Friday, August 9, 2013

Healthy Vegan Blueberry pancakes with strawberry maple sauce gluten free options

 Not to toot my own horn, but these were the best pancakes.. ever. I've had diner pancakes, ihop, BLD, denny's jimmy dean... NOPE. They have nothing on these pancakes! And unlike their pancakes, you don't feel sick after eating these!
Pancake Ingredients:

  • 2/3 C unbleached flour (or gluten free all purpose flour)
  • 1/3 C almond meal mixed with a bit of flax meal
  • 2-4 drops liquid stevia (taste the batter to see if you want more)
  • 2 TABLESPOONS  aluminum free baking powder
  • a pinch of sea salt
  • 1 cup organic rice milk (or other non dairy milk)
  • 1 TABLESPOON sunflower seed oil (or other non gmo oil)
  • 1 heaping TABLESPOON mashed organic banana (or organic unsweetened applesauce)
  • 2 teasppons vanilla extract
  • 2-3 handfuls washed organic blueberries
  • organic earth balance vegan butter (or non gmo cooking oil) as needed for greasing pan
Strawberry Sauce Ingredients:
  • 5-6 Organic Strawberries
  • organic earth balance vegan butter (about 1 tablespoon)
  • 1-3 tablespoons real maple syrup
  • dash of cinnamon (optional)
  • dash of vanilla (optional)

Organic is necessary. Not only is it better for your health, it is better for our earth. Don't ruin our planet, buy as much organic as you can afford. You'd be surprised, some organic items at trader joe's are cheaper than conventional at a typical grocery store. And some things should only be bought organic. Soft skinned fruits such as: apples, raspberries, blueberries, blackberries, strawberries, peaches, etc... Did you know that strawberries are sprayed with more pesticide than any other conventionally grown produce? Soft fruits and veggies like lettuce and strawberries soak up the pesticide, and you eat it. yum. Hey maybe it will keep the bugs from biting you..?

Now, for the pancakes,
Mash banana well, and then whisk in all other ingredients. Add blueberries last, and gently fold in.
preheat two non pfoa non-stick pans (such as mercola, greenpan, orgreenic, cast iron, or another natural non-stick cookware{not tephlon}). In the smaller pan, put your butter for the strawberry sauce. Grease the larger non stick pan for your pancakes. Drop large spoonfuls of the pancake batter on to the hot greased pan. cook about 2 minutes and flip.

In the other pan add chopped organic strawberries to the vegan butter. cook a few minutes, careful not to burn it. Add the maple syrup, bring it to a boil, reduce it to a simmer for a few minutes, then let it cool.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Making natural antibacterial soap one gallon under 4 dollars

Get a good bar of soap, I used a pretty big bar, all natural oatmeal exfoliant soap from trader joe's. It was like $3. Vegan, and no lye (which is bad for your skin)
Shave your bar of soap with a cheese grater.
Bring about 1 gallon of water to a boil.
Add your shaved soap and stir.
Add a tablespoon or so of honey, a tablespoon or so of vegetable glycerin or rose water glycerin..
Now to make it antibacterial you can add witch hazel, tea tree oil, alcohol, peroxide, oil of oregano, a combination of things... You could also add things like vanilla extract for fragrance!
This particular batch I used tea tree oil and some witch hazel.
stir until everything is well blended, and let sit for 12 hours.
After 12 hours, use an immersion blender to make everything well incorporated.
You can also stir, and mix in batches in a kitchenaid, or use a hand mixer.

After it is evenly mix, use a funnel and a wooden spoon to pour it into a one gallon container.
I use empty iced tea gallon jugs from trader joe's, because they are BPA free and downright awesome! They even have a handle, how convenient!

Spilled some on the floor, Oh well, I used it to mop the floors, worked heavenly.

The end result:
Ewwww grossss..
If you can't stand the way it looks add some food coloring or use a different soap! I might get a lavender bar next time. You will also notice it doesn't get crazy sudsy, this is mainly because it is all natural, and does not contain sodium lauryl sulfate-- a foaming agent. I might experiment with hydrogen peroxide. hmmm

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Pasta primavera with shrimp asparagus broccoli peas spinach and organic whole wheat pasta

This is one of my favorite recipes, it's delicious, super healthy packed with protein, vitamins, and it's low in fat!
If you are gluten free I would recommend a quinoa/corn pasta, or an organic corn pasta.


