Tag Archives: cacao

Kitch in the kitchen, no kitchari yum great for these cool mornings

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Kitchari.171-150x150Yes you are right, I am missing my yoga retreat breakfast of Kitchari, so I have just made some, It is easy. Kitchari is a delicious and nutritive whole food from India that is known for its properties to detox the body and balance the three doshas (constitutions): Vata, Pitta and Kapha. This ayurvedic dish is used by yogis who want to cleanse the body and soul in a gentle manner, kitchari supply enough nutrients while removes toxins stored in bodily tissues and restores systemic balance.
Ayurveda believes that all healing begins with the digestive tract, and kitchari can give it a much-needed rest from constantly processing different foods while providing essential nutrients. Its mixture of spices is believed to kindle the digestive fire, the Ayurvedic description for your innate digestive power, which can be weakened by poor food combinations.
Kitchari is made with mung beans or lentils, basmati rice or barley, seasonal vegetables, ghee, and spices.
Add whatever seasonal vegetables you have on hand to complete the dish. Consider zuchini, burdock root, carrots, kale, spinach, sweet potato. The key is to use what’s available locally because Ayurveda is linked to the natural transition of the seasons. Go light on the salt in this recipe, allowing the natural flavours of vegetable stock.
Kitchari tastes like a cross between a creamy rice cereal and a light dal, or lentil soup. If it is a cold, blustery day or you are feeling under the weather, a steaming bowl of this classic Indian comfort food can both warm up your bones and restore sagging energy.
Ingredients:
1-cup basmati rice (I used black rice today as that is what I had!)
½ cup mung dal or lentils
2 cloves crushed garlic
2 teaspoons grated/minced ginger
1 chopped medium onion
3 teaspoons kitchari spice mix (cumin seeds, tumeric, mustard seeds, ginger, garam masala, natural mineral salt)
2 tablespoons ghee (clarified butter)
6 cups water
1-2 cups chopped vegetables
Cooking instructions:
Wash rice and mung dal and soak overnight
Drains soak water.
In a medium saucepan warm the ghee, saute the onion, garlic and ginger, add the kitchari spice mixture and sauté for one-two minutes. Add rice and mung beans and sauté for another couple of minutes.  Add 6 cups of water and bring to a boil. When kitchari has come to a boil reduce the heat to medium-low, cover an cook until it is tender, approximate 30-45 minutes. Add vegetables to your kitchari: the longer cooking such as carrots halfway through the coking and vegetables that cook faster such as leafy greens near the end. Add more water if needed.
Garnish with coriander and fresh grated ginger if you like and ENJOY

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Lust after Lavender

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Lavender is the star of the herbal world. Regarded as one of the most beneficial and versatile herbs for therapeutic and cosmetic purposes, the ancient secrets of lavender are out. Here are ten reasons to surround yourself in all things lavender.

1. It rejuvenates the skin

Lavender’s antiseptic and antifungal properties have assisted in the treatment of pesky skin problems for centuries. Its balancing action helps clear acne, prevent tissue degeneration, calm psoriasis, and aid the formation of scar tissue. As it contains a high percentage of linalool, naturopaths also use it to promote the healing of wounds, cuts, burns, and sunburn.

2. It strengthens hair

Keep tresses glossy and follicles strong through regular massages with lavender oil. Lavender is found in numerous hair care products, and for good reason – it’s known to balance scalp oils and rejuvenate the hair from root to tip.

3. It smoothes cellulite

Beautiful legs are achievable with a little flower power. Lavender improves circulation, tones the skin, prevents stretch marks and dispels fluid retention, thus helping with the appearance of cellulite.

4. It eases anxiety and insomnia

Scientific evidence suggests aromatherapy with lavender may be as effective in soothing the nervous system as some pharmaceutical relaxants. It’s renowned for promoting relaxation and improving sleep quality, and is even used by herbalists to ease mood swings and depression.

5. It relieves headache and pain

Lavender is famous among aromatherapists as the oil of choice for pain relief. Gentle massage with lavender oil not only melts away body-tension, it is an effective way to relieve pain from headache, sore muscles, aching joints, rheumatism and sprains.

6. It helps clear respiratory disorders

Don’t spend another sleepless night coughing. Lavender eases muscle spasms, fights infection, dulls pain, and most importantly helps you sleep. It is extensively used for a number of respiratory problems including coughing, throat infections, asthma, sinus congestion, bronchitis, whooping cough, and laryngitis.

7. It aids digestion

Your tummy has as many nerves as your brain so it’s no surprise lavender can calm the d

igestive system as it can calm the mind. Both an antispasmodic and a sedative, lavender can work wonders on ‘nervous stomach’ and cramps, as well as aid indigestion by stimulating the production of gastric juices and bile.

8. It helps clear respiratory disorders

Don’t spend another sleepless night coughing. Lavender eases

muscle spasms, fights infection, dulls pain, and most importantly helps you sleep. It is extensively used for a number of respiratory problems including coughing, throat infections, asthma, sinus congestion, bronchitis, whooping cough, and laryngitis.

9. It boosts immunity

Regular use of lavender oil has been shown to boost resistance to disease by lowering the flow of the stress hormone Cortisol. Cortisol lowers your immunity, which makes you more susceptible to colds and influenza during stressful times.

10. It’s soothing and calming

The scent of lavender brings about a sense of calm. Research has shown that lavender has soothing and even slight sedative effects when inhaled.

Lavender

 

Looking for the dead?

