Chia Power Porridge with Mango & Fig

April 14, 2014

IMG_2258This is a super simple breakfast or snack that boasts a powerful punch of fibre, protein, essential fatty acids, and a good dose of calcium too!

There is no cooking required for this porridge making is super fast, you can even prepare this in the evening and keep it in a sealed container int the fridge for an easy breakfast on the go.

I used diced mango and fig, 2 of my favourite fruits, feel free to use an combination of fruit that you have on hand, fresh berries are particularly yummy.

Chia Power Porridge with Mango & Fig

Ingredients:

  • 2 tbsp chia,
  • 2 tbsp hemp
  • 1 cup organic and fortified plant-based  milk
  • diced mango and fresh figs

Directions:

  1. in your favourite breakfast bowl combine the chia, hemp and milk, stir and let sit for 5 minutes or so to absorb the liquid
  2. top with mango and figs or any fruit you have on hand

 

Fastest Soup Ever

March 22, 2014

As the snow and wind are swirling outside, I’m craving something warm and nourishing, trouble is I’m tired and don’t feel much like cooking, and the fridge is looking a little bare! Luckily I live very close to a couple of amazing natural food stores, and in no time I was home with a few key ingredients for a simple soup.

This is my quickest soup yet – 10 minutes start to finish; it’s tasty, and of course full of nutrients, you guessed it, one of them is kale.

The kale is included in a product from Cookin Greens called Athlete’s Mix (a frozen mix of kale, spinach, chard, red pepper and white beans), and the ravioli is from Rising Moon Organics, I used the Spinach Florentine filled with a soy ricotta. Both products are frozen so are great staples to have on hand. The broth of the soup is both vegetable soup stock and miso paste, together the add a depth of flavour and loads of extra nutrients. I used Cold Mountain brand Mellow White Miso.

Kale and Ravioli Soup with Sweet Potato and Miso

Ingredients

  • 3 cups vegetable stock
  • 1 package frozen Rising Moon  Spinach Florentine Ravioli
  • 1/2 package Cookin’ Greens Athletes Mix
  • 1 small organic sweet potato, peeled and diced small
  • 1/2 onion diced small
  • 1 jalapeno pepper diced small (no seeds)
  • 1-2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 4 tbsp light coloured miso paste

Directions

  1. In a large soup pot bring 3 cups of organic vegetable soup broth to a boil
  2. Add 1 package frozen Rising Moon  Spinach Florentine Ravioli, 1/2 package Cookin’ Greens Athletes Mix, the onion,  jalapeno, and sweet potato
  3. Reduce heat and simmer for 8 minutes, remove from heat
  4. Stir in 1-2 tbsp balsamic vinegar, and the miso paste. The miso gives the soup some depth of flavour so don’t leave it out
  5. Serve topped with whole grain organic croutons
  6. Curl up in front of the fireplace and enjoy.

Note: replace frozen Cookin’ Greens Mix with 3 cups fresh kale, cut into small pieces.

 

Quick and Easy Quinoa + Kale Bowl

March 16, 2014

Quinoa + Kale Bowl

This is one of my go to recipes, it cooks up in under 30 minutes and tastes delicious! This is also a variation on one of the staple recipes in the 5 Day Fat Blast online cleanse, a recipe everyone loves.

In the picture above I used Quinoa + Kale and topped with cherry tomatoes, beets, zucchini and yellow pepper. I used a cool kitchen gadget called a Spiral Slicer that I purchased online on Amazon.ca, it turns ordinary veggies into noodles, and makes all salads so much more interesting. Of course you can also use a grater if you don’t have a Spiral Slicer.

