How to make a Simple Smoothie

Organic strawberriesMy son got himself a GoPro.  I had never heard of a GoPro but I  now know that it is this cool little video camera that has all kinds of features.

He said that I could use it to make a video in the kitchen.  Awesome.

I have only done one other video before, that is about what I typically eat in a day.  Check it out here.  It was made not long after my head injury.

I decided to make a short video for you; showing you how I make a smoothie in the morning. Very, very simple.

I was rather nervous and so I am not my usual smiley self!  With practice, I will get better. Watch it here.

The measurements for the ingredients are all listed below.

I forgot to mention that adding your favourite flavours is a great idea.

Here are some suggestions:

  • vanilla
  • maple syrup (just a little)
  • cinnamon
  • raw cacao powder
  • freshly squeezed orange juice
  • almond butter
  • use hemp or flax seeds instead of chia
  • coconut oil

Breakfast Green Smoothie
Author: 
Recipe type: Breakfast
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 3 cups
 
This is a very simple smoothie that can easily be modified to suit your tastes. Choose organic ingredients whenever possible.
Ingredients
  • 2 Tablespoons chia seeds
  • liquid to cover chia seeds
  • 1 heaping cup fresh strawberries
  • 1 banana
  • 10 oz spinach or green of choice
  • ½ avocado (optional)
  • liquid to cover (water, coconut water, almond milk, cashew milk, etc)
  • protein powder (optional)
Instructions
  1. Before you hop in the shower, put your chia seeds in your blender and cover with water to soak.
  2. Once you are ready, put all ingredients in the blender.
  3. Blend for several minutes.
  4. Taste and adjust seasonings (may need to add vanilla or another banana or a shot of maple syrup)
  5. Pour and enjoy until you feel full.
  6. Save the rest for later in the morning.

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Barbara’s Raspberry Dream Cakes

Raspberry Dream CakeI enjoy desserts that are delicious in flavour, not in sweetness.  I would rather have a juicy piece of fruit than say, a doughnut with icing.

In order to please myself with a dessert that I would love, I made this recipe this past weekend.  We had a holiday on the Monday (Victoria Day here in Canada) and I thought that I would make something special.  I made it as a cake in a springform pan rather than the individual cakes that I will show you today.

We ate it all up with smiles on our faces, longing for more.

Since I did not photograph the initial process, I decided to make the recipe again.  Last night, after work.  This time as individual cakes.

 

Dream Cake 1

I organized myself in the morning by soaking the dates and the cashews and putting the coconut oil in bowl, ready for the warm water bath.  I also took the raspberries and coconut meat out of the freezer.

I worked the evening and did not arrive home until 8:30pm.

I started preparing the cakes and by 9:30pm, the delicious treats (and photos) were complete AND I had tidied up!  Not bad, I say.

How is this done?

Let me tell you…

Remember to use organic products whenever possible.

Begin by soaking your cashews in water.

soaking cashews

Next get your dates soaking.

soaking medjool dates

Add the chia seeds to the thawed raspberries, along with the juice from the raspberries.  Put this mixture in the fridge to allow it to thicken.

raspberries and chia

Set out the coconut meat to thaw.

coconut meat

A word about the coconut meat.  I used an unpasteurized, organic,  frozen coconut meat.  This was my first time using the frozen meat.  It really added to the flavour of the creamy filling.  It is full of electrolytes and antioxidants and is so healthy for you.  It is a little on the pricey side but I think that it is worth it.

To make the base, you will need to grind the almonds to a fine meal…

almond meal

…add the dates (drain them first) to bind it all together.

almond and date crust

So far so good, right?

Get out your muffin tins and put a bit of parchment paper in each.  This will make it easier to get the little guy out when you are ready to enjoy it.

Make balls of the dough and flatten them out by hand.  Put them in the bottom of each muffin tin.

crust in the tins

Now for the filling.  Are you excited yet?  I am!

