real raw kitchen

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Catching up ...

Oh hello lovely people.. How have you been? Fabulous, I hope. And what about me? Well if you've been following this blog at all then you might have noticed I've been awfully quiet for quite some time. I had big plans for this blog (and several product reviews waiting to make an appearance) but life happens.

And what about life, anyway? Well, lots of things have been moving and changing for me. It's been a rough couple of months, trying to say the least, and so my priorities shifted from fun and food to let's-survive-to-the-next-day. I'm happy to announce that I've survived, I'm alive and well, though my ego is a bit bruised. It happens and I'm not very fond of these past few months but I firmly believe that awful experiences are one of the most unifying things in the human race, in a sad yet beautiful sort of way. We all experience tragedy, sadness, heartache, disappointment, and pain and so even though we are all very different we all at least know these experiences. It's not something I'd like to connect with others over, but it's humbling and has expanded my capacity for love and compassion immensely, and for that, I'm grateful.

So what have I been up to? 

Well, lots of juice and lots of self-care. 

Green juice and orange juice seem to be the only things that really appeal to me lately. Every once in awhile I get an appetite for potatoes and so I gorge on them while my appetite lasts. Otherwise, I've been sticking to my juice.




I've also upgraded my bedding into something light and airy and while that seems awfully trivial it is actually something I'm very proud of. I look forward to my bed every night and I enjoy awaking each morning because my sheets are just so me


I've been taking some time off from Life, lately, and retreating to places where I'm loved. There is nothing in the world so isolating and diminishing to the human spirit than to feel that you are unloved, and likewise, there is nothing so rebuilding to the human spirit than finding a community or family that loves you deeply and unconditionally. The latest trip I made was to Arizona where I met up with my mother and grandmother and I spent time healing and laughing with the two women that love me most in this world. I also took quite a bit of time for myself, as well, by hiking the red rocks of Arizona. It was a grueling experience since there are no mountains I could have trained on here in Miami, but it was so worth it. Like everything in life, the pain endured only shows you the amazing views and capabilities you have on the other side. And boy, the views were amazing.


It's also almost mango season here in Miami so I'm just beyond thrilled. Mangoes are my favorite food in the entire world and even with my lack of appetite I've had for the past few months I can still find myself enjoying the sweet nectar of a perfectly ripe mango. So lately I've been incorporating them into my days. Either a bowl of mango or blended with some OJ. Whatever, I don't care how it happens, mangoes are amazing.



Along the theme of Self-Care I've been spending as much time as possible outside. The only thing to do outside, that's enjoyable, here in Miami is go to the beach so whenever I get a chance I make the trek to the beach (which, to clarify, unlike what the media will have you believe, Miami is not, in fact, on the beach. Most of Miami is 30 minutes away from the beach, on a good day, and only a small strip of Miami is on the beach and that is actually an entirely different city called Miami Beach ... get it?) I now have a nice racer-back tan from wearing my tanks and sports bras outside. I've found myself walking for hours and miles and miles, just sorting through this thing called Life and contemplating all of my greatest moments. The sun does magically wonderful things for me and so it's been a welcomed experience.



I haven't made much food and so I have really had nothing to post about, here. I've also stayed away from this blog because I tend to prefer a happier tone in my posts and I just have been unable to find that voice lately. I figured it's best to heal my voice and my insides before I try to stress over something that should really be stress-relieving

What I have found is that I've adopted the 801010 lifestyle, once again, and it's been great for my energy and my body. It's extremely easy for me to digest 801010 foods so I stick to those ratios while I try to build my appetite back up. Until then, dry-roasted potatoes and orange juice seems to be on the menu for quite some time to come!




All caught up? Good. I have a few more trips on the books where I will travel back home to the warm embrace of California and loving friends. Thank God. It feels damn good to be loved and though I tend to view myself as a trail blazer and an independently adventurous woman for moving across the country for the sake of "something new" I am finding that it is just so important to also make sure you still have a home or support system to fall back on in these new places (or to pick a place that is capable of providing that). And when you don't, then damn .. it's rough, I tell ya. So heading back home is exactly what my soul needs and I have a feeling my head will be on a little bit straighter when I return.

When I return, I'm hoping to get some recipes going in my kitchen again, and then, up here as well. Wish me luck .. I love you all. Thanks for understanding :)

xo


Thursday, March 6, 2014

RECIPE: coconut vanilla chia pudding

You guys.. Wow. My last post from yesterday was a little bit heavy and not at all what I would hope to share. I have received so much support in comments, emails, and Instagram that I'm just completely touched. I feel a new boost of energy to keep on keepin' on. I know there is a community of love and support out there for me and it may not be in Miami but that doesn't mean I have to just feel invaluable and suffer alone. Right?!

