Wednesday, December 2, 2009

A healthy brownie?!

It is true! Dust off your food processor and blend the following:

-10 Medjool dates, pits removed
-1 cup of raw pecans
-1/4 cup of raw cacao (not a typo )
-vanilla bean powder, or a splash of vanilla extract will do the trick

Roll the mixture into truffles as shown above or form into a brownie shape and let it set in the fridge for as long as you can handle. I often find myself eating the "dough" straight from the food processor! For a more professional presentation you can top with fresh berries and a dusting of cacao powder or shredded coconut.



Friday, November 20, 2009

Eating out has never been so good: Saf, London

It's been three days since eating at Saf Restaurant & Bar, but I still can't get it out of my head. This restaurant is a true revolution to dining out with a healthy conscious. It makes eating raw, vegetarian food feel like the norm with a hip vibe and chic decor. (Not to mention the amazing drink menu!) Saf has been quickly added to the top ten reasons of why I love London. Special thanks to my dear friends, Kate and Chris, for the introduction.

For all of you culinary keeners out there I have managed to track down a recipe by the head chef, Chad Sarno:

Beetroot Ravioli
With cashew-chive bourson cheese, green-garlic oil, and aged balsamic

1 large beet, sliced into paper-thin rounds
Green-garlic oil for the marinade (see recipe below)
Salt, to taste
Pepper, to taste
1/2 cup cashew-chive bourson cheese (see recipe below)
Aged balsamic for garnish
Green-garlic oil for garnish
Minced chives for garnish
Fresh cracked black pepper, to taste
Course sea salt, to taste

•Allow the sliced beets to marinate in the garlic oil, salt, and pepper for a minimum of 1 hour.

•Lay half of the sliced beets out. Scoop 1 tablespoon or so of the cashew cheese in the center of each and cover with another sliced beet to complete the ravioli.

•Place 6 ravioli in a line down the center of a rectangular plate. Finish each with aged balsamic, green-garlic oil, minced chives, cracked pepper, and a pinch of sea salt.

Makes 6 to 8 servings

Cashew-Chive Bourson

2 cups cashews, soaked for 12-14 hours
3/4 tsp. New Chapter Probiotics, dissolved in 1 cup warm filtered water or in 1 cup fresh "rejuvelac"
2 Tbsp. nutritional yeast
1/2 Tbsp. onion powder
1 1/2 Tbsp. finely diced chives
2 Tbsp. finely minced parsley
2 Tbsp. finely minced shallots
1 tsp. sea salt
Cracked black pepper

•In a high-speed blender, blend the soaked cashews with the probiotics and water or rejuvelac until smooth.

•Allow to sit in a glass bowl covered with a towel in warm place for 14 to 16 hours in order to culture.

•When finished culturing, mix in the remaining ingredients by hand and serve.

Green-Garlic Oil

1 cup fresh chives
1/2 cup chopped parsley
2 cups organic grapeseed or mild organic olive oil
Pinch of sea salt
3 Tbsp. coarsely chopped young garlic

•In a high-speed blender, blend the chives, parsley, oil, and sea salt well.

•Pour the mixture through a fine-mesh strainer or chinoise, slowly stirring out the oil. Discard the pulp, or use in another recipe.

•Toss the chopped garlic in the "chive oil" and let sit for 1 day to infuse.

The next time you find yourself in London, be certain to check out this delicious dining experience:

Here's to your health,


Monday, November 2, 2009


The castor bean (Oleum ricini), also known as Palma Christi due to its leaf shape and healing properties, acts as a cathartic (strong laxative) when taken internally. A gentler use is in the form of a pack placed over the abdomen, usually with heat applied. The oil is absorbed into the lymphatic circulation to provide a soothing, cleansing, and nutritive treatment, which stimulates immune function and tonifies internal organs.

The castor oil pack has many applications including the following: headaches, liver disorders, constipation, diarrhea, intestinal disorders, gallbladder inflammation or stones, conditions with poor elimination, night-time urinary frequency, inflammed or sprained joints, acne and skin disorders, as well as uterine fibroids and ovarian cysts that are non malignant. It is especially useful for general detoxification. Doing regular castor oil pack treatments is one of the most important lifestyle changes you can make to increase your body’s ability to heal itself.
Extremely sensitive clents, such as those with multiple chemical sensitivities, may experience an increase in their symptoms. If this happens, it is necessary to reduce the length of time for doing the castor oil pack (COP). Be certain to contact the office if you have questions about the length of time you should use the COP.

