Chocolate Banana Cream Pie

If you know me you know that I love bananas. I also love coconut cream. I always have a stash of Trader Joe’s coconut cream in the cupboard. I little while ago Trader Joe’s was out-of-stock and I almost went crazy! Well, not quite but close.

I would like to share one of my favorite recipe that is really easy to make and is guaranteed to please your guests for any occasion. If you are not vegan, you can use real whipped cream too. This will save you a trip to Trader Joe’s.

Let’s get started:

Crust Ingredients:
1 cup pecans
1 cup walnuts
1 1/2 cups dates or raisins
pinch of salt
1/2 tsp vanilla

Chocolate – banana filling ingredients:
2 peeled bananas
1/4 cup cashew butter (or tahini butter)
2 tbsps melted coconut oil
1/4 cup agave/maple syrup
1/4 cup or less nut milk (use as little as possible)
pinch of salt
1 tsp vanilla
1/4 cup cacao powder

One or two sliced bananas

Coconut whipped cream ingredients:
1 can coconut cream, put in the fridge overnight
Seeds from 1 vanilla pod or 1 tsp of vanilla extract
Sweetener of your choice (I use maple syrup) to taste

Crust directions:
Process the nuts (in your food processor) into very small crumbs and add the dates or raisins, vanilla, and salt.
Process until it all sticks together. (be careful not to process too long)
Press into a pie dish and put in the freezer.

Crust

Chocolate – banana filling directions:
Blend all the ingredients until smooth then let it set and thicken in the fridge.
While the filling is thickening in the fridge, layer the crust with the sliced bananas.

Crust-banana

Spoon filling on top of the sliced bananas set in the fridge.

Chocolate-cream

Coconut whipped cream directions:
Put the thick coconut cream in a mixing bowl. Do not mix the water that will be in the can (if any).
Add sweetener and vanilla and whisk until you reach a smooth consistency.
Spread this all over your pie.

Cream

Sprinkle some cacao on top for garnish.

garnished

Let it set in the fridge for a few hours.

This pie is absolutely delicious. It is hard to have only one piece.

Would you like more recipes like this one?
Click Here to Subscribe

Why You Should Have Turmeric Every Day

Before there were prescriptions and over-the-counter medicines, herbs and spices were the foundation of traditional medicine practices around the world.

Fast-forward thousands of years, and researchers today are now taking a fresh look at the potential in these natural remedies. The Indian spice turmeric is right at the top of the list.

Turmeric, with its mellow flavor and bright color, is a key ingredient in curry powder, and a highlight of cooking in places from India to Nepal to Southeast Asia. Turmeric’s health benefits — along with that distinctive yellow color — come from a group of flavonoids called curcuminoids. (That’s why the dietary supplement from turmeric is called curcumin.)

As modern science is now showing, turmeric is an outstanding example of the concept that foods can powerfully support the body’s healing processes. The past few decades have witnessed intense research devoted to this “sacred spice.” Here are seven of the most important benefits it can offer:

1. It curbs fat growth.
Curcumin, the active ingredient in turmeric, appears to help suppress the growth of fat tissue and reduce weight gain, according to research from Tufts University (1).

2. It helps keep you young.
This spice can work on a deeper level, including on your DNA. In studies (2), turmeric and curcumin have shown potential to prevent DNA damage and help DNA repair. That’s good news for preventing disease and slowing the aging process.

3. It fights infection.
Researchers (3) at George Mason University have found that turmeric shows promise in combating certain viruses.

4. It reduces blood sugar.
Research on the relationship between turmeric and diabetes looks encouraging. In laboratory experiments, Indian scientists have demonstrated (4) that including the spice in your diet may be helpful in decreasing blood sugar and other complications of the disease.

5. It has antidepressant effects.
A study (5) from leading universities in China revealed that a compound found in turmeric has antidepressant properties.

6. It protects the liver.
Curcumin’s ability to reduce inflammation is being studied for its potential in protecting against liver injury. Experimental research (6) suggests that the spice seems to delay the liver damage that eventually causes cirrhosis.

