Tag Archives: kale

Recipe: Honey Crisp, Kale & Persimmon Salad

What do you get when you cross shredded raw winter greens with delicious crispy apple and sweet orange persimmon?

Well the answer is simple. Your newest favorite winter salad!

This fresh & nutritious bowl of delicious has become mighty popular in the meal rotation these days, as there is usually a few kale leaves & brussels to be found lingering in my crisper along with two of my favorite winter fruits that are always in my fruit bowl this time of year.

Toss in a handful of toasted pumpkin seeds and drizzle with that luscious pink hued dressing, and this salad is a winter dream come true.

If you are new to persimmons, it is never too late, and you can thank me later for introducing you to this naturally sweet gem of a fruit. My favorite variety by far is the common Fuyu variety, which is flat and stays firm when ripe. The entire fruit is edible, including the skin, and there are no seeds inside – only the sweet flesh. YUM.

The Less:

Fewer cooked foods in your diet means more living enzymes and untarnished nutrition. Less lettuce based salads means eating local through the winter is always possible (especially if you live in BC). Less obvious ingredients means a surprise in your salad bowl, so trying new ways to eat fresh foods becomes common.

The More:

More high fiber raw salads means more great help for your digestion. More enzymes & pectin from fresh apples means easy filling and breakdown in your tummy. More satisfying sweet fruits throughout the day means less cravings for sweets elsewhere, so natural sweetness is all you need.

Honey Crisp, Kale & Persimmon Salad:

  • (1) cup shaved raw Brussels sprouts
  • (1) cup shredded raw green kale
  • (1/2) large Honey Crisp apple, skin on & chopped to one inch dice
  • (1) Fuyu persimmon, skin on and sliced and chopped to uniform size
  • (1/4) cup lightly toasted pumpkin seeds (pepitas)
  • (1/4-1/3) cup Incredible Cranberry Orange Dressing

Start by toasting the pumpkin seeds in a hot oven (350 degrees) for 3-4 minutes until fragrant and turning brown (careful not to burn them!). Set aside to cool while you prepare the remaining ingredients.

Combine all of the prepared vegetables in a mixing bowl and toss gently, reserving some persimmon pieces for the top. Add the dressing and gently mix until the ingredients are well coated. Top with remaining persimmons & serve immediately.

This is easily one of the yummiest salads I’ve enjoyed in a while and I simply can’t get enough of raw winter vegetables like kale and Brussels sprouts. Both are just so nutritious and fill me up in a wonderful way that makes me feel good all day! Add together with the amazing qualities of the Honeycrisp apples (so good if you have not tried this apple variety), and the sweet and satisfying persimmon, you can’t go wrong!

  • What is your favorite way to eat persimmon?
  • What is your favorite apple variety?

Wishing you all the very best as we soldier on into the first official Holiday weekend. It is a hectic time of the year indeed and it’s easy to get stressed! Breathe deeply, be mindful, and enjoy... πŸ™‚

Yours in Less,

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43 Comments

Filed under Cooking, Dressings, Food, Gluten Free, Recipes, Rich & Simple, Salads, Savory, Vegan, Vegetables, Vegetarian

Recipe: Apple, Kale & Hemp Seed Green Smoothie

Easy, clean eating to fuel your body.

Don’t major in minor things.

~ Author Unknown

Okay, I admit it. Sometimes I am a mess.

And no, I don’t mean in the kitchen (but I am that too and I LOVE it).

I mean, I worry. I try to worry (just a little) less at times, but catch me at a bad time late at night and it’s game over.

I worry about my schedule, or I worry that the kids won’t have the strength they need to stand up to a mean kid at school. I worry about the tall tree in the neighbor’s yard that might fall on the house in a windstorm, and I worry that I could get sick with some scary awful disease and leave my kids and my husband all alone (completely unwillingly of course).

Now please don’t get scared, I am not going somewhere dark or deep here.

I’m just saying, I think it’s in us all to worry, right? And we should be responsible, and do our diligence by living healthily and reducing our reasons to worry needlessly.

Here is the world. Beautiful and terrible things happen. Don’t be afraid.

~ Frederick Buechner

So cue the checklist to healthy living.

Eat well (check). Live well (check). Exercise (check). Laugh (check). Give thanks (major check) Give yourself regular breast exams.

Silence.

Am I the only one that is (so far) dangerously lax in this department?

This week I decided to take action on that front & was quite terrified when I actually found something. It was indeed a painful lump in my armpit (SO tender!).

It was late at night at the time of this discovery, time for bed. After my discovery and the inevitable irrationality of thoughts that followed, a little visit to the Mr. Internet SelfΒ  Diagnosis department, and more irrationality (there may have been tears & attempts to hide them from the husband), I finally fell asleep.

Like I said, I am a mess sometimes. But aren’t we all? (And it WAS late).

The miracle is not to fly in the air, or to walk on the water, but to walk on the earth.

~ Chinese Proverb

Waking up that morning I vowed to be better. To check more often, and to visit the doctor more often. After all, I am in the prime age for this kind of stuff, and statistics show 1 in 8 of us will be diagnosed with breast cancer during our lifetime.

Shira you owe it to your family to do a better job (check).

After several hours of worry that morning, trying to work but only really thinking of my sore armpit (it was really really sore), and (maybe) a call to work announcing that I’d found a scary evil worrisome lump (in my pit), I managed to see the doctor in the clinic.

Even waiting there in that room (evidently the very same room almost 10 years ago that I learned I was pregnant the second time), I was a mess. Biting back tears, I explained my case.

I told the lovely doctor about the discovery, and about how I’d rubbed that lump extra hard to see just what kind of lump it was. I told her it really hurt (it really did).

When she didn’t seem to look worried, I started to (maybe) feel like it wasn’t going to be so bad.

Then when she asked me to take my shirt off and started poking around under my arm, I pretty much realized it was going to be okay.

The Less:

Less worry and more action means you can spend energy on real matters. Less avoidance of important issues means more facing things head on. Fewer reasons to fret needlessly means more calm in your center, so making room for thoughts that are fruitful comes easy.

