Tag Archives: kale

Ranch Kale Chips

kale chips

Kale chips are one of my favorite healthy snacks, and they fit right in with my rule to eat some leafy greens with every meal. Snacks are an added bonus. ๐Ÿ™‚

This recipe was also part of a class project to come up with my own kale chip recipe. They only asked for one, but I had a lot of kale, so I experimented with two separate recipes! The turned out great. The dehydration process really works to bring out the savory flavors in the fresh herbs. Two thumbs up!

kale chipskale chips

Ranch Kale Chips
Trying to eat healthier, but missing your old Ranch Doritos? These kale chips use a blend of ranch seasoning herbs to make delightfully savory kale chips!
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Prep Time
30 min
Cook Time
10 hr
Total Time
10 hr 30 min
Prep Time
30 min
Cook Time
10 hr
Total Time
10 hr 30 min
KALE
  1. 1 large bunch kale, de-stemmed and ripped into chip sized pieces
KALE CHIP SAUCE INGREDIENTS
  1. 1 cup cashews, soaked
  2. 1/2 bell pepper, seeded and chopped (any color)
  3. 1 garlic clove
  4. 1 shallot (or 2 TB chopped onion)
  5. 2 TB lemon juice
  6. 2 TB nutritional yeast
  7. 3 TB fresh parsley, chopped
  8. 2 TB fresh dill, chopped
  9. 2 TB chives, chopped
  10. 1/2 tsp salt
  11. 1/4 tsp fresh ground pepper
Instructions
  1. Blend all ingredients in a high speed blender until well combined. The sauce will be thick, so you might need a tamper to help it blend. If it is too thick to blend, add a little water - 1TB at a time until you can get everything mixed.
  2. Pat your kale leaves with a towel to ensure there is no excess moisture on them. This will help the sauce stick better.
  3. In a large mixing bowl, combine the kale pieces with the sauce. Mix it up thoroughly with your hands (I wear rubber gloves) until everything is well-coated.
  4. Spread the kale out on some dehydrator sheets and dehydrate overnight.
Notes
  1. Nuts are best soaked to reduce enzyme inhibitors and phytic acid, and make them more digestible. However, if you are in a hurry and you can't wait the 2 hours for your cashews to soak, just use 1 cup raw cashews and about 3 TB of water.
A Taste of Two Plates http://tasteoftwoplates.com/

Spicy Mango Lime Kale Chips

kale chips

Mmmmmmm….. Kale chips. This is a great healthy treat! Feel like you’re snacking and sneak more leafy greens into your diet!

Best of all, since these are made in a dehydrator with a temperature below 118 degrees (Fahrenheit), all of the vitamins and enzymes remain intact! They are much healthier than kale chips made in an oven. I don’t bake my vitamins out, especially not from my greens!

This recipe turned out great. I made it as part of a class project to come up with my own kale chip recipe. They were slightly sweet, moderately spicy, and had just a hint of tanginess. They did not last long. I had a hard time not eating them out of the bowl when I was trying to photograph them. ๐Ÿ˜‰

kale chips kale chips

Spicy Mango Lime Kale Chips
Serves 4
These kale chips are sweet, spicy, and tangy! They will give you a delightful kick int the pants, and you won't be able to stop eating them. ๐Ÿ™‚
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Prep Time
30 min
Cook Time
10 hr
Total Time
10 hr 30 min
Prep Time
30 min
Cook Time
10 hr
Total Time
10 hr 30 min
KALE
  1. 1 large bunch of kale, de-stemmed, washed, and ripped into chip sized pieces
KALE CHIP SAUCE INGREDIENTS
  1. 1 cup cashews, soaked (2-4 hours)
  2. 1 ripe mango
  3. 1/4 cup lime juice
  4. 1 TB red chili flake
  5. 1 tsp agave nectar
  6. 1/2 tsp sea salt
  7. 2 TB water (as needed to blend)
Instructions
  1. Blend all ingredients in a high speed blender until well combined. The sauce will be thick, so you might need a tamper to help it blend. If it is too thick to blend, add a little water - 1TB at a time until you can get everything mixed.
  2. Pat your kale leaves with a towel to ensure there is no excess moisture on them. This will help the sauce stick better.
  3. In a large mixing bowl, combine the kale pieces with the sauce. Mix it up thoroughly with your hands (I wear rubber gloves) until everything is well-coated.
  4. Spread the kale out on some dehydrator sheets and dehydrate overnight.
Notes
  1. Nuts are best soaked to reduce enzyme inhibitors and phytic acid, and make them more digestible. However, if you are in a hurry and you can't wait the 2 hours for your cashews to soak, just use 1 cup raw cashews and about 3 TB of water.
A Taste of Two Plates http://tasteoftwoplates.com/

