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Corn Off The Cob

Sunday, September 23, 2012

In my mind it's still summer time and seeing the abundance of beautiful fruits and veggies at the farmers market just adds to that feeling. End of the season also means there's fresh corn available and if you're lucky you may find some that's organic (which would ensure that it's non-GMO). If you've established a relationship with vendors you can trust you can just ask them and you may find that theirs is pesticide-free and they do NOT use Monsato's seeds, and / or that their corn is an heirloom variety.

Corn Nutrition...You Might Be Surprised!
While the pearl-like white/yellow/red/blue kernels are notorious for being high in carbohydrates they really shouldn't be on your "do not eat" list. First of all, carbohydrates are not evil at all. They're very important, and contrary to what some believe (probably because of misleading media), will NOT make you fat. And that's not all. Corn is especially high in vitamin A, B vitamins, pantothenic acid, folate, and all minerals, even the harder-to-get  manganese, magnesium, and selenium. Surely, it deserves some respect! On top of all this it's very rich in fiber...in summary, this cereal crop takes the trophy for its health benefits. Eat it to help maintain good vision, to add anti-oxidants to your diet, for its qualities in aiding digestive health, providing you with folate, an essential vitamin if you're planning on getting pregnant, for maintaining strong bones, preventing anemia, etc.....doesn't it seem like a never-ending list? So don't be afraid of corn, unless it's GMO, of course ; )

Summer Corn Salad
(Serves 1 for lunch / 2 as a side dish / more as one of several dishes)
2-3 Ears of corn
Handful of cherry tomatoes
Wedge of red onion
Few sprigs of cilantro / parsley / dill
Juice of 1/2 or 1 lime
Splash of olive oil
pinch or two of salt
optional: sprinkle of black pepper or cayenne

* completely different flavors but I'm aware that some don't like one or the other and this salad is great with any one of those so use whichever you prefer : )

0. Husk the corn and, if you prefer, place in hot (but not boiling) water for a few minutes. Let the corn cool.
1. Cut the kernels off the cobs (be ready, they're going to fly all over the place) and put them in your mixing bowl.
3. Add quartered cherry tomatoes, thinly sliced onion, chopped herbs, lime juice, olive oil, and seasoning to taste.
4. Toss and serve immediately as a side dish, with soup or crackers, or pack some for lunch.

This is a great dish for summer gatherings too. I don't think you have to be a raw foodie to like this, and it's always a great opportunity to introduce the crowd to a simple but delicious salad along with some raw soup and / or crackers! Bon Appetite : )

The Dirty Dozen & The Clean Fifteen, 2012

Saturday, September 22, 2012

This year's list is out. Certain produce items are "ok" to buy conventional if you need to. You might be trying to save money and pay the extra bucks for some fruits and vegetables but not others, or you might just simply not able to find some of your favorite items among your favorite vendor's layout or in the organic section of the store. "The Dirty Dozen" list has those to insist on being organic and "The Clean Fifteen" list has the ones you may want to choose and decide whether it's something you'd like to save on or whether you should sweat it if you can't find it organic.  

The Dirty Dozen, etc...

1.  Apples
2.  Celery
3.  Sweet Bell Peppers
4.  Peaches
5.  Strawberries 
6.  Nectarines (imported)
7.  Grapes (imported)
8.  Spinach
9.  Lettuce 
10. Cucumber 
11. Blueberries (domestic)
12. Potatoes .....Kale & Collard Greens*


 ...and The Clean 15

 1.  Onions 
 2.  Sweet Corn**
 3.  Pineapples
 4.  Avocado
 5.  Cabbage 
 6.  Sweet Peas (frozen)
 7.  Asparagus 
 8.  Mangoes 
 9.  Eggplant 
10. Kiwi
11. Cantaloupe (domestic)
12. Sweet Potatoes
13. Grapefruit
14. Watermelon
15. Mushrooms  ......Winter Squash, etc... 

*NOTE: Forty-five produce items are examined by the Environmental Working Group (EWG) for pesticide residue. The dirty dozen is simply the top 12 of that list, meaning, highest in pesticide residue and the Clean Fifteen are those starting at the bottom of the list, and so on, with the least amount of chemicals left on them.

**If you live in the U.S. almost all corn (~ 85 %) you will find is Genetically Modified (GMO). Unless it's certified organic, you won't know whether what you're buying has or hasn't had its DNA "messed with". Therefore, even though they're on the "clean" list I don't recommend conventional corn....due to a lack of regulations. 

There are a lot of people working really hard on changing this and make it into a law to label GMO produce. Please take your time and do some research and consider signing the petition for the sake of your and the planet's health.
You may sign at:


Produce list reference: http://www.ewg.org/foodnews/list/

Rawsagna Made Easy

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

My fridge was still full of zucchini a while back (yes, I know, I didn't have the chance to put this up before now) and so all I needed was some mushrooms because, as you probably agree, the rest of the ingredients are regulars in every raw foodie's pantry. Lasagna is definitely not an everyday dish at my home but it's great food for entertainment. Even guests who are not familiar with raw food will appreciate it. And the best part: it's sooo easy to make, you will not spend all day in the kitchen.

(Serves 2)
1 large zucchini, for the "pasta"

~10 button mushrooms
1/4 red onion
shoyu sauce
optional: bell pepper, other veggies

6 sundried tomatoes
1 large heirloom (or other kind) tomato
chunk of onion
2 cloves garlic
few leaves of fresh basil
1-3 tbsp shoyu sauce
2 tbsp olive oil
sea salt

Nut Cheese:
1/2 cup Brazil nuts
sliver of onion/clove of garlic
optional: salt

1. Start by soaking the sundried tomatoes in a bowl of water for several hours (or at least as much time as you have).
2. Chop the mushrooms and the onion into small pieces. In a bowl, mix them with shoyu sauce and marinate your filling in the dehydrator for a couple of hours.
3 Peel and then slice the zucchini lengthwise into thin, lasagna pasta-like sheets. Place them on a mesh tray and dehydrate them for an hour or two but check on them every so often to make sure they don't dry out.
4. Blend all of the sauce ingredients until it reaches a smooth consistency, taste test and add more seasoning if necessary.
5. An hour before serving time, spread layers of the marinated mushroom, thinly sliced vegetables (if you're using any) and some sauce on the zucchini sheets (except for a couple top layers) and dehydrate them further for an hour at 118 °F (48 °C). Spread only tomato sauce on the top layers. 
6. For each serving, layer 3 sheets with filling and top with a layer of zucchini with the sauce only. 
7. Grind the Brazil nuts, onion/garlic, and salt in a spice grinder or make a larger batch and then you can use a food processor. The extra nut "cheese" you'll have will last several days in the refrigerator. 
8. Sprinkle the lasagna servings with the "cheese" crumbs and decorate them with fresh basil leaves.

It sounds like a lot "to do" but it really is effortless and worth the while. If you want to make a savory dish for lunch, dinner, to impress guests you have over, or to take to work the next day....you might just want to make this.