Thursday, May 10, 2012

Craisinookies ... Breakfast of Champions!

I was in the mood to try another Raw Food dessert recipe that I could use as sort of a breakfast replacement when we're in a rush in the mornings.

I decided on the cranberry scones recipe in the Raw Family Signature Dishes book by Victoria Boutenko. Her's looked more "fluffy" and more cake-like in texture. It's got plenty of nutrition to keep those hunger pangs away until the next meal and they looked really good, so here I go!

 
I started with the dry ingredients of walnuts and flaxseeds. I actually had a little too much walnut, but I didn't think it would matter too much. I used the food processor and it worked great on the walnuts, but for the flaxseeds I used my magic bullet with the flat blades for grinding. This step went pretty quick.



Next, the wet ingredients. I chose red apples, carrots, dried cranberries instead of fresh and raisins and put them all together in the processor with the s blade.


 
Put it all together with the agave and lemon juice and shaped them onto the dehydrator sheets. I made mine look like little triangles instead of a ball because I figured they'd turn out a bit dense instead of cake-like. I put them on 105 for the next 18 hours.




These turned out to be very good cookies! Especially, once I added my ground coconut with a little stevia on top! Now they're cookies, and I'd say they take on the personality of a fruit bar. Very tasty!


Just like some other Raw Food Recipes I've tried, this one is unique and can't even come close to a traditional scone. I still have a problem trying to call these 'converting' recipes when they just might make someone run the other way! I think they should be called Craisinookies!

It's a very good cookie and I left mine a bit soft but if you like them crunchy, let them dry longer. It also made a lot more cookies so I put some in the freezer.

And if you're wondering if they still fulfilled my desire to be a breakfast substitute... yes! These make a great breakfast bars, but I still made my green juice to go with it!

Happy Converting!













Thursday, May 3, 2012

Attempting to be a Raw Foodie Blogger Today!


A little story first...

A few nights ago, I made a yummy treat called Haupia. I call it Hawaiian jello. I figured, since it was made with coconut milk powder that it would be a safe and delicious treat for my son, who is allergic to dairy products, namingly casein. Unfortunately, about one minute after devouring his first bite, he felt 'shakey'. Which is the first symptom, among many that he's just eaten milk. WHAT? I couldn't believe it. I had no clue why he was reacting to coconut milk. Then, after a few minutes of researching, I found out that coconut milk powder is made by boiling the coconut in MILK first, then dehydrating. UGH! How on earth could I have known? Why didn't this package have any warnings on it, like all the other items sold at our stores? I figured, I'd just have to make it myself to be safe. 

As luck would have it, I had just seen a wonderful post about coconut milk at Rawmazing.com. I happen to visit her site quite a lot because it's full of wonderful raw recipes, presentations and ideas! Anyway, she had made a wonderful coconut milk to go with a Pad Thai recipe and made coconut flour too. I decided to go for it and make the whole thing! I visited her blog, printed out the recipe and drooled over the photos again!


Warning: my pics are just for evidence!

1 Coconut = 20oz!
I started out with the coconut milk recipe. This was my first attempt at opening a coconut. Even the clerk at the store asked me how I was going to open it. I told him I would attempt to be professional at first, and if that didn't work I'd throw it on the ground like a monkey! (Guess what? I actually ended up doing the Monkey method!) It was difficult to peel the skin off. I'd say that was the hardest part. I saved the water and blended it all up. Strained it through the bad and viola! Coconut milk! It tasted great too!


Dried Coconut Flour (with absorber packets)
Then I took the pulp and put it in my excalibur dehydrator. The hardest part of that was figuring out where to put the two trays so the fan wouldn't blow it out the door! Both on the bottom and put four more trays with liners above them and closed the door. It worked great. When it was done I put it back in the blender and made flour!




