Tuesday, 29 April 2014

Top 10 Favorite Nuts & Seeds - #2: Sesame Seeds

Hello there! Well it's plus 10 and sunny today! I think spring might finally be here…shhh don't tell winter or it might come back.

Today I am going to share with you another favorite seed of mine!

Sesame Seeds

Health Benefits
  • There are white and black sesame seeds.  I have always been more familiar with white but purchased some black at a bulk store recently.  I have since learned that black seeds are used to make sesame oil and are often used in Chinese medicine for their healing properties.  Both White and Black are excellent for you!
  • Excellent source of CALCIUM aka. good for your bones! Trust me you don't need to drink milk to get your calcium.  Calcium is found in many other foods such as: almonds, spinach, rhubarb and SESAME SEEDS to name a few. 1 Tbsp of sesame seeds can provide as much as 88mg of calcium.  1/4 cup of sesame seeds in equivalent to over 1 cup of milk in terms of calcium content.
  • Source of Magnesium, iron, vitamin B1 and zinc to name a few.  I could go on and on...
  • Excellent source of dietary fibre
  • Great source of copper which can provide relief for rheumatoid arthritis 
  • Can reduce blood pressure when taken in large amounts

Common Uses
  • Sesame seeds are the main ingredient in tahini which is a delicious paste that can be used in salad dressings, dips or spreads
  • Toasted and sprinkled on top of salads
  • I often use sesame seeds in baking (muffins, cookies or energy balls)
  • I use sesame oil in asian inspired dishes such as ginger/sesame salad dressings or vermicelli noodle rice wraps!


Sesame Seeds can be purchased in most grocery stores in the bulk section or at specialty bulk stores.  I hope I have inspired you to incorporate more sesame seeds into your diet!



Friday, 25 April 2014

Life Update

Hello! Okay I went away AGAIN...I am known for taking lots of trips…what can I say I like to  travel and see friends and family! This trip took Kevin, Kona (my dog) and I out to British Columbia to visit my sister and brother in law.  My parents and 2 brothers were there as well. It was great to visit with my sister since she is 8 months pregnant. I am so excited to be an Auntie very soon!!  Road trips are always fun - it is a 20 hour drive which we split into 2 days. Canada is a very beautiful country which I try not to take for granted since we drive across it so much.

Here are a few recent photos...
Chocolate Cupcakes with Nutella Cream Cheese Frosting that I made for Jenna's baby shower

Exploring the woods around Jenna & Mike's

I took maternity photos for them! Fun stuff

Baby shower that Jenna's friends hosted - she got some good loot!

Myself, Jenna and Mom

Simple dinner I made last night - Tom Kha Gai which is a Thai Coconut Soup.  I adapted this recipe by omitting the chicken, adding red curry paste, using ginger instead of galangal and adding basil and green onions.  Soup-er yummy!! Pardon the pun.
For the salad I stuck with the asian theme.  Mixed greens, purple cabbage, carrots, green onions, sesame seeds (white & black). Dressing: Olive oil, splash of sesame oil, rice vinegar, garlic, fresh grated ginger & pepper.
I love making homemade salad dressings - super simple, yummy and WAY better for your then store bought.

Since I last posted I started a 21 day meditation - okay I may have missed a few days in a row and I'm still getting used to shutting my brain off completely (seems impossible right now but practice makes perfect right?) Overall I'm enjoying taking 20 minutes per day to focus on myself, silence the brain and relax!

I am back to work getting the restaurant ready to re-open next Thursday!

I should be back to more regular posting and maybe even attempting some outfit photos now that the weather is warming up.

Have a FABULOUS weekend everyone!


Thursday, 10 April 2014

Top 10 Favorite Nuts & Seeds - Week 1: Chia Seeds

Happy Thursday! 

I was just flipping through one of my new favorite cookbooks - Oh She Glows and was inspired while reading the Nuts & Seeds section.  I incorporate various nuts and seeds into my diet on a daily basis and thought it would be fun to do a 10 week post, each week featuring a differed nut or seed.  Each post will include the health benefits, what I use them for and recipes.  

I hope you enjoy!

Chia Seeds

Health Benefits

  • Excellent source of Omega 3 Fatty Acids
  • Source of Fibre
  • Contains: Iron, calcium, magnesium and phosphorus 
  • Source of vegetarian protein
  • Helps regulate appetite, sleep and improve mood 
  • Chia does NOT have to be ground like flax to receive health benefits

Common Uses
  • We use 1 Tbsp. of Chia Seeds every morning in our Green Smoothie
  • Thickening agent - Chia seeds expand/gel when mixed with liquid so they are great for making puddings
  • Use as an egg substitute in vegan baking - Mix 1 Tbsp. of ground chia seeds and 3 Tbsp. water, let sit for 5 minutes and viola you have the equivalent of 1 egg!
  • Sprinkle into cookies, muffins, cakes or any other baking
  • Sprinkle onto salads or pastas


Chia can be purchased at most grocery stores in the bulk section, at Costco, or at health food stores.  I hope you enjoy chia seeds as much as I do or will be inspired to incorporate them into your diet! 


