Be Good to Your Temple

I get asked often what diet I follow. I think of it more as a lifestyle than a diet but here are a few things I do. This way of eating has given be unlimited energy, happiness and balance.  I don't follow any one diet strictly. I mix ideas, tweak them and make them work for my needs:

1. I eat organic, seasonal and local as much as possible. I try and grow as much of my own vegetables and fruits as I can during the spring, summer and fall and freeze or dehydrate some for winter. I like simple meals prepared from scratch. Store bought eggs will never taste like a farm fresh egg. I joined my local co-op.

2. Fat... oh that wicked food..haha. I  eat olive oil and butter. Local, cultured unsalted or grass fed butter. Once in awhile I will also add flax or coconut oil. Remember, the right fats do not make us fat. We need to eat good fat. I love avocados and eat 1/2 of one most days. I got in the habit while living in California. I love nuts and seeds. The wrong fats make us unhealthy and overweight.  It is all about the quality of the food. You also need to make sure your elimination system is working efficiently. That comes from lots of fiber from fruits, veges, whole grains and seeds.

3. I follow food combining most days. That means I keep heavy starches and proteins for separate meals. This helps optimize digestion. So a grain and vegetables for lunch and a piece of meat or fish and a salad for dinner. I have fresh fruit or a fruit and nut smoothie for breakfast. Once in awhile I will have eggs for breakfast but will still eat fruit 1/2 hour before.  Breakfast is exactly what it sounds like. You are breaking your overnight fast. Fruit is the most gentle way to do this. I also don't drink anything with meals.

4. Blood type diet. I am an O blood type so I try not to eat dairy, white potatoes, wheat and corn. Also, after being a vegetarian for 14 years, a vegan for 2 years and a raw vegan for 2 years I found my body needs a little meat and/or eggs daily. Just 6-8oz a day but I still need it to stay balanced. It helps balance my pH. Avoiding certain foods sounds harder than it is. Example, millet flour makes a great alternative to corn meal.
For more information on the blood type diet go to: 
For those of you who drink milk here is a good chart to look at. A customer just sent this to me.
                                                  I am rather proud of Pennsylvania.

5.I try and eat 50% or more raw food each day. Lightly steamed is sometimes better for some people. Just remember to eat your fruits and vegetables. On most days I eat raw until dinner. Keeps me zooming through my day with no feeling of tiredness.  I sprout my nuts and then dehydrate them. I also make raw flax crackers for a late afternoon snack. Look for the recipes below. My dehydrator is my new best friend.

6.I mostly drink water, yerba mate and matcha. For me a glass of water wakes me up better in the morning than coffee. I challenge you to try it. I NEVER drink soda or coffee.  I keep a stash of green tea teabags in my purse for social gatherings. I am responsible for my own needs.  A new thing I have come to enjoy is plain hot water.  One night I wasn't in the mood for tea but wanted to drink something hot so I just drank the hot water. I loved it. I looked it up and  health practitioners have been doing this for years. Who knew??!!  I also sometimes have dandelion tea. A good liver cleaner. Don't kill those lovely weeds. Make tea or put them in your salad!!!! : ) If you have seasonal allergies consult a doctor before eating or drinking dandelion.

                                                                 Benefits of Drinking Hot Water

                                                                           Benefits of Dandelion

7.Stay active. I personally don't like working out but I love kids, animals, gardening, and getting on a ladder and doing home improvement projects. I do keep a mini trampoline in the living room and jump a few times a week. Just find whatever stimulates you enough to do often. I like to tell people that I am so thin because I have a 3 story farm house and a short memory, but seriously, sometimes if I am going upstairs or down I do the stairs 5 times fast before continuing with my reason for using the stairs.  Really gives the old legs a workout. Feels great. I am not saying everyone should be running up and down their stairs. Just think about what you do often in your day and make it work for you. Dance while you are working in the kitchen. I do all the time and cleaning is fun. My dogs love when I dance.