On a more food-related note, I do recommend this gorgeous dish. It's packed with so many goodies, healthy fats and protein, that it is the perfect treat for a high activity lifestyle. I used to eat it all the time when I was training for races (I'm on a running hiatus right now...). Give it a try and let me know what you think!

If you wanted to, you could use maple syrup instead of dates to make it sweeter. That's an excellent option that I opted out of simply because my husband doesn't like sweet things ..

Coconut Vanilla Chia Pudding

Ingredients

  • 1 cup coconut milk
  • 1/4 cup chia seeds
  • 2-4 medjool dates, soaked and pitted
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla

Instructions

  • Combine everything in a high speed blender and blend until completely smooth.
  • Pour into a cup/bowl and let sit for a few minutes (the chia seeds swell and absorb the liquid)
  • Add fresh fruit, fancy toppings, or even coconut cream. Delicious.



Wednesday, March 5, 2014

What I Ate Wednesday: march 5, 2014

Eating is a serious thing in my household. I've been slacking (majorly) in the eating department for the past few months and so I've been slacking--also majorly--in this WIAW series. My appetite has been non-existent, mostly due to this thing called Life and so the fun and joy has been sucked out of my kitchen experiments. Instead, I've been eating for sustenance, mostly, hoping to glean enough calories to not pass out while driving on the freeway. As a result, I've also sucked the fun out of this post.

Sorry. Life happens. 

Really, though. I am sorry about that. I know that my posts have been sporadic and my "voice" has been somewhat lost, lately, and I don't want it to come off as flippant, as if this blogging thing is really no thing at all. In reality, it's a fantastic outlet for me to just get lost in something I love and revel in a community that actually supports me and so I do not take this thing lightly.

So, wanna know what I have been eating? This is a list of my usual suspects, lately. The neat thing about going through a hard time is that it makes me much more relate-able, because we all go through hard times, right? It also makes meal prep extremely efficient because I don't quite have the stamina to do anything that takes more than 30 minutes.. which is fantastic for YOU because I doubt many others really want to spend more than 30 minutes during their meal prep, either!


The Best Watermelon Juice. The best. No exaggeration. Go make it now.

Nutella Banana Boats. I ran some hazelnuts in a food processor until a butter was formed, then added maple syrup and cacao. Then I spread the goodness on some bananas and sprinkled crushed hazelnuts over the top. Best decision ever.

Kale Salad. I've been digging the kale lately. I've been extremely open with my relationship with kale, calling myself a failed vegan since I really despised the stuff. But you know what? Lately it's the only green I can bring myself to eat. I don't even understand it. It's the only thing I ever truly crave anymore. It's probably because my body knows it's so packed with nutrients and if I'm going to eat anything at all it might as well be this powerhouse called Kale.

Peanut Butter Banana Bars. Sadly, I actually don't have a recipe for this because it's a variation from Emily's new book (amazing .. go buy it now!). I took her peanut butter base and slathered my own chocolate frosting on it and layered some sliced bananas on top. Oh. My. Effing. Gawwdd.

Traditional Spaghetti. Noodles can be so comforting for some strange reason and so I found myself staring deep into a bowl of this delicious dish.

Vanilla Chia Pudding. I actually made this for my husband (I'm such a sweetheart, I know) and stole a few bites because I'm selfish like that. The recipe will be up soon (here) but it's basically coconut milk blended with chia seeds, dates, and vanilla. I mixed in some bananas and coconut cream for added goodness.


**If you make a purchase through the Amazon recommendations I make a small percentage from the purchase at no cost to you. So cool for me, so cool for you!

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

RECIPE: the best watermelon juice

This juice rocks. Seriously. I always think it's a little presumptuous to label something as "the best" but I mean... come on. This is so good, so nourishing, so refreshing, so everything.

I think when I say "one whole watermelon" I scare people about the sugar content, though I'm not sure why that's the first thought that comes to mind. It's true, watermelon does have a high sugar content but I like to look at this holistically. I eat a fully plant-based diet, I make everything from scratch, and I use my body how it was intended to be used. I did not experience a crash in energy or blood sugar levels and I am by no means overweight. Food is fuel and I'm not sure there is ever really a reason to limit yourself from whole, nourishing foods if you're still hungry and you're relying on the Earth to supply your nutrition, in the first place.

