Roasted Kobocha Squash Soup

Any squash can be used for this delicious creamy, and simple soup. Kobocha squash has got such a lovely, sweet but not too sweet taste that pairs perfectly with ginger. I picked a beauty up at the local farmer’s market this past weekend and roasted it and have been putting it in to many meals since. As a time saver, the squash can be roasted in advance. If the squash is already roasted, this soup literally takes 8 minutes start to finish. The roasting step may even be omitted and the squash simply peeled, cubed, and cooked along with the other vegetables. Roasting draws out the most flavors and brings the sweetness of the squash to life, but it is not a necessity.

roasted-kobocha-squash-soup

Roasted Kobocha Squash Soup

Wheat-Free, Gluten-Free

1 large onion, coarsely chopped

2 cloves garlic, minced

2c roasted Kobocha squash*

1/4t chipotle powder *optional

1 fresh jalapeño or cherry bomb pepper, chopped

1t cinnamon

1/4t nutmeg

3T coconut oil

6c boiling water

1 vege bouillon

1t salt or to taste

1/4-1/3c cashews

1″ piece of fresh ginger

1T raw agave

 

Bring 6c of water to a boil.

Roasting the Squash: Clean the outer shell of the squash with cold water and pat it dry well with a dishtowel or paper cloth. With a sharp knife, split the squash down the middle, creating two halves. Seed the squash using a large spoon, scraping the stringy flesh and seeds from the center. With the cleaned halves, rub with oil and salt. Place face down on a cookie sheet or roasting dish and place in the oven for 40-45 minutes or until the flesh of the squash is tender, yielding to the touch. Let cool. When cool enough to handle, scoop out the roasted squash.Place the cashews, ginger, agave and fresh hot pepper in a blender and set aside.

In a large soup pot, add the oil and sauté the onions and garlic until golden and soft and aromatic. Add the yellow squash, the boullion (or powder) and the salt. Continue to sauté until the squash softens and turns bright yellow- about 3-4 minutes.  Add the boiling water to cover. Bring to a rapid boil and reduce heat and simmer for 2-3 more minutes.

 —

In batches, in a blender or vitamix*, transfer the soup pot contents into the blender and puree the soup with the contents in the blender. Adjust the seasonings if needed.

*Caution: blending hot liquids can be extremely dangerous. Fill the blender only half way and proceed in batches if necessary.

Ellen’s No Bake Energy Balls

My sister Jill sent me an energy bar recipe and my other sister Karen was like- “Ellen, it’s OK for you to just follow a recipe, you don’t have to make it your own“…Ya…no, I really do. I made these with and without the protein powder- both delicious. You could make them with more raw, super antioxidant ingredients, like using raw cacao nibs in place of the chocolate chips, using  1/4c raw cacao powder in the dough, raw nut butter in place of the peanut butter etc…they are simple, quick and easy to make and great to have in the fridge for a quick snack before or after a workout or to get you to your next meal.

ellens-no-bake-energy-balls

1c (dry) gluten free oatmeal, 2/3 buzzed in a dry blender, 1/3 whole

2/3c + 1T dried desiccated coconut- reserve the 1T for later

1/2c peanut butter, chunky

1T chia seeds

1T hemp seeds

2T sesame seeds

1 scoop Raw Vegan Vanilla Protein Powder *optional

1/4c sprouted pumpkin seeds

1/4c crisped brown rice cereal *optional

1/2c vegan chocolate chips, buzzed in (the same) dry blender to a coarse meal with small chunks OR 1/2 raw cacao nibs

1/3c raw agave nectar

3T coconut oil

1/4t pink salt

Stir all ingredients together in a medium bowl until thoroughly mixed. Spread into a shallow square pan.Sprinkle with more coconut. Let chill in the refrigerator for at least one half hour before attempting to scoop and roll or cut.

Once chilled, using a small scoop or spoon, roll into balls OR cut into chunks. (Mine were about 1″ in diameter)

In a bowl, add the reserved coconut, toss the balls or chunks to coat.

Store in an airtight container and keep refrigerated for up to 1 week.

