Friday, February 14, 2014

Pumpkin Flaxseed Muffins with Molasses

I know! I know! Who would eat such a thing!? (my husband is embarrassed that the recipe is being posted LOL)

As the recipe came together, I wondered if even the dog would turn his nose up to these wonderful snacks!

Actually, the muffins are yummy-moist, and incredibly flavorful without being overly sweet! My secret vice is that I don't really like sugar - I prefer flavor instead!

They smelled fabulous in the oven, and even better after cooling. AND they truly are this pumpkin color!

Easy to make, too, of course.

Pumpkin Flaxseed Muffins with Molasses

  • 1 can plain pumpkin pie puree
  • ¾ cup coarse ground whole wheat flour
  • 1 cup ground flaxseed meal
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 2 TBSP black strap molasses
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • 2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • ½ cup raisins
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts
  • 2 ½ cups rolled oats
  • 1/8 tsp ground cloves
  • 3 tbsp ground cinnamon (use less if desired)
  • 2 eggs
  • Non-stick spray for muffin tins.
The top font muffin here has been cut in half - same color thru and thru LOL


  1. Mix eggs, sugar, molasses, ground flaxseed meal, cinnamon, cloves, salt, baking powder, baking soda and pumpkin thoroughly.
  2. Add whole wheat flour, mix briefly.
  3. Add rolled oats, mix briefly. Allow to sit a few minutes while the oats and flour absorb moisture. If you live in a dry climate, it may be necessary to add a few tablespoons of water. We are in Florida, so that is not necessary.
  4. Finally, add the raisins and chopped walnuts.
  5. Spray non-stick spray even on coated muffin pans because the only "oil" in this recipe is from the organic ground flaxseed meal and the walnuts. 
  6. Bake 30 minutes at 325 for non-stick pans, and at 350 for regular muffin pans.

These Muffins have great color and texture! They really are pumpkin colored.

The molasses and raisins provide iron, potassium and other minerals.

The combination of whole grains helps those who are hypoglycemic.

 If you've never baked with ground flaxseed, it is a great way of inserting lignan phytonutrients rich in vitamins, fiber, minerals and Omega 3 oil in one's diet.

ADDENDUM one week later: A friend asked for the "stats" on this muffin.

Each Muffin contains:

283 calories
Total Fat is 13g*
   Total Saturated Fat is less than 1.75g
   Total Mono & Poly unsaturated fats = 11.25g
Total Carb 44g
   Sugar 15.5g**
   Fiber 10g (both soluble and insoluble)
Protein 10g (lots of amino acids)

My friend on Weight Watchers said that each muffin is 6 points (original points, not points plus) (thank you Brenda!)

*NOTE - To reduce fats:
exchange ground Flaxseed for oats or whole wheat flour
eliminate walnuts

The flaxseed and walnuts were used to provide high amounts of OMEGA 3 fats, fiber, protein and other phytonutrients. Substitutions will increase Carb/Sugar count, decrease proteins and Omega 3s.

**NOTE - To reduce sugars: 
exchange raisins for frozen or fresh berries.
exchange brain sugar for Stevia (that does not contain dextrose or sucralose)
leave out Molasses

The raisins and molasses were not only added for flavor, but for nutrition.

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Baked Stuffed Eight-ball Zucchini

Baked Eight-ball Zucchini Squash

1/2 lb. hamburger (or other favorite ground meat)
Scallions, chopped
Onion, diced
Green Bell Pepper, diced
1 Jalapeno, seeded and diced
salt, pepper, garlic powder, Italian seasoning
1/4 cup sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
1/4 cup pepper Jack cheese, shredded,
fresh parsley, chopped
fresh tomato, chopped

Brown ground meat, saute green peppers and onions, drain and set aside.
Boil whole Eight-Ball Zucchini in water for about 10 minutes.
Set aside to cool.

Cut top (stem) of Squash, and hollow out any seeds and soft pulpy material.
Season lightly.
Chop tomato and place into meat.

Place cooled meat mixture into bowl and stir in shredded cheeses, blending lightly.
Stuff into squash.
Wrap in foil and seal tightly.
Place in oven at 350 for about 15 minutes
(just long enough to warm meat & melt cheese)
Garnish to taste.
The Zucchini will be very tender.

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Jack's Easy Green Bean Casserole

Jack's easy Green Bean Casserole

1 pound Green Beans
8 oz of shredded extra sharp cheese
16 oz sour cream
1/8 stick of butter
1 egg yoke
3 or 4 scallions, chopped
Paprika, salt, white pepper to season
1/2 cup bread crumbs

Melt cheese, sour cream, butter and seasoning in pot. Add egg yoke.
Steam beans, put in 9x11 or round baking dish, pour on cheese sauce…
sprinkle on bread crumbs and chopped up scallions.
Bake a 325 for 1/2 hour.

