Delicious Fresh Pumpkin Bread

By: Natasha Uspensky, CHHC

Fresh Pumpkin Bread | The Organic Beauty

Ok yes. I may have gone a little bit gourd-crazy.  I had like 5 of those festive puppies sitting around in my kitchen, and decided that Sunday night was the perfect time to put them all to good use!  I roasted up a sugar pumpkin (used in this recipe), a delicata squash, an acorn squash, and another squash of unknown origin (thanks CSA!) for a whole week’s worth of yummy soup and healthy lunches.

But this bread takes the cake (so to speak!).  Made with fresh organic pumpkin (none of that canned crap!), it makes for a delicious breakfast and has the consistency of a perfect pumpkin pie.  Plus it’s gluten-free and has no white sugar!

To make the pumpkin puree:

Cut a sugar pumpkin in half, remove the seeds (wash and save them for roasting!), and roast at 350 degrees for 45 minutes.  Let cool, then puree in food processor until smooth (it should have the consistency of apple sauce).  If puree is a little dry, add water to reach desired consistency.

Gluten-Free Fresh Pumpkin Bread

Makes 2 loaves

Ingredients:

1.5 cups fresh pumpkin puree
2 cups coconut flour
1.5 cups gluten-free flour
2 tsp. baking soda
1 cup coconut palm sugar
1 tsp salt
2 tsp. cinnamon
2 tsp. nutmeg
1/2 tsp. allspice
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup almond milk (or more, to reach batter-like consistency)
4 eggs, beaten
1 cup virgin coconut oil, melted
1 cup chopped raw walnuts
1/2 cup organic raisins or dried cranberries (optional)

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  In a large mixing bowl, stir together flours, palm sugar, baking soda, salt and spices.  Add eggs, water, almond milk, oil, and pumpkin.  Stir until smooth. Add walnuts and raisins (if using). Pour into two oiled loaf pans. (I actually had a little extra, which I poured into a muffin tin.)  Bake for 1 hour, or until a knife stuck in the middle comes out clean.  Cool for 10 minutes.  Enjoy!

Healthy Vegetarian Camping Recipes

By: Natasha Uspensky, CHHC

The Organic Beauty Healthy Camping Recipes

Since I met my husband 4 years ago, I have become quite the little camper.  But, as you can imagine, camping for me isn’t about hot dogs or dehydrated food. It’s about creating delicious, healthy meals over a blazing campfire and sharing them with friends! It’s been a really interesting challenge to find great vegetarian recipes that lend themselves well to cooking on a fire, but I’ve discovered and adapted a few favorites that we keep coming back to trip after trip.

The key for creating healthy meals while camping is prepping in advance. For all the recipes below, I prepped a bunch of the ingredients (chopped veggies for the succotash, chopped onion and garlic and mixed spices for the chili, pre-made pancake batter) the day before we left, which minimizes the mess and cooking time, while maximizing the fun and goooood eating.

Enjoy!

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This Weekend: Host a Healthy Brunch!

By: Natasha Uspensky, CHHC

Organic Beauty Healthy Brunch

The last daily action step in the Greens. Grains. Gorgeous. 30 Day Challenge last month was to plan a party, so I got crackin’ to come up with something super fun!  The hubs was heading out of town on a really cool men’s adventure in the Sierra Mountains, so I thought that would give me the perfect opportunity to host a little ladies brunch.

We had some delicious, healthy, vegetarian food, a lovely little mimosa bar, fancy infused water, loose leaf tea… the works.  And it was a great excuse to whip out our china too (I’m a big fan of using china as much as possible… screw saving it for the formal dinners!).

Check out the photos and recipes below!

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Dinner tonight: Fresh Pea Soup with Mint

 

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This delicious pea soup is light, vibrant and bursting with green goodness. Plus, it’s a snap to whip up in no time at all, making it a perfect weeknight dinner.

