Of course, as if I didn’t have enough to prepare for a multi-week, cross-ocean trip – including food for a 12 hour plane ride since United is too silly to provide gluten-free meals! – I like to use big trips as a deadline for achieving stuff around the house: clearing out clutter, seeing friends that I have been too “busy” to connect with in the past month, even creating future recipes. And when I say “like”, I mean, this is an old habit that I fall back on in times of stress, which only makes me more stressed out. Makes perfect sense right? You’ve got a lot on your plate, so you might as well add some more! Eeesh…Really I should be doing these things a little bit at a time, day by day, getting energy-draining or clutter-clearing tasks done immediately. I’m slowly improving on this habit, but I do have a long way to go.
ahhhhhhhhhhhh your produce box makes me so jealous!!!! salad and green smoothie every week, holla. and KALE. oh momma kale…
Joe: got some beef stew meat. What veggies should I put in it?
Kate: Hmm beef stew…sweet potatoes. Traditional is carrots, potatoes, peas. I think any kind of root veggie would be great: rutabegas, parsnips, acorn squash, butternut squash. Butternut squash! That would be really good. Spring onions. Garlic? I can’t think of any American produce right now….some sort of spinach or spinach family…Chard! No , kale. KALE.
Kate: Yeah if you could post it that would be great! You can also put your website up there too and get your name out. Btw, are you friends with civilized caveman on facebook????!!!!
Joe: yes walter yes
Joe: also, thought you would like my eating adventures… went to yoga first thing this morning and then was having a hungry day. breakfast was:
9 over easy eggs
2/3 bag baby spinach
2 GF bagels with almond butter and sliced strawberries and banana
handful baby carrots
was surprised by the quantity, but I think it was partially because I had a hungry day yesterday too and never quite satisfied the hunger…
I do enjoy hearing about your eating adventures. What kind of GF bagels do you get? probably an extra hungry day from all the travel and whatnot. I can’t believe you eat an average of 7-9 eggs! and he’s roughly the size of a barge! Gastoooooooooon….
As you can see, my brother does most of the intelligent communication – asking questions, telling stories, sharing recipes and brainstorming ideas. I usually respond with emphatic capitalization of the foods I want to eat in that very moment. Can you turn vegetables into an onomatopoeia? One amazing oversight is that I haven’t included any of the other 10,000 emails where we use the word awesome repeatedly. But having someone like Joe to share food adventures, questions, and inspiration with is nothing short of awesome and awe-inspiring. I’m incredibly lucky to have him as a friend, role model, and brother. And we’re lucky that he is sharing his smoothie-making magic with us today! This guy is a wonder at the juicer, blender, and grill:
Rushing to work and don’t have time to make a big breakfast? Need a summer cool-down but don’t want to reach for ice cream or sno-cones? Just want to experience the fantastic flavors of your favorite fruits and vegetables blended together? Green smoothies to the rescue!
Coconut milk was a staple in my smoothies until I discovered something better: avocado!
Avocado is an under-used smoothie ingredient that makes any drink incredibly creamy.
Start adding ¼-1/2 an avocado to your smoothies and I guarantee you’ll never go back!
The healthy fats keep my blood sugar stable and keep me full all morning – no crashes like after donuts or coffee.
I throw a handful of greens into my smoothies to give me extra energy and vitamins. Amazingly, they blend right in and you don’t even taste them. I usually use red or green kale, but swiss chard or spinach work well too.
Top your smoothie off with a superfood like raw cacao powder, maca, ground flax seeds,
or chia seeds, and you’ll truly have a breakfast of champions! This version includes chia
seeds, which become awesomely gelatinous and interesting when soaked overnight.
1 cup frozen blueberries (organic, if possible)
½ ripe avocado
Handful red kale
1 T chia seeds soaked overnight in ½ cup water
2 cups water (add more for a thinner consistency)
(optional) few drops stevia for added sweetness
Place all ingredients in blender and blend until smooth. Pour and enjoy!
Makes one Joe-sized breakfast, or two large smoothies.
did you find a suitable blender in MI? made some fresh almond milk last night, havent done that in a while and it was delish.
I LOVE FOOD
are you scheming? [skiing]
Joe: I like how we seem to be making similar diet changes independently…
Oh. It definitely is.
