8 April 2013, 12:25
This might sound silly, but I’ve been intimidated by green juice for a really long time.
I know it’s a nutritional powerhouse; that by drinking it, you practically turn into Catwoman. I know that it’s a huge part of the raw food diet, and that all my heroes guzzle it daily. But when it comes to lifting a glass of the stuff to my lips? Let’s just say, I’ve never been keen on it.
A couple of weeks ago, Mike and I were browsing Netflix, when I randomly flicked onto Hungry For Change. Two minutes later and we were utterly engrossed, nodding our heads at the screen and talking about it as it played.
Now, very little of what they said was news to me. I started experimenting with raw food at the start of 2008, and ate like that for a while. Well, until I moved to NYC by accident (I came over for a party and decided to stay), and realised my apartment was directly above one of the best pizza places in Manhattan!
Not too long after that, I met Mike, and despite my frequent jaunts to The Juice Press, my attempts to eat raw have mostly been cast to the wayside. When the love of your life grew up on barbecue, burgers and Coca-Cola, he’s usually not terribly keen to join you for a slice of raw cheesecake!
Maybe it was because we had just completed the Clean Program, so trying something new on the health bandwagon didn’t seem very extreme. Maybe it was my husband’s impending birthday, or the swirling of the stars in the sky… Maybe it was a combination of all of these factors. But the morning after we watched Hungry For Change, something amazing happened.
I watched, incredulous, as Mike rescued our juicer from underneath the sink, set it on the counter, and started to juice everything we had in the fridge. Kale, Swiss chard, cilantro, parsley, spinach… In it all went.
And the results were delicious!
So here is his super-simple recipe. I like to think of it as “green juice for beginners”, because the green juice you buy elsewhere is usually so savoury and grassy that it just puts you off!
Note: You will need a good juicer to make this drink. We have the Breville 800JEXL which we adore, but the best-selling juicer on Amazon, the Breville BJE200XL, gets great reviews, and is less than $100!
(I wanted to call it “magical” but he insisted on “mighty”... Go figure!)
Half a bunch of Swiss chard
Half a bunch of kale
Half a bunch of Italian parsley
Half a bunch of cilantro
Half a bunch of celery
Half a cucumber
2 cored Granny Smith apples
2 peeled lemons
1 piece of ginger
Half a teaspoon of sea salt
Half a teaspoon of cayenne pepper
Wash all the vegetables before you juice them. Don’t just juice one ingredient at a time — if you combine them together, you’ll get a better yield.
Be sure to drink it as quickly as you can: the longer it sits out, the more it oxidises, and loses its nutrients. Also, swirl it around in your cup as you drink, so it doesn’t settle!
This juice has a good kick to it, and it tastes light and fresh. It doesn’t taste like vegetables at all, it’s just crisp and toothsome! We realised the other day that it tastes like a Bloody Mary, just without the vodka! So tasty.
I’ve been absolutely fiending for green juice since I’ve been away from home, and found a great source at Lifefood Organic, which is mercifully close to where we’ve been staying! Have you ever tried green juice? I’d love to hear your thoughts!
Gettin’ my green on,
P.S. I know I’ve said it a whole lot recently, but Hungry For Change really is as good as I’m making it out to be. Watch it!
16 June 2009, 14:40
This was written by my friend Jess of Sugadeaux. Based in Melbourne, Australia, Jess is a true connoisseur of all things sweet & sugary, & her recent travels around the USA have been a never-ending test of her taste buds. We thought it was time for her to share her discoveries with the world. Here they are.
Having spent the last 2 months in the United States (including a guest baking stint in Austin), I now consider myself somewhat of a dessert aficionado. Often, tourists tend to be better experts than locals – it’s not exactly sustainable to visit a different bakery every day in the city where you actually live!
I started on the West Coast and ate my way to the East and back again. I sat at tables with friends, a pile of cupcakes before us, critiquing the flavour, texture, moisture, adjudicating with all the seriousness of a professional wine critic.
Chatting to Gala about my sweet, gooey discoveries, it occurred to us both that it would be cruel to withhold this information from her nonpareils. So I put in the eating time, and now present to you my top 5 sweet experiences from across America (in no particular order):
Cherry Pie Bars at Sugar Mamas Bakeshop in Austin
Wow. Just when I thought I couldn’t cram any more sugary sweets into my friends’ mouths in Austin, my house-mate became addicted to these bars. It didn’t matter how much or what he had eaten prior –- he would not agree to pick me up from the bakery unless I could guarantee him at least two bars. The bars feature a gorgeous sweet crust base, glistening bright red cherries that easily qualify as food porn, criss-crosses of white glaze and crumbled streusel as a topping. They’re a super fun take on an old school pie, and obscenely good. And only $2.25 each. Ridiculous.
