Deviled Potatoes

I’m always looking for plant based recipes to try. When I tell people about my eating habits, they often assume I eat a lot of salads. I do enjoy salads. However, there are so many healthy and interesting ways to prepare and enjoy fruits and vegetables. The possibilities are endless.

I found this intriguing potato recipe this morning, created by Lexi and Jimmy, who go by the name HomeGrownHealers on Instagram. I got to prepare it tonight!

Deviled Potatoes

Deviled Potatoes

Scrub 4 medium sized potatoes and cut in half. Use a fork to prick the side with the peeling on, and place cut side down on a cookie sheet, lined with parchment paper.

Deviled Potatoes

Bake for 30 minutes, in 400 degree oven, or until potatoes are tender. Flip potato halves over and allow to cool for a few minutes, until they can be handled.

Deviled Potatoes

Carefully scoop out insides of potatoes, placing into a bowl. I found it easier to cut around the edge of the potato half first and then scoop out the insides.

Deviled Potatoes

Add 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard and 2 tablespoons of a dairy, egg and soy free mayonnaise. I use Vegenaise. Add sea salt and pepper to taste. Mash with a potato masher or spoon, combining well.

Spoon mixture into potato shells. Sprinkle with paprika.

Deviled Potatoes

The recipe can be doubled. I fixed four potatoes, for two people, and it was the perfect amount.

This recipe made a tasty and satisfying meal! I loved the little kick of mustard. And no silverware was needed. These deviled potatoes can be picked up and eaten, just like a deviled egg.

Potatoes are a staple in my diet. They are not only nourishing and comforting, they are full of health essentials. Read about the benefits of potatoes HERE.

I appreciate Lexi and Jimmy for their creative approach to plant based cooking and their determination to heal. Follow them on Instagram for more ideas. And find me too, under the username Journey With Health Me.

Deviled Potatoes

Coconut Curry Sauce

I had fun today trying out my first recipe from the gorgeous Thrive Magazine that I purchased recently. I made notes as I thumbed through the publication, about all the recipes I wanted to create. First on my list was a coconut curry sauce.

Coconut Curry Sauce

This simple to make sauce, loaded with goodness and flavor, can be eaten over spiralized veggies, such as zucchini, or used with gluten pasta. It would be wonderful too added to stir fried veggies and brown rice or used as a dipping sauce for roasted potato wedges. This recipe was created by Julie Van Den Kerchove, a plant based chef in Belgium.

Coconut Curry Sauce

I purchased organic produce from Natural Grocers, as well as organic coconut milk. Full fat coconut milk is best, for the most flavor. Organic minced garlic and ginger in jars can be substituted for freshly minced.

After blending the sauce, I poured it into a mason jar and popped it into the fridge while I spiralized a zucchini and a yellow squash. I am in love with spiralized vegetables! They are easy to prepare, with an inexpensive spiralizer, and so good for me. I ended up with two bowls of veggie noodles.

Coconut Curry Sauce

I sliced a dozen cherry tomatoes in half, dividing them between the two bowls, and added hemp seeds. These provide protein and have a light, nutty flavor. After spooning coconut curry sauce over the raw noodles, I topped my meal with chopped cilantro.

This was so fresh and so delicious! I love curry in any form. This sauce is not too spicy. For more of a kick, increase the cheyenne pepper to taste. I have plenty of left over sauce to try in a variety of ways. I think oven roasted potatoes might be on the menu for tomorrow night, with a side of coconut curry dipping sauce!

Coconut Curry Sauce

Wild Blueberries

I have loved blueberries since my childhood. My dad’s favorite pie was blueberry pie, and that sweet dessert was my first experience with this little berry. Growing up I also enjoyed blueberry pancakes and blueberry cobbler. It wasn’t until my adult years that I ever tried eating the berries by themselves. It was fun to pick my own berries, at local farms, popping a few that were warmed by the sun into my mouth as I worked.

Wild Blueberries

Imagine my delight when I discovered that the wild blueberry, from Maine in the USA, is considered one of the most powerful foods on the earth. In Life Changing Foods, by Anthony William, he writes that cultivated blueberries, while still a nutritious food, don’t offer even a fraction of the health benefits that their wild cousins do.

Wild blueberries have learned to adapt to climate changes and they have learned how to thrive, like no other food on the planet. They have extremely high levels of antioxidants, bringing healing to any damaged part of the body. Wild blueberries are the most effective food for eradicating heavy metals and other toxins from the body. They are a powerful brain food and amazing at restoring the liver.

Wild Blueberries

Wild Blueberries

Wild blueberries can help prevent any type of cancer and they are so restorative that they are beneficial for any symptom, whether physical, emotional or spiritual. Anthony believes that in the future, the properties of the wild blueberry will be the key that unlocks the secrets of healing diseases.

