Poppy Seed Squares and German Culture!

February 22, 2016

A big thank you to Reagan Smith and the students of  Dr. John G. Egnatoff school for having me come into their classroom to discuss German Culture.  Three students went to the trouble of making Strudel, a traditional German dish!  Delicious!  I particularly enjoyed the many personal thank you cards sent by the students.

In addition to German history, pictures, and discussion, we looked at two of the healthy foods that Germany has given us, poppy seeds and sauerkraut.   My German mother, who passed in 2013, was famous for her strudels and poppy seed dishes.  Growing up, her family made a dessert from ground poppy seeds and sugar sprinkled over cooked macaroni!  Poppy seeds are loaded with calcium (127 mg. in 1 tbsp.), high in fiber(1.7 grams in 1 tbsp),  as well as significant amounts of magnesium, phosphorus, and potassium.  The following recipe is what I served to allow the students to have a taste of poppy seeds.  Of course the taste of sauerkraut was nowhere near as popular as the squares!


Original recipe  found in Harrowsmith, I’ve changed the white flour and sugar to whole foods, and revised it to be gluten and/or dairy free. These healthy little morsels made with whole grain flour and natural sugars, are tasty and nutritious!
1 3/4 cup whole grain spelt flour (use buckwheat flour for gluten-free with 1 1/2 tbsp. guar gum)
1 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. baking soda
1 cup coconut sugar (use less if desired)
1/2 tsp. unrefined sea salt
1/2 cup butter, melted (use coconut oil for dairy-free)
1/3 cup honey
2 organic eggs
2 tbsp. unsweetened Almond Breeze, or milk of choice
1 tsp. vanilla
1 cup unsweetened organic  desiccated coconut
1/2 cup poppy seeds
1. In a medium sized bowl, place flour, baking powder, baking soda, coconut sugar and salt. Stir to combine.
2. In a small saucepan on medium heat, melt the butter, add the honey and bring to a liquid.
3. In a small bowl, place eggs, vanilla, milk, butter and honey and stir to combine.
4. Add liquid ingredients to dry ingredients, and stir well to combine.
5. Add coconut and poppy seed and stir to combine.
6. Place in an oiled glass 9 x 13 pan.
7. Place in preheated oven of 350 F.
8. Bake for 15 minutes, turn heat to 325 F. and bake for another 5 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean.
9. Cool on a wire rack. Cut into squares to serve.



Potato Soup take 2!

January 13, 2016

Although the recipe on Potato Soup this morning on the blog is now correct, the original did have an error – no potatoes! Thanks to friends for prompt emails.

Please check the blog or add 1 1/2 pounds of potatoes, diced to the ingredient list.

Thank you!

Potato Soup – Comfort Food for January!

January 13, 2016

This very easy to make soup warms the soul on a January day.   It is simple and quick, and freezes very well.  My favorite potato soup is the Mom’s Potato Leek Soup on page 184 in Eat Away Illness, (available at http://www.healingwithnutrition.ca)   but I often do not have leeks on hand when a craving for potato soup hits!  I used my chemical free homegrown potatoes, carrots, and onions, and homemade chicken broth and dried dill.  I have not mastered the art of growing celery just yet, although I have tried.  It is really a healthy vegetable soup, but the creamy potato texture really comes through.   It is gluten and dairy free, and there are no grains or flour used for thickening; just blend some of the batch and Voila!  very creamy.   This batch makes about 6 large servings.

Potato Soup 3 (Custom)I served this soup with my homemade Ezekiel crackers and slices of Goat Feta cheese.


2 carrots, chopped fine or shredded

2 ribs celery, chopped fine

1 large onion, chopped to fine dice

1 1/2 pounds potatoes, diced.  Leave skins on.

1/4 cup coconut oil, ghee or organic butter if diet allows

4 cups chicken stock

1 cup coconut milk (I use homemade.   Recipe in Eat Away Illness).

salt and pepper to taste

red pepper flakes to taste

2 tbsp. fresh chopped dill or 1 tbsp. dried

  1.  Cook veggies in coconut oil or butter in a large pot, uncovered, on medium heat, stirring occasionally, until beginning to brown.
  2. Add stock, spices, (except fresh dill) and simmer until veggies are tender.
  3. Blend small batches if desired for a creamier version.
  4. Add milk, bring to simmer and adjust seasonings and add fresh dill if using.

