The door is closed, the lights are out

scary-looking-potato

Can you feel the christmas luuuuv?

… and the butter’s getting hard — yep, just like in the song by System Of A Down. I did give the Datella recipe another go, this time adding a tablespoon of coconut butter. The texture wasn’t powdery anymore; more on the oily side. And after one night in the fridge, well, my spread wasn’t so much a spread as a big block of chocolate-y fat. Sad face!

Still delicious, but 1. hard to spread  and 2. you could definitely taste the coconut. I love coconut, but I didn’t intend my datella to taste like it, so… *shrugs*

What else? I bought Medjool dates. Next time I feel like being a food snob, somebody beat me with an empty purse until I take a long, hard look at the price tags and go for Deglet Nour…

No recipe to share yet, but I’m leaving you with the silly above picture and two words: pea and pod.

… oh, and a happy new year. ❤


Datella and hello, one reader

It’s been so long since I last visited the blog’s admin board, I’d forgotten my supah-dupah-complicated password. And of course I could not get it back using the ‘retrieve password’ function, since the email account I used has been hacked… karma’s a bitch.

Anyway, this is a long way of saying, wow, I have *not* been a faithful poster. Guess I’m not cut for the Life of a Food Blogger. I’m good with that, since I have no mad photographing skills, no mind-blowing culinary talent… just a humble desire to share the food I make for myself, and the few knowledge nuggets I stumble upon, be it in the real world or online, ya know? As do most small food bloggers, I guess.

So. Let’s see if I can last a bit longer this time.

For starters, I thought I’d share this vegan ‘Nutella’ recipe I first tried a few years ago, from the website Time4tea.

old-fashioned date spread

Lazy me & the date-spread… now with photoshopped hipstamatic effect!

It’s simpler than most recipes I’ve seen, but of course I had to go and try to make it even more simpler… it’s no OMG ABSOLUTE WIN!, so I’ll let you guys check the original recipe (in french), which calls for 250ml dates. I can not, for the life of me, remember how I figured out how many dates to use the first time I made it. *insert puzzled face*. Anyway, you’re supposed to boil them in water for 3 minutes. I didn’t have any fresh dates on hand, but I had date spread, so I went and decided that 150g of it would do the trick. Into the food processor went the date spread, along with the hazelnut butter and cocoa powder.

Verdict? I should have stuck to the original recipe. Don’t misunderstand me, my ‘quickie’ attempt is delicious, but the texture is a bit off: too powdery. I tend to get that a lot with my food processor… should have gotten a blender, goddamnit. Next  time I’ll try adding some coconut oil to make it more creamy and spread-able (yup, still too lazy to pit and boil fresh dates — they’re sticky!).

Still… delicious. I ate four pieces of ‘Datella’-smeared toast for breakfast.

If you’re curious (and can read French), Time4tea has a shitload of yogurt recipes, including banoffee, dulce de leche, Daim (the Ikea candy)… the latter is making me drool a little, but I don’t have a yoghurt maker. Which is just as well, since I’m trying to cut down on both dairy and mock-dairy products (emphasize on “trying”…).

Until next time — and yes, I’m sure it won’t be another eight months (ouch!).


Indulging my sweet tooth

Hai guys! Hope your week’s coming along nicely. Mine hasn’t really begun yet — work doesn’t start until tomorrow, meaning I have time to edit my pictures from the week-end, and maybe write down a post or two… and do laundry, but you don’t want to hear about that. Or do you? I do use soap nuts, so this could be of interest for an eco-friendly blog.

Until then, have some raw recipe tweaking:

Mango smoothie

Eeexcellent.

Mango Smoothie, adapted from the best of Raw — serves 2

2 oranges, peeled and cut in chunks • 1 mango, pitted, peeled and diced • 2 frozen bananas cut in big chunks • lemon juice • 1 tbsp ground flax seeds

Blend. Serve. Make stupid happy noises.

My first real, honest to god fruit smoothie! I was so proud. It was super creamy. The texture would have been even better using a blender (my motto these days… should have picked a high-speed blender instead of a food processor, damn it), but still… delicious!

PB truffle babies

Super easy PB truffles… there is some good in this world after all!

Peanut Butter Truffle Babies, adapted from CCK Hot Cocoa Fudge Babies

20g cashews • 85g dates • 1 tbsp peanut butter • 1 tbsp cocoa powder

Blend until smooth (I had to scrape down the sides of the bowl a few times until the right texture was achieved — it looked a bit powdery, but it held its shape alright). Roll into balls, or shape in bars, refrigerate, and enjoy!

I’d say “that’s it”, but smoothie & PB truffles deserve better, don’t you think? I’ll be back with pictures from South France and some rambling… later. Take care, and indulge your sweet tooth, too.


Hey, … never mind.