Drain the cashews and put them in the food processor.  I don’t bother to clean out the processor.  Let’s keep it simple, shall we?

Add the remaining ingredients: lemon rind, lemon juice, melted coconut oil, coconut meat, maple syrup and vanilla extract.

ingredients for filling of Dream Cake

Process this until it is smooth and creamy.

creamy Dream Cake filling

Scoop on top of the crusts in your muffin tin and top with the raspberry sauce.

Dream Cakes in the tins

Place in the fridge to firm up.

Dream Cake

Serve and enjoy.

Dream Cakes

Oh my,  definitely enjoy.

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5.0 from 1 reviews
Barbara's Raspberry Dream Cakes
Author: 
Recipe type: Dessert
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 12-16
 
This is a refreshing, delicious dessert that can easily be made into a round cake in a 8 " springform pan. Switch the raspberries for other fruits that you like. Get organized the day before you want to make this. Thaw the raspberries, soak the dates and cashews. Add the chia to the raspberries. When you are ready to start, it will be a swift process.
Ingredients
  • 300g frozen raspberries, thawed
  • ½ cup chia seeds
  • 1 cup almonds
  • 10 medjool dates, pitted (1 cup), soaked at least an hour
  • 1¼ cup cashews, soaked at least 4 hours
  • rind of 1 lemon
  • juice of 1 large lemon, about ¼ cup
  • ⅓ cup coconut oil, melted using warm water bath method
  • ½ cup young coconut meat, thawed
  • ⅓ cup maple syrup
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Instructions
  1. Place the thawed raspberries, along with their juice in a bowl and add the chia seeds. Stir together until well combined. Set aside in the fridge, to allow the mixture to thicken. May be done ahead of time and kept in the fridge.
  2. Place the coconut oil in a bowl and put this bowl in a bowl with hot water. Set aside to let the oil liquefy.
  3. Grind the almonds in a food processor until it resembles a fine meal.
  4. Chop the soaked dates and add to the almond meal. Pulse until a sticky dough forms.
  5. If making individual cakes, divide the dough into 12-16 balls. Flatten with your hands, to form small circles that will fit in the bottom of the muffin tin.
  6. Put parchment paper in your muffin tins and place the circles in the bottom of each tin. Set aside.
  7. In your food processor, put (remaining ingredients) cashews, lemon rind, lemon juice, melted coconut oil, coconut meat, maple syrup and vanilla. Process until you have a smooth, creamy mixture.
  8. Scoop a heaping tablespoon or enough to fill the muffin tin ¾ of the way, into each muffin tin. You may have filling left over (darn!). Have it for breakfast.
  9. Scoop some raspberry sauce on to each cake.
  10. Place in the fridge for a few hours.
  11. Remove from the tin and serve.
  12. May be stored in the fridge for up to 5 days.
  13. May be stored in the freezer (be sure to bring to room temperature before serving) for up to 2 weeks.

A Simple Guide to Menu Planning

Rainbow SaladI feel that it goes without saying that organization is the key to successful menu planning.  Having a clean and well-organized kitchen will encourage you to spend time there and create beautiful dishes for yourself and for your family.

Balance is also important to planning a weekly menu.

Balance

  • the season
  • the weather
  • your health
  • your individual tastes
  • what is available to purchase
  • your cooking and working schedule
  • the dietary needs of your family.

I feel that this can be applied to any type of diet.  I choose a Plant-based, Whole Foods diet that is gluten-free and vegan with mostly raw foods.  That is what works best for us.Continue Reading

Strawberry Lemon Chia Pudding

imageI splurged and bought beautiful organic strawberries this week.  I really wanted to just eat all of them but decided that I had better share with my family.  So I made this pudding for dessert tonight.  I had some for breakfast too but don’t tell anyone.

Chia seeds have amazing health properties.

