I love cooking on the spot, where you take a look at what’s in the kitchen and throw things together. That’s what I did today when I made this Minted Mango Salad.
I recently bought a few potted herb plants so that I can always have fresh herbs whenever I need. I bought rosemary, basil, and mint. I saw the mint this morning and was drawn to it. It was breakfast time so maybe that was the attraction… something minty. I was also in the mood for the mango and avocado I had in the fridge.
Grapefruit-Jicama Salad w Avocado Dressing #Recipe
Summer is one of my favorite times to dive into fresh and bright salads so I can go about my day feeling light. This Grapefruit-Jicama Salad with Creamy Avocado is a delightful experience perfect for just that. Crisp jicama and celery along with juicy grapefruit and creamy avocado. Need I say more?
Tonight’s nourishing soup recipe is a real winner: Buttered Broccoli Soup. Greg said it might be his favorite one yet. He loved its vibrant color, super soft mouth feel, and the slightly-cheesy taste even though there’s no cheese in it. Kamea gobbled up all of hers, though she wanted to drop a raw organic chocolate covered cacao nib into each Elmo spoonful. Hey, who am I to stop that? Raw chocolate and broccoli? Maybe she’s on to something here.
Personally, I’m a fan of the recipe because it combines nutrients (namely: kelp’s and broccoli’s – plus butter’s fat soluble goodies) and flavors that pair synergistically (plus its great flavor and texture). It’s especially wonderful during the cold winter months.
Cook the broccoli in a large (and deep) sauté pan (I use this one), covered, over medium heat with a few tablespoons of water added to steam/sauté it (about 8-12 min should do it). I say “medium” heat because that is the level of heat I use/need for Le Creuset enameled cast iron cookware. Alternatively, feel free to simply steam it using a pot and steamer insert. Here’s my new steamer insert I love.
While the broccoli is cooking, warm the stock in a small saucepan.
Transfer the cooked broccoli to a high speed blender and add the stock and remaining ingredients. Blend until smooth, which is best accomplished with a high speed blender.
* If you don’t have the high vitamin butter oil (which I highly recommend for concentrated fat soluble nutrients), then add another tablespoon of grassfed butter. I like the high vitamin butter oil for the boost in vitamins it offers.
Bonus recipe… see that salad next to the soup? A-mazing. It’s become a staple salad for us. Super easy to throw together on a whim. Here’s what I did…
1 avocado, pitted, peeled and diced
1 cucumber, diced
1 bell pepper, seeded and diced
juice of a lemon or lime
1/2 bunch of cilantro, chopped
1 to 3 pinches of sea salt, to taste
sprinkling of Farmhouse Kraut’s Smoked Jalapeno Kraut (optional, available at Whole Foods)
Toss everything in a bowl and let it set for a half hour or so (covered), if possible. Otherwise just toss and serve. By waiting though, the salt works its magic on the ingredients and enhances the experience.
Here’s another delicious recipe to be shared by raw vegans and paleo peeps alike… a salad :)
This Simply Vinaigrette dressing is a staple recipe in our house, because I always have fresh lemons and raw olive oil on hand (high quality raw organic olive oil, of course). It’s perfect for gently cooked vegetables like broccoli, cauliflower, or bok choy. Today, I’m showing it off here as a fresh, healthy, and easy salad dressing.
Quick delicious lunches are my kind of thing when my schedule is full or I’m just too tired to be extravagant.
Here’s a lunch I tossed together for Kamea (my 3-year old) that definitely pleased her taste buds. This made two servings, which I had planned on giving Kamea the second serving for her lunch the following day. However, I woke up and found that Greg had eaten it in the middle of the night. He said it was awesome, so all is forgiven. ;)
I love salads. But, while I’m all for a traditional salad with organic romaine lettuce, veggies, and raw macadamia nut oil dressing… I’m also a fan of chunky-n-creamy salads. You know the kind… Waldorf Salads and the like. I’m a texture gal. Problem is that those usually require some sort of mayonnaise and to be honest, I’m not really into soy or processed-icky-oil type mayonnaises that you buy in the store. No. I like to make my own mayo-type goodness that’s fresh and healthy.
And, I like to make them quickly.
And, I don’t always want them made from nuts.
I know, seems like I’m picky. Yeah, sometimes I am.
Well. :) I have two awesome vegan mayo recipes that really take no time to make if the goods are on hand. But, in all fairness, although I call them mayo recipes, truthfully, they’re not really mayo recipes. But, they serve to replace the mayo in a mayo-loving-salad. Make sense?
