Italian Herbed Cashews

Cashews are my one of my favorite nuts. I get tired of almonds and pistachios, but cashews….yum! 

Creamy.
Crunchy.
I love these guys.

Plain, in nut milk, cashew yogurt, or salad or smoothie toppers. They are so good.

Roasting your cashews and creating different flavor combos is really simple and easy to do. One of my favorite combos is coconut oil, Italian herbs, and sea salt flakes. 

I love eating them while they’re still slightly warm, just a little above room temperature. And, they are as good cooled. 

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Italian Herbed Cashews

(Gluten-Free, Paleo, Whole30)

Recipe makes 8 servings.

What You'll Need To Know

Preheat oven to 350F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper or use a non-stick baking sheet.

In a bowl or reusable bag, mix together cashews and coconut oil until cashews are well coated. Season with spices and sea salt.

Transfer seasoned nuts to baking sheet and roast for 12 minutes, moving nuts around and roast for 3-5 more minutes. Nuts should be a golden brown.

Once done, let nuts cool before enjoying!

What You'll Need

2 cups raw cashews
1/2 tbsp melted coconut oil
1 1/2 teaspoons dried oregano
1 teaspoon dried marjoram
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1/2 teaspoon dried basil
1/2 teaspoon dried rosemary
1/2 teaspoon dried sage
Sea salt flakes (I used this brand)

 

Valerie Fidan

Valerie is a San Francisco native who gave up the comforts of home to travel the world continuously. Now based in Portland, OR, Valerie is a Social Media Marketing Consultant, helping solo entrepreneurs and small business owners DIY their social media by teaching them the in’s and out’s of SMM. She enjoys health hacking recipes, a good cocktail, yoga, hikes, live shows, puns & dad jokes.

Cashew Butter Protein Bites

Woah! These Cashew Butter Protein Bites are SO good! They pack a lot of fiber, protein, and healthy fats into these delicious no-bake Cashew Butter Protein Bites. Take along a few of these protein balls when you need a quick snack, and you’ll be surprised by how well these snacks stop hunger and boost energy levels. Plus, the healthy fats also make these no-bake protein bites filling. 

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What You'll Need

1-16 oz jar cashew butter
2 scoops MRM veggie elite protein (vanilla)
3/4 cups gluten free oat bran
3/4 cups almond meal
1/4 coconut shavings
1/8 cup chia seeds
2 tbsp honey
1 tsp maca
2 tbsp cacao nibs

What You’ll Need To Know

Combine everything in a bowl and mix together folding in the mixture until everything is mixed really well. 

Form mixture into 1" bite-size balls and roll in extra coconut shavings.

Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

I will note, these do get a little messy, so dust your hands with coconut flour or starch while forming the bites. 

Recipe makes 17-18

Want to try MRM? Use promo-code 'valerie' for 40% off your order on MRM products.

Raw Cashew Protein Bars

https://kurejuicebar.com/

I love a good protein bar, but here is my issue: High-protein bars can come with huge price tags, at times as high as $4 per bar. And, unbelievable is the ingredient list on many of the bars: hydrolyzed gelatin, glycerin, soy protein isolate, high fructose corn syrup, fractionated palm kernel oil, and artificial sweeteners, flavors, colors, and preservatives. Gross! Your body is a temple, and you shouldn't add that crap to your body

These Raw Cashew Protein Bars are a take on Kure Juice's Kure Bars that you can make for yourself right at home. They are loaded with so many good-for-you ingredients and taste absolutely amazing!


What You'll Need

1 cup flax meal
1 cup oats  
1/2 cup chia seeds
1/2 cup hemp seeds
1/2 cup cashew butter, unsweetened (I used Whole Foods 365 brand)
1/4 cup coconut shavings, unsweetened
4 scoops Vital Proteins collagen peptides  
1/8 cup cacao nibs
1/4 cup grade a maple syrup* 
1 tbsp organic ground cinnamon
1/8 tsp sea salt
2 tbsp maca (I used this brand)
3/4 cup almond milk, unsweetened 

*You can also use 6 soaked and pitted Medjool dates in place of the maple syrup

What You'll Need To Know

Add all dry ingredients to a food processor and process for 2 minutes. 

Add in wet ingredients (maple syrup, almond milk, cashew butter) and process for 2 more minutes.

Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and flatten out the mix. I used a cake pan  
2'' H x 13'' W x 9'' D 

Refrigerate for 1-1.5 hours and let it set before cutting into squares.

Store in an air tight container and refrigerate. These hold up for about a week in the refrigerator and about a month in the freezer (thaw out for a few minutes before eating!) 

Makes 24 servings!  

 

Chia Seed Taco's with Cashew Yogurt, Strawberry-Chia Jam + gr8nola

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Happy Valentine’s Day! 💕 To show you some love, I've teamed up with gr8nola and Salba Chia to share this incredibly delicious Chia Seed Taco recipe. Yasss!! A chia seed taco with cashew yogurt, strawberry-chia jam, cacao nibs and strawberries!! ONE lucky winner will also win some delicious + clean Gr8nola AND Salba Chia seeds. Amazing, right? Here’s how to enter: 1. LIKE this photo on Instagram. 2. FOLLOW @gr8nola, @salbachia & @valeriefidan 3. TAG 3 friends you LOVE in the comments.

