self-care

2017: The Year of Self-Care

Happy New Year, everyone! As 2017 commences, I’m sure many of you are doing what I’m doing: trying to mindfully come up with a tangible wellness goal. My usual go-to is “I won’t drink any alcohol in January!” or “I will work out every day no matter what!”

But you know what? Those goals usually become stressful because they may not be realistic. And when your new year’s resolution doesn’t come to fruition, it can be depressing. Which starts the cycle of feelings of failure and disappointment!

Ugh.

So instead, this year, I’ve decided to focus more broadly on self-care. This means no hard rules, but it encourages me to remember that being mindful about all facets of my health is important. Here are 5 ways in which one can focus on self-care (and this is my personal plan; what I’ll be doing):

Eats

The first thing most of us think of when adopting a self-care routine is a diet tweak. And fair enough! I mean, you are what you eat, right? The fuel we choose to put into our body directly correlates with mood, behaviour, weight, aging, and more.

So what should we be eating?

I think the trick is to not be strict and deprive yourself. (Because most of us can’t stick to an all-or-nothing plan.) Instead, a healthy balance is optimal. In general, tons of fresh vegetables, lots of whole grain carbohydrates (like yams and sprouted grains), and lots of plant-based or lean protein.

Basically, anything that makes you feel good and gives you energy and lends to quality sleep and rest is what you’re looking for. If you’re looking for a new healthy cookbook, try Vegetarian Comfort Foods!

Drinks

Water, water, water. That is all. (Haha…) Here’s the thing: we know that caffeinated beverages and alcohol are dehydrating and affect mood. We know that sodas and juice contain way too much sugar, which spike our blood sugar and then leave us feeling sleepy after.

And more recently, I’ve discovered my go-to non-alcoholic drink of choice (club soda with lime and cucumber) makes me bloated because of all the carbonation. So I’ve come to the conclusion that water and herbal teas should definitely make up the bulk of what I drink during the day and night.

To find out how to make your own herbal teas, check out The Good Living Guide to Medicinal Tea!

self-care

Movement

Movement is so essential to our bodies and growth and development, and yet we forget to move! Most of us intentionally schedule in time for movement (which is great), but ideally, our bodies should be moving a lot more. Small ways to incorporate movement into our daily lives, include taking the stairs instead of an elevator or escalator, parking on the outskirts of the parking lot so that you’re forced to walk a little more, getting up from your desk and stretching every 45 minutes, and so on.

Think about what you can do to incorporate more movement into your life, and your body will thank you for it.

Sleep

Fresh off of reading The Sleep Revolution by Arianna Huffington (which I mentioned in a previous blog post HERE), I’m really beginning to understand (and I mean REALLY understand) just how much we should all be appreciating and emphasizing better sleep.

Our culture has somehow evolved to think of being busy and sleep-deprived as something to be celebrated or respected, and yet, being sleep deprived is basically the same as being intoxicated. Would you go to work drunk or drive home from a business meeting while under the influence?

I hope not, and yet we all do it in the form of being exhausted. Let’s start NOT doing that. Let’s just remember to place appropriate emphasis on sleep, and celebrate what it feels like to not be tired!

Mental

As in mental health, that is. Although everything that’s listed above contributes to better mental health, we can a couple more things to really give a final push.

  • Meditate.
  • Be grateful.
  • Say thank you.
  • Breathe deep.
  • Love yourself.
  • Try aromatherapy.

And that’s it. By committing to general improvements in your own self-care routine, you become more in tune with parts of yourself that you can’t possibly reach when you’re not as well as you could be.

Happy New Year, friends! Cheers to self-care, and to living life with intent and grace. Give yourself a break, and tune into YOU!

You deserve it. xo

New Year Goals

New Year, New Goals

As we approach a brand new year, many of us are taking some time to figure out how we can improve our lives in a healthy and productive way. After all, a new year is a great jumping off point for new focus, new aspirations, and new energy.

