Nearly at their seasonal prime, blueberries will be bursting their blue richness on Canadian soil over the coming weeks. If there were one berry to be consuming on a regular basis, it would be the blueberry. Blueberries are ranked among the top superfood fruits and vegetables for their antioxidant activity. Not only that but they are loaded with vitamins, minerals and other beneficial nutrients that make them even more delightful to consume.
If you don’t already have enough reasons why you should be consuming these blue gems…here’s a few more.
5 Benefits of eating blueberries
- Blueberries are a source of the antioxidant ellagic acid which blocks metabolic pathways that can lead to cancer
- Blueberry skins contain resveratrol – which has proven to have anti-cancer, anti-inflammatory and blood sugar lowering properties
- Blueberries are an excellent source of vitamin C, E and fiber.
- They are only 81 calories per cup!
- They’re a cool and refreshing fruit perfect for hot summer days!
5 Uses for Blueberries
- Combine them in a fruit salad with other berries
- Blend them into a smoothie for liquid nutrition
- Bake them into muffins or pancakes
- Eat them fresh right out of the container
- Make a blueberry pie!
Wild Blueberry Tart
- 1 cup almonds, roasted and cooled
- 3/4-1 cup oat flour
- 2 tbsp maple crystals or organic sugar
- 1/4 tsp baking powder
- Pinch of sea salt
- 3 tbsp melted coconut oil
- 1/4 cup maple syrup
- 2 tbsp agar flakes (natural form of gelatin)
- 1 3/4 cup apple juice
- 2 tbsp tapioca (or cornstarch) dissolved in 1/4 cup apple juice
- 2 tbsp maple syrup
- Sea salt
- 2 cups fresh wild blueberries, washed and drained
Preheat oven to 350F. Oil a 9” tart pan.
For the Crust:
- In food processor, grind nuts to a meal. In mixing bowl, combine nuts, flour, maple crystals, baking powder and salt.
- In separate small bowl, whisk together oil and maple syrup.
- Mix wet ingredients (oil and syrup) into dry ingredients (nut meal and flours).
- Press crust mixture into tart pan. Refrigerate 15-20 minutes, then bake 20-25 minutes. Let cool completely.
For the filling
- In a small pot, simmer agar flakes in apple juice until agar completely dissolves. When agar dissolves, add tapioca/juice mixture. Whisk until mixture thickens. Add maple syrup.
- Add pinch of salt and berries. Cook 6-8 minutes. Remove from heat and let mixture cool partially. Pour into cooled crust pan.
- Let set completely. Garnish with mint before serving. There may be a small amount of filling left, you can enjoy as a pudding by blending in food processor.
It seems like more and more lately we keep hearing about superfoods. The question is, do you know what a superfood is and what qualifies it as a superfood?
What Are Superfoods?
Superfoods are a category of foods found in nature; they are superior sources of essential, super-power nutrients, nutrients we can’t make ourselves. They are the most powerful foods on the planet, and are powerhouses for the transformation to a slender, healthier you. If you are what you eat, why not be super?
Where Can I Find Them?
Superfoods can be found everywhere. You are likely using many of them already everyday. Not all superfoods come from exotic places like Costa Rica and Thailand – but many are right here in North America and can be found at your local health food store, grocery store or farmer’s market.
Everyday foods such as kale, quinoa, sweet potatoes, blueberries, and raw honey are amazing superfoods to start with. If you want to get exotic – include superfoods such as nori seaweed, cacao, goji berries, maca, Maqui, and mesquite as well.
Superfoods Also Include:
- Raw foods – (food not heated above 48 degrees Celsius or 120 degrees Fahrenheit),
- High enzyme foods - (foods that easily break themselves down are easier on our digestive system, such as mangoes, pineapple, papaya and avocados)
- Organic foods - (foods grown without pesticides, herbicides, and chemicals)
- Fresh, local foods (visit local farmers markets and taste the difference that local foods make!)
When Choosing Your Superfoods:
Look for foods with a variety of colour, texture, flavour and shapes. This makes your meals and snacks exciting! No one wants a boring meal that doesn’t taste good.
Focus on high nutrient-dense foods over low calories. Calories don’t determine how many vitamins, minerals, enzymes or overall nutrients are in a food item. Superfoods have concentrated nutrients (protein, carbohydrates and fats) and provide so much nutrition in every bite. It’s also important to get away from focusing on calories all the time. It can become obsessive and you may loose sight of actually consuming good quality food!
