November 15, 2014
This lovely recipe is now available on the Raw Desserts App, it is completely sugar free and coloured naturally with a little freshly squeezed beet juice.
October 1, 2014
What a crazy week! My new app launched over the weekend and I have an exam on Sunday – not the best timing – my poor brain feels so frazzled and dazzled – it doesn’t really know what to focus on. So, I’m going to keep this short and sweet today, mostly because I have piles of notes all over my desk, bed, floor, room… everywhere I tell ya. Still, a little break is a good think. Thing. Good thing. See what’s happening?! I’m short circuiting! Even left my pen in the fridge yesterday. Who does that.
So, speaking of my poor brain being frazzled, I thought a nice post to share today would be this super great basic – Chocolate Chia Pudding – which I have for breakfast sometimes in the weekends. It is packed full of brain healthy omega 3 fatty acids, so it is rather special at fuelling you up on days when you need to engage brain. The chia seeds are also a great source of the minerals calcium and phosphorus, for strong and flexible bones. Plus, study feels so much easier when you get chocolate pudding for breakfast.
Chocolate Chia Pudding
1 whole young coconut
½ cup chia seeds
1 tablespoon cacao powder
1 tablespoon 100% pure maple syrup
2 tablespoons coconut butter, liquified
½ teaspoon cinnamon
Pinch of coarse sea salt
- Cut open the coconut and pour the water into a blender.
- Scoop the flesh out, and pop it in a sieve. Take a little time to remove any of the husk still attached.
- Add to the blender and whizz till creamy, pour the resulting milk into a bowl.
- Add the rest of the ingredients and whisk together, then leave it to thicken for 5 to 15 minutes.
- If you like a warm breakfast for comfort, you can heat this on low over the stove top.
- Serve with a dollop of berry jam and a sprinkling of nuts.
How easy is that!
Ok back to the books, and thank you all for the amazing feedback on the app so far – it’s rocking my world, so happy people are enjoying it.
September 26, 2014
Coffee wrecks havoc with your adrenals, and, being an irritant, it is not very gentle on the digestive system – it can cause abdominal pain and an upset tummy.
Oh but it tastes so good, right? I have a recipe today for a caffeine free alternative – Dandelion Latte, made from roast dandelion herbal ‘coffee’, nut milk and coconut oil.
I like to buy a brand of dandelion coffee called Bonvit – it’s a blend of roasted dandelion and chicory. The perks are, it doesn’t perk you up, and actually gives your liver a bit of love. It can taste a bit bitter, but if you follow this recipe, you will get a super frothy, creamy delicious latte – almost (if not better than) the real thing.
1 teaspoon Bovit dandelion coffee
3/4 cup boiling water
1/4 cup plant-based milk (hemp is extra creamy)
1 teaspoon coconut oil
1/4 teaspoon coconut sugar or a pinch of stevia
Add the dandelion coffee to hot water and stir till it dissolves, then add everything else to the blender for 30 seconds.
You will get a hot, frothy latte. Dust with cinnamon and enjoy.
September 20, 2014
I’ve been posting on this blog for about two years now, and just realised that I have actually never shared my personal story with you. I tried to write it over a year ago, but when I read it back, it sounded like a giant bunch of unglamorous dribble, so I trashed it thinking no one would be interested and that was the end of it. Except now, I’m about to launch my second app, and more than ever it seems fitting to share a bit about myself, to give context as to why I do what I do, and what fuels the passion I have for it. Maybe it’s time to have another crack at that story…
Just as I was thinking this, I got side tracked as I normally do, and picked up my angel cards to ask a study related question. I only drew one card, and it was ‘Come Out of the Closet.’ At first I went pffft. You angels are on something. What relevance does that have?! Until I remembered my previous train of thought. The message, of course, was to share. So, if you feel like grabbing a hot chai and getting comfy, I’ll do just that.
Where it all started
Three years ago, I left a decade long career in Advertising. It was simultaneously the most exciting yet scary thing I have ever done. I left partly because I needed to heal, and partly because it was time to fulfil my soul purpose.
Time to heal
About six years ago, I was diagnosed with a chronic autoimmune disorder – Inflammatory Bowel Disease. In the medical tradition, there is no reason, rhyme or cure, and harsh steroids and/or surgeries are the standard form of treatment. Since that diagnosis, I have been on a winding path to healing – as naturally as I can. Inflammatory Bowel is one of those nasty’s where you look fine from the outside, yet you can literally be burning up on the inside. Stress greatly exacerbates the condition, and many foods are incredibly problematic – wheat, gluten, dairy, oily foods and refined sugars.
Towards the last few years of my advertising career, I wasn’t able to manage the stress as well as I used to, especially when we were really put under the pump with tight deadlines, working weekends or till early hours of the morning. I ended up with Adrenal Fatigue, and yet another nasty autoimmune condition – Interstitial Cystitis – a chronic and very painful inflammation of the bladder and urethra – something I would not wish on anyone, that’s for sure (this is an entirely different thing to cystitis/a bladder infection by the way).
The things I tried
In my quest to heal, I tried all kinds of alternative therapies, and worked with many, many healers. I tried Chinese Herbalism, Western Herbalism, Acupuncture, Energy Healing, Rife Therapy, Intravenous Vitamin C and Mineral Therapy, Bowen Therapy, and some truly radical diets (to name but a few). Of course, I also went from specialist to specialst (and had many an invasive procedure), trying to find missing bits of the puzzle, and truthfully, collecting nothing but frustration and bills.