I’m so pleased to introduce a guest writer for this post; Cassie Brewer:

Build a Stronger and Healthier You this New Year

Our plans to completely transform our bodies, our habits or our lives are often too ambitious at the start of the new year, leading most of us to fail by giving up on our resolutions soon after we get started.

Rather than overhauling your whole entire life by simply listing goals, you can try to adopt lifelong habits this new year, so that you can become a stronger and healthier version of yourself, without having to resort to extremes like crash diets or end up suffering from severe exhaustion.

There are several things you can do to turn your life around and be the best version of yourself this new year and for the years to come, but the following are the top five habits to adopt:

Eat When You’re Hungry

If you’re ending the year emotionally exhausted from yo-yo dieting, then think of turning a new page this new year by foregoing dieting, and instead, choose to listen to your body. Rather than figuring out the best diet for you, try to understand why you are hungry. Do you really need to eat something or is there an emotional issue that you want to forget with food?

Don’t make 2017 another year where you use food as a crutch.

new year meditation

Adopt a Meditative Ritual

Unless you live on a farm with no Wi-Fi, then chances are your life is bound to get busier. Adopting a meditative ritual such as meditation first thing in the morning or yoga a few times a week will help you to find stillness despite your busy life. Download an app to guide you through meditation or chant the mantra you feel most connected to.

When it comes to yoga, you can join a class or even do the poses at home — no matter how hectic life gets, you can always sneak a few minutes of yoga to de-clutter your mind.

Find a Skincare Regime (that works for YOU)

Skincare is not something that you start worrying about later in life when much of the damage has been done. It is essential to find a quick but effective skincare regime with high quality products that are right for your skin. While the regime will vary, depending on your skin type, there are certain products our face will always need, such as sunscreen (even on winter days!) serum, eye cream and a good moisturizer.

Tap Into Your Creativity

We all have our versions of what creativity is, but most of us tend to lose this trait because of an overwhelming work/life schedule. Creativity is essential to drive us to be better at work and in life, so it’s important to go in search of inspiration throughout the year. Read books that challenge you creatively, learn something new, or go back to doing something you used to do when you were very young and let your mind find its way back to being spontaneous and perceptive.

Go Offline

Finally, learn to switch off and take real breaks. It has become the norm to be constantly on and having something to do, but doing nothing has its many benefits, too. Go for long walks in nature, have tech-free weekends and start your morning without checking your phone. Only by quieting the noise of the online world can we understand what is going on inside our mind, so we can understand what we are doing, how we are feeling, and where we are going.

“Just as good sleep hygiene was the hot topic of 2016, digital detox plans will be trending in 2017.” –Jennifer Browne

Happy New Year! Cheers to a new and improved you, and an amazing 2017. xo


About the Author

Cassie Brewer is a makeup professional in Southern California. In her free time, she enjoys writing about her passion (makeup of course!) and everything beauty related. Nothing makes her happier than helping other be the best version of themselves they can be. You can read more at cassiebrewer.weebly.com and follow her on twitter @Cassiembrewer.

 

Chia seeds in pudding

The Chia Pudding Recipe Obsession Continues…

“Also for chia seeds. Honestly, we don’t know what we’d do without you.”

This is what Tanya R. Loewen and I wrote in the dedication section of Baby Nosh, and that was over a year ago. Guess what? We’re still obsessed! Or I am, at least.

So I had to share my newest, most favourite way of making chia pudding for fall and winter. It’s gone from 3 measured tablespoons of chia seeds and one cup of almond milk (stirred), to an approximate pour of chia seeds to whatever milk alternative I have on hand (I love coconut milk best!), shaken.

chia seeds pudding

That’s right, shaken. Lazy Chia Pudding (because this is what I’m calling it, now), is created in a jar with a lid. And.today I added pomegranate seeds which completely changed everything.

(I know I’m being dramatic. I can’t help it.)

