This is probably the cutest dessert i have ever done and this is what i love about preparing/making raw desserts…I can’t imagine anything easier than preparing a raw dessert – as always, the simplest things are the most spectacular. You’ll only need good-quality, organic, raw ingredients, and a powerful food processor, and the rest is just about playing with shapes, tastes, and textures. Not only do raw desserts keep you away from refined sugar, but they enrich your diet with healthy oils, minerals, and vitamins.
- 1 cup pitted dates
- 1 cup raw walnuts
- 1 1/2 cups raw cashews, quick soaked
- 1 large lemon, juiced (+-1/4 cup)
- 1/3 cup coconut oil, melted
- 1/2 cup + 2 Tbsp organic full fat coconut milk
- 1/2 cup agave nectar or maple syrup
- FLAVOR ADD-INS - optional
- 1/4 cup wild blueberries (fresh or frozen)
- Add dates to a food processor and blend until small bits remain and it forms into a ball. Remove and set aside.
- Next add nuts and process into a meal. Then add dates back in and blend until a loose dough forms - it should stick together when you squeeze a bit between your fingers. If it's too dry, add a few more dates through the spout while processing. If too wet, add more almond or walnut meal. Optional: add a pinch of salt to taste.
- Lightly grease a standard, 12 slot muffin tin. To make removing the cheesecakes easier, cut strips of parchment paper and lay them in the slots. This creates little tabs that makes removing them easier to pop out once frozen.
- Next scoop in heaping 1 Tbsp amounts of crust and press with fingers. To pack it down, use a small glass or the back of a spoon to compact it and really press it down. I found the bottom of a glass works well. If it sticks, separate the crust and the glass with a small piece of parchment. Set in freezer to firm up.
- Add all filling ingredients to a blender and mix until very smooth. For the coconut milk, I like to scoop the "cream" off the top because it provides a richer texture. But if yours is already all mixed together, just add it in as is.
- You don't need a Vitamix for this recipe, just a quality blender. I mixed mine for 1 minute, then "liquified" or "pureed" it until silky smooth. If it won't come together, add a touch more lemon juice or agave or a splash more coconut milk liquid as the liquid should help it blend better.
- Taste and adjust seasonings as needed. If adding peanut butter, add to the blender and mix until thoroughly combined. If flavoring with blueberry or caramel, wait and swirl on top of plain cheesecakes (optional).
- Divide filling evenly among the muffin tins. Tap a few times to release any air bubbles, then cover with plastic wrap and freeze until hard - about 4-6 hours.
- Once set, remove by tugging on the tabs or loosening them with a butter knife. They should pop right out. Our favorite way to devour these was with a little more caramel and a touch of coconut whipped cream. But they're perfect as is! Keep in the freezer for up to 1-2 weeks.
- Optional: you can set them out for 10 minutes before serving to soften, but I liked them frozen as well.
- *If your dates are not sticky and moist, you can soak them in warm water for 10 minutes, then drain. But be sure to drain thoroughly and pat dry to prevent the crust from getting soggy.
- *To quick soak cashews, pour boiling hot water over the cashews, soak for 1 hour uncovered, then drain and use as instructed.
If you’ve ever wondered how to make date caramel, this is the recipe for you! Date caramel is so easy to make and extremely delicious, but there are a couple of important tricks to know before you dive in.
1. Make sure you have moist, fresh dates. If your dates are dry and hard, they won’t blend as well and will require soaking in warm water first in order to soften them. Otherwise, you won’t achieve that creamy, caramel-like consistency. So, whenever possible, look for the freshest, most sticky dates you can find.
2. In my experience, a food processor works best to get that ultra creamy, smooth texture. Blenders just require a little more time, effort and a bit more water to get things going.
Now that you have the basics down, let’s make caramel!
- 1 cup pitted dates
- 1 tbsp melted coconut oil
- 1/4 cup water
- splash of vanilla extract
- dash of sea salt
- Add all ingredients a food processor but the salt
- Pulse/mix on low until small bits remain. Then stream water until a paste is made. You will need to scrape the down sides and encourage it along periodically
- Be sure to only add enough water to form a paste - too much and it will be too liquidy
- Leave as is, or add a pinch of salt to enhance flavour.
- Will keep covered in the refrigerator for 1-2 weeks, and often more.
- Serve it with freshly sliced apples, as a topping for your favorite raw vegan brownies or to fill raw cacao truffles.
- It also makes a wonderful natural sweetener in dishes like oatmeal and milkshakes.
