Frozen treats, hold the cow juice

Image:Granita brioche.JPGFruits and veggies ripen every day, and I’ve spent too many of those days not writing in YaD!

With my roommate’s acquisition of a Vita-Mix, a new level of frozen treat heaven has opened up. Yesterday, we tried a strawberry frozen yogurt. Today, I see in A Mighty Appetite yet more ideas. None of these need cream, and you could introduce vegan alternatives in all of them.

With conventional dairy full of sketchy hormones and more nutrition experts saying “What the heck are we doing drinking something designed for baby cows??” it’s a good time to seek other options. And really, the fresh ingredients will thank you for letting them shine.

For chocolatey and creamy flavors, I’ve found good vanilla extract or paste works wonders. It makes the whole thing taste richer.

For refreshing nummies, freeze all the fruits you can get your hands on and then combine and puree them however and whenever you see fit.

Frozen bananas are the best-kept non-dairy secret ever. Their flavor and texture is identical to a banana ice cream. Their banana flavor is very strong, though, so skip that tip if you’re not into them.

And for a nice granita, all you need is some fruit juice and sweetener on hand. But it doesn’t hurt to have pinot noir and whole cloves, too.

Try ’em!

Strawberry Yogurt Freeze (You can use any food processor or powerful blender for this. Try with cultured soy yogurt and let me know how it comes out!)

Chocolate Sorbet and Mixed Berry Soy “Cream”

Granita of Pinot Noir with Berries

Advertisements

Splenda Nation

To avoid dependence on fossil fuels, we drill more. Or we grow bio fuels and buy away our guilt with carbon offsets. To get ourselves off sugar, we create miraculous substances like NutraSweet and Splenda. The same goes for fat, the frantic reworking of which gave us such joys as transfats and CoolWhip.

But where is all this innovation getting us? If you ask me, I’ll tell you exactly where: adrift in polluted waters, with the engine out of fuel and all of us too sick and fat to swim to shore.

My solution? So glad you asked that, too!

I say take a step back (as many are doing) rather than rushing forward. All of the new-fangled solutions aren’t getting us off oil or making the world a more peaceful place. Many folks have actually started to listen to rather dismiss the flower-hugging messages: drive more fuel-efficient cars, walk, bike, and take public transport, and live close to work to begin with! Continue reading

Raw recipes

I’m back! Hope you liked the guest post from Alynn. I met her last week at a raw foods dinner she put on. I’d experienced raw offerings at places like Java Green, Everlasting Life Cafe, and A Quest for Fresh, but this was more than marinated mushrooms and chopped kale. We had sushi rolls, avocado dip, fruit salad, “plum” pudding, eggplant “manicotti,” brazil nut crust pizza with a zingy sundried tomato sauce, and several creamy coconut confections for dessert.

I’m sure Alynn wouldn’t want to reveal all her secrets (and, to be honest, it would take me quite a while just to type the things I learned during the course of that afternoon), but I thought I’d pass on a few teaspoons of raw info and recipes from the pro.

First, a few things I learned about raw eating:

  • Raw cuisine is made with fruits, vegetables, nuts, and seeds that are eaten fresh or dehydrated at temperatures of no more than about 110 F. According to Alynn’s café’s website, it is “uncooked, live, unprocessed, being in or nearly the natural state, energetic, with natural enzymes, vitamins and amino acids.”
  • Raw sushi rolls can be made with chopped cauliflower instead of rice! Make like regular sushi rolls using strips of veggies and a schmear of mashed avocado dip (avocado, apple cider vinegar, salt), and roll up with nori.
  • For a tasty “plum” pudding, puree fresh figs, a tad grated fresh ginger, and lemon juice.
  • Make a refreshing summer drink with water and any herb (mint, rosemary, lavender, lemon balm, etc.) by combining and letting it sit outside for a day and a night. The sun will make it into tea, and the night will cool it off (plus the moon will imbue it with lunar energy, Alynn explained–a nice bonus!) Drink the next day.

(Recipes next…) Continue reading

Guest Post: Bio of a raw foods chef

Squatting down, hands clasped together, radiant blue eyes wide open and looking up, beaming a smile. Hair flowing down my back, feeling the breeze, sensing the vibrations of Mother Earth, and embracing life is me, myself, and I! I go by the name of Alynn Davis and I live by my personal motto ~ “Life is GRAND, so LIVE it!”

Life is grand. Life is beautiful. You are given a life to live in this lifetime. What more can you ask for? Who cares if you have blue, hazel, or brown eyes? Who cares if you’re tall or short? Who cares if you’re big or small? What really matters is how you’re living your life. Love life and embrace it! Take it to heart and grow! Blossom! Show your beauty! Be the person that you are! My eyes, my mind, my emotions, my SOUL had been shifting to a new level since I became 100% raw in October of 2003. The darkness has drifted away, the cloudiness, the negative forces of energy faded into space. Living Raw is not just about eating raw foods. It is about living your life in an optimal way. It is about choices, it is about becoming something you never thought you would become. Continue reading

What we ate – Day 2

Here’s the food log for today, June 12. Catch Day 1 here or our profiles here if you missed ’em.

