Wednesday, October 30, 2013

sunflower milk yogurt

We make sunflower milk yogurt for our son. We soak 1 cup of shelled sunflower seeds overnight. In the morning we rinse them and place them into high speed blender  with 4 cups of filtered water and 4 dates (we use our blendtec on the whole juice cycle). This will make over a quart of milk. We pour the excess of one quart into a nut milk bag for milk to add to our morning sprouted granola. To the 32 ounces left in the blender we add probiotic powder (1 serving) and 2 tablespoons of raw honey. We blend until it is well blended (we use another whole juice cycle). We pour it into our yogurt maker and wait 10 hours. Leaving the hulls in the milk assists with making the yogurt thicker. We have added non-flavored gelatin or xanthan gum if we need it real thick for a recipe.

I just found this link for making coconut yogurt

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Food that Kills by Dr Michael Klaper

We try to live by a nutrient dense diet to improve our overall well-being.
A wonderful way to begin is through Dr. Joel Fuhrman methods. His website is
This video from Dr. Klaper confirmed why one should reduce one's intake of animal products, including dairy, poultry, and fish.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

diabetes links

There is so much out there to cure diabetes with dietary changes. I found this one from Mother Earth Living , the most interesting due to the studies it references and the explanations it gives such as "A plant-based diet helps prevent diabetes in three ways: First, compared with the typical American diet, it’s much lower in fat, so it helps control weight. Second, it’s high in fiber, which helps control blood sugar. And third, plant foods are rich in antioxidant nutrients, which improve the body’s ability to use insulin."

There is a free course on diabetes being offered at starting October 28, 2013.

Here are several other links

This Nut May Prevent Diabetes & Heart Disease

earth clinic

a documentary by Dr. Cousens

This article is interesting on many levels, the main one again a reminder that fat effects insulin as does fructose.

We really  like and respect Dr Fuhrman's position on diet and health. Here is his link for those with diabetes

toxic food additives

This article came out this week in Mother Earth Living, . It is about toxic food additives.
The top five are
artificial sweeteners,
chemical preservatives,
unnatural flavor enhancers,
artificial colors,
and chemical stabilizers.
So many things are coming out now but have been known by many for quite some time.

Seventeen years ago our pediatrician asked us to look into the Feingold diet, . In the Feingold community, even 17 years ago this was old news.
While looking at its website, i was appalled that so many of our chemical food additives are produced from petroleum waste products or byproducts. We have tried our best for the last 17 years to avoid adding any extra petroleum to our bodies.
These chemical food additives include
sweeteners (artificial and high fructose corn syrup),
artificial preservatives,
artificial enhancers,
artificial colors,
and artificial stabilizers .
Does the list look familiar?

We are thankful that this is finally becoming common knowledge.

Monday, October 21, 2013

Raw Mushroom Nut Loaf

We had raw mushroom nut loaf for dinner tonight with roasted butternut squash, carrots, onions, with garlic, and lightly steamed green beans. The No Cream of Mushroom Soup was used as a gravy.
Oh my goodness was this delicious.  We have made other raw and/or vegan "meat loaf" recipes, but this is superior to the others.
Our son had seconds on the mushroom nut loaf. What a blessing that the recipe made 6 slices, so we have leftovers for another day.
The recipe for the mushroom nut loaf is from
Raw Vegan Holiday Mushroom Loaf

