Jumbo Vegan Pecan Pumpkin Muffins

IMG_0502To be honest, I actually found a variation of this recipe on the Taste of Home website. At a first glance, I thought this is not the recipe for me with its bleached white flour, white sugar, canola oil, buttermilk, etc…reminding me of some of my grandmother’s recipes (which is beautiful and nostalgic, but not how I want to nourish my body temple.)

And in that moment, I remembered how much I love taking any recipe and transforming it into a healthier version by substituting the types of flours, oils, sugars and for this muffin, even using flax “eggs” for a vegan version. I feel so grateful to have this knowledge and am looking forward to sharing this recipe with you!

Here are 2 tips for you: #1 – you can use spelt flour the same way you’d using any other kind of flour in a recipe without any need to change the measurements. #2- You can use less oil in a baking recipe by substituting half the oil for apple sauce (and it even makes the recipes more moist!)

This muffin is really tasty! …and it is jumbo! If you’re not much of a breakfast person, this may feel a bit heavy for you first thing in the morning so enjoy it mid morning with a tea, or in the afternoon.

 

Makes 16 delicious, moist, abundant muffins (with the most perfect crunchy topping!)

Ingredients

4 Flax Eggs (4 Tbsp of organic ground flax mixed with 8 Tbsp warm water)

5 cups Organic Light Spelt Flour

1 Cup Organic Raw Sugar

1 Tbsp of Pumpkin Pie Spice (or mix mostly cinnamon with ground ginger and a pinch of all spice and nutmeg.)

1.5 tsp Baking Powder

1.5 tsp Baking Soda

1/2 tsp Sea Salt

1/2 Cup Local Maple Syrup

2 cups Organic Canned Pumpkin Puree

1/4 cup Organic Almond Milk, or any non-dairy substitute that you have on hand

1/4 cup Organic Coconut Oil, melted

1/4 cup Unsweetened Apple Sauce

2 tsp Vanilla Extract

1 cup Chopped Pecans

Topping

1/2 cup Organic Coconut Sugar

2/3 cup Pecans

1/4 cup Organic Rolled Oats

2 Tbsp Organic Virgin Coconut oil, cold or room temperature

Directions

  1. In a small bowl, combine ground flax and warm water, stir and set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, combine flour, raw sugar, spices, baking powder and soda and salt.
  3. In another bowl, combine maple syrup, pumpkin, almond milk, coconut oil, apple sauce, vanilla. Mix in flax eggs.
  4. Add the wet ingredients into the dry, stirring until almost mixed and then fold in the pecans.
  5. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
  6. In a food processor, add all the ingredients for the topping and pulse for 5 seconds. Otherwise, finely chop the pecans and mix in a bowl with remaining ingredients.
  7. Prepare muffins tins by greasing with additional coconut oil.
  8. Scoops muffin batter into the tins (I use the silicone ones!), filling half way, and top each one evenly with the crunchy-sweet oat topping. Warning… these do get a little messy 🙂 
  9. Bake for 30 minutes.
  10. Let cool on a drying rack for 5 minutes before removing from muffin cups.

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Zucchini Chocolate Chip Cookies {vegan}

These are simply the best! They started as a way to use up the extra garden abidance of zucchini this season, but now they have turned into a regular favourite! Essentially they are like a healthy and homemade granola bar (which means you can have it any time of day!)

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yield: 2 1/2 DOZEN COOKIES

cook time: 10-12 MINUTES

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 cup organic light spelt flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/4 cup organic virgin coconut oil, melted
  • 1/2 cup dark brown sugar or coconut sugar
  • 1/4 cup organic raw cane sugar
  • 1 flax egg ( 1 tbsp ground flaxseed + 2 tbsp water, mix and let sit for 5 minutes)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup shredded zucchini (and drained)
  • 2 cups rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened coconut flakes
  • 3/4 cup semisweet vegan chocolate chips
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
  2. In a small bowl, prepare flax egg.
  3. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.
  4. In a large mixing bowl, combine coconut oil and sugars, mix until smooth. Add flax egg and vanilla extract. Next, add the shredded zucchini. Be sure to squeeze out any extra liquid with your hands. Mix until combined.
  5. Slowly add flour mixture until just combined. Stir in oats, coconut, and chocolate chips.
  6. Drop cookie dough by heaping tablespoonfuls, 2 inches apart, onto prepared baking sheet. Bake for 10-12 minutes or until cookies are slightly golden around the edges and set. Remove cookies from pans; cool completely on wire racks.

