Coconut Yogurt Recipe

When I was younger I used to looooooooove yogurt! Then as I got older, my relationship with milk products changed. They made me, let’s say “sick,” if ya know what I mean… And then I realized how messed up the dairy industry was so I didn’t want to take part in that, but I did miss all those glorious products. Finally, years later, they have coconut yogurt products available. Sadly, most of them are full of ingredients I am either intolerant too, or just wouldn’t want to eat. Then, one glorious day, I finally learned how to make my own yogurt with coconut milk and hello world, it’s a new day!

Let’s just talk about the coconut for a minute. Seriously I think it is one of the healthiest foods in the world. And so versatile. I use coconut oil on pretty much everything….. like everything ๐Ÿ˜‰ But I digress.ย  Coconut milk, and specifically the coconut cream from the can, is heavenly. Its so creamy and naturally sweet. It’s almost all saturated fat. The healthy kind! Fun fact, they did a study on mice (I know, boo! – I am totally against animal testing) testing a lauric acid, which is a type of MCT found in the coconut, against the microbe (propionibacterium acnes) responsible for acne infections and found out it helped reduce activation of a pathway that influences the inflammation. So anyone suffering from any sort of acne, this would be a great item to add to your diet! Also to note, coconut milk is actually full of healthy vitamins and minerals like manganese, magnesium, copper and phosphorous. It is really high in iron too! Also a decent source of niacin(vitamin B3) and folate!

Ok let’s get on to the recipe! It is so freakin’ easy you will want to make this every week ๐Ÿ™‚

Tools you will need:

  • Large bowl
  • Dish towel
  • Spoon
  • Can opener

Ingredients:

  • 2 cans of Coconut Milk (Organic preferred)
  • 2 capsules of probiotics (I personally use the Genestra brand and it has worked well)
  • Natural sweetener of choice – stevia, maple syrup, coconut sugar, etc (if desired)

Prep:

  • Place the 2 cans of coconut milk in the fridge for a few hours – even overnight if you have the time, so it stiffens and is easier to scoop the cream off the top!

Instructions:

  • Take the 2 cans of coconut milk out of the fridge and remove the lids.
  • Carefully scoop the dense, white cream that has risen to the top out with a spoon and place it in the large bowl. Do that for both cans, leave the watery more clear coconut milk in the can for now.
  • Open the two capsules of probiotics and sprinkle on top of the coconut cream and stir it up really well.
  • Next take your dish cloth and cover the bowl and place it somewhere dark that is safe. I put mine in the cupboard so no curious kitties try to sneak some :p
  • Now leave it sit for approximately 24-48 hours. You can start testing the taste after a day. I found my sweet spot to be about 36 hours.
  • If it tastes sour or weird in any way throw it out! I personally haven’t had any issues like that. I just make sure my bowl is squeaky clean ๐Ÿ™‚
  • You can next add any sweetener you like, and store it in the fridge! It’s ready to eat! I personally like it plain and add fruit and hempseeds to jazz it up, but honestly, it tastes so good you could eat it plain!
  • Make sure you don’t waste the left over coconut milk. I just pour mine into an ice cube tray and once frozen, pop them into smoothies!

If you try this recipe let me know what you think ๐Ÿ™‚

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References

https://www.thesuperfoods.net/coconut/how-and-why-coconut-oil-helps-in-inflammation

http://foodfacts.mercola.com/coconut-milk.html#_edn10

http://nutritiondata.self.com/facts/nut-and-seed-products/3114/2

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Eggplant Curry

Oh the glorious eggplant. We normally just think of it as an emoji used to describe something dirty ๐Ÿ˜ฎ This vegetable is more then just a phallic symbol though! The eggplant has a medley of vitamins and minerals and is a bit higher in Vitamin C, folate and B vitamins. It is also a great source of fiber! The eggplant is packed full of antioxidants, and one in particular: Nansunin. Nansunin is found in the skin of the eggplant, so leave the skin on! It is a free radical scavenger and it fights inflammation and oxidative stress. Bonus! It helps iron become more absorbable and it helps us detox by binding to toxic heavy metals and removing them from the body. Eggplant is a total beauty food so make sure you have it in your diet….. as long as you don’t have issues with night shades!

