Posts Tagged ‘Raw Food Diet’

Leftovers

Just a quick post today to share why I love summer gardening season and the gorgeous raw food creations we can make with fresh food. David’s been working only five minutes away from home this week, which means we get to have lunch together. Yesterday, I made a raw almond mock “tuna” pâté (complete with homegrown lovage instead of celery and the first green pepper of the season), and featured it over freshly picked salad greens, tomatoes, cucumbers, chives, and edible flowers from the garden, along with carrots and beets from a local farm:

July 21 salad

salad two

And today, we had the leftovers, made into something completely different:

leftovers

leftovers with flowers

Bouquet picked this morning, plus nori wraps filled with leftover nut pâté, carrots and another cucumber, and then tree collard wraps filled with nut pâté, avocado, fresh tomato, carrots and cukes. We spread a little umeboshi plum paste on the wraps at lunch for a sweet, tangy, salty pop! No, I did not grow the avocados or almonds in this dish, but yes, we do have a cold hardy avocado tree. One day, those avo’s will be reallllly fresh! Until then, the co-op works well.

Raw food delights all the senses. So grateful for such beauty and bounty!

Pizza Kale Chips

I have no idea why, but yesterday I started craving pizza at the same time I found myself with entirely too much kale on hand. David and I had skipped our planned green smoothies on two occasions, and suddenly we had two huge bunches of kale that needed to be used right away. To make matters trickier, David was headed out of town for two days, leaving just me to devour all that kale all by myself. Some leaves had already begun to turn yellow, so I donated those to the compost pile. I hate to waste produce, but the thought of trying to mow through that much salad didn’t sound great to me. Enter: pizza kale chips!

When you’ve got too much produce on hand and it threatens to go bad before you can use it up, fermenting or dehydrating can save your food while adding unusual flavor and texture twists. I ferment things all the time, but even after nearly 8 years of high or 100% raw eating, I had never made my own kale chips. A Lazy Raw Foodist, indeed! These turned out to be surprisingly easy, though. Since everyone asks me for recipes, I wrote this one down as I went along:

Pizza Kale Chips

Two large kale bunches, torn into bite sized pieces

Dressing:

1 cup raw cashews
Large fistful of fresh Italian herbs (I used basil, parsley, oregano and sage.)
Five fennel seeds
Juice from one lemon
5-7 soaked sun-dried tomatoes plus leftover soak water equal to 3/4 cup of liquid
One garlic clove plus optional garlic skapes (I had some from the garden. You can use more garlic or powder to taste.)
2 tablespoons Parma Chipotle Cayenne (or nutritional yeast plus chipotle and cayenne to taste)
Celtic Sea salt to taste

1. Blend dressing ingredients.
2. Massage into torn kale (with your hands until kale gets softer and a little broken down).
3. Spread evenly on mesh dehydrator trays with the Teflex sheets on them to start.
4. Dehydrate at 105 degrees for 4-6 hours on Teflex.
5. Remove Teflex.
6. Dehydrate another 1 to 2 hours until completely dry and crispy.
7. Cool, then store in plastic bags or glass jars.

I use an Excalibur Dehydrator. If you have a different type, then your timing may vary. Just remember to keep the temperature below 112 degrees and to check on them every few hours to make sure they dry completely. If you don’t dry them all the way, you will need to eat them in a couple days, or they could mold. If you dry them and vacuum pack them, they could last for months. I put some in ziploc bags and, let’s just say, their longevity won’t be an issue. I’m restraining myself so that David gets some as a treat upon his return from overseas.

Some photos for your reference:

Soak the sundried tomato until soft (10-15 minutes)

Two bunches of kale, torn. Curly works best. This was a mixture of lacinato and curly kale.

