Beet Smoothie Bowl

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Total: 5 min - Prep: 5 min 

 Diet: Vegan, vegetarian and gluten free

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Ingredients

  • 2/3 cup of frozen Beets
  • 1/2 cup of  frozen raspberries 
  • 1 large ripe banana 
  • 1 tbs of honey 
  • 1 tbs of Yoso unsweetened almond and cashew yogurt 
  • 5-6 of ice cubes
  • 1/2 cup of coconut water
  • 1 tbs of collagen
  • 1 scoop of vega Bodacious Berry protein powder

Topping

  • Blueberry 
  • Chia seeds
  • Raspberries 
  • coconut flakes 
  • Hemp seeds 

Steps

  1.  Combine beets, raspberries, banana, honey, yogurt, coconut water, collagen, berry protin powder.  Blend everything until smooth - add ice as needed to reach desired thickness and consistency
  2.  Pour smoothie into a bowl and serve 

Coconut Butter Fat Balls

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Total: 10 min - Prep: 10 min 

 Diet: Vegan, vegetarian and sugar free 

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Ingredients 

  • 1 cup of medjool dates (pitted)
  • 1 cup coconut shreds
  • 1/2 c. Coconut oil, melted
  • 4 tbs of cup coconut butter
  • 1/2 cup cashews
  • 1/4 cup sunflower seeds
  • 1/2 cup almonds
  • 1 tbsp cacao nibs
  • 1/4 cup pepitas
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/3 c. almond milk

Steps

1. Blend everything in a food processor until dough is achieved. 

2. Roll into bite sized balls then lay flat on a air-tight container and freeze. 

3. Remove from freezer and let thaw 6 minutes before eating 

Original recipe from Lee From America

Pink Raspberries Smoothie Bowl

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Total: 5 min - Prep: 5 min 

 Diet: Vegan, vegetarian and gluten free

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Ingredient

  • 2 cups of frozen raspberries
  • 1 large ripe bananas, cut into chunks and frozen
  • 2/3  cup of coconut water
  • 1/3 cup of yogurt 
  • 2 tbs of collagen powder
  • 1 tbs of honey 
  • 1 scoop of vega Bodacious Berry protein powder
  • 5-6 cubic of ice 

Topping

  • Hemp seeds 
  • Frozen raspberries 
  • Coconut flakes

Steps

1. Combine raspberries, banana, coconut water, yogurt, collagen, honey, and protein powder. Blend until smooth, and add ice to achieve desired thickness.  

2. Pour smoothie into a bowl, and top with hemp seed, frozen raspberries and coconut flakes

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Activated Charcoal Smoothie Bowl

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Total: 5 min - Prep: 5 min 

 Diet: Vegan, vegetarian and gluten free

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Ingredients

  • 1 cup frozen mango 
  • 1 large ripe banana 
  • 1 tbs of honey 
  • 2 tbs of Yoso unsweetened almond and cashew yogurt 
  • 5-6 of ice cubes
  • 1/2 cup of coconut water
  • 1 to 2 tbs of activated charcoal 

Steps

  1.  Combine mango, banana, honey, yogurt, coconut water and activated charcoal. Blend until smooth - add ice as needed to reach desired thickness and consistency
  2.  Pour smoothie into a bowl and serve 
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Minimal Wellness: Cashew Coconut Ball

 By: Becca Shern

By: Becca Shern

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  • By: Becca Shern, RDN
  • Total: 30 min - Prep: 30 min 
  •  Diet: Vegan, vegetarian and gluten free

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Ingredients

  • ½ cup raw cashews
  • ½ cup sliced almonds
  • ½ cup salted macadamia nuts
  • 1 cup shredded unsweetened coconut
  • 2 pitted and diced medjool dates
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • ½ cup melted coconut butter/mana
  • ½ cup collagen protein powder
  • ½ cup cashew butter
  • ¼ cup almond milk
  • Optional: Stevia. I don't include it as I think their subtle sweetness is perfect without it. But if you want them sweeter try the equivalent to 2 Tsp sugar — the actual amount needed will vary depending on what type of stevia you use.

