My Life In Italy Attending The Awaiting Table Cooking School | Aria Alperts, Italian Journals

cooking italian Aria italian journey 01 My Life In Italy Attending The Awaiting Table Cooking School | Aria Alperts, Italian JournalsPhotographer: Aria Alpert

If my life in Italy wasn’t envious enough for you… and me for that matter …I’m gonna break down my days here in Lecce. Around 10am we all meet at the café for our morning espresso drink of our individual choosing. I first started out with an Americano but since it is so freaking hot here I have moved onto the iced espresso with the almond milk I talked about in my previous post. Oh and since I am being so honest with you all, I must admit, my one shot of espresso has moved onto two! It’s a pretty molto bene way to start the day, I gotta say.

So, after we all slowly enjoy each other’s company mixed with the gentle kick from the caffeine, we walk down the road to the famers market and buy all of our fresh produce and ingredients for lunch and dinner. After shopping we walk back to school in the hot summer sun and start our prep to cook lunch. Also, if we are making pasta, we will make 2 different shapes and we’ll enjoy one shape for lunch and the other for dinner.

This is the first time in a long time I have enjoyed eating pasta. It’s fresh and dense and chewy and light and hearty all the same time so less is more, which means you don’t need to eat a mound of it to feel nourished and get satisfied. And since it’s a blend of unprocessed whole grain barley and semolina flours, it gives it tons of fiber, which makes for lovely regularity for this traveler. Sorry…I’m just saying…

Ummmm…before I mention what we prepared, I just want to give a shout out to a very special particular G Monkie who informed me that I am the first and only one blogging on this site who is writing about non-vegan dishes. Thank you for allowing me to share my non-vegan ways!

cooking italian Aria italian journey 03 My Life In Italy Attending The Awaiting Table Cooking School | Aria Alperts, Italian Journals Continue Reading / Additional Photos / Videos

Fix Me Pumpkinseed Salad by GreenChef Sarma Melngailis

Sarma Melngailis pumpkinseed salad 01 Fix Me Pumpkinseed Salad by GreenChef Sarma Melngailis

On our menu it’s actually called the Pumpkinseed and Herb Salad, but otherwise referred to by me as my favorite breakfast salad. I wake up craving this salad. And yes, it’s meant to fix me. I started eating this specific green mix because I was told that I probably need more of the sexy mineral zinc in my system, among other things. I haven’t been feeling well (at all) so this salad is part of my healing plan. My books are all about how raw food makes you feel amazing. I used to feel amazing. Why do I now feel like shit? And how can I admit that? (Doing it now). More on the healing plan as soon as I can find more time to write about it. Back to zinc. Pumpkinseeds happen to be very high in zinc. And so my love affair with pumpkinseeds has been rekindled.

Years ago in another (not raw) restaurant, I put a pumpkinseed salad on the menu: lolo rosso and red oak lettuces, shaved bosc pear, shaved pecorino, toasted salted pumpkinseeds and pumpkinseed lemon dressing. While I love delicate fluffy greens like lolo rosso and red oak, what I really can’t get enough of are kale and herbs. I could eat bathtubs of kale.

So, I started making myself this salad at the restaurant. Kale plus a bunch of parsley leaves, cilantro leaves, and torn mint leaves. Add hempseeds (full of omega-3’s… good for so many reasons!). Then toss the whole thing in a dressing made of pumpkinseed oil and lemon juice, and plenty of salt (ideally Himalayan crystal salt). You can also use a mix of olive (or other) oil with the pumpkinseed oil since the flavor is strong, and good quality raw organic pumpkinseed oil happens to be super expensive. (ours comes from Austria, raw and organic). I love maxium pumpkinseed flavor so I use just that oil and lemon (and salt). Top this green pile with a handful of pumpkinseed macadamia parmesan.

Sarma Melngailis pumpkinseed salad 02 Fix Me Pumpkinseed Salad by GreenChef Sarma Melngailis Continue Reading / Additional Photos / Videos

Green Herb Soup with Chili Seeds By GreenChefs Heather Pace

greenherb soup chiliseeds greenchef heather pace 01 Green Herb Soup with Chili Seeds By GreenChefs Heather PacePhotographer Heather Pace

Green soup is great any time of year, and a tasty way to consume protein rich greens! Raw soups in general are cost effective, nutrient dense, and filling from all the fiber and water.

