Saturday, August 1, 2015

The Case of Creamy Chocolate Pudding

The results of my social media Chocolate Pudding Picture Poll are in and you overwhelmingly like your chocolate photos close up! Here is the winning shot in all its lusciousness!

Creamy Chocolate Pudding

1 avocado
1/4 cup cacao
3/8 cup agave syrup
1/4 cup water
1 tbsp vanilla

In your blender, blend all the ingredients until creamy.

Refrigerate the pudding covered for at least 30 minutes.

Pipe into dessert dishes.

Serves 2.

Becki

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Wednesday, July 1, 2015

The Case of Spicy Hummus, Plus Summer Sizzles 2015!

The crispy texture and fruitiness of these cranberry almond crackers pairs perfectly with my creamy, garlicky, Spicy Hummus. Dig in! Now you're ready for—

SUMMER SIZZLES 2015


 Great things come in threes this July!
 
  1. 'Share the Imajin Books Buzz' contest: Readers can share our events on Twitter and Facebook, and share pics of A PURSE TO DIE FOR on ereaders or holding one, and receive entries into our Summer Sizzles Giveaway! Grand prize winner: 12 free ebooks (winner’s choice). Plus 10 winners of single ebooks. Open to anyone 18+. Void where prohibited. Draw will take place the first week of August. Rafflecopter form for contest entries will be at http://www.imajinbooks.com/contests-events from July 1-31, 2015.
  1. Summer Sizzles eBook Sale – www.imajinbooks.com/sale: Most of our ebooks will be priced at $0.99 or $1.99 from July 6-16, on Amazon & Smashwords (coupon codes for latter).
  1. Summer Sizzles Facebook Party: For one evening only, Sunday, July 12th, we'll be holding a Facebook Party online and giving away prizes (ebooks and gift cards from Amazon). The party begins at 4:00 PM PDT (Pacific!) and goes until 8:00 PM PDT on July 12. Join us at: https://www.facebook.com/events/484341911728130.
  Happy reading, have fun and good luck!
 
Becki

Monday, June 1, 2015

The Case of Spring Risotto

Spring Risotto

2 cups water
2 rounded tsps (for 2 cups) vegetable bouillon powder
1 shallot, minced
2 carrots, chopped
2 tsps butter
1 tsp olive oil
2/3 cup Arborio rice
1/6 cup white wine
1/2 bunch asparagus, chopped
1 cup fresh peas
1/6 cup grated Parmesan
1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
salt
pepper

Prepare a bouillon with the water and vegetable bouillon powder.

In a large pot over medium heat, sauté the shallots and carrots in the butter and olive oil for 2 min.

Add the rice, and sauté for 5 min.

Add the white wine, and stir until it's nearly absorbed.

Add 1/3 cup of the bouillon, and stir and continue to simmer until liquid is nearly absorbed. Continue adding 1/3 cupful’s of the bouillon and stirring.

With the last addition of the bouillon, add the asparagus and peas.

Add 1/3 cupful’s of water if needed, and stir and simmer for a total of 25 min. or until the rice is creamy and firm but not hard.

Stir in the Parmesan and parsley. Salt and pepper to taste.

Serves 2.

Becki

Friday, May 8, 2015

The Case of Vegetarian Detective in Italy

Buon giorno!
 
I feel like a snob saying, "I'm just back from Italy." That's me: jetsetter. Yeah, right!
 
But wow...Italy!
 
I could talk up a storm, and I surely will as I adjust to being back here, six time zones from magnificent Italia. I often ask people who've just travelled what was their favourite part of their trip. If I ask the same of myself, my answer is seeing Michelangelo's sculptures. His Pietà and The Statue of David literally moved me to tears. I just can't believe I saw "him" in person!
 
So...our plane from Toronto was delayed six hours and we missed the first day of activities, but we still visited Rome, Montecatini, Siena, San Gimignano, Pisa, Vinci, Florence, Cinque Terre and Assisi. Quite the agenda for ten days, including the two flight days, wouldn't you say? But Trafalgar made it work. I would go on a Trafalgar trip again in a heartbeat.
 
