No Salt Seasoning…

 

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No-salt flavorings, powders, blends are really  hard to find — actually, GOOD ones are hard to find! Making your own, to your own tastes, suitable for various dishes is also good, but, for me can be difficult to make up on my own, as I go…it takes some experimenting with each flavor addition to get exactly the right amount of this or that. Accomplishing that for any one dish is challenging, but very rewarding (as long as you write it down!!)

 

 

 

A general all-purpose seasoning is probably harder. But I really find it invaluable because it can boost an already, specifically spiced dish and it can stand alone as a broth or stock

SO, all that to say, I’ve been recently using McCormick’s Perfect Pinch, Salt-Free Original, All Purpose Seasoning.

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You can see it is not ground so I prefer to use it cooked; but, it can certainly be worked into raw dishes :^) It makes a really good,  basic, vegetable broth/stock; and isn’t so specific in one flavor to make it prohibitive to almost any style food you are preparing — sort of a chameleon base broth :^).

It lends itself to long-cooking, as well as quick cooked or short, simmered dishes,too, which is really nice! Only one drawback — it’s not organic. But I can deal with that for now; my diet is pretty much organic (as organic as I can get it!)  Maybe fooling with the ingredients listed on the label, I can fanagle my own version…

McCormick’s Perfect Pinch Original, All Purpose, Salt-Free Seasoning is available in most supermarkets. I’m in Southern California, but I suppose most generic super-markets are the same.

A few of my favorite veggies for flavoring my broths or cooking foods in include, onions, garlic, celery, green bell peppers, zucchini, mushrooms (all kinds!). I will add other veggies, such as starches — I like parsnips, potatoes; corn — which add texture(s) and flavor, but I limit starches.

I like spices and herbs too, especially, chiles and/or their powders; cumin; coriander; allspice; marjoram; epazote. I like fresh oregano and basil when they fit; tomato powder; a touch of nutritional yeast.

Mustard is appropriate if a bit of tang+flavor bomb is wanted! I like Westbrae Naturals Stone Ground, No Salt Added Mustard. Or, make your own!

What are your favorite veggies for broth or no-salt seasonings?

Strix :^)

Dr. Fuhrman on PBS…

Check your local listings!

Starting Tomorrow, Saturday, August 11 PBS stations will begin airing Dr. Fuhrman’s new special,
“Immunity Solution.”

Here, in Los Angeles, it is showing on KOCE, channel 50.

It will probably be showing over the next couple weeks, if you missed it. Be sure to catch it; and tell everyone you know!

 

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Must See DG!

Yes, who needs “Must See Tv” when we’ve got Must See Dr. G.? 😀
Fantastic presentation by the very personable doctor, Michael Greger, of Nutrition Facts.org. How often do you find a doctor with a funny bone, who is approachable and, guess what? knows his stuff!

It’s an hour, but let’s face it: you’re reading a post on a blog called BeStrixed. You can spare the time! 😛 So turn up the volume while you prepare your meal or whatever you’ gotta do. This is Must See DG!!!

uprooting-the-leading-causes-of-death

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And now, for all you plant lovers…

I’ve been looking for an organic one of these for ages, but have been unsuccessful 😥 . I decided to just get the regular and live with it (hopefully!)

So…time to play…

What Is It?

Okay, it’s a plant…

But what plant?

Okay, I know it looks like it could be a few different things…

Could it be?….

No? Am I being too tough on you?

Little closer, then…

Okay,

Here…

You got it now, right?

Okay, so maybe some of you gardeners out there can give it a shot…

Hmm….

Okay, here’s a hint:

I made this with it…

😛 Now that’s a dead giveaway, Y’All. C’mon, now!

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tnim etalocohc 😉 – Yep. Tastes like and bonus,SMELLS like! Awesomest herb ever. Try some!

Just A Reminder…

Wow, 2003! Remember this? Still stands up, doesn’t it? In fact moreso now, which is pathetic.

