You are currently browsing the monthly archive for October 2009.

I am pretty bummed out that the rain decided to stop! I LOVE THE RAIN! I probably say that only because it is rare to have rain in LA, and this: 
  • FairCurrently: 84°F Fair 91°F | 64°F is a joke! I mean it is FALL darn it!

So here I am in my skivies (oo la-la) writing a post so I don’t have to turn on the A/C in October!  I am also all sweaty from my lil’ afternoon yoga sesh.  You can find it here I am pretty sure I have seen this Video in the blogosphere before.  I only did 15 min, just to stretch and move, but I sure did break a sweat!

So let me fill ya’ll in on the last couple days:)

As you all know I went to see BOB DYLAN on Tuesday and I have been playing catch up from that night of pure bliss.  Before the concert Sean and I went to M Cafe for dinner!  I have blogged about this place in the past at The Plate Decorator.  It is one of my all time favorite restaurants!!!

The glorious M Cafe deli

The glorious M Cafe deli

I love the atmosphere; clean, warm, friendly, and full of yummy healthy eats!

How great is that?

How great is that?

I was hungry but I always over order here because I never can decide on what to get, the menu is huge, and it changes with the season.

Yes this is heaven...

Yes this is heaven...

This was the best on the menu if you ask me! Mashed chunky Kobucha squash with raisins and quinoa!!!!! It was so creamy and wonderful must try to create this at home.

cute and delish

cute and delish

We both had some sushi.  I had the Shiitake-Avocado Roll: sweet soy-glazed shiitake, avocado, cucumber & toasted sesame.  Sean had the Spicy Tuna Roll: chopped tuna, seven-spiced soy mayo, cucumber & avocado.  I love the variety of dishes they serve.

Sean's fave

Sean's fave

He loves this Hummus & Falafel Wrap: roasted garlic hummus, mixed grain falafel, carrots, radish, cucumber, red onion, sprouts, lettuce, tahini-soy yogurt dressing in a whole wheat lavash.  It comes with your choice of one side, I forced suggested he get the Kale with Spicy Peanut Sauce. Mmmmmm…… I usually get sides and then a salad or sushi and can NEVER finish it all.  So we took what was left in a to go box for after the concert drunk munchies snacks.  Oh yea and we split this, but I ended up just having a few small sips of my half and Sean gladly finished the rest. 

very tasty though

very tasty though

What is with boys and beer???

The concert was AMAZING! I had a Jim Beam and Ginger Ale cocktail or two for squids and giggles, but all in good fun!

The next couple of days were jam-packed with school and work Story of my life….. But here are some of the eats I chowed down on:

Anderson's Vegetarian Pea Soup with homemade Veggie Pulp Flax Crackers

Anderson's Vegetarian Pea Soup with homemade Veggie Pulp Flax Crackers

This is one of my fave soups.  I love Pea soup, Lentil soup, Veggie Chili anything warm and filled with creamy veggies (or beans).  My digestive  “>sytem as of late has been saying NO to beans so I am steering clear for a little while- ya know lots of umm gas…embarassing to live with the one you love and be consumed by flatulence!  The crackers I adapted from Kristin’s recipe this is a really easy and fun recipe to play with.  I don’t have a Dehydrator or a heat lamp like Heabs, but I do have an oven that goes down to 170 degrees, so I make it work!  They take about 4 hours so just watch them, not the best for my gas bill but oh well:)

Green Smoothie

Green Smoothie

Here we have: Peachy Green Smoothie

  • 1 banana
  • 1 grapefruit peeled
  • 1 peach pitted
  • 1/2 bunch of cilantro
  • 4 dino kale leaves
  • hand full of spinach
  • hand full of ice
  • 1 T maca
  • 1 T mesquite
  • 1 T chia seeds
  • 1 T coconut oil
  • 1 T Udo’s Oil 3,6,9 Blend
  • little water to get things moving in my CRAPY blender:)
ready to slurp

ready to slurp

Yummy! I always DOWN my smoothies and wish there was MORE to drink! I try to “chew” each sip, but they just taste SOOO GOOD! I really love this combo…you may think cilantro in a smoothie? But I urge you to try it! It is sooo refreshing and like a tropical storm in your mouth. I try not to add too much fruit, my skin doesn’t like the sugar, so cilantro really helps to add another dimension without the sugar. 

