Saturday, October 31, 2015

Halloween Candy

Happy Halloween!!!

We hosted a "Making Healthy Candy" class last week. 

We made Cacao Peppermint Sticks, mock mini Milky-Way bars, and two different types of Cacao bark, one with fruit and seeds and the other with crispie buckwheat. 

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Fully Raw Kristina Chocolate Peanut Butter Cupcakes

Here is Kristina's recipe for Chocolate Peanut Butter Filled Cupcakes

We made a few changes. These are so good. Here is our recipe.

Ingredients for the cupcake:
2 cups dried mulberries
1 cup pitted dates
6 dried figs
1 cup chia seeds
1 TBS cinnamon
1/4 cup carob powder
1/4 cup cacao powder
2-4 TBS water, for the desired stickiness
Directions: Place all the ingredients in the food processor, process until sticky
Press 1-2 TBS into a cupcake cup liner, leaving a hollowed area for the almond butter.
Place 1-2 TBS almond butter in each cupcake
Cover with 1 TBS cupcake mix. Gently pat

Ingredients for frosting:
1 cup soaked cashews
6 pitted medjool dates
dash of cinnamon
1 tsp vanilla or ~ 1 inch of vanilla bean
1/3-1/2 cup water, for desired thickness
1/4 cup grated carrots (for green wheat grass powder, for red shredded beets)

Directions: place all ingredients in a high speed blender. Blend to frosting consistency. Frost cupcakes and decorate with cacao nibs

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Fall Fiesta Sweet-potato-chorizo-soup

The recipe for sweet-potato-chorizo-soup was sent from Andrew Wilder from Eating Rules. My husband will love this.

Fall Fiesta Sweet Potato Soup
Recipe Type: Soup
Cuisine: Southwest
Prep Time:  
Cook Time:  
Total Time:  
Serves/Yield: 6-8 Servings
A nutritionally dense Fall soup packed with flavor and color. Uses chorizo and powdered chipotle.
For the Soup
  • 6-8 cups organic chicken broth (depending on desired thickness)
  • 3 large organic sweet potatoes peeled & diced (approximately 9 cups diced)
  • 1 medium organic onion
  • 4 medium cloves organic garlic
  • 1 pound organic chorizo
  • 2 tablespoon organic extra virgin olive oil we water sauteed instead)
  • Juice of 2 large limes (approximately ½ cup)
  • 1 teaspoon organic coriander
  • 1 teaspoon organic cumin
  • ½ teaspoon organic powdered chipotle, for mild heat (1 teaspoons will make medium heat, 1½- 2 teaspoons will make hot heat)
For the Garnish
  • organic cilantro
  • organic roasted red peppers
  • organic pepitas
  • organic plain Greek yogurt
  • diced avocado
  • organic tortilla chips
  • limes
  1. Peel sweet potatoes, dice into small chunks- place into 10-12 quart stock pot. Set Aside.
  2. Dice onion. Set aside.
  3. In a large frying pan over med-med/high heat, add olive oil. Take chorizo out of casing, add to frying pan. Break apart meat with spatula while sautéing. Once meat is cooked remove to a plate with a paper towel to absorb extra fat. Refrigerate until needed.
  4. While pan is still hot add diced onion. Sauté until caramelized. Add coriander, cumin and chipotle towards the end of sautéing and heat for 1 addi-tional minute. Deglaze pan with about ½ cup of chicken broth to ensure all spice flavor is picked up. Add to potato stock pot.
  5. Peel and crush garlic, add to stockpot along with remaining chicken broth.
  6. Bring to a boil over high heat. Cover and lower heat to med/low Cook for approximately 45 minutes or until potato is extremely tender. Juice the limes and add at the end of cooking process. Turn off heat.
  7. With an immersion blender, blend until smooth. Add cooked chorizo and warm soup over medium heat until desired temperature.
  8. Garnish with favorite toppings.

Vegan Fall Fiesta Sweet Potato and Lentil Soup

Vegan Fall Fiesta Sweet Potato and Lentil Soup
We altered the Sweet Potato Chorizo recipe to a vegan version

