Sunday, October 25, 2009

October 25, 2009

Banana Berry Smoothie

makes one serving ~ $1.19 per serving
2 bananas, 1 inch pieces, frozen ($.20)
6 oz strawberries, frozen ($.59)
1 cup almond milk ($.40)
Put all ingredients in blender and puree until smooth. The frozen fruit has a tendency to stick together and become difficult to blend when it's too cold, so let it sit out at room temperature for 5-10 minutes before blending.

calories: 371
fat: 9 gr
carbs: 77 gr
protein: 5 gr
Zucchini Hummus with Cucumbers

makes two servings ~ $1.71 per serving
1/4 cup tahini ($1.38)
1 medium zucchini, peeled and cubed ($.59)
1 small onion, coarsely chopped ($.10)
1 tbsp olive oil ($.05)
2 cloves garlic, pressed ($.05)
juice of 1/2 lemon ($.25)
1 tsp curry powder ($.10)
1 tsp paprika ($.05)
3/4 tsp salt

Peel and cube zucchini. Generally, peels are good, but not for this recipe. Mince or press the garlic and chop the onion to make things go a bit smoother in the food processor. Add all ingredients to food processor and blend until creamy and smooth. It may take a few minutes of blending as well as scraping down the sides. Adjust seasonings to taste.
Serve on cucumber slices (one cucumber per person, $.45 ea) and garnish with minced cucumber and a sprinkle of paprika.

calories: 270
fat: 27 gr
carbs: 15 gr
protein: 8 grDinner
Waldorf Salad
makes two large servings ~ $2.67 per serving


1 head romaine ($1.29)
1 large apple ($.60)
6 oz grapes ($.79)
3 ribs celery ($.15)
1 oz walnuts ($.63)

avocado mayonaise:
1 ripe avocado ($1.49)
1/2 cup nut milk ($.20)
1 tbsp agave ($.15)
1 tsp mustard ($.05)
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp apple cider vinegar ($.05)
1/2 tsp onion powder ($.05)
1/2 tsp garlic powder ($.05)

calories: 460
fat: 28 gr
carbs: 54 gr
protein: 5 gr
Baklava Yumpot
makes one serving ~ $.37 per serving

1/2 oz walnuts (7 halves) ($.32)
1 tsp agave ($.05)
pinch of salt
pinch of cinnamon

Chop walnuts and mix with honey, salt and cinnamon.
Baklava is one of my favorite cooked deserts, but I don't miss it when I can have this.
calories: 114
fat: 9 gr
carbs: 8 gr
protein: 2 gr

Total cost for the day: $5.94
total calories: 1,215
total fat: 73 gr
total carb: 154 gr
total protein: 20 gr

Sunday, October 18, 2009

October 18, 2009

Green Smoothie
makes one serving ~ $1.37 per serving
6 oz spinach ($.70)
6 leaves romaine ($.15)
1 banana, frozen ($.10)
4 oz mango chunks, frozen ($.42)
water to blend

In a blender, add spinach, romaine, and enough water for blending (about a half cup). Puree until smooth and then add the frozen mango and banana and puree. Blending the greens first will help achieve a smoother consistency if, like me, you haven’t gotten around to getting a Vitamix yet.

Just a note about blenders … It’s really not necessary to have a $500 blender to make smoothies, although I agree that good equipment can make anything easier. This is what I use …

It’s a regular blender base that I’ve had for at least 6 years, and lately I’ve been using a canning jar as a carafe. I’ve broken and replaced the carafe several times and find the 24 oz size of a quart jar is the perfect size for making one or two servings of just about anything. And, knock wood, it’s stood up to some pretty heavy demands. Go easy on your blender by pulsing when the going gets tough.

nutritional information:
calories: 222
fat: 0 gr

carbs: 53 gr
protein: 7 gr

Fruit and Nut Bowl

makes one serving ~ $1.16 per serving
1 banana ($.10)
2 oz strawberries ($.27)
2 oz blueberries ($.27)
1/2 oz walnuts, chopped ($.32)
1/2 cup almond milk ($.20)

Slice bananas into bowl, add whole strawberries and blueberries, top with the chopped walnuts and pour the almond milk over. It’s like an incredibly fresh, living bowl of “cereal.”