Fundamentals of Raw Cuisine: Day 5

raw vegan sushi

Day 5 of Fundamentals of Raw Cuisine was so much fun! I got to make one of my favorite foods – sushi! Our assignment was to pick one kind of sushi to make, but we were encouraged to try them both out, which of course, I did! There was also no knife skills exercise today because the sushi projects required a lot of chopping. Tedious work disguised as fun. =P

I made hand rolls stuffed with vegetables and a mango chutney dipping sauce. For all of the time I’ve spent making sushi, hand rolls are actually something I never got around to making. It was a fun (and tasty) experiment. These hand rolls had a nice little kick to them between the daikon radish and the bit of jalapeรฑo in the chutney. Truth be told, I wish I had added more jalapeรฑo. I like my food to give me a little kick in the pants. ๐Ÿ˜‰

The recipe for the hand rolls can be found in Matthew Kenney’s book, Everyday Raw Express: Recipes in 30 Minutes or Less on page 80.

raw vegan sushi

The second sushi project was to make a raw version of a more traditional roll. I learned how to properly process jicama into a suitable sushi rice alternative. This was something I always wanted to try, but never quite got around to. We learned some great tips, like squeezing the starch out of the chopped jicama with a nut milk bag before using it. Removing it makes the jicama more neutral flavored, so it can be seasoned like a sushi rice. I also learned that if you squeeze it with your hands, your skin will be unbelievable soft for a couple days afterward. Added bonus!

raw vegan sushi raw vegan sushi raw vegan sushi

The next day, I logged in to my student account to check on my assignment grades and feedback. Each class has a few instructors to assist with review and grading, and I had no expectation that Matthew Kenney himself would be checking or commenting on any of the work from the online students, but LO AND BEHOLD, he saw my sushi assignments and complimented my plating and sushi skills! Yes, my day was pretty awesome (in addition to getting to eat all of the cool stuff I made). 

Matthew Kenney complimented my plating! Matthew Kenney says my hand rolls look great!

 The final project for this day was assembling a kale Caesar salad from some other components we prepared on day 4. There were rosemary croutons (which were very good – I made extra batter and turned it into a raw bread for sandwiches, which had a nice flavor and held up well), pine nut “parmesan”, and mushroom “anchovies”. This was all mixed into kale greens, which had been seasoned to soften them and a cashew based dressing, which was surprisingly Caesar-like, though to be honest, I’m not sure I remember what the actual dressing tastes like. 

Here are where you can find the pine nut parmesan recipe: Raw Food/Real World: 100 Recipes to Get the Glow on page 285

kale caesar salad kale caesar salad kale caesar salad

Other than that, my kimchi was moved to the refrigerator, and my homework for the day was to design a smoothie that I will be making on day 6, which kicks off week 2. I selected a variety of summer ingredients to use, with a purposeful addition of some herbs that I have growing in my garden. ๐Ÿ™‚

Fundamentals of Raw Cuisine: Day 4

zucchini tartare

On Sunday-Monday of this week, I completed day 4 of โ€œFundamentals of Raw Cuisineโ€œ. I probably should have spread it out over 3 days. There was a lot to do, and I only got to about half of it. More than half if it was setting components for other recipes up in the dehydrator. I can’t want to eat the finished products. ๐Ÿ™‚

As with every day before, the day’s work started with knife skills. All those pretty cubes of zucchini and the chiffonade cuts of basil went into a beautiful zucchini tartare, and the rest went into the blender for some rosemary croutons. The rest of the veggies were juiced. I’ve been enjoying a fresh juice every day after my chopping exercises!

