Monday, September 29, 2014

Low(er) carb banana bread

Trader Joes just opened up in our area, and they sell almond and cashew meal for five dollars a bag, which is HALF the price of a regular supermarket (come to think of it, you're not going to find cashew meal in Publix at all...) They also sold bananas for 19c each, so enter banana bread! The bag recommends swapping out half the flour in a baked recipe for ground nuts, so I combined almond, flax, and unsweetened coconut to significantly raise the fiber and protein content of the recipe, and cut the sugar way down... I used regular sugar, but cut it in half, and the result is delicious, and relatively low carb, at least according to Spark People's recipe analyser. And it still tastes plenty sweet to me because of the raisins and chocolate...

NOTE - almost all coconut sold in the US is highly sugared... I buy unsweetened coconut at Whole Foods.

Low(er) carb banana bread.

2 small ripe bananas
4 large eggs
1 stick baking margarine or butter (you could probably leave this out - bananas, flax and coconut all contain fat)
1/2 cup ground flax
1/2 cup almond meal
1/2 cup UNSWEETENED dessicated coconut
3/4 cup white sugar
1/2 cup raisins (or you could sub craisins)
1/2 cup chocolate chips
2 tsp baking powder
1-1/2 cups flour
Approx 3/4 cup milk (you may not need so much)
Cinnamon or Pumpkin Pie spice to taste

Melt margarine/butter in the microwave. Add bananas and mash them in the bowl. Add the eggs and the flax, almond and coconut and mix well. Add all other ingredients except the milk. Lastly, add milk to make it look like cake batter.

Bake at 375 Degrees for 30 minutes or until a skewer comes out clean.

This recipe made 6 'mini foil loaf pans', to be divided into quarters for eating. It would probably make 24 muffins, in which case each muffin would contain


Nutrition Facts

User Entered Recipe
  6 Servings (ie. one mini loaf)

Amount Per Serving
  Calories 592.6
  Total Fat 20.8 g
      Saturated Fat 7.5 g
      Polyunsaturated Fat 7.2 g
      Monounsaturated Fat 4.6 g
  Cholesterol 130.5 mg
  Sodium 213.1 mg
  Potassium 368.9 mg
  Total Carbohydrate 67.4 g
      Dietary Fiber 4.4 g
      Sugars 35.7 g
  Protein 12.0 g

Nutrition Facts

User Entered Recipe
  24 Servings (if you make muffins)

Amount Per Serving
  Calories 148.2
  Total Fat 5.2 g
      Saturated Fat 1.9 g
      Polyunsaturated Fat 1.8 g
      Monounsaturated Fat 1.2 g
  Cholesterol 32.6 mg
  Sodium 53.3 mg
  Potassium 92.2 mg
  Total Carbohydrate 16.8 g
      Dietary Fiber 1.1 g
      Sugars 8.9 g
  Protein 3.0 g

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Something entirely different - colouring Mandalas

When I was a kid I LOVED colouring... the more intricate the design, the better I liked it. My father brought us home a whole book of Celtic knotwork, and I hoarded those patterns for years, colouring them as slowly as I could to make the book last. Every now and then I get the urge to revisit my childhood and do some colouring (tiny mandalas or other small pieces of hand-coloured clip art make GREAT card decorations.) but I haven't done any for a long time. When I got some birthday money this year, I put a book of Dover mandalas into the Amazon basket, and it arrived at the perfect time - not two days after it arrived, I put my back out and any movement was excruciating. Sitting at my desk colouring was a good way to keep from going insane with boredom. These are full-sized mandalas, so it took me a couple of days to colour each one. The first one is coloured with assorted markers, and the second has some gel pen added for glitter. My gel pens are very elderly and alas most of them had dried up, so that's given me the perfect excuse to order a replacement set, and yet another colouring book... I've also bought a couple more copics - the smooth-flowing brush tip is just brilliant at colouring in the larger background segments.

Quick and easy cards

I know it's a VERY long time since I've used this blog... but I've had the misfortune to become chronically ill, and crafting has dropped way down my priority list. When I do craft I'm going with very simple designs that use premade decorations wherever possible to minimise the amount of moving around I have to do. I found these gorgeous flowers in Ross, and they inspired me to make some cards using a vase stamp and a leaf punch.

