The Easy Dinner Cookbook

No-fuss recipes and family-friendly meals for the busy lifestyle. I mean who doesn’t want that?! I’m super excited to share with you the release of my new cookbook and can I just tell you it is jam packed with easy, quick recipes that are all mostly 30 minute meals. There is also a whole chapter dedicated to slow cooker and pressure cooker recipes and these alone are worth the book!

I hope you love it as much as I do. I’ve always want to use my skill set as a chef, business woman and super busy momma of soon to be 3 kiddos to help make dinner, meals in general and cooking a less daunting task. These are recipes that I use daily in my own home to make it all happen for my own families busy lifestyle and schedule that taste good (otherwise it is not sustainable), are healthy, quick to make and ones that the whole family enjoy!

The cookbook goes on PREORDER now and fully launches out MARCH 31st so grab your copy now at the link provided right here:

https://amzn.to/2ONIu2l

If you love it too, please review it on Amazon so other people can discover why your enjoying it and how it is making your life easier. I also want to know and to help others know what recipes you are absolutely loving! Favorites of mine are the Cauliflower Salad with Cranberries & Almonds, Deviled Egg Salad, Mexican-Style Baked Eggs with Tortillas, White Tortilla Pizzas, Butter Bean Stew, Sheet Pan Quesadillas, Honey Mustard Glazed Sheet Pan Chicken, Cold Chickpea Salad with Sliced Pita, Pressure Cooker Smoked Paprika Chicken, Sheet Pan Sausage Dinner, Easy Vegetarian Taco Bowls, Slow Cooker Coconut Chicken and so much more!!

I always want to be of service to helping people come together around a meal. I think this pause even if for just 20 minutes is so important. The act of making each other a priority and connecting even if just briefly to enjoy a meal together is so important. I really believe in our current on the go culture, we need this time so much right now.

Gluten Free Vegan Dark Chocolate Energy Bliss Bars

GLUTEN FREE VEGAN DARK CHOCOLATE ENERGY BLISS BARS

There are a lot of energy bars, fitness bars, on the go bars, you name it there are lots of bars lol!  I personally like to make my own because I know what is going into them.  It also allows you to control the sugar, sodium levels and keep them simple without any added preservatives or extra ingredients we really don’t need as they aren’t great for our gut health either.

I think what I really love about these most though is how easy they are to do plus the versatility.  The nut butter can be switched to peanut butter, sunflower butter, almond butter just to name a few and they can be topped with goji berries, crushed nuts or whatever you fancy.  These are really nice as an afternoon pick me up with a big cup of tea or as a dessert.  You can also cut them into any size you like.  If you want, they can be cut into smaller individual bite size bars or a bit larger for more granola bar size.  You get to choose so that’s the fun part!  I hope you enjoy them as much as I do for sure.  I really love the extra crunch of the cacao nibs in these and they give you a little subtle energy boost too!  We could all use a little of that!

TOOLS:

Square baking pan 9 by 9

Parchment Paper

Measuring Spoons

Measuring Cups

Food Processor

Spatula

Double Boiler or Two Equal Sized Small Pots

Sharp Knife

INGREDIENTS:

Bottom Crust:

12 dates pitted deglet or medjool dates 

1/2 cup hot water for soaking dates 

2 cups gluten free oatmeal (I like Qia oatmeal)

Pinch of sea salt

2 tbs cacao nibs 

2 tbs flax seeds (optional)

1/2 cup cashew butter or nut butter of your choice 

1 tsp real vanilla extract 

3 tbs reserved date water

Second Layer:

2/3 cup cashew butter or nut butter of your choice 

2 tbs cacao nibs (optional) for added crunch

Top Layer for chocolate coating:

1 cup dark chocolate chips 

1 tbs coconut oil 

Pinch of sea salt (optional)

2 tbs cacao nibs (optional)

METHOD:

Take a small bowl and add pitted dates then add hot water.  Set aside and let soak for 10 minutes.  While the dates are soaking, take your food processor and add oatmeal, sea salt cocoa nibs, flax seeds, cashew butter and vanilla extract.  Now remove dates from the water, making sure to save the date water.  Add the softened pitted dates.  Pulse the food processor till the ingredients become a sticky dough then add the reserved date water and continue to pulse a little more till all the ingredients are fully combined and a nice dough has formed.  Take your baking pan and line with parchment paper, then use a spatula and add dough.  Use your spatula first, then your hands by pressing to evenly distribute the dough thoroughly though the pan making approximately a 1 inch bottom.

