Recipes

Happy Earth Kitchen ©

Vegan Easter Brunch Menu

Cooked Meals, Fully Raw, Happy Earth Kitchen

Happy Earth Kitchen ©

Honoring Life

Spring: the season of renewal, hope and growth. New life emerges from plants and trees, baby animals are born and we feel energized with longer days and the warming sun. Easter is one of the first holidays of this season and a perfect opportunity to spend time with our loved ones, to celebrate nature and new life and to respect this life by choosing plant based Easter menus. I know that when most people think of Easter, they think of eggs, but I promise that you can create a perfect, joyous, colorful Easter menu, without the eggs, the butter, sugar and dairy. It will not only be absolutely healthy and pretty, but also guilt-free and cruelty-free.

Healthy, Colorful & High Raw Brunch Menu

Chia Parfait with plant milk and fresh fruits
Raw salad with red cabbage, blackberries and hazelnuts
Fennel Orange salad with brown rice
Spring Rolls with mango and a peanut butter dipping sauce
Bottles of Mint & Fruit infused water
Lots of herbal tea
Fresh Fruits

 

Recipes

Overnight Chia Parfait with plant milk and fresh fruits

– Blueberries fresh or frozen
– Plant milk of choice I used rice milk
– Rolled Oats
– Chia seeds
– Fresh Fruits of choice diced

Put blueberries in the bottom of a couple of jars or glasses
In a separate bowl mix rice milk, rolled oats and chia seeds
Pour into jar, on top of the blueberries
Place in the fridge overnight
Top with different kinds of fruits the next day

Happy Earth Kitchen ©

 


Raw salad with red cabbage, blackberries and hazelnuts

– Greens
– Red cabbage shredded
– Blackberries
– Pear sliced
– Hazelnuts
– Balsamic vinegar

Cut, mix, toss. Done!

Happy Earth Kitchen ©

 

Spring Rolls with mango and a peanut butter dipping sauce

– Get recipe here

Happy Earth Kitchen ©

Fennel Orange salad with brown rice

– Fennel sliced and lightly grilled in the oven
– Orange peeled and sliced
– Brown rice cooked
– Pomegranate seeded 

Place the cooked brown rice on a plate and arrange the other ingredients on top of it. Drizzle with a dressing of tahini, lemon juice and some raw agave syrup.

Happy Easter!

Happy Earth Kitchen ©

 

With Love From The Happy Earth Kitchen.

Zucchini spaghetti with raw vegan pesto sauce

Fully Raw, Happy Earth Kitchen, Recipes

HappyEarthKitchen_Courgetti6

It comes in different names: zoodles, zucchetti, courgetti to name a few. However you call it, the zucchini spaghetti is an indispensable dish of the raw vegan cuisine, simply because it is so much more than just a salad (and let’s be honest, many people still associate ‘salad’ with raw veganism). Zucchetti has that comfort food feel without the empty calories and is packed with micronutrients. Since it’s not heated, it contains digestive enzymes which enhance nutrient absorption, gut health and longevity.

To me portion control is not an option. I’m not the type of person that eats 6 small meals a day on fixed times. I believe in intuitive eating and being in touch with your hunger cues. So I eat when hungry and until full. That is one of the reasons why plant based eating and particularly raw vegan eating feels like a blessing to me. It fills, it nourishes and you can hardly overdo it, because of the fiber and water content in raw fruits and vegetables.

I wanted to share this recipe because I make it quite often, but somehow it never ended up on my website. It’s not the most innovative recipe, but it is creamy, tasty, and literally ready in under 5 minutes. To keep it raw vegan, the Parmesan from the traditional recipe is replaced with avocado, not only is it a cruelty-free alternative, but also a more nutritious one. And I don’t use olive oil because the naturally occurring fats in the avocado and pine nuts are plentiful. It’s nice to play around with the plating and see if you can make the zucchetti look fancy, but to be honest, most of the time I make myself a messy big big bowl (never skimp on the toppings) and enjoy it without the notion of portion control.

Happy Earth Kitchen ©

Happy Earth Kitchen ©

Recipe

Serves: 2 regular or 1 big portion.
Allergens: dairy-free, gluten-free, soy-free
No sugar & no added oils.

Ingredients

For the base
1 zucchini
6 cherry tomatoes cut in quarters
a couple of olives sliced
a handful of arugula or other (micro)greens

For the pesto sauce
1 avocado
A good bunch of basil
30 grams pinenuts
juice of half a lemon
black pepper to taste
optional: 1 clove of garlic and salt

Equipment
Spiralizer, foodprocessor of blender

Watch the video or read the directions below. 

