Cherry Pear and Pecan Breakfast Crumble

Cherry Pear and Pecan Breakfast CrumbleI’m still on a cherry kick and I had pears I needed to use….they became a breakfast crumble on Veteran’s Day, a day off of school.  I adapted Healthy Delicious‘s Pear and Cranberry Crumble. This breakfast is was a great start to the day with fresh whipped cream on top. The taste was fresh, crunchy, nutty and not too sweet. This dish could also serve as a dessert topped with the whipped cream or vanilla ice cream.

Cherry Pear Pecan Breakfast Crumble

  • 4 pears, peeled, sliced and cut into medium chunks
  • 3 cups frozen cherries (could substitute sliced apples or another frozen berry)
  • 1/2 lemon, juiced
  • 3 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons flour or corn starch
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 pinch sea salt
  • 4 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
  • 2 cups old fashioned oats
  • 1/2 cup pecans, chopped

Whipped Cream

  • 1 pint whipping cream
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla

Mix pears, cherries, lemon juice, flour (or cornstarch), brown sugar, cinnamon and a pinch of salt in 9×13 baking dish.

Melt the butter and honey in a small saucepan over medium heat. In a mixing bowl, combine the flour, oats and pecans with the butter/honey mixture. Combine until well mixed and all ingredients are moist and crumbly. Spread the topping over the fruit mixture in pan. Top with cinnamon.

To whip cream; pour 1 pint whipping cream into mixing bowl. Using an electric blender or Kitchen Aid beat at highest speed. Add vanilla when cream is getting firmer but just before it forms a peak in the bowl when pulling your blender. Serve with the warm breakfast crumble.

Bake at 350 for 35-40 minutes or until golden brown and bubbly. Serves 6.

Source: Healthy Delicious

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Cherry Vanilla Smoothie

Cherry Vanilla Smoothie

I’ve been buying large bags of frozen fruit for a few months from Costco for smoothies. I noticed last time I stocked up they had a new product – frozen organic cherries. I thought cherries would be a nice add to smoothies and a fresh flavor we only get to enjoy for a short time in the summer. Here’s a recipe for a smoothie using the yummy cherries. I can imagine these cherries would be great in a crisp or cobbler. Hmmm, I think I’ve got something to Pinterest about or substitute in Carol’s Berry Crisp recipe.

Nutrition note on cherries I just learned: Cherries are bursting with antioxidants and anti-inflammatories. And! Bonus points – cherries contain a natural melatonin that can help you sleep. 

Cherry Vanilla Smoothie

  • 1 cup frozen cherries
  • 1 ripe banana
  • 1 cup milk of your choice (I used 2%)
  • 1 cup plain yogurt or plain kefir
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla

Optional: 1/2 teaspoon chia seeds, a handful of ice to make colder and thicker.

Blend all ingredients and enjoy immediately. Serves 2.

Source: Jackie Mack, Lingonberry Lane

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Southwest Chicken Bowl

Southwest Chicken BowlThis is a little of the Southwest in a bowl. It started one night when I was short on time and I pulled out the crock pot and added chicken, a can of black beans, onion, tomatoes and Southwest spices. I had planned to eat the chicken in a tortilla but the girls made a bowl out of it and we topped with guacamole, fresh tomatoes, red pepper and sour cream. The dish was yummy and I will make it again.

Southwest Chicken Bowl

  • 4-6 fresh or frozen chicken thighs
  • 1 – 15oz can of black beans, drained
  • 1 onion chopped
  • 1 – 15oz can of fire roasted tomatoes
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder

Add all ingredients to a crock pot. Cook on high for 4 hours. Chop up chicken into bite sized pieces after cooked, stir well and serve. Serve in a bowl topped with guacamole, sour cream, fresh tomatoes and peppers. Or serve in a tortilla with toppings.

Guacamole recipe click here

Source: Jackie Mack, Lingonberry Lane

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Pumpkin Spice Pancakes

Pumpkin Spice PancakesA day off school is a great day to try a new fall recipe. The recipe is adapted from All Recipes and was easy to throw together with items I stock in my cupboard. The canned pumpkin is the only seasonal item that I stock only in the fall. This is a great breakfast if you’re craving a little fall pumpkin spice and it got a thumbs up from the family.

Pumpkin Spice Pancakes

  • 1 1/2 cups milk
  • 1 cup pumpkin (canned or fresh)
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 2 tablespoon melted butter
  • 2 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • 2 cups flour, all purpose or whole wheat
  • 3 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt

Combine all ingredients in a mixer and blend well. Heat griddle to low/medium. Butter griddle and test small pancake to make sure grill is hot enough. Grease griddle with butter and pour pancake batter onto griddle. Cook each pancake until golden brown on each side. Serve immediately with butter and heated maple syrup. Serves 4.

