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Rooted Nutrition Healthy Recipes and Holistic Nutrition and Lifestyle Articles

By Andrea Potter 12 Jan, 2017

Apple Pie Granola

Makes about 2 Liters, or 8 cups

Store-bought granola is marketed to seem healthier than boxed cereal, but it is usually just as ridden with sugar! Those tasty clusters are so tasty; the bad news is that they are mostly crystallized sugar.

Save yourself from the blood-sugar roller coaster by making this tasty cereal from scratch instead! The high proportion of nuts and seeds (half the bulk of the recipe!) gives you lots of protein and good fats to get your day started right. And enough whole grain to keep you feeling full till lunch.

 

Ingredients

4 cups slow-cooking rolled oats

1 cup cashews or almonds (whole, raw or sprouted)

1 cup seed of your choice (I like pumpkin seeds)

1 cup dried, unsweetened coconut

1 pinch salt

 

Spices

1 Tbsp cinnamon

1 tsp nutmeg

1 tsp cloves

(Or substitute 1.5 Tbsp apple pie spice if you have it)

 

In Blender

¼ cup chia or ground flax seed

½  cup honey, maple syrup or coconut nectar

2 cups unsweetened apple sauce OR just core, chop and blend 3 apples in the blender for ‘lazy’ raw apple sauce!

1 Tbsp vanilla

3 Tbsp coconut oil, melted

1 cup dried raisins (optional) or un-sulphured dried apple pieces

 

Directions

In a blender, combine chia or flax with apple sauce (or raw apple pieces if doing the ‘lazy’ version), sweetener, melted coconut oil and vanilla in blender until smooth.

In a mixing bowl, combine oats, spices, salt, nuts/seeds. Add with blended mixture to the dry mixture and stir well to combine. This part is important because once the flax or chia gets moist from being mixed into the blender mix; it starts to thicken, giving you nice clusters!

Spread mixture evenly and not too thick onto 2 parchment paper-lined baking sheets and bake at 320F, checking and stirring regularly. This takes about 1-2 hours, or just until it is dry to the touch.

Store it

Stir in dried fruit, cool and store in ziplock bags or airtight containers.

Keeps for at least a month.

Eat it

Enjoy with milk or alternative, on yogurt, over stewed fruit, eating out of hand, make granola bars or add a crunchy sprinkle  to ice cream etc.

 

By Andrea Potter 31 Dec, 2016

 

       Tell us a bit about yourself.

I am a plant-based baker. I was trained in Bread and Pastry Arts at North West Culinary Academy of Vancouver and after working in chocolate, catering and restaurants, I found my happy place as a baking instructor. If I was stranded on a desert island and could only choose 3 foods it would be beer, bread and chocolate. If I could only choose two, it would be beer and bread and if I could only choose one food, it would be sourdough bread!

      What inspired you to teach healthy cooking/baking?

When I was training in pastry, I became more and more aware of the need for baked goods that did not rely on highly refined products (i.e. white flour and white sugar), wheat, eggs and dairy products. I get a lot of satisfaction from helping people and so I wanted to create and share recipes for great baked goods that were friendlier to people’s specific diets, allergies and or ethics. I also gain so much from others experience and knowledge so teaching lets me create, share and learn all at the same time!

       What do you love most about healthy cooking/baking?

Plant-based baking is a very creative process for me. I get a lot out of the process of testing, failing and eventually problem solving baked goods that match our sensory memories (such as a brownie or ice cream). I also grow my own veggies so getting to use them in my baking is really satisfying! Most of all, I love sharing treats with others and seeing them experience joy at being able to eat them.

       How does learning to use whole and plant-based foods benefit you and those who you teach?

In addition to helping people find foods and recipes that they can reintroduce into their diets that suit them, I think it provides connection, inspires confidence in people and pleasure in cooking and baking. It also enhances the quality of our nutrition by integrating new and more plant based foods into our diets.

       What makes your cooking/baking classes different from the norm?

