Monday, August 30, 2010

okra maitake soup

I just got home from camping this weekend.. and luckily it was way more comfortable and enjoyable than the last camping trip I blogged about :) We enjoyed swordfish kabobs (again) and I brought a whole bunch of soaked and dehydrated walnuts, fresh peaches and nectarines, some buckwheat cookies, and some dried fruit. The weather was perfect and we basically had the camp grounds to ourselves. But in the end, I still missed my kitchen.. here's the first thing I made when I got home.

Okra Maitake Soup -
Makes 2 bowls (or 3-4 small servings)

1/2 yellow onion, chopped
1/3 cup dried maitake mushrooms, soaked for 30 minutes in about 2/3 cup lukewarm water (keep the water)
1 handful of okra, washed and cut into pieces
1 handful of spinach leaves
1 small serving of tempeh(and brand of kind you like), cut into cubes
1 cup chicken broth (or veggie broth
2 tbsp olive oil
1-2 tbsp tamari (wheat free soy sauce)

Soak maitake mushrooms in lukewarm water for about 30 minutes and save the water.
Heat olive oil in a pan and sauté onions for a few minutes, then add the okra and sauté a few minutes more. Add the tamari and then about 1/3 cup of the chicken broth with the spinach leaves and the tempe. Let steam for a couple minutes. Finally add the mushrooms and their soaking water and the rest of the chicken broth. Cook until thourouly heated and serve :)


Wednesday, August 25, 2010

it feels like fall buckwheat cookies

Perfectly sweet and soft.. and healthy.. and vegan, and gluten free and sugar free.. these cookies are easy to make and rock.
They just do.
This recipe was inspired by the Spunky Coconut's chocolate chip cookies.

Wet Ingredients:
1/2 cup apple sauce
1/4 cup honey
1/4 cup grapeseed oil
3 tbsp ground flax meal
1/2 tsp xanthum gum
1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
1 pinch stevia
1 tsp vanilla
1/4 tsp salt

Dry Ingredients:
1 cup almond flour
1/2 cup buckwheat flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder

1/3 cup carob chips (or chocolate chips)
1/3 cup raisins

Oven! 350.
Mix all the wet ingredients with an electric mixer (I just used an immersion blender.)
Then add the wet ingredients into the premixed bowl of dry ingredients and whip!
Lastly, mix in the carob chips and the raisins.

Use wet fingers to roll the dough and flatten into a cookie shape on parchment covered baking sheets. I kept a little bowl of water on the counter and had to wet my hands after making each cookie. Bake for 10-12 minutes.

I'm not sure how many cookies this really makes.. because I ate so much of the cookie dough. It was so good!!

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

veggie cod bake - a picnic :)

The weather is starting to get cool.. and bearable. So I enjoyed my dinner at the park just across from my house :) Yummy, filling, healthy, about $10 for 2 dinners, and all in 1 dish - this meal is common in my house. (Cutting down on dishes is important if one doesn't have a dishwasher!)

Oven! 350.
About 1 lb cod
2 tbsp Lemon juice
2 tbsp Olive oil
2-4 carrots, peeled and cut
1 yellow onion, chopped
1 crown broccoli, cut into little trees
2 tbsp fresh parsley and thyme
couple pinches of sea salt

First marinate the fish in lemon juice and olive oil in a baking dish. In the meanwhile, preheat the oven and prepare the vegetables. Toss the carrots into the dish and sprinkle the fish with salt, then cover with foil and bake for 15 minutes.

Take the fish out of the oven, cover it in the fresh herbs, and add the onion and broccoli. Then recover it with foil and bake for an additional 10-15 minutes. Enjoy!!

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

A is for Anna, Agrarian, and A Positive

A is for Anna. That's why I bought this mug for my kitchen utensils a long time ago.. but maybe it also stands for A positive. That's my blood type. I took a nifty little blood type test today to make sure. I've been looking into trying a different diet to try to heal my digestive disorder. The hunt + gather diet was nice for a while, and I learned a lot.. but I didn't actually get better. Not even with all the supplements, and the western medications, and the acupuncture, and the yoga, and the cod liver oil.. Nope. Still not better.

I was turned on to the Blood Type Diet by a few friends here in Columbia while I was buying my first pair of "healthy shoes" (Clarks). I've searched the web to see what people say about the diet and I read the book, "Eat Right For Your Type." There seem to be a bunch of people out there who think the diet's a bunch of bull.. and they would probably say the same thing if you told them they had to stop drinking alcohol and eating pizza. So - I'm going to go with my gut feeling about this one and jump in head first.

The recipes from now on will be based on my blood type. Type A. I don't know if it will work, but I'm going to try it out. If you are having digestive-related problems then maybe you should check the book out from your local library and figure out what your blood type is too.. if you decide not to change your diet based on Dr. D'Adamo's research, then at least it was an interesting read.

