So the biggest thing that gets me when I am trying to eat healthy, is having that crunchy and salty experience of a potato chip. I must have the crunch! I am slave to the crunch. The great thing is there is so many other alternative out there, that is so much more healthy for you and delicious.
Kale chips and Zucchini chips are a very good option and I got you covered, click the links to try these yummy crunchy alternatives, Spicy Garlic Kale Chips and Zucchini Chips recipe. But if that doesn’t take care of your crunch, my Roasted Red Curry Chickpeas are loaded with fiber, plant-based protein and a bit of a nice crunchy bit. They are super easy to prepare and make a wonderful on the go snack.
For the Red Curry Roasted Chickpeas
1 can of organic chickpeas
1 tbsp of olive oil
1/2 tbsp of red curry powder, more or less based on your preference or Harissa powder
1 tbsp of no salt garlic herbal seasonings
sea salt and cayenne pepper to taste
Preheat oven to 400 degrees
Blot chickpeas with a paper towel to dry them. In a bowl, toss chickpeas with olive oil, and season with red curry powder, no garlic seasoning and sea salt and cayenne pepper, to taste. Spread on a baking sheet with parchment paper and bake for 30 to 35 minutes, until browned and crunchy.
If you want softer Chickpeas, bake on for 20 to 25 minutes.
Tuesday is my day to get refueled from the weekend and a super busy Monday. Mondays are one of my busiest times of the week, very rejuvenating but I am moving from one thing to the next.
I have an early morning Life coaching and Reiki session and right after, I teach my yoga class and then I am off to do B’Tyli Natural Skin Therapies work, plus other things that my Creative Marketing Director, Kristina Millsaps has on the agenda. So, let me tell you when Tuesday rolls around I am ready to go and set in my yoga teacher’s studio and her peaceful presence, for 1 hour and 30 minutes and receive my healing and bliss. Tuesdays, also calls for a little work. I really don’t consider this a work day, because I get to make raw food and let out some creative energy. I love making raw foods for my clients, because it sends healing to them and I always make enough for leftovers for me. 🙂
Today was all about the carrots. I juiced carrots for a yummy raw carrot and ginger soup, this juice also was used to make a raw carrot and ginger dressing for a beautiful cruciferous salad. Cruciferous salad?
Cruciferous vegetables have risen in popularity recently due to their apparent cancer-fighting properties. This large group of plants is diverse, each providing strong, unique flavors. It is named after the Latin word for crucifix because the blossoms of these plants resemble a cross.
Cruciferous vegetables include:
Cruciferous vegetables are low-calorie, and rich in folate, vitamins C, E, and K, and fiber. Fiber is an important nutrient to incorporate if weight loss is the goal, as it helps keep you fuller longer.
But, hmm… what to do with the all the carrot pulp. I decided to make these yummy Raw Carrot Cake bites. I shaped them like Easter eggs, because I thought these would be so pretty on the table at Easter. Raw vegan or not, you will love these little bites. They are very versatile, you can use your favorite nut, add your favorite spices, like cinnamon, nutmeg, and pinch of clove. Also raisins or dates will work just find in this recipe. I did not use nuts for this recipe. I love nuts, but sometimes we can have a love hate relationship and today my body said, NO NUTS! 🙂
I hope you enjoy this recipe and maybe add it on your table for Easter or any day of the week. Happy Easter Everyone! Enjoy setting your table with love.
1 cup gluten free rolled oats
1/2 cup sunflower seeds
1/2 shredded unsweetened coconut, set aside 2 tbsp for garnish
3/4 cup dried raisins
1/2 cup carrot pulp
1 tsp maple syrup
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp cinnamon
½ tsp nutmeg
¼ tsp cloves
¼ cup water or more if needed
Blend oats, sunflower seeds, 1/2 cup coconut in vitamix (food processor should work too) until you get a fine consistency like flour.
Add in dried raisins, pulse a few times to break them up then add carrots pulp, maple syrup, vanilla and spices.
Slowly add in water. You looking for a consistency of nice slightly wet cookie dough
Roll dough into balls, like the shape of Easter eggs and cover in shredded coconut if you want.
This recipe is so delicious and full of exotic flavors, well at least I think so. LOL.
