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Breakfast Food

COCONUT CARROT WAFFLES

June 8, 2019

It’s the one breakfast food that tells you it’s the weekend, THE WAFFLE. Around our house the waffle has become a Sunday morning regular along with the French press coffee. I love a good waffle but I am particular. It has to be Belgium style; thick & crispy on the outside but soft & fluffy on the inside. To do just that we have the All-Clad 4 square waffle maker. It makes the BEST waffles. We got this as a wedding gift back in the day and it is one of our most used small kitchen appliances and this thing is built to last, still going strong 10 years later.

What I love about this Coconut Carrot waffle recipe is the carrot addition. I am always excited when I can sneak veggies in at a meal time especially one that normally is sans-veggies. Besides omelettes most people do not consider eating a vegetable for breakfast. So I welcome this waffle recipe with open arms!! The carrots are hardly noticeable in the waffle. Some might think it’s odd but trust me it adds just a little surprise, in a good way!

This is not an overly sweet waffle. Just a touch of honey and 1 banana sweetens this batter but with extra fruit, drizzle of peanut butter and maple syrup on top you really don’t need anything more.

I used coconut milk (Califia Farms coconut-almond milk blend) because that is what I prefer but feel free to use regular milk if that’s what you have on hand.

Along with the all-purpose flour, I’ve added in some buckwheat four or spelt flour, both turn out perfectly soft waffles. The addition of either of the flours adds a little more fiber and nutrition to the recipe.

For a boost of omega-3 and fiber you could also add walnuts or pecans to the batter which would add a nice crunch to the waffle.

Once your batter is all mixed up, its ready to go! Heat up your waffle iron (my setting was 3) and prep the iron with cooking spray. Pour about 1/3 cup batter into each square.

YUM YUM YUM! Nice golden color, crunchy exterior but super soft inside!

Now, just add that melted butter, fruit, maple syrup, peanut butter or whatever your topping of choice is and dig in!

Don’t forget to tag #platefulnutrition so I can see your waffle making skills!

Dessert Drink Food

5 Favorites

June 2, 2019

Welcome to my first edition of “5 Favorites” where I’ll share my new finds and favorite foods or wellness products. I hope you enjoy a little sneak inside what inspires me and the foods I enjoy.

ENJOY LIFE PROTEIN BITES

Why I like these is there are no funny ingredients. No weird oils or sugar substitutes. Real chocolate and real sugar is used. 100% plant based protein (coming from sunflower seeds & rice protein) these little balls pack about 8 grams of protein per package (4 bites per package).

Although you could use this as a snack I find these are a great dessert alternative too. They are sweet and chocolatey so definitely could satisfy that sweet tooth.

Enjoy Life prides themselves on creating products that are allergy friendly. Although I don’t have any food allergies I still like to eat these because they are delicious plus I like finding clean and wholesome alternatives for my clients that may be in need of soy-free or wheat-free products. And nowadays most kids have to pack peanut-free lunches. Fortunately, Enjoy Life is free of all these allergens plus free of dairy, egg, tree nuts and more. If you are not familiar with Enjoy Life check out their website here. They make chips, cookies, baking chocolate, etc.

I found these little treats at Trader Joes for $1.29 or you can buy the larger packaged size on Amazon, click here.

CULINA YOGURT

The BEST dairy-free plant-based yogurt out there! Creamy, smooth, thick and honestly if I didn’t already know it was diary-free I would think it was regular Greek yogurt. I find its not as tart as Greek yogurt and has a subtle sweetness that balances out the mild coconut flavor. This yogurt is so addicting and cute, it comes in a little reusable terra cotta pot! Just adorable!

This stuff not only tastes delicious but is GOOD for you too. How often does that happen?! It is made with simple and limited ingredients like coconut cream (just coconut + water), real fruit like blueberries or strawberries, sweetened with maple syrup and good-for-you probiotic cultures (more on probiotics here).

Culina is based in Austin, TX. and is a newish company but growing fast. They are currently available at some retailers like Whole Foods or Sprouts. You can go to their website to find a location near you here. And if there isn’t one, shoot them an e-mail so they can work with grocers in your area to get the product on the shelves!

