Monday, April 20, 2009

living the life...

Yesterday was the 4th birthday of Blanche the "Angel of Deaf" *cough*SLAYER*cough*
As you can see, she spends most of her day contemplating her place on earth and the meaning of life... which she has indicated is Food, Naps, Toys and Loves. In that order. I can't imagine my life without her.
She and I have a lot in common... Specifically our love of food and eating. Today was my day off work and I took the opportunity to do what I normally like to do on my days off: Emotional eating. Today's lunch was so luxurious and flavorful. Perfect for our 73 degree weather, I ate out on the porch and revelled in it. Most all my eating is to feel good. Either ease hunger, satisfy a craving, or treat myself to something special. Today it was all three.

Lunch was zucchini noodles tomato and shallot tossed in basil/olive oil dressing... so fresh and filling and subtle yet savory Dessert being Sliced Mango marinated with Sweet Ginger Syrup... topped with coconut mmmmm
As Stacey would type "MLR" (my life rules)

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Found this...

My old band, kinda awful sound but glad to have a visual record of me singing since I don't really plan to be in another band. I can show it to my sisters grandkids someday... haha

as long as YOU'RE comfortable...

Thanks so much for your love and concern for my pup friend... She is doing great and continuing right along in her spoiled lifestyle. As you see above she uses us a furniture as she sees fit, regardless of our comfort ;) Always lookin out for #1
Have had some frustration at work due to the FDA lately. We were made a part of the peanut recall and pretty much bullied into recalling our product with peanuts and made to put out a press release saying so, then were later told that the peanuts we use were never actually part of the recall. We were also informed by a customer that our product had been identified at their store by the FDA as needing to be relabled. We were told we are not allowed to say "made with organic ingredients" on our product, or really make any claims like "fresh", or "healthy", or "natural"... Now I can understand why you can't say fresh, I guess, since that is a somewhat subjective evaluation; saying "made with organic ingredients" is not. They ARE in fact, made with organic ingredients but it seems to say that we have to pay to become organic certified and also make an annual payment based on our unit sales. So we lease the word essentialy. Who owns the word "organic"? Is it copy written? What's more, how long will it be before you can't even list "organic flour" in your ingredients list? All of our organic ingredients are certified, we shouldn't have to be personally certified to mention that. Frustrating.

On a better note, this weekend I am going to 2 exciting raw food "cooking" classes... This is what I get to learn!
Nuevo Mexican Raw Dinner Menu:
Corn Tortillas - These corn tortillas will quickly become a favorite in your house. Make from raw corn and hemp and flax seeds, they are then dehydrated and can be stored for months in your refrigerator or freezer.
Enchilada Spirals – These very special enchiladas will be made using raw corn tortillas and wrapping them around a veggie taco filling like a spiral then topping them with enchilada sauce, pine nut sour cream and avocado slices. These are so flavorful, satisfying and unique.
Mexican-Spanish Rice – It tastes like the best Spanish rice you’ve ever eaten, only there’s no rice! Elaina will show you how to use vegetables and spices to recreate all the flavors and comfort of rice.
Taco Filling – Again, keeping with her low to no nut agenda, Elaina will demonstrate how to take root vegetables and turn them into the most flavorful, juicy, mouthwatering taco filling that can be eaten in a “taco”, on your salad, in your Enchilada Spirals or dehydrated into crunchy snacks or burgers.
Enchilada Sauce – A light and flavorful sauce that can be used in a variety of dishes.
Pine Nut Sour Cream – A light and fluffy version of sour cream with Irish moss, pine nuts and more flavors to make this a raw food staple

Elegant Raw Desserts Class Menu:
Crème Caramel – Experience the sensuous elegance of this melt in your mouth heavenly flan treat while learning the secrets of successfully working with Irish moss.
Hazelnut/Cacao Ganache Truffles – These are real Cacao confections; we will be stepping into the world of a chocolate lovers dreams, I’m talking Willie Wonka goes Raw/Vegan. Get ready to bust open your heart and enter the realm of Theobroma/Cacao.
White Chocolate – Raspberry Swirl Cheesecake – One of the most popular cheesecakes at Café Gratitude and a must have in anyone’s black book of raw desserts. As well as learning to create a truly heavenly cheesecake you will learn the art of swirling, which can turn any plain pie, cheesecake or frosting into a stunning work of art!

