French Toast with Raspberry Compote!

We celebrated my 57th birthday and Mother’s Day in France this May. What a spectacular vacation. Of course I had to come home and share a French inspired meal and I think you are going to love it! This is my French Toast with Raspberry Compote, a breakfast guaranteed to please!
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French Toast with Raspberry Compote #frenchtoast #raspberrycompote #glutenfree #dairyfree

The French are All About The Pastry For Breakfast

Croissants, French Bread, toast with preserves, you name the bread, the French will eat it for breakfast. Did we have this exact breakfast in France. Nope. Never. But it was inspired by the French love of pastry and preserves.

French Toast with Raspberry Compote #frenchtoast #raspberrycompote #glutenfree #dairyfree

Where We Went and What We Did:

This trip was all about visiting our daughter, son in law, and grand baby Minna, who live in the heart of Paris.

French Toast with Raspberry Compote #frenchtoast #raspberrycompote #glutenfree #dairyfree

And while we did have my 57th birthday dinner at Les Ombres near the Eiffel Tower, we spent the next several days in Barbizon.

French Toast with Raspberry Compote #frenchtoast #raspberrycompote #glutenfree #dairyfree

Barbizon is a small town about an hours drive from Paris. While there we shopped for food at open markets, perused the art shops, and took walks through the forest on the way to our in laws house for meals in the garden.

French Toast with Raspberry Compote #frenchtoast #raspberrycompote #glutenfree #dairyfree

If you go to Paris I highly recommend spending a couple of days in Barbizon or nearby Fountainebleau. The French certainly do appreciate beauty. At every turn there seems to be  something charming to catch your eye.

French Toast with Raspberry Compote #frenchtoast #raspberrycompote #glutenfree #dairyfree

And don’t even get me started on the parks in France. The most exquisite, well thought out and relaxing parks I have ever seen!

French Toast with Raspberry Compote #frenchtoast #raspberrycompote #glutenfree #dairyfree

A Trip To Trouville:

After visiting Paris and Barbizon we packed up and headed to Trouville, a small, quiet beach community in Normandy. Quaint is an understatement and the beaches were pristine!

French Toast with Raspberry Compote #frenchtoast #raspberrycompote #glutenfree #dairyfree

French Toast with Raspberry Compote #frenchtoast #raspberrycompote #glutenfree #dairyfree

French Toast with Raspberry Compote #frenchtoast #raspberrycompote #glutenfree #dairyfree

Off to Chateau de Chambord!

So, do you want to visit France yet? How could you not? Our last few days in France were spent at the Chateau De Chambord. Yes, this is real life.

French Toast with Raspberry Compote #frenchtoast #raspberrycompote #glutenfree #dairyfree

We toured, ate, relaxed, ate, boated, ate, slept, ate and ate. My pants are tight. I am not happy about it, but c’est la vie!

French Toast with Raspberry Compote #frenchtoast #raspberrycompote #glutenfree #dairyfree

French Toast with Raspberry Compote #frenchtoast #raspberrycompote #glutenfree #dairyfree

Want to See More?

Follow me on Instagram and check out my stories: Paris 2019, The Wedding, and France! (PS these links only seem to work on desktop…sorry phone viewers)

Now, Onto The French Toast!

I serve this vanilla laced French toast loaded with berries and drizzled with homemade raspberry compote. The compote only takes about 15 minutes to make and adds a beautiful splash of bright fuchsia! The compote can be served hot or cold and stores well in the fridge for five days. If you want to make the compote sugar free,  I recommend using Lankanto a natural 1:1 sweetening option! If you need a good gluten free bread I recommend New Grains Bakery. They ship to your door. I order and stock up the freezer.

French Toast with Raspberry Compote #frenchtoast #raspberrycompote #glutenfree #dairyfree

The Recipe: French Toast with Raspberry Compote! (GF, DF and Sugar free options offered)

What you need: if making this recipe sugar free, in place of sugar I recommend Lankanto a natural 1:1 sweetening option made with monk fruit and Stevia powder! If you need a good pan, read this <—click! If you need a good gluten free bread I recommend New Grains Bakery. They ship to your door. I order and stock up the freezer. To make this recipe dairy free use your favorite almond milk or make your own!

5 from 14 votes
French Toast with Berries and Raspberry Compote
Prep Time
10 mins
Cook Time
15 mins
 

A beautiful, elegant French Toast with Raspberry Compote. Gluten free, dairy free and sugar free options offered.

