I’VE NEVER ENDORSED ALCOHOL, UNTIL NOW

For no amount of money have you ever seen me endorse alcohol. They did not pay me to do this. I am proud to be associated with the owners of a Black Owned Liquor company. I love to see my people do great things. I am inspired watching people I love win! Me spreading the world to you about this company came easy for a few reasons. 

1 The product is Phenomenal. 

2. I truly believe in it.

3. It’s time for a economical shift: we need to support our own businesses.

Legendaire Distilled Spirits LLC is headquartered in Houston, TX. Legendaire is quickly becoming a household name with its popular Legendaire Peach Tea Rum. Legendaire Peach Tea Rum combines two unique aromas creating a very smooth Rum with natural flavor. The blend of peach, tea, and rum has created an amazing flavor alcoholic beverage consumers will enjoy. Legendaire Peach Tea Rum is a versatile drink, enjoyable on the beach, family functions, corporate event, and many more!

Our award-winning taste, unlike any other, will awaken your spirit of discovery, and reveal to you a rare level of quality in the world of rum.

Please Drink Responsibly! https://www.legendairespirits.com

BANANA BREAD IN A CUP

My 6-year-old gets tired of eating the same things over and over again for breakfast. My mom always tells me I need to stop asking my family what they want and just cook. I ask because I need ideas myself. Being creative about meals is not usually the first thing on my priority list because I have a lot of other things going on too. So, cooking 3 meals a day isn’t my favorite thing to do, but I must get it done. 

Rhythm takes great pride in making her own food from time to time. This morning she said, “Mom, can I make myself that banana bread in a cup? I haven’t had that in a long time.” “Sure,” I told her. She was right, it was way before Covid started and that was a good year ago. It’s pretty cool outside this morning, so it’s a great day to curl up and eat breakfast with a nice, warm cup.

It’s important for me to always include fruit in her meals and this is a quick and easy way to know she’s getting some fresh ingredients. Getting her in the kitchen working with her hands is not just good for her motor skills, but it’s also great for homeschool math and science. School shouldn’t be just about worksheets; it should be about real-life survival skills. Things they will actually use outside the classroom. Measuring is a great way for her to see firsthand the fruits of doing something right and what happens if you do it wrong (cause and effect). She learns to take her time, read the recipes, and be careful not to spill anything. She gets to be creative and practice her problem-solving skills. Honestly, this recipe is also good if you live alone and aren’t into leftovers!

HAPPY EATING!

In a mug you simply put in:

2 tbsp flour (Of your choice, could be coconut flour)

1/2 tsp Baking powder

1 tbsp of Maple Syrup

1/2 tbs Milk

Optional

* 1/2 tsp of brown sugar (Extra Sweet)

* After it’s done a splash of cinnamon 

Then, stirring it together is her favorite part. After it’s all combined and looking like cake mix, simply stick it in the microwave for a minute and thirty seconds. (Depending on how your microwave cooks) 

My daughter doesn’t like nuts or cinnamon, so I just sliced a few pieces of banana for the top. Be creative and make it your own.

WATER IS THE MOST IMPORTANT THING YOU CAN DO FOR YOUR BODY!

Water is the true fountain of youth! Most overweight people are overweight simply because they are not drinking enough water! Most people with skin issues have it because they are not drinking enough water!

After having my daughter, my doctor asked me if I wanted to drop my baby weight fast. “Of course,” I told him! Then, he told me to drink 16 ounces of water on an empty stomach. It will help the body flush out toxins and alkalize my body. Layman’s terms: it’s gonna make you shit. According to Ayurvedic medicine, drinking water right after waking up has pretty amazing health advantages. It cleanses the kidneys and expels accumulated toxins, enhances the metabolism, improves the oxygen flow and supports the health of the lymphatic system.

Do you wake up in the middle of the night thirsty?

At night, your body repairs itself and removes toxins. This is why some people sweat more at night than others. Your body is casting away all the bad stuff. So, it’s your body’s way of begging you for proper hydration, so your cells can do their jobs. Most likely, you didn’t drink enough water during the day.