Materials Needed:
• Castor oil (ideally in a glass bottle – any oil will leach hormone-disrupting chemicals, such as dioxins and phthalates, from the plastic)
• cotton flannel cloth OR old facecloth/towel – large enough to cover your abdomen
• hot water bottle or heating pad
• plastic grocery bag (turned inside out so ink does not leak) or garbage bag – just slightly larger than cloth
• spare towel (optional)
• warm blanket (optional)

1. Place flannel on a plate and drizzle with the castor oil until saturated. You may need to let it sit for a few minutes to distribute the oil throughout the flannel. It should not be dripping wet.

2. Place flannel over entire abdomen – so just beneath the rib-cage to just above pubic area. If you have fibrocystic breasts or chronic lung disease you may also cover this area with the caster oil pack, basically from the pubic bone to the collarbone.

3. Cover with the plastic bag, then place heating pad (low heat) or hot water bottle over top of the bag. You may want to cover pack with an old towel if you want to extra protection for your sheets. You may also want to wrap up in a warm blanket, robe or cozy bed.

4. Leave pack on for 45 60 minutes. This is an excellent time to now practice visualization, mediation or relaxation breathing. Alternatively you may just sleep, read or watch T.V. Some people will wear the pack all night using an ace bandage to hold it in place.

5. After finishing, you can leave the oil on the skin to be absorbed, wipe off with an old towel, or remove the oil with with the following solution: 2 tablespoons of baking soda to 2 cups water .

6. Store the pack in a large zip lock bag or tupperware and either refrigerate or keep at room temperature. The pack is meant to be reused for several weeks, simply add more oil as needed to keep the pack saturated. Replace the pack after it begins to change color (1 –2 months).

7. For maximum effectiveness, it is necessary to apply the pack as often as possible, preferably every day. Or try for a minimum of at least 4 consecutive days per week for a minimum of at least 4 6 weeks. Patients who use the pack daily will receive the most beneficial effects. (Research has shown that using the castor oil pack for 4 consecutive days will boost the immune system 60%!)

CAUTION: Do not heat the pack or use topical heat in the following situations:
• over a pregnant abdomen as it may stimulate uterine contractions
• over a suspected or known cancerous tumor as the heat will increase blood flow


• increases intestinal eliminations (mild laxative) and releases colon impaction
• stimulates the liver and gallbladder and therefore improves detoxification
• reduces swelling and inflammation, relieves pain
• dissolves and removes adhesions and lesions as well as benign tumors and growths
• stimulates the immune system within the intestine (30% of our immune system is in the gut!!)
• increases lymphatic circulation
• increases relaxtion (especially within the nerve plexus of the diaphragm)
• stimulates and repairs organs and glands

Enjoy adding this tool to your healthy new routine!

Healthy and happiness,

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Recommended Dietary and Lifestyle Modifications to Support Our Immune Systems

• Frequent hand washing at work and at home (warm water with soap works best.) 15 seconds at the very least, please!
• Sneeze into your forearm or tissue – NOT into your hands, I beg of you!
• Minimize foods that weaken your immune system defenses such as: refined foods, white flour and sugar products.
• Focus on whole, fresh foods such as: vegetables, fruit, whole grains, beans and lentils, whole grain flour and natural sweeteners like local honey, yacon syrup, agave and green leaf stevia.
• Stay hydrated with water and herbal teas. Target ½ your body weight in ounces (i.e. 180 pound
person would drink 90 ounces, or 3 liters per day.) NOTE: Unfortunately, for all of you coffee lovers our there coffee, caffeinated beverages and pop do not count as part of the daily quota.
• Exercise. Mild to moderate exercise 3 – 5 days a week will strengthen your immune system.
• Stay at home if you have flu symptoms such as chills and cough followed by fever, loss of appetite, muscle aches, fatigue, runny nose, sneezing, watery eyes and throat irritation.

Have a healthy and happy day!