Want something a bit more…say, scientific? Discover the nutritional FACTS with Dr. Greger

Poxacuatl

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Eat Your WHITE Foods! Yes, I said that…

WHITE. The dreaded “white foods,” right? WRONG!  White foods are some of the most powerful on the planet. I for one, am tired of the white foods bashing and am taking a stand! Take a looksee…

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Of course there are more like parsnips, durian, and jicama…

Some have white varieties such as white radishes; white pumpkins; white peaches; white  nectarines; white corn, etc.

Many seeds, nuts, and beans are white…

Some I’m not sure about such as guavas. Or, for example, kohlrabi (green or purple) which, if not young or of certain variety, can have inedible colored skin and only white parts to eat — like the black radishes I mentioned in my black foods post.

Of course we must avoid processed junkola, but that isn’t real food, is it?  I mean flour is an isolated processed part of a whole. Very few whole foods are the dreaded “white foods.” I’ll give you white potatoes and popcorn, but even those are sorta okay once in awhile.

But let’s set ’em straight, shall we? Next time someone says to “avoid the ‘white foods,'” rattle off some of the above power foods. Educate them about the many delicious, healthful, anti-aging white foods that the Nutrient-Dense-Eaters among us eat to live  ;^)

  1. Quince
  2. Garlic
  3. Galangal
  4. Jerusalem Artichoke
  5. White Lima Beans
  6. Pignolis
  7. White Chias
  8. Rutabaga
  9. Banana
  10. Cashews
  11. Sunflower Seeds
  12. Cauliflower
  13. Cherimoya
  14. Chestnuts
  15. Coconut
  16. Turnips
  17. White Figs
  18. Onions
  19. Ginger
  20. White Grapes
  21.  Mushrooms
  22. Pears
  23. Plantains

Can you think of some other white foods?

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Greens on the Go…

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Purslane Perfection

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I eat my greens fresh, and every day; but, on occasion, I’ve had to go without because of a particular situation — travel/away from essentials, etc. Now, going without my greens for a day or two — well, I guess that’s not the end of the world, but if I don’t have to then why? ;^)

I do know many people are out all day long and don’t have access to a blender or space to make their smoothies, so they give up on them.

~*~

Well, here are a few tips to get those essential daily greens:

Manual juicer — excellent! Absolutely indispensable for travel. Good for hotels or if staying with relatives or friends. Makes no noise, is small and can be used almost anywhere — all that’s  needed is a table or steady surface to attach it. Compared to electric juicers a real bargain, too. In fact, if one can’t afford a fancy juicer, a good-quality (stainless steel) manual is perfectly fine; and, in fact better than some of the expensive juicers, and should last decades.

Just crank and juice!

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You can also take a small blender, if you’re going to be somewhere with access to an oulet, but don’t want to lug your big blender and juicer. Low-noise and work well if not stuffed with too much at once, it’s best to add, blend, add, blend, etc.

Tribest Personal Blender

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Use Powdered greens

All over the internet; even in stores, there are all kinds of ground greens available now. There are also blends so you can buy just one item and have a bunch of greens in one scoop.

You can buy individual, too, such as spinach, watercress, etc.

Whole fruit/juice — even a stop at a mini-mart on the road will have some kind of fruit or juice

.

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Dried fruit/ fruit powders — internet and stores too.

You can always dry your own when you have an excess ;^)

Dried/powdered vegetables for savory versions, or blended soups.

pea microgreens

A portable blender sounds pretty good — it’s no Blend-tec, of course 😉 —  but  may work on soft leaves like mache, microgreens, and baby spinach — would work for powdered, anyway. Good for camping 😉

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If you add  nuts and seeds to yours, those are great traveling foods

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Spirulina


I haven’t tried any of the blends, and I like simple so I usually do, spirulina* or chlorella, some spinach and a scoop of Matcha. I like the green algaes in my GJGS’s, but don’t use them daily/as often as I used to. They are great traveling greens, though :^)

I like Glaser Farms Spirulina; its flavor is very fresh and clean. Comes in a nice glass jar, .*

Good quality from MRH’s Chlorella (and spirulina); and, I also recommend  HP’s chlorella

Algaes are very potent, so only small amounts are used.