The More:

More action on health issues means fewer reasons to lose sleep. More calm, confident feelings means more rational sound thinking. More healthy food and healthy thoughts means more wholeness and good, wholesome living. So the need to worry can go out with the compost.

Apple, Kale & Hemp Seed Green Smoothie:

  • (1) organic apple, seeded and chopped
  • (1/2 – 1) avocado
  • (1-1.5) cups mango juice, (or apple juice if you don’t have access to mango)
  • (1) tbsp hemp hearts
  • (3-4) leaves green kale
  • (3-4) ice cubes, if desired

Blend all to a creamy consistency and enjoy immediately for full health benefits. Don’t worry though if you do need to blend it and enjoy it later..it will still be good for you (but maybe not if you worry too much about it) πŸ˜‰

This makes a generous amount that can easily feed 2-3 hungry people, but if you are at all like me, this could be just for one worry-free wonder woman (or man) as well. I often use this as my main daily sustenance until late afternoon, which means I have no problem enjoying the full recipe over the course of the morning.

Today was good. Today was fun. Tomorrow is another one.

~ Dr. Seuss

Turns out, I managed to strain a muscle in my armpit. I learned from the very nice doctor lady that there aren’t any nodes in there, but there are a lot of tendons (apparently ones that don’t like being pressured frenetically late at night).

I’d rubbed the heck out of that node the night I discovered it and caused myself a whole lot of pain for no other reason but to give myself a little wake up call.

I’m glad it was all okay.

And I don’t wish for the day when it isn’t. For anyone out there that has had a scare, or (heaven forbid) has been through cancer, I was reminded this week of how lucky we all are to have our health.

Only a few things are really important.Β 

~ Marie Dressler

How can something bother you if you won’t let it?

~ Terri Guillemets

I don’t know how I strained my armpit, and it doesn’t really matter, the point is, I am going to be okay (it’s all healed now too so that’s good). For now, at least, and that is worth celebrating, and protecting, every day.

And I hope you are too.

So don’t delay on giving yourself some well-intentioned attention. Check yourself regularly, and eat well. Go to the doctor for check ups, and try not to worry (I think it comes with the Motherhood territory and having a majorly over-active imagination).

Surround yourself with friends that care about you.

And treat yourself to a green smoothie. Just be careful not to strain any muscles while tearing up your kale πŸ™‚

That’s for you, JY and MN πŸ˜‰ Love.

Yours in Less,

62 Comments

Filed under Cooking, Gluten Free, Raw, Recipes, Rejuvenation, Rich & Simple, Snacks, Sweet Treats, Vegan, Vegetables, Vegetarian

Taking Cues from Country Folk & Removing My Shoes

Start by removing all pretense, then your shoes.

Earth provides enough to satisfy every man’s need, but not every man’s greed.

~ Mahatma Gandhi

I went, I saw, I ate, I reveled. I went home.

Freshly back from a visit to the country, my senses are still reeling from the sights and sounds of water, birds, soft grass, good clean food, laughter and plenty of pure unadulterated stillness.

A typical weekend visit to the family home means (weather permitting) farmer’s market visits, long runs in the quiet breezy air, and plenty of ocean-side time to the sounds of lapping water and the odd speed boat off in the far salty distance.

There, my phone doesn’t work, and neither do I.

This time of year, there is bounty in the gardens. Meals come from the yard and ingredients are picked not days, and not hours, but just minutes before preparing (and eating of course!).

Back home during the growing season, planning meals is as much about what is ready as it is about what your appetite tells you (actually quite a bit more).

Peas come and go for three weeks only, the strawberries show their bright faces only long enough to remember their soft red cheeks, and (thankfully) the kale grows for many prosperous and green months on end.

It’s a different (and refreshing) way to look at food.

I hope you’ll humor me as we walk through the garden and take (just a few) extra moments of island time.

Tension is who you think you should be. Relaxation is who you are.

~ Chinese Proverb

I always start by removing my shoes. The grass feels better that way, and somehow, everything seems just that much more beautiful. And real. Something about dirt in my toes.

Sometimes there isn’t an entire pints worth of strawberries left to pick and you have to enjoy what there is (these were the last ones saved for my daughter to pick).

This simple example (to me) embodies the ‘less is more’ lifestyle with crystal clarity – enjoying what there is when it is and making it last.

I won’t try to deny these strawberries were most thoroughly enjoyed. Yes, all 5 of them.

Whenever you are sincerely pleased, you are nourished.

~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

A quick (slightly disappointing) visit to the local grocery store offers a stark contrast to the bounty that is seen on display at the Farmer’s Market.

There at the market you can meet the guys who make your white chocolate scones and work through the night to make your loaf of daily bread.

Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants.

~ Michael Pollan

It brings a new appreciation for where your food comes from – to see the hands that create the food for your nourishment and to lay eyes on the mouths that smile from a life of honest work.

For those of us who are blessed to live where produce grows in abundance, it seems an easy choice to buy (and eat) local.

Here in the city if I miss the Farmer’s Market, I’ve got a great grocery store in just about every neighborhood I can hit up as I need.

In many smaller communities this often isn’t the case. So more and more communities are relying on themselves, and on each other.

There are many communities across the globe who don’t have this…..yet.

After a visit like this, I return feeling more resolved than ever to work towards ways to bring food security to everyday people. Like me, (maybe) you, and (maybe) our neighbors.

There is just too much capability for abundance not to.

It is not always the same thing to be a good man and a good citizen.

~ Aristotle

It seems so easy.

1. Grow food.

You need soil. You need seeds. Add a little sunshine and diligent watering and watch it grow.

I didn’t get my veggie garden in this year, as I mentioned there is just so much abundance all around me, there is no urgent reason not to support those who are working hard to produce amazing food for the region right now. It’s on the list, but for now I am happy to support those who are already in the game.

2. Cook it.

Prepare your meals with love. Plan around what there is. Use what you have, and what you can reasonably afford.

Maybe even tuck (just a little) away for someone else. Who knows? It’s all up to you, and to us as a whole, if we decide.

3. Eat it.

Eat with mindfulness if you can. Chew with gratitude. Swallow with awareness, and look your meal-mates in the eye. Talk with one another. Fully be. Wherever it is you may be.

