Blog | Eat Well

Pumpkin ‘Brigadeiro’

January 24, 2020

Before we get to the pumpkin ‘brigadeiro’ recipe, I want to first explain what a brigadeiro is.

Brigadeiros are a delicious chocolate sweet from Brazil. They are basically this little chocolate fudgy balls covered in chocolate sprinkles. And before you even wonder if these are healthy, I will crush those thoughts right now. They are definitely one of those treats to have once in a while. Like birthdays and special occasions. Because the main ingredient that goes into the recipe is condensed milk. So yes, it’s pretty high in sugar.

Brigadeiros are very simple and inexpensive to make. Which is probably why they are so popular back home. Well, it doesn’t hurt that they are basically the best dessert in the world! In my opinion at least.

A traditional brigadeiro will have a can of condensed milk and about 3-4 spoons of cacao. Some people like to add a spoon of butter to tweak up the consistency and look. Others add milk in the same measurement as the condensed milk to make it less sweet and creamier in a way. As for the cooking part, all you have to do is add everything to pan, cook on high-medium heat (stirring) until the brigadeiro becomes thick and closer to a caramel consistency. Once it thickens up, allow for it to cool, make little balls and roll on some chocolate sprinkles. Voila!

There isn’t a single birthday party that you’ll attend in Brazil where you won’t find these. A party is not a party without brigadeiros. Americans learn to cook scrambled eggs. Brazilians learn to cook/make brigadeiros. And to my pure delight, you can find any flavor brigadeiro that you can imagine.

So the other day I had to figure out what to do with 1/2 a can of pumpkin puree that I had leftover in the fridge from my pumpkin bread recipe. How about exploring with a brigadeiro recipe? I haven’t seen pumpkin brigadeiros before and I’m always up for some experimenting. Especially when the chances of it going wrong are so low. Pumpkin and condensed milk, what’s not to love?

So I made my recipe and it came out so delicious! If you are a fan of pumpkin pies, this is for you. And it’s pretty inexpensive to make, which is a nice bonus.

The only PS that I have to add here is that the consistency of my pumpkin brigadeiro was different from a traditional brigadeiro. Which is why I put the name in quotes. But I guess this experiment just helped create something delicious on its own. Maybe next time I’ll cook it for longer to see what happens. Who knows, maybe we can get it there. For now, I’m signing off to enjoy some delicious pumpkin ‘brigadeiros’ covered in coconut shreds.

Pumpkin Brigadeiro
Pumpkin ‘Brigadeiro’ with Coconut Shreds

Pumpkin ‘Brigadeiro’ with Coconut Shreds Recipe

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 can condensed milk
  • 1/2 can pumpkin puree
  • 1 1/2 tsp pumpkin spice
  • Coconut shreds to cover

Instructions:

  1. Place all ingredients in a pan and cook in medium-high heat stirring frequently until it thickens. When you stir, you’ll notice that you’ll be able to see the bottom of the pan for longer when it’s getting thicker.
  2. Once sweet thickens up, transfer it to a big plate to allow it to cool. You can let it set in the fridge for a couple of hours or overnight.
  3. Roll sweet into little balls and cover with coconut shreds.
  4. Enjoy! Try to consume within a week.

Carrie, my little sous-chef and essential part of The Nutrinut team.
She loves cooking and baking days too!

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Blog | Eat Well

Yummy Guacamole Recipe

January 23, 2020

This was officially my first time making guacamole.

Yes, I know that I am super late to the game. But can you blame me? When your partner is Mexican and a foodie, you get nervous messing this one up. Know what I mean? Guacamole is a really basic recipe. But sometimes the simpler the recipe, the more ways it can be messed up. Maybe that’s just me getting in my own head.

Don’t get me wrong, I’ve experimented plenty with avocados. I’ve even come kind of close to making guacamole without officially calling it guacamole. Avocado toast, avocado dips, avocado everything. I’ve just about tried a little bit of everything.

So naturally when said Mexican partner travels for business, I put on my big girl pants and attempted to make the beloved guacamole. Especially because over the weekend we had found super cheap avocados (which is a miracle in Miami) and I stocked up. I mean $0.39 per avocado is unheard of. Thank you Aldi.

First thing is first. If I learned anything from JP is that if I am to attempt to make an official Mexican dish, I have to find a recipe created by a local. It is what it is. I don’t question it. And that’s what I did!

