"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

Friday, October 7, 2011

Supreme a Grapefruit!

Once I saw how easy it was to supreme a grapefruit, I've never looked back! It works on oranges of all types, lemons and limes, too! A really useful kitchen skill, minimum work, easy technique. Here is how it goes...

Using a SHARP knife, cut both ends off the grapefruit, make sure to get to the "meat". Then holding it sort of on edge, start at the top and cut down around to the bottom. This takes a tiny bit of practice, but isn't difficult.
Continue on around...

...until you have a nekkid grapefruit! If there is still the white rind left on in a few places, it's ok but you can go back and slice that off. Sharp knives are a MUST in the kitchen!!

Pro chefs then slice each segment out, and it's not hard - just loses some of the nice juice. So I separate each segment one at a time, and peel the membrane off - it is pretty easy.

Takes a little longer to peel the membrane than to slice, but the end result is the same...a lovely sparkling bowl of delicious refreshing grapefruit!

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Protein Boost

Greens have a surprising amount of available protein - in the form of amino acids, which are protein building blocks. There are times when I want a protein boost and turn to a quality supplement, such as hemp. Sometimes I just use hemp seeds, sprinkled on soup or salads. Since I have a green smoothie daily, hemp powder is usually my go-to for that extra protein.

I really like Manitoba Harvest hemp powders. The processing is done without heat, preserving all the nutrients of powerhouse hemp. Texture is a tiny bit grainy but not really noticable in amidst the greens and fruits.

I order the hemp seeds and powder directly from the source in Canada, although I have found a few "local" (over 50 miles away) healthfood stores or herb stores that do carry Manitoba Harvest products. The small shipping cost more than offsets the price of gas, which is another reason to mail-order!

Explore several types of hemp products (seeds, oil, powders) at They have really good sales and promotions from time to time. A quality company, great service!

Monday, August 1, 2011

Green Cleaning - with a hint of Yellow

"Green" is all the rage now. Building green, driving green, etc.

I like to EAT green! I use a lot of fresh lemon juice, so there are those nice yellow rinds left over. One can eat only so much grated lemon zest.

Here's the perfect "GREEN" solution: clean the garbage disposal using the lemon rinds!
I cut up the rinds into 1-2" pieces, keep them in a little bowl on the sink. A couple times a day, several go down "George the Gobbler" to keep his gullet clean and smelling like - well, lemons!

Cleaning Green was never so easy. Or so Yellow.

Friday, July 29, 2011

Bless my Bones!

"Becoming Raw" is a wonderful reference book, a text for learning a lot of raw details about nutrition and food facts. The info is scientifically based, with references, footnotes, the whole shebang. A lot of reading and pondering, but well worth the time.

The handful of recipes are balanced, tasty, practical. It's an education just reading the menus and recipes!

Here's one of my latest forays into summery salads using greens fresh (ultimate gourmet!) from our garden:

The recipe is titled: Build-Your-Bones Salad . (I modified the assembly.)

Toss in large bowl: 2-3 c. EACH thinly sliced kale and/or collard greens, chopped napa cabbage, chopped broccoli florets, thinly sliced red cabbage

Put greens mix into one of those green veggie keeper bags to store in frig.

When ready to have a yummy lunch or dinner, put torn romaine into your salad bowl, add big handfuls of the crucifer mix. Top with chopped red peppers, and optionally, some chopped peeled cucumber and tomato. This makes huge salads, filling and oh-so-lovely and nutritious!

By keeping the crucifers and romaine separate, the base mix will last longer, and the lettuce won't get ugly! This makes a pile of greens, you can eat out of the bag all week - a blessing for those who are working and come home famished!

I chose, from the 8 dressing recipes, Liquid Gold dressing.

Blend well: 1/2 c. EACH flaxseed (or hempseed oil), fresh lemon juice, water; 1/3 c. nutritional yeast flakes; 1/4 c. tamari; 1-2 T gound flaxseed; 2 tsp. Dijon mustard; 4 tsp. maple syrup or other sweetener; 1 tsp. cumin.

