Cranberry Sweet Potato Bread

I’m not much into baking, but I sure do love whipping up a fresh and tasty tea bread. I also love cooking with cranberries. Fresh, not canned. Of course. When fresh cranberries start appearing in the produce section of the grocery store, I buy out the store and stock up my freezer. Yep, you can freeze cranberries for up to six months, although I have been known to keep them in the freezer for up to a year, and they haven’t killed me yet.

I found this recipe with fresh cranberries and sweet potatoes so many years ago that the cookbook is literally falling apart. Although I loved the bread, I was totally bummed out by the amount of sugar in the recipe. Sweet potatoes (or yams) are certainly sweet enough on their own.

So, I took out my handy dandy Ninja knives and started cutting the back on the sugar, added a few other secret ingredients (okay, they won’t be a secret anymore) to make this far more light, healthy, and delicious. The original recipe called for 1 1/3 cups sugar. Since I always doubled the recipe, that would mean a whopping total of 2 2/3 cups sugar!Yikes!

Not only did I double the recipe, I managed to cut the sugar down to 1/3 cup, and I get rave reviews from everyone I share this bread with. There is nothing more satisfying than breaking bread with friends, unless it’s the bread itself.

I even tried substituting rice flour as well as other types of flour such as quinoa and coconut. It gives a nice, nutty flavor and texture to the bread, but I would be careful. I typically combine it with whole wheat flour, or else your bread will turn out too dry. I double the recipe, and since I always have fresh cranberries in the freezer, my husband and I enjoy this fabulous Cranberry Sweet Potato Bread all year long.

2 cups mashed cooked sweet potatoes (baked or boiled works)

4 large eggs, slightly beaten

3 cups flour

2/3 cup canola oil

1/3 cup brown sugar

2 tsp vanilla extract,

2 TBS ground cinnamon

2 TBS allspice

2 tsp baking soda

2 cups chopped cranberries (I put them in the food processor. Even though I do love chopping things to pieces, it’s a lot faster, even though it’s not as gratifying).

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Coat a 9x5x3 inch loaf pan with non-stick spray. In a large bowl combine eggs, sugar, yams, and vanilla. In a separate bowl combine flour, cinnamon, allspice, and baking soda. Pour yam mixture into dry mixture and mix just until moistened. Fold in cranberries. Spoon batter into pan. Bake for 1 hour or until a toothpick in center comes out clean.

Episode #45: Creating a Healthy Home

Would you like to create a healthier and cleaner environment for your family? Meet Tiffany Peterson, educator, entrepreneur, business owner and mom of three small children. Tiffany shares her personal story about deciding to find ways to eliminate toxins and harmful chemicals in her home to create a healthier environment for herself and her family.

Tiffany also talks about finding balance in your life (or not), how to stay focused on what’s most important, setting clear boundaries as well as priorities. She also shares her experience of raising a child with special needs, establishing a strong relationship and partnership with her husband, and much, much more.

Download this uplifting and positive episode to be inspired to find ways to creating healthier relationships and valuable tips to creating a healthier home as well.

https://www.facebook.com/tiffanycleanslessandplaysmore

https://www.ewg.org/

Episode #44: You Are Not Alone

Nikki Brooker is a teacher, educator, mom of three teenagers, and the founder of a non-profit called YANAM2M, which has become her soul endeavor, and an organization she is passionate about. YANAM2M came about in 2016 when, in the span of just three months, two moms living in her community took their own lives along with the lives of their young children.

In the midst of the shock and heartbreak, while the community grieved and asked how this could possibly happen, Nikki took action to find a solution to insure that this would never happen to another mom and another family again.

Download this episode to learn how Nikki created a place where moms could feel safe, accepted, supported and valued. Hear the many success stories and lives that have been changed, family bonds that have been strengthened, and lifelong friendships that have developed as a result of the great work YANAM2M provides. And learn how you can help YANAM2M, or get a similar program started in your own community.

