A little spring for your step

There are those moments in life when everything seems to happen all at once. With the speed of lightening you become tangled in a web of beautiful choas. 

 

The transition from winter to spring is a time of rebirth, an awakening of our spirit. It can release a flood of emotion as the body rids of its winter coat. It demands attention from our creative mind. Remember to breath, to truly breath. To nourish your body through real food, sleep and exercise. For the choas is welcomed, you invited it. 

The following is a little nourishing rabbit food to help keep that spring in your step. 

Vegan Caesar Salad Dressing (makes about 1 cup) 

1 cup Raw Cashews

3 cups Water + 1 cup extra

2 Tbsp Olive Oil

1 Tbsp of Organic Dijon Mustard

1 Tbsp Oraganic Capers

2 Tbsp Nutritional Yeast

*1 Tbsp  of fresh grated Horshradish

2-3 cloves of garlic

Zest and juice of 1 lemon

1 tsp  organic apple cider vinegar

*1/2 tsp salt

*1/2 tsp fresh cracked pepper

1 slice Whole Wheat Sourdough bread per person

 Organic Romain Lettuce

Organic Black Kale

Chives/parsley and

 garlic sprouts or mixed sprouts

 

Soak the cashews in the 3 cups of  water overnight or for at least 4-6 hours. 

  1. Drain the water off the soaked cashews and place into a food processor, magic bullet or a blender with 1 cup water and olive oil. Puree until smooth.
  2. Add  mustard, capers, horshradish, lemon zest, lemon juice, nutritional yeast, apple cider vinger, garlic, salt and pepper and puree again until smooth. Taste and ajust to your palate.
  3. Preheat oven to 350f. Cut a slice of bread and then cut the bread into cubes of desired size. Drizzle with olive oil and 1 to 2 tsp of nutritional yeast, and a pinch of salt. Toss the bread cubes until well coated and place on a baking sheet and bake for about 15 minutes or until golden brown and crunchy. 
  4. Wash and cut black kale (enough for the amount of people you are feeding) place in a frying pan with a little bit of water and a small pinch of salt on medium heat and allow the kale to soften slightly. You with know when it is done when it has begun to wilt and turn a vibrant green and the water has evaporated.  It should still have a little crunch.  Remove from the pan and allow to cool. 
  5. Wash, dry and cut the romain  lettuce. 
  6. Chop chives and parsley. 
  7. Add the kale, romaine, chives, parsley and sprouts to a bowl. Add enough dressing to coat the leaves. Taste.* I like to add a little more lemon juice here. 
  8. Top with croutons and Enjoy! 
  • Notes:
  • If you can't find fresh horseradish use a bottled organic one
  • Start with 2 cloves of garlic and then add more to your liking! 
  • Add more salt or pepper if you like 
  • If you want to have as a main meal, this is delicious with cannellini beans or chickpeas, it would even be delicious with some organic smoked tofu. 

 

 

 
 
 
 

 

The Art of Juicing

"The beet is the murderer returned to the scene of the crime. The beet is what happens when the cherry finishes with the carrot. The beet is the ancient ancestor of the autumn moon, bearded, buried, all but fossilized; the dark green sails of the grounded moon-boat stitched with veins of primordial plasma; the kite string that once connected the moon to the Earth now a muddy whisker drilling desperately for rubies.
The beet was Rasputin's favorite vegetable. You could see it in his eyes.”- Tom Robbins

The Classic

 1 small bunch of organic Italian parsley

2 small organic beets

3 medium organic carrots

1 organic lemon

1 piece of organic ginger ( 1 inch quarter round, or more if you like it spicy).

  1. Wash all ingredients,
  2. Peel rind of lemon (this will help with the longevity of your juicer), quarter beets and carrots.
  3. Place in juicer and juice according to juicer guide.
  4. Pour over ice and enjoy!

* This is a strong juice so feel free to thin with a little water, or have a shooter size! 

 

Salad for one

 

I dwell in a beautiful little garden suite. As I step outside my door  I am greeted by winding wisterias, budding figs, the anticipation of raspberries and mint and the beautiful sight of spicy chives. 

Spring has much to offer and after a long winter it can be overwhelming to choose just one thing to make. This sunny Sunday I make it simple.  I treat my tastebuds to the delicate flavours of spring.  I pick a few ingredients that play well together,  giving them continual attention from sowing to harvest all the way to my table. 

The following dish is a Salad for one. One who admires, loves and embraces the beauty of simplicity.   

