Monday, September 29, 2014

Raw Fig Chutney

Chutneys are wonderful companions to cold cuts and cheeses. My aged macadamia nut cheese can stand alone, but it tastes even better if accompanied by a sweet and spicy raw fermented fig chutney.

Raw fermented foods are truly living foods. They help stabilize intestinal flora, improve digestion and strengthen the immune system. 

I used figs because they are in season right now, but you can use pears or plums if you prefer. The trick is to allow the ingredients to ferment for at least couple of days.


Ingredients: 
  • 10 fresh figs
  • 1 1/4 cup raisins (soaked in water overnight)
  • 1 Tbsp probiotic powder (make sure your formula contains Lactobacillus acidophilus)
  • 1/2 cup purified water for blending
  • 1 small red onion, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 small red hot chili pepper, chopped seeds removed
  • 1 tsp Celtic sea salt (add more if needed)
  • 1/4 tsp allspice
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon


Method:
  • Wash the figs and cut off the tops. Cut figs into quarters and place them in a large mixing bowl. Add chopped onion, set aside.
  • In a blender combine raisins, chili pepper, garlic, spices and water. Blend until smooth. Add probiotic powder, blend again.
  • Pour the mixture over the figs and onions. Mix well, but do not break the figs. Add more water if the mixture is too thick.
  • Pour the mixture into a clip top jar leaving about 1 inch space between the fig chutney and the lid. Your chutney will expand during the fermentation process and it will need the extra space in the jar.
  • Place the jar in a warm place and allow the chutney to ferment for at least two days. On the second day of fermentation slightly open the lid to let the excess air out. This will prevent the overflowing. You can continue the fermentation process for another two to three days. Remember to let the excess air out every day.
  • Once your chutney has fermented to your personal preference, store the jar in the fridge. Consume within four weeks. 


Tip: For a variation of taste you can add chopped orange peel or some grated fresh ginger.


In radiant health - passionately raw - Dominique

Dominique Allmon©2014

      

Saturday, September 27, 2014

Pak Choi Salad With Sweet And Sour Dressing

Pak choi (Brassica campestris L.) is a member of the cabbage family. It is known by many different names, including bok choy, horse's ear, Chinese celery cabbage and white mustard cabbage. The texture of both leaves and stalks is rather crisp; the flavor falls somewhere between mild cabbage and spinach. Very young pak choi can be eaten raw, older specimen taste better when briefly sauteed.


Pak choi is rich in beta carotene, calcium, and the vitamins C and K. Like any member of the cabbage family, this mild Asian cabbage contains anti-oxidant compounds  such as thiocyanates, indole-3-carbinol, lutein, zeaxanthin, sulforaphane and isothiocyanates. These compounds can help to protect against certain cancers including breast, colon, and the prostate cancer. They can also help lower the "bad" (LDL) cholesterol levels in blood.  

Young Pak Choi

Ingredients:  

for the salad
  • pak choi
  • 4 plums
  • 2 spring onions 

 Sweet and sour plum and ginger dressing

for the dressing
  • 1/4 cup sesame oil
  • 1/4 cup virgin olive oil
  • 2 ripe plums
  • juice of 1 lime
  • 1 small hot red chili pepper (add more if you prefer)
  • 1 inch ginger root
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1/2 tsp pink Himalaya salt


Method:
  • Clean and wash pak choi. Separate individual leaves from each head and dry thoroughly. 
  • Cut off the white part of each pak choi leaf and chop it as you would chop the celery rib. Toss into a bowl.
  • Wash the plums, cut in halves and remove the stones. Chop each plum into small chunks and mix with the chopped pak choi. 
  • Clean and wash the spring onions. Chop and mix with the other salad ingredients. 
  • Using a blender whiz a dressing using all the dressing ingredients. Adjust the taste to your personal liking. Depending on the size of your lime and the ripeness of your plums you may need more lime juice. If the dressing is too sour you may add a bit of raw honey. If the dressing is too thick, add a little purified water.
  • Pour dressing over the salad and mix well.
  • Arrange green pak choi leaves on a platter and add the dressed salad. Garnish with chopped spring onions and chili pepper. Enjoy in good company!