 I have also tried:

  • Basil
  • Mint
  • Parsley

But I find cilantro to be my fave, most flavor for the amount of herb needed. 

Oat bran and Kamut flakes topped with Hemp seeds and Cocao Nibs

Oat bran and Kamut flakes with Almond Breeze topped with Hemp seeds and Cocao Nibs

 
Raw Asparagus Tempeh Avocado Sandwich on Sprouted Ezekiel Bread

Raw Asparagus Tempeh Avocado Sandwich on Sprouted Ezekiel Bread

Teriyaki Tofu Salad with some added Veggies

Teriyaki Tofu Salad with some added Veggies

 I got this salad from my restaurant and added a few more veggies to the lot.  Here is baby mixed greens, kale, asparagus, tomato, avocado, spinach, and a wonderful homemade Dill Pickle!!!! You can find the recipe here at Meghans blog. This was a crazy easy and FUN way to make your own pickles all natural and no sugar. Bonus.  They are absolutly delish, garlicky and super crunchy!!

oat bran in a jar

oat bran in a jar

 This wonderful invention really hit my radar! I love the idea of not wasting any ANY nut butter, plus it is fun to eat out of. I brought this with my to school and had b-fast in the parking lot on a rainy day.  So sad the rain has gone.

 So enjoy the pics, I know I enjoyed eating everything! Have a lovely weekend! Mine is full of Birthday celebrations, my b-day isn’t until Monday but we are celebrating ALL weekend! Be back with the details soon:)

Love + good eats, Cassandra

 

Hey everybody,

This is a quick post to tell you about The Health Nut, Emily’s Mix My Granola Giveaway!!! The lovely people of Mix My Granola have generously offered a $10 gift certificate to one lucky reader.You can find the info here.

Have a lovely day, tonight is Bob Dylan for me so I will catch up later!

Love + granola, Cassandra

Farmers Market eats

Farmers Market eats

On Sunday my BF, Sean, and I decided to venture to the Mar Vista Farmers Market.  It is usually too crowded for us to go on Sunday afternoon, but we were craving some fresh fruit. I have been trying to not eat too much fruit lately.

 I had some skin problems last time I went ALL RAW for about 2 weeks.  My acne was way outta control.  I always have a blemish or two, but on all raw my skin hated me!!! I blamed it on the toxins releasing through my skin, and the sugar in the fruit.  I was eating A LOT of fruit.  As soon as I stopped eating the fruit my skin started to clear up back to normal. 

 Now I don’t know about you, but I think EVERYONE deserves CLEAR skin!!!  

 A little skin history about me:

I went on Accutane at 13 years old.  Now, back then I had really really bad skin.  I had, and still sometimes do, what they call; Cystic Acne.  Which is very deep and very large under the skin type blemishes.  I also had “backne” and “chestne”, this means I broke out on my back, shoulders and chest… ewwwww!!!  That was the main reason I went on the prescription drug.  I was embarrassed to wear tank tops or short sleeves.  You could see the lil’ zits down my shoulders and arms, it was horrible.  It was hard enough being a teenager going through the greasy hair, mood swings and hormones, but to have backne on top of it all?  So my mom agreed to put me on the “wonder pill”.  My sister had the same skin problems and went on it a few years before me and saw AMAZING results.  

Of course, I have heard some terrible things about this drug and if I were to go back in time, I am not sure I would be so eager to take it.  But, at the time I all I wanted was clear skin.  Let me tell you, the side effects were pretty brutal.  Dry skin, chapped lips, dry itchy eyes, red skin….etc. But after a year of taking the pill my skin was CLEAR! 

Little did I know that it was only temporary.  A year later the acne came back, not as bad, and not on my back, thank god.  But I was very sad to see any blemish after a year of torture. 

