Saturday, February 19, 2011

Vanilla Walnut Non-Dairy Milk QUICK!

Quick 2 minute VANILLA WALNUT milk:

1 cup walnuts

1/2 tsp (or more) Vanilla Bean powder,

or vanilla extract will do in a pinch

1 Tbs Agave nectar or other sweetener, if desired*

1 cup or so of water

Blend. Pour in enough water to make it a Liter of Vanilla Walnut Milk.

No Vita-mix or Blend-Tec super blender are needed. No soaking, no straining. No dairy. Happy vanilla walnut milk!

*if you opt-out of using any sweetener, then soak the walnuts for a couple hours in water to remove any bitterness. Rinse well. Blend.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Alternatives to Cow-milk

Okay. So after reading the extensive amount of evidence showing how unhealthy dairy is for us, such as from T.Colin Campbell's ground-breaking book "The China Study" we know that it is best for us--and best for the planet, to ween ourselves off the bovine breast-milk.
After finally getting off the dairy, about seven years ago, I went to my friendly Co-operative market here and perused the dairy-free 'milks'. I've of course had soy milk many times, but then tried almond, hemp, hazelnut and coconut. Some of these are unflavored, sans carob, chocolate or vanilla, but still most have added sugars and some have many ingredients.
Even before reading Michael Pollan's "The Omnivore's Dilemma" and "Food Politics," by Marion Nestle, which were two very influencial books to me, I have been avoiding foods with a paragraph for an ingredient list and opting for those with perhaps five ingredients or less. I definitely avoid those with very long names that many dietitians cannot even identify. With much of the soy milk sold in stores being of the GMO variety, I would of course avoid those. Illegal to be sold in Europe and in Canada due to safety concerns, but safe for Americans? No thanks.
So there are some decent options in the store that I use on occasion, such as unsweetened coconut milk but I would rather make it fresh. Besides, stocking store shelves on the east coast with cases of almond milk, that came all the way from California and which probably includes 1/2 cup or less of non-water ingredients per quart, well, is almost like buying those wasteful little plastic bottles of water. There are better ways!

There are some decent options in the store that I use on occasion, such as unsweetened coconut milk. But I would rather make it fresh. Even in the stores though I haven't seen Walnut milk. Perhaps it would be much more expensive than other milks, but I have been making my own.

After viewing a recipe online at Eat Raw Vegan, I of course modified it significantly, so here is my recipe:

Vanilla Walnut Milk

1/2 cup Walnuts, raw (organic if possible)
1/4 cup Dates, pitted
1/2 teaspoon Vanilla bean powder*
(vanilla beans cut open and scraped out, so much better than an "extract")
5 cups water

Soak the walnuts for several hours (or just overnight) in enough water to cover them completely. Discard the water and rinse well to reduce the tannins and bitterness. Also soak the dates in another container in 1/2 cup water (of the 5 cups). Start blending with some of the remaining 4 1/2 cups of water on full power and gradually add the rest of it. If it is blended well enough there will be no residue to filter, it should be smooth and ready to go!

Stay tuned for additional recipes for dairy alternatives!

Monday, January 17, 2011

Do you need eggs in baking?

A friend of mine just asked me: 'Can I use flax seed meal as an egg substitute? Is that even possible? Great question. Some people really see the recipe as the way it has to be, but with such a high-quality substitute that is much healthier and doesn't have the food-safety concern of Salmonella enterocolitis (Salmonellosis)

No need to keep eggs in the fridge for baking when Flax is cheaper, healthier, a great source of Omega-3 fatty acids, essential fiber and protein, without the risk of salmonella, as are a concern with eggs--especially those from factory farms as is the case with the majority of eggs consumed in the United States.
each Tablespoon of ground* Flax, or "Flax Meal" provides, according to: , 1600 mg Omega-3, 2g of cancer preventing Fiber and 1g Protein with only 37 calories.
*I have an inexpensive "coffee-grinder" that I only use for the purpose of grinding flax.

--> For baking, instead of each egg, substitute:
1 Tablespoon ground Flax
3 Tbs Water (or Almond/Walnut/or Soy milk)

Ground flaxseed has many uses, such as in soy/coconut yogurt, mixed with some water and dabbed onto a pizza crust or on the top of bread will help to create a browning effect in the oven. It is also useful in smoothies, such as:

Super-hero Smoothie:
1 cup (or so) Kale, just the leaves, setting thick stems aside for other use
1-2 bananas fresh, ripe ( or frozen over-ripe bananas, saved for such use)
1 apple, de-cored or 1 orange
Blend well with just a couple cups of water, just enough to keep things moving. Add a couple tablespoons of ground flaxseed as desired.

Note:Since Flax is so high in Omega-3, if you grind it (i.e. make Flax Meal) find an empty jar to re-use and store in the fridge to keep it fresh.
Grinding the flax will puff it up, slightly increasing its volume, so measuring a tablespoon of ground (unpacked) flax will have 1600mg Omega-3/37 Calories vs 2300mg/55 Calories in whole/non-ground flaxseed, which may be more important if making large batches of egg-free baked treats.

Friday, July 9, 2010

USDA, a conflict of interest?