Play around! Even one ingredient change can make a huge flavor change, so the sky is the limit here. I also like adding a bit of tomato, or whatever happens to be in season. Avocado provides some body and creaminess to the soup, herbs give heaps of flavor, and a bit of lemon juice or apple cider vinegar adds a bit of acidity to balance flavors. Always remember to add a little something salty, like himalayan or sea salt, nama shoyu, or seaweed, to bring out all flavors.

Occasionally I like to garnish my soups with crunchy, flavored seeds. I like to make big batches to keep on hand. They store for ages in the fridge!

For the Green Herb Soup

1 cup spinach

1 large stalk celery

1 handful fresh cilantro

1 handful fresh parsley

1 handful fresh dill

1-2 tsp apple cider vinegar

1/4 avocado

1/2 clove garlic

Pinch cayenne

Salt, to taste

Hot water

Continue Reading / Additional Photos / Videos

The Raw Italian Artichoke Toss by GreenChef Natalia

Italian Artichoke Toss greenchef natalia 01 The Raw Italian Artichoke Toss by GreenChef NataliaPhotographer Natalia

When it comes to healthy living, I’m all or nothing. I love raw food, because it keeps me on track and feeling in control. Right before I even knew what this lifestyle was all about, I was a super junk food eating vegan. Like full on dinners of potato chips because, well, they tasted good and they were fairly natural, meat & dairy free. But healthy? Let’s get real. Overnight I decided raw was the way for me and haven’t looked back. Most importantly, I pushed through the transition and pumped my body full of as many greens as I could handle until I craved them as I once craved chips.

My lifestyle is rooted in pleasure—but not the kind of fleeting pleasure a bag of chips used to give me. This is a flow of pleasure. I love to go to the farmer’s market and hand pick every veggie, sniff the herbs and taste the ripe fruits. I adore creating in my kitchen. A little of this and a little of that = magic. As a life long foodie, you know I love to eat and indulge in all of the pleasures of gourmet raw food. But the most pleasure for me? I feel amazing. I don’t get sick, like ever. I’m completely blissed out. It’s deeply empowering.

Italian Artichoke Toss greenchef natalia 02 The Raw Italian Artichoke Toss by GreenChef Natalia Continue Reading / Additional Photos / Videos

Avocado Pesto Pasta By GreenChef Chloe’s For VegNews Magazine

0 Avocado Pesto Pasta By GreenChef Chloes  For VegNews Magazine

Last week we discovered GreenChef Chloe on VegNews and we posted her 4th of July dessert video. This week, we bring you her Vegan Avocado Pesto Pasta video (recipe link). This is a pretty simple and quick recipe, even I could imagine whipping this one up for dinner or lunch. Which means, I will be making this for sure in the next few days. If the recipes are too complicated, I tend to wait for a visiting greenchef to make them for me. I know, I am a very spoiled dark monkie.

Enjoy the video… and go checkout VegNews Magazine, they gave us an award a few years back. Best site to read at night, or something like that. No, I don’t know what that means either. Maybe we are too dark to be read during the day. Also, take a few minutes to see more recipes by Chef Chloe on her site, chefchloeblog.weebly.com

chloe coscarelli avocado pesto pasta 01 Avocado Pesto Pasta By GreenChef Chloes  For VegNews Magazine

Golden and Green Cannelloni | Recipe by GreenChef Matthew Kenney

matthew kenney recipe golen green cannelloni Golden and Green Cannelloni | Recipe by GreenChef Matthew Kenney

Golden and Green Cannelloni with Sun-Dried Tomato–Ginger Marinara, Mint-Basil Pistachio Pesto, Green Zebra Tomatoes, and Pine Nut and Black Truffle “Ricotta” (raw, vegan) Recipe by GreenChef Matthew Kenney

Recipe from the Entertaining In The Raw Recipe Book by Matthew Kenney

The first raw food dish (or at least, the first successful raw food dish) that I ever created was a green zebra tomato lasagna that I designed for my first raw food menu. There was never a single evening that it wasn’t the best-selling dish on the menu, which lies in the fact that it offers familiar flavors in a unique form. Raw food can often be intimidating, especially for those who have never tried it, and the components of this dish resemble a welcoming gesture—tomato sauce, pesto, ricotta, tomatoes. They work together, we’ve all tried them, and the dish is full flavored.

