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Good Mood Food With Rhea Kukreja

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Ever since she could hold a spoon, Rhea Kukreja has dreamt of becoming a chef and a cookbook author. Raised in a big Indian foodie family that eats, sleeps, and dreams about food, as well as having lived in multi-cultural and food-centric cities like Mumbai and Vancouver, she is now fully-equipped to become the formidable food warrior needed to conquer her current home – Dubai. Here, she shares two recipes for simple treats that your kids will love!

Homemade Nutella

Who doesn’t love Nutella? In fact, what’s there not to love! Nutella is a perfect combination of nuts and chocolate turned into a buttery spread that can take your breakfast or dessert to a new heavenly level. Back in the day, when I was not very conscious about what was going in my mouth, I used to mindlessly eat spoons full of Nutella every other day. It was only until a few years back that I consciously started cutting down sugar from my diet, meaning that Nutella was out of my life for a very long time. However, I always emphasise the fact that one must find a healthy alternate rather than completely giving up on a favourite treat. With this in mind, I came up with this very simple recipe for homemade sugar free Nutella that is better for chidren.

Prep time:   5 mins

Cook time:  10 mins

Total time:   15 mins

Ingredients

200 grams roasted hazelnuts
3 tablespoons raw cocoa powder 
2-4 tablespoons coconut oil
½-1 cup almond milk (or any other nut milk)
4-5 tablespoons agave syrup
1 tablespoon vanilla essence
A pinch of salt

Directions

Toast the hazelnuts in a skillet on low to medium heat for 5 to 10 minutes until they start turning brown and fragrant. Nuts tend to burn very easily so make sure they are supervised at all times. Put the toasted nuts in the food processor and blend at high speed. The mixture tends to stick to the sides, which means you will have to scrape it from the sides and start blending again. Add the coconut oil, agave, salt, vanilla essence, raw cocoa powder, and almond milk, and blend again at high speed until the mixture turns into a smooth paste. Press the mixture through a strainer to remove any chunks, or you can just avoid this step if you like your spread chunky (I kept mine chunky). Let the mixture cool down and store it in an airtight glass jar. The mixture tends to thicken once cool, but it is yet spreadable. Enjoy!


Chocolate Blueberry Smoothie

We are all quite aware of the importance of fruit, but for some reason our kids find it hard to believe or understand. This recipe is written for our little picky eaters who drive their mummies nuts and run away at the sight of an apple or a banana. Now, did I mention this recipe has chocolate? Ooooh! There, caught your attention. This smoothie has chocolate, bananas, and also some blueberries, but I promise it is just going to taste like a chocolate blueberry ice cream. If you don’t believe me, try it.

Prep time:   5 mins

Cook time:  10 mins 

Total time:   15 mins

Servings: 2

Ingredients 

2 bananas
1 cup blueberries
2 teaspoons of raw cocoa powder
1 tablespoon of oats
2 tablespoons Greek yogurt/ regular yogurt
150ml milk (any nutmilk or cow milk)
1 teaspoon vanilla essence
3 tablespoons of a natural sweetener (honey, agave, maple)

Directions

Combine all the ingredients and process until thick and smooth. Serve immediately.

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