Product Review: White Wizard and Oxo-Brite…


Don’t you love the look of this? Haha. I love all things vintage, and this looks so 1950’s, ’60s to me. doesn’t it, though? Those  colors, too :)Even their site looks cheesy 😀 I love it!

So, does it work? Answer: A BIG YES! Shockingly, it does. Lookee here…

Carpet stain of who-knows-what…

Just a dab of White Wizard — not even rubbed in with any significant pressure — and within seconds…A closeup shot; you can see just a shadow of the stain…

… which disappeared a minute later. I couldn’t find the spot.

It’s a nice thick paste that’s not messy-ish.

Ahh, the panacea ;). While I cannot attest to all the claims on the label, but for spots on carpet — and, by the way, that stain was months old (I know I know) — it most certainly has wizar-ed its way into my heart.

Here’s another thing: This little container is years old! I bought this I-don’t-know-how-long-ago, opened it, used it for something, and haven’t seen it since! It reappeared and I thought I’d give it a shot. I  actually despise carpet, and have lived without it mostly; but have some at the moment in a few rooms. Ugh.

Favorite thing about this, too, is “Water Not Required”! Yay. something about dragging out a bucket of water, gloves, a sponge, some wet rags, some dry rags, yada-yada…just a big ta-do. Anyway, obviously this is for spot cleaning. For bigger jobs…

I picked up this Oxo-Brite which, I assume is an offshoot of the famed  “Oxy-Clean” product. It’s touted as a laundry additive, but I got it to try for my carpets since the back label …

said it works for them, which is what I was hoping.

This is also very good; however, it does produce a bleaching-type action; so it will “whiten” what you put it on, so be aware of that. For example, on a colored carpet or upholstery, it will, itself make a spot that you wouldn’t want. I would be cautious about using this on upholstery other than something that had a white background which needed brightening, and would be prepared to do the ENTIRE piece/area for uniformity.

I tried to get a shot of my carpet, but it doesn’t show up too well in my pics…

Small pics show it best; here’s another look…

Can you see? Well, trust me, there is a very noticeable cleaned spot. I am planning on cleaning my whole carpet, so this isn’t an issue, but, for spot cleaning, I’ll stick to the Wizard and use this for cleaning the entire carpet.

I used it for laundry, and it was so-so. It did brighten, but so far, none of the natural products I’ve tried are comparable to bleach, which is best not used at all.

So to sum up: White Wizard – Excellent at spot removal

Oxy-Brite – So far, great as a carpet cleaner; good choice for a safe “bleach.” As well, the product does say it works on laundry over time.

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Okay, on to more important things….

Greeeeeeeeeeeeen Things 😉


Today’s Green Juicie Green Smoothie was

Loaded ! 😀

Black Beauties…


Kohlrabi Greens

Strawberries:

Baby Choi

Oh, and nothin’ could be fin-a than to be with Spirulina in the mo-oh-oh’nin’..


Nut’n could be sweeta than this juicy green one-lita in the mo-oh-oh’nin’


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*A-hem* Okee Dokey, back to our regularly scheduled program…

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Pineapple…transforms any smoothie into an exotic nutritarian’s libation…

Mmmmm…Dandelions

Kumquats (ooh, remember the mania):

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While blendin’ with my swirlie, I spied a  pearly wormy  in the mo-OH-OH- ninYikes! Glad it was earleh in the morn…whew


Make sure to wash your greenies or you’ll  be wastin’ good time wishin’ in the moh-oh-ohnin’

Eek, sorry. I now predict you will not get that tune out your head 😛
Back to business…
Dino Kale, upon which our unfortunate wormy friend dared to feast…

And last but not least…Ginger
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…If I had Aladdin’s lamp for only a day I’d make a wish and here’s what I’d say:

Oh, Nothing could be fina than  GREENS  for yours and mina in da mohhhhh-rning. :D

Oh, heck, sing it with me, Y’All

Dreaming was meant for nighttime,
I live in dreams all the day;
I know it’s not the right time,
But still I dream away.
What could be sweeter than dreaming,
Just dreaming and drifting away

Strix

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What Is It?