Truly Raw Organic Cashews and Chipotle Cayenne Parma

I ordered these truly raw cashews from The Raw Food World. David and I love the flavor of the Chipotle Cayenne Parma, which is basically raw walnuts mixed with nutritional yeast, cayenne and chipotle. You could easily approximate this flavor set on your own, and for this recipe, you wouldn’t need the walnuts in there. They just give it more of a parmesan cheesy texture, but with everything thrown into a Vitamix, the texture obviously changes anyway. 🙂

Kale chips ready to dehydrate on Teflex sheets

A few quick notes:

1) These chips were the best kale chips I’ve ever eaten in my entire life, if I do say myself. (And apparently, I do.) 😉

2) The little bit of fennel seed gives the sauce that pepperoni/sausage pizza flavor, if you happen to crave that sort of thing. (I usually don’t, but it sure hit the spot last night and today!)

3) IMHO, everything tastes best with fresh herbs, but if you don’t have any of those on hand, I am sure you could substitute equivalent flavorings from dried herbs. I grow fresh herbs year round, so I don’t know what the conversion would be. Perhaps a dried Italian Seasoning blend would work best. You might need to add 1/4 cup more water to the mix, too, since those fresh herbs have some moisture in them. The sauce can get quite thick, and you may need the extra water to get it to blend all the way.

4) That’s it! These will have you noshing your way through buckets of leafy greens while satisfying one of the greasiest cravings out there. Enjoy!

Raw Vitality and Longevity

Handpicked inspiration for people looking to raise their vibe, increase energy, normalize weight, grow younger and more intuitive, and enhance beauty from the inside out: I hope you enjoy these short videos with some eternally youthful, energized and healthy raw foodies.

If these got you inspired, but you think it’s a lot of work, then you might enjoy The Lazy Raw Foodist’s Guide. Yes, you can be lazy and still get the benefits of a high raw diet. 🙂

Raw Food Frenzy

My, my, my … it’s a good thing raw and living foods provide so much energy! Sure, they take extra prep time to replicate gourmet yumminess, but they do pay it forward. I’ve had such a busy week and the next weeks and months just keep looking busier. All good, exciting stuff, though!

As I sit here drinking a Reishi Mocha Chaga Hemp Banana Coconut Water smoothie, I’ve got sunflower seeds and pumpkin seeds soaking for late afternoon pâté creations to top salads during tomorrow’s Reiki Master Teacher training lunch break. I’ve got sundried tomatoes soaking in water for blending with homegrown basil and oregano, plus Roma tomatoes to make a raw marinara sauce for our spiralized celeriac. Have you tried celeriac (celery root) noodles? I love them even better than zucchini noodles — slightly crunchy and less watery. We’ve got olives to chop for tapenade, more tomatoes and chives to chop for a cumin tomato tartar topping for, get this … raw, vegan, gluten-free Rosemary Garlic Bread, which is currently tantalizing us in the dehydrator. An afternoon trip to the co-op will bring us some cukes and greens for a side salad, and we’ll top off this Italian raw feast for friends with some Reishi-Chaga-Lucuma-Cacao gelato. Total experiment, but I have high hopes.

Somewhere in there, it will be collard ribboning time, to make a simple side salad of olive oil, lemon juice and Celtic sea salt intended to accompany the soon-to-be-chopped root veggies we’ll throw in the oven towards the end of tomorrow’s RMT class. Non-linear me goofed and booked an evening session after all-day teaching, so I will much appreciate the speedy sustenance. Teaching Reiki always makes me hungry.

Other goodies on our plates or in our fridge?

Last weekend’s channeling host treated us to some of “Caroline’s Handmade” raw flax crackers and sundried tomato cashew dip — possibly the best dip we’ve ever tasted. Yes, it was that good, and no, it’s not technically in our fridge right now. We finished that the following morning. 🙂 We’ve got sprouted, dehydrated buckwheat groats, should the “cereal” craving hit. Our freezer holds some Violet’s Violent End blueberry pie from Shazzie and David Wolfe’s “Naked Chocolate” book. Always a favorite for guests and quick snacks! I gifted my copy to a formerly “cooked” chocoholic, but I’ve made that recipe so often, I have it committed to memory.