Directions

– Make zucchini spirals using a spiralizer. (If you don’t have a spiralizer you can use a peeler. Slice the zucchini lengthwise with the peeler, then cut strands with a knife).
– Put all the ingredients for the pesto sauce in a food processor and mix until desired texture (I like mine a bit chunky).
– Mix the zucchini spirals and the sauce in a big bowl.
– Divide the spaghetti into 2 equal portions and garnish with cherry tomatoes, olives, arugula or other greens.

Note:
1. Opt for organic ingredients.
2. If you prefer a warm dish you can always lightly steam the zucchini spirals before mixing it with the sauce or you can use regular spaghetti.

 

With Love from the Happy Earth Kitchen.

Happy Earth Kitchen ©

Christmas Rose & Coconut Porridge Dessert

Cooked Meals, Desserts & Snacks, Recipes

Happy Earth Kitchen ©

Seasonal eating part IV

Pomegranates are still in season and since they’re considered a symbol of Christmas in Greece, I wanted to go ahead and give this beautiful fruit (or should I call it nature’s beads) a role in a Christmas Dessert.

What I really love about the plant based kitchen is that conventions about what you should and should not eat at certain moments of the day dissolve. Sometimes I eat sweet meals all day what most people would consider more appropriate as dessert. On the other hand, my desserts are not as sweet as what most people enjoy. So to be honest I couldn’t really decide if to call this rice porridge a dessert or breakfast, but I can assure you that it will look wonderful during Christmas on both your breakfast or brunch table as on your dinner menu.

This recipe is (again) easy to prepare with very few ingredients. With a hint of rose and coconut it has a very mild taste and is gentle on your stomach. Moreover it has a soft, dreamy texture, a virginal white color with Christmassy red pomegranate sprinkles and snowy coconut shred.

Watch the instruction video

Recipe

Serves:            6
Allergens:       dairy-free • gluten-free • sugar-free • soy-free • no added oils
Diet:                Fits within a Whole Food Plant Based diet (Starch Solution, Forks over Knives etc.)

Ingredients

1 cup white risotto rice Rinsed
1 liter water
1 liter plant milk of choice (I used ¾ rice milk and ¼ coconutmilk)
2 tablespoons rice starch
1 tablespoon natural rosewater

Topping
Pomegranate seeds
Coconut shreds

Method:

  • Cook rinsed rice in 1 liter water;
  • Once the water is almost completely evaporated (the rice has now already a porridge-like texture) add 1 liter of cold plant milk. Bring to boil;
  • Mix a couple of tablespoons of the cooking milk with the rice starch;
  • Add the rice starch and the rosewater to the pan, stir well;
  • Simmer and cook for about 15 min, until porridge-like texture (the cooking time may vary from stove to stove, so keep an eye on it);
  • Transfer the porridge in glasses or little bowls, let cool down and put in the fridge for at least 2 hours or overnight;

I don’t use any sugar in this recipe because the rice milk has a slight sweet taste and because I don’t think it needs to be sweet, but if you’re not used to sugar free desserts you can add in some sugar the moment you add the milk to the porridge.

This Rose & Coconut Porridge Dessert can easily be made the day or night before, which takes away the pressure off of Christmas preparations.

Have a wonderful Holiday Season.

Happy Earth Kitchen ©

Happy Earth Kitchen ©

With Love from The Happy Earth Kitchen

 

Happy Earth Kitchen ©

Starchy Low-Budget Lentil Stew

Cooked Meals

Happy Earth Kitchen ©

Seasonal eating part III

This meal happened because of the weather. The temperatures are (finally) dropping to seasonal averages, which for me is way too cold already. Although I eat raw foods most of the time (I can have smoothiebowls for dinner days in a row and never get bored), I’m definitely not strict about it. I do love cooked starches like potatoes, rice and root vegetables on my plate as well, especially on colder days. Personally I don’t eat legumes too often because of my digestive issues, but when cooked right legumes like lentils can be a wonderful source of nutrients. By soaking dried lentils first, rinsing them thoroughly and by cooking it long and slow, digestive issues can be prevented. So I went ahead and gave this Turkish family recipe of the classic ‘lentil-vermicelli soup’ a serious twist and came up with something different, a lentil stew with starchy veggies that still has mum’s signature: full of flavor, comforting, soft, filling and warming. Perfect.

Happy Earth Kitchen ©

Recipe
Serves: 2
Allergens: dairy-free / gluten-free / soy-free / no added oils
Diet: Fits within a Whole Food Plant Based diet (Starch Solution, Forks over Knives etc.)

