Thursday, May 23, 2013

Easy as 1, 2, 3




3 Ingredient Salad

Organic cilantro or flat leaf parsley, rough chop

1 carton organic cherry tomatoes, halved

2-3 organic cucumbers, rough chop

Place everything in a bowl and dress with The World's Easiest Dressing.

 

The World's Easiest Dressing

Juice of 1 organic tangelo
 
 
 
I have been stressing how my diet has become so simple over the past several months due to me reading and studying about a low fat, raw, vegan diet. Even though my diet was not necessarily high fat, raw prior, it is just better now, eating the majority of my meals simply. In the past some of my recipes would have several ingredients and now they have as few as 2-4. 
I have to say that I haven't been happier with my food choices. My palate has changed even more than it did when I first started eating a raw diet almost 4 years ago. I have also noticed that I need considerably less food. With the exception of fruit mono meals. When I do have my fruit mono meals they are quite large!! But in general I seem to need less food. I went down to two main meals a day and no snacking in between. Whereas in the past I would have 3 raw meals a day and snack on fruit and veggies in between meals.
I am trying to follow my body's natural cycles throughout the day. Aiming to eat between midday and 5:30pm. Did you even know our bodies had natural cycles for digestion, absorption and elimination?? I didn't! Most people wouldn't, since our diets have been tainted with so many processed foods and toxins. No wonder so many people are constipated and suffering from dis-ease due to nutritional deficiencies and exposure to toxins in our foods and environment.
The light bulb went off for me about a month into my raw journey four years ago. I noticed a distinct pattern to my elimination--if you know what I mean. I began working like a well oiled machine and am forever grateful that it is still that way today.
So what are our cycles? Well they look a little like this (I am over simplifying here)

Digestion occurs midday to 8:00 pm

Absorption is between 8:00 pm and 4:00 am

Elimination is between 4:00 am to midday

I do my best not to eat during the absorption and elimination cycles. No late night snacking and no solids until I have achieved elimination. Making this simple change was literally life-changing for me. So many things improved on so many levels.
My first solid meal is considered a breakfast, I am breaking my fast, but it just isn't at the traditional time of day that most Americans consume breakfast.
In a future post I will outline just how a typical day plays out for me as far as my drinks and meals for the day.
 
  
 
 
+JMJ+ Today I am grateful for a most memorable graduation ceremony for our oldest child. I still am in denial that her home school journey is over and she will be off to college. So sad, yet so joyous.

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Eat More Sprouts! Grow Them Yourself!

I mentioned the other day how grateful I am that summer is coming and therefore berries are beginning to appear at the markets. Blueberries are a favorite of mine and I adore them in salads.

This is not your traditional salad though. You know me, loads of fruit is usually involved and of course sprouts! The star green of this salad is sunflower. I added organic celery for some crunch and natural saltiness. The dressing couldn't be easier--2 bananas well blended. Top it off with some sprouted raw buckwheat and you have one amazing salad.

Blueberry and  Greens Salad 

by Elizabeth @ rawlivingandlearning.blogspot.com

 

2 1/2 C sunflower greens

3 stalks of organic celery, diced

6 oz organic blueberries

2 bananas, blended well

1/3 C sprouted raw buckwheat

 

Plate the greens and add the diced celery. Sprinkle on the blueberries. In a small blender or food processor, blend the 2 bananas until creamy. Pour banana dressing over the blueberries and garnish with the sprouted buckwheat. Enjoy! Your cells will be smiling!!


If you haven't tried growing your own greens yet I say give it a go! It is so easy and so cheap. Once you begin you'll get hooked--and that's a good thing. You will be positively affecting your most important asset; your health!
Looking for a great tutorial, that's FREE? Here it is. No excuses--I have pasted Sproutpeople's instructions for spouting/growing just about any seed you can think of. He has videos showing you how to sprout. Just click on the type of sprout you'd like to grow down below, and scroll down that specific page a bit and you'll see his instructional video there. Have fun!! 

Keep in mind that I learned from them but chose to use recyclable materials for my sprouting vessels. For example my sprouting jars are applesauce jars that I saved and squares cut from leftover screen material act as my "lids" and I attach those with the rubber bands that I keep from Whole Foods--the ones they put on your berry and tomato containers. You do not need to purchase fancy sprouting supplies; use your imagination and safe even more money. In the beginning I used metal food trays for my sprouting trays. Once I felt comfortable sprouting/growing my own greens I upgraded to the standard black trays shown here.


