"Good chefs, like artists, are visionaries. You have to have a vision of the taste, the look, the smell of your masterpiece; you hold it in your mind and make it materialize."

Onid Jatteri

Monday, August 31, 2009

Camp fare...

Sitting around the campfire doesn't necessarily mean hotdogs and s'mores. Although that's what the punks were eating, I seem to have pretty much lost any desire for such "campy" things - although I have to admit, they still SMELL yummy!

No, my tastebuds have turned over a new leaf. Here's an interesting quote from Healing with Living Foods: "Did you know your taste buds change every 250 hours? That’s ten days. Taste buds are clusters of 50 to 100 cells, with a taste pore at the apex of each bud. Nerve fibers connect your buds to your brain.
As old cells die and new ones are born, the pores adjust to the shape of the molecules you’re eating."

So literally, my taste buds have turned over a new leaf! I'm finding this very intriguing, because that little info bite seems to explain why I don't have cravings for sugar, cooked carbs and so on.

Camp Purple, a three-day outing for some friends and family here at the cabin, had all the usual accoutrements: games, songs, riding, educational activities - and food.

My kitchen being just steps from the campfire helped a bunch. I had a fridge stocked with fruits, veggies, sprouted grains and nuts, and of course my trusty blender. So my camp days started as usual with a green smoothie, and segued into salads and other noshs.

This salad, a "throw-together", had romaine and leafy lettuces, sprouted quinoa and mung beans, fresh from the garden tomatoes, all dressed up with a "throw-together" dressing. I'm good at throwing things. Here's the dressing - approximately:

Ginger Tahini dressing

Blend smooth: 1/2 c. tahini, 1 T. Braggs Liquid Aminos, 1-2 cloves garlic, 1 tsp. grated fresh ginger, 1 tsp. agave. Enough water to make desirable pouring consistency - a couple tablespoons maybe.

I didn't miss the hotdogs at all.

And the "fire therapy" - gazing into flames and glowing coals, letting the sounds, scents, and ambience of the camp flow around me, was dessert...

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Green Smoothie Challenge...and more

I'm participating in a 2-week Green Smoothie Challenge. When I get interested in something, I have a compulsion to learn all I can (within reason) about the subject - and green smoothies are my current passion!

Rather than re-create the wheel, here are some posts from other greenies, with info and encouragement. I find myself nodding in agreement as I read through...

"This last year I discovered the green drink, and now my day just isn't the same when I don't start it out with my GREEN DRINK. It all started when I read the book GREEN FOR LIFE (Victoria Boutenko).

My favorite recipe is 2-3 ripe bananas, 1 apple, 1 cup of juice; 2 cups of ice, and about 1 lb of spinach. Yes, I said ONE POUND of spinach. I mix this in a Vita Mix, and it is heavenly! It might look green, but it tastes like a fruit smoothie. °Ü°

1. Green drinks are very healthy. The best tasting ratio is about 60% - ripe organic fruit mixed with about 40% - organic green vegetables.

2. Green drinks are easy to digest. When blended well, all the valuable nutrients in these fruits and veggies become homogenized, or divided into such small particles that it becomes easy for the body to assimilate these nutrients; the green drink literally start to get absorbed in your mouth.

3. Green drink, as opposed to juices, are a complete food because they still have fiber.

4. Green drinks taste so yummy! With a ratio of fruits to veggies as 60/40 the fruit taste dominates the flavor, yet at the same time the green vegetables balance out the sweetness of the fruit.

5. By consuming two or three cups of green drink daily (I usually drink the whole 2 quarts in one day), you will consume enough of greens for the day to nourish your body, and they will be well assimilated. Many people do not consume enough of greens, even those on a raw food diet. The molecule of chlorophyll has only one atom that makes it different from a molecule of human blood. According to teachings of Dr. Ann Wigmore, to consume chlorophyll is like receiving a healthy blood transfusion.