What really peeves me (do people still use that word?!) is that many times people will question THIS but continue on eating fast food, eating packaged food loaded with weird chemicals and sodium, drinking exorbitant amounts of coffee loaded with more chemicals, and slathering on even more chemicals all in the name of "the norm". 

When did being natural become extreme??

This isn't to say that I'm an elitist and I hate anyone and everyone that doesn't abide by the laws of nature. Not at all. I'm of the belief that we should have the freedom to do our own thang and do what's best for ourselves ... watermelon juice included. 

Whoa. When did watermelon juice ever become an impromptu soap box?? Let's get down to the juice, shall we?

The Best Watermelon Juice

Ingredients

  • 1 small watermelon
  • 1 lemon
  • 1 T raw wildflower honey

Instructions

  • Scoop out the flesh of the watermelon and add to a blender. 
  • Add the remaining ingredients and blend until smooth.
  • Over a large bowl, pour the blended ingredients through a strainer to catch the remaining juice.
  • ENJOY.


Monday, March 3, 2014

RECIPE: traditional spaghetti

There is nothing quite so satisfying or fresh as a bowl of zucchini noodles. Don't believe me? That's okay. Just give this sauce a try (or this one, or this one, or this one, or this one) and you will see what I mean. A bowl of noodles can be raw AND filling AND packed with flavor. It's amazing, hits the spot, and really is just what I need: a no-fuss meal that is deeply satisfying.
Traditional Spaghetti

Ingredients 
for the noodles:
for the sauce:
  • 1 cup sun dried tomatoes (NOT in oil), soaked for a couple hours
  • 1/2 cup tomatoes, de-seeded
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1 T olive oil (optional)
  • 1 t chili flakes (optional)
  • fresh basil, thyme, oregano, etc
  • sea salt to taste
Instructions
for the noodles:
  • Follow the instructions on your manual
  • Sprinkle with sea salt and gently mix. Set on some paper towels and allow the liquid to drain for about an hour.
  • Pat dry to remove excess liquid and salt, then they are ready to use!
for the sauce:
  • Drain the sun dried tomatoes.
  • Combine everything in a food processor and process until it is fully incorporated. 
  • Toss with the noodles and some fresh basil.
  • EAT.

**disclosure: if you purchase anything I link to you via Amazon I make a small percentage out of it at no cost to you! So cool for me, so cool for you!

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

REVIEW and RECIPE: Rawsome Vegan Baking and peanut butter bars with chocolate and bananas

This is a peanut butter bar topped with chocolate mousse and bananas. These are amazing and I can't even begin to tell you how delicious they are. They are half my own creation and half of a genius little creation from the mind of Emily von Euw. The recipe is from her amazing new book, Rawsome Vegan Baking, which you should plan on buying right away. Why?

Because she's a genius and the pictures and recipes are awesome. And also, this recipe is in there.

I didn't have the toppings for the peanut butter bars, so instead I topped it with my own chocolate mousse and bananas. It was amazing. It felt like an Elvis-meets-Emily-hybrid-dessert, which is fine because those are the two best things about dessert, anyway.





And the book? Well, let me tell you something .. of all the raw foodies to make a book I think this is the exact person and exact book that should have come together. The pictures are gorgeous, as usual, and the recipes are just so drool-worthy that I felt like kicking myself as I thumbed through the pages (because why couldn't I think of something so fantastic?!). 





They are indulgent, fairly simple, and just beautiful to look at. Divine. The recipes are no exception, either. As is true to her genius brain, the recipes hit on all the marks: delicious, decadent, simple ingredients, beautiful, and creative. They add an edge that seems to be missing in much of the raw food world, right now, mostly because of the creativity in both the recipes and the imagery. 

Her personality shines throughout each recipe, as well. She didn't sell her soul in order to produce a book and she didn't allow a shoddy book for the sake of her own personality, either (a common problem among eager bloggers). Instead, the book so definitely represents her in every capacity all while being a fantastic collection of recipes and photographs. 

Emily was so kind to send me a copy to get a glimpse and I think it's perfect timing since the release date is in March. This is my very first creation based on her original recipe, and I'm excited to bring you more in the near future ..

In the meantime, you can go pre-order her book now!! Support this lovely lady, and support me too ... when you make a purchase through my links I get a miniscule   tiny  small kickback at NO cost to you!

