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Oh My! Homemade vegan banana pudding pie!

Sugary cravings are only normal around Christmas time and as a vegan, there are many delicious dessert options with hidden health benefits to choose from. This week, I craved a classic banana pudding pie.

I decided I wanted to use a cookie crust with a banana pudding to suit my own taste buds. Here’s the recipe:

Cookie Crust:

  • A box of white Oreo cookies
  • 3 tbsp. vegan earth balance butter

I purchased a box of white Oreo cookies (which are vegan!) and blended them with vegan butter until they were the consistency of sand granules. Then press them into a pie shell container until even. Refrigerate for one hour while making the rest of the pie.

Blending white oreo cookies with earth balance butter to create a pie crust. By Kaeleigh Phillips.
Blending white oreo cookies with earth balance butter to create a pie crust. By Kaeleigh Phillips.

Banana pudding pie mixture:

  • 4 ripe mashed ripe banana (about 4 bananas)
  • 2 cups of almond milk
  • 1/8 tsp salt and tumeric
  • 2 tbsp pure maple syrup
  • 2 1/2 tbsp coconut butter or buttery spread
  • 1/2 cup almond milk of choice
  • 3 tbsp cornstarch
  • 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract

Mash four bananas together in a bowl and add the almond milk, salt, turmeric, maple syrup and coconut butter and blend together. Once blended, warm up and add cornstarch and additional almond milk and bring to a boil. Once boiling, stir with a whisk consistently for two minutes while the mixture thickens. Remove from heat and cool.

Heating up the banana mixture with cornstarch. By Kaeleigh Phillips
Heating up the banana mixture with cornstarch. By Kaeleigh Phillips

Once cool, pour on top of the cookie crust and refrigerate for two to three hours until it is solid. Enjoy!

Vegan desserts use top-quality ingredients and that usually makes it takes a bit more authentic than the typical pudding pies you see in stores.  Try adding a bit of flax seed and vanilla protein powder for a hidden nutrient kicks (especially if feeding to kids).

What kind of pie would you like to see Women’s Post make? Let us know in the comments below.

 

vegan-banana-pie

Top foods to boost your mood

Feeling down? Your diet could be a factor. Despite the everyday stresses of life, poor eating habits can also contribute to your bad mood. Lack of mental and physical energy is not something you want to deal with while trying to conquer the world. If you’re experiencing a case of the Debby Downer lately, try these mood boosting remedies:

1. Apples

They always say: an apple a day keeps the doctor away! Apples are one of the most valuable remedies for mental depression. The various chemical substances present in this fruit help the synthesis of glutamic acid, which controls the wear and tear of nerve cells. Try eating the apple with honey and milk. This combination makes an effective tonic that helps recharge nerves, gives new energy, and vitalizes the life.

2. Root of asparagus

The root of asparagus is highly nutritious and is used as an herbal medicine for mental disorders. Much like apples, it is a good tonic for the brain and nerves. One or two grams of the powder of the dry root of the plant can be taken once daily.

3. Bananas

There is logic behind the phrase ”going bananas,” you know! Eating bananas facilitates the cross-talk among the brain cells and affects the mood. To prevent recurring minor depression, a banana- a – day therapy will help.

4. Cardamon

Add some cardamon seeds to boiling water along with a teabag. These seeds will add a very pleasant aroma to the tea, which can be used as a medicine in the treatment of depression.

5. Rose Petals

Feel like a queen by infusing half a cup of rose petals in two cups of boiling water. Drink it occasionally, instead of the usual tea and coffee, and get the benefits. If you wish, leave it to cool off, place it in the refrigerator and drink it cool.

6. Cashew nut

The cashew nut is another valuable remedy for general depression and nervous weakness. It is rich in vitamins of the B group, especially thiamine, and is therefore useful in stimulating the appetite and the nervous system.

7. Herb lemon balm

The herb lemon balm has been used successfully in the treatment of mental depression. It alleviates brain fatigue, lifts the heart from depression, and raises the spirits. A cold infusion of the balm taken freely is excellent for its calming influence on the nerves.

8. Peanuts

Peanuts are good sources of trytophan, an essential amino acid which is important for the production of serotonin, one of the key brain chemicals involved in mood regulation. Surprisingly, peanuts may have good affects in lowering depression.

 

Remember: In addition to eating healthy, daily exercise and a positive attitude is also highly important. If you’re experiencing depression and anxiety and are having trouble completing day to day activities, be sure to also visit your doctor for more information on how to improve your mental health.

Good luck!

What do you eat to boost your mood? Tell us in the comments below! 

 

Delicious and refreshing raw vegan chocolate ice cream

On a blazing hot sunny day, a bowl of ice cream is the most refreshing treat imaginable.

