Tuesday, June 23, 2015

The Benefits of Fiber

The typical American eats 12 grams of fiber per day. The daily recommendation is between 25-35 grams. To truly improve one's health one fiber intake should be over 50 grams per day. Dr Lustig recommends closer to 100 grams. That amount is even difficult for us, but 75 grams is very doable. One shouldn't increase one's fiber more than 5 grams per day to avoid blockages, while increasing one's water consumption.

We have found that keeping our fiber over 50 grams per day has promoted wonderful health benefits, including lower our cholesterol and our fasting glucose, while improving our skin and digestive health. Fiber also makes us feel fuller longer.

There are two types of fiber, soluble and insoluble, we need both.

Soluble fiber is the type that dissolves in water to form a gel-like substance. It can lower cholesterol and glucose levels. Soluble fiber is found in legumes, oats, fruits and vegetables.
Insoluble fiber promotes healthy bowel movements and digestive health. It is found in whole grains, nuts, legumes, and vegetables.

Most plants contain both types of fibers. Remember animal products contain NO fiber, while processed foods contain very little.

This is a wonderful Fiber chart

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Weed Be Gone/Round-up alternative

This recipe to get rid of weeds is all over the internet, we just like to have it handy which is why it is here.

1 gallon white vinegar
2 cups epsom salts
1/4 cup Dawn (blue)

Combine the ingredients in a large container. Mix well. Add to spray bottle and use liberally. It needs to be reapplied often and it only kills what was directly sprayed.

homemade fly spray

With the heat the flies haven't been too bad but i do know they get bad around our chicken run and coop. This recipe for homemade fly spray is from communitychickens.com. We have been using it around other areas where flies seem to be an issue.

What you will need:
  • 1 Spray Bottle (Mine is 12 ounces)
  • 2/3 Cup of White Vinegar
  • 1 3/4 Cup of Water
  • 10 Drops of Tea Tree Essential Oil (Melaleuca)
  • 10 Drops of Lavender Essential Oil
Combine the water and vinegar in a spray bottle. Next, add the essential oils into the mixture. Shake well and spray on the mist setting. Be sure to shake well before each use.

Sunday, June 14, 2015

Pesto Bake

We saw this recipe for a pesto bake is from Dr Mercola. The amount of oil is way too much for us, so we altered it to fit our needs and added mushrooms and a little more garlic. Our thoughts are if we are going to consume fat, it might as well have the other macro-nutrients, plus a few micro-nutrients .

1 eggplant, sliced into chunks
2 pounds of zucchini, diced
2 red pepper, diced
12 oz mushrooms, sliced
2 medium onions

2 14.5 oz cans organic diced tomatoes
4 cloves of garlic, minced
salt and pepper to taste

Pesto ingredients:
2 cups fresh basil
1/2 cup pinenuts (walnuts are another option)
2 cloves of garlic
1/4 cup olive oil
Place all in the food processor and blend until smooth.

Water saute the vegetables and garlic. When the desired consistency pour into a large baking dish. We divided into 4 dishes, so we can freeze 3 of them.
Pour tomatoes over the vegetables.
Top with the 1/2 cup of pesto.
Bake at 350 for 45 minutes.

Nutritional information 16 servings:
calories: 105.8
fat: 6.8 g
carbs: 10.7 g
fiber: 4.0 g
protein: 3.3 g

Saturday, June 13, 2015

Raw Honey Ginger Carrots

Our carrot harvest is abundant this year. We have about 200 carrots to consume, store, and give away within a month.
This is an old favorite that we have cooked in the past, today we made it raw

10 cups carrots, coins or shredded

4 TBS honey
1 TBS minced ginger
2 TBS olive oil
1 tsp sesame oil

Whisk dressing and pour over carrots. Mix well with carrots.

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Tamales from Living Light Institute

We love mex-tex food. We used this recipe using romaine leaves instead of using corn husks.