Here is my eggplant curry recipe! I find it super warming and comforting in the winter ๐Ÿ™‚ Please enjoy and let me know what you think!

You will need a large pot to cook the curry in.

Ingredients:

  • 2 small or 1 medium sized Eggplant
  • 2 Bell Peppers – any colour you like
  • 1 cup dry Chick Peas (or 1 can of Organic Chick Peas – BPA free)
  • 1 medium sized yellow onion
  • 4 cloves of Garlic
  • 1 tsp freshly grated Ginger (dried spice will work if you don’t have fresh)
  • 1 tsp Turmeric
  • 1 1/2 tbsps of Yellow Curry Powder (Madras Curry is my fave)
  • 1 tsp Cumin
  • Cayenne Pepper – optional and as much as you like!
  • Sea Salt to taste
  • 1 cup dry Organic Brown Rice
  • 1 tbsp Avocado Oil
  • 1 1/2 cups of water (give or take a half a cup or so depending on how big or small the eggplants are)
  • 1 cup plain Tomato Sauce

Prep:

  • If you use dry chick peas, make sure you soak them over night, the night before you want to make your curry.

Instructions:

  • Bring a medium size pot of water to boil and toss those soaked chick peas in and cook for 50 minutes – 1 hour. Taste test to make sure they are nice and soft. (I find cooked from dry chick peas taste way better and hold their structure better when cooked in this curry)
  • Get the rice started now so it’s ready when you are finished.
  • Add the avocado oil to the large pot and chop up the onion and garlic and cook until clear and softened.
  • Next toss in the curry powder, turmeric, cumin, cayenne and sea salt. Stir it up!
  • Then toss in the chick peas, egg plant and bell peppers and get them all nice and coated with the spices.
  • Now you can add your water and tomato sauce and stir it up some more.
  • I add the ginger in last because it is more delicate. Stir some more, cover and cook on a medium heat for about 15-20 minutes and you are good to go!

Meal Prep Tip!

Want to have an awesome and comforting lunch to take to work? This recipe usually makes about 4 servings depending on how big those egg plants are! Simply scoop out what you want for dinner and divide the rest up into 3 containers like so, add your rice on the side and voila! Lunch!

For an extra health bonus, bring a table spoon of hemp seeds and add to your curry after you have heated it up.

I stored the hemp seeds in ETEE Wrap. It’s reusable, non-toxic and biodegradable!

Now you get your healthy fats with your meal ๐Ÿ™‚ Excellent for keeping our skin nice and soft in the cold weather!

Get in my belly!

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Coconutty Apple Crisp

Are you sensitive, intolerant or allergic to a lot of things? Especially things that are a part of the grain family? Are you sad when people make delicious apple crisp and you can’t have any because it has oats and wheat flour? Well then hold onto your hats my friends, this dessert is for you! I love apple crisp, but haven’t been able to eat it for years for reasons mentioned above so I decided to take matters into my own hands. Things got a little crazy with the coconut and apples and cinnamon, but it turned out really well and was a crowd pleaser ๐Ÿ˜€

Apples are one of my favourite fruits. So simple but I eat them almost every day. They are really high in fiber(pectin), so they are good at keeping you feeling full and regulating those blood sugars. The high fiber also binds to fatty substances and toxins in the digestive tract and helps increase the elimination of them. So basically they are a good detoxifying food. Apples also have loads of antioxidants, my fave being Quercetin which is anti-inflammatory and works as an anti-histamine for people suffering from allergies! They are also super high in vitamin C which is another powerful antioxidant and helps build that glorious collagen in our skin!

It’s gluten-free and oat-free! Woohoo!