They make you happy! They help you to actually lose weight because you will be eating foods that satisfy and satiate, rather than make you crave other foods! Your cells become saturated with nutrition. Plus:
- They give you energy
- They help your body to detoxify
- They give you mental clarity
- They promote activity and weight loss
- They improve immunity
- They clear and brighten your skin
If you want a FREE spot in this class see details here!
Superfood Power Balls
What’s in it?
1/2 cup pumpkin seeds
1/2 cup sunflower seeds
2 tbsp hemp seeds
1 cup chopped dates
1/4 cup goji berries
2 tbsp cacao nibs or cocoa powder
1 tbsp raw honey or coconut nectar
1/2 tsp vanilla powder
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp sea salt
2 tbsp Sun Warrior Protein Powder (Use code MW007 when checking out at RAW ELEMENTS for 5% discount)
How it’s made!
Place all the ingredients into the bowl of a food processor and pulse until you get a thick “doughy” consistency. Roll into bite size balls for quick power bites –perfect for your purse or a midday snack or after a workout.
What are your favourite Superfoods?
It seems of lately that more and more we’ve been hearing about raw foods. Which leads me to say that adding more of them into your diet is absolutely a great way to boost your health. Incorporating raw foods into your everyday eating means focusing on fresh fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, and sprouts. With these foods as the foundation of your diet, you will have more energy, lose weight and feel fantastic, as they’re loaded with enzymes, vitamins, and nutrients.
But it’s not about becoming 100% raw and following strict guidelines – it’s just about eating better and getting some pure, clean, and fresh foods into your body. Even if half of your meals each day consist of raw food, you’re on the right track. Your entire meal doesn’t have to be raw; simply enjoy a cooked meal along with a salad or a fresh juice.
My advice: don’t get too caught up with the details. Just start simply by adding more “raw” foods into your meals.
Here are a few ways to get started + a delicious recipe!
- Have at least a serving or more of fresh fruit everyday. This can include an apple, pear, orange, berries or a fresh fruit smoothie
- Have multiple servings of fresh vegetables everyday – cut up carrots, celery, peppers, a large dark leafy green salad or a fresh pressed green juice.
- Enjoy a handful (or two) of raw organic nuts and seeds. Put them into a trail mix with raisins, goji berries, apricots – and you can even add some pure raw dark chocolate (cacao) into the mix
- Grab a bag of fresh sunflower or pea sprouts from your local health food store or farmers market. These make a great addition to salads, sandwiches, soups, stir fry’s and smoothies
- Get creative and try to prepare a few new raw recipes each week including smoothies, raw nori rolls, cookies and nut based spreads
If you’re thinking about reaping the benefits of incorporating more raw foods into your lifestyle and need a little professional help along the way, join me for a Raw Made Easy cooking class on May 16th. I will be showing you easy and impressive ways to prepare delicious, raw foods.
Almond Basil Pesto
A delicious spread to enjoy with raw bread, flatbread, and crackers or served with crunchy raw veggies, kelp noodles or shredded zucchini!
2 tbsp torn fresh basil
1 tbsp chopped parsley
1 cup whole almonds, soaked overnight or for 8 hours
½ cup pine nuts
2 tbsp lemon juice
1 garlic clove
¼ cup olive oil (or more) for a creamier consistency
- Place all ingredients in food processor and blend until smooth
- Place in a small bowl and refrigerate
- Serve with cucumber slices, zucchini noodles, carrots, whole grain or raw crackers or brown rice pasta/kelp noodles or steamed vegetables
As explained in my previous blog, I tested out the new Vega One protein powder and sports hydrator drink. I also had my team give it a try to see how it affected their lifestyle. The fun part about this is that they all used Vega for different reasons. Read on to see how it turned out!
Stephanie – The Fitness Buff
When it comes to training and nutrition a rule that I live by is to train smart and fuel properly. Many people can get to the gym, follow through with their workout but not have the right combination of nutrients to provide their body with the fuel they need to repair, re-energize, and make gains towards their fitness goal.
The focus of my training is to build lean muscle and increase my strength. I’d mix 1 scoop with 350ml of water or rice milk and consume it within 30 minutes after my session. Not only did I notice a difference in my energy levels but my delayed onset muscle soreness was greatly decreased, I experienced less fatigue throughout the day and my workouts the following day always felt better and stronger.