Course: Breakfast
Cuisine: French
Keyword: breakfast, dairy free, french toast, gluten free, sugar free
Servings: 4 servings
Ingredients
Raspberry Compote
  • 3 cups fresh raspberries, rinsed
  • 3 tablespoons granulated sugar (or Lankanto a natural low carb sweetener linked above)
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 3 tablespoons water
French Toast
  • 8 pieces of your favorite bread (I use GF sour dough from New Grains Bakery linked above)
  • 4 eggs, whisked
  • 2/3 cups milk or almond milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla or vanilla paste
  • 4 tablespoons butter, ghee or coconut oil
  • 1 pinch sea salt
  • 1 cup fresh raspberries, for topping
  • powdered sugar, for garnish, optional
Instructions
Raspberry Compote
  1. Add all ingredients to a saucepan, mix well, bring to a boil

  2. Reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally

  3. Fruit should begin to break down and thicken. The longer you cook the thicker it will become so use your own judgement. When compote looks like a thin syrupy jam, turn off heat. If you wish to remove seeds (completely optional), pour through a screen colander and use a spatula to push liquids through screen, discard seeds. Use compote warm or cold. Can be stored covered in the fridge for 4-5 days or frozen for a month.

French Toast
  1. Whisk eggs, add milk and vanilla, whisk more

  2. Place pan or skillet on medium heat. When pan is hot, melt butter, ghee or coconut oil. Make sure pan is evenly covered with oil

  3. Add bread to pan and cook until golden brown on each side

  4. Top with berries and compote, garnish with powdered sugar if desired

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Mixed Berry Smoothie Bowl

Breakfast, they say it’s the most important meal of the day. Apparently the thinking goes that if you start the day off with a healthy meal you’ll be more likely to keep making healthy choices the rest of the day. I agree with that line of thinking, so I came up with this Mixed Berry Smoothie Bowl. Beautiful isn’t it?
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Mixed Berry Smoothie Bowl #smoothiebowl #breakfast #vegan #vegetarian #dairyfree

Why a Smoothie Bowl?

Smoothie bowls aren’t that different than a smoothie served in a glass, but serving in a bowl allows you to add toppings like the ones I use here: fruit, coconut, and granola, making your morning smoothie a little more substantial and filling…not to mention pretty.

Mixed Berry Smoothie Bowl #smoothiebowl #breakfast #vegan #vegetarian #dairyfree

Breakfast in Less Than Five Minutes!

Simply add ingredients to the blender, and while it does it’s job you can slice a banana and a few berries, grab the granola and voila! A healthy breakfast in a snap.

Mixed Berry Smoothie Bowl #smoothiebowl #breakfast #vegan #vegetarian #dairyfree

 

The Recipe: Mixed Berry Smoothie Bowls!

Tips and what you’ll need: a good quality blender. I love my Blentec! If you want to use rich, creamy homemade almond milk in this recipe <—click!

5 from 11 votes
Mixed Berry Smoothie
Prep Time
5 mins
 

A quick, simple, healthy breakfast! I offer this recipe using dairy and non dairy choices.

Course: Breakfast
Cuisine: American
Keyword: easy breakfast recipe, smoothie bowl
Servings: 2 servings
Author: Linda Spiker
Ingredients
  • 2 cups your favorite milk (almond milk, whole cow's milk, coconut milk etc)
  • 1 1/2 cups frozen strawberries
  • 1 cup frozen blueberries
  • 6 pitted dates
Toppings:
  • banana slices, berries, shredded coconut, granola
Instructions
  1. Place two cups milk (almond or cow) into blender, add dates and berries, blend until smooth. If you need to thin out smoothie, add up to a 1/2 cup more milk. Pour into bowls and top with granola, shredded coconut, and berries! Serve and enjoy!

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Sun Dried Tomato Hummus!

When it comes to choices in appetizers, hummus is a favorite at our house. We especially love this Sun Dried Tomato Hummus. It’s fabulous and only takes five minutes to make!
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Sun Dried Tomato Hummus! #hummus #appetizer #vegan

THE STORY OF HUMMUS:

Hummus is a staple food from the Mediterranean and  middle east. And like all staple foods it has a history. Back in the day when people had to travel long distances on foot or animal they had to carry their food with them. It needed to be lightweight, nutrient dense and easy to make….dried chick peas, otherwise known as garbanzo beans fit the bill. When travelers arrived to their destination they could soak the dried chick peas in water, mash with olive oil, add a little lemon juice and sea salt and they had a protein packed meal loaded with energy producing healthy fats!

Sun Dried Tomato Hummus! #hummus #appetizer #vegan

Adding  Flavor To Hummus:

We are big fans of plain hummus. It’s totally a fan favorite. But sometimes we love to toss in some additions to take the flavor profile up a notch. Check out my gorgeous brilliant pink Roasted Beet Hummus as well as  the black bean and roasted red bell pepper variations on my Trio Platter! 