After last night’s channeling event, I scarfed an entire bag of Rhythm Superfoods “Zesty Nacho” Kale Chips, followed by our locally made Fizziology Kimchee served on avocados. A yummy return to Earth after all that ethereal stuff. 😉 We’ve also got homemade kefir awaiting frozen strawberries and vanilla stevia for OMG wowness! Perhaps a new favorite, among so much vibrant deliciousness. Of course, none of this would feel complete without fresh green juice, and thank heavens our co-op makes such economical and tasty blends. You can’t really buy produce, juice it and clean up for much less than a freshly prepared (by someone else!) Cucumber-Celery-Parsley or Inner Peace juice. Despite all evidence to the contrary, I remain forever and always, a Lazy Raw Foodist.

Just sharing some days in the life … Cheers and Love!

10/10/10 World Raw Food Day Talk in Madison

I’ve been asked to speak at the World Raw Food Day potluck celebration on 10/10/10 in Madison, WI. The topic of discussion might surprise you 😉 : “Love, Om, Cacao.”

Come join us if you’re in the area. I would love to meet you. There are only 30 spots available, though, so please find out more information and/or RSVP here.

Interview with Chef Mia Dalene (Part 2)

This is Part 2 of an Interview with raw food chef Mia Dalene. For Part 1, please click here.

Raw Food Chef Mia Dalene

Mia is not only a chef and instructor, but also a fellow brain injury survivor and all-around inspirational leader. I love supporting other people who have turned tragedy into triumph, so please check out her links and services below. This portion of the interview addresses two of my favorite topics in the world: the spiritual side of brain injuries and … you guessed it! Raw cacao. 🙂

How did your concept of Self change after your brain injury?

Before I found the nutritional difference with raw vegan cuisine.:

With the injury I switched from Type A to Type B personality in that instant, but I was not aware of what had happened and so was figuring it out as I went along. I found this a painful experience at the time. As well, I was no longer able to do tasks that before the injury were things I defined myself by and had taken my ability to complete them for granted. It was a very difficult time for me as I saw myself as someone that I and others could no longer count on.

It took some time but in the years that have followed, I have come to see my Self as more than the job title, the amount of pay I once commanded, and the number of times I was interrupted during the day to fix problems. (and in 2009 have been experiencing more of the essence of Self.)

I had liked being counted on in those days but I let it define me, along with being a single mother of two rambunctious boys. I defined myself and assigned my value to my abilities to behave in certain ways. With the injuries I could no longer allow my children to climb on me like a human jungle gym and rough house play with them, or allow them to jump into my arms as had been our normal greeting to that point. It wasn’t just a brain injury, my neck, back, and left shoulder were also injured. These injuries affected my children’s concept of what they meant to me as well.

In conversations I would forget their names. Miles, the youngest, caught me and commented, “How can you love me anymore if you forgot my name?” He was 6 at the time of the injury and it made no sense to him or to me, although I did know that I loved him – I was having difficulty conveying it in the terms we had been doing so to this point. It took a year for me to figure out holding him in my arms while I sat down was our new way of expressing affection beyond the words.

His older brother, Tony, was 9 and was able to assist me in caring for his younger brother. I now needed absolute quiet and sometimes the solitude of a dark room (or coat over my head) when I would get neurologically over stimulated. Something my very vocal Miles could not immediately understand. Tony could assist me to get Miles to be quiet during those times in the car when I needed immediate quiet so I could bring myself back down to calm.

During those early years, I often hated my new life and myself for not being able to do the things I once had. It took me some time to adjust and I find myself still in this daily adjustment process. It has helped to release expectations and be open to what is in each moment.

Two things happened that were pivotal points:

1) I read a book, Choosing Joy in the Midst of Chaos, by Dorothy Mae
My choice was to live a joy-filled life and so I decided that even though this tragic thing had occurred, it was still my life and no matter what… I wanted to live that Joy Filled life. So I did.

Not knowing what I could do, I wrote down a list of things I could focus on, keeping this list on a piece of paper in my pocket so I could refer to it often and remember. As I read through it, I would feeling the Love bliss consciousness that comes through me when I do these things. Looking back, I see that I included all my senses in my remembering moments.