Fast forward to my 20’s.  I still break out.  I find my diet is KEY to the amount of break outs I have.  I have naturally big pores, and combination skin, sometimes dry and sometimes oily.  Stress is a huge factor aswell.   Oh ya, Aunt Flow always washes in some red spots on my face too:) 

But can’t a girl dream of not having to wear cover up???? I went on a Detox 2 years ago. My Aunt wrote a book called The Ultimate Detox Diet.  Her name was Teri Kerr M.A, R.D, L.D she ran the vitamin and supplement company Pioneer.  She passed away in 2006, but views on healthy eating and her wonderfully free spirit lives on in me still.  The point being, on her Ultimate Detox diet my skin had never been clearer!!!! It was perfection, if I do say so myself.

Halloween '07

Halloween '07

Yes, I was happy with my skin as Snow White on Halloween!  Not only was my skin clear but my weight was just right too!  So why did it get bad again???Why did I stop the diet?? I stopped the detox because it caused me to restrict my eating a bit too much.  When I started to eat more normally, that is when the zits started to pop back up.  I can not detox for life, ya know?

Now I break out if:

  • I eat too much sugar
  • I am really stressed
  • I don’t get enough sleep
  • I don’t drink enough water
  • I don’t wash my face
  • I breath…. J/K

It feels like I am always balancing my diet to secure my skin, and then I still get  a blemish!! Any tips for clear skin?  I feel like I have tried everything known to man!

 I have used:

  • Proactiv Solution
  • Over the counter creams
  • prescription creams
  • Accutane
  • MSM
  • Garlic
  • Clay masks
  • Tea Tree
  • Facials
  • Scrubs, Acids and toners!

I am desperate to have the glowing skin of a Raw Foodist.  Anyone know when that detox stage eventually passes in a Raw food diet?  Silly question I know the answer; everyone is different.   But I could not take the amount of stress the acne puts on me, it hurts, it’s ugly, I have lower self-esteem…etc. 

I am not sure what is next for me and my skin, only time will tell.  Meanwhile I am trying not to eat a lot of sugar, even natural sugar. But if I do, the only way to go is fresh from the Farmers Market.

***

More on “raw food adventures”… I drug brought Sean with me to a raw restaurant this Sunday. 

the menu

the menu

We went to Juliano’s Planet Raw.  It was crazy good! Juliano is a master chef of raw food gourmet cuisine. Sadly, Sean is allergic to almonds ( I know right??? SO  sad to be him!)  and most nuts, besides Peanuts.  I would DIE if I were him, no Almond Butter, no cashews or walnuts????  But he was a bad good sport and came with.  We had a very hard time trying to find anything on the menu not containing nuts.  I never noticed that EVERYTHING (practically) in a raw gourmet dish has a nut base.

 

Tortilla Soup

Tortilla Soup

I started with the soup du jour, and it was FABULOUS! Spicy and WARM! The base was cashew so Sean couldn’t try it. It had a very creamy texture and it was thick and yummy with avocado pieces and cilantro floating in it!  Best “raw” soup I have ever had!  ( I haven’t had any others hehe).   

Cali Roll

Cali Roll

For my main dish (fyi: I never have a starter and then a main dish, but there was sooo much I wanted to try) I had the Cali Roll, named I assume after the California Roll.  I really loved this dish! I am a HUGE sushi fan, so this was right up my ally!  It tasted exactly like sushi, but with a different crunchier texture.  So so good, made with a seed cheese, and filled with veggies and on the side was shredded cabbage with a honey mustard dressing….mmmm….

Isn't that plate gorge!

Isn't that plate gorge!

I was going to share, but I ate them all!!!

Avo Sandwich

Avo Sandwich

This was Sean’s, and it was quite a delicious dish.  It had nuts, hidden in the “mayo”, so Sean couldn’t eat it, too bad.  I ate it later as a snack! It was Flax crackers with cashew mayo, avocado, greens, pickled sesame broccoli and some of the cabbage with honey mustard.  I just love the plating here, so colorful and appetizing!

While we were there, Juliano came out to say hi to his friends eating at the table behind us.  If I were a more established blogger I would have asked to take a pic with him, alas I am a Newbie! ( and not that brave).  But he seemed really nice, crazy hairdo, but that is besides the case.  Our waitress was sweet, she looked 12 and had a voice of a 30 yr old.  The atmosphere was cozy, smelled of patchouli and we could see the kitchen from our seats.  The patio is pleasant, kinda right there on the street though, corner of Broadway and 6th. 

