It wasn’t too many years ago that I can say I cooked without ever looking at a recipe book. Was I a culinary prodigy that had ingrown chef skills in my DNA? Certainly not! I had committed to eating healthy early on probably because of a few health crises that demanded it. A stubborn urinary tract infection kept popping up in my late 20s and early 30s that had me researching alternative forms of healing which helped a bit. But like many others, I believed eating healthy was a sentence to eating bland food. It wasn’t until I started studying culinary nutrition did I see my supposed healthy diet was doing a great deal of harm. What I also learned was that I could eat great-tasting food and still be healthy.
Let me say right off the bat that drinking a morning fruit-based smoothy without any protein or fat just did my whole system in and my urinary, reproductive and integumentary (skin) systems suffered for years. Once I started learning about macronutrients (proteins, carbs and fats) and micronutrients (vitamins and minerals), I was hooked…on the research and a certain cerebral way of eating. Yes, I committed to a healthier lifestyle but I felt that my days of enjoying food were done. In the name of optimal health, I was willing to sacrifice taste. Ahh, how deluded I was.
Throughout the years I have taken certification and diploma programs in nutritional counselling (Alive Academy of Natural Health) and functional nutrition coaching (Josh Gitalis) but I always felt there was a missing link that would complete the picture. Enter the Academy of Culinary Nutrition. In an intensive 3 1/2 month course full of instructional videos and recipe assignments I reclaimed my birthright to eat awesome-tasting food all while nourishing my body with whole and real ingredients. And guess what? Recipes became my friends.
One exceptional skill Meghan, head of the Academy, taught me was that we can take nearly any recipe and substitute with other culinary-nutrition-approved ingredients. Once I became confident doing that, I was bitten by the recipe-making bug. Between analyzing other’s recipes and creating my own, barely a day that passes that I’m not doing one or the other. I love that I’m now confident enough to adapt a recipe to suit anyone’s dietary needs. That’s what I did with this amazingly yummy recipe–Cheesy Quinoa and Cauliflower Puree.
I adapted Meghan’s recipe Cauliflower Mega-Millet Mash from her best-selling book The Undiet Cookbook. Although very similar, I was able to substitute some ingredients that didn’t agree with my young daughter. With a sky full of golden stars, I fully recommend the Academy of Culinary Nutrition to anyone who wishes to eat better and feel better. If you are suffering with any chronic condition, you need not sacrifice taste by eating a bland diet. Meghan will teach you how to use only the highest quality and healthiest ingredients in tasty ways to reclaim your optimal health.
And guess what? You could be a graduate in the next class of the Academy of Culinary Nutrition. For more information, head to the Academy of Culinary Nutrition website. The next session begins this September 2018.
Note: the “cheesy” in this recipe is due to a little nutritional yeast.
Cheesy Quinoa and Cauliflower Puree
This ultra creamy nutrient-packed meal was inspired by Meghan Telpner's Cauliflower Mega-Millet Mash from her best-selling book UnDiet.
- 1 cup water or broth
- 1/2 cup dry quinoa
- 1/2 tsp sea salt
- 1/2 head of cauliflower, chopped (about 450 grams)
- 1/2 onion, diced
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1/2 cup almond milk
- 1/4 cup nutritional yeast
- 2 T ghee or coconut oil
- 1 T lime or lemon juice
- Step 1 Add water, quinoa and salt to a pot and bring to a boil
- Step 2 Reduce heat to medium low and set cauliflower, onion and garlic on top
- Step 3 Place lid on the pot and simmer for 15 minutes
- Step 4 Allow to cool slightly then pour into a food processor
- Step 5 Add nutritional yeast, almond milk, ghee and lime juice and process until extremely smooth (about 2 minutes)
- Step 6 Garnish with a bit of pepper, Serve with Love and Enjoy!