Here are just a few:

  1. Important for digestive health – high in fibre
  2. High in Omega 3
  3. Good for your bones – high in Calcium
  4. High in Manganese – another nutrient that is good for bones
  5. Helps reduce belly fat – stabilizes blood sugar
  6. Lowers cholesterol

Great reasons to eat chia seeds, right?Continue Reading

How to Detox The Easy Way

beautiful girl enjoying the summer sunThe calendar says that Spring is here.

Spring is a good time to do some detoxing to improve your health, boost your metabolism and help renew your energy.

“Why?” you ask.

Gently cleansing your body has the following benefits:

  • boost your metabolism
  • give your body a rest to allow it to repair itself
  • remove toxins and wastes from your body
  • improve your blood sugar levels

I know that there is a negative stigma attached to doing a cleanse or detoxing so I thought that I would make a few simple suggestions.Continue Reading

The Miracle of Vitamin C Part II

camu

My previous post was full of information regarding the importance of Vitamin C.

When looking to increase  your Vitamin C intake, consider the following foods:

Foods High in Vitamin C
Camu Camu powder- 1 teaspoon=720mg
Chili peppers- 1/2 cup=107.8mg
Red bell pepper -1 cup=190mg
Kiwi – 2 fruits = 137.2mg
Broccoli – 1 cup= 132mg
Cauliflower -1 cup=127.7mg

Other excellent sources of Vitamin C are cabbage, sprouts, parsley, strawberries, citrus fruits and rose hips.

Continue Reading

3 Reasons Why I Eat A Whole-Foods, Plant-Based Diet

butterfly-108616_1280There are many reasons to move towards eating a Whole-Foods, Plant-Based Diet.  But before I share my main reasons, let me remind you what this diet is about.

What is a Whole-Foods, Plant-Based Diet (WFPB)?

A whole-food, plant-based diet is centered on whole, unrefined, or minimally refined plants.  This diet focuses on fruits, vegetables, tubers, whole grains, and legumes; and it excludes or minimizes meat (including chicken and fish), dairy products, and eggs.  It also excludes highly refined foods like bleached flour, refined sugar, oil and trans fats.

I choose to exclude meat, dairy, eggs and refined foods from my diet.  I also choose to eat foods in their freshest state, preparing food from scratch and eating mostly raw foods.  I also include sprouts and fresh juices.  Another important thing for me is avoiding Genetically Modified Foods (GMO).Continue Reading

6 Ways to Outsmart Your Food Cravings

Fresh-green-salad

What are Food Cravings?

I believe that most people in Western Society have regular food cravings.  Usually the cravings are for a sweet or salty and/or crunchy snack.   You know, when you are watching a good movie and you just want that bag of potato chips?  Or you had a big argument with your spouse or a friend and the only thing that will make you feel better are the cookies or the bowl of ice cream?  We have all been there.Continue Reading

My Raw Dilemma

vegetables-2I am very focused on my health and am quite strict with myself when it comes to food choices.

I want to eat as much raw foods as I possibly can because I know that fresh, raw vegetables and fruit are full of important enzymes, vitamins and minerals that improve my overall health.  I know that these fresh raw foods rejuvenate my cells and clean my bloodstream. This helps me to maintain my weight, gives me more energy and helps me to feel more alive.Continue Reading

Your Biggest Source of Stress May Not Be What You Think

IMG_0385AFor most people, stress is real in their lives.  People struggle with Physical stress, Emotional stress and more recently, Nutritional Stress.

What is Nutritional Stress?

Nutritional Stress is defined as stress in the body caused by eating foods with unhealthy properties.  It is caused by eating processed foods, eating too many sugary treats, eating refined foods, eating hydrogenated oils and more.

Our health is compromised by eating processed foods on a regular basis.  It is common these days for people to have many food sensitivities, as well as allergies. Studies have shown that there is a link between food sensitivies and allergies and the typical North American diet.  The food sensitivies and allergies can give way to ‘cravings’ and so the unhealthy foods are difficult to eliminate.Continue Reading