Vegetarian Yoga Retreat Recipes. Nadisunshine goes Gozo.

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Nadisunshine goes Michelle Bartolo Yoga Retreat

Nadisunshine goes Michelle Bartolo Yoga Retreat

Before we all dive into the yearly xmas craziness it’s time to share some of the recipes I cooked at Michelle Bartolo’s yoga retreat in Gozo earlier this month. Whenever you feel like you’ve overindulged, which happens to most of us at this time of the year, take a day or two (or three ;)) in between to balance it out again and get rid of all the acidity and toxins in your bodies. Keep it really light, avoid all processed sugars, dairy, alcohol and caffeine and stack up on veggies, fruits and grains. Start your day with warm lemon water, prepare yourself some healthy meals, drink lots of teas or water, do some yoga and mediation in the morning and/or evening and give your body and soul a little axtra love and time to recover.

Thanks again to my friend Michelle for giving me the opportunity to bring my cooking to you lovely yogis and yoginis! It was a pleasure to meet you and cook for you all :) If you’re interested in one of Michelle’s retreats, check out her website or Facebook page. I’ve been to many of her retreats in Gozo and can’t recommend this gift to yourself enough.

But now let’s get started with some of the healthy recipes of our yoga weekend.

Basil Booster - Nadisunshine goes Michelle Bartolo Yoga Retreat

Boosting Basil Smoothie
(serves 2-3)

What you need….

1 apple
1 orange
2 hands full of fresh basil
1 TS of maca powder
1 TS of spirulina or wheatgrass
500ml of water (or coconut water)
A tiny bit of coconut oil

Optional: if you like to give it some extra protein add some hemp or pea protein powder

Wash the apple and basil, peel the orange. Start filling the blender with the softer ingredients and then add the harder ones on top, like this it blends easier. Top up with water, add the rest and blend until smooth. 

More smoothie inspirations you can also find in my blog post Soulful Smoothies

 Morning muesli mix - Nadisunshine goes Michelle Bartolo Yoga Retreat

Morning muesli mix with with pomegranates & oranges

Making your own muesli mix is not only a healthy breakfast option but also very convenient in daily life. Get a big jar and prepare the mix once, it will last you for several weeks and you always have it handy in the morning :)

What you need….
(amounts depending on the size of your box, play with it!)

Oats (about 50% of the box, that’s the base)
Chia seeds
Whole almonds
Flax seeds
Sunflower seeds
Pumpkin seeds
Goji berries
Dried cranberries, mulberries, apple etc. (whatever you have and like)

Possible superfood additions
Cacao nibs
Maca powder
Baobab powder
Bee pollen

Possible toppings:
Cinnamon
Coconut flakes
Raw cacao powder

To prepare it:
A tiny bit of oil (I use cold pressed flax seed oil cause of the great amounts of omega 3)
Fresh fruit (I mostly try to go for local and seasonal)
Hot water or dairy free milk

What to do…

Mix all ingredients in a big box or jar (apart from the toppings). When you want to have breakfast, take out 3 table spoons per person in a little bowl (seems little but soaks up nicely), top it up with hot water or dairy free milk, let it stand for a bit (10min minimum, no maximum) and finally add some fruit, a drizzle of oil and toppings of your choice.

As I said, play with the mix – you can add or skip ingredients and see what you like best. Only the oats and chia seeds I wouldn’t skip as they are the base for a nicely soaked up muesli. Enjoy and have some great energetic mornings!

This recipe with some extra info you can also find in my blog post Our special morning muesli mix 

Nadisunshine's choco chia seed pudding

Nadisunshine’s choco chia seed pudding

Glutenfree choco chia pudding
(1 portion)

What you need…
1 empty jar (e.g. from jam, about 200ml)
2 table spoons of chia seeds (black, white or mixed, they all work fine)
Daily free milk like coconut or almond
1 small handful of goji berries (also other dried fruit works fine)
Some drops of organic vanilla essence (you can also play with different essences like
Orange blossom water or rose water another time :)
1 tea spoon of desiccated coconut
1 tea spoon of raw cacao
A tiny bit of your favorite natural sweetener like raw honey, agave sirup or maple sirup
Pear (or any other fruit you like) & cacao nibs as a topping

What to do..
Use any old jar with a lid. Mix the chia seeds with the milk and add all other ingredients apart from the pear. Close the lid tight, shake it well and let it rest for at least 60min. Shake it a couple of times in between to avoid clumping. If you find a clump, loosen it with a spoon/fork. After 30min you can already see how the seeds swell. The pudding gets thicker and thicker over time. I normally even put it in the fridge overnight so I have it ready for bfast.

