Malika’s Eat of The Week: Walnuts

Walnuts

I thought it was time to include nuts into my healthy Eat of The Week! I love nuts, my favourite nuts are almonds. That being said, most nuts are super healthy and should be included in your diet. I do want to mention that the quality of the nuts you consume is important. Look for nuts that are organic and raw, you don’t want to buy nuts that have been: irradiated, pasteurized, or coated in salt!

walnuts ariel shot

Walnuts have so many health benefits that I thought I should share them with you. They contain a number of neuroprotective compounds, including vitamin E, folate, melatonin, omega-3 fats, and antioxidants. Study’s show that walnut consumption may support brain health. One quarter cup of walnuts provides more than 100 percent of the daily recommended value of plant-based omega-3 fats, along with high amounts of copper and manganese! Amazing.  Studies show that walnuts may also help reduce the risk of prostate cancer and breast cancer. In one study, mice that ate the human equivalent of 2.4 ounces of whole walnuts for 18 weeks had significantly smaller and slower-growing prostate tumours. Walnuts also contain the amino acid l-arginine, which offers multiple vascular benefits to people with heart disease. Walnuts contain several powerful antioxidants that are found in very few foods. They also are a good source of protein and fibre.

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 I know that walnuts have sort of a bitter aftertaste, but if you include them in a healthy homemade trail mix you can reap the healthy benefits and help disguise the taste. I have found them much more enjoyable when I toss them into my favourite salad with a nice dressing. So what are you waiting for…..give them a try. 😉

xx Malika

By | Mar 28th, 2015|Eat of the week, Uncategorized|0 Comments

Malika’s Eat of The Week: Radishes

Radish love

 This week I chose radishes for my eat of the week, if you are not including these cuties in your diet now, hopefully you will be after I tell you how healthy they are. 😉 I must say that up until the last 6 months, I had never given radishes a second thought. I definitely didn’t eat them or have any idea how healthy they were. Radishes are a root vegetable that resembles beets or turnips in appearance and texture. They are not a mild or sweet vegetable though, I would describe their flavour as spicy and crunchy, with a little after bite . They are a part of the mustard family and can be eaten raw or cooked. I prefer them raw, I love using my vegetable spiralizer to make long ribbons out of them to add to salads.

Radishes have quite a few health benefits, for one they are a natural cleansing agent for the digestive system, helping you to break down and eliminate stagnant food and toxins built up in your body. They also contain vitamin C, phytonutrients, fiber, vitamins and minerals. Radishes are great for having a calming effect on the digestive system and can help relieve bloating and indigestion. 😉 They are also thought to eliminate toxins, Eastern and Ayurvedic healing practices use radishes for effective toxin-purging, they are believed to help break down and eliminate toxins and cancer-causing free radicals in your body.

Radish Ribbons

So if you don’t already love radishes, I hope you give these little red veggies another chance. I promise they will grow on you. They add a nice extra dimension to any salad.  The salad below is mixed greens, beets, radish, hemp seeds and pistachios. 🙂

xx Malika

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By | Mar 21st, 2015|Eat of the week, Uncategorized|0 Comments

Malika’s Eat of The Week: Dragon Fruit

dragon fruit

Happy Saturday! This week my eat of the week is Dragon Fruit! I know that this fruit doesn’t grow here in Canada so it is definitely not in season or local but it’s just so beautiful and sweet. 😉 The formal name for dragon fruit is pitaya, this fruit comes from a specific cactus plant which grows mostly in Asia and Central America. The tasty white meet is mild and sweet and reminds me a bit of a kiwi fruit.