                                                                              Music to Dance To

8.When I go out I will eat whatever is placed before me or if it is a buffet or restaurant will make the healthiest choices without worry. My philosophy is the joy I feel with friends and family compensates for the avoid foods. Most times my body actually enjoys the change and I have no problems. The funny thing is if I try and do the same thing in the privacy of my home I always feel the effects. So save the partying for the party.

9. I only use himalayan salt and get my iodine from seaweed powder. I rarely eat pork or crustaceans, maybe once or twice a year. I am a foodie at heart so really love all foods and have eaten lots of different weird things but as a general rule don't eat these meats.

10. I eat very little concentrated sugars, including maple syrup or honey. These foods are good foods but once I gave them up my energy shot up drastically when I didn't think it could go any higher. My thinking is: look at cane sugar, bee hives, licorice root and maple trees. It is very hard to get the sugar from all of these sources. Obviously we aren't made to eat a ton of it. It is amazing how sweet fruit tastes once you give up concentrated sugar.

11. If you suffer from food allergies rotating concentrated foods is also a good idea. Like try not to have the same protein or starch or nuts 2 days in a row. Try and rotate every 3 days. Most people do this anyway by planning a weekly menu. So maybe a sweet potato one day, quinoa the next and rice pasta the 3rd. Or fish one day, then a beef burger the next and turkey the next. I keep a pint jar of raw nuts on the counter and rotate it with pecans, walnut, pumpkin seed and almonds. A great quick snack readily available.

12. My nutritionist suggested I take supplements 6 days a week and let my body rest one. She said this keeps the body from getting too use to them and lets the body rest from working. I do this. I believe in food sources as a way to get vitamins and minerals. I take a break each week from any super food powders or juices I may be taking. Budgeting, traveling and socializing tends to make this happen naturally anyway.

13. Above all listen to your own body. These are just tips that work well for ME. Your body is trying to tell you what it wants. Every person has a slightly different need. Only you can figure that out. Be kind to yourself and feed it well. Once I figured out what my body loves I feel satisfied, my energy stays level, I feel happy and my pH stays at 7.0 almost all the time. I rarely get sick, have no pain and my allergies are none existent. Figuring it out is like winning a million dollars. More than a million... priceless.



Chia seed pudding:
This is low cal, filling and nutritious.

1/3 cup chia seed
1/2 cup raw almonds
1 -2  fresh ripe banana(I use 1 and 1/2. The amount depends on how sweet you like it)
1 inch piece of peeled fresh ginger
2 - small black dried figs with stems removed.

Place the figs, ginger, almonds and bananas in a blender with 2 and 1/3 cup water. Blend until completely smooth and creamy. In a bowl put the chia seeds and then the contents of the blender and stir with a spoon. Mix until all the seeds are distributed evenly throughout the mixture. Put in the refrigerator for a few hours or until it thickens. Very rich and filling but light and refreshing. One small warning - some people may get a little gas from the chia seeds. I have not found this to be a problem for me at all but from reading the internet came across the warning.


My Morning Fruit and Nut Shake Recipe - for 2 people:

1/2 - cup almonds, walnut, pecans or pumpkin seeds or a blend - plain or  sprouted or dehydrated
1 - TBS cocoa beans(optional)
2 - cups water
1/2 - tsp kelp granules
1 - TBS olive oil or coconut oil
2 - tsp plain hemp powder(optional)
2 - 1/2 frozen bananas
1/2 -  cup extra frozen fruit or berries(optional)

then add any other items that work well for you.

I put the nuts and nibs in the blender with the 2 cups of water, then add kelp, hemp powder,the barley green and blend until liquid. Then I place the frozen bananas and frozen extra fruit in and blend until smooth and thick. Then I add the oil and just blend a few seconds to mix it in. My favorite frozen fruits to add are mangoes, blueberries or peaches. This recipe makes 2-16 ounce glasses. This breakfast can easily keep me going until lunch. My kind of fast food!! I love this smoothie. If you want it sweeter add a couple of dates or a pinch of raisins.

