Spring Swap - Yam Toast by Shelby Stewart

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This spring we want to help you make some easy lifestyle changes which have a big impact. Sometimes we get in the habit of buying the same things over and over, forget the importance of variety, and therefore miss out on nutrient diversity which is the key to a well-balanced diet. Bread is a staple in many people’s lives. Some of it is super nutrient dense while some of it is not. We love bread and absolutely don’t think cutting it out cold turkey is something that you should do (unless of course you always feel like garbage after eating it), however, maybe consider occasionally swapping your morning toast for a couple slices of fully loaded toasted yams/sweet potatoes and seeing how you feel. Yam toast is a fun and cost-effective way to ensure you are getting mega nutrients, and is perfect for breakfast, lunch or dinner!

Why yams & sweet potatoes are awesome:

Okay, first of all, we need to clarify that yams and sweet potatoes are two different vegetables, though they look very similar! There are also different varieties of these two starchy veggies, however, all share a similar flavour profile that is starchy and slightly sweet making them perfect for your toast creations. We encourage you to mix it up and grab a few different varieties when you’re shopping - For this recipe we used a sweet potato and a yam.

Yams and sweet potatoes are very high in fibre and packed with nutrients. They are full of antioxidants, and vitamins C, A, B3, B5, B6, potassium, manganese, and copper.

Adding these starchy veggies into your life is sure to keep you glowing from the inside out!!


How to make yam toast:

  1. Cut your yam lengthwise into medium-thick slices.

  2. Toss the slices onto a baking sheet with a fat of your choice (coconut oil or ghee are best as they have a high smoke point).

  3. Roast the slices at 425F for approximately 40 minutes, flipping them once after the first 20.

  4. We suggest you make a bunch of slices and store them in the fridge for later. They are easy to throw in the toaster or frying pan for whenever heart desires.

  5. Add your toppings…. We teamed up with Mia Shettler (@the_wellth) and created some killer yam toast topper recipes to try!


Roasted Bananas + Walnut Lucuma Butter

What you will need:

1 Banana
Walnut Lucuma Butter (recipe here)
1 Tbsp Bee Pollen
Sea Salt

What to do:

  1. Slice your banana(S) length-wise and roast in the oven at 425F for 20 minutes, flipping once after 10 minutes. Throw them on the pan with your yams to be extra efficient!
  2. Spread a generous amount of nut butter on your freshly toasted yam slice(s) and top with the roasted bananas - We chose mash ours!
  3. Sprinkle with bee pollen and sea salt.

Crunchy Peanut Butter + Blueberry Chia Seed Jam

You will need:

1 Cup Blueberries
2 Tbsp Chia Seeds
1 Tbsp Lemon Juice
2 Tbsp Pure Maple Syrup

Crunchy Peanut Butter

What to do:

  1. Add berries to a small saucepan. Over medium-low heat, stir the berries until they start to breakdown. Stir frequently, approximately 5-7 min.
  2. Remove from heat & use a fork to mash the berry mixture until you achieve the desired texture.

  3. Stir in the fresh lemon juice & pure maple syrup.

  4. Add chia seeds & stir until well combined. Allow jam to thicken & transfer to a glass storage container or mason jar (you can store it in the fridge for 10-12 days).

  5. Spread a generous amount of peanut butter and freshly made jam on your toasted yam slice(s) and sprinkle with chia seeds.

Basic Roots Cashew Nut Cheese, Pea Shoots + Edible Flowers

What you will need

Basic Roots Cashew Nut Cheese
Pea Shoots
Edible Flowers
Sea Salt

What to do:

  1. Grab some Basic Roots cashew nut cheese - For our recipe, we used the pink peppercorn flavour! You can find Basic Roots products at Amaranth, and Community.

  2. Whip the nut cheese with a fork to get all the great spices sprinkled on top mixed in.

  3. Spread a generous amount on your freshly toasted yam slice(s).

  4. Top with pea shoots, edible flowers, and sea salt


Avo-Collagen Mash, Chilli Peppers + Cumin

We love avocado and we love collagen, so this was bound to happen….

You will need:

½ Avocado
1 Scoop Collagen Peptides
1 Tbsp Lemon Juice
1 Tsp Dried Chili Pepper Flakes
1 Tsp Cumin
Sea Salt

What to do:

  1. Mash collagen, avocado, lemon juice and a pinch of sea salt together
  2. Spread a generous amount of the avo-collagen on your toasted yam slice(s)

  3. Sprinkle with the chilli pepper flakes

  4. There’s lots of protein in the collagen however, we recommend adding an egg to the top of the mash for an extra kick of protein, and even more healthy fats!

 


We hope these toppings inspire you to make your own creations!

