real raw kitchen: February 2012

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

RECIPE: cream of broccoli soup

Vibrant, beautiful, pure life force energy ...
Cream of Broccoli

Ingredients
  • 3 cups water 
  • 1 cup unsalted raw cashews (macadamia nuts work well too) **
  • 1 teaspoon raw honey 
  • 2 cups of broccoli 
  • 1 avocado 
  • 1/2 garlic clove 
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil 
  • 1 teaspoon onion 
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt 
  • 1/8 teaspoon cumin 
  • 1/8 teaspoon black pepper

Instructions

  • Blend water, raw cashews, and honey until smooth.
  • Add the rest of the ingredients and blend until creamy.


**If this is too heavy try using nut mylk instead of water and nuts. Garnish with avocado, tomatoes, a drizzle of olive oil and serve!

YUM


Sunday, February 26, 2012

Rave Reviews ... Euphoria Loves Rawvolution

Before I left California I made sure to soak up as much of the beautiful scenery and open-minded lifestyles as possible. One of my favorite indulgences was in ordering The Box  from Euphoria Loves Rawvolution. Groupon had an amazing deal so I could finally afford The Box and I took full advantage.
If you are in the Southern California area (so jealous) then do yourself a favor and order this treasure trove. The items are posted online each week and they are typically items from his menu or cookbook.

Here I had pizza, eggless egg salad, broccolini salad, french onion soup, corn salad, and a few desserts that I can't quite remember because I ate them immediately.

So easy. So spoiled. So delicious. and so good for you, too.


Wednesday, February 22, 2012

RECIPE: super energy bites

I wanted something to take with us on our picnic yesterday. After kayaking in the sun and playing in the water all day these things did amazing things for me.

This is a delicious snack packed with good-for-you superfoods and energy. The superfoods do amazing things for your vitality and longevity (think antioxidants and enzymes) while the sugar in the agave provides a quick pick-me-up and the fat from the nuts and nut butter provide a sustaining energy. This also is incredibly filling, so 1-2 and you're set! Coffee? Who needs coffee?


Super Energy Bites

Ingredients
  • 1 cup nut mylk pulp (from nut mylk)
  • 1 tablespoon maca powder
  • 1 tablespoon bee pollen
  • 1 tablespoon spirulina
  • 2 tablespoons agave or maple syrup
  • 2 tablespoons macadamia nut butter
  • 2 tablespoons cacao powder
  • 1/4 cup dried goji berries
  • 1/4 cup cacao nibs
Instructions

  • Throw everything into a large bowl and mix thoroughly with your hands until everything sticks together easily (but not mushy). 
  • Add and subtract what you need to reach the desired consistency. 
  • Form balls with your hands and refrigerate immediately. 



Tuesday, February 21, 2012

RECIPE: red enhilada wraps

We visited a U-pick farm outside the city and we were able to finally feel some fresh air and fresh vegetables. We picked a bucket full of farm fresh beefsteak tomatoes. YUM.
Out of our bounty, I made some tomato wrappers and made enchiladas out of them for lunch today. Best fiesta style lunch, ever ...

Red Enchilada Wraps

Ingredients
  • 2-3 large beefsteak tomatoes, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon agave
Instructions
  • Put everything in a blender and blend until smooth. 
  • Spread batter out on a Teflex liner and dehydrate at 104 for about 6-8 hours, until dry but not crisp. 
  • No need to flip, just peel off and devour when done. 
  • You can cut this large square into whatever shapes or sizes to suit your cravings!


I took some of my jalapeño macademia spread and blended it with more water to make a cream ... I could have blended it more because it turned out thick and chunky ..

Stuff the wrapper with anything you want. Here I used avocado and leftover homemade salsa with leftover salad (lettuce, tomatoes, nutritional yeast, hemp seeds). 

The wrapper gives a sweet and tangy bite to the overall dish and is just fabulous. 

Enjoy!



Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Valentine's Day treat ... RAW cheesecake hearts

I'm no fan of Valentine's Day and my S.O. and I refuse to celebrate ... however, given the excuse to explore a new recipe, I'll celebrate any holiday.

I once came across this recipe at My New Roots and though essentially every raw cheesecake is made of the same ingredients I LOVED her layering technique. And though I was skeptical it would turn out as delicious as the store-bought or Planet Raw cheesecakes, I have to admit I am blown away and HOOKED.
Raw Creamy Cheesecake
(adapted from My New Roots)

Crust:
1/2 cup raw almonds (or your favorite nut)
5-6 Medjool dates, soaked for 15 minutes
¼ tsp. sea salt

Filling:
1 cup raw cashews, soaked overnight
juice of 1 lemon
the seeds of 1 whole vanilla bean (or 1 tsp. alcohol-free vanilla extract)
1/3 cup raw coconut oil, melted
1/3 cup maple syrup/agave
1 cup raspberries/strawberries

In a food processor mix the dates, almonds, and salt until it's as smooth or chunky as you'd like. The important thing is that it's sticky. If it doesn't stick, add a teaspoon of agave. Press the crust into either one large springform pan to make an even layer, or to make them like I did, press into the bottom of a cookie-cutter to make an even layer.

For the filling, drain the cashews and then throw all of the ingredients--except the berries--into a high speed blender (i.e. Blendtec, Vitamix) and blend until completely smooth. Pour about 2/3 of this mixture either onto the large cake base or among the four mini cakes. Use the remaining third of the batter and blend with the berries. Pour the remaining batter on top of the first two layers.

Place the cake(s) into the freezer to set. It took about two hours or so. Usually cake sets up much quicker but the berries have so much water in them that it made the tops a little runny, so it took a little bit longer.
SO SO good and how easy is that?

YUM


**Check out Sarah's website for her recipe if you're making a full cheesecake. I changed mine a bit to reduce the size because I made four mini-cakes. I also used strawberries instead of raspberries, though it has much of the same effect.


Friday, February 10, 2012

RECIPE: apple crepes with hazelnut chocolate cream

Growing up I loved Nutella. Now I love an even healthier hazelnut spread that is all raw and all packed with nutrients and omegas. This is one recipe I had to share immediately. 
RAW Apple Crepes
(adapted from Ani Phyo's Raw Food Essentials)

Ingredients 
  • 3 apples, peeled and chopped
  • 1/2 cup ground flax meal
  • 1/2 cup filtered water
  • 2 tablespoons of agave

Instructions 

  • Put the apples in the bottom of your high speed blender, then add the rest. 
  • Don't use too much agave as it changes the consistency of the crepe. 
  • Blend until smooth. 
  • Spread the batter evenly onto one Teflex sheet and dehydrate at 104 for 4-6 hours. 

I dehydrated this batch for about 5 hours then peeled it off the Teflex, flipped, and cut into four pieces then dehydrated for about 30 minutes.

Store in the fridge, if not eating right away.
RAW Chocolate Hazelnut Spread
(adapted from Ani Phyo's Raw Food Essentials)
1 cup hazelnuts (filberts)
2 tablesspoons coconut oil
2 tablespoons agave
1 tablespoon cacao powder
1-2 tablespoons filtered water (as needed)

Put the hazelnuts in a food processor and process until a butter forms. Scrape down the sides and mix the crumbs with the butter at the bottom as it goes until it is all smooth and creamy. Then add the coconut oil and the agave and process until well mixed. Add the cacao powder and mix well. Don't use too much cacao powder because it makes the butter crumbly and takes away from the "spread" factor. Add water, if needed (I needed it because I put one HEAPING tablespoon of cacao ... oops!).

For the crepes:

Spread the chocolate hazelnut butter onto the inside of the crepe then fill with sliced banana and strawberries. Roll like a burrito then cover with more bananas and strawberries. Drizzle with maple syrup or agave.

