We are a family who loves to travel, and our most recent epic road trip took us to Michigan. But, travel can wreak havoc on anyone’s best attempts to eat healthy. Not always. Check out my post below where I show how we traveled across the country while (almost exclusively) staying on our Real Food Foodie Lifestyle (i.e., we ate really healthy in spite of being on the road). It meant extra work, which isn’t always the thing you want to do after a day of being in the car, but I’m simply not willing to eat crap food which is most often what’s served in restaurants.
I never thought of pesto as herbal medicine, but indeed it is.
Pesto has earned a spot in my diet (and my freezer), fairly regularly as a result. I mean, think of it, it’s chock-full of herbs. Herbs are medicine. Pesto = Powerful Herbal Medicine.
The thing about pesto, for me at least, is that I don’t relish the making of it. I have to lug out my food processor and wash lots of herbs (I like to keep them varied for optimal nutrition). The other issue is that sometimes you don’t want a lot of pesto… you want just a little. Well, that’s not a problem when you’re smart and make pesto ahead of time.
When you realize you want (or need) some pesto, it’s great to have it on hand. It requires thawing, but I find that I usually know if I’ll need pesto a day in advance so I put it in the fridge to thaw overnight. I like to make a good sized batch and freeze it in jars of different sizes as shown in the pictures. I especially like these baby food storage jars because the amount frozen is perfect for adding a little of pesto flavor to any dish where you want herbal flare but not a pesto-heavy result.
When I go to the farmers’ market, I see what lovely fresh herbs the farmer has, and I buy a lot. I go home and get to making some pesto straight away so I can be done with it. It feels good to have a freezer stocked of different things that can quickly be thawed for food. If you haven’t seen my post on Real Food Fast Food, please check it out. I share lots of ways to make really fast meals that qualify as Real Food (healthy stuff).
Pesto goes wonderfully served over a grass-fed steak, grass-fed burgers (I buy from Alderspring), pasture-raised chicken (I buy from Good Earth Farms), wild-caught salmon (I buy from Vital Choice). It’s also delectable slathered over some fermented organic sourdough bread, drizzled over mochi, dumped on top of gluten-free pasta, and stirred into organic goat cheese for the best goat cheese ever. You can also add a spoonful of it to the next dressing you make. Holy moly, you’ll be licking the bowl and begging for more salad when you do.
See? Many ways to enjoy pesto, when you have it on hand. Don’t forget…
Pesto = Powerful Herbal Medicine.
Pesto is pretty easy to make even if it’s not my favorite thing to do. However, I am not going to give you much of a pesto recipe because it’s so forgiving. You only need fresh herbs and a couple of other ingredients. I list many herbs below and you can use one or a combination of many. I also prefer hemp seeds instead of other nuts because they’re nice and small, soft, and offer some better nutrition than many other nuts.
- Fresh Organic Herbs: basil, oregano, dill, thyme, cilantro, parsley, rosemary, mint, dandelion, arugula
- sea salt (to taste, but don’t be shy)
- a few pressed cloves of garlic (more if you’re Italian) I love the Joseph Rocker Garlic Crusher
- 1/2 to 1-cup hemp seeds
- hard raw cheese like parmesan (if vegan, omit the cheese and add extra hemp seeds)
- 1/2 to 1-cup quality organic raw olive oil (or a mix of olive oil and Upgraded MCT oil for a brain boost)
Place the herbs in a food processor, like this one I have, fitted with the “S” blade, along with sea salt, garlic, hemp seeds, and cheese. Pulse it a bit until it’s nicely chopped. Turn on the food processor and add the olive oil in a steady stream until it’s incorporated. Set some aside to eat, if desired. Transfer the rest into glass storage cups of different sizes to be frozen. Be sure to label them with “Pesto” and the date.
Here is a refreshing chia pudding recipe for the summer that can be enjoyed as a snack, dessert, or as an easy breakfast (make it the night before to enjoy the following morning). I pulled it from my Raw Vegan Transitions book and changed it up a bit to suit my preferences these days. Mainly, I swapped out the agave nectar for raw honey. (To keep it vegan, simply use agave nectar or maple syrup in place of the honey.)
How did I make that delicious looking, creamy, raw vegan nut milk? I’ll tell ya! It’s Pili Hemp Nut Milk and my new go-to for nut milk. It’s fantastic for many reasons:
Creamy! The pili nuts… They damn near melt in your mouth when you eat them on their own. Heck, blend them and wowza.
- Easy! This is because no soaking (or straining) required! Hemp seeds and pili nuts are naturally soft and blend easily. What a time saver. And when it comes to hemp seeds, stock up. I operate under the philosophy of “go big or go home” and I buy in bulk. They are versatile and soooo healthy.
- Delightful Flavor! Pili nuts have a fairly neutral flavor which is great for plant strong milks, raw vegan cheeses, dips, and even raw vegan cheesecakes! (They are amazing in cheesecakes for both flavor and texture because they firm up when cold – I digress though. This is a nut milk post after all.) Hemp seeds, on the other hand, can be a little strong in flavor, but they’re huge on nutrition (essential fatty acids and a complete protein), so I try to continuously have them in my life. By blending the softly flavored pili nuts with the extra nutritious hemp seeds, you get a mild raw vegan nut milk that is perfect for use in any situation needing milk. I will say, though, that pili nuts rightly boast some excellent nutrition. They’re extremely high in their oil content (great as a beautifying food, as well as high amounts vitamin E and magnesium).
Pili Hemp Nut Milk
Yield 1 quart
Blend everything until smooth and creamy. Enjoy served by itself, in a smoothie, protein shake, raw soup, or on top of your cereal.
- Homemade raw organic almond milk
- Hemp Seeds
- Frozen organic blueberries
- Sun Warrior chocolate protein powder
And, here’s a peak at our current snack bar bowl (she also loves playing with them… taking them out and putting them back into the bowl). She’s especially fond of the Boku bars and she knaws on Go Raw bars like they’re teething biscuits. Although she only eats a few bites at a time, I love sharing my healthy snack bars with her.
Here are some other favorite Kamea foods: apple, guacamole, sauerkraut, red and orange bell peppers, smoothies and shakes, nut butter, sprouted whole grain bread, hemp seeds, blueberries (she can pack these away like there’s no tomorrow!), hummus, coconut milk, grapes, raw onion bread, black beans, chickpeas, and quite frankly, whatever we’re eating she’s game to try.
What are your baby’s favorite foods?
I just threw together a delicious combo of ingredients that basically make up a trail mix… all vegan, all organic, part raw. I couldn’t decide on a name because the mixture seemed ideal for serving at a party, as dessert, during a movie, or on the trail. So, I put those all in the name. I like making things in BIG batches so I only have to do it once in a while. No amounts given, I didn’t measure… that makes it part of the fun! Here are the ingredients…
Party Dessert Movie Trail Mix
By Kristen Suzanne of KristensRaw.com
Yield approximately 2 quarts
Hemp Seeds (raw)
Chocolate Chips (not raw)
Cacao Nibs (raw)
Goji Berries (raw)
Pecans, soaked, dehydrated, and chopped (raw)
Almonds, soaked, dehydrated, and chopped (raw)
Dried Coconut, unsweetened (raw)
Granola (not raw, I bought it at the store in the cereal section although you could easily put raw granola in this, perhaps Kookie Karma’s Goji Lime Coconut would be fun or Go Raw’s Chocolate or Kaia Foods Cocoa Bliss)
Himalayan crystal salt
Cinnamon [Read more…] about Party Dessert Movie Trail Mix