Strawberriiiiies

It seems like we skipped spring and went straight to summer.  Today was in the high 80s, but that’s how Georgia does it eh?  I’m not complaining, I absolutely loooooove the warm weather.  Nothing stopping me from being outside.  Easter was lovely spent at Callaway Gardens.  I need to go back when their organic veggie garden is open for business!

Strawberries are in season and cheeeeap!  Right now I’m sipping on a strawberry smoothie and it would be morally wrong not to share.  It’s pretty simple :

1 cup water

1 overflowing cup frozen strawberries

1 tablespoon chia seeds (optional)

1 tablespoon agave or honey OR 1/2 teaspoon stevia

A splash of natural vanilla extract

Blend everything together and BAM: springtime in your mouth.  You could of course use raw nut milk for a creamier, richer, more decadent shake.

I vow to try this smoothie by http://www.rawfamily.com/recipes.htm someday simply because of the awesome name.  I want a party in my mouth….who doesn’t?  Really?

Party in Your Mouth Green Smoothie

Sergei Boutenko
1 small pineapple, cored
1 large mango, peeled
½ head romaine lettuce
½ inch fresh ginger root
Yields 2 quarts

Lunch was simple cabbage and carrots.  Kind of like a cole-slaw.  As simple as it sounds I’ve been loooovin it lately.  I love tart so throwing some Apple Cider Vinegar on it makes it just right for me.

Dinner?  This wonderful raw lasagna recipe I found on http://goneraw.com/node/4974 by elizabethh.  I’ll write out the recipe since I messed with it a bit.  I have a beautiful picture I took of it, but can’t get it on here right now.

Raw “Lasagna”:  

1 1/2 cups cashews, soaked at least 1 hour

1 1/2 tablespoons lemon juice

3 teaspoons nutritional yeast

1/2 teaspoon celtic sea salt

1/2 teaspoon fresh black pepper

1 teaspoon fresh finely chopped basil

1/2 teaspoon of fresh minced garlic

1 long and thick zucchini , peeled, and sliced into thin, wide strips with a peeler or mandoline

2 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil

1 dash celtic salt

portabella mushroom caps, sliced into thin, wide and long slices

1 big tomato, sliced into thin, wide slices (make sure it’s a juicy one)

1 cup spinach spinach, chopped

What to do:

Whirl the cashews, lemon juice, yeast, salt, pepper, basil, and garlic all together in a blender or food processor.  You won’t it to be pretty smooth, but it’s ok if it has some cashew chunks to give it more of a ricotta texture.

Rub the olive oil into the zucchini slices. Set aside.

Rub the leftover olive oil into the mushrooms and spinach.  You can add additional sea salt if you like.

Create layers: Zucchini, cheese, tomatoes, mushrooms, spinach.  Repeat until you’ve used everything.

Dehydrate at 130 for an hour.  Don’t leave it at 130 longer for an hour as this would cause the food to actually reach that temperature and defeat the entire purpose of eating it raw in order to keep the enzymes.  After an hour at 130 reduce to 110 for 30-1 hour.

If I didn’t have a dehydrator I would definitely consider making this by wrapping Aluminum foil on top and setting it outside.  Sounds crazy but I think it’s hot enough.  : D

I’m going to make this for my raw potluck, as well as some other goodies like raw samoas.  I also have to share my raw chocolate recipe!  If you’re lucky!

Off to conquer the night,

Renee



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Omega 3’s

I’m so excited today, I got flyers printed out for the first raw food potluck I’m holding! It’s going to be great to get to share my passion with other people in the area. I was reminded of the passion people have for raw food while working at the health food store the other day. A woman came in from out of state. She had already been in town for several days. She explained to me she didn’t know our store existed and so she had been living on lifeless food for the last week. When I pointed out her favorite raw snack her eyes lit up and she thanked me. Then, when she spotted the Raw Kombucha in our fridge she began to jump up and down and dance about with more enthusiasm than a kid at their birthday party. It was great to experience someone else’s joy over healthful foods.
So about one of my favorite subjects: Chia Seeds! Yes, the same seeds from chia pets (Chi-Chi-Chiaaaa!). These little seeds contain an important essential fatty acid- omega-3. EFA’s are important for heart health, skin health, immune health…basically they’re a big deal for your body. It seems the most popular form of getting omega-3 is from fish oils. However, chia seeds provide a raw source of the important omega-3 ALA. They are also high in fiber, protein, and low in fat. They provide iron and magnesium. They are virtually tasteless and are great to add to smoothies, raw cookies, or over salad. Unlike flax seeds chia seed’s good fat is on the outside, so they become gelly if soaked in liquid. Doing this forms a sort of chia pudding. Try this Chocolate Chia Shake:
Ingredients:
1/4 cup water
2 tablespoons chia seeds
1/2 tablespoon raw cacao powder (or 1 tablespoon depending on the chocolate power you want to unleash)
1 cup ice
Raw sweetener to taste (agave, date syrup, honey, etc. I used a 1/2 tsp stevia.)