Instructions

  1. Place the nuts and coconut into a food processor and pulse until the nuts are chopped very fine.
  2. Add in the diced dates and pulse until incorporated.
  3. Sprinkle in the cinnamon and pulse again.
  4. Add the melted coconut butter, collagen protein powder, cashew butter and pulse a few times to partially incorporate. The dough will be thick, so you may need to scrape down the sides and bottom of your food processor a few times to get it all mixed in.
  5. Finally, run the food processor while slowly adding the almond milk and continue running the processor until the dough is homogenous.
  6. Set out a sheet tray for forming the balls. Tip: make sure the tray will fit flat in your freezer. If it doesn't use another flat surfaced kitchen item like a plate or two. You'll need to freeze the balls solid before transferring them to a container for storage.
  7. Using a tablespoon, scoop out some dough and roll it with your hands into a ball.
  8. Place formed balls onto the sheet tray.
  9. Place all formed balls into freezer to freeze solid (about 1 hour) then you can transfer them to a storage container.

Minimalwellness.com is the source for blog posts, recipes, information on coaching services, and my contact information. I'm also active on social media (@minimalwellness), my preferred platform is Instagram, but I'm also on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.

Ultimate Acai-Berry Smoothie

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Total: 5 min - Prep: 5 min 

 Diet: Vegan, vegetarian and gluten free

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Ingredient

  • 3 large ripe bananas
  • ⅓ cup almond milk (optional: coconut water, or yogurt) 
  • 3½ ounces frozen pure unsweetened acai fruit puree
  • 1 tbs of collagen powder
  • Optional: 1 scoop of vega Bodacious Berry protein powder

Topping

  • 1 Tbsp walnut 
  • 1 Tbsp hemp seeds 
  • Blackberry  

Steps

1. Combine banana, acai fruit puree, and almond milk in a blender. Puree until smooth. 

2. Pour smoothie into a bowl, and top with blackberry, hemp seeds and blackberry. 

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Broccoli and Pasta

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Total: 20 min - Prep: 10 min 

Cook: 10 min - Yield: 4 servings

 Diet: Vegan, and vegetarian

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Ingredient

  • Large broccoli (around 2 cups)
  • 12 oz of uncooked deliverd Pasta
  • Spring onions
  • 3 Jalapeño pepper
  • 3 large carrots ribboned with a vegetable peeler
  • 1 or 2 cups of walnuts
  • 2 tbsp of coconut oil
  • 1 tbsp of Curry 
  • 2 tbsp of tumeric 
  • 3 tbsp of chinese five spices 
  • Salt and pepper to taste 
  • 2 tbsp water

Equipments

  • Blender or food processors 

Steps

1. Add pasta in a pot of boiling water and cook until al dente. Drain pasta, and set aside. 

2. While your pasta is cooking place broccoli, coconut oil,  water, salt, and pepper in a blender or food processor. Pulse for about a minute. Taste it. Add more olive oil or water if it feels too dry, and salt & pepper according to taste.

3. Chop spring onion, carrots and jalapeño pepper into desired shape and place in a mixing bowl, add coconut oil, curry, turmeric, and Chinese five spices. Mix all spices with carrots and place aside. 

4. In cooking pot or mixing bowl place cooked pasta, and carrots, and mix with broccoli pesto. Taste for salt and and add oil as desired

5. Serve with walnut to top it off and drizzle of coconut or virgin olive  oil. 

 

  

Blueberry Veggie Smoothie

 By: kyrholistics

By: kyrholistics

Continuing with our interview with Kyra Ann (IG:kyrholistics) from last week, down below she shares where she gets her inspiration, favor Instagrammers and smoothie.

Where do you get recipe inspiration?

Definitely from Instagram. There are so many talented and intelligent women out there that have inspired me to be a better and healthier eater. Every day I gain inspiration from the creations of others and often will try their recipes or will spin off and make my own!

Favorite dish to make?

I love making a huge, thick, packed veggie smoothie. I enjoy putting so many micro nutrients into one meal and having it taste almost like dessert. It’s pure bliss.

Favorite self-care ritual?

