Agave Lime Chicken

Despite the calendar telling us spring has arrived, one look out the window says otherwise. Mother Nature has been enjoying the winter a little too much to let it go. But that won’t stop me from indulging my tastebuds with fresh flavours that define the warmer months.

Agave lime chicken

Mango, lime and jalapeño – these flavours define summer and create the perfect dish to escape the cold, wet spring Mother Nature has decided to cast upon us, even if it’s just for one meal.

Agave Lime Chicken with Spicy Mango Salsa
Makes 4-6 servings

Ingredients

1.5 – 2 lbs. boneless skinless chicken breast
1/4 cup fresh lime juice (about 2 limes)
2 tsp lime zest
1/4 cup agave nectar
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 tbsp soy sauce
1/4 tsp onion powder
1 garlic clove, finely minced
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper

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Directions

1. Place the chicken in a large ziplock bag and pound to even out the thickness and help the chicken cook evenly. I used a heavy-bottom sauce pan and it worked wonders (even better after a stressful day).

2. In a small bowl, whisk together the remaining ingredients, then add to the ziplock bag with the chicken. Let marinate for at least 4 hours in the fridge.

3. Preheat your grill pan to medium-high heat. Brush pan with a little olive oil and place chicken on grill. If you prefer to cook on the BBQ, set heat to medium-high and cook with the lid closed. Cook 5-8 minutes on each side until perfectly cooked inside.

4. Serve topped with mango salsa (recipe below).

agave lime chicken

agave lime chicken

Mango Lime Salsa

Ingredients

1 cup mango, diced
2 tbsp red onion, finely chopped
1 jalapeño, seeded and finely chopped
2 tbsp fresh cilantro, chopped
Juice of one lime
Salt to taste

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Directions

1. Mix all ingredients in a bowl and set aside. The longer you let it sit, the more the flavours will infuse each other.

agave lime chicken

Bon appétit!

[All photos are my own and not to be used without permission]

 

 

Arbonne “It’s a long story” mascara review

If I could only live with one beauty product for the rest of my life, it would have to be mascara. From its small, shiny tube, it has the ability to lengthen, voluminize and accentuate your gaze. Add drama to your eyes and help it tell its story.

Arbonne It's a long story mascara

When I received a message asking if I would review Arbonne “It’s a long story” mascara, I was more than willing. I was curious about this mysterious company I has heard whispers about, and I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to review my favourite beauty item.

Arbonne It's a long story mascara

When I look for a mascara, I like to look for a formula that will enhance the look of my lashes without looking particularly fake. “It’s a long story” mascara delivered.

Arbonne it's a long story mascaraThe soft, flexible brush glides effortlessly through lashes to separate them and cover them from root to tip with product. Plus it’s the perfect size to grab each and every lash. The formula is infused with bamboo, pea extract and pro-vitamins B5, C and E to nourish lashes. It’s also dermatologist- and ophthalmologist-tested. The bonus is that the formula is vegan (yay!). All good things when it comes to a mascara. But how did it perform?

Arbonne it's a long story mascaraOn the left is my naked eye and on the right is one coat of Arbonne “It’s a long story” mascara. Beautifully lengthened and defined lashes, just what I love about mascara. It didn’t clump at all and the small brush made it easy to get all those tiny lashes in the corners. Bonus – the formula lasted all day and did not smudge. At the end of the day, a good makeup remover is all you need to end the chapter.

Arbonne is available at Arbonne.ca for the suggested retail price of $40 CAD.

[All photos are my own and not to be used without permission]

Peanut Butter Banana Pancakes

It’s saturday morning. Do you know what you’ll be eating for breakfast? Allow me to suggest a little something…

Peanut Butter Banana Pancakes

Peanut butter banana pancakes. Indulgent? Yes. Unhealthy? Absolutely not. Delicious? Hell yeah!

Peanut Butter Banana Pancakes

One of my favourite simple pleasures is brunch. There’s something about waking up and starting the day with a sweet, satisfying meal that sets the tone for the entire day. The house becomes filled with that comforting aroma and everyone takes a moment to slow down and enjoy the meal. I happen to love pancakes (not to mention the supremely awesome combination of peanut butter and bananas). But the added sugar in most recipes made them a once-in-a-while thing. Luckily, a few switches transformed them into a I-love-to-eat-them-almost-every-weekend-(don’t-judge-me) thing!