Here is the link for the Chorizo spice mix. This is enough for 10 pounds of sausage, so we only want to use a 1/10th, 1-2 tsp for the soup.
Chorizo Spice Mix
  • 1 tbsp. cumin seed ground
  • 1 tbsp. granulated garlic
  • 2 tbsp. Ancho chile powder OR substitute with a combination of 2 tbsp. paprika mixed with ½ tsp. cayenne powder OR 2 tbsp. paprika mixed with 1 tsp. red chili powder
  • 1 tsp. coriander seed ground 
  • 1 tsp. sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp ground cloves
  • ½ tsp. ground black pepper
  • ½ tsp. oregano
  • ½ tsp. thyme
  • ¼ tsp. ground cinnamon
1 cup red lentils rinsed and drained
8 cups organic vegetable broth
3 large organic sweet potatoes peeled & diced (approximately 9 cups diced)
1 medium organic onion, diced
4 medium cloves organic garlic, minced
Juice of 2 large limes (approximately ½ cup)
1-2 tsp chorizo seasoning mix
1 teaspoon organic coriander
1 teaspoon organic cumin
½ teaspoon organic powdered chipotle for mild heat 

For the Garnish
organic cilantro
organic roasted red peppers
organic pepitas
vegan cheese
diced avocado
organic tortilla chips

  1. Water saute the diced onion. Add coriander, cumin and chipotle towards the end of sautéing and heat for 1 additional minute. Deglaze pan with about ½ cup of vegetable broth to ensure all spice flavor is picked up. Add to sweet potato stock pot.
  2. Peel and crush garlic, add to stockpot along with remaining vegetable broth and broth.
  3. Add the lentils
  4. Bring to a boil over high heat. Cover and lower heat to med/low Cook for approximately 45 minutes or until sweet potato is extremely tender and the lentils are done. Juice the limes and add at the end of cooking process. Turn off heat.
  5. With an immersion blender, blend until smooth. We place 1/2 the soup in a high speed blender, blend and return to the pot instead of using the immersion blender.
  6. Garnish with favorite toppings.

Raw Almond Milky Way-like candy

Here is the original recipe is for mini Raw Snickers. The first time we made it the chocolate melted too quickly and the caramel was too sweet for us. We also used maple syrup instead of honey for the nougat.
Here is our version:
Ingredients:1 cup almonds, unsoaked or Trader Joe's almond meal
1 cup cashews, unsoaked or Trader Joe's cashew meal
3 tablespoons maple syrup
1 tablespoon water, or more if needed
1.5 cup dates ~18 medjool dates
1 inch vanilla bean
¼ teaspoon sea salt or Himalayan salt
1 cup water

1 cup cacao powder 
½ cup maple syrup
½ cup cacao butter
1 TBS lucuma powder
1 tsp maca powder
½ tsp vanilla extract
pinch of Himalayan salt 
Soak dates in the water for an hour. Reserve soaking water. Meanwhile, make nougats.
In a coffee grinder, grind cashews into a fine powder meal. Remove. Process the almonds into a fine powder. or use Trader Joe's ground cashew and almond 
Place nut powders in a large bowl. Add maple syrup and water. Stir until mixture is a thick paste-like consistency. Form nougat into miniature candy pieces by pressing the nougat on parchment paper in a square pan and cut the nougat into bars to freeze for an hour. Remove from the freezer and cut with a knife.
To make the caramel, process soaked dates, vanilla bean and sea salt in a blender. Using soaking water one tablespoon at time, blend until you achieve a thick creamy mixture. Spread caramel on top of nougat pieces and return the candy to the freezer while you make the chocolate. 
In a large bowl, whisk cacao powder, maple syrup, cacao butter and water together until smooth and creamy. Pour chocolate over candy pieces and freeze an additional hour or until chocolate sets hard.
Yield: depending on size ~ 40 mini candy pieces

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Lemon Tahini Dressing

We were listening to a summit about hormones. The speaker suggested using fats to balance them. She suggested using pumpkin and flax for two weeks and sesame and sunflower for two weeks following the cycles of the moon. The full moon is tonight, so we are switching to sesame and sunflower. We have plenty of salad dressings with flax and pumpkin that we LOVE, we are trying a lemon-tahini-dressing until the November New Moon on the 11th.

2/3 cup tahini, at room temperature 
cup water
1/4 cup lemon juice 
garlic cloves, minced 
1/4 cup parsley, chopped
teaspoon salt
pinch cayenne
dates, pitted (optional)
Directions: Place everything in a high speed blender. Blend until smooth.

Saturday, October 24, 2015

Peppermint Cacao Sticks

Holly sent this recipe to us. We have altered it to fit our raw needs and taste buds. This will be a great Christmas treat.

