Quotes

Purple-Flower (5)

Once someone asked George Bernard Shaw how it was that he looked so youthful. “I don’t,” Shaw retorted. “I look my age. It is the other people who look older than they are. What can you expect from people who eat corpses?”

“We pray on Sundays that we may have light/To guide our footsteps on the path we tread;/We are sick of war, we don’t want to fight,/And yet we gorge ourselves upon the dead.”
George Bernard Shaw

One farmer says to me, “You cannot live on vegetable food solely, for it furnishes nothing to make the bones with”. And so he religiously devotes a part of his day to supplying himself with the raw material of bones; walking all the while he talks behind his oxen, which, with vegetable-made bones, jerk him and his lumbering plow along in spite of every obstacle.
Henry David Thoreau

“Flesh eating is simply immoral, as it involves the performance of an act which is contrary to moral feeling: killing. By killing, man suppresses in himself, unnecessarily, the highest spiritual capacity, that of sympathy and pity towards living creatures like himself, and by violating his own feelings becomes cruel.”
Leo Tolstoy

People often say that humans have always eaten animals, as if this is a justification for continuing the practice. According to this logic, we should not try to prevent people from murdering other people, since this has also been done since the earliest of times.
Isaac Bashevis Singer

“For my part I rather wonder both by what accident and in what state of mind the first man touched his mouth to gore and brought his lips to the flesh of a dead creature, set forth tables of dead, stale bodies, and ventured to call food and nourishment the parts that had a little before bellowed and cried, moved and lived. How could his eyes endure the slaughter when throats were slit and hides flayed and limbs torn from limb? How could his nose endure the stench?

How was it that the pollution did not turn away his taste, which made contact with sores of others and sucked juices and serums from mortal wounds? It is certainly not lions or wolves that we eat out of self-defense; on the contrary, we ignore these and slaughter harmless, tame creatures without stings or teeth to harm us. For the sake of a little flesh we deprive them of sun, of light, of the duration of life to which they are entitled by birth and being.”
Plutarch in his essay ‘On Eating Flesh’

If you declare that you are naturally designed for such a diet, then first kill for yourself what you want to eat. Do it, however, only through your own resources, unaided by cleaver or cudgel or any kind of ax.”
Plutarch

It is only by softening and disguising dead flesh by culinary preparation that it is rendered susceptible of mastication or digestion, and that the sight of its bloody juices and raw horror does not excite intolerable loathing and disgust.
Percy Bysshe Shelley, Queen Mab Notes.

Cruelty to animals is as if man did not love God.”
Cardinal John H. Newman

“Man did not weave the web of life: he is merely a strand in it. Whatever he does to the web, he does to himself. To harm the earth is to heap contempt on its creator.”
A Native American Chief (1854)

via Vegetarian quotes

Strix

ETL Friday! Jacob’s Journey…

Hi, All, Jacob shares how he gained his life back when he decided to take control and gain his health!

Here’s Jacob’s inspiring story of commitment and reward(s) ๐Ÿ™‚

I have always struggled with my weight. Well, struggled is probably not the right word. Back when I weighed 275pounds, and during my whole climb up there, I did not fight the gain, I just let it happen.I always knew I was fat and it made me depressed and really damaged my confidence.

Finally, once I capped out at my highest weight, I decided to do something about it. I started to cut out some of the most calorically dense foods in my diet and lost about twenty or twenty-five pounds; quickly, though, I hit a standstill.

Being that this was a point in my life where changes were being made, I decided to become a vegetarian for ethical reasons. As I cut out animal products, my weight began to drop a bit. Then, I started looking into veganism and came across a website called VeganBodybuilding.com, where I learned about Dr. Fuhrman and also saw many fit and buff vegan athletes.

I appreciate fit bodies and always have, but always thought it impossible for me to have one. I began to believe I could and realized that a vegan diet and the nutritarian way are both great tools for going about this. I implemented some nutritarian concepts and began my journey into veganism.

