Paloma loves to eat. In that way, we are very fortunate. It’s quite a rarity for her to turn down food, and she’s always eager to try anything I put in front of her. I’ll never forget an impossibly bitter dandelion smoothie that I made. No one could drink it, except for Paloma, who joyfully slurped down a whole glass. I dearly love to cook and feed people, especially family and friends, and her approval makes me one happy mama.
Our days usually start with me cooking breakfast and impatient Paloma sitting at the kitchen table, spoon in hand, narrating my preparations and hurrying me on. It’s quite humorous. She is not the calmest of children (a little tornado to be exact) and becomes very excited when food is in sight.
This is where the idea for the edible puzzle stemmed from. I imagined a game that would occupy Paloma, and, since she puts everything in her mouth, be safe and tasty to eat. I thought about the obvious educational qualities of puzzles such as teaching about shape, colour, size, structure, and included two more – flavour and nutritional value.
Summer is officially over – And yes, I’m just now getting the memo. Ok, that’s not true, I got the memo when then blogoshpere blew up with pumpkin-everything – however, I just chose to ignore. Why? Because as I get older, I realize the start of fall means one month closer to the beginning of winter – and that, makes me extremely sad.
Celebrating the end of my most beloved favorite season, I was gifted a large bag of basil from a good friend last week. While most of the basil will be used to make pesto for the winter months (it freezes beautifully), the rest I wanted to use in a more special and unique format. After all, I’m sure no one wants to come to my blog and see a recipe for pesto, right? Right. So instead, I came up with this carrot and basil ice cream concoction.
Carrots are beautiful for a few reasons: they’re easily accessible, they’re affordable, and they transition wonderfully between sweet and savory dishes. Moreover, they also have the ability to take on flavor profiles such as pumpkin, which is exemplified in this recipe. I swear, if you close your eyes and take a bite, you’ll think you are eating a pumpkin-based ice cream. And the best part is, you didn’t have to prep a pumpkin — Ohhh, the angst.
So – put the pumpkin down, step away, and instead, give this much-simpler-to-use veggie a try!
Thanks again to Mike and Stephanie for providing me with such wonderfully fresh and tasty basil this summer – I look forward to next year! (you’ve created a monster
I’ve decided that it’s time for a few recipes. I’ve been sitting on these for a while now. In fact, I made the pudding in the summer, as you’ll see by the green plants in the background of the picture – the ground is now covered in snow. The second recipe is a wintery ice cream. It’s very different from the ice creams I’m used to making, and more in keeping in line with my latest dietary needs. In both cases I’ve used young coconut as a base. I love its versatility!
Mint and vanilla are one of my favorite flavor combinations. They don’t necessarily appear to be a match, but there is just something about these ingredients that works well together. It’s my favorite Moonie Pie flavor too – you’ll see that the mint filling is actually filled with both vanilla and mint.
Speaking of moonie pies, a funny thing happened today. Philip is in England right now and while he was dining at Saf Restaurant, he saw a moonie pie on their dessert menu (he even snapped a pic of it written on the menu, for me, hehe). He never tried it or saw the actual dessert, but we found it interesting. I’ll take it as a compliment.
This recipe is fairly low glycemic, with coconut and stevia as the sweeteners. I like to use both fresh mint and it’s essential oil to balance the flavors and make them come to life. If you don’t have the essential oil use a natural extract, but the oil is superior in quality and taste. Like the mint, I use two kinds of vanilla (the seeds of the fresh bean, and a natural extract) to achieve a more multi dimensional taste.
This is one of my favorite comforting gluten free winter desserts. Your house will smell divinely festive too! Any firm apple works well here: Gala, Fuji, Jonagold, Rome, Winesap, Mutsu. If you use soft apples such as Macintosh or Red delicious you will get more of an apple sauce texture. Hey, could be good too! Try it all I say!! Oh and I like to leave the apple skins on, being that much of the nutrients are in the skin, but if you prefer them without, by all means peel away. Also any seasonal fruit works wonderfully so have fun experimenting with your favorites. You can make this with or without nuts, use any dried fruit, substitute rolled oats for the quinoa flakes and another all purpose whole grain flour for the quinoa flour. Serve warm with a scoop of Nutmeg Ice Cream. Mmmm Mmmmm
A quickie kind of post, for a quickie kind of recipe. However, these are so gosh-darn good, that they really don’t need much of an explanation. I’m addicted. Remember thin mints, the ones you ate as a kid? Well this is my Raw/Vegan version of the Thin Mints. A must try! Continue Reading / Additional Photos / Videos
Yogurt is an ancient wonderfood, brimming with beneficial bacteria to keep your gut running good ‘n healthy. But standard yogurt is made with dairy milks – blech – which contain hormones and carcinogens and acids and allergens and irritants. Oh my! But no worries, making your own alt yogurt is *super* easy and totally fun. It also saves a small fortune versus buying prepackaged products (which contain a slew of additives as well).
