Wednesday, 14 January 2015

Raw Chocolate cups


Amazingness is raw chocolate in a little cup. So simple, so easy.
If I am honest I don't really have a recipe, my chocolate, like many things in my life is pretty freestyle. I just enjoy mixing, making and tasting :-) 

Here is a rough guide to how these chocolate cups came to fruition.....

Large heaped spoon of coconut oil gently melted
Maple syrup to sweeten to your taste
Raw Cacao powder about 2 tablespoons
Ground almonds  2 tablespoons 
Pinch of salt
Vanilla 1/2 tsp
Lucuma 1 tsp

Mix really well before adding.......

Big handful of goji berries
Small handful of cacao nibs
4 chopped unsulphered apricots 

Spoon into little silicone cups or whatever container you have and try and let them set before you eat them!! 

Saturday, 6 December 2014

Superfood Deconstructed Apple Crumble

I love weekend breakfasts and so wish I had more time to enjoy them every day of the week but then I hear you say, they wouldn't be so special.
You can make it as a crumble if you have the time or do the deconstructed version if you need your breakfast urgently, as i tend to ;-)

3 Organic apples chopped in a pan….. add,
1tsp baobab powder
1tsp Maca (quite strong tasting so 1/2 if you need to)
2 tsp Lucuma Powder
cinnamon to taste and a splash of water to cook

3 tbps coconut oil
2 tbps coconut palm sugar/syrup or healthy sweetener of choice
1 cup of oats
handful each of pumpkin, sunflower and chia seeds
pink of sea salt
I melted oil and sugar together then added dry ingredients
stir well and then cook in the oven for 10 mins at 170' but keep an eye and turn if needed
I also baked some pecan separately.

Finally a large spooning of Coyo.
Really this was my perfect breakfast.

I am adding a Glossary for my wonderful friend Charlie and anyone else who is interested in the super part of food.

Maca: amazing for strength, energy and balancing hormones, oh and it's a cheeky aphrodisiac too
Baobab: High in Vit C and Potasssium, also helps improve the body's efficient use of calories from food to energy!
Lucuma: Provides us with 14 essential trace elements, including a considerable amount of potassium, sodium, calcium, magnesium and phosphorus.
So much goodness !! Be excited !!

Saturday, 18 October 2014

Let us Yoga while the cake bakes!

Born out of desperation our Yoga and Baking mornings have got off to a fine beginning. My dear friend Laura had lost all hope in gluten free baking so Peta and I decided we should right this wrong, gather, set a baking mission and of course do some yoga :-) with that our Wild Laurel mornings were initiated.
 We would choose a recipe, make said recipe and while it was in the oven we would Yoga to the delicious nose tingling delights of our baking magic. Let's just say it could not go wrong.

Today's recipe is from Susan Jane White's The Extra Virgin Kitchen

Praline Cupcakes
1/2 cup Cocoa Powder (I used Raw Cacao)
1/4 Coconut Flour
I teaspoon Baking Powder
1/2 cup raw agave/ honey
3 Tablespoons almond butter or Soya Yogurt
3 eggs beaten
5 tablespoons Coconut Oil melted
1 tablespoon Tamari
2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
1 teaspoon Vanilla extract

Praline Frosting
2/3 cup Cashew Butter
1/2 cup Maple Syrup
2 teaspoons Tamari
taste if you like a little more salt and add tamari accordingly

Preheat oven to 180'/160'fan or 350'F
Sift Cocoa, coconut flour and baking powder into a large mixing bowl.

Beat together, sweetener with Almond butter or soya yogurt with a large balloon whisk and blend in all remaining ingredients.

Add the wet mix to the dry and blend thoroughly with the balloon whisk until silky smooth.

Prepare your muffin trays with cupcake liners or as we did use brilliant star and heart shaped silicon muffin cups.
Mixture will be super runny so trying not to cover everything in this deliciousness, finding any excuse to lick all bowls and spoons repeatedly! Fill each cup about 2.5 cm

Cook for max 20 mins but keep an eye on them as ours cooked pretty quick and our second batch that we cooked less were more delectable. Coconut flour can be a little sticky in the mouth so these cupcakes need to be super moist to enjoy their decedent healthiness.

Mix frosting ingredients and smoother each little star with a heap of paradise.

Tip: The extra virgin chef states not to use maple, barley malt or brown rice syrup as sweetener in the mixture because it "misbehaves" with the coconut flour.
Coconut flour behaves unlike any other flour so don't substitute it with another flour, it won't work!

We baked 30 and devoured rather a lot of them with coyo and fruit.
Amazingness on all accounts……………

Thursday, 4 September 2014

Green Smoothie- Current Favouite :-)


There are green smoothies and there are green smoothies and then well..... The options are endlessly green ... My current favourite protein potent smoothie is this..... 

1 1/2 cups Oat milk
Ice/ water 
Teaspoon Matcha Green tea Powder
2 teaspoons green powder of choice -the Pukka Clean Greens packs a serious punch giving you your daily umph in the form of Nettles, Wheat Grass, Barley Grass, Parsley, Spirulina, Chlorella, seaweed, Kales sprouts, the list goes on!  (I think I need to write a whole article on this amazingness!!) 
2 large handfuls of fresh spinach
1/2 courgette?! 
I scoop of Sun Warrior plain vegan protein powder 
Handful Chia seeds
Vanilla essence
Dash of coconut palm sugar if you need a little sweetness or a bit of banana is tasty too 

All ingredients can be modified to your taste buds so feel free to experiment 
It's a brilliant breakfast but also makes for an amazing afternoon pick you up. Enjoy it in all it's divine wild greenness 

Thursday, 28 August 2014

Cultivating Your Creative Core


I am often asked what the best way is to strengthen our core. And really it is simple. Use your body well, do the work and build awareness. Here is how...........

