‘Tis the season for sweet merriment! My mission is to assist you in staying on track and not falling into the trap of overdoing the highly refined goodies this year. And so I am offering healthy recipes to satiate that old sweet tooth and yet not pack on the holiday pounds, throw off our blood sugar, or promote acidity and inflammation (and therefore suppress our immune system, promoting a friendlier environment for cancer to take hold of or flourish).
The two recipes featured this month are intended to allow to you indulge a little bit during this special celebratory time of the year. So please go ahead and enjoy yourself, and do so without suffering the guilt and inevitable consequences of eating a plethora of sugary and refined treats that are taxing to our immune system -especially when we need it to be particularly strong at this time of the year!
The following tasty lemon morsels are gluten-free (it’s always good to take a break from glutenin case you are even a little bit sensitive) and contain unrefined sugar as well as healthy fat. Organic butter is a stable, baking-friendly, fat that will not cause unnecessary weight gain if used for occasional baking. It can even be used as a staple fat in your kitchen as long as it’s balanced with good quality cold-pressed mono and poly unsaturated fats (ie: extra-virgin olive or sesame oil and perhaps some organic, unrefined canola or almond oil; also supplying your omega 6 & 9). Organic butter (particularly grass-fed sources) also contains appreciable amounts of vitamin D, omega 3, and butyric acid; all of which are ‘anti-cancer’ nutrients. (You can also get your anti-inflammatory omega 3’s from flax, hemp, chia, salba, walnuts and of course fish such as salmon, halibut, mackarel, sardines.)
These scrumptious shortbreads are an easy and healthy upgrade from the typical holiday baking goodies, which generally contain white flour and white sugar and possibly even unhealthy fats -all in one tasty, yet dangerous little package. You could also use glutinous flour such as whole spelt flour if you prefer. I use spelt as my “all purpose” flour and it works for virtually every recipe I make, sweet or savory.
Lemon Drop Shortbread
- 2 3/4 cups organic fresh-ground brown rice flour
- ¼ cup organic corn starch (Optional. Just add ¼ more flour if you omit it)
- ½ tsp baking soda
- ½ tsp sea salt
- 8 Tbsp (1 stick) unsalted melted butter
- ½ cup brown rice syrup, maple syrup or honey
- 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
- Juice & grated zest of 1 organic lemon
- 15 almonds, pecans or walnuts, halved
- Heat oven to 350 degrees.
- Sift the flour, salt & baking soda together.
- Combine the butter, honey/syrup, vanilla, lemon zest, and juice.
- Cut butter and sugar into flour mix with pastry blender into dough (also with hands).
- Blend until smooth and satiny.
- Form into large ball and chill in fridge for 30 minutes.
- Roll with rolling pin to ¼ inch think between 2 sheets of parchment paper.
- Remove paper and cut shapes and place on greased cookie sheet.
- Press nut into the center of each cookie.
Bake for 10-12 minutes or until the bottoms are lightly browned. Makes approximately 30 cookies.
These truffles are a healthful and a pleasing surprise to the taste buds. The intermingling of raw cacao powder, rich green chlorella, smoothness of the virgin coconut oil, sweet intensity of honey, real vanilla, and the little crunch of hemp seeds makes for a dynamic and delightful treat. You may be surprised by how great healthy truffles taste!
- 1 cup hempseeds
- 2 cups raw cacao powder (or you can grind cacao nibs or use pure cocoa)
- ½ cup pure chlorella or spirulina
- ½ cup virgin coconut oil
- ¾ cup raw honey
- 2-3 pinches celtic sea salt
- 3 vanilla pods (scrape inside) – if you can’t find pods, you can use at least 1 tbsp. of vanilla extract
- A pinch of cinnamon / cardamom / cayenne, optionally, to spice it up a bit
- Mix all ingredients in a bowl until everything is mixed well.
- Roll into little balls and put in the freezer for 15 minutes.
- You can store them in the fridge until time to serve or in the freezer for several weeks.
Makes 80 (you can half recipe if needed but they will go fast!)
May you be well-nourished during this holiday season!
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