DEHYDRATED BUCKWHEAT GRANOLA COOKIES - FOR HIPPIES ONLY


Oh my gosh! I can feel the love coming from every direction!!!

My book Healthy Food Healthy Home Healthy Life was released this week and every copy I had was given to stores and called for. I am so thrilled to be able to share my recipes AND my story! My tale is honest, challenging and life changing and I feel quite vulnerable to the world now that it's out there. But it's out there to help motivate and inspire others to change for the better. It's all information I wish I had 10 years ago. I would have loved to feel THIS good in my early 20's.


Thank you so much to everyone who pre-ordered one, and for anyone who would still like a copy or two you can message me on here or on my 'Mandy's Tips for Everyday Health' facebook page.


These cookies are our new fave treat! You can dehydrate them as cookies or just pour the mixture on the tray and break it off into granola clusters. You can use either maple syrup or unpasteurized honey for the sweetener and any nut butter you wish. Totally make your own and play with the recipe or follow mine exactly. Either way I promise these will hit the spot. This recipe makes lots so be willing to share. 

It will last for 3-4 weeks in an air tight bag.


If you like your treats sweet and salty like me, sprinkle a bit of ground celtic sea salt on top of your cookies before you place them in the dehydrator! MMMM I'm such a cookie monster.


DEHYDRATED BUCKWHEAT GRANOLA COOKIES
These cookies are crunchy on the outside and soft in the inside, just like an awesome baked cookie BUT BETTER cuz they are raw! Because the seeds and nuts are soaked you will be able to digest them easier. These cookies are jam packed with awesome nutrients that will make your body happy all day long. Tons of minerals, protein, vitamins, phytonutrients, fiber and enzymes. Oh and they taste amazing too. Bonus!

Makes 55 small cookies

2 cups raw buckwheat groats, sprouted - to see the full process click HERE
1 cup almonds, soaked
1 cup sunflower seeds, soaked
1 cup pumpkin seeds, soaked

2 cups quick oats
2 Tbsp. hemp seeds
1 Tbsp. poppy seeds
1 Tbsp. chia seeds
1 tsp. ground celtic sea salt

1 cup nut butter, I used organic crunchy peanut butter
1 cup unpasteurized honey
1 Tbsp. pure vanilla extract

1. NIGHT BEFORE - Soak raw buckwheat groats for 1 hours exactly, covered in water. Stir at the half an hour mark and at the hour mark. Water will be pink and murky. Rinse in a fine mesh sieve and place sieve in a bowl. cover with a plate and let sit on the counter covered over night or for 5 hours. This is basically how you sprout buckwheat.

ALSO soak almonds and seeds in a large bowl, covered with water, over night.

2. NEXT DAY - Take the plate off the buckwheat and stir to help dry.
Rinse and drain almonds and seeds. Lay out on a plate to let dry.

3. Prepare oats, hemp seeds, poppy seeds, chia seeds and sea salt in a large bowl.

4. Mix nut butter, honey and vanilla in a large pan on the lowest heat until fully combined. Turn off heat (do not let it get hot or the honey will pasteurize). Pour into the dry ingredient bowl and stir well. Add buckwheat, almonds and seed and stir again, very well.

5. Let mixture sit on the counter for half an hour to thicken.

6. Using a tsp. scoop out cookies onto the paraflexx dehydrator sheets. 16 cookies to a tray. Use all the mixture. If you don't want to make cookies just pour the mixture onto 3 trays and spread out.

7. Dehydrate on 115° for 10 hours. If your making cookies take them off the paraflexx sheets and move them straight onto the mesh tray and dehydrate again for 10 hours on 115°. If your just making granola clusters break the granola up into large pieces and place it on the mesh trays and dehydrate it for 10 more hours as well.

Store in an air tight container/bag and will last up to 3 weeks.



VEGAN GF BREAD


We've been "off" store bought bread now for months and I'll admit it's been hard! I've been making chia pudding parfaits for the kid’s lunches a couple times a week, which have been so delish! I've made chocolate, chia, and caramel. Some I added fruit and some I added coconut whip cream. I added sprouted buckwheat to all of them for some extra nutrients. We love them! Banana bread and muffins have been on the weekly rotation as well. Feeding a family of five is crazy! Food doesn't last long.

Now it's time I get into gear and make my own bread. I've been making everything else so why has it taken me this long to make bread!? It's intimidating! I was researching gluten-free, refined sugar free options and I found this recipe from Forkandbeans.com. And bonus, it's vegan! I made the recipe and followed it exactly (which was so hard for me because I am so used to modifying everything).