YUM




Thursday, February 9, 2012

RECIPE: avocado dill dressing

I LOVE finding exotic fruits and veggies and experimenting with them. This weekend I found these little guys in a basket with the label "Cameo Apples".
apple/pear/plum mystery fruit
I looked up "Cameo Apples" and they look nothing like this ... a mislabeled misfortune. These guys look pear-ish and apple-ish, so I took my knife to it like I would an apple. And WHOA, there was a pit in the middle!! So it must be an apple/pear/plum mystery fruit.

I decided to use them like I would an apple in a delicious farm salad with a delicious dressing I saw over at Kim Snyder's website.
Dreamy Creamy Avocado Dill Dressing
from Kimberly Snyder
1 avocado
1 clove of garlic
juice of one lemon
handful of fresh dill
1-2 dates, soaked (or 1-2 tablespoons of agave)
1/4 cup of water
1/2 teaspoon sea salt

Throw everything into a high speed blender and blend until creamy and beautiful. It will keep for a few days, if it goes uneaten that long.


In this salad I used spring mix, spinach, cucumber, apple-pear-plum mystery fruit, figs, baby tomatoes, and slices of avocado.

So simple and elegant and so YUM.

Clear Skin in the Kitchen / Pharmacy

One of my recent discoveries is the incredible powers of vinegar. Vinegar is used as the base in a lot of natural and at-home cleaners because of it's bacteria-killing properties, so why not try it on the skin?

The Acetic Acid in the vinegar helps draw out the bacteria in pimples but is gentle enough to not dry out the skin or irritate it (too much). I like to put some on a cotton ball and place on the pesky pimple or area. Within a day the area is cleared up ... unless it's a monster. Then it's a few days. It is also recommended to dilute the solution for sensitive skin, so play with it a bit and be careful. 

Happy beautiful clear radiant skin!

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

RECIPE: buckwheat crunch bowl

This was a let's-get-you-out-the-door and what-do-we-have-on-hand sort of morning. My husband had to be out a lot earlier than I did so I threw together this breakfast and decided it was a Win for the team.

Buckwheat Crunch
1 cup raw, dry buckwheat, soaked overnight or sprouted

Soak the buckwheat overnight, or sprout the buckwheat if you'd like. In this batch I had sprouted buckwheat. Stick in the dehydrator at 104 for a few hours until nice and crispy. Store in a glass jar and sprinkle on cereal and smoothies. 

SO EASY!

For this bowl I threw together a few items we had on hand: banana, apple, goji berries, buckwheat crunch, dried figs, and hazelnut mylk. Really quite tasty and a definite win for the last-minute team!

I was sprouting buckwheat for chocolate granola  and I had accidentally sprouted too much buckwheat. I took half the sprouts and dehydrated the little guys until they were nice and crisp. Now I sprinkle them on smoothies and cereal ...

You really can get creative with these guys. You can mix with date paste, cinnamon, apples, sunflower seeds, walnuts, chia seeds, WHATEVER, and then dehydrate to make a granola, as well.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

RECIPE: papaya acai smoothie

Papaya Açaí smoothie
1/2 large papaya (1 small)
2 bananas
1 packet of organic, fresh PURE Açaí
1 tablespoon MSM
1 tablespoon bee pollen 

Plop everything into the blender and give it a whirl. YUM

Papaya can do magic on your skin and Açaí is an incredible antioxidant. MSM is a great supplement for joints because it ups the lubrication in your body. This translates to a great boost in your skin and nails and hair, as well. 

** a note about Açaí packets, be sure to check the ingredients in these packets. Many brands are cute but they're not organic and they include added sugar, pasteurized Açaí, and preservatives. Make sure the ingredient list is short on your packets: Pure Organic Açaí Pulp.

Superfood: papaya


Nature has such an incredible way of providing the very best to us. I don't like to get caught up in the specific nutrients of different plants and products ... a whole plant based meal or diet is going to provide so many nutrients, enzymes, vitamins, and taste and all of it works together harmoniously... it is even more fascinating to understand exactly how divine a piece of fruit can be.
Papayas are my latest obsession. These are not so abundant on the farm so I felt a bit like Christopher Columbus, who called it the "fruit of the angels", when I first tasted this fruit. It is so so good and provides such incredible benefits to you, overall.