Store in glass jar in frig for up to 2 weeks.

I also sprinkled on a couple tablespoons of Nama Shoyu Crunchies:

Soak 4-6 hours 2 c. sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds or almonds, or a MIX of them. (NOTE: you don't HAVE to soak them, just improves amino acid balance and gives lovely texture.

Drain well. Put in bowl, sprinkle with 1 T. nama shoyu or tamari, stir to mix well. Spread evenly on mesh sheets on dehydrator trays. Dehydrate at 105 degrees for about 12 hours, or until crisp. Stored airtight in frig or freezer, they'll keep for about 6 months.

Although why anyone would let 2 little cups of these yummies hang around that long is a mystery to me...

Friday, July 15, 2011

Minty Good Morning!

Not the best photo, but I was in a hurry. In fact I started drinking my greenie before I remembered I wanted to take a snap of it...

I really like this one, have it often right now, because the mint is rampant in the herb pots and borders.

In the VitaMix: 1 banana (frozen or not), 1 c. fresh pineapple (frozen or not), about 2 c. spinach, and the star of the show: 2-4 nice mint leaves depending on your minty taste buds. Blitz smooth, and ENJOY!

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Mango Banana Tango

If you've any passion at all for a ripe MANGO, this is one to try. And so simple.

You don't even need an ice cream maker.

Pop 4 ripe (that means FRECKLED SKIN, folks, no greenies here) bananas into the freezer. I usually peel and cut them up first. Some folks freeze with skin on. Run them under some water to defrost the skin, they peel fairly easily then.

Likewise, with a couple of ripe mangos - peeled and cut into chunks, and into the freezer. You want about 2 cups of mango. Or fetch some from the frozen food department at your market.

Question of the day: how can you tell if a mango is ripe? IT WEEPS for you! Truly. Look at the stem end. If you don't see some shiny sticky nectar marks around the stem, sometimes even running down the side, it ain't ripe!

ANYWAY. Back to ice cream. Oh yes, we're making ice cream.

When the fruit is frozen, put it all in your food processor with the S-blade. Blitz until it turns into a frozen ice cream confection. You may have to push it down a few times.

Purty stuff, eh? I borrowed the photos, not to mention the recipe, from one of my fav blogs, .

Those are marigold petals. Yep, you can eat marigolds. Some are tastier than others. Or just use them for garnish to prettify a dish. Won't poison you, and sooo easy!

OK. Thhhhhats all, folks. Go forth and gather you some RIPE bananas and mangos.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Sweetie Balls

Sometimes the tastebuds just want a good hit of SWEET! These yummy little balls are not only raw, made with nuts and dried fruits, they rank about a 12 on the 10 scale of satisfying that clamoring tastebud. Easy to make, the ingredients are all things that reside in my raw pantry.

In a food processor, pulverize:

1/2 c. organic raisins

3/4 c. walnuts

1/2 c. dried pitted dates (Medjool are perfect for this recipe)

1/2 c. dried apricots, unsulphered (OR, use dried FIGS - my preference!)

2 T. fresh squeezed orange juice

zest from one orange (microplane is the tool to reach for...)

Process a few minutes,until the mixture clumps together. If your fruits are especially dry, you may start the processing, let it set for 30 minutes to soak, then continue to process until it gobs up.

Place about 2/3 c. dry unsweetened shredded coconut on a saucer. Roll the fruit/nut mixure into small balls (about a tsp.), roll in the coconut,

Store the balls in one layer in a sealable container.

Just one of these little sweeties is so very satisfying. Chewy, lovely flavor with a zing from the orange zest.

It's not hard to pass up the chocolate bars with this in hand...honest!

Friday, April 15, 2011

Egg-zactly what a cracker needs!

