Black Rice and Adzuki Bean Salad

Black Rice and Adzuki Bean Salad
(Serves 10-12) – Vegan, Gluten-Free, Soy-Free, Can be prepared Raw
IMG_6272
I love learning about new foods and trying new ingredients. There are times when I’m just browsing through the aisles and I’ll grab an item that I’ve never tried before. I’ll read about it, learn about it, and then I’ll create a new recipe in my mind. Of course I’m always interested in the nutritional value as well.
I came across Black Rice (Chinese) in the store the other day. Originally I was looking for an ingredient to add into a salad, I considered Couscous or thought about making another pasta salad. Then I came across this black rice. I learned that Black rice is very nutritious. It’s a Rich source of Iron, Protein, Fiber, Antioxidants and Vitamin E. There are more antioxidants in this rice than berries. The flavor was incredible also. The rice on its own had a rich almost nutty flavor, very delicious. I cooked this rice and grilled all the veggies – you can grill an ear of corn then cut the kernels off the cob or use canned corn or frozen thawed corn.
Alternatively, this salad can be made all raw. Soak the rice overnight or for about 10-12 hours, drain then rinse and allow the rice to dry before adding the veggies raw.
It’s Memorial Day today – thank you for all the people who have died in service. This weekend is also a popular day for BBQ’s as a kick-off to the summer season. This recipe makes a nice side dish, main dish (hell my husband had some this morning with his breakfast, lol); it is also great as a potluck item to bring also. Enjoy!
Below are some links that include some nutritional facts about two main ingredients in this recipe that may not be too familiar. Use it as a starting point for your research.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Black_rice
http://www.lotusfoods.com/index.php/categories/rices/forbidden-rice
https://jarohoney.com/sprouted-adzuki-beans-raw/
http://healthyeating.sfgate.com/nutrition-information-regarding-adzuki-beans-1807.html

Raw Preparation Tips/Links – Black Rice and Adzuki Beans
https://jarohoney.com/sprouted-adzuki-beans-raw/
http://www.vegkitchen.com/recipes/raw-organic-lotus-forbidden-black-rice-recipe/

IMG_6266

Black Rice and Adzuki Bean Salad

  • Servings: (About 10-12) ~ Vegan, Gluten-Free, Soy-Free, Can be made Raw
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Credit: VeganRescue.com

Ingredients:
1 (15oz Can) Adzuki Beans
¼ Cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
¼ Cup Apple Cider Vinegar
3 Tsp Sugar
½ Hothouse Cucumber, chopped
1 Carrot, shredded
½ Pint Cherry Tomatoes, sliced in half
1 Cup Black Rice, dry
1 ¾ Cup Water
1 Tsp Salt + Pinch of Salt for Rice
1 Tsp Course Black Pepper
½ – 1 Avocado, chopped
½ Red Onion, diced
½ Red Pepper, diced
1 Can of Corn or 1 ½ – Cups Frozen, thawed
Juice of ½ Lemon
A handful of Parsley, chopped
¼ Tsp Cayenne
¼ Tsp Cumin

Directions:
-Rinse Rice under cool water. Combine Rice and Water with a pinch of Salt in a medium saucepan. Bring to boil over medium-high heat. Cover then reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes. Turn off heat and let stand for 5-10 minutes. Remove lid and fluff with fork and set aside until other ingredients are ready.
-Drain and Rinse Adzuki Beans. Combine in a bowl with Apple Cider Vinegar and Olive Oil.
-Optional: Grill Red Onion, Red Pepper and Cherry Tomatoes set aside to cool then chop.
-Combine and toss all ingredients together to combine. Top with additional Avocado before serving. Enjoy warm or cold!


Next Day 🙂

IMG_6279

Chive Pâté (Cashew and Sunflower Seed Dip/Spread)

Chive Pâté (Cashew and Sunflower Seed Dip/Spread)

(Makes about 2 Cups) – Vegan, Gluten-Free, Soy-Free, Almost Raw
IMG_5885
While I was in the process of creating a recipe the other day (Chive Sauce for Potato Cakes) there was a point during the recipe development that I needed to add a little more water since I was creating a sauce and all. Just before adding more water at that moment the consistency resembled Pâté to me, so I made a mental note at that moment that I wanted to remake the recipe as a Pâté. This dip is phenomenal on crackers, tortilla chips, pretzels, celery etc. Warning – this is addicting. 🙂  Enjoy!