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Algaes make your smoothies a deep rich dark green 😀

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But you do not need an appliance — blender, juicer or other gadget:

You can take bottled juice, shake in some dried green powders and have a delicious GS on the go or when staying in a hotel or as someone’s guest, perhaps.

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Another option I’ve read that some folks employ for short trips for the day — freeze a pre-made smoothie and take it with (I would freeze it in a solid block for slower melting); it would be melted but still icy cold to drink by feeding time.

~***~

baby bok choi, flowering


Eating your greens whole, or slurping them blended and juiced is ideal; and you don’t want to rely on powdered greens, of course. But, occasionally, we need alternative ways to get them. And, heck, if availability of leafy greens is scarce in your neck of the woods, dried or powdered is your ticket!

There is such a variety, too, that there are greens for everyone. The packaging for freshness is so good now, too; plus the freeze-drying method, sun drying or low-temp drying, etc. make them almost, if not as nutrient rich as their fresh form.

No excuses, Y’All ;^)

Beloved Broccoli forever stay - into my salad every day 😀

So small yet so powerful, the broccoli sprout!

*Remember this:

Greens are the *KEY* to destroying cravings.

Greens are what demolished my cravings. I have zero cravings. Really? Yep. Really.

They nourish you so well, that your body becomes what it was meant to be —

Cue “6 Million Dollar Man” theme  OR… 😉   

— a perfect self-healing, self-sufficient, most-awesome-living-thing-on-this-planet- M_A_C_H_I_N_E — going after what it needs to survive — nutrients — destroying deadly cancers and other evildoers in its path like a Green-inator, leaving in its wake, vital organs and nutrient-rich cells *intact* and thriving.  YOU, too, can be rebuilt —

better

stronger

faster! 😀

/cut music/  😉

AND your body won’t signal what you perceive as cravings “false hunger”). Why?  Because it does NOT want junk.

Greens are the oils that lubricate your gears! They’re the premium fuel that runs your engine, clean. They are the spinach to your inner Popeye.

Don’t have greens once in a while.

Don’t have a “handful” of greens in your smoothies

Don’t have greens as a phase —

Greens are a food you should  — no, have to —  eat daily for the rest of your life.

They are the ULTIMATE HEALING FOOD. Make no mistake. Get ENOUGH.

~ *** ~

Buckwheat Lettuce/Microgreens

Eat ’em raw, blended, juiced and stewed,

They aren’t sides or condiments, leafy greens are FOOD!

Slice ’em, dice ’em —  heck, chiffonade

Any way you can get ’em;  Don’t be a clod. :p

Simmered, creamed, chopped and steamed — they satisfy more than you ever dreamed.

Fill up with greens, and  get yourself lean.

Good for your body and the ol’ bean 😉

Flax Microgreens


Saturate your cells with nutrients galore

and strong mind and body will be yours evermore 😀

Let the healing begin!

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*Note the caution at the bottom MRH’s spirulina page. As always, do your research.

The Purloining of the Pomegranate…

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Peter Piper Picked a Peck of Purple Pomes.

A Peck of Purple Pomes, Peter Piper Picked.

If Peter Piper Picked a Peck of Purple Pomes,

How’d he Purge the Purple Pulpy Pearls?

Hm. A precarious pickle, indeed.

Well, there is more than one way to dislodge the snug little arils; however, the following is my personal fave I learned from an old Martha Stewart show.

I would have made a video, but my third arm is at the dry cleaners; so pictures will have to do.