4. Be nourished.

Being nourished is about so much more than just good food. Start with a helping of healthy, homemade vegetables & proteins, add a generous sprinkle of gratitude & and a moderate side of humility, and enjoy the fruits of your (or someone else’s) labor. After all, it is surely delicious. Isn’t it?

These are the simple things we can do.

From what we get, we can make a living; what we give, however, makes a life.

~ Arthur Ashe

I want to take a moment to thank all of the supporters of this blog. Having such a supportive group of readers has made this whole project take on a completely new life. This isn’t just my project anymore – I really feel that it’s ours.

I have been touched to receive notes from a few of you looking to connect about health topics ranging from the importance of fitness to a holistic lifestyle (so true – link to Susan’s site here) – to the importance of maintaining a healthy diet and lifestyle for those living with terminal illnesses such as cancer (link to Jillian’s blog here).

All of you have such amazing stories to tell and I am happy to do what I can to bring awareness to wellness initiatives everywhere.

But for now, let’s eat, and take off our shoes.

We all have things we do to escape and break what can seem like difficult patterns or routines we are stuck in – or simply just to get away. I’d love to hear what you do to step away.

  • Are you a garden lover?
  • Where do you take your shoes off and really relax?

For now, let’s eat well, and enjoy!

Service to others is the rent you pay for your room here on earth.

~ Muhammad Ali

Next up I’ve got a super delicious chickpea salad in the wings – you’ll want to catch this one it is that delicious! Wishing you all a super fabulous week!

Yours in Less,

68 Comments

Filed under Cheap, Cooking, Family, Food, Happiness, Inspiration, Lifestyle, Rejuvenation, Salads, Travel, Vegan, Vegetables, Vegetarian

Simple Living Recipe: Roasted Cauliflower & Kale Pesto

More simply delicious. More simply easy.

How many things there are which I do not want.

~ Socrates

I definitely suspect know that I have a thing for vegetables. Most kids would travel to the big city (Toronto) to visit relatives and enjoy the spoiling that inevitably unfolds when in the company of doting extended family. Not this girl.

I can only imagine the shock and bewilderment when I arrived at my aunt’s house in Toronto (at the ripe old age of 12) – and upon being asked which of my favorite foods I would like to stock the house with, I promptly jotted down a list of my favorite vegetables. For steaming. It’s true.

Things really haven’t changed much.

Time is what we want the most, but what we use the worst.

~ William Penn

Always start with the freshest greens you can find.

If you’ve been reading IPOM for a while, then you might already be familiar with my favorite pesto of all time – the IPOM Killer Kale Pesto posted here .

It is insanely good either fully vegan or with added cheese, and it makes a wonderful addition to almost anything (including the delicious spelt pasta pictured here).

Case in point this recipe for roasted cauliflower.

Roasting cauliflower produces a taste and texture experience that is (IMO) out of this world, or rather ‘totally out of bounds’ as a few of my besties have been known to say (but not about cauliflower).

It is easy to cook, cauliflower is quite cheap, and guess what: it’s totally good for you too.

The years teach much the days never know.

~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

The Less:

Less fried or deep-fried foods means less troubling gas or potential indigestion. Less grain based or overly starchy side dishes mean more vegetables to compliment meals and make easy work of food combining. Less regular ways to prepare old ‘standbys’ means more variety to add to your tables, so even one or two ingredients tastes like a party on your tongue.

The More:

More ways to eat veggies more easy filling meals. More cruciferous greens and plant foods means more anti-cancer and disease fighting properties. More fiber, roughage, and water based foods means ‘using it and losing it’ is effortless. Because digestion needn’t ever be that taxing.

Roasted Cauliflower & Kale Pesto:

  • (1) large Cauliflower
  • (3-4) tbsp good olive oil (or a few good glugs – I learned that term here and love it)
  • a few pinches of salt
  • (1 – 2) tsp fried cumin seeds (optional)
  • (1) recipe Killer Kale Pesto

Start by heating your oven to an aggressive 400 degrees. This is by far the best roasting temperature and can be used to roast all veggies from sweet potatoes, to tomatoes to zucchini & eggplant.

While the oven heats, trim and wash your cauliflower. Remove any of the leaves that are still on and discard or compost. On a cutting board, turn the whole head of the cauliflower upside down and slice into ‘steaks’ just under an inch thick, starting from the base of the head. Cut them as thinly as you can while still having them hold together is the key here.

You should end up with several ‘steaks’ and a few other smaller pieces that will not hold together with the rest. It’s all good, and the strays will be just as delicious as the larger ones. Sometimes even more so.

Generously oil with the olive oil a flat baking tray and set the cauliflower pieces down on the oiled side. Once they are all on and oiled on one side, turn them over to ensure each side gets coated (just a little).

Sprinkle the pieces lightly with a little salt if desired and put up to roast. Cook for 20 minutes and then flip to the other side and cook for another 20 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow to cool on the tray before serving.

Before serving, feel free to sprinkle with fried cumin seeds and serve however you wish. This version with Kale Pesto was so amazing that I just had to share it with you all!

This kept also incredibly well and the leftovers made for a wonderful midday meal while I was out and about.

Serve warm or at room temperature alongside a green salad, a protein dish, or (my choice) on its own.

It is quite filling and the nuts & oil in the pesto provide more than adequate sustenance and calories to make a light & satisfying meal for most (just not my overly manly husband – bless his heart).

So whether you are old pals with cauliflower or just getting to know it, this is a most enjoyable (and completely delicious) way to serve it to even the most newbie vegetable eater.

Leftover kale pesto can find it’s way into the rest of your meals long after you devour this cauliflower. Or you can just make it again too!

And it’s so easy, there really is no good reason not to.*

*Unless there is.

Realize deeply that the present moment is all you will ever have.

~ Eckhart Tolle

Who is rich?Β  He who rejoices in his portion.

~The Talmud

I hope whatever you do that you will do so with joy (as much as we can muster which at times is hard), and with gratitude and also with pleasure.

We don’t have long in this life but we do have right now.