The major difference in my diet from now on will be that there will be no meat involved. "Type As flourish on vegetarian diets - the inheritance of your more settled and less warlike farmer ancestors." -Dr. D'Adamo

There are some other things I should tell you before this next chapter of my food life begins.. I got retested for my allergies. The first test I got, about a year ago, was a blood test. My blood was drawn and sent to a lab somewhere in Georgia where it was tested for 120 different foods. My new doctor/chiropractor thinks that these results are either old, inaccurate, or a combination of the two. So she had me bring in all the foods I was tested to be allergic to, and she muscle tested me by putting each one (one at a time) in my mouth and measuring the strength or weakness of my arm muscle.

Her test presented a radically different outcome than that of my first test last summer. It showed that I am not allergic to some of the things I thought I was. But this test, like any other, will not be as accurate as the test of time and a good old fashion elimination diet. Which is pretty much
what I've already been doing. So I'm planning on introducing the foods my new doctor thinks I'm not allergic to back into my diet one a time, and giving each food a week or two before I introduce the next food back in.

I am planning on introducing soy first. According to the blood type diet, type A's best get their protein from soy, fish, and a little poultry. And I'll be eating more grains again.. grains like buckwheat and oats. Eventually, I'll slowly introduce some dairy back in - in the form of cultured goat milk, and you might even see and egg in some pancakes. But this is all months away.. It's a little scary and stressful to make a big change in my diet, but it's going to make each day that much more exciting, and the best part will be a healthy Anna. I'll let you know when that happens.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

savory garlic zucchini spears

I didn't feel like eating much of a dinner yesterday - so this is what I made. Simple and delicious, but can you ever go wrong with a whole lot of garlic?

zucchini, speared
olive oil
garlic, minced, a lot of it
salt, just a pinch

Oven! 350. Mix oil, garlic, savory and salt in a bowl. Toss zucchini spears in mixture and place in a safe baking dish. Cook in oven for around 30 minutes. Then enjoy :)

Sunday, August 15, 2010

peach pops

I will never buy a popsicle ever again. The thought just seems so silly.

2 peaches

1/2 cup coconut milk
tiny pinch salt
normal pinch nutmeg
1 1/2 tsp honey, or other sweetener

Blend peaches, coconut milk, salt, nutmeg, and honey together. Put a few blueberries in your popsicle molds, then fill with the peach mixture. Freeze and enjoy.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

salmon and mango chutney with a view

While pet sitting at my uncle's house, my boyfriend made me this delicious dinner, of cedar smoked salmon with mango chutney.
Here's how he made the seriously amazing mango chutney:

1 ripe mango, peeled and chopped
1/2 1 leek, sliced and sautéed in olive oil with salt
1 big handful of cilantro, chopped
1 lime, juiced
1 tbsp olive oil
salt and pepper to taste

Mix and mash all ingredients together and enjoy on just about anything!

kiwi lime sherbet

If you don't have an
ice cream maker yet.. what are you waiting for? It's summer time and you should be eating healthy and easy to make ice cream with your friends and family!

Here's my kiwi lime sherbet:
5 ripe kiwis, peeled
2 frozen bananas, peeled and chopped (the frozen part probably isn't necessary)
3/4 cup non-dairy milk (I used 1/2 cup hemp milk, and 1/4 cup coconut)
1 1/2 tbsp lime juice
1 tbsp honey (or vegan sweetener of choice)

Blend all ingredients, then put in your pre frozen ice cream maker. Enjoy in 30 minutes!

Did I mention that you should get an ice cream maker? They're like, 30 bucks.

cashew cheese and my new favorite snack

Cashew cheese recipe here. It was was too salty for my tongue. So.. be careful! And salt to taste.

This is my new favorite snack: red grapes and lox :) mmm.

Lox. cashew cheese. chives... Fancy! This is really missing a cracker or some bread. Seriously. Or a bagel! Anna! No! That was your old life...

restaurant review - the classic cup

This wasn't the first time I enjoyed a meal at The Classic Cup in Kansas City, but now that I'm getting into reviewing restaurants I wanted to write about this meal. It was my first rack of lamb ever, and it was dreamy with the portberry sauce it came with. I used my fork and knife for as long as I could - but there's something about eating meat on a bone with your bare hands.. no? Is it just me?

They have a fantastic menu, check it out!

feast!! there was a cod sale

The sea food counter man said he'd give Molly and I a low price on the cod if we bought 3 pounds of it. So we did :) (only 2 lbs are shown in the photo!) And we thought we'd have more leftovers than we did.. but it was a feast, after all.