7. It’s anti-inflammatory.
Traditionally, turmeric has been used (7) in India to aid in the treatment of stomach ulcers and in reducing inflammation in people with arthritis and colitis.

Because inflammation contributes to obesity (8) and other chronic diseases, reducing inflammation has become a key goal of integrated medicine.

How To Add Turmeric To Your Meals

Turmeric is available as a powder in the spice section of the supermarket. You can also find it fresh at some farmer’s markets and specialty stores. It’s a root or rhizome, that looks similar to ginger, like a carrot with multiple stems. Like ginger, you can use by peeling the skin, which reveals the characteristic orange color of turmeric, then slicing or grating.

Using turmeric is easy: Simply add a few shakes of turmeric to your favorite soups, chili, beans, vegetable dishes, or pasta sauce. It blends well into tomato-based sauces.

Not sure where to start? Turmeric is a star ingredient in many of the recipes I created for The Fat Resistance Diet. Here’s one for vegetarian curry, an easy-to-make meal that highlights the powerful anti-inflammatory ingredients garlic, ginger, and, of course, turmeric.

Ingredients
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
4 teaspoons ginger, minced
1 cup crushed tomatoes
3 cups water
1 teaspoon turmeric
1 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon cardamom
½ teaspoon sea salt
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
8 cups cauliflower florets
2 cups cooked kidney or garbanzo beans
1 cup peas
½ cup parsley, chopped

For serving:
your favorite grain, cooked, such as rice, quinoa, or millet
1. In a large heavy-bottomed pot, heat the olive oil over medium heat and add onion, garlic, and ginger. Sauté for about 5 minutes on medium. Add crushed tomatoes, water, turmeric, cumin, cardamom, salt and black pepper, stirring to mix.
2. Add the cauliflower, beans, and peas, stirring to coat with sauce. Cover pot and simmer for 7 to 8 minutes, until cauliflower is fork tender. Add parsley, stirring to combine, then serve over rice, quinoa, or millet. Serves 4.

(1) http://jn.nutrition.org/content/139/5/919.abstract?sid=59a1f570-7d51-494a-85e0-2129017ecf6b
(2) http://apjcn.nhri.org.tw/server./APJCN/17%20Suppl%201/265.pdf
(3) http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22847000
(4) http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26088351
(5) http://bmccomplementalternmed.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/1472-6882-13-299
(6) http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20332524
(7) http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17569205
(8) http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23964081

Thanks to http://www.mindbodygreen.com/0-22248/why-you-should-have-turmeric-every-day.html

Golden Milk Tea Recipe

The healthful properties of turmeric and ginger are just now beginning to emerge in the West.

Asian cultures have used these herbs for millennia, not only for their flavor but for their medicinal power.

Everyone likes a warm drink on a cold day.

Rather than imbibing on a cup of sugar or caffeine, you can enjoy something that will not only give you that warm, fuzzy feeling but will help your body as well.

Savory Flavor with an Impressive Impact

The rhizomes of turmeric and ginger are used in cooking and teas and as supplements. Turmeric is known for its deep yellow color and is what makes golden milk golden.

A common herb used in curry, turmeric has a little bite to its otherwise rich, metallic taste. The curcumin in turmeric has been shown to reduce blood pressure [1], perform better than Prozac at treating depression, and protect the body from various toxins. It also is an anti-inflammatory and antioxidant. Sounds very much like a superfood.

Ginger could be referred to as a super herb. Whether used to aid digestion, as a detoxifier or to fight cancer, ginger also has a flavor kick that adds depth.

Raw ginger is carried by most large markets and will keep for a long time if kept cool and dry. Fresh turmeric is more difficult to find but health and Asian markets carry it, more so in the winter months. Either in its powdered form is a viable second choice.

Honey is a superfood whose benefits for human health are too numerous to list here. With antioxidant and antibacterial properties, it is used in this recipe because it is a healthy sweetener.

A Warm, Delicious Superdrink

Food is all about chemistry: individual ingredients interacting and combining to form different compounds. Given the nutritive factors of turmeric, ginger, coconut oil, honey, and milk, when combined their impacts expand:

When turmeric and ginger are mixed with coconut oil, they become more readily absorbed by the body (one of the important features of healthy saturated fats). Combined with piperine found in black pepper, absorption of the curcumin in turmeric is increased exponentially.

