Tuesday, May 31, 2011

NYC...what is it about you?

So you guys may have noticed the lack of posts lately, this is due to the fact that Jenn is saving some of her creations for a body ecology e-book that she is putting together for the end of summer. AND because we took a vacay to NYC! The most happenin' place on earth! It feels weird being back in our hometown in Canada, everything is so much slower pace, but we will admit, we were pretty exhausted by the end of our trip. I was looking forward to relaxing a bit because as you know, New York is everything but relaxing.

All in all it was a very successful trip we saw some fab broadway shows (Avenue Q, Book of Mormon, and How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying, we were sitting in the front box (for How to Succeed) - so close to Daniel Radcliffe! who is an absolute sweetum, he can really sing and dance! If you have a chance to see "Succeed" go see it, it was one of the best shows I've seen, all I could say at the end was WELL DONE! Everything was so sleek and together, very satisfying. Book of Mormon was another story, it was incredible, I can't believe Matt and Trey (the creators) actually did this, after it was over Jenn and I were just confused as to how it actually existed. We already knew most of the jokes before going in to see it and still found it hilarious. The concept was just so clever, it totally met and exceeded my expectations.

And Avenue Q was amazing, of course.

I'm looking forward to watching the Tony's this year, I have a feeling it will be pretty epic.

Serious amazing times!
An ellie in the MET! (me and my little sis, Brooke)

Little sis and Jenn in central park

Sweet Potato Rolls from Cafe Blossom (vegan restaurant), the almond sauce was what made it :)
Another highlight was eating at Cafe Blossom, a vegan restaurant (it was the first that popped up when I searched vegan restaurants NYC). Everything was so fresh and packed with veggies like these Sweet Potato Rolls. The salads were rather simple but the cashew ice cream definitely made up for it. I bought a bag of cashews at the Whole Foods there so you can be sure we will be attempting a re-creation. 

The cashew ice cream that our mom said was the best thing she ate on the whole trip.

Me with an ellie I found just wondering around on the street, lol.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

The Sweetest Potato Brownies

I threw a sweet potato in the oven as I usually do, then I remembered my carob. I recently received some dark roasted carob from Nuts Online, if you've ever had regular standard (medium) carob you know that it tastes lighter and more malty than cocoa. Dark roasted carob tastes more bitter and in my opinion has an almost identical flavour to cocoa. I was beginning to think that they mixed up the carob with the cocoa, but there was still that slight caroby after taste that I know so well. Healthy brownies are hard to come by in the healthy food world, these were not only chocolatey and moist, but they had an amazing flavour complexity, the sweet potato, maple syrup and coconut sugar create this unique earthy sweetness that sort of reminded me of caramel. Give these a try, if you are using medium carob though please see the NOTE down below.

We submitted this recipe to Kim and Ricki's Sweet or Savory challenge. Go ahead and submit your carob inspired recipes as well!

One of my fave companies!! Quick delivery even to Canada, it took 2 days and only 10$ shipping.

1 1/2 cups gluten-free flour blend
1/4 heaping cup of dark roasted carob powder (*see note if using medium carob)
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup oil (I used almond)
1/2 cup coconut sugar
1/4 cup maple syrup
1/2 cup sweet potato puree
1/2 cup water
1/3 cup walnuts (optional)

Tahini-Carob Icing:
1/4 cup tahini
2-3 tbsp of water to thicken (water actually thickens tahini...weird huh?)
2-3 tbsp carob (4 tbsp if using medium carob)
Drops of stevia to desired sweetness
Pinch of salt

Preheat oven to 350F. Combine dry ingredients, including carob in a medium bowl. In separate bowl combine sugar and other wet ingredients. Add wet to dry and stir gently until combined, add nuts if desired. Pour into a brownie pan, Bake for 25 minutes or until a knife comes out clean.

*NOTE: if using medium carob you're going to need to add more in (2-3 tbsp more) then you'll have to add more water and oil to balance out the texture and perhaps less coconut sugar because medium carob is sweeter than dark carob. Use your best judgement, the final batter product should be a brownie batter consistency.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Mocha Tart

This is actually a recipe from Mother's Day, we kind of forgot about it which is hard to believe considering how amazing it was! You would never guess it was low-glycemic, gluten-free and vegan. Seriously amazing, you guys have GOT to get some dandy blend. This was such a nice, fluffy and light dessert after a hearty veggie meal.

1 can full fat coconut milk
5 tsp dandy blend or alternative instant coffee
1 tbsp lucuma powder
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
pinch of salt
2 tbsp coconut oil
1 packet powdered white stevia

Crust: (I didn't measure everything exactly for this crust, you may need to add more oil)
3/4 cup ground almonds
1/2 cup coconut shredded, ground finer
1/4 cup carob powder
1/4 cup tahini
2 tbsp coconut oil
1 packet powdered stevia
Pinch of salt

Combine ingredients for crust, press into an 8-inch pie pan/plate. You may have extra crust leftover, which is nice to sprinkle on top. Save it! Combine ingredients for filling. Pour filling into crust, cover with plastic wrap, set in fridge to firm over night. Serves 8.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Cheesy Hemp Dip (w/ Manitoba Harvest Hemp Seed Butter)

Have you guys heard of hemp seed butter?  Manitoba Harvest makes a really good hemp butter that I've been using in hummus and now in this cheesy hemp dip. It's definitely a "healthy tasting" nut butter, not as creamy as say peanut butter, but that's cause you're getting your full spectrum of omegas, I mean come on, not many butters can do that! This dip is really good with celery (cue the cheese whiz :P), as well as crackers, tortilla chips, in sandwiches and on top of salads.
Then you top it off with hemp seeds...like so...

And there you have it: a dreamy creamy cheese dip

2 tbsp hemp nut butter
2 small cloves garlic
1 red bell pepper
1 tbsp chopped sweet onion (possible to do without it)
Juice of half a lemon
1 cup sprouted sunflower seeds
1 tbsp nutritional yeast flakes
1 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp paprika
Sea Salt, to taste (I used quite a bit)
Pepper, to taste

Combine all ingredients in food processor. I made mine in a magic bullet, it worked fine. (If using a bullet though, blend the wetter ingredients first, then add in the sunflower seeds and stir in the hemp seed butter at the end). Add garlic powder before salt so you can adjust the saltiness accordingly.

Monday, May 9, 2011

Quinoa w/ Moroccan Salsa

I feel bad sometimes, with my specific diet, my mom doesn't always know what to cook for dinner, so she usually just, doesn't...lol.

But the other day I was pleasantly surprised when she made up this moroccan inspired salsa, vegan, gluten-free and definitely health-freak worthy.

I just put it on top of quinoa and it was very delicieux. She was happy to make dinner for once, and I was happy to eat it :)

All mixta mooxta

  • 3 red peppers, roasted and coarsely chopped
  • 5 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup chopped black olives
  • 1/2 cup red onion, finely chopped
  • 1/3 cup cilantro (fresh, chopped)
  • 1/4 cup raisins
  • 3 tbsp lemon juice
  • 2 tbsp chopped fresh mint
  • 2 tsp grated orange peel
  • 1/2 tsp (scant) cayenne

Heat 1 tablespoon oil in small skillet over medium heat. Add cumin and cinnamon; stir until fragrant, about 1 minute. Pour oil mixture over chopped roasted red peppers. Mix in olives and rest of ingredients. Season salsa with salt and pepper.

Cook quinoa, and top with salsa. Stir in if desired.