Makes about 20-25 balls or chunks.

Gingered(end of)Summer Squash Soup

So tasty!!!….I am still fighting this crud! I needed something warm and soothing for my throat, spicy enough to kill whatever’s left, and delicious enough to keep me happy. Sick all week meant there was only what was left after 10 days in the fridge and that was one lonely little Summer Squash and some cherry bombs…this soup came together SO QUICK…. Easily a new favorite irregardless of summer OR sickness.

Delicious.

gingered-summer-squash-soup

Gingered (end of) Summer Squash Soup

Wheat-Free, Gluten-Free

1 large onion, coarsely chopped

1 clove garlic, minced

1 large yellow summer squash

1/4t chipotle powder *optional

1 fresh jalapeño or cherry bomb pepper, chopped

1/2″ piece of fresh ginger

3T coconut oil

6c boiling water

2t raw agave

1 vege bouillon

1t salt or to taste

1/4c cashews

handful fresh parsley

Bring 6c of water to a boil.

Place the cashews, ginger, agave and parsley in a blender and set aside.

In a large soup pot, add the oil and sauté the onions and garlic until golden and soft and aromatic. Add the yellow squash, the boullion (or powder) and the salt. Continue to sauté until the squash softens and turns bright yellow- about 3-4 minutes.  Add the boiling water to cover. Bring to a rapid boil and reduce heat and simmer for 2-3 more minutes.

 —

In batches, in a blender or vitamix*, transfer the soup pot contents into the blender and puree the soup with the contents in the blender. Adjust the seasonings if needed.

*Caution: blending hot liquids can be extremely dangerous. Fill the blender only half way and proceed in batches if necessary.

Simple Turmeric Broth

broth

Simple Turmeric Broth for Vegetable Noodle Soup 2016

6c water

½ onion, coarsely chopped

2” fresh ginger, grated

1t turmeric

1t sesame oil

1t pink salt

Put everything in a pot, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 5-10 minutes.

Strain the broth through a fine mesh sieve into a large heatproof pitcher (I use my Vitamix container) or bowl. Discard the vegetables. Pour the broth back into the pot and then proceed to add fresh veggies, cooked rice noodles. This is the simplest, clear broth and it is just so easy and perfect for a pick me up or when you are not feeling full force to sip on.

Vegetable Noodle Soup

So ya I got.. SICK!…. like….NAILED! After 26 hours of Yoga Teacher Training that for me was a HUGE milestone ( my first TT ever)…I am now resting and eating simple foods. I have made this soup for the past two days and I am convinced that practice is mastery- the more you do, the better  it turns out- this broth is PHENOMENAL.  It’s a simple broth- I didn’t want that tamari or soy sauce taste and I didn’t want bouillon- I wanted that full flavorful taste of asian broths that appear almost clear, nothing floating around in it, nothing to get in the way but this one has the antioxidant, antibacterial crud busting anti-inflammatory fighting properties of Turmeric. The first night I tried making it with garlic and I found that, tho it was tasty, it had that raw garlic taste that to me seemed a little bit overwhelming. Last night I omitted the garlic and stuck with the ginger and onions. I think I am in love. The broth takes less than 10 minutes to make- less even- then I added in beautiful local veggies; Sautéed Kale, sweet potatoes, and some Chipotle Baked Tofu I had in the fridge. You could definitely play with flavors by adding mushrooms or scallions etc- this was me, in the middle of a 27 hour training, sick- and it was 

D E L I C I O U S.

broth

Simple Turmeric Broth for Vegetable Noodle Soup 2016

6c water

½ onion, coarsely chopped

2” fresh ginger, grated

1t turmeric

1t sesame oil

1t pink salt

Put everything in a pot, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 5-10 minutes.

Strain the broth through a fine mesh sieve into a large heatproof pitcher (I use my Vitamix container) or bowl. Discard the vegetables. Pour the broth back into the pot and then proceed to add fresh veggies, cooked rice noodles. This is the simplest, clear broth and it is just so easy and perfect for a pick me up or when you are not feeling full force to sip on.

sick-girl-noodle-soup

Vegetable Noodle Soup

3-4c Simple Broth

1/2 steamed sweet potato, sliced

1c Sautéed Kale

Sliced Chipotle Baked Tofu

1 serving rice noodles or vermicelli

1t hot sesame oil

Hot Water for noodles

optional: you could add other veggies; mushrooms, baby corn, water chestnuts etc.

