Coconut Oat Cookies

Date-sweetened oat cookies for a rainy morning mamatoto gathering. #Wholefoodsplantbased

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Ever come across a cookie recipe that was so easy and so good, that you made it twice in one day? And that also required that you bust out your fancy teacup to go along with the finished product?

This is your ticket. Endless variations, with whole ingredients and no refined sugar. A perfect pre- or post- run snack, and one that you won’t feel guilty bribing your child because its actually pretty healthy.

My mama-baby group was coming over this morning, and I wanted to bake up a treat that was easy on prep but would be filling and tasty for these nursing mamas. I knew I wanted to use dates as the sweetener and also incorporate oats and coconut, so a quick google search of “oat coconut date cookie” got me to this one. A whirl in the food processor and stir in the rest of the ingredients, spoon onto a baking sheet = done.

The mamas ate the first batch, so with my last bit of free time this morning before my 3-year-old came home, I whipped up a second batch. From memory. Which is saying something for a mother of two young children.

Coconut Oat Cookies

  • Servings: ~20 cookies
  • Time: 25 minutes
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print
Credit: Korena In The Kitchen

Ingredients

  • 2 eggs (or to be vegan, use 2 tbsp flaxseed + 1/4 cup water, and omit flaxseed below)
  • 10 pitted dates
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • pinch of salt
  • 1/4 cup oats
  • 3/4 cup oats
  • 1 cup shredded unsweetened coconut
  • 1/2 cup nuts or seeds (I used walnut, sunflower, and pumpkin)
  • 1/2 cup dried fruit (I used cherries)
  • 2-3 tbsp hemp seeds (optional)
  • 2 tbsp ground flaxseed (optional)
  • 2 tbsp nut butter

Directions

  1. Combine first five ingredients (eggs through 1/4 cup oats) in a food processor and whirl until smooth.
  2. Combine the rest of the ingredients in a mixing bowl. Add the puree from the food processor and stir well.
  3. Drop by spoonful onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake at 350 for 14 minutes, until browned on the edges.

African Peanut Stew

All the rain we’ve had lately means that we are out playing in puddles constantly! Almost every day, Hayden asks me “What time is Sister Rain coming today?” For a kid who loves to play in water, it has been heaven. For me, a rainy cloud days means that I want to turn on the oven to roast vegetables, bake bread, and make soup. (The heat generated by the oven warms up the house nicely, and helps dry soggy rain boots.)

A friend made us an African peanut stew the other week. It was the first time I’d had something like this, despite seeing recipes floating around for years. Once I started looking up recipes (and my friend sent the one she used), I realized just how easy and perfect this stew is for busy families. The peanut butter really is a magical secret ingredient, turning simple food into something savory and creamy. I chose to add red lentils, because they cook quickly and add a nice dose of protein.

The best part about this recipe is that you probably already have most of these ingredients in your kitchen already. Its also quite flexible, as there are a number of optional ingredients that won’t break the recipe if you don’t have them. I have noted them below. Enjoy!

African Peanut Stew

  • Servings: 4-6
  • Time: 45 mins
  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients

  • 1 onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tsp minced ginger
  • 1 cup chopped celery (optional)
  • 1 bell pepper, chopped (optional)
  • 1 cup chopped mushrooms (optional)
  • 1 28 oz can san marzano tomatoes, squeezed into small pieces (or 1 14 oz can diced tomatoes + 1.5 cup water)
  • 2 cups vegetable broth
  • 1 medium sweet potato, diced
  • 1 cup red lentils (optional – if you omit, then omit 2 cups water or broth)
  • 1.5 tsp cumin
  • 1.5 tsp dried thyme
  • 1 tbsp dried parsley (or 1/3 cup chopped fresh)
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 cups chopped leafy greens swiss chard or spinach
  • 1/2 cup peanut butter

Directions

  1. Saute onion, garlic, ginger and celery or bell pepper.
  2. After 5 minutes, add mushrooms, saute for another 3 minutes. Then add tomatoes, sweet potato, broth, red lentils, and spices.
  3. Bring to boil, then turn down and simmer for 25 min.
  4. Scoop out 1 cup of broth to combine with peanut butter, then add back in and stir.
  5. Add the greens (including fresh parsley if using), heat until wilted. Salt to taste.

Perfect Oatmeal, 2 ways

My favorite running clothes company rabbit is featuring my recipe for Perfect Oatmeal today, which my family makes almost every day. You can check it out here. (And read a great review of their gear here!)

There’s a second secret way to make perfect oatmeal, too. Have you ever heard of steel cut oats? Same grain as regular oatmeal, but instead of rolling the groat, its chopped into a few pieces. I personally much prefer the texture and stomach-filling properties of steel cut oats, but I don’t love the prep time involved. Who has 60 minutes to make oats in the morning? Exactly.

So here’s the trick. Just before you go to bed, heat up a pot of water. Once its boiling, add the steel cut oats and let cook at a rollin for 2 minutes. Turn it off, go to bed. And in the morning, give the pot a stir, heat up those oats, flavor to your liking, and eat.

Proportions per serving

1/4 cup steel cut oats

slightly less than 1 cup water

 

Raw Peach Tart

 

The good people at rabbit featured me for their FUELED FRIDAY post today! Check out my recipe for an easy, delicious and healthy Raw Peach Tart.

I was lucky enough to be part of their Kickstarter campaign this year, and received a pair of shorts and top just when I found out I was pregnant. I LOVE rabbit shorts. They are by far the most comfortable running shorts I own, and I’m still rocking them at 35 weeks pregnant! I wore them all summer long on our Cascade adventures. No chafing or digging in at weird places, and they are flattering to pretty much everyone.

En route to Cascade pass in the North Cascades. Beyond stunning!

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Not only do their clothes fit great, but rabbit is doing an amazing job building up the running community. I can’t wait to see what they’re up to next. In the meantime – go make this dessert!

Green Smoothie Bowl

We just spent 4 weeks in the Pacific Northwest road-tripping through the Cascades and the Washington/Oregon coast in our 2006 Sprinter van. I absolutely fell in love with the Cascades – green forests, lakes, shady trails, wildflowers, snow-capped mountains, rivers, and oh the wild berries! We have a propane stove and a refrigerator in the van, so we were still able to eat pretty healthy on the road. But its been nice to indulge in some smoothies since we got back – I was sorely missing my favorite way to get kale in my diet.

Peach-ginger green smoothie bowl. I did miss smoothies while we were immersed in #vanlife.

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Even more fun are smoothie bowls. I like a thick smoothie base with toppings to make it more interesting.

The key to a thick smoothie: use less liquid than you think, and gradually add some if your blender really can’t handle it.

Ginger Peach Smoothie Base

Large handful kale

1/2 cup almond milk

1/4″ nub of ginger

2 cups frozen peaches/nectarines

1/2 banana (frozen, or not)

1-2 tbsp almond butter

4 ice cubes

Shake of cinnamon (optional)

1 scoop protein powder (if desired)

Blend the kale, almond milk and ginger til no chunks of kale remain. Then add the rest of the ingredients and blend on high til its smooth but thick.

Top with whatever you like: chia or hemp seeds, sliced almonds, coconut flakes, berries, sliced banana, etc.