Peppermint Cacao Sticks
  • 6 tablespoons cacao butter, melted
  • 4 tablespoons raw cacao powder
  • 4 tablespoons almond butter
  • 2 tablespoons raw honey or maple syrup
  • 1 tsp vanilla or 1 inch vanilla bean
  • ½ teaspoon peppermint extract (or ground peppermint leaves, 1/2 TBS)
  • pinch of salt
  • 3-6 medjool dates, depending on the sweetness desired
  • ½ cup crispie nuts, (soaked 12 hours, drained, rinsed, drained, dehydrated)
  1. in a large bowl stir together the cacao butter and sweetener
  2. heat the mixture slowly on low heat over simmering water (double boiler) until cacao butter has melted
  3. combine all ingredients in a food processor
  4. pour in a 7x5-inch dish lined with parchment paper
  5. refrigerate until chocolate is set then cut into sticks. Store in airtight container in freezer.

Here is the original recipe for Peppermint Sticks

Friday, October 23, 2015

Sheba made her final transition

Sheba was so special to and for me. 
Her first transition was she given to our son for his 10th birthday by our homeless friend who rescues dogs in the woods. As a puppy, Sheba alerted people of oncoming seizures. Melanie thought she would be a good fit for our son due to his past seizure history. When our dog Heidi began to have seizures, Sheba would bark prior to the seizure, giving us time to make sure Heidi was in a safe place.

Calling Melanie was tough last night,especially when she told me Sheba's brother, Dakota, isn't doing too well either.

Her next transition was we took Sheba to school to become our son's therapy dog because SHE decided to be his stair guide, walking each step at his pace. He would grab her harness or fur to walk up and down the stairs. As she grew, so did he. They were the perfect size for each other.
When we would walk, our son would hold the leash but Sheba would walk him. Thankfully she taught Solomon to do the same.
She would lay in his room while he slept while we were downstairs. She would alert someone if he was waking to assist him out of bed. She would watch him in the yard while i was gardening and come to get me if he fell or bark if there was a snake nearby. She even watched him on the deck for me before she made her final transition yesterday. 

She did little things that Al and I enjoyed, such as me asking her is Al had his tie on. She would nod or shake her head. She as always correct. If his tie was on, it was time for Al to feed the dogs, and she would prance.

Her third transition was, in our son's mind, he hadn't needed her for the last 5 years (but I still relied on her). His strength had increased, he grew too tall, he was becoming independent, and Solomon became his "pet". In God's perfect time, her fatty tumors had increased in numbers, and she was given a diagnosis of cancer. I love how things like this work. We retired her, or at least allowed her to slow down because she wouldn't take the job of retirement. 

The last couple of months our son would spot HER coming down the stairs, walking at her pace. I love when things come full circle. We were blessed to have her in our lives!

I believe Sheba knew that our son had others to "watch him" with us receiving CNA services this month. She knew she could go to her eternal home for her final transition where she could do her "job", free of pain and suffering, maybe she even walked someone "home" yesterday. She was just that type of dog.

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Raw Cacao Bark recipes

This recipe is for Raw Chocolate Bark Rawified 
  • 1/2 cup coconut oil or raw cacao butter
  • 1/4 cup raw cacao powder
  • 1/4 cup fruit and nuts
    • Almonds, hazelnuts, raisins, cashews, goji berries, hemp seeds, walnuts, macadamia nuts, dates, cranberries, pumpkin seeds, dried bananas, pecans, peanuts, shredded coconut, and dried fruits such as blueberries, mango, cherries, or apricot.
  • 1-2 tbsp honey, maple syrup, or agave (optional)
  • 1 tbsp flavoring (optional)
    •  Grated ginger, orange zest, chili pepper, cinnamon, mint, vanilla or coffee bean. 

    Put the cacao butter in a bowl, and place that bowl inside another bowl filled with warm water.  This will allow the cacao butter to heat up just enough to melt, without killing the enzymes.  Add the cacao powder and sweetener, and mix well.  Next throw in your fruit, nuts, and flavorings, pouring into an 8 x 8 pan lined with wax paper.  Place the pan in the freezer for around 10 to 15 minutes, then remove and cut into 16 even pieces.  If you use coconut oil, store in the fridge to keep from melting as it will soften at room temperature.  

    This one is one of my favorites, reminding me of rice crispie candy bars. It is vegan and nut free bark. The recipe is from the Rawguru
    ½ cup (126g) raw cacao butter
    2 tsp coconut oil
    ¼ cup (25g) cacao powder
    2 TBS lucuma powder (or mesquite powder)
    1 TBS(15ml) maca powder
    1 tbsp (20ml) agave nectar, maple syrup or honey
    3/8 cup (75g) activated buckwheat (crispie)


    1) Gently melt the cacao butter in a double-boiler.

    2) Mix in the coconut oil.

    3) Mix in the cacao, maca, lucuma and sweetener

    4) Mix in the buckwheat  and stir until the grains are completely covered.

