Wednesday, December 22, 2010

raw in the winter...

i guess i've eaten a little more cooked food now that it's getting colder but i still prefer the raw foods!

gabriel cousens had a post on his site today about eating raw in the winter and here are some tips from the post:

*most warming foods are ginger, cayenne pepper and other hot peppers
*other warming foods include tomatoes, radishes, beets, carrots, daikon, herbs like black pepper and cumin
*soaked, raw grains can be warming in the winter (ex. sprouted quinoa, buckwheat)
*food can be heated slightly and still be considered living - dr. cousens recommends that food can be warmed up to approx. 115 degrees. you can heat up live soups, especially tomato and miso soups (organic lives now has a sprouted chickpea miso! YES!) as well as heating vegetables with some herbs and/or oil
*exercise increases circulation and contributes to body warmth, as does dry skin brushing
*infrared sauna (yyoga flow!) increases circulation and detoxification
*engaging in fast-paced pranayama, or breathing exercises, is also invigorating

so far, so good! i'm so happy the start of winter has been mild. but i'm heading to korea again in a week... so we'll see how that goes!!!

Sunday, December 5, 2010

mon amie smoo thie

the other night i made the most delicious thing... and today i made it again but put it in a bowl as i didn't have a glass big enough...
this is, as patrick cleverly named, the 'mon amie' smoothie:
frozen persimMON
alMONd milk


oh, i put coconut on top in this bowl setting as it was kinda confusing to me eating out of a bowl. like it was icy pudding?

Thursday, November 11, 2010


ok. one more post. another book i have to return to the library is david wolfe's superfoods.
since having the "super ex" smoothie at organic lives, i have become convinced that maca is one of my favourite things. when i am feeling BLEH or hungry or not in the mood for ANYTHING, i have maca in my smoothie (often with cacao and frozen banana) and i'm SET. i am happy and ready to go! i'm not the only one this happens to either, i swear!
so perhaps it's best that i list some things that david wolfe shares about maca, also known as peruvian ginseng...

this root is known to improve the following conditions:

  • anemia
  • chronic fatigue
  • depression
  • infertility and sterility in humans and livestock
  • lack of libido
  • malnutrition
  • menopausal symptoms
  • menstrual discomfort and disorders
  • poor memory
  • stomach cancer
  • stress tension
  • tuberculosis
pretty good, huh?

maca is great with cacao and it's also great in salad dressings and broths... it has a slightly malted flavour, kind of coffee-ish to me sometimes (though i don't drink coffee, i only know the smell). this root's powder is a great emulsifier: it can draw fats/oils together with starches/sugars in a beverage or dessert. 
the recommended amount to have daily is two heaping tablespoons and it's recommended you take one week off per month of consistent use to keep it working nicely for you! 

i generally seem to have a smoothie (with maca!) thursday mornings - seems to be the day i enjoy the boost the most!

the china study.

i requested this book (by t. colin campbell, phd) from the library and finally got it but of course i haven't had to time to read. i got about 1/4 through if that means anything.
so it's due back now but i want to make some notes while i have the book.
i was flipping through to see what i'd be missing and the "eating right: eight principles of food and health" looks especially interesting. i can't wait to read more but for now, here are just the principles to get you thinking:

principle #1: nutrition represents the combined activities of countless food substances. the whole is greater than the sum of its parts.

principle #2: vitamin supplements are not a panacea for good health.

principle #3: there are virtually no nutrients in animal-based foods that are not better provided by plants.

principle #4: genes do not determine disease on their own. genes function only by being being activated, or expressed, and nutrition plays a critical role in determining which genes, good and bad, are expressed.

principle #5: nutrition can substantially control the adverse effects of noxious chemicals.

principle #6: the same nutrition that prevents disease in its early stages (before diagnosis) can also halt or reverse disease in its later stages (after diagnosis). 

principle #7: nutrition that is truly beneficial for one chronic disease will support health across the board.

principle #8: good nutrition creates health in all areas of our existence. all parts are interconnected.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

curry acorn squash bread!