- Jamie & Mia

Yam Recipe & Photography by Jamie Owen
Topping Recipes by Mia Shettler (@the_wellth)

Coconut Curry Popcorn by Shelby Stewart

Not only is this a perfect Superbowl Snack, it also has a lot of health benefits! Turmeric is anti-inflammatory,  a word we've been hearing a lot lately.  Inflammation affects every part of the body and can manifest itself in ways we don’t even expect. Everything from a weakened immune system to anxiety, which means that anything we can do to reduce inflammation is a good thing. Coconut oil is a great source healthy fats, which play a huge role in brain health, immune function and a healthy heart!

Fun Fact: When using Turmeric, be sure to include Black Pepper, it increases your body’s ability to absorb the benefits and use them efficiently!

Ingredients:

    ½ tsp Curry Powder·
      ¼ tsp Turmeric Powder·
      1/8 tsp Ginger Powder·
      1/8 tsp Black Pepper·
      ½ tsp Nutritional Yeast·
      3 tbsp. Coconut Shreds·
     Coconut Oil to drizzle

How to Make This:

1. Combine all ingredients and mix well.
2. Cover the popcorn in melted coconut oil, you need enough for the mixture to stick. Enjoy!

 

 

Recipe by Maggie Archibald

Cru NYE Cocktails with Dakota Hines by Shelby Stewart

We caught up with Dakota Hines from Blanco to create some amazing Cru Cocktails for NYE. 
These drinks will blow your mind. If you aren't up for making them yourself - head on down to Blanco and bring Cru with you - if you ask nicely he just might make you one!

Tiki Town

Ingredients:
2 oz Pumped Up Kicks
0.5 oz Appleton’s rum or other Jamaican rum
0.5 oz Bacardi Superior or other white rum
0.5 oz Hornitos anejo or other anejo tequila
1 oz fresh lime juice
0.75 oz BG Reynolds Falernum
1 dropper Bittermens Elemakule Tiki bitters

Combine all ingredients in a Boston shaker. Add ice and shake for 10 seconds. Strain into a tall glass filled with ice. Garnish with a mint bouquet and a straw.


Mylky Way

Ingredients
2 oz Ménage a Trois
1.5 oz El Dorado 12 Year or other demerara rum
0.5 oz simple syrup (1:1 sugar to water)
6 drops Bittermens Xocolatl Mole bitters
1 egg white (optional but recommended)

If including egg white:
Combine all ingredients in a Boston shaker. Shake vigorously without ice for 30 seconds. Add ice and shake again, this time for ~10 seconds. Fine (double) strain into a chilled martini glass. Garnish with a cinnamon stick.

If omitting egg white:
Combine all ingredients in a Boston shaker. Shake for 10 seconds and fine (double) strain into a chilled martini glass. Garnish with a cinnamon stick.

Collagen Chocolates by Shelby Stewart

Why you should eat these:

This recipe will help make your skin glow! Collagen plays an important role in so many functions of the body, including skin elasticity, moisture levels in the skin, gut health, muscle health and joint health! It also includes Schizandra and Goji Berries which are incredibly high in Vitamin C, it helps the body fully absorb and utilize the Collagen.

Schizandra Berries is used a lot in Chinese Herbalism, known for its tonifying and adatpogenic qualities, which benefit both the physical body and the mind. This berry is revered for its beautifying properties, truly making you glow! Goji berries are high in antioxidants, which help to protect the body from environmental stresses. 

Cacao is a prebiotic which feeds all of our important gut bacteria, helping to keep our digestive systems and our minds healthy and happy. 

Ingredients:

      ½ cup Cacao Butter·
      2 tbsp. Coconut Oil
      1 tsp. Vanilla Powder
      2/3 cup Cacao Powder
     1 tbsp. Collagen
     1 tsp Schizandra Powder
     1.5 tbsp. Maple Syrup
     1 tbsp. Chopped Goji Berries

How to make these:

1. Over low to medium heat, fill a sauce pan with an inch of water, place a bowl or measuring cup in the saucepan, be sure to not get any water in the bowl.

2. Finely chop (or grate) the Cacao Butter into the bowl, with the Coconut oil.

3. Once the Cacao butter and Coconut oil have melted, stir in the remaining ingredients and mix 

4. While the mixture is still warm, place your chocolate in molds! If you don’t have any molds, pour the chocolate into a lined pan.

5. Place the chocolate into the freezer for ~30 minutes, after the chocolate is set, store in the fridge as they do melt quickly!

Charcoal Pancakes by Shelby Stewart

Why you should make these:
The only thing better than pancakes are black pancakes. These are best enjoyed after a night of maybe one too many drinks. The Activated Charcoal is a very efficient detox, as it goes through the body and absorbs toxins and heavy metals.

INGREDIENTS:

1.5 cups Whole Wheat Flour
2.5 tsp Baking Powder
2 tbsp. Coconut Sugar
3.5 tbsp. Coconut Oil (Melted)
2 tsp Activated Charcoal
1 Cup Almond Milk (or other milk of your choice)
1 Flax Egg

How To Flax/Chia Egg:

1. Blend Flax/Chia Seeds in a blender
2. Combine 1 tbsp. Flax with 3 tbsp. Water
3. Place in fridge for about 15 minutes

These are great and can be substituted for a real egg!