 Instructions for Growing Everything: Sproutpeople


This page is here to give you another way to get to the core of Sproutpeople - our Detailed Pages.
Every seed and mix we offer (and some we don't) has such a page. They contain thorough growing instructions, videos, recipes, and much more. If you haven't seen those pages you haven't seen our site. We don't want that (I (Gil) have spent actual years writing this site. I NEED you to see those pages =;-), so here are links to get you to them.

Click the name of the seed or mix you want to grow to go to its detail page.
Click the name of a Sprouter to go to its detail page.

You can get to these same pages by using our menu bar and navigating through our links, but for those of you who like a list - here you go. Unlike much of our site, this page is alphabetically organized.

Bean Sprouts


Adzuki Beans
Beanie's Awesome Mix
Black Turtle Beans
Christmas Present
Garbanzo Beans - Beige - Large
Garbanzo Beans - Beige - Small
Garbanzo Beans - Black
Garbanzo Beans - Brown
Garbanzoid
Great Beans & Rice
Halloween Treat
Lentil - Black
Lentil - Crimson
Lentil - Eston
Lentil - French Blue
Lentil - Green
Lentil - Orange
Lentil - Pardina
Lentil - Red Chief
Lentil - White
Mung Beans
Mix #47 - Neville's Midnight Moon
Pea - Bill Jump
Pea - Green
Pea - Marrowfat
Pea - Speckled
Pea - Yellow
PeaBanzo
Pea Carnival
Peanuts
Peasant Mix
Pinto Beans
San Francisco Mix
Soy Beans
Spring Garden




Brassica Sprouts


Broccoli Sprouts
Cabbage - Green
Cabbage - Red
Hot2
Kale - Red Russian
Long Life Mix
Mustard
Radish
Tatsoi




Critter Crops


4 Legs of Love
Bird Mix - Lil' Bird
Bird Mix - Mid Bird
Bird Mix - Big Bird
Dr. Bird
Kat Grass




Exotic Sprouts


Clem's Choice - Mix #9
Dill
Fenugreek
Garlic
Hot + Sweet
Leek
Mother's Mix
Onion
Sweet Pea




Grain Sprouts


Amber Waves of Grain
Barley Sprouts
Corn - Blue
Corn - Yellow
Kamut
Millet
Oats
Oats and Groats
Rice - Brown
Rice - Red Thai
Rice - Wehani
Rice - Wild
Rye
Spelt
Triticale
Wheat




Grass


Barley Grass
Kat Grass
Oat Grass
Rye Grass
Spelt Grass
Triticale Grass
Wheat Grass




Greens


Buckwheat Lettuce
Mesclun Mix (a thing of the past)
Nalo Greens
Pea Shoots
Popcorn Shoots
Spicy Salad Greens
Sunflower Greens




Leafy Sprouts


Alfalfa
Clover
French Garden
Italian Blend
Mother's Mix
Moo Mix
Nick's Hot Sprout Salad
Oriental Greens
Russian Mix
Spicy Mix




Micro-Greens


Arugula
Broccoli Greens
Bruno's Indoor Garden
Cabbage Patch
Celery Greens
Chia
Cress - Curly
Flax Greens
Garlic Chives
Kale Micros
Leafy Micros
Mizuna
Mustards Greens
Spring Onion
Tatsoi
Turnip Greens




Nuts, Seeds & Pseudograins


Almonds
Amaranth
Buckwheat Groats
Hemp
Madison Market Mix
Peanuts
Pumpkin
Quinoa
Sesame - Black
Sesame - Natural
Sunflower Seeds




Sprouters


Bio-Set
Bio-Salad
Easy Sprout
Hemp Bag
Jar Sprouter
Miniature Garden
SproutMaster 5x6
SproutMaster 8x10
Trays
Tube Sprouter






The Basics of Sprouting:


  • Seed Storage: Keeping your dormant seeds happy.
  • Soaking: Turning a dormant seed into a nutritional powerhouse.
  • Rinsing: Water is the key ingredient in sprouts. Use it liberally.
  • Draining: It is essential that sprouts be drained thoroughly after rinsing. Sitting in a puddle is the most common cause of crop failure.
  • Air Circulation: If your sprouts can’t breathe while growing - they can die. Don’t put them in a closed cabinet.
  • Greening: Photosynthesis is cool, and so is Chlorophyll, but not all sprouts are into it, nor is it necessary. Sprouts of all colors are packed with flavor and nutrition!
  • Cleanliness: Your seed should be clean and your sprouting device should be sterile. Wash your sprouter well between crops. Sterilize when necessary.
  • Storage: Properly stored, fresh sprouts will keep for up to 6 weeks in your refrigerator but fresher is better. Never refrigerate wet sprouts.
  • Eat More Sprouts! Grow More Often!