Ingredients:
1 Cup Cashews, soaked
Juice of ½ Lemon
1 Tsp Sea Salt
1 Tsp Apple Cider Vinegar
3-4 Garlic Cloves, chopped
2 ½ Tbsp Nutritional Yeast
½ Cup Sunflower Seeds
(.75 oz) Chives, chopped (abt ½ cup packed chopped)
½ Cup Water

Directions:
-Soak cashews, I soaked for about 1 hr or overnight, then rinse and drain.
-Combine all ingredients in high-speed blender (I used my nutribullet). Refrigerate for a couple hours, if you can resist, to allow it to firm up. Serve and Enjoy!
IMG_5877

IMG_5882

Chive Pâté (Cashew and Sunflower Seed Dip/Spread)

  • Servings: Makes about 2 Cups~Vegan, Gluten-Free, Soy-Free, Almost Raw (Nutritional Yeast)
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Print

Credit: VeganRescue.com

Ingredients:
1 Cup Cashews, soaked
Juice of ½ Lemon
1 Tsp Sea Salt
1 Tsp Apple Cider Vinegar
3-4 Garlic Cloves, chopped
2 ½ Tbsp Nutritional Yeast
½ Cup Sunflower Seeds
(.75 oz) Chives, chopped (abt ½ cup packed chopped)
½ Cup Water

Directions:
-Soak cashews, I soaked for about 1 hr or overnight, then rinse and drain.
-Combine all ingredients in high-speed blender (I used my nutribullet). Refrigerate for a couple hours, if you can resist, to allow it to firm up. Serve and Enjoy!

Reflections in a cup of Juice!

A toast to Reflections (A-Z Blog Challenge) and bloggers – Happy Juicing
(Serves 1) – Vegan, Raw, Gluten-Free

IMG_4816
Ingredients:
2-3 Stalks Kale, stemmed removed
2 Carrots
½ Cucumber,
1-inch piece Ginger, peeled
½ Lemon
1 Granny Smith Apple
-Juice the above ingredients and enjoy! – Remember Organic is always best.

Good Morning my beautiful juice! I love juicing – feels revitalizing in the morning. What a great breakfast of Antioxidants, Nutrients and Phytonutrients.
I wanted to take a moment to touch on a couple things. First, I want to say thank you again to my fellow bloggers out there for the follow(s) and support, the comments, the likes and anyone who has perused my blog or tried any of my recipes too. It truly means a lot to me. I enjoy reading everyone else’s blogs and posts also. The amount of Vegans that are out there still amazes me sometimes and even the non-vegans too – just the amount of people out there that are looking for healthier alternatives…I think that is fantastic. I believe in my heart that one can heal through food, aside from the animal cruelty factor and ethical reasons, this world is really changing. We’re a long way from the vittles our parents and grandparents grew up eating. The food quality has changed over the years so drastically. So take care of yourselves out there.

Reflections:
Finally, I’d like to talk about the A-Z Blog Challenge that I participated in April 2015. It was a fun challenge for me to come up with a new recipe for each letter. I had a ball participating and enjoyed every minute. Posting everyday alone was challenge in itself, but I’m so glad I got it accomplished. 🙂  I’m newer to blogging so this challenge pushed me that much more to post daily and to get creative and even better to learn about blogging and meeting new people! I have enjoyed reading so many blogs – stories, posts, recipes and learning so much.
A-to-Z+Reflection+[2015]+-+Lg