I should probably stop making excuses for my lack of posting, since I hardly have any reader… Perhaps the whole writing in English isn’t helping, but I feel like I’m not cut for those long, introspective posts. Not that I have done many of them since I started this blog anyway. Thus, here’s a quick list of the new foods I’ve been poking at lately:

Zucchini pasta

Zucchini pasta, the no-spiralizer way!

Zucchini pasta, obviously. I topped them with cooked, store-bought tomato sauce. EVIL, no doubt, but delicious. Plus I added home-grown sprouts, surely that has to count for something.

Raw soup. It was… weird. Green and oily. Maybe I went crazy, between the oil and the avocado. I had to wash it down with crackers.

Baked conservation burgers, using Gena’s recipe: warm, but still moist. They turned out okay, but I enjoyed them better the day after, atop a green salad.

Healthy vegan fudge, recipe by Chocolate-Covered Katie, using CCK’s trademark coconut banana butter. YUM

Raw gazpacho, two ways: one really yummy in spite of its AWFUL color (think vomit and you’ve nailed it), using cucumber and tomato sauce; and another one with zucchini and tomatoes that was a big FAIL.

Chocolate breakfast smoothie using 1 frozen banana, 1 heaping tbsp almond butter, 1cup water and 1tbsp cocoa powder. Quite tasty, and filling enough! I’m so out of the blog thing, I didn’t even think of documenting it. I think I was too busy cleaning the mess I’d made by preparing it in the small bowl of the Magimix.

In addition to flirting with veganism/raw foods, this girl now thinks she’s a runner. I kid you not. She even bought those flashy, ugly as hell running shoes! OH NOES! what is the world coming to?

Also, reading further through the raw food blogosphere — there are some seriously hilarious pages out here, and tons of raw food self-proclaimed gurus. Hard to know what to believe. I should probably update my blogroll…

Hope you’re all looking forward a nice week-end, mine will take place in South France. The city we’re visiting is said to have some raw sweet treats available in stores. HA!


You’d better get this blender started

Howdy, you excellent yet short-numbered people! How’s your week been? Mine included new raw stuff. I think a happy dance is in order.

coconut butter

not thick, and not creamy. sad face!

I’ve been reading a whole lot of new blogs lately, including Chocolate-Covered Katie. Holy shit batman! Her coconut butter recipe was screaming my name from across the internet (and many others’, I’m sure), and I went home craving the stuff like whoa. Sadly, I didn’t use enough coconut shreds right away, and it took me ages (about an hour from start to finish) to get something that looked remotely like Katie’s coconut butter. That, and it turned rock solid in the fridge. Nothing a little stay next to the oven didn’t change, though. If you haven’t gotten around topping banana soft serve with Ricki’s healthy chocolate frosting like I told you to… 1. are you for real? 2. please do and top the topping with a healthy spoonful coconut butter. You can thank me later; last night’s guests certainly did. /brag

And now for some big raw!me news, I finally went ahead and made myself a smoothie yesterday. Not just any smoothie, either — a green smoothie! Whoohoo! As for the recipe that I used… can you guess? That’s right, Gena’s Green breakfast banana pudding. Only mine wasn’t so much of a pudding: too thin for that, hence the smoothie announcement. Heh.

Anyway, it went a little something like this:

my first green smothie

Behold Green Smoothie the First. Like green soup… only not.

Breakfast in a green bowl — serves one
4 fistfuls greens (I used salad and baby spinach) • 1 frozen banana • 2-3 tbsp sesame oil • a small glass almond milk • 2 tbsp ground hemp seeds • a pinch of cinnamon • water

Put the goods in your blender/food processor… and blend. That’s it.

Note for later: I really have to give the ‘blender’ piece of equipment a try. The smoothie was nice, but it could have been smoother. The thing is, I’m not too trusting on this one. I see where you’re supposed to put it, but I don’t get how it’s gonna help with the texture… Oh well.

Yeah alright, but what about the taste? Well, it was surprisingly sweet. The smell gave away the blended greens more than the taste did. And there was definitely a hint of cinnamon every now and then – lovely. I wasn’t sure how long it would keep me full,  but I had trouble finishing my bowl. And it did hold me until lunch time, four hours later. I can’t wait to try another recipe!

And I should probably find more than just a few in my last purchase: Stefano Momentè and Sara Cargnello’s Solo Crudo. Impressed by my extensive knowledge of the Italian language? Don’t be; I purchased the French edition. Speaking of language differences, am I the only one amused by the name of the authors’ website: Veganitalia?

Have a great Sunday!


I got milk

soaking almonds

Soaking almonds -- lazy bastards have been doing it for 20 hours or so!