This salad will fill you up and give you tons of plant based vegan protein. You do not have to be a vegan to enjoy this salad. It’s important to incorporate more plant based foods in our diets, because it will help you look and feel better and it will give you tons of energy. I maybe help drop a few unwanted pounds. Who doesn’t want more energy and a few pounds out the way? Me, me, me!!
I got something for you, in this simple to make salad. I hope you enjoy the flavors and how you feel later. Harissa maybe a new ingredient you are trying, so let me break it down for you.
Harissa is a North African hot chili pepper paste, the main ingredients of which are roasted red peppers, Baklouti pepper, serrano peppers and other hot chili peppers and spices and herbs such as garlic paste, coriander seed, saffron, rose or caraway as well as some vegetable or olive oil for preservation.
This Harissa I used in this recipe is a powder form that I got form my local William Sonoma.
1 can organic chickpeas, rinsed and drained
Preheat oven to 450 degrees F (230 degrees C).
Blot chickpeas with a paper towel to dry them. In a bowl, toss chickpeas with olive oil, and season to taste with salt, harissa seasoning or cayenne pepper. Spread on a baking sheet, and bake for 30 to 40 minutes, until browned and crunchy. Set aside to cool.
For the Lentils
1 cup dry lentils
3 cups of vegetable broth
salt and pepper to taste
Cook on a stovetop, using 3 cups of vegetable broth to 1 cup of dry lentils. Be sure to use a large enough saucepan as the lentils will double or triple in size. Bring to a boil, cover tightly, reduce heat and simmer until they are tender. For whole lentils, cook time is typically 15-20 minutes. Drain and set aside.
1 small acorn squash, chopped in to 1 inch slices
1 1/2 tbsp olive oil
1 small red bell pepper, cut in slices, save a couple of slices to chop up to top the salad
1/4 cup poblano peppers, chopped
1 cup red cabbages, sliced thinly
1/4 cup red onions, diced
6-8 mint leaves, small to medium
1 cup micro greens, or baby arugula
1/2 cup pumpkin seeds
After the legumes are cooked and cooled, turn the stove on medium high heat, place a large saucepan on the stove. Add your oil allow to heat up, then add the acorn squash, red bell peppers and poblano peppers to the pan. Season with salt and black pepper. Cook for 4-5 minutes or until the squash is golden brown, but not mushy. Remove from the heat and set aside.
In a salad bowl add the roasted chickpeas and lentils, gently toast together. Add the cooked vegetables and the raw cabbages, mint, red onions and the chopped raw red bell pepper. Top with micro greens and pumpkins. Squeeze some lemon juice and drizzle olive oil over top the salad with a pinch of sea salt and gently toss, incorporating all the ingredients.
Enjoy. This makes a large salad for 4-6 or a great meal for lunch and dinner for 2.
Some encounters bring you back home to what your soul is yearning for. This year has done that for me and my family. I have been around people and places that have made me feel like, I was coming home. One of those encounters inspired me to move my culinary creative juices back to Raw Foods. Raw foodism is the dietary practice of eating only uncooked, unprocessed foods. It only includes, fruits, vegetables, nuts and seeds. Now I AM NOT A RAW FOODIST, VEGAN OR VEGETARIAN, but my diet is about 80% plant based. I believe eating whole foods is better for my body, mind and spirit. So, how did I come back home to raw foods? My best friend. She wanted to take a yoga class one morning and I did have the time, I had so much work to do. I was behind schedule on several projects, I felt run down and just wanted to work and maybe catch a nap in. However, inside of me, my spirit was calling from some release, so I went.
The funny thing is, as we were driving to the studio, it hit me where we were going, to my old yoga studio. The place I learned about the healing beauty of yoga and meditation, ironically another one of my best friends introduced me to this studio, 13 years prior. I got some teacher training here from some the best yoga teachers in the United States. I was very ill during that time, fighting kidney disease and trying to take care of a toddler.
The yoga studio was a place of love and great healing for me. As we walked into the yoga studio, there on her mat was the owner and one of my first yoga teachers. My heart felt so much joy. I felt like I was back HOME. The class was amazing and I felt more energy in my body and spirit, plus so much peace.
My yoga teacher and I caught up and we talked about health issues. She shared with me her journey of healing and it hit me why I was there. Food has been a healing art for me. So of course, my best friend and Creative Marketing Director of my wellness company, mentioned what I had been up to lately with food. My yoga teacher was excited, she had been eating raw to heal, but she runs three businesses and doesn’t have time to prepare the food. She asked me to help her and of course it was my pleasure to say, YES. The yoga studio and her classes brought me so much healing and now I could give back. Life is always trying to bring us home, if we just take the time out to slow down and listen.