My weight plummeted and I felt more energetic than I ever have. I stayed at my pseudo-nutritarian diet for a couple of years or so, hitting another standstill after dropping down to 160 pounds, then back up to 180 or so hovering around there for awhile.

After some frustration with my weight again, I decided to adopt the nutritarian lifestyle completely. I stopped eating several small meals a day and switched to three per day with an after workout green smoothie, as well as another green smoothie in the morning. My weight dropped down to 165, my leanest weight yet. At this time, I had more muscle than when I weighed 160, so I looked a lot better.

Also, depression has always been a struggle for me, but when I finally went full-Fuhrman, it went away completely. I am content with myself and my life almost constantly now and each day is a joy and adventure.

The nutritarian diet helped me far beyond just losing weight. My sexual endurance and desire also increased, almost too much, if I do say so myself.

My weight no longer fluctuates and I do not have to watch a scale anymore. Now, if only the lifestyle could do something about excess skin. In time, maybe…

Thanks, Jacob, for showing us how commitment and stick-to-it-iveness leads to rewards beyond expectations.

Personally, I relate a lot to your allusion to contentment: That is often a word I use to describe my sense of peace and satiety with life.

Continued success and more rewards to you! Here’s to healthy body, mind, and soul.

Greens ‘n’ Cheers! ๐Ÿ˜€

Feel free to contact me ๐Ÿ™‚ and contribute to ETL Friday! and inspire Us!

Strix

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What Is It? And, Why You, TOO Should Street-Walk Hollywood & Sunset

A_ (2)

I LOVE L.A. Yes, I do. Say what you will about it — and you will be oh-so right — but living in Southern Cali is like no other for the stunning variety of food one can obtain and locally, reducing your chances of contributing to human exploitation (which is ALL around us). Yes, the Farmers of L.A. are awesome, friendly, and generous.

I often mention that I am “Sooooooo lucky!” and, wow, even I marvel sometimes at my good fortune! To have such excellent food at my leisure…it should be this way for every living being on this planet.

Whether you live in L.A. or are visiting, check out a few — at least — of the some of the best So. California has to offer. If you happen to be cruisin’ down Sunset, step on over to the Sunday morning festival that is (just one of) the Hollywood Farmer’s Market(s).

Okay, SO…What is it? ๐Ÿ™‚

Raw_Green_ (12)

*

A-a (24)

Mm, awful purty!

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Little fuzzy, aye? ๐Ÿ™‚

A_ (18)

Any ideas yet?

Raw_Green_ (32)

Ah, hangs out with some friends…on a vine…

Raw_Green_ (31)

C’mon, you green thumbers out there! Ever grown these in yer garden?

A_ (11)

Okay, let’s crack ‘er open…

A_ (22)

She breaches!

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*

A_ (34)

Okay, NO, it’s not my brain…

A_ (26)

Though, I bet mine is greeeeeeeeeeeeeeen!ย ย  alien

A_ (25)

Oh, wait…ANOTHER shell??

A_ (33)

Okay, totally nude, you HAVE to know, now…No? ๐Ÿ˜‰

A-a (2)

Yes, Yes!!!

A_ (35)

You got it! Fresh, raw incredibly DELICIOUS Garbanzo Beans!! banana-banjo

Got’em at the farmers’ market! Still on the vines WOW! Forget the Lakers‘ slam dunk — this is a SCORE!!!!grn-wink

Here is a pod holding 2 little ‘peas:

Raw_Green_ (5)

This one was interesting; it had one that was drying out already!

A-a (42)

I was kind of expecting it to be more flavorful, more savory; but, instead it had very little flavor at all. What a shame ๐Ÿ™‚

A-a (43)

Still purty, tho ๐Ÿ˜‰

Where I first learned that they even existed was at a Whole Foods in the refrigerated section, several years ago. I fell in LOVE with them! I recall trying to convince my fellow raw-foodie enthusiasts at the time they existed, but was met with a lot of dismissive resistance! Hmph. Okay, so more for me, Nyahh ๐Ÿ˜› Since that first time, I’ve not found them as often as I’d like; especially since I eat mostly raw. Now they are becoming more known as the blogosphere indicates!

