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Sarah Lawrence

Eating Something Beautiful

The summer garden is a phenomenal source of inspiration.  Besides the gorgeous heirloom tomatoes, zukes, cukes, squash and herbs are a few major beauties that you might not consider putting on your plate. If you haven’t tried them already or didn’t know you could, I’d like to introduce you to the common daylily.  The plant I’m talking about is the one that grows in great clumps by rambling New England stone walls.  It’s the one that has clusters of creamy orange blooms atop tall stems.  We’re not talking Easter Lily or any other lily variety --- some are quite toxic.  If you’re not sure about the plant growing in your garden or in the wild, DON’T eat it.  But if you you’re your stuff and you want to try something new, read on!  Daylily flower buds and blooms are edible raw and are also lovely steamed or sautéed.  To prep them requires a check check for bugs, a pinch and a turn to remove the cluster of stamens/pistols from the center of the blossom and a moments pause to take in their beauty before you devour them!  Now, the stems and tubers are also edible, but we’re going to save those for another day because I’m not digging up these pretties while they’re putting on such a great show!  Honestly, I don't want you to go digging up your daylilies right now either... let them live... they won't mind you pinching a few buds and blossoms.  I think it's quite a tribute to their single day showcase to enjoy the beauty of the bloom and them use it to nourish your body. Much like squash blossoms, daylily blossoms kind of beg to be stuffed.  So whether you spoon a dollop of something sweet or savory into the center of the blossom and eat it like a popper, you won't be disappointed.  Talk about a stunning nibble for a party!  Now if you're not into the totally ladylike feat it takes to eat a popper you can opt for a fork friendly option by removing the petals and peppering a salad with the tender bites or take your cues from the Asian origins of the Daylily by steaming or sautéing the buds.  One thing is for sure:  You will elevate your meal by using this simple, stunning, surprisingly flavorful flower.  I really hope you'll post a note for me if you try these or are inspired by the idea!   Daylily Poppers [caption id="attachment_598" align="alignleft" width="300"]filled daylilies filled daylilies[/caption] Fresh picked daylily flowers, stamens removed 1 cup corn ½ cup cashews 3 stevia leaves or 1 date ¼ cup lemon juice ½ cup blueberries (optional add in) Put corn, cashews, stevia leaves, lemon juice and berries into Vitamix and blitz until smooth.  You can make the corn base first, remove a bit of that and then blend in the blueberries for a 2nd flavor profile.   Spoon about 1 tsp of the mixture into the cleaned hollow of the flower.  Top with a fresh berry. [caption id="attachment_599" align="alignright" width="300"]Daylily Poppers Daylily Poppers[/caption] To eat, fold the petals up like you’re closing a purse and pop the bite right in your mouth.  These are a beautiful appetizer or dessert.  The filling possibilities are just about endless.  Think about a no bake cheesecake filling, or a lemon mousse… instead of going the sweet route with the stevia, omit it and add ½ cup of chopped scallions or dill for a great onion cream cheese mixture.  Peppery mock tuna salad makes a lovely bite as well.    This light, colorful salad is an amazing way to nourish the body.  The basil and oregano really make the dish come alive.  All garden fresh or grown in the yard, takes about 1 minute to put together and it’s just vibrantly yum… in my book, it doesn’t get much better than this! Colorful Daylily SaladColorful Daylily Salad 1 or 2 kale leaves, minced a few leaves of basil, minced sprig oregano, leaves plucked off stem 2 daylilies, petals minced 2 small yellow cucumbers, diced 1 cup blueberries Toss all ingredients together and serve.

