Great food was the only way that I was able to stay sane during the eat local challenge. I discovered that finding and experimenting with new recipes kept my diet interesting and I was less likely to get bored with certain foods. I have a passion for cooking and using natural ingredients in healthy recipes which was very fitting for this challenge. I frequently browse food blogs for inspiration and the following are recipes that I found and adapted to only include local ingredients.
Maple Apple Yogurt Cake (adapted from Chocolate and Zucchini)
I love this recipe! I made it twice during my eat local week and used a muffin pan so that it could be a portable snack. It was perfect for a quick breakfast or a study snack. When I made it for snacking purposes, I decreased the maple syrup and increased the yogurt to make it more of a bread instead of a dessert. I also added local wheat bran to the mix and omitted the baking soda and powder so that it would be truly local.
- 3/4 cup plain greek yogurt (I used Green Mountain Creamery’s non-fat)
- 3/4 cup maple syrup (I prefer grade B)
- 2 VT eggs
- 1/3 cup sunflower oil
- 2 cups minus 2 Tbs whole wheat pastry flour
- 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- pinch of salt
- 1 large apple (I prefer cortland or empire)
Preheat oven to 360°F and grease a 10 inch cake pan. Thinly slice the apple and set aside. In a mixing bowl, combine yogurt, maple syrup, eggs, and sunflower oil. In another bowl mix together flour, salt, baking powder, and baking soda. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix until just combined. Pour the batter into the cake pan and delicately arrange the apple slices on top. As a final touch, drizzle some extra maple syrup over top. Pop into the oven and bake for 40 minutes, or until golden brown and an inserted toothpick comes out clean.
Spinach Mushroom Frittata (adapted from bell’alimento)
I only cooked this once but it was excellent. I added fresh parsley which tasted wonderful with the sharp cheddar. My roommates and I had it for breakfast one day and they were begging me to cook it again. We scarfed it down before I was able to take a picture but it looked similar to the one pictured above. This recipe is very versatile and you can choose your favorite veggies and cheese to make it your own.
- 8 VT eggs
- 2 Tbs milk
- 1 Tbs sunflower oil
- 1/2 onion, minced
- 1 cup fresh spinach
- 6 oz button mushrooms (any local variety is fine)
- 1/4 cup Shelburne Farms cheddar
Preheat the oven to 350. Crack eggs into bowl and whisk in milk and cheddar. Season with herbs of choice and set aside. Put sunflower oil in a cast iron pan and saute the onion for 2 minutes on medium heat, stirring frequently. Turn heat to low and add mushrooms to cook until the juices are released. Then add spinach and cook until it wilts. Add the egg mixture to the cast iron pan and continue to cook until the sides begin to set. Then put the cast iron pan in the oven and cook for approx. 15 minutes or until eggs are firm.
Apple Cinnamon Pancakes (adapted from smitten kitchen)
Who doesn’t love pancakes? I ate these frequently for breakfast and I still make them. They are really healthy and are a breeze to put together. In the original recipe, the author uses sour cream but I substituted local greek yogurt. Because these pancakes are packed with protein and high in fiber, they are a great way to kick-start your day. In addition, because of my strict definition of local, I omitted the baking soda when I made them.
Ingredients: (makes eight 5-inch pancakes)
- 7 tablespoons whole wheat pastry flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/ 4 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup non-fat greek yogurt
- 2 large eggs
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/2 apple, sliced
- Maple Syrup
Mix dry ingredients together. Add greek yogurt and mix until just combined. In a separate bowl, whisk eggs. Mix the eggs into the batter until just combined. If you want chopped apple in the pancakes, add them to the batter. Alternatively, you can saute the apples with cinnamon to put on top of the pancakes. Heat a nonstick skillet over medium heat. Pour desired amount of batter into skillet and cook for about 2 minutes on each side. Serve with maple syrup and sautéed apples if desired.