Most recently I have started using the Electrolyte Hydrator. I mix the Hydrator in some water and drink it during my work out on the days that include more anaerobic work, such as sprints, intervals and plyometric training. I also pack it with me for long days at school or work and when I need a little more energy to keep me feeling refreshed.
I have seen huge gains since starting to supplement with Vega’s Sport Performance line and these three items have become a part of my daily training routine! Keep training and re-fuel the right way!
Sophia – Vegetarian Taking it to the Next Level
My non-vegetarian friends always ask me, “Where do you get your protein from if you don’t eat meat?”, and I’m sure vegetarians (and vegans alike) always sigh when they have to give a listed answer. Protein does not exist only in meat – it’s in many foods like grains, beans, nuts, soy or tofu, and yes, protein supplements like powders. And although this isn’t breaking news, you’d be surprised at how many people ask me this question!
I’m picky about what goes into my food and body – I like knowing that my protein shake (among other foods) is full of natural, plant based ingredients, vitamins, and nutrients. Which is why I was so happy to test out the new Vega One Vanilla protein powder. Because I am a petite girl and I tend to lose weight very easily, I like to incorporate high-protein based foods into every one of my meals in the day. I used Vega One Vanilla protein powder as a nutritious liquid meal rather than after the gym like Stephanie and Jordana. I combined 1 cup of hemp milk, ½ cup of sliced strawberries, and 1 tbsp of goji berries, flax seeds, chai seeds, cacao nibs, and coconut nectar (thanks Marni for this simply divine recipe!). I sipped that down with my glass straw and I was full and chock full of nutrients for the next 2 hours. I didn’t feel bloated, stuffed, or heavy like some other protein drinks with questionable ingredients had made me feel previously. It was a great tasting meal that left me full and satisfied knowing that I got both a healthy and generous serving of protein, all in one cup.
Jordana – Before and during a Workout
Chocolate Protein Powder
For breakfast I made myself a chocolate shake using the protein powder. My smoothie consisted of ½ a banana, blueberries, chia seeds, water, almond milk and protein powder. Not only was it delicious, but I was satisfied for hours and it lowered my cravings throughout the day. I’m very much the type who snacks out of boredom, however; I was so full from the shake that I didn’t have these cravings!
For the first time I did back to back fitness classes (2 hours in total) so I knew I needed something to refuel after the first workout. I’m pretty skeptical adding anything to my water, but I figured I would try for the sake of testing it out. After my first workout, I filled up another bottle of water and added the lemon lime hydrator. I’m surprised to say it tasted delicious and quenched my thirst, although on a daily basis I prefer the pure taste of plain water.
After assessing the day, the combination of a balanced breakfast and the electrolyte hydrator definitely contributed to a successful workout!
So there you have it. All my girls found the Vega drinks to accommodate their days pretty well based on their needs and uses. If this post has inspired you to incorporate more protein or fitness foods in your routine, then my Fit and Fabulous class is something you don’t want to miss out on!
Tell us why you want to use Vega and what you’d use it for and we’ll enter you in the contest for a chance to win free samples! At the end of the week, I’ll choose the best answer to be rewarded with the prize. Good luck Torontonians! Contest closes May 11th, 2012.
Note: (Winner must be in Canada)
You can get more delicious knowledge by checking out Marni’s Purely Fit e-book, available here: http://www.marniwasserman.com/ebooks/
I’ve been using Vega products for over 6 years, and as you may know I’m already a huge fan of Vega’s sport performance pre workout drink.
So, when I was offered to be part of their ambassador team, I was absolutely thrilled. Knowing that I would get to try some of their new and innovative products, I was especially excited to test out the new Vega One protein blend and sport hydrator. I not only put myself to the test, but I had my entire team give it a go as well to see how it fit into their lifestyle. We all have a different perspective.
Today, I share with you my Vega experience.
Vega One Protein Blend
The Vega One complete blended protein is perfect for anyone on the go. It’s easy to mix up with water, rice milk, almond milk or hemp milk, and the new creamy texture goes down very easily. The prime time for these quick shakes is for when I’m running out the door in a rush and I don’t have time to put things into my blender (which I do daily basis). The new Vega One shake also has the perfect amount of nutrients to hold me over for a few hours.
Vega Sports Hydrator
This formula is perfect for long workouts because it just gives you that extra strength to push through. It is not overly sweet, it’s smooth and soft, and gives your water a boosting lift. I can’t see myself drinking this regularly, as I don’t like to flavour my water – but from a sport, training, and fitness perspective it really does take my workouts to the next level.