6. Green smoothies are perfect food for children of all ages, including babies of six or more months old when introducing new food to them after mother’s milk. Of course you have to be careful and slowly increase the amount of green drink to avoid food allergies.

7. Regular consumption of Green drinks forms a good habit of eating greens. Many people say that after a couple of weeks of drinking green drink, they started to crave and enjoy eating more greens.

8. There are many ideas for your green creations. Some of my favorite greens to add to green drink: parsley, spinach, celery, kale and romaine. My favorite fruits for green drink are: pears, peaches, nectarines, bananas, mangoes and apples. Strawberries and raspberries taste superb in green smoothies, when combined with ripe bananas.

So go ahead now, give it a try! " °Ü° (The Baby Catcher - blog)

"Did you know that through one green smoothie you can consume 5-8 servings of fruits and vegetables? Did you also know that eating green smoothies is one of the easiest way to digest the full nutrients of fruits and vegetables?

Green smoothies are a wonderful alternative, as opposed to juices, of absorbing the full potential by retaining the entire whole form of the fruit/vegetable, thus receiving all the fiber. They can assist in boosting energy, building your immune system, detoxing impurities, and loosing weight. Greens are rich in magnesium and alkaline minerals like calcium and are superb in their Omega-3 unsaturated fat content. Believe it or not, greens are one of the richest sources of protein.

Another one of my new year goals was to begin eating more greens in our diet. What better way than to include these in our morning smoothies? We serve kefir smoothies three times a week for breakfast, so my desire was to discreetly begin adding some nutritious greens to the mix. I have found it to be incredibly simple, delicious, and so much easier to eat than a large salad (especially for the kids). Not only can you really not taste the greens at all, but you are getting a huge boost in nutrition.

Greens are especially frugal and thus another good encouragement to begin consuming them.

We have stayed amazingly healthy over this past month since beginning the green smoothie pursuit, even when we have been exposed to some nasty illnesses around us. Could it be?" ( Passionate Homemaking -website)

"Dr. Wilstatter of the University of Pennsylvania, found that the elements making up the chlorophyll in plants are approximately the same elements from which red blood cells are constructed. There, he pronounced chlorophyll the ideal food medicine.

Chlorophyll cleanses, heals and builds the body cell. It banishes anemic conditions quickly, reduces blood pressure, and aids the heart action. It frees clogged arteries, smoothes out arthritic conditions, and improves peristalsis (the contractions that occur along the digestive track, moving the food along in the digestive process).
As a result of a diet rich in chlorophyll, health is improved and a happier mental outlook is experienced." Dr. Ann Wigmore, Recipes for Life

This site ( ) is wonderful to explore, with info, recipes, etc. It will keep you reading, and maybe even dusting off that blender!

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Brunch smoothie

A green smoothie is recommended as the “ blast of nutrition and energy that helps power you through the day.” I can attest to that - I'm loving my morning greenies, and often have enough to put in a second glass to save for an afternoon pick-me-up.

This delicious smoothie is low fat, low sodium, low cholesterol, heart healthy, gluten-free, vegetarian, vegan, and raw! What more could you want...
It also makes enough to serve your brunch buddies.

The Brunch Smoothie Yield: 4 servings

In blender:
2 bananas
3 oranges, peeled, quartered
4 cups cold water

Blend smooth.

Add: 1 bunch romaine

Blend again, until smoothly green.

Serve immediately, in your fancy glasses. Garnish with an orange slice on the rim of each glass. Presentation is everything, you know...

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Bottoms up!

The fancy-top bottles ( have made it to the brewing site - my kitchen. After a lesson from friend Laurie (see what she gets me into??) on how to put the wire and cap on correctly (and how to get it UN-capped so I can actually get the beverage OUT of the bottle - sheesh), I embarked on the bottling phase of this experiment.

The first to be honored with the new bottles was the batch of ginger-lemon-honey kombucha. Love those bits of ginger! After straining them out of the brew, I nibbled on them all afternoon - yum.

A few pieces of equipment - funnel, small sieve - and now for the big finale - into the bottle!