I’ll be taking the weekend to visit some family with my youngest daughter before we run out of time this summer. Now that summer is finally here, it’s time to enjoy it while it lasts, and with that I am off yet again to visit the islands this time.

  • Have you always loved veggies?
  • What is your favorite way to eat cauliflower?
  • Did anyone enjoy the coconut quinoa this week?

Wishing you all a most fabulous weekend (thank you all for reading!) with whomever you choose to spend it with. Be it friends, family, or just yourself. Enjoy!

Yours in Less,

67 Comments

Filed under Cooking, Family, Food, Gluten Free, Photography, Recipes, Rich & Simple, Savory, Vegan, Vegetables, Vegetarian

Recipe: White Kidney Bean Dip with Herbs & Artichokes

It is always so good to be home!

One’s destination is never a place, but a new way of seeing things.

~ Henry Miller

Hello bloggers!

I am rather excited to report that I made it through another few days of (fun) work travel and am home safe and sound!

It has been a busy little spring here (for me and my little trips) and I am quite content to put my feet up for the next little while and rest until the ‘big trip’ comes around in August.

I wish I could report that the weather was swell here at home, but the truth is it is just so-so (it’s sunny out as I write though!).

So while I pine for (just a little) sun, I’ll share with you this yummy dip that we’ve been enjoying, most recently on our Mother’s Day picnic (yes…a sunny warm meal outdoors!) *sigh*…

Time you enjoy wasting is not wasted time.

~ Marthe Troly-Curtin

As you all may know, I enjoy finding many a use for green veggies like kale, and this dip offers another chance to use up this powerfully nutritious green.

Along with fresh herbs, the easy to use and ever tasty artichokes, and (always) good quality olive oil, lemon, garlic, and (just a little) of your love – this 100% vegan dip is an elegantly pleasant surprise!

So if you’ve got a bag of dried white kidneys, or a can or two hanging around the pantry, this is a fabulous way to enjoy their creamy texture and taste that serves as a base for many a lively addition.

Happiness is not something ready made. It comes from your own actions.

Β  ~ Dalai Lama XIV

The Less:

Less dairy-based dips means more plant-based clean eating. Less store bought or prepared foods means more fresh easy ingredients. Fewer ruts in your repertoire means things will always stay fresh, and what’s better than freshness in life?

The More:

More high fiber bean dishes means more tasty ways to fill up faster. More fresh greens to incorporate means more reasons to always stock them. More fresh dips on hand means less tempting for calories elsewhere, so you can enjoy more of the good stuff, more often.

White Kidney Bean Dip with Herbs & Artichokes:

  • (3) cups cooked white kidney beans (navy beans will do in a pinch)
  • (1/2) cup cashews, soaked in water for 4 hours (you can also use them straight up)
  • (1) can artichokes (398 ml, about 5 each)
  • (1) cup chopped green curly kale
  • (1/2) cup fresh lemon juice
  • (1/2) cup good quality olive oil
  • (2-3) cloves of fresh garlic, peeled & roughly chopped
  • (3) heaping teaspoons capers
  • (1) tbsp fresh rosemary leaves removes from the stem & chopped (about 2-3 stems)
  • (2) tbsp fresh thyme leaves, removed from the stem
  • (1) tsp salt (more to taste)

Combine all ingredients on a blender or food processor, and pulse blend until creamy and well combined. You can’t over blend this one so let is really go!

Once ready, transfer to a container or serving bowl and chill. This tangy dip will keep for a while in the fridge, at least a week, and goes well with all breads, crackers, and fresh crisp vegetables (it’s super delicious with crisp romaine leaves).

This recipe makes a generous portion, so if you aren’t feeding a large group, or don’t want to eat it all week, consider halving the recipe.

If you do make the whole thing – plan to eat this for a few days! The nice thing is there are so many ways…..and it is pretty yummy πŸ™‚

If you have trouble peeling garlic, here is a good little tip (I am sure many of you do this already):

Start with good garlic. But organic if you can and local garlic is even better. Separate the cloves you need from the bulb.

Using a sharp knife, place the side of the knife on top of the garlic clove you are about to peel. Using all of your weight, push down on the knife and the garlic and crush the clove with the side of the heavy knife blade.

The peel will slip right off! Voila!

Of course I served this a few times in the last while for guests, and on this gloriously sunny picnic.

It’s also superb on warm toast with tomato.

The best way to cheer yourself is to try to cheer someone else up.

~ Mark Twain

However you choose to enjoy it, I suspect this will be a hit!

Even the hubby liked it and kept going back for more. I didn’t tell him it was full of kale or capers..because there really was no need πŸ™‚

Where there is love there is life.

~ Mahatma Gandhi

I hope you enjoy this one as much as we did!

  • What is your favorite summer dip?
  • Do you ever use white kidney beans?

Next up, I’ll share with you all (as promised!) the progress we’ve made on our plans for NSF…we are working on a menu for a special event coming up and getting ready to roll out our new look!

Carla and Chris started something special with their 40 day fast, and I am grateful for their efforts and contribution – I hope you will be as pleased to meet them as I am to know them.

Have a fabulous week my friends – I am wondering if anyone got inspired to purge their closet from the last post? I loved all of your comments…and am so glad to hear I am not the only one out there who is benefiting from letting go!

We would love to hear from you, and hope you are all having a swell week, wherever you are, and no matter the weather πŸ™‚

Yours in Less,

81 Comments

Filed under Cashews, Cooking, Food, Gluten Free, Nut Recipes, Photography, Recipes, Rich & Simple, Savory, Snacks, Vegan, Vegetables, Vegetarian

Recipe: Healing Green Tonic & Tummy Smiles

Green juice that will make your tummy smile!

Feeling gratitude and not expressing it is like wrapping a present and not giving it.

~ William Arthur Ward

Good day dear IPOM readers and friends! Need a little something to pick you up mid-week like I do?

How about a quick little shout-out to a most virtuous glass of nourishing and delicious fresh green juice?

I’ve mentioned before that it is tough for me to throw away the pulp that is left over after extracting fresh juice.

And it’s true, it is hard (for me).