Monday, February 24, 2014

REVIEW: dharma glass straws

First, I'd like to say .. whoa. It's been over a week since I've posted and that's a little crazy to me. This past week .. and past few months, in fact .. have been wonderful in that they've provided me with huge learning curves, incredible opportunities for growth, and proven to be great indicators of my strength as a woman. Meaning, this shit has sucked. So naturally, the last thing on my mind has been recipe development, let alone pictures or posts. This really seems backwards because it's one of my favorite things to do and could probably make this shit suck less. However, that's just not how life works and so I guess I'm flowing with this thing called Life.



What made it suck slightly less, though, are these glass straws. Glass Dharma reached out to me and asked if I'd like to sample their products. If you've been reading along for awhile then you know I love a good, economical, environmental way to be trendy. So of course I was delighted to try them on for size!

Soon after a neat package arrived at my door with lots of little goodies. I've been playing with these straws for the past week and I have to say that I'm hooked. I think that they will make fantastic gifts when the holiday season comes around and they serve as a wonderful buffer to my enamel when I'm gulping juice after juice.


So what's so great about these straws, besides the cute little color-coordinated beads?? 


Glass Dharma has a wonderful outline of their fabulous products on their site ...

Plain and simple, here’s how and why they work:
  • Glass straws don’t leach toxins into your food as you drink.
  • Each time you use your glass straw equals one less plastic straw ending up in your landfill.
  • One glass straw replaces thousands of plastic straws. (How many times will you use a straw the rest of your life?)
  • Using your glass drinking straw adds a feeling of beauty to your day.

GlassDharma glass drinking straws are:
  • Made of borosilicate tubing and is the strongest glass commercially available.
  • Means that we have spared no expense in bringing you the strongest, most durable drinking straw possible.
  • Annealed to Corning, Inc. specifications (a process that strengthens the glass).
  • So you can have confidence you are purchasing the highest quality glass straws available.
  • Made of glass which does not leach ANY TOXINS into your food.
  • So you can use your non-toxic straws with confidence.
  • Created with the beauty and elegance that only glass can give.
  • You’ll feel like royalty – with a touch of ‘glass’.
  • A great environmental addition to your kitchenware.
  • Great for hot or cold drinks, microwave and dishwasher safe!!
  • Are fully backed by our 100% Satisfaction Guarantee.
  • If they don’t meetyour expectations, return for a full refund.
  • Covered with our unbelievable Lifetime Guarantee Against Breakage.
  • Means that if they ever break, we’ll replace them - Free, (Why do we do this?)
  • Hand-made in the U.S.A. Buying from GlassDharma means that your dollar is not going off-shore - it stays right here in the U.S.A.

Bottom Line:

Would I recommend them? YES
Did I love them? YES
Are they affordable? YES

The Pros:
  • They are environmentally friendly
  • They are strong and durable
  • They are unique with the double dots
  • They come in many sizes
  • They are easy to clean
  • They are a decent price
The Cons:
  • They break if dropped (duh, be careful)
  • There isn't a corresponding lid to hold them in place
And that's really it. The reason I love them is because the "cons" aren't really cons about the product, but more of a natural part of the experience.


You can buy them here. Enter the code "BSF" for a 10% discount on your purchase!

Let me know what you think!

xo




Thursday, February 13, 2014

ROUND-UP: romantic, sexy, gorgeous valentine's day recipes


Nothing says "excuse" like a perfectly made up holiday such as Valentine's Day. What other day do we excuse our decisions, indiscretions, excesses with the flick of a hand other than one like Valentine's Day. Well, I love these kinds of holidays for that exact reason. I rarely (if ever) celebrate them the way they are meant to be celebrated but instead I take that opportunity to think up the sexiest foods I can.

Sexy food? Yup. 

So what is 'sexy'? Chocolate. Raspberries. Sauces. Creamy. Easy. Lick-off-your-body type foods. I've added two new recipes to my sexy repertoire this year and looked up the rest just so we can revel in the abundance of it all. Isn't plant food great like that? We get to celebrate the abundance, not feel utterly guilty!