Recipe Type: Entree
Cuisine: Raw Vegan
Serves: 12 small tamales
  • 12 Corn Husks
  • Corn Masa
  • 3 cups corn from the cob, or frozen
  • 1½ cups cashews or blanched almonds, soaked
  • 3 tablespoons onion powder
  • 1½ teaspoons Himalayan crystal salt
  • 3 tablespoons lemon juice
  • Fresh ground black pepper
  • 1 cup ground white almond flour (made from blanched almonds)
  • ¼ cup mesquite powder, we used 2TBS lucuma powder

  • Tamale Filling
  • ¾ cup finely diced zucchini
  • ⅜ cup ground macadamia nuts
  • 3 tablespoons finely diced dried porcini or crimini mushrooms
  • 3 tablespoons finely minced red onion
  • 2 tablespoons Mexican chili powder
  • 1½ tablespoons finely minced celery
  • 1½ tablespoons dried mango, soaked and minced
  • 2 teaspoons nutritional yeast
  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice
  • ½ teaspoon Himalayan crystal salt
  • ½ teaspoon garlic, minced
  • ⅛ teaspoon cayenne
  1. If using dried corn husks, soak the husks in warm water and set aside to soften.
  2. Blend the corn and cashews with the seasonings in a food processor until smooth.
  3. Add the almond flour and mesquite powder and combine well.
  4. Using a ½-cup measure, create small oblong corn masa cakes, about ¼-inch deep, on a non-stick dehydrator sheet. Place them in a dehydrator set at 135 degrees for 1 hour. (This short amount of time will not harm the enzymes or nutrients in the food.) Turn the cakes over, reduce the temperature to 115 and continue dehydrating for another 30 minutes.
  5. Combine ingredients for the filling and mix well.
  6. To assemble the tamales, remove the corn masa cakes from the dehydrator and create a small indentation in the center. Place 1½ tablespoons of the filling into the indentation and fold some of the corn cake mixture from each side to (nearly) cover the filling. Place the tamales back in the dehydrator set at 115 degrees F for 30 minutes.
  7. To serve the tamales, drain and towel dry the optional corn husks. Place the tamales in the center of a corn husk.
  8. Serve the tamales warm, with Mole Sauce over the top.

Zoom Burgers from Living Light Institute

We received this recipe over the weekend Zoom Burgers . We are always looking for burger replacement especially during the "grill" months. To make this a "meatloaf" double the recipe, make larger "mini-loaves" instead of patties, start the dehydration at 125 for 2 hours and then reduce the temperature to 105 and continue to follow the dehydration directions.
We had them when the hubby had burgers, served with sweet potato fries on half an Udi's bun and a salad.

Recipe Type: Main Entree
Cuisine: Raw Vegan
Serves: 3-4 small burgers
  • ¾ cup walnuts, soaked and dehydrated
  • 1 cup shredded zucchini
  • 1 tablespoon dark miso (we used chickpea miso because it is gluten free)
  • 1 tablespoon purified water
  • ¾ cup minced mushrooms
  • ⅓ cup minced celery
  • ¼ cup minced red onion
  • 2 tablespoons ground flaxseeds
  • 1½ tablespoons minced fresh parsley
  • 1 tablespoon nutritional yeast flakes
  • 1½ teaspoons minced fresh sage
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 clove garlic, crushed
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly ground white pepper
  1. Place ½ cup of the walnuts in a food processor fitted with the S blade and grind them into a powder. Add the zucchini and pulse to mix. (Do not overprocess; the mixture should have a little texture.) Transfer to a large bowl.
  2. Mince the remaining walnuts by hand or coarsely grind them by pulsing them in the food processor.
  3. Place the miso and water in a small bowl, and stir them together with a fork to form a loose paste. Add the paste and all of the remaining ingredients to the zucchini mixture and stir well.
    (We did the entire mixing in the food processor.)
  4. Form 3–4 small burger patties, each about ½ inch thick, using approximately ½ cup of the mixture per patty. (If smaller burgers are desired, use less of the mixture).
  5. Place the burgers on a dehydrator tray lined with a nonstick sheet and dehydrate them at 105 degrees for 4 hours. Turn the burgers over onto a mesh screen (without a nonstick sheet) and continue dehydrating for 2–8 hours longer, or until the outside is crusty and the inside is moist and chewy.
  6. Stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator, Zoom Burgers will keep for up to 3 days.

