Nontraditional Banana Cheesecake

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First of all, before I start getting angry hate mail from the worlds biggest cheesecake lovers, this is definitely not a traditional cheesecake (it is better, but that is only my opinion!) Instead of graham crackers as the base, it has banana cake. Instead of a thick and heavy cream cheese filling, it is a light and airy whip cream/cream cheese topping.

Ok, now that we have got that out of the way, let me tell you how amazing this cake is! It is one of my go to’s for pot lucks, baby showers and holidays. I just made it last weekend for Easter and it was gone within minutes! What I love about this recipe is how easy it is. Usually desserts this good are hard to make, but this is the exception. Unfortunately, it isn’t very healthy (which would make it the world’s best cake ever) but it has fruit, so that makes me feel less guilty about having two pieces…..or three! To be honest, I am actually eating it as I write this!

Nontraditional Banana Cheesecake Recipe

Makes 9×13 cake pan. If you are looking for an amazing non stick option for your cakes and don’t want to spend a lot of money (what can I say, I am thrifty), check out these amazing non stick pans on Amazon. You get 2 pans for only $14.99. I have never had anything stick on these bad boys!

Banana Cake Base

Cheesecake topping

Pre-heat over to 325 and grease 9×13 cake pan. Mix sugar, oil, eggs and banana in one bowl and flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt in another. Mix wet and dry ingredients enough to combine, but be careful of over stirring as this will make a heavier cake. Keeping the mixing to a minimum will give you a much fluffier and lighter base. Bake cake for 30-35 minutes, checking with a toothpick in the middle. Once done, put in fridge to cool while making the topping.

Top make the delicious and fluffy topping, use a stand mixer to make whip cream by combining the packages, milk and vanilla. Whip until stiff peaks form. In separate bowl, mix cream cheese, icing sugar and vanilla until completely incorporated. Mix the cream cheese and whip cream together. Now try now to eat it by the spoonful….I dare you!

When the cake is completely cool, top with cream topping and sprinkle with walnuts.

I hope you enjoy this cake as much as I do 🙂

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Easy Pineapple Salsa

So yesterday I was feeling like Autumn was just around the corner and today it is hot as hell here in the sunny south of Niagara! You just never know what the weather will hold this summer! This is the strangest season ever!

So I have been craving pineapple lately and bought a nice juicy one on sale (yay for saving money!). After eating to my hearts desire, I had some left over. My brain immediately started searching the recipe index I keep stored in my head and pulled out a recipe for Pineapple salsa!


I haven’t made it in several years and for the life of me, I cannot figure out why! It isn’t even much of a recipe it is that easy and it is so delicious with so many things!

Use pineapple salsa for chicken, fish, pork chops, sausage, with tortilla chips, fish tacos, etc, etc! Again I start wondering why I haven’t made it in so long!


You won’t even need to write the recipe down (unless you have a bad memory, then I would suggest saving this post!)

EASY PINEAPPLE SALSA

  1. Pineapple
  2. Green pepper
  3. Jalapeño
  4. Onion
  5. Tomato
  6. Salt and pepper

I’m not even going to suggest ingredient amounts because I have never used measurements and have never made a bad salsa! You can even throw in some cilantro (which I hate more than anything in this world, so I never use it.)


Please try this recipe and let me know how it turned out and what you used it with. I have even been known to eat with with a spoon, so no judgement if that is the choice you decide to make 😁

Oatmeal Bars (Gluten/Dairy Free)

I know it is not even mid August yet but it is already starting to feel like fall around here. The winds have changed and the need to bake begins!

I have been torn however since I have not done much baking since going gluten free. Baking without flour (I refuse to buy anything labeled “gluten free”) seems tricky!

So I started playing around with oats! Let me tell you, these oatmeal bars are delicious and just as satisfying as anything else laced with wheat! I made them for a pot luck party and they went over so well that I had to make another whole batch for myself!


OATMEAL BARS

  • 2 medium bananas
  • 1 3/4 cups oats
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup peanut butter
  • 3 tbsp maple syrup
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 cup dark chocolate
  • 1/8 tsp salt

Preheat oven to 350c and grease a 9×9 pan. Mix all ingredients together (try microwaving the peanut butter first to make it easier) and bake for 20 minutes.


It really couldn’t be easier and I love this recipe since I always have the ingredients on hand. Perfect for a fast dessert, healthy enough for breakfast and delicious enough for a party!

Homemade Dill Relish

One thing I hate buying at the grocery store is condiments. I always wonder what half of the ingredients are and it always freaks me out a little to not know what I am putting in my body!

I have been starting to make my own condiments lately and now with the veggies coming out in the garden…it’s relish time!!

My husband hates sweet relish, so I thought I would whip up some dill relish. The taste is far beyond anything you would buy in the store and you can alter it to you taste!

HOMEMADE DILL RELISH

Makes 3 small jars (like these ones here)

  • 4 pounds cucumbers. I used pickling cucumbers because they have less seeds, but any kind will work.
  • 1 tbsp tumeric 
  • 1/4 cup pickling salt
  • 2 cups cold water
  • 1/2 sweet onion
  • 1/4 cups sugar
  • 1/4 cups diced fresh dill
  • 2 cups white vinegar

A food processor is almost mandatory for this recipe. I shredded 10 cucumbers in only 3 minutes!