An even more interesting aspect of papaya is what it can do for you, externally. I'm a huge fan of roaming through the fridge and cupboards to find my latest skin treatment, and papaya can do just that. Papaya naturally has Alpha Hydroxy Acid in it ... you know, the coveted ingredient in so many over-the-counter face creams? This naturally occurring AHA can do wonders to your skin without harming it one bit. What I like to do--when my Significant Other is not around--is rub the inside of the peels on my face after I've scooped the fruit out for my morning smoothie. I let the AHA do its thing while I blend, clean up, and put everything away. After about five minutes I'm ready to rinse it off and enjoy my feast.

AHA is an incredible resource for skin renewal, aka fresh, bright skin. It is also even used to brighten skin, in extreme instances (which is another reason why I leave the papaya on my face for only five minutes). So it can help clear up dark spots, acne scars, and other random aging drags. Give it a go!

RECIPE: Hazelnut Mylk

Growing up I always enjoyed a large glass of milk with every meal. Breakfast and milk. Lunch and milk. Dinner and milk. I didn't even grow up in the midwest. Now, I still enjoy mylk, but this mylk is GOOD for you, delicious, creamy, and almost like a dessert.

I am so so excited to bring to you the simplest yet most divine recipe for any mylk I have ever tasted. Aside from Macadamia nuts (which sparks my interest in the mylk category...hmmm) hazelnuts really are one of my favorite nuts. They are so rich and creamy and sweet and absolutely perfect. I may never go back to almonds when I'm makin' my mylks ...

RAW Hazelnut Mylk

Ingredients
  • 1 cup soaked hazelnuts
  • 3 large dates, soaked for 15 minutes
  • 1 vanilla bean
  • 32 oz. pure, fresh coconut water (5-8 young coconuts)
  • a pinch of sea salt
Instructions

  • Drain the hazelnuts and put everything in the blender.
  •  Blend until completely creamy and frothy.
  • Pour into a nut mylk bag (over a bowl) and using your hands, squeeze out the mylk.
  • Store in the fridge.

Once everything is strained you are left with THREE fabulous things: 1) the best nut mylk you will ever taste 2) the best nut pulp you will ever be able to use 3) if you used coconut water from fresh coconuts, then the best coconut meat you will ever taste.

Super simple and so incredibly delicious. YUM.

** Just a note, I have a system for this process. It took me a few tries to get it down but I thought I'd share and hopefully save you the hassle. I place one giant bowl and one regular bowl in the sink. I strain the mylk into the giant bowl and then dump the pulp into the regular bowl. Then I use a funnel to pour the mylk into a container ... it's better aiming and less spillage.

Monday, February 6, 2012

Back to Basics

We visited the in-laws today at the beach and this is what they made for me.. aren't they incredible? 


As much as I love checking out new AH-mazing recipes, sometimes it feels so good just to get back to the basics.

Here all I have is Spring Mix, Spinach, sliced red onion, delicious ripe red tomato, Florida avocado, salt and pepper and one big bowl.

SO GOOD and SO simple ...

Pure, clean skin ...


One of my favorite discoveries for soft skin is oil. Yup, oil is my favorite go-to when it comes to soft skin, clear skin, radiant skin, or calm skin. My detoxing period lasted an unbearably long time during my transition and the evidence was right on my face. I have played with many different remedies but I always find myself returning to oil.

I rotate my oils, generally going back and forth between pure Olive Oil and pure Coconut Oil. Coconut Oil has antibacterial benefits, as well, because of the natural presence of Lauric Acid. So though it seems counter-intuitive to rub oil on your breakouts, it can actually calm your skin and combat the detox symptoms gently.