This wonderful fruit is high in vitamin C and contains lots of dietary fibre. Dragon fruit also contains a small amount of healthy fat and protein, due to the consumption of their little black seeds. When you eat a fruit like a plum or a peach, you remove the seed (pit) and don’t get the same health benefits. Dragon fruit and kiwis are a few fruits that it is impossible to not eat the seeds, there are literally thousands of seeds in each dragon fruit.

sweet dragon fruit

There is also a high vitamin and mineral content in dragon fruit, ranging from Vitamin’s C, B1, B2, B3, as well as calcium, phosphorous, iron, protein, and niacin,  making it a great way to improve the functioning of your immune system. Your immune system starts in your digestive tract and dragon fruit are a great way to support a healthy GI tract. Getting the proper amount of vitamins and minerals in your diet helps prevent you from getting sick . As well, antioxidants (which dragon fruit is loaded with), can help fight off bacteria and viruses in your body. The 80% water content of dragon fruit will also help flush out stagnant toxins, which may help fight disease or illness. So if you havn’t tried this magical fruit yet, I think I just gave you enough reasons to give it a try. 😉

xx Malika

dragonfruit

By | Mar 14th, 2015|Eat of the week, Uncategorized|0 Comments

Shakshuka with Kale Chard and Feta

Shakshuka

Breakfast for dinner…..Yum! Shakshuka is popular for breakfast in Israel and is traditionally served with challah bread. It originated in North Africa, and like most great dishes there are as many versions as there are cooks who have embraced it. I have been seeing pictures of this dish all over social media lately and I knew I had to try making it. It was soooo delicious! I made it for dinner because it does take a good 30 min to make, but it’s well worth the wait. I just don’t always have a lot of extra time in the mornings. This recipe would be good for a weekend brunch. I go thru waves of loving eggs and avoiding eggs……. Right now I am defiantly loving them and I crave the extra protein because I have been working out a lot more. This dish is healthy and satisfying, perfect for a Meatless Monday! 😉

xx Malika

Breakfast for dinner

Pan of Shakshuka

Shakshuka with Kale Chard and Feta
Author: 
Cuisine: Vegetarian, Gluten Free
Serves: 2
 
Ingredients
  • 4 organic eggs
  • 1 can diced tomatoes
  • 1 clove of garlic crushed
  • 1 small yellow onion, finely chopped
  • ½ yellow pepper, chopped
  • 3 tbs tomato paste
  • ½ tsp dried basil
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • handful of greens (I used a mix of spinach, chard and baby kale)
  • 2 oz sheep's milk feta
  • 1 tbs olive oil
  • slat and pepper to taste
  • 1 tbs coconut sugar
Instructions
  1. In a large skillet heat the olive oil over medium heat
  2. Add the onions and sauté until translucent about 5 minutes.
  3. Add the peppers and cook just until softened, 3 minutes. Stir in the garlic, spices and tomato paste and sauté for another 2 minutes.
  4. Add in the tomatoes. Stir sugar, salt and pepper and let the mixture simmer for 10 minutes. Lyer the greens over the top.
  5. Crack the eggs into the tomato mixture. Cover and simmer for approximately 8-10 minutes or until the whites of the eggs are no longer translucent.
  6. Sprinkle over the feta cheese.
  7. Serve over cooked quinoa and garnish with avocado slices

Quinoa, eggs and Shakshuka

By | Mar 10th, 2015|Breakfast, Uncategorized|0 Comments

Malika’s Eat of The Week: Hemp Seeds

Hemp seeds love

This week I chose hemp seeds as my eat of the week. Have you tried these superfood seeds yet?! If not, I highly recommend them. There is some confusion with people who don’t know that there is a hug difference between hemp seeds and marijuana.  Hemp and marijuana come from the same plant but from different varieties. Eating the seeds from hemp plants will not make you feel high, where as smoking the bud flowers from the cannabis variety will.

Hemp seeds

There are quite a few health reasons to include this super seed into your diet. They are high in protein and are one of the most easily digestible plant forms of protein. They may help plower cholesterol, boost immunity and increaser your metabolic rate. They are also know to help speed up muscle recovery after a workout and reduce symptoms of PMS. Hemp is also a complete source of amino acids and essential fatty acids, with over 80% EFAs. They contains all 21 amino acids including 9 essential amino acids! These little seeds have a nice nutty flavour, you can throw them on top of any salad or meal to boost your nutrient intake. 🙂 Here is a recipe for hemp seed salad dressing.   Go out a get your self some hemp seeds today!

