Homemade almond milk

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When I decided to reduce the intake of cow’s milk, I found the perfect replacement for it, almond drink or almond ‘ milk ‘. This is great milk alternative. It’s healthy, vegan and delicious drink, that goes pretty well with everything. My favorite use of this drink is with oatmeal and granola for breakfast or in my morning coffee.
There are many versions of almond milk in the stores, but not all are so healthy. Some contains preservatives, emulsifiers  or excessively added sugar. So, when you are buying this product in the store, read the ingredients carefully.
This is one of the reasons why I decided to make homemade version of it. Not only it’s healthier but it’s much more tasty. You can feel the real taste of almonds and it’s natural sweetened.
Preparation is simple. The tools you need is a blender and gauze or linen cloth.

 

Ingredients:

 

* 1 cup of raw and unsalted almonds (organic if you prefer)
* 4 cups of water
* 4 dates (pitted)
* 2 vanilla beans (scraped) or vanilla extract (optional)

 

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Preparation:

 

First you need to sink almonds in the water to stay overnight. Next day, spill out the water and replace the almonds in the blender with other ingredients. Blend until the mixture becomes smooth.
Next step is for me the hardest and sometimes I ask for a little help. 🙂 Put a gauze over a bowl and strain the mixture you made in the blender. The leftovers on the gauze can also be used. Put them to dry and than you can use it as almond flour. 😉 You get about 1 liter of this drink.
Transfer the milk you have made into the glass bowl and store in the refrigerator up to 3-5 days.

 

 

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Homemade granola with homemade milk.

Granola recipe you can find here.

Enjoy and let me know if you liked it! 😉

 

 

Crispy kale bites

This vegetarian meal is delicious, healthy and easy to make. The two main ingredients, quinoa and kale are very healthy, nutritious and recommend in most diets. Benefits of quinoa are numerous. It’s non gluten seed and excellent plant based protein source for vegetarians. It’s also high in fibers, vitamins (B1,B2, B3, B6, B12, vitamin E,) antioxidants, calcium, magnesium, potassium, iron. Kale is also super healthy food low in calories and high in fibers and vitamins.
Delicious bites are practical, it can be prepared as a snack, appetizers, breakfast or addition to a main course. Also, you can keep the leftovers in the fridge for next day.

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Ingredients are:

– 3 cups of chopped kale
– 1 cup of cooked quinoa
– 1 egg, large
– 1/2 cup of parmesan
– 1/2 tsp of salt
– 1/2 tsp of pepper
– 1/2 tsp of garlic powder
– 1 tbsp of dried basil

Procedure:

First you need to prepare quinoa. For one cup of quinoa goes two cups of water. Cook for twenty minutes or until water evaporates. It’s recommended to cook a kale a little bit, until it’s loose.
Next step: Mix one egg in a bowl, than add prepared quinoa, kale and remaining ingredients. Mix everything together and that’s it. The mixture is prepared. Take a tablespoon of it, shape with your hand and put on baking paper. Preheat oven on 200 °C (or 392 °F) and bake for 15 – 20 minutes.

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Crispy kale bites are ready for consumption. Enjoy! 😉

Avocado toast!

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Why is good to eat avocado?

This tropical fruit is considered as one of the healthiest foods. Its characteristic is that unlike most of the fruits avocado is high in healthy fats. 100 g of this fruit contains about 160 calories and 77% of the calories in it are from fat. Because of this it is very nutritious.

Also to mention that doesn not contain any cholesterol and it is low in saturated fat. Beside this, avocado contains a lot of vitamins, minerals, fibers and antioxidants.

I am not a medical expert but read some of the benefits of frequent consumption of avocado: reduce total cholesterol levels, lower risk of metabolic syndrome, support healthy blood pressure levels. Interesting fact-avocado is good for eyes, it contains nutrients Lutein and Zeaxanthin which are important for eye health.

Another reason why avocado is one of the favorite and popular fruits is that is in group of weight loss foods. It is very often recommended in diets by nutritionists.

It is very easy to combine avocado with some other food. Personally I am not thrilled with its flavor, but I tried it with some salads and toasts and it was very tasty.

Recently I made avocado toast with salsa and I was very satisfy so I decided to share this recipe.