From left to right, the top and then the bottom:

easy chocolate pudding This pudding is DI.VINE. One of my favorite indulgences because it's delicious and so, so easy.

vanilla avocado pudding If I'm not in the mood for chocolate (which is hardly ever) but I want something sweet and groan-worthy, this is the pudding I go to. It's quick, easy, delicious, and deceptively healthy.

sweet cherry tart I've been all about the 801010 lifestyle, which is centered on low fat meals, and so naturally I'm all about the sweet cherry tart. It's delicious and amazingly simple. So good, I can't even describe it. You have to try it for yourself.

cacao and strawberry pie Chocolate and berries goes together so well that I think they were separated at birth. This is a sweet and light dessert that leaves you feeling good (and still sexy!) rather than full and.. um.. rounded. Perfect for Vday.

cacao and raspberry magic cake This is my latest dessert creation and I'm obsessed. It's so good, full of so many different layers in each bite, and is the perfect combination of sweet, creamy, and salty.

chocolate valentine's hearts with pink frosting These little guys are perfect for groups or for bite-sized treats. They are cute on display and easy to gobble up.

chocolate mousse cups This amazing dessert is really just the perfect combination of everything that is good in this world. Easily one of my top 5 desserts... and I make and eat a lot of desserts.

valentine's day cheesecake This is one of my very first raw desserts so the picture doesn't do it justice. But it's so cute and such a classic it just has to make this list.

Take a look-see and let me know you're favorite!

xo

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

RECIPE: chocolate valentine's hearts with pink frosting


With a "holiday" like Valentine's Day coming up it just makes sense to have heart-shaped foods with chocolate and pink-something. So this time around I have made some chocolate brownie-cookies with a pink coconut frosting. Tasty, simple, easy, and sexy all at once.

Chocolate Valentine's Hearts with Pink Frosting

Ingredients

For the cookie:

  • 1 cup walnuts
  • 4-5 dates, soaked and pitted
  • 2 T cacao powder
  • 1 T coconut oil
  • 1 t vanilla
  • pinch of sea salt
For the frosting:
  • 1/4 cup coconut manna
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup (not raw)
  • 1-2 T beet juice
  • 1 t vanilla

Instructions

For the cookie:

  • Place the walnuts in a food processor and process until a flour forms. 
  • Add the remaining ingredients and process until a chunky dough forms.
  • You can place in a baking dish to make brownies, or roll out between two plastic sheets to make cookies.
  • Place in the fridge until ready to frost.

For the frosting:

  • In a glass bowl and the coconut manna and coconut oil and place over a pot of warm water. As it melts, mix to incorporate.*
  • Remove from heat and add remaining ingredients.
  • Spread onto cookies and place in the fridge to harden.
*A Note: The frosting may be thick or it may be creamy ... either is fine. I make this frosting often and it's always a guess to how mine will turn out!

**disclosure: if you purchase anything I link to you via Amazon I make a small percentage out of it at no cost to you! So cool for me, so cool for you!


Tuesday, February 11, 2014

RECIPE: cacao raspberry magic cake


Does anything pair better than chocolate and raspberries? Anyone? The answer is a big, fat, resounding "NO". And do you want the absurd truth about this cake? This was a kitchen disaster for me. I had deemed it a failure before I pulled it out to photograph.

I originally planned something involving cashews (which I was out of) and lots of dates (which I was low on). All I had were macadamia nuts and a few dates, some juicy raspberries and some fresh cacao butter and cacao liquor. Why I thought this was a disaster is beyond me, but let me tell you, I was ready for disappointment.

Then. THEN. The most fabulous thing happened. THIS happened. And I'm delighted (and so is my #1 taste tester, aka my husband). It's the perfect matrimony of sweet, savory, creamy, and tart. It's perfect. I happen to love the taste of macadamia nuts and I prefer my cakes to not be too sweet, so it worked out perfectly. You can choose to forgo the macadamia nuts and stick with cashews (or even add more sweetener). Regardless, this is divine. And beautiful. MMmmm...


Cacao Raspberry Magic Cake

Ingredients
  • 1 cup almonds
  • 2 cups macadamia nuts
  • 1/2 cup maple syrup (more if you prefer a sweet cake) (not raw)
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil
  • 1/2 lemon, juiced
  • 4-5 dates, soaked and peeled
  • 2 T cacao powder
  • 1 t vanilla
  • pinch of sea salt
  • cacao shell (recipe below)

Instructions
  • Place the almonds in a food process and process until a flour is formed.
  • Add the dates, salt, and cacao powder and process until a chunky dough is formed.
  • Dump contents into a 6" springform pan and press down until even.
  • Next, place the macadamia nuts in a food processor and process until a flour is formed.
  • Add the lemon juice, maple syrup, vanilla, and coconut oil and process until smooth. (Add 1-2 T of water as needed to facilitate blending).
  • Dump contents over the crust and smooth over until even.
  • Place in the freezer for an hour, then move to the refrigerator.
  • Pour the cacao shell over the top and place in the refrigerator to harden. Top with fresh raspberries, coconut nibs, whatever sounds good!
Cacao Shell

Ingredients
Instructions
  •  In a glass bowl, add the cacao butter and cacao liquor. Make sure everything that comes in contact with this is 100% dry. Any amount of water will create a chunky, curdled consistency.
  • Place the bowl over a pot of warm water and stir until melted.
  • Add the maple syrup and vanilla and stir to incorporate.
  • Pour into mold or over dessert. Place in the refrigerator to harden.