I have to say that I’m really impressed and excited to share the new Vega One formulas with my team and my clients. In my upcoming Fit & Fabulous class, participants will also get to sample this new product… and I can’t wait to get their feedback as well!
Stay tuned for my team’s thoughts on how these Vega blends had an impact on them!
You can get more delicious knowledge by checking out Marni’s Purely Fit e-book, available here: http://www.marniwasserman.com/ebooks/
It’s that time of year again when seeing the sun come out from behind the clouds makes me want to be outside. I want to play, and I want to get fit!
The question that’s always asked of me though, especially because I’m active and vegan, is how I have enough energy to get through my days and my workouts? Well, I simply say that I have the perfect solution: plant-based foods. Not only are they filled with the most highly nutritious and bio-available vitamins and minerals, but they taste great too.
Plant based foods provide all of the macronutrients (proteins, carbohydrates, and fats) essential in maintaining optimal energy. Since working out causes physical stress, it creates acidity in the body. In order to regain a state of alkalinity, it’s essential to neutralize the body by consuming a plant-based diet filled with neutralizing plant-based foods.
My top sources of energy foods:
- Hemp Seeds – contains omega 3 fats and provides long sustaining energy. I love to put them on salads, in smoothies and cereal.
- Chia seeds – are loaded with fiber and expand when soaked. Chia makes the most delicious morning porridge. Amazing for before my workouts.
- Kale - is a green leafy powerhouse veggie. It is loaded with magnesium and is alkaline forming. Chopped up in a raw salad or steamed on the side of quinoa, kale completes any plate.
- Sea vegetables – storing a wide range of trace minerals and nutrients, sea vegetables provide natural sodium to the diet. My favourite sea vegetable is arame or nori – they give me mental clarity and focus.
- Tempeh – one of the highest sources of plant protein, is fermented, and is easy to digest. I love marinating tempeh with cider vinegar, lemon juice and coconut oil for a boost to my salads and wraps.
- Coconut water and coconut oil – coconut water replenishes the body with much needed electrolytes. So when I am working out, this is my go to beverage. Coconut oil – is loaded with medium chain fats, so they are a quick source of energy and nourishment before and after activity.
- Quinoa - contains all of the essential amino acids which are crucial building blocks for protein. Protein builds muscle, so it is important to consume protein especially after a workout.
- Goji berries – are a natural source of antioxidants, protein and fiber. They are perfect in a trail mix before a workout or great tossed in a smoothie after a workout.
- Cacao – one of nature’s richest sources of magnesium. Gives me a natural boost of energy. Cacao gives me the perfect excuse to have chocolate for breakfast. Tossed in a smoothie or cereal it adds the perfect crunch and kick!
- Honey – loaded with enzymes, antibacterial and antimicrobial properties honey is soothing and easy to take down. It is a natural source of sugar and calories so it makes a perfect addition to my pre workout snack and it also gives me that extra boost of energy.
These are the foods that I reach to when I want to get moving, and I highly suggest them to anyone who hasn’t tried them yet. I know my body’s going to use them well and efficiently, and give me that boost of energy without causing me to crash and burn out. They are sustaining, nourishing, and versatile enough that I can consume them daily in multiple ways without ever getting bored of them.
To learn more ways to fuel your workouts, join us for our Fit and Fabulous cooking class on May 21st where we will be making homemade energy bars, happy hemp loaves and liquid nutrition smoothies that will help take your body and fitness goals to the next level!
When your mum used to say to you “Eat all your veggies!” it was for a good reason. Vegetables are a must that should be included your diet to keep you feeling healthy and fabulous. Not only are vegetables rich in fiber, minerals and vitamins, but for those wanting to look as good as they feel, vegetables are low in calories, excellent energy sources, and help maintain a healthy weight.
That’s why it pains me when I often hear that people throw out the stems, tops and skins of their fruits and veggies. You may not realize it, but they usually carry more nutrients than the fruit or vegetable themselves. If you’re going out of your way already to buy beautiful, fresh, or even local and organic produce, then why waste the most nutritious parts? Unless you are composting – you’re getting rid of essential nutrients that could be benefiting you.
Most stems, skins, and even leafy tops to fruits and veggies are loaded with fiber and nutrients. Since the stem is the component that’s rooted in the soil, it contains more substantial vitamins and nutrients. For vegetables such as kale, collards, parsley and swiss chard – don’t get rid of those precious stems!
