This week is all about warming and nourishing meals to help support the body, mind and soul. January and new beginnings can feel somewhat bleak and overwhelming; self-care and eating nutritious meals helps us feel grounded.
Our featured menu ingredients are oats, apples and winter vegetables.
Their plant benefits include; soothing our nervous system, helping us stay grounded, supporting our immunity with essential vitamins, minerals and lots of fibre for our gut health and digestion.
The first full moon of 2022 is rising this weekend. I’m sending you warm wishes and nourishing dishes that I hope will be garnished with grace and a little full moon magic for you.
- APPLE & CRANBERRY BAKED OATS ~Apples and fresh cranberries atop oats mixed with freshly pressed apple cider, warming spices and sliced dates for a hint of sweetness, then baked.
This is both fabulous and festive and bakes into a delicious warming dish that is light and completely sugar-free; check the label on your apple cider and make sure there is no added sugar etc
- OAT HOT CHOCOLATE ~ Cholesterol-free and heart-healthy; a rich and nourishing hot chocolate Hug-in-a-Mug. Rolled oats blended with cacao powder give this hot chocolate a lovely full and creamy texture and mouthfeel without adding any fats keeping this food as medicine drink fat-free. I used 1 date as a sweetener to add nutrient density, minerals and fibre, which help balance blood sugar—a great afternoon pick-me-up or a quick sustaining snack in a mug.
- SAVOURY SWEET POTATO OAT PANCAKES w/ Pickled Root Vegetables ~ Grated sweet potato and herbs stirred into a simple blender oat pancake batter make this a nutrient-dense and healthy meal, a fun savoury brunch or breakfast for dinner. These pancakes are versatile and can be served with many different toppings ~ I have listed many ideas with links in the method below for you. Here the pancakes are served topped with Pickled Earthy Root Vegetables – it is worth your time making a jar of these; they are fabulous.
- ROASTED HUBBARD SQUASH SOUP ~ A perfect warming wintery veggie soup! Roasting the squash or pumpkin helps deepen the flavour; you can skip this step if you like. You can roast the seeds with the squash or add a handful of pumpkin seeds rubbed with a bit of oil & salt to the tray with the squash & remove them after 12mins or so once they are golden. Scallions add brightness and texture to the soup.
- CHOCOLATE APPLE TAHINI MUFFINS made with Oats ~ A great recipe for those not-so-fabulous apples rolling around in your fridge draw. Grate them straight into your mixing bowl as you don’t want to lose any juices, then whisk in the remaining ingredients. These muffins taste deliciously indulgent yet are full of basic wholesome ingredients; high in fibre, gluten + dairy + nut-free, sweetened with apples and maple syrup.
Feel good about eating chocolate ~ Cacao is one of the richest plant-based sources of iron & antioxidants. Cacao has anti-inflammatory, brain, nervous systems and heart-healthy nutrients making cacao a delicious food as a medicinal.
- ROASTED CHICKEN & WHITE BEAN CASSOULET ~ A warming one-pan wonder recipe where the oven does the work for you! Prep your veg, top with chicken and broth, then roast to perfection! This recipe is straightforward, great as a pre-prep dinner or for the most elusive of kitchen cooks.
I wrote this recipe with some musical souls in mind; the ones who can play a note, write a rock symphony or hold a tune way better than they can wield a knife; who do not love to cook or think about food but need to eat nourishing and warming meals and keep making the music that feeds all our hearts and souls.
Wishing you a warm and nourishing week and a happy first full moon of 2022.
Chef Karina Hines