Posts filed under ‘Index to Recipes’

How to Make Chocolate EXTRACT in Your Kitchen

Mix together 1/2 cup crushed raw cacao nibs and 1 cup of vodka … Store this embryonic extract in a dark cabinet. Be sure to shake every once in a while.

I am “brewing” chocolate extract. Oh, yes, I am. At the end of September 2017, this extract will be 3 months old and ready for tasting. Some sources say, the extract might need to sit (Soak? Marinate? Steep? What is the correct word?) for 6-12 months in total.

Here is the link to the recipe I used.

Your Turn . . .  Have you ever made any extracts? How did they compare to the ones from the grocery store?  . . . If you’ve had chocolate extract before, how did you use it. This will be my first time tasting/using chocolate extract.

How will I use my chocolate extract?

  • For every day recipes like smoothies and Chocolate Orange Chia Pudding (quite delish as a breakfast)
  • For special occasion recipes like UPSIDE DOWN German Chocolate Cake. If you haven’t tried this recipe yet, you have NOT been good to yourself.
  • And I want to change-up this recipe, Strawberry Chia Seed Jam – No Cook!, by using raspberries for the fruit and adding chocolate extract along with some bittersweet chocolate. I don’t know if using this no cook method will turn the ingredients into jam, but I am willing to risk it.

This is what the extract looks like after 1 month. On September 27th, I will compare/taste all three batches.

I put a note on my calendar to shake this concoction at 1 month and 2 months. At three months I will taste and see if it is “done.” One blogger said it could take up to a year to age just right.

In June I met someone who made extracts as part of her job. She said they ground up the cacao beans. Then they let the beans and alcohol “soak” for a week or two. I will make a batch on September 10th and 17th. Then I will compare all three batches on this day, September 24, 2017.

I will let you know what I learn. And if you make some, tell me what you learn.

NOTE: The crushed cacao bean extract tasted just as nice as the ones that sat longer.

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Strawberry Chia Seed Jam – No Cook!

Since there are so few strawberries in this recipe, next time I will try using a masher.

Strawberries are in season and my taste buds are quite happy! I like strawberries in salad, smoothies, cereal, yogurt, and as a snack. Although I like it, I don’t eat much jam because the sugar content is too high. “Jam recipes mostly comprise equal weights of fruit and sugar.”

But a couple of years ago I found this recipe for Berry Chia Seed Jam.  This recipe has only 1 Tablespoon of sweetener per cup of berries. I finally made it this morning. Since it was a no cook recipe, it made up in minutes.

I put the following ingredients in a blender

  • 2 cups washed, hulled and sliced RIPE strawberries
  • 2 Tablespoons chia seeds
  • 2 Tablespoons filtered water
  • 2 Tablespoons raw honey
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract

I blended it a few times until I slightly mashed the berries. Then I put everything into a pint jar. After 20 minutes or so in the fridge, I will taste to see how the texture is by trying it on a pumpkin pancake.

Next time I make this I will try using Xyla. This is even a more diabetic friendly choice for me.

Your Turn . . . How do you like to use strawberries? . . . Have you made a no cook jam before? If yes, what is your favourite recipe?

Related Posts . . . 

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Low Carb Pumpkin Pancakes

After you’ve tried all the pumpkin recipes, do this gratitude pumpkin next. The link is below.

I really like pancakes. But they are not a healthy choice for me because the typical pancake has lots of carbohydrates.

One day a friend and I cooked up several recipes from her Paleo Cookbooks.

I went on a pancake making spree and came up with THE recipe for me. The below recipe is my adaptation of the recipes we made.


  • 4 eggs
  • ½ cup canned pumpkin
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 Tablespoon pure maple.
  • 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon.
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda.
  • 2 Tablespoons almond meal
  • 1 Tablespoon ground flax
  • ½ cup chopped nuts – walnuts or pecans
  • 2 Tablespoons butter or coconut oil – AND you’ll need more to grease the pan

I add the almond meal and flax so that the meal “stays” with me longer. Otherwise I get hungry too soon. Sometimes I add a little extra depending on how thick I want my pancakes.


  1. Whisk the eggs, canned pumpkin, vanilla and pure maple syrup together.
  2. Sift the pumpkin pie spice, cinnamon, baking soda, almond meal and flax into the wet ingredients. Stir in the nuts.
  3. Melt 2 Tablespoons of butter (or coconut oil) into a large skillet over medium heat. Then pour this melted butter into the batter and stir.
  4. Grease the skillet and spoon the batter into the skillet to make pancakes of your desired size.
  5. When a few bubbles appear, flip the pancakes once to finish cooking.
  6. Serve with butter and cinnamon or sliced bananas.