Today i had the pleasure to indulge by far, the B.E.S.T. Raw, Gluten Free Dessert that ticks all the healthy boxes. A part from being Raw and Gluten Free it’s: Dairy Free, Refined Sugar Free, Eggs Free…it’s absolutely nourishing and tastes incredible.
It’s so fresh, refreshing, colourful and with an amazing tangy flavour that gives you that extra punch. A true summer hit! Sienna and I were literally fighting got the last crumble.
I have tried to develop this recipe according to my taste and i have to admit that although it doesn’t taste the same as the one i had this afternoon (no one shares their secret ingredient), it’s pretty sexy and extremely tasty as well…
Have a look at my ensemble and let me know your thoughts.
- 1/2 Cup raw buckwheat groats
- 1/4 Cup oats
- 1 Cup Medjool dates
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 3 Tbs maple or agave syrup
- 2 cups raw cashews (soaked for at least 2 hours)
- 1/4 -1/2 cup lime juice + 1 teaspoon lime zest (depending on desired lime flavor intensity)
- 1/4 cup honey (or maple syrup or other preferred liquid sweetener)
- 2 teaspoons vanilla
- pinch of salt
- 1/4 cup water (adjust according to desired consistency)
- Place the buckwheat in a food processor and process for 2-3 minutes until it becomes more like a flour, but not too fine.
- Add the oats and dates, pulse and then blend for 2-3 minutes until well mixed.
- Remove the mixture and using your fingers push down into a pie pan.
- Blend the filling ingredients together in a high-speed blender or food processor until silky smooth. Spread the filling over the crust and use a spatula or inverted knife to make the top very smooth.
- Chill the pie in the freezer for an hour, then transfer it to the fridge and let it set for another 3 hours, or overnight. Cut into slices and serve.
- Alternatively, you can make four tartlets in place of one pie.
- Cover and store the pie in the fridge for up to 3 days, or in the freezer for up to 10. If you freeze the pie, defrost the slices in the fridge for several hours before serving.
- The recipe is a bit tart, because that’s how I like my citrus, but feel free to add more sweetener to taste if you wish.
Summer is ALL about being fun, colourful, tasty, skinny, sexy, tanned, light meals, and yummy desserts/ice creams!!!
Chia seeds are a great superfood booster, so why not add them to your yoghurt, smoothies, juices, cereals, muffins, salads… even popsicles!
I LOVE chia pudding and I love coconut milk, so i came across these yummy Guilt Free Summer indulgences.These are the perfect healthy treats and will satisfy all your sugary cravings, especially when its hot outside!These chia pops are super refreshing, delicious and the raw chocolate coating adds a bit of crunch. It’s amazing how easy it is to make popsicles which are great for the kids (and adults too!). I’m so in LOVE!!
You can change your fruits. From Strawberry to Raspberries, Bananas to Blueberries…you choose!!!
The results… fabulous! The texture, the flavour and the little bits of fruit in each bite. They are refreshing and delicious and virtually guilt free! Don’t be scared, give them a try!
Enjoy your homemade chia popsicles!!
- 1/2 cup lite coconut milk
- 1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk
- 3/4 cup raspberries
- 2 tbsp chia seeds
- 1 tbsp sweetened shredded coconut
- Combine all ingredients in a large container. Mix well and close container; refrigerate 4 hours so the chia expands. Pour into 4 popsicle molds and freeze overnight.
It has been 4 months since we welcomed 2015 and for 4 months i have been dedicating 100% to my body, mind and soul. A promise i have made as soon as i welcomed the New Year, at 00 on that December 31st 2014.
I have promised to make this the healthiest year possible. Not that i haven’t been healthy in the previous years, but because i have been pregnant twice, i had certain limitations – food and exercise wise.
As soon as we welcomed January, I have been working out like mad!!!And felt soo good to finally concentrate in something that i really L.O.V.E. Working out! Sometimes solo, others with either Maya or Sienna … always with a stroller!You can find me jogging and do power walks in the streets and trails of Taipa at least 4 x a week. I have included my very own routines of Yoga and Fitness too.