I strongly believe that great plant based baking is a combination of good technique and the right ingredients. So I really try to make baking methods approachable, low tech, and accessible to students so that they can gain confidence and have fun in learning new recipes and new skills without feeling intimidated. I also have no expectation that people who are in my class are plant based. There is no expectation that you need to change any of your practices or eliminate anything from your current diet. It’s simply about learning new things and having fun no matter where you are at in your food journey.

       What was your favourite experience cooking/baking healthy?

Getting to work with Andrea Potter who inspires me to be a better teacher and baker and seeing folks who had previously given up on sweets being able to integrate them into their diets again!

       How has healthy cooking/baking enhanced your life and the lives' of your students?

Honestly, it has helped me to find my place in the world! Working in this area of baking/food is very meaningful to me and keeps me learning all of the time: from my own mistakes, from my students, from the continuing sophistication of ingredients and methods. I see it enhance the lives of students when they tell me how they are able to eat the foods that bring them joy and gain confidence in their own cooking so that they share it with others.

       Any advice for students thinking of getting into healthy cooking/baking?

Our classes are really approachable and we are open minded so just give it a try. We’re here to offer you plant based options and then you then can decide for yourself what you want to try and integrate! No fancy equipment needed. Oh, and it’s delicious!


By Andrea Potter 01 Nov, 2016

Recipe by our RHN, Jenn Rapske

 This recipe checks all the boxes!

  • Quick
  • Gluten-Free
  • Naturally sweet with maple- no refined sugars!
  • CHOCOLATE!

Ingredients:

·        1 can full-fat coconut milk (no substitutions)

·        ½ cup unsweetened cacao powder, sifted

·        ½ cup pure maple syrup (less if desired)

·        ⅛ teaspoon coarse sea salt

·        ½ teaspoon vanilla bean powder or cinnamon

Instructions:

1.    Whisk together the coconut milk, cacao powder, maple syrup, and salt in a medium saucepan.

2.    Bring ingredients to a boil over medium heat, then turn the heat down and simmer 15 minutes while whisking frequently. The mixture will begin to thicken slightly.

3.    Turn off heat and whisk in vanilla/cinnamon.

4.    Cool to room temperature on the counter.

5.    Transfer to an airtight container or single serve containers (I like mini mason jars or ramekins).

6.    Refrigerate for a few hours.

7.    Serve chilled and garnish with your favorite ingredients—berries, nuts, coconut flakes, etc.

By Andrea Potter 31 Oct, 2016

As the weather cools down, these soft cookies are the perfect excuse to turn the oven on. Naturally sweetened with bananas and maple syrup, these sweet treats not only taste good, they are good! They are free from gluten, eggs and dairy. This makes a ‘mookie’; a muffin-top style of cookie. They are best eaten fresh out of the oven, but are also enjoyed a day or 2 later if warmed up slightly.

           

Makes 24 small cookies.

 

Ingredients

 

Wet

2 bananas, mashed

1 tsp vanilla extract

Note: Although free of gluten, many oats are contaminated with gluten in processing. Buy GF oats if this is a need for you.

 

¼ cup pitted dates, soaked in water for a few minutes to soften

¼ cup maple syrup (Note- darker maple syrup has more minerals, so opt for #2 or #3 syrup. Bonus - it is often cheaper than the lighter stuff.)

½ cup unrefined sunflower oil or melted coconut oil

3 tsp rice or coconut milk (Or other milk alternative)

 

Dry

1 cup brown rice flour

1 tsp baking soda

pinch salt

1 tsp cinnamon

1 tsp ground cardamom

1 cup slow-cooking rolled oats (g/f if celiac)

1 cup unsweetened shredded coconut

 

Directions

 

Preheat oven to 350F

In food processor or blender (or by hand using a whisk and some elbow grease), blend together first list of ingredients (wet).

In a separate bowl, combine flour, spices, baking soda and salt.

Add the wet to the dry and stir to combine.

Now add coconut and oats and stir.

Drop tablespoon-sized portions onto a greased cookie sheet.

Bake for 15-20 minutes, until bottoms are slightly browned.