Giveaway closes Friday 2/17 at 11:59 pm PT and winner will be sent a DM via gr8nola. US residents only. Good luck!

Chia Seed Taco's with Cashew Yogurt, Strawberry-Chia Jam + gr8nola
Chia Seed Taco's with Cashew Yogurt, Strawberry-Chia Jam + gr8nola
Chia Seed Taco's with Cashew Yogurt, Strawberry-Chia Jam + gr8nola
Chia Seed Taco's with Cashew Yogurt, Strawberry-Chia Jam + gr8nola

What You'll Need

Chia Taco:
1 cup of coconut milk, unsweetened
1 1/2 cup tapioca flour
3 tablespoon coconut flour
2 tablespoon coconut oil, melted
3 tablespoon Organic Black Chia Seeds
9 tablespoon of lukewarm water
1/4 tsp vanilla bean
1 tsp stevia
Pinch of sea salt

Strawberry Chia Jam:
1 lb strawberries
1 tsp stevia
3 tablespoons chia seeds
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
a pinch of sea salt
2 tbsp water

Toppings:
Unsweetened Cashew yogurt (I used Forager's Project)

What You'll Need To Know

Strawberry Chia Jam:
1. Add strawberries, vanilla, sea salt, water, and stevia in a food processor and pulse 4 times.

2. Transfer mixture to a sauce pan and heat over a medium heat. Bring mix to a low boil, stirring frequently. Reduce heat to low and simmer for about 5-7 minutes.
Stir in chia seeds. Cook the jam on low until it thickens, about 5-7 minutes. Make sure you stir the jam so it doesn't stick.

3. Remove the jam from heat and let it cool to room temperature.

4. Pour in a glass jar or air-tight container and store in the refrigerator. The jam will keep in the fridge for up to 2 weeks.

Tortilla:
1. In a small mixing bowl, add chia seeds and warm water and mix for about 30-60 seconds, until the chia seeds become jelly.

2. In a large mixing bowl add coconut, tapioca flour, vanilla bean, stevia, coconut milk, sea salt and coconut oil, and combine in the chia seeds mix. Mix until a dough forms. The batter should be somewhat like pancake batter consistency.

3. Over a medium to low heat, heat up a non-stick pan and lightly grease with coconut oil and pour in 1/4 cup of the batter in the middle of the pan and use a spatula to form an even circle and cook for about 2 minutes on each side. Remove from heat and serve on a plate.

4. Top with yogurt, strawberry chia jam, cacao nibs, gr8nola and fresh strawberries.


Recipe makes about 8 tortillas.

#NoBake Gr8nola Peanut Butter Energy bites

No Bake Gr8nola  Peanut Butter Energy bites
No Bake Gr8nola Peanut Butter Energy bites

Beating that midday snack attack hour with these No Bake gr8nola Pumpkin Peanut Butter Energy bites! This recipe was inspired by MaxenesTrailofCrumbs.com No Bake Peanut Butter Energy Balls. The only swaps made were granola for quick oats, honey for stevia and 1 tablespoon melted coconut manna and 2 tablespoons pumpkin puree. Maxene had recommended to keep the wet ratio the same!

What You'll Need

1 cup gr8nola
2/3 cups unsweetened coconut flakes
1/2 cups unsweetened Peanut Butter
1/4 cup dark chocolate chips
4-5 drops stevia
1 tablespoon chia seeds
2 tablespoon coconut oil, melted
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves

What You'll Need To Know

1. Mix the dry ingredients in a medium bowl. Next, mix in the peanut butter, stevia, coconut oil, pumpkin puree, cinnamon, and vanilla extract until the mixture looks evenly distributed.

2. Let the mixture set in the refrigerator for 30 minutes. When ready, roll into 1" size balls and sprinkle more granola.

3. Keep refrigerated and store in an airtight container for up to a week.

Recipe makes 12

Pumpkin Pie Fat Bombs

Get ready to fall in love because of this decadent, and delicious Pumpkin Pie Fat Bombs tastes JUST like a piece of homemade pumpkin pie. Trust me here! They require no baking and are super easy to make. I can't bake to save my life, so anything that requires blending, rolling and letting it sit for a bit, I'm down to try. These Pumpkin Pie Bites are bursting into the signature seasonal spices of nutmeg, clove, ginger, and cinnamon in a no-bake, gluten-free and keto-friendly snack or dessert. Can you believe they've got only 2 net carbs per serving?