The first is a get well card for an elderly church member who broke his hip. Paul's eyesight is deteriorating, so I went for bold bright colours to make it easy for him to see the card and to cheer up his hospital room.

I also had the sad occasion to make a sympathy card for my brother-in-law's wife... I used the same tools, but added a filigree cross stamp for a background and used a sympathy prayer. I made it in two colours because I wasn't sure which background would work better, and I put a pre-printed sympathy poem on the inside...

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Cat and Dog mini-albums

It's been a long time between posts, but I haven't had much to share this year... there are a few cards floating around for me to post once I find the scans. But this last few weeks I've been working on a special project - mini albums. These first two are half done and I've got a few more in the works, including a very special one for a gift... so without further ado, here are the pics. Details below.

A few details... the mini albums are 6x7, allowing enough room for binding and using a 6x6 paper pad for decoration. Holes were punched with the cropodile set to just a fraction under 1/2". It's strong enough to easily punch five sheets of cardstock at the same time, minimising the chance of misalignment.
Most of the paper is from the Basic Grey 'Max and Whiskers' 6x6 paper pad, with co-ordinating bits and pieces from my own collection. Both albums were cut from the same stack of 12x12 cardstock, and the offcut was retained for matting. As you can see, the albums are half-done and I'll post the remainder as I finish.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

More cards for sale

Last week I sold all of the gift boxes and 10 general greeting cards, and I made $50 for the church because the guy who bought all the envelopes was so generous he gave me $40 and wouldn't take change... and I have four people who told me that they will definitely be buying some today. So I sat down and made some more (after I went out and spent $10 buying some more glue! The ATG tape runner made 50 cards and expired.) I also bought a new Christian sentiment stamp on sale for four bucks. I think I'll get a lot of use out of it, especially if I keep on selling cards at the church. Right now I'm thinking that I'll repeat the card sales for each holiday that comes up and see how it goes.

In other news, I've ordered my christmas present online - I really wanted to get a $400 Zing cutting machine... but somebody put the Cricut Cake machines on sale for $50 each with two cartridges included, and I'm assured by people who have already bought one that yes, you can use it for paper if you change out the cutting blade for a 'paper' one instead and buy a sticky mat (the frosting mat is nonstick). Even with the extra cost of the  mats and blade, it's less than $100 for a machine that can cut 12x24 (the one I've got now only does 5.5x11.5) I'm so excited!

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Christmas Cards for sale

Don't die of shock. I crafted! I've made 50 Christmas cards and 14 card-sized gift boxes to sell for a fund-raiser for my church. The gift boxes are easy once you figure out where to make the score lines... Want to buy any? Cards are $1 each, and if you buy 10 I'll throw in a free gift box.

We were challenged to use only $3 each for supplies for whatever we made/bought/came up with as our fund-raiser. I had $6 to play with because John gave me his. Cardstock is regularly going on sale at Joanns for $2 a pack, and the tape runner I use on my cards costs $3 each. I cut a few decorations with my Cricut, but most of them are punched or stamped. Miss Jo over at the library gave me a whole box of beautiful big Christmas stamps a few months ago, and they were a huge blessing for this project! I didn't use any bought papers - they were all either things people had given me, or I pulled them out of my scrap drawers. It was a real challenge to get into the swing of making cards with stamps and paper rather than all the fancy stickers and embellishments I reach for when cost is not an issue! But I'm very pleased with how they came out when I look at them together.
PS. If you're wondering where the envys came from (they're the most expensive part of a lot of cards), I got a huge stack of Hallmark envelopes for $2 at the thrift store last year. I probably got 500 envys for my $2. That makes them how much each? About 1/4 of a cent! lol These cards haven't even started to make a dent in the pile.

A mixed bag. Cards at the top are cut with my Cricut.

Poinsettias - this was a stamp that I cut out, with punched leaves behind it. I love the way it comes out.

Some traditional holly

Angels/Christian cards

Florida snowmen?

Gift Boxes