By Andrea Potter 31 Oct, 2016

Befriending Bacteria for Immune, Gut and Brain Health

We are finding that the one key factor in health and longevity is in us, and all around us- we just need to give it what it needs to thrive! Gut health is a hot topic in many areas of health and healing. Gut microbiome is has been known to be a huge influencing factor into healing digestive inflammation, irritation and disease. It is also being linked to other areas of health, including maintaining a healthy weight, proper immune functioning, clearing persistent skin problems and even to psychological wellbeing.

What is gut health? Gut health begins at birth; our internal ecosystems are established based on our mother’s own populations of bacteria and other micro-organisms. We can grow more and different strains of helpful bacteria in life through diet. This ecosystem is called our ‘biome’, which houses our micro-flora. We are made up of trillions of bacteria and yeasts that support us in nearly every biological function. Bacterial cells actually out-number human cells in our bodies by 10-1!

We eat far fewer bacteria than our ancestors, and we are worse off for it.

If you look at your great-grandparent’s diets, most all of them would contain a number of naturally bacteria-rich foods and drinks. Bacterial fermentation of food is an ancient method of preserving foods, so before refrigeration people from every culture ate a wider variety of fermented foods.  Another big difference within the past 3-4 generations is our exposure to bacteria from soil, animals and other people. Our obsession with ‘clean’ and the war on germs that we have waged has tilted the scale to actually be a detriment to us. Kids who are allowed to play in soil, with animals and with other kids develop stronger immune systems by incorporating more strains of beneficial organisms in their bodies. Up to 80% of our immune systems actually lives in our guts. Not to mention that the bacterial diversity in the soil has decreased due to modern agricultural practices, resulting in fewer strains of bacteria in food to begin with.

Who needs better gut health?

·        We all do! But key times of growth, life transitions and stress as well as illness call for more attention to be brought to finding enough ‘good bugs’ to support our health.

·        Expectant mothers to provide the probiotics that will largely support their children’s immune systems.

·        Kids- enhancing immunity and reducing the chances of acquiring allergies through life.

·        People who suffer from inflammatory and autoimmune conditions, people who are affected by many different gut health issues and people who are recovering from antibiotic use.

 

Signs, symptoms and health issues resulting from an imbalance of good gut bacteria:

An imbalance of the microbiome can manifest in many different ways, depending on the nature of the imbalance and on an individual’s biological predisposition towards certain imbalances.

The balance of the biome is essential to the health of our digestion of course, as most of this system is in our intestines. But the functions don’t stop directly at digestion. An unhealthy gut is linked to psychological problems including depression and anxiety, to persistent skin problems like eczema, to chronic obesity and even to auto-immune disorders and allergies.

Signs that one should look into incorporating more gut-friendly bacteria in their diets (and supplements) are:

·        Leaky gut/candida

·        Allergies

·        Low immunity

·        Gut inflammatory conditions like Crohne’s colitis and IBS

·        Autoimmune conditions

·        Depression and anxiety

·        Chronic skin conditions that are treated by ongoing antibiotics

 

'Good Bug' Foods to promote gut health

Some examples of bacteria-rich foods are traditionally made (unpasteurized) sauerkraut, kimchi, and various brined pickles like traditional kosher pickles as well as many kinds of Indian pickled condiments, yogurt, and kefir. Even the earliest forms of mustard, ketchup and relish were fermented (before being taken over by big food companies). Most traditional dinner tables would have had at least one fermented, probiotic-rich food.

You can drink your bacteria too! Beverages such as kombucha tea and water kefir (fermented by a Symbiotic Culture of Bacteria and Yeast, or SCOBY), traditionally soured drinks like kvass from Eastern Europe and even some country-style, homemade soured beers are teeming with live enzymes and bacteria, benefiting digestion and helping to lay down a foundation of communities of organisms that we become populated with in order to maintain balance. I suggest getting probiotics first through foods because residual sugars and potential alcohol from some of the beverages can out-weigh the benefits. The beverages can be functional, but I don’t suggest relying on them for all of your probiotic needs. Variety is key!