since getting a dehydrator end of september, i've started experimenting making raw "bread". my first bread was garlic, flax, almond and oil and it was so soft, it was hard to keep it in one piece so you really couldn't put anything on it (which is what i wanted!). paul liked it though.
for my second one, i added chia goodness as there's sprouted buckwheat and such in there that i expected to add a nice heartiness. and it was definitely hearty... really nuts and seedsy. i liked it as i could stack stuff on it. paul didn't.
well, here's the latest... a curried acorn squash bread.
one slice is missing of the 4 slices i made as i had to test it, you know? ^_^ i smeared some coconut oil on there and it was perfection! so... to make it... of course i'm not measuring which maybe i should be if i'm posting recipes but i'll do my best:
approx. 1/4 cup ground flax seed, soaked overnight in about twice the water as flax
approx. 1/8 cup (or maybe 1/16) ground almond
about 1/2 acorn squash, cubed then processed in food processor
1 tablespoon or 2 of a curry blend of spices (including turmeric, cardamon, ginger, chili, pepper, fenugreek, clove, garlic, mustard, cinnamon, bay leaf, salt, coriander)

i spread it onto the teflex with a spatula and made it square and scored the square into 4 squares and then dehydrated for about 7 hours at 105 degrees, then i flipped it onto the mat (sans teflex) so the other side could get air and that was on for probably about 7 hours too.

i love it but the true test will be paul tonight ^_^

this is the 2nd "bread" i had made that i enjoyed the texture of but wished i had added some spices to it. though i suppose the toppings could make it fine but i don't know, tons of flavour is fun!

a few weeks ago when i had kale chips and crackers and strange yam chips (i really have to use the peeler to make them thin and proper rather than an odd slice of chewy crunchiness) and banana cacao strips...

and a few weeks ago when i had crackers made and a "cheesy" type thing made with macadamia nuts that i wasn't sure what to do with so i put it on top of salad. this meal was AWESOME and it took maybe 5 minutes to put together!

last weekend or the weekend before, i took over a snack package to paul of a banana cranberry flax crepe type roll, apple chips, cacao almond coconut macaroon, strawberry chips, kale chips, sprouted teriyaki sunflower seeds, red onion flax crackers and my 2 kinds of breads! i gotta get in the habit of making so many things at once so i can do this more! it was so fun putting together all these treats for him!

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

buddha-full! raw vegan delights on the north shore! YAY!

a fresh juices and smoothie bar opened up just west of lonsdale in north vancouver in september... it is called buddha-full and i'm quite excited about it! the first time i went, i was thinking there were some raw things to eat but they "just" (who am i to say "just" - this is so exciting regardless!) had vegan baked goods and awesome drinks... i had the vibrance-C (ginger, mango, orange juice, pineapple, banana) smoothie...
 the next time i went, i got the ultimate feel-good smoothie (i swear, maca and cacao can do me no wrong - they fix me right up!!!) - the tall totem. i somehow forgot to take a photo of it. but then i took a raw cheesecake with raspberry coulis to go with me on the seabus. wow, does something like this make the cattle crossing (er, seabus journey) so decadent!
and now finally, today i got to go again! i had a ganesha's greens (with E3 live boost) juice and the raw veggie burger. it was so hard not gulping this down in quick bites. so delicious! so many flavours and textures!
 and well, it was hard thinking of when i would get to go again to try the raw pizza so i ordered it as well! hehe. a slightly chewy cracker of a crust with a yummy tomato sauce and cauliflower, kale, mushrooms, red pepper and cheeze.
this place has lots going on... i know there is a knitting club tuesday nights and they are having a halloween party. they host potlucks and art and music and massage and nutrition advice... i hope this place continues to grow!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

cascada farallas... day 10... early morning... last bites of bliss...

it was super sweet... they prepared some papaya and pineapple for me to eat in the morning. i still remember me saying the night before, "i cannot eat the cereal in the morning. i will not eat the cereal in the morning". um, so yah, i was not looking forward to the 3.5 hours on the road to the airport and no yummy foods. oh yah, when we got to the airport, it was so hard to find ANYTHING fresh. i saw one apple at one of the food court places but by the time i got to the front of the line, it was gone! it was so sad. i had dehydrated bananas and pineapple with me but there's only so much of that i can eat. ANYWAYS... i am drooling now thinking of eating this papaya and pineapple again. i never liked papaya, in canada or mexico or hawaii or wherever, until i came to costa rica...

cascadas farallas, costa rica, day 9 (last full day! so hard to leave!)

last fruit platter breakfast... sigh!!!
 last lunch on the beach! some sort of creamy dressing on salad with pumpkin seeds...
 dinner is introduced with squash soup...
 and ooh... raw pad thai? fun!!!
 coconut tart bliss for dessert!!!