Sunday, February 22, 2009

rollercoaster ride

So a certain someone some of you may know...
Decided it would be a good idea yesterday morning right as I was leaving for work, to jump up on the kitchen counter and eat 4 raw chocolate macaroons fresh out of the dehydrator. Now I am normally very careful with chocolate, onions, grapes and other dog poisons but she was in the bedroom asleep with the door shut and I put them on the counter with the intention of putting them away as soon as they had cooled. I didn't think she would be awake until I left for work. I was sadly mistaken and careless. She grabbed them and swallowed them whole before I even knew what happened. I woke up my sister (the vet) on her day off and she advised inducing vomiting. I had to rush to the store, buy a turkey baster and hydrogen peroxide, and race home. Trying to force the hydrogen peroxide down b bears gullet was one of the most traumatic experiences in me, chuck, and blanches lives. I was crying, blanche was red and panicked, and alex was scratched and shaky. The first two times we didn't get enough down and had to do it one more time before it finally worked. WHAT A HELL RIDE! She finally tossed her cookies (well, my cookies) and I was so happy to see them all come up whole, which means no digestion or absorption of the chocolate. I feel so awful to have been so irresponsible and put pup in harms way. Please learn from my mistake and be extra vigilant for your doggies. I am so glad I had alex to help me... We could barely hold her down together, there is no way I could have done it alone.
Today was a much better day. She and I spent the morning cleaning and napping (on her part). I did a whole bunch of grocery shopping later in the morning. Hit Raw Vegan Source (.com) and restocked on all my raw nuts and seeds I can't get elsewhere. Also enrolled for the raw mexican food and dessert classes they are having next weekend. I am pretty excited about that as they will both be using irish moss and I am really curious about that. I was a busy be when I got home... I made more macaroons (since pup ate most of mine) being very careful she couldn't snatch any. Made crackers and cashew cheese. Brazil nut milk. Oh! and of course ICE CREAM. A really good coconut ice cream. So dinner was pizza followed by a bowl of ice cream with a hot macaroon crumbled on top. YUM!

Saturday, February 21, 2009

good article

Just wanted to share this nice article I just read... It is about "falling off the raw wagon" and sets a bit more realistic tone for aspiring raw foodies such as myself.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Lazy day

I am FINALLY posting (how many of my posts start with those words?) about my trip to California and a life update...
First off, California was great. Not as much Sun as I could have hoped for, and not as much raw food as I needed, but great friends and a great break from routine.
I stayed with BFF Stacey who I have convinced to go on a 30 day raw challenge (so go give her some encouragement!). She and her sister have a nice apartment a mile (maybe less) from the beach in Santa Monica, centraly located near many shopping establishments and raw eateries ;)
The first day I was there I got in the car Stacey said she had a suprise at her house for me... it was my friend ANDY!
He had been around hanging out with a mutual friend (Ben) who was down visiting from Portland and heard I was coming so stayed up in SM to see me :) We all walked to the beach and stood on the pier for a bit dispite the fact that it was raining. Good thing Ben and I brought our RAIN COATS! (to california!!! how wrong!!!) After the pier we went to Juliano's raw because I had been DREAMING of the Raw Tortilla Soup and Mocha Smoothie (hold the Love Honey, ewww). They were out of the soup and that was pretty devistating. We had some other good stuff instead... Sushi bites, Pasta Premivera, Coconut spring roll things, and smoothies.
We did some window shopping and went back to the house for a bit to rest up before the show. The heavans aligned and I just happened to be there when my two favorite (SoCal Vegan Straightedge) bands were playing at a house in Pasadena so we were all excited to go and see Andy's band play. It was like a reunion party just for me... I felt so happy and loved because none of my Orange County friends expected to see me and it was like hug after hug. I even got to see a few people who I had no idea would be there. GREAT FEELING. The show was great, sang along til my voice was scratchy, and remembered again why I love (certain, haha) hardcore.