I was flabbergasted at the flavor of this, my very first bottled booch batch (say that three times fast). It was almost perfect, better than my beloved ginger ale because it's actually good for me. Weehaw!

See those bubbles? That's the buzz, baby!

Just kidding, it's just fizzy and yummy and gingery - honest.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Green Creme'

An avocado made it's way into the green smoothie this was lonesome, sitting way over there in it's basket, getting overly ripe. I took pity on it, and impulsively chucked it into the whirling Vita-Mix that had already turned a frozen banana and a nicely ripe mango into a lusciously smooth base for this morning's kale smoothie.

Wow! That mixture went from smooth to decadently creamy in a heartbeat! It also thickened, so in went a little more water along with the kale, then a couple leaves of red lettuce just for fun.

What a filling, yummy breakfast treat! I may be buying those really soft avos now, just for a Green Creme' now and then!

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Boochie koochie!

OK,OK, it looks suspicious, but it's all legal - honest. That's BOOCH, not HOOCH on the label.

It's all Laurie's fault. Or at least her friend's fault. She had some SCOBY to share. What? Yeah, that was my thought, too. I had run across kombucha here and there, bottled in the health food sections I like to browse. But it was too pricey to spring for a taste test. Had heard good things about it, though. So, I was willing to experiment.

"Kombucha is an all natural health beverage made with a nutrient solution of tea and sugar to which a SCOBY is added. SCOBY is an acronym for Symbiotic Culture of Bacteria and Yeast. It is then fermented for 7-14 days.
Kombucha is naturally carbonated and has a host of healing properties including probiotics, alkalinizing the blood, detoxifying the liver, increased metabolism, improved digestion, rebuilding connective tissue and many others." - Kombucha Kamp

The SCOBY is also called the "mushroom". That's the strange floating stack-of-pancakes-looking thing in the jar. Those are layers of SCOBY from various brew cycles. Following some nebulous instruction and lots of reading online, I filled a gallon jar about 3/4 with some brewed green tea. Added the mushroom along with it's attendant liquid as a starter. Put some cheese cloth over the top secured with a rubber band, set it in a warmish corner and tried not to look at it too often. It's weird stuff.

Now you can use the brew at whatever stage it suits your taste - literally. One suggestion was, after about a week, to stick a straw below the mushroom and take a sip to test-taste the 'booch. I just couldn't do it. It was scary. But it did smell good. I gave it a sniff every couple of days, to see how it was doing. Like I knew what it was supposed to be doing...

It didn't help that Laurie had described the mushroom as sort of smelling like old socks. I just couldn't get past that mental connection...

Finally, it's been two weeks. The kombucha will turn to vinegar if it goes too long. I like vinegar, but I wanted to do this right, give it a chance to do it's healthy thing for me. So this morning I bit the bullet, and got out some jars. The slippery, rubbery mushroom was stashed along with some of it's liquid in another jar, and refrigerated - which will keep it inactive until I decide if I can handle this stuff.

I poured a small glass - and set it aside. Got out some more ingredients. Washed the jars. Delay, delay. OK, gutless, get it over with. A tiny sip. Another sip. HEY! IT'S FIZZY! Just like the instructions said! Wow! And, it is tasty! A sort of sweet/tangy flavor, very refreshing and fun.

Then I poured the rest of the brew into quart jars, for further experimenting. One jar has some fresh ginger, a slice of lemon, and some honey - I'm hoping for ginger ale. The other jar has slices of fresh juicy peaches. The idea is, the shot of new sugar will get the yeasties going again, for more fizz.

Laurie has some fancy bale-top bottles for me, to put the finished product in. We're going to enjoy our kombucha just like the big kids, now!

(if you are curious, there's a ton of info online; here's a good site for further exploration: )

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Mayo magic

A quick snack I'm taking advantage of while there are small, tender summer squash to nosh on. The crispy babies are the platform for a new love - almond mayonnaise - or "Almondaise", for short. (I found this in Traci Seller's Transformational Kitchen recipes - worth exploring at

where you can order her wonderful e-books.)

