Dr. Kracker Whole Foods Baking Event

I was recently invited to a private baking event for Dr. Kracker‘s Crackers here in Manhattan hosted by Dr. Kracker, himself.

It was such a pleasure to meet him and bake his yummy Dr. Kracker crackers right alongside of him…talk about exciting and hands-on learning.

We baked a vast array of cracker and flatbread flavors including my favorite the Klassic 3 Seed.


All of the baking took place at Whole Foods Market here in Manhattan…how adorable is this kitchen?

Dr. Kracker even had samplings of his tasty crackers: the new Chocolate flavor, Seeded Spelt and Cherry Semolina.

It’s hard to believe that I created these cute little crackers from scratch with Dr. Kracker…I just love his packaging…the flatbread package is on the left and the square crackers are on the right…both varieties are so tasty.

Here is Dr. Kracker explaining his baking tips and sharing his knowledge and expertise for his famous crackers.

Here is what I started with…

And after a little bit of instruction and demos…I created my very own Dr.Kracker crackers.

Thank you, Dr. Kracker for a wonderful cracker baking event…I had a wonderful time!

Be sure to check out my Dr.Kracker recipes on the Dr.Kracker website for some tasty ideas and yummy snacks.

Have you tried Dr.Kracker’s crackers?

If so, what are your favorite flavors?

And Now For…In The News

Whole Foods Market To Grow it’s own Produce

Modified Peanuts May Cut Risk of Allergic Reactions

Sears to Bring Food to Your Fridge

Spices Don’t Have Satiety Benefits

Hummus Catches On In America

Mollie Katzen: Connecting Food and People

Inexperienced Female Athletes Risk Health Problems

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Giveaway: Purely Elizabeth Gluten-Free Baking Mixes

I am thrilled to announce my giveaway for 3 Purely Elizabeth Gluten-Free Baking Mixes to 1 lucky Healthy Apple reader!

I recently had the opportunity to meet Elizabeth (as we are both BU and IIN graduates) and chat with her about her incredible gluten-free baking mixes.  My clients and I love the pancake and muffin mixes –my favorite is the Ultimate Cacao Muffins…these muffins are so tasty and perfect for a morning breakfast with nut butter, an afternoon treat with Greek yogurt or an evening dessert with a fresh icing.  Yum…

Have any of you tried these Purely Elizabeth baking mixes? If not, now’s your time to taste them with this great giveaway.  Also, I will be selling the Purely Elizabeth products on my website through this link, so you can easily purchase the products right here at The Healthy Apple without having to search for them in your health food store.

Living a gluten-free life isn’t so easy for us gluten-intolerant folks and let me tell you, finding a gluten-free and delicious baking mix is close to impossible…I honestly have not come across a tasty baking mix until I tried Purely Elizabeth’s products…they’re easy and simple to create…just follow the directions on the back of the package and add few ingredients.  Each baking mix is purely created from whole grains, flax and chia seeds…doesn’t that sound delish?

So, here’s your chance to win this gluten-free Purely Elizabeth Baking Mix Giveaway.

To enter, ‘purely’:

1). View the Purely Elizabeth website and tell me what baking mix you’d like to try.
2). Post this giveaway on your blog. Leave a comment telling me you did.
3). Tweet this Giveaway post! Leave me a third comment telling me you did.

Each comment counts as an entry.

Good Luck; I will be picking a winner on Friday evening, 5PM EST.

And speaking of Gluten-Free, be sure to check out my latest gluten-free pastas in my store!

Gingerbread Cookies

How adorable are these cute little gingerbread men and women? I couldn’t resist…as with every year I have to make my special gingerbread people.  It’s a fun, festive ritual that I take part in and enjoy every second of the process from grading cutting shapes with my cookie cutters to decorating the clothes and features on the gingerbread people.  Here is a wonderfully delicious gingerbread recipe that will surely compliment your gingerbread house this season.

I was so excited to make these gingerbread guys and gals because I used two of my new Open Sky products, my Winco Aluminum Rolling Pin, which was fabulous and created an even and smooth surface for my cookie cutters and my Copper Bowl, which was perfect for mixing my ingredients to create the gingerbread dough.