In radiant health - passionately raw - Dominique


Dominique Allmon©2014

         

Thursday, September 25, 2014

How to Sprout Chickpeas

Sprouting is essential! Sprouting breaks down the anti-nutrients and enzyme inhibitors and makes the valuable nutrients bio-available. 

Sprouting removes the phytic acid. Phytic acid is a compound found in seeds, grins and legumes. It binds to calcium, magnesium, iron, copper, and zinc making it almost impossible for us to absorb these nutrients. Phytic acid also irritates our digestive system. Soaking and sprouting effectively removes phytic acid and makes seeds, grains and legumes easily digestible.

Chickpeas are very easy to sprout. You do not even need a sprouting jar!

 Soaking chickpeas (garbanzo beans)

To sprout chickpeas follow these simple instructions:
  • Rinse the dried chickpeas with clean water.
  • Put them into a bowl and pour enough purified water to completely cover the chickpeas. Allow to soak overnight.
  • Next morning rinse and drain the chickpeas. Use a sieve. Return them into a bowl. Cover the bowl with cheesecloth or a tea towel. Place the bowl in a moderately warm place away from direct sun.
  • In the evening rinse the chickpeas and return them into a bowl. Cover the bowl again and let it sit overnight.
  • Repeat this action the next day, in the morning and in the evening. Repeat again.
  • By the third day your chickpeas should have developed sprouts that are long enough. You can extend the process for another day if you wish to, but keep in mind that your chickpeas will become bitter the longer the sprouts. 
  • Give the chickpeas another rinse and drain them again. They are now ready for storage.

 Sprouted chickpeas (garbanzo beans)

To store them you must completely drain them and place them in an airtight container. They will be good for the next two or three days if you keep them in the fridge. Remember that it is better to sprout small amounts of chickpeas and eat them as fresh as possible. Nutrients deteriorate when sprouts are stored for too long. Do not eat them when you notice that sprouts are turning brown.

Sprouted chickpeas can be added to raw salads, used in smoothies, vegan burgers, soups and stews, or turned into dips and sauces. Use your phantasy and experiment. It really is fun!

In radiant health - passionately raw - Dominique


   

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Spicy Aged Raw Macadamia Nut Cheese

Last month I published my Spicy Aged Raw Macadamia Nut Cheese recipe. I have made raw nut cheeses before, but this was my first attempt at aging a nut cheese. Much can go wrong if all you are using is your intuition. 


By now, the cheese was aging for almost a month and today I decided to find out whether my energy was wasted. To my astonishment, the cheese turned out better than I expected and I can imagine that it would improve even more if I allowed it to age for another month or so.

My cheese has a texture of a Spanish Manchego cheese or a young Parmigiano Reggiano. The rind is edible, though. My cheese does not crumble and it cuts very nicely. Most importantly, it is absolutely delicious! 


This is quite encouraging and I decided to produce a whole variety of nut cheeses in the near future. I will use my basic nut cheese recipe. The variation of taste will come from different nuts, herbs and spices, as well as from a different lengths of time that I will allow for my cheeses to age. This is important. The longer they age, the dryer they become and the taste gets stronger.


If you have not yet tried a raw nut cheese recipe, you probably should brave it and give it a try. Raw nut cheeses are a wonderful addition to a raw food menu. They are a great alternative to pasteurized milk cheeses, provided of course, that you are not allergic to nuts. And believe me, once you have started your own cheese "production" there is no stopping you! Your own success will be your motivational force to go on creating your own original recipes.
In radiant health - passionately raw - Dominique

Spicy Raw Macadamia Cheese recipe here

         

Sunday, September 21, 2014

End Of Summer Blackberry And Pear Smoothie

This is such a simple and delicious end of summer recipe. Pears are ripe, blackberries abundant. As the days are getting shorter and the nights colder, I added raw honey and ginger to support my immune system. If you are a vegan you may want to choose a different sweetener, but keep in mind that no sweetener can ever match the healing properties of raw honey.