xx Malika

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By | Mar 8th, 2015|Eat of the week, Uncategorized|0 Comments

Natural Beauty Remedies

natural Beauty remedies

What is your beauty regimine? Mine is and always will be pretty low key. I am not one to wash my face every night and use a bunch of different products like face washes and exfoliators. I can barley remember to take off my makeup at night……..! I do however have to battle the same beauty issues as most women. Sometimes me teeth need a little whitening, my skin needs a little exfoliating and my hair needs a little damage repair. 😉 Over the years I have come across some pretty crazy claims made by cosmetic companies and marketers. The beauty tips I am about to  give you will not change your life or your face but they will help a little in the area you are wanting to fix. If they don’t work for you, can just put the ingredient back in your kitchen. 😉

This first beauty remedy I love, whiting your teeth with banana peels! So easy and so simple. I used to go out and spend lots of money on those bleach whitening trays. I don’t like the fact that they contain nasty chemicals that end up being swallowed…..GROSS! Now that I know better I will stick to baking soda and banana peels. First dry your teeth, then take a piece of banana peel and rub the inside skin on all of your teeth. Let it sit on your teeth for 10 minutes, then brush it off. For best results, repeat this 7-10 times. I definitely noticed that my teeth were whiter after just the first few times. 🙂

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The second beauty remedy is for black heads. I hate the little blackheads that appear on my nose. Honey can help, it acts as a natural antibiotic that helps to pull out the dirt from your pores by clearing the blackheads! 🙂  It also hydrates and tightens the skin pores for a clearer complexion. Honey is also know to be great for nourishing and moisturizing your skin to get a natural shine. Just put some honey on your “problem” area of your face, let sit for 15 minutes, then wash off.

Last but not least, lets talk about dry damaged hair. I defiantly suffer form this problem, after lots of bleach, hot styling tools and chlorinated pools my hair definitely needs some extra TLC. You can go to any hair salon and spend a fortune on expensive hair masks and hair oils or you can go to your panty and grab the coconut oil. To apply the coconut oil, melt 3-5 tbs and then work through your hair form root to tip, combing thru evenly. Leave it on your hair overnight and wash it out in the morning with shampoo! Some benefits for using coconut oil on your hair are:  stimulating hair growth, preventing dandruff,  moisturizes dry hair, adds luster, shine and softness hair, prevents hair breakage and split ends, slows down hair loss. 🙂

natural beauty products

I also have some natural beauty products that contain these ingredients in my bathroom.  I love my sugar and coconut body scrub. My green tea face mask is organic and contains raw honey and bee pollen. My coconut milk hair serum has coconut oil, coconut milk and egg whites to help stop hair breakage. I hope one or all of these natural beauty remedies works for you! Have a great weekend.

xx Malika

By | Mar 8th, 2015|Life, Lifestyle, Uncategorized|0 Comments

malika’s eat of the week: Microgreens

Microgreens in bowl

 This weeks eat of the week pick is one of my favourite super foods! What are microgreens? Microgreens are the immature edible leaves and stems of herbs and vegetable seeds. The most common seeds used for micro greens are: kale, arugula, beet greens, onions, radish greens, watercress, chard, bok choy, cilantro, basil, chervil, parsley and chives. Microgreens taste even stronger then their counterpart herb or vegetable. If you are wondering what the difference is between sprouts and micro greens, sprouts are seeds that are germinated in water and harvested after 4-6 days and you eat the stem as well as the seed. Microgreens are grown in soil and are usually harvested at 1-2 weeks of maturity, you only cosume the stem, not the seed.

microgreens

These cute little superfood plants are full of vitamins and minerals and can have from 4 to 40 times the nutritional content of their plant’s mature counterpart. Scientists researched microgreens to see just how much more nutrients they have and here are the findings: cilantro showed 3 times more beta-carotene and red cabbage showed almost 40 times greater vitamin E and 6 times more vitamin C. Each type of microgreen has its own health benefits, dark green leafy vegetables such as kale and chard when eaten as microgreens are high in lutein and zeaxanthin.  If you haven’t discovered micro greens yet, I would highly recommend them, you can find them at most health food stores. You can add them to your salads or put them on top of any meal. I personally like them on top of my fried eggs.