Ran with stacey along the beach the next morning and got my first actual view of the venice boardwalk. Went to breakfast and had a mostly non-raw vegan meal with some friends from the show. It was a great but not healthy feeling meal, how often can you get vegan eggs benedict, right? ...and so good to spend extra time with some amazing people. Later went to see an awful movie and had lunch at Real Food Daily. We saw the guy who played Bud from "married with children" (my only celeb sighting of the trip) and ate more cooked food. After the second heavy meal of the day Stacey and I were exhausted and ready to go home, rest, and not eat for the rest of the day. We dropped ben at the airport and went home to veg out. The next day we went to ths SM Sunday Market and had a coconut from the Juliano's booth and some snacks. We were on a mission to find a new vegan eco friendly store of some sort we had heard of in Venice but after walking HOURS found out they weren't open on Sundays. We ate at RawVolution on the way and had the highly reccomended Nachos (from Aimee and Chris), a pudding parfait, and choc-chip cookie dough ball. The Nachos were really good, especialy the chip things, they were so fluffy and crispy. Wow. Loved the texture. I did not read the ingredients for the nachos before ordering and found out after starting that they had walnuts aplenty. I freaked myself out and nearly had a panic attack that I was going into anaphalaxis but luckily Stacey talked me down and I was fine. Haha, I am rediculous. After that it was time to go meet up with Alex's sister and nephew and go up to Ventura/Oxnard for the last day of my trip. Ate a bunch of not raw food the last day and kinda gave up trying at that point... figuring I could get back on track once I got home. It was really great to see my boyfriends family. I love them all and they are so welcoming to me. It is really comfortable :)
Took the plane home and have been catching up on work and life since then.
Here are some more pictures from my trip:

Find more photos like this on Raw Fu

Since my trip:
-Got sick from eating too much cooked food, hopefully learned my lesson for a while
-Went to a pretty fun Raw Potluck on VDay with Alex, Aimee, and Chris, met and saw some rawfu friends
- Had a few good runs, feeling good about the fact that it is STARTING to get light earlier.
- Got a new BIG TV with alex for the living room. 32" it rules.
- Worked late last night with one of our Drivers and learned how to do the delivery route. I am supposed to be sleeping right now as I have only had 3 hours of sleep in the last 36 hours but I am taking the opportunity to post this.
- Hanging with Bdog today

Monday, February 2, 2009

Oh Happy Day...

So far, today is shaping up to be a great one.
- In four days I will be in Santa Monica (it WILL be sunny! Got that, weather report?!)
- I just found out that we may be going to see two of my favorite bands play the first night I am in Ca. I am so happy because they are also my good friends and I didn't think I would end up seeing much beyond my BFF Stacey.
- Had a great run this morning, it was clear and 43 degrees (relativly warm) warm enough that m eyes didn't tear and the breath did not catch in my throat...
- I am hanging out with my other BFF today, Carey (who has a very funny blog, click here) and our dogs... Who are also best friends, though mine is a bit abusive to the black man...

- I think I successfully cultured cashew cheese for the first time the other day. Tasty!
- Looking forward to Aimee's blog post about all the food she got to eat this weekend in southern california... I think it will be a forcast of my weekend ;)

Friday, January 30, 2009

Raw Lasagna Demo

Please enjoy a little video I made featuring my dinner tonight :)

For Lasagna
1 Zucchini (sliced thin)
2 cups Marinara
1 cup Cashew Cheese
Filling (as recipe makes)

Cashew Cheese:
1.5 cups cashews (soaked 2 hours)
Juice of 1 juicey lemon
3 T nutritional yeast
1/2 clove garlic
salt to taste
water as needed
Blend in VitaMix until smooth

1 cup sundried tomatoes soaked 2 hours
1 lg tomato
3 baby carrots
1/4 green bell pepper
1 T miso paste
1-2 t apple cider vinegar
1/2 clove garlic
2 T onion
2T olive oil
chilli powder to taste
salt to taste
Basil and Oregano to taste
Blend in VitaMix until smooth

1 c spinach
1 c bell pepper
1 c mushroom
12 basil leaves
2 T olive oil
salt and pepper