Although I love the terra cotta pot idea, sustainable zero waste grass to clay packaging. After 5-6 pots I run out of ideas on what to do with them. At this price point, its more of a splurge than something I would buy regularly. Maybe over time another less expensive bio-degradable material will be used to bring down the price point to be more comparable with other non-dairy yogurts.

GOURMET TEXAS PASTA

I came across this company at my local farmer’s market in San Antonio and I am so glad I did! They make wholesome plant-based pasta. All their pastas contain zero eggs or dairy unlike regular pastas. They use non-GMO vegetables, herbs and spices to create a flavorful pasta. I tried a sample that was simply prepared; boiled, seasoned with a little EVOO and salt. WOW it was delicious and so flavorful! The texture wasn’t weird either, it was just like pasta!

They currently sell only fusilli, fettuccini and linguini but you can get these in a wide array of flavors, in fact they have 38 varieties and 8 gluten-free pastas. Some of the flavors that sound delicious are the Spicy Red Curry & Coconut Linguini, Hatch Chili Pasta, & Szechuan Orange Spice Linguini to name a few.

The pasta is available for nationwide shipping online at Gourmet Texas Pasta. OR if you live in the San Antonio area head to the Pearl Farmers Market on Saturdays to taste test and buy your favorite pasta flavor.

KOSMIC KOMBUCHA

Another favorite food company based in Austin, TX. Kosmic has crafted the art of kombucha with so many interesting and delicious flavors. I recently tried the Sway Home Brew (at the restaurant Sway in Austin) made of organic kombucha, lemongrass, lime, young coconut water, local honey. It was so refreshing! Even my mom who doesn’t like kombucha said “I could drink that.”

What I like most about Kosmic is their kombucha isn’t too kombucha-y, it’s not overly fermented or vinegary tasting and not overly sweet either. Kosmic’s kombucha is brewed with teas and herbs & with a touch of sweetness from honey it really is the perfect refreshing drink. With so many unique flavors I can’t wait to try others like Local Lemon Love – organic kombucha, hibiscus flower, lemon and local honey or Groovy Green – organic kombucha, kiwi, pineapple, coconut, wheatgrass & agave.

What is Kombucha: in brief, it is a fermented tea. A “scoby” or bacteria culture is grown during the fermentation process providing a probiotic & antioxidant rich beverage with many health benefits. Kosmic Kombucha also explains it here in more details.

Where to buy Kosmic Kombucha, check out their location finder. It seems mostly Texas stores like Whole Foods, Sprouts, etc. are carrying the product.

DOLCEZZA GELATO

We’ve all had gelato, that rich creamy frozen goodness that originated in Italy. I’m no gelato expert but I’ve had the real Italian gelato from Italy and I have to say Dolcezza does a real good job and officially is one of my favorites!

Based out of Washington, D.C. this company focuses on using local farmers to source their seasonal ingredients from the fruit to the cream. I appreciated that Dolcezza keeps the ingredients minimal and uses real straight-forward ingredients to churn their slow made small batch gelato.

I picked up a pint at my local Whole Foods, Peanut Butter Stracciatella. Oh my, this was so creamy and not an overpowering peanut butter flavor. Truly a perfect balance of creamy peanut butter gelato with thin chocolate pieces throughout. Other flavors I’d like to try are Mascarpone & Berries, Roasted Strawberry and Espresso, mmm!

Their website did not provide much detail on where you can get this gelato. Looks like they are only selling through wholesalers right now or if you live in the D.C. area they have several retailers. But I’d keep an eye out at your specialty grocery you might be seeing this one on the shelves soon. And if you do see it, stock up! You’re going to love this gelato!

Head to Dolcezza Gelato to see their flavors & locations.

Food Lifestyle Travel

Girls Trip: Waco, TX

May 20, 2019

Waco, better known for Chip and Joanna Gaines’s Magnolia store at the Silos then it is for anything else. I doubt most people had even heard of Waco before Fixer Upper, the house renovation show on HGTV starring the Gaines. Well, me either! But now I have been to Waco 3 times to see Magnolia at the Silos and always enjoy this amazing place the Gaines have created. I call it the Disneyland for adult women.