Sources: Chia Seeds Benefits: Huffington Post, Oh She Glows

Tuesday, 8 April 2014

It's April, I went to Meixco and I'm dreaming of gardens!

Hello lovely readers of my blog! I took a little hiatus and went to MEXICO last week! As you know I love to travel so it was very exciting to explore a tiny party of Mexico: a country I have never been before.  This post will be a few pics from the trip as well as other random things that are going on/inspiring me right now!

1. MEXICO - I loved it! I stayed at an all inclusive for 1 week with Kevin and the Morrison family (my lovely bosses/wonderful friends!) I have never lived it up all inclusive style before and I have to say I enjoyed it.  The ease of not having to think much while on vacation is a nice concept when you truly want to RELAX! Everything is taken care of for you- food, drinks etc.  Don't get me wrong I do still enjoy adventurous and spontaneous holidays where you are winging it and are unsure what the day will bring however I would go back to an all inclusive again for an "easy" holiday if the situation presented itself.

Mexican food is one of my favourites and the resort had an amazing selection of fresh, delicious Mexican dishes! I loved the people and would defiantly go back to Meixco in the future to experience more.

See that thing out in the ocean? It's a WHALE! We were pumped to have this amazing
sighting while on a snorkelling trip in Banderas Bay. A mom and two calves were
swimming near the shore and we got to watch in awe as they played around in the
ocean for about 20 minutes and best of all saw the mother whale breach!!


2. I saw Jian Ghomeshi (Q) live in Winnipeg! My favorite radio program and host! I joke he is my man voice crush because his voice is just so smooth and soothing! It was thrill for me to experience a live show in Winnipeg at the Burton Cummings Theatre.  We got to see interviews with Randy Bachman, Jennifer Jones Gold Medal Curling team, Chantal Kreviazuk and Raine Maida and Tegan & Sara performed!
I think he's looking directly at me in the picture ;)

3. I am dreaming of a warm summer evening spent sipping a glass of wine in a cozy chair in my yard!  My yard could use some work and here are some pictures that are inspiring me. 

I just want to be surrounded by flowers and vegetation! 


Wednesday, 26 March 2014

This weeks food highlights

Good Morning! 
I thought today I would get back to sharing some of my favorite meals from this past week with you!

Veggie Stir Fry with Homemade Peanut Sauce & Baked Spring Rolls - I bought Egg roll wrappers in the refrigerated  section at Superstore and filled them with sautéed cabbage, carrots, green onion  & water chestnuts. Seriously yummy!

Okay I bought ANOTHER new cookbook - 'Oh She Glows' is an amazing Vegan cookbook - she also has a great blog! I made this yummy Apple Pie Oatmeal the other morning

Greek Salad & Oil Free Baked Falafel Bites from the Oh She Glows cookbook

A favorite around our house - Homemade Pizza! I love my cast iron pizza pan


Monday, 17 March 2014

The perfect veggie burger...

I am determined to find the perfect veggie burger recipe! I have tried many different recipes and have yet to find a go to recipe - there is always something missing.  My brother Chris and friend Aislinn came over last week and we made 3 different recipes at once so we could compare them.  Here are a few pictures from our recipe trial.  Aislinn is vegan so we opted to make the burgers vegan!

1) Our Perfect Veggie Burger - Oh She Glows
2)  Black Bean & Quinoa Burgers - Love & Lemons
3) Spicy Chickpea Veggie Burgers - Running on Real Food

All the burgers were yummy but I still haven't found "The One!" I will keep experimenting and putting my own spin on recipes and I will let you know when I have perfected it! 


Tuesday, 11 March 2014

Green Smoothie

I have been drinking green smoothies for about a year now and they have become a daily staple breakfast item for both Kevin and I. 

I have always loved fruit smoothies…I mean who doesn't?! So refreshing and delicious! I started drinking fruit smoothies with protein powder in them for breakfast a few years ago and really enjoyed the simplicity.  Wake up, make a smoothie, take it with me to work and sip on it throughout the morning.  Adding protein powder to my smoothie makes it more filling and allows me to just have a smoothie for breakfast and feel full until lunch time.  

My Mom got onto to Green Smoothies through my cousin Katie.  She purchased a Blend Tec and started making them part of her daily routine.  Safe to say they have changed her life and improved her energy levels! Slowly but surely I got more inventive with my morning smoothie and started adding more greens and viola the green smoothie was born into our house.  I couldn't image my life without this green stuff! I love working out and then coming home and having my smoothie - its delicious, satisfying, healthy and makes me feel so amazing! Having 5+ servings of fruit and veggies before lunch is an amazing way to kick start your day.

We don't stick to a recipe we use what we have - these are our typical smoothie items

Arbonne Vanilla Protein Powder
Chia Seeds
Frozen Fruit (I prefer mango or pineapple)
Fresh Ginger 
Lemon (1/4 of lemon for a blender full)

We sometimes will add pear, apple, cucumber, avocado or celery - just depends on what we have and feel like! Oh and cinnamon is a delicious addition as well.

Do you like smoothies?