 

What to look for when buying or making probiotic foods: Look for products that do not contain vinegar and are in the refrigerated section (or recipes that are fermented and not heated after fermentation). They should be labeled ‘unpasteurized’ or ‘raw’ and are often labeled ‘live culture’. Products like yogurt may have actual bacterial names and amounts on the label. Other products may not, but may say ‘live’ or ‘live culture’.

Just like good hosts, we need to feed these good bacteria we are inviting in through our diets! A diet rich in prebiotic foods is important. Prebiotics are indigestible fiber that feed probiotic bacteria. A diet rich in wholesome foods provides enough prebiotics to keep a gut healthy. Some sources of prebiotics are: onions, leeks, dandelion root, apples, sunchokes and asparagus. A varied diet with lots of whole, raw and cooked vegetables and fruits is usually enough to supply the probiotics we need.

How to incorporate more probiotic foods into everyday diet:

Aim for 2+Tbsp of some fermented probiotic food with each meal.  

·        Yogurt/kefir in smoothie

·        Add sauerkraut to salads and as a garnish for soups

·        Kimchi on eggs in the morning

·        Brined pickled carrots or other fermented vegetable pickles for snack

How do you incorporate the good 'bugs' into your diet?

 

 

By Andrea Potter 17 Aug, 2016

Recipe by Ellexis Boyle for Rooted Nutrition

 Low sugar, GF option, dairy-free

 

If your neighbour’s are anything like mine, you will have been inundated by apples, pears and prune plums this past month! This simple fruit crumble takes minutes to prepare, is low in sugar and keeps the integrity of the healthy and delicious fruit intact! Coconut sugar is chosen for its low GI and cinnamon adds a hint of sweetness as well as helps to control blood sugar levels.

Yield: one 8 X 8” baking dish or one 8-9” Pyrex pie dish

 

Fruit

5 cups of chopped fruit, leave skin on. Chop apples and pears, rhubarb and peaches/nectarines into bite-sized chunks. Halve and pit apricots and plums, leave berries whole.

1-2 Tbsp of coconut sugar

1 Tbsp of arrowroot (a less-processed alternative to cornstarch for thickening)

½ tsp cinnamon

Zest and juice of ½ lemon

 

Tasty Fruit Combinations  

Apples, straight-up!

Apple + Pear

4 cups Apples + 1 cup Berries or Rhubarb

Apples+ halved Plums or Apricots

Peaches + Cherries (increase arrowroot to 2 Tbsp if using moist fruit like these)


Crumble topping

½ cup slow-cooking rolled oats* (Oats are not necessarily Celiac- Friendly! See GF sub in note below)

½ cup spelt flour*, sprouted flour is best if you can find it. (See GF sub tip below if gluten is not an option)

1/3 cup shredded coconut

2 Tbsp maple syrup

2 Tbsp unrefined grapeseed oil (or use avocado oil or melted coconut oil)

½ tsp cinnamon

¼ tsp sea salt


*Make mine Gluten-Free Please!

While spelt flour is an option for some people who have a wheat intolerance, there are those who require gluten – free.

Swap out the whole amount of spelt flour for millet flour or brown rice flour, or a mix of the two. For people with Celiac disease, I don’t recommend (even GF) oats. Sub out the rolled oats for additional coconut (a heaping 3/4 cup total coconut)


Method:

1.    Preheat oven to 350F and lightly grease your baking dish with coconut or grapeseed oil.

2.    Wash fruit and dice into 1/2” cubes. If fruit is from your neighbour’s (un-sprayed) tree, leave skin on. Just remove any bruises or blemishes.

3.    Toss chopped fruit with sugar, arrowroot, cinnamon, lemon juice and zest. Pour into your chosen greased, baking dish.

4.    Make crumble topping by combining oats, flour, sugar, salt and coconut in a bowl and then rubbing in the maple syrup and oil with your hands until well coated and clumpy like granola.

5.    Spread crumble topping evenly over the fruit

6.    Bake in a 350F oven for 30-40 min. Crumble is ready when the topping is golden and you can pierce the fruit easily with a knife.