Oatmeal Breakfast Smoothie

Oatmeal Breakfast Smoothie
(Serves 1) – Vegan, Gluten-Free, can be Raw
OatmealSmoothie(1)
O is for Oatmeal. Oatmeal is so versatile and healthy for you. It’s been known to lower cholesterol, its heart healthy, great for diabetics (stabilizes blood sugar) and reduces high blood pressure. It’s filling too, this smoothie easily tide me over until lunch. Oatmeal is great for you and my mom makes the best – I’ll have to blog about her recipe one of these days. Oatmeal is flexible too, you can make Oatmeal (porridge), Oatmeal Cookies, Oatmeal Bars, Granola or add it to a smoothie. This smoothie is a simple feel good breakfast recipe. Maca powder has been known to not only put you in a good mood, but to get you ‘in the mood’ also. This superfood has been known to boost the libido, helps with fatigue, it’s a stress reducer among others benefits. If not in this smoothie, I’ll mix maca straight in a bowl of oatmeal or other foods too. If the Oatmeal and Maca weren’t extraordinary enough, this also has Turmeric, Almond Butter, Coconut Water and Chia seeds. Chia seeds are packed with an excellent vegan source of Omega 3’s, as well as, protein, antioxidants and fiber. You can prepare it the night before and refrigerate so all you have to do in the morning is blend it up. And if you prepare it that morning, it takes no more than 5 minutes. Serves 1 – but can easily be doubled or tripled for a family breakfast on the go.

Ingredients:

¼ Cup Rolled Oats –GF (I use Bob’s Red Mill) or raw oat groats (raw)
1 Tbsp Chia Seeds
1 Tsp to 1 Tbsp Raw Agave Nectar (to taste)
1 Tsp Maca Powder
¼ Tsp Turmeric
¼ Tsp Cinnamon
1 Tbsp Maple Almond Butter (I use Justin’s)
½ Cup Almond Milk
¼ Cup Coconut Water
½ Cup Water

Blend together and Enjoy! – You can substitute for all coconut water if you prefer.

O

Raw Lemon Tart

Raw Lemon Tart
(Serves 4-6 depending on pan size) – Raw, Vegan, Gluten-Free, Soy-Free
IMG_4651
Ingredients:
Lemon
Chia Cream:
1 Cup Cashews, soaked
½ Cup Macadamia Nuts, soaked
1 Cup Water
2 Tbsp Blue Agave Nectar
Juice of 1 Lemon
3 Tbsp Chia Seeds
¼ Tsp Turmeric, optional for color

-Soak nuts for at least 3 hours. Rinse and drain. –Blend nuts, water and agave in high-speed blender for 3 minutes until creamy and smooth. Remove then place in bowl – stir in Lemon, cover and refrigerate for several hours or overnight until mixture sets.

Lemon Crust:
1 Cup Brazil Nuts (about 5.5 oz)
½ Cup Macadamia Nuts (about 2.5oz)
1 Tbsp raw Blue Agave Nectar
Zest from 1 Lemon
1/3 Cup Finely shredded coconut, optional
IMG_4636
-Blend nuts in high-speed blender separately. –Brazil nuts first, remove and set aside. Then Macadamia nuts remove and set aside. In a bowl, combine nuts with remaining ingredients.

Directions:

-Press crust into bottom of mini spring form pans. Stir in Chia seeds & Tumeric to Lemon Cream mixture. Then top crust with Lemon Chia Cream and freeze for about 45 minutes until set. Remove from pan and serve immediately.
IMG_4642

L

IMG_4656

Kiwi Parfait

Kiwi Parfait – Raw
(Serves 4) – Vegan, Raw, Gluten-Free
IMG_4616

K for Kiwi! Kiwis are loaded with Vitamin C as well as antioxidants, dietary fiber and potassium. I love when ‘mistakes’ happen in the kitchen and creates something new and better! Originally when I created this recipe, I envisioned a layer of coconut milk with chia seeds, however, the coconut milk coupled with the chia seeds didn’t set as I intended – it was very loose. The cashew/macadamia cream goes a long way, it turned out that I didn’t really need the additional cream after all. – I still made the coconut whipped cream as a topping, you can easily omit. So with regards to the ‘mistake’ there’s no way I was to get rid of the coconut milk or the precious vanilla beans I used…so I made ice cream! Enjoy – I’ll be sharing my coconut ice cream shortly. 🙂
IMG_4617
Ingredients:
6-8 Kiwi, chopped
1 Cup Cashews, soaked
½ Cup Macadamia Nuts, soaked
1 Cup Water
½ Vanilla Bean, scraped
3 Tbsp Blue Agave Nectar, divided
1 Can ( 13.5 oz) Coconut Milk Whipped Cream, optional (omit for raw)
Raw Walnuts, optional

Directions:
-Soak nuts for at least 3 hours. Rinse and Drain.
-Blend nuts, water and 2 Tbsp Agave in high-speed blender for about 3 minutes until creamy and smooth. Remove then place in bowl, cover and refrigerate overnight.
IMG_4581
-Split the Vanilla bean open and scrap the pod to remove the seeds.
IMG_4574
[At this point to keep the recipe raw – just add the vanilla bean to the cashew ‘yogurt’] or add coconut whipped cream to top.

