Tag Archives: Ani Phyo

What’s Been Cookin’ (And A Tasty Protein Shake)

It’s about time I shared with you the main reason for me being so inconsistent and sporadic with my posts these days (by the way, A BIG thank you to many of you who have written asking me ‘what’s up?’).

Well, I am thrilled to announce that I have gone back to school! 🙂 CSNN study booksNot as a teacher, as some of you would suspect (I work as an occasional school teacher in my small town). I am back to school as a student and loving every minute of it. It really feels good to hit the books once again. Most importantly, it feels good to finally work on completing something I started nearly 15 years ago.  By the end of 2015, I hope to have earned my certificate in Holistic Nutrition from The Canadian School of Natural Nutrition. Yay!!

Never give up on a dream just because of the time it will take to accomplish it. The time will pass anyway. ~ Earl Nightingale

I do realize that earning my Holistic Nutrition Certificate may involve some blood, sweat and tears, but I’m up for the challenge. At 45 years of age, it’s been some time since I’ve had to take tests and write reports. Thankfully, my busy family is on board and they are giving me all the love and support I need to fulfill my goals.

I have many interests and hobbies and one of them is this food blog. While I study, I will continue to post all the delicious gluten-free and plant-based dishes that are palate-approved by my family and friends. However, for the next little while my posts will be a little “here and there”. If time goes by between posts, as it so easily does, please know that I will be back!

If you haven’t already done so, I would love for you to like my Facebook page. I tend to use Facebook to share tidbits of interesting health and nutrition info, as well as recipes so worth trying. Lately, I’ve been inspired by the many vegan athletes fulfilling their dreams. You’ll see a few of those stories on my fb page, too.

Now…back to the books, but first I’ll whip up a shake.

PINEAPPLE PROTEIN SHAKE (from Ani’s 15-Day Fat Blast)

  • 1 1/2 cups frozen pineapple
  • 1 tablespoon flax meal
  • 1 cup filtered water (I used coconut water)
  • 2 pitted dates
  • 1 teaspoon spirulina*

Place all ingredients in a high-speed blender and blend until smooth. Ani Phyo, an award-winning chef and raw food guru,  says it will keep in your fridge for two days. I seem to drink it within minutes! 😉

* Spirulina is a microscopic blue-green algae. But don’t let that turn you away!  This superfood contains high amounts of protein, essential amino acids, essential fatty acids, vitamins and minerals. You can find it in many natural health food stores. I have seen it in powder form or in pressed tablets. I like to purchase it as a powder, so that I can add it to a variety of recipes. On its own, it tastes like seaweed.  If this is not your choice flavour, rest assure – you will not taste it in fruit smoothies like this one!!

Cheers!! 🙂

Pineapple Protein Shake


Zucchini Noodles – A Raw Meal

zucchini noodles

My turning slicer has been one of my best kitchen gadget purchases.  Costing less than $50 Cdn, it’s been a wise investment in our health.  I love how I can take a zucchini, carrot, beet or sweet potato and transform each into a beautiful plate full of spaghetti-like noodles.

Mixed with a creamy sauce consisting of nuts, these dishes are to die for!  A raw marinara sauce is good too, but I prefer the creamy “nut based” sauces full of ginger and garlic. This dish is not only delicious, but it is filling.  You would never believe that a plate full of raw vegetables and nuts could fill your belly to the max, but it does.  And, that’s not just me talking.  My occasional meat-eating, dairy-loving husband agrees!

Pictured above are the zucchini noodles I made for our dinner last night.   The sauce was easily made using a glass bowl and a whisk.  The organic zucchini I purchased the day before was put through my turning slicer about an hour and half prior to eating.  I prefer to let the noodles sit and dry for a bit on a large dinner plate before I mix them with the sauce.

I try to make about 50% of our meals RAW during most of the year.  In the summer, it is naturally more with all the vast in-season fruits and vegetables available at our local farmers’ markets and organic grocery stores.  We didn’t always eat this way, though.  Yes, our meals were (mostly) vegetarian, but maybe only 10% raw because I didn’t know of all the creative ways to present vegetables.

It was my sister-in-law, Sharon, who first introduced me to the raw food diet.  I believe it was in the early  summer, a couple of years ago, at our family cottage.  She brought to the dock a variety of raw food books – “Ani’s Raw Food Essentials”, “Living Raw Food”, and“Going Raw”, just to name a few.  I was intrigued!  Honestly, I never thought raw foods could look so darn appetizing.  Don’t get me wrong, I have always loved every vegetable out there, but these “un-cookbooks” were making my mouth water!  The photos in these books showed dishes of soups, noodles, crepes, wraps and the yummiest looking desserts.  All the things we love.  (And to think that I believed raw food meant only big salads and beautifully cut carrot sticks!).

Below is a photo of my turning slicer.


If you are a little curious, give this recipe a try.  Purchase a spiralizer or turning slicer.  If you are in the Toronto area, I would like to suggest that you visit Wanigan Organics. When you are in there, talk to Sharon and be sure to try their raw banana crepes or raw banana crackers. Yum!

Don’t hesitate to change the veggies up a bit.  I’m constantly doing that. You can also substitute the cashew butter for any other nut butter.  I’ve done that a few times.  For this dish, I used what was available in my fridge.

This recipe is inspired by Ani Phyo’s recipe for sesame noodles in Ani’s Raw Food Essentials.

Zucchini Noodle Sauce

  • 1/4 cup cashew butter
  • 1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil (or raw sesame oil)
  • 2 teaspoons  coconut aminos*
  • 2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne
  • 1-2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 teaspoon fresh ginger, minced
  • 6 tablespoons water

Place all ingredients in a small blender or use a handheld blender to blend until smooth.  Not wanting to dirty mine, I whisked all ingredients together in a large bowl.

*Coconut aminos is a soy-free seasoning made from the nutrient-dense sap of a coconut tree.  It contains 17 naturally occurring amino acids, vitamin C, as well as a spectrum of B vitamins.  If you can’t find coconut aminos, you may substitute it with a tamari or soy sauce.

Zucchini Noodles

  • 1/2 cup sliced and seeded red bell pepper
  • 3 stalks of green onions, thinly sliced
  • 1 cup red cabbage, thinly sliced
  • 4-5 zucchini
  • 2 medium sized carrots
  • handful of pea sprouts or other sprouts

One at a time, turn zucchini and carrots on turning slicer to form spaghetti-like noodles.  Toss in a large bowl with sauce and all the noodle ingredients.  Top with chopped nuts.

Bon appetit!!