Sunday, August 5, 2012

My Potluck Recipe's

I wanted to share the recipes of the food I brought to the Potluck. After reading my Blog I imagine you get to the end and wonder, hmmm, what should I make? Try these.... My fav is the Taco's stuffed in a pepper with the Sour Cream on top. You will be amazed at what you can create with Raw fresh ingredients.....

Mango Avocado Salad

Via & raw chef, Vanessa Sherwood


  • 2 Ripe Mangoes, peeled, pitted and chopped
  • 1 Large Avocado, peeled, pitted and chopped
  • 1 Tablespoon Lime Juiced
  • 2 Teaspoons Olive Oil
  • 1 Tablespoon Cilantro Leaves
  • 1 Tablespoon Black Sesame Seeds
Hand mix all of the ingredients together and serve.

Raw Burger recipe. You could substitute flax seeds for the sesame seeds if you want.
Veggie Burgers
1 large red onion

1 large bell pepper

3 carrots

1 small head cauliflower

1 lg. stalk broccoli

1 C almonds, soaked 12-24 hours

1 C sunflower seeds, soaked 5-6 hours

1/4 C sesame seeds, soaked 5-6 hours

5 cloves garlic

2 T Braggs or to taste
1 t cumin

2 T dried Cilantro or 1-2 C fresh
(can add mushrooms too if you like)
Blend all of the above ingredients and seasonings in a champion juicer with solid plate, or a food processor. This blended food is your patty mixture. Form and put 1/2" thick patties on a teflex sheet and place trays in dehydrator. Dehydrate at 105 degrees for 8-12 hours or until desired texture is obtained. Flip your burgers after 4 hours and remove teflex sheets, continue to dehydrate for 4-5 hours or until desired moisture is obtained.
Raw Cheese Sauce
2 cups cashews
3/4 cup water
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon sea salt (or slightly less)
1/3 cup nutritional yeast
Optional: 2 to 3 more tablespoons water if needed to facilitate blending
1. Throw all ingredients in a high-speed blender.
2. Blend. This recipe can be a bit of a pain when blending, so if you're having trouble getting the mixture to mix properly, turn your high-speed blender off and insert a spatula down one side to let a pocket of air down near the blades. Then remove the spatula, put the lid back on and continue blending--going from slow all the way up to fast again. You can also add a bit more water (mentioned above) but I try not to add any more water than three additional tablespoons because I like to keep the texture more on the thick side.
3. Serve. I usually use right away, as a dip, on top of broccoli, on top of a raw veggie burger patty.
4. Refrigerate leftovers. Leftover raw cheese sauce will keep for up to four days in a tightly sealed container in the refrigerator.

Raw Ketchup
1 1/2 cups of diced tomatoes
3 tablespoons dates (do not soak)
1/4 cup olive oil
1 teaspoon sea salt
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
1/2 cup sun dried tomatoes (dry - do not soak)
Raw ketchup recipe inspired by Ani's Raw Food Kitchen
1. Blend everything in the blender except the sun dried tomatatoes. Add the sun dried tomatoes in last and blend until you get a ketchupy consistency.
2. Ketchup is complete!
3. Serve on veggie burgers and don't forget your raw mayonnaise (yummy)!!Or serve this raw ketchup recipe on top of raw macaroni and cheese. :)
Once again, it's pretty easy and can be made instantly without any soaking or prepping. All you need is a blender.

Raw Taco Meat

1 cup walnuts
10 sundried tomatoes, soaked for at least one hour, preferably a few hours.
1-2 tablespoons olive oil
Chili powder (start with 1/4 tablespoon, then add more to taste)
Cayenne powder (start with 1/8 teaspoon or less!)  (This measurement has been revised and is better now!)
1/2-1 tsp sea salt
1 cup of cashews (soaked and rinsed)
1/2 cup of water
1/4 cup of lemon juice
3/4 teaspoon onion powder
1/2 teaspoon celtic sea salt
Directions to make this raw sour cream recipe:
1. If you are wise and patient, soak your cashews first and then rinse them before blending. If you are impatient and have a high-speed blender, just throw dry cashews in your blender.
2. Add all ingredients, including cashews, into your blender.
3. Blend until smooth.
4. Transfer to a bowl and then chill in fridge for at least 2 hours.
5. Enjoy on raw vegan tacos or as a dip!

