Life with Liam…

Monthly Archives: September 2012

This past week I began my hunt for a truly healthy granola recipe. I wanted to use coconut oil, and little to no sugar. I found some recipes online that looked fantastic, but I didn’t have the ingredients on hand for them…not wanting to run out to the store, I came up with my own recipe using what we had. 

Double Coconut Cherry Granola:

In a large bowl combine: 3 cups rolled oats,  1 cup flaked coconut (I used unsweetened), 2 cups coarsely chopped pecans. 

In a saucepan melt over medium heat: 1/2 cup virgin coconut oil, 1/3-1/2 cup honey, 1 tablespoon vanilla, and 1/4 cup brown sugar. The brown sugar is optional – I made 2 batches, one with the brown sugar and one without…the sugar makes the granola crunchy in a way the honey cannot…plus. I like things sweet, so I preferred the sugar version. Bring to a boil. 

Pour liquid ingredients over oat mixture, combine. Spread on rimmed cookie sheet and bake at 325 for 40-50 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes. When granola is beginning to cool, break into chunks with a wooden spoon, and add 1-2 cups dried cherries. Store in an air-tight container at room temperature.

We LOVE this granola sprinkled over greek yogurt and fruit! Yum!!


Labor Day Family Picture!

I’m so inspired to start writing on here now…I’ve been reading some friend’s blogs lately, and it makes me want to write on my own! Even if no one reads this, I’ll enjoy having some record of these early days of motherhood and staying at home! 

I’ve been trying to shop and eat local produce this past summer…it’s really not that hard, thanks to a wonderful farmer’s market nearby! My mom and I usually go to the market on Saturday mornings – she likes to leave by 7:30 in the morning to beat the rush! Since my baby rarely lets me sleep past 6:30 these days, it’s not a problem to get going early. This market has been around for years, and I’ve been going to it my whole life! Some of the vendor’s there I remember from when I was a kid. It is possible they remember me too, as one of the (many) children in that huge, crazy family! 

We’ve been trying to eat healthy lately too, and sticking to a grocery budget! It’s amazing how much you can spend on food if you don’t plan ahead. And if you’re looking for healthy choices while eating out/on the go, it’s usually even more expensive! So I’ve been trying to plan our meals ahead, which is the only way we can eat a healthy, affordable diet. I try to make it tasty too 🙂

This week:

Monday: Stuffed Peppers, sauteed zucchini and onions and zucchini muffins. I bought locally grown colored peppers at the market for $.50 each on Saturday, and I have the filling for stuffed peppers in the freezer from when I made them a few weeks ago. The market was overflowing with beautiful zucchini this past week, so we’ll be eating something containing zucchini at pretty much every meal this week! I couldn’t resist – zucchini was 3/$1.00…I bought 12. They are relatively small, because the larger ones tend to be tough and seedy…

Tuesday: Eggplant Parmesan with spaghetti squash on the side. Eggplant were $.75 each – I bought 2, which will make a 9×13 pan of Eggplant Parm. Yum!

Wednesday: dinner at friend’s house…I will take something made with zucchini – maybe these healthy brownies that are my new favorite thing ever!

Thursday: leftovers! There should be plenty of Eggplant Parm to finish up, and maybe some stuffed peppers as well. 

Friday: we often eat at my parents or with my in-laws on Friday night…I have the ingredients for homemade pizza on hand, in case we decide to stay home. I’d like to try this recipe for pizza made with a zucchini-based crust that I’ve had my eye on for a while…we’ll see!

Saturday: we have plans to be at Rock the Lakes in Buffalo all afternoon and evening so we’ll either grab something there, or I’ll pack sandwiches. Nothing super healthy about either option, but sometimes you just do what works 🙂

Sunday: Tacos, guacamole and chips. Tacos are my stand-by dinner! They’re so fast, easy, and you can make them pretty healthy! I usually forgo the tortilla and make myself a taco salad… I have cooked ground turkey in the freezer, so I’ll just thaw that and season it up with a can of black beans. 

So there’s my menu for the week! This really isn’t a recipe blog, so I’m not posting the recipes I use, but there are links to some. In general I find my recipes on Pinterest, or from a few favorite food/recipe blogs! My favorite blog lately is Sweet Basil n Spice – easy, yummy, healthy recipes! Check out the many baked oatmeal recipes, they are all fantastic!

What are YOU eating this week? Do you have any favorite healthy, cheap recipes?