Hey there friends!
How are ya today? I have to admit, this weekend was such a busy one that I’ve had a pretty exhausting start to the week, but after a very early night last night, I’m starting to feel like my normal self again. It’s amazing what a bit of extra shut eye and a few squeaky clean, delicious meals can do!
Speaking of clean and delicious meals, I’ve got plenty of food talk for you today. I hope you’re hungry!
1. Recipe of the Week. When it comes to nuts, it seems almonds, walnuts and Brazil nuts tend to get all the glory. Sure, they’ve got plenty of health benefits, but these days I’ve been enjoying my fair share of these:
Cashews are rich in iron, phosphorus, selenium, magnesium and zinc, and like other nuts, contain protein, heart-healthy fats, and antioxidants. This makes them a great food for preventing cancer and heart disease, as well as building healthy bones, hair and skin. Oh, and health benefits aside, let’s not forget that they’re also incredibly delicious, especially when smothered in this sauce:
What may appear to be some sort of a watery hummus hybrid is actually a sauce that I made with a mixture of miso, ginger, garlic, honey, and Chinese 5 spice powder. These are all ingredients that I often toss into my weekend stir fry dishes, but the beauty of blending them together ahead of time is that you don’t have to do any garlic chopping. (This is one of my most loathed kitchen tasks. Have you ever accidentally chopped a piece of fruit on a cutting board that had previously been used for mincing garlic? Not. nice. at. all.)
So how does it all come together? May I present you with one of my current dinner time favourites…
Cashew Chicken! If the only Cashew Chicken dish you’ve ever eaten has come from a Chinese restaurant, it’s time to be brave and try it for yourself. Like all recipes here on Eat Spin Run Repeat, this one is easy to make, suitable for a clean-eating lifestyle, and full of flavour. While I’ve used chicken in this particular dish, vegetarians could easily swap in tempeh or tofu to achieve a similar result.
2. Kiss Me Organics matcha. Not long ago, I was contacted by a representative for Kiss Me Organics who asked if I’d like to try some of the brand’s culinary-grade organic matcha powder. While I consider myself a pretty adventurous and experienced foodie, I’ve never really explored matcha. Yes, David’s Tea sells it, but I typically go for the flavoured teas rather than the traditional green stuff.
If you’re a matcha newbie like me, here’s a very quick matcha 101 lesson for you:
- It’s a very fine, powdered form of green tea. Because of this, drinking it means you’re actually consuming the tea leaf, rather than just the water that other green teas steep in.
- It provides steady energy to help you remain alert and focused throughout the day, rather than a quick hit of stimulation that you might get from other forms of caffeine, energy drinks, sugar, etc.
- It’s green! And therefore, it contains chlorophyll (used by plants for photosynthesis), which is a powerful detoxifier that can help your body to eliminate waste more effectively.
- This particular matcha claims to have 137x the antioxidants of regular brewed green tea. As you probably already know, antioxidants are wonderful for preventing diseases, combatting inflammation, and keeping us looking and feeling fabulous.
It just so happened that on the same day that I received the request from Kiss Me Organics, Kathy over at Healthy Happy Life posted a recipe for Lucky Charmless Vanilla Matcha Granola. (She provides the backstory for how it got its name in the post, just in case you’re wondering.) As you’ll see if you click over, the granola looks amazing and my mind was made up on the spot that I was going to use the Kiss Me Organics matcha to make her recipe. And so I did.
The process was simple – I just tossed all the ingredients together in a bowl, mixed them up, put them on a lined baking sheet and tossed it in the oven. The amount of matcha called for in the recipe was small (only 3/4 – 1 tsp for a batch that makes about 4 cups), but I stuck to it because I had no idea how strong it would be. After all, I didn’t want to increase the quantity, make a whole batch, and take a bite only to discover that I was chewing on what tasted like leaves. It’s rare that I obey recipes to the letter, but this was one of those occasions.
Less than half an hour later, I had this:
Although there weren’t many big clumps, it was golden and crispy and perfect.
Taste-wise, it was delicious. The matcha itself wasn’t very strong and I figure I could probably add a bit more next time, but I like the subtle taste it added. Unfortunately because this was my first matcha trial, I don’t have much to compare it to. Kathy on the other hand, is super experienced when it comes to this stuff and she just posted a fabulous review of matcha powders here. From what I understand, quality can vary a lot between brands, so I found her post really helpful for getting a better understanding of what to look for in a good matcha.
If you fancy testing a bag of Kiss Me Organics matcha yourself, you’ll find it on Amazon. I haven’t had a chance to make much more than the granola yet, but I’ve created a matcha Pinterest board and can’t wait to experiment with lattes, smoothies, and a whole bunch of other recipes.
So tell me…
- Are you a matcha fan? What brands do you enjoy, and what are your favourite ways to use it?
- Did you try anything new yesterday?