Golden Milk Granola

During my long wait, waiting for baby to arrive I was trying to stay sane by creating recipes for postpartum.   I wanted to create healthy easy to grab recipes that would nourish me and help heal me from the inside out.  I was thinking about anti inflammatory spices and ingredients that could be made into a delicious easy breakfast.  Breakfast was the one food item I was slacking on when I was making my food stock pile and showing Carl how to cook.  For some reason he’s just terrible at making breakfast, especially oats?!  When you have to ask someone if they’ve ever eaten before, because you just can’t believe the weird taste they’ve created you know you’ve got to come up with a breakfast alternative fast.

What’s a quicker breakfast than granola? Maybe a frozen waffle! but that was a slippery slope into unhealthy eating that I’m just not willing to take, especially during these crucial healing times!

This healthy golden milk granola is a great anti inflammatory breakfast or just a quick grab and go snack.  Its a fast way to get all the benefits of warm golden milk.  This traditional Ayurveda beverage harnesses some of the most potent healing spices, while giving you an immunity boost.

TURMERIC BENEFITS

  1. Helps with pain management.  After delivering your baby, you will be surprised of all the muscles you worked during labour.
  2. Helps manage depression.  When all those hormones come flooding out of your body, most of us gets hit with a couple of baby blues.
  3. Anti inflammatory.
  4. Helps fight against cancer
  5. Helps with digestive complaints.

GINGER BENEFITS

  1. Helps with nausea and indigestion.
  2. Helps with digestion
  3. Boost your immune system.
  4. Helps fight bacterial and fungal infections.
  5. Helps relieve pain.

CINNAMON BENEFITS

  1. High source of antioxidants.
  2. fights inflammation in the body.
  3. Protects your heart health.
  4. Fights diabetes
  5. Fights against infections and viruses.

FENNEL SEED  BENEFITS

  1. Increases breast milk production.
  2. Helps aid digestion.
  3. Relieves water retention.
  4. Relieves menstrual problems
  5. Protects against cancer.

Pair all those benefits with oats and you’ve got yourself a great anti inflammatory, lactation aiding, really yummy, super breakfast.

GOLDEN MILK GRANOLAserves 12

Ingredients

  • 4 cups rolled oats
  • 1 cup raw almonds
  • 1/2 cup sunflower seeds or pumpkin seeds
  • 1 cup raisins
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup melted coconut oil
  • 1/2 cup maple syrup or liquid sweetener of choice
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp fennel seed
  • 1 tsp ground turmeric
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • dash ground black pepper
  • 1/2 tsp ground ginger

Directions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F/180 degrees C.

In a large bowl combine the oats, nuts, seeds, salt and spices.

Stir to blend

Pour in the oil, maple syrup and vanilla. Mix well to get the oats covered well.

Spread the granola out on a baking sheet.  Bake for 20 – 30 minutes until golden.  Stir halfway through.  I lower the heat a bit when I place the granola in the oven.  I’ve had a lot of burning granola issues.  Remember to keep checking on the granola so it doesn’t burn.  When you take it out it wont be as crisp as you would want it, but it will crisp up as it cools.

Allow to completely cool.  Stir in raisins and place in an airtight container.

 

 

 

an instant of life captured for eternity

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^^ Went for a hike on the hottest day….It kind of felt like I was walking around in hell, maybe its just because I’m 9 months pregnant and heat is just a no go.

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^^ Praying on the mountain.  After the terrible year we’ve been having, praying on the mountain seems like the only logical thing to do.

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^^ The view was nice.

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^^all you need on a hot day is some home made sushi…YUM.

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^^ Testing out lactation cookies.  These ones are definitely my favourite!  Sugar free and gluten free.  It reminds me of a seed cake.

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^^ Teff flour gingerbread men.  Sooooo good.

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^^ Christmas cookies!

Hi guys! How was your weekend?  We’ve been busy! We’ve had to open our house up to people interesting in buying and man! is it a nightmare.  People constantly walking in your rental while I’m just trying to relax before the birth, can kind of start driving you insane. Not to mention that you have to keep changing your plans to accommodate the realtor, but oh, well.  I’ve been preparing a lot of freezer friendly confinement meals, as well as little work treats for Carl.  You don’t realise how exhausting a whole day of cooking is until you’re covered in flour, have weird substances all over your clothes and you just wonder if you should just burn the house down instead of trying to clean it!  But I’m nearly done with my list, just finishing up a couple of my last recipes today and we are set!