Step 1. Prep before hand:
1 c ground/smashed Macadamia nuts
I chose to grind my nuts in a food processor --- To smash your Mac nuts: place nuts in zip-lock baggy and pound with a flat heavy object.
Step 2. Seasoning your Mac nuts:
1/2 tsp dried Thyme
1/4 tsp dried/ground Rosemary
1/2 tsp dried Dillweed
1 tsp Onion powder
1/2 tsp Lemon Pepper
1 tsp dried Parsley
Sea Salt to taste
Add the above ingredients to your ground/smashed Macadamia nuts - proceed to grind/smash again. Remove the contents of your Whitlock baggy, placing them in a mixing bowl and setting them aside. 
Step 3. Mushrooms!
2 dozen (24) Crimini Mushrooms - minced very very well (you can either do this by hand, or in a food processor). If you are doing this by hand then you can mince and mash with the flat side of your chopping knife to get a very thorough and fine mince.
2 or 3 Green Onions (scallions) minced very well
Add your Mushrooms and Onions to the bowl containing your seasoned Macadamia nuts. Mix/Mash well )to do this you can use a hand masher or you can pulse with your food processor).
To your mixing bowl add: 
1 Tbsp White Mustard //or// 1 tsp Lemon Juice
1 tsp Minced Garlic //or// Garlic Granules (optional)
1 Tbsp Nutritional Yeast
1/4 c Water (for a Smokey flavor use Lapsag Souchong Tea Water)
Step 4. Final Step! Making your Mushroom Loaf //or// Burgers!
I fist shaped these into little Burgers (using a Biscuit cutter), at about 1/2" thick. 
Dehydrating Method: Dehydrate Burgers 5 to 6 hours, flipping half way though.

The recipe for the No Cream of Mushroom soup is

Sunday, October 20, 2013

Zuppa Toscana

 Thanks Art for the challenge!!!
Zuppa Toscana (better than Olive Garden!) From facebook post from Art Mealer

1 lb. Italian sausages (use spicy to get that signature Olive Garden flavor)
4-6 russet potatoes, chopped
1 onion, chopped
1/4 c. REAL bacon pieces (optional)
2 Tbsp minced garlic (about 3-4 cloves)
32 oz. chicken broth
1 c. kale or Swiss chard, chopped
1 c. heavy whipping cream
2 Tbsp flour

1. Brown sausage links in a sauté pan.
2. Cut links in half lengthwise, then cut slices.
3. Place sausage, chicken broth, garlic, potatoes and onion in slow cooker. Add just enough water to cover the vegetables and meat.
4. Cook on high 3-4 hours (low 5-6 hours) until potatoes are soft.

30 minutes before serving:
5. Mix flour into cream removing lumps.
6. Add cream and kale to the crock pot, stir.
7. Cook on high 30 minutes or until broth thickens slightly.
8. Add salt, pepper, and cayenne to taste.

Zuppa Toscana VEGAN STYLE

10 oz baby Portabella mushrooms
4-6 russet potatoes, chopped
1 onion, chopped
2 Tbsp minced garlic (about 3-4 cloves)
32 oz. Vegetable broth
1 c. Swiss chard, chopped
1 c. creamed cauliflower
1 ½ teaspoon onion powder
1 ½ teaspoon garlic powder
1 ½ teaspoon dried sage
1 ½ teaspoon ground fennel seeds
1 teaspoon parsley
½ teaspoon salt

¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1. slice the mushrooms
2. Place mushrooms, vegetable broth, garlic, potatoes, spices, and onion in slow cooker. Add just enough water to cover the vegetables and meat.
3. Cook on high 3-4 hours (low 5-6 hours) until potatoes are soft.

30 minutes before serving:
4. Add creamed cauliflower and kale to the crock pot, stir.
5. Cook on high 30 minutes or until broth thickens slightly.
6. Add salt, pepper, and cayenne to taste.

Raw Chocolate Chip Cookies

chocolate chip
The recipe used is

  • 1 cup dried almond pulp flour
  • ¼ cup coconut oil, softened (we used cacao butter)
  • ¼ cup pure maple syrup
  • 6 tablespoons raw almond butter
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • ¼ teaspoon fine sea salt
  • dark chocolate chips, as needed

We made almond milk by soaking raw almonds  for 6-8 hours, draining them, rinsing and draining again, and processing through the Blendtec (a highspeed blender) with 4 cups of water and 4 dates. We drained the milk through a nut milk bag (thank you Darlene for the nut milk bag). The pulp is what is left in the bag. It was dehydrated at 105 becoming the almond pulp flour. The family is pretty happy to be able to use the leftovers for COOKIES instead of chicken feed!!! For those who aren't coconut fans, one can use Spectrum Shortening. It isn't raw, but the cookies still work well.
We make our own almond butter (2 cups of almonds, 1/2 tsp celtic sea salt, and 2 TBS Dupree Bees Honey following this recipe:
We dehydrated them because we like the chocolate chips to be slightly melted, and the outside of the cookie to be crisp.