Here's the very SIMPLE how-to:
1. Soak 1/2 c. whole raw almonds in water for 4 or more hours. Drain the water off, put the almonds in the blender.
2. Add 1/2 c. water and process until a smooth paste forms.
3. With the blender still running, drizzle in a thin stream of olive oil - 1 cup of light olive oil (or extra virgin if you really really love the stronger flavor). The mixture will be thick, with a bead of oil riding on top of the churning mixture.
4. While still running, pour in 2-3 T. fresh squeezed lemon juice, blend one more minute. You may have to stop and push mixture down, then reblend.

Store in lidded jar in the fridge. It keeps well, about a week - if it lasts that long! This wonder food can be used in all the usual mayo ways, fill in for dairy in casseroles, or eat with a spoon (I'm guilty)!

Sprinkled with a few strategic pine nuts, this is an outrageously tasty, nutritious, fresh and very simple snack. The small container travels in my little lunch bag with an icepack and a couple of sliced squash - no excuses for not eating raw while running errands, and a satisfying crunchy beach snack while others are eating chips and dip!

I'm all about keeping it simple.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009


A gardener has the opportunity to develop a very special relationship with the world of plants. If the gardener is observant, mindful, forgiving, curious, enthusiastic, adventurous, spiritual, and willing to experiment, the green ones will reward with health, peace of body and mind, and friendship.

As I look at the photo above, I see beets, kohlrabi, dill, marigolds, millet, and a few "weeds" doing their job of distracting some of the leaf marauders, and especially,I see a symbiotic relationship. That relationship includes me.

My garden tolerates my attempts at organizing, teases me by varying production and maturity dates, undermines weed control, and gives me something I can find nowhere else: a personal relationship with the food I eat.

Eating raw has further enhanced my considerable love of gardening. My enjoyment of an individual plant now includes a deeper knowledge of it's potential to improve my life at a cellular level. It's exciting, satisfying, and fulfilling.

I feel alive at a deeper level. I know my health is improving. When I harvest a beet, or carrot, or yes, even a zuchinni, I offer a word of thanks and appreciation to the spirit of that plant for it's place in my life. I feel like I'm more than a plant-tender; I have a caring partner.

It's a good feeling.

Monday, August 17, 2009

The other end....

When I had a working juicer, I put my share of carrots into a glass. I don't recall using the green end, though. Probably because that particular juicer didn't do greens well.

Now I can use the other end of those carrots! There is a yummy salad sorta dish that I make with grated carrots and grated fresh beets - the green end usually made it out to the horses, or goats. Now, the greenies go into the VitaMix!

This morning's green smoothie: fresh pineapple, half an orange juiced, and a good handful of carrots tops. I was a little tenative with the first sip - afterall, there was no banana for sweet creaminess. But the pineapple carried the job - what a surprise, a fresh greeny sweetly pinappley flavor!

Sunday, August 16, 2009

The Oatmeal Challenge

I love browsing through the raw blogs and sites, so much info, so many wonderful recipes and ideas - and I can only eat so much in a given day! I'm just not hungry more than twice a day, it seems...

Anyway, found this fun post on oatmeal. It's always been one of my "comfort foods". The ideas shared in the comments take plain 'ol oatmeal to another level, with some tasty and thrifty suggestions. Worth a read:

Smooth moves...

I'm enjoying the green smoothies soooo much! Fresh, fresh, fresh! So full of nutrients, they almost jump out of the glass! Energy, energy, energy!

AND SIMPLE - my first rule!

One of the tenets of green smoothies is to vary your ingredients, especially the greens, so that you don't have the same smoothie twice in a row. That is definately not hard to do - the combination prospects are literally endless. Use your favorite fruits, add some greens. Presto!