knife skills knife skills knife skills

After checking on my kale chips (not quite done), I started the day off with a delicious pumpkin pie spice smoothie. This smoothie was a little like a raw “cheesecake” that I made for Thanksgiving last year – it didn’t actually contain any pumpkin. The flavors of carrot and pumpkin pie spices sort of trick your palate into thinking there might be some pumpkin in there though! The recipe presented to us in the course is an adaptation of the “Bunny Spice” smoothie recipe in Matthew Kenney’s book, Raw Food/Real World: 100 Recipes to Get the Glow. The main difference is that the recipe in the class had less carrot juice and used pumpkin pie spice instead of just cinnamon. After looking at the recipe in the book, I think I might have liked to try it with the extra carrot juice though!

pumpkin pie spice smoothie pumpkin pie spice smoothie pumpkin pie spice smoothie

While I drank my smoothie, I worked through the reading material about the usage of superfoods in raw recipe creation, and also a primer on raw vegan sweeteners. Raw honey is occasionally used, which is not vegan, and grade B maple syrup is occasionally used, which is not raw, but both in moderation. Many raw foods are sweet on their own if they contain rip fruits or sweeter vegetables like carrots or peppers, and don’t need much extra, except to function as a bit of a flavor enhancer.

That was where I left off on Sunday. I decided to give myself a little rest after spending all day in the kitchen on Saturday. All work and no play makes Adrienne a dull girl, right? ๐Ÿ˜‰

I picked up with Day 4 on Monday when I came home from work. The next assignment was a beautiful and delicious zucchini and avocado tartare. This one was really quick and easy to make, which was a good thing because I was very hungry when I got home. ๐Ÿ™‚ The recipe blends delicate soft pieces of zucchini with avocado and a tangy herbal sauce in a ring mold to make a dish that is both light in summer flavors and artistic on the plate. Ring molds really step it up a notch!

The recipe is in Matthew Kenney’s book, Everyday Raw Express: Recipes in 30 Minutes or Less.

zucchini tartare zucchini tartare zucchini tartare

 

After my belly was full, there was some more prep work to get those recipe components into the dehydrator. I currently have in my dehydrator: pine nut “parmesan”, shiitake “anchovies” (mushrooms – pre-dehydration photos below), and rosemary croutons (pre-dehydration photos below), which were made with the almond flour that I created after dehydrating the almond pulp from my nut milk in the previous day’s coursework! There is going to be an amazing raw vegan Caesar salad in my future!

mushroom anchoviesrosemary croutons

I’ve saved the best for last. My kale chips turned out great. The pile got smaller as I photographed them because I couldn’t stop eating them. Life is hard, I know. I made two batches of kale chips: ranch and spicy mango lime. I will add recipes for each of them in separate blog posts since this one has become quite long already. For now, you’ll just have to salivate on your keyboard. Sorry! ๐Ÿ˜‰

kale chips kale chips kale chips  

Fundamentals of Raw Cuisine – Day 3

kimchi

Over the weekend, I finished day 3 of โ€œFundamentals of Raw Cuisineโ€œ, a course offered online through the Matthew Kenney Academy. It was a lot of fun to have an entire day to work on my course material. Normally, I go to work and then I come home with limited time to work on the homework and recipe projects in the evening. I do what I can and try not to stay up too late, but I really love playing in the kitchen, so it’s a challenge. ๐Ÿ˜‰ On Saturday, however, I was able to finish up a full day’s worth of the curriculum material!

I started day 3 off with… you guessed it… more knife skills. If you’ve seen my first two posts about my experiences here, then you know this is how I start every day of the curriculum. My cuts seem to be improving a little bit, and the correct grip of the knife and hand placement is starting to become more familiar to me too. I find myself making it more of a habit now than having to think about where my hands go, which is a really good thing, for the sake of keeping all of my fingers un-injured. 

knife skills knife skills knife skills

 

After some reading material about soaking and sprouting, it was time to make almond milk using some almonds that we had been instructed to soak the night before. I am no stranger to making simple nut and seed milks. Hemp seed milk is my favorite to make.

What was new for me were some of the other ingredients that we added to the milk. There were some really valuable lessons learned here about flavor balancing with fats, sweeteners, and salts. We were instructed to taste the milk after the addition of each ingredient and notice how the flavor and texture changed. By the time I was done adding things to the blender, it was much more familiar in taste and flavor to the almond milk you might find at the grocery store, but without any of the typical additives of a store bought product.