In a bowl, add the uncooked, quick cooking noodles and cover with hot water. Cover and let steam. Set aside.

In a large skillet heat up the olive oil over medium high heat , prepare the Sautéed Kale by sautéing the garlic just until golden brown. Add the salt, red pepper, and then add the kale. With a fork or a pair of tongs, move the kale around the pan cooking the kale until wilted and tender. Remove from the pan and set aside. In the same pan, add little bit of hot water and the already cooked sweet potatoes slices just to heat them through. Set aside.

In the same skillet, heat up the broth and bring to a low boil.

In a serving bowl, place the cooked noodles on the bottom of the bowl. Add the cooked Kale, the sweet potatoes and the slices of tofu. Ladle the broth over to cover.Drizzle in the hot sesame oil. Taste and adjust for saltiness.

Fricken delicious.

Chipotle Baked Tofu

chipotle-baked-tofu

Not feeling well and going through my fridge, I wanted something quick and delicious that I didn’t have to fuss over. This was so good I made it again today.In 35-40 minutes you have perfect yumminess that really does taste a lot like chicken. This is great to have on hand- in the fridge as a quick snack, to add to soups, sandwiches or to eat hot with veggies and quinoa or rice for a meal. I am cherry bomb everything right now but you could definitely use another pepper instead, hotter or more mild. The cherry bombs lend a sweetness that is incomparable, the chipotle adds a deep, mellow, spicy that is one of my favorite flavor profiles. I may or may not be having this tonight with smashed potatoes and kale… SIMPLE.

1 Pound tofu, thinly sliced in long cubes, about 1” thick, 2″ long

2-4T Olive oil

1/2t chipotle powder (more or less)

1/2t pink salt (more or less)

1 cherry bomb or jalapeño pepper, sliced, with or without seeds (seeds make it hotter)

2T nutritional yeast

Pre-heat the oven to 375 degrees.

In a roasting pan or dish, drizzle about 3T of olive oil on the bottom of the pan.

Place the tofu rectangle cubes in the oil. Sprinkle the top with the chipotle powder, then add the sliced peppers on top and then sprinkle the salt, then nutritional yeast. Drizzle the top with more olive oil.

Roast in the oven/ convection oven for 40 minutes or until golden brown.

This tofu is absolutely delicious, hot OR cold.

THIS SHIT TASTES LIKE SPICY CHICKEN

Blueberry Coconut Kefir Love Bomb Lassi

*Blue coconut kefir love bomb

Summer berries…I can’t get enough…this smoothie is also filled with belly loving probiotics, if you don’t have vegan kefir on hand, you can sub a non-dairy milk or a fruit kombucha for the  liquid (mango or berry is amazing). It has an incredible tangy-ness that is so delicious, reminiscent of a Fruit Lassi and is my go to beverage post Hot Yoga.

Coconut Kefir Blueberry Love Bomb Lassi

1c fresh or frozen blueberries

1c prepared almond kefir or cashew milk

1T chia seeds

1t raw honey or 1 date

3/4c raw coconut yogurt

1c ice

Blend all ingredients together except the ice and process until smooth- taste and adjust if needed

Add the ice and process just until smooth.

Basil Jalapeño Cheese Dip

Basil Jalapeno Cheese Dip

2c cashews, soaked for an hour (this step can be skipped)

1T mellow white miso

2 capsules vegan probiotics (empty powder and dispose of the capsule)

1/2c filtered water -up to 3/4 if needed

1 clove garlic

1c fresh basil, minced

1/2t pink salt

3T coconut oil

Pinch chipotle powder- more if desired

½ red jalapeno pepper, minced

2T nutritional yeast

3t lemon juice (omit if fresh is not available)

Step 1.

