healthy

Super pancakes (for one or more)

"Super" because they're packed with nutritious filling whole grains and
are awesome tasting. Have a couple of these and a fruit smoothie and
you're set for the day!

Recipe: Super Pancakes

Black Gold!

lack Gold
Super-rich fudgey mineral-dense Black Gold.

I've been craving rich mineral-dense food lately, so I concocted this satisfying and healthy confection. Quick and easy to make and no baking required. Minerals in this fudgey delight include: iron, copper, magnesium, calcium, zinc - not sure if there's actually gold in these though!

Recipe:
Black Gold

Get rich!

Hi there pumpkin pie!

A sugar pumpkin - perfect for pies! image from Cook's Thesaurus

I absolutely love pumpkin pie. There are thousands of pumpkin pie recipes on the web - but most are loaded with superfluous fat and sugar. Winter squash is a magical thing, and has its own lovely richness. Here are some tips on how to make a classic recipe healthier, without compromising flavour and texture of course!

Marvelous Monkey Muffins

Make some Marvelous Monkey Muffins - mmm!

Packed with sweet ripe bananas, flax seeds, oats, toasted pepitas...
these super muffins are good for you and your monkey!

Here's the recipe:
Marvelous Monkey Muffins

Ooo-oo-oo ee-EE!

Super Spirulina...

Spirulina in the morning: a rich green spirulina smoothie for breakfast - mmm!

My cousin emails me this question: "What can you tell me about spirulina powder?"

Spirulina is a type of blue-green algae (actually a microalgae!) which is known to be very nutritious: packed with protein, essential fatty acids, minerals (including iron), vitamins (including B vitamins), healthy pigments (including carotenoids and chlorophyll)... Though spirulina does have all these healthy nutrients, you'd have to eat a very large quantity to get a good dose. (Here's an in-depth review of spirulina.)

According to those who sell it, spirulina also is said to be a tonic helpful in dealing with all sorts of ailments: viruses, cancer, high cholesterol, anemia, arthritis, poor immune system, malnutrition, diabetes, weight-loss...

Chewy, sweet, and nutty

Chewy Oat Nut Cookies

My friend Meeshka sent me a recipe for some lovely little cookies.

These are pretty special: chewy, sweet, nutty, and delicious. They are also free of dairy, eggs, wheat, and refined sugar. They can also be gluten-free, if you use oats that have not been contaminated with wheat. Yes, these cookies are packed with flavour and nutrients - one could even call them healthy. Eater beware: consume in moderation - these cookies are rich!

Recipe: Tahini Oatmeal Walnut Cookies

Added bonus: quick and easy to make!

Say Kimchi!

Kimchee in Korean

I can't get enough kimchi. I'll eat it as-is, like a pickle, whenever I have a savoury kimchi craving. I'll eat a pile of it with a can of tuna for lunch. I'll eat it with brown rice and adzuki or mung beans for dinner. I hear it's great on barbecued hamburgers too...

For those of you not familiar with kimchi, it's a traditional Korean side dish (as well as a condiment and a key ingredient in many dishes) typically made with fermented cabbage, chili pepper, garlic, onion, and various other vegetables. It has a wonderful spicy, sour, savory taste. There are many variations, for example, some kimchi is based on cucumber or radish. It often has seafood paste in it like shrimp, fish, or oyster - though I've tried fantastic vegan versions as well. Apparently, most Koreans love their kimchi and eat it everyday. There is even a Kimchi Museum in Seoul.

I picked up two kinds of kimchi (cabbage and radish) from a Korean-owned fruit stand in my old neighbourhood. It's the good stuff: home-made and packed with fresh ginger and leeks - so good that my partner is now a kimchi convert.

Whole-cabbage (Tongbaechu) and diced-radish (Kaktugi) kimchi

A Versatile Classic ~ Healthy Banana Bread

banana bread touch test

What classic baked good is easy to make, delicious, nutritious, yeast-free, portable, and can use up all sorts of bits floating in your pantry? You guessed it ;-)

I often make variations of these basic, easy, healthy banana bread recipes:
Healthy Banana Bread and Easy Gluten-free Banana Bread

Wonderfully versatile, banana bread can incorporate just about any nut (pecans, walnuts, almonds, pistachios, hazelnuts...), seed (pepitas, sesame seeds, sunflower seeds, poppy-seeds...), fruit (figs, dates, apricots, berries...), flour (wheat, rice, spelt, barley...), sweetener (honey, agave syrup, maple syrup, fruit concentrate, marmalade/preserves, sucanat, stevia...), spice (cinnamon, nutmeg...) chocolate (chips, baker's chocolate, bars - dark, medium, or white), carob chips, extracts (vanilla, almond, lemon, orange...), or booze (rum, Kahlua, Grand Marnier...).

Tips for delicious and healthy banana bread variations:

nuts: use 1/2-1c. nut combos like pecans and walnuts are great. chop up large nuts
seeds (use up to): 1Tbsp poppyseeds, 2Tbsp sesame seeds, 1/4c sunflour seeds or pepitas
booze: 1-2Tbsp
extracts: 1/4tsp lemon/orange, 1/2tsp almond, up to 1Tbsp vanilla
sugar: 1/2c of sweetener/sugar (brown sugar, sucanat, fruit juice concentrate, honey, maple syrup, preserves...) is enough to make a sweet tasty bread. (I use as little as 1/4c.) try sweetener combinations like: 1/4c honey, 2Tbsp orange marmalade, 2Tbsp brown sugar
chocolate: 1/2c is great. you can, of course, use more or less (1/4c-1c)
mixing tip: coat chocolate and dried fruit with flower before mixing in to prevent it from sticking to the pan

*Bonus: a great way to use up all those over-ripe bananas!

UPDATE: Some new variations:

Chocolate Fractal Banana Bread: Gorgeous, delicious and marbled with chocolate.
Super-Healthy Banana Bread: Multi-grain, whole-grain and wonderfully spiced: gluten-free, sugar-free, dairy-free and flavorful with no unnecessary sugar or fat.