Salad for One

  • 1 to 2 handfuls of mixed organic greens
  • 3 to 4 organic radishes cut to your liking
  • 1/4 cup of chopped chives
  • 2 Tbsp of light chopped Italian parsley

Place all ingredients into a medium bowl 

Blood Orange Vinaigrette 

  • 1/4 cup of Blood orange juice (about 1 and 1/2 blood oranges)
  • 1/2 a lemon juiced
  • 1/2 cup Organic Olive oil (I like a spicy one, but a softy fruity one would be nice too
  • 1 tsp dijon mustard
  • 1 tsp wildflower raw honey
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt
  1. Pour blood orange juice and lemon juice into a small bowl.
  2.  Using a mini whisk or small spoon, whisk in honey and dijon with the salt until both have been well incorporated to the juice. 
  3. Slowly whisk in the olive oil until well mixed. 
  4. Drizzle the desired amount of dressing over greens, gently toss and place in a beautiful bowl to serve yourself. Finish with a sprinkle of finishing salt (Maldon)  and cracked pepper.

NOTES:

  1. This  vinaigrette will separate, so make sure to give it a good shake or stir before using.
  2. The salad dressing makes 3/4 of a cup so you will have some left over that can be placed in a mason jar and in the fridge for future use.  

Plate made by Janaki Larsen

Spring Cleaning

Here on the West Coast, the rain has ceased for a few days allowing the sun to dance free in the blue lit sky, cherry blossoms to swing in the gentle breeze and our feet to step lightly on the streets.  

With all this spring renewal I naturally reach for nourishing food, something a little light, something  fresh. 

The following salad provides a little spring cleaning for the body. Rainbow carrots are said to provide an abundance of antioxidants, with orange delivering the well know beta-carotene, purple providing anthocyanin and yellow offering a dose of lutein. These antioxidants help to protect your ticker while helping to keep your vision in check.  Toss the carrots in a dressing made of fresh italian parsley, cilantro, olive oil,  apple cider vinegar, and you've got a fighter. This dressing may help to reduce inflammation, remove unwanted heavy metals, whilst balancing your bodies ph levels.  Add some warming dukka for crunch and a sprinkle of sea salt and your spring cleaning is off to a delicious start. 

  Parsley and Cilantro Dressing:

  • 2 Tbsp of organic Italian Parsley
  • 2 Tbsp of organic Cilantro
  • Organic Olive oil (use your favourite)
  • Raw Organic Apple Cider Vinegar
  • Sea salt

Using a carrot peeler ribbion a variety of coloured carrots (about 4) until you can't ribbon them safely. Place in a medium bowl.

Place herbs in a small food processor and turn on. Once herbs have been broken down, slowly pour in enough olive oil to thin out the herbs (about 1/4 of a cup). Add 1 Tbsp of Vinegar and a pinch of salt.  Taste and adjust to your liking.

Toss the carrots in the desired amount of dressing and serve on a plate or in a bowl and top with a healthy dose of dukka. 

Eat right away!

*Not familiar with Dukka? Dukka is an Egyptian spice mix usually containing nuts, seeds and spices. Its taste will vary slightly depending on who makes it. Find a local Middle Eastern store (I get mine from Yek O Yek on Main and 14th here in Vancouver) or have a try at making your own with a recipe that entices you. 

 

Cocoa Unravelled

"Those who have been too long at their labor, who have drunk too long at the cup of voluptuousness, who feel they have become temporarily inhumane, who are tormented by their families, who find life sad and love ephemeral; they should all eat chocolate and they will be comforted." - Jean-Anthelme Brillat-Savarin

Chocolate, it's bold, earthy, fruity, acid, tart, bitter and just plain delicious. In it's natural state cocoa is filled with lots of antioxidants, vitamins and minerals that are good for the heart, skin and mind;  like we needed that to entice us more. 

 With so much of my time spent around an excessive amount of sugar at work these days,  I long for balance even more than before. Nourishing both my body and mind is not only important for myself but for those around me. I've always believed that moderation is key and that we should consume food without guilt, shame or stress.  I love Chocolate,  I love sweet things and despite what I am told over and over again, they will always be in my life.  

The following recipe which I have developed allows me to keep enjoying what I do, finding balance and nourishment for both my body and soul.  These spicy Mexican chocolate cookies are pretty delicious and embody many of my ideals around food.    Moderation may prove to be a challenge, even for those who are not vegan or gluten intolerant!  Enjoy. 