Here are three ways you can use my Raw Chocolate Ganache.
Raw Chocolate Ganache: You can use this for many other desserts
1 cup maple syrup
1 cup cacao powder
1/4 cup coconut oil, pinch of sea salt
Using your blender, mix together syrup and coconut oil until well combined. Add in your cacao powder and a pinch of sea salt, and process until smooth – scraping down the sides as needed. Use immediately, or keep in an airtight container in the fridge for up to a couple weeks. If using the ganache after being refrigerated, simply place the container in warm water for a few minutes to let it soften up a bit, or roll out ganache truffles using a melon scoop. 🙂
Raw Chocolate Ganache Torte with Pistachio Dust and Black Berries
1/2 cup black cherries, thawed out frozen cherries
3/4 cup Raw Chocolate Ganache
1 tbsp maple syrup
crushed pistachios and a black cherry
Using a blender Blend everything together, using a biscuit cutter, place on a sheet pan with parchment paper . Pour the ganache mixture into the biscuit cutter, almost to the top, leave room to add the pistachios. Add the pistachios and top with a black cherry. Put into the freeze and allow to set over night or for at least 2 hours to get it very firm. When ready to serve, allow to set room temperature for about 2-3 minutes, this will make it easier for you to push the torte out of the biscuit cutter. Gently remove, by pushing up from the bottom with a frosting spreader or the back of a spoon.
Serve and enjoy immediately because the base is made of coconut oil, it must be eaten immediately or kept frozen.
Pears Dipped in Spicy Raw Chocolate Ganache topped with walnuts and cardamom with a side of cardamom coconut cream
1 pear cut in half and seeds removed
Raw Chocolate Ganache, in it’s liquid form. if using the ganache after being refrigerated, simply place the container in warm water for a few minutes to let it soften up a bit.
whole coconut milk
1 tsp cardamom and a little more to dust over the pears
1 tbs maple syrup
Super simple. I add a little lemon juice to the pears, so they would not brown. Dipped them into the ganache. I dipped half of the pears here, added crusted walnuts, sprinkled with cardamom, you can also drizzle maple syrup, honey or agave over them for more sweetness. Put the pears into the fridge for an hour or overnight so the ganache can harden on the pears properly. The coconut cream is also super simple.
Open up a can of coconut milk and remove the creamy top part and add to a bowl. Using an electric hand mixer whisk attachment, beat the cream until fluffy and smooth. Add in maple syrup and cardamom. Put whipped cream in the fridge to harden a bit, about 10 minutes. Remove the pears and whipped cream from the fridge. Add whipped cream to the pears and serve immediatley.
NOTE: This ganache has a coconut oil base so it will melt fast, so keep it in the fridge until ready to serve.
Pears Dipped in Spicy Raw Chocolate Ganache topped with walnuts and cardamom with a side of cardamom coconut cream
Last one, but oh so good. My grandson helped me make these, notice the heavy handed areas of pistachios. Love it.
Raw Chocolate Ganache Bark with Peppermint and Pistachios
3 tbsp cacao
2½ tbsp raw virgin coconut oil
1 1/2 tbsp maple syrup
small pinch sea salt
2 tbsp crushed pistachios
1 crushed soft peppermint stick
Whisk together melted coconut oil, raw cacao and maple syrup in a small bowl until completely smooth.
Add a pinch of sea salt and combine well.
Add nuts and peppermint
Line a cookie sheet with non stick parchment paper.
Pour the chocolate mixture into the lined cookie sheet and spread out evenly using the back of a spoon, spread it thick so you bark doesn’t melt so quickly when eating it. 🙂 Add the goodies on top.
Place the container in the freezer for 30 minutes until the chocolate is completely hard.
Break up the pieces and serve immediately.
Store in the freezer. PSA
Since the base of this bark is coconut oil it will melt at room temperature, so please keep it in the freezer, until ready to serve. Eat immediately.
Butternut squash, pumpkins, cinnamon, crumble, Fall, Autumn! This is me screaming all the things I love about this time of the year and cooking. My favorite things baking for my friends and family. I feel like cooking and baking for those you love is one of my most rewarding things I can do for someone.