The breathing is often the last thing that comes together in our yoga practice but it is the most important. 
The breath is what guides us to a place of deep meditation during our movement but it also supports our practice physically. I often say "power your body with your breath , think of the breath like the wind in your sails" 
So during your practice you should inhale from your solar plexus area, expanding around the complete circumference of your lower ribs and exhale from your naval centre gentle pulling your belly button in towards your spine. ( place your hands on rib cage and then on belly until you get the hang of it) This is key as it keeps the yogic locks engaged so you have the strength and elevation needed for a strong, supported, smooth practice. But it also means you work your deep core muscles, all four layers of them and of course their connecting muscles that help create the beautiful moving phenomenon that we are :-)
We often get caught up in wanting an enviable washboard belly but we must be careful not to block our creative, sexual centre at the core, we want to be strong and toned but not held and ridgid. On a physical level strengthening our core is key for lower back support, stabilising the pelvis and allowing us to open our chest and give us more heart space. And on a subtle level we need freedom at the core be be expressive, sensual and move with tha natural ebb and flow of life. 

When we use our bodies in a dynamic way, as we do during a flowing yoga class our whole body is engaged at every stage. Our bodies become a continuous web, every muscle working together, there should be no separation, no isolation, watch a cheetah run, a deer jump or a snake move through the grass and feel that in your body as you move. Find your feline agility, the spring in your step, don't miss an opportunity to use your body properly and you will see your body change shape, be sculpted, feel light and athletic. 
I used to joke with my father that my body was my earthly vessel, but in earnest I did have a sense from an early age that this vessel was sacred and I needed to care for it. So remember to love, honour and be kind to your body. It's the only one you've got and my goodness it tries its hardest to be the best! 

Although you need to be using your core throughout your practice here are some poses that will deepen your awareness and increase your core strength 
1. Dandasana The Plank- plank as often as you can. Hold it for 10 breaths and build up, make sure your chaturunga is slow and controlled as you lower yourself towards the earth.
2. Bakasana The Crow. Don't be fooled by thinking you need arm strength. It's really a core asana 
3. Sirsasana Headstand- by doing your headstand against the wall you miss the most import lesson, how to engage and have full control over the inversion with your core. You may be upside down but you aren't doing headstand! Use the wall as your emergency but try not to touch it. Then Pike and learn what those tummy muscles are really made of! 

Monday, 14 April 2014

Everybody's Easter Cookies

It's safe to say I like to bake, Friday has surreptitiously become the day for exploring new recipes and creating divinely delicious treats to healthily indulge in over the weekend.
This weekend I spent in the countryside visiting my God daughter Eleanora. Her mother, who has proclaimed total apathy towards baking leaves it up to me to cut the cookie dough.
But…."no eggs, no gluten, no nuts and no sugar"  Perfect, Just how I like it!

125g Vegan Margarine or Goats butter
4 tbsp Coconut Palm Sugar
I tsp Vanilla Essence
150g Gluten free flour
70g Self raising Gluten free flour

I am certainly not aspiring to be Heston but I am an explorer and love to experiment and mix it up. This was a basic biscuit recipe that I have gently doctored to meet the health requirements I desire without compromising on the taste.
I'd rather just lick maple syrup out of the bowl than eat a cookie that didn't cut it.

Keep the heat low. the slower you cook them the more shortbready they become.
I say 175'C but you could probably go lower.
Mix butter, sugar and vanilla in to a smooth paste
Sift in the flour
Roll mixture into a log and refrigerate for 30 mins or so
Then cut cookie sized slices roll in your hands to soften and flatten on to a cookie tray.
Press a fork in to the top to make a nice home made pattern.
Or for a special occasion roll out the dough to 1cm thickness and use fun cookie cutters. I am a stars and hearts fan myself.
Place in the oven for 15 mins or until golden, Turning them once during baking.

Everybody loves an easter cookie :-)

Wednesday, 9 April 2014

Wild Nettle Soup.

I have seen a few posts about wild foraging so I thought I would share mine!
Nettles are packed full of health benefits, way too many for me to list without taking up too much of your time and space but the most relevant to us all are these:
-Stimulate the lymph system to boost immunity
-Help Support Adrenals
-Reduce inflammation in the body
-Supports the endocrine system by helping the thyroid, Spleen and Pancreas

I have tried a few nettle recipes but this is my favourite from Susan Jane White at The Extra Virgin Kitchen
On asking my mother where the best place for nettles was she replied "Everywhere! On the drive, up the dairy, down by the cottages, Everywhere!" so I wasn't short of picking spots. Armed with rubber gloves and a plastic bag I set off. The small tender nettles are the best, but they are also the stingiest, so watch your ankles!

You need………..

Half a carrier bag of nettle leaves
1 leek
4 white onions
1 head of Garlic
2 litres Veg Stock
1 cup of frozen peas (optional)
Olive or coconut oil
Your best salt and Pepper

I wrapped the Garlic in Silver foil and put in the aga for 20 mins or until sguidgy, Your oven will need to be at about 180'
Sweat the leeks and Onions in a little oil until they look tender and translucent, add a little water if needed.
Wash the nettles well, remember to wear your rubber gloves, don't get this far and forget they sting!
Place the nettles in the pan with the onions and leek and add the stock.
Add a little salt and pepper and then bring to the boil, reduce the heat and let it simmer for 5 mins
Add the peas if you are using them, they add delicious creaminess and will cook quickly as you prepare to blend your soup.
Once the soup is blended squeeze in your roasted garlic and stir it through.

This a brilliant soup as part of a spring clean or any time with a hunk of rye bread and some soft Pecorino
Please share your wild recipes with us :-)