Cut through the skin about 1/4 inch to start and rotate the fruit around to slice only through the rind — like scoring. You don’t want to cut through when you cut around, you’ll end up crushing the arils and losing juice  (remember the first cut through to halve cake layers? Like that)

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cut pome by scoring through the peel only, all the way around its center

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When finished cutting all the way around, simply twist the pomegranate gently within your palms and it will halve nicely.

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Twist pome gently for a clean break

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Now, place a deep bowl in your sink and, using the back of a large knife, or, better a large wood spoon or spatula and holding the pome cut side down, give the skin-side some whacks. Here I’m using my silicone spatulas (which I like; they’re heat resistant, too, and come in various sizes).

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over a bowl, tap the pomegranate

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…Tap the sides, and all over with moderate force

And, the arils pop out nicely. You can get some splashing — some times  more than others, but it’s all good in the end! you’ll see.

Tapping it into your hand, yields better results — you’ll get less splashing the surrounding area, too, and the arils fall through your fingers

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Tap the pomegranate into your palm

*By the way, using a deep bowl and placing in the sink like this, I’ve never gotten any pome juice on my clothes or had any splash in my eyes (unlike lemon…why does that always happen?!); however, if you’re wary, wear an apron 🙂

Into the palm, go the pomes, down to the bowl through finger holes

So, hey, check ‘er out:

Nice and cleanly removed arils. Tip: Stud with cloves and hang to dry (or dry in dehydrator)

Even cleaned out, they are stunning! I think I’ll stud some with cloves, and for the holiday 🙂

Here you see you don’t lose a thing using this method.

check out the juice! (This much juice collection is because I did many pomegranates at once)

Voila! A plethora of perfectly pilfered plums! 😀

Well, I’ll be ding donged!

Found the vid; Martha shows how to!



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*She shows it in the first 2 minutes, so you don’t need to watch the whole thing*

That isn’t the show I saw, and I see on this epidode she scores it in quarters — good idea for the bigger globes! Gotta remember that. Here’s another way to remove arils.

Nutrient rich, pomegranates are worthy of your attention! In last month’s Huffington Post, Dr. Fuhrman. found pomegranates worthy of mention, referring to them as one of 5 foods to be, “medicine” Wow! Food = medicine. That’s pretty dang powerful: Read more on just how powerful.

Pomes have lotsa polyphenols (whoa, concords are loaded too!)

Only precaution: while pome juice is worth drinking, one can just as well consume it via the seeds: That age-old question: to eat the seeds or spit?! (did anyone ever chew the shells of sunflower seeds?! Was that a children’s thing or do adults do that? Hee .) I’ve read there is some nutritional benefit of ingesting  the seeds — I don’t know for sure, I imagine so, since pomegranate oil is highly prized –  however, I have no problem consuming them. The oil, beneficial or  not, would be in insignificant amounts anyway. According to the California Pomegranate Council (funny) the seeds are edible, and it’s simply a matter of taste as to whether one should consume them. As well, the pith of some fruits appear to contain benefits from what I’ve read…Personally, I love the pith of some fruits, especially citrus! Most say it’s bitter, but I find it “sweet”; the bitter is usually the pith closest to the skin. the closer to the fruit, the milder. When juiced or blended, it adds creaminess. But, that’s just me

Old pic of pomegranate ice cream .I made… think I used macadamias and cashews, Oy!

So anyway, fruit juice should be limited. Juice — too much of it — can be like a sugar bomb; plus, one can miss out on a LOT of the valuable nutrients left behind, while tossing the fiber. Now, if you want to waste money, get extra calories with minimal satiety, AND minimal benefits, have at it. BUT, pomegranate juice can be an exception —  with guidelines! Because of its value it can — and for some, should — be  a regular part of the diet; but one doesn’t need a ton of it a day — I recall reading a recommendation for a quarter cup per day being enough. Good thing ’cause it ain’t cheap, no matter how you get it. 🙂

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If you don’t want/cant get juice regulary, then get some through LDL Protect, a formulation anyone can take who wants the benefits of plant sterols and phytochemicals. Read about powerful plant sterols, pomegrantes, and LDL Protect, HERE.