Easy Coconut Whipped Cream:
-Refrigerate can of Coconut milk overnight. Remove from refrigerator – open can: cream should have separated from coconut water.
IMG_4604
-Remove the cream and reserve the water/liquid for smoothie or other preparation.
IMG_4605
-Add the cream to a bowl with vanilla beans and 1 Tbsp Agave then whip with hand mixer.
IMG_4608

Coconut Whipped Cream!

IMG_4613

-Begin to layer parfait: Kiwi, Cashew/Macadamia cream, Walnuts-optional. (I use 1 to 2 kiwis per parfait. You can top with coconut cream, if using.

K

Juicing – Apple, Lemon, Cucumber Cleanse

Juicing – Apple, Lemon, Cucumber Cleanse
(Serves 1) – Vegan, Raw, Gluten-Free
IMG_4558

Juicing…what an invigorating and refreshing way to start your day! Two quick basics to keep in mind are organic is always best and juice on an empty stomach – this is the reason why most people juice first thing in the morning. Juicing is a great meal replacement (like breakfast) and if you’re hungry in an hour or two grab some nuts to snack on or another healthy snack. Juicing gives your body a shot of Vitamins & Nutrients, Phytonutrients, Antioxidants, Chlorophyll and can balance your pH. Just take a moment to stop and think of how many fruits, vegetables and herbs there are out there, now think about how many variations you can come up with…the possibilities are endless 🙂 . This quick three ingredient recipe is cleansing and delicious, not to mention simple. Drink up – Enjoy!

IMG_4551

J

Iceberg Wedge Salad with Creamy Italian Dressing – Vegan

Iceberg Wedge Salad with creamy Italian Dressing
(Serves 4 – 1 Head Lettuce) Vegan, Gluten-Free
IMG_4534

Iceberg lettuce is regularly accused of being boring and bland. Usually hidden in a burrito or wrap, maybe chopped in a salad or placed on top of a taco. But Iceberg has great potential, it can be luxurious and classy. If you’re looking to change your seemingly boring salad, next time try a wedge salad! I love this recipe because it is very simple but looks fancy. Partnered with a creamy classic. This Italian dressing is magnificent. It’s pretty bold to say something is the ‘best’ but this salad dressing is supreme! Enjoy!

IMG_4529
Ingredients:
Iceberg Lettuce
Cherry Tomatoes, quartered
Red Onion, sliced thin
Walnuts, chopped
Cucumber, diced
Capers
Chives
Coconut Bacon, optional (Find Recipe Here)

Directions:
-Remove outer layer of Iceberg lettuce and cut in half. Cut out core of lettuce and then cut in half.
-Rinse under cool water and drain on a paper towel until ready to serve.
-Add toppings and dress salad. That’s it!

Creamy Italian Dressing – Vegan
(Makes 2 Cups) – Vegan / Gluten-Free
IMG_4524
Ingredients:
1 Avocado, pitted
½ Cup Vegenaise
2 Tbsp Nutritional Yeast
5 Basil Leaves, chopped roughly
2 Tbsp Apple Cider Vinegar
¼ Cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Juice of ½ Lemon
2 Tsp Dijon Mustard
2 Tbsp Raw Blue Agave Nectar
½ Tsp course Black Pepper
½ Tsp Sea Salt
½ Tsp dried Oregano
½ Tsp Italian Seasoning
½ Tsp Smoked Paprika
2 Garlic Cloves, minced

Directions:
Combine all ingredients in food processor until creamy. Refrigerate any unused portion. Enjoy!

Note: Raw Option for this recipe – omit Vegenaise and replace with another Avocado.

I

Gazpacho!