By Andrea Potter 02 Aug, 2016
By Jenn Rapske, RHN , Nutrition Consultant

Basil: The Queen of Summer Herbs


Fresh local basil is so fragrant and delicious in the heat of summer. When I see bundles of basil

at the market I cannot resist the temptation. I usually end up with a bunch in my bag even if I haven’t

planned it into my weekly menu. The other day while shopping at the Kits Farmer’s Market, I was able to

get two handfuls of basil for $8. I thought to myself ‘$8 isn’t bad’…but when the farmer told me to

literally reach into an overflowing basket of fresh basil and grab as much as I could hold with one hand,

and then do it again…I felt like I was stealing! What a wonderful shopping experience; first of all, I love

this informal measurement and second, what an incredible deal! This would never happen at the

grocery store that’s for sure. When I got my bounty home, washed, and dried, I had well over eight cups

of organic basil leaves for my pesto.

The Benefits of Basil

Why buy it? – Basil is grown locally in B.C. and is abundant in the summer months. Purchasing

local seasonal produce allows us to stay connected to our geography and climate, and allows us to enjoy

the freshest most nutritious foods. It also adds variety and a burst of flavor to our weekly meal plan.

Not only is Basil  full of antioxidant flavonoids (health promoting superstars), but also it is known to

have powerful antibiotic and anti-inflammatory properties. Oh and did I mention it’s delicious?

How to buy it – Be sure to choose basil with crisp vibrant green leaves. Avoid anything with a

yellow tinge or brown spots as this is an indicator that it is on its way out (i.e. not fresh). And of course,

choose organic whenever possible to avoid pesticides and chemicals.

How to use it – I love to toss basil leaves in everything from my sparkling water, to salads,

lettuce and rice wraps, soups, curries, much more. Perhaps one of my favorite ways to enjoy this

abundant summer herb is by making pesto. If you find yourself with an overabundance of this lovely

herb, you can freeze chopped basil in ice cube trays covered with water, stock, or oil which can be easily

be added to soups, curries, and stir-fries at a moments’ notice.

Basil Pesto

Most store bought pesto contains preservatives and “extras” that our body doesn’t need, or like

for that matter. I also find that the taste of store bought varieties lack the bright fresh notes of a

homemade sauce. Pesto is traditionally made from basil, pine nuts, hard cheese, garlic, and oil. I have

given you a basic traditional recipe below, but feel free to experiment with other herbs or greens,

and/or nuts to make a pesto that suits your style. You can also omit the cheese altogether if you don't do dairy and substitute an equal portion of nutritional yeast instead.

I usually triple this recipe and freeze the remainder in ice cube trays or small jars so that I can

enjoy this delicious sauce all year long. It also lasts up to five days in the fridge when stored in an air-

tight container covered with olive oil to prevent browning.

Basil Pesto Recipe

  • 2 cups basil leaves (stems can be bitter)
  • ¼-½ cup hard cheese, grated (Parmesan, Romano, Pecorino, etc.)
  • Juice of 1 lemon (plus optional zest)
  • 1 or more cloves of garlic, crushed or roughly chopped
  • 1/4 cup pine nuts (sub hemp hearts if you like)
  • 1/2 cup good olive oil (extra-virgin, cold-pressed, preferably organic)
  • Pinch of salt

Put basil, grated cheese, pine nuts, garlic, lemon juice and a pinch of salt in a blender or food processor. Pulse a few

times to break down ingredients and be sure to scrape down the sides as you go along. Add some of the

oil and pulse some more. While the blender/food processor is on low speed, slowly add the remainder

of the oil until the pesto is smooth and to desired consistency. Check seasoning and adjust if needed.

Now What?
Ideas and Inspiration


Enliven weeknight staple meals! Pesto can be enjoyed in a variety of ways:
 A match made in heaven – pesto and pasta.

 Add to a vegetable frittata or omelette for a burst of fresh flavor.

 Mix into cold cooked potatoes for a spin on potato salad.

 Drizzle over cooked fish and/or chicken.

