GARAM MASALA MULLED WINE

Arvinda's Garam Masala contains a lot of the spices you would find in a mulled wine, namely cloves, nutmeg and cinnamon. 

Mulled wine is the perfect warming festive drink to serve during the colder months, paired with appetizers or sweets. It sure would be lovely to sip this around a crackling fireplace in the midst of the festive season.

mulled_wine.jpg

GARAM MASALA MULLED WINE

Method of Preparation:

1) In a pot, add raw cane sugar, the juice of one orange and a splash of red wine. Mix together to combine and stir on medium heat. Add ARVINDA'S GARAM MASALA, cloves, star anise, cinnamon sticks and vanilla pod.

2) Mix and allow spices to become fragrant. Pour in rest of red wine. Gently simmer on medium low heat for 15-20 minutes. Stir in port just before serving and garnish with orange slices.

Ingredients:
750 ML bottle red wine (use a half decent red table wine, Merlot is good)
½ CUP raw cane sugar
2 large oranges
2 TSP. ARVINDA'S GARAM MASALA
2-3 cloves, star anise, cinnamon sticks, each from ARVINDA'S WHOLE SPICES
1 vanilla pod, slit in half
½ CUP port (optional)

Fireside Spicy Chai Mulled Apple Cider

Here’s a warming drink to have around the fireplace over the holidays, perfect for the whole family.

Many mulled apple cider recipes call for honey or brown sugar. This recipe omits the added sugar, as the natural sweetness from the oranges and apple cider is pleasant on its own.

DSC_0014.JPG

FIRESIDE SPICY CHAI MULLED APPLE CIDER

Method of Preparation:

1) In a large pot, bring apple cider to a gentle boil with remaining ingredients.

2) Strain into mugs and garnish with an orange slice and star anise. Serves 6-8.

Ingredients:
2 L apple cider
2 TSP. ARVINDA'S CHAI MASALA 
1 TSP. pure almond extract
6-8 orange slices
6-8 star anise, from ARVINDA'S WHOLE SPICES, to garnish

Saffron Scented Almond Chai Spiced Milk (Kesar Badam Doodh)

In India, dairy in the form of milk is widely consumed and is taken for protein and sustenance. I first tried a warm milk beverage scented with saffron and cardamom, containing ground almonds on a trip to Jaipur in Rajasthan. Served in a small clay vessel on cooler evening, the warm drink was delightful, filling and almost like a whole meal-in-one. It’s a perfect sustenance beverage, that’s dessert-like at the same time.

This is known as Kesar Badam Doodh ~ Saffron Scented Almond Chai Spiced Milk. It's quite rich and when I had it, was quite sweet as well. Options for this recipe is to omit the sugar, add a pinch of turmeric or use almond or cashew milk. 


SAFFRON SCENTED ALMOND CHAI SPICED MILK

Method of Preparation:

1) In a medium saucepan, bring milk to a boil with almond, ARVINDA'S CHAI MASALA, saffron strands. Sweeten with raw cane sugar, honey or jaggery. Serves 2.

Ingredients:
2 CUPS milk
¼ CUP ground almonds
1 TSP. ARVINDA'S CHAI MASALA
4-6 strands saffron
1 TBSP. jaggery or raw cane sugar or honey 

 

Detox: Turmeric Tonic Water

I find in the winter I sometimes forget to stay hydrated, as in the cold weather I find it harder to keep track of my thirst level. And without sufficient hydration we can feel worn out and lethargic. 

Overall we experience higher stress levels and feeling drained during the holiday season. This Turmeric Tonic is both cleansing and detoxifying and feels really great to drink after a night of over-indulging, something we're prone to this time of the year!

I don’t like to add any sweetener to this, but feel free to add agave or liquid honey to your preference.

DSC_0177.JPG

TURMERIC TONIC WATER

Method of Preparation:

1) In a large heatproof jug, brew herbal tea. Add the remaining ingredients with the exception of the garnish.

2) Serve warm with a garnish of blueberries or cherries.

OPTION: Chill in refrigerator and serve on a hot day.

Ingredients:
1.7 L water
3 herbal tea bags
1 INCH piece ginger, sliced
1/2 TSP. turmeric powder
1/2 TSP. ARVINDA'S CHAI MASALA
1/4 lemon, juiced
1/4 CUP blueberries or cherries, to garnish

Turmeric Kale Protein Smoothie (CHAI FLAVOURED!)

