Front Porch Farming, Front Porch Cooking, Front Porch Schooling, Front Porch Nutrition

Monday, March 19, 2012

Cauliflower, Sweet Potato and Kale Curry

After coming home from a much needed break over the weekend, I fell into a cooking slump. Eating out and worrying only about my own stomach left me unconcerned. However, when I returned home and all of sudden I have 3 baby birds with mouths wide open waiting to be fed ALL THE TIME my brain went into shut down mode. My friend, Susan, posted a vegetarian curry recipe and thought AHA! She saved the day...or shall I say dinner. I had no meat thawed out for dinner so it worked perfect. I poked around in the fridge and the pantry and came up with this very delicous curry. It is almost vegetarian-and I say almost because the only product in it that wasn't was the homemade chicken stock I keep in my fridge. You can substitute vegetable broth for that.
4 cups homemade chicken stock
1 onion chopped
2 cloves garlic
1 medium sweet potato chopped
1 whole cauliflower cut into bite size pieces
4 kale leaves chopped
3 tsps curry powder
1 can coconut milk
1 can of chickpeas
1 tsp sea salt
1/2 cup golden raisins for garnishing
1/2 cup unsweetened coconut for garnishing
First add a little coconut oil and the chopped onion to your large fry pan. Saute the onion until it begins to soften. Add 4 cups of stock and rest of chopped veggies. (Not the kale!) When they begin to soften add your curry powder and salt. When completely cooked through and soft add the can of coconut milk, kale and chickpeas; reduce heat. It will only take a couple of minutes for the kale to wilt slightly. Serve over brown rice and garnish with golden raisins and coconut. Enjoy!

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Kale and Beet Salad

Kale and Beets and Goat Cheese..oh my!

I happened upon this scrumpcious salad simply by accident. I recently bought beets at the grocery store the other day and knew I wanted to do "something" with them, but wasn't sure as to what. I decided that I would roast them with the skins on with a few cloves of garlic. So that is what I did. I put my beets in some tin foil, drizzled them with olive oil, salt, pepper and garlic and put them in the oven at 400 degrees for about an hour. When they were done, I let them cool slightly, slipped the skins off and chopped them up. They smelled wonderful. Then it occured to me to put them on my salad. We recently got some Dino Kale (delicous and nutricious) so I cut that up, added some romaine, put on my beets, found some goat cheese, chopped walnuts and drizzled my own homemade dressing. It was soooo good. Now-might I mention that eating clean does not really endorse dairy. We do dairy very minimally. It has to be fresh and raw if at all possible. And cheeses like goat cheese MUST have a short, short, short ingredient list. Many cheeses will have added ingredients like Natamycin which is a mold inhibitor to sustain shelf life. Remember if food goes BAD on you, then it is GOOD for you. I don't want things added to it to keep it from getting bad. I want it in its' purest form. Anyway, enough ranting about that. Here is the recipe for the salad if you are brave enough to eat beets:

3 leaves Dino Kale chopped (Stems removed)
3 leaves Romaine lettuce chopped
3 beets roasted (only 1 beet per salad)
2 oz. goat cheese crumbled
1 Tbs. walnuts chopped

Juice of 1 lemon
1/4-1/2 cup of olive oil
1 tbs. liquid aminos
1 tbs. agave or honey
1 inch peeled and chopped ginger
Mix well and pour. I keep mine in a mason jar in the fridge until gone.

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Homemade Pumpkin Spiced Granola

My husband was going to be leaving for a Broomball Tournament in the Cities and I wanted to make something healthy that he could eat for breakfast that would keep him energized and his blood sugars stable-ALL DAY! He was going to be playing 3 games for sure in one day and we knew that -that much exercise to a type 1 diabetic can be hard on his blood sugar. Rewind a couple of weeks ago- he played in the Nisswa Jubilee and that morning for breakfast I made him a bowl of our homemade yogurt ( made from raw whole milk. LOADED with protein and B vitamins. To that we added chia seeds, granola and hemp seed. Also, lots of protein and healthy carbohydrates. He said he played well that day and never felt hungry or like he was getting low. So, since he was going out of town I wanted to make something he could take with him. Hence-more yogurt and granola. We made this granola from scratch and it was absolutely delicious. Thought I would share it with you:
4 cups of old fashioned rolled GF oats
2 cups shredded coconut
2 cups sliced almonds
3/4 cup coconut oil (melted)
1/2 cup good honey
1 1/2 cup chopped dried fruit. (I used dates, apricots)
1 cup of chopped dried cranberries
1 cup chopped walnuts
1/2 cup chia seeds
1/4 cup sucanut
1 Tbs. cinnamon
1 Tbs. pumpkin pie spice
Toss the oats, coconut, almonds, cinnamon, pumpkin pie spice and walnuts together in large bowl. Whisk together the oil and honey-pour over the oat mixture. Mix well. Pour onto large cookie sheet ( I needed 2 cookie sheets). Bake at 350 degrees for 20-40 min stirring occasionally. Granola should be golden brown when done. Take out to cool while still continuing to stir on occasion. Granola will crisp up as it cools. THEN add the remaining ingredients. Dried fruit, cranberries and chia seeds. Mix well and store in an air tight container.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Happy Valentines Day!

