Friday, September 30, 2011

Fresh Taste Friday ---Recipe #3--- It's A Party Slaw

This past Sunday, our family had what seemed like a pre-Thanksgiving gathering. :-) My uncle was in town and it stands to reason when I good amount of you're kin folk are in town, you gotta eat! But what about Racquel and I? Well, my mother prepared some cabbage and I got the bright idea to make a fresh slaw. Most everyone had some and enjoyed it )along with everything else they ate. Which goes to show you that raw food transcends the palettes and my uncle will eat just about anything once. However, he really liked this recipe as did the rest of the clan and here it is. Give it a try!

I call it It's A Party Slaw because it looks like confetti or streamers in a bowl. Here's how you make it. Put the mayonnaise away :-)

1/2 head of green cabbage
1/2 half head of red cabbage
4 carrots

1/3 cup apple cider vinegar
1.5 tsp ground mustard
1/2 cup olive oil
1/2 tablespoon agave nectar
Salt and pepper to taste

Take a vegetable peeler and peel the carrots. Discard the outter skin and continue to peel for a ribbon effect. Keep going until the carrot is pencil thin and you have a nice orange pile of ribbons. Cut your two types of cabbage in ribbon strips as well. A knife works just fine to achieve the same effect as the carrots.  In a separate bowl wisk together the vinegar, oil, and spices and then our it over your veggies. Toss and serve. You may find chilling it for a bit will cause the dressing to marry with the veggies and gives you a refreshing cold salad to go along side pretty much anything!

Enjoy and RAWk On!!!!


Wednesday, September 28, 2011

JoOce to Boost ----> Immune System Tune Up

Okay, we're already staring October square in the eyes and with autumn already here there are tons of critters and germs floating through the air. I spend my days off in the throws of daycare germs and I can already feel my body sponging up all the cold season ugliness. No reason the fret though. All it takes is some planning, a little patience, some diligence, and well, a juicer of course. Here, I'll explain what I do to get ready for a big juice feast, how I prep every day's "meals", the recipes for this month's juice feast, and a little bonus or two. So here we go....

To begin with, I can already tell that JoOcing for health has become a bit of an addiction for me and my sister. We had a family gathering this past Sunday and with all of the food that was around we looked at each other and said, "It's time to fast again." Even with the little bit that we did eat (huge salads, fresh cole slaw (recipe will be shared Friday for Fresh Taste and black beans) we felt like we'd over indulged. I think it was because we were watching everyone else eat like they were going to the electric chair, but I digress.

So, it's time to fast again and I can see this being a monthly routine to reboot my digestive and immune system. This month, I plan to fast for at least seven days (I could go a little longer) on Lemon Ginger Blasts and Carrot-Apple Juice.

I prefer to make all of my juices at once. Early in the morning. This way if I have to run to work, or run errands or am in the middle of something around the house, I don't have to stop when I'm hungry to lug out the juicer. I clean it once and I don't see it again until the next morning. If you wish to save yourself even more time, do some of the prep the night before (as far as some of the chopping). Personally, it doesn't really take that long for me to wash and cut my produce so I just save it all for the morning. It's all about preference and scheduling.

I try to make at least three quarts of juice and I store them in mason jars (as I've previously explained). The reason being, mason jars are durable, inexpensive, and they seal tightly which prevents premature spoilage and enzyme leakage. Enzymes are whole other blog so let's keep going :-)

The Menu:

I wasn't too fond of the lemon ginger blast when I made it for myself on my last juice feast but my sister made it one weekend and it was very tasty. I've altered it to suit my taste buds and you can do the same. My only advice is if your a novice, don't do too much mixing. Keep your juices simple to avoid overwhelming your taste buds and your system. If you've been surviving on processed foods for a significant period of time, you will get sick on more complex juice recipes. Stick to no more than a few ingredients. This way, you go into cleansing slowly and you remember what you put in juice so that you can make it again.

Here's the recipe:

2 lemons
3 inches of ginger
1 bunch of spearmint
1 bunch of basil
1 bag of kale or spinach
2 celery stalks
4 persian cucumbers or 1 regular cucumber
2 apples (I like Pink Lady or Granny Smith)
1 habonero pepper

*recipe for one quart of juice

Another one of my favorite juices that I made my "go-to" during my first round of detox was the Carrot-Apple juice. Apple juice alone is very sweet and the carrots maintain the sweetness while cutting the overwhelming flavor of fresh apple juice.