Continue Reading / Additional Photos / Videos

Lecce Forbidden Espresso | Aria Alperts, Italian Journals

aria alpert lecce italy espresso 01 Lecce Forbidden Espresso | Aria Alperts, Italian JournalsPhotographer: Aria Alpert

Well, I am here. In Lecce. The most quaint, glorious, Italian town I have ever experienced. Yes, I know this is the first time I have ever been to this country but I am still gonna stand by a statement like that. Lecce is everything I ever fanaticized an Italian town, along the coast would be. The friendly locals, the simple and rustic cuisine, the landscape, the vino and the…the…the (forbidden) ESPRESSO! Yep, my friends you read that right, I said it. I am proudly drinking it. It’s some good shit. I must say. I have missed you my espresso!

The espresso over here is totally different than in the states. Even the imported stuff doesn’t compare. I was talking to a local today about that and she says it has to do with the water here, which is loaded minerals and especially has lots of Iron. She says it balances the acidity in the espresso. And boy oh boy does it ever. Yum. Smooth, bitter, perfectly astringent and most importantly, it hasn’t given me the crazy cracked out feeling that I often get when I drink the stuff back home. This espresso just a nice little kick. A warm Italian embrace to get your day started out right. And while I am here in Lecce, or in Italy for that matter, I do believe I am gonna get into it. Well…I guess I already have.

aria alpert lecce italy espresso 02 Lecce Forbidden Espresso | Aria Alperts, Italian Journals Continue Reading / Additional Photos / Videos

Homemade Chocolate Liqueur (Bite This)

Homemade Chocolate Liqueur 01 Homemade Chocolate Liqueur (Bite This)Photographer V Blak

Now, I am not really a hard alcohol drinker, I would say I am more of a lover of wines. But when I was reading my Bon Appetit magazine a few years ago, I came across this recipe and couldn’t pass it up. I mean, chocolate liqueur. Damn. Yum! And it also makes a wonderful gift. Just be sure to make it about a month ahead of time so the flavors will have time to infuse.

Homemade Chocolate Liqueur 03 Homemade Chocolate Liqueur (Bite This)

Sign Up for GreenChefs Bite This Daily Foodie Inspiration Emails
Continue Reading / Additional Photos / Videos

A Raw Pumpkin Mousse Pie With A Coconut Whipped Cream By GreenChef Heather Pace

coconut whipped cream raw vegan 02 A Raw Pumpkin Mousse Pie With A Coconut Whipped Cream By GreenChef Heather PacePhotographer Heather Pace

For Canadian thanksgiving, I made mini vegan pumpkin pies. For years I’ve made raw pumpkin pies, trying sweet potatoes, pumpkin, squash, carrot juice/nut combo – but I have to say, I prefer this cooked style. Enjoy it with a big dollop of the coconut whipped cream that I featured in my previous recipe post.

What’s so great about this pie? First, there are no nuts in the filling, making it far easier for me to digest (and good digestion is the name of the game for me these days more than ever). Instead I’ve used the natural creaminess of the cooked pumpkin along with healthy raw ingredients to create a delicious pie.

Secondly, this is a low glycemic dessert, using a small amount of coconut sugar in conjunction with stevia to sweeten it.