Other fun things to add are raspberries, blueberries, chopped dried apricot, shaved coconut, or whatever else you have in your fridge and/or pantry that you think might rock your chia world. So bottom line? Just throw stuff in a mason jar, lid that sucker well, shake the hell out of the contents, wait a little bit, shake the hell out of it again, and refrigerate overnight.

The next morning, you’ll have amazing and super nutritious Lazy Chia Pudding. (The best kind, remember.)

Chia Pudding Tips:

  • The more seeds you add, the thicker the pudding with be. I like it smooth and malleable, not super thick or runny. This is a preference thing, which is totally up to you.
  • You can use literally whatever milk you want. Even chocolate–I made chocolate chia pudding on television one time. Check it out:

  • You need to let it sit for a few minutes between shakes. The initial shake is needed, and then another good shake a few minutes later.
  • You don’t need to refrigerate overnight, but it’s so easy to make the night before and then have it ready to eat for breakfast the next morning. You can mix it with some fruit, or top oatmeal with it, too.

chia seeds recipe

So there you go! Happy chia pudding time! If you want more recipes that use chia seeds, check out Baby Nosh or Vegetarian Comfort Foods.

xo

Lime Popsicles

My Top 10 Vegan Popsicle Recipes of the Summer

If any of you have been following my Twitter feed in the last couple of months, you’ll notice a definite trend in content: popsicle recipes. I admittedly have been obsessed with popsicles lately, and now I feel the need to post my top ten fave popsicle recipes of the summer.

Disclaimer: some are easier than others (check out my pick from Jillian Harris!).

Here they are; all associated images were taken from the websites in which the popsicle recipes were found:

1

Summer Berry Chia Pops

By Daphne Cheng; Found on Well + Good

Vegan Treat

Ingredients

  • 2 cups strawberries, hulled
  • 1 cup blueberries
  • 1 cup raspberries
  • 1 cup coconut milk
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt
  • 1/4 cup chia seeds
  • Agave (optional)

Method

  1. Blend all ingredients until well-blended but still slightly chunky for texture.
  2. Taste and add agave to sweeten, if necessary.
  3. Slowly mix in chia seeds, whisking while pouring to avoid clumps.
  4. Pour into popsicle molds. Freeze at least 2 hours or until solid.

2

Tart Rhubarb Ice Pops

By Kelly Irwin, Found on Vega

Vegan popsicle

Ingredients

  • 2 cups rhubarb
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup raspberries
  • ¾ cup orange juice
  • ¼ cup agave syrup or maple syrup
  • 1-2 Tbsp. orange zest (depending on your citrus love)
  • ½ inch fresh peeled ginger

Method

  1. Place chopped rhubarb, raspberries and water in a small pot on the stove over medium heat.
  2. Bring to a simmer, then turn down heat to low and continue summering for about 15 minutes (until rhubarb is tender).
  3. Pour mixture into a blender with the syrup, peeled ginger and orange juice.
  4. Blend until pureed.
  5. Add in orange zest, then place in the fridge to cool.
  6. Once mixture is cooled, pour into ice pop molds, freeze, and leave for at least 5 hours.

3

Grapefruit Popsicles

By Jillian Harris, found on Jillian Harris

Grapefruit vegan popsicles

Ingredients

  • Sweetened ruby red grapefruit juice

Method

  1. Pour slightly sweetened ruby red grapefruit juice into your favorite popsicle molds and freeze!

4

Roasted Blueberry, Coconut and Lime Popsicles

By Alex Caspero, Found on Delish Knowledge

Roasted Blueberry, Coconut and Lime Popsicles

Ingredients

  • 1 pint blueberries
  • 3 tablespoons maple syrup, divided
  • 1 can coconut milk (either regular or light), divided
  • 1 large lime, zest and juice
  • very small pinch of sea salt

Method

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Place blueberries in a single layer in a glass baking pan.
  3. Drizzle with 1 tablespoon maple syrup and roast for 10 minutes or until bubbly and piping hot.
  4. Remove from oven, allow blueberries to cool completely then transfer the blueberries and any blueberry juice into the base of a blender along with ¼ cup coconut milk and a pinch of the lime zest.
  5. Puree mixture until creamy and smooth, then divide blueberry mixture among the popsicle molds.
  6. Return the blender to the base and add the remaining maple syrup, coconut milk, lime juice, zest and very small pinch of sea salt.
  7. Puree to combine and add to the molds. (You can keep the mixture layered like this, or give the molds a quick stir for a marbled look.)
  8. Cover and freeze until firm, about 2 hours.