 

Sage + Balsamic Root Chips by Shelby Stewart

The benefits that come with making this: 

This recipe is so simple, you can experiment with different root vegetables and loads of different flavours. So often the packaged foods we buy have unnecessary and often harmful ingredients in them. By making our own we know exactly what’s in them, and it’s way more rewarding! 

What you will need:

- Beets
Large Sweet Potato
- Ground & Fresh Sage
Olive Oil
Balsamic Vinegar
- Sea Salt

 


How To Make:

1.     Preheat oven to 350° and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
2.     Slice root vegetables very thinly, aim for a couple centimeters thick (I find using a mandolin works the best)
3.     Toss sliced vegetables in a large bowl with enough olive oil to cover
4.     Lay vegetables slices flat on lined baking sheet. Sprinkle on the ground sage, enough for a light dusting.
5.     Drizzle the Balsamic Vinegar onto the vegetables
6.     Bake in oven for 20-25 minutes
7.     Toss with Sea Salt to finish!

 

Love Your Gut’s, Lazy Ramen with Bone Broth by Shelby Stewart

A easy to make lazy ramen made with chicken bone broth & kelp noodles. Gluten free. 

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WHY YOU SHOULD MAKE THIS:

SEAWEED
Seaweed is a truly incredible food. Not only is it considered one of the world’s most sustainable foods (growing 9-12 feet every 3 months!), it has a long list of health benefits.

Consuming seaweed weekly can help ward off unwanted hypothyroid issues thanks to its high iodine profile. Hypothyroid issues are common amongst females due to their delicate hormonal systems. In addition to iodine it also has high levels of magnesium, calcium, iron and vitamin C which all play a critical role in maximizing your body's ability to metabolize food and absorb nutrients. Use of large scale agriculture production has depleted our soils and therefore decreased our foods mineral density. Seaweed can help fill that gap with just a couple servings a week! When purchasing seaweed always look for Canadian or Japanese varieties as the waters that they are grown in are much cleaner than that of China or Korea. There are many varieties so get tasting and to find your fave! For this recipe I used Canadian Kelp (grown in Vancouver!) and Kelp noodles, both can be purchased at Community Natural Foods here in Calgary.

MACADAMIA NUT BUTTER
Mac-nuts have the lowest amount of Omega-6’s in the nut family. Nuts are great in moderation, but too many can lead to elevated Omega-6 levels which cause inflammation, in comparison to mac-nuts have actually been shown to have anti-inflammatory properties. They are a high quality fat source which helps assimilate nutrients when combined with other foods allowing you to feel full longer. Mac-nut butter can be found at most health food stores.

CHICKPEA MISO.
Miso is a staple in Asian cultures. Generally miso is made from fermented soybeans, but you can also find brown rice based miso and even chickpea! Soybeans can cause hormonal imbalances so I always steer clear and get the chickpea variety instead...plus I find it tastes better anyway. Because miso is fermented it contributes to a healthy gut flora population and helps raise the PH of your digestive system. Chickpea miso can be found at most health food stores.

LOVE YOUR GUTS BONE BROTH. 
Bone Broth is amazing for you and The Gut Lab makes the best broth we've ever had! It’s rich in protein, collagen, and minerals. Click here to learn about their product and pick yours up today at Cru Juice in Mount Royal Village.

You will need:

4 cup bone broth (2 x Gut Lab 450ml jars)
2 tbsp macadamia nut butter
2 tsp chickpea miso
1 tsp sesame oil
1/2” chunk fresh ginger
Pinch of cayenne

Salt to taste
1 cup kelp noodles
3-4 kelp strands
Veggies of choice. For this recipe I used:

- portobello mushrooms
- cabbage
- broccoli
- carrots
- basil microgreens

Blender - Magic bullet or Vitamix work well

What to do:

  1. In a small pot heat up your broth until it starts to simmer.

  2. Add mac-nut butter, miso, sesame oil, ginger, cayenne & salt to your blender then pour broth over and blend until everything is well combined and the ginger has been minced.

  3. Pour mixture back into your pot and add vegetables, simmering until they are lightly cooked.

  4. Rinse kelp noodles and add them to the broth continuing to let it simmer until they have softened.

  5. Add kelp strands and stir gently until they are rehydrated.

  6. Top with any leftover chopped veggies and a boiled egg for an extra protein kick!

Serves 2

 

Recipe by Jamie Owen
Photos by Shelby Stewart

 

Cardamom & Fig Baked Oatmeal with Coconut Cream by Shelby Stewart

Why you should eat this:
I love this recipe because you can make it on Sunday and store the jars in the fridge for the week, they’re already portioned so you just have to grab them and top with some coconut cream. The coconut cream should be stored in the fridge, natural separation will occur, but you just have to reblend it.