Quick and Easy Kale + Quinoa Bowl

Makes 4 servings

Salad ingredients:

  • 1 bunch of kale, washed, stems removed, and cut into thin strips
  • 1 cup brown rice
  • 1 beet, grated
  • 1 small zucchini, grated
  • 1 large red pepper, diced small
  • 1 small red onion, minced
  • Optional: one 14 ounce can chickpeas (drained)
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Tahini Miso sauce ingredients:

  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 2-4 Tbsp. water
  • 6 Tbsp. tahini
  • 2-3 tbsp miso
  • ¼ tsp. garlic powder or 1 garlic clove, minced
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Optional toppings:

  • Chopped walnuts or slivered almonds
  • Dried cranberries (unsweetened)
  • Diced avocado

Directions:

  1. Bring 2 cups water to a boil, add quinos, lower heat to simmer, cook for 15 minutes or until water is absorbed. Remove from heat and keep covered.
  2. As soon as you take the quinoa off of the burner, minced onion and kale, on top of the quinoa, cover the pot and let sit for 5 minutes.
  3. After 5 minutes, transfer the quinoa and veggie mixture into a large bowl, add beet, zucchini and red pepper and optional chickpeas.
  4. To assemble the bowl, divide among 4 plates, top with  additional toppings of walnuts, dried cranberries, and avocado if desired. Drizzle the bowls with 2 tablespoons of tahini sauce.

*Any remaining sauce can be stored for up to one week. The tahini sauce is also great on a salad or over mixed steamed vegetables.

Blissful Banana Pancakes

March 4, 2014

bananapancakes

It’s Shrove Tuesday, and according to Wikipedia, pancakes are associated with the day preceding Lent because they were a way to use up rich foodstuffs such as eggs, milk, and sugar, before the fasting season of the 40 days of Lent. The liturgical fasting emphasized eating plainer foods. In many cultures, this means no meat, dairy, or eggs

These pancakes were a good kick start to Lent, because of course they already had a healthy twist, made with whole wheat flour, almond milk, flax, and of course bananas.We topped them with lots of diced berries and a drizzle of pure maple syrup – Divine.

If you observe Lent you have a wonderful opportunity to fuel your blessed body with Pure Food for the next 40 days, check out all our rockin’ vegan recipes and experience the amazing connection between clean food and a clear mind, get started with our recipe below!

Blissful Banana Pancakes – makes 6-8 pancakes

Ingredients

  • 1 cup whole wheat or spelt flour
  • 1 tbsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/8 tsp sea salt
  • 1 cup non-dairy milk, such as almond milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 tsp ground flax mixed with 3 tbsp water
  • 1 medium sized ripe banana, sliced thin

Directions

In a large bowl combine the flour and baking powder, add the cinnamon and salt and stir to combine. In a small bowl, combine the non-dairy milk, vanilla and flax-water mixture and stir through. Add the wet mixture to the dry and stir through until just well combined, if it seems a bit thick add a tbsp more non-dairy milk. Stir in the banana slices

Heat a non-stick skillet over medium-high heat for a few minutes and then reduce to low. Scoop the batter into the skillet to form pancakes and let cook for a few minutes until small bubbles start to form on the outer edge of the pancakes and then the center. Flip and cook on the other side for a few minutes.

Top with fresh sliced fruit and pure maple syrup.

Vegan Chocolate & Almond Butter Fudge

February 13, 2014

ChocolateAndAlmondFudge-850x400-3

 

 

 

 

This recipe from MindBodyGreen is not only delicious and decadent but it’s also good for you and super simple! It only takes five minutes to prepare and you only need five ingredients!

 

Ingredients

  • 1 cup coconut oil
  • 1 cup almond butter (you can also use unsalted crunchy peanut butter)
  • 2 cups raw cacao
  • 1 cup dates (pitted)
  • 1 to 2 pinches of unrefined sea salt

Preparation

Soak your dates in hot water for about 20 minutes to make them soft and sticky.

Carefully melt your coconut oil on very low heat.

Place all your ingredients, except the almond butter, in your high speed blender and blend until soft and well combined.

Add the almond butter at the end to keep the crunch.

Spread evenly in a tin or container, or – for a special occasion – press into specially shaped candy molds!

Place in the fridge for about one hour.

Enjoy!

If you like this recipe, check out Elation Centre’s Recipe Page with tons of healthy and delicious, plant-based recipes!

Cold-Busting Ginger Tea

January 9, 2014

Image 2

This tea is incredibly easy to make and has immune boosting properties to help combat nasty cold and flu bugs. This has been my go-to remedy whenever I feel a cold coming on.

The lemon in high in vitamin C and the ginger and honey are both know to help boost the immune system, ginger as well helps to clear sinuses and combat nausea.