5

Red Paradise Tea Pops

Found on Amoda Tea

Tea Berry Popsicles

Ingredients

  • Your tea of choice
  • Your preferred sweetener (we like organic cane sugar)
  • Berries or sliced fresh fruit

Method

  1. Steep a pot of tea!
  2. Sweeten if up a little more than you would if you were going to drink it, then put it in the fridge to cool it down. (Alternatively, you can cold steep it overnight or steep it double strength and pour it over ice.)
  3. Pour the cooled tea liquid into popsicle molds and pop them in the freezer until their slushy.
  4. Give it a stir so the sweetener doesn’t end up in the tip of the popsicle and add fresh fruit.
  5. Freeze overnight.

6

2-Ingredient Mango-Coconut Popsicles

Found on Simple Vegan Blog

Vegan popsicles

Ingredients

  • 2 cups diced fresh mango
  • ½ cup coconut milk

Method

  1. Blend the mango and the coconut milk in a blender until smooth.
  2. Pour the mixture into the popsicle molds.
  3. Freeze for 35 minutes and gently insert popsicle sticks.
  4. Freeze until solid.

7

Creamy Dulce de Leche Pops

By Dana, Found on Minimalist Baker

Vegan pops

Ingredients

  • 14 medjool dates, pitted (If dry, soak in warm water for 10 min. then drain)
  • ½ tsp. sea salt
  • 1 14-ounce can coconut cream or full fat coconut milk (if using full fat milk, add 1 Tbsp. melted coconut oil)*
  • 1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
  • 1-2 Tbsp. maple syrup
  • *Optional: 1 Tbsp. bourbon

Method

  1. Add pitted dates to a food processor or high speed blender and blend until a caramel-like paste is achieved. If you have trouble blending, add 2-4 Tbsp. warm water to help achieve the right texture – thick and spreadable. Scrape down sides as needed and blend until a thick, caramel-like consistency is achieved.
  2. Once the date caramel is smooth and creamy, add 1/4 – 1/2 tsp sea salt depending on how salty you prefer it. Taste and adjust as needed.
  3. Scoop out caramel and set aside. Then add coconut cream (or coconut milk + coconut oil), vanilla, 1/2 cup of the date caramel, and 1-2 Tbsp. maple syrup or agave nectar for additional sweetness.
  4. Blend until creamy and smooth and taste and adjust flavors as needed. Bourbon is optional, but recommended for flavor.
  5. Transfer mixture to a mixing bowl, cover and chill in the refrigerator for 3-4 hours (or freezer for 1-2 hours) for best results.
  6. Once chilled, add the remaining caramel back in in small spoonfuls and loosely stir to combine/swirl.
  7. Scoop/pour into popsicle or ice cube molds (about 10, depending on their size) trying to evenly distribute the caramel swirls, and tap to remove air bubbles. Insert popsicle sticks and freeze for at least 6 hours or until firm.
  8. Once set, remove from freezer and let rest for 5 minutes to soften. Then gently pull out of molds and enjoy.
  9. Pops keep covered in the freezer for up to 1 week, though best when fresh.

8

Peachy Vegan Vanilla Pudding Pops

By Jennifer Chait, Found on InHabitat

Vegan Pops

Ingredients

  • 3 tablespoons cornstarch.
  • 2 and 1/2 cups vanilla soy milk or other alternative milk.
  • 2/3 cup organic white sugar.
  • 2 tablespoons Earth Balance (vegan butter).
  • 2 teaspoons fair trade, organic pure vanilla extract.
  • 1 to 2 organic peaches, washed, peeled and chopped into small pieces (about 2 cups worth). (You can also use frozen organic peaches or another fruit of your choice.)

