After every orthodontist appointment I had growing up, I would get a gift certificate to the McDonalds two doors down for a McFlurry. But what was my preferred post-dental treat of choice? Carrot juice. Yep, carrot juice from the crunchy, kitschy vegetarian restaurant next door.
I absolutely love carrot juice and it still feels like a special treat to me. But juice can be expensive to buy, and I don’t really want to invest in a DIY juicer (I have neither the patience to clean it, nor the space to store it).
Then the other day, when my carrot juice craving struck, Eric suggested I just make it in the blender. Brilliant! This juice uses a nut-milk style method and is totally genius. Not only does it allow me to have fresh juice whenever I want, but I can customize the flavors. To this batch I added a hunk of ginger and a dash of cardamom. Holy of holies was this delicious. Smooth and creamy and sweet and spicy. And it only cost $0.89 to make.
Carrot juice for the win!
Love and Weird Hippy Treats,
P.S. Wondering what to do with the leftover pulp? Stay tuned!
PubMed is my new favorite website. Since my lovely friendKaitlin was diagnosed with ALS, I have been spending a lot of time browsing through the National Library of Medicine, reading every peer-reviewed article I can find about non-drug based interventions to autoimmune disorders.
What I see echoed again and again through the pages of these articles is this: food is medicine. Whole plant foods have an incredible power to heal the body. Of course, there is no known cure for ALS. But there is a wealth of information available about cellular similarities among people with autoimmune diseases and food-based therapies that may offer meaningful interventions.
Turmeric is one of these seemingly magical, medicinal foods. It has a wonderful ability to help neutralize free radicals- those pesky extra electrons floating around which create a cascade of volatility in your body. Antioxidants, like those found in turmeric, stop oxidative stress in it’s tracks by grabbing those extra electrons. And if you eat turmeric with a dash of black pepper, it increases the bioavailability of the available nutrients, magnifying it’s impact.
As enlightening as these research articles may be, they don’t come with recipes. In reading about the health benefits of turmeric for all people, and especially those with autoimmune disorders, I wanted to come up with a delicious antioxidant power latte. This latte not only uses turmeric in it’s most bioavailable form, but it also takes advantage of the antioxidant powerhouse, the goji berry, which contains high concentrations of melatonin– a powerful antioxidant for the brain (especially wonderful for those with ALS).
This latte is medicinal and delicious. It uses a combination of medicinal herbs and whole plant foods to offer a yummy, antioxidant boost to your daily diet.
I love the clean slate feeling of a fresh year. I love the opportunity to reflect on all the wonderful things that happened the year before and wonder, with anticipation, what new friends and new adventures the new year will bring.
And I love new years resolutions. I first became vegan because of a new years resolution. I was doing a different challenge every month for a year, and my friend Julie asked if I’d like to go vegan with her for a month. It sounded fun, so I figured I’d give it a try. And that was the starting point of this beautiful adventure.
Many people use new years resolutions to set unrealistic goals and then self flagellate when they don’t achieve them. I really see no point in this. You have this blank page of a year- why muddy it with your own self loathing? If you want to set a new years resolution at all, think about something you are curious about. What would it look like to start exploring it? What would be the first step? Start there and see where the journey takes you.
This Avocado Shake is something I’d forgotten about until recently. I was flipping through images from early drafts of my cookbook (another new years resolution project). This shake didn’t end up making the final cut, but it’s the perfect type of new years recipe: healthy, fast, easy.
It may sound strange, but I promise you it isn’t. It’s actually a very common Brazilian recipe. Brazilians blend avocados with milk and sugar; I blend them with coconut milk and a little agave or coconut nectar. This is a great recipe to make the morning after a long, indulgent night. Avocados make the shake thick and creamy, while adding lots of fiber, vitamin k and vitamin e. Coconut adds lots of medium chain triglycerides and a tropical flavor.
It’s a perfect recipe, no matter what diet you’re on. Though it is an especially great recipe for my loved ones who are managing their neurological diseases through diets rich in veggies and coconut!
This makes quite a thick shake. But the beauty of the recipe is that you can adjust any ingredient to suit your preferences. If you like it thinner, add more coconut milk. If you like it sweeter, add some ripe banana, one medjool date, or a little extra coconut nectar. If you want to add some extra veggies, through in a handful of spinach- it will yield a bright green color. Enjoy!
1 ripe avocado, pitted
1 1/2 cups coconut milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
handful of ice
1/2 tablespoon agave, coconut nectar, or maple syrup (optional)
Blend all ingredients until totally smooth.
For a paleo diet: use coconut nectar.
For a whole foods plant based diet: replace the liquid sweetener with a medjool date or 1/2 ripe banana.
For a raw foods diet: use the meat and water from one young coconut.
A few weekends ago, Eric and I went to Governor’s Island for a Unicycle Festival. We discovered the festival around 11:48am on a Saturday, and the festival began at 1pm. Now, usually I am a snob about jarred peppers. But we had some on hand, and I wanted to quickly whip up a picnic lunch so we could get on our way. I threw everything in the blender, grabbed some bread and a few cut up veggies, and we were on our way.