**disclosure: if you purchase anything I link to you via Amazon I make a small percentage out of it at no cost to you! So cool for me, so cool for you!


Monday, February 10, 2014

What I'm Reading Now: Cecelia Ahern


Sometimes I feel like I have a huge duty to share with you all the latest raw-related material .. and then I realize, how boring is that? Of course I'm obsessed with this lifestyle and I could read endless books regarding the diet but at the same time I have to give my creativity room to flourish as well. my favorite way to do this is by reading fiction books that have a flare for romanticism. 

I'm a girl. What can I say?

Don't you fret, though, I have plenty of books that are directly related to this raw lifestyle as well as the spiritual aspect of a wholesome and pure life. It happens. But today I have to be completely honest and share with you one of my favorite indulgences. 

Speaking of indulgences, I also tend to indulge in some Ally McBeal whenever I'm feeling especially girly but that is neither here nor there and a little bit less respectable than a good old-fashioned book. Again, I'm a girl. What can I say? I love the McBeal.

This book that I'm reading now is by one of my (many) favorite authors, Cecelia Ahern. I discovered her way back in high school and so I think I just have a loyal dedication to her for that very reason. Other than that, I love her writing style. It's refreshing, descriptive and incredibly creative. Most of her novels are so heavily based in fantasy that it feels good to be transported into something somewhere else.



This is the latest of her books and so I've only just begun, but I can say with complete confidence that I've loved every single one of her books. They aren't as challenging, emotionally or intellectually, say, as some of my other favorites (like White Oleander or Tipping the Velvet) but her writing is intelligent nonetheless with a beautiful flare for description. 

Is she girly? Yup. Is she popular. Maybe, I don't know, I don't keep up with the "latest". Is her writing simple? Mostly. Even still, she writes in a way that makes it easy to disappear into a distant land all the while without soiling your precious neurons with dumbed down writing and raunchy plot lines.

Some of her other books that I've read are below. I'd really recommend any of them, not just the one I'm currently reading.



**disclosure: if you purchase anything I link to you via Amazon I make a small percentage out of it at no cost to you! So cool for me, so cool for you!




Thursday, February 6, 2014

RECIPE: avocado herb pesto with zoodles



Three years into this whole full-time raw food thing and this is still one of my favorite meals. I can't explain it. It's always and reliably delicious, filling, and causes zero bloat or indigestion. I love it from the very center of my being. I decided to make it for a raw food potluck I had with the girls and needless to say it was a hit.

I hope you find happiness in your pesto bowl much like I have!


Avocado Herb Pesto with Zoodles

Ingredients

  • 2-3 zucchinis
  • 1 ripe avocado
  • 1 handful each of fresh basil, cilantro, parsley
  • 1/4 cup of truly sundried tomatoes (not in oil), chopped
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1 lemon, juiced
  • a pinch of sea salt, to taste


Instructions

  • Use a spiral slicer to make noodles out of your zucchini. Sprinkle with a pinch of sea salt and toss to coat. Place on some paper towels and allow the water to drain while you prepare the sauce. I prefer my noodles to drain for a few hours at room temperature.
  • Combine the avocado, herbs, garlic, lemon juice, and a pinch of seat salt in a food processor and process until smooth.
  • Once the noodles are dry and soft, toss with the sauce. Add the sundried tomatoes and toss, once more.
  • SERVE!



**disclosure: if you purchase anything I link to you via Amazon I make a small percentage out of it at no cost to you! So cool for me, so cool for you!

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

What I Ate Wednesday: february 5, 2014


Do you like how I completely neglected you yesterday and failed to put up a recipe? Yup. I did. I took a break from recipes this week because I can't keep up with the eating of the recipes. I make all these fabulous things but can't eat it fast enough and end up giving away so much food! I don't know about you but I'm not trying to waste money like that. So instead, I opted to slow down on recipe development .. for now.

This week has been another busy one, packed with lots of duties and tasks. I've found myself gravitating toward an 801010 lifestyle, naturally, without really intending to. I think it was my body's natural way of consuming the right amount of energy to sustain all the hard workin' I have had to do!