Fermented Sweet Peppers

We flavored this with salsa type seasonings. You can flavor it to your taste using parsley mustard seeds,... We added this to chopped tomatoes with a little chili powder for a salsa or to top fajitas, tamales, a salad...

sweet peppers, cored and sliced (strips or squares) enough to fill a wide mouth quart jar
1 clove of garlic
1/2 tsp cumin
cilantro leaves
onion, thinly sliced

2-3 TBS salt
1 quart water

Grape leaves

Directions: Rinse the peppers and slice as slices if using in salads, squares if using in a salsa.
Fill the jar halfway with the peppers, add the spices and onion slices and then fill the remaining jar with peppers. Leaving about an inch at the top. Cover with brine and then cover with a grape leaf. We use airlock lids.

Ferment on the counter for 4 days and then refrigerate.

Why We Ferment Vegetables

We love the taste of fermented vegetables but there are health benefits.

The fermentation of vegetables is thousands or years old. It is a a simple and inexpensive way to preserve vegetables. The gut friendly microorganisms also convert sugars/carbohydrates into acid helping those watching one's blood sugar.

Fermentation of vegetables keeps the vegetables raw, preserving enzymes and enhancing B 12, folate, iron and vitamin C. It makes the nutrients more available, supports one's immune system, and assists with digestion. PLUS there are no chemical preservatives.

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Fermented Watermelon Rinds

Someone taking the fermenting class was interested in Fermented Watermelon Rinds, so we gave it a try. We used a seedless watermelon. The rind was thin. I believe a seeded watermelon may have a thicker rind and be easier to peel.

Fermented Watermelon Rind Pickles
Makes 1 quart
1 1/2 pounds watermelon rind (enough to fill a quart-size jar)
1 garlic clove, peeled and smashed
1 bay leaf
1/2 teaspoon black peppercorns
1/2 teaspoon coriander seeds
1/2 teaspoon dill seeds
1/2 teaspoon yellow mustard seeds
3 cups water (see Recipe Notes)
1 1/4 ounces (about 2 tablespoons) salt (see Recipe Notes)
Using a spoon, scrape away any remaining flesh from the watermelon rind. Carefully remove the outer green peel using a sharp knife or vegetable peeler. Cut the rind into 1-inch squares or other uniform shapes as desired.
Place the garlic, bay leaf, peppercorns, coriander, dill, and mustard in the bottom of a clean jar. Pack the watermelon rinds into the jar, leaving at least 1-inch headspace at the top of the jar.
Combine the water and salt to make a brine. Pour the brine over the rinds, ensuring that they are covered (you might not use all of the brine). Keep the rinds submerged by weighing them down with a fermentation weight or other clean objects such as a small jelly jar, a rock, or a brine-filled plastic bag. Cover the jar.
Ferment the rinds for 1 to 3 days at room temperature and away from direct sunlight. Taste them daily and transfer them to the refrigerator when they are to your liking. You may notice some bubbles as the rinds ferment; this is a good sign that the lactic acid bacteria are working.
Consume within 3 months. Discard if the pickles develop mold, slime, mush, or disagreeable odors.

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Raw Cauliflower Curry

I found this recipe Live Cauliflower Curry from HA. I don't like a coconut milk based curry, so we altered it to the tomato based curry i enjoy. This is so good!!! We only used a portion of the sauce.

There is a Watermelon Gazpacho recipe about halfway down the page. We highly recommend it. It is followed by a recipe for a Cantaloupe Smoothie.

Ingredients for base:
1 head cauliflower, finely chopped
2/3 cups raw cashews, soaked for 4-8 hours, drained and rinsed
5 dates, pitted and finely chopped
3 green onions, finely chopped
1/4 cup cilantro, finely chopped
1/4 cup mint, finely chopped
1 cup red pepper, finely chopped

Directions: combine all ingredients in a large bowl

Ingredients for sauce:
1/4 cup raw macadamias
3 sundried tomatoes, soaked, save the soaking water
1.5 TBS lemon juice
1/2 TBS curry powder
1/2 tsp salt

Directions: place all ingredients, plus a 1/4 cup of tomato soaking water, in a high speed blender and blend until smooth.
Pour sauce over base and mix. Garnish with extra mint and cilantro if desired.

Nutritional information for 1/4 of the recipe:
calories: 309
fat: 20.1 g
carbs: 30.7 g
protein: 8.9g
fiber: 8.4g

We served this over "bloomed" wild rice