Okay, so what is it?

Ahh, beautiful and sun-like!

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Bathe in the beauty…

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Ack! What the..??

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Reminds me of that great Twilight Zone episode, no?

Hm…kinda wormy…

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*…tentacles??!

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*long litter fellers…

She breaches!!

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Oh. No, guess not …

Eeoow!

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*They are multiplYING……….

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Okay, you probably have it now, right? 🙂

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Ah, the turmeric! Fresh — there’s nothin’ like it!

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That is the real color, yes it is! No photoshoppery  needed 😉

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*I ould just look at the stuff all day and feel brighter! 😀

Slice it…it freezes well, too…

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Chop it up!

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use it in cultured veggies — oooooh 😉 (Teach Me, Alice 😉


Dehydrate it….

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Ground it…

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*Make mustard! 😉 Nothin’ like custom made mustard — no salt necessary!

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*Basically, use it to flavor any dish. Of course, your Indian or curry flavored dishes will taste that much better with fresh turmeric!

It boasts some benefits, but has cautions, too. (Always do research if you have a condition, are taking medications before consuming a new herb; consult your doctor.)

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whew! Reveling in rhizomes is tiring stuff. So…how about a cuppa? Cup of turmeric tea, that is 😀

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Turmeric Tea

2  cups water
1 tsp fresh grated ginger, (or galangal 😉 ) Or more to taste – I like more (or 1/2 teaspoon fresh, powdered)
1 tsp fresh grated turmeric or juice (or 1/2 teaspoon fresh powdered turmeric)
Stevia, to taste (or 1 tablespoon sweetener of choice)
Juice of 1/2 lemon (or lime, other citrus; etc.)

For fresh, bring water to a boil, pour over fresh rhizomes and steep 10-15 minutes or to taste. Strain. Add Lemon and sweetener.

For dried, bring water to a boil, then add powdered herbs. Simmer for 10 minutes.
Strain  and sweetener and citrus to taste.

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And, of course, we all know…

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*Uh, just gorgeous, no?

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Very fresh or young ginger is often referred to as blue ginger or Thai ginger. Too many names! Galangal is also  “blue ginger.”

If you happen across these rhizomes, try them!  😀

Strix

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What Is It?

Yep, another alien-looking thingy

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Hmmm…interesting face…a beak?

galangal_fresh-26Is that one or two creatures?

galangal_fresh-251One growing out of the other?!

Okay, you get the idea…

galangal_fresh

galangal_fresh-18Now you got it!

Galangal!

My first date with galangal was at a restaurant I loved back in my late-night partying days (pfft!) It was a place to go and have the best ever Asian fusion food; but it was mainly a Thai food restaurant. I was mystified by the flavor of my favorite soups — “What IS that flavor?!!” Granted, it was the combination of authentic ingredients. But if galangal is missing, you will notice a Thai  recipe is just not right…even if delicious, that something missing closes the deal :). That’s galangal. Ginger is often used in its stead; though, I guess it’s like the difference using lemon in place of lemongrass — you’d know! I didn’t make the connection back then; there are so many ingredients that go into making excellent Thai food.

Galangal has some benefits associated with it, such as being a good digestive aid; and claims of other health benefits. It has the same benefits of ginger — digestive, flatulence, headaches, metabolism booster, anti-inflammatory properties, etc., and few of its own! Every page I’ve read on galangal mentions its usage as an aphrodisiac: galangal combined with lime (another favorite of mine!) is used as a tonic. I can vouch for its deliciousness, if not that specific perk ;). Limeade with galangal is good stuff.

galangal_jar-21-copyBut of course, it’s about the flavor. It’s peppery and spicy. I understand the comparison to ginger, but it’s almost an injustice.  Galangal is ginger’s cousin, but is its own flavor. It seems lighter and refreshing, cool and crisp with a strong floral accent and hint of citrus. It is very unique. I am so a fan :D.