The Unicycle Festival turned out to be disappointingly tiny, but the dip was delicious! And given how ludicrously simple it was to make, I have since been persuaded to change my snobbish ways.
This makes a delicious accompaniment to the Chesapeake Cakes, but it’s also a fantastic picnic or party dip.
I just don’t understand how people survived without air conditioning. I really don’t. Our little window unit struggles to keep our tiny NYC apartment cool enough to be tolerable. And it is definitely not strong enough to combat the added heat of the stove.
My mission this summer has been to create meals that require absolutely no added heat. No stove, no oven, not even a toaster oven. I want food that is cool and hydrating. That means we’ve been eating lots of smoothies, hummus, tapenades, and ice cream.
Raw food cuisine is also perfect for this kind of weather. Personally, raw food as a dogma is not my thing. It’s simply not true that raw fruits and vegetables are better than cooked fruits and vegetables. We need both. But I really appreciate raw foods innovative and creative approach to ingredients, and I am grateful for the source of inspiration!
This sushi recipe is totally raw. The rice isn’t rice- it’s a mixture of white vegetables, almonds, ume vinegar, agave nectar, and fresh ginger. It’s surprisingly delicious! Of course, the fillings can be whatever you like. I love avocado and cucumber. You could throw in some smoked tofu, sundried tomatoes, julienned beets. Really, anything you want or anything you have on hand.
This recipe is super flexible, allergy friendly, whole foods based, and gluten-free! I hope it helps keep you cool during these sweltering summer days.
6 cups white vegetables (daikon, cauliflower, jicama, white carrot)
1/2 cup ground almonds
1 tablespoon ume vinegar or lemon juice
2 teaspoons agave of other liquid sweetener
1 inch ginger, minced
10 sheets toasted nori
1 avocado, sliced
1 carrot, jullienned
1 bunch scallions, cut into 3 inch pieces
1 cucumber, julienned
In a food processor, pulse white vegetables until they break down into pieces the size or rice.
Pulse the almond flour, vinegar, agave, and ginger into the white vegetable rice until eventy distributed.
Transfer the vegetable mixture to a clean dish towel or fine mesh cheese cloth. Squeeze some of the liquid out of the rice. Transfer to a bowl and set aside.
Lay a piece of toasted nori with the shiny side facing down on a sushi mat or piece of cling film.
Press 1/2-3/4 cup vegetable rice onto the sheet of nori. The vegetables should be pressed firmly into the nori, so that they stick together. It should be an even layer, about 1/4-1/2 inch thick, which covers about 3/4 of the sheet of nori. Leave 1/4 of the nori untouched.
Lay slices of your vegetables parallel to the edge of the nori in a single line. Be sure not to overstuff!
You are ready to wrap the sushi. Brush a bit of warm water on the exposed 1/4 of the nori sheet. This will allow it to adhere to the roll.
Using your sushi mat or cling film, begin to roll the sushi in a tight, even log. Be sure to press along the way. Once you reach the end of the nori, press the damp edge into the log to seal it. Give the whole sushi a firm squeeze to compress the vegetables together.
Using a serated knife, cut the sushi into bite sized pieces. Serve with soy sauce.
For a nut allergy, replace the almonds with ground sunflower seeds.
We have arrived at the final chapter! This one features all the staples that will assist you throughout the other chapters. Of course you can buy pizza dough from a store, and commercially made vegan sour creams and nut milks, but it’s so easy and fun to make them yourself. You’ll receive no judgement on my end, whatever you decide to do. But this chapter is for the DIY crowd who wants to experiment fully in the kitchen. This chapter features:
Thank you so very much for reading through these pages. I have poured my heart and soul into these recipes, and it means the world to me that you’re looking at them! If you have any feedback, questions, comments, or concerns, always feel free to reach out to me at email@example.com. I’d love to hear what you think!
It’s been a whirlwind few weeks, so The Inclusive Vegan is taking a 2 week summer break. See you back here soon, with a whole new batch of plant based recipes that everyone can enjoy, together.
The first time I was in Alaska, I discovered the art of keeping a well stocked pantry. I was visiting my dear friend Carolyn whose pantry was brimming over with wild blueberry jam, rosehip jelly, and pickled everything.
In Alaska, food that is shipped from the mainland is expensive, so you learn to make do with what you can grow or forage. It all starts with the edibles you can get your hands on. And Carolyn very graciously took it upon herself to teach me all her pantry magic tricks.
We went on incredible hikes through Alaskan rain forest, and collected rosehips and other goodies. We plundered her garden for beets, carrots, and cucumbers. And when the raw materials had been collected, we got to canning.