So to help me keep track, I'm adding a sidebar on what my smoothie of the day is, a week at a time. Some days there may even be two. There will be repeats of favorites, of course - right now they ALL are - but with a list in front of me (posted on the fridge), I will keep the juggling going.

Some TIPS: blend fruits and any liquids used first; then add greens. Keep some bananas frozen at all times, and other fruits as you can.

You don't need fancy equipment - a knife, cutting board, and basic blender will work just fine. I juice the old-fashioned way - by hand. Squeeze the stuffings out of those lemons and oranges :)

One more note: smoothies are FOOD, not beverages to be slugged down. You risk experiencing the 'green-apple quick-step' if you drink too much too fast. Give your system time to work with the smoothie - "CHEW" each mouthful a few times, to mix in saliva and begin digestion of this easy-to-assimulate super nutritious food.

So give a green smoothie a try - you'll be surprised how tasty, refreshing and filling they are.

And your body will rejoice!

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Peachy Green Smoothie!

Unless you are in with the "green groupies", you probably didn't know that TODAY is International Green Smoothie Day. Who knew?
Not only a "green smoothie", but international, no less!

As part of my raw adventure, I've been playing with green smoothies all week, even before I knew about this momentous occasion. In case you are wondering, a green smoothie is basically a fruit smoothie sans milk products, with a good helping of greens blended in. The basic ratio starts at about 60% fruit, 40% greens, until you get the hang of them, then you can go for the green.

The fruit masks the greeny taste quite well, making a luscious smoothie with a soothing green color. You may find yourself scouring the markets for overripe bananas, just to freeze for these amazing "meal in a glass" creations . Frozen fruit makes the smoothies thick, cold and creamy, without any clogging-your-system milk or yogurt.

I went to the Green Bay Farmer's Market early this morning, and scored a lot of fresh local fruit, and some gorgeous Michigan peaches. So my recipe of the day is: "Peachy Green Smoothie":

In your blender (love my VITAMIX!!), plop a cut up ripe peach (no need to peel if you are comfortable that it hasn't been sprayed - just give it a good wash), a frozen banana (chunked), and about 1/4 cup water. Blend well, then throw in a handful of baby spinach. Blend smooth. Pour into your favorite clear glass, garnish with a peach slice, put your feet up and ENJOY! Savor the icey smoothness, the sparkle of peach and creaminess of banana. You won't even notice the spinach, promise.

Other than the green hue...

Viva International Green Smoothie Day!

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Raw reality

I'm celebrating one week of eating mostly raw foods most of the time. Celebrating, because of the remarkable differences I'm noting. With help from the wonderfully fresh veggies and fruits from my garden, I have enjoyed a grand new adventure, one that is going to have lasting impact on my life.

Having colon cancer is a real wake-up call. Step by step, I've been working towards decifering what will be the most supportive way of eating for my particular body system.

Recently I went through almost two months of waking up nauseated. I think I've figured it out, as I reported in EarthHeart. Now, with the raw foods (including dandelions!), I haven't had a single incident of nausea. Things seem to be working as designed.

Insomnia has been a plague for many years. I've slept soundly every night, all week. Celebration, for sure!

My energy level has leveled, no more afternoon crashing for a nap. With lots of things to look forward to everyday, that's a blessing. Not that I still won't enjoy a nap now and then, but now I don't feel like I just can't make it through the day without a rest.

I feel lighter, in mood, in mind and thought, and hey! lighter in body - 5 pounds disappeared! Without even thinking about it. Eating in what is labeled "proper food combining" manner has definately had results.

At times I have felt - well, the only word I can think of is, euphoric. It seems like my whole body is telling me, YES, this is the way it's supposed to work! It's been surprising how quickly my physical system has responded, and how thoroughly I've made the mental shift of recognizing that the raw food is what I need to do. It sure didn't take long! I like this feeling!

So what's ahead? I have a fridge housing a rainbow of vegetables, sprouts growing rampant on the counter, luscious spreads and dressings and dips waiting to be loved...and a very very happy body.


