Healthy Healing Recipes

"Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food."
Hippocrates

 
 
Acai Almond Berry Bowl June 6 2017

Acai Almond Berry Bowl
June 6 2017

Acai Almond Berry Bowl

I was introduced to the magic deliciousness of Acai Bowls only a few weeks ago. I've shied away from the bowls for years, no matter how beautifully created, because in my mind I saw a bowl full of carbs, sugar and calories. Since today, I rarely count calories, but eat for health and energy, I took another look at these beautiful bowls and decided to create my own healthy version. This recipe includes the powerful healing power of acai and wild blueberries, the prebiotic powerhouse of chia seeds and the high-quality protein of raw almond butter.

Make sure to purchase pure unsweetened acai, most packs are highly sweetened with cane sugar. Be careful with granola too, as many are sugar-laden and the healthiness of the bowl will be defeated in one felled swoop.  I don't make my own healthy granola, yet (Stay tuned!), but am lucky to have found a delicious Cardamon Cacao grain-free granola from a local artisan shop. Check your local juice bar, many make and sell their own gluten-free non-processed sugar granola. Feel free to use any combination of berries for the toppings. I prefer to keep the base the same because nothing beats the power of wild blueberries. 

This bowl is simple to whip up in less than 10 minutes. So easy you will be apt to have this anytime of day when hunger strikes. So good, I would venture to say, I would have this for dinner!

Ingredients

Serves  1

For optimal nourishment, always use organic non-gmo ingredients. 

  • 1 pack of Sambazon Acai Pure and Unsweetened, thawed per package directions.
  • 1 cup frozen wild blueberries, divided
  • 1 banana, divided
  • 2 tbs of chia seeds
  • 1/4  to 1/2 cup of almond milk*
  • 2 tbs of raw almond butter, divided
  • 1 tbs of raw wildflower honey
  • 1/4 cup of granola

Method

  1. Reserve 1/2 cup of blueberries, 1/2 banana and granola and 1 tbs of raw almond butter.
  2. Add all ingredients in order from Acai to honey into your Vitamix or high-powered blender. Blend till smooth.
  3. Pour into your bowl.
  4. Top with blueberries, sliced bananas, granola and remaining raw almond butter.
  5. Enjoy the magic!

*If you like a chunkier acai mix, use 1/4 cup of almond. I prefer more of a smoothie consistency and therefore use approximately 1/2 cup of almond milk.

 
Wendy's Guacamole May 23, 2017

Wendy's Guacamole
May 23, 2017

Wendy's Guacamole

I make the best guacamole, seriously. For decades family and friends have murmured between mouthfuls of the green chunky creaminess that I should be bottling the stuff. I did consider it momentarily, with a bubbled vision of me in a commercial kitchen mixing up the magic day to day, and then I literally felt my soul leave my body and not in a good way. Do I love chopping, mixing, tossing the earth's goodness in my kitchen?  Yes, I love the physical aspects of working in the kitchen, it is a meditative space for me.  Though, what I love most is the creative process. That inspired moment when you know that the sage growing on your kitchen counter would simply transform the butternut squash soup simmering on the stove. So here is my secret weapon for spreading pure mouthwatering happiness this Summer. Be warned, this stuff is super delicious, so make sure to save a little jar for yourself. The green goodness will disappear before your very eyes, literally in seconds.

Ingredients

Serves  4

For optimal nourishment, always use organic non-gmo ingredients. I prefer organic avocados, but they can be prohibitive when feeding a crowd, so feel free to use conventional since they are not on the list of the Dirty Dozen.

