Vegan Caesar Salad with Sourdough Croutons

April 29th, 2015

Dairy, egg, and anchovy free, this salad still packs all the flavor of a conventional Caesar Salad.

 

Dressing

1/3 cup slivered almonds
1 large clove garlic
¼ cup lemon juice
¼ cup olive oil
1 tsp. Dijon
½ tsp. salt
1 tsp. apple cider vinegar
1 tablespoon nutritional yeast
2 teaspoons capers

Soak the almonds in ½ cup water for 15 to 20 minutes. Put nuts and soaking water in a blender with garlic, oil, juice, Dijon, salt, vinegar and yeast. Blend until smooth. Transfer to a bowl and stir in capers. Toss with chopped romaine lettuce. Top with a few twists of fresh black pepper and croutons.

Sourdough Croutons

5 slices day-old sourdough bread
4 tablespoons grapeseed oil
2 tablespoons lemon juice
½ tsp. salt
½ tsp. paprika
2 tsp. garlic powder

Cut the bread into cubes. Whisk together oil, juice, and spices. Add bread and toss to coat. Place on a baking sheet in a single layer, and bake at 375 for 5 minutes. Stir, and bake an additional 5 to 10 minutes until brown and crisp.


Using your oven to Dehydrate

April 17th, 2015

Want to try out some recipes but don’t have a dehydrator? You can dehydrate in your oven if you have a temperature setting of 200 degrees or less. The food won’t technically be “raw” but it will still be healthy and delicious!

1. Set your oven on the lowest possible setting.

2. Use a non stick pan or line your pan with parchment paper.

3. Prop open the oven door.

4. Keep a close eye on your food. Cooking time will be much less, maybe as little as half the dehydrating time.

Chips, crackers, bars, and breads are excellent things to try dehydrating in your oven. Ready for a dehydrator? I love my 9 tray Excalibur. I can dehydrate a week’s worth of food while I sleep!

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Super Crunchy Superfood Breakfast Toast

April 17th, 2015

Delicious and filling, this crunchy and fruity bread pairs well with nut butters and jam, a smear of coconut butter, or even goat cheese!

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2 cups buckwheat groats
¼ cup chia seeds
¼ cup white quinoa
½ cup ground flax seed
½ cup dried currants
½ cup dried cranberries
¼ cup golden raisins
3 cups water
½ tsp sea salt

Combine all ingredients in a large bowl. Let sit for 1 hour until the mixture is thick and “gloopy.” Divide evenly onto two Teflex covered dehydrator trays. Spread batter evenly.

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Dehydrate at 115 degrees for 5-6 hours. Flip and peel off Teflex sheets. You can score the bread with a pizza cutter or knife into 12-16 pieces. Dehydrate for another 1-2 hours. Break into pieces and store in an airtight container.

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The link between a healthy gut & happiness

January 16th, 2015

The Power of Pre-Biotics

You’ve probably heard that probiotics are good bacteria that are essential for your gut to be healthy and digest food optimally. You can take a probiotic supplement or eat foods like sauerkraut, yogurt, or miso that will increase the amount of these essential bacteria.

But have you heard about prebiotics?

Prebiotics are what feed the good bacteria and cause them to multiply, helping your digestion and your immune system function. You can get prebiotics from foods like raw dandelion greens, raw Jerusalem artichokes, and raw chicory roots.

But here’s a new twist: those prebiotics might make you happier too!
New research on humans suggests a connection between a healthy gut and lower anxiety, and that prebiotics lower cortisol levels, a stress hormone that has been linked to weight gain. Perhaps building and maintaining healthy gut bacteria is the next step in treating mental health, hormonal imbalances, and weight management.

For a recap of the study and conclusions read this Huffington Post article.

Episodes of gas, bloating, and lactose intolerance has decreased significantly, even when I eat foods I know are a problem for me. Small amounts no longer send me over the edge!

Nothing eclipses a healthy diet high in raw plant food, but careful supplementation can certainly help. I’ve been taking a pre/pro-biotic/digestive enzyme blend called Eaze since July. I reduced most of my digestive issues and food sensitivities through diet changes, but oh how I wish I’d been introduced to a pre/probiotic/enzyme combination earlier!

For a list of the different strains of pro/prebiotics in Eaze click HERE
To order click  HERE or contact me at jennifer@food2live4.com.


Chocolate Peanut Butter Bars

January 7th, 2015

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I’ve found several great recipes for Chocolate Peanut Butter Bars, but the trick is minimizing the coconut oil flavor so that non-raw and non-vegan eaters will love them as well. I’ve tweaked some standard recipes, using avocado and coconut BUTTER in place of some of the coconut oil. The consistency is creamy, and the flavor is a favorite with my vegan AND non vegan taste testers!

Crust
1 ½ cups almond meal
1/3 cup natural cocoa powder
¼ cup agave, maple syrup, or coconut nectar
2 tablespoons melted coconut OIL

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Filling
1 cup creamy peanut butter
6 tablespoons maple syrup
2 tablespoons melted coconut BUTTER
¼ tsp sea salt

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Topping
½ cup natural cocoa powder
¼ cup melted coconut BUTTER
¼ cup mashed avocado (about ½ of a small avocado)
6 tablespoons agave, maple syrup, or coconut nectar
¼ tsp vanilla extract

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Line an eight-inch square baking dish with parchment paper, making sure to leave some over hang on two ends.
In a medium bowl, combine the crust ingredients until a dough is formed. Press into the bottom of the baking dish.
Combine the filling ingredients and spread over the crust. Place in the freezer to set.

Combine the topping ingredients in a high-speed blender and blend until smooth. Spread over the peanut butter layer. Cover the pan and freeze for about an hour until firm.

