Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Raw Key Lime Pie

I found this recipe in a book of mine awhile ago and finally got around to making it.  It is very, very tasty and super satisfying. Plus, no need to bake anything!

Raw Key Lime Pie
lightly adapted from Matthew Kenney's book, "Everyday Raw"

2 1/4 c. cashews (soaked for at least 8 hours, rinsed, and dehydrated at least 24 hours)
2 Tbs maple syrup
1 Tbs coconut oil
2 medjool dates, pitted and soaked for 15 minutes or until soft
large pinch sea salt

3 c. cashews (soaked for 8 hours and rinsed)
1 c. freshly pressed key lime juice
3/4 c. maple syrup
3/4 c. coconut oil, melted
1 tsp vanilla powder or 4 vanilla beans, scraped
1/4 tsp sea salt
1 Tbs key lime zest

Crust Instructions:
Pulse dates in food processor until the consistency of paste.  Add remaining ingredients to food processor and  blend until smooth.  This dough will have a crumb-like appearance.  Pour crust dough into a 9 inch pie pan and press into place.  Dehydrate for at least 8 hours at 115 degrees to give the crust a "cooked", crunchy texture. This last step isn't necessary--it's just for added texture.  If you are not dehydrating the crust, refrigerate until you are ready to pour in the filling.

Filling Instructions:
Blend all ingredients in food processor until very smooth.  Pour filling into pie crust and refrigerate overnight or until the filling has set.


New skeins!

I decided it was too complicated to uphold two blogs, so from now on, my craft-related stuff will be on this blog, too.

I've been pretty busy lately, not to mention my right joint in my shoulder is giving me trouble from knitting too much, so I haven't got a lot of finished objects to show off.  However, spinning hasn't been giving my arm any trouble, so I've been doing a lot of it!

Here are a couple of little tidbits:
 Yak, merino wool, and silk skein. Single ply.
 Wensleydale wool, double ply. 

Must keep spinning... 

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Chicken Livers

I found out a way to get liver into my diet.  It may not be the healthiest way, but I can eat it this way without a problem.  Michael and I decided to treat ourselves to a newer restaurant called Grove in Grand Rapids.  The food is prepared with creativity and sustainability in mind, and oh boy, was it ever good!

So.  The liver.

Anyway, a while back, I tried cooking beef liver.  It was horrible.  I fed my plateful to the dog, and he liked it.  I couldn't stand the flavor or the texture.  I really want to like liver though, and that makes me a perfect candidate for truly enjoying it someday hopefully soon. I thought that if I tried some liver that was "properly" prepared (aka made by someone who had made it before...) I might actually like it--and guess what. I was right! The chicken livers we had were lightly breaded and fried, and just slightly pink in the middle.  They were perfect.  They were much more mild in flavor compared to the beef liver, and definitely better prepared than what I had made (mine were WAY overcooked...I learned that liver should not be cooked more than  medium or medium-rare! ...and my beef liver was definitely well done).

All that being said, I think now I can order a couple of pounds of chicken livers from Creswick Farms with confidence and know that I'll actually enjoy eating them.  I see chicken liver pate in my near future...

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Tomato Seedlings

Grandpa's early tomato seedlings were nearly an inch high on Christmas eve. Now, mine are about an inch high and I am getting excited for spring!
Happy Saturday, y'all.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Healing my Gut

Warning:  If you don't like reading about guts and stuff, please "x" out of this page!

I am taking a course through a friend of mine who happens to be a naturopath-in-training.  She is not only very easy to talk to, but she is also very, very knowledgeable about herbs and holistic healing.  This program has been very eye-opening to me.  For one, I've learned that if you're not eliminating at least 2-3 times a day, you are what is considered as constipated.  Of course, I am a part of that group, and this indicates that I have some healing to do when it comes to my gut.  Constipation can be caused by a number of things, but the two most likely cases for Americans is blockages and an overly twisted colon.  Blockages can be caused by all sorts of things:  not enough fiber in the diet, too much fiber coupled with not enough water intake, mucus and scars covering up inflamed areas, etc. The overly twisted colon is caused from blockages "re-routing" the waste.  It is important to be eliminating regularly, because if the waste continues to sit in your colon, all of the toxins that were removed from the food you ate will be reabsorbed through the intestinal lining and not only will potentially make you sick, but also will probably weaken the permeability of the wall, thus letting more and more toxins into your bloodstream later on. 


I have these problems.  My gut is inflamed.  I have blockages.  There is only one thing to do:  HEAL! 

Along with adding more leafy green vegetables into my diet for the fiber and nutrition that they provide,  I am also taking a bowel rejuvenator formula for "[normalizing] bowel function, whether the problem is constipation or diarrhea, which is an indication of more advanced constipation". (Sharan, 1996)

The herbs in this formula are as follows:
Cascara Sagrada - laxative, antispasmodic, antibacterial, liver stimulant, bitter tonic.
Ginger root - analgesic, anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, antiemetic, antispasmodic, stimulant, digestive.
Golden seal - antibiotic, antibacterial, antiviral, antifungal, tonic, astringent, diuretic, laxative, bitter.
Slippery Elm - anti-inflammatory, mucilaginous, diuretic, expectorant, astringent, nutrient
Turkey Rhubarb - astringent, antimicrobial, antibacterial, antibiotic, antiviral, anti-inflammatory, tonic.

All of these amazing herbs work together to improve, tone, and make your gut healthy again.  They are different from taking prescription drugs or OTC drugs to relieve constipation, because they actually work to heal, not just eliminate the problem for a short time.

Here's to healing!

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Herbal Giveaway!

For those of you who are interested in making your own homemade, non-toxic cleaning formulas, well, there is an awesome giveaway going on over at the Mountain Rose Herbs blog.  I highly suggest you sign up, because there are a lot of cool things in the giveaway package -- things like essential oils, hydrosols, a book on natural cleaning solutions, etc.  ...and, if you're feeling inclined to purchase a little thing or two for yourself in terms of herbs, spices, etc., please check out their website.  They have amazing prices on hard to find herbs, and are very reliable for quality.  I buy all of my powdered herbs through them, and I just recently purchased some herb seeds as well.

What are you waiting for?! Go sign up!!!

Monday, January 2, 2012

Early Tomatoes

Today I am putting some of these tomato seeds in the ground.  It's an early variety, and that means if I get started right away, I'll have early tomatoes! Does it seem too early to be setting seed indoors for the late spring? Well, I am actually way behind--Grandpa's tomato seedlings are already two inches high!

Happy early planting!