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Peanut Butter Banana Oat Pancakes
makes 7-8 large pancakes

Ingredients

1 tsp flaxseed
1 cup vanilla almond milk
3 tbsp rolled oats
1/2 cup whole wheat flour
1/4 cup buckwheat flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp cinnamon
3-4 tbsp natural crunchy peanut butter
3 tbsp pure maple syrup
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp apple cider vinegar
2 large bananas, sliced
Grapeseed oil for pan

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Directions

1- In a small bowl, combine flaxseed and vanilla almond milk. Let stand for 3-5 minutes to thicken.

2- In another bowl, combine all dry ingredients.

3- In the almond milk/flaxseed mixture, add the natural peanut butter, maple syrup and vanilla extract. Fold this mixture into the dry mixture. Once everything is combined, add the apple cider vinegar.

4- Heat a little grapeseed oil in a non-stick skillet or cast-iron skillet over medium heat. Make sure to give your pan time to get hot, it really makes a difference.

5- Pour batter in the hot skillet using about 1/4 cup at a time. When bubbles begins to form on the top of the pancakes, add a few slices of banana to the wet side and flip over. Cook for a few more minutes and transfer to a warm oven while you cook the remaining batter.

6- Top your pancakes with as many banana slices and as much maple syrup as your heart desires, and nom nom nom!

Bon appétit!

[All photos are my own and not to be used without permission]

 

 

 

Crazy Sexy Diet :: Review

Everywhere you turn these days there’s something gluten-free, vegan or cleansing going on. It seems that the world has become obsessed with clean eating, myself included. I’ve always been interested in healthy eating, but I’ve recently taken it up a notch, trying to learn as much as I can about nutrition, where my food comes from and the benefits of finding unprocessed alternatives.

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The day I received my copy of Crazy Sexy Diet – Eat Your Veggies, Ignite Your Spark and Live Like You Mean It was a day that truly opened my eyes to what I put in my body. The premise of the book is that what you eat affects how you look and feel, and ultimately affects your overall health.

Kris Carr

The author Kris Carr (a motivational speaker, wellness coach and health advocate) was diagnosed with a form of cancer in 2003 that affects less than 0.01% of cancer patients. Faced with this reality, she decided that she would take her life into her own hands and into her kitchen, or as she likes to put it, become CEO of her health and wellness. She began her own independent study about food and nutrition, immersed herself in the readings of doctors and nutritionists, and consulted health and wellness experts with the goal of healing herself. After years of research, Crazy Sexy Diet was born.

Why should you care? Well, Kris is just like us. She exercised, but also “drank in moderation-ish, and ate ‘right’ from time to time.” Sound familiar? Like all of us, she ignored her symptoms of allergies, bloating and constipation and attributed them to the (inconvenient) realities of a busy lifestyle. It’s not until she was diagnosed with cancer that she was forced to take a good look at how her lifestyle had affected her health. And her efforts paid off, she’s kept her cancer stable for more than seven years.

Avocado Toast

Don’t let the word “diet” scare you. This book isn’t designed to be a weight loss book. It’s more about encouraging you to eat a lot of organic fruits and vegetables, and an overall plant-based and vegan diet. In her words, “The Crazy Sexy Diet is a low-fat, vegetarian – or better yet, vegan – program that emphasizes balancing your body’s pH by eating more lush whole foods, low-glycemic fruits, raw veggies, alkalizing green drinks  and super-powered green smoothies [which help] reduce inflammation and boost immunity.” She delivers her message with enthusiasm, humour and compassion without being preachy.

Crazy Sexy Chili

The book starts with Kris’s story and then delves into each aspect of the Crazy Sexy Diet, ranging from the importance of pH values in foods, the dangers of sugar and artificial sweeteners and the realities of the dairy and meat industries, to the benefits of juicing, the positive effects of mediation and how to get started on this green adventure. The end features a 21-day cleanse complete with menus to help rid your body of gluten, meat, dairy and alcohol, and allow you to discover how amazing your food choice can really make you feel.

Crazy Sexy Juice

Crazy Sexy Diet is more than just a diet book, it’s a wellness book. It’s goal is to help you live fully, feel self-empowered and discover how lifestyle changes can affect your overall health for years to come. Her claims are backed by studies that not only show how a plant-based diet alters your genes, but also how it affects your mind and body.

This book has inspired me to become a crazy sexy wellness warrior (and believe me, it’s been a delicious journey). Although I haven’t adopted a fully vegan lifestyle, it has helped me to make healthier choices when choosing foods and has encouraged me to try new foods (like tempeh instead of meat, and brown rice syrup instead of refined sugar), and my health has definitely benefitted from it. I haven’t been sick once this winter, my skin has never looked better and I can now tell how my food choices will affect how I feel. I highly recommend this book to anyone who appreciates their health and is interested in flirting with a vegan lifestyle or even considering making the big switch. Your health will thank you.

