Tuesday, 23 November 2010

A New Way of Eating, A new Way of Living: Part 2 - Soups, Salsas, Salads and More

In my version of the raw-food diet, juicing http://msellaneous.blogspot.com/2010/11/new-way-of-eating-new-way-of-living.html is complemented by what I prepare for my meals.

My breakfast, lunch and dinner meals need to be varied so I don't tire of what I eat. I highly emphasize the importance of organic ingredients, http://www.organicfoodcorner.com/resources/organic-food-vs.-non-organic-which-is-better.php so I get the much needed nutrients to bring my body to a healthy state where it can heal itself without taking medication, and to also keep out the toxins found in regularly farmed and produced/processed foods.

So what do I eat for my main courses? Mostly soups, salsas and salads...

My soups are made from the fiber leftover from juicing. They being organic means that they will be still rich in nutrition even after the juice has been squeezed out.

My typical home-made soup is prepared this way:
1. Melt 1/2 tsp of butter, add finely sliced leeks, add the vegetable fiber left over from juicing (carrots, squash, sweet potato for my orange-colored soup; broccoli, spinach for my green-colored soup)
2. add cut up celery, a diced potato or 2, some herbs, and season with sea salt and pepper.
3. Then add enough filtered water to bring it to a boil. When potatoes are done, check consistency and add more water to thin out when necessary.
4. The last step before serving is to blender the soup (to aerate and and give it a light and smooth consistency), pour into a bowl, and sprinkle some chopped fresh parsley or coriander.
Optional: sprinkle grated parmesan cheese.

My salsas, all made out of fresh ingredients from scratch, come in handy in a variety of ways: as accompaniment to chips; as a side dish or garnishing for a main course. For a basic salsa recipe go to http://msellaneous.blogspot.com/2010/06/breakfast-at-acanela-restaurant.html. Vary by adding other fruit or vegetable ingredient/s of your choice.

Here are a few of my salsa favorites:

Pineapple-Kiwi salsa

Avocado-Tomato salsa

Mango-Tomato salsa

Guacamole...recipe link: http://msellaneous.blogspot.com/2010/11/health-food-chunky-guacamole.html

My salad creations are made impromptu, but planned in a way...all put together depending on what I have in my veggie drawer, what I prepared as salad topping, or left overs,...

or set up as a salad station, for each to concoct his own.

Here is how I prepare my basic salad ingredients:
1. Salad greens - the greener and colorful, the better, like spinach, arugula, mesclun, romaine, mache
After cleaning and rinsing the leaves, soak them in a bowl of filtered water sprinkled with a capful of organic apple-cider vinegar (ACV). This solution will rinse off further any residue left on the leaves and hydrate them to make them more firm and crunchy, hence, I use filtered water and organic ACV as they get into the salad leaves.

2. Quinoa - cook like rice on the rice cooker or stove-top. The proportion is 1 cup quinoa to 2 cups of water. Bring to a boil and turn off when there is almost no water left, and keep slightly uncovered so the left over water is allowed to steam off. The quinoa dries up without getting burned. Set aside to cool.

Quinoa is the highest source for protein in the plant kingdom http://www.whfoods.com/genpage.php?dbid=142&tname=foodspice plus it is a rich source for manganese, magnesium, iron, tryptophan, copper, phosphorous, all good for cardiovascular health, may help prevent breast cancer and gallstone, good for migraine sufferers, among other things. The secret to my quinoa food preparation is the vinaigrette salad dressing which I make before hand; then, add dice onion plus the other diced vegetables. The flavor varies from ala Mediterranean, Greek, to Mexican all designed by what ingredients are added...I'm sure you have your own ideas of how you want to garnish your quinoa. Do share them with me, please.

3. Vinaigrette - 2 Tbsp. ACV + 1 tsp. of mustard (less if Dijon mustard) + 4 Tbsp EVOO - a little at a time while blending, sea salt and pepper to taste. Add one finely diced red onion. Add other diced or cut up toppings you want to include in your salad. here are some ideas.

Eating this way has been another creative outlet for me. I am using organically grown fruits, nuts and vegetables, whenever they are available. Occasionally, I eat free range-chicken, grass-fed meat, and fish caught in the wild.

Pan-fried salmon steak with an added Mexican touch in the mango salsa and the salad ingredients

My own recipe of "Scampi" with a spinach-curried brown rice salad

Some of my salad creations, using leftovers...

Inspired by the Macho Salad served at Bandera in Newport Beach, CA, this is made with mesclun salad leaves, leftovers of roasted chicken breast , with the addition of dates, avocado wedges, 
slivered almonds and cherry-grape tomatoes

Greek inspired salad on a bed of arugula, with left over pan-fried chicken breast, 
pecan nuts and pickled olives

Making my food preparations beautifully palatable is an artistic expression. Each ingredient I use has a health benefit. Although I spend more time in the kitchen now, I don't mind it as I know what I am feeding my family and guests. I win the hearts of many through their stomachs!

Remember, we need to turn into gourmands and stop being gluttons. Eat Healthy.

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