Friday, November 18, 2011

Can't Be Bothered to Cook Green Drink

Lately I have become quite lazy about cooking for myself, but always feel better when I eat my greens. It took awhile, but I have perfected the recipe for the best green drink around. It sounds way weird and most people turn up their noses when I tell them about it or they look at it, but upon tasting it, across the board people say, "Oh, that's not nearly as bad as I thought it would be." Then they take another sip and go further, "Well, that's not bad at all." With yet another drink, they admit, "You know I could get to like this!" and then they empty their glass (which had 'just a taste' to begin with) and often want more. The body knows what's good for it!

I recently started adding avacado SEED to it. Whaaaaaat? A dear friend of mine who is a naturopath introduced me to this. The reason you put the seed in your guacamole so it won't turn brown is that it is a super strong anti-oxidant - anti-oxidants are what all the anti-aging hype suggests we ingest to keep our bodies eternally young! Isn't that brilliant? It's a bitter to chew, but just cut off a piece and throw it in.
Now I never measure anything, so I'll try to come close, but try various amounts until you find what is most delicious to you! I am BIG fan of ginger, so I use more than what most people would like.

Put the following organic ingredients in a blender and whiz the devil out of it.

2 cups fresh spinach - loosly packed
1 stalk celery
1/2 c parsley
1/3 cucumber (I like the Persian or hot house kind)
1/2 inch ginger (peeling not necessary)
1 whole lemon (cut the yellow skin off and leave the rest)
little chunk of avocado seed 
1/2 cup frozen pineapple
1/2 cup pineapple juice
2/3 C water
stevia (NuNaturals) to taste
1TBS Flax seed oil

dash trace minerals
magnesium oxide (keeps everything moving!)

Esay Peasy Sunflower Hummus Sandwich

Hummus - large container or homemade (16oz)
1/2 C Toasted sunflower seeds
1lb spinach
1.5 Tbs Olive or coconut oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tsp rice or balsamic vinegar (or to taste)
salt & pepper
fresh tomatoes (home grown are best), sliced
4 slices of your favorite hearty bread
flax or good olive oil
avocado (optional)
fresh basil (optional)

Mix sunflower seeds into hummus
Sautee garlic in oil, add spinach and sautee until bright green and limp.  salt & pepper to taste
Toast bread and drizzle with flax or olive oil
spread hummus on toast,
top with drained spinach
add sliced tomatoes, avocado & fresh basil
sprinkle sea salt and coarse pepper on top and serve

Delicious Designer Drinking Water

I get really bored drinking as much water as all the books tell me is good for me, so I decided to play around with it and make a myriad of fruit waters. People that come to my house for dinner always look forward to what kind of crazy and beautiful concoction they'll be drinking. 

My rabbi/natureopath/amazing artist/musician friend, Natan Segal  recently introduced me to adding spices and a whole new world has opened up! I went to his house and there were all these pretty jars filled with spiced water. He told me what each were and I took that ball and ran with it. Now I am hooked and my counter tops are full of pretty jars with tasty things.

Mix n Match any of the following... just have fun. The fresh things like ginger and mint can be used 3-4 times before losing their taste all together, but the dried spices are gifts that keep on giving. If the first batch of the dried spices is bitter, that is normal. Just throw that batch away and add new water and it should be fine.

Vanilla bean (or extract added to any is good)
Cardamon seeds (when the husks soften, just squeeze them to release the seeds for stronger flavors)
Cinnamon Stick
Star Anise
Fresh Nutmeg
Fresh ginger sliced thinly
Kaffir Lime Leaves
any fresh herb (rosemary, lavender, mint, parsley etc... very good when mixed in small portions with other flavors)

You just keep pouring boiling water over the top and let it sit until the desired strength is reached for as long as the flavor lasts. (May need to sit longer as spices lose their potency)

Now the fun part - to add diversity, use any of these as a base and add fruits or juice and a little sweetener. (I use stevia so as not to raise my glycemic index and not put anything sugary in my body. For those of you who don't care about that, use any sweetener you like. Just bear in mind it won't be processed as water in your body anymore; it becomes more like juice or any sweetened beverage.)

I LOVE grapefruit, kaffir lime, vanilla
pineapple (I use frozen tid bits and leave overnight) lime mint
anise/ginger lime or lemon
rosemary/ginger lemon
mixed spice

just be creative...  any fruit you use will color the water... just make sure you let fruit waters sit over night to let the flavors meld

if the fresh herbs turn brown, just remove and add fresh ones before serving

Love, Love, Love

Kitchen Sink Smokey Carrot Soup

I wanted to make dinner for my housemate who had just returned from a week long trip and I didn't feel like going to the grocery store. I managed to rummage up enough for a yummy little salad and made up this soup which turned out to be incredibly yummy!

Saute 4 pieces of bacon, cut up in small pieces
when the bacon is almost cooked through, slice and saute until soft 1 lg onion
caramelize with 2 TBS sherry
3 cloves garlic crushed
2 small stalks celery, sliced
1/4 tsp ea oregano, thyme, basil, savory,
1 TBS smoked paprika
chili to taste
5 carrots thinly sliced
1 lrg sweet potato, cubed
a red or yellow, grilled skinned pepper (I used the smoked bottled kind from TJ's)
water or broth to cover veggies

cook until soft...

cool some (hint: your blender might explode if it's too hot and you'll have a huge orange mess on your hands - and only fill it up about 3/4 full at one time)

puree all with a few artichoke hearts until smooth and creamy

smoked salt and cracked pepper to taste

top with goat cheese sprinkles and garnish w fresh parsley

Totally Gingery Pear/Apple Crisp

I had some pears that were getting a little questionable and some green apples lying around so I decided to make a crisp. I usually use oatmeal or some kind of yummy granola, but upon searching through my cabinets, I had neither. I did however find some ginger snaps and thought, "Wow! Now that would be yummy!" Indeed, the end result is amazing. Perfect for ginger lovers. Enjoy!

4 granny smith apples, peeled, cored and sliced
3 large pears, peeled, cored and sliced
1/2" peeled ginger in the thinnest slivers you can cut
toss with:
juice of a lemon
1 tsp vanilla
good dash of cinnamon
1/4 tsp full strength stevia w/ 1/3 c agave (real maple syrup will do too) or 1/2 c. sugar
little flour (2 tsp)

pile and press into square baking dish, dot with butter

10-12 ginger snaps (I used the kind from Trader Joes), crushed
1/2 flour
2/3 c. nuts (I like pecans but any will do) finely chopped
1/3 dark brown sugar or other sweetener
4 TBS butter chopped in little cubes

work topping with fingers until crumbly and butter is evenly dispersed

Cook at 375 until top is golden brown 30-40 minutes
I served mine with thick greek yogurt drizzled with agave