Grapefruit Margaritas

Grapefruit Margarita Recipe1 large grapefruit
2 limes
Tequila (to taste)
Stevia (3 packets)
Ice

 

 

If you are going to enjoy a cocktail, you may as well make it as healthy as possible (don’t worry – these still taste awesome). Peel one large grapefruit and place into blender along with the juice of 2 limes, 3 packets of stevia and tequila (amount is up to you). Blend this first until completely smooth. Top off the blender with ice and blend again until the ice is fully incorporated. Enjoy!

Continuous Kombucha Brewing

Continuous KombuchaAfter the success of the first kombucha brew, I decided that it would make sense to brew the kombucha continuously. This basically means that you have a larger batch going in a container with a spigot so the drink can be removed without disturbing the scoby. I decided to use the Anchor Hocking 2 gallon Heritage Hill jar (mostly because I like how it looks). So far it is working quite well with no leaks and the plastic spigot won’t react with the kombucha. I made sure to clean the container thoroughly and rinse the inside with a vinegar-water solution before adding the kombucha mix.

Ingredients for 2 gallon setup:

28 cups water
2 cups starter tea left over from last batch
2 cups sugar (I used coconut palm sugar)
16 tea bags (I used organic green tea)
Scoby

Be sure when adding the first batch of tea to your container, don’t add hot water directly as it could cause the glass to break. You could add 10 or so cups of cold water or tea to the container first before adding the warmer tea to help ease the temperature change. Allow the tea to cool to a much more lukewarm temperature before adding your scoby as the hot water won’t be good for the scoby either. When adding replacement liquid for later batches, make sure the sugar-tea mix has cooled to room temperature before pouring over the scoby.

While some people will continuously take the kombucha directly from the container at varying times throughout the fermentation process, I plan to remove what I intend to drink during the 2 week fermentation process and leave the rest in the jar. Even though I used palm sugar in place of white sugar, I still don’t want to add any extra sugar into my system than necessary.

Visit http://www.culturesforhealth.com/kombucha-continuous-brewing-system for additional continuous kombucha brewing tips and recipes for other sized batches.

Stuffed Peppers – Vegan & Gluten Free

Vegan Stuffed Pepper Recipe2 large organic red peppers
1 package mixed mushrooms
1 package shiitake mushrooms
1 cup cooked quinoa
1 cup organic pico de gallo salsa
Salt and pepper to taste

Wash the peppers and slice along their natural grooves to form cups. Remove any seeds (save and dry for your garden) and set aside. Place the mushrooms into a skillet coated with coconut or olive oil and cook well. Add in the quinoa and salsa and cook until warm. Mix all the stuffing ingredients well and stuff into the peppers. Serves 2.

Kombucha Tasting

Kombucha Tasting

Kombucha made with palm sugar does indeed have a slightly more sour taste than kombucha made with cane sugar, but in my opinion it tastes quite good.  I chose to use the palm sugar purely for its health benefits and am happy I stuck with that decision in the end.  Now I just need to start the next batch and order a larger container to make this in.  To make your own kombucha, you can use our recipe here:  http://liskabora.com/kombucha-tea-recipe/

Pea Soup Recipe – Vegan and Gluten Free

Gluten Free Pea Soup RecipeIngredients:
8 cups water
2 cups dried split peas
2 onions, diced
2 stalks celery
1 sweet potato
1 clove garlic
1/4 cup green onions, diced
2 tbsp lemon juice
1 tbsp smoked paprika
salt and pepper to taste.

Place the onions, celery, garlic and green onions into a blender with just enough water to blend properly. Once completely smooth, place into a soup pot with 8 cups of water, the sweet potato, lemon juice, smoked paprika (mimics meat flavor found in traditional pea soup), and 2 cups of dry split peas. Simmer on low until the peas have completely cooked and begin to fall apart. Mash the sweet potato evenly into the soup. Add salt and pepper to taste. This is a wonderful, hearty soup, for a cold day.

St. Patricks Day Leprechaun Parfait

Leprechaun ParfaitFor those of us who want a healthy and naturally green treat for St. Patty’s day, I present to you the leprechaun parfait. This would make a wonderful breakfast or dessert for this special day in March.

