Friday, October 7, 2011

VEGAN Pumpkin Pie

Happy Thanksgiving Everybody! For those who are VEGAN or Lactose Intolerant (and, frankly, who isn't?). I tested this recipe this morning, and at 7:30PM it was 3/4 gone already!
Read through to get the blueprint for the VEGAN almond pie crust, too.
1 (15 oz.) can (preferably organic) pumpkin puree (no sugar or other additives, check the label)
¾ cup “Spoonable” brand stevia or equivalent (OR LESS – TASTE IT! Let the spices do the talking!)
½ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
½ teaspoon ground ginger
¼ teaspoon ground cloves
(freshly grated nutmeg if you have it on hand)
4 oz. organic coconut cream
8 oz. unsweetened almond milk, original or vanilla flavor
1 slightly cooled almond pie crust (see recipe below)
Preheat oven to 425 degrees
1) Combine all the ingredients. I use a high speed blender.
2) Pour into a cooled almond pie crust.
3) Bake 15 minutes at 425 degrees.
4) Reduce heat to 350 degrees and bake for an additional 35 - 45 minutes.

VEGAN Almond Pie Crust
1 1/2 cups blanched almond flour
1 pinch of kosher or sea salt
1/2 pinch of stevia  to very lightly sweeten (less is more)
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

Mix dry ingredients. Add E.V.O.O. and thoroughly combine. Press into glass pie plate.
Bake at 350 degrees for 7 to 8 minutes. You don't want the crust to brown.
Remember to turn up the oven to 425 once the crust is done. You bake the pumpkin pie at this higher temperature for just the first 15 minutes.

Thursday, September 15, 2011


Berries are the bounty of the summer season. But they're also kind of delicate. Raspberries in particular seem like they can mold before you even get them home from the market. There's nothing more tragic than paying $4 for a pint of local raspberries, only to look in the fridge the next day and find that fuzzy mold growing on their insides.
By way of the "forward" option on gmail, Cliff shared this excellent tip on how to salvage berries that are starting to lose their luster. Now I'm here to share a tip on how to prevent them from getting there in the first place:
Wash them with vinegar.
When you get your berries home, prepare a mixture of one part vinegar (white or apple cider probably work best) and ten parts water. Dump the berries into the mixture and swirl around. Drain, rinse if you want (though the mixture is so diluted I find you can't taste the vinegar,) and pop in the fridge.
The vinegar kills any mold spores and other bacteria that might be on the surface of the fruit, and voila! Raspberries will last a week or more, and I've had strawberries go almost two weeks without getting moldy and soft. So go forth and stock up on those pricey little gems, knowing they'll stay fresh as long as it takes you to eat them.

Monday, September 12, 2011


FINALLY! A pizza dough that Maximized Living doctors and patients can prepare, eat, and savor without feeling guilty or bloated, or both!

1 ¼ cups Almond Flour
¼ cup ground flax meal
¼ to ½ tsp. kosher or sea salt
¼ tsp. aluminum free baking soda
1 egg, beaten with a whisk
1 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
1 tsp. seasoning of choice – Italian seasoning; roasted garlic powder (optional)

Mix all ingredients together until they form a ball.
Roll the “dough” into a ¼ inch pizza crust on a sheet pan with a silpat liner or piece of parchment paper.
(To make this easier, top the dough with another piece of parchment paper when you roll it out; then peel off the parchment paper when you have it the way you want it.)
Bake at 350 degrees for 10 to 15 minutes.
Remove from oven.
Top with your favourite "Maximized" pizza ingredients. Left-over "Maximized" ingredients are fine.
Return the pizza to the oven for another 10-15 minutes (this is a slow, lower heat pizza).

Sunday, September 11, 2011


I have been promising to blog this recipe for months. Sorry it took so long. I know you will find it worth the wait. We love it for Sunday dinner dessert.

1 1/2 cups almond flour
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
stevia equivalent to 1/2 tablespoon sugar
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract

Combine all the Crust ingredients and press into an 8" x 8" baking dish. Bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes. While the crust is baking, assemble the lemon topping mixture:

Lemon Topping Mixture:
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
stevia equivalent to 1/2 cup sugar
3 large eggs
the zest of a lemon
1/2 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice

Combine all the lemon topping mixture ingredients in a blender.
When crust has baked for 15 minutes, pour the lemon topping mixture over the crust and return the crust and lemon topping mixture to the oven to bake at 350 degrees for another 15 minutes. Remove from the oven.

Let the finished product cool in the baking dish for 30 minutes, and then chill it in the refrigerator until chilled through - about another 30 to 45 minutes. Cut into squares. (Nice to have dessert finished and waiting while you eat your dinner, right?)

Monday, June 20, 2011


I have been wanting to post this recipe for about three weeks. The trouble was, every time I baked one of these delicious desserts, we devoured it so quickly that I could never get a picture of it!