Sun Dried Tomato Hummus! #hummus #appetizer #vegan

Sun Dried Tomato Hummus: Perfect Alone or as Part of a Platter!

This hummus can certainly stand on it’s own served with a simple assortment of veggies or pita. But I also love it as one component of my Ultimate Mediterranean Appetizer Platter. Trust me, this platter is a hit at any party.

The Recipe: Sun Dried Tomato Hummus!

Tips and what you will need: you need a food processor to make hummus, and as always you need a good knife! If you want to turn this into a complete meal salad, click here.

Recipes for Sun Dried Tomato Hummus
Prep Time
5 mins
Cook Time
10 mins
Total Time
15 mins
 

Homemade Sun Dried Tomato Hummus is perfect for dipping with pita and a variety veggies!

Course: Appetizer
Cuisine: Medeterranean, Middle eastern
Keyword: easy appetizer recipe, party recipe
Servings: 8 servings
Ingredients
For Sun Dried Tomato Hummus
  • 1 16 oz can garbanzo beans, no liquid
  • 1/2 cup sun dried tomatoes in oil and herbs (and more for garnish)
  • 1/3-1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil (start with 1/3 and add more if needed, I usually add)
  • juice of 1/2 a small lemon
  • sea salt to taste
  • 1 tablespoons roasted pine nuts (for garnish)
  • Serve with sliced Persian cucumbers, carrots, cherry tomatoes, red peppers, flatbreads, pita chips, tortilla chips etc.
Instructions
For hummus:
  1. Place drained garbanzo beans and sun dried tomatoes in the food processor. Give it a whirl. 

  2. Add lemon juice through the drizzle feature on top of the machine and process. Add olive oil. Process, add a pinch of sea salt. Check the consistency and add more olive oil a little at a time if needed. When hummus is the right consistency, taste. Add more salt of necessary.

  3. Place in a bowl and garnish with chopped sun dried tomatoes, fresh tomatoes and/or pine nuts. Serve with sliced Persian cucumbers, carrots, cherry tomatoes, red peppers, flatbreads, pita chips, tortilla chips etc.

 

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Spring Roll Spaghetti Bowl (with Grain Free Option!)

I can’t even begin to tell you how happy I am about the arrival of spring! I am sure many of you feel the same way after this unusually harsh and long winter. Let’s kick spring into high gear with this Spring Roll Spaghetti Bowl with Grain Free Option!
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Spring Roll Spaghetti Bowl (Grain Free Option!) #springroll #pasta #glutenfree #garinfree #healthypasta

Isn’t This Just So Pretty!?

Just as healthy as it is beautiful, this pasta dish is loaded with veggies, greens and fresh herbs! To put this pasta salad over the top we drizzle it with a delicious sweet and spicy asian almond butter dressing made with hints of ginger and sriracha!

Spring Roll Spaghetti Bowl (Grain Free Option!) #springroll #pasta #glutenfree #garinfree #healthypasta

The Pasta Choices: Including a Delicious Grain Free Option!

When it comes to pasta, to each their own. You can use your favorite traditional spaghetti, or  gluten free spaghetti, but for this version I went completely grain free using Cali’flour Foods pasta! I love introducing you to interesting new healthier pasta options and Cali’flour Foods has come up with a winner! This pasta is made with only two ingredients: cauliflower and lentils for a firm, al dente, grain free pasta that tastes great and has fabulous texture. I also love Cali’flour foods pizza crusts. And now they make mini flat breads too!

pring Roll Spaghetti Bowl (Grain Free Option!) #springroll #pasta #glutenfree #garinfree #healthypasta

The Perfect Vegetarian Bowl Recipe or BBQ Side Dish!

This recipe makes the perfect meatless Monday vegetarian dinner or beautiful side dish to any protein. It also makes a beautiful presentation on any BBQ or picnic table. Of course,  you could just toss in some warm rotisserie chicken or grilled shrimp! Whatever floats your bloat.

Spring Roll Spaghetti Bowl (Grain Free Option!) #springroll #pasta #glutenfree #garinfree #healthypasta

The Recipe: Spring Roll Spaghetti Bowl (Grain Free Option!)

Tips and what you need: for best results cook pasta to package instructions. You will need a stock pot, and a colander. If you want to try GRAIN FREE CALI”FLOUR FOODS PASTA <—click!

5 from 17 votes
Spring Roll Spaghetti Bowl
Prep Time
10 mins
Cook Time
10 mins
Total Time
20 mins
 

A fresh and fabulous take on spaghetti! If you wish to add protein to this meal, grilled shrimp, rotisserie chicken, or thinly sliced steak all work well!