Tuesday, August 11, 2009


When I began this jaunt into raw foods, it was all at once. However, I know there was some synchronicity involved. The garden is at peak production. The Farmer's Markets are bursting with color and flavor. A friend had to marry off a daughter and left me her garden to care for, for a couple of weeks. She has eggplant in her garden. I don't. But now I can indulge, anyway! So yes, the timing was good.

Timing in harvesting the garden is important, too - just try keeping up with the explosion of August vegetables! From one hour to the next, something is ready to eat - wonderful grazing!

I also think about the timing in my life journey. I have had several bouts of serious health issue the past two years. I also have limited means, for buying groceries and taking care of medical bills.

So taking care of myself by eating in a health-supporting manner is just part of provident living; saving money by avoiding health issues and subsequent expense, and making the most of the resouces I have at hand - a huge garden being the prime example. Not to mention the wildcrafting which is abundant here on the acreage. Food under foot, wherever I go!

As I have spent time this week delving into the raw foods, both theory, research, and recipes, I'm impressed by the awesome health benefits. This was definately the right thing to do for myself, and the right time.

I'm so grateful for those who have walked this path for the past 20 or more years, and for the newer, ambitious and savvy folk, who are generous with their knowledge and enthusiasm. They make these first baby steps so much easier. I like to step out in knowledge, and thanks to all of them I am comfortably ambling along.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Hot day = cold soup

Big thunder storm last night. Several downpours throughout the evening and night. Soaked ground. Overcast. Hot. Adds up to HUMIDITY. Wisconsin "stupidity", as my son-in-law calls it. Sheesh. It is 90 some degrees and about 99 percent humidity.

Ice cold watermelon, blueberries, a couple of strawberries, some almond milk. Whizzed in the Vita. Perfect breakfast.

It's so uncomfortably warm and sticky, that the thought of food, even vegetables and fruit, is just not appealing. Enter the COLD SOUP.

A scan of the fridge revealed all the makings. Just needed a quick trip to the garden for some dill. Caught some young zuchinni on the way back, before they grew into teenage zuchinni (I like them at toddler stage). Into the Vita-mix went: about 2 cups of baby spinach, a tender young zuchinni cut in chunks, a couple cloves of garlic, a dollop of tahini, a glug of Bragg's Liquid Aminos, a handful of dill, the last tablespoon of sunflower seeds, about 1/2 cup of water. It took a couple stops to push everything down to where the action was, but in about 90 seconds I had this velvety, soothingly green soup. A quick chill in the freezer, then into a bowl.
The garnish is a sprig of right-out-of-the-garden dill, AND some crumbles of my freshly made goat chevre with chives and dill.

NOTE: this chevre is made with only an initial warming of the milk to 86 degrees. The culture does the rest. I call that raw.

A cold soup on a hot day is a lifesaver.

I'm loving this raw stuff!!

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Learning curve...

As with most endeavors, one should become educated about what you are doing. Especially when it comes to your health and well-being. For the past few days, I've been traveling high-speed roads over the internet, visiting around in the raw world. Fun, informative, time-consuming...some good sites, some not-so-good.

My basic premise in life is, KEEP IT SIMPLE. Approaching raw eating with this in mind, I have criteria for what I ingest both mentally and physically.

One thing I've learned in the past 24 hours, is that I will probably be considered a "high raw" eater - if one must really have a label. In other words, I will eat mostly raw, most of the time. I love lightly steamed veggies like broc and cauliflower, and as long as I don't boil the good stuff out of a veg I see no reason to agonize over "giving up" foods that have proven good for me in the past. I listen to my body a lot. It knows.

That all being said, I have to recommend a site that I think has done an exemplary job of keeping it simple, educational and encouraging. The author, Gena, seems warm and approachable and has COMMON SENSE! How refreshing! I often maintain it has left the planet...

Anyway, here's a link to Gena and her awesome explanations and recipes. Be sure to explore the tabs at the top, and have an open mind as you read. You will be refreshed and maybe even inspired. I certainly am.