Kale Chips
1 large bunch kale
3 to 4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
3 tablespoons dried dill
5 tablespoons nutritional yeast
3 tablespoons raw soy sauce (nama shoyu or tamari)
1/2 teaspoon celtic sea salt
1. Get one large bunch of kale.
This first photograph actually shows two bunches of kale, but I wanted to show you what the size is like, and I used my camera's lens cover to show you the scale.
So this photo shows 1 bunch of kale lying on the counter as an example, and it shows the other bunch of kale that has been ripped up and placed in a bowl -- to be made into kale chips.
2. Now we are creating "chips." Leave the kale quite big because they will shrink when dehydrated so try to leave each piece of kale quite big. Place smaller pieces of kale directly in the bowl. (If you have very large pieces of kale that have hard stems in the center cut the stems out. However, you don't have to cut the stem out of small pieces. The only purpose re: cutting the hard stems out is the big stems can be kind of dry and hard after being dehydrated.)
3. You should now have a great big bowl full of kale. There is a lot of airspace in the bowl because kale is kind of fluffy and sits on top of each other. Add all remaining ingredients into the bowl on top of the kale.

4. Wash your hands thoroughly and then mix all the ingredients together using your hands. Your hands will get coated in oil and spices, but trust me. You have to do it this way--it's the only way to get this raw kale chip flavouring mixture thoroughly mixed and on each leaf. Mix very very thoroughly by massaging the kale with your hands. You want to make sure the spices are quite evenly distributed. If you find the mixture is quite dry and sticking on your hands you have my permission to add one more tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil to this kale chip recipe. However, do not add any more than that because you don't want them to be too oily because they won't dehydrate properly if they're totally soaked in oil.
5. Your raw dill pickle kale chips should now look like this. (These are actually a bit too chunky re: flavor distribution--see how you can see chunks of flavoring on the chips? Try to get them better distributed than I did. I didn't add quite enough oil, I only added 3 tablespoons in total, but I probably should have added 4 total.) Another way to think about this is that it should look like a nice kale salad with a reasonable amount of dressing coating each piece, similar to salad. (By the way - This won't taste very good right now, so don't eat it like salad!)
6. Place your chips in a single layer on dehydrator sheets. You don't need any teflex or parchment paper or anything--just lie them on dehydrator trays. You don't have to lie them out perfectly; just make sure you don't have pieces lying on top of one another.
7. Dehydrate for 1 hour at 120 degrees. Reduce heat to 105 and dehydrate for a couple more hours. Check on them quite soon, because small pieces will crisp up quickly and you can snack on them right away! Compared to most dehydrator recipes this raw dill pickle kale chip recipe actually is pretty quick to make, and you can be enjoying them within a few hours. Don't eat them when they're still a bit soggy, they taste gross that way. Wait until they're totally dry and crispy.
8. We usually tend to consume these raw dill pickle kale chips really quickly, but they do keep quite well stored in tupperware or ziploc bags (provided that you've totally dehydrated them so that there's no moisture left in your kale chips - Ie. dehydrate them for 24 hours or longer!). Beware - kale chips DO NOT travel well at all because they are really fragile. So eat up!

Corn Chip Recipe
3 cups fresh raw corn kernels (cut 'em off the cob, of course!) (no canned corn please!)
1 1/2 cups yellow pepper
3/4 cup flax seed (finely ground, so use ground flax seed or grind some whole flax seeds yourself in a coffee grinder)
1 tablespoon lime juice (fresh) (you could probably use lemon if you have to)
1 tablespoon chili powder
1 teaspoon sea salt
1. Throw the corn and yellow pepper in the food processor. Process until almost smooth.
2. Add the remaining ingredients and process in your food processor until nicely blended for cracker/chip type texture. Don't over-process.
Note: Flax seeds act as the binding agent (keeps this recipe stuck together) so don't omit the ground flax for God's sake! This raw corn chip recipe needs flax!
3. Throw the mixture in your dehydrator.  As per the above photo, circles are the easiest to lay out in your dehydrator. But you can also do a whole sheet and then cut or snap them when they're partially dehydrated.
4. I usually dehydrate at 115 degrees for the first hour and then lower to 105 for the remaining time frame. Check them after four hours. If possible, flip them over and dehydrate for another four hours or so. Remember, dehydrating is an art and depends on lots of variables. So just check on 'em every once in a while.