I’ve been feeling so glum and excited these last couple of days.  Excited for the baby to finally be here, baby has been the best thing to happen to us this year and just glum about how this year really has kicked us down and brought me so low.  Sometimes it feels hard to smile through it and have faith that things will work out, but I do believe things will get better soon.  Sometimes we need these hardships just so we can see what we are made of.

Tempeh Banh Mi less Lettuce wraps

I don’t know if its the weather or the fact that I’m trying to eat all the cooling food I can possibly get my hands on before confinement starts, but I’ve been on a complete easy meal kick.  Especially on the weekends! The weekends around here are just so intense that we sometimes don’t even get time to eat  lunch, with all the driving around trying to find stuff and ending up on the complete opposite side of where we live, things are always just chaotic here. We even try to be out of the house before 8 so we can get to everything before all the shops closes at 1 or 2 on a Saturday.  So eating lunch is a luxury for us, on the special days we manage to get home at a decent lunch time we are so ravenous that a quick lunch is the only thing that will do and with all my pregnancy dietary needs I’ve got going on, grabbing the wrong thing to eat can end up in heartburn for the rest of the day or a sleepless night!  Not pleasant at all.

This recipe was created on one of those days where I just wanted a quick meal that would be yum, filling and that I could just eat with my hands.  So why the weird title? Well banh mi literally means baguette in Vietnamese and seeing as there is no gluten or bread in this recipe, but it has all the wonderful banh mi flavour it just seemed like the perfect title?

If you remember a while back I was talking about how I’ve cut out soy in my diet, but kept in fermented soy products for their endless health benefits.  So why tempeh?

Tempeh is processed less than all your other soy based products, its also a great source of protein making it a great plant based source of protein, because its fermented it makes it easier to digest.  The fermentation also increase the ability to absorb your nutrients as well as keeping your gut healthy.

TEMPEH BANH MI LESS LETTUCE WRAPS 10 wraps

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Ingredients

  • 8 oz tempeh slices into pieces
  • 3 tbsp lime juice
  • 3 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 2 small carrots, grated
  • 1 small diakon, grated or chopped into matchsticks (or radishes)
  • 1/2 a small cucumber chopped into matchsticks
  • 1/4 cup liquid sweetener
  • 1 tbsp coconut oil
  • 2 tbsp tamari
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • juice and zest of a 1/2 lime
  • 1/2 tsp minced ginger
  • lettuce butter lettuce or romaine lettuce
  • coriander
  • jalapeno slices (optional
  • 1/4 cup mayo
  • 2 tbsp sriracha

Directions

In a bowl combine the apple cider vinegar, lime juice, sweetener, diakon, carrots and cucumber.  Toss and refrigerate until ready to use.

In a pan over medium high heat add the oil and tempeh.  Lightly brown the tempeh on both sides.  Add the tamari, garlic powder, juice and zest of lime and ginger, making sure it gets covered.  Remove from heat.

In a small bowl combine the mayo and sriracha, taste and adjust.

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Add the refrigerated veggies to your lettuce wraps, tempeh and a drizzle of mayo.  Garnish with coriander and jalapeno.  Serve!

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an instant of life captured for eternity

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^^ Weekends are made for gluten free, sugar free graham crackers.  These were so yum!

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^^ Our neighbourhood beach was way to bright for Carl.

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^^ The sand was so difficult to walk on, but so worth it.

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^^ Pretty mountains and such a blue ocean.  Wow.

 

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^^ Pretty flowers on our evening walk.

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^^ I love this little neighbourhood, it gives me such an old school European feel.  All the kids playing on the streets, people constantly walking around and just a wonderful sense of community, and the cutest little houses you’ve ever seen.

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^^ A bit of a commotion on the beach thanks to a dog running after this train trying to bite at it.  I’ve never actually seen a train slow down for a dog before.  The dog survived the ordeal.

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^^ Magical.

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^^ Pretty flowers on the beach.

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^^ A pretty sky right in front of our little house.