This recipe is high in fiber and protein, so it will give you energy throughout the day! It will also help to promote a healthy gut and digestive system. 

What's in it: 

     1 cup Oatmeal·
      ½ cup Hulled Buckwheat·
      ¾ tsp. Cardamom·
      ½ tsp. Vanilla Powder·
      2 tbsp. Hemp Hearts·
      4 Figs (Chopped, I like fresh figs, but dried can also be used)·
      1 Flax Egg (1tbsp Ground Flax: 3 tbsp Water, place in fridge for 15 minutes)·
      1 tbsp. Maple Syrup·
      Milk of your choice (Enough to fill jars ¾ full)

How to make:

1. Preheat oven to 350°
2. Combine all ingredients together
3. Place mixture in individual Mason Jars and fill ¾ full with your choice of Milk
4. Place Jars in a water bath. The water should come about ½ way up the jar.
5. Bake in water bath for 20 minutes
6. Top w/ Coconut Cream (See below)

What's in it | Coconut Cream:

      1 cup Unsweetened Coconut Flakes·
      2 cups Hot Water·
      1 tbsp. Coconut oil

How to make:

1. Combine Coconut Flakes with hot water in a blender. Let this sit for a minute or two
2. Add the Coconut Oil and blend until smooth
3. Strain through a Cheese Cloth

Recipe by Maggie Archibald
Photos by Shelby Stewart

Coconut Butter Matcha Elixir by Shelby Stewart

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Why you should drink this: 

Elixirs like these have so many benefits, this one is brain boosting, immune building and nutrient dense. It contains matcha which is very high in antioxidants and provides a ‘clean energy’, this means it doesn't give you jitters - just focus. 

Chaga is the most amazing food, it’s adaptogenic qualities caters to what your body needs like an immune boost, brain boost, stress fighter, energizer, ect.  

The Moringa Leaf is extremely nutrient dense, a great source of protein and essential vitamins and minerals to build immunity, reduce inflammation and protect your body against environmental stresses.

INGREDIENTS:

1 tsp. Matcha Powder·
2 cups Chaga Tea
1 tbsp. Coconut Butter
 1-2 tsp Moringa Powder
½ tsp Vanilla Powder
2 tsp Honey (or to taste)

HOW TO:

1. Put all ingredients in a blender
2. Blend on high until smooth

CHAGA TIPS:

Make large batches by boiling several liters at once, add the Chaga pieces and simmer for about 30-45 minutes, this can be kept in the fridge for easy use.

Personally I prefer making Chaga myself, but an alternate and quicker route is to use FourSigma’s premixed instant Chaga.

Recipe by Maggie Archibald
Photos by Shelby Stewart

 

Beet Burgers with Sweet Potato Bacon by Shelby Stewart

WHY SHOULD YOU EAT THIS:

Because vegetables are the real MVP’s! Whole foods are truly the original superfood and the base of a healthy, happy lifestyle. It is so important to appreciate the foods we choose daily and the nutrients they can give to our bodies.

This recipe is whole foods dense, and therefore nutrient dense, the benefits could go on forever. Beets help to increase circulation (particularly to the brain) and they also have an anti-inflammatory effect. The Legumes (Chickpeas and Lentils) are high in essential vitamins and minerals but also in protein and fibre, so they are great for your gut and help to keep you satisfied. The "bacon" is not only delicious but also high in antioxidants, to help fight the effects of environmental stress on your body.

This is a burger you can feel good about eating, and it's vegan!
This recipe makes 4 large burgers. 

BURGER INGREDIENTS:

 1 cup Beets (grated), approx. 1.5/2 beets
 ½ cup Red Lentils (cooked)
 1/3 cup Chickpeas (mashed)
1 tbsp. Lemon Juice
2 tbsp. Nutritional Yeast
1.5 tbsp. Almond Butter
1/3 cup Oatmeal
1.5 -2 tsp. Grainy Mustard
Salt + Pepper to taste

 

HOW TO MAKE THIS:

1. To cook the lentils: rinse under water, add 1.5 cups of water for 1 cup of lentils, bring to boil and simmer for about 10-15 minutes
2.Mix all above ingredients in a large bowl
3.Work the mixture into paddy formation and cook with oil of choice in frying pan until slightly crispy and golden on both sides

SWEET POTATO BACON

HOW TO MAKE THIS:

1. Preheat Oven to 450°
2. Slice Sweet Potatoes to your preferred bacon width
3. Lay slices on baking sheet lined with parchment and drizzle with Olive Oil, Salt and Pepper
4. Cook for 20-25 minutes, making sure to flip them half way

Recipe by Maggie Archibald
Photos by Shelby Stewart

Tiger Nut Pancakes by Shelby Stewart

Why you need to make these:

Tiger nuts: Tiger nuts are a super special food. They are neither a seed or nut, but a tuber a.k.a. a small root vegetable. Originating from Africa, tiger nuts are extremely higher in resistance starch which is a type of prebiotic fiber. Resistance starch resists digestion and in turn feeds the healthy bacteria in our guts. Incorporating prebiotics into your diet is just as important as consuming probiotic foods! Prebiotics also have a slimming effect because they help regulate insulin levels and in turn your hunger hormones.