 Smother over your favorite crackers or crusty bread and top with Burrata and an heirloom

 Add a dollop to warm soups and stews as a garnish.

 Add to your favorite “mash” (i.e. potatoes, cauliflower, and/or beans) to mix things up.

 Mix into your favorite creamy dips.

 Incorporate into salad dressing for lettuce and grain based salads.

 And much, MUCH, more…
By Andrea Potter 14 Jul, 2016

Recipe by Jenn Rapske , RHN

 

Makes 8 side servings or 4 big lunch bowls

 

Let’s Get Seasonal!

In the summer, one of my favorite salads to make is a Mediterranean Quinoa Salad. Not only is it packed with seasonal summer favorites like crunchy cucumbers and juicy tomatoes, but also it contains a ton of nutrient dense goodies like artichokes, olives, and parsley. I love this salad because it is fresh and versatile. It is a great “grab and go” meal and an all-star when it comes to potlucks and picnics. Next time quinoa makes an appearance in your meal prep rotation, make a little extra so that you can throw together this simple dish the following day.

 

Versatility is Key:

This salad can transition into a number of meals that taste and look different, to help avoid the dreaded “dinner déjà vu”. For example, this salad is great on its own as a light lunch; make extra dressing and marinade some skewered meats to pair with the salad for a more substantial dinner; then, use your leftover skewers and salad as a flatbread filling along with freshly shredded lettuce and tzatziki. Yum!

 

Switching it up (Never getting bored!):

Grain salads in general, are perhaps one of the easiest meals to prepare and repurpose. So let your imagination run wild! If you are stumped for ideas, ask your kids or a friend, as they are sure to come up with something different. If you find another clever way to enjoy this salad, be sure to tell me about it at jenn@rootednutrition.ca .

 

 

Salad Ingredients

 

·        3 cups cooked quinoa, cold (1 cup dry quinoa, soaked or rinsed well, cooked in a covered pot with 2 cups of water.)

·        1 cup diced cucumber

·        1 cup diced tomato

·        1 cup diced green pepper

·        1 cup diced red onion

·        ½ cup roughly minced parsley

·        1 can of water-packed artichokes hearts, sliced

·        ½ cup olives of choice, halved or sliced

·        ½ cup crumbled Feta

 

Salad Dressing

 

·        1/3 cup lemon juice

·        2/3 cup olive oil

·        1.5 tsp. dried oregano (or a heaping tablespoon of fresh, chopped oregano)

·        Unrefined salt and freshly cracked black pepper to taste

·        Optional – 1 clove garlic, grated

 

*Combine all ingredients in a mason jar with lid and shake well to combine.

 

 

Directions

 

·        Dice the ingredients into bite sized pieces.

·        Then combine the vegetables and quinoa in a large bowl and gently mix by hand.

·        Make dressing and add enough dressing to lightly coat the salad before serving. * Be sure to taste as you go along!

·        To allow the ingredients to stay fresh and crunchy, only dress what you are going to eat and store the remainder of the salad in an airtight glass container.  


By Andrea Potter 04 Jul, 2016

Make breakfast for a week all at once?! Now there is no excuse for skipping this all-important meal!

This healthy ‘all in one’ breakfast is made in a big batch ahead of time. It is basically oatmeal that you don’t have to cook at all and is eaten chilled. This is the most convenient whole food breakfast, and the added bonus? No added sugar! The cinnamon helps balance blood sugar too, keeping you on an even keel, and even preventing sugar cravings later in the day.  This recipe is customizable, so you can choose your favourite flavour combination by adding different dried fruits, nuts and seeds.

I divide this recipe into 6 500ml (pint) mason jars for quick breakfast that I can take with me.

Fun fermentation fact:

This recipe is fermented using the good bacteria in yogurt (or kefir, or coconut yogurt). By fermenting the mixture overnight (on the counter), the oats start breaking down; essentially pre-digesting themselves so that your digestive system has an easy time getting you the energy from the food! Phytic acid is reduced (compared to just raw oats, and even compared to cooking oats), which permits us to absorb more minerals.