Here is the link to their website http://sproutpeople.org/sprouts/grow/instructions.html

Welcome to Sproutpeople University!
We call this class Sprouting 101


If you pay attention you will learn the most basic truths of sprouting - according to us Sproutpeople.






The Basics of Sprouting:


  • Seed Storage: Keeping your dormant seeds happy.
  • Soaking: Turning a dormant seed into a nutritional powerhouse.
  • Rinsing: Water is the key ingredient in sprouts. Use it liberally.
  • Draining: It is essential that sprouts be drained thoroughly after rinsing. Sitting in a puddle is the most common cause of crop failure.
  • Air Circulation: If your sprouts can’t breathe while growing - they can die. Don’t put them in a closed cabinet.
  • Greening: Photosynthesis is cool, and so is Chlorophyll, but not all sprouts are into it, nor is it necessary. Sprouts of all colors are packed with flavor and nutrition!
  • Cleanliness: Your seed should be clean and your sprouting device should be sterile. Wash your sprouter well between crops. Sterilize when necessary.
  • Storage: Properly stored, fresh sprouts will keep for up to 6 weeks in your refrigerator but fresher is better. Never refrigerate wet sprouts.
  • Eat More Sprouts! Grow More Often!



Click the links below for a thorough education, in each area of study.

Seed Storage


Dormant seeds can last for centuries - or weeks. Learn what you can do to keep them viable for as long as possible.





Seed Prep


Though it is not always necessary, it is always a good idea to Prep your seeds before you Soak them.



Soaking


Dry seeds are dormant.

Soaking a seed ends it's dormancy and begins a new life.
In nature this seed will make a plant which can, in turn make seeds, which can in turn make more plants, which can make More Seeds which make More Plants and more and More and MORE!

We eat all this potential. Its no wonder sprouts are SO nutritious!

REMEMBER: Once a seed has soaked up it's fill of water, it is Alive! It is now a nutritional phenomenon, with its own enzymes - it will take nothing but will only add to your body. We are used to sprouts having tails, but they don't have to. You can eat any soaked seed and know that you are giving your body an amazing nutritional gift.



Rinsing


Given proper moisture a seed will germinate.

Rinsing is the process by which we add moisture to our sprouts. Draining is the process by which we regulate the amount of moisture our sprouts have available - until their next Rinse.

The Sproutpeople's Principals of Rinsing:

Use cool water (60-70°F)
Use a lot of water
Use high pressure water whenever possible.
Rinse 2-3 times daily.



Draining


The Sproutpeople's Principals of Draining:

Drain as much of the Rinse water
out of your sprouts
as is humanly possible.

Be Thorough!



Air Circulation


In between Rinse and Drain cycles your sprouts do their growing. During that time it is essential that they can breathe. The best sprouting devices help them breathe, but you need to pay some attention too. There isn't much to it - sprouts can grow just about anywhere - as long as they can breathe, but don't have so much air movement that they dry out between Rinses.

We set our sprouter on our kitchen counter. We don't mind the diffuse sunlight or the 150 watts of incandescent light. Light just does not matter much. A plant can only perform photosynthesis when it has leaves. Until then light has little if any effect, and they need to breathe - so don't hide your sprouts!



Greening


On the day your Sprouts are ready to take in light - when their cotyledons (leaves) have shed their hulls or are about to - allow your sprouts light - if you've been keeping it from them. If you grow them - like we do - where light is already available, just watch the magic (it'll take a couple days so you might want to grab a sandwich if you plan on watching every moment @:-)

If you are Growing Grass or Greens you will have kept the light away most likely, so now is the time to uncover them. When you see them growing tall (an inch or so for Grass and 1-2 inches for Greens) but yellow (sans chlorophyll), uncover the container and move it to a well lit location.



Planting


Some of the crops we offer can or must be planted on soil or another moisture retaining medium. Click to learn all about planting.



