Sugar Free Gluten Free Low fat YUMMY Cheese Cake

sugar_free_gluten_free_Cheese_cake_with_mixed_berries_compoteIMG_20160619_01_0361©_2016_Linda_Enger_Photographyweb_image

My husband and I have been working on a cheesecake that is gluten and sugar free. This is the latest iteration. I must say the photo is not best beauty image…. but it was the last piece and I really wanted to photographic it quickly cause I was jonesing for another piece! SO much for my career as a food photographer to patiently wait for a stylist 🙂

 

Results:

Structure AWESOME ( well still working on the crust)

Taste  DELICIOUS

Recipe still  going  through refining.  I am not a cheese cake junkie but  this is really changing my thoughts. I have gotten down to 1/2 goat dairy product  1/2 cow dairy…. and working to change that too. For now it is totally gluten and sugar free !!!  And no Splenda like they use at cheese cake factory.

I am due for another try on this and being that my husband and father in law love cheesecake…. to be continued. Did I say guilt free 🙂 I think you would have to be a serious sugarholic to think it was not sweet enough!

 

 

Cranberry Salsa- Versions 1 and 2 and ideas for serving

Linda's_Cranberry_Salsa_0929©_2015_Copyright_Linda_Enger_Photography

Linda’s tart, flavorful, spicy and a tad sweetened cranberry salsa

l-12oz bag of fresh whole cranberries

1/8 cup Raw honey

5 drops Stevia

1 tsp Xylitol

3- drops Wild Orange Doterra Essential Oil

1-Serrano hot Pepper

( Or other pepper of your choice, but if you leave this out it is more like the original Chutney)

DIRECTIONS

1. Combine orange, apples, and cranberries into a food processor.

Pulse until ingredients are finely chopped.

2. Pour ingredients into large bowl. Add sweeteners

3. Add 3 drops Wild Orange essential oil. Stir to combine.

4. Put salsa into airtight container and let it rest in the fridge for 1-4 hours.

Note:My orange and pepper were organic and home grown .

I made this recipe for Thanksgiving 2015= ,RAVE reviews ! This was in place of traditional Cranberry sauce ( canned or home made) served with Turkey and the Vegetarians loved it too !

FYI- I started with the Cranberry Chutney Recipe from Doterra essential oils , and as always played with my food, less sugar , less sweet, more healthy!

Version #2 – spicier

Skip the orange but add 5 drops Doterra Wild Orange oil not 3

Add 2 or more hot peppers not one

WONDERFUL DESERT IDEAS:

Serve as parfait layered with Easy Coconut Maple  Whipped Cream or NO sugar Coconut Ice Cream…( will post my recipes ) and home made granola ( I will post my recipe for that as well ).

You may already know about me:

I like to play with my food . I do not always follow directions so well to the T. I do not believe that our taste buds or bodies were meant to be bombarded by sugar or heavy sweets of any kind. Therefore I am always working on making recipes that suit that way of life. Especially when someone has Diabetes , or any inflammatory health issues and wants natural healthy eating!

Recipe by : DirttoDelicious.net  Linda Enger December 3, 2015

What’s in my kitchen ?

What_is_it_in_my_kitchen?0831-2I posted this photo on my dirttodelicious instagram account the other day, and also my personal Facebook account. Interesting to see what people thought it was. No right answers so far. How long should I keep them guessing ?

As is so much in life… timing is everything. 🙂

fyi for my pixel peeping friends… I actually liked this iphone version of the shot better than my shot with macro lens and studio lights…life can be ironic in so many ways.

 

Olives want attention too!

Olives_in_the_making6413
Garlic olives, home grown, home made in the making

Olive trees. For those that are allergic,  they can be brutal. Messy, pesticide sprayed high maintenance trees that go along with ornamental oranges in my mind of silly fruit baring trees planted in the southwest!  BUT, if you do not spray them , and fertilize them and bother to go out of your way to pick and pickle them… delicious home grown , home made garlic olives = MAJOR yum for months. So as the temperature is starting to feel human  here, and with  LOTS of urban farming things to do outside ( beside the rest of life to dos/ work  and … did I say hiking  anyone ?)  picking and pickling olives is on my timely to do list ! Snooze you loose.