This chapter is dedicated to Carolyn and includes five of my favorite pickle recipes, along with quick and easy jams, nut butters, and sauces. It features:
I have to be honest, I’m not usually the biggest fan of sweets. I tend to be more interested in savory spreads, creamy soups, and colorful salads. But I genuinely, unequivocally love every recipe in this chapter. Each dish incorporates a variety of familiar and unexpected spices that elevate the final product lightyears beyond mere saccharin sweetness. The recipes in this chapter include:
Happy Father’s Day to my amazingly wonderful, smoothie making, yogi Popsicle!
My dad is the best. He is second to none in humor, optimism and support. He has been my constant champion, even when my ambitions and ethics were decidedly against the current.
I think it’s fair to say my dad tends more towards a meat and potatoes diet. When I think of the food my dad raves about, it’s usually something like veal parmasean or an Omaha steak. Lately he has started making green smoothies (so proud!). But I think there is room for even more vegetables on his plate. And I’m not just talking about side dishes.
So many of us are accustomed to having an animal product as the center of our plate. But that’t not the way it has to be. As someone who is always happy to pile my up with vegetables and side dishes, it’s taken me awhile to understand why someone would feel they were lacking an animal based main dish.
But food is more than food. Satisfaction and satiation are as much about the psychology of the plate as what’s on it. Create a focal point on the plate that is protein rich, textured, and hearty and no one, not even my dad, will miss the animal-based meat!
The Center of the Plate Chapter is dedicated to you, Poppy. I want to keep you around for a while, so try out some of these hearty, chewy, creamy, and all around yummy recipes:
Artichoke Salad Wraps
Zucchini noodles with arugula pistachio pesto
Roasted Butternut Squash and Eggplant Steaks with Spiced Cashew Cream
Sweet Potato and Butternut Squash Pizza
Megadarra with Spiced Tahini Sauce
Cajun Red Beans and Sorghum
French Onion Risotto
Eggplant and Cauliflower Curry
Chickpea Crepes with Mushroom Ragu
Cauliflower Cream Fettuccine with Crispy Brussel Sprouts and Hazelnuts
Cauliflower Steaks with Truffle Chickpea Cauliflower Mash and White Wine Mushrooms
This has been a big year for my mom. She wrote her first book (go Mom!), she has put in countless hours to support her own mother, and she sold the house where we grew up to our neighbor’s daughter, whose will become a mother herself this August.
As food is more than food, homes are more than homes. They are the spaces that contain our joys and sorrows, our first steps and our birthdays and our mistakes. It can be bittersweet and overwhelming to sell your home. There is a fear, I’ve noticed, that some essential piece of you will disappear when the physical thing is gone and imperfect memories are all that remain. Big change reminds us of our own ethereal imprint on the world.
That’s why storytelling, in words and in food, is so important. Bronzedale Blackberry Pie is my way of capturing the story of our home in a recipe for my Mom, so we can savor the story of that time for years to come. It reminds me of the giant ceramic bowl that we would get out on special occasions to bake special treats. It reminds me of the hazelnut butter stored in the cupboard by the laundry chute. And blackberries always remind me of my mom.
May you write new stories with the mothers in your life through the food you share and the traditions you create, together.
For cherry blossoms and hammocks and swing sets
And walks through the woods
And gardens in the moss
For the sound of rain in the trees
And Peter Rabbit wallpaper
And the hole in my grey carpet
For the laundry shoot
And the apothocary full of spices
And the white costume bin in the basement
For the pink futon
And the Sesame Street Wallpaper
And the ferret’s cage
For riding bicycles down the driveway
And sliding down the basement steps on the ballet mat
And walking on rocks under the deck
For deer in the backyard
An the sound of foxes
And the turtle next to the water cooler
For the cream colored curtains
And the grape chandelier
And the smell of mulch piled on the driveway
For your green marble jewelry box
And the speckled light in spring
And the robin’s nest on your windowsill
For hazelnut butter
And black bread
And Parano cheese
And dark chocolate
And mint carob rice cakes
For the white weight lifting gym
And dad’s torn green shirt in the frame
And the orange dust the cherry blossoms leave on your feet.
1 1/2 cups raw cashews, soaked overnight and drained
juice of 2 lemons
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/3 cup liquid sweetener - maple syrup, coconut nectar, or agave
1/3 cup virgin coconut oil, melted
For the topping:
2 pints fresh blackberries
For the crust: Pulse all ingredients in the food processor until a sticky dough forms. Press the crust into the base of a greased 8 inch spring form pan. Set aside.
For the filling: Blend all ingredients on high until silky smooth. Pour over the crust. Place in the refrigerator for 15-20 minutes, until slightly firm.
To assemble: Top the creamy base with fresh blackberries in any shape or design you most enjoy. Return to the refrigerator and allow to chill for at least 1 hour.
Slice and serve.
For a raw food approach, use raw hazelnuts instead of roasted, and agave nectar as your liquid sweetener.
For the specific carbohydrate diet, use honey as your liquid sweetener.
For a whole foods, plant based approach, use maple syrup or coconut sugar.