Tuesday, May 20, 2014

My Proven Method to Satisfy Your Ice Cream Craving

When people ask me what my favorite food vices are, there are always two; a good quality dark chocolate and ice cream.  While the first one can actually be good for you if you read your ingredients carefully, as outlined in this post, the latter, well.......ice cream is ice cream.  Dairy, fat, and loads and loads of sugar. Yet, I LOVE IT.

We live down the road from one of the best home made ice cream shops in Massachusetts.  Voted Best of Boston a few years in a row, it is difficult to resist!  What makes it even more difficult is the fact that I drive by this place EVERY SINGLE WORK DAY.  Temptation ensues.

When the temperature gets really hot, and the ice cream craving strikes, I realize that what my body is really craving is the cooling sensation and texture of the ice cream rather than the actual product itself. With a quick do-it-yourself nourishing dessert, you can actually trick your body into thinking it's getting the real thing.  The key is in the texture and the temperature.

Home Made "Ice Cream"

You can make a home made soft serve "ice cream" with just a few simple ingredients and your food processor:

  • 1 Frozen Banana per serving
  • A splash of Almond or Coconut Milk (around a tablespoon)
  • Toppings of Choice

Faux Ice Cream Base

It's very important that the banana you use is completely frozen, otherwise you will end up with mush .

  • Place the frozen banana in the food processor.  
  • Add a tablespoon of the almond or coconut milk. 
  • Blend

That's it!  You'll want to keep checking to make sure that the banana has the consistency of soft serve.  If it appears too chunky, add a bit more of your almond or coconut milk and process until smooth.

I typically make mine with a tablespoon of raw cacao powder for a chocolate ice cream.  Or my other favorite choice is to top with dark chocolate chunks for a twist on chocolate chip.  Of course there are so many other things you can do such as add strawberries in the banana base or on top, the same with cherries or other fruit of choice to make it uniquely yours.  Optional:  for a decadent twist, try adding almond or other nut butter to the base.  I prefer walnut butter for this recipe.

Raw Chocolate "Ice Cream"

While I certainly indulge from time to time with a delicious home made ice cream from my favorite stand (and my kids do too!), I can satisfy my cravings for ice cream with a delicious impostor on the nights of the week where having an ice cream isn't an option.  I live by the belief that moderation is the key to healthy living.  That means all things healthy, and not so healthy too.

After all, summer wouldn't be summer without the experience of a treat from the ice cream stand every now and again to take in the warmth and joy that summer has to offer.  Wouldn't you agree?

Be well,


If you like this recipe and are interested in others, check out my Seasonal Nourishing Menu Plans.

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Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Lemon Coconut Macaroons - A Nourishing Treat

My love for desserts and my passion for nutritious foods are equally matched.  Prior to learning my way around a kitchen, it didn't always dawn on me that I could have the best of both worlds. Desserts didn't always have to be unhealthy, and healthy foods didn't always have to be tasteless. When this "aha" moment hit me around 6 years ago, I decided to get to work. My mission was to create desserts that are not only healthy, but are actually good for you.  Nourishing Desserts was born!

At first it wasn't pretty.  It wasn't even that tasty.  After lots of experimentation, I figured out how to combine key ingredients together in such a way that desserts were moist and delicious. Desserts that I could actually eat for dinner if I wanted.  (just sayin........)

One of the things I learned was about sprouting.  Sprouting is essentially taking a food that is already packed full of nutrients, and multiplying its health value.  Items such as raw nuts and seeds are primed to be soaked.  For this particular recipe, it is not necessary to have the nuts reach complete sprouting stage, but soaking the nuts prior will have extreme health benefits for your digestion. Soaking breaks down enzyme inhibitors and aids in digestion.  It will break down the protein and starches to release the vitamins and minerals and make them more available for digestion.

According to About.com, sprouts are incredibly nutritious; especially for those on a raw food diet. Studies show remarkable levels of B Vitamins, as well as Vitamins C, E and A (up to 15 times the original content!). Some folks refer to sprouts as "pre-digested" food due to this breaking down process in the sprouting stage of life. This makes the sprouts far easier to digest than the original seed, bean, nut or grain. The heightened quantity of enzymes is another factor that aids in their digestion. Sprouts can be eaten at any meal to help the digestive process along and keep raw living nutrition pumping through your blood.

Lemon Coconut Macaroons

In my Seasonal Menu Plans, I feature a Nourishing Dessert each week.  This particular one I was going to save for the Nourishing Summer Menu (to be released on June 1st) but I couldn't wait, it's just that good!


  • 1 cup raw almonds (soaked overnight, drained, and rinsed is best)
  • 1/2 cup raw cashews (soaked overnight,drained and rinsed is best)
  • 3 Tablespoons coconut oil
  • 1 Tablespoon coconut butter
  • 3 Tablespoons raw, local honey
  • 1 lemon - its juice and its pulp
  • Unsweetened shredded coconut (enough to roll your macaroons)

Place all ingredients (with the exception of the unsweetened shredded coconut) in a food processor. When squeezing the lemon juice, ensure all seeds are removed.  Then take a spoon and scoop out as much pulp as you can and place in processor.   Blend well.  (You'll have to open the lid a few times and push down the mixture with a spatula).  When the mixture has formed the consistency of a dough, roll into macaroons.  (mixture will yield around 12-17 macaroons depending on how large you decide to make them).  When formed, roll the outsides of your macaroons in the shredded coconut (on a plate or bowl is best). Place in the freezer to set, around 20 minutes.  Then transfer to refrigerator where they should be stored until eaten.  Lasts up to 4 days refrigerated. 

Enjoy with a cup of tea, a sparkling summer beverage, or on its own.

Be well,


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