Friendly Treats Baking

Tired of searching around town for a baked good that satisfies all of your allergies and food restrictions? Look no further! Friendly Treats Baking is here for you. They offer allergy friendly dry mixes and try to satisfy everyone’s needs.

They have everything from cupcakes to cookies to loafs. All products are gluten-free, vegan and free of refined sugars. Check them out today and satisfy your sweet tooth!

Oh! Order before January 11, 2013 and receive FREE shipping!

Go to www.friendlytreatsbaking.ca for a list of products and to place your order.

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Chocolate Coconut Fudge

coconut chocolate fudge

New Year’s Eve is tomorrow and this is a great recipe to give you enough energy to make it till midnight! It is a combination of just the right amount of chocolate and coconut to satisfy your chocolate tooth (it’s just like a sweet tooth 🙂 )

The chocolate and coconut combination will provide you loads of energy!

Coconut Oil – great for skin and hair health, maintaining cholesterol, immunity, digestion (helps with absorption), and metabolism. It has even been said to help with weight loss. (although I don’t the last point holds true if you eat the whole pan of fudge!) Coconut oil is antimicrobial and anti fungal. Most of the health properties are due to the content of lauric acid, capric acid, and caprylic acid.

Recipe:

2 1/2 cups baker’s semi-sweet chocolate chunks

3/4 cup cashew butter (can use any nut butter)

1/4 cup coconut oil

2 tbsp organic butter (can be omitted to make vegan)

1 tsp vanilla

1/4 cup almond milk

1/2 cup coconut sugar

1/4 cup real maple syrup

Directions:

  1. Combine cashew butter, vanilla, almond milk, coconut sugar, and maple syrup in a bowl.
  2. Over a double boiler melt the chocolate, butter, and coconut oil
  3. Add the chocolate mixture to the cashew butter mixture
  4. Pour fudge batter into a brownie pan lined with parchment paper
  5. Cool in the fridge for about 3 hours to set

Enjoy!

I hope you ring in the new year with a chocolate high 🙂

Wishing everyone a healthy and happy new year!

Organic vs. Conventional

Eating organic food, especially fruits and vegetables, has become increasingly popular in the past few years. Everyone tells you that organic food is better for you, but why?

Organic food is free of harmful chemicals that have adverse effects on the body. These chemicals can disrupt hormones, negatively impact metabolic pathway functioning and lead to cellular damage. Conventional crops are sprayed with different chemical pesticides and fertilizers to increase growth and reduce damage from insects. These chemicals stay on and even in the food after they are pick. This leads to us eating the chemicals which eventually negatively impact our health.

You might be thinking, I know chemicals in pesticides and fertilizers are harmful to the body, but organic food can be soo expensive! Organic food may be more expensive, but people argue that the nutrient value is greater than conventionally grown food. Now, I don’t know if this is true but I do know that any fruit and vegetable consumption is better than none. So if you cannot afford organic foods make sure to give your conventionally grown ones a good wash, you can reduce some of the chemicals. Another great idea is to buy organic for foods on the dirty dozen list. The dirty dozen is a list of the 12 most sprayed foods. These are the ones highest in chemicals. Spend a little more money to buy these organic and save on your other favourite fruits and vegetables. A third tip to lower chemical consumption is to consume more fruits and vegetables on the clean 15 list. These are the ones that you can safely buy non-organic. So try to eat chemical free but remember any fruit and vegetable consumption is better than none!

Check out this website to get a list of the dirty dozen and clean fifteen. http://www.ewg.org/foodnews/summary/

Take action and reduce your chemical consumption today!

Healthy Alternatives

Everyone today is talking about how you should avoid gluten, or refined sugar and even milk because they are unhealthy. This is absolutely correct, but they rarely suggest healthy alternatives and leave people in a frenzy! Today I am going to provide some healthy alternatives for some of the popular commercial products that are overused and hold very little benefits for our body.