Recently I have been adding a cup of sprouts to the drink. I make these homemade in a jar each week. Very easy to make and I love the idea of fresh vegetables added to the drink.

If you find it gets too think add 1/4 cup or more of extra water

Also, if you have time you can sprout the almonds 12-24 hours before using. Just soak in water with a few drops of neutralizer added. I usually change the water one time during the soak.

Kale Chips:
These are amazing snacks and salad toppers. Better than croutons!!

Preheat oven to its lowest temperature. Around 150-170 degrees.

4 cups of kale leaves
2  tsp olive oil
1/4 tsp sea salt.

Take the stems out of the kale leaves. Save the stems for using in a juice or salad later. Rip or cut the leaves into 2 inch squares. Put the pieces in a bowl with the olive oil and salt and toss. Lay in a single layer on a cookie sheet. Let the kale "cook" for 30 minutes or so. They are done when crispy and totally dried out. I usually start them before I begin preparing dinner. Just be warned, these are totally addicting! These can be eaten as is or layed on top of a fresh salad for more texture and a salty taste.

NEW 1/2014 - Another recipe for kale chips my daughter showed me. She serves these at her restaurant:
A head of kale, washed and cut into large pieces
1 - cup pumpkin seeds
1 - Tablespoon nutritional yeast and /or a sprinkle of garlic powder
enough water to make a thin paste
salt to taste

 Take pumpkin seeds,  nutritional yeast and/or garlic powder and water and blend to a thin paste. Dunk each leaf of kale in this mixture, lay flat on tray and salt to taste. Then dehydrate in a dehydrator or very low oven. Yum.

Brussel Sprout Salad:
When I was a kid I HATED Brussel Sprouts. Everyone just cooked them until they were soft and put butter and salt on them. Yuk.  Now I love them because of this great idea. Just like the kale chips I make chips with the outer leaves of the sprouts.

8-10 organic brussel sprouts
olive oil

First take each Brussel Sprout and remove any loose leaves you can. Usually I can get 4-5 leaves off each one before they get too hard to remove.

I take these leaves and toss them with a little olive oil and salt and put on a cookie sheet and bake at 170 degrees until crisp and addicting.

I take the rest of the brussels sprouts, cut them in half and then thinly slice them from top to the stem area creating what looks like tiny cole slaw. I usually save the stems for soup later. They are a little tough. Then I toss this with olive oil and lemon. I like it like this but you can doctor it up with herbs and seasonings.

So, I put the sliced brussel sprouts in a bowl and serve with the brussel sprout chips on top. Beautiful and filling. Now I get so excited about eating Brussel Sprouts I am going to try growing them in the garden.
Edible Buds :)



Almonnaise -I originally found this recipe in a Fit For Life cookbook but adjusted it to fit my needs.

I love this "mayo". It tastes great on grains and vegetables. Great as a condiment on sandwiches or wraps. My husband likes to put this on everything. A flavorful substitution for butter. I think one of the most beneficial foods is cold pressed olive oil. My body loves it.

So here is my version of the recipe:
1/2 cup almonds
3/4 cup water
1/2 tsp nutritional yeast(optional, I sometimes don't add this) You can use up to 1 tsp if you prefer.
1/4 tsp garlic powder
1/2-3/4 tsp sea salt
1& 1/4 cup cold pressed olive oil or other oil of choice. Just make sure it is cold pressed and top quality. Low quality oils are not healthy!
3 - Tablespoon lemon juice.

First you want to remove the skins of the almonds. To do this take a small pot of water and bring it to a boil. Take it off the stove, let it cool for 5 minutes and then put the almond in the hot water and let them sit for 5 minutes or until the skins loosen. Rinse them in cold water and put them in a bowl. Now comes the fun part. Kid love to help take the skins off. They just pop right off.