I experimented with raw foods, and a very simple diet specifically for healing the gut, and found some improvement. However, it still wasn’t enough to make me feel comfortable. I somehow found myself at a fasting clinic – a pure water fasting clinic – and went on to do a therapeutic 17 day long medically supervised fast, in the hope of allowing all the compromised parts of my body to repair and renew themselves. It was so incredibly hard, as I don’t think I had the right mental headspace for it at that time.
I had so many low vibrating thoughts and feelings rattling through my mind, and felt really down and out that I was here fading away while my friends were out enjoying carefree Sunday Sessions at cool new bars in Sydney. On top of this, sadly, the moment I started eating again, my symptoms returned, and I was heart broken.
The things I learned
It did teach me one thing however, and in the end, I realised that if I truly wanted to heal, I had to remove the biggest stressor in my life – work. Time for a career change that would both fulfil my true purpose and enable me space to really heal. Thankfully, this had been in the wiring for me for a long time, and I had already enrolled to study Natural Medicine a couple of years prior (I just hadn’t completed any papers – thanks to too many late nights and weekends spent in the office). Time to actually roll my sleeves up and go back to study. Yes, yes, yes went my heart.
The big career change
When I walked away from my career, I felt a huge weight lift from my shoulders. I travelled to Bali on an impulse for six weeks, to complete intensive Raw Foods training, which further strengthened the love affair I’d had with these beautiful natural foods over the last few years. I became a certified Holistic Health and Wellness Coach, and completed an amazing Shamanic Herbal Apprenticeship, learning to tune into and work with the energies of these incredibly generous and healing plants. Today, I am studying full time, still working toward my degree in Natural Medicine. I love, love, love every second of it.
Where I’ve ended up
During this time of re training, I’ve managed to tame that pretty wild inflammation in my body (most of the time – with autoimmune conditions, it’s about management). I’ve learnt to seek balance, and to nourish my body with pure, unadulterated foods. I’ve also cultivated a strong meditation and self love practice. And, I’ve also had to work my way to accepting that this is my chosen path now, and even though its been a hard road and incredibly humbling being a student again with no money, it is ultimately serving me (and later, others) at such a higher level.
Throughout this process, I have been sharing my learnings and discoveries on my blog here at Ascension Kitchen. Going back to basics (and nature!), and stepping out of the fast lane have taught me much, and this is the message I now hope to share with others. When I think of what’s to come, I get excited now, not panicky like I did working in the corporate world (can you relate to this – Holy Sh*t!! How the hell am I going to meet that deadline! Looks like it will be an all nighter! ).
Food, herbs and thoughts as medicine are my passion, and I’m really enjoying and looking forward to refining my new craft of Herbalism. I adore the magic and alchemy it brings to the table, literally.
I also have a lot to be grateful for – mostly – you. I’ve been extracted from an environment where it’s very competitive and linear, and repositioned in this beautiful space where there is community and connection with like minded souls. I’ve also had the privilege of coaching some amazing people on their own path to health and wellness.
Thank you for reading this, I feel happy now that you can understand better what I’m about and why I do what I do and create what I create.
Love, peace, health & beyond,
24 Responses to “My Story”
September 17, 2014
Oh so I am hopeless at keeping secrets. The Raw Desserts App I have been working on – for the last eight months – has finally been submitted to Apple! Whoop whoop! In the meantime, I’ve already been preparing new recipes to add as updates after the initial launch. This is one of them. I totally had to share it because it was so yummy I kept sneaking back to the fridge for more. It literally melts in your mouth. Hope you enjoy x
Raw Maqui Berry & White Chocolate Fudge
This white chocolate and maqui berry fudge is packed with antioxidants – in fact, maqui is said to have three times the antioxidants than our friend açai berry. Like other black, red and purple coloured fruits (açai berry, black grapes, black currants, blackberries, black plums, black cherries, pomegranates), the maqui berry contains a pigment called anthocyanins – which contribute to its antioxidant capacity, and are also powerfully anti-inflammatory. Anthocyanins may enhance heart health and protect against cancer. The berries also help strengthen the immune system, protect against free radical damage, and are anti aging. The little berries come from an evergreen tree in Chile and Argentina, they have an incredible flavour, and a little goes a long way. Cut into small squares and serve with a cup of yerba mate herbal tea – a South American favourite!
1½ cups cashews
½ cup coconut milk
1 cup cacao butter, liquefied
½ cup 100% pure maple syrup
½ cup coconut butter, liquefied
2 heaped tablespoons maqui berry powder
2 teaspoons vanilla essence
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1 good pinch of fine Himalayan rock salt
1. Blend the cashews in a high speed blender till they powder into a fine flour.
2. If your cacao butter and/or coconut butter are firm, set them in a glass jug and rest over a bath of hot water to liquefy.
3. Add all ingredients to a food processor, and whiz till the mixture is very smooth.
4. Pour into an 8 inch square cake tin lined with baking paper, and pop in the fridge or freezer to set. Remove from the fridge or freezer while it is still a little bit soft, so that you can easily cut into equal sized squares.
Make sure you sign up at rawdessertsapp.com to be the first to know when the app goes live! You’ll also get the heads up every time a new recipe is added.