You will need a 9″-13″ pan

Ingredients:

  • approx. 6 large apples
  • 1/2 cup coconut sugar (if you don’t have this then brown sugar is ok)
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 cup ground almonds (almond meal)
  • 1/2 cup coconut oil
  • 1 tsp of cinnamon (if you can’t have cinnamon you can sub in nutmeg)
  • 1/4 cup gluten free flour (I use quinoa flour but you can use which ever is your fave)
  • 1/2 shredded coconut (or you can add more than this if you are really feeling the coconut)

Instructions:

  • Preheat the oven to 350’C and lightly grease pan with coconut oil.
  • Depending on your preference you can peel the apples or leave the skin on. Then cut up into slices, but not too thin so it doesn’t go mushy. About 1 cm thick.
  • Lay the slices in the pan evenly.
  • In a large mixing bowl add the coconut sugar, brown sugar, ground almonds, cinnamon (or nutmeg), gluten-free flour of choice and the coconut oil. Mix together thoroughly. Having the coconut oil liquid-y is easier, but it works either way.
  • Gently spread the mixture over top of the apple slices and try to get an even distribution.
  • Next add a layer of the shredded coconut and you are good to go!
  • Cover the pan and pop it in the oven for about 15 minutes, then remove cover and bake for another 5-10 minutes.
  • Let cool and dig in!

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Pretty Pink Beet Hummus

Who doesn’t love hummus? I don’t trust you if you don’t :p Kidding… but seriously. I love hummus so much, I would die without it! I have a few fave store bought ones, but nothing “beets” my homemade hummus with simple, healthy ingredients. My Pretty Pink Beet Hummus takes regular hummus to the next level! This one takes a bit of work if you are not one to throw down in the kitchen, but it is so worth it.

Why is beet hummus so special you may ask? Well first off, it’s pink haha. And that is one of my fave colours so it looks awesome when you eat it. Secondly, beets are so amazingly healthy. This is a great way to sneak in a ‘liver super food’ into your daily diet! Beets are extremely anti-inflammatory and are natural blood cleansers. Beets are high in betalains which help form glutathione, and the glutathione helps neutralize and cleanse toxins from the blood, liver and other organs. They are also high in fiber which have a cleansing effect on the digestive system. The cleansing of toxins along with the high amount of anti-oxidants in beets have a great anti-aging effects on our skin too. One of the many reasons why beets rule! They are a beauty food!

This hummus recipe is also great for anyone who has a vinegar allergy or sensitivity. Store-bought hummus often times has vinegar in it and vinegar is a fairly common sensitivity. Try this out, and let me know what you think!

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup dry chick peas (or one can – BPA free)
  • 1 medium sized onion
  • 1 head of garlic
  • 2 lemons
  • 3 tbsp of tahini
  • 1/2 cup of olive oil
  • sea salt
  • 1 large or 3-4 small beets
  • 1tbsp of coconut or avocado oil

Instructions:

If you are using dried chick peas, makes sure you soak them overnight, and to cook, boil for about an hour until they are nice and soft. While the beans are cooking, cut the end off a head of garlic, wrap in in foil and bake at 350C for about 20-25 minutes, until the cloves are nice and soft (you can rub a little coconut or avocado oil on the exposed cloves). While the garlic is in the oven and the beans are cooking, slice up your onion, put a tbsp of coconut or avocado oil in a pan and carmelize those onions.

While those are all cooking away, pull out the food processor and add the juice of 2 lemons. I like it really “lemony” but if you don’t, just add the juice of one and go by taste when you blend it up. Next add in the tahini and olive oil. Then grab your raw beet/beets and peel and chop up into cubes and toss into the food processor. You can pulse it a bit to prepare the mixture to add the rest.

Once the beans, onions and garlic have been boiled, carmelized and baked, toss them into the food processor and puree that hummus! Add in some sea salt to taste as you blend. Once you have it pureed to the consistency you like, put it into a glass container and store in the fridge. I find it can last almost a week ๐Ÿ˜€ Enjoy!