So a couple weeks ago my dear friend from Idaho came to Texas. It was a short weekend but on the list of “to-dos” was definitely to make it out to Waco, TX. It’s about a 3 hour drive from San Antonio, each way! But that time truly flew by as we caught up on everything over the car ride.

In my previous visits the Magnolia Table restaurant did not exist yet, so this trip it was a must! When we arrived in Waco we went straight to the restaurant as it was already 11:30 am and we thought we could grab an early lunch before making it over to the Silos. But forget it! There was a 2 1/2 hour wait! What! Fortunately, they send you a text when your table is ready but you have to be back within 7 minutes of that text or they might give your table away! With that long of a wait we figured we would jump back in the car and go see the Magnolia store and head back to Magnolia restaurant about 30 minutes before our table is ready, sounds like a perfect plan!

From Magnolia Table the Silos are only about 5 or so minute drive

At the Silos it was busy but it was a Saturday so that’s to be expected. The Magnolia Bakery had a line out the door per usual, so we skipped this. We first headed to the Magnolia Seed store to see all the plants Joanna has. It is super cute and has a little shed & green house amongst the garden. Inside the Seed store you can find pots, faux plants, gardening tools, seeds, etc.

Right before the Seed Shop we stopped at the flower stand and I got a lovely little arrangement of flowers nicely wrapped up to take home. Guess what, all these flowers were faux! Honestly, had us fooled at first because they look and almost feel so real! The flowers are really great quality and the stems and leaves are pliable.

The Magnolia Store is one of the main things you see when you walk onto the lot. We headed right in with no line. The Spring theme greeted us at the entrance and we made our way through the crowded store. All of the online items are displayed in store and showcased in ways to help you see how it could look in your house.

Didn’t feel like long at the Silos before we got a text that our table was ready, a whole hour early! Well, we knew we only had 7 minutes to get back to the restaurant to get our table so we hustled out of the Silos and literally made it in time with not a minute to spare!

The décor of Magnolia Table was bistro style with cute black and white stripped umbrellas on the outside tables for those eating at the to-go window. Inside the black and white theme continued, with subway and penny tiles on the flooring and walls, wood and metal accents and touches of green plants through out, complete Joanne Gaines style! The kitchen was open air, so you could sit at the bar and watch the chefs cook. We sat at a little table near the back along the window.

The Food at Magnolia Table did not disappoint! Honestly the whole menu sounded lovely! With choices for vegetarians and they even have housemade gluten-free bread!

We shared the parmesan & chive tater-tots with a side of ketchup. Perfectly golden brown and crispy on the outside but warm and tender inside! And a decent serving too!

We both ordered the freshly squeezed Prickly Pear Lemonade mainly because we got to keep the cute glass jar it was served in. The lemonade was also amazing, not too sweet!

My friend got the turkey sandwich on gluten-free bread, which was stacked high with deli sliced turkey, havarti cheese, tomato and lettuce with a pickle wedge and side of potato chips. I opted for the veggie wrap filled with heirloom tomatoes, avocado, watermelon radish, onion, lettuce and to-die-for buttermilk ranch dressing (I need this recipe). A side of assorted berries came with the wrap as well.

The menu had a great selection depending if you wanted lunch or breakfast. Salads, sandwiches, quiches, burgers, biscuits, pancakes, eggs, sausage, etc. We did not get any breakfast foods but the table next to us did and they were all raving about their meal. So next time, I’ll try the breakfast.

Our bill came with two little wax paper wrapped caramels, that just was the cherry on top!

After lunch, we both wanted to head to Joanna’s Little Shop on Bosque street. This is where Joanna opened up her original Magnolia store back in the day and has reopened it to house her old seasonal or slightly damaged items on great discount, 40-60% or more off the sale prices.

TIP: if you bought something at Magnolia at the Silos you get an extra 10% off here

Definitely found a few items to take back to San Antonio.

If you have never been to Waco, TX to see the Magnolia shops and restaurant I would highly recommend you to visit! It really is a fun day and everyone is so nice who work at Magnolia. If you want to avoid the crowds try to visit on a weekday as weekends are guaranteed to be busy and have lines.