nutritional information:
calories: 299
fat: 14 gr

carbs: 38 gr
protein: 4 gr

Romaine Wrap Ups with Sweet Mustard
makes four wrap ups (which is one large serving) ~ $3.14 per serving
4 leaves romaine ($.10)
1 cucumber ($.80)
1 carrot ($.10)
1 avocado ($1.49)
2 tbsp raw agave ($.30)
1 small onion, chopped ($.15)
1 cup mung bean sprouts ($.10)
1 tsp mustard powder or 1 tbsp prepared mustard (.10)
salt and pepper (to taste … about 1/4 tsp each)

Mix agave, mustard, salt and pepper and set aside. Chop cucumber into sticks, shave carrot curls with a vegetable peeler, slice avocado into strips. Divide all equally between the romaine leaves, drizzle with the sweet mustard sauce and wrap up. These are juicy and messy, but oh so delish.

Sprouting is an easy and inexpensive way to get really fresh goodies to add to raw dishes. Here is a good site with basic “sprouting 101” info … I’ve found that I can’t slack off at all on the rinsing or they’ll start to get a little fermented smelling (especially wheat berries). Sprouts should always smell pristinely fresh and never “off” in any way … discard any that do.

nutritional information:

calories: 578

fat: 29
carbs: 77 gr

protein: 1 gr


makes one serving ~ $1.79 per serving
1 medium zucchini, grated ($.59)
1 tomato, chopped ($.70)
1 onion, chopped ($.15)
1 clove garlic, finely minced ($.05)
1 tbsp olive oil ($.20)
1 tsp basil ($.10)
salt and pepper

Grate zucchini. I used a food processor with the grating blade. Place grated zucchini in middle of plate and top with the tomato, onion, and garlic. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with basil, salt and pepper.
Part of the fun of raw foods is making new things and then thinking up a “raw” name for them. This is a fairly hearty dinner meal I’ve enjoyed often from the beginning (I discovered the idea of raw foods on Storm and Jingee's Garden Diet website). I can’t remember what cooked dish I was trying to recreate or exactly how I arrived at the name, but it had something to do with grating the zucchini

nutritional information:
calories: 211
fat: 14 gr
carbs: 21 gr
protein: 5 gr

Soft Serve Chocolate Ice Cream
makes one large serving ~ $.95 per serving
2 bananas, frozen ($.20)
1 cup nut milk ($.40)
2 tbsp powdered rawcocao (or cocoa powder) ($.20)
1/2 tsp vanilla ($.15)
1/2 tsp salt

Break frozen bananas into pieces. Puree until smooth in blender with the nut milk, cocao powder, vanilla and salt. This will have the consistency of a very thick chocolate shake or pretty loose soft serve ice cream. Pop into the freezer for an hour or so to firm up, if desired.

nutritional information:
calories: 320

fat: 10 gr
carbs: 54 gr
protein: 4 gr

Total cost for the day: $9.01
total calories: 1,630
total fat: 67 gr
total carb: 243 gr
total protein: 30 gr

Sunday, October 11, 2009

October 11, 2009

Caramel Apple Breakfast Bowl
makes 1 serving ~ cost per serving: $1.62


1 Apple ($.75)
1/2 oz Nuts ($.32)
1 tbsp Almond Butter ($.40)
1 tbsp Raw Agave ($.15)

This is easy peasy and just like having a caramel apple for breakfast. Chop a nice, juicy apple into bite sized chunks. I used a medium Honey Crisp. Blend together the agave and nut butter. Sprinkle the nuts (I used walnuts, pecans and almonds) over the apple chunks and then dollop with the nut butter/agave mixture.

nutritional information:

calories: 340
fat: 17 gr
carb: 42 gr
protein: 4 gr

Super Salad with Mango-Tomato Dressing

Mango-Tomato Dressing
makes 2 servings ~ cost per serving: $.77


1 Tomato ($.75)
4 oz Mango (I used frozen chunks, thawed) (.50)
1/2 tsp Paprika ($.05)
1/2 tsp Onion Powder ($.05)
1/2 tsp Garlic Powder ($.05)
1 tbsp Agave ($.15)

This dressing is really simple, and is sweet, light, and a bit tangy ... I started making it as a substitute for French dressing. Use a blender to mix up the tomato, mango, spices and agave. The juice from the tomato is usually enough liquid to make blending go smoothly.

Greens, eaten as salad especially, usually make up a big part of any raw fooder's diet. I know it does mine. Make this for lunch and have plenty left over for another serving at dinner.