Monday, January 26, 2009

When it is clear here seattle is THE most beautiful place... unfortunately these moments are few and far between. I try to get out a few times during the day on the oh so rare sunny days. Luckily, in 11 days I will be in sunny Santa Monica California!!! (yes I know, you all know, I keep talking about it!!!) I am so over do for a vacation though. I am really hoping to get to explore all the raw food available to me in santa monica and surrounding areas. That and spend a large amount of time in the san and warm air. Wearing t-shirts! Last I checked mid day temps have a forecasted high of mid 70's. It was 27 when I woke up this morning. The upside is that I have had LOTS of opportunities to wear my new coat.
Blanche greeted the dawn today and promptly found a sun spot on the couch to catch some rays. She is ready for california too. We decided on a date to leave on our March West Coast Road Trip... March 1st. We had wanted to go a little later in the month but because of other co-workers RTO's we got stuck in the first two week pocket. I am just happy to be going. Well, and it is pretty awesome to go on a trip and have another one coming just 3 weeks later... Just me, chuck, blanche, joe, joe's friend eric, and the open road ;)
I had a few non raw meals over the last few days... Time to get back to my "things that keep me from being raw" list. This time it was Social Gathering and Not Being Prepared that did me in. Today I got back to my good raw behavior and had a pizza and salad for lunch, proceeded by an apple-banana-romaine smoothie. I also have some flax and purple corn chips in the dehydrator. They will be a great snack with lunches over the next week. I went grocery shopping and finally made the big decision to dye my hair. I was letting it grow in grey, which would be cool if it were ALL grey but it isn't, it's salt and peppery... I went back to black (as it were) and I am always happy when I do because it makes my skin look brighter and my eyes look more blue and I feel better overall.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

hair cut, new coat, new woman

I am feeling much more put together this week than last part could be that I got this new coat, which I can wear with the collar up or down... Part could be that I have a great trip planned, work is settling down after the holidays, and raw food is getting routine. After getting my new coat I felt like I had to live up to it and today when I got home from work I went to get a hair cut. Of course I had to come home and fix my bangs, but overall I like it. I think I am planning on growing it out but I am not certain. In the meantime I can't handle the shaggy unkemptness I have been dealing with. So here is my new hair cut
I know I have gotten away from my "things that keep me from being raw" series... I haven't forgotten it. I just haven't had the time to invest in thinking about it lately.
Anyone have good suggestions for things for me to do while in santa monica???

Monday, January 19, 2009

Happy 100th Post to ME!!!

What an auspicious day to make my 100th blog post. I woke to see the most beautiful foggy morning. The best part? SUN!! That's right! 2 days IN A ROW! Insane right? It sure does a lot to boost the mood here in the great northwest when we have a few days of sun. I am spending my morning cleaning the house, watching a financial "president Obama and your money" show, and waiting for my new jacket (photo coming soon!) to come in the mail.
The other night I went out with friends Aimee and Chris to dinner at Thrive. Again a great meal, and a really good time catching up with friends I hadn't seen in a while. Aimee gave me a container of some raw nacho cheese she made and i had it for dinner the next day. I put it in the vita mix for a bit to warm it up and then dipped all these veggies and some crackers in it. The funny part was that it was basically a more elaborate version of the dinner I had the night before at thrive. It was just so good I had to have it twice!

The other day I made Mock Tuna from RAWvolution and put it into collard wraps with some greens. I made three wraps and froze the rest of the "tuna" for later. I am trying to work on the preparedness part of my raw goals so I am trying out freezing left overs to see how they keep. The wraps are pretty tasty and I have one left to take to work tomorrow. There is something really satisfying about eating food that is bigger than your head.
Let's go back to the above moment in history and remember last June (7 months ago, far too long) when I was in California and went to eat at juliano's RAW with my bff Stacey. What a good time. Things have been dark and gloomy here and I have been working hard so I decided to be spontaneous and use my earned frequent flyer miles to go to LA for a few days. I will be staying with Stacey, definitely eating LOTS of great raw food, definitely running and working out in the sun, and definitely recharging my Vitamin D. 18 days and counting! I am so excited to be taking a little vacation and spending time with a very fun person. Anyone know any scams to get free frequent flyer miles or how to hack into alaskan airlines and give me more? Flying for free is awesome.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Things that stop me from eating raw... Pt. 2