Now, there is a way to enjoy this dessert without the guilt of eating something unhealthy. LoveWildLiveFree, a vegan recipe and lifestyle blog by Avra Epstein, brings you a vegan ice cream dish that is healthy and satisfying.

The Raw Banana Chocolate Chunk Nice-Cream uses bananas and chocolate as natural sweetners and it tastes like a delicious bowl of ice cream without any unnecessary additives! Bananas can be used in many dessert recipes as a sugar replacement and instead gives vital nutrients such as potassium and dietary fiber. Cacao, which provides the yummy chocolate addition has magnesium and high antioxidants.

You will need:

4 ripe bananas

Raw chocolate sauce (recipe below)

Raw Heirloom Organic Vanilla Bean and Salt Chocolate Bar

Raw cashew pieces, optional

Raw Chocolate Sauce: 

1 tbsp organic unrefined, virgin coconut oil, melted

1 tbsp raw cacao powder

1-2 tbsp lukewarm filtered water, or more if needed

3 dates, soaked for 10 minutes in lukewarm filtered water

 

Giddy Yo-Yo Chocolate. Photo provided by Avra Epstein
Photo provided by Avra Epstein

Instructions:

  1. Peel bananas and cut into coins. Place the bananas in to an airtight container and freeze for a couple of hours until frozen, or ideally, overnight.
  2. Place the frozen bananas into a food processor. Pulse until you create a crumble, stoping to scrape down the walls of the food processor as you go.
  3. Once you reach an even crumble, blend consistently and stop every so often to scrape down the sides to ensure that you have an even consistency. This will take a little patience, but eventually the mixture will reach a soft-serve ice cream consistency.
  4. Roughly chop a couple of squares of the chocolate bar and add to the food processor, pulsing a few times to evenly distribute.
  5. Depending on your preference, you can eat the ice-cream immediately as soft-serve, or, transfer to an airtight container and freeze until solid.
  6. Top with raw cashews and raw chocolate sauce (recipe below).

 Note: I always use a food processor when making nice-cream, but it can also be made in a high speed blender, just be sure that your blender is powerful enough to handle processing frozen bananas.

Vegan ice cream mix. Photo provided by Avra Epstein.
Vegan ice cream mix. Photo provided by Avra Epstein.

Raw Chocolate Sauce

  1. Combine all ingredients in a blender. It’s that simple, just make sure to remove the dates from the water they’ve soaked in before adding them to the blender!

Tip: If the sauce is too runny place in refrigerator to thicken; if the sauce is too thick add more lukewarm water and blend.

Original recipe can be found here: Raw Banana Chocolate Chunk Nice-Cream

RECIPE: Banana bread sandwich

Susan Russom is the author of The Encyclopedia of Sandwiches

A toasty sweet treat!

Two hunks of fresh or toasty grilled banana bread can be sandwiched with sweet ingredients, such as ice cream, grilled bananas, or peanut butter and jelly. Banana bread is a quick bread—a sweet, cakey type made with baking soda instead of yeast—that contains mashed ripe bananas. It is typically flavored with vanilla extract, cinnamon, and chopped nuts. Making banana bread from scratch is easy, but for a truly low-maintenance brunch, a store-bought loaf is your best bet. Thanks to well-known chefs such as Paula Deen, this old-fashioned favorite has been getting a lot of attention as the foundation of a delicious dessert sandwich.

  • Vanilla Spice Cream Cheese
  • 1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese
  • 1⁄4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1⁄8 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
  • 1⁄4 teaspoon pure maple extract
  • 1 loaf banana bread, thinly sliced
  • 3 tablespoons butter, divided
  • 2 ripe bananas, sliced on the diagonal

1. In a bowl with a mixer, combine cream cheese and cinnamon. Slowly add vanilla, maple syrup, and maple extract, beating until smooth and fluffy. 2. Butter both sides of banana bread slices. Place on a hot griddle and toast 2 minutes per side; set aside. In the same griddle, melt butter, add banana slices, and cook 1 minute per side, or until golden. Sandwich cream cheese mixture and grilled bananas and serve warm.

Makes 4 to 6

Go Bananas!

  • Banana Bread Tea Sandwiches: Cut sandwiches into finger-length pieces.
  • Banana Bread PB&Js: Use banana bread instead of white bread.
  • Banana Bread Elvis: Smother sliced bananas and bacon with peanut butter on grilled banana bread.
  • Banana Bread Ice Cream Sandwiches: Place a scoop or two of ice cream between two slices of grilled banana bread.

 

Excerpted from The Encyclopedia of Sandwiches by Susan Russo Copyright © 2011 by Susan Russo. Excerpted by permission of Quirk Books. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.