You will need:

¾ cup tiger nut flour
¼ cup coconut flour
½ cup milk of choice
4 eggs
1 tsp apple cider vinegar
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp vanilla extract
Pinch of sea salt
1 tbsp coconut oil for cooking

What to do:

  1. Turn on your stove burner on medium heat and add coconut oil to your frying pan. Let the pan warm up while prepping your batter.

  2. Combine all dry ingredients in a large bowl and combine all wet ingredients in a separate smaller bowl.

  3. Pour wet ingredients into dry and wisk together ensuring their are no lumps.

  4. Use a ¼ cup measuring cup to scoop pancake batter into your pan for equal size pancakes.

  5. Add whatever toppings your heart desires!

Possible toppings include…

Cacao nibs
Bee pollen
Cinnamon
Edible flowers
Fruit
Agave
Maple syrup
Honey
Nut butter, nuts, seeds…

If you prefer savoury over sweet omit the vanilla and top with avocado or smoked salmon or bacon...or all the above.

Makes 12,  3” pancakes...so serves 2 very hungry people or 4 moderately hungry people. Enjoy!

Vanilla Cranberry Camu Camu Energy Balls by Shelby Stewart

Ingredients:

½ cup Oatmeal
¼ cup Shredded Coconut (I prefer unsweetened)
2 tbsp. Pumpkin Seeds
2 tbsp. Hemp Hearts
2 tbsp. Dried Cranberries (chopped)
1 tsp. Camu Camu powder
½ tsp. Vanilla Powder
1.5 tbsp. Coconut Oil
1 tbsp. Almond Butter (This can definitely be subbed for Tahini if you want a nut free option!)
1 tbsp. Honey

 

How to make:

 - Put the Oatmeal and Pumpkin seeds in a food processor or blender until finely chopped
- Use your hands to combine all the ingredients in a bowl and stir until everything is mixed
- Work the ingredients into a ball formation with your hands and place in the fridge for about an hour to allow them to harden.

Why you should eat this:

Energy Balls are some of my favorite things to make, you can load them up with random superfoods and they still manage to taste like cookie dough. These ones in particular are crazy high in vitamin C; Camu Camu is an Amazonian super berry about the size of a cherry but with approximately 60x the amount of Vitamin C as an orange. The powder is easily digested and absorbed by your body for an instant energy boost. Vitamin C is an excellent energizer, and immune builder, it also helps your body generate Collagen, which aids in healthy, glowing skin. The added hemp hearts, oatmeal and pumpkin seeds will keep your body going, making these the perfect snack.

Camu Camu powder can be found at most health food stores and also makes for a great face mask ingredient. 

Recipe by Maggie Archibald
Photos by Shelby Stewart

Summer Salad Rolls with Kelp Noodles and Peanut Miso Sauce by Shelby Stewart

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INGREDIENTS:

·      Sliced Mango
·      Sliced Avocado
·      Kelp Noodles
·      Basil
·      Tempeh
·     Sliced Red Cabbage
·      Rice Paper

HOW TO MAKE:

1.Slice the Tempeh in strips and place in a fry pan until warm and slightly golden
2.To soften the Rice paper, dunk it in warm water for 5 seconds and lay it flat for about 30 seconds to cool, then it’s ready to roll (lol)
3.Layer the mango, avocado, tempeh, cabbage, kelp noodles and basil (for this step, less is more, it will be much easier to roll
4.Tuck in the ends and roll it up!

PEANUT MISO SAUCE:

INGREDIENTS:

·      3 tbsp. Peanut Butter
·      1 tbsp. Miso Paste (I like light miso for this recipe, my favorite is Shiro Miso)
·      2 tbsp. Olive Oil
·      1 tbsp. Lemon Juice
·      2 tbsp. Water

HOW TO MAKE: 

1.Blend all the ingredients until smooth

WHY YOU SHOULD MAKE THESE:
Sub Kelp noodles for rice noodles because they are much higher in vitamins and nutrients, without compromising any taste. Kelp is a sea vegetable and high in Iodine, which plays an important role in a healthy metabolism and thyroid function. Tempeh is a fermented soy bean and adds a great source of protein for a more substantial salad roll! Both of these items can be found at any health food store.



RECIPE BY MAGGIE ARCHIBALD
PHOTOS BY SHELBY STEWART

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GINGER True Büch Sparkling Apricot Creamsicles by Shelby Stewart

Why you should eat these:

Apricots: Summer is the perfect time to take advantage of all of the fresh fruits and veggies that are in season! The great thing about locally grown produce is the amount of nutrients they have. The longer a fruit or veggie is away from the plant/tree/ground where it came from the more nutrients it loses. This is why some carrots can taste like cardboard in the winter...take advantage of the short growing season and buy some fresh stuff! BC Apricots can be found at any farmers market, but feel free to use your favorite summer fruit for this recipe.