Ingredients

1 cup dried green lentils
1 carrot diced
1 onion diced
1 stalk celery chopped
1 big or 2 small potatoes diced
1 tbsp tomato puree
1 tbsp Turkish sweet salça*
1 tsp dried mint
1 tsp masala
1 liter vegetable broth or water 

* Salça is a Turkish sun dried red pepper paste, made from sweet peppers or spicy peppers.  A jar of ‘biber salçasi’ can be found at any Turkish market, just be aware that there is a sweet and spicy version. If salça is not available to you, you can use paprika powder instead.

Method:

Step 1
Soak lentils overnight in a bowl of warm water with a couple of tablespoons vinegar. Soaking lentils is not necessary, but this step will help break down indigestible starches and thus will make the dish more kind to your stomach.

Step 2
– Stew onion, carrots and celery in a bit of water until the onion turns translucent and the water has evaporated.
– Add the paprika paste and the tomato puree, add the spices, stir.
– Give the lentils a good rinse and add them to the pan.
– Stir for 1 or 2 minutes, until everything is mixed well.
– Add 1 liter vegetable broth or 1 liter hot water to the pan.
– Bring it to a boil.
– Simmer, add potatoes and let cook slowly for 1 hour with lid on.
– Turn of heat (season with salt and pepper if desired) and let it rest for 30 minutes before serving it.

This dish will taste even better the day after, so making a bigger batch will not only save you time the next day, but will also extra give that little extra on the taste buds.

With Love from The Happy Earth Kitchen                     

Happy Earth Kitchen ©

Digestive Anti Bloat Smoothie

Fully Raw, Happy Earth Kitchen, Juices & Smoothies

Happy Earth Kitchen ©

Start your day with a habit that boosts digestion & beats bloat

In order to prevent bad digestion and to promote the absorption of nutrients, we should take plenty of time to chew our foods. But sometimes we are in a hurry, are impatient or just a bit lazy. At those moments we can help nature a little by mechanically breaking down food with the use of a blender. Blending makes the absorption of foods easier and (as opposed to cooking) maintains living enzymes, which are essential to digestion and cellular health. Add picking and combining foods that have the most positive impact on your gut and and you’re just one step away from boosting metabolism, working toward less bloat, and having a flat(ter) belly.

Raw fruits and vegetables are packed with fiber, micronutrients and living enzymes, so you can’t really go wrong with a smoothie. However, there are some important details to know and some key ingredients to consider. In the end it’s all about single-mindedly creating the ultimate elixer. Let me share my bloat beating, digestion promoting formula with you!

Digestive enzymes + Lauric Acid + Prebiotic food = Digestive Anti Bloat Elixer

  1. Digestive enzymes to break down food
    Pineapple, Papaya & Mango
    Papaya, Pineapple and Mango contain digestive enzymes. Moreover papaya has a strong capacity to destroy intestinal worms (eeks!), especially the seeds, so do include a bit of the seeds in your smoothie.
  1. Lauric Acid to kill parasites
    Young coconut meat
    Young coconut meat has a jelly-like texture and is the most nutritious form of coconut. In the Netherlands it is sold frozen at Asian supermarkets. Young coconut meat feeds the good bacteria in the intestines and helps regulating digestion. It contains Lauric Acid, which our body converts into Monolaurin (coconut being the richest source after breast milk). Monolaurin kills disease causing bacteria, virus and fungi and intestinal parasites. If getting hold of young coconut meat is difficult, go for coconut water instead.
  1. Prebiotic properties to grow good bacteria
    Bananas & Mango
    For proper bowel function (whether it’s constipation or diarrhea) bananas and mangoes are an excellent choice because of their high content of fiber and electrolytes. Furthermore, bananas & mangoes have prebiotic properties, which help the growth of good bacteria in the guts. Makes sure the bananas are ripe, for they will digest easier, contain higher levels of anti oxidants and as they’re fully ripened will produce TNF, a substance that has anti-cancer qualities.
  1. Avoid
    Knowing what you should eat is as important as knowing what you should avoid. To be blunt we could say that a super healthy habit makes little sense if you’re living on junk the rest of the day. Anyone who cares for their health or experiences digestive problems like constipation, diarrhea, bloat, gas or cramps should pay attention to proper food combining and avoid (or at least drastically reduce their intake of) soy, dairy, gluten, alcohol, fatty foods like oil and meat, caffeine, soft drinks, refined sugar and artificial sweeteners.

Watch video/and or get recipe below.