 I would go back for sure, but prob not with Sean.  Too hard for him to eat there without having his throat close up!!!

Off to study Marketing, I have a BIG test on Wednesday and I won’t have time to study tomorrow.  I am going to see…. DRUMROLL…..

********BOB DYLAN in concert tomorrow!!!!!********

So I may not get a chance to post tomorrow, but I will be back with the scoop later:)

Love + Raw food, Cassandra

there they are all standing in a row. Big ones, small ones, some as big as your HEAD…..”  Ok ok, so I only have one….but here is how I open my coconuts to get out THE GOOD STUFF!
get out the cutting board and a BIG kinfe

get out the cutting board and a BIG knife

slice off the tip

slice off the tip

cut away husk to reveal the 3 lines

cut away husk to reveal the 3 lines

carefully find a soft spot with your knife and hack in

carefully find a soft spot with your knife and hack in

slice round in a circle

slice round in a circle

 

pop the top open

pop the top open

mmmm, look at all the water!

mmmm, look at all the water!

grab a jar and a funnel

grab a jar and a funnel

nice amount for like 1/2 the price

nice amount for like 1/2 the price

scrape out the flesh with a spoon

scrape out the flesh with a spoon

 

the fleshy goodness

the fleshy goodness

lovely jar of coconut (flesh)

lovely jar of coconut (flesh)

I buy my Young Coconuts anywhere I see them under $2.00 each.  They are not usually organic that way, but my budget does not allow me to always buy organic.  Hiss, boo I know.  I can usually find the young variety on sale this time of year, not sure why because they are a year round fruit, at places like Ralph’s, Albertsons and sometimes WF has a sale! I have heard that Asian markets have them too, but at mine they are not a great deal cheaper.  I love Love LOVE coconut water! So refreshing, and so good for you. I use the flesh to make a pudding or just eat it right then and there.  This particular c-nut had very slippery thin flesh.  Sometimes you really hit the jack pot and get one with thick and almost crunchy flesh.  Thats how I like it!  Coconuts are one of the highest sources of electrolytes known to man.  So grab your knife and get a hakin’!!! You will thank me later:)

Love + coconuts, Cassandra

How is your weekend so far? I have lot’s of eats to show ya’ll from mine!!  Best of all I got my camera back 🙂 Friday I had my Japanese class, so much fun.  I am half Japanese and half…well…white.  I really like getting in touch with my heritage. Before class I decided to try something different for breakfast.
 
yummy tea to warm my tummy

yummy tea to warm my tummy

Usually I have coffee in the morning, but I am sticking to cutting back on my caffeine intake, so if I don’t ABSOLUTLY NEED coffee, I will opt for tea instead.  This tea was not even caffeinated!!! I love this brand and the flavor of the Good Hope Vanilla is to DIE for! 
The morning mix-ins

The morning mix-ins

 

After it hit the Bullet

After it hit the Bullet

I have been trying all sorts of NEW GRAINS for breakfast.  I am curious to see which ones hold be the best, taste the best, chew the best and mostly DIGEST the best (to me of course, everyone is different).  Friday I made Whole Gain Amaranth!!! I have been cooking my oats and other morning grains the same way as Meghan from Making Love in the Kitchen, you can find the recipe here.  Basically you soak the grain, I do it overnight, then drain, rinse and cook them on the stove top like rice.  So far I have tried:

  • Whole Grain Amaranth
  • Whole Wheat Quinoa
  • Millet
  • Steel Cut Oats
  • Oat Groats
  • Rolled Oats
  • Oat Bran-my all time fave
  • Whole Rye Berries
  • Bulgar Wheat

I LOVE them all!  I really like the Millet and the Bulgar Wheat, totally different textures than the oats. Millet has a sweet corn flavor to me which reminds me of eating Cornbread with honey!!! The Bulgar Wheat is nice and fluffy!! I will be making these all again for more comparison.  After all a REAL scientific experiment is tested time and time again to get the same results! Hehe…

Let’s get to know Amaranth!

Amaranth has been around for 8,000 years and was a staple food of the Aztecs.  It came to the US in the 1970’s.  Today the grain is found in health food stores and can be used to extract Amaranth oil.