Things I learned in Italy:
 
  • In the regions we visited anyway, large rimmed plates are not used for pasta. Bowls or smaller plates are used.
  • It's not trendy to grate Parmesan into large flakes or to top pasta with Parmesan curls. Italians grate their Parmesan very fine.
  • Italians have built their villages on the top of large hills, not nestled in valleys.
  • Each and every village warred with every other village and there are still serious rivalries today.
  • Leonardo da Vinci was not a pacifist.
  • It's very true that gelato is addictive. I'm making do with ice-cream now that I'm home.
 
Cynthia will be posting more pictures on Twitter and Google+, so stay tuned if you want to see what a Trafalgar bus tour in Italy is like.
 
Becki
 
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Saturday, March 28, 2015

A Quick Sketch at the Scene: Chocolate Banana Protein Smoothie

So I veganized (no that's not criminal) my Chocolate Banana Protein Smoothie recipe... It's now raw as well, and tastes lighter and more refreshing than ever. I'm pleased to say it's featured on Karen's Killer Fixin's **Author Special**.
 
Click on the screen shot below to grab the recipe and visit the website of award-winning author Karen Doctor/K.L. Doctor. Have you read her SATIN PLEASURES, CATCH THAT SANTA, and KILLING SECRETS?
 
http://www.karendocter.com/karens-killer-fixins-author-special-with-cynthia-st-pierre.html
 
Becki
 
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Monday, March 2, 2015

The Case of Lemon Broccoli Soup

Lemon Broccoli Soup

2 cloves garlic, minced
1 lb broccoli florets and stems (peeled and coarsely chopped)
1/2 onion, chopped
1/2 lemon, juiced and zested
3 rounded tsps (for 3 cups) vegetable bouillon powder
water
1/2 cup light coconut milk
pepper

In a covered pot, simmer the garlic, broccoli, onion, lemon juice and zest, vegetable bouillon powder, and water to barely cover, until the vegetables are tender.

Blend and return to the pot.

Stir in the light coconut milk.

Grate pepper on top to garnish.

Serves 2.

Becki

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Monday, February 2, 2015

Happy Valentine's Day and The Case of Red Pepper Soup

The next step beyond vegetarianism is veganism. I want to take it.

Even if I believe that it's possible to enjoy milk and butter and cheese without cruelty to the animals that provide them, I also believe that in our mass-market society, the norm is not cruelty-free dairy.

The next step beyond veganism is the raw food movement and it is utterly intriguing to me—the theory that vitamins, minerals and especially digestive-friendly enzymes are preserved by not heating food above 118ºF. Besides, when I eat raw I feel wonderful afterward. That's good enough for me!
 
Follow along with me as I continue to search for ways to eat healthy, delicious food in a cruelty-free and environmentally friendly way. I know that I'll take a few steps that make it seem like I'm moving backward. Perhaps when I crave a recipe like my Butternut Squash Risotto, that's vegetarian but not vegan or raw. But this is a life journey after all. A fabulous adventure, not a race. And certainly not a competition to be judged.
 
So let me share with you a recipe that's as kind and as close to nature as it's possible to get.
 
Try it yourself and see what you make of the raw food evidence.
 
Red Pepper Soup
 
1/4 cup sun-dried tomatoes in oil, drained
3 red peppers, cut in pieces
1/8 cup red onion
1-1/2 cups water
1/4 cup olive oil
2 tbsps agave syrup
8 strawberries
6 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 tbsp rosemary
salt
pepper
 
In a high-speed blender, blend together the sun-dried tomatoes to rosemary until smooth.
 
Pour into a pot and salt and pepper to taste.
 
Heat on low, stirring constantly so the soup at the bottom of the pot doesn't boil, until a thermometer reads 115ºF. Because heat rises so quickly, remove from heat immediately so temperature doesn't go beyond 118ºF.
 
Serves 4.
 
Becki
 
PS So did you try it? Did you like it? If the button below says "No Comments", start the conversation yourself by clicking and saying hello.
 
PPS Happy Valentine's Day!