Monday, October 25, 2010

cascadas farallas, costa rica, day 8

i remember asking the night before if i could have the chia cereal again. and the next breakfast, there it was! i really gotta try and replicate this coconut banana creamy goodness. cinnamon and blueberries also make it so amazing! even after eating chia cereal for at least 3 weeks of breakfasts in korea ^_^

lunch on the beach! salad with a sesame papaya (?) dressing. yummy!

cauliflower soup with cracker to start off dinner right....

eggplant canneloni with a walnut hemp portobello pate. YES.

turkish delight for dessert that really didn't resemble turkish delight at all but no bigs. definitely better than the durian creme but not as great as the sorbet or chocolates! this had apricot, sesame, coconut and cacao...

cascadas farallas, costa rica, day 7

the breakfast fruit platter... so fun eating fresh rambutan (the spiky fruit) though it seems you don't get much per fruit - you gotta squish out the jelly-ish stuff and eat around the pit. i love the dried stuff too. so sweet and awesome!

lunch... coleslaw with cabbages and pepper... so lovely to be eating at the beach...

dinner started with a (virgin) pina colada and avocado dim sum! so awesome. in seaweed and served with a peanut sauce.

the main course was a curry crepe. i can't wait to be making my own crepes and wraps.

okay and if i remember correctly, this is the tiramisu parfait that had durian "mascarpone". nothing could disguise that durian taste! and the "chocolate cookies" in the parfait tasted like fruit cake. bah. and really the only thing i liked in this thing was the banana. and i think there was some coconut in there somewhere. my friend couldn't finish hers and declined saving it for the morning. i hated not being keen to finish hers like i would normally be. i wonder if i will ever like durian...

cascadas farallas, costa rica, day 6

um so i don't know what is taking me so long to update this blog thing. i really have to finish my food vacation photo uploading though. this is getting ridiculous.
so this is my sunday in costa rica back in august...
i had a fruit platter (or 2) for breakfast. which i most commonly did. and i've actually started really enjoying just eating fruit in the mornings now. even with more wintery weather coming. i don't feel any different or more hungry if i only eat fruit or if i do a maca cacao banana smoothie or chia cereal or whatever. and i feel best when i eat a bunch of different fruit - first thing on my way to the bus, when i get to work and when i have a break in the morning... it's just great. what would be greater though is if i was in costa, eating all the amazing fruit there every morning... sigh...

lunch was starfruit juice and a zucchini pesto! YAH!!!

dinner started with zucchini soup...

and the main dish was a durian quiche. the crust was a carrot/zucchini/flax creation. i appreciated the other flavours and textures but i find it really hard to get into the durian taste. the creaminess was AMAZING but gah, i don't like the flavour and it's so hard to hide! it's so good for you but still...

dessert was a mango strawberry torte (cheesecake). YES!

Friday, September 10, 2010

cascadas farallas, costa rica, day 5

juice and fruit plate(s) to start... so it was becoming a habit of having a fruit plate in the morning. which is great but sometimes i was craving something more heavy, you know? my friend had vegan cereal but then would be brought a fruit plate as well! one time she got a bonus fruit (banana) too! she let me eat it. i miss my fruit plate mornings now, for sure.

lunch at the beach... a coleslaw with apple, grape, walnut and celery and a neat 'bread'. wasn't sure if it was spicy or if there was something in the dressing. but it was really nice!

dinner started with carrot hummous and raw crackers.

the entree was "moroccan tangine"... i hate that it's been so long since i was there that i forget what was all in this!

dessert was the "immortal parfait": a chocolate mousse with coconut creme and mint. lovely!

cascadas farallas, costa rica, day 4

juice and fruit plate greatness before a rainforest walk and ziplining through old and new growth forests...

kale juice (with apple, lemon and cilantro) and "green salad".

and probably my favourite dinner of the trip...
started with watermelon juice and gazpacho (my favourite raw soup, for sure)

then, a raw taco!!!! seriously drooling about this numerous times since then. i can't wait to get a dehydrator to start experimenting making wraps and such!

dessert... mora (blackberry) sorbet (with coconut)

breakfast at organic lives!

there is now an AMAZING granola at organic lives AND this absolutely delicious (and desserty) peach crepe!

i got two to go last night so my friend heading to the airport early early this morning could eat something yummy and i could celebrate friday? (and perhaps a new job!)

anyways... wow. coconut wrap with a coconut creme and i would love to have a day where i could just sit at the beach in the sun again with a million of these beside me to eat! hehe. oh and a coconut with a straw in it. is that too much to ask?