Ingredients

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3 cups whole-wheat flour
  • 1 ½ tsp. baking soda
  • 1 ½ tsp. cinnamon
  • 1 tsp. ginger
  • ½ tsp. cloves
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • 2 Tbsp. wheat germ
  • ¼ cup ground flax seeds
  • 1 stick butter, unsalted and softened
  • 1 tsp. honey or agave nectar
  • ¼ cup oil
  • 1 cup sugar or stevia
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup molasses
  • 2 Tbsp. balsamic vinegar

Directions

  • Preheat oven to 350°F. Coat several baking sheets with cooking spray or line with parchment paper.
  • In a large bowl combine whole-wheat flour, all-purpose flour, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger, cloves, flax seeds, wheat germ and salt; mix well. Beat butter, honey, oil and sugar in another large bowl with an electric mixer until it forms a creamy texture.
  • Add egg, molasses and balsamic vinegar; beat until combined. Add the dry ingredients and stir to combine.
  • Divide the dough into 4 equal portions, wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate until chilled, at least 3 hours or overnight.
  • On a floured surface, roll each portion separately to create a 1/4 inch thickness. Cut cookies using cookie festive cutters. Combine scraps and roll dough again to make additional cookies.
  • Place cookies on baking sheets.
  • Bake the cookies, about 10 to 12 minutes or until golden brown.
  • Transfer to a wire rack to cool.
  • Decorate with icing and personalize each gingerbread man and woman.

In The News…

95% Celiac Disease Sufferers Go Undiagnosed

Companies Fall Short in Advertising Health Foods To Children

2010 Predicted Food Trends

Coffee and Tea May Lower Type 2 Diabetes Risk

Try a One Size Fits All Dinner for Vegetarians and Meat Eaters

Chef Creates Healthy Pizza

Chocolate Cinnamon Bread Pudding

Who doesn’t love bread pudding? So soft and smooth, so incredibly moist…yum, I’m getting hungry just thinking about it.  I’ve created a healthy gluten-free bread pudding that is made with raw cacao and macadamia nuts, which are two ingredients that are sure to knock your socks off with one bite.  This recipe is not too rich, yet not dull either…I’ve added the perfect touch of natural sweetness to keep your taste buds dancing and your belly trim during this holiday season.  And what is a recipe without cinnamon? Well, it surely is not a recipe unless I’ve tossed a pinch of cinnamon in…as it truly is one of my favorite ingredients to use.  Enjoy this bread pudding with your friends and family this holiday season for a sure crowd pleaser.

Ingredients

  • 5 slices gluten-free bread, torn into small pieces
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup rice milk
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • ¼ cup raw cacao powder
  • 2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 ½ tsp. cinnamon
  • ¼ cup macadamia nuts, purred in food processor
  • 1 ounce semisweet chocolate chips
  • Topping: Oikos Greek plain yogurt
  • Topping: Fresh mint leaves
  • Topping: Unsweetened coconut flakes

Directions

  • Preheat oven to 350°F. Coat an 8-inch square baking dish with nonstick cooking spray. Spread bread in the dish in an even layer.
  • Whisk eggs in a medium bowl. Add rice milk, sugar, raw cacao, vanilla and cinnamon; whisk the mixture until the sugar and cocoa dissolve. Pour the cocoa mixture over the bread. Mix in any un-soaked bread pieces. Sprinkle pureed macadamia nuts and chocolate over the top and let stand for 15 minutes.
  • Bake until golden brown, puffed and set in the middle, about 45 minutes. Serve warm, with a scoop of Greek yogurt, a fresh mint leaf and a sprinkle of unsweetened coconut on top.

Bread pudding is such a unique dessert, I’d love to hear your feedback on this recipe as it’s one of my favorites to create.

Healthy Holiday Baking Tips

Here are a few secrets to pair-down your traditional holiday recipes to easily create a healthy alternative.  Enjoy these tips in your kitchen when baking during this holiday season.


