Pumpkin Turmeric Latte

pumpkin turmeric latte

I have never been a “winter” person. I just hate the cold. But, over the years as I have learned to practice gratitude on a daily basis, I have found many things I love about winter. Don’t get me wrong — I still prefer a beach to a snowy mountain, but there are so many reasons to truly be happy about winter. And one of those things is a steaming cuppa… And this cuppa pumpkin turmeric latte is really something to make you smile, no matter how frigid the temp outside may be. Brrrrrrrrrrrrr….

Other than steaming favorful lattes, some of the things I now truly feel grateful for about winter are:

* Watching huge snowflakes fall from the sky (okay, so a lot of the time, I’m inside watching them, but still grateful)
* Christmas music (all the way from Thanksgiving to New Years)
* Fuzzy boots
* Big cozy sweaters
* Delicious bowls of hot steaming soup
* The smell of chestnuts roasting in the street vendors’ carts (yup, it’s just like the song says)
* My dogs’ total happiness in the snow
* Christmas movies

During the winter, I experiment with latte recipes all of the time. I mean, it’s like I’ve become possessed or something. And, I have never steamed my milk! I heat up my ingredients in a pot and these blitz it in the blender and pour it into my favorite mug. And ta-da we have an awesome latte.

Turmeric lattes are all the rage right now. There’s a little cafe around the corner from me that has them on the menu. But… blechhhhhh… they are gross. And I have no idea why. I mean, if you are putting in the right ingredients, it’s not hard to make it come out right. Anyway, these are the right ingredients, so go ahead whip this up!

And, after you drink this awesome pumpkin turmeric latte, if you want to try another warming winter recipe, try my Hot Chocolate Smoothie Bowl!

pumpkin turmeric latte

Here are some of the healing ingredients in this pumpkin turmeric latte:

Pumpkin can help reduce pain and fever and can soothe stomach irritations. It’s a great food to treat constipation, allergies and asthma. It’s high in vitamin A and can help protect your lungs and intestines from cancer.

Turmeric is actually a Chinese herb (Jiang Huang). It is great for reducing inflammation throughout the body. If you suffer from aches and pains in your joints, try turmeric. It can help relieve menstrual pain and some other abdominal pains but, if you are pregnant, ask your doctor before you eat too much turmeric.

Black pepper is also a Chinese herb (Hu Jiao). It’s used to control vomiting and diarrhea and is good for some stomach pains. This common herb also can help the body more easily absorb nutrients, and it is sometimes prescribed to lessen the symptoms of respiratory ailments. Be sure to use black pepper whenever you use turmeric, because it increases the body’s ability to absorb the turmeric.

Collagen strengthens bones and muscles, keeps your joints healthy, improves flexibility and concentration, and helps heal your digestive system. It also keeps you looking youthful.

Dates are rich in potassium, dietary fiber and tannins. Fiber is good for your gut and tannins help the body fight inflammation and infection. Dates are also rich in vitamin A and iron. The most amazing thing about dates is that they can be used to replace sugar in almost anything. I stopped using sweetened protein powders in my smoothies and now I use unsweetened ones but I add a few dates.

Cinnamon is one of the best herbs to warm the body. It’s great if you have a cold. If you are nauseous or have diarrhea, go for the cinnamon. It also gives you energy and helps with menstrual pain. Cinnamon is a Chinese herb: “gui zhi” is the cinnamon twig and “rou gui” is the cinnamon bark. Both are warming and are used for a variety of ailments. In the winter I add cinnamon to all sorts of foods. It helps with the common cold, swelling, various menstrual issues and some aches and pains. Be careful with it if you have a fever because it is so warming.

