Posts Tagged ‘raisins’

Winter Warming Chinese Herb Poached Pears

Sunday, January 11th, 2009

Organic/natural tastes best.

pearsFor all of you pear lovers out there and especially for the unbelievers, like me, this is a winner.

Sweet, soft, tart and tangy.

I never thought pears could taste this good!

You’ll need:

3/4 Cup Fresh squeezed orange juice
1/4 Cup Tangerine Peel
2 Tablespoons chopped Dates or Whole Golden Raisins
1 Tablespoon Whole Cloves
3/4 Cup Pure Maple Syrup
1 Tablespoon Pure Vanilla Extract
2 Tablespoons Fresh Lemon Juice
4 Bosc Pears peeled, cut in half lengthwise and cored
A touch of your favorite slightly sweet liquor for that little extra…
warmth. A little brandy anyone? Maybe Tuaca? mmmm

To prepare:

Bring all ingredients except for pears to boil in large saucepan. Add pears and reduce heat so that liquid simmers gently. Cover and cook until pears are soft but not mushy when pricked with a fork, 20-35 minutes. Use slotted spoon to remove pears from pan and transfer to serving bowl. Pour liquid in pan through a strainer and discard herbs. Return strained liquid to pan and bring to boil. Simmer until reduced to thick glaze, about 8-9 minutes. Pour glaze over pears. Serve warm or at room temperature.
Alternately, you may cook pears in the liquid covered on low, for about 30 minutes, then remove the cover and let simmer for about 10 minutes more, the liquid will reduce and thicken. Place pears on individual plates and carefully pour glaze on each pear, using the strainer to trap the herbs as you serve individually. Garnish with fresh strawberry halves, mandarin orange slices or fresh mint leaves. Absolutely luscious!

Jealous Monkey’s Banana Bread

Sunday, January 11th, 2009

Organic/natural ingredients taste best.

bananabreadAn old standard but with a taste.

This is something that not only monkeys could love!

Another ‘slice to-go’ snack.

You’ll need:

1-1/4 Cups Unbleached White Flour
1/2 Cup Whole Wheat Pastry Flour
2 teaspoons Baking Powder
3/4 teaspoon Sea Salt
1/4 teaspoon Baking Soda
1/3 Cup Vegetable Oil Canola or other light oil, same if using butter
2/3 Cup Organic Sugar: can mix ‘n match different organic sugars to suit your sweet tooth
2 Whole fresh Eggs beaten
Zest of 1/2 Lemon
1 Cup mashed ripe Bananas, 2 or 3
1/2 Cup chopped Walnuts (optional) or substitute sunflower seeds or your choice
1/2 Cup Golden Raisins

One glass loaf dish or pan greased
Parchment paper (optional) cut to inside of baking dish bottom for quick release
2 medium bowls
Electric mixer or can be mixed by hand with wisk, your choice
350 degree oven for about 50 minutes

To prepare:

Preheat oven with rack in middle. Sift together first 5 ingredients into bowl and resift 3 times (makes loaf lighter). Cream shortening and sugar in a mixing bowl until smooth and fluffy. Add eggs and lemon zest and beat well, scraping bowl sides & bottom to mix through. Add mashed bananas and mix. Add flour mixture in 4 portions and beat until smooth after each. Add walnuts and raisins for a few seconds only to mix through but not to crush. Turn into prepared dish and bake in middle of the oven for about 50 minutes or until cake tester (or knife) inserted into bread comes out clean. Remove to cake rack and cool before slicing. This is by far the yummiest banana cake ever, and it’s gone in sixty seconds, so you’d better plan on doubling this recipe!

ABOUT: Wellness Chef Helen Sandler
Lecturer, personal chef, teacher, wellness coach, & speaker, Helen promotes a healthier lifestyle through common sense, organic / natural approach to a happier, positive life.

Helen Sandler is used to being an innovator and at the cutting edge of whole foods whole grains awareness. After graduating from SUNY, New York with a teaching degree, she began to follow her real passion for healthy cooking which took her from Los Angeles to Boston to attend the cooking school of the late and great master Japanese natural chef, Aveline Kushi. Later that passion took her to Kyoto, Japan to continue her studies, where she spent four more years learning the art of healthy Japanese cooking (Seishoku).

As Wellnes Chef Helen she is the featured authority at CTNgreen /wellness with articles in the library there and the virtual paperless magazine at CTNGreen Magazine