Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Eat Your Greens

Take THAT nasty Doritos!
So many recipes to post! This past weekend I spent a lot of time making snacks. Here is a spicy take on the classic Cheezy Kale Chip. Most recipes for Kale chips involve soaked, then pureed cashews. I've made that version, it wasn't anything to write home about. Being allergic to cashews, I'm no stranger to finding substitutes. However, why use expensive, heavy nuts when you don't have to? Before discovering the 'raw' version of these chips, I use to coat the kale in olive oil and sprinkle with salt. Simple.

My take on the cheezy kale chip is SPICY! I love spicy food, anything with a kick. I figured being cold, wet and tired camping would make these a really special treat.  Ok, if you run screaming from anything suggesting spice, like indian food, mexican sombreros, valentines/santa lingerie, this may not be for you. Just a salty chip kinda person? That's all you have to add: olive oil and salt. The less olive oil the better as it will not dehydrate fully and you may not get the crisp you are jonesing for.
What a Beauty
Kinectic Kale (har har)
2-3 heads Kale (curly, dinosaur, I use tuscan.. anything works)
1-2 Tbs Olive Oil
2-3 Tbs Nutritional Yeast (google it.. so cheeezy)
1/4 tsp Chipotle Powder (so important)
1/4 tsp Cumin
Pinch of Chili powder and cayenne and salt
Water or almond milk as needed to make a paste.. creamy salad dressing consistency) 

Stir it up (lil darlin'! Bob Marley fans?) ! Have chopped Kale in a large bowl. Keep in mind kale will shrink considerably in the dehydrator (yes! you can make these in the oven! See below). Spoon a little of the mixture at a time, stirring in-between. Taste one and alter the spices to your liking. I kind of just throw mine together in a bowl... so the estimates above are, yeah, estimates.
Coated and Ready to Go!
Spread onto mesh sheet, dehydrate for 2 hours or so at 104F. Check often. You want these babies as crispy as a potato chip!
If baking: Spread onto baking sheet, 10-15 minutes @ 350F
Enjoy! I made lots of different veggie chips; posts to come! 

Monday, May 30, 2011

GRRR-EAT Granola!

Na na na  Nola
My dehydrator has been very busy the last few days as I load up on non-perishables yummies for an upcoming 5 day kayak trip. Don't have a dehydrator? If you live in a warmish place, you can make and use this awesome sun dryer. I know for a fact it works in say Arkansas. You'll use zero electricity and it is really cool to see the sun make your food! You can also use your oven on a low temp and just bake this. That might impart a fabulous toasted nut flavor! I haven't tried it like that with this particular recipe.

My cousin was very curious about how I make granola at home. There are many ways!

I adapted this recipe from a book I have called Raw Food Real World by Matthew Kenney and Sarma Melngailis It is NO fail and the combo of vanilla, maple, orange and cranberry is gourmet!

I follow the recipe pretty closely, adding 1/2 cup of sprouted buckwheat, omitting the lemon, reducing the Maple Syrup to 1/4 cup (vs 1/2) and the salt to 1 tsp (vs 2 tsp)
Don't you want to pick off that almond!?
Maple Cranberry Granola

1-3 Apples
1 1/2 Cup Date Paste (about 6 medjools pitted, soaked, processed into paste)
1/4 C Maple Syrup
2 Tbs Orange Zest (important! I used a Minneola to zest)
1/2 tsp Ground Ginger
1 Tbs Vanilla
1 tsp Cinnamon
1 tsp Salt
1/2 C Sunflower Seeds (soaked 2 hrs or so)
1 1/2 C Almonds (soaked overnight)
1 C Pecans (soaked for 2 hours)
1 C Pumpkin Seeds (soaked for 2 hours)
1 C Dried Cranberries

So, there is a little prep work involving soak time. After that, it's E A S Y!
Process the dates, add the Maple Syrup, Spices, Zest, then pour the rest of the ingredients into the food processor, PULSE and stir/check for consistency often. You don't want it total mush, but not too many big chunks.. just think granola!

Spread/drop onto smooth dehydrator trays. Let dry at 104 overnight, then remove from the smooth trays and place onto the mesh. At this point you can break up the pieces a bit. Dehydrate another couple hours or until crisp to your liking. This particular recipe is not cereal crunchy, but more like a chewy granola bar. Delicious! Enjoy!

I had a lot of almond pulp that needed to get used before my trip.. so I invented a granola, which is more like cereal, really crunchy! I guess it's not much different than most almond pulp granolas I make, except maybe it doesn't have a zillion ingredients. It tried going for a walnut raisin theme.. and of course I couldn't help but add on to that. I cannot stop eating it!  I wasn't so optimistic while tasting the batter, but it turned out amazing. My new favorite for sure.
Jo's Almond Cookie Crunch
2 C Almond Pulp
1/2 C Buckwheat (sprouted)
1/3 C Soaked Walnuts
1/4 C Raisins
1/8 C Goji Berries
1/4 C Shredded Coconut
2 Tbs Maple Syrup
1 tsp Cinnamon
1 Tbs Vanilla
1/4 tsp Salt
2 1/2 Tbs Flax meal
4 Tbs Water

Just pulse together in food processor, spread on trays as in the recipe above. It is SO crunchy! The raisins, cinnamon and salt make it taste like an oatmeal cookie. This batch is seriously not making it into the dry bag for my trip :( I'm making more tomorrow! haha I've had it on chia pudding, as cereal and as an all day munchie. Enjoy!

Gettin' Hungry?