Overnight Oats

~Aka Bircher Musli~

Makes 6 servings

Ingredients

Slow cooking oats 2 cups
Chopped nuts of your choice ½ cup
Seeds (sesame, sunflower, pumpkin…) ½ cup
 Hemp hearts and/or chia seeds ½ cup
Dried unsweetened desiccated coconut, optional ½ cup
1 cup dried fruit, like cranberries, raisins, currants, berries… 1 cup
Plain, full fat probiotic yogurt, milk kefir or coconut yogurt 1 cup
Pure water 3 cups
Cinnamon 1 tsp
Cardamom (seed powder), optional ¾ tsp
Sweet apples or pears, grated on box grater coarsely 2

Directions:

  • In a large (at least 2 liter) container or bowl, mix all ingredients until moist.
  • Split the portions into 6 500ml mason jars for quick breakfast-to-go. You can put the lids on, but don’t seal tight until they go in the fridge.
  • Let sit on counter overnight or for about 8 hours.
  • You can enjoy it as is right away and then refrigerate and continue eating through the busy week.

Top with fresh berries if you like


By Andrea Potter 27 Jun, 2016

(By Jenn Rapske )

I may be a holistic nutritionist and a total food nerd, and so it may be of no surprise…I LOVE THE FARMERS MARKET ! I eagerly wait for Saturday morning to roll around, so I can enjoy my weekly almond milk latte while I shop my local farmers market . Some days, I almost have to pinch myself because I am so grateful to have access to many of the best local organic farmers and produce in town. Vancouver! We are blessed to live in this abundant city! I love the farmers market  for so many reasons. Today, I’m going to share a few of them with you.

More Posts

Rooted Nutrition Healthy Recipes and Holistic Nutrition and Lifestyle Articles

By Andrea Potter 12 Jan, 2017

Apple Pie Granola

Makes about 2 Liters, or 8 cups

Store-bought granola is marketed to seem healthier than boxed cereal, but it is usually just as ridden with sugar! Those tasty clusters are so tasty; the bad news is that they are mostly crystallized sugar.

Save yourself from the blood-sugar roller coaster by making this tasty cereal from scratch instead! The high proportion of nuts and seeds (half the bulk of the recipe!) gives you lots of protein and good fats to get your day started right. And enough whole grain to keep you feeling full till lunch.

 

Ingredients

4 cups slow-cooking rolled oats

1 cup cashews or almonds (whole, raw or sprouted)

1 cup seed of your choice (I like pumpkin seeds)

1 cup dried, unsweetened coconut

1 pinch salt

 

Spices

1 Tbsp cinnamon

1 tsp nutmeg

1 tsp cloves

(Or substitute 1.5 Tbsp apple pie spice if you have it)

 

In Blender

¼ cup chia or ground flax seed

½  cup honey, maple syrup or coconut nectar

2 cups unsweetened apple sauce OR just core, chop and blend 3 apples in the blender for ‘lazy’ raw apple sauce!

1 Tbsp vanilla

3 Tbsp coconut oil, melted

1 cup dried raisins (optional) or un-sulphured dried apple pieces

 

Directions

In a blender, combine chia or flax with apple sauce (or raw apple pieces if doing the ‘lazy’ version), sweetener, melted coconut oil and vanilla in blender until smooth.

In a mixing bowl, combine oats, spices, salt, nuts/seeds. Add with blended mixture to the dry mixture and stir well to combine. This part is important because once the flax or chia gets moist from being mixed into the blender mix; it starts to thicken, giving you nice clusters!

Spread mixture evenly and not too thick onto 2 parchment paper-lined baking sheets and bake at 320F, checking and stirring regularly. This takes about 1-2 hours, or just until it is dry to the touch.

Store it

Stir in dried fruit, cool and store in ziplock bags or airtight containers.

Keeps for at least a month.

Eat it

Enjoy with milk or alternative, on yogurt, over stewed fruit, eating out of hand, make granola bars or add a crunchy sprinkle  to ice cream etc.

