Friday, January 28

Seaweed Rice Salad


Today's recipe was inspired by a bit of seaweed.  I keep hearing how seaweed is full of fabulous nutrients and therefore decided to give it a try.  My first tip from the experience: WASH YOUR SEAWEED! It's preserved with A LOT of salt, so it's really important to wash away the salt before eating. I decided to incorporate some brown rice and spices with the seaweed, then progressed to making a salad out of it.  My new favorite dressing/sauce fit perfectly with this arrangement and I thought it might be the perfect chance to share it with you all, so I included that as well!

{Seaweed Rice Salad}

Ingredients:
~makes one bowl

1/2 cup Cooked Organic Brown Rice (I use Trader Joe's)
1/4 cup Organic Mushroom Broth (or any other GF/DF broth)
1/8 tsp Paprika
1/8 tsp Minced and Toasted Onion
1/4 tsp Minced Garlic
Sprinkle of Pink Sea Salt

1/2 cup Raw Mixed Sea Vegetables (I use Sea Tangle)
1 1/2 cup Mixed Fresh Organic Lettuce Greens
1 TBSP Raw Coconut Aminos Soy-Free Seasoning Sauce ( I use Coconut Secret; it's GF/DF)


To begin pour Brown Rice and Broth into a frying pan and simmer until the Rice has absorbed the Broth and has a thick consistency.  Add in the Spices and Sea Salt and stir, still simmering, for 20 seconds or so.  Take the pan off the heat.  In another bowl pour Sea Vegetables in with about 1 cup of water and swish about.  Drain and repeat until the salt has been removed from the Sea Vegetables.  Then add to the Rice in the pan and mix well.  Grab the bowl you are eating out of and fill it with your choice of Greens.  Top with the Rice Mixture. Drizzle with the Coconut Seasoning Sauce to finish, toss and enjoy!


{Linked To}

Wednesday, January 26

A Little Update


Hello all! I'm back! I just returned from a lovely road trip to Utah and Colorado.  Having never experienced these states before it was a time of new discoveries and adventure.  I had the company of my best friend and love, which made the the journey even better, because he was there to witness the majesty of the mountains and snow along with me!


As always I had to prepare for the trip with all sorts of quick go-to snacks and meals.  It's getting easier each time and I actually felt pretty prepared this trip.  I also made a fun discovery that got me rather excited while traveling.  Apparently, Whole Foods is popular in Salt Lake City, Utah and all over the state of Colorado! If you didn't already know....Whole Foods is like Disneyland to me.  I'm a bit obsessed... So needless to say it was a great stop for when I needed just about anything.  Thank you dear Whole Foods!


Unfortunately, while skiing in Utah I had a health problem arise that landed me in the hospital for a day.  An undiagnosed response/infection caused my body to...well, for lack of an adequate medical term, freak out.  Praise God, I had dear dear friends about me and kind doctors that tried to help.  I came away somewhat relieved of the pain, but with questions unanswered and symptoms undiagnosed.  Thankfully I am home now and have spent a few days recovering.  Today I woke feeling energized and rested, so I think I am definitely on the mend! I am choosing to hope that answers will come in time.

Happy Wednesday to you all!

Sunday, January 16

Vegan Raw Samoa Cookies

January, a month of beginnings and new resolutions.  By now many have already given up on those dreams and goals, allowing themselves to sink back into the well-worn trail of 2010.  It's easy to concoct beautiful visions of new and refreshing habits and lifestyles, but difficult to stay true to them as time passes.  Our daily life swirls around us, slowly wiping away the conviction, motivation and memory we had only weeks before.
Last January I took on a little dream of my own, which over time has built up this lovely Sweet and Salty Life of mine.  Creating this blog was the result of a few nudges, a bit of foodie-film inspiration and a deep desire to write about my culinary creations and experiences.  A year later, I am still here and loving every time I get to share a bit of my story. 
As a part of acknowledging my journey I just want to thank each and everyone of you that have encouraged me, sampled my tasty and perhaps not so tasty experiments, taken the time to read my thoughts, given feedback and most of all shown such a desire to love what has become my passion.  

So cheers to another year of culinary adventure and to all of you my dear friends!


To continue the adventure I bring you a girlscout-inspired treat, the Samoa Cookie! A delicious concoction, this recipe was a pleasant surprise thanks to my delightful, new food processor.  By far my favorite gift from my parents, I have had such fun playing with nuts, fruit, flour, etc. in my beautiful Cuisenart.  The cookie for today is completely Vegan with frosting that is both Vegan and Raw.  Could it be any better for you? 