I got to bake these yummy muffins for one of my friends and fellow yogi, Amanda, because it was her birthday. Amanda is the manager and one of the amazing yoga teachers at the studio I teach at in our community. The studio is incredible, owned by the cutest and coolest couple, Kevin and Megan Kearney, you have to check it out, Ebb and Flow Yoga and Surf.
Vegan Gluten Free Pumpkin spice muffins with a pumpkin seed and walnut crumble
Okay back to these muffins. I usually make my own gluten free flour, but this morning I decided to use one of my back up flours when I am in a hurry. I found that, this Pillsbury Gluten Free flour works great, when making muffins. When you are making gluten free baked goods, not every flour blend is going to work. So make sure the flour blend you are using, works well with what you are making. I will talk about this more soon, but check out on the blog my recipes for gluten free flours to make cakes, cookies, pancakes and muffins.
This recipe definitely will remind you of the upcoming holidays, it is packed out with those delicious spices we love during this time of the year, cinnamon, clove and nutmeg. I you will not be able to eat just one, I bet ya! 🙂
Enjoy and remember to Set the Table with Love.
Make flax eggs ~ 2 tbsp flax seed ground meal, plus 1/2 cup water
1 can pumpkin puree
2/3 cup organic cane sugar and 1/4 cup maple syrup
1/4 cup olive oil
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp sea salt
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp clove
1/2 tsp nutmeg
2 1/2 cup gluten free flour blend
3/4 cup almond milk
3 tbsp organic brown sugar
3 1/2 tbsp gluten free flour
2 tbsp pumpkin seeds, 2 tbsp of chopped walnuts
1 1/4 cup tbsp olive oil
pinch of cinnamon and nutmeg Instructions
Preheat oven to 350 degrees and lightly grease muffin tin. Dust with gluten free flour and shake off excess.
Add flax and water together into a large bowl( this is your egg substitute). Let set for 5 minutes. Next, add pumpkin purée, organic cane sugar, maple syrup, olive oil, and vanilla extract and whisk for one minute.
Stir in baking soda, salt, cinnamon, clove, nutmeg and mix. Add milk and whisk. Add the gluten free flour and stir until just combined. The batter should be thick and slightly wet, but with form and it able to be scoop into the muffin tins, easily. You do not want dry batter, dry batter will make very dense muffins.
Divide batter into the muffin tins. You will need to fill them to the top, they will not rise very much.
FOR THE CRUMBLE
In a mixing bowl, add crumble ingredients. Use your hand to mash the ingredients together, until crumbly like wet sand. Generously top muffins with streusel.
Bake for about 30 minutes or until tops are golden brown and a toothpick or knife comes out completely clean.
Let cool for 5 minutes in the muffin tin, then gently remove and cool completely on a cooling rack, before serving. Enjoy and Share. 🙂
Quinoa is one of the only complete protein grains in the vegan/vegetarian circle of life. Quinoa is considered a whole grain, but in actuality, it is a seed, from a leafy plant that is related to the spinach family. I do enjoy a good bowl of sweet or savory quinoa, but I love to explore other ways I can use ingredients. So, this morning I kept going back and forth with the question, what should I eat, quinoa or oatmeal? I just wasn’t feeling the big bowl of either and wanted something different.
Toasted Quinoa Recipe:
Cook the quinoa in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat, stirring or shaking the pan occasionally, until it is lightly dried out and toasted, about 15 minutes.
It will make slight popping sounds as it approaches being done. …
Remove the skillet from the heat.
How about granola? Well, I have made granola from scratch a million times, but not with quinoa. Yes! that’s the ticket. Roasted Quinoa granola. I can put this over fruit, yogurt, ice cream, whatever my heart desires. Well, if quinoa can be sweet, how about making it savory. Yes! again that’s the ticket, so I decided to roast the quinoa for my granola and to toast the quinoa for a savory corn salad, I am making for dinner tonight, boom! Both of these recipes are easy and you could go wild with the possibilities.
I took my Roasted Quinoa and topped it over some sautéed peaches that I seasoned with cardamom, cinnamon and a little pink salt, delish and yum yum approved.
I hope you will enjoy this complete protein healthy treat and remember to go wild with your imagination when making your granola. After it is cooked and cooled, add dark chocolate chips to it, or us a different dried fruit, like apricots or a different nut, such as hazelnuts or pecans. You decide, but whatever you come up with, Remember to Set the Table with Love.
