dates

Berry Breakfast Bars

Don't be fooled by the title of this recipe. These bars can be eaten for breakfast, as well as any time of day or occasion. I wrote this recipe a while ago and had not posted it, so I thought it would be fitting to share it for 4th of July weekend since it's colorful and festive. 

I sampled these bars out at several events the past month, and people went crazy for them. So simple, yet so flavorful. I'm all about making food easy to prepare while really emphasizing on taste and eye appeal. Luckily, with living organic whole foods, there's not much work to do because it's so pretty and packed with deliciousness. 

Ingredients

2 cups medjool dates, pitted
½ cup gluten-free oats
½ cup raw sunflower seeds or nut/seed of choice
1 teaspoon cinnamon
Juice of ½ lemon
Pinch of sea salt
1 cup mixed fresh berries, chopped

Procedure

  1. Place all ingredients in food processor, except fresh berries. Process until ingredients are well combined and mixture sticks together when pressed with fingers.
  2. Transfer to a parchment lined dish such as a pyrex or cake tin. Press mixture down into pan to flatten out. Here you can decide what thickness of bars you want. Place in freezer for about 20 minutes.
  3. While bottom layer is setting, place mixed berries in food processor and pulse a few times to coarsely chop them up. You may leave a few whole ones out for decoration. Spread over date mixture and slice into bars.

I hope you are inspired to make this recipe for your celebrations this weekend. Please share your pretty creations with me on social media with #apurifiedlife, I love seeing them.

Recipe was created for Oh My Drifter blog and photographed by the talented Micaela Hoo.  

Happy 4th of July!

x,

Giovanna

Captures of Yoga & Superfood Smoothies Workshop

What a wonderful weekend. We were so happy to share smoothies and knowledge with everyone at the Yoga & Superfood Smoothies Workshop on Saturday. There was some great Q & A and hopefully everyone is trying out their new recipes this week! We're grateful for Dave Ford's yoga practice, our amazing helper, Maddy Smith, the beautiful well-lit space (aMuse Art Gallery & Meeting Place) in the Mission, and everyone who brought their good energy. It was pretty cool to do yoga in an art gallery. Let us know if you'd like to see a similar event, we'd be happy to host if there's interest - contact Regina at reginafelice@apurifiedlife.com

xx

Captures of Valentine’s Day Chocolate Making Workshop

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There’s no such thing as getting your hands dirty when it comes to chocolate. But if there were, I guess you could say that’s how we spent our Valentine’s Day. At the Chocolate Making Workshop we made rose and fig truffles, chai spiced chocolate mousse, and dark chocolate bark. Everyone got to build their own dark chocolate bark with nuts, seeds, fruit, and superfood powders. There was a lot of love in the air (and in the chocolate) on Saturday! We’re grateful for everyone’s great energy and company.

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Pumpkin Spice Smoothie

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It's about that time. Pumpkin everything! Although I prefer starting my day off with greens, today I decided to switch up my green smoothie for a non-green but still nutrient dense smoothie. Pumpkin spice came to mind. And it was perfect.

Pumpkins are not only delicious and great to bake/cook with, but they also provide good nutrition. They are high in fiber, high in antioxidants, and low in calories which provide health benefits such as: aid weight loss, support immunity, support vision health, and reduce risk of cardiovascular and heart disease.

Here is my version of a pumpkin spice smoothie. Protein is optional, but it is great for stabilizing blood sugar and keeping you full longer.

Ingredients

1 heaping scoop of protein powder (I used brown rice protein powder, unflavored)

1/2 cup pumpkin puree (unsweetened, homemade or canned)

2 medjool dates, pitted (can use a banana to sweeten instead)

3/4 cup coconut water (can use nut milk)

1 Tablespoon sunflower seed butter (can use any nut/seed butter)

2 teaspoons vanilla extractIMG_7766

1 teaspoon maca powder (optional)

1/4 teaspoon cinnamon

1/8 teaspoon nutmeg

1/8 teaspoon cloves

1/8 teaspoon ground ginger

6 ice cubes

Procedure

  • Place all ingredients in blender and blend until smooth. Serve.
  • Garnish with coconut flakes, nuts, seeds, or more cinnamon.

Makes 1 serving

 

 

How to Make Almond Milk [Video]

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Almond milk is a delicious and healthy alternative to cow's milk. It's fresh, light, and dairy-fee, which supports those with lactose intolerant or dairy sensitivity. Making your own at home is both fun and more nutritious because it doesn't contain additives, artificial sweeteners, and preservatives that the store-bought almond milk does.