Raw Flax Seed Crackers Recipe

Dehydrated flax seed crackers are a healthy raw food snack. I dipped mine in raw hummus.
Raw flax seed crackers are a popular snack for those on raw food diet. Even if you're just looking to include more flax seed in your diet or more raw foods, try this dehydrated flaxseed cracker recipe for a satisfying crunch. Flaxseed crackers are great with raw salsa, raw guacamole or raw hummus (pictured). I like to add garlic salt to my flax crackers, but this may not be suitable for those on a 100% raw food diet.
·                        2 cups whole flaxseeds
·                        approx 2 cups water
·                        1/4 cup tamari, Braggs Liquid Aminos or nama shoyu raw soy sauce
·                        sea salt to taste
·                        1 tbsp fresh minced herbs (optional)
In a medium sized bowl, cover the flax seed crackers with water and allow to soak for at least 1 1/2 hours. The water will turn to a gelatinous goo. Check the mixture, and add more water if needed. You want the mixture to be gooey, but not runny, and not too thick.
Stir in the tamari, Liquid Aminos or nama shoyu sauce, sea salt and fresh herbs. You can also get creative and add some extra flavors - a quirt of lime juice, minced ginger, chili powder or cayenne pepper - depending on your tastes.
Spread the mixture about 1/8 inch thick on your dehydrator's paraflexx or teflex sheets.
Set your dehydrator to about 110 degrees, and dehydrate for 4-6 hours. Turn the mixture over, and dehydrate another 3 - 4 hours. If you like a crispy and crunchy cracker, dehydrate a bit longer. I like my flaxseed crackers a bit chewier, so I dehydrate them a bit less. Break or slice your crackers into pieces when finished dehydrating.
Raw flaxseed crackers are an excellent snack on their own, or served with a raw salsa, guacamole, raw hummus or another raw food dip.

Enjoy and stay tuned for the date and location of the next Raw Food Potluck.


Monday, July 30, 2012

Raw Food Potluck

Hello!! The Raw Food Potluck was amazing! For those that were there, Thank You!! For those that couldn't make it, let me catch you up!

At about 5:45pm I was setting up and concerned that people may not show up. Then Jerry Aiello walked in the room and I immediately was ok if it was just us because our conversation was so very engaging. When Derrick Nichols entered the room I felt relief that more people were coming and slowly but surely the room filled. Not as many people showed up as I expected, as many more had committed than showed up, but it was perfect the way it was. Everyone there had a common connection and that was our desire to be healthy and connect with like minded people. There were no sour apples and we all had a great time. I learned a lot and was able to share what I have learned as well. The food was absolutely amazing and the company couldn't have been better. There was multiple requests to have this as an ongoing thing and how unique it is to be in Pasco as most similar potlucks are located down in Tampa or even further south. I requested assistance from the members to find a location we can use that won't cost us anything. A few have taken that on and can't wait to see what they find.

I was finally able to share my results and people were amazed and excited to share it themselves. I lost 15lbs and my Total Cholesterol went from 226 to 176. My Triglycerides went from 192 to 86 and my VLDL went from the 38 down to 17 and my LDL went from 148 to 120. These results were in a month, I was told that this wasn't even possible with medication. I would like to encourage people to look at their diet when having health issues or even for preventative care. We can heal ourselves through nutrition and avoid all the nasty prescriptions that typically fix one thing just to mess up another area. I'm sure I will update this blog on occasion but this will be my last post for a bit as this completes... Eat It Raw!!!

Friday, July 27, 2012

Still Eating a Plant Based Diet!!

Sunday was the last day of my Raw Food diet. Since then I've had bread twice and cheese once. I enjoy the way I feel enough to overcome the cravings I have for the stuff that was killing me.
After having cheese on Tuesday I noticed I have been craving cheese. I also was aware that I had no cravings like this at all during my Raw Food diet other than the first week. It shows me the addiction to cheese is more than a flavor craving and it is something that is stronger. This actually makes perfect sense to me with what I have been reading about insulin levels dropping and our body craving the things that are worst for us so that we can get a spike of insulin for a comfort food feeling high. For anyone trying to cut back on the junk I highly recommend the natural supplement 5-HTP. It assists the body in keeping the insulin levels even keel so that you don't experience the crash and cravings for junk. Ask away if you have questions about this stuff. My experience with it has been amazing. Thanks for tuning in. See ya Sunday!!
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Tuesday, July 24, 2012

30 days up on my Raw Food Challenge!!

Sunday night I finished my 30 days on the Raw Food Diet!!!

I am happy to report that I fit into a size 32 for the first time in a long time and my weight is down 15lbs according to the same scale I used to get my weight at the first doctor visit. Yup, that's right I also got my blood work done to share the results of the 30 days. I am going to hold off on sharing these until my potluck to keep the anticipation up!!

I have added exercise in the last week and look forward to working through the rest of my fat and building some muscles to replace the fat I've lost. I have been sharing the Potluck like crazy and looking forward to a large turnout. I spent some time at A to Zinc Nutirtion Shop in Hudson today for some items in preparation of the meals I have planned for Sunday. This stuff is gonna be delicious!!!

In case you didn't get the memo the Raw Food Potluck is on Sunday July 29th at 6pm at the Days Inn in Port Richey on US19.
Chow For Now!!

Monday, July 16, 2012

Come to the Potluck!!

I have been very busy trying to work out the last details of my Potluck I will be hosting at the end of the 30 days. I am working with multiple people to secure a location. The Potluck will have anywhere from the 20 people, already commited, to 45 people max, I would think. I will be sharing things I've learned about how much nutrition is tied to health as well as the evidence based on my pre-blood work and then post. I will share how much my high cholesterol has dropped and how much weight I have lost.