     All ingredients listed below are organic, but use what you like and or have

SPICY MEXICAN CHOCOLATE  COOKIES

  • 105g (1/2 cup) Coconut oil, melted
  • 180g (1/2 cup) Coconut Syrup
  • 35g (1/4 cup) coconut sugar
  • 5g (1tsp)  Vanilla extract
  • 2-3 Tbsp  Apple Cider Vinegar
  • 135g (1 1/2 cups) Almond Meal/flour
  • 129g (3/4cup) Brown Rice Flour
  • 72g (3/4) Cocoa Powder
  • 2Tbsp  Ground Cinnamon
  • 1 tsp Cayenne powder
  • 1 tsp Baking Powder
  • 1/2 tsp Baking Soda
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • 100g Dark Vegan Chocolate (I use 85%) 
  • 30g  Raw Cocoa Nibs
  • cane sugar for rolling (about 1/2 cup)

Method:  

  1. Preheat Oven to 350f 
  2. Scale out almond meal, place on cookie sheet and lightly toast in the oven for 5 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool. 
  3. Scale coconut oil, place in a small pot and melt on a low heat, set aside to cool. 
  4. Chop Chocolate into desired sized chances (if you are using vegan chips, skip this step) 
  5. Scale brown rice flour, cocoa powder, cinnamon, cayenne, baking soda, baking powder and sift together into a small to medium bowl. 
  6. In a large bowl whisk together the cooled coconut oil, coconut syrup, coconut sugar and vanilla. 
  7. With a spatula fold in Almond meal till well combined. 
  8. Add sifted dry ingredients, and salt. Once it is 3/4 combined add 2 Tbsp of apple cider vinegar, chopped chocolate and cocoa nibs and mix until well combined.  If the dough is dry add one more tbsp of cider vinegar. 
  9. Place dough in fridge to chill for 5 to 10 minutes (this will make rolling easier)Using a tablespoon scale out 25g-30g of dough. Using your hands roll into balls.  Toss dough balls in cane sugar and place on a 12"x17" cookie sheet that has been lined with parchment or a siltpat.  I was able to fit 4 rows of 5 cookies which allowed for spread
  10. Place in oven, and bake for 6 minutes, rotate the pan and bake for another 6 minutes.  12 minutes will give you a soft cookie, if you prefer a crunchier cookie, bake it longer. 
  11. Remove from oven. Allow to cool on pan for 5 minutes and then move to a cooling rack

*Notes

  • You do not have to scale out cookies before rolling but it will help to create uniform cookies and ensure even baking. Plus you won't have people fighting over larger cookies, although I do believe in survival of the fittest!  I also like to use a small ice cream scoop (1 1/2" round)  to measure the dough.
  • If you don't have coconut syrup in the house, maple syrup and agave work too. 
  • Play with different spices and nuts!  Hazelnut meal is delicious in these, as is lime juice and zest instead of the Apple cider vinegar
  • Can't have coconut? Substitute the coconut oil for butter, coconut syrup for maple syrup and the coconut sugar for brown sugar. They won't be vegan but they will still be gluten free and delicious!
  • If you don't want the added sugar you can skip rolling the cookies in sugar but it does add a yummy chewy, crunchy layer. 
  • I prefer to use a course almond meal (as the picture will show). This can be done by grinding your own if you can not find it. However,  a fine almond meal/flour will work too. 

I love me

Autumn arrives at my front doorstep.  I open the door to say a hello, she sighs and delivers me a few raindrops and withered leaves. Unappealing to me,  I close the door and retreat to my kitchen to see what there may be.

Brown sugar and vanilla, oh my! I search a little further. Coconut oil and matcha, can this be? Throw in some sea salt and I believe heaven has just been handed to me.

September granted me a month long journey to France,  so I now use October to reset and cleanse. This time I'll do more than just nourish my belly, I'll send my skin on an edible journey.

Brown Sugar and Sea Salt Srub

Brown Sugar and Sea Salt Srub

I love me Scrub

3/4 cup of dermera brown sugar

1/4 cup of coarse sea salt 

1/4 cup coconut oil

*1 tsp matcha 

1 tsp vanilla extract

*15 drops of Orange Essential oil

*5 drops of Cypress Essential oil

1. Grind salt in a mortar and pestle until powder fine.

2. In a small bowl combine sugar, salt, coconut oil, vanilla and if using,  matcha and both essential oils.  Mix together well and place into your favourite jar until ready to use. 

Notes:

1. Feel free to use any oil you like. Olive is also a wonderful oil,  but I find the coconut intoxicating!  Play with your favourite  essential oils or even omit.  2. This is a lot of fun and a little messy while in the shower, but it's nothing a little hot water can't fix.

Enjoy!