Unique Vegan Mayo Recipe #1
Avocado + Mustard + Lemon = Creamy and tangy goodness that is easy to mash into your salad yielding a mayo-like experience. Here’s what I do. I get a big mixing bowl and put my salad ingredients in it.. usually chopped veggies and non-sweet fruits like carrots, celery, red bell pepper, cucumber, and the like – raw sauerkraut makes for a great addition. Add a diced avocado, a couple big dollops of organic mustard (my favorite here), and a squeeze of fresh citrus such as lemon, lime, and/or orange. Mash/Mix it all up. No nuts needed. No soaking needed. Just easy peasy n dreamy n creamy. (Obviously, season with salt and pepper as desired.)
Unique Vegan Mayo Recipe #2
Sweet Potato + Mustard = Creamy and low fat deliciousness that adds velvety mayo-like texture, vibrant color, and nutrition like it’s no one’s business. The clincher here, however, is having 1-2 cooked sweet potatoes on hand in your fridge already. If you’re like me, this is a common item in your fridge (read more here). Okay, so same drill as above… Get a big bowl out and add your favorite salad veggies and foods. Put 1 to 2 peeled (cooked and cooled) sweet potatoes on top, add a couple dollops of mustard, and smish smash it up. Season as desired. When I made the salad and served it to Greg, he came out of his office exclaiming (unsolicited, I might add), “Wow, this is a 10 out of 10!”
All in all, these two options are great healthy replacements for the next time you need mayo in your salad. They add creaminess, nutrition, and flavor which is really what you’re after. Pro-Tip… (good quality) mustard makes everything better.
Here’s a great recipe for the brave hearted. It’s got some mega kickin’ heat and it’s super duper delicious! (If you must, you can tone down the heat by omitting the habanero or using only a bit of it, same goes for the cayenne pepper). This recipe is great for romaine salads, veggie salads, zucchini or kelp pasta, and I recently used it over cabbage for an awesome slaw. I’ll bet it’d be fun dehydrated on kale for spicy kale chips.
You’ll see that I use cashews in the recipe instead of olive oil which my original recipe calls for… not only was I out of olive oil, but thought it’s a great way to share how you can swap them in some recipes. This recipe, and many other super raw salad and dressings, can be found in my book, Easy Raw Vegan Salads & Dressings. Enjoy :) (Updated food journal post below video)
Food Journal 2/26/12 (Mostly Raw)
Spicy Veggie Juice: romaine, parsnip, brussel sprouts, dill, basil, celery, carrots, beet, spicy purple radish sprouts, zucchini, cucumbers, red bell pepper, kale, dandelion root, and habanero pepper! Whew! This bowl made about a gallon of juice with our Norwalk Juicer.
Pint green juice …. 3 cups green smoothie (water, apple, sunflower sprouts) …. Tea
Kale salad …. Sandwich …. Tea
2 brazil nuts …. Raw choc mint pie
Nettles blend tea (this stuff is super great for helping allergies… interesting story... my allergies have been non existent this season so far, but Greg’s and mom’s have been pretty bad. I just counted my lucky stars. However, I had a sandwich as you see above and it had two slices of bread, hummus, and tempeh on it. Although the rest of my diet is still basically raw, that was the first meal I had where something was cooked in it. Guess what? Within an hour my allergies kicked in and I was sneezing. I wonder if the stellar raw diet was keep them at bay? Anyway, nettles tea is great for helping them.)
Update 7/24/13: I’ve made this recipe into a 2.0 version that is paleo friendly.
Here it is! My 4-Ingredient Magic Dressing! I have been dressing my salads with this almost daily for about a month. It’s magical because it’ll make everyone love any salad you put in front of them if it’s dressed with this. My whole family goes crazy over it.
Get ready to really love salad.
4-Ingredient Magic Dressing 2.0 (Raw Vegan Paleo Gluten Free Soy Free) Recipe by Kristen Suzanne of KristensRaw.com
Yield 2/3 cup
Place the ingredients in a bowl or mug and mash it together with a fork. (Or blend it.)
Now, to make the perfect salad, put all of the salad ingredients in one big bowl. Pour the dressing on top and then toss the salad until the dressing coats it all. I usually use this one recipe to cover a salad that serves two really big portions. The salad we’ve been making the most with this is: romaine lettuce (my favorite), orange, raisins, red bell pepper, cucumber, and sprouts. (Carrot and tomato sometimes make an appearance, too.)