An explanation first...
I seem to have maybe come off as a bit of a negative nancy. My yardsnacking friend seemed a little concerned about the tone of my last post and asked if my cup was half empty; only if its a cup of coffee buddy! Which I haven't had in weeks!
No, seriously... When I am struggling with a problem the way I am able to turn it around and figure it out is to identify ALL the barriers stopping me from reaching my destination, solve each problem (or decide if the problem really IS a problem) and take down the things stopping me so I can move forward.
That last post was my first step in identifying the barriers to me going back to 100% (or darn close) raw food. The process will be to go through each group of barriers, one item at a time if they are particularly hard to deal with, and see how to problem solve. Seems logical right?
Keep in mind that at this point I am hovering right around 75% overall... I did eat a cooked meal with friends the other day at an unnamed local vegan thai restaurant that has a buffet from 11-4 monday-saturday. It was good but I felt like crap afterwards... I am putting off the first group "social barriers" until I can think on it a little more.
The first group of "barriers" is...

Other Barriers ahh others
1. Not Being Prepared (and Other Excuses)
- Not having food on me when I am hungry

easy enough right?! ALWAYS CARRY FOOD! ALWAYS! I know lara bars aren't REALLY 100% but they are better than a lot of crap I could resort to when I get low blood sugar so if nothing else I will always have a larabar on me. Until I learn to make my own fruit/nut bars.
- Not wanting to eat what IS available that is raw
this is a little tougher... luckily I will pretty much always eat a larabar. Things I tend to turn my nose up at: uncut apples, uncut fruit in general... moral of that story: eat a banana! Or start carrying a knife. That would make me look tougher too.
- Wanting comfort food
luckily this one isn't as hard as it sounds because I am willing to spend the time preparing foods that fill this niche for me... zucchini noodles with red sauce and nutritional yeast (dream come true!) Raw pizzas with marinated mushrooms and olives (OMG!) Pie after delicious raw fatty pie!!! I just have to have it ready when I need it. Luckily I am strategizing how to get and stay ahead on my food prep and make certain things routine so I will always have them. In the past I have shied away from freezing a little bit, I think I am going to be a bit less reluctant to do so this time around so I can make MORE at once and have it keep for those days I just don't feel like being in the kitchen.
- Craving something that isn't raw
This really only happens when I am hungry. I am only hungry when I am not prepared and didn't eat. (See beginning if this list) Also if I really want to try something cooked I will taste it. In the past round this was a great way for me to assuage my cooked curiosity without overdoing it. Usually I taste it and think "no, that's not really what I wanted"
- Having no groceries
I can see this being a problem whenever work gets hectic and stressful. If I only get one day off on a week it is really hard for me to make myself go do all the shopping. I have to rent a zipcar, drive all around town getting the best deals, come put the grocerys in the house and drop the car back off before walking the 3/4 mile home. Not really so bad, and I feel fortunate that at this point in my life I can afford a car share service... but a good three hours of my day, not to mention food prep for the week. I guess I am hoping for this one that my freezing and stock pileing will see me through any weeks like this in my future and if I have several weeks like this on end maybe my boss will let me borrow a van after work one day so I can do my shopping straight from work. Cross that bridge when I get there.
- Wanting something fast and Convenient
Again, being prepared... thinking ahead of time. Always having some kind of fast and convenient option available to me. So after a long day of work if I don't feel like it I can throw something together without much thought.
- "Treating myself" to junk
Treat myself to RAW junk instead... like the coconut cream pie I made tonight!!!
(for recipe see penni's blog)
And really is "junk" really a treat? No, but it does feel like a reward, making an allowance because you deserve it or had a rough day. I just need to substitute the word raw in front of reward and I am A O K.
- Wanting something WARM
This one is a little tough because it has to do with something a little outside my control, weather. This last week hasn't been bad because it has been a bit warmer outside but especially when it was VERY cold before christmas all I wanted was HOT food. I know I can use my dehydrator to warm my foods, and I know I can drink hot tea, or use warming spices in my foods, but sometimes it doesn't feel like enough. I need more good raw soup recipes that I can let the vitamix bring up to 115 for me, and I will eat them in the bath. No really, I will. Mostly, I just need to live somewhere warm, like here where I used to live...