Almond milk is low in calories, and high in vitamins, minerals, and healthy fats. Making it at home is very simple and often money saving. In 10 minutes, you will have fresh almond milk to add to your oats, smoothies, sauces, or simply drink as is.

Plain almond milk has a great rich flavor, but you can use a natural sweetener to give it additional sweetness and flavor. I love mine plain.

 

You will need

Blender

Nut milk bag or cheese cloth

Large bowl or pitcher

 

Ingredients

1 cup raw almonds (soaked overnight in filtered water and drained)

5 cups filtered water

Flavoring options

1/2-1 Tablespoon vanilla extract

2 pitted dates

1-2 teaspoons cinnamon

pinch of sea salt

 

Procedure 

  1. Soak almonds overnight in filtered water. Soaking overnight makes them more digestible and increases nutritional value. If you forget to soak them overnight or don't have much time, soaking them for at least an hour is good enough.
  2. Drain almonds and rinse well.
  3. Add almonds and water to blender and blend until smooth, about 3-5 minutes.
  4. Place nut milk bag or cheesecloth in bowl and pour mixture through it. Gently squeeze to strain until all liquid is extracted from solids. Enjoy!
Homemade almond milk

Superfood Ice Popsicles

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Don't be intimidated by the color, these are sweet and refreshing on a sunny day. What makes these popsicles so great is spirulina powder. Spirulina is a blue-green algae that is super nutrient dense. It contains protein, vitamins, and minerals that provide great benefit to your health. Spirulina is good for the skin (eczema, acne, rashes), boosts energy, supports the immune system, helps fight depression, lowers bad cholesterol, and helps prevent diseases such as diabetes and cancer. When purchasing spirulina, make sure to buy organic and from a trusted brand.

Ingredients

1/2 cup greek yogurt (I used full-fat)

2 Medjool dates, pitted

2 tsp spirulina powder

1/3 cup almond milk

2 tsp chia seeds

Procedure

  1. Place all ingredients except chia seeds in a blender and blend until smooth (make sure dates are fully blended or you'll have chunks).
  2. Place 1 teaspoon of chia seeds into each mold (you can also mix it in the mixture but I chose to put it at the bottom for the visual effect). Pour the yogurt mixture into molds and freeze for at least 4 hours.

Makes 2

Almond Truffles

Almond-truffles

Yet another great way to use up your leftover almond pulp after making almond milk. If you don't have almond pulp, you can use almond flour instead. Ingredients

~2 cups Almond pulp, dried out* (or almond flour)

15 medjool dates, pitted

3 Tablespoons melted coconut oil

1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon ground ginger (optional)

zest of 1/2 lemon

Procedure

*To dry out almond pulp: Line a sheet tray with parchment paper and spread out pulp on top. Place in oven and turn the oven light on (oven should stay off). Leave in oven with oven light on for about 12 hours or until completely dried out. I place it in the oven in the afternoon and check it the next morning. It should be completely dried out.

  1. Place all ingredients in a food processor and pulse until dates are chopped up and mixture sticks together when pressed. If mixture is too dry, add some water (start with 1 Tablespoon). If mixture is too wet, add more almond flour. Taste and adjust flavoring if needed.
  2. Roll out mixture into small balls (about 1 inch in diameter) and place in the freezer until ready to serve.

Raw Brownies

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These raw brownies are simple and delicious. They are gluten-free, dairy-free, and refined sugar-free. They are sweetened with natural sugar from fresh dates. Dates are high in sugar and should be consumed in moderation, but they are a great alternative to refined sugars. Just one is enough to curb a sweet craving, they are a great afternoon snack. Besides their sweetness, they are also a good source of fiber, some B vitamins, magnesium, potassium, and copper.

This is a simple recipe that you can use as a base and add toppings/spices/flavors of your liking. I almost never make the same recipe. I'm always experimenting with different ingredients. My favorites are grated ginger, lemon zest and juice, vanilla extract, protein powder, orange zest, spices, and different nuts and seeds. Anything goes. Get creative.

Ingredients

1 cup medjool dates, pitted

1 cups raw nuts (walnuts, almonds, pecans)

1/4 cup raw cacao powder

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon, optional

pinch of sea salt

Procedure

  1. Place all ingredients in a food processor (can use blender but you will have to move things around with a spatula throughout the process) until dates are finely chopped and mixture sticks together when pressed with fingers. If mixture doesn't stick and is too dry, add more dates.
  2. Press into a parchment-lined baking dish and place in freezer for about 20 minutes.
  3. Cut into 2 x 2 inch squares and enjoy!

Store in refrigerator.