Many thanks to Kelly of the Spunky Coconut, whose 60 Second Decadent ChocoChia “Milkshake” Inspired this new breakfast-dessert. Kelly has a new cookbook out too –The Spunky Coconut Dairy-Free Ice Cream: Soy-Free, Sugar-Free, Vegan – just in time for a healthy summer!
Creamy Coconut Cacao Nib Pudding
makes 1 serving
3-5 small ice cubes. I like the volume that 5 provides, but my little scrappy blender does better with just 3. If you have a Vitamix or something equally fancy, 5 shouldn’t be a problem.
½ cup full fat coconut milk, make sure it is BPA free!
1 T raw cacao nibs
1 t raw cacao powder
⅓ of a ripe avocado
10 drops vanilla stevia (you could probably substitute 1 T of honey or agave nectar here)
Combine all ingredients into your blender. Blend for 2-3 minutes until pudding is completely smooth. Enjoy immediately. I doubt you could wait any longer anyway.
Next time I am going to add some mint leaves and see how that turns out! I want to make this a little more shamrock-y.
Part of Diet, Dessert, and Dogs’ Wellness Weekend June 21-25
Also part of Fit & Fabulous Fridays #37 from Amee’s Savory Dish
Entered in Slightly Indulgent Tuesdays at SImply-Sugar and Gluten-Free!
Submitted to Gluten-Free Easily’s Virtual GF Support Group June 2012
Until the day when I can fulfill my tabe-travel dreams (taberu is the verb for eat in Japanese), I’ll contently stuff myself with this roast chicken. One of the benefits of living alone is that sometimes you don’t have to share! A whole chicken will last me about a week – shredded into tacos or stir-frys, stirred into soups, a balanced way to complete a salad, etc. You can find me many a weekend gnawing on a leg like a shameless prize-eater because 1. I love chicken and 2. I have no one to impress at my breakfast table. Continue reading
Do you ever wish you could come home after a long day and dinner would magically appear and be waiting for you? Let’s make that dream a reality. Introducing…the slow cooker. I grew up with a CrockPot, so that is how I’ll reference it, but the idea is the same. Prepare ingredients beforehand, set it before you go to work, and come home to magic, without risk of burning your house down. I feel like many people associate slow cooker meals with winter, but I find mine most useful in the summer when my non-air conditioned kitchen is already sweltering in the sub-tropical Japanese summer.
Yesterday I wrote about sustainable meat choices. I am not a huge red meat eater, but I’ve found that if bison is in the equation, I’ll go back for seconds (or thirds!). I threw together this dish one morning before I dashed off for presentations and school speeches. My mom was at home so she was able to monitor the meat, but if you are making this recipe for the first time (or any CrockPot recipe), I recommend doing it on a day when you are home to check on it. Each slow cooker cooks differently, so it is good to get a time frame for your machine before you leave it alone all day while you’re off at work or running errands. After the first time, though, you will have a practically fool-proof way to set your self up for a healthy and frankly flippin’ delicious dinner.
The great thing about CrockPot recipes is that they can feed a crowd or keep well for leftovers. In fact, most things made in a CrockPot (can I abbreviate this somehow? CP??) taste better the next day. It’s also much harder to overcook, burn, or dry out meat in a slow cooker – great for those of you still gaining confidence in the kitchen.
My younger brothers both loved this dish – my twenty-year old brother gobbled about half of it and my ten-year old brother also really enjoyed it even though he doesn’t usually care much for meat. By the time I got home, the only thing that was left was this small serving, which is why I don’t have a picture of the whole dish. But this was such a hit that I’m sure we’ll be making it again, so I’ll have a chance to update the picture. This is best served with a hearty dose of mashed butternut squash or sweet potato, outdoors on your patio during a summer day. At least that is what I did.
Crockpot Bison Stew
A note about the onions. I just used up what I had found in my family’s pantry. If you don’t have pearl onions or shallots, just add another regular onion or whatever pleases you.
