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Pineapple Ginger Lemonade

8 May

 

If you loved the Strawberry Ginger Lemonade I posted a few days ago and you love pineapples, then this will be a hit at your house too! Puree in a high speed blender till smooth:

1 – 1 1/2 tspns grated ginger (we prefer more ginger for this compared to the strawberry version)

zest from 2 lemons

juice from 2 lemons

1/2 cup raw local honey or your choice of sweetener (we found that this drink usually requires a little more sugar than the 1/3 cup in the strawberry version)

2 cups fresh pineapple

3 cup water (or a mix of ice and water)

Slice some pineapples to garnish. Yummy! By the way, if you have some leftovers, these are great for popsicles too!

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Strawberry Ginger Lemonade

6 May

Strawberry Ginger Lemonade

We ate at a Vegan restaurant called Lamb’s Bread the other day and my boys went crazy over their Pineapple Ginger Lemonade. “Can you make it at home?!? You don’t have to juice it, you can make a fresh raw smoothie instead, but make it taste just like this!” Well, I noticed that the restaurant also had a Strawberry Ginger Lemonade. As we drove home, I remembered that the Blissful Chef had a similar recipe in her book but with mint instead of ginger. It should be easy. Well, the Blissful Chef has this exact recipe on her website! If you haven’t tried her other recipes yet, do! They are very family friendly and delicious!

For this recipe, I just substituted the limes with lemons, ginger juice with grated ginger and maple syrup with raw local honey. Adapted from the Blissful Chef, puree in a high speed blender til smooth:

1 – 1 1/2 tspns grated ginger

zest from 2 lemons

juice from 2 lemons

1/3 cup raw local honey (or your choice of sweetener)

1 pound fresh organic strawberries, tops removed and sliced in half (I have also tried it with mixed frozen berries)

3 cup water

Slice some strawberries to garnish. Yummy! By the way, we also used some leftover to make popsicles. Now to try it with pineapple next!

Creamy Plantain Green Smoothie

9 Apr

Plantain Bananas

Because they are in season all year round in the tropics, I grew up eating plantains fried or baked or boiled or steamed almost daily.  They were one of my fave foods.  I was told not to eat them raw, but I couldn’t resist trying one as it ripened on my kitchen counter one day a few years ago.  Now I love them RAW when they are all black, soft and super sweet.  Sometimes, I can’t wait and eat them when they are a little soft, but still quite yellow (like in the photo above).  For breakfast, I love them with a little raw almond butter and raw honey or with cayenne spices.  For lunch, I like to eat them plain with a huge salad to bulk up my meal when I am really hungry.  Sometimes, we love them in smoothies because they create really lovely creamy drinks.  For days when you are really hungry, these smoothies have a heavier creaminess than regular bananas.  Plantains are an excellent source of potassium, magnesium and vitamins B6 and C.

Today, my whole family enjoyed a Strawberry Plantain Green Smoothie.  For me, the fewer ingredients, the better.   I like keeping things simple.  I used to add dates when my family was transitioning to a more raw food diet, but we find dates in green smoothies too sweet now.  We prefer them a little plainer these days – so we can really taste the ingredients in the smoothie.  I also used to add only 4 cups of greens, but now we prefer 6 cups or more.  But feel free to experiment with other veggies and fruits and add your fave raw ingredients too like nuts and/seeds.  Here’s my basic recipe.

Blend all in a high speed blender:

2 really ripe, soft and black plantains, peeled

1 cup freshly squeezed orange juice

1 cup water

1 pint of strawberries or fruits in season

6 cups of greens, or more

I find it easier to add the greens to the blender first, so I can measure it to make sure I have at least more than 6 cups.

Then I add the strawberries.

Then I add the orange juice and water.

Then I add the plantains last.

Puree it all together for a creamy green smoothie.

Our Pirate’s Smoothie

8 Apr

Our Pirate's Smoothie

What’s better than seeing my family truly enjoy something I made from scratch in my own kitchen and with my own hands?  For me, it’s when they enjoy something that tastes like I slaved over it, but it actually only took a few minutes and consisted of only a few ingredients.  Not only does that mean I get to spend more time with my familybut I also have a fantastic recipe.  This is definitely a keeper. And guess what, you only need 3 ingredients: 1 ripe pineapple and 2 young coconuts!  How can you beat that!

Simply place the pineapple chunks, the coconut water and the coconut meat in a high speed blender and puree away.  This is heavenly especially after a day at the beach!

A Tip from a Raw Smoothie Dad: Decrease the Number of Steps to Making a Raw Smoothie!

9 Sep

Recently, a Super Raw Smoothie Dad, Allen Kachurowski, shared a big tip with me: DECREASE THE NUMBER OF STEPS TO MAKING A RAW SMOOTHIE!