 

My first batch of Kombucha Scoby

Kind of looks like beer here, but my scoby is pretty impressive I think!
Now that I know how much sugar and black tea goes into it, I am not really sure I am buying in totally with all the health aspect of Kombucha ye…but it really is a fun science experiment. AND being that I am notoriously not good at following directions…. I let it sit for 6 weeks instead of 1-4 weeks, and got a 3/4 plus” scoby not a 1/4″ one. Now I have my first official batch of Kombucha brewing with that scoby and looking forward to making it into Ginger Kombucha serving it nice and cold wine glasses. A shout out thank you to thekitchn.com for the great recipes!

Cucumber triplets

consistent with my mini veggies I harvested my first 3 cucumbers yesterday ( yep finally ) and today it appears the same predator the devoured my one of my eggplant leaves now has taken down several cucumber plants
Consistent with my skill for growing very small veggies , Friday I harvested my first 3 cucumbers. Yeah, go ahead, say it … “really” ? Yep It is almost mid August . Today it appears the same predator that devoured the leaves off one of my eggplants the other day has now done its business to several of my cucumber plants. Sigh. SO , I guess I am grateful to have harvested these yummy small cucumbers!

Quail recipe revisited

While watering the veggies this morning I realized my quail recipe I considered a few weeks ago was best that it had not been executed. It appears that the fat yummy quail I had been considering for dinner… must have been pregnant because as I walked up to one of the raised beds a family of baby quail went running out of cover of the cinder blocks that were protecting them( silly kids)  , with their mom yelling at them  ( and me ) from nearby. No photos . Wondering where the nest had been .

Schug heaven recipe

I love home grown and organic Cilantro. I could eat a plate of it as my salad and be happy. And cilantro is SOOOO good for you!  Usha Lad and Dr Vasant Lad in their book Ayurvedic Cooking for Self  Healing say that “Cilantro balances all doshas ( more on that in another post) and is especially good for kindling gastric fire, for nausea, fever, cough and quenching thirst.” I  do not remember  where I read  that it was a great detoxifier!  ( will get back to you on reference for that ) . In Modern Essentials , A Contemporary Guide to the Therapeutic Use of Essential Oils  , it says that the aroma of Cilantro leaves  has been used historically for anxiety and insomnia. No wonder I love the smell so much.

But my hubby says he has some genetic propensity where cilantro tastes like soap! Really. He actually researched it and found out he was not alone and there is scientific documentation ! Well there is always a work around. Instead of watching him picking out the cilantro from  salads and dishes I like to serve I have found that Schug , an Israeli sauce loaded with  garlic and  chilies I grow for him is perfect way of him not tasting soap! So as my wonderful winter herb starts going to seed in the heat  and in general dying out I made what is likely my last batch of schug for this season.

Maybe I will get back to  this recipe someday and give you more specifics but honestly each time I make this recipe  it is a little different.  I am totally fine with that ! If you are one of those people who meticulously colored  in the lines as a child and cringe at not following a recipe exactly… do not bother to read farther.

FYI I am always much happier when I am able to make this recipe from my own harvest, but  of course you could use purchased ingredients.

So today here it is , with (variations ) included for your dining pleasure.

This recipe makes approximately 8- 10 ounces of Shug, yeah it really amazes and saddens me when I see sauces that take so much to become so little , especially if they are left uneaten on someone’s plate ;( GRRRR you know who you are.  Please take less and see if you like it 😉  Also note I have written the basic ingredients in BOLD because if you are like me you will likely skim this entire article and recipe , looked at the photos. You likely would really do better with having the bold print jump out at you cause that is all you really need to make this dish sing on your own. And to you I say …. welcome to my world! My husband refers to me as a Harlem Globe Trotter in the kitchen. You figure it out. You may already be on my team.