Eating foods is definitely the preferred way for me to ensure there is plenty of nutrition being served up at our table, and all that fiber and goodness that comes from consuming roughage and delicious foods in their whole state is ideal (IMO).

Except when it’s time for a change up.

When we are no longer able to change a situation, we are challenged to change ourselves.

~ Victor Frankl

There are times when the body might be sensitive to things. There are times when we might be stressed. There are times when we just crave a glass of pure vital energy.

For these times, and often on short fast days, this drink is my go-to elixir.

Super-energizing, super-alkalizing, super-tasty, and super-charged, this drink brings together everything an ailing tummy or mind might need. Eating can be stressful on the body sometimes (especially foods that are not good for you), and that’s okay. Just knowing a good safe way to rest the body and mind is a good place to start.

Of course, you need a juicer for this (which I know we don’t all have) – thankfully juicers are easily found these days in all price ranges, so if you are inclined, with a bit of research you can pick one up without breaking the bank account. It is an investment that will pay dividends, regardless of whether you juice once a day, once a week, or once a month.

Live out of your imagination, not your history.

-Stephen Covey

Here is the lowdown on my favorite take on Natalia Rose’s Green Lemonade from her book ‘Raw Food Detox’. It’s simply divine, and actually tastes delicious!

The Less:

Less solids in your tummy means a little rest when its needed. Less pressure on the tummy means more time to just be. Less cooked and stored juices means more vital enzymes and goodness, and hopefully less time feeling less than the best.

The More:

More fresh lemon juice means more alkalizing health benefits. More fresh greens means more chlorophyll and minerals. More fresh simple fruit juice means easily digested sugars, without all the nasty highs and lows, because something this happy can’t bring you down.

Healing Green Tonic:

~ Adapted from Natalia Rose, Raw Food Detox

  • 4 apples, skin on, cut into pieces
  • 10 leaves kale
  • 1 head celery
  • 2 lemons, with skin on, cut into pieces
  • knob of fresh peeled ginger (optional)

Simply wash all ingredients – try to use organic vegetables and fruits for this if you can. Chop apples, lemons, and ginger. Be careful when juicing to put the greens and lemon pieces in with a stalk of celery or a piece of apple to prevent clogging (depending on your juicer’s strength).

Strain through a very fine sieve (or not if you don’t mind a little pulp at the bottom), and enjoy right away for maximum life force and vital energy. Letting juice sit will oxidize the released nutrition, but if you like you can put some away in a sealed container (keep cold!) for enjoyment later.

I drink this when I need a nice boost. It keeps me going for hours and leaves a wonderful aftertaste and and even more glorious happy tummy smile.

It sounds extra-super-corny, but trust me it’s true!

I don’t juice too often as I get annoyed cleaning the juicer as well as I feel sad if I produce too much pulp – though it does certainly make a lovely addition to gardener’s compost πŸ™‚

I’ve got nothing to do today but smile.

Β  ~ Simon and Garfunkel

The bamboo that bends is stronger than the oak that resists

~ Japanese Proverb

My weekend reading!

The power we have to create good, and to impact positive change both within ourselves and within a greater collective community is never lost on me.

There is always, always, always something to be thankful for.

~ Author Unknown

So keep up your own unique brands of awesomeness, dear IPOM readers and friends, for it is your energy and enthusiasm that keeps us all going, and I can only speak for myself and I know this to be true for this blogger!

I also have to let you guys know there are so many exciting things happening here this week with regards to Not So Fast. Honestly, I can’t wait to share….all in good time!

  • Are you a fan of juicing?
  • What is your favorite fresh juice of all time?
  • What are you MOST excited for right now (share anything!)?

I just adore hearing from you all, we’d all love to know!

I am off to enjoy the glorious Vancouver sunshine…and it sounds as though it is here to stay for a while!

Yours in Less,

71 Comments

Filed under Cooking, Food, Gluten Free, Photography, Raw, Recipes, Rejuvenation, Rich & Simple, Snacks, Vegan, Vegetables, Vegetarian

Recipe: Kale Veggie Slaw with Sesame Miso Dressing

Raw veggies make me feel so good!

A day without laughter is a day wasted.

~ Charles Chaplin

Have you laughed today?!

I mean, really laughed? The side-splitting, joyful, exhaustion and tear inducing laughter that used to get us sent to the hallways in high school?

I love laughing. Laughter makes me happy. We try to laugh a lot. But sometimes I need to lighten up.

I’ve just returned from a (super) busy time of travel for work. Being on the road and working takes a tremendous amount of energy – and I am so grateful to have the weekend to catch up and return to my regular routine.

And to laugh!

The human race has only one really effective weapon and that is laughter.

~ Mark Twain

I don’t know about you, but I am a lot more prone to laughter when I am feeling spiffy.

Spiffy to me means my tummy is happy, my heart is happy, and my family and friends around me are happy.

To achieve all of these, I must take care of the 1st: making my tummy happy.

Because if my tummy is happy, my heart is happy knowing I am taking care of myself. When my heart is happy, it shines, and when it shines, it casts its light on anyone else around me.

And they are happy too.

You, yourself, as much as anybody in the entire universe, deserve your love and affection.

~ Buddha

Seem too simple? I’d love to hear what brings happiness and laughter your way, because (IMO) there is no such thing as too much laughter (except when it is in the middle of science class).

This salad is a flavorful explosion that will bring a smile to your face. Featuring beautiful raw kale, broccoli stalks, carrots, and the ever humble rutabega, I’ll be bringing this to many a summer patio this year!

Let’s dig in!

The Less:

Less lettuce means less more creative ways to use up vegetables. Less cooking means more raw nutrition. Less store-bought dressings and pre-grated veggies means less cost, preservatives, and packaging. Less conventional foods means more adventurous meals, and maybe a few laughs along the way too!

The More:

More cheap vegetables means filling up for pennies. More vibrant raw veggies means more vibrant raw smiles. More kale and broccoli means more super-powered greens, and more savvy delicious potluck salads means you’ll always get an invite!

