Category Archives: Raw

Fire Cider

big jar
Steeping Fire Cider
Fire Cider is a potent tonic
Fire Cider is an all-natural, organic herbal remedy for cold and flu but also for so much more. Although it can speed up the healing process of a cold or flu, I use it as preventative medicine to keep me and my gut healthy all winter long. Fire Cider boosts immune function, increases blood flow and oxygen delivery, breaks up mucous, and helps the body to remove wastes from tissues. As the colder months creep in and our immune systems all grow a little weaker, this powerful potion gives our gut a little kick start and warms it up so it can function at a higher level and fight against colds and flu. The word “fire” refers to the many warming ingredients in the cider that help our digestions function properly.
A healthy gut is the key to overall health
Why? All the good microbes are, for the most part, hanging out in our guts and their job is to support our immune system, protect us from diseases, and detoxify the body. This good bacteria is so important for our bodies, which is why taking antibiotics weakens our defense system. Yes, antibiotics take out the bad bacteria- which play a role in inflammation and chronic disease- but they also wipe out our good bacteria, which is vital for optimum health! Bacteria (good bacteria) is our body’s best friend, which is why I like to consume komucha, kefir, miso, and other products that contain probiotics. Don’t worry though, friends, if you drink a shot of this fire cider once or twice daily (preferably in the morning when your digestion is its clearest), you won’t need any antibiotics because you will be so incredibly healthy and feeling stellar all winter long!
So what’s in this magical stuff?
I could write for days about the beneficial properties of all the ingredients in the cider so I will just list a few of their powers. The ingredients in this cider are all warming, so essentially, they give our digestion a big bear hug when it gets cold out.

Horseradish root: pungent, deeply heating, has long been used as a diuretic, antibacterial and antiviral, aids digestion and stimulates the release of enzymes to help break down food.

Apple cider vinegar: helps the body maintain a healthy alkaline pH level, increases energy, fights infection, detoxifies the body and liver, stimulates cardiovascular circulation, breaks up mucous throughout the body, cleanses the lymph nodes and reduces congestion.

Ginger: traditional stomach soother, relaxes and soothes the intestinal tract, immune-boosting, anti-inflammatory.

Turmeric: anti-inflammatory. Inflammation is the major cause of aging, many diseases, cancer, and arthritis. Increasing the amount of anti-inflammatory ingredients in your diet (like turmeric, ginger, and omega-3 fatty acids) will help you stay young, vibrant, fresh, and active!

Raw honey: an antimicrobial agent and antioxidant. Keeps things (i.e. infections) from growing in the body. It is important to buy raw honey because it has not been heated or processed and, therefore, still contains all of its sweet minerals, phytonutrients, and antibacterial powers.

Oranges & lemons: antioxidant, antibiotic, contains vitamin C, helps absorb iron into the blood.

shotMorning shots anyone?

Fire Cider

1 quart apple cider vinegar (I use Bragg’s brand)

1/2 cup fresh horseradish root, grated

5-6 garlic cloves, roughly chopped

1/2 cup of onion, chopped

1/2 cup of fresh ginger root, grated

1/4 cup of fresh turmeric root, grated (if this is hard to find just omit and use turmeric powder in your other dishes)

juice of two oranges

juice of two lemons

1/4 cup of raw honey, dissolved in warm water

Place all ingredients except apple cider vinegar in a large glass jar (or separate evenly into several smaller glass jars). Mix with a wooden spoon to incorporate all ingredients. Pour the apple cider vinegar over the ingredients, give it a stir, and seal the glass jar(s) tightly. Place in the fridge, let steep for 4-6 weeks, and enjoy a shot or two daily!

firecider2

The brand of fire cider I used to buy before making my own. Great stuff but it gets pricey!

*4-6 weeks seems to be the ample amount of time to let the cider steep in order to get the most benefits and flavor from it, however, you can make a big batch and start taking it right away. The good news is, it will get even better and more potent with each day you take it!

*I like to take a neat shot of fire cider in the morning after my tea and before I’ve had my coffee. I don’t mind the strong flavor but it can be a little offensive to some so try adding more honey or maple syrup to your shot. I take 1-2 shots in the morning as preventative medicine.

*Fire cider is also great in marinades, dressings, Bloody Marys, or to add some zest to a big glass of lemon honey water.

Cheers to your health and keeping every piece of you warm these winter months,

)O( Sarah

manda shotMy sister taking her morning shot

Advertisements
Tagged , , , , , , , , ,

DIY Nut Butters

IMG_6129  IMG_6132

When I started making my own nut butters, it was a revolutionary experience. They are easy, fast, delicious, and instantly gratifying. There is nothing quite like dipping your spoon into a food processor full of warm, gooey, roasted nut butter. Making them at home means you can make any nut or seed into butter and you can make hybrids too [hazelnut/almond is delish!]

When making almond butter, I roast the nuts for 20-25 minutes before putting them in the food processor. For cashew butter/cream, I soak the cashews in filtered water for at least four hours. Cashew cream is a beautiful thing, for real. You can add less water to make cashew frosting, add more water to make a cream, and add even more water if you want cashew milk. Adding a few dates to the cashew cream adds some extra yummy lovin’ and it’s raw!