All that being said, here is a recipe for a delicious drink that will warm and nourish your body.

Golden Milk Recipe

Turmeric Paste

Ingredients:
¼ cup turmeric powder or 1-inch knob of fresh turmeric, finely grated
½ teaspoon ground black pepper
½ cup filtered water
Optional: 1/8 teaspoon powdered ginger or ½-inch piece of fresh ginger, finely grated

Directions:
Cook all ingredients together in a small saucepan over medium heat. Stir well until the mixture thickens—it doesn’t take long. When a paste has formed, remove from heat and allow to cool.

Golden Milk

Ingredients:
1 cup milk (almond, coconut, or organic cow’s milk)
1 teaspoon raw organic coconut oil
¼ teaspoon turmeric paste (or more, to taste)
Honey, to taste (unpasteurized and local, if you can get it)

Directions:
Combine all ingredients except honey in a small saucepan. Cook on medium heat, stirring constantly. When completely blended and hot (but not boiling), remove from heat and add honey to taste, stirring until dissolved.

Thanks to http://dailyhealthpost.com/turmeric-ginger-golden-milk-drink-recipe/

Would you like more recipes like this one?
Click Here to Subscribe

Neapolitan Raw Cheese Cake

This was a nice treat for New Year’s Eve. I had saved a few pieces of Neapolitan raw cheesecake I had made for a dinner I had with friends the week before. I wanted to save these pieces to end the year with a Bang!

This raw cheesecake is so good and smooth that it is a  great alternative to the lactose version. It is pretty easy to make and a little more time consuming if you make it in 3 colors, but it is worth it.

Ingredients:
Crust:
1 cup raw almonds (pecan or walnuts will also work)
1 cup soft Medjool dates
½ tsp vanilla extract
¼- ½ tsp sea salt

Filling:
3 cups raw cashews, soaked for at least 5 hours, overnight is best for a very smooth texture
juice of 4 lemons
the seeds of 2 whole vanilla bean (or 2 tsp vanilla extract)
2/3 cup raw coconut oil, melted
2/3 cup raw honey (solid or liquid.)(Vegans use agave nectar.)
½ cup (or more to taste) sifted raw cacao
1 cup strawberries (thaw completely if using frozen)

Directions:
Crust:
1. Place the nuts in the food processor and pulse to chop until the large pieces are broken down.
2. Add the dates, sea salt and vanilla and pulse to chop until it starts to stick together. (It is preferable to have a finer crust than a chunky one). If you find it hard to get it to stick together, just add a few drop of water as you pulse and it should do the trick.
3. In a 9″ spring-form pan place in the bottom a cut round wax paper. This will help avoid your crust to stick to the bottom of your pan.
4. Scoop out the mixture and evenly tap it in the bottom of the pan. Place it in the freezer.

Filling:
1. Warm coconut oil and honey in a small saucepan over really low heat until liquid.
2. In the most powerful food processor/blender you own (if you have a Vitamix or Blendtec, use that) place all liquid ingredients (melted coconut oil, honey, lemon juice, vanilla) and mix well.
3. Drain and rinse the cashews and gradually add them to the liquid.
4. After you have mixed it well and you get a homogeneous mixture, you should have a little over 5 cups of thick liquid. you now have to separate it in 3. 2 cups for the vanilla part, 2 cups for the chocolate part and 1+ cup for the strawberry part.
5. Mix the sifted cacao with 2 cups of the mixture and pour it on top of the crust and place it back in the freezer for it to harden a little.
6. Mix the melted or fresh strawberries with the 1+ cup of the mixture until smooth. Pour on top of the chocolate mixture. You might have to wait until the chocolate part in the freezer has hardened a little. Then pour the remaining vanilla mixture on top of the strawberry and place in the freezer until solid.