Olive oil is just one of my favorite feelings in the world when it comes to skin. It is fairly thick so I don't use it as often, but when I do, oh baby is it good. I wrote about how I use it here so check it out for ideas. Another great idea for olive oil is to use it in the shower with salt (my own little concoction) as a scrub, then let the water rinse it off. It leaves your skin soft and moisturized but doesn't leave it sticky. 

I also use an olive oil moisturizer from DHC, a beauty company. The virgin olive oil is prepared in a way that is perfect for skincare, so there's no experimentation in the kitchen needed. Because such high quality oils are pricey (see prices below, too) I can thank my momma for this oil as a Christmas gift ...

DHC Care Moisturizer

Natural Health Mag has a quick and dirty blurb about why oil is in fact one of the better options for your skin:

Natural Health Mag Beauty Blunders 
MISTAKE NO. 4 Over-cleansing and exfoliating
WHY EXPERTS ARE FROWNING You’re stripping your skin of the oils it needs to function properly. Over-cleansing skin leads to premature wrinkles, says Mirran Raphaely, CEO of Dr. Hauschka Skin Care, who explains it this way: “Using harsh exfoliators and heavy cleansers on your skin every day creates an unhealthy dependency—your skin forgets how to take care of its own moisture needs.” We remove oil thinking that it’s the problem. In reality, the more oil you remove, the more your skin works to replace it—creating more oiliness. “Like cures like, so a little bit of a healthy, plant-based oil on the skin helps the skin stay balanced,” Raphaely says. “It may sound counterintuitive, but once you try this method, you’ll never go back,” she adds. So, exfoliate just twice a week, and choose the right product for your skin type. Young, healthy skin will respond to any type of scrub; if you’ve got thinner, mature skin, opt for a fruit enzyme, which gently sloughs off dead cells.
Try: Bobbi Brown Cleansing Oil ($38; bobbibrown.com) dissolves makeup and leaves skin super smooth without stripping skin. /Lancome Crème Douceur Cream-to-Oil Massage Cleanser ($25; lancome-usa.com) is applied like a moisturizer, then is transformed into oil.

Saturday, February 4, 2012

RECIPE: sprouted wheat bagels

One of my favorite meals, ever, is breakfast. Always. So naturally, I am constantly exploring new breakfast ideas. I have finally discovered RAW bagels. They are so incredibly easy and so satisfying, I don't know how I managed mornings before them.
RAW Sprouted Wheat Bagels

Ingredients
  • 1/2 cup dry soft wheat berries (sprouted berries double in volume)
  • 1 tablespoon agave
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
Instructions

  • Soak the wheat berries anywhere from 5 hours to overnight. I soak mine overnight and rinse them in the morning. 
  • If you have a sprouter, spread the berries out and rinse several times a day for a couple days until the tails are about the same length as the berry. 
  • If you don't have a sprouter, no worries, just spread them out on paper towels (on a plate or a dehydrating sheet...but not to dehydrate) and cover with damp paper towels. Rinse several times a day for a couple days, as well.
  • Once they are nice and cute toss them into either a Vitamix or a food processor and add the agave and sea salt. 
  • Give it a whirl until it turns into this magnificent dough-like consistency. It's incredible, it really does turn into a dough.
  • Next, grab handfuls of the dough and shape into mini-bagels. You can probably go larger than the picture above but I didn't want them to sour in the dehydrator so I kept them nice and small.
  • Line your bagels on a mesh sheet and dehydrate for 2 hours at 145 degrees (internal temperature never reaches 145, however, it is important to get the berries warm immediately to prevent souring). 
  • After first two hours, reduce temperature to about 118. Dehydrate until they are crunchy on the outside and doughy on the inside (about 3-4 hours).

SO easy. SO delicious. And perfect for when you are really craving the carbs.

Friday, February 3, 2012

RECIPE: macro bowl with dragon sauce

I think the people at G-Living really are pulling on my heart strings ... I have discovered yet another DELISH dish that excites me to my core.