  • 3 just ripe medium haas avocados, halved and cut in large chunks
  • 2 plum tomatoes, seeded, diced and juice removed
  • 1/3 cup of red onion or Spanish onion, finely diced
  • 3 radishes,  finely diced
  • 2 medium serrano chiles or 1 jalepeno, seeded and finely diced
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1/4 tsp of herbs de provence
  • 1/4 cup of cilantro, finely chopped
  • 1/2 tsp or to taste of Himalayan sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp or to taste of 5-pepper blend or black peppercorns, freshly ground
  • 1 lime, juiced

Method

  1. Place all ingredients in a bowl in the order of ingredients listed into a serving bowl.
  2. Mix with a large fork, do not mash, until you the mixture melds. Do Not Overmix. 
  3. Taste and add salt and pepper to taste.
  4. Serve with traditional blue corn chips, organic and non-gmo of course! For grain-free, use plantain chips, my favorite way to enjoy guacamole.
  5. Enjoy and watch it disappear!
 
Mediterranean Quinoa Salad May 11, 2017

Mediterranean Quinoa Salad
May 11, 2017

Mediterranean Quinoa Salad

Beautiful salads are a mainstay in my diet. Now with the warm weather season upon us, I love to play around with seasonal ingredients. This quinoa salad is a favorite among my family and friends, and loved by carnivores and vegetarians alike.  Hearty, healthy and delicious goodness in one bowl is the perfect dish for your annual barbecues whether you host them or bring the dish as a guest. Omit feta for a vegan gluten-free version of this salad, equally delicious!

Ingredients

Serves  4

For optimal nourishment, always use organic non-gmo ingredients.

  • 1 cup of sprouted tricolor quinoa
  • 2 cups of baby spinach
  • 1 cup pitted kalamata olives
  • 1 cup of baby heirloom tomatoes, halved
  • 1 small seedless cucumber, sliced and quartered
  • 1 large or 2 small Haas avocados, sliced and cut in bite-sized chunks
  • 1 lemon, juiced
  • 1 minced garlic clove
  • 1 cup of chopped parslety
  • Himalayan salt to taste (approx. 1 tsp)
  • Grounded 5-pepper blend to taste (approx. 1/2 tsp)
  • 3 tbs of avocado oil
  • 6 ounces of feta cheese, crumbled 

Method

  1. Cook  sprouted tri-color quinoa, per package directions and cool. Can be made and refrigerated a day ahead.
  2. In a large bowl mix olives, tomatoes, cucumbers, avocados, garlic, parsley with olive oil, lemon, salt and pepper to taste. Let sit to room temperature for 30 minutes
  3. Add quinoa, spinach and feta to marinated veggies. Stir all ingredients thoroughly with a large fork.
  4. Pour salad into a large rectangular serving platter, top with feta cheese.
  5. Enjoy!

 

 
 
Vanilla Almond Oatmeal with Berries April 28, 2017

Vanilla Almond Oatmeal with Berries
April 28, 2017

Vanilla Almond Oatmeal with Berries

Few things are more soothing to me than a warming bowl of oatmeal on a cold blustery winter morning. Come Spring and Summer when the temperature can be 80 degrees by noon, steaming  is not  a descriptive I want for my morning breakfast.  This is where the genius of overnight oats comes to the rescue. When I first heard of overnight oats, I was a skeptic. Enjoying warm oatmeal since my grade-school days, and the idea of cold oatmeal left me, well, cold. Until my dear cousin Sandy, who loves anything that can be prepped ahead of time, whipped up a batch and shared with moi. Whoa! Genius! Love! Pure easy, healthy deliciousness poured, stirred and stored, simply waiting to be enjoyed. What's not to love?

Ingredients

Serves  1

For optimal nourishment, always use organic non-gmo ingredients. Any combination of berries works deliciously in this recipe. Apples work beautifully too, simply substitute maple syrup for the honey.

  • 1/2 cup of gluten-free rolled oats
  • 1 tbs of  white chia seeds
  • 1 cup of almond milk
  • 1/4 tsp of vanilla extract
  • 1/8 tsp of cinnamon
  • Pinch of Himalayan salt
  • 1/3 cup mix of raspberries, strawberries and blackberries.
  • 1/4 cup of chopped raw almonds
  • 1 tsp raw wildflower honey (optional)

Method

  1. In a 1 pint sized ball jar add all ingredients, omitting berries and honey. 
  2. Stir all ingredients thoroughly with a fork.
  3. Cap tightly and refrigerate 6 hours or overnight.
  4. Before serving top with berries, drizzle with raw wildflower honey and chopped almonds.
  5. Serve and enjoy!
 