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Sarah Lawrence

No Bake Brownie Bites

[caption id="attachment_593" align="alignleft" width="300"]No bake brownie Bites No bake brownie Bites[/caption] It is a hot one in New England today.  Scorchers like today just don’t make me want to bake, but I’ve been itching to try a black bean brownie recipe that my friend Kerri created.  With the humidity though, not even a battalion of flying monkeys was going to make me turn on the oven!  So, a little blitzing with a batch of black beans and a few yummy raw staples and a nifty, no bake, nut free brownie bite was born.  My favorite bite was one I rolled with a few dried blueberries.  If you like an earthy flavor, go for the buckwheat.  Otherwise, try the GF oat flour for a mild canvas and a great bite of heart healthy oat fiber.  *nut free, gluten free, dairy free No Bake Brownie Bites 1 cup oat flour (choose gluten free if you need it) or 1 cup raw sprouted buckwheat flour * or a combination of both flours -- buckwheat is earthy, oat is neutral 12 medool dates, pitted, about 1 cup 1-2 droppers of liquid stevia or a few more dates to taste ¼-½ cup cacao powder 1 ½ cups black beans, unseasoned (drained and rinsed if from a can) ¼ cup water ¼ cup coconut oil Add ins of your choice – see end of recipe In your food processor, pulse the pitted dates a few times until they start to break down and get like a paste.  Add the black beans and process until smooth.  Add the remaining ingredients and pulse until you get a ball of dough.  You may need to add a bit more water or coconut oil depending on the moisture content of your beans and dates.  The consistency we’re going for is something like a stiff cookie dough or play dough. I like to line my small stone baking pan (8x6 or 8x8) with parchment paper, tip out the dough and press it firmly into the corners and then flat on the pan.  Fold the parchment over the mixture and refrigerate it so it firms up a bit more. Cut into ½ inch pieces.  Now you can get creative… you can roll the pieces into balls like truffles and swirl them around in cocoa or cacao powder, cinnamon, coconut, chopped nuts, matcha powder, powdered berries.  You can mix in dried fruit; dried blueberries and chopped dried cherries are my favorite.  You can leave the bites as squares and drizzle with chocolate sauce or spread with a thin layer of ganache.  Bottom line is that these are slightly sweet, fiber rich, heart healthy bites. *To make sprouted buckwheat flour start with raw buckwheat groats.  Soak them for about 2 hours, then rinse and drain.  Let the soaked groats sit in a sprouting bag or a glass container (lightly covered with a clean cloth) overnight.  Rinse the groats after 24 hours.  If they are sprouting, great… if not, let them sit another night.  Once the groats have nice sprout tails you can either set them on a baking sheet and let them dry before grinding them to flour or you can pop them in a dehydrator.  If you have a dehydrator, you’ll know what to do with it.  Otherwise, rinse the sprouts gently and drain them, then lay them on a baking sheet and let them dry out overnight.  You may need to stir them or flip them to help them dry evenly.  I used about 1 ½ cups of sprouted buckwheat groats to get my 1 cup of flour.  A clean coffee/spice grinder makes quick work of this job, but a food processor will work too. BONUS: My Daily Green --Red Cabbage, grapefruit and ginger Salad
  • thinly sliced red cabbage with grapefruit, pickled ginger and a splash of rice wine vinegar
  • a few handfuls of seasonal greens

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Sarah Lawrence

Fresh and Fabulous in 4 Minutes

Fresh, Fabulous Food in a Flash!  Start to finish on this meal is 4 minutes.  If you have a little extra time to let the mushrooms marinate, all the better… but you can SO do this in a pinch.  No excuses!  Need a fast, fresh and nutritious meal?  I invite you to give this a try! Mushrooms are like superheroes of nutrition.  Studies have shown that even 1 ordinary button mushroom a day can cut your risk of breast cancer by 64%!  SIXTY-FOUR percent!  Couple that mushroom with daily consumption of green tea and you increase the cancer fighting power to between 82% (post-menopausal) and 89% (pre-menopausal).  I say, let MUSHROOM MANIA begin tonight!    Raw marinated mushrooms are an amazing treat.  My first experience with them was trying Mimi Kirk’s recipe for Shitake Skewers in “Live Raw.”  Something magical happens when you marinate.  I think it’s the same magic that we dip into when we rub kale because rubbed, marinated kale is the thing that legends are made of!  In any case, marinating doesn’t have to take more than a few minutes, but if you have 30 minutes to let them sit they do become more flavorful and tender.     Everything you eat should contribute to your health.  Instead of fast food meals that make you feel gross and contribute to disease, choosing nutrient dense, plant strong fast food can do nothing but figure into the future of your health.  Here’s the lowdown on the other nutrient superstars in this meal: Cashews – rich in copper, magnesium, and phosphorus; support heart and bone health Hempseeds – rich in protein and omega 3 fatty acids. Onion – anti-inflammatory, anti-cancer, heart protective Cabbage – cholesterol lowering and cancer preventative Cucumber – anti-inflammatory, heart protective, rich in anti-oxidants Meals like this one come together in a flash in my kitchen.  Here’s how I do it:

1.       Grab glass pie plate and assemble marinade; pour, grate, stir.

2.      Toss pre-sliced mushrooms into the marinade; set aside or start warming.

3.      Slice cabbage/lettuce/bok choy and cucumber; drizzle all with vinegar 

4.      Blitz all ingredients for onion sauce in the Vitamix; 15 seconds and done! 

Gingered Mushrooms with Creamy Onion Sauce, Vinegary Purple Slaw and Cucumbers -- serve with Iced Green Tea and Fresh Berries for Dessert [caption id="attachment_588" align="alignright" width="300"]Raw Veg Bowl Raw Veg Bowl[/caption] Gingered Mushrooms – 4 or 5 servings 3 large Crimini/portobello mushroom caps or 3 cups mushrooms, cleaned and sliced ¼ cup nama shoyu or tamari 1 tsp coconut oil ½ tsp liquid stevia or 1 dried stevia leaf, ground 1 Tbsp grated ginger from a big knob of fresh ginger Mix all ingredients except for mushrooms in a shallow dish that is large enough to hold all the mushrooms.  Once the marinade is combined, toss the mushrooms to coat.  You may need to rub them and turn them quite a bit, but rest assured, there will be enough marinade.  Set the mushrooms into a dehydrator set at 105 for 30 minutes.  If you don’t have a dehydrator, simply boil a pot of water (the pot needs to be small enough to be able to support the mushroom dish without the dish falling into the water); take the pot off the heat and set the mushroom dish on top.  The residual heat from the water will gently warm the mushrooms and encourage them to release quite a bit of liquid.  Once warmed, turn the mushrooms in their own liquid and serve.  Alternatively, just set the mushrooms aside for a few minutes while you slice and prep the remaining bits of the meal.  Creamy Onion Sauce 1 cup water ½ cup cashews ½ cup raw shelled hempseed 2 tsp onion powder salt and pepper to taste Blitz everything in Vitamix or blender until smooth; about 15 seconds. Purple Slaw – per serving ½ cup purple cabbage, sliced thin ½ cup lettuce, bok choy or green cabbage, sliced thin splash of apple cider vinegar or rice wine vinegar Cucumber – per serving 2 small yellow cucumbers or your favorite variety splash of vinegar Assembly: I plated this meal with each component in its own space in the bowl.  The onion sauce was on the side in a tasting cup, which made dipping delightful.  A few slices of fresh avocado and a heap of sliced pickled ginger garnished the center and made every bite that much more heavenly!

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Sarah Lawrence

I Eat Fast Food

Will you believe me when I tell you that I eat fast food?  It’s true!  In fact, I encourage it!  This month I am going to tell you all about it, so stay tuned and check back for all the details.... So, here's my confession:  I love Fast Food!  My fast food is ready in a few minutes and it’s processed… in my vitamix! Pull out your blender or food processor and join me in the kitchen!  Today’s recipe is quick, easy and can’t be beat!... Lemony Summer Soup Talk about a summer dream: Light and lemony, cool and refreshing, quick and clean (because there is no peeling involved!)… it makes mealtime on a hot summer day a real breeze! Because summer veggies are abundant, this recipe is easy to multiply to feed a crowd.  As always, I encourage you to play with your food and flavors and make them your own.  What tastes great to me may not to you, so use my recipe as a springboard if you need to or use it as written if you like the idea! [caption id="attachment_580" align="alignright" width="300"]Lemony Summer Soup Lemony Summer Soup[/caption] You can eat the whole batch for under 200 calories while packing in about 7.5 grams of protein, 11 grams of fiber and tons of nutrients!  Check it out --    Here’s the nutritional lowdown:  Live Enzymes -- You are using raw food power and your body will benefit from live enzyme action as well as unadulterated nutrients.  B Vitamins -- The B-vitamins folate, B6, B1, B2, B3, and choline Vitamins A, C and K – Vitamin C is highest in the Lemon, but Tomato and squash are respectable sources as well! Blood Sugar Stabilizers – Zinc, magnesium, omega-3 fatty acids, Pectin; Fiber (1.5 g per cup of squash) Anti-Oxidants -- lutein and zeaxanthin are in the squash skins, so buy organic and leave the skins on.  The tomato is rich in lycopene, which is implicated in heart and bone health.  The Avocado helps boost the absorption of the lycopene while adding a beautiful creaminess to the soup! Fiber – about 11 grams of fiber in the recipe as written   Kid tip: When introducing new flavors or new foods to children, try presenting things in tiny vessels. I use tasting cups, shot glasses, and amuse bouche spoons to plate the new option on the side of a familiar meal. I say something like, “Since this is a new recipe, I can only spare a taste for each of you. Let me know what you think!” When it goes over well, I pull from the stash and offer a bit more. When it doesn’t, I take notes and engage my kids in the creation process. It’s a win either way! [caption id="attachment_581" align="alignleft" width="300"] Tasting cups for Kids[/caption] Lemony Summer Soup  1 cup yellow squash 1 cup zucchini 1 yellow tomato ¼ of an organic lemon, peel and all ½ clove garlic ½ cup or about ½ of an avocado, pitted and peeled ½ tsp Himalayan Salt basil, thyme or oregano - fresh or dried, optional garnish Cut veg into chunks.  Puree everything in Vitamix or other blender until smooth.  Add a little cool water to thin if desired.   References: National Research Council. "7 Dietary, Functional, and Total Fiber." Dietary Reference Intakes for Energy, Carbohydrate, Fiber, Fat, Fatty Acids, Cholesterol, Protein, and Amino Acids (Macronutrients). Washington, DC: The National Academies Press, 2005. P357. Print.

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