Calming Reishi Tonic

Calming Reishi Tonic

I’ve been incorporating adaptogens in my daily life to increase energy, relieve stress, relax me before I go to bed, and so on.  The list goes on as adaptogens have a myriad of benefits for your body.  So, what are adaptogens?  They are non-toxic plants that have been used for centuries in Chinese and Ayurvedic healing traditions.  They help the body resist stressors and are immune boosting.  You can take them in supplement form or in powder form (my preferred method).

Adaptogens give me the much-needed boost throughout my day.  This Calming Reishi Tonic utilizes Gynostemma tea, a calming tea I drink often before bed time and Reishi Mushroom powder, which increases energy, improves digestion and soothes inflammation.  Reishi can be quite bitter so add your favorite sweetener to the drink.  The Calming Reishi Tonic is creamy and delicious due to the homemade almond milk incorporated into it.  I did a quick soak of my almonds (15 minutes in boiling hot water), drained them and added the remaining ingredients to my blender.  Once blended, you strain the mixture into a medium saucepan and serve immediately.  This tonic is in my hot beverage rotation on most weekends.  I’ve been thoroughly enjoying the additions of adaptogens in my life.  It’s made quite difference.

 

Calming Reishi Tonic//makes 1 serving

Steep 1 tsp loose leaf Gynostemma Tea in 1 1/2 cups water (I used @immortalitea_company)
1/4 tsp Reishi powder
2 heaping tbsp soaked almonds
1 date
1/4 tsp ground cardamom
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon 

Combine the soaked almonds, steeped tea, dates, and spices in a high-speed blender. Purée on high. Strain tea through a fine sieve in a medium pot. Bring to a simmer, being careful not to let the milk boil. Serve warm. 

Vegan Chocolate Espresso Mousse

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I couldn't let the year come to an end without a chocolate recipe.  So, here it is.  Vegan Chocolate Espresso Mousse with Goji Berries & Hemp Seeds.  This is by far THE simplest, creamiest recipe that you can put together.  Once you make it, you'll always make it AND it's healthy AND it will look awesome on your holiday dessert table.   

Enjoy your holiday's and Happy New Year!!!

 

 

 

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chocolate mousse
2 ripe avocados
1/4 cup Cacao powder
2 teaspoons espresso powder
1/4 cup coconut nectar sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/4 cup plant-based milk (I used almond milk)

In a food processor or blender, blend all ingredients until smooth. Pour into individual serving bowls. Garnish with goji berries and hemp seeds. Serve immediately.

After-Thanksgiving Turkey Stew w/ Whole Wheat Potato Rolls

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This After Thanksgiving Turkey Stew is plain and simple requiring minimal ingredients: leftover turkey, canned tomatoes, sweet potato, green beans and fresh herbs.  If you’re anything like me, I’m usually over Thanksgiving food by day two.  By this time, I’ve either cut up and frozen the remaining turkey or if the mood hits me, I’ll make this Turkey Stew.  It came together rather quickly, which is much needed after laboring over the stove preparing an entire Thanksgiving dinner.  The Whole Wheat Potato Rolls were leftovers from Thanksgiving and added another level of excitement to the mix.  I’ve been eyeballing this recipe from B. Smith’s cookbook for awhile, but I needed the perfect time and inspiration to make them.  They came out tender, soft and moist.  The perfect accompaniment to the Turkey Stew.

You can use what ever you have on hand to make the stew.  I already had cooked sweet potato and I used frozen green beans.  If you’ve gone a little overboard with Thanksgiving dinner (mac and cheese, stuffing, potato salad, pie and so on), this stew is clean eating at its best.  Add quinoa or brown rice for extra fiber if you’d like.  Serve in soup bowls and use the bread to dip up the yummy tomato broth.

Enjoy!

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After-Thanksgiving Turkey Stew w/ Whole Wheat Potato Rolls//makes 4 servings

turkey stew
1 medium onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, chopped
2 cups diced cooked turkey
2 cups peeled and cubed sweet potatoes
2 rosemary sprigs
2 thyme sprigs
1-14.5 oz can diced tomatoes
2 cups turkey or chicken stock
1 ½ cups green beans, fresh or frozen
Freshly ground black pepper and salt to taste

In a 2-qt sauce pan, sauté onion and garlic over medium high heat until translucent.  Add diced turkey, sweet potato, rosemary, thyme and the stock.  Bring to simmer.  While simmering, add the green beans.  Lower the heat and cook for 10 minutes or until vegetables are tender.  Season with salt and pepper.  Once done, ladle soup in individual soup bowls.  Serve immediately. 

Note: If using frozen green beans, add the last 5 minutes of cooking to avoid over cooking the green beans.

whole wheat potato rolls//makes 12 rolls
adapted from B. Smith’s Entertaining and Cooking for Friends

1 large potato (12 ounces), peeled and cubed
4 teaspoons active dry yeast
1 tablespoon sugar
2 ¾ cups unbleached all-purpose flour
2 ¼ cups whole wheat flour
1 ½ teaspoons salt
2/3 cup milk, warmed (105 to 115 F)
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

Cook the potato in boiling water salted water until tender.  Drain, reserving ¼ cup of the cooking liquid, and mash the potato well.  Set aside.

Cool the reserved potato cooking liquid to between 105° and 115° F.  Then stir the yeast and the sugar into the liquid and let the mixture stand until it is frothy (about 10 minutes).  Meanwhile, stir the flours and salt together in a large bowl.

In a large mixing bowl, stir together the yeast mixture, warm milk, eggs, melted butter, and mashed potato.  Add 3 cups of the flour mixture and beat for 5 minutes, until very smooth.  Gradually add more of the flour mixture to form a dough.  Turn the dough out onto a floured surface, and gradually knead in the remaining flour.  Continue to knead the dough until it is smooth.  It should be soft but not stick. If necessary add more flour, 1 tablespoon at a time.

Place the dough in a large greased bowl, and turn it over once to coat the top with grease.  Cover the bowl loosely with greased plastic wrap, and let the dough rise in a warm place for 1 hour or until it has doubled in size.

Grease 12 large muffin cups.  Punch the dough down and divide it into 12 pieces.  Shape them into smooth rounds and place them in the muffin cups.  Cover as before, and let rise in a warm place for 30 minutes or until doubled in size.  Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 400° F.

Bake the rolls for 15 to 20 minutes, until they are golden on top and sound hollow when tapped on the bottom.  Transfer them to a wire rack to cool completely.