I enjoy…
spending time in nature among the plants,
smelling scents of fragrant plants
seeing colorful flowers
feeling the different texture of plants under my feet and on my fingertips,
hearing the stillness
experiencing beauty all around me

2) I started doing some things that I had always wanted to do. One was to learn tap dancing. I soon found that the symptoms of TBI followed me everywhere. I was not able to remember the dance steps … but I did find joy in the movement and the clicking of the taps on the toes of my shoes.

So I reframed my definition of success. In the corporate world, my personal success mantra was “exceeding excellence”. Now, it transmuted to, “if I am enjoying what I am doing in this moment… that is success.” And so my new job became finding joy in each and every moment.

At this point, I was redeemed in my eyes and I became successful again. And my perception of myself shifted toward more positive aspects. My abilities were no longer found in the Doing but in the BE-ing. And I began to see the gift of being different; both amongst people and different from who I was before.

Would you consider your injury a spiritual experience? If so, in what ways?

Yes.

It provided the freedom from focus on doing and into the experience of BE-ing. It allowed (forced) me to slow down and experience the world in a different way- calm and ultimately peaceful.

I was able to see and experience a different definition of who I was. My value came from the simple fact of being alive instead of having to do something, become someone in order to have value; the job title, the amount I received in my paycheck. There is something magical and liberating about living in the flow.

I learned that I can still have a positive impact on society, even with an injured brain and its symptoms. Providing information and teaching skills that others can use to better their lives, health. I am a catalyst for joy- something I wanted to be since I was a child. And definitely making a positive impact in the lives of others.

Please list five things you do or know better now than you did before your injury.

1. Take time to focus on and experience a joy centered life
2. Connect with people around me in real and profound ways
3. BE as opposed to DO
4. Consciously create
5. Type about as fast as a person can talk

What kind of classes and services do you offer, and where do you offer them?

For a listing of our calendar of events:

Meetup.com/Seasonal-Raw-Vegan-Cuisine

SmartRawFood.com (under construction)

DavidHempseed.com (quality Transformational Superfood ingredients)

Where:
1) all around the Puget Sound region of Washington state. I have spoken and food demo’s in Oregon & California as well. I will travel.
2) Online. We are planning some classes online to reach a wider audience. I will have information on that as it unfolds. There will be Live stream online preparing Live food. Showcasing recipes and SmartRaw Food Prep techniques and will be archived for those not able to make it to the live event.

(SmartRaw Food is a way of preparing food that saves money, time and energy. I created these techniques as a response to the myths I was hearing from people that this type of food is expensive and takes too much time)

What: *Recipes *Classes *Products *Quality Ingredients *Lifestyle Coaching & Raw Business Consulting
Some classes we teach include;
dalene’s Certified Raw Food Chef Course

SmartRawFood Prep Course; Phase 1, 2 & 3

I developed SmartRaw food Prep techniques that are efficient with time, money and energy.

Cacao (Raw Chocolate) Party class
Entertaining with seasonal Raw Vegan Cuisine

Transformational Superfoods

Water Wisdom

Live Cuisine Series: Italian, Mexican, Thai, Asian.

I co-teach with my partner, David Hempseed. We have teaching styles and personalities that complement each other. Our students often report that we “make a great team!” While I am more creative and less analytical than before the injury, I find I perform best with assistance from David’s gentle guidance as he assists me with organizing and staying on task.

David and Mia

What’s your favorite thing about living in the Pacific Northwest?

Nature! -The beautiful outdoors.

Cacao or not cacao?

Raw Cacao has the three major minerals that most Americans are lacking; Iron, Magnesium and Chromium.

I definitely Cacao! And make no judgments for those who choose to abstain. While I love raw chocolate, I have noticed a decrease in the amount my body desires lately.

An important note: As with any ingredients, the purer the better. Not all Cacao is equal and so may affect the body differently. As with any ingredients, the better the quality, the better the recipe turns out. My body has a radar for pure vs. adulterated raw cacao. I can tell if it has been tampered with. Some raw cacao companies may cut their ingredients (or get it unknowingly from a supplier who does) – cuts it with Guarana (sp?) or Kola seed powder. All three powders look similar: Guarana, Kola, and Cacao. But each act differently on the body.