Once the skins are all removed take these almonds and place them in a blender. Chop them fine, then add water, nutritional yeast, garlic and salt and blend until smooth.

Turn the blender to low and take out the insert on the lid and slowly pour the olive oil in a small stream into the blender as it run. This should start the thickening process but if not don't worry. Lemon is magic…haha.  Once all the olive oil is mixed in add the 3 tablespoons of lemon and blend at a medium speed and watch it thicken up to a mayo consistency. It is like a science experiment.



We love snacking on these once in awhile. They are fun to make. Pumpkin seeds pop like popcorn. You can sprinkle them on salads, cooked veges, even on top of chili. Adds texture and a little salt.

1 - cup of raw organic pumpkin seeds
1/2 - tablespoon ghee
sea salt

I take my iron skillet(my favorite pan in my kitchen) and heat it to a medium heat with the 1/2 tablespoon of oil. I put the oil in cold and heat the two together. This way the oil doesn't get over hot and I can keep track of it as it heats up. Don't let it smoke!! Once the pan is medium hot I add the pumpkin seeds and toss around with a spoon or spatula. With time the seeds will begin to pop and turn from a flat seed to a puffed one. They actually make a popping sound. Once they are all toasted and most of the popping has stopped pour them out on a few layers of paper towels to absorb excess oil and then salt to taste. Let them cool down and put in a jar and enjoy.

Another, and probably my favorite way to prepare pumpkin seeds is to roast them. After you have carved or prepared a pumpkin for cooking take the stringy stuff and seeds and separate them. You should get most of the stings off but leaving a little won't hurt the flavor. Don't wash the seeds! Then toss the whole pile of slimy seeds onto a cookie sheet and spread out evenly and roast in a 350 degree oven until the strings have cooked and the nuts are dry and toasted to a medium brown. I don't even salt these and eat the hull and all. I LOVE these.

My daughter will sprinkle the seeds with a little salt, cayenne and cumin before roasting.

                                                                         Nutrition in Pumpkin Seeds


Very Simple Granola Recipe:
I have made over 100 gallons of this in my life. My husband and kids love it. Of course we live in the middle of maple syrup country. It is good with almond, rice, goat's or cow's milk. It also tastes good with a little juice poured on it, yogurt or plain as a trail mix. People have been after me for the recipe. Well, here it is. So simple. Haha, the flavor makes it seem harder to make than it is. Makes about a gallon.

3 - 18 oz containers of rolled organic oats - not quick oats.
3/4 - cup olive oil
3/4 - 1  cup maple syrup - adjust to how sweet you want it.
1 - cup almonds, course ground in blender. I like to leave a lot of big chunks.

Mix all the ingredients in a large bowl or dutch over. It takes a little time to get all the oats coated with the olive oil and syrup. One tip -  Put the olive oil in a measuring cup first and pour into mixture and then pour the syrup in the same cup and pour. The olive oil first coats the cup and makes the maple syrup pour out completely so you don't waste any.

Heat oven to 325. Pour the granola mixture onto 2 large cookie sheets. Bake for about 20 minutes until all toasted. I am an out of sight out of mind type of gal so I have burned my fair share of granola. It still tastes good. Maybe set a timer. Check a few times and mix around with a spatula to help it cook evenly. Edges tend to brown first. I use to have a convection oven and you can cook this at a much lower temperature longer and it is even better.

Take out of oven and let cool. Your house will smell heavenly. Place in a gallon sized glass container with a tight lid and leave on counter. I keep a stainless steel scoop above the container. I love when I hear someone in the kitchen getting granola. Lasts a long time. Use up within 3-4 weeks.


You can also add other nuts, seeds, coconut and other rolled grains before cooking, just use instead of some of the oats or almonds. Sometimes my husband adds dried fruit before the milk, like raisins or goji berries. Use your imagination. I like the maple flavor and then I don't have to add any vanilla or other flavorings. It is a little expensive to make but lasts a long time. It is a good alternative to heavier desserts. It makes about 20 servings so that comes out to about .75 per serving. You can always make this in smaller quantities.