Once you have the bottom layer down, now use a spatula and smooth the second nut butter layer over the dough.  You can sprinkle as well with cacao nibs for extra crunch.  Then set aside briefly while you make the top chocolate layer.

Take a double boiler or two equal sized pots and place them inside of each other.  Fill the bottom pot with water then place the second pot on top.  Add the dark chocolate chips along with the coconut oil then place your heat on your stove top to medium.  Chocolate will begin to melt.  Once fully melted, use a spatula once again and pour over the nut butter layer.  Evenly smooth the chocolate over the top till fully covered.  Sprinkle with another layer of cacao nibs and a touch of sea salt to add extra flavor and crunch.  It is optional but makes this really special.  Then place in the freezer for at least one hour till the bars are firm and chocolate is solid.

Once firm, take a very sharp knife and cut into indivual bars.  These can be stored in an airtight glass container like a Pyrex in your refrigator for up to 7 days or some like to keep these in the freezer.  Yum!

For more easy, delicious recipes like this, my new cookbook Empowerful can be ordered at the below link:

https://www.amazon.com/EmPowerful-Finding-Empowerment-Everyday-Connection/dp/1978475969/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1535032588&sr=1-1&keywords=Empowerful+book

If you enjoy my recipes, I would love to see your pictures and creations! Please tag me and your favorite recipes on social media on Facebook at Chef Emery or on Instagram @chef_emery !

Oxoxoxo Chef Emery

Hi there! The photos of this recipe and content above are copyright protected.

Please do not use my photos without prior written permission. Please do not copy this recipe and share it on your own site. If you wish to tell people about this recipe, please provide a link back to the recipe here on my blog rather than copying the recipe. If you make significant changes to a recipe, you are welcome to rewrite it in your own unique words and provide a link back here for credit. Thank you!

Gluten Free Blueberry Cornmeal Oatmeal Crunch Muffins

Gluten Free Blueberry Cornmeal Oatmeal Crunch Muffins 

Up here in Maine, we wait all year for the bounty of local maine blueberry season.  We literally freeze them by the boat loads to stock up for winter so we can enjoy these delicious berries all season long.  If your not familiar with these special berries, they are incredibly small and delicate yet so sweet and flavorful.  My daughter especially likes to eat them in the morning on their own.  I personally love them in smoothies, tarts, breads, salads and you guessed it muffins!

This muffin recipe is so quick, easy and will not disappoint!  The sunflower seeds add this extra fabulous crunch and they are bursting with blueberry flavor.  I particularly love them as a snack on the go or for breakfast and they are next level toasted in your toaster oven with a touch of cultured grass fed butter https://www.organicvalley.coop

or smear of almond or cashew butter https://onceagainnutbutter.com

Serves 4-6 ( Makes 1 dozen muffins)

Equipment:

A One Dozen Muffin Tin

Two Large Mixing Bowl

One Small Mixing Bowl

Measuring Cups

Measuring Spoons

A Wooden Spoon or Fork for Mixing

The Method:

3 eggs

3 tbs extra virgin olive oil

Pinch of sea salt

1 tsp vanilla extract @simpleorganicfoods

3 tbs unsweetened coconut yogurt @so_delicious http://sodeliciousdairyfree.com

1/2 cup real maple syrup

2 cups gluten free oats (I love qia by @naturespathorganic ) https://www.naturespath.com/en-us/

1 tsp Ceylon cinnamon

1 tsp baking powder

1 cup cornmeal #nongmo

2 cups wild Maine blueberries

1/2 cup raw shelled sunflower seeds (optional)

1 tbs coconut oil for greasing muffin tin

Take a large bowl and add eggs, olive oil, sea salt, vanilla extract, coconut yogurt, and maple syrup. Whisk well then set aside briefly. Take a small bowl and add oatmeal, cinnamon, baking powder, cornmeal and toss well with a fork then add to wet mixture combining well.  Now add blueberries and sunflower seeds (if using). Grease a one dozen muffin tin and add batter. Bake at 350 for 35-40 minutes till golden brown. Remove and cool. Serve with cultured butter, nut butter or simply on its own.  I love to cut one in half and reheat in my toaster oven for a grilled effect!