xx Malika

Millet Salad

By | Mar 1st, 2015|Eat of the week, Uncategorized|0 Comments

Healthy Energy Bar Recipe: From Real Energy Foods Blog

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Todays Blog post recipe is from my drear friend Karen who blogs over at Real Energy Food. She is an enthusiastic athlete who loves enjoying outdoor sports like mountain biking and snowboarding. Karen knows that when your are out on the mountain all day, you need food to fuel your energy. Her blog has tons of great healthy recipes to get your refuelled and full of healthy protein. Go check out her blog!

A little intro about this recipe from Karen: 

This vegan energy bar recipe is a great one for those who have nut allergies, want something they can include in kids lunch boxes or are just looking at avoiding nuts. Pumpkin seed butter is an awesome nut butter alternative as it tastes great and has lots of health benefits. Pumpkin seeds contain magnesium which is important for a healthy heart, zinc which helps boost your immune system, omega 3 fatty acids and have been found to exhibit anti-inflammatory effects. This recipe can however been made with a peanut butter or almond butter if that’s what you have on hand, and the agave nectar can be easily substituted for honey if you prefer. I used rolled oats however quinoa flakes also work really well or you can also use almond meal or coconut flour if you want to make this one gluten free. Hope you enjoy!

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Healthy Energy Bar Recipe: From Real Energy Foods Blog
Author: 
Cuisine: Vegan
Serves: 4
 
Ingredients
  • 50g rolled oats
  • 90g medjool dates
  • 10g unsweetened dessicated coconut
  • 25g dried pineapple
  • 25g dried mango
  • 25g pumpkin seed butter
  • 10g agave nectar
Instructions
  1. Add all the ingredients together into a food processor.
  2. Blend the ingredients until they are all well mixed.
  3. Take the mixture and split into four portions.
  4. Shape into bars and put into the fridge to set for about 20 minutes.
  5. Take out and Enjoy!
  6. That's all there is to it. Super easy to make!

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Logo with Choc Protein Bar

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Karen Wojciechowski is a keen runner, mountain biker, snowboarder and outdoor enthusiast, Karen started RealEnergyFood.com to share what she has learnt about creating healthy energy food on the go 🙂 Passionate about health and fitness, if she is not enjoying being outdoors she is happiest in her kitchen making delicious but healthy homemade sports supplements. With a bachelor’s degree in science and currently training at the Institute of Integrative Nutrition she loves researching the best ingredients for awesome recipes to get you performing at your optimal level. Find out more on FacebookTwitterInstagram or Pinterest.


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By | Feb 26th, 2015|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Malika’s Eat of the Week: Cauliflower

Purple cauliflower 2

Do you like cauliflower? As a kid I can defiantly say that I was not a big fan of this vegetable. Cauliflower is a member of the cruciferous family of vegetables, it contains an impressive array of nutrients, including vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and other phytochemicals. There are so many ways to prepare it, if you think you don’t like cauliflower try cooking it in a new way, it might surprise you. I tried making “caulifriedrice” a few years ago and it was delicious. It’s super easy to make, just grate the cauliflower,  sauté it in a pan with butter and garlic and season with herbs. The texture and flavour is amazing. 🙂

Studies have shown that this little veggie has lots of health benefits, like fighting cancer! Cauliflower contains sulforaphane, a compound that has been shown to kill cancer stem cells and slow tumour growth. It can also help your heart health, sulforaphane in cauliflower has been found to significantly improve blood pressure and kidney function. Cauliflower is also anti-inflammatory, it contains anti-inflammatory nutrients to help keep inflammation in check, including indole-3-carbinol or I3C, an anti-inflammatory compound that can help prevent the inflammatory responses in your body.  Cauliflower is also a great source for dietary fibre, which we could all use a little extra of…..right?! 😉

