Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Freaky Fruit and Other Things

When shopping at the markets on Friday I saw this banana and I HAD to buy it. I wasn't planning to get bananas, but how could I not, really? I bought it home and showed mum, I was soooo excited, and she just said "oh yeah. I've seen some like that before." Let down! But I didn't really care, I was still impressed. I hope you are too. :-)

This is something I made up for lunch on Saturday, I will post the recipe on my other blog soon, it is a corn blended salad/dip and it was really simple and yummy. Perhaps not the most photogenic thing in the world...

Dinner saturday night was Onion Bahjis with Mango Chutney from Shazzie's 'Detox Your World.' Beside the onion bahji recipe she wrote "serve this with cauliflower florets and mango chutney for a taste sensation." I figured it sounded Indian so I thought I'd make some pumpkin 'pasta' with my veggie spiraliser, and top with cauliflower, onion bahjis and mango chutney. But I forgot to buy cauliflower so I used broccoli instead... it was AMAZING! DELICIOUS! TOTAL TASTE SENSATION! Honestly, if you have what you need, try these recipes right now. My dad tried some and he thought it was good too (this is mr omni, keep in mind!)

Saturday, October 28, 2006

Raw Picnic #4

Sorry for the sporadic posting - I have only two weeks until my end of semester exams start and I have had lots of assignments due recently so I've been extremely busy. I can't believe that I have almost completed my first year of university! AHHH! Anyway, last Sunday was my fourth raw picnic and it was soooooo GREAT! The last ones have been loads of fun with their 'intimacy' (ie, four people present, lol!) but this one was huge - about 15 people turned out! (OKay so maybe not HUGE but certainly big compared to the last ones, lol!)
There was so much food that its hard to remember it all but I'll tell you a few things - you can figure out the rest from the photos. I bet you're already drooling!

This is one of my contributions, which was really funny actually - I had lots of hazelnut pulp in the freezer left over from making nut mylk and I also had a load of slightly bruised apples that were ageing quickly so I just threw the non bruised sections in the food processor with the nut pulp and some other things and here was the result. I didn't even taste it before dehydrating! Yet I got heaps of comments about how nice everyone thought they were. There is a apple-cinnamon loaf and 'chocolate' apples biscuits around the edge - I will post the (approximate) recipe on my other blog soon.

Okay here is one of those amazing raw things that would make a non-raw person collapse and roll on the floor in shock and delight at how amazing and not-raw it tastes! I mean, can you really believe that cake is raw? Now, I was never a big chocolate person before and after 2 1/2 years of veganism I have pretty much forgotten what chocolate even tastes like (although I have to admit to being a big carob fan :-) but the choccie topping on this cake really was unbelievable. YUMMM! I only had a tiny piece because anymore would have been overpoweringly sweet, but it was good!
In the corner of the picture is my second contribution, my Tropical Chocolate Ice-Cream Pie, the recipe for which can be found on my other blog (link in the sidebar). Unfortunately, this one didn't turn out anywhere near as nice as the first time I made it but other people who tried it seemed to like it, so it wasn't a total failure.

Other things present
-big plate of yummy fruit including pineapple, kiwi fruit and strawberries
-black sapote pudding (ohhh soooooooo good, I think I ate more of this than anything else, it was incredible)
-plate of really raw cashews, goji berries and prunes
-avocado and sprout salad (this was nice, especially the sprouts cos I looove them, but it was waaaaaay too spicy for me)
-flax crackers (darn, they were all gone before I got one)
-another plate of fruit including kiwi fruit and orange segments
-another bowl of fruit, just strawberries
-a few plates of random chopped veggies including carrot, zucchini, avocado, tomato and snow peas
-a salad of corn, pineapple, tomato, avocado and maybe something else?
-a yummy pudding of strawberries, mango, banana and possibly several other ingredients
-chocolate crackles! Did anyone else eat these as a kid or are they an australian thing? They were extremely unhealthy but this healthy raw version was totally delicious and REALLY tasted scarily like the horrible cooked ones, only living, vibrant and delightful! I only had one (again, not a huge fan of really sweet things) but it was very good!

SO that's it - all the yummy picnic food. Hope you enjoyed the pictures as much as i enjoyed my day! I got to meet some amazing raw people, catch up with a few from past picnics and I also met two raw kids and a raw pregnant lady - lots of great chats with like-minded people!

Saturday, October 21, 2006

Yummy food using my new toy!
Because I now live 4 hours by plane away from my entire family except my parents, rather than getting lots of birthday presents I have received lots of money in the post, and last week I went and spent some of it to buy a veggie spiraliser, which you can see by clicking:
It is SOOO cool! Now, it took a bit of getting used to and my first attempt at raw pasta was using butternut pumkpin, which wasn't a good start because it is one of the harder veggies to spiralise but zucchini becomes beautiful angel hair pasta in seconds!

Here is Butternut Noodles with Golden Curry Sauce from Shazzie's 'Detox Your World' and it was DELICIOUS! Really, the sauce was sooooo good, I ate piles of it. If you have this book, make this recipe right now! EVen if you don't have a spiraliser to make the pasta, make the sauce and eat it rolled up in a big lettuce or cabbage leaf, or maybe on it's own like soup, or you could add some orange juice and make it thinner to use as a salad dressing... whatever you can think of to eat it!

This is an Alfredo-style sauce I made up for lunch the other day with zucchini noodles - it had avocado, basil, lemon juice, tomatoes and some other things I can't remember. It didn't turn out that well but combined with the noodles it was great!

Lastly is dinner from tonight, which is zucchini and carrot noodles with Walnut Pesto (using a couple of pecans cos I ran out of walnuts!) from a book called 'Hooked on Raw' by Rhio, which I have on loan from the library (I have to return it on monday but I don't want to :-(
I played around with the pesto a fair bit and it was nice but not great - the noodles were awesome, of course!


Thursday, October 19, 2006

I'm 18 today! Yay! I have had a wonderful day - my presents from my parents were an avocado slicer, nut cracker, stainless steel citrus juicer, GORGEOUS necklace, worm farm (yay - no more throwing away loads of food scraps!) and... Juliano's RAW: The UNCookBook (if you've been reading my blog for a while you will know I LOVE this book). A very wonderful lot of presents.
But these were not my main presents. As you may know, I moved across the country with my parents at the beginning of this year to study at university, leaving behind all my family and friends. Last weekend, my parents flew one of my best friends over from Adelaide (where we used to live) so I could see her for my birthday. It was a huge, wonderful surprise and we had a wonderful weekend catching up together. In addition to this I threw a spontaneous raw birthday party on Saturday and that is what you see above - a salsa, a guacamole and dessert of Strawberry Romanoff (from Juliano's book). Here is a close up of the salsa:

I kinda made both this and the guac up as I went and they were delish! My best friend Alycia and my Dad loved everything (my mum couldn't eat any of it, sadly, because of her terrible food allergies).
I must rush off but I'll post again soon!

Sunday, October 15, 2006

So many salads, so little time!

Hello everyone, sorry it's been such a long time. I'm officially returning to regular blogging as of now! Thankyou soooo much to everyone who left comments after my last post about the tragic passing of my beautiful girl Spirit, I truly appreciate them in all my heart.

Now, onto food! A lot of my recent posts have featured photos of salads. All in the same bowl. Basically, all pretty similar looking. I'm really quite sorry about that, because I'm sure without being able to taste the huge variety of flavour explosions present in these many different salads, they all seem the same and boring. Let me tell you, they're not. When I was just a vegan, I didn't really like salads. That was because I, like most people, had never had a really good salad. I can't define the word salad for you, I don't even think I can narrow down what a good salad is, beyond DELICIOUS!! But anyway, enough raving. The first salad you see pictured above is Pretty Papaya from Shazzie's Detox Delights. I wanted to make this salad for AGES and couldn't get all the ingredients - I finally found organic rocket (I think this is also called arugula) and then gave up and bought conventional chives. Now, after all that salad raving, this wasn't a REALLY delicious salad. It was very nice and I will make it again but no rocket thank you! Next time I will use baby spinach instead. As Shazzie says in the book "sweet fruits like papaya (paw paw) are such a nice surprise in a salad" and she is quite right, plus it went really well with carrot and the chives were a scrummy addition. I've heard that rocket is an acquired taste, and I have to agree!

Here we have another Shazzie recipe, this one from Detox Your World, simply called The Greatest Salad in the World (I love the names she gives her dishes!) Now, I wouldn't say it was the best salad in the world but only because that is really unfair to all the other salads. As I said, there is so much diversity and it is so hard to even specifically define what a salad is, that you really can't go around comparing them this way. But suffice to say this was a REALLY, REALLY, REALLY yummy salad. I ate it for lunch on Tuesday and was sorely tempted to make it again and take it with me to uni on Wednesday but I resisted, simply because there are so many other salads out there to try!
Have a great day everyone and thanks for stopping by!

Saturday, October 07, 2006

Bits and Pieces

Hello, sorry it's been a few days - I've been rather busy and today was not easy for me - to understand why, read this post that I put on the Raw Pleasure boards (see link on sidebar)earlier:

Today is a sad day in my life, and I feel the need to share with someone, so who better than this wonderful community of likeminded people?

Some of you may have read about, two weeks ago, my post regarding raw pets, in which I mentioned my beautiful rat, Spirit, who is nearly two and has been a vegan (though not raw) for her whole life. She was always in outstanding health and I really felt that she would far outlive the 'normal' predicted lifespan for domesticated rats, which ranges from 18 months to 2 1/2 years. Unfortunately, I was wrong. Since that post she has suffered possibly the most rapid and unexpected health decline I've every witnessed (and I've seen a lot of sick animals) and this morning, tragically, she was put to sleep. One day, with no warning, she began having difficulty walking and blancing, because she couldn't use the left side of her body properly. I suspected a stroke although she wasn't showing the other signs - the vet agreed that this was not the cause and gave two possible diagnoses - an inner ear infection (affecting her sense of balance, and thus causing the trouble with walking) or a tumour on the pituitary gland (which is in the brain, for anyone who doesn't know). This is quite a common problin domesticated rats - it sickens me that wild animals do not suffer these horrendous dis-eases yet we have now introduced them to our poor domesticated ones to the extent that they are 'common.' Spirit was put on three different medications for a week - I felt horrible giving them to her, like I was only making things worse (especially with everything I've been reading about natural hygiene lately) but I couldn't bear to see her suffering. I was feeding her about 80% raw and giving greens (like the best of us, she loves a good gs!) and hoped this would also help. She displayed some improvement, but it did not last. On tuesday I got more drugs for her, anti-inflammatories and anti-biotics (as we still didn't know whether it was an infection or tumour) but Thursday she looked quite bad and yesterday she was terrible. I took her to the vet this morning, not knowing if anything more could be done - the vet said we could hospitalise her and treat intensively but that may only buy a few days - when she was suffering, what on earth is the point? So, I made the heartbreaking decision to end the life of one of my very best friends. If you have never lived with a rat you may struggle to understand - most people probably don't understand the level on which I connect with animals, I find them so much easier to understand and deal with than people. Spirit was incredibly important to me and I will miss her so much but I do not feel hollow and lke she has left a void in my heart - instead, I am full of the beautiful memories of the times we have shared. I don't understand why this happened - I cared for her so well and she was always in perfect health - but it has happened and there is no point dwelling on the 'why' of something I will never know.

Now, to move on from such sad things to what I'm sure you really wanted to seem which is ... FOOD! For lunch today I had a totally scrummilicious salad which I found on the Raw Pleasure website (I just about live there! :-) and altered just a little - it contained chinese cabbage, carrot, celery, corn, cherry tomatoes, avocado, strawberries, and a squeeze of orange juice over the top. It was soooooo good, you should really try it. The strawberries were a really nice addition. Aren't the colours stunning?!

Dinner tonight was from Shazzie's 'Detox Delights,' it was Double Stuffed Tomatoes and came out really well. The proportions were a bit off, I fiddled around with amounts but used the basic ingredients, sans olives and with a few pumpkinn seeds replacing some of the sunflower seeds. Once I'd stuffed my big tomato and still had LOTS of filling mix leftover I added a little tahini too it, food processed up some more and then made a lovely stack with dehydrated eggplant 'chips,' and carrot and celery sticks for dipping, which was really delish (I had more celery and carrot, just didn't put it in the picture :-) Another successful Shazzie meal!
Have a good night everyone!

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Quick Foodie Post

Okay this must be brief but I thought I'd share two Shazzie recipes that I've eaten recently. First of all is Saturday night's dinner - my first recipe from 'Detox Your World' (great book - lots of information plus heaps of delish-looking recipes). It is Herby Stir-Fry and it was REALLY yummy - I made lots of changes but stuck to the basic idea, and it came out great. I loved the fact that it had peach in there, it was a really interesting and yummy flavour (yay for all the new season summer fruits - sorry to all you for whom winter is just beginning :-)
The only other change I would make next time is to either soak the sun-dried tomatoes before hand or leave them out - their very strong flavour didn't complement the peaches much. But all round, a success.

Here is Crunch Munch salad from 'Detox Delights' - simple, filling and delicious, what more could you want?
Have an awesome day everyone!