Here are the simple steps to brew Cold-Busting Tea

you will need:

  • juice from 1/2 fresh lemon
  • 5-6 slices of fresh ginger (remove peel if not organic)
  • 1 tbsp honey (raw and unpasteurized is best, but use what you have)
  • your favourite mug
  • tea strainer (optional)

To your favourite mug add:

  • lemon juice and honey
  • place the tea strainer in the mug and add ginger slices
  • if you don’t have a strainer add the ginger right into your mug
  • pour boiling water into your mug and let everything steep for 5 to 10 minutes
  • remove the tea strainer, you can also leave the ginger slices in your mug, they kind of float around the bottom and don’t really get in the way.
  • Curl up on the couch with a good book and blanket and enjoy.

More great cold remedies

LearningHerbs.com is another amazing resource for homemade herbal cures, John and Kimberly Gallagher run the site which is well know as the best herbal resource out there. Here is a link for “Eight Simple Secrets for Treating a Cold Naturally”

Raw Nanaimo Bars!

December 12, 2013

nainamo bars

This recipe is from Simply Dish, and specifically their FaceBook page. This is one of the best dessert/sweet treat recipes I have made in a long time!! The recipe can look a bit daunting but it’s not at all, just 3 simple steps. I bought all the ingredients at my local health food store, very easy to find. Go ahead and make these you will be sooooo happy you did!

From Simply Dish “It’s no secret…we all love nanaimo bars and with the holidays coming up this is one recipe that you’ll want to share or print to wow your guests. No one will believe that these decadent little treat are actually quite healthy and so simple to make. You could double the batch and store them in the freezer.”

Before you get started, soak one cup of dates for at least four hours. Line a loaf pan with parchment paper and you’re ready to go!

For the base…

  •  1c of soaked dates
  • 1/2c of cacao powder
  • 1/2c of unsweetened shredded coconut
  • 1/2c of almonds

Process the above in your food processor until it all comes together…about thirty to forty five seconds. Press the mixture into your lined loaf pan, flatten the top and set aside.

For the middle layer…

  • 1c of unsweetened shredded coconut
  • 1/2c of coconut oil
  • 1/4c of coconut nectar (or agave)
  • a pinch of turmeric (optional)
  • 2 tbsp of coconut flour

Process the first four ingredients in your food processor until smooth, remove the blade and stir in your coconut flour. Now you’re thinking…turmeric? Yep. A little goes a long way and it will help you achieve the yellowy look, similar to a ‘traditional’ nanaimo bar. And I personally think it levels out the sweetness a bit. Yay! The mixture will seem a bit moist, that’s only because the coconut oil has melted from the heat of the food processor. Don’t worry, it all works out. Pour the mixture over your base and smooth out the top.

Place it all in the freezer for about thirty minutes.

For the top chocolate layer…

  • 1/4c of cacao powder
  • 2tbsp of coconut oil
  • 1/4tsp of vanilla powder (optional)

Place the ingredients into a stainless steel bowl and rest the bowl over a pot of simmering water just long enough for the oil to melt. Give it all a good stir and drizzle it over the top of the first two layers. Because the first to layers have been in the freezer, you’ll want to spread the chocolate fairly quickly so that it doesn’t harden unevenly.

And that’s it folks!

Slice with a cool, dry knife and store the bars in the fridge.

Powered-Up Oatmeal Cookies

November 22, 2013

IMG_1409

This is a recipe I created in the summer for my good friends who were taking part in the Rideau Lakes Bike Tour, riding their bikes from Perth to Kingston, Ontario and then back the next day.

Our cottage is right along the route, so I met my cycling friends at end of our cottage road, and flagged them down as they were nearing my makeshift tea and cookies stand set up in the back of our pickup truck. After a quick refuel with my Powered-Up Oatmeal Cookies and a cup of tea they were off.

 

I brought in cookies to share with the students at our Friday morning Power Yoga class, after a challenging sweaty yoga class, a quick snack to bring your energy up is always welcome.yoga cookie

These cookies are fantastic to refuel after exercise and are a healthy and delicious pick-me-up snack any time of the day.