When Are They Done?


You will find the answer to this question on each and every seed "detail" page. Follow that link, click the seed category (ie - if you're looking for Alfalfa, click Leafy), then click the name of the seed you want to know about (ie - once on the Leafy page, click Alfalfa). You may also use our new (is 2010 still new?) "Back Door" to those same detail pages.



De-Hulling


De-hulling is the process of removing hulls (seed coats) from your finished sprouts.

We don't de-hull much. We never bother with Beans, we brush what we can off of our Greens - and since we grow our Leafy sprouts vertically, the hulls fall off naturally as we rinse. The only sprouts we always de-hull are Brassicas.



Storing your Harvest


Before moving your sprouts to that big cool box in your kitchen, they should be dry to the touch. In most cases we let our sprouts sit for 8-12 hours after their final Rinse, and extremely thorough Drain before we refrigerate them, but if our salad spinner can contain them, we use it.



Sprouter Cleanliness


You should thoroughly clean your Sprouter as often as you can. We wash thoroughly with soap and water between crops, or use the dishwasher (if the sprouter can take it). It is always best to have a clean Sprouter - that way your crop will have a head start. You can sterilize your Sprouter too - and you should - especially if you start having crop failures.



Travel Sprouting


It isn't actually a basic element of sprouting, but if you are lucky enough to be on the road, we'll tell you how to keep on sproutin'


+JMJ+ Today I am grateful for great insructors.

Friday, May 10, 2013

Super Simple Sandwiches

 
One of my favorite raw breads has to be Lisa's raw onion bread. I make a few changes but it is about the same process. I add about 2 cups of leftover carrot pulp from our carrot juice and she uses just 2 shredded carrots. I prefer the texture you get when using carrot pulp; it gives it a more bread-like texture. I also omit the salt and use less oil, substituting flax oil for her olive oil.
Here is Lisa's recipe from Rawon10.com, with my adjustments put in parenthesis:
 

1 cup ground flax seeds

1 cup water

3 medium onions, thinly sliced

2 large carrots, grated (I use 2 C carrot pulp)

1 teaspoon salt (I omit)

3 tablespoons olive oil (I use 1 T Flax oil)

Mix together the ground flax seeds and water. Let sit for several minutes to gel. Slice the onions very thinly and grate the carrots (I used the food processor for both). Stir together and add the salt. Spread out on lined dehydrator sheets and dehydrate for about an hour. When top is a bit dry to the touch, flip and continue drying on the other side. Let dry another couple hours until dry but not brittle. I used kitchen scissors to cut the bread into shapes.


 Making raw bread, for me, is not an exact science. You just toss in ingredients and mix until you get the consistency you like when spreading it onto the dehydrator's Teflex sheets. I like how each and every batch turns out a little bit different.
 
 Here is my post about making her bread along with a spinach guacamole dip recipe of mine.
 
To top my sandwiches I simply sliced one small Haas avocado and added thinly sliced tomatoes, garnishing with my homegrown broccoli sprouts. Super simple!

Having a stash of this amazing raw bread in the freezer is a must. So when I make a batch I use all 5 trays in my Excalibur dehydrator. That way I have enough raw bread for months. I only eat it about two-three times a month. It keeps well in the freezer and thaws out in less than 5 minutes.

+JMJ+ Today I am grateful for an organized garage....still in progress, but coming along nicely.

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Berries are Coming into Season

I get so excited when I start to see organic berries in the store. I know summer is on its way and that means time to enjoy a whole new season of organic fruits and vegetables. I have been a bit on berry overload the past few weeks but hey, that isn't a bad thing. Most of us know that berries are power houses of nutrition and antioxidants. Berries do a body good! Right?? I have been incorporating berries into a ton of recipes these past few weeks and will be sharing many of them with you. Two stars shine in this raw soup, dandelion greens and organic blueberries.

Dandelion Soup

 
For this raw soup the star green was dandelion. Dandelion is probably one of the first greens, next to kale that I added to my diet the moment I went raw. Star quality this green has (note the Vitamin K content below). Have you ever researched the nutritional content of your food? Once you begin it can become a habit. Knowing the nutritional content of what you are eating is very empowering. As I'm eating now I tend to think about all of the benefits the foods have and how they will be working in my body to nourish, detox and heal. It has made eating a joy for me where years ago it was more of a chore. I didn't enjoy preparing cooked foods very much, it seemed like a ton of work. Preparing raw, whole foods is so simple and quick that I now have the time to actually enjoy my food and focus on the nutritional benefits. Take a look at this chart listing the nutrition facts in just one cup of dandelion greens. Remember that my smoothie and soup recipes usually contain 3 cups of greens, so you will actually be getting 3x this much nutrition.
 
