A Guide to Feeding our Future

Archive for the ‘Desserts’ Category

The Educated Consumer – Coconut Flakes

By: Hollie M. Hunt-Last, D. C’Ed. ROHP/RHN – Moncton, NB

Coconut flakes

In search of the perfectly shaped coconut product that was both organic and unsweetened, I came across this month’s feature. Coconut is such a life giving food! It has unfortunately been defiled by most manufacturers, through the use of rancid oils and sugars. Shredded coconut is abundant on the market, but flaked coconut is harder to find. There are some recipes that you can really need a flaked coconut for, thus the search. I discovered my find in an unlikely place … Homesense! However, your local health food store, or perhaps a food chain, that has an organic section may carry it.

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Apple Brown Betty

By: Susan Kingston, RHN – Montreal QC

Here’s a wonderful Thanksgiving dessert that’s also gluten-, grain-, dairy-, and guilt-free! Yummmmm!

apple brown betty

Ingredients:

Filling

  • 6-7 apples (or pears), peeled, cored, sliced
  • 3 TBSP honey or maple syrup
  • 1 tsp cinnamon

Topping

  • 1/3 cup pecans
  • 1 cup almond meal (ground raw almonds)
  • 1 TBSP ground flax
  • 3 TBSP honey or maple syrup
  • 1 TBSP coconut oil or butter
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • Pinch of Himalayan Salt
  • Juice of 1/2 lemon

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  2. Peel, core, and slice apples
  3. In a bowl combine sliced apples, cinnamon, and honey; mix well.
  4. Place pecans in a nut grinder or food processor and grind fine (will be 1/3 cup after ground).
  5. In a bowl combine all topping ingredients and mix with a fork until crumbly
  6. Grease a 9×13 inch baking dish with butter or coconut oil, layer apples evenly in dish, pour crumble mixture evenly over fruit mix, and pour lemon juice overtop
  7. Bake until top is golden brown and fruit is hot and bubbly, 40-50 minutes

The Educated Consumer: Super Lemon Cake, Super Easy!

By: Hollie M. Hunt-Last, D. C’Ed. ROHP/RHN – Moncton, NB

Super Lemon, Moist Cake!

Super Lemon, Moist Cake!

Here is a super easy way to entertain … everyone loves Lemon! This is a moist, delicious cake that is GLUTEN FREE. I will say, that there is a bit of dairy protein added to it. If you are lactose intolerant, this might not be an issue, however, if you are allergic to casein or whey, best stay away.

Most families who are newly dealing with gluten intolerance are not ready to tackle dairy too. They need to know that there are easy products that can replace what they already know as ‘food staples’, like cake mixes. Most of my cakes are made from scratch – but that is not the reality for all people. This is a compromise food. Most yellow cakes are full of synthetics, gluten and toxic colourings; this mix would certainly be a healthier option! I like to add extra lemon juice to the mix and one can easily substitute lactose free milk or coconut milk in the batter.

For frosting? I use real lemon juice mixed with icing sugar. I grind my icing sugar in a vitamix using organic raw cane sugar – which takes only about 30 seconds! Add a splash of vanilla and orange extracts, some rind and some of this “True Lemon” and you have real zing! I add some of the real lemon to the cake mix too … In my house, we like it good and tart. In this way, we are educating people to ‘mix things up’ a little and improvise … and eventually they will be thinking “outside the box” entirely!

AUGUST Feature Food: Blackberries

By: Suzanne Brett, RHN – Victoria, BC

Hi everyone!  My sweet babe is due in a couple weeks, so this is the last month of posts for me until I have a baby with a somewhat regular sleeping schedule.  So read up and take this time to review last years posts too!  Don’t forget to comment and share!