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What You'll Need

1/2 cup pumpkin puree
4 tbsps ghee*
2 tbsps coconut oil
3-4 drops stevia
1 tsp ginger
1 tbsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp cloves, ground
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/4 cup pecans
A pinch of sea salt
1/2 cup coconut shavings

What You'll Need To Know

1. Melt coconut oil in the microwave until liquified. Add the ghee and whip well with a fork until blended.

2. Keep whipping and stir in the pumpkin until smooth add creamy. Add stevia, spices, sea salt and stir. Add mixture into a high-speed blender, adding the pecans and blend for 1-2 minutes.

3. Transfer mixture back to bowl and place the bowl in the refrigerator for 15-20 minutes for mixture to firm up.

4. Remove from fridge and roll into a 1" ball, and sprinkle coconut flakes. Place balls back in the refrigerator for at least one hour.

* You can substitute ghee for coconut manna or grass-fed butter

Recipe makes 12.

#NoBake gr8nola Bars (Gluten-Free + Vegan)

No-Bake gr8nola Bars (Gluten-Free + Vegan)
No-Bake gr8nola Bars (Gluten-Free + Vegan)
No-Bake gr8nola Bars (Gluten-Free + Vegan)
No-Bake gr8nola Bars (Gluten-Free + Vegan)

Good morning!! Have you been enjoying this Instagram takeover? I sure have! I’m so excited to share these No-Bake gr8nola Bars with you! Not only are they gluten-free but also vegan! These crispy, chewy homemade granola bars are so easy to make, healthier than store-bought, and perfect for a quick breakfast or snack on-the-go. All you need is a handful of pantry staples, but feel free to get creative with mix-ins like nuts, dried fruits, and seeds.


What You'll Need

2 cups gr8nola granola
1/2 cup all natural peanut butter, unsweetened
1/4 cup coconut manna, melted
5-6 stevia drops
1/4 cup pumpkin seeds
1/8 cup flax seeds
1/8 cup chia seeds
1/8 cup hemp hearts
2 tablespoons toasted buckwheat
1 tablespoon diced dried apple
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon vanilla

What You'll Need To Know

1. In a large bowl, stir dry ingredients together and set aside.

2. Add coconut manna in a ziplock bag and melt by placing bag in warm-hot water. Pour over dry ingredients and add peanut butter. Mix ingredients well, then pour mixture onto parchment paper lined baking sheet (about 12 x 8 inches).

3. Press mixture to 3/4-inch thickness. (If your pan isn't small enough, pack mixture into one side.

4. You really want to press them down so they stick together. A greased rubber spatula helps with this!)

5. Sprinkle with pumpkin seeds and hemp hearts and press down lightly. Refrigerate pan at least 1 hour, or until set, before cutting into bars.

5. Wrap bars in parchment or plastic wrap and store at room temperature, or in your refrigerator, for up to 1 week.

Want to give it a try? Use the promo code 'VFGR8' and get $8 off your order of $16 or more!! #eatgr8nola ❤️ 

Raw Matcha Protein Balls

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Rolled up some brain boosting, muscle fueling, energizing matcha protein bombs using Motion Matcha last week and they were down-right delicious.

Feel free to play around with the ingredients; you may like more or less of some things. You can always add to the recipe, like mixing in different kinds of nuts and seeds to give them some crunch. Have fun and experiment with the flavors to suit your tastes.

Raw Matcha Protein Bombs Motion Matcha
Raw Matcha Protein Bombs Motion Matcha

What You'll Need

1 tbs matcha (add more if you like it strong!)
1 cup (100g) pumpkin seeds
2 1/4 cups (200g) raw cashews
40g vanilla protein
1/2 cup unsweetened coconut shavings (extra for rolling)
1/2 cup rolled oats
1 tsp vanilla powder
3 tbs tahini
6 soaked pitted dates (reserve date water)

What You'll Need To Know

1. In a food processor, add pumpkin seeds, 1/2 the cashews and oats until mixture looks crumbly.

2. Add matcha and vanilla protein and process again to combine.

3. Add in vanilla paste, tahini and dates to the mixture while processing.

4. Add reserved date water to help combine mixture.

5. Process the mixture until it combines and starts to stick together, add water to help bind if the mixture looks dry.

6. Add coconut shavings and the remainder cashews, process just enough to combine but to retain the crunch and texture.

7. Roll into 16 decent sized balls then garnish with extra desiccated coconut.
Store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 2 weeks.

There's more where this came from! Did you like this recipe? Comment on Instagram (@valeriefidan)!

Fresh Salmon Spring Rolls

Fresh Salmon Spring Rolls
Fresh Salmon Spring Rolls

I love a good lunch! And, this recipe is all that and then some. These Fresh Salmon Spring Rolls are all of my favorite things all wrapped up into little tasty morsels: greens, carrots, purple cabbage, cucumber, avocado and sushi grade salmon with a miso dipping sauce. I love sashimi, fresh veggies... what's not to love?