The ingredients you need are:

-four pieces of bread (toasted)

-two avocados (medium size)

-tomato

-two cloves of garlic

-one small hot pepper

-chive

-olive oil

-salt, pepper

The process is very simple.

Mash avocado with fork and apply on toast.Finely chop remaining ingredients (tomato, garlic, hot pepper) and place in a bowl. Sprinkle with some olive oil, add some salt, pepper and chive (to taste). Stir the ingredients and apply over the avocado. Sprinkle with chia seeds and your delicious meal is ready. Enjoy!

Hope you will like! What is your favorite avocado toast?

Playlist for running!

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One of my favorite workouts for many reasons is running. Some of the benefits are: it built stronger immune system, burn fat, change body composition and metabolism, improve circulation and reduce the risk of a heart attack. Running is also such a stress relief activity. It helps you to cope with everyday irritation and stress.  What I like the most about this sport is the feeling after workout. I’m more happier, relaxed and field with the energy. You don’t need to run a marathon, few kilometres in the morning will make your day more productive.
Rainy and colder days are coming so I try to use each sunny day to do my jogging. During the winter I usually go to the gym. Treadmills are also good options. 😉
One of the most important thing that I bring with me when I do workout is the phone with a playlist of good music. Running without it can be a little bit boring and sometimes you need some good songs which will give you the energy and help you to persist. Currently I have a playlist with 25 songs which motivate me during my run so I decided to share it with you. Maybe you can use this playlist for some other cardio sport or you want to change your current running playlist. Hope you will like it!  Enjoy!

1.   Coldplay – Hymn for the weekend
2.   Cris Cab – Loves me not
3.   Alan Walker – Faded
4.  Jonas Blue – Perfect Strangers
5.   Zara Larsson – Ain’t my fault
6.   Sia ft. Rihanna – Beautiful people
7.   Major Lazer – Cold water
8.   Kanye West – Famous
9.   Coldplay – Belive in dreams
10. Axel Thesleff – Bad karma
11. Selena Gomez – Hands to myself
12. The Chainsmokers – Don’t let me down
13. Keyshia Cole – Shoulda let you go (RAH deep remix)
14. Jay Sean – Ride it
( Remix Bentley Grey)
15. Diplo – Revolution
16. Sia – The greatest
17. Major Lazer & Showtek – Beliver
18. Major Lazer – All my love (remix)
19. Fly project feat Andra – Butterfly
20. Major Lazer, Skrillex ft. Beyonce – Energy
21. The Chainsmokers & Martin Garrix ft. Bebe Rexha – On fire
22. Dj. Laingiboy × Era Istrefi – Bon bon (reggaeton/remix)
23. Avicii & Calvin Harris ft. John Newman – Life now
24. Martin Garrix ft. Justin Biber – Fly
25. Coldplay ft. Calvin Harrid Alesso – Possibility

Top five summer drinks!

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The importance of drinking enough fluids each day is very high. It’s recommended to drink 1.5 to 2.5 liters (or eight glasses) of water a day. But of course this depends on needs and physical activity. Due to insufficient enter of fluids the body can dehydrate over time and this could be dangerous for our health. During summer period this need is much higher. We matte more liquid from the bodies trough sweat and this should be compensated. It’s best to drink water and natural drinks and avoid carbonated soft drinks, juices with lot of chemicals and sugar. They are very unhealthy and harmful for our bodies. Luckily, I don’t like those and never had a habit to buy them.  Summer is season of delicious fruits and vegetables as watermelon, strawberry, apricots, cucumber, raspberry… These can be used in many ways. I will write you my favorite five drinks during summer. They are so easy to make- everybody can made them. Beside this, they are healthy, diet, but delicious for drinking. Sounds perfect?

