Thai Asparagus salad

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This salad can be made in a variety of ways however, egg is traditionally asian. If you have an egg like substance OR some flavourful tempeh, those work amazingly well as well.

I think this is a great lunchtime or brunch recipe. I had this for dinner after a big gym session and felt like a needed a little something more. If you feel like you are missing something with this dish – I say add some lightly steamed Farkay noodles or some other small noodle to warm up your greens just a smidgeon.

Ingredients: 

1 romaine heart

1 handful peashoots

2 cups kale

1/2 long English cucumber, sliced

1 bunch asparagus ends removed

1/4 cup fresh chopped mint

1/2 cup fresh chopped basil (thai basil if you can find)

1/3 cup fresh chopped cilantro

4 eggs OR vegan thai tempeh

4 tsp oil for cooking

Fresh thai peppers diced to top (optional)

My favourite homemade FAUX FISH SAUCE

Method:

Create fish sauce and allow to sit for at least 1/2 the day.

On stovetop in saucepan bring 1/2 an inch of water to a boil. Add asparagus, cook with lid on for 3-5 minutes or until tender. Remove from heat and chill in fridge.

Prep your salad veggies in a bowl and set aside/refrigerate.

Eggs: Beat/whisk individually in small bowl. In small pan heat 1 tsp of oil for each egg or as needed. Add whisked egg to hot oil and cook until a little egg crepe is created. Remove from heat. Repeat for 3 remaining eggs.

Roll egg crepes into a tubes and slice thinly – set aside.

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Toss cucumbers and asparagus in a heavy helping of fish sauce and allow to marinate/coat for 5 minutes.

Top salad with marinated veggies, egg and diced peppers if desired.

Beauty greens.

Beauty greens.

Serves 4

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Not your Mee’s Bahn Mi

A beautiful thing

A beautiful thing

So excited I can’t even write an intro.

 Ingredients:

1 block firm ORGANIC tofu – pressed

(my press cheat is to place the block between two plates, wrapped in paper towel with a heavy bowl on top for about 20 minutes)

2 tbsp black sesame seeds

3/4 cup oats

1 cup diced fresh cilantro

1 diced/sliced tomato

3 large cloves garlic

1/4 cup sliced cucumber

4 Ciabatta buns – gluten free option is brown rice wraps which work really well, you’re welcome celiac friends.

2 tbsp tamari

1/2 tbsp Liquid smoke

1.5 tbsp vegan/vegetarian Worcestershire

1 large yellow onion

1/2 & a bit cups bread crumbs

2 seeded jalapenos

1/2 tbsp Ginger

1/2 tbsp Paprika

1 tbsp Cumin

1/2 tbsp Corriander

1/4 tbsp Cayenne

Salt & Pepper to taste

2 tbsp sesame oil

 

Method:

Get your tofu pressing if you haven’t already, this needs doing first. Next get on creating the Pickled Carrot/Daikon and Aioli before you start on the rest of the recipe.

Did you get pickling and aioli’d? If not, get back to those recipes, if yes, good. Let’s start.

Place all ingredients other than tomato, cilantro, cucumber and jalapeno’s in food processor. Blend until the mixture can be shaped into patties. Shape yourself some lovely little patties and hold on to your hats because your mouth is going to be revved up with food passion like you’ve never seen before.

 

A greater tofu patty was never created.

A greater tofu patty was never created.

 

Preheat a cast iron pan for 10 minutes to medium heat setting. Add 1 tbsp sesame oil and coat pan evenly. Fry up sliced onion and garlic for about 5 minutes or until translucent. Place patties in pan and cook for 5-7 minutes on each side, careful not to allow for too much burning to occur on the outer edges. Add remainder of sesame oil if your pan dries up.

 

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NOW you’re going to spread your bread or wraps with that lovely aioli you made then stack on your patties, toppings and FINALLY your pickled carrot delight. You’re going to top this off with some salt and pepper and enjoy, thoroughly. I opted to cut mine in half because it was a little breakable.

This recipe serves 4 or 8 snack-sized 1/2 sammies. It’s a big one so don’t bother with any sides.

 

Breakfast Sammy – 5 minutes

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If you only have 5 minutes. you STILL have enough time to have something scrumptious and colourful and delish. When you’ve always got great ingredients around, your creativity in the kitchen will start to flourish.