**Raw cacao affects the cardiovascular system (not the nervous system) so if you are feeling jittery or anxious after eating what you think is pure raw cacao… it might actually be cut with another substance that affects the nervous system. Also, when cacao is roasted, toasted or otherwise cooked, it will affect the body in adverse ways.

I LOVE raw cacao so much so that I developed several recipes. Many of them are featured in my upcoming ebook, dalene’s Easy Raw Chocolate Recipes. Two examples of what you can expect from the book are Seduction, a chocolate sauce (one bite and you know why this is its name!), and Raw Ecstasy, a chocolate bar.

Seduction has been praised for its contribution to many who report “it helps [them] stay raw.”

My partner, David Hempseed, and I developed a chocolate bar we named, Raw Ecstasy. When we teach people how to make this, we caution, “When you tell people you were at a party and were eating ecstasy, make sure you put the Raw in front of it… we don’t want any misunderstandings here..” usually gets a laugh or two. And then they taste it. Eyes roll to the back of the head. A quiet hush falls over the group as they go inward and enjoy the experience. Raw Ecstasy, our raw chocolate bar.

Recipe for Seduction here

Seduction
Mia Dalene’s chocolate sauce

Ingredients

1 ¼ Cups Agave nectar (I prefer Ultimate brand, clear)
¼ – 3/4 Cup raw Cacao powder (depending on how dark you like it)
2 Tablespoons Coconut oil
1 teaspoon Vanilla (I use non alcohol flavoring)

Preparation

1) Place all ingredients into high speed blender (put agave nectar in first so the cacao doesn’t stick to the blades) and process until silky smooth. It should have a shean to the top of the mixture.

2) Adjust ingredients to taste. *after it settles it may harden slightly. If this happens, simply use a spoon, fork or chopstick and mix vigorously until it becomes viscous.

3) store in glass jar with sealed lid. This will keep out of refrigerator for over 2 months.

**This makes a great quick and tasty gift. Simply pour out into several small decorative jars, attach lid and affix your homemade label.

Tastes great drizzled over everything! For quick chocolate milk; add some to your nutmilk (or dairy) beverage. Even coffee can be transformed.

One woman told me she “takes a teaspoonful every morning, like medicine.”

Enjoy.

(Believe it or not, we still have more to this interview, so stay tuned for the third installment. In the meantime, please check out Mia’s wonderful offerings here and especially here.)

And if you need some extra support on your traumatic brain injury journey, please feel free to check out If I Only Had a Brain Injury. Many Blessings and Much Love to Mia and all of you!

Tips for Tastier Green Smoothies

I’ve been painting Doorway Number 10 all week and will post photos soon. In the meantime, I thought I’d post some quick tips to make green smoothies more interesting. Summer offers wonderful fresh produce, especially greens and fruit — perfect for this little health food staple. If you’re like me, though, you might feel a little tired of green smoothies, even with your farmer’s market stash. I’ve drunk some form of green smoothie on most days for the past five years. Sometimes even varied fruit and greens seem … boring. Even superfoods, fruit and greens … dull.

I realized while talking with some friends about this dilemma that I’ve found easy ways around it with essential oils, teas and unusual flavor combinations. You can dramatically alter your smoothie experience with a little knowledge and experimentation. Here are some of my favorite combos:

Acai-cacao-blueberry-peppermint

Acai tastes like a combination of blueberries and chocolate, so when you add those flavors in with the acai, the flavors really pop! I like to use fresh mint as the green in these smoothies, but I’ve also used Romaine or spinach and just added 3 drops of peppermint essential oil. Adding some cinnamon powder or essential oil brings out even more flavor dimensions in this combo.

cilantro-anise
I am drinking this right now, actually. Many people find cilantro a difficult green to drink, but it chelates Mercury and other heavy metals, so it’s worth the effort. I’ve found that cilantro tastes good with frozen pineapples or frozen mangos, and it tastes good with pretty much anything if you add 3 drops of anise essential oil. Something about the licorice flavor of the anise brings out depths of flavor in the cilantro for a total wow experience. I just have frozen bananas as my base today, along with a hint of acai, anise, and even some maca. Normally, maca-cilantro would taste disgusting as a sweet smoothie, but the anise cuts the flavor and makes it seem complexly sweet. Anise also has a side benefit of helping with bloating or gas that some people experience with too much liquid or poor food combining.