* I have made this with fresh lime juice, lemon juice, and apple cider vinegar – all very delicious, but my favorite is the coconut vinegar.
Mmmm a day full of healthy, energizing, GREEN, nutrient dense, delicious, EASY, fun, texture filled, Raw, Vegan, Organic food!!!
Plant Blood (a.k.a. Green Juice) – 2 cups
celery, kale, cucumber, cabbage, and lemon
Green Smoothie – 3 cups
1 mango (are those a doozy to cut up, or what? with that pit and all you have to cut around!), fresh cut sunflower sprouts, fresh cut pea sprouts, and 1 frozen banana
Tropical Spicy Protein Smoothie – 3 cups
1.5 cups water, 2 frozen bananas, 1/2 cup mango (or more), 1/4 cup hemp seeds, 1/4 cup hemp protein powder, 1/8 teaspoon cayenne, dash vanilla extract
LOTS of Salad!
I’m crazy for romaine salads lately… like I eat 3 bowls in a row! Must be the Monkey growing in me, eh? The usual easy, simple combo: romaine, cucumber, red bell pepper, and topped with a dressing of lemon juice, raw olive oil, Himalayan crystal salt, and black pepper.
Dinner is not here yet, but here is my plan! Kale Salad and Crunchy Buckwheat Biscuits
Marinated kale salad topped with avocado, cucumber, red bell pepper. Crunchy Buckwheat Biscuits have a wonderful cheesy flavor (I use nutritional yeast – not raw, but everything else is). I dehydrated thoroughly where they’re a thick, crunchy biscuit. Yum! I will post the recipe soon!
Yum, I love prunes. Deliciously sweet and packed with antioxidants and nutrients.
Update: My kale salad at dinner was a bit different from what I posted above, and let me tell you… We LOVED it! My husband said three times, “Wow! This is soooo good!” I’ll post the exact recipe another day, but the ingredients were marinated kale, garlic, avocado, pineapple, and orange. I’m calling it Pineapple Orange Kale Salad.
I’m officially experiencing some morning sickness. There hasn’t been any puking yet, just an intense nausea that lasts for most of the day. And… I’m happy as hell with it! I Love it! It might sound weird to some, but with all of the hoops I’ve been through to get pregnant, I take morning sickness as a great sign (between blood tests) that I’m still very pregnant. Yeehaw!! Wednesday is my next blood test. I’ll be glad when those are over.
Even though no foods really sound good to me (yet, I’m hungry. It’s bizarre and fun), I’m keeping up with my High Raw to All Raw meals. Sometimes Raw sounds good and sometimes cooked vegan does (Chipotle vegan burrito always sounds good – lol), BUT, I’m keeping it All Raw for some meals, High Raw some, a scant few meals that are moderate Raw, and saying NO to Chipotle. *Everything that passes my lips is organic.
I’ve been eating a lot of big salads. I was recently sent some living, fermented, vegan salad dressings to try by the company Zukay Live Foods. They’re very good(!) and I recommend having a bottle or two in your refrigerator for those times you don’t feel like making dressing. They contain probiotic cultures with no added sugars, canola, or gums. I think they’re all fat free. You can add the dressing by itself to salad or mix it with a drizzle of olive oil. I’ve used them in a few ways and they’re all great. I’ve had it on salad. I’ve had it on my cucumber pasta meals. And, I’ve even added a tablespoon to my green juice to add fun flavor. There are many ways to use these for an extra flavor-punch in your recipes.
I’ve been spending time relaxing in my mom’s backyard under the warm sun, listening to wind chimes, and humming to the little life growing inside of me. I wrote a lullaby for my baby before we conceived and I sang it to the little spirit that was not yet in me, and I continue to do so now that he/she is. Did you see the movie Australia? (If not, it’s such an amazing, epic, beautiful story.) Anyway, in the movie, the little boy “sings his ‘adoptive mom’ to him.” He says, “Mrs. Boss (that’s what he calls her), I sing you to me.” I always liked that, so I said to myself over the summer, I’m going to sing my baby to me. I also read that in some tribes, the woman goes off on her own for a walk before getting pregnant, and a lullaby comes to her spirit. She then goes back to her husband and teaches it to him. They sing it together until they conceive and when the baby is born, that is the baby’s special lullaby. I thought that was so beautiful.
I started creating my play list for the birth day and I’ve been extremely attracted to Deva Premal’s magical music. It feels so right. I can see our home birth happening with that playing in the background. I might mix in some Earth, Wind, and Fire (lol) because I do believe I have a disco Monkey growing in me.