I love taking a warm bath with essential oils diffusing and soft music playing. Then, after my bath I do some dry brushing, coconut oil on my skin, and relax with my Himalayan salt lamp on and a good book. I always feel so energized & ready for anything afterward.

Where do you go food shopping?

I have a creepy love for grocery shopping and find excuses to go at least twice a week. I usually just go to my local Smiths Marketplace (Kroger) because they are affordable and have tons of organic options. I buy supplements and anything I can’t find there at my local health food store Good Earth. My favorite is if I can find my produce at a local farmers market! Definitely loving that this summer.

Who is (are) your favorite Food Instagrammers that you follow?

One of the first foodies I started following on instagram was Blair, @balancewithb. I have learned so much from her and I still refer to her blog often for recipes. The other instagram & podcast that really helped me was Jesse and Marni from @theultimatehealthpodcast. I have so many beautiful friends I’ve met in the health world that I follow regularly know I don’t think I could even narrow them down!

What is a big food/health trend that you’re currently into?

Eating more of a grain free diet. It happens to be a trend but actually really works for my body because of my specific sensitivities.

Blueberry veggie smoothie

12-16 oz unsweetened almond milk

1 c frozen steamed cauliflower

4 frozen zucchini chunks (1 inch)

1/4 c frozen mashed sweet potato

1/2 c frozen spinach

1/2 frozen banana

1 c frozen blueberries

1 tbsp sunflower seed butter (or any nut butter)

1 tbsp ground flax seed

1 tbsp hemp hearts

dash cinnamon

 

Hemp Seed Avocado Salad

So, I am not big on salad, but if I find a good salad I have no problem with eating it. But I though I'd try something different and make a simple salad.  So I hope you enjoy simple, fresh, healthy and flavorful recipe. This salad is simple, requiring less than 30 minutes to put together

Ingredients: 

  • 5-6 ounces of curly kale, torn or chopped, large stems removed
  • 1 cup (50 g) fresh bread crumbs
  • 1/2 Tbsp + 1/2 Tbsp olive oil, divided
  • 1/2 large lemon, juiced
  • Pinch each salt and pepper
  • 2 Tbsp (20 g)  hemp seeds
  • 1 Tomato
  • 1 Avcado

Direction

  1. Add kale to a large mixing bowl with lemon juice and1/2 Tbsp olive oil. Use your hands to massage the kale and break down its texture a bit. Once done, place on serving plat.
  2. To the kale add sliced tomato, cucumber, avocado and hemp seeds.
  3. This salad makes an excellent side dish to meals like veggie burgers, and pizza. You always add your protein of choice to make it a more substantial entree.
  4. Best when fresh. Store leftovers in the refrigerator for up to a few days.
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What the heck is Matcha tea?

 IG:leefromamerica

IG:leefromamerica

Matcha, matcha, matcha, lately Matcha tea is all the craze among health and wellness bloggers. It seem like you can't check your instangram accounts lately without seeing the bright green color of matcha-infused lattes, cakes, and smoothies. For tea lover like myself, it's great!! there is nothing like a good health trend that doesn't involve starving yourself or depriving yourself in hope of losing weight. Put simply, the world has gone bonkers for matcha,  from matcha latte, smoothie,  brownies, energy balls to cake. Unless unless you've been living under a rock, you've definitely noticed this new craze.  I am proud to say that I am a part of this matcha cult. For this post I thought I'd give you guys a little breakdown to what is matcha green tea, and how I make my morning matcha latte.

For this specif pose I've decided not to offer the health benefits of the tea, but there are many benefits associated with matcha tea. If you're really interested in learning more about the tea, its historical background and others, I'd recommand reading the following Books: Matcha: A Lifestyle Post - Matcha - The Matcha Miracle: Boost Energy, Focus and Health with Green Tea Powder

So what's Matcha?

Let’s start with the basics, what is matcha tea? matcha green tea is delicate tea leaf variety typically grown and processed in Japan. Matcha tea is typically used in Japanese tea ceremonies. The green tea are often shaded from the sun for few weeks of their growth, which help increasing the chlorophyll content and creating a gorgeous green color. Then, the leaves are carefully ground with stone grinding wheels to produce a fine powder. The powder can then be used to brew an antioxidant rich frothy green tea or in recipes like smoothies or baking.