DSC_0165.JPG

The benefits of turmeric are endless–anti-inflammatory, reduces swelling, aids in digestion, purifies the blood, relieves a cough…I could keep going! But sometimes I have to remember there is more to life than just turmeric! Eating a rainbow of foods and flavours is a good approach to get a range of vitamins, minerals and health benefits from the foods we eat.

So with this recipe, Turmeric Kale Protein Smoothie it has it all! A rainbow of colours and flavours, everything from bananas to chai spices, cocoa nibs to coconut...and of course, turmeric! :) A whole meal-in-one, it's perfect for a post-workout recovery.

Here’s what the TURMERIC KALE PROTEIN SMOOTHIE contains:

  • avocado – a superfood and healthy fat, avocados contain antioxidants that protect against eye disease, lowers cholesterol and makes you feel satiated. (1/2 ripe avocado)
  • banana – high in potassium, bananas strengthen bones and reduce muscle cramping. (1/2 banana; use whole banana for added sweetness)
  • berries – a superantioxidant that helps reduce belly fat. (1/2 cup)
  • raw cocoa nibs  – contains flavonoids lowers blood pressure levels, reduces cholesterol and improves blood circulation. (2 tsp.)
  • coconut oil – a healthy saturated fat, it helps regulate blood sugar levels. (1 tbsp.)
  • flax seeds, ground – fibre rich, flax is a vegetarian source of Omega-3s and boosts immunity. (2 tsp.)
  • kale – high in Vitamins A and C, fibre rich, antioxidant and anti- inflammatory. (1 cup)
  • protein powder (vegan) – gives you 20g of protein per serving…wow! (2 tbsp. or 30g)
  • turmeric – superspice, need I say more! (1/2 tsp.)
  • Arvinda’s Chai Masala – this is my signature addition to the smoothie! Contains healing spices like ginger, cinnamon, cardamom and black pepper. I add a lot, about 1 tsp. to make this smoothie taste good. (1 tsp.)
  • water– for hydration. (add enough to get the desired consistency)

Cheers to good health!

A Food That Helps Focus: Banana Turmeric Almond Shake

DSC_0013.JPG

After racing out the door a little bit frazzeled, I made it out to one of my favourite fitness classes albeit a few minutes late. I was off-beat and couldn't get into the groove. As the instructor barked out commands from the front of the room, I found my mind wandering causing me to lose control of the sequences. Feeling disoriented I realized I wasn’t feeling it, but instead thinking about the next day’s meeting.

After making a few clumsy mistakes, I pulled my focus back to the class and all those sequences came back together as smooth as silk. And then something amazing happened...I started to have fun!

Acting in the present isn’t always easy but by training the mind to keep focus on what you’re doing can do wonders for enjoying all of life’s little details. Meditation is one way of training the mind to do this so I’ve added a morning and night meditation routine in my daily regimen.

After that class I was thinking about the foods that help with clarity and focus of the mind. Almonds came to mind as I was reminded about Ayurvedic remedy I would have when studying for exams to improve mental sharpness–an almond spice infused shake. Perhaps this may help before your next presentation, exam...or even fitness class! :)


BANANA TURMERIC ALMOND SHAKE

Ingredients: 
1 CUP almond milk
1 ripe banana
12 almonds, soaked in water
1 TSP. almond butter
½ TSP. ARVINDA'S CHAI MASALA
¼ TSP. turmeric powder (for some good measure!)
2 TSP. cocoa powder (optional)

Maple Rooibos Chai Latte

Do you love Chai but want it without the caffeine? Try making Masala Chai with a rooibos tea (it’s really a tisane, not a tea). Milder than a black tea and having no bitterness, rooibos makes the perfect caffeine-free Masala Chai — when boiled together, the spices can really be appreciated.

With the added health benefit of a dose of antioxidants, Rooibos Chai can be enjoyed at all times of the day and is suitable for both children and pregnant women (check with your doctor to be sure). Light and aromatic, it pairs nicely with a chocolatey decadent dessert.


MAPLE ROOIBOS CHAI LATTE

Method of Preparation: 

1) In a pot, bring water to a boil. Add tea bags and ARVINDA'S CHAI MASALA. Steep by boiling for 3-5 minutes. Strain into two mugs or tea cups.

2) Using a milk frother, make milk frothy and spoon over Chai. Sweeten with maple syrup. Serves 2.

Ingredients:
2 CUPS cold filtered water
3 rooibos tea bags
1 TSP. ARVINDA'S CHAI MASALA
1 CUP milk
maple syrup, to sweeten