Spaghetti Squash + Fiddlehead Pasta Primavera (gluten free, vegan)

Spaghetti Squash + Fiddlehead Pasta Primavera-7

I’m absolutely in love with this dish. I’ve been making a variation of it for the last year or so, and it always makes for a perfect dinner. Satisfying, wholesome, and flavourful, it can be ready in under 40 minutes but tastes (and looks) like it took two hours. The marriage of classic Italian flavours – parsley, basil, olive oil, and sundried tomatoes – with the rather more Canadian textures of the squash and fiddleheads is really quite exciting. On weeknights it makes for an indulgent-feeling meal, but since there’s no pasta, it’s hardly an indulgence in the usual sense of the word. You’ll be full without feeling overly stuffed, which is something I will always endorse.

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Spring Detox Smoothie (gluten free, vegan, raw)

Detox Smoothie (1 of 2)This recipe marks a pretty monumental achievement. I have a new favourite smoothie.  This might sound fairly humdrum to those of you living outside of my head (which I guess would be all of you, with the exception of Conor, on occasion), but I can assure you, a new smoothie entering my breakfast rotation is not a frequent occurrence. I alternate between a couple favourites during the week and enjoy my Chocolate Almond Java Shake on the weekends when I know I have the time to hit the gym extra hard and need a little boost, but that’s about as adventurous as I get on a busy morning. But this smoothie… it’s like a cool burst of spring air. Not only is it completely satisfying, it’s absolutely invigorating. Designed to help aid digestion using a few key ingredients, I can guarantee this will wake you up at least as well as coffee and stimulate your digestive system to start producing all those gut-friendly enzymes in the process. If I could sum up the taste in one word, it would be vibrant. Between the tartness of the lemon, the kick of the ginger, and the freshness of the parsley, it really tastes like a happy garden in a glass. Scroll down for a full breakdown of the health benefits of this smoothie! Let’s show our tummies some love, shall we? Continue reading

Coconut Java Cookie Dough Balls (and what to do with leftover almond pulp) – gluten free, vegan option

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It’s probably too soon to be sharing another cookie dough ball recipe. I thought long and hard about whether I should just tuck this recipe away for a rainy day. But the last couple of weeks, aside from being overwhelmingly busy and exhausting, have seen a lot of unsuccessful recipe testing and unfortunate photo taking. It happens. Some weekends it seems like everything I touch in the kitchen turns to gold, and others… well, let’s just say I ate a lot of waffles yesterday and enjoyed very few of them.

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Peppermint Pattie Smoothie (gluten free, vegan)

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Happy day-before St. Patrick’s Day!

Whoever first thought to combine chocolate and mint deserves some kind of lifetime achievement award, at least in my books. It’s one of my all-time favourite sweet pairings, so much so that I was rarely found without a box of Junior Mints in my purse during my high school years. These days, I eschew those high-fructose corn syrup droplets of yum in favour of more natural alternatives. I have found some pretty fantastic organic dark chocolate + mint bars over the last few years that satisfy the craving and taste infinitely better, but today I wanted to give a nod to the Irish side of my heritage and celebrate the holiday in a healthful way.

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Cream of Tomato and Basil Soup (gluten free, vegan)

IMG_1607 I had tomato soup for the first time in my life about three months ago. Yes, you heard that correctly. In my twenty seven tomato loving years on this planet, pretty much all of them have been tomato soup-less. I have no explanation for this, other than the fact that my early encounters with the dish involved staring at red goop from a can and politely (and not-so-politely) refusing. That basically turned me off the whole thing for good. I assumed it would be an experience somewhere in between drinking straight tomato sauce and hot tomato juice – eeyuk! How ignorant I was. Continue reading

Butternut Squash and Pear Soup (gluten free, vegan)

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I feel like all squash are just astonishingly beautiful. I love their strange shapes and vibrant hues, and I adore their creamy texture and sweet flavour. Every squash has something unique to offer and they somehow seem confident in that knowledge, if a fruit can be said to be confident.

Butternut squash knows it makes your soup crazy good. It just has to! Some squash are great for salads, others for stews, but butternut – she can do it all.

Besides featuring this beautiful plant, this soup is literally the easiest dish to pull together. If you decide to make it on a weeknight, you won’t be having dinner at 9pm (unless that’s your thing, of course), and if you’re not in and out of the kitchen in 40 minutes or less, something’s gone wrong! And since everything is going to be pureed anyway, you don’t need to worry about chopping your veggies into uniform pieces. They should be similar in size so that they cook evenly, but the rest doesn’t really matter.

To make things even easier, peel and chop your squash ahead of time and keep it in the fridge until you’re ready to use, so the rest is just a quick dice job and you’re done.

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A Backpacker’s Guide to Healthy Eating: Volume 2

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If you had asked me before this trip where my top two most anticipated countries were for food, I would have answered with France and Italy. Italy did not disappoint – the gelato, my goodness the gelato! – but France on the other hand… well, I’ll get to that. If I could summarize my gastronomic experience in France in a word, it would have to be unaccommodating.

Soy milk (don’t even bother asking for almond) for your coffee? Are you kidding?

Lactose free? Never heard of it.

Gluten free? Get out of here.

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Spiced Zucchini Nut Bread (gluten free)

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It’s a summertime cliche, I know, but at this time of the year most people are up to their ears in zucchini. Much to my chagrin, I don’t currently have space for a garden, but I still choose to make the most of the zucchini glut by frequent trips to my local farmer’s market. Zucchini noodles are probably my favourite way to use them – add a little homemade pesto  and some diced tomato and you’ve got a meal on your hands – but I’ve been inspired to keep developing my own baking recipes, and zucchini is a star in this regard. I’m sure you’ve heard this before, but truly, adding zucchini to bread or muffins does not make them taste like zucchini! All it does is add incredible moisture and increase the nutritional value. Win win! Continue reading

Tropical Carrot Muffins with Cashew Lime Frosting (gluten free)

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At least once a week the scent of freshly baked cookies, muffins, or cake wafts through my house. Nothing beats freshly baked treats, especially when you don’t have the option of just popping over to the local bakery to satisfy a craving. Would I kill for a croissant? Dear god yes. So you may be wondering why I haven’t posted a recipe like this until now, and I confess… I was too afraid of disappointing you! Everyone has their favourite, go-to recipes, and I’m no exception. Since removing gluten from my diet I’ve found many wonderful recipes that have made their way into my regular rotation, but I haven’t spent much time working on my own. The more baking I do, however, the more comfortable I begin to feel with what I consider to be the science of baking (versus the art of cooking – something I am much more at ease with). So rather than staying in my comfort zone, which is, well, comfortable, I decided to take a risk and create something just for you. I hope you enjoy eating them as much as I enjoyed creating them. Continue reading