So, the first thing I did was make Cara's gluten-free flower blend. It's 3 cups oat flower, 3 cups millet flower, 1 1/2 cups arrowroot powder and 1 1/2 cups tapioca starch/flour. Mix it up and pour it into an air tight container. I took out 3 cups of flour mixture for the bread recipe and poured the rest into a large Ziploc bag and pushed out the excess air as much as possible.

Next I made the yeast mixture. I warmed 1 cup of homemade coconut milk (which was basically 1 can coconut milk with 3 cups water - blended and kept in a mason jar in the fridge) and added it to a bowl, along with the yeast and sugar. For the sugar I used coconut sugar. I whisked the 3 ingredients for 30 seconds until the sugar had dissolved and then set the timer for 10 minutes. Meanwhile I measured the apple cider vinegar, melted the coconut oil in a pot, ground the chia seeds and warmed 1 cup of filtered water.

Once the 10 minute timer went off I added the remaining wet ingredients to the bowl. Cara says to let it sit for 2 minutes but I think I let mine sit for 20. I was busy with Kyri and I still had to add the dry ingredients to another bowl.


The dry ingredients consisted of 3 cups of Cara's blend, buckwheat flour, baking soda, baking powder and I used 1/2 tsp. of ground celtic sea salt. Stirred it up real nice and then poured in the wet ingredients and stirred again. I greased a regular bread pan generously with coconut oil and poured in the batter and spread it out evenly.

I decided to chop 1 tsp. of pumpkin seeds and 1 tsp. of sunflower seeds and sprinkle them on the top of the bread, along with some poppy seeds and sesame seeds. Then I covered it with a tea towel and placed it in my dehydrator, set the temp for 110° and set the timer for 20 minutes. If you do not have a dehydrator you can just follow Cara's instructions.

After 20 minutes I placed the loaf in the oven and baked it for 60 minutes, just like she said and it turned out PERFECTO. I'm excited to try more of Cara's recipes! Thanks for the awesome blog and the delicious bread Cara! My family is happy!!


I'm so stoked for a veggie sandwich with toasted homemade bread.

Click here to see the recipe!

CREAMY CRIMINI MUSHROOM SPAGHETTI WITH ROASTED PAPRIKA CAULIFLOWER



Hello Everyone! I hope you've been enjoying the New Year. 

I've been "growing" substantially in the past couple weeks.

I've decided to make some minor positive changes in my life and to stick to them and to work on them for the rest of the year. Those changes are: to wake up pre-dawn and meditate and have some alone time before the day begins, and to try to be compassionate in all situations.

I have been reminded by the higher power that I am not in control of my life. Sure I may have goals and dreams and love to work towards them, but life has that way of throwing you off track and you need to deal with it. It was hard when I was younger, getting used to the fact that the things I wanted weren't necessarily things that were going to happen. Now I just give it the ol' 'Everything happens for a reason and change my thought process' (something parents need to do often).


I'm extremely proud that I have stuck with my goals the previous years, no alcohol, minimal to no refined sugar, dairy and gluten. I used to love going to our local little cafe and get a veggie sandwich but I feel as though my life is evolving for the better and I am finally happy to say I am moving on veggie sandwich!


My health book will be in town soon! I am so over the moon about people reading my book and hopefully being inspired to make a few healthy changes in their lives. It's being printed as I write this. I am also a bit nervous about "exposing" myself to the world. It really is a different lifestyle to what most people live but I believe it is something worth sharing because I feel as though I have found happiness and joy (which I had lost in my 20's and was worried I would never get them back). I now believe that life doesn't need to deteriorate as you become older with age, you will always keep growing older but you become wiser and the healthier you are your body will start to heal and become young again. I feel as though at times, because of my high energy levels, that I feel as though I have been ageing backwards. 29!? No way. I feel 23!

So, this pasta has been the staple comfort food over the holidays. It's so easy to prepare and even the kids love it. It is made without the use of dairy, refined sugar or gluten. Seth and I both despised mushrooms but now love them. Please note to never eat mushrooms raw! They have properties that must be killed off during the cooking process or else they are a bit toxic to the body (when raw).


I hope you all get the chance to share this pasta dish with the people you love. Invite friends and family over and enjoy their company. Life is too short to not fill your home with love as often as possible!


Bless this meal and bless your life!