It might seem slightly intimidating to make these or even use raw salmon. But, trust me... Buying sushi grade fish is simple. I purchased mine at my local Whole Foods, but you'll be able to do this at any market that sells fresh fish. There are a few things to consider. Although something may be labeled sushi grade, here are a couple of things to know and questions to ask before purchasing:

  • Go to the right place. Go to a reputable fishmonger or market.
  • Choose sustainable.
  • Ask the right questions, like: Which days fish is delivered? Is it fresh or frozen?
  • And get them to pick you out some nice sushi grade fish.
  • Use your senses. Never use fish with a fishy odor.
  • Let your fishmonger know you need 'sushi grade fish.'

Now, let's talk about the Rice Paper Wrappers. These can also be intimidating to tackle if you've never used them before. They come out of the package hard and inedible, and they must be soaked in water before using. Simply, follow the instructions on the package and you'll be good to go.

Not sure how to cut sushi grade salmon? Here's a great video: How To Cut Sushi Grade Salmon.

Fresh Salmon Spring Rolls
Fresh Salmon Spring Rolls
Fresh Salmon Spring Rolls

What You'll Need

4 rice paper wrappers
4 butter or romaine lettuce leaves
1 carrot, shredded
1 cucumber, shredded
1 cup cabbage, shredded
Haas avocado, sliced
4-5 oz sushi grade salmon, thinly sliced (1/4")
 

What You'll Need To Know

Soak rice paper wrappers.

Arrange one piece of lettuce on bottom half of soaked rice paper, folding or tearing to fit and leaving a 1-inch border along the edge.

Top with some of the carrots, cabbage, cucumber, avocado, and salmon. Don't overfill. Make sure the ingredients are not clumped together in the center, but evenly distributed from one end to the other.

Pressing down on the filling with your fingers (pressing down on the ingredients is particularly important because it tightens the roll), fold the bottom end of the sheet (side nearest you) over the top of the fillings and roll into a cylindrical shape halfway.

Fold the left and right sides inward and complete rolling the remaining half. If rice paper is too dry to seal, moisten unsealed edges with a little more hot water.

Transfer summer roll to a plate, seam-side down, slice and cover with dampened paper towels.

Make additional roll in the same manner.

Oven Baked Sweet Potato Fries

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Let's talk carbs, because not all carbs are bad for you. Complex carbs are the best type of carbs. These are the ones you should be eating on a daily basis like sweet potatoes, brown rice, wholemeal bread and pasta, oatmeal and bran. These carbs will be digested slower than simple carbs and keep you feeling fuller for longer. Obviously, this is all in moderation.

And, speaking of sweet potatoes, they are a staple in this house, especially sweet potato fries. It is safe to say they’re one of my husband's very favorite things, and I love them too!

I could eat them every day... which is why I make this healthier, baked, version. There is no frying involved, so they automatically are healthier already. I've even roasted them without using any oil at all, and they still came out good!

It’s shocking I haven’t posted a recipe for these sooner! Now that it’s coming into the weekend (and it’s Spring!), it’s a perfect time to make these.

Whip up some guacamole to dip them in or the organic ketchup you have on hand; I’m a fan of them all on their own too. These are best made when it’s time you want to eat them, as they do not keep the same way, just like fries!

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What You'll Need

2 medium sweet potatoes, washed and dried
2 tablespoons grapeseed or coconut oil
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp onion powder
1 1/2 tsp sea salt
2 tsp smoked paprika
optional: dash of cayenne

What You'll Need To Know

Preheat the oven to 450 F

Cut the sweet potatoes into (a quarter inch or so) strips lengthwise (picture above).

Mix all ingredients but the sweet potatoes in a large bowl, then add the potatoes in until they're evenly coated.

Transfer onto a large (greased) baking sheet, spreading them out so they don't overlap each other.

Cook for 25-30 minutes, checking and flipping them over in between.

Remove when edges begin to brown or to your crispness liking.

Add more salt if desired and enjoy!

Avocado Tartine + Quinoa-Flax Bread (Gluten Free)

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Let's talk about tartines. It used to be all about Avocado Toast, but those green tartines are everywhere these days. With fresh toppings like fresh mozzarella, ricotta, basil and pistachio oil, these open-faced sandwiches are insta-worthy.

Making them at home is simple. The trick is to pair contrasting flavors, then layer your slice of toast. Have one for a quick, elevated snack or a few for a beautiful lunch. Now, that's how you elevate the lunch-game!

Lunch can be a tricky thing. So many of us find it difficult to make time to eat it in the first place, let alone make sure it is healthy and nutritious. The other day I made this amazing quinoa-flaxseed bread, topped it with avocado, fresh mozzarella, pistachio oil, and smoked paprika. Not only was it delicious but picture perfect! Plus, quinoa has so many amazing nutritious health benefits!

