Friday, January 27, 2012

recipe follow-ups and a few whole food goodies worth mentioning

Thanks for all your kindness, my friends. I'm so glad you guys are here. xo

I'm doing a little catch up today with Daniele's question on how I make focaccia, as well as Lisa (welcome to you and all new readers!) wanting to know a little more about that salad I had for lunch the other day.

Before I get to those, I want to share a few interesting and exciting things that have made me happy these past few weeks.

Last Thursday, my friend Monique and I went to a lecture given by local Robyn Openshaw of  Green Smoothie Girl fame. I've greatly benefited and now implement her 12 Steps to Whole Foods plan/book and website and I also read her blog faithfully. However, I had yet to listen to her speak. I'm really glad I went. Although much of what she spoke was not new to me, I left there more committed and energized than ever about this path I'm on.

Before she began speaking, I was so pleased to be able to purchase two of the newest titles in her cookbook series. These two volumes are some of her reader's favorite healthy recipes. By healthy, I mean, "55% raw, 85% vegan, and 90% gluten free." I love these types of tried and true, real life people kinds of cookbooks, don't you?

To give you a little more of an idea, Volume 1 (each book 162 pages) contains: Breads, Muffins, Pancakes, Cereals, Milks & Creams, "Cheeses", Salsas, Sauces, Relishes, Cookies, Candy, Bars and Balls, Chips & Crackers, Dips & Spreads, Munchies, Smoothies, Other Drinks.

Volume 2: Main Dishes, Side Dishes, Chili, Soups, Stews, Sandwiches, Mixed Green Salads, Fruit & Veggie Salads, Pasta, Grain, & Legume Salads, Dressings, Pies, Cakes, Frostings, Frozen Treats, Puddings and Custard, Other Desserts.

You know I've been trying to get more greens into my system. So many benefits that I'm sure you're all aware of. Alkalizing and cleansing to the system. Amazing source of enzymes, vitamins, minerals, and fiber. etc, etc. Besides drinking a blender full of green smoothie most days, I've tried a few powdered greens mixed with water (sometimes in addition to or taking the place of) over the last couple of years. These have been helpful, especially, when I've run out of greens, when I'm too lazy to make a one, when it's cold and a smoothies aren't that appealing, or when traveling.

I'll be honest. These powdered green mixes taste like horse water. You either gag or need to buck up big time to gulp all this lovely nutrition down.

Until now!

I decided give Ormus Greens a try this week. I'm convinced that I'll stick with this powder. Actually pretty pleasant and palatable with a little hint of peppermint and a titch of sweet from the stevia. Not cheap, but one 1 pound package with two teaspoons a day will last quite a long time. Go here to find out more.

(Any one using this product? I'd love to know your experience or thoughts.)

Get this. Earlier this week, I came downstairs at 1:30 am and found Keith (after working, exhausted until after 10:30) sitting at the computer. He was there for hours reading all about the China Study and all the science behind everything he's heard from me.

I think he's catching on, intrigued with it all. This is beyond cool.

I've wanted to watch the documentary Forks Over Knives for a while now. I found it at Barnes and Noble this week and felt it was worth buying, as I knew I'd want to share it with others. And it was the perfect time as far as Keith is concerned. (If you live near me, I'd love to lend it, or you can get it off Netflix.)

Let me just tell you, you MUST see this film if you care about your health.  All the science, in an engaging, easy to understand format behind the whole foods- plant based diet hoopla. Documenting real people whose diabetes, heart disease,  high cholesterol, obesity, and even cancer have been reversed through following this lifestyle. So interesting and so well done that Eliza and even Isaac (and my Wisconsin sister Sara, too) enjoyed it with me. (They are on the bandwagon!)

Anyone seen this? Thoughts?

Okay, now on to those recipes.

I've used this versatile bread stick dough for years and years. I discovered that it made excellent fococcia. I tend to make this more often in the summer- so good with our garden tomatoes and fresh herbs- but once in a while, it's sure nice to have this to make a pasta dinner or a soup night extra special.

Quick Bread Sticks or Focaccia Dough

1 T. yeast
1 1/2 cup warm water
1 T. honey
1 t. salt
3-4 1/2 cups flour

In a mixing bowl, mix yeast with warm water. Add salt and blend. Add flour, gradually blending until dough pulls away from sides of bowl. Divide dough into twelve balls, roll into "snakes", and place on greased cookie sheets. Brush with olive oil or butter and sprinkle with seasonings (garlic powder, paprika, parsley) and allow to rise 10-15 minutes, if desired, but not necessary. Bake at 400 degrees for 15 to 20 minutes or until golden.


Use the Quick Bread Stick Dough and instead of dividing it, spread out on a small greased cookie sheet, pizza pan, or onto a sheet of parchment dusted with cornmeal (which I then transfer with a pizza peel to a hot baking stone). Let it rise for about 15 minutes and then push little holes or "dimples" into the dough. I like to chop up some fresh rosemary and garlic and put it in a little bowl of olive oil, then spread this all over top of the dough. Next,  I place thinly sliced slivers of red onion and thinly sliced tomatoes on top, sprinkling over with a few tablespoons of grated Parmesan cheese and a bit of kosher salt and black pepper. You may let it rise for another 15 minutes (or not) and bake at 400 for 20 minutes until golden. 

A Very Spontaneous, "Whatever Sounds Good and I Have In The Fridge" Kind of Salad

~ crisp green leaf lettuce, washed and torn into bite sized pieces
~raw broccoli florets
~chopped yellow sweet bell pepper
~canned pineapple tidbits
~sliced almonds sprinkled on top
~a drizzle of yummy to make it complete

Poppy Seed Dressing

3 T. honey
1 1/2 T. poppy seed
1 t. dry mustard
1 t. sea salt
1 T. grated onion or juice
1/3 cup rice vinegar
3/4 cup olive oil

Combine everything except poppy seeds in mason jar shake together. (I like to use my handy immersion blender for dressings.) Stir in the poppy seeds.


  1. Thank you, thank you!! I've also been wanting to watch that movie, will definitely check it out.

  2. Another great documentary you might be interested in is called Fat, Sick, and Nearly Dead. My husband and I watched it back to back with Forks Over Knives one weekend, and promptly began a juice fast. Felt so much better. :)

  3. Love both recipes - definetly diet based in whole foods and veggies is the way to go - I am amazed that my kids haven't been sick this season almost - knock on wood! Good Keith is getting more interested in your health pursuits! Simpler, green and less processed is the way to go for me.

  4. We just got a Vitamix and have been able to get more greens that way. The Green Smoothies Diet book is on our wishlist for sure. We enjoyed "Forks over Knives" and loved "Food Matters" (which I actually got a copy of after seeing it on Netflix). My husband lags a little in these departments but is at least a little curious about taking some spirulina. :) Bon chance to us all!!

  5. i have not watched forks over knives but have a pretty good idea on what it promotes ;) I did read the China study - it was pretty convincing. My family still loves their meat - but I do lots of meatless meals too. that bread looks amazing :) have a good weekend!