True Büch Kombucha: For those of you who haven't tried this beverage I highly recommend you get on the Kombucha train! This fermented drink is full of probiotics and enzymes which enhance the digestive process and keep things running smoothly. Consuming fermented foods containing high quantities of beneficial bacteria (probiotics), is important to help maintain your own gut bacteria. In turn this leads to a highly efficient digestive system which is able to break down food particles and maximize nutrient absorption. Tru Buch is a local Calgary company with lots of tasty flavours. Pick up a growler of the ginger flavour at any Cru location.

Stevia: Stevia powder comes from the stevia plant and is used as an alternative to sugar. It is 10,000x sweeter than sugar, calorie free and entirely natural! Use it to add sweetness to your dishes without increasing the glycemic index of your meal or snack. I always add a pinch to my coffee or tea in the morning...but be careful with overdoing it as you only need a tiny pinch for lots of sweet!

You will need:

- ½ cup coconut milk (full fat, preferably organic) 
- ¾ cup True Büch ginger kombucha
5 fresh apricots, pitted
- 2-3 dates, pitted
Stevia to taste
- Blender
- Popsicle mould

What to do:

1. Pit your dates and apricots and toss them into your blender.
2. Add coconut milk and blend until mixture is thick and creamy.
3. Add kombucha and blend on the lowest setting. Kombucha is naturally everscent so you want to be sure the mixture doesn't get too fizzy!
4. Taste it. If you like things sweeter add a couple pinches of stevia until you are satisfied.
5.Wait a couple minutes to let the bubbles settle, this will ensure your popsicles are bubble free :)
6. Pour into popsicle moulds and freeze for at least 5 hours.

Serve! Makes 6.

Recipe brought to you by Jamie Owen  

Walnut Lucuma Butter by Shelby Stewart

Why you should eat this:

Lucuma (Loo-coo-mah):  Pouteria Lucuma is a fruit which grows in South America. Lucuma powder has anti-inflammatory properties which can increase wound healing by promoting tissue regeneration...this also means it as anti-aging properties. REJOICE! Lucuma powder has a maple-like sweetness so it is the perfect way to and a touch of sweet to your meals without impacting your blood sugar levels since it’s glycemic index is very low.

Brain Octaine: This product was formulated by Dave Asprey, the Founder of Bulletproof (read more about this cool company here). Brain Octaine is a form of medium chain triglyceride (MCT) derived from coconut oil that is quickly used by your brain for energy. The result? Enhanced mental clarity and focus!  

Walnuts: Adding walnuts to your life is a really good idea! Eating walnuts is the easiest vegetarian way to get a hearty dose of Omega-3’s. They contain lots of B vitamins which keep your skin glowing and youthful and your hair strong and shiny

You will need:
2-3 cups Walnuts
2 tbsp Lucuma
Pinch of Sea Salt

What do you:
Making nut butter is takes time, but the end result is definitely worth it and the process is really easy! Make nut butter when you plan to be around your house for the majority of your day.

  1. Soak your nuts in water for 4-8 hrs. I like to get mine soaking right before I go to bed so they are ready for when I wake up! Soaking is important because it activates the nuts allowing you to digest all their nutrients.

  2. Turn your oven on the lowest possible temperature. This is usually 150-170F. Place nuts on a bake sheet and roast for 8-12 hrs, tossing them every 3-4hrs. The reason we roast at such a low temperature is to maintain the nutritional value of the nuts. You don't have to roast if you don't want to, but I find it really enhances the flavour of the butter!

  3. Allow the nuts to cool, then place all your ingredients in the blender and combine until you achieve your desired consistency. Crunchy, smooth or somewhere in the middle.

  4. Serve! I love eating nut butter with apples and pears...or just by the spoonful :)

 

Recipe and Photos by Jamie Owen
Follow her on Instagram for more recipes & mountain adventures

Off The Press: Interview with the Community Coordinator of Sled Island, Queenie Li by Shelby Stewart

Can you tell us a little bit about how you got involved with Sled Island and what your role is?
When I moved to back Calgary seven years ago I was looking to reconnect with the city, so I volunteered with Sled Island. It felt like it was this secret thing that was happening in the city and since then my role has grown from volunteer, to intern, to my current position— connecting the Calgary community to the festival.

What do you think Sled Island brings to the community?
The set up of Sled Island is a little different from the other festivals we see because it’s spread out throughout the [Calgary] core. We have 250 artists of all types—musicians, comedians, visual artists and filmmakers that present in 35 venues over the course of the five days. Since Sled Island first started 10 years ago we have had over 30,000 attendees participate in the festival in one way or another.

 Sled Island brings more to the community than a music festival. It’s an arts festival that ties in so many different aspects of how people express themselves and connect with one another.