We finally had a tad of rain…or shall I say a massive thunder storm, here in Victoria last week.  Lightning hit just down the street from us! WHOA!  It was fun!  Out of that lovely storm, came bright juicy blackberries!  Thank you rain, just what we needed after a drought.

blackberries for the month of August

As we know, many berries are known for being high in antioxidants. Antioxidant-rich foods are foods that are proven to reduce free-radical damage to our cells.  These free-radicals can be disease (especially cancer) causing. Did you know, that blackberries are one of the highest in antioxidants and most available to us? Most places in Canada are flourishing with this invasive delicious bush. Don’t just walk by…make sure you carry a jar or a basket on your walks, just in case you run into some trail-side or road-side berries.

Blackberries, like many other berries are rich in nutrients and not so much in calories.  So, munch away! The high amounts of vitamins and minerals like A, C, K, manganese, folate, magnesium and potassium make these berries particularly helpful in supporting our bones, tissues and mucous membranes, as well as the G.I. tract and the immune system, and our production of collagen production, iron and enzymes.

Not enough reason to eat them?…How about for lowering your cholesterol levels?  Blood sugar control? Or for brain power?

Blackberries are an amazing brain, hormone and heart food whose flavanoids and high fiber help to increase blood flow to the heart and brain; therefore decreasing harmful inflammation that can lead to high cholesterol, memory loss and learning difficulty.  Like many other berries, they are also known for decreasing insulin spikes and drops, helping balance blood sugar levels.

So, find a friend or take the family and go pick some local blackberries! If you end up with so many that you can’t just snack on them, try my tasty popsicle recipe:

Blackberry Fig Popsicles

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So, I’ve been planning on making popsicles for when I’m in labor.  Today, I finally had my chance. I made blackberry fig popsicles.  I added lemon and used maple syrup as the sweetener so that I’d have a few extra electrolytes to increase my endurance. The same thing could be done for anyone who’s been working, playing or training hard, especially in the sun.

Feel free to use just blackberries and forget the figs, or use any other berry/fruit as well.

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cups fresh blackberries
  • 4 peeled fresh figs
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/2 cup sweetener (maple syrup, honey, agave… your choice!)
  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice (or less if you prefer them less tart)

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Directions:

  1. Heat water, sweetener and lemon juice in a small sauce pan over medium heat until slightly syrupy. Approx 15 mins.
  2. Purée the blackberries and figs in your blender.
  3. Strain the purée through a fine-mesh sieve. Press down with a spoon to push the juice through.  You should be left with aprox. 2 cups of purée.  Discard the seeds.
  4. Stir the lemon syrup into the purée.
  5. Spoon or pour the purée into your popscicle molds.
  6. I used these awesome silicone push pops (Figured they were less messy for holding during contractions 😉 )
  7. If you decide to use wooden popscicle sticks, make sure you have a place in your freezer where they can stand straight, so the sticks stay in place.  Or freeze them half way (about 30 mins) and then insert the sticks to continue freezing.

JULY Feature Food: Cherries

By: Suzanne Brett, RHN – Victoria, BC

cherries for the month of July

So excited about cherries this month! It’s our first summer in our new house, and we have 3 cherry trees in our backyard. We weren’t sure if they would produce anything, as they hadn’t been maintained previously. Also, they were just sooooo tall that, we thought most of the cherries would be out of our reach and only accessible to our winged friends. Luckily for us, all 3 produced beautiful cherries and with a ladder, we harvested many pounds from the 1st one to produce. We let the birds have the rest. 😉

This was mostly last month, but many places in N. America are beginning their cherry season now. Victoria is a tad early. We’re still not certain the variety of these cherries; we’re thinking they’re ‘Bing’ or ‘Sandra Rose’. (If anyone knows, feel free to comment).

In any case, onto the lovely things about cherries I’d like to share with you today…

ANTIOXIDANT rich! Cherries are one of the most potent antioxidant fruits available to most of us in this region. What this means for you is that they can help reverse the affects of cancer causing free-radical damage and prevent future harm. They are also rich in fibre, helping to bind to toxins in the body and help eliminate them through defecation. The rich minerals in cherries also help with this process by softening the elimination pathways. These minerals are Magnesium, Calcium, Phosphorus and Potassium. They actually contain MORE potassium than strawberries do! Talk about a refreshing summer fruit! Cherries are a great post workout snack, helping to replenish those lost minerals and decrease muscle aches and pains.

chopped cherries in a heart

Cherries are known for reducing swelling and inflammation, particularly good for reducing symptoms of gout and diabetes, as well as the risk of stroke. They are generally a great fat buster. So munch on some cherries to shed a few pounds too!

