Tag Archives: dates

Raw sweets

TrufDSC_6198.1RAW foodies have a sweet tooth. When looking at some recipe books recently, I noticed salads, appetizers, dips & sauces and snacks, and then… come the desserts. I flipped back, did I miss the entrees? Don’t expect to find a real heavy traditional main dish in RAW recipes, entrees will look like beautiful appetizers and they are likely very filling.
Here are some little truffles, RAW (or quick vegan). They are  less chocolatey, think of the answer to commercial marzipan potatoes and tadaa…the most indulgent way to eat a carrot…
If you care to make this recipe truly live, you will look for unpasteurized RAW almonds, as all domestic (U.S.) almonds require pasteurization and are likely blanched as well. You may find imports from Spain, which need lots of soaking and may have a higher content of bitter almonds in the batch, but they should even be able to sprout. See recipe

Nutty schmear

SchmearDSC_5858What will go on my bread? If you don’t do cheese, cold cuts or liverwurst, you may wonder what will go on your bread. While you can make your own cream cheese or paté, even ajvar in summer, I recommend to experiment  with a wide selection of nut and seed butters.
Europeans grew up with chocolate noisette creams, such as Nutella and Americans have their Peanut butter. Real peanut butter, technically not a nut butter, but a bean butter, is avoided by some because of high aflatoxin and allergy risk. Stores readily sell alternative butters from ‘real’ nuts and seeds, some are even made from peas.

With a food processor, you can make some fresh butters yourself with ingredients of choice, which may also qualify as RAW food.
Doing it yourself  also brings you awareness of how highly concentrated food a butter is. See 1/2 cup of tree nuts turn into concentrated spoonfuls of delightful butters that will be gone quickly. For example hemp butter, which also adds healthy Omega3’s. See recipe

Lazy Sunday breakfasts

GlutenfreeDSC_4681.1Gluten free pancake mixes? This week I stumbled over a recipe that promised good looking pancakes, even without regular flour. While I usually don’t have a Gluten Free regimen at home, I was able custom make my flour blend with a grain mill blender cup. This is really great, as you don’t have to buy multiple bags of expensive and hard to get specialty flour that also may spoil in an instant. If you have a small household, it also helps you to use up f.e. whole brown rice, which won’t last long, plus you have freshly ground flour. This recipe produces nturally dark pancakes with a very yummy crispy rim, which I attribute to the brown rice in it. Prepare the flour blend in batches, which are then quickly to use in the morning. See for recipe

The mother of all slaw

SurowDSC_4645Ever wondered where Cole Slaw is rooted? It must be from somewhere East… In Poland for example, there is Surówka, which means literally ‘raw’ salad, but then there is the German ‘Rohkost’. It is made in varieties with shredded carrots, apples, raisins and cabbage and likely other raw vegetables, plus fresh herbs, such as dill. You can add some sauerkraut to add some beneficial culture. The dressing can be salty or sweet, with plain lemon and spices. But you can also dress it up creamier, for example, add some cashew cream or tofu and replace the sugar from the recipe with a date or alternative sweetener in the blender. It is so fresh and tasty, much fresher than the usual tired and oily slaw. See recipe

The sweet life

SugDSC_0000If sugar is bad for us, which sweetener is wiser to use?
Is Agave Syrup better than Maple Syrup or maybe Xylitol? Is zero calorie better than honey? Diet sodas are often sweetened with Aspartame, is that good?
Many products claim to be better than sugar for different reasons, if you need sugar specific properties, it depends what you want to do with it, if you want to bake, or just want to sweeten your coffee. And of course it also depends what your diet is like.

In doubt use a mashed banana to make ice cream and cold desserts, even pancakes and baked banana bread, it is a superior sweetener without the need of other sweeteners.
Here is an Overview that compares recommendations for different diets. I have tested sweeteners for some time and will update on a regular basis. 

The RAW alternative

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Is RAW better than Cooked? There are surely reasons why you should opt for less processed in first place. Food in its natural state, (and I don’t mean the bogus ‘All Natural’ claim on packaging). Raw food retains more nutrients; some nutrients can be absorbed more readily if food is heated, but it does not mean that there is nothing at all absorbed, when eaten raw or heated below 115˚F. However, when food is cooked, many nutrients and vitamins are lost. Continue reading

Wet punky-pie

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Looks can be so deceiving. Here is my warning: ‘Do not fake your food photography or retouch the soul out of it.’ Today I tried a recipe, that looked like little brownie squares. Although I changed some ingredients, I was not prepared that this was not a regular cake, it did not rise and left the oven merely behaving like a hot pudding. However, after cooling for several hours, it turned into a really nice pumpkin pie, just what I wanted, except I nervously had eaten many pieces along the way checking the ‘status’. Continue reading

Bars and Balls

PowerDSC_3128Some time during the 80’s, there were aerobics, and then there was the advent of power bars. I remember the first ‘Muesli Bars’ sold before my time in college. We ate several ones during breaks, convinced they were healthy and got quite addicted. Then we noticed weight gain as the contents were just a tad nicer as in regular candies. Today, there are so many different bars; bars for athletes, for meal replacement and weight loss programs and Vitamins, even once a ‘Snooze bar’. Most of the commercial ones taste stale, rancid or sticky. But when you find out how easy you can make them fresh, there is really no reason to put up with ‘saw dust and sugar’. The ones I made, were handy when we skipped breakfast today before the snow storm and are a great snack during meetings. Just be aware that it is very concentrated food, a small bite would be more than double the size of nuts and fruits to eat. See recipe

Functional Foods

Brendan Brazier, professional Ironman Triathlete from Vancouver, BC  is also vegan. His early research in the nutritional field has been circling around how to improve performance with nutrition, by minimizing the stress that ordinary and high acidic foods may cause to the body. Brazier moved to a diet that uses naturally ‘functional foods’. Continue reading

Better Sweets

Ah Truffles – I have been craving sweets. Lucky if you have a food processor, that can process sticky dry mixes such as truffles. If you are not so lucky, there are ways to trick an old fashioned blender into doing the job. Try to chop everything separately in dry condition and do the soaking and blending part later by hand. Continue reading

Ancient seeds

Wild amaranth was known by hunters and gatherers throughout the whole Americas. Around 5000 B.C. the plant was domesticated in Mexico together with maize, beans and gourds and independently in other areas of South and Mesoamerica. Even Montezuma paid tribute to this important crop.  I have seen showy red amaranth plants growing wild, or as companion plant in my neighborhood. While the greens are eaten as vegetables, the seeds are harvested at a later stage of maturity.  Continue reading