Yield – – – Approximately 8 small pancakes or 2 servings.

NOTE: When I make extra, I flash freeze these and then wrap each one individually. When I want one, I take it out at night and put it in the fridge and then reheat it in the microwave or oven in the morning.

By the way – these pancakes also keep just fine in the fridge and they taste better the second day.

Your Turn . . . Do you have a favorite low carb pancake? If yes, please share the recipe.

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Apple Nachos

I am a hypocrite. I did NOT chop my pecans at all. I just threw them on top of everything right out of the bag.

Sometimes I want to adapt a recipe so that my gluten intolerant daughter can eat what the rest of us are eating. Here is our version of APPLE Nachos.


  • 3 red apples (I used Gala)
  • 1 green apple (I used Granny Smith)

You can use any combination of apples or use all one type. I used red AND green for the colour. And I only used one Granny Smith because I am not a fan of tart.

  • 1/4 cup caramel topping (I used Smuckers Salted Caramel)
  • 1 cup dark chocolate chips
  • 1 teaspoon of coconut oil
  • 1/2 cup pecans


  • Wash, core and slice the apples. Arrange them on a platter. (I used two plates.)
  • Chop the pecans into coarse pieces. Set aside.
  • Pour chocolate chips and coconut oil in a mug. Put it in the microwave until melted (1-2 minutes). Spoon the mixture over the apples. Do so in lines.
  • Heat up the caramel sauce in the microwave (1-2 minutes). Pour in dribbles on top of the chocolate dribbles. NOTE: If you heat and pour from the glass jar it comes in, be very CAREFUL, the jar is HOT.
  • Sprinkle the pecans on top of the apples with the bi-coloured dribbles.
  • EAT. You might need a wet wipe for your face and fingers. Just saying.

Your Turn . . . What was the last apple dish you had? . . . Have you had dessert nachos before? 

Related post . . . Recipe Index for Fruitful Words


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Grab Spoons; It’s National Chocolate Pudding Day

It’s the start of a good week when National Chocolate Pudding Day makes its entrance, June 26. Go here for more information about chocolate pudding day. Since chocolate is something my palette adores, I decided to celebrate this day by making pudding. I started the celebration by making this simple vegan chocolate chia pudding from yummy mummy kitchen. It serves 2.

I shook the below four ingredients into a mason jar and let them sit overnight in the fridge. My recipe is slightly different.

  • 1 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk
  • 6 Tbsp chia seeds – It needs this many for the pudding to set properly
  • 2 Tbsp cocao nibs
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp unsweetened Dutch Processed cocoa powder
  • 2 tsp Xyla – taste and see if this is sweet enough for you

Next, I made my single serving Orange Chocolate Chia Seed Pudding

Finally I decided to try a pudding I’ve heard of but never had the taste bud guts to try – a pudding with avocado as the base. 

This three ingredient pudding from Christina Najjar caught my eye. Blenderize the below ingredients.

  • 1 large ripe avocado
  • 1 tbsp cocoa powder or raw cacao
  • 2 Tbsp maple syrup

I didn’t have maple syrup so I didn’t make the above recipe. Instead I made the one below. Raw honey came to the rescue. A friend gave me some last week.

Pecans are not in the recipe. I had some on the counter and added them instead of coconut or almonds

You need to fuss only a bit more, to make this avocado chocolate pudding  from the fitchen. Below are the ingredients.

  • 1 ripe avocado
  • 2 Tbsp raw honey
  • 3 Tbsp cocoa powder
  • 6 Tbsp. coconut milk [from carton, unsweetened]
  • pinch of sea salt
  • crushed almonds [optional]
  • coconut flakes [optional]
  • 2 Tbsp cocao nibs   – I added these – yum,

My impressions.

  • The colour and consistency are absolutely yummy – perfect in fact.
  • However I didn’t love the taste. I could taste the avocado which is normally fine because I LIKE avocado. But in this case I wanted to taste only chocolate.
  • I think the problem lies with how much avocado is used. Since I have never made a recipe like this before, I need a more precise measurement than “1 ripe avocado.” I want something that gives measurements like “1 cup avocado.”
  • Finally, the mixture did not want to blend well in my blender (not at all). Next time I will use an immersion blender.
  • And there will be a next time for me. The next time avocados are on sale, I will buy a six-pack and see about perfecting  a more precise recipe for my taste buds.

Sometime I want to try this Cashew Chia Cacao Nib Pudding..

Your Turn . . .  How did you celebrate this day?  . . . Use #NationalChocolatePuddingDay on social media, if you have something to say.

Related Posts . . . All Things Chocolate on Fruitful Words . . . 