1) First on the list is sassy water! Its made up by nutritionist Cynthia Sass. She claimed that by consuming this water you can lose weight. After only four days you can see results. But it’s also good for digestion. Ingredients are: 1/2 of ginger, 1 cucumber, 1 lemon and ten leaves of mint. Grate ginger, cucumber and lemon cut into rings. Put all this with mint in a glass carafe, pour water, shake and lay down in fridge to cool for at least ten hours. After this your sassy water is ready for consuming. 😉

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2) Next recommendation for delicious drink are smoothies! All you need is blender, your favorite combination of fruits and some milk. It’s optional, you can put some yogurt, vanilla or coconut milk, etc. My first choice is low fat Greek yogurt. If you make it more nutritious, this drink also can be a breakfast. One of my favorite smoothies is with 2 frozen bananas, 1 orange, 3 apricots and Greek yogurt. It’s simple but super tasty. 🙂

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3) This drink I started to drink because it looked very interesting. 🙂 But I also read the benefits of it and I was trilled, so I will continue with this good habit. I’m talking about infused water! This drink is rich in vitamins, minerals, antioxidants. To mention it’s great for skin, metabolism, gives you more energy than regular water, cleans your body from toxins and much more.There are hundreds of recipes available. On the pic you can see with lemon and blueberries.

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4) One of the associations for the summer is definitely watermelon! This is very tasty and refreshing vegetable at the same time. I found one recipe which I really liked. For this drink you need blender, three glasses of frozen watermelon, two glasses of lemonade and ice cubes. After blending these ingredients you will have wonderful non alcoholic cocktail. But adult version is great with some alcohol too. Vodka, cachaça or gin by your choice! 😉

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5) Ice tea is also very refreshing and tasty drink for summer period. I love it, but I don’t   buy it in the store. It’s full of additives, sugar, preservative… so I found recipe and decided to make homemade ice tea. I’m pretty satisfied and  planning to make it more often. There are a lot of variations and I will write you one. Put six bags of tea in 1.5 liters of boiling water. After six minutes  remove tea bags and let it cool. During that time you can make homemade syrup of strawberry and sugar ( or you can find in the store some natural syrup with your favorite fruit). After the tea has cooled you can serve this in glass. First put few ice cubes, syrup and than the tea. That is all. It’s ready for drinking! 🙂

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Hope you will try some of these drinks if you have not already. Enjoy the summer! 😉

Healthy breakfast!

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I’m always looking for some new recipes for healthy and delicious meals. This time I founded one very tasty, easy to make and super healthy, so I decided to share it with you. It’s Granola! To mention this recipe is from Jamie Oliver’s cookbook. I have got this cookbook as a present and I’m very satisfy with it. It’s very useful with plenty of nice recipes.

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Perfect way to start your day is with healthy meal as granola. Also it will keep you full for a long time. It has a stone fruits and seeds which will give you a lot of energy. Also these ingredients are rich in vitamins and omega-3 facades which are very important in our everyday diet. You can eat it also as a dessert or snack. A great advantage of this granola compared to granola from a store is there is no added sugar or additives in it.
I’ll write you original recipe for this meal. You can be creative and combine your favorite stone fruits, seed and dried fruits. I really like almonds, so I put more of it than is written in original recipe.

Ingredients for granola are:

°  oat flakes 200 g
°  stone fruits 150 g (mix of
almonds, walnuts, hazelnuts,
Brazilian nuts)
°  seeds 150 g (mix of pumpkin and
sunflower seeds, poppy, sesame)
°  desiccated coconut ( 1
tablespoon)
°  ground cinnamon (1 tablespoon)
°  olive oil
°  maple syrup or honey (6
tablespoons)
°  dried fruits (raisins, apricots,
cranberries)

The first step is to heat the oven to 180°degree. Than take oven proof dish and mix all ingredients except dried fruits, align the mixture in the dish, drizzle with olive oil and maple syrup. Mix all this once again and place in the oven to bake for half an hour. To mention every five minutes remove the dish from the oven, mix ingredients and return to bake. In this way you will prevent the mixture burns. When it’s over add the dried fruits, mix with a wooden spoon and set to cool.   Serve in the dish with milk by your choice ( yogurt, soy milk, vanilla milk, almond milk etc.)
That is it! Enjoy your healthy meal.

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Hope that you like it!
Some advice: granola residues can be kept for several days in a sealed vessel. Also can be practical, for some picnic or trip.

Latin-American dances: 5 Great reasons to attend a dance course!

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Since I was little, so far, my interest in dance has never stopped. Watching movie “Dance with me” I fell in love in Latino-american dances and since than dreamed that I’ll  dance like a professional dancer. Unfortunately didn’t have a chance because in my hometown,  was no dance school! Now I live in a bigger city and got that chance, but I’m aware that I’ll never be a professional dancer who goes on competitions. I’m a bit old for starting this career. 🙂 Surely, that didn’t stopped me to go to dance school for my own pleasure and because of the benefits that come with it.

