips are crying out for me to sit. It’s rough; a daily internal battle. Although, I do love it. I’m enjoying cooking and creating so much! I’m enjoying shoving vegetables wherever I can and finding new recipes that really suit our family. I love that Leah gets excited now when she sees a carrot or a zucchini or something else green because she knows she’s getting “cake” soon. I love spending time with her in the kitchen teaching her about food even if I have stabbing pains running through my heels. I love that I can get my “cake” fix by eating a muffin filled with sweet potatoes and carrots and apples and flax. I love when Kyle says things like, “oh, you and your carrots” when I shove a new “power” muffin down his throat.  I’m getting obsessed with cook books and new baking tools, and getting up close and personal with my food processor. It’s quite the beneficial pregnancy symptom, I must say.

I figured I’d share the wealth a little. I hate when people say that vegetables taste good. No, they don’t. They taste like vegetables. Or worse, I hate when people say they’d rather eat a green bean than a piece of cake. Gimme a break, you’re obviously eating the wrong cake. But with this list of my favorites so far… you can come pretty darn close to enjoying all things healthy. And if you don’t, well, it’s not my fault. I must be a better cook. 🙂

http://greatist.com/health/recipe-whole-wheat-zucchini-muffins

Yum. These started it all. Now, keep in mind, they aren’t actually cake – they do taste healthy. But they’re pretty stinking good. Note no sugar or white flour – how we like to keep it around here. I’ve been known to throw a grated apple and carrot in them as well. If Kyle can eat them, and Leah can say, “yummmmy” – you can eat them, too. Do your body a favor and buy a zucchini – a whole world will be opened up to you.

http://www.wholefoodsmarket.com/recipe/carrot-apple-muffins

These are Leah’s favorite. They do have white sugar and I’ve made them with it and without – not a ton of difference, one is a tad more sweet, duh. I think I even put in some pure maple syrup on one batch instead of the white sugar. (I tend to just “dump” things in as I go).

http://www.5dollardinners.com/black-bean-coconut-brownies/

Here’s a story about these little gems – I hate beans. Cannot handle them under any circumstances… until they were put in brownie form. And actually, I still put them in a muffin pan so they were more like cupcakes. I gagged my way through pureeing the beans – but it was worth it. You’ll see here – 2 cups of sugar. That’s just not allowed. So I allowed 1 cup of sugar (because I was still leery of the beans), and substituted one cup of applesauce and cut down to 1/4c of almond milk. (Ps, anytime it says “milk” just know that I use almond). I also left out the coconut… because I had none. But man – these are yummy little suckers. Leah really thought she was getting cake with these little bites of muffin goodness. I kept imagining spreading icing on them… but didn’t. But if you did, I promise, you would think you were eating cake.

http://www.yummly.com/recipe/Whole-wheat-sweet-potato-muffins-333742?columns=4&position=2%2F36

Yum. What a great fall muffin… or late summer muffin. I’m not sure about the fancy “whole wheat pastry flour” I just used whole wheat flour and they were still delicious. I also added an apple. Next time I’ll throw a carrot in there, why the heck not. Besides adding the apple, and a little more milk cause the batter was so thick… I didn’t change anything. I omitted the glaze, but I did put some butter and brown sugar on Leah’s this morning because it seemed like a Sunday morning thing to do.

http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/curtis-aikens/whole-wheat-pizza-dough-recipe/index.html

This one got the literal thumbs up from Kyle. That’s hard to come by! But it was seriously, so good. The best homemade pizza crust I’ve ever made, I can promise you that. And whole wheat to top it off. Leah ate piece after piece until her plate was empty. And hers had very little on it! It was just the right amount of crispy and doughy. The best thing about homemade pizza is everyone can have whatever they want. Leah got the no cheese side, Kyle got the turkey sausage, turkey bacon, and turkey pepperoni, and I got the peppers, onions, bacon and pepperoni. Yum, yum, yum. I plan to make a few of these ahead and freeze them. We were all satisfied after just one slice, too. Also, because I was feeling crazy, I put a little garlic/butter (dairy free butter) on the crust. And I didn’t make 4 little pizzas, I just made one big one.

A tip for all of the above (except the pizza) – 2TBLS of flax can be added without affecting anything. And extra cinnamon is always a good thing. I have learned that muffins are the easiest breakfast in the world, and the most guilt free snack. The hard part has become choosing between the orange veggie muffins or the green veggie muffins.

That should do it for now. My top 5. I’ve made some duds, but the overwhelming theme has been success. Go get yourself a muffin pan and join in on the fun! If you’ll excuse me, though, I’m going to crash in my bed and rest my body before another long day in the kitchen.

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Yum.

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