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Chocolate Orange Chia Pudding

This single serving of pudding is great for breakfast, snack or dessert. When I eat it for breakfast, I try to have another protein source (like a hard-boiled egg). I wonder what it would taste like, if I added some protein powder to the pudding?


  • 1/2 cup + 2 Tbsp almond milk, unsweetened
  • 1/2 tsp orange extract
  • 2 Tbsp cocao nibs – optional
  • 2 Tbsp cocoa powder, unsweetened
  • 3 Tbsp chia seeds
  • 2 tsp Truvia or Xyla (I prefer Xyla.)
  • 1/2 tsp fresh orange zest – be careful as you can put too much in


  1. Mix the ingredients in a bowl. Set aside.
  2. Mix again about 15 minutes later
  3. After about 30 minutes, the seeds will be plump and the mixture will be pudding-consistency. This can be made the night before.
  4. Eat.

I made this today. And I am posting it for National Chocolate Pudding Day.  #NationalChocolatePuddingDay – June 26

Your Turn . . . What are you doing for National Chocolate Pudding Day? 

I modified this recipe. The original Chia Pudding recipe is here.

Related Post . . . Recipe Index from Fruitful Words.

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Mexican Cornbread

IMG_8931I was asked to bring Mexican Cornbread to a party. The below recipe is the one I made.

This recipe is easy. It is moist. And the kiddos even liked it because the chile taste is not overpowering.


  • 1-8.5 oz. package Jiffy Corn Muffin Mix
  • 1 egg
  • 1/3 cup sour cream (You can also use buttermilk or regular milk.)
  •  1-4 oz. can diced green chile peppers
  •  1/2 cup sharp cheese, shredded
  • Splash of milk – use this if batter is too stiff. I like the batter to pour like a cake batter.


  1. Heat oven to 400°F.
  2. Grease an 8”x8” pan. (You could opt to make 6-8 muffins instead.)
  3. Whisk together muffin mix, egg, sour cream, and green chiles. Fold in cheese. Batter will be slightly lumpy.
  4. Pour into pan.
  5. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until golden brown.


  1. To double the recipe, double the above ingredients and put into a 9”x12” greased pan. Mine took 25 minutes to cook.
  2.  I tweaked this recipe by Paula Deen.

Related Post . . . Recipe Index

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Red Stuff Aka Cranberry Jello Dessert

I went to a potluck Christmas party and my food to bring was dessert. One gal who was

You can serve it from the bowl or layer it parfait style. Both are pretty.

You can serve it from the bowl or layer it parfait style. Both are pretty.

going has a lot of food allergies so I made a dessert especially for her. It is pretty, easy to make, and who doesn’t like jello? And if I make this for my daughter, I skip the Cool Whip to make it dairy-free.


  • 1 large package. raspberry Jello (sugar free is a tasty alternative)
  • 2 cups boiling water
  • 1 can whole cranberry sauce
  • 1 (8 oz.) can crushed pineapple
  • 1 (8 oz) can mandarin oranges
  • 1 c. chopped pecans or walnuts – toasted are yummiest
  • Cool Whip or whipped cream


  1. Pour boiling water over Jello in a large clear bowl. Stir until dissolved.
  2. Add the cranberry sauce so that it melts into the hot liquid.
  3. Drain juice from oranges and pineapple into a measuring cup, add enough water to the juice to make 1 1/2 cups. Add juice to Jello.
  4. Refrigerate until slightly thickened. Fold in pineapple, oranges, and nuts.
  5. Refrigerate until set.
  6. As you scoop out portions, serve with a dollop of Cool Whip or whipped cream
  7. Or scoop out portions into clear dessert glasses alternating the jello mixture with the Cool Whip.

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11 Recipes & 1 Food Technique to Master

I can steam a decent bowl of rice pilaf, chop nuts & veggies correctly, and make a killer burrito.

On my Fall Bucket List I wanted to “Make a list of and learn to do 12 new recipes/techniques.” I have finally come up with this list with the help of my foodie friend, Gillian.

Three of these food are followed by ef in parenthesis. This means I want to make this dish “Elizabeth Friendly.” Because of bodily reactions, my daughter chooses to not eat dairy, eggs, or gluten. I am slowly trying to incorporate more ef foods into my cooking style. This list is my first serious nod to that attempt. Although . . .

The filling in both pies were tasty, but I still haven’t discovered a great ef crust.

Below are the 11 recipes and 1 technique I will master in 2012. As I master them, I will add the link to the blog post detailing my victory.

  1. Baked Alaska – I have had this one time in my life. Do you remember eating this, Elizabeth? My daughter and I were attending a Girl Guide camp when we lived in England. I got to go because I was a helper in the kitchen and with the girls. One of the desserts was a Baked Alaska. It made a marvelous presentation and was quite tasty.
  2. Beef Wellington – I’ve never had this, but it looks so sophisticated. Have you had this? Was it as yummy as it looks?