Source: Adapted form All Recipes.

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Hot Lemon and Honey

Hot Lemon and HoneyA long time ago, when we still lived in Minnesota, even before my daughter was born, it was the holiday season and I got sick. My mom was visiting for the holidays so it’s a good memory and I remember having the chills and her tucking me into bed. Now, I was in my late 20′s at least and there was still nothing like my mom tucking me into bed to make me feel better at that time. During those days I distinctly remember her making me a hot lemon and honey drink. It went down easy and was a kick of vitamin C and just tasted really good at the time. More recently when my family has been sick I have been taking that old remedy of my mother’s and putting on the kettle, squeezing the lemon and adding raw honey. The drink tastes fantastic and the honey seems to coat a sore throat and sooth a cough. The drink’s a little magic with some really healthy ingredients. A quarter cup lemon of lemon juice, according to WHFoods, provides almost 50% of our daily allowance of vitamin C. Now, that’s a big hit of Vitamin C full of antioxidants to strengthen our immune system (see article for detail). And raw honey is another tip top health boost. WHFoods says raw honey is antibacterial, antiviral and anti-fungal. Now that’s a line up of immune boosting sweetness. The most important note on the honey, is buy your honey RAW and local. Raw generally means it has not been processed or heated beyond a temperature that would destroy the nutritional benefits. You can usually find local raw honey at a health food store or your local health conscious supermarket. There are different levels of ‘raw honey’ but according the MD Bee, there is a general rule among bee keepers that honey is not raw if it has been processed or heated beyond what would be normally found in a bee hive. says “Heat above 115 deg F destroys the beneficial enzymes, antioxidants, vitamins, and aroma”.  I buy Wessels Raw Honey which is processed as they describe: “We gently warm the barrels to 105 degrees no warmer then it would be in the hive itself.  Honey is then pumped into a jarring drum, because of the low temperature of the honey you will see a lovely creamy creamed honey at the top of our honey containers….(my favorite part!!). Honey is filtered threw a natural cloth, our process or technique healthy  pollen,beeswax, and other natural hive goodness floating around!!”

So there you have it – a bit about lemon and honey. I’ve served lemon and honey to 4 family members since August. The first, my father in law had a sore throat and the next morning he said it was much better. The second was our exchange student. She loved it and I made it for her at least twice. The 3rd and 4th my husband and daughter in the last few weeks both have had a cough. At night they share a 16 oz lemon and honey drink and have said the next morning they slept better and less coughing. Now if we can only find a natural miracle remedy to make that cough go away for good. Let me know if you know something I don’t.

Hot Lemon and Honey

Juice the lemon using a cup sized juicer (see mine in photo) or squeeze the lemon juice into the cup by hand. Using the juicer I add the extra pulp to the drink. Add a tablespoon of raw honey, mix and serve.

Source: Carol Mack

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Multigrain Cherry Granola

Multigrain Cherry GranolaThis is the first time I’ve made granola and it was so easy and the product is tastier than I can buy in a waxed bag and box from the grocery. The grains are fresh and the yummy coconut oil and honey add a sweetness to the nutty flavor. I adapted this recipe from Aggie’s Kitchen. For the multi grains, I used a cereal similar to old fashioned oats but with rye, barley, oats and wheat grains – Country Choice Organic was the brand from Trader Joe’s. You can replace the multigrain with just oatmeal. The granola is versatile and can be used as a topping for ice cream, oatmeal, in a yogurt parfait, as a cold cereal with your favorite milk. I sent the granola to school as a snack on it’s own in lunches this week. It’s a nutty sweet treat and takes about 30 minutes of your time from start to finish. Cool and it’s ready to munch on.

Multigrain Cherry Granola

  • 2 cups old fashioned oats
  • 2 cups multigrain cereal (I used Country Choice Organic wholegrain cereal with rye, barley, oats and wheat – similar to old fashioned oats that need to be cooked) – can substitute old fashioned oats
  • 1 cup sliced raw almonds
  • 1/2 cup raw walnuts, chopped
  • 1/2 cup raw pepitas (small hulled pumpkin seeds – can be found in bulk sections or health food stores – they are light green color with whitish hulls removed) – can substitute walnuts or almonds
  • 1/4 cup wheat germ
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/3 cup coconut oil
  • 1/3 cup raw honey
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 1 cup whole dried cherries, chopped (can substitute raisins)

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. In a large mixing bowl combine the oats, multigrain cereal, almonds, chopped walnuts, pepitas, wheat germ and salt. In a small saucepan on low heat, melt the coconut oil and honey to a liquid form. Combine the oil and honey with the grains and mix well. On two large baking sheets or two 9×13 pans divide the granola mixture. Bake for 10 minutes. Remove from oven and add cherries equally between pans and mix. Bake for 10 more minutes or until golden brown. Remove from oven, loosen granola in pan and let cool completely.