CREAMY CRIMINI MUSHROOM SPAGHETTI WITH ROASTED PAPRIKA CAULIFLOWER

Serves 3

Prepare ahead - Soak 1/2 cup of raw cashews, covered in filtered water, for 4 hours



  • 1 pk. brown rice spaghetti noodles

  • 10 cauliflower pieces, as big or small as you like
  • 3 Tbsp. coconut oil
  • 1 tsp. paprika 

Sauce
  • 1/2 cup raw cashews, soaked 
  • 2 large cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 medium red onion, diced
  • 1 1/2 cups of mushroom broth, homemade or store bought
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp. Braggs Liquid Aminos or Tamari (soy sauce alternative)
  • 1 Tbsp. nutritional yeast
  • 7 crimini mushrooms, sliced, diced or halved
  • 1 Tbsp. Mrs. Dash seasoning
  • 2 tsp. potato starch

Garnish

  • celtic sea salt, ground

1. Soak cashews for 4 hours. Rinse.

2. Preheat oven to 350° F (175° C). In a large pan add 4 Tbsp. filtered water. Add minced garlic and diced onion. Turn on to medium/low heat. Cover cook garlic and onion until soft, stirring often.

3. Once garlic and onion are cooked add them to a high speed blender along with the soaked cashews, 1 cup mushroom broth, Bragg’s Liquid Aminos, and nutritional yeast. Blend until smooth. I like to blend it 3 times – for 1 minute each time, to make sure it is extra creamy.


4. Cauliflower - Melt coconut oil in a medium pan over low heat. Once melted add cauliflower pieces. Coat pieces in oil. Add cauliflower to a baking sheet, lined with parchment paper. Sprinkle on paprika. Bake for 20-25 minutes on the middle rack. 

5. In the large pan add 1/2 cup mushroom broth and cut mushrooms and fry on medium/low heat until soft, 8-10 minutes. Cover in Mrs. Dash seasoning, cover and turn off heat.


6. Pour in half of the blended cashew mixture and bring heat to medium. Add 2 tsp. potato starch to the second half of your cashew mixture in the blender and stir with a fork, breaking up any clumps. Once your gravy in the pan is hot pour in the second half and constantly whisk until it thickens. Turn the heat off right away once you notice it thicken and continue to stir until it cools (if sauce is too thick add more mushroom broth – 1 tsp. at a time). Take off heat and cover.

7. Fill a medium pot with filtered water 3/4 full. Bring it to a boil. Add brown rice spaghetti noodles. Leave on to boil under noodles bend and sink in to the pot. Turn head down to low and set the timer for 9 minutes. Stir noodles every 3 minutes. Leave uncovered. Once the timer goes off take out a noodle, blow and bite. If too starchy add 2 more minutes to the timer. If noodle is soft - they are done. Noodle should be slightly firm in the centre because the noodles will continue to cook, even after draining. Drain out hot water and rinse the pasta in cold water, drain again. Add pasta to the large pan with the mushroom sauce. Gently toss. Serve pasta on to plates and garnish with celtic sea salt.

We also garnish each meal with nutritional yeast, chia seeds, and hemp hearts.

Store left overs in an air tight container in the fridge. Will last up to 1 week. Reheat in a pan on the stove on medium/low heat – may need to add 1 tbsp. mushroom broth.

* This mushroom sauce is also great on boiled or baked potatoes, brown rice or any brown rice pasta. Sprinkle on a bit of ground celtic sea salt and serve.




IMMUNE BOOSTING WARM MUSHROOM SPINACH SALAD


Ya ya!! I hope everyone is just as excited as I am. This holiday season was awesome but when everything goes back to our “regular" routine I will be much more...balanced and settled.

This is my first recipe for 2015. Exciting!! I chose a salad because I noticed my salad section in my recipe index is lacking. And I love salads but we pretty much eat 3 salads in this house; our basic garden salad with my honey garlic vinaigrette, my taco salad and my kale salad with the creamy cashew dressing. It's definitely time to add a new keeper to the list. 

Now I know what some of you are thinking...MUSHROOMS...ON SALAD? GROSS! I didn't start liking mushrooms until I started eating healthy. Then I started cooking them the right way and I fell in love with them. But if you don't like mushrooms you can totally skip them. All of the other ingredients like the pine nuts, green beans, boiled eggs and chopped bell pepper make it plenty delish. And the dressing is quite powerful.


So goals for 2015. We have decided to go see Maroon 5 in Vancouver, March 29th! I AM SO STOKED!! I plan on training to run a half marathon this year AND I want to start attending yoga classes. I do yogalattes at home 2-3 times a week but I want to add something new to the mix. And also keep my 2 Zumba classes in the routine as well. Tod is trying to beat his marathon time to qualify for the Boston Marathon (I'm so proud). By Feb I want to host a healthy cooking class. I want to show people HOW to start adding healthier ingredients to their foods, how to swap out dairy and sugar and then I will let everyone taste everything and feel nourished! This year I want to take a trip for my 30th birthday. I am also coming out with my health book too, hopefully by the end of the month. I want to cook more with unusual spices, try new foods, do a couple raw cleanses and just keep moving forward! 