Thursday, September 9, 2010

cascadas farallas, costa rica, day 3

this was the only day we had noni to start the morning (before yoga). i almost finished all of mine but wow, that stuff smells like something awful and it's hard to drink something just because you know it's really good for you!
so my friend and i were grateful for the usual juice at breakfast (perhaps a blend of pineapple, papaya and something else?) and i had a fruit platter...

lunch featured maracuya (passion fruit) juice and a kale salad with avocado dressing. YAY!

dinner started with tomato pave (featuring olives and pinenuts! yes!). for future reference, here is a tomato pave recipe i'd like to try in the future.

my main course was the heart of palm lasagne. i found it a little lemony for my liking though perhaps i was just drawing too many comparisons to organic lives's lasagne which has perfected the texture and comforts of lasagne flavours.

dessert was homemade chocolates featuring cacao (of course! love it!!!), coconut, nuts and raisins. excellent!


so i interrupt my so-called flow of costa rica posts yet again... but i just wanted to post something about sejuiced in vancouver (west 4th, near zulu records) as i haven't yet.
my friend and i have gone here for lunch for quite awhile now as he works nearby and i've always appreciated their 'super' (vegan) burger and getting a fresh juice. now that i'm doing the raw thing mostly, i love that they have a raw caesar salad! with raw croutons and crackers and all! i can't remember what juice i got today but it had beet and ginger in it so obviously it was awesome. i love this place. oh yah, and they also have a punch card for drinks so every 10th one is free! bubble tea houses here in vancouver have been discontinuing stamp cards but sejuiced hasn't! LOVE IT.
on a side note, there really should be organic fruit bubble tea houses here. i haven't had bubble tea in forever and i guess i haven't wanted to have one... it seemed to always be an issue of getting no sugar and no "non-dairy creamer" (i don't care if it's non-dairy! i still don't want it!) in my blended drink.
um, anyways! i love sejuiced!

Thursday, September 2, 2010

vancouver is awesome.

okay so i have to interrupt my stream of posts to come of costa rica drool-worthy foods to quickly say, THANK YOU WEDNESDAY. i got back on friday and was feeling super discouraged about being home, being cold, being poor, being away from the green beauty that is costa rica.
but then yesterday came along and reminded me of why vancouver is awesome.
first, despite recently moving into my own place and having no dishes, i made up a great salad and enjoyed it out of a pot. i don't use pots anymore for cooking but hooray for them being there for me to eat giant salads out of!

then, i was able to finally hit up the farmer's market. there is a wednesday one at main street station which rules as i usually work the weekends when the westend one is on. last summer, there was one in gastown which RULED but it was a trial run and i guess it wasn't successful enough to do again this year. and since i generally seem to be away most of the summers, it's september when i get a month of bliss of farmer's market time! so i was super excited to collect on the local, organic produce! so inspiring! and i got some curry crackers from radha too :)

then! i got to meet up with my sister for gorilla food. we both got the jungle coleslaw (SO good!) and she got a burger and i got the main st monkey sandwich that i was craving all day. i last had one of their sandwiches the day i got home from korea so it was so nice to get one again.

and then to complete the day of awesome (though it would have been 200% amazing if it had worked out with my friend who i'm trading piano lessons for a chair to be delivered), i went to talent time that night. and a friend who runs an amazing company of earth-friendly moving boxes, frogbox, who helped me do a zero-emissions move across the city, came to the show too! it's been exciting to see how the crowd is growing at this show.
ooh and i brought chlorella (with spearmint) to drop in my water at the biltmore so it wouldn't taste nasty and also so i'd have this green drink to freak people out with. er, whatever. it made drinking more exciting.
i made a pinata for it (full of money - it's a 'cover charge pinata', organic vegan lollipops, pencils, stickers and boxes of raisins) and again, this whole raw thing does wonders for multi-uses of kitchen products. like my stove becomes workspace for crafts! perfect! i haven't started storing stuff in my oven yet but who knows.

anyways, after a summer off, the variety show of inspired and earnest people of all sorts of talents came back to the biltmore. it happens the first wednesday of every month, it's $8 and starts at 9 but if you want a seat of some sort, the lineup to get in starts around 8. i was particularly impressed by the 12 year old violinist. and then at the end, the vancouver complaints choir performed and it was glorious! i loved the kind of complaints veda hille collected to represent the kinds of things vancouver people complain about: cars vs bikes, no beer in the grocery store and umbrella etiquette.
and it reminds me of helsinki which i spent one day in last summer. i guess theirs was the second ever complaints choir. anyways, when i was there, i was excited to find one place with raw/living foods - vegetaari. i went 2x the one day i was there and told the lady i was from vancouver and was excited to check out her place. she said beautiful things to me that of course i can't remember at the moment. but i can't help but relate beautiful food to beautiful people and beautiful love all around.

so... i may be back home and a bit restless for my next adventure (and seemingly in a rambling random mood today?), but there are plenty of exciting and inspiring things happening in my own city to keep me occupied for awhile.
thank you, vancouver.