Besides the plain almond milk, I made strawberry and cacao versions as well. That is why one has a pinkish color and another has a light brown color. The colors are subtle. No artificial anything here! I’ve been enjoying my fresh nut milks with gluten free oatmeal. 

The recipe for this almond milk is in Everyday Raw and Raw Food/Real World: 100 Recipes to Get the Glow, both books by Matthew Kenney.

homemade raw vegan almond milk homemade raw vegan almond milk homemade raw vegan almond milk homemade raw vegan almond milk

One of the things I am really loving about this course is the way they talk about using up leftovers so as not to waste anything. For example, almond pulp that is strained out of the nut milk is added to the dehydrator and then blended into an almond flour.

The next assignment was to make a delicious smoothie with our fresh almond milk and to learn about “smoothie building”. To think, all this time, I was just tossing things into the blender and hoping for the best, and there is apparently a magic formula that I should have been using instead. The recipe provided was for a “blueberry bee” smoothie. I could not find the book that this recipe came from, but it was published over on the “Pure Wow” website last year if you want to go have a look. I highly recommend trying it!

blueberry bee smoothieblueberry bee smoothie

After flavor blending exercises and smoothie making, it was time to make some kale chips. We were taught the basics of making our own sauce/marinade for the kale, and then we got to play around with it to make our own flavors. They looked pretty good going in. As long as they dehydrate properly overnight and taste good when I take them out, I will be happy to share my recipe flavors tomorrow. I opted to make a “ranch dressing” flavor and a “spicy mango lime”. 

kale chips kale chips

 

But, wait… there’s more! THREE lessons in fermentation and pickling were to follow. Anyone who knows me in real life knows that I’m a bit of a fermenting fool. I always have sauerkraut in the fridge with another batch fermenting on the counter, ACV fermented garlic, a random vegetable lacto-ferment, kombucha and jun, occasional wild fermented wine, etc. Probiotic fermented foods have made a huge difference in my health. They have helped me to reverse most of my allergy problems, and kept me from getting sick in the last two years. Anyway, I was really excited to see this material not only included in the curriculum, but included as early as day 3! 

For as much fermenting as I do, one thing I have never made is kimchi. That is partially because I wanted to be sure I had an authentic recipe so I could do it justice. Well, ready or not, there is a jar of kimchi happening in my kitchen right now anyway! It smelled really great going into the jar! Never fear, I followed proper protocol and pushed it all down below the brine with a leftover cabbage leaf. The picture of the vegetables floating on the top sure is pretty though!

kimchi kimchi kimchi

I had half a head of Napa cabbage and most of a head of red (purple) cabbage left over after making this, so… SAUERKRAUT SPONTANEOUSLY HAPPENED IN MY KITCHEN! Shocking, I know. Ha!

purple sauerkraut 

We also made some basic quick pickles, to which I added garlic, dill, and peppercorns. I have been growing pickling cucumbers on my porch and I was really excited that I was able to use something I grew myself in a recipe for the course. I have already put my home grown basil to use in all of the recipes that call for it.

dill pickles dill pickles

 

Another new thing for me was pickled ginger! I have always wanted to try making this because whenever we eat sushi at restaurants, the pickled ginger looks as though it’s been artificially colored and tastes funny. It will be a lot of fun to use my pickled ginger for when we made sushi at home!

pickled ginger pickled ginger

 

Overall, it was a very fun and productive day. I am looking forward to what comes next and eating some of those pickled foods!

 

 

Pineapple, Kale, and Basil Green Juice

Pineapple, kale, and basil juice

This is another delicious juice I made while I was spending a few days drinking green juices and smoothies. Pineapple is my long lost love. I found out I was allergic to it several years ago, and all of the fermented foods that I’ve been eating must have helped my gut to heal, because I can eat it again with no adverse effects! I’ve been going a little hog wild on it – about one pineapple a week. ๐Ÿ˜‰

Kale is one of the greens in my regular rotation for juices and smoothies. I will confess that I really don’t care for it raw other than in the form of kale chips. I don’t find the texture of most varieties to be pleasant to chew on, so into the blender they go! I do enjoy the flavor.