Back to my Sunday …

So as the sun was waning, I took my bag O’ magic beans, and out to the patio…

Bean_Bag (27)

for some chick pea pickin.’

~~~ Ahh, yes, just like back in the old country, I do recall ~~~

Just kidding, lol Beans_Peas_pod

So we talked and picked…

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Rambled with hands busy…

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and picked….

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and reminisced some more…

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and the bowl was filling up nicely…

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…till my bowl runneth over…

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…almost ๐Ÿ˜‰ And while I cannot claim any “old country,” to my memoirs, relaxing, sharing, and picking over fresh legumes is quite enjoyable, and I now know why it’s so customary in some cultures to engage in such activity ๐Ÿ™‚ What a wonderful Sunday afternoon!

That evening, as every, I feasted! We feasted on fresh chick peas, fresh, first-of-season’s-sweet tomatoes (OH LORD, watch out!! I’ll be consuming loads of these cherry-sweet tomatoes through October!)

Tomatoes_FM

a few other simple foods (I won’t bore you further with the details ๐Ÿ™‚ ), all fresh from the farmers’ market.

And All was well with the world. ๐Ÿ™‚

~ *** ~

Speaking of the advantages of living in California, I have also the good fortune to have lived in various neighborhoods around Los Angeles, all rich with different ethnicities; ways; and customs. Flourishing and bringing life, culture, and wonderful experiences to us natives, they have contributed so much to Us All ๐Ÿ™‚ One such neighborhood had various Peoples from the region of the Middle East — O, the food! The markets! The colors! I recall running past many a group of two or more elderly women, dressed in traditional clothes, obviously brand new to this country, speaking and laughing in their native tongues. Along side them, large, old wooden buckets filled with some vegetable or other… They shelled and trimmed as they socialized, right there in their front yards;ย  no doubt a custom.

SO, my bowl full…

A-a (65)

…my heart and soul too :D, and I am grateful — and…

Sooooooooooooooo lucky!!! ๐Ÿ˜€

A-a (24)

So you can’t get these locally, you say? ๐Ÿ˜ฆย  Well…

I am so excited to see these *FINALLY* catching on. Trader Joe’s had/has them every-so-often, shelled, in frozen bags, then — pOOf! Gone! One of things about TJ’s I don’t like ๐Ÿ˜ก

There is a brand which is making itself more available around the U.S., “CaliFresh.” You can see they are in several chain markets — click here for those — so, “Yay” for that!! Even though not organic, you may want to give them a try. These are also available in Mexican markets, again, not organic, but why not try some? OR, heck, if you’re into gardening, how about trying to grow your own?! I’d love to. I’ve grown green peas and I can only hope fresh garbanzos would be so ridiculously easy! Those peas, by the way, were the BEST EVER, as I imagine your own,ย  home-grown foods are ๐Ÿ˜‰

A-a (34)I found fresh to freeze well too. Some may prefer a quick steam, unless one is accustomed to the taste of, say, raw peas — then the raw chickpeas would be quite enjoyable. Either way, it can hardly be argued that these are not the freshest chickpeas you have ever eaten! They are, to my delight, Greeeeeeeeeeeeen ๐Ÿ™‚ And a gorgeous green!

If you can find these at a farmer’s market, grab ’em. The worst that can happen is that you end up blending them into a green smoothie — now how’s that for tipping the odds? But trust me —ย  You will love these whether steamed or raw. Bean salad anyone?

A-a (47)The flavor, by the way, is much milder than any other raw legume. It has a nuttiness to it which is faintly reminscent of the dried cooked you know so well; however, this is just straight out unique tasting — highly enjoyable. Can you tell I like ’em? That familiar “raw” taste is also not dominant like so many raw peas and beans; these are softer than you will probably be expecting. Loads of flavor; no spicing required.