Foraged wild blackberries

Ingredients:
  • 3 ripe pears, cored (I used very juicy Williams pears)
  • 1 cup blackberries (fresh or frozen)
  • 1 cup almond milk (freshly made if possible)
  • 1 inch ginger root
  • 1 Tbsp raw honey 
  • 2-3 ice cubes (skip if you are using frozen berries)


Method:
  • Blend all ingredients until smooth.
  • Serve it tall glasses and enjoy in good company!

In radiant health - passionately raw - Dominique


     



Friday, September 19, 2014

Raw Vegan Cucumber Bites

Cucumbers are so versatile! They are perfect for all kinds of raw recipes. Their rather neutral, mild taste and a firm texture allows you to use cucumbers in many creative ways. They can perfectly replace crackers in cocktail canapes and make wonderful finger food. My Cucumber Bites recipe is here to inspire you. Be creative!

This is a vegan recipe. I used my herbed raw cashew nut cheese. If you are not a vegan and have an access to raw milk cheese, use it instead of the nut cheese.


Ingredients:
  • 2 large English cucumbers, carefully washed to remove any wax residue
  • 1 cup creamy raw nut ricotta cheese (use more if needed)
  • 1/2 cup chopped mixed fresh herbs (dill, mint, parsley, cilantro, basil, tarragon)
  • 2-3 spring onions
  • juice of 1/2 lemon
  • 1/3 cup virgin olive oil
  • 1/3 tsp dried oregano
  • Celtic sea salt
  • freshly ground pepper to taste


Method:
  • Cut cucumbers into 1.2 inch (3 cm) thick slices. Using a small spoon scoop out part of the core leaving the bottoms intact. They should resemble small cups.
  • In a large bowl (or a food processor) mix the nut ricotta, herbs and all the other ingredients. Reserve some of the chopped herbs for garnish. Mix well until creamy.
  • Using a pastry bag, fill out the cucumber "cups" with the her-ricotta mass. 
  • Set cucumber cups on a platter and garnish with fresh herbs. Serve chilled and enjoy in good company!

 
Cucumbers are a valuable source of antioxidants including Vitamin C, beta-carotene, manganese, quercetin and kaempferol. These compounds help fight free radicals in the body. Research also shows that compounds in cucumber can help alleviate inflammation by inhibiting pro-inflammatory enzymes such as COX-2. The most recent research demonstrated that a cucumber compound called Cucurbitacin B kills up to 96% breast cancers cells in vitro. Cucurbitacin B is also effective in suppressing lung cancer, prostate cancer and the cancer of the pancreas.


In radiant health - passionately raw - Dominique

Dominique Allmon©2014


            

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Raw Pistachio Nut Milk With Rose Water And Cardamom

I love pistachios! The green nuts are not only tasty, they are good for your health. The most recent scientific research has shown that pistachios significantly reduced the LDL (bad cholesterol) levels in serum increasing the levels of the HDL (good cholesterol) at the same time. Researches also observed increased blood levels of such antioxidants as the lutein, alpha-carotene, beta-carotene, and Vitamin E (especially the gamma-tocopherol form). The green nuts also provide significant amounts of B Vitamins and copper.

 Pistachios and Cardamom Pods

Raw, unprocessed pistachio nut are not very easy to obtain, but if you are able to find them in your grocery store, use them as often as you can. 

Unlike most nuts and seeds, pistachio nuts do not require any soaking. However, to make my pistachio milk, I soaked them overnight. They swell up a bit and are easier to process.

I did not add any sweetener, but you can add raw honey if you want to.

Fragrant Pistachio Milk

Ingredients:
  • 1 cup raw pistachios
  • 2 cups purified water
  • 1 Tbsp wild green cardamom pods
  • 3 Tbsp rose water

Fragrant Pistachio Milk

Method:
  • Soak pistachios in water overnight.
  • Wrap cardamom pods in a small piece of cheesecloth and soak them overnight in 2 cups purified water.
  • Next day, rinse the nuts and place them in a food processor.
  • Remove the cardamom pods and pour the fragrant water into a blender. Process until almost creamy.
  • Using two or three layers of cheesecloth or a very fine sieve pour the mixture into a jar. Squeeze as much water as you can.
  • Add honey and rose water and mix well. Chill the milk for at least one hour.
  • Serve chilled and enjoy in good company!