Ingredients: 

Vegan or regular croissant

3 Field roast Italian or apple sausages diced

1/2 cup arugula

1/2 cup spinach

1/2 cucumber sliced

1 medium tomato sliced

German grainy mustard sweet & hot

Method: 

Pan fry diced sausages.

In meantime cut croissant and later on goodness.

Add sausages, smoosh together and serve halved.

 

The art of the juice cleanse

 

Melon Juice

Melon Juice

Many times have I committed to a juice cleanse and never have I managed to document any of the experience for clientele or the general public. Because I have embarked on yet another cleanse I feel that I had the time and space to do this – because I’m not leading a group cleanse or making juices myself.

This time, I decided to go with a commercially purchased cleanse. I looked at several options before taking the plunge and took several items into consideration:

– what was the company selling the cleanse all about

– where were they located

– price & value

– ease of starting/receiving juice

I had initially chosen a company out of Calgary as this would be a place to pick up from that was easily accessible and had nearly 0 carbon footprint. Unfortunately, they took more than forever to return emails (terrible, spoiled Albertan vendors with no idea of the rest of the worlds customer service initiatives *steam*, this province is so alienated by the oil and gas industry) and when then did, they were not helpful, or cheery, with getting a cleanse to me outside of their prescribed days and times – even though I said I would pick up.

So, as it has been going lately, I decided to look out of province. Why? Well, their markets aren’t as inflated and their vendors generally care about having paying customers.

Enter “Raw Raw” Cleanse: http://www.rawrawcleanse.com.

It took me just 2 days and $200 per person for a 6 day cleanse to arrive via courier to my office. Tina, the proprietor was very helpful. We had a bit of a hiccup with juice types and after sending an email, I was assured the additional juice would arrive next-day (today hopefully) to get the sequencing of juices done right. Wow.

If you are interested in the juices I have been drinking you can find them HERE. 

 

DAY 1

The juice arrived at 10 am to our offices. It came packaged in a styrofoam cooler with cooling gel packs above and below the juice. The package also contained a juicing reusable bag, a note on the expiry, a 25% off coupon and a quick reference card for consuming the juices in the right order.

 

3 day juice cleansing

3 day juice cleansing

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The "how to"

Because I was ravenous, I opened up the cooler and immediately (took pics for all of you) then shook and guzzled my first “Clean Greens”. I’ll just put it out there, green smoothies are NOT my favourite, never will be. I understand their vital importance in balancing our vitamins and minerals, but they are sour, and so was this one.

Next, on my way to a meeting I grabbed the ginger berry. WAY more my style and super easy to drink with a lovely ginger taste – can’t complain.

I did a couple random circles around the office looking at trail mix and bananas, but I did not partake. Win. Next, Cool melon. This is where I learned I didn’t have any cool melon but double the almond milk variety. So I drank an almond milk one…it was great – a little extra nut fiber in there, but it was good. Cool melon – for real – on the way home I snaked a cool melon out of my boyfriends order. Simple, sweet and minty – I actually use the same recipe for watermelon martinis in the summer.

On the way home, I was feeling like I needed a nap. By the time I got home, I completely thought I would have one – except work got in the way a bit. I felt SUPER agro for about 1 hour, so I ate a handful of cashew nuts – raw ones. By the time I walked the dogs and puttered around with small chores, I realized I might as well just get on with it and do my day 8 of 21 Day HIIT challenge. During this 20 minute super workout I felt like I had OK energy and could cope with all the exercises without utter exhaustion.

I then used the next Clean Greens as a post-workout drink – it still tasted bad. I was in bed reading by 8:30pm and sipped away at the final Citrus beverage until I fell asleep. I LOVE this one. Spicy, citrus-y, deliciousness. At this point, I was feeling full and so far haven’t felt starving. I don’t think Jeff can say the same.

I fell asleep and was probably up around 3am. Not sure if the lack of sleep ability was the dogs or what, but it was a tough night.

DAY 2

Waking up was a bit hellish. I managed to get back to sleep by 6 am and slept until about 7:45.

Got out of bed, guzzled some water and had my first Clean Greens. I didn’t feel hungry at all, and I still don’t.