Homemade Almond Milk - to use on the granola

1 - cup raw almonds - sprouted 12-24 hours - you can also use walnuts
1 -2  Tablespoon sweetener -  I rarely sweeten ours but if I do I use maple syrup or raw honey
 4 - cups filtered or spring water

Sprout almonds. To do this soak in clean water with a few drops of MII neutralizer added to the water. I usually change the water every 12 hours to keep it clean.  Once soaked the skins just pop right off. You don't have to peel them if you don't want to. The almonds will have a small sprout right inside the pointed side. If you split it in half you can see it. See photo below.

Soaking and sprouting helps make the almonds more digestible.

Place almonds, sweetener and 2 cup of water in blender. Blend until smooth. Add last 2 cups cup of water and again blend until smooth. Strain if you want. I don't. Place the milk in the fridge and enjoy. A nice alternative for those who don't tolerate dairy.

Thanks to a good friend and customer, Mary F., I have found a new wonderful late afternoon drink. A matcha latte. I take 1/2 tsp of matcha powder and whisk it with 1/3 cup hot water, not boiling. I bring the water to a boil and then let it set for 5 minutes to cool a bit. Once the tea is frothy from whisking I add about a cup of almond milk. So good!!! Creamy and gives me great energy. Sweeten to taste. You can also heat the almond milk a little if you want a hot latte. I like as is.
This drink has a beautiful light green color.

Sometimes I  make a matcha maca latte. Say that three times fast...haha. Take 1/2 tsp matcha, 1 tsp maca and 1/2 cup of hot water and whisk together until blended and dissolved. The add 3/4 cup of almond milk and stir. Very delicious. When it comes to maca(and all powdered superfoods) make sure to work up slowly, talk to your doctor about it and make sure it doesn't interfere with any medications you may be taking.  Some people suggest toasting raw maca or getting gelatinized maca. Lot of info on the internet about it. Remember we are all different and even though I love it, it may not work for you.

                                                                 Vitamins and Minerals in Maca

                                                            Vitamins and Minerals in Matcha


One note about raw almonds. Since 2007 the USDA requires all US almonds to be steam pasteurized. The only way to get real raw almonds is to go straight to the farm or get them through a company that gets their almonds from Italy , Spain or other countries. The only company I have found that sells real raw organic almonds from Italy and will ship is Sunfoods but they are very expensive. I save these almonds for my milk. I am looking into a few other sources that I can co-op with others. If you buy 100lbs you can get them for less but it is so expensive the best way is to go in with others and split it and freeze. That said, I have found that Trader Joes sells "raw" almonds that have been steam pasteurized and from what I can see they still sprout. Their price per pound can't be beat but I am sure the quality is compromised to a point.  So be careful of your almond source and talk to the companies. Some companies use propylene oxide for this process and are still allowed to label them as raw... unbelievable!!  Remember this goes for raw almond butter, also.

Since this post I have found another company that sells unpasteurized almonds plus other wonderful foods. It is called Z Natural Foods. Here is their link:

                                                                                Z Natural Foods

                                  For more info read the following article: Pasteurization of Raw Almonds

My new and favorite tool in the kitchen is my dehydrator. I researched and debated for quite awhile before I purchased it. I was worried I would spend the money and then barely use it. Well, let me tell you, I have had it a year now and I don't know how I lived without it. I think it runs almost 24-7(just kidding , see below). It is a gardener's best friend. It is for anyone who takes their health seriously. I bought the 9 tray dehydrator but they make a 4 tray that would be fine for most people and that is more economical.  In the summer I am glad for the 9. This a great way to be creative in getting more raw food into your diet.  I will share some of my recipes below. Enjoy!!!

