tart and fresh blueberry scones

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This past week I have been studying like crazy for my nutrition final and on my way to being a certified nutritionist! I have learned more that I could ever imagine and am excited to share this passion with others.

My head is crammed with facts and I have been finding myself snacking on frozen blueberries! Yes, random… but they are a delicious, cool snack especially in this hot Hawaiian sun.  Summertime means brightly colored fruits…my favorite being berries as these little clusters are packed with anti-oxidants, vitamins, and low in sugar content.

Adding lemon zest to the scones gives a slightly tart and refreshing taste.  These scones are light and fluffy due to the nut flour and butter—they are best eaten fresh or stored in the refrigerator to keep from spoiling!

A perfect, satisfying snack when craving something sweet and carb filled—but these scones are packed with protein, good carbohydrates, and nutrients leaving your tummy happy!

Blueberry scones

Directions

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • In a mixing bowl, combine all dry ingredients & eggs, kefir, maple syrup, and lemon zest. Mix thoroughly.
  • Thinly slice cold butter and using a fork or pastry knife mix the butter into the dough. It is ok if there are small chunks of butter in the batter.
  • Fold in frozen blueberries and lightly stir together.
  • Working quickly, as it is important for the dough to stay cold, shape into flattened circles and place on parchment lined sheets.
  • Bake for 20-22 minutes, until scones are golden brown on top.
  • Serve warm with butter or whipped cream! For a desert add a dollop of lemon curd!
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Acai berry bowl

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As I still consider myself a “newbie” to Hawaii living, everyday I am exploring and discovering the color and culture of this beautiful place. Living in a tropical paradise means sporadic rain showers, gorgeous rainbows, clear turquoise beaches, fresh fish, and colorful fruits!  Hawaii is known for many wonderful foods—a staple being an acai bowl.

Although they are colorful and sweet, traditional acai bowls are packed with sugar!  It has been hot and humid this week, so this sugar free version is a tasty, healthy and cool treat!

Compared to other berries, this tropical grape like fruit is full of omega fatty acids.  A species of palm trees, acai berry has been cultivated for centuries and is a staple of the Amazonian diet.  These dark purple clusters are high in anti-oxidants, essential fatty acids and low in sugar—and will not cause a blood sugar imbalance.

Acai berry bowl

  • 1 acai berry frozen smoothie pack, unsweetened
  • 1 tablespoon ground flaxseed
  • 1/4 cup coconut milk
  • 1 tablespoon coconut mana

A slightly sweeter affair…

  • 1 acai berry frozen smoothie pack, unsweetened
  • 1 tablespoon ground flaxseed
  • 1/4 cup coconut milk
  • 3 pitted dates

Spoon frozen acai blend onto plain whole milk yogurt.

Toppings…

Directions

  • Allow frozen acai to defrost for 10 minutes.
  • Blend acai, flax seed, coconut milk, coconut mana/dates together until smooth.
  • Spoon yogurt into bottom of bowl and scoop frozen acai blend on top.
  • Top with crushed nuts, fresh fruit, raw honey, or cacao nibs!

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Great as a post work-out snack!

Exercise stimulates the lymph to flush out toxins. Toxins flow out of the body through bile—increasing good quality fats will stimulate bile production and removal of toxins. Adding fat to your diet will help detoxify and remove toxins and wastes!

Fat is an key to managing inflammation in the body. Adding healthy quality fats will decrease inflammation and build healthy muscle tissue following exercise.

After exercise, the body needs nutrients, but the digestive system is still stimulated.  Food can only be digested in a relaxed or parasympathetic state.  Eating foods high in enzymes and probiotics will be easy to digest!

Soaked and dehydrated nuts are an excellent source of enzymes (due to the soaking process) and protein!

fresh basil and sun-dried tomato spaghetti squash pasta

Under the constant and warm Hawaiian sun, my backyard basil plant has bloomed and I can barely eat the bright green, organic leaves fast enough! I feel like I am constantly walking outside to grab some fresh basil to go with my scrambled eggs or to finely chop the leaves into a salad.  My recent favorite has been making homemade balsamic basil dressing (which I will post soon!).  The new puppy seems to love my basil plant too!

As basil naturally lowers blood sugar levels, with my blood glucose issues, I happily consume lots of this natural, fresh medicine!  Basil also acts as a natural detoxifier and normalizes adrenal and stress levels.  Yes, the Italians know what they were doing when they serve appetizers with fresh basil leaves and sauces to accompany your glass of wine.

This spaghetti squash pasta recipe is quick and simple to make for a dinner party or for an easy meal for one!  The fresh ingredients fill your plate with color and leave you satisfied, but this recipe definitely wins for comfort food…without all the harmful carbohydrates of course :)

Serves 2 for a side dish or 1 for a complete meal.

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Ingredients

  • 1 cup cooked spaghetti squash
  • 2 tablespoons butter or ghee
  • 2 cloves garlic (large), crushed
  • dash of sea salt
  • 2 generous handfuls baby spinach leaves
  • 4 sun-dried tomatoes, diced
  • 4 fresh basil leaves, sliced
  • 1 tbsp pine nuts
  • shredded parmesan cheese
  • fresh ground pepper

Directions

  • Heat a sauté pan to medium heat.
  • Melt butter or ghee with crushed garlic.
  • Briefly sauté spinach leaves then add spaghetti squash.  Add dash of sea salt.
  • Continue to sauté until dish is hot, adding sun-dried tomatoes at the end.
  • Plate and sprinkle fresh basil, pine nuts and parmesan cheese on top (add fresh ground pepper if desired).

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Tips for cooking spaghetti squash—

  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  • Wash the outside of the spaghetti squash and place on a cooking sheet.
  • Using a knife or fork puncture the squash with small slits as to allow air to escape when cooking.
  • Some people like to cut the squash in half before cooking, but I find the skin too tough to do this.
  • Cook for 45 minutes to 1 hour depending on the size of the squash.
  • Cut open and allow to cool before removing the inside seeds.  Use a fork to flake the strands of squash like spaghetti.

For more spaghetti squash inspiration see my grain-free chicken parmesan recipe. For more information about cooking spaghetti squash click here!