I found a recipe and sent it over to JP for the ‘approval’. I got the almost green light on the recipe. And I say almost because in the author said that jalapeno was optional. For JP, jalapeno is NEVER optional. It’s a necessity.

At the same time, I wouldn’t be The Nutrinut if I didn’t just go with the flow and follow my ‘mad scientist in the kitchen’ voice. So I tweaked here and there and no jalapeno for this girl. And before you judge, spicy spices tend to completely numb my tongue resulting in me not tasting anything anymore. No thank you. I love food and I want to be able to taste every single spice and ingredient.

The guacamole came out AMAZING! I enjoyed it on top of stuffed sweet potatoes with lentils and it was so yummy. Then the next day I had the leftover with my morning scrambled eggs. But the recipe obviously also works with crackers and chips.

Guacamole with Stuffed Sweet Potato

Here’s my final tip. Try to make what you’re going to eat that day or max finish it the next day. Keep in mind that avocados tend to get dark after you open them up. You’ll notice that this too can happen to your guacamole if you don’t consume everything on the same day.

Yummy Guacamole Recipe

Serves about 3 or 4 – depends on your love for guacamole

Ingredients:

  • 2 Hass avocados
  • Juice of 1 lime (it’s the green one in case the name confuses you too 😉 )
  • 1/4 white onion chopped
  • 1 small tomato (I used Roma)
  • A handful of fresh cilantro (chopped)
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Instructions:

  1. Chop the onion, tomato, and cilantro.
  2. In a small/medium bowl, mash the avocados with a fork.
  3. Add salt, pepper, chopped veggies, and lime juice. Mix all ingredients with your fork.
  4. Enjoy!
My yummy Guacamole

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Blog | Eat Well

Pumpkin Bread

January 16, 2020

Who doesn’t love a good pumpkin bread? It’s one of the fall favorites, and let’s be honest here, pumpkin and pumpkin spice everything are much welcomed flavors in my life year-round. Pumpkin pie, pumpkin bread, pumpkin spice lattes, pumpkin cookies, pumpkin soup. Well you get it.

I’m the first to say that I am not a chef and therefore can’t take credit for this recipe. I’m just a food lover and nutrinut that enjoys exploring and experimenting with different recipes. This one I found randomly one day while looking for YouTube videos of one of my favorite chefs on Instagram: Mikaela Reuben.

I typically don’t care much for Instagram, but I love everything about Mikaela’s style. When I see her recipes, pictures, and videos it just really speaks to me. Definitely check her out. Although I didn’t find too many Mikaela YouTube videos, I did see that her recipe tweaks were featured in a Karlie Kloss video. So this one I had to try.

This pumpkin bread received The Nutrinut seal of approval! I made a few tweaks to the recipe and all-in-all it was pretty simple to make and rich in wholesome and nourishing ingredients. Let’s not forget absolutely delicious!

Here is how I made my Pumpkin Bread.

Pumpkin Bread Recipe

Makes 1 loaf

Wet Ingredients:

  • 1 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1 mashed banana (ripe)
  • 1 cup pitted dates (soak in warm water to soften and cut in small pieces)
  • 1/3 cup maple syrup
  • 1/3 cup coconut oil
  • 1 TBSP vanilla extract

Dry Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cup tapioca flour
  • 1/4 cup almond flour (grind almonds in food processor)
  • 1 cup chickpea flour
  • 2 tsp pumpkin spice
  • 1 tsp nutmeg
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • sprinkle of salt

Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F, and coat baking dish or Pyrex with a little coconut oil.
  2. In a medium bowl, add and mix all of the wet ingredients.
  3. Add in all the dry ingredients and mix well until batter is evenly combined.
  4. Pour batter into baking dish and bake for 55-60 minutes. The time will vary depending on how deep your baking dish is.
  5. Enjoy!

Pumpkin Bread

Check out the behind the scenes of making the recipe in the video below. I also share some baking pearls along the way.

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Blog | Eat Well

Maple Tea Time Cookies

January 10, 2020

Nothing beats the smell of freshly baked cookies. I mean, they even have cookie aroma candles for crying out loud. So it’s definitely a thing.

In one of my favorite romantic comedies “Because I said so”, there’s a scene where Mandy Moore is expecting her date to arrive to her home. To create a warm, yummy, and welcoming environment she puts cookies to bake in the oven.

I’m not sure why that scene is tattooed into my brain. But it just makes sense. Not only do I love that idea, but also have adopted the method a couple of times already. Not for dates, but when friends or family come over. Or to be honest, when I want the house to smell amazing and perfect!