Kale Veggie Slaw with Sesame Miso Dressing

  • (1) cups grated carrots (about 2 medium)
  • (1) cup grated broccoli stalks (about 3)
  • (1) cup grated rutabega or turnip (1/2 large)
  • (3) cups green emerald kale, chopped fine
  • (1/2) large red bell pepper
  • (1/2 – 1) cup roasted cashews (whole or pieces)

Dressing:

  • (3/4) cup canola oil
  • (2) tbsp dark sesame oil
  • (1/4) cup apple cider vinegar
  • (1/4) cup white miso
  • 3 tbsp fresh chopped ginger
  • (1/2) cup water

Start by combining all dressing ingredients except for the water. With the water ready, blend on high and add the water to the blender in a slow steady stream, until the dressing is light and frothy.

Transfer to a clean jar. This recipe makes more than required for this salad and is amazing on rice or quinoa, or any fresh green salad!

It’s hands down a wonderful vegan dressing that is smooth, flavorful, and incredibly delicious!

If you have a food processor with a grating attachment, or a salad master grater, you can grate the vegetables this way. Otherwise a hand grater (on a medium grate, don’t do it on a super fine cheese grater) will do. Grate each vegetable into a mixing bowl one at a time. You can opt to peel the carrots or not, but I always do for salads like this as they tend to keep better this way.

Grate the carrots, rutabega, and broccoli stalk all to the same size and mix well.

I’d rather be able to face myself in the bathroom mirror than be rich and famous.

~ Ani DiFranco

To chop the kale, use a good chopping knife. Chop the washed kale leaves as you would fresh herbs, into half-inch pieces or so, and add to the bowl. Chop the red pepper to a medium dice and add to the mix. Feeling good yet?

Toast the cashews in 350 degree oven until brown (about 10 minutes) or in a dry skillet on the stove-top. If using pieces, add straight to the bowl, or coarsely chop whole ones before adding.

To dress, start by adding 2/3 cup of the dressing to the bowl and mixing all well. If you like, add more dressing to taste. Garnish with toasted sesame seeds or more roasted cashews and serve!

This salad keeps well for at least a day in the fridge. In fact, my daughter said it was even better the next day, so no one needs worry about leftovers here!

When the kids will eat kale, that’s always a good sign, and while one of them still won’t touch it, I am pretty happy to have the hubby and teenager enjoying it now πŸ™‚

Always laugh when you can, it is cheap medicine.

~ George Gordon Byron

Most of the shadows of this life are caused by standing in one’s own sunshine.

~Ralph Waldo Emerson

By being yourself, you put something wonderful in the world that was not there before.

~Edwin Elliot

So amazing with a few slices of ripe avocado.

Bliss in a bowl!

Laughter is the shortest distance between two people.

~ Victor Borge

This might be funny to you. Or not.

I hope wherever you are on this fine evening, you are in the company of loved ones (perhaps even enjoying a hearty laugh).

I am so looking forward to catching up on life this weekend (this includes catching up with all my blogging buddies!).

After whipping up a batch of spicy spinach hummus and putting up some rice to cook, I am headed outside….I can hear the sounds of children’s laughter out there, and I think I might be missing out!

  • What’s your most extreme laughing memory?
  • Ever found yourself literally on the floor or (worse) kicked out of class?

I’ve always cherished the gems I carry with me and I’d love to hear yours! I hope you’ve all had a wonderful week! It’s so nice to be back πŸ™‚

Yours in Less,

114 Comments

Filed under Cooking, Dressings, Food, Gluten Free, Photography, Raw, Recipes, Rich & Simple, Salads, Savory, Vegan, Vegetables, Vegetarian

Dessert Recipe: Spring Rhubarb Almond Squares

Time for a special spring treat!

Imagination is the highest form of research.

― Albert Einstein

You know it’s a good life when you’ve got great neighbors. Let’s hear it for great friends and neighbors, shall we?

When it comes to our hood, we’ve lucked out to the max, as was evidenced by the large bushel of blushingly gorgeous rhubarb that was harvested across the lane and delivered to my back deck this past week (thanks Brian!).

I'll call this the Diva salad today πŸ™‚ It's so yummy!

But before we dive into this gorgeous recipe, I’ve got to say a very special thank you to another kind of friend.

The blogging kind!

Sarah at the Healthy Diva has a guest post up over at her Sydney, Australia based blog featuring IPOM and a simply yummy salad dressing recipe .

Feel free to pay her a visit to see what was up with this salad I enjoyed this past week. It’s a goodie!

Thanks so much to Sarah for the wonderfully kind invite – and welcome to any Diva readers who may be visiting IPOM for the 1st time!

β€œBe humble for you are made of earth. Be noble for you are made of stars”

― Serbian proverb

This rhubarb gifting came to me just as I had picked up a magazine dedicated to spring recipes – it’s easy to stumble upon delightful ways to use asparagus, rhubarb, nettles, and the many other wonderful spring foods that come at this time of year here in Canada.

I made a few alterations, based on what I had on hand, and went straight to work – reserving the remaining rhubarb to stew and use later (I grew up eating it with plain yoghurt for dessert).

The result was a beautiful, date square like dessert, with a bright gooey filling and gorgeous light texture.

All over town now, there are shoots of rhubarb plants exploding in backyard gardens everywhere.

I’ve never made space to plant it in my small backyard garden, and I figure as long as Brian’s across the lane I won’t need to πŸ™‚

I used real butter in this version as the recipe called for, but I would be delighted to see it veganized with coconut butter too.

There is no other dairy in the recipe at all, so making this adjustment would be easy!

The Less:

Less far away fruit desserts means easy ways to eat local. Less tough to find ingredients means using what’s on hand, so you can get to work as soon as harvest is done. Less heavily sweet and cakey desserts means savoring without filling up, so you can still feel the pleasure long after you are done.

The More:

More rhubarb means more fresh, lively flavor. More local food means less carbon, and less cost to the planet and your pocketbook. More neighborly ways means stronger community, and more yummy desserts means inviting them over is easy.