Add cold water, salt and tumeric to shredded cucumbers, cover and refrigerate for 2-3 hours, or overnight.

After soaking, rinse well in a strainer and let sit to drain. To get all of the water out, place in cheese cloth (or a jay cloth since that was all I had!) and squeeze, and squeeze and….squeeze! You will be amazed at how much water comes out!


After all the water has FINALLY been removed, place shredded cucumber in a pot with dill, onions, sugar and vinegar.


Bring to a boil and then reduce heat to a simmer for 15 minutes. Prepare your jars and lids by boiling for 3 minutes then place relish in hot jars. Make sure to clean the rims then put jars in a hot water bath for 15 minutes.


I actually ate it by the spoonful! It is so tangy and dilly! I was amazed that there was any left to can!


Blueberry Crumble

Nothing is more beautiful than a bowl full of ripe, juicy blueberries, expect for maybe a bowl of warm blueberry crumble right out of the oven!

This recipe is healthy and easy so it is perfect for breakfast, dessert or make it in a large dish for pot lucks. It can also be made gluten free, and does not contain a lot of sugar!

I make this recipe in individual ramekins because there is just my Husband and I at the house, but even if I have company, I like to serve them like this. They are just so pretty! The colour of the blueberry sauce peaking out from the crumble after they are cooked is so bold and vibrant, it just screams freshness! You can serve with a scoop of ice cream or low fat frozen yogurt for extra special occasions!

BLUEBERRY CRUMBLE RECIPE

Serves 2 individual ramekins. Feel free to double or triple the recipe for groups!

  •  1 cup of fresh blueberries, washed and check for stems
  • 1 tbsp white sugar
  • 2 tsp lemon juice
  • 2 tbsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup oats
  • 1/4 cup flour, corn masa, coconut flour, almond flour, etc. Any flour works here. Its job is to keep the crumble from getting too soft and oatmealy! I use corn masa because that is what I have in the house and it turns out perfect every time!
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup melted butter
  • 1/4 tsp salt

Preheat oven to 350 c. Wash blueberries and add white sugar, lemon juice and 1/2 of the cinnamon and mix. Let sit while making the crumble.

To make the crumble, add oats, flour, brown sugar, salt and the remaining cinnamon to a bowl. Melt butter and pour into dry ingredient. Mix together until you have a nice crumble. It shouldn’t be wet or too dry that there is dust on the bottom of the bowl.

Top blueberries with crumble and bake for 20-25 minutes until the top gets a nice brown colour and the blueberry sauce starts creeping up the side.

This is the hard part…..let sit for a couple minutes to cool. Believe me, and I know from experience, those blueberries are hot and will burn your mouth bad if you don’t wait!

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Hope you enjoy! I had this for breakfast today and am already planning on making it for dessert next week!!

Peanut Butter and Jelly Bites

Raw, gluten free and vegan…how can you go wrong? These Peanut Butter and Jelly Bites only have 4 ingredients and take about 4 minutes to make and 30 minutes to chill before you can dive in and start eating them!

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I often get super carb cravings that I used to satisfy with cookies or bread. Since going gluten free, I have been looking for something healthy curb that craving! This recipe is perfect for lunches, snacks or for breakfast. I keep a container of them in the fridge at all times!


Peanut Butter and Jelly Bites

Makes approximately 12 x 2 inch balls.

Mix everything together. If it is too wet, add more oats, too dry, more peanut butter.


Once rolled, put in the fridge for 30 minutes to set! That’s it! No seriously, that is all there is to it!

Hope you enjoy 🙂

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Fresh Garden Cucumber Salad

I have been really excited about all of the cucumbers that have been coming out of the garden lately! Fresh, beautiful little green cylinders that make great pickles, relishes, eye masks and of course, salads! 


If you are like me, lettuce salads are great, but sometimes you just crave something different! Something fresh, juicy and light. May I offer you a simple recipe for cucumber salad to curb that craving?


Now let me start by saying one thing right away….the longer it sits the better. So if you are having a dinner party and want a side dish that you can prepare ahead of time, this is your recipe! It pairs well with anything off of the BBQ for amazing summer entertaining!


Fresh Cucumber Salad

This recipe serves 3-4 as a side dish, but feel free to double (or triple it) because remember, the longer it sits the better! Also makes a great lunch the next day.

  • 3 small or 1 large cucumber
  • Handful of fresh dill (big handful)
  • 1tbsp mayonnaise 
  • 1tbsp sour cream (or greek yogurt)
  • 1tsp apple cider vinegar
  • Salt and pepper to taste ( my taster likes lots!)


Just mix everything together and let sit in the refrigerator.

Like I mentioned, let sit for at least 4 hours. Overnight is so much better though! 

I have seen a lot of people say cucumber salad doesn’t have much flavour, but my guess is they didn’t let it sit long enough! 

So if you are like me and have lots of cucumbers and dill in your garden, you might be serving a lot of this recipe! It tastes like summer, it is perfect to prepare ahead and perfect for hot summer days!