Olive & Fig Tapenade

Olive & Fig Tapenade

Try this recipe for your next Italian inspired dinner! Make some extra and bring it in your lunch. Tastes great with your favourite crackers, pita bread, veggie sticks, or as in the photo, with homemade sunflower seed paleo bread!

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Ingredients

1.5 cups pitted kalamata olives

6 large dried figs, coarsely chopped

2 tablespoons capers, rinsed

2 small garlic cloves, crushed

1/4 cup packed mint leaves

1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil

Freshly ground pepper

Method

In a food processor, pulse the olives, figs, capers, garlic, mint, and olive oil until the tapenade is thick and somewhat chunky. Season with salt and pepper. Transfer the tapenade to a bowl, cover and refrigerate until chilled.

Makes 1.5 cups

Chocolate Zucchini Brownies with Peanut Butter Frosting 

Chocolate Zucchini Brownies with Peanut Butter Frosting

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Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup pitted and chopped dates
  • 3/4 cup hot water
  • 1/3 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup organic light spelt flour, or buckwheat for gluten free option.
  • 1/3 cup raw cocao powder
  • 1/4 cup organic coconut sugar
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon Himalayan or sea salt
  • 1 cup finely shredded zucchini, by hand or with a food processor 
  • 1/4 cup walnut pieces or pumpkin seeds for a nut free version

FROSTING:

  • 1/2 cup vegan chocolate chips
  • 3 tablespoons almond milk
  • 1 tablespoon natural peanut butter

Instructions

  1. Place the dates in a small bowl and pour the hot water over them. Allow to soak until the dates are soft, about 1/2 hour.
  2. Preheat oven to 350 F. Prepare an 8×8-inch baking dish by lining it with parchment paper or oiling lightly.
  3. Put the dates and the soaking water in the blender with the applesauce and vanilla. Blend at high speed until completely smooth. Set aside.
  4. Combine the flour, cacao, coconut sugar, baking soda, and salt. Stir in the zucchini and walnuts, if using. Add the blended date mixture and stir until all the flour is moistened. The batter will be thick. Spoon it into the prepared pan and smooth over the top.
  5. Bake for about 25 minutes, or until brownies are no longer liquid in the middle and edges are firm but not drying out. Allow to cool.
  6. You can eat them plain or add the Chocolate-Peanut Butter Frosting:
  7. Combine the chocolate chips, non-dairy milk, and nut butter in a double boiler, cook and stir until chocolate is melted and mixture is smooth. Frost brownies immediately. Allow to stand about 20 minutes to firm up. Enjoy!

Inspired by Fat Free Vegan.com

Holistic Lacey’s Pantry

Holistic Lacey’s Pantry

When transitioning to a plant based diet, focus on adding as many organic, seasonal, local and fresh fruits and vegetable to your diet. I recommend adding salads or raw food to every meal (according to constitution), as well enjoying snacks such as fruit, veggies, superfoods & green smoothies. Some of my favourite nutrient powerhouses include sweet potatoes, kale, spinach, avocados, almonds, brazil nuts, berries, lemons, broccoli.

Whole grains/ flours

Quinoa

Millet

Brown Rice

Spelt flour

Light bucwkwheat

Sprouted grain bread/ rye bread

Soba noodles

Rolled oats

Barley

Nuts & seeds

Flax seeds

Chia seeds

Hemp seeds

Pumpkin seeds

Sunflower seeds

Walnuts

Pecans

Almonds (almond butter)

Brazil nuts

Sesame seeds (+tahini)

Beans, legumes, & more veggie protein

Chickpeas

Black beans

Kidney beans

Edamame

Mung beans (sprouting)

