Mother’s Day Pancakes

I absolutely love pink…it just makes me smile. And my kids love pancakes. So for Mother’s Day brunch I decided to create a pink pancake recipe that everyone would enjoy. The best part…they helped me make it and kids in the kitchen is the best Mother’s Day gift I could ask for. Here is the recipe in case you want to try it too.

Ingredients

1 and ¼ cup milk (any milk is fine…buttermilk, cow’s milk, coconut milk, almond milk….etc.)

1 cup frozen strawberries or raspberries

2 eggs (or 4 egg whites)

1/4 cup grapeseed or canola oil

¼ cup Manitoba Harvest hemp hearts

¼ cup chia seeds

¾ cup unbleached white flour

1 and ¼ cup whole wheat flour

2 Tbsp. baking powder

Instructions:

  • 1) In a mixer of your choice (Vitamix, Blentec, Ninja, etc.) blend together 1.25 cups milk of your choice (I like to use coconut milk), 1 cup frozen berries, ¼ cup hemp hearts, ¼ cup oil, and 2 eggs (or 4 egg whites). Set this aside
  • 2) In a separate bowl mix dry ingredients (flours, baking powder, and chia seeds) together.
  • 3) Pour wet ingredients into dry and mix together…but don’t overmix.
  • 4) Cook pancakes on a frying pan of your choice. I prefer an electric one as I find they are less likely to stick or burn.
  • 5) Serve with your choice of yogurt and fruit for a delicious and nutritious meal for mom!

Until next time….stay healthy!

Mango Curry Chicken Pizza

I grew up eating traditional pizza, but for years now I have not enjoyed it. Don’t get me wrong, I like pizza…but I like it dressed up in new ways. I love BBQ chicken pizza with roasted broccoli and red onion. I love Mediterranean pizza topped with grapeseed oil, garlic cloves, arugula or spinach, sundried tomatoes, and black olives. And one of my all time favourites is this Mango Curry Chicken Pizza packed with flavor and nutrition your whole family will love!

Ingredients:

1 Whole wheat pizza crust

1-2 chicken breasts (cubed or sliced)

1 cup Pizza sauce or Tomato sauce

3-4Tbsp. Tandoori curry paste (or 3-4 Tbsp. avocado oil mixed with 2-3 Tbsp. of red curry powder…I like the one from Chicago Spice House)

1 Tbsp. Honey or Agave

1-2 tsp. Pureed garlic

1 Red pepper (sliced)

1 Mango (sliced)

½-3/4 cup old cheddar cheese (shredded) OR Daiya dairy free cheese

Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F
  2. Mix together tomato sauce and tandoori curry paste (or oil and curry mixture).  Spread this over pizza.
  3. In a non-stick fry pan, cook chicken breasts in water until no longer pink inside.
  4. Drain excess water, and then add the garlic, remaining curry paste and honey or agave.  Mix together and cook until warmed through.
  5. Spread over pizza, cover with diced red peppers and pieces of  mango.  Sprinkle with cheddar cheese (preferably low fat) or Daiya dairy free cheese.
  6. Heat in oven until cheese is melted and toppings are heated through. I find 15-20 minutes works well.

I like to serve this with a fresh arugula salad topped with diced green apple, halves red grapes, almonds, and a honey mustard dressing but you could pair it with any salad or just cut up fresh veggies.

Until next time….stay healthy!

Promega Banana Muffins

Looking for a breakfast or snack food packed with quality protein and omega 3 fatty acids? Look no further! These muffins are packed with nutrition and flavour AND have no added sugar!!! You can also “dress them up” as I have in the picture above. This mini version of the muffin is topped with Yoso Chocolate Coconut Milk Yogurt and a raspberry. You could also use Greek yogurt and/or any other fruit you and your little ones enjoy!

Ingredients

1 cup oats (ideally steel cut quick cooking oats)

1 cup whole wheat flour

1 cup unbleached white flour

¼ cup Manitoba Harvest hemp hearts or Baby Brain Organics

¼ cup chia seeds

½ Tbsp. baking powder

½ Tbsp. ground cinnamon

1 cup bananas (about 3 large bananas)

1/3 cup unsweetened applesauce (or alternate fruit puree)

1/3 cup canola oil

1/3 cup Greek yogurt

2 eggs

½ Tbsp. vanilla

Instructions

  1. Mix dry ingredients together and set aside.
  2. Mash bananas and beat eggs then add these together along with applesauce, oil, yogurt, and vanilla.
  3. Add the dry and wet mixture together and stir until moistened, but do not over-stir.
  4. Spoon into muffin pan and bake at 375 degrees F for 14-17 minutes for mini muffins and 22-28 minutes for “regular” size muffins.

Makes 18 regular size muffins or 36 mini muffins.

Feel free to add dried fruit or nuts for added nutrition and flavor too!

Until next time…stay healthy!

Mussels!!!

My husband and I celebrated our one year anniversary with a road trip to the East Coast of Canada. Up until that point, I had never tasted a mussel. I always thought that the texture would be odd and was fearful of how I would react if I couldn’t chew and swallow without making a scene! Can anyone relate? I have heard from others that they have the same concern. But this one afternoon, while in Mahone Bay, Nova Scotia we came across a restaurant that served only mussels. We decided it was now or never and we never looked back. The mussels were out of this world amazing!!! I couldn’t believe that I had gone so many years without experiencing this food that was rich in protein and omega 3 fatty acids and quite easy to prepare.