Tag your recipes #chefemery and for more great recipes like this, order my new cookbook “Empowerful” available now at Amazon and Amazon books.

Order here:

https://www.amazon.com/EmPowerful-Finding-Empowerment-Everyday-Connection/dp/1978475969/ref=sr_1_cc_1?s=aps&ie=UTF8&qid=1533423204&sr=1-1-catcorr&keywords=empowerful+cookbook

Enjoy from my kitchen to yours!!  Please follow me on instagram at chef_emery and if you loved this recipe please share it on facebook and instagram.

oxoxo

Chef Emery

Organic Turkey Meatballs in Marinara Sauce

There is a reason why the saying “April showers brings May flowers” exists and we have definitely been experiencing that except I don’t think Mother Nature meant snow ha!  It has been cold and dreary so I’ve been taking to heart Mick Jagger’s “you can’t always get what you want” as I hold tightly to the promise of spring in our not too distant future.

This leads me to my turkey meatball recipe as I’m still in comfort mood mode as a result of all this cooler weather.  Trust me know one is complaining in our house either as this is one of my husband’s and daughter’s absolute favorite meals of all time.  I love it too as it is incredibly versatile as the meat can be adjusted to pork or beef and this can be served over spaghetti squash to make it grain free or paleo as well as served over pasta or even used to make meatball subs!  My family especially loves it over spaghetti!  Regardless, I’ve been making this recipe for years and it is about time I share with you all.  This can be a made a day ahead too and it will just get better and better with time.  You can make your marinara from scratch if you have the time but to be honest on busy days with the kiddos, I use a jar of Rao’s marinara.  It honestly is so delicious and no body will ever know!

 

Ground Turkey Meatballs

1 tbs extra virgin olive oil

1 small onion peeled and minced

3 cloves fresh garlic peeled and minced

1 tsp dried oregano

1 lb ground organic turkey

1 egg

1/2 cup gluten free bread crumbs (optional)

pinch of sea salt

freshly ground black pepper

3 tbs grated parmesan reggiano

1 additional tsp dried oregano

2 additional tbs extra virgin olive oil

2  jar Rao’s marinara

Take a large skillet with a lid and add olive oil, then place the heat of your stove top to medium.  Once hot, add minced onion and cook approx. 7-8 minutes till translucent then add garlic and dried oregano and cook 2 more minutes.  Remove from heat and let rest to cool.

Take a medium size bowl and add ground turkey, egg, bread crumbs, sea salt, black pepper, parmesan reggiano, dried oregano.  Now add the cooled cooked onion, garlic and oregano mixture to the ground turkey.  Using your clean hands, combine all the ingredients fully.  Then, proceed to roll the ground turkey mixture into individual meatballs.  Once you have rolled all of your meatballs, take your skillet and add the last 2 tbs of olive oil.  Bring your heat to medium and once hot, add the meatballs.  Cook approx. 5 minutes then using a spatula or tongs, flip the meatballs to the other side and cook an additional 5 minutes (meatballs should be golden brown on each side).  Now add both jars of marinara sauce (make sure to add a little water (approx. 1/2 cup) to the jars to get all the sauce out and add to the pot as well.  Bring the heat of your stove top up to high heat very briefly till the sauce comes to a quick boil, then immediately reduce to low and place the top on your pot.  Cook approx. 20-25 minutes on low to finish cooking the meatballs and allow all the flavors to come together.  Serve the meatballs over pasta, over spaghetti squash or I have made meatball subs with this recipe as well.  The options are endless and don’t forget to add copious amounts of sprinkled parmesan reggiano.  Any way you serve this, it’s absolutely delicious and your family will thank you.

Enjoy and don’t forget to tag me @chef_emery on Instagram! Oxoxox

All my love from my kitchen to yours!

