Monthly Archives

March 2013

Brunch, recipes

Beet Love Pancakes: Vegan Sunday Brunch, Episode 38

Somewhat hilariously, I’ve noted that for the last three months (today now included), we’ve done pancakes for brunch at the end of the month, pretty much always on my insistence.  Is my subconscious eager to start a pancake trend?

On the plus side (well there really isn’t a downside), pancakes are wonderful templates for any sort of brunchy experimentation, so when Michael got his head set on the idea of incorporating beets into our brunch (a brunch beet debut, I might add), I took that idea and went to pancake town with it.

Except I wanted different colors of pancakes (pink and brown), and I wanted hearts.  Don’t ask why, I just woke up this morning feeling like this:

Sometimes you just need to be all chibi.

Beet Love Pancakes (Now in Two Colors!)
Serves 2


1 cup all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 1/4 cup non-dairy milk
1/2 cup cooked, mashed beets*
2 teaspoons sweetener (agave, sugar, etc)
2 teaspoons neutral oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 tablespoon cocoa powder
Coconut oil, for frying

*Boil whole beets with their skin on until fork-tender, 45 minutes or so depending on their size.  Rinse them in cold water and rub off the skin with your thumbs (this should be super easy), and mash ’em well.


1. In a large bowl, combine the flour, baking powder and salt.  In a separate smaller bowl, combine the milk, mashed beets, sweetener, oil, and vanilla, stirring until combined.  Add the wet ingredients to the dry and mix until just combined – don’t overmix.  Separate the batter into two bowls (you can reuse the liquid ingredient bowl, just give it a quick clean), and stir in the cocoa powder into one bowl.

2. In your happiest pancake pan, heat a little coconut oil over medium-low heat.  Pour into desired pancake shapes, and fry until golden on both sides (3-4 minutes per side).

Serve with fruit and maple syrup and all your favorite pancake toppings.  Bask in beet love.  Live happily ever after.

Regular circle pancakes are pretty groovy too.

Since you can use all kinds of fruit and veggie purees in pancakes and other dessert-y things, I knew beets would work well – especially because a little while ago there was that whole “chocolate beet cake” thing going around the interwebz.  Does anyone remember that?  That was a Pinterest hot topic for sure, and I still need to give it a go.  But pancakes are easier.

It was really fun to have a couple different flavors of pancake to bite into – the normal and happy pink ones, and the deep-colored cocoa ones, all topped with berry syrup and fresh banana slices.  Michael served his syrup in a shot glass because he’s classy like that, and had the foresight to prepare a hibiscus beverage and really get the most out of the pink-red-purple breakfast theme.

I can’t tell you any more details about the drink except that it has hibiscus in it, and Michael is silent on the matter, being passed out as he is since the hour is late.  That’s okay though – people have to work, I get it.  Oh, but not me – I get to enjoy a week of no school, which means I can be all rebellious and stay up until midnight reading and blogging.  Yeah, total badass, I know.

Oh, and just because I can’t contain my excitement – Sunday brunch won’t be a solo affair next week. 🙂  I can’t wait to catch up with you all now that I have some free time again … for a couple more days, anyway, until Michael shows up.  Take care!

food and product reviews, recipes, smoothies and juice

Oriya Organics: Review, and Banana-Peach Smoothie

Hey guys!

A while back, Oriya Organics sent me their protein powder and green powder to review, which made me giddy with glee for so many reasons, namely:

-I’ve been chugging smoothies every morning before school
-Depending on what we’re cooking in the classroom, I can’t always depend on balanced lunch meals
-I’ve been paying more attention to purchasing organic and gmo-free food
-The ingredient lists on these are beautiful.

So let me talk about their Superfood Protein Medley first, since I’m featuring it in a recipe today.  Not only does it blend a few protein powders that are allergen-free (brown rice, chia, hempseed), the chia seeds and brown rice protein are sprouted for maximum digestibility.  How cool is that?

In addition to those ingredients, this protein blend contains chlorella and spirulina, which are high-protein, super-nutritious sea plants.  Because of this, this protein powder has a slight green tinge, which is a-ok with me since I usually drink green smoothies anyway.

What I absolutely love about this protein powder is that the nutrition you get out of it stretches far beyond just protein – in one serving, you’re also getting chlorophyll, omega-3’s, and lots of vitamin A, C, E, K and iron, among others.  In this way, this powder is really more like a whole food as opposed to just isolated protein. And it definitely doesn’t skimp in the protein department, as each scoop contains 18 grams of the stuff.

I can also highly recommend their SuperGreen Medley powder, which is a blend of wheat and barley grass, chlorella and spirulina.  It’s nice because I’m really not a big fan of spirulina’s flavor, but when it’s in a mix like this it’s totally fine.  I like adding a spoonful of this to my morning smoothies – it tastes great in the following recipe if you don’t mind a vibrant, emerald green hue to your smoothie.

And did I mention that both of these powders are raw (in addition to being certified organic, certified gmo-free, vegan and gluten-free)?  Score!

Banana-Peach Smoothie
I like to balance the coldness of this beverage by using frozen peaches and fresh banana, but you can feel free to use all frozen fruit, or all fresh – just adjust the almond milk for the right consistency.

Serves 1

1 medium banana, peeled
Generous 1/2 cup sliced frozen peaches
1 cup almond milk, homemade or store-bought
1/2 scoop (2 tablespoons) Oriya Organics Protein Medley
1 tablespoon ground flaxseed (optional)
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract


Combine all ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth.  Fits perfectly in a 16-ounce mason jar to take on the go.

This smoothie has a pale green tinge from the protein powder that I find gorgeous, but if you’re really opposed to that you could mask the color with some blueberries.  I love the flavor combo of banana, peach and vanilla, to the extent that I’m excited to wake up in the morning just so I can eat this. 🙂

I’m a big fan of smoothies, but you can also blend the powders into a juice, or even straight-up water.  I don’t enjoy drinking protein powder mixed with water, but I bet it could be nice blended with some sweetened non-dairy milk.  I’ve also been playing around with the protein powder as a flour substitute in raw treats – hopefully I’ll have a recipe up for that soon.

So there it is, guys – I really have nothing but good things to say about Oriya Organics, and I urge you to check out their website for more details.  Their products are on the pricey side, but I do think it’s worth it for the quality of the ingredients used.

And for those of us who live in Canada, the raw online store Upaya Naturals (Toronto-based) does carry these products.  I can personally vouch for the awesomeness of Upaya, since I bought my juicer from them several years ago.

So there you have it!  Catch you folks later.