This health altering berry is easy to incorporate into the diet. It is crucial to purchase wild blueberries, rather than regular berries, and the easiest way to find them is in the frozen foods section at the grocery store. I buy the largest bag available, at Walmart. Wild blueberries are readily found at most grocery and health food stores.

Wild Blueberries

Wild Blueberries

My favorite way to enjoy wild blueberries is by adding them to my morning smoothies or smoothie bowls. Combined with a banana, mangoes, cilantro and a spoonful each of Hawaiian spirulina, Atlantic dulse flakes and barley grass juice extract, these berries create a very effective heavy metal detox smoothie. I drink one of these at least three times a week.

I top pancakes, free from gluten, dairy, eggs and sugar, with thawed wild blueberries and organic maple syrup, for a healthy weekend breakfast. And for an easy and nutritious treat, combine frozen wild blueberries with frozen chunks of bananas and blend in food processor or blender until creamy. Yum!

Wild Blueberries

Add wild blueberries to water for a refreshing, fruity drink, to green salads or eat them plain, frozen or thawed. As one whose first experience with blueberries was in a pie, I love the recipe for raw wild blueberry pie, in the Life Changing Foods book. With its date, coconut and cashews crust and naturally sweet wild blueberries and mango filling, this luscious pie is simple to make and full of health boosting goodness. You can find my blog post with the wild blueberry pie recipe HERE.

This is one food I keep in the freezer at all times. I’m grateful for all that it offers to my health and well being. Thanks, Dad, for introducing me to blueberries!

Wild Blueberries

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Cilantro

I had always considered today’s featured food as a garnish or a flavorful addition to salsa and Mexican food. When I switched to a plant based lifestyle, I discovered this herb has amazing health benefits.

Cilantro is a powerfully cleansing food, removing toxic heavy metals from the brain, organs and other body systems. With its mineral salts comprised of sodium, potassium and chloride, cilantro can pass through the blood-brain barrier, pulling toxins from the brain and freeing neurons from toxic metal oxidized residue.

Cilantro is a valuable liver detoxifier and supports the adrenal glands. This herb also balances blood glucose levels, warding off weight gain, brain fog and memory problems. It’s antiviral, making it an effective weapon against Epstein-Barr, shingles and herpetic viruses. Cilantro’s antibacterial properties kill off every form of bacteria and flushes their waste from the body. For any type of chronic or mystery illness, cilantro is an important addition to the diet.

Some people dislike cilantro, experiencing a bad taste when they eat it. Anthony William, author of Life Changing Foods, writes that people who perceive a bitter or harsh flavor when eating cilantro have a higher rate of heavy metal oxidation going on. The heavy metals in their bodies are corroding at a more rapid rate, creating toxic runoff. This runoff makes its way into the lymphatic system and saliva, which results in the bad taste when cilantro is eaten, as it binds onto the oxidative debris. If someone dislikes the taste of cilantro, that could be an indicator that he or she really needs its healing benefits.

To best remove toxic heavy metals from the body, consume fresh cilantro. It is so much more than a garnish for guacamole. Try adding it to smoothies, juices, chopped in salads and salsas, and sprinkling it on vegetables, curries, and soups.

I had suffered from restless leg syndrome for years. There are several causes for this condition, including a build up of heavy metals in the body. My restless legs made extended trips by car or airplane very uncomfortable. Last year, facing long flights across the Atlantic, I decided to try detox smoothies as a way of easing my legs. Every morning, for 30 days before flying, I drank a detox smoothie, made from 1 banana, 1 cup of wild blueberries, 1 cup of frozen mango chunks, 1 orange, 1 bunch of cilantro, and a teaspoon each of hemp seeds, Atlantic dulse and Hawaiian spirulina. I did not experience restless legs at all on the flight to and from Italy, nor did I later on my UK trip. I drink a detox smoothie at least twice a week, and I have not had restless legs since.

I include this wonder food in my diet as often as I can. For lunch today I sprinkled it on my orange/avocado salad. Tonight I’ll juice it with celery, apple, and ginger. I am grateful for the healing cilantro brings into my body.

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Onions

I have not previously been a fan of today’s featured food. When ordering salads or burgers in a restaurant I would request “no onions, please”. However, that was my old way of eating. As I have embraced a plant based lifestyle wholeheartedly, I have come to appreciate the many health benefits of onions.

My opinion about onions shifted when I read about them in Life Changing Foods by Anthony William. The info I am sharing comes from the section on this versatile vegetable.

Onions are highly medicinal. They are one of the best foods available for keeping down bacterial overgrowth in the body, making them an important choice for anyone struggling with SIBO, small intestinal bacteria overgrowth.

Onions enhance the body’s production of B12. The sulfur they contain makes them naturally antibiotic. They also help to rid the body of radiation, viruses, pesticides, herbicides and toxic heavy metals. In addition onions ease joint pain, degeneration and discomfort, and help to repair tendons and connective tissue. The sulfur in onions also helps to slow iron loss.

