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Saturday, February 11, 2017

Dark Chocolate Cacao Nut Cups

GLUTEN-FREE  |  DAIRY-FREE



If you're looking for a healthy homemade Valentine's Day treat, these are for you. The dark chocolate cups are filled with a mixture of raw cacao beans, coconut, walnuts, and dates, giving them a soft and chewy texture, and a deep chocolate flavor.

Yield: 12 cups


Ingredients:
  • 8 ounces dark chocolate, 72% or darker
  • 1/2 cup raw cacao beans (or substitute cacao nibs)
  • 1/2 cup raw walnuts
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened dried shredded coconut
  • 7 dates, pitted
  • Pinch sea salt
  • 1 tablespoon raw honey

Equipment:
  • Food processor
  • Silicone mini cupcake mold with 12 cups

Directions:
  1. Fill a medium saucepan with an inch or two of water and warm it over low heat. Place the dark chocolate inside a glass or stainless steel bowl. Place the bowl on top of the saucepan, cover, and heat until just melted. Do not overcook the chocolate.
  2. Once the chocolate has just melted, add a spoonful to the bottom of each cup. Rotate the mold gently to make sure that the bottom and sides of each cup are completely coated with melted chocolate. Place it in the fridge to harden.
  3. Add the cacao, walnuts, coconut, dates, sea salt, and honey to a food processor and pulse until finely chopped.
  4. Once the chocolate inside the mold has hardened, fill each one with cacao mixture. Press down gently and flatten the top. Fill most of the cup but leave enough room for a layer of chocolate on top.
  5. Spoon melted chocolate over each cup, enough to cover the nut mixture completely and seal the edges.
  6. Transfer the cups to the fridge to set for 2 hours or more. 
  7. Before serving, take the cups out of the fridge 20 minutes in advance so they have time to soften a bit. Arrange them on a serving plate or inside a gift box while they are cold to avoid leaving fingerprints behind.

Saturday, January 28, 2017

Placentophagy and a Postprtum Smoothie


Placentophagy is the practice of consuming placenta after childbirth. It's common among mammals and gaining popularity with humans too, especially after celebrity moms have endorsed it as a way to ward off postpartum depression, increase milk production, replenish nutrients, and speed recovery after delivery.

Saturday, December 3, 2016

How to Properly Marinate Fish and Seafood


My mother-in-law Méranie is from Martinique, a French island where fish and seafood are a large part of the local diet. This is her technique for marinating whole fish but it can be applied to any kind of seafood. Here I use wild-caught mackerel from my local fish market. The secret is to marinate it long enough for it to be flavorful, but not long enough for the citrus juice to "cook" the fish.

Saturday, November 19, 2016

Mixed Nuts with Thai Flavors

DAIRY-FREE  |  GLUTEN-FREE  |  GRAIN-FREE


These savory mixed nuts are full of Thai flavors: coconut, lime, tamari, and ginger. A Thai cook would add some sugar, but instead I added a touch of honey. I usually recommend eating foods unsweetened, but in this case, a small amount of a natural sugar really helps balance the spicy and salty flavors. You can make this healthy snack ahead or time it right and serve it straight from the oven, just slightly cooled. When the nuts are still warm they have a unique soft and succulent texture.

Saturday, October 29, 2016

Cocoa-Spiced Walnuts

GLUTEN-FREE | GRAIN-FREE | DAIRY-FREE | DETOX-FRIENDLY


These detox-friendly nuts can be an on-the-go snack, a topping for salads and yogurt, or an elegant garnish for dessert. Or they can be dessert itself. This recipe uses cocoa powder as a spice, like cinnamon. Because the nuts are unsweetened, they go well with sweet dishes as well as savory ones. 

Saturday, October 15, 2016

Grain-Free Granola

GLUTEN-FREE  |  DAIRY-FREE  | VEGAN


This nutty, crumbly topping has a texture similar to granola, but it doesn't contain oats. It's simply a mixture of nuts, coconut, cacao nibs, and dried fruits, so it's naturally gluten-free and grain-free.

You can make this recipe your own using your favorite fruit and nut combinations.  If you eat ground flax seeds regularly, you can add them to this mix.

Saturday, September 24, 2016

Zucchini Noodle Bowl with Shrimp and Tomatoes

Gluten-Free | Grain-Free | Dairy-Free Variation | Vegan Variation


This recipe highlights vegetables that are in season right now—zucchini and tomatoes—as well as a popular kitchen tool—a spiralizer—that turns them into noodles. Vegetable noodles are a healthy alternative to pasta made from processed flour. They are full of fiber and free of gluten and the refined carbohydrates that raise blood sugar and insulin levels and promote inflammation throughout the body.

Saturday, September 10, 2016

Coconut Chai Chia Seed Pudding

VEGAN  |  GLUTEN-FREE  |  DAIRY-FREE


This light and fluffy pudding is rich and satisfying. Because it's made with chia seeds, it has a texture similar to tapioca pudding. Chai spices like cinnamon and ginger add flavor as well as health benefits. They've been found to lower inflammation, improve digestion and blood sugar control, and support the body's natural detoxification mechanisms. This pudding takes only minutes to make, but it has to sit overnight in the fridge before you can eat it, so plan ahead and make it in advance.

Saturday, August 20, 2016

Cherry Chickpea Quinoa Salad

GLUTEN-FREE  |  DAIRY-FREE  |  VEGAN  |  VEGETARIAN


This healthy whole grain salad is light yet satisfying and full of antioxidants, protein, fiber, and healthy fat. Fresh cherries give it an unexpected fruity flavor which complements the fresh herbs and raw walnuts. It can be eaten at room temperature, so it's easy to take to work or to the beach.

Saturday, August 13, 2016

Tofu Salad with Korean Gochujang Sauce

GLUTEN-FREE  |  DAIRY-FREE  |  VEGETARIAN


Tofu can be bland but this flavorful sauce really dresses it up. It features gochujang, a Korean fermented chili paste. You could drizzle this sauce over almost anything or serve it as a flavorful condiment at your next barbecue. I garnished this dish with raw hemp hearts but sesame seeds would be more traditional to Korean cuisine.