Lavender Rosemary Butter Cookies

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Last summer my mother and I braved the tiny, windy roads of Southern France, frequently getting lost, but enjoying mountainside towns, local artisans, and colorful farmers markets.  At one point, we pulled our car off the side of the road to visit a farmer’s lavender stand, which turned out to be his old farm house.  He had buckets of dried lavender and fresh lavender soaps.  As I conversed with him in French, I discovered that he and his father had been farming their whole lives.  We spoke of the traditional ways of extracting oils and how the countryside turns bright purple in the summer during lavender harvest.  He gave us a huge bag of bright red and juicy cherries to munch on the drive home.

Enjoy this buttery cookies or as the French would say les biscuits!

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Ingredients

  • 1 cup almond flour
  • 2 T coconut flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 8 T butter, softened
  • 1 T maple syrup
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 T dried lavender
  • 1 T fresh rosemary, finely chopped
  • Raw honey, optional

Directions

  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • In a small mixing bowl toss together flours, baking soda, and chopped rosemary.
  • Using the back of a wooden spoon (or mortar and pestle) gently crush the lavender to release the oils.  Add this to the dry mixture.
  • Whip butter and maple syrup. Fold in flour and mix until the dough comes together.
  • Shape dough into a log shape and wrap in waxed paper. Refrigerate for 1 hour.
  • Unwrap dough and slice into 1/2 inch round cookies.
  • Bake for 10 minutes.
  • While the cookies are still warm, brush with raw honey if desiring something slightly sweeter.IMG_0013

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Spring Zucchini Fritters

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La porte verte—oh I dream of the day my front door is painted green! As I traveled in Europe last summer, my camera quickly filled up with pictures of old and modern, small and grand, weathered and fresh, green doors.  While reminiscing of last summer’s travels —tastes of Europe’s beautiful farmer’s markets and exploring old cobblestone streets—I was inspired to make these spring green zucchini fritters.

Hues of green fill our home from our breakfast dishes to basil plants and seem to color every meal.  Green is a color full of life and bountiful at the local market in this current hot season.  I picked up some beautiful deep green zucchini the other day and as they got lost in my refrigerator, the recently discovered squashes are now transformed into buttery fritters!

Combining vegetables with a source of protein and fat—almond flour, eggs, parmesan, and creme fraiche—creates a light yet complete meal for a hot day!

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Spring Zucchini Fritters

  • 2 large zucchini squash, shredded
  • 2 green onions, chopped
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup parmesan cheese, shredded
  • 1/2 cup almond flour
  • 1 tablespoon dijon mustard
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
  • dash of paprika
  • fresh ground pepper

butter or ghee

cultured creme fraiche or cultured sour cream

Directions

  • Grate zucchini and place in a bowl.  Using a wooden spoon, gently press down on zucchini to remove excess water and drain—zucchini squash is high in water content, which will make fritters soggy.
  • Add all other ingredients and gently toss together.
  • Heat a frying pan over medium to high heat.
  • Melt a pad of butter or ghee and drop a scoop of zucchini batter.  Batter should immediately sizzle in hot pan.
  • Heat for 2-3 minutes until edges are bubbling and flip to cook the other side.
  • Pan should cook about 4 fritters at a time.  Repeat until all batter is used.
  • Serve with a dollop of creme fraiche.

Rosemary Bacon Eggs and Grass-fed Meat

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Its springtime, so cooking with herbs is always a must! This simple egg dish was inspired by the famous Hotel Sacher in Salzburg, Austria.  The hotel first opened in 1876 in Vienna and has been the rendez-vous location for foreign dignitaries and artisans throughout the years.  My mom and I toured Europe this past summer and fell in love with the Austria’s rich history, beautiful gardens, majestic mountains, and scrumptious food!  We enjoyed a late morning brunch at the classic hotel famous for their chocolate “Sacher torte.” They even have a boutique that just sells and ships the fancy chocolate cake!

Breakfast in Austria is bountiful and filled with hard cheeses, meats, muesli, fresh fruit and hot coffee.  Their coffee always comes in the cutest mini teapots with steamed milk!  On the menu was rosemary infused bacon, which we ordered and turned out to be a crispy, salty perfection!  This is my Austrian inspired creation for a delicious and satisfying breakfast.

Ingredients

  • butter
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 slices cooked grass-fed bacon, beef or pork
  • 1 tsp fresh rosemary
  • mixed spring greens to garnish

Directions

  • Melt a pad of butter in a heated pan.
  • Chop the pre-cooked bacon and sauté with fresh rosemary.
  • Divide the bacon mix into 2 small groupings.
  • Crack an egg over the bacon and rosemary.
  • Flip the eggs and serve over medium.  Garnish with a fresh, spring greens simple salad.

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Grass-fed Meat and Your Health! 

Meat from pasture raised, grass-fed animals is rich in Omega 3 essential fatty acids, which are anti-inflammatory, cancer fighting and muscle building nutrients.  Cattle and other grazing animals were designed to feed off fresh grasses and shrubs that grow in the wild, rather than be confined to slaughter houses and feed pens.  Cows and ruminants have multiple stomachs designed to digest insoluble fiber in the form of grass, and leafy green plants.

Beef and pork from pasture raised animals contains the proper ratio of Omega 3 and 6 essential fatty acids.  The ratio of 3:6 is necessary for our body to inflame and anti-inflame to keep our heart healthy, muscles flexible, and immune system responsive.

Conventional, cheep, and poorly raised meat is full of toxins from pesticide sprayed grains to synthetic growth hormones.  Toxins naturally accumulate in the fatty tissue, thus quality of meat is vital!

At the end of the day, you are what you eat—choose quality over quantity!

US Wellness Meats is a great source to purchase quality grass-fed, pastured meat.  They even ship for free! Their bacon, beef and pork is thick and delicious.