Blueberries and Cream “Kefir”

P1030240I’m actually smiling as I write this. Well no. I was smiling a few minutes ago. Now I’m just feeling like a trussed turkey in this heat. But the reason I was smiling is because I was sipping on this fantastic blended fruit tonic called Blueberries and Cream “Kefir”. It looks like a heavy smoothie but it has the lightest of textures and belly-feel. I can’t really handle milkshakes and smoothies. I’m too, uh, delicate 😉 So thus use of a non-dairy nut mylk is perfect for my kapha dosha constitution. Also, berries are constituted as an astringent, dry fruit which is also perfect for kapha types.

I found this gorgeous recipe from Meredith Baird, partner to Matthew Kenney, King of all raw foodists. In her description, Baird says about blueberries that they improve memory and stabilize the nervous system. They are also low in calories and sugar. The addition of probiotics gives it an extra digestive boost. She closes by saying that this is  a great smoothie to give to kids before school.

Before we go further, the question is, “What is kefir?” Very simply, kefir is a fermented drink made up of yeasts and bacteria, packed with nutrients and vitamins and good for your belly garden. The reason why kefir is in inverted commas ”   “, is because this smoothie simply has the probiotic powder and not the actual kefir.

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This is the dairy-free probiotic powder I use which can easily be bought at any organic store.

 

Here’s the recipe:

2 cups fresh or frozen blueberries

1 banana

1 probiotic satchet

2 cups of your favorite nut mylk

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Soak 1 cup of almonds overnight then blend with 2 cups of water on high speed. Place a nut mylk bag in a measuring jug then pour the mylk out. Squeeze the excess liquid out through the bag. This is your nut mylk. Use the pulp to make cookies or dry to use as flour.

Blend the berries, probiotic, banana and mylk until smooth.

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Earl Grey Raw Chocolate Terrine

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I love Earl Gray tea and I love chocolate. This terrine has been on my mind since I first spotted it on the Rawmazing site which I regularly follow. I never looked at the actual recipe before and just assumed it would be a pain in the ass to put together but it was SO easy, I could have smacked myself for not doing it sooner.

I am also now able to tell you what to avoid and what to consider and then hope that you will make this with your own interpretation.

Susan’s recipe calls for the following:

  • 3 tablespoons Earl Grey Tea
  • 1 1/2 cups very hot water
  • 1 1/2 cups cashews, soaked and drained
  • 1/3 cup agave nectar
  • 1/3 cup cacao powder
  • 6 ounces raw cacao butter, melted*

Method (this is all from the Rawmazing site, word for word)

1. Add tea to hot water. Let steep for 5 minutes, drain and cool.
2.  Place tea and cashews in high-speed blender and blend until smooth.
3. Add agave and cacao powder, blend until well combined.
4. Slowly pour in melted cacao butter. Blend until well combined.
5. Pour into any rectangular container that will un-mold easily. I used a silicone mold that is 8 x 3 x 2 deep.
6. Freeze until solid. Dip mold briefly in hot water, un-mold. Slice into 1/2″ pieces to serve. You can let this warm, it will hold it’s form.

My Suggestions:

1. I used soaked, then frozen cashews. It really increased the water content, rendering a very  “iced” terrine as opposed to a smooth, creamy one. Don’t use frozen ones.

2. I ran out of every kind of sweetener in my house, except for coconut sugar which worked really well, but I did not use enough. The tannins from the tea have a beautiful bitterness to them, and I also like my chocolate quite bitter but the two together is overwhelming. Even if 1/3 cup of agave sounds like a lot, follow the recipe. It’s all about the balance.

3. The cacao butter doesn’t leave a creamy, comfortable mouth-feel. It feels kind of greasy and flat. Instead, try doing this recipe with coconut oil instead. It will be softer and creamier. Thank you, Adela Stoulilova for the suggestion.

4. Try adding different ingredients like avocado, lavendar, citrus, lemon…

6. Use a good quality Earl Grey.

5. I highly recommend a silicone mould as the hot water dipping thing didn’t really work well for me. Silicone moulds will give you a cleaner finish as well.

To make the chocolate drizzle, mix, cocoa powder with coconut oil and a bit of liquid sweetener. Alternately, make a coulis with apricots, or raspberries to contrast the flavour of the tea and chocolate.

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