Tag Archive | Ginger

Papaya Spice Muffins

This delicious recipe has been shared by Barbara Prud’homme, Health Coach.  More of her fantastic recipes can be found here at Healthy Peas, Happy Pod.

Enjoy!

Early this morning, I peeked into my fridge and spotted a big tupperware box full of delicious, chopped up papaya. I didn’t really feel  like having it fresh, so I started to think about what I could make with it.  Slice it up and use it over a toasted English muffin? Tempting, but no. Chop it up into oatmeal? Could be yummy, but that wasn’t just what I wanted. Then it hit me – I had also been craving pumpkin  muffins for awhile, so why not try out some new, healthy, and exciting…Papaya Spice Muffins!! 🙂

Before I tell you all about my recipe, here are some reasons why papaya is amazing.   Not only  do they have a luscious taste, they  are rich sources of antioxidant nutrients, B vitamins, potassium, magnesium, and fiber. These nutrients promote cardiovascular system health and also provide protection against colon cancer. In addition, papaya contains the digestive enzyme, papain, which is used to treat sports injuries, other causes of trauma, and allergies!  Awesome!

 

Ok, so to make my amazing Papaya Spice Muffins, I adapted a classic pumpkin muffin recipe. Obviously, I subbed in papaya for pumpkin, but I also upped the ginger content – ginger and papaya are good friends in the kitchen 🙂 Next time, I may try adding some raisins, toasted almonds, or oats into the batter. I also thought that these could be super yummy with coconut milk instead of almond milk. Then again, these turned out so awesome this time that I may just repeat the recipe as is! If you want to try to make some, here’s what you need…

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • ¾ cups whole wheat flour2 tsp (10 mL) baking powder
  • ½ tsp each; cinnamon, nutmeg, salt
  • ¾  tsp ginger
  • 2 eggs
  • ½  cup coconut sugar
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • ½ cup unsweetened almond milk
  • 1 tsp  pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup puréed papaya

 Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 375°F and grease 12 muffin cups (or line with paper liners).
  1. In a medium bowl, stir together flour, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger and salt.
  1. In a large bowl, whisk eggs, brown sugar blend, oil, milk and vanilla. Add papaya purée and blend. Add dry ingredients and stir until well combined.
  2. Spoon batter into prepared muffin cups. Bake for about 25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in centre comes out clean.

And voila, you will have 12, perfectly fluffy and delicious Papaya Spice Muffins! I thoroughly enjoyed mine – and it totally reminded me how much fun it is to experiment in the kitchen and listen to what your intuition tells you about trying new flavour combinations. Have you made anything fun lately?  Tell me all about i!

Tasty Tuesdays – Mango Chicken

Chicken is fantastically versatile in the kitchen and can be prepared in a multitude of ways.  This recipe is very delicious and goes well with any type of rice.

Ingredients

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 1 tbsp fresh ginger
  • 1 red onion
  • 1 red pepper
  • 2 chicken breasts
  • 1/2 tsp dried thyme
  • 1/2 tsp curry powder
  • 1/2 tsp chili powder
  • 1 dried chili
  • salt & pepper
  • 1 mango
  • 1/2 lemon
  • 1/2 cup vegetable broth
  • 1/4 cup fresh cilantro

Directions

  • Heat the olive oil in a large pan, and then add the garlic, ginger and chopped red onion.  Saute for 5 minutes or until onions are tender.
  • Thinly slice the red pepper and add to the pan.  Saute for 2-3 minutes.
  • Cut chicken into thin strips and add to the vegetables.
  • Add the thyme, curry, chili powder, dried chili, salt and pepper.  Make sure the spices are evenly distributed.
  • Cook for 3 minutes on medium heat.
  • Add the thinly sliced mango, fresh lemon juice and vegetable broth.  Bring to a simmer and cook for 8 minutes.
  • Remove the pan from the heat and add the fresh cilantro, mixing thoroughly.
  • Pair with your favourite rice and garnish with cilantro.

Interesting Facts

Chicken is one of the most commonly consumed poultries in the world and its popularity continues to rise (Padilla, 2010).  Chickens were first domesticated in southern Asia eight thousand years ago and are now one of the world’s primary animal protein sources (Wirén, 2011).  They are also one of the least expensive livestock to rear because of their small size and short generation length (Kearney, 2010).  Chicken is an excellent alternative to other animal meats because of its low fat and high protein content which makes it extremely lean.  As well, chicken is a great source of calcium, iron, phosphorus, potassium and vitamins A, B and D (USDA, 2012).  More specifically, chicken contains niacin, which is vitamin B3 and essential in the human diet.  In fact, deficiencies of this micronutrient have been linked to DNA damage and cognitive decline (Ames, 2001).  An interesting study by Morris et al. (2004) assessed the cognitive functioning of people aged 65 years and older for six years. It was found that including adequate levels of niacin in your diet may protect against both age related cognitive decline and Alzheimer’s disease.  In addition to chicken containing valuable amounts of niacin, it also has high levels of selenium.  This trace mineral is essential for proper cellular function.  Selenium is involved in DNA repair and synthesis, and plays an important role in various metabolic pathways (Hatfield et al., 2011).  Overall, chicken is an excellent lean protein full of beneficial nutrients and could also have less of an impact on the environment.  It is well documented that chickens produce much less methane and carbon dioxide than ruminant animals such as beef and lamb (McMichael et al., 2007).  Since agriculture is such a major contributor to the global greenhouse gas emissions (Friel et al., 2009), making more informed choices on where to procure your protein can only be beneficial.

Tasty Tuesdays – Iced Green Tea

I think Green tea is delicious and I prepare this recipe daily.  It’s wonderfully refreshing first thing in the morning and has become a staple in my refrigerator.

Ingredients

  • 2 green tea bags
  • lemon or lime slices

Optional

  • fresh ginger slices
  • fresh mint leaves

Directions

  • Steep green tea in a teapot until it is room temperature, about 4 hours.  If you want to add ginger or mint to this recipe, add the fresh slices or mint leaves to the teapot while the green tea is steeping.
  • Remove the tea bags, ginger slices and/or mint leaves.  Pour tea into a glass jar.
  • Add lemon or lime slices.
  • This should last a couple of days in the refrigerator.

Interesting Facts 

Green tea has been a fundamental beverage in China for thousands of years and has been studied intensely because of its many health benefits.  In fact, there is such an extensive amount of literature on this topic I will only highlight a few of the most interesting points here. There are numerous studies worldwide investigating the use of green tea in combination with anticancer drugs.  In Japan, green tea is even officially declared a cancer preventive beverage (Suganuma et al., 2010). Catechins are the main active compound in green tea with many derivatives, one of the most highly studied being epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG).  This powerful polyphenol has been shown to halt abnormal cell production by preventing messages being sent to growth factors responsible for excessive cellular growth (Siddiqui et al., 2009).  Other studies with EGCG have demonstrated an ability to inhibit blood vessel growth to tumors, which ultimately slow their proliferation (Lamy et al., 2002).  Green tea is not only an effective chemopreventive agent (Mukhtar, et al., 1999) but animal studies have also shown it to have considerable cardiovascular protective properties (Kuriyama et al., 2006), including the ability to significantly lower total and LDL cholesterol levels (Kim et al., 2011).  Given that heart disease and cancer are leading causes of death (WHO, 2011) it would be wise to include green tea in your daily beverage consumption.  Just try it, it’s delicious!


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