Happy New Year!

 

I am so beyond excited for all that 2017 holds! I have also been busy in the kitchen creating new recipes and trying new things, eating a giant salad every single day, and cooking up healing meals for my family, as well as the occasional treat. I’ve even busted out our old juicer to make celery juice every morning-it is supposed to be magic for reducing and eliminating pain in muscles and joints…I’ll keep you posted! As we know, another key to reducing inflammation is keeping the fake and refined sugar out of our diets. If I do use sugar in our home for healthy treats, I stick to real, organic maple sugar, and raw, local honey, and I don’t bake every day! Our focus for sustaining good health and autoimmune healing is on eating more vegetables than a vegetarian, limited dairy for most of us and none for others of us, good fats like coconut oil, avocado (avocado gluten free toast- oh my land!) olive oil, ghee and organic cultured, salted butter (my fave!) humanely raised, grass-fed meat, sustainable fish, and in-season fruits. We have grains in the form of gluten free or paleo bread (no more than one serving a day- as we need those other “spaces for eating” to be filled up with nutrient dense foods) white rice or black rice, and we also utilize lentils and beans. Not paleo, but we have been able to re-incorporate them to excellent effect. YAY FIBER!!

 

There is much to be said for the improvement of health and eating with the seasons. Our pineal gland is a small pinecone shaped gland deep in the middle of the brain, and it’s function is to produce melatonin, regulate the HPA axis, and it is in charge of keeping our circadian rhythms in check. It knows what season it is, and it likes when we feed our body accordingly. In the winter, it is citrus season. We need that vitamin c to stay well, particularly in these months of so much time indoors!  We also have root vegetables from the fall harvest in our root cellar (well, some of us don’t have a cellar any longer…) and in the winter when it is cold and dark, the root vegetables serve to ground us, sustain our energy, and facilitate the extra sleep that we need to achieve during these months, according to our masterful circadian rhythms.

 

On New Year’s Eve, I created this recipe for gluten-free orange/carrot spice muffins, and we have been loving them! My husband says they would be extra great with the addition of walnuts or even a fruit such as unsweetened dried cranberries, blueberries, or even chopped apple. I used my base muffin recipe that I created several years back, and I tweak it for each new recipe depending on what I’m doing. The inspiration for this recipe was all of the fruit and veggie pulp that we had leftover from juicing in our Breville juice fountain one morning; in this case it was the pulp of several oranges, carrots, and celery. If you don’t juice, I have the proportions of what you can use in the form of your choice of fruits/veggies listed in the recipe below…I would just shred them in the food processor, and them blend them up to a lovely smoosh! I’d use the peel and all-again, fiber in our diet is SO important. You can use the pulp of anything you are juicing with- just make sure to remove any seeds from the pulp. They won’t feel good on your teeth if you accidentally chomp into one stuck in a muffin! Since I had some celery going on, I really wanted to make sure I blended the pulp up very well in the food processor, so as to remove any stringiness.

 

 

MMMMMM!!!! It’s the smoosh from our juicing sessions!

This is the maple sugar we use. It is awesome. Bonus benefit of using maple sugar- it is a prebiotic, so it feeds the beneficial bacteria in the gut! Just don’t overdo…

I get my bulk organic spices, like this here pumpkin spice blend, from Frontier Co-op. You can find them right here Frontier Co-Op.

I love vanilla extract. I happen to have this one on hand.

Fresh ground ginger is lovely in recipes, and dried organic is convenient and works quite well.

Coconut oil, all day, every day.

Chia seeds in water…little heath bombs. FIBER.

Mix, mix…stir, stir….married young, it’s all a blur (bonus points if you can name that reference…..)

I get these fabulous muffin liners on amazon, right here. I like that they are legit and good for the earth, and am totally fine with my daughter licking every last crumb off of the wrapper…which she does!

TIME TO BUST OUT THE GRASS FED BUTTER, PEOPLE.

And the sweetest little Bonnie Blue Cornflower vintage Fire King plates and tea cups that you can get your hands on….

Make some espresso or tea…

They are so tender and moist!

Here we are!!!!

The Mint Pixie’s Juice Pulp Orange Carrot Spice Muffins

Gluten free

 

1 1/2 cups blend of celery, carrot, orange left over from juicing (or if you aren’t juicing, use the equivalent amount of fresh fruits and veggies, shredded, and then blended up in the food processor)

1 tablespoon Chia seed soaked in water for at least five minutes

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon baking powder

3 tablespoons coconut oil and 2 tablespoons butter melted in a saucepan, cooled (can also use ghee)

1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice

1/4 teaspoon ginger

1 teaspoon cinnamon

two eggs

1/2 teaspoon fine (not coarse) sea salt

1/2 cup almond milk (can use another nut milk, cow’s milk, or coconut milk instead)

1 1/2 cups GF flour (I used this-but other brands are awesome, too.)

1/2 cup granulated maple sugar

optional additions- 1/2 cup chopped walnuts or pecans. 1/2 cup unsweetened dried sour cherries or cranberries.

 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Pulverize your pulp (or shredded veggies and fruit) by blending it up on the pulse function of a food processor until it’s pretty smooth. I use a total of 1 1/2 cups of pulp, after blending.

Add pulp to a mixing bowl, along with soaked chia, melted butter and coconut oil, the maple sugar, two eggs and almond milk. Blend low-medium until combined. In a separate bowl, combine flour, baking soda, baking powder, pumpkin pie spice, ginger, cinnamon, and sea salt. Gradually incorporate dry ingredients into wet, mixing until thoroughly combined. You could also do all of this by hand, it is not necessary to use a stand or hand mixer for this recipe.

Fill lined muffin tins each 3/4 full.

Bake 25 to 28 minutes at 350°, muffins are done when toothpick inserted in center comes out clean, with a few crumbs. Tops will turn lightly golden. Makes 15-16 muffins.

 

Enjoy!

 

The Mint Pixie

 

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