maca-cacao

On its own, maca is not the most smoothie-friendly ingredient because it tastes like radish. Put too much of it in your kale smoothie and you risk a total blech reaction. But maca-combined with cacao creates an almost magical experience.

maca-spirulina-cinnamon

Another example of combining flavors in order to transform the yuck factor into an amazing “yum!”

schizandra berries

These things are totally tart. I can put one, possibly two into a smoothie, but no more unless I’ve made a tea and sweetened it with stevia. The cool thing about schizandra (other than the fact that I wrote a novel about Schizandra Ginger Parker) is that it is known as the “5-flavored berry.” This means that it can amplify or adjust whatever flavors you combine with it. If your green smoothie were wine, you could say schizandra would enhance the “bouquet.”

cinnamon

This spice deserves its own little blurb. Not only does it add depth, sweetness and spiciness to just about any flavor combination, but it also helps to regulate blood sugar. If you use essential oil, a couple drops will give good flavor. If you use the spice itself, 1 tsp-1 tbsp will transform your smoothie. Err on the side of caution first and add as desired. Cinnamon works best as a subtle flavor but can easily become the dominant one if used too heavily.

chai tea

I’ve written on this before as a way of transforming dandelion greens, figs and apples into a cider-like concoction. The rich flavors of chai tea also make a nice, chilled background to tropical fruit based smoothies. Because cilantro is used sometimes in Indian cooking, chai tea also works well in making that one more palatable to the unitiated. 😉

zucchini

I learned about this from Melissa Mango. If you want to create a creamy consistency without the heavy fats or adding tons of bananas, you can peel (or not peel) a zucchini and add it into your blender. It has very little flavor on its own but will bulk up your drink into a thicker experience.

cucumber

One of my favorite smoothie add-ons, especially in summer for its cooling effects. Cucumber also has lots of silica in the peel, so buy organic and use unpeeled if possible.

frozen bananas

This one seems obvious but it’s a godsend on a hot summer afternoon without air conditioning. Freezing bananas also ensures you always have some fruit on hand for those “forgot to go produce shopping” moments. Peel and break them into pieces first! They are a staple, but I find that ANY smoothie tastes much better cold.

Other Random Tips

A few other superfast things I’ve been doing lately:

spirulina pudding: 1 avocado mashed together with 1-2 TBSP spirulina powder, and a sweetener of your choice (agave, stevia, xylitol). Bliss out!

maca-cacao-goji pudding: 1 avocado mashed together with 1-2 TBSP maca powder and 1-2 TBSP cacao powder, plus sweetener of your choice. I usually just use 1 packet of stevia. Top with optional goji berries.

fruit salad on bitter greens: if you hate the bitterness of uber-healthy dandelion greens or arugula, try topping them with fresh strawberries, peaches and raspberries. You won’t even need a dressing.

dandelion pesto: a healthier take on the basil version and a good way to get these supergreens into your system. I make mine with an entire bunch of dandelion greens, a tablespoon of olive oil, juice of half a lemon, a hint of walnut oil if available, some raw walnuts, pinch of himalyan sea salt and either a bit of cinnamon honey, or just the tiniest dusting of cinnamon and a packet of xylitol. Process in a food processor until reasonably smooth, but still a little crunchy. Serve on portabella mushrooms topped with tomato and parsley, or as a sauce for zucchini or brown rice pasta.

kim chee guacamole

Add your own or store bought kim chee to an avocado and eat with a salad or tortilla chips. You won’t even need to spice it because the tangy, spicy kim chee makes it taste a bit like salsa guacamole (with the advantage of probiotics). This one is more hard core than the other recipes, but I’m sharing it for those people who, like me, really love fermented foods — or at least wish they did!

For more super-easy tips from me, as well as lots of awesome raw chefs, please see The Lazy Raw Foodist’s Guide. Enjoy Summer’s bounty!