Gena has done the footwork, and I never have believed in reinventing the wheel...

Thursday, August 6, 2009


Besides just having fun indulging in one of my favorite hobbies - reading cookbooks and recipes and learning more about foods - I have noticed something that is a bit unusual in my many years of all sorts of "diet" experiences: I'm not thinking about how the food I'm eating is affecting me. Is it too high in fat, carbs, etc, or no sugar or trans fats, and so on. Because as long as it is RAW, or really close to it, there is no need to fuss over it. No counting calories, or amounts, or servings. What a concept.

I find that so refreshing and FREEING. It is an actual feeling of lightness - both of mind and of body. Hmmmm. I've been reading about how results of eating raw can be very quick - this is interesting. The more I learn, the more convinced I am that my angels led me to this.

Here's the fastest icecream recipe you'll ever make:
Put 3-4 frozen bananas, cut in chunks, into a blender or food processor. Process until smooth. The end.

Told ya so.

If the bananas were really ripe, you don't need any sort of sweetener for this. If I really wanted to gild the lily, I could drizzle it with honey or pure maple syrup. Might even add some flavors like maybe cocoa powder, or frozen berries. It's a whole new world out there in "raw-land"!

This was my treat last night, and there's still more in the freezer, in 1/2 cup containers.

Into the Vita-mix: 3 frozen bananas, about 1/2 c. frozen raspberries (fresh from the garden two hours previous - now THAT'S eating "zero miles!"), a dash of vanilla, about 1/3 cup finely chopped walnut/pecan mixture, 1 cup cold goatmilk. Whizzed into icey, creamy yumminess in about 30 seconds. Made 5 nice little cups of frozen treat.

If I had to choose again, I would make it with a nut or seed milk, rather than the dairy. The goatmilk is delicious but milk does cause me some problems, always has. One of the things I need to remove from my personal eating pattern is dairy. That means my lovely chevre will be a treat item, not an everyday snack. Dairy is in one of the circles, but really doesn't do well with fruits (this is a "food combining" principle). Which is why next time I will make my treat with almond milk.

Now that's something I have to wrap my mind around: food combining. I used to do the old popular concept of a certain amount of beans with a certain amount of appropriate grain or veg, etc. to make sure I was getting "adequate protein" (Adele Davis era - I know, that dates me). It was complicated and ultimately too much trouble.

Now, with the help of a simple four-circle graph (looks like Mickey Mouse - the ears, you know), it's very very EASY to figure out this concept of food combining. I'm not going to get too hung up on it at the moment, my aim for this week is just to start eating mostly raw (100% so far), and enjoy the journey.

But eventually, when I get out of kindergarten, I will graduate to the high school concept of food combining put forth by Traci Sellers in her "Traci's Transformational Health Principles", and meantime I can still enjoy "Traci's Transformational Kitchen Recipe Collection" which does it all FOR me!

A good place to explore:

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Day 1 - what's in the fridge?

To start the day, I cut up some watermelon and snacked on that as I puttered around getting my morning underway. Drank my usual glass of water and apple cider vinegar, and got the daily quart of nettle/dandelion/plaintain infusion going to drink throughout the day. Threw in some mullein at the last minute, that hadn't quite dried completely from the batch I took out of the dehydrators earlier this morning.

Again, it just felt like I was doing the "right thing", in pursuing this way of eating. It was what my body needed for now. For lunch, I chose one of several recipes I had tagged in Dining in the Raw, and after a quick jaunt through the garden I made Zuchinni Carrot soup. I'll be putting together some raspberry-banana frozen dessert after awhile, the berries and 'nanners are working on getting frozen so I can throw them in the Vita- mix.

Here's how the soup goes together: Blend 1/2 c. tahini (or in my case, lacking tahini at the moment, the last of my raw cashew butter), a cup of water, some Bragg's Liquid Aminos, some garlic and green onion. Grate a medium zuchinni, a carrot, add half to the blender. Blend smooth. Pour into a bowl, stir in the rest of the grated veggies, some chopped cilantro, sliced green onion, and more Bragg's to taste. After a taste test, I also stirred in 1/2 tsp. lemon juice. Chill, letting flavors blend.