It’s more readily available dried; though try to get the freshest bottle. I’m surprised that the dried tastes similar to the fresh, unlike ginger. It is concentrated, but the flavor is the same. At least, if you try dried galanagal, you will get the essence of its constituents. It does degrade in flavor rapidly after being ground, I understand; so fresh is best. If you only have access to dried, try to get dried pieces and ground it yoursel.

Galangal goes by various names — kha, qulanjan, gao-liang-jiang, laos root, Thai Ginger, Blue Ginger, and many others. There are also two types — Greater galangal and lesser galangal. Huh?! Well, the greater galangal is what I got. To add to the confusion, there are two rhizomes referred to as “lesser galangal”. They are different rhizomes, but still related. Further, there is conflicting information on which is which and I’ve read descriptions for greater galangal applied to lesser, and vice versa. I’ve yet to compare them; so can’t provide a flavor description, much less any botanical information, being nowhere near an expert!

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I found this galangal rhizome hard! Wow, I had to use all my body weight to cut that sucker! Tough, much more so than ginger, which I don’t find difficult to slice. It’s very woody. It looks very dry, and it is, much more than fresh ginger; though, it may be that this is because this was an older rhizome, though fresh.

I like its glossy sheen skin which is very thin; reminds of young ginger. Like ginger, the smaller, younger rhizomes are best. Since this galangal I bought was fresh, I am assuming it was grown here in California. Some are imported from Thailand, but would be found frozen. These are said to be superior in flavor; I don’t doubt it! Even if some flavor is lost in transport and through freezing, it’s still worth trying. I’m on the hunt for that next! If I’m lucky enough to find a very young galangal, I read I could plant it and have beautiful, fragrant flowers along with my very own supply of the rhizome! Would love to try that.

When I juiced it, the flavor was strong. It’s like ginger in this sense. Basically, small amounts needed. I love it in my GJGS’s (green juicie green smoothies).

My cultured veggies (Click Me, Alice 😉 )

Rediscovering galangal has been a tasty venture, even with my limited use thus far — green smoothies, cultured vegetables, limeade, ptisan, ice cubes, and a couple of dressings (that needs work!) — but now that I have fresh galangal, the taste is ripe for ice cream and, slushies! I’m looking forward to it. So many fruits would go well with a bit of galangal — anywhere ginger would go, and maybe some places even ginger can’t 🙂 I am going to add it to fruit salads this summer as well as bean salads for picnicking and other barbecue gatherings; I think that unique flavor will shine :D. It’s classic with coconut; and as a coconut lover, I’m looking forward to coming up with something using both.

If you make slaw, add some galangal, or even ginger 🙂

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I made a warm “tea” of galangal one winter morning. The boiling water poured over the grated rhizome brought out a great aroma and flavor.

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It’s always much stronger than I think it will be! I let it steep 10 minutes. So good. Needs no sweetening, but tastes good with it too. The mild sweet flavor is first, with a little bit of a citrus note, which surprised me! Then the spicy hits the back of the throat, all the while the fragrance is romancing you. I loved it. I decided a hint of ginger sounded good —

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galangal_ptisan-3-copyOh, yes, it’s good :). I think it’s better than ginger alone; I think galangal may have ruined me for ginger tea!

My fingers smelled good; I wonder if I can find galangal essential oil?  It would be great in a fragrance. Ah, yes, Mountain Rose Herbs comes through again! Next order 😉

My breath smelled great too. It reminded me of drinking fine jasmine green tea and how it sweetened my breath; I think I’ll add some jasmine petals and give it a try.

This is making me wish I actually needed to drink more, haha. With Eat To Live style of eating, one needs little to no additional drinking. BUT, come Summertime, I do drink more 😉

I decided to make some galangal and galangal-ginger ice cubes.  I’ve done the same with ginger and other herbs. I will be sipping some ptisan or lemon-limeade, spiked with galangal ice cubes soon 😉 Maybe some Thai basil used like mint would be nice and refreshing. Gonna try that.

