recipes

Blueberry Banana Muffins with Hazelnut Flour

blue_banana_hazelnut_muffins

It’s Friday, and I must say it has been on long week. Aren’t they all? The kids have to be out the door by 7:45am in order to get to school on time, and Fridays always feels extra crazed. Friday is the homestretch, the last of the weekdays, the race to the finish.

Although this Friday felt rushed as ever, I was committed to make these muffins this morning, and I did it, with my timer on!

This recipe of the week is partly inspired by the 28-Day No-Sugar Challenge which starts on March 1st (next week!), as it is a comforting, sweet and satisfying recipe with no added sugars, not even honey or maple.

You’ll notice I have 1/4’d all these measurements. This is how I made the muffins this morning so I could go quickly. The recipe below makes six muffins. Multiply all ingredients by four and you have a full batch of 24 muffins which you can refrigerate or freeze!

When making the small batch, it took me eight minutes to pull out all everything I needed and combine all the ingredients, which meant these muffins were out of the oven in 30 minutes form the time I started making them. I popped them in the refrigerator right after coming out of the oven (not ideal, but you have to do what you have to do) so they’d cool faster, and the kids were out the door with a mango, avocado, spinach smoothie (recipe on the blog later today) and muffin in hand.

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup of hazelnut flour
  • 1 banana peeled and mashed with a fork
  • 1 egg
  • 1 heaping tablespoon of almond butter
  • 1/4 teaspoon of cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon of baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon of vanilla extract
  • a pinch of salt
  • 1 tablespoon melted coconut oil
  • 1/3 cup organic blueberries

Directions

  • Preheat your oven to 350F
  • Mash banana with your fork in a medium sized mixing bowl
  • Add all other ingredients, and combine
  • Add blueberries last
  • Fill lined muffin cups about 3/4 of the way as the muffins will rise a little
  • Bake for 22 minutes, or until you can stab with a fork which comes out clean
  • Let cool adequately before serving (if you have time 🙂

Enjoy!

recipes

Slowcooker Chicken with Cashew Milk and Spices

chicken_korma

This recipe is a fan favorite! It was inspired by a korma dish my children love to get from our local Indian restaurant. In an effort to duplicate those flavors at home, this is a new take on the korma but it’s gluten-, dairy- and nightshade-free (which is great for those following an anti-inflammatory diet). Like korma, it’s warming and flavorful but not spicy so it is super kid-friendly. Turmeric and ginger add to the layers of flavor and the anti-inflammatory quality.

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 medium yellow onion, chopped finely
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • about 2 pounds of organic chicken breast cut into 1-inch pieces or strips
  • sea salt or real salt
  • 1 cup of cashews soaked for at least 4 hours, but as long as overnight
  • 1 cup fresh water
  • 2 bayleaves
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 1 tablespoon ground coriander
  • 2-inch piece of fresh ginger root, peeled and grated
  • 4 cups of chicken broth
  • generous handful of fresh cilantro, chopped

foodandhearthmontage_korma

Directions

  • Soak cashews in water for at least 4 hours or overnight
  • In a large pan, over medium heat, warm olive oil until shimmering
  • Add onion and garlic and sauté until fragrant, about 3 minutes
  • Add bayleaves, cinnamon, cumin, turmeric, coriander and ginger root and sauté until spices evenly coat the chopped onion and garlic, about 3 minutes
  • Stir in the broth and deglaze pan, and bring the mixture to a boil
  • Add raw chicken to your slow cooker and season with salt
  • After the spice/onion/garlic mixture has come to a boil, remove from heat and transfer it into the slow cooker, pouring over the chicken until chicken is all covered
  • Set slow cooker to high for 3 hours or low for 6 hours (low setting is preferred)
  • Rinse soaked cashews and add them to your blender with 1 cup of fresh water, blend until finely puréed to the consistency of buttermilk.
  • Add cashew milk to the slow cooker about 30 minutes before chicken is done
  • Stir gently to combine cashew milk with the chicken
  • Remove bayleaves
  • Garnish with cilantro
  • Serve alone or over a starch like sweet potatoes or cauliflower rice, with a green vegetable on the side, and enjoy!
recipes

Strawberry, Beet and Cilantro Smoothie

strawberry-beet-cilantro

Happy February—the month of love! To kick it off right, I wanted to give you a smoothie recipe which is full of love, sweetness and nourishment.

Try it before an important meeting or after a strenuous workout. Avocados and bananas are chock full of potassium, and beet root is wonderful for circulation and full of gut-friendly fiber plus provides a boost of folate, magnesium, potassium, iron and zinc. The cilantro is a powerful detoxifying food.

Ingredients

  • 1/2 avocado
  • 1/2 cup frozen organic strawberries
  • 1 medium banana
  • a generous handful of fresh cilantro
  • 1 teaspoon beetroot powder
  • 1 cup unsweetened almond milk

Thoroughly blend all ingredients and enjoy! Makes about 16 oz, perfect for yourself or to share!

Uncategorized

Health-Promoting Fats

good_fats

One of the best things you can do for your body is give it healthy fats. When I tell my clients that the good kinds of fat are not only okay, but are actually a necessary part of a healthy diet, they are often surprised. Healthy fat is critical for weight management, for childhood development and for overall health.

