Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Pizza Hummus

Hummus is a staple in this household. We just love it! It works great to spread on quesadillas or sandwiches. Makes a great dip for veggies or chips. Add oil and lemon juice for a thick salad dressing. Dress up deviled eggs. Eat simply on crackers.
There are a couple recipes out there for pizza hummus but I found them lacking. A good strong balsamic vinegar changes all that. It adds a little tang and a depth that others don't.
The nutritional yeast is a great addition, making it taste velvety and delicious. It's a great dose of B Vitamins and can be beneficial for breastfeeding moms.

Making your own hummus is a boon on the wallet. Plus this makes plenty to share!

Pizza Hummus
2 cups dried garbanzo beans
2 tsp basil
3/4 tsp oregano
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/4 cup nutritional yeast
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
5 oz organic tomato paste or 1/3 cup packed sundried tomatoes (soaked)
3 cloves garlic
1. Soak the garbanzo beans overnight or at least 12 hours (we like to soak 24 hours). Rinse the beans and cover with atleast two inches of water. Boil beans until cooked. Drain, reserving some liquid.
2. Combine all ingredients in a large bowl and blend with an immersion blender (like this smart stick on amazon). Add reserved garbanzo bean liquid to thin if desired. Enjoy!

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Shamrock Shake with Peppermint Herb aka Peppermint Chocolate Shake

Skip the extracts and go straight to the herb source. Peppermint!  As much as I'd like to use fresh, that is not possible in the beginning of March (I seriously need a green house). So instead we used dried. I buy my herbs from Mountain Rose Herbs.

I used cut & sifted peppermint. If using ground peppermint herb, start with 1 tsp. If using fresh peppermint leaf, try a handful fresh and move up from there.
Usually associated with candy canes and toothpaste, peppermint has a lot of wonderful herbal properties. The smell alone can enhance alertness and memory. The peppermint herb can help with stomach upset, gas, colic, nausea, and headaches. Rosemary Gladstar calls peppermint "a blast of pure green energy" in her book Herbal Recipes for Vibrant Health (page 356). Also Demetria Clark, another Master Herbalist, writes in her book Herbal Healing for Children that peppermint is gentle enough for most children's conditions. It's a gentle energy! Just like a walk in nature.
Peppermint is a staple in my herbal apothecary. I like to add it to my mineral-rich herbal teas for better flavor. We drink an infusion of peppermint with thyme and honey for sore throats. I drink an infusion for headaches particularly one from eating dairy or nasal congestion. If heading to bed, I like to add valerian to the infusion. For a delectable treat like tea, I brew the infusion with dried vanilla bean pods and add honey or stevia.
Peppermint is a great choice for a container garden as some of likened the herb to a weed - it's growth is more easily managed if planted in a pot.

I hope you enjoy this delectable and refreshing milkshake-like treat.

And Happy Saint Patrick's Day! What delicious green-inspired recipes will you be making? Three years ago, we made Egg in a Clover. And last year, we made 2-Ingredient Green Ice Cream.

Peppermint Chocolate Shake aka Shamrock Shake with Peppermint Herb
4-6 tsp peppermint,  dried, cut & sifted*
Seeds from 1/3 Vanilla Bean**
2 cups coconut milk
2 frozen bananas
1 oz dark chocolate
Large handful fresh spinach or kale

Blend all ingredients in blender. Serves 2-3.
* Peppermint from Mountain Rose Herbs.

Purveyors of fine herbal products
**I buy really juicy and plump Premium Bourbon-Madagascar Vanilla Beans from Amazon (link here).
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And last but not least, I'm not a doctor. I'm not licensed to diagnose or prescribe. This is for educational purposes only. This information has not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This information is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. Use information at your discretion, taking into account medical history. Always research!
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