recipes

*This is a repost from last year but as I start baking some of my favourite treats listed below, I thought I would share again...enjoy!

So many of the goodies that we're bombarded with this time of year are loaded with sugar. And don't you find that they are everywhere, calling out for you to eat them?!  

Here are a few tips to help you keep your sugar consumption down as you enter the holiday season:

This cake was inspired by a recent trip an amazing Middle Eastern restaurant in Toronto called Byblos. It was a great way to kick off the Thanksgiving weekend with family while sharing some unbelievable dishes and exclaiming over the food! If you are ever in Toronto, I highly recommend a visit- you won't regret it. For dessert I ordered the pistachio cake with yoghurt mousse. While this cake is in no way on par with that decadence, it is my gluten free attempt to capture those flavours.

I'm always on the hunt for good snack recipes.  Most of the bars you find in the store are crazy expensive and they are loaded with sugar.  I much prefer creating quick but nurtitious "fast food" options that I can easily make at home.

 This is one of my favourite pestos for brown rice pasta or zucchini noodles. Every time I make it it turns out a little differently because I am horrible with measurements. I eyeball all my measurements which makes it very frustrating when anyone tries to replicate the recipe. I keep saying I am going to get better at making a note of all the amounts I used, but it has not happened yet despite the three empty recipe notebooks waiting for me on the kitchen shelf. Am I incorrigible? I'd like to think there's always the possibility of change...

I was looking for some dinner inspiration the other night, so I opened my new cookbook, “It’s All Good” by Gwenyth Paltrow and Julia Turshen. One recipe in particular caught my eye, “Roasted Cauliflower and Chickpeas with Mustard and Parsley”. My first thought was, what interesting combinations. More importantly, was the delicious use of a cruciferous vegetable, cauliflower. Yummy!

 A friend recently told me about the delicious buckwheat pancakes she made for Mother's Day Brunch and I was immediately dreaming of whipping up some buckwheat crepes. It's a great gluten-free alternative to wheat flour crepes and and has a distinct nutty flavour that brings a richness to breakfast or brunch. This recipe made so many medium-sized crepes that is was plenty for some almond/peanut butter and banana filled ones for breakfast and some savoury, chicken and asparagus filled ones for lunch.

 

Buckwheat crepes:

Seaweed is the commonly used name for a large range of marine (both fresh and salt water) plants and algae. Seaweed is full of vitamins, minerals and fibre. Most notable is its high content of iodine, a nutrient seldom found in other foods. Seaweed not only provides the base of most marine food chains, but also provides a wide range of benefits to humans (see this article for a more comprehensive discussion of the benefits). Among these benefits are dietary and medicinal.

 This was my first attempt at making chocolate- and it wasn't perfect. But with some tweaking, I think this could be my new favourite pastime. There is literally nothing unhealthy about this chocolate, which makes it a great addition to your diet. When you start off with unsweetened baking chocolate you are looking at a decent source of a number of minerals including zinc, copper, manganese, magnesium and iron. The important thing to remember is what kind of sweetener you use. The higher the glycemic load of your sweetener, the less healthy this treat will be!

 

The time has finally come. This is the year I am going to put in a great effort to be more mindful of the foods I am consuming. Obviously, cutting out gluten and refined sugars are high priorities. However, before I focus on eliminating foods from my diet, I would like to start on a more positive note by including healthy foods in my diet. Foods which are fun, cheap and easy to make at home. Foods such as pickles, kim chee and sauerkraut. Yum! As scary as it may sound, I am going to try my hand at making my own fermented foods.

According to Traditional Chinese Medicine, Jing refers to our genetic blueprint. Jing is passed from parents at conception. In order to increase fertility and pass along strong Jing to our children, a healthy lifestyle is important. Among other things, eating healthy food, getting enough rest and managing stress play roles in supporting Jing. Jing is stored in the kidneys. In Chinese medicine, the kidneys are associated with the reproductive system. Therefore, when thinking of foods to support your fertility (i.e., to impact the quality of your eggs or your sperm) nurture your Jing.

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