 

By Andrea Potter 31 Dec, 2016

 

       Tell us a bit about yourself.

I am a plant-based baker. I was trained in Bread and Pastry Arts at North West Culinary Academy of Vancouver and after working in chocolate, catering and restaurants, I found my happy place as a baking instructor. If I was stranded on a desert island and could only choose 3 foods it would be beer, bread and chocolate. If I could only choose two, it would be beer and bread and if I could only choose one food, it would be sourdough bread!

      What inspired you to teach healthy cooking/baking?

When I was training in pastry, I became more and more aware of the need for baked goods that did not rely on highly refined products (i.e. white flour and white sugar), wheat, eggs and dairy products. I get a lot of satisfaction from helping people and so I wanted to create and share recipes for great baked goods that were friendlier to people’s specific diets, allergies and or ethics. I also gain so much from others experience and knowledge so teaching lets me create, share and learn all at the same time!

       What do you love most about healthy cooking/baking?

Plant-based baking is a very creative process for me. I get a lot out of the process of testing, failing and eventually problem solving baked goods that match our sensory memories (such as a brownie or ice cream). I also grow my own veggies so getting to use them in my baking is really satisfying! Most of all, I love sharing treats with others and seeing them experience joy at being able to eat them.

       How does learning to use whole and plant-based foods benefit you and those who you teach?

In addition to helping people find foods and recipes that they can reintroduce into their diets that suit them, I think it provides connection, inspires confidence in people and pleasure in cooking and baking. It also enhances the quality of our nutrition by integrating new and more plant based foods into our diets.

       What makes your cooking/baking classes different from the norm?

I strongly believe that great plant based baking is a combination of good technique and the right ingredients. So I really try to make baking methods approachable, low tech, and accessible to students so that they can gain confidence and have fun in learning new recipes and new skills without feeling intimidated. I also have no expectation that people who are in my class are plant based. There is no expectation that you need to change any of your practices or eliminate anything from your current diet. It’s simply about learning new things and having fun no matter where you are at in your food journey.

       What was your favourite experience cooking/baking healthy?

Getting to work with Andrea Potter who inspires me to be a better teacher and baker and seeing folks who had previously given up on sweets being able to integrate them into their diets again!

       How has healthy cooking/baking enhanced your life and the lives' of your students?

Honestly, it has helped me to find my place in the world! Working in this area of baking/food is very meaningful to me and keeps me learning all of the time: from my own mistakes, from my students, from the continuing sophistication of ingredients and methods. I see it enhance the lives of students when they tell me how they are able to eat the foods that bring them joy and gain confidence in their own cooking so that they share it with others.

       Any advice for students thinking of getting into healthy cooking/baking?

Our classes are really approachable and we are open minded so just give it a try. We’re here to offer you plant based options and then you then can decide for yourself what you want to try and integrate! No fancy equipment needed. Oh, and it’s delicious!


By Andrea Potter 01 Nov, 2016

Recipe by our RHN, Jenn Rapske

 This recipe checks all the boxes!

  • Quick
  • Gluten-Free
  • Naturally sweet with maple- no refined sugars!
  • CHOCOLATE!

Ingredients:

·        1 can full-fat coconut milk (no substitutions)

·        ½ cup unsweetened cacao powder, sifted

·        ½ cup pure maple syrup (less if desired)

·        ⅛ teaspoon coarse sea salt

·        ½ teaspoon vanilla bean powder or cinnamon

Instructions:

1.    Whisk together the coconut milk, cacao powder, maple syrup, and salt in a medium saucepan.

2.    Bring ingredients to a boil over medium heat, then turn the heat down and simmer 15 minutes while whisking frequently. The mixture will begin to thicken slightly.

3.    Turn off heat and whisk in vanilla/cinnamon.

4.    Cool to room temperature on the counter.

5.    Transfer to an airtight container or single serve containers (I like mini mason jars or ramekins).

6.    Refrigerate for a few hours.

7.    Serve chilled and garnish with your favorite ingredients—berries, nuts, coconut flakes, etc.

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