It is important to note that not all fats are created equally. There are categories of fats and specific fatty foods which will not contribute to good health. In fact, there are fats which should be avoided all together, including vegetable oils, shortening and margarine. I know that is counterintuitive… Yes, eat your vegetables! But avoid vegetable oils which are inflammatory. Transfats, including partially hydrogenated oils, have a very long shelf life and add an appealing taste and texture to processed foods, should also be avoided.

To ensure you are eating health-promoting fats, especially fats from animal products, always consider the source. I recommend limiting foods with pesticides, antibiotics and hormones, so be particular about your dairy choices. Choosing organic, fresh, whole foods, and animal products that come from safe, sustainable sources is an important key to this. Don’t forget to also consider the source when eating from the sea, to ensure that your fish and seafood is lower in heavy metals.

Lastly, if you have been on a low-fat or fat-free diet for any length of time, it is important to start slowly when reintroducing healthy fats to your meals. Fats are digested with the help of enzymes your body may be a little low on after not needing them for a while. The best approach, like with most things in life, is to take small steps in adding some of these nutrient-rich foods back into your diet.

This list includes healthy foods I have in my kitchen, and it is by no means exhaustive. Some healthy fats you will find in my kitchen are:

+Nuts and Seeds

  • unsweetened almond and cashew milk
  • almonds and almond butter
  • walnuts
  • Brazil nuts
  • chia seeds
  • pumpkin seeds
  • flax seeds

+Oils

  • organic, virgin, cold-pressed, unrefined coconut oil
  • organic, extra-virgin cold-pressed olive oil
  • organic flax seed oil
  • avocado oil

+Whole Food Fats

  • avocados
  • olives
  • dark chocolate

+Animal Fats

  • grass-fed, organic, sustainably raised lamb and beef
  • organic chicken and turkey (the dark meat is very nutritious)
  • omega 3 pasture-raised eggs

+Fish and Seafood

  • wild fatty fish: sardines, black cod, and wild salmon
  • shellfish: oysters, mussels, shrimp, scallops, and crab; calamari or octopus

+Dairy

  • grass-fed butter
  • ghee
  • pasture-raised eggs (cage-free is not enough. I prefer the eggs where chickens have been able to forage and roam, and eat grass as opposed to grain)

-Avoid

  • safflower oil
  • soybean oil
  • sunflower oil
  • corn oil
  • cottonseed oil
  • hydrogenated or partially hydrogenated oils
  • margarine
  • shortening

 

A Nutrition Consultant does not diagnose or treat disease, but is an educator who can work in an integrative and complimentary fashion with a person’s medical treatment program. Information on foodandhearth.com is to be taken as recommendation and not medical advice. Please consult your doctor before making any changes to your diet or lifestyle.

recipes

Lamb Ragu with Carrots, Ginger and Coconut

lamb_ragu

Don’t let the unexpected ingredient combination of this sauce discourage you from trying it!

Of all the meals I make in any given week, of all the soups and stews, this is the recipe that garners the most cheers from my kids! It’s also a versatile recipe… When you first make it, you will have a lamb dish, which serves as a main dish for night number one. The left over sauce will thicken during cooking and will be available as a chunky ragu, which you can serve over cauliflower rice or another grain type (for us that may be an occasional gluten-free pasta night) on night number two.

There are two options for meat when making this stew/sauce: (1) boneless lamb stew meat will mean more meat as a main dish on the first night. I use boneless stew meat if I am having additional dinner guests so I have enough meat for everyone, and no one has to work to get the lamb off the bones. (2) bone-in lamb stew meat can be used if you want to maximize the nutrition in the ragu sauce.

Cooking with bones is a wonderful way to infuse a wide range of minerals and other nutrients into your broths and sauces, including calcium, phosphorus and collagen, giving you and your family an additional nutrient profile, beyond what you will get in more commonly consumed muscle meat.

Either way, this recipe is yummy, delicious and very warming and will give you at least two nights of dinners.

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • about 2 pounds of lamb stew meat (without bones will give you more meat, bone-in will add some additional nourishment to you sauce.)
  • sea salt or real salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 medium yellow onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 2-3 medium carrots, chopped
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 1/2 inch piece of fresh ginger root, peeled and grated
  • 1 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 32 ounces of coconut milk
  • 1–26 ounce box of crushed tomatoes

Directions

  • In a large stockpot, over medium heat, warm olive oil until shimmering
  • Season lamb stew meat with salt and pepper and add lamb stew meat, and brown lightly on all sides
  • Remove lamb from stock pot and set aside
  • Add onion, garlic and carrots to stockpot and sauté until fragrant and tender
  • Add water to the vegetables. If there are brown bits on the bottom of the pan, add water and to help scrape them from the bottom of the pan with a wooden spoon so they mix with the vegetables and water. You don’t want to over-brown the vegetables, but a little bit of browning will add flavor to your overall dish.
  • Add lamb back into the stock pot, along with ginger and allspice
  • Then pour in coconut milk and crushed tomatoes
  • Bring the stew to a boil and then reduce to a simmer over medium heat
  • Stirring occasionally, let stew simmer for up to 2 hours, until lamb meat is fork tender
  • Serve the lamb meat on the first night, along with a green veggie and a starch like sweet potatoes or cauliflower rice.
  • Save the left over sauce for dinner on the following night. You will have about 1 large mason jar of sauce; refrigerate it and serve over pasta or cauliflower rice tomorrow night!