Preparation:
Let the chia seeds and water get to know each other by letting them sit in your blender for a few minutes while you get everything else together. This will make a gelly consistency. Throw everything in the blender and blend for a minute or so. You might want to add more water to get everything going. If you want it really chocolaty add more cacao powder. Enjoy!
*You could always use raw nut milk in place of the water, that would be double yum!!!

You can make a tapioca like pudding by covering two tablespoons of chia seeds in raw nut milk. Allow them to sit for a while. Add in a raw sweetener such as agave syrup. You can top with fruits such as berries, nuts, or whatever you like!
Enjoy today!
Renee

A great documentary

Many people have now seen Super Size Me.  It’s a documentary that exposes how crappy fast food is for us and what horrible things it’s doing to our bodies.  Super Size Me is great for telling us what NOT to do.  I just watched Food Matters-.  It features many leading Doctors, nutritionists, and experts advising us on what we SHOULD be doing.  It goes into depth about why many doctors don’t focus on nutrition and the profits to be made from NOT curing cancer.  If these two films don’t make you want to change at least some of your diet, I don’t know what will.  You can purchase Food Matters athttp://www.foodmatters.tv/_webapp/Movie_Store Both films are availalbe for rent at http://www.netflix.com/

I’ve been eating “mostly” raw for about five months now.  My diet consists of uncooked fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, the occasional raw food bar, and sometimes raw sushi.  So, because of the sushi, I am NOT 100% vegan.  While some people go mostly vegetarian to “save the planet” I easily admit my motives are much more selfish.  I want to live the best, longest, and healthiest life possible.  I decided to give the raw food diet a try after experiencing the passion of a friend who has been mostly raw for several years.  She brought me delicious gourmet raw food and always had some new recipe to share.  After seeing her enthusiasm I began researching the raw food diet.  Since I’m in school to be a nutritionist my main concerns were avoiding any deficiencies.  I had questions like:  How is raw food better than cooked food?  How will I get enough protein?  How will I get B-12?  How will I get iron?  How will I get omega-3 fatty acids?  And the BIGGEST question of all (drum roll please)- Won’t I feel deprived and bored with only raw food?????

I’ll posts the answers to these basic questions daily.  For right now the answer to the last question is NO.  The easy solution is to keep a lot of variety available to yourself.  Try different fruits and rotate different vegetables every week.  Make raw gourmet recipes if you like to cook.  They’re are so many raw food snacks and food bars now available- even chocolate!  A great website is  http://rawfoodnaturals.com/ They have all sorts of delicious goodies to help you make the transition to eating raw.

First tip:  Try just making breakfast raw.  If you don’t already eat breakfast…great!  You’ll having nothing to miss and only something to gain.  Have an apple or other piece of fruit on your way to work.  Or graduate to a DELICIOUS green smoothie.  I enjoy one almost every day.  Don’t be afraid of the greens-I was.  After adding the fruit you can’t taste it.  Don’t be afraid of the color either.  You can be brave. ; )  Be a warrior of chance and give it a try.  Here’s the recipe- all you need is a basic blender.

1 cup of water

1 cup of spinach or kale (or other green, you just don’t want it to be too strong)

1 piece of fruit such as apple, pear, peach, or banana

1 other piece of fruit

1 handful of frozen fruit- I like strawberries, blueberries, or blackberries

2 tablespoons chia seeds

Raw sweetener- optional

Directions:

Chop up the raw fruit.  Throw everything in the blender.  Puree on high speed for about 40-60 seconds.  ENJOY!!!

You don’t have to use chia seeds if you don’t have them available.  Just try the basic recipe first.

I’m off to write two essays!  Yippee!  Enjoy your day!

~Renee~