Nutrition Facts for 1/4 cup: 

  • 180 cal
  • 3 g fat
  • 1 g sugar
  • 7 g protein
  • 7 g fiber
In the pot

In the pot

I simmered my grains with 1 T of Coconut Oil so it wouldn’t stick. 

Ready to eat!

Ready to eat!

Spoon out grain into bowl on top of ground mix-ins.  Top with 1 banana and some Raw Cocoa Nibs!!! So good! The Amaranth has a bit of a crunchy texture, even though I cooked it for 25 min… like Rice Crispies! All the while, the oil and water turn it kind of gooey, very tasty.  I think I splashed a bit of Almond Breeze in the pot before I spooned it out and served it…to myself 🙂

Lunch on days I have class is usually eaten in my car.  Confession: I like listening to KPFK and munching on my packed lunch right there in the parking lot. 

Ezikiel sprouted bread with humus + 1/2 an Avo and raw broccoli and carrots

Ezekiel sprouted bread with humus + 1/2 an Avo and raw broccoli and carrots

I usually do not have a dessert after lunch, but I had some very tempting Medjool Dates in the fridge. I packed 2 like this little gem with Almond Butter:

Natures Candy

Natures Candy

After lunch I headed to one of my FAV stores, The Santa Monica Homeopathic Pharmacy, I LOVE this place.  I remember going there as a kid with my mama to get remedies.  I haven’t been there in some time and it smells exactly the same! And look what I got!

Free tote and samples!

Free tote and samples!

It was their stores anniversary and I guess I spent enough moolah to get the gift with purchase! Heres the loot:

Smoothie add-ins

Smoothie add-ins

I went to the Co-Op (best health food store, far surpasses WF) to get myself a B-Day gift!!! My birthday is not until the 19th but I really wanted it!

Yeah! What better to compliment David Wolfe but come Kombuchaaa.

Yeah! What better to compliment David Wolfe but some Kombuchaaa.

This book is amazing so far!! All the great information about Goji, Cocoa, and much more! After shopping, my wallet empty and feet tired…I went home to try the new goodies and made myself a green smoothie.  I love adding as much GREEN to my smoothies.  I usually can not taste the green if  I add enough!  I love the basic with spinach, banana and Almond Breeze.  But I feel I can handle the more powerful greens now, so I am “upping” them all the time.  Perfect fuel for work!

Ooohh la la

Ooohh la la

The Superfood Trilogy

The Superfood Trilogy

All in the pool

All in the pool

Best For You Green Smoothie

  • 1 banana
  • 2 cups spinach
  • handful of Ice
  • 1 cup unsweetened Vanilla Almond Breeze
  • 1 T UDO’s Oil 3,6,9 blend
  • 1 T Dr. Schulze’s Super Food Plus
  • ½ T Maca powder
  • ½ T Mesquite powder
  • ½-1 T raw cocoa powder
  • Pinch or 2 of stevia

Blend all ingredients except the maca, mesquite and cocoa, on high until smooth. Then add powders and blend on low until mixed in. Enjoy all the vitamins and minerals in this cool, filling and sweet smoothie

ready to drink!

ready to drink!

 Catch up with Saturdays eats and adventures a bit later!

Love + greens, Cassandra

modern danceHello Ladies I am in the BEST mood! I had Modern Dance class tonight!!!! I have it every Thursday from 5:30-8:30pm….that’s right 3 hours of non-stop DANCING!!!!  I used to dance as a child and into my teens.  It is a passion of mine.  This semester I needed to add just one more unit to my class load, I thought Modern Dance I am soooo there!

I really love my teacher, she is a hoot! Straight out of Flashdance.  We do an hour of warm ups- typically ballet style then stretches, and fun free expressions across the floor.  We also run around the room and make shapes with partners. Hehe- there a few boys in the class and I get kinda nervous touching them- I am such a 4th grader sometimes!  My teacher incorperates lot of  Martha Graham-esq movements.  I LOVE IT!  We are learning a routine too, so that basically makes up our class.  I leave drenched in sweat  and my arms get a really good workout