Method

  1. Whisk 1/4 cup milk plus the cornstarch together. Set aside.
  2. Heat the rest of the milk and the sugar in pot on the stovetop.
  3. Heat the milk and sugar on medium low heat, stirring occasionally.
  4. When the milk starts to steam whisk in the cornstarch mix.
  5. Cook on medium high heat, stirring occasionally until thick and starting to boil (about 5 minutes).
  6. Turn the heat down very low and cook 5 more minutes.
  7. Turn off the heat and whisk in your butter and vanilla.
  8. Allow mixture to cool down. then fold chopped peaches into the vanilla pudding.
  9. Pour into molds and freeze.

9

Mint Chocolate Popsicles

By Miryam Quinn Doblas, Found on Nuts.com

Vegan Mint Chocolate Pops

Ingredients

Popsicles:

  • 14 oz coconut cream
  • 1 tbsp. cacao powder
  • 1/4 cup cacao nibs
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • 1-2 tsp. spirulina
  • 2 tsp mint extract

Drizzle:

  • 1 tbsp. coconut oil
  • 1/3 cup dark chocolate chips, vegan

Method

  1. Place all the popsicle ingredients into your blender and pulse until the mixture comes together.
  2. Divide the mixture among the popsicle molds and place a wooden stick in each compartment.
  3. Freeze for at least 3-4 hours.
  4. Before serving the popsicles, place the chocolate chips and coconut oil in a microwave-safe dish and melt in 30 seconds intervals until completely melted.
  5. Drizzle the melted chocolate over the frozen popsicles. Enjoy!

10

Honeydew Green Tea Popsicles

By Sarah, Found on Well and Full

Vegan pops

Ingredients

  • 3 heaping cups cubed honeydew
  • 1 cup brewed green tea

Method

  1. In a blender, combine honeydew and green tea. Blend until everything is smooth and mixed.
  2. Pour your honeydew green tea mix into your popsicle mold, and set in the freezer for at least four hours or overnight, until popsicles have completely hardened.
  3. When you’re ready to eat the popsicles, run the molds under a little hot water to loosen, if needed.

To find more popsicle recipes by these amazing people, please visit the links that I’ve included in this post. If you’re interested in learning to make fun and plant-based baby food, check out Baby Nosh (my latest; released in March), and if you’re into sneaky smoothies, see HERE.

Happy summer! xo

Homemade granola

Maintaining Good Digestive Health While Camping

Maintain Good Digestive Health While Camping

For many of us, summertime means camping. In my family, we’re fortunate enough to own a cabin that’s shared between extended family members. Each summer, everyone is doled out their respective weeks, and we just got back from our initial 10 day getaway. The cabin in located in Green Lake, in 72 Mile, British Columbia.

It’s beautiful.

As someone who needs (and wants) to eat a certain way to maintain good digestive health, I’m often thrown off at our cabin. Travel plus convenience foods plus a shared washroom (there were nine of us to one bathroom) plus readily available alcohol at all hours of the day means that my gut typically gets thrown into a tailspin pretty quickly.

For the past couple of years, I’ve developed ways of making digestive health while at our cabin more realistic and sustainable, and wanted to share some tips with all of you. Here are 5 ways to keep your gut health while camping:

Bring Healthy Food

Camping might immediately bring about images of hot dogs and hamburgers and s’mores, but it doesn’t mean you actually have to eat those things. If your gut is touchy (like mine), then trying to maintain your current, regular diet is important. If you’re used to consuming daily smoothies, beans, and whole grains, then it’s fairly crucial to keep eating those things even while you’re away from your own home.