Here's the recipe

1 lemon
4 apples
1 inch ginger
8-10 carrots

*recipe for one quart of juice

This round of fasting we'd like to bring YOU along for the ride! All it takes is a little bit of will and some discipline! Visit us here or on our Facebook page (GoddessNectar/RAWk the JoOce) or follow us on Twitter @GoddessNectar!

Have a Wonderful Wednesday and Keep JoOcing!


Friday, September 23, 2011

FRESH TASTE FRIDAY --#2--Welcome to Autumn Smoothie

This is my "Welcome to Autumn Smoothie" this is sweet potato pie in a glass.  It has such an awesome earthy flavor.....and is so delicious. 

1 sweet potato medium size
2 inches fresh ginger root
1tsp fresh Cinnamon
1 tsp Nutmeg (because I love it)
1 tsp Fresh Vanilla
1 tsp Agave Nectar
1 cup Coconut or Almond milk
Directions:: most smoothie or juice recipes just allow you to throw everything in but since we are using raw sweet potatoes it is best to add the almond milk then potatoes and use the puree button on your blender until it is a smooth consistency then add other ingredients and use your liquify button and enjoy....I sure am!!!!

Keep JoOcing,


FRESH TASTE FRIDAY --#1-- Pink Lady Ginger Crisp

It's the first day of autumn and I couldn't think of a better way to bring in the cooler weather with this refreshing juice recipe.....

I'm not sure if I'm alone here, but nothing feels cozier to me than something with cinnamon in it. Of course, apples and cinnamon are always paired together and we can't ignore all of the gallons of "fresh" apple cider that has been coating our grocery store shelves for the last few weeks or so.

I can't go too many days without fresh juice and I came up with an AWESOME recipe for a fresh beverage that you can serve to friends and family for fall parties or simply to enjoy when ever you have a sweet drink craving. I'm definitely serving it this Thanksgiving!

*Ingredients for a quart of juice

6 large pink lady apples (my favorite and they are awesome in September)
3 inches of ginger (peeled)
1 Lemon (peeled)

--->Before preparing the juice, I added a splash of nutmeg and about a teaspoon of cinnamon to the empty mason jar

Pass the lemon through the juicer first, then the ginger, then the apples. (For a larger batch just double, triple, or quadruple the amounts listed above). Once you have your quart of juice, pour it into the jar (over the spices), shake to blend the spices and chill for a bit (maybe 30 minutes) and enjoy!

I like it more as a cold refreshing drink but you can leave it out and let it stay warm for a more soothing, warming drink.

Keep JoOcing,

Ashley :-)

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Updates ---> Ashley's RAWSOME Journey

It's been a month and I'm learning so much every day as this journey progresses and my energy levels change along with my body and complexion.

Let's see.... where do I begin? Well, this isn't the first time that I've gone on a raw foods journey but this is the first time that I realized that there was such a huge revolution surrounding such an avant garde lifestyle. Avant-garde because our society is Burger Brainwashed. Anyway, now that I have all of these online resources, social networking sites JUST for raw foodists, and YouTube videos it makes the journey even more fun. And I can't forget how awesome it is to have a roadie in my sister, Racquel. The last few weeks have been amazing. I've never slept so good! I get a lot of comments about "The Glow." Apparently my complexion is changing and people that see me on a regular basis seem to have noticed almost immediately. I feel my body changing. My energy levels are through the roof. My dance team literally had me participate in a cartwheel contest after class last Tuesday for Pete's sake! ehem! Yes, I won! I feel amazing all of the time.

I take that back. I feel amazing when I eat the appropriate amount. And last week I mentioned how much that is (2,500 to 3,000 calories). As we know fruits and vegetables are nutrient dense and not calorie dense. Your body has to be given an abundance and variety of food so that you get all of the calories needed to successfully lose weight and detox sufficiently. The more you eat the more you crave. I guess that's with anything you eat. Trader Joe's black grapes are like my new fix and I crave them all the time! Which is probably why yesterday I sat at my desk and ate a poud of them without even thinking about it. When I ate boat-loads of candy that's all I wanted. No matter how much fruit I ate. I'm sure the more you eat burgers the more you want them. This is a lifestyle of abundance not deprivation. Which is a plus in its own right. However it gets tricky trying to cram in those calories.