If you already have a yogurt maker you’re super stoked – and you can still use this recipe, but follow your machine’s directions when it comes time to culture. If you’re interested in making lots of yogurt at home, a yogurt maker may be a good investment for you. They’re really quite cheap – especially if you can find one secondhand (check Craigslist!).
But, a yogurt maker isn’t necessary! I make yogurt in my crock-pot, which is one machine that’s worth the money for all sorts of reasons. (I <3 my crock so much!) But even if you have neither a yogurt maker nor a crock-pot, you can *still* make yogurt at home! Just see the note at the end of this post. Continue Reading / Additional Photos / Videos
I’m in love… with my latest creation – Cinnamon Marshmallow Mousse. It’s fluffy, springy, soft and downright delicious. I guess I’m on a bit of a kick, since I posted a Dark Chocolate Mousse only days ago. This one is inspired by the Cinnamon Chaga Mousse that I made a few months ago.
I’ll be teaching a raw dessert class in Adelaide on Sunday March 6th! I’m so excited about this. It will be my second class in Australia, as I will also be teaching in Byron Bay. Here’s the info: Continue Reading / Additional Photos / Videos
The oven at my BF house sucks. I think I have expressed this unfortunately dilemma before. So when it comes to baking, I cross my fingers and hope it comes out alright due to the uneven heat distribution. That said, these cookies came out of the oven completely flat…blended all together like one big pancake. I almost tossed them…that is until I tasted them…Mmmm. So if the same thing should happen to you, don’t fret. They are still very tasty and the pics came out so good I may have accidentally created the new flat square cookie craze… :)
Now, here’s a cooking mystery that I’ve been trying to solve. The original fig bar recipe calls for coconut oil in the “dough” part instead of the almond butter that I used in my adapted version. I’ve tried to use coconut oil, but it immediately went rancid in the dehydrator. I didn’t give up easily and tried to use different brands of coconut oil, but the result was always the same – rancid. I’m puzzled – it never happens when I use coconut oil in other recipes that require dehydration. If you happen to know the reason, please let me know. I’m truly curious.
Blueberries – nature’s candy and nature’s medicine, packed with antioxidants, fiber, and vitamin C. I just happen to live in blueberry country. It’s one of the few perks of living in the north. Every year I battle the bears out in the old logging roads to pick pails and pails of berries. I gobble them up in their natural state, in addition to using them in smoothies and desserts, before freezing heaps of them to enjoy throughout the year.
The taste of wild berries can’t be compared to store bought ones – in fact, I never buy them because I know what the REAL ones taste like. I often invite my raw food friends up to my little corner in northwestern Ontario, Canada to partake in my wild adventures, so consider this an invite to join in my summer berry expeditions!
I hope you’ll give this blueberry cheesecake a try. It’s delicious with the cardamom but you could easily omit it if you’re not a fan.
For Canadian thanksgiving, I made mini vegan pumpkin pies. For years I’ve made raw pumpkin pies, trying sweet potatoes, pumpkin, squash, carrot juice/nut combo – but I have to say, I prefer this cooked style. Enjoy it with a big dollop of the coconut whipped cream that I featured in my previous recipe post.
What’s so great about this pie? First, there are no nuts in the filling, making it far easier for me to digest (and good digestion is the name of the game for me these days more than ever). Instead I’ve used the natural creaminess of the cooked pumpkin along with healthy raw ingredients to create a delicious pie.
Secondly, this is a low glycemic dessert, using a small amount of coconut sugar in conjunction with stevia to sweeten it.
What makes it a “mousse” pie? I’ve suped it up with irish moss and coconut oil to give it a light, fluffy moussey texture. In fact, I’ve made this a few times already, that’s how much I like it, and it holds well as a cheesecake and as a simple mousse/pudding too! Whatever you choose, I’m fairly certain you’ll enjoy :)
This decadent Blackforest Chocolate Cheesecake by Vanessa Sherwood drew quite a knockout reaction when she posted it on the forum. I’m sure you can see why. It is bursting with sweet cherries layered between a chocolate crust and a creamy chocolate cheesecake filling. Vanessa advised the members of the forum they can purchase raw cacao butter and coconut oil for great prices at Organic Living Food. She also said it can be replaced with a dark Green and Black’s chocolate bar. I know what some of you will be making your loved ones this Valentines!