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Some mornings it is just so hard to get up in the morning. Usually I have a protein shake if it is early enough and I am not waking up at 10:30 AM… me and my late buns. Other than that it is usually oatmeal, with its filling fiber and delicious taste. Then there was a day I didn’t feel like chewing, so much work, but really wanted some oatmeal.

Welcome the Banana Oat Smoothie, a cross between breakfast oatmeal and a morning shake that will fuel you without wasting precious chewing energy.

Like I said, this is a happy marriage between oatmeal and shake. As such, it has all of the makings of a luscious and creamy oatmeal. 1 cup of almond milk provides the creamy texture we love from a good shake as well as one gram of fiber and one gram of protein! Almond milk is also rich in Vitamin E, which is essential to a healthy immune system and also supports healthy skin and vision.

An FGF Tidbit – Vitamin E is found in nuts, like almonds, but is also found in eggs and dark leafy green veggies like kale and spinach.

Oats are also on the ingredient list be they are full of fiber, which in turns keeps us filled up. This packed smoothie has half of a banana thrown in too. Creamy, sweet and rich, bananas are known for their high potassium content. Potassium aids the cardiovascular system by helping the body maintain normal heart function and blood pressure. Bananas are a natural antacid, helps your body absorb calcium which leads to stronger bones and can help you with number two, which all together helps you with number one – that’s you!

Banana Oat Smoothie

Banana Oat Smoothie

A touch of vanilla, dash of cinnamon and agave in case your banana wasn’t as ripe as you’d like, and together this smoothie is a power breakfast! Of course, this doesn’t have to be an only morning staple. Enjoy this smoothie as a snack anytime of day for a boost that will keep you energized and focused until your next meal.

Remember, everything we put in our bodies affects us as a whole. From the foods we eat to the stresses of daily life, if I’ve learned anything its that I need to treat my body kindly because the longest, most intimate and rewarding relationship we as human beings will ever have is the one we have with our bodies.

So treat it well. Treat yourself well. And treat yourself to a Banana Oat Smoothie!

Banana Oat Smoothie
Author: 
Recipe type: Snack
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 1
 
A Banana Oat Smoothie is perfect as a snack or blended breakfast with protein rich almond milk, fiber filled oats, creamy banana and a drizzle of sweet agave.
Ingredients
  • 1 cup almond milk
  • ½ cup oats
  • ½ banana, frozen
  • ½ tsp vanilla extract
  • ½ tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp agave
Instructions
  1. Add all ingredients to blender and pulse until fruit is in small chunks.
  2. Increase speed on blender to mix all ingredients until creamy and smooth.

Well guys, we made it this far. This is the 100th post on First Generation Funk! Thanks so much for following and enjoying these delicious recipes and stories from my home to yours! Now onto the good stuff. Cookies!

Now I get it, there are a lot of cookies out there. From the grocery store and the farmers market to those your grandma bakes and sends you on your birthday (lucky you), but there is always a cookie you go back to. A cookie that trumps all cookies when you are looking for something chewy, with just a little sweetness, with tons of nuttiness and crunch to make that coffee/tea break something real special.

Look no further people. The Almond Agave Thumbprint Cookie is here!

This cookie isn’t like any other cookie you have ever had. Trust me when I say, this one is one you will go back to again and again. First off, the base is made with raw ground almonds, fruity coconut oil, aromatic vanilla extract and a bit of tropical rum. This cookie would be good on its own, but then we added more.

Just a tablespoon of agave adds a deeper and softer sweetness to this cookie while almond milk helps moisten it and bring out  the nutty flavor. And what about the jam? What is so incredible about this cookie is you can change the filling to suit your mood. Strawberry, mango, peach oh my! And what about a nutella center? Or a sweet and spicy nut pressed into the middle for extra crunch and savory flavor? This cookie can do it all.

Almond Agave Thumbprint Cookies

Almond Agave Thumbprint Cookies

How is that? Well, this cookie was made for me, which means it was made for you. It molds to any occasion, from a tea break to heart break and celebrations, this cookie has you covered throughout all of life’s messes. This little thumbprint cookie is what other cookies aspire to be – the ultimate, everyday cookie!

Enjoy a batch… or two! I’d give you some of mine but.. I ate them all…

Abrazos!