Super Salad
makes 4 servings ~ cost per serving: $1.18

My ideal salad is one head Romaine lettuce ($1.29), 1 tomato ($.75), 4 oz. fresh mushrooms ($.75), 1 cup celery chunks ($.25), 1 avocado ($1.49) and chopped onions ($.25).

nutritional information:

super salad (per serving):
calories: 143
fat: 8 gr
carbs: 17 gr
protein: 6 gr

dressing (per serving):
calories: 85
fat: 0
carbs: 21 g
protein: 2 gr

Corn Confetti (served w/super salad from lunch)
makes 4 servings ~ cost per serving: $.87


6 ears corn ($1.00)
2 tomatoes ($1.50)
1 green pepper ($.50)
1 onion ($.25)
1 jalepeno ($.10)
2 tbsp olive oil ($.15)

Cut corn from cobs with knife or corn cutter. Chop onions, tomatoes and green pepper. Finely diced the jalepeno. Mix together and drizzle with olive oil.

nutritional information (per serving):

calories: 280
fat: 40 gr
carbs: 65 gr
protein: 13 gr

Pumpkin Ice "Cream"

makes 2 servings ~ $.65 per serving

1 cup raw pumpkin chunks ($.10)
4 bananas ($.45)
1 cup nut milk ($.40)
1 cup carrot juice ($.10)
1 in piece ginger, peeled
2 tbsp raw agave ($.30)
1 tsp pumpkin pie spice ($.05)
1/2 tsp cinnamon ($.02)

Plan to make this at least a few hours ahead of time. Juice 3-4 carrots, plus piece of ginger, to make about 1 cup liquid. Add the carrot/ginger juice and pumpkin chunks to a blender and puree until smooth. Add bananas, nut milk, spices and agave. Puree until smooth. Process in an ice cream maker and then store in freezer, or pour into bowl and place in freezer, stirring every 20 minutes or so until firm.

nutritional information (per serving):

calories: 363
fat: 4 gr
carbs: 80 gr
protein: 3 gr

total cost for the day: $6.99
total calories: 1,459
total fat: 69 gr
total carb: 225
total protein: 28 gr

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Raw on $10 a day? Can it be done?

Taking on a raw foods lifestyle is a wonderful and exciting journey, but at times it can be challenging. It's a truly radical lifestyle change. Family and friends may think you're crazy, or at the very least "getting really weird about food." Navigating a social life while raw is always a test in food creativity as well as diplomacy. Then there are the sometimes tantalizing thoughts of cooked food which can be hard to resist. So as awesome as raw foods are, there are struggles involved. We're just not set up as a society to support raw foods yet, and that includes economically.

As a nation, we support the beef, dairy, egg, pork, wheat, corn and soybean industries with extensive government subsidies. This is why we can find 99 cent hamburgers on nearly every corner. Yeah, that's right, the fast food industry is on the dole. The result is those foods are relatively inexpensive and their prices, many times, don't reflect the true cost of those foods.

Subsidies for fresh produce are slim to none, so we generally must pay the actual cost of those items. And this is what has, in part, contributed to what I've found to be yet another challenge in sticking with a raw foods lifestyle.


It's true. A box of mac and cheese can cost less than a dollar, while a head of conventionally grown romaine lettuce is about $2.00, and organic often costs even more.

Obtaining the needed calories from raw fruits, vegetables, nuts and seeds, can sometimes mean consuming a large quantity of food. One of the reasons people lose weight on a raw diet is that raw fruits and vegetables are nutrient dense. Nutrient dense means a food contains a lot of nutrition per calorie. This is one of the biggest benefits of the raw food and living foods lifestyle. It can also make it more expensive than the Standard American Diet, which relies heavily on grains and animal products. For example, a pound of lettuce has far fewer calories than a box of mac and cheese. A comparison of the nutritional information for lettuce and mac and cheese will reveal lettuce to be the nutritional powerhouse. But at $1.50 - $2.00 per every 100 calories, lettuce is the caloric weakling.

What all that actually means is that I frequently feel guilty about how much I'm spending on what I eat. As well, sometimes my food budget just can't stretch to accommodate every raw food delicacy I might fancy.

Is it possible, I wondered, to eat raw while staying within a budget? Say, $10 a day (or less)?

Those are the parameters I've set for myself; $10 a day or less, to feed one adult an adequate, nutritious and appetizing raw food diet. And while $10 is the maximum, my goal is always to do it for less.

Once a week, I'll be posting a full day of raw foods, complete with recipes and nutritional information. I invite you to come along with me while I stay Raw on $10 a Day (or less!)


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