  • Replace a portion of the butter, shortening or margarine with heart-healthy oils such as canola or olive oil.
  • Combine your favorite fruits and vegetables such as apples, carrots and parsnips in a food processor or blender and blend until pureed; this creates a naturally sweet alternative to fat-laden butter.  Using fruit as a replacement in recipes ensures your cookies have a chewy and cake-like texture.
  • When faced with a time crunch, opt for canned pumpkin or canned sweet potato to sweeten your dish in place of some of the butter, margarine or shortening.  You can also add store-bought apple sauce, apple butter, pear butter and prune puree, which are all located in the baking aisle of your food store.
  • Swapping Greek yogurt or low fat ricotta cheese for full-fat cream cheese in dessert recipes is a sure taste-bud pleaser without packing on the guilt in every bite.
  • Moreover, nontraditional ingredients such as nonfat buttermilk and pure fruit juices such as apple, orange and cranberry work wonders when replacing a portion of the butter in recipes.
  • Opt for whole wheat flour, rolled oats or rice flour instead of all-purpose white flour.  This will add a heart-healthy dose of fiber to your cookies and will create a chewy texture.
  • Feel free to toss in wheat germ, ground flax seeds, pureed nuts and seeds to cookie recipes for a rich taste and incredible health benefits.
  • Eliminate trans fats by steering clear of margarine and most vegetable shortenings.  Moreover, artificial sweeteners and food dyes are to be used with caution as it is always a safer bet to use natural products and natural sweeteners such as honey, agave nectar, sugar, brown sugar, molasses, raw cacao, fresh fruits and vegetables and dried fruits.
  • Keep your recipe as natural as possible; create red food dye with beets or drizzle dark chocolate over your cookies.  It’s a tasty treat to dip dried fruits such as pears and apricots into dark chocolate for a fiber-rich, antioxidant dessert.
  • Chopped and pureed nuts and seeds are always a hit when sprinkled on top of cookies or tossed into the batter.  Try toasting nuts and seeds to bring out a flavorful punch in each bite.
  • Simplify your holiday prep, by taking a looksy in my Open Sky store to find great tools and gadgets to help create the perfect dishes for your guests.

Happy Holiday Baking!

What is your favorite paired-down healthy holiday recipe?

Musselman’s Apple Sauce Holiday Side Dish and Giveaway Gift Basket

Recently I was contacted by Musselman’s Apple Sauce to create a holiday side dish using their apple sauce.  To say the least, I pretty much inhaled the complimentary 2 jars they sent to me Delicious is an understatement and I had a fabulous time in my new kitchen devising a holiday recipe side dish.


And the best news is that the kind folks over at Musselman’s are offering a Musselman’s Gift Basket to one of my readers. Simply leave a comment on this post with your favorite ways to eat apple sauce and I will be choosing a winner tomorrow!  Good Luck!


Basil Pumpkin Muffins

Ingredients

  • 2 cups light brown sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 cup Musselman’s Apple Sauce
  • 1 1/2 cup Libby’s canned pumpkin
  • 3 cups whole wheat flour or gluten-free flour
  • 2 Tbsp. ground flax seeds
  • 1/4 cup walnuts
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. agave nectar
  • 1/4 cup fresh basil, finely chopped
  • 2 tsp. cinnamon
  • Dash of nutmeg
  • 4 Tbsp. ghee or butter alternative
  • Stevia for topping

Directions

  • Preheat oven to 350°F.
  • Combine ghee, agave nectar and sugar in a large bowl; beat with an electric mixer.
  • Add eggs, vanilla, chopped basil, applesauce, and pumpkin to sugar mixture; mix on low speed.
  • Combine all dry ingredients in a separate bowl.
  • Slowly add to the wet ingredients while continuing to mix on low speed.
  • Spray a muffin pan with non-stick cooking spray.
  • Fill muffin pan with batter 3/4 way full.
  • Sprinkle each muffin with stevia.
  • Bake for 18-20 minutes. Muffins are done when a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.