Not to make any of the above issues less than what they are for me, the real problem is a lack of forsight and planning. I do SO love to plan, and make schedules and systems, so if I look at it that way: as a project to try to successfully plan my raw menu, it should be fun and I will do well.

Next time...
Financial excuses!

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Things that stop me from eating raw... Pt. 1

Being inspired by many of my raw compatriots lately I have been thinking a lot about my raw journey and what I am doing with my diet/body right now and why.
Being the ESTJ and Project Manager that I am I made a list of sorts to help me figure it all out...
I know some of things things are irrational and downright untrue... but these are my thoughts so I have to consider them despite their untrueness as they are affecting my overall mental picture of being a raw food eater.
I plan on breaking down each of these areas and exploring my feelings about them in later posts.

Things That Stop Me From Eating Raw
Social Aspects
1. Party's
- wanting to feel included
- not wanting to draw attention to myself
- not wanting to be a hassle to others
- being asked to bring dishes other people like that I am known for
2. Social outings/ dinners out
- not wanting to make others feel they have to go somewhere they don't like or don't want to ALWAYS go to because it is the only place I can eat
- not being able to find satisfying food at a lot of restaurants
- feeling awkward if I eat before hand and sit at the table abstaining from food
3. Dinners at home
- not cooking for my boyfriend as often
- feeling like I am not participating in taking care of our family
- not wanting to cook the favorites because I won't be eating them and I have to make my own food too

Emotional Aspects
1. Fear
- Not wanting to commit because I may decide I want to eat cooked food at some point and I don't want to break even an informal commitment
- Worry that I won't get all the things (protein, vitamins, minerals- I know totally ridiculous!) I need from my diet
- Worry that anytime I am out of my routine eating exclusively raw means I may have to feel like I am making a sacrifice
2. Guilt
- Feeling like I am not giving my bf or friends care through food like I did before
3. Feelings of Sacrifice
- Not wanting to feel that being healthy means I have to sacrifice my joy of food
- Not wanting to give up foods that may me feel good
- Not wanting to give up time with my friends or social outings because of my eating habits
- Not wanting to give up food as emotional comfort/fulfillment
- Wanting to feel full

Other Barriers
1. Not Being Prepared (and Other Excuses)
- Not having food on me when I am hungry
- Not wanting to eat what IS available that is raw
- Wanting comfort food
- Craving something that isn't raw
- Having no groceries
- Wanting something fast and Convenient
- "Treating myself" to junk
- Wanting something WARM
2. Financial
- Raw food requires more frequent shopping
- Fresh foods are more expensive
- All the raw extras I need to have and expensive
- Wanting to make sure I am not using all our food budget on my stuff, making sure there is some for bf too

With all of that you may be asking "then why the hell do you want to eat raw food anyway?"
- When I was eating REALLY high raw I felt better than ever
my energy was up, I was motivated, allergies were minimal, health was optimal, I woke up feeling rested, I was more positive, I never felt weighed down or sluggish, I was more productive, I had more focus, and I was down to a weight I felt pretty good about.
Why wouldn't I want that?

Friday, January 9, 2009

Raw Pad Thai

Got this recipe from someone on Raw Fu and have been dying to try it. Now that I have my handy zucchini noodle maker it was destined to be. I thought it was really yummy and shared with my love who thought it was good but didn't think it tasted like pad thai.

Carmella's Pad Thai Sauce
Inspired by the creations of Frederic Patenaude and Elaina Love
1 heaping Tbs tahini
1 Tbs almond butter
A few cashews
1/4 cup sundried tomatoes, soaked
2 dates, soaked
1/2 lime, juiced
1-2 garlic cloves (we love garlic!)
1 Tbs grated fresh ginger
Braggs, to taste
Curry powder, to taste
Water or tomato soaking water (if unsalted!)
Blend in food processor with some water until you reach the desired consistency. (We like ours on the thick side!) Top with diced red or yellow peppers and marinated Portobellos.

Marinated Portobellos
1 Portobello mushroom
1 part apple cider vinegar
1 part Braggs or Nama Shoyu
2 parts olive oil
1 garlic clove, minced
1 tsp fresh ginger, grated
1 tsp agave nectar
Cut the mushroom into bite sized pieces. Put them in a bowl with other ingredients and mix well. Spread the Portobello pieces on a teflex sheet and dehydrated them for a couple of hours. You can also serve the mushrooms non-dehydrated for an equally delicious treat!