Yesterday, I ate about five bananas for breakfast and a pound of grapes. For lunch, I had two apple-pears (which I don't really care too much for). Then I came across a snag! I had to get to my second job and the only things that were left in my cooler were two bananas, a plum, and a banana! I knew those calories would be gone within the first few hours of my shift and I'd be starving by the time the clock struck 10. This is why it's important to eat all you can. Who wouldn't want to eat all you wanted?

Right now, I'm practicing the 80/10/10 LFRV lifestyle (low-fat-raw-vegan). 80 percent fruits and veg, 10 percent protein, and 10 percent fat (nuts, seeds, and avocados). So far, I love it and will keep you all posted as to how things are progressing! Until next time.....

Keep JoOcing,


Thursday, September 15, 2011

Banana Rama!

Everyday we learn something new about the lifestyle we've chosen to embark upon for optimal health. One thing that's hard to swallow (in a literal sense) is how much we literally have to eat because of how quickly our bodies process our raw diets. The average American that's chosen to go on a diet will usually restrict their calories to 1,500 calories or even less keeping in mind they are consuming an abundance of protein which the body isn't supposed to process in large quantities. Why? Rule of thumb - An infant surviving on mother's milk takes in about 7 percent protein. The rest of the components of the milk are the more imperative nutrients the baby needs to grow properly. 7%!!!! That's all of the protein that's in the milk and look at how quickly that baby grows. Also, when we consume large amounts of protein, we feel sluggish.

Since Racquel and I have adopted a high carbohydrate low fat raw vegan lifestyle, our bodies metabolize these natural foods much faster than we would if we ate a New York strip and eggs for breakfast.

Okay, now to my point. Because of the way our bodies rev up when we eat, we have to consume twice as much as what the average dieting woman would consume. You guessed it! Between 2,500 and 3,000 calories A DAY! I'm kind of starting to miss juicing. It's much easier to drink those calories. At least that's how it sounds. It takes a little creativity and eating enormous meals doesn't feel the same as over indulging on animal protein. Last night for dinner, I ate a very large salad and a pound of grapes and didn't have to sit and wait for my food to digest to run around with my dog for an hour or so. It's a completely different digestion process in the body. The body can use those calories more efficiently because their nutrient dense and clean calories.

About a week or so ago, I found one of my newest favorite raw foodies on YouTube (Megan Elizabeth - Easy To Be Raw) and she made this thing called a banana whip. So I had one for breakfast this morning. I call it Banana Rama. Here's the recipe:

4 super ripe bananas (frozen overnight)**
Cinnamon (to taste)
4 dates (be sure to remove the stones/pits)
About a half cup of water (depending on the blender and mine needs replacing :-) )
A few raw cashews for topping (or any nut of your choice)
A bowl and a spoon
**You can add as many bananas as you want. I only had four that were turning brown and the brown ones are the best to use because the sugars have concentrated so much. I prefer the yellow bananas for eating straight away. (Images below)

I started with one frozen banana a splash of warm water and all of the dates and I let them all whip up until it was chunky. Then I tossed in another banana with a little more water (about a tablespoon at a time). After the third banana I sprinkled in some cinnamon, added the last banana and poured it all in a bowl. You can also put the mixture back in the freezer to firm it up a bit. When you're ready to eat, sprinkle with some raw nuts and ENJOY!

 This is a super sweet breakfast but it packs an energy punch as well. It's enzyme and micronutrient rich so your body is going to love you for it. Our cells run on glucose so this will definitely get you going much quicker than a cup of coffee! Have a great Thursday!