High in the trace minerals zinc, manganese, iodine and selenium, onions rejuvenate the skin and protect the lungs. They help to combat colds and flus that cause bronchitis and bacterial pneumonia. And finally, the anti-inflammatory properties of the onion is good for the intestines, healing ulcers and soothing the intestinal tract.

This powerful veggie has gone from being a food I avoid to one that I include in my meals as often as possible. Almost every dish I prepare starts with sautéed chopped onions. They go into soups, rice and lentil dishes, curries and chili. I combine them with green peppers, carrots and celery to make veggie bowls. The huge shift for me is that I now include raw chopped or sliced red onions in salads and salsas. I even run them through the juicer occasionally along with other fresh veggies.

My attitude toward onions has changed so much that I now keep a good supply of them on hand in my kitchen. I know that if I have an onion, some vegetables, rice, and herbs or spices I can quickly prepare a wholesome, nutritious meal in minutes. I look forward to trying new recipes incorporating this wonder food.

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Apples

For many of us, an apple is one of the first fruits we remember eating as a child. They conjure up warm feelings and fond memories…crisp apples on a cool autumn day, picking apples in an orchard, bobbing for apples at a fall party, toting apple slices to school in a lunchbox. They symbolize family values, as in apple pie and gifts for school teachers. And, they represent health. We can all recite the old adage, An apple a day keeps the doctor away.

It’s good to know that apples can promote health and well being. Because that saying is more that a cute rhyme. I’ve discovered in the past couple of years just how incredibly powerful this little fruit is!

Apples play a crucial role in fighting inflammation of all kinds. They calm the systems of the body by reducing viral and bacterial loads that inflame the body. In addition, the phytochemicals in apples feed the neurons of the brain and increase electrical activity. That makes them brain food!

Red skinned apples are especially beneficial. The pigments that create that rosy color have anti-obesity properties and strengthen the digestive system. They are the best colon cleanser. Pectin from an apple rids the intestinal tract of bacteria, viruses, yeast and mold. It also helps to eliminate debris that clogs pockets in the intestines.

This powerhouse of a fruit helps to pull heavy metals from the body and detoxifies the brain of MSG. They hydrate the body at a cellular level, providing trace minerals and salts and electrolytes, making them ideal to consume after exercise or a stressful day.

There are so many flavorful ways to enjoy the healing benefits of apples, without baking them in a pie or covering them with sticky caramel.

Slice them up and eat them plain, or pair with celery sticks and dates for a snack that supports the adrenal glands. I like to dip apple slices in organic, no sugar added peanut butter, for a mid afternoon treat, or make a healthy “caramel” dip by combining 6 dates, 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon and a little water in the blender. Yum!

Chopped apples can be added to any salad, for extra flavor and a crisp texture. And they are great for juicing. Apples add sweetness naturally to juices and can be added to other fruits or greens for a refreshing drink. One of my favorite hot beverages combines apple juice with spices, orange slices and cranberries for a soothing cider. Or, if craving something sweet, apples can be sliced in two, cored, and the center filled with walnuts and a dollop of 100% pure maple syrup. Sprinkle with cinnamon and bake about 20 minutes, then serve warm. What a delicious and satisfying dessert.

Try adding an apple a day, or two or three, to your diet and see how your body and health responds.

Apple slices with a sauce of blended dates and cinnamon.

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Orange, Avocado & Green Olive Salad

I tried this gorgeous salad for the first recently, and loved it. Who would know that combining two super foods…oranges and avocados…with tangy green olives would be so delicious?

Oranges are high in vitamin C, and a coenzyme called glutathione, which activates because of this citrus fruit’s flavonoids and limonoids. These combine to fight off viruses, protect the body from radiation damage and deactivate heavy metals in the body. Oranges also contain an abundance of bioactive calcium, which the body absorbs quickly.

Avocados help to soothe the digestive system, especially for those with food sensitivities. This food, which is actually a fruit, has anti-inflammatory properties as well. Avocados are a healthy source of omega-6 fatty acids, which help to restore the central nervous system.

The recipe, from the Life Changing Foods book by Anthony William is simple to prepare.

Orange, Avocado & Green Olive Salad

6 oranges, any variety

1/4 cup sliced green olives

1/4 cup finely chopped parsley

1/4 cup thinly sliced red onion

1 avocado, sliced

Black pepper (optional)

Cut the top and bottom off of each orange. Resting the orange flat on the cutting board, cut down and around the sides, removing the peel. Slice oranges horizontally into disks and arrange on plates. Top with remaining ingredients. Sprinkle with pepper is desired. Serves 2-4.

