Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Collard Greens (RAW)

I have been hearing so much about the raw version of collards that I wanted to give it a try. I was apprehensive in the beginning but now that I have looked at some different recipes I think I have found what I would need in order to make this dish palatable for me.

Collards are one of the varieties of leafy greens that tend to be tough and in need of preparation before serving raw. Due to the thickness of the leaf it is perfect for various raw dishes and delivers a spectacular nutrient benefit.I discovered how to make the greens softer. My method is to break down the cell walls of the vegetable without using heat (which is most often used). I purchased them fresh from my local fruit and vegetable market then washed them thoroughly. I removed the stems and placed the leaves flat, one on top of the other. I put them in a plastic bag and into my freezer. The next day I removed them and let them thaw to room temperature. When this procedure is done the leaves are as if they were cooked (not overdone though). In this stage, you can prepare your collards anyway you wish. I proceeded to do the following.

Raw collards, frozen then thawed. Sliced into strips

To get the flavor I like in collards I would have to use a smoked turkey leg (lol). Since I am doing my 365 Day Raw Food and Fitness Fun Daze Craze for 2011, I am using a 95%  raw foods diet (without flesh foods of anykind) for my nutrition needs. The only other way I know to get flavor without cooking is to marinate. My marinate was easy because I only like certain flavors when it comes to my greens. I used Braggs organic RAW apple cider vinegar, sea salt, and a raw salad dressing I prepared earlier that night (see Day#11 for recipe). I don't have any specific measurements for these flavors because I like to approach my raw meals from the standpoint of my mood and physiological need.

In my RAW collard greens I also use sweet red onions, Leeks, and green bell pepper.

Once I have the flavors in place for marinating the greens I add any extra veggie that I may be craving at that time. In this case it was sweet red onions, leeks, and green bell peppers. I add these into the mix and let them all mingle with one another (lol). This meal is full of healthy enzymes and many other wonderful green benefits.

I cover my collards with plastic wrap to allow them to warm and let them happily blister with flavor.

Once all my ingredients are assembled in one bowl I give them some "alone" time (lol). I let them plan their mission of attack against any harmful agents, pollutants, and other toxic elements that they find when I deliver them (via eating them) to my system (hahaha, when you think of it, you are kinda helping your body fight when you eat RAW).
 The plastic wrap helps keep the warm air circulating while the flavors are releasing and coalescing. I will have pictures of the greens when I plate them with one of my RAW meals so please stay tuned!

As always, thank you for taking a moment and reading my blogs I really do appreciate the attention. Feel free to leave a comment if you like.

A day of raw #12

Today is the 12th day of my 365 day Raw Food and Fitness Fun Daze CrAzE for 2011 and I don't feel like really eating (lol). This isn't because I feel frustrated or starved or anything like that. I don't feel a need to feed (lol) is all. I a previous post I spoke about being driven to think about food while on the S.A.D. (standard american diet) and today marks a very special certainty within me and that is...

OUR MINDS DICTATE OUR NEED TO FEED when there is no hunger or other physiological reason. I don't think anyone really gives this any thought because we are so caught up in the midst of it. If you have ever been on a diet or situated yourself on a program that focussed on redesigning your eating habits, you have probably come to this realization before. I like to think that everyone has the ability to change unwanted habits. Believe me, if there were a way to get a phD just because you have mastered the ability to change unwanted habits, then I would be FIRST in line (lol). It's difficult but NOT impossible.

So let's get on with my RAW meals for today. Well....I had a salad for lunch (the same one pictured in yesterday's meal). For dinner today, I didn't eat a meal. I wasn't hungry and felt completely satisfied due to having had a few snack periods throughout the day. For my breakfast I slept in (lol). Worked late in the studio with my hubby on our music/entertainment projects (we write t.v. commercials, radio jingles, sitcom theme songs, and music for film). The current project has us making cellphone ringtones...hahahha. More on that later.

I made some absolutely mind blowing Maple coconut-pecan nuggets (Oh the Yum of it all). These were super easy to make but a little time consuming because I actually made it up as I went along (hahaha). I have a video going up on You Tube demonstrating the entire procedure but I must warn you. I use little or no measuring in this video because I have never made them and wasn't following a recipe. I can tell you that I was inspired by the recipe in the book "Raw Food on a Budget" by Brandy Rollins. Her's is called donut holes and when I read it, I thought to myself "Dangit, I don't have all the ingredients to make these." So I thought about it and figured I could make something similar. The rest (as they say) is history...hahaha
Maple coconut-pecan nuggets after dehydrating overnight
The amount I made was only to test them and make sure all the ingredients I wanted gave good flavor. I have the batter in the fridge and will put another dozen in the dehydrator soon.
This is how I presented them to my family..30 minutes later they presented the bowl to me...hahaha

I made a granola treat/cereal after making the nuggets. I make raw granola all the time and the recipe is almost never the same. There are some key ingredients that I like to have but the others are determined by my mood/appetite....hahaha. I love pecans, rasins, and cashews so most of the time those will be present. I eat almonds too (but they are not in my fav's list). In a pinch I will make the granola with almonds as the only nut in the entire batch.

This is my Raw granola. I usually eat it as a snack but it can also be a very filling cereal.

If you look closely you can see that there are 3-tray's filled with granola. I just broke the one large piece into several small pieces to make it easier to eat as a snack or a cereal.