GreenChef Sarma Melngailis | Spicy Thai Vegetable Wraps

sarma thaiwraps 01 GreenChef Sarma Melngailis | Spicy Thai Vegetable Wraps

Spicy Thai Vegetable Wraps
with tamarind dipping sauce (raw)

Tamarind pulp can be found as cellophane-wrapped, sun-dried bricks in Asian, Latin, and Indian markets. Tamarind pulp is the sticky interior of pods that grow on a variety of evergreen tree originally native to Africa. Tamarind, which is very intense in flavor, lends sweet-and-sour notes to dishes. Because the pulp usually contains seeds, you should always strain it before use. Pull off an amount appropriate to your needs and soak it in warm, purified water for about 15 minutes. Then strain the pulp and liquid through a fine-mesh colander into a bowl to catch the usable diluted pulp, leaving the seeds and fibers caught in the mesh. (Discard what’s left in the strainer.)

Recipe by Sarma Mengailis | Raw Food Real World (Harper Collins, 2005)

Makes 12 Wraps

For the wraps:

1/2 cup chopped raw cashews (dehydrated, if preferred)

1 tablespoon sesame oil

1/2 teaspoon sea salt

1/4 cup maple syrup

1/2 cup lemon juice

2 tablespoons chopped ginger

1 tablespoon chipped red chile, seeds included

1 1/2 tablespoons nama shoyu

1 cup raw almond butter

1/2 head savoy cabbage, shredded

6 very large collard green leaves

1 large carrot, cut into matchstick-size pieces

1 large ripe mango, cut lengthwise into strips, about 1/4-inch thick

2 cups bean sprouts

1 handful cilantro leaves

1 handful torn basil leaves

1/2 handful mint leaves (torn or cut if leaves are large)

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Smart Monkey Ani Phyo Joins GreenChefs | Three Special Raw Recipes!

smartmonk Smart Monkey Ani Phyo Joins GreenChefs | Three Special Raw Recipes!

Ani Phyo of SmartMonkey Foods has joined GreenChefs and is now a featured Chef. Ani will be doing shows and adding recipes and personal Vlogs about her daily life as a G Chef. Check out her delicious Portabella Mushroom Steak with Mushroom Gravy Recipe. The great thing about Ani’s recipes is that they are all so simple and easy with very basic ingredients that most people can find in their local stores. Ani also has a new recipe book coming out this spring called Ani’s Raw Food Kitchen, and you can buy her SmartMonkey Bars in select Whole Foods Stores and other health food stores or online.

Here are 3 Recipes from Ani that are quick and simple yet amazingly tasty:

Makes 4 servings

Tapenade is a rich olive spread popular in the Mediterranean. It’s quite easy to make at home. Measure out 1 cup of olives first. Then, pit them. Olives are easy to pit if you just push down onto a cutting board from above with your fingers. Plus the olive oil is great for your skin!

Homemade Black Olive Tapenade:

1 clove garlic

1 cup black olives, pit

1/2 lemon’s juice, about 1 Tablespoon

2 Tablespoons olive oil

1 Tablespoon thyme

2 teaspoons rosemary

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GreenChef Sarma Melngailis | Organic Antioxidant Cocktails

sarmawine GreenChef Sarma Melngailis | Organic Antioxidant Cocktails

“Forget the artificial colors and flavorings – the calorie packed sugar syrup mixes you have to give a second thought to indulging in. Today the trend is all about healthy organic drinks that mix pure spirits and wine with fresh antioxidant rich fruits and juices. GreenChef Sarma Melngailis, owner of hip New York restaurant Pure Food and Wine, shared 3 of her delicious antioxidant boosting organic cocktails in the summer issue of Women’s Health. Serve them at your next dinner party for a clean healthy buzz–in moderation of course!” – Indulge

Sarma’s Organic Antioxidant Cocktails (raw)

Recipe by Sarma Mengailis | Raw Food Real World (Harper Collins, 2005)

Serves 6

White Wine Sangria:

(Rich in polyphenols and plenty of other antioxidants.)

1 Green Apple

1 Orange

1 Pear

1 Plum

1 Cup Pineapple

1 Cup Watermelon

2 TB Fresh Squeezed Lemon Juice

2 TB Blue Agave Nectar

1 Bottle Sauvignon Blanc


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What’s in Season During The Month of July

inseasonjuly Whats in Season During The Month of July

Whether you grow your own food or shop at your farmer’s market, eating what’s in season will assure you the freshest produce–picked at its peak and brimming with flavor.