5 (preferably organic) Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored and chopped into bite sized pieces
1 pint fresh blackberries
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract (no sugar – check the label)
2 tablespoons blanched almond flour
1 cup blanched almond flour
¼ teaspoon kosher or sea salt
¼ teaspoon baking soda
2 ½ tablespoons olive oil
Stevia or organic xylitol (from birch trees - not from corn) equivalent to 2 tablespoons of sugar

Place apples and blackberries in a large bowl
Sprinkle with lemon juice, vanilla, and 2 tablespoons blanched almond flour, tossing to incorporate all ingredients
Place apple-blackberry mixture in an 8” x 8” baking dish, and set aside
To make topping:
In a medium bowl, combine almond flour, salt, baking soda, stevia (or organic xylitol), and oil.
Crumble topping over apple-blackberry mixture.
Cover with tinfoil and bake at 350° for 60 to 75 minutes until fruit is juicy and bubbling.
Remove from oven and uncover.
If topping is lightly browned, allow to cool for 10-15 minutes.
If topping is not yet browned place in oven uncovered for 5 minutes, or until lightly browned.
Note: Remember: Lightly browned is what you're after.
Delicious warm or cold.

Saturday, May 28, 2011


Bruschetta is made with simple ingredients that provide a powerful flavour return on your investment. Make it with the highest quality and freshest ingredients you can find. Summer gardens will soon be a source for most, if not all, of these delicious flavours. Here’s a recipe I like to use.
  • 2 lbs. fresh tomatoes (roma, heirloom, beefsteak...whatever is in season is best)
  • 1/2 fresh onion
  • 4 cloves fresh garlic
  • 1 bunch fresh basil
  • 4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • sea salt and fresh ground pepper

Chop, mix, and season. Yum.

Sunday, May 15, 2011


We have used this bread for anything we would have used traditional bread for in the bad old days, including sandwiches and croutons.
Note: Be sure to read the next post here, "Almond Flour Revisited," before you attempt this recipe.

1 1/2 cups ground flax meal
1 teaspoon kosher or sea salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoons cream of tartar
6 eggs
1/4 cup olive oil 
1/2 cup water
4 tablespoons caraway seeds

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Grease a loaf pan with olive oil or (better still) coconut oil. I like to add a piece of parchment for easy removal after baking.

Mix dry ingredients in one bowl except for caraway seeds.
Mix wet ingredients in another bowl.
Stir wet ingredients into dry, then mix in caraway seeds.
Allow batter to sit for 1 or 2 minutes to "thicken."
Pour the batter into the loaf pan, and bake for 50-60 minutes.

Cool and serve.


I have wanted to share a few important links and recipes with all of you for quite a while. Sorry for the delay. First, I want to talk about Almond Flour, Almond Meal, the difference between the two in recipes, and the cost factor.
I avoid purchasing almond flour in the grocery store at around $15.00 per pound. One example of almond flour you will find in retail stores is Bob's Red Mill. This product, really more of an almond meal, has a very coarse texture. I do not recommend using Bob's Red Mill almond flour in my recipes, although, it will yield a decent result – just not the amazing results that a finer textured Almond Flour will produce. The least expensive almond meal I have seen locally is in the “Bulk Barn,” where the cost is roughly $9.39 per pound. In the bulk stores, it is referred to as “ground almonds,” and that is closer to the truth of its texture. I prefer to purchase almond flour of the finest quality and texture online where the price is considerably less than retail in either the grocery store or in bulk. Of course, there are shipping costs, which add to the bottom line price. Ultimately, almond flour is still expensive, but it is packed with protein and flavour, allowing me to have baked treats like cupcakes and breads. So for me, it is worth the cost.
Here in Canada the best link to order almond flour online is:
JK Gourmet at 1-800-608-0465.
Search the website carefully. You are only interested in the blanched almond flour! You will be buying in bulk from JK Gourmet, but you will save money, your results will be wonderful, and you will have plenty on hand when you need it.
Other online sources, best for US orders, are:
Benefit Your Life (organic) at 1-877-295-2407
Honeyville at 1-888-810-3212
In the US, you can purchase smaller amounts per online order, which, based on your budget, might be helpful.
I store my almond flour in the freezer, taking out 8-10 cups at a time to keep on hand at room temperature. Trying to use frozen almond flour is more work than it’s worth.
By the way, if you have enjoyed the almond flour recipes in GOOD FOOD using almond meal or ground almonds, you will enjoy those recipes even more using this better quality almond flour. You need not make measurement adjustments.
I will follow this post with a recipe which, thanks to the finer textured almond flour, I have really enjoyed, “Dark Rye Bread.”