 

Matcha Latte

Okay, lets talk about making that morning matcha latte

Ingredients

  • 1 cup unsweetened plant-based milk (hemp seed milk, soy, or almond)
  • 1 tsp matcha powder
  • 1 tsp moringa powder (optional)
  • 1 tsp raw organic coconut butter
  • 1 tsp collegan powder
  • ¼ tsp Honey (optional)

Instructions

  1. Combine milk, matcha, collegan, coconut butter, honey and moringa powder (optional) in a small in blender. Blend until smooth and creamy. Once it's done, set it aside.
  2. While the matcha is blending make sure to boil a cup of water in a kettle.
  3. Pour the matcha into a mug and add your boiled water. Serve immediately and enjoy!!!

Matcha Energy Balls

So one of my biggest weakness is my sweet tooth, which makes it very difficult to stay healthy or eat healthy. My kryptonite is anything with sugar (gummbarries, jellybeans, jujubes, win gums etc..) and the list goes on. To curve this sugar addiction I often make energy balls. Energy balls are the perfect snack to have around when you have sweet tooth like myself or when you're craving something sweet but healthy. Each providea little of fiber, protein, healthy fat, and natural sugars for an energy boost

Ingredients

  • 1 cup of pruns
  • 1 cup gluten free oats
  • 1/2 cup water or almond milk or hemp seed milk
  • 1/4 cup walnuts
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp nutmeg
  • 1 Cup almond Butter
  • 2 tsp chia seeds
  • 1 tsp coconut oil
  • 1 tsp Artisana, Organics, Raw Coconut Butter)
  • 1 tsp collagen powder
  • 2 tsp of honey
  • 1 cup of Brookside dark brookside dark chocolate pomegranate (Optional: or vegan chocolate)

Optional Topping

  • Chia seeds
  • Matcha powder
  • Hemp seeds
  • Quinoa
  • Cocoa powder
  • pistachio

Direction

1. Start by placing the pruns, almond butter, honey, coconut butter, and milk/water in a blender or food processor. Process the pruns until small pieces forms and they're sticky. Empty into a bowl and set aside.

2. Place your chocolates bits into food processor until they're in small pieces, but not as fine as flour. Empty into a small bowl and set it aside

3. In food processor blend/process the rest of the ingredients, coconut oil, walnuts, cinnamon, chia seeds, quinoa, hemp seeds, collegen powder, cinnamon, and nutmeg.

4. A mixing bowl, add the mixed pruns, dark chocolate and coconut oil, walnuts, cinnamon, chia seeds, quinoa, hemp seeds, collegen powder, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Using your hand to mix everything together, and make sure that it's sticky or you're able to form a ball. Add a little of honey to make it easy to make the balls.

5. Scoop out round tablespoon amounts and using your hands to roll into little balls in the palms of your hands. Then rolled into matcha powder, enjoy immediately orstore in the fridgefor 3-4 hours or overnight.

Bite and enjoy! just try not to eat them all at once!

 Photo IG: theminimalistbaker

Photo IG: theminimalistbaker

Matcha Smoothie

If you're a fan of the unicorn food craze - but don't want to spend money on unhealthy surgery drinks then thisone is for you. This is a healthy take on a beautiful blended drinks that perfect for the summer. This classic, but slightly sweeten smoothie is a great substitution. The smoothie is smooth, thick,  creamy and full of all the nutrition you need.

