After what has undoubtedly been the longest month of my life, I know one thing for sure… I need a stiff drink! Who’s with me?! Each March, I eagerly await Spring Equinox and typically celebrate its arrival with the publication of a fresh, seasonally inspired cocktail — but March 2020’s events really threw my editorial calendar for a loop. Although this recipe is publishing a bit later than I had originally intended, I can assure you it’s been tested to perfection — in fact, there was rarely an evening that passed this month when I didn’t find myself shaking up a Honeyed Saskatoon Cherry Gimlet (if you follow along with my Instagram Stories, you can attest to this!). This cocktail highlights Eau Claire Distillery’s recently re-released Saskatoon Honey Gin — and I’ve teamed up with them give away a full sized bottle (along with a few other goodies!) to one of my Canadian friends to help lift your spirits and keep your home bars stocked!
Gin lovers, I’m thrilled to share my Honeyed Saskatoon Cherry Gimlet recipe with you today — a refreshingly spirited, 4 ingredient spring cocktail inspired by doing the best you can with what you have, where you are. The best part? If you have a well-stocked bar, you likely already have all of the ingredients on hand (and if not, I’ve included links to where you can purchase them to help support local businesses during this challenging time)! This simple but perfectly balanced craft cocktail combines Saskatoon Honey Gin with Honey Simple Syrup, cherry bitters and freshly squeezed lime juice shaken over ice — and can be prepared with ease by home bar beginners and skilled mixologists alike. Bring the cocktail bar to the comfort of your own home this spring with my Honeyed Saskatoon Cherry Gimlet — a quintessentially Albertan twist on a classic gin cocktail! Cheers, friends — and best of luck to those entering the giveaway!
Saskatoon berry season is just around the corner — and I’m back today with a new, citrus infused banana bread recipe to celebrate! If you’ve been with me since last summer, you’ll know I absolutely adore saskatoons and look forward to picking buckets full each summer. So, it will come as no surprise that I’ve actually been testing this recipe since late winter with our stash of frozen saskatoons. My Gluten Free Saskatoon Citrus Banana Bread recipe is the result of cleaning out our freezer and fruit bowls one snowy, frigid winter day and incorporating whatever ingredients we had on hand — which always seems to yield the most delicious RECIPES in the JustineCelina kitchen!
My Gluten Free Saskatoon Citrus Banana Bread is free of dairy, gluten and refined sugar and full of healthier, natural substitutions — perfect for those of us with food allergies, intolerances or sensitivities. An inspired melange of bananas, saskatoons and fresh orange and lemon juices combine with plant-based baking staples of coconut, maple and just a splash of bourbon (it’s my newest baking secret ingredient!) to create a bright, nourishing banana bread combining the best of summer and winter with a cheerful, citrusy twist! It makes for a fantastic breakfast, snack or clean dessert anytime you’re craving a berry-forward banana bread, year round. If you have an abundance of seasonal berries and a freezer full of bananas on hands, it’s time get them defrosting, pour yourself a cup of coffee, haul out your mixing bowls and throw on your apron — this recipe is for you! I’ve also included baking instructions for a muffin variation, if you prefer.
Welcome back for another seasonally inspired RECIPE, beautiful people! I’m currently typing to you from my impromptu outdoor office at my childhood home in rural Alberta on this gorgeous August afternoon. The bees are buzzing, the butterflies are fluttering and the sweet scents of summer crops are lingering on the country air — it’s the ideal setting to publish my Summer Bounty Salad with Saskatoon Cider Vinaigrette, don’t you think? If you’ve been reading JustineCelina since last summer you may remember the delicious, clean Wild Saskatoon Berry Crumble I came up with after a friend let us forage their farm to take advantage of the plentiful crop. It was saskatoon overload (in the best way possible!) so I took the opportunity to work on a few more saskatoon themed recipes — but because of my intensive testing process I wasn’t able to publish them before the season ended. Excited to bring those recipes to the blog this summer, we headed south in search of fleeting saskatoons and canola — and we ended up finding a beautiful field of canola (annual photos coming soon!) with wild saskatoon bushes growing alongside it. Honestly, what are the chances?!
My Summer Bounty Salad with Saskatoon Cider Vinaigrette is inspired by the abundant seasonal produce and herbs available at our local markets (and in the wild!) at the height of summer! This colourful, local, ultra fresh salad can be on your table in 15 minutes and is brimming with incredible, heart-healthy, antioxidant-rich superfoods and nutrients. Straight from our Alberta farms to your table, a vitamin-infused bed of baby spinach and arugula showcases a striking mosaic of freshly picked saskatoon berries, garden peas, shredded golden beets, crisp radishes, fresh mint, sunflower seeds and scallions — dressed with a punchy Saskatoon Cider Vinaigrette celebrating Alberta’s favorite berry. Enjoy this feel good salad as a light, plant based entrée whenever you’re in the mood for something quick and nutritious, or as a beautiful accompaniment to grilled fish (it’s great with with trout or salmon), meat or tofu!
Happy Monday, everyone! How was your weekend? If you’ve been following along with my Insta Stories lately you likely caught a glimpse of what my weekend looked like, including my very first saskatoon picking adventure! An old friend of mine invited us to forage their family farm near Carseland, Alberta where the saskatoons are flourishing — it’s the best crop they’ve ever had. I spent Saturday evening strolling through saskatoon tree lined paths with my Mom and little sister — bucket in one berry stained hand and camera in the other (now that’s my kind of girls night!). It was a gorgeous evening and we came away with overflowing buckets, happy hearts and about 8 pounds of berries!
