My lovely friend Gemma shared her kid’s favourite snack in my Mama Up-Front Chambers’ Mama. Since then I have been making popcorn for me and the kids. We like ours with a little twist- Cinnamon!
I love Cinnamon because it helps the body to process sugar by helping cells to recognise Insulin when it knocks on the door. This is called insulin sensitivity. You may have heard Insulin resistance surrounding tummy weight gain and type 2 diabetes. Cinnamon is a nutrient that can reverse this. Naturally sweet in itself it can help you to reduce how much sugar you use. It then makes cells more insulin sensitive meaning that the sugar will actually be used rather then allowing it to be re-circulating which increases blood sugar levels. Whenever I use sugar you will almost always see me adding cinnamon.
Cinnamon also boosts the immune system and is a natural bacteria balancer as it also feeds bacteria we need in our body. As an anti-inflammatory it can also help heal some of the potential chronic inflammation which may be present in the body. It is nice and warming and the flavour of cinnamon also helps the palate and taste buds to be satisfied which helps us feel satiated (full up) quicker- thus playing another role in weight balance.
It is also totally delicious! Total winner! It adds a really nice flavour dimension to the popcorn too.
We also love a salty sweet popcorn so I add some pink salt right at the end. This also helps balance the palate and provides some nice nutrients necessary to digest and absorb sugar and the popcorn itself.
It is so important to use organic corn kernels as such a huge portion of corn production is GMO. These foods hugely increase inflammation, especially in the digestive system and have a huge impact on the immune system. Not food in my humble opinion! So definitely not going to nourish my children.
Cinnamon Salty Sweet Popcorn
Salty sweet cinnamon coconut sugar popcorn. Great snack and really delicious.
If you are searching for ingredients in Hong Kong iDetox has a great selection (they sell Cocobono) at good prices- otherwise iherb is the general consensus. Use code WJZ679 for $10USD off your first order, Cocobono Coconut Sugar and Coconut Oil is my favourite source of coconut products (Only available in Hong Kong)
I inherited my parents Excalibur that they bought to dry fruit and make beef jerky….It gathered dust until I moved back to Hong Kong 2 years ago! They never made beef jerky. The search for good protein and fat snacks for the kids that dont contain nuts (school is nut free) led me to beef jerky. Finally I have actually made dehydrator beef jerky!
It is GOOOOOD!
Here’s how I did it- with some process pics to follow!
A delicious snack- packed with protein and fat. Fermented using apple cider vinegar and kefir then dehydrated to retain the probiotic goodness
Prepare the marinade by mixing all the ingredients together in a bowl. Keep the meat separate first.
Taste the marinade and adjust if necessary.
Add the meat and cover. Allow the meat to marinade for between 10-24 hours.
Use baking paper and coconut oil to rub the sheets to try and reduce sticking (like you would grease a baking pan)
Cut the strips into bite size pieces and add to the dehydrator sheets
Dehydrate at 113 Fahrenheit or 45 degrees Centigrade. This is to keep the probiotic quality of the apple cider vinegar and kefir. (you can also do it in your oven on the lowest setting for 6-12 hours) at for between 12 and 24 hours until the desired crispyness. Flip the jerky if necessary.
Store in an airtight container to retain freshness. Does not need to be kept in the fridge.
In my house beef jerky goes pretty quickly! I add it to my kids and husbands lunch box and is a really filling snack for them. Moreish!
You can do this for any meat. The thin steak I used was so thin that the fat on it was thin enough to go crispy however fat does not really dehydrate well so it is better to trim the fat.
The ticker your meat the longer it may take to dehydrate
Also put a tray underneath the jerky with some baking paper or silicon sheets to catch and drips
I have still got pumpkin left over and so decided to use my beetroot brownie recipe that I love so much- the brownies are lighter flavour but delicious and nutritious. I use the nut free version so my daughter can take them to school and nut ones for the weekend! I am not a massive coffee fan but love the festive versions so had a go at making the gingerbread version myself- it is delicious!
3 Eggs (To replace one egg: 1 tablespoon ground flaxseeds/chia 3 tablespoons water (or other liquid) I have done this completely egg free and they still turned out great. Stir together until thick and gelatinous)
2 Tbs almond meal (can also use buckwheat, oat, rice or chickpea flour)
70g/ 1 Cup Raw Cacao (this is THE BEST I have ever tasted!) ,
2 tsp baking powder (Aluminium free).
Heat oven to 180C and grease a tray bake pan/ silicon mini muffin pan like this one-. Roughly chop chocolate, and put in food processor with pumpkin puree, pumpkin spice, coconut oil and vanilla (if the pumpkin puree is from the fridge the chocolate will stay hard). Whizz until mixture is smooth. In another bowl, beat sugar, eggs and salt until foamy and thick. Fold in Pumpkin mixture. Sift in Almond meal/flour, cacao and baking powder; gently fold. Stir through optional extras. Pour into tray bake or use a silicon mini muffin tin and cook for 10-15mins. Cool completely in tin then cut into squares. This can easily be a cake, just don’t cut into squares! It is quite moist as a cooked cake so store in the fridge.
Serve it with your Gingerbread latte. I use ginger sugar but you can use coconut sugar and pinch of ground ginger.
Make Coffee- add sugar to hot coffee and stir. Use a milk frother (I use one of these but have also used one of these). Add milk and pumpkin spice mix and a little hazelnut essence (This is the one I use). Froth up and add to coffee.