sublime concoctions

{September 30, 2009}   freaky banana

Ok, this is my best version of a milkshake that I could ever desire in life.

first of all- i learned a trick from Moosewood cooking books years ago I loved- freezing older bananas- i have stepped this up to freezing slightly under-ripe for me to lower the GI…but for a treat and for my kids- it makes a smoothie wonderful and you can create an ice cream with no added sugar or anything in a snap. So- assuming you have 4-5 older bananas frozen-(peeling them by running under hot water a few seconds- then peeling with a butter knife- i cut off the skin more than peel it) here is a worthy endeavor for a health tonic that is a desert…if you are not into raw milk or cant have it- i suggest using whole organic milk for this and for the kiddies special treat- otherwise, do coconut milk, lowfat, whatever…

4-5 froz bananas

two vanilla beans stripped down the middle and take off all the good stuff with a flat knife( sub van extract  to taste 1 tsp or 2 if desire)

1/4 tsp cinnamon

1/8 cardamom (opt)

1 cup of raw milk (more or less depending on consistency)

blend well in blender- adding milk little at time to keep it moving..

this should make about 4-5 servings….pour in a mug or glass and top with sprinkle of cinnamon


{September 30, 2009}   the sugar scam

My thoughts are on what we have been selling ourselves as nutritious food. As I make my kids breakfast- I imagine they are not eating typical for their peers. This morning, they had a piece of leftover cornbread and a berry-banana yogurt smoothie- no sweetener, save the frozen banana which acts nicely to make it yummy and smooth plus sweeten- my favorite trick for the kids smoothies. I am learning to avoid processed sugar- however it seems I have to be ever more vigilant on what I find acceptable.  The cornbread I made last night was a mix up of a recipe I love- but i used less than 1/4 cup of sugar ..the recipe called for 2/3 cup!  it was totally still on the sweet side and a touch of honey made it desert. Why do we sell things like granola bars as healthy alternatives to our kids when they are packed with unhealthy oils, and SUGAR out the wahzoo? DO NOT EVEN get me started on boxed sugar cereals and pop tarts…I think these companies should be ashamed of themselves shoving the commercials down our throats and telling people this is a nutritious breakfast. You ever try to have 3 kids on your heels at the store and they are all placed at the bottom shelves where the 2 yo who is GOING to FLIP OUT will- it is a fight I always win- but then i have to make it around every corner of the store and avoid candy and crap- not to mention the candy at the counters! (um- i lost that one a time or two with two year old tantrums from hell as you are checking out)…..I was raised without these colorful boxes and cartoon characters on my table, hardly ever pop or candy- and it might have been for economic reasons- but I am glad my upbringing set the tone- It is just sad- I mean how many kids are from families that do not put their energy into food like me and they are living off of this stuff first thing in the morning- and maybe even a pop out of the fridge or orange drink (which is full of vitamin c, so it must be good huh?) to wash it down- they go to school and have behavior problems diagnosed as ADHD or some shit like that? Maybe it is the sugar rush- a wheat  or food coloring allergy and then these kids have brain fog after their rush is over. I know when I was struggling through working full- time and surviving intense crisis as a parent- putting nutrition in place  would have been down the list if I was not geared that way- I might just take the word of the people talking saying- hey everyone is living like this – whats the harm? look at your grocery shelves!!! it is packed with sugar laden processed food meant to be quick and easy for people to not think for themselves…then as we grow up- everyone is down your throat to be thin and beautiful- so then we sell you on how you can fix yourself with other processed products…what a rat race!  I do buy these granola bars- i do get my kids doughnuts- i even will let them pick out a box of that crap if they want like once a year- but they always know it is JUNK FOOD> period-  and I am not selling myself on the notion it isnt anymore. I am going to get bulk snack mixes with nuts for protein and good fats and dried fruit like cherries with antioxidants and then they have something healthy- and a protein boost to make through their day.  I do think when i shop it is pretty funny- i am for sure not coming home with 75 percent of what i see in other peoples carts- and I have even more to learn for sure- but it makes me wonder how is that we are supporting this industry that our groceries stores are filled with crap we truly should avoid?  I am becoming vigilant and you look and sugar or high fructose corn syrup is in everything from ketchup to  meats to bread. I know this is old information to many peeps who are a health food junkie like me- but I wanted to acknowledge this process of stripping down the old habits and I am constantly bumping it up and being more aware and taking responsibility for reading these labels and not just assuming anything. One example is my boyfriend grabbed a loaf of bread I bought for the kids- he shook his finger at the high-fructose corn syrup on the list and I was pissed! I have been avoiding that ingredient for years now- this loaf of bread was from a company I have purchased from before- yet this one selection had the crap in it…sneaky and I got caught red-handed! LOL………..but i am for moderation and know my kids get junk along the way at school and events etc- this is why I feel it is important for it to be considered junk and not the accepted norm……..i have met the sugar radicals in the co-ops and mostly I think I prefer to be aware and have some place for junk…otherwise it becomes a challenge for the kids to find out what they are “missing”…However……i do think we parents need to stand up for our children and own what we support and i let my kids know it is a scam and they are not victims of that and they have the power to choose differently- and when the pop company comes to school for a fundraiser or wants to put a machine in the school- my kids hear how i think it is a horrible trick and they do not like being tricked! ::)…………well thats my rant on this subject for now.

{September 29, 2009}   the steel deal

Steel cut Oats-my boyfriends standard.  I soak  these overnight now and it is the easiest way to have them going in the morning. These are not processed oats and truly I have been converted to eating this oatmeal most only ever now. Low GI and very sustaining- add an egg or two to the side or a cup of yogurt and you are going to have an even keel blood sugar all morning. THE WORST we can do to ourselves in the morning is eat high carb sugary food- we spike our blood sugar- get a buzz- think that false energy is your answer?  it might be a fix, but you will crash and your whole day will be a series of fixing the problem.

1 cup of steel cut oats

31/2 cup water

throw this in your pan before you go to bed- leave covered overnight. bring to boil in the morning- drop down to low immediately before it boils over and let go for 15-20 min.

ADD INS- limitless options of course —

-my usual suspects:

Frozen berries right into the finished hot oats- stir preferred amount and it cools down the oats and thaws the berries.

Ground Flax

Agave Nectar

my personal requirement is Cinnamon- it is good for you and an easy way to sweeten naturally and give your immune system a helping hand.they are finding this spice has anti-viral/ anti-bacterial properties- i just knew it !

{September 29, 2009}   sweet thang

here is my simple beloved fantasy food

Greek Gods Greek style yogurt- honey flavored

fresh figs or fresh peaches

cinnamon all over the top

what else can i say- this is my first sweet addition to my post because this is heaven without any effort at all- this is THE  BOMB

{September 29, 2009}   Love Peppers

OK, welcome to my first food “concoction” contribution to my blog-

I am calling these my Love Peppers. I picked up some great peppers at the farmers market and had some lean ground beef – (yes 5 percent and natural ). Now I have never liked stuffed peppers- but i was inspired and so I looked up some recipes-and i see why i always hated them and never wanted to fix them. I DID not blanch them first- i did NOT boil them first- I had 2 poblanos, a big reddish green and made these peppers..easily could’ve made another whole pepper with the meat I had- i had left over wild rice mixture all ready cooked… are the ingredients for LOVE Peppers-

1 lb of lean ground beef..5 %

about 1 to 1.5 cups of cooked rice- brown or wild is best ( i like to have less grains)

1 onion, clove garlic 1, 2 to taste

2-3 cups raw spinach

2 jalapenos

1-2 tbls cumin or mexi seasoning

3- 4 whole peppers depending on size..halved or split for poblanos

1/4 cup of pine nuts, toasted or browned in skillet no oil

some gorgonzola cheese-  about 1/2 cup

can of fire roasted tomatoes diced (any added seasoning like basil or peppers would be good)

garnish – plain yogurt and salsa

ok, so brown your onions in some olive oil- just enough to coat the skillet- add your beef- brown it break it up as it cooks and add the cumin..i add a little water here – dice and toss in the garlic- let it go about 10 min simmering and then toss in your cooked rice, mix and check for salt- go light- add if needed, throw in your spinach to jalapenos  diced- and half of your pine nuts- half and seed your peppers- or split the poblano and stuff- line them in a baking pan oiled with olive oil- as you have them stuffed and lined top with cheese enough to give it a kick on top- sprinkle the remaining pine nuts on each one- and then use your can of tomatoes on top evenly and around your peppers- put in an oven @ 350 for about 25- 30 min.. maybe add a loose foil over if you want and pull it last 10 min…

these are righteous and not at all like the yucky things i have despised- i would totally do ALL poblano peppers next time and advise the smokiness they impart is such a flavor king……these are easy to adjust to your liking with cheeses and seasonings etc…i used what i had going on in the fridge- eat them with someone you love- spicy and healthy good for lots of heat..yet simple and low-brow too.

Served with roasted winter squashes-

and green romaine salad , fresh tomato, sliced garlic, olive oil, apple cider vinegar and pepper…..

{September 28, 2009}   facebook, blog newbie learning

Ok, so a new blog- i guess this is the point of blogs- I am setting up my blog site- so as i am learning how to organize my blog and publish my recipes etc- i am begging everyone who comes across my blog to be patient- as i have now hooked it into facebook and i have not figured this out completely-
and i love saying blog-haha-( i almost feel hip but know i am not since blogging has been around for a long time now..)

{September 28, 2009}   new blog

I am creating this blog to explore and express my relationship to food as an art- I see food as an art form , not just in style, texture and taste- but an art of nurturing and healing myself and my loved ones. I see this as a format to finally start sharing this on a larger scale with friends and family and finally start writing down the creations and recipes I form as I go. My style of cooking has always been pretty loose and somewhat chaotic- so, for instance, I will take my inspiration from a  recipe that seems interesting, like a platform- then I will change it up- use what I have in the house sometimes, or go by the seasons to replace certain things and usually the recipe gets turned on its head- sometimes, this works beautifully- sometimes this is a disaster- but it never usually happens more than one time because I never write anything down when I go. More and more I have come up with combinations that are from my own design completely-  or always a twist on an old favorite bumping it up with more courageous ingredients that have healing benefits. When I cook, I think of all the attributes of the spices, the grains, the vitamins in the fruits or veggies etc- I am learning more everyday and I know I get some of my best inspirations from people in my life and this is also why I want to do this blog. I do not see myself as a “foodie”- i see myself as a nurturer and an artist.  Always I am creating with a restraint – this will come out in how I shop and substitute and I am very resourceful- so this means I cannot always be a purist or have THE BEST RECIPES- it means- i have found a way to cook something good on a dime and I always always try to involve sustainability and principles over anything else involved such as top cuts of meat etc- i will have a recipe wrote up the best I can- but i was trained in “dump cooking” by my mom and grand mom and great grandma- this is why i make a lousy baker…:)……i do by feel and taste and i am in my zone- hope i can translate the ideas so someone can follow if they desire. ..but this is not a cookbook. I will be including new theories on food as a healing agent- supplements I try and also healing journeys as they come…. until next post- Rache

et cetera