Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Chaga Chai


CHAGA people!  If it's not on your radar yet, you're in for a treat.  Chaga, known as the "King of Medicinal Mushrooms" grows on birch trees and has been used for centuries in folk medicine for its exceptional health benefits.  It's finally worked its way into the western psyche and is the subject of promising cancer and HIV treatment research.  There's so much information available online about chaga and its benefits, that it's a bit overwhelming to try sum it all up.  So I won't, I'm really just here to offer a recipe.  But I will leave a few links at the bottom of this post in case your interest is piqued and you'd like to find out more.  

I only learned about chaga a couple of months ago when a friend mentioned that he had drunk it all winter last year (Canadian winter, people) and never got sick.   As it was close to Christmas time, I latched onto the idea of making a chaga tea mix for Christmas gifts.  That sent me down the rabbit hole of chaga research and now I'm hooked.  (Thanks Kier!)

Here's a bullet point summary of the benefits of chaga:

  • Boosts Immune System
  • Is an extraordinarily powerful antioxidant
  • Is a potent adaptogen
  • Has anti-viral, anti-microbrial, and anti-inflammatory properties
  • Has anti-tumor effects

Thursday, January 5, 2017

Superpower Quick Bread


Hello dear friends and readers!  I hope that all of you are doing well, reading this in good health, and feeling ready for the year to come.  It's been a long time since we've seen each other here - close to two years already since my last post.  My apologies.  There's such a glut of awesome vegan food blogs on the web these days, I don't often feel like I have something new that needs to be shared.  This bread, however, is damn tasty and I figured a few of you might appreciate it.  So here you go!  Happy new year.

I struggled to settle on a name because this bread has a lot of stand-out ingredients and "Apple Banana Pecan Almond-flour Flax Bread" is a bit wordy.  So I decided to go with Superpower Quick Bread.  Nonspecific, while alerting the reader to impending awesomeness.

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Apple Flax Bread


Hello there readers!  It's been a while.  I have to be honest - since having the baby I haven't had a whole lot of mental energy for the kitchen.  It used to be that I'd walk around dreaming up recipes to post on here.  Now I mostly walk around looking for coffee.  I eat at my kitchen counter.  I have waaaaay too many cookies in my diet.  Smoothies and salads are all but absent from my world.  I'm busy.  I'm breastfeeding.  I'm mesmerized by the new little boy in my life.  My jeans are tight and I can't believe that most of the things in my closet used to fit MY body, but I'm happy.  Happy and extremely fortunate.  Grateful.  Now, with spring finally coming to Montreal, I'm feeling inspired to start cleaning up my diet again.

I need baked goods in my life.  This is a fact.  If I don't bake healthy things, I will stuff my face with cookies.  Not healthy cookies, cookies that my evil husband brings home from the drug store because he, like me, is a cookie pig.  So here we go - Apple Flax Bread.  Step one towards edging out chocolate chunk cookies and getting back into my jeans.  Also; dang tasty.  I hope you like it.  It's very low in sugar.  If you prefer a sweeter bread, double the sugar, or add a few tablespoons of maple syrup.

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Green Protein Smoothie


For me, green smoothies are all about packing good stuff into my diet, things that I might not get around to eating otherwise.  Dark, leafy greens such as kale, spinach, swiss chard and collard greens are loaded with vitamins A and C, while also being very high in calcium and iron, not to mention fiber, phytonutrients, and digestion-enhancing enzymes.  Fruits and berries (common smoothie ingredients) are also great for you, but I personally never have a hard time working them into my diet.  It’s easy to toss back a few handfuls of blueberries, less easy to throw down a couple cups of kale. 

That said, green smoothie making isn't as straight-forward as fruit smoothie making.  Throw fruit in a blender and, 9 times out of 10, you’re going to be pleased with the results.  Throw lettuce in a blender, however, and you might end up wondering why you’re choking down a pureed salad.

It helps to have a couple of tips.  

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Summer Fattoush


Hello dear friends and readers!  It's been brought to my attention that Powered by Plantz is well over-due for a bit of love.  It's true, I haven't written since February.  Multiple factors have contributed to this little break - a new and ugly kitchen that's really hard to take photos in (I'll dazzle you with pictures of it soon, I promise), the start of a new business venture (Check out Dirty Bird Cold Brew Coffee!) and a totally unexpected, not-at-all-planned, holy what-the-whaaaaaa? pregnancy.  That's right folks, I'm pregnant, and have been so for about five and a half months.

Now I know that women do this whole pregnancy thing ALL THE TIME, but the truth is that it freaks me out and I haven't been quite myself.  To stay on the topic of food, let's just say that I've been eating my fair share of grilled cheeses (I'm so sad we're out of cheese now that I've just typed that), french fries, frozen veggie nuggets, and all matter of not-so-good-for-you food.  I'm not saying this to be down on myself, I'm just saying that I doubt you guys are really interested in a post about how to heat a veggie dog and stuff it in your face in under five minutes, or how to eat left-over pizza at 11pm, or how to eat a pint of Ben and Jerry's for dinner.  Feel me?  I haven't been feeling terribly inspired in the kitchen, and I haven't been terribly vegan either.   Which is another reason I haven't posted in a while;  this has almost always been a vegan blog, and I'm on the fence about whether or not I want to switch that up.  For today, I don't have the energy to get into the debate (playing the pregnancy card!), I just wanted to share a simple recipe for an amazingly delicious and fresh fattoush.

Saturday, February 22, 2014

Gingerbread Protein Pancakes - Gluten Free!


I love buckwheat flour for pancakes and quick breads.  It's rich, flavourful and loaded with nutrients, protein and fiber.  In fact, it just beats the crap out of wheat flour in terms of the nutrition it brings to the body.  As a bonus, it's naturally sticky, which makes it a uniquely easy gluten-free flour to use.  (There's no need to add xanthan gum, guar gum or eggs to get buckwheat to stick together.)   I used a 50/50 mix of buckwheat and brown rice flours here, but if you don't have brown rice flour on hand, feel free to go 100% buckwheat.

And please note:  These pancakes are not only for the gluten-free people among us.  They're just some damn tasty pancakes that happen to be gluten free.

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Ultra-Dark Chocolate and Pumpkin Seed Bark


This chocolate is inspired by two things.  First; the disgustingly, wonderfully, alarmingly addictive product known as Bark Thins Snacking Chocolate.  It is pure evil in a bag.  I fell victim to a bag of it once and resolved never to buy it again, lest I snack myself into a diabetic coma.  Second; I'm currently following the Clean Program by Alejandro Junger M.D. (more on that below).  No sugar is allowed on the Clean program, which rules out most commercial chocolates.  Coconut sugar, however, is game-on (in moderation, of course) which makes this recipe possible.  Apparently, coconut sugar is high in minerals and has a relatively low glycemic index, making it a pretty decent alternative sweetener.  I find it to be a lot less sweet than regular sugar.