Cow’s Milk: Where am I going to get my calcium from? This is a common question asked when people are told to take dairy out of their diet. Milk may contain calcium but it is not the only source or even the best source of calcium. Milk is actually very acidic to the body (we want to avoid being acidic) and instead of helping us build healthy bones it actually weakens our bones. The calcium in milk is poorly absorbed and does not have a huge beneficial effect making strong bones. Cow’s milk is also homogenized and contains hormones given to cows for growth, which are also detrimental to health. In the past few decades more people have announced that they are lactose intolerance. This is because the lactose contained in milk cannot be broken down due to the fact that humans lack the necessary enzyme. Lactase (the enzyme) decreases after about the age of 2, the point in time humans should stop consuming milk. Casein the protein in milk has also become a problem in the last little while, causing allergies to milk.

Alternatives: Try brown rice milk, hemp milk, coconut milk, or almond milk instead of cow’s milk. Also increase you consumption of green vegetables as well as nuts and seeds to ensure adequate consumption of calcium.

White Bread: Not only is white bread refined  and stripped of vitamins and minerals, it also contains gluten which has become a common allergen in the past decade or so. It is important that we make sure the food we consume has a high nutrient content and provides our body with the necessary amount of vitamins and minerals.

Alternative: You can have whole grain bread if you are not allergic to gluten or wheat, but I would suggest having bean bread or brown rice bread. Some great  brands include Queen Street Gluten Free Bread and Aidan’s Gluten Free Bread.

White Sugar & Brown Sugar: These sugars are highly refined and stripped of any nutrient value. Consumption of sugar can cause an insulin spike and our blood glucose levels to rise drastically. Constant consumption of sugar can send us on a rollercoaster ride with sugar highs and lows, leading to symptoms of hypoglycemia (fatigue, headache, irritability) and even sugar cravings.  Increase insulin levels can also lead to weight gain which not many people want. It is important to balance our blood sugar and prevent the spikes and crashes. Try adding fiber and protein to slow the break down of sugar or add a sprinkle of cinnamon to help balance glucose levels.

Alternative: Try using coconut sugar (low glycemic index, does not spike insulin), raw honey (nutrient dense and great for the immune system), pure maple syrup or even dates. These are all great choices that provide nutrients along with sweetness and prevent the scary insulin rollercoaster ride.

Hope you enjoy these tips and no longer freak out when you are told everything is bad for you 😉

 

Chocolate Chip Cookies

You can never have too many cookies, right? We might like to think this but there is such a thing as “big butt syndrome” induced by overindulgence in cookies 😉 Don’t worry, this recipe has protein along with B vitamins and is of course gluten-free! I would never give a recipe that was full of bad fat and refined sugar so you had to limit yourself to just 1 cookie, that would just be mean!

Hope you enjoy!

…Oh, for everyone who watches The Global Morning Show and follows the amazing Joy McCarthy of Joyous Health these are the cookies you are looking for. She showed them as part of her great gift ideas for the holidays.

Sorry I could not find a picture 😦 but I have linked you to Joy’s instagram photo of them. http://t.co/EjdHQuvl

** Don’t forget to check out www.friendlytreatsbaking.ca for more delicious allergy friendly baked goods!

Ingredients:

1 cup brown rice flour + 2 tablespoons

¼ cup quinoa flakes

1 ½ teaspoons of baking powder

Pinch of salt

1 tablespoon of chia seeds

4 tablespoons water

1/3 cup grape-seed oil (or melted butter)

1/3 cup maple syrup

Chocolate chips

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  2. Combine chia seeds and water in a bowl, let stand
  3. Combine dry ingredients, flour, quinoa flakes, salt and baking powder
  4. Add wet ingredients to the bowl with chia seeds and water
  5. Combine wet ingredients with the dry
  6. Add chocolate chips to batter
  7. Divide onto a baking sheet and bake cookies for 15-20 minutes or until lightly browned