Chef Emery

https://www.chefemery.com

https://www.raos.com/product/marinara-sauce/

 

Organic Tomato Bolognese


People often say to me that looks really delicious but I don’t have the time to cook like that or that will take me too long to make.  I truly believe that with a little organization, meal prep and consistency, we can all get there.  Trust me, as a very busy business owner, professional chef and managing two children’s very busy schedules, I get that it can be absolutely overwhelming.  I feel overwhelmed myself but I have specific daily tools that have really helped me such as a weekly schedule of what’s happening in my calendar, a free grocery app on my phone that helps me organize my weekly grocery shop list and then some meal planning.  I set one day out of the week to grocery shop and vaguely plan menu “ideas” and then I just commit to it.  There are some weeks I don’t even have time to plan menu ideas but because my fridge is organized and stocked with fresh real food, there is always something to quickly assemble and get on the table.

My hope is that these tips can help you get there too because when we take the time to sit down for a meal, slow down, connect with our family and make real food a priority everything just gets better.  The difference is startling and leaves me with more mental and physical energy for my job, mothering as well as for fitness.  We can all get there, it just requires a little focus and discipline.

Now onto this delicious easy recipe!!  This is super easy to do and especially delicious this time of year because it’s tomato season!!  My kids literally squeal over this and ask for it at least one a week.  It also can be made in larger batches and frozen so that you can get several meals out of it.  I love the versatility of it as it can accommodate varying diets.  For example,  I always put the kids over organic gluten free tinkyada pasta penne or spaghetti but sometimes for myself I will put this over sautéed seasonal zucchini ( another great way to use up that overloading seasonal produce this time of year ). Whatever way you like it, this is super easy to do and will get dinner on the table fast.  This can also be adapted to be vegetarian/vegan by simply omitting the meat which would be delicious as well.

 

Organic Tomato Bolognese

2 cans organic crushed tomatoes 28.2 oz or 9 large fresh organic seasonal tomatoes washed and cored

1 organic white onion washed, peeled and diced

2 cloves organic fresh garlic peeled and minced

2 organic dried bay leaves

1 tsp organic dried oregano

1 tsp organic dried basil or fresh basil can be used as well

1 tsp dried organic red pepper flakes ( optional ) sometimes I omitt this for kids as it makes the sauce slightly spicy

1 lb organic grass fed ground beef or ground turkey can be used

2 tbs organic olive oil

1 tsp sea salt

freshly ground black pepper

2 tbs organic tomato paste

2 cups of water ( I generally rinse the cans of crushed tomatoes  and then add the water to the sauce so there is zero waste ) ** you will need to add the water though if using fresh tomatoes

 

If using fresh tomatoes, you will need a high speed blender.  Wash and core the tomatoes then slice with a knife into smaller pieces.  Add to your blender until they are completely crushed.  Set aside briefly.

Take a large stock pot and add olive oil then place the heat on your stove top to medium.  Once hot, add oregano, basil, red pepper flakes and minced onion.  Cook approx. 8 minutes till onions are translucent then add garlic.  Cook another 2 minutes sautéing quickly so the garlic does not burn.  Now add ground beef or ground turkey and season with sea salt and black pepper and continue to cook approx. 8-10 minutes till the meat is fully cooked.  Now add freshly crushed tomatoes or the two cans of crushed tomatoes, bay leaves along with the tomato paste.  Then add water and increase the heat on your stove top to high and bring the sauce to a quick boil stirring frequently.  Once the sauce comes to a boil, reduce immediately to a low heat and let simmer with the top off the pot for approx. 30 minutes.  The liquid or volume of the sauce will reduce and thicken which is what you want.  Your sauce is ready!

The sauce can be served immediately or placed in airtight containers and be frozen once cooled for future use.  Optimally, this sauce gets better and better as the flavors come together so it can be made a day ahead then served the next day.  It is still fabulous the day of though and especially delicious with copious amounts of Parmesan Reggiano.    Serve over your favorite pasta or zucchini zoodles and dinner is served!

Xoxo -Chef Emery

Please note: The photos of this recipe and content above are copyright protected.

Please do not use my photos without prior written permission. Please do not copy this recipe and share it on your own site. If you wish to tell people about this recipe, please provide a link back to the recipe here on my blog rather than copying the recipe. If you make significant changes to a recipe, you are welcome to rewrite it in your own unique words and provide a link back here for credit. Thank you!❤️