{Vegan Samoa Cookie}

Ingredients:

Base
1/4 cup Raw Cashews
1/4 cup Raw Almonds
1 TBSP Raw Chia Seeds
1 cup Gluten-Free Oats
1 tsp Macca Powder
2 TBSP Raw Coconut Nectar (raw agave or honey might work as well...just haven't tried it yet!)
1 TBSP Raw Maple Syrup (again....your choice)

Frosting
3 TBSP Raw Coconut Oil
1-2 TBSP Raw Agave Nectar
2 1/1 tsp Raw Cocoa Powder
Dash of Cinnamon
Dash of Pink Sea Salt

Begin by processing the Nuts, Seeds and Oats together.  Add the Macca quickly after and continue to process.  Drizzle in the Coconut Nectar and Maple Syrup and pulse. Use a rubber spatula to scrape the sides and pulse again until the Nuts, Seeds and Oats stick together.  Scoop out and place in a pan lined with parchment paper.  Spread the base pressing it outward  with clean hands until the surface is even and it's about 1/4-1/2 inch thick.  Place the pan in the refrigerator for 30-45 minutes. 

While it's hardening, combine all the frosting ingredients in the processor and process until smooth and lightly warm.  Pull out the base and frost your cookie! Return the pan to the refrigerator (for longer preservation put in freezer) until frosting is hardened.  When ready, cut into bars and enjoy! They soften the longer they are out of the fridge or freezer, but you'll eat each so quick you probably won't even notice!

Good luck with your 2011 dreams, may they be just as sweet as this simply delicious treat.


{Linked to}

Sunday, January 2

A Farmers' Market Chopped Salad


A farmers' market inspired salad is what I bring you today.  Besides finding and scouring through cookbooks, strolling through farmers markets is my absolute favorite pastime.  I haven’t visited one in a couple months, so I was way past due for a good long meander through my local market.  Today was glorious.  The sun was shining and the air, though chilly, was fresh and post-rain clean.  I got my cash ready and mozied along the street stopping at various booths that grabbed my attention.  Organic and local produce was prevalent and I couldn’t get enough of breathing in the earthy smell and tasting the sun-ripened sweetness.  Now, if you’ve never understood the draw of local or organic, let me explain.  


Basically, the more local your produce is the longer it’s on the vine, branch, in the ground, etc.  This means it’s not harvested until it is perfectly ready to explode with ripe goodness.  The taste, appearance and texture of the produce will be at its prime. If it’s organic this means the produce received nothing of a chemical nature that could alter the fruit or hurt the consumer.  A nice benefit for those of us that tend to forget about washing the produce before inhaling…like me…is that all we have to worry about is dirt. 


Now compare this to the chain grocery stores’ chemically-induced, oversized, pre-picked, poison-covered produce and perhaps you’ll join me and start visiting the local farmers' market! 


Because of my little trip I was able to create one of my tasty and nutritious chopped salads for lunch! This simple salad is made up of the ingredients I found there with a little help from Trader Joe’s brown rice and black beans.  Salads are not meant to be calculated or exact like some people’s approach to baking, so feel free to reduce or increase the amounts of any ingredient I include. 


{Farmers' Market Chopped Salad}

Kale
Chard
English Cucumber
Fuerte Avocado
Heirloom Tomatoes
Cooked Brown Rice (cooled)
Cooked Black Beans (cooled and salted)

{Fresh Dressing}
~for 2 1/2 – 3 cups of salad

1 TBSP Bragg’s Organic Apple Cider Vinegar
1 TBSP Eden’s Organic Red Wine Vinegar
1 TBSP Raw Organic Blue Agave
Sprinkle of Pink Sea Salt

Wash and chop the lettuce creating one-inch strips both horizontally and vertically.  This will help your body better digest the fibrous salad!  Slice the Cucumber, Tomatoes and Avocado.  Combine these with the Brown Rice and Black Beans and toss with the lettuce.  Drizzle with Fresh Dressing and toss again.  For a creamier dressing, pour in the Fresh Dressing and then mash the Avocado in a separate bowl (instead of chopping), mix it with a sprinkle of Pink Sea Salt and toss throughout salad. 

Enjoy!


{Shared and linked up with some favorites of mine}
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