Raw Macro Bowl with G-Living Dragon Sauce
adapted from G-living
Ingredients

For the bowl:
  • Julienned Carrots
  • Julienned Zucchini (marinated in sea salt for 20 minutes)
  • Raw Sauerkraut 
  • Wakame (soaked and rinsed)
  • Sprouts
  • Shredded Cabbage
For the sauce:
  • 1/2 cup Nutritional Yeast
  • 1/3 Olive Oil
  • 1/4 cup Maple Syrup
  • 1/4 cup Tamari
  • 1/4 cup Water
  • 1/4 cup Raw Tahini
  • 1 clove of Garlic
Instructions

  • For the sauce, combine everything in a high speed blender and blend until creamy and smooth. 
  • Arrange the macro bowl ingredients in a large bowl and drizzle with sauce. 

I saved the rest of the sauce for salads and future macro bowls. AH-mazing. 

SO easy and so filling.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

RECIPE: banana nice cream with berries

Sometimes I can't help it, I crave a good brain freeze. And right now, all I want is to mix every delicious fruit Mother Nature has given me into a beautiful, beautiful bowl of goodness.





RAW Banana Cream and Berries

Ingredients
  • 1-2 large bananas, frozen
  • 1 tablespoon of maple syrup, if desired
  • a dash of cinnamon
  • 1 cup of berries, to add
Instructions

  • Whirl everything (except the berries) in a food processor until a creamy frozen treat forms. 
  • Stick in the freezer for 20 minutes if needed.
  • Toss with your favorite berries and eat!


And that's it! If you have a Vitamix, use it. Otherwise, a good old-fashioned food processor works beautifully. Break up the frozen bananas a bit so they process evenly. Process until smooth and creamy, just like a soft serve. Some add nut mylk and others add cacao (and even nut butters!). Play with it, make it your own, and listen to your own carnal cravings.

I like to add strawberries and blueberries to mine, like pictured above.

How easy was that?!

Addicted to LIFE


These are my top reasons why I love life:

1) Every morning I can wake up and do whatever the fuck I want. Yup.
2) Coffee.
3) Discovering variations of said coffee.
4) Grocery shopping is nature’s way of spoiling me.
5) Chia seeds.
6) Pillow-top mattresses.
7) The more I know the more I realize I don’t know anything at all.
8) Flowers.
9) Jewish holidays and the peace of LA that ensues.
10) Nature. Have you ever seen the ocean, the mountains, and downtown LA all in one gaze? Pretty amazing.
11) My body is capable of many impressive things.
12) So is my mind.
13) Memories.
14) Really funny things.
15) Kid Cudi.
16) Cacoa.
17) My Blendtec.
18) Cuddling.
19) Pre- or post-cuddle activities.
20) I am.


And if I can accomplish any variation of those activities in one single day, then it’s a good day. In fact, why don’t I make a routine of it?

RECIPE: creamy avocado pesto

I LOVE avocados and almost any raw foodie shares the same affinity for the dreamy, creamy fruit. I usually use it as a star player in any salad or dish I prepare, relying on the full fat to bring all of the flavors together. Naturally, avocados have found a way into my pesto, as well.


Creamy Avocado Pesto
(Serves 2-3)

Ingredients
  • 1 Avocado
  • 1 handful of fresh basil
  • 1 handful of fresh spinach (about 2 cups)
  • 1-2 cloves of garlic
  • 4-5 slices of sundried tomatoes (soaked if too hard to process)
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 package of Seatangle Kelp noodles

Instructions

  • In either a Vitamix or a food processor blend everything until perfectly dreamy and creamy (except noodles!). 
  • Serve over Kelp Noodles. 
  • For the noodles, simply put in a bowl and pour warm water cover them to loosen them up. Once your pesto is ready the noodles should be ready as well. I like to prepare this the night before and let the pesto marinate the noodles, so by lunchtime everything is wonderfully soft and creamy.


In the picture above I served with a sprinkle of Nutritional Yeast and a small side salad.

So easy and even better than carbo-loading!