I was especially sore today from last nights yoga class!!!! I went to the gym to “burn some steam”.  I did 20 min on the Stairclimber while reading the new Los Angeles Magazine that featured the “Best Urban Farming Guru’s”   I am really interested in growing my own fruits and veggies! I would love to live on a farm, have a simple life of feeding chickens, gardening and having my OWN practice ( ie: not work in a hospital like most RD’s do).  But I am getting a bit carried away…so… back to the gym:) 

Lucky me there was a yoga class with one of my fave instructors at the Y, Kaitlyn, so I knew I was in for a treat!  She is not the hardest or the most calming of teachers, but there is something I really like about her classes.  I can’t put my finger on it.  It is just your basic yoga really; she starts with a slow build of Sun Salutations into a full flow about a hundred times!  My arms are pretty pathetic. I can never do that many Planks to Sticks or push ups, my arms start to shake all over when I am lowering my self down, and usually I end up belly flopping and going straight into Cobra.  Alas, I love the class.  She has us do a bit of everything: balancing, standing poses, floor work and then of course Shivasyna-resting pose- THE BEST!  I try to clear my head and make room for positive vibes.

So I know I promised some Humus meals, and I did have some today, but my BF needed the camera again today so they will have to wait.  Sorry if you were holding your breath. LOL.  But instead I can show you some of my Blackberry Crap-berry pics.  I had the lovely new bar I got at WF yesterday for my mid-morning snackie.

Sun Valley Bar

Sun Valley Bar

I know this pic is blurrraaay sorry, bar was really good though.  This is the Goji Lemon flavor.  Yummy! Very lemony in a zesty type way.  Nice oaty toasty flavor too. Not artificial tasting at all! No surprise there, here are the ingrediants:

Sun Valley Bar-Goji Lemon

  • Organic Oats
  • Brown Rice Syrup
  • Almond Butter 🙂
  • Brown Rice Flour
  • Organic Maple Syrup
  • Pumpkin Seeds
  • Date Paste
  • Almonds, Walnuts
  • Apples
  • Organic Goji Berries
  • Organic Ground Flaxseed
  • Organic Sesame Seeds
  • Soy protein
  • Soy Lecithin
  • Natural Lemon flavor
  • Sea Salt

Hey not bad huh?  I found the texture SPOT ON as far as bars go for me.   The only downside was it left me a bit thirsty…maybe the salt.  But I will for sure get this bar again.  Not only was it under $2.00, but it kept me satiated until well past noon.  The WF had 2 flavors of this brand.  I can not recal the other, but I am curious.

Lunch today was the one and only Green Peas Raw Kale Salad- Cassandra stylewith Teryaki Tofu.

Green Peas Raw Kale Salad

Green Peas Raw Kale Salad

Once again sorry for the poopy pic.  This was a glorious lunch, this salad never fails to satisfy!

For dinner I went light with some humus (pics and recipe coming soon) and raw veggies with a GREEN JUICE!!!! The ladies at Pur 2 Raw are diving into a 7 day cleanse.  I have no space in my schedule now for a juice fast or feast of any kind.  Those cleanses take a lot of planning for me to stick to them.  But that doesn’t mean I can’t bust out my ol’ Champion Jucier and get some greens in!!!

 

pretty tye-dye colors

pretty tye-dye colors

aftermath of pulverising

aftermath of pulverizing

In this Juice:

  • 1 red delicious apple
  • head of roamain heart
  • 1/2 full stalk of celery
  • 2 lemons
  • 2 carrots
  • 1/2 english cucumber

This list made A LOTof juice.  So I went against all fresh juicing rules and mason jarred half and stuck it in the fridge for tomorrow.  I know I know…”but the quality of vitamins and minerals in juice is lost like that”. But hey better some 12 hour old juice than none at all RIGHT?

 

Ok lovelies I must get some beauty rest!!! I have a quiz tomorrow and then off to work, so I will be back on the weekend to fill you in on the happs.

Love +dancing, Cassandra

Helloooo!!!

I had a very organized day planned.  “Had” being the operative word!  On Wednesdays I am in school from 7:30 am-2:30pm.  My first class actually starts at 9:30am, but the parking situation at school is such a disasterthat it forces me to get there 2 hours early!  Crazy, but I am getting used to having the last minute studying sesh in the car (it has saved me a few times). 