Did you know if you don’t drink enough water it can alter your mood as well? Dehydration causes confusion, anxiety and fatigue.

HOW DO I STAY LOOKING SO YOUNG?

I get asked a lot about how do I stay looking so young? What products do I use on my skin? Youth is from the inside out! A lot of you don’t know I am a certified nutritionist. Good nutrition is an important part of leading a healthy lifestyle. Combined with physical activity, your diet can help you to reach and maintain a healthy weight, reduce your risk of chronic diseases (like heart disease and cancer), and promote your overall health.

Eating a balanced diet is vital for good health and wellbeing. Food provides our bodies with the energy, protein, essential fats, vitamins and minerals to live, grow and function properly. The goal is to keep it natural from the inside out.

Food or medicine

Only a small percentage of Americans (any groupings by age, sex or skin color) actually consume the recommended minimum of five daily servings of fruit and vegetables to maintain health. The National Cancer Institute now suggests nine servings of fresh plant foods per day to reduce health risks, a goal which is not likely to be achieved by a significant percentage of the population, let alone among minority groups in society.

Americans with low intake of folic acid (green leafy vegetables) have higher homocysteine levels. Homocysteine is an undesirable protein in the blood circulation, which is linked with cardiovascular disease and brain dementia. It is amazing when they estimate the impact of poor nutrition upon Blacks. It is encouraging to realize that nutritional strategies could be employed to eradicate or reduce common health risks in family of Americans at very little cost.

There is a connection to skin color, nutrition and disease, which is exemplified by role of vitamin D, the “sunshine vitamin,” among blacks. Dark melanin skin pigment slows the natural production of vitamin D in the skin upon exposure to the sun. Blacks may require as much as ten times more sun exposure to produce the same vitamin D as Caucasians. Shortages of vitamin D are causally linked to high blood pressure, stroke, cancer (colon, breast, prostate, ovarian, lymphoma), Crohn’s disease, immune problems and osteoporosis, health problems that are common in the black community.

There are claims that “A low intake of dairy food nutrients, such as calcium, potassium, and magnesium, may contribute to the high risk of hypertension seen in African Americans.” Milk is a very poor source of magnesium and potassium. Blacks notoriously exhibit intolerance to milk products. In one study abnormal lactose tolerance was found among 81% of Blacks and only 12% of Whites. This explains our avoidances of dairy.

It is obvious Blacks are genetically different (not inferior) and due to their melanin skin pigmentation exhibit special health and nutritional needs that are not being adequately addressed by the medical community nor the food industry.

Here at KIAN SPA, we understand nutrition is not one size fits all. We go the extra mile to make ensure our clients are receiving individualized consultations so they can meet their personal nutrition goals.

To reach out for a nutrition consultation you can book though 

www.TherealCherie.com

Or www.Kian4lifespa.com 

MAKE S’MORES OUTSIDE

Making s’mores outside is always more exciting than doing it over the stove in the kitchen. For some reason, my daughter’s excitement builds when we take it outdoors. I’m not much of the camping type, (I will just be honest, I prefer hotels.) so the closest we get is the backyard at night.

Christmas traditions are what my daughter gets most excited about around the holidays. Even more than presents, she wants her family around to do the things she remembers us doing the year before. Her favorite candy bar is a Hershey’s. (I rub it in to her father that it is her Pennsylvanian roots coming out.)

I pull out a few of our favorite Christmas storybooks and read them while everyone makes S’mores. We spend a few hours outside laughing and talking and just enjoying each other’s company.

S’mores pair perfectly with the Cherie’s Crockpot Hot Chocolate recipe, which was posted in October.

1 little fun fact is marshmallows date back to ancient Egypt, they were originally made out of the marsh mellow plant!

This tray I purchased from Etsy store ReclaimandRefurbish for $165.