So I despoiled the Magimix with almond milk, just like I said I would. It was fun to do — no wait… it wasn’t! Stupid food processor was on, but of course I didn’t know it until the top clicked in place and the motor started running at once — splashing the surroundings a bit in the process. Grmbl. Note for later: always press the “stop” button before I start. And maybe I should have used the pulse function first, because my almond pulp turned out grittier than I thought it would be, judging from other people’s pictures.

processing almonds and water

almondy magic in the making.

The straining part, on the other hand, was fun. I had no cheese cloth, no paint strainer, nothing, so I used a good old’ sieve, and a spoon to press the pulp and force the milk through. Pulp was saved for later use and I took a nervous sip of my first batch. Not bad. It was on the thin, almost watery side; the flavor wasn’t as strong as it was in my last purchase… which is good. I like almonds, but I hate almond extract and its bitter-sweet flavor. I think next time I’ll use a different ratio (I used Gena’s for my first try – yeah, I know, big shock – one part almonds for four parts water, and a dash of salt), see if using less water achieves a texture closer to actual milk. As in, closer to milk as I remember it… never been one for cow’s milk. Over cereals, yeah, and in hot chocolate, but cold, right-out-of-the-fridge milk? Thanks, but no thanks. Perhaps I’ll use the rest of the batch to whip up some hot chocolate for the BF and me. ❤

final product

Tadaaaa~

Also, must find a way to use the pulp. Since I don’t have a dehydrator, and I’d like to keep it raw, cookies are not an option, but I’m thinking maybe a porridge for breakfast. I’m pretty sure it will involve cocoa… but that’s another story.

Done re-reading Kris Carr’s book; I’m actually considering doing the 21 days cleanse sometime during the summer. I’d like to be in shape for September… and it might just be the kick in the butt I need to finally go gluten-free, see if it does me any good.

On a final note, I’m excited to see that there are French pages about raw food, and sexier than the books I’ve been able to find so far, too. Woohoo!


Bits of french countryside

No raw food under that title, no sir. Another super busy week — or maybe I’ve just done a poor job at balancing my priorities. Anyway. The freshly cleaned magimix stands in all its shining glory on the kitchen counter. Now to put it to good use…

Until then (later this week, me thinks), have yourself some pictures taken during the week-end:

Mmm. Nothing too spiffy about this way of displaying pictures… but it’ll do for now.

Almonds are soaking on my kitchen counter right now, so chances are I’ll be despoiling the magimix with almond milk rather than raw soup. Raw soup should come a close second though — I have baby spinach and avocado in the fridge…


Back; vengeance-free, but raw-oriented.

Last time, I complained about real life being demanding, etc., but the truth is, I fell off the extra, non-mandatory activities wagon. No more blogging, little to none exercising — until I read Gena’s Top ten tips for new bloggers. If you haven’t read them yet, go and do that now. And if you have, then you can probably tell they ignited a pang of uneasiness about the whole not-posting-cause-im-so-damn-lazy-thing…

SO. No post, no running, but I did get a few things done since the last time I checked this place.

No shampoo

Shampoo(s) & conditioner.

# Got on the no-shampoo wagon.
Remember: some time ago, I got pretty excited about this post on (neverhome)maker, but I wanted to give it a real go before I blogged about it. Well, I’ve been using this method for almost a month now, and while I can’t say that it’s made my hair healthier, it hasn’t made it worse, either. I have yet to find a way to take care of it that doesn’t leave my scalp all itchy. More hair-related adventures ahead of me, I guess.
Has anyone tried the no-shampoo way? Did you manage to achieve a thick, paste-like texture? Mine’s more watery-with-stuff-lying-at-the-bottom. Could the poor quality of my baking soda be causing it?

Raffa's book

Raffa's Book: Le Grand Ménage (Spring cleaning)

# Started making my own housecleaning products.
Go me, if I dare say so myself. I’d been using white vinegar for a while now, but let’s face it — white vinegar alone doesn’t cut it. At least not for my bathtub. So here I was, trying to find a way to scrub the damn thing clean that wouldn’t involve too many chemicals… when I stumbled upon this baby (left), in a used books store, and it featured this terrific recipe:

All-purpose disinfectant from Raffa’s book ‘Le Grand Ménage
2 tbsp baking soda • 2L hot water • 1 tbsp white vinegar • 3 tbsp essential oils (pick EO whose properties are suited to cleaning, such as Lemon — Citrus limomum, Pine — Pinus sylvestris or Tea tree — Melaleuca alternifolia)

In a 2L opaque can, mix the baking soda and the hot water.

In a glass, mix the white vinegar and the essential oils. Pour in the can; shake before using.

To clean your bathtub without breaking a sweat, simply mix one small dose of the disinfectant (use the can’s cap as a measure) with a handful washing soda in HOT water, and get started with your favorite sponge. Be sure to wear gloves, as the washing soda can cause skin irritation. This worked wonders for my sad, dirty bathtub!