Mexican spiced cod: Oven! 350.
cumin, ground
smoked paprika
lemon juice
olive oil

Place cod in a baking dish with lemon juice and olive oil. Make sure the dish is an appropriate size for the amount of fish you have, this way you can use less olive oil and lemon juice, and the fish will still be surrounded by plenty of liquid.

Sprinkle fish with spices and bake for 20-30 minutes depending on the amount of fish you have. It should flake apart with a fork easily.

Our feast was accompanied with a yellow squash and a green onion, chopped and sautéed with herbs of all kinds and more random spices from my spice collection.

Columbia Center for Urban Agriculture

This produce came from my friends at the Columbia Center for Urban Agriculture. Isn't it beautiful? There were so many different kinds of delicious looking tomatoes, but I'm taking a break from tomatoes because they are an inflammatory food.

With every purchase you make at CCUA, you get a walk through the herb garden and may take all the herbs you need. The more you cut them, the more they grow!

And! I got a bunch of zinnias. Can't go wrong giving a girl some flowers :)

Thursday, August 5, 2010

easy breakfast while traveling

I'm almost finished with the posts from my trip. Here is the breakfast I ate while in Chicago.
Lydia's Organics Apricot Sun cereal, made of: sprouted buckwheat, apples, sprouted sunflower seeds, coconut, apricots, and agave nectar. All Lydia's Organics products are gluten free, raw, organic, and vegan. She has some great products on her website.. which also means - some good inspiration if you own a dehydrator :)

The fancy granola was initially a little expensive, but because it nourished me at least 6 times while I was traveling, it was well worth the cost. I pared it with some vanilla Tempt hemp milk. When I'm at home I make my own - but I don't bring my immersion blender with me on the road. Hmm.. that's actually not a bad idea.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010


It just so happens that in Minneapolis lives one of the allergic hedonist's biggest fans! Since I was randomly in her town, my friends and I decided to surprise her and her family with a dinner party! (We set it all up before hand with her husband of course) My friends in the 1st photo (Jenn, Erin, myself, and Parker - the photographer) showed up with bags of groceries and an ice cream maker and introduced ourselves at the front door.

Once all the introductions were made, and the hand painted aprons bestowed, 14 hands got to work in the kitchen making swordfish kabobs, wild rice with almonds and currants (I started soaking the rice that morning), and a Minneapolis inspired dessert, Mini-Raw-Ha's.

We made the same kabobs that I made on my camping trip (but oh so comfortable this time!) Swordfish marinated in wine and honey, with mushrooms, tomatoes, peppers, and red onion.

For the wild rice:

2 cups rice
4 cups water

4 tbsp lemon juice

1 tsp salt

3 tbsp olive oil
a bunch of herbs, fresh or dried.
1 cup slivered almonds

1 cup currants

Soak the rice in 4 cups of warm water plus the lemon juice for 7 hours in a pot.
Then bring to a boil, skim the top, reduce heat and stir in the salt, oil, and some of the herbs. Without removing lid, cook over lowest possible heat for about 45 minutes. Once the rice is done, add some more fresh herbs, and toss in the almonds and the currents. Done :)

A few days before the big surprise, Parker took Jenn and I to see the Minnehaha Falls. That is pretty much the only connection between the Mini-Raw-Ha's and Minneapolis, other than the fact that we created it there :)

A Mini-Raw-Ha is a single serving dessert. (I guess a Raw-Ha would be the same thing but in a pie dish, that people would share) So, begin with little bowls, or coffee cups, or ramekins.
Then add the crust (coarsely processed dates, walnuts, and coconut flakes) to the bottom of the dish. The next layer is thinly sliced apples (as many as you want) sprinkled with ground nutmeg.

Ice cream is next: We had two frozen
ice cream maker bowls (thanks to Parker's mom!) and made two different flavors.
1. cinnamon honey ice cream: 1 can whole coconut milk, 1 banana, 1/4 cup honey, 1 tsp cinnamon, 1 tsp vanilla.
2. chocolate mint ice cream: 1 can whole coconut milk, 1 banana, 1/4-1/2 cup cocoa powder, 1/4 tsp vanilla, handful of fresh mint leaves finely chopped.
Place ingredients in a blender or food processor then follow your ice cream maker's instructions.

Lastly, we topped the Mini-Raw-Ha's with blueberries. Have fun making this recipe your own raw dessert by adding, subtracting, multiplying, or completely changing the layers. Desserts prepared in personal sized dishes are great, because then you don't have to worry about someone else (I'll use myself as an example) taking more than their fair share :)

Enjoy! And thank you to Cathy and her family for letting us into their home and sharing this amazing meal with us, and to Parker for the b-e-a-utiful photos!

