Vanilla Spiced Nut Milk

Merry Christmas, Christmas, nut milk, hazelnuts, Ferrero Rocher, hazelnut milk, vanilla, cinnamon, organic, Christmas baking, Christmas tree, refined sugar free, raw chocolate, chocolate, homemade, recipes, dairy free, gluten free, yoga girl, deliciously ella, madeleine shaw, healthy, nutrition, raw, vegan, health bloggers, food blogI’m one-upping the simple things this holiday season.

Making nut milk is a simple process; it’s just tedious and not so great for the time-constrained demands of life for pretty much everyone.

I sometimes feel like Christmas actually brings out even more stress for many people. Rushing around to get the latest trending gift, having the house decorated, attending one party to the next, etc., etc.! I think it’s even more important that we try and take a step back and just enjoy the moment. Because before you know it, it’s passing you by and if there’s one time of the year where everyone should take part in that, shouldn’t it be the holiday season?

In saying this, I’m just coming down from one of the busiest years I’ve had. Completing a program that is essentially four years of university/college crammed into one year will do that to you. In the last couple of months, I haven’t made time to do much of anything to nourish my body including everything that I talk to people about finding and making the time to do! It happens to the best of us. We all have moments when there’s too much going on. So long as we become aware of this and then begin to take inventory on areas where we could improve on carving out specific time to take care of ourselves- that is the key.

And so onto homemade nut milk! I have previously shared my almond milk recipe, but as it’s Christmas, I wanted to make something that to be honest, required minimal effort but was still a little extra. Nut milk is great way of doing this as there are endless options of nuts and seeds to choose from, plus whatever you’d like to add to flavour the milk. It’s also something that you can choose to make solely for yourself as a special treat that can be added to your morning coffee or blended into a smoothie.

I always remember as a kid having hazelnuts around Christmas time. I also always adored Ferrero Rocher and was given a box to myself each year. It made sense then, to make a hazelnut milk and add to it seasonal spices. The result of which is this delicious, creamy nut milk.

Hazelnuts make a wholesome choice with minerals such as magnesium, manganese, copper, folate, and iron, and vitamins E and B6. They provide plenty of antioxidants including polyphenols (also found in red wine and dark chocolate) to help with signs of aging and reducing the onset of disease.

For richer milk, you may choose to add less cups of water than you usually would (2-3 cups vs. 3-4 cups). I find you don’t really need to strain the pulp as you don’t really get that much, which means you’re getting even more benefit from the entirety of the nuts.

Since making this, I’ve enjoyed it in my hot cocoa and blended into a smoothie with frozen banana and maca for that Ferrero Rocher taste done in a healthy way. Enjoy this yourself by adding your own spices that you love. It makes a delicious treat with some Christmas cookies!

Ingredients

1-cup of hazelnuts soaked for 4 hours or overnight

2-3 cups of filtered water

1 vanilla bean or 1 ½ tsp. vanilla extract

Pinch of spices: cinnamon, cardamom, ginger, nutmeg, etc.

Pinch of pink salt

Optional: ½ tbsp. maple syrup or 1 Medjool date to sweeten

Directions

Soak the hazelnuts before rinsing well and draining. Add to a high-speed blender with 2 cups of water and blend. Scrape the seeds from the vanilla bean and add to the blender with your choice of spices and sweetener. Blend until completely smooth then add to a sealed jar and refrigerate. This keeps well for 3-4 days. Add to smoothies, hot cocoa, porridge, overnight oats, enjoy on its own!

Happy Holidays! xx

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Banana Bread Overnight Oats

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Happy Long Weekend!

Labour Day is always the day of that final farewell to summer if only because it means returning back to routines with school and work.

Making that even easier is prepping ahead with easy to make recipes such as this overnight oats breakfast I shared on The Huffington Post today. These really are one of the quickest things to make, ready the night before you wake, and leaving you with more time in the morning.

Ingredients

1 cup of oats (gluten free if necessary)

1 cup of coconut milk (or milk of choice)

¼ cup of water

1 banana

½ tsp. vanilla extract

½ tsp. cinnamon

¼ tsp. nutmeg

Pinch of sea salt

Handful of walnuts

Optional: 1 tsp. maca powder

Directions

  1. Add the oats, coconut milk, water, vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg, and pinch of sea salt to a bowl and mix together.
  1. Take half the banana, mash with a fork, and add to your mixed oats.
  1. Chop the walnuts and add these to the mix. You can also set some aside to add on top in the morning.
  1. Place the bowl in the fridge ready to have in the morning. Alternatively, you can add your oat mixture to a jar with a sealed lid overnight in the fridge.