Simply Brussel Sprouts  April 21, 2017

Simply Brussel Sprouts
April 21, 2017

Simply Brussels Sprouts

I love, love, love roasted veggies! Sadly, I didn't discover the magic of roasted vegetables until my mid-20's. As a Latina, a vegetable side dish on the dining table consisted of iceberg lettuce, tomatoes and a drained can of Del Monte peas and carrots plopped on top for garnish. I discovered the earthy deliciousness of roasted veggies by a colleague who introduced me to yet another crazy and not-so-crazy diet. This particular diet consisted of no breakfast or dinner, but enjoying at lunch an enormous portion of roasted veggies and, wait for it, a loaf of Italian bread. Long story short, I did meet my goal of losing 5lbs of weight despite the loaf a bread, but what I gained was the introduction to the superb magic of roasting vegetables. Drizzle some olive oil, sprinkle some salt and pepper, pop in an oven and you can have the intoxicating mix of sweet, salty, tender and crunchy in one healthy bite. This is the way I enjoy brussel sprouts, no need for any sauce or pieces of fat-laden bacon to make them yummy. These are a perfect afternoon snack and the kiddies with love them too!

Brussel sprouts are super healthy, a fabulous source of vitamins C, K, B1, B6, folate, manganese, choline, copper, potassium, phosphorus and omega-3 fatty acids. Plus they are super delicious!

Ingredients

Serves  approximately 4

For optimal nourishment, always use organic non-gmo ingredients. 

This recipe is a super simple recipe, but keep in mind that each oven can vary in degrees of temperature, so you may have to either increase or decrease cooking time. 

  • 14- 16 ounces of  brussel sprouts
  • 2-3 tbs of  extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tsp of Himalayan salt
  • 1 tsp of 5-peppercorn blend

Method

  1. Pre-heat oven to 425 degrees.
  2. Wash, trim brussel sprout stems and slice length-wise in half.
  3. Place on a pyrex rectangular 15 x 10 tray, drizzle with olive oil, season with salt and pepper. Toss to coat.
  4. Bake for 25 minutes till tender and golden brown, tossing half-way through cooking time.
  5. Serve and enjoy!
 
Vanilla Bean Cantaloupe Smoothie April 14, 2017

Vanilla Bean Cantaloupe Smoothie
April 14, 2017

Vanilla Bean Cantaloupe Smoothie

As the Universe would have it, a food-loving craving woman with an excuse to add extra calories into her diet because she was 'eating for two' suddenly couldn't fathom eating, even her favorite foods, as nausea racked her body 24-7. Such was my fate during my pregnancy with my eldest son, Justin, only to be repeated again when I carried my youngest Andrew. I literally survived on salads, P + J sandwiches ( which I never cared for and still don't), a weekly treat of chocolate cheese cake, and cantaloupe milkshakes. My hubby whipped up batches of milkshakes every night for fear that I was starving both me and the baby! This was several decades ago, my babies are now healthy, soulful, loving and inspiring men who make their Mom proud every day. As for my diet, in these past decades, it have evolved from the typical American diet to one that focuses on healthy plant-based, whole and super foods. One thing has remained somewhat constant on my menu go-to, a cantaloupe milkshake or rather smoothie. This recipe has morphed from a high-fat, sugar-laden processed shake (previously made with Haagen-Dazs vanilla ice cream) to a healthy healing vegan superfood smoothie.

Spring and Summer is the perfect time of year to enjoy this smoothie. So good, my carnivore and trans-fat muffin loving hubby will pick up cantaloupes just so I can whip up a batch, as his evening dessert. Your kiddies or grand-kiddies  will love this one too, cantaloupe sweet and chia seed filling. Great for breakfast, a summer afternoon pick-me-up or as my hubby enjoys it, dessert. Enjoy!

