Thursday, October 30, 2014

Harvest Juice Initiative: Three Delicious Fall Juicing Recipes


Several weeks ago, Williams-Sonoma approached me to collaborate on a post about juicing recipes.  I thought it sounded fun and decided to jump back on the juicing train.  (I'm hot and cold with juicing.  Mostly because my kitchen is tiny and I don't really have space to leave the juicer up on the counter at all times.  And as the saying goes, out of sight, out of mind.)  So I pulled my juicer back out of the closet and decided to get creative with tasty ingredients.




My first idea was to make a savory juice.  Something that could be enjoyed fresh from the juicer but could also be heated into a comforting soup on a cold fall day.  I also wanted this juice to be entirely homegrown from my very own garden.  I wanted to highlight that juicing can done for pennies (growing plants from seeds is incredibly inexpensive) and can be enjoyed outside of a sweet breakfast treat.  I grew and harvested all of the ingredients in the following recipe.




Savory Tomato Basil Juice / Soup

Ingredients:
* Tomatoes (I used one small and one large)
* Basil (I used 10 leaves)
* Swiss Chard (I used 10 baby leaves or one large leaf.  Kale could be substituted here.)
* Celery (I used one small stalk)
* Sweet Pepper (I used one tiny pepper or 1/4 large pepper)




Directions:
* When I juice leafy greens, I place them in the juicer under something heavier like the tomatoes to ensure they get juiced.
* Run all of your veggies through the juicer.  Stir with a spoon and enjoy.
* To turn it from juice to soup, heat in microwave.  Add salt and pepper if desired (I didn't think it needed it though).

The Results:
So delicious!  I will use this recipe over and over again- both chilled and heated as a soup.  It's a keeper for sure!


My second idea was to make a delightful sweet juice that tasted like fall.  I decided to use fresh cranberries and ginger to really bring out that special fall flavor.  Pineapple happened to be on sale.  It's certainly not seasonal or local, I fully admit.  But I decided that it might be a fun flavor combination to add to the mix.




Perfect Sweet Fall Juice

Ingredients:
* 1 Pear
* 1/2 med. Apple
* Ginger (1 - 2 small chunks depending on taste)
* 1/4 cup Fresh Cranberries
* Fresh Pineapple (I used @ 1/5)




Directions:
* Start with the smaller fruits (cranberries and ginger).  Juice all ingredients.  Stir with spoon to combine.
* Enjoy as is or combine with sparkling water for a fresh, fizzy treat.

The Results:
Yum!  This juice not only looked stunning, but also tasted incredible too!  If you are not a big ginger lover, add only a tiny amount.  I can't get enough ginger though so I added quite a bit.  As Sheldon Cooper would say, it's zingy!


Extra Sweet Juice

Ingredients:
* 1 med Apple
* 1/4 Fresh Pineapple

Directions:
* Juice fruit.  Add ice.  Call it desert!

The Results:
Do you even need a review?  Of course it's amazing!  This came about because I had extra ingredients sitting right there.  It's definitely a sweet treat though.  Mmmm good!


I had a lot of fun with this post.  I really wanted to make one recipe entirely from my garden, even though it's the tail end of the season (we're expecting snow flakes this coming weekend...so I should probably come to terms with garden season actually being over).  And I really wanted a second recipe that tasted like a fall treat.  I feel like I accomplished both of my goals, as well as reminded myself how much I really do love juicing.  It's so amazing to get a huge quantity of fresh fruits and vegetables into your body with very little effort.  Williams-Sonoma has a huge selection of great juicers and juicing tools if you don't have one you're in love with already.  While I do like my juicer, WS has the best of the best to pick from (and many are currently on sale!).

And as an added bonus, I saved all of the pulp and waste to add to my garden compost.  Nothing goes to waste!

I know some of y'all juice regularly too.  Do you have any fall favorite recipes to share?  Have you ever made a savory juice and turned it into a soup?  

*I was not compensated in any way for this post.*

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Misty Water Colored Memories



I'm not sure why this popped into my head the other night but it hit me that July 03rd (as in a few weeks ago) marks 20 years since I last had an even remotely decent relationship with my mother.