Just like last week, these aren't incredible photos nor are they incredibly special recipes, but it's an honest look at what a regular ole' girl in a basic raw food life eats. 

Green Juice. That ain't new. But it's always worth noting because it really has become a staple in my diet. My favorite green juice is pretty sweet: 2 apples, 2 cucumbers, 1 head of celery, 1" ginger, 1 lemon or lime. Perfection.

Orange Juice. I've been loving this citrus season and I make fresh juice out of either oranges, clementines or tangerines every few days. This week I chose oranges and have been blending the juice with basil, bananas, and spinach for 60 ounces. So divine and filled me up all day.

Berries. I've had a serious slump in appetite, and I've mentioned it before, and the only fruit that sounds delicious when I'm hungry is a big bowl of berries. Strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, raspberries .. all of them. I like to blend them up with some water and sip on it throughout the day.

Macro Bowl. Seriously so good and so easy. I love mixing lots of veggies and sauerkraut together and then slurping up the goodness. I've been slowly adding these types of dishes into my diet, mostly in the evenings, and have noticed my energy boost right back up almost immediately. So good.

Abundance Bowl. I've been making this for years, and much like Sarah at My New Roots it's sort of just one of those meals I have regularly without ever bothering to share. My go-to combo: sprouted mung beans, massaged kale, sauerkraut, green onions, pomegranate seeds, roasted sweet potato in coconut oil, and a tahini miso dressing. It hits the spot every single time and even if my appetite is low I still enjoy it immensely.


Pretty boring, huh? I'm sorry, I really wish it was more exciting! I'm hoping this weekend I can get together some of my recipes on queue and share them with you! In the meantime, for a more real-life and real-time look at my eats, check out my Instagram!


What recipes have YOU been eating lately?

xo

Monday, February 3, 2014

DIY: upcoming home projects

Warning: this is completely unrelated to raw food ... sometimes I just want to be creative , yo'. 

I have been scurrying around during the daytime and collapsing into bed at night so I've yet to accomplish the many things on my ever growing To-Do list. Instead of admonishing myself for it and secretly resenting the fact that I'm happily busied each day, I decided to share with you my upcoming projects. Maybe you've seen them around the web or maybe you have other recommendations to make.

 Either way, I think we all have a lot to offer each other and this a great space to share our knowledge!

Magnesium Body Butter by Wellness Mama. This has been on my to-do list for quite some time. Magnesium is an excellent natural way to relax, is great for pregnancy, and helps digestion move more smoothly. Since we've had some pretty restless nights in our household I'm anxious to try this out.

Knitting. I've wanted to learn to knit for the longest time and I think it's the most usable hobby one can have. Plus, this blog (linked) has some pretty neat projects that I'd be so proud of if I had completed them! .. baby steps.


Homemade Hair Mask. I've used coconut oil as a hair mask in the past and I enjoyed it, though I found that it left my hair a bit limp .. I'm dying to find another natural hair mask that isn't oil based and is easy.


DIY Upholstered Headboard. I've been dying to revamp our bedroom for quite some time now and my husband will be traveling for work in a couple weeks so I'm thinking of taking on this DIY project while he's away .. imagine the surprise he will have when he comes home to a new bedroom!!


This is what's coming up in our household. What kinds of projects do you have?

xo


Friday, January 31, 2014

HOW-TO: avoid the raw food cult


For some reason there seems to be a cultism around raw food and this makes me so sad. I first started out raw because I was just having so much fun .. then I kept with it because of all of the benefits. It's a lifestyle that brought me joy around food and vitality in an otherwise very ill body.

What I found shortly after calling myself a "raw foodist" is that there were many people pointing out that no-maple-syrup-is-not-raw and that roasted-sweet-potatoes-don't-count.

Pff. So what?

I make every single item I eat from scratch and the vast majority of it actually is raw. Plus, I make pretty awesome raw desserts, so I must be a partial raw foodist, right?? It's true, I'm not 100% raw and I actually don't think I'd like to be. I eat mostly raw and I love the culture around it but is there a way that we can support it--and each other--without making it seem like an all or nothing commitment?

I find the same thing happen with the vegan community, as well. Self-proclaimed vegans that actually don't check the ingredient labels on their cosmetics for animal products (or testing) are shamed for being a shallow vegan and not truly fighting for the cause...

Wait. What?!