I deviated just a little from the recipe, using garlic powder and ginger powder instead of the fresh stuff (we're in the middle of a recession!) and I garnished it with marinated (not dehydrated) crimini mushrooms, chopped almonds, bean sprouts, green onion, and lime wedges.

update... spirooli

oh, I kinda look like skelletor in that picture but I am not. I am just enjoying the last of my groceries in juice form. We are out of all greens and all fruits officialy. I had planned on grocery shopping yesterday after I went to the Raw Vegan Source Store in redmond last night but unfortunately I was stuck in traffic FOR AN HOUR... Seriously NOT MOVING. How can people do that every day? It is the reality of a lot of peoples commutes and I just can't imagine that. I would go imsane. Or at least take the bus so I could read or compute or SOMETHING. I saw so many single occupancy vehicles.
Anyway... I ran out of time and had to get the Zipcar back. As it was I ended up extending the reservation to make it back in time. It is ok though because I spent all my money at the rvs as usual. I wouldn't have been able to buy groceries anyhow. We get paid again today so maybe this evening I can shop for food.
Also, I got my veggie spiralizer and it is awesome. I haven't quite figured it out yet but I am getting there. Once I have it down smoothly maybe I will do a video demo illustrating why every kitchen should have one.
The bike is in the process of being repaired. It is nice to have a leisurly walk to work from time to time, but this day after day 2.5 mile walk is wiping me out. Mostly because it shortens my free time at home and makes me feel like my work day was an hour longer. Usually my total commuting time (by bike) is 20-25 minutes a day. Walking makes it an hour and 20 minutes to an hour and 40 minutes depending on how tiredly I am plodding to/from work. At least today I am making my way there in daylight. Makes me feel like the day isn't quite SO long if I get to spend some time outside in the daylight.
The pouring rain also doesn't help me to enjoy my 40 minute walk to work.
Summer! Where are you!!?!!

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Peach Cheesecake!

I made some delicious dessert tonight, a coconut based peach cheesecake. The recipe is an approximation, I kinda just threw it together.
meat of 2 young coconuts
1T vanilla
2T coconut butter
agave to taste (about 1/4 cup)
juice of 1 lemon
1 T nutritional yeast (weird, right?!)

Peach topping
1 c chopped peaches
2T agave
2T water

1 c left over almond pulp
6-8 dates pitted
1/4 cup whole almonds
1/4t salt

Process crust, pulp salt and dates until combined add whole almonds and process until whole almond pieces are small but still add texture.
Press crust into a spring form pan.
Blend filling until smooth adding just enough water to allow blending. It is good if it warms just a little while blending to thoroughly emulsify the oil.
Smooth filling on top of crust
Blend peaches and agave and pour on top of filling.
Refridgerate a few hours and run a knife around the edge of your pan while loosening the band.

Just said goodbye to some friends who have been staying the last few days. Including our friend Andy seen below ;)

And our friends in Abandon an awesome vegan straightedge band from southern california.

I think blanche will miss them most <3

Sunday, January 4, 2009

sad bike...

Here is my wheel... glad it wasn't my head. Don't worry... I always wear my helmet.

My friend grabbed it today to take my hub out and rebuild the wheel. I might be walking for a few days though :(
Had a big breakfast at a friends house this morning, kinda a late christmas party. Everyone brought food or supplies to make food and i was asked to bring my "famous" cinnamon rolls. Not my words but they are damn good. Vegan desserts rule. Anyway, I ate a decent amount of cooked food with my large portion of fruit salad. I feel bad eating the cooked food despite that being my game plan. It was tasty though! I managed to eat less than half of a cinnamon roll and had NO coffee so I am doing well.
I also made sure to start my day with a green smoothie and a pear. That probably helped :)

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Thrive restaurant review and more

Well first I have to say that my dinner was dampened by being hit by a car on my bike ride home. I am ok, my bike is not. Maybe I will post a picture tomorrow of its sad smashed front wheel.

