Wednesday, February 26, 2014

What I Ate Wednesday #2

What I ate Wednesday again! I've missed two in between, seems like the middle of the week sneaks up on me all the time. Thanks to for hosting!

As always with us, breakfast is a big deal. We're back on our "cold oats" kick. Usually we eat this in the summer, but the little boys and I have been missing it.
Snack, a delicious Pink Lady apple with this amazing chocolate coconut peanut butter I picked up in Seattle. It's a small company and I haven't found it in Canada. I also loved their honey pretzel peanut butter. Next trip south I'll pick up much more! In the meantime, I'll try my hand at making some.

I had a little extra time for lunch, so had a grilled "cheese" sandwhich on Silver Hills sprouted grain bread. For the dairy free cheese, I mix vital wheat gluten and nutritional yeast with garlic and onion powder and enough water to make a thick paste. I love it, my kids love it...not sure what the world would think! I've never written amounts down, but might have to try. I also had leftover kale salad and a pickle, of course.

Supper as usual, went too quickly! It's from the book "Isa Does It" by Isa Chandra Maskowitz. Kale lentil salad with butternut squash. It's so delicious, and this cookbook has recipes for exactly what I want to eat all the time!

Sunday, February 23, 2014

A week's menu

Life is getting busy! My kids are getting older and more involved in activities. There's often a birthday party thrown into the mix. My business is getting a lot busier too. But I'm a dietitian, food is my passion and a priority! So I always take time to plan for the week ahead so we aren't left wondering what to eat.

I'm always out Monday nights, so the boys have dragon bowls or make sushi. I usually eat a bigger lunch Mondays and pack a snack I can squeeze in between clients.

The rest of the week is this:

Tuesday: Queso Blanco Bowl from "Isa Does It" by Isa Chandra Maskowitz. This looks great- quinoa, beans. a creamy cashew sauce, and crispy kale.

Wednesday: Panko crusted tempeh and mache (corn) salad. So happy it's back at our local food delivery! If you haven't tried this green, you must! It's so delicious and sweet and it's a cold weather green so usually the first and last to appear during greens season.

Thursday: Walnut Pecan Balls on Mache Salad (www.plantpowered

Friday: Leftovers and a HUGE bowl of popcorn with hemp seeds and nutritional yeast

Saturday: Bistro Beet Burgers (again, from Isa's book) and oven baked Curry Garlic Fries, and coleslaw.

We always have salad, cabbage or kale, so with leftovers from a meal and a great homemade dressing, it's easy to pull together lunch. And I get up at 6:00 everyday to make time for our  breakfast.


Friday, February 21, 2014

My favourite breakfast

We love breakfast. Weekends are usually some kind of pancake, maybe a waffle. Friday night, the question is always, "What kind of pancake tomorrow?" And Greg will toss out an amazing flavour combo, and I'll make it happen. Lemon, coconut, blueberry, or pumpkin seed and bran, or dark chocolate cherry...During the week, breakfast is usually some sort of grain bowl with different flavours. Like our apple pie millet, pumpkin pie baked oats, chocolate chip coconut baked oats. Some inspired by others, like, some our own invention. (Writing this already makes me excited for tomorrow morning!)

One of the week day favourites is cold oats. 

About five years ago, when I was pregnant with our second, my parents took us on a cruise. One of the best breakfast buffet features was an oatmeal bar with nuts, seeds, fresh and dried fruit and Bircher Muesli. My entire family loved it, and we'd load up a bowl with the Bircher, then pile on seeds, nuts, and fruit. We'd spend the rest of the morning wondering why we felt so awful. My brother called it seed belly, but researching Bircher Muesli on my return taught me it's made with cream and sugar.  Considering seeds never bother me and I eat them all the time, I'm guessing the richness of our "healthy" breakfast was the issue.

So, it inspired me to create what we lovingly call Cold Oats. We don't make it the night before like typical overnight oats, I just mix it up in the morning because we like the chewiness.

For 2 1/2 hearty servings (my 4-year old still doesn't eat much at breakfast)

1 cup rolled oats
1/2 cup milk of choice
1/2 cup applesauce, apple juice, orange juice or puréed pumpkin
1tsp vanilla
1tsp agave or maple syrup or honey
Cinnamon to taste
Options, vary at will
2 Tbsp pumpkin seeds
2 Tbsp raisins
2 Tbsp hemp seeds
1-2 Tbsp chia
2 Tbsp chopped pecans
Chocolate chips  to taste

Add more milk as desired, and serve!

I actually pull out a scoop before the options, because my four year old prefers it a little lighter. Just raisins, chocolate chips, and a tiny bit of hemp seed.

Tuesday, February 11, 2014


I had the chance to attend a Kombucha making class mid January. For those who don't know, Kombucha is fermented tea. The class was just as I was recovering from our sick week, and likely a little healthy bacteria was exactly what I needed.

The class was put on by the lovely Raina Lutz, RHN, www.LutzNutrition.caShe opened the class by putting to rest the claims that Kombucha can cure everything, winning over RD Kelly (the other Kelly just wanted the tea and all its benefits, real or hoped). The great thing about Kombucha is that it is fermented, which means healthy probiotics proven to aid in digestion and enhance the immune system, among other things. More info on some of the research on kombucha can be found here and here. There is very little actual research on the tea.
After an hour of talking us through the process of brewing our own kombucha, Raina sent us home with our own SCOBY (Symbiotic Culture of Bacteria and Yeast- it's the crazy looking thing in the picture of the jar of tea at the bottom of this post). I needed to get geared up, so promptly ordered a glass jug on Amazon, which arrived about 5 days later. Now it was time to get brewing!

My first batch was made with organic green tea and organic sugar. I let it ferment in a quiet closet for 9 days. At that point, the flavour was great, so I bottled it and left on the counter for 24 hours. I didn’t add any flavourings. It never fizzed up, but Raina was quick to reply to my emails and let me know that everything was probably ok. I added apple juice to one of the bottles and left it on the kitchen counter for another 24 hours, and put the rest in the fridge.

We are loving the tea- even my four year old ! It makes a great alternative to other sweetened drinks, and to their breakfast juice. I love that we’re getting a dose of healthy probiotics. My second batch, with black tea, is brewing right now, and I'm going to experiment with flavouring it this time. I also hope I can get the fizz this round.

Sunday, February 2, 2014

Nut and seed clusters

I haven't posted a recipe in ages. Tonight, I was prepping for Monday morning, and I realized that one of the snacks I regularly make is a recipe! It's so quick and easy, I hadn't thought of sharing.

These clusters of nuts and seeds are a little sweet, a little salty, and there are lots of ways you can shake up the recipe. We've used them as a snack, or sprinkled on oatmeal.

2 cups any seeds or chopped nuts (I used hemp hearts, pumpkin seeds, pecans and almonds)
1 Tbsp brown sugar
1 Tbsp honey or agave
Dash salt
Dash cinnamon 
Splash of vanilla
Splash of water

Heat a pan on the stove. Add nuts and toast a little. Remove from heat, add everything else. Return to heat for a couple of minutes. Then transfer to a plate to cool. As it cools, break it into chunks the size you like.

I've also made these with cocoa powder or ginger. You could also do all seeds so it can go to school. A proper serving would be about 1/4 cup, but good luck with that.