Monday, August 2, 2010

restaurant review - ecopolitan

My friend from elementary school, Jenn, and I picked a place we had never been before and decided to meet there. This is how the Minneapolis trip was started. I have to say, that Minneapolis is the cat's meow. With an awesome art museum, food co-ops, lakes, nice summer weather, and a live tango band to dance to every week!! If it just didn't get so cold there.. hmm. (I learned that Minneapolis has two seasons: winter and road construction. There's your joke for the day.. but.. it's not really a joke.)

Anyway, one place I visited 3 times was a building called the Ecopolitan. It's full of natural doctors and massage therapists, and on the main level is a raw food restaurant. The first time I went there with a large group of friends, Jenn and I split a freaking amazing salad made with kale, kiwi, red cabbage, tomato, fresh basil, sprouted quinoa, raisins, and a tahini-garlic dressing.

We also got the flaxeed tostadas made with: flaxseed-sunflower shells with lentil “taco meat”, greens, marinated mushrooms, onion, olives, cilantro, cashew “sour cream,” & hot sauce. And it was served with salsa & guacamole. I couldn't help myself from getting a dessert to go as well.. I got a slice of coconut creme pie. It's just too exciting when I can actually eat dessert at a restaurant and feel good afterwards. I recommend checking out their website and visiting their restaurant if you're in the area, or at least downloading their menu and trying to make some of their dishes at home :)

My photos from the first meal didn't turn out so well, but the 2nd time I went there, I visited their juice bar and my friends and I got the "orange dream" (orange, carrot, and ginger) and "sweet beet" (beet, carrot, apple, kale, and ginger). mmm

The THIRD time I went back was by myself to get breakfast.. I got the "rawnola" made of crunchy cinnamon spouted and dehydrated buckwheat groats, with strawberries, pineapple, apple, cherries, dates, raisins, all topped with a date syrup and served with freshly made coconut milk. It was delicious, organic, $6. How? I don't know.

Sunday, August 1, 2010


My boyfriend took me out to a fancy restaurant before I left for my trip.. and instead of being sad when it came time for dessert, because I can't enjoy anything on the menu, we just left and strolled down to the root cellar (our local store where you can buy local produce when you don't wake up in time for the farmer's market).

We enjoyed blueberries, apples, little plums, and strawberries.. outside on a bench. :) Life is good.

raw zucchini linguini with fresh tomato sauce

Hey everyone! Sorry for the big break in posts.. I was on vacation again. Poor me, I know. But before I write about what I ate on my trip - I have to play a little catch up. Here was a meal a friend and I made before I left. I was trying to use up the produce I still had, and in this case - it was a zucchini somewhere between the size of my calf and my thigh. I remember making this recipe once last summer, pre-blog-life.. so I knew I had to make it again to share with you.

The recipe is from one of Williams-Sonoma cookbooks (but I left out the cheese...)
The process on this one is slightly tedious.. but worth it! And if you make extra, it keeps in the fridge :) I ate raw zucchini linguini with 4 different toppings over the four days it took me to finish it all. Note: The process goes faster with a friend you need to catch up with.. so.. invite one? When I tasted the finished product, I was immediately brought back to Italy. I lived there for four months, and it was before I knew about all my allergies (thank God).. But since I haven't been able to have dairy, wheat, or even wine, it's been hard to recreate the Italy taste. Garlic, basil, olive oil, and a good tomato will do the trick.


zucchini, 2 lbs
sea salt and freshly ground pepper
ripe tomatoes, 2 lbs total weight, diced (there's a photo coming up of what a tomato should look like on the inside)
garlic, 2 cloves (because I was making a huge amount.. I probably added more than what the recipe suggested)
fresh basil, cut into thin ribbons (I just used a handful from my herb garden.. the recipe says "leaves from 1/2 a bunch" What? Oh yeah.. basil comes from the grocery store.. I forgot.)
olive oil, 3 tbsp (I hate saying extra virgin.. you know what I mean)

parmesan cheese, small chunk (get permission from your body first, mine says "no.")
Using a vegetable peeler, cut zucchini lengthwise into slices about 1/8th inch thick. Carefully place slices in a large bowl and sprinkle with 1 tablespoon salt, and toss gently to coat. Line your workspace with cloth towels and transfer the salted zucchini slices, arranging them in a single layer, and let them stand for 20 minutes.

Turn the slices over and let stand for another 10 minutes. Then gently rinse under cold running water. Using clean towels pat the slices dry, then arrange them in a loose mound on a serving platter. The zucchini should have gone through a transformation - from slimy to crisp.

In a large bowl, combine the tomatoes with their juices, garlic, and basil, and toss gently to mix. Stir in 2 tbsp olive oil, and a generous pinch of salt and pepper. Drizzle the remaining 1 tbsp olive oil over the zucchini and top with a few grinds of pepper. Spoon the tomato mixture evenly over the zucchini, and serve right away.