5. In the morning, add the other half of banana to your oats as well as any additional toppings of your choosing.

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Festive Waffles


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Waffles for Christmas!

These are the perfect breakfast/brunch item to make over the holidays.

Before you think you’re increasing an already growing manic to-do list, these are actually really easy to make. Plus they have lots of sneaky ingredients that are good for you and no one will even know it.

For the skeptics who are weary of the green, you can tell them it’s food colouring and they’ll be none the wiser.

Enjoy these as they are, top them with fresh fruit such as pomegranate seeds or berries or even some of this delicious dairy-free ice cream!

Enjoy and Merry Christmas! x

Makes 8-10 waffles

Ingredients:

2 eggs, yolks and whites separated

1 cup coconut milk

1 tsp vanilla

1 tbsp coconut sugar

2 ½ tbsp. coconut oil, melted

1 tsp wheatgrass (I used Organic Burst)

1 big handful spinach

½ cup buckwheat flour

½ cup brown rice flour

1 tbsp baking powder

Pinch of sea salt

Directions:

  1. Using a hand blender, whisk together the egg whites until thick and fluffy. Set aside.
  2. In another large bowl, whisk together the egg yolks and set aside.
  3. In a blender, add the coconut milk, coconut sugar, spinach, vanilla, and wheatgrass. Blend until smooth.
  4. Add the blender mix to the egg yolks and mix until combined. Add the flour. Add the coconut oil while whisking everything together.
  5. Fold in the egg whites making sure to carefully keep everything light and fluffy.
  6. Use waffle maker according to instructions, brushing the rest of the melted coconut oil before pouring in the batter.

 

 

 

Banana Berry Smoothie Bowl

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I consume smoothies pretty much on a daily basis. I love making one to accompany breakfast or for an afternoon snack. Sometimes however, they get a little repetitive. You’d be surprised how different it actually seems once you make a smoothie bowl. It sounds silly but just by changing it up to make the smoothie a bit thicker and edible by spoon makes such a difference. This is an antioxidant smoothie bowl of goodness thanks to the blackberries, which is also what gives this its pretty hue of purple.

Switch it up with the fruit you like best, and adorn with toppings according to your taste.

Serves 1

Ingredients:

1 1/2 cups frozen blackberries

1/2 cup frozen raspberries
1/2 cup frozen spinach
1/2 avocado
1 tbsp coconut oil
1 tbsp goji berries
4 tbsp coconut milk

3/4 cup filtered water or almond milk

Optional Toppings: 1/2 banana, chia seeds, extra berries, nuts, seeds, etc.

Directions:

Add everything to a high speed blender until smooth. Add more liquid as needed to thin the mixture to desired consistency. Pour into a bowl and top with whatever you’d like. Enjoy!

PB & J Granola

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I love granola. It’s so much better making your own because you can combine any flavours you like and make something yummy every time. Also, you control what ingredients you consume so things like the amount of sugar it contains is in your control.

This is my latest creation: PB & J Granola or Peanut Butter & Jelly. After the infamous childhood combination this does actually taste quite similarly like tucking into the classic.

I’m not the biggest fan of using peanuts as they are often prone to contamination. However, all things in moderation! Peanut butter does still contain a huge amount of protein. Just make sure you find an organic, non-GMO variety. This ensures the greatest care has been taken into sourcing a chemical free crop.

I’ve used fresh raspberries in this creating a chia seed jam. Combining the fresh berries with the chia seeds provides a sticking capacity to the whole granola mixture.

This may be bit too sweet for a breakfast variety but it makes a great snack post workout or yoga session!

Ingredients:

2 ½ cups rolled oats (gluten-free if needed)

½ cup buckwheat

¼ cup organic peanut butter

¼ cup maple syrup

¼ cup coconut oil

½ cup raspberries

1 tbsp chia seeds

1 tsp vanilla extract

¼ tsp cinnamon

pinch of sea salt

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  1. In a small saucepan on the stove, melt the peanut butter and coconut oil over a low heat. When combined, turn off the heat and whisk in the maple syrup and vanilla. Set aside.
  1. In a small bowl, mash the raspberries with a fork then add the chia seeds and mix well. Set aside to slightly “gel”.
  1. In a large bowl, combine the oats, buckwheat, cinnamon, and sea salt. Pour the peanut butter mixture over and mix well. Then pour the raspberry mixture over and fold everything together until coated.
  1. Spread the mixture onto a lined baking sheet and pop in the oven for 10-15 minutes. Remove from the oven and flip the granola over so that it bakes evenly. Let it bake in the oven for another 5-10 minutes until golden and fragrant.