    I can turn raw turkey into a roasted beauty and transform veggies and beef into a delectable Dutch oven meal. But I know NOTHING about Beef Wellington.

  3. Bread (ef) – The gluten-free (dairy-free and egg-free) breads I’ve eaten have been dry and heavy! I’d like to make a loaf of bread bend to my wishes and turn out moist, tender, and slice-able.
  4. Cake Roll – I have to admit I am afraid of rolling a sheet cake in a towel in order to make this cake roll. Time to stop being afraid. I now have the proper pan and new clean, white, kitchen towels.
  5. Eggs Benedict – Surely this is one of the most recognized decadent breakfast dishes. I don’t mind mastering “decadent.”
  6. Fish – I am nor much of a fish eater. Getting more fish into my diet is a must. So I am looking for a couple of non-fishy, EASY, cost-effective recipes to put into my weekly food plan. Ideas?
  7. Gravy (ef) – Too many times my gravy turns out lumpy. When we lived in England, I used to call my neighbor, Jo, and ask her to pop over to make the gravy. Jo is too far to ask her to help me. And its been too long since I’ve had a good gravy dinner.
  8. Pavlova With No Fail Meringue Gillian has this recipe. She said she’d help

    This beautiful Pavlova is said to be New Zealand’s national dessert since an NZ chef created it in the 1920’s. Although Australia disputes this and says they are the creator.  After I master THIS, I will be the creator! 🙂

    me make this, hopefully in time for Easter.

  9. Piecaken (mini) – Silly Doodah made this for her husband’s birthday. This novel dessert is one I want to make. BUT. I am lazy. I do not own a spring-form pan. So I looked for an easier way to make this. Lucky for me (and my testers) I found a cupcake version. Want to sign on a mini piceaken taste-tester? Or does this idea of a pie-in-a-cake revolt you?
  10. Pie crust (ef) – Time to find a gluten-free, dairy-free pie crust recipe that is worthy of the filling.
  11. Portion Out A Whole Chicken – Many times whole chickens are on sale at a great price. I’d like to learn how to properly slice it into its parts (breasts, thighs, etc). Truth be told, I don’t know what the etc will be.
  12. Souffle (hot) – Will I master a savory or sweet souffle? At this moment I am thinking it will be a savory concoction. Have a recipe to share?

Your Turn . . .

  • What would you add to this list?
  • What is something you’ve made or a technique you’re mastered in the cooking world recently?

Related Posts . . .

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Recipe Index

Basic Friendship Starter Bread

Chocolate Chip Banana Bread
Making Friendship Starter 
Day 6 Friendship Starter Directions
Day 10 Friendship Starter Directions
Mexican Cornbread
Pumpkin Muffins (dairy-free, gluten-free, egg-free)

Arnez Scrambled Eggs
Chocolate Orange Chia Pudding
Banana Stuffed French Toast
Figs & Greens Breakfast Salad
French Toast Supreme Casserole for 2  
Low Carb Pumpkin Pancakes
Chocolate Extract
Strawberry Chia Seed Jam – No Cook!
Apple Nachos
Cake in a Mug (bottom half of post)
California Orange Cookie with Dark Chocolate Chips
Caramel Apple Salad (more dessert than salad)
Cherry Fudge Brownies
Chocolate Chip Shortbread Cookies
Chocolate Pie
Cinnamon Cream Cheese Pocket Pies
Coffee Angel Food Cake
Cream Cheese Mints
Home-Made Cool Whip
Impossible Pumpkin Pie (dairy-free, gluten-free, egg-free) Pie bakes its own crust.
Peach Cobbler (dairy-free, gluten-free, egg-free)
Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies
Pie Crust & Pumpkin Pie Filling (dairy-free, gluten-free, egg-free) 
Pumpkin Fudge
Rolo Pretzel Turtles 
S’mores Pie
5 Steps to the Tastiest & Easiest Iced Coffee Drink
Main Dish
Pasta Primavera
Sweet and Sour Pork
Sweet Potato Burritos
Sweet Potato Shepherd’s Pie (2nd recipe on this post)
Calico Surprise Potato Salad
Green Stuff
Orange Stuff  
Chicken Tortilla Soup
Fall Harvest Soup
Sweet Potato Lentil Stew in Crock Pot
Tortellini Sausage Soup from Kate at Our Best Bites
4 Steps to a Great Microwave Potato
Mashed Sweet Potatoes (1st recipe on this post)
Spiced Beans in Coconut Milk

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60 Acts of Kindness, Intentional & Random to do my 60th year

The Finish Date.

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