IT’S TEMBLEQUE TIME

One of my favorite childhood memories is when my Tia use to make Tembleque around the holidays. Tembleque is a traditional Puerto Rican coconut dessert. It gets its name from the Spanish word “tembla,” which means to shake. So, you know my family has jokes. As we would get ready to eat dessert, the only way we would get it is if… “Yup,” we would shake. For some reason we all thought it was funny, so of course as an adult I have the same sick sense of humor. I make the kids dance before they get a serving.

Who doesn’t love pudding? It’s a pudding that is thickened with cornstarch that results in a slightly firm pudding with a custard texture that has a little jiggle for your wiggle. If you have never had it, you need to try it. Attached is my Tia’s recipe.

Ingredients

4 cups coconut milk

1/2 cup of cornstarch

2/3 cup of sugar

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 tablespoon Grand Marnier

Ground cinnamon

Instructions

  1. Wet the inside of six 4-oz ramekin molds, set aside.
  • In medium saucepan combine all ingredients except cinnamon and whisk until well combined. Place over medium-high heat. Cook, stirring constantly until mixture comes to a slow boil and is smooth and thick, about 5 minutes.
  • Pour the pudding into prepared molds. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until firm, at least 3 hours or overnight.
  • Enjoy in the ramekin or to unmold, run a thin knife around edge. Invert mold onto serving plate. Sprinkle with cinnamon.

Remember to Shake, Shake, Shake!

THERE’S NOTHING BETTER TO EAT WHEN IT’S COLD OUTSIDE THAN A BIG BOWL OF SANCOCHO.

When the temperatures drop below 25°, I’m looking for comfort food. (You can make this recipe at whatever temperature feels cold to you.) Something warm, something satisfying and something with humble roots. I’m not a huge soup person but I love a bowl of Sancocho. Maybe because it reminds me of a simpler time. Maybe because it reminds me of my friend, Michelle. Michelle and I learned how to make this recipe together.

It can be compared to beef stew. Sancocho means stewing in the heat. I don’t have a lot of patience and when I’m hungry, I wanna eat soon. My Tia’s recipe is my favorite.

Tia said growing up they didn’t have a lot of money and my grandfather grew all their vegetables, so the only thing they had to buy at the store was the meat. So, this was a cheap way to keep everyone’s belly full because they always had root vegetables on hand.

Ingredients

3 to 4 tablespoons of Sofrito (I cheat and use Sofrito Goya but will teach you later how to make it from scratch.)

2 tablespoons of olive oil

5 garlic cloves, minced

1 1/2 pounds of top round beef, cubed into 1-inch pieces

1/3 cup yellow onions, chopped

1/3 cup green pepper, chopped

5 sprigs of cilantro, chopped *Optional, my mom doesn’t like it.

1 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

4 tomatoes

Beef stock if you have it if not, use water and add a little butter

1 green plantain, peeled and slice into 1-inch pieces

1 yellow plantain, peeled and sliced into 1/2-inch pieces

1 medium sweet potato, diced into 1-inch pieces

1 medium yuca

1/2 pound of butternut squash, peeled and cubed into 1-inch pieces

3 medium new potatoes, peeled and quartered

2 ears of yellow corn, cleaned and sliced into 6 parts each

Directions

                *Marinate beef in sofrito overnight in the refrigerator*

  1. In a preheated Dutch oven or heavy pot over low-to-medium heat, combine olive oil, garlic, beef cubes, and onions, stir until beef is brown on all sides and onions begin to caramelize.
  2. Then add in the tomatoes and cook down.
  3. Add in chopped pepper, cilantro, salt, pepper, and 1 quart of beef stock. Cook down until stock is reduced by half, about 20 minutes.
  4. Stir beef, then add all the remaining vegetables and remaining beef stock. Bring to a boil. Lower to a simmer and cover for 30 minutes.
  5. Uncover and simmer for 20 – 30 minutes or until the stock has reduced some and the meat is tender, and the vegetables are soft. Serve hot.

IT’S COQUITO TIME!