Raffa’s book is available in PDF form for free. If you can read french and are interested in green cleaning, her booklet is a must-have! Also, her website is filled to the brim with tips regarding body care, hair care, etc.

#Got hooked on Raw.
Okay, maybe not hooked, but very interested for sure. I try to eat raw foods with every meal, and there’s definitely a change in how I feel. My digestion is much smoother, I’m less bloated… I said that the dehydrator was a bit too pricey right now link, but I did go ahead and got myself a food processor. YOWZA! A bit pricey, too, but I ordered it online and got a discount. Heh heh. Besides, there are recipes I simply couldn’t make with an immersion blender… nut butters, raw soups, here I come~! On the downside, the stupid thing weighs a ton, and I nearly killed myself dead bringing it back home. My arms were so sore from the carrying, I left the package in the entrance for the boyfriend to marvel at. No opening, no pictures! No choice though — home delivery in France is a pain in the ass. Half the time, the delivery guy doesn’t bother ringing your bell and simply leaves a note saying that since you were not home (even though you were), you’ll just have to go and pick your package from the mail office. Why thank you, public and not-so-public service. Anyway.
I’ve been browsing both Gena and Kristen’s recipes, trying to decide what to make first, and right now I’m thinking raw soup. More greens sound like just what I need — not to mention tasty.

Also, I started re-reading Crazy Sexy Diet. I love it! it’s so funny, informative…enlightening even. Yup. Imagine — this book is what it took for me to finally break out the juicer that’s been dusting on my shelves for more than a year now. It’s also one of the reasons behind my purchasing a food processor: after reading so many mentions of green smoothies, I really felt like I was missing something…

Oh yes — I see many raw experiments in the coming days. I won’t ask you to stay tuned, because I haven’t done the best job of being faithful to you four readers… but I promise I won’t go ten days without posting. Until then,

… mmm. Raw soup.


Brocc hippie

 

Big brocc

I mean, really.

 

Wow, talk about delayed posting! To make it up to you, I thought I’d open today’s edition with the sight that greeted me on my last grocery raid: an open-armed, welcoming head of broccoli (complete with his little hands thrown in the air). Isn’t he cuuute? Or am I just seeing things?

Okay, maybe I am; at least I’m having fun. Back to food! I woke up on Sunday morning with a chocolate craving… and in serious need of something new. So I made a variation on Ashley’s Chocolate Buckwheat Bake, using quinoa instead of buckwheat, water instead of almond milk, no cinnamon but one tsp each of carob and cocoa powder. Also, I added 1 tbsp of ground pumpkin seeds. Don’t ask… I got my recipes mixed up, thought I was making Ricki’s Carob coconut sweeties. *shifty eyes*

 

Ze quinoa cookie monster.

The boyfriend liked it; I cleaned up my plate. Mark my words, ugly as it may be, this cookinoa is a keeper!

 

Real life is a bit demanding right now, but I’ll be back soon with a no-shampoo review and tried tips for natural house cleaning. I know… sexy.


The power of Raw vs. fantasized pizza

 

Avocarobn prior to blending

Two years ago, I would have barfed thinking of chocomole. Now the sight of it makes me drool (and I think the green/brown color scheme here is super pretty). Help meee!

Not only is my grocery store out of sweet potatoes, they also stopped selling my favorite brand of cocoa powder. Sad face! Since the other ones looked rather fishy to me, I decided to pass on the cocoa. But I really, really wanted chocomole… so I went for the next best thing and made avocarob. The boyfriend loved it and declared it tasted a bit like tiramisu. I’m not sure what creates this peculiar taste — the mix or carob and vanilla, maybe? I like the original, plain ol’ chocolate version better, but this one’s worth a try for any chocolate-meets-coffee lover out there!

Vegan Mocha Pudding

Ta-daaaa.

Vegan mocha pudding — serves two
2 small ripe avocado
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 1/2 tbsp carob
1 tbsp agave syrup
water (optional)

Blend, baby, blend! If, like me, you’re using an immersion blender, you may need to add a little water to smooth things up. Keep in the fridge until just before serving.

I’m done reading Crazy Sexy Diet. Boo! But I feel like reading it all over again already… and trying the 21-day cleanse, perhaps. But first… clean the damn juicer that’s been sitting on my shelves for so long.

Today’s breakfast included banana chards wraps, and some reading: Kristen’s introduction to Raw Foods. I was really interested, and curious to give raw foods a real go, but as the weather got darker, I got this craving for pizza and thought how bad I would miss the crunchy feeling of cooked dough. (Not drooling as I’m typing this… nope.) I know the dehydrator makes it possible to create raw crusts and crackers, but this option sounds a little scary right now, not to mention pricey… We’ll see.

Later!