Post is in response to:

Article: "Dietary Guidelines Hearing Unleashes a Predictable Circus of Food Lobbying"

By Melanie Warner | Jul 9, 2010

to read her article, go to:


Government decision makers and lawmakers, etc, upon entering office must fill out and abide by conflict-of-interest statements. If a judge for example owned a million in shares of Monsanto, would need to recuse her/himself if there were a criminal case brought forth. If this is true to avoid problems with certain areas of government, how is it that it is allowed elsewhere? The United States Department of Agriculture's first interest is in promoting Industrial Agriculture. Message: eat more eat MORE. The USDA also has the job of pretending at the same time to be a good source of nutrition advice, promoting their Food Guide Pyramid Scheme and the last pyramid that even put 100% of the emphasis on exercise since there isn't even food in the picture. An often abbreviated design, the picture of a person running up a rainbow pyramid doesn't really bring home the message that the USDA cares about your nutritional health. The language has even been weakened. Message: choose certain foods in moderation. The messages of the USDA have been purposely watered down into meaningless language, eat less sugar became choose in moderation.

Until the Dietary Guidelines and the Pyramid--or any other picture that has a goal of simplifying the nutrition message--until these guidelines our out of the hands of the USDA, and out of the pocket of Industrial Agriculture, I do not expect much of value to be published. It isn't about science and the healthy recommendations that scientists, advisors, and committees have pushed for years, it's about the Pork, Cattlemen, Sugar, Salt, etc. lobby groups are WINNING OUT OVER PUBLIC HEALTH.

The USDA itself is a conflict of interest. How can they possibly give fair nutrition advice based on science and extensive research, when their primary goal is to promote, i.e. sell MORE of certain foods--often the ones we would be better off eating less of or avoiding entirely: beef, chicken, pork, dairy, foods high in sugar and high in salt, which are often foods with any nutritional value processed out of them.

We need to discontinue this practice of collusion with industry and get serious about nutrition. Since the Dietary Guidelines are designed to prevent and control disease, it would be very logical and practical to allocate the resources and responsibility to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
The CDC wouldn't be afraid of saying eat less salt it can promote hypertension and ulcers, eat less meat, it is high in saturated fat and Americans already consume more than twice the protein we need, which stresses the kidneys. The lobby groups wouldn't have a say. Why do they need to? My health is more important than industry lobby groups worries about the facts being told.
Here's to the CDC Food Guide Target, emphasizing the nutritional benefit of moving towards a more plant-based way of eating.

Two thoughts to end with.
>> If the public in the United States were to have available to them general nutritional recommendations based on science, emphasizing the benefits of moving towards a plant-based diet, wouldn't this really be a great way of attacking the costs of sickcare?

>>Why is it that when becoming a physician the Hippocratic oath is taken, but through education (1 class or less is required in Nutrition) and in practice the advice to: “Let thy food be thy medicine and thy medicine be thy food,” this advice of the Father of Modern Medicine is mostly ignored?

Thank you, now I'll get back to enjoying my local organic mixed field green salad, topped with avocado, walnuts, celery, carrots and garden cucumbers, apple cider vinegar and a touch of E.V. olive oil Yum!

Monday, February 8, 2010

Favorite vegan, plant-based Recipes

Nutmeat a.k.a. Super-good

Sun-dried Tomato Pâté & Wrap

Servings: Makes about 2 cups.


1 cup walnuts

1 cup sun dried tomatoes, soaked 4 hours, drained*

*only drain (& save) if sun-dried tomatoes are salted

1+ clove garlic add more if you like!

Dried chilies ~3, or Crushed red pepper

~1/3 cup Oatmeal, instant, dry

Filtered water, add gradually


·Ezekiel sprouted grain tortillas ·Spinach, Romaine

·Basil, fresh ~2-3 leaves per wrap. ·Veganaise

Preparation: Drain s-d tomato & lightly rinse. Save this tomato broth for salad dressing base, etc.

>Place chilies, oats and garlic ingredients into your food processor. Blend well. Add other ingredients. Blend to desired consistency, adding water as needed.

Roll up into tortilla and cut like a sushi-nori rolls.


--This is a recipe I found online at: but modified since the s-d toms. are very salty and do not need tamari/soy sauce as originally recommended. Also, I have found that adding the oats a) make this much lower in fat per serving and it is sort of inert, a healthy whole food that increases fiber, lowers fat (and cost).

More recipes will be added as I find, make and approve them. Happy eating (=

Friday, January 2, 2009

Let's just surround people with junk food, every moment of their lives.