In Asian medicine, we use coconut to strengthen the body, reduce swelling, and stop bleeding. Coconut kills viruses, bacteria, and parasites. It’s good for all types of infections and viruses in the body, including the flu, bronchitis, tapeworms, urinary tract infections, and herpes. And perhaps most importantly, it helps you keep your mind sharp and it makes it easier for you to focus. I like to use full-fat canned coconut milk for these lattes.

pumpkin turmeric latte

Pumpkin Turmeric Latte
Recipe type: beverage, latte, hot drink
Cuisine: paleo, whole30, breakfast, snack, dairy-free
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 3
This is the perfect cup of steaming deliciousness. It's so healing and no steamed milk is required. I make mine with dairy-free milk.
  1. Heat the coconut milk and the water in a small pot.
  2. Pour the hot milk into your blender and add the rest of the ingredients.
  3. Whiz it up good.
  4. Enjoy!

pumpkin turmeric latte

Salt And Pepper Roasted Green Beans

These salt and pepper roasted green beans are a deliciously simple way to improve your digestion…

salt and pepper roasted green beans

Sea salt is awesome. I don’t think it’s on the official superfoods list, but it should be. Did you know that if you don’t have enough salt, your body gets dehydrated? And if you are getting the right amount of salt, then your energy levels will improve. So, try these salt and pepper roasted green beans… they are a quick, delicious fix!

I’ve learned to put a big pinch of sea salt into my water in the morning. I’ve been doing this for years and now I’m seeing that this salted water is becoming an “in” thing. Maybe that’s because sea salt contains some really great minerals (think magnesium, calcium, potassium, zinc, iron, and iodine).

Now, don’t start telling people that I said salt is awesome. I said SEA salt is awesome. Don’t go buying what passes for salt in the supermarket. “Table” salt is not sea salt. Buy real sea salt!

My favorite type of sea salt is pink Himalayan salt. I know, as I’m typing this, I’m thinking to myself that all this talk of salt is probably boring you to tears. But, it’s so important, so I’m just going to continue on… Himalayan sea salt is good for your bones, sleep, libido, muscles, and heart. Really. Ok, my rant is done.

Now, on to this recipe for salt and pepper roasted green beans. It’s so simple. It’s the perfect side dish. In my house we eat these beans with everything. For awhile I was making my recipe for Sesame Green Beans. A lot.  But sometimes Asian tastes don’t go well with what I’m serving, so enter these simple roasted green beans that are just so good and have so much flavor — and it’s all from salt and pepper.

Try these beans and you’ll be hooked like I am!

salt and pepper roasted green beans

These salt and pepper roasted green beans have so few ingredients but they are so good for you:

Green beans have a lot of fiber, vitamin A, vitamin B, and iron. Eating green beans can help rid the body of toxins and can help regulate metabolism. They also can help relieve that feeling of excessive fullness in your stomach and excessive belching. In Chinese medicine, green beans are eaten to clear up chronic diarrhea and even for some lower back pain.

Sea salt, as discussed above, contains magnesium, calcium, potassium, zinc, iron, and iodine — all minerals that are necessary for a healthy body. Himalayan sea salt is good for your bones, sleep, libido, muscles, and heart.

Black pepper is a Chinese herb (Hu Jiao). It’s used to control vomiting and diarrhea and is good for some stomach pains. This common herb also can help the body more easily absorb nutrients, and it is sometimes prescribed to lessen the symptoms of respiratory ailments.

salt and pepper roasted green beans

Salt And Pepper Roasted Green Beans
Recipe type: vegetables, roasting, beans, green beans
Cuisine: paleo, vegan, vegetarian, whole30
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4
This is the easiest, most delicious, and healthiest side dish ever! Just try it and you'll be hooked!
  • 1 lb.fresh green beans, trimmed
  • 2 Tbs extra-virgin olive oil
  • kosher-style sea salt and black pepper to taste (use a generous amount)
  1. Preheat your oven to 400°F convection setting, or 425° regular bake setting.
  2. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.
  3. Spread the beans onto the sheet. Don't pile them up; spread them out.
  4. Drizzle the oil on top of the beans.
  5. Sprinkle a generous amount of sea salt and fresh ground pepper onto the beans. Mix them up with your hands or tongs.
  6. Roast in the oven 20 minutes, or until the edges start to brown and the beans are crisp-tender.
  7. Enjoy!

salt and pepper roasted green beans

Pineapple Turmeric Smoothie

There are so many healing ingredients in this pineapple turmeric smoothie… you can feel the energy as you drink it!

pineapple turmeric smoothie

It’s Memorial Day and it’s raining. To many people this would be an unhappy turn of events, but I have to say, for me… not so much. The last 3 days were gorgeous. They were filled with beach, BBQ and friends. So, a rainy gray day is not so bad because I get to do all of the things I would never do if it was nice outside.