Potato Soup 4 (Custom) I like to freeze individual servings in wide mouth glass jars, with the lids off to prevent cracking, and then replace cap and label when soup is frozen.  To make the quick Ezekiel crackers, purchase Ezekiel wraps, brush with coconut oil and cut into desired shapes.   Bake at 350 to 400F for 5 to 10 minutes or until lightly browned.   Cool in pan. Remember to take a jar of this soup out in the morning before you rush off to work and a quick lunch awaits!  Just add a few cut up raw veggies and the wholesome crackers and Feta cheese and you have a balanced meal.



Date Filled Almond Cookies, a great Christmas treat!

December 5, 2015

Everyone wants to have sweet treats at Christmastime, right?   Here is the answer to a decadent cookie that not only tastes great, but is very nutrient dense; in other words, REALLY HEALTHY!!!  Made with freshly ground whole raw almonds adds the all important essential fat to our diet, as well as fiber and a host of minerals.  Have them for breakfast!  I believe I posted this recipe about 2 years ago, but continue to get requests, so here it is again.

You can make the filling ahead of time and refrigerate it or freeze it.   The cookies are very easy to make, but need extra care in baking, as they burn very easily.  This recipe comes from my book “What Your Doctor Doesn’t Tell You About Foods, book two.”  I have no idea where the original idea came from, or how much I have adapted it.


Date Filled Almond Cookies 4 (Custom)

Date Filled Almond Cookies

4 cups finely ground almonds

1/3 cup melted butter or ghee, cooled to room temperature

1/4 tsp. baking soda

1/4 tsp. unrefined sea salt

1/2 cup liquid honey, cooled to room temperature

  1.   Mix all ingredients together in a medium bowl.
  2.   Roll into small balls, or drop by teaspoon onto oiled or parchment lined cookie sheets.
  3.   If the dough is firm, you may flatten the cookies with the back of an oiled teaspoon.
  4.   Bake at 300 F. until golden brown, anywhere from 5 to 10 minutes.   Do not over bake.
  5.   Cool on wire rack.


1 lb. pitted dates

1/3 cup water, or more to make desired consistency.

  1.   Place water and dates in a saucepan and gently heat, stirring often, until a paste.
  2.   Spread between two cookies.

For great stocking stuffers this Christmas, purchase one of the above books for $20, or download it for $7.99 at http://www.healingwithnutrition.ca.


“The Good Life”

November 23, 2015

Has anyone read this great book by Helen and Scott Nearing?  A wonderful true account of two people living a simple life, growing their own food.   A lot of good information on gardening and storing food.

One comment I particularly liked was about the nutrition of raw sunflower seeds:

“The people of East Europe, who are noted for their good teeth, consume an enormous amount of sunflower and squash seeds, cracking shells with their teeth, and thus presumably getting some of the minerals contained in the shells as well as in the kernels.   Whole, entire, raw seeds, with the protein of the germ, the fat in the oil, the starch in the kernel and the minerals distributed through the protective covering, will provide a fairly rounded diet….”  (page 124, The Good Life).

I also liked the description of why whole grain flour is so much more nutritious that white flour, stored on the shelf in supermarkets.

“For a long time, humans stored their grains whole, as they came from the threshing floor.   The grain, if dry, kept indefinitely, and because of the hard shell which covered each kernel, lost little of its nutritive value.   Wholemeal flour, however, will not keep.   Oxidation alters its chemical character.   The oil in the kernel becomes rancid or evaporates.   In a comparatively short time wholegrain flour becomes sour and moldy.   Therefore, under ideal conditions, when bread is to be baked, the whole grain should be ground.  The law in regard to milling and baking should provide that none but whole-grain flour be used and the whole-grain flour used in any bakery should be ground by suitable millers in that same bakery on the morning of the same day in which the baking takes place.  For home use the fresh flour could be delivered daily as milk is distributed.”     (page 125 The Good Life)