We have an epidemic of obesity in the United States with 2/3 of the people here overweight or obese. It seems to be getting worse every year. I'm trying to imagine how difficult it would be for a parent who is trying their best teaching and encouraging their child how to be healthy, especially as it relates to eating. We are surrounded by advertising, sometimes we don't even realize we are targets of marketing, but children have an especially tough time figuring out that Batman doesn't really eat fast 'food', it's just an advertisement.
I see some steps in the right direction, like some grocery stores, including Wegman's, offer candy-less checkouts. Other places though, are going in the wrong direction. When I was getting my small, fuel-efficient car inspected (drive less!) I was dumbfounded to see:

Free high fat, high sugar frozen treats--and it's about to snowstorm! Does this auto dealer wish to make it difficult for parents with nagging children and others who may have a tough time with self control? Is it really necessary to succumb people to health-detracting food-like-substances at every point in their lives? I looked in the case for a healthy alternative, but alas, not even one could be found.
If we are going to reverse this awful trend of increasing occurrences of obesity, cardio-vascular disease, diabetes, kidney disease, cancer and other nutrition related life-shortening medical problems, we need to make some big changes in the way we do things in this country. Allowing corporations to continuously push Eat More Eat More messages to both adults and children just will not work.

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Some guy posted on my wall

After careful consideration, I made a few posts, created a couple ideas and had promoted a few ideas of others from , a wonderful website that is to be submitting their top 10 ideas to the Obama Administration in the next few days. These top ideas will be followed by a national campaign! Well I just checked my wall and someone posted a message there which seems--coming from a science-based background--it seems laughable, until I realize that much of the public think this way. That really is scary.

First, his post:
Daniel Fish*:

"Since the beggining (sic) of time cow's have been a sign of a family's wealth. It is still that way is some places. Cows are not people. The only purpose barn yard animals ever had were for food. I agree that raising them by means of crowded unsanitary conditions is not being good stewards. If you think you will get society to believe not eating animal fat is good for them you living in a fantasy land. It may sound cool to young women who have no connection to the homestead farm from which we all have evolved. My sister and many of her friends have been stanch vegans. They regret deeply the effects it has had on their health. In order to recover from a deadly spiral they now eat animal fat. Raw Milk is the chocked full of enzimes (sic), vitamins and dense nutrition that can only be assimalated (sic) by animal fats.

{We already have plenty of digestive enzymes to break down our food, but many humans lack much or really any lactase, so we can't even digest milk well. Vitamin D is added by UV-light. Dense nutrients? Artery clogging saturated fat and cholesterol, obesity-promoting high levels of calories. Dense in calories, exactly what Americans are consuming too much of.}

My sister says she has caused irrivocable (sic) damage to her health due her pratice (sic) in vegan eating. She is the one who has turned me on to whole milk. I do not advocate abusing animals and want the government off our backs in all arenas. {The government should stop promoting milk, a body-fluid that many cannot even consume and tolerate in the short term--allergy/intolerance}
We should join forces and fight the filthy rich not one another. I support the ethical treatment of man also. {Was she binging on oreo's and vanilla soy milk? They're vegan. I eat a variety of minimally processed plant-based foods. }

I would encourage what sound science on nutrition proves that animal fat is equivelant (sic) to a sound and properous (sic) healthy life.
{ I can't even fathom what this means. Eat bowls of lard? I thought 2/3 of Americans are already overweight/obese with many put on cholesterol and hypertension meds to mask consequnces of diet, and without any dietary changes recommended. hmm.}

I am posotive (sic) the need for health care and AMA doctors is intertwined with speeding up the need and frequency for which we need this system pushed on us by the extreme wealthy.

I hope you will investigate the proof of sound dense nutrition instead of cool pop culture eating myths. If man started off as vegans man would no longer be on this planet.

Posted by Daniel Fish on 01/01/2009 @ 08:10PM PST

Now my (surprised) comment:

Mr. Fish--In regards to your comment below,
I appreciate your concern to find answers as to what a healthy diet really means. An exclusively plant-based diet with the possible exception of Vitamin B-12 , provides all the nutrients a human body needs.
{B12 is easily obtainable from using tasty Nutritional yeast (inactive) or from a B12 Supplement.}
As an athlete consuming a plant-based diet, aka 'vegan', I easily consume more than enough protein and many more vitamins and minerals without high levels of saturated fat and other unwanted consequences of consuming large amounts of animal products such as are in the Standard American Diet, SAD.
First you tell me that "My sister SAYS (my emphasis) she has caused irrivocable (sic) damage to her health due her pratice (sic) in vegan eating." Without taking a look at her daily intake, I wouldn't have much information to prove causation the lifestyle choice of being 'vegan' is suggested to have had on her health.
Then you tell me that sound science recommends we eat lard, which is precisely what animal fat is. If you have sound scientific evidence, please show it to me. As a Dietitian, I have never seen anything of the sort. I've seen the exact opposite. Years of research has shown that diets high in Saturated Fat, the animal fat you are recommending we consume, promotes cardio-vascular disease like heart attacks, strokes, high blood pressure, and high cholesterol. There is just zero benefit and many dangers in following a diet that is high in animal based foods, which is especially worrisome if you have a GOAL of eating more lard for some purported benefit.
If this is really a concern of yours, which it seems to be you would benefit from reviewing the science, which is the Most Comprehensive Study of Nutrition Ever Conducted, funded by Oxford and Cornell Universities and the National Institutes of Health, read The China Study, by T.Colin Campbell, PhD & Thomas M. Campbell.

Posted by Daniel Keough on 01/01/2009 @ 09:42PM PST

*Posted on both participant's walls without all the "(sic)" and {comments} through