Spring Rhubarb Almond Bars:

Adapted from Canadian Living Magazine

  • 6 cups chopped fresh rhubarb (about 6 thick stalks)
  • (3/4) cup brown sugar
  • (1) tsp grated orange zest
  • (1/3) cup fresh orange juice
  • (1) tbsp all purpose flour
  • (1.5) cups quick oats (not instant)
  • (2/3) cup all purpose flour
  • (1) cup brown sugar
  • (3/4) tsp cinnamon
  • pinch salt
  • (2/3) cold butter, cubed
  • (4) tbsp sliced or slivered almonds, chopped

Heat oven to 350 degrees and get a 9 inch square cake pan ready (no need to oil it).

In a large saucepan, combine the first 5 ingredients – rhubarb, sugar, orange zest, orange juice, and flour – and bring to a boil with the lid on. Reduce heat to medium, and cook, partially covered until the mixture is reduced to 1 3/4 cups or so – about 25-30 minutes. Make sure to stir regularly to keep the mixture from burning at the bottom.

Once cooked and reduced, turn the heat off and allow to cool for a few minutes, about 10 – 15 minutes or so.

While the rhubarb cooks, combine the oats, flour, brown sugar, cinnamon and salt in a mixing bowl and stir to combine. With fingers or a pastry cutter, blend in the butter (I always use my hands for this – nature’s tools – but that’s just me!).

Press 2/3 of the mixture into the cake pan. Bake at 350 degrees until golden brown, about 2 minutes. remove from oven and let cool 10 minutes before adding the rhubarb mixture.

Add the cooled rhubarb mixture to the pan and spread until it is even.

Next, add the chopped almonds to the remaining crumble mixture, and gently press together into small clumps. Sprinkle the mixture over the filling and distribute evenly.

Bake at 350 until the crumble is golden, about 40 minutes. Let cool completely in the pan before cutting into squares.

β€œThe truth is, everyone is going to hurt you. You just got to find the ones worth suffering for.”

~ Bob Marley

Cut the cold butter into the bowl with a knife. Get ready to mix it all together.

A person’s a person, no matter how small.

~ Dr. Seuss, Horton Hears a Who

Crumble it all up until the mixture is well-integrated – making sure there are no large chunks of butter or sugar left straggling around in there.

I get in there like a kid in the dirt. I don’t like to wear gloves to garden either, do you?

Press the 2/3 of the mixture into the pan as tightly as you can. This will be the base for this wonderful yummy filling!

I would rather walk with a friend in the dark, than alone in the light.

― Helen Keller

Let this mixture cool before adding it to the base – about 15 minutes or so.

Try not to eat too much of it as it does this (but do be sure to eat a little).

You never fail until you stop trying.

~ Albert Einstein

Any almonds will do for this, sliced, slivered, even chopped whole almonds if that is what’s on hand.

Freedom is not worth having if it does not include the freedom to make mistakes.

~ Mahatma Gandhi

The result, a beautiful pan of (neighborly) spring goodness. Worthy of stopping to enjoy with friends, neighbors and family.

Serve these with or without vanilla ice cream, and give some to your neighbors (or not).

These guys will keep in a container or tin at room temperature – I am sure they would make a rather smashing breakfast served alongside some cashew cream or thick greek yoghurt.

How’s that for versatility?

You will do foolish things, but do them with enthusiasm.

~ Colette

I can’t wait for the next harvest from across the lane! Truthfully, Brian has got a pretty sweet garden and so I just might head over there with these bars awfully soon.

They just might be good enough to keep him delivering more of his earthly goodies πŸ™‚

Life is what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans.

~ John Lennon

I hope each and every one of you had a fabulous weekend – next up, I’ll share with you a kick ass salad recipe inspired this week by a gift from another great friend of mine!

It features a favorite of mine that I haven’t posted about for a while…yep….it’s kale!

So stay tuned it’s that good.

  • Are you gearing up to use rhubarb this spring or better yet, do you grow it?
  • What is your favorite rhubarb or spring dessert recipe?

I hope you enjoy these as much as we did – and thanks again for reading and for your comments! I had a lot of fun with the last post and got more than a few awesome ideas for not only making but seasoning popcorn. Thank you!

Wishing you all a truly fabulous week – PS – I am traveling again (this time to the TDOT aka Toronto) so I might be spotty with my comments – I’ll be back the end of the week though!

Yours in Less (from out east),

52 Comments

Filed under Cheap, Cooking, Desserts, Food, Photography, Recipes, Rich & Simple, Vegan, Vegetarian

Recipe: Lively Cilantro Jalapeno Sauce

An easy take on a few fresh favorites (for all)!

A really great talent finds its happiness in execution.

~ Goethe

Good day folks! Here it is, as promised, the brightest, greenest, freshest sauce to hit our fridge (that won’t go brown) in a long long while!

I should start by stating that I could eat foods inspired by Mexican flavors everyday without any issue (really, at all).

I mean, really, this food is made with quite possibly the simplest, freshest, and most flavorful ingredients out there – not to mention being outright cheap and easy to obtain and prepare.

I’ve yet to meet a person who disagrees with me on this either – and I think I’d be challenged to based on the general love I see for all things taco related online and elsewhere (delicious food truck anyone?).

Let’s just say: LOVE.

Yes, there it is – for veggies and meat eaters alike to vegans and gluten free folk. There is something for everyone here….most all an abundance of fresh flavor that you don’t have to break the bank to enjoy!

Let’s go through the list when it comes to the amazing flavors that have permeated our house these days:

Limes: easy to find and cheap. Cilantro: easy to find (and grow) and cheap. Green onions: same.

The rest? A little goes a long way here: a few nuts (which could easily become dairy too if preferred), a little oil, water and salt (and don’t forget to add a little kale of course!) – and you are set!

A gorgeous any-day meal inspiration to top just about anything.

This sauce is part of a trio of sauces I have been playing with – so far this version has gotten the most play simply for the ease of ingredients, and the fresh color and flavor.

I’ll be posting the other sauces too, but let’s get started with the basics!

The Less:

Less store bought cooked and pasteurized sauces means more freshness to enhance your favorite foods. Less salt, sugar, and other additives means less stress and more rest for your hard working cells. Less wondering what to put on your food makes less work of enjoying whatever (just happens) to be on hand.

The More:

More fresh greens in your everyday repertoire means more of the good stuff without trying. More lively citrus juice means more zip and flavor without sacrifice. More homemade raw goodness makes more (of any) foods come alive. More lively food means more lively meals, which can lead to more liveliness at the dinner table and who knows just where else?

