I've been in the process of tweaking my food lifestyle for nearly two and a half years. A few months in I decided to cut out dairy and try the vegan thing. There have been countless times when I've thought to myself, "What in the world can I eat?!", which I'm sure many people can relate to. Sometimes, you just hit a wall! But, when something is off limits, it forces you to find a new way. So, I found a new way to make old favourites! And using plant-based ingredients means that the food is better for your body, so you don't have to compromise on your health.
When changing your food lifestyle go by the principles of adding and swapping. Try adding a green smoothie to your daily diet. The research shows that even if you change nothing else, you'll experience improved health. Or, try swapping dairy out of your diet with the plant-based dairy alternatives below.
1 cup raw almonds (substitute: cashews, sesame or sunflower seeds, oats)
4 cups filtered water, to blend
Filtered water, to soak
Optional: 1-2 dates; 1 tsp coconut sugar/nectar; 1 tsp vanilla extract; 1 tsp cacao powder; pinch of sea salt
Soak the raw almonds (substitute with any nuts, seeds, or grains) overnight in filtered water. Drain and rinse before adding them to a blender or a food processor with 4 cups of filtered water. Process for 1-2 minutes. Squeeze the liquid mixture through a nut milk bag or strain using a fine mesh strainer into a large bowl. The milk will separate from the pulp, or almond meal, which can be stored in a sealed bag or container in the freezer. If desired, add the milk to the blender and process again with the optional ingredients of your choice. Pour the milk into a sealed bottle or container and keep in the fridge for up to 5 days.
coco-nana nice cream
4 bananas, peeled and frozen
1 cup almond milk, add 1/2 cup more if desired
1/2 cup dried shredded coconut (substitute: young coconut meat)
1 Tbs maca powder*
1 Tbs almond butter
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
Place all the ingredients into a blender or a food processor. Blend until smooth and creamy (you may need to stop and stir the mixture once or twice). Pour into bowls and serve!
*Maca is an energising superfood of the Incas and is packed full of vitamins, minerals, enzymes, all nine essential amino acids and nearly 60 phytochemicals.