Chilled Gazpacho with Watercress
(Makes about 12 Cups) – Vegan, Gluten-Free, Raw
IMG_4423

I’m celebrating “G” today with Gazpacho a tomato based cold soup. This version is delicious, light and airy. Although it doesn’t have that bright ‘red’ color as some which could be because I do not use tomato juice which is commonly added. I wanted as close to nature and raw as possible with this recipe. It’s packed with lots of flavor and you can taste the freshness. Enjoy!

Ingredients:
1 Red Pepper, seeded/chopped
1 Green Pepper, seeded/chopped
1 Hothouse Cucumber, chopped
½ Red Onion, chopped
1 Celery Rib, chopped
½ Serrano Pepper, seeded/chopped
5 Basil Leaves, chiffonade
5 Tomatoes, chopped (I use Hot House or Vine Ripened)
3-4 Garlic Cloves, chopped
2 Tbsp Vinegar
Juice of 1 Lime
½ Tsp Sea Salt
½ Tsp course ground Pepper
¼ Tsp Cumin
1 Tbsp Blue Agave Nectar
1 Cup Watercress
¼ Cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Avocado for garnish, optional

IMG_4352

Directions:
-Combine all ingredients in food processor, blender or high powered blender (Vitamix, Ninja or Nutribullet) depending on consistency you prefer. I typically blend the first 9 ingredients first to combine then blend in the remaining. Chill for a couple hours then enjoy!

G

E-Boost (Energy) Smoothie

E-Boost (Energy) Smoothie
(Serves 2) – Vegan, Raw
IMG_4292

“E” is for Energy! How much do we need a little extra energy in our lives? All the ingredients in this energy packed smoothie have similar qualities…Rich in Antioxidants, Vitamin C and Energy packed!
Pineapple (1 Cup) contains 131% Vitamin C. Pineapples are an excellent source of Vitamin C, Vitamin B-6, Magnesium, Manganese, Thiamin. Known for their anti-inflammatory benefits too and Dietary Fiber to aid in digestion. They are a rich source of antioxidants, which aid in preventing/repairing cell damage.
Mango (1) Great source of Beta Carotene, antioxidants and great for skin and hair.
Blueberries (1 Cup) also provides 24% Vitamin C 36% Vitamin K. Rich source of Antioxidants.
Spinach (1 Cup) Packed with Iron. Great source of Calcium, Vitamins, Zinc – think of Popeye’s strength and how he’d jump up in the air with great strength after a can. Kale is a great substitute too.
Peaches (1) – Vitamins A, C, K & E. Antioxidants – Vitamin C.
Cranberry Juice – (1 Cup) – Packed with energy and protein. Minerals like calcium, zinc, magnesium, Vitamin B-6, Riboflavin. Coconut Water is great here too!

Also, for smoothies or a great snack are: Bananas which contain a lot of Potassium. They are great if you’re ever looking for an energy boost or pick me up. Nuts like Almonds or Apples too. Soak your Nuts for smoothies for easier digestion.

Smoothie Add-ins: Cinnamon, Hemp Seeds, Chia Seeds, Maca Powder, Cocoa Powder, Matcha, Flax Seeds/Meal.

Avocado, Berries, Bananas, and Papayas are fantastic for energy and excellent for hair/skin too. Oranges and Grapefruits – Vitamin C, what can I say…Vitamin C. If you have a cold, feeling ill, fatigued – Vitamin C should surely give you a boost. Anything that is cancer fighting, rich in antioxidants, I’m down for. Cold medicines…Supplements…Coffee, why not give fruits and veggies a try.

IMG_4279

E

E includes Easter Dinner. I wanted to edit my “E” section to include Easter Dinner. Whether Easter to you means  Resurrection Day or the Easter Bunny and “Plastic” Easter Egg hunts, it is typically a time where people, family and friends come together. That togetherness is always important and just as stated in my ‘about’ our gatherings always include food! This year we spent time at my brother’s and enjoyed a fantastic Easter dinner – they had their selections and I brought along our vegan items, which are always enjoyed by everyone. I made my coveted V-Loaf and Bean Salad along with some lovely Hasselback Potatoes, Broccoli Slaw, Beets/Swiss Chard and for dessert my carrotcake cake balls.

Happy Easter

This is us!

IMG_4214