Quinoa-flax Bread (Gluten-Free)

Wet Ingredients:

1 cup quinoa

2 cups water (for soaking the quinoa)

3/4 cups coconut milk

2 eggs

1 Tbsp. raw honey

Dry Ingredients:

1 cups buckwheat flour

2 Tbsp. tapioca starch

1/2 tsp. baking soda

1 1/4 tsp. baking powder (use a gluten-free variety)

2 Tbsp. ground flax seeds

1/2 tsp. sea salt

Soak quinoa in the 2 cups of water overnight, to start the sprouting process. In the morning, drain excess water and rinse. Preheat oven to 350F, and spray a loaf pan with cooking spray. In a large bowl, combine Wet Ingredients. In a separate bowl, combine the Dry Ingredients. Mix the wet and dry ingredients together, and pour into the loaf pan. Bake at 350F for 40 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean. Let cool in the loaf pan for 5-10 minutes, then transfer to a cooling rack and enjoy! This loaf is best stored in the fridge, or sliced and frozen.

Tartine

1/4 haas avocado

1/2 fresh mozzarella ball

1/4 tablespoon pistachio oil

Smoked Paprika

Sea salt, to taste

Slice your Quinoa-Flax bread, layer with avocado, mozzarella, drizzled with pistachio oil and sprinkle with smoked paprika and salt.

Matcha Hemp Energy Balls

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Have you heard, Matcha is the new "it" superfood this year. It's been recently making waves in the health and beauty worlds because the green tea leaves are believed to be high in antioxidants.

Even though regular steeped green tea is considered healthy because the leaves contain antioxidants, water can only extract a small about of the leaves' nutritional properties. With matcha, one consumes the entire leaf, in a powdered form, making it exponentially more healthful. With such an antioxidant punch, it's no wonder that matcha just is the new superfood.

There are so many different ways to incorporate matcha in your diet, aside from drinking it. You're going to love this Matcha Hemp Energy Ball recipe. It's a perfect energy boosting snack or a pre-workout boost.

Here’s why keeping these energy balls readily available in your fridge will keep you feeling filled and fueled up for your day.

  • Matcha is super high in antioxidants
  • Hemp seeds have a ton of potassium, contains the essential fatty acids we need to get from food, and are a complete protein as they have every essential amino acid. It’s also high in fiber and omega-3 and 6. OK so basically hemp is amazing.
  • Nut and seed butters have the heathy kind of fats we need to fill us up, not out!
  • Oats have the B vitamins we need for energy, fiber to keep us feeling full and keep things “moving along” properly, and helps stabilize blood sugar levels. No thanks to those nasty sugar spike and slumps!
  • Dates provide a good dose of magnesium, potassium, and fiber. They’re also great for pregnant women; some studies show if consumed regularly in the last 4 weeks it can potentially decrease chances of an induction and augmentation of labor.
  • Honey is just good. It never goes bad.  The raw honey I used was from South Africa (you do not need to use African honey!). Yes, I am that person that manages to find a farmers market while vacationing in South Africa and brings home their local honey.
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What You'll Need

2 TB matcha powder
1/4 cup chopped dates, packed (about 7 dates)
1 cup nut or seed butter**
1/3 cup oats
2-3 TB raw honey or brown rice syrup**
1 tsp cinnamon
3 TB hemp hearts/seeds

What You'll Need To Know

Combine all ingredients except the hemp hearts in a food processor. Pulse until all ingredients have formed together nicely, it will look chunky but well combined.

Form into small balls and roll delicately in hemp hearts.

Store in the fridge or freezer to enjoy anytime!

Notes

** For vegan use brown rice syrup. Depending on how sweet you want it, adjust tablespoons accordingly. I used 2.

** I combined both almond & peanut butters.

Recipe makes 12 balls. 

The Matcha Hemp Ball recipe was originally published in AskLeahRenee.com

Fresh Mango Salsa

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Shrimp Tacos with Mango Salsa, tacos,mexican recipe, healthy mexican recipe, gluten-free, gluten-free recipe, healthy recipe, recipes, seafood, shrimp recipe, shrimp, mango salsa

This simple and colorful mango salsa is super easy to make. It's got a great combination of sweet, spicy and utterly delicious. Serve this fresh mango salsa with chips, on fish or shrimp tacos or salads, or on top of a pan-seared fish. It's that good!

What You'll Need

1 mango, diced
1/4 purple onion, diced
1/2 cup cilantro, chopped
1/2 cup tomatoes, chopped
1 Jalapeño, finely chopped and deveined
Juice from 2 limes
Pink Himalayan Salt, to taste
 

What You'll Need To Know

In a serving bowl, combine the ingredients.

Drizzle with the juice of the limes and mix well.

Season to taste with salt.

For best flavor, let the salsa rest for 10 minutes or longer.

Recipe makes 3 cups.

Did you make this recipe? Post it on Instagram and tag @valeriefidan on it!

Cashew Hummus

Cashew Hummus 3

I love hummus.

it's so creamy.

So smoooooooth.

It's a delicious, healthy snack thank can be used as a dip for fresh crisp veggies such as carrot sticks, cucumber sticks, zucchini sticks, yellow squash sticks, red pepper strips and broccolini. You can also use hummus as a condiment for wraps like this or this, mushroom stuffing, and sandwiches. But, what happens when you're craving hummus and realize you don't have all the ingredients that you need? That's what happened this weekend. I got creative with what I had.