Now for the actual Pad Thai recipe. I had several of the ingredients already, but needed a few more. I ended up substituting some of them. Like the almond butter. I happened to have some vegan butter and it's kind of nutty tasting, so I used that, just not as much. Then instead of Agave, I used a little honey. I bought some bean sprouts a few days prior and they'd already gone bad, so I omitted them entirely. I followed everything else but kept almost all of it at room temperature and ran the kelp noodles under hot water to warm them up before mixing.

Oh, and wished Susan of Rawmazing.com lived next door to come check my work! LOL

My Pad Thai!
I loved it! It was such a wonderful mix of flavors. The chili flakes really added a surprise end to every bite. My 12 yro son loved it to much he even went back for seconds!

I can't wait to make more goodies with the leftover coconut milk and flour I have! Now I can cross out the "figure out how to open a coconut" item on my bucket list!




Wednesday, May 2, 2012

What's so bad about Eco friendly fabric softener and dryer sheets?

My interest was peaked from reading an article from Natural News about nasty chemicals in these products. I figured that I was smarter than the average Jo (hehe) for buying the Free and Clear, unscented (I know allllll about phthalates! yes those are bad!) but when the article mentioned that these were being marketed as eco friendly fabric softeners, I just had to check it out.
ecofriendly dryer sheet ingredients
So, the first thing I did of course, was to grab my box of Snuggle Free and Clear fabric softener sheets and look at the ingredients. 
Well, not much help there! 

Next, I went to the Sun Products Corp website to download their ingredient list. At least I found an ingredients list! And, it only had four items. First one, I knew. Second and third, fatty acids, fourth, more commonly found on batteries when they've sat in an electronic device too long. (You know, that white stuff that forms at the ends?)

I won't bore you with bulleted lists and molecular breakdowns of strains, etc. But when all my investigative reading on reports of human impact on these ingredients was done, nothing stood out more to me than the Potassium Hydroxide (from the batteries).

Potassium Hydroxide isn't really that bad for you in it's dryer sheet form. But it was the fact that it's main function (when mixed with the other ingredients) is to break down the structure of the fabric. Of course, images of lint screens and dust in my laundry room flashed in my head as to why our socks get thinner and thinner each time they're washed, or actually dried.

My friends in Germany are always saying that drying your clothes in the dryer is bad for them because it makes them shrink and fall apart, besides hanging them on the line to dry is better for the environment. Looks like they scored the points for this one.

However, when your water is so hard that the socks from the line can stand by themselves, it's hard for me to separate myself from my dryer, or my dryer sheets for that matter. These eco friendly Free and Clear ones seem to be ok for me. I've done one more thing for the planet too, I've moved to a warmed climate and therefore, don't need socks in my sandals! That's something we teach Germans NOT to do when they come to Florida! LOL It's all in fun! ;D

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Ani Phyo's Custard Tarts Recipe Adventure!

I said I'd do this ... so here it goes!

Here's a recipe from the raw food conversion expert, Ani Phyo that looked worth trying. She shared this recipe on her webpage for free and on the tv show "View from the Bay" which is on her website too. It looked sooo good! I just had to try.

So, today we're visiting family and I thought I'd bring them this obviously decadent dessert to try out. There weren't any problems with the recipe, it was very easy. I used a mini-muffin pan with plastic wrap underneath to form the crust. Used a knife to drop the topping on and used a raspberry on top. The only thing I thought was missing was a mint leaf.


They came out so pretty!

Time to put 'em to the test....

I called in the boys.

My oldest, the bravest when it comes to these new recipes, tried it first.

After a crinkle in his nose, he threw another raspberry in the "chase" it! He said, "It was half ok, it really wanted to be whole ok, but it was just half." He didn't ask for another one.

My youngest, went for it because it looked so good. But, within five or six good chews, ran to the kitchen. Then he ate a handful of raspberries. Well, so much for that opinion.

I liked that it wasn't too sweet, but it was too oily. The fats from all those nuts really coats your pallet. I too ate a handful of raspberries afterwards.