Most people like to induldge in wonderful chocolates on Valentines Day and who can blame them? Chocolate is the best thing EVER discovered. Aside from coffee (which I no longer drink anymore :( ), I think chocolate is the BOMB! Love, love, love, love all kinds of chocolates. I have had a love affair with chocolate for as long as I can remember. I have been known to eat full bags of Cadbury Mini Eggs in one sitting-without blinking and then looking for more. My kids have the same love affair with chocolate as I do. Well, since we are living clean it is not always easy to find chocolate goodies in its' purest form. It is almost all mass produced. Well...I came up with a chocolate strawberry ice cream. And it is delicous and healthy for you too. I got the "rolling of the eyes" delicious sign from the kids and I tried a spoonful and thought it was tasty as well. I made my own sugar free and almost fat free chocolate syrup to drizzle on top. I hope you try them and enjoy them as well. The recipes are as follows:


1 cup homemade kefir (you could use plain greek yogurt)

1 1/2 cup frozen strawberries

1 dropperful of liquid chocolate stevia

1 Tbs. raw cacao powder

Blend in blender until well mixed and thick....if it gets too stuck add almond milk a tablespoon at a time.


1 cup water

1/3 cup raw cacao powder

1 cup xylitol ( 1/2 cup palm sugar, 1/2 cup dark agave)

1 Tbs. pure vanilla extract

Bring water, cacao powder and xylitol to a boil. Boil for 5 min. or until it begins to thicken. Remove from heat and add 1 Tb. of vanilla. Let cool. Pour on top of fresh fruit or ice cream.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

What is Clean Living?

Some may question "What is clean living?", "What does it entail exactly?".'s not a fad, or a diet. It is a lifestyle choice. And it is WONDERFUL!

1) Get label savvy~ Start learning the ingredients in the products you are purchasing. If you can't pronounce it or have any idea what it is-investigate. Clean living foods are foods that are limited to one or two ingredients. Anything with a long ingredient list is human-made and not considered clean. You want a product that is in its purest form. Make things from scratch as much as you can. Again-purest form.

2) Avoid processed and refined foods. ( No white anything!)

3) Shop with a conscience~ Consume humanly raised and local meats if you are a meat eater. Support your local farmer's market. Any meat processed commercially has been put through the ringer. It is literally junk and unrecognizable metabolically by our bodies.

After learning about the toxic ingredients in many of our day to day products, I knew that I could do something different. I came across several recipes for making my own personal hygeine products like toothpaste, deodorant, shampoo, dishwashing liquid, laundry soap, etc. I knew what I was putting on my body and I knew that it was a lot healthier than store bought products like Suave or Dove. (Those rate extremely high on the toxicity ratings.) I came across this website that put a lot product ingredients into perspective. It helped me understand my label reading.

We grow as much of our own food as we can. (Apple trees, raspberries, strawberries, chokecherries, vegetables, chickens, and pigs.) I am still learning a lot about what grows well in Northern, MN as our summers are short! I have big, big plans for our garden this year. And lots and lots of canning and freezing in store for me. I have already begun drooling over seed catalogs. Can't wait for Spring!

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Healthy Chocolate Gluten Free Pancakes

This morning was the first day back from a wonderful vacation the kids and I took out west. Everyone slept in as we enjoyed our own beds, smells and comforts. Things like that we take advantage of until we miss them. I made everyone chocolate pancakes. Now anybody who knows me knows I don't serve treats for breakfast. (I like treats-rules are after noontime). However, I love chocolate and I knew that in some way I could make this healthy too. They were a HUGE hit.

1 cup cottage cheese (Next time I will try kefir)
6 farm fresh eggs
1/2 c. almond milk
1/2 c. GF flour mix
1 tsp. vanilla
1/4 c. coconut oil melted
dash of pink salt (pink salt is RAW salt-it has not been stripped of its minerals)
2 Tbs. raw cacao powder (antioxidant rich)
1 banana
1 Tbs. maca root powder (vitamin rich)

Mix in blender-pour on hot griddle. These make thin, crepe style pancakes. We loaded them with organic raw almond butter and agave. I think sliced bananas would have been a nicer addition, but ours were not ripe yet.

Saturday, January 21, 2012


This year has been a great year of homeschooling. I feel that I am finally getting my groove on. Ella is in 5th grade, Rex in Kindergarten and Zeke in preschool. Ella is excelling in Math at an awesome rate. She gets that from her Dad's side of the family. I never did real well in Math. Her great uncle was even a High School Math teacher. She has only a few lessons left in the book and then she moves on to the next one which is designed for a 6/7 th grade level. Many of the lessons she is doing are the exact same things I was learning in college a couple of years ago. I'm not sure if this is a good thing or not. At least I remember much of the teachings.

Rex is doing great! He is in Kindergarten technically, however a lot of his paperwork is 1st grade material. He is reading very well now and is able to work independently much of the time. I show him a few new concepts and he can do the rest on his own. This has freed up some of my time to work with Zeke.

Zeke is in preschool and learning the fundamentals. One of the fun things he gets to learn this year is reading site words. These are words that you cannot pronounce- like "the, a, etc". You just have to remember them. He has memorized his color words, yes and no and more. He is learning his phonics and doing awesome. Wow-this whipper snapper is going to keep me on my toes if I don't keep school a bit challenging.