This recipe takes traditional hummus and replaces the tahini with raw cashews. It's delicious and creamy.

A healthy note... Cashews are loaded with magnesium, zinc, iron, and vitamins B1 and K. This raw version of a classic favorite brings you the flavors you love with nutrients and enzymes intact.

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Cashew Hummus 1

What You'll Need

.5 cup soaked raw cashews*
1 cup garbanzo beans (chickpeas)
Juice from 1 fresh lemon, or to taste
1/4 cup water
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1/4 teaspoon paprika
Pinch of sea salt, to taste

What You'll Need To Know

Combine the soaked cashews, garbanzo beans, lemon juice, extra virgin olive oil, onion, powder, and sea salt in a Vita-Mix or food processor and blend until the ingredients are smooth and creamy. Serve in a glass or ceramic dish and sprinkle paprika over it.

Side Notes

If it needs more silky body, add a little more extra virgin olive oil. If you like a stronger garlic taste, add more garlic. Adjust the seasonings to your liking.

If your lemon does not yield enough juice, you may need more liquid; use two lemons if you need to. Taste test!

Store in the fridge in a covered glass bowl or storage container. The flavors get better as it chills. Chilling the hummus also thickens it.


*How to Soak Cashews for Cashew Cream

What You'll Need

1 cup organic raw cashews

Fresh filtered water

What You'll Need To Know

You'll want to rinse the raw cashews in a colander and place them in a glass or ceramic bowl. Cover them with fresh filtered water. Cover the bowl with a clean cheese cloth or tea towel and let them soak for two hours. Drain the water and use in recipes.

How To Make Fish Ceviche

I LOVE ceviche! It's one of my favourite ways to eat fish. The refreshing dish of fish marinated in citrus juice reminds me a lot of summer time. It's light and bright. Plus, it requires no heat to cook, so you don't have to worry about turning on your oven or stove. Ceviche is surprisingly easy to prepare. When making it at home, there are just a few key things to keep in mind. The most important is to use the freshest fish possible and beyond that it's all about the marinating process, which works sort of like pickling. Being here in Costa Rica, we've had an abundance of seafood. Today we bought Mahi Mahi, so I thought I'd make ceviche.

A Few Key Things...

Most fish works for ceviche, but the best kinds are semi-firm white-fleshed ocean fish like sea bass, striped bass, grouper, sole or flounder. Stay away from oily fish like mackerel, sardines, tuna, bluefish or jack. Freshwater fish like trout or catfish don't really work either.

When making ceviche, it's important that the different components are evenly sized so they marinate evenly. This also helps with presentation and ease of eating. The fish should preferably be chopped into large, even chunks or sliced into thin pieces. The vegetables, such as peppers or onions, are best diced. But you can, for presentation sake, slice the onions very thinly.

It's best to keep the fish separate from the vegetables until you're ready to serve. This prevents the vegetables or the fish from turning mushy and keeps the different colors (especially if you're using red onions) from bleeding together.

ceviche

What You'll Need

2lb of white fish fillets, cut into small square pieces 2 onions diced very finely (you can use red or white onions) 4 tomatoes diced very finely 2 bell peppers, chopped very finely 20 limes, separated into about 10 limes to cook the fish and 10 limes for the ceviche marinade 1 bunch of cilantro (also known as coriander) chopped as finely as possible Salt

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What You'll Need To Know

Place the raw fish pieces in a glass dish and cover it with salt and lime juice from about 10-12 limes, the fish should be completely covered by lime juice. Cover the dish with plastic wrap and place it in the refrigerator, let the fish marinate or cook itself in the lime juice for at least 4 hours. Mix the onions, tomatoes, peppers, and cilantro with the juice from the remaining limes and let marinate for about an hour. Once the fish is “cooked” in the lime juices rinse it well and mix it with the vegetable marinade, add salt, to taste. Serve with plantain or tortilla chips or simple eat with a salad.

ceviche

Zesty Ceviche
Recipe Type: Side, Main, Salad
Cuisine: Latin American, fish, seafood, healthy, raw
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 4
Ingredients
  • 2lb of white fish fillets, cut into small square pieces
  • 2 onions diced very finely (you can use red or white onions)
  • 4 tomatoes diced very finely
  • 2 bell peppers, chopped very finely
  • 20 limes, separated into about 10 limes to cook the fish and 10 limes for the ceviche marinade
  • 1 bunch of cilantro (also known as coriander) chopped as finely as possible
  • Salt
Instructions
  1. Place the raw fish pieces in a glass dish and cover it with salt and lime juice from about 10-12 limes, the fish should be completely covered by lime juice. Cover the dish with plastic wrap and place it in the refrigerator, let the fish marinate or cook itself in the lime juice for at least 4 hours. Mix the onions, tomatoes, peppers, and cilantro with the juice from the remaining limes and let marinate for about an hour. Once the fish is “cooked” in the lime juices rinse it well and mix it with the vegetable marinade, add salt, to taste. Serve with plantain or tortilla chips or simple eat with a salad.