Saturday, October 19, 2013

Lasagna soup

Lasagna soup is one of my husband's favorite soup. For him we made it following the directions at the following link:
To convert this to a vegan, pasta-free soup, we used 1/2 a spaghetti squash and 2 cups of spinach leaves to replace the sausage. We did add Daiya cheese to the soup when serving.

Friday, October 18, 2013

10 things that one can do to be happier

So many people want to be happier, less anxious, less stressed... Here is an article giving you 10 ways to achieve just that.
Here are the 10 highlights.
1. Exercise more – 7 minutes might be enough 
2. Sleep more – you'll be less sensitive to negative emotions 
3. Move closer to work – a short commute is worth more than a big house 
4. Spend time with friends and family – don't regret it on your deathbed 
5. Go outside – happiness is maximized at 13.9°C 
6. Help others – 100 hours a year is the magical number 
7. Practice smiling – it can alleviate pain 
8. Plan a trip – but don't take one 
9. Meditate – rewire your brain for happiness 
10. Practice gratitude – increase both happiness and life satisfaction 

Read more at: Follow us on Facebook:

Sacred Science

I watched the documentary Sacred Science this morning. The link is
It was free to watch through midnight October 18, 2013 at

It was intriguing that eating raw foods, drinking herbal teas, and talking (and being listened to) improved their quality of life.
It also interesting that anti-fungal herbs were used on many of the patients and those with cancer were not allowed to eat "sugars" not even fruit. This way of thinking is very similar to Dr. Simoncini's. His link is
We have been reading the book Kitchen Table Wisdom by Rachel Remen. She discusses at length the importance of listening to peoples stories is part of one's healing. She also believes that healing one's heart heals one's mind, soul, and body. Two different continents and such similar observations.

"Vicks" vapor shower pucks

We made these in mini muffin tins. This recipe made 12 pucks
We combine 1 cup of baking soda and 1/3 cup of water. We filled 12 mini muffin cups.
It was baked for 20 minutes at 350.  
After the "puck" is cool THEN add a few drops of each essential oils (eucalyptus, rosemary, peppermint, and lavender).

This recipe was found at

We added peppermint essential oil, it has such healing properties.

Thursday, October 17, 2013

A not so raw day's menu and recipes

We raise our own pastured chickens for the purpose of eggs. Our son eats an egg a couple of times a week. We used 2 cups of lightly sauteed  broccoli, spinach, onions, and mushrooms, eggplant bacon (using Ani' Essential Raw Food recipe) and Daiya cheese in the egg. He also had a slice of UDI's breaded toasted with Daiya cream cheese, and all fruit jam. He also had an organic sliced apple.

For lunch we had our usual soup and salad for lunch. Today we made a curried carrot salad to place our lettuce as our dressing: The link for the curry carrot salad is . We used green beans instead of snow peas. The curry spice complimented the sweetness of the pineapple and the raisins.

broccoli soup has a dollop of Daiya cream cheese. The recipe is from

We had Jambalaya for dinner. 
The vegan version is from
We used split red lentils and doubled the amount of vegetables used. We did not use any oil and replaced the rice with quinoa.

My husband eats meat and loves spicier food. With his version we also doubled the vegetable portions, and did not use any oil. For the extra spice a chopped cayenne, the seeds were also added. Here is the recipe

For snacks we have made Paleo ice cream sandwiches stored in the freezer. To make the "ice cream", we combined 4 cans of whole fat coconut milk, 1 cup of chopped dates and 1 quart of strawberries. The ingredients are processed in a food processor and then made into ice cream using an ice cream maker.
The cake is from We baked it in jelly rolls pans.
We froze the layers of cake and ice cream. My sister assembled them, then sliced them into sandwiches.
He also had raw bars.