Almond Agave Thumbprint Cookies!
Author: 
Recipe type: Dessert
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 18
 
Almond Agave Thumbprint Cookies are crispy, chewy, nutty and sweet – perfect as a little, sweet pick-me-up or after dinner treat!
Ingredients
  • 1¼ cups ground almond
  • 1⅓ cup flour, all-purpose
  • ½ cup sugar
  • ½ tsp baking soda
  • 4 tbsp coconut oil
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 tbsp rum
  • 1 tbsp agave
  • ¼ cup almond milk
  • ¼ cup strawberry jam
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350. Prepare baking sheet with baking mat and set aside.
  2. In a stand mixer bowl fitted with the paddle attachment, combine ground almond, flour, sugar and baking soda.
  3. Add coconut oil, vanilla, rum and agave to flour mixture. Beat on speed 2 until mixture resembles coarse crumbles.
  4. Stream in almond milk and beat until the mixture comes together.
  5. tablespoon at a time, create balls of cookie dough, slightly flatten and place on cookie sheet. Press thumb into cookie to create a divot. If cookie cracks just press back together.
  6. Repeat process with remaining cookie dough, ensuring cookies are at least 1 inch apart.
  7. Bake cookies for 7 minutes and remove from oven.
  8. Add ½ tsp of jam to center of each cookie in divot. If divot is not deep enough, press a new one in with the back of your teaspoon.
  9. Transfer cookies back to oven for another 7-8 minutes, until jam is glossy and cookies are golden.
  10. Allow cookies to cool completely in pan before storing or enjoying.

 

Back to that sweet tooth. I have been trying to figure out how to punch up my usual arroz con leche. Cinnamon is the usual way to bring in some flavor, but looking through my spice cabinet I found cardamom. I originally bought it to make some Viennese dishes when I was on my honeymoon. With a whiff I could tell that this was exactly what my arroz con leche needed, that and a tropical edge.

Mwuahaha. Did I hook you?

Yay!

Cardamom Arroz con Leche sounds pretty amazing, I know. And guess what? It was also amazing tasting. OMG, don’t tell anyone but I made two batches. One to use for the photos and to share with my hubby… the other to enjoy all on my own.

You may be wondering why I chose cardamom. Besides it being a delightful aromatic and having an incredible taste, it also has more than a handful of nutritional benefits. Cardamom is related to ginger, and both are used to combat a slew of digestive issues including nausea, heartburn, gas and constipation. It also a diuretic, helps detoxify the kidneys and can freshen your breath all in one go! It’s also an anti-inflammatory, is rich in antioxidants and is even known in some countries as an aphrodisiac. All of that, added to our beloved arroz con leche. Remember all of this when date night comes along. *wink*

Cardamom Coconut Arroz con Leche

Cardamom Coconut Arroz con Leche

So this arroz con leche is steeped with awesome cardamom, but the tropical taste comes from the addition and use of coconut milk instead of cows milk. Coconut milk has its own benefits. It’s also rich in antioxidants, as well as vitamins and minerals that boost the immune system and keep our organs, muscles and bones strong. Of course, I initially incorporated it for some coconut taste and extra creaminess but all of the nutritional benefits don’t hurt.

White long grain rice was switched to brown rice for a chewier, more satisfying texture and the extra fiber, which satisfies my belly. Did it stop me from eating extra? I hope so, because I still had plenty! Like the traditional dish, cinnamon is still a part of my reimagining not only because it adds to the warmth of the cardamom, but because it helps regulate blood sugar, reduce LDL cholesterol and it just tastes amazing!

Cardamom Coconut Arroz con Leche

Cardamom Coconut Arroz con Leche

So there you have it! A dessert that not only tastes amazing but is good for you too, inside and out. And… it couldn’t hurt a date night!

Cardamom Arroz con Leche
Author: 
Recipe type: Dessert
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4
 
Upgrade your usual arroz con leche with the warmth of fall and taste of the tropics. Cardamom Coconut Arroz con Leche is creamy, luscious and smooth with a subtle hint of cinnamon that keeps you coming back for more.
Ingredients
  • 4 cups brown rice, cooked
  • 1½ cups water
  • 1 14 oz can coconut milk, full fat
  • ½ cup cream of coconut, canned
  • 1½ tsp cardamom pods
  • 2 cinnamon stick
  • cinnamon for dusting
Instructions
  1. In a sauce pan on medium-high heat add brown rice and water. Bring to a boil then simmer until all water is absorbed.
  2. In a separate sauce pan combine coconut milk, cream of coconut, cardamom and cinnamon sticks. Bring to a boil then lower to a simmer. Simmer until fragrant, 10-12 minutes, then transfer to a blender and blend until smooth.
  3. Pour mixture through a sieve and add to sauce pan with rice.
  4. Simmer rice with cardamom coconut mixture, stirring continuously until thick and creamy.
  5. Serve with a dusting of ground cinnamon and a cinnamon stick as garnish.