Everyone has one of those to-do list to get through. For me, that list is overflowing with the not-so-fun tasks involved in packing up my house and moving to an apartment. Ugh… the packing. Ick… the cleaning… But, I get to procrastinate and instead of getting through these arduous tasks as quickly as I’d like, I end up in my kitchen. A lot. And this Pineapple Turmeric Smoothie is my ode-to-sunshine creation on this dreary day.

Yellow is a happy color. And, I guess even more importantly, I had a big container of pineapple in the fridge that was leftover from yesterday’s day at the beach. And the cherries that you see on top — well, those are from the beach too… I just love using the leftovers in the fridge in new and delicious ways! So, when you make this smoothie, feel free to top it with whatever’s in your fridge…

If you want to try another “happy” smoothie, try my Orange Banana Smoothie recipe.

pineapple turmeric smoothie

There are so many great ingredients in this smoothie:

Pineapple is great for your digestion and it can help stop diarrhea. It’s especially good in the summer because it fights against heatstroke.

Turmeric is actually a Chinese herb (Jiang Huang). It is great for reducing inflammation throughout the body. If you suffer from aches and pains in your joints, try turmeric. It can help relieve menstrual pain and some other abdominal pains but, if you are pregnant, ask your doctor before you eat too much turmeric.

Maca Root is one of the superfoods I take every day. It has many healthy benefits including increasing libido, helping menopausal symptoms, relieving menstrual cramps, regulating hormones, and increasing energy.

Camu Camu is a plant-based powder that has the ability to boost your immune system and balance your mood. It has a large amount of vitamin C, can reduce inflammation, and can help improve mental clarity.

Lucuma powder is made from a South American tropical fruit. It’s sweet and contains a good amount of calcium, magnesium and potassium. It also has a great anti-inflammatory effect and can improve the condition of your skin. If you don’t have access to lucuma, you can use coconut sugar or add any sweetener that makes you happy.

Black Pepper is a Chinese herb called Hu Jiao. It’s used to alleviate diarrhea, vomiting and some stomach pains. When you combine black pepper with turmeric, the turmeric is more easily absorbed by the body, so this is a great combination!

In Asian medicine, we use coconut to strengthen the body, reduce swelling, and stop bleeding. Coconut kills viruses, bacteria, and parasites. It’s good for all types of infections and viruses in the body, including the flu, bronchitis, tapeworms, urinary tract infections, and herpes.

pineapple turmeric smoothie


Pineapple Turmeric Smoothie
Recipe type: Smoothies
Cuisine: fruit, breakfast, snack
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 2
This smoothie is delicious! It's both sweet and tart and it will heal what ails you!
  • 3 cups cubed fresh pineapple
  • 2 cups ice
  • 2 tsp maca root powder (optional) (I use this one)
  • 3 tsp lucuma powder (or substitute sweetener of your choice) (try this one)
  • 1 tsp camu camu powder (optional) (here's one)
  • 1 tsp turmeric powder (I like this one)
  • 10 grinds of black pepper
  • ½ cup unsweetened coconut flakes (here's a good one)
  • ⅓ cup shelled pistachio nuts
  • ¼ cup almond milk
  • fresh cherries for garnish
  1. Put all ingredients, except the cherries, into your blender.
  2. Whiz it up until it's really smooth.
  3. Pour into glasses.
  4. Sip away!

pineapple turmeric smoothie

Crispy Spicy Roasted Potatoes

If you’ve been looking for the perfect potato recipe, this is it — crispy spicy roasted potatoes for the win!

crispy spicy roasted potatoes

It seems like such a simple thing. Crispy roasted potatoes should be a really easy thing to make. And, they are… but I didn’t get it really right until this time. And I’ve been playing with this recipe for a long, long time. But once you get the right ratio of spices and the right amount of fat and the correct baking times and temperature, you can use this formula time after time with whatever spices and herbs you like and it will never disappoint.