I never had a great relationship with her- at least not beyond age five or six.  But it exploded and severed in the Miami airport on July 03.  I left her house on July 04 to go back to my dad's house (where I already lived 75% of the time) permanently.  My dad had forced me to keep my relationship with her until that point but things just broke down beyond repair and everything changed that night.

I do have a point here...I promise.

So as I was thinking about this, I paused to remember when I finally did see my mother again (because our relationship, like all bad relationships, would have a few, brief attempts to reconcile in the following years).  I can't for the life of me remember.  Was it around the holidays of that year?  I honest to goodness have no memory of when we would reconcile.  I seem to remember going six months without speaking to her and I would assume more months before seeing her.  But that's totally a guess.

So my point is this...

I can remember my house in DC when I was 2.5 years old.  I remember the day my dad drove up in the green Volvo station wagon with our beloved family dog to our new house in Florida from DC.  I remember more mundane things too from the same early ages.  Like the conversation I had, verbatim, at my fourth birthday party with my Aunt Susan.  Or what the neighbor gave me as a gift.  Or every silly detail about my bedroom that I had until age seven.  I can even tell you all about preschool and kindergarten.

But I cannot bring up a memory of seeing my mother between July of 1994 and April of 1996.  Not one.  I know I eventually saw her on occasion.  But I don't think I spent time at her house or with her husband.  Though that's more of a guess than anything because I have no memories at all!

And it's bugging the heck out of me.

Not because I need to know for any specific reason.  But my memories are so clear about so many things.  I don't like the idea of forgetting.  What if a miracle happens and I do eventually get to become a mother?  I want to be able to tell my kid my childhood stories, just as my parents and grandparents did for me.

I am not sure if this means I am old, that God only gives you the important memories (even if you don't yet know why it's important to remember a conversation at your fourth birthday party), or if it simply doesn't matter after two decades.  

Anyway, this is really just a long way for me to tell you that I'm suddenly nervous I'm losing my marbles.  Yet another thing for me to quietly obsess over.

Oh and the birthday party conversation.  Want to know what I discussed with Aunt Susan 32 years ago?  I told her that I was officially an adult that day (you know...on my fourth birthday).  I was super serious and absolutely meant it, too.  Looking back, I stand by that statement.  I think I was born an adult and have finally grown into my own personality.

Friday, June 27, 2014

Blogging, Instagram And Brandi Carlile

Well so far I am doing a crappy job of blogging again.  Give me the month of July to still be hit or miss and I should be back at it again in full force.  I've really missed keeping up with everyone.  Though I will say that my new lover, Instagram, is filling the void and likely a big reason I am blogging less.  (If you are waiting with baited breath- all three of you- for my gardening posts, I promise to get them blogged eventually as this is my journal to remember life over the years.  But you can also catch me on Instagram because I post about the garden almost daily.)

In the mean time, here's my new favorite tune that I just can't get out of my head.  The Eye by Brandi Carlile and The Twins.




I first heard Brandi Carlile play as the opening act at an Indigo Girls concert ages ago.  I remember so clearly because I didn't go in for most of the opening act.  Finally I wandered in for the last two songs, was blown away, and had the conversation in my head that I would never skip another opening act again.  I became a fan right then and there during the last two songs of her set.  Her voice never fails to amaze me.  Seriously...she could read me the ingredient list off the cereal box and I would be enthralled.

Brandi and the band are playing Red Rocks next year.  I might need to use that as my excuse to get out to see Katie and Riley!


Friday, June 20, 2014

I'm Expecting!

Friends. First I owe an explanation of why I abandoned le blog. And the answer is thrilling. 

Ready?  

Just Because.  That's my reason. Honestly. I've just been sidetracked. 

But I'm ready to jump back in. 

So here's my big exciting news...

I'm expecting. 

My first tomato of the season, that is. I about fell over when I found it yesterday. 




This is also serving as my test run at blogging from my iphone. So I'm keeping it brief. But I'm ready to read your blogs and chatter away on here again. I've missed everyone!  

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