Types of dance

There are two categories, Latino and standard dances. First of all I’ll introduce you with types of Latin dances. They origin from several different countries in south and central America. The ones that are most often learned and performed are cha cha cha, rumba, samba, bachata, jive, pasa doble and salsa. Some dances are easier to learn than others but all Latin dances are fun, with lot of quick movements, passion and whole body is in motion. There is also a lot of freedom in movement and in some  of them you don’t have to be in closed position with partner. On the other side are second-standard dances. The opposite to Latin dances their characteristics are closed position with partner, more formal, different in technique and rhythm. The five standard dances are waltz, tango, Viennese waltz, slow foxtrot and quickstep. I would describe them as more conservative, elegant and sophisticated dances.
Usually, all dance schools offer a different courses such as salsa course, course of tango and similar where you learn to dance only one dance. It’s good if you’re especially interested in one dance. My recommendation is to pick course of all dances where you learn all Latin and standard dances. On that way you can try a lot of different styles and easily find yourself.
This type of recreation has many benefits and I’ll write some of them that motivate me to regularly attend every class.

Improves health

I’m not a medical  expert but found some research that talk about how dancing affects the reduction of cholesterol. Dancing aids in lipid control, which raises HDL ( good cholesterol) and lowers LDL ( bad cholesterol). Also found that is great prevention of osteoporosis for men and woman, improve cardiovascular endurance and lung capacity.

Mental benefits

Repeating steps and routines is kind of mental exercise which improves our memory  balance between brain hemispheres. Each class you learn new steps which might be a problem if you haven’t memorized steps of the previous classes, but it’s not unusual thing. I also have that problem sometimes. It’s normal and you have to repeat many times same steps from week to week to remember. In your spare  time you can take little practice at home. 😉 Dancing also increase self esteem. People feel more comfortable with their bodies and body posture is much better outside of class too.
Dancing is great cure for stress and depression. After a long day at work or school best way to end your day is going to dance class. Thinking about steps and music  you forget everyday worries. It’s such a stress relief activity.

Weight loss

When you start with learning basics steps it looks like you don’t put a lot of effort into it, but at the time classes become more demanding and physically exhausting. It affects all groups of muscles. A lot of weight changes is ideal for core training and conditioning. The hips moves allow the gluteus to achieve a phenomenal workout. Your arms will also receive a workout while you’re standing in certain position with partner. All these also  increase circulation and helps us burn calories away. Depending on speed and intensity you can be burn from 5 to 10 calories per minute!

Better social life

This is the best way to improve your social life, especially for a bit introvert or shy persons like me. If you don’t want to attend dance course because you have no partner with who to go, don’t worry! There are a lot of people without partner there and you’ll find someone or you can dance with different people on every class. That’s even better! My dance teacher says that we know to dance if we’re capable to dance with everyone. 🙂 Over time you get to know people from your group. Dance school also organize parties on the weekend or during the week. People from all groups gather, spend time together and dance. I’ve been on several parties that my dance school organized and had a lot of fun. Wish that they organize them more often! Also, it’s nice that you can meet different people, by age, education, origin… Everybody are connected with same interest, dance, which could help you to start a new friendship.

Spending quality time with partner

From my own experience going on dance classes with a partner is very useful for your relationship. In this way you learn more about partner. In dance usually the man leads and woman is released and follows his footsteps. In the beginning I had a problem with that. Usually, I like to do things on my way but when it comes to dance I had to get used that he decide about steps, rhythm and pace. Some dances suit you more and the other to him so it takes a lot of understanding and patience if one of you learn slowly. All these improve your communication outside of class to. If you’re planning a wedding, this is perfect place to practice the steps for your first dance. 😉
My partner is not a person who is too talented for dance. He plays football for years, so it’s sometimes difficult for him to have sense for some things in dance, such as changes in legs, weight changes, smaller steps etc. He was persistent and after a while we could see a big improvement. Also he says dance improves his football skills trough better body coordination. For both of us it’s such a pleasure when we dance something we rehearsed well.

This is a short video from the ball, which is organized my dance school.

Hope that I have motivated and encouraged you for this type of recreation! Will you try it? What’s currently your favorite activity?