A part from all this workout routine and breastfeeding Maya, i knew that something was missing, in order to increase my milk supply and the quality of my milk, increase my energy and feel lighter. I also wanted to recover faster from the pregnancy and c-section and be at my best for my family and loved ones. I have noticed – after a month of giving birth, that i was not digesting well/fast enough, and i always felt bloated at the end of the day, with a full stomach sensation..Something that i never had. I’ve been observing for 1.5 month. I knew i was eating well, but always wondered if could be healthier…i knew i needed to be more consistent with certain things. I included Juices (of course) to my day and started feeling the difference right away – More Energy. It was no news…i know exactly the benefits of adding Juices to the Lifestyle…
Since i am Breastfeeding Maya – non stop – i just can’t undergo a Juice Cleanse. I am dying to…(everybody has tried Sattva’s Cleanse Programs but me)…anyway, I knew i had to do a type of cleanse to renew, re-start, re-energize…
After my last post, I did research after research, read books, magazines and articles about Diet/Food…i start feeling that the key was to Cleanse my Body and Heal through Food!I thought why not give it a go?that could work for me…the more i learned the more i was sure that i needed to Spring Clean my Diet too. So, i decided to make a 20 Day Challenge to see the difference.
20 Days Challenge of Whole Foods Plant-Based Diet (Mostly Raw). (You can follow my Journey @marianahedegaard)
What is a Plan-Based diet?
It’s a diet based on fruits, vegetables, tubers, whole grains, and legumes; and it excludes or minimizes meat (including chicken and fish), dairy products, and eggs, as well as highly refined foods like bleached flour, refined sugar, and oil. A plant-based diet can be basically another way to say “vegan”, though many people do use the term to mean that you eat almost all plants with some animal products. I believe Veganism is the ultimate plant-based diet.
There are many different types of plant-based diets. The three most common ones are:
Vegan: No animal products such as meat, eggs, or dairy products.
Lacto-vegetarian: No meat or eggs, but dairy products are OK.
Lacto-ovo-vegetarian: No meat, but dairy products and eggs are OK. – Mine as i eat eggs 1 x a week
People ask me why this Challenge? my answer is simple. To change, to improve and to learn.
What’s the benefits of this Challenge? As a Nutritionist and being in this industry for some years now, i can’t get tired of sharing/advising that a good nutrition and a balanced diet is key to everything. Along with that, our bodies need a break every now and then. With that in mind, i always advise and insist on the same thing:
Fast at least once a week. You choose: Juice Cleanse, Water Fast, Raw food cleanse – for a day. And you will see the results right away!!Once you make it an habit, your body will be forever grateful.(Before getting pregnant Wednesdays were my Cleanse Days. I used to drink water or herbal teas for the whole day).
From my personal experience, my favorite benefits of a whole-food, plant-based lifestyle is the increased clarity of mind and energy levels. I can feel it that I am consuming what my body wants and needs on a cellular level. I love feeling overall so clean and good.
The benefits are endless: illness prevention such as diabetes and heart diseases, more energy, better mood, more positive thoughts, happier, lighter, less bloated, better circulation, less water retention, better skin, stronger hair and nails, more motivation, better digestion and of course weight loss.
How often do i eat: Breakfast (8am), Lunch (12.30), Afternoon snack (glass of Almond milk or a small bowl of probiotic yogurt and fruits), Dinner (19). Times may vary, but it’s always a 4x a day meal including the afternoon snack. It works for me, but doesn’t mean it works for you. Check your G.P or Nutritionist for advise first.
What i eat: a variety of things. This challenge pushed me to learn new recipes and their benefits!!Eating Raw and Plant-Based food only never been this easier and tastier. I am not talking about the humble lettuce and tomato salad. I am talking about Kale salads, Rice salads, vegetarian screws, grilled vegetables, couscous, quinoa… wowwww,So much choice!!!Basically i am eating the freshest and cleanest whole unprocessed foods and as as much Organic as possible, i am adding tones of superfoods and Raw nuts to the diet, eating nothing but the best and healthiest oils including Coconut Oil, good fats,eating gluten free and lactose free too. I have swapped Cow’s milk for Almond, Cashews and Rice milks, i have lactose free cheese, i drink litres of water, organic and herbal teas only including Mother’s Milk Tea, Cold pressed Juices and Smoothies and my MUST HAVE Decaf coffee. I am so motivated that i don’t even feel tempted/crave to fish. meat or seafood. I have my soups every now and then too. I have Chia Seeds pudding and Açaí bowls too…i even managed to learn how to make it. So easy, so fast, so yummy and soo healthy…Come on…
10 days have passed.
Do i Regret? NO
Do i enjoy? Yes
Do i love it? Yes
Do i recommend? Hell yeah!!!!!!