Red Velvet cupcakes at Buttercake Bakery in Los Angeles
I’m not kidding –- I ate more red velvet this trip than you will possibly believe. And I cannot believe how many places screw it up. Usually it’s either just red vanilla cake, or the texture is wrong. And please East Coast bakeries, red velvet cake is SUPPOSED to have cream cheese frosting. Don’t try to reinvent a classic. I was thrilled when I bit into the red velvet cupcakes at Buttercake. Creamy frosting, dense moist cake and it actually tasted like red velvet! For the uninitiated, red velvet should have a hint of buttermilk/vinegar to cut sweetness and a light cocoa flavour. If it tastes like nothing, it’s not real red velvet!
Ben & Jerry’s Stephen Colbert’s Americone Dream ice cream in New York
Firstly, I’m sorry NYC. I tried a bunch of cupcakes. Some I didn’t like, most were fine. But none shook my world enough to make the list. However, in the Wholefoods I did pick up a pint of the aforementioned B&J ice cream, and couldn’t stop asking others if they had tried it. Classic vanilla ice cream swirled with caramel and dotted with chocolate covered waffle cone pieces. Plus you get Stephen Colbert on the packaging. Pundit-sexy. The bonus of this entry is that hopefully most of you will have the chance to try this one for yourselves.
Crème Brûlée at Jacques-Imos in New Orleans
Most people go to Jacques-Imos for the shrimp and alligator cheesecake (not a dessert!). And lord knows, I certainly ate my fair share of regular food here (I do recommend you check out their website and freak the hell out on their unusual creole/Cajun menu choices). Serendipitously, though I was beyond stuffed, the kitchen sent our table out a complimentary ramekin of awesomeness, including the best brûlée I have ever tasted. The bottom of the plate was practically black with vanilla bean flecks. The custard was silky, the sugary crust cracked perfectly under my spoon. Get there at 5.30pm to guarantee a seat, and do not eat anything the night before unless you want to be rolled out.
Salted Caramel Macarons at Paulette in Los Angeles
Okay, I’ve had macarons. I’ve made macarons. They’re really cute, but sometimes I feel a little “take it or leave it” about the actual flavour. Paulette’s macarons made me see the light. Rich, semi-chewy macarons which bite perfectly and don’t crumble in your hands. The caramel is luscious, thick and gooey, dangerously dark with a hint of salt to excite the palate. They also have flavours such as green tea, rose water, passionfruit and well I could go on. You can pretty much never bother to try a macaron unless you’re offered one from here (or Paris).
25 August 2008, 22:39
All cuteness aside,
This cupcake defeated me.
I ate just two bites.
Super-rich mud cake
Does not a good cupcake make.
A very sad truth.
For six dollars fifty, you
would be forgiven if you
Dark chocolate & raspberry cupcake – $6.50 – Tempt, Wellington.
9 June 2008, 14:32
The essentials. Yes, fabulous shoes are an essential!
Going away on holiday is fabulous. There are hundreds of things to see, great food to eat, intense shop-a-thons, amazing parties, delicious food, mind-blowing art galleries, little streets to explore, fabulous food…
Yes. Like it or lump it, eating is a huge part of the travelling experience. We all need food to live, but we’re never so aware of this fact as when we’re on holiday. Usually you just eat at your desk or make some toast & watch television, & don’t give it a lot of thought. But when we’re trawling the streets for treasures, walking miles a day & staying in a hotel room, it seems like we need constant nourishment. Stopping off at every pizza joint, bakery, ice-cream shop & hot dog stand in your destination is expensive, not to mention unhealthy.
So what about those of us who have experienced the glee of raw food? How are we supposed to eat while we travel? What can we do to make our travels less of a trip to the bloat buffet & more energising, fulfilling & fun?
I hate to say this, but a lot of it comes down to your level of self-control & how you view food. Do you see it as the enemy, or just something your body requires? For me, if I see a cupcake, I’ll buy it & eat it. I don’t believe in dieting, & I had such a restricted view of food for years that these days, I’m pretty chilled out about what I eat. I don’t do guilt over cupcakes, ice-cream, cookies, whatever. I think that if you want it, you should eat it. Being on holiday is pretty much the extreme end of the scale, presenting thoughts such as, ‘Oooh, world famous cake? I better have a slice, since I might never come back…’
However, I also know that if I gorge myself on pizza, bread, pasta, whatever, I don’t feel very good afterwards. My energy slumps. I feel sluggish. My skin performs its own ugly little dance. I get grouchy & I think, “Ugh, I need to eat more raw food”.