Lift the solid bar from pan using the edges of the parchment paper. Cut into small pieces and store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to two weeks.


Quinoa & Polenta Cakes

November 2nd, 2014

Quinoa & Polenta Cakes served with Pesto, Hummus, and Marinara Sauce

While visiting Chicago last month, I ate at a lovely little restaurant called Le Pain Quotidien. I’ve recreated a dish they served that I loved and couldn’t stop craving!

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Quinoa

2 cups vegetable broth
1 cup quinoa

Combine vegetable broth and quinoa in a small pan and bring to a boil. Cover and simmer over low heat for about 20 minutes or until liquid is absorbed.

Polenta

2 cups water
1 tsp. salt
½ cup instant polenta cornmeal

Bring water and salt to a boil in a small pan. Slowly add cornmeal while continuously whisking until slightly thick.

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Cakes

Add quinoa to polenta and stir to combine. Press into a 9×13 baking dish lined with parchment or waxed paper and let cool. When set, flip onto a cutting board and peel away the paper. Cut into 8 equal squares.
Fry in batches in a sesame oil over medium heat, about 5 minutes per side.

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Serve

Top with your favorite homemade or store bought hummus, pesto (raw recipe), and marinara sauce, and serve over baby greens.

 


Crispy Flat Bread Pizza Crust

October 14th, 2014

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Crispy Flat Bread Pizza Crust

1 medium-large zucchini, cut into chunks
1 cup walnuts
*½ cup flax seeds, ground (I use a spice grinder or my Vitamix)
2 medium carrots, cut into chunks
1 cup cherry tomatoes
**2 jalapeno stuffed green olives
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tsp sea salt
½ tsp red pepper flakes
1 tsp dried parsley

 

Grind nuts in a food processor using the S blade. Remove to a large mixing bowl. Process the carrots into small pieces and then add the zucchini and olives and pulse chop until zucchini is in small pieces. Add to mixing bowl. Process the tomatoes and add to the bowl along with *ground flax seeds, olive oil and remaining ingredients. Stir well to combine.

Spread mixture onto one Teflex dehydrator sheet. Dehydrate at 115 degrees for 4 hours. Flip the teflex sheet over onto the mesh tray and peel away. Reduce heat to 105 and continue dehydrating for about 4 hours. You can dehydrate longer for a crispy cracker-like texture.

Cut crust into about 12 rectangles. You can top with a variety of things. Try hummus, olives, tomatoes and za’atar (a Lebanese blend seasoning) or guacamole and salsa!

*If you buy the flax seeds already ground, use about ¾ cup.

*Jalapeno stuffed olives are the secret ingredient, a trick I picked up from raw foods pioneer Alissa Cohen and her chef in Boston.


Fast & Fresh Cucumber Salad

August 18th, 2014

We have cucumbers in the garden ready to be picked, so I made a yummy salad last week. This is a lighter, more zingy version of the one my mom used to make.

Forgot to take a picture before the family dug in, but it was a pretty dish too!

Ingredients:
2 medium/large cucumbers peeled, seeded, and sliced
1/2 of a small red onion, peeled and very thinly sliced
1/3 to 1/2 cup rice wine vinegar
Seasoned Salt to taste (about 1 tsp)
2-3 tablespoons plain Greek yogurt

Let sit (or refrigerate) for 15 minutes. Stir in about 2 or 3 tablespoons plain Greek yogurt (optional)


Collard Green Taco Wraps

June 28th, 2014

What to do with fresh from the garden collard greens?
Wrap them up!
I made these last night as an appetizer for a casual dinner party and they were gone in a flash.

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Taco Nut Meat
1 1/2 cups raw walnuts, pecans, or pistachios
1 tablespoon ground cumin
1 1/2 tsp. ground coriander
2 tablespoons Bragg Liquid Aminos or nama shoyu, or tamari

Process nuts into small pieces in a food processor. Add remaining ingredients and pulse to mix well.
Wash about a dozen small collard green leaves and remove stems. Place in a bowl, and pour boiling water over. Drain immediately and rinse with cold water. Pat dry.
Place a heaping tablespoon of taco nut meat down the middle a collard green, top with avocado slices or guacamole, and your favorite fresh tomato salsa. Wrap and enjoy!


Spicy Black Bean Burgers

May 29th, 2014

Today is National Hamburger Day (or so I’m told) so I’m sharing my easy recipe for Black Bean Burgers. These burgers come together fast and are full of Good Stuff. And somewhere, a cow thanks you!

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Spicy Black Bean Burger

1 15 oz can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 cup shredded carrot (about 1 medium carrot)
1 cup shredded zucchini (about ½ medium zucchini)
½ cup diced yellow onion (about 1 small onion)
1 to 2 small cloves of garlic, pressed or chopped
3 tablespoons wheat free tamari or nama shoyu
¼ cup chopped cilantro
½ tsp each of the following spices: cumin, chili powder, cayenne pepper, black pepper
1 cup of rolled oats
olive oil for frying

Heat 1 to 2 tsp of olive oil in a medium skillet on medium to medium low heat. Add grated zucchini, carrots, onion, and garlic and cook until soft, about 5 minutes.

In a food processor, pulse chop the black beans, tamari, and dried spices until semi creamy, but with some chunkiness. Add the cooked veggies and pulse until combined. Add the rolled oats and the cilantro and pulse until combined.

Heat 1 to 2 tsp oil in a skillet on medium to medium low heat. Use about a ¼ cup of the bean mixture to form each patty. Fry for 2 to 3 minutes on each side, until slightly browned and heated through. Will make 9 to 10 patties.

Serve with sliced avocado and your favorite fresh salsa.
Enjoy!