Pineapple Cashew Fried Rice

5 Jan

adapted by how sweet it is

We have 3 months to go until our wedding and I’m looking to cook healthier, have more meal prep on the weekends, and shed the final lbs before the big day! I wanted something gluten free and still filling and satisfying. Try it for yourself! It came out delicious!

1 cup of whole grain/gluten free jasmine rice
1 cup of light canned coconut milk
1/2 cup fresh pineapple juice
1/2 cup water

5 tablespoons coconut oil
1 red bell pepper, chopped
1/2 sweet onion, chopped
4 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 teaspoon freshly grated ginger
2 cups cubed pineapple
2 large eggs, slightly beaten
3/4 cup of green peas
1 1/2-2 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce
4 green onions, sliced
1/2 cup cashews, some chopped if desired

In a medium size pan, add rice, coconut milk, juice and water, stirring to combine. Bring it a boil, then cover the plan and reduce it to a simmer, and cook until the rice has absorbed all of the liquid – about 20-30 minutes (depending on your rice, following the package).

In a large skillet melt 1 tablespoon of coconut oil over medium high heat. Add in the onions and peppers with a pinch of salt, stir and cook for about 2-3 minutes or until slightly soft. Add in the garlic and ginger, stirring for a minute. Remove everything with a large spoon and set aside in a bowl. Keeping the skillet hot, add another tablespoon of coconut oil and add the pineapple. Stir and cook until golden – about 5-6 minutes. Add to the bowl of veggies. Cook peas per package instructions as well.

Add 1/2 tablespoons of coconut oil to the skillet and add eggs, quickly stirring the entire time they cook, which will take about a minute. Break them apart as much as you’d like. Add eggs to a separate bowl and set aside.

Keep the heat high under the skillet and add 2 1/2 tablespoons of coconut oil. Add in the cooled  rice, tossing to coat, then let sit for 1-2 minutes to crisp up and get golden. Stir, breaking apart any pieces, and repeat for another 1-2 minutes. Repeat another 1-2 times until the rice is crispy and golden.

Reduce the heat to low and stir in soy sauce – if you are not using a low-sodium version, add a bit less and taste before adding more. Add the veggies and pineapple, then stir in the green onions and cashews. Taste and season if you need – this can be eaten alone or can serve as a great base for chicken, shrimp, pork or anything!

SO good!!! and HEALTHY! Enjoy!

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Sour Cream Cherry Torte

15 Dec

Mom – I know you’re reading this!! You always used to make this cake because its simple and easy and I loved it every time. Brings back so many memories every time I take a bite. Love you!

16 oz sour cream
1 stick of unsalted butter (melted)
1 cup of sugar
3 eggs
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 dash lemon juice
1.5 cups of flour
1 jar of cherry pie filling (or fruit of your choice)

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Combine melted butter, sour cream, eggs, and sugar in a bowl and stir until combined. Put in 1/2 tsp of baking soda and splash a dash of lemon juice over it to activate it. Stir mixture again. Finally, slowly add flour, 1/2 cup at a time until combined. The consistency should be like pancake batter, not too watery but not too thick. Add the jar of cherry pie filling slowly, trying to divide evenly throughout. It will go right on top – the cake will bake between the fruit.

So delicious!! Enjoy :) this is one of my favorites!

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Pignoli Cookies

27 Nov

These are SO good. They are light and airy but also so flavorful. If you make these – they will go SO quick you won’t have time to get one yourself! You’ll have to stash a few to the side for later ;)


Happy Thanksgivukkah.

Two 8oz Jars of Almond Paste
4 Egg Whites
1.5 cups of sugar
Pine Nuts for decorating

Place the almond paste into a food processor and pulse until its granular in form. Transfer to a bowl, and gradually add in the sugar. Beat the egg whites until stiff peaks form and fold into the almond/sugar mixture. Mix until everything is uniform. Cover, and place in the refrigerator for about 30 minutes to rest.

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Place some parchment paper onto a baking sheet and create small half dollar sized cookie balls. These spread – so try to aim on the smaller side. Press pine nuts (amount to your liking) into each round ball to flatten a little. Bake for 10-12 minutes or until they are lightly golden in color.


Natasha’s Crumble Cake (So good!)

21 Jul

My grandma has been working with a lady named Natasha for about 20 years. They are like best friends at this point and partners in crime. Each summer, my parents have my grandma and her friend Natasha stay with us twice a week because they work in NJ during the summer months to cater to their clients going down the shore to their vacation homes. They curse in Russian, come with funny jokes and stories, and love to gossip. Natasha started bringing this amazing apricot crumble cake (tort) and every time she brings it I can’t stop eating it. This is one of her home-made recipes. I finally got the brains to ask her for it, and I thought I could never replicate and even though I only tried once, It was still almost the same and super tasty. Not to mention it took me like 15 minutes to make, and 30 minutes to bake! For under an hour, I’ll take it!

