Tag Archives: healthy

Biking in the city and a healthy snack!

I simply love summer weekends in the city and, although I haven’t traveled anywhere recently, I feel like Toronto has so much to offer that you just can’t get bored.  This weekend, we went biking to a nearby park, Betty Sutherland Trail, a scenic path alongside the Don River.

We enjoyed the beautiful scenery, the ride was pretty good (approx. 7 km) and took lots of pictures along the way.  I recommend this place if you’re biking, rollerblading,  going for a walk or looking for a great picnic place in the city.

When we returned home, we were of course starving…but luckily these wholesome muffins were waiting for us. This is one of my favourite recipe, delicious, easy to make and relatively healthy. Bon appétit!

Raspberry lemon muffins adapted from eatingwell.com

1 lemon
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 cup non fat buttermilk
1/3 cup canola oil
1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup whole-wheat flour
1 cup all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups fresh or frozen (not thawed) raspberries

Directions:
Preheat oven to 400°F. Coat 12 large (1/2-cup) muffin cups with cooking spray or line with paper liners.
Use a vegetable peeler to remove the zest from the lemon in long strips. Combine the zest and sugar in a food processor; pulse until the zest is very finely chopped into the sugar. Add buttermilk, oil, egg and vanilla and pulse until blended.

Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a large bowl. Add the buttermilk mixture and fold until almost blended. Gently fold in raspberries.  Divide the batter among the muffin cups. Bake the muffins until the edges and tops are golden, 20 to 25 minutes.

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Raw Desserts – The Healthy Alternative

I didn’t know too much about the raw food diet, however lately I’ve come across various websites that promote this lifestyle. I’ve recently tried a few recipes that actually taste great! Since I’m one of those people who can’t live without sweets, I’m committed to incorporate some healthy desserts into my diet. I’ve been working out for a long time, but I need my sweet ‘fix’ every know and then.

The raw food diet is based on unprocessed and uncooked plant foods, such as fresh fruit and vegetables, sprouts, seeds, nuts, grains, beans, nuts and dried fruit. This type of diet has numerous health benefits including increased energy, better digestion, improved skin appearance, weight loss and reduced chance of heart disease. Overall, it contains fewer trans fats and saturated fats than regular diets. At least 75% of food consumed should not be heated over 116 degrees F. For more information including health precautions, cooking techniques, equipment click here.

Here is a latest dessert that I made – a decadent and delicious raw chocolate cake. You can find the recipe here. I purchased  most of the ingredients from a Health Foods/Organic Store. Bon appetit!

 
 
 

 

Raw Strawberry Macaroons

“The food you eat can be either the safest and most powerful form of medicine, or the slowest form of poison”. Dr. Ann Wigmore, N.D

I kind of agree with this quote although I love baked foods. Generally speaking I try to eat healthy, replace anything ‘white’ with ‘brown’ (flour, sugar) and choose low fat dairy products.  However, I do agree that raw food has its benefits including higher nutrient value and digestive enzymes that aid digestion. The only ‘raw’ dessert that I make is Tiramisu which is actually my favourite. I came across this great recipe on Ina’s website who has lots of raw/vegan recipes and also takes great pictures.  Traditionally, macaroons are made either with coconut and egg white or with a coarse almond paste formed into a dense cookie or confection. Not to be confused with French macarons which are completely different in appearance.

If you like coconut, you will definitely enjoy this delicious recipe. Very easy to make. You’ll need a food dehydrator which you can later use to make healthy natural snacks like dried fruit and veggies, but also jerky, homemade herbs and spices.  You can find it at your local Walmart, The Bay or Canadian Tire. Make sure you know what it looks like as many people are not very familiar with it. Ironically, it is posted under ‘Crafts and Hobbies’  category on Walmart’s website which is partly true, but common, in the end it is a kitchen appliance!

Strawberry Macaroons – makes approx. 20

1/3 cup pitted dates
1 1/2 cup strawberries, fresh or frozen and thawed
1/4 cup agave or honey
1 Tablespoon vanilla extract, or 1 vanilla bean, scraped
2 cups shredded coconut

Place dates, strawberries, agave or honey, and vanilla in your food processor. Process into a puree. Add coconut, and process to mix well. Using an ice cream spoon make small balls and place them in the dehydrator. Leave them dry for approx. 4 hours or until they are crisp on the outside and soft inside. They make a unique gift for your friends and/or family.  Enjoy!