Ingredients

Serves 1 adult or 2 kiddies

For optimal nourishment, always use organic non-gmo ingredients. Organic cantaloupes are not easy to find and not on the Dirty Dozen List, so feel free to use conventional with ease. 

  • 1 quarter of a cantaloupe, cubed into large chunks 
  • 1  cup of homemade vanilla bean almond milk or store brought unsweetened almond milk
  • 1/2 cup of full fat coconut milk*
  • 1 tbs of homemade almond butter or store-bought unsweetened raw almond butter
  • 2 inch piece of vanilla bean, if using store-bought unsweetened almond milk
  • 1/3 cup of walnuts
  • 1 tbs of maca powder**
  • 1 tsp of vanilla extract
  • 1 tbs of maple syrup
  • 2 tbs of chia seeds
  • 2 tsps of cinnamon
  • Pinch of Himalayan salt

Method

  1. Reserve one tsp of cinnamon and vanilla bean, if using.  Add all ingredients into your Vitamix, Blendtec or other high-speed blender. 
  2. Scrap tiny vanilla beads from 2-inch snipped pod into ingredient mix, if using store-bought almond milk.
  3. Blend, pour into glasses and top with reserved tsp of cinnamon. Enjoy!!

*For full fat coconut milk, refrigerate a can of coconut milk overnight. Separate coconut from water. Use full-fat coconut in smoothies, puddings and mousse.  I refrigerate and use reserve coconut water to cook vegan oatmeal and for berry smoothies. Stay tuned for recipes.

**For kids use only 1/4 tsp of maca powder. This superfood is wonderful for energy and though a non-stimulant should be introduced to children in smaller doses.

 
Ginger Lime Green Juice April 7th, 2017

Ginger Lime Green Juice
April 7th, 2017

Ginger Lime Green Juice

This month I celebrate the 5-year anniversary of my love affair with green juice. The affair began quite innocently. I found myself searching, yet again, for a healthier way to lose weight, boost energy and ditch my addiction to sugar. I'd heard of the burgeoning juice craze and decided that this might be a healthy alternative to my fall-back diet of calorie counting. On a mission, one late rainy Friday evening , I ran to my favorite bookstore for an all-about 'green-juice cookbook'.  As the Universe always knows what you need, waiting for me was Kris Carr's classic best-selling book Crazy Sexy Diet. Filled with excitement, I was absorbed cover to cover and completed the book within the course of the weekend. I diligently researched, purchased and had my treasured Omega juicer delivered, and by the following weekend was on my way to my juicing journey. That April of 2012, I committed and accomplished my first 28-day juice fast. I lost 20 pounds, my energy was off the charts, my skin cleared up, and my mood lifted. The results critically changed my way of thinking about food and diet. Hippocrates was correct, food is thy medicine.

Over the years my juice regimen has evolved. Today, I commit to a juice fast several times a year in conjunction with the seasons. I juice everyday starting the morning with straight-up celery juice, and in the afternoon I'll enjoy a veggie-fruit juice with Ginger Lime Green being my favorite go to on most days. This version is fresh, alkalizing, clears my head and I swear my skin elixir.  So if you are looking to boost your energy, mood or simply bring a glow to your skin this juice is your ticket!

Ingredients

Serves 2 - 3 sixteen ounce servings.

For optimal nourishment, always use organic non-gmo fruit and veggies. Fresh press juice can be stored and enjoyed within 72 hours, though I like to enjoy within 48 hours. For centrifugal machines, juices may be stored and enjoyed within 24 hours.

  • 1 large handful of lacinato kale 
  • 2 1-inch pieces of ginger, peeled
  • 2 limes, peeled and quartered
  • 2 medium sized granny smith apples, or 1 large
  • 5 large stalks of celery
  • 2 cucumbers, unpeeled

Method

  1. Scrub and wash all ingredients. Peel ginger and limes. Organic cucumbers do not need to be peeled, however if you like a lighter taste it's best to peel them.
  2. Chop, quarter or slice fruit and veggies sized to fit the mouth of your fresh press juicer.  Minimal chopping is required for a centrifugal juicer. 
  3. Fresh press all ingredients in the following order, ginger, lime, kale, apple, celery and cucumber. With a juice press, you may need to feed with alternate pieces of kale and apple to smoothly process the kale. 
  4. Strain juice into glasses and enjoy, or strain into ball jars, if storing. If you like fiber with your juice, no need to strain. 
  5. Enjoy!!!
 