Once home from our trip I decided to make our own version. I was shocked at how inexpensive they were and how fast they are to make. Over the following 9 years I have created many broths that I like to cook mussels in but I will keep this to a reasonable length and share two with you now…one of which we enjoyed tonight.

First of all you need the largest pot you have as it is a lot of liquid, and then the mussels take up space as well. In terms of amount of mussels to purchase, it depends on everyone’s appetite, but I tend to plan on about 1-1.5 pounds per person served with a generous salad.

Broth 1

4 cups of water

5 cups of tomato or Clamato juice (or tomato sauce works too)

1 large can of No Salt Added diced tomatoes

1 red onion, diced

1 cup of frozen peas

1 Tbsp. minced garlic

1 Tbsp. avocado or canola oil

1 Tbsp. lime or lemon juice

Broth 2

4 cups water

3 cups white wine

1/4 cup avocado or canola oil

2 Tbsp. minced garlic and/or dill

1 red onion, diced

1 red pepper, diced

1 cup mushrooms, sliced

Instructions

Bring either of these mixtures to a boil, add rinsed mussels and continue to boil for about 3 minutes or until you see that most mussels are open. At this point you can serve them or you can scoop them with a little bit of broth into a baking pan and sprinkle with feta or parmesan cheese and pop them under the broiler for 2-3 minutes or in the oven at 400 degrees for 5-7 minutes.

fullsizerender-12In this photo, the mussels are just starting to open. It happens really quickly and is fascinating to watch. If any mussels do not open, this means that they were not meant to be consumed, so just leave them in the bowl.  The rest will open like the picture below and are ready to enjoy!
IMG_9664.JPG

You can easily use other herbs and spices and sauces to get any flavor that you enjoy. Bottom line is that you need a liquid base to bring to a boil and there is not limit from there.

Hope that you enjoy these and would love to hear any new combinations you come up with in the comment section!

Until next time, stay healthy…

 

 

 

 

Healthy Valentine’s Options

Are you hoping to enjoy a few valentine’s themed treats this weekend, but do not want to overload on sugar? I am with you!!! Here are a few things that I will be adding to our family’s plates over the weekend to celebrate without sacrificing on our health.

  1. Strawberries – Fresh strawberries, whole or sliced, make an amazing red pop on any plate. Add them to cereal, oatmeal, pancakes, waffles, yogurt, quinoa, spinach salad, mixed with other fruit, or just on their own. Strawberries are packed with vitamin C which is a great antioxidant. Antioxidants help to slow down the course of aging, and help prevent heart disease and cancer.
  2. Raspberries – Fresh or frozen, raspberries have a rich red colour. Fresh, they add a warm feel to a plate of food and when added from frozen into oatmeal or yogurt, they make a fun swirl as they melt. They are also a wonderful addition to a smoothie to make it a rich red colour.
  3. Pomegranate Seeds – These super foods add a delicious crunch to salads, cereal, and yogurt. They are jam-packed with vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants and they look amazing!
  4. Tomatoes – I like to add baby tomatoes to salads or slices of tomato to a supper plate to add to the festive feel. They are also a fun red addition to eggs or egg whites. Tomatoes, like strawberries, are full of vitamin C, and they also are en excellent source of lycopene. Lycopene is a caretenoid that specifically helps to reduce cancer risk. For the best source of lycopene, try to cook your tomatoes slightly or consume them with a source of fat such as avocado or olive oil.
  5. Watermelon – This sweet fruit is consumed more in the summer, but is a great valentines choice. You can cut out heart shapes and serve it to kids or adults for a nutritious snack or desert. Pair it with other red fruits or vanilla Greek yogurt to dip it in. It is sure to be a hit. And life tomatoes, watermelon is a great source of lycopene.
  6. Red Peppers – Again, these can be served fresh on salad or main supper place or cooked stove top in a stir fry or with onions in the oven. They can also be used for stuffed peppers. Try to use healthy stuffing options such as ground chicken, quinoa, and lots of diced veggies. No matter how they are prepared, they offer an awesome red “pop” to a meal, along with lots of vitamins, minerals, and phytochemicals.
  7. Salmon – Salmon has a lovely pink hue to it, which makes it a common choice for a romantic valentines supper. Serve this on top of quinoa and add roasted beets (described below), steamed cauliflower, and fresh cut tomatoes and red peppers to the plate and you have a heart healthy, nutrition packed, festive plate that everyone will enjoy. (This is my main course meal for a valentines dinner we are hosting with friends this weekend.)
  8. Heart Shaped Pancakes– This one is a must! You can shape them on your own use a cookie cutter for the shape 🙂 Then add lots of red fruit on top!IMG_4330
  9. Beets – Roasted beets are super easy and SO packed with nutrition. They are also a common hit with kids as they are nice and sweet. I like to peel, dice and roast mine with mushrooms, red onions, peppers, parsnips and/or leeks. I drizzle grapeseed oil on top and bake at 375 for about 35 minutes. They come out melt-in-your-mouth. IMG_8208
  10. Lasagna or Manicotti – This is a great choice for a family valentines supper. Kids tend to love lasanga and it is red…so these factors make it a hit for “love day” at home. You can make your lasagna even healthier by using ground chicken and black beans in place of meat, whole grain or rice noodles, low fat cottage cheese, and lots of veggies in the sauce.

I hope this leaves you craving healthy foods for Valentine’s weekend. Wishing you all a weekend full of love, cuddles, and laughs with those you adore most.

Until next time….stay healthy!