Monday, October 14, 2013

thoughts on purchasing local and self sustainability

I love the idea of purchasing as much local food as one can and we do purchase quite a bit of local produce and meat. I also love sustainable living, simplifying our lives, we have a vegetable and herb garden, a few fruit trees, and chickens for their eggs. Our neighbors have bees, a vegetable and herb garden, and fruit trees. I love the barter system, but how does this effect the economy?

My husband and I were talking about it the other day. If the majority of people do as we have been doing, what happens to the workers in the food factories? What about the ranchers who are raising poultry and other feedlot animal? What about the farmers raising the corn and soybeans to feed these animals?
Let's take this even a step further. If certain foods may cause harm, such as GMO's, wheat, confined  animals, sugar, refined and processed foods, when people change to a healthier diet what happens to the economy? The pharmaceutical companies? The pharmacies on every corner? The middle aisles in the grocery stores that are also on every corner? The doctors and hospitals? Even if 20% of the people transition to this lifestyle, what effect will this have on the economy? Will this then go down the line to the stores, construction, banks?

Any thoughts?

Here is an article on farming transitions, but it doesn't mention the economic implications of sustainable gardening and purchasing local goods.

Monday's menu

This is our Monday's Menu this week.

Breakfast:  I sprout the buckwheat for 2 days in the summer and 3 in the winter. Our neighbors have bees, so we use Dupree's Bees Honey instead of maple syrup. These recipes are where i begin, but i use whatever i have in the house combining these recipes.The two links are and
We make sunflower milk (soaked sunflowers, dates, and water) using our Blendtec to pour over the granola.

Lunch: We have soup and salad most days for lunch. Today we had The black Bean and Mango salad from Dr. Fuhrman. Here is a link for it We omitted the corn due to gastro issues with corn and added a few more frozen mango pieces to achieve the desired sweetness.

We also had soup and onion bread. The soup is from . We make a large batch and freeze it in individual servings. We do the same for the onion bread. The link is
Our son added hummus to his onion bread.

Dinner: We made raw fajitas from I made the raw cheese but not the sour cream from this recipe. For the sour cream I use a recipe from Ani's Essential Raw Book.
For my husband's, we added sliced chicken to the marinade and omitted the mushrooms.

For snacks our son ate a berry/spinach smoothie for his mid-morning snack. His afternoon snack was a mango/avocado "yogurt" and several peppermint raw bars for his evening snack.

Friday, October 11, 2013

chocolate caramel desserts/candies

I love caramel, but dairy is not my friend. Finding "sweets" with caramel is such a treat. I am not going to calculate the nutritional information. Although these treats are better for you (higher fiber, higher protein, lower carbohydrates...), they are still desserts and should be eaten in moderation.

Paleo Caramel Brownies
Next time i make these, i will double the brownie recipe because there was too much caramel and chocolate ganache. However, they did taste amazing!!! They freeze well.

Goo Goo Clusters
For the Goo Goo Clusters i needed to double the chocolate to completely cover the cluster, layered with coconut nougat, caramel, and a walnut half. I also combined the recipes of the caramel of the Goo Goo Clusters and the Raw Snicker Bars, to save time with blending and clean-up. The caramel was delicious.

"Raw Snickers Bars"

For these "Raw Snickers Bars" i simplified the making of the nougat pressing the nougat on parchment paper in a square pan and cut the nougat into bars to freeze.
These were too sweet for me. Next time i plan to reduce maple syrup by half for the chocolate.

Almond Clusters

The Almond Clusters were an unexpected treat! They are from the leftover chocolate from the "Raw Snickers Bars" with almond in mini cupcake cups.

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Artichoke Pesto Zucchini Bites

These are amazing and so easy to make. These are "rawish".  We used the dehydrator to soften the sliced zucchini instead of the grill. The artichokes are from our garden. To freeze them, we lightly blanched them before freezing. To keep it vegan we did not use any cheese, and the taste is still fantastic. We also reduced the oil content by half and the remaining liquid needed was water.