  • organic extra virgin olive oil
  • organic sweet onion
  • organic garlic
  • fresh or frozen organic broccoli
  • fresh asparagus (organic if available)
  • organic frozen peas
  • organic/pesticide free frozen spinach (can also use fresh)
  • organic free range chicken broth
  • fresh organic basil--about 1 large handul
  • lemon juice
  • sea salt
  • organic oregano
  • cleaned and devined raw wild caught shrimp (thawed) >>> you can use cooked shrimp, just warm them do not overcook
  • organic whole wheat pasta >rotelle or fusili is best

So I didn't take a million pics along the way for this recipe, Hopefully all my readers have read my prior recipes, or know how to cook...

  1. Examine your shrimp. Call me crazy, but all the shrimp you buy, that says CLEANED! DEVEINED! READY TO EAT!, ALL LIES. hahaha. So "they" say the shrimp is cleaned, but... it's not!! Take a look at your shrimp. It's a C shape. Take a sharp knife along the belly, the inner part of the C. Make a small slice, make sure there is no vein or poop, slice all the way to the top, a very shallow slice, don't tear the thing apart. Do the same with the outer part of the C. You'll find some lovely stringy stuff and brown poo. Whenever you go to a restaurant, you usually eat this, because they can't be bothered properly cleaning it! Yum! Place cleaned shrimp in a bowl, and rinse with water a few times.
  2. Bring a large pot of water to a boil while you cook everything else.
  3. Heat some olive oil on medium-low in a non stick cooking pan,or stainless steel. (I like Green pan- no pofa's)
  4. While you heat your oil, finely chop about half of a medium onion. Toss it into the hot pan.
  5. While the onion heats up, finely chop about half a head of garlic, like 7 or so cloves. Don't do less. This blog is about amazing recipes, not some baby-kid-stuff-wah-I-don't-like-garlic. If you don't like chunks of garlic use a garlic press/crusher. But use 7 cloves anyway! 
  6. Stir the onion, once it starts to soften add the garlic, stir, cook for a minute or two..
  7. Now, what comes next all depends on if your using fresh or frozen, and what veggies... It should go like this...
  8. Add enough chicken broth to coat the bottom of the pan, more as needed.. Add a few squirts of lemon juice.
  9. Add you fresh or frozen broccoli, cover, and steam for 2-3 minutes. Stir.
  10. Then add your trimmed asparagus (cut into 2 inch pieces) cover cook for 2 minutes longer.. stir
  11. add frozen peas , and frozen spinach.. stir and cover. add more chicken broth or oil as needed. Simmer on low, stirring and checking occasionally.
  12. By now hopefully your water is boiling for the pasta.. salt the water, add a touch of oil, and add your pasta, 2/3 lb or so. Set a timer for 6 min, or test until al dente.
  13. In a separate small pan, heat some olive oil on medium heat. Add your shrimp. flip half way. When the pasta is almost done, break your shrimp in half with the spatchula. Make sure it is cooked, and white inside. Taste one if you are unsure.
  14. When the pasta is done, drain, put in a large bowl, add some salt and oil, toss.. dump veggies, liquid and cooked shrimp on top.Toss. Add finely chopped fresh basil, oregano.. And sea salt to taste.

Grilled bacon wrapped mahi mahi

This is super delicious, and pretty easy, it should please the pickiest fish eaters.
What you will need:
  • Wild caught mahi mahi (I buy it frozen from Trader joe's, and thaw it overnight)
  • natural turkey bacon (I buy it from trader joe's)
  • paprika, south african smoke spice, garlic powder, chili powder (optional)

 First things first, take your skin-less, bone-less mahi mahi... gently sprinkle the seasonings on each side.
Notice how i don't use salt. It's not necessary, because the fish is salty, and so is the bacon...
 You want to partially cook you bacon before wrapping the fish with it, cook it about 5 minutes or so, or until it gets firm, yet pliable, right before it gets crispy. Cook your bacon in some vegan butter, or some oil..
After it is partially cooked, let it dry a little on some paper towels. Once it is cool enough to handle, either wrap or lay the bacon on the fish, and tie with some kitchen twine.