Schug4789©_2015_Copyright_Linda_Enger_Photography
I find this sauce a magical addition to any meal and am known to including it with any meal I have it in the fridge.

RECIPE 

1) Approximately – 2 VERY large handfuls of home grown  organic Cilantro already washed and big tougher  stems removed . Ideally wrapped in paper towels and stored in ziplock bag for 24 hours ( note could use day of but I like to start  with the greens dry.)

2) Approximately  3 or 4  home grown Organic  Serrano chili peppers both red and green (  How hot do you like it ? Use accordingly.  Of course  you could use other types of chilies but these are what I have growing right now.)  FYI the non organic chilis you see in the store are likely grown in Mexico and  are on the Dirty Dozen list for pesticides. Choose your poison. Just saying .  Anyway, cut off the stems and throw in the entire chili -seeds and all, if you like it hotter… oh, and my chilis are kind of small too, not like with pesticide ridden ones  😉

3) Approximately  5 cloves of  peeled garlic  ( sad to say my anticipated May harvest of organic garlic  is not looking too good this year thanks to the numerous predators in my gardens that have truly enjoyed digging these up this year.

3) Thanks to friendly  neighbor- 1 BIG Meyer Lemon- juiced, seeds removed and flesh reserved  ( or couple drops of Doterra  lemon oil is great too)

4) BIG sprinkling of Celtic Salt or  Himalayan pink  salt

5) Approximately  1/2 cup  Organic  Extra Virgin cold pressed Olive oil . I have been doing really well lately with Kirkland -Costco brand.

Directions are SUPER easy with Food Processor

Put garlic , peppers add cilantro in phases to give processor time to take all your hard work in harvesting and cleaning etc to pulverize.

Add lemon, salt, olive oil. Keep pulverizing till you have cilantro nirvana.

Just a few serving suggestions I love to serve this  with hard boiled eggs  ( my breakfast of champions )  or cod or rice ( yes I still eat this- more on that another time )  of course it is great  with hummus or mixed into hummus. I also  mix it into goat cheese  or cream cheese if I am feeling cow dairy friendly for a bright happy  green  out of the box spread for crackers… and well I am thinking of trying it as a topping on my  home made Vanilla coconut ice cream  ( no I am not pregnant but really do like to play with my food) .

ENJOY  !

 

A ripe peach in the hand is worth more than 2 in the tree (specifically the ones sampled by birds and squirrels!)

I picked  hmm maybe  60 yummy little organic peaches… and then there were those that already had a bite or a peck or half eaten… darn,  almost a 5 gallons bucket worth. This is what I have learned. Pick unripe  ripen them well inside … it really was upsetting to attempt to have them ripen on the  tree and hope we have a chance to enjoy any of them.

After 4 years I am happy to say I  have  finally gotten a harvest. Each year I have gotten a little  tougher love going with the thinning of the small fruit .

SO this is what I have learned…. Do not put in fridge and THEN try to ripen !

Pick them unripe and give them a nap as described in this great video that really helped set me straight.  It worked 🙂

http://tallcloverfarm.com/74/the-best-way-to-ripen-peaches

peaches harvested by the branch!! Prior to giving them a nap inside to ripen.
peaches harvested by the branch,prior to tucking them in for  a nap inside to ripen.

My season of peas on earth is ending, for now

During Passover I choose not to harvest any peas  ( not eating them that week) and no one I offered them to was able to come harvest that week … so I had to be patient…. and loved the bounty once Passover was over.

Harvest of snap peas day after passover ended
Harvest of snap peas day after passover ended

 

and so I ripped out my last snap pea, and snow pea plant on Sunday after harvesting the stragglers due to the 100 degree heat we already have  had . I’ve also been collecting dried pods for planting  in the fall. What a wonderful feeling knowing I am doing my part to help  create peas on earth.

Do you think this blog needs how to imfo re image making?

As this blog progresses I am seeing how it evolves organically ( pun intended). Wondering what my subscribers are really looking for here.

Please comment.