Wow.   Wouldn’t it be great if we could have fresh ground grain delivered to our door?  You CAN use fresh ground grain, of all kinds, e.g. brown rice, buckwheat, quinoa, millet, wheat, spelt, garbanzo, etc. by purchasing a grain mill, either electric or hand powered.  I have an electric one and make all of my own flours.  I do save time by making a batch of many different kinds at a time and freezing them in glass containers in the freezer.  I love to make fresh quick breads with garbanzo flour or a combination of the garbanzo flour and a grain, for that quality protein.  Spelt is my first choice for muffins, pies and quick breads as it is an ancient grain and much less likely to cause problems for people.  Some gluten sensitive people can use spelt without difficulty.

Onion Bread (Custom)This Onion Braid was made with freshly ground flour, and the recipe is in my Eat Away Illness book.  I have to confess I didn’t make it, my son did.

Please consider purchasing a grain mill to upgrade your nutrition to a new level.  And check the archives in this blog for many recipes using whole grain or legume flours.

Improve your health one step at a time!



Pumpkin Love Continued!

November 19, 2015

I have another great idea for using up your fall pumpkin.  My first book Cook Your Way to Health has a recipe called Cashew Cheese Loaf, one of the most used recipes in all of my books, particularly as a bread substitute for those wishing gluten free healthy alternatives.  It toasts well, and is absolutely scrumptious.  I decided to modify it for a sweet version using pumpkin.  It freezes well, keeps well in the fridge, and is a taste sensation that is gluten free and dairy free.  Make your own ‘cashew flour’ by grinding approximately 1/2 cup raw cashews at a time in a Magic Bullet, coffee grinder, or blender, for the freshest nutrient dense flour.

                                                   Pumpkin Cashew Loaf (Custom)                                                                            


2 cups ground raw cashews

1/2 cup coconut flour

1 tsp. baking soda

2 tsp. cinnamon

1 tsp. pumpkin pie spice (or 1/4 tsp. each nutmeg, mace, cloves)

1/2 cup coconut oil, or ghee, melted

1/2 cup maple syrup

2 cups pumpkin puree

6 large organic eggs

  1.  Preheat oven to 350 F.
  2. Line two loaf pans with moistened parchment paper.
  3. In a large bowl, combine all of the wet ingredients:  oil, syrup, pumpkin, and eggs.
  4. In a medium bowl, combine the ground cashews, coconut flour, baking soda, and spices.
  5. Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients and combine.
  6. Divide mixture between the two loaf pans.
  7. Bake for approximately 55 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean.
  8. Cool on wire rack 5 minutes.   Lift out cake with parchment paper and continue cooling on rack before removing paper.

You may grind whole raw unblanched almonds or hazelnuts in place of cashews.  Try making muffins if you wish.


                                                           Pumpkin Cashew Loaf 2 (Custom)                                                               

Download Cook Your Way to Health for $7.99 at http://www.healingwithnutrition.ca

Pumpkin Love!

November 11, 2015

I enjoyed the beauty of this growing Cinderella Pumpkin all summer.


Pumpkin in garden (Custom)Now I am enjoying eating it!  This Pumpkin Bison Stew is easy to make, very tasty, and freezes well.   It began in my book Eat Away Illness as Oven Beef or Bison Stew, but here I’ve substituted pumpkin for turnips.   It worked well.

Pumpkin bison Stew (actual size) (Custom)

Pumpkin Bison Stew

onions, quartered

coconut oil

1 pound bison, cubed

2 tbsp. whole grain flour of choice

pumpkin, cubed

carrots, coined

celery, sliced

herbs of choice, e.g. oregano, basil

Celtic sea salt to taste

3/4 cup tomato juice (may use tomato paste mixed with a bit of water)

2 cups vegetable broth, filtered water or leftover red wine

  1.  Saute onions in oil until transparent.
  2. Add bison and saute.
  3. Sprinkle with the flour and stir to combine.
  4. Add veggies and herbs and liquids.
  5. Bake at 300F. for 3 hours.

Serve with a green salad for a well balanced meal.

Enjoy the health benefits of pumpkin this winter.


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