 Grill on medium heat for about 3-7 minutes per side (depending on your grill)
The bacon should have nice grill marks, and the fish should be firm white and flakey inside.


Friday, April 5, 2013

How to restore your pet's health during allergy season with apple cider vinegar and flax oil

I am not a veterinarian, please consult with your vet before giving your dog new things.
Yes pets can have allergies too! My doberman pincher gets it pretty bad every year. Her eyes get all goopy with gooey junk, it's gross. So I thought this year I would try something. APPLE CIDER VINEGAR!
This stuff is sooo nasty but boy does it fix so many problems! When I worked at the vet's office I remember seeing a few items containing apple cider vinegar so I knew it was safe for them, and I heard it helped with human allergies, so why not try it out? This stuff exceeded my expectations, her eyes used to be filled with the goo junk, we would have to wipe it out throughout the day, now there is no goo at all. Like magic!
She has been on flax oil for some time already, the omega 3s and omega 6s fixes her dry skin, and improves her fur quality as well.
So now every day, I fill a big and little food bowl with food. (we have an australian cattle mix also)
I put about 4 cap-fulls of apple cider vinegar in the big bowl, and like 2 in the little one.
Then I drizzle the flax oil on top, about a tablespoon or so, and for the smaller bowl I do less than a teaspoon. In the beginning she would sneeze at it, but now she prefers it in her food.
Although, I can't stand the taste, apple cider vinegar is good for you too! There are two many things, but it virtually helps almost everything.  Allergies, arthritis, joint pain, balancing PH, acid reflux, acne, regulate blood pressure..... The list is endless.
If you can find raw, that's great! But this is what's at trader joe's so this is what I buy. It seems to have done a great job on my dogs, anyway.

That's my pretty girl patiently waiting for one of her homemade holistic treats.
For more info on my treats check them out here

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Gourmet Vegan Kale and Pea Stuffed Shells using a homemade cashew ricotta

I used to loveeee ricotta. And I have been dying inside without lasagnas, and what not. I used to make these stuffed shells, with swiss chard, peas, ricotta and mozzarella. When my boyfriend became extremely lactose intolerant, I pretty much gave up on having stuffed shells. Oh but the power of raw cashews... I'm pretty convinced you can do anything with raw cashews. Why should I waste my time and money on raw cashews when ricotta is cheaper and easier?

  • Cashews are never treated with growth hormones like cows are
  • Cashews do not contain blood, pus, or infections, like cows milk does.
  • Cashews contain healthy fats that promote a healthy body and brain.
  • Unlike milk, which feeds cancer, cashews contain flavanols that stop cancer from growing.
  • Cashews eliminate free radicals, milk does not.
  • Cashews promote good cardiovascular health
  • Cashews promote healthy skin, hair, bones...
Only other question is why aren't you eating cashews yet?
I remember I used to argue with vegans about milk. Back, before I did any real research on it. Milk is one argument I didn't win, and they actually had some very good points that I researched, and found were correct.
Humans are the only animal in the world that drinks another animals milk, and we drink it way past infancy. If you have a cow that grazes on grass, and it is giving you raw organic milk, why not make cheese out of it? Dr. Mercola swears by raw milk. The problem is, unless it's your cow, you don't know the condition of the cow that the milk is coming from. Milk, today, is pasteurized and homogenized for a reason; to kill bacteria. Cows aren't meant for commercial milk production, they often get udder infections, and pus and blood wind up in your milk. yum, drink up. So commercially sold raw milk has some risks, as you can see. Without further a due, I give you my amazing recipe.