I came across this recipe very randomly online, I believe it was from Unconventional Baker. That’s the problem I have sometimes. I’ll come across recipes, take screen shots of the ingredients and instructions (or just write it down in my planner) and save for later. A lot of times, I won’t have a clue where they came from. Guilty!

I loved this recipe for quite a few reasons:

  1. I had all the ingredients at home. (winning 🙂 )
  2. It required minimal steps and equipment. I love when the recipe does not require me using the food processor. You see, I have to keep my food processor stored away in the back of a cabinet. So the mood has to be right for me want to use it. Lazy much? Sometimes.
  3. The recipe doesn’t make enormous amounts of cookies. I prefer making smaller batches so it doesn’t force me to go on a cookie diet to avoid having stale cookies. Twelve cookies is the perfect number.
  4. These cookies were made using wholesome ingredients. Most cookies can be made up of just sugar, refined flour, and butter. By adding cashew butter you get the bonus of healthy fats and protein.

So enough chatter, let’s start baking!

Like always, I made mine gluten-free but feel free to explore. The chickpea flour added fiber and protein, but if you don’t have that at home, just stick to one type of flour. Or you can even grind some oats into flour and add that instead.

Also, if you don’t have these super cute teapot and teacup cookie cutters, no worries. Roll out the dough and use a cup to make circle shaped cookies. It works just as well here. If you are interested in looking around for similar cookie cutters, I bought mine in Sur La Table. But from what I see, Michaels or Etsy also seem to have them.

I hope you enjoy these maple tea time cookies as much as I did. These cookies go very well with a warm beverage like tea, coffee, or hot cocoa!

Teapot and teacup maple cookies for tea time

Maple Tea Time Cookies Recipe

Yields 10-12 cookies

Ingredients:

  • 4 TBSP all-purpose gluten-free flour
  • 2 TBSP chickpea flour
  • 2 TBSP cashew butter
  • 2 TBSP maple syrup
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. In a small bowl, mix all ingredients with spoon (or clean hands) until a dough is formed and evenly combined.
  3. Roll out dough on lightly floured counter.
  4. Use cookie cutter of choice to make cookies.
  5. Repeat until dough is done.
  6. Bake on tray covered with parchment paper for 10 minutes.

Teapot maple cookie for tea time

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Blog | Eat Well

Easy Banana Bread

January 7, 2020

I LOVE banana bread! Scratch that, I am head-over-heels in love with any recipe that has bananas in it. Real bananas. Not the artificial flavor shenanigans that you often find when you buy something “banana flavored”.

So when you have ripe bananas at home, don’t throw them out. It’s a waste of one of nature’s greatest gifts to us. Instead, use it to bake. There are just so many things you can do with an overly ripe banana. One of my favorite ways to use ripe bananas is baking banana bread!

I kept this recipe simple, but feel free to add/tweak the ingredients and make it your own. You can add 1/4 cup of chopped walnuts for an extra crunch and even swap the cinnamon teaspoon for vanilla extract instead. For the chocolate lovers out there, add 1/4 cup of dark chocolate drops/chips.

This recipe is gluten-free because that’s my personal preference. But if you want to use regular flour, just swap it out for what works for you. If vegan is your jam, substitute the eggs for flax eggs (1 TBSP ground flax seeds mixed in 3 TBSP hot water per egg). Don’t forget about the butter. Use vegan butter instead.

Since this banana bread has fruit in the recipe (the bananas), you might want to store it in a container (with lid) in the fridge. And oh yeah, no preservatives here, so have it within a week ;).

Easy Banana Bread Recipe

Yields 1 loaf

Ingredients:

  • 3 ripe bananas (mashed)
  • 2 eggs (organic)
  • 1/3 cup butter (room temperature)
  • 2/3 cup brown sugar
  • 1 1/2 cup flour (I used 1 cup gluten-free all purpose and 1/2 cup chickpea flour)
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp baking soda

Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease with a little butter a loaf pan.
  2. Combine in mixer eggs, butter, and sugar. Add banana and mix until evenly combined.
  3. Add dry ingredients: flour, cinnamon, and baking soda. Mix just until it blends together. To avoid over-mixing, you can use a spoon to mix the dry ingredients in the dough.
  4. Pour mix into loaf pan.
  5. Bake for 55 minutes.
  6. Enjoy with some delicious warm tea, coffee, hot cocoa, or as is!

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