4.5 outta 5 carrots
I betcha didn't know I was a food critic! Well informally anyway...
So I went to the thrive gala of pure decadence which was a fund/intrest raising event they did about 2-3 months ago. Very delicious. I have been eager since then for the restaurant to open, and to eat there.
They have it set up as a restaurant/cafe with a small seating area and a little store section. The interior is well designed with a very "warm" earthy color scheme and presents a casual upscale type environment. The coolest thing about the store section is a wall of bulk bins that they are going to fill as they grow with all sorts of raw nuts and grawnolas and other great treats I would otherwise have to buy online. Right now it is sorta slim pickings but I can visualize the future bounty.
I went with my lovest alex and he had the hummos plate and the "shine" smothie. I had the pasta pomodoro. We also treated ourselves to the mochalatte pie for dessert.
The hummos was good but a little mustardy tasting and the server gave us some flax crackers to go with it. Without the flax crackers I may have felt the dipping selection (celery, carrots, zucchini, and bell peppers) to be a bit lacking. Good flavor and alex said very filling for an appitizer.
The shine smoothie was awesome. Alex said the best smoothie he ever tasted. Of course when I make him smoothies I always spike them with vitamineral green, spirulina, spinach or some other healthy additive. This one was just the fluff. Coconut water, coconut butter, pinapple, vanilla bean and from the taste of it some agave. Sweet and delightful.
My pasta was spiralized zucchini with a great tomato basil sauce on a bed of romaine (odd but I happily munched away on my lettuce). Our server, again, gave me a complementary addition of almond ricotta. Without the cheese the sauce may have seemed a little thin, it should just be part of the dish.
I had had the mocha pie at the tasting so I already knew how amazing it was. Didn't let me down. Although not completely raw as it has a shot of espresso somewhere in it, it tastes decadant and was worth the price considering I couldn't have eaten the whole thing myself. It was a two person dessert. Almost too sweet for me but alex said perfect for him.
Portion sizes were about perfect, not so much I had to take it to go, just enough to feel satisfied as I was taking my last few bites.
It is definetly a higher price point than what I can afford on a regular basis, which is too bad or I would probably go more often and end up spending more overall. Two people for dinner with one drink, one appitizer, one entre, and one dessert was over $40 with the tip. I am more of a $25-30 for two people kind of diner.
Good attentative service, very aware of when we needed attendance. The owner (or one of them?) was there and introduced herself as she had seen us around before.
Overall a very good experience.
Only change I would make is to label the few non raw foods they serve as not raw on the menu. I was a little confused as to what was and what wasn't raw.
I would love to go again and try more delicious food, but maybe in a few paychecks.

Thursday, January 1, 2009

2009 1st quarter goals

I can't really make a plan for the whole year... but I think I can come up with the first three months
Diet: Eliminate Coffee (how I love you), refined sugar (how I hate you even though you are so delicious!!!) and refined grains from my diet. Go to one cooked meal or less a day whenever possible. Allow myself to eat above 3 foods in VERY small quantities on special occasions if they arise. Start everyday with a raw green smoothie.
Exercise: Start running again. Even though it is cold and rainy :( And it sucks. At LEAST 6 miles a week by end of January.
Work: Hire some people. Redefine my job description with my boss so I know what I am doing.
Money: Make lots save lots

Diet: Green smoothie every day, leafy green salad every day... listen to what my body is telling me about cooked food and act accordingly.
Exercise: Average at least 9 miles a week running... add 10 miles to my average biking mileage per week (20, so 30 miles per week)
Work: ??? Who knows. Be less stressed and feel productive.
Money: Get back tax returns. Complete emergency savings fund and begin saving for something fun.

Diet: Continue to eat a mostly raw diet with lots of leafy greens. Base my cooked food intake on my bodies response.
Exercise: Consistently run 4 days a week even if my mileage is low. Make it a habit. Continue adding extra mileage beyond commuting to my bike rides. Check out pools for swim lessons for increased efficiency.
Work: Know what is happening in San Diego and have a plan for the next 6 months regarding my future.
Money: Have enough saved to take a vacation

Vacation plans:
Go down the coast with Alex, Blanche, and Joe and visit all our California friends. Eat lots of great live foods! Pick up tons of beach glass. Relax!