Tips:

*It is important to soak or roast your seeds/nuts before you butter em’ up. Some of the many benefits of soaking/roasting seeds include: neutralize enzyme inhibitors, encourage the production of beneficial enzymes, increase the amount of vitamins [especially B vitamins], break down gluten and make digestion easier, increase protein absorption.

*Try any seeds or nuts, play around and find your favorite one! [hazelnuts, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, brazil nuts…]

*After soaking/roasting nuts or seeds, place in food processor and processor on high for a minute or so. Scrape down sides of food processor and keep processing on high until a butter forms. Be patient! Suddenly and magically, the oils from the nuts with release and silky smooth nut butter will appear before your eyes. Get your spoon ready for a toasty dip.

Cheers to the beauty of simplicity and our nutty tendencies,

Sarah D.

IMG_5641

IMG_5685

*So the blog has kind of been on hiatus for a bit. I have been busy moving back from Europe and moving to Burlington, VT. Summer in Burlington has been truly magical so far and filled with lots of yoga teaching, nature, exploration, and locally farmed foods! Excited to share some Vermont love with y’all this summer. Get ready for some super smoothies and fresh juices (:*

Tagged , , , , ,

Raw date squares

IMG_3671

I absolutely adore dates. Date cookies, date cake, dates on ice cream, date paste, dates on their own. They are wonderfully sweet and I love their soft, sticky texture. Mejdool dates are the way to go. I discovered these beauties at the outdoor market. In Italy they are called datteri and since I wasn’t sure of the conversion, I let the lady give me as many dates as she wanted, which resulted in a lot of dates. After nabbing a date here and there from the jar during the week, I decided to make something with them. I didn’t want new, I didn’t want hard. I just wanted the simple, caramel-like flavor of dates in a different form. So I adapted, from who else but My New Roots. Sarah Britton’s recipe for raw date squares involves six simple ingredients and no baking required. Perfection.

IMG_3540Raw baking is what’s up. Seriously, it makes my taste buds do a little dance. Not only is raw baking easy, it allows you to reap the full benefits and nutrients of the food, which can be diminished from cooking. Dates are a staple in raw desserts because they are extremely sweet, rich, versatile, and their texture makes for moist, luscious, and luxurious treats. Plus, using dates means you can say the recipe is sugar-free. I totally ate mine for breakfast…and after lunch…and after dinner. Dates are my jam.

Dates are powerhouses. These wrinkly nuggets pack quite a nutrient, vitamin, and mineral punch. The fruit is rich in fiber, iron, potassium, calcium, manganese, copper, and magnesium. They contain vitamin A, B vitamins, vitamin K, and many antioxidants such as tannins. They are easily digestible and extremely energizing. Plus, they are a great alternative to those ugly fake sweeteners and refined sugars. Did I mention that I love dates?

IMG_3574During the making of this dessert, I spent a lot of time with my walnuts, or noci, in Italian. In Italy, it is normal to buy whole walnuts instead of the packaged kind [but definitely go for the packaged kind if you want].  It took me a while to crack and dismantle all those suckers [albeit, part of the time was spent marveling at the way the nuts are nestled in their shells] and it quickly turned into a walnut war zone in the kitchen. But that was all the fun of it.

There is something profoundly beautiful about becoming intimate with my food. I think of it as a reciprocal relationship. My food is definitely going to be getting intimate with my body so…I just get intimate with it first. People sometimes ask me why I take the more ‘tedious’ route. Why do I peel all my chickpea skins when making hummus? Why do I scrape the skins off my soaking almonds? It’s simple: I like to spend time with my food. Why? Because it’s meditative, intimate, personal, and rewarding. And when I cracked one walnut perfectly down the middle to discover a heart, boy, was it all worth it.

Now I leave you with some very sweet pictures and a fabulous raw recipe. How do you like your dates? I would love to hear from you!

IMG_3580

IMG_3596

IMG_3621  IMG_3618

IMG_3632

IMG_3649

IMG_3650Recipe adapted from My New Roots

Raw Date Squares

Ingredients:
Filling
2 cups chopped, pitted Medjool dates
2 Tbsp. water
Juice of 1 large, unwaxed blood orange
Zest of 1 large, unwaxed blood orange

Crust

2 cups walnuts
1 cup raw oats ground in a food processor or oat flour
2 tsp. ground cinnamon
4 Tbsp honey [use maple syrup for vegan version]

Directions:

1. Soak dates in water and orange juice for 30 to 60 minutes, stirring once or twice.
2. Coarsely grind nuts in a food processor. Add ground oats or oat flour and pulse to mix.
3. Add cinnamon first, then honey/maple syrup one tablespoon at a time until the mixture holds together.
4. Lightly oil a 9-inch square pan or round cake pan with coconut oil
5. Press a little over half of the nut mixture into the bottom of the pan, reserving the rest for later.
6. Puree the date and orange juice mixture until it reaches a desired consistency. I pureed mine until it was smooth but still had little bits of date speckled throughout. Mix in orange zest or use to sprinkle on top of squares.
7. Crumble the remaining half of the crust mixture over the dates; press lightly with your hands or a spoon.
8. Refrigerate for 20-30 minutes and serve. Watch it disappear before your eyes.

As always, thank you Sarah B. for your knowledge, inspiration, and amazingly delicious recipes!

Happy dating,

Sarah D.

Tagged , , , , , , , ,