Hey friends! How was your weekend? Did you get up to anything interesting? We had a completely overwhelming weekend filled with all the house things we are still trying to get done.  I’ve painted baby A’s room, but have been confused about painting the wooden ceiling or not, I really think the roof needs to be painted white to open up and brighten up this space, but at the same time I’m wondering if the wooden ceiling will go more with the woodland theme we’ve got going on in there.   So far I’m 95% in favour of painting it white.  What do you think? Should I paint it?

We’ve had glorious cooler weather here, that we’ve just been loving!  It would have been even better if we had our couch by now.  Ordering stuff online in South Africa is such a pain, in America you’ve got drone deliveries here we have to wait an unnaturally long time for anything to arrive!  We’ve also been trying to get a telephone line installed for internet, but wow its turned into the biggest deal! We apparently have to wait 5 – 21 days.   What kind of timeline is that? It doesn’t even make sense to me! Oh well! Everything is a lesson, and right now I’m learning how to have patience.

Here’s to another week! I hope this one is just as great.

Rooibos Tea Latte

Its that time of the year again , the time when my instagram feed goes crazy with pumpkin spice everything!  All over the internet everyone seems to be going pumpkin spice nutty, even the starbucks in South Africa is hitting up the pumpkin spice season, even if its technically spring here, but hey, I’m not complaining.  Well I’m sorry to disappoint you guys, but this is not a pumpkin spice recipe!  but its an even better for you treat that’s a perfect afternoon treat or an anytime treat! With a lot of good for you qualities added to the mix thanks to the powerful Rooibos tea.  If you haven’t tried rooibos tea yet, you really should.  This caffeine free tea is native to South Africa, but can be easily bought anywhere around the world these days.

If you are still having a hard time dealing with the no pumpkin spice flavour to this recipe, I’m really sorry, but I’m not asking you to abandon the beloved pumpkin spice, I’m asking you to add some variety and who know this might become your favourite warm drink.

Rooibos Latte

I use a hand blender to get my perfectly foamy top, but if you don’t have a hand blender, throwing everything in a jar and shaking your little heart out will probably do the trick, and you will get a great workout in the process.

BENEFITS OF ROOIBOS TEA

  1. Improves skin: the tea is rich in alpha hydroxy acid and zinc.  Both of these nutrients are great for the skin and may help alleviate several skin problems including acne, pimples, sunburns, eczema and uneven skin.
  2. Anti – Inflammatory: Roobios tea is rich in polyphenols including aspalathin and nothofagin, which are two polyphenol antioxidants. These antioxidants help protect the body by fighting free radicals or unstable cells that attack healthy cells to stabilize themselves.
  3. Immune Boosting:  The anti viral benefits gives your immune system a boost.
  4. Improves Blood Circulation; Roobios tea contains chrysoeriols, which is a flavonoid with antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. This compound aids blood circulation and has been linked to reducing cholesterol.
  5. Promotes Healthy  Hair: Rooibos tea is rich in several important minerals required for hair growth. This includes zinc, calcium, copper and potassium. Regularly consuming rooibos tea may help increase hair growth and strengthen hair fibres, so hair grows healthy and strong.

(Source)

ROOIBOS TEA LATTEserves one

Rooibos tea Latte

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup boiling water
  • 1 rooibos tea bag
  • 1/2 heated non dairy milk
  • 1/4 tsp – 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • cinnamon
  • sweetener to taste

Directions

Steep the rooibos tea bag in the boiling water for 2- 5 minutes.  Remove the teabag.

Add the vanilla, milk and sweetener, have a little taste and adjust.   Pour everything in a bowl to avoid spillage, and start using your hand blender until the desired frothiness is reached.

Sprinkle with cinnamon and enjoy with a view.  (view optional, but highly recommended!

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I’ve even used my salted caramel date sauce as a sweetener for an added extra special.