One note: use your dehydrator carefully and wisely. It is easy to overuse it. Plan ahead so you fill it up. When food is done it may be tempting to let it sit in there and run an extra cycle until you have more time to put it in a container, but take it out the second it is done and turn the machine off.  Work it out where you can use it 7-10 days a month instead of all the time. Fill the trays. I learned the hard way that by not paying attention and running it half full all the time ended up costing me around 50.00 extra a month on my electric bill. It took some sleuthing for me to figure out it was the dehydrator. So now I will dehydrate nuts and flax crackers all at once instead of one after the other. Seems like a no-brainer but I didn't think it would use that much electricity. I thought it was like a fan but it was pointed out to me it is a fan with a heater. No one warned me so I want to warn anyone who reads this. In the summer I am really  going to  have to plan out my use.


Flax Cracker:
Plain flax crackers:
1- 14 oz package of Organic Ground Flax seeds/ about 3 cups.
4 - cups of water
1 -2 - tsp himalayan pink salt -  salt to your preference. I use 1 and 3/4 tsp

In a large bowl mix the flax seeds with the salt. Then add the water and mix well. Do this quickly. If you pour the water and do something else before mixing it will be lumpy. So after you pour the water be ready to mix with a fork. Let this set for about 15-20 minutes. The flax will cause the water to become gelatinous and easier to work with. I get out 3 trays from my dehydrator and put a silicone sheet on each one. I lay these across my kitchen counters. I ladle an even amount of the flax mixture in the center of each tray.  I then wet my hands with cold water and work the flax mixture out to cover the sheet. I then pop it into my dehydrator set at 125 degrees and let them "bake" for about and hour and 1/2. Once the flax mixture
has set and it dry to the touch I pick up the silicone sheet(the flax mixture will stick to it) and flip if over. I then carefully peel back the silicone sheet so that only the flax mixture is left on the tray. I set the silicone sheet aside to be washed later. I pop the flax back in the dehydrator for another hour to hour and 1/2. Once it is workable I take a pair of scissors and cut each sheet of flax mixture into cracker shapes. If you lose track of time and the flax mixture become brittle you can just break it into crackers. A little messier but still good. I put the tray of crackers back in the dehydrator and leave overnight or until totally dry. These are very good and filling. Makes about 3 quart jars worth of crackers.

Spicy Flax Cracker:
1 - 14 oz package of organic ground flax seeds / about 3 cups
4 - cups of water
1-2 tsp himalayan pink salt
1/2 tsp cayenne
3 - Tablespoons nutritional yeast
1 and 1/2 tsp tumeric

Follow the same instructions as above. Be sure and mix the spices in with the dry flax seeds before adding water. It makes it so much easier to mix. These make wonderful cracker to serve with tomatoes and guacamole.  I eat about 7 cherry tomatoes, 1/2 avocado mixed with lemon and salt and about 6 crackers and this makes a wonderful late afternoon snack.

Sweet Flax Crackers:
1 - 14 oz package of organic ground flax seeds/ about 3 cups
4- cups of water
6-9 dates - you can experiment with other sweeteners like apple, agave, honey or stevia.
3/4 - tsp salt
1 and 1/2 tsp cinnamon
3/4 tsp ginger
3/4 tsp clove
1/4 tsp nutmeg

Blend water and dates until totally blended and liquid. Then follow the same instructions as above. These are great when you are hungry for something sweet. Good plain or with nut butter.

                                                                                 The Goodness of Flax


Co-op Muffins aka Matcha Muffins:
My daughter and I have tea and talk every week. We are both gluten free and have found these wonderful muffins at the East End Food Co-op in Pittsburgh that are heavenly. A few times they have been out of them so we decided to figure out our own version and this is what we came up with. We make ours a little differently and we like our version slightly better. All I can say is they are decadent, but in a good way.