Dear rawbie buddy Lily Hoodock taught an awesome "Raw 101" class in Hebo this week! I was so inspired by her wonderful recipes, demos and passion for eating healthy and raw. Thank you Lily for your sweet spirit and big heart! One of the recipes, which I shamelessly "pigged out" on, was an Eggless Egg salad that was first introduced to our group at a Raw-some Potluck last year. So from Lily and Karen, here's a WONDERFUL cracker spread! (or veg dip, or wrap filling, or just do what I do - eat it with a spoon!!)


In blender:

1/4-1/2 c. water as needed

2 cloves garlic

scant 1 1/2 tsp. sea salt

1 1/2 c. raw cashews

1 tsp. dry mustard powder (or more, to taste)

1 tsp. turmeric powder

Blend, adjust seasonings as desired. In a bowl, put:

4 lime-sized buds of cauliflower which has been pulsed in food processor until rice sized

2 sticks celery, chopped fine

2 green onions, chopped fine

Mix with sauce. Refrigerate.

I had some fresh Sesame Flax crackers just begging for some schmear - and some tangy crunchy clover sprouts hanging out waiting for inspiration. Wah-lah! Lunch! WARNING: this stuff is addictive...

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Baby Nettles

Only one thing gets me more excited about spring than seed catalogs - NETTLES!!

Once the nettles start showing their rambunctious green shoots, I know it is truly spring. Early spring - but spring nevertheless.

The first harvest, Saturday morning, was celebrated in a cow pasture - well fertilized, unsprayed, and most importantly - uninhabited by cows. I brought home a 5 gallon bucket of three to five inch long baby nettles, and started some nettle tea brewing almost before taking off my boots! You'll be hearing a LOT more about nettles over the next few weeks, so let's just cut to the good stuff. EATING them!

While a load of leaves were drying in the dehydrator, I made a Wild Green Smoothie for lunch, with a side of nettle tea.

Into the VitaMix: a nicely spotted ripe banana, a peeled and quartered sweet juicy orange, about 1" of peeled and minced fresh ginger, 1 1/2 c. water, a big handful of baby spinach - and about a cup of nettle leaves. Whiz. Drink with abandon!

The last of the Saturday harvest is now brewing in a quart jar, which will sit overnight. In the morning, I'll strain out the nettles, and enjoy sipping the deep green infusion all day long.

Nettle are the supreme spring tonic. So full of minerals, vitamins and protein, it's no wonder they protect themselves with little stabbing stinging hairs! In tea, or raw in salad (yes, you can!) and smoothies, nettles pack a nutritional whollop that would be sinful to ignore.

Especially since they grow abundantly, are free, and farmers love to have you come pick them out of their fields!

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Caesar never had it so good...

Have you ever noticed, most often the simplest is the best?

This salad is the perfect example.

Tear up a head of fresh, crispy, juicy organic romaine. Put in a largish bowl. You'll be tossing it, soon.

In a food processor or blender, whiz:
2-5 fat cloves of garlic (if you really like garlic, go for the gusto!)
about 1/4 c. best quality olive oil
pinch sea salt, grind of pepper

Pour this deliciousness over the romaine, toss gently to cover the leaves.

Pig out! This stuff is irresistable!!

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Raw-Some Potluck!

Our first raw food potluck of 2011!

Hosted at ArtSpace Cafe in Bay City, as usual. Thanks, Craig and Trish, for your generous use of the beautiful old site with the incredible bay view - and for the sunset you always order up!

Clockwise from 12 o'clock: Caesar Salad - crispy juicy organic romaine with a killer garlic dressing; neon-bright raw red cabbage Kraut Nouvelle; Pad Thai with a lime wedge; fig bars (scrumptious!); zuchinni rounds with nut cheese appetizers; sweet potato hummus and veggies; Quinoa Tabouli.

This was a PERFECT dinner menu - light, fresh, healthy, inspirational. Mix with great company and good conversation - we almost stayed all night! The sort of evening that makes treasured memories. Thanks, rawbies!