Course: dinner
Cuisine: Asian
Keyword: #spaghetti, #spring roll, gluten free, pasta
Servings: 4 servings
Ingredients
  • 8 ounces spaghetti
  • 2 cups carrots, peeled and cut into "matchsticks"
  • 2 cups seedless cucumbers, slice and cut into half moons
  • 4 green onions (scallions) sliced thinly on the diagonal
  • 1 shallot, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 1 cup each loosely packed cilantro, mint leaves and basil leaves
  • handful mixed baby greens
  • 3 tablespoons unsweetened almond butter
  • 3 tablespoons avocado oil or extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons honey
  • 2 tablespoons lime juice
  • 1 tablespoon rice or apple cider vinegar or
  • 1 teaspoon sriracha
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 2 teaspoons freshly grated ginger
  • 1 clove garlic, grated
  • optional garnishes: sesame seeds, red pepper flakes, or peanuts
Instructions
  1. Bring a large pot of salted water to boil. While waiting for water and pasta to cook, prep veggies and herbs

Make Sauce:
  1. Whisk together almond butter, oil, honey, lime, sriracha, salt, ginger and garlic. Mix until well blended, set aside

Put it all together!
  1. When pasta is cooked, strain in a colander, do not rinse. In a large bowl toss noodles with carrots, cucumbers, scallions, shallot, herb leaves and half the dressing. Serve in bowls over mixed greens, with additional dressing to taste. Garnish with additional options if desired. Serve!

 

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Easy Mango Salsa!

Mangos are in season! You know why? Because mangos are always in season here in the United States. We’re lucky to have access to many different varieties of mangos, and because they each have their own unique seasons, we can enjoy mangos and this Easy Mango Salsa all year long.
This post contains affiliate links. I may make a commission off sales but your price remains the same.)

Easy Mango Salsa! #mangosalsa #whole30 #paleo #fruitsalsa

Mango Tips:

1. Ripe mangos should be firm but have a little ‘give’ when lightly pressed, like a ripe but firm avocado. Keep unripe mangos on the counter at room temperature. Mangos shouldn’t be refrigerated before they are ripe.
2. Mangos will continue to ripen at room temperature, becoming sweeter and softer over several days.
3.To speed up ripening process, place mangos in a paper bag  and roll the bag closed.
4.Once ripe, mangos should be moved to the refrigerator, which will slow down the ripening process. Whole, ripe mangos may be stored for up to five days in the refrigerator.
5. Mangos can be peeled, cubed and placed in an airtight container in the refrigerator for several days or in the freezer for up to six months.
Easy Mango Salsa! #mangosalsa #whole30 #paleo #fruitsalsa

THE SALSA!:

If you are able, make this salsa the morning of the day you plan on serving it. That gives the  flavors need a chance to meld…but if you forget to plan ahead, no worries! It will still be delicious served right away.

Easy Mango Salsa! #mangosalsa #whole30 #paleo #fruitsalsa

LEARN TO WORK WITH CHILI PEPPERS!

This salsa does contain Serrano chilis. Chili peppers are hot little thangs so you’re going to want to know how to handle them safely, luckily I can help you with that! Click to learn How to Handle a Hot Chili Pepper.

Easy Mango Salsa! #mangosalsa #whole30 #paleo #fruitsalsa

Serving Suggestions:

We love this sweet and spicy mango salsa on fish, like this tropical salmon….

Easy Mango Salsa! #mangosalsa #whole30 #paleo #fruitsalsa

…and we love it on our Spicy Lime Chicken

Easy Mango Salsa! #mangosalsa #whole30 #paleo #fruitsalsa

…or our pulled pork tacos. Of course this salsa is great on plain old tortilla chips too!

Easy Mango Salsa! #mangosalsa #whole30 #paleo #fruitsalsa

The Recipe: Easy Mango Salsa!

What you need: a good knife! Click to learn How to Handle a Hot Chili Pepper.

5 from 17 votes
Mango Salsa
Prep Time
5 mins
Cook Time
5 mins
Total Time
10 mins
 

Sweet and tangy with a blast of heat.

Course: Condiment
Cuisine: Mexican
Keyword: kid-friendly recipes, party recipe, summer recipe
Servings: 4 servings
Author: Linda Spiker
Ingredients
  • 1 large mango, peeled, cored and diced
  • ¼ of a medium red onion. finely diced
  • 2 tsp cilantro, freshly chopped
  • Juice of half a lime
  • 1 serrano chili, finely minced (use as much or little as you wish)
  • ½ of a small red bell pepper, diced
  • Pinch of sea salt
Instructions
  1. Combine all ingredients except serrano chili and toss. Add serrano a 1/2 teaspoon at a time, stirring between additions until desired heat is achieved. Cover and refrigerate till serving.

 

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