Oh boy, I just read that paragraph I just typed. I sound so serious and I’m talking about potatoes! OK, so it’s really not a serious topic, but these potatoes are so awesome. And so easy. I guess I just feel a little humbled by these simple potatoes because it took me until now to get them so perfectly crispy and buttery and delicious.

You have to try this recipe.

I mean, who doesn’t need a great easy people-pleasing recipe in their arsenal that can be pulled out at any time? And this recipe is so versatile. I’ve made these crispy spicy roasted potatoes for breakfast. I’ve made them for dinner. And, mostly, I’ve eaten the leftovers at really weird times during the day.

If you are a spicy-potato-recipe fan, you should also try my Buffalo Chicken With Potatoes And Bacon recipe!

crispy spicy roasted potatoes

Aside from the amazing texture and taste, these potatoes are awesome for you:

Potatoes are good at soothing ulcers and neutralizing acid in the stomach and they help relieve constipation. These tubers also can help relieve arthritic inflammation. So, even though sweet potatoes are thought of as the white potato’s more nutrition sister, regular old potatoes can be just what the doctor ordered.

Garlic is amazing in its antiviral and antibacterial capabilities. Garlic is actually a Chinese herb (Da Suan). It’s used to kill toxins and parasites and also to reduce swelling in the body. It’s what I call a great “A” herb: anesthetic, antibacterial, anti fungal, antioxidant, antiviral, etc…. I almost always use fresh garlic in my recipes, but for this recipe, garlic powder works wonderfully.

Black Pepper is a Chinese herb called Hu Jiao. It’s used to alleviate diarrhea, vomiting and some stomach pains.

Oregano is a powerful antioxidant and it is great at fighting bacteria. It’s also known as an herb that brings joy and happiness to people.

crispy spicy roasted potatoes

Crispy Spicy Roasted Potatoes
Recipe type: side dish, potatoes
Cuisine: American
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4
So simple and so perfect. This is the only recipe you will need for crispy potatoes.
  • 4 medium yellow potatoes, unpeeled and cut into bite-size pieces
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • ½ tsp dried thyme
  • ½ tsp black pepper (or to taste)
  • sea salt to taste
  • 1-1/2 Tbs butter or ghee, melted (here's a good organic ghee)
  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F.
  2. Boil the potatoes for 6-minutes.
  3. Drain well.
  4. Toss the drained potatoes in a large bowl with the rest of the ingredients.
  5. Spread the potatoes in a single layer on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Try to spread out the potatoes so that they are not touching each other.
  6. Roast for about 45 minutes, or until the potatoes are golden and crispy.
  7. Enjoy!
  8. Note: I've seen lots of versions of this recipe and oftentimes the baking time is much less than 45 minutes, so check your potatoes frequently. Mine were perfect at 45 minutes.


crispy spicy roasted potatoes

Hot And Sour Soup

Once you make this homemade hot and sour soup, you won’t want take-out again!

Hot And Sour Soup-0852

It’s freezing here in New York. I’m not complaining, because the winter has been so mild, but the mild weather did stop me from making as many pots of hot soup as I usually do. This hot and sour soup made me realize how much I miss having a big pot of healing warming soup in the fridge at all times!

When I was a kid I remember getting hot and sour soup from the Chinese restaurant and we used to top it with those deliciously fried Chinese crispy noodles… does anyone else remember this? I’m so out of the take-out food loop now that I don’t even know if you still get those little waxy bags of crunchy noodles… But, this soup recipe is so good that it doesn’t need the noodles. Really. I did, however, put little dots of sriracha in mine at the end because it looks pretty and made it extra awesome.