Ingredients

  • 1 Ataulfo manago
  • 1 cup of unsweetened almond milk
  • 1 unsweetened cup of vanilla yogurt
  • 1 cup of Strawberry
  • 2 tsp of Matcha green tea powder
  • 1 tsp of Moringa powder
  • peeled, sliced ripe bananas
  • 1 cup of Chai seeds

Topping optional

  • Fresh Berries
  • Matcha
  • Vanilla yogurt
  • Coconut flake
  • Banana slices
  • Chia Seeds

Direction:

  1. Add manago, almond milk and banana to a blender and blend on high until creamy and smooth. Once smoothie, set it aside or pour into the bowl or cup.
  2. Whip your Chai seeds with almond milk until it reaches its desire texture
  3. Add vanilla yogurt, almond milk and strawberry in a blender, let blend until smooth and creamy. Again set it aside.
  4. In a blender add almond milk, banana, morigina and matcha.
  5. If serving in a mason jar or cup, pour your mango, chia seeds, and mango again. Top the mango with little of vanilla yogurt, and Moriga and matcha.
  6. Best when fresh, though leftovers keep well sealed in the refrigerator up to 24 hours.
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Cinnamon Spiced Chickpeas Salad Bowl

What can I say, if you've read the previous post you probably know about my obsession and love for salad bowl. I can talk forever about salad bowl, but the more I do it I becoming to recognize that perhaps strong inclination toward it is attributed to the simplicity of the dish. It is the ultimate minimalist's dish because it's simple and there is no clutter with it, the ingredients are simple, and natural.

I was in need of a quick lunch today that took less then 30 minutes, so I decided to make another salad bowl. By far this is probably one of my favorite salad bowl recipe I've developed - this is so addictive and SO easy to make too. The funny part I accidentally put cinnamon in the chickpeas thinking it was cumin, and I must say, it was a great mistake because it made the dish just taste some much better, the balance between the spices (cinnamon, cumin, turmeric, and Pataks - madras curry past), made the flavor and texture of the dish ten times better.

Ingredients

  • Canned Chickpeas
  • Half Tomato (diced)
  • Handful of arugula green
  • 1 Red bell pepper (diced)
  • 1 Avocado
  • 1 tsp coconut oil
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 2 tsp Pataks - madras curry past
  • Lime

Direction

1. Heat 1 tsp coconut in a cooking, add wash/rinsed chickpeas , and season with turmeric, cinnamon, and cumin. Let it cook for 5 minutes. Add 2 tsp of madras curry past, and let it cook for another five minutes. Set it aside.

2. In serving bowl, place your diced tomato, red bell pepper, avocado, and arugula green. Season with coconut oil, little of cumin, cinnamon, and drizzle with lime. You can also season each of the ingredients separately and then assemble all the ingredients together in a clean mixing bowl for that perfect Instagram photo

3. Add chickpeas to the green bowl and serve warm. It should make a serving of one, but you can always modify to fit the number of people.

 

 

 

    Vegan Mushroom Salad Bowl

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    Ah .... bowls bowls bowls! I can't get enough of them. If there is one thingI cold live off for the rest of my life, I'd say a mixture of plant-based bowl seems like a logical answer. I love salad bowl because of how easy, simple and affordable they are. One doesn't have to be an expert in cooking to be able to make a mean and delicious salad bowl. From the meat eater to the gluten free lover salad bowl does not discriminate, it is the one thing that everyone can love.

    So without any further distraction, here is a simple salad bowl

    Ingredients

    • Portobello mushroom - sliced into strips
    • Chickpeas (canned optional)
    • Half red bell pepper
    • Half green apple (diced into desirable shape)
    • 1 avocado
    • 1 tbs cumin
    • 1 tsb turmeric
    • 1 tsb of coconut oil or olive oil
    • Pitch of salt
    • Lime

    Direction

    1. Prepare the arugula green by washing it, season with salt, lime and coconut or olive oil. Set aside.

    2. In a skillet or cooking pan over high heat, add coconut oil, and mushroom. Season with cumin, and turmeric. Let it saute for 5 minutes, add diced green apple and let it saute for another 5 minutes. Once done, set it aside.

    3. With the pan still hot, add the chickpeas season with turmeric, cumin, salt and lime. Let it cook for 5 minutes.

    4. With everything cooked and cooled down, assembled the bowl with the arugula green acting as your base, decorate the bowl with the cooked mushroom, apple, red bell pepper, and avocado. Top with lime and olive oil.