Nutrition Facts
Dandelion Greens Raw          
Serving Size 55g
Calories 25
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 0.39g1%
    Saturated Fat 0.094g0%
Cholesterol 0mg0%
Sodium 42mg2%
Total Carbohydrate 5.1g2%
    Dietary Fiber 1.9g8%
    Sugar 0.4g~
Protein 1.5g~
Vitamin A112%Vitamin C32%
Calcium10%Iron10%
*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Vitamins  %DV
Vitamin A 5588.55IU112%
    Retinol equivalents 279.4μg~
    Retinol 0μg~
    Alpha-carotene 199.65μg~
    Beta-carotene 3219.7μg~
    Beta-cryptoxanthin 66.55μg~
Vitamin C 19.25mg32%
Vitamin E 1.89mg9%
Vitamin K 428.12μg535%
Vitamin B12 0μg0%
Thiamin 0.105mg7%
Riboflavin 0.143mg8%
Niacin 0.443mg2%
Pantothenic acid 0.046mg0%
Vitamin B6 0.138mg7%
Folate 14.85μg4%
    Folic Acid 0μg~
    Food Folate 14.85μg~
    Dietary Folate Equivalents 14.85μg~
Choline 19.42mg~
Lycopene 0μg~
Lutein+zeazanthin 7485.5μg~
Minerals  %DV
Calcium 102.85mg10%
Iron 1.71mg10%
Magnesium 19.8mg5%
Phosphorus 36.3mg4%
Sodium 42mg2%
Potassium 218.35mg6%
Zinc 0.23mg2%
Copper 0.094mg5%
Manganese 0.188mg9%
Selenium 0.28μg0%
Water 47.08g~
Ash 0.99g~
Stats
Percent of Daily Calorie Target
(2000 calories)
1.25%
Percent Water Composition85.6%
Protein to Carb Ratio (g/g)0.29g


* Percent Daily Values are for adults or children aged 4 or older, and are based on a 2,000 calorie reference diet.
Source: USDA National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference, Release 20.
Each "~" denotes a missing value.

Read more at http://www.healthaliciousness.com/nutritionfacts/nutrition-facts-compare.php#voUAlIVC8XKeCss1.99

Dandelion Soup


Serves 3 or 1 hungry foodie (I eat the whole batch)
by Elizabeth @ rawlivingandlearning.blogspot.com

3 organic bananas
1/4 oz frozen mango
1 T freshly ground flax seeds
3 C dandelion greens
a few drops of vanilla
water for blending, adjust for your desired consistency
Garnish: 6 oz fresh, organic blueberries
Directions:
In a blender, blend all of the ingredients, except the blueberries. Pour into a bowl and garnish with the fresh blueberries. Enjoy!

You can be thinking of these positive benefits while munching on the garnish for this yummy soup:
(source: http://www.healthaliciousness.com/fruits/blueberry.php )

Health Benefits of Blueberries:



  • Increased Immune Function
  • Protection Against Heart Disease
  • Alzheimer's Protection
  • Osteoporosis Protection
  • Antioxidant Protection
  • Prevention of Epileptic Seizures
  • Prevention of Alopecia (Spot Baldness)
  • Packed with antioxidants, blueberries have been shown to reduce the risk of cancer, alleviate the effects of Alzheimer's, and may help prevent urinary tract infections. Furthermore, anthocyanins, proanthocyanidins, flavonols, and tannins found in blueberries have been shown to inhibit cancer cell development.
    *Some of these health benefits are due to the nutrients highly concentrated in Blueberries, and may not necessarily be related to Blueberries.
 
Read more at http://www.healthaliciousness.com/fruits/blueberry.php#HAx3AhWveQo3CJXB.99

Also wanted to share this juicer giveaway contest. Click this link to enter!!
http://www.chrisbeatcancer.com/bella-nutripro-cold-press-juicer-review-and-giveaway


+JMJ+ Today I am grateful for AMAZINGLY good news from my Mom ;)