Next time you’re in a Southeast Asian market (or any) or a specialty foods market they just may have some fresh galangal — oh, and check the frozen section — Try some  🙂

If you ever come across these rambunctious rhizomes, try them!:D

Strix

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Try Something New…

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Beautiful Blue Poppy Seeds

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Sesame Milks

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The Gold…

Ever had sesame milk? Why not try something new?! 🙂 May surprise you.


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Calcium rich, sesame milks are an excellent nightcap 😀 Who needs “a glass of warm COW milk?!!? Do you really want that? Eeeoow Double YUK! Hip, hip, Hurray for sesame milk, a great alternative 🙂 It’s soothing and So nutritious. Calcium is great before bed, as it aids in sleep (and mental health through seratonin production!) Tryptophan seems to be key — if you have trouble getting those Z’s, have a couple of walnuts with that milk 😉 Sesame seeds are rich in methionine and tryptophan, and are 25% protein. Good anytime, and in recipes, too,though! I tried it in my Indian Spiced Lentil Soup, and it was delicious.

Sesame milks are much more difficult to “perfect,” since the flavor is a pronounced one, and everyone’s palate is different. Experimentation is definitely advised! However, if you love tahini or sesame seeds, you’ll probably be a fan of sesame milk :). Alternatively, you may like to combine it withalmonds for a delicious combo, and a tempered “sesame” flavor.

sesame-mylk_brown_unhulled-2-copyI used to love the idea of sesame milks, but all the recipes called for way too much sesame, and the result, cloying, especially using the hulled seeds. I think the key with these nut and seed milks is finding the right ratio of seed to water. And, of course, we all have varying palates 🙂 so finding the right ratio for you is the real key. The brown, unhulled (with shells) must be soaked and rinsed to alleviate the bitter components in the hulls.

My experience has been that the following are well received by most everyone to whom I served them. You can, however, make these with less water; it’s then easier to just add water if it needs it. Folks unaccustomed to natural flavors find sesame strong; but if you like sesame, by all means 😀

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Sesame Milk, unhulled

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1/4 C unhulled, organic Brown Sesame Seeds

Water for soaking

1 1/4 (or up to 2) C Water (I like 1 1/4 – 1 1/2 )

Soak Sesame seeds in water 4 hours. Drain.

Rinse well until water runs clear.

Place in a blender with 1/2 C water and blend till creamy.

Strain into a glass storage jar.

Add remaining water to the milk and mix well or shake.

Store, well-sealed in the refrigerator.  Shake well before using.

Makes 1 1/4 – 2 C

Lasts 3 or 4 days.

Notes:

Optionals: You can add sweetener (fresh date) or vanilla. A piece of banana is also very good here.

I  like it richer tasting, so you can try 1 C water; conversely, if it’s strong-tasting, adding more water, combining with another milk, or using optionals are all possibilities.

If you are in a big hurry or don’t mind that the seeds get slightly cooked, then you can pour hot or boiling water over the seeds, and let soak till cool. Then drain and rinse till water runs clear.

Alternatively, after soaking 4 hours (not the hot-water soak), you can sprout the sesame seeds for 24 hours to maximize nutrients. Do not sprout for longer than 36 hours or they get bitter. I usually do 24 or so. According to SproutPeople, they also do not store well; so use them up within 2 days.

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Straining sesame seeds through cheesecloth works well…

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~Beautiful and delicious!~

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And the Black...

Ever had black sesame? Hey, it’s ALL a crapshoot — why not just try something different? 😉

I love black sesame, and they are part of my regular fats rotation 😀

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Black Sesame – More nutrient-rich than white or brown! CalciYUM!

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Be more adventurous :D…

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Now that’s an NDE* nightcap 😉

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Midnight Milk

1/4 C Black Sesame Seeds

Water for soaking

1 1/4 – 2 C Water (I like  1 1/2-ish)

Soak Black Sesame for 4 hours. Drain and rinse well. (Sprout, if desired)

Combine Black Sesame and 1 C water in a blender. Blend on “High” till thoroughly creamy.

Strain into a glass storage jar. Add remaining water and mix well.

Shake well before using.