Usually I sit with the windows down and the sun roof open, the morning ocean breeze flowing on my face.  Looking towards the football field and drooling over the early birds working-out, wishing I still had enough time in the morning to do the 5am gig.I just don’t forsee waking up at 4am to eat breakies, drive to the YMCA (my gym) and then home again to shower and drive past the Y to go to school or work.  I need fuel before a work out, I mean hello my blog is called “Starting off Hungry” for a good reason!  And the sleep deprivation is not worth the guaranteed work out for the day.  Sadly, this semester has had quite a few less work outs than last semester.  I know you can’t blame your schedule, so many of you find the time in the day to hit the gym, do a quick podcast of yoga or run around the block.  I am planning to get back on the horse soon. 

Instead of getting going on my TO DO list after school, I went to Whole Foods instead!!! I can’t decide which one I am most keen on; Santa Monica off 3rd, West Hollywood off Fairfax, or the new on in Venice on Lincoln.  Oh I love them all!  So far the one on Lincoln has the best and largest Raw and Gluten-Free selection.  I am not Gluten- Free but I am researching the concept.  So far I have heard great things for mood and bloating on a GF diet.  Not sure it’s for me though.  At WF I picked up a few new things:

 

Finally found Oat Groats, and never tried WG Amaranth!

Finally found Oat Groats, and never tried WG Amaranth!

Have you guys tried these?

Have you guys tried these?

The best! It smells of Honey and Chamomile..mmm..

The best! It smells of Honey and Chamomile..mmm..

 

Last night I made my first Humus!  It was adapted from a recipe at Gone Raw and was super! I always change up a recipe, even when I am baking and you are supposed to be all exact.  I will post my version tomorrow, because today I am bringing you RAW HALVA!!!! I just adore Halva.  I have since I was little and my mom used to drive me to the Mediterranean Super Market to buy this delicious treat!

Ooooo...ahhhhh....

Ooooo...ahhhhh....

So let’s get to know HALVA-

The word halva entered the English language as “halva” between 1840-50 from the Yiddish halva, which came from Romanian, which came from the Turkish helva, which ultimately was derived from the Arabic Ar ḥalwā, meaning sweet confection. (Thanks to Wiki)

Originally Halva (or halawa, halaweh, ħelwa, halvah, halava, helva, halwa, aluva) is from Middle East, Central Asia, South Asia, the Balkans, and the Jewish World.  It is usually either flour-based or nut-based.  The one I grew up enjoying is the nut-based kind.  This type of halva is crumbly and usually made from Tahini (sesame paste) or other nut butters, such as sunflower seed butter. The primary ingredients are nut-butter and sugar or honey. 

Well ladies, I have been so excited to try this for myself! I mean really how simple are 2 ingredients and soooo tasty!  I jazzed mine up a bit~

 

up close, delish!

 

Raw Chocolate- Coconut Halva

– 1/2 C of raw sunflower seeds- soaked for 1-2 hours, rinsed and drained

– 1 tsp raw Honey-or any sweetener Agave would work great

– ½ C raw hulled sesame seeds

– 1 Tbsp Coconut Oil

– ½ – 1 Tbsp raw Cocoa Powder

Mix in High speed blender on low, by hand or in food processor until well combined but still a bit chunky.

(I don’t have a fancy blender or food processor.  I used my crappy blender and when it was no longer “blending” I scraped it out and mixed by hand. Hints are dropped to the BF all the time about my B-Day coming up soon)

Spread on un-greased sheet pan to about ½ Inch thick.  Score to desired shape and size with back of knife.  Place in Freezer for 2-3 hours and then cut with butter knife and EAT!!!

I let mine sit over night in the freeze and then devoured these little tasty morsels. This recipe makes 12-14 pieces.  I had 3!!

You can eat them as a sweet and healthy snack. On top of the famous Banana Soft Serve, crumbled on Oatmeal, crumbled on fresh fruit, or dusted with Cocoa powder for a decadent dessert!  You could add as many or as few ingredients to this! I am sure some Medjool dates would be delish!

I am off to the gym! HA already getting one foot in the sturup (is that even an expression?)  I guess my day is turning out better than I thought!

Love + Halva, Cassandra

Hello Bloggeretts!

