Thursday, August 22, 2013


I remember running around with the other kids on the block sucking on salted plums as a little girl.  I forgot all about them until someone mentioned them and how expensive they are now for just a few dried plums.  I thought since I had a bag of dried but soft prunes I would make some.  They came out wonderful.  So with that, I thought I'd share. This is not for all folks but 4 dried prunes holds a lot of potassium.

  • One bag soft dried prunes. Pitted is best but not necessary
  • One cup salt
  • 1teaspoon citric acid (optional)
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne red pepper (Optional)
  • Mix all dry ingredients in a bowl.  
  • Add prunes and mix well. 
  • Let sit 3 hours in the bowl. Then brush off excess salt
  • Put on a cookie sheet and bake on low till done about 3 hours
  • Store in a air tight container once cooled.
It makes a great stocking stuffer, or a nice tray at a party.or to just reminesque old time memories. Just pop one of these salty sour dried plums.  It would make every hair on your body stand on its ends.  Lol.

 Well, for those interested now you know how easy it is to make.  Please feel free to share with others on facebook, or Pinterest, or your own collection of my guest.  Thanks for stopping by.  Till the next time...many blessings.


Mary Helen

Thursday, August 15, 2013


Hi everyone,

I'm always up for a challenge, and when my friend Alma told me that she had black bean ice cream in Guatemala, and the way she described it made my mouth water.  I had to try this and woe is me, I had no recipe.  NOT! I just got the opportunity to be in my element. I added basics like vanilla and sugar and I still was not feeling it.  It was okay, just okay ... until I added some unsweetened cocoa.  Voila!  What a marriage:)  Who knew Chocolate Black Bean Ice Cream could taste so good.  Now this is healthy eating right?  Protein, vitamins and minerals and a good fat for your body to absorb it all.  I did promise cheap ways to eat healthy right?

  • 2 cups cooked black beans
  • 1/2-3/4 cups of sugar (as sweet as you like)
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil (I used coconut oil)
  • 3-4 tablespoons cocoa unsweetened
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 6-8 cups ice
I mixed all these ingredients and blended them in my Ninja 1500.
It almost broke down all the ice.  I was afraid if I went any longer, I
would have chocolate black bean soup.  Hey?  Not today:))
Instructions via photos:

I cooked my beans in a crock pot.  Two cups
of black beans I added the chocolate, sugar and oil.

I added 3 tablespoons of cocoa, very chocolatey, however, the
coconut oil overpowered the chocolate.  NO BEAN FLAVOR,
I mixed all the ingredients in my Ninja 1500w.  It left a few chunks of ice, but get the picture?  It's Chocolate Black Bean Ice Cream.  Tastes like almond joy (just the flavor).  And again it it healthy and very cheap and easy.

Well, I dare someone besides me to try this PLEASE!  Let me know the outcome.  Till then please like and share with a link below.  Thanks for stopping by and allowing me to be of service one more time.  Many blessings to all.


Mary Helen

Friday, July 26, 2013

CANDIED TOMATO PRESERVES, Not your peanut butters Jelly.

This thick Candied Tomato Preserves goes great with cheese and crackers.  If cooked down
enough it becomes almost like a soft candy chew when cold.  Yum!  Chewable vitamins:)
I have been making Candied Tomato Preserves for about 40 years now.  I've tweaked it a bit to my benefit of course.  But, I must say, these are not your ordinary preserves. For one, it has about 1/2 the sugar than regular store bough preserves. Secondly, the tomatoes retain their fresh homegrown tomatoes taste and condensed micro-nutrition. Third, you cannot find these tomato preserves in your local markets. And last of all it is cheap and easy to make. (Being cheap and easy makes it an affordable gift in a gift basket for any occasion.)
This 4 ingredient Candied Tomato Preserves goes exceptionally well with cheese and or crackers.  It would definitely be a delight to serve the newborn King (when he gets older), but for now, let's treat us!

  • 1 pound Small tomatoes (cherry or grape seed)  Homegrown or organic is best as the flavor makes a big difference in taste.  Also, soft skinned tomatoes works best for this recipe as the skin breaks down to a candy.  You can put them in the blender to break it down more. Also, you can always opt to skin the tomatoes by blanching them in boiling water for one minute before you remove the skins.  I've also made this with canned tomatoes, but I added jalapenos, and bell peppers.  So many ways to play with this recipe.
  • 1 cup Sugar
  • 1/2 cup Lemon Juice (reconstituted is fine)
  • 1 teaspoon Salt

I put all the ingredients in a stainless steel pot and cooked it down on a medium low flame for 30 minutes.  Stirring and mashing them frequently towards the end to avoid the bottom from burning

Next, you want to reduce the flame to low, and mash the tomatoes some more stirring frequently for about 10-15 minutes
or until you smell a caramel smell.  It is quite thick but will thicken a lot more when it has cooled down.