To learn more about Kris Carr and her Crazy Sexy Diet, visit her website. It’s filled with useful tips and delicious recipes to help you live a crazy sexy life.

Happy reading!

[Photo credit via kriscarr.com]

Clarins Opalescence Collection

In 3 days it’s spring. Regardless of what’s really going on outside, I have faith that soon I’ll be able to shed the heavy layers and dark colours (anyone with me?). I’m already slowly transitioning to warmer weather – I’ve already adopted a new pair of strappy red stilettos, I’m cooking lighter meals and slowly adjusting my skin care and makeup routine. Who doesn’t love pastel eyeshadows, naturally-flushed cheeks and luminous skin. It’s everything that’s beautiful about spring! And coincidentally, it’s also part of the Clarins Opalescence Collection. The shimmery vibrant colours and luminous shades are the just the thing to add a burst of freshness to your look and welcome spring with open arms.

Clarins Multi-Blush and Eye Quartet Mineral Palette

The Clarins Limited Edition Eye Quartet Mineral Palette combines four beautiful shimmery shades – a pearl white highlighter, opalescent grey and pink shadows and a plum eyeliner – that can be used dry for a subtle daytime look, or wet for a vibrant, sophisticated look. Plus, Clarins makes it as easy as 1-2-3-4 to create both looks. Just check out the how-to below.

Clarins Opalescence Collection Eyes

Housed in a chic mirrored compact, the palette has a soft, velvety mineral-based texture that glides on smoothly and creates the most beautiful finish. While the shades are not very pigmented, they are perfect to create soft daytime looks. Looking for more impact? Add a little water and voilà! Instant drama! The shades last all day on the lid without creasing (assuming you don’t have oily eyelids).

Clarins Opalescence Multi Blush

The Clarins Multi-Blush (in 02 Candy above) is a warm peachy coral with a hint of shimmer. The cream blush glides smoothly on the skin before transforming into a powder and gives cheeks a natural-looking, radiant glow. It’s available in four shades of rose and coral that can be applied on cheeks or (bonus!) on the lips.

Clarins OpalescenceCollection Swatches

From vibrant to subtle, each shade is as beautiful as the last. These eyeshadow swatches were applied dry to show the possible pigment if you choose to build the colour or apply with a lighter hand. On the far right is the Multi-Blush (excuse the goosebumps, it was a cold weekend).

Clarins Opalescence Collection Instant Light Radiance Boosting Complexion BaseThe Clarins Instant Light RadianceBoosting Complexion Base gives skin a luminous glow while hydrating and providing a veil of correcting and perfecting light on the skin. The light, non-comedogenic texture is available in three shades – No. 01 Rose illuminates all complexions, No. 02 Champagne corrects redness and No. 03 Peach brings the glow back to medium-tone matte skins. 

Clarins Opalescence Collection Instant Light Radiance Boosting Complexion BaseI tried the No. 02 Champagne shade. Now, don’t let the swatch fool you. The product blends beautifully into the skin, corrects redness and leave a natural glow. It’s perfect for a girl like me who doesn’t wear foundation often and still wants her skin to look flawless. A quick swipe of the Multi-Blush and mascara, and you have the perfect polished look for the weekend.

Note: These products were generously gifted to me by Clarins (a big thank you!), but all opinions express are my own.

[All photos are my own and not to be used without permission]

Chocolate Fig Truffles

Rich and decadent, sweet yet salty – is there anything more indulgent than truffles? But indulge a little too much and you could find yourself breaking up with your skinnies. What if I told you I had a clean, healthy version of the dessert… would you love me forever? I know you would! Get ready, I have discovered the most delicious alternative to the luxurious treat. Sweet, chewy and dipped in chocolate with a hint of saltiness, it’s quite possibly the most perfect way to punctuate a meal.

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There are many levels of beauty when it comes to these babies. First, they are so delicious. Sweet and salty combine perfectly, while the chewiness of the figs make you feel like you’re indulging in something much more sinful than it actually is. In fact, the taste and texture almost mimics caramel (mmmmmm, caramel). Next, the simple ingredients are probably in your kitchen right now. Finally, they make such a wonderful hostess gift. Now, enough talk, here’s the recipe.

