summer fruit

My mother is Korean, and if you know anything about Korean mothers, you’ll know their obsession with feeding their children fruit. When I visit my mom, I’m usually leaving with a bag of fruit in hand. So it’s no wonder that the bounty of summer fruit factors heavily into my summer eating. You can’t beat just eating them fresh at their ripest, but once you’ve gorged through mountains of cherries, peaches, plums, berries, & melons, you have to start looking for other ways to enjoy them.

I started off making this strawberry summer cake from Smitten Kitchen. It’s become my go to easy cake this year and it’s also delicious with mango. The next two on my to make list are Ina Garten’s mixed berry pavlova and summer fruit galette from David Lebovitz.

I make this big batch of brandied cherries each year and freeze them. These little ruby red gems are fantastic in a Manhattan or an Aviation cocktail, spooned over ice cream or sponge cake, or even drizzled over yogurt. This peach tart from Food52 looks totally doable and I love that it gives a zillion variations. When you’re grilling on the bbq, these grilled peaches with creme fraiche from White on Rice are an easy and elegant dessert.

 
 

For a few healthier options, fruit salads are always a good way to go. After cutting up the fruit, toss with a little lemon or lime juice, honey, and chopped mint leaves. If you have leftovers add them to your smoothie or freeze it for a future smoothie. If you haven’t tried the watermelon salad from Love and Lemons, the salty cheese combined with the melon is a great combination, and these tropical coconut popsicles from Pick Up Limes are a cool snack.

 
 

3 easy healthy snacks

 
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These easy to prepare snacks are healthy and super delicious.

Date & Nut Energy Balls - In a food processor add 5 oz. almonds, 7 oz. medjool dates, 1 Tbs. almond butter, 1 Tbs. cacao powder, 1/2 tsp. vanilla, & pinch of salt. Process until everything is chopped fine. Roll into tiny balls and roll in shredded coconut. Keep in fridge to stay firm.

 
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Cacao Chia Seed Pudding - In a jar with tight cover, add 6 Tablespoons of chia seeds, 1.5 cups of plant milk of your choice, 2 Tablespoons of maple syrup, 1 Tablespoon cacao powder, 1/2 tsp. vanilla, & a pinch of salt. Cover tightly & shake until well combined. Let it sit for a couple of minutes and then shake again to make sure it’s well mixed. Put in refrigerator for a couple of hours. Serve with berries, shredded coconut, or sliced bananas.

 
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Almond Butter & Banana Toast - Spread almond butter on a slice of hearty toasted bread. I like to mash the banana first in a little bowl with a fork before I add it on top of the almond butter. Add a small sprinkle of flaky sea salt.

~ enjoy! xoxo Kai

easy slow cooker applesauce

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this is an easy and healthy snack or dessert that’s great for adults and kids. i used granny smith apples because their tartness balances out the sweet. it’s great on yogurt with a sprinkle of granola or nuts, warm oatmeal, or ice cream. enjoy!

6-8 granny smith apples, cored & cut into quarters

1/2 cup apple juice or cider

3 Tablespoons sugar or honey (i used coconut sugar but any sugar will do)

sprinkle of cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon vanilla

pinch of ground cardamom (optional)

add all of the ingredients in a slow cooker and mix together. put on high and check after 2 hours and mash with potato masher or inversion blender into big chunks. Cook for another 1 to 2 hours checking after each hour and mashing to your desired smoothness. Add a little additional liquid if needed each time you check on it.

healthyish cookies

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these are quite possibly the ugliest cookies ever made. although i enjoy cooking, baking has always been a big challenge for me but stick with me.

as time goes by, i’ve gotten more and more of a sweet tooth. i’ve recently read a lot of people with PD saying the same thing. i usually have a small piece of dark chocolate and sometimes fruit in the evening which most of the time can hold back the dam. but i’ve started looking around for some alternatives that i realize may not “healthy” but at least have a nod towards a few better ingredients.

these are it. they are called lalo’s famous cookies from gwyneth paltrow’s cookbook called my father’s daughter. they are very simple, with few ingredients, and have a not to sweet and nutty flavor to them. in the book, gwyneth says she has even let her kids eat them for breakfast! i halved the recipe and it turned out fantastic.

lalo’s famous cookies

4 cups barley flour

3 cups raw whole almonds crushed in a food processor (20-30 seconds)

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1 cup canola oil

1 cup maple syrup

your favorite jam

preheat the oven to 350 degrees. combine all the ingredients except for the jam together in a large bowl with a wooden spoon. Form into tablespoonful balls and space them evenly on 2 cookie sheets. using your index finger, make an indent in each cookie. fill each indent with a small spoonful of jam. bake until cookies are evenly browned, about 20 minutes (ovens differ, i had to bake mine about 30). let cool before eating. delish…