Immunity Boosting Vitamin C Tonic – No Juicer required

No matter where you are on this beautiful planet right now the seasons are changing! and with the changing seasons a whole bunch of the sniffles seem to be right behind it.  I pride myself on getting sick as little as possible and being able to jump back really fast when I do get sick, I like a good one day of wondering if I’m getting sick or not and waking up feeling as good as new.  I also try not to take a lot of medication, not just because I’m pregnant at the moment, but in general, so when I really, really need to use medication my body will probably have some sort of freak out wondering what this foreign stuff is all about.  I’ve always just tried to prevent sickness, by following a good diet (with minimum gluten), exercise, practice good hygiene and drinking immunity boosting tonics.  When I feel my throat starting to hurt I make an amazingly delicious, super lickable healing paste, that takes away any throat tickles in a jiffy, but enough about the paste this blog post is about my immunity boosting tonic!

This tonic doesn’t require a juicer, but if you’re lucky enough to have a juicer, by all means use it! Filled with good for you ingredients that will give you’re body the extra fighting strength it needs to kick the sniffles right to the curb.

BENEFITS OF ORANGES

  1. Oranges fight against viral infections.
  2. Immune booster: with all that vitamin c, it gives you immune system the boost it needs.
  3. Fights inflammation
  4. Slows ageing: just an added bonus of oranges that’s got nothing to do with boosting your immunity, but everything to do with vanity!

Benefits Of Lemons

  1. Excellent source of Vitamin C; an essential nutrient that protects the body against immune system deficiencies.
  2. Balances the PH levels in your body.
  3. Flushes out toxins in your body.
  4. Its a great source of citric acid, magnesium, calcium and potassium.

Benefits of Carrots

  1. Helps boost immune system;When it comes to strengthening your immune system vitamin A plays a vital part (along with vitamin D) and carrots are filled with good old vitamin A
  2. Helps prevent infection.
  3. Cleanses the body; Vitamin A assists the body in flushing out toxins and reduces bile from forming in the liver.

Benefits of Ginger

  1. Anti Inflammatory – Ginger is high in gingerol, a substance that’s a powerful anti inflammatory and filled with antioxidants.
  2. Prevents Nausea.
  3. Reduces muscle pain and soreness.
  4. Helps fight infections.

Benefits of Turmeric

  1. Anti inflammatory.
  2. Manages Pain.
  3. Boost Immunity.

Now with all those benefits don’t you just want to take a sip of this tonic!  I grated my carrot before hand as I don’t have a great blender at the moment, and used a little strainer over my glass to strain out the pulp and control how much pulp I wanted in my tonic.  Its all up to you, like I said if you have a juicer feel free to use it you will probably have a way more juicy tonic than mine, if using a juicer I would suggest to go easier on the water.

IMMUNITY BOOSTING VITAMIN C TONICserves 2 small glasses or 1 and a bit bigger glasses

Immunity Boosting Tonic no juicer required

Ingredients

  • 1 large orange, peeled
  • 1/2 large lemon, washed well I blend it with the rind.
  • 1 large carrot, washed and grated
  • 1 inch ginger, peeled
  • 1 tsp ground turmeric
  • 1 cup of water or add a little more if using the strainer method.

Directions

Add all the ingredients to a blender a blend until smooth.

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Place a strainer over your glass or a bowl and pour the liquid in.  I used a spoon to push through as much of the liquid as I could.  Give it a stir, add ice and enjoy.  Feel free to sweeten it with honey or maple syrup if you want, I drank it just as is.

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Healthy Salted Date Caramel Sauce

I’ve been loving my healthy treats lately, its been a strange thing for me, because I don’t really like sweet treats.  The things you will like during pregnancy might startle you and make you worry about who you’re turning into!

I’m usually a rather nice person, and I watch Carl eat something in one sitting, but lately I’ve felt a lot of resentment towards the fact that he can’t control himself and eats most of my special really dark chocolate, in such a short period, where I try to make every block last and practice self control.    I actually went to bed angry thinking about the fact that I didn’t have a little block of chocolate, the irrational anger is real guys.  We think pregnancy is tough on us, but what about our poor husbands, or partners just getting caught in the crossfire of our irrational emotions or maybe they should just leave our special treats alone!

This salted caramel date sauce is amazing! I’ve been using it in everything! Seeing as I’m trying to eat 6 dates a day for a better labour, and my blender doesn’t want to properly blend in the dates in any of my smoothies;  This sauce is my special way of sneaking in delicious dates into my diet, that feels so decadent, but is so much better for you than normal caramel sauce.  I’ve been using it in my overnight oats, overnight coconut porridge, for my frozen salted date banana bites, as a dip for fruit, swirled into banana nice cream and as an extra special something to my rooibos latte.  The possibilities are endless!