Lively Cilantro Jalapeno Sauce:

  • (3/4) cup raw whole cashews or pieces
  • (1) whole bunch cilantro, stems removed (yup – the entire bunch!)
  • (1) fresh jalapeno pepper
  • (1/2) bunch green onion (tops only – about 1/3-1/2 cup, no need to chop!)
  • (1-2) leaves green curly kale
  • (4) tbsp freshly squeezed lime juice (about 2 limes)
  • (1) cup water
  • (2) tbsp canola or vegetable oil
  • (1) tsp good sea salt

Combine all ingredients in a blender and blend on high. Keep things moving with a spatula if you like, and let it go until it is well blended and super duper bright green!

Use the whole jalapeno if you don’t mind a little kick, otherwise feel free to remove the seeds first if you prefer a milder flavor.

There you have it – pour into a jar and keep sealed in the fridge. This will last at least a week in the fridge – see how long it lasts you!

This sauce works brilliantly (as you can imagine) smothered on a freshly warmed corn tortilla and topped with any range of beans, chopped veggies, with or without meat or cheese. It also works to top any kind of veggie burger and is delicious on the Quinoa Protein Bites posted here!

β€œWhat lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to what lies within us”

– Ralph Waldo Emerson

Here it is with a few Ancho Chiles blended in..

The beauty and simplicity within each of the ingredients in this recipe remind me that good food is always just a step away and needn’t be complicated to be prepared well, or enjoyed.

On a personal note, I am so enjoying the comments and feedback from all of you this week – particularly the notes on your favorite childhood snacks – it’s so fun to be taken back for just a moment to what we ate in the good old days!

Thanks to all of you for taking part – I hope you are enjoying the week!

  • Are you a giant fan of Mexican inspired foods?
  • What are your favorite cheap and easy meals?

Feel free to share your lively thoughts below – and enjoy this one!

Yours in Less,

33 Comments

Filed under Cashews, Cheap, Cooking, Feeding, Food, Raw, Recipes, Rich & Simple, Uncategorized, Vegan, Vegetables, Vegetarian

Recipe: Everyday Green Smoothie

Okay, who is totally loving the extra daylight?

To keep the body in good health is a duty… otherwise we shall not be able to keep our mind strong and clear.

~ Buddha

And now for something completely different…and maybe (just a little) more healthy. After all, it is spring, and spring calls for:
  • lighter food
  • lighter clothing
  • lighter thinking
  • lighter evenings (yay)!
It’s time to talk smoothies (just a little).
Can we just stop here for a moment in revel in the health benefits and yummy flavors of endless possible combinations of blended fruits?

Okay. Good.

Now, lately (and I know I am not alone here), I have been enjoying many versions of the green smoothie. I like to add avocado to make it creamy and satisfying (again, sooo not alone here). The other fruit I add is totally dependent on what’s around. In keeping with the theme of ‘less is more’ – I try whenever I can to incorporate cheaper, more local fruits into my blended delights – like the frozen cranberries pictured here (a giant BC crop that is largely exported), or cast-off apples, frozen BC berries, etc. But the beauty really is – anything goes!

The Less:

Less heavy meals means easy work for your body and mind, not to mention a light energetic feeling to boot. Easy to digest fruit sugars give the body a nice buzz that doesn’t crash and leave you down in the dumps. Less pasteurized fruit juices and over the counter smoothies means more fresh enzymes and less additives, sugar, or other things you don’t want or need.

The More:

More fresh fruits means more vital energy pulsing through your veins. More blended live enzymes means the body gets a hand digesting (imagine digestion that wasn’t taxing!) More greens, fiber, and good fat from this combo will result in all round feel good vibes. Everyday.

Everyday Green Smoothie:

  • (1) avocado (feel free to use a half or a whole)
  • (1) cup chopped fresh or frozen fruit (berries, summer fruit, apple, mango)
  • (1) banana (you can sub this out too)
  • (1) cup liquid – apple juice, water, almond milk*
  • (1-2) leaves kale or a handful of fresh spinach leaves
  • (1-2) dates (optional)

Add your ingredients to the blender, blend on high for a minute or two, and enjoy!

* Start with one cup of liquid and add more if needed.

One the topic of liquid, I am a little old-school and have a thing about mixing fruit with other foods – years ago (like almost 20 years or so) I read a number of books on proper food combining and have never really dropped the idea that fruits should be eaten alone or not at all.

With that said, almond milk in smoothies is utterly delicious. My own personal experience tells me almond milk can combine with longer digesting fruits like banana, but it is up to the individual to find what works for them on this one.

For more current info on this topic by someone I really admire, check out the beautiful New York based raw food cleanse guru Natalia Rose here.

This is one of my go to post-fast meals, especially for the morning after a fast day. Or, if I feel that I can’t go without food entirely on a fast day (it happens), it’s common for me to whip up a fairly generous portion of this to take with me to consume when I need it (but never before).

Because fasting isn’t always about not eating, and consuming smoothie for a portion of a day would be a great way to ‘go without’ for many who typically eat heavier, more taxing foods as habit or preference.

The way you think, the way you behave, the way you eat, can influence your life by 30 to 50 years.

~ Deepak Chopra

  • What is your fave smoothie fruit?
  • Are you enjoying the extra daylight too?

I love receiving your feedback and know many of you will have a lot to add here – I’d love to know your favorites!

On another note, my feet really look great – though who are we kidding, I think I only go for the massage!

I looked for some of the suggested shades (thank you!), was unsuccessful, and ended up choosing something called “Clubbing all Night” by OPI. Don’t quote me exactly on the name, but it’s a delightfully sparkly orange that is making me very happy – not to mention making me imagine myself as (just a little) bad ass with that name…

Next up: a little something with quinoa!

I hope you are all having an amazingly wonderful week – and here’s to lighter living in honor of the arrival of spring!

Yours in Less,


31 Comments

Filed under Cheap, Cooking, Fasting, Gluten Free, Happiness, Raw, Recipes, Rejuvenation, Vegan