Why Lemony?
(the “About Me” page)

February 28, 2010

week 2

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Immunity Smoothie - from Matthew Kenney

1 1/2 c frozen banana
1 packet (100g) frozen Acai
1 c frozen blueberries
2 cups coconut water
1 t vanilla
1 pinch sea salt

Those pointy things are young coconuts with part of the outside hacked off. You have to really go at them with a cleaver to get them cracked enough to get the water out. It was fun!

Well, I went a little too fast, went a little crazy with the trying of new foods on the day I made the immunity smoothie and curried cashews. Those were the next two recipes in "Everyday Raw" that Jenny and I are using to learn about preparing raw foods. I ended up with an unhappy stomach after trying that winning combination. But I learned a lot from the experience, as follows:

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1. The immunity smoothie is SO GOOD that even I didn't mind a bit that I was drinking cononut water. Not even kidding. All the rich, deep berry flovor was complemented perfectly by the creamy softness of the coconut. However, it was so good that I couldn't stop myself from drinking a whole smoothie cup full of the stuff. (In my house, a smoothie cup holds about 2 1/2 cups.) As you can imagine, this was not a good idea. Especially since I had already eaten another smoothie that day for breakfast. My intestines could not handle it, and they revolted.

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2. You have to be really patient when you're using a dehydrator to prepare your food because it takes days, not minutes or even hours, to dehydrate a lot of the foods in the recipes we're making. Case in point- curried cashews. After soaking the cashews to get rid of the enzyme inhibitors they're coated with, you dehydrate them for 48 hours. Then you mix them up with agave, curry powder, cayenne, and salt, and dehydrate for 24 hours. Break up any clumps, and dehydrate for another 24 hours. Presto! Done! So it's a very different mindset. As long as you plan in advance, though, it's very simple to mix things up and spread them in the dehydrator and check on them once a day. It's kind of like taking care of plants. (Ha ha! It IS taking care of plants!)

3. The great thing about curried cashews is that by the time you get all the spices on and spread them all out on the dehydrator racks, they're already edible and completely delicious, so I kept opening the lid and snagging one. Dangerous. Especially since I found that cayenne is not my friend yet. We'll need a little longer to get acquainted. I have never liked spicy food (except for kim chi) and apparently it's for good reason. My stomach was not happy with them in there. But they're so yummy- so sweet with a little kick at the end. Billy and Layli liked them very well and didn't have the stomch upset I did, so I'm pretty sure it's just me. Here's the recipe for those of you that like a little spice in your life:

Curried Cashews from Matthew Kenney

6 1/2 c cashews, soaked 1-2 hours, drained, and dehydrated 48 hours
2 1/2 T agave
1/4 c maple syrup (I just used more agave)
2 t curry powder
1/2 t cayenne pepper
1 3/4 t sea salt

Mix it all up in a bowl, spread on dehydrator screens and dehydrate for 2 days. Separate the large clumps and dehydrate 2 more days.

4. To sum up, I learned that it's really easy to overdo it on raw food. It's not meant to be eaten in large quantities because it's such concentrated, potent stuff. Also, it should be simple and harmonious with your body's needs.

5. Organic blueberries and acai berries taste amazing together. Unbelievable.

6. Curried cashews make fun Ayyam-i-Ha presents in little jam jars;)

P.S. My intestines calmed down after a couple days. My friend Naifen tells me that coconut water is a cooling food (according to the Chinese rubric of heating/cooling foods) and can speed up your digestion quite a bit. Since I don't need any help in that department, coconut water is not a good choice for me, at least at this time of year. However, if you have a hot body type (That doesn't sound quite how I mean it, I think, but how else can I say it?) this very cooling smoothie will be heavenly for you.

Also, in defense of smoothies, I've been eating a green smoothie for breakfast every day for the last couple weeks and it's been just fine, digestion-wise. That's kind of amazing for me, seeing as I have never, since I was old enough to choose my own breakfast, been willing to forsake my daily bowl of cereal. Never. No fruit, no protein of any kind, no juice. But I tried it and they're really yummy, in my opinion. I especially like how they make me feel full and energized and without that low blood sugar feeling around lunch time that I had become so used to.

Here's what I put in my breakfast smoothie-
1. Fruit: usually a frozen banana, an apple and/or some berries, dried goji berries, or whatever I have on hand.
2. Nuts and seeds, just a handful: soaked golden flax seed, pecans, pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds, and/or cashews, sometimes a little dried coconut.
3. Powders: GREEN Superfood, Hemp Protein
4. Water and sometimes some juice

Blend it all up till it's smooth and green. I try to vary the flavors every day to keep things interesting. Sometimes I add some cocoa powder to make it chocolatey (which actually works really well with green powders and all the nuts) or add pineapple juice and citrus fruits to make it tropical. At first, I added a squirt of agave syrup too, but after a few days, it seemed too sickly sweet and I decided that the fruit made it sweet enough. Next I'm going to try adding coconut oil. I hear it's super good and smoothes out blood sugar even more than the nuts.

Posted by Bahiyyih at February 28, 2010 11:05 PM

Thanks for sharing, Bahiyyih! I love reading about food, it's so much fun! The curried cashews were a big hit in our house, as was the entire Ayyam-i-Ha package. We had a wonderful, joyful Ayyam-i-Ha this year and the package from your family was, by far, the highlight for us. It just felt so full of love and warmth. We love you guys!

Posted by: Katie B at March 4, 2010 11:45 PM