Movies, heartache & a strawberry smoothie

On a bad day, there is nothing better than cooking something beautiful to be shared with loved ones, dancing at the barre or smothering a mask on your face and drifting off with epsom salts. It’s all so healing. All of us are on a universal search for fulfillment in one way or another. In my heart of hearts I feel living a healthy life brings you a little closer to that phenomenon.

I used to believe in making movies, to me, that was the greatest thing in the world, pouring my heart and soul into films was how I made sense of the universe we live in, a way to discover it. I never thought that my one true love, film, would break my heart, but it did and I’m not sure how I would have dealt with that if my body felt weak and ill from unhealthy lifestyle choices. I don’t know if I will pour my heart and soul into another film, but how would I ever muster the strength for that again if I didn’t want to get out of bed? (Because on somedays, who wants to?) So what does get me out of bed? To explain that I take a green leaf from my friend and nutritionist, Alina Islam.

Strawberry Smoothie

Read the full post and get this delicious strawberry smoothie recipe over on The Quirky Princess.

Pancake Day

Since coming to North America, I eat buckwheat pancakes almost every other weekend. Given that it is Shrove Tuesday, the official day for pancakes and introspection, penance and confession, I decided to trade in my usual go-to for a more special recipe in light of this year’s pancake traditional edition.

This recipe is all too reminiscent of my childhood and when my mother would make the delicious South Indian dosa. While I am not making dosas by any means, I am invoking the spirit of them, with this savoury gram flour and brown rice crepe, filled with a masala potato mixture and served with my easy coconut chutney. It’s such a healing and nourishing dinner but has a real oomph for the occasion in question and beyond.

Masala Crepes

Get the full recipe over on The Quirky Princess…

Reimagining toast (& my new site!)

I’m sharing my confessions over at The Quirky Princess now. I don’t want you to miss out on what has been happening so will send you a reminder every now and again. All my recipes are now categorised in The Quirky Kitchen. Which means you can find recipes for breakfast, lunch, dinner and treats much easier. Click here to see what I mean!

In the past I’ve worked as crew, and in production for film, television and news channels, peanut butter and jam on whole wheat toast used to get me through gruelling days. Understanding what I do now about alkaline bodies, looking back, it probably wasn’t the best breakfast, but I did have the right idea. Switching up your grains, butters and jam for fruit could actually turn this into a superfood breakfast that is refined sugar free.

Blueberries & Chia Seeds on Toast

Cashew Butter, Blueberry & Chia Seed

(Serves 1)

Two slices of bread, toasted (kamut, spelt, rye, etc. etc.)
1tbsp cashew butter (or almond)
A handful or two of blueberries
2tsp chia seeds

Spread your toast with the cashew butter.

Arrange the blueberries on top of the toast, you can smash one or two into the butter as well.

Sprinkle each toast with a teaspoon of chia seeds.

For the rest of the post, head over to The Quirky Princess.

The Quirky Princess

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Hey Everyone!

I wanted to drop you all a line to let you know Confessions of a Quirky Princess is slowly transitioning over to The Quirky Princess.

All the love and support you’ve given over the years, has encouraged me to take that leap into the world of self-hosting and take my blog to the next level. I am super excited and hope you’ll find the new site more informative and easier to use.

Looking forward to your thoughts, please sign up and can’t wait for this new chapter.

Hope you all have a great weekend.

Love & Hugs xo

Fish À La Lily Aldridge

I loved the Vogue Diary with Lily Aldridge. It really inspired me to be more committed to my own work-out routine, doing all the things I love like ballet, Pilates and dancing, but it also made me want to eat the fish she makes in the video.

http://video.vogue.com/watch/lily-aldridge-train-victorias-secret-fashion-show-how-to-workout-supermodel

Something that really has helped me to stick to my workout goals these last couple of weeks is heeding the advice of my friend and holistic nutritionist Alina Islam, who wrote a hilarious rant on New Year’s resolutions. She suggested writing down our goals and it has really helped me to keep at it. I love to eat, so it goes a little something like this:

Monday: Floor Barre Class followed by a Ballet Class at Ballet Espressivo
Tuesday: Tracy Anderson Cardio and Toning
Wednesdays: Pilates class followed by a yin class at The Yoga Sanctuary
Thursday: Tracy Anderson Cardio and Toning followed by a Modern Dance Class at Ballet Espressivo
Friday: Pilates class at The Yoga Sanctuary followed by Tracy Anderson Cardio

Find the stuff you love doing, that way you’ll want to do it more and write it down.

Anyway here is my rendition of the beautiful meal Lily Aldridge cooks for herself.

Lily Aldridge inspired fish

(Serves 2)

Whole organic rainbow trout, cleaned and with a slit in it
Some orange slices
A few cloves of garlic
Some fresh green herbs
Some orange slices
A little olive oil and Himalayan Pink Salt
Some organic carrots

Turn your oven on and pre-heat to 350F.

Line a baking tray with some parchment paper and place the fish on it. Stuff the middle of the fish with garlic, green herbs and orange slices.

Drizzle with a little olive oil, sprinkle with some pink salt and lay the lemon slices on top of it.

Arrange the carrots next to the fish and bake for about 25-30 minutes.

Lily Aldridge inspired fish

On those days

The month of February always makes me think about our concept of love and yes it has everything to do with the fact that Cupid has painted the town red.