What is your favourite part of Sled Island?
It might sound cliché but for me it’s really about the experience as a whole. There is so much to choose from; at peak times there are at least 10 venues that have something going on. The festival requires you to bounce around the city to really get the most out of it. You end up rediscovering downtown Calgary, seeing bands play in a small place like Tubby Dog or the United Church downtown. Have you ever been to the legion? Sled brings you to places you would normally never experience.

Do you have any tips for those experiencing Sled Island for the first time?
Bikes definitely help when you are trying to get around to all the different shows. This year we have also car2go to get people from place to place. If you don’t have access to those, there are a lot of venues that are clustered together so when you are planning out your schedule just make sure to be strategic. If you are on 10th Ave or 17th you can just go up and down the street and you will find something going on.

Honestly, the biggest piece of advice I can give is to just show up. The festival is really inclusive, all of the bands in just want you to show up. Don’t be intimidated by the line-up or how much is going on. There is something at Sled Island for everyone.

 If you get your hands on one of our programs you can find descriptions of each of the artists so it’s easy to find something that you like. In addition, our website is really interactive. Once you create an account you can favourite different things which can help you plan out your Sled Island schedule with ease.   

Get your ticket for Sled Island RIGHT HERE.

Glow Smoothie Bowl by Shelby Stewart

Why you should drink this:

This is smoothie is perfect for any time of day! It tastes amazing, will make your skin glow and ensures a speedy recovery after each of your workouts.

L-Glutamine is an essential amino acid your body needs in large amounts. It promotes digestive and brain health, muscle growth and athletic performance. You will find L-Glutamine in the supplements section at most health food stores.

Collagen is the glue that holds our body together and literally keeps us from falling apart! Incorporating collagen in your diet helps with tissue repair, revitalizes skin, reduces aging, strengths bones, hair, and nails and promotes deep sleep. You can find TruMarine Collagen in store at Cru.

Chia seeds are small extremely nutrient dense seeds. Though they have become pretty mainstream these days their benefits should not be forgotten! The seeds are extremely high in antioxidants, as well as, fiber, protein and omega 3’s. They truly are a worthwhile addition to any smoothie.

Avocado is definitely a popular fruit these days that can be incorporated in both salty and sweet dishes. Putting it in your smoothie not only makes it super creamy it also gives you a great healthy fat boost primarily in the form of oleic acid which is high in anti-inflammatory properties.

Wheatgrass is a perfect detoxifying agent; consuming it helps neutralize toxins and environmental pollutants. It contains enzymes which help protect us from carcinogens and cleanses the body of heavy metals and other toxins which are stored within its tissues. You will find the shots in the frozen section at any health food store.

What you need (serves one) :

1 cup strawberries
1  banana frozen, chopped
½ large avocado
½ cup ice
3 tbsp chia
1-2 tbsp collagen

1-2 scoop L-Glutamine powder
Stevia, honey or maple syrup to taste
1 cup almond milk (DIY here
1 tsp vanilla
2 frozen wheatgrass shots

What to do:

  1. Combine chia seeds and ½ cup of almond milk in a small container and allow chia seeds to absorb liquid and become gelatinous. This takes about 10 min, but you can also do this overnight so it’s ready first thing in the morning!

  2. Put all ingredients into your magic bullet or vitamix and blend until a  pudding like consistency is achieved.

  3. Pour into a bowl and top with nuts, chia, fresh fruit, bee pollen, coconut or whatever your heart desires!

Recipe & Photos by Jamie Owen

Staying fit all Summer Sixteen by Shelby Stewart

As fitness professionals, it's our job to discover what our clients and members need, create a plan, and to coach them toward their fitness goals. This often means getting creative with recommendations and working variety into our programming. For anyone looking to stay in shape this summer, here are 3 simple things you can do to keep things fresh and enjoy your training all Summer Sixteen!

Get outside.
You'll never regret a summer day spent in the sun and fresh air! Getting out and doing things like running, walking, hiking, and biking are a great way to incorporate what we call "active recovery". In addition to the exercise element, getting Vitamin D (a critical vitamin in which most Canadians are deficient) is really great for your health, energy levels, and mood. 

Keep doing foundational strength movements.
The summer is a time when you'll typically lean more toward going for a run or a bike ride than going to the gym. What ends up happening as people move to more aerobic long-duration workouts throughout the summer months is that they lose a lot of the basic strength they built while weight training the rest of the year. It's important to keep up your strength training all year as strength is the foundation for overall fitness, health, and longevity. We recommend continuing to do foundational movements (like squats) to keep up that base of strength throughout the summer.

Mix social with sweat.
The summer months always mean more social time (read: patio beers and ice cream). Why not pair your social time with a workout? There are tons of great classes and fitness events throughout the city all summer long that you and your bests can attend together - including our very own Second Annual Commune Games! A little competition, good eats, and socializing anyone? The patio cocktails and cool treats will be awaiting you after your hard work!

