March 30, 2008
March 18, 2008
March 15, 2008
March 12, 2008
Going all raw can be terribly new terrain for anyone who grows up eating the Standard American Diet (S.A.D.). Familiar analog food is so good for those times when you really want the comfort of the known and lasagna is one of those dishes that can be very emotionally satisfying for someone who has begun a raw journey, but also for anyone at anytime!
I made this dinner for a client who is very conscious of his health by typical standards, (no meat other than fish, and almost no sugar) and is going raw to loose extra weight gained during extensive travel and to explore it as a health option. Yay! We’ll see how well received this was later today.
And so, I’m back. This was very well received, which pleased me to no end, naturally! I usually make this with a layer of marinated mushrooms, however mushrooms are on the very short list of ingredients to avoid for this client and so I used a walnut ‘meat’ layer instead. It can not be stressed enough how important it is to very thoroughly chew a meal that includes chunky nuts. It makes all the difference in how well one’s body digests. Also, a little known fact is that chewing is a trigger for the release of serotonin, the ‘feel good’ chemical, and intimately linked to the digestive tract and so that’s a double win! Better chewing equals better digestion equals a happier and more nourished you.
For the noodles:
2 medium zucchini
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1/4 cup olive oil
big pinch of celtic salt
Slice the zucchini’s 1/16″ thin with the mandoline or cut carefully with a vegetable peeler. Place into a small bowl with the marinade ingredients and gently toss and shuffle like a deck of cards, keeping the strips uniformly straight to evenly coat. Let them marinate in a bowl on the counter while you prepare the rest.
For the Cheese:
*I’ve done this chunky or creamy; this time I chose to go creamy and I think that’s become my preference.
1 cup dry mac nuts, pine nuts or cashews – or any combination thereof (I use dry because then I can use more liquid to blend it creamy and it will thicken nicely as it sits)
1/2 lemon, juice of
1 clove garlic
1/3 t celtic salt (err on the side of under-salting because the tomato sauce is saltyish, and it tastes more like a ricotta with less salt)
1/2 t coriander powder
2 T nutritional yeast
2 to 4 T water, only just enough to move the blender, it should be thicker than yogurt
Puree all to desired creamyness in the blender (use a high speed blender like VitaMix for best results), or if you haven’t got a powerful blender, use a food processor. Taste and make adjustments as necessary.
1/2 cup soaked sundried tomatoes, squeezed as dry as possible in a clean dish towel or paper towels, as they can stain.
1 med tomato, or about one cup diced, super ripe
1 clove garlic, minced or pressed fine
1/2 t celtic salt
1 T Italian herb mix
1/2 cup chopped parsley
Pulse everything together in the food processor. Leave it a bit chunky for texture.
1 cup soaked walnuts
1 T nutritional yeast
1 t cumin, 1 t coriander
1 T onion powder
1 clove garlic
1/4 of a small onion, roughly chopped
1/4 of a red bell, roughly chopped
1/2 stick celery, roughly chopped
1 t nama shoyu
Pulse all together a few times until evenly chopped; not too fine, not too chunky…***NOTE: T = tablespoon and t = teaspoon in all my recipes.
Drain the zucchini slices and lay them down, one overlapping the other at each midway point, to create the base using anywhere from 4 to 6 slices. Keep in mind that it’s best to do individual servings rather than one large lasagna because cutting generally disturbs the presentation, no matter how sharp your knife.
Use a tablespoon to drop dollops of the tomato sauce on the zucchini base and spread evenly about 1/4 inch thick. Top that with the cheese in the same way, then another layer of zucchini. Begin the second layer with the nut meat, then the tomato, then the cheese, reserving a bit each of the tomato and cheese for garnish. Top the last layer of cheese with more zucchini and lay a tablespoon of the reserved tomato sauce in a dollop ontop. Put a lesser amount of cheese in a dollop on top of that. I garnished with half a sun-dried black olive. Served with a side of simple and refreshing undressed carrot salad and an organic plum tomato and there you have it! Enjoy ~~~
March 3, 2008
So, nooo…, it’s definitely not a born beauty, and there may be some textural issues to overcome, but for flavor and nutrition – it is the BEST! Am I sure about the flavor part, you ask? Well. YES, frankly, and it is largely thanks to a recipe called ‘Rocket Fuel’ that was making the rounds in my circle when I went raw for the first time, seven years ago. It’s a great, forgiving recipe that I wished I had known about for my first four months of raw when I lived on blender food alone, not knowing how else to prepare anything, haha! I had inadvertantly hit upon the very thing my body required to shift into this lifestyle: the easiest, most nutritious preparation possible in the form of vegetable smoothies, or as I like to call it: Blender Food.
I am not so enamoured with the concept of adding fruit to greens in a smoothie, other than the occasional addition of perhaps a quarter of an apple to round out a particularly intense combination like dandelion greens or the like. The following recipe is perfect for people like me who don’t like sweet greens and yet want something powerfully pleasing to the palate. And, being a smoothie, it is by nature fast food. That’s rather catchy, isn’t it: By Nature, Fast Food. Fast food, by Nature. Hmmm…
This will fill a one quart mason jar, more or less, depending upon the size of your vegetables. I used to make HUGE blender batches, using lots of water and I now prefer this in the proportions given below. Experiment a bit to find your own preference, because that is probably what your body needs most. (And then expect that to shift, and shift again, at some point!) An even more potent variation if this recipe, and the one that is most optimal is in my up-coming recipe book. For now, enjoy this one. I do, almost daily!
TIP: I keep all my veggies washed and prepped (but uncut to retain nutritional integrity) in plastic boxes in the fridge, that way all I have to do is pull out the entire bin and I can slice off and toss bits of everything in there into the blender and have a fulfilling, delicious, nutritional and portable meal, in way under 5 mins.
2 sticks of celery, sliced with 1/4 inch cuts
1/4 carrot stick, scrubbed, only peeled if not organic, and sliced into discs
1/4 beet, roughly chopped
2 inch wedge of red or green cabbage, or bok choi
1/4 bunch of kale or collards
1/2 bunch of cilantro, can sub or add parsley but it will thicken, because parsley puree will gel.
1/2 lemon, juiced and NO SEEDS or it will be too bitter. Trust me, I’ve tried to be manly and take it with seeds for their cleansing effect and decided it is just not necessary to suffer that much bitterness. Just take citrus seed capsules. Really.
1 big splash of nama shoyu (about 1 Tbl)
pinch of cayenne and or an inch or two of sliced ginger, both ideally. I am also into fresh tumeric right now, which I LOVE so you’ll see that and some spirulina tabs in the photo above as well.
Add filtered or spring water to your preference, about 1 cup is a good place to start, and blend. If you’d like a big pitcher of easy to drink liquid, then add water to the top of the vegetables and you’ll have enough to last you an hour or two. It’s also easier to drink that way if the thick texture bothers you. Matt Amsden doesn’t add any water, (he says at the bottom of this post), but does add a whole cucumber. I love it that way too, then it’s like a spoonable, savory pudding. Either way, he has another helpful tip, which is to remember to stir in some whole goji berries, about 1/4 cup or a nice handful, after you blend it in order to have a physical reminder to chew your juice! Goji berries are sweet and salty, so I can handle them. Forty percent of digestion takes place in the mouth and many digestive issues can be eliminated by simply chewing everything that goes into your mouth until you get a flavor change, signaling that it’s ok to swallow now. This definitely includes liquids, except perhaps water, though I wonder what Danny Vitalis would have to say on that subject!
Yeah, so, like I said: yuhhhhhhhh um………………..