Friday, December 30, 2011

How to Make Wheat Grass Juice

I'm behind on posting for this month so I thought I would catch everyone up with a few posts before the new year.  One of the fun activities we did this month was grow our own wheat grass!  It's really so easy.  You can buy Winter Wheat Berries at your local health food store in the bulk bin area.  Bring them home and soak them in water for a couple of days.  Rinse and rehydrate them in between days and store them in the refrigerator if the temperature in your house is above 72 degrees.  Basically you are trying to sprout them before planting.  So as soon as you see a little tiny sprout forming, that's when you want to put them in a tray of dirt. 

You can just lay them on top of the dirt and they will start to grow.  Give them 10-11 days and they are ready to harvest. 

Now, realize that you are not going to get a lot of juice out of that tray of grass.  It's something like 1/2 cup of juice and you probably don't want to drink it straight up on a completely empty stomach.  It's quite bitter and potent.  Most people complain that they get a headache or feel nauseated doing wg shots. We always mix it with three to four cups of purified water, juiced lemons, ice and agave nectar and have it one hour after a meal.

We have an Omega 8005 Fruit and Vegetable Juicer.  I bought it refurbished on eBay back in 2005.  I encourage everyone to check eBay for juicers and blenders before buying new.  If you don't have a juicer, you can use a high powered blender.  Just don't add all the grass in at once.  Do half with two cups of water, juice of half of a lemon and 2 cups of ice and then empty the blender and do the next batch.  Add agave to taste.

I like to use the juicer because my kids and operate it without my help :)  I of course supervise, but they like to do all the work themselves. Now if I can just get them to clean up the mess afterwards!

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Mango BBQ Beans with Mashed Yucca with Cilantro and Lime

Now that the winter months are approaching and the weather is cooling down here in Florida I've been enjoying lots of soups, chili recipes and...Mango BBQ Beans!  Yes, it's another delicious and simple recipe from Appetite for Reduction and if you have never tried Yucca, this is your chance.  Be brave, it's not much different from potatoes other than it has roots through the center that you will want to remove after you cook them :)

Mango BBQ Beans

1 tsp olive oil (I used vegan broth)
1 onion, chopped finely
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 mango, seeded and chopped small
1 cup vegetable broth
1/2 tspred pepper flakes, or 1/4 tsp if you want less spicy
1/4 tsp allspice
1 tsp ground coriander
1/2 tsp salt
1 (25 oz) can kidney beans
1 tsp liquid smoke
2 to 3 tsp agave nectar

Preheat a 4-quart pot over medium heat. Saute the onion and garlic in the oil (or broth) with a pinch of salt for about 5 minutes, until translucent.
   Add the mango, tomato sauce, broth, red pepper flakes, coriander, salt and kidney beans. Turn up the heat and bring to a rolling boil. Lower the heat to a simmer and cover the pot, leaving a little room for steam to excape and let cook for about 45 minutes, stirring often. The sauce should thincken and the mangoes should cook down a great deal.
   Turn off the heat, mix the agave and liquid smoke, and let the beans sit for about 5 minutes. Taste for sweetness and add more agave if needed. Adjust the salt and seasonings and serve.

Mashed Yucca with Cilantro & Lime

2 pounds yucca peeled and chopped into 2-inch chunks
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
1 tsp olive oil
1/2 tsp salt, plus extra for salting the yucca water

Place the yucca in a pot and cover with water until submerged. Add a big pinch of salt, cover the pot, and bring to a boil. Lower the heat to a simmer. Let simmer for about 20 minutes, until very, very tender. Turn off the heat.
  Reserve about a cup of the hot water by carefully dipping a heatproof mug into the pot. Don't burn yourself, please. Drain the yucca, then return it to the pot. Add the lime juice, cilantro, oil and salt. Mash well with a potato masher. Stream in the reserved hot water little by little, mashing as you go along. You may need up to 1/2 cup. Mash the yucca until nice and creamy and serve immediately.