July being the middle of the summer, brings us the most variety of fruits and vegetables at their peak or just coming into season. This is the time that the heirloom tomatoes, red bell peppers and cucumbers will start showing up at your market in abundance. I can’t even stop thinking about all the uses for jalapeno now. I want to put it in everything! Expect to see a lot of recipes from me soon with jalapeno and cucumber and tomatoes and other summer produce in season. : ) Continue Reading / Additional Photos / Videos

The Healthy Fat | Avocados

avocado2 The Healthy Fat | Avocados

Before the avocado traveled north and become the popular fruit we know today, it had quite the slanderous reputation and was banned by the priests. It was known and used as an aphrodisiac sexual stimulant. The original Aztec name for the fruit was “ahuacatl” and means “testicle”, in reference of the avocados shape.

Native to Central and South America and dating back to 8,000 B.C., the avocado (ahuacatl) fruit has become one of the most popular crops in California. Mexico is still the world’s leading producer of avocados, with Brazil and California as the second largest producers. Avocado trees from Mexico were first planted in the U.S. in 1871 in Santa Barbara. Today, with over 7,000 avocado groves in California, almost 90% of the avocados grown in the U.S. are harvested in Southern California, with San Diego County producing 60% of that. 1 avocado tree is capable of producing between 150-500 avocados per year. Despite there being over 500 varieties of avocados, only 8 of them are grown commercially in California. The most popular Hass variety is grown year-round in California and makes up for almost 95% of the avocados grown. The other varieties are Fuerte, Pinkerton, Zutano, Reed, Lamb Hass, Gwen and Bacon. Continue Reading / Additional Photos / Videos

Rich Chocolate Dream Cake

chocolate dream cake vegan Rich Chocolate Dream Cake

If your dreaming of a rich, dense, smooth and creamy chocolate raw vegan cake, this is the one to try. This is the type of cake you can only eat a few bites of at a time, because it is that rich, but yet it is still surprisingly healthy. It has a silky velvety chocolate filling that has the denseness of a cheesecake, but without the tang. Just pure chocolate heaven. If you like that sort of thing, this will be heaven on a plate for you.

As much of a chocolate lover as I am, I have to say it was actually a little too rich for me. Next time I will probably try to make it a little lighter and with slightly less chocolate in it. Well worth trying again though. The entire G Living staff love this one and have requested I make this one again as soon as possible.

Chocolate Dream Cake (raw)

For the Crust:

1 Cup Almonds

1/4 Cup Cocoa Powder (Cacao Powder)

2 TB Agave Nectar

1 Tsp. Virgin Coconut Butter

2 Tsp. Vanilla Extract

1/4 Tsp. Sea Salt

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Green Tea | Once Again Green is Good

green tea 004 Green Tea | Once Again Green is Good

My favorite beverage just keeps getting better for you. Which should also make it more palatable to my co-workers, whose computers keep force quitting due to my constant kettle boiling. (Electrical circuitry at start-ups leaves a lot to be desired.) Yeah, so sorry about losing all of those unsaved changes to your edits/designs/documents, but look at all the benefits. To, er, me.

Here are seven reasons to sip the green stuff…

Nix cancer. The polyphenols or antioxidants help keep cancer at bay. Studies show that people who regularly drink green tea reduce the risk of developing “breast, stomach, esophagus and/or prostate cancer.”

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Mind-blowing, Palate-altering Fruit

miracle fruit party 02 Mind blowing, Palate altering Fruit

How many mind-blowing experiences are there out there? I’m talking about experiences that excite and surprise you beyond your wildest dreams. Discounting illicit drugs — which while certainly mind blowing could result in the very real possibility of experiencing the inside of a cell — not that many. Sky diving, scuba diving, first viewing of 2001: A Space Odessey, the first listening of Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club band, childbirth or certain acts leading up to that? Well for all you thrill seekers here’s a new one for you: a fruit that temporarily alters your taste buds, turning sour foods sugar sweet.

Dubbed the miracle fruit, Synsepalum dulcificum, is appearing as the guest of honor at tasting parties all over the country – the gastronomically adventurous eager to ingest the small red berry which can allegedly turn lime wedges into candy, rhubarb into sugar sticks, lemons into lemonade, Tabasco sauce into donut glaze and rich stout beer into milkshake. The miracle fruit is native to West Africa “and has been known to Westerners since the 18th century”. The unusual reaction is due to a protein called miraculin “which binds with the taste buds and acts as a sweetness inducer when it comes in contact with acids”.

miracle fruit party 01 Mind blowing, Palate altering Fruit Continue Reading / Additional Photos / Videos

GreenChefs Russell James | Stuffed Vine Leaves with Mint Cashew Aioli

stuffedleaves1 GreenChefs Russell James | Stuffed Vine Leaves with Mint Cashew Aioli