Hubby popped one in and said the same thing I did. As well as, it needed butter, sugar and a mint leaf. He's just not grasped the "raw food" concept yet.

I won't be trying these again. It's one of those recipes that I was encouraged to try, but again it's a conversion-type recipe that looks like one thing, but tastes like another.

Oh, and I did grab a picture this time. They sure are photogenic!

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Raw Food Recipes: Failure to Convert?

Why do Raw Food Recipes always try to convert people from hamburgers or lasagna?

It can't work! (ok, I you know I'm talking about myself here)

Your eyes are fooled into thinking you're going to get a beefy, greasy, sloppy Joe right? But, noooooo.... you're about to get a surprise! Not even close to what you thought you'd get.

And take the Lasagna example. Looks like pasta, cheese, meat and sauce. But it's nuts, nuts, nuts with probiotics (to taste like souring cheese), and tomatoes. Eeeeww!

So, why bother trying to convert a meal meant for meat eaters into a raw food diet?

The reasons for me converting to a raw or mostly vegan lifestyle was for health. I want to eat lighter, cleaner, more nutritious, natural foods and get away from the typical western diet. I thought that was the same for all raw or vegans, but I guess not.

So, having a taste (and sometimes a ferocious craving) for those western foods, I certainly don't want to try and make those recipes "look" like the stuff I'm trying to get away from.

I'm actually less worried about how it'll taste (compared to the real thing) as I am worried that it'll trigger old habits and cause me to fall off my wagon!

That being said, I really, REALLY enjoy eating new recipes of new fruits, vegetables and combinations for juicing that I've never had before now. I am slowly replacing my old favorites with new favorites!

Today's lunch, a rice wrapped salad with sprouted beans, zucchini hummus and ginger dressing!

WOW!

There's just no western diet comparison!!!

Too bad I ate it before taking a photo! (Next time)

Well, tomorrow I'm making Ani Phyo's custard tartlettes. I'll try to post a pic before they're all gone!

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Eco-Transformer? What's That? Video

This definitely belongs on the eco-converts blog!

I'm amazed at this cool umm.... motorcycle, is it? Believe it or not, this started out as another High School Science Fair project has turned into something amazing!
Check it out at http://bpg-motors.com/



Sunday, January 2, 2011

Hey Guess What? There Are 'NO LAWS' in Florida this year!

Oh my goodness! What should I do first?!!!!

I was searching for new laws for 2011 and found many news ones, especially in "the western U.S." like California and Oregon.

But look what I found when I searched for laws in Florida 2011:

I'm pretty sure they meant that there are no "new" laws this year.

Have a giggle!

Saturday, January 1, 2011

New Year's Re-Resolution: Muffin Top Meltdown

orget all those attempted, and possibly failed, new year's resolutions from last year and begin anew. Hopefully, "trying" to fulfill a resolution is where the problems begin. Don't try to reach a goal, act as if you've already attained it and go from there. I don't believe that if you "believe you can achieve", I believe in "fake it till ya make it!" So, if you don't see any difference in those two statements, pick the one you like better. ;D

It's a cliché for sure, but losing weight and better health overall is one of the big ones. Although, google reports that it was "how old is Dick Clark" as one of the top 10!

My resolution is the same one as last year but this year I'm not going to "try", I'm going to "do"! After having seen the documentary "Crazy, Sexy Cancer" and learning about vitamin B17 from Edward Griffin, I'm getting an education is what's missing and what my body actually needs.

For example. I'm learning more about the synergy of nutrients in foods and how you just can't take a particular vitamin or enzyme out of, let's say an apple, and expect it to work the same way as eating that entire apple, including the seeds. So, eating more whole, raw foods is a big one on my list. It'll be even more important to grow my own since the latest power grab of agra biz now has control of just about everything that goes into our mouths. Until I can get a big enough garden going, I'll just shop at my favorite organic market. Here, it's the Fresh Market in Fort Myers. Even SweetBay's newest store in Cape Coral has a good variety of organic veggies.