Assuming you won’t have to access to a kitchen (I’m pretty spoiled with this cabin thing), here’s my go-to list of foods to bring camping:

  1. Raw fruits and veggies
  2. Hummus
  3. Veggie burgers (use lettuce in place of a bun!)
  4. Homemade energy bars (teeming with fibre!)
  5. Oats for oatmeal
  6. Homemade chili (heat on a portable BBQ)
  7. Avocados (eat half at a time with salt and pepper)
  8. Pre-made chia pudding
  9. TONS of water

Which brings me to…

Drink a Ton of Water

If you’re camping, you should probably try and drink more water than you usually do, because you’re probably outside in the sun and will become dehydrated more easily. Booze does NOT replace water; water is very much needed to keep your insides healthy, hydrated, and properly lubricated.

Increase the Fibre

For those who suffer with IBS (like me), or any other chronic digestive issue, it’s pretty common for your body to decide to stop working properly with travel. Before I became more educated on the topic of IBS, I used to fly places and not have a bowel movement for a week.

Seriously.

So to keep your body in check and your bowel working, it’s a good idea to increase your fibre, water, and activity. It’s also important to pay attention: we might be distracted in our new surroundings, but if you receive any sort of signal that tells you it might be bathroom time, GO.

Incorporate NutraCleanse into Your Foods

NutraCleanse is a locally produced (well, local for me), high-fibre supplement that you can mix into anything. It’s not like over-the-counter laxatives; it’s whole and raw and healthy. It contains only 5 ingredients: flax seed, burdock root, fenugreek seeds, dandelion root, and psyllium husk. You can stir it into smoothies, yogurt, oatmeal, etc.

It’s a lifesaver.

If you’re currently taking Metamucil or any other comparable daily laxative, stop, and start taking NutraCleanse instead. For more information on this product, visit www.nutracleanse.biz.

Stay Active

This means don’t sit on your butt and drink beer all day. Walk, run, paddle board, swim, play games, water ski, hike, and do whatever you have to do to move your body. If you sit for a long weekend, your gut will respond to that by shutting down.

What kinds of tips do you have for me?! I’m always looking for better ways to love my body while on vacation, so anything you can think of is helpful. Leave your comment below, or find me on social and share.

For more ways to improve your digestive health, check out Happy Healthy Gut, available on Amazon, or in Chapters/Indigo and Barnes & Noble.

Happy Monday! xo

*Photo credit to Wild Honey Art House; recipe for this granola in Vegetarian Comfort Foods.

chia pudding

Vegan Chia Pudding: The Ultimate Fast Food

When we think of fast food, we often think of popular restaurant chains that crank out relatively unhealthy (yet delicious—damn all that addictive crap in there!) meals that are convenient for on the go.

But what if you could make your own fast foods that not only tasted great, but also fueled your body and brain? That would be a no-brainer, right? (Pun intended.)

Introducing Chia Pudding

Ok, so not exactly introducing, because you’ve probably already heard of it. But re-introducing. Chia pudding is a fabulous food for those on the run. (So, everyone.) Besides the fact that it’s insanely easy to make, it’s also teeming with heart and brain healthy omega 3 and 6 fatty acids, fibre, and protein.

So here’s a very basic recipe for chocolate chia pudding. You can add fruit, NutraCleanse (my very fave digestive health supplement), honey, or whatever. You can swap the chocolate soy milk for coconut milk.

But start here.

This recipe is from Vegetarian Comfort Foods (just released in August of 2015), but there’s another in Baby Nosh (released in March of 2016). They’re both vegan, gluten-free, and super yummy.

Babies to elders; everyone can eat chia pudding—you don’t need teeth. (OMG, that should’ve been the title of this blog post! Ha. You Don’t Need Teeth. Love it.)

Here ya go:

Chocolate Chia Pudding

Ingredients

  • 1 cup organic chocolate soy milk
  • 3 tbsp. chia seeds
  • 1 tbsp. raw coconut

Method

  • Stir chia seeds into milk and set aside for five minutes.
  • Stir again well, then cover and refrigerate overnight.
  • In morning, sprinkle coconut on top and eat right away.