Basil… well, I’ve got this “little” basil plant on my porch that gives me a big handful (or more) every week or so. I’ve pinched a few blossoms off of it by now, and I’ve taken cuttings and propagated some more little plants, so I’m not running out any time soon. There are a lot of recipes on this blog that will use basil because… it’s free when you grow it yourself! =D I really love it as an aromatic herb. It really adds a whole new dimension of flavor to juices and smoothies when a handful is tossed into the mix with everything else. 

pineapple, kale, and basil green juice

Here are the health benefits of this delicious and refreshing pineapple, kale, and basil green juice:

Pineapple

  • Pineapple is used to treat digestion problems and inflammation. It reduces swelling, bruising, and healing time for injuries. 
  • Just one cup of pineapple provides all of your vitamin C for the day.
  • Pineapple contains numerous B-vitamins, magnesium, manganese, potassium, anti-oxidants, and beta-carotene.
  • High consumption of fruit has been shown to reduce your risk of macular degeneration. Dr. Caldwell Esseletyn teaches that macular degeneration is sign of heart disease – as the retinal arteries are damaged, vision becomes impaired. Fruit is not the enemy – these are the carbs that your body needs to be healthy and function optimally!
  • Because of pineapple’s beta carotene content, consuming it reduces the risk of developing asthma.
  • Pineapple’s high potassium levels can assist in lowering your blood pressure, if it is high. 
  • The anti-oxidants in pineapple help to prevent cancer. The high amounts of fiber in pineapple help to prevent colon cancer. Again, eat your fruits and vegetables – animal products to not contain fiber! Pineapple’s beta-carotene content also helps to protect against prostate cancer. Men, have some more pineapple!
  • While we’re talking about fiber, the water and fiber content in pineapple helps with “regularity issues”. ๐Ÿ˜‰
  • Foods that are high in antioxidants, like pineapple, can help with fertility issues, for both males and females. 
  • As with all produce, it’s good for your heart and cardiovascular system. If you don’t want to be a statistic (1:4 American deaths are from heart disease), eat more plants!

Kale

  • Kale is a good source of iron. Per calorie, it has more iron than beef. 
  • Kale also has more protein per calorie than beed. 
  • …And pretty much more of everything else than beef, except for fat and cholesterol. 
  • Kale is high in vitamin K and antioxidants, making it another potent fighter of cancer. 
  • Kale is a good source of omega-3 fatty acid. One cup of kale gives you 10% of the RDA for omega-3. This makes it a great anti-inflammatory food. Just don’t go eating a lot of omega-6 filled foods… like vegetable oils or corn fed animal meats. 
  • Kale is very high in fiber. It helps to lower your cholesterol and keep that colon clean (hooray for regularity)!
  • Kale is also high in beta-carotene, which makes it great for your eyes and skin.
  • Did you know leafy greens are also good sources of vitamin C? You don’t just get it from fruit!
  • Kale is high in calcium. Per calorie, it has more calcium than milk. As an added bonus, you actually get to keep the calcium in your bones when you eat kale. When you eat dairy, it acidifies your body, causing calcium to be pulled out of your bones as an acid buffer, for a net loss in calcium. Repeat after me: “dairy is not a good source of calcium.”

Basil

  • Half a cup of basil gives you almost all of your RDA for Vitamin K!
  • Basil has anti-bacterial properties. If you’re sick, have some pesto (without the dairy, of course)!
  • Like pineapple and kale, basil is also a good source of beta-carotene. This recipe is a beta-carotene trifecta!
  • Basil is a good source of magnesium. It helps your muscles relax. It’s also good for cardiovascular health, improving blood flow and reducing the risk of irregular heart rhythms (don’t forget – the heart is a muscle).  

Sources:

Pineapple, Kale, and Basil Green Juice
Serves 2
This refreshing and healthy pineapple, kale, and basil green juice makes enough to serve two people, or one person doing a juice fast (which was my case when I made it).
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Prep Time
20 min
Total Time
20 min
Prep Time
20 min
Total Time
20 min
Ingredients
  1. 1 pineapple
  2. 1 large bunch of kale leaves
  3. 1 large handful of basil
Instructions
  1. Juice all ingredients, serve over ice, and enjoy! ๐Ÿ™‚
A Taste of Two Plates http://tasteoftwoplates.com/