    5) Spread mix onto a Teflex sheet or baking paper and freeze until the chocolate sets.

    6) Break frozen sheet into bite-sized pieces.

    7) Store bark in the refrigerator or freezer.

    Tuesday, October 13, 2015


    We saw this on facebook 31-days-of-occupational-therapy. It is 31 days of activities from an occupational therapist. Since our son has global delays, this may be something fun to do with him. I will add the activities as Colleen adds them.

    Thursday, October 8, 2015

    Sprouting Sunflower Greens

    Our friend Linda taught us to sprout sunflower greens. We tried it but had fungus issue. We have tried again using organic sprouting small sunflower seeds, instead of bird seed, and have had wonderful success.

    We are using the potting trays (10" x 20"). We use 6 cups of vermiculite and 2-2.5 cups of sunflower seeds.

    Day 1: We soak the sunflower seeds for 8-12 hours, making sure they are completely covered.

    Day 2: After soaking we drain the water onto the vermiculite. This water has nutrients in it. We spread the seeds evenly over the vermiculite and cover with a second tray to emulate darkness.

    Twice a day we water the seeds, draining off the access water for 10-12 days.

    Around day 4, once the seeds begin to sprout, keep the cover off the tray. Move the seedlings to a well lite area.
    When watering for the next week, gently rub your hand over the seedlings to assist with the removal of the shells.

    Around day 10 cut the seedlings to store in the refrigerator in a produce bag. We wrap ours in a paper towel and then place them in a plastic bag.

    We give our roots and vermiculite to our chickens to scratch and enjoy or it can be composted.

    We wash our used trays with a vinegar solution and dry for the next round of sprouts.

    tomatoes and even more tomatoes

    Add caption
    We purchased end of the season yellow tomatoes at the farmers' market this weekend, 20+ pounds, for $10.
    Yellow tomatoes don't can well due to the low acid content.
    We washed, dried and froze  about a quarter of them and gave several pounds away to friends and family.

    AND we made

    Raw Chili
    The link is for the Raw chili  recipe. It is basically a clean out the refrigerator recipe using corn, onions, peppers, zucchini, mushrooms, celery, and spices.

    This is a simple gazpacho recipe.
    2-3 cups diced tomatoes
    1/4 cup diced celery
    1/4 cup diced red pepper
    1/4 cup diced cucumber
    1 TBS lemon juice
    1 TBS olive oil
    1/2 tsp salt
    1/4 tsp pepper

    directions:  Combine the above ingredients in a large bowl. Take half of the mix and blend it in a high speed blender. Pour into the bowl and mix.

    Eggplant bacon (EB), lettuce and tomato sandwiches using raw onion bread and a vegan mayonnaise.

    Grilled tomatoes with daiya cheese and pesto pizza

    My sister posted a recipe on facebook using tomatoes, pesto and cheese over chicken. We thought it would be a great pizza.

    2 TBS pesto
    1/4 cup daiya cheese
    1 tomato sliced
    sauteed mushrooms and onions
    pizza crust, tortilla, or onion bread (we used onion bread)

    Directions: spread the pesto over the crust. We sliced the tomatoes and placed around the crust. Top with the sauteed onions and mushrooms. Top with Daiya cheese. Bake at 350 for 20 minutes.

    Living Tomato sauce
    2 cups sun dried tomatoes soaked for 6 hrs. 

    7 yellow tomatoes
    4 garlic cloves
    1/2 tsp. salt
    1 tbs. red or yellow onion
    3 tbs. extra virgin olive oil
    2 tbs. lemon juice
    2 tsp. dried basil

    1 tsp dried parsley
    1-2 tsp. dried oregano
    1/2 tsp. dried thyme
    3 pitted dates

    Blend everything in a high speed blender and serve. We froze half of it to use later.

    And we still have a 5 pounds of tomatoes.

    Tuesday, October 6, 2015

    Stuffed Delicata Squash

    We love fall and the winter squash. Tonight we are eating stuffed delicata squash with raw chili. The stuffed squash recipe is so easy!!!

    Ingredients for the stuffing:
    1 cup red lentils, rinse well and drain
    1 cup wild rice, rinse well and drain
    1/2 cup shiitake mushrooms, sliced
    1/2 cup diced onions
    1/2 cup diced red peppers
    4 cups vegetable broth
    2 TBS nutritional yeast

    Directions: place all the ingredients in the rice cooker and cook.

    2 delicata squash, halved and seeded
    1/2 cup daiya cheddar cheese

    Directions: fill the delicata squash "boats" with the stuffing, top with cheese. and bake at 350 for 45 minutes until soft..