He pointed out to me, “Speaking from experience, I think males are probably worse fruit and vegetable eaters than kids.  I know I was.  Through my own experience I have found that the only way that I was able to reliably make [raw green] smoothies a habit was to decrease the number of steps to making oneI pre-measure all the dry ingredients once a week and store them in baby food containers.  That way every morning I save time by not having to open each package individually. It’s kind of like those daily pill containers.  I find with the Spirulina powder this works really well and prevents spilling.  Just wanted to let you know that thanks to your blog we have now added Spirulina (never knew about it before), Kale and and sometimes Dates to our smoothie.  Made the basic green recipe today and really liked it.”

Allen's Containers

Here’s Allen’s daily mix:

– Flax Seeds
– Raw Wheat Germ
– Spirulina powder
– Juice Plus+complete powder

What a time saver!  I think I’m going to have to start portioning out my ingredients too!

Thank you Allen.  I think your tip will not only make it easier for Dads to make those Raw Smoothies, but busy Mamas too!

Top 12 Kid-Friendly Year-Round Raw Superfoods

7 Mar

After discussing the top 5 reasons to feed our children more raw vegan foods, I thought it would be good to list the most kid-friendly raw foods that are in-season all year round and/or available all year round.  It is best to find organic, local and in-season foods, but sometimes it is just not possible for many reasons (one being I have a monkey who loves bananas and we don’t grow bananas where we live).

So, here is a list of 12 superfoods that are full of, as my son says, “En-zines! En-zines!”

Hope your kids enjoy these living and enzyme rich foods!

FRESH FRUITS

1. bananas – all kids love bananas.  They are rich in enzymes, best eaten just ripe when there are brown spots on the skin.  Many kids are monkey bananas for them in

  • breakfast – cereals, granola, porridge, pudding
  • green smoothies – a must in any
  • ice cream – with the texture of real ice cream, you can add different ingredients to change its flavor
  • lollipops – name me a kid who doesn’t like them!

2. apples – sweet and crunchy!  Full of phyto-nutrients and anti-oxidants, what’s there not to love in

  • breakfast – in our favorite Raw Muesli and a yummy accompaniment to Almond Yogurt.
  • easy snacks – simply slice one up and serve with or without a dip, or create Apple Sandwiches
  • raw Applesauce
  • immune booster ‘tea’: mix together equal parts of apple cider vinegar and honey, add water to taste
  • veggie juices – to make it more palatable for kids. I know my son prefers apple green juices over carrot ones.

3. lemons – rich in raw vitamin C and bioflavanoids.  Enjoy in

  • salad dressings: 1 tbspn lemon juice, 2-4 tbspns extra virgin olive oil, 1 tsp sea salt, spices and herbs
  • raw lemonade

4. avocado – rich in protein, enzymes, fiber, potassium, vitamin E and healthy fats.  Avocados add a richness and creaminess in

  • dips – Guacamole
  • soups
  • a simple side – sliced with a little sea salt and extra virgin olive oil
  • desserts – creamy chocolate Sundae

5. papaya – loaded with living enzymes, papaya contains papain, a digestive enzyme which helps break down protein and soothes the stomach.  Enjoy in

FRESH VEGGIES

6. romaine lettuce – rich in vitamin A, vitamin K, folate, vitamin C, manganese, and chromium, it is also a very good source of dietary fiber.  It is the mildest of all leafy greens and the easiest for kids to learn to love.  Enjoy in

  • easy salads – Kid’s Only Salad and South Asian Salad
  • smoothies – in any smoothie, this is the easiest way to get kids to eat them
  • as wraps – simply place a banana in a leaf, topped with almond butter and honey or dates or nama shoyu, or other filling

SPROUTED GRAINS

7. sprouted oat groats: a good source of dietary fiber, significant amount of vitamin B1, potassium, iron, phosphorous, selenium, zinc, manganese and magnesium.  Enjoy in

RAW NUTS and SEEDS

8. almonds – higher in fiber than other nuts, contains healthy omega-9 oleic fatty acids, calcium, phosphorus and magnesium. Enjoy in

  • Almond Butter – use it instead of peanut butter on bananas with honey, or in lettuce wraps
  • Almond Orange Salad Dressing
  • Raw Almond Milk – soak 1 cup of almonds overnight, rinse and drain the next day, process in a high speed blender with 4 cups of water and your choices of sweetener (honey, dates, to taste) and flavor (cinnamon, vanilla, cardamom)
  • Raw Almond Yogurt