I usually I buy white cauliflower but this purple variety looked so pretty I decided to give it a try. Both varieties have similar nutritional value, however, purple cauliflower has a few extra nutritional benefits. The purple colour is due to the presence of flavonoid compounds, which can help to regulate your blood lipid sugar levels and body weight, as well as help to lower your cancer risk. Additionally, purple cauliflower contains a compound called glucoraphanin, which is also found in broccoli. In your body, glucoraphanin is converted to compounds with anticancer properties! So if you are not already a cauliflower fan, I recommend you give this veggie and second chance. I will post a cauliflower recipe tomorrow.

xx Malika

cauliflower

By | Feb 21st, 2015|Eat of the week, Uncategorized|0 Comments

DIY Framed Message Board, with Guest Blogger Katherine

DIY Message Board

I love decorating and making DIY projects I find on Pinterest! These days I just haven’t been finding the time to do much of either,  I spend most of my free  time playing in the kitchen. 😉 I thought it would be great to have to have a guest blogger share something other then a recipe. Katherine blogs over at The Pampered Baby, she is somewhat of a super mom! On her blog she shares everything from healthy baby products to recipes , money tips and DIY projects. It’s a space for moms to share their thoughts on parenting, life and everything in between. 🙂 I was thrilled when Katherine wanted to share this DIY message board project with my readers.

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DIY Framed Message Board

I love a unique way to display photos and finding cute ways to stay organized. Making your own framed cork board is a pretty way to display photos or help you keep all of your random papers and reminders in one place (these are also a great décor idea for weddings, baby showers, etc.). Clutter free and cute? Sounds good to me! All you need are a few items you’ve probably already got on hand and maybe a trip to the dollar store and you’re set! Skip the premade store bought options & make your own as a fun DIY project for a fraction of the cost (mine cost a grand total of $10!).

Materials:

  • corkboard *
  • chalk paint
  • picture frame ($2, garage sale)
  • glue gun
  • tacks/ push pint
  • rhinestones ($2, dollar store)
  • fabric (optional)
  • ribbon (optional)

* I made my own cork board so I could customize the size to fit an existing frame I already had by gluing 2 pieces of foam core board together topped with a sheet of cork (all picked up at the dollar store for a total of $6). You can also buy one from a big box/ office supply store & cut it to size with a saw.

Directions:

  1. Start by painting your frame; I love chalk paint because it doesn’t require priming or special prep and dries fast. Simply paint on 1 -2 coats to reach your desired coverage. Old vintage frames look especially beautiful when updated with a fresh coat of paint.
  2. Measure the inside back of your frame & reduce it by an 1/8 of an inch to allow a little wiggle room for the cork board & cut your cork board to size.
  3. If you’d like to glam up the look of the cork, you can paint or cover it with a durable fabric (don’t use something too thin or delicate). Use mod podge or a glue gun to affix the fabric to the cork board.
  4. Run glue around the inside back of the frame and insert your cork board; press and hold for about 10 seconds until the glue sets. Flip over and remove any strands of glue.
  5. Glue rhinestones to tacks/ push pins for a decorative touch.
  6. Depending on the frame you use, you may have to find a creative way to attach it to your wall. A cute way to hang your cork board is to hot glue a piece of ribbon to the back of the frame. You could also attach hanging hardware on the back & hang from a hook in the wall. These are also cute propped on a table as part of a vignette.

There are so many ways you can use one of these and would be especially cute in a kid’s room to display photos & artwork (I’m making a similar one for my daughter’s room). Finding creative ways to organize and decorate can lead you to tackle some fun projects and save money; plus a DIY project is a great thing to do with a friend or your kids. I hope you enjoy!

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 A big THANK YOU to Katherine for sharing this great DIY Project with us! 

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Katherine Petrunia is the founder of  The Pampered Baby, a Vancouver lifestyle blog focused on moms & families featuring recipes, DIY, event info, and more. She loves sharing all aspects of family life with her readers with a special focus on leading natural, healthy lives and is a passionate advocate for buying local. You can check out the blog here and find it on FacebookTwitter & Instagram.

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By | Feb 17th, 2015|Life, Uncategorized|0 Comments