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Mac n’ Cheez n’ Mushrooms

Creamy.  Savoury.  Delicious. The BEST part is it’s completely plant-based!


For the cheez sauce:
1 1/2 cups raw cashews (soaked, rinsed)
3 T. fresh lemon juice
3/4 cup water
1 1/2 tsp. sea salt (option to omit)
1/4 – 1/2 cup nutritional yeast
1/2 tsp. chili powder
1/2 clove garlic
pinch of turmeric
pinch of cayenne pepper
1/2- 1 tsp. dijon mustard

3-4 cups of sauteed mushrooms or roasted broccoli….or both!

For the macaroni n’ cheese casserole:
16 ounces of elbow or shell pasta of choice ( I used brown rice macaroni)
freshly ground black pepper
paprika, for garnish


Preheat the oven to 350.  Prepare your sauteed mushrooms and/or roasted broccoli first.  You can sautee your mushrooms in a pan with a tsp of olive oil or omit the oil and use water for a “healthy sautee”.  Next, boil the water for your pasta.

While you’re waiting for your pasta to cook you can start working on the “cheez” sauce.

Add the first 10 recipe ingredients into a high-power blender or food processor.  Blend until smooth and creamy.

Once your pasta is cooked, drain and rinse it, return it to the pot and mix it with the cheeze sauce.  Add the sauteed mushrooms.

Once you’ve mixed everything together, pour the mac n’ cheese into an 8 x 8 square dish (I used a bit of EVOO to make sure it wouldn’t stick) and garnish with paprika and black pepper.

Bake at 350F for 20-25 minutes, then let it cool for about 5 minutes before serving.






This recipe is inspired by Detoxinista 🙂


Spicy Cabbage, Red Lentil & Potato Stew

I’m so excited about this new recipe! It’s healthy, filling and incredibly delicious.  I’ll definitely be making this to warm up during the winter months!  img_0749Thanks to Oh She Glows for the inspiration – I’ve tweaked it a bit to suit my taste buds 😉


2 teaspoons of EVOO, 1 large yellow onion (diced), 4 cloves of garlic (minced), 3-4 tablespoons of my SPICE MIX (recipe below), 1 pound of green cabbage (cored and finely shredded), 398 ml can of diced tomatoes (with juices), 4 cups of veg broth (no salt added), 3/4 cup of red lentils, 2 medium Yukon Gold potatoes (chopped into 1 cm cubes), s&p to taste.

SPICE MIX RECIPE ——> 1 tablespoon paprika, 1 tablespoon garlic powder, 1 tablespoon dried minced onion, 1 teaspoon salt, 1-2 teaspoons of freshly ground black pepper, 1.5 teaspoons dried oregano, 3/4 teaspoon tumeric, 3/4 teaspoon dried thyme, 1/2 teaspoon cayenne.  Combine all spices in a small jar.  Screw on the lid and shake to combine. Store in a cabinet for up to two months.


  1. In a large pot, heat the oil over medium heat.  Add the onion and saute for 1-2 minutes.  Add the garlic and saute for 3-4 more minutes or until the onion is softened.  Keep a close eye – don’t let the garlic burn!  Add another teaspoon of EVOO if necessary.  (Alternatively, you can do a “healthy saute” by eliminating the oil completely and replacing it with water).  Stir in SPICE MIX and cook for a minute or so, until fragrant.
  2. Add the cabbage and diced tomatoes with their juices.  Simmer over medium to high heat for about 5 minutes.
  3. Add the broth, red lentils, and potatoes.  Stir.  Cover and simmer over medium heat for approximately 20 minutes or until the potatoes are tender.
  4. Season with salt and pepper to taste.  You can also add more of the SPICE MIX if you like it a bit spicier.





pasta e fagilio (pasta and bean soup!)