9. coconut – besides being anti-viral, anti-bacterial and anti-fungal (Coconut Research Center), coconuts are highly nutritious, rich in fiber (4x as much as oat bran and 2x as much as wheat bran or flaxseed meal), vitamins and minerals.  We have a tub of coconut oil in my son’s bathroom and he enjoys eating the butter as I lather moisturize his skin with it. Enjoy in

  • breakfast – granola
  • coconut oil – in desserts, pit a date and place a little coconut oil inside, close and enjoy
  • creamy milk – simply blend together fresh raw coconut water and meat from one coconut.
  • Pina Colada smoothie – blend together water and meat from 1 coconut, 1 banana, 1 cup pineapple, 1 tbspn honey.
  • soups – we love my Coconut Gazpacho, but you can make a simple Avocado Coconut Soup by blending 1 avocado and water and meat from 1 coconut and your choice of flavours (curry, vanilla, sea salt or honey)

10. sunflower seeds – excellent source of vitamin E, as well as vitamin B1, manganese, magnesium, copper, selenium, phosphorus, vitamin B5 and folate.  We enjoy this is our son’s fave salad

11. flax seeds – great source of omega-3 essential fatty acids, good source of dietary fiber, manganese, folate, vitamin B6, magnesium, phosphorus, copper and lignan phytonutrients.  Enjoy as

SWEETENER

12. raw local honey – not only will this help with seasonal allergies, but this is an unprocessed sweetener that kids just love.  Since finding out more about the negatives of agave syrup, honey is now our favorite liquid sweetener.  Enjoy in

  • breakfast
  • chocolate syrup with raw cacao or carob powder
  • desserts
  • toppings or dips for cut fruit

Berry Spirulina Smoothie

16 Feb

Berry Spirulina Smoothie

We love spirulina in smoothies.  This is one of my son’s favourites.  High in protein (50-70%) and vitamin B12, spirulina is also rich in essential fatty acids,  vitamins A, B1, B2, B3, B6, B9, C, D and E, and many minerals such as potassium.

Process in a high speed blender:

1 tbspn spirulina

2 dates, pitted

3 bananas

1 pint fresh organic strawberries (or blueberries)

1 cup water (more for blueberries)

Holiday Smoothies

30 Nov
Our favourites this season:


Pineapple Julius
Delicious! 
1/2 a pineapple, 2 cups freshly squeezed orange juice
Pink Smoothie
We were surprised at how yummy this was.  Strain for kids or the texture sensitive.
3 bananas, 3 pomegranates seeds, 1 cup water
Tastes Just Like Honey   
My son says this tastes just like honey.
3 bananas, 2 pears, 2 dates, 4 cups leafy greens, 2 cups water

Fresh Cantaloupe Smoothie

4 May
When I was growing up, one of my favourite drinks was cantaloupe melon milk.  I just loved it!  Melon milk was delicious.  But these days, we really love just plain pureed cantaloupe.  No added water or milk – just cut up the cantaloupe and puree in the blender.  Enjoy!
Resources:  
Besides an abundance of vitamin A and C, did you know cantaloupe has a lot more vitamin Bs than other fruits?  And they are best eaten alone or before other foods so that the body can digest them easily and quickly.  If combined with other foods, the body will have difficulty breaking it down, causing toxins in the system.

Raw Green Powder in Fruit Smoothies

11 Apr
Sometimes we need a break from our raw Green Smoothies.  So the next best thing for us is a Fruit Smoothie with some green powder.  The flavor is not overpowering and the color of the smoothie does not change – so our son and my husband easily consume these fruit smoothies when they are tired of seeing pure green drinks in their glasses. We use 2 types of powders.  One is Products for Life Multivitamin Formulas Perfect Food™ Raw.  It is raw green powder from greens, sprouts, vegetables, with chlorophyll, trace minerals, antioxidants, enzymes and probiotics.  The other is Barley Max, which is high in enzymes, essential amino acids, protein, vitamins A and E, folate, zinc, manganese and potassium. Note: we used to use another brand but it contained maltodextrin, which none of us agreed with.  So check your labels!

One of our favourite fruit smoothies is the old favourite Straw-Anna. Ours is raw of course. 

Puree in a Vita-Mix:
10 oz frozen organic strawberries
2 fresh organic bananas, peeled
1 – 1 1/2 cups water (depending on how thin/thick you want it)
1 – 2 tablespoons raw organic coconut butter/oil, like Artisana or Wilderness Family Naturals
1 tablespoons raw local honey
1 – 2 servings of any green powder

My husband and son love Acai drinks – but these are really ‘dead’.  When they crave their purple juice, I  try to make Cherry Smoothies and add some green powder instead.

Blend together:
2 cups organic frozen cherries
1 cup water
1 serving raw green powder