In a Vitamix or high-powered blender, add the cashews (drained if soaked), the probiotic powder, miso and 1/2c of water.

Blend this at a lower speed initially to well incorporate the contents, speed up the motor as it gets blended. You will need to process this for at least 4-5 minutes until the cashews are absolutely creamy. Scrape down the sides intermittently and be sure to get all possible ‘pieces’ of cashews blended into the mix. Add a T of water as needed if the mixture gets stuck. If you process too fast, the contents will heat up, creating an oily mixture.

When totally creamy and smooth, remove to a glass or stainless steel bowl and set in a safe, warm place- I place mine in the dehydrator covered at about 100 degrees and let it run overnight. In lieu of a dehydrator, place it in a warm spot in your kitchen, covered for up to 24 hours.

Step 2.

Mix in the salt, nutritional yeast, basil, jalapenos, chipotle powder, coconut oil (should be room temp and soft, not liquid), and lemon juice. Transfer to a container and place in the fridge for at least 6 hours to set, best, overnight. It becomes a beautiful, spreadable, creamy cheesy bit of awesomeness that you can spread or use as a dip.

RAW COCONUT YOGURT

*raw yogurt

This is one of my most favorite foods of all time. I love food- It really doesn’t go well for me when I don’t like the food I am eating. Yogurt is one of those foods that historically has not translated well into being vegan, it’s just sort of weird. Whether its made from soy or nut milk, commercial vegan yogurt is really just not my favorite. It wasn’t until raw food school that I started to dabble in the fermented foods- we made yogurt out of coconuts…I wasn’t impressed, I mean I was, but not for the amount of work that went into making a cup of it….then I discovered raw frozen coconut meat. My sister Karen as per usual, started the entire family on the obsession, this time Raw Organic Vegan Yogurt. Made from literally 3 ingredients, ok 4 if you count water. This tastes like yogurt, but without that weird, sour dairy aftertaste….It’s so so simple, however, it may take a while to get into your awesome vegan yogurt groove. It’s almost imperative that you own a Vitamix or a heavy duty blender to get this done. In this post, I will be as transparent as possible with how I do this recipe simply because I’ve got it down. Feel free to add, change, and experiment with equipment, ingredients, etc and please, if you do, tell me how it goes.

WHAT I USE / ESSENTIALS:

  • 2 packages frozen coconut meat, thawed or / 2 pounds fresh meat (about 2 Young Thai coconuts)– don’t be trying to use the brown coconuts either, it’s not going to go well. Young Thai coconuts are soft, very soft. If you can’t find frozen coconut meat and you are super adept and ambitious and want to make it from scratch scratch, as in from the whole coconut, look up youtube videos on how to open up a coconut. You can use the water for the yogurt or drink it- it’s absolutely spectacular and depending upon the coconut, you may have more water than you will need for one recipe of yogurt.
  • 1 cup filtered water or raw coconut water– if you are using raw coconut water, you may want to adjust the sweetness from the sugar- coconut water is slightly sweet, when I use coconut water, I don’t even add sugar- I like the sour in contrast to fresh fruit (personal). Unless you have a source of raw coconut water, which many really don’t, use water. Even the coconut water that is claiming to be raw- isn’t, it’s treated with pressure which in turn, sort of cooking it. Coconut water in boxes is bullshit, it’s cooked and really is nothing more than sugar water without the vitamins, minerals and electrolytes touted- if you love the flavor then go ahead, otherwise, stick to plain water.
  • 2-4T coconut blossom sugar, raw agave, coconut crystals, maple syrup– I love the coconut blossom sugar, its still got many minerals intact, isn’t crazy sweet and it doesn’t discolor the final product where as the darker sweeteners may
  • 2 probiotic capsules- emptied or 1t probiotic powder– I use a vegan probiotic capsule- this is what kicks off the fermentation. I am sure you could use kombucha or kefir or some other starter but for me, the capsules offer clean, easy and consistent results and you are guaranteed  a ton of gut love in the process.
  • dehydrator– not essential but again, insures consistent results. I put the yogurt mix in and 6-12 hours later its a done deal. If I want it more tart, I leave it in longer. You can purchase a yogurt maker if you know that you want the vegan love in your life all day everyday, or invest in a  simple dehydrator if you think you may want to dry a banana or a mango from time to time. If you do not have a dehydrator, store the yogurt in a microwave, a cabinet, or somewhere that stays warm, it may take up to 3 days for it to ferment but it will work, just keep tasting it until it tastes as sour as you like.