As a result you’ll get a creamy pudding which can now be served in any kind of way. I warmed it up for you in the morning which is nice and comforting, especially in fall and winter. Garnish with pear and sprinkle with cacao nibs and enjoy your probably healthiest pudding ever! 

Chia pudding can also be a yummy desert or snack at any time of the day. Some more info and a different chia pudding recipe you can also find in this blog post

Curry & Coconut Butternut Squash Soup - Nadisunshine goes Michelle Bartolo Yoga Retreat

Butternut squash coconut curry soup
(2-3 portions)

What you need…
1 butternut squash
1 can of coconut milk (thick)
Curry
Tumeric
Cumin
Some ginger
A tiny bit of cayenne pepper (careful, it’s super hot!)
Yeast free vegetable stock
Best quality salt (I prefer pink Himalayan salt)
1 table spoon of coconut oil

For the topping:
Mixed seeds (flax, sesame, pumpkin)
Coconut oil
Quarter of a lemon
Tamari Sauce (the healthier alternative to soy sauce)

What to do..
Peel pumpkin, remove the seeds and chop up roughly. Melt the coconut oil in a pot and start roasting the pumpkin. Top up with stock, coconut milk and add all spices. Let it simmer on medium heat for about 20min (or until soft). Switch off the heat and puree directly in the pot with your hand-held blender. If it’s too thick add a bit more stock. Season to taste with salt.

For the topping heat up a small frying pan on medium heat and start roasting the seeds with a tiny bit of coconut oil. After a little while squeeze the lemon and add tamarin but just enough so it’s soaked up. You don’t want it too liquid. Turn off the heat and sprinkle on the soup.

Additionally you can also roast some butternut squash slices in the oven and use them as a topping for your soup or on a nice side salad. I always love a bowl of greens with my soup. Just coat squash with a bit of coconut oil, sprinkle with cumin, cayenne pepper, salt and roast it for about 20min at 190°Celsius.

More soup recipes you can find here…

Nadisunshine goes Michelle Bartolo Yoga Retreat

If you wish any other recipes of our weekend retreat, just let me know and I’ll happily post them at a later stage!

Lots of love & sunshine and may you get healthy and happy through the festive season!!!

N xx

Flu fighter tumeric drink

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Yep. We know it all, that time of the year when the seasons change.. When the sun is out, it still gets really warm, your wear too many clothes, start sweating, the sun goes down it gets cold and as you’re sweaty you get cold. Or, scenario 2: it’s a warm sunny day and you get totally excited and wear too little. Sun goes down, you’re really getting cold and keep freezing your, excuse my French, bum off. At the bottom line both situation have the same effect: welcome to the season where each and everyone around you and at some stage even the healthy YOU gets sick!!!

What I normally do is try to catch the cold as soon as I feel the tiniest scratch in my throat (my weak point). Next to the usual suspects like my bee propolis drops (nature’s antibiotic), lots of teas (sage for sore throat, thyme for cough and ginger as it always boosts the immune system) and some extra loads of sleep and vitamins I really want to recommend you guys my secret weapon which already saved me a couple of times: the Flu fighter tumeric drink

The super ingredient in this drink is tumeric, also known as curcuma. The health benefits of tumeric are countless (click here for the top 10), but next to many others it’s super inflammatory and antibacterial and this is exactly what we want, oh yes! So save the heavy stuff from the pharmacy for emergencies and give this drink a try!

Nadisunshine's flu fighter tumeric drink

Nadisunshine’s flu fighter tumeric drink

What you need..
(for 1 mug)

  • 1 teaspoon of tumeric
  • 1 teaspoon of raw honey
  • half thumb size piece of fresh ginger
  • 1/2 a lemon, squeezed
  • hot water
  • tiny pinch of cayenne pepper (optional) (if used careful you don’t take too much)

What to do…

First boil the water. Let it stand for a bit so it’s not boiling hot anymore (the raw honey wouldn’t like that). Prepare your favorite mug with the tumeric, honey, ginger slices, lemon juice and the tiniest pinch of cayenne if you decided to go for it. Now add only a bit of the hot water and stir properly. If you stir it later it will be more difficult to mix the tumeric powder easily. When it’s all well blended top up with the remaining hot water, give it another stir and drink in small sips as long as it’s warm. If you like it sweeter add a bit more honey and enjoy!

Hope it helps you to get better and stronger <3
Stay fit & healthy,

N xx

Soulful Smoothies

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Soulfull Smoothies

All summer long I’ve been hooked on my morning smoothies. They got like a friend to me. Everyday a little different, depending on what I have at home. I normally try go along with the 2/3 – 1/3 rule of thumb to keep it alkaline. So, 2/3 greens or veggies and 1/3 fruit. To get an idea about the alkaline way in a nutshell read this article on one of my favourite cooking websites Honestly Healthy.