To serve:
Remove the raw cheesecake from the freezer at least 30 minutes before serving.
Run a smooth, sharp knife under hot water and cut into slices.
Serve on its own, or with fresh fruit or make a strawberry coulis by melting 2 cups of strawberries and mix it in the blender until smooth and pour on top of the cut pieces. If you find it too bitter, you can add some sweetener.
Store leftovers in the freezer (if any).

20151231_204810 (2)

Would you like more recipes like this one?
Click Here to Subscribe

Succulent Chocolate Mousse Cake

Rich, succulent and melting in your mouth is the best way to describe this recipe.

I was out for dinner a few weeks ago and I ordered a dessert and got really surprised with the taste and the texture. I had to ask the server what were the ingredients of this amazing dessert. The one that gave me an Ah Ah moment was the full-fat coconut cream… When I heard it, I say “Of course!” and it gave me the idea to create this dessert.

I am sure you will love it and don’t be shy to share it with your friends and family.

Crust:
½ cup pecans
½ cup walnuts
½ cup raisins
½ cup Medjool dates
1/8 tsp salt

Filling:
2 cans of full-fat coconut cream
¼ cup maple syrup
½ cup cacao powder
1 tsp vanilla extract

Topping:
½ cup cacao powder
¼ cup of melted coconut oil
½ cup of maple syrup or liquid sweetener of your choice

Crust direction:
1. Place the nuts, raisins, and dates in a food processor and mix well until the mixture stick together.
2. Mix in the salt
3. Press the crust in the bottom of a 9 in x 9 in or equivalent glass pan.

2015-11-14 11.25.44

Filling Direction:
1. Pour the 2 cans of coconut cream into a large bowl.
2. Mix well with a hand mixer until you get a soft mixture.
3. Add the vanilla and maple syrup.
4. Add the cacao powder slowly and keep mixing as you do so.
5. Keep mixing until you get a smooth uniform mixture.
6. Pour the mixture on top of the crust and place in the freezer.

2015-11-14 11.26.07

Topping directions:
1. Mix the coconut oil, maple syrup and cacao powder until uniformly mixed.
2. Once the filling is frozen, pour the chocolate mixture on top of it and spread uniformly.
3. Put back in the freezer.

2015-11-14 16.36.17

2015-11-14 18.44.33

Remove from the freezer 20-30 minutes before serving.

Would you like more recipes like this one?
Click Here to Subscribe

Raw Orange & Chocolate Cake

I have been eating and making raw vegan desserts for about 5 years. After making many recipes and experimenting with my own creation, I have to say that I now have more successes than failures. Yeah!

One of my successes was last night. I invited my neighbor for dinner and I know that she loves Orange-Chocolate treats. Therefore in her honor, I created this amazing and light dessert.

I say light because instead of using nuts for the filling I used frozen bananas. It worked out really nicely and no added sugar necessary. Try this one out during the holiday and you will amaze your friends.

Crust
1 cup of almonds
16 Medjool dates
2 tbs cacao powder
Zest of an orange

Filling
¼ cup coconut oil melted
¼ cup cacao powder
½ cup orange juice
3-4 large frozen bananas

Topping
¼ cup cocoa powder
¼ cup maple syrup
2 tbs coconut oil melted

Crust directions:
1. Place the almonds and Medjool dates in a food processor and mix well until the mixture sticks together.
2. Mix in the cacao powder.
3. Press the crust in the bottom of a 9 in x 9 in or equivalent glass pan.
4. Sprinkle the orange zest onto the lightly press crust.

photo 1

photo 2

Filling directions:
1. Place the bananas in a Vitamix mixer (if you don’t have a Vitamix, let the bananas melt to soften them) and mix them until they are all crumbled.
2. Pour in the orange juice, coconut oil, and mix until you get a uniform mixture.
3. Mix in the cacao powder
4. Pour the banana mixture on top of the crust and place in the freezer.

photo 3

Topping directions:
1. Mix the coconut oil, maple syrup and cacao powder until uniformly mixed.
2. Once the filling is frozen, drip the chocolate mixture on top of it my making criss-cross or zig-zag patterns
3. Put back in the freezer.

photo 4

Pull out of the freezer 15 minutes before serving.

Would you like more recipes like this one?
Click Here to Subscribe