Sherita

Breakfast
Oat groats with rice milk bananas and raisins
Sprouted wheat toast with coconut oil, which is better than butter.

Lunch
Thai Kitchen’s pad Thai noodles. I buy these because they’re vegan and I just add hot water. I don’t microwave so it’s great for me.

Dinner
Marinated spinach. This is a raw dish. The marinade is Bragg’s liquid aminos, ginger, sesame oil, and garlic. I blend this and pour it over the spinach and put it in the fridge overnight. Delicious!

Rhea

Breakfast
Yogurt with service berries (from a neighborhood tree – very local!)
½ bagel with strawberry cream cheese
Coffee with cream and sugar

Lunch
Pizza (1 slice cheese, 1 slice just veggies)
Side o’ mashed potatoes

Snack
Mixed nuts and dried apples

Caramel kettle corn

Dinner
Salad (community garden & Clagett Farm greens, bell peppers, sauerkraut, ground flax seeds, tahini dressing*)
Sprouted grain tortillas
Virgin Mary (tomato juice, horseradish, hot sauce, spices)

*For this tahini dressing, I mixed Annie’s Goddess Dressing—which is too vinegary for me–with tahini, lemon juice, tamari, and water. If you make your own from scratch, throw in some minced garlic and parsley.

Kobayashi

Breakfast
6 Morningstar vegetarian sausage links, seasoned.
1 cup of blueberries & raspberries
16 oz. protein shake w/ mango, pineapple, and orange juice
2 slices of 12 grain bread

Lunch
1 veggie burger
1 avocado
1 serving of lebanese salad
2 slices of oat wheat bread

Late Afternoon Snack
2 banana
1 packet of almond, cashew, and raisin mix
1 bottle of acai & pomegranate juice.

Dinner
2 cups boiled edamame
1 servings of chickpeas and bulgur wheat salad
1 serving of quinoa, raisins, veggie salad
2 mangoes

What we ate-Day 1

Here’s what we ate today, June 11! If you missed our profiles, check them out.

Sherita

Breakfast
Oat groat with rice milk bananas and raisins
Sprouted wheat bread with coconut oil
(I soak the steel cut oat groats overnight in filtered water. I drain them and add the rice milk and fruit)

Lunch
Roasted garlic hummus
Pesto and sundried tomato pita chips

Snack
Fresh carrot and apple juice
Veggie potato chips
(I try to juice at least 4 times a week. I like carrot as my base and I’ll add different veggies such as spinach and cabbage)

“Dinner”
Rice dream with a vegan brownie
(I was not really hungry for dinner so I just ate the “ice cream”)

Rhea

Breakfast/AM snacks
Honey Bunches of Oats with soy milk
Cornmeal pancake with mulberries and chocolate chips
Coffee (office coffee perhaps redeemed by the organic milk and raw sugar)
Leftover part of a vegan cookie (can’t let such a thing go to waste!)

Lunch
Brown rice with sautéed collard greens, onions, garlic, sauerkraut and a hardboiled egg
Cherry Pie Larabar
Mixed nuts

Water

Dinner
(at Sticky Rice on H Street)
G.I. Jane roll (cucumber, cream cheese, nori, and rice rolled in crushed wasabi peas)
Jolly Green Wontons (filled with edamame and wasabi)
Tater tots with creamy dipping sauce
Veggie spring roll with peanut sauce
A couple glasses of shiraz

Water
Kumbucha

Kobayashi

 

 

 

Breakfast

6 Morningstar vegetarian sausage links, seasoned.
1 cup of blueberries
16oz of protein shake w/ mango, pineapple, and orange juice
2 slices of 12 grain bread

Lunch

1 serving of baba-ghanoush
1 cup of vegetarian chili
1 Falafel wrap w/ hummus

 

Late Afternoon Snack
2 banana
1 packet of trail mix nuts & cranberries

Dinner
2 cups of lentil salad w/ cranberries
1 serving of grape tomato and soy mozarella cheese caprese salad
2 mangoes

The Nude Pantry Project – DMV Edition

Three vegetarians… two days… one place to see it all.
I warned you, and now the Nude Pantry Project is here! Today and tomorrow, myself and two other veggies from DC, Maryland, and Virginia will tell you every little thing we eat. Our food logs will be posted here tomorrow and the next day.

Please tune in to comment, ask for recipes, inquire about where we find this or that ingredient, or tell us what you really think of our eating habits. Think of the NP2 as American Idol meets America’s Test Kitchen.

Before I start posting the logs, I’ll give you a chance to get to know us.