Red lentils

Green lentils

Organic Tofu

Organic Tempeh

Organic Free-Range Eggs

Sweeteners

Maple syrup

Honey (raw/local)

Molasses

Dried fruits

Medjool dates

Organic un-sulphured apricots

Cranberries

Raisins

Oils & vinegars

Olive oil

Coconut oil

MCT oil

Sesame oil

Grapeseed oil

Apple cider vinegar

Balsamic vinegar

Spices & fresh herbs

All spices &herbs especially cinnamon, sea salt,  turmeric, fresh ginger root, garlic, parsley, cilantro

Condiments & more

Grainy mustard

Dijon Mustard

Tamari (gluten free)

Kalamata olives

Superfoods

Goji berries

Sea veggies

Cacao (raw)

Maca

Ashwagandha

Bee Pollen

Chaga/ Reishi Mushroom tea

Shortcuts

unsweetened Apple sauce

Vegetable broth

Almond milk (Earth’s own)

Hummus

Salsa

Sea veggies

Kombu

Nori

Dulse

Spirulina

Chlorella

Dairy (refrigerate)

Organic Butter

Organic plain yogurt

Organic Kefir

Goat cheese

Sheep feta

Other:

Fermented food (refrigerate) Kombucha

Saurkraut

Kimchi

Loose Leaf Tea

Supplements:

Probiotics

Plant based enzymes by Organika

Aloe Verga Juice by Lily of the Dessert

Greens Powder 

Chocolate, Meditation & Love Aphrodisiacs

Have you Heard of the “Bliss” Molecule? 

Chocolate, Meditation and Love Aphrodisiacs

An article by Lacey Budge written for The Adult Chair

It’s time to up your chocolate consumption. Say goodbye to milk chocolate and hello to pure raw chocolate in the form of superfood drinks {elixirs}, smoothies and sweet desserts {bliss balls}.

Anandamide, the bliss molecule, is found in raw cacao (a.k.a chocolate) and is pronounced as ca-cow not coco. This natural pleasure boosting compound is released when we are feeling good and induces the same euphoric feeling as a runner’s “high” – minus the sprints and squats!

If you are looking for a boost, (mood or libido!), consider adding this superfood to your diet. Cacao is high in the amino acid tryptophan, which is key for the production of dopamine and serotonin – a natural mood stabiliser.

It even releases natural endorphins and compounds like theobromine and phenylethylamine (PEA) which gives us the natural “high” we feel when we are in love.

Cacao, known as the Food of the Gods by the Aztecs, comes from a plant native to Costa Rica (where it was once used as local currency). It is the highest antioxidant food in the world, along with chaga, maca, acai and goji berries.

The nutritional profile for this favourite treat is extraordinary. It is the highest source of the mineral magnesium – important for heart health and extremely beneficial for women, especially during their moon cycle. The pure of chocolate is also very high in iron, potassium, calcium, B vitamins and copper; promotes longevity and even weight loss.

Choose cacao in its pure raw form (vs baking cocoa), as many of these health compounds can be damaged by heating and over processing. If you can’t get your hands on a ethically sourced 100% chocolate bar, I recommend raw cacao powder. Other options include cacao beans and nibs.

Are you already excited about bringing more chocolate back into your life? Now, consider combining it with certain foods to increase its aphrodisiac effects.

We begin with Maca, also known as Peruvian Ginseng. This superfood root veggie, grown in the high altitudes of the Andes, helps you adapt to stress and promotes long lasting energy…especially during love making!

Next, we do like the Mayans! In traditional Mayan “heart opening” cacao ceremonies, warming spices like cinnamon, ginger, clove, cardamom and cayenne have always been utilised. These spices don’t only warm up your digestion, but can spice up your love life too.

Fun fact: hot peppers open the blood vessels and allow you to absorb the benefits of the cacao and maca even more. Vanilla bean relaxes the body, which is important for all aspects of life, and is traditionally grown along side the cacao plant.

Start using this powder in your chocolate love potions, morning smoothies, kids hot chocolates and any dessert that calls for cocoa.

You can join Holistic Lacey for a heart opening cacao ceremony in Costa Rica, during her 9 Day Holistic Lifestyle Retreat, this April at Farm of Life.