No need 20 Days like i am doing…start with 1 day and take it from there.I also recommend to follow this diet after you finished your Juice Cleanse program. This is a great way to break the cleanse and to keep with a healthy routine/lifestyle.
For me personally, it’s not a challenge because my diet – before this challenge – was very plant-based already. What really helps is not focusing on what I was giving up, but on the good things I could eat! Actually it’s very simple — you just learn to eat a variety of plants. If you slowly change your eating patterns, it’s not hard at all. Be flexible and don’t be too strict — you’ll find that it’s much easier if you allow yourself an occasional meal with animal products, especially in the first 6-12 months.
Control your quality of life by consuming a plant-based diet. Filling your plate with fruits, vegetables, legumes, and grains is the best means for disease prevention and even disease reversal. Equally important, a plant-based diet is the best means for feeling good inside and out, everyday. While it keeps your arteries clean and your cells happy, it also brightens your skin, eyes, and hair. Weight management is just an added bonus.
Eat your vegetables! A few consistent musts for your grocery list: broccoli, spinach, apples, and blueberries.
If I could make a single dietary recommendation to people looking to get healthier, it would be to move to a plant-based diet, No doubts about it.
As a healthy freak and a conscious eater, i see the importance and the need of explaining terms that we come across every day!We hear about Raw and Living Foods, but do we actually know the meaning of this words and why are they important in our diet?
At Sattva Juicery, we have in our Bottles of Goodness Raw and Living Foods, and that’s why they are considered Raw, Living Cold Pressed Juices..
Eating raw and living foods is essential to our health, since nature provided them with an abundant supply of enzymes to get the job done.
What’s the difference?
Living foods and raw foods both contain numerous enzymes; but in livingfoods, the enzyme content is much higher. For example, raw, unsprouted seeds and nuts contain enzymes in their “dormant” state. To activate the enzymes in seeds and nuts, they must be soaked in water for a period of time. Once the seeds and nuts begin to sprout, the enzymes become “active” and are then considered a “living food.”
Both raw and living foods are not heated . Any food heated over 115 degrees F destroys the enzymes in the food. Actually the degradation of enzymes begins at about 105 degrees F. All foods that are cooked are devoid of enzymes, and the molecular structure of the components of the food changes as well. So to sustain life and get the life-force energy of foods filled with high enzymatic and nutrients activities, one must eat raw foods in combination with living foods.
Why are enzymes important to us?
Enzymes assist in the digestion of food. There are three classes of enzymes:
· Metabolic enzymes, which run our bodies, organs and tissues
· Digestive enzymes, which digest our food
· Food enzymes, from raw food, which start food digestion
Enzymes are important because they assist in the digestion and absorption of food. They are catalysts that allow cells to metabolize carbohydrates, proteins and fats. They are also responsible for the respiration in cells and converting proteins into usable energy. If you eat food that is void of enzymes, your body will be undernourished and unable to utilize the nutrients from the food. This causes toxicity in the body.
Raw food is filled with multiple enzymes that aid digestion. In fact, the digestion of the carbohydrates, proteins and fats in raw food begins in the mouth at the moment that the plant cell walls are ruptured from mastication, thus releasing the food enzymes within.
Does cooking destroy enzymes?
Yessssss. As hard as it is to hear and accept because we have been cooking for centuries, this process devoids us of precious enzymes that help maintain our health. Disease and cooking originated simultaneously in the world. For instance, animals who only eat raw are healthy because their food intake in the jungle or wilderness is filled with enzymes. We have never heard of an elephant or a lion in the jungle getting a heart attack or suffering from arthritis. Better yet a gorilla getting breast cancer. Our domesticated animals eating processed food or the cooked food we give them are now facing the same disease as we are.
We know that heat destroys enzymes, but another amazing fact is that enzymes work harder at slightly warmer temperatures than they do at cooler ones.
There is a fixed amount of enzyme potential in everyone. The enzyme bank account we are born with diminishes over time if it is not subsidized by incoming enzymes and can also diminish due to different conditions and the lifestyle of the individual. By eating foods with their enzymes intact as in raw and living foods, along with supplementing the cooked food being digested with exogenous food enzymes, we are able to eradicate abnormal and pathological aging.
What are the functions of enzymes in the body?
