Well tomorrow is St. Patrick’s Day. What does that mean around my household? Mom gets a little cooky 🙂
Hey, I think I have mentioned my love to go overboard with holidays. Remember I sent my husband heart shaped sandwiches for Valentine’s Day in his lunch?!!
St. Patrick’s Day means green food and shamrocks and rainbows and traditional Irish fare. I grew up on Corned Beef and Cabbage and truthfully was never a big fan, so I steer clear of the more traditional fare and get a little crafty with my food. And I go beyond green food coloring!! I truly want to avoid food coloring and still keep a festive theme.
Green food is easier to come by than you may think. There is green grapes, kiwi, limes, avocados, honeydew melon, spinach, kale, broccoli, peas, edamame…just to name a few. And once you introduce the rainbow as St. Patrick’s Day fare, you open up so many more opportunities to make a festive treat.
So I am sharing with you my game plan for eating tomorrow. Please steal an idea or three to make your day a bit more special and fun.
For breakfast I am serving green eggs with shamrock toast and green grapes. Shamrock toast is just my whole wheat bread toasted and then cut into shamrocks with a cookie cutter (TIP: if you don’t have a shamrock cookie cutter, use 3 hearts arranged as a clover.) I eat all the scraps—lucky Mommy!!
For our morning snack we are keeping it simple with some pistachios. Yummy!! These are my daughter’s favorite nuts and I know she will think of them as a special treat. Ah, I cherish that they still find small things so pleasurable!!
Lunch time!! The plan is to have raw sugar snap peas, celery and cucumbers with Ellie Krieger’s edamame hummus. To go along with this delightful treat, we will have Greek yogurt topped with sliced kiwi. I am also serving an English muffin pizza that has been topped with pesto and cheese.
For our after school snack (yes, we snack several times a day–more on why that is so crucial for my family at another time–but it is good for everyone to keep metabolism up and running and blood sugar stable!!) we are having my favorite green smoothie.
The smoothie is simple. Throw 2 bananas, 4 cups chopped kale or spinach, 1/2 cup coconut milk, and 1 cup orange juice or pineapple juice into blender and thoroughly blend until all the leafy greens are nice and smooth. This makes 2 large or 4 smaller servings.
There are endless options for dinner.
You can do traditional corned beef and cabbage if you are into that or have a simple pasta tossed with pesto and a spinach salad. This year we are sampling Family Fresh’s Avocado Chicken Salad. The only difference I am making is to use all Greek Yogurt and no mayo, just because that is what I have in my kitchen right now 🙂 And I am serving it on my whole wheat bread.
We are having peas with the sandwiches and saving room for a sweet treat: Mint Chocolate Brownie Bites–YUMMY!!
I have sampled several for you, as did my husband. And they are delicious!! My husband couldn’t even detect that I used healthier ingredients and less sugar than the average brownie or cookie would normally contain.
But don’t get me wrong, these are a treat and meant to be enjoyed on occasion. In my opinion, that would mean once a day instead of at all meals……..ha!!
These cookies are moist and soft (much more like a brownie than a cookie in my opinion) and have a very intense chocolate flavor highlighted with the festive mint flavor for St. Patrick’s Day (or perfect for Christmas).
Chocolate and mint are a combination made in heaven. Take one bite and I think you will agree.
- ¼ cup unsalted butter, softened
- ¼ cup nonfat, plain Greek yogurt
- ⅔ cup sugar
- 1 egg, room temperature
- ¼ tsp mint extract
- 1¼ cup white whole wheat flour
- ⅓ cup dark cocoa powder (or regular)
- ¼ tsp salt
- ½ tsp baking powder
- ½ tsp baking soda
- ⅓ cup bittersweet or dark chocolate chips
- 4 TBS powdered sugar
- 1 tsp water
- Preheat oven to 350.
- Cream butter, yogurt and sugar together until very creamy.
- Add egg and mint extract and beat until pale and smooth, about 2-3 minutes.
- Combine flour with salt, baking powder, baking soda, and cocoa powder. Slowly mix into the wet ingredients. Stir in the chocolate chips gently.
- Scoop about ½ tablespoon of batter onto cookie sheet, leaving 1 inch between brownie bites (I use a small cookie scoop.)
- Bake for 6-8 minutes until batter is set. Cool slightly on tray and then cool completely on wire rack.
- Once cookies are cooled, mix the powdered sugar with the water and a the tiniest drops of peppermint extract (VERY potent stuff) and drizzle over brownie bites while still on cooling rack. This step is not necessary but dresses up these little bites.
For this recipe I recommend: