Breakfast: A green pudding, based on the Luscious Lime Pudding that Gena of Choosing Raw recently highlighted in her latest book review post, of an Ataulfo mango (infinitely tastier than plain old regular mangoes), 1/2 an avocado, 2 tbsp chia seeds gelled together in a 1/4 cup of water, 1/2 tsp lime zest, 1 tbsp lime juice, 1/2 tsp spirulina, a handful of spinach, and about 1/3 cup almond milk kefir, topped with millet puffs and a sprinkling of raw cacao nibs.
Less silky smooth than suggested by its name, the pudding held a rather overly limey flavor that marred the mango’s musty sweetness, and wouldn’t blend without the addition of extra liquid in the form of almond milk kefir, not called for in the original recipe (I suspect that I can claim responsibility for the latter flaw thanks to my inclusion of spinach, but who can blame me for imparting green leafy goodness to every breakfast?). Needless to say, this particular breakfast left me a bit underwhelmed, though still amply nourished.
Breakfast Checklist: Protein—almond milk kefir. Whole Grain—millet puffs. Fruit—mango, avocado, lime. Leafy Green—spinach. “Super Food”—chia seeds, spirulina, cacao nibs.
Local Ingredients: Spinach from Harmony Valley Farm.
An intriguing and rejuvenating blend of organic green rooibos tea, holy basil, licorice, indian sarsaparilla, maca root, acerola berry extract, and natural orange and vanilla flavor, this tea *supposedly* helps the body adapt to the physical stress of exercise, increases endurance, and keeps the endocrine system balanced before and after workouts. Frankly, I chose this tea based on its unique combination of surprisingly comforting flavors, not its
phony purported health benefits. Nonetheless, a little placebo effect never harmed anyone.
Lunch: A heaping salad bowl full of mixed greens, three types of sprouts (alfalfa, buckwheat, and mixed bean), cherry tomatoes, a fun little knobbly carrot, and a mix of marinated goodies from the Whole Foods olive bar including giant white beans, artichoke hearts, roasted red peppers, and garlic-stuffed green olives, all dusted with dulse flakes and accompanied by a brown rice cake.
Confession: the utter succulence of the Whole Foods olive bar causes my knees to shake in anticipation of marinated scrumptiousness. Honestly, I can barely contain myself when my mother returns home from grocery shopping or yoga with a medley of tantalizing roasted veggies and olives bathed in olive oil—the container usually disappears within seven minutes of her entering the door. Somehow, I managed today to restrain the marinated veggie fiend in me until lunch time, allowing myself to verily enjoy the goodies in a delectable salad. Ahh, savory bliss.
Meal Checklist: Protein—giant white beans. Whole Grain—brown rice cake. Vegetables—alfalfa sprouts, buckwheat sprouts, mixed bean sprouts, artichoke hearts, red peppers, garlic, olives, tomatoes, carrots. Leafy Greens—mixed greens, dulse seaweed.
Local Ingredients: Mixed greens from Jones Valley Farm, alfalfa sprouts and bean sprouts from Troy Gardens, buckwheat sprouts from Garden to Be, cherry tomatoes from Canopy Gardens, carrots from JenEhr Family Farm.
After-Lunch Beverage: A tall glass of NessAlla Kombucha in Peach Blush flavor.
Afternoon Snack: A slice of raw Strawberry Cream Pie with Chocolate-Almond Crust from Addicted to Veggies.
Perhaps a bit overly enthusiastic about the strawberry crop this year, I purchased six pints of the edible rubies from the farmers market last Saturday, all of which I froze to use during the fresh-strawberry-less summer and winter months. However, with a recipe like Sarafae’s wagging mouthwateringly in my face, how could I resist prematurely tapping my berry stores? Following the original recipe exactly, this pie turned out absolutely spectacularly (as expected with any raw dessert, frankly). The dates almost dominated the strawberry flavor, but thankfully it still managed to shine through for a berrylicious (yes, I said it), wonderfully creamy filling. I also couldn’t stop scraping bits of crust off the side of the pie—its salty nuttiness with a hint of cacao proved truly satisfying. HUGE YUM.
Local Ingredients: Strawberries from Driftless Organics.
Dinner: Two Classic Veggie Burger patties from Sunday Morning Banana Pancakes, topped with Raw Ketchup from Choosing Raw, served over a simple salad of mixed greens, cucumbers, and sugar snap peas tossed in Liquid Gold Dressing.
These veggie burgers certainly merit their title, for they have become the meatless patties to which I will compare all others. Super hearty thanks to the ample amount of nuts and rolled oats, the burgers held a mysterious yet familiar umami flavor thanks to the mushrooms and a subtle sweetness from the dates. I also appreciated the inclusion of the leafy carrot tops in addition to the orange root—everything tastes better with greens!
Sadly, the ketchup did not fare as successfully. Overly acidic and under-ly thick with a strangely powerful hit of cinnamon, this ketchup did not satisfy my craving for a saucy burger topping. Eh well. You win some, you lose some—especially in experimental cooking!
Meal Checklist: Protein—walnuts, sunflower seeds. Whole Grain—GF rolled oats. Vegetables—cucumber, sugar snap peas, carrots, garlic, mushrooms, cherry tomatoes, sundried tomatoes. Leafy Greens—mixed greens, leafy carrot tops.
Local Ingredients: Mixed greens from Jones Valley Farm, cucumbers and cherry tomatoes from Canopy Gardens, sugar snap peas and carrots from JenEhr Family Farm, garlic from Brantmeier Family Farm, cremini mushrooms from Palm’s Mushroom Cellar.
Comment Provoking Questions: Have you tried Ataulfo mangoes? Have you sampled Republic of Tea’s new line of Wellness teas? Do marinated vegetables excite you as much they do for me? Do you freeze fresh produce to use over the winter? What’s your favorite homemade ketchup recipe?
Until next time, Ali.