As I walked through the grocery store, I got excited when I saw eggnog loaded on the shelves. Not to disrespect my beloved “coquito,” but America likes to compare it to eggnog. In my opinion, coquito is the much better tasting cousin! Coquito is a traditional food that all Puerto Ricans hold close to their hearts. Growing up it is associated with Holidays, Love and Family. Coquito translated means “little coconut”. It is best enjoyed super cold. Here is how we make it in my house. If you are serving children or people who don’t drink, simply leave out the rum.

1 (12 oz) can evaporated milk

1 (14 oz) can sweetened condensed milk

2 cups (1 15 oz can) cream of coconut

1/4 tsp cinnamon

1/8 tsp nutmeg

1 tsp vanilla

**1 1/2 cup white rum (must be white I prefer Bacardi of course)

cinnamon sticks for garnish

I suggest 1 1/2 cups of white rum. If that sounds like too much, start with 1 cup and add more to taste. I like to add just enough rum that it’s prickly on the back of your throat and warms you on the inside. It will be one of the few drinks you’ll have that is cold that warms you up. Just be careful because the flavor of the rum gets stronger the longer the drink “marinates”. LOL. If you have a family like mine, it could be the gift that keeps giving. Abuela once told me that egg yolk came from the white American tradition of eggnog, so some Rican’s have welcomed it into their coquito. I stick to my original roots, so I am part of the NO egg yolk camp! Debate amongst yourself and enjoy.

HOT CHOCOLATE WITH MARSHMALLOWS

Mexico 500 BC, the Mayans were drinking chocolate made from ground up cocoa seeds mixed with water, cornmeal, chili peppers as well as other ingredients. A lot different than the hot chocolate we know today. Until the 19th century, hot chocolate was used medically to treat ailments such as liver and stomach disease. Mexico introduced Europeans to hot chocolate in the New World. 

It’s always awesome for kids to know little fun facts about the world around them. As a homeschool mom, every moment is a teachable moment, even the fun ones. As the weather changes, my daughter loves to drink hot chocolate, sit in front of the fireplace and read books.

Cherie’s Crockpot Hot Chocolate 

Ingredients 

One and a half cups of heavy whipping cream 

One 14 oz can of sweetened condensed milk

6 cups of milk

1 teaspoon of vanilla

2 cups of chocolate chips

* For large parties double the ingredients* 

Instructions 

1. Stir together the whipping cream, milk, vanilla and chocolate chips in your crockpot.

2. Cover and cook on low for about two hours stir occasionally with a whisk until the mixture is hot and the chocolate chips are all melted.

3. Once it’s heated all the way through and the chocolate is fully melted turn the crockpot on the warm setting and stir occasionally before serving.

4. This is my daughter’s favorite part: when you serve them, garnish every individual cup with whip cream or marshmallows maybe even both.

PUMPKIN NICE CREAM

Yes, I am one of those people who looks forward to fall all year long because I like all the seasonal pumpkin treats! While I can see Shawn Harrison (My Wally pop) rolling his eyes at me now out of disgust. He hates pumpkin and I should be ashamed but that fact that he hates it makes me enjoy it just a little more. LOL.

My daughter loves Pumpkin Nice Cream, so I make a big batch and keep extra in the freezer. It only takes like 3 minutes to make, so it’s the perfect last thought dessert.

5-6 frozen bananas

1 15-oz can of organic pumpkin puree (I remove from the can and freeze overnight beforehand)

1/2 tsp pumpkin pie spice

1 tsp of vanilla extra

6 pitted medjool dates (if you want it sweeter, freeze beforehand)

If you do not freeze ingredients beforehand:

Blend the pumpkin, spices, vanilla extract and dates until smooth.

Transfer to a shallow pan and freeze overnight.

If they are already frozen:

Break apart pumpkin mixture and add to the blender/food processor with frozen bananas. Blend until smooth and creamy.

Eat immediately as soft serve, freeze for 2-3 hours for a scoopable ice cream. You can keep leftovers in the freezer for up to 3 days.