Natasha’s Crumble Cake (Apricot Tort/Pirog)

1 stick of unsalted butter, melted and slightly cooled
1 cup of sugar
2 eggs
1 tbsp vanilla extract
2 tbsp sour cream or farmer cheese
1/2 tsp baking soda
2.5 cups flour (or more, depending on consistency)
Apricot or any fruit preserves (1 Jar)

Preheat the oven the 350 degrees. Melt the butter completely and cool it slightly. Add the sugar, vanilla, and eggs, and mix until just combined. Add sour cream or farmer cheese, then baking soda and stir to combine. Add 2.5 cups of flour, mixing with a spoon to combine until able to use hands to form a round ball. Should not be very sticky to the touch, if so, add a pinch more flour. Take 3/4 of the ball and press the dough into a slightly floured 8 ” x 11″ pan, rounding around the sides/edges to hold the apricot preserves. Spread apricot preserves evenly throughout the top of the base. Take the rest of the ball and take quarter sized pieces off at a time, placing them on top of the apricot preserves to almost cover it but not fully (keep in mind dough will bake/spread in the oven). That’s it! Pop it into the oven for 30-35 minutes or until the edges are brown and enjoy!

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Lemon Bars

22 Apr

Lemon Bars – Kind of… maybe this was a flop? who knows.. still pretty yummy. If anyone out there knows why this didn’t come out like all the beautiful lemon bar photos I see on pinterest – please tell me!

Lemon Bars (With Whole Wheat Crust)

1 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 cup butter, softened
1/4 cup confectioners’ sugar

2 eggs
1 cup sugar
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 teaspoon grated lemon peel
Additional confectioners’ sugar


In a bowl, combine the flour, butter and confectioners’ sugar. Pat into an ungreased 8-in. square baking pan. Bake at 350° for 20 minutes. For filling, in a small bowl, beat eggs. Add the sugar, flour, baking powder, lemon juice and peel; beat until frothy. Pour over the crust. Bake 25 minutes longer or until light golden brown. Cool on a wire rack. Dust with confectioners’ sugar. Cut into bars.

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Reeses Peanut Butter Cup Oatmeal Raisin Cookies

21 Apr
I tried to make oatmeal cookies healthier with using whole wheat flour, and added my own twist on what was in my pantry. Mini reeses peanut butter cups! Came out really yummy and perfect for a quick treat.

Yields around 2 dozen cookies


1 Cup Whole Wheat Flour
1 Teaspoon Baking Soda
1/4 Teaspoon Salt
1/2 Cup Butter – 1 Stick – room temperature
1/2 Cup Sugar (or sugar substitute. I used 4 packets of Stevia)
1/3 Cup Brown Sugar
1/2 Teaspoon Vanilla Extract
1 Egg
1/2 Cup Rolled Oats
1/2 Cup Mini Reeses Peanut Butter Cups (crumbled)
1/2 Cup Raisins

Preheat oven to 350. Cream the butter, sugars, and vanilla together on medium speed until combined. Add the egg and beat to combine. Add the whole what flour, baking soda, and salt. Stir in the oats with the crumbled mini reeses peanut butter cups and raisins. Stir to combine and using a cookie scoop, drop the dough onto a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake for about 8 minutes, push down into the center of each cookie gently with a fork, and cookies are done when golden brown.


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Quinoa Pilaf (Low GI)

31 Mar

Low GI

I love Quinoa – ever since i found out it was low GI, i couldn’t believe it. It’s so versatile and can be used just like any rice/couscous. It has a really delicious taste and goes well with any vegetable/meat too.

Quinoa Pilaf

1 Package of Quinoa (2 cups) (see picture for what i used)
4 cups of low sodium chicken broth
1 zucchini, split down the middle, then sliced again down the middle of one side, cut in 1/2 inch round slices
1 cup of a red bell pepper, cut in 1/2 inch pieces
1 cup of an orange pepper, cut in 1/2 inch pieces
1/2 pound of asparagus, sliced diagonally in 3/4 inch pieces
4 green onions, thinly sliced
1 tablespoon chopped fresh Italian parsley
2 cloves of garlic, minced
2 tbsp lemon juice
Freshly ground black pepper, per taste
Sea Salt, per taste

Cook the quinoa in the chicken broth as per package instructions. If no instructions are available, bring chicken broth to a boil, stir in quinoa, lower heat and cover, let simmer for 15 minutes until done. Fluff with a fork when ready. Meanwhile, combine all vegetables in a lightly oiled skillet on medium heat, add minced garlic and lemon juice and saute until soft (about 10 minutes). Combine quinoa with the vegetables. Add parsley and green onions, black pepper and sea salt, and serve.

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