Night to Day Oats

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My recipe for overnight oats which I’m loving for breakfast at the moment. I’ve been eating them a few times a week for months now but they are currently being consumed pretty much on a daily basis!

Sometimes after I wake up I don’t feel like eating straight away. Or if I practice yoga first thing, I’m really hungry by the time I finish and want to eat something RIGHT after. Overnight oats work in both cases. They are one of the easiest things to prepare and they’re ready whenever you want them for breakfast.

This version is chocolate with berries but it’s easily adaptable to your liking. Enjoy this without the raw cacao and make it vanilla. Add nuts or granola with different fruit. Try adding some shredded coconut or superfoods such as maca. Making it with chocolate actually seems like you’re having dessert for breakfast and who wouldn’t like that?

The first three ingredients are your base. From there, it truly is endless so experiment with different flavour combinations as you see fit.

Ingredients:

1 cup of oats

1 cup almond milk (coconut milk, rice milk, etc.)

¼ cup filtered water

Toppings & Add-ins:

1 tsp vanilla or ½ vanilla pod

1 tbsp raw cacao

1 tbsp maca

½ -1 tbsp maple syrup (date syrup, honey, coconut sugar)

Nut butter

Shredded coconut

Granola

Nuts & seeds (almonds, walnuts, hazelnuts, sunflower, pumpkin, etc.)

Fresh fruit (berries, banana, orange slices)

Directions:

Simply add the oats and your choice of milk to a bowl, mix together, and leave overnight in the fridge. When ready to eat, remove the bowl from the fridge, mix again, and add your toppings. I love mine with the raw cacao, a little maple syrup, sprinkling of chia seeds, cacao nibs, and frozen raspberries.

P.S. You can make this in a mason jar and take it with you on the go in the morning for your commute or to eat at your desk!

Pancake Day

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Shrove Tuesday or Pancake Day although not a typical holiday per say has always been a favourite of mine. I’m not sure if that’s because pancakes were the first thing I learned to make, or that they’re really versatile to play with and quick to make, or because I have always loved them! With the day fast approaching (it falls on February 17th this year- make note!) I altered my usual recipe to be gluten free and dairy free but still healthy and yummy to enjoy breakfast, lunch, and dinner! (Am I the only one who does that?) It was such a treat to have them all day long as a kid!

This is a basic recipe that makes approximately 6 pancakes. You can double the recipe for more servings and you can add in some extra ingredients to what you fancy. A tablespoon of raw cacao makes for chocolate ones or fruit like apples and blueberries make great options. Of course, being Canadian, enjoying them as they are with some maple syrup is one of the best ways I’ll say you can enjoy them!

Ingredients:

1 egg

1/2 cup milk (almond, coconut, etc.)

1 tsp vanilla extract

1 tbsp coconut oil, melted, plus extra for the pan

1/2- 3/4 cup buckwheat flour

1 tsp baking powder

pinch of sea salt

Directions:

1. In a large bowl, add the egg and milk. Whisk together until light and foamy. Add the vanilla.

2. Melt the coconut oil on the stove top then slowly stream into the mix, whisking as you go along.

3. Add the baking powder, salt, and flour until everything is smooth. Set aside for a couple of minutes while you heat your frying pan *If you’re adding anything else such as fruit, do so now*

4. Heat a frying pan on low-medium heat and melt a teaspoon of coconut oil, making sure to coat the whole pan. When it’s ready, take about 1/8 cup of batter and pour into the pan.

5. Allow the pancakes a minute or two to cook. You’ll know it’s ready to flip with bubbles begin to appear and pop on the surface of the pancake. Flip to the other side and allow another minute or so to cook.

6. Complete with the rest of the batter. Add coconut oil or organic butter and some maple syrup, fruit, nuts, a sprinkle of cinnamon or raw cacao.

Enjoy these as you will- they’re so quick and easy to make and you can really play with the flavours. I’ve made them gluten free, dairy free, and refined sugar free however you can substitute organic dairy milk or other types of flour. You’ll find yourself making them more often than not after you try them once. Happy Pancake Day!