Makes 1 1/4 – 2 C

Optionals: Sweetener of choice; Vanilla to taste

I also like this at about 1 1/4 -1 1/2 C water because I love the taste of black sesame; however, to some, it has a strong taste. You can try it with less water to start, then just add as you go. I found the up to 2 C to be acceptable to most people; you’ll have to just try it — your mileage may vary 😀 .

Try it warm; it’s delish.

And don’t forget, it’s easy-peasy to make your own tahini.

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Feeling even more adventurous?

How about Poppy Seed Milk?

I was pleasantly surprised when I attempted this “milk”; it’s delicious. It is often my go-to “milk. High in calcium, this is an excellent bedtime milk:

One Tablespoon Poppy Seeds contain 13% the Daily Value of CalciumWow!

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…an excellent “regular milk” substitute:

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Poppy Milk


1/4 C organic Poppy Seeds

Water to soak

1 C water

Soak seeds in water 4 hours.

Drain.

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Rinse well. Interesting color! 😀 Must be the anthocyanidins changing shades 😀 – (Save that Pulp!!)

Place in a blender with 1/2 C water and blend till creamy.

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Wasn’t sure my little Tribest Personal Blender would handle those teeny-tiny seeds, but, yep, it broke ’em up….however, I blended it a few minutes, and I did use the flat blade…

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Strain into a glass storage jar…

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,

I like to use my handmade tea bags (no waste!), but use these tea filters, too (although, these don’t work well with “fluffier” pulp); use cheesecloth, if you have it. The grainy little poppies are sand-like and the drainage is good. Here you see it oozing out the bag…

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squeezing out as much as possible.

BUT be careful! The tea bags are light and delicate; Don’t squeeze too hard or…

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…and you don’t want that pulp dropping back in to your milk 🙂 As much as I know this, I still get too rough with my poor seeds :D. (Wetting the filter bags first, before filtering, helps a lot.)

Add remaining 1/2 C water to the milk and mix well or shake.

This tastes best the following day, too. Makes 1 C of delicious, creamy white milk…

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I think this is better than cashew milk. Another surprise, it actually tastes better a couple days later.

Store, well-sealed in the refrigerator. Shake well before using.

Makes 1 C

Notes: This ratio of seed to water makes a milk suggestive of regular milk. I found the 1:4 seed to water formula to be excellent as a milk substitute. The poppy seed flavor is so mild, it’s undetectable and much lighter than I anticipated.

I also found it to not need anything added at all. Of course, optionals such as vanilla, or sweetening can always be used.

This would make a good base for any recipe calling for plain milk, since the taste is mild and more like “cow’s milk” (but trust me tastes better!)

A little aside: poppy seeds have a thickening quality! Very nice in dressings.

Important Note: I’ve read that poppy seeds do not contain opium and that they do contain trace amounts. From what I’ve read, it is within certain varieties, which are grown specifically for the drug.  However, either way, it’s only from the plant that the drug is made,and the seeds contain trace amounts only. And,  again, it’s possible that only a select type has it .

Poppy seeds do seem to possess “sedative” qualities, often recommended for insomnia (Walnuts and sesame are high in tryptophan, and also recommended as good sleep aids; so they could also be “sedative”). I’m not sure if this would even be true for so small amounts that one eas (as opposed to the type of poppy used medicinally). Please make a choice based on knowledge and thorough understanding; the consumption of this milk is your sole responsibility. False positive drug tests have been reported with ingestion of poppy seeds (similar to the false tests that hemp seeds can render); however, there is a specific tell-tale chemical, thebaine, which will be present only with ingestion of the seeds, so no need to worry 🙂

NOTE: I wouldn’t  serve this this children — just to be on the safe side; there are many other alternatives, anyway (After running this past Dr. Fuhrman he advised against serving a lot of poppy seeds to children; so this may be too-concentrated a source, I think; better to err on the side of caution) However, it certainly is “something new” and interesting to try for us responsible adults 😉

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Sweet Sesame Dreams 😉

sleep _ Strix

sm row smiles

*Nutrient Dense Eater 😉 – NDD– Nutrient Dense Diet

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