Filling:
2 avocados
1/2 cup coconut cream
1/8 cup lemon juice
1 orange
3 tbsp vanilla extract
4 packets stevia

Topping:
4 kiwis, sliced
1 cup pistachios, crushed

Place a can of coconut milk in the refrigerator for a half hour or so to allow the liquid and “cream” to separate. After it has separated, remove only the thick white “cream” from the top and set aside the liquid for use in a smoothie or other recipe later. Place the coconut cream into the food processor along with the meat from two medium sized avocadoes, 1/8 cup of lemon juice and 4 packets of stevia. Mix until smooth. Peel an orange and add to the mix along with 3 tbsp of vanilla extract. Process again until smooth.

Pour a small amount of filling into the bottom of the wine glasses. Top with a layer of pistachios and a layer of sliced kiwi. Add the remainder of the filling to each glass before adding a final layer of topping.

Kombucha Tea Recipe

Kombucha RecipeToday was the day for our new scoby to begin its life as a kombucha maker. Since I didn’t have a 1 gallon container, the little guy had to be split in two to fit into two half gallon batches. Hopefully that won’t hurt anything.

The tea for each of the half gallon batches contained the following ingredients:

1/2 gallon water
3 organic green tea bags
1 inch piece of ginger
1/2 cup organic palm sugar

I let this mixture steep for 1 hour and cool completely before removing the tea bags and ginger. It was at this point that I added the scoby and existing kombucha juice that it was living in to the two jars. I saved the ginger in the freezer to add back to the kombucha post fermentation for additional flavoring. Fermentation should take 1-2 weeks.  I will post an update once we get there!  Test your Kombucha with a ph strip or meter before your first taste,  it should be at a ph of 3.0 when complete.

See our post on Making a Kombucha Scoby for information on how to make your own scoby from store-bought raw Kombucha.

Cream of Mushroom Soup – Vegan

Cream of Mushroom Soup - VeganIngredients:
2 cups flax or coconut milk
2 cups mushrooms, sliced
1 yellow onion
1 sweet potato (optional)
1/2 cup water
Salt and pepper to taste

 

If you choose to include a sweet potato (I used a sweet potato in place of the traditional white potato because it is healthier, but for a more authentic taste and look you could use a white potato), be sure to cook it first. Add the cooked sweet potato into a food processor along with the milk, onion, mushrooms (if you want a smooth soup) and water. You can keep the mushroom slices whole of course if you prefer them that way.  Process until smooth and transfer all the ingredients to a pot.  Add salt and pepper to taste.  Simmer on low until cooked through and serve immediately.

Green Goddess Dressing – Vegan

Vegan Green Goddess DressingIngredients:
1/2 cup vegan cheese spread
1/2 cup coconut milk
1/2 cup parsley
1/4 cup chopped green onions
1/4 cup lemon juice
2 tsp capers
1 tsp black pepper
salt to taste

First make the cheese spread using the recipe here: Vegan Cheese Spread Recipe and measure out 1/2 cup.  Place all ingredients into a food processor and blend until smooth. Serve over salad or vegetables. Leftovers may be stored in the freezer for later use.

Vegan Cheese Spread

Vegan Cheese Spread RecipeI am not a very fussy person, so this is not a fussy recipe. I have tried almost every gluten free version of vegan cheeses that exists and while some of them taste ok, I am not a fan of the ingredients list on most of them. This is a homemade cheese spread recipe that can work well for some recipes that call for cheese or a cheese spread. If you took the time to dehydrate this it could even be sliced. Some day when I have extra time to spare I might try that, but for now this will suffice. :)

Ingredients:
1 1/2 cups nuts (I used raw cashews) soaked overnight. You can use plain water, or this is also a great use for the coconut water left over after using the cream portion of a can of coconut milk for other recipes.
1 clove garlic
2 tbsp lemon juice
2 tbsp nutritional yeast
salt to taste

Place all ingredients into a food processor and transfer into tart or cupcake molds once smooth. The molds you select should be based on the portion sizes you intend to use it for later. Allow to set up in freezer and you can then unmold them and keep any portions you don’t use immediately in the freezer for future use. The molds not only keep the spread in usable portions, but it makes for a lovely presentation as well.

You can use this as a base for dip, in place of cheese or mayo on sandwiches, or as a spread for crackers or veggies. It could easily accept additional flavors as well if you wanted to make it tex-mex, or onion flavored. Enjoy!

From a family member that has been hard to convert: “This is better than any of that $hit you bought at the store.” I guess it must be a win. :)