I loved 2014. It was a crazy ride. Good and bad. I had 2 or 3 detox fevers that kicked my ass. They lasted like 5 hours with wierd syptoms like rashes and stuff and then it was over. Who likes having a fever?! And there is no way I'm taking drugs when I purposely induced it. I've been going in the sauna almost every night to create a fever like state in my body, to release toxins and heal old health issues (like a pain I had in my foot. It's gone now!). I have years of partying to still sweat out still, I'm sure. I had so much fun with Kyri. Potty training, playing out doors and getting her in touch and loving nature. I was inspired to back to church and have loved every sermon. Whenever I'm questioning something or if something is bothering me, I always find that by going to church I always get my answer. Sometimes it's the pastor’s message and sometimes it's a message from a song. It's funny how the universe just works itself out that way. We went to a wedding, 3 or 4 family trips to Victoria, we starting biking as a family, and Seth finally found his athletic passion - cross fit! Chloe got a scholarship to a dance school, Kyri turned 1 and we got a pet fish. Tod beat his marathon time by 16 minutes! It was a pretty fun year. I probably made over 100 new recipes! Tod and I got our sauna last summer and started listening to Rich Roll podcasts while we get our sweat on. They inspired me to quit eating meat. It was my next step towards better health. I have decided to kick out dairy as well but keep eating free run organic eggs and unpasteurized & raw honey. I know they come from humane farms and they treat their animals with love.

I’m pretty sure I found this original recipe out of my mom’s Michael Smith Cookbook so props to him! I have modified it a bit to suit our family’s lifestyle.

This salad is pretty easy but does take a bit more patients then a type raw salad because of the cooking involved. The best tip I have read in a long time was to place my ginger root in the freezer in a freezer safe bag then grate it with a microplane grater while it’s frozen. Now it is a joy grating ginger!


Immune Boosting Warm Mushroom Spinach Salad

This salad is perfect for lunch. It has bell pepper, which is packed with Vitamin C and that will help your body absorb the iron from the spinach and pine nuts. There are omega 3’s, Vitamin E, and protein from the eggs and pine nuts contain oleic acid which helps lower “bad cholesterol”. Pine nuts also contain many needed minerals such as manganese, potassium, calcium, iron, magnesium, zinc and selenium. Mushrooms should always be slightly cooked because it helps remove the carcinogenic properties they contain. They are high in Vitamin D, calcium, and contain Beta-glucans, which help build the immune system and help fight off allergies. Way to go healthy salad!

Serves 2

  • 1/4 cup raw pine nuts, pumpkin seeds, or almonds, chopped
  • 2 large free run organic eggs
  • 3 mushrooms
  • 7 green beans
  • 1 tsp. Mrs. Dash Seasoning
  • 2 cups spinach
  • 4 pieces of lettuce
  • half a bell pepper (not green), diced
  • 2 green onions, diced


Dressing

  • 1 Tbsp. grated fresh ginger
  • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1 tsp. Braggs Liquid Aminos or Tamari (soy sauce alternative)
  • 1 Tbsp. raw sesame seeds
  • 1 tsp. yellow mustard
  • 3 Tbsp. cold pressed olive oil



1. Bring a small pot of water to a boil. Place eggs on a spoon and gently lower them into the pot of boiling water. Turn down to medium heat so it is at a low boil. Cook eggs for 15 minutes.

2. Add 1/4 cup of filtered water to a pan and heat on medium/low heat. Cut the tips off the green beans and slice the mushrooms and add to the pan and cook for 6 minutes, then flip for another 6 minutes. Sprinkle on 1 tsp. Mrs. Dash seasoning. Cook until tender.

3. Preheat oven to 350° F (175° C). Once oven is hot add your pine nuts (or chopped almonds or pumpkin seeds) to a cookie sheet and toast on the middle rack for 5-7 minutes until golden brown. Shake cookie sheet half way through toasting time. As soon as you smell them they are done.

4. Wash spinach and lettuce. Rip the lettuce into bit sized pieces and dry. Place greens into a large salad bowl, along with toasted pine nuts, diced bell pepper, and diced green onion. Serve salad onto two large plates.

5. After eggs have cooked gently drain the pot. Add cold water to the pot, covering the eggs, and let the eggs sit for 5 minutes in the cold water. This will make the peeling process easier. Peel the eggs and place them through an egg slicer or cut into thin strips and place on each salad.

6. Once mushroom and green beans are tender add them to the salad.


7. Blend the dressing ingredients and pour 1 Tbsp. over each salad and enjoy!

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