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Kale massage therapist

As a massage therapist, I had clients ranging from horses and dogs to babies and elders. I had to pass some detailed tests, to procure a license. I had to buy some specialized equipment, like my massage table.

I never ever thought I'd be massaging vegetables. For a different table.

Today, it was Kale. Kissed by winter frosts, it is sweet and tender all by itself. I munched enough for a lunch while picking through several varieties in the nearby community garden. Not that I don't have several varieties in my own garden. It's just fun to graze a different garden now and then.

What I brought home turned into a lovely bowl of ....


Wash and chop several generous handfuls of Kale.

Pour about 2 T. of olive oil over the kale, sprinkle with a bit of sea salt, and start massaging (did you wash your hands first?). As you work with the kale, think green, loving thoughts. Make sure all the kale bits are well coated with the oil, and it is "wilted".

Now, throw in about 1/2 of an avocado. Continue to smush and massage, working the avo thoroughly into the kale. This is also known as Kale-Avocado therapy, very specialized.

Sprinkle on fresh lemon juice. The amount is up to you. I like a lot.

Throw in any veggies that hold up their hand (frond?). Grated carrots and chopped tomatoes volunteered for duty.

Do a taste test. It's perfectly lovely at this point, ready to grace your table.

But I decided to gild the lily, as I am wont to do from time to time. A quick search in the cupboard - aha! A sprinkle of kelp, a pinch of dulse, and a healthy dash of Braggs. Hmmm.

Ok, some nutritional yeast. Sorta cheesey.

Now THAT'S a KALE SALAD! Slice the rest of the avocado, and top the salad. Just because you can.

Having just taught two raw food classes titled "Health Guardians: Winter Veggies", I am totally tuned into Kale right now. I am thrilled to have such grand plants in my garden all winter. As spring approaches, the tender new leaves are going to be tasty additions to many meals.

If you haven't grown kale - this is your year to get in touch with your inner green-ness, and make room for some kale in your garden or flower beds. Delicious and nutritious!

Tuesday, January 25, 2011


A delightful recipe from "Raw on less than $10 a Day". A super raw site ( ) , with a weekly menu and wonderful recipes to play with - try it, you'll like it!

If you don't have a spiralizer, just slice very thinly, or use peeler to make thin strips.

In wide shallow bowl, combine:
2 med. zuchinni, spiralized
1 carrot, long thin slices with peeler
1 bunch green onions, sliced
1/2 red bell pepper, long thin slices
large handful fresh raw mung bean sprouts

Mix in small bowl:
1/4 c. raw almond butter
1/2 inch fresh ginger, minced
1 T. Braggs, or soy sauce of choice
1 clove garlic, minced
1 T. agave
1/4 - 1/2 tsp. cayenne (or to your personal heat index!)
dash sea salt, to your taste

Mix sauce and veggies lightly.
To serve, top with a bit of cilantro, and 2 T. coarse chopped raw cashews

The sauce is sweetly heated, nutty, delicious!

This makes a gi-normous serving for a really hungry guy, or several smaller servings for us daintier eaters. Whatever size your serving, you'll be back for seconds!
I would highly recommend this one as a dinner offering to non-rawbies, a tasty introduction to the delights of fresh raw eating - especially if they already enjoy Thai flavors!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

30 DAYS RAW: Roquette Soup

If you happen to be a gardener, you probably know that "Roquette" (pronounced "rocket"!) is another label for Arugula. A somewhat spicy, warm-flavored green, that gets hotter as it matures. The baby leaves are a delight in salad or soup.


1 c. water

2 c. arugula (roquette)

2/3 to 1 c. fresh basil

1 avocado

3 med. or large tomatoes, orange or yellow (less acidic)

Blend all ingredients except for tomatoes. Add the tomatoes last and blend just enough to leave tomato chunks.