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Not as strange as it sounds. Many of have been overseas, interstate. Simply not around when a friend or beloved family member has departed this Earth. If you are in Australia there is a fabulous service offered by Oz Burials. I gave a small donation via Paypal as they actually offer this service for free. However they do ask that if you can, give just a little to help them keep up this amazing service.Nans gravesite curley_wa_sc2 curley_wa_scI have subsequently discovered that quite a few people I know have accessed their services in the past and have like me found them to be amazing. No longer lost! They give you a surprising amount of information

Home made body butter

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Body Butter

Makes 2 1/2 to 3 cups whipped butter.

  • 1 cup organic raw shea butter
  • 1/2 cup coconut oil (solid)
  • 1/2 cup almond oil (liquid)
  • 20 drops of essential oils of your choosing

1. Melt shea butter and coconut oil in the top of a double boiler. Remove from heat and let cool for 30 minutes.

2. Stir in almond oil and essential oils of your choosing.*

3, Place oil mixture in freezer to chill.

4. Wait until oils start to partially solidify then whip until a butter-like consistency is achieved.

4. Place in clean, glass jar and enjoy! A little goes a long way.

*Not all essential oils are skin friendly or child friendly. Please do your research before adding.

TIPS:

1. You can use what ever oils you wish, just make sure you keep the ratio 75% solid to 25% liquid.Clearly avoid oils and butters you may be allergic too.  Just make sure you replace a solid for a solid and a liquid for a liquid.

2. The chilling step is crucial. If you don’t chill it properly, it won’t whip or stay whipped. About 20 minutes in the freezer usually does the trick for this batch. Make sure you scrape down the sides before mixing.

3. It does not have to be refrigerated.

4. I do not know the exact shelf life but I know it will keep at least a few months, mind you mine never last that long..

5. The body butter melts as it goes on and gets a little oily but absorbs beautifully, quickly and leaves your skin very soft.

6. Coconut oil and almond oil are quite easy to locate at your local health food store or supermarket

7. This recipe has been tested many times. If you don’t follow the recipe, you will not get the same results.

8. Many people ask for exact amounts of essential oils. I start with at least 20 drops of what ever oil I want to use and just increase slowly until I am happy with how it smells.

Super food – Raw cacao

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The Taste of Healthy  Cacao Beans. cacao
Cacao was the ‘Food of the Gods & Goddesses’ and the Mexican Mayans drank cacao chocolate drinks to maintain their vigour and valued the bean so highly that it was used as currency.
The Kuna Indians of the Panamian Islands of San Blas  who consume raw cacao in significantly high amounts, have extremely low blood pressure that doesn’t climb with age.

Raw cacao is possibly the best food source of magnesium which relieves stress and relaxes muscles and also maintains healthy heart and brain vitality.

– Raw cacao contains an array of natural neurochemicals such as tryptophan (the feel good chemical in serotonin production), anandamide (the bliss chemical), phenylethylmine… (the love chemical).

– Adding dairy, sugar or heat treating (like most commercial chocolates do) destroys most of the amazing healing properties of cacao.

Raw cacao is classified as a SUPERFOOD.
Raw cacao has a high antioxidant rating of  95,500 (on the ORAC scale) – which is 21 times more than green tea and 7 times more than dark chocolate.

Raw Cacao has over 360% more antioxidants than regular heated cacao

Raw cacao is possibly the best food source of magnesium which relieves stress and relaxes muscles and also maintains healthy heart and brain vitality.

Raw cacao contains an array of natural neurochemicals such as tryptophan (the feel good chemical in serotonin production), anandamide (the bliss chemical), phenylethylmine… (the love chemical).

Adding dairy, sugar or heat treating (like most commercial chocolates do) destroys most of the amazing healing properties of cacao! So don’t…..

Bliss Balls, Perfect to

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Bliss Balls, Perfect to

Make a batch of bliss balls this weekend. These are my latest guilt free obsession. Experiment with different nuts like cashews, almonds, pecans and walnuts, or a combination of all, tuning the recipe to your preferred tastes. You can also sub in carob powder instead of cacao, and go crazy experimenting with different fruits, nuts and seeds to make your bliss balls satisfyingly crunchy and chunky or delightfully smooth. They keep well in the fridge.

INGREDIENTS

1 cup pitted medjool dates
1/2 cup almonds or any other nuts
1/2 cup cashews or any other nuts
1/3 cup goji berries
1/3 cup raw organic cacao powder
1/3 cup coconut oil
1/2 cup shredded coconut

Extras
1/2 orange, juice only
Zest of an orange
1/4 cup pistachios
cacao nibs
raw pumpkin seeds
sesame seeds
Mayvers all natural Cacao and Hazelnut spread

TO MAKE

Soak the dates in warm water for 15–20 minutes to soften.

While the dates are soaking, add the nuts, flour, shredded coconut and cacao to a food processor and mix until fine crumbs remain. Add the dates and process again.

Transfer mixture to a medium-size bowl and drizzle in the coconut oil, mixing with a wooden spoon until evenly combined. If the mixture is too dry to stick together at this stage, add the juice of half an orange, a little water or more coconut oil until it is moist enough to roll into balls. If you’re adding goji berries, chopped pistachios, cacao nibs or pumpkin seeds, now is the time to mix them in when you’re adding extra moisture.

Prepare a baking or other flat tray with baking paper. Use a spoon to help you gather mixture to roll into a bite-size ball. Roll into crushed pistachio dust, extra shredded coconut, cacao powder or sesame seeds for an array of different coatings. Let set in the fridge before transferring to an airtight container.