Whatever your fitness routine is, the biggest thing we recommend is to stick to some type of regular training throughout the summer! This may mean flexing your schedule and trying some new things to ensure you stay in shape. Do what works for you! 

- Team Commune

Carob Chaga Latte by Shelby Stewart

Carob Chaga Latte

Why you should drink this:

Carob:
Carob is an evergreen flowering shrub belonging to the pea family and can be found in heath food stores in the form of a powder or small chips. It is often used as a substitute for chocolate as it has a similar flavour and is naturally sweet! Unlike chocolate it contains no caffeine so it can be consumed morning or night. The tannins in carob contain gallic acid which is ananalgesic, anti-allergic, antibacterial, antioxidant, antiviral and antiseptic. Carob aids digestion, lowers blood cholesterol levels and helps keep your bones strong with it’s high levels of phosphorus and calcium.

Chaga:  
Chaga is a type of mushroom that grows on birch trees and is quickly becoming recognised as one of the world’s superfood leaders. It has the highest level of antioxidants of any food which is important for counteracting free radical damage.It is also an excellent source for vitamin D, vitamin K, multiple B vitamins, and minerals like iron, calcium, copper and zinc. Its various other constituents include betulin and betulinic acid, responsible for much of its positive effects, as well as flavonoids, polysaccharides and other phytonutrients. Consuming chaga will help keep your immune system strong, keep your skin healthy, alleviate stress as well as aid liver function and cardiovascular health. You can find chaga at any heath food store.

Coconut Oil:
Coconut oil is a particularly unique oil. It does not contain any omega 6’s and is rich in medium chain triglycerides (MCT’S) which are special short chain fatty acids that doesn’t require bile salts for digestion.They diffuse passively from the intestines into the blood and do not require modification before being used as energy for your cells. Because of this consuming the oil is said to help your body burn fat. In addition, it has many antibiotic, antiviral, antibacterial, antifungal and antimicrobial properties and is high in copper iron and selenium which are minerals important for a fast metabolism!

What you need: serves 1

- 1 heaping tbsp Carob
- 1-2 tsp chaga

- 1 tbsp coconut or MCT oil
- ¼ cup hot water
- 1 ½ cup milk of choice (see post on how to make your own almond milk)
Stevia, maple syrup or honey to taste
- blender/vitamix/magic bullet

What to do:

- In a mug or small measuring cup combine chaga and carob
- Pour hot water cover mixture and stir until well combined, making a thin paste
- Heat your milk in a pot with the coconut oil until mixture is just too touch
- Pour all ingredients into your blender including your sweetener and blend for 30 seconds until frothy

Note: It is important to consume chaga mushrooms hot in order to receive all of their benefits :)


Recipe by the lovely Jamie Owen, she is constantly mixing up healthy & delicious things so make sure you get around to following her on instagram. 
Photos by Shelby Stewart

 

 

Summer Prep with Cru by Shelby Stewart

We just passed the halfway mark in May so now it's really time to get serious about summer prep.  Here are a few things we are doing to get ready for the season ahead:

1.    Kicking off our summer prep with a 3-Day cleanse:
One of the biggest benefits of cleansing is that it helps to break bad eating habits. When you cleanse you realize when you get hungry, what you are hungry for and it allows you to take stock of your diet before you dive into a new regime. Are you getting hungry late at night? Are you craving salty foods? Once you know what you’re body wants it’s easier to plan around those cravings to avoid them.

Cleansing also helps to break down said cravings, once you are on liquid greens for three days you won’t be as likely to reach for process foods because your body won’t be used to eating them.


2.    Substituting out processed foods with a mix of greens and super foods.
We don’t like to think about it as cutting something out but rather reaching for the good instead of the bad.  Looking for a healthy meal idea? – Try this Mediterranean Quinoa Bowl our in-house nutritionist made.  Snacking throughout the day?  - Sub out the junk food with this make your own hummus recipe.

3.    Keep on track with Intermittent Cleansing
Starting a regime with a 3-day cleanse is great way to kick-start new eating habits but intermittent cleansing will help to keep you on track with your new goals and intensify the benefits of your initial cleanse. With our intermittent cleanses you give your body a digestive break once a week for four weeks with a 1-day juice cleanse.

The benefits of intermittent cleansing can lead to lower cholesterol, boost immunity and increase your overall heath.

4.    Drink Ingestible Collagen
This stuff is a one-way ticket to great skin, hair, nails, and joints. Start your mornings off by adding this to your juice or shake. You can get the to go size packages or the scoop depending on your preference.  Need a little bit more information on this stuff: check out their website.

5.    Workout
Why be moody when you can shake your booty? Challenge yourself to incorporate fitness into your regime 3+ times a week.
One Cycle Spin is a great place to get your cardio on while Barre Body is a low intensity but will burn your butt like nothing you have ever experienced. Mixing up your fitness schedule keeps things interesting and group classes increase your chances of sticking to a program.