Fresh Pea Soup with Mint

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Seasonal Food Freak-Out: Fiddlehead Ferns!

By: Natasha Uspensky, CHHC

Fiddlehead Ferns

 

Fiddlehead Ferns are one of spring’s little delicious oddities. With their whimsical, spiral shape and delicious asparagus-meets-leek flavor, these cuties embody spring’s energy. You can find them at your local greenmarket or CSA.

This easy recipe showcases their flavor with simple seasonings and minimal cooking.

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Make Your Own Almond Milk in 2 Minutes Flat!

By: Natasha Uspensky, CHHC

In my perpetual quest to for the cleanest, most natural eating and lifestyle, I’m always looking for the next step to take to go even further, even healthier, even deeper.  I went dairy-free several years ago, and haven’t really missed it.  Organic almond milk and coconut milk are daily staples in our house, and I can’t even imagine ever drinking real milk again!

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Dinner Tonight: Detoxifying Spring Salad

By: Natasha Uspensky, CHHC

This delicious salad incorporates a whole bunch of spring’s detoxifying bounty — from mucous eradicating root veggies, to gut flora restoring probiotic greens, to lymph destagnating berries.  Quite literally, the perfect springtime supper for detoxifying, slimming, and energizing the body.

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Dinner Tonight: Acorn Squash & Apple Soup

By: Natasha Uspensky, CHHC

Squash Apple Soup on The Organic Beauty

This soup is delicious for a cool fall evening, and is amazing for beating nighttime sugar cravings.  It tastes like apple pie in a bowl!

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Flourless Blueberry Coconut Pancakes

By: Natasha Uspensky, CHHC

These amazing gluten-free, flourless pancakes are moist, absolutely delicious, and loaded with healthy fats and antioxidants.  An Organic Beauty weekend favorite!

Flourless Blueberry Coconut Pancakes

Flourless Blueberry Coconut Pancakes

Serves 3

3 large ripe bananas
5 eggs, lightly beaten
½ cup shredded dried coconut, plus more for garnish
1 cup fresh blueberries, plus more for garnish
½ teaspoon cinnamon
2 teaspoons coconut oil
Pure maple syrup or agave (optional)

In a medium bowl, mash the bananas with a fork. Whisk in the eggs and coconut until combined. If needed, you can add a little more coconut to achieve desired pancake batter consistency.  Stir in the blueberries and cinnamon. Heat coconut oil in a large nonstick pan, over medium heat, until melted. Working in batches, pour ¼ cup portions of the batter onto the skillet (you should be able to cook 4 pancakes at a time). Cook the pancakes until the bottoms are golden brown, about 2 minutes. Gently flip the pancakes and cook until golden brown on the second side, about 1 minute longer. Transfer the pancakes to a plate and repeat with the remaining batter. Stack the pancakes and garnish with additional coconut and blueberries. Garnish with maple syrup or agave, if using, and serve immediately.

Chilled Cucumber Soup with Mint

By: Natasha Uspensky, CHHC

This delicious chilled cucumber soup is super detoxifying, and is a perfect light summer dinner for those balmy nights.  The pine nuts add some bulk and healthy fats, giving the soup a super yummy consistency.  Due to the high water content of cucumbers, this soup is also amazing for beauty, hydrating skin, and weight loss!

Chilled Cucumber Soup with Mint

Serves 2

Cooking time: 10 minutes

Ingredients:

3 cucumbers, peeled and chopped
1 lemon, peeled and cut into wedges
1/4 cup pine nuts
2 cups pure water
1/4 cup mint leaves, roughly chopped
2 cloves of garlic, roughly chopped
1 teaspoon sea salt
2 tablespoons olive oil

Directions:

Blend everything except fresh mint together until smooth — about 3 minutes in a high-speed blender. Add mint and blend for 15 seconds. Garnish with as extra drizzle of olive oil and a sprig of mint or dill.  Serve chilled with some rye toast.

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