Mint helps to ease cramping and nausea. Sometimes during a detox or cleanse, the body responds with nausea or stomach cramping. While ginger stimulates, mint soothes. Both help in instances of food poisoning or the stomach flu; ginger stimulates the production of bile to move the undigested or offending substance through the system to provide eventual relief, while mint soothes the stomach (making the process less painful).
Mint-Infused Berry Smoothie
1 cup frozen raspberries
5 frozen strawberries
1 cup frozen blueberries
1/2 frozen banana
2 cups water
20 fresh spearmint leaves
1 lime (juiced)
a few drops liquid stevia extract, optional, to taste
Combine berries with 1 cup water and purée until smooth. Add the banana, lime juice, and 1/2 the mint (10 leaves). Blend until smooth. Taste-test to determine whether to add more mint leaves. Adjust to your liking, blending after each addition. If desired, add a few drops liquid stevia extract.
The key to a detox or cleanse lies in the ability to eliminate unnecessary foods and substances. To cleanse from that bottle of Pinot Noir or the sweet potato fries at the hipster establishment you dined at yesterday with an unsuccessful date you paired with via OK-Cupid, you might find yourself at a loss for what to eat or drink while watching reruns of The O.C. and cursing your problems. That’s where easy breezy omni-dieting comes in handy. Continue Reading
Until recently I never attempted to make my own bagels, since I imagined the task required fancy appliances and a lot of skill. The only paleo-friendly bagel recipes I’d found online required eggs–for which replacements such as flax or chia seeds should work in theory–but finding the perfect egg replacer in vegan recipe development can take many tries and several messes to clean. When you live with roommates, a mess in the kitchen can cause arguments and annoyed glances that just didn’t seem worth it in this case. Finally, while house-sitting one day I couldn’t resist the opportunity to utilize the empty kitchen and peaceful, quiet environment to make as many messes as it might take to develop this recipe. On the third try, after tweaking a few of the ingredients and proportions, my efforts paid off.
For this paleo vegan bagel recipe you need neither a bagel pan nor a mixer. Personally I found it easier to mix by hand, since it required significantly less clean-up afterward.
Paleo Vegan Bagels
This recipe yields 6 paleo vegan bagels. You will need:
1/2 cup blanched almond meal aka almond flour
1 Tbsp coconut flour
1/4 cup ground flax seeds or flaxseed meal
1/4 cup psyllium husk powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp sea salt
1/2 cup almond milk
1 Tbsp apple cider vinegar
1/3 cup coconut butter, softened
sesame seeds or poppy seeds, optional
1. Mix dry ingredients in a bowl, or in a food processor or mixer if you prefer.
2. Add the 1/2 cup almond milk, 1 Tbsp apple cider vinegar, and 1/3 softened coconut butter. Continue to mix until ingredients combine to form a dough.
3. Separate dough into 6 uniform pieces and form into balls
4. Create a hole in each bagel (about the diameter of a quarter)
5. Sprinkle bagels with sesame seeds or poppy seeds, optional.
6. Bake on parchment paper at 350*F for 25 to 30 minutes.
Remove from oven, and let cool for an hour before serving.
To store the bagels for later use, transfer to the refrigerator or a cool, dry space in an airtight container.
Paleo vegan bagel topping ideas, some of my favorite combinations:
Avocado with red onion and black olives Cilantro-pesto cheez with sliced heirloom tomatoes
Tahini with raw vegan sauerkraut
Or try my version of a “pizza” bagel:
Raw tahini with sun dried tomatoes, kale or arugula, and artichoke hearts; try it with Tofu ricotta for a low-fat version if you don’t have qualms about soy.
I usually make this open-faced but you can make it a bagel sandwich by spreading a thinner layer of tahini or tofu ricotta on both sides. If you spread it on both sides too thick, the flavor of the tahini tends to overpower the other ingredients. Too much tofu ricotta, on the other hand, will spill out both sides when you try to eat the sandwich.
Tahini with thinly sliced apples, sprinkled with cinnamon
Hempseed butter, lightly sprinkled with cinnamon-stevia “sugar”
Almond butter with blueberries or blackberries (you can add them whole or mash them to make a spread or a “jam”. Add stevia to taste, optional, depending on the sweetness of the berries). Spread atop the almond butter.
Enjoy these paleo vegan bagels with different variations of your favorite ingredients.
I took all photos with my phone instead of a proper camera, out of eagerness to post this recipe.
Quinoa Tortillas – Step 1
To make the quinoa tortillas you have two options: With a tortilla press, or without. I will describe each method to give you an idea of what you have or plan to buy before we start rolling (the dough).
Use a tortilla press. I’m not talking some sort of “as seen on TV” appliance i.e. “The Perfect Pancake” (someone in my family purchased one when I was a child, and now I associate all informercial purchases with smoke alarms and messes). I’m referring to the “traditional” tortilla press, made of cast-iron or cast-aluminum. I was lucky enough to find another one at Goodwill (after my college roommate took the first one, which was also from Goodwill), so chances are you might find one if you’re willing to sort through bins of kitchen appliances at your local thrift store. If you live near one of the so-called Goodwill “Bins” (where everything is dirt-cheap), you have a roughly 75% chance of finding one–if you are eager for a treasure hunt and have 5 hours to spare. On the other hand, if you are not eager or willing to search for a needle in a haystack, you can buy one on Amazon for under $10 (at the lower end, usually cast-alluminum and could be flimsy but works well) or if you have the cash I recommend the cast-iron version which is around $30 and works like a charm. Tip: Don’t buy a fancy CucinaPro 1443 Flatbread and Tortilla Maker. At $70 I think it’s overpriced and it is “Not recommended for use with non-gluten flours”. This makes no sense, since corn (masa) flour is gluten-free.