To cook these are also quite enjoyable, as it takes mere minutes to simply steam — Yep, minutes! And so delectable. Much like fava beans — another utterly delicious bean fresh, look for them and GET SOME — the quick cooking is a nice change. I have always loved my summer bean salads with fresh favas. DElicious, I promise you!

A_ (32)These green chick peas can be eaten and served just like you would edamame — either in their pods, or shelled — depending how you find them. I prefer in their pods, but shelled are great too. Just steam them or you can drop them in boiling water for a few minutes, if you like. No salt needed, these are delish on their own; however, spicing them, of course, gives you much more variety and you can prepare delectable little delights with the simplicity and ease of marinating in various spice blends.

Seriously, I’ll say it again: I don’t know anyone who eats better than I do _lol.ย  And you can feel that way too! ๐Ÿ˜€ The changing of the tastebuds is one of the more dramatic results from eating healthfully and abstaining from salt, and chemically-flavored and processed “stuff” often labeled as “food.” I’ve never eaten better in my life, not only nutritionally but also taste-wise.

I mentioned this before also: When you are willing to give up the foods you (think you) love, crave, “can’t do without forever,” you GAIN so much more! ๐Ÿ˜€ I promise!

Okay, I’m storing up:Garbanzos_Fresh_in-pods

I’m loading up on these babies to take me through the off season —ย  into the fridge, and into the freezer, sealed extra well for long storage. ๐Ÿ˜€

A-a (69)

So look for these! It’s that time of the year — Right Now! Go get some! Eat simply. No need for complicated meals! Try them in recipes or plain — Mmmmm, fresh chick peas! Give ’em a try!

Strix

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Sesame Butter/Tahini Redux…

I tried making tahini with unhulled sesame seeds in my 2007 VitaMix. Disaster. I literally spent 46 minutes — yes, I timed it — trying to get it to work, continually scraping and blending, etc.

Here are some pictures on how to easier identify hulled from unhulled:

white-hulled-sesame-seeds_ (12) - Copy

“hulled,” “shelled,” white sesame seeds

Brown_sesame-seeds_unhulled_soaked - Copy

“unhulled”, “unshelled,” “whole” “brown” sesame seeds

**

white-hulled-sesame-seeds_ (8)Hulled sesame seeds have their outer shells removed. They are sometimes referred to as just sesame seeds or as “white” sesame seeds. This makes the smoothest butter, or “tahini,” and is what is most often found creamed, jarred in stores.

sesame-seeds_quarter-cup (3)Unhulled sesame seeds maintain their shells. Referred to as “brown” sesame seeds or “whole” sesame seeds. More nutritious than white, they also carry a bit of bitterness from their shells. Rinsing and draining alleviates much of that tannic flavor.

The third type of sesame, is the beautiful black

Black-Sesame-Seeds_quarterC (6) - Copy

Black sesame is the most nutritious of the three. It tastes slightly different; some think it’s stronger.

**

tahini_homeprepared_white-sesame

Hulled sesame butter is easy peasy and is actually done quite easily in a food processor, as I demonstrated previously. Above, you see it makes a nice thick butter. The easy flowing tahinis you find in stores have oil added.

Unhulled, with the VitaMix, proved more difficult (The following were unhulled, soaked, with and without added water):

tahini-Brown_fini (3)

This is actually not too bad even with quite a bit of texture; but it still has a lot of whole seeds.

Even tried with unhulled black sesame seeds (VitaMix):

black-sesame-scrape-blender (6)

Tried with my dependable Blendtec…

black_4

Nope…

black_12

Still lots of whole seeds thatย  just don’t want to blend!