Preheat oven to  350

2 - cups almond flour. [I use Red Mill but you could buy blanched almonds and make your own. You could probably substitute a little coconut flour  or walnut flour for some of the almond flour.]
1/4-1/2 tsp himalayan salt
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 and 1/2 T matcha tea
2 - large eggs
1/4 cup agave
1/4 cup olive oil
12 Walnuts or  a handful of slivered almonds, pumpkins seeds or chocolate chips

This recipe is so easy it is embarrassing. All you do is mix the dry ingredients and them mix in the liquid ingredients. Divide the batter into 12 muffin cups. I have a stainless steel muffin pan and I don't oil it or anything. Just divide the batter up amongst the 12 cups. You could use paper liners to make it easier. Then I place a walnut on top of each one. You could also use slivered almonds or pumpkin seeds. If you use chocolate chips place them on after the muffins are out of the oven and cooled a bit so they  melt just enough to coat the top.

I bake them for about 15 minutes and then start checking on them. You want them to brown a little but if left too long will get a dark brown color. I have forgotten them a few times and even slightly burned they are amazing. Let cool and then gently, using a knife, loosen the muffins from the pan. I store them in the freezer. They thaw out perfectly.

The cool thing is they are bright green when you split them open. Would be great for St Patrick's day or anytime you want green food....like every day. : )

Makes 12 muffins.   These are wonderful with hot tea. Enjoy.


My favorite 3 o'clock pick me up. Carrot, Beet, Kale Juice.
I try and have a fresh juice 2- 3 times a week.

Looks and feels like a blood transfusion.

"Lettuce turnip the Beets - my daughter has this on a t-shirt.

Before juicing I always take the fruits and vegetables I am going to use and place them in the sink with a Miracle II bath. In a sink I put 1 tsp of soap and fill it halfway with water. I soak all the produce for 20 minutes and then scrub clean. Organic produce is chemical free but not dirt and bacteria free. They need washed well.

6 large carrots, 1/4 beet and 1 kale leaf. I wash everything well in Miracle II soap and then rinse.

I personally love my champion juice. It is 30 years old and I bought it used in California from a friend. I have only had to replace one thing and that was 20 years ago. The company discovered a flaw in the blade and sent me a new one for free. The motor on this thing is amazing. Everything should be built the way my Champion is . It takes a little time to clean but I am use to it.

Drink within 15-20 minute of juicing. The fresher the better. I always drink the juice before I start cleaning up the juicer.

This juice is so beautiful and makes me happy!!! L'chaim!!!


Another 3 o'clock delight. Lemonade aka  Apple, Kale, Lemon, Ginger Juice:
My daughter created this drink and it is wonderfully refreshing. A staple in the summer. This recipe makes enough for two people.

 5 - organic apples
 1  - inch cube of ginger
 2 -  kale leaves
 juice from one lemon  about 1 tablespoon
1 -  cup ice

Juice apples, ginger and kale. Put in blender and add ice and lemon juice. Don't juice the lemon. Just squeeze the juice out separately. Perfection in a glass. Amazing and nourishing.

Yet another afternoon favorite is Pineapple Sprout Juice:
My kids have been drinking this since they were young. Even as little guys they loved this drink. My oldest said she just made herself some the other day and it brought back her childhood. Just two ingredients.

1/4 pineapple skin and all. Sliced into spears that fit in the juicer.
1/2 cup alfalfa or clover or a sprout mix. I make these myself to make sure they are fresh and clean.

Juice the pineapple and put the juice in the blender with the sprouts and blend until it is frothy and milky. For some reason those two tastes work well together. I am drinking a glass as I write. Yum. This is also an easy cleanup.

Icy Pengy
This is not a juice but another one of my kid's favorites made with the juicer. My husband named it. It is funny how it was such a familiar word in our house. We sometimes forgot other people didn't know what Icy Pengy meant.

When you put the juicer together take out the strainer and put in the closed plate. This keeps anything from juicing. Now all you have to do it put frozen fruit through the juicer and ice cream comes out the nozzle. I alternate a piece of banana with another  frozen fruit to give it a creamy consistancy. Strawberries, mangos, peaches, and blueberries work great.  The only bad part is this really doesn't keep well. It is best eaten freshly made.