As for veggies you can choose all different kinds of things… fresh spinach, herbs like basil, mint or cilantro, zucchini, cucumber.. they all work well and don’t fast too strong. As for fruit I always like a banana, or some other sweet fruit like melon, pineapple, nectarine or apple.

It’s always nice to throw in some nuts like almonds, cashews, chia seeds or sunflower seeds to add a bit of protein or you add a teaspoon of protein powder (I like hemp or pea protein). Feel free to give it a special kick with the wide variety of super foods available: maca to balance your hormones, raw cacao full of antioxidants, spirulina, wheatgrass, lucuma for sweetness, acai – you name it!

Finally top it up with liquid. You can take water, coconut water, your favourite dairy free milk (almond, coconut..) or what I like as well cold tea like green tea, mint tea, redbush tea etc. I always make a hug jug of tea everyday while I work and you can easily use those leftovers in your smoothies! Last but not least add a tiny little drop of oil (flax seed, coconut) to ensure the maximum absorption of vitamins of all ingredients. Remember when we were kids, they used to add a drop of oil to your fresh carrot juice in the pharmacies? That’s why.

Now, put your lid on your blender and get started :)
Get creative and make it a habit – the perfect way to start your day or also great for an afternoon snack!

Enjoy your smoothies & big love,
N x

Alkalising smoothie creations above:

Top left: Melon zucchini morning bliss
1 handful of cantaloupe, 2 small zucchini, lots of mint, coconut water, maca, lucuma & spirulina

Top right: Spinach Banana Smoothie
Fresh spinach, coconut water, banana, maca, lucuma & spirulina.

Bottom left: Basil Booster
Lots of basil, mint, half a cucumber, 1 banana, some Brazil nuts & maca powder.

Bottom right: Mexican banana chocolate smoothie
This is a sweet kick off for the day which can also be used as a delicious afternoon pick me up.
1 banana, raw cacao powder, maca, almond or coconut milk, tiny pinch of cayenne pepper (careful!)

Enjoy!

Raw zucchini spaghetti with raw cream cheese and tomatoes

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Recently I posted some photos of my first batch of raw cheese on my blog’s Facebook page. Shortly after my first batch of raw zucchini pasta for which I used my new spiraliser. Quite a lot of people saw that and gave me their positive comments on it, most of them curious as I guess it’s still something pretty new to many of us. I’ll definitely play around with it more often in the future. But for now let me share how I made it, as first times often get the most of attention in life ;-)

Btw the cherry on the top was that all fresh herbs I used in this recipe are from our new lovely and lush vertical garden on our balcony! *Happy me*

raw  cream cheese

Let’s get started with the raw cream cheese
The recipe below will give you a nice amount of cream cheese which will last you for several days. It can be used on sandwiches, wraps, as a  dip for vegetable sticks, on sliced tomatoes like a vegan caprese.. or as I did in the end as a sauce for the raw zucchini pasta.

What you need
2 cup of chashew nuts (soaked over night)
1 handful of fresh herbs (washed & dried); I used basil, parsley, mint, rosemary and a tiny bit of sage (careful with this one, it’s strong!)
Some lemon juice
A splash of water (not too much, you can always use more if needed)
Some of your best olive oil
Salt
Pinch of cayenne pepper (check this article out if you don’t know why this is such a superstar in your cupboard)
Nutritional yeast to you liking (give it a cheese flavour)

What to do
Now the best part starts. Put it all in your processor until it gets creamy and nice.  You might need to use a spatula in between to incorporate everything. Ready :)

raw zucchini pasta

Now the raw zucchini pasta
here it get’s even better:

What you need
Zucchini (washed)
A spiraliser (like this one)

What to do
Put the zucchini in the spiraliser and spiral away – easy as that!

I added some diced fresh tomatoes, drizzled with a bit of olive oil and served it with a bit of fresh basil on top.

Bon Rawppetite!

Love,
N xx

Tricolore rice with coconut milk, vanilla, peaches & plums

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There are some things which you can eat at anytime of the day. They are always welcome – be it for bfast, as a snack, or a healthy dessert, be it summer, be it winter. The following is one of them.

My BF has a lot of childhood memories about milky rice. But how to make a healthier version of it and, next to the white refined rice which lost all nutrients on the way, how to replace the cows milk and tons of sugar? Well, this is one alternative to go – and honestly, we like it even better as it’s not only super yummy but also good for us!