The beauty of hot and sour soup is that you can make it as spicy or as mild as you like. Did you know that the spice comes from black pepper? I remember being surprised at that the first time I made it… but this makes it even easier to prepare and to shop for.  You can customize it with whatever mushrooms you like (I rehydrated some dried shiitakes) and whatever seaweed you like (if any).  I added pork to this pot, but feel free to use chicken or if you are vegan, use tofu.

So, this week we kept this pot of comforting, warming, spicy soup in a big pot in the fridge for 4 days. We ate a lot of it. Like, an embarrassing amount. But it’s so good. And it’s so light and healthy. And it just makes you feel good. And, I also remembered another thing that happens here when there’s a pot of soup in the fridge all week. Today I went to take the pot out, got my bowl and spoon ready, opened the lid, and saw about 1/4 cup of soup left in the bottom of the pot. It’s like leaving one sheet of toilet tissue in the bathroom… ugh!!!! So disappointing, but so typical!

If you want to jump on the soup bandwagon, you should definitely also make a pot of my Butternut Squash And Apple Soup.

Hot And Sour Soup (rehydrated shiitakes)-0831

Here’s some of the great things in this soup:

I love mushrooms. In Chinese medicine, mushrooms ARE medicine. They are herbs. They are one of the most healing foods around. Shiitake mushrooms are probably the variety of mushroom that I use most. I love the way they taste and they help lower blood pressure and cholesterol. These shrooms also promote healing and have been found to fight tumors. In Asia, shiitake mushrooms are often fed to a patient who has just had surgery to help the healing process.

I like to use some type of seaweed in my hot and sour soup. I used nori in this pot because it’s what I had on hand, but feel free to use whatever type you like. Seaweed is good for your thyroid gland and your lymphatic system. If you have swelling in your body or you are retaining water, seaweed is great because it acts as a diuretic. In the olden days, seaweed was fed to people to get rid of goiters and tuberculosis.

Bamboo shoots actually make you feel better if you have overeaten and are feeling full and bloated or if you have diarrhea. And, if you have a hangover, reach for the bamboo shoots because they will help you feel better faster. This vegetable can also act as a diuretic, so if you have edema, this would be good for you.

Black pepper is a Chinese herb (Hu Jiao). It helps relieve vomiting and food poisoning.

Pork strengthens the digestive system, helps with constipation, and can moisten a dry cough and other dryness in the body. It’s also good to strengthen your qi and give you energy.

Hot And Sour Soup

Hot And Sour Soup
Recipe type: soup
Cuisine: Chinese
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4
Recipe adapted This is better than take-out. It's delicious, healthy, and so incredibly warming!
  • 1 oz dried shiitake mushrooms, rehydrated in a bowl of hot water for about 20 minutes (be sure to save the soaking liquid to add to the soup)
  • 1 qt chicken broth
  • 1 Tbs liquid aminos (or soy sauce) (you can buy aminos here)
  • ⅓ lb pork cutlet, sliced into thin strips (or use tofu for a vegan version)
  • 5 oz can sliced bamboo shoots, drained
  • ½ tsp sea salt
  • ¼ tsp (or more to taste) ground black pepper
  • 7 Tbs white vinegar
  • 3 Tbs cornstarch whisked together with 4 Tbs water
  • 2 Tbs nori krinkles (or substitute another type of seaweed) (you can get them here)
  • 1 beaten egg
  • Optional toppings: extra nori, drizzle of sriracha
  1. Soak the mushrooms in a small bowl of water. Drain them and reserve the soaking liquid. Slice the shrooms.
  2. In a large soup pot, heat the chicken broth, aminos, and sea salt.
  3. When it comes to a boil, add the mushroom soaking liquid, pork strips, nori, and bamboo shoots.
  4. Reduce heat to a simmer and cover for 5 minutes.
  5. Add the vinegar and black pepper.
  6. Bring to a full boil, and stir in the cornstarch mixture. Continue stirring until the soup begins to thicken, about 5 minutes.
  7. Remove from heat and stir in the egg -- stir continuously until it looks like egg drop soup.
  8. Ladle into bowls and top with additional nori and sriracha if desired.
  9. Enjoy!