Sherita

Interpreting service program support specialist, realtor, and event planner/coordinator living in Maryland

I am not sure if I am truly classified as a vegan. Although I do not consume nor use on my body nor my home, any animal products, I do wear leather and fur. Some say I’m not a true vegan, but I believe the term best describes me.

As a teenager I decided that I didn’t want to eat meat such as beef and pork. However, it wasn’t until three years ago that I decided to stop eating poultry, fish and dairy. The decision came because I was searching for an alternative to traditional medicine for my niece who became very ill. I attended my first workshop on vegetarianism, veganism and holistic medicine and knew immediately that I would change my life. I began my vegan life that day and haven’t regretted it.

I eat mock meats such as seitan, tempeh and textured vegetable protein. I also eat raw foods mostly from recipes by Alissa Cohen. Juices and smoothies are part of my daily meals. So I have a large variety of meals and even enjoy vegan desserts.

More about me: I am a realtor with Long & Foster specializing in first time home buyers assistance. Most of my work is in Maryland and I do presentations in sign language for Deaf consumers on various real estate topics. I also am an event planner/coordinator. I’m currently working on a project with a client in the Caribbean to plan a launch party for a new lounge grand opening. I am living in Maryland and although my family is in Georgia we are very close and I speak with someone everyday.

Rhea

Public relations writer, graduate student, and food blogger living in Washington, DC

After 14 years of eating everything from brown rice to blood sausage, I went vegetarian. A year or two later, I became vegan. A semester of study abroad in West Africa led me to widen my food options to include eggs, dairy, and the occasional bit of fish or chicken stock as a way to invite a bigger range of culinary adventures. I stay strictly lacto-ovo vegetarian at home, and let things slide now and then when I smell an adventure. This system has come in handy during subsequent trips to the West Indies, East Africa, Mexico, and China. Even after my years of veganism ended, though, I avoided buying leather and silk and kept my dairy consumption down.

I now define my diet by what I DO consume, namely whole grains, seasonal and local produce, a few more exotic staples like coconut milk and seaweed, raw and/or organic dairy, and the occasional junk food.

A little more about me: For about four years, I had a personal chef service called Braisin’ Greens. It’s now on hold while I’m in grad school. I’ve written the blog you’re reading now (and taken some of the ravishing photos you see) since 2007 and have also written food-related posts for The Jew and the Carrot, EcoDeaf, and trEYE Stories. I like running, biking, gardening, swimming, going to the beach, and watching addictive TV series.

Kobayashi

Strategy consultant for a private consultancy living in Fairfax, Va.,

Kobayashi* was born into a family with a long tradition in vegetarianism. At the tender age of twelve, his parents told him they’d be supportive if he chose to give up vegetarianism.

Despite his proclivity to iconoclasm and irreverent curiosity he decided to remain one after much consideration for ethical, environmental, and nutritional reasons. La Commensal in Toronto is his favorite vegetarian restaurant on earth and he says he enjoys the simple things most – fruit and nuts. He is trying to cook up a recipe using synsepalum dulcificum berries.

More about Kobayashi: He studies the Filipino martial arts Kali, Escrima, and Arnis, although he’s taking a break from it for now. He also enjoys shooting skeet, reading non-fiction, and attending film festivals.

*Not his real name, but one with a damn fine food connection.

What’s up with those tomatoes?

You’ve probably heard the news by now: tomatoes are making people sick. Over 160 cases of salmonella poisoning in 14 states may be linked to contaminated ‘maters. Cherry and grape tomatoes and the ones on the vine are likely safe, and of course the ones from your farmers’ market or greenhouse are, too. But beware the others (I’m guessing this means the convenient mid-sized Romas and those beefsteak slicing tomatoes for your weekend barbecue), lest you join the queasy group or the two dozen people who’ve been hospitalized.

From what I’m hearing and reading, the problem came from the handling of these tomatoes. Salmonella comes from people who have eaten food contaminated with animal feces (ick, I know) or who came in contact with the feces and still have traces on their hands. Even thorough washing may not take care of the problem, as the bacteria are pretty tenacious and could have gotten into the tomato flesh. Continue reading

Arranged Marriage?

rhubarb
The marriage of rhubarb and strawberries is known and accepted throughout the land. The stalk and the berry reign side by side through May and June, and no one thinks twice about it.

But might something be wrong?

Sure, the pudgy, red-faced Strawberry can get involved with his pick of shortcakes, jams, or pies, and have private get-aways with any number of air-headed whipped toppings. But the rhubarb is practically banned from the table without her seedy chaperone. Did anyone ask the blushing, green stalk if this is what she wants? Might she harbor a secret wish to roam free?

I urge you: give your rhubarb a choice this year. Offer up the chance for her own private pie, or a cozy crisp. Start with this compote.

Please — just try it. Do it for the the rhubarb, and green young things everywhere.

(recipe after the jump)

Continue reading