Fluffy Oat Waffles w/ Blackberry Sauce

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Greetings!! After a very temporary culinary hiatus, I am back and ready to share more recipes just in time for the cold weather and upcoming holiday season ahead. I will be posting some of my favorite healthy and comfort classic foods to give everyone some ideas on what to cook for all of your holiday parties these next couple of months. That’s right, Culinary Jam is back (again), and this time with a silver tray, tall glass of OJ, and breakfast in bed!! Who doesn’t love a fluffy home-made stack of waffles dripping with maple syrup when it’s chilly out? In this recipe, I’ve made a healthy, gluten-free, sugar-free version of my beloved waffle, to satisfy my craving for these gut-bombs for breakfast but with out the gut-bombing-ness of all that gluten and sugar. And the best part is they taste soooo good, you would have no idea that they are good for you. Think of it as a “safety meal” you can enjoy without the guilt so that when you DO chow down on all of those holiday treats, you won’t feel quite so much like a tubby Santa.

(Serves 4/ Difficulty: Easy)

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One-Pot Monday presents: Mama D’s Mushroom Risotto

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This risotto is one of my favorite one-pot meals to make, because it’s SO EASY, and you would never guess that there weren’t a million steps involved to create such flavors.  Whenever I go out to a new fancy restaurant and spot a mushroom risotto dish on the menu, I always have to compare it to my mom’s version. And, usually, it never really matches her simple, yet satisfying version. It can very well serve as a stand-alone meal with a little simple side salad, or it’s a really great side dish to serve with a main course. One thing to keep in mind when you are cooking with very few ingredients is that the ingredients have to speak for themselves and really shine, so the fresher and more high quality the ingredients, the better your end product will be! That being said, I’ve even brought this dish to a Pot Luck or two, and gotten rave reviews…Mama D really nailed it with this one!

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Gorgeous & Delicious: Gluten-Free, Sugar-Free Chocolate Peanut Butter Bars

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I know, I know… it’s been waaay to long since I’ve blogged any recipes. The truth is, Andy and I had a magical, wonderful whirlwind wedding weekend. (Try saying that three times fast).  We had family and friends fly in from all over the world to celebrate. The whole weekend was brimming with such a positive, happy energy, it’s carried over to real life. Yay!! But now, it’s back to the blog, and this week, I wanted to post something special. After a week of literally eating giant slices of wedding cake multiple times a day, I knew it was time to put down the cake fork and get back on the healthy track. I’m not one to normally take notice of the negative effects of too much sugar and gluten, but after eating so much cake, my body has definitely revolted, leaving me feeling ill and craving all things nutritious and healthful. But who’s to say healthy can’t still be yummy and sweet-tooth satisfying? After doing quite a bit of research online, I came up with my own perfect recipe for a no-bake, gluten free, chocolate peanut butter dessert that’s so decadent you would NEVER guess that its-SURPRISE!!!- healthy!! The bananas work really well as a binding ingredient for the bottom “dough” base, and are a perfect, creamy swap to butter. I didn’t go the extra step and buy vegan chocolate, but if you substitute vegan chocolate for the chocolate here, you will have a delicious VEGAN dessert as well! Just make sure to refrigerate at least 6 hours, but preferably overnight, so that it will firm up. Store in the fridge in an airtight container.  You can cut them into large, desert-style pieces, or little tiny bite-sized snackable squares . However you slice them, I promise you will LUURVE them! Man it feels good to be back in the kitchen….

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