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Chocolate fig truffles

Chocolate Fig Truffles
(adapted from Giada’s Feel Good Food)
Makes 34 bites

 

Ingredients

3 cups dried figs, chopped
2 tbsp natural organic crunchy almond butter
1 cup organic chocolate chips (either milk chocolate or dark chocolate)
2 tsp coconut oil, softened
3/4 tsp Maldon salt flakes


Directions

1- Preparing a baking sheet by lining it with wax paper.

2- In a food processor, combine the figs, almond butter and 2 tablespoons of water, and give it a whirl until the mixture is smooth (you may need to scrape the sides every once in a while).

3- Next, use a teaspoon to measure the mixture and roll with your hands to form balls.
Place them on the baking sheet.

4- Place the chocolate chips and coconut oil in a glass bowl and place the bowl over a saucepan with gently simmering water. Stir the chocolate constantly to avoid burning
or hardening until completely melted.

5- Once the chocolate is melted, use toothpicks or skewers to dip the fig balls in the chocolate and coat evenly. Allow the excess chocolate to drip off and place the ball back on the baking sheet
and quickly sprinkle with the Maldon salt.

6- Place the baking sheet in the fridge for at least 30 minutes
(trust me, the colder, the better and the chewier).

Bon appétit!

[All photos are my own and not to be used without permission]

Monday Inspiration

Mondays can really suck. So here’s a little inspiration to help you start the week on a positive note!

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And remember that wether you’re having a wonderful week or a really shitty one, it’s always a great excuse to…

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Have a beautiful week everyone!

[Photo credit via Pinterest]

Discover… Domaine Home

The strangest thing happened the other day. As I was perusing my emails, I came across a home décor newsletter I don’t ever remember signing up for. This kind of thing seems to happen every once in a while, but the strange thing about it is, this time I was very pleased. I had discovered Domaine.

Domaine home pageThe beautifully designed site presents shopping, style and inspiration for the home, and has quickly become one of my favourite sources of home inspiration. The content is organized into a few chic categories:

Decor – aspirational interiors, breaking trends and tours by tastemakers

Celebrity – Hollywood celebrities at home

Living – domestic brilliance from entertaining to cleaning and organizing

How-to – the latest trends demystified, inspiring DIY projects and fix-it problems solved

Blog – the current obsessions of the editors

Shop – a carefully curated selection of home must-have from the editors

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Domaine 2It’s difficult for me to even pick a favourite part of this site since everything is so wonderful. I love the feeling of inspiration that comes over me when I look at the interiors of these beautiful homes. I love how I’ve started to look at every corner of my home as areas that can be transformed to reflect my style. I love the beautifully photographed recipes that make my mouth water just by scrolling past them on the page. And I adore the unique finds presented by the editors that I can imagine live in homes just as effortlessly stylish as those showcased on the site. 

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Inspiration is all around us, but let’s face it, we get a lot of it on Pinterest. If you love home décor as much as I do, I highly recommend you follow Domaine on Pinterest. Your feed will be brought to life with a wonderful selection of photos for every room in your home, unique accessories and even recipes that are simply a feast for the eyes.

Enjoy!

[Photo credit via domainehome.com]

Homemade granola bars

granola bars

Granola bars are one of my favourite snacks. They give me the fix I need to calm my sweet tooth and always feel like a treat. But gone are the days when I would buy a box at the grocery store. I would rather make my own at home, that way I know exactly what’s going into them and I’m sure to always have a healthy snack on hand.

granola bars

granola bars

These granola bars are super easy to make and only require a handful of ingredients that you probably already have on hand. And the beauty of these is that you can add whatever tickles your fancy. What would you add? Brazil nuts, pumpkin seeds? Or perhaps white chocolate chips or coconut flakes? So many options!

Ingredients
Makes 16 squares

16 large dates

1/2 cup chopped almonds

1/2 cup cashews

1 cup oatmeal

1/4 cup dark chocolate chips

1 tbsp organic almond butter (I used chunky)

A pinch of salt

Directions

1- Line an 8 x 8 baking dish with parchment paper and set aside.

2- Place the dates, almonds and cashews in a blender or food processor and pulse until the mixture is in tiny pieces.

3- Add the rest of the ingredients and continue to pulse until the mixture is a little sticky. You want to be able to form a ball and it stick together. Not sticky enough? Add a few more dates until it is.

4- Transfer mixture into your prepared baking dish. Use a silicon spatula to push the mixture down into the dish tightly and even it out. Place in the fridge for 60 minutes to allow the mixture to set.

5- Lift mixture from pan and cut into 16 squares. Store in an airtight container for up to 1 week (if they last that long).

Bon appétit!

[All photos are my own and not to be used without permission]