 

Guacamole with Roasted Serrano Chile

I love guacamole. Ever since I was young, my father would always make a creamy yet spicy guacamole. He always makes it for BBQ's at home, or if Gregg and I are stopping by for dinner. It wasn't until just this month that I decided to take a stab at it. Guacamole is all about freshness. While you want the avocado to be the star, the other ingredients need to be heard as well; and nothing is louder than the crunch of fresh Serrano chiles, the tang of lime juice and the bite of fresh garlic.

This recipe is perfect for a group of 6 people. So, if you need to make some of a party, just make sure to double or triple the recipe. GUACAMOLE WITH ROASTED SERRANO CHILE 3

What You'll Need

8 Hass Avocados 4 - 5 Serrano chile 1/2 cup of cilantro, chopped 3 garlic cloves Juice of 2 lemon, or 3 limes salt to taste

First, you'll want to roast on the stove top the Serrano peppers. I used a comal (used to head tortillas) to roast the peppers. Using a pastel and mortar or molcajete to mash up the Serrano peppers and garlic.

Next,cut the avocados in half, removing the pits and transferring them to a bowl or molcajete (mortar). If you are using a bowl, you'll need a fork to mash up the avocados.

Guacamole with Roasted Serrano Chile 4

What To Love

Avocados may be fatty, but that doesn't mean that they are bad for your health. In fact, this fruit is a nutritional powerhouse providing numerous potential health benefits.

Its creamy texture and rich taste make it a common ingredient in many dishes. It is probably most well known for being a key ingredient in the Mexican dip "guacamole".

Because of its high fat content, avocado is also used as a meat substitute in sandwiches and salads.

[amd-zlrecipe-recipe:16]

Savory Mushroom Stuffed Belgian Endives

recipes, healthy recipes, mushroom recipe, endive recipe, savory mushroom stuffed endives, vegan, gluten-free, vegetarianIt has been beginning to feel a lot like spring time here in San Francisco, and it is only February. The sun has been shining, and the weather has been unbelievably warm. Since it is been feeling much like spring on my side, I’ve been on a flower and bright vegetable (and fruit) craze. The other day I strolled around San Francisco’s Ferry Building Farmers Market for inspiration, and was in awe of the bright colors of the tented produce tables, lined with all the colors of the season. Inspired? Yes. Strolling through the farmers market is the easiest way to get inspired.

recipes, healthy recipes, mushroom recipe, endive recipe, savory mushroom stuffed endives, vegan, gluten-free, vegetarian My stroll inspired me (and my tastebuds) to make Mushroom Stuffed Belgian Endives. These bite size boats have a lot going for them: the sautéed mushrooms with zucchini, shallots, garlic, and a splash of white wine compliment the sweet, nutty flavor with a mild bitterness of the endives. endives

What You'll Need:

8 oz. Crimini Mushrooms (caps, sliced; stems, minced) 1/4 cup Sugar Plum Tomatoes 1 Medium Zucchini, diced 3 Shallots, diced 10 Garlic Cloves, minced 1/4 Cup White Wine 2 Whole Endives 1/2 teaspoon salt 1/4 teaspoon pepper 1 Tablespoon Safflower Oil (or Sunflower Oil) Garnish: flat leaf parsley

The result of sautéing all of the ingredients is a savory mouthwatering, hearty, and luxurious stuffing, with a sweet garlic tone.

stuffed endives The secret to mushrooms that are beautifully browned and not watery is taking a hands-off approach. Stirring them as they caramelize releases the mushrooms’ liquid and causes them to steam, so leaving them alone is the way to go. recipes, healthy recipes, mushroom recipe, endive recipe, savory mushroom stuffed endives, vegan, gluten-free, vegetarian Garnish with flat leaf parsley for a refreshing aftertaste.

recipes, healthy recipes, mushroom recipe, endive recipe, savory mushroom stuffed endives, vegan, gluten-free, vegetarian The natural crunch of the endives is like a bite of winter bidding farewell to the meaty and hearty crimini, and welcoming the spring time with bright zucchini, shallot and sugar plum tomato mix.

recipes, healthy recipes, mushroom recipe, endive recipe, savory mushroom stuffed endives, vegan, gluten-free, vegetarian These beautiful little gourmet goodies can be enjoyed without any guilt. What I like a lot about this savory dish, is that it is unique appetizer recipe. They take very little effort to prepare, so you can whip up an impressive batch in a pinch.

recipes, healthy recipes, mushroom recipe, endive recipe, savory mushroom stuffed endives, vegan, gluten-free, vegetarian This is also a perfect Meatless Monday dish!