I'm all about passion and even more about romance, but is there really such thing as a "bad" vegan?? It's a slippery slope that many diet dogmas find themselves in and quite frankly is something I'm embarrassed by as a self-proclaimed raw foodie. It's off putting not only to anyone that isn't already a part of the culture but even to those of us within it. I find myself staying slightly away from the 100% raw lifestyle mainly because I don't want a guilt trip for the one cooked meal I actually did eat. (Oh the horror when others find out that the raw food blogger ate a cooked veggie burger!!)

It's an elitist dogma that further separates us from mainstream dieters and deters people from trying it on for size in the first place. And that is the exact opposite reason why I fell in love with it to begin with! I fell in love with the creativity, the growth (both physically and spiritually), the freedom (how good it feels to eat in abundance and not be pained by it!), and the overall allure of such a different lifestyle than the mainstream eats. But when others begin shaming me for not being a fully committed, fully raw "raw foodie" then that's where I draw the line. At that point this lifestyle is more alienating for you if you cannot congratulate a person for making gains in their own personal growth rather than discounting them as a credible community member.

Luckily, the major figures in the raw food community that I have interacted with and look up to have not shunned me or anyone that I know of. I think this is partly due to the semi-celebrity status they hold among us regular folk, but also because more-raw-food is better than no-raw-food. What I have found, however, is that in some small circles there are discussions of whether or not something is technically raw and whether or not spices should be used in a raw dish ..

Let's all just agree that any savory dish with a little cumin sprinkled in it tastes infinitely better than with no spice at all, alright??


So here are some of my own pointers that I return to when I find that I am getting too sucked into the dogma:


  1. Relax. Seriously. Are meal times becoming stressful? Are you becoming increasingly worried with what is "raw" and what is "processed"? Then take a step back and just relax. If you are more disturbed by whether or not your meal is pure than you are basking in the deliciousness of it all then this lifestyle is not working. It's supposed to open doors, not close them.
  2. Celebrate the progress. Whether it's your own progress or the progress that others make toward a plant based lifestyle, it is always worth celebrating. Avoid being a raw food snob and instead rejoice in the fact that someone is making a healthy choice (and the same goes for any dogma!).
  3. Share your secrets. A lot of times this lifestyle can become secretive, almost like you're hiding out so you can just eat in peace. When this happens your life becomes very isolated and this only distances you from other, potential enthusiasts. Rather than acting as if this lifestyle is yours and yours alone, share your meals with others. This can be tricky at times because you also don't want to push people away for sharing too much information, but if they have questions, offer answers. If you want to eat out with your friends, then go for it and stay as raw as you are comfortable with. Be open about your choices and show others that it is an approachable topic, not an elitist club.
  4. 4. Give thanks. Take a look around at your current situation. How incredible is that? Very little of the total world population is so blessed enough to pick and choose what kind of diet they have, let alone nourish themselves in abundance. Take a moment to feel good and grateful about that.
    5. Be creative. If you’re eating out then get creative with the menu. Many people get frustrated at the limited options on some menus and that can sometimes come off as snooty. Instead, roll with it and piece together a meal that works for you.

What do you think? What are your tips for avoiding a dogma or label?

xo


Thursday, January 30, 2014

RECIPE: vanilla avocado pudding



This pudding is the perfect combination of creamy, sweet, comforting, fattening, and healthy. It's all the right things mixed into one. There are tons of avocado pudding recipes out there but only a handful are of the vanilla variety and even fewer use almond extract in it .. which I think carries mine to the top of the list of favorites for my husband and I.

Avocados are a raw foodies favorite obsession but I've noticed a sad trend lately and that's the "down-with-the-avocado-pudding" trend. It seems that many people are tired of using avocados in their puddings and I can't imagine why. When paired well with other ingredients it provides the perfect consistency and flavor. Not to mention it is SO incredibly easy to make and so, so accessible to most people (avocados are so much easier to buy and prepare than, say, a whole coconut, coconut manna, or some other odd ingredient).

That's why it's still my favorite pudding ingredient.

There. That settles that. Here's my recipe ...

Vanilla Avocado Pudding
Ingredients

  • 1 ripe avocado
  • 2-4 T sweetener (i.e. maple syrup, coconut nectar, etc.)
  • 1 t vanilla
  • 1/8 t almond extract
  • 4-5 strawberries, sliced (optional)

Instructions

  • Scoop out the green flesh of the avocado and place everything (except the strawberries) in a food processor. Process until completely smooth.
  • Mix with sliced strawberries and serve!
How easy is that?! And it's such a treat that it feels like it takes time ... not in my kitchen!!