When developing recipes I brainstorm all the possible ways a dish could be prepared in absence of a certain utensil or appliance, because not everyone has a food processor on hand (or in this case, a tortilla press). These methods can take longer, but I like to think that most of my recipes can be done with just a knife, fork, spoon, bowl, an oven or stove and a little creativity. So yes, you can make quinoa tortillas without a tortilla press.
Quinoa Tortillas: Step 2
To make the dough you will need:
2 cups toasted quinoa flour
2 Tbsp nutritional yeast (because it’s rich in B vitamins and otherwise good for vegans, and it gives the tortillas the appearance of yellow corn)
3/4 cup water + a bit more if the dough is too dry
1 teaspoon coconut oil or your cooking oil of choice (I used coconut because it’s paleo and the flavor complements the quinoa)
Salt to taste. Optional
Mix dry ingredients in a bowl, adding water to form the dough. Divide into 12 equal parts and roll each one in your hand to form a ball.
Place each ball between two pieces of parchment paper. Place into a tortilla press if you have one or roll out with a rolling pin, using a small bowl with a circumference similar to that of a standard corn tortilla.
Once each ball of dough is formed into a tortilla, remove one side of the parchment paper and place that side on a skillet over medium heat. Immediately remove the parchment paper from the top side and cook until the edges turn brown and small bubbles begin to form (approximately 2 minutes). Flip and cook for another 1-2 minutes.
Repeat until you have a plate of warm and delicious quinoa tortillas. Set aside.
Now for the filling.
Tofu Rancheros – Filling for the Quinoa Tortillas
1 package extra firm tofu, drained
1 cup onion, minced
1 can fire roasted tomatoes. You will find these in tiendas (‘Mexican markets’) in the states, or in the ‘Hispanic foods’ section of corporate grocery stores i.e. Safeway, Lucky, Fred Meyer, H.E.B but if you can’t find them use ‘Mexican-style’ stewed tomatoes instead
1 1/2 cups cooked black beans or 1 can black beans
1 cup fresh corn (or frozen. You can use a can, but it tends not to work well with recipes like this).
1 4oz can fired roasted green chiles – FYI the Hatch brand and the Trader Joe’s brand (which is probably Hatch anyway, since TJ’s tends to rebrand things according to the relationships it forms with independent brands) sell these diced/chopped. If you can’t find them diced or chopped in a can, buy them whole and chop/dice post-purchase. Or, if you have the skills to do so, fire-roast raw green chiles on your own and then slice/dice them like a pro.
1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved or quartered
1 clove garlic, minced
1 tsp smoked paprika
1 tsp oregano
2 Tbsp red wine vinegar
chopped cilantro, according to taste or number of people you are serving
fresh sliced lime
1 Tbsp agave nectar
(omit the agave nectar if using Mexican-style stewed tomatoes instead of fire roasted tomatoes, as stewed tomatoes contain sugar so with the agave the result would be too sweet and overseasoned)
1. Heat the oil in a cast-iron skillet over medium heat. Add onion and garlic, smoked paprika, cumin, and oregano. Sauté 5 minutes. Stir in smoked tomatoes, tofu, and corn; simmer 5 minutes. Stir in the black beans and simmer for another 5 minutes.
Plate the tortillas (warm them if you made them in advance). Top with tofu rancheros filling and fresh tomatoes, and garnish with cilantro and fresh lime.
These Chia, Hemp & Almond Banana Pancakes are almost too good to be true. Flourless and gluten-free, this recipe is also soy free and contains no added sugar. The natural sweetness of the bananas, enhanced with stevia extract, give these Chia, Hemp & Almond Banana Pancakes the perfect amount of sweetness without the empty calories. Each serving (1 pancake) boasts 12g protein, 10g fiber, 600mg potassium–with only 5g sugar.
This recipe utilizes a “cereal” by the Nature’s Path brand ‘Qi’a Superfood’ made with only 5 ingredients (chia seeds, buckwheat groats, hemp seeds, dried cranberries, and slivered almonds–all organic, gluten-free and vegan). I was pacing around kitchen this morning trying to think of what could be used as a gluten-free, paleo flour that wouldn’t require a trip to the store. As I contemplated whether to use oats or almonds, I noticed the bag of chia-hemp-buckwheat cereal–and realized I’d stumbled upon the perfect prototype for this delicious and nutrient-dense Chia, Hemp & Almond Banana Pancakes Recipe. Continue Reading
This recipe makes an excellent “fauxtmeal”. Whether you enjoy it at home or pack it in a thermos, this grain-free oatmeal alternative is just as comforting as the real thing. Packed with potassium from the banana and Omega-3’s from the flax, this breakfast is the perfect morning fuel. Warming and slightly sweet with a hint of tartness, it is a sure-fire winner in terms of taste. Keep away the winter blues with this hearty first meal–providing your apple a’ day and cayenne pepper to boot!
Quick and easy to prepare, this fauxtmeal can be made with or without a food processor.
Apple Banana Fauxtmeal with Flax
1 ripe banana
1 organic pink lady apple (or similar variety), coarsely chopped
1/2 cup silken tofu
1/4 cup soy milk or almond milk
2 Tbsp ground flax seeds / flax meal
1 Tbsp whole flax seeds
1 Tbsp almond butter
1 tsp cinnamon
1 Tbsp raisins or chopped dates (optional)
A sprinkling of cayenne pepper to taste
In a food processor or with a fork, mash the banana with the ground flax seeds/flax meal, cinnamon, silken tofu, and soy/almond milk. Warm on the stove or microwave and top with chopped apple, flax seeds, raisins/dates and cayenne pepper.
Hint: Try it as a snack, or a healthy dessert recipe!