Nikki is an incredible force of nature as well as a woman with the heart, soul, and spirit of the ninja. Please share her story with everyone, and help spread the word and the positive message of community, love, and hope for the future.

http://www.yanam2m.org/

https://www.facebook.com/yanam2m/

Episode #43: The Magic Of The Fourth Stripe

Captain Mark Hardcastle returns to The FemiNinja Project to share his insights of the magic of the fourth stripe, including how to be the captain of your own life. He describes how we can steer the direction of our life by how we choose to engage in it and how we interact with other people. Mark explains that we are all in a position in life to touch each other in a positive way through very simple gestures of kindness.

Mark also shares the secrets to conquering our fears, exercising our courage muscle, and how each one of our lives are extraordinary. He concludes with a dark and stormy night, but we will save that story for another time. Download this episode for uplifting and motivating information, and learn how to release the magic of your own fourth stripe.

Listen to Mark’s previous episode The Symphony Of Your Life.

https://www.symphonyofyourlife.com/

https://www.facebook.com/TheSymphonyOfYourLife/

https://www.linkedin.com/in/speakermarkhardcastle/

Old-Fashioned Christmas Traditions

Don’t you just love old-fashioned Christmas traditions? When I was growing up, we had a plethora of traditions in our family. Many of them were based on our Eastern European heritage, including our rich religious practices. Others were based on Santa Claus, decorations, cookies, presents, and Christmas trees. And of course, there was always an endless parade of company coming over to visit.

The visits were always planned, and my mother would prepare well in advance. She would set out extravagant trays of her home-baked cookies (which were legendary) along with appetizers, finger food, coffee and adult beverages. Visitors never popped over unexpectedly. Well almost never. Until one Christmas Eve.

My mother had already had me and my 2 older sisters bathed and ready for bed, which included putting our hair up in curlers for church on Christmas morning. Yes, we did things like that back then, and yes, it was uncomfortable. Just as she finished, she realized that she didn’t have enough hairnets, so she improvised. She opened a dresser drawer,  pulled out 3 pairs of freshly laundered panties, and put them on our heads.

My sisters and I were skeptical, but my mother seemed to think it was a great idea. She also thought it was hilarious. Besides, she assured us, no one would ever know. At that precise moment, the doorbell rang. My dad answered the door, and standing there was one of his closest friends with his wife and 3 kids. So, instead of going to bed, we had to entertain the kids, in our pajamas with curlers in our hair and panties on our heads. It was humiliating.

After a good long visit, the family finally left. As they said their good-byes and headed out the door, the oldest child said, “Mom! The Ilov’s celebrate Christmas with panties on their heads!” Our humiliation was complete.

But, from that moment on, we made it a holiday tradition. Every Christmas Eve we put panties on our heads to cover our curlers. The tradition continued after our younger sister was born, but gradually petered out by the time our youngest sister came along. By that time the 3 of us older girls were teenagers, eschewing sponge curlers for the modern day hot rollers. But the memory of panties on our heads for Christmas still lives on to this day.

So, regardless how you celebrate, I wish you a very Merry Christmas as well as a happy, healthy, and prosperous New Year full of peace, joy, love, and laughter. And panties on your head.

 

Episode #42: Vibrant Health and Healing

Dr. Carl Hudson returns to The FemiNinja Project to share more of her personal insights of self-healing, self-discovery, and life-long learning. She explains how traditional Western medicine saved her life, but alternative medical practices gave her quality of life and set her on a path of alternative health, healing, and self-awareness.

Discover how changing our mindset and the way we move can actually change the tissues of our bodies and raise our level of physical, mental, and emotional function. Also, that if we don’t put ourselves first, we have nothing to give to the ones we love and care about. Dr. Carly also talks about overcoming obstacles, self-image, belief systems, and the malleability of the human body, as well as how to unleash your inner brilliance.

