Juice Cleanse

As I walked through the multiple tasting booths in William Sonoma, I approached a salted caramel station. The owner handed me samples, describing the “6 month aged balsamic vinaigrette and Himalayan sea salt” he used in the candies. Very impressive. I expressed how lucky he must be to make and eat such delicious caramels. He replied, “Yes but the worst part is that I can’t eat any of it. I’m on a juice cleanse.” A juice cleanse? Wow. Now THAT was impressive. I’ve always wanted to do one but had no idea where to start, what to juice, how to stay alive, ect. My brother recently got me a juicer for Christmas so might as well start there. The more I talked to the man at the carmel booth, the more motivated I became to try this cleanse.

Not going to lie, it was hard.

The first day I drank a glass of juice and a glass of lemon water in the morning, a light meal of quinoa and veggies in the afternoon, and a savory dinner juice in the evening. Being an academic student and active athlete, I realized the combo of not receiving enough calories and the stress of school did not mix well and I had to stop the cleanse. I tried again the following weekend, and felt much more relaxed. I definitely recommend trying it for two days. I felt so awake and light; my skin cleared up and I was a much more relaxed during the day.

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•{Cantaloupe Mint Pear Juice }•
– 1/2 Cantaloupe, quartered and peel removed
– 2 medium pears, quartered
– (roughly) 1/2 cup mint, stems removed

Throw into a juicer and enjoy!

Soy Joy

I recently came upon a recipe on making homemade soy milk. As I have turned to a “eating unprocessed foods” diet, this was perfect! All you need are dry soybeans and water. And it goes a lil somethin’ like this…

Measure out one cup of dried soybeans and 5 cups of water. Find yourself a nice big jar like this one and let the beans soak overnight in the water.

Let it pour, let it pour, let it pour…

It should look like this:

After you soak those beanies, strain the water out in a colander and separate the soybeans in half. Put one half in a blender/food processor along with 2 cups of HOT water. Blend those babies until smooth and pour into a large cooking pot. Repeat with the other half. Bring the purée to a boil. You should see foam atop the milky substance–

After simmering for 8 minutes, line a large colander with a moistened pressing cloth/sack and place the colander in the mouth of a clean pot. Transfer the soybean purée into the pressing cloth/sack and twist the cloth closed. Press the cloth sack with a potato masher. Show em’ who’s boss. When you have extracted as much as you can, open the cloth and stir the remaining purée briefly. Add 1 1/2 cups of hot water into the cloth and repeat the pressing.

Enjoy your milk! Warning: this will taste EXTREMELY different from the store bought kind. I recommend sweetening it with raw honey or organic agave nectar. Your end results should look like the image above. OH and the one below.

That my friend is called “okara,” the soybean pulp from soy milk. Don’t discard it! It can be used in cooking and is delicious. It spoils quickly though, so keep it in the refrigerator and use it within 1 to 2 days of making your soymilk.

Don’t turn into a pumpkin!

The title says it all. I’m pretty sure everyone goes into hibernation mode during the holidays. Who can say no to the salted carmel mochas or 7-layer bars? I know I can’t. However, as the new year approaches us, let’s make a change before 2013. I pledge to exercise more and resist those caloric treats that taunt me in candy stores. Hike after a heavy rainstorm, take a bikram yoga class when it’s cold, work on your core strength in the mornings; there’s so much you can do to stay in shape. And eating healthy helps you maintain that fabulous bod. Of course, don’t deprive yourself! Eat that piece of pie if you need to!

The Healthiest Cookies

Hey Everyone! Sorry I haven’t posted anything in a week; finals and studying took up all my time. But now it is summer and I am excited to share with you the recipe for the healthiest cookies you’ll ever eat. Only 66 calories each, these spongy, nutritional treats are perfect if you need a little sweet pick-me-up.

Banana Oatmeal Cookies

Canola Oil Spray

3/4 cup wheat flour

1/4 tsp. salt

1/4 tsp. baking soda

1/2 tsp. ground cinanmon

1/4 tsp. ground allspice

1 cup quick-cooking oats

1/3 cup raisins

1/4 cup chopped walnuts

1 large egg white

4-5 tbsp. sweetened applesauce

1/2 cup packed dark brown sugar

2 small bananas, one cut into 1-inch pieces, the other puréed

1 tsp. vanilla extract

Directions

1. Set baking racks in top and lower thirds of the oven. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Coat 2 baking pans or cookie sheets with oil spray.

2. Whisk together flour, salt, baking soda, cinnamon and allspice in a mixing bowl. Mix in oats, raisins and nuts.

3. With a blender on medium speed, mix egg white, applesauce and sugar until smooth. Blend in pureéd and cut banana and vanilla until mixture is smooth. Pour banana mixture into bowl with dry ingredients, mixing with spatula until well combined. Batter will be fairly stiff.

4. Drop batter by walnut-size spoonfuls onto prepared baking sheets, spacing cookies at least 2 inches apart. Flatten them slightly with the back of a wet spoon, wetting spoon frequently between cookies, to make 2-inch cookies.

5. Bake 10 minutes, until cookies are golden brown and almost firm in the center when pressed with a finger. Transfer cookies to a baking rack and cool. Stored in airtight container, these cookies keep up to 1 week.

Enjoy!