20 pearl onions
5 medium carrots, sliced in half moons
4 celery stalks, cut into 1 inch dice
1 1/2 large zucchini, sliced in half moons
5 garlic cloves, peeled
2 bay leaves
2 tsp Herbamare salt, divided
1 tsp thyme, divided
1/2 c chicken broth, optional
one 2 lb bison roast
Layer the onions, carrots, celery, and zucchini in the bottom of your Slow Cooker. Season with 1 tsp of Herbamare and 1/2 tsp of thyme. Add garlic cloves and bay leaves, then place the bison roast on top of everything. Season roast well with the other half of the salt and remaining thyme. Add chicken broth if you would like more of a stew, or leave it out for a more traditional roast.
Cook on low heat for 6 – 8 hours. We checked our roast after 6 hours and it was cooked through and pretty much melted into shreds when prodded with a fork. If the roast hasn’t reached that consistency after 6 hours, continue to cook until it shreds easily. You won’t have to worry about checking to see if it is done in the middle because there won’t be a middle anymore!
Feeds one hungry young man + 3 people with smaller to normal appetites. In regular serving sizes I would guess that to be sufficient for 6 people, especially if you serve with some sort of mashed squash.
Man. I just ate dinner, and I still really want to eat this. Happy crocking!
I wanted to write “A Stroke of Sleep Deprived Squash Genius”, but I thought that might get a little long.
International travel, my friends, is a terrifically wonderful thing. So often we can take for granted the fact that we can get in a giant metal bird and FLY. Honestly, whenever I get a little tired of a flight: dehydrated, headachey, full of airplane food – I remember that it is a miracle that I am even above the clouds at all.
However, I do believe that our bodies have not quite adapted to the wonder of zooming through dozens of time zones in a matter of hours. After a few weeks of here-and-back-again, I am craving the balance of a few goods nights sleep in a row. While I wait for that balance to come back in my sleep schedule, I’ve noticed how incredibly valuable it is to support jet lag and travel with proper nutrition.
A little over a month ago, I posted a list of 25 Things for Turning 25. It is a list of year-long and daily goals to improve my quality of life by helping others (and living out a few dreams). I had a fantastic birthday by sharing service with others, probably one of the best I have had ever. Here is a little run down…
3. Take a walk and pick up litter at least once a month. (Twice a month is ideal)
4. Make a sweet potato and chestnut layer cake, dairy-free cream cheese frosting optional. Achieved! It wasn’t a true cake with flours, etc, but it was the perfect breakfast. See details at the end of this post.
8. Reverse trick or treat
12. Laugh every day. Check
We also visited a friend in the hospital and had a mini party there. At lunch, my friends wanted to treat me, so I put the cost of my lunch into the donation box for the Japan Disaster Relief Fund. I sent out several care packages this month, as well as postcards. I’m going to start sending my mail with a Smile Card so people will pass it on. And I still need your help with these!
1. Get 25 people to make a $25 kiva loan, or more!
Kiva.org is a way to lend directly, in small amounts or microloans, to alleviate poverty while knowing that your contribution really makes a difference.You make a loan, get updates from your lend-ee, and then get paid back! You can make more loans with that money or do a communal loan.
7. Inspire others to send more snail mail.
A handwritten note speaks volumes from the heart. And they usually have really cute stamps at the post office.
14. Inspire 100 people to do better by the environment
Here is where I really need your help – spread the word! Recycle! Choose sustainable seafood! Conserve on water! Eat more greens! Share your thoughts on how we can integrate sustainable living and joy into our every day lives.
Oh! And I did do #17, Eat breakfast at Tsukiji fish market, the week before my birthday. Check! Sorry no pictures though. I was too busy eating.
I’m still working on the others, especially the daily tasks like getting rid of clutter and complimenting a person or laughing every day. And I WILL get in that hot air balloon sometime this year!!!
My birthday breakfast was slices of roasted sweet potatoes layered with my Sweet Potato Puddin’ Spread and topped with coconut cream. If you refrigerate a can of coconut milk (make sure it is BPA free!), you can scoop off the top layer of coconut fat and use it liked whipped cream! It was a wonderfully indulgent, yet healthy, way to start my day.
THANK YOU for reading and following, and here is to another year of joyful, green living!
Special thanks to Mayumi and Akane, who made my birthday extra special by participating in all the events! You guys are the sunshines in my life.
And HAPPY BIRTHDAY today to one of my dearest friends. Sig, you will always have a special place in my heart. ♥