This chilled soup is creamy but textured, fresh and crunchy and filling. I really enjoyed it, and will put it on my "make again" list.

Dinner. Hmmmm. Dinner. Well, I have some couscous in the pantry, and a ton more veggies waiting in the wings. We'll see what they decide to waltz across the stage.

Well, now! They didn't do too bad for a bunch of amateurs! They chose to present Garam Coucous.

Here we have couscous (bring water to boil, stir in couscous 1/1 ratio, take off heat, lid, and let set 5 minutes - wahlah!) in the pot, with some garam masala spice stirred in (one of my FAV spice blends); diced red pepper, grated carrot, sliced scallions, chopped cilantro, a couple of olives (escaped from their can), toasted ground cumin seed, with some Bragg's Liquid Aminos and Udo's Oil Blend to provide flavor, nutrition and moisture to marry the cast as a harmonious and delicious family.

Plated, it looks like they made a successful production! I could eat that. And with the spoon of veggie raita left from our Indian feast the other evening, it was perfect! The flavors are multi-layered, the textures varied for interest, and the warm couscous had a perfect counterpoint in the cold raita (cucs, onion, tomato, plain yogurt, ground toasted cumin seed).
There was plenty of coucous and veggies left to combine with the Bragg's and Udo oil and more ground cumin seed, for a lunch bowl I can look forward to tomorrow.

There's still dessert to come. The frozen banana-raspberry-goat milk icecream is divided into 1/2 cup dessert cups, safely stashed in the freezer for those moments of bliss we all need in our food.

My tummy is happy. My heart is happy. I would call this a good start.

In the beginning, there was a garden...

This is my journal of diving into raw food for awhile. I'm purposely not putting time lines or guidelines or anything else on myself as I approach this way of eating. I've been interested in it for a long time, even have a "cookbook" on the shelf that's been browsed through but the pages have yet to be dripped or dropped on during a experimental foray.

Until this morning.

The herb harvesting and intense wildcrafting I've been doing seem to have influenced something deep inside. Yesterday, it smacked me between the eyes (where supposedly the brain resides) and said, "Yo, it's TIME to clean up your act!"

The other thing that happened, was a few days ago I came across a blogsite that really resonated with me, from a gal who eats 75% raw, has goats, makes soap and cheese, has a garden, and horses, and chickens, and homeschools her boys, can see how I got hooked in. Also, she is in central Washington, so I felt very at home with her comments about her area.

I can't really describe the euphoria that struck as I said to myself, "Self, we are going to do this, it's the right thing to do, and we're doing it NOW!" I felt light, and free, and very very happy. It's a high that I recognized, as being true to ME, true to my soul and where I am in my life journey.

I know that at my age, critical digestive enzyme activity is greatly dimished. Raw foods, and very lightly cooked foods, can help that deficiency. With my wake-up call of colon cancer, I need to be more aware of eating in an intelligent, not sensory, manner. Not that this way of eating will be a hardship, I've done too much vegetarian eating in the past to fall into the "bland, blah" trap.

This will be a journey into some familar and also new realms of food. It will be exciting, challenging, and vastly satisfying. Body and soul.


Here I go again, with sincere desire to be healthier, to discard some pounds along with some bad habits and cravings, to eat closer to zero miles (everything produced at home as much as possible - thank you, garden!), and live more lightly on the land.

I've found a website that is comfortable to start with ( ), I have my "Dining in the Raw" cookbook (very nice, too), and some blogs to browse from like-minded souls.

I have a good food processor, a Vita-mix blender that is capable of mixing everything from soup to concrete, some premium Henckel knives and my trusty cutting boards.

AND, I have a producing garden that is begging to be ingested!

We're ready to rock 'n roll!