Download this fascinating and information packed episode to be inspired to make small changes in your habits and patterns that will help you unleash your own inner brilliance and vibrant health. Listen to Dr. Carly’s earlier interview on The FemiNinja Project, Episode #25, A Life of Healing, to learn more about her personal journey. And make sure you check out Dr.Carly’s podcast, Healing Ground Movement.

http://www.healinggroundchiropracticcare.com/

https://www.facebook.com/HGChiro/

https://www.instagram.com/beahuddy/

Episode #41: Writing Words That Work

Words are powerful, and the ability to be able to clearly communicate your message is crucial to your business and life in general. In this episode, Jesssica Olma, the founder and owner of Scribe Syndicate explains how to write and use words that work, how to change habits that might be getting in our own way, and how to handle life’s bumps in the road.

http://scribesyndicate.com

 

 

Episode #40: Living Differently-From Marine To Mentor

Meet Tami McVay, business and lifestyle strategist dedicated to helping you find the courage, strength, and confidence you need to make your life better. Tami shares her experiences and perspective about thriving in a man’s world, building character, the resilience and tenacity of the human spirit, taking risks, and the power of adventure. With her unique background and engaging style, Tami will help you conquer your world!

https://tamimcvay.com

 https://twitter.com/TamiMcVayMentor

https://www.instagram.com/tamimcvaymentor/

https://business.facebook.com/tamimcvaymentor/?ref=py_c

Magic Mandarin Cranberry Sauce

Since the holidays are right around the corner, it’s time to start thinking about preparing our holiday meals. Which, of course, includes the inevitable side dish of cranberry sauce. And I don’t mean the canned gelatinous stuff that some of us grew up with, although that was probably the only way we would eat it. I’m talking about the real deal, homemade cranberry sauce with fresh cranberries.

When my mother stopped serving the canned stuff and started making her own, I thought it was a minor miracle. Whoever thought such magic was possible? But then I discovered how much sugar she used. Well, that explained why it tasted so good.

I pulled out my ninja knives to cut the sugar content, and after much experimentation, I came up with a recipe using those cute little mandarin oranges to sweeten things up along with fresh squeezed orange juice instead of water to cook the cranberries in. It was still a little too tart, so I added one tablespoon of Xylitol, which is my sweetener of choice. You might want to add a little more if you need to. Here’s the recipe for my Magic Mandarin Cranberry Sauce.

 

12 ounce bag of fresh cranberries

3 or 4 mandarin oranges, peeled and chopped into small pieces (See, those ninja knives do come in handy).

1 cup fresh squeezed orange juice

Xylitol to taste ( Or, you can use sugar, honey, or whatever you chose. I prefer Xylitol because I love the taste and texture, and it’s the one sweetener that doesn’t make me feel guilty).

Bring the first 3 ingredients to a boil in a saucepan. Reduce the heat and simmer for 15-20 minutes, stirring frequently. Remove from heat and slowly add your sweetener to taste. Chill before serving. Not only is this cranberry sauce great with your Thanksgiving or holiday turkey, it is fantastic spread on turkey sandwiches when you’re enjoying your leftovers and watching football. Enjoy!

Episode #39: The Golden Thread Of Life

Meet Bryn Brown, a business coach who uses heartfelt connections along with spiritual wisdom to help people turn their deepest passions into a business that feeds their soul. She shares her own personal and professional journey and life path including how to seek self-fulfillment through self-observation, and how to avoid tears in your morning coffee. Bryn also explains the golden thread (or threads) that lead to different possibilities, and how to follow the threads to find your own true path.

Download this to discover tips on finding your way, creating your own community, showing up in relationships, the delicate dance and balance of masculine and feminine energy, and much more. Bryn is a wealth of knowledge, information, and expertise!

https://www.brynbrown.com/

https://www.facebook.com/groups/streamlineyoursuccess

https://www.linkedin.com/in/brynebrown/