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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Raw Chocolate Chia Pudding

gluten free, dairy free, raw chocolate chia pudding, chia pudding, overnight chia pudding, easy breakfast, overnight oats

This raw cacao chia pudding tastes amazing. It’s good for you as well, which might be hard to believe as it looks and tastes decadent enough to be a dessert. However, with all the ingredients added to this it’s incredibly healthy and filling enough for breakfast or anytime.

Chia seeds are a bit strange when you first experiment with them and can be a bit of an odd texture but I promise when mixed with raw cacao, it tastes delicious and will have you eating them in no time!

They’re great in smoothies, sprinkled on top of porridge or yogurt, or added to baked goods. You can even use them to replace eggs in recipes.

Probably one of the best things about this recipe is that it takes no time at all to prepare. Just mix everything the night before and you’ll wake up to a bowl full of superfood goodness!

Ingredients:

To serve 1

1 cup almond milk (or other milk of your choice)

¼ cup chia seeds

½ tsp vanilla extract

½ tsp maca

½ tsp cinnamon

1 tbsp maple syrup (you could use raw honey or date syrup as well)

1 tbsp raw cacao

Directions:

  1. In a bowl, mix together well your milk and chia seeds allowing the seeds to become incorporated with the liquid.
  1. Set aside for a couple of minutes to “gel” then mix the rest of your ingredients in until everything is nicely combined.
  1. Pop in the fridge overnight until you’re ready to eat in the morning. Sprinkle with whatever toppings you like.

I used hazelnuts and flaked coconut but you could add anything you like: nuts and/or seeds, granola, fruit, etc. Raspberries would be a great addition with the chocolate!

 

 

Yogi Energy Balls

yoga energy bites, gluten free, dairy free, sugar free

Sometimes even with the best intentions and in making something you’ve made countless times, things with cooking and baking don’t quite work out the way they’re meant to.  But sometimes that actually happens for a reason and that reason in this case was a delicious one! I was aiming to make my usual nut butter but in soaking the nuts beforehand I was left with nuts that simply wouldn’t become “butter”. Even though soaking nuts is a healthier way to consume them, it doesn’t necessarily make for good nut butter.

Enter these energy balls. I’ve added some healthy ingredients full of flavour for a quick bite size snack that hits the spot when you need it. These are raw, vegan, gluten free, dairy free, and refined sugar free, but still so very yummy. They’re perfect before or after yoga class, as an afternoon pick me up, or even just for dessert! They’re super easy to make, taste chocolatey and indulgent, and are full of natural protein from the hemp hearts. Try them out yourself:

Ingredients:

1/2 cup cashews

1/2 cup hazelnuts

4 Medjool dates

1 tbsp coconut oil

2 tsp coconut sugar

2 1/2 tbsp raw cacao

3 tbsp hemp hearts

Pinch of sea salt

Directions:

Soak the cashews and hazelnuts overnight (or minimum 4 hours) When ready to use, drain and rinse the nuts then blend in food processor until fine and crumbly. Add the dates and pulse for a few seconds before adding the rest of the ingredients, blending until fully combined.

Make the balls by taking tablespoons of the mixture and rolling into shape. Place on a lined baking tray and pop in the fridge until ready to serve.

Makes approx. 14 energy balls