Mushroom Stuffed Belgian Endives
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 4
Ingredients
  • 8 oz. Crimini Mushrooms (caps, sliced; stems, minced)
  • 1/4 cup Sugar Plum Tomatoes
  • 1 Medium Zucchini, diced
  • 3 Shallots, diced
  • 10 Garlic Cloves, minced
  • 1/4 Cup White Wine
  • 2 Whole Endives
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 Tablespoon Sallower Oil
  • Garnish: flat leaf parsley
Instructions
  1. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Sautée the shallots until translucent. Add in the mushroom stems and zucchini, 2 to 3 minutes. Cook mushrooms without stirring, until they are caramelized, 4 to 5 minutes. Reduce heat to medium. Toss mushrooms, and season with salt and pepper. Add in tomatoes, and cook until mushrooms are well browned, about 5 minutes more. Add garlic, and cook until garlic is golden and fragrant, about 2 minutes. Remove skillet from heat. Add wine. Return skillet to heat, and cook until wine is evaporated, about 4 minutes. Garnish with parsley. Once cooked, stuff the endive leaves. Enjoy!
Notes
The secret to mushrooms that are beautifully browned and not watery is taking a hands-off approach. Stirring them as they caramelize releases the mushrooms' liquid and causes them to steam, so leaving them alone is the way to go.

[amd-zlrecipe-recipe:12]

Vegan Stuffed Mushrooms

vegan-stuffed-mushrooms.jpg

Growing up my mom would always make bacon stuffed mushrooms for the holidays. They were always a hit and a family favorite. This inspired me to recreate these perfect two bite hors d’oeurves and gave it my own touch…of course I made it vegan, raw and gluten-free (sorry this is not a nut free dish!). The mushroom stuffing is made from raw cashews…it’s sort of like a cashew hummus. If you wanted to use garbanzo beans (chickpeas) instead of cashews, follow the directions. You won’t need to soak the garbanzo beans..just follow the directions on the back of the packet on how to cook (sorry, we don’t buy canned foods in family ;). [amd-zlrecipe-recipe:4]

Health Benefits

Cashews, like most nuts, are rich in protein and iron (they satisfy 10% of our daily requirements in just a single ounce), but cashews are a bit different in that they are also a very good source of quality amino acids. The website Nutrition Data lists cashews as a “complete or high-quality protein” due to their high amino acid score. Mushrooms are also rich in calcium, iron, potassium, copper and selenium (very good for health of bones, teeth, nails, hair and as an anti oxidant).

Follow @valeriefidan and tag your awesome food photos with #letsregale! As always, all opinions, as always, are my own. Photos taken with iPhone; edited in Camera+ and instagrammed.

Gluten-Free Tofu "Chicken" Nuggets

tofu chicken nuggets If there is one thing that I absolutely miss about eating gluten filled foods, it’s chicken nuggets (and baguettes). McDonald’s chicken nuggets to be exact. Yes, you read that correctly. The white mystery meat chunks that are tasty to little mouths and perfectly shaped, coated in a crispy golden brown. Don’t worry, I find that odd myself. I don't eat processed, fast food. But, I guess when you are not allowed to have something, you crave what you can’t have. Before discovering that I had a gluten intolerance in 2009, I honestly can’t remember the last time having a McNuggets. I think it might have been circa 1990.

The other day I decided to recreate these and settle my craving. Surprisingly, they turned out better then McNuggets. Plus, they are a whole lot healthier (and dimethylpoysilaxne free).

What You'll Need

For the Tofu

  • 1 (14-oz) block “Extra Firm” Tofu
  • 1/4 cup Cornmeal (I used the Maseca brand)
  • 1 Tbs. Nutritional Yeast
  • Salt and ground Pepper to taste
  • Cumin 1/2 teaspoon
  • Coriander 1/2 teaspoon
  • Oregano 1/2 teaspoon
  • Chili Flakes to taste (optional; to taste)

For the Ketchup

  • 2 Pureed Tomatoes
  • 3 tbsp Sugar
  • 1/4 cup Water
  • 1/4 cup Rice Vinegar
  • 2 tsp Cornstarch

Pre heat oven to 350 degrees

What You'll Need To Know

Tofu “Chicken” Nuggets. Slice the tofu into cubes/1-inch thick slabs. But before that make sure that drain any water and pat it dry completely. Mix the remaining ingredients in the “Tofu” section in a pan. Next add the tofu cubes to this mixture.

In a shallow (12 inch non stick) pan heat some 3/4 cup of vegetable oil until shimmering in med-high heat. Carefully add the tofu to the oil turning it until its crisp and golden on all sides. It takes about 3-5 minutes. Gently lift the tofu and drain them on paper towels. Transfer them to 350F oven to keep them warm.

Ketchup. Puree tomatoes and whisk all the ingredients mentioned in a small saucepan. Cook over med-high hear, whisking constantly, until the sauce is hot and thickened. take around 5-7 minutes. Cover and set aside to keep warm.

xxo, valerie

Follow @valeriefidan and tag your awesome food photos with #letsregale! As always, all opinions, as always, are my own. Photos taken with iPhone; edited in Camera+ and instagrammed.