Enjoy the bounty of our beautiful Canadian prairies with my Wild Saskatoon Berry Crumble — a simple, 9 ingredient recipe with a wholesome, plant based spin. It’s free of dairy, gluten and refined sugar — and bursting with decadent berry flavour! Freshly picked saskatoons are bathed in bright lemon juice then naturally sweetened with rich, caramel laden coconut sugar and sprinkled with a hearty topping including quick oats, homemade oat flour, more coconut sugar, Himalayan pink salt, cinnamon, chopped almonds and coconut oil. This vibrant, crowd pleasing dessert that accommodates food allergies and sensitivities without compromising those classic crumble characteristics we all know and love (I promise, no one will know it’s a ‘free from’ dessert!). It’s a no fuss summer dessert that’s ideal for entertaining and can be on your table in 45 minutes!
Chocoholics, this recipe’s for you! I’ve actually had these Raw Red Velvet Vegan Brownies in development since last spring and am so thrilled to finally share it here at JustineCelina. With everything happening regarding ingredient accessibility due to COVID-19, I rejigged my editorial recipe calendar to prioritize recipes I already had in development made with pantry staples, sturdy produce and simple ingredients — and I knew I wanted to push this one to the top of the list for publication! While I wouldn’t normally publish a more indulgent recipe like this as we head into summer, lately I find myself looking for simple ways to indulge my cravings at home — and these insanely delicious brownies have definitely satisfied my sweet tooth during quarantine! Sometimes, you just need a brownie — am I right?!
I believe you can treat yourself and nourish yourself at the same time — and my Raw Red Velvet Vegan Brownies are a perfect example of that philosophy. They come together with just 8 simple, plant-based, antioxidant packed, anti aging, brain and immune boosting ingredients (yes, including beets!) — and they’re truly one of the most decadent brownies I’ve ever tasted. These easy, no-bake brownies are earthy, fudgy, nutty and brimming with beautiful natural sweetness — plus, they’re free of dairy, gluten and refined sugar. If you’re looking for a fuss-free, fresh, veggie-centric twist on the traditional brownie that comes together in less than half an hour, you’ve come to the right place! The best part? If you have a well-stocked pantry and a beet or two on hand, you can probably make these delicious vegan brownies right now! Who’s ready to whip up some raw, spring-inspired treats?
Happy Saturday, friends. How’s everyone doing? These are certainly strange and uncertain times. Never in my wildest dreams did I imagine blogging about this topic, under these circumstances! But like many of you, I’ve been reflecting on how I can best serve my community in this time of need — and its been so heartening reading stories of individuals and businesses stepping up to care for one another. I’ve always taken great comfort in preparing nourishing meals for myself, my family and my friends — and that extends to all of you! In light of recent world events and the different realities we’re all currently facing in this unprecedented situation, this week I focused on what I could do here at JustineCelina to help. As we spend more time in our homes over the next few weeks (or months) and adapt to a new normal, we’ll inevitably be cooking and eating more meals at home — something I’m very passionate about. So, I rescheduled the pretty cocktail I had originally slated to publish on Spring Equinox (which is now live!) to bring you 28 Plant Based Recipes Made With Pantry Staples, Frozen Food and Sturdy Produce — the ultimate resource in feeding yourself and your family well, and economically, during this challenging time.
I’ve scoured my virtual recipe box to compile 28 extensively tested, plant-based, inexpensive, easy to prepare, immune boosting recipes from breakfast through dinner (with snacks in-between!). Each of these recipes are free of dairy, gluten and refined sugar, but many also yield large batches — which are perfect for families, meal prep or freezing to ensure you have nutrient dense meal options on hand. I’ve always been one to keep a well-stocked kitchen — the majority of my recipes focus on inexpensive but versatile, plant based, pantry, freezer and fridge staples that pack a nutritional punch. I’ve also sprinkled this mega-post with ingredient substitution ideas and tips for maximizing the life of your produce, so you can make the most of what you have on hand (this is actually how my most inventive recipes are conceived, food never goes to waste in my kitchen!). We’re all in this together — so if you’re craving some time in the kitchen cooking, baking and recipe making, I’ve got you covered!
Craft cocktail lovers, I’m back today with fall’s first libation in celebration of Autumn Equinox! If you frequent my FOOD or COCKTAIL sections, you’ll know that my most inspired creations are born out of making use of what we have on hand to yield unexpected combinations — and that’s exactly how this recipe came together. Late August is when our annual case of Okanagan peaches arrives and every year I end up going into peach recipe overdrive, while simultaneously eating my body weight in peaches. I’ve explored peaches in smoothies, sangrias and crumbles (that recipe will have to wait until next summer), but this year I had an itch to experiment with my favourite summer stone fruit in a proper cocktail. We’d been grilling up a storm for dinner one Friday evening and Adam had some delicious Smoked Maple Bourbon kicking around — and voila, my Smoked Peach Maple Bourbon Smash came to life right there on our patio!
This summer-meets-autumn sip juxtaposes the essence of juicy late summer fruit with a smoky grilled edge, infused with spicy autumnal warmth to create the ultimate transitional cocktail that’s equal parts sweet ‘n spicy. If you still haven’t had your fill of late summer peaches, get your grill on and imbibe this simple but sassy cocktail sure to impress both bourbon lovers and bourbon skeptics (believe it or not, I was the latter prior to this cocktail!). As always, my Smoked Peach Maple Bourbon Smash is free of dairy, gluten and refined sugar — and brimming with better-for-you ingredients, because I believe in balance in all areas of life. Grilled Okanagan peaches, Smoked Maple Bourbon, 100% pure Canadian maple syrup, fresh thyme, spicy ginger beer, fresh lemon juice, a splash of soda water and a dash of bitters are shaken to perfection and served over ice in this quintessentially September libation!