Recipe
Serves: 1 big or 2 smaller portions
Diet: raw vegan

Ingredients
2 Bananas
1 cup pineapple (preferably fresh, but frozen is fine too)
½ a mango (preferably fresh, but frozen is fine too)
½ a Papaya
1 cup of young coconut meat or coconut water

Method:
You can just put all the ingredients in the blender and mix until smooth, or you can make the layered version as shown in the video.

  • Layer 1: 1 banana, 1 cup pineapple, 1 cup young coconut flesh (along with the fluid).
  • Blend until smooth and pour halfway up the glass.
  • Layer 2: 1 banana, ½ a mango, ½ a papaya, bit of water if needed.
  • Blend until smooth and top up the glass.

Note: If you’re suffering from Fructose Intolerance I believe you can still benefit from this elixir. I suggest to just leave the mango out, since it’s on the high FODMAP list.

Recommendation: If you want to learn more about digestive health I recommend the book Gutbliss, an insightful, practical and easy to read roadmap to good gastrointestinal health by integrative gastroenterologist Dr. Robynne Chutkan.

With Love from The Happy Earth Kitchen

Happy Earth Kitchen ©

Chocolate Covered Pumpkin Spice Balls

Desserts & Snacks, Happy Earth Kitchen

Happy Earth Kitchen ©

Seasonal eating part II

Dutch schools are on their autumn break this week. It’s the week of stores showing the first signs of Christmas and the time of pumpkin spiced Dutch specialties like ‘speculaas’ and ‘kruidnoten’, very popular throughout the Sinterklaas season. Which season..? Well three weeks prior to Christmas, we commemorate the death of Saint Nicholas, you know the historical person behind Santa Claus. But because kids are made believe he’s real and alive, we tell them that we celebrate his birthday instead. Either way, it is an exciting time for both kids and adults filled with presents and very yummy season-appropriate treats, but unfortunately most of those treats are highly processed and have low to no nutritional value.

So with the current Autumn break, the approaching Sinterklaas season and with Halloween in less then 2 weeks, I wanted to create a season appropriate guilt-free treat you and your kids can indulge in. My Chocolate covered Pumpkin Spice Bliss Balls have that seasonal taste, are fun to make (engage your kids, they’ll love it) and are a nutritious source of energy.

Recipe

Serves: makes about 10 balls
Allergens/diet: refined sugar free, no added oils, dairy-free, vegan // contains gluten & nuts

Ingredients

Happy Earth Kitchen ©

Ingredients for step 1
¼ small size pumpkin cut into cubes
1 tbsp of water
1 tbsp Pumkin Spice (Speculaaskruiden)
Ingredients for step 2
½ cup dried mulberries
¾ – 1 cup rolled oats
1 tbsp natural nut butter
Orange zest
Vanilla
Pinch of salt
Optional: a teaspoon of curcuma to boost color.
Ingredients for step 3
High quality vegan dark chocolate

Method:

Step 1
– Preheat oven at 180C (350F).
– Cut pumpkin into cubes and place in an oven dish.
– Mix 1 tbsp of water with pumpkin spice and pour over pumpkin.
– Roast pumpkin for 1:15 min until soft and caramelized.
– Let cool down before proceeding.
Tip: You can prepare the roasted pumpkin ahead of time, it can be kept in the fridge safely for 3 days.

 Step 2
– Place oatmeal in food processor and pulse into a fine meal.
– Add roasted pumpkin (about 1 cup after roasting) and all the other ingredients listed in step 2 in food processor.
– Process until a dough-like ball forms. If the dough is too hard or too soft, you can always add a bit of water or some extra oatmeal.
– Take the dough out and roll into walnut sized balls.

Happy Earth Kitchen ©
Step 3
– Melt chocolate au bain marie.
– Place balls on a plate or tray with baking sheet and drizzle with melted chocolate and/or cover completely.
– Pop them in the fridge for a couple of hours for the chocolate to harden and the dough to set.

If you don’t want to get into the hassle of melting chocolate you can also roll the balls in finely chopped almonds, but trust me, the chocolate really makes the difference here and will be worth the hassle.

With Love from The Happy Earth Kitchen

Happy Earth Kitchen ©

Mexican Stuffed Sweet Potato

Cooked Meals, Workout & Recovery

Seasonal eating part I

Happy Earth Kitchen ©

Although I am always cold and Summer is the only time I actually feel physically comfortable, Autumn is still my favorite season. Autumn is that time of nature’s warm colors, cozy and fuzzy clothes and soul-warming dishes. It’s the time of longer nights, candlelight and approaching holiday season. Autumn to me evokes feelings of melancholy and nostalgia. It is that time of wanting to spend more time my the kitchen and at my favorite coffee shop. The advent of autumn means feasting on beautiful deep colored fruits like persimmons and pomegranates, the childish joy of collecting and roasting chestnuts, trying all different kinds of mushrooms and creating family meals with starchy veggies like yams and squashes.