Saturday, April 16, 2011

MULTI "GRAIN" Crackers

On the Maximized Living Advanced Nutrition Plan, and in GOOD FOOD, you will find a lot of recipes for terrific dips and spreads. By now, you may be tired of using celery and red pepper to scoop up these delights. This cracker recipe is surprisingly easy, and really tasty. When I come home from school, I especially enjoy one or two of these crackers with plain old raw almond butter!

1/2 cup blanched almond flour (see Almond Flour Revisited)
1/2 cup raw macadamia nuts
1 tablespoon coconut flour
1/4 cup raw pumpkin seeds
2 tablespoons raw sunflower seeds
2 tablespoons raw sesame seeds
2 tablespoons organic hemp seeds
1 tablespoon ground flax meal
1/2 teaspoon kosher or sea salt
1 tablespoon coconut oil
1/4 cup water

In a food processor, pulse almond flour, macadamia nuts and coconut flour until well ground and combined. Pulse in remaining dry ingredients until almost fully ground. Leave a tiny bit of texture - you'll enjoy the crunch.
Pulse in coconut oil and water. Dough will form a ball in the food processor.
Roll out the dough between 2 pieces of parchment paper to 1/4 inch thickness.
Cut into 2 inch squares, 5 rows each way.
Sprinkle with a few extra sesame seeds if desired. (Optional - I always do.)
Bake at 300 degrees for 20 to 25 minutes.
Makes about 25 crackers.

Friday, February 25, 2011


Words really aren't necessary here.

1/4 cup ice-cream scoop of organic butter or coconut oil
3 to 4 squares unsweetened chocolate (your preference)
1/8 to 1/4 teaspoon NOW brand or KAL brand stevia, (to taste) - (Equivalent to 1/2 cup sweetening power)
dash of cinnamon - optional

In a saucepan, melt butter/coconut oil and chocolate squares over very low heat. Remove from heat.
Add Stevia and cinnamon.

Almond Butter Filling
1 scoop Perfect Protein Vanilla protein powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup raw almond butter
1 tablespoon pure vanilla (no sugar – check the label)
1/4 cup ice-cream scoop of organic butter or coconut oil (or a combination), well softened

Combine all the filling ingredients into a kind of very thick pudding, by mashing with a fork. This takes some mixing, and is easier if your almond butter and butter/coconut oil are at room temperature.
I use silicone muffin cups or a silpat mini muffin tin without any liner. If you do not have this, or cannot find one, use a regular or mini cupcake tin lined with regular or mini cupcake papers. This is what I have done pictured above.
Pour enough chocolate mixture to cover the very bottom of the cupcake papers.
Spoon (I use a tiny ice-cream scoop; you could use a large melon baller) a little of the almond butter filling on top of the chocolate coating.
Cover with the remaining chocolate mixture.
Chill to set.
Store in the refrigerator or the freezer.

Monday, February 21, 2011

"DORITO" Bread

This bread is the perfect accompaniment to Caesar Salad or any variety of your favorite chili. But honestly, you will find yourself wanting to munch on the bread alone. . .like the "bad ol' days" when you polished off a bag of Doritos in front of the TV.

2 cups almond flour
1 teaspoon kosher or sea salt
2 teaspoons chipotle chili powder
1 teaspoon baking powder
8 oz. organic (preferably raw) old cheddar cheese, grated
1 organic free range egg

1. Combine all dry ingredients (including grated cheddar) in a bowl.
2. In a smaller bowl, whisk egg; then combine it with the dry ingredients.
3. Knead the mixture with hands to ensure proper distribution of ingredients. The "dough" will form a ball.
4. Form the dough into a large circle about 2/3 inch thick.
5. Cut circle into 16 slices.
6. Place slices on parchment or silpat lined baking sheet.
7. Bake at 375 degrees for 9 - 10 minutes.
8. Open the oven door, turn off the oven, re-close the oven door, and leave the bread in the oven for another 7 - 10 minutes. (If you like a softer consistency, remove the bread when the initial 10 minutes has elapsed.)

Saturday, February 12, 2011


What to do for lunch? Take along this great meat alternative and terrific raw food recipe with some celery or an organic bell pepper.
A food processor makes very quick work of the preparation.

1 Cup Sunflower Seeds, Soaked 8-12 Hours
1 Cup Almonds Soaked 8-12 Hours
1⁄2 Cup Lemon Juice
1⁄4 Cup Minced Celery
2 Teaspoons of Kelp Powder
1⁄4 Cup Minced Red Onion
1⁄4 Cup Minced Parsley
2 Tablespoons Minced Fresh Dill
1 Teaspoon Sea Salt
1/4 cup olive oil
1 can (1 cup) chick peas
Process celery, onion, kelp powder, parsley, dill, and salt first.
Add drained nuts, seeds, chickpeas, lemon juice, and olive oil. Process until smooth.
Not Salmon Salad: Add 2 grated carrots to processing mix. (Core Plan only)