Because being on holiday (or “vacation” as you Americans call it!) is so taxing, & because there’s always so much to do at any given moment, the key is to making eating raw as easy as possible. It needs to be even more easy than at home, because odds are good that you’re not going to have your usual things with you. The items in my kitchen that I took for granted, like balsamic vinegar, a blender, salad bowls & sunflower seeds, are going to be in short supply in a hotel room or a sublet apartment. (My kitchen in New York has tools but nothing else.)
The first & best thing you can do is to hunt out a juice bar in your local area. Use Google, ask locals or if you’re in the United States, utilise the power of Yelp! (I love Yelp.) Don’t be tempted to order juice from the hotel — it will be something like $6 for orange juice. Not very economical & you can get one that’s much larger & better for you for about the same price. Find the juice place, & decide to make it your morning routine. When you wake up, maybe even before you do anything else, chuck on some clothes (& dark sunglasses if you don’t look too fabulous first thing in the morning), make your way down there & order yourself a mammoth green juice. It doesn’t need to be all greens but at least ask them to throw some spinach in there. You can’t taste it, it will give you a huge energy kick & your body will soak it up lovingly.
if you have a big ol’ juice in the morning, you’ll find that it will keep you going for quite a long time. Most raw foodists who have been “in the game” for a while find that a decent green juice in the morning means they don’t even think about eating again until late in the afternoon — somewhere around 3 or 4 o’ clock. Though of course, your body may work differently, & you should always eat if you’re hungry!
The second thing I would recommend is hitting up your closest health food store for some vitamins. If you don’t normally take them, now might be a good time to start. Holidays, while typically considered relaxing, can be anything but. People to meet, places to go, lots of walking to get there… it can be exhausting! Couple that with the fact that it may be warmer or cooler than you’re used to, you’re probably drinking less water than usual, & your eating habits are a bit unsettled, & it’s a recipe for feeling run-down. A lot of raw foodists believe that if you’re eating raw you don’t need any supplements, but I’m not sure I agree. I have been taking a women’s multi-vitamin & three Omega 3 tablets every day for a couple of years now, & it has made a huge difference to how I feel day-to-day. I often feel like my brain doesn’t operate at full power until I’ve had my Omega 3 capsules.
Omega 3 capsules don’t need to be fish oil. They can be, if you really really want, but it’s not compulsory. I buy flaxseed oil ones & they work just as well. You may not be able to buy your regular multi-vitamin brand, but speak to someone in the shop & see what they recommend. The other day I bought vitamins that are made wholly from raw food, which is amazing to me, & they’re great.
While you’re in the health food store, you might like to pick up any superfoods or other supplements that you like to have on hand. Then you can just throw them in your juice or whatever works for you. I recommend buying it all when you arrive, not before. Trying to import food into a foreign country can be a nightmare, & if you’re trying to get it into somewhere like Australia or New Zealand, you’re going to be upset when they biff it all in the bin.
I am a huge snack lover & I much prefer to snack on small things throughout the day than have occasional big meals. You’ll make things much easier on yourself if you have bits & pieces scattered throughout your room/apartment/suitcase to eat. As well as saving time — I mean, going out in hunt of breakfast every morning? What a time-suck! — you’ll be less inclined to buy a slice of the incredibly tasty & tempting pizza next door.
What makes a good snack? Well, fruit is the best thing. It’s small, cheap, portable & easy to get your hands on. Pre-chopped vegetables are great too — you can buy them in the fresh section of any supermarket, & they’re trivial to throw in your purse & eat during the day. Other than that, you’ll be surprised by what your nearest health food store carries. I have been amazed to find all manner of packaged raw food snacks, like chocolate/coconut/almond bites, chocolate, crackers & nuts. Even more incredibly, a lot of those things I discovered in a supermarket in Gainesville, Florida — so it can be done!
Stock up. Keep a bag of raw nuts on you at all times. They’re good for you & will help tide you over when you get peckish.
Remember to make an effort to drink lots of water. It keeps you feeling energised & fresh, & helps your brain stay alert. It can be easy to forget to drink water, especially when you’re walking for miles & miles & don’t want to lug a huge bottle around with you. Unfortunately, if you leave it at home, by the time you return at the end of the day, you’ll probably be grumpy & dehydrated with a headache. Not the most fun thing!
Buy yourself a water bottle & start toting it around with you. Glass bottles are the best, though they also tend to be the heaviest & have the highest pain-in-the-ass factor, since they can break quite easily. Stainless steel bottles are probably the next best thing, & companies like Sigg make really cool ones that come in a multitude of sizes & patterns. After that would be plastic, which is best avoided.