Then there’s the tops. This is for vegetables like beets, carrots, or any other vegetable that sprouts a leaf or anything green. This is indicating that the vegetable is full of vibrancy and nutrients, so don’t just cut them off and toss them into the garbage. They’re very useful and can be a great contribution to your diet.
The skin of most fruits and vegetables such as apples, oranges, potatoes, squashes and even kiwi, contain antioxidants, fiber and other health promoting properties.
What can you do with your leftover stems, tops, and skins?
Depending on the type of fruit or vegetable – whether it’s a leafy green or root veggie – there are different uses for them.
Uses and benefits for your stems, tops, and skins
- Stems make a great the base to a stir-fry. Add in broccoli and swiss chard stems at the beginning along with your onions and celery. That way they can soften and absorb lots of flavour.
- Stems make are great for the base for a soup stock (collard stems, kale stems, parsley stems). Let them infuse in your water for an hour or so and then remove. They will leach all of their nutrients into your soup stock.
- The skins from citrus fruits contain bioflavonoids, which are amazing antioxidants. Use the zest of an orange into a cookie, muffin or yogurt.
- Put the stems and skins of any fruit and vegetable through your juicer. From collards, kale, broccoli and chard to carrots, beets and apples.
- Bake your potatoes and squash with the skins on. Potatoes skins have potassium, iron, and vitamin C.
- Use the tops of beets and stems of swiss chard to make a wonderful and colourful side dish. Beetroot tops are loaded with calcium, magnesium and iron.
Garlicky Green Stem Sautee
3 cloves of garlic
2 large bunches of whole beet root tops and swiss chard
1-2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
How you make it!
- Fold green leaves in half lengthwise and cut away the leaf from the inner ribs or stem.
- Chop up the stems into small pieces and set aside.
- Pile about 5-6 leaves on top of one another, and roll into a tight roll
- Starting at the top and cutting across the leaves, slice the leaves into needle thin strips.
- In a large skillet, heat the oil over medium heat.
- Add the garlic and sauté for a few seconds.
- Add the stems, season with salt and pepper and sauté for 5 minutes or until soft.
- Add in the green leaves and cook until they are bright green, and are just short of their wilting point.
Most people don’t know what a sprout truly is. In fact I get a lot of people who think that when something is sprouted it has gone bad or gone off. In fact, the opposite is true.
When a grain, legume, nut or seed has been sprouted, the nutritional profile has more than doubled. Meaning protein, enzymes, fiber, antioxidants, vitamins and minerals and are at their optimum potential. Which means you will not only digest them efficiently, but you are getting so much more bang for your buck so to speak. Just a small amount goes a long way nutritionally speaking.
Sprouts are an alkalizing, living foods which continue to grow and gain vitamins after being harvested, which when compared to food bought at the supermarket that begin to lose their nutrient content as soon as they are picked (and are not then consumed for weeks on end), become very attractive – especially if you are trying to add more raw food to your diet.
Here are a couple of things to keep in mind.
How to Sprout
Get yourself a glass jar + cheesecloth or mesh lining. You can also use a stainless steel colander, sprouting jar or sprout kit. (Get your very own glass sprout kit – order one today at firstname.lastname@example.org)
1. Soak your legume, grain, nut or seed for 8-10 hours.
2. Rinse and drain.
3. Continue to rinse and drain for 1-3 days until what you are sprouting starts to grow a shoot. When the shoot is as long as the item itself, it is ready to be consumed. (Important - be sure to rinse and drain at least 2 times/day or more. You can even add in 1 teaspoon of vitamin C or amla powder to one of your rinses to prevent mold growth)
4. After a sprout has formed be sure to consume right away and store in the fridge.
What to Sprout
Legumes: lentils, adzuki beans, chickpeas, mung beans
Grains: brown rice, quinoa, buckwheat, kamut, wild rice or wheat berries
Nuts: almonds, cashews
Seeds: sesame, sunflower, chia, flax
Benefits of Sprouts
All LEGUMES such as those mentioned above are highly concentrated in both protein and starch and are acid-forming unless sprouted. Sprouting helps to reduce the acid-alkaline imbalance which might occur when grains, legumes, and other proteins are used.
- Mung beans in particular, are similar in composition to fruits, are rich in vitamins A, C, and B complex.