They are gluten-free, although you can use any type of flour you want, and I used chia seeds as opposed to eggs to add extra kick of healthy fat. They’re sweetened with maple syrup and banana, and super easy to make.

Preparation Tip: I used a hand-held wand blender to combine the oil, maple syrup, soaked chia seeds, vanilla and banana. This ensures everything is well combined and I think it helps to make the cookies nice and moist. You could also use a stand blender to combine everything.

 Donna’s Powered Up Oatmeal Cookies

(gluten free and vegan) Makes one dozen cookies

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cups uncooked gluten free rolled oats
  • 3/4 cups All-Purpose Gluten Free Flour (or brown rice flour)
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • pinch salt
  • 1/2 cup maple syrup
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil melted (you can also use safflower, canola, or other neutral oil)
  • 1/4 tsp vanilla
  • 2 Tbsp soaked chia seed
  • 1 ripe medium-sized banana
  • 1/2 cup raisins

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Mix dry ingredients in a medium bowl -
  3. Combine oil, maple syrup, vanilla, chia and banana in a blender or using a hand held wand blender, make sure to blend it well enough that there’s no chunks of banana.
  4. Place rounded spoonfuls of dough onto a cookie sheet and bake for about 7-10 minutes, until light golden brown. Remove from oven and let the cookies finish baking on the cookie sheet for about 5 more minutes.
  5. Makes about one dozen cookies


Soaked Chia Seed

In a small jar combine 1 tbsp chia seed and 1 cup water, stir and in about 30 minutes you will have a gel. Store in the fridge for up to 4 days. You cad add soaked chia to smoothies or oatmeal or use as an egg replace in baking, 2 tbsp replaces 1 egg.

Holy Cow! Power Yoga & a Bake Sale for Soul Shakti!

November 12, 2013

It all started with our wonderful yoga teacher Elaine who, at the young age of just 25, is already someone to look up to. Elaine has founded Soul Shakti, an organization with the goal to educate and empower disadvantaged women in the slum areas of India with the tools and knowledge to improve their physical, emotional, and spiritual wellbeing. How can you not be inspired by that?! One of Soul Shakti’s programs is to send one of these women to an Ashram in India to do her Yoga Teacher Training. That way, she will be able to help Elaine teach yoga and carry on her legacy when Elaine comes back to Canada.

Here at Elation Centre we all know how empowering the journey of Yoga Teacher Training is, and that’s why we decided to do this Shakti Festival to raise money to enable one woman in India to get the chance to live this wonderful experience!

So join us on Sunday, November 24, 2-4pm for this great fund-raiser.333498_953950774056_236645787_o

  • 2pm: Donna leading a Power Yoga Class to live music by Elation teacher Ellen Francis. Donation $20.00
  • 3:30pm we will have a bake sale followed by a vegan bake-off with the chance to win a 10-class pass!

There is lots of ways for you to help!

You can join Donna’s Power Class for a minimum donation of $20, you can contribute baked goods for the bake sale (they don’t have to be vegan!), or you can just buy some of the delicious baked goods! Every dollar will go directly to Elaine and this wonderful cause.

If you want to have a chance to win the 10-class pass though, you have to submit your favourite vegan recipe, and our jury will then decide who gets the Blue Ribbon (and the 10-class pass of course!)

But why does is have to be a vegan bake-off you ask ??? Well, the main reason why Yogis tend to eat a vegan diet is compassion, seeing the divinity in every creature. At first glance you might say, ‘but it doesn’t hurt a cow to be milked’, or ‘what’s wrong with eating an egg that the chicken would have laid anyways?’. But if you take a closer look on how those animals are treated, you might think twice about having your milk and cookies at night.

But apart from the compassion factor, there are medically proven health benefits on skipping dairy and eggs. You will consume less cholesterol and saturated fats and instead add more fibre and ‘good’ fats to your diet.

And now you will ask me ‘But how on earth can I bake some decent cookies without my stick of butter and my 2 eggs?’.