     

    Almond Butter and Strawberry Smoothie

    Although this weird looking smoothie may not look attractive, it is however delicious, energizing and will leave you wanting more. This concocation has everything your body needs on a slow Sunday morning or right after a workout - it has abundance of protein and healthy fat that will fill you up and keep you satisfied, all of this nutritious benefits comes from one ingredient - Almond Butter. As always this smoothie contains no sugar, but tumeric which I often used a substitute for sugar. Turmeric arehighly known for their Anti-inflammatories qualities. For those with a sweet tooth like myself I find that turmeric is a great substitute for sugar.

    This is a simple, natural and minimal recipe that takes less than 10 minutes to do, especially if you have a busy morning or day that doesn't allow you to cook breakfast. For those like myself that may not consume as much protein or calories in the morning, this recipe is fantastic and a great way to get those needed nutrition benefits in a single serving.

    Ingredients

    • 1 cup of frozen strawberries
    • 2-Tbsp plain almond butter (organic or non-organic)
    • 1/2 filtered water
    •  1 Tbsp of turmeric powder

    Direction

    1. Addstrawberries into blender, water, almond butter and turmeric and blend until the mixture reaches the desired consistency

    Turmeric and Spinach Smoothie

    Lately I've been trying to find ways to eat more green vegetables and fruits - with school and work sometimes it's easy to get into ruts especially when you have excess for pretty much not eating healthy. Lately I've been in that rut where I'll do my grocery shopping and the only green I get is a banana, sometimes I go a whole week without eating a single fruit or vegetable.

    So, to get of that rut, lately I've been waking up an hour early (6:00-6:30am) and make myself a green smoothie. To make thins even easy I try to keep it as simple and minimal as much as possible. If there is one thing I hate is when people put what seems sometimes like million of items in their smoothie (e.g., nets, seed butter, Maca, Cacao, Protein powder, banana powder etc...) and the list goes on and on.

    Having to deal with clutter and junk (foods, stuff, advice, excuses, advertisement, stress etc...) the last thing I want to do in the morning is stress out about what I should be putting in my smoothie. Why clutter your morning and breakfast with junk when you can keep it simple and start the day with one less junk. After all sometimes the simplest dish are often the most delicious dish.

    I am in love with this simple smoothie, it's simple and delicious; all you need is Banana, Spinach and Turmeric and honey if you want the sweet flavor, or mask the taste of spinach. The one thing I always put in my smoothie is TURMERIC, I absolute love it. Aside from the anti-inflammatory benefits and it also contains curcumin which is a powerful antioxidant. If you have a sweet tooth like make and can't have a smoothie without honey, I find that turmeric is great substitute because it masks the strong taste of the green fruit or vegetable, but it also has sweet/ginger like taste to it.

    Ingredients

    • 1 small/medium or large ripe fresh banana
    • 1 large handful spinach* (organic when possible
    • 2/3 cup (180 ml) filtered water
    •  1 Tbsp of turmeric powder
    • optional: 1 Tbsp (15 ml) wildflower honey

    Direction

    1. Add all ingredients (Banana, Spinach, and Turmeric)
    2. Add water and honey if needed be
    3. Blend everything in high-speed blender until smooth. Serve and enjoy!

    Rolled Oat with Almond Butter

    Given my love and strong obsession with oatmeal as a fuel to start the day I found a way to make it less dull and tasteless by adding my favorite fruits. This has resulted in the most amazing breakfast. I read somewhere that one way to make yourself wake up early was to have to plan an awesome breakfast that you could have the next morning. This allows you to have something to look forward to the next day but also acts a good motivation to get up either 5am or 6 am. This awesome breakfast has been my motivation for those days when I had work 6 am and I had to wake up by 5 am.

    This almond butter oatmeal is full of nutritious you need to start the day, starting with fig which is a great source of fiber and full of vitamins and mineral. For those who have sweet tooth fig is not only a healthy and versatile ingredient but it can add a burst of sweetness. To top it with walnut which is known to be a great source of antioxidants and an excellent brain food.