It seems to be one of those days…weeks (wait it’s totally Tuesday)when I need a boost to get me going.  Bad week to try to cut back on caffeine.  I decided this only because the mid-day headaches and afternoon “coffee crashes” were really starting to get to me.  I was drinking 2 or 3 cups a day and then having a REALLY hard time falling asleep at night.  So I am just challenging myself.  LOVE me a CHALLENGE!

I went to work today, I work at a very vegan friendly, Organic, Free- range, Pesticide + Hormone + Nirtate FREE restaurant, awesome right!  It has only been open for 3 months, and so far we are getting RAVE reviews at places like Happy Cow, Quarry Girl and Yelp!  I always get the same thing there and I bring my FREE lunch home at 2 or 3pm (I know it is really late for lunch). 

Today (as usual) I had the “Raw Kale Salad” and I always add the “Teryaki Tofu” cause it’s soooo gooood! Sorry there is no picture, my BF needed my camera for work today.  I tried taking a pic on my Blackberry but it was miserable.I get the salad ALL the time so you will for sure see it again!

The salad includes:

– Raw Kale-probably one small bunch

– Dried Cranberries

– Raisins

– Sliced Tomato

– Chopped Almonds

– Lemon Dressing-fresh squeezed lemons, olive oil, s+p all emulsified= delish!

– Teryaki Tofu-the cooks will NOT give me the recipe, but if I had to guess it would be Shoyu (soy sauce), Black and White Sesame seeds, Olive oil, and LOVE!!! They bake the marinated tofu and serve it warm-mmmmmm….

I am always starving by the time I get to eat! I have breakies at 5:45 or 6:00 am every morning and by noon I am famished!  I used to be one of those “I must eat every 2 hours” kinda girls, but working for 7 hours with no snack break has trained my stomach and brain, otherwise.  I am not sure which way of eating is better.  I think everyday is different and there really is NO set of rules.  I say just eat healthful and mindful when you are hungry and don’t if your not, I don’t always follow my advice:)

I say “this is a perfect day for farming ” because the weather feels sooo nice now.  I just want to put on some rain boots and gardening gloves and get dirty in the garden (in my head, cause I don’t have a garden here in my apartment).  Lucky for me today is Tuesday, and that means it’s the FARMER”S MARKET!!!!! Pretty strange that my local FM falls on a Tues. By local I mean the absolute closest, because in LA there are hundreds of Farmer’s Markets.  But I love it because 1) it is not crazy crowded and 2) they are open from early morning to late in the evening.  As far as I know it is the only night-time farmers market open (correct me if I am wrong).  I love the original LA Farmers Market! There are always celebs there and The Grove is attatched, best for all sorts of shopping!

So I am off to walk to the FM, I think it is about a 40 min in total there and back, not including the browsing.  On my list is:

– Zucchini-for a humus recipe I have been dying to try from this site.

– Fresh Fruit

– Flowers

Ahhhh- I just LOVE Fall!

Ok, I am off~ Hope you all are having a wonder-FALL afternoon!

Love, Cassandra

Hellooooo bloggers!!!

You might know me www.theplatedecorator.blogspot.com .  If so, I’M BACK! If not, thanks for stopping by!  You can find out more about me here https://startingoffhungry.wordpress.com/about. I really need to find out how to hide links in my words (maybe you can let me know how in the comments?)  This blog is going to be an adventure!!! I am really excited to be back in the blogosphere and back with y’all! I am refocusing my blog to a more of a diary for me to log my path to becoming an RD. This is also a “whatever is health related and on my mind” blog, rather than a daily (or twice a day) flog.  Although of course there will be LOTS of food here! I will post recipes and experiments of all my new eats!!!

My eating hasn’t changed much from The Plate Decorator.  But I am eating much less meat, almost none, and much less dairy, hardly ever.  My wine drinking days are now few and far between.  I think I really over did it in spain, you can see some posts here: http://theplatedecorator.blogspot.com/search/label/spain .

The biggest change in my diet is the focus on RAW foods!!!! I have really enjoyed all the benefits of eating more living foods.  My digestive system is still working out all the kinks, but at least it is WORKING!!!! More on that later I love the support of the blogging community and can not wait to hear from everyone again!  Please come back and check out what I have in store!

Love, Cassandra