If you want a visual, watch me make Riaz from Breakfast Television make it below:

Pistachio Stuffed Figs

Recipe: Sticky Pistachio Stuffed Figs

Hey, friends! Over Easter, I was asked to bring an appetizer to dinner, and so I brought this fabulously simple recipe that my sister-in-law (Kitchen, Uncorked) contributed to my second book, Vegetarian Comfort Foods. Honestly, everything this chick makes trumps anything I ever could.

She’s amazing.

But sister-from-another-mister love aside, I wanted to share this recipe with you. Like I said, it’s super simple, completely whole and plant-based, and wildly tasty.

Sticky Pistachio Stuffed Figs

Recipe by Natalie Browne

Ingredients

¾ cup shelled pistachios

24 dried figs

2 tsp. dried cardamom

1 tsp. cumin

1 orange, zest only

Method

Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Over low heat, toast pistachios until golden. Remove from heat and allow to cool slightly until you’re able to handle them.

While the pistachios are toasting, slice the figs three quarters of the way through, and set aside. Finely chop the pistachios and place in a small mixing bowl. Mix in the cardamom, cumin and orange zest.

Spoon the pistachio mixture into the figs, patting it down as you go. Place the figs on a baking sheet, and bake for 8 to 10 minutes until warm and slightly sticky. Serve immediately.

I hope you enjoy!

Moms: Do Your Kids Have Food Sensitivities?

Hey, friends! I have an exciting announcement: on March 1 2016, Baby Nosh quietly made its way into the world.

(Note: I’m talking about a baby book, not an actual baby.)

What

Baby Nosh is a book I co-wrote with the talented and locally acclaimed shutterbug, Tanya R. Loewen. Geared towards helping parents make good choices when it comes to feeding their baby solid foods, Baby Nosh is ultimately filled with tips, ideas, and 100 recipes that are kind to your baby’s digestive system and will not promote food sensitivities.

These days, with our food supply being so artificial and commercially prepped, we’re all (including our babies) feeling the results of a poor western diet.

But Baby Nosh can help!

This book is chalk-full of nutrient-dense foods that help your baby (your whole family, actually) successfully grow and thrive the way we were all designed to. Babies and children don’t need to suffer with food sensitivities.

If supplied with the right kind of foods, your family can be 100% food sensitivity-free.

Why

Your body is amazing. It does absolutely everything in its power to keep you alive, and that is the only reason we’re not all dropping like flies. I mean, let’s face it: most of us do nothing to mindfully and intentionally assist our bodies in being the best possible bodies they can be.

Right?

But a funny thing happens when you have kids: overnight, you become completely willing to give up your bad vices and totally prioritize your kids’ health and well-being. By way of osmosis, you also usually improve your own health, too.

SO: if you just had a baby, or your have small children, or just want to learn how to make easy, healthy, kind foods for your family, attend one of the two Baby Nosh events below. If you have kids with food sensitivities, you should come. If you have food sensitivities yourself, you should come.

When

Books will be for sale, and Tanya and I would be more than willing to help you achieve a blissful, healthy home–and usually, that type of wellness begins in the kitchen.

There are two locations: Abbotsford (April 5th at Precious Kargo Baby Boutique) and Vancouver (Commodity Juicery). Pick one (or both!) and we’ll see you there. If you can’t make it, you can still buy the book HERE. xo

Vegetarian Cooking at Lepp Farm Market

Happy Sunday, everyone! On Tuesday March 8, I’ll be demonstrating 4 recipes at Lepp Farm Market in Abbotsford, BC. The event will run from 7-9ish, and will include a signed copy of Vegetarian Comfort Foods.

So sign up today HERE!

I’ve decided to post the recipes we’ll be making here instead of handing out recipe cards, because it’s more eco-friendly, and easier to find than a lost piece of paper.

Right?!

It’s also noteworthy to mention that while 3 of the 4 recipes are from Vegetarian Comfort Foods, the smoothie is from my latest book, Baby Nosh.