GRAINS: Sprouted wheat berries has become a favorite with many who try to follow a natural diet. These sprouts contain vitamins C, E, B complex, magnesium, calcium, phosphorous, sodium, potassium, protein, enzymes, chlorophyll, and possibly B-17. In its cooked form, wheat is unacceptable to some individuals, causing mucus congestion, allergic reaction, and constipation. In its sprouted form, a large portion of starch is converted to simple sugars, making it a wholesome food acceptable to many who would otherwise need to eliminate wheat as a food source.
- Another way to use wheat is to grow the whole wheat berries as grass. The chlorophyll of wheat grass is very high. The wheat grass should be chewed to obtain the juice, discarding the pulp. Special juicers for wheat grass are now on the market.
Another grain amazing grain to sprout is buckwheat,which is rich in lecithin and rutin.
Most SEEDS contain a great deal of phosphorous, an important mineral for spiritual aspirants, who want to increase their alertness and mental abilities. Phosphorous is also necessary for healthy bones and teeth, a fact which makes sprouted seeds desirable for babies and children.
- Sunflower seeds are rich in vitamins B and D and all the essential amino acids.
- Sesame seeds are a rich source of calcium, iron, phosphorous, niacin, and protein.
- Alfalfa, probably the most popular sprouted seed, contains much chlorophyll, as well as vitamins A, B complex, C, D, E, G. K, and U. It also has large amounts of iron, calcium, phosphorous, and sulphur.
What if I don’t want to sprout?
Then get yourself equipped with some of these amazing products who have done a fabulous job for you!
Navitas Naturals – Sprouted flax and chia seeds
Sha Sha Bio Buds - (lentils, adzuki beans)
Bio Live – legume, rice and seed mixes, sprouted flax powders
Giddy Yoyo – pea shoots and sunflower sprouts – local to Toronto and will deliver to your door!
Wild Wood Tofu - Sprouted Tofu and Tempeh
See my latest ebook Purely Fit – that has a whole section on sprouts + some delicious recipes!
Or join my Raw Essentials Class this spring and learn how to do this hands on!
Soaking vs. Sprouting
When you soak a nut, grain, seed or legume you are making it easier to digest because you are neutralizing phytic acids (which is the indigestible component of grains and seeds). So when they are soaked, they become easier to digest and absorb.
It is possible to soak without sprouting. You can soak your grains before you cook them, for example soak brown rice or quinoa for 1 hour up to 8 hours before it is being cooked. Or you can soak whole rolled oats overnight and enjoy them the next morning either at room temperature or warmed up.
Just in time for fall, I thought I would give you a head start with some mouth-watering recipes that feature, yours truly, The Butternut Squash. The name of this veggie, sure isn’t anything to capture audiences – but it’s taste is magnificent. Beaming with yellow-orange goodness, it is soft, moist, tender, sweet and just so incredibly good for you! If squash isn’t already part of your regular meals, try to make it one this fall!
Most people are afraid to approach a squash, it is big, hard and has a tough skin. But that is no reason to shy away. The simplest way to approach a squash is to first, cut it in half width-wise or length-wise – scoop out the seeds and roast it in the oven face down for about and hour. From there you have soft squash that you can scoop away from the skin to make soup, dips, desserts or a mashed side dish or you can eat it straight out of it like a bowl (see below).
Otherwise, you can cut the whole squash up into sizable chunks and start to peel the skin off. Then you can cut your squash into cubes and roast them in the oven like “fries” and then eat them as is, or add them into pilafs and other dishes.
By the way, squash skin is completely edible and full of fiber and nutrients !
WAY # 1:
Adding baked or roasted squash cubes or pieces into a recipe.
I did this last week in my Millet Garden Bowl. Where squash is just an accent or addition to the recipe for texture, colour and flavour. This is easy and can be done to other recipes such as soups, noodles, grain salads, and desserts!
WAY # 2:
Putting your meal inside of half a squash.
Since most squash’s including acorn, butternut, buttercup etc… are rather large, they can act as an amazing vessel for your meal. It also looks really elegant and gourmet! What can be more fun than eating your bowl?
Half a squash filled with wild rice with fresh herbs (recipe below)
WAY # 3:
Blending squash into a recipe.
Whether it is a dip or a soup, butternut squash is creamy, smoothie and consistent. Once blended, it adds such a delicate sweetness throughout your entire recipe.