The awesome thing about cherries is that they’re great for insomniacs, or anyone with any sleeping disturbances. Naturally high in melatonin, a hormone produced by our pineal glands that helps to regulate our sleep/wake cycle, cherries make a great sleep retriever.

So, after we picked all of these cherries, snacked on some, shared some with our friends and family I then made some cherry chocolate muffins. Mmmmmm…. For me this was a great way of storing easy snacks in the freezer for after the baby comes and I don’t have time for baking. 😉

Feel free to try this easy recipe with your local cherries and reap the amazing summer benefits now and in the winter months too, if you freeze.

CHERRY MUFFINS:

Luscious cherry or dark chocolate cherry???

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Ingredients:
  • 1 ½ cups gluten-free oat flour (or grind your own oats)
  • 2 cups sprouted wheat or spelt flour, or your favorite all purpose gf flour blend
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1¼ tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp sea salt
  • ½ cup raw brown sugar, coconut sugar, maple syrup or honey
  • ¾ cup melted butter or coconut oil
  • 1¼ cup milk, almond milk or coconut milk
  • 2 tsp vanilla bean extract
  • 2 ½ cups fresh cherries, pitted and chopped coarse
  • ¾ cup chopped dark chocolate or chocolate chips (optional)
Directions:
  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
  2. Combine flours, baking powder, salt and sweetener in a mixing bowl.
  3. In a separate bowl mix together milk or dairy-free alternative. Add butter (or coconut oil) and vanilla extract. Stir.
  4. Add wet to dry ingredients and whisk until combined. Do not over mix. Fold in cherries and 3/4 of the dark chocolate.
  5. Spoon into 9″ greased or paper-lined muffin tins and top with remaining chocolate. Fill them up nicely for good muffin tops, or not so much for little muffins.  (I did them smaller for a more freezer friendly size).
  6. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until golden brown and a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Let rest in pan for 5 minutes, then transfer to a cooling rack to cool completely.
  7. Serve warm with butter, non-dairy alternative or enjoy plain. Store in an airtight container to keep fresh – transfer to freezer after a day or 2.

The Educated Consumer: Chocolate Covered Strawberries

By: Hollie M. Hunt-Last, D. C’Ed. ROHP/RHN – Moncton, NB

Chocolate Covered Strawberries

Chocolate Covered Strawberries

This month’s feature is cool and refreshing for the summertime! Dole has recently created frozen chocolate covered fruit as a low fat treat. They come in flavours of strawberry, Banana, Pineapple.  They are low in sugar and surprisingly satisfying! While the fruit may not be organic, and the chocolate may have ‘traces of dairy’ but is generally safe for most people. As a compromise food, this scores better than high fat, high sugar frozen bars, etc. In the grocery aisle, in my opinion, this product would be the winner. Enjoy!

Coconut Creamsicles

By: Susan Kingston, RHN – Montreal, QC

creamsicle

This simple recipe is both brain and body friendly, and is totally guilt free! Coconut milk is full of healthy fat for proper brain function; fresh orange juice is a great source of vitamin C;  and raw honey is chalk full of amino acids, vitamins, minerals and friendly immune-supporting bacteria. So have some guilt-free fun with your kids and create these cold sensations 🙂

Yields:

6-8 Creamsicles

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup orange juice (fresh)
  • 1 cup coconut milk
  • 3 TBSP raw honey
  • ¼ tsp orange extract
  • ½ tsp vanilla extract

Directions:

  1. In a medium bowl, whisk all ingredients together.
  2. Pour mixture into popsicle molds. Let set for 30-60 minutes; then add popsicle sticks.
  3. Freeze for another 4-6 hours or until frozen.
  4. When you’re ready to serve, run some warm water along your popsicle mold to loosen the popsicles and serve immediately.