I've tried many vegan (not completely raw) recipes this past year and some are really awesome and a few were really nasty! I don't like couscous in bland recipes, but it's good with a spicy Indian dish. I also found out that baking sliced tofu marinated with liquid smoke makes a great grilled panini with other veggies on it.

So, today begins the detox from the holidays and the removal of my new muffin top I've acquired over the last two months!

I think I'll start with this:



Looks good doesn't it?! (I'll let you know)

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Books Boxes and Drawers Are Out - Recipes Go Online Now

So, your Aunt Alice is dying to know where you learned to make this fantastic pumpkin roll cake you made and is begging for the recipe! Only one problem... you can't find it. A month later, viola! There it is, stuck to the back of the prime rib recipe you made on the same day!

Has this ever happened to you? Does your recipe box look like it was used as a trash bin? Wrinkled and stained pieces of paper with grandma's writing. Some stuck together and completely illegible? Well, even though those are signs of a well-loved recipe, it sure is irritating when trying to find it! And instead of dealing with "the drawer" I usually end up searching for it online.




Ok, it just dawned on me that I could add my drawer of recipes to my online recipe box this way without ever having to type it in! So, in about five minutes I've added over 20 recipes without doing the data entry myself. Efficiency is in my dna!

About 9 out of 10 times I'm end up at http://www.allrecipes.com/ and search for the title of what I'm looking for. Then, I look for the one with the highest ratings and take a look. If it's anything that's close to what mine looked like, I'll take it! I just add it to my recipe box online and keep it there. How great is that? Oh, and when I actually make a recipe, I look in the comments under it. It's like having a consumer reports for recipes! Tons of reviews from real people making them and posting their 'tweaks' if any, that changed it for the better.
There I go gettin' all giddy about organizing and creating shortcuts again! My family says I'm a little crazy about it, but you know what? They enjoy the feng shui of it as much as I do! ohhmmmmmm

Monday, November 29, 2010

Stop Clicking Ads that pay the advertiser and PAY YOURSELF THAT COMMISSION!

Anyone shopping on the internet for deals has GOT to use this! BigCrumbs gives YOU the money they would normally give to those who place big flashy ads on the web. You can get the affiliate's commission instead! If you know others, of course, you'll refer them too and earn a reward. So share your links, it's a small world and when we help eachother we win!

I've received $33.00 this month with just the Christmas shopping I've done and there's still a month left before Christmas!

Click the link below, register, then shop!

Friday, May 14, 2010

Neat Video About Bottled Water

What IS Bottled Water Anyway?

The subject of water quality has come up several times in the last few weeks and I thought it'd be great to share this video.

From the makers of the famous video "The Story of Stuff" comes another one called "The Story of Bottled Water"

I agree with most of what's in this, except the part about tap water being an overall favorite in taste tests. I personally don't feel that chlorine and fluoride taste good, not to mention the possible health implications.

What I think is most disturbing about bottled water is that these corporations, like coca cola and nestle are actually pumping the water into the bottles from reservoirs in our own back yards and then selling it back to us at 10,000 times the price as our tap water would cost!

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Making A Difference: HATCH Film Festival

I wanted to let you know about a new short film award from explore.org and the HATCH Film Festival.

The explore/Hatch Award will be presented to the filmmaker whose short film shows a group or individual hero striving for a better world through selfless acts.

If you or anyone you know has created a film highlighting a cause that inspires others to make a difference, submissions are now open.

The winner will receive a full expense paid trip to HATCHFest where they will have the chance to meet with prominent mentors as well as receive a prize from the explore.org co-founder, Charles Annenberg Weingarten. Submissions are due on March 25th.

Please be aware that the due date is creeping up - view full contest
guidelines and submissions info at the following link:

http://www.hatchasheville.org/explore/index.html
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