Source: Adapted loosely from Aggies Kitchen

Posted in Breakfast, Kids in the Kitchen, Snacks | 4 Comments

Cedar Plank Halibut and Roasted Vegetables

Cedar Plank Halibut and Roasted VegetablesGrilling season is still with us for a bit and fall is the perfect time for roasted vegetables. We love to grill our fish on cedar plank and typically it can be purchased at Costco or your local grocery in small packages. It is much more reasonable at Costco and we couldn’t find it there recently. So we decided to try something different. Our local hardware store has raw cedar plank – make sure it’s untreated!! – and my husband bought a 60″ board for $1.68 and cut it himself into 4 pieces. I’ve heard they’ll even cut the plank for free at most stores. Well, if that isn’t an incredible savings over what we spend at the grocery – between $8-10 for a few boards.  The halibut tasted great grilled on the DIY cedar plank.

Cedar Plank Halibut

  • 4 halibut fillets (3 oz or so)
  • 6-8 tablespoons melted butter
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • dill
  • sea salt and pepper
  • 2 cloves garlic

IMPORTANT: Soak the cedar plank immersed in water at least 20 minutes, more is fine. If you skip this step the plank will just burn on the grill…..we soak the plank in the kitchen sink with a pan on top to make sure it is totally immersed.

In a large container, with tight cover, put halibut fillets. Add the melted butter, lemon, sprinkle with dill, salt and pepper and 2 pressed garlic cloves. Cover container and marinate halibut in butter/lemon mixture by moving container around until all halibut is covered. Grill on the soaked cedar plank until halibut is not longer translucent and flakey but do not over cook.

Roasted Beets

  • 2 large beets, cut into 1 inch pieces
  • 1/2 onion, minced
  • olive oil
  • sea salt and pepper

Heat oven to 350. Combine all ingredients in an 8×8 roasting pan. Sprinkle with olive oil (about 2 tablespoons) and season with salt and pepper. Roast, turning occasionally, for about 35-40 minutes or until beets are tender.

Roasted Potatoes, Carrots and Onions

  • 3 large carrots, cut into 1/2 and then into 1-2 inch pieces
  • 4 large red potatoes, cut into 1 inch pieces
  • 1/2 onion, chopped
  • olive oil
  • sea salt and pepper to taste

Heat oven to 350. Combine all ingredients in an 9×13 roasting pan. Sprinkle with olive oil (about 4 tablespoons) and season with salt and pepper. Roast, turning occasionally, for about 35-40 minutes or until potatoes and carrots are tender.

Serves 4.

Source: Jackie Mack, Lingonberry Lane

Updated 9/8/13

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Strawberry Pineapple Smoothie

IMG_5314-1This week was high school tryouts for soccer and the first cross country week for our newly minted family member. We are hosting an exchange student from Denmark and she is very excited to be in the US for the high school experience. There is non stop chatter about football games and high school dances and just pure anticipation of the new year. Preview Days at the high school took place and the girls went into get their ID cards photos taken and get their class schedules for the new year. The week has been a great ‘get to know each other week’ but because our daughter was trying out for soccer with two sessions a day it has also been a bit stressful. Our Danish daughter is running cross country which is a no cut sport and that takes the pressure off – good decision by her on choosing sports. Cross country has been a good 2 1/2 hour practice and soccer 5 hours so between the two sports there have been sore muscles.

The week started out with requests for smoothies for breakfast and they continued each day. We’ve had mixed berry smoothies, piña colada smoothies and strawberry pineapple smoothies. The strawberry pineapple smoothie was requested twice so I figured it was a good one to add to the blog. I added coconut water for good electrolytes and yogurt for protein and good flavor. All days except this morning – because I just gapped out – I added about a teaspoon of chia seeds to the mixture in hopes the chia would make the girls run faster and stronger. The smoothies seemed to carry them through the runs and workouts with a piece of toast or bagel on the side slathered in good quality butter.

The good news – both our high school students are on the team they aspired to at the beginning of the week. Yahoo!

Strawberry Pineapple Smoothie

  • 1 cup coconut water
  • 1 cup whole fat yogurt – plain or vanilla (with least amount of sugar & ingredients you can find)
  • 1 heaping cup frozen strawberries
  • 1 cup frozen pineapple pieces
  • 1 banana

Options: 1 teaspoon chia seeds, 1 teaspoon vanilla, or add 1 tablespoon coconut oil and blend before frozen fruit.

Combine all ingredients in large blender and blend until smooth. Enjoy immediately.

