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Noodles the Healthy Way

Thin, clear rice noodles … a bed of mixed greens, lots of fresh raw vegetables, tofu, maybe some sliced meat, peanuts, fresh herbs and a very light oil-free dressing. Ahhh … a meal from Vietnam-heaven made for warm summer nights! It’s an amazing light, healthy meal. Try this dish this week!

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Healthy Low-Calorie Spring Rolls

I love taking spring rolls to potlucks or serving them at gallery receptions. They are as healthy as the ingredients you roll up inside the rice paper wrappers. They require no cooking (unless you opt for a cooked filling such as steamed spinach, grilled asparagus — or my favorite — shredded chicken breast marinated in a soy-sesame-ginger dressing.) Once you get used to rolling these, they really truly are a super easy appetizer, lunch or side dish. Try these and let me know what you think!

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Old Fashioned Less-Sweet Pecan Macaroons

I listen to the Splendid Table on our local public radio station.
Love that show!
Anyhoo.
Awhile back I heard a segment that included a recipe for coconut macaroons, and decided to save it for the inevitable sweet-tooth-attack.
Well, this morning I wasn’t really having a sweets craving, but … I wanted to bake something in case anybody with a sweet tooth came into the gallery today.
These are a really easy treat to make — leave out the pecans, or substitute a different kind of nut if you want.
They’re low-fat too!

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Chevre Cheese Straws with Caraway and Red Chili

Okay. I admit to bribery. Well. Attempted bribery. I’m hoping that serving up some homemade goodies at our little downtown Helena gallery will entice folks to visit today. I wanted to make something sweet, but having just watched the trailer for the new anti-sugar documentary, “Fed Up,” I decided I also needed to make a savory treat. We had all the ingredients around for a cheesy decadent something-or-other. So, in typical Maureen-fashion, I tweaked a basic recipe and ended up with something I can write home about. These are SO easy — and they are positively addictive. Hope you try the recipe. Or, come visit me at 1+1=1 Gallery today or tomorrow.

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Throwback Thursday Anadama Bread

Lately I’ve been craving the chewy mouth feel of Anadama bread. It really truly no-kidding is incredible delicious!
I broke down and baked some this week. Sigh. It’s so good. My husband loves it too. When he tasted the first warm slice his comment was, “To hell with Dave’s bread. This is better!” That’s saying alot around here. Dave’s bread is Tim’s bread.
I made a slightly healthier version than the one I learned as a college student. I used whole wheat flour and flax meal, less salt, a teensy bit less butter. Read on, to find out how I made this incredibly delicious bread.

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Today’s a Good Day for Hot Ginger Lemon Tea

My favorite way to drink ginger tea is to make it from fresh ginger root, brown rice tea (genmaicha) and lemon zest. The flavors of made-from-scratch ginger tea are incomparable to the store-bought kind. And, what’s really yummy about this recipe is the way the ginger and lemon flavors blend with the toasty-almost-like-popcorn-but-it’s-really-toasted-rice flavor. OMG yummo!

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Eat Your Orange Colors: Old World Butternut Squash Soup

Old World Butternut Squash Soup is a delightful medley of dark orange veggies and sweet/savory flavors. Super healthy for you. This one is different from the pureed butternut squash soup that’s trendy now. I like my squash soup chunky so I can taste all the different flavors and textures. I even add coarsely chopped tart apple for a flavor surprise! Make this soup vegetarian — or not. Either way it’s delicious on a blustery winter day with some hot-out-of-the-oven whole grain bread or a scone and a leafy green salad. A perfect winter meal:

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Peanut Butter Cookies with a Twist

What’s the twist with these peanut butter cookies? Candied ginger and hand-chopped super-dark chocolate chunks. Plus less sugar than most cookie recipes call for. This gives you a deliciously crisp, buttery peanut butter cookie with little surprises of sharp chewy ginger and morsels of the best chocolate ever. And they’re not too sweet. The cookies will be soft and chewy at first, but after totally cooling, they’ll be perfectly crispy/chewy. Lovely with a cup of Darjeeling tea or a glass of cold milk (or whatever milk-alternative you like.)