Life as we know it could not exist without enzymes. We must thoroughly chew our food so that the enzymes are able to fully work and break the food particles down into tiny structures capable of supplying our body with nutrients. Enzymes also aid in making new bone, nerves, muscles and glands. The enzymes work directly with the liver and all the other eliminative organs to store excess food. They are used for every function that goes on in the body. Eating raw and living foods is essential to our health, since nature provided them with an abundant supply of enzymes to get the job done. Last but not least, enzymes also breakdown toxins and waste material for elimination.
Some Important Enzymes
- Amylase: Breaks down carbohydrates in the mouth from starches to simple sugars.
- Hydrochloric acid (HCL): Found in the stomach and mainly responsible for the break down of solid food into a semi-solid liquid called chyme. The chyme then leaves the pylorus area of the stomach and enters the duodenum of the small intestines where more enzymes are released via the pancreas and bile from the gallbladder to further breakdown the molecules. If one drinks while they eat, they will dilute the HCL and enzyme activity, making digestion more difficult and less efficient.
- Trypsin and chymotrypsin: Both from the pancreas, they work together to break down proteins into amino acids.
- Lipase: Also from the pancreas, lipase is an enzyme that converts fats into fatty acids and triglycerides.
I hope this information is helpful to you and encourages you to have at least two thirds of your meals raw or living.
Isn’t it what we ALL want? Feel and Look Ravishing, Amazing, Radiant, Gorgeous…the list goes on… We all know that Christmas is over…you probably still have ringing in your ears from the New Year’s and Chinese new Year’s celebrations….but already, you are raring to go for the year ahead, What a wonderful feeling: a brand new 12 months (now 10.5) with endless possibilities and opportunities!!! The excitment of a fresh start and the overwhelming thought of having to lose a few kg can be enough to keep you reaching for that extra cake slice!!! But i wonder:
Read below: You can reach your natural weight without having to count calories, or that by eating more raw food, you will awake the most vibrant, energised and inspired version of yourself!! Improved digestion, better sleep, better skin nails and hair, feeling more positive, happier and lighter are just some of the amazing benefits of eating more RAW FOODS.
As a wellness coach and holistic nutritionist, I have personally experienced the benefits of eating raw diet…i don’t follow a 100% raw diet…but i wish for everyone to experience the feeling that comes along…unlimited energy, a feeling of peace, connectedness to everything, happiness and improved creativity. My diet is 90% Raw, 10 % cooked as i eat soups..can’t say no to soups, bread, shellfish and some other healthy foods that need to be cooked in order to be better enjoyed…Not that i eat it everyday, but definitely every other day 😉 Now put Raw Diet with Yoga practice and Meditation….Pure Bliss!I can’t even describe!!! Easy does it: There are an array of misconceptions about what raw food is…But i encourage you to include raw meals in your diet as much as possible…The more raw food you consume, whether that be adding guacamole or green juices to your diet, the better you will feel. INSTEAD of getting caught up in rules and what everybody else is doing…i urge you to listen to your body and feed it the clean living foods it craves…Don’t get hung up on labels – always trust your intuition. As you start to clean up your diet, you will find that you become much more connected from a mind, body and spirit level and you’ll be able to hear you intuition much clearer…. Typically and if you don’t know, eating raw food involves eating foods that have not been heated over 47 C and excludes all cooked foods, pasteurized products, animal products and refined sugar, The main foods consumed include fruits, vegetables, green leafy veggies, nuts, seeds, sprouted legumes and see veggies!!! Raw Food comes straight from the earth and is the most natural form as possible with minimal processing. Most Raw foodists are very vigilant to ensure that their fruits, veggies, nuts, seeds and sprouted legumes are grown and sourced organically, without chemicals, toxins, pesticides and fertilizers. Enzyme Advantage: One of the main benefits of eating living food is the enzymes…In our body, enzymes are required to carry out many functions…from digestion to hair growth to healing!!!When we neglect to eat enough natural enzymes, eventually our body stars to overwork itself to produce its own, resulting in low energy, slow digestion, accelerated ageing and an open door to disease. Enzymes are sensitive – they are destroyed when exposed to heat..that’s why you should never heat raw food over 47C.
If you are interested in eating Raw, other than keeping food ingredients as natural as possible, there aren’t many rules to eating raw… Just be committed for the upgrade – choose a period where you have few commitments and ensure you have time to prepare your meals; I never experienced or hear about any negative effects from the raw lifestyle. Also, remember that to add lemon to warm water first thing in the morning…can’t be tired of repeating this one…. You can have a look here for some inspiration….i will be adding more recipes and more interesting facts about Raw Diet in the next posts…. Good luck and enjoy this special time for you and your body!!!