What makes it a “mousse” pie? I’ve suped it up with irish moss and coconut oil to give it a light, fluffy moussey texture. In fact, I’ve made this a few times already, that’s how much I like it, and it holds well as a cheesecake and as a simple mousse/pudding too! Whatever you choose, I’m fairly certain you’ll enjoy :)

pumpkin mousse pie A Raw Pumpkin Mousse Pie With A Coconut Whipped Cream By GreenChef Heather Pace Continue Reading / Additional Photos / Videos

Homemade Vanilla Extract (Bite This)

Homemade Vanilla Extract 01 Homemade Vanilla Extract (Bite This)Photographer V Blak

I must admit. I have never done this before. Making my own Vanilla Extract that is. It’s also only been 3 weeks since it started marinating in its beautiful glass jar. I am not sure how it’s gonna turn out BUT it looks so beautiful we decided we had to share this recipe with everyone. Life is all about the journey…right… :) Jump in and let us know how yours turns out.

Sign Up for GreenChefs Bite This Daily Foodie Inspiration Emails
Continue Reading / Additional Photos / Videos

Coffee, That Dark Rich Demon In My Cup…Oh, Coffee!

coffee the dark demon inmycup juli novotny 01 Coffee, That Dark Rich Demon In My Cup…Oh, Coffee! Photography by V Blak (CC)

My uncle and I were talking the other day, he’s not a raw foodist by any means but he’s a health NUT and he owns a supplement company. He drinks green smoothies, makes everything fresh, eats only organic meat, goes on radical cleanses and so on as we do from time to time about health and food.

Our topic on this particular day was COFFEE! Yes, coffee, which I indulge in from time to time. The reason I brought up coffee was because I had read something that REALLY freaked me out. I mean, deep down I know that coffee is far from a healthy beverage. It’s a Fake-Out and a stimulant and bad for the kidneys and nervous system to some degree, it stimulates the bowls, and so on and so forth. Then you hear on the news sometimes that small amounts are actually “healthy for us”! Come on! I don’t believe that {although I listen in hopes that I hear something new and interesting as to why I should drink that espresso}. I mean, MAYBE the good {it’s a great pick-me-up when you are tired} outways the BAD sometimes and won’t really HARM us in a permanent way. Now that I can see!

But again, as with most things, we are always looking for an excuse to drink it or eat it! Right? We like to justify it. I mean come on, there are WORSE things, right?

Back to my story: the blurb I had just read that day was out of Sarma and Matthew’s Raw Food Real World. I had received the book as a gift about 5 years ago when it first came out and hadn’t really read much of it. Of course one of the first pages I turned to was the page on COFFEE and how bad it is for us.

coffee the dark demon inmycup juli novotny 02 Coffee, That Dark Rich Demon In My Cup…Oh, Coffee! Continue Reading / Additional Photos / Videos

Heirloom Beans And Greens By GreenChef Vanessa Sherwood

rancho gordo cannellini heirloom beans recipe greenchefs 01 Heirloom Beans And Greens By GreenChef Vanessa SherwoodPhotography Vanessa Sherwood

Beans and greens. Mmmm. One of the simplest, best tasting meals ever. And since I’m currently operating with three, count’em three stictches in my right thumb, my dinners this week have been dishes without a whole lot of chopping involved.

I’ve made lots of similar dishes in the past, but I’ve always used canned beans, since the thought of using dried beans always seemed like so much work to me. Then I came across this cookbook called ‘Super Natural Cooking’ by Heidi Swanson. In it not only is there a fabulous recipes for beans and green, but Heidi also mentions a company called Rancho Gordo that specializes in heirloom beans. I decided to order a few different kind of beans (there are so many amazing varieties) and am now totally obsessed over their giant Cannellini beans. Oh, and they are ‘kitty approved’ as well… :)

Yes, dried beans are a little more work, but with just a little planning ahead, it’s really not that difficult and sooo worth the extra effort. All you have to do is soak them in water before going to bed and then some time the next day, cook them up which takes about an hour to an hour in a half. In fact, you can find out all sorts of helpful tips and recipes at the Rancho Gordo website.

Beans and Greens (adapted from ‘Super Natural Cooking‘ by Heidi Swanson)

rancho gordo cannellini heirloom beans recipe greenchefs 02 Heirloom Beans And Greens By GreenChef Vanessa Sherwood Continue Reading / Additional Photos / Videos

Find us on Google+