However, the good news is, it’s not really so big a deal to have some texture,ย  depending on your recipe. You can still use these chunky butters! If, for example, you are making a dressing or hummous, it will blend up quite nicely with the other ingredients, and it seems to lose its texture. I made aย  dressing with it and it came out smooth.ย  But this shows why the nut and seed butters in stores contain added oil — though they do not have to list it as an ingredient — they need it to get that creamy smooth texture. It’s a similar process with my precious, beloved ๐Ÿ™‚ย  coconut BUTTER (It is not oil ย though Artisana says they do not add oil to theirs),ย  oil is added to coconut and other butters in order to cream them because some are VERY, VERY fibrous; and it is impossible to get a creamy emulsionย  simply blendingย  (confirmed via email on several brands, despite how the advertising “sounds”) I’d like to try, however, in my juicer sometime…hmmm…:)

Next, I decided, against the odds, to give the processor a try

10

No go ๐Ÿ˜ฆ

*

~ My recommendation is to not add water or liquids to any, which includes not using wet, soaked seeds ~

The water diminishes the flavor and, in my opinion, does something…well, weird ๐Ÿ˜‰ to the texture.

*

Okay, now here’s the zinger —

Tribest_personal-blender (3)

My little Personal Blender did a better job!

Check it out…

Results for unsoaked, unhulled dry brown sesame seeds…

brown-sesame_tahini_sm-blender_no-soak_fini (3)

Pretty darn good! Whoa, much better than the power blenders. No whole seeds left in just a few minutes of blending!

Of course, it makes small amounts only. This is actually better, in my opinion, because it’s not good to keep buttered seeds and nuts stored for long periods anyway. This way, you can make and use small amounts and not have to pay high prices for a large jar, when you only really need small amounts.

The Personal Blender, aka “Tribest Personal Blender” is similar to a “Magic Bullet” and other such small blenders. They are even less powerful than some coffee grinders! If you have such a blender or smallย  grinder give it a try.

flat-blade_blender~ Be sure to use the flat blade for buttering. ~

Now, don’t expect it to be exactly creamy smoothย  like the storebought UNLESS you add oil. And, really, unhulled seeds are, naturally never going to render as smooth as hulled because they have all their fiber in the stead of more seed and oil. Even my store-bought black tahini isn’t completely smooth, and, in fact, one manufacturer even states that because it is unhulled, it is not as smooth (can’t recall which brand that was).

~ * ~

NOW, I don’t particularly like the idea of not pre-soaking because there is the bitterness in the brown sesame hulls, which some don’t like (and which may contribute to inadequate absorption of its nutrients). So I thought I’d try soaking and sprouting to see if this improved the small blender tahini texturally and flavorwise.

The good news about sprouting sesame is that it takes only a few hours of soaking! SproutPeople instructs as short as 2 hours and up to 8. Since they are small, you don’t want to drown them ;). They also say that just the soak and allowing them to dry is enough to remove the enzyme inhibitors, meaning you don’t have to do the rinse, drain, rinse drain over days to get increased nutrition and remove most of the bitterness, and if you don’t want to sprout them. I decided to soak for 4 hours and sprout them at least a full day, then let them dry. (Note: white, hulled sesame seeds cannot be sprouted)

So it went like so:

Soak for 4 hours.

Drain, rinse; spread onto cheesecloth or other sprouting surface to sprout. Be sure if your surfaceย  has holes such as a mesh, they are not too large that the tiny sesame seeds fall through! You’ll be very frustrated (and curse me!) if you lose them all on the floor ๐Ÿ™‚

Rinse and drain as needed (depending on environmental/weather conditions) 2-4 or more hours till bedtime.

Just sprout until you see a tiny tail emerge or a small bud. They get bitter very quickly; so the smaller the sprout the better.

Let them dry out, and use right away, or store in the refrigerator and use within a couple days. You can also thoroughly dry them with a dehydrator and keep for long storage. I’d probably leave them in the fridge or freezer, but if *completely* dry can be kept in a cool, dry place.