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Pomegranate Snowcone!

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It can be incorporated into recipes, as well, but stay away from processed stuff;  use it fresh! A couple examples: Ice cream. Imagine fresh out-of-season pome sorbet during summer! Pop some cubes into lemonade or limeade…mmmm. How about a slushy or popsicle? Add the arils to grains, salads and morning cereals. Fruit leathers; pomegranate milk; yummy dressings…it’s endless, really. Oh, I make a mean ETL sangria

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Now, how to punctiliously pick that peck of  persnickety pears without peril:

Hm.. Let us proceed  prudently..

Heavy! That’s a general rule: the heavier, the juicier. No bruises; firm; tight skin; early and mid-winter are best of the season. Skin color not as important, but I do like to get the deepest red if all other requirements for freshness are met. No soft spots, or cracks; wrinkling is not a good sign.

There are varieties of pomegranates,  here is a “white pomegranate” I was lucky to find.

The site says the white are sweeter! I don’t recall, actually, any difference. Hmph. The Japanese one at the bottom of the page looks interesting. It says it’s sort of tart. Maybe that’s the one I tried…though, again, I don’t recall it being “tart” either.  I wonder if it has less phytos than the dark? If so, perhaps it contains something else as its advantage?

~*~

Thawed pomegranate: Squeeze for juice

How to juice?

(The skin should not be juiced) Well, again, there are a few ways — I discovered that freezing whole or halved pomegranates, like I do with ginger, for example, is surprisingly efficient at juicing. On those rushed days, I’ve  thrown them into the freezer 🙂  As in the photo above, simply thaw and squeeze a half. Lots of pressing over a strainer will render more; Twist and squeeze through a cloth or crush with a potato masher if you don’t want to squeeze it with your bare hands.

You can pulse in a blender or a food processor, then strain; grind it through a food mill; squeeze the arils, a halve, or quarter through ahand-held citrus juicer (not my choice — messy!); use a reamer (I LOVE those vintage reamers!); or  run the the arils through your juicer.

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Generally,

…”One medium pomegranate weighs about 9 ounces and yields about 5 ounces of fruit (3/4 cup) and 4 ounces (1/2 cup) of juice.”

*TipS: Frozen arils are great through the juicer. As well, the arils, frozen or fresh, help clean out the screen of the hard-to-remove pulp that’s often left behind when juicing leafy greens for you to scrub off (this is especially true with the single auger style juicers.)

Run them through last or almost last.

*Tip* (A bottle brush , if it doesn’t come with your juicer is worth buying for cleaning your juicer parts – found at hardware stores)

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Storage:

Whole pomegranates store for months under fridger,(and can sit out up to a couple of weeks, depending on how fresh they were when purchased/picked), but best to eat soon. Freezing is a great alternative.

I like storing food in wax bags before placing into any plastic. These Natural Value brand wax bags are a must in my kitchen — one for the “Favorite Things” list 🙂  (I get them at the market). Parchment, is another, and I use it for this purpose too.

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Then seal them in larger plastic bags for longer storage:

You can store the juice in the fridge — I’d not for more than a couple days; or freeze, well sealed for enjoyment during the off season — mm, that is fabulous, by the way. I purchase pomes throughout  the height of the season, but also the end of season, juice the whole lot of them, freeze them and never have to pay for the very expensive, heated and processed, and preserved, who-knows-how-old bottled pomegranate juice. If mine is a few months old, but fresh-frozen,  I’m better with that :D.

Ice trays are a fabulous way

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Here you see the difference when manually juicing the arils — the dark — and running the arils through a juicer:

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*No biggie: the juicing of the seeds is just fine. I ran it by Dr. Fuhrman to be sure, and he said it’s all good 🙂

*Conveniently portioned, it’s nice to just reach in the freezer for some of the magic 😉

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Enjoy pomegranates however you like them; they’ll be gone from markets much too soon!

Strix

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