You will need:
  • 1 box of large stuffing shells
  • 1 jar of homemade or organic tomato sauce
  • olive oil or sunflower oil for greasing the pan
{For the Filling}
  • 1 head of organic kale (approx 12 oz, or a massive double handful)
  • organic olive oil as needed (approx 2 tablespoons)
  • about 1/3 cup organic diced sweet onion
  • 4-5 cloves of organic garlic
  • 3/4 cup organic frozen peas, thawed
  • about 3 cups raw cashews (soaked in water for at least 6 hours and drained)
  • about 6 tablespoons organic tofu (anything but extra firm should work fine, I used firm. Make sure you squeeze out water from tofu before using)
  • (optional)1 scant cup shredded vegan mozzarella (I used TEESE)
  • filtered water as needed (about 1/4 cup)
  • sea salt to taste (approx 1/2 teaspoon?)
  • pepper to taste
  • a sprinkle of garlic powder, and dried oregano
  • chopped organic fresh basil, about 1/4 cup, If you don't have that much you can sprinkle some dried basil
*NOTE-with this amount of cashews, it made more then I needed, for 1 box of stuffed shells, you need 2 cups of the ricotta, So before adding the kale, I spooned out about a cup, added some fresh wild spring onions, and veggies, and ate it as vegan cream cheese the next day. You can also freeze any leftover, the pureed cashews will stay fresh for months in the freezer, and about 4 days in the fridge.

Now this is your cashew ricotta, deviate from my recipe. My blender is terrible so just to get it to blend at all I need to add water. Hold off on a ton of water if you have an awesome blender. Put your soaked & drained cashews into the blender, and puree. If it doesn't do much add some water, mix, and puree. This isn't an exact science, you keep playing with it until you get the perfect consistency YOU want, and the right taste.
add a dash of sea salt, and pepper, some tofu, some water... Blend. you can also try adding olive oil to give it a more Italian flavor. A dash of garlic powder, dash of dried oregano... Once you think you have a good consistency, taste it, see if it needs more salt. This can be made without tofu, but it makes the consistency just right. Blend in your shredded vegan cheese. Bring a large pot of water to a boil for your stuffed shells.

In a frying pan, heat up some olive oil on medium low heat. dice your onion and toss it in the pan, stir. Wash and dry the kale. cut out the thick stem. You can steam this and eat it another day, or give it to your dog, my dogs love kale. Cut the kale into about 1 in pieces. Chop your garlic. Once your onion has some color, add the chopped garlic and cook for another minute or two, stir, and add kale. Sprinkle with sea salt, and cook for a few minutes until wilted, if you forgot to thaw your peas throw them into the pan also. Stir occasionally. Once your pot of water is boiling add a dash of olive oil, a dash of salt, and 12 oz of shells and cook for about 9 minutes, stirring occasionally. when the timer goes off drain and rinse with cool water.

When your kale mixture is done, set aside for a few minutes to cool. 
Once it cooled add it to the blender. Make sure you either took some ricotta out or didn't make the full amount, it should be about 2 cups  in the blender before the kale.
 Add your chopped basil. Blend until, well, blended.. It might take a few minutes,  and some additional mixing with  a rubber spatchula. Taste it! If it's bland add some salt, and maybe garlic powder or more dried herbs. You can always add more salt! But if it's too salty then it's difficult to correct.

Then pour the ricotta mixture into a ziploc bag (1/2 gallon bag) and seal it. In a large baking tray, about 9x13 or larger, spray some non gmo cooking spray, or brush the inside with oil. Take your tomato sauce and lightly spoon some over the bottom. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees F.
Push the mixture out of one corner of the bag, and using a scissor, snip that corner.
Now gently squeeze it into a shell. and place the shell into your baking pan. If you find they aren't closing, you are putting too much filling. It's about a tablespoon and a half worth into each shell.
Once you filled your pan with stuffed shells, spoon some more sauce over the top of the shells.
Bake for 25-30 minutes.
If some shells don't fit in your pan, no worries. Place them on a plate, and put them in the freezer until they harden a little, then transfer into a ziploc bag. They'll stay fresh frozen for months and months, just remember they need baking when your ready to use them!

When the shells are done serve with hot tomato sauce, sauteed asparagus, or whatever you want.
My picky, vegetable-hating boyfriend enjoyed these, but being a completely vegan meal, he thought it needed chopped crispy turkey bacon. Oh men.

The consistency is dead on to that of real stuffed shells.
Buon appetito!

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