As I sit and write this I miss coffee. The smell, the taste and the buzz. Hoping that getting through my errands and a big dog walk will pull me into the land of the living by 11 am.

Stay tuned……………………….

I headed out of the house just after 10 am with my second (and favourite) juice in-hand to have a scoot through the country with my pups.  I took the dogs out for a walk in the woods and nearly left them there – woah nelly, settle down. A little bit more easily aggravated these days I have to admit. Hangry. By 1130 am I was still tired and now annoyed at my dogs.  Again, I drove home and thought I was going to crash heavily, and didn’t. Instead, I had a handful of cashews, brewed up an herbal peppermint tea and hunkered down to watch a very disturbing movie on Netflix. I hopped up for one of the many million pee’s during the movie and grabbed by third juice of the day for “lunch”. I have just taken the dogs out for another walk, wrote a letter and am now going to attempt my HIIT for the day: WORK OUT .

It is currently 7 pm. I made it through a HIIT and 12 minutes of a 20 minute spin – legs were far too tired – I also managed a bit of Yoga without issue.

I lapped up half a clean green for a recovery drink, with a small handful of cashews.

Literally a handful of cashews.

Literally a handful of cashews.

Let me tell you , my stomach was grumbling, so I had another cup of herbal mint tea and did some laundry. I think I may pay heed to the recommendation of “moderate” exercise. I don’t even listen to my own good advice.

I currently have two juices left and am feeling quite alert. Not aggravated, that was definitely a morning thing. Though, I have been fantasizing about food for the last couple of hours. Poor Jeff, went to his grandmas and she ordered a pizza. Ruthless day for him.

I would call day 2 a success……nighty night until tomorrow!

DAY 3 

Day three arrived. My sleep wasn’t nearly as interrupted as last night however, I still woke up a little tired. Getting the ball rolling on the day seemed a little less painless and I had no desire to eat or any hunger.

The work day was 10 hours long with no breaks, a few times I had to run to Jeff’s office to scarf down some almonds & cashews. Probably ate at least 3/4 of a cup of each throughout the day.

I thought about food all day. When I wasn’t stressing about something, I literally only thought about food. I had to plan a luncheon for tomorrow and ordered about twice as much pizza for 15 people as I should have. I could taste it.

I think today was the hardest day by far. Knowing it’s nearly over and hearing a little voice inside your head say “c’mon, just have a snack”……I’ve been beating that voice back all day.

There is one more drink to go before bed. I know I can make it, I think Jeff has at least 5 meals prepared for us to eat tomorrow – which is SUCH a bad idea when you’re coming off of a cleanse. Honestly – ease into it with soup and salads….or suffer the wrath.

The dirty bits: bowel movements still occurring however, not at the mass and frequency expected. I didn’t go at all yesterday, no urge either. Jeff wont let me talk about his poops in public. Sissy.

Overall, today I felt the most spacey I have and the most weak. I opted for a longer walk with the dogs instead of exercising at full out capacity.

Ok, I lied. I'm a workout addict.

Ok, I lied. I’m a workout addict.

I will say that removing meals does remove a sense of community and that is one part of the human culture that I quite enjoy. There is a certain void left in a day where there is no communion with others, a sharp empty space that only cooking and enjoying a meal can fill. That, is what I truly craved most in this cleanse.

Endive boats

I often look for light and refreshing QUICK recipes for appy’s or just snacks. I like this recipe because it’s completely malleable depending on the ingredients you have at home. What is a staple, however, is the endive. Red or green, doesn’t matter….but the red/purple variety add another splash of colour. 
Ingredients: 
3-4 Large endives, ends trimmed and washed. 
1/2 large cucumber diced
1 granny smith apple peeled and diced
1 small red pepper diced
1 shallot diced – or green onion/chive/red onion 
2 tbsp apple cider vinegar 
1 tbsp agave nectar or honey
1 tsp olive or grapeseed oil
Himalayan sea salt & pepper to taste
Method: 
Combine all ingredients except endive leaves in bowl. Allow to marinate for 1 hour or so. Taste to see if you are happy with the tart/sweet combo. I adjust often depending on the tartness of my apples etc…
Spoon onto endive pieces, add salt/pepper & serve.