Wednesday, January 31, 2018

Really Excited About My New Purchase!

I don't have time for a whole long post now, but I just wanted to share my excitement with you guys! Look what I got!!!
It's basically the Chinese equivalent of the Vitamix blender. I've wanted a high quality strong blender for a really long time. Ever since our last cheapo blender broke. But I couldn't justify the expense. If you think Vitamixes are expensive where you live... they cost upward of $1000 locally....
But I really wanted a good blender that wouldn't die, would be powerful enough to make smoothies with frozen fruit without needing to push it down every five seconds, that would be great at pulverizing things, etc....

Tuesday, January 30, 2018

Healthy Vegan Banana Fudge Recipe- Paleo Option, and Easy

I have a second fridge/freezer, living in my backyard, except right now it isn't working. We bought our current fridge/freezer when our old one broke, and after the new one came, we realized that we could fix the old one. And so, it has been sitting in our backyard, exposed to the elements, but has been working. I guess the weather has affected it, or something has, because it stopped working properly. I know I can probably fix it (as the motor is still working, the fan I just assume is blocked) but before I can do that, I have to empty it out.

So all my bananas that I bought super cheaply overripe and froze? I kind of had a surplus that I needed to use up. I haven't found a banana bread recipe that measures frozen bananas in cups, and all my frozen bananas are frozen in such large batches that recipes that call for a banana or two don't work for me. I made banana crumble the other week and it was terrific and used up 20 bananas.
Banana smoothies are also great but I don't currently have a blender (I actually have a new one, currently waiting at my friend's house to pick it up) so can't make them. And as for banana ice cream- it is delicious, but as I mentioned, I'm running a little short on freezer space so that didn't really work.

I thought to make banana fudge using my overripe bananas, and this recipe came out so unbelievable, and it is totally healthy, easy to make, frugal, vegan, etc... While it isn't completely Paleo, it can easily be made Paleo by replacing the peanut butter that I used with a nut or seed butter like almond butter, cashew butter, tahini paste, or sunbutter. Oh, and there are some brands of chocolate chips that are Paleo, like Enjoy Life brand's chocolate chips. If you don't have them, you can replace them with cacao nibs or leave them out entirely.

Healthy Vegan Banana Fudge Recipe- Paleo Option, and Easy

5 Easy Exercises to Keep You Active During Pregnancy

I'm trying to get more fit, being active, and making exercise a part of my life. While I'm not pregnant, I have been four times, and I know many blog readers here either are pregnant or plan on getting pregnant.
Staying active during pregnancy has many benefits to you and to your baby. And there are plenty of fantastic ways of staying fit and active from the moment of conception to birth and beyond. This post from HARTMANN Direct explores five popular pregnant exercises and activities.

Monday, January 29, 2018

Thai Curried Noodles with Chicken and Recipe- Gluten Free, Vegan Option

Recently I went out to eat at a restaurant, and had two dishes based off of Thai green curry paste- noodles with mushrooms and chicken, and corn soup. I recreated my own homemade Thai green curry paste, and with that, I easily recreated them both at home. 
I made a huge amount when I made this recipe- it was enough for 3-4 meals for my family of 6 (it completely filled my large cast iron dutch oven to the very top), so I am am sharing the recipe halved. At the restaurant, this dish was able to be ordered with chicken, salmon, or tofu, so if you want to make this meat free, feel free to replace the chicken in this recipe with either firm tofu or salmon fillet, and it'll be great. Or you can just leave it out.
This dish was so heavenly, but not diet friendly... in large part because it is so addicting that it's hard to just eat one serving. 
To keep this dish more frugal, use homemade coconut milk for this recipe.

Thai Curried Noodles with Chicken and Coconut Milk Recipe- Gluten Free, Vegan Option

How to network effectively at startup events

Though I'm all about frugality, sometimes the best way to improve your financial situation is by doing what you can to bring in more money, in addition to doing whatever possible to cut expenses, even if its not the "ideal job". One of the most important skills in the job search or in building up your own business if you're an entrepreneur is networking. I hope you appreciate these tips from a reader on how to network effectively, applicable everywhere, not just at startup events.

Most good startups have one thing in common – a very social entrepreneur. In today’s world, it is extremely important to showcase your wares and ideas in front of the right people, at the right time. Due to the growing popularity of startups and the need for a place for entrepreneurs to come together, many startup events are being organized in order to give such interested people a platform to socialize. This has led to the need for networking with the correct group of people – from investors to future employees.