“Oh man, I don’t know which of Russel’s recipes I want to try first. I love stuffed vine leaves and these look so amazing. I’m not so much into nori and the salty soy sauce flavors, they’re ok sometimes. What I really love though is Mediterranean food. Hummus, pita, tabouli, couscous, olives, and especially dolmas! I have never come accross grape leaves though in the store, not even the canned kind. Maybe I haven’t been looking in the right isles or hard enough, or maybe you can only get them at special greek grocers or something. I would love to find the fresh organic grape vine leaves. I’ve been scouring the internet to see if there is a speciality source I can order from online. My search so far has turned out disapointing. All I can find is recipes or the canned kind. I guess you have to live near a vineyard and go beg them in the spring for their leaves. But anyways, if you can find some good vine leaves, this recipe looks worth trying." – Indulge

Stuffed Vine Leaves with Mint Cashew Aioli (raw)

Makes 16+ stuffed vine leaves
Time: 30 mins (once you’ve got the hang of rolling the things)
Ease rating: ***
Equipment: Knife, Food Processor
What you’ll need to do ahead of time: Pickle the vine leaves, soak the sun-dried tomatoes.

For the Vine Leaves:

3 Cups Cauliflower or Parsnip

1/2 Cup Olive Oil

1 Clove Garlic

1/2 Cup Pine Nuts

3 Tsp Lemon Zest

2 TB Lemon Juice

1/2 Tsp Cinnamon

1Tsp Sea Salt

5 Spring Onions

1 Cup Sun-dried Tomatoes, soaked for 2+ hours, then chopped into thin strips

2 Cups tightly packed fresh mint, minced

1/2 Cup Raisins, roughly chopped

*Pickled vine leaves

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Can Tomatoes Slow the Aging Process?

tomato 051 Can Tomatoes Slow the Aging Process?

Prevention. That’s the most commonly used buzzword when it comes to skincare. Washing your face with the proper soap prevents clogged pores. Using the right moisturizer prevents wrinkles. Great advice if you’re just starting out, but what about those of us who’ve already overzealously worshipped the sun or partied a bit too much during college? What then?

The most common answers to this question “a healthy diet”, “at least eight glasses of water perday” and “plenty of rest”. But can healthy eating, adequate hydration and lots of sleep undo the effects of sun damage and a few too many Marlboro lights?

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GreenChefs Sarma Melngailis | Shiitake, Avocado, and Pickled Ginger Sushi Rolls

sarma sushi rolls GreenChefs Sarma Melngailis | Shiitake, Avocado, and Pickled Ginger Sushi Rolls

Shiitake, Avocado, and Pickled Ginger Sushi Rolls (raw)

In this recipe, we call for young ginger, which is a paler, almost pinkish color, and milder in taste then mature ginger-root. Along with un-toasted (and toasted) nori, you can find it at Asian markets, but the more commonly available ginger will work well, too. The beet juice used in pickling the ginger that goes into the rolls is optional, but we highly recommend it because it looks so pretty. And if you really want to cheat, you can just buy pickled ginger, if you can find any without preservatives.

If you can’t find fresh shiitakes, you can substitute another wild mushroom or thinly sliced portobello, or even use dried shiitakes that have been re-hydrated in purified water.

Wasabi is a very spicy variety of Japanese horseradish — fresh is best but it’s hard to find and extremely expensive. You can buy powdered wasabi at most health food stores and Asian markets and mix with water according to the directions to make a paste.

Try other variations of sushi, using different vegetable fillings.

“I like using jicama as a substitute for rice because it has a sweet quality to it that is similar to the seasoned sweetness of Japanese sushi rice. This is nice to serve if you are having guests. You can prepare all of the components ahead of time (except the avocado, which should always be sliced fresh) and then roll the sushi just before serving. We use biodegradable chopsticks at the restaurant that are made of corn and wheat — I love that.” – SM

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Urban Farmers Are Cooler Than Actual Farmers

city farmer Urban Farmers Are Cooler Than Actual Farmers

Urban farmers isn’t the name of a hot new musical act (though it should be), or a euphemism for teenagers handy with da hydroponics — it’s a real and revolutionary movement that’s taking place all over America. Forget cold comfort farm, city dwellers can now enjoy this agrarian pastime from the comfort of their own apartments.

Just ask Denniston and Marlene Wilks, who grow scallions and bitter watermelons “in the shadows of the elevated tracks toward the end of the No. 3 line in East New York, Brooklyn.” (via the New York Times) They set up their urban farm with the help of the Parks Department gardening program, GreenThumb, who assisted them in building raised beds of compost as “heavy metals are common contaminants in city soil because of vehicle exhaust and remnants of old construction”.

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