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Puddin' Love

Pudding for Breakfast?
Between runs and work I've been 'uncooking' up a storm! It's harder to eat just veggies/fruit here, as I've said before; so I rely on more dehydrated foods to fill up with goodies. Sundays in particular the kitchen gets trashed! Today I made raw granola, raw 'bread,' flax crackers and a double batch of almond milk.. oh yeah.. and CHIA PUDDING! Mmmmm. I made the pudding this morning as my pre-run fuel. I made a LOT of it! I'm about to finish it off. Yum. I was telling my Aunt about the many wonderful things you can make with Chia and they are all waiting for recipes. As a kid I used to LOVE Tapioca pudding (any pudding except chocolate really) out of the J.E.L.L.O. Box. Last year for a potluck we made REAL Tapioca pudding, it was indian style, and wow, it was amazing. Chia is similar to tapioca. The farther in advance you make it, the more puddin'gy it gets.

Yer Tis:
1 Cup Almond Milk (I make mine unsweetened)
2 Heaping Tbs Chia
1/8 tsp-1/4 tsp pure Vanilla Extract
1 Cup full of whatever goodies you want.. berries, buckwheat groats, granola, shredded coconut etc.)
Stevia or whatever to taste...

Ok, the first one I made is my usual vanilla pudding.

So stir Chia into the milk with a fork. Be sure to stir after 10 minutes or so to avoid clumps.. then just let it sit and do it's thing! Each Chia seed will gel up. Stir again, place in the fridge. Once chilled, add your favorite toppings and enjoy! I stirred in a tiny bit of dried Stevia.

If you have a thing for Banana's, add 1/8 cup more milk, and 1/2 a ripe banana, maybe an extra splash of vanilla and maple syrup and you've got naner pudding.

If you like Chocolate, reduce the vanilla a bit, add 1/2 tsp of Carob, Cocao or Cocoa powder.. sprinkle in chips and enjoy! May want to sweeten this one.
Variation: I stirred in some raspberry chunks really well and added more coconut. SO good and with lots of fruit you don't need any sweetener.

Looks like a Peppermint Frosty Martini doesn't it!?

Friday, May 27, 2011

Breakfast Blueberry Smoothie

I change up smoothie recipes every few days.  Usually I can't get enough of one particular combo for two or three days, then I'm ready to change. Right now I'm making one I happened to make a lot last Spring. It's loaded with carbs, fiber and protein, so it makes an awesome post run meal. Oh yeah, and it's YUMMY!

Breakfast Blueberry Smoothie
1 cup of Blueberries (frozen)
1/4 cup Raspberries (frozen)
1 Heaping Tbs Flax Seed (ground into meal first)
1 Heaping Tsp Wheat Germ
1 Tsp Chia Seed
3/4 cup (or more) Almond Milk (homemade recipe on this blog!)
1 Tbs of your favorite protein powder (optional)

Blend and Enjoy! Nothing too special, just lots of blueberry love.

Back in school I was really into Spirutein. I still like it, I'd just rather have straight Spirulina. However,  I get tired of everything tasting like Spirulina, so sometimes I leave it out and use Vega or pea protein powder. But you can always just double up on the Wheat Germ, which is 28% protein.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Spring Cabbage Slaw

Picnic Anastasia Island
While I was in Florida, I indulged in fresh produce allll day long. Florida Bananas, Watermelon, Cantaloupe, Blueberries, Strawberries, Peaches, Tangerines, Grapefruit, Kale, Squash, etc. etc. Oh my gosh, the list goes on. I ate SO much fruit. It was heaven. I browsed the Farmer's market listening to live music for well over an hour shopping.

This tangerine tree to the left is at my Aunt's house. I even brought some grapefruits from her trees home with me. MMMmm.  Well, now I'm back in Alaska and produce is a little harder to get. Much less LOCAL produce. So, my diet comes back to a lot of root veggies and greens. Which is great, yes. But I do miss the fresh fruits in a bad way. All of our berries are frozen, our bananas are the conventional gassed kind, and watermelon.. basically doesn't exist. We do get a lot of produce from Washington (Full Circle Farms) and California. We can get greens from the neighboring farm (or from our own once they are ready). This area is definitely bountiful in berries during summer. Looking forward to that! It was much easier to keep a raw food diet in Florida though. Now I'm eating sprouted grain tortilla's and eggs again (loaded with raw veggies) when I'm feeling slack. I definitely rely on more dehydrated raw foods here. I definitely feel the difference in my energy. I ate 5 various citrus fruits alone yesterday. Which are $2.77 lb here. So, that was rather indulgent. It's so much more expensive to eat produce here. :(
Last night I made a delicious Red Cabbage Slaw. I generally avoid all sugar not found in fruits/dates etc. But I did use a bit of Agave in this. I found some very interesting (and disheartening) info on Agave and how your body metabolizes it similar to HFCS. Who knows. For now, until I have time to research it more, I'm cutting it out.

Delicious and Beautiful!

Spring Cabbage Slaw
1/2 Red Cabbage sliced into thin shred
1 Carrot Shred
1/8 cup Raisins (soaked)
1 Leaf Kale Shred
1/4 cup Cubed Cucumber

2 Tbs Red Wine Vinegar (or ACV)
1 Drizzle of Olive Oil (or sesame if your feeling like asian slaw)
2 Tbs Onion Chopped
1 Clove Garlic
1/4 Tsp Celery Seed or Salt
3-4 Cranks of Ground Blk Pepper
1/8 Tsp of salt (or more to taste)
1 squirt of Agave Nectar (could use honey)

Process all dressing ingredients until onion is tiny.

Mix all veggies in a bowl, add dressing, stir. Let sit for 10 minutes at least in fridge. Enjoy!
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