Source: Jackie Mack, Lingonberry Lane

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Roasted Beet and Spinach Salad with Balsamic Vinaigrette

Roasted Beet and Spinach Salad with Balsamic VinaigretteI’m back in the kitchen after a long time away. I’ve been back here and there to Portland but we have returned for a good long time. My husband is on sabbatical and we have taken full advantage of the travel time with our 15 year old. In addition to the posts on Sacramento, New England and the Oregon Coast we also spent time in the Midwest with Grandma and Grandpa. We got to go golfing and see their ‘new’ home which is perfect for them. The fall season of sports has embarked upon us and the carpools are organizing with 20 shifts back and forth to the high school this week alone!

Here’s a salad for the upcoming season combining beautiful roasted beets and dark green spinach with the creamiest chèvre (goat cheese) and your choice of toasted nuts. The vinaigrette is easy; double the recipe and save the leftover in a glass jar for your next salad.  I have to say I had recently discovered the Vermont Creamery in an article that was singing the praises for their cultured butter. I’ve looked for their products at local stores and yesterday when I was buying chèvre I picked one up that looked great. I got home and to my delight I’d purchased a Vermont Creamery chèvre. And to my continued delight the chèvre was creamy and delicious and a must in this salad. In fact I scooped out the last bits of chèvre in the bowl with a spoon and my daughter pointed a finger at me and said ‘you ate that like it’s ice cream!’. ‘It’s better than ice cream’ I replied. My husband commented, ‘she’s serious about that’. I will continue to be on the lookout for Vermont Creamery’s cultured butter.

Roasted Beet and Spinach Salad

  • 1 bunch or 5 to 6 small beets
  • 1-2 tablespoons olive oil
  • sea salt and pepper
  • fresh spinach  to fill your salad bowl
  • chopped green onions or chives, a handful
  • 1/4 cup crumbled goat cheese/chèvre or to taste
  • 1/4 cup chopped hazelnuts or your choice

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Wash, peel and slice beets. In roasting pan combine olive oil and season with sea salt and pepper. Roast beets, turning often, for about 20-25 minutes.

While beets are roasting, chop nuts and in small ovenproof bowl toast the hazelnuts for the last 10 minutes of roasting time. Watch the nuts closely, if they are thin, 10 minutes may be too long to toast. I cut my hazelnuts in 1/2 and they were perfect toasted for 10 minutes. Prepare spinach, slice green onions and crumble chèvre for salad. When beets are done roasting, remove and cool a few minutes. In a bowl add spinach only. Toss dressing with spinach. After tossed, add toppings and serve.

Balsamic Vinaigrette

In glass container with lid combine:

  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1 small clove garlic, pressed or chopped
  • 1/4 teaspoon dijon mustard
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice

Refrigerate leftovers and use on almost any salad. Very versatile.

Sources: These recipes are adapted from:  Roasted Beet Salad - Primal Bliss Facebook and the vinaigrette from – MyWholeFoodLife

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Oregon Coast Reunion

Bella BeachLast week my husband’s Minnesota family joined us in Portland and we traveled the few hours to the Oregon Coast for a 5 night reunion. There were 15 of us and potential for more when we made the plans and we rented two homes in Bella Beach, south of Lincoln City. The homes were of darling beach decor and quite functional for 15 family members (including 5 couples) to stay comfortably a block from the beach.

Bella BeachThere were a lot of cards played, cool beach time, bocce ball in the Bella park area, eating around an extended dining table that fit 15, story telling of days gone by, the list goes on. There was time spent in the kitchen preparing meals and cleaning, game time after dinner and some quiet time.

We hiked to Cascade Head upon which is a stunning view south of the coastline to Lincoln City. The hike was about 45 minutes each way and down obviously quicker. We were on our way up and asked a woman if we were almost ‘there’ – she said we were close to where the clouds swirl, her favorite part. We got to a lovely viewing area (not quite the top of the trail) and indeed there was swirling and we stayed away from the cliff edge…….the views were phenomenal and we saw a herd of elk on the hillside below us. Incredible scene for a hike uphill all the way.

Cascade Head, Oregon

We cruised to Newport, Oregon one day and ate on historic Bay Street, checked out the crab pots and the beautiful Yaquina Bay Bridge.

Yaquina Bay Bridge

Our last outing was to the Pacific City sand dune. It was a great place to take a large group with various abilities. Some watched the climbing of the huge dune and some climbed the dune more than once. We all took in the beauty of the immense landmark and my favorite part was running down with such soft landings on each step. Warning: Do not take a camera with an actual lens to the top of this sand dune. The lens will go home with sand in it :/

Pacific City duneI can’t complete this post without mentioning our last dinner at Title Raves in Depoe Bay. We thoroughly enjoyed the seafood and amazing views. Title Raves accommodated 15 at one table. Beyond the outstanding food and seascape, we were together enjoying the Oregon Coast.

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