Sunday, May 15, 2011

You can't beat beets!

When I was a kid, I would gag and hurl my beets.  I hated beets.  Probably because my mom would try to hide thing in between cranberry slices.  I would be happily eating my cranberry and all of a sudden find the taste of a beet amongst them - yuck!  Although now days -- I might even create a cranberry beet recipe -- but that's for another time.

I am still in beet mode - roasting them in tin foil to preserve that earthy yet sweet taste.  Here is another awesome recipe for roasted beets using wild rice.

Into a bowl I tossed:

3 med sized roasted beets, diced
2 cups wild rice 
handful of dried cranberries
I had 2 tangerines so I peeled and separated them; Mandarin oranges would work; so would a navel orange - peeled and sliced
1 cup of shredded leaf lettuce
sesame seeds would be good (but on this cleanse, I left them out

Now - the dressing really kicks up the flavors and sends this salad into awesome category (just a notch down from orgasmic!)

Into a smaller bowl, I squeezed 2 oranges (using a mesh cup to catch the seeds)
2 T vinegar - I used my pomegranate balsamic, but red wine would work too - improvise!
1 T of toasted sesame oil (it must be the toasted kind, can't improvise here)
1 teaspoon hot sause
1 teaspoon finely minced ginger - in the produce section of my regular supermarket, I buy ginger in tubes (same for cilantro) just for these kinds of recipes.

Mix together and dress the salad.  I garnished mine with a lime slice and gave it a squeeze just as I was about to eat it.  With or without -- it's great!

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The Story Behind the Garden of Eden Vegan Blog

For those of you who knew me prior to December 30, 2009, I was a veteran of the fast food culinary institute. My son, when he lived with me would ask if I had ordered the "Shabbat pizza" yet as the sun was setting Friday nights.

My idea of a good meal was a McFish sandwich, fries with extra salt, and a medium diet coke.

Everything was better covered in a rich creamy sauce and the idea of a naked baked potato was as foreign to me as walking naked in Manhattan.

In June of 2009 I decided to formally become a vegetarian. Although I had dabbled with this, it was not until I read Skinny Bitch that the gauntlet was thrown.

Now being a vegetarian does not sign you up for good health. I was proof of that. Chubby when I started, I indulged in pizza, french fries, cheese, cheese, butter, cheese, pizza......and became very over weight, tipping the Toledos at 200 pounds at 5'4". And taking an assortment of meds for cholesterol and GERD and who knows what else.

As the decade was waning, and with my 60th birthday approaching in the year 2010, there was a perfect storm that snapped my beak and got me in gear. The same friend who gave me Skinny Bitch, turned me on to the John McDougall website. At the same time, there was a Grand Round lecture at the hospital where I work on the book Eat to Live, and at the same time, I was tired of how I looked and felt and needed to make a change.

I regret that I did not start this blog when I changed my lifestyle, but it is better late than never.

My weight is down about 35 pounds, my size has gone from a tight 16 to a loose 12. And I am on no meds, although my vegetarian doctor and I will review my blood work within this month to see if I need anything (like b12) boosted.

I began as a Vegan Minus. Or what I call a Garden of Eden Vegan.

As you know, a Vegan eats no animals nor animal products - none. But then I subtracted oil, sugar, and processed foods.

That is a big subtraction -- but it is this subtraction that helped with weight loss, lack of cravings, increased energy, health, and vibrancy.

Now I am dabbling in raw foods and have signed up to learn with Russell James (google him).

I like the taste and health aspect of raw foods, but worry about the increased calories. So I will (hopefully) use the raw creations as a supplement to my Gan (Hebrew for Garden -- I am in a Hebrew mood today) Eden Vegan lifestyle.

My doctor said that I should write a book about this since most of her patients need it. I said, "Who, or how many, would want to do this?" We shall see. It has been easy (no cravings) and exciting as life and energy unfold before me, just as it was meant to be. (It didn't unfold over a fried fish sandwich, extra tarter sauce.)

Join me or not. Walk with me the whole journey, day trips, part of it, or not. This is my 60th year -- buckle up life, here I come.