One last thing… when it comes to aphrodisiacs, we cannot forget about the importance of meditation. This mindfulness practice quiets the mind and increases an overall sense of well being, relaxation and connectedness. When we become more present in our life, we become a more present lover. Through a regular meditation practice, we begin to feel content and whole in the present moment, and no longer look to our partner to “complete” us.

By Holistic Lacey | Nourishing body, mind and Spirit

Recipe : The Aphrodisiac Hot Chocolate

Serves 2 

2.5 cups Chai Tea, hot and brewed

4 heaping tbsp of raw cacao powder

1 heaping tbsp organic coconut oil

1 tsp maca

1 tsp cinnamon

1 tbsp maple syrup, raw honey or 3 Medjool dates

1/2 tsp vanilla extract or powder

a small piece of ginger root

a pinch of cayenne

2 tbsp hemp seeds

Blend until well combined and super deliciously frothy! If you like, top with  additional superfoods like cacao nibs, bee pollen, hemp seeds or goji berries,  Enjoy at your own risk. Warning: may induce a state of euphoria and bliss! 

For more chocolate recipes, try  her Raw Decadent Chocolate Truffles, Healthy Chocolate “Mylk,” Chaga-Cacao Superfood Tea, and an All in One Chocolate Tonic she created specifically for women to boost mood, increase immunity and balance hormones.

 

Lacey Budge, @HolisticLacey, is dedicated to guiding individuals to live a holistic life, and to rediscovering that which already lies within. Her dharma {life purpose} is service. She believes that the best way to truly serve and make a difference is to inspire, educate, and live by example. With her clients, she offers tools such as whole food nutrition, yoga, meditation, self inquiry and connection to nature to reunite them with their True Self. Lacey, Registered Holistic Nutritionist, works in Canada and internationally as a Retreat Centre Coordinator and Facilitator, Vegan Chef, Yoga and Ecstatic Dance Teacher, Public Speaker and is currently so inspired by bringing women together into sacred sisterhood through her Emergence program.

Vegan Chocolate Pudding for Dinner! {made with sweet potato and black beans} {free of refined sugars}

…So this started off as making sweet potato brownies, but didn’t end that way!  After trying what was supposed to be my batter, I turned off the oven and decided this was absolutely amazing as it was… no need to turn it into anything else. So here you are, a healthy, nutrient dense, chocolate pudding that is filled with plant based protein, fibre, and antioxidants, magnesium rich raw cacao, and healthy fats like almond butter and coconut oil. This recipe is free of refined sugars and only sweetened with local maple syrup. Enjoy!

This recipe makes about 4 portions, depending on who is making it and doing the “quality control” 🙂 🙂 🙂

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Ingredients

1 medium sized sweet potato, peeled and cubed.

1/2 cup black beans, cooked or canned (I like Eden Organics)

3 T organic coconut oil, melted

1/4 cup raw cacao powder

1/4 maple syrup (you could also use Medjool dates, but would have to add more water)

1 Tbsp almond butter, smooth or crunchy

1-2 Tbsp filtered water

Pinch of Himalayan sea salt

Dash of vanilla extract or a pinch of powder

Your favourite berries and superfoods for topping

1/2 cup almonds, ground, or nuts of choice (optional…add for crunch!)

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Method

This recipe can be prepared in a blender or food processor. For a Vitamix use the damper stick, for any other blender (and perhaps the food pro), continue to stop the blender and scrape down the sides with a baking spatula, as you add more ingredients.

  1. Steam cubed sweet potatoes until soft, about 20 minutes. I like to use a bamboo steamer. In the mean time, take out the other ingredients, melt the coconut oil, grind the almonds, etc.
  2. To your blender or food processor, add sweet potatoes, black beans and coconut oil. Pulse/blend until they start to combine well.
  3. Add cacao powder, maple syrup, almond butter, salt, vanilla and 1 tbsp of water. Blend well.
  4. Add additional water until desired consistency is reached.
  5. Remove the pudding from your blender, place in a bowl and stir in the ground almonds or nuts of choice.
  6. When ready to serve, you can top the pudding with fresh berries, additional almonds or any of your superfood toppings like bee pollen, chia, cacao nibs, spirulina or goji berries.