HEALTHY SALTED DATE CARAMEL SAUCE

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Ingredients

  • 1 cup dates, if they don’t seem soft, or you have a bad blender soak them in warm water for 15 minutes and discard water.
  • 1/4 tsp ground Himalayan pink salt
  • 1/4 or more non dairy milk.  If you like it a little runnier add more milk
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/4 tsp caramel extract – optional, but adds extra caramely goodness.

Directions

healthy salted caramel

Blend everything together in a blender until its smooth and has reached your desired consistency.   Serve with apple slices, or refrigerate

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Moroccan Red Lentil, Kale and Sweet Potato Soup

While everyone else is gearing up for the colder weather, I’m sitting here soaking up the last bit of Winter on these cloudy Cape Town days.   When the weather gets colder we all tend to gravitate to comforting, warming meals that make us feel all cosy and toasty.  This soup brings all the comfort, but with so much flavour, the delightful tastes of Morocco dancing on your tongue will bring all the comfort and soon become one of your favourite recipes.

Filled with good for you ingredients like kale, sweet potato, carrot and the ever so trusty red lentil, this is an affordable meal that’s healthy and easy on your pocket, yet will make you feel like you put way more effort into meal time.

MOROCCAN RED LENTIL, KALE AND SWEET POTATO SOUPserves 4

Moroccan Lentil, sweet potato and kale soup

Ingredients

  • 1 tbsp coconut oil, any other oil
  • 1 shallot,  finely diced
  • 1 large clove garlic, minced
  • 1 medium carrot, peeled and chopped
  • 1 medium sweet potato, peeled and chopped
  • 2-3 cups chopped kale
  • 1 can crushed tomatoes
  • 2 tbsp tomato paste
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/2 tsp chilli flakes
  • 1/2 tsp ground turmeric
  • 1/2 tsp Paprika
  • 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 1/2 cups split red lentils
  • 2 quarts low sodium vegetable stock
  • lemon wedges, coconut yogurt, fresh coriander and parsley

Directions

In a large pot over medium high heat, add oil.

Add the shallot and carrot, and saute until translucent and starting to brown.  Add the garlic,cumin, ginger, turmeric, paprika, chilli flakes and cinnamon.  Cook until fragrant about 1 minute, while stirring.  Add the crushed tomatoes, tomato paste, lentils, sweet potato, kale and vegetable stock.  Bring to a boil, reduce heat and let simmer uncovered for 20 – 25 minutes, until the lentils and vegetables are tender.  Taste and season with salt and pepper to taste.

Amazing lentil soup

Serve the soup with a dollop of yogurt, a drizzle of lemon, garnish with fresh coriander and parsley.  Serve with a crusty bread, personally I think the soup is filling enough on its own to be served without bread, so I didn’t bother.  Enjoy.

an instant of life captured for eternity

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^^ Surprise beach days.  Clear blue water in between the mountain.

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^^ We weren’t dressed for the beach at all!

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^^Trying to flatten my wind swept hair.

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^^ Morning hikes.  No time for make up when you need to get hiking.

 

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^^ Pretty little flowers on our hike.

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^^ We are moving at the end of this month, but that didn’t stop me from getting this sweet little bassinet.

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^^ Lots of surfers….Not a lot of waves…

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^^ I kept running around trying to find a perfect sized rock, Carl kept screaming after me to stop running.

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^^ Flowers on the beach.

Hello friends! How was your weekend? We had a very active weekend of hiking, ocean time and getting some stuff for our baby.  We’ve been trying to get a hike in every weekend and seeing how far we can go before my insane need to pee starts to kick in.  Every weekend we get a little further and every return I tend to almost run home to the comfort of the loo.  On Sunday we had big plans to go to this specific picnic area, but after getting lost, not being able to find a loo ANYWHERE, we somehow ended up driving along the ocean on the most magical ocean drive ever!  Sometimes the things that aren’t planned work out even better.  All the wild flowers all around the Cape has made even the most mundane tasks amazing.