Tip: Store this fragrant pistachio milk in the fridge and consume within two days. Drink it straight or use it to make a smoothie. Do not overdose the rose water or your milk will acquire a soapy taste. I was very lucky to discover incredibly tasty ayurvedic rose water in Germany. It is made by Cosmoveda and it tastes like nothing I have ever tried before! I also used wild green cardamom pods that are incredibly fragrant. Do not discard the soaked cardamom pods. You can use them to spice any nut milk or add them into a pot hot water. Use the water to make fragrant tea. Also do not discard the pistachio meal. You can use it as a base for delicious smoothie, to make raw cookies, or raw chocolate truffles.

In radiant health - passionately raw - Dominique

The Ingredients

Dominique Allmon©2014

         



Monday, September 15, 2014

Chilled Grapes in Citrus Juice

Grapes definitely are in season! Why not take an advantage of the abundance and make something nice? I found wonderful organic grapes in the farmers' market, but they were not seedless. Removing the seeds was a rather tedious affair and I did not remove all of them. The seeds I was able to remove without destroying the grapes were used in a "beauty" project. I crushed them into a coarse meal and mixed the meal with honey. I used this sweet, thick paste as a body peeling. A bit decadent, you may say, but definitely enjoyable and chemicals free.

Organic grapes

Ingredients:
  • 1 1/2 cup white grapes
  • 1 1/2 cup red grapes
  • juice of 1/2 lemon
  • juice of 1 large orange
  • juice of 2 limes
  • 2 Tbsp raw honey
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4  tsp ground vanilla or a few drops of organic vanilla essence
  • zest of 1 organic lemon


 Method:
  • In a large bowl mix all the juices. Add honey and spices. Mix well.
  • Wash and dry the grapes. Slice each grape into quarters. Throw sliced grapes into a bowl with citrus juice and mix well.
  • Cover the bowl and place it in the fridge. Allow to chill for at least 30 minutes. 
  • Remove the bowl from the fridge. Add lemon zest and gently mix the grape salad. Serve and enjoy in good company!

Chilled Grapes in Citrus Juice

Tip: Try a variation of this delicious fruit salad: use freshly pressed grape juice instead of orange juice and add a tea spoon of orange blossom water. Unforgettable!

In radiant health - passionately raw - Dominique

Dominique Allmon©2014


Saturday, September 13, 2014

Green Salad With Leeks And Sprouted Chickpeas

If you asked me, I never made the same salad twice! I might have used the same ingredients but always came up with something new. This is what makes salads so exciting. And what is even more wonderful, people who do not normally eat raw foods would eat a nice salad from time to time.

I used leeks in this recipe.  Leeks are incredibly healthy and good for you. Like garlic and onion, they are members of the allium family. They contain unique combination of vitamins - especially vitamin K and folate; minerals - especially manganese;  flavonoids; and sulfur-containing compounds. They are support you cardiovascular health, help reduce chronic low-level inflammation, help balance blood sugar and offer protection against certain cancers including cancer of the colon.


Ingredients:
  • 1 Romain lettuce
  • 1 cup sprouted chickpeas (sprouting instructions here)
  • 2-3 leeks, sliced
  • 1 small zucchini, peeled and chopped
  • 2 spring onions, sliced
  • 3 Tbsp chopped dill
  • 1/2 cup virgin olive oil
  • 3 Tbsp raw cashew nut butter 
  • juice of 1/2 lemon
  • 1/3 tsp Celtic salt
  • freshly ground black pepper to taste

Method:
  • Roughly chop Romain lettuce and toss it into a bowl. Add chickpeas, leeks, spring onions and dill. Mix gently.
  • In a small bowl whisk the dressing. Adjust ingredients to your personal taste.
  • Pour dressing over the salad and mix well.
  • Serve right away and enjoy in good company!
Tip: I used chopped zucchini in this recipe but you can replace it with cucumber, jicama or kohlrabi.

In radiant health - passionately raw - Dominique

   

Thursday, September 11, 2014

How to Choose a Juicer

People who are new to raw food or juicing often ask me how to choose a juicer. This is not an easy question. I always suggest that a person should buy the best kitchen tool he or she can afford. 