Today isn’t about making your body better, it is about making your soul better. With that in mind, I obviously couldn’t keep my mind off of chocolate. Bate, bate chocolate! Om nom nom. Ok, forget me licking my lips and wishing I had more of these, I introduce to you some delicious, thick and vegan Raspberry Walnut Mexican Fudge!

I’ve been looking at a lot of other bloggers, mostly fashion, and realized how crazy it is that people can just share what they love so easily now. A gorgeous outfit, new shade of lipstick, movie review, novel and, of course, recipes! Most of the time, when I am trying to get ideas for recipes, I eat a lot. I go out to eat, I look at food blogs, I watch the Food Network, look through all of my old magazines and ask friends what crazy things they have eaten recently. Then I look at my fridge and through my cupboard and try to encapsulate the flavors that interest me most.

Raspberry Walnut Mexican Fudge

Raspberry Walnut Mexican Fudge

This fudge came to me because I had a HUGE box of fresh raspberries and dipping them in chocolate ended up breaking them apart. Sad. So I would make myself a little bowl with fresh berries, chocolate chips and walnuts and drizzled it in coconut dulce de leche. I know right! Then the light went off – why not make this into a fudge! Yeah people, I did it. Rejoice.

Raspberry Walnut Mexican Fudge

Raspberry Walnut Mexican Fudge

Raspberry Walnut Mexican Fudge
Author: 
Recipe type: Dessert
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4
 
This vegan fudge is made with sweet coconut dulce de leche, rich cocoa, fresh raspberries, toasted walnuts and a touch of rum with a hint of cayenne making them simply irresistible.
Ingredients
  • 1¼ cups coconut dulce de leche
  • ¼ cup coconut cream
  • 2 tbsp rum
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • ½ tsp cayenne
  • 8 oz semi-sweet chocolate chips, vegan
  • ½ cup cocoa
  • ½ cup fresh raspberries, halved
  • ½ cup walnuts, rough chopped
Instructions
  1. Line a small cake pan with parchment paper. Set aside.
  2. Warm coconut dulce de leche in a sauce pan on medium heat until it begins to bubble. Remove from heat.
  3. Add coconut cream, rum, cinnamon and cayenne to dulce de leche. Stir until fully incorporated.
  4. Add chocolate chips and cocoa to pan and stir until fully incorporated.
  5. Fold in half of the raspberries and walnuts, then pour mixture onto parchment lined cake pan.
  6. Spread fudge evenly and sprinkle with remaining raspberries and walnuts.
  7. Refrigerate fudge for 2 hours or until firm.
  8. Enjoy fresh out of the refrigerator.

 

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Banana Oat Smoothie

2nd April 2014 by Carolyng

Some mornings it is just so hard to get up in the morning. Usually I have a protein shake if it is early enough and I am not waking up at 10:30 AM… me and my late buns. Other than that it is usually oatmeal, with its filling fiber and delicious taste. Then there was a day I didn’t feel like chewing, so much work, but really wanted some oatmeal.

Welcome the Banana Oat Smoothie, a cross between breakfast oatmeal and a morning shake that will fuel you without wasting precious chewing energy. Read more…

Big 100 plus Almond Agave Thumbprint Cookies!

28th March 2014 by Carolyng

Well guys, we made it this far. This is the 100th post on First Generation Funk! Thanks so much for following and enjoying these delicious recipes and stories from my home to yours! Now onto the good stuff. Cookies!

Now I get it, there are a lot of cookies out there. From the grocery store and the farmers market to those your grandma bakes and sends you on your birthday (lucky you), but there is always a cookie you go back to. A cookie that trumps all cookies when you are looking for something chewy, with just a little sweetness, with tons of nuttiness and crunch to make that coffee/tea break something real special.

Look no further people. The Almond Agave Thumbprint Cookie is here!
Read more…

Cardamom Arroz con Leche

20th March 2014 by Carolyng

Back to that sweet tooth. I have been trying to figure out how to punch up my usual arroz con leche. Cinnamon is the usual way to bring in some flavor, but looking through my spice cabinet I found cardamom. I originally bought it to make some Viennese dishes when I was on my honeymoon. With a whiff I could tell that this was exactly what my arroz con leche needed, that and a tropical edge. Read more…

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