Growing up I used to have a very unhealthy attitude towards Valentine’s Day (something I out grew over the years when I began to understand consumerism). My Mum and Dad were really cute, some years they would send my sister and I presents, so we wouldn’t feel left out. Even though I now laugh about those horrifying rejections of past Valentines, they weren’t always so funny.

Because essentially that’s what it’s about isn’t it? Not feeling rejected, feeling left out or unaccepted, but people don’t just feel that way on Valentine’s Day, it just gets horribly heightened on February the 14th.

Like everyone, I struggle on days, my insecurities get the best of me, I wasn’t always good at overcoming those feelings. It’s so easy to love ourselves when we feel fabulous, learning to love myself on the days I don’t, is something I am still working with.

I wanted to share this with you because we are all in the same boat, I don’t want anyone to feel alone and unloved on any day of the year. It’s really hard, it is a very painful feeling and it isn’t easy to always love yourself. So let’s just own that, let’s say, it isn’t easy but I am still going to do it. I don’t have a magic formula, but developing a strong sense of self-value is the most important thing we can do for ourselves.

A sweet treat always helps, so on one of those days, I bake, because I find it really therapeutic! I love a red velvet cupcake and I finally adapted my favourite Hummingbird recipe for a cleaner eat and here it is!

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(Makes 6)

1/3 cup of coconut oil
1 cup of coconut sugar
1 egg
1/3 cup beetroot purée (just boil a beetroot until soft and then blend it)
1/8 cup cacao powder
1tsp vanilla essence
1 cup of buckwheat flour
1/2tsp salt
120ml almond milk with 1tbsp of Apple cider vinegar stirred into it
1/2tsp bicarbonate soda
1tbsp White wine vinegar

To serve: a batch of your favourite frosting, I love blitzing a cup of soaked cashews with 1/4 cup goats cheese, 1tbsp of agave and 1/4 cup of water.

Preheat oven to 350F and line a cupcake tin with six cases.

With an electric mixer, whip the coconut oil, sugar and egg together.

Combine the betroot, cacao and vanilla essence in to a paste and mix well with the coconut oil, sugar and egg.

Mix the flour with salt and fold half of it into the wet ingredients. Add half the almond milk, stir and then add the rest of the flour and fold in with the remaining milk.

Add the bicarbonate soda and vinegar and stir into the batter. Pour the batter into the cupcake cases and bake for 20-25 minutes until they are sponge like to touch.

Once cool, ice them with your frosting and they are ready to be devoured!

Winterlicious 2015 – Scaddabush (plus a chance to win a prize)

I’ve always thought that Italy has a bit of an edge on food, elegant and classy flavours that are timeless, like a William Shakespeare play or a Chanel 2.55. Earlier this week I got a sneak preview of Scaddabush’s Winterlicious menu and the two items that piqued my interest most were the salads. I’m all for indulgence but when done well, the lighter side of things can be just as decadent.

Have you ever opened a restaurant menu, glanced at the salad section and wondered who orders them? Me, I am that person. I love eating them and not just because they are supposed to be healthy, but because they can be so yummy. At home my salads are packed with protein, crunch, delicious dressings, colour and texture, and never bland.

The trouble with most restaurants, unless you go to a very specific place that relies on their salads, this dish is usually the most disappointing pick even though they deserve the same love as every other item on the menu. Encouraging people to eat greens, means making them as dynamic and appealing as all the other things on offer and yet most restaurants just throw that opportunity away, serving up leaves and an unimaginative drizzle. Give me a restaurant that knows how to whip up some mean greens and you will find me going back again and again for more.

Scaddabush Caprese Salad

In this instance, Scaddabush may have to take out a restraining order on me. Their Winterlicious menu has two beautiful salads which I could not resist ordering. A caprese salad (freshly made in-house mozzarella, Campari tomatoes, baby arugula, herb oil and basil) and for mains, a Tuscan Salad with grilled shrimp (baby green kale, arugula, marinated raisins, toasted pumpkin seeds, semi sun-dried tomatoes, cipollini onions, Pecorino cheese and balsamic lemon vinaigrette). You just know a lot of thought has gone into them.

Both salads were so lovely, fresh and vibrant. Each has unique notes that really stand out. The caprese, sweet and sharp balsamic dressing married with soft creamy cheese, plump red tomatoes, peppery leaves and every now and again my tongue was kissed with basil.

Scaddabush Tuscan Salad (Winterlicious 2015)

The Tuscan looked like a beautiful green nest covered in white Pecorino moss and had a fierce and zingy dressing. I loved all the different components, especially the sundried tomatoes, raisins and cipollini onions. Every bite was something different because I kept trying out different combinations.

Scaddabush Winterlicious Jail Island Tomato & Caper Salmon

They also treated the hubby to some Jail Island salmon. Crispy on the outside, succulent and soft flaking pink within, lying there in its tomato caper glory on a bed of seasonal vegetables alongside parsley butter potatoes, it is wonderful for those seeking healthy but hearty satisfaction.

Having said that though, whatever you do, don’t leave without trying their chocolate gelato, it is tastes amazing and life is too short.

Scaddabush Winterlicious 2015 Chocolate Gelato

Check out Winterlicious 2015 at Scaddabush from January 30th – February 12th. Lunch $18 (plus gratuity & taxes) and Dinner $25 (plus gratuity & taxes.)

GIVE AWAY TIME: I’ve teamed up with Scaddabush to brighten up your January. I’m giving away two gift cards worth $25 dollars and it couldn’t be easier, just follow me on Twitter or Instagram for a chance to win, I’ll be posting more details them later today. Good luck! (Toronto based only.)