  **Juices are very concentrated foods. If you have health issues or are new to juicing please consult your doctor before beginning. Kale, beets, especially the greens, and some other foods contain a high sugar content and oxalic acid so be cautious if you have diabetes or kidney problems. I think juicing is amazing but whenever you start something new, go slow and get counseling.


As a kid growing up in Virginia and West Virginia it seemed that watermelon was at every picnic and summer meal. I never understood why everyone loved it. It was beautiful, like Christmas in July,  but it was messy, you had to deal with the seeds, and compared to sugary desserts and drinks tasted rather bland. So as an adult I never bought it or ate it. I felt no fruit should ever be that large and cumbersome. I seemed like it was better used for target practice or sculpture than eating. Well in the last year my whole thinking has changed!!!! It all started last summer when my husband brought one home from a cousin who grew it on his farm. I knew it was a generous gift  but I was irritated by it and stuck it in the fridge and was sad because it took up half of the lower shelf and would probably rot. However, after a day of thinking about it I decided to give it a chance. Boy am I glad I did!!  I am a huge fan now. I have 3 great ways to use watermelon and can't wait to plant a patch of them and use them.

PS I still don't like eating it by the slice: )

First, juicing watermelon is simply amazing. You get a ton of juice from a small section and it runs through the juicer without much pulp or cleaning required. It is a wonderful deep pink color and extremely refreshing over ice. It is a nutritious and energy packed afternoon snack. I played around with a few different recipes and this was my favorite:

Juice the watermelon with a 1 inch slice of ginger. Once you have juiced enough  16-32 ounces of juice add frozen or fresh blueberries, 1-2 tsp of lemon juice  and ice. This will vary according to taste but I put about 1/4 cup of blueberries per 16 ounces  and just a few ice cubes to make it cold but not slushy. This is hands down my favorite juice. As pleasing to the eye as the palate.


My second favorite way to use watermelon and my husbands favorite it to dehydrate it. He loved taking a few pieces a day to work. So what I did was this. I take the whole watermelon and cut off each end and cut the rest into 1 inch slices. It takes a little practice but what I ended up with was what looked like round watermelon plates. Then I layed each of these down and sliced it into triangles. I would take each triangle and I cut off the outer edge of the green rind. Don't remove the seeds. I took these triangles and layed them on a few drying trays and let them dehydrate at 115 degrees for a day or two until they were completely dry and leathery. It was fun to watch the transformation as the water dehydrated out of each piece. Once dried I put them in a glass jar. My husband compares the taste to taffy. The cool part is that as they dehydrate the seeds become brittle and edible so you can eat every part. You end up having what looks like pizza. Kids love this.


The final way I use watermelon is to freeze it. This is an easy and a great way to add it to juices throughout the winter. I like to take fresh apple ginger juice and add some frozen watermelon. Crazy to drink while it is snowing outside though the ginger adds warmth.

I take the watermelon and cut the red part into 1 inch cubes. If I see any seeds I just knock them off with my knife. This gets most of the seeds since the cubes are so small. A seedless watermelon would be easier. Place the cubes on a cookie sheet so they aren't touching and freeze them in the freezer. Once frozen I put them in a bag. This method keeps them from sticking together. Kids love this snack. My niece came for a visit and I think her son had a cube in each hand almost nonstop. He kept going to the freezer and pointing to let us know he wanted more. Check each piece for seeds if giving to a little child. It does start to melt but watermelon juice is not hard to clean up and is better than sticky sugary snacks. I remember around February digging through my freezer looking for one more bag of frozen watermelon for a drink and being disappointed that there was no more. Never thought that would be me.

So, though I never thought I would agree with Mark Twain, I understand him now. He said, " When one has tasted watermelon he knows what the angels eat." Right on!!

                                                                           Nutrition in Watermelon

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