Sprouted wrap with roasted squash dip (recipe below) topped with kale, sprouts, beets and carrots!
What’s squash got, that I want?
1 cup of baked squash as 145% of your daily recommended vitamin A, and is one of the top sources for alpha and beta carotene.
Squash usually isn’t thought of as being a high-fat vegetable, but it contains a healthy amount of anti-inflammatory omega-3 fats.
Healthy, energy-sustaining complex carbohydrates and B-vitamins help to balance blood sugar.
Lots of flu-fighting vitamin C helps get you through the season without the sniffles.
Share with Us!
What’s your favourite Root Veggie?
Do you love butternut squash? Why?
What do you make with squash?
Wild Rice with Herbs
1/2 cup brown rice, cooked
1/2 cup wild rice, cooked
1 1/2 cups water
1 tbsp olive oil
1 cup green beans, chopped
1/2 cup kale, chopped
2 green onions, chopped
2 tablespoons chopped fresh, thyme, parsley, rosemary
1/4 cup unsweetened cranberries
1/4 cup pinenuts
1/4 cup cooked white beans
1. Rinse and drain wild and brown rice. Place in pot and dry toast for 1-2 minutes. Add in water, bring to a boil and simmer for 45 minutes.
2. In a separate pan, add in olive oil on low heat and lightly saute green beans for 1-3 minutes. Add in kale and green onions and stir until softened and turn off heat.
3. Stir in fresh herbs and combine all the vegetables along with cranberries and pinenuts.
4. Once the rice is cooked and has absorbed all the water, combined with vegetables, herbs and cranberry mixture.
5. Add in white beans and toss in a large bowl.
Roasted Squash & White Bean Dip
1 cup roasted (with olive oil and sea salt) squash, cubed
2 cups cooked white beans
2 tbsp tahini
1 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp turmeric
1 clove garlic
1 tbsp olive oil
1/4 tsp sea salt
1/2 cup bean cooking liquid or water
1. Combine cooked white beans and squash into food processor and puree for 1 minute to combine.
2. Add in remaining ingredient and continue to pulse until a creamy, thick texture is derived.
3. Add sea salt and other herbs to taste.
Serve in a wrap with fresh veggies, eat with raw veggies, flatbread, corn chips, tortillas. Top it on pasta, cooked grains or steamed vegetables.
I am continuously on the look out for great products that I want to support and promote – especially when it comes to chocolate. Mark and Bridgette have been at it for the last few years and have brought their love for chocolate to life.
They have masterfully created a line of raw chocolate bars that are made with Love and Gratitude, 70% plus pure cacao paste, chocolate, pure cane sugar and crafted essence extracts for each bar. Whether mocha, mint, ginger, orange, spice or just plain delicious original.
Why Giddy Chocolate?
As you know, I am not one for packaged products, but there are a few that I endorse and think are a great addition to a balanced lifestyle. Especially when it comes to chocolate. Since most commercial chocolate bars are just not an option (being loaded with sugar, dairy and containing cocoa that is devoid of any nutrition), why not get your hands on some pure giddy love. Carry them around in your purse or car (though not on a hot summer day). Keep them in your freezer, bring them to a movie, share with a friend – or mix into recipes.
I like to crumble my mint giddy yoyo bar on top of some Coconut Bliss ice cream for a chocolate – minty dessert. I have also crumbled down the original and ginger to top on some strawberries for a refreshing and tasty dessert. Your options are limitless.
The giddy yoyo chocolate is from the most pristine and exotic lands. They way the cacao processed is minimally invasive keeping the cacao as intact and as pure as possible. There is no side effects or strong caffeine-like reactions from consuming giddy yoyo, just pure enjoyment. To find out more see here.
The cacao bean is one of nature’s highest sources of magnesium and antioxidants, it is also high in iron, vitamin C, zinc, manganese, chromium, copper and fiber. Kind of like a multi-vitamin? It is also beneficial to your cardiovascular system, prevents against cancer, can balance blood sugar, lower cholesterol and makes you happy as cacao contains trytophan which is key for mood-enhancing and overall feeling good!
Now that you know why chocolate is so good for you, I want you to have the chance to try one of these amazing bars. I only have a few bars to give away, so please tell me why you are worthy of a giddy yoyo bar.
What you need to do to win is:
Comment below – tell me why you love chocolate or why you want to try some giddy yoyo.
Who ever shows the most activity and the most love – will win one of the 6 bars that I have to give away.