I am kind of excited to create recipes with all of these ingredients over the next few weeks and to share them with you. My first recipe of the season is a Mexican stuffed, baked sweet potato. I guess it’s more of a ‘Summer into Fall’ recipe, since the main ingredient is sweet potato and it’s a very comforting meal, but it still has that sunny look and Latin kick to it. It is, as always, a whole, plant based, gluten-free meal made from scratch with no added oils. It’s nutrient dense, heart-healthy, easy to prepare and with its carb to protein ratio and anti-inflammatory properties, it also serve as an excellent meal to replenish your body after a day of hard physical exertion or strenuous workout.

Watch the instruction video & subscribe to my YouTube channel for more cooking videos. The intro (first 56 sec.) is in Dutch. Skip if you want to get to the instruction part directly.

Recipe

Serves: 2 persons
Allergens/diet: gluten-free, nut-free, oil-free, dairy-free, vegan

Ingredients

Sweet potatoes and stuffing
– 2 sweet potatoes
– 200 grams canned black beans Rinsed
1 onion Diced
– 2 cloves garlic Chopped
– 1 or 2 green peppers use Jalapeno for hot, Green Chili for medium, Green Bell Pepper for Sweet
– 1 tsp cumin
– 1 tsp dried coriander
– Red chili powder to taste
– salt & pepper if desired
– 300 ml water or vegetable broth

Topping
Basically this part is up to you, here are the ingredients I used, but please feel free to adjust according to your own liking.
– coriander (cilantro)
– avocado
– cherry tomatoes
– lime
– lime cress & garlic cress

Guacamole
– 1 avocado
– juice of ½ a lime
– fresh coriander (cilantro)
– red chili pepper
– salt & pepper if desired

Method

Baked potatoes
– Pierce potatoes al over with a fork.
– Place a baking sheet over the bottom of the oven for any syrup that may drip from the potatoes.
– Place potatoes in the oven at 200C (400F), directly on the rack and bake till tender, about 40 min. (You don’t need to preheat the oven. The baking time may vary depending on the size of the potatoes, so check with a fork to see if they’re completely soft inside).
– Turn off the oven and let the potatoes rest for a minimum of 10 minutes for optimal taste and softening.

Stuffing
– Meanwhile stew, onion, garlic, green pepper and the spices with 300 ml water or vegetable broth for 20 min on low heat.
– After 20 min the onions will be softened and most of the water will be evaporated. Add black beans and stew for another 10/15 minutes, until the water is completely evaporated.

Guacamole
Mix guacamole ingredients in a bowl.

Serve
– Cut potatoes open
– Load on the bean stuffing, top with toppings and serve with guacamole on the side.

With Love from The Happy Earth Kitchen

Happy Earth Kitchen ©

3 Ingredient Green Juices

Fully Raw, Happy Earth Kitchen, Juices & Smoothies

Quick, Clean, Green.

Sometimes I want to make myself a quick and easy green juice, but then I start overthinking and complicating things. Especially when it’s the end of the week, I think about my empty fridge and about what the perfect combinations were again. I decide doing a hit and run to the grocery store, but then I feel too busy, too lazy or I have some other kind of excuse. And when I finally start juicing with leftover veggies, I always end up throwing some carrots or beets in, because they happen to lie around there anyway. And then I realize I was supposed to make myself a green juice, so I look up some recipes online while sipping on my orange/brownish creation, promising myself to remember this wonderful 7-ingredient recipe I just came across for the next time. And as you may guess, by the time next time arrives, I either have forgotten about the recipe, or I am out of ingredients and then the whole thing starts over again.

Long story short, because I can imagine I am not the only one suffering from green juice dementia or green juice laziness, I decided to come up with three recipes with only 3 (not too exotic) ingredients with the potential to become classics in my kitchen and maybe in yours too. I’m writing these down and pinning them on my fridge door. You can too of course or even print out the visual below. Helps with dementia 😉

Happy Earth Kitchen ©

Recipes

  1. Classic
    Apple
    Cucumber
    Spinach
  1. Fresh
    Pineapple
    Celery
    Mint
  1. Sweet
    Pear
    Kiwi
    Kale

If you don’t have a juicer, you can use a blender and make green smoothies instead. Just ad a cup of water to the recipe and you’re good to go!

With Love From The Happy Earth Kitchen.