Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Homemade Almond Milk

For those of you who did the Against the Grain Challenge : Congratulations! I've received several messages containing success stories. I think everyone cheated a little here and there, but overall I've heard very good reports and some of you are even considering this as a lifestyle change, which is incredible! It's so very encouraging to see the lights come on for some of you, health-wise. Keep up the good work!

I wish I had a better report for myself. Still tapering off of prednisone, and after two very good months, I am back to a flare and all of the beautiful symptoms that accompany it. The timing couldn't be worse as G and I are packing up our home in DC and leaving next week to hopefully find a new home in NYC! I'm so beyond excited to be a New Yorker, but gracious I've gotta get better so I can enjoy it!

As with this entire journey, food is everything. I'm not eating much of it right now, but when I do I can only handle mild things and I find myself needing to use dairy of some kind here and there. Seeing as true dairy is out of the picture for now, I finally tried my hand at almond milk. It's surprisingly easy! Grab cheesecloth or a milk bag and get to work!

Almond Milk
makes about 2-3 cups

1 cup almonds
Blender or food processor

-Soak almonds in a generous amount of water overnight.
-Rinse almonds and place in a blender with 2 cups of water. Pulse until complete pulp 2-4 minutes.
-Strain through the cloth thoroughly. Store milk in the fridge for a few days and save the remaining almond meal for baking (dry it out first in a low oven like granola, then grind.) Sweeten to taste with honey.

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Coconut Beef Curry with Basil Lime "Rice"

Happy 4th Anniversary, little  blog!

Four years of experimental recipes and so many memories shared through food with the ones I love. This started out as a place to keep track of the things I make and to update friends and family on our newlywed adventures. These pages are full of trial, error, and many lessons learned in life and in the kitchen. Sometimes I think it's a silly thing to keep, but I'm glad to have all of the crazy recorded. Thanks for being on this journey with me, readers!

Wish I would have snapped a better picture of this dish. I have a horrible, glaring light in my kitchen and haven't set up a light box for food photography yet. So, if I make something in the evening, well, the picture ain't gonna be pretty! But rest assured that this is a super flavorful, healthy dish that you want to try. I can't handle too much heat these days because of my digestive system, so if you want to kick up the heat, add more red curry and less yellow!

Coconut Beef Curry
serves 4-6

1 tbs olive oil
2~ lbs ground beef
1 cup of chopped onion (1 large)
2 tbs freshly grated ginger
3 garlic cloves, minced
3 tbs yellow curry powder
1 tsp red curry paste (optional - or use more red and less yellow)
1 and 1/2 cups chicken broth
1 can coconut milk, unsweetened!
1 can diced tomatoes plus the juice
3/4 cup golden raisins
2 cups frozen peas

- Heat the oil in a large skillet and brown the beef over medium high heat. Add the onion, ginger, garlic, and curry powder and paste and season with a few pinches of salt and a dash of pepper. Stir frequently, toasting the spices, until the onion is softened, about 5 minutes. Add in the broth, coconut milk, tomatoes, raisin,s and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to a low simmer, stirring occasionally, and allow to do so for about 20 minutes. (prepare the cauliflower at this time.) Add in the peas and keep on low for another 10 minutes. Serve warm with rice, naan, or with the cauliflower rice recipe below! This stew tastes even better the next day!

Basil Lime Cauliflower "Rice"
serves 4-6 as a side

2 tbs olive oil
3 cups riced cauliflower
1 tsp turmeric (optional - I just add it in everything since it is an anti-inflammatory!)
1/2 c Thai basil, julienned
zest of one lime, and the juice for squeezing on the final product

- Heat the oil in a sauté pan over medium high heat and add in the cauliflower, stirring often to toast until soft, about 8-10 minutes or until desired softness is reached. Add in the turmeric if using, and stir in the basil and lime zest. Season with salt to taste, keeping in mind that the curry may add to the saltiness! Squeeze the lime juice over before serving alongside the curry.