So here are the 4 recipes we’ll be going through, and I hope you love them! Xo

Recipe #1: Green Goodness Smoothie (From Baby Nosh)

(Serves 2)

Ingredients

  • 1 banana
  • 1 cup green grapes
  • 1 kale leaf
  • 1 cup frozen pineapple
  • 6 fresh mint leaves
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 tsp. hemp hearts (optional)
  • 1 tsp. chia seeds (optional)

Method

  • Combine first 6 ingredients into a blender, and blend until smooth.
  • Sprinkle with hemp hearts and chia seeds for extra awesomeness.

Recipe #2: Mediterranean Sprouted Endive Boats (from Vegetarian Comfort Foods)

(Serves 6)

Ingredients

  • 2 mushrooms
  • 1 red bell pepper
  • ½ zucchini
  • 1 carrot, julienned
  • 1 cup sprouted beans
  • ¼ cup water
  • 2 tbsp. Greek salad dressing (Rendezvous is perfect!)
  • 2 endive spears

Method

  • Clean the veggies, and throw the mushrooms, pepper, and zucchini in a food processor.
  • Process until piece are small, but not quite minced. Set aside.
  • Peel the carrot and set aside.
  • Peel layers off endive spears, and arrange on platter so the cavity is face-up, resembling boats. Set aside.
  • Place ¼ cup of water in skillet and heat to medium.
  • Once simmering, add processed veggies (not the carrots) and sprouted beans, and sauté for 2 minutes to soften, slightly.
  • Remove from heat and drain any remaining water. Add tamari to the heated mixture, toss to coat, and scoop into endive cavities.
  • Garnish with 2-3 strips of carrot, and serve.

Recipe #3: Squashed Puttanesca (From Vegetarian Comfort Foods)

(Serves 2)

Ingredients

  • 1 spaghetti squash
  • 4 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 small white onion
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1 small fennel bulb
  • 3 cooked artichoke hearts
  • 1 16 oz can of crushed tomatoes
  • 1 tbsp. capers
  • ½ cup sliced black olives
  • ½ cup fresh, chopped parsley

Method

  • Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Cut squash lengthwise into two halves.
  • Grease cookie sheet with half the oil, and place squash flat-side down on sheet. Bake for 40 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, dice the onion, mince the garlic, slice fennel into “v” shapes, and quarter your artichokes.
  • Place pot on stove, and heat on medium. Once hot, add remaining oil, and throw in onion and garlic.
  • Let them brown while pushing around with spatula for about 2 minutes.
  • Turn heat down to medium and add tomatoes and fennel. Cover, and simmer for about 15 minutes.
  • Remove cover and add artichokes, capers, and olives, and simmer for another 5 minutes.
  • Remove squash from oven, and flip over. Set two plates close to stove.
  • Remove the middle stringy, seedy part of the squash using a large spoon.
  • Using a fork, scrape the cavity of the squash so that it comes out in strips, like spaghetti.
  • Once squash is plated, it should resemble spaghetti noodles. Top with sauce and then garnish with chopped parsley.
  • Enjoy!

Recipe #4: Coconut Bliss Balls (From Vegetarian Comfort Foods)

(Makes approximately 36 balls)

Ingredients

  • 2 cups pitted dates
  • ½ cup warm water
  • ¾ cup gluten-free rolled oats
  • ¼ cup sesame seeds
  • ¼ cup sunflower seeds
  • ¼ cup salted pumpkin seeds
  • ¼ cup chopped almonds
  • ¼ cup cranberries
  • ½ cup unsweetened shredded coconut

Method

  • Mix all ingredients except for coconut together in food processor, until well combined.
  • Form into balls, roll in coconut, and place on parchment paper or in mini-muffin cups as you go.
  • Store in mini-muffin cups in an air-tight container, in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.

I hope to see you at Lepp Farm Market in a couple of days! For more vegetarian recipe ideas, check out Vegetarian Comfort Foods. xo

Vegetarian Comfort Foods