Find some places that serve the kind of nosh you’re into. Soystache has a list of raw food restaurants around the world, but We Like It Raw trumps all with a Google map of raw food restaurants in America, a New York-specific map, & a raw food restaurants section on their site with constant updates on new joints to check out worldwide. Woo!
Decide to eat a real raw meal out at one of these places two or three times a week. You will have some incredible meals this way. There will be some misses, too, but it’s all part of the experience. Sit down, savour the food, enjoy yourself. Sometimes raw food restaurants are expensive, that’s true. But honestly, you’re on holiday, food is pretty much always going to be one of your biggest expenses, & you might as well spend the dough on food that is going to make you feel GOOD rather than awful. Make the right choice for your body!
When you’re not out wining & dining, assess your neighbourhood to see what you can use to make yourself meals. If there’s a greengrocer, you might like to start making yourself salads. This can be a little labour intensive though, & there’s nothing to say you shouldn’t just eat a cucumber & a bunch of grapes. You may also choose to up your juice intake & just have one solid meal a day.
Being prepared & flexible
It’s really up to you, but I think the key is to be prepared. Imagine yourself as a girl or boy scout, & think ahead of time. If you only ever leave your house to buy a meal, eat it & then go back home, next time you’re hungry you’re going to be in the exact same situation. Do some shopping, stock up on things you like & know you can eat, & then you’ll never be in that desperate, frenzied, slightly rabid stage of hunger where you could eat anything as long as it might fill the gap!
It might also help to regard your holiday as just that — a holiday. Not an opportunity to prove yourself to the Raw Police! Of course, when you find something that works for you, it makes sense to stick to it, but if you’re stressing out about finding bee pollen when you could be meeting new people, dancing & swooning over architecture, then you might as well have just stayed at home. Allow yourself exceptions. My exception will always & forever be cupcakes. I just love them. This is not to mention the times that you’ll go out to dinner or lunch with a friend & the only thing that looks slightly raw is a salad that consists of some limp lettuce leaves, two pieces of tomato, an olive, an enormous pile of cheese & a litre of creamy dressing. Eep!
Just chill out. Having a sandwich won’t kill you. I always feel like if raw isn’t on the menu, something vegan is my next best bet, followed by something vegetarian, & then ye olde normal food. But hey, you don’t have to be a saint, & you don’t have to prove yourself. I say, if you want to eat something, eat it. Pepperoni pizza, a chicken sandwich, macaroni & cheese… what the hell, why not? Life’s too short to give yourself an ulcer over what you’re eating. Just enjoy it, & remember to focus on the brilliance of what’s really happening: you’re travelling!
Note: Obviously, if you’re staying in a rural area, you might need to cover your bases early. You’ll probably need to be more self-sufficient, & stock up before you go! Really though, just remember to be flexible. When I was in Norway a couple of years ago, I stayed in a cabin in the middle of nowhere with someone else’s family. They served whale for dinner. I really didn’t want to eat it, but I also didn’t want to be rude & there was no other food in the house, so my options were pretty limited. I ate some of it, fought off the impulse to gag, devoured the vegetables they served alongside it, & tried to fill up on soft drink. Situations like this are going to present themselves sometimes, & we just have to do our best.
Extra For Experts:
Raw On The Road by raw model, Anthony.
How To Travel In The Raw, a check-list.
Juicing On The Road — tips from the Juice Feasting Prince!
Airport Musing From Sarma, the owner of Pure Food & Wine in NYC.
2 May 2008, 00:14
Cold temperatures are rife across the world at the moment, so here’s a raw hot chocolate recipe from Emrys Tetu, our official iCiNG Transformation Challenge sponsor!
For a rich raw chocolate treat you can enjoy any time, and especially for warming up on a cool day, try this deliciously easy hot chocolate recipe:
1/2 cup hot water (just heated to hottest comfortable drinking temperature, not boiled)
1 tablespoon raw coconut butter or oil
1 tablespoon raw wild honey, preferably local
1-2 tablespoons raw almond butter
3 heaping tablespoons raw cacao powder
1/2 teaspoon raw vanilla powder or 1 teaspoon other form of vanilla
Pinch whole sea salt
In a blender, combine the above ingredients until smooth, adjusting all to your palette’s preference. This makes a concentrated chocolate sauce, which you may then dilute and enjoy with others (it would be quite a lot for one person all at once!) or save in the refrigerator for use as desired. Before serving, thin the sauce by at least half with more hot water. I usually drink this at about 1 part the above recipe to 3 or 4 parts additional hot water.
By only heating the water to hottest comfortable drinking temperature the recipe remains raw, but is still satisfyingly hot chocolatey. Enjoy this healthy treat with my best wishes for your health and happiness!
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