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What you need
Serves 2
2 cup of cooked Tricolore rice (brown, red & black, ideally organic)
Coconut milk or your favorite non dairy milk
Coconut flakes (optional)
1 vanilla pod or best quality vanilla essence
Raw agave sirup to your liking
Peaches and plums or other nice seasonal fruit

What to do
Cook rice according to instructions. I already had mine from the day before. If you make it just a for this dish you could even cook the rice in coconut milk which will make it even creamier. If it’s precook we out it in a pot and add coconut milk until rice is covered. Add vanilla, coconut flakes and cook it on medium heat so it gets creamy and warm. Add agave sirup and turn off the heat. Chop up the fruit and place it on top. If you like to warm it’s ready to eat. If you prefer it cold, like we did as it’s summer and warm enough cool it for a bit in the fridge.

Enjoy!
Sunshine & love,
N xx

 

 

Easy peasy frittata

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Some of my favorite dishes are the really simple ones. Quality of ingredients like the eggs is key though and you’ll taste the difference once you started. Like most of my dishes this recipe can easily be played with. Exchange the veg with whatever veg you have to use up, add whichever herbs you like and add some flavor boosters like feta cheese or a bit of smoked salmon or Parma ham if you’re not on a vegetarian diet. Be brave!

For today’s version of frittata I served myself from veggie leftovers of the fridge and our new herb garden on the balcony. Oh my! The joys of fresh herbs are just indescribable for me! Really try to include more of them in your daily diet, they not only tickle your taste buds but are also have tons of health benefits. Nice side effect of this dish is also that it gives you a good chunk of your daily needed protein which is too often neglected on a mainly plant based diet.

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What you need 

(Serves 2)
4 eggs, preferably organic
2 handful of veggies: I used 2 small zucchinis, some mushrooms and leftovers of green asparagus
A splash of milk (I used coconut)
1 clove of garlic
Lots of fresh coriander and basil
Some coconut oil
Himalayan salt
Pepper (get yourself a proper pepper mill and a nice mix of proper corns, so worth it!)

What to do
Heat up a medium sized pan (non stick) with a table spoon of coconut oil (remember better not to use olive oil when it’s heated). Slowly fry the chopped up veg for a bit until they get nicely caramelised (light brown, that boosts the flavors). In the meantime beat the eggs with milk of your choice, salt and pepper. Pour it over your veggie mix. Put on a lid. Now let it sit for about 10min (can depend on job and pan, try to move it carefully. When it seems solid in the bottom it’s time). Take of the lid and put a dish on top of the pan. Flip carefully. Now repeat the other side for 10 more min.

Enjoy with a nice salad. I made a yummy quick tomato avocado salad with fresh basil, olive oil, salt and lemon juice. Enjoy as a light lunch or dinner! And if you’re lucky and have leftovers it’s also great for a take away snack.

Let me know about your favorite variations!

Love,
N xx

Thai flavored stir fry with coriander garlic prawns

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This is a very tasty, simple and yet delicious dish. It’s perfect for those nights where you want to make something special for a friend coming over but don’t have tons of time for cooking. A quick walk to your favorite supermarket for the fresh ingredients and a food lovers well equipped cupboard will offer all the sauces, spices and herbs you need. Once again: easy is right.

As usually in my recipes you can play with the vegetables as well as the noodles, instead of rice noodles soba or egg noodles would work too, so would brown rice, jasmin or basmati rice.

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What you need:
Serves 2

6 fresh, large king prawns
1 zucchini
1 fennel
1/2 box of cherry tomatoes
Small bunch of spring onions
Garlic
Fresh coriander
Fresh ginger
1 lemon
1 lime

Rice noodles, soba noodles (already cooked) or rice

Sesame oil
Fish sauce
Tamari
Worcester sauce
Chilies

What to do:

Put on some nice music and pour yourself a glass of wine. This step is not mandatory but I promise you being relaxed and happy will improve the flavor of the dish :)
Take your time to prepare all vegetables, wash and cut them in thin, bite-sized pieces. I like to prepare them in little bowls. Chop ginger finely, press the garlic. Wen everything is prepared heat up a wok pan on very hight temperature. Start with the ginger and garlic and then add veg one after the other (the harder ones first). Now stir regularly for some minutes (important otherwise everything will burn!). In the meantime heat up a frying pan, add sesame oil, garlic and fry the prawns just for a couple of minutes to avoid dryness. Deglaze the vegetables with lemon and lime juice, add the sauces and add a splash of water. Add the rice noodles and mix everything thoroughly. Try a bit so you can add more if you like it more salty or sour. Add the fresh coriander to the prawns. Switch the hob off and prepare a bed of the veg-noodle mix (if you use rice don’t mix it and serve it separately instead). Put the king prawns to bed, sprinkle with coriander and enjoy!