Because Cara Cara oranges are plentiful this time of year, I used them and regular navel oranges. I found it easier to slice the oranges first, with their peels on, and then cut around the perimeter, removing the peel.

This colorful salad was fun to eat, light but filling. I didn’t add the red onion to my salad, but I enjoyed the blended flavors of the oranges, avocados and olives. It was the perfect lunch.

It was so perfect that I had it for lunch again today! I will take advantage of oranges being in season by preparing this meal often.

Aloo Matar

I tried this wonderfully comforting, fragrant meal recently. Aloo matar is a Punjabi dish from the Indian subcontinent, featuring potatoes and peas in a spiced tomato base. It is easy to prepare and a delight to savor.

This aloo matar recipe was created by Anthony William, author of several books including his latest, Thyroid Healing.

I found garam masala in the spice section of the grocery store. I added a bit more garam masala and curry powder…a double pinch, or approximately 1/4 of a teaspoon. The recipe was not only simple to create, and adaptable, it was fun. And the spicy scent that filled the kitchen created great anticipation.

I loved this aloo matar. It had the taste of India that I was craving, without being too spicy. The cilantro and squeeze of lime on top was the perfect finishing touch.

I used all organic ingredients, making this tasty meal a nutritious one as well. And is there anything more comforting than dining on potatoes and peas? I don’t think so. I will be fixing this wonderful recipe often!

Vegan Black Bean & Corn Salsa

I was looking for a healthy salsa to share at my family’s Christmas Day Smorgasbord. I contributed plant based snacks, sides and desserts. My family members brought their favorite sides or main course dishes, however, they got to sample my plant based recipes too.

I had in mind to make my sister’s Cowboy Caviar. But when I saw that the recipe called for bottles of salad dressing, I opted for this easy to make salsa that includes the fresh juice of two limes instead.

The recipe, from SparkPeople, on my first official Try This Tuesday, is not only quick to throw together, and healthy, it is pretty to look at too! And, it is incredibly delicious, as the flavors all blend together.

I omitted the cilantro, because of a family member’s dislike of it. And the salsa was still excellent. In fact, the recipe made a large bowl of salsa and I brought home a very small bowl of left overs. I used only organic, non GMO canned goods. Del Monte brand now has non GMO canned goods, as do other brands found in health conscious grocery stores, like Natural Grocers. I diced the avocado and added it right before serving.

The salsa was accompanied by organic, non GMO tortilla chips, made by Tostitos, and available in the chips aisle at any supermarket. These bite sized scoops are perfect for dipping.

The black bean and corn salsa was so good that I will be making this recipe often. It is a great side dish to take to parties or family gatherings. I can know that I am contributing food wise, and also to the health of everyone present!

Banana Nice Dream

This yummy alternative to ice cream has been a favorite this summer. Easy to make, using one ingredient, banana nice dream is sugar and dairy free. Other ingredients can be added to the basic recipe, creating a variety of flavors.

The main ingredient is ripe bananas. My grocery store often has bags of very ripe bananas offered at a discounted price. I buy up the fruit at that time. They are great used in smoothies as well.

Making banana nice dream is easy:

Cut up ripe bananas and freeze in gallon sized freezer bags. I cut up four bananas and freeze together in each bag.

Place frozen banana chunks in a good quality blender or food process and blend on high speed. I have done better using a processor. Stop frequently to push mixture down off of the sides, and keep blending.

Be patient. The bananas will become coarsely chopped. Keep going. Suddenly the mixture changes, becoming the consistency of soft serve ice cream.

Eat immediately, topped with fresh, cut up berries or other fruit. Or store in the freezer for a firmer consistency.

For variety, other frozen fruits can be added. Berries, cherries, mango or pineapple chunks are all good additions. Or a half a teaspoon of vanilla can be added to the frozen bananas, for more of a vanilla ice cream taste.

I recently made blueberry nice dream by adding 2 cups of frozen wild blueberries to the chunks of bananas. The process was the same. Suddenly the mixture changed and the bananas and blueberries blended together into a cold and creamy treat.

It is nice to have healthy alternatives to standard desserts and treats. I haven't missed ice cream, like I thought I would. I used to be a frequent visitor to Andy's Frozen Custard. My favorite treat there was a blueberry concrete. The fruit made it healthier, right? Wrong. The sugar and dairy products were not good for me, and I knew it.

It wasn't just about watching my calories or my weight. Sugar fed the inflammation in my body, making my joints stiff and painful, and it gave me severe indigestion. Milk is a mucus producer and kept my sinuses clogged, and it upset my digestive system as well. It amazes me, looking back from this place on my healing journey, that I continued to eat what I wanted to eat, knowing I wouldn't feel well afterward.

How do I feel after eating banana ice dream? I feel good…good emotionally that I am taking care of myself, and my body thanks me for not putting things into it that will create poor health.

Banana nice dream…it's a delicious win/win!