Planning on a start-up?

Monday, January 22, 2018

Gifted Some Great Groceries!

A friend of mine is moving far away in a very short while. This friend's family eats largely gluten free, and much our diet is similar to theirs- leaning towards healthy eating, processed food free, but not 100% perfect eating. As they were going through their cupboard, they offered me a whole bunch of their groceries that they wouldn't finish before they left, and I came home with a veritable treasure of groceries and my family and I are really excited.

This is what I got...

If I added up how much this stuff is worth, it's at least a few hundred dollars worth, if not more. Especially since much of it is imported expensive items that I rarely buy because of the price.

Here's what it is.

Friday, January 19, 2018

Chickpea Swiss Chard Veggie Burgers Recipe- Gluten Free and Vegan

Lately I haven't been cooking so many legume dishes despite them being healthy and affordable, because every time I make them, my kids end up protesting, and refusing to eat them, and then they go in the trash, which makes them decidedly not a money saver.
However, I wanted to try again, and decided to combine chickpeas- one of the legumes my kids mind least, and swiss chard (or rather, the wild version of it, beta vulgaris, sea beet) that I have growing all over my yard, and I made these chickpea Swiss chard veggie burgers together with my kids, and everyone agreed to eat it and they all enjoyed it, so I'll call that a win.
It's a pretty easy recipe to make as well, so that's an additional win. Not to mention being gluten free and vegan.

Chickpea Swiss Chard Veggie Burgers Recipe- Gluten Free and Vegan

Sunday, January 14, 2018

Paleo Vegan Banana Crumble Recipe

This recipe and pictures are not winning any awards, but it falls under the category of yummy, easy, healthy, frugal etc... so its a winner in my books. I've had a hard and overwhelming few weeks, dealing with the flu going around from person to person in my family, and finally we seem to all be over it. But I'm quite drained, to put it mildly. 
I was looking for a dessert to make with my five million bananas I bought last time I went to the market, thinking that my family would devour them, or at the very least I'd put them in my freezer to use later, but my second freezer went on the fritz and I needed to start emptying it out. I've made apple crumble many, many times beforehand, but thought to try it with bananas and I love the result.
This recipe is definitely only for banana lovers, but for those that love it, it is banana heaven.
The end result is not only gluten free, vegan, paleo, and cheap (assuming bananas are in season) it is also super easy to make, perfect for those times when you're run down.
Because I used overripe bananas for mine, they were extra sweet on their own, so I used minimal sweetener. If you are using regular bananas, not overripe and very sweet ones, you may want to increase the amount of sweetener you use. 
While I made mine paleo, you can use whatever flour mixture you want and have available. Crumble toppings are very flexible. 

Paleo Vegan Banana Crumble Recipe

Thursday, January 4, 2018

Lemony Rice with Swiss Chard Recipe- Vegan, Easy, and Delicious

I'm sorry I haven't posted in the last week- I've been dealing with sick kids- all four of my kids have taken turns having the flu, and we're already on week 2 of dealing with sick family members. Fortunately, thus far my husband and I have been spared.

With all that, to be honest, I haven't been eating so healthily, eating far too much junk and ready made food. While I did manage to get enough protein each day (for the most part) I was feeling vegetables very lacking in my diet. I did have a fridge full of food, but wasn't inspired. It's been pouring rain and the weather has made my garden flourish, my garden overflowing with all different types of greens, but predominantly my sea beet, beta vulgaris, or wild Swiss chard.

In just a few minutes, I picked all this chard (and there's about 50 times more of that out in my yard at the moment), determined that I'd make myself a nutritious, vegetable heavy, dish with it. I turned to the internet looking for ideas, and got many, but one specific idea was sent to me by someone named Abby- Swiss chard cooked together with rice and lemon.
In my mind, something about cold, wet days goes hand in hand with rice, especially sticky rice, so I made this rice with short grain rice. It can be adapted to be made with regular white rice, but I don't know the exact proportions of water if using regular white rice.

This recipe is easy, yummy, frugal, and vegan. If you don't have Swiss chard or sea beet like I do, you can make this also with beet greens, spinach, or probably kale as well.

Lemony Rice with Swiss Chard Recipe- Vegan, Easy, and Delicious