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

All Puffed Up ---> Pro-Inflammatory Foods

What does it mean to be comforted? It means to be soothed, to be consoled, or reassure; bring cheer to.  I don’t know about you but when I use to eat what they call “comfort foods” I felt all of the above (especially brought to cheer).  I thought  I was so happy.  I want a good juicy a.k.a  greasy cheeseburger with “Raw” onions, cheddar cheese, maybe some apple wood bacon, on a hard sesame bun, fresh cut fries with a kosher dill pickle on the side.  Or I want a pizza, or I want a NY bagel, with the homemade cream cheese.  How about this one I didn’t have time to make breakfast so I’m going to grab a doughnut because the “HOT LIGHT” is on.  All of these foods that we love, and are comforted by are HIGH PRO-INFLAMMATORY FOODS AND THEY ARE TO BE AVOIDED.  People say it’s no fun watching a football game eating veggies, or drinking a smoothie, or raw juice.   Give me some hot wings, sliders, ribs, popcorn, chips, beer, soda…..THE WORKS!!!! PRO-INFLAMMATORY AND SHOULD BE AVOIDED.   Inflammatory foods contain negative properties, which help to accelerate the aging process or otherwise cause damage.  You ever say to yourself, “I am only 35 why can’t I bend my knees without feeling excruciating pain” or “when my mother was my age she looked younger than me, what is wrong?”  someone that is a diabetic is not going to (most times) try to stop eating these high inflammatory foods, nor are their doctor’s going to fully tell them that, because they want to get that money.  A doctor’s job is for you to keep eating that food, and I will prescribe you meds to treat the disease, but it won’t HEAL THE DISEASE.  So what good is the medicine? No I am not saying stop taking the medicine, but what I am saying is STOP EATING THE INFLAMMATORY FOODS! Stay far away from pro-inflammatory foods.  One reason is to consider doing so is that: if it contains flour, and/or sugar or other sweetener, it will be pro-inflammatory.  Sugary, starchy foods are poor choices and will not only pack on excess pounds, they will make you look older than your years.  Here are a few:
Breads, rolls, baked goods
Cereals (except old fashioned oatmeal)
Corn bread, corn muffins
Corn syrup
EGG ROLLS (my favorite)
All Fast Food
French Fries
Fruit Juice (hey, eat the fruit instead)
Fried foods
Hot dogs
Ice cream, frozen yogurt, Italian ices
James, jellies and preserves
Pita Bread
Snack Foods, including: potato chips, pretzels, corn chips, rice and corn cakes, etc.
I am not saying not to ever have a day of indulgence RAWk the JoOce Family, I am just saying that we need to use a lot of moderation.  We should not eat like it’s a holiday every day.  Reward yourself to splurge, but even in splurging don’t overdo it.  For instance find alternative snacks that will get you over the hump.  It is time we all start making life changes, so many people between the ages 14 and 40 are dropping dead.  Let’s change the course of our life and make healthy decisions by choosing good things to put into our bodies.
RAWk the JoOce,

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Sweet Staples ----> What's in Ashley's Pantry

Good morning, all! 

Before Racquel and I did the reboot, I had a borderline severe chewy candy addiction. I'd literally get a paralyzing hankering for some Swedish Fish or some Brach's Maple Nut Goodies, Skittles, or the my absolute (then) favorite Air Heads Taffy. And because these candies are vegan, I thought I was doing a good thing for myself. During my weeks of not consuming food, my body conditioned itself to crave healthy things. My main thought while I fasted was, "Man, I'd give anything to eat an apple rather than drink an apple." Now that I've begun the raw food part of my journey I've discovered a few amazing candy substitutes that deserve to be on a rack in the checkout line for the inevitable impulse buy! :-) (Clockwise) My first new favorite sweet treat is Trader Joe's Nothing But Bananas Flattened. One package yields roughly six servings and is $1.29 a pop! With only one ingredient these things have become my pantry staple. I mainly like them for breakfast with some all natural peanut butter, and sprinkled with some slivered almonds. All they are are about six bananas flattened into a kind of fruit roll-up of sorts. No pun intended. No sugar added. Bananas are the only ingredient! Next, I discovered Larabars years ago when I went on a raw foods journey in college and have loved them ever since. In spite of my food flaws, I would always find my way back to these. They come in a myriad of flavors but my new favorite is Peanut Butter and Jelly. It's simply peanuts, cherries, dates, and salt. THAT'S IT! And it tastes just like a a PB&J wrapped in a convenient little package. These range in price and calories. From 210 to 220 calories (but wholesome and sustainable calories) and $1.17 to $1.59. Another Trader Joe's favorite of mine is the Organic 100% Natural Fruit Wraps at 49 cents a pop you can't go wrong with tossing a few in your bag for an impromptu sweet snack. 50 calories a pop and just sweet enough. About seven all natural ingredients in this one and you can pronounce them ALL! Lastly, I discovered dates and rolled in coconut at my Holy Grail Whole Foods Market. OMG! Talk about saving the best for last. I loathe coconut but somehow paired with dates it works and hits the sweet spot EVERY TIME! A little more pricey at $6.99 a pound in the bulk section of the market, I think it's worth it and you can't go wrong with only two ingredients. Give one of my new Sweet Staples a try and post what you think on our wall. We love your feedback!

Don't forget to like us on Facebook @GoddessNectar or to follow us on Twitter @NapturalChic for updates and recipes or right here on our blog!