 Mine! - Breville Juicer

As with everything you will either use your juicer daily, or keep it out of sight, in its original box where it will never see the light of the day. Buying a "right" juicer can make a big difference.

People who are new to juicing are horrified how much food is wasted after a juice has been made and get discouraged very quickly. They might still use their juicer from time to time when they feel that they need to detoxify their bodies, but they would rather use a blender. But juice is not a smoothie and blenders do not separate fruit or vegetable pulp from liquid. They liquify all the ingredients and keep the indigestible fiber in the blend.

If you want to drink a pure juice you will have to use a juicer of some kind. The more powerful the juicer the better the juicing experience. You can trust me on that. I owned few juicers that broke down rather quickly before I decided to invest in a very powerful one. I bough a Breville centrifugal juicer that came with 1200 Watt motor and 35 years warranty! Unfortunately this juicer is not very well suited for juicing wheat or barley grass, but it is wonderful with all kinds of fruit and vegetable.

To juice wheat grass you will need a masticating juicer. My husband bought a Champion juicer with a special attachment that makes grass juicing possible. This is another powerful juicer that will last for many years. It is very expensive but you can also use it to make wonderful ice cram out of frozen fruits. Additional attachments allow you to grind grains and seeds into flours.

His! - Champion Juicer

Both juicers are easy to assemble, easy to operate and easy to clean. Many people get discouraged when they realize how tedious it is to clean up a juicer they bought. Yes, the juicer must be "dismantled" and washed after juicing, and the sooner you wash it the better. 

Both juicers eject the pulp into receptacles. The Breville juicer has one that is incorporated into its design. The Champion juicer ejects the pulp into a bowl that has to be placed near it during juicing. Believe me, ejection of pulp into a receptacle makes such a difference! My first juicer did not eject the pulp and I had to stop it few times during juicing to remove the pulp from the juicing basket. This was quite messy and I did not really enjoy it. I bet, you would not either.

My suggestion is, look around before you spend any money. Visit a store and ask for demonstration. Merchants who really want to sell their products are happy to show you how their juicers work. Ask friends what juicers they are using and what it their juicing experience.

Once you have chosen a bought a juicer you will end up with the juicer's dilemma: What to do with all the pulp that remains after juicing. Like many other people who love juicing I came up with few recipes that utilize the pulp. To find out more, read my article How to Save Money With Juicing. Also, check out the recipes that are listed under the label "frugal recipe." But if you do not feel like using the leftover pulp, you can always compost it. 

Each juicer comes with its own recipe book, but once you start juicing you will create your own delicious recipes. No juice will ever taste the same and you will never buy a bottled juice again.

One last thing, I know people who make juices with their blenders. They blend all the juice ingredients and let the blend pass though an nut bag or a mesh of some sorts. If you can afford only one kitchen tool at this time, a high speed blender would probably be better for you. The juice making would be a bit laborious, but you will still be able to make a juice when you want one.

In radiant health - passionately raw - Dominique

Dominique Allmon©2014

         


Tuesday, September 9, 2014

3 Delicious Avocado Salad Dressings

When seasons are about to change I am usually adding more avocados to my daily raw meals. Avocados are rich in immune system supporting zinc. This is something to consider well ahead before the cold season.

There are many ways to eat avocado. One of the easiest is to slice it up a serve it on a bed of crispy lettuce leaves. If you have more time at your hands you can turn nicely ripe avocados into delicious salad dressings. I hope you get inspired.


~ Creamy Lemon Pepper Avocado Dressing ~

Ingredients:
  • 1 avocado
  • juice of 1 small lemon
  • zest of 1 small lemon
  • 2 Tbsp virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp freshly grind black, white and pink pepper
  • pinch Celtic sea salt to taste

Method:
  • To make the dressing place flesh of ripe avocado in a food processor. Add lemon zest, olive oil, and lemon juice. Process until smooth.
  • Add salt and freshly grind pepper. Blend again. You may need to add more lemon juice if your dressing turns out too thick. If you think your dressing is too acidic, add 1 Tbsp of purified water and whiz again.