Raw Salted Cacao Walnut Smoothie March 31, 2017

Raw Salted Cacao Walnut Smoothie
March 31, 2017

Raw Salted Cacao Walnut Smoothie

I have had a decades love affair with chocolate. As a teenager I literally had a 'Chunky' bar every single day, yes every single day. It's been decades since I've had one of these sugar-laden processed bars, but my love and craving for chocolate remains the same. Today, I feed my cravings with the magically anti-oxidant powerhouse of raw cacao. This smoothie is the perfect RX for when that serious craving for chocolate hits, even at 5 am! Wonderful as a breakfast smoothie, mid-afternoon pick-me-up or an evening dessert.  No matter the time of day this smoothie will feed your body and soothe your soul.

Ingredients

Serves 1 or 2 as a dessert

  • Approximately 1.5 cups almond milk 
  • 1/3 cup of walnuts
  • 1/4 of an avocado, 1/2 an avocado for tiny fruit
  • 2 tbsp chia seeds
  • 1 tbsp + 1 tsp raw cacao 
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup or coconut sugar
  • 1 tbsp maca powder 
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp of vanilla extract
  • 1 tbsp raw cacao nibs
  • Pinch or two of Himalayan salt

Method

  1. Reserve half the walnuts along with the cacao nibs. Throw the rest of your ingredients with one pinch of Himalayan salt into your Vitamix and blend until really smooth. 
  2. Let the smoothie set for 30 minutes to allow the chia seeds to soften.
  3. Sprinkle top with a pinch of Himalayan salt, the cacao nibs and remaining walnuts and savor!
  4. For a  breakfast smoothie, blend the night before and store in a Ball glass jar in the fridge. When ready to serve top with Himalayan salt, cacao nibs and walnuts. A delicious and healthy start to your morning!
 
Turmeric + Ginger Latte March 24, 2017

Turmeric + Ginger Latte
March 24, 2017

Turmeric + Ginger Latte

Seems like the latest 'health treat' besides everything matcha is Turmeric Lattes. I've been searching for ways to incorporate turmeric into my diet, yet had no clue how. Honestly, I'm not a fan of curries, so was really wary about the taste of turmeric. In addition, I'm very much into using all my senses when it comes to cooking and eating, and the bright yellow look of turmeric lattes left me feeling queasy. Yikes! Stepping into my warrior, I took the plunge and started testing and came up with a recipe that I think you will love as much as I do.  This drink is soothing, calming and totally satisfying after the end of a day. Indulge prior to hitting the pillow, and I'm certain that you will have the most pleasant of dreams. 

My version of a turmeric latte features the addition of ginger for an extra anti-oxidant boost. Don't fret about the black peppercorns, you will not taste them. The peppercorns are used to boost the antioxidant effects of the turmeric; if the idea leaves you feeling cold, omit them. Enjoy!

Ingredients

Serves 2 

  • 2 cups almond milk (preferably homemade )
  • 1 tablespoon of coconut oil
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½ inch piece of turmeric, grated
  • ½ inch piece of ginger, grated
  • ½ ground cinnamon
  • 5 black peppercorns (optional)
  • 1 tablespoon of coconut sugar or honey
  • Pinch of  pink Himalayan salt

Method

  1. Combine all ingredients, except honey, in a medium hot saucepan and gently warm ingredients while whisking to combine. Carefully strain and transfer hot milk into a blender, add honey and blend in your Vitamix. Please follow your Vitamix guidelines in handling of hot liquids. 
  2. Blend until frothy, about 30 seconds. Serve hot and immediately drink. If you don't have a Vitamix, you can utilize a hand immersion blender or with some elbow-grease froth with a whisk.