Taste for flavor, add pinch of sea salt if needed, or blend in 2-3 stalks celery before tomatoes.

A velvety texture, warm flavor, filling and most of all, TASTY!

I'm so glad I plunked a basil plant into a pot and brought it indoors about 2 days before our first frost. It looks a little leggy, but it gets trimmed up regularly for recipes. Wonderful to have it FRESH as the rain and hail pelts down outside the dining room window!

Even the flowers get used, as garnish or in blended soups and smoothies. Magic herb: Basil!

Friday, January 7, 2011

30 Days Raw: Unlikely Pals

OK, the apple and orange. Check. The ginger. Check. Carrot...well, OK. Beet? Hmmmmm. GARLIC??!! WHAAA....?

Come, my little chickadees, let me lead you to paradise. When you cast this lot into the magic of the VITAMIX, you have....

1 orange, peeled, cut into chunks
1 apple, quartered
1 medium carrot
1 medium beet, unpeeled, trim off root and top (about 2 - 3", use the greens too, if you want - I did)
1-2" fresh ginger, peeled (more if you LOVE ginger like I do!)
1 clove medium to large clove garlic (if you love garlic, go for it!)
1 heaping tablespoon fresh ground flax seed
1 cup ice, or more as needed
Using the plunger to press the goodies into the blades, blend smooth. Add some agave if you really feel the need, but I found the concoction to be delightful as is.

Icey, spicy!

Food of the gods, folks, food of the gods. The garlic is an unexpected flavor note, but boy does it WORK!

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

30 DAYS RAW: Rocky Road Ice Cream

A bit of sweet treat goes a long way with a raw lifestyle. This super easy recipe is courtesy of "Rapid Raw", my little go-to recipe book when I need something FAST and EASY!

In VITAMIX blender:
2 frozen bananas, cut in pieces
1 tsp. raw cacao
1 tsp. raw carob
24 raw almonds
2-3 T. water
The water helps things get going. The VITAMIX plunger is necessary to push the mixture around until it starts to blend. Blend as smooth or chunky as you like.
Serve in a fun dessert glass. Presentation is part of the eating experience - make it special and enjoy every spoonful, S - L - O - W - L - Y.
Treating yourself well is soooo important. Remember, "important" begins with "I"!! I AM WORTH TAKING CARE OF MY HEALTH!

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

30 Days Raw: Creamy Cauliflower Soup

Tweaking recipes to fit what you have on hand is an art. Something to practice regularly!
A dental excursion this morning called for liquidy fare today. I had to forego my beloved chewy midday salad, and improvised this soup from a Rapid Raw recipe (I do so love that little book!)


Having a variety of veggies and seasonings on hand is crucial to a successful 30 days.

Ingredients for the soup:

2 c. cauliflower

2-3 celery stalks

1/3 c. raw macadamia nuts

3 T. olive oil

2 garlic cloves

2 T. tamari

2 T. fresh lemon juice

1 tsp. curry powder

1 c. hot water

Blitz smooth in the VITAMIX, running long enough to warm thoroughly. Add more water for thinner soup. Adjust seasonings to taste.

A note on celery: it is one of the most heavily chemicalized veggies - ALWAYS GET ORGANICALLY GROWN CELERY.

Sunday, January 2, 2011

30 Days Raw: Day 2 and the Kitchen Sink Salad

This salad is soooo satisfying! I'm loving it for my midday meal!

I think I'm going to call it the KITCHEN SINK SALAD.

First I tear up about half a bowl of baby arugula. Then I chop up 4-5 leaves of kale into about 1/2 " pieces, and add to the bowl. A quick check in the frigerator - out comes chopped red and yellow sweet peppers, scallions, parsley, sesame seeds, soaked sunflower seeds, some diced cucumber, a bit of tomato. Into the bowl they go.

Here's the magic that pulls it all together: Mellow Miso Dressing.