~Spicy Orange Avocado Dressing –

Ingredients:
  • 1 avocado
  • juice of 1 navel orange
  • juice of 1/2 lime
  • 1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 spring onion, chopped
  • 1 small green chili pepper, seeded and chopped (optional)
  • 1/2 tsp Celtic sea salt
  • freshly ground black pepper to taste

Method:
  • In a food processor blend avocado, orange juice, lime juice and olive oil. Blend until well combined.
  • Add salt and pepper. Blend again. Adjust the taste to your personal liking.
  • Add chopped spring onion and green chili. Mix well. 

~ Avocado Garlic Cilantro Dressing ~

Ingredients:
  • 1 avocado
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 Tbsp fresh cilantro, chopped
  • juice of 2 limes
  • 2 Tbsp virgin olive oil
  • pinch Celtic sea salt
  • freshly grind black pepper to taste.

Method:
  • Whiz all the ingredients in a blender until well combined.
  • Add more salt or pepper if needed. 


Use this simple, but delicious dressings on salads or as dips. To make the dressing a bit thicker use two avocados in each recipe. Enjoy in good company!

In radiant health - passionately raw - Dominique

Dominique Allmon©2014

   


Saturday, September 6, 2014

The Ruby Red Juice

Sometimes a simplest thing is the best thing. Take two or three ingredients and you have a perfect juice, smoothie or a salad.

I love to create simple recipes that allow for add-ons. My Ruby Red Juice has only three ingredients, but if you add ginger or hot pepper you will have a completely different gustatory experience. Give it a try!


Ingredients:
  • 6 beets
  • 6 large carrots
  • 3 large sweet potatoes


Method:
  • Wash and trim the vegetables. If you are using certified organic produce you can leave the peel on. 
  • Depending on the type of juicer you are using you may have to chop the ingredients into manageable chunks.
  • Feed the juicer and collect the juice in the receptacle. Pour the juice into glasses and enjoy in good company!

Tip: The leftover vegetable pulp is deliciously sweet. Add chopped nuts and seeds, raw cacao, raw honey, and spices and make energy bars in a dehydrator.

    In radiant health - passionately raw - Dominique



    Wednesday, September 3, 2014

    Spicy Raspberry Cacao Smoothie

    This smoothie is magical! It has a very particular taste as a blend of its ingredients and yet, you can still taste raspberries and cacao in it and they are not overwhelmed by hot chili. This is intentional.

    Using the same ingredients, but replacing hot chili with fresh mint will give you an entirely different sensation. Add 1/2 cup fresh mint leaves and blend. Garnish with fresh mint leaves and enjoy whenever you need a clear mind. Mint seams to work quite well. Give it a try. 


    Ingredients:
    • raspberries (fresh or frozen)
    • 1 small hot pepper, chopped (seeds removed)
    • 2 Tbsp raw cacao
    • 1 ripe banana
    • coconut water
    • pinch pink Himalaya salt
    • 2 Tbsp raw argan oil ( use hemp or flax oil if raw argan oil is hard to come by)
    • 2-3 ice cubes if you are using fresh raspberries

    Method:
    • Blend all ingredients until smooth.
    • Garnish with fresh raspberries and enjoy in good company!

    In radiant health - passionately raw - Dominique

       


    Monday, September 1, 2014

    Green Spinach And Apple Smoothie

    You have to be very quick when you are using apples in raw recipes since sliced apples oxidize very fast. They turn brown faster than you can spell the word "apple." To prevent the from turning brown I use ice-cold water mixed with the juice of 1/2 lemon. I also add fresh lemon juice to my raw apple recipes.


    Ingredients:
    • 2 apples (I used Granny Smiths)
    • 1 cup baby spinach
    • 2 Tbs green superfoods powder
    • 1 1/2 cup coconut water
    • juice of 1/ lemon for soaking
    • juice of 1/2 lemon for the smoothie
    • 1 tsp liquid stevia (or a sweetener of your choice)
    • 1 tsp cold pressed flax oil
    • 2-3 ice cubes

    Method:
    • Cut apples into wedges and put them into a bowl with ice-cold water and lemon juice. Immerse them for a few minutes.
    • Place all the ingredients in a blending jar. Add apples and blend until smooth.
    • Pour smoothie into glasses and enjoy in good company!

    In radiant health - passionately raw - Dominique

             

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