Artichoke Pesto Zucchini Bites

  • 2 lbs zucchini (about 2-3 large zucchini)
  • 9 oz package frozen artichoke hearts, thawed and squeezed of excess water (from our garden)
  • zest of 1 lemon
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 2 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
  • the leaves of half a bunch of parsley (about a cup)
  • 1/4 cup walnuts
  • pinch of salt and pepper
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil (1/8 cup oil and 1/8 cup water)
  • 1 oz parmigiano reggiano, grated (about 1/2 cup) (we omitted this)

Cut the stem off the zucchinis, then use a mandolin to slice them into long thin ribbons. They should be about 1/8 inch thick, if they're too thin they won't stand up on the own, but if they're too thick, they won't be flexible enough to roll. Give each one a little sprinkle on both sides with salt and pepper.

Heat the grill to high, and do a quick sear of the zucchini. Since they are really thin, they should only be on the grill for about 30-60 seconds, just enough to take the raw edge off and give them some pretty little grill marks. Remove the grilled zucchini ribbons to a plate.

In a food processor, throw in the artichoke hearts, lemon zest, lemon juice, garlic, parsley, walnuts, and a big pinch of salt and pepper. Let the food processor run for a good 20 seconds, until everything is chopped up, and be sure to stop and scrape down the sides from time to time. With the food processor running, stream in the olive oil. Scrape the pesto out into a bowl, and stir in the grated Parmesan. Taste it to check for proper seasoning.

Place a spoonful of artichoke pesto into each zucchini ribbon, and roll it up into a little roll. The artichoke pesto is sticky so it should stick together well. Serve and enjoy!

Monday, October 7, 2013

a few of our favorite soup recipes

Soups are so easy to freeze. We make a couple of them each weekend and then freeze them in individual servings, so we are able to select one for an easy lunch of soup and salad. The recipe calculator i use does not have an option for low sodium vegetable broth, so the sodium will be higher than it actually is.
These are four of our favorites - No Cream of Mushroom, Vegetarian Soup, Butternut Squash Soup, and Cream of Broccoli. All four are vegan and grain free.

The No Cream of Mushroom soup serves 4. The roasted mushrooms and cauliflower make such a difference in the flavor of this soup. We have made other vegan cream of mushroom soups and this is our favorite.
  Total Fat7.6 g
     Saturated Fat1.1 g
     Polyunsaturated Fat1.2 g
     Monounsaturated Fat5.0 g
  Cholesterol0.0 mg
  Sodium991.0 mg
  Potassium1,013.4 mg
  Total Carbohydrate20.1 g
     Dietary Fiber5.9 g
     Sugars5.1 g
  Protein6.1 g

This vegetable soup recipe is so tasty. The spaghetti squash adds the texture of noodles.
Here is the nutritional information serving 8 2-cup servings.
  Total Fat2.3 g
     Saturated Fat0.3 g
     Polyunsaturated Fat0.5 g
     Monounsaturated Fat1.3 g
  Cholesterol0.0 mg
  Sodium1,250.8 mg
  Potassium667.3 mg
  Total Carbohydrate20.1 g
     Dietary Fiber2.2 g
     Sugars4.5 g
  Protein2.8 g

This butternut squash soup recipe is amazing. It is so creamy. We have added garlic and doubled the sage for more flavor.

Here is the nutritional information if serving 8 from this one recipe
  Total Fat12.1 g
     Saturated Fat2.0 g
     Polyunsaturated Fat0.1 g
     Monounsaturated Fat0.0 g
  Cholesterol0.0 mg
  Sodium278.6 mg
  Potassium245.4 mg
  Total Carbohydrate18.2 g
     Dietary Fiber3.4 g
     Sugars2.8 g
  Protein5.9 g

This cream of broccoli soup recipe is a very creamy soup. It makes 4 2-cup servings.
  Total Fat27.8 g
     Saturated Fat24.0 g
     Polyunsaturated Fat0.5 g
     Monounsaturated Fat0.5 g
  Cholesterol0.0 mg
  Sodium806.3 mg
  Potassium642.3 mg
  Total Carbohydrate29.5 g
     Dietary Fiber6.4 g
     Sugars6.2 g
  Protein5.7 g