Looking for something lighter? Replace the sweet potato and black beans with 1/2 a papaya.

All in One: Women’s SUPERfood Elixir RECIPE

Hail to being a woman… to fully feeling, embracing and honouring our emotions… ..to celebrating our ecstatic highs and witnessing our lows. Let’s set a collective intuition to thrive, rejoice and feel optimal and balanced in our body, mind, heart and spirit.

This drink is inspired by:

❤ the gratitude I feel for being a woman

❤ my love for superfoods (especially chocolate) and super health!

❤ my intention to live with a wide open heart

❤ my yearning feel fully alive and to thrive

❤  the inherent place of joy, stillness, love and freedom that dwells within my heart.

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It is so easy to collect a cupboard full of superfoods and not know how or why to use them, so I decided to make one drink withe everything in…that actually tastes amazing!

This drink has everything in one heart opening-balancing-nourishing-calming,-immunity strengthening- revitalising- detoxifying – chocolate bursting- delicious ELIXIR (a.k.a tonic, superfood tea, glorified hot chocolate, hot beverage).

Ingredients

2 cups brewed tea of choice. I like to use Tulsi (holy basil) Chai, lemongrass-ginger, chaga or gynostemma tea for the medicinal properties.

2 heaping Tbsp Raw Cacao Powder

1/4 tsp (up  to 1t) Ashwagandha

1/2 tsp (up to 1t) Maca powder

1/4 tsp (up to 1/2 t) Spirulina

1 ml reishi tincture (or your favourite mushroom tinctures/powders)

1 Tbsp Coconut or MCT oil

1 Tbsp Hemp seeds

2-3 tsp Maple syrup or local honey

1/2 tsp Cinnamon

Pinch of Cayenne

Toppings: Bee Pollen, Goji Berries, cacao nibs, additional hemp seeds and cinnamon

Blend all ingredients together in blender. Makes one very enjoyable serving! 

Read more about these superfoods in the article top-10-superfoods, also featuring aloe vera, camu camu, chlorella, fo-ti and more!

More superfood recipes you may like to try:

Raw Cacao Superfood Truffles 

Maca Cacao SuperMylk 

Chewy Chocolate MACAroons (ps. you can bake with maca … I did the research!)

 

 

Cooking Class: Raw, Vegan & Superfood Desserts @The Hermitage {San Pablo, Lake Atitlan}

Join Registered Holistic Culinary Nutritionist Lacey Budge for a 3 hour cooking class featuring raw, vegan & superfood desserts, followed by a vegetarian lunch!


Friday December 9th, 2017

10 am – 2 pm, includes lunch

The Hermitage Retreat Centre, San Pablo, Lake Atitlan Guatemala


Create delicious, easy and all natural- nutrient dense desserts that will awaken and satisfy your senses! During the class, Holistic Lacey will also share her favourite superfoods and how you can include more of them into your diet.

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Learn how to prepare (and get to enjoy!) a variety of desserts including MACA-roons, Raw Hemp Seed Halvah, Chocolate-Spirulina Pudding and more  during this 3 hour interactive cooking class hosted by The Hermitage in San Pablo, Lake Atitlan. Leave with the confidence, tips and recipes you need to go home and prepare it for your friends and family.
After the class, enjoy a hearty vegetarian lunch looking out at the lake from the beautiful gardens of The Hermitage.
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The Hermitage is an off-grid Retreat Centre, set on the shores of Lake Atitlan in the highlands of Guatemala, that supports and maintains permaculture gardens and sustainable living solutions.

Price: 250Q including lunch and cooking class
To reserve your space, please email lacey.budge@gmail.com or reply to the Facebook event on the Hermitage’s Facebook page.

Get creative in the kitchen with these autumn recipes

Pumpkin Pie Smoothie {dairy-free} by Vega One

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Roasted Fennel, Broccoli and Kale Soup by Food + Love

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Roasted Squash and Pine Nut Quinoa by Deliciously Ella

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