Smothered Pork Medallions with Sage and Apples

Smothered Pork Medallions with Sage and Apples
From Food Network Kitchens (photo from Jack's kitchen)
Cook Time: 22 min
Level:  Easy
Serves:  4 servings
  • 4 (6-ounce) boneless center-cut pork medallions
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 1 large onion, sliced
  • 1 cooking apple, like Rome, Gravenstein, or Golden Delicious, peeled, halved, cored, and sliced
  • 2 tablespoons thinly sliced fresh sage leaves
  • 1/2 cup chicken broth, homemade or low-sodium canned
  • 1 tablespoon whole-grain mustard
Heat a large heavy bottomed skillet over medium-high heat. Dry the pork medallions well and season with salt and pepper. Add the oil to the skillet and heat until shimmering. Lay the pork in the pan and cook until browned on the first side, about 4 minutes. Turn and cook until the second side is browned, about 3 minutes more. Transfer the pork to a plate, and cover loosely with foil.
Add the onions to the skillet, stir and season with salt and pepper. Cover, and reduce heat to medium and cook until soft, about 8 minutes. Add the cider vinegar and stir, scraping up the browned bits that cling to the skillet. Add the onions to the pork.
Add butter to skillet, raise heat to medium-high. Add the apples and sage; cook, stirring occasionally, until golden, about 3 minutes. Stir in the broth and mustard, and simmer until the apples soften, about 2 minutes. Return the onions and any accumulated juices from the pork to the skillet. Simmer to thicken slightly, about 2 minutes. Nestle the pork in the onions and heat until the meat is warmed through.
Divide the pork medallions among 4 plates and smother them with apples and onions. Serve.

Apple Cake

Apple Cake

3 eggs
2 cups sugar
1-1/2 cups butter or canola oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon (more if your family enjoys it)
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 cups sliced peeled apples (Granny Smith are our favorites)
1 cup chopped pecans or walnuts
(NOTE: If you don't enjoy baking from scratch, try using your favorite yellow cake mix with 1 1/2 cups of butter/oil and no water)
  1. In a large bowl, beat the eggs, sugar and butter. 
  2. In separate bowl, combine remaining dry ingredients and briefly mix with whisk or fingers. Then add to wet ingredients (batter will be very thick). Fold in apples and nuts.
  3. Pour into a greased 10-in. fluted tube pan (bundt pan). Bake at 325° for 1-1/4 to 1-1/2 hours or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool for 10 minutes before removing from pan to a wire rack.
  4. For a glazed appearance, melt a little butter on the top of the cake to make it shiny.
  5. If desired, drizzle a honey glaze or powdered sugar glaze for more sweetness.
Honey Glaze
2 tablespoons honey
1 cup powdered sugar 
2 tablespoons water or milk (add gradually to mixture)
Drizzle atop cake


Old Fashioned Apple Pie

Old Fashioned Apple Pie
(photos from Jack's kitchen)

To qualify as a great apple pie, the mixture of apples should create a combined sweet-tart flavor balance. Serve slightly warm with vanilla ice cream or with a wedge of cheddar cheese.
Quote is from the book "Mad Hungry," by Lucinda Scala Quinn (Artisan Books).
To view a video with tips for creating delicious apple pies and crusts click here:
This recipe is adapted from Martha Stewart’s “Old-Fashioned Apple Pie”.

2 tbsp all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
2 pie crusts
12 apples sliced, peeled, cored (we prefer mixing tart with sweet apples)
3/4 cup sugar, pllus additional for pie top
Zest and juice of 1 lemon
1.5 tsp cinnamon (we used 1 tbsp + 1tsp cinnamon)
1/2 tsp nutmeg
pinch ground cloves
2 tbsp unsalted butter
1 large egg, beaten

Heat oven to 375F. Create two 1/8-inch thick, 11-inch pie crusts. Press one crust into pie plate. Place the other on waxed paper and cover with plastic wrap. Chill all pastry until firm, about 30 minutes.
In a large bowl, combine apples, sugar, lemon zest and juice, spices, and flour. Toss well. Spoon apples into pie pan. Dot with butter, and cover with remaining crust. Cut several steam vents across the top crust. Seal by crimping edges as desired. Brush with beaten egg, and sprinkle with additional cinnamon sugar (or just plain sugar).
Bake until crust is brown and juices are bubbling, about 1 hour. Let cool on wire rack before serving.

Pie Crust also from
2 single 10 inch pie crusts:
2.5 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp salt
1 tsp sugar
1 cup unsalted butter, chilled and cut into mall pieces
1/4 to 1/2 cup ice water.
  1. In the bowl of a food processor, combine flour, salt, and sugar. Add butter, and process until the mixture resembles coarse meal, 8 to 10 seconds.
  2. With machine running, add ice water in a slow, steady stream through feed tube. Pulse until dough holds together without being wet or stick; be careful not to process more than 30 seconds. To test, squeeze a small amount together: If it is crumbly, add more ice water, 1 tbsp at a time. 
  3. Divide dough into two equal balls. Flatten each ball into a disc and wrap in plastic. Transfer to the refrigerator and chill at least 1 hour. Dough may be stored, frozen, up to 1 month.