I am working with Grassroots, in Tampa to figure out a way to get some of their raw meals catered in. I gotta say if someone wants to take a look at this type of lifestyle change or for a 30 day diet this is a place that can definitely assist you. Shannon and I got the Buddy Plan last week for the first time and are continuing our orders this week because they were that good.

This was a great example of a meal that comes from Grassroots. The meal was awesome
and that pink, spicy, sweet and sour sauce was one of the best sauces I have ever tasted.

I am really looking forward to seeing the eyes of friends, family and even the people I haven't yet met light up when they see how delicious healthy food can be and why the bad stuff isn't good for them. For years I have heard I shouldn't eat this or I should eat that but until learning why and what these unhealthy meals are actually doing to me I haven't been inspired to change my diet. I find with knowledge comes power and I am committed to empowering the people at my event. I have 4 or 5 friends that have been inspired by this lifestyle change and have also taken it on and many more that are very inspired and curious about what this Ex-Meat and Potatoes guy has taken on. My meetup group link is below. Please go ahead and register if you can attend on July 29th. The location will be updated very shortly.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Have I lost any weight?

I've been talking to my buddy, who has taken on a raw diet of his own, and he is disappointed that he has some how gained weight after sticking to a raw diet for two weeks. We are both perplexed at how this is possible and I wasn't able to give him much tips other than to measure his waist line and keep track of that over the pounds lost. I am, however, continually furthering my education around nutrition and have learned it's physically impossible to burn more than 1 pound of fat a day and typically if you are losing more than that, like previous diets we've been on, it is mostly water weight and/or muscle. Muscle loss is very common with any kind of diet because when your body gets hungry it is easier to break down muscle than the fat. The secret is adding exercise to your diet so that your muscles are force to expand and feeding yourself whenever you are hungry. The more muscle you have the quicker and more efficient your metabolism is and if you let your self get to hungry your body goes into storage mode and everything you eat, including healthy stuff, is turned to fat for storage because your body doesn't know when it will be fed again.

Are you saying theoretically I could actually lose more fat by eating more? Yes, I am! The types of foods I am eating, vegetables especially, can be eaten as often as you would like and you will still feel better, look better and lose inches off your waist line. I have numerous compliments about my weight loss and how great my skin is looking. I've never really had problems with pimples but they do pop up on occasion and I have noticed that I haven't had one pimple since starting this diet. I also started to get sick one day with a sore throat and I was better the same day and felt normal. I feel amazing and don't get tired until the evening, I no longer have mid afternoon crashes after lunch. I also have noticed and increase in my sex drive.hehe These are just a few of the benefits of my raw food diet.

Shannon and I getting ready to enjoy our meal from Grassroots

I know the title of the post is "Have I lost any weight?" and the answer is yes, almost 10 pounds so far and I am approaching the last hole on my belt so my waist is definitely thinning out. I never thought I could get rid of these love handles without a ton of exercise but I have noticed they are almost a thing of the past as I looked in the mirror this morning. Over half way there and super stoked!! I will be having a Raw Food Potluck to share my results and the location is almost confirmed so look for that update and join me in enjoying the delicious raw meals we have planned for it!!

Monday, July 9, 2012

Raw Cashew Cheese!!! Success!!

I made a Raw Cashew Cheese today and it was a success. This morning before work I put a cup and a half of Cashews in water to soak during the day. I'm finding it takes some planning to execute this raw thing smoothly and without constant duplication. My next few posts will be adventurous!!

When I got home from work I drained the nuts and put them into the food processor and chopped them into smaller pieces. Next I added a 1/4 cup of water, 2 teaspoons of freshly squeezed lemon juice, two diced garlic cloves, 1/2 teaspoon of sea salt with a dash of pepper. Okay and before processing all that you need to also add two tablespoons of Nutritional Yeast(I don't care if you never heard of it. You need this!!) Now Puree!!! You can taste it at this point and add anything you feel is missing, mine was perfect and I left it alone. For the next 24 hours let it rest somewhere cool in a covered bowl. Now it should be placed in the fridge and it will be ready to serve upon it getting cool. It will keep for 5 days.
Bammmm Delicious Cheese for the whole family!! You're welcome. :)

Another thing I can't wait to share is Grassroots. It's a Raw and Living delivery service that specializes in taste good meals with health and well being as it's focus. I am finding it to be a very caring company. Spencer, an owner of Grassroots, was very quick to reach by email and very helpful in pinpointing what will work best for Shannon and I for a week of their Raw Living Meal Plan. I surprised Shannon with this at dinner last night and we enjoyed the first meal tonight. I will tell you it was a treat. I will tell you more about our first meal and the second that we get tomorrow on the next post. Tonight I really wanted to focus on the Cheese recipe because I know it will give my friends a healthy alternative to cheese.