 

HOW I DO:

In the blender, add the meat , sugar if using and the water. Run it on low until the machine grabs it and starts blending it together then start to increase the speed. You may need the Vitamix plunger to help it along- you could add more water but I find that that messes with the end result, it actually tastes like a diluted version. Once you are at full speed, run it for at least 5 minutes or until completely smooth, no specks, bumps, nothing- smooth as velvet or cream. FIVE MINUTES, no less. This is where your average blender will most definitely crap out. Add the probiotics. Let run for another 30 seconds until incorporated.

Pour out of the blender into a container and cover it. I place it in the dehydrator, again, anywhere warm will do it just may take longer to turn.

You can play with adding fruit to this base mix, you can add more sweetener, I love making a fruit concentrate with fresh fruit and sugar and letting it sit out overnight. When I do that, I make individual containers and spoon in the “fruit on the bottom”. Peach is my favorite, strawberries are also quite lovely and of course, blueberry….I’ve made lemon yogurt, coffee, lemon with fresh raspberries, vanilla, plain, whipped…I eat this stuff everyday….. I make Lassis, frozen yogurt, I give it to my Pitbulls, Ginger & Izabel and they LOVE it. Raw Vegan Yogurt for everyone!!!

So go forth, make some badass vegan raw coconut yogurt, if you need supplies, Burning Heart carries the meat and the coconut blossom sugar if you would like to order some. If you have questions, don’t hesitate to ask me at HotYogaGrl@gmail.com, if I can answer them I will. Most importantly, love yourself up when you’re making this and think good thoughts….it truly is a powerful and healing bit of deliciousness, there is something miraculous about it…Let me know how it goes…..Peace Love and all that good stuff ❤

 

Sundried Tomato & Ramp Cheese Spread

*sundried tomato & Ramp Cheese Spread

Seriously… NOT F*CKING AROUND….what a flavor on this cheese!!!! Ramps are only here for such a short time! What a way to celebrate their uniqueness and honor their presence. I had the opportunity to forage for ramps with my friend on her hillside- what a divine way to connect with the planet….spring has finally sprung.

Sundried Tomato & Ramp Cheese Spread

2c cashews, soaked for an hour (this step can be skipped)

1T mellow white miso

3 capsules vegan probiotics (empty powder and dispose of the capsule) or 1t powder

1/2c +up to 3T filtered water

2t onion powder

1/4c sundried tomatoes in oil- just the tomatoes, minced (I used Bionatura’s)

1/2t pink salt

1/4c coconut oil

3t lemon juice (omit if fresh is not available)

6 whole ramps, green & white minced

Step 1.

In a Vitamix or high-powered blender, add the cashews (drained if soaked), the probiotic powder, miso and 1/2c of water.

Blend this at a lower speed initially to well incorporate the contents, speed up the motor as it gets blended. You will need to process this for at least 4-5 minutes until the cashews are absolutely creamy. Scrape down the sides intermittently and be sure to get all possible ‘pieces’ of cashews blended into the mix. Add a T of water as needed if the mixture gets stuck. If you run this too fast, the contents will heat up, creating an oily mixture.

When totally creamy and smooth, remove to a glass or stainless steel bowl and set in a safe, warm place- I place mine in the dehydrator uncovered at about 100 degrees and let it run overnight. You could also in lieu of a dehydrator, place it in a warm spot in your kitchen, loosely covered. Leave this overnight or for 24 hours.

Step 2.

Mix in the salt, onion powder, sundried tomatoes, ramps, coconut oil (should be room temp and soft, not liquid), and lemon juice. Transfer to a container and place in the fridge for at least 6 hours to set, best, overnight. It becomes a beautiful, spreadable, creamy cheesy bit of awesomeness.