21 March 2014

Can Turmeric Really Whiten Teeth?



Last month I posted 5 ways to whiten your teeth naturally and one of them was turmeric. I must admit I raised my brow the first time I heard that turmeric can whiten teeth because I knew that it stained anything irreversibly.

On the other hand, any article I read claimed how beneficial turmeric was for teeth and oral hygiene. According to research compounds in turmeric have anti-fungal and antibacterial properties and is famous for being a great non-abrasive whitener.

Can Turmeric Really Whiten Teeth?

So, instead of wondering if it really worked or not I decided to try turmeric. I anticipated a yellow mess around the sink but actually it wasn't that bad.

I put a teaspoon of turmeric powder in a small glass bowl (the original recipe calls for 1/2 teaspoon and actually that is quite enough).

Can Turmeric Really Whiten Teeth?

Then I mixed the turmeric with a few drops of water to form a thick paste and put some on my toothbrush, which I knew would get stained.

Can Turmeric Really Whiten Teeth?

And I started brushing as usual. I was expecting a weird taste but it was quite acceptable. I tried to brush thoroughly for about 2 minutes.

After I rinsed my mouth though, I was unpleasantly surprised with the yellow tint on my teeth and gums. I quickly put some baking soda on my toothbrush and continued to brush for a minute more but the yellow was still there.

Then I got some toothpaste on but the yellow persisted. It didn't look like my teeth were very much whiter than before, so I felt disappointed. Anyway, I took the "after" picture and looking at it later I saw that my teeth actually looked cleaner!

Before: 
Can Turmeric Really Whiten Teeth?

After:
Can Turmeric Really Whiten Teeth?

You can see the overall yellow teeth on the gums and teeth but if you look closer at the bases of the teeth, they're much cleaner and whiter than before.

In about 30 minutes the yellow tint had gone away and I could see a difference between "before" and "after". Although the result is not as dramatic as I expected I can see that there is some whitening.

So overall:

Yes, turmeric can whiten teeth though not dramatically.

Have you tried whitening your teeth with natural remedies? Let us know how it went for you in the comments.



19 March 2014

Whole Wheat Apple Muffins



I've been spending much of my time lately baking (because I'm a baking addict but don't tell anyone) and experimenting with tastes and textures. I've been baking so much actually, that I thought of starting a separate Kanelstrand blog to journal my experiments but I doubt I would be able to keep up with both blogs, so I hope you're up for some sweet or salty healthy baking from time to time.

Whole Wheat Apple Muffins


Today, I'm presenting whole wheat apple muffins that are very easy to make. I found the recipe on The Goodie Plate a couple of hours before a friend was about to come on a visit and so I set off preparing them.

Whole Wheat Apple Muffins

In any other situation I would have tried to turn them into vegan whole wheat muffins but this time I decided to stick to the original recipe. Well, sticking to one is very figurative in my case because I never am able to... but I guess it's the same with you if you love to bake and add your personal touch.

Whole Wheat Apple Muffins

So here goes the recipe with slight adjustments:

Whole Wheat Apple Muffins
makes 12 muffins

Ingredients:

Batter:

2 cups whole wheat flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup melted butter
1 cup plain yogurt
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup dark brown sugar
1 large egg
2 apples, diced

To sprinkle:
2 tbsp brown sugar
1 tbsp soft butter
1 tsp cocoa powder
2 tbsp diced walnuts

1. In a large bowl beat the egg with the granulated and the brown sugar.

2. Add the melted butter and mix well.

3. Add the baking soda to the yogurt and add the mixture to the egg.

4. In another bowl combine the flour, salt and baking powder, then add to the wet mixture. Mix just until the flour gets incorporated. Do not over mix.

5. Add the diced apples to the batter and mix until you incorporate them.

6. Oil your muffin tin and pour the batter.

7. To make the sprinkle just mix all the ingredients and sprinkle on top before baking.

8. Bake at 350° F (180° C) for about 30 min until they become golden brown and an inserted  wooden skewer comes out clean.

Remove them from the hot tin and place them on a plate. Let them cool for 5 minutes and enjoy!

Whole Wheat Apple Muffins


What's your favorite apple muffin recipe?



13 March 2014

Onion and Olives Vegan Bread Rolls



I only recently discovered onion in bread and I kid you not, every time I incorporate it in a recipe, it's a mind-blowing success.

Onion and Olives Vegan Bread Rolls

So, when last night I took a dozen of these bread rolls to a friend's party, everyone quickly forgot their reasons for being on a diet and the tiny fluffy rolls were the first to disappear from the table.

Onion and Olives Vegan Bread Rolls

For this recipe I use equal parts whole wheat and white flour but if you prefer you can make it only with white flour of course.

Onion and Olives Vegan Bread Rolls
makes 8 medium size or 16 small size rolls

Ingredients

Dough:
  • 250 g whole wheat flour
  • 250 g white flour
  • 250 ml lukewarm water
  • dry yeast (for 500 g flour)
  • 2 tsp sugar
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 2 tbsp olive oil

Additions:
  • 1 large onion, finely diced
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1/2 cup diced black olives
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • cumin seeds for decoration

1. Place the yeast, sugar and 100 ml lukewarm water in a bowl and mix with a wooden spoon. Let rise for about 15 minutes.

2. Sauté the onions in olive oil until golden brown and add a pinch of salt. Let cool.

3. In a medium-sized bowl combine both flours, oregano and salt.

4. In a large bowl pour the yeast mixture, the rest of the water and 1 tbsp olive oil.

5. Carefully start adding the flour and mix with a wooden spoon.

6. Stir in onion, olives and remaining flour (a bit at a time) until a soft dough forms.

7. On a floured surface, knead dough until smooth and elastic (about 10 minutes) adding more flour to prevent sticking.

8. Clean and lightly oil your mixing bowl and put the dough back into it. Cover with a damp tea towel or lightly oiled cling film and set it aside to prove. This gives the yeast time to work. Let prove for about 1 - 1.5 hr or the dough is double in size.

9. Divide dough into 8/16 equal pieces and form balls.

10. Place rolls on prepared baking sheet, sprinkle with cumin seeds and cover with damp towel.


11. Allow 1 hour for rolls to double in size.

12. Preheat oven to 180°C.

13. Bake until golden brown, about 30 minutes.

And that's it. Can you smell them already?

What is your favorite bread rolls recipe? Share it in the comments for everyone to try.