1 cup Bob’s Red Mill Old Fashioned Rolled Oats
1/2 cup uncooked Bob’s Red Mill White Quinoa
1 cups raw almonds, roughly chopped
1 cup walnuts, roughly chopped
1/2 cup raisins
1/2 cup cranberries
1 1/2 tbsp organic cane sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 vanilla extract
pink sea salt or reg sea salt , just pinch
2 tbsp coconut oil
1/4 cup maple syrup
Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
Add oats, quinoa, almonds, raisins, cranberries, sugar, and salt to a large mixing bowl – stir to combine.
To a small saucepan, add coconut oil, cinnamon, vanilla and maple syrup. Warm over medium heat for 2 minutes, whisking frequently, until the two are totally incorporated.
Immediately pour over the dry ingredients and stir to combine until, everything is covered with the syrup mixture. Arrange on a large baking sheet covered with parchment paper and spread into an even layer.
Bake for 35 – 40 minutes. Then remove from oven and stir/toss the granola. Rotate the pan to the other side, so you can cook the other end of
the granola and bake 10 -15 minutes more, until it is golden brown. * KEEP WATCH OVER IT SO IT DOESN’T BURN. Once done, remove from the oven and cool for 20 minutes, before serving.
I love Mother’s Day. I have two boys, one 29 and my youngest is 15. I have two grandchildren, I adore and could get up with a biscuit and some gravy. They are truly yummy. My favorite thing growing up as child was to think about how I was going to make my mom feel special for Mother’s Day. Of course, I did the usually cards with macaroni glued to them and flowers, candy and little things I made with popsicles sticks. Okay, I need to confess soon as I wrote, macaroni, I thought about my mom’s cheesy, buttery, gooey macaroni and cheese, bubbling over in her special mac and cheese glass bowl. So where were we? Yes, Mother’s Day. One year I came up with the idea to make my mom, breakfast in bed. Now granted I was about 9 years old and I never really cooked a meal all by myself, but I was determined to do this for her.
I went into the kitchen very quietly. I made sure not to make a sound. I remember opening up the fridge and getting out, bacon, eggs, butter and the orange juice. Yes. I was going to make my mom, a good old southern, bacon and eggs breakfast. I put on a cup of coffee, aka, hot water and Folgers, put the cast iron skillet on the stove and added the bacon. It smelled so good, but it was making too much noise, so I closed the kitchen door.
I added the eggs to the skillet, with lots of butter, just the way my mom did. Well, maybe too much, but hey I was 9. I cracked the eggs, very gently into a bowl and used a fork to gently whisk them. I was doing something. I felt like my mom, for just a moment. I remember my little sister and brother getting up. I pulled them in the kitchen and demanded they keep quiet. We made our brother sit at the table quietly and my sister made the toast and poured the juice.
All of a sudden I hear footsteps. I wanted to cry. Oh no, it will not be a surprise anymore, I thought. But, it was my dad. He open the door very slowly. It seemed as if, it took forever for him to open that door and for me to see, it was Dad, not Mom.
He asked with a smile on his face, What are you guys doing? We replied, Making mom breakfast. He left out and said, Okay, carry on.
It was almost done. I had my sister run into the dining room and get a pretty tray from our china cabinet. We got a rose from my Dad’s rose garden and put it in a nice vase. I was so proud of that breakfast. The toast was a little burnt and the the bacon on the crispier side, but my eggs were awesome. We carried the tray to her bed and the best thing about that day that I remember, is my mom’s face when she say we had made her breakfast in bed.
Just writing this makes me cry. She has been gone for 14 years now and I miss her as though it was yesterday, when she left this Earth. She kissed me, my sister and brother and said, Thank you so much, this makes mama feel special. But I remember the special look in her eyes she gave me. She was so proud of me, she knew how much this meant to me. I will never forget that look as long as I live. She ate that breakfast as though it came from a five star restaurant. This is properly where my love of cooking for those I love comes from. The day I first Set the Table with Love for my Mama.
Thanks everyone for taking time out to read this post. I usually don’t write long. I just get to the recipes, but that will change. I believe setting the table with love, is much more than just good healthy food, it’s about expressing love and that love being experienced through food.
Happy Mother’s Day. 🙂
Check out these links for some yummy Mother’s Day breakfast and brunch idea.