It’s easier than you think! There are lots of vegan options to replace those crucial ingredients. Cows milk can obviously be replaced by soy, almond, rice or oat milk and the stick of butter can be switched for some healthier oil or vegan margarine. Replacing eggs might seem a bit more difficult, but even there you have lots of vegan options like mashed banana, apple sauce, silken tofu or ‘flax eggs’ to name just a few. For a very detailed list of dairy and egg substitutes and how to use them in your recipe, check out this great website: http://www.theppk.com/vegan-baking-the-post-punk-kitchen-shows-you-how/

And if making your own recipes vegan still seems too daunting of a task for you, just recipe section and you will find vegan recipes (like the one below)!

So go ahead, get baking and when you have found a yummy finger-licking good recipe, submit it to our vegan bake-off for the chance to win a 10-class pass!!!

Click here for more information on the Shakti Festival. We hope to see you there!

 

Pumpkin Spice Cookies

Ingredients:

  • ¾ cup maple syrup
  • ½ cup molasses
  • ½ cup coconut oil
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups spelt, wheat flour, or rice flour (use 1 tsp Xanthan gum if using gluten-free rice flour)
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 2 cups rolled oats (not instant!)
  • 1 tablespoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree (made fresh or canned without any additional sweetener or spices)
  • 2 Tablespoons fresh ginger, finely grated
  • 1 cup vegan chocolate chips (PC brand chips are vegan)

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Put maple syrup, molasses, oil and vanilla in a blender and blend until smooth. If you don’t have a blender, use a fork and beat until combined.
  3. In a large bowl, combine flour, baking powder, salt, oats and spices until fully mixed and combined. In a small bowl, combine pumpkin puree, ginger and maple syrup mixture. Blend until smooth.
  4. Add wet mixture to dry mixture and combine just until the dough is uniform. Add nuts and mix just to incorporate. This dough may be a little more moist than traditional (butter and sugar-based) dough you may be used to.
  5. Take 2-tablespoon amounts in your hand and form into cookie shapes, about 1/3 inch thick. Place on a cookie sheet with ½ to 1 inch between each.
  6. Bake for 15-18 minutes, until edges are brown and tops are dry and solid.
  7. Let cook 1-2 minutes on baking sheets and transfer to a cooling rack.pumpkinspicecookies

Enjoy!

Note: These are perfect to indulge in after a yoga class, hike, run, or a cold bike ride home from work. Some substitutions you can try are using different types of squash (delicata or buttercup would be great) or sweet potato. Substitute chocolate for raisins, dry cranberries or nuts – or a combination of nuts, fruit and chocolate!

 

Moroccan Spiced Pumpkin Stew

October 9, 2013

Moroccan Spiced Stew

This stew just oozes fall comfort food, loaded with warming spices such as cinnamon, cumin and ginger (you could also 1/4 tsp of nutmeg), and sweet root vegetables.

Fall is a time to settle into routine, to get grounded and slow down; a simmering stew with earthy spices and root vegetables encourages us to sit down and take time to savour our food.

This is so simple to make you won’t believe it, it is done in 30 minutes, including chopping time, and leftovers are even more delicious!!

Ninja Tip: The recipe calls for cooked quinoa, if you don’t have any, you can add 1 cup of rinsed uncooked quinoa to the stew and cook it with everything else!

Moroccan Spiced Pumpkin Stew
  • 1 medium onion, small dice
  • 2-3 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 
1-2 tsp ground cumin
  • 2 tbsp fresh ginger finely grated
  • 1-2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 3-4 dates, pitted + chopped
  • 2 carrots, chopped (1/2 inch pieces)
  • 3 cups diced pumpkin, peeled + chopped
  • 
1 28-ounce can crushed tomatoes (preferably fire-roasted)
  • 3 cups vegetable stock (or more, depending)
  • 1 yellow pepper, stemmed and chopped (1/2 inch pieces)
  • 2 cups cooked quinoa (or see Ninja Tip in the notes above)
  • 2 cups kale, torn into pieces
  • 
salt + pepper
 to taste

Directions:

  1. Add all ingredients, except cooked quinoa and kale,  to a big soup pot. Bring to a boil, turn heat down to simmer and cook partially covered for 20 minutes. Note if using uncooked quinoa, add 1 cup at this point.
  2. Add cooked quinoa and kale and simmer for 5 more minutes
  3. Remove from heat, add salt and pepper to taste
  4. Makes 4 large serving

 

 

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