I ended up with 10 ounces of Sweet Candied Tomato Preserves.  Put this in a container with a lid.  These pic show it nice and thick while warm.
Like I said earlier, the taste is incredible good because I used
organic.  I used 1/2 the normal required sugar, but you would
never know.  These Candied Tomato Preserves,
cannot be bought at you local market, which by the way,
makes great gifts. Also, The price was right!  Fridays, out local 99 cent
store sells organic produce.  I also got the lemon juice and sea
salt there. 
Ok, how easy was this?  No need for a candy thermometer, or pectic, artificial flavors, or any other gadgets. Personally, I think it is definitely worth the time and effort to treat yourself to a tasty dish loaded with condensed micro-nutrients like vitamin C and Lycopene.  Well that's it for now.  I have a lot of catching up to do.  So till the next time, please like and share.  You have my permission to Pin It, Thank you for allowing me to be of service.  Till the next time...Many Blessings.

Mary Helen

Wednesday, April 17, 2013


This goes great with some nuts crushed on it for a bit more protein.  One time I added a bit of whipped cream.  Chocolate
syrup would work too. Yes it
was good.
This was my lunch today. Protein and omega 3's with a fruit serving. Tastes so good, you'd think you we're doing something bad:). No need to explain how this is made, but you're in for a treat like dessert. Yes, it does curb that sugar tooth in a much healthier way. However, please consider a healthy peanut butter that has not been hydrogenated or partially hydrogenated. These are clogging and unhealthy oils. Too bad they taste good.

Slice this up and you are ready to eat.  My friend Shekinah who is a Hollywood makeup artist and a beautiful bikini model.  Well she does lot's of modeling, but looks great in anything.  Anyway, it's yummy for the tummy.  I thought I'd share.

Thanks for letting me be of service.  Till the next time stay safe, and many blessings.


Mary Helen

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Holy Mackerel That is Good Fish

Brenda Watson, a worldwide famous health practitioner said in one of her infomercials that Mackerel is an excellent source of Omega 3 fatty acids.  She also said "who wants to eat mackerel every day", and laughed because, not many folks do.  Well I found a way to make that fish taste pretty good.  

Canned Mackerel and tomatoes served with rice

You'd be saying..."Holy Mackerel That"s Good tasting fish, and it's good for you too. This Mackerel dish  cost about $2.50 and serves 4 hungry mouths.  However this can says it's serves 7.5.  I can't see it, because I enjoy food.  LOL.  Perhaps too much, but oh well. Anyway, I've done quite a bit of research on Omega 3's and it's benefits. and I suggest you do the same because its remarkably good.  The can does not list all the nutritional benefits.
I found this can on sale at the 99 cent store.  So I thought it was a very good
deal.  I bought two cases a few months back.  Yes I do believe in food
storage, and good deals.

So there is HOPE here after all.  Sorry I had to through that in.  Brenda Watson also said that it was important for us to have HOPE every day in our diet.  So with that, I HOPE you try this.  You might like it.  By the way hope stands for
H...........High Fiber
O...........Omega 3's  (M

  • One can mackerel in tomato sauce
  • Tomatos, canned, diced ( fresh is good too)
  • Lemon Juice 1 ounce
  • Oil, 2 tablespoons
  • Garlic 2 cloves minced
  • Onion 1/2 minced (I ran out so I made it without)
  • Parlsey 1-2 teaspoons (use lavishly, it has almost no taste and is very healthy in the greens 
  • dept.
  • Cayenne pepper according to taste
  • Sugar 1-3 tablespoons ( I mixed sugar with sweet and low)
  • Soy sauce  a couple of good dashes.
  • Oyster sauce 2-3 heaping tablespoons
  • Cold Water 1/4 cup
  • Cornstarch 2-3 teaspoons
Well here goes the instructions via pictures.  I hope that works for you.

Heat oil in pan, add garlic and saute till caramelized.  Add all the ingredients EXCEPT the mackerel, water and
cornstarch.  Simmer for 5 minutes...
Mix cornstarch with cold water and add to pot stirring slowly.  Add fish.  See there were only three little
pieces in that 15 oz can.  Serves 7.5? Not on my table.  LOL. If you want it thicker, just add more cornstarch.
Since there are only three small pieces I did not cut them till I was ready to serve it.

And this is what I did with the left overs.  Thank God for Press'n Seal.  Now
I have something for another day.
See how quick and easy that was.  Not to mention cheap yet healthy.  Shhh, don't tell anyone it came from a can and they will never know.  Well, that is it for now.  So till the next time, stay well, and many blessings:)


Mary Helen