2 Tsp. olive oil
I chopped yellow onion
3 carrots, grated
1 stalk celery, chopped
3 cloves of garlic, minced
3- 1/2 cups of vegetable stock
1 28 oz. can of tomatoes, pureed with
fresh basil (processed with tomatoes)
3 tbsp of oregano
salt and pepper
2 tbsp. sugar
1 tsp of cayenne pepper (if you like it spicy!) pasta e fagilio
1 can kidney beans
1/2 cup of pasta (something small, like elbow or macaroni)
1. In a large pot heat oil, add onions, carrots and celery,  add garlic at the end. Cook for 5 minutes.
2. Stir in stock, tomatoes (pureed with basil) , sugar, and spices.  Simmer for 15 minutes.
3.  Add pasta and cook until tender. (According to package directions).  Add beans the the end.

3 Reasons Why I was Reluctant to Try Yoga

I’ve known Matt for over ten years. We met working at a bookstore during our University days. Studious as we both were, (wink, wink) I ended up with a Bachelor of Arts Degree and he one-upped me with an Honours Degree in Kinesiology & Exercise Science. He was a personal trainer when I met him. Matt’s level of athleticism, as well as his understanding of kinesiology has always impressed me. He’s been training for nearly twenty years and training others for about fifteen.

So, my question was simple. How had someone like Matt, who is so interested in training, athleticism and human movement, NEVER been to a yoga class?

I sat down with Matt before our first yoga session to get the scoop on WHY he had waited ALL of these years to try yoga. He gave me THREE REASONS….

1) YOGA IS FOR WOMEN Matt said that he was reluctant to try yoga because he thought it was something that was marketed for women. Fair enough. Typically, public classes are still 70-80% women. I could see how that number would be intimidating for a dude. I assured him that men attend public classes – they may be in the minority, but they’re still in attendance. I also told him that yoga is a system from the East that was designed by MEN! Get that. Most lineages of yoga that we practice in the West were developed by male gurus. Clearly not just a practice for women.



Matt said that he felt uncomfortable going into a class with a bunch of flexible people. I think this is a common misconception about yoga. The assumption is that in order to attend a class, you have to have a certain level of flexibility. Let me tell you this: before I started practicing yoga, I could barely touch my toes! I played sports for many years and rarely stretched. My hamstrings, hips and shoulders were incredibly tight! If you’re inflexible, it’s a GREAT reason TO attend a class!   I assured him that there weren’t any requirements for flexibility and that with regular practice, his flexibility would improve.



Matt told me that with his busy schedule (like many of us) he didn’t want other forms of training/movement to interfere with his weight training time. I completely understood.  Our time is valuable. And we have to make time for the things in our lives that are most important to us. I let Matt know that complimenting his work out regime with a yoga practice could help improve his recovery time and overall training results. I explained that yoga is often categorized as a “flexibility” practice but that it also significantly helps to strengthen under-utilized muscle groups in the body. Practicing yoga also helps to improve your posture and bone health, along with many other physical benefits. ‘Nough said.

So, I’m happy that I got to the bottom of this! Hopefully I’ve cleared up some misconceptions that you may have had about yoga. If you’re a man and you want to try out some yoga, I’m offering two workshop series for men who are brand new to yoga  in Vancouver and Burnaby in January 2016.  Check out the links below for more info!! Matt


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Thanks and happy yoga-ing!!


Gillian Tate

E-RYT 200

Yoga Alliance

Certified Yoga Instructor



Tomato, Lentil & Kale Soup

Tomato, lentil and kale soup for dinns! I’m trying to kick this cold and really didn’t feel like cooking tonight but this recipe is SO simple and takes less than half an hour to make! All you do is sautée 1 chopped onion and 2 minced cloves of garlic in a pan with 1 TBSP of olive oil for about 5 minutes. Then add in 3 stalks of chopped celery. Next add the SPICES….chilli powder, coriander, paprika, cumin, salt and pepper. I added some cayenne for extra spice.   Then add 1 cup of red lentils, 6 cups of veggie stock and 1 can (28 oz) of low sodium (or sodium free!)  diced tomatoes. Bring to a boil and simmer for 20 minutes. Finally add half a head of chopped kale to the pot. Cook for 5 more minutes. Taste and add more spices if you like.  😀  Hope you enjoy this recipe as much as my BF did!!Tomato, Lentil & Kale Soup