1/2 c. olive oil
1/2 lemon, juiced
1 tsp. apple cider vinegar
2 T. mellow white miso
1 T. grated fresh ginger
1 T. turmeric grated or 1/2 tsp. powder
2 cloves garlic, crushed
sea salt to taste
Smash and whisk together with a fork.

OK, here's my version: peel and chop the ginger and garlic. Use whatever miso you have on hand (I had Shiro - light, but not white). Throw all ingredients in the VITAMIX and blitz smooth.
You may have noticed, I'm all for simplicity and fast results ;-)

Anyway, it's a scrumptious dressing for anything with kale. The oil helps "wilt" the kale making it easier to chew.

Turmeric is a spice we need to find more ways to include in our diet. It's anti-inflammatory properties alone would be good reason. But here's a link to more info on turmeric, worth a browse:

(Copy and paste the link into your address bar if it doesn't work from this site)

Saturday, January 1, 2011


What better way to start off a brand new year than to challenge yourself to 30 Days Raw?!

One of my rawbie buddies and I have dedicated this sparkling fresh month to really tuning in and tuning up our raw foods lifestyle. New recipes, old favs, local foods (doesn't get much more local than my veggie garden!), sharing our passion for healthiest eating and nourishing the spirit as well as the body.

Day one:
Breakfast is easy - green smoothie, of course (banana, apple, spinach, kale, parsley, celery).
Midday - a big 'ol mixed green salad (arugula, kale, sweet red/yellow bell peppers, scallions, tomatoes, sunflower and sesame seeds, with a tangy dressing of EVOO, lemon juice, miso, fresh ginger, garlic and turmeric - super!
Dinner - a new soup recipe - Borscht. I adapted this from "Dining in the Raw", one of my well-used volumes.

Get ready for a real dazzler - nothing like beets to put some bright pink in your bowl!


This is the original recipe - I'll note what I changed.

1 lb. beets, peeled and chopped (I used 2 med. beets fresh from the garden)

1 c. fresh carrot juice (I didn't want to get the juicer out, so I just used two fresh carrots, about 5" long)

1 c. almonds (since I was cutting down the recipe, I used about 2/3 c.)

4 scallions, minced (I used 2, coarsely whacked)

1/4 c. fresh dill (no dill in the garden - I used 1 tsp. dried dill weed)

1 cucumber, peeled and diced (I used about a half)

dash cayenne

Braggs to taste

The original recipe said to make almond nut milk and strain it. I just dumped the almonds and all the rest (except cucs) in the VitaMix along with about 1 1/2 c. very warm water, and blended it all up smooth. It tasted grand!

I poured half of the batch of soup into my bowl, stirred in most of the diced cucumber, used a spoonful to garnish, along with a sprig of parsley just for fun.

This was a thicker soup than the original recipe - I do like thick soups in the winter, just seems more satisfying. I also liked it warmish, rather than the traditional chilled Borscht. I'll use the original version for a summer soup!

What a blessing, to trundle out to the back yard raised bed garden and pull some beets and carrots, nip some verdant crisp kale leaves and fluffy parsley. I'm so fortunate to live in a climate where winter veggies can hold in the ground for several months, even through frost and freezes. On the coast, we usually don't have very long bouts of freezing temps in the winter.

Kale loves it here! I grew three kinds this year. The big leaf with pinkish-purple vein/stem is called Peacock. The darker longish leaves are Lancinato (sometimes called dinosaur kale), a sweet variety that has been my fav for years. The curly-edged leaves are Winterbor, a sturdy plant that will hold up for several years. There are 4-year old plants at Don's Waterfall Nursery, still going strong in the organic beds tended by Don and Janet - good folks to know!

The kale starred in the lunch salad, well-chopped to make chewing and digestion easier. Saved a few leaves for tomorrow's green smoothie. I feel rich!
My tummy is happy, my body feels light, we're off to a tasty beginning of 30 DAYS RAW!