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Easy Veggie Soup

I love this soup so much! I’d say it’s hands down my favourite soup. I just love my veggies but it also tastes really good and it’s super healthy. Bonus! The sweet potatoes and carrots are full of vitamin A for healthy skin and eyes. The broccoli is an excellent liver detoxer. The celery is high in potassium. The lentils are ย a great source of iron and everyone knows how amazing turmeric is! Get that anti-inflammatory action going on! Also the whole meal is high in vitamin C which is really great to boost our immune systems as the weather starts to change.

I hope you love this soup as much as I do ๐Ÿ™‚

Easy Veggie Soup

Ingredients:

Servings: 4-5

  • 16 oz of Veggie stock
  • 2 cups plain tomato sauce (in glass jar – avoid cans with BPA)
  • 1 small head of broccoli
  • 3 carrots
  • 4 celery stalks
  • 1 medium sweet potato
  • 1/2 cup of red lentils
  • 1/2 tsp of paprika
  • 1/2 tsp of turmeric
  • A sprinkle (or more!) of cayenne pepper
  • Sea salt to taste

Instructions:

This soup is really simple to make, which is why it is a staple for me when life gets busy. I like to make large batches so I can freeze them and have healthy left overs.

So to start, pour the veggie stock with the plain tomato sauce into a large pot and turn heat on somewhere mid-range for a simmer. Next toss in the spices and stir it all up!

While that is warming up, chop up all your veggies and measure out your lentils. Once everything is chopped toss the veggies and lentils in the pot, stir, cover, and simmer for about 30 minutes or until sweet potatoes are soft. Then serve, and enjoy!

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Creamy Acorn Squash Soup

Acorn Squash

With fall right around the corner I have been soup obsessed. This one is a current fave and is loaded with so many healthy fats to protect the skin during the transition of the seasons (although we are back in full summer temps at the moment and I’m not complaining!). Acorn squash is loaded with Vitamin C to boost your immune system which is important this time of year. Vitamin C also helps collagen production in the skin which keeps us looking our best! It is also loaded with beta-carotene and Vitamin A which protects the eyes and is great for theย skin by protecting against premature aging. Acorn squash is loaded with antioxidants to help fight free radical damage and the high potassium in it helps lower blood pressure, plus it’s anti-inflammatory! The red lentils in this soup add protein, are a good source of iron and make the soup more creamy and thick.

I like to make large batches of soup so I can have left-overs and freeze portion sizes for meals at a later date when life gets busy! This recipe makes about 5-6 servings, so if that is too much for you just cut the recipe in half! Let me know what you think ๐Ÿ™‚

Ingredients:

Servings 5-6

  • 2 medium sized Acorn Squashes
  • 2 cans of BPA-free coconut milk
  • 16 oz of veggie stock
  • 1 medium sized onion
  • 2 green apples
  • 1/2 cup red lentils
  • 4 tbsps coconut oil
  • 1/2 tsp of paprika
  • sprinkle of cayenne (if you like a bit of heat)
  • sea salt to taste
  • 1-3 avocados

Instructions:

If you want to save yourself the trouble of cutting up the acorn squash raw, you can cut it in half and bake it first to soften it. Forty five minutes at 400 C, should do the trick (or until it’s soft enough to remove from the skin).

While the acorn squash is cooking you can start by adding the 4 tbsps of coconut oil to a large pot. Next slice up the onions and throw them in the pot with the oil, then slice up the green apples and add them.

Once the onion and apples are softened you can add the coconut milk, veggie stock, spices and sea salt. Then add the red lentils and acorn squash and simmer for about 15 minutes (30 minutes if acorn squash is not baked first).

Let cool a bit, then add it to the food processor, and blend until smooth. I have to do this in two parts usually because I like to do huge batch cooking so I can freeze for meals later in the week, or future. So pour your first blended part into a large bowl, while you blend up the rest.

Once creamy and smooth, portion out into your bowls and/or freezer-friendly glass containers. Add a chopped up avocado to garnish for extra healthy fats and to keep you feeling full for hours. You can pretend you’re fancy like me and drizzle it with some sriracha sauce after to make it look purdy :p

Enjoy ๐Ÿ˜‰

Creamy Acorn Squash Soup

Garnish with avocado and Sriracha sauce!

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