    Ingredients:

    • 1/2  cup rolled oats (Option: gluten free, or ancient grain organic oatmeal)
    • 1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk 
    • 2 tablespoon Almond butter (creamy or crunchy)
    • 1 tablespoon maple syrup (or sub coconut sugar, organic brown sugar, or stevia to taste)

    Toppings

    • Fig, mango, pepitas seeds, dried cherries, and walnut 
    • Granola

     Direction:

    • Stovetop: Bring the water, add the rolled oats, reduce heat, and cook 10-20 minutes. Stir occasionally. Cover and remove from heat and let stand a few minutes. 
    • Microwave: In a large bowl, combine 1/2 cup rolled oats and 1/1 cup of unsweetened almond milk. Microwave for one minute and 30 seconds. Stir oats and microwave another 30 seconds. Cover and let stand 3 minutes.
    •  Sprinkle honey and decorate with your choice of toppings. 

    Roasted Butternut Squash Soup

    “What good is the warmth of summer, without the cold of winter to give it sweetness.” John Steinbeck

    With winter just around the corner it is time for butternut squash, any soup is perfect for the winter season especially on a cold or snowy day. While winter hasn’t arrived here yet I can’t help but feel the need to make squash soup. So here is my favorite roasted butternut squash soup. I know how challenging it can be sometimes to cut raw squash so here is a link on how-to Peel and Cut a Butternut Squash

    Ingredients 

    • 2 tablespoon of olive oil
    • 1 large butternut squash (about 3 1/2 lbs)
    • 1 red onion, diced
    • ¼ tsp. ground turmeric
    • ¼ Curry powder
    • 1 ¼ Grounded cumin
    • 4-5 cups low sodium vegetable broth, or water
    • Salt and pepper, to taste

    Serving options:

    • A drizzle of olive oil 
    • Roasted squash seeds, or pepitas seeds 

    Direction:

    • Preheat oven to 375°F. and line a baking sheet with aluminum foil. Cut the squash in half and scoop out the seeds.
    • Place diced squash on the baking sheet and brush lightly with olive oil, sprinkle with salt, turmeric, cumin and curry, bake for 40-50 minutes or until the squash is tender. Remove from Oven and let it cool off.
    • While the squash is baking or cooling off in a large cooking pot heat the oil over medium high heat, mix in onion season with cumin, turmeric and curry. Let it cook for about 10-20 minutes until the onion is tender or golden brown.
    • After 20 minutes add the squash and vegetable broth and bring to boil. Let it cook
    • Oil baking sheet. Place squash, cut side down, on baking sheet. Bake until squash is very soft, about 50 minutes. Using paring knife, remove peel from squash; discard peel. Cut squash into 2-inch pieces. Heat oil in heavy large pot over medium-low heat. Mix in onion, brown sugar, ginger, garlic and cinnamon. Cover pot and cook until onion is tender, about 15 minutes. Add squash and 5 cups chicken broth. Bring to boil. Reduce heat to medium-low. Cover and simmer 10 minutes. Discard cinnamon.
    • Working in batches, purée soup in blender. (Can be prepared 1 day ahead. Cool slightly. Cover and refrigerate.) Return soup to pot. Season soup with salt and pepper. Bring to simmer, thinning soup with more broth if necessary. Ladle into bowls. Sprinkle with parsley and serve.

    A Taste of Home: Curry Lentil Cauliflower Soup

    What are the fundamental or essential things in your life that reminds you of home? For many travelers or nomads the essential of their live are comfort home food.  The further they travel the more these comfort food absences become apparent. While I am not much of traveler or consider myself a nomad among the many essential in my life or comfort food that remains me of where I was born and raised for the early years of my childhood is lentil. Strange as it maybe, these essential food or comfort food have stories and deeper meaning; they are a part of who we are. Lentil brings me back to third grade in North Sudan; my holder cousin who is a year older than me waiting in line during lunchtime for both of us. While in class I can smell the lentil soup, its always-green lentil. Now, every time I have lentil or cook lentil it brings me back to that early childhood of being 8 years old, in all catholic middle school with my dark blue and white uniform; with my cousin always finishing class before me and waiting in line for both us during lunch time. The essential of our lives are never the big things, many time s they are the simple things, things that we don’t really look at as being potent. However, these essential of fundamental become potent when they are no longer accessible. But as far as we travel we can always remake the essential. What are the essential in your life?

    Here is a take on my essential; this is a modification of Angela Liddon The Oh she Gloss Cookbook Indian Lentil-Cauliflower Soup

    Ingredients:

    • 1-tablespoon olive oil
    • 1 yellow onion
    • 1 tablespoon minced peeled fresh ginger
    • 3 tablespoons hot curry powder
    • 1 ½ tablespoons ground coriander
    • 1 ½ tablespoon cumin
    • 1 ½ tablespoon black pepper
    • ¾ tablespoon salt
    • 3 cups of vegetable broth
    • 1 cup uncooked red lentils- rinsed and drained
    • 1 medium cauliflower, chopped into bite-size florets
    • 2 mediums size white potato, peeled and diced
    • 2-handful spinach
    • Pepitas seeds

    Direction:

    • In a large cooking pot hear the olive oil over medium heat. Add onion, ginger and potato. Salute for 10 minutes until translucent
    •  Add curry, cumin, coriander, salt and pepper. Saute for another 5 minutes.
    •  Add both broth and lentil. Bring the mixture to low boil and let it cook for another 20 minutes
    • Stir in the cauliflower, cover and reduce heat to low medium and let it simmer for another 15 minutes.
    • Add more spices as desired.
    • Add spinach and let it cook for another 5 minutes on low heat.
    •   Serve the soup in a bowl and top with pepitas seeds

    Linguine with Caramelized Onions

    There is something about reading a GOOD book and having to think and analyze certain points or even a simple quote in the book. I am currently on my way to finishing John Steinbeck’s East of Eden, and this morning I was once again awed by the beauty of his writing. The First book I read of Steinbeck was Of Mice and Men, while it was five or six years ago I can still remember certain quotes in the book and still find myself awed at his writing. While I was writing this morning I was embraced by this beautiful quote which I think a lot of us forget sometimes, the fact that we always have a choice; the notion of free choice over evil, a symbolic of optimism that is central to the human condition that we overlook by rendering ourselves as being powerless or lacking a choice.

    “But the Hebrew word, the word timshel ‘thou mayest – that gives a choice. It might be the most important word in the world. That says the way is open …….I have no bent toward gods. But I have a new love for that glittering instrument, the human soul. It is lovely and unique thing in the universe. It is always attacked and never destroyed – because ‘thou mayest.”’

    This quote made my morning and probably my day; we always have a choice regardless of where you are in life you always have a choice, the choice to do evil or to do good. As Hannah Arendt once wrote no one is completely powerless, which is another central aspect of the human condition, we are never powerless regardless of how powerless or out of control we sometimes feel. 

    Getting off that Steinbeck cloud I had a chance today after work to make this quick pasta recipe that only took 45 minutes. This is a simple and quick recipe that anyone can make, the ingredients are simple and health, above all you can either make it vegan or not given the simplicity and flexibility of the recipe

    Ingredients: 

    • 8 oz fresh Linguine
    • 2 handful of baby Spinach
    • 2 cups of Brussels Sprouts
    • 1/2 cup parmasean cheese + additional for serving
    • 2 medium red onion, chopped
    • 2 tbs olive oil, divided
    • 1 tablespoon of garlic powder
    • 2 tablespoon of rosemary
    • salt and pepper
    • Red wine

    Direction

    • In a large pot add water, oil and salt. Bring it to boil, add pasta. Cook until pasta is al dente. 20-25 minutes. 
    • In a skillet over medium hear warm 1 tbs olive oil, addd onions, and garlic powder, let it cook for 20 minutes. Stir onion evert now and then for, add little of red wine and water. Let it cook until blonde in colour. Set it aside. 
    • In another skillet over medium heat add 1 tbs olive oil, add Brussels Sprouts season with salt, pepper, rosemary, and garlic powder. Let it cook for 20 - 25 minutes until golden brown. Once done set it aside. 
    • In another skillet, add olive oil, when hot add baby spinach, garlic powder, salt and pepper. Sauté spinach until wilted, about 6 minutes. 
    •  Add the cooked past, Caramelized onion and Brussels Sprout with the baby spinach. Add parmesan cheese until cheese is melted ad the sauce coats the pasta and spinach