*

Rinse

sesame_unhulled_rinse (2)

Soak for 4 hours…

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Drain

sesame-unhulled_drain

Then rinse well again.ย  Final drain….

Brown_sesame-seeds_unhulled_soaked (19)

Spread out to sprout for 24 hours or till tiny sprouts or buds appear…

Sesame_sprouts

Here’s a closeup…

Sesame_sprouts (9)

Cutie little sprouts! ๐Ÿ˜€

Same for the Black…

Rinse

black-sesame_rinse (2)

Soak

black_sesame_1-C_soak (5)

Drain

black-sesame_drain (3)

Lay out to sprout –here I used cheesecloth:

Black-Sesame_soaked_sprout_cheesecloth (3)

Rinse

black-Sesame_sprout_rinse_cheesecloth (2)

Sprout…

Black-sesame-seed_sprouts (4)

closer look :D…

Black-sesame-seed_sprouts (9)

Black Beauties!

Dry

After that final rinse, they should be left to dry out before blending or before storing.

If you wish to speed up drying after the last rinse, then you can put them outside (make sure it’s not windy!), covered, or in a place with good air flow. I like to dry my sprouted seeds in the dehydrator at a very low temp — like 80- to 90-degrees — which is just quicker and more convenient.

Okey Dokey, now they’re ready! Let’s see what happens…

Into the small blender with the flat blade go they…

Blend ‘er up…

Couple a scrape downs…

and…

unhulled-sesame_sprouted_fini

Excellent! Within seconds, all the seeds are blended. They seem to have benefited from the sprouting process, as well: The taste was better, having rinsed and sprouted off the bitterness.

Only stones left unturned — I tell ya, this has been a pain! — now are, one, to try large batch of sprouted and dried seeds in the power blenders, and, two, giving the power juicer a whirl.

So here again are the keys to good-tasting, creamier unhulled sesame butter or tahini:

unhulled-sesame_sprouted_fini (2)

Organic, fresh whole unhulled seeds

Rinsing

Soaking

Sprouting*

Drying, thoroughly

Creaming in small batches

Using a small blender with the flat blade

*If you don’t want to sprout, it will still work (as I demonstrated above), following all the other steps, but will render a more “toothy,” textured butter: It will not leave any whole seeds.

There you go. Mystery solved ๐Ÿ™‚ The rinky-dink little blender out performs the power blenders! Enjoy your hulled white OR unhulled, brown, or black, home-prepared sesame butters and tahinis!

Strix

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LTL??

Laugh To Live ๐Ÿ˜€ย  I definitely subscribe to this one. I think, it’s something even children know, instinctively, if not intellectually. I mean, I certainly did ๐Ÿ˜€ It’s sad how we forget about our childhood wisdom. Good news is, wisdom is there and doesn’t just go away. It’s recoverable, I think! ๐Ÿ˜€ I sure can use all the wisdom I can get!

Good for the mood; and, reportedly good for health, literally! Cool Beans :D.

Live longer? Maybe. Forming positive, loving relationships can be key; if not, it certainly makes life more filled with joy — who wouldn’t want that? Yea, I’ll buy that ๐Ÿ˜‰

How can we add more humor and belly laughs to our lives?!

Here’s another to give you a chuckle today:

Now tell me you didn’t smile after these vids! ๐Ÿ˜‰

There is SO much to be worried about, so much to stress about, so much to be unhappy about — give yourself a break! How about actively seeking some good? Health is not just all about food! You know, sometimes all it takes is a smile. I’ve had my day made by a simple smile from a stranger. I try to do the same for others. Sometimes, when I’ve just smiled at someone, I see their entire face change! It looks as if a load has just been lifted from them. And I recognize it! I’ve